Thursday, June 30, 2016

The Israel Narrative Is Wrong

By Evelyn Gordon June 21, 2016

For the full article go to:

The standard narrative about Israel these days goes like this: The current government is the most right-wing ever, the public is increasingly racist and anti-democratic, and the prime minister is either a right-wing zealot or a coward afraid to challenge his right-wing base. But the most remarkable part of this narrative is how durable it has proven despite all evidence to the contrary.

The latest such evidence comes from today’s Jerusalem Post report about a massive drop in construction in the settlements. According to the Central Bureau of Statistics, housing starts in the settlements plummeted by 53 percent in the first quarter, compared to an 8.1 percent decline in housing starts nationwide. Needless to say, one would expect settlement construction to soar under Israel’s “most right-wing government ever” and a prime minister captive to his right-wing base. Yet in fact, as I’ve written before, the “right-wing” Benjamin Netanyahu has consistently built less in the settlements than any of his left-wing predecessors–a fact that never seems to disturb proponents of the “far-right extremist” narrative.

Even more noteworthy was a pair of reports in the left-wing daily Haaretz earlier this month about two unprecedented moves to boost equality for Israeli Arabs. The first report noted that the Council for Higher Education, chaired by Education Minister Naftali Bennett of the right-of-center Jewish Home party, is advancing plans for Israel’s first ever BA-granting college in an Arab town. Until now, the only institutes of higher education in Arab towns have been teacher’s colleges. But a tender to set up a BA-granting college closed on May 31, and the CHE is now reviewing the five bids it received. The winner is expected to be announced in another few months, and the new institution is slated to open next year. To help it succeed, the government has promised millions of shekels in start-up funds plus an annual budget of 20 to 40 million shekels (depending on enrollment).

The new institution is expected to significantly increase the number of Arabs, and especially Arab women, obtaining BAs, because many will now be able to live at home and commute to college. Not only will this eliminate the expense of renting apartments near campus, but it also solves the access problem for women from conservative Arab families who are barred by social norms from living away from home.

The second report described two moves to ease the housing shortage in Arab communities. First, a government planning committee decided to build a new neighborhood in the Arab city of Taibeh, which “will be one of the largest building plans in the Arab sector to have been approved for many years,” the report noted. Second, the Interior Ministry approved a decision to take land from the Jewish jurisdiction of Misgav and give it to the Arab town of Sakhnin. The report also noted that these decisions are merely the latest in “an increasing number” over the past year and a half intended “to accelerate development in the Arab sector, after many decades of neglect and inaction.”

Like the drop in settlement construction, these efforts on behalf of Israeli Arabs don’t exactly fit the narrative of a government and public mired in right-wing extremism. Indeed, they contradict it so blatantly that even Haaretz reporter Nimrod Bousso couldn’t ignore it. “One cannot help but wonder why this change is finally taking place under the leadership of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the man who never seems to miss a chance to demonstrate hostility toward the group that makes up a fifth of Israel’s population … and whose government has a significant number of members with nationalist views,” he wrote in his news story on the Taibeh and Sakhnin decisions.

The answer, of course, is that the narrative is simply wrong on every count. Diplomatically speaking, as I’ve noted before, this government is actually one of the more left-wing in Israel’s history: Though Netanyahu doesn’t consider a two-state solution achievable right now, he does accept the idea in principle; in contrast, during Israel’s first 45 years of existence, all governments from both left and right considered a Palestinian state anathema. And Netanyahu’s policy of restraining settlement construction – which, contrary to his “cowardly” image, he has maintained despite considerable opposition from parts of his base – is consistent with his stated commitment to a two-state solution.

Moreover, as the examples above show, his past three governments have actually been among the most progressive in Israel’s history in terms of their practical efforts to improve Arab integration. And unlike his settlement policy, his efforts to advance Arab equality have sparked no significant opposition from either his cabinet or his electorate, even though Israeli Arabs overwhelmingly vote for his political opponents. 

The reason is simple: Any government which considers Israeli-Palestinian peace unachievable in the foreseeable future has no choice but to invest in Israel’s internal development, in order to ensure that the country is strong enough to survive without peace. And improving Arab integration is crucial to the country’s internal development because Israeli Arabs, currently underrepresented in both higher education and the work force, represent one of the main potential sources of future economic growth.

But proponents of the “far-right-extremism” narrative seem utterly impervious to the facts. So they can only scratch their heads in puzzlement over why Israel’s “most right-wing government ever” is precisely the one that’s taking far-reaching steps to improve the lot of Israeli Arabs.

Video of the week: Syrian Refugees vs. Palestinian "Refugees"


Thursday, June 23, 2016

Teachers in Jerusalem coexistence experiment

Written by  Jessica Steinberg

For the full article go to THE TIMES OF ISRAEL 

Teachers Haifa Alayan and Annie Kurland were standing outside the Jerusalem YMCA, looking at the photography exhibit of the Teachers’ Room Project, a coexistence project founded by organization This Is Jerusalem!

It was a tough day to talk about coexistence, both women admitted.

Yet it’s the most crucial time to think about one another, said Haifa Alayan, who is Muslim and teaches English at an Arab elementary school for girls in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Abu Tor.

“I’m a person who believes that you have to look at things from a different perspective,” said Alayan. “Even before I joined this group, any time there was a chance to do something like this, to open the window, I would do it. I want my students to speak, I want to bring up a new generation.”

Kurland, who is Jewish and teaches drama and math at Keshet, a pluralistic, mixed elementary school of religious and secular children, could have spoken the same words.

The two women were looking at an exhibit of photos displaying their last six months of work with the Teachers’ Room Project, which was sponsored by several organizations, including Hebrew Union College, the Jewish Institute of Religion and Reshut Harabim — the Jerusalem Forum of Jewish Renewal Organizations, as well as the Jerusalem Foundation, New Israel Fund, ROI community and the Municipality’s Department of Education.

Dedicated to the memory of Shira Banki, the 16-year-old Jerusalemite who was killed during last year’s Jerusalem Gay Pride Parade, the Teachers’ Room aims to have this group of teachers spend time together and gain an understanding of each other’s worlds and cultures. They’re then expected to bring those experiences and lessons back to their classrooms.

For many, it wasn’t the first time they were participating in some sort of coexistence organization. Both Kurland and Alayan have taken part in groups in which they met the “other.” Their children have as well.

Yet something about Teachers’ Room was different. The project’s first exercise, back in December, had each teacher map their daily routes, from home to school along with myriad other locations.

Although Alayan lives in the Arab neighborhood of Beit Safafa in southern Jerusalem and drives down Hebron Road, a major thoroughfare, to reach the girls’ elementary school in Abu Tor where she teaches, she never crossed paths with Kurland, who lives in the Jewish side of Abu Tor.

That was one memorable revelation.

Another was when each teacher showed photos of their homes, the interiors as well as the exteriors. Alayan couldn’t believe that Kurland lived in the same neighborhood as her students, mostly because none of her students’ homes overlook the verdant valley that is the view from Kurland’s balcony.

“Their houses are all stacked on top of each other, right?” asked Kurland.

When Alayan said she had never seen a house like Annie’s, it felt like a blow, said Kurland.

Another teacher, who is Muslim and wears a head covering, told the group that she had never been to Jerusalem’s Mahane Yehuda market because she feared she wouldn’t be welcome. So Alayan and Kurland planned an outing to the market, with Kurland linking arms with the Muslim woman for the entire time they were there.

“I wanted everyone to know that we were there together,” she said.

There were gatherings where each teacher brought symbols of their religious practice, or photos of their classrooms. Even those meetings created fodder for the thoughtful teachers.

Considering how long Alayan has thought about coexistence and practiced it with her husband and five children ages 9 to 19, she was surprised how little she knew and how foreign certain aspects of Israelis’ lives could feel.

“We met and things happened,” said Kurland. She thought about the maps they made on that first day, and how she and Alayan “have parallel roads, and no way to meet,” she said. “Someone made sure we’d never meet.”

The teachers told stories about places and times when each of them had felt like they didn’t belong. Alayan recalled strolling around Rehavia, the historic Jewish neighborhood where her grandmother used to clean houses, while another teacher told about her soldier daughter in uniform getting attacked in the ultra-Orthodox neighborhood of Mea Shearim.

“We’re always thinking of the ‘other’ as Arab, but there’s all kinds of ‘others,'” she said.

There were moments of discord as well, said the two teachers.

When one of the Arab teachers talked about a recent terrorist incident as an accident, Kurland corrected her, calling it an attack. She thought about how personal connections make a difference when a confrontation occurs.

“Haifa can say something really harsh to me, but I know her,” she said. “Even when she says something tough, and I think she can’t be saying that about me and my soldier son, the fact that I know her changes the discussion. It’s one that’s real and sheds light.”

It was those kinds of insights — and the more measured responses — that brought the organization to select a group teachers for this program.

“They chose us because we’re the passage from the outside into the classroom,” said Kurland. “We have the ability in our classrooms to open their minds and tell them about reality, to show them that it’s not black and white. We can show our students that the reality is very complicated.”

Their students, said the teachers, often have no idea how to process the events that take place around them,

Kurland recalled that when she first brought a program from the Teachers’ Room to her Jewish students, they were surprised to learn that Arabs weren’t just cleaners, as the only Arabs many knew worked on the cleaning staff of the school.

Alayan said that when the Sarona Market shooting attack came up in her classroom, some of the students said what happened “was okay,” while others said it wasn’t.

“I told them that I could have been there too, that it’s a public place,” she said. “That changed their minds a little but they still said ‘they do bad things to us,'” referring to Israeli Jews. “I didn’t go too far with them,” said Alayan.

As teachers, both Alayan and Kurland have similar approaches when it comes to discussing difficult events with their students, agreeing that the subject has to come up in conversation before they can broach the topic.

“I have around 25 kids in each class, and four different classes, but I have to try to get them to discuss it,” said Alayan. “In our school, these issues only get discussed if the teacher wants to, they don’t want us to interfere. But it’s not right to keep it all in, the kids have to let it out. They hear about things all the time.”

Kurland agreed.

“The kids don’t live in a bubble,” she said. “But we wait for them to bring it up and then we talk about it.”

For now, the group is taking the summer off, with plans to bring what they’ve learned back to their students in the fall.

“It’s not just activities,” said Kurland, “but the fact that we’ve met, that we’re a group, and to show ourselves to others out there. There are lots of groups like us, but you don’t always see them. We want people to know that this is happening.”

Video of the week – Israelis greet Muslims for a blessed Ramadan- 


Wednesday, June 15, 2016


For the full article go to JP:

The world according to the remarkable scholar and celebrity historian.

I’d like to congratulate Bernard Lewis: Not only did he celebrate his 100th birthday on May 31 – an achievement which obviously owes something to forces and good fortune beyond his direct control – he should be congratulated for not spending the better part of the century, and certainly recent decades, saying: “I told you so!” The temptation must be enormous.

In an interview with him written in 2007 by then editor-in-chief David Horovitz and reporter Tovah Lazaroff, Lewis was asked: “In your writings you have spoken of the feelings of humiliation and rage in the Muslim world. When will their rage subside, if at all?” The answer: “One way [for them] to alleviate their rage is to win some large victories. Which could happen. They seem to be about to take over Europe.”

Post: “‘About to take over Europe?’ Do you have a time frame for that? It sounds pretty dramatic.”

Lewis: “No, I can’t give you the time frame, but I can give you the stages of the process: Immigration and democracy on their side, and a mood of what I can only call self-abasement on the European side – in the name of political correctness and multiculturalism, to surrender on any and every issue.

“I was talking only the other day at the Herzliya conference with a German journalist.

We were chatting informally over a cup of coffee. He was expressing his profound alarm at the mood of what he called self-abasement among the Germans at the present time. ‘We mustn’t do anything to offend them. We must be nice to them. We must let them do things their way,’ and so on and so on and so on.”

What does that mean for the Jewish communities of Europe, even in the short term, Lewis was asked.

“The outlook for the Jewish communities of Europe is dim,” he replied.

Soon, he warned, the only pertinent question regarding Europe’s future would be, “Will it be an Islamized Europe or Europeanized Islam?”

LEWIS IS a rare breed: a celebrity historian and scholar. He coined the phrase “the clash of civilizations” – made famous by Samuel Huntington – and many of his studies on the Ottomans and the Middle East are still considered classics.

Not bad for somebody born the same month as the Sykes-Picot agreement dividing the Middle East between the British and the French.

A few years ago, I reviewed a collection of his essays, speeches and articles titled Faith and Power: Religion and Politics in the Middle East.

A line of thought that appears throughout is that the separation of “church and state,” such a basic concept in most of the Western world, is not compatible with Islam.

Among his insights: “The emergence of a population, many millions strong, of Muslims born and educated in Western Europe will have immense and unpredictable consequences for Europe, for Islam and for the relations between them.”

I don’t want to hear a “Told you so!” so much as an update in the wake of the current mass migration to Europe’s shores, as borders in the Middle East disappear and fences are erected even within the European Union.

He doesn’t get everything right – who can? – but some special Lewis touches that I found in the book when I first read and reviewed it, stood out again when I dusted off my copy for another look in honor of his centennial birthday.

“Comparing the relationship between property and power in the modern American and classical Middle Eastern systems, one might put the difference this way: In America one uses money to buy power, while in the Middle East, one uses power to acquire money,” he writes.

Similarly, Lewis recognizes the “intensely personal character” of almost all aspects of Muslim government, where the ruler, families, clans and ethnic loyalties are far more important than the state itself.

This, I believe, is the key to understanding what is going on now, and will continue to be true.

It’s not a criticism. It’s a phenomenon that requires recognition and understanding.

Any discussions on a future Palestinian state, for example, should take into account the rivalry (to put it lightly) between Gaza and the West Bank, and even between different cities within the West Bank.

TRIBALISM IS inherent in human nature.

It is natural to identify with a smaller unit.

We may live in the global village, and even consider ourselves citizens of the world, but ultimately there is always some other identity closer to home.

This is an underlying message behind Britain’s upcoming Brexit vote on whether or not to leave the EU – which will have tremendous implications for the UK and also for nationalist, breakaway movements throughout the continent.

It’s the premise that every major sporting event is based on.

If the vast majority of its residents were to consider themselves primarily as Europeans, whose nationality is of secondary importance, the 2016 UEFA European Championship, the 15th such quadrennial football championship, would not be kicking off on June 10 and the world would not be gearing up for the Rio Olympics later this summer.

The heightened security is a sign of the downside of the tribalism. More classic Lewis: In a chapter headlined “License to kill,” he stresses: “At no point do the basic texts of Islam enjoin terrorism and murder,” adding, however: “Terrorism requires only a few.”

That is true for terrorism committed by supremacists of all backgrounds, of course.

My British background made it inevitable that I have an affiliation to a football club, even without understanding the game. In England, it was easy: My family has traditionally been Arsenal supporters and I saw no reason to break that multi-generational chain.

When I arrived in Jerusalem, I gravitated to Beitar Jerusalem, which was on a winning streak, and quite often my work for the Post’s local paper in the late 1980s took me to events and parties where the team members would hang out. (I recall local legend Uri Malmillian telling me that playing football was similar to playing chess, you had to have a strategy and be able to think a few moves ahead.) I remained loyal to the team as long as I could. Ultimately, it wasn’t the players who got me down but the fringe group of violently racist fans known as La Familia.

It takes a huge amount of courage and conviction to break away from a top team, but Beitar Nordia Jerusalem did just that – it created a fan-based club where, unlike Beitar Jerusalem, everyone could feel safe and at home.

Thanks to the wonders of modern technology, I often followed its most recent – hugely successful – season via Facebook updates as I prepared for Shabbat on a Friday afternoon. A new coach, Moshe Salmi, was appointed this week.

The team, and its fans, are good sports, crying “foul” at racism and proving that pride does not have to be accompanied by prejudice.

In the Irving Kristol lecture delivered in March 2007, Lewis said: “A favorite theme of the historian is periodization – dividing history into periods. Periodization is mostly a convenience of the historian for purposes of writing or teaching. Nevertheless, there are times in the long history of human adventure when we have a real turning point – the end of an era, the beginning of a new era. I’m becoming more and more convinced that we are in such an age at the present time – a change in history comparable with the fall of Rome, the advent of Islam, and the discovery of America.”

What the future will bring, only time will tell. That, and perhaps, a thorough review of Bernard Lewis’s remarkable work.

Video of the week: Why The West Doesn’t Care If Terrorists Kill Jews


Thursday, June 9, 2016


            Watch the Oxfam video at - , then read the true facts below


a)   Hamas is dedicated to the destruction of Israel as a sovereign entity. It’s in their charter and they publicly announce it at every opportunity.
b)   As shown in the map, Gaza has two borders: one with fellow Arab country Egypt and one with their enemy Israel.  Given that Gaza initiates wars against Israel, rocketing Israel’s civilian population, every couple of years, it is only to be  expected that Gaza would have open access for people and trade via Egypt and not Israel.   If Gaza has problems with these access issues, it is an internal Arab problem between the Arab peoples of Egypt and Gaza and has no bearing on Israel.
  c)  No one expects countries to trade with and maintain open borders with their enemies, and so it is illogical and inconsistent to expect such openness between Gaza and Israel.

d)  More aid per capita is given to Gaza than any other group. A look at eight countries in the top 10—Sudan, South Sudan, Jordan, Lebanon, Somalia, Ethiopia, Afghanistan and the Democratic Republic of Congo—is even more alarming. CIA Factbook data show that these countries have a combined population of 284 million and an average per capita GDP of $2,376. Yet they received an average of $15.30 per capita in development assistance in 2013. The Palestinians, by comparison, with a population of 4.5 million, have a per capita GDP of $4,900.

e)    A large percentage of the aid is taken from the citizens to advance the war preparations of Hamas which is one factor why some donors are not honouring their pledges

f)   Re the water issue, the Israeli Water Commission increased the amount of water supplied to Gaza according to the Oslo accords by 100% from 5 mcm (mill cubic metres) to 10 mcm

e)   Hamas is not repairing damaged water infrastructure

h)    The World bank has offered finance for a desalination plant but are suspicious of how the money they offer will be used.

i)   Hamas is not stopping illegal drilling of wells which has damaged the salinity of water table.

j)   The border restrictions are in place in Israel AND Egypt because of the constant attempts by Hamas to import terror related materials.

k)     The citizens of Gaza are captive by Hamas, they have no freedoms of action or speech

l)    Every requested movement of the population, for example hospital visits must be checked thoroughly.
One Gazan woman who had been treated in Beer Sheva hospital returned for, supposedly, follow up treatment tried to blow herself up in that same hospital

m)   In spite of the need for thoroughly checking every request for permission to leave, 20,000 Gazans visited the Temple Mount in 2015  Read for information on assistance given in the field of health care, Palestinian importers and exporters,

n)   Despite all the problems created by Hamas, Israel provides significant humanitarian aid to Gaza (as she does to  Syrian civilians in the North), and it is a tribute to Israel that she does so. See Cogat website above.     

o)     In the words of the King of Siam in The King and I - -“etcetera, etcetera, etcetera…..”


Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Abbas claims 6,000-year-old Palestinian nation

Mahmoud Abbas:
  • "The Bible says that the Palestinians existed before Abraham"
  • "The invention of the Canaanite-Palestinian alphabet [was] more than 6,000 years ago"
Abbas' advisor claims 
5,000-year Palestinian history in the land:

Mahmoud Al-Habbash:
  • "We have been here for the last 5,000 years, and have not left this land"
  • "Our forefathers are the monotheist Canaanites and Jebusites"

In order to make Palestinians believe that they have an ancient history that precedes Jewish history in the land of Israel, Palestinian Authority leaders regularly fabricate tales of a 5,000- or sometimes 6,000-year-old Palestinian nation. Recently, PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas and his advisor Mahmoud Al-Habbash each spoke on two different occasions about a Palestinian nation that they claim preceded Abraham in the land of Canaan. Abbas even misrepresented the Bible by claiming biblical support for his claims: 


Mahmoud Abbas: "Our narrative says that we were in this land since before Abraham. I am not saying it. The Bible says it. The Bible says, in these words, that the Palestinians existed before Abraham. So why don't you recognize my right?"
[Official PA TV, March 21, 2016]
Abbas' statement about the Bible is false. The only Biblical reference Abbas could be talking about is the text that Abraham dwelt "many days in the land of the Philistines." (Genesis 21: 34). However, the Philistines have no connection to today's Palestinian Arabs. The Philistines were a people of Greek origin who settled in the land of Canaan and lived beside the Israelite tribes. The Palestinians who are Arabs could not have had ancestors in the land from biblical times predating Israelite and Judean statehood because Arabs only arrived in the land in 637 CE with the Muslim invasion. Needless to say, the "Palestinians" are not mentioned in the Bible.

Significantly, Abbas says that this "fact" - which is a fabrication - is what gives Palestinians a "right" to the land.

Mahmoud Al-Habbash, Mahmoud Abbas' advisor on Religious and Islamic Affairs and Supreme Shari'ah Judge, also repeated the false claim about a 5,000-year-old Palestinian people who predated Abraham, in last week's Friday sermon:

"They [the Jews] are thieves who stole the land, and who want to steal the history, but history cannot change and cannot be falsified. The facts bear witness to it. We have been here for the last 5,000 years, and have not left this land. We have not left this land. Our forefathers are the monotheist Canaanites and Jebusites. They are the ones who built Jerusalem, before Abraham was even here."
[Official PA TV, June 3, 2016]
In another recent televised talk, Abbas voiced two additional falsehoods, first speaking about an ancient Canaanite-Palestinian people with a 6,000-year-old history, and then adding that this ancient people invented an alphabet:
"This land was never without a people, as we have been planted in its rocks and dust and hills since the beginning of civilization and writing and the invention of the Canaanite-Palestinian alphabet more than 6,000 years ago."
[Official PA TV, May 14, 2016]
Writing was only invented around 3,500 BCE. The earliest Canaanite alphabet, considered to be the ancestor of most modern alphabets, is dated to around 1,500 BCE.
In Al-Habbash's talk last Friday, he added yet another falsehood, denying the well-documented Jewish history in the land of Israel:
"They [the Jews] claim that there was a Temple here. Those are unfounded claims, myths, and rumors."
[Official PA TV, June 3, 2016]
Two months ago, Al-Habbash also spoke about this alleged 5,000-year-old "history," claiming Palestinians were "the first to reside in this land":

"The Palestinians have been on this land for 5,000 years. Of course, we were the first to reside in this land. The first to reside in it. There was no one before us. Never was there a period in this history of this land when we were not in it. Over the course of these millennia, many have passed through this land and left. History has turned the page on them, but the land remained as well as its people and its true owners who never changed. This occupation is a transient thing, despite the pain and suffering."
[Official PA TV, April 1, 2016]
Palestinian Media Watch has documented the PA's historical revision in detail for years.
In 2014, Al-Habbash presented this fabricated history more in detail, adding that Israel's existence is destined to end and that Israel will leave because all other "nations" who came to "this land" were temporary and left. According to Abbas' advisor Israel is like other "foreigners... Crusaders... Tatars" and "will pass":
"We have been on this land for 5,000 years, perhaps the Palestinian nation itself. Of course, over the course of all these years and long centuries, for over 5,000 years, many empires and nations came to this land, to Jerusalem, one after the other. They came and went, lived here for a certain period of time, and then left. But the essential substance that remained - like the rocks of this land, like the grains of sand of this land, like the water of this land, like the air of this land, like the olive tree of this land - the essential substance that stayed is the Palestinian people. There was no period in history without the presence of the Palestinian people on this land. We are the salt of this earth, we are its essence, we are its air and water and we will never leave it. Many transients left and will leave... This land is ours. The Nakba (i.e., "the catastrophe," Palestinian term for establishment of State of Israel), believe me, the Nakba will pass, just as the others who passed. The foreigners, the imperialism of the Crusaders, lived here for more than 92 years, and then scattered and left. The Tatars came and then left. Others came and left and the land remained with its people, its sons. The Palestinians remained in Palestine, and they will stay until Allah inherits the earth."
[Official PA TV, May 16, 2014]
PA leaders use this false historical narrative to indoctrinate their people to deny Jewish history in the land and instead adopt an imaginary Palestinian history. This ultimately serves to encourage Palestinians to deny Israel's right to exist and is the basis for Palestinian claims to the land. As Abbas said:
"The Palestinians existed before Abraham. So why don't you recognize my right?"
[Official PA TV, March 21, 2016]
The following is a longer excerpt of the PA's historical revision as presented by Al-Habbash last week:
Mahmoud Abbas' advisor on Religious and Islamic Affairs, Mahmoud Al-Habbash: "They [the Jews] claim that there was a Temple here. Those are unfounded claims, myths, and rumors. However, the problem between us and them is not a problem of religious or historical narrative. The problem is that they are thieves. The problem is that they are thieves who stole the land, and who want to steal the history, but history cannot change and cannot be falsified. The facts bear witness to it. We have been here for the last 5,000 years, and have not left this land. We have not left this land. Our forefathers are the monotheist Canaanites and Jebusites. They are the ones who built Jerusalem, before Abraham was even here." 
[Official PA TV, June 3, 2016]


Thursday, June 2, 2016

Background to the “SIX DAY WAR”

For the full article go to CAMERA -

The Six-Day War involved three distinct battlefronts, tied together by a shared desire on the part of the surrounding Arab states to eliminate Israel and erase the shame of their defeat 19 years earlier when they failed to destroy the nascent Jewish state.

Egypt, the largest Arab state with a population of 31 million, massed troops on its border with Israel and imposed a naval blockade of Israel’s southern port, an act of war. Confronted with these aggressive moves, and the Arab leaders' promises to destroy the Jewish state, Israel launched a pre-emptive strike against the Egyptian army and airforce. Egypt’s air force was quickly crippled, and a well-executed Israeli ground offensive routed the Egyptian forces in Gaza and the Sinai peninsula in four days.

Buoyed by false reports of Egyptian success, Jordan initiated offensive actions against Israel from the eastern portion of Jerusalem and from lands it occupied west of the Jordan river (the West Bank). Israeli forces responded by attacking Jordanian military positions. After a three days of fierce fighting, especially in and around Jerusalem, Israeli forces defeated the Jordanians and gained control of all of Jerusalem as well as the West Bank, the historical heartland of the Jewish people known to Israelis as Judea and Samaria.

Following an air attack by the Syrians on the first day of the war, Israel dealt a shattering blow to the Syrian air force. Hostilites continued in the days that followed, and on fifth day of the war, the Israelis mustered enough forces to remove the Syrian threat from the Golan Heights. This difficult operation was completed the following day, bringing the active phase of the war to a close.

Egyptian front
The first full-scale battles of the Six Day War came on the morning of June 5, 1967 after a roughly 20 day period of increasing tensions between Israel and the Arab states, principally Egypt, Syria and Jordan.
For further details go to -

Jordanian front
In the days before June 5, Jordan had deployed in the West Bank opposite Israel ten of its eleven brigades, totaling some 45,000 men.
For further details go to -

Syrian front
In the years and months leading up to the 1967 war, Syria had played a crucial role in raising tensions by engaging in acts of sabotage and incessantly shelling Israeli communities.
For further details go to -

Video of the week: The Miracles Of The Six Day War -