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U.S. `Nuclear Umbrella' Against Iran

By IsraelNationalNews.com

The administration of President-elect Barack Obama will offer Israel a "nuclear umbrella" against the threat of a nuclear attack by Iran, according to a source close to the new administration, cited by the Ha'aretz daily.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is constantly talking about the destruction of the Jewish State. The source told the newspaper this week that the US will declare that an attack on Israel by Tehran would result in a devastating U.S. nuclear response against the Islamic Republic.


Livni: Arab Israelis' Future Lies 'Elsewhere'

By VOA News

Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Thursday that for Israel to remain a Jewish and democratic state, it must be one of two distinct national entities. She said Israeli Arabs must find their own national solution "elsewhere."

Israeli Arab lawmaker Ahmed Tibi said Livni must clarify if she intends to strip one million Israeli Arabs of political rights and transfer them to a future Palestinian state. Livni is vying for the post of prime minister in February elections as head of the centrist ruling Kadima Party.

Her main rival and opposition leader, Binyamin Netanyahu of the Likud Party, told foreign ambassadors Thursday that he favors continuing peace talks with the Palestinians, but added that the talks should focus on improving the Palestinian economy, rather than resolving borders and other core issues of the conflict.

Likud Party members elected a list of parliamentary candidates this week that includes several ultranationalist politicians who oppose concessions to Arabs. If Likud wins the most seats in the election, as opinion polls suggest, Netanyahu would return to the prime minister's job that he last held from 1996 to 1999.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said he is willing to work with any elected Israeli prime minister. He made the comment to the London-based Arabic newspaper Asharq Alawsat in an article published Thursday.

In another development, Israel allowed a truck to deliver $25 million in cash to the Gaza Strip from banks in the West Bank. Palestinian officials said the money would be used to pay the salaries of civil servants in Gaza.

Israeli authorities had suspended the cash transfers in October and tightened other sanctions on Gaza in response to renewed rocket attacks on Israel.

PA Revises History, Denies 1947 Partition Plan

By IsraelNationalNews.com

In a recent appearance on Palestinian Authority television, PA Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahmad Subh claimed the United Nations had not permitted the establishment of an Arab state in then British Mandatory Palestine in 1947. Subh's interview was translated by Palestinian Media Watch.

"In 1977 the UN General Assembly decided to restore the Palestinian people's esteem, following the historic injustice, which happened in 1947, when a 'birth certificate' was offered to one state instead of two states," Subh claimed. "One state [Israel] was permitted to be established, while the Palestinian state was not permitted to be established."

In 1947, with hundreds of thousands of Jews living in the British Mandate and millions more seeking homes, the UN offered a partition plan that would split the land between Arabs and Jews. Jewish leaders accepted the plan. Surrounding Arab states rejected the plan and attacked the fledgling Jewish state, causing a bloody war that ended with the Arab nations defeated and Israel established on most of the British Mandate territory.

Subh's interview is not the first time the Fatah-led PA based in Ramallah has made false claims about the history of the region, PMW said. "Since its establishment, the Palestinian Authority has been rewriting history in an attempt to create historical legitimacy for its demands for statehood, as well as justification for the terror and wars against Israel since before Israel's establishment in 1948," the group stated.


Arab Muslim Clerics: `Slaughter the Jews on the Land of Hebron'

By IsraelNationalNews.com

The head of the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan called on Palestinian Authority Arabs to formally start a third intifada by carrying out suicide bombing attacks to "slaughter the Jews" in Israel.

The harangues by Arab Islamic clerics that aired on the Lebanese Hizbullah terrorist-linked Al-Manar and Palestinian Authority-run Al-Aqsa television networks from December 3-5 were translated by The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) in a report published this week.

Several clips were translated. The first was by far the most fiery, a rant by Sheik Himam Sa'id, Supreme Guide of the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan.

"Oh noble Gaza, raise your head high," he screamed into the microphone, panting heavily. "You have made the Muslims raise their heads high. And you, people of Hebron - you are now waging a war against the Jews. You are well-versed in this. We saw how, on a day in 1929, you slaughtered the Jews in Hebron. Today, slaughter them on the land of Hebron. Kill them in Palestine. Arise, oh people of Palestine, all the people of Palestine - arise in defense of your Al-Aqsa Mosque, arise in defense of Nablus and Hebron. Arise and face the [PA] Preventive Security forces. Fear them not, for they are rabbits. They are wolves, so fear them not, oh lions," he exhorted.

"Oh young men, what will you say to the Jordanian government?" he continued. "Expel the Jewish ambassador from Amman. Amman is pure, and the Jewish ambassador must not defile its soil. Recall the Jordanian ambassador from Palestine. Only mujahedeen should be in Palestine - not ambassadors, not ministers, or any representative of this nation. Do not recognize the ambassador of this nation in Palestine. Palestine is the land of Jihad, of sacrifice, and of preparation."

The Jordanian cleric also had harsh words for the economic benefit that Israeli Arabs have reaped by their citizenship in the Jewish State, and the financial rewards enjoyed by Jordan as a result of its peace treaty with Israel.

"We say to this government: Stop normalization with the Jews. Stop all imports and exports with the Jews. Our markets are full of Jewish vegetables and Jewish fruits. Traders who bring these fruits and vegetables are traitors, collaborators. Tell them this. Make them hear our voice. The position of the religious scholars is that anyone who trades with the Jews is a traitor and collaborator," declared the cleric.

The second clip was a discourse by Husan Abdallah, representative of the Lebanese Association of Islamic Scholars, was no less vitriolic despite the soft-spoken manner in which it was delivered. "The truce with the Zionist entity is meaningless," he explained quietly. "Let pure bodies blow up again in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv and in all the cities of occupied Palestine…" The Lebanese scholar also tried to persuade Egyptians to "show an act of violence, even if they go to jail, even if they die – they will be martyrs for the sake of Allah."

A third message was broadcast by Osama Hamdan, the Hamas representative in Lebanon, who said bluntly, "Our goal is to liberate all of Palestine, from the river to the sea, from Rosh Hanikra to Umm Al-Rashrash [Eilat]. From Gaza, gentlemen ... We do not want a state 364 square kilometers in size, nor do we want a state for which we had to beg at the negotiating table. Such a state will never come to be. What we want is a free state, which maintains its dignity, 27,000 square kilometers in size - the size of Palestine in its entirety."


I'm Still Waiting for You, Rivki

By Chani Lifshitz

Chani Lifshitz, Chabad representative in Katamandu, Nepal, wrote a letter to her close friend, Rivka Holtzberg, following the tragedy in Mumbai. Lubavitch.com presents a translation from the Hebrew that appeared in the Israeli paper, Yediot Achronot.

The tears burn my hands. My heart is torn into small pieces. The screen is a blur. Yet I write, because you asked. After all, when did we ever say no to each other? My Messenger is open, as usual. Yours suddenly went blank. Where are you, Rivki? I'm waiting for you to connect.

It's been three days since we last spoke, and for us that's like forever. I began the morning with you, I ended the day with you, and I have so much to tell you. Where are you, Rivki? You can't suddenly disappear on me. This is not what we agreed upon. We're supposed to be together in this. You and I. It can't be that you have forgotten. You never forget.

Four hours after we spoke for the last time, my husband, Chezki, quietly woke me. "Don't panic, but . . . something happened in India," he whispered gently, knowing the special bond between us. "Something is happening in Bombay . . . let's check if they're all right."

The stars studded the night sky while I left a message on your answering machine every hour on the hour. Dawn rose between the narrow lanes and with it the worry. Drops of dew coursed down my window and my messages cried and pleaded together with them ("Rivki, answer me, please. Answer the phone. I don't want anything to happen to you. Please.") It is inconceivable that you fell at your post. You are stronger then them all.

In the morning I made you a cup of jasmine tea with spearmint leaves, the tea that you love. I waited for you to connect to the Messenger, so that we could have coffee and a croissant together in front of the screen, as we've doing for the last four years. A sort of private virtual joke. You prepare the morning pastry on a plate, with a detailed description of taste and texture. And always something different: one day apple pie, one day jelly cookies with cream. I prepare the drinks. In the summer I would offer you fruit juices and in the winter I would roll tea leaves from Dodover Square and Geiyah Bazaar market.

I'm waiting for you with the tea, Rivki. Waiting for your cake. I want to taste your sweet chocolate muffins, because I have this very bitter taste in my mouth. I am sure that you would come outside to check what is it that happened near your Chabad House last night? But you're not coming, Rivki, and your tea is getting cold…

Yesterday evening when we spoke you told me that tomorrow you have a quiet day, no special events, and if I didn't mind we'll discuss possible colors for the upstairs rooms of the Mumbai Chabad House. I thought about it a lot and I have a color that might be right. I know that every few minutes you will interrupt our conversation and ask Gabi what he thinks and if he has another idea. That's how it is between you--everything is done together.

So I sat and waited for you, Rivki, all day long. Because you always keep your word. I made you another cup of tea and the steam burned my eyes, my soul. Remember how we would laugh and say that our lives in India and Nepal were like a movie? Nothing can surprise us anymore. "Everything's possible," the locals say, nodding their heads in a circular motion. On any given day we meet someone who is a little lonely, someone who is hurting, someone who wants to hear a friendly word and a woman who needs a warm embrace. Our shlichus is never boring, not even for a second, right Rivki? This is an enchanted place--everything is possible, right?

Everything, besides this. It is simply unthinkable, a sheer impossibility! It is inconceivable that you fell at your post. You are stronger then them all. Streams of pain washed over you daily, as I know only too well. During the day you would share your life story with me--and at night I would cry your tears. I cried, you comforted. Absurd, isn't it? But you were rock-solid. No storm could knock you over. Nothing could stop you. So where are you, Rivki? Why aren't you coming out?

I was sure that you would come out. That they too would fall under the spell of your charm. That you would hurry up the stairs before them, thin and wisp-like, and with your soft baby face would offer them a plate of hot soup. You would tell them that Chabad House has nothing to do with whatever they are after, and that you don't mind contacting the authorities, if that's what they want...but maybe they should leave because it's getting late and Moshe'le just fell asleep. "Even without this ruckus it's not easy to put him asleep at night," you would say in your slightly hoarse voice, and "here are cheese blintzes for the road," and "make sure to stuff them deep inside the knapsack, so that they don't fall out."

How is it that you didn't come out, Rivki?!

We have received dozens of calls and hundreds of emails since the attack, all of them trying to console and comfort, and at the same time asking: What will be? What do we do now? This is the question being asked by 3,500 of the Rebbe's shluchim worldwide. I know what you would have answered, Rivki. You would have told us to take the massive outpouring of empathy and unity that was created in the world and draw from it as much strength as possible for the coming days.

Despite the profoundest of pain, I promise to try, Rivki.

'Anti-Semitic' Sunflower Seed Packages Sold in Brooklyn

By YnetNews.com

A Russian food chain in Brooklyn stocked and sold dozens of packages of roasted sunflower seeds featuring a caricature of a greedy and sinister-looking Jew wearing a skullcap on the label, Ynet learned.

The Cyrillic letters on the left of the label read, "Shalom, from Israel," while the right side employs a slang phrase meaning "spit them out everywhere," alluding to "dirty Jews."

The packages drew the ire of Brooklyn's Jewish community, prompting the food chain's owners, the Shnayder family, to pull the packages from the shelves in all four of Net Cost Market's Brooklyn locations.

Net Cost Market describes itself as the "Costco of the ethnic Eastern European market," and offers a wide variety of imports from all over Eastern Europe. The roasted sunflower seeds are produced in the Former Soviet Union by Kremlin Kitchen.

Amos Hermon, head of the Jewish Agency's Anti-Semitism Task Force said this was not the fist case in which anti-Jewish symbols were used by Russians. "What we see here is the use of the same designs that were used in Nazi Germany and Eastern Europe prior to and during World War Two," he said. "The manufacturer made a conscious decision to try and invoke anti-Semitic feelings, thinking it would boost sales."


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