Showing posts with label Israel and Gaza. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Israel and Gaza. Show all posts

21 February 2018

Economic Warfare a Poor Strategy for PLO’s Abbas

By David May

It was a speech that few Middle East observers will forget. During his January 14 tirade before the PLO Central Council, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas delivered a slew of conspiratorial and anti-Semitic comments. Abbas accused Israel of deliberately creating a drug problem among Palestinians and attempted to undermine the Jewish connection to the land of Israel. The Palestinian president also threatened to “publish a blacklist of 150 companies who work with the settlements.” After Abbas’ hours-long oratory, the PLO Central Council declaredthat it would “adopt the BDS movement and call on world countries to impose sanctions on Israel,” referring to Israel as an “apartheid regime.”

Looking back at Eisenkot’s three years as IDF chief

Ron Ben Yishai

Analysis: It is still too early to assess Eisenkot’s performance as IDF Chief of Staff; the real test is how well the army he leads performs on the battlefield; However, it can still be said that Eisenkot is an exceptional military leader owing to the impressive amount of objectives, which he set for himself at the start of his term, which were fulfilled.

In the shadow of the latest events in the north, Lieutenant General Gadi Eisenkot is completing his three year term as army Chief of Staff. However, as is often the case, Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman extended his term an additional year. Eisenkot announced though that he will complete his service at the close of 2018, and not wait until February, 2019. 

16 February 2018

Israel Lost a Jet, but Proved it would Win the War


It was no surprise when two strategic vectors clashed this weekend on Israel’s northern front: The Iranian determination to build an advanced military force in Syria collided with Israeli determination to prevent that from happening.

On a broader strategic level a conflict of this sort was expected, though the timing and tactics were set by the Iranians in the latest round. The context of this particular incident was the Iranian led-axis’ rising self-confidence in light of its success in the Syrian civil war, and this led Teheran to field test a new UAV (based on reverse engineering a U.S. model) as well as Israeli air defense by sending the drone into Israeli skies.

15 February 2018

Israel’s power show on northern border aimed at Hezbollah

Ben Caspit 

The visit by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to the northern border and the extensive paratrooper drill last week sends a clear message to Lebanon and Hezbollah: Israel is prepared for an attack.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visits a military outpost on Mount Hermon in the Golan Heights, Feb. 4, 2015. 

On Feb. 6, Israel’s Security Cabinet paid a visit to the country’s northern border. The ministers, led by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman, were photographed in fashionable windbreakers, baseball caps and binoculars looking out over the Syrian border from the Golan Heights. Photos from the tour that reached the press were shot in the Golan Heights, with the ministers looking northeast, or in other words, at the Syrian front.

Another Unnecessary War

by Idan Landau

The writing is already on the wall: Israel will soon launch a military operation in Lebanon. Not a targeted attack on a weapons convoy or factory, but a simultaneous attack on Hezbollah’s missile production and launch sites. The operation will take place at the same time as, or immediately after, a series of assassinations of known Hezbollah operatives. That organization will, of course, react by launching a massive missile barrage at population centers in Israel, and Hamas may contribute its share in the south. Last week we were informed that missile interceptor systems have already been deployed throughout the country as part of a joint “drill” between the IDF and the U.S. military. Washington has already given a green light, or so we learn from Thomas Friedman’s most recent column — a faithful mouthpiece of American foreign policy.

A Dangerous Course Israel Should Avoid


TEL AVIV — When Vice President Mike Pence spoke to the Knesset on Jan. 22, legislators who oppose a two-state solution sent a clear signal that they have taken President Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital as a green light to proceed with initiatives to annex portions of the West Bank.

The signal came in two parts: As Mr. Pence reiterated America’s commitment to Israeli-Palestinian peace, every member of the governing right-wing coalition stayed silent while opposition legislators rose to applaud. More stunningly, the Knesset’s speaker, Yuli Edelstein, declared that Israel will “develop the whole of the country, including Judea and Samaria,” referring to the biblical names for the entire West Bank.

3 February 2018

Geopolitical Futures logo Israel’s Russia Gambit

By George Friedman

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow on Jan. 29 and told Putin that Iran is trying to turn Lebanon into a vast missile manufacturing base. I have written on the rise of Iranian power following the defeat of Islamic State forces in Iraq and Syria, and have raised the question of how Israel and Turkey will respond to Iran’s emergence as a major power in the Arab world. We are now beginning to see the Israeli response.

2 February 2018

Top Ten: Major Threats In 2018

Islamic Terrorism

ISIL (Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant) may be greatly diminished but various al Qaeda franchises (in central Africa, Yemen, Syria and South Asia) are still very active and so are various Islamic terror groups that have been around a long time in places like Pakistan, Indonesia, the Philippines, northern Africa, the Persian Gulf and the Caucasus where they concentrate on non-Moslems or Moslems considered heretics. Some of these groups have been terrorizing their neighbors for centuries. What is different now is that most Moslem rulers recognize that this sort of thing does no one any good and is bad for Islam. Even the new ruler of Saudi Arabia accepts this and is seeking a broad solution. The problem is that there is no one recognized (by even a majority of Moslems) authority on what (if anything) defines acts that justify Islamic terrorism. So the Islamic terrorism will still be out there in

13 January 2018

Mossad Chief: Israel Has Eyes, Ears and ‘Even More’ in Iran

Mossad Chief: Israel Has Eyes, Ears and ‘Even More’ in Iran

Mossad chief Yossi Cohen said Tuesday in a rare public appearance that Israel “has eyes, ears and even more” in Iran. Speaking at a Finance Ministry conference, Cohen addressed the ongoing protests in Iran, saying that Iranian civilians are protesting the Islamic Republic’s current economic woes “because despite high expectations from the popular [President Hassan] Rohani, he has not managed in the eyes of a large part of the population to improve the economic situation.” Cohen added that “this reality is pushing people out into the streets, but one must temper expectations. I would like to see a revolution, but the protesters are faced with opposing forces. Meanwhile, we are seeing that Iran is spending more and more on security in order to push its aspirations of spreading influence throughout the Middle East.”

8 January 2018

Daniel Pipes: Achieving Peace Through Israeli Victory

The following is a lightly edited transcript of a talk delivered at the David Horowitz Freedom Center on Nov. 19, 2017. Click the graphic below right to watch the video. Daniel Pipes: I'd like to start by recalling Lt. Hiroo Onoda of the Imperial Japanese Army. Lieutenant Onoda was, in 1974, convinced to surrender. He was living on an island in the Philippines, and for 29 years, he had very seriously been engaging in war. He'd been killing people, maiming them, and stealing. Finally, he was convinced, when his commanding officer came to the island, that he should lay down arms, that the war was over and that Japan had lost.

7 January 2018


Anna Ahronheim
Jerusalem Post

Unit 3060 was formed in 2014 and has soldiers who specialize in technology.

The army is increasing the effectiveness of its troops on the battlefield with a unit in Military Intelligence that has revolutionized how soldiers receive and understand intelligence.

Formed in September 2014 as part of a reorganization of responsibilities by Military Intelligence, Unit 3060 has some 400 soldiers (half of them career intelligence officers) who specialize in technology-related fields.

23 December 2017



Palestinian militant group Hamas has arrested and tortured jihadis in the Gaza Strip, the blockaded territory it presides over, in a bid to prevent rocket fire into Israel and a new round of conflict.

President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel on December 6, setting off protests among Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza.

According to Israeli newspaper Haaretz, Hamas arrested jihadis who it believed were responsible for the rocket launches, and it is likely they had been tortured by Hamas security forces.

15 December 2017



There is an interesting link on the White House website. Click and you will find a blunt statement. “President Trump stands in solidarity with Israel to reaffirm the unbreakable bond between our two nations and to promote security and prosperity for all. Stand with President Trump and Prime Minister Netanyahu.” There, of course, is no alternative link that asks the reader to stand with President Donald Trump and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the same way.

Israel and Iran in Syria

Israel fired missiles at a base near Damascus, Syria, over the weekend. According to Syrian news agency SANA, two Israeli missiles were shot down. Arab media reported that the target was an Iranian military base. After the attack, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned that Israel would not tolerate Iranian forces in Syria. Israel previously had chosen not to conduct airstrikes on this reported Iranian base as it had done against other targets – mostly Hezbollah weapons convoys – in Syria. Israel obviously knew this site was well protected, proven by the fact that it had anti-missile capabilities.

13 December 2017

Jerusalem: A Decision of Regional Consequence

Washington's decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel will give jihadist groups a rallying cry to galvanize supporters and recruit new members. By dimming the prospects for a two-state solution, the move will push Israelis and Palestinians alike toward a one-state model, however reluctantly. Though the change in Jerusalem's status will present a challenge for most countries in the region, Iran and Turkey could turn it to their advantage. 

12 December 2017

Recognize Jerusalem as Capital of Israel and Palestine

Ghanem Nuseibeh

Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is a grave mistake. Whenever there is a conflict in the Middle East, the city features prominently, whether or not the dispute is between Israel and its neighbours. Jerusalem has been targeted many times by warring parties seeking to draw the country into a wider regional conflict. Saddam Hussein, former Iraqi president, tried to do so during the first Gulf war of the early 1990s.

The Strategic Impact of Making Jerusalem the Capital of Israel

By Anthony H. Cordesman 

President Trump's announcement on December 6th that, "It is time to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel," and that he is "directing the State Department to begin preparation to move the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem," will hurt both Israeli and U.S. strategic interests. Two critical problems: It damages Israel and U.S. interests by seriously irritating the Arab world, and it gives Iran, the Hezbollah, and Russia the opportunity to exploit this anger and the divisions. There was no earthly reason to provoke the Arab world. All President Trump had to do to help Israel was to ignore his campaign rhetoric and Israel's political hardliners, and do nothing. Every year since 1967, Israel has slowly created new facts on the ground in Jerusalem and on the West Bank. Jerusalem has become steadily more Jewish, and the Jewish areas in greater Jerusalem have expanded eastward to the point where they have virtually reached the edge of the slopes down to the Jordon River Valley. 

11 December 2017

The Problem With Building a U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem

The media is abuzz with speculation that one of U.S. President Donald Trump's first orders of business in office will be to relocate the U.S. Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Actually doing such a thing, however, is not as easy at it may appear. A relocation would not sit well with Palestinians, who also lay claim to the holy city, nor would it be welcomed by countries such as Jordan and Egypt that have struggled to juggle friendly ties with the Palestinian territories, Israel and the United States. And no matter how well-protected the embassy itself may be, stoking ethnic and religious tension by transferring the diplomatic site to Jerusalem could bring U.S. missions and citizens in the restive region directly into the line of fire.

10 December 2017

Before Deciding Who Rules Jerusalem, Decide What Jerusalem Is

Diana B. Greenwald

Recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel throws the fate of city's residents into uncertainty.

Even though I do not practice religion, upon stepping foot in Jerusalem for the first time, I knew it was an exceptional place. The weaving streets and alleys of the Old City lead one through colorful shops owned by Armenian, Jewish, and Palestinian Christian and Muslim residents. The walled city contains the magnificent and sparkling Dome of the Rock, the deeply moving Western Wall and Church of the Holy Sepulchre, and the elegant al-Aqsa mosque. Quite simply, there is no place like Jerusalem on earth.

The Weapon Wizards: How Israel Became a High-Tech Military Superpower

Spurred by the digital revolution and pressured by Western moral standards about protecting innocent life, advances in battlefield technology have fundamentally changed the way we fight wars. Armies can now use pinpointed weapons to minimize civilian casualties. They can fire missiles at a single apartment in a crowded building, can identify the car of a terror cell leader and monitor it until it passes into an isolated area and be destroyed with a drone, and can use cyber tools to remotely disable weapons systems without ever dropping a bomb.