SWI NEWS: Monday, March 28 2011 22 AdarII,5771


Internet Backlash at Facebook Defense of Third Intifada

  by Chana Ya'ar
A growing backlash is well underway in response to the unwillingness of Facebook to remove a page promoting a third violent Intifada against Israel. The site has said it will monitor and remove violent posts, but is unwilling to remove the page despite numerous complaints and clear evidence that its content violates Facebook's own Terms of Service.
In addition to official requests by the government of the State of Israel and the New York-based Anti-Defamation League (ADL), numerous other groups and private individual members have reported the page to the social networking site as a violation of its terms of service. Among the most vocal was United with Israel, with a 200,000-strong Jewish pro-Israel Facebook community. “As soon as the Third Palestinian Intifada page hit, we got to work putting up a web page with an 'open letter' to Facebook,” said Michael Gerbitz, spokesman for the group.  “We also are seeking to unite the entire pro-Israel world by gaining 'one million voices for peace in Israel' on our Facebook page to oppose the Palestinians' drive for one million fans who advocate violence and slaughter of innocent Israelis.” Gerbitz pointed out that sometimes it takes a crisis to bring together all the disparate fragments of the Jewish world – but once they have come together, “we can do so much.” Rabbi Yeshayahu Hollander has also joined the campaign to pressure Facebook into removing the page. “We all know what can happen with the social media these days,” wrote Hollander in a message sent out to his personal email list. “If you look at the wall of this Facebook page, you will see a lot of people calling for the death of the Jews and for the destruction of Israel. “ Hollander, a member of the nascent reconstituted Sanhedrin, instructed readers in his letter  to report the page to Facebook as a violation of the site's terms of service under “Violence of Harmful Behavior” and “Credible Threat of Violence.”.  (IsraelNationalNews.com)

New York Rally: Israel has Rights Too

  by Larry Domnitch
The Israeli Consulate on 2nd Ave. and 42nd Street in New York City was the scene of a major show of support for Israel on Sunday, March 27th. Over 200 people attended the rally in support of Israel's right to protect its citizens against Arab terror. It was also held as a memorial to the victims of the most recent terror attacks - the five members of the Fogel family of Itamar, and UK citizen Mary Jane Gardner from Yad HaShmonah, who was killed in the Jerusalem bombing. Israeli flags and posters declaring support for Israel were held high to cheers, well-wishers, and supportive honking of automobile horns from many passersby headed down 2nd. Ave. The group was led by Rabbi Avi Weiss and joined by the mayor of Itamar, Rabbi Moshe Goldsmith, and his wife Leah. Many attended with their prayerbooks and Israeli flags. The event was sponsored by a host of Jewish organizations working together, including Amcha: Coalition for Jewish Concerns, Americans For a Safe Israel, Zionist Organization America, Stand With Us, Z-Street, Russian American Jewish Experience, Human Rights Coalition Against Radical Islam, Dor Chadash, Jewish International Connection New York, Fuel For Truth, One Heart Global, AmbassaDor, and IsraAmerica. Main rally organizer Hillary Markowitz of Amcha named those injured in the recent Jerusalem bus station attack, and asked, "Where is the outrage? Where is the outcry? Where is President Obama? ... We are here to say that the Jews will stay in Israel. And that we will not sit by quietly!" Leah Goldsmith, the wife of Itamar’s mayor, stated, “We are at war when people come on Shabbat to slaughter men, women, and children. President Obama has asked the Israeli government to remove the soldiers from the Tapuach junction near us, which protected the Jerusalem-Shechem road. So you got the butchering of a family, then a bombing at a bus stop because the White House thinks that soldiers checking Arabs is a human rights violation." "Itamar is on a mountain. To the west we can see the skyscrapers of Tel Aviv, and to the east, we see the Jordan Valley. Do you want us, or Hamas, on that mountain?” Rabbi Avi Weiss, of the Hebrew Institute of Riverdale, addressed the Palestinian Authority: "Israel wants real peace. You must be a real partner. Don't speak with a forked tongue; one way to the western media, and one way to your own people." Rabbi Weiss demanded the PA "stop hate in the media." He told President Obama that when US officials speak about the "illegality of settlements before negotiating, these kind of statements contribute in their own way to this kind of crime. If you strengthen Israel, you strengthen America. If you weaken Israel, you weaken America." Itamar's Mayor Goldsmith spoke of the difficulty of leaving his community during these difficult moments, but stressed the need for every Jew to stand up and speak out. “Israel needs every Jew to stand with us. We have for a long time given our lives to build Itamar. The entire world knows G-d gave the land to the Jewish people. The deed to the land is in the Bible... For the sake of Zion, we shall not be silent. For every attack, we will build". Jacob Kimchi, the son of 2002 terrorism victim Rami Kimchi, the co-founder of One Heart Global whose mission is to assist victims of terror, stated, “I’d like to know if the presidents of the US, Russia, or European countries would allow missiles to bombard their capitals, or suicide bombers to target their civilians.” Rabbi Weiss led the group in the singing of the popular tune “Lema’an Achai,” whose words mean, “For the sake of my brethren and my friends, I shall speak of peace in your midst” (Psalms 122:7-9). He also offered prayers for Jonathan Pollard, asking Obama to release him from prison. Prayers were also offered on behalf of Gilad Shalit, held captive for nearly five years by Hamas.   As some of the many measures that can be taken in support of Israel, Markowitz reminded participants to purchase B.I.G. (Buy Israeli Goods) products to counter the anti-Israel boycotts. He encouraged them to visit and support the mock art show on display in Washington Square Park this week. Participants heard from Elana Benador, Goodwill Ambassador for the Shomron Liaison Office, who said that Israel has had 1,200 victims of terror attacks since the year 2000.  "That would be an equivalent of 50,297 Americans, proportionately," she said. During that same period, there have been 8,342 Israelis wounded from terror attacks.  "By American standards," she said, "that would mean roughly 350,000 wounded."  The one-and-a-half hour event concluded with prayers on behalf of the State of Israel, followed by the singing of the national anthems of Israel and the U.S.
IDF: We need to hit Gaza harder
IDF: We need to hit Gaza harder
Senior Israeli army officers on Sunday worried that the current response to escalating missile attacks from Gaza is tipping the balance in favor of Hamas and its terrorist allies. Speaking to Israel’s Ynet news portal, the officers noted that following previous escalations, Israel had responded with overwhelming force, creating a deterrence against further attacks for a period of time. Following Israel’s invasion of Gaza in late 2008 and early 2009 “a very clear equation was created whereby the IDF responds disproportionately to any violation of the state of calm,” said one officer. “Ever so often there were attempts to test us but a harsh response together with deterrence achieved by the operation had sent the message until the next time.” But Israel’s military response to the Gaza rocket and mortar barrage that began last week and saw medium-range missiles hit cities near Tel Aviv has been significantly more tempered. On top of that, the government has sought to alleviate public fears by deploying the still-experimental Iron Dome anti-missile system, which even Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned cannot and will not stop all Palestinian missiles from hitting Israeli cities. In short, instead of responding to force with even greater force, Israel this time around has responded to force by putting up a shield. The officers who spoke out believe this is a mistake, as the terrorists are constantly testing Israel’s resolve, and if they believe Israel is becoming weak, their next attack will be even bigger. Speaking in Beersheva on Sunday, Knesset Member Shaul Mofaz, current chairman of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, said Israel should return to its policy of assassinating leading terrorists in the Gaza Strip. “Israel can not hide behind the Iron Domedefense system while in Gaza life goes on,” said Mofaz. “We must maintain our ability to attack and preserve the IDF’s role as a deterrent. Without a deterrent, the Palestinian organizations are the ones that will dictate the agenda.”
Under siege: Israel fears its Arab citizens
Under siege: Israel fears its Arab citizens
The international mainstream media has a fixation with presenting Israeli and Palestinian Arabs as living under siege from the “oppressive” Jewish state. The reality is that Israeli Jews are the ones living under siege. Israel itself has been under siege (sometimes militarily, always economically) from the surrounding Muslim Middle East. But even within their own borders, Israeli Jews live under siege from an Israeli Arab population that does not fear, but is feared by, the Israeli police. It is no secret to anyone living here that Arabs in Israel can go where they please, when they please, with little or nothing to fear from Israeli Jews. This is evident by the fact that public venues in Jewish-dominated towns and neighborhoods are always so full of Israeli Arabs. The converse is not true. Israeli Jews must be extremely careful entering Arab-dominated areas, and are even barred from going into some towns and neighborhoods (particularly in Jerusalem) for fear they would be lynched. The experience of a leading Israeli journalist this past week demonstrated that this deplorable situation is not about to change, and is likely to get worse as the Arabs become increasingly radicalized and bold, and the Israeli police become increasingly fearful. Kalman Liebskind is an investigative reporter for the Israeli daily Ma’ariv. He has broken major national stories, and so is well known to most Israelis, and certainly to the police. In his most recent column, Liebskind recounted how while driving to his home in a central Israeli town, he and his family came under attack from Arab stone throwers. The assault occurred just a hundred yards from Liebskind’s home in Gimzu, a suburban neighborhood of Lod, which sits adjacent to Ben Gurion International Airport. “I could hardly believe it was true,” Liebskind wote. “Rocks? On our road? An asteroid hitting us seemed more probable than rock throwing 100 yards from our home.” The first stone hit the car behind Liebskind, which was being driven by his wife, and in which some of his children were traveling. When he turned around to gather them, Liebskind’s car was also hit. He identified the assailants as two youths, who quickly retreated into the nearby forest. Liebskind and other resident of Gimzu called the police, but were frustrated by the long wait they were made to endure. When the police finally arrived, then entered the forest together with Liebskind and two other neighbors so they could identify the stone throwers. The Jewish band was surprised to come upon a group of about 20 Israeli Arab males gathered around a large fire. Most were young men, youths really, but there were also a few “elders” wearing Islamic clerical garb. To his horror, Liebskind recalled, the Arabs threatened, “If we want to, we can burn all of Gimzu.” The reporter noticed that the Arabs, who said they had just come from a mosque service in Lod, had spray-painted Arabic writing on a number of trees. The police did not seem to care, either about the threat or the vandalism, and took the stone-thrower that Liebskind identified into custody. A friend had tried to warn Liebskind that as clear-cut as the incident may appear to be, the tables would turn on him, as they always do when an Israeli Jew is attacked by and then complains against an Israeli Arab. “Every time we catch them doing something, they immediately present a counter complaint,” said the friend. “You will soon find yourself under investigation.” Liebskind laughed off the warning. A few days later, he was no longer finding his friend’s words so ridiculous. After being summoned to the Lod police station, presumably to clarify a few points in his complaint, Liebskind was shocked to find himself being accused of criminal activity. It turns out that the group of Arabs had indeed filed their own complaint, claiming that Liebskind had used a weapon to threaten them. Either fearful of upsetting Arabs who were ready to burn down Jewish villages, or simply lacking any common sense whatsoever, the police booked Liebskind before releasing him on personal recognizance. In his column, Liebskind advised fellow Israelis to stop turning to a police department that is “tired and worthless,” where “officers just want to finish their shift and get home.” Rather, Israelis who “find their lives threatened by a nationalist criminal element” should do everything possible to protect themselves, said Liebskind. “Don’t turn to the police, they won’t help. They will just interfere and waste your time, and ultimately make you the criminal.” Unfortunately, it is not simply exhaustion that has made Israel’s police unreliable in such situations. Liebskind’s remark about the police viewing innocent Jewish petitioners as criminals is more on mark. The Jews living in Judea and Samaria know all too well about Arabs accusing them of crimes they did not commit, only to have police officers fearful of Arab threats of violence accept those accusations at face value. And the media eats this stuff up. The sad truth is that if Israelis are unwilling to protect and defend one another, how can they expect the rest of the world, which is predisposed to anti-Israel hostility, to even think of giving them a fair shake

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