Tuesday, 28 June 2016

There’s Blood in the Water.



A Palestinian anti-Semitic  blood  libel about Israel and water.

A double crime was committed when Mahmoud Abbas, the Chairman of the Palestinian Authority, an interim self-governing body that undemocraticaly controls the Arabs in sections of Judea & Samaria, spoke before the European Parliament on June 23.

In his speech he spouted a Jew-hating blood libel as medieval in its words as those that led to the massacre and isolation of European Jews in the 14th Century.

Having begun his speech by condemning incitement to violence, he inexplicably said;

“Only a week ago, a number of rabbis in Israel announced, and made a clear announcement, demanding that their government poison the water to kill the Palestinians.”

Here was the Palestinian Arab leader in the European Union capital accusing Jews of poisoning wells, and here the second crime was committed.   The European law-makers received his poisonous words with a standing ovation!

Shame on them!

When Abbas refused to meet Israeli President, Reuven Rivlin, who had extended an invitation to meet as both leaders were in Brussels, his refusal was met with silence rather than an encouragement to meet by Federica Mogherini, the European Union’s acting foreign minister.

So much for the European push for peace that targets Israel but ignores a constant Palestinian non-compliance.

Anti-Semitic slanders are not something new to Mahmoud Abbas. As a younger man he won his degree in Moscow based on a thesis that the Zionists were in cahoots with Hitler and the Nazis. An oblique addendum to Abbas’s 1982 doctorate, which he repeated as recently as 2013, were recent claims by British Labour Party rogue, Ken Livingstone, that “Hitler supported Zionism” in 1932 before going “mad and killing six million Jews.”

When Mahmoud Abbas was exposed, days later, unusually by the New York Times, for inserting lies about non-existent rabbis calling on the Israeli government to poison wells, he recanted but, by then, the damage had been done. Or, more accurately, he had already achieved what he intended in Brussels, namely to score more points against Israel in the international arena.

NYT’s journalist Diana Hadid wrote that the false accusation quoted by Abbas was fed through the PLO website and taken up in Turkey and across the Gulf Arab states.

This is the man who, in September 2015, described Jews on the Temple Mount as “filth.”

“They have no right to defile it with their filthy feet. We will not allow them to, and we will do everything in our power to protect Jerusalem.”

In other words, keep Jerusalem Jew-free.

But what did he mean by “we will not allow them” and “we will do everything in our power to protect Jerusalem.”?
He went on, "We bless every drop of blood that has been spilled for Jerusalem, which is clean and pure blood, blood spilled for Allah, Allah willing. Every Martyr (Shahid) will reach Paradise, and everyone wounded will be rewarded by Allah."

Jew hatred incitement is followed by call to action, to terror, to blood-letting.

And Abbas continued his project in front of rapturous but ignorant European leaders in Brussels with his blood libel of Jews poisoning wells.

Here are the facts.

Every year, the European Union buries the Palestinians with over a billion euros, even as the European economy goes into austerity. Instead of their money going into much needed infrastructure like water development and management, they allow it to be used for propaganda and wild accusations such as Israel poisoning Palestinian wells.

European governments eagerly receive false reports from well-funded NGOs slandering Israel on a whole host of issues and then use these reports as gospel truths about Israeli infringements. These reports made their way into United Nations chambers in which Israel is condemned in never ending anti-Israel resolutions to which the gentile Europeans abstain in the voting to hide their shame.

Not that anti-Israel Israeli NGOs are clear of guilt. Many also are funded by European governments to lie and to incite protests and violence.

A hidden camera video, taken by a member of the Ad Can organization, exposed Yehuda Shaul, the leader of the discredited Breaking the Silence group, telling a group of avid anti-Israel haters the lie that in the ancient Jewish town of Susiya the Arab villagers had just returned “because a few years ago the settlers basically poisoned all the water systems of the village.”

The Gulf News article dealing with the Palestinian  Authority poisoned wells issue claimed that Breaking the Silence had made the accusation, a claim the anti-Israel Israeli group told the Ha’Aretz newspaper they denied. 

Another water libel came from Roy Yellin, the public relations director of B’tselem, an anti-Israeli Israel NGO well-funded by the Europeans who tweeted that “while Palestinians suffer from severe water shortage, settlements swimming pools are full.”

As with all anti-Israel allegations, the perpetrators deliberately tilt facts to favor their propaganda by eliminating nasty truths that spoil their emotional imagery. In Yellin’s case, he failed to disclose the fact that Arabs were happily splashing around in the Palestinian water parks that have been constructed throughout Judea & Samaria. Not to mention the amply supplied swimming pools in many of the private Palestinian villas.

Perhaps somebody should have informed the misguided European parliamentarians that the Palestinian leader that appeared before them has continually rejected Israeli efforts to uphold the signed 1995 water agreement between Israel and the PLO in which both sides would act to improve the water infrastructure in Judea & Samaria.

Wipe these uncomfortable facts off the agenda. Better that Abbas is allowed to continue his vile propaganda, wrapped in anti-Semitic verbiage that is warmly welcomed in Brussels.

Better emotional imagery of victimhood catering to European money than the harsh truths of a corrupt and hateful Palestinian leadership leading the Europeans blindfolded to the bank.


Barry Shaw is the Senior Associate for Public Diplomacy at the Israel Institute for Strategic Studies.
He is the author of ‘Fighting Hamas, BDS and Anti-Semitism’ and the new book ‘BDS for IDIOTS.’






Friday, 24 June 2016

Britain outside the EU: An Israeli perspective.


Britain has voted for an independent Britain.

Money markets crashed as if some disaster had occurred. But what was seen by the unexpected “Leave the EU” vote is the beginning collapse of the EU, an unelected world of bureaucrats who regulate and control the lives of people in Europe.

At the moment the Brits were voting, I was having lunch with a group of Dutch men and women. They expressed their disgust about what is happening in their country and how the decision of their government is controlled by the gnomes of Brussels. They were adamant that their country would be better off away from the EU decision-makers who, they felt, were endangering the social fabric and security of their country over a wrong-headed immigration policy, a policy in chaos with the continuing wave of migrants washing on the shores of Europe from the Middle East and Africa. Many are finding their way to the Netherlands. They are frustrated with the feeling of losing control their country. Nationalism is being revived due to the utter failure of Europe to deal with the dual threats of the migrant crisis and the explosion of Islamic terror.

People are fearful and want out. This was clearly seen in the Brexit vote.

The economy and jobs are vitally important issues as Brits ponder their future outside of the EU. They can be reassured. Norway and Switzerland are two countries who have successful economies and are outside the European Union.

Britain is the second largest economic engine in Europe after Germany. It is an almost three trillion dollar powerhouse. It is hardly a weak horse as is Greece.

The biggest card played by the “Leave” campaigners was that Britain can regain its sovereignty and independence of decision-making and begin to control its own destiny. This confidence is essential at such a crucial time.

Britain will now be able to make free-trade deals with massive trading blocs such as America, China and India, something it was unable to do as part of the restrictions of EU membership. This will be a powerful kick starter to the British economy and jobs. Let’s be honest, Britain-made goods admired and required within Europe will still be in demand by nations within the EU.

Britain can follow the Swiss example. China has a trade agreement with wealthy Switzerland, a country that is European but outside the EU. China does not have a free-trade agreement with the EU. Like Israel, Britain should look eastward.

Israel, a non-EU country, has an Israel-EU Associate Agreement in force since June 2000. It began with services and the free movement of capital. It didn’t take long for this agreement to expand to include the free trade of industrial and later agricultural products. More recently the demand for Israeli technology led to Israel being invited into the Horizon 2020 program of research and innovation in 2014. This has led to a thirty two billion Euro trade in goods between the EU and Israel at the end of 2015.

Outside of Europe, Israel’s trade volume with the United States reached thirty eight billion dollars by the end of 2014.

China did not establish diplomatic relations with Israel until 1992. Trade was almost non-existent at that time, barely fifty million dollars. It has leapt in the last decade to reach over ten billion dollars by 2013, and growing fast. Today, Chinese businessmen and government officials are constantly visiting Israel in search of partnerships and future trade agreements, as are Indian businessmen. Asia awaits!

As for crashing markets, buy shares in British banks and industry, or buy more of your favorite stocks. You'll make money when the markets bounce back.

So what is Israel’s message to Britain?  It is that there is a better life after independence despite the obstacle in front of you. But, that depends on the talent, quality and work ethic of your labor force.

This is the rosy picture that can be Britain’s as it recaptures its independence of action.

Surely, British entrepreneurs and innovators are as talented as ours in Israel, the Start- Up Nation.

Well, almost as talented.

Barry Shaw is the Senior Associate for Public Diplomacy at the Israel Institute for Strategic Affairs.

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Arab nationalism in the words of Lawrence of Arabia.



I am researching and writing a book to be called ‘Battles for the Holy Land - 1917 and beyond.’

The book recalls the exploits of General Allenby and others that led to the liberation of Jerusalem. It’s arrival will be timely as next year will mark a 100 years since that milestone.

The book will feature events from this period in history and the characters that participated in them, including Lawrence of Arabia who raised the standing of the Hashemites under British patronage, but here is what he wrote about Arab nationalism.

Here is a quote I reprise in the book;
“Their idea of nationality is the independence of tribes and parishes and their idea of national union is episodic, combined resistance to an intruder. Constructive politics, an organized state, and an extensive empire are not only beyond their capacity, but anathema to their instincts.
Unless we, or our Allies, make an efficient Arab empire, there will never be more than a discordant mosaic of provisional administrations.”

Irrespective of the mess that the Great Powers made in carving up the Arab world, we can see the mess being made today by the Arabs themselves on themselves.

Look at the divergent Palestinian Arabs. Even in their microcosm they cannot come together to build their own state. They hate and kill each other even as they hate us.

A world that failed to understand the Arabs then should heed the words of T.E.Lawrence echoing to us from a hundred years ago.

His words are as relevant today they were when he wrote them in November 1916.


Barry Shaw is the Senior Associate for Public Diplomacy at the Israel Institute for Strategic Studies. 
Author of 'Fighting Hamas, BDS and Anti-Semitism.'

Sunday, 19 June 2016

Britain, in or out? A view.


Britain votes on Thursday to stay in the EU, or leave.
Discussions have centered on the economic consequences. Figures have been thrown at both sides of the argument.
The economy and jobs are vitally important issues as Brits ponder their future.
Here is a brief view from an Israeli perspective.

Britain is the second largest economic engine in Europe after Germany. It is an almost three trillion dollar powerhouse. It is hardly a weak horse as, say, Greece.

The biggest card being played by the “Leave” spokespeople is one of a Britain that can regain its sovereignty and begin to control the destiny and decision-making of its own nation.

Should the Brexit vote prevail, Britain will be able to make free-trade deals with massive trading blocs such as America, China and India, something it is unable to do as part of the restrictions of EU membership. This would be a powerful kick starter to the British economy and jobs. Let’s be honest, if Britain is producing goods required within Europe these items will still be in demand by nations within the EU.

Taking a reverse view, China has a trade agreement with wealthy Switzerland, a country that is European but outside the EU. China does not have a free-trade agreement with the EU.

Israel, naturally a non-EU country, has an Israel-EU Associate Agreement in force since June 2000. It began with services and the free movement of capital. It didn’t take long for this agreement to expand to include the free trade of industrial and later agricultural products. More recently, the demand for Israeli technology led to Israel being invited into the Horizon 2020 program of research and innovation in 2014. This has led to a thirty two billion Euro trade in goods between the EU and Israel at the end of 2015.

Outside of Europe, Israel’s trade volume with the United States reached thirty eight billion dollars by the end of 2014.

China did not establish diplomatic relations with Israel until 1992. Trade was almost non-existent at that time, barely fifty million dollars. It has leapt in the last decade to reach over ten billion dollars by 2013, and growing fast. Today, Chinese businessman and government officials are constantly visiting Israel in search of partnerships and future trade agreements.

This is the rosy picture that can be Britain’s if it chooses to recapture its independence of action. Surely, British entrepreneurs and innovators are as talented as ours – well, almost.


Barry Shaw is the Senior Associate for Public Diplomacy at the Israel Institute for Strategic Affairs.

Friday, 10 June 2016

Palestinian ambitions conflict with Israeli liberal progressive values.



When Israel displays so-called “liberal progressive values” to people intent on attacking our state and killing Jews the direct and immediate result is Palestinian terror and the murder of Israelis.

When the Israeli government lifted restrictions on Palestinians as a gesture during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan Palestinian Arabs, particularly those belonging to Hamas, exploited the gesture by disguising themselves, arming themselves, traveling into the heart of Tel Aviv, perhaps the most liberal progressive city in Israel, to kill and injure Israelis, including many who have supported their cause.

When the terrorists entered the busy Sarona entertainment center they entered the soft underbelly of Israel and mingled with the part of Israeli society who have bought into the notion that Israel should not “occupy” the Palestinians, that it is wrong to “oppress” them. In other words, these liberal-minded Israelis have failed to understand the  Palestinian narrative that, by living in Israel, according to the killers and those who motivated them, they are illegally occupying Palestine, even in Tel Aviv.

These Israelis, shockingly including Ron Huldai, the mayor of liberal progressive Tel Aviv, think that the terror outrage was a result of “Israeli occupation.” They have blinded themselves to the fact that both side of the Palestinian political divide look on Israel as “Palestinian occupied territory.” 

Palestinian terrorists do not perform their gruesome acts out of a felling of hopelessness. The opposite is true. They are performing the ultimate act of hope, the hope of contributing to an end of Israel with their violence and murder. 

It is eighty seven years since the 1929 massacre of Jews in Hebron by fanatical Arabs driven by Jew hatred. It is no coincidence that the deadly Tel Aviv attack on Jews was perpetrated by Arabs from Hebron. The Jew hatred is old but it is as violent today as it was almost a century ago.

To the Palestinian leadership, both Hamas and the Palestinian Authority, there is no such thing as an Israeli Arab. They are, in their language “Palestinians of the Interior” or “Palestinians of “48” symbolizing the Arabs that remained when five Arab armies invaded the nascent Jewish state of Israel in 1948 in order to destroy it.

That is why Mahmoud Abbas, the undemocratic Chairman of the Palestinian Authority, elected to a four year term nine years ago, cannot, and will not, recognize Israel as the Jewish state. To do so would put an end to the final solution of the Jewish problem in the Middle East, namely the establishment of a Palestine on all the land they desire. Accepting a Palestinian state on what are called “1967 lines” is simply a temporary stage on the way to completing the task of eliminating Israel. Just look at Palestinian maps, read what they are teaching their children. Their “Palestine” includes Jaffa, Haifa, Acre and the Galilee. They have even turned the wandering Bedouin of the Negev into Palestinians.

They are supported in this by hundreds of foreign support groups including the BDS Movement led by Omar Barghouti who has publicly stated that “Definitely, most definitely, we oppose a Jewish state in any part of Palestine. No Palestinian, not a sell-out Palestinian, will ever accept a Jewish state.”  

That is why you hear the chant on the streets of Europe and the United States from radical Palestinian supporters of “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.”

Words have meaning and these words mean that Palestine will only be free when Israel no longer exists.

These words fully support the PLO Charter which states, “Palestine, with the borders it had during the British Mandate (i.e. prior to 1922!!) is an indivisible territorial unit.”

Little wonder then that the Arabs opposed the UN Partition Plan of 1947. This Palestinian ambition continues today, even if the way to fulfilling that ambition means killing Jews along the way. It is written and ordered in the Hamas Charter, “O Muslim! There is a Jew hiding behind me. Come out and kill him!”

That is precisely what the Hamas killers did in Tel Aviv.

The PLO Charter calls for “armed resistance.” The act perpetrated by the Palestinian murderers was precisely that. Bloody acts of terror are acts of “armed resistance.”

So don’t be fooled when BDS activists tell you they are a “non-violent” protest movement in support of the Palestinian cause. They are lying. Their leader Barghouti has openly said, “Palestinians have the right to resistance by any means, including armed resistance.”

These threats are not abstract. They are real and are ongoing, and are backed by violent action.

In the aftermath of this Palestinian terror outrage the Israeli government has re-imposed travel restrictions. I suppose we will hear an outcry that Israel is imposing a “collective punishment” on the Palestinians. Let them cry about it. What the Israeli government has done is impose collective safety on myself, my family and friends.

If that keeps us safe from murderous people baying for my blood I can live without the label of being called a liberal progressive.

Barry Shaw is the Senior Associate for Public Diplomacy at the Israel Institute for Strategic Studies.  He is also the author of ‘Fighting Hamas, BDS and Anti-Semitism’ and the new best-seller ‘BDS for IDIOTS.’