Zio-Watch News Round-up

Dr. Patrick Slattery’s News Roundup, January 24, 2015



From the Jewish Telegraphic Agency

Israeli defense minister: Syria, Lebanon will pay for any Hezbollah attack

(JTA) — Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon warned that Israel would make Lebanon and Syria pay for any Hezbollah action against Israel.

Ya’alon spoke Friday during a visit to the Safed headquarters of the Israel Defense Forces’ Northern Command, the news site nrg.co.il reported.

“Israel will view governments, regimes and organizations on its northern border responsible for goings-on in their territories and will know how to exact a price in any case of attack against Israeli sovereignty, troops or civilians,” Ya’alon said. “We will tolerate no attempts to target us and will know how to react with force.”

Ya’alon’s visit came amid rising tensions along Israel’s northern border following a precision strike on Jan. 18 on a Hezbollah convoy traveling on the Syrian side of the Golan Heights.
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From Ynet News

US: Alliance with Israel ‘national security interest’

White House spokesman explains US policy against meeting with foreign leaders close to elections was behind Obama’s decision not to meet with Netanyahu.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest explained Friday that US policy against meeting with foreign leaders close to Israeli elections was behind President Barack Obama’s decision not to meet with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, stressing that the US alliance with Israel was a “clear national security interest”.

On Thursday, the White House said President Barack Obama would not meet the prime minister when he comes to the US to address a joint session of Congress on Iran. The official White House explanation was that Netanyahu’s visit fell too close to the Israeli election and the Obama administration wanted to avoid the appearance of taking sides.
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From PressTV

The file photo shows a Palestinian woman crying after her house was demolished by Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank.

The United Nations (UN) has called on the Israeli regime to immediately stop the destruction of Palestinian houses in the occupied West Bank.

“In the past three days, 77 Palestinians, over half of them children, have been made homeless,” James W. Rawley, the United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for the occupied Palestinian territory, said on Friday.

The UN official also expressed concern over the spate of demolitions of Palestinian homes by Israeli authorities in the occupied territory, including East Jerusalem al-Quds.

“Some of the demolished structures were provided by the international community to support vulnerable families. Demolitions that result in forced evictions and displacement run counter to Israel’s obligations under international law and create unnecessary suffering and tension,” Rawley stressed.

“They must stop immediately,” he emphazied.
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From Ynet News

EU official: ‘Huge challenge’ to reassure Jews

European Commission Vice-President says that following Paris attacks, ‘majority of Jewish community in member states is not sure that they have a future in Europe’.

The EU faces a “huge challenge” to reassure Jews about their future in Europe after Islamist attacks in Paris, a top official said earlier this week as it discussed fresh counter-terror measures. European Commission First Vice President Frans Timmermans said the 28-nation bloc was determined to respond in keeping with its core values of tolerance and inclusion, promising a new strategy would be ready by May.

“Today we see in some of our member states that a majority of the Jewish community is not sure that they have a future in Europe,” he said. “I think this is a huge challenge to the very foundation of European integration,” he added.
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From the Jewish Daily Forward

Benjamin Netanyahu’s Shocking ‘Invite-Gate’ Gambit — Will Snubbing Barack Obama Pay Off?

News Analysis

By Chemi Shalev (Haaretz)

Published January 23, 2015.

In the musical Funny Girl about Jewish-American entertainer Fanny Brice, Barbra Streisand implored her friend Eddie “Don’t bring a cloud to rain on my parade.” That’s what Benjamin Netanyahu did this week: he rained on President Obama’s parade, marred his victory lap, played party-pooper at the after-party that Obama was holding following his triumphant State of the Union Address. Their irreconcilable differences on Iran’s nuclear program might be overcome, eventually, but such a political and personal slight is neither quickly forgotten nor easily forgiven.

This isn’t the first time that Netanyahu is cast as a killjoy: he volunteered for the job, for example, in September 2013, after Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s debutante ball at the United Nations in New York. The White House blew a gasket over that as well but at least Netanyahu had a reasonable Iranian alibi. On Wednesday, when House Speaker John Boehner pulled out a Netanyahu Congressional speech as a calculated counterattack to Obama’s gloating address, no excuses could help. Washington, literally, was shocked.

According to numerous reports, Obama’s aides at the White House couldn’t contain the foam on their mouths: “chickenshit”, according to one, was the mildest epithet used that day. The reaction was quickly forthcoming: President Obama won’t meet with Netanyahu when he is in Washington, and Netanyahu’s old friend John Kerry will stay away as well. It’s because of the elections, spokesperson Bernadette Meehan explained, with a wink big enough for the entire world to see.
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