- Lycée musulman Averroès : "nid de vipères" contre "théorie du complot", Baptiste Becquart (AFP) - "Pendant l'audience, [Soufiane Zitouni] dénonce un "mélange de religion et de politique" au lycée : "un professeur de mathématiques qui est imam à l'occasion et clairement pro-Hamas", assure M. Zitouni. "Comment peut-on confier des élèves à des professeurs proches d'une organisation terroriste", s'indigne-t-il".
"Le lycée lillois musulman Averroès, est-il un "nid de vipères hypocrites" au service du salafisme comme le prétend un enseignant démissionnaire ou ce professeur développe-t-il une "théorie du complot paranoïaque" et sans fondement ? Les deux thèses se sont vivement opposées vendredi lors du procès en diffamation non publique au tribunal de police de Lille. L'établissement, sous contrat avec l'Etat et classé en 2013 par certains médias comme le meilleur lycée de France, a attaqué Soufiane Zitouni pour un mail à des collègues, accusant les responsables de l'établissement de diffuser une conception de l'islam proche du salafisme. L'affaire a été médiatisée par la publication d'un texte similaire dans Libération, le 6 février.
"Elèves pris par une idéologie", "prof de maths pro-Hamas", "obligation religieuse" du port du voile professée par l'imam : le professeur de philosophie égrène une nouvelle fois les reproches qui l'ont conduit à démissionner du lycée, où il était arrivé en septembre. Il est venu au tribunal seul, armé uniquement de son éloquence et d'une élégance ostensible - chaussures et pantalon rouges, veste en velours marron. "Je m'inspire de Socrate, qui s'est défendu sans avocat", dit-il à la presse.
Pendant l'audience, il dénonce un "mélange de religion et de politique" au lycée : "un professeur de mathématiques qui est imam à l'occasion et clairement pro-Hamas", assure M. Zitouni. "Comment peut-on confier des élèves à des professeurs proches d'une organisation terroriste", s'indigne-t-il.
Face à lui, l'avocat de l'association gérant le lycée, Me Hakim Chergui, tout aussi prolixe, taxe ces accusations de "théorie du complot paranoïaque". Il vilipende avec ironie la démarche de "produire une magnifique tribune dans Libération", "pour se faire passer pour pseudo-lanceur d'alerte, qui a découvert des choses horribles, choses qu'il a été le seul à voir et qui n'ont jamais été reprises dans un rapport d'inspection". A la suite de l'affaire, le rectorat a organisé une inspection et rédigé un rapport dans lequel il estimait que le lycée respectait "globalement" les termes de son contrat avec l'Etat.
"Quand vous soutenez, au mépris de votre propre vocation d'enseignant, que les élèves tiennent des propos antisémites, vous êtes clairement dans l'abus de la liberté d'expression", assène-t-il en s'adressant à M. Zitouni, qui pour lui n'a jamais apporté la preuve de ce qu'il reproche. "Cette violence symbolique a créé des blessures auprès des familles et des taches sur le cursus des étudiants", insiste l'avocat. "Demain quand un élève ira chercher un travail, l'employeur se rappellera les accusations graves, injurieuses, et insultantes". [...]
L'une des réserves du rapport de février du rectorat de Lille concernait une confusion entre l'enseignement d'éthique musulmane et la philosophie, reconnaît lui-même Me Chergui - mais ce reproche est purement "pédagogique", selon lui. [...]"
- "Euh, il y a des noirs en Israël ?", Sarah Diffalah (Nouvel Observateur) - "De Paris à Grenoble, en passant par Sarcelles et Saint-Denis, une équipe de foot israélienne, composée de jeunes arabes musulmans et de juifs d'origine éthiopienne, est allée pendant une semaine à la rencontre de clubs des quartiers populaires français".
"“Les blacks, ce sont les Palestiniens”, croit savoir une jeune fille, venue encourager le club de son quartier grenoblois, le FC Mistral. Raté. L'équipe adverse, le FC Abou Gosh, venue des faubourgs défavorisés de Jérusalem, n'est pas composée de Palestiniens mais d'arabes israéliens musulmans et de Falashas, des juifs d'origine éthiopienne … Donc blacks. Elle écarquille les yeux, déconcertée. “Euh… Il y a des noirs en Israël ?” Son amie hausse les épaules : “Bah, il y a du soleil, donc il y a des noirs… En Algérie aussi, il y a des noirs…”
Sur la pelouse du stade Vaucanson, dans cette cité sensible du sud-ouest de Grenoble, les joueurs des deux équipes se sont mis sur leur trente-et-un. Des deux côtés, la coupe de cheveux “undercut” qui a envahi les stades brésiliens lors du dernier Mondial, et les crêtes d'Iroquois façon Neymar sont de rigueur. Dans l'assistance, on croise le maire écologiste Eric Piolle, arrivé à vélo pour donner le coup d'envoi de la rencontre. [...]" (suite payante)
- Palestinians abandon bid to have Israel banned from FIFA (Times of Israel)
"The Palestinian delegation to FIFA on Friday dropped a motion to have the Israeli soccer federation suspended from international football amid pressure from dozens of national delegates. Palestinian soccer chief Jibril Rajoub submitted a last-minute amendment to the proposal, eliminating the demand for ban, and told the Congress that “a lot of colleagues” had asked him not to call for Israel’s suspension. [...]
Instead, Rajoub called on international delegates to vote on setting up a monitoring mechanism to oversee three points: the movement of Palestinian soccer players and soccer equipment donated to the Palestinians, monitoring racism and discrimination against Palestinian soccer players, and the issue of Israeli teams from settlements in the West Bank, which he referred to as “five racist clubs which should be banned.” Theatrically, Rajoub pulled out a referee’s red card at the podium, saying he was showing the card in a protest against “racism, humiliation and demonstration in Palestine and everywhere.”
Israel’s delegate Ofer Eini requested to speak immediately afterwards, and FIFA President Sepp Blatter gave him the podium. Israeli Football Association head Eini said he was “delighted” that the Palestinians had dropped the motion and called on Rajoub to “leave politics to politicians.” “I appeal to Jibril Rajoub… I want us to work together, I want us to cooperate, I want us to hug and embrace each other,” Eini said, addressing the congress in Hebrew.
“There is one thing on which I disagree with you,” he said. “We must not involve politics and football.” He said the five teams Rajoub sought to ban were kids’ sports teams. “There are always differences of opinion… but if we can speak, we can always resolve our differences, he said. We have proposed a joint committee (Israel, the Palestinians and FIFA)… and I hope we will be able to resolve all problems as they arise.” [...]"
- FIFA still voted to call Israel "racist" (Elder of Ziyon)
"The compromise proposal that the PA proposed to the FIFA is not as much of a victory as Israel is pretending. 90% of FIFA members voted for this:
"In order to end the suffering and discrimination of our Palestinian football family at the hands of the illegal and racist occupation of our land, we have presented a proposal for a final solution. [A committee to investigate]
(1) The restrictions of Palestinian rights for the freedom of movement. (2) The continued racism and discriminatory behavior of IFA officials and clubs in direct violation of not only the principles of FIFA, (including FIFA’s no-tolerance policy against racism and discrimination) (3) the grave concern over at least five Israeli clubs located in illegal settlements in the occupied State of Palestine."
Saying that they will investigate Israel's "racism" means that they are saying Israel is a priori racist."
- Israel gets a yellow card from FIFA (Haaretz) - "Once again Israel was pulled into a redundant public struggle with the Palestinians which only did damage to its international standing".
- PM: Anti-Israel push at FIFA shows Palestinians oppose our right to exist (Times of Israel)
"Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Friday slammed a Palestinian motion to expel Israel from FIFA, soccer’s governing body, asserting that the move, up for vote in Zurich later in the day, constituted opposition to Israel’s right to exist.
“These days and at these hours right now, together with [Israel Football Association President] Ofer Eini and members of the football association, we are taking part in a persistent and just battle against the Palestinian attempt to undermine the legitimacy of Israel and Israeli soccer,” Netanyahu wrote on his official Facebook page. “The Palestinian move to boycott Israel in the soccer arena and the international arena in general is not due to something we do or do not do. It stems from an opposition to our right to our own state.”
Netanyahu acknowledged that “Israel is not a perfect state. There is no such thing. But it is a state of values that protects human rights,” he said, in a region where such rights are widely violated. “No people wants peace and cooperation more than we do,” he said. “No democracy faces more challenges than Israel, and none does more to protect the values of morality, pluralism and humanity.” [...]"
- Israel's next battle will be over Olympics, diplomats say (Ynet) - "After Palestinians withdraw proposal to ban Israel from FIFA, Foreign Ministry and sports officials warn Israel's deterrence is eroding, saying attempts to de-legitimize Israel will continue in other fields".
- PA sports: Prohibiting peace building and glorifying terror (PMW)
"This week, the Palestinian Authority is asking FIFA to suspend Israel's participation in FIFA sports activities. It is ironic that the PA is making such an aggressive request, when in fact it is the PA and Fatah who routinely disrespect the basic values of international sportsmanship, and the spirit upon which Olympic sports are founded.
The Palestinian Authority's abuse of sports is a concrete example of how the PA chooses to further entrench the conflict rather than work to resolve it. The Palestinian Authority uses sports to send the message that murdering Israeli civilians is honorable and heroic, that all of Israel is "Palestine," and that peace building or "normalization" with Israel is prohibited and even criminal.
Jibril Rajoub, Head of the PA Olympic Committee, has organized and is promoting the request to FIFA. He is also one of the driving forces behind this abuse of sports and continues to promote terror himself. Even the terrorists responsible for the massacre of 11 Israeli athletes in the Munich Olympics in 1972 continue to be glorified by the PA and Fatah.
PMW documentation clearly shows the irony of the PA's request. If any sports association should be suspended from FIFA for fundamental violations of the spirit of sports, it is the Palestinian Authority. [...]"
- Report: PA soccer chief 'promotes terror' through sports (Ynet) - "Palestinian Media Watch says Jibril Rajoub, the former Fatah security chief behind a call for FIFA to boycott Israel, has initiated a table tennis tournament named after a terrorist who killed 38 people in bloody 1978 attack".
Gaza & Hamas
- Egypt's Blockade of Gaza, Khaled Abu Toameh (Gatestone Institute) - "Egypt's keeping the Rafah border crossing shut only aggravates the humanitarian and economic crisis in the Gaza Strip. The irony is that the frustration and bitterness eventually translate into violence against Israel, and not Egypt. The Palestinians are well aware that attacking Egypt would draw a very strong response from the Egyptian army".
"Yussra al-Najjar, a 65-year-old woman from the Gaza Strip, died this week while waiting to return from Egypt to the Gaza Strip. She and hundreds of Palestinians had been stranded on the Egyptian side of the Rafah border crossing for the past few months. Al-Najjar is the tenth Palestinian to die while waiting for the Egyptians to reopen the Rafah terminal. Her relatives said she lost consciousness while waiting inside the travelers' hall on the Egyptian side of the border and was rushed to an Egyptian hospital, where she was pronounced dead.
The story of the Palestinian woman who passed away after being banned from by the Egyptian authorities from returning home to the Gaza Strip is unlikely to make it to the pages of major Western newspapers. Her story would have won extensive media coverage had she been stranded on the Israeli side of the border for even one day. But in this instance, al-Najjar was the victim of a months-long blockade imposed on the Gaza Strip by an Arab country, Egypt, and not Israel.
The Egyptians claim that they actually saved her life by quickly transferring her to an Egyptian hospital for first aid. They said that afterwards she was moved to a hospital inside the Gaza Strip. This claim, however, did not stop some Palestinian media outlets from reporting that the "Egyptians killed an elderly Palestinian woman."
Since the beginning of this year, the Egyptians have opened the Rafah border crossing for five days only. This week, in a surprise move, the Egyptians reopened the Rafah terminal for three days, to allow Palestinians stranded on the Egyptian side of the border to return to their homes inside the Gaza Strip. Still, Palestinians were not permitted to use the terminal to leave the Gaza Strip. These include students who are studying in various universities around the world and laborers working mostly in Arab countries.
The international media and community often talk about Israel's responsibility for the ongoing blockade of the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip, while ignoring that the Egyptians have been imposing severe travel restrictions on the 1.7 million Palestinians living there.
The tough Egyptian measures include the closure of the Rafah border crossing between the Gaza Strip and Egypt -- a policy that has left thousands of Palestinian travellers stranded on the Egyptian side of the terminal for the past three months. Meanwhile, thousands of Palestinians have been unable to leave the Gaza Strip for several months due to the continued closure of the Rafah border crossing by the Egyptian authorities. In addition to the students and laborers, there are more than 3,500 Palestinian patients in the Gaza Strip who have been waiting for many months to cross the terminal to receive medical treatment in Egypt and other Arab countries.
Egypt's continued closure of the Rafah terminal has failed to attract the attention of many Western journalists covering the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Some of the journalists say they are unable to report about the plight of the Palestinian travellers stranded on the Egyptian side of the border because the Egyptian authorities will not allow them to reach the area. Other journalists find it easier to cover the story from the Israeli side, which allows them to put the onus of the blockade on Israel.
Palestinian human rights activist Salah Abdel Ati said that Egypt's continued closure of the Rafah border crossing was a form of collective punishment against the Palestinians of the Gaza Strip. "The Rafah terminal is the only opening of the Gaza Strip to the outside world," he explained. "Its continued closure is a violation of human rights and causes grave suffering to thousands of people. We understand Egypt's security concerns in Sinai, but it's time for the Egyptians to reopen the border crossing on a permanent basis, especially in light of the historic relations between Egypt and Palestine."
While Egypt's security concerns may be justified, particularly in light of the war that the Egyptian authorities are waging against jihadi terrorists in Sinai, there is no reason why the Egyptians continue to prevent Palestinians from returning to their homes in the Gaza Strip. There is also no reason why the Egyptians are continuing to punish thousands of university students, laborers and patients in need of urgent medical treatment.
It is shameful for the Egyptians and other Arabs that, while they are imposing various forms of restrictions on Palestinians, Israel is helping patients from the Gaza Strip undergo surgery in Jerusalem. The Egyptians are capable of checking every passenger entering or leaving the Gaza Strip the same way Israel does on its border with the Gaza Strip.
Egypt's keeping the Rafah border crossing shut only aggravates the humanitarian and economic crisis in the Gaza Strip. The irony is that the frustration and bitterness eventually translate into violence against Israel, and not Egypt. The Palestinians are well aware that attacking Egypt would draw a very strong response from the Egyptian army. Instead of pointing the finger of blame at Israel, it is time for the international media and community to put pressure on Egypt and other Arab countries to help their Palestinian brethren and to stop torturing and humiliating them."
- Amnesty’s Reports on Hamas Refute Its Allegations Against Israel, Evelyn Gordon (Commentary) - "in its reports on Hamas, Amnesty has effectively demolished its two main allegations against Israel".
"Over the past two months, Amnesty International has quietly confirmed nearly all of Israel’s main claims about Hamas’s conduct during last summer’s war in Gaza. Yet the organization still lacks the intellectual honesty to admit that its findings about Hamas completely undercut its main allegations against Israel – made vociferously both at the time and in a series of reports last fall and winter.
Amnesty turned its attention to Hamas only after months of reporting on alleged Israeli crimes. First came a March report on Hamas’s rocket fire, then one this week on its extrajudicial killings of alleged collaborators. Each undercuts a key claim against Israel.
The most interesting finding in the March report was that Hamas’s rockets killed more civilians in Gaza than they did in Israel. Altogether, Amnesty said, the rockets killed six Israeli civilians and “at least” 13 Palestinian civilians. Where did the latter figure come from? From a single misfired rocket that killed 13 civilians in the Al-Shati refugee camp. In other words, Amnesty didn’t bother checking to see whether other Hamas rockets also killed civilians; it simply cited the one case it couldn’t possibly ignore, because it was reported in real time by a foreign journalist at the scene.
But according to Israel Defense Forces figures, roughly 550 rockets and mortars fired at Israel fell short and landed in Gaza, including 119 that hit urban areas. And it defies belief to think those other 549 rockets and mortars produced no casualties.
After all, unlike Israel, Gaza has no civil defense system whatsoever. A 2014 study found that Israel’s civil defense measures reduced casualties from the rocket fire on sparsely populated southern Israel by a whopping 86%. But Gaza has no Iron Dome to intercept missiles, no warning sirens to alert civilians to incoming rockets, and no bomb shelters for civilians to run to even if they were warned. Thus in densely populated Gaza, with no civil defense measures, those misfired rockets would almost certainly have killed at least dozens, and quite possibly hundreds, of civilians.
One of the main claims against Israel made by Amnesty and other human rights groups is that it caused excessive civilian casualties. Most such groups simply parrot the UN claim (which came straight from Gaza’s Hamas-run Health Ministry) that 67% of the 2,200 casualties were civilians; Israel has consistently said the civilian-to-combatant kill ratio was roughly 1:1. While there are many reasons to think the Israeli figure is closer to the truth, even the UN/Palestinian ratio of 2:1 would be drastically lower than the international norm of 3:1.
But once you acknowledge that some portion of those civilian casualties was actually caused by misfired Hamas rockets rather than Israeli strikes, then the claim of excessive civilian casualties becomes even more untenable. Indeed, it means the civilian-to-combatant fatality ratio from Israeli strikes was likely even below 1:1.
Then there’s Amnesty’s report this week on Hamas’s extrajudicial executions. Its most interesting finding, as Elhanan Miller reported in the Times of Israel, is that “Hamas used abandoned sections of Gaza’s main hospital, Shifa, ‘to detain, interrogate, torture and otherwise ill-treat suspects, even as other parts of the hospital continued to function as a medical center.’”
That goes to the heart of the other main allegation against Israel made by Amnesty and its fellows: that Israel repeatedly targeted civilian buildings rather sticking to military targets. Israel countered that these “civilian” buildings doubled as military facilities – weapons storehouses, command and control centers, etc. – and were, therefore, legitimate military targets, but human rights groups pooh-poohed that claim.
Now, however, Amnesty has admitted that Hamas used Gaza’s main hospital as a detention, interrogation and torture center. And if Hamas was misusing a hospital in this way, it defies belief to think it wasn’t similarly misusing other civilian buildings for military purposes. Once you admit that Hamas did so once, there’s no reason to think it wouldn’t do so again. And, in that case, the allegation that Israel wantonly attacked civilian structures also collapses.
Thus in its reports on Hamas, Amnesty has effectively demolished its two main allegations against Israel. And if it had a shred of honor and decency left, it would admit it. But, needless to say, I’m not holding my breath."
"Processus de paix"
- Take Netanyahu at his word on negotiations, Ben-Dror Yemini (Ynet) - "Netanyahu's proposal comes to resolve the ongoing disputes with Europe and the United States. After all, the Clinton peace plan, the Geneva Initiative and Olmert's proposal all include settlement blocs. So why does construction in Ramat Shlomo, which will never be ceded under any peace arrangement, spark responses that sound like we are dealing with settlement building in the heart of Jenin?"
"In a meeting a few days ago with EU Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu proposed holding a series of talks about the "settlement borders." Gilad Erdan, whose new titles make him one of Israel's six foreign ministers, added in response that "the negotiations will involve territorial concessions." Like with any proposal linked to Netanyahu, the regular choir broke out into its well-known chorus: He's fooling everyone; he doesn't mean it; it's simply another move to buy time; he's deceiving us again.
Interestingly, when Netanyahu says something in the opposite vein, the likes of the statement: "There won't be a Palestinian state during my term in office," he becomes the most trustworthy individual who truly means every word he says – even if the statement came in the heat of the election campaign and was designed to attract voters right of the Likud. Why the hell is Netanyahu viewed as a con artist only when he says something that rings of moderation? And how come those very same leftists know that every rejectionist statement from Mahmoud Abbas is made "for internal purposes," only, whereas every moderate statement is "proof that the Palestinian leader wants peace" and should be taken seriously?
The settlement enterprise is the biggest bone of contention between Israel and Western leaders. They are under the impression that Israel is expanding and stifling any possibility of a Palestinian state. This isn't true. The expansion is taking place primarily within the large settlement blocs. Netanyahu's proposal comes to resolve the ongoing disputes with Europe and the United States. After all, the Clinton peace plan, the Geneva Initiative and Olmert's proposal all include settlement blocs. So why does construction in Ramat Shlomo, which will never be ceded under any peace arrangement, spark responses that sound like we are dealing with settlement building in the heart of Jenin?
US Secretary of State John Kerry ran back and forth between Ramallah and Jerusalem. He prepared a draft proposal, which wasn't very different to the Clinton plan. Netanyahu appeared inclined to respond positively to most of its clauses. He didn't agree to the division of Jerusalem. At a crunch meeting at the White House on March 17, 2014, Abbas and his team rejected the offer – in the exact same way that the same Abbas rejected Ehud Olmert's offer in 2008; and in the exact same way that Yasser Arafat rejected Clinton's proposal in late 2000. Tzipi Livni, in all fairness, made it clear that the talks mediated by Kerry didn't fail because of Netanyahu, but primarily due to Abbas. The moderate, so very moderate, Palestinian leader has already said no, and will continue to say no, to any and every proposal that does not include the right of return en masse.
Against this backdrop, the Zionist left should have seized on Netanyahu's initiative to determine the "borders of the settlements" because in light of Abbas' positions, and also due to the current geopolitical situation and the make-up of the new Israeli government, there is no chance of securing a peace deal. But there is a chance to adopt measures that would ward off the disaster of one big state. And the most important step in this direction is to put a stop to the expansion of the settlement enterprise.
It can be done – because in the framework of the talks with Kerry, Netanyahu agreed to a Palestinian state covering more than 90 percent of the West Bank. Netanyahu's consent came under pressure; it was forced out of him; but he gave it. Thus, a dialogue is possible. There is room for an important step. And when the danger of a takeover of Judea and Samaria by one of the Jihadi offshoots, like Hamas, subsides, we can move on to additional steps. But if nothing is done, if the stagnation persists, then the horrific vision of a single state will begin to take shape.
It turns out that the Palestinians aren't the only ones to miss every opportunity; the new Zionist left, as opposed to the Zionist left of yesteryear, would rather stick with political cattiness than afford a chance, albeit a small one, to taking a step in the right direction."
- Barak: Israel should seriously consider unilateral disengagement from Palestinians (JP)
"Former prime minister Ehud Barak said Thursday that Israel should consider unilateral moves to disengage from the Palestinians, in the event that efforts to relaunch negotiations with PA President Mahmoud Abbas should fail. [...] He said that such a plan would entail “marking a border inside of Israel that includes, of course, the settlement blocs and all of the neighborhoods in Jerusalem, as well as the military presence on the Jordan River in which we have had a Jewish majority for generations, which will answer our security concerns. And alongside this an independent Palestinian state will be established.”
When asked why the withdrawal from Lebanon, which he orchestrated, is seen in a more positive light than the 2005 disengagement from the Gaza Strip, Barak said that, in another 10 years, he believes the Gaza disengagement will also be seen in a more positive light. The idea of the disengagement from Gaza was right, he maintained, but the execution was flawed. “The handling of the residents was not properly prepared. It was improvised and improper. Israel could have built them respectable neighborhoods so that we would not have a situation 10 years later in which they are thrown in caravans in Nitzanim.” [...]"
- Muslim Scholars: Israel Is ‘Root Cause’ of All Islamic Nations’ Failures (Breitbart) - "the Muslim scholars all agreed that Israel is a “root cause of economic, political and cultural problems facing Muslim nations in recent decades.” The Muslim “academics” unanimously agreed that “confronting the Tel Aviv regime” is a “top priority of Islamic resistance movements”."
"Muslim clerics gathered in Beirut on Wednesday to kick off the Khomeinist International Union of Resistance conference, where “scholars” discussed how to stand up against the “cancerous tumor of Israel,” according to reports from Lebanese and Iranian media outlets.
Radical Iranian cleric Mohsen Araki said that destroying Israel and “countering the arrogant world” should be the two main priorities for “resistance clerics,” reports Iran’s state-run Taghrib News. Araki, who once served as Iranian dictator Ali Khamenei’s representative in London, continued with his speech. “Standing against the arrogant world and its representative in the region, the cancerous tumor of Israel, is a must which should be shouldered by resistance clerics and leaders,” he said, according to the state-media report.
Al Manar, a media outlet closely affiliated with the Lebanese terror group Hezbollah, said that scholars “praised the achievements” of the Iran-allied Assad regime in Syria. Hezbollah Deputy Secretary General Naim Qassem told the audience that Syria’s successes on the battlefield – with the help of Hezbollah and Iran – are “a pure success which will be followed by others, Allah willing.” When asked whether criticism of his terrorist group was legitimate, the Hezbollah leader said that such criticism only “serves the Israeli scheme,” Al Manar reported. Qassem, as Hezbollah’s second-in-command, has regularly reminded observers that his organization’s chief goal is to seek the destruction of Israel. He has argued that Islamic law allows for Hezbollah jihadists to carry out suicide attacks against Israel.
Iran’s state-run Press TV reports that the Muslim scholars all agreed that Israel is a “root cause of economic, political and cultural problems facing Muslim nations in recent decades.” The Muslim “academics” unanimously agreed that “confronting the Tel Aviv regime” is a “top priority of Islamic resistance movements.” The clerics promised to support “the resistance” (Hezbollah, Hamas, and other jihadist terrorist groups) in their mission to destroy Israel, according to the report."
- ‘Not recognizing Israel as Jewish is anti-Semitic, Pope says’ (Times of Israel)
"In what would constitute a stunning rhetorical volte-face, Pope Francis reportedly walked back earlier statements praising Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and dubbed some of Israel’s detractors “anti-Semitic.” In comments made to veteran Portuguese-Israeli journalist Henrique Cymerman Thursday, Francis was quoted as saying that “anyone who does not recognize the Jewish people and the State of Israel — and their right to exist — is guilty of anti-Semitism.” Francis was also said to have backtracked on statements he was reportedly heard making earlier this month designating the visiting Abbas “a bit an angel of peace.” The pope recalled telling Abbas in Italian that he hopes the Palestinian chief might one day become an angel of peace in the future, according to Cymerman — although ostensibly he has not yet reached that level. [...]"
- US ambassador to Jordan creates international incident for visiting LGBT meeting (Elder of Ziyon) - "A Jordanian lawyer was behind the complaint. He says that Wells was violating the Jordanian constitution, which says that Islam is the official religion of Jordan and that the family is the basis of society. Therefore, these meetings were against Jordanian law, he says, and formal actions should be taken against Ambassador Wells for participating in an illegal meeting. Images of Wells at the meeting were leaked to social media, causing an uproar in Jordan".
- Syrie : 45 civils tués dans des raids du régime à Alep (AFP) - "Au moins 45 civils dont des femmes et des enfants ont été tués samedi dans raids aux barils d'explosifs menés par des hélicoptères du régime syrien contre la province d'Alep, dans le nord du pays en guerre, selon une ONG syrienne".
- Yémen : 40 rebelles tués dans les raids aériens (AFP) - "Le conflit au Yémen a fait près de 2.000 morts et 8.000 blessés, dont des centaines de femmes et d'enfants, selon l'Organisation mondiale de la santé".
- Nucléaire iranien : c’est mal parti, Michel Colomès (Le Point) - "À un mois de la fin des négociations, les Iraniens multiplient les exigences dont eux-mêmes savent qu'elles peuvent faire capoter l'accord" ; "Dans cette affaire, on doit au moins à la France d’avoir été plus réaliste et lucide que ses partenaires".
"[...] les négociateurs, l’Iran d’un côté, de l'autre les « 5+1 » (les cinq membres du conseil de sécurité plus l’Allemagne), se sont retrouvés mercredi 27 mai à Genève. En principe, il s'agissait de finaliser l’accord conclu le 2 avril. Et là on a tout de suite compris que c’était mal parti. Même s’il faut évidemment tenir compte dans ce genre de bras de fer diplomatique des postures que prennent les représentants des différents pays pour faire monter les enchères et faire mine de ne pas se laisser forcer la main.
Comme souvent, depuis le début des conversations de Genève, c’est la France qui a adopté l’attitude la plus ferme, le comportement le plus sceptique. « Il n’y aura pas d’acceptation de l’accord par la France, a déclaré mercredi Laurent Fabius, le ministre des Affaires étrangères, s’il n’est pas clair qu’une vérification pourra être faite auprès de toutes les installations iraniennes, y compris les sites militaires. » Une déclaration qui a le mérite de mettre les points sur les i. Car c’est une nouvelle exigence de Téhéran que les négociateurs de Genève, ces dernières semaines, préféraient ne pas trop mettre en avant pour ne pas faire capoter la reprise des discussions : Téhéran refuse maintenant que les experts de l’AIEA chargés de contrôler les laboratoires et les sites de transformation de l’uranium en Iran puissent inspecter leurs installations militaires. Ce qui revient à dire : pour vérifier que nous ne fabriquons pas de bombe, on vous donne le droit d’inspecter nos laboratoires civils, mais pas nos sites militaires !
Et ce n’est pas tout : les Iraniens ont ajouté une nouvelle exigence : un préavis de 24 jours avant toute inspection. C’est-à-dire suffisamment de temps pour permettre aux Iraniens de dissimuler du matériel, du combustible ou des recherches qui contreviendraient à l’accord.
Les Iraniens avaient pleinement conscience que leurs dernières exigences passeraient mal. La preuve, l’un des responsables de la délégation de Téhéran, Abbas Araghchi, a déclaré, dès son arrivée à Genève, que les pourparlers pourraient se prolonger au-delà de la date butoir du 30 juin. Pas question, a rétorqué la délégation américaine. Le président Obama veut en effet une signature avant l’été, seul moyen pour lui de se donner le temps de faire accepter l’accord par le Congrès. Ce qui n’est pas gagné.
On vous le dit, on avait tort de se réjouir trop vite d’être parvenu, comme le disait Obama, « à écarter définitivement la menace de prolifération nucléaire au Proche-Orient ». Dans cette affaire, on doit au moins à la France d’avoir été plus réaliste et lucide que ses partenaires."
- IAEA not sure all nuclear material in Iran is for ‘peaceful activities’ (Times of Israel) - "UN agency says lack of cooperation from Tehran has stalled its investigations; completed probe is central to nuclear deal".
- Chypre : un homme arrêté serait lié au Hezbollah (AFP) - "Les autorités n'excluent pas que le jeune homme ait été en train de préparer une attaque contre des cibles israéliennes sur l'île méditerranéenne, dont les plages attirent des milliers de touristes israéliens chaque année".
- Chypre : un homme arrêté alors qu'il allait commettre un attentat anti-israélien (i24) - "En 2013, un tribunal chypriote avait condamné un binational Suédois-Libanais à quatre ans de prison après qu'il eut été reconnu coupable d'avoir collaboré à la planification d'attaques contre des Israéliens à Chypre".
- Cyprus police foil planned Hezbollah attacks against Israeli targets in Europe (Haaretz) - "Israeli authorities updated regarding alleged plan by suspected Hezbollah operative to target Israelis and Jewish sites, including synagogues".
- Pays-Bas : le ministère de l’Education prend ses distances avec les manuels « anti-Israël » (JTA)
"Le ministère de l’Education néerlandaise a pris ses distances avec un manuel qui contenaient des déclarations jugées anti-israéliennes. La déclaration du ministère sur le livre est survenue après des plaintes d’élèves juifs et de leurs parents. Le manuel scolaire décrivait la création d’Israël comme le résultat de l’assassinat généralisé des villageois palestiniens. Ce livre critiquait aussi en cause l’ancien Premier ministre israélien Menahem Begin. Il questionnait sa qualité d’artisan de paix, notant qu’il était plus « connu comme un terroriste et un extrémiste ».
Le ministère « n’approuve pas ces manuels scolaires, ils sont choisis par chaque école », a indiqué un porte-parole du ministère au JTA mercredi. Il a refusé de commenter les affirmations contenues dans le livre. L’ambassade d’Israël aux Pays-Bas a, la semaine dernière, déclaré que les affirmations contenues dans « Geschiedeniswerkplaats » ou « Lieu de travail de l’Histoire », le manuel de Noordhoff Uitgevers était « scandaleux »."
- Another "nakba" liar (Elder of Ziyon) - "Now, what were the circumstances of Hasoun's family's being "forced to flee" to Lebanon? His book gives the answer".
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