Latest Analysis & Commentary

Is CAIR Lying about a Rally for Hamas?

by Daniel Pipes  •  August 22, 2014 at 5:00 am

CAIR should be treated as a marginal and despised group like the Ku Klux Klan or the Nation of Islam.

A "Stop the Bloodshed in Gaza" rally in downtown Miami on July 20 featured aggressive Islamist chants typical of anti-Israel events. In English, the demonstrators yelled "We are Hamas!" and "We are Jihad!" (as can be seen and heard here). In Hebrew, a Hamas partisan screamed at an Israel-supporter, "Son of a bitch" and "Go to Hell!" and made an obscene arm gesture. In Arabic, the crowd chanted the infamous "Khaybar, Khaybar, oh Jew, Muhammad's army will return" (a reference to a massacre of Jews under the auspices of Islam's prophet in A.D. 629).

As I say, just a typical anti-Israel demonstration, and far from the worst. Typical – except that some of its sponsors desperately seek respectability.

In a July 23 report on the demonstration, investigative researcher Danielle Avel posted a scan of a glossy paper flier advertising the event, listing its seven sponsors:

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Bringing Abbas Back to Gaza Not a Good Idea

by Khaled Abu Toameh  •  August 21, 2014 at 5:00 am

A third reason Abbas still does not trust Hamas is the revelation this week that that the Islamist movement had planned to overthrow his regime in the West Bank. Even if the Palestinian Authority were to return to the Gaza Strip, Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other terrorist groups would not disappear.

This is precisely what Hamas wants, a weak Palestinian authority that would manage the day-to-day affairs of the Palestinians and pay salaries to tens of thousands of employees, while the Islamist movement and its allies continue to smuggle weapons and prepare for the next war with Israel.

Such a scenario would only strengthen Hamas: it would absolve it of it responsibilities toward the residents of Gaza Strip by laying the burden on the Palestinian Authority.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh in Gaza, in February 2007, before Hamas seized total control of Gaza. (Image source: MaanImages)

Those who believe that the reinstatement of the Palestinian Authority [PA] in the Gaza Strip would destroy or undermine Hamas and end rocket attacks on Israel are living under an illusion.

The talk about restoring PA control over the Gaza Strip was first raised during the indirect cease-fire talks between Israel and Hamas in Cairo.

The Egyptians made clear during the talks that they would like to see PA President Mahmoud Abbas and his forces reassume control over the Gaza Strip. One proposal called for deploying security officers belonging to Abbas's "Presidential Guard" along the border between the Gaza Strip and Egypt.

The Egyptian proposal has won the backing of the U.S. Administration, many European governments and some Arab countries, including Jordan, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

Abbas, who lost the Gaza Strip to Hamas in the summer of 2007, has thus far refrained from publicly commenting on these reports.

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The Beheading of James Foley and Other Unintended Consequences

by Shoshana Bryen  •  August 21, 2014 at 4:30 am

Both the president and Mr. Kerry took pains to sever ISIS from the religion of Islam. But ISIS speaks precisely in Islamic terms and holds itself out to be authentic Islam.

The goals of Hamas and the goals of ISIS, to create a society on its own principles -- "ugly, savage, inexplicable, nihilistic and valueless evil," to quote Mr. Kerry -- are the same.

Spot the differences: Hamas or ISIS? Above, members of ISIS in Gaza. (Image source: ISIS YouTube video)

There is a reason the American military asks of its civilian commanders, "Don't tell us what to do, tell us what you want done." Giving the military an executable military mission to accomplish is the most important responsibility of civilian command. A strategic plan helps the military respond quickly to the unintended consequences that result from every mission, without sliding into incremental and often unplanned escalation.

President Obama has dispatched up to 800 American soldiers and authorized more than 90 air strikes with a general idea of our "humanitarian" responsibilities, not our strategic interests. (That did not work too well in Libya.) Mr. Obama even characterized as "humanitarian" U.S. air support for Kurdish peshmerga and Iraqi troops to prevent ISIS from controlling the Mosul Dam.

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ISIS is to America as Hamas is to Israel

by Alan M. Dershowitz  •  August 20, 2014 at 5:01 pm

President Barack Obama has rightfully condemned the ISIS beheading of American James Foley in the strongest terms. This is what he said:

"There has to be a common effort to extract this cancer so it does not spread. There has to be a clear rejection of the kind of a nihilistic ideologies. One thing we can all agree on is group like (ISIS) has no place in the 21st century. Friends and allies around the world, we share a common security a set of values opposite of what we saw yesterday. We will continue to confront this hateful terrorism and replace it with a sense of hope and stability."

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Anti-Semitism in Britain: "Sit Up and Take Notice"

by George Igler  •  August 20, 2014 at 5:00 am

"There is a direct link between politicians saying things and people being emboldened to go and attack Jews." — Jonathan Arkush, Vice-President, UK Board of Deputies.

It is never the person who commits these sorts of crimes that is held morally responsible by Britain's media or politicians. That honor is reserved for a nation over 2,000 miles away, Israel.

What if Christians objecting to the genocide being carried out by ISIS in Iraq, say, went around in mobs violently menacing Muslim businesses?

Empty shelves in the kosher section of a Sainsbury's supermarket in London, after management removed the kosher products, August 16, 2014. When asked about the removal, a staff member stated "We support Free Gaza". (Image source: Facebook/C. Appleby)

A striking feature of the rising tide of anti-Semitism in Britain is the silence with which the country's leaders are choosing to respond to a growing climate of hatred and intimidation, directed not only at Jews themselves, but increasingly anything remotely Jewish.

According to a report published in July by the Community Security Trust, a charity established to ensure the safety of the Jewish community in 1994, even though four out of every five anti-Semitic attacks usually take place "in the main Jewish centers of Greater London and Greater Manchester," violent assaults against Jews and symbols of Judaism are also now taking place nationwide.

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Has the West Made the next Gaza War Inevitable?

by Trevor Norwitz  •  August 20, 2014 at 4:00 am

In this photo posted to Twitter by The Wall Street Journal's Nick Casey (and since deleted), a Hamas spokesman uses a room in Gaza's Shifa Hospital for a filmed interview, while seated in front of a huge photo of a bomb crater.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon is right to say that, "children killed in their sleep ... is an affront to all of us, a source of universal shame." No-one can be unmoved by the pictures out of Gaza: the loss of life, the carnage, the anguish and fear in the faces of women and children.

It is heart breaking. But he is wrong to blame Israel, especially in such injudicious terms. He, and many others in positions of power and influence, do a terrible disservice to humanity, to the cause of international peace and security, and to the Palestinian people (not to mention the Israeli people), by not stating unequivocally what they know to be the truth: that overwhelming responsibility for the mayhem in Gaza rests with Hamas (a part of the Palestinian national unity government).

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Was Israel Justified in Going after Hamas Terrorist Tunnels?

by Alan M. Dershowitz  •  August 19, 2014 at 12:00 pm

Hand grenades, rocket-propelled grenades and launchers, and rifle ammunition found inside a tunnel dug from Gaza into Israel near Kibbutz Sufa, July 17, 2014. (Image source: IDF)

The key question—both legally and morally—in evaluating Israel's recent military actions is whether the Israeli government was justified in ordering ground troops into Gaza to destroy the Hamas tunnels. This question is important because most of the deaths—among Palestinian civilians, Hamas terrorists and Israeli soldiers—came about after Israeli ground troops attacked the tunnels.

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The Gaza War: Appearance vs. Reality

by Louis René Beres  •  August 19, 2014 at 5:00 am

Why is Hamas putting its weapons in the middle of homes, schools, hospitals and mosques in the first place?

Palestinian violence has been persistent in violating all rules of engagement, despite the signed Oslo II Interim Agreement of 1995, Article XIV of which states that the West Bank and the Gaza Strip shall be completely demilitarized.

Israeli soldiers inspect a concrete-reinforced tunnel that was dug by Hamas from Gaza to Israel, in preparation for a terror attack, August 3, 2014. (Image source: IDF)

Now that the dust has begun to settle in Gaza after Israel's Operation Protective Edge, it is again easy to feel sorry for the beleaguered Palestinians. As everyone knows who looks at The New York Times and CNN, the lingering images are incontestably painful, and continue to look "asymmetrical" and "disproportionate."

How could Hamas have been the aggressor when so many more Arabs than Israelis were killed? Surely the side with greater civilian losses must always be in the right. How could it be otherwise?

The people of Gaza (together with those many Israelis still forced to live under terrorist rocket attacks) are indeed victims of regional violence. But their victimization was not caused by any outside enemy. On the contrary, Palestinian suffering remains the direct result of a criminal Hamas leadership. Why is Hamas putting its weapons in the middle of homes, schools, hospitals and mosques in the first place?

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Why Jordan Doesn't Want More Palestinians

by Khaled Abu Toameh  •  August 18, 2014 at 5:00 am

By mistreating the Palestinians and depriving them of their basic rights, Jordan and other Arab countries are driving them into the open arms of extremists, especially Islamist groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas.

Jordan, Lebanon and Syria can continue their practices against Palestinians without having to worry about the responses of the international community or the media. No one is going to take to the streets of European and American cities to condemn Arabs for mistreating Arabs.

The "Cyber City" refugee camp in Jordan, where a number of Palestinians are being held. (Image source: ICRC)

It is no secret that many Arab countries despise Palestinians and subject them to apartheid laws and strict security measures that deny them most basic rights.

The mistreatment of Palestinians at the hands of their Arab brothers is an issue that is rarely mentioned in the mainstream media in the West. Most journalists prefer to look the other way when a story lacks an anti-Israel perspective.

A story is big only when it is Israel that arrests, kills, or deports.

When Arab countries such as Jordan, Syria and Lebanon move against Palestinians, however, foreign journalists choose to bury their heads in the sand. Such has been the case with Jordan and its mistreatment of the kingdom's Palestinian majority.

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Why I Support Israel

by David Draiman  •  August 18, 2014 at 4:00 am

There is no distinction between "anti-Zionists" and anti-Semites. They are chanting, "Death to the Jews." They are not singling out the Israeli army or government, so let's just have you take your masks off, shall we?

Hamas, however, always targets civilians -- always. What if such a threat were aimed at your family? Your wife? Your son?

"Israel was founded on land stolen from the Palestinian people." FALSE.

Palestinian children of all ages are openly taught to hate. Above, a scene from a popular Palestinian children's TV program. (Image source: MEMRI)

For many weeks now I have struggled as to whether or not to defend the actions of Israel in its current battle against the terrorist organization Hamas.

Blessed with a beautiful family, and looking into the eyes of my beloved son, your world takes on a very different perspective. It is easy to fear, as I'm sure many of my colleagues do, that I could be putting my family at risk and open myself up to attacks --verbal and otherwise.

I have just returned from my brother's wedding in Jerusalem. The were lucky enough to have the wedding take place during another short-lived cease-fire, which was of course purposefully and intentionally broken by Hamas, again, just as I was leaving the country.

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Islamic State: "We Will Take Spain Back"

by Soeren Kern  •  August 17, 2014 at 5:00 am

Calls to reconquer al-Andalus are becoming more frequent and more strident.

"Clearly Spain forms part of the strategic objectives of global jihad. We are not the only ones but we are in their sights." — Spanish Interior Minister Jorge Fernández Díaz.

A tweeted photo of an Islamic State supporter holding the IS black flag of jihad in front of Aljafería Palace in Zaragoza.

Radical Muslims in Spain have launched a social media campaign aimed at generating support for the jihadist group Islamic State [IS].

The campaign involves posters that include images of famous Spanish landmarks and monuments emblazoned with Arabic slogans such as, "We are all the Islamic State" and "Long Live the Islamic State."

One poster includes an image of the medieval Islamic Aljafería Palace in the Spanish city of Zaragoza and the black flag associated with the IS. Another uses an image of the famous La Concha beach in the Basque city of San Sebastián. Yet another includes an image of the statue of Jesus Christ on Monte Urgull in San Sebastián, with the Arabic words "Al-Andalus Country" instead of "Basque Country."

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Krugerplein, Again

by Martin Bosma  •  August 16, 2014 at 5:00 am

There are people who see Islamic immigration as a positive thing; that it creates "cultural enrichment" and "thriving immigrant neighborhoods." This is the vision of the liberal elites. There is also the reality.

A view of the apartment building in Amsterdam where Leah Rabinovitch lives. After hanging an Israeli flag, she was subjected to stone-throwing, a death threat and a firebombing. (Image source: AT5 News video screenshot)

Krugerplein, or Kruger Square, in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, is now the theatre of a series of incidents, starting with a woman who hung an Israeli flag outside her window. Muslims answered by displaying "Palestinian" flags.

The woman who hung the Israeli flag, Leah Rabinovitch, is originally from Mexico, and therefore probably may not have been aware of Islamic intolerance towards all things Jewish. Her neighborhood, however, is majority "non-western immigrants," meaning mostly Muslims.

She received death threats, had stones thrown through her windows, and had a Molotov-cocktail thrown at her home. The corporate owner of her apartment ordered her to remove the flag. Israel's flag after all, is considered a "provocation."

Checking at Krugerplein, last week, I counted seven "Palestinian" flags – flags which are never considered a provocation, of course.

The good news is that Israel's flag is back, again enjoying the Dutch sunlight.

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Britain's "Murky Anti-Semitic Subculture"

by Samuel Westrop  •  August 15, 2014 at 5:00 am

For Israel to receive any leniency in the Western press, more Jews have to be killed; meanwhile, countless Muslims, it seems, can slaughter each other without eliciting any condemnation on the streets of London or Paris.

Leading one of the largest anti-Israel protest marches on July 19 are Andy Slaughter MP (center, blue shirt) and George Galloway MP, next to Islamist activist Ismail Patel (second from left).

Recent anti-Israel protests have been attended by thousands across Europe. These protests come in opposition to attempts by Israeli forces to quell the rocket fire aimed at Israeli citizens by the Palestinian terror groups Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

In Britain, the protests in support of Hamas have been chiefly organized by a mixture of Sunni Islamist groups and groups aligned with the Socialist Workers Party. The attending protestors, though, seem to come from across the political and religious spectrums.

European hatred for the small Jewish state, or Jews in general, apparently continues to transcend all ideological differences to the point where pro-Assad activists can march alongside Sunni Islamists, while neo-Nazis stand shoulder to shoulder with Marxists.

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The Muslim Colonists: Forgotten Facts about the Arab-Israeli Conflict

by Ezequiel Doiny  •  August 15, 2014 at 4:45 am

The Yazidi in Iraq and the Christian Copts in Egypt are not "occupiers" or "settlers;" neither are the Jews in Israel. They are both victims of a common enemy that seems to want a Middle East free of non-Muslims.

The current Palestinian narrative is that all Muslims in Palestine are natives and all Jews are settlers. This narrative is false. There has been a small but almost continuous Jewish presence in Palestine since the destruction of Jerusalem by Rome two thousand years ago, and, as we will see, most of the Muslims living in Palestine when the state of Israel was declared in 1948 were Muslim colonists from other parts of the Ottoman Empire who had been resettled and living in Palestine for fewer than 60 years.

There are two important historical events usually overlooked in the Arab-Israeli conflict.

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Supporting Hamas is Anti-Semitic

by Alan M. Dershowitz  •  August 14, 2014 at 12:30 pm

Amin al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, inspects Bosnian volunteers of the Muslim Waffen-SS Handschar division in 1943.

Criticizing specific Israeli policies is certainly not anti-Semitic. Indeed many Israelis are critical of some of their nation's policies. But support for Hamas is anti-Semitic, because Hamas' policies and actions are based, at their core, on Jew-hatred. Yet many prominent individuals, some out of ignorance, many more with full knowledge of what they are doing, are overtly supporting Hamas. Some have even praised it. Others, like Italy's most famous philosopher, Gianni Vattimo, are trying to raise money and provide material support to this anti-Semitic terrorist organization. Still others refuse to condemn it, while condemning Israel in the strongest terms.

Here is some of what the Hamas Charter, which remains its governing principles, says about Jews:

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