How Israeli Arab Parliamentarians Betray Their Constituency

Basel Ghattas, an Arab Knesset member, participated in the recent flotilla intended to break Israel’s blockade of Hamas. In doing so, writes Khaled Abu Toameh, he only harmed the interests of those who voted for him:

In recent years, some Knesset members have devoted much of their time and efforts to helping the Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip at the expense of their own constituents in Israel. The actions and rhetoric of [these] Knesset members have also caused huge damage to relations between Jews and Arabs in Israel. The biggest losers are the Israeli Arabs, whose representatives in the Knesset have done little to improve their living conditions. . . .

It was hard this week to find Arab Israelis who saw anything positive in Ghattas’s decision to sail aboard a ship to the Gaza Strip. In fact, many did not hesitate privately to criticize the decision. . . . However, most of the critics were afraid to go on the record because they feared accusations of being “traitors” for speaking out against one of their representatives in the Knesset. . . .

It is time for Arab Israelis to distance themselves from those representatives who are acting against their interests and damaging relations between Jews and Arabs. If there are some Knesset members who wish to devote their time and energy to helping the Palestinians, they should consider moving to the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

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Read more at Gatestone

More about: Gaza, Israel & Zionism, Israeli Arabs, Israeli politics, Knesset, Palestinians

How European Fecklessness Encourages the Islamic Republic’s Assassination Campaign

In September, Cypriot police narrowly foiled a plot by an Iranian agent to murder five Jewish businessman. This was but one of roughly a dozen similar operations that Tehran has conducted in Europe since 2015—on both Israeli or Jewish and American targets—which have left three dead. Matthew Karnitschnig traces the use of assassination as a strategic tool to the very beginning of the Islamic Republic, and explains its appeal:

In the West, assassination remains a last resort (think Osama bin Laden); in authoritarian states, it’s the first (who can forget the 2017 assassination by nerve agent of Kim Jong-nam, the playboy half-brother of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un, upon his arrival in Kuala Lumpur?). For rogue states, even if the murder plots are thwarted, the regimes still win by instilling fear in their enemies’ hearts and minds. That helps explain the recent frequency. Over the course of a few months last year, Iran undertook a flurry of attacks from Latin America to Africa.

Whether such operations succeed or not, the countries behind them can be sure of one thing: they won’t be made to pay for trying. Over the years, the Russian and Iranian regimes have eliminated countless dissidents, traitors, and assorted other enemies (real and perceived) on the streets of Paris, Berlin, and even Washington, often in broad daylight. Others have been quietly abducted and sent home, where they faced sham trials and were then hanged for treason.

While there’s no shortage of criticism in the West in the wake of these crimes, there are rarely real consequences. That’s especially true in Europe, where leaders have looked the other way in the face of a variety of abuses in the hopes of reviving a deal to rein in Tehran’s nuclear-weapons program and renewing business ties.

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Read more at Politico

More about: Europe, Iran, Israeli Security, Terrorism