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Newsletter : 11fx0826.txt

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Cheney: I Urged Bush to Bomb Syrian Reactor, But He Refused

By IsraelNationalNews.com

Former Vice President Dick Cheney urged President George W. Bush to bomb the nuclear reactor Syria was building in Deir er-Zor in the north of country, but Bush refused.

The revelation comes in a book Cheney plans to release next week. The book, called "In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir," is critical of Bush on several foreign policy issues, says the New York Times, which quoted excerpts from the book in Thursday's edition.


Israeli Airstrikes Kill 10 in Gaza

By VOA News, IsraelNationalNews.com & Ha'aretz

Palestinian sources said the number of casualties from the latest round of Israeli airstrikes in Gaza has risen to 10 dead and at least 20 wounded. Israeli warplanes carried out air raids over the Gaza Strip on Wednesday and Thursday after Palestinian terrorists fired rockets into southern Israel.

The sources said at least one militant from the Islamic Jihad group was among those killed in the airstrikes.

Israeli forces and Palestinian murderers have traded attacks across the Gaza border for the past week, since terrorists crossed into southern Israel and attacked a bus, cars and security personnel on August 18. Eight Israelis were killed.

Pursuing the attackers, Israeli troops killed some of the assailants along Israel's border with Egypt's Sinai Peninsula. Five Egyptian officers were also killed, sparking outrage and anti-Israel protests in Egypt.

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu offered Thursday to hold a joint investigation with Egypt into the killing of the Egyptian officers. A statement issued by Netanyahu's national security adviser said military officials on both sides would set terms of the probe.

Egypt's military-backed government threatened to withdraw its ambassador to Israel to protest the killings. Egypt blamed the deaths on Israeli troops it said had violated the 1979 Israel-Egypt peace treaty.

Rocket fire from Gaza resumed as expected Thursday evening. At lest 17 Kassam rockets and mortar shells were fired from Gaza on Thursday evening exploding in open fields in Eshkol, the Sha'ar HaNegev Regional Council, and south of Ashkelon. The "Color Red" warning siren was sounded in the areas under attack.

Shortly after 7 pm another rocket was fired that struck near the Erez crossing. The IAF reported that warplanes struck a separate terror cell preparing a launch just before the Erez attack and scored a "precise hit."

Gaza sources Thursday confirmed that a terror cell launching mortar shells and Kassam rockets from the northern Gaza town of Beit Lehiya was hit by IAF fire. The sources say an air force missile hit a motorcycle carrying Salim Arabid and Ala Abu-Hiraf of the Islamic Jihad terror group's Al-Quds companies.

Shortly after 10 pm on Thursday, Terrorists in northern Gaza fired a rocket at the western Negev city of Sderot. The rocket hit an agricultural facility east of the city.

The Iron Dome missile defense system uses sophisticated decision-making software to make a split second determination on whether or not to intercept incoming rockets based on whether it will land in populated or built-up areas. It is unknown if it attempted to intercept the rocket at the agricultural facility or not.


Barak Nixed Proposal to Launch Preemptive Strike Ahead of Negev Terror Attack

By Ha'aretz

Shin Bet's chief recommended a preemptive move against the Popular Resistance Committees, but Defense Minister Ehud Barak feared it would result in a major clash in Gaza Strip.

Barak last week decided not to authorize a preemptive strike before the terrorist attack on the Egyptian border, a senior official in Jerusalem said. The head of the Shin Bet security service, Yoram Cohen, recommended a strike against a terror cell of the Popular Resistance Committees.

The senior official said the recommendation followed precise intelligence on an effort to launch a terror attack out of Sinai; the organization had warned about it for some time. The same intelligence was used several hours after the attack to kill the gunmen.

According to an Army Radio report, when the operational opportunity arose to strike at the terrorists, the Shin Bet recommended that action be taken. Nonetheless, senior defense officials and political leaders turned down the request, according to Army Radio.

In response, the IDF Spokesman's Office said that "the report suffers from substantive factual inaccuracies, and due to operational and intelligence reasons we cannot elaborate on the matter." The Shin Bet declined to comment on the report.

Claims have increased in recent days that Israel is wary of stepping up attacks on the Gaza Strip lest this stoke criticism from the international community, tension with Egypt and a larger conflict with Hamas. According to Army Radio, officials argued that the preemptive strike recommended by the Shin Bet would serve as a catalyst for the militants to carry out the attack.

Countering this argument, the Shin Bet argued that if the terrorists made it to the Sinai Peninsula neighboring Israel, it would be very difficult to prevent the attack.

Meanwhile, two days after telling Army Radio that Israeli and Egyptian officers would not carry out a joint investigation into the attack in the south, National Security Adviser Ya'akov Amidror has changed his stance. In a special announcement Thursday afternoon, he said a joint investigation would indeed take place.

The reason for the change probably stems from the anger that his statements to Army Radio have stirred in Egypt's Supreme Military Council. During the Tuesday morning interview, Amidror said no joint probe involving Israeli and Egyptian officers would take place into the incident near Eilat. But he said the two sides would carry out separate investigations and then compare their findings.

Amidror made the statement even though Barak had announced on Saturday that Israel sought to hold a joint investigation with Egypt into the incident. Earlier this week, the head of the Planning Directorate at the Israel Defense Forces, Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel, traveled to Cairo to discuss with the Egyptians ways of carrying out the joint probe.

The statements by the national security adviser were followed by a report Wednesday in the Egyptian daily Al-Masri Al-Yaum, which was highly critical.

"The Israeli side has not responded so far to our demand for a joint investigation and did not announce a timetable for the completion of the investigation," the daily quoted a senior Egyptian government official as saying. "If there is no joint investigation we will recall our ambassador from Tel Aviv."

Thursday afternoon the Prime Minister's Bureau issued an unusual statement in Amidror's name. The national security adviser stressed that "Israel agrees to hold a joint investigation with Egypt on the events of the terrorist incident on the way to Eilat that took place last week." Amidror added that the details would be determined between the militaries of the two countries.

Explaining the reason for the two versions, the Prime Minister's Bureau said that only during the past 24 hours had a final decision been made on a joint investigation.


Ahmadinejad: Iran is Determined to Eradicate Israel

By DPA

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said that Iran was determined to eradicate Israel, ISNA news agency reported Thursday. "Iran believes that whoever is for humanity should also be for eradicating the Zionist regime (Israel) as symbol of suppression and discrimination," Ahmadinejad said in an interview with a Lebanese television network, carried by ISNA.

"Iran follows this issue (the eradication of Israel) with determination and decisiveness and will never ever withdraw from this standpoint and policy," the Iranian president added in the interview with the Al-Manar network.

The remarks by Ahmadinejad came one day before the annual anti-Israeli rallies named Quds (Jerusalem) Day, which are held nationwide in Iran on the last Friday of the fasting month of Ramadan.

Ahmadinejad on Monday said that Iranians and Muslim nations worldwide should hold Quds rallies and show their willingness to dispose of this "infectious tumor and this regime full of rascality."

The Iranian president provoked international condemnation in 2005 when he said that Israel should be eliminated from the map of the Middle East and transferred to Europe or North America.


Israel Sinking into Religious-Fundamentalist Swamp

By Salman Masalha (Commentary)

Knesset member Avi Dichter (Kadima) sponsored, along with 40 other members from various parties, a new Basic Law that defines Israel as "the national home for the Jewish people." The proposed law includes a number of sections that, in the vernacular, piss me off.

It is becoming clearer and clearer that this Knesset, all of it, is the most populist in nationalistic terms, and the least fundamentalist in religious terms. Now they want to exchange the impossible mantra "Jewish-democratic" with something new.

It is clear that the intention of Dichter's proposed law is to deny the natural rights of Arab citizens in Israel. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu did well to explain the matter in a speech he gave in December 2003 at the Herzliya Conference: "We have a demographic problem. But it is not centered on the Palestinian Arabs in the territories, but on Israeli Arabs."

Even blunter words came from former Public Security Minister Gideon Ezra (Kadima): "We have Arab citizens in the State of Israel. This is our greatest problem. Finish with Gaza, finish with Judea and Samaria, and the biggest problem remains."

Support for this approach comes in the section of the new bill that revokes the official status of the Arabic language, the language of 20% of Israeli citizens.

It is well known that Israeli politicians very much love to take after Europe. So it would be appropriate to let you know how Europe behaves. Finland is a European country and quite advanced by all opinions. There is a Swedish minority in Finland which is 5% of the population. In this Finland, which was once part of the Kingdom of Sweden, no one can be a public servant if they don't speak Swedish.

Similarly, it seems the "greatest danger" has pushed the legislators to introduce another racist section into their proposed law, which allows religious and national separation to enable the existence of "separate community settlement," and it also has pushed lawmakers to sink further and further into the religious-fundamentalist swamp.

Israel is fitting into the region more and more. The proposed law adds us to the club of enlightened nations such as Iran, Saudi Arabia and Sudan. The law intends to make Knesset legislation and civil judges subject to Jewish jurisprudence and "Jewish tradition," in an attempt to establish Israel as a state based on unenlightened Jewish law - based on a Basic Law. In the term "Jewish tradition" is hiding a religious tradition of Jewish law.

Jewish tradition, like all other monotheistic traditions, includes a number of laws that can be described as moral abominations that completely oppose the universal declaration on human rights.

The frequent treatment of such questions does not testify to strength, but the opposite. The source of this weakness is the occupation of 1967. On one hand, this occupation has deepened via the "Zionist theft enterprise" called the settlements. On the other hand, the demographics between the sea and the Jordan River have not remained frozen.

Therefore, it is no surprise that the law was formulated in cooperation and at the initiative of the Institute for Zionist Strategies. This is to teach us that the Zionist mind continues to invent new ideas.

With a lack of foreseeable prospects for a national solution in Israel, the situation will reverse itself. The day is not far away that we will begin using the infamous Zionist language, but this time in reverse. This time we will start to speak of the "Jewish camp" or the minorities - the Jews of course. I will even go so far and introduce the phrase "honorable Jews." You have been warned.































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