Thursday, December 31, 2009

for Chicagoans

Lecture and Book-Signing
with George Gilder,
author of The Israel Test
Monday, Jan. 11 at 7:30 PM
Ezra-Habonim, the Niles Township
Jewish Congregation
4500 Dempster St. Skokie, Il 60076
Lecture is free to the public.
Books will be available for purchase for $15.
(list price is $27.95)
Private Reception with George Gilder
$50/person at 6:30 pm.
Become a co-sponsor
$100 single $150 a couple
Sponsorship includes Private Reception, signed
book (two signed books for couples) and
select seating at the lecture
RSVP to: Larry Brown
Larry@ (847)983-8803
Refreshments will be served.
In The Israel Test: Why Israel is the Crucial Battlefield for
Capitalism and Freedom Today (Richard Vigilante Books,
July 22, 2009), technology guru George Gilder looks at
Israel as it transitions into the twenty-first century and sees a
nation that, alongside the United States, is a leader of
human civilization, technological progress, and scientific
advance. “The reason America should continue to „prop
up‟ Israel,” he writes, “is that Israel itself is a crucial prop of
American wealth, freedom, and power.” We must defend
Israel not merely from any religious obligation (as many
often argue) but from a very practical need to defend the
same core values that have built and sustained the United
GEORGE GILDER is author of fifteen books, including
the international best-seller Wealth & Poverty, voted
by National Review as one of the most important
works of the twentieth century, and Microcosm,
selected by Wired as the second most important
technology book of the era. He is contributing writer
for Forbes and Wired, director of the Discovery
Institute‟s Technology Program, and a practicing
venture capitalist. He lives in Tyringham,
Massachusetts with his wife Nini.

Sunday, December 27, 2009


Thursday, December 24, 2009

Vayigash parasha

Christmas and Jewish dilemma

new video Chanaukah, Saturnalia and Jon Stewart

time to bomb Iran

NYT: Only one way to stop Iran
Thursday, December 24, 2009 6:31 AM

December 24, 2009

Op-Ed Contributor
There’s Only One Way to Stop Iran


PRESIDENT OBAMA should not lament but sigh in relief that Iran has rejected his nuclear deal, which was ill conceived from the start. Under the deal, which was formally offered through the United Nations, Iran was to surrender some 2,600 pounds of lightly enriched uranium (some three-quarters of its known stockpile) to Russia, and the next year get back a supply of uranium fuel sufficient to run its Tehran research reactor for three decades. The proposal did not require Iran to halt its enrichment program, despite several United Nations Security Council resolutions demanding such a moratorium.

Iran was thus to be rewarded with much-coveted reactor fuel despite violating international law. Within a year, or sooner in light of its expanding enrichment program, Iran would almost certainly have replenished and augmented its stockpile of enriched uranium, nullifying any ostensible nonproliferation benefit of the deal.

Moreover, by providing reactor fuel, the plan would have fostered proliferation in two ways. First, Iran could have continued operating its research reactor, which has helped train Iranian scientists in weapons techniques like plutonium separation. (Yes, as Iran likes to point out, the reactor also produces medical isotopes. But those can be purchased commercially from abroad, as most countries do, including the United States.) Absent the deal, Iran’s reactor will likely run out of fuel within two years, and only a half-dozen countries are able to supply fresh fuel for it. This creates significant international leverage over Iran, which should be used to compel it to halt its enrichment program.

In addition, the vast surplus of higher-enriched fuel Iran was to get under the deal would have permitted some to be diverted to its bomb program. Indeed, many experts believe that the uranium in foreign-provided fuel would be easier to enrich to weapons grade because Iran’s uranium contains impurities. Obama administration officials had claimed that delivering uranium in the form of fabricated fuel would prevent further enrichment for weapons, but this is false. Separating uranium from fuel elements so that it can be enriched further is a straightforward engineering task requiring at most a few weeks.

Thus, had the deal gone through, Iran could have benefited from a head start toward making weapons-grade 90 percent-enriched uranium (meaning that 90 percent of its makeup is the fissile isotope U-235) by starting with purified 20 percent-enriched uranium rather than its own weaker, contaminated stuff.

This raises a question: if the deal would have aided Iran’s bomb program, why did the United States propose it, and Iran reject it? The main explanation on both sides is domestic politics. President Obama wanted to blunt Republican criticism that his multilateral approach was failing to stem Iran’s nuclear program. The deal would have permitted him to claim, for a year or so, that he had defused the crisis by depriving Iran of sufficient enriched uranium to start a crash program to build one bomb.

But in reality no one ever expected Iran to do that, because such a headlong sprint is the one step most likely to provoke an international military response that could cripple the bomb program before it reaches fruition. Iran is far more likely to engage in “salami slicing” — a series of violations each too small to provoke retaliation, but that together will give it a nuclear arsenal. For example, while Iran permits international inspections at its declared enrichment plant at Natanz, it ignores United Nations demands that it close the plant, where it gains the expertise needed to produce weapons-grade uranium at other secret facilities like the nascent one recently uncovered near Qom.

In sum, the proposal would not have averted proliferation in the short run, because that risk always was low, but instead would have fostered it in the long run — a classic example of domestic politics undermining national security.

Tehran’s rejection of the deal was likewise propelled by domestic politics — including last June’s fraudulent elections and longstanding fears of Western manipulation. President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad initially embraced the deal because he realized it aided Iran’s bomb program. But his domestic political opponents, whom he has tried to label as foreign agents, turned the tables by accusing him of surrendering Iran’s patrimony to the West.

Under such domestic pressure, Mr. Ahmadinejad reneged. But Iran still wants reactor fuel, so he threatened to enrich uranium domestically to the 20 percent level. This is a bluff, because even if Iran could further enrich its impure uranium, it lacks the capacity to fabricate that uranium into fuel elements. His real aim is to compel the international community into providing the fuel without requiring Iran to surrender most of the enriched uranium it has on hand.

Indeed, Iran’s foreign minister has now proposed just that: offering to exchange a mere quarter of Iran’s enriched uranium for an immediate 10-year supply of fuel for the research reactor. This would let Iran run the reactor, retain the bulk of its enriched uranium and continue to enrich more — a bargain unacceptable even to the Obama administration.

Tehran’s rejection of the original proposal is revealing. It shows that Iran, for domestic political reasons, cannot make even temporary concessions on its bomb program, regardless of incentives or sanctions. Since peaceful carrots and sticks cannot work, and an invasion would be foolhardy, the United States faces a stark choice: military air strikes against Iran’s nuclear facilities or acquiescence to Iran’s acquisition of nuclear weapons.

The risks of acquiescence are obvious. Iran supplies Islamist terrorist groups in violation of international embargoes. Even President Ahmadinejad’s domestic opponents support this weapons traffic. If Iran acquired a nuclear arsenal, the risks would simply be too great that it could become a neighborhood bully or provide terrorists with the ultimate weapon, an atomic bomb.

As for knocking out its nuclear plants, admittedly, aerial bombing might not work. Some Iranian facilities are buried too deeply to destroy from the air. There may also be sites that American intelligence is unaware of. And military action could backfire in various ways, including by undermining Iran’s political opposition, accelerating the bomb program or provoking retaliation against American forces and allies in the region.

But history suggests that military strikes could work. Israel’s 1981 attack on the nearly finished Osirak reactor prevented Iraq’s rapid acquisition of a plutonium-based nuclear weapon and compelled it to pursue a more gradual, uranium-based bomb program. A decade later, the Persian Gulf war uncovered and enabled the destruction of that uranium initiative, which finally deterred Saddam Hussein from further pursuit of nuclear weapons (a fact that eluded American intelligence until after the 2003 invasion). Analogously, Iran’s atomic sites might need to be bombed more than once to persuade Tehran to abandon its pursuit of nuclear weapons.

As for the risk of military strikes undermining Iran’s opposition, history suggests that the effect would be temporary. For example, NATO’s 1999 air campaign against Yugoslavia briefly bolstered support for President Slobodan Milosevic, but a democratic opposition ousted him the next year.

Yes, Iran could retaliate by aiding America’s opponents in Iraq and Afghanistan, but it does that anyway. Iran’s leaders are discouraged from taking more aggressive action against United States forces — and should continue to be — by the fear of provoking a stronger American counter-escalation. If nothing else, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have shown that the United States military can oust regimes in weeks if it wants to.

Incentives and sanctions will not work, but air strikes could degrade and deter Iran’s bomb program at relatively little cost or risk, and therefore are worth a try. They should be precision attacks, aimed only at nuclear facilities, to remind Iran of the many other valuable sites that could be bombed if it were foolish enough to retaliate.

The final question is, who should launch the air strikes? Israel has shown an eagerness to do so if Iran does not stop enriching uranium, and some hawks in Washington favor letting Israel do the dirty work to avoid fueling anti-Americanism in the Islamic world.

But there are three compelling reasons that the United States itself should carry out the bombings. First, the Pentagon’s weapons are better than Israel’s at destroying buried facilities. Second, unlike Israel’s relatively small air force, the United States military can discourage Iranian retaliation by threatening to expand the bombing campaign. (Yes, Israel could implicitly threaten nuclear counter-retaliation, but Iran might not perceive that as credible.) Finally, because the American military has global reach, air strikes against Iran would be a strong warning to other would-be proliferators.

Negotiation to prevent nuclear proliferation is always preferable to military action. But in the face of failed diplomacy, eschewing force is tantamount to appeasement. We have reached the point where air strikes are the only plausible option with any prospect of preventing Iran’s acquisition of nuclear weapons. Postponing military action merely provides Iran a window to expand, disperse and harden its nuclear facilities against attack. The sooner the United States takes action, the better.

Alan J. Kuperman is the director of the Nuclear Proliferation Prevention Program at the University of Texas at Austin.

Obama picks extreme left winger as Jewish liason


U.S. official blasts Israel envoy's 'unfortunate' J-Street remarks

By Barak Ravid

Tags: Michael Oren, J Street

Remarks by Israel's ambassador to the United States, Michael Oren, against the liberal Jewish lobby J Street were "most unfortunate" according to Hannah Rosenthal, head of the U.S. administration's Office to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism.

In an interview with Haaretz in Jerusalem, where Rosenthal was the administration's envoy to the Foreign Ministry's Global Forum for Combating Anti-Semitism, Rosenthal, who once served on J street's board of directors, said she opposes blurring the lines between anti-Semitism and criticism of Israel.

It is not 1939," she said. "We have the state of Israel. We have laws in countries that are holding people accountable."


When Ambassador Michael Oren turned down J Street's request to be keynote speaker at its first annual conference, and chose not to attend, debate over the group, already intense in the American Jewish community, reached as far as Jerusalem.

J Street was established a few years ago as a new pro-Israel lobby to counterbalance the strong, veteran group AIPAC, considered to toe a more right-wing conservative line.

Under the motto is "pro-Israel, pro-peace," J Street began to promote issues like a freeze on settlement construction and a two-state solution.

While the U.S. administration embraced J Street, which lends its unqualified support to U.S. President Barack Obama, the Israeli government turned a cold shoulder to the group. Obama's national security adviser, General James Jones, gave the keynote speech at the conference, while Israel sent a low-level official, claiming that J Street works against Israel's interests.

Rosenthal, who also served on the board of directors of left-wing group Americans for Peace Now, said she believed Oren "would have learned a lot" if he had participated in J Street's conference.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009


[] [ht=
Carter: Grandson's race not reason for apology

Former US president denies apology to US Jews due solely to grandson's deci=
sion to launch political career

WASHINGTON - Former US President Jimmy Carter insists that his letter of ap=
ology addressed to US Jews published on Monday was not simply due to the fa=
ct that his grandson has decided to launch a political career and run for t=
he Georgia state senator.

The former president's grandson, Jason Carter, 34, an Atlanta-area lawyer, =
is considering a run to fill a seat covering suburban DeKalb County should =
the incumbent, David Adelman, be designated ambassador to Singapore.

Mea Culpa

Carter apologizes for 'stigmatizing Israel' / Yitzhak Benhorin

Former US president offers US Jewish community heartfelt apology for any co=
ntribution he may have had to Jewish nation's negative image

Full Story

News of the young Carter's political ambitions has led some to suspect the =
former president's motives behind his apology were insincere.

But Carter senior told the Jewish Telegraph Agency in an interview publishe=
d Tuesday that ethnic electoral considerations were not reason enough to re=
ach out to the Jewish community, although he did not outright deny that it =
was a factor.

"Jason has a district, the number of Jewish voters in it is only 2%," he sa=
id, chuckling.

The senior Carter, who is not a popular character in Israel, enraged the Am=
erican Jewish community in the past with various statements made in his boo=
k "Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid."

In the book, Carter blamed Israel for impeding the Middle East peace proces=
s via settlement construction, further claiming such a policy will lead to =
apartheid. The publication of the book caused 14 Jews to quit their jobs at=
the Carter Center in 2006.

Since then Carter has been trying to restore relations with the Jewish publ=
ic. He hoped to appear in synagogues or Jewish community centers to explain=
himself and apologize, but his efforts were rejected.

He therefore decided to publish his letter of apology in a Jewish news agen=
cy around the holiday season, in hopes of reaching the public.

In a statement following his grandfather's letter, Jason Carter said: "Whil=
e I was very happy to see my grandfather's letter, it was completely unrela=
ted to my campaign. The letter is a product of discussions with some of his=
friends in the Jewish community that have been going on for a long time. I=
, like many others, see this as a great step towards reconciliation."

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Just shows zou sanctions vis a vis iran are a joke-will never happen

The no’s, votes present, and not voting members can be found here: –none from Illinois.
Obama and Kerry slowing sanctions legislation push

President Obama meeting in the Oval Office on Oct. 21, 2009 with U.S. Sen. John Kerry, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, who is heeding an appeal from the administration to go slow on Iran sanctions legislation. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

President Obama meeting in the Oval Office on Oct. 21, 2009 with U.S. Sen. John Kerry, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, who is heeding an appeal from the administration to go slow on Iran sanctions legislation. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Unilateral U.S. sanctions against Iran are on track, Senate officials say, but taking the slow train.

Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, needs time to consider the bill, his spokesman, Frederick Jones, told JTA. Jones strongly refuted rumors that Kerry would keep the legislation from reaching the floor, although that is in his power as a committee chairman.

"We're working with the administration to reach a solution that achieves the minimum all parties" want, Jones said. "There's no hold, it's not dead, it's just they're anticipating the legislative process."

That means it's extremely unlikely the Senate will rush the legislation before year's end, as had been reported earlier, especially considering other pressing matters.

The go-slow approach takes some of the wind out of the version of the bill, the Iran Refined Petroleum Sanctions Act, that passed Tuesday in the U.S. House of Representatives version. Both versions target Iran's import of refined petroleum; the deleterious state of Iran's refining capabilities means it imports up to 40 percent of its refined oil, despite being a major oil producer.

It has become increasingly clear in recent days that the Obama administration wants to slow down the prospect of unilateral sanctions while it attempts to mass international support for multilateral measures aimed at forcing Iran to make its nuclear workings transparent.

The most pronounced language has appeared in a letter from James Steinberg, the deputy secretary of state, to Kerry's committee. The letter, Jones said, helped prompt Kerry's concerns about the legislation.

"We are entering a critical period of intense diplomacy to impose significant international pressure on Iran," Steinberg said in the letter, which was first leaked to Foreign Policy magazine. "This requires that we keep the focus on Iran. At this juncture, I am concerned that this legislation, in its current form, might weaken rather than strengthen international unity and support for our efforts. In addition to the timing, we have serious substantive concerns, including the lack of flexibility, inefficient monetary thresholds and penalty levels, and blacklisting that could cause unintended foreign policy consequences."

The pushback comes as many pro-Israel groups have lined up behind the proposed sanctions. One official of a group pushing hard for the legislation cautioned not to lose the forest for the trees -- the bottom line of the White House backing sanctions, now or in the near future, was good news. That Obama wanted tweaks to the legislation was to be expected, the official said.

Still, what exists now is a situation in which many major Jewish groups -- including the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations and the Reform movement -- are pushing hard for bills that Obama and Kerry would prefer to work slowly and carefully. Only Americans for Peace Now is publicly aligned with the administration in counseling changes to the proposed sanctions.

In his letter, Steinberg did not elaborate about his concerns, and Jones said Kerry has yet to articulate his concerns. But an analysis of the Senate bill points to specific areas where the broad criticisms Steinberg lays out in his letter would apply.

"Inefficient monetary thresholds," for instance, likely refers to a passage of the Senate bill incorporating language from an earlier version of the measure initiated by Sens. Evan Bayh (D-Ind.), Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) and Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.). The passage effectively would reduce the "trigger" to impose sanctions from $20 million in business per year with the energy sector to $1 million a year -- small change in the oil business and hard to track, hence Steinberg's allusion to its "inefficiency."

The "blacklisting" apparently refers to the bill's requirement that the administration report those entities -- individuals, companies or countries -- meeting the $20 million threshold every six months. (The threshold would remain at $20 million for blacklisting.)

Such reporting would have an inhibitive effect on the entities, even were President Obama to waive its provisions. President Clinton, for instance, consistently waived the last major Iran sanctions legislation passed in the mid-1990s, but the fact that the legislation was available to him inhibited companies from dealing with Iran.

Top administration officials have made clear in recent days that they are apprehensive of scaring away potential partners in multilateral sanctions with the threat of punitive sanctions.

"We want to create coalitions," U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said in a Dec. 10 interview with Al Jazeera when she was asked if the United States was nearing the point when it would impose sanctions unilaterally to persuade Iran to make its nuclear program more transparent. "We want to find common ground with people. There are many things we could go off and do unilaterally, as the prior administration certainly demonstrated. That’s not our chosen path. We would prefer to take some more time, to be more patient, to bring people together to make the case."

Clinton rebuffed claims that the United States and Europe had failed to persuade other major powers to make a common cause on the Iran issue, referring to the recent resolution by the International Atomic Energy Agency, the U.N. nuclear watchdog, condemning Iran for failing to cooperate with its inspectors.

"The vote that was accumulated condemning Iran, calling for Iran to act, was shocking to some people because it was so unified," she said. "It wasn’t just the United States. It was Russia, it was China and many other countries. That’s because we have spent time listening and working hard to create this common ground and these common interests, and we’ve done it out of a sense of mutual respect."

Clinton's spokesman, Ian Kelly, directly addressed the proposed bills.

"We want to make sure that whatever kind of package is being considered, that it’s the right kind of package," Kelly said in a briefing last Friday. "Any kind of pressure is going to be more effective if it’s implemented broadly and not simply bilaterally."

Representatives of the major powers -- the United States, Russia, Britain, France, Germany and China -- will meet before year's end to consider the next steps with Iran in the wake of its rejection of an offer to enrich its uranium to medical research levels in exchange for greater nuclear transparency.

On Dec. 11, the White House endorsed a statement issued by the Council of European Union, the EU's foreign policy arm, that warned of a "clear response" to Iranian recalcitrance, an allusion to enhanced sanctions.

"Iran's persistent failure to meet its international obligations and Iran's apparent lack of interest in pursuing negotiations require a clear response, including through appropriate measures," the EU statement said.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Miketz video

Friday, December 11, 2009

Videos to watch

If you have not watched this one
Hannukah Latke vs. Purim Homintaschen debate ...from a former national High School Debate Champion

Parasha Vayeshev
Vayeshev va'yeishev How was Joseph sustained ...
My Upcoming Holiday Videos
YouTube - Sukkot-Hannukah connection Jewu 244 ...

Menorah Hanukah lighting rabbi Jonathan Ginsburg jewu 4

Hannukah songs and blessings sung JewU 69

How to play Chanukah dredyl JewU281

Chanukah miracle needed today JewU305

Hannukah The real story JewU 31

Jews, Hanukah, and the Christmas dilemma JewU290

Hanukah message don't let the lights go out JewU 312

Our annual Chanukah party part 2 JewU307

Our annual Chanukah party part 1 JewU306

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Chicago George Gilder Jan 11 The Israel test

CAMERA, The Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America and Ezra-Habonim, the Niles Township Jewish Congregation Invites you to a private briefing and book-signing
with George Gilder,
author of the groundbreaking new book,
The Israel Test
Monday, Jan. 11 at 7:30 PM
Ezra-Habonim, the Niles Township Jewish Congregation
4500 Dempster St. Skokie, Il. 60076

Lecture and book signing 7:30pm
Reception with George Gilder and priority book signing 6:30pm
Reception includes hors d'oeurves and Israeli wine
Lecture is free to the public. Reception is $50
Individual Sponsorship available for $100 includes reception and a signed copy of George Gilder's book, The Israel Test
Couples sponsorship is $150 and includes reception for two and two signed copies of George Gilder's book
RSVP to Larry Brown, or (847) 983-8803
RSVP by January 7, 2010 for reception required
RSVP for lecture preferred
Walk-ins welcome for lecture

“The Isael Test spoke to me with unexpected power. Apart from being brilliantly, fiercely written,
Its merits lies in clarifying, in a totally new, secular, and intuitive way, why Israel matters.” – David Klinghoffer, The Jerusalem Post
“Gilder’s originality, plus the sheer force of his enthusiasm for the extraordinary virtues of the beleaguered Jewish state, sweep away the prevailing vitriol and make for a book that is nothing less than thrilling to read.” – Norman Podhoretz

In The Israel Test: Why Israel is the Crucial Battlefield for Capitalism and
Freedom Today (Richard Vigilante Books, July 22, 2009), technology guru George Gilder
looks at Israel as it transitions into the twenty-first century and sees a nation that,
alongside the United States, is a leader of human civilization, technological progress, and
scientific advance. “The reason America should continue to ‘prop up’ Israel,” he writes,
“is that Israel itself is a crucial prop of American wealth, freedom, and power.” We must
defend Israel not merely from any religious obligation (as many often argue) but from a
very practical need to defend the same core values that have built and sustained the United

GEORGE GILDER is author of fifteen books, including the international best-seller Wealth & Poverty, voted by National Review as one of the most important works of the twentieth century, and Microcosm, selected by Wired as the second most important technology book of the era. He is contributing writer for Forbes and Wired, director of the Discovery Institute’s Technology Program, and a practicing venture capitalist. He lives in Tyringham, Massachusetts with his wife Nini.
Join Our List as Organizational Co-Sponsors or Individual Co-Sponsors

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Parashat vayeshev

Friday, December 4, 2009

Crisis Spurs Migration to Israel WSJ Dec 3

Friday, December 4, 2009
Crisis Spurs Migration to Israel WSJ Dec 3
Crisis Spurs Migration to Israel


JERUSALEM -- Immigration into Israel and the Palestinian West Bank is surging after the financial crisis and economic downturn evaporated jobs elsewhere.

After years of a brain drain from the region, and despite the lack of a peace settlement, by the end of this month about 4,000 North American Jews will have immigrated to Israel this year, an increase of 33% over 2008 and the most in one year since 1973, according to Nefesh B'Nefesh, an organization that oversees and assists with immigration to Israel from North America.

Immigrants to Israel often have a longstanding desire to move, but the economic crisis has pushed them to make the jump this year, said Danny Oberman, executive vice president of Israel operations for Nefesh B'Nefesh. "The economy has a lot to do with it," Mr. Oberman said.

Why Israel must bomb Iran-because we are too gutless

December 3, 2009 4:00 AM

The War for 21st-Century Freedom
The Islamists are fighting for control of the world. We need a president who knows it.

By Barbara Lerner National Review online
Are you worried — like so many Americans after the Fort Hood massacre — about the growing threat of Islamist subversion and terror here at home? Worried, beyond that, about what we’re doing — or not doing — militarily in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iraq? Worried about the growing reach and power of Islamist movements in Europe and South America, as well as Asia, the Middle East, and Turkey? Worried about the military alliances Islamist governments are forging with their secular mirror images: socialist-god governments in places like North Korea, Russia, and Venezuela?

Then focus like a laser on Iran, now, because Islamists will score major victories in all those places and more if we fail to prevent the ruling mullahs from openly, triumphantly making Iran the world’s first Islamist nuclear power. The danger isn’t only Iran’s own catastrophic recklessness, once she gets the bomb, or the fact that all her Arab neighbors will respond by scrambling to go nuclear too. It’s also that Islamists everywhere — joined by growing masses of previously undecided Muslims — will see Iran’s success in achieving nuclear status the way Iran’s mullahs see it: as a historic defeat for the West, blasting open the gate to a 21st-century world where Islam rules and Christians, Jews, Hindus, and Buddhists are subservient or worse. Islamist ranks will swell, everywhere, as confidence grows that the Islamist side is the winning side, and victory is near.

Most Americans can scarcely imagine an Islamist-ruled world. Most Muslims can, and they respond in one of three ways. Moderate Muslims wholeheartedly reject the Islamist vision and the support for jihad that is inseparable from it; Muslim extremists embrace it, many with growing fervor; and a third group sits on the fence, waiting and watching. Constant politically correct reassurances that only a minority of the world’s Muslims support violence against us are based on the fantasy that only “Islamist extremists” do that; “moderate Islamists” don’t. In fact, there is no such thing as a “moderate Islamist.” All Islamists are extremists. It’s an extreme creed. Moderate Muslims do exist, millions of them, many bravely fighting against the rising Islamist tide, but they aren’t “moderate Islamists.” Moderate Muslims are anti-Islamist Muslims, who oppose the imposition of Sharia and all the oppressive baggage that comes with it. They are on our side — freedom’s side — and we should be on theirs. Instead, we mostly ignore them and fail to heed their warnings, reaching out to “moderate Islamists” instead, welcoming them into our critical institutions — as our military, aided by the FBI, welcomed Major Hasan.

When it comes to Islamists abroad, poll data make it clear that they are the overwhelming majority in the Middle East. Iran and Turkey were the two great Middle Eastern exceptions, as Islamism swamped competing ideologies in all the Arab lands. Iran may still be, if popular majorities in that once great nation were allowed free choice, but they are governed by an Islamist regime more despotic than any Persian shah, ancient or modern. Turkey, once the freest, most proudly westernized and progressive country of them all, is on the verge of the same sorry fate. If you doubt that, look again at the new Turkey, governed by an Islamist party since 2002, a Turkey that is right now preparing to embrace Iran.

Focus like a laser on Iran now, because we have only months — not years — to prevent Iran from blasting through that history-making gate. Don’t waste precious time on the pretense that negotiations and/or sanctions can save us. As John Bolton, Michael Ledeen, Rich Lowry, Andrew McCarthy, and a few other brave souls keep pointing out, we have been negotiating with Islamist Iran for 30 years now, offering the mullahs one sweet deal after another, and getting blow after blow in return. Even if — mirabile dictu — Iran signed an agreement promising to forgo nuclear weapons forever, it would be worth no more than the 1938 Munich agreement. Iran’s mullahs are fanatics, like Hitler, not rational criminals we can make a deal with, as we did with the Soviets. MAD — mutual assured destruction — worked, because the Russians weren’t mad.

As for sanctions, if there ever was a chance they could have worked, even in their most robust form — a complete blockade of Iran’s ports by America and the few allies who might have joined us — that chance is long gone…
That’s what we need to do, now — deliver a crushing blow to Iran’s Islamists — to begin to turn the tide in the war for the survival of freedom in the world. Religious freedom, after all, is inseparable from freedom itself, the freedom we enjoy because our fathers defended it with America’s full might, twice in the century just past. Tragically, the odds that we will rise to freedom’s defense again in the next few critical months are almost nil. Some in our military and Defense Department are struggling, against the odds, to speed up the delivery of Massive Ordinance Penetrators (MOPs) capable of destroying Iran’s deeply buried nuclear facilities, but they can’t supply our most critical lack.

Eight years after the bloody attack of September 11, 2001, we still don’t have a commander-in-chief willing to order pilots with MOPs into action. Eight years after 9/11, we still don’t have a president willing to face the scope of this war. Our military is the most formidable on the planet still, but we are forcing it to fight piecemeal wars, tied up in peacetime restraints, with murky goals. Eight years after 9/11, we still don’t have the president we need: a president who will rally the country behind our cause — freedom’s cause — and order our fighting men and women to do everything we must do for the victory we must have.

Discouraged? Don’t be. All is not lost, because those who love freedom have two great trump cards: the fundamental honesty and good sense of the American people, and the back-against-the wall courage of the Israeli people.

Let’s deal with the Israelis first, and face the facts. Israel is a small country; her six million cannot do what our 300 million can and must do. They cannot give Iran’s evil government the overwhelming death blow it merits. But they can forestall total disaster by doing enough damage to Iran’s nuclear sites to buy us a little time, and the odds that they will do just that in the next few months are at least 50-50. They have no choice, if they are to survive. Iran has made it clear to anyone who listens that she will use her nuclear weapons to wipe out Israel first, before she uses them against us, most likely in the form of a terrorist attack. If Israel does act to save herself — along with the home and heritage of the Judeo-Christian world — it will give us a second chance to do what we must do to save ourselves and what is left of the free world. That is what we must concentrate on now: how to rally the American people behind a new leader who will fight for America, and for the survival of religious freedom in the world.

How will Israel defend itself vs Iran?

Israel Readies Advanced Arms With Iran in Mind

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

JERUSALEM — With cutting-edge anti-missile systems and two new submarines that can carry nuclear weapons, Israel is readying a new generation of armaments designed to defend itself against distant Iran as well as Tehran's proxy armies on its borders.

Having failed to crush Hamas' firepower in its Gaza offensive last winter, or Hezbollah's in its 2006 war in Lebanon, Israel is turning to an increasingly sophisticated mix of defensive technology.

A system that can unleash a metallic cloud to shoot down incoming rockets in the skies over Gaza or Lebanon has already been successfully tested, according to its maker, and is expected to be deployed next year. The army is developing a new generation of its Arrow defense system designed to shoot down Iran's long-range Shihab missiles outside the Earth's atmosphere.

It has three German-made Dolphin submarines and is buying two more. They can be equipped with nuclear-tipped missiles which analysts say could be stationed off the coast of Iran. Israel says Iran, despite its denials, is trying to acquire atomic weapons. It has never confirmed its Dolphin fleet has nuclear capabilities, but senior officials acknowledge that commanders are fast at work devising a strike plan in case diplomacy fails.

The missile projects have their critics in Israel, who question their effectiveness and say they are too costly. And many Israelis would probably agree with U.S. former President Bill Clinton's recent warning to an Israeli audience that the country could achieve true security only by making peace with its enemies, who he said would always be able to improve their ability to attack.

"The trajectory of technology is not your friend," he said. "You need to get this done."

Under their overarching fear of nuclear annihilation by Iran, whose regime has repeatedly called for Israel's extinction, the more immediate threat is seen as coming from Iranian-backed Hezbollah and Hamas.

Israel's military believes Hezbollah has tripled its prewar arsenal to more than 40,000 rockets, some of which can strike virtually anywhere in Israel — a dramatic improvement over the short-range missiles fired in 2006.

Hamas has also increased its rocket arsenal since last winter's fighting, said a senior military official who spoke on condition of anonymity in accordance with army regulations. Hamas recently test-fired a rocket that can travel up to 60 kilometers (40 miles), putting the Tel Aviv area within range for the first time, according to Maj. Gen. Amos Yadlin, Israel's military intelligence chief.

Israel's defense industry says it is close to deploying Iron Dome, a system that will use cameras and radar to track incoming rockets and shoot them down within seconds of their launch. The system is so sophisticated that it can almost instantly predict where a rocket will land, changing its calculations to account for wind, sun and other conditions in fractions of a second.

Shooting down a missile is a bit like stopping a bullet with a bullet. But Eyal Ron, one of Iron Dome's developers, said his system will fire an interceptor that explodes into a cloud of small pieces which make it unnecessary to score a direct hit.

"It's a great advantage because to bring an interceptor to a target flying at incredible speed to an exact point is very hard," said Ron, a specialist at mPrest Systems Ltd., an Israeli software firm developing the system along with local arms giant Rafael.

He said recent tests in Israel's southern desert were successful, and a final dress rehearsal is expected in December before the system goes live next year.

While Israelis who have endured years of rocket fire from Gaza are sure to welcome Iron Dome, the system does not have wall-to-wall support.

"Maybe it will be good during times like this when you have 10 rockets, but not for a war. If you invest in such a system, I think you're going to go bankrupt," said Gabriel Saboni, the head of the military research program at Israel's Institute for National Security Studies.

Iron Dome is one part of a larger strategy that includes more tanks and dozens of new armored personnel carriers equipped with technology to repel anti-tank missiles.

The ultimate trump card is a nuclear arsenal Israel refuses to acknowledge but which no one doubts exists.

The strategy that became obvious in the Lebanon and Gaza wars was simply one of overwhelming force to deter further attack.

This policy appears to have bought Israel a fragile calm on both its northern and southern borders, but it has come at a heavy price.

The military brass are deeply concerned that international criticism of Israel's conduct of the Gaza war, including allegations of war crimes contained in a high-profile U.N. report, will tie their hands in the future.

Military officials speaking on condition of anonymity said large resources are going into developing increasingly accurate weapons, such as bombs that cause damage over a smaller area and noisemaking explosions that scare away civilians before real bombs are dropped.

Few expect the current quiet to last indefinitely, and muscle-flexing on all sides attests to the elusiveness of a peaceful Middle East.

Iran is conducting large-scale air defense war games this week designed to protect its nuclear facilities from attack. Israel recently moved warships through the Red Sea toward Iran, and three weeks ago the Israeli navy captured a ship, the Francop, that it said was carrying a huge cache of Iranian weapons bound for Hezbollah.

Last week Netanyahu boarded a Dolphin submarine and then the missile ship that led the capture of the Francop. He thanked crew members for seizing the haul and told them that Israel is Iran's first target, "but not the last" — reflecting his contention that Iranian ambitions are not just an Israeli problem.

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Tuesday, December 1, 2009

action alert

November 30, 2009

Dear Rabbi Ginsburg,

The House of Representatives is likely to vote on the Iran Refined Petroleum Sanction Act (H.R. 2194) before departing for their December break. The legislation contains sanctions curtailing Iran 's ability to import and produce refined petroleum, measures which could be implemented if Iran rejects U.S. overtures and continues to enrich uranium in defiance of five U.N. Security Council resolutions.

It is vital that the bill pass with overwhelming bipartisan support in order to demonstrate that the United States is serious about stopping Iran 's enrichment of uranium.

With time being of the essence, you can make an impact. Please contact your member of Congress and urge him or her to support this bill. In addition, please email the action alert below to your congregants and encourage them to contact their Representatives as well. The action alert can be viewed or downloaded as a PDF by clicking here.

You can do your part to stop the Islamic Republic's nuclear weapons program by asking your congregants, both in writing and from the bimah, to contact their member of Congress. For more information about Iran , please visit

Thank you in advance,

First Ivanka Trump and now Chelsea

It's official - Chelsea Clinton to wed Jewish boyfriend

Marc Mezvinsky (and Chelsea Clinton as well) were very influenced by his
favorite professor at Stanford, Arnold Eisen, now Jewish Theological seminaty chancellor.
By Haaretz Service and The Associated Press