Thursday, August 31, 2006

We Can Agree - Bring Our Boys Home!

Israelis can stand together, united and determined. Tonight in Kikar Rabin (Tel Aviv) at 730pm, we'll see a huge display of support for our kidnapped IDF soldiers, Gilad Shalit, Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev. I encourage all Israel-based KICreaders to go and join the 100000s of others.

There's are a few things all Israelis agree on. Hear my view in the KICaudio post below.

this is an audio post - click to play

Monday, August 28, 2006

Ron Arad alive?

With the return of kidnapped IDF soldiers scolding hot on the mind of every Israeli, suddenly photos are revealed and a video appears and rumors are rife of a full video to show on Lebanese TV shortly. Is the most well-known of Israeli missing sons alive?

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Austrian Miracle Girl

A quite incredible true story broadcast on Sky News UK. You can watch the clip here and be amazed, saddened, angered and relieved. After being held for eight years in a basement in Austria, a teenage girl escapes and is remarkably reunited with her family.

It's stories like these that make you question humanity and yet thank G-d for small (and large!) mercies. When you see the father crying, one can't help but think of the tremendous pain and loss in our part of the world - of the Fox reporter and cameraman (a New Zealand citizen) held hostage currently by Gazan terrorists., for example.

Then of course I think of our Israeli soldiers (sons, brothers, husbands) who are, contrary to international law and all notions of human rights, being held, tortured no doubt, by Hamas or Nasrallah and their Iranian and Syrian cronies.

May we merit His mercy so that more families like these Austrians can live and laugh again.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Dead Sea Lessons

A day soaking in the minerals of the Dead Sea has taught me a thing or two about the good we must take from hard times and life's challenges. Listen to my evaluation of life after death...

this is a KICaudio post - click to play
And once you've listened, have a read of this - it perfectly illustrates what I was explaining in the above KICaudio post.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Mohammed, Horses & Heaven - 22nd August?

With Iran expected to give its response to the demands of the UN tomorrow, Tuesday 22nd August, some analysts have begun to play up the signifcance of Ahmadinejad's choice of date. This from Ha'aretz today:

While a response was required quickly, Tehran said that it would give its answer on August 22. Analysts originally explained the choice of dates as marking the month's end according to the Persian calendar.

However, the date has also led to speculation regarding its apocalyptic significance - this is the date on which Muslims commemorate Mohammed's ascention to heaven on a horse. The significance lies in the site where this supposedly took place: Jerusalem. The combination of the religious symbolism, the vitriolic statements of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad regarding the "surprises" his country is preparing, his messianic statements and beliefs in ridding Jerusalem of infidels, and the ongoing five-week-long military exercise have led some to attribute earth-shattering significance to this date.

DEBKAfile has had its run with this Aug 22nd Apocalyptic speculation too:

DEBKAfile’s intelligence sources report that information rated “highly credible” has reached US undercover agencies of a secret report presented to Iran’s supreme ruler Ali Khamenei by Abdollah Shabhazi, one of the heads of the Supreme National Security Council. He claims to expose a mega-terror plot against Jerusalem scheduled for August 22, which aims at killing large numbers of Jews, Arabs and Christians.

This atrocity will reportedly arm the United States and Israel with the pretext for hitting Iran’s nuclear installations, as well its capital, Tehran, and other big cities.

Shabhazi says the US and Israel need to launch a military campaign to restore the deterrent strength they lost in the Lebanon war.

The massive attack will reportedly focus on the Old City of Jerusalem and its eastern suburbs. The Iranian report claims that the plotters, who are not identified, are eager to recreate the divine white light whish spread over Jerusalem in the year 632. It does not rule out the use of a non-conventional weapon.

Any thoughts? In these days of no hand luggage flights...
Read more about Aug 22nd in this Haaretz article and in this Debka report

Sunday, August 20, 2006

UNIFIL & Lebanon unwilling - let's blame Israel!

The Europeans haven't turned up for duty and the Lebanese have made it clear that Hezbollah are their brothers-in-arms. It all makes the UN Resolution look like a bit of a joke in my mind. But maybe I'm a bit peculiar and in fact Israel still shouldn't have a right to stop the rearming of Hezbollah while world leaders and Lebanon decide which side of the 'war on terror' bed to get out of this morning.

Here's my audio view on the whole issue...

this is an audio post - click to play

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Jewish Hatred

Neturei Karta... arghh! We have tanks and F-16s, but how do we deal with Jews who spew forth more anti-Israel hatred than the average Iranian-backed Hezbollah boy? Read their latest filth and then dive straight in for more.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

And in the blue & white corner...

The Mike Tyson matches against Evander Holyfield always made a good Sunday afternoon's viewing in New Zealand. I can't help thinking that we've just witnessed a boxing match with all the twists and talk that could only possibly exist in the Middle East. Like so often in boxing, we're amazed at the decision of the ringside judges... and then we're shocked by the post-match interviews with the managers.

Hear my KICaudio analysis on the local boxing match that hurt us so much over the last month.

this is a KICaudio post - click to play

Monday, August 14, 2006

1 Wedding and 30 Funerals

As the region stands on the slippery doorstep to the Israel-Hizbollah ceasefire, my dancing at a Jerusalem wedding this evening had me contemplating far more than expected.

Have a listen to my thoughts on that uncomfortable Israeli fusion of mourning versus the need to continue life and to truly live.

this is an audio post - click to play

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Dershowitz & the United Nations

Jewish World Review July 26, 2006 / 1 Menachem-Av, 5766

How the UN legitimizes terrorists

By Alan M. Dershowitz

If the UN cannot or will not distinguish between terrorists who target civilians and a democracy that seeks to stop the terrorism while minimizing civilian casualties, it has become part of the problem, rather than part of the solution.

from ---

If anyone wonders why the UN has rendered itself worse than irrelevant in the Arab-Israeli conflict, all he or she need do is read UN Secretary General Kofi Annan's July 20 statement. Annan goes to great pains to suggest equal fault and moral equivalence between the rockets of Hezbollah and Hamas that specifically target innocent civilians and the self-defense efforts by Israel, which tries desperately, though not always successfully, to avoid causing civilian casualties. In his statement, Annan never condemns, or even mentions, terrorism, which is a root cause and precipitator of the conflict.

Even Annan was forced to acknowledge that "Hezbollah's provocative attack on July 12 was the trigger of this particular crisis"; that Hezbollah is "deliberate[ly] targeting ... Israeli population centers with hundreds of indiscriminate weapons"; and that Israel has the "right to defend itself under Article 51 of the UN charter." But he doesn't stop there. He goes out of his way to insist on equating Hezbollah's terrorists with Israeli military response, which he labels "disproportionate" and "collective punishment." He condemns both Hezbollah and Israel. He also criticizes Israel for its efforts at preventing Qassam rocket attacks against its civilian populations, noting that the Hamas rockets have produced no "casualties in the past month." (This, of course, is not for lack of trying.) He ignores Hamas' long history of terrorism against innocent civilians.

Annan then calls for an "immediate cessation of indiscriminate and disproportionate violence" on both sides, again suggesting a moral equivalence. Among the most immoral positions anyone can take is to suggest a moral equivalence between morally different actions.

Part of the goal of organizations like Hezbollah and Hamas is to gain moral legitimacy for their terrorist tactics by having them equated with the conventional military tactics used by democratic regimes. Only the morally obtuse or perverse cannot recognize the difference between a terrorist group that targets civilian population centers with anti-personnel weapons designed to maximize civilian casualties and a democracy that seeks to prevent terrorism by employing smart bombs designed to minimize civilian casualties.

Annan knows better than to suggest a moral equivalence. He is fully aware of the tactic employed by terrorists of launching their rockets from, and hiding behind, civilian shields, so as to make democracies have to kill some civilians to get at the terrorists.

But Annan heads an organization that is so anti-Israel that as the late Abba Eban, the early Israeli ambassador to the UN, once put it: "If Algeria proposed a resolution that the Earth was flat and that Israel has flattened it, it would pass by a vote of 120 to 3, with 27 abstentions."

Many such resolutions have been passed by the General Assembly, including the notorious one equating the Jewish national liberation movement with "racism." Other one-sided resolutions have been passed by the General Assembly legitimating terrorism. Only the U.S. veto — which does not operate in the UN General Assembly — has prevented one-sided resolutions by the Security Council.

If a space alien from a distant planet were to land at the UN, he would come away with the impression that Israel is not only the sole offender in the Middle East, but the worst offender in the entire world. He would single out Israel for condemnation and exclude it from membership on many UN bodies, on which Syria, Lebanon and Iran serve in positions of honor.

Annan himself has a long history of one-sided condemnations of Israel. In March 2004, Annan "strongly condemned" Israel's targeted killing of Sheik Ahmad Yassin, the terrorist leader of Hamas, without condemning Yassin for his murderous actions or his organization for the murder of Jewish civilians. In December 2003, Annan "strongly condemned" Israel's assault on a Palestinian refugee camp where two gunmen were thought to be hiding. And in 2005, he issued the most tepid of statements expressing "dismay" at threats by Iran's president to "eliminate" Israel, a member nation of the UN. The list goes on and on.

And even worse than the one-sided condemnations that ignore Hezbollah and Hamas are the numerous statements that perversely suggest moral equivalence.

The UN peacekeepers on the Lebanese border have turned out to be collaborators with Hezbollah, videotaping the Hezbollah kidnapping of three Israeli soldiers in 2000 and then refusing to release the video which could have helped in the rescue on the grounds that it might compromise their "neutrality."

This is a real test for the UN. If it cannot or will not distinguish between terrorists who target civilians and a democracy that seeks to stop the terrorism while minimizing civilian casualties, it has become part of the problem, rather than part of the solution.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Shavua Tov?

To the satisfaction of some and the dismay of others, the United Nations Security Council passed a ceasefire resolution on Friday night. Olmert's office expresses satisfaction at its wording. Yet does the resolution resolve any of the basic causes of the Israeli-Hizbullah conflict and where does that leave battered Israeli people and a capable IDF which is finally making progress?

Listen to the KICreport as recorded by Michael Lawrence shortly after Shabbat.

this is an audio post - click to play

Friday, August 11, 2006

KIC returns

After almost 8 weeks away from home, I am back at the KIC computer. I have been working full time for the Koby Mandell Foundation so time for KICing has been limited. I apologize to the faithful readers who were left KICless for so long.

Of course, there hasn't been a shortish of breaking news and controversy to keep you current when it comes to Israeli Current Affairs. Similarly, we've all had to work overtime to advocate strongly for Israel during this unwanted Hizbollah war.

From Friday, this KICblog will begin to broadcast again from Israel through KICaudio. We invite you to visit often, listen to my view on things and then leave us your comments.

Of course, you're always welcome to tell your friends about us so that they too can benefit from keeping it current - either here online or by inviting me to run a session for their group in Israel.

Let's continue to pray for better news,