Archive | March 2016

Israel: Human Rights And UN Wrongs

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Imagine: You’re on trial and you discover the judge appointed to hear the case has already decided you are guilty and has a long history of publicly saying so. That appears to be the UN Human Rights Council approach to justice when it comes to one particular country. They seem to do a variation of the old trick of saying ‘We will hold a free and open trial and at the end of it we will find you guilty’.

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The councils first choice to become the new Special Rapporteur on the Palestinian territories is criminologist Penny Green. She is a professor of law and globalization at Queen Mary University of London.
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Professor Green’s views on Israel are not unique. She is on record as saying that Israel has a “criminal government”, and she believes it is “time to stand up against Israeli state violence”. She supports the total boycott of Israel, wants Hamas de-listed as a terrorist organisation, and has wondered why the British and Americans have not begun “bombing Israel for its massacres”.
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So far, so routine in the extremist-mainstream. To her credit, Ms Green, unlike so many “human rights activists”, stands up against abuses around the world and not just in one small part of it. She does, however, display an unhealthy obsession with the same place that others obsess over Israel.
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She is entitled to her opinion. However, surely anyone, even if they supported these views, might understand that holding them disqualifies you from impartially judging the behavior of one of many parties involved in the situation.
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She supports the total boycott of Israel
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Example a Green tweet: “Israeli extra-judicial killing in Palestinian hospital”. It may or may not have been an extra-judicial killing, but the tweet, after the event, but before an investigation, is not that of a sober, fair-minded legal representative of the UN acting on our behalf. It is closer to a student activist unaware, and possibly uncaring, of the complexities of a conflict.
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The Rapporteurs job as mandated by a 1993 resolution is not to investigate all human rights abuses in Palestine, but only “Israels violations”. However, the UN told me that that subsequent procedural changes do not make this stipulation and therefore “it would be perfectly conceivable for a mandate holder to interpret the mandate in a proactive manner… In short, this does not restrict the mandate holder from investigating Palestinian violations as well”.
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In the past eight years of 36 statements and reports by the Rapporteur, all 36 have only criticized Israel. No other conflict is investigated by the UN in this twisted manner.

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Even if you left that ludicrous prejudice to one side, there would still be a problem. The UNHCR’s own rules state that when selecting a candidate, impartiality and objectivity is of “paramount
importance”.
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The councils first choice should not be a surprise. The incumbent in the job is from Indonesia, a country that does not accept the right of one side in the conflict to exist. His predecessor was a 9/11 conspiracy theorist.
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The councils chair normally accepts the candidate recommendation. This is planned to happen on March 24. If a fuss is made, perhaps the compromise could be the second choice, a Canadian lawyer called Michael Lynk, whose views on Israel are… embarrassingly similar to those of Prof Green.
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It is possible the council’s due diligence staff do not have access to the internet or a telephone and so are unaware of the candidates views and cannot see a problem. The only other explanation is that they do not care.
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Professor Green did not reply to a request for comment; for its part the UNHCR would only discuss the appointment process, not the individuals concerned.

 

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Scotland: Imam at Glasgow’s biggest mosque praises Muslim who murdered foe of Pakistan’s blasphemy laws

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Does Imam Maulana Habib Ur Rehman want Sharia blasphemy laws in Scotland? What do you think?

Note also that Imam Maulana Habib Ur Rehman has not been arrested for “inciting racial or religious hatred.” British police were doubtless too busy with the case of Matthew Doyle, who committed the unpardonable offense of asking a Muslim woman to “explain Brussels.”

In modern multicultural Britain, you must not dare ask Muslims to account for all the mass murder that is committed in the name of Islam, or to do anything to counter it. But you can praise a man who committed murder for saying that others should not be killed for offending Islam, thereby tacitly expressing approval of violence against those who are deemed to be “blaspheming” against Islam. In Cameron’s Britain, that’s just fine — but Matthew Doyle? Off with his head!

Tiny Minority of Extremists Update: “Glasgow mosque leader praises extremist killer,” by Calum McKay, BBC, March 24, 2016:

The religious leader at Scotland’s biggest mosque has praised an extremist who was executed for committing murder in Pakistan, the BBC can reveal.

Imam Maulana Habib Ur Rehman of Glasgow Central Mosque used the messaging platform WhatsApp to show his support for Mumtaz Qadri.

Qadri was hanged in February after murdering a local politician who opposed strict blasphemy laws.

In a statement the imam said the messages had been taken out of context….

Of course! Don’t Infidels always take Muslim spokesmen out of context when those Muslim spokesmen express support for violence against Infidels?

In messages seen by the BBC, Imam Maulana Habib Ur Rehman says that he is “disturbed” and “upset” at the news of Qadri’s execution, before writing “rahmatullahi alai”, a religious blessing usually given to devout Muslims and meaning may God’s mercy be upon him.

In another, he says: “I cannot hide my pain today. A true Muslim was punished for doing which [sic] the collective will of the nation failed to carry out.”
Religious guidance

Maulana Habib Ur Rehman is the most senior imam at Glasgow Central Mosque, a role which involves leading prayers and giving religious guidance and teachings….

Qadri was employed as a bodyguard for the governor of Punjab province in Pakistan, Salman Taseer, before turning on him in 2011 and shooting him nine times.

After the shooting Qadri reportedly told journalists that he was “proud” and that he had killed a “blasphemer”.

Bruxelles Massacre: A Time For All Muslims To Think.

Another massacre inspired by the Koran and the historical life of Muhammad, carried out by those who insist they are following the true path of Islam. And what do we get from the Western media? An immediate barrage of Imams telling us this isn’t Islam, Islam is a religion of peace.

Hezbollah Vs. Israel: Both Sides Say Next War Will Be Different

Most Middle East experts agree that it is not a matter of if, but when Israel and Hezbollah engage in their next conflict. However, the warnings coming from both sides is ramping up expectations that the next conflict may be the largest battle yet between the two foes.
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Currently Hezbollah is bogged down in the Syrian civil war as it assists Bashar al-Assad to stay in power while coordinating its efforts with Iran and Russia. Israeli experts estimate the terrorist group has lost between 1,300 to 1,500 soldiers while fighting against rebels and the Islamic State but in return they have gained valuable offensive fighting experience and are now battle hardened.
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It is estimated Hezbollah has around 5,000 personnel serving in Syria at any one time. Hezbollah’s total estimated fighting strength is around 35,000 fighters which leaves them stretched too thin to mount a significant ground challenge to Israel but this has not stopped it’s leader, Hassan Nasrallah, from boasting last week that the next conflict will be fought from inside Israel.
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Hezbollah could send dozens or perhaps even hundreds of terrorists into Israel’s Galilee region for the purpose of seizing territory to make a powerful political statement about it’s capabilities. Hamas has received most of the attention of late for it’s underground tunnel system due to some collapsing and killing several members.
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However, Hezbollah has capabilities to dig tunnels in the north as well and may employ this strategy rather than trying to cross over the border directly.
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It is presumed that any ground assault would be coordinated with the launching of thousands of missiles that is has been stockpiling, some estimates put these at over 100,000.  The massive missile barrage would be sent in large volumes to try to overwhelm Israel’s Iron Dome defence system.
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Hezbollah would likely attempt to sustain fire of around a thousand rockets and missiles per day, dwarfing the daily rate of 118 achieved in 2006. In the past these rockets and missiles were also based on old technology that allowed very little targeting capability.
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That has now changed and significant upgrades, mainly from Iran, mean Hezbollah can not only better target but reach much farther than ever before.
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An Iranian general has even boasted that Iran has supplied Hezbollah with missiles capable of reaching the nuclear reactor in Dimona.  Iran has long used Hezbollah as it’s proxy in the stealth conflict between the nations. Israel is believed to have sabotaged Iran’s nuclear program in the past with the Stuxnet virus as well as assassinated several scientists working on the nuclear program.
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Iran is suspected to have been behind Hezbollahs 1994 bombing of a Jewish community centre in the Argentine capital that killed 85 people and injured more than 300 others, and is also suspected in the 1992 bombing that destroyed Israels embassy in Argentina.
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Iran’s latest threat to Israel came last week when it test-launched two ballistic missiles emblazoned with the phrase “Israel must be wiped out”.
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The growing Hezbollah threat has prompted Israel to make “dramatic changes” to its border-defence plans, including moving tremendous amounts of dirt and constructing other barriers that would make a border attack more difficult.
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However, Israel’s greatest deterrent has been to use the threat of overwhelming force, not only on Hezbollah but Lebanon itself.  It is no secret that Hezbollah pulls most of the strings in the Lebanese government and that Hezbollah has total control of southern Lebanon (the area is dubbed “Hezbolland”), where nothing happens without the Shiite organizations approval.
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Many in the Israeli political and military leadership were criticized for the way they handled the previous war, which meant holding back Israel’s full force due to political considerations.  Many analysts say next time will be different and that is just what many Israeli officers have been threatening should Hezbollah attack.
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“The IDF could put Lebanon back 300 years and in parallel conquer the Gaza Strip and destroy all of its infrastructure” one IDF officer told Saudi journalist Majdi Halbi of the Elaph news site.
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Another officer commented on Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah’s threat to target the ammonia plant in Haifa, the officer said Israel was prepared for such an attack and was aware that its strategic infrastructure could be cut off during a confrontation with the militant Shi’ite organization.  “The organization and its leader know very well what Israel’s reaction will be, so it will not set out on such an adventure,” he said.
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It was also revealed Israel has sent messages to Hezbollah, via a third party country, warning it to think twice before attacking Israel and that it would regret the action.
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In the event that Hezbollah tries to surprise the IDF by occupying part of Israel near the border, the military will retake control of the area within a few hours, one officer commented.
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“Operationally, this is not a difficult story to deal with.” Within hours, the IDF can mobilize brigades to staging areas and begin sending them into Lebanon.
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“There is no problem with massing the forces and heading out on a speedy ground maneuver. We can do this very quickly,” he said. “The damage would be enormous in Lebanon. Wars cannot be waged in a ‘clean’ manner anymore. Hezbollah is operating from the midst of civilians. Wherever armored and infantry units pass through, there will be noncombatant deaths, as well”, he added.
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“There will be many dead. Hezbollah understands this,” the officer said.
“There is no challenge in Lebanon that the IDF cannot overcome. There is no village in Lebanon in which the IDF can’t overwhelm Hezbollah”. However, only a full-scale Israeli war effort would result in the defeat of Hezbollah, he added
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Such a conflict would have ramifications for the entire Middle East and could reshape the region.

 

Obama’s Poisoned Gift To Israel Before He Leaves Office

Like so many presidents who preceded him, the siren call of being the president who finally struck peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians has proven to be just too tempting for President Barack Obama to resist.
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I am afraid that like closing Guantanamo Bay, getting troops out of Iraq, imposing Obama care and concluding a risible nuclear deal with Iran, Israeli-Palestinian peace is just another item that Obama would like to mark off his checklist before he leaves office.
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On Monday, the Wall Street Journal reported that the White House was working on plans to revive long stalled peace talks between the Israelis and the Palestinians before Obama leaves office. The disturbing part of this is that Obama’s tactic, similar to the tactic he adopted in concluding the nuclear deal with Iran, is not to have the parties sit down and deal with each other, but rather to go directly to the United Nations Security Council and have his way enshrined in international law.
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As we all know, the United Nations is not a friendly forum for the state of Israel. It is dominated by the Organization of the Islamic Cooperation, formerly called the Organization for Islamic Conference, which is the largest group within the United Nations comprising 57 member states. Furthermore, this group frequently allies with the nonaligned members states, such as Cuba, Yugoslavia, Venezuela, and Iran. These nations often ally themselves with the former Soviet block states, as well, and make for an impressive, and usually insurmountable, bloc.
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Each fall, when the United Nation General Assembly begins, A slew of resolutions condemning the State of Israel is offered up, with very few resolutions condemning the rest of the world ever proposed. This past November, the General Assembly adopted six non-binding resolutions against Israel, and zero — that’s right, zero — against Syria, North Korea, Venezuela, Sudan, Cuba, Saudi Arabia, China, Russia, Iran or the Islamic State group. This came at a time when the Syrian regime was massacring its own people in the most horrific way imaginable, and the Islamic State group was busy conquering huge swaths of North Africa and the Middle East, as they raped, plundered and decapitated.
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One of last fall’s resolutions actually went so far as to say that Israel was to return the Golan Heights to Syria. Syria? What is left of that devastated nation? Which part of the Syrian chaos is Israel supposed to return the Golan Heights to? The corrupt and bloody regime of President Bashar Assad? The beleaguered rebels? The Islamic State?
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Israel is the only nation of the 193 United Nations member states that has a designated committee that targets it — the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian people.
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Now let us turn our attention to the UN Security Council. The body’s permanent members are the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom, France and China, and it also includes 10 rotating members from such lovely countries as Angola, whose president, Jose Eduardo dos Santos, has been in power for 35 years, and who is subject to increasing criticism for corruption, government repression and human rights abuses, including the arbitrary arrest and torture of journalists and anti-government activists, or Senegal, with a similar record of governmental repression and human rights abuses, or Venezuela, that beacon of morality and human rights.
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Most of these nations despise the United States and ironically, even under the Obama administration, feel that Israel is inextricably linked to the United States, and are therefore prone to singling out the Jewish state for abuse. Israel, as everyone knows, is not a part of any regional global grouping because the Middle East and North African bloc rejected them, and most nations vote as a bloc.
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Israel is like the neighborhood kid whom no one wants on their team.
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Even U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Samantha Power said in February that “as you all know, the U.N. Charter guarantees ‘the equal rights of nations large and small,’ and yet we have seen member states seek to use the U.N. Security Council, the General Assembly, and even the most arcane U.N. committees in ways that cross the line from legitimate criticisms of Israel’s policies to attempts to delegitimize the State of Israel itself. The only country in the world with a standing agenda item at the Human Rights Council is not North Korea, a totalitarian state that is currently holding an estimated 100,000 people in gulags; not Syria, which has gassed its people — lots of them. It is Israel.”
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We have seen, consistently throughout the term of the current American administration just how spitefully Obama has thrown Israel under the bus. One example was when a shipment of hellfire missiles, which Israel needed during the 2014 war in Gaza, was spitefully held up, or the Iran deal, which has already given Iran over $100 billion to send to Hezbollah, Hamas, Assad’s brutal forces and the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, among other nefarious regional players.
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Now, Obama seeks to bequeath one poisoned parting gift to Israel before he leaves office: An internationally enshrined Palestinian state.
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Whether this happens or not, we can only wait and see. But one thing is for certain, the mantle of peacemaker between the Fakestinian Arabs and Israel is being passed to the European Union.
That revived Roman Empire is stepping in as the USA steps back. Setting the stage for the prince of the people who destroyed the Temple to promote his preferred peace deal. 

 

New Technology, Same Old Eugenics

If there were an award for the most impactful technology that almost no one has heard of, the winner could be CRISPR.
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Now, CRISPR has nothing to do with refrigerator drawers that keep fruits and vegetables fresh. No, it’s the latest technology tempting us to try our hand at playing god.
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CRISPR stands for, get ready it’s a mouthful, “clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeat.” And all Gods people said, “Huh?” Well, originally, it referred to a series of repeats of the base sequences in the DNA of bacteria.
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To simplify this complicated story, geneticists are learning how to use the CRISPR in bacteria to edit the genome of other, far more complicated life-forms. As Nobel Laureate Craig Mello told National Public Radio, CRISPR “essentially allows you to change a genome at will to almost anything you want. The sky’s the limit.”
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Well, maybe not yet, but theres little doubt that CRISPR technology allows scientists to manipulate and edit genes much more quickly and at a much lower cost. With CRISPR they can potentially modify a gene and move it to another cell or even to another animal.
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No wonder Mello calls it “really exciting.”
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And another word for it would be “troubling.” Not because using technology to potentially prevent serious illness is a bad thing, but because of the historically proven reality that we most likely wont stop there.
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In a recent Washington Post article, writer Robert Gebelhoff was asked, “Whats the difference between genetic engineering and eugenics?” His answer: “not much, really.”
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After all, technology like CRISPR holds forth the promise of one day being able to “eliminate genetic disorders in humans.” While we can all get behind eradicating terrible genetic disorders like Tay-Sachs and Cystic Fibrosis, the fact remains that editing out inheritable traits from the human population is in fact what the eugenics movement was all about.
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As Gebelhoff points out, “The field of genetics has always had an uncomfortable link to eugenics,” which he defines as “the science of improving people through controlled breeding.” As Edwin Black chronicles in his definitive history of the eugenics movement, “War Against the Weak,” after the horrors of the Third Reich, eugenics was re-named “genetics” to rid itself of the taint of things like mass involuntary sterilization.
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But scientists have never given up the idea of using “genetic engineering as a means of perfecting the human species.” And the only restraint on what Black has dubbed “newgenics” seems to be “Well, just dont be a Nazi about it.”
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And thats not a joke. Scientists like the Nobel Laureate Joshua Lederberg and evolutionary biologist J.B.S. Haldane maintain that what Haldane called “positive eugenics” was different because “No living person would be eliminated from the gene pool.” Instead, “society could guide human development by eliminating negative traits and encouraging desirable ones through genetic engineering.”
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Phrases like “no living person,” “negative traits,” and desirable traits strongly suggest that the sanctity and dignity of all human life doesnt play much of a role in “newgenics.” “Positive eugenics” is at odds with the idea that theres “a moral, social and physical advantage in allowing diversity to flourish within the human gene pool.”
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Instead, whats “negative” and what’s “desirable” will be determined by a worldview that prizes physical perfection above all, only considers temporal criteria of value, and uses some image bearers as tools and eliminates others, much as we saw in the 1997 film, “Gattaca.” This war on the weak, like the original one, will be waged by people claiming to act in the name of the public good under the mantle of scientific objectivity.
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What could possibly go wrong?

PA Outraged That Iran Is Paying Families of Terrorists: Thats Our Job!

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Last week, Iran promised to pay $7,000 cash to families of every terrorist killed by Israel and $30,000 more if Israel demolishes their homes, effectively creating a life insurance policy for terrorists. (After all, Iran has lots of discretionary funds lately.)

The PLO is outraged!
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They don’t have a problem with the morality of paying to support terror, though. They are upset because Iran refuses to send them the money to distribute, and instead wants to pay the terror families directly:
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The Palestinian Authority criticized Iran on Saturday for comments made by its parliament international advisor, who said Iran would send funds to Palestinians families through its own channels rather than through the PA.
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Earlier on Saturday, Hussein Sheikh al-Islam was quoted by website al-Resalah as saying that “experience has proven that the [Palestinian] Authority is not reliable, so Tehran will send the money in its own way.”
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“Unfortunately, donations that were sent to the Authority did not reach the right people,” al-Islam said.
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 Palestinian Presidency Spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeineh said it would have been better for Iran to officially transfer the funds to the PA’s organizations, instead of sending them through “twisted ways and illegitimate means.”
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The criticism is mounting.
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As Iran has started setting up a mechanism to have families apply for funding via a website, more Fatah officials are expressing their anger at not getting a cut.
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The Secretary-General of the Palestinian Popular Struggle Front and member of the Executive Committee of the PLO, Ahmad Majdalani, said,”We welcome the support of Arab, Islamic and friendly foreign countries to help Palestinians in general, and the families of martyrs, prisoners and the wounded in particular, but it must pass through the formal means and legitimacy,” stressing that the PLO is the sole and legitimate representative of Palestinians and therefore all money should funnel through them.
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He called the Iranian plan an affront to the dignity of the Palestinian nation and our martyrs.”
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Secretary-General of the Palestine Liberation Front and a member of the Executive Committee of the PLO, Abu Yousef, said that the PLO would “refuse to subdue the blood of martyrs and the suffering of the prisoners and the wounded to the visions and goals of other political interests.”
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He said there are lots of existing committees, official bodies, and associations that specialize in distribution of cash to the families of the martyrs and that funds should be funnelled through these channels.
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Executive Committee of the PLO member Mahmoud Ismail said Irans quest to provide funds for the families of the “martyrs” and the prisoners through unofficial routes is proof that they do not want to support the Palestinian people.
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Secretary-General of the Palestinian Arab Front Jamil Shehadeh said “Iranian officials statements [about the lack of transparency under the PA] is an affront to the PA and the PLO.”
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Talal Abu Zarifa of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine said the proposal was an insult to the martyrs of Palestine, and the national struggle.
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This is a bigger story than just a dispute between Iran and the PLO.
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On the one hand, we have Iran, which wants to reward terrorists. And on the other hand, we have the “moderate” and internationally approved Palestinian Authority that also wants to reward terrorists and to skim some of the “martyr” funds for themselves.
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And both sides get billions of dollars from the moral Western world so they can fight over who can bankroll terror more.
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You know, the billions of dollars that are supposed to influence them away from supporting terror.
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Perhaps it is time to rethink the policy of sending lots of money to those who proudly fight over paying terrorists?