On the Day of Remembrance, Don’t Forget That Hamas Uses the Bodies of the Dead as Bargaining Chips

April 28 2020

During a ceasefire in the midst of the 2014 Gaza war, Hamas fighters ambushed an Israeli unit, killing the twenty-three-year-old officer Hadar Goldin. The terrorist group, knowing full well that the Jewish state will go to extreme lengths not only to free captured soldiers, but also to bring back the bodies of those killed in action, has since then held Goldin’s corpse hostage. On the occasion of Yom Hazikaron—Israel’s day of remembrance of those who have fallen in its wars—his twin brother and fellow officer Tzur Goldin recalls Hadar’s fate, along with that of Oron Shaul.

On Memorial Day, the value we must recall above all others, is that of our common duty to fight for the return of every soldier and civilian in captivity, dead or alive. Soldiers go into battle, knowingly endangering their lives, and they think of their families at home and wonder how they would cope if something were to happen. Yet soldiers also derive strength from the knowledge that their brothers in arms will do all it takes in order to bring them back to Israel if they are injured, or if the worst should happen.

Whether such soldiers are serving in the Gazan districts of Rafah and Shajiah, or inside Lebanon, or elsewhere, the notion that Israel will retrieve her soldiers, come what may, is invaluable to members of the IDF. The importance of that value must never be forgotten or reduced. It is the value that my family is fighting to uphold today.

Terror organizations have [a brutal strategy]: they kidnap soldiers and civilians and exploit them as assets so that Israel pays a pyrrhic price, time and again, in order to obtain their release. They [thus] force Israel to choose between two types of moral injustice: leave soldiers on the battlefield—effectively the case for Hadar—or release thousands of terrorists in exchange for the return of our soldiers.

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Read more at Times of Israel

More about: IDF, Protective Edge, Yom Ha-Zikaron

How China Equips the Islamic Republic to Repress Its People

In its dedication to bringing totalitarianism into the 21st century, the Chinese Communist party has developed high-tech forms of surveillance using facial-recognition software, a vast system of “social credit,” and careful control over its subjects’ cellular phones. Even stricter and more invasive measures are applied to the Uyghurs of the northwestern part of the country. Beijing is also happy to export its innovations in tyranny to allies like Iran and Russia. Playing a key role in these advances is a nominally private company called Tiandy Technologies. Craig Singleton describes its activities:

Both Tiandy testimonials and Chinese-government press releases advertise the use of the company’s products by Chinese officials to track and interrogate Uyghur Muslims and other ethnic minorities in China’s Xinjiang province. According to human-rights groups, Chinese authorities also employ Tiandy products, such as “tiger chairs,” to torture Uyghurs and other minorities.

Iran has long relied on China to augment its digital surveillance capabilities, and Tehran was an early adopter of Beijing’s “social-credit” system, which it wields to assess citizens’ behavior and trustworthiness. . . . Iranian government representatives have publicized plans to leverage smart technologies, including AI-powered face recognition, to maintain regime stability and neutralize dissent. Enhanced cooperation with China is central to those efforts.

At present, Tiandy is not subject to U.S. sanctions or export controls. In light of Tiandy’s operations in both Xinjiang and Iran, policymakers should consider removing the company, its owner, and stakeholders from the international financial system and global supply chains.

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Read more at FDD

More about: China, Human Rights, Iran, Totalitarianism, U.S. Foreign policy