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Israel Nabs Palestinian Terrorist Fisherman Plotting to Attack Navy

April 4, 2018 Peace and Conflict

Illustrative naval ship off the coast of Israel. By Joshua Spurlock

Palestinian terrorists once again were seeking to exploit their own civilians to attack Israel, which arrested ten of them who were part of a plot to launch a rocket attack and kidnapping against the Israeli Navy. The plan, according to an Israeli press release on the arrests, was to lure a Navy vessel with one Palestinian boat and then have a second boat fire a Cornet ship-to-ship rocket at the Israeli vessel, intending to kill and wound crew members. A third boat would then swoop in and kidnap Israeli sailors to use in prisoner exchanges.

The plotters were caught last month aboard a fishing boat that had gone outside the fishing zone and was suspected of gathering intelligence on the Navy, notes the press release, which was jointly published on Wednesday by the IDF and Israel Security Agency (ISA). One of the Palestinians is a fisherman and a member of the Islamic Jihad terrorist faction. He had been directed to plan an attack from superiors, turning his otherwise innocent-looking fishing expedition into information-gathering for terrorism and it wasn’t the first time he’d scoped out naval vessels.

The press release said the incident “once again proves that the terrorist organizations are trying to exploit the civilian easements that Israel has repeatedly tried to enact vis-à-vis fishing in order to advance terrorist attacks that also harm the civilian population in the Gaza Strip.” … Continue Reading

Israel Stifles Border Attack, Kills Terrorists in Massive Gaza Riots

April 1, 2018 Peace and Conflict

Illustrative Palestinian banner of gunmen and Dome of the Rock. By Joshua Spurlock

Tens of thousands of Gazans rioted on the Israeli border last Friday, wielding Molotov cocktails, burning tires and attempting terrorism against Israel’s Gaza border security system. During the rioting, the IDF killed at least 10 known terrorists with a history of involvement in attacks, the IDF Spokesperson tweeted, later following up with photos of all ten terrorists.

During the riots, which Hamas dubbed the “Great Return March” and claimed would be peaceful, a terror cell opened fire on Israeli forces, the IDF Spokesperson Twitter feed reported. A follow-up Tweet said that in response, the IDF—“according to the rules of engagement”—fired at the terrorists and then further struck three Hamas terror sites.

The IDF Spokesperson tweeted that “this severe shooting attack is further proof that the terrorist organizations in the Gaza Strip use these violent riots to camouflage terror.” A separate tweet highlighted that Israeli tanks prevented an infiltration attempt by terrorists trying to break across the border. Tweeted the IDF Spokesperson, “The Hamas terror organization is responsible for violent riots and everything taking place under its jurisdiction. The IDF will not allow the security fence to be turned into an area of terror.”

IDF Spokesperson Maj. Keren Hajioff detailed the Gaza riots in a summary video posted to the IDF Spokesperson’s Twitter feed. She noted that more than 30,000 Palestinians participated in the riots that included molotovs, burning tires and efforts to “harm or destroy Israel’s security infrastructure.” … Continue Reading

With Trump Deadline on Nuke Deal Approaching, Israel Talks Iran with Europe

March 26, 2018 Peace and Conflict

PM Netanyahu and German FM Maas. Photo courtesy of Kobi Gideon / GPO

Iran was a key topic as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hosted two of the most influential diplomats in Europe on Monday, with time running out to fix the Iran nuclear deal before United States President Donald Trump pulls his country out of the accord. Trump had set a four month deadline to upgrade the arrangement in January, leaving Europe roughly six weeks to make the required changes. It was certainly a top-of-mind talking point for Netanyahu.

“The foremost terrorist-sponsoring regime in the world, in our region and beyond is Iran. We have to roll back its aggression, and it is vast, and we must ensure that Iran does not acquire nuclear weapons,” Netanyahu told French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian in comments from his office. “I think this is the preeminent issue facing the international community in the coming months, in the coming years.”

Netanyahu also met with German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas—just weeks after he was named Berlin’s top diplomat—and the Iranian nuclear deal was on the agenda. And even if the two nations don’t always agree, Haas made it clear they remain friends. … Continue Reading

Netanyahu: Time to Realize Gaza Aid Money Being Buried Underground

March 18, 2018 Peace and Conflict

Terrorist construction can be dangerous too. Illustrative image of bulldozer. By Joshua Spurlock

The Israelis took out two more Gaza terror tunnels over the weekend, including one that Hamas was trying to rebuild. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu wants the world to know what their aid money to Gaza is really being used to develop: terrorism. “Our policy is to take determined action against any attempt to attack us and to systematically eliminate the infrastructure of terrorist tunnels and thus we will continue,” said Netanyahu on Sunday in comments released by his office. “The time has come for the international community to realize that the assistance funds to Gaza are being buried underground.”

The Prime Minister’s Office Arabic spokesman, Ofir Gendelman, expanded on what Hamas is doing with the millions of dollars received. “These funds are not spent by Hamas on welfare, housing or improving the lives of Palestinians. They are spent on terror tunnels, bunkers, rockets & weapons,” tweeted Gendelman. … Continue Reading

Netanyahu: Iran Nuke Deal Risks ‘Nuclearization’ of the Middle East

March 11, 2018 Peace and Conflict

Could Trump fix the Iran nuclear deal? Radiation Warning Symbol. Public Domain.

For all the concerns about a nuclear weapons-armed Iran and the faulty Iran nuclear deal, there just might be an even greater concern for the world over the consequences of Iran’s nuclear program: a Middle East filled with nuclear weapons-armed countries. “Many countries in the Middle East are saying that they are also allowed to enrich uranium if Iran is allowed to do so,” said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday. “Therefore, the way to prevent this danger, the nuclearization of the Middle East, is to either thoroughly correct the [Iran nuclear] agreement or abrogate it.”

Netanyahu, in comments to the Israeli cabinet published by his office, said that the diplomatic talks with a variety of United States officials last week during a visit to America “focused mainly on Iran.” Said the Israeli leader, “I said that the nuclear agreement with Iran contains within it many dangers for the world, including the special danger of the nuclearization of the Middle East.”

A February report from the Institute for Policy and Strategy at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya in Israel noted that multiple nations—including Egypt and Saudi Arabia—are working towards building nuclear power programs. Citing a variety of news articles on the nuclear plans, Shaul Shay wrote in the report that the United Arab Emirates is planning to officially open the first Arab nuclear power plant this year. … Continue Reading

Netanyahu: ‘Virtually All’ Arab States See Israel as ‘Vital Ally’

March 7, 2018 Peace and Conflict

PM Netanyahu and The Economic Club of Washington Pres. David M. Rubenstein. Photo courtesy of Haim Zach / GPO

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday said he is witnessing something he’s never seen in his entire life. It’s something that he sees as “a new hope on the horizon,” something offering the potential for real Middle East peace, and as he said, “it’s not related to the Palestinians.”

“Because of the growing danger of Iran, more and more, I would say virtually all the Arab countries, no longer see Israel as their enemy, but as their vital ally in countering the threat of militant Islam,” said Netanyahu in a visit to the Economic Club of Washington according to comments published by his office.

Netanyahu noted they have stopped ISIS terror attacks, including those targeting “big airlines” and that counterterrorism includes sharing intelligence with Arabs. And then there’s the threat of Iran, and the uniting of the Israeli and Arab efforts against them. “Out of this curse comes a blessing. The blessing is this extraordinary relationship between us, and I think that ultimately we might be able to shift the ground,” said Netanyahu. “I don’t think it’s really available right now but I don’t discount that it could happen.” … Continue Reading

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