Browsing Posts tagged Iran

First appeared in the March 29th edition of The Wall Street Journal

“Gadhafi unilaterally forfeited his nuclear weapons program by 2004, turning over uranium-enriching centrifuges and warhead designs. A dictator like him—capable of ordering the murders of 259 civilians aboard Pan Am Flight 103 and countless others in many countries including his own—would not easily concede the ultimate weapon. Gadhafi did so because he believed he was less secure with the bomb than he would be after relinquishing it. He feared that the U.S., which had recently invaded Iraq, would deal with him much as it had Saddam Hussein.

A similar fear, many intelligence experts in the U.S. and elsewhere believe, impelled the Iranian regime to suspend its own nuclear weapons program in 2003. According to these analysts, the program resumed only when the threat of military intervention receded. It continues to make steady progress today.

Now is the moment to dissuade the Iranian regime from obtaining a nuclear weapon that might deter any Libya-like intervention or provide the ayatollahs with a doomsday option. If Gadhafi had not surrendered his centrifuges in 2004 and he were now surrounded in his bunker with nothing left but a button, would he push it?”

To read the complete Op-Ed, click here.

List of Weaponry Found on the “Victoria”

Pictured here: A C-704 anti-ship missile found on the ship

Below is preliminary list of weaponry and weaponry systems discovered and unloaded this morning at the Ashdod Port hidden in the cargo of the “Victoria” vessel.

  • 230 mortar shells, 120 mm
  • 2,270 mortar shells, 60 mm
  • 6 C-704 anti-ship missiles
  • 2 radar systems manufactured in England
  • 2 launchers
  • 2 hydraulic mounting cranes for radar system
  • 66,960  bullets for the Kalashnikov, 7.62 millimeter

It is important to note that the C-704 shore-to-sea missiles have a range of 35 kilometers and according to assessments, their intended destination to the Gaza Strip would have constituted a significant gain in the weapons capabilities of terror organizations operating there.

From The Huffington Post:

The Middle East is about to change. No, the dysfunctional political systems are not about to become more free or fair or democratic. National economies are not going to improve and create jobs and perspectives for its people. Women will not see more equality and opportunities. Education will not prepare the youth better for the future. It is about to change because of a dynamic race over primacy in the region. And it is not the usual suspects such as Egypt or Saudi Arabia, who are competing for the leadership role. The region is witnessing an unusual contest. In a curious twist, those rivals are neither Arab nor traditional Sunni Muslim. It is non-Arab Turkey and Shiite Iran who threw their hats in the ring and despite all displays and declarations of friendship they compete to dominate the region.

continue reading…

The story of the Jewish people is that of great destruction followed by miraculous redemption.

That same resilient spirit is exemplified by your collective efforts to help this great city rebuild itself after Hurricane Katrina.

Just as you have rallied time after time to help Israel weather the storms it has faced, you rallied to help New Orleans to get back on its feet.

You should be proud of what you have been doing for the Jewish people and the Jewish state, and for others. I am doubly proud to be with you here today. Thank you. continue reading…

Following the incident off the coast of Gaza on May 31st, specifically the IDF’s actions after boarding the Mavi Marmara, Israel has been accused of wrongdoing and breaking international law. Israel has always believed that exposing the truth is in their best interest as it has nothing to hide. The old adage “the truth will set you free” was the impetus for the creation of the Turkel Commission, an independent, nongovernmental panel led by former Supreme Court Judge Jacob Turkel, with foreign observers to remove any possible bias.

Israel’s Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu delivered a statement on Monday before the Turkel Commission, explaining the change in Israel’s policy towards the Gaza Strip and what really transpired aboard the Mavi Marmara, highlighting all actors involved.

Said Netanyahu, “Our soldiers faced a very real danger to their lives from brutal attacks, and acted in self-defense.  We made tremendous efforts to prevent injuries, but the IDF soldiers have the right to defend themselves. ”

He went on to explain “how dangerous an open sea lane to Gaza is for the security of the State of Israel. On one ship, the Karin A, Iran tried to send dozens of tons of weapons to Gaza. On another ship, the Francop, Iran tried to send Hezbollah hundreds of tons of weapons, approximately two-thirds of the total ammunition fired at Israel during the Second Lebanon War”

To read the Prime Minister’s full address to the Turkel Commission, click here.

By Michael B. Oren
Friday, August 6, 2010

Rarely have the lines in the Middle East’s sands been drawn so distinctly. Arrayed on one side is the peace-seeking camp that opposes militant extremism and favors direct talks between Israel and the Palestinians. On the other are the organizations, many of them surrogates for Iran, that work to undermine moderate governments and violently impede any effort for peace. continue reading…

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Who would have thought the President of Iran would reference Paul the Octopus in a speech demonizing the west. Very few actually believe that Paul the Octopus is a supernatural force, but that didn’t stop Mahmoud Ahmadinejad from claiming in a speech in Tehran that Paul the Octopus spreads “western propaganda and superstition.”

This coming from the leader of a country whose clerics infamously blamed earthquakes on women being dressed “immodestly.” Both examples clearly mix correlation with causation, but to claim a cephalopod in Germany is a source of evil is insane, even for Ahmadinejad. Then again, in 2007, Iran arrested 14 squirrels on “charges of espionage.”

“Those who believe in this type of thing cannot be the leaders of the global nations that aspire, like Iran, to human perfection, basing themselves in the love of all sacred values,” quipped Ahmadinejad in an ironic remark.

The above quote is disturbing because when Iran “aspires” to human perfection, that means limiting human rights in general, especially women’s rights. According to him, “sacred values” are the subjugation of women, torture, killing infidels, and building a nuclear arsenal.

If Paul the Octopus is on Ahmadinejad’s “hitlist,” no one is safe.

Peace is a vision that we all share, a vision of two states—Jewish and Palestinian living side-by-side free of the fear of violence and further territorial claims. But realizing that vision will require painful sacrifices. But while our arms are extended in peace  Israel is faced with another battle, namely  the escalating campaign to deny it legitimacy—to strip Israel of its right to defend itself, even its right to exist.

We are all familiar with the Goldstone report, the spurious charge-sheet compiled by a UN council that has condemned Israel more frequently than all other countries—Saudi Arabia, North Korea, Libya—combined; the report that found Israel guilty of war crimes and crimes against humanity even before it began its deliberations; the tribunal whose so-called judges included one who claimed that Hamas had only fired “one or two rockets” into Israel and that the Jews dominated British foreign policy. continue reading…

Photo: GPO

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden arrived in Israel for a series of meetings with top Israeli and Palestinian officials.

Two major issues on the agenda include Israeli-Palestinian negotiations and putting an end to Iran’s nuclear ambitions. “Progress occurs in the Middle East when everyone knows there’s simply no space between the United States and Israel,” stated Biden. “There is no space between the United States and Israel when it comes to Israel’s security and for that reason and many others addressing Iran’s nuclear program has been one of our Administration’s priorities. We’re determined to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons and we’re working with many countries around the world to convince Tehran to meet its international obligations and cease and desist.  Iran must also curb its other destabilizing actions in the region, well beyond their desire to acquire nuclear weapons and that is their continued support for terrorist groups that threaten Israel and I might add our interest as well. President Obama and I strongly believe that the best long-term guarantee for Israel’s security is a comprehensive Middle East peace with the Palestinians, with the Syrians, with Lebanon, and leading eventually to full and normalized relationships with the entire Arab world. It’s overwhelming in the interest of Israel, but it’s also overwhelming interest to the Arab world and it’s in our interest as well.  The goal is obviously to resolve the final status issues to achieve a two-state solution with Israel and a Palestine living side by side in peace and security. A historic peace is going to require both parties to make some historically bold commitments. You have done it before and I’m confident for real peace you would do it again”.

During his visit to Israel, Biden commended the Israeli moratorium on new building in the West Bank, and stated that on the Palestinian end there is a real commitment to reach an agreement.

In the coming weeks, Israeli and Palestinian officials will resume proxy talks that will eventually reignite official dialogue between the two administrations: “I appreciate the Administration’s effort to advance peace in the region,” added Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. “I know that this has been difficult and has required a great deal of patience, but I’m pleased that these efforts are beginning to bear fruit and we have to be persistent and purposeful in making sure that we get to those direct negotiations that will enable us to resolve this conflict.

“I look forward to working with President Obama, and with you and your entire Administration to forge a historic peace agreement in which the permanence and legitimacy of the Jewish State of Israel is recognized by our Palestinian neighbors and in which Israel’s security is guaranteed for generations to come.”

Recently, on a University of California campus, several dozen students repeatedly and brutally interrupted my lecture. Their goal was to undermine the freedom of expression and delegitimize the Israeli state. They did not achieve it. I finished my speech, but neither did I applaud, as did many others in the audience, when the protesters were arrested and led out of the hall. I had come to that university specifically to engage with those students, to exchange ideas—complex and controversial as those ideas may be—and not only to speak but to listen. I did not exalt in their arrest; rather, I was saddened. continue reading…