Archive for Aunt Agatha

SHOCKA! Missiles Found In UN School For The Second Time!

Huh. How’d that happen?

For the second time in less than a week, rockets have been found in a school in Gaza operated by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, the body said.

“Today, in the course of the regular inspection of its premises, UNRWA discovered rockets hidden in a vacant school in the Gaza Strip,” the organization said in a statement issued Tuesday. “As soon as the rockets were discovered, UNRWA staff were withdrawn from the premises, and so we are unable to confirm the precise number of rockets. The school is situated between two other UNRWA schools that currently each accommodate 1,500 internally displaced persons.”

As it did the last time around when missiles were found in a school it operates, UNRWA said it “strongly and unequivocally condemns the group or groups responsible for this flagrant violation of the inviolability of its premises under international law.”

UNRWA, the UN agency charged with overseeing humanitarian efforts in Gaza, said it immediately “informed the relevant parties and is pursuing all possible measures for the removal of the objects in order to preserve the safety and security of the school.” The organization again pledged to launch a “comprehensive investigation into the circumstances surrounding this incident.”

An investigation? Excellent! That’ll do the trick.

- Aggie

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Abbas Family Leaves Judea and Samaria For Jordan

Does this mean that the terrorists in Judea and Samaria are gearing up?

Members of the family of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas have secretly left Ramallah for Jordan, according to the online newspaper Rai Al-Youm.

“For the first time and secretly, all the members of President Abbas’s family have left to their residence in Amman,” the report said.

It said that Abbas’s wife and grandchildren were among the family members who left Ramallah recently.

The newspaper said that Mohamed Shehadeh, who is in charge of Abbas’s security detail, has decided to beef up security around the PA president’s office and residence in Ramallah.

The departure of Abbas’s family and the tight security measures came in response to growing resentment among Palestinians with the PA president and his policies in wake of the current war between Israel and Hamas.

Over the past two weeks, many Palestinians have accused Abbas of failing to display strong leadership in light of the Israeli military operation. Some have gone as far as accusing him of “collusion” with Israel and Egypt.

I bet they start firing rockets from Ramallah.

- Aggie

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Part Of ObamaCare Illegal

President vows to ignore ruling

In a potentially crippling blow to Obamacare, a federal appeals court panel declared Tuesday that government subsidies worth billions of dollars that helped 4.7 million people buy insurance on HealthCare.gov are illegal.
The 2-1 ruling said such subsidies can be granted only to people who bought insurance in an Obamacare exchange run by an individual state or the District of Columbia—not on the federally run exchange HealthCare.gov. The ruling relied on a close reading of the Affordable Care Act.

“Section 36B plainly makes subsidies available in the Exchanges established by states,” wrote Senior Circuit Judge Raymond Randolph in his majority opinion in the case known as Halbig v. Burwell, where he was joined by Judge Thomas Griffith.

“We reach this conclusion, frankly, with reluctance. At least until states that wish to can set up their own Exchanges, our ruling will likely have significant consequences both for millions of individuals receiving tax credits through federal Exchanges and for health insurance markets more broadly.”

In his dissent, Judge Harry Edwards, who called the case a “not-so-veiled attempt to gut” Obamacare, wrote that the judgment of the majority “portends disastrous consequences.”

Indeed, the 72-page decision threatens to unleash a cascade of effects that could seriously compromise Obamacare’s goals of compelling people to get health insurance, and helping them afford it.

White House will ignore:

The Obama administration said it will ask the full U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to reverse the panel’s decision, which for now does not have the rule of law.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest said the ruling—for now—”does not have any practical impact” on premium subsidies issued to HealthCare.gov enrollees now.”

“We are confident” that the ruling will be overturned, Earnest said. “We are confident in the legal position we have . . . the Department of Justice will litigate these claims through the federal court system.”

Earnest said “it was obvious” that Congress intended subsidies, or tax credits, to be issued to Obamacare enrollees regardless of what kind of exchange they used to buy insurance.

Our Tin-Pot-Dictator-In-Chief Has Spoken!

Also, Professor Larry Tribe of Harvard has this to say:

President Obama’s old Harvard Law professor, Laurence Tribe, said that he “wouldn’t bet the family farm” on Obamacare’s surviving the legal challenges to an IRS rule about who is eligible for subsidies that are currently working their way through the federal courts.

“I don’t have a crystal ball,” Tribe told the Fiscal Times. “But I wouldn’t bet the family farm on this coming out in a way that preserves Obamacare.”

- Aggie

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Terrorists Land Missile Near Ben Gurion Airport

Flights in being cancelled

Delta Air Lines is canceling all flights to Israel until further notice after a rocket landed near Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport.

A Delta Boeing 747 from New York was flying over the Mediterranean headed for Tel Aviv on Tuesday when it turned around and flew to Paris instead. Flight 468 had 273 passengers and 17 crew on board.
U.S. Airways also suspended service to Israel Tuesday.
White House spokesman said the Federal Aviation Administration had not as yet not issued a “NOTAM,” or Notice to Airmen, which would warn airlines of hazards along a flight route or at a destination.
Israeli police said a rocket fired from Gaza landed near the airport, damaging a house and wounding one Israeli.

Unfortunately, I think that Israel needs to go to all out war. They can’t have this kind of thing happening, and the Palestinians seem intent on making it happen. They need to retake Gaza.

- Aggie

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Arab Terrorists In IDF Uniforms Attempt To Infiltrate Through Tunnel

They each have their 72 virgins now

This morning’s tunnel infiltration by two Hamas squads underlines the threat posed to the South, OC Southern Command, Maj.-Gen. Sami Turgeman, said Monday.

Dozens of terrorists in military uniform emerged from a tunnel, and were successfully stopped by the military, Turgeman added.

Uncovering the tunnels is a complex and challenging task, requiring intelligence and technology, he added.

The IDF’s work in destroying tunnels, both inside Gaza and cross-border tunnels, “is disturbing the enemy,” which spent years digging them,Turgeman said.

Two terrorist attack cells entered Israel from northern Gaza via a smuggling tunnel on Monday morning.

They were identified by IDF lookouts, and an aircraft was dispatched to intercept them. The first cell was struck from the air, and ten of its members were killed.

The second cell fired an anti-tank missile at a military vehicle.

The Shin Bet sent an alert to the IDF hours before the attack, warning of intentions of terrorists in northern Gaza to infiltrate the country.

This is interesting on so many levels. First of all, many of us have forgotten that Yasir Arafat kept boxes of IDF uniforms in his compound in Ramallah. Very peace-y reasons for that, I’m sure. So this tactic has been there forever, but combined with tunnels it is even more dangerous.

Secondly, Shin Bet (internal security, sort of like the FBI I suppose) warned that this was going to happen. This means that there are some not-insane Palestinians who are informing. This fall, in the US, the documentary, The Green Prince, will be shown. Everyone, everyone should see that film. In it you will see how the son of the Hamas commander in Ramallah decided that Hamas was evil and proceeded to help stop suicide terror attacks during the second intifada (guerrilla war). It is fascinating. We should have bloodthirsty liberal movie night and all go to see it in our respective cities and then talk about it here.

- Aggie

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Now That The Jews Are Out Of Iraq, Time To Eliminate The Christians

The population of Christians has dropped by more than a million in the past decade

In a region where Christians predate Muslims by centuries, over one million Christians have been killed or have had to flee because of jihadi persecution, while America is basically standing by and watching. This is the sad news that Breitbart’s National Security Editor and one of the world’s leading experts on asymmetric warfare, Dr. Sebastian Gorka, brought to Breitbart News Saturday, hosted by Editor in Chief Alex Marlow on Sirius XM Patriot Radio.
Dr. Gorka explained that “in the last 48 hours, ISIS, which is now called the Islamic State in Mosul, has painted the letter “N” for Nazarene on the houses of all the surviving Christians in the city. ISIS has basically given an ultimatum to all the Christians left: You can either flee or convert to Islam, or we will kill you.”
Gorka points out that, over the last 20 years, America has stood up around the world to save Muslims. “Whether it was to save the Muslims in Bosnia or the Albanians, Kosovars, and Muslims in Serbia, it is now time for a humanitarian operation to save the remaining Christians in Iraq,” he said. “It is time for the American people and our representatives to do something for our co-religionists remaining in the Middle East.”
Marlow observed that the blatant religious cleansing is horrifying and asked Gorka: “Why is it that the mainstream press is not interested in the story?” Gorka first responded by saying “Let’s face it, this is a Christian version of the Holocaust and nothing less.”

Believe it or not, NPR had a story on this today. I can’t imagine why this isn’t getting more media attention.

-Aggie

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Jewish Ethics Vs. Reality

I’ve been reading a lot about Jewish ethics lately, and listening to a lot of friends who are uncomfortable with Israel’s need for self-defense. (To our non-Jewish readers, none of this will make sense, sorry).

Some of the very religious among us believe that if we practice enough mitzvot, we can heal the world (tikkun olam). This will bring the Messiah sooner. Some even blame the victim for disasters that befall them, because if everyone tried harder to be even gooder, why then the hearts of the evil people of the world would melt. That would bring on the Messiah, whether he is understood as a physical presence among us or as simple peace and grace.

In the secular world, this plays out in some variation of old Beatles songs: Give Peace A Chance, say, or even Neville Chamberlain’s pronouncement that, “There will be peace in our time.” The two sides, the religious pacifists and the Leftist pacifists all had a dollop of education about tzedakah as kids, and all want to be good.

Gentle Reader, none of this makes sense, right? I mean, surely it is good to do kind things for others, and surely we all want peace (even the bloodthirstiest among us want peace). But in the real world, both sides must want that. And one side splitting hairs about the goodest possible way to be gooder, as the other side arms with better weapons and uses the construction material that the Goodies provided to create fortified tunnels… well, you see where I’m going with this, don’t you?

I believe that the pacifist wing of the Jewish world needs to come to grips with the simple truth that we cannot control the behavior of others. We can be very good, we can even devote our lives to goodness, but we need a honking big army to protect us while doing so.

- Aggie

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What Is The Difference?

Charles Krauthammer lays it all out in simple language

Israel accepts an Egyptian-proposed Gaza cease-fire; Hamas keeps firing. Hamas deliberately aims rockets at civilians; Israel painstakingly tries to avoid them, actually telephoning civilians in the area and dropping warning charges, so-called roof knocking.

“Here’s the difference between us,” explains the Israeli prime minister. “We’re using missile defense to protect our civilians, and they’re using their civilians to protect their missiles.”

And what is the US doing? The US is sending money to the people who are using civilian human shields. Not even Egypt will do that.

Rarely does international politics present a moment of such moral clarity. Yet we routinely hear this Israel-Gaza fighting described as a morally equivalent “cycle of violence.” This is absurd. What possible interest can Israel have in cross-border fighting? Everyone knows Hamas set off this mini-war. And everyone knows the proudly self-declared raison d’etre of Hamas: the eradication of Israel and its Jews.

Apologists for Hamas attribute the blood lust to the Israeli occupation and blockade. Occupation? Does no one remember anything? It was less than 10 years ago that worldwide television showed the Israeli army pulling die-hard settlers off synagogue roofs in Gaza as Israel uprooted its settlements, expelled its citizens, withdrew its military and turned every inch of Gaza over to the Palestinians. There was not a soldier, not a settler, not a single Israeli left in Gaza.

And there was no blockade. On the contrary. Israel wanted this new Palestinian state to succeed. To help the Gaza economy, Israel gave the Palestinians its 3,000 greenhouses that had produced fruit and flowers for export. It opened border crossings and encouraged commerce.

The whole idea was to establish the model for two states living peacefully and productively side by side. No one seems to remember that, simultaneous with the Gaza withdrawal, Israel dismantled four smaller settlements in the northern West Bank as a clear signal of Israel’s desire to leave the West Bank as well and thus achieve an amicable two-state solution.

This is not ancient history. This was nine years ago.

True, Dr. Krauthammer, but people are very, very stupid. And they are bigoted against Jews, which makes the stupidity easier to explain.

And how did the Gaza Palestinians react to being granted by the Israelis what no previous ruler, neither Egyptian, nor British, nor Turkish, had ever given them — an independent territory? First, they demolished the greenhouses. Then they elected Hamas. Then, instead of building a state with its attendant political and economic institutions, they spent the better part of a decade turning Gaza into a massive military base, brimming with terror weapons, to make ceaseless war on Israel.

Where are the roads and rail, the industry and infrastructure of the new Palestinian state? Nowhere. Instead, they built mile upon mile of underground tunnels to hide their weapons and, when the going gets tough, their military commanders. They spent millions importing and producing rockets, launchers, mortars, small arms, even drones. They deliberately placed them in schools, hospitals, mosques and private homes to better expose their own civilians. (Just Thursday, the U.N. announced that it found 20 rockets in a Gaza school.) And from which they fire rockets at Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.

Why? The rockets can’t even inflict serious damage, being almost uniformly intercepted by Israel’s Iron Dome anti-missile system. Even West Bank leader Mahmoud Abbas has asked: “What are you trying to achieve by sending rockets?”

It makes no sense. Unless you understand, as Tuesday’s Post editorial explained, that the whole point is to draw Israeli counterfire.

This produces dead Palestinians for international television. Which is why Hamas perversely urges its own people not to seek safety when Israel drops leaflets warning of an imminent attack.

I’m just going to give you all of this, because it is so accurate:

To deliberately wage war so that your own people can be telegenically killed is indeed moral and tactical insanity. But it rests on a very rational premise: Given the Orwellian state of the world’s treatment of Israel (see: the U.N.’s grotesque Human Rights Council), fueled by a mix of classic anti-Semitism, near-total historical ignorance and reflexive sympathy for the ostensible Third World underdog, these eruptions featuring Palestinian casualties ultimately undermine support for Israel’s legitimacy and right to self-defense.

In a world of such Kafkaesque ethical inversions, the depravity of Hamas begins to make sense. This is a world in which the Munich massacre is a movie and the murder of Klinghoffer is an opera — both deeply sympathetic to the killers. This is a world in which the U.N. ignores humanity’s worst war criminals while incessantly condemning Israel, a state warred upon for 66 years that nonetheless goes to extraordinary lengths to avoid harming the very innocents its enemies use as shields.

It’s to the Israelis’ credit that amid all this madness they haven’t lost their moral scruples. Or their nerve. Those outside the region have the minimum obligation, therefore, to expose the madness and speak the truth. Rarely has it been so blindingly clear.

I’ve noticed something surprising here in Massachusetts. The people that would typically be blaming Israel are out there, but in fewer numbers. I assume that this is because just over a year ago we experienced terrorism first-hand at the Boston Marathon. Given how short memories are, I don’t expect this effect to continue, but it is noteworthy. The real haters don’t change, but the middle is less impressed with a terror group that sends thousands of rockets into towns and cities.

- Aggie

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480 French Jews Move To Israel

In the middle of the war, 480 French Jews arrive in Israel

Three days after a mob surrounded a Parisian synagogue, trapping worshipers inside and leading to a brawl between pro-Palestinian demonstrators and members of the local Jewish community, hundreds of French immigrants arrived at Ben-Gurion Airport on Wednesday to start new lives in Israel.

Waving flags and chanting “Am Yisrael hai” (the nation of Israel lives), the 430 French olim filed past a sign for a bomb shelter into the Immigration and Absorption Ministry reception area to listen to welcoming speeches and, afterward, to get down to the bureaucratic business of filling out the paperwork to become Israeli citizens.

Many of them will be moving to areas of the country under the heaviest missile fire, including Ashdod and Ashkelon, Jewish Agency officials said. Despite the conflict, however, the immigrants appeared sanguine and unafraid.

The bombing “doesn’t bother me,” immigrant David Zafran explained. “The main thing is to be here.”

“It’s more dangerous for Jews in France,” agreed Jeremy Tawil, a Tel Aviv-bound Parisian. “I am not scared.
There is a God.”

french jews
New Israeli citizens

I think that they probably are safer in Israel than in France. First of all, Israel is competent; they are capable of protecting them. And secondly, Israel wants to protect them. The French don’t seem especially interested.

- Aggie

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Antisemitism At The Washington Post

- Aggie

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Dershowitz On Hamas’s “Dead Baby Strategy”

Media has bloody hands

By emphasizing the comparative body counts without providing the reasons for the disparity, the media plays into the hands of Hamas, and encourages that terrorist organization to continue to pursue its dead baby strategy.

The media loves to count the dead bodies on each side of a conflict. It’s much easier to count that to explain. Hamas knows this. That’s why they employ what has come to be known as “the dead baby strategy”.

Hamas’ strategy since Israel left Gaza in 2005 has been exactly the same. The media response has been exactly the same. And Hamas will continue to employ a strategy that causes many Palestinian civilians to die as long as the media keeps up its thoughtless body count.

Here’s the way it works: Hamas deliberately fires its rockets from densely populated civilian areas, using hospitals, disability centers, mosques and schools as launching sites. This puts Israel to the tragic choice of either allowing the rockets to endanger its civilians or to destroy the rocket launchers, thereby risking civilian casualties among Hamas’ human shields. Often Israel chooses to forgo attacking military targets, so as not to put Palestinian civilians at risk. Sometimes it has no choice, because the rocket fire against its civilians is persistent. Palestinian civilians are killed despite Israel’s best efforts precisely because Hamas wants civilians to be killed, especially if these civilians are children, women or the elderly. Hamas stands ready to parade these human shields in front of the media which is eager to show the dead and count the bodies.

Hamas could easily reduce the death and injury toll among its civilians, by simply allowing them to go underground into tunnels and shelters which abound throughout Gaza. But Hamas has a deliberate policy of refusing to allow civilians to enter the tunnels or shelters. They reserve these places of refuge for their fighters and commanders, which explains why so few Hamas fighters have been killed. If Hamas were to reverse its policy and allow civilians into the shelters while requiring its fighters to stay above ground, the ratio of civilians to fighters killed would dramatically change. That is why in each of the wars between Hamas and Israel there have been more Palestinian than Israeli civilian deaths and injuries. It is part of Hamas’ dead baby strategy and it works, because the media facilitates it.

I wonder if the NY Times or NPR will cover this?

- Aggie

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Should Israel Accept A 10 Year Truce, Based On Allowing Hamas To Re-Arm?

Or should they invade Gaza?

First, welcome home BTL!

Ok, here’s the Hamas proposition: Release all the re-arrested Schalit prisoners (one of whom has gone on to kill a policeman), open the borders, yadda, yadda, yadda.

And on the Israeli Right, here’s the proposal:

Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman on Wednesday reiterated his stance that only a full ground incursion in Gaza would restore peace to Israel.
Speaking in Ashkelon, where he visited injured Israelis at Barzilai Medical Center, the foreign minister said, “Only a full ground incursion in Gaza will secure a peaceful summer for our children in the South.”

“In the Gaza [disengagement] we gave [PA President Mahmoud] Abbas the keys to Gaza,” said Liberman, pointing out that the result has been the thousands of rockets launched at Israel since that time.

“What I understand form the international community over the years is that it has wanted Israel to go back to the 1967 lines,” he stated, “Which we did.”

At Barzilai Medical Center, Liberman stressed, “There’s no argument, we want to ensure citizens’ security. We’re not trying to build towns there [in Gaza], we just want security.”

The statements by Liberman were followed by Norwegian Foreign Minister Børge Brende, who said he wanted to stop suffering both in Israel and Gaza and that he is very concerned about the situation.

Aggie, what do you think? you ask. Hmmm. Let me cogitate a bit. Should Israel open Gaza for ten years, giving Hamas adequate time to built a huge arsenal? Even if they didn’t use it that way, should Israel allow Hamas to win with these tactics? Hmmm. Tempting as it sounds, I guess I have to decline.

Should Israel invade Gaza and attempt to find where the weapons are hidden? Sounds reasonable to me. But I fully understand if they don’t. First of all, it will cost soldiers’ lives. And secondly, it give the world community a chance to pounce. They have tried, (NPR has been especially god-awful), but so far they have bitten their collective, stinky tongue.

So I guess I don’t have an opinion on that one, but I support them in any decision they make. This is important: We don’t live there. We don’t live under constant threat of war or terrorism. I don’t think it is becoming, wise, or helpful for us to make pronouncements on what they should or should not do from the comfort and safety of the local cafe, breakfast joint, gym, or shopping mall. Or living room. Because, let’s face it. We’ve never lived it and we’ve never put our own kids on the line to protect ourselves from those monsters in our homeland. We experienced September 11th, and our response was two large-scale invasions. But prior to September 11th, we didn’t see it coming. We were innocents in the woods, completely shocked by the big bad wolves. Israelis see it coming at them each and every day, whether they are at war or not. And they’ve figured our a brilliant strategy to handle it. So whatever they do it’s good by me.

- Aggie

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