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Thwarted Abroad, Lord Leaves Labour, Ziklag


Israeli Intelligence Foiled 50 IS, Iranian Terror Attacks In 20 Countries

Times of Israel, July 9th 2019

Recap:

Israel’s Mossad intelligence agency supplied information that thwarted 50 attacks in 20 countries over the past three years.

The Context:

  • In June, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that Israel had used cyber-intelligence to help foil terror attacks planned by terrorist groups in dozens of countries including a potential Islamic State attack on an Etihad Airways flight from Sydney to Abu Dhabi. Etihad is the national airline of the United Arab Emirates. In response to the news, Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein said, “it appears that not only the citizens of Israel owe thanks to the Mossad [1].”

  • A key recipient of Israeli intelligence was Turkey, whose President Recep Tayyip Erdogan fiercely criticizes Israel. Intelligence used to thwart 12 attacks [2] was transferred to Turkey even during periods when diplomatic relations were severed. In 2016, Israel and Turkey formally ended the six-year rift that began when 10 Turkish citizens were killed in a confrontation with Israeli commandos aboard a ship aimed to break Israel’s naval blockade on Hamas in Gaza. Despite the official reconciliation, Erdogan has still likened Netanyahu to Adolf Hitler.

  • This week, the Palestinian Authority (PA) was held liable for civil damages for a series of terror attacks carried out mostly during the Second Intifada which can easily exceed $250 million [3]. The court held the PA liable not only for direct logistical and material support, but also on the basis of continued financial support of terrorist prisoners. Until now, Israeli courts have only held the PA accountable for attacks carried out by its employees [4].

Conversation Points:

  • What are the benefits in providing intel to overtly anti-Israel countries?

  • Should the PA be held liable for attacks it did not directly orchestrate?

  • Would countries on the receiving end of Israel’s assistance return the favor?

3 Lawmakers Leave British Labour Party Over Anti-Semitism

Cnaan Liphshiz, Jewish Telegraphic Agency, July 9th 2019

Recap:

Three lawmakers in the upper house of the British parliament left the Labour party over its escalating anti-Semitism problem. David Triesman, Leslie Arnold Turnberg and Ara Darzi announced their resignation on Tuesday and will stay on as independents in the House of Lords.

The Context:

  • The primary accusation by the three departing lawmakers was that party leader Jeremy Corbyn tolerates an “institutionally anti-Semitic” party. Corbyn, a far-left politician who was elected Labour leader in 2015, is under investigation for his handling of thousands of hate crime incidents. In 2009, Corbyn called Hezbollah and Hamas his friends, adding that Hamas is “an organization dedicated towards the good of the Palestinian people and bringing about peace and social justice.” Hamas is deemed by the US and UK as a terrorist organization.

  • Hundreds of Labour members, including 20 lawmakers, have left the party over what they called tolerance of anti-Semitism. Labour currently holds approximately 25% of the House’s 778 seats.

  • Triesman was personally targeted by Combat 18, a banned neo-Nazi terrorist group, when it orchestrated a 14-month campaign against him in 2004, breaking his windows and painting his walls with swastikas in 12 separate attacks [5].

  • Last year, 1,652 incidents, a 16% increase from 2017, were logged by the Community Security Trust, an organization that monitors antisemitism in the UK [6].

Conversation Points:

  • What explains the general atmosphere of intolerance and prejudice in England today?

  • Is Corbyn able to hide his anti-Semitic feelings behind the veil of being anti-Israel?

  • Is there a difference between being anti-Semitic and anti-Israel?

Biblical City with Links to King David Discovered in Southern Israel

James Rogers, Fox News, July 9th 2019

Recap:

Archaeologists in southern Israel discovered an ancient biblical city believed to be Ziklag. The site was discovered near Kiryat Gat and Carbon 14 tests date the site to the time of King David [7].

Context:

  • According to the Biblical narrative, Achish, King of Gat, allowed David refuge in Ziklag while fleeing King Saul. David departed Ziklag to be anointed King in Hebron [8].

  • 12 other sites in Israel were considered the possible location of Ziklag, although experts note that none of the sites had a continuous Philistine settlement as well as a settlement from the time of King David. The recently found site meets both criteria.

  • The excavation of the site began in 2015, and more than 1,000 square meters were exposed to enable the identification [9].

Conversation Points:

  • Will archaeological finds like this strengthen Jewish claims to the land in the eyes of its critics?

Notes:

  1. Revealed: Israeli Intelligence Foils 50 Terror Attacks Around World, Benjamin Kerstein, The Algemeiner, July 9th 2019

  2. MOSSAD FOILED 50 ISIS TERROR ATTACKS IN 20 COUNTRIES, INCLUDING TURKEY, Jerusalem Post, July 9th 2019

  3. PA LIABLE FOR SECOND INTIFADA TERROR ATTACKS, UP TO 1B. NIS IN DAMAGES, Yonah Jeremy Bob, Jerusalem Post, July 8th 2019

  4. Jerusalem court: PA must pay compensation for Hamas, Jihad terror attacks, Yael Freidson, Ynetnews, July 8th 2019

  5. Three Labour peers quit over handling of antisemitism cases, The Guardian, July 9th 2019

  6. Antisemitic incidents in UK at record high for third year in a row, Harriet Sherwood, The Guardian, February 7th 2019

  7. Archaeologists say they located city where biblical David found refuge, Marcy Oster, Jewish Telegraphic Agency, July 8th 2019

  8. Biblical city from time of King David discovered, Israel National News, July 8th 2019

  9. Archaeologists say they located city where biblical David found refuge, Marcy Oster, Jewish Telegraphic Agency, July 8th 2019


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