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Saturday, January 31, 2015

The authority to kill Mughniyah required a presidential finding by President George W. Bush. The attorney general, the director of national intelligence, the national security adviser and the Office of Legal Counsel at the Justice Department all signed off on the operation, one former intelligence official said

CIA and Mossad killed senior Hezbollah figure in car bombing

 January 30 at 10:14 PM   

On Feb. 12, 2008, Imad Mughniyah, Hezbollah’s international operations chief, walked on a quiet nighttime street in Damascus after dinner at a nearby restaurant. Not far away, a team of CIA spotters in the Syrian capital was tracking his movements. 
As Mughniyah approached a parked SUV, a bomb planted in a spare tire on the back of the vehicle exploded, sending a burst of shrapnel across a tight radius. He was killed instantly.
The device was triggered remotely from Tel Aviv by agents with Mossad, the Israeli foreign intelligence service, who were in communication with the operatives on the ground in Damascus. “The way it was set up, the U.S. could object and call it off, but it could not execute,” said a former U.S. intelligence official.
The United States helped build the bomb, the former official said, and tested it repeatedly at a CIA facility in North Carolina to ensure the potential blast area was contained and would not result in collateral damage.
“We probably blew up 25 bombs to make sure we got it right,” the former official said.
The extraordinarily close cooperation between the U.S. and Israeli intelligence services suggested the importance of the target — a man who over the years had been implicated in some of Hezbollah’s most spectacular terrorist attacks, including those against the U.S. Embassy in Beirut and the Israeli Embassy in Argentina.
The United States has never acknowledged participation in the killing of Mughniyah, which Hezbollah blamed on Israel. Until now, there has been little detail about the joint operation by the CIA and Mossad to kill him, how the car bombing was planned or the exact U.S. role. With the exception of the 2011 killing of Osama bin Laden, the mission marked one of the most high-risk covert actions by the United States in recent years.
U.S. involvement in the killing, which was confirmed by five former U.S. intelligence officials, also pushed American legal boundaries.
Mughniyah was targeted in a country where the United States was not at war. Moreover, he was killed in a car bombing, a technique that some legal scholars see as a violation of international laws that proscribe “killing by perfidy” — using treacherous means to kill or wound an enemy.
Former U.S. officials, all of whom spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the operation, asserted that Mughniyah, although based in Syria, was directly connected to the arming and training of Shiite militias in Iraq that were targeting U.S. forces. There was little debate inside the Bush administration over the use of a car bomb instead of other means.
“Remember, they were carrying out suicide bombings and IED attacks,” said one official, referring to Hezbollah operations in Iraq.
The authority to kill Mughniyah required a presidential finding by President George W. Bush. The attorney general, the director of national intelligence, the national security adviser and the Office of Legal Counsel at the Justice Department all signed off on the operation, one former intelligence official said.
The former official said getting the authority to kill Mughniyah was a “rigorous and tedious” process. “What we had to show was he was a continuing threat to Americans,” the official said, noting that Mughniyah had a long history of targeting Americans dating back to his role in planning the 1983 bombing of the U.S. Embassy in Beirut.
“The decision was we had to have absolute confirmation that it was self-defense,” the official said.
There has long been suspicion about U.S. involvement in the killing of Mughniyah. In “The Good Spy,” a book about longtime CIA officer Robert Ames, author Kai Bird cites one former intelligence official as saying the operation was “primarily controlled by Langley” and it was “a CIA ‘black-ops’ team that carried out the assassination.”
In a new book, “The Perfect Kill: 21 Laws for Assassins,” former CIA officer Robert B. Baer writes how he had considered assassinating Mughniyah but apparently never got the opportunity. He notes, however, that CIA “censors” — the agency’s Publications Review Board — screened his book and “I’ve unfortunately been unable to write about the true set-piece plot against” Mughniyah.
“We have nothing to add at this time,” said Mark Regev, chief spokesman for the prime minister of Israel.
Inside the killing of Imad Mughniyah(2:51)
Seven years after the death of Hezbollah's Imad Mughniyah, The Post's Adam Goldman and the Washington Institute's Matthew Levitt look at the international cooperation that brought down the former military commander. (Davin Coburn, Randolph Smith and Kyle Barss/The Washington Post)
A theory of self-defense
The operation in Damascus highlighted a philosophical evolution within the American intelligence services that followed the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. Before then, the U.S. government often took a dim view of Israeli assassination operations, highlighted by the American condemnation of Israel’s botched attempt in 1997 to poison the leader of Hamas, Khaled Meshal, in Amman, Jordan. The episode ended with Mossad agents captured and the Clinton administration forcing Israel to provide the antidote that saved Meshal’s life.
The Mughniyah killing, carried out more than a decade later, suggested such American hesi­ta­tion had faded as the CIA stretched its lethal reach well beyond defined war zones and the ungoverned spaces of Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia, where the agency or the military have deployed drones against al-Qaeda and its allies.
A former U.S. official said the Bush administration relied on a theory of national self-defense to kill Mughniyah, claiming he was a lawful target because he was actively plotting against the United States or its forces in Iraq, making him a continued and imminent threat who could not be captured. Such a legal rationale would have allowed the CIA to avoid violating the 1981 blanket ban on assassinations in Executive Order 12333. The order does not define assassination.
In sanctioning a 2011 operation to kill Anwar al-Awlaki, a U.S. citizen and an influential propaganda leader for al-Qaeda’s affiliate in Yemen, the Justice Department made a similar argument. Noting that al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula had targeted U.S. commercial aircraft and asserting that Awlaki had an operational role in the group, government lawyers said he was a continued and imminent threat and could not feasibly be captured.
“It’s fairly clear that the government has at least some authority to use lethal force in self-defense even outside the context of ongoing armed conflict,” said Stephen I. Vladeck, a professor of law at American University’s Washington College of Law. “The million-dollar question is whether the facts actually support a determination that such force was necessary and appropriate in each case.”
In the leadup to the operation, U.S. intelligence officials had assured lawmakers in a classified briefing that there would be no collateral damage, former officials said.
Implicated in multiple cases
At the time of his death, Mughniyah had been implicated in the killing of hundreds of Americans, stretching back to the embassy bombing in Beirut that killed 63 people, including eight CIA officers. Hezbollah, supported by Iran, was involved in a long-running shadow war with Israel and its principal backer, the United States.
The embassy bombing placed Hezbollah squarely in the sights of the CIA, a focus that, in some respects, foreshadowed the targeting of Mughniyah. In his 1987 book “Veil,” Washington Post journalist Bob Woodward reported that CIA Director William Casey encouraged the Saudis to sponsor an attempt to kill a Hezbollah leader. The 1985 attempt on the life of Mohammed Hussein Fadlallah with a car bomb failed, but killed 80 people, and he fled to Iran. Mughniyah’s brother was among those killed.
Former agency officials said Mughniyah was involved in the 1984 kidnapping and torture of the CIA’s station chief in Lebanon, William F. Buckley. The officials said Mughniyah arranged for videotapes of the brutal interrogation sessions of Buckley to be sent to the agency. Buckley was later killed.
Mughniyah was indicted in U.S. federal court in the 1985 hijacking of TWA Flight 847 shortly after it took off from Athens and the slaying of U.S. Navy diver Robert Stethem, a passenger on the plane. Mughniyah was placed on the FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorists list with a $5 million reward offered for information leading to his arrest and conviction.
He was also suspected of involvement by U.S. intelligence and law enforcement officials in the planning of the 1996 Khobar Towers bombing in Saudi Arabia that killed 19 U.S. servicemen.
“Mughniyah and his group were responsible for the deaths of many Americans,” said James Bernazzani, who was chief of the FBI’s Hezbollah unit in the late 1990s and later the deputy director for law enforcement at the CIA’s Counterterrorism Center.
The Bush administration regarded Hezbollah — Mughniyah, in particular — as a threat to the United States. In 2008, several months after he was killed, Michael Chertoff, then secretary of homeland security, said Hezbollah was a threat to national security. “To be honest, they make al-Qaeda look like a minor league team,” he said.
Beginning in 2003, Hezbollah, with the assistance of Iran, began to train and arm Shiite militant groups in Iraq, which later began attacking coalition forces, according to Matthew Levitt, who recently wrote a book about Hezbollah and is director of the Washington Institute’s Stein Program on Counterterrorism and Intelligence.
The Hezbollah-trained militias proved to be a deadly enemy, wounding or killing hundreds of American troops. As the situation in Iraq deteriorated and coalition casualties spiked in 2006, the United States decided it had to stanch the losses.
The Bush administration issued orders to kill or capture Iranian operatives targeting American troops and attempting to destabilize Iraq. It also approved a list of operations directed at Hezbollah, officials said. The mandate applied directly to the group’s notorious international operations chief.
“There was an open license to find, fix and finish Mughniyah and anybody affiliated with him,” said a former U.S. official who served in Baghdad.
In January 2007, Bush, in an address to the nation, singled out Iran and Syria, two countries with the closest ties to Hezbollah.
“These two regimes are allowing terrorists and insurgents to use their territory to move in and out of Iraq,” Bush said. “Iran is providing material support for attacks on American troops. We will disrupt the attacks on our forces. We will interrupt the flow of support from Iran and Syria. And we will seek out and destroy the networks providing advanced weaponry and training to our enemies in Iraq.”
While in U.S. custody, Daqduq confessed to playing a key role in the killing of the soldiers and provided the United States with a deeper understanding of Hezbollah’s networks, said Peter Mansoor, a retired Army colonel who served as executive officer to Gen. David H. Petraeus, the top American commander in Iraq.
“In interrogations with these folks, we finally discovered the full nature of Iranian and Hezbollah involvement in Iraq,” Mansoor said, noting that by then Iran had “outsourced the advisory effort to Hezbollah.” Mansoor said he had no knowledge of the operation that killed Mughniyah.
U.S. officials said Mughniyah played a pivotal role in linking Hezbollah to the Shiite militias that were working with Iran. It remains unclear if he ever entered Iraq. One former U.S. senior military official said there was information he traveled to Basra in southern Iraq in 2006, but it was not confirmed.
Ryan C. Crocker, the U.S. ambassador in Iraq when Mughniyah was killed, said: “All I can say is that as long as he drew breath, he was a threat, whether in Lebanon, Iraq or anywhere else. He was a very intelligent, dedicated, effective operator on the black side.”
Crocker said that he didn’t know anything about the operation to kill the Hezbollah operative and had doubts about Mughniyah traveling to Iraq. That said, he added: “When I heard about it, I was one damn happy man.”
Terrorism discussion widens
U.S. officials had explored ways to capture or kill Mughniyah for years. Those scenarios gained new urgency in the years after the Sept. 11 attacks when the Bush administration turned to the CIA and the U.S. military’s elite Joint Special Operations Command for stepped-up plans to stop major terrorist operatives — including those without ties to al-Qaeda or the 9/11 plot.
“When we said we would be willing to explore opportunities to target him, they practically fell out of their chairs,” the former U.S. official said. The former official said that JSOC had not developed any specific plan but was exploring scenarios against potential terrorism targets and wanted to gauge Israel’s willingness to serve as an evacuation point for U.S. commando teams.
The former official said that the JSOC approach envisioned a commando-style raid with U.S. Special Operations teams directly involved, not the sort of cloak-and-dagger operation that occurred years later.
“It never went anywhere,” said the former official, who was unaware of the CIA-Israeli operation to kill Mughniyah.
Still, the 2002 encounter suggests that Mughniyah continued to be a focus for U.S. counterterrorism officials even after their overwhelming attention had shifted to al-Qaeda.
“We never took our eye off Hezbollah, but our plate was full with al-Qaeda,” said Bernazzani, who retired from the FBI in 2008 and said he had no knowledge of the operation to kill Mughniyah.
A window of opportunity
It is not clear when the CIA first realized Mughniyah was living in Damascus, but his whereabouts were known for at least a year before he was killed. One of the former U.S. intelligence officials said that the Israelis were first to approach the CIA about a joint operation to kill him in Damascus.
The agency had a well-established clandestine infrastructure in Damascus that the Israelis could utilize.
Officials said the Israelis wanted to pull the trigger as payback. “It was revenge,” another former official said. The Americans didn’t care as long as Mughniyah was dead, the official said, and there was little fear of blowback because Hezbollah would most probably blame the Israelis.
“He was the commander and chief of all military and terror operations,” Yadlin said, who declined to discuss Mughniyah’s demise. “He was the agent of the Iranians.”
The operation to target Mughniyah came at a time when the CIA and Mossad were working closely to thwart the nuclear ambitions of Syria and Iran. The CIA had helped the Mossad verify that the Syrians were building a nuclear reactor, leading to an Israeli airstrike on the facility in 2007. Israel and the United States were actively trying to sabotage the Iranian nuclear program.
Once Mughniyah was located in Damascus, the intelligence agencies began building a “pattern of life” profile, looking at his routine for vulnerabilities.
Mossad officials suggested occasional walks in the evening — when Mughniyah was unescorted — presented an opportunity. CIA officers with extensive undercover experience secured a safe house in a building near his apartment.
Planning for the operation was exhaustive. An Israeli proposal to place a bomb in the saddlebags of a bicycle or motorcycle was rejected because of concerns that the explosive charge might not project outward properly. The bomb had to be repeatedly tested and reconfigured to minimize the blast area. The location where Mughniyah was killed was close to a girls’ school.
One official said the bomb was tested many times at Harvey Point, a facility in North Carolina where the CIA would later construct a replica of Osama bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan. Officials eventually concluded they had a bomb that could be used with no risk of others being killed or injured.
Mughniyah wasn’t alone in his confidence to operate freely in Damascus. During the operation, the CIA and Mossad had a chance to kill Qassem Soleimani, commander of Iran’s Quds Force, as he and Mughniyah walked together. Soleimani was an archenemy of Israel and had also orchestrated the training of Shiite militias in Iraq.
“At one point, the two men were standing there, same place, same street. All they had to do was push the button,” said one former official.
But the operatives didn’t have the legal authority to kill Soleimani, the officials said. There had been no presidential finding to do so.
When the bomb used to target Mughniyah was detonated, officials estimated the “kill zone” extended approximately 20 feet. The bomb was “very shaped and very charged,” an intelligence official recalled.
There was no collateral damage. “None. Not any,” the official said.
Facial recognition technology, another former official said, was used to confirm Mughniyah’s identity after he walked out of a restaurant in his neighborhood and moments before the bomb was detonated.
After the attack, Hezbollah leader Nasrallah blamed Israel for the killing and swore revenge: “Zionists, if you want an open war, let it be an open war anywhere.”
In fact, the damage to Hezbollah may have been compounded by the fact that the man charged with exacting revenge on Israel was a suspected Israeli asset. He was recently reported to be on trial in a Hezbollah court in Lebanon, but the group’s leader has downplayed the spy’s importance.
In a statement in 2008 after Mughniyah’s death, the office of then Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s office said: “Israel rejects the attempt by terror groups to attribute to it any involvement in this incident. We have nothing further to add.”
State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said at the time: “The world is a better place without this man in it. He was a coldblooded killer, a mass murderer and a terrorist responsible for countless innocent lives lost.”
Inside the intelligence community, a former official recalled, “It wasn’t jubilation.”
“We did what we had to,” the official said, “and let’s move on.”
William Booth in Jerusalem and Greg Miller, Karen DeYoung, Anne Gearan and Julie Tate in Washington contributed to this report.

Adam Goldman reports on terrorism and national security for The Washington Post.
Ellen Nakashima is a national security reporter for The Washington Post. She focuses on issues relating to intelligence, technology and civil liberties.


  1. Have a nice weekend, boys. The road beckons. :)


  2. "What your government did abroad yesterday, it does at home today."

  3. Nasrallah to Israel: Accept “the mix of Lebanese and Iranian blood on Syrian soil in Quneitra” or face war

    In is first speech since the cross-border military clash with Israel this week, Hizballah leader Hassan Nasrallah Friday, Jan. 30 tried dictating terms to Israel for border calm to continue. He said Israel must give up the right it reserves to strike out against the presence of his Lebanese Shiite organization and Iran on Syrian soil in Quneitra – or else, the war goes on.
    “The resistance no longer cares about rules of engagement,” he said in reference to Israeli leaders’ repeated warning that they would not tolerate an Iranian-backed Hizballah takeover of Syrian Golan for opening up a second front against the Jewish state.
    The Hizballah leader went on to say: “From now on, if any member of Hizballah is assassinated, we will blame it on Israel and reserve the right to respond to it whenever and however we choose.”
    The main point he made was this: “The mix of Lebanese and Iranian blood on Syrian soil in Quneitra represents the unity of our battle and fate.”
    During the day he conferred with a visitor from Tehran: Al Qods Brigades chief, Gen. Qassem Sioleimani.


  4. ISIS militants admit defeat in strategic town of Kobani

    Video released by pro-ISIS news agency shows two Islamic State fighters blaming airstrikes by U.S.-led coalition for forcing group's withdrawal from Syrian town.

    Members of the Islamic State group have acknowledged for the first time that they were defeated in the Syrian town of Kobani.

    In a video released by the pro-ISIS Aamaq News Agency late Friday, two fighters said airstrikes by the U.S.-led coalition were the main reason why they were forced to withdraw from Kobani.

    On Monday, activists and Kurdish officials said the town was cleared of ISIS fighters, who once held nearly half of the town. Jubilant Kurdish fighters raised their flag on a hill that once flew the Islamic State group's black banner. On Kobani's war-ravaged streets, gunmen fired in the air in celebration, male and female fighters embraced, and troops danced in their baggy uniforms.

    The failure to capture Kobani was a major blow to the extremists whose hopes for an easy victory dissolved into a costly siege under withering airstrikes by coalition forces and an assault by the Kurdish militia.



  5. Hezbollah's Attack on Israeli Defense Forces

    Press Statement
    Jen Psaki
    Department Spokesperson
    Washington, DC
    January 28, 2015

    The United States strongly condemns Hezbollah’s attack today from Lebanon on Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) in blatant violation of the cease fire between Lebanon and Israel and UN Security Council Resolution 1701, which called for the immediate cessation by Hezbollah of all attacks. We support Israel’s legitimate right to self-defense and continue to urge all parties to respect the Blue Line between Israel and Lebanon. We urge all parties to refrain from any action that could escalate the situation.

    We are deeply concerned by reports of injuries and casualties on both sides of the Blue Line, including the reported deaths of IDF soldiers and the death of a Spanish UN peacekeeper from the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL). We extend our sincere condolences to the victims’ families. We also stand with UNIFIL as it fulfills its important mandate to maintain peace and security along the Blue Line.

    Hezbollah continues to incite violence and instability inside Lebanon by attacking Israel and by its presence and fighting inside Syria, which violates Lebanese leaders’ agreed policy of dissociating Lebanon from foreign conflicts.


    As terms of UNSC 1701 Hezbollah has just attacked Israel and it is an Act of War.

    No tit for tat.

  6. UN Security Council Resolution 1701


    Expressing its utmost concern at the continuing escalation of hostilities in Lebanon and in Israel since Hizbollah’s attack on Israel on 12 July 2006, which has already caused hundreds of deaths and injuries on both sides, extensive damage to civilian infrastructure and hundreds of thousands of internally displaced persons,
    Emphasizing the need for an end of violence, but at the same time emphasizing the need to address urgently the causes that have given rise to the current crisis, including by the unconditional release of the abducted Israeli soldiers,

    Calls for a full cessation of hostilities based upon, in particular, the immediate cessation by Hizbollah of all attacks

    Calls upon the Government of Lebanon and UNIFIL as authorized by paragraph 11 to deploy their forces together throughout the South

    Emphasizes the importance of the extension of the control of the Government of Lebanon over all Lebanese territory

    Including the establishment between the Blue Line and the Litani river of an area free of any armed (Hezbollah) personnel, assets and weapons other than those of the Government of Lebanon and of UNIFIL

    No sales or supply of arms and related materiel to Lebanon (Iranian Rockets and missiles) except as authorized by its Government

    Hezbollah and iran are about to start another war.

    1. You've told us that Hezbollah and Iran already are at war, so how can they start one?
      You have told us that the government of israel is at war with Hezbollah and Iran.

      Your statement concerning their intent is at odds with your previous positions.

    2. Israel is already bombing Syria, in support of ISIS, and even providing helicopter gunships to attack vehicles on the ground.
      Killing the field commanders and foreign advisers of the troops aligned with the Syrian government against ISIS in Syria.

      To lay blame for Israel's involvement in the ever expanding Syrian conflict, upon Hezbollah and Iran, pure lunacy.

      The Israeli involvement in this regional fictionalization, found in the Yinon Plan, first published in 1982.

    3. Israel has taken out weapons destined for Hezbollah in Lebanon, in support of UNSC 1701.

      You can try to twist it anyway you care to, the important point?

      Syria and Iran have already murdered 300,000 syrians, ISIS has murdered 10k

      Both sides suck, and you stand with terrorists.

    4. Israel prefers Daesh (al-Qeada) in Syria, over the Alawites, Christians and their Kurdish allies

      Israel’s Ambassador to the United States Michael Oren told the Jerusalem Post that Israel so wanted Assad out and his Iranian backers weakened, that Israel would accept al-Qaeda operatives taking power in Syria.

      “We always wanted Bashar Assad to go, we always preferred the bad guys who weren’t backed by Iran to the bad guys who were backed by Iran.”

      Even if the other “bad guys” were affiliated with al-Qaeda.
      “We understand that they are pretty bad guys,” Oren said in the interview.


      Israel - Founded by Terrorists and Sustained by Terrorism and now ... Allied with Islamic Terrorists

      In broad daylight, a Saudi-Israeli alliance

      ... , we always preferred the bad guys who weren’t backed by Iran to the bad guys who were backed by Iran.”
      Even if the other “bad guys” were affiliated with al-Qaeda.
      “We understand that they are pretty bad guys,”

      - Israel’s Ambassador to the United States Michael Oren

    5. out of context and out of place, discredited as pure nonsense,.

      you are simplistic moron Jack

  7. This is right out of Netanyahu’s playbook. Israel wants continuous war so that it screens the continuous Anschluss of Palestine.

    1. Yeah bibi spent billions and billions to help build a hundred thousand iranain and syrian missiles and bunkers in both gaza and southern lebanon.

      maybe you should look at the islamic protagonists more.

  8. Replies
    1. Zionist's dream is to LIVE.

      It's the Jew hating arabs and moslems (along with the euro-trash) that do everything they can to cause Jews to die.

      So sorry if Jews fighting to LIVE upsets you.

      How many homes and schools and hospitals could the moslem world build with the trillion it has spent to genocide the Jews?

  9. Jack HawkinsSat Jan 31, 11:49:00 AM EST
    You've told us that Hezbollah and Iran already are at war, so how can they start one?
    You have told us that the government of israel is at war with Hezbollah and Iran.

    Your statement concerning their intent is at odds with your previous positions.

    Your comment is correct technically but wrong as a concept.

    They name the "battles" as wars. If you have an issue on how the world names these "battles"? Take it up with them.

    1. Maybe it's your unfamiliarity with English as your 1st language that makes you not understand Americans?

    2. Americans?
      Iran is not at war with Americans.

      The US Navy has shot down one of their commercial jet liners, filled with passengers ...
      The US and its allies are imposing economic sanctions upon Iran, which could be considered a blockade of sorts.
      An Act of War, economic blockades.

      So, as to the current state of affairs, and who is to blame for the state of the "State of Affairs", there is plenty of responsibility to be share.

    3. The US did assist in the removal of the legitimately elected Premier of Iran, back in 1952/53, installing an authoritative despot in place of the duly elected representative of the people.

      But ... that was then and the people of the US, they do not remember that piece of history.
      While it is paramount in the minds of Iranians.

    4. Sorry Jack, you are just full of it. You remind me of a lebanese arab, who would argue the world is flat. the sky is green and the bears dent shit in the woods.

      you are incapable of ratjonal discussion on any topic.

      You are a jackass

    5. A hundred years before the advent of Hitler, the German-Jewish poet, Heinrich Heine, had declared:
      "Wherever books are burned, human beings are destined to be burned too."

      On the night of May 10, 1933, an event unseen in Europe since the Middle Ages occurred as German students from universities once regarded as among the finest in the world, gathered in Berlin to burn books with "unGerman" ideas.
      …. http://www.historyplace.com/worldwar2/triumph/tr-bookburn.htm

      May 20, 2008 - Orthodox Jews burn hundreds of New Testaments in latest act of violence against Christian missionaries in Israel. ... The Maariv newspaper reported Tuesday that hundreds of students took part in the book-burning. . . .
      "Wherever books are burned, human beings are destined to be burned too."

    6. once again an out of context, meaningless post of drivel.

    Whose water is it anyways? Resentment pools on Israel-Lebanon border
    csmonitor icon

    A Lebanese village well, newly crucial amid water shortages, is on the wrong side of the boundary between Israel and Lebanon, as is an add-on to a riverfront resort.
    By Nicholas Blanford, Correspondent MAY 6, 2014
    Nicholas Blanford

    BLIDA, LEBANON — The Israeli-Lebanese border has enjoyed a rare, eight-year spell of calm, but worsening water shortages threaten to spark tensions once again.

    A sealed well used for more than a century by residents of Blida, a small village in southern Lebanon, has found itself on the wrong side of the border as water shortages entice local farmers to tap it. A few miles east along the border, another territorial dispute looms at a Lebanese tourist site beside the Hasbani river, which flows into Israel.

    The 24-foot deep well, known as Nabi Sheaib, skirts the course of the Blue Line, the United Nations term for a boundary created in 2000 which corresponds to Lebanon's southern border. Israeli troops were required by the UN to pull out of south Lebanon, to behind the blue line, to end its 1978-2000 occupation of south Lebanon.

    Cartographers often struggle with such boundaries because Global Positioning Systems are not precise enough. In 2000, when the blue line was first delineated, the disputed tomb of a Jewish rabbi or an Arab sheikh (depending on the Israeli and Lebanese points of view) was found to lie within the GPS margin of error. Both Lebanon and Israel insisted the tomb remain on their respective sides. UNIFIL instead offered a compromise worthy of Solomon, drawing the line down the length of the tomb.

    But such compromises depend on goodwill between neighbors, and that commodity seems to be in short supply between Israel and Lebanon.

    The blue line is only a stopgap until there is a formal frontier agreement between the neighbors. In 2009, the UNIFIL peacekeeping force in south Lebanon began physically marking the blue line on the ground in coordination with the Lebanese and Israeli armies. Blida's problem began when UNFIL realized that the Nabi Sheaib well actually lay about three feet on the Israeli side, and therefore was technically out of bounds to Lebanese citizens.

    "That well is part of our history and we will never let it go," says Hussein Daher, the mayor of Blida.

    The well is covered by a concrete roof and has four metal hatches providing access to the water below. Showing the well to the Monitor, Mr. Daher lifted one of the hatches open, breaching the blue line by a few feet. For now, it is useless – the bottom of the well is full of sand and rock, which need to be cleaned out to access the water below.

    1. {...}
      Riverside resort

      A few miles to the northeast, near Wazzani village, the line follows the middle of the Hasbani river, which separates Lebanon from Israeli-occupied Syria. Little more than a shallow creek, the Hasbani is flanked by dense thickets of oleander and rhododendron bushes and winds through a narrow gorge. In 2010, Khalil Abdullah, a local businessman, and his sister, Zahra, began constructing a tourist complex of swimming pools, chalets, and restaurants on the river bank.

      The Qaryat Hosn el Wazzani facility has steadily grown and is a popular spot for relaxing, eating, and swimming in the cool river [waters] during the blazing heat of summer. The Israelis have eyed the expanding tourist site with unease, and soldiers often stand on the river's edge, ending up just a few feet from Lebanese diners and swimmers.

      "They try to intimidate us. They curse us and are just looking for trouble," says Zahra Khalil.

      She says that the resort wants to clear rocks washed down river by the winter rains that are blocking part of the channel, but that doing so would require using heavy machinery and access to both sides of the river. So far, the Israelis have refused to allow the operation to proceed.

      A bigger problem, perhaps, is that a newly built restaurant extending into the river may have actually crossed the blue line. UNIFIL cartographers are trying to assess the exact path, which may have changed because of construction work on the tourist site.

      Given that the Israelis cannot use the Nabi Sheaib well because the only access from their side is a steep slope laced with landmines, and the Qaryat Hosn el Wazzani tourist site does not represent a security threat to Israel, it seems like it would be easy to strike a deal.

      But a history of distrust hangs over this minor dispute. In 2002, Israel threatened to go to war against Lebanon when a small pumping station was constructed on the bank of the Hasbani to provide drinking water to nearby villages. Israel is sensitive about the Hasbani because it flows into Israel a mile south of the tourist site and eventually feeds into the Sea of Galilee, Israel's largest source of fresh water.

      UNIFIL was hoping to quietly resolve the problems at Blida and Wazzani but that hope was dashed when the disputes were picked up by the Lebanese media.

      "The Israeli enemy conveyed its decision to prevent the usage of the well via the UNIFIL troops who implemented it, leaving the residents in great agony due to the drought which overburdens them," reported Al Manar television, owned by the militant Shiite Hezbollah, on Tuesday. Mr Daher, Blida's mukhtar, says the village will take its case to UNIFIL. But if the well is not restored to the villagers, they will take action.

      "We have made a decision to go and clean the well and get the water," he says. "A large crowd will go there and let the Israelis shoot us if they want."

    2. This goes on all the time. The people have to live with it but the resentment grows and the provocations leads to one explosion after another.

    3. It's not uncommon for the Arabs to steal the water to cause Jews to die.

      After all in 1966, before Israel liberated their lands called the "west bank", Arafat tried to blow up the Israel National Water Carrier in an effort to cause mass death by thirst.

    4. Deuce ☂Sat Jan 31, 12:07:00 PM EST
      This goes on all the time. The people have to live with it but the resentment grows and the provocations leads to one explosion after another.

      Yes the Israelis don't like it that the Lebanese cut off their water. But Israel has built desalination plants to provide water to it's citizens, maybe Lebanon, instead of allowing 100,000 rockets and missiles provided by Iran and the infrastructure therein, should be building things for it's citizens instead of getting ready to destroy Israel.

    5. .

      Desalination plants?


      Water is definitely a matter of concern.

      Attili: Israeli settlers draining Palestinian water supply
      Published Sunday 29/07/2012 (updated) 31/07/2012 13:37
      RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Israel allocates 70 times more water to each settler than to the average Palestinian in the West Bank, the head of the Palestinian Water Authority said Sunday.

      At a press conference in Ramallah, Shaddad Attili said Palestinians received 105 million cubic meters of water, less than the amount allocated in the 1995 Oslo Accords and around a quarter of the 400 million cubic meters needed according to international standards.

      Israel controls most of the water resources in the West Bank and refuses to increase the amount of water it allocates to Palestinians, Attili said, forcing Palestinians to buy water from Israel.

      Water is a final status issue in negotiations with Israel and postponing the issue to final talks has created a water crisis in Gaza and the West Bank, the official said.

      The Palestinian Water Authority has had to buy water and is billions of shekels in debt, Attili said. The Palestinian Authority, in the midst of its own fiscal crisis, has not helped with the debt, he added.

      Meanwhile in Gaza, 95 percent of the water is not fit for human consumption, and sea water -- contaminated with sewage -- is leaking into the over-extracted coastal basin, threatening long-term problems of kidney disease. Within two years there may be no drinking water left in Gaza, Attili said.



  11. US, EU warn Israel of 'detrimental impacts' of building 450 new settler homes
    RT - ‎

    The US and EU have advised Israel to drop its plans to construct an additional 450 settlement homes in the West Bank, warning that failure to do so would further destabilize the situation in the region and diminish prospects for peace.

    1. These so called new homes have been planned for over 15 years are INSIDE the boundaries on neighborhoods that always have been understood to remain in Israel's possession after a two state solution.

      The US and EU have failed to warn the PA that joining with Hamas, a recognized terror group has 'detrimental impacts' on peace. The celebrating of suicide bombers and mass murders as national heroes is also detrimental to the peace process. Building HOMES doesn't effect peace, mass murder and terror does.

    2. The Rome Statute states that war crimes include
      “the transfer, directly or indirectly, by the occupying power of parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies, or the deportation or transfer of all or parts of the population of the occupied territory within or outside this territory.”

    3. The Rome Statute covers States.

      The disputed lands of the west bank are not part of any nation at this time.

      More mental masturbation by JackRat.

    4. .

      The disputed lands of the west bank are not part of any nation at this time.

      Questionable legalisms.

      The UN plus 135 other states recognize Palestine as a state.

      I quess it depends on what the meaning of 'is' is. Kind of like Josh Earnest arguing that even though the Taliban uses 'terrorism as a tactic', they cannot be classified as a terrorist. But of course they can be classified that way. It just depends on who is doing the classifying.


  12. African Union agrees to send 7,500 troops to fight Boko Haram

    ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia

    African leaders have agreed to send 7,500 troops to fight the Boko Haram insurgency in northeast Nigeria, an African Union official said Saturday.

    The move came after the council urged heads of state to endorse the deployment of troops from five West African countries to fight the terror group, said the head of the African Union’s Peace and Security Council, Samil Chergui.

    African leaders who are members of the 54-nation African Union are meeting in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa for a two-day summit that ends Saturday.

    African nations have opened up a new international front in the war on terror. On Thursday, neighboring Chad sent a warplane and troops that drove the extremists out of a northeastern Nigeria border town in the first such act by foreign troops on Nigerian soil.

    Chad’s victory, and the need for foreign troops, is an embarrassment to Nigeria’s once-mighty military, brought low by corruption and politics. The foreign intervention comes just two weeks before hotly contested national elections in which President Goodluck Jonathan is seeking another term.

    Chergui said Chad’s operation against Boko Haram was a result of a bilateral arrangement between the Chad and Cameroon.

    “It is conducted as part of a bilateral agreement and arrangement between the two countries. The AU, however, will launch the force in the future,” he said.


    1. The USA in aiding Boko Haram by preventing much needed Military Helios from being delivered.


      U.S. prevented sale of Israeli helicopters to Nigeria
      Nigerians wanted to buy retired Cobra attack helicopters last summer to fight Boko Haram.

      So by Jack's standards, the USA is on the Boko's side.

    2. Always has been, "O"rdure.
      Trace Boko Haram's funding, it leads back to the Saudi.
      Allies of both the US and Israel.

      That the US supports both sides of many conflicts, old news.

    3. But, "O"rdure, you cannot cite one case where US aircraft have attacked Nigerian forces.
      Nope, the Israeli are actively supporting ISIS is Syria.

      The US is indirectly assisting Boko, but only by omission, not commission.
      An entirely different "Stat of Affairs".

    4. An entirely different "State of Affairs".

    5. "O"rdure always wanting to conflate what he and Israel have done, to what others have not done.

    6. you set up "hoops" to jump thru that support your fiction...

      you are a master baiter.

  13. In reference to the preliminary investigation into the Gaza war, Hassan al-Aouri, a legal adviser to President Mahmoud Abbas, told Al-Monitor, “We will support this." He also said: “We will submit another file regarding settlements. The latter affect the core of the conflict and are considered a war crime.”

    Aouri said work is already underway on the settlements file. The Rome Statute states that war crimes include “the transfer, directly or indirectly, by the occupying power of parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies, or the deportation or transfer of all or parts of the population of the occupied territory within or outside this territory.”

    Shawan Jabarin, director of the Al-Haq Foundation, told Al-Monitor: “The prosecutor will obtain information and inquiries about the situation in Palestine from individuals, institutions and official, civil and legal organizations. Based on the results of the analysis, the criminal prosecutor will decide whether to ask the judges to open a [formal] investigation, continue to collect information or refuse to initiate an investigation.”​

    Nasser al-Rayes, legal adviser to Al-Haq, spoke to Al-Monitor about the documentation prepared by official and civil entities on the settlements, stating, “It includes information on the territories confiscated by the occupation and the number of settlers in the West Bank, as well as military orders to confiscate land and the theft of water and natural resources.”

    Read more: http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2015/01/palestinian-icc-gaza-war-crimes-west-bank-settlements.html#ixzz3QQFXfAJO

    "... as well as military orders to confiscate land and the theft of water and natural resources.”

    1. But, "O"rdure, none of it is 'rightfully' yours.

    2. The Court will decide, and then it will be decided.

      Once and for all.

    3. The Court?

      But you have to have a STATE and be a member of that state to be a member of the ICJ.

      there is no "palestine" as a nation state of the palestinian people

      the point is moot...

      the Court will decide?

      More like the Kangaroo Court...


    4. As we speak the self named "palestinian" people are fighting between the hamas and the fatah branches..

      and the notion of a Palestinian State? Further than ever.

      IN 50 years? There will be no arab left who calls themselves "palestinian" or Jordain either... There will still be arabs of course, they will be citizens of Egypt, of Israel, of lebanon and even syria.

      But there will be no palestine or palestinian

    5. "If you have the facts on your side, pound the facts.
      If you have the law on your side, pound the law.
      If you have neither on your side, pound the table."

    6. .

      IN 50 years? There will be no arab left who calls themselves "palestinian" or Jordain either...

      That's the plan. Has been since the beginning.


  14. Seems like an excellent job was done using the spare tire bomb to grease the Hez'bo bum, to me.

    1. What Obama has done for israel is priceless.

      Israel will have to stand on it's own and do what it has to do, regardless of what Obama says or will do.

      America has to stand strong, on it's own, and get off middle east oil. Propping up the autocratic Jihadists of the world is not good for America either.

  15. http://in.reuters.com/article/2015/01/31/mideast-crisis-iraq-oil-idINKBN0L40A520150131

    (Reuters) - Kurdish peshmerga forces retook a small crude oil station near the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk which Islamic State insurgents seized earlier on Saturday, but the fate of 15 employees remained unclear.

    Two officials from the state-run North Oil Co told Reuters the militants had seized a crude oil separation unit in Khabbaz on Saturday morning and said 15 oil workers were missing after the company lost contact with them.

    One of the officials and a Kurdish military source said the peshmerga forces had regained control of the facility on Saturday evening and were combing it for explosives.

    1. .

      Kurdish peshmerga forces retook a small crude oil station near the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk...

      Gasoline: $2.08

      E85: $1.29


  16. Two Palestinian men fulfilled their families dream today and tried to burn Jews today. Sadly one was killed and the other wounded..

    When interviewed? The surviving mentally defective subhuman said: "Fuck the Jews, I will use high test next time"

    An IDF unit opened fire on two Palestinians who hurled firebombs at Israeli traffic south of Nablus on Saturday night, killing one suspect and injuring a second.

    An army spokeswoman said soldiers spotted the Palestinians firebombing Israeli cars, adding that the Palestinian who was injured in the incident sustained a gunshot wound to the leg.

  17. There ya go. Israel ought to put the whole area to using ethanol.

    Super Bowl tomorrow, folks !!


    1. NYT: Grad student’s experiments show that weather may be culprit in Patriots’ Deflategate
      posted at 2:01 pm on January 30, 2015 by Allahpundit

      Reading this, all I can think of is Frank Drebin: “Hey, the missing evidence in the Kelner case! My God, he really was innocent.” “He went to the chair two years ago, Frank.”

      Brady’s not going to the chair, though. And this still leaves one obvious question unanswered.

      In a usually obscure profession that has received extraordinary attention during the controversy, some academic and research physicists now concede that they made a crucial error in their initial calculations, using an equation called the ideal gas law.............



      Anybody but me been following "Deflategate"?

      Big issue in pro football circles right now.

  18. What is "Occupation"Sat Jan 31, 12:41:00 PM EST

    "These so called new homes have been planned for over 15 years are INSIDE the boundaries on neighborhoods that always have been understood to remain in Israel's possession after a two state solution."

    it is bulkshit weasel justifications like this that turn the average Joe against Israel.

    1. Nonsense, Noble Ash.

      The average Joe is concentrating on the Super Bowl as should be done, couldn't give a damn about the Israelis building some homes for themselves, and would continue to support Israel in any case.

      You got a favorite in the big game. Ash?

    2. ash,

      planned growth INSIDE of housing areas are well settled. Do you refute this?

      Do you support the ethnic cleansing of all Jews from the West Bank?

      It is weasel racist attitudes like yours that call for a JEW free area that stinks.

      Why should Arabs and jews not where they choose to live?

      Ash you are a racist.

    3. .


      planned growth INSIDE of housing areas are well settled. Do you refute this?

      Of course. Nothing is settled.

      Do you support the ethnic cleansing of all Jews from the West Bank?

      A little hypocritical given Jewish actions at the time of Israel's birth. Do you support the ongoing discrimination against Israeli Arabs?

      Why should Arabs and jews not where they choose to live?

      They should. Shall we discuss the ability of Arabs, Israeli Arabs, to purchase property wherever they want in Israel?

      Ash you are a racist.

      If Ash is a racist, WiO is a racist.


    4. A little hypocritical given Jewish actions at the time of Israel's birth. Do you support the ongoing discrimination against Israeli Arabs?

      Hell no.

      But ARABS inside of Israel are FULL citizens.

      maybe you should check your facts.

      Now ASH promotes the Juden Free concept of civil right..


      You cannot compare Israel, an imperfect society, with the PA & HAMAS and wholly racist society

  19. Why aren't the usual suspects OUTRAGED by this blatant attempt to undermine another country's democracy? -

    January 31, 2015
    Netanyahu's Likud moves ahead in Israeli election polling as party seeks ban on Obama-affiliated organizations campaigning in Israel
    By Thomas Lifson

    Despite claims by Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson that Speaker Boehner’s invitation to PM Netanyahu has “backfire[d] on them both,” in the real world Netanyahu’s Likud Party has just moved ahead in the latest poll of the Israeliu electorate. The Jerusalem Post:

    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud Party reached the top spot in a Panels Research poll taken for The Jerusalem Post and its Hebrew sister newspaper, Ma’ariv Sof Hashavua, on Thursday for the first time since Labor and Hatnua joined forces on December 10 to create the Zionist Union.

    The Likud Party is firing back against the efforts of Obama-affiliated and State Department-funded US groups to intervene in the Israeli election. Haaretz reports (via Scoopnest):

    Likud petitioned the Central Elections Committee on Wednesday for an order barring campaigning by the V15 organization, after Haaretz earlier this week reported on the organization’s efforts to replace the Likud-led government.

    V15, which stands for Victory 2015, is partnering with the pro-peace organization OneVoice. Its goal is to recruit thousands of volunteers who will go door to door before the election to persuade as many as one million people to vote to change the government.

    To this end, it hired Jeremy Bird, the national field director of U.S. President Barack Obama’s 2012 campaign, to organize its efforts.

    The Likud petition argued that V15 - which it termed an “extreme left-wing organization” - was indirectly campaigning on behalf of Likud’s rivals, Zionist Camp and Meretz, thereby circumventing campaign-finance restrictions imposed by law.

    Specifically, the petition said, the organization “is making criminal use of anonymous foreign funding in extremely large amounts.” The petition also demanded that V15 reveal its funding sources.

    There may be further backfire, precisely the opposite of what Mr. Robinson predicts. Barack Obama and company are not exactly popular in Israel.

    Meanwhile, as for the “backlash” against the Netanyahu invitation, the claim that Obama was not consulted has been proven false, but the controversy is certain to draw a lot of attention to Netanyahu’s address. The Prime Minister is a very eloquent advocate (and he doesn’t need a teleprompter). His address may actually help mobilize American public opinion.

    We may be seeing the backlash to the backlash.

    Hat tip: Clarice Feldman


    1. >>>Meanwhile, as for the “backlash” against the Netanyahu invitation, the claim that Obama was not consulted has been proven false, but the controversy is certain to draw a lot of attention to Netanyahu’s address. The Prime Minister is a very eloquent advocate (and he doesn’t need a teleprompter). His address may actually help mobilize American public opinion.<<<

    2. .

      More from the American Thinker, the usual suspects issuing the usual lies.


    3. You forgot the "racist" part.

      Are you going to crash the half time show at the Big Game tomorrow, Quirk?

      Drop in by parachute, or something?

      That was quite the climb you just pulled off up frozen Niagara Falls, by the way.


    4. To this end, it hired Jeremy Bird, the national field director of U.S. President Barack Obama’s 2012 campaign, to organize its efforts.

      this is true, just as james carville was sent to do the same.

    5. .

      You have repeated this same bull a half a dozen times between you.

      Obama stopped running in 2012 twelve. He hasn't had a national field director for years. Bird has his own consulting firm. And based on his success in the 2012 Obama campaign and his media savvy and expertise in demographics he has a large and diverse clientele.

      You offer up meaningless factoids and imply that because of past connections Obama is running the 'dump Bibi' campaign in Israel. They feed you guys this stuff over at AIPAC and frontpagemag and you suck it down like Kool-aid.


    6. .

      this is true, just as james carville was sent to do the same.

      I haven't seen this story but Carville is a Clinton flunky not Obama's.


    7. Quirk, I guess there is no "democratic" machine....

      Obama stopped running in 2012? Then why does he have a political organization still?


      Organizing for America

      Sometimes quirk you are just such a moron.

  20. Not so 'quick and easy' -

    >>>>The big question now is when will ISIL forces be driven out of Mosul, Iraq’s second city, whose spectacular fall in June led to the collapse of the Iraqi army, built up at a cost of $8 billion (Dh29.4bn). The new Iraqi government of prime minister Haider Al Abadi is understandably keen to show it can wipe out the stain of the loss of Mosul, and there are many voices calling for a spring offensive to liberate the city.

    The anti-ISIL coalition put together by the Americans is keenly aware that the Iraqi army does not yet have enough trained soldiers to take the city and hold it, nor the police to root out ISIL sympathisers. The Iraqi army has only one throw of the dice – failure would set Iraq back on course for state collapse. These concerns may explain why the British foreign secretary, Philip Hammond, has said it will take two years to drive ISIL out of Iraq.<<<

    There will be no swift victory over ISIL in Mosul

    Alan Philps

    January 29, 2015 Updated: January 31, 2015 07:09 PM


  21. .

    It is generally accepted that it was the unholy troika of Clinton, Rice, and Powers who pressured Obama into attacking Libya. Though, at the time, this information was widely discussed in numerous publications and blogs, at least one here who was likely out poisoning wolves at the time somehow seems to have missed the memo.

    Now we have this,

    War is a terrible thing, as everyone who has ever been in one can testify, but war can tempt a president, and sometimes merely someone with the itch to be a president, as a way to burnish a warrior credential.

    The temptation of Hillary Clinton is revealed in several remarkable audio tapes recovered in Tripoli, of conversations revealing how several key members of Congress and the Pentagon stood in the way of a march to unnecessary and needless war in Libya.

    The Joint Chiefs of Staff, as reported Thursday by The Washington Times, opened their own channels of communication with the regime of Moammar Gadhafi to avoid military conflict. They told the Libyan government that Mrs. Clinton and the State Department were determined to pursue a military solution and were preventing crucial intelligence from getting to the president.

    This was an unusual if not unprecedented attempt to bypass the State Department and its role as the sole voice to speak to foreign governments. Rarely if ever has an American president allowed competing departments of the government to speak in the name of his administration. The Pentagon, for its part, clearly thought it was being pushed into a conflict on Mrs. Clinton’s false assumptions...

    Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/jan/29/editorial-hillary-clintons-war-in-libya/#ixzz3QQmft6ij
    Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter


    1. Wayne and I were out guarding the stockyard at that time, it is true. We had formed a triangular defense perimeter with the help of Wayne's son.

      Off to a Chinese lunch !

      Cheers !

  22. QuirkSat Jan 31, 02:28:00 PM EST

    IN 50 years? There will be no arab left who calls themselves "palestinian" or Jordain either...

    That's the plan. Has been since the beginning.

    Quirk, the arabs had the opportunity multiple times to have a state called "palestine", they refused it.

    Not the plan, but the reality when you elevate a fake nationalistic propaganda champaign into a "semi-real" nationalistic agenda.

    Palestinian arabs for palestine is dying of it's own frankenstein's design.

    1. .

      I disagree.

      We have discussed this many times before.


    2. I dont believe it's a grand plan.

      If the arabs had sought true genuine peace?

      They could have had a state, but they do not want to make any compromises.

      If they do want to compromise, please tell me where, I would love to learn of the great offers of peace by abbas or arafat

    3. Ben-Gurion declared. "Why should the Arabs make peace?
      If I were an Arab leader I would never make terms with Israel.

      That is natural: we have taken their country.
      Sure, God promised it to us, but what does that matter to them?
      Our God is not theirs. We come from Israel, it's true, but two thousand years ago, and what is that to them?

      There has been antisemitism, the Nazis, Hitler, Auschwitz, but was that their fault?

      They only see one thing: we have come here and stolen their country.
      Why should they accept that?


    4. When Jack can't say anything he posts as Anonymous...

      Pretty pathetic

    5. When "O"rdure cannot say anything, he posts anyway.
      Worse than pathetic, it is megalomania personified.

  23. The Palestinians left their homes in 1947–49 for a variety of reasons. Thousands of wealthy Arabs left in anticipation of a war, thousands more responded to Arab leaders’ calls to get out of the way of the advancing armies, a handful were expelled, but most simply fled to avoid being caught in the cross fire of a battle.

    Many Arabs claim that 800,000 to 1,000,000 Palestinians became refugees in 1947–49. The last census taken by the British in 1945 found approximately 1.2 million permanent Arab residents in all of Palestine. A 1949 census conducted by the government of Israel counted 160,000 Arabs living in the new state after the war. In 1947, a total of 809,100 Arabs lived in the same area.1 This meant no more than 650,000 Palestinian Arabs could have become refugees. A report by the UN Mediator on Palestine arrived at an even lower refugee figure—472,000. 2

  24. The number of Jews fleeing Arab countries for Israel in the years following Israel’s independence was nearly double the number of Arabs leaving Palestine. Many Jews were allowed to take little more than the shirts on their backs. These refugees had no desire to be repatriated. Little is heard about them because they did not remain refugees for long. Of the 820,000 Jewish refugees between 1948 and 1972, 586,000 were resettled in Israel at great expense, and without any offer of compensation from the Arab governments who confiscated their possessions. 4 Israel has consequently maintained that any agreement to compensate the Palestinian refugees must also include Arab reparations for Jewish refugees. To this day, the Arab states have refused to pay anything to the hundreds of thousands of Jews who were forced to abandon their property before fleeing those countries. Through 2014, at least 173 of the almost 1,000 UN General Assembly resolutions on the Middle East conflict referred directly to Palestinian refugees.5 Even in 2014, the Jewish refugees from Arab countries have not been mentioned in any significant UN resolution.

  25. In numerous instances, Jewish leaders urged the Arabs to remain in Palestine and become citizens of Israel. The Assembly of Palestine Jewry issued this appeal on October 2, 1947:

    We will do everything in our power to maintain peace, and establish a cooperation gainful to both [Jews and Arabs]. It is now, here and now, from Jerusalem itself, that a call must go out to the Arab nations to join forces with Jewry and the destined Jewish State and work shoulder to shoulder for our common good, for the peace and progress of sovereign equals. 6

    On November 30, the day after the UN partition vote, the Jewish Agency announced: “The main theme behind the spontaneous celebrations we are witnessing today is our community’s desire to seek peace and its determination to achieve fruitful cooperation with the Arabs. . . .” 7

    Israel’s Proclamation of Independence, issued May 14, 1948, also invited the Palestinians to remain in their homes and become equal citizens in the new state:

    In the midst of wanton aggression, we yet call upon the Arab inhabitants of the State of Israel to preserve the ways of peace and play their part in the development of the State, on the basis of full and equal citizenship and due representation in all its bodies and institutions. . . . We extend our hand in peace and neighborliness to all the neighboring states and their peoples, and invite them to cooperate with the independent Jewish nation for the common good of all.

    1. Quirk, where are the calls from the arab world, you know, the OTHER 899/900th of the middle east begging for their Jews to stay...

      1/900 of the land Israel.

      899/900th arab world

      Today? 1.2 MILLION Arabs are citizens of Israel.

      Today? There are less than 3000 Jews in all of the Arab world....

      Facts speak clearer than bullshit.

    2. Today? 1.2 MILLION Arabs are citizens of Israel.

      Today? There are less than 3000 Jews in all of the Arab world....


      Yes, facts speak clearer than bullshit.

      We should all remember these numbers.

      Deuce, memorize those numbers.

      When Jews can build synagogues in Saudi Arabia...............

    3. No Arabs are immigrating to Israel, you fool. Israel has taken their lands and they have been enveloped in the expansion. It is no different from the Russians taking over Crimea. There are Palestinians in Israel because Israel has taken over Palestine.

      Get your head out of your dumb ass and look up immigration policies of Israel and demonstrate and report to us how an Arab or Palestinian emigrates to Israel.

    4. Lying Zionist bullshit. Twist, distort and lie and non-thinking dolts parroting without bothering to engage their dulled brain with a smidgeon of critical analysis and intellectual skepticism.

    5. 1/900 of the middle east.

      899/900 for the arabs.

      1/900 for the jews.

      and almost ZERO jews left in the arab world

      1.2 MILLIOn arabs in Israel as equal citizens.

      refute that.

      go ahead deuce.

      Show me where the arab world DIDNT throw out the Jews that lived there BEFORE the arabs crawled out of arabia in 640 ce..

      SHOW ME.

    6. Deuce: Get your head out of your dumb ass and look up immigration policies of Israel and demonstrate and report to us how an Arab or Palestinian emigrates to Israel.

      Arab and palestinians have 22 other nations to live in.

      What the fuck should an arab emigrate to Israel for?

      The already have 899/900th of the land of the middle east.

      greedy pricks.

      Sorry deuce, but arabs and Palestinians are not welcome to emigrate to Israel.

      And btw Israelis are not welcome in any of the 899/900th of the arab world

    7. You rob a bank and get caught with the $25,000 grand and argue that the bank still has 899/900th of its capital.

    8. That's ur problem. You do not believe that the Jews have a right to nationhood

    9. Deuce ☂Sat Jan 31, 09:04:00 PM EST
      You rob a bank and get caught with the $25,000 grand and argue that the bank still has 899/900th of its capital.

      So by your analogy the arabs OWE the Jews 1/2 of all the wealth of the middle east.

      2 brothers, One dad.

      Both to be inheritors

      So 1/2 of the middle east is OWED to the Jews.

      pony up you greedy pricks... pony up

  26. QuirkSat Jan 31, 03:27:00 PM EST


    I disagree.

    We have discussed this many times before.


    I's true. Quirk has been wrong on this subject many times before, WiO.

  27. Show us how a Russian Jew can go to Israel and show us how a Palestinian, living in Syria can join his Israeli Jewish girlfriend. Show us the law.

    1. Arabs that do not LIVE in Israel do not have a right to MOVE to Israel even if they marry an Israeli.

      They are a security risk.

      Now show us, in the other 899/900 of the middle east one place a Jew can live in safety and freedom.

      Show us.

      Anywhere in the 899/-900th of the arab conquered land, that they give Jews true equal rights, to own property, to even g-d forbid, be zionists!!!

      Show me.

      You folks are such greedy pricks, 899.900th aint enough for you...

      Israel is but a tiny sliver of the middle east and is 20%, but that aint enough for you and your greedy bastard of friends.

      You decry Israel's right to be, you decry racism in in 1/900th of middle east when you IGNORE what 21/22 arab states actually are.

      Racist, apartheid states against Jews, Christians and those that renounce Islam.

    2. .

      Arabs that do not LIVE in Israel do not have a right to MOVE to Israel even if they marry an Israeli.

      They are a security risk.


      Why should Arabs and jews not where they choose to live?

      Why indeed.


  28. You can show the preference for Jews to migrate to Israel. Imagine the uproar if the US gave preference to Christian immigrants. It is against US law. You are stuck if you are trying to deal in facts.

    1. Jews have an inherent right to emigrate to Israel.


      Israel was created as a safe haven in the historic land of the Jews as the rest of the arab and western world both excelled in their collective repressive and murderous history in their treatment of the Jew.

      The fact is?

      The world sucks. The world never lifted a finger to help or save the Jews and the lesson so hard learned? Jews and Israel should never trust anyone for their safety as that only gets us dead.

    2. Who did they inherit that inherent right from?

    3. By settling it and living there.

      Don't like it?

      Don't visit.

      Israel has JUST as much right to nationhood as anyone else.

      Now the fake, savage culture and people of the arab palestinians seem to believe they have a RIGHT to a nation without doing the work...

      Now that's balls.

  29. Israel is on the path to where no one will believe them or in their twisted lies.

    1. Israel is on a path to be able to defend it's self from genocide.

      The people who don't like the Jews or Israel?

      Can go fuck themselves.

      And if they seek to destroy or kill Jews or attack Israel?

      I hope they die a painful, tortured death that only brings suffering for their loved ones.

    2. Israel is apartheid, it is an abomination to the free world.
      It will be gone and forgotten, along with the King of Jerusalem.

      Just another Crusader state, in a long line of Crusader states..

    3. Jack you do a great disservice to true apartheid. I can only hope that someday you are treated to real apartheid.

    4. I am not going to visit Palisrael, so it ain't going to happen, "O"rdure.

    5. Well there is no place called "Palisrael" but your living on the indian's land and you are JUST like an Afrikaner.

  30. deuce: There are Palestinians in Israel because Israel has taken over Palestine.

    No there are ARABS that today call themselves Palestinians do to the indoctrination and subversive threat by fellow arabs.

    Even Israel arabs that say something positive in Israel are threatened with death by their fellow arabs...

    1. Deuce you remind me of the boy who cried wolf.

      As we speak, Palestinians in syria are being butchered by Iranain, Hezbollah and Syrian troops and your panties are in a wad about jews moving to Israel.

      Really, it's you that does NOTHING of service for the Palestinians.

    2. You are babbling nonsensically, again, "O"rdure.

    3. Jack is your name Deuce?


      then shut the fuck up

  31. Airstrikes in Syria, Iraq Destroy ISIL Targets

    From a Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve News Release

    SOUTHWEST ASIA, Jan. 31, 2015 – U.S. and coalition military forces have continued to attack Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorists in Syria and Iraq, Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve officials reported today.

    Officials reported details of the latest strikes, which took place between 8 a.m. yesterday and 8 a.m. today, local time, noting that assessments of results are based on initial reports.

    Airstrikes in Syria

    -- Near Kobani, eight airstrikes struck two ISIL tactical units and an ISIL building and destroyed five ISIL fighting positions, an ISIL vehicle, an ISIL artillery system and an ISIL staging position.

    -- Near Dayr az Zawr, two airstrikes destroyed four ISIL buildings, an ISIL bunker and an ISIL vehicle.

    Airstrikes in Iraq

    -- Near Al Asad, an airstrike destroyed an ISIL rocket tube.

    -- Near Tal Afar, two airstrikes struck an ISIL large tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL vehicle-borne improvised explosive device factory, an ISIL building, six ISIL vehicles, two ISIL heavy weapons and two ISIL pieces of engineer equipment.

    -- Near Balad, an airstrike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed two ISIL armored vehicles and an ISIL vehicle.

    -- Near Mosul, two airstrikes struck two ISIL tactical units.

    -- Near Ramadi, an airstrike struck an ISIL tactical unit.

    -- Near Kirkuk, 10 airstrikes struck two ISIL large tactical units, three ISIL tactical units, four ISIL vehicles, and destroyed an ISIL bunker, three ISIL VBIEDs, an ISIL bulldozer, two ISIL armored vehicles, an ISIL artillery system, seven ISIL fighting positions, four ISIL buildings and four ISIL vehicles.

    Jist stayin' bizzy

  32. I want to know why there are so few Jews in Arab countries.

    Deuce, why is that?

    1. Quirk?

      Can you answer that?

    2. .

      Would you want to live in an Arab country?


    3. No.

      But that's not an answer.

      Many Jews used to do so, they don't any longer.

      Something happened beginning about 1400 years ago.

    4. QuirkSat Jan 31, 10:00:00 PM EST

      Would you want to live in an Arab country?

      Arabs didn't HAVE countries until the ottoman empire was destroyed by the Brits.

      Sound familiar?

    5. .

      Jews didn't have a country until the Brits cut them out a slice of the land they took from the Ottomans.


    6. Jews didn't have the opportunity until the League of Nations cut out for them to re-esablish.

      No different than the arab nationalistic movement.

    7. .

      That's true, but as you know (hopefully) is that what exists today is not what was conceived by a pollyannish League in the 1920's.


  33. For Quirk, our SuperSalesMan -

    The Psychological Difference Between $12.00 and $11.67
    Consumers are primed to see ".99," but prices that deviate from that format can affect the way they interpret the cost.
    Bourree Lam Jan 30 2015, 7:30 AM ET


    I am wondering whether any of the opinions and theories expressed in the article deviate in any way from Quirk's original ground breaking published privately research on the subject of fleecing consumers: "Fleecing Consumers With Price Tags" QPress LLC 1952 348 pages $29.99

    1. $29.99 paperback

      $109.99 hardback

  34. So Deuce is finally honest. Israel has no right to exist.


    Then there is no reason to argue about anything.

    Deuce's believes that ONLY the Arabs have right's to nationhood.

    Jews do not.

    Thanks Deuce, it's clear now.

  35. QuirkSat Jan 31, 10:00:00 PM EST

    Would you want to live in an Arab country?

    Quirk, more Jews were transferred out of their homes than Palesitnians were "transferred" or left their homes in Israel.

    Population exchanges occur after and during wars since the beginning of time.

    1. .

      I know, shit happens.

      I just can't help responding to some of the stuff you put out here.


  36. .

    Quirk, I guess there is no "democratic" machine....

    Obama stopped running in 2012? Then why does he have a political organization still?

    Oh, you are good, WiO.

    Democratic machine?


    Why in the world would the 'Democratic Machine' want to get on the wrong side of their meal ticket at the Lobby? Heck, they might have to change their vacation plans.

    As for Organizing for America why would Obama worry about some pol from a ME client state when he has so many other things to worry about, you know, trying to convince America to welcome a few million undocumented workers with open arms, or what to do if SCOTUS gives him a hard time on Obamacare, or…well

    Bird? He’s just a hired gun. He’ll work for anyone. If you’ve got enough money you could hire him to help you out with your marketing.

    Get back to us when you get new set of talking points sent out to you.


    1. Good God, Quirk, you ARE losing your touch, not recommending yourself to help out with the marketing.

      What's going with you anyway?

    2. .

      He's a franchisee. I get my share.

      That being said. The guy is actually damn good. He came up with this one on his own.

      He charges aspiring politicians or those who want to learn about campaigning or fundraising $3,500 dollars for a 5 day seminar. Not bad.

      However, here is the genius part.

      For an additional $1,500, he will arrange it so that you can become part of an actual high-profile political campaign as an...wait...wait...an unpaid volunteer.

      I'm not shitting you. It's true.

      I'm going to have to watch out for this guy.


    3. I knew your fingers would be in cherry pie somewhere along the line.

    4. Somewhere 'between the cook and the consumer', as I like to say.

      Reassured and content all I can say is:

      Cheers ! and g'nite

      Super Bowl Tomorrow ! Whoopie !