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Saturday, 26 May 2007

Rockets being fired at Sderot described as a 'trickle of Rockets'

Continuing airstrikes, Israel hits at Hamas

JERUSALEM: The Israeli Army continued its air campaign against the Hamas infrastructure in the Gaza Strip late Thursday and Friday, striking at least eight locations, an army spokesman said.

I couldn't believe some of the statements made in this article, if you would like to see the article and read a few of my thoughts then click read more.

One attack struck a guard post near the home of Ismail Haniya, the Palestinian prime minister and a member of Hamas, in the Shati refugee camp in Gaza City, Palestinian officials said.

'Near the home', what exactly is this? The same refugee camp? Its basically a metal shipping container, probably closer to 100 other buildings, but all of a sudden it becomes 'a guard post near Haniya's home'
The army spokesman, speaking on the condition of anonymity under army rules, said Haniya had "definitely not" been the target of the nighttime attack on Shati. Instead, the army had aimed at, and hit, "a building used by Hamas" in the camp, he said.
"A building used by Hamas" a considerably different meaning to the personal guard post for Haniya.
The guard post, described by local residents as little more than a container or a tin shack, was empty at the time of the attack. Haniya was photographed soon afterward inspecting the damage.
So all of a sudden this essential guard house protecting Haniya, is described as being little more than a tin shack and empty. It doesn't sound like a guard house for Haniya, I think it might be safe to hypothesize there might be more guards protecting Haniya right now rather than less.
So if it was a guard hose why was it empty? Is the reason because it wasn't a guard house, the newspapers and the Palestinians would like to make out it was more than it was?
[In another strike, two Hamas militants were killed and five people were wounded after an Israeli missile hit their car, security officials said, according to The Associated Press in Gaza City. The army confirmed that it had targeted militants of a Hamas rocket production team on their way to attack Israel.]
'and Five people were wounded', whats this? were they moderately wounded? Severally wounded? Pride wounded? Severally traumatized in seeing their blood thirsty murdering terrorist martyrs blown to smithereens? If I was within 5 km and I have a headache does that make me a wounded statistic?
The Israeli military campaign began May 17, soon after Hamas said it would resume its rocket attacks on Israel from Gaza, ending a fragile six-month cease-fire. Smaller Palestinian factions had consistently violated the cease-fire, firing a trickle of rockets throughout. But the number of rocket launchings rose sharply in mid-May, and about 220 rockets have been fired toward Israel since then, according to the Israeli Army.

"soon after Hamas said it would resume its rocket attacks on Israel from Gaza", interesting that the Hamas leadership can promise the stopping of rockets when it suits them, but any other time, its by independent uncontrollable smaller Palestinian factions.

Fragile cease fire? You can't be talking about when Hamas was firing rockets under the guise of being members of other 'uncontrollable' smaller organizations, at Israel almost every day.

But the mother of all quotes has to be "firing a trickle of rockets throughout" If the Journalist who wrote this article would forward their address I'm sure we could organize a trickle of rockets to be fired towards their family, then we shall see if this "so called trickle" stays a trickle. Since when does hundreds of rockets equal a trickle?? I can't believe I just read that tripe in a national news paper.
On Friday afternoon, a rocket hit the yard of a house in the Israeli border town of Sderot, slightly wounding three civilians, army officials said. The Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas, claimed responsibility for that attack and for firing six rockets at Israel on Friday morning.
Note the 'slightly wounding three civilians' report from the IDF, opposed to an alternative reports from Hamas which would sound like: seriously wounding 2 elderly grandmothers, 3 mothers with babies and 7 young children .
Other Israeli airstrikes on Friday targeted buildings that the army said belonged to Hamas. There were strikes in Khan Yunis and Jabaliya. A structure that the army described as an Islamic Jihad weapons-manufacturing facility was hit in the southern town of Rafah. Palestinian officials described it as a metal workshop. In Gaza City, missiles hit a money-changing business that the army said was "involved in transferring funds to terror organizations."

The old "Metal Workshop' , why is it that the Palestinians seem to have more 'metal workshops' per capita base than any other of the world's population. Why is it in such a 'depressed economy' the metal workshop always seems to be doing a flourishing business in the Palestinian territories?
At least 21 Palestinians were wounded Friday, said Dr. Moawiya Hassanain, a spokesman for the Palestinian Ministry of Health. He said 2 of the wounded were members of the Hamas police militia known as the Executive Force, while 19 were civilians, including 3 women and 7 children.
So taking this statement at facing value, and ignoring the fact the their might be an ample supply of injuries already generated by the ongoing Palestinian infighting, we're supposed to believe that in targeting two Hamas militants who were actually good guys ('police') the Israeli armed forces managed to injure 19 other civilians of which 7 were children and three were women. Aspirin any one?
Ahmad Youssef, an adviser of Haniya, said the attack on the guard post was meant to send "a message of threats." He added, "These are all messages and signals that aim to undermine and hamper the movement of the prime minister."
No, we wouldn't be hampering the free movement of Haniya, cause that would be so morally wrong. Its alright to send hundreds of missiles across the border into Israel, but you dare not hamper the free movement of some one who advocates the complete extermination of the state of Israel. That would be just wrong!
Israeli officials have recently suggested that leaders of the political wing of Hamas should not consider themselves immune. On Thursday, the Israeli Army arrested 33 prominent Palestinians associated with Hamas in the West Bank, including a cabinet minister and several legislators and mayors. The army described those arrested as "senior members of the Hamas terror organization."
Well overdue!
The United States voiced mild criticism over the arrests. "The detention of elected members of the Palestinian government and legislature does raise particular concerns for us," said Tom Casey, a State Department spokesman.
Yes Tom Casey your absolutely right, and that's why were going to simply round them all up and have them living next to you firing a 'trickle' of missiles into your back yard.
Israel, the United States and many Western countries define Hamas as a terrorist organization. The United States refuses to deal with the Hamas ministers in the Palestinian unity government.
Terrorists? That's a bit harsh. All these guys want is a fair go at killing civilians. Geez no need to be so down on them. Things used to be so much easier when you threw passengers out plane windows and people in wheel chairs overboard.
The Israeli military has focused its attacks on rocket-launching cells, Hamas military positions and weapons storage facilities. One Israeli woman has been killed and two civilians have been seriously wounded by the recent barrages of rockets fired from Gaza.
How many of Sderots residents have been incapacitated by psychological trauma? Can you imagine sitting your higher school certificate whilst rockets were being fired around you? Whats the cost to the population of Sderot? An entire city is slowly being destroyed by the actions of these terrorists.
Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian president and a member of Fatah, has been trying to persuade the various Palestinian factions, including Hamas, to cease the rocket fire, in the hope of restoring the cease-fire.
Yes lets cease the fire of rockets, reach a cease fire agreement and then we'll let the 'uncontrollable' smaller factions fire rockets at Israel. Ok who wants to be in a smaller uncontrollable faction? Put your hand up? Ok no need to rush here fellows the cease fire talks will give us plenty of time to organize a few uncontrollable elements.
[The factions met at Abbas's offices in Gaza, but Abbas did not attend, The Associated Press reported. Participants said it ended without agreement.]
Can't see why Abbas wouldn't attend? Its not like Hamas was trying to assassinate him or anything?
[Egypt will act as host to talks in the coming days with Palestinian politicians, Palestinian and Egyptian officials said Friday, Reuters reported from the West Bank city of Ramallah. The Palestinian deputy prime minister, Azzam al-Ahmad, a close aide to Abbas, said he and another Fatah leader, Rawhi Fattouh, would travel to Cairo on Saturday to meet Egyptian officials.]
Yes nothing like a little bit of Egyptian input to get things going. How are those negotiations going for the three soldiers, Egypt?
Though Fatah sits in the unity government with Hamas, they remain bitter rivals. About 50 Palestinians were killed in a recent bout of fighting between the two factions.
Bitter rivals? No that's not true they just like practicing killing each other in preparation for the real deal when Israel makes the concessions required to make Israel a totally indefensible state.
At a rally in the Jabaliya refugee camp in northern Gaza on Friday, a Hamas leader, Nizar Rayyan, criticized Abbas for trying to end the rocket fire. "We will not listen to him," Rayyan said of the president, according to Reuters. "Abbas hates rockets just like we hate the Jews."

Nizar Rayyan you're the prefect example of the real intentions of most Palestinians especially Hamas supporters.


International Herald Tribune: Continuing airstrikes, Israel hits at Hamas


Friday, 25 May 2007

JPix 8 is up!

Rafi G from Life in Israel
has just posted JPix 8
make sure you drop in and visit it.

JPix 8 has just been finished by Rafi G at Life In Israel with loads of great photos to go have a look at, so make sure you pop over and take a look.

While on the topic of JPix, Mottel from Letters Of Thought will be hosting the next edition in a fortnight so if you have any photo posts be sure to submit them to be included in JPix.

If you are interested in hosting an edition of JPix you can contact Aaron here.


Thursday, 24 May 2007

Jerusalem: The magic of Shavuot 1967

On the morning of Shavuot, June 15, 1967 just 6 days after Jerusalem was Liberated 200,000 Jews converged into Jerusalem to the visit Kotel.

This article is taken from Aish.com

the last two millennia, Jews have visited Jerusalem in honor of the festivals, in lieu of the biblically-ordained pilgrimages. On the holiday of Shavuot, there was also the custom to visit the purported grave of King David on Mount Zion, since the date of his death was on Shavuot.

When Shavuot arrived in 1948, it was a month after the establishment of the State of Israel, and Jews could no longer continue to make the pilgrimage to the Western Wall. The Jordanians, who occupied the eastern half of the city since the War of Independence, blocked all rights of passage to the Jews.

However, the pilgrimage to King David's tomb on nearby Mount Zion, located on the Israeli side of divided Jerusalem, continued. Over the next 19 years, crowds made their way to Mount Zion, where across barbed wire they could view the Old City and the Temple Mount.

On the morning of Shavuot, June 15, 1967 -- just six days after the liberation of the Old City of Jerusalem in the Six Day War -- the Old City was officially opened to the Israeli public. (The army wanted to be sure there were no landmines or snipers still in the Old City.) For the first time in almost 2,000 years, masses of Jews could visit the Western Wall and walk through the cherished streets of Judaism's capital city as members of the sovereign Jewish nation. Each Jew who ventured to the Western Wall on that unforgettable day was realizing their ancestors' dreams over the millennia. It was one of those rare, euphoric moments in history.

From the late hours of the night, thousands of Jerusalem residents streamed toward the Zion gate, eagerly awaiting entry into the Old City. At 4 a.m., the accumulating crowds were finally allowed to enter the area of the Western Wall. As the sun continued to rise, there was a steady flow of thousands who made their way to the Old City.

The Jerusalem Post described the epic scene:

Every section of the population was represented. Kibbutz members and soldiers rubbing shoulders with Neturei Karta. Mothers came with children in prams, and old men trudged steeply up Mount Zion, supported by youngsters on either side, to see the wall of the Temple before the end of their days.

Some wept, but most faces were wreathed in smiles. For 13 continuous hours, a colorful variety of all peoples trudged along in perfect order, stepping patiently when told to do so at each of six successive barriers set up by the police to regulate the flow.

In total, 200,000 visited the Western Wall that day. It was the first pilgrimage, en masse, of Jews to Jewish-controlled Jerusalem on a Jewish festival in 2,000 years, since the pilgrimages for the festivals in Temple times.

An eyewitness described the moment:

"I've never known so electric an atmosphere before or since. Wherever we stopped, we began to dance. Holding aloft Torah scrolls we swayed and danced and sang at the tops of our voices. So many of the Psalms and songs are about Jerusalem and Zion, and the words reached into us a new life. As the sky lightened, we reached the Zion gate. Still singing and dancing, we poured into the narrow alleyways beyond."

On Shavuot, 3,279 years earlier, the Israelites stood at Mount Sinai and forged a unique relationship with their Creator. On the day of Shavuot following Israel's amazing victory in the Six Day War, multitudes ascended to the Western Wall, and they, too, felt the eternal magic of this moment. After all, "For from Zion shall come forth Torah, and the Word of God from Jerusalem."

This "pedestrian pilgrimage" has now become a recurring tradition. And on this year as well, early on Shavuot morning - after a full night of Torah learning -- the streets of Jerusalem will be filled with tens of thousands of Jews, walking with and anticipation and awe to the Western Wall.

Published Aish.com on 13 May 2007


The Cost of Freedom?

Chaim from Freedoms Cost was interviewed a few nights back in a talk back segment, by Rabbi Yaakov Spivak in New York on 'Talkline' [620 on the am dial]. The discussion was loosely based on Chaim's experiences being in Jerusalem at the Kotel the week of Unification in 1967. [Shavuot 1967]

Chaim makes no apoligies for being Pro Israel, and it would seem he attracted a few apologists who would like to make a lot of apologies. It was a very heated debate, and provides some insight into just how controversial this 'theme' is in some New York house holds. Its an hour show, its about 12.8 mb download but I throughly recommend it.

Reference: Intense Radio


Wednesday, 23 May 2007

Plane loaded with cocaine crashes in Venezuela

A small plane loaded with cocaine crashed in eastern Venezuela, killing the two people aboard and revealing a drug shipment that was seized by troops.

National Guard soldiers confiscated 480 kilograms (1,058 pounds) of cocaine from the Cessna that crashed on Monday night, the attorney general's office said in statement Tuesday.

The wreckage was found near the town of El Tigre, about 400 kilometers (250 miles) southeast of Caracas.

The bodies of the pilot and another person were found in the Venezuelan-registered plane. Authorities did not give details about the suspected causes of the crash, nor details about where the plane departed from or was headed.

In an apparent unrelated story Hugo Chavez the President of Venezuela is rumored to be receiving a delivery of 480 kilograms of baking powder and is convinced he is loved by one and all as he slowly destroys the once flourishing Venezuela. [satire]

JPost: Plane loaded with cocaine crashes in Venezuela


Mr Bagel was up all night

Hag Shavuot Sameach


Gaza Explodes in Violence:
Sderot Suffers
Israel strikes back

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert steps up attempts to pursue the Saudi peace initiative. Anarchy rules the streets of Gaza and the Negev town of Sderot suffered heavy barrages of rockets. Israel responds harshly and strikes Hamas headquarters and Kassam rocket cells in Gaza and in the shadow of all this turmoil Jerusalem marks its 40th anniversary.05/18/07.

If the video fails to play click here:
The week that was : Israel strikes back

Text as per Youtube uploader


BBC Video: Violence escalates in Gaza

If the video fails to play click here:
Violence escalates in Gaza

An Israeli woman has died in a Palestinian rocket attack, hours after fatal Israeli strikes on targets in Gaza.

Text as per Youtube upload
Video Credit: BBC


US Ambassador Richard Jones:
US was merciful to Pollard by
not executing him

Mr Bagel has managed to get the video of Richard Jones stating that the US was merciful to Pollard by not executing him.

There's a lot that has been written of this in the press in the last few days, but there seems to have been one point all the Press has missed.

Some of the Israeli media have conjectured that Richard Jones reactions and statements show a clear bias against Israel and may even verge on being 'anti Semitic'.

Well I'd like to bring your attention to one major point missed by most of the media.

If you watch this video you will see exactly what Richard Jones thinks of Israel.

If the video doesn't play click this link:
US Ambassador: US was merciful to Pollard not executing him

The Ambassador in this video apart for some blatant lies, clearly states:
"I really think that it has to do with the basic fact that this person committed treason against his own country.
I know he was helping a friend, but that's what makes it even more emotional for Americans;
that a friend would cooperate in aiding and abetting someone who is committing treason against his own country"

Its not enough that this slime ball attacks Jonathon pollard, in a way Pollard is unable to come to his own defense, but what is of even more of a gigantic deal of chutzpah is that he has the Gaul to to attack Israel for 'co -operating in aiding and abetting someone who is committing treason'.

Let's put this in historical perspective. Israel had a signed agreement with the Americans to share high level intelligence with each other.

Pollards passing of information clearly showed that America was reneging on this agreement.

Not that that is ever something unusual for America, but it was metering out its intelligence as it saw fit, suiting its own agenda in the Middle East, it wasn't sharing intelligence in a way that a partner would.

If there was any betrayal it was with the American intelligence agencies reticence in sharing what was critically information regarding Nuclear armaments status and strategic readiness for military confrontation.

The Chutzpah of this S.O.B is astounding.

This sad and sorry affair is beyond comprehension. Pollard has served 22 years, he has expressed remorse countless times, this man's life wastes away in Jail because politicians want to play football with his life.


Tuesday, 22 May 2007

The Mystery Blogger Series No #2
9 JBloggers Reveal a Photo of themselves!

Welcome to the 2nd installment of
The Mystery Blogger Series No# 2

This is # 2 in a Weekly Series

Ok You are about to see the photos of another nine Jbloggers some of them Very well known, some not as well known. Now there's a little twist in the series, seems I've mixed up the names of the Bloggers and their Blog site addresses.

Mr Bagel just can't figure what might have happened, can't be too hard thou?


Every Week Mr Bagel has a Caption Contest

Some of my regular readers might not know it, but every week Mr Bagel has a caption contest. Its always at the same web address, which is Bodgey Bagels http://bodgeybagels.blogspot.com/
You can get to it really easily by clicking on the 'Captions' button in the upper most menu.

Entries must be in before Monday

P.S: Its a relatively quick loading page as it only has the Caption Contest.


Monday, 21 May 2007

The Israeli airstrikes have destroyed a 6-month-old truce...
A.P. starts the Spin Again

Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erekat, right,
and Israeli Vice Premier Shimon Peres, left,
took part in the World Economic Forum in South Shuneh, Jordan.

By DALE GAVLAK, Associated Press Writer Sun May 20

SOUTHERN SHUNEH, Jordan - Israeli Vice Premier Shimon Peres said Sunday his government would offer a counterproposal to an Arab peace initiative to resolve the conflict with Palestinians.

He urged Arab leaders to meet with Israel to hash out the issue.

Describe the Arab peace Plan as an Initiative, the Israeli one as a 'counter proposal', some would say thats an example of loaded language.
Arab countries have been trying to re-ignite the stalled peace process with their plan that offers Israel full recognition in exchange for a total withdrawal from lands it captured in the 1967 Middle East war and the creation of a Palestinian state.
Re-ignite the peace process? By lighting and firing hundreds of qassam rockets into Israel?
"The Arab League has proposed, fine. We will make a counterproposal," Peres said during heated discussions that included Moussa and Saeb Erekat, a top aide to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, at the World Economic Forum in Jordan.He did not elaborate on the counteroffer or say when it would be proposed.

Shock, horror, an A.P. journalist isn't included or privy to Israel's peace proposal...

Peres‘ offer coincided with a new outburst of violence in the Gaza Strip over the past week with a combination of Palestinian factional fighting and Israeli airstrikes on the Islamic militant group Hamas that has killed scores of Palestinians. The airstrikes, in reprisal for Hamas rocket attacks on Israel, have destroyed a 6-month-old truce between Israel and the Palestinians.
"...and Israeli airstrikes on the Islamic militant group Hamas that has killed scores of Palestinians",... gee that kind of makes it sound like the scores of killed Palestinians are Israel's fault. It would be more accurate to state the fact that the warring Palestinian factions are responsible for the more deaths than the Israeli airstrikes by a factor of over ten.
But the proposal has remained grounded with the Palestinian infighting in Gaza and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert‘s domestic problems after his handling of a summer war with Hezbollah guerrillas in Lebanon was sharply criticized. "If there is a counteroffer and a reasonable one, then we‘re all in business," he said.
...bit of padding here, to bulk up a rather poorly written puff piece.

"Mr. Peres, our negotiations have finished. ... Today, it‘s time for decisions," Erekat said. "Stop the bombardment of Gaza immediately and restart the truce between us immediately. We are willing to engage now in sustaining the cease-fire."
Stop the bombardment of Gaza? Why is it that when your busy Bombarding Israel cities such as Sderot we never here you say 'stop the bombardment', but as soon as you happen to eventually get return fire, you scream stop the bombardment? Why are you willing to engage now in sustaining the cease-fire?

You've had over six months to stop the continual barrage of rockets being fired apon Israel. The Palestinians have broken the cease fire so many times its beyond a joke. Tell me Erekat, exactly how many of the hundreds upon hundreds or rockets fired apon Israel have you tried to stop? How many Terrorist did you manage to catch? How many rockets have you seized? but now you want the return fire to stop?
"When I see what is going on in the occupied territories, and what is being said by other officials I really find myself at a loss," he said. "Who is speaking for the state of Israel?"
A better question would be, who is acting to stop the continual barrage of rockets from Gaza into Israel? We're supposed to believe you want peace but you can't even enforce a cease fire?!!
In Jerusalem, Foreign Ministry spokesman Mark Regev declined to comment because he had not heard Peres‘ proposal. Even though Israel sees the Arab initiative as "very positive," he predicted it would remain grounded.
More puff to try to infer the Israeli's dont want peace. Its not they dont want peace, they want it on fair and Just terms.
"Israel has no interest in stagnation and unfortunately, if the Arab initiative is take it or leave it, that will be a recipe for stagnation," Regev said.

Your offer is unacceptable, stop acting like the school bully demanding and making unreasonable requests. Show some level of compromise and Israel will reciprocate.
Peres adviser Yoram Dori also would not give details on the counterproposal or a timetable for its submission to the Arab League and Saudi Arabia.
Not suprising considering you're from the AP? I have a funny feeling Israel doesn't see AP as an essential element in peace negotiations.
"Our government, our Cabinet will discuss it, and we will submit our proposal to the Arab League and to the Saudis," he said.
and not to A.P. first... no surprise there.

Yes the Palestinians are very ready and willing to trade pieces as part of the piece process.
Erekat urged Israel to "solve the thorny issues" including the future status of Jerusalem and Israeli settlements in the Palestinian territories. If Israel doesn‘t cooperate, he warned the region would be doomed.
Which put another way is: Agree to the demands of the Arab states, or will will try to destroy your very existance.
"If we leave things to conflicts and wars and settling differences by bombardments and wars we will go into the 21st century in the vehicles of darkness and extremism," he said.
Yes, and unfortunately this describes Hamas in Palestine very well.

DALE GAVLAK: You should be ashamed at the facade you called Journalism.

USA Today: Israel to offer counterproposal to Arab peace initiative, Peres says


JIB Awards Final Results Announced
Check the results Here!

To See the results of the Jewish and Israeli Blog Awards
Click the picture above.

For detailed results in the classes click on these four links:

Some of the stand out winners in Mr Bagel's opinion are the three Music blogs who tied for 1st with three other Music Blogs very close behind. It was good to see these blogs maintained their integrity despite the close competition.


Israel warns Ukraine on anti-Semitism

Israel's ambassador in Kiev said the activities of a Ukrainian university with a history of anti-Semitism could damage Ukrainian-Israeli relations.

Zina Kalai-Kleitman urged Ukraine on Wednesday to curb the anti-Semitic activities of MAUP, a private business-type school that in recent years has become the major source of anti-Semitic and anti-Israeli activity and publications in Ukraine.

"We want only positive dynamics in Israeli-Ukrainian relations, but this unhealthy issue can have a negative influence" on relations, Kalai-Kleitman told a news conference in Kiev.

BB: If your wondering what all the drama is about this 'Bastion of higher learning' lets look at one particular PHD graduate of this obviously prestigious University, Yes its no other than David Puke.

If that's not to turn your stomach, guess who was invited to lecture at MAUP
Yes you guess it David Puke Phd.


Sunday, 20 May 2007

Kosher Cooking Carnival: 18 and all grown Up!

"It's hard to believe that this is the 18th edition of the Kosher Cooking Carnival, the monthly blog carnival dedicated to all aspects of Kosher Food. Next month's carnival will be hosted by the Baleboosteh, and I'm looking for a host for July's edition."

It is a huge edition just before Shavuot, and has recipes for all Kosher taste buds!

The 18th Kosher Cooking Carnival is a feast of assorted recipes!

The Kosher Cooking Carnival comes out monthly and guest-hosts are welcome.

Here's the list of the previous KCC's:
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 ,15 ,16, 17

You can check out what's new and old on Blog Carnival, and you can also add the automatically updated KCC "widget" and/or listing to your own blog.

Yes, another monumental KCC done, Don't forget Baleboosteh is doing the next KCC If you would like a submission in the next month's edition of the Kosher Cooking Carnival, please write to baleboosteh and She will include you in next month's edition.

If you'd like to host the KCC, please let Muse know. And of course, send your Kosher food links and any you find to shilohmuseATyahooDOTcom or via blog carnival, since this carnival is primarily based on submitted contributions, not searches.
Don't forget to remind your readers to visit and try out the recipes. Pass and publicize the link!

Bagelblogger Always Fresh!
Technorati: * * * * * * * * * * * BagelBlogger * Kosher recipes * Shavuot Recipes * Shavuot Cooking * Shavout and Kosher * Shavout and Food


What if? Examining a case scenario, its implications for Israel, the Middle East and World

Some thing happen a few days ago. In the ups and downs of the continual blood lust between Hamas and Fatah, it was buried. It could have and probably still will have major implications on at least a Middle East level.

YNet reported a few days ago:

Abbas cancels Gaza trip over assassination plot

Senior security official says visit cancelled following discovery of tunnel full of explosives placed by gunmen to blow up Palestinian president's convoy

Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas canceled a trip to Gaza on Thursday after it was discovered that Hamas gunmen planned to blow up his convoy, a senior security official said.

"Abu Mazen's (Abbas's) visit to Gaza was canceled after the discovery of a tunnel under Salaheddine Road full of explosives placed by the Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigads to blow up (Abbas's) convoy," said the official.

"The explosives were found on the route that Abu Mazen takes to travel to Gaza," the source added.

An official in Abbas's office confirmed the report.

Dozens of Hamas and Fatah members have been killed in the past few days in heavy clashes. The tensions between the two factions were interrupted by a series of IDF air strikes in response to the firing of Qassam rockets at the cities of Sderot and Ashkelon.

This is a major escalation in the conflict between the waring factions. It can't be ignored that it was a planned assassination attempt against Mahmoud Abbas, utilizing the very dialogue process which is supposed to stop the waring factions from fighting each other.

There's no doubt this is going to have serious implications in any future dialogue between Abbas's Fatah Party and Hamas.

The question is raised how could you trust Hamas to be at the table when they appear to have been scheming the assassination of Abbas. This will be an impediment to any agreement the Palestinians can reach with regards to the current fighting between the waring factions.

There's also another component of this which I have yet to see have any analysis.

Just imagine for one moment that the assassination attempt against Abbas had been successful?

That's a case scenario that would have had implications for both Fatah, Hamas, the Middle East and Israel within minutes of it happening.

Imagine the power vacuum that would exist if Abbas was eliminated. In the short term there would be a severe escalation in inter factional fighting between Hamas and Fatah.

Many questions are raised. Would it be the trigger to a full out civil war in the Palestinian territories? If so who has the most to gain? Fatah? Israel? the US? Iran? Hamas?

There's been some speculation that there may have been an order from Khalid Mashaal.

I would like to speculate, that it could have come from even further. Could it be that this was a strategy of Iran? Iran desperately wants to keep the focus on this area of the Middle East and Iraq. A civil war, with the resultant power shirt to Hamas would serve Iran's purposes extremely well. It would lesson the chances of any foreseeable air strike on Iran in the short to medium future.

It would open up a much needed second front against Iran's number one foe Israel.

I believe Iran and Khalid Mashaal have plotted scenario's of what would happen upon the demise of Abbas, and unfortunately for Western Powers, it would in my eyes result in a major shift of power.

Fatah would be an organization with out a command, ineffective, unable to respond to internal threats. The discord that would result internally for Fatah would present the perfect opportunity to Hamas to once and for all eliminate the threat Fatah poses.

There has been a continual power struggle between Hamas and Fatah ever since Hamas won the Palestinian election.

Western powers are forced into having to prefer the better of two evils. Hamas knows that there is a power shift happening. It knows that it can only for so long hold onto power before the populace starts to resent the lack of foreign aid. Fatah has started to make some serious inroads into the hold of Hamas on power, Haniyeh knows time is starting to run out.

There's no doubt that there would be serious implications for the Palestinian State if Abbas had been/was assassinated. The power vacuum I believe that would result would inevitably erupt in a civil war. The loser would be Fatah, with Israel facing a hardened and more entrenched Hamas, who post civil war, would be a very blood thirsty enemy indeed against Israel.

It doesn't bode well, its an ominous sign in the Palestinian landscape, and what ever happens this will end up being a turning point in Palestinian Politics and a serious escalation in Israel's war against terrorism.

That's my two cents. Mr Bagel.

AFP: Published: 05.17.07, 21:58 / Ynet News