Syria next to make peace with Israel? Negotiations may be underway, report says

September 30, 2020 Syria next to make peace with Israel? Negotiations may be underway, report saysSyrian President Bashar Assad (AP/SANA)

“The road to Washington always passes through Tel Aviv,” said Ibrahim Hamidi, senior diplomatic editor at Asharq Al-Awsat.

By Josh Plank, World Israel News

A widespread belief has emerged recently in diplomatic corridors about the presence of secret negotiations between Israel and Syria, the London-based Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper reported Sunday.

Ibrahim Hamidi, Asharq Al-Awsat‘s senior diplomatic editor, said that Syria sent the first explicit “peaceful signal” after the signing of the Israeli agreements with the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain.

Contrary to its ally, Iran, Syria did not issue an official condemnation of the Abraham Accords.

“It remained silent,” Hamidi said. “Silence here is a political stance.”

Hamidi noted that modern history has shown that whenever Syria was on the brink of major transformations or isolation, the only “way out” was to resume negotiations with Israel.

“The road to Washington always passes through Tel Aviv,” Hamidi said, citing two historic examples.

In 2008, Israel and Syria engaged in secret negotiations, through which Syria intended to break its state of isolation after the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri in 2005.

Syria also entered into direct negotiations with Israel in 2000, after the collapse of the Soviet Union led to transformations in the region and the world.

Neither effort led to a lasting peace agreement, but did serve to lessen Syrian isolation on the world stage.

Hamidi said that both U.S. and Russian sponsorship would be needed for renewed Israeli-Syrian negotiations.

Any negotiations would likely focus on the future of the Iranian presence in Syria as well as the status of the Golan Heights.

The U.S. formally recognized Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights in 2019.

“This should have been done numerous presidents ago,” said President Donald Trump at the time.

Israel liberated the Golan Heights from Syria in the 1967 Six-Day War and officially applied sovereignty to the area in 1981.

Syria has never recognized the State of Israel or Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights and has threatened to attack Israel unless it withdraws from the area.

Syria has been involved in an ongoing multi-sided civil war since 2011.

Spies Smuggle Jewish Bibles Out of Syria

This week a court ruled that the Damascus Bibles must stay in the Israel’s National Library.

By Ezra Stone, United with Israel

In a daring mission 27 years ago, Israeli spies, a Canadian activist, and a rabbi spirited nine rare Jewish texts called the “Damascus Crowns” out of the Syrian capital and into the Land of Israel.

The death-defying mission spared the manuscripts destruction or desecration at the hands of the Assad regime and any of the Islamic terror groups, from Hezbollah to ISIS, that have operated in Syria during the past quarter century.

This week an Israeli rule that the medieval books must stay under the control of Israel’s National Library.

The Damascus Crowns consist of the Tanach, or the Jewish Bible, which encompasses Judaism’s 24 canonical books. This edition was written on parchment in the 13th century CE and was the property of Damascus’ Jewish community, which fled Syria during the decades following the establishment of the State of Israel due to brutal pogroms, discriminatory anti-Semitic laws, wide-scale property theft, and other forms of persecution.

As of 2019, there were no known Jews living in Syria, despite the fact that it had been home to a thriving community for centuries.

In the 1980s and 1990s, Chief Rabbi of the Syrian community Avraham Hamra oversaw the clandestine removal of a trove of Jewish holy objects to Israel, including nine bible manuscripts, 40 Torah scrolls, and 32 ornamental boxes that housed the Torahs. The holy items are housed in the National Library and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem Library.

On Monday the Jerusalem District Court ruled that the Damascus Crowns, are “treasures of the Jewish people” that have”historic, religious and national importance” and must be protected, The Associated Press reported.

“The trust and its conditions are aimed at ensuring first and foremost the preservation of the Damascus Crowns and their care for the public, the Jewish people and future generations,” the court added.

The mission that delivered these treasures included the Mossad spy agency, which worked with Canadian Judy Feld Carr and Rabbi Hamra.

“Feld Carr said that in 1993 she coordinated with Hamra to give one of the manuscripts to a Canadian diplomat, who slipped it out of Syria in a black plastic shopping bag,” AP reported.

While Syria has not attempted to get the Crowns back, Rabbi Hamra sought custody of them. He claims Israeli officials promised he could keep the books and place them in a Syrian Jewry cultural center outside of a Tel Aviv.

The court ruled that the Crowns must stay in Jerusalem. Trustees of the items will include Rabbi Hamra, other members of the Syrian Jewish community in Israel, National Library representatives, the chief Sephardic rabbi of Israel, and Hebrew University’s president.

Saar: ‘Autonomy yes, state no’

Arutz Sheva – Israel National News

Shimon Cohen, 29/01/19 19:05

Gideon Sa’ar supports canceling ambiguity in Syria, demands Gantz express clear positions, says ‘There’s no division in Likud.’




Flash 90

Former minister and political security cabinet member Gideon Sa’ar spoke to Arutz Sheva about a series of issues from Likud primaries to Benny Gantz’s speech to Israeli policy in Judea and Samaria and the northern border.

Sa’ar began the conversation with reference to the difficult incident in Jerusalem where a synagogue was desecrated, a Holy Ark broken into, and holy books vandalized. We asked Sa’ar if the cause of the act might be growing polarization in Israeli society in light of the election campaign. Sa’ar is in no hurry to judge:

“I don’t want to get into speculation because facts aren’t known and the conjectures aren’t helpful, but I want to express shock at the harsh images. I can’t believe such things are happening here in the Land of Israel and I’m convinced the police will act decisively to locate and punish the criminals – sick souls infected with terrible hatred.”

As for Benny Gantz’s speech, we asked Sa’ar if he did not find a connection between Gantz’s There’s no Left and no Right campaign and Meir Shitrit’s statements when Kadima was founded, on striving for a party that has no “baggage” as he put it, of Jabotinsky or Katznelson.

In Sa’ar’s opinion, the statement that emerges from Gantz’s campaign is more serious than Shitrit’s statement: “Here we’re told more than Shitrit’s words, that there is no Right and no Left here; this is absurd, because there is a Right and there is a Left, there were always Left and Right and always there will be. Or he has no worldview or path but he wants to blur it, hide it, and mislead the voters.

“Out of respect for Gantz’s many years in the IDF uniform, I say it’s good that people who want to contribute and have rich life experience come along, but the ideological path is very important. It’s the most important thing. What’s your way? Are you for or against establishing another Arab state? Are you in favor of strengthening settlement? What are your positions on the tradition of Israel? In these things there is Right and Left, and people have to choose between them after a penetrating clarification that must be conducted in respectful language,” says Sa’ar, emphasizing that “in everyday life there are many ideological issues that require reference and decision.”

Sa’ar with supporters at Likud event

Flash 90

Perhaps, we asked, so much support for Gantz’s party before he expressed himself indicates the desire of the general public to find leadership that’s not clearly located on the Right or on the Left, but rather one whose statements are more obscure. Perhaps the general public is fed up with the struggles of the Right and the Left? Sa’ar replies: “The public is much more intelligent, the citizens want answers on social and economic issues, and the public has the right to hear answers to decide between the different paths, and I tell Ganz and his friends, do you have a path? Present it and let’s argue.” He believes the past experience of the Israeli public, which has been disappointed by leaders who have dulled down their position, will also be reflected in the upcoming vote at the polls.

On reports that Gantz is expected to call the government of Israel in his speech a corrupt government that is dividing the people, Sa’ar was asked to take a stand: “He hasn’t yet said what he has to say and I wouldn’t like to address what hasn’t yet been said. Even this refusal to relate to what hasn’t yet been said is part of serious discourse. With this I think there’s no room for collective accusations, which isn’t right for any public.”

On the possibility that Gantz’s might join Lapid, Sa’ar says it’s quite possible such a union should bother the right-wing and the Likud less. Sa’ar estimates that a joint run will reveal some of Gantz’s hidden positions. “The public knows better what Lapid’s views on tradition and the Land of Israel are and doesn’t know what Ganz’s positions are. Joining would be to their disadvantage.”

From here, the conversation revolves around the political issue and assessments that after the US elections the American president will present his political plan and the right way to respond to this plan. Gideon Sa’ar also notes that seriousness requires hearing the plan and only then responding.

“I have to say that I told American Ambassador David Friedman that I oppose establishing an Arab state in the heart of the Land of Israel, I believe this is dangerous and won’t lead to peace. I hope this administration that is very friendly to Israel won’t repeat mistakes made by previous administrations such as the Clinton and Obama administrations that presented guidelines based on establishment of a Palestinian state in Judea and Samaria.

“I proposed alternative ideas that are regional arrangements based on existing states and not on establishing another Arab state in the heart of the Land of Israel,” Sa’ar said. “Since thirty years ago, the Arabs of Judea and Samaria were Jordanian citizens and the one who deprived them of their citizenship is the Jordanian King,” he said. “We can consider a connection between autonomy and Jordan.”

Sa’ar sees the dangers of a Palestinian state not only from the security aspect but also from the demographic point of view, since it has the ability to open its gates to absorb millions of Muslims. “This is a very dangerous scenario of loss of security and demographic control,” Sa’ar says, noting that his position was clarified in his talks with the American Ambassador.

“They tell us in a somewhat demagogic way, do you want a binational state? It’s like giving a person a choice whether to commit suicide by strangulation or shooting. There’s no need to commit suicide on a binational state or by establishing another Arab state. The Palestinian autonomous government may have a connection to Jordan within the framework of a regional arrangement. It cannot be that our enemies have security and demographic control over the territory.”

Gideon Sa’ar and Rabbi Yitzchok Dovid Grossman

Flash 90

Sa’ar also rejected the idea of ​​a “state minus” that was heard in the past: “A lot of slogans are being thrown around. They say ‘a state minus’, which means a demilitarized state. I ask the same people: Is Gaza demilitarized after the Israeli withdrawal? The power building there that threatens Israel and its citizens only grows. We mustn’t do anything like this in Judea and Samaria. If I’m elected as a public representative I will act to prevent such a danger and to implement the decision of the Likud Central Committee to impose Israeli sovereignty over Jewish settlement areas in Judea, Samaria, and the Jordan Valley. The issue of the Palestinian state in the Land of Israel should be removed from the agenda. It will not happen and we won’t let it happen. Autonomy yes; a state, no. Even today they have autonomy where they control civilian and municipal life, but in the areas of security and demography, we cannot allow them independence.”

As a member of the security cabinet in the past, Gideon Sa’ar was asked about the policy of ambiguity that seems to have dissipated vis-à-vis the Syrian arena: “Not only do I have no problem with this, but I think it’s correct, and I’ll explain: There wasn’t exactly ambiguity beforehand. It was clear that Israel was opposed to Iranian consolidation in Syria and was acting by means of attacks to prevent this establishment. Reality has changed. There was a long civil war and there was chaos, and there were Israeli military operations under the term ‘battle between wars’. Today things have stabilized, the internal war has been decided, the survival of the Assad regime has been assured, and there’s no question of who’s working with the Iranian elements.”

In his opinion, canceling ambiguity is important because “Iran’s trying to create capability for a qualitative strike on the Israeli home front from neighboring countries like Syria and Lebanon, because it’s far from here and wants to hit any target in Israel from the front line. We cannot allow this and we must be determined to prevent it. Therefore I not only back the IDF operations under the government’s guidance, but also think they should be intensified, because in a year’s time conditions won’t be better, and all the players must understand our determination on this issue. I believe the Russians will respect those who will be determined in this struggle.”

Toward the end of the conversation we asked Sa’ar about the internal struggle in the Likud, whether the tense feelings had already dissipated between the Netanyahu camp and the Sa’ar camp, which marked the beginning of his return to the political arena. Sa’ar replies: “There’s no tension on my part, there’s no division in the movement, we’re all one camp that must ensure the victory of the Likud and the national camp headed by Prime Minister Netanyahu, and so I’ll act in the future after the primaries are over. We’ll face a battle that won’t be easy because it’s vital for the future of Israel that the right wing and the Likud at its center continue to lead Israel in the coming years.”

On one issue Saar refuses to speak absolutely, that is the issue of the ministry he wants to receive in the next government: “I don’t talk about this, the bear hasn’t yet been hunted, so there’s no reason to divide up his hide,” he says.

Gideon Sa’ar

Flash 90
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The Lost Jewish Communities of the Arab world

This memorial day commemorates the tragedy of people who were forced to flee from their homes and to leave the countries where they had lived for millennia, solely because of their Jewish identity. ?


The lost Jewish communities of the Arab worldThis memorial day commemorates the tragedy of people who were forced to flee from their homes and to leave the countries where they had lived for millennia, solely because of their Jewish identity. ​
The lost Jewish communities of the Arab world
​On 30 November, Israel and the Jewish world remember the fate of more than 850,000 Jews who were forced out of Arab countries and Iran in the 20th century.
This memorial day commemorates the tragedy of people who were forced to flee from their homes and to leave the countries where they had lived for millennia, solely because of their Jewish identity. Many were deprived of their belongings and many suffered from violence and persecution.
The story of the expulsion of entire Jewish communities from Arab lands is an important part of modern Jewish history that profoundly affected the Jewish nation as a whole as well as the demographic composition of the Middle East and North Africa. This is a story that has to be told.
Current research estimates that the number of Jews living in Arab countries and Iran totaled more than 850,000 at the time of Israel’s independence. Some scholars even think the number is closer to one million. In the North African region, 259,000 Jews fled from Morocco, 140,000 from Algeria, 100,000 from Tunisia, 75,000 from Egypt, and another 38,000 from Libya. In the Middle East, 135,000 Jews were exiled from Iraq, 55,000 from Yemen, 34,000 from Turkey, 20,000 from Lebanon and 18,000 from Syria. Iran forced out 25,000 Jews.
The following descriptions typify what Jews living in Arab countries and Iran went through in the 1940s and following Israel’s declaration of independence up to the second half of the 20th century.
In Iraq, where a large community of Jews lived for 2600 years, violent riots known as the Farhud erupted in June 1941, targeting the Jewish population, mainly in Bagdad.  Dejected soldiers of a failed coup took advantage of a power vacuum and swarmed into Jewish communities together with a bloodthirsty mob, killing 179 innocent people, injuring more than 2,100, and leaving 242 children orphans. This act of violence was celebrated across the Arab world and in Nazi Germany.
In 1948 as a response to UNGA Resolution 181 (“the Partition Plan”)  and Israel’s independence, laws were passed making Zionism a criminal offense, allowing the police to raid and search thousands of Jewish homes for any evidence of Zionism. Jews were removed from thousands of government positions and their homes were valued at 80% less than those of their Arab neighbors.
In the years 1948-1951, over 120,000 Iraqi Jews immigrated to Israel to forge a new life. In doing so, they forfeited their citizenship and (after March 1951) their property. The ancient Jewish community in Iraq (which at one time constituted nearly one-third of the total population of Baghdad) is now non-existent.
The story of the Jewish population of Egypt is similar. In the 1940s, hostility against the Egyptian Jewish community, which numbered around 80,000 people, increased. Laws were passed setting limitations for employing Egyptians of Jewish descent, as well as requiring majority shareholders of companies to be Egyptian nationals. Since Jews were denied citizenship as a rule, many Jews lost their jobs and businesses.
During the 1948 War of Independence, thousands of Egyptian Jews were put into internment camps, forced from their jobs, and arrested for supposed collaboration with an enemy state, Jewish synagogues, homes, and businesses were bombed; many Jews were killed and wounded. More than 14,000 Jews immigrated to Israel during this time seeking safety. Between 1948 and 1958, more than 35,000 Jews fled Egypt. While much of this immigration was due to systematic oppression, another contribution factor was Zionism and the desire to live in the newly reestablished Jewish homeland in Israel.
Between 1956 and 1968 another 38,000 Jews fled Egypt, mostly to Israel, to escape systematic injustices such as government expropriation of their homes and businesses and arbitrary arrests of Jewish citizens.
The Yemeni Jews faced some of the worst persecution. At the end of November 1947, the Arab population of Aden in Yemen decided to hold a 3-day strike in protest against UNGA Resolution 181 (the Partition Plan). The protest quickly turned violent. Over 80 innocent Yemeni Jews were slaughtered, over 100 Jewish-owned businesses were completely looted, and homes, schools, and synagogues were burnt to the ground. This was one of the most violent attacks on any Jewish population in the Arab world.
A unique and creative solution was found for saving the persecuted Yemeni Jews. From 1949 to 1950, the Israeli government enacted Operation Magic Carpet (known in Hebrew as “On the Wings of Eagles”). The operation was implemented by US and British aircraft, which flew to Aden and airlifted the Jews from Yemen to Israel. By the end of the operation, over 47,000 Yemeni Jews were rescued from persecution and taken to their new home in the State of Israel.
Jews had lived in Libya for more than 2,300 years, and had a thriving culture, with a population of over 37,000. During World War II, The Libyan regime implemented their own Nazi-inspired holocaust, where more than 2,000 Jews were transported to desert concentration camps, and hundreds of them died. In post-war Libya, Arab nationalism grew in popularity, resulting in violent pogroms against the Jewish community. In 1945, in the city of Tripoli, more than 140 Jews were killed in a violent antisemitic riot, and a few years later in 1948, another pogrom erupted, resulting in 12 Jewish deaths and the destruction of over 280 Jewish homes. In the three years between 1948 and 1951, 30,972 Jews fled to Israel due to the hostile Arab government of Libya.
Remembering their stories
The descendants of these immigrants from Arab countries now account for a majority of Israel’s Jewish population. The Jewish exiles who were forced to flee their homes overcame personal and communal tragedy and not only persevered, but thrived; many have risen to important positions in the national government and in the public and private sectors. They have made an invaluable contribution to the fabric of Israeli society, and their vibrant cultures are an integral part of the colorful mosaic of the Jewish people in the Land of Israel. It is time for the world to hear their story.

Israel Warns Tehran:

‘We will not allow Iran to remain in Syria’

After Iran, Syria sign agreement, senior Israeli minister warns that Israel will not permit Iran to use Syria as base for attacks.

Arutz Sheva – Israel National News

By David Rosenberg 29/08/18 14:25

Israel blasted a newly-inked agreement between Syria and Iran, deepening the cooperation between the two rogue states in defiance of calls for Tehran to withdraw its forces from the war-torn country.

On Wednesday, Israeli Intelligence Minister Yisrael Katz (Likud), who also serves as Transportation Minister, spoke on Israeli public radio, warning that Israel would not permit Iranian forces to use Syria as a base of operations for military activities.

Just two days earlier, Iran’s Defense Minister, Amir Hatami, signed an agreement with the Assad government, expanding cooperation between Damascus and Tehran. During his visit to Damascus, Hatami rejected calls by the US and Israel that Iran pullout its Quds Force from Syria.

“No third party can affect the presence of Iranian advisers in Syria,” Hatami was quoted as having told reporters in Damascus. According to Arabic media outlets, Iran pledged in the deal to help rebuild the Assad regime’s military and develop Syria’s arms industries.

Katz denounced the Syrian-Iranian agreement, calling it a “test” of Israeli resolve, and vowed to respond “loud and clear”.

“The accord concluded by Bashar al-Assad and Iran constitutes a test for Israel. Our response will be loud and clear.”

“We will not allow Iran to establish itself militarily in Syria,” Katz continued, saying that Israel will “react in Syria with all our might against any Iranian target that threats Israel.”

The Intelligence Minister included a warning for Syria’s military, which he said would be targeted if it interferes with Israeli operations against Iranian forces inside Syria.

“If the Syrian army’s air defense network intervenes against us, it will pay the price.”

Israel and Iran’s Quds Force have clashed repeatedly this year, including a major incident in February following the penetration of Israeli airspace by an armed Iranian drone operating out of a Syrian base.

After the drone was shot down, Israeli aircraft hit the drone’s control center inside Syrian territory, during which time one Israeli F-16I fighter jet was shot down by a Syrian surface-to-air missile.

The Franco-British Boundary Convention

The Franco-British Boundary Convention of December 6, 1920.

The San Remo Resolution (April 24-25, 1920) stipulated that the borders of the Jewish National Home in Palestine should be determined by the Principal Allied Powers.  On December 6, 1920 Britain and France signed a treaty delineating the borders of the territory that would be placed under the Mandates System.

The territory included in the 1920 convention included most of the land that had been under Jewish rule during Biblical times. However, there were some modifications. It was realized that much of the territory north of the Golan Heights was supposed to be part of the Syrian Mandate (see the Adam Smith map of the Kingdoms of David and Solomon). As a result, the Jewish National Home was given extra land in what today is eastern Jordan.

The Convention involved bitter negotiations. The French were opposed to giving up control of the Roman Catholic sites in Palestine. The Turks who ruled in Palestine for the four-hundred years prior to World War I did limited access to the sites. In the end, the British had guaranteed they would protect access of Catholics to their religious sites.

Additionally, the British gave the French administered mandates large amounts of land that were supposed to be included in the Jewish National Home. The land in the Upper Galilee, from what today is the Israel/Lebanon border extending north to the Litani River bend as well as the central Golan Heights was removed from the demarcated borders of Palestine.

…to postpone or withhold application of such provisions of this mandate

According to Article 25 of the Mandate for Palestine, the Mandatory (His Britannic Majesty) had the right to separate the administration of the Mandate in Trans-Jordan from the rest of the Palestine territory. This had to be done with the approval of the League of Nations:

“In the territories lying between the Jordan and the eastern boundary of Palestine as ultimately determined, the Mandatory shall be entitled, with the consent of the Council of the League of Nations, to postpone or withhold application of such provisions of this mandate as he may consider inapplicable to the existing local conditions, and to make such provision for the administration of the territories as he may consider suitable to those conditions, provided that no action shall be taken which is inconsistent with the provisions of Articles 15, 16 and 18.”

The wording, “postpone or withhold application of such provisions of this mandate as he may consider inapplicable to the existing local conditions” is by the nature of the wording a temporary action. That action was only valid until there was a change in the conditions leading to that decision. It did not authorize the British to permanently cut off portions of the land and turn it over to a foreign people.

Furthermore, according to Article 25, the postponement or withholding of the application of the Mandate in Trans-Jordan could not be inconsistent with Article 15 of the Mandate for Palestine which states:

“No discrimination of any kind shall be made between the inhabitants of Palestine on the ground of race, religion or language. No person shall be excluded from Palestine on the sole ground of his religious belief.”

The British “White Papers” policies, which prohibited Jewish settlement East of the Jordan, while allowing a foreign group of Arabs (the Hashemites) to settle and eventually be given all of Trans-Jordan, was in clear violation of Article 15, as well as Article 5 of the Mandate which stated that “no Palestine territory shall be ceded or leased to, or in any way placed under the control of the Government of any foreign Power.

The full text of  Articles 5, 15, and 25:

ARTICLE 5. The Mandatory shall be responsible for seeing that no Palestine territory shall be ceded or leased to, or in any way placed under the control of the Government of any foreign Power.

ARTICLE 15. The Mandatory shall see that complete freedom of conscience and the free exercise of all forms of worship, subject only to the maintenance of public order and morals, are ensured to all. No discrimination of any kind shall be made between the inhabitants of Palestine on the ground of race, religion or language. No person shall be excluded from Palestine on the sole ground of his religious belief.

ARTICLE 25. In the territories lying between the Jordan and the eastern boundary of Palestine as ultimately determined, the Mandatory shall be entitled, with the consent of the Council of the League of Nations, to postpone or withhold application of such provisions of this mandate as he may consider inapplicable to the existing local conditions, and to make such provision for the administration of the territories as he may consider suitable to those conditions, provided that no action shall be taken which is inconsistent with the provisions of Articles 15, 16 and 18.


“… and to make such provision for the administration of the territories… suitable to those conditions….”

The wording, “for the administration of” is by the nature of the wording a temporary provisio. That “provision for the administration of the territories” was only valid until there was a change in the conditions leading to that administration, as mandated by Article 2. It did not authorize the British to permanently cut off portions of the land and turn it over to a foreign people (the Hashemites, Bedouin and Arabs of Palestinian extraction) by granting the Arabs of Palestinian and Meccan extraction independence and sovereignty over Mandate for Palestine territory.

The Arabs (the Hashemites in Particular) were granted political independence with the Mandates for Mesopotamia (Iraq), Lebanon and Syria. Political independence for Jews was through the Mandate for Palestine whose borders were determined by the Franco-British Boundary Convention of 1920.

Until “such political, administrative and economic conditions” exist for the “close Jewish settlement” of Eastern Palestine “as will secure the establishment of the Jewish national home,” the Mandatory was entitled, with the consent of the League of Nations to place such territory under administrative control of the Mandatory but not in violation of Articles 5 and 15.

The British are responsible for establishing the APARTHEID Hashemite [ Jordanian ] Kingdom and the enactment of the Jordanian Citizenship Law which prohibits Jews from settling in Mandatory Eastern Palestine (Eretz Yisrael) in violation of the Mandate for Palestine.

ARTICLE 2. The Mandatory shall be responsible for placing the country under such political, administrative and economic conditions as will secure the establishment of the Jewish national home, as laid down in the preamble, and the development of selfgoverning institutions, and also for safeguarding the civil and religious rights of all the inhabitants of Palestine, irrespective of race and religion.

Airstrike was our first direct attack on Iran

Senior IDF Official:

‘Airstrike was our first direct attack on Iran’

IDF official says Israel now in direct conflict with Iran, no longer fighting just through proxies.


Arutz Sheva – Israel National News

David Rosenberg, 16/04/18 13:27

A senior Israeli military official confirmed that Israel’s air force was responsible for last week’s bombing of the T-4 airbase in Syria last Monday, adding that the conflict between Israel and Iran had entered a new phase of direct confrontation.

Last Monday, combat aircraft bombed Syria’s T-4 airbase, killing 14 people, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights claimed.

Russia and Iran blamed Israel for the attack, claiming that two Israeli Air Force F-15 fighter jets had entered Syrian airspace from Lebanon.

While Israel never officially claimed responsibility, US officials told NBC News that Israel had consulted with the US prior to the attack. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu seemingly alluded to Israel having undertaken the attack in a speech in Sderot, saying “We have one clear and simple rule and we seek to express it constantly: If someone tries to attack you – rise up and attack him.”

According to a senior Israeli security official quoted by The New York Times Sunday night, Israel targeted Iranian forces stationed at the T-4 base, adding that the strike was the first direct attack by Israeli forces on the Iranian regime.

While Israel and Iran have been in conflict since the 1979 Islamic revolution, combat between the two was conducted through proxies, including the Assad-led Baathist regime in Syria, Hezbollah terrorist group in Lebanon, and the Hamas terrorist organization in the Gaza Strip.

Seven Iranian personnel were killed in Israel’s strike on T-4.

“It was the first time we attacked live Iranian targets — both facilities and people,” the source said.

The comments join a statement made by IDF spokesman, Brigadier General Ronen Manelis, who said on Friday that an Iranian drone operated from T-4 which had violated Israeli airspace in February was en route to carry out an attack on Israeli forces, and was not merely on an information-gathering mission.

“This is the first time we saw Iran do something against Israel — not by proxy,” the senior Israeli security official told the Times. “This opened a new period.”

Israel responded to the incursion into its airspace by the Iranian drone with a series of airstrikes by F-16I fighter jets on the T-4 facility. One F-16I was damaged by a Syrian surface-to-air missile, forcing the pilot and navigator to eject. Both were recovered inside Israeli territory.