Statement comes ahead of UN report, which is expected to accuse Israel of war crimes
by, Abraham Rabinovich | The Washington Free Beacon
JERUSALEM—A former commander of the German army and 10 other former generals and officials from four continents who investigated the human rights aspect of last summer’s war in Gaza have concluded that Israel scrupulously adhered to the laws of war.
Their statement was released over the weekend, in anticipation of the release by the UN’s Human Rights Council (UNHRC) of a report, which is expected to accuse Israel of war crimes in the conflict.
The foreign group was led by Gen. Klaus Naumann, former chief of staff of the Bundeswehr and former chairman of NATO’s Military Committee. The panel conducted a week-long fact-finding visit to Israel last month at the initiative of a pro-Israel group.
“Each of our own armies is committed to protecting civilian life during combat,” the report, which was submitted to the UNHRC, said. “None of us is aware of any army that takes such extensive measures as did the IDF last summer to protect the lives of the civilian population in such circumstances. Israel not only met international standards in observing the laws of armed conflict but in many cases significantly exceeded that standard.”
Acknowledging that some Palestinian deaths were caused by Israeli errors of judgment, the panel of generals declared that Palestinian militants “as the aggressors and the users of human shields” were responsible for the overwhelming majority of civilian deaths in Gaza.
Israel regards the UNHRC, which has frequently targeted Israel, as “obsessively” hostile and has refused to cooperate with its current investigation.
In a preemptive move, the Israeli government published its own report on the war Sunday, which noted that 4,000 of the 4,500 rockets and mortar shells fired by Hamas and other militant groups from Gaza during the 50 days of fighting were aimed at civilian targets. Hundreds of these rounds, it said, were fired from civilian compounds containing schools, mosques, and UN facilities.
The 250-page report said the Israeli army was unique in assigning military lawyers to the combat commanders “to ascertain that they act in accordance with international law.” Firing missions are scrapped if the lawyers deem that they are illegal targets as defined by the Law of Armed Conflict.
Militants in Gaza are accused by Israel of deliberately basing themselves in residential areas. Israel has made it a practice during its recurring wars with Hamas to telephone residents of houses that are targeted and advise them to evacuate immediately.
Some 2,100 Gazans and 70 Israelis were killed in the fighting. Israel claims 44 percent of identified Palestinian casualties were militants. The Palestinians claim the overwhelming majority of those killed were civilians.
The report, drawn up by the Israeli Foreign Ministry, said Hamas’ strategy was to deliberately draw the fighting into urban areas both for tactical advantage and for the political gain from civilian casualties.
The UNHRC is expected to release its report this week. The original head of the committee’s investigation, Canadian legal expert William Schabas, resigned after Israel accused him of anti-Israel bias. His replacement is American jurist Mary McGowan Davis.
ISIS Threatens to Declare War on Hamas
by, Cynthia Blank | Arutz Sheva
Tensions between terror organizations Islamic State in Iraq and Syria and Hamas in Gaza have intensified in recent days, Maariv reported on Wednesday.
Clashes apparently spiraled after Hamas demolished a mosque used by members of the Salafist organization called “Islamic State Supporters in Beit Al-Maqdis” as well as arrested nearly 40 of its members.
Reportedly, Hamas arrested the dozens of Salafists as well as several prominent Islamic State preachers in Gaza, following the Islamic State takeover of Palestinian refugee camp Yarmouk, near Damascus.
“After ISIS beheaded several Palestinian, including a senior Hamas official,” inside the camp in April, the International Business Times reported, “the Palestinian Intelligence agency swore that it would avenge the killing of its personnel.”
In response, the ISIS-affiliated group in the Hamas-controlled coastal enclave called Hamas “worse than the Jewish and American occupiers” and issued a proclamation on Monday giving Hamas 72 hours to release its detained members.
If not, the “ISIS Supporters in Beit Al-Maqdis” asserted they would kill, one by one, all of Hamas’ personnel.
Claiming it has data on all the names and addresses of those working for the Palestinian Intelligence Agency, the pro-ISIS group in Gaza went on to accuse Hamas of working for Israeli forces.
Despite concern of an escalation, Hamas has tried to reassure the Gazan public that the security situation is stable. “Residents can tour Gaza without need of a weapon from Rafah to Beit Hanoun,” Interior Ministry spokesman Iyad al-Bazam wrote on his Facebook page.
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Report: ISIS Mobilizing in Gaza
by, Uzi Baruch | Arutz Sheva
Palestinian Authority (PA) security officials have warned that Islamic State is acting to mobilize in Gaza to serve as an extension of its activities in the Sinai Peninsula.
Journalist Gal Berger reports that the PA knows of eight extremist Salafi groups operating in Gaza in recent years with several hundred members total.
Many of these are former Hamas members who left the organization after it decided to participate in PA “elections” and to integrate into the Palestinian government.
Salafi activity is being compartmentalized into different roles in Gaza and funding is allegedly coming from within.
Hamas sources stated that there are several dozens of Salafi activists who have pledged sole allegiance to ISIS, but added that they “do not pose a serious threat” to stability in the region.
Berger noted that a senior member of the Salafi movement in Gaza, named as Adnan Mitt, was arrested last month. Mitt is a former Hamasmember.
Last week, sources stated to Maariv that ISIS is threatening to declare war on Hamas and take over Gaza from within.
The Infiltration of HAMAS Terrorist Organization on America’s College Campus’..
by, Adam Kredo | The Washington Free Beacon
Anti-Israel activists at the University of California, Davis heckled Jewish students and shouted “Allahhu Akbar” at them during a vote last week on a resolution endorsing a boycott of the Jewish state, according to video of the event obtained by the Washington Free Beacon.
Video courtesy of: FNC & Steven Laboe
The commotion erupted late Thursday evening as pro-Israel students attempted to counter a student government resolution to divest from Israel as part of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement.
Activists waving Palestinian flags shouted at the Jewish and pro-Israel students as they left the meeting room ahead of an eight to two vote in favor of the divestment resolution, which is part of a larger movement by anti-Israel groups to attack Israel and pro-Israel students on campus.
“Allahhu Akhbar!” a large group of activists shouted in unison as the pro-Israel students filed out of U.C. Davis’ meeting room, according to video provided by a member of Aggies for Israel, a pro-Israel student group at Davis.
Following the vote, which was championed by the pro-Hamas group Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP), unknown vandals spray-painted swastikas on a fraternity house belonging to the Jewish AEPi organization.
Additionally, Azka Fayyaz, a member of the U.C. Davis student senate, posted on her Facebook page a triumphant message following the vote: “Hamas & Sharia law have taken over UC Davis.”
Azka Fayyaz, leader of the ‘BDS Nazi Campus Movement’ known as; Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) at UC Davis. Azka Fayyaz on facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/smartazkanbe?fref=ts
Pro-Israel activists involved in the battle said the series of events at U.C. Davis highlight the danger posed to campuses by the BDS movement.
“BDS activism, anti-Semitism, swastikas, celebration of terror—these things are found together,” said Noah Pollak, executive director of the Emergency Committee for Israel. “The U.C. Davis administration should be deeply alarmed that a member of the student senate has openly endorsed Hamas, a U.S.-designated terrorist organization whose charter calls for the murder of Jews worldwide.”
Johanna Wilder, a StandWithUs Pacific Northwest campus coordinator, said that the Facebook postings by student senator Fayyaz highlight SJP’s ongoing promotion of hatred.
“This demonstrates the dishonesty and hypocrisy of divestment campaigns on campus,” Wilder said in a statement following the vote. “They claim to be about social justice and human rights, but this student senator’s statement revealed SJP and the BDS movement’s real agenda.”
“A racist group, Hamas is designated a terror organization by the U.S. and many other governments and its charter is sworn to the destruction of the state of Israel,” she said.
Members of the AEPi fraternity also took note of the proximity between the BDS vote and the defacement of their home.
“Our U.C. Davis AEPi fraternity house was tagged with two swastikas, coming 24 hours after the deeply troubling actions on campus coming from those seeking to delegitimize Israel and her people,” a group of AEPi leaders and alumni members said in a joint statement released after the anti-Semitic attack.
U.C. Davis leaders said the administration fully opposes divestment from Israel.
Last weeks’ vote “does not reflect the position of U.C. Davis or the University of California system,” U.C. Davis Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi said in a statement. “The investment policy for the University of California system, including U.C. Davis, is set by the U.C. Board of Regents.”
“The Board and Office of the President issued a statement regarding student resolutions that urge the Board to divest from companies doing business with Israel,” Katehi said. “The statement reiterates the Board’s position that this type of call to action will not be entertained.”
When asked about the controversial comments made by the student senator, a U.C. Davis spokesman said, “statements by individuals do not reflect a position of the university or the university community as a whole … U.C. Davis is built on a foundation of tolerance and inclusion, and we have an obligation to treat each other with respect and dignity even when we disagree.”
He said Davis police are investigating the vandalism incident at AEPi.
“U.C. Davis Student Affairs and U.C. Davis police have met with the fraternity to offer support and advice,” the spokesman said. “It is being investigated as a hate crime.
Israeli/Jewish Students and Supporters Walk-Out in Protest of BDS: (Excellent Speech)
Video courtesy of: 2kbodya
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Report: Anti-Semitism Soaring on U.S. College Campuses
by, Adam Kredo | The Washington Free Beacon
Anti-Semitism on college campuses is growing, with more than half of Jewish students claiming they have witnessed or been subjected to some form of anti-Jewish harassment, according to a new report by a leading human rights organization.
With college campuses across the country acting as a hotbed for anti-Israel activism, Jewish students say they are beginning to be targeted on the basis of their religion, according to a nationwide survey conducted by Trinity College and the Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law.
The survey, which interviewed 1,157 self-identified Jewish students at 55 U.S. colleges, found that 54 percent experienced or witnessed “anti-Semitism on campus during the first six months of the 2013-2014 academic year.”
Perhaps most surprising, the report found evidence of anti-Semitism across the country, a finding “strongly suggesting anti-Semitism on campus is a nationwide problem,” according to the report.
The findings come as anti-Semitic incidents rise across the globe, with Jewish citizens being targeted for attack by Islamic extremists and far-right neo-Nazis.
This has been accompanied by several high-profile episodes on college campuses in which Jewish students have been subjected to harassment and, in some cases, violence.
The Trinity College researchers who performed the study said they were surprised by the findings.
“The patterns and high rates of anti-Semitism that were reported were surprising,” said Ariela Keysar, an associate research professor at Trinity who co-wrote the report with her colleague Barry Kosmin. “Rather than being localized to a few campuses or restricted to politically active or religious students, this problem is widespread. Jewish students are subjected to both traditional prejudice and the new political anti-Semitism.”
The survey was conducted prior to last year’s conflict in the Gaza Strip, when incidents of anti-Semitism spiked globally.
“That a majority of Jewish students felt that they had suffered or witnessed incidents of anti-Semitism on the college campus in only one academic year was an unexpected finding which requires very serious investigation,” the report states.
Anti-Semitic incidents were found to be underreported, meaning that the number of episodes occurring on campus could be higher than found in the survey.
Of those who reported having “witnessed or personally been subjected to anti-Semitism,” 29 percent said it had occurred at the hands of another student.
Ten percent said it occurred in a club or society on campus, while 3 percent said the anti-Semitism was a product of the “university administrative system,” according to the report.
“The data shows that few types of Jewish students are immune from or can avoid this problem on today’s campuses,” according to the report.
The report further found that students identifying as liberal and as conservative both experienced anti-Semitism.
It also found the such treatment was experienced by students who do not overtly identify as Jewish by wearing a yarmulke or other traditional forms of observance.
“Membership in a Jewish campus organization such as Hillel, Chabad, or a Jewish fraternity/sorority raises the likelihood of reporting anti-Semitism,” the report states.
“The fact that members of [the American Israel Public Affairs Committee], a vocal pro-Israel organization, report the highest rate of anti-Semitism could be interpreted to support the notion that campus anti-Semitism has a political element,” it states. “Nevertheless, half of the more liberal-oriented ‘peacenik’ J Street members report anti-Semitism.”
This finding “belies the canard that campus anti-Semitism is perceived primarily by conservative or right-wing students,” the researchers concluded.
The report additionally found that anti-Semitism was reported at a higher rate among students at colleges in the traditionally liberal areas of the Northeast United States.
One student who anonymously responded to the survey said that anti-Semitism is often associated with liberal political groups advocating boycotts of the Jewish state.
“The divestment campaign and other anti-Israel campaigns on this campus are intertwined with rampant anti-Semitism,” the student was quoted as saying in the report. “After a widespread anti-Israel/anti-Semitic attack earlier this year the University issued a weak response. Jewish students … want to know that our University stands by us.”
The results in the United States are slightly higher than those found in a similar 2011 study conducted in the United Kingdom, where Jewish citizens often find themselves under attack from far-left groups.
Ken Marcus, president and general counsel for the Brandeis Center, said his organization often hears from students who “find that their experiences of anti-Semitism are not taken seriously.”
“This report gives substance and data to their experiences,” Marcus said in a written forward to the report. “The scope of this problem is greater than most observers had realized.”
“Kosmin and Keysar’s eye-opening findings should awaken authorities to the need to address campus anti-Semitism much more aggressively, comprehensively, and effectively than they are now doing,” he said.
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Crossing the Line 2: The New Face of Anti-Semitism on Campus
END RACISM, NAZISM, ANTI-SEMITISM and HATRED on AMERICAN COLLEGE CAMPUSES
BAN BDS and the SJP From Our Children’s Universities!
LET YOUR VOICE BE HEARD!
Let YOUR $$$’s Speak = Withhold Donations to Universities That Promote Intolerance by Allowing BDS and SJP Hate Groups on Their Campus’
Send YOUR Children to Universities That Promote Tolerance and Respect of Others.
TAKE ACTION NOW!
– Make a list of ALL of the Universities/Colleges in ‘YOUR’ State.
– Next, Contact each of them and ask if ‘…BDS and/or SJP have chapters on their campus..’
– Then, Contact ‘US’ and Provide the Results.
– Together ‘WE’ will take ACTION!
BE VOCAL – ACT LOCAL!
A general view of the rubble of a 13-storey residential tower, which witnesses said was destroyed in an Israeli air strike, is seen in Gaza City August 24, 2014. Photo courtesy of: Mohammed Salem/Reuters
IAF Surgical Strike on Hamas Command Center yields 13-storey building being dropped without touching any surrounding building
by, Nidal Al-Mughrabi & Jeffrey Heller | Reuters
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned Palestinian civilians on Sunday to leave immediately any site where militants are operating, one day after Israel took the Gaza war to a new level by flattening a 13-storey apartment tower.
Israeli aircraft first fired a non-explosive rocket at the building, a sign to residents to get out, before attacking it on Saturday. Seventeen people were wounded in the strike on the structure, which Israel said had housed a Hamas command centre.
Amazing Video of ‘Actual Strike’ on Hamas Command Center…
Video courtesy of: Newsworld
“I call on the inhabitants of Gaza to evacuate immediately from every site from which Hamas is carrying out terrorist activity. Every one of these places is a target for us,” Netanyahu said in public remarks at a cabinet meeting.
With no end in sight to fighting now in its seventh week, Netanyahu’s tough talk could indicate a move towards bolder strikes in densely populated neighbourhoods, even at the risk of raising more international alarm.
Thousands of homes have been destroyed or damaged in the conflict. Nearly 500,000 people have been displaced in the territory of 1.8 million where Palestinians, citing Israeli attacks that have hit schools and mosques, say no place is safe.
Israel has said Hamas bears responsibility for civilian casualties because it operates among non-combatants. The group, it said, uses schools and mosques to store weapons and as launching sites for cross-border rocket attacks.
Palestinian health officials say 2,108 people, most of them civilians and more than 400 of them children, have been killed in the Gaza Strip since July 8, when Israel launched an offensive with the declared aim of ending Palestinian rocket fire into its territory.
Sixty-four Israeli soldiers and four civilians in Israel have been killed.
WAR OF ATTRITION
Israel launched more air strikes on Gaza on Sunday, killing at least six Palestinians, medical officials said.
Palestinian militants kept up their rocket fire in what has become a war of attrition that has defied attempts by regional power Egypt to broker a durable truce.
The bombing on Saturday of Al Zafer Tower in Gaza City marked the first time in the Gaza war that Israel had brought down so tall a structure. It had housed 44 families.
It launched the attack a day after a mortar bomb killed a four-year-old Israeli boy. Israel’s president attended his funeral on Sunday near the Gaza border.
Egypt called on Israel and the Palestinians on Saturday to halt hostilities and return to talks. But there was no sign that negotiations, last held before a ceasefire collapsed on Tuesday, would resume any time soon.
The start of the school year has already been delayed indefinitely by the Education Ministry in the Gaza Strip, and Netanyahu said on Sunday that Israelis should be prepared for the war to continue after classes begin on Sept. 1.
At one U.N.-run school in Gaza where Palestinian families have been sheltering, children chanting “glory and eternity to our martyrs” stood in line for the national anthem, but no classes were held.
Scott Anderson, Deputy Director of Gaza operations for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, said although school has been cancelled, instruction could be provided by other means.
“It is very important that we use our satellite channel, our Internet active learning program, the computer labs and the self-help material – all these lessons we learnt in Syriaand they have proved to be very successful there,” he said, referring to remote schooling during Syria’s civil war.
Hamas has said it will not stop fighting until the Israeli-Egyptian blockade on Gaza is lifted. Both Israel and Egypt view Hamas as a security threat and are demanding guarantees that weapons will not enter the economically crippled enclave.
The Cairo talks had aimed to secure a lasting deal to allow reconstruction aid to flow into Gaza. The current conflict is the longest and deadliest between the Palestinians and Israel since the second Intifada (Palestinian uprising) a decade ago.
Israel also faced rocket fire from the north on Saturday.
Two missiles launched from Lebanon struck Israel’s Galilee. Lebanese and Israeli sources said it was not initially clear who was behind the attack, which caused no casualties or damage.
At least five rockets fired from Syria landed at various locations on the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, the Israeli army said. All fell in open areas. It was also not immediately known who launched them.
Late on Saturday, an Israeli air strike destroyed a commercial centre in the southern Gaza town of Rafah and three people were hurt, local medical staff said.
(Additional reporting by Maayan Lubell and Ori Lewis in Jerusalem and Sylvia Westall in Beirut; Writing by Jeffrey Heller; Editing by Gareth Jones)