12:18 PM, Jun 26, 2015 • By RAFAEL MEDOFF
The State Department's practice of downplaying Palestinian incitement has reached a new low, with its latest report whitewashing not only the Palestinians' behavior but also Secretary of State John Kerry's own words on the subject.
Kerry is not known as a critic of Palestinian misbehavior; the Obama administration has cultivated relations with the Palestinian Authority by turning a blind eye to the PA's objectionable words and deeds. But after the wave of incitement that preceded last November's massacre of three American rabbis and an Israeli policeman in a Jerusalem synagogue, even the normally reticent secretary of state could no longer hold his tongue.
“To have this kind of act, which is a pure result of incitement, of calls for ‘days of rage’, of just irresponsibility, is unacceptable,” Kerry told reporters on November 18, shortly after the murders. “The Palestinian leadership must condemn this and they must begin to take serious steps to restrain any kind of incitement.”
Yet for some reason, Kerry's unprecedented statement on the Palestinian incitement-and-terror wave is nowhere to be found in the just-released State Department report on human rights for 2014. The section on the Palestinian Authority is nearly 26,000 words long--yet devotes just 38 words to the disturbing events of October and November. The report goes out of its way to absolve the Palestinian Authority. There was unspecified "media commentary" by unnamed Palestinians "longing for a world without Israel and glorifying terror attacks on Israelis," the report states. "Following a string of vehicle assaults by Palestinians on Israelis in Jerusalem, the Palestinian press and social media widely circulated cartoons encouraging such attacks."
Why didn't the State Department name those inciters in the "Palestinian press and social media?” Perhaps because they started at the top. It was Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas himself who launched the incitement to which Kerry referred, with an October 17 speech accusing Israelis of planning to "defile" the Al-Aqsa Mosque, Jerusalem's most prominent Muslim religious site. He urged the Palestinian public to respond to the imaginary threat by "standing before them with chests bared" in order to "prevent them, in any way whatsoever, from entering the Sanctuary."
Abbas's incendiary rant was broadcast on Palestine TV, the station run by the PA's Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation. The new State Department report calls it "the PA-supported Palestine TV," misleadingly implying that the station is merely supported, rather than controlled, by the PA. The previous year's report likewise tried to downplay the PA's control of the station, calling it "Palestine TV, the self-governing official PA television station." Is it self-governing, or is it official? Perhaps somebody in Foggy Bottom can explain.
Five days after Abbas's speech, a Palestinian terrorist rammed his automobile into a crowd of Israelis standing at a Jerusalem train station. A three month-old American-Israeli infant, and a 22 year old woman, were killed; seven others were injured. In the days to follow, official PA media were filled with calls for violence. The PA's news agency, WAFA, broadcast Fatah's call for a "day of rage" on October 31 to combat "desecration of Al-Aqsa." Mass Palestinian rioting followed. PA television encouraged the violence by broadcasting Abbas's "defiling" speech no fewer than nineteen times over the next three days. Fatah's Facebook page featured an image of a screaming Yasser Arafat, with the caption "The Jews are defiling Al Aqsa--will you not rage??"
On November 5, another automobile attack was carried out at a Jerusalem train station, this time killing an Israeli police captain and a teenage yeshiva student, and leaving 14 others wounded. The car attacks were followed by a daily torrent of Palestinian calls for violence against Israelis. What was remarkable about the incitement was that it was undertaken not by fringe elements but on official PA television, in the PA's official daily newspaper, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, and on the Facebook pages of the PA's Security Forces and Fatah, the majority party in the PA regime. PA chairman Abbas is also chairman of Fatah.
A video on the security forces' Facebook page on November 6 defended the car-ramming attacks, while one on the Fatah page that same day praised terrorists who stabbed a "Zionist security guard" as "heroes." Fatah also posted a cartoon supporting car-terrorism, and a photo of an Arab with a rifle and the caption, "Restore your glory."
7:00 AM, Mar 16, 2015 • By DANIEL DORON
Elections have grown increasingly contentious in countries across the globe. This makes sense; governments have become immensely powerful in the face of growing challenges, governments control a much greater share of the economy, and the benefits of dispensing government largesse are increasing exponentially. More recently, thanks to the “innovations” of James Carville and his ilk, campaigns have become ever more bitter and negative.
4:04 PM, Oct 2, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
A new report from the Jewish Telegraph Agency details that the Argentine congress will be fundraising for the terror group Hamas.
"A fundraising campaign for Palestine by the Argentine National Congress is being seen by one Jewish group as an endorsement of Hamas," reports JTA.
Who won the Gaza war? Sep 8, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 48 • By ELLIOTT ABRAMS
For the moment, the Gaza war of 2014 is over. Anyone trying now to figure out who won and who lost should recall the 2006 war between Israel and Hezbollah. Then, Israelis had a great sense of letdown because they had not “won.” They had not destroyed Hezbollah, and the organization loudly claimed a triumph: “Lebanon has been victorious, Palestine has been victorious, Arab nations have been victorious,” said Sheikh Nasrallah. An estimated 800,000 Hezbollah supporters gathered in Beirut for a rally celebrating the “divine victory.”
10:28 AM, Aug 22, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
What, you sometimes think, is it with these people? Why are they so infatuated with death? First, the execution of James Foley by ISIS, carried off like a punk schoolyard stunt. And now, as the Chicago Tribune reports:
Sep 1, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 47 • By LEE SMITH
During the six weeks of Israel’s Operation Protective Edge, Hamas has used human shields—women and children—to protect its infrastructure in Gaza. This tactic is meant either to deter Israel from striking at the rockets, attack tunnels, and terrorists that threaten it, or—and for Hamas this is much preferable—to force the Israeli military to fire on Palestinian civilians.
3:11 PM, Aug 7, 2014 • By MICHAEL WARREN
While a ceasefire between Hamas and Israeli military forces continues, a Thursday rally in Gaza City organized by the terrorist group featured plenty of young children, some of whom were carrying toy guns. Associated Press photographer Lefteris Pitarakis captured the scene:
AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis
AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis
4:02 PM, Aug 6, 2014 • By LEE SMITH
Now into its second day, the 72-hour humanitarian ceasefire between Israel and Palestinian factions continues to hold. With Hamas’ missile arsenal depleted by roughly 50 percent and, according to Israeli assessments, 32 attack tunnels destroyed, Israeli officials are claiming a clear victory. “The IDF won big time in Gaza,” says one commander of an elite unit. “Stop staying we lost. We won.”
Hosted by Michael Graham.5:35 PM, Aug 5, 2014 • By TWS PODCAST
The WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with senior editor Lee Smith on the ceasefire agreed to in Gaza by Hamas and Israel.
4:29 PM, Aug 5, 2014 • By STEPHEN SCHWARTZ
Abulghasem Salavati, who heads Branch 15 of the Revolutionary Court in Tehran, is known as one of Iran’s “hanging judges.” As the London Guardian reported recently, Salavati and his colleague, Mohammad Moghiseh, are most prominent judges in a drive to suppress independent journalists and political dissenters. The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), a professional organization based in Brussels, denounced Iran on July 29 for keeping 27 journalists locked up.
9:02 AM, Aug 5, 2014 • By JERYL BIER
Nobel Peace Prize recipient Jimmy Carter takes to ForeignPolicy.com to argue that the key to ending the current war in Gaza is "recognizing Hamas as a legitimate political actor." Writing along with f
4:04 PM, Aug 4, 2014 • By MICHAEL WARREN
On CNN's Reliable Sources Sunday, frequent WEEKLY STANDARD contributor Elliott Abrams debated Palestinian journalist Rula Jebreal over the issue of how the war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza has been covered by the media. Watch the clip below:
4:40 PM, Aug 1, 2014 • By LEE SMITH
Ninety minutes into the 72-hour unconditional ceasefire announced this morning, Hamas launched a suicide attack in which two IDF soldiers were killed and another was kidnapped. Word on the ground in Israel is that Palestinian Islamic Jihad, rather than Hamas, may be responsible for the operation. If those rumors prove accurate, some analysts speculate, it would mean that Iran, PIJ’s longtime patron, is behind the operation and is responsible for scuttling the ceasefire.
9:51 AM, Aug 1, 2014 • By MICHAEL WARREN
A ceasefire between Israel and Hamas ended after it had barely begun Friday morning when the terrorist organization committed a suicide attack that killed two Israeli soldiers and kidnapped a third. In a fact sheet sent to journalists, Omri Ceren of the Israel Project explains where the broken ceasefire leaves Israel and the region: