Zio-Watch News Round-up

US and UK have spied on Israeli army for 18 years: Zio-Watch, January 29, 2016


Dr. Patrick Slattery’s News Roundup
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From the Jewish Telegraphic Agency

US and UK have spied on Israeli army for 18 years

(JTA) — U.S. and British intelligence services have reportedly spied on Israel for 18 years after cracking its army’s encryption for communication between fighter jets, drones and army bases.

The information was reported Friday by The Intercept and the German newspaper Der Spiegel based on documents that came into the possession of Edward Snowden, the whistleblower who worked for U.S. intelligence before publishing classified material and fleeing to Russia.

Britain and the United States have reportedly used this access to monitor Israel Defense Forces operations in the Gaza Strip, watch for a potential strike on Iran and keep tabs on the drone technology that Israel exports.
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From the Jewish Telegraphic Agency

Spain ‘deeply worried’ over Palestinian deaths from Israel’s use of force

(JTA) — Spain’s government expressed “deep concern at the loss of many dozens of lives” of Palestinians as a result of Israel’s “use of force” in response to attacks against its citizens.

The statement Tuesday by the Spanish foreign ministry also said that Palestinian murders of Jewish settlers in the West Bank and Palestinian attacks on other Israelis are “terrorist attacks” and “hate crimes.”

However, pro-Israel activists lambasted the ministry for the statement, which the ACOM lobby group condemned Thursday as “infamous” and creating a false moral equivalence between aggressor and victim.

The Spanish ministry’s statement was in reaction to the killing of Dafna Meir, a Jewish mother of six, on Jan. 17 at her home in the West Bank settlement of Otniel, and two other attacks that occurred thereafter in settlements, the statement said.
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From the Jewish Telegraphic Agency

Amid tensions with Turkey, Israel announces alliance with Greece, Cyprus

(JTA) — The leaders of Israel, Cyprus and Greece entered a trilateral partnership that they said was not meant to exclude other parties — in a possible reference to Turkey.

The announcement about the trilateral agreement came on Thursday, during Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s visit to the island of Cyprus, whose northern half is under Turkish occupation.

The three leaders — Netanyahu, his Greek counterpart Alexis Tsipras and Cyprus President Nikos Anastasiades — “agreed to strengthen the cooperation between [the] three countries in order to promote a trilateral partnership in different fields of common interest and to work together towards promoting peace, stability, security and prosperity in the Mediterranean and the wider region,” they wrote in a joint statement.

The partnership comes amid sustained tensions among Greece, Cyprus and Turkey over the occupation, and a crisis in relations between Turkey and Israel over various issues, including Israel’s blockade on the Gaza Strip and Turkey’s hosting of Hamas officials.
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From the Jewish Telegraphic Agency

In GOP debate, Rubio reiterates pledge to revoke Iran nuclear deal

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., reiterated his pledge to revoke the nuclear deal struck last year with Iran and defended his proposal to shut down mosques where radical speech is reported.

“When I am president of the United States, if there is some place in this country where radical jihadists are planning to attack the United States, we will go after them wherever they are,” Rubio said Thursday night in Des Moines, Iowa, in the last Republican debate prior to the Iowa caucuses on Monday.

The debate was largely overshadowed by frontrunner Donald Trump’s decision to sit out the exchange because of a feud with Fox News Channel, the network that broadcast the debate. Trump held a rally at a nearby venue during the debate.
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From The Independent

Zika in Europe: Cases of Mosquito-borne virus spreading after illness reported in Germany

The World Health Organisation says there have been two German cases of the virus
  • Alexandra Sims
  • Workers disinfect the Sambadrome in Rio de Janeiro to fight the spread of the Zika virus Authorities said on Wednesday a patient in Denmark is not the first Zika case in Europe.

Cases of the mosquito-transmitted Zika virus have been reported in Germany following confirmation a Danish tourist has also tested positive for the illness.

Authorities said on Wednesday the patient in Denmark is not the first Zika case in Europe, with confirmed cases in both Germany and Britain, according to Romit Jan from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control in Stockholm.

According to n-tv, “multiple German travel returnees” have been diagnosed with the virus, however the World Health Organisation says there have been two German cases of the virus in tourists returning to the country in December.

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From the Jewish Telegraphic Agency

UN envoy Blair: Solving Palestinian issue key to Arab-Israeli alliance on ISIS

(JTA) — Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair said that progress on the Palestinian issue is key to forging an alliance between Israel and Arab states to address rising common threats.

Blair, who served as prime minister in 1997-2007 and as international envoy to the peace process between Israel and the Palestinians, said this on Tuesday during a speech in Brussels at an event organized by the European Jewish Congress to celebrate its 30th anniversary.

“If you go to the capitals of the Middle East region, you will find the same analyses of the threat, and the same desire to overcome them,” said Blair, who currently works for the of the office of the Quartet Representative – a platform set up by the United States, the European Union, Russia and the United Nations for the peace process between Israel and the Palestinians. The reality he described, Blair said, forms the basis for his work to realize “the potential for alliance between the State of Israel and its Arab neighbors.”

But, Blair added, “the key of course to that alliance, as we know, is progress on the Palestinian issue, and we know that this is difficult.” But out of crises such as the growth of the Islamic State terrorist group in Syria and Iraq, Blair added, “come opportunities that during this long process of transition in the Middle East there is the genuine possibility of changing the way that people think and of reaching a situation where Israel is accepted and recognized.”
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From the Jewish Telegraphic Agency

World medical body rejects claims Israelis should be expelled

(JTA) — The World Medical Association will not expel Israeli physicians over pro-Palestinian activists’ allegations that they practice torture, the president of the world body said.

Michael Marmot, the London-born physician who heads the association, announced the group’s decision in a letter he sent Monday to Shimon Samuels, the international relations director of the Simon Wiesenthal Center. Samuels had urged Marmot to reject the call by 71 British physicians earlier this month to expel Israel from the world body over alleged medical torture of Palestinians.

“The main authors of the letter have launched several attacks against the Israeli Medical Association with similar arguments in the past,” Marmot wrote, but “investigations have revealed no wrongdoing.” He added: “We have trust that our Israeli colleagues will stand firm on our values and the protection of human rights.”

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