Refuting Ilhan Omar’s Latest Libel of Israel

Nov. 12 2020

Last week, Congresswoman Ilhan Omar accused the Jewish state of “a grave crime” and a “violation of international law,” and implied that the U.S. by supporting it was “bankrolling ethnic cleansing.” She cited as evidence a report that a recent IDF operation had “demolished the homes of nearly 80 Palestinian Bedouins.” But both the original report and Omar’s framing of it misrepresent the facts. Adam Levick¸ analyzing a similar story that appeared in the Guardian, sets the record straight:

[The Bedouin] encampment is actually within Area C, the part of the West Bank (in the Jordan Valley) under full Israeli civil and military control per the Oslo Accords. . . . Additionally, the claim that the Bedouin in question are now “homeless” is most likely not accurate. Indeed, the BBC’s Yolande Knell acknowledged, in a recent report on Radio 4, that at least some of the Bedouin families in question are now living in donated tents north of the Jordan Valley.

Further, . . .  Israel’s Supreme Court ruled that its residents have no property rights in the location (i.e. the land does not belong to them). Moreover, previous Israeli court cases on the same issue were heard in 2011 and 2014, and the petitioners lost in all cases.

The Guardian reporter clearly made no effort to research the legal history of the Bedouin claims—information that helps put the story in proper context.  Nor did he bother to note that at least some of the structures in the illegal encampment were built via foreign funding—including from the EU and UK.

What actually happened? The Bedouin set up camp in an area the IDF has used as a firing range since 1972, and which according to international law is under Israeli control. Since the Bedouin don’t have permanent residency there, they have no legal rights to the land. After allowing them to make their case in court, the IDF removed all of seven tents and eight animal pens.

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Read more at CAMERA-UK

More about: Bedouin, Guardian, Ilhan Omar, West Bank

Why the Leader of Hamas Went to Russia

Sept. 30 2022

Earlier this month, the Hamas chairman Ismail Haniyeh and several of his colleagues visited Moscow, where they met with Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and other Russian officials. According to Arabic-language media, Haniyeh came seeking “new ideas” about how to wage war against the Jewish state. The terrorist group has had good relations with the Kremlin for several years, and even maintains an office in Moscow. John Hardie and Ivana Stradner comment on the timing of the visit:

For Moscow, the visit likely reflects a continuation of its efforts to leverage the Palestinians and other issues to pressure Israel over its stance on Russia’s war in Ukraine. Russia and Israel built friendly relations in the decades following the Soviet Union’s dissolution. After Russia invaded Ukraine in February, Jerusalem condemned the war, but made sure to tread carefully in order to preserve working ties with Moscow, lest Russian military forces in Syria disrupt Israel’s strategically important air operations there.

Nevertheless, bilateral tensions spiked in April after Yair Lapid, then serving as Israel’s foreign minister, joined the chorus of voices worldwide accusing Russia of committing war crimes in Ukraine. Jerusalem later provided Kyiv with some non-lethal military aid and a field hospital. In response, Moscow hardened its rhetoric about Israeli actions in the Palestinian territories.

The Palestinian issue isn’t the only way that Russia has sought to pressure Israel. Moscow is also threatening, on seemingly spurious grounds, to shutter the Russian branch of the Jewish Agency.

Moscow likely has little appetite for outright conflict with Israel, particularly when the bulk of Russia’s military is floundering in Ukraine. But there are plenty of other ways that Russia, which maintains an active intelligence presence in the Jewish state, could damage Israel’s interests. As Moscow cozies up with Hamas, Iran, and other enemies of Israel, Jerusalem—and its American allies—would do well to keep a watchful eye.

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Read more at Algemeiner

More about: Hamas, Israeli Security, Russia