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December 17, 2016

IMPACT OF ISRAEL'S F-35 SLEUTHS ON IRANIAN NULCEAR THREAT

All systems are go for Israel's Air Force to start operational training on their F-35s, touted to be the top fighter-bomber in the world. Israeli top pilots have long been training on simulators and are eager to get inside the cockpit. Maintenance crews have also been burning the midnight oil studying the myriad of hi-tech that comes with the $100 million price tag (although funded by U.S. military aid). Squadron leader IAF Col. Yotam promises the F-35s will go operational within a year. In addition, the IAF has permission to upgrade the F-35 with secret Israeli improvements - the products of Israeli hi-tech that have proved so effective in the F-15 and F-16. In an unguarded moment, the squadron leader went gung ho saying we'll make changes the designers never dreamed about and they won't believe it a year from now.

While only the first two landed at the Nevatim Air base, more and more will be coming. Fifty are now on order. The IAf has dubbed the F-35 in Hebrew by the name of 'Adir' - the Mighty. Israel is the first foreign country to be supplied with the F-35. The rest of America's allies will keep an eagle eye on how successfully the IAF integrates this aircraft. If things go well they can be expected to also start ordering F-35s from Lockheed-Martin. So economically a lot is riding on its going operational in Israel.

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November 27, 2016

ISRAEL ENGULFED IN DISASTROUS FOREST FIRES & GERMAN SUBS

So far, no people have been killed, but over one thousand homes have been destroyed or damaged while tens of thousands of people were evacuated as the flames raced towards their communities. Some Israelis had to race for their lives carrying their small children and pets. Thousands of animals perished in the flames while tens of thousands of trees have been incinerated in over two hundred separate fires. Forestland that was planted and developed over the decades has been left a wasteland. It is a national disaster.

Visiting the Hatzor Air Base from where special firefighting aircraft have been 'bombing' the fires around the clock, Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu said experts have concluded there is no doubt that arsonists are involved, although the dry weather and strong winds may have started the inferno. Thirty-three Palestinian suspects have been arrested as the investigation continues. Netanyahu believes the arson campaign is a 'derivative' of the wave of 'lone wolf' terrorism that started over a year ago. Now it is a case of terrorists deliberately igniting forest fires rather than wielding knives or hatchets. In other words: 'If you can't stab them, let's burn them!'

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November 11, 2016

President Elect Trump Tells Israel He rejects Imposed Settlement With Palestinians

Jerusalem:

Israel is split - The Right is jubilant whereas the Center-Left worries that the election of President Trump will spur the Netanyahu government to build new settlements on the West Bank. There is no question that Netanyahu will be under immense pressure from the far Right to do so. In heralding the Trump victory, Cabinet Minister Naftali Bennett leader of the Far Right 'Jewish Home' party declared 'The two-state solution is finished! It is now in our hands to change the course of Israel - to take Israel out of the Oslo perception of a Palestinian state, which has only brought us conflict and bloodshed!'

In Jerusalem, the chairman of the local planning committee at City Hall has announced he will present plans to build 7,000 housing units in territory across the old 1967 line. The fire-brand called Meir Turgeman told Israel Radio that Prime Minister Netanyahu himself froze the plans for one reason or another due to pressure from the Obama administration. However Turgeman added now that Trump has been elected, Netanyahu will have no excuse to intervene. Though, the building plans must first be approved by the Israeli cabinet before the bulldozers start rolling.

Netanyahu who steered clear of expressing support for either Trump or Clinton issued a statement congratulating the President Elect and thanking Clinton for her support in the past. He is obviously delighted that Trump won. It's a safe bet that Bibi will want to cement ties with Trump as soon as possible. Therefore he will not want to arouse Trump's ire with hasty decisions. Bibi has also apparently instructed his Likud cabinet ministers not to go overboard by giving the impression that Trump is now in Israel's pocket. Netanyahu and his colleagues including Naftali Bennett would do well to remember that Trump has risen to power on his 'America First' platform and this will continue to be his prism for all his foreign policy decisions. If anything, policy-makers in Jerusalem must have realized Trump is impulsive and at times totally unpredictable.

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October 09, 2016

ISRAEL - WHAT WENT WRONG? YOM KIPPUR 2016

Jerusalem:

On Yom Kippur - the Day of Atonement in 1973, the new-born state of Israel was nearly wiped off the map. Egypt and Syria launched a massive surprise attack along the entire lengths of the Golan Heights and the Suez Canal. The IDF was caught napping - when it finally awakened just several hours before the onslaught, Prime Minister Golda Meir and Defense Minister Moshe Dayan rejected a plea by Chief of Staff David Elezar to launch a preventative air strike against the massed Arab forces, about to surge forward. The Israeli leaders feared the US would blame Israel for starting the war because both President Richard Nixon and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger did not believe the Arabs would dare attack Israel. In the opening weeks of the Yom Kippur War, it was touch-and-go whether the Jewish state would survive. The IDF forces along the Suez Canal and the Golan were outnumbered ten-to-one in tanks and artillery, and by far more in infantry. Moreover the Russians had just supplied sophisticated anti-aircraft missiles to both their Arab allies that shot down an alarming number of Israeli aircraft. In one of the war’s darkest hours, a desolate Dayan was heard to say:

      'The Third House of Israel may be about to fall!'

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October 03, 2016

SHIMON PERES - (1923- 2016) DREAMER & VISIONARY

Jerusalem:

Why did world leaders and ninety delegations from seventy countries attend the funeral of Shimon Peres in Jerusalem? An amazing number for a tiny country that is more often than not the butt of unbridled criticism in the corridors of the UN. They did so, as stated by US President Barack Obama, because Peres achieved the international stature of a Nelson Mandella during his incredible career that never ended until his final stroke.

First Peres bolstered the capability of the fledgling Jewish state to survive the repeated attempts by its Arab enemies to annihilate it. His contribution to Israel's defense was possibly more, and certainly no less, than many of the state's vaunted military commanders. To this very day, Israelis stand strong against threats unparalleled by any other democratic country. Although survival had to come first in the reborn homeland of the Jews, it was to be followed by a ceaseless quest for peace with her Arab neighbors.

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September 25, 2016

Netanyahu & Abbas Talk Past Each Other At the UN

Jerusalem:

At this week's UN General Assembly session, Israel's Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, poured on the rhetoric but ignored the two key elements at the core of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. They both stuck to two straight lines in the war of words and we all know that straight lines almost never meet, except in outer space. And until the two leaders start talking in the same plane there will be no peace. Leading off the debate, Abbas actually refused to come to terms with the idea of a Jewish state while Bibi glossed over the Israeli occupation of the West Bank (Judea & Samaria).

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August 20, 2016

An Israeli Reply to George Soros

Jerusalem:

This is the appalling reality of the Middle East that faces Israel today: next door in Syria, over five-hundred thousand people, mostly civilians, have already been killed in a six year blood-bath. Several times more have been wounded while millions of refugees flee to Western Europe. Marking time until he soon retires, US Secretary of State John Kerry will jaw-jaw some more with the Russian's Sergey Lavrov. Meanwhile the Russians are now flying air strikes from an Iranian air base to make it easier to hit their civilian, rebel and Da'esh targets. Human rights groups estimate that 17,000 people have been tortured to death in Assad prisons. At this moment, Da'esh sadists are carrying out their genocide of the Yazidi people. The rebel held town of Aleppo was just attacked with chlorine gas in barrel bombs. From the town, a group of doctors has sent out a frantic plea to US President Barack Obama, leader of the Free world:

      'We do not need tears or sympathy or even prayers. We desperately need a zone free from bombing .. and international action.'

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July 01, 2016

Netanyahu: 'You Don't Slit a Little Girl's Throat…!'

Israelis must brace up to terror attacks of one kind or another - it is part of the nation's struggle for survival. None are easy, but some hit harder than others.

Thursday morning 8:38 AM in Kiryat Arba in Judea-West Bank:

Thirteen-year-old Hallel Yaffa Ariel is sleeping in her bed alone in her home. The summer vacation has already begun and Hallel, an ardent dancer is sleeping-in after performing the night before in Jerusalem.

A seventeen-year-old Palestinian from the nearby town of Bani Na’im jumps over the Israeli security fence built around the community sounding the alarm at the security headquarters. The terrorist races to the nearest Israeli home and enters. It is still not clear if the door or a window was left open. Armed with a knife, he rushes to the children’s' room, where Hallel is apparently still sleeping, and stabs her eight times.

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June 24, 2016

F-35 Stealth Jets to Israel – Act II of Obama’s Political Drama

The delivery of the first two F-35 stealth fighters to Israel this week marks the close of Act II in President Barack Obama's Middle East policy. Act I was based on Obama's nuclear deal with Iran. It removed the only thing that could have fouled up his decision to cut America's losses and get out of the Middle East. Failure to find a diplomatic solution to suspending Iran's nuclear weapons program could have triggered an Israeli preventative strike that would have drawn in the US militarily. From Obama's point of view, this was and is a deliberate and rational policy. The fireworks with Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu were simply an inevitable result - collateral damage, it wasn't all personal, 'it was business'. Even Ben Rhodes, apparently in a lapse of megalomania, bragged how he and his buddies had pulled the strings of the American media like puppets.

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June 17, 2016

Netanyahu Faces Political Rebellion in Israel

Ongoing genocide of Yazidis in Syria...

Yazidis are neither Muslim nor Arab, and follow a distinct faith that is abhorred by Daesh. At this very moment, Daesh is perpetrating genocide of 400,000 Yazidi women, children and men, mostly in Syria. Everyone has known it's been going on and now the UN has verified it. Chairman Paul Pinheiro has issued a report by the UN commission of Inquiry in Geneva disclosing:

       'Genocide has occurred and is ongoing. ISIS (Daesh) has subjected every Yazidi woman, child and man that it has captured to the most horrific of atrocities. Girls as young as nine are being raped, as are pregnant women. More than 3,200 Yazidi women and children are being held mostly in Syria'.

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June 02, 2016

Is Israel at Center of New Middle East?

The French are at it again. Nearly one hundred years to the day after France concluded the notorious Sykes-Picot agreement with the Brits, and Paris has once more come to the fore in the Middle East by convening an international conference to deal with the Israeli- Palestinian dispute.

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April 22, 2016

Russian Pilots in a Buzzing Mood!

In the Middle East, Russian Air Force pilots are at it again. Recently they startled two US Navy vessels by roaring over their decks in a mock attack, and now they have threatened an Israeli jet, apparently on a peaceful reconnaissance flight over what was the former Syria, trying to spot more Syrian-Iran shipments of sophisticated weapons to Hezbollah in Lebanon. In the American incident, President Obama viewed it as a one-time thing and did not take it too seriously - along the line of 'boys will be boys'. And Obama probably got this right - if Donald Trump were President we'd probably be in the middle of World War III with Russian's new Czar Vladimir!

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March 11, 2016

Obama's Middle East Myth vs. Reality

Iran's radical Revolutionary Guards didn't waste any time. Just days after the 'moderates' were thought to have made gains in the election, the real rulers of Iran launched more ballistic missiles. Those menacing missiles were painted in Hebrew with the words 'Israel must be wiped out!' Clearly this demonstration had the green light from Supreme Leader, Grand Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. The point is that ballistic missiles have one purpose - to deliver a nuclear warhead. In this case, they had a range of 2,000 kilometers (1240 miles), and they can most definitely target Israel. To their credit, the Revolutionary Guards do not want anyone to get the wrong impression that the moderates are on the ascendancy in Tehran.

 

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February 26, 2016

Smoke & Mirrors of Syrian Ceasefire

A ceasefire to halt the carnage in a bloody civil war should be a welcome event. But this is not likely in Syria. Two of the most vicious combatants, Daesh and Jabhat al Nusra (an affiliate of al Qaeda) are not even party to it, and Russia has forewarned that it will react with force to any violations by the rebels who seek to oust Syrian President Bashar Assad. And after President Putin sent in his airborne 'cavalry' to save Assad by bombing just about anything that moved, the Syrian tyrant is firmly in place in his presidential palace in Damascus.

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February 12, 2016

Israeli High-Tech Takes on Hamas Tunnels

Why do Hamas tunnels keep caving in? Is it only due to heavy rain and work accidents, or has Israel solved the problem of those Hamas tunnels being excavated under the border from inside Gaza? More of those tunnels have mysteriously caved-in recently - five in the past three weeks. According to Hamas, twelve of its members have been killed under the rubble. (Yes, Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh has admitted publicly that his men are tunneling night and day with the aim of launching terror attacks against civilians and IDF soldiers just over the border).

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January 29, 2016

U.S. & Britain hack into Israel's Top Secret Drone Operations

From a mountaintop in nearby Cyprus, American and British cyber spies have been hacking into Israel's most closely guarded secrets for years. In a startling expose, the Intercept website has revealed a joint American-British operation 'to steal a bird's-eye-view' of Israeli drone operations. Not only that, they are also monitoring any Israeli preparations for a military strike against Iran's nuclear sites. This is how Intercept described what one Israeli has deemed as the gravest penetration of Israel's 'holiest of holies':

          "American and British Intelligence secretly tapped into live video feeds from Israeli drones and fighter jets monitoring military operations in Gaza, watching for a potential strike against Iran, and keeping tabs on the drone technology Israel exports around the world."

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January 22, 2016

Netanyahu Outlines a New Strategy after Iranian Nuclear Deal

In Davos, Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu charted a new course. In a memorable interview with Fareed Zekaria, Netanyahu stressed that new clandestine ties with the Sunni Arab countries will supersede a solution to the Palestinian issue:

          'There is a great shift taking place - we used to think that if we solved the Israeli-Palestinian conflict it would solve the larger Israeli-Arab conflict. The more I look at it, the more I think it may be the other way round. That by nurturing these relationships that are taking place now with the Arab world, that could actually help us resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and we're actually working towards that end'.

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January 15, 2016

Iran's Realpolitik & U.S. Sailors

The symbolism was stark. Just days before Washington was due to lift billions of dollars of sanctions on Tehran, the Iranians humiliated ten American sailors who were forced to their knees with their hands behind their heads in submission. The photos from the Persian Gulf were flashed around the world showing who is boss in the Persian Gulf. Just hours later, U.S. President Barack Obama ignored the ignominious incident in his last speech to the nation. On the contrary, he lauds the nuclear deal with Iran. And his Secretary of State, John Kerry, even thanks his Iranian counter-part, Javad Zarif, for the subsequent release of the wayward sailors.

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January 08, 2016

Saudi Arabia-Turkey-Israel Alliance Against Iran?

IsraCast assesses what might soon emerge in light of Iran's ascendancy that has been bolstered by its nuclear deal with the U.S. and what is perceived as Obama's deference to Tehran in Riyadh. At home, the terror attack that killed two Israelis in the center of Tel Aviv leaves some key unanswered questions.

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January 01, 2016

Jerusalem was aware of American spying operation

The U.S. spies on Israel - so what else is new? If U.S. President Obama spied on German Chancellor Merkel and French President Hollande, Prime Minister Netanyahu should be proud to be included in such an august group. Besides, didn't Israel and the U.S. team up to spy on Iran's nuclear program and unleash the Stuxnet virus that derailed it in 2011? With advanced cybernetics and hi-tech, it's only natural that nations, having the capability, will employ it to protect and advance their national interests.

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