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Believe it or not. There is a Palestine Olympic Committee. It is allowed to parade its political propaganda ploy of the fictional "Palestine" and "Palestinians" and also able to participate in the Olympic games.
According to the Olympic Charter, established by a Frenchman, Pierre de Coubertin, the goal of the Olympic Movement is to contribute to building a peaceful and better world by educating youth through sport, practiced without discrimination of any kind, and in the Olympic spirit, which requires mutual understanding with a spirit of friendship, solidarity and fair play.
One wonders how and why "Palestine" was able to parade, in an ongoing perpetual political propaganda ploy that there ever was an independent Arab "Palestine" nation or "Palestinian" people. The fact of the matter is that Arab "Palestine" is really Jordan, formerly called Trans-Jordan according to the British Mandate. Creation of a second Arab "Palestine" in the ancient Biblical and modern territories of Gaza, Judea and Samaria belonging to Israel and the Jewish people, would be a state of terrorism as well as a travesty of honesty, justice and morality; a historical revisionism.
So how and why does the international community legitimize and rationalize the participation of "Palestine" as a member nation state of the 2004 Athens Olympic Games when it has never ever been recognized as a state, not even by its biggest advocate and political mouthpiece, the Arab/Islamist-controlled United Nations [Against Israel]?
What sporting event will they participate in? The Shooting of Jews marathon? Bomb Making? Ethnic Genocide? Hatred? Incitement? Terrorism? Violence? If there were categories for these events then surely the Arab "Palestine" would take home the gold.
Yasser Arafat is very adept at taking home the gold. The "humanitarian aid" money given so generously by the international community, destined for clothing, education, food, shelter, goes directly to Arafat's own personal account to fund and support terrorism. By legal definition, someone is acting with "unclean hands" in their case and cause.
How about the sport of mass murder and mayhem?
The sporting events listed for the 2004 Summer games only include aquatics, archery, athletics, badminton, baseball, basketball, boxing, canoeing, cycling, equestrian, fencing, football, gymnastics, handball, hockey, judo, rowing, sailing, shooting, softball table, tennis, track and field, volleyball, weightlifting and running.
Which do you think "Palestine" will compete in?
In the opening ceremony parade, "Palestine", a small delegation, was led by flag-bearer Sanna Abubkheet. Arab "Palestine's" flag bearer, middle-distance runner Abubkheet, flashed the "peace sign" in the opening parade of political propaganda, according to the Canadian press. Unfortunately, the newspaper misunderstood the Arab "Palestinian" language. "V" isn't for peace in an Arab "Palestinian's" hand. It means victory. At the expense of Jewish blood and lives.
She will run in the 800m race in Athens. When she started training seriously in 2000, she ran in shorts and a t-shirt. Residents of the camp where she lived - where most women cover themselves in traditional robes - were furious and demanded she dress more modestly. She was pelted with sticks and stones as she ran. Abubkheet stated she recognizes that running for "Palestine is as much about politics as it is about sport," as reported by Reuters on May 18, 2004.
We can all recall the cold-blooded mass murder and mayhem that was the focus of the 1972 Munich Olympics, the massacre of eleven Israeli athletes. Or can we? If we didn't suffer from short-term memory loss, or more aptly, complete memory loss, we would never ever allow Arafat and his Palestinian Authority/Palestine Liberation Organization to participate in Olympic Games or in the United Nations.
The entire world has lost its moral compass in this terrible tragedy of justice. Should we give a stage to this actor when we legitimize the "Chairman of Terror" and his PA/PLO and give them publicity for their perpetual political propaganda?
We know the International Olympic Committee has a stringent policy and one mission is to protect its athletes. It even adopted a stringent "World Anti-Doping Code" as part of its code of conduct. How about the adoption of a "World Anti-Terror Code"?
The IOC has a drug-free policy. Apparently, it is perfectly clear that they do not have a terrorism-free policy. Might as well allow and have Osama Bin-Laden and Al-Qaeda in the 2004 Athens Olympic sporting events, to make the games more competitive.
Greece is not exactly Israel's best ally in the world. One of Greece's former athletes, a javelin thrower, a 45-year old mother, volunteered for the "Palestinian" team. The Athens Olympic 2004 web site said that Israel's capital is Tel-Aviv. In addition, it lists the continent Israel is on as Europe, so when someone goes to see what is in Asia, you do not find Israel on the list, but a fictitious country known as "Palestine."
That's not all. The official Athens 2004 Olympic web site clearly shows Greece's sympathy with terrorism, not democracy.
"Our thoughts are with Cyprus, Kosovo, Iraq, Palestine, and all corners of the world where there is a war going on or a people living under occupation. The Torch Relay gives us the chance to demonstrate our will for peace for all parts of the world where conflict is liable to flare up."
The only real and truthful "occupation" is the one under Arafat and his Fatah-led Palestinian Authority/Palestine Liberation Organization (PA/PLO) since 1964, when Egypt and Jordan were the "occupiers" of the disputed territories of Gaza, Judea and Samaria, which belong to Israel.
No "Palestine" or "Palestinians" should be able to utilize international platforms to perpetuate political propaganda ploys when they are nothing more than a past, present and future state of terrorism and terrorists, who lie and steal and violate human rights.
The world shows by actions not words that it supports the perpetual political propaganda of a fictional "Palestine" nation and "Palestinian" people, created solely for the annihilation of the only Jewish State in the entire world, and only beacon of democracy, freedom and human rights in a sea of corrupt dictatorships, human rights violators, ruthless repressive regimes and tyrannies in the bad neighborhood known as the Middle East.
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It becomes highly disconcerting when Kassam rockets directed at Sderot or other neighboring areas are reported by the Israel media as routine incidents. To accept such assaults on our civilian population centers with equanimity is to court disaster.
Two Israelis, including a child, have already been killed and others wounded. Not surprisingly, the inhabitants of Sderot are nervous and angry.
But we must not delude ourselves that this is a localized issue. The Kassam is a primitive short range rocket but there is every likelihood that in the near future, terrorists will obtain access to more sophisticated and long range versions which could threaten our major population centers.
The IDF response to date has been to extend its presence in Beit Hanoun which is adjacent to the large Jabalya refugee camp from where most of the launches originate. The intention has been to push the terrorists back beyond range and induce the local population to pressure the perpetrators.
This is unlikely to succeed. The terrorists understand that by operating out of refugee camps which include the most densely populated areas in the world, they inhibit the IDF from sending in soldiers or using air support to eliminate the rocket sites - an act which could involve the loss of many innocent lives. Besides, with the anarchy currently prevailing in the territories, paramilitary groups like Hamas reign supreme and are unlikely to be influenced to change their tactics by appeals from local inhabitants. Indeed, only a few days ago Hamas employed propaganda videos on TV to boast that they intend to intensify the rocket attacks.
There is of course an element of dejá vu. It took almost two years until our political leadership gave the IDF the green light to make incursions deep into the heart of the territories and eliminate the head of the snake by selective targeting of the leaders. Only after this drastic action was the terror infrastructure disrupted.
By then, however, it was too late. Hundreds of Israelis had been killed because the politicians held back, fearing the rabid reaction of an already hostile international community.
Today it would be morally and tactically wrong to again adopt a policy of restraint until such time as, God forbid, the Kassams inflict greater casualties.
Besides, there is little doubt that the situation will deteriorate unless the government enables the IDF to initiate more drastic remedial action. Indeed if our leaders procrastinate, it will reinforce the prevailing Palestinian view that Prime Minister Sharon's proposed unilateral disengagement is a retreat under fire and a victory for the terrorists. Not to mention that the separation fence which we fought so hard to create would become a meaningless farce if our enemies can shower rockets on us with impunity.
These should be no illusions. Irrespective of what we do or refrain from doing, the majority of the international community including the Europeans will inevitably show their true colors just as they did most recently by shamefully supporting the UN anti-fence resolution.
The reality is that today, on the international level, only the American Administration displays a public sensitivity - albeit a qualified one - that we have an obligation to protect our citizens.
Therefore it is they whom we must convince that the present situation is intolerable and that in the name of self-defense, Israel has no choice other than to escalate its response to the missile threat. And we must act immediately before the American elections, because it would be a particularly onerous burden on a newly elected U.S. Administration, Republican or Democrat, to be instantly confronted after taking office with a request for support on a dramatic escalation in military response.
We have a powerful case. Prime Minister Sharon has to persuade President Bush that the policy of unilateral disengagement which he, Sharon, initiated was particularly painful because he himself had been one of the pivotal sponsors of the settlements which had been approved by successive governments. He should also reiterate that Israeli settlement in the Gaza Strip did not displace any Palestinians but rather has transformed the arid desert lands into flourishing gardens.
In this context the Prime Minister should stress to the President that the major domestic criticism he faces is that his policy is hailed by the terrorists as an Israeli retreat and a victory for armed violence. It would thus be utterly intolerable for his government to stand by with folded arms while the terrorists continue to shower Israeli civilian centers with rockets. To acquiesce in such a situation would demoralize our people and thereby endanger our very future. Neither the Americans nor even the Europeans would even remotely contemplate tolerating such threats from neighbors to the life and limb of their citizens.
Therefore Sharon must inform Bush that unless the rocket attacks cease immediately he will be obliged to take drastic countermeasures including even a possible freeze of the unilateral disengagement program. But more importantly, even if the disengagement proceeds, he will announce that henceforth every time a rocket lands on Israel's soil the IDF will respond harshly. It will first identify the launching location, warn the civilians in the area to immediately evacuate, and then demolish the focused area. It must be stressed that by deliberately operating from residential areas in which civilians are used as shields, the responsibility for the resultant destruction would rest exclusively on those who tolerate the rocket launches. This would be a classic case of deterrence in which Israel would manifestly demonstrate concern for innocent civilians by providing them with advance warning and then raze the locations from which the killers operate.
I venture to say that if we adopt this course of action, despite the inevitable outcry and condemnations from many of the hypocritical and biased international leaders, the rocket attacks will come to a speedy end.
The Americans will surely understand that such determined acts of self defense are the sole means for any country to end unprovoked assaults on its population centers. After all this is precisely what the Americans themselves have been doing in Iraq.
Every newspaper article mentions a viable Palestinian state. Every TV news show speaks of a viable Palestinian state. Last week the magic word was 'contiguous', this week it's 'viable'.
Just what is meant by a viable state? The dictionary says the word "viable" pertains to a fetus that is sufficiently developed to be able to survive after birth.
So, if we apply this word to the birth of a new state, then we are talking about a state that has the necessary infrastructure to survive and prosper - water, telephone, power, financial, transportation, industry, health and social welfare programs; a society that has educated and trained people to operate these assets efficiently and productively.
Is the Palestinian Authority ready? Are they prepared for statehood? Are they viable?
Are you kidding?
How could they be, when, for more than three years, all their efforts have been expended in terrorism against Israel, and billions of donated dollars have been spent buying weapons, building bombs, brainwashing their children, creating and glorifying a death cult, and making the elite few rich (including Yasser Arafat, who has secret bank accounts all over the world containing billions)?
We keep hearing that Israel must provide the Palestinians with a viable state.
Who provided Israel with a viable state?
It was mainly worldwide Jewry who supplied most of the funds with which to develop the new state, and it was the ragged remnant of immigrants from the ovens of Europe plus the Jewish refugees from Arab states who turned sand dunes to orange groves, drained the swamps, built towns and cities, factories, a national water and electrical system, roads, bridges, railroad, hotels, schools and universities, and the second most powerful hi-tech industry on earth. All this while at the same time absorbing millions of newcomers, fighting five Arab wars, and suffering constant terrorism.
If the Palestinians want a viable state, let them stop teaching their children to hate and kill. Let them use the billions of donated dollars for infrastructure and education. Let them tear down their miserable refugee camps and build decent housing for their people. The Saudis just had a fundraising campaign that raised 96 million dollars for Palestinian martyrs, a pleasant sounding euphemism for murderers and terrorists. Let them use this money to begin building the state they say they want instead of trying to destroy the state of Israel.
How many countries can you count that were handed a viable state on a silver platter?
None, that's how many.
What makes Arafat think the world owes him a ready-made, fully developed state? Let him work for it like everyone else. If he'd rather spend his money, energy and time looking for new and more horrific ways to murder Jews, he doesn't deserve any sort of state, let alone a viable one.
And he certainly doesn't deserve and shouldn't expect any help from his victims.
I What do Marwan Barghouti, Yasser Arafat, Ahmad Qureia, and leaders past and present of Hamas, Islamic Jihad and others, have in common? Besides encouraging their followers to kill Jews in Israel, they regularly pull the wool over their followers' eyes, lying, cheating, and profiting from the suffering of the Palestinians. They habitually sacrifice average Palestinians, in their struggle against Israel, while protecting themselves and their loved ones from harm.
The latest is the case of Marwan Barghouti, West Bank leader of Arafat's Fatah movement, founder of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigade (outlawed as a terrorist organization by the US) and a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council. Barghouti is serving five consecutive life terms in an Israeli prison for his involvement in terrorist activities that caused the deaths of many Israelis.
What did he do?
Hamas and Islamic Jihad, along with Fatah's Barghouti, recently called on Palestinian security prisoners in Israeli prisons to start a hunger strike. They've been into it for a few days now, the prison authorities report that over 2,000 prisoners are starving themselves. The Palestinian Authority and Israeli Arab groups have organized demonstrative solidarity days with the hunger strikers, but not Barghouti, he was caught on a hidden video camera in his cell...eating!
That's right, while his fellow prisoners were refraining from food, Marwan Barghouti, the Tanzim terrorist leader, was caught on camera feeding his face. First he covered the door and window of his cell - so as not to be seen - then he washed his hands and pigged out. According to Prison Services spokesman Ofer Lefler, Barghouti asked wardens for the food and ate without knowing that a camera was filming from a small hole in the wall. Israel wanted to catch him, to show fasting prisoners how their leader was behaving, Lefler said. "I want to show the world and the Palestinians that we are dealing with terrorists," Lefler continued, "Barghouti is sitting on a pot of meat and he sends his friends to die."
Then there's Yasser Arafat. No, he wasn't caught eating yet, but he did tell the Palestinian Legislative Council in Ramallah, that the hunger strikers are "shaheeds" (martyrs-I guess he's planning their early demise) saying, "Your release is at the top of our list of priorities. Together we will continue fighting until the establishment of our own state with Jerusalem as its capital. [Minister of Internal Security Tzahi] Hanegbi says that he doesn't care if you starve to death. I say to him that he does not scare us when he says we will die since we are all prepared to be Shaheeds." Arafat threatens martyrdom every so often to encourage his people to kill themselves, but when faced with real opportunities to be a martyr himself, he backs off (see my April 2004 article, "Arafat Plays Victim Again).
Yasser has done a good job of making sure Suha - his wife - and little girl Zahwa - aged nine - are safely absconded in France, far from any real danger. That's while other nine-year-old Palestinian children attend terrorist summer camps, dreaming and praying for martyrdom (i.e. to kill Israelis and themselves). Suha lives on over $150,000 a month, with $millions more in the bank. In fact, the French have been carrying out an investigation into Suha's accounts, it seems she might be involved in Yasser's money laundering activities. Yasser has been accused of having skimmed over the years $1-3 billion from Palestinian funds, for private usage. So, while Yasser Arafat encourages the children of his people to sacrifice their lives for the cause, he makes sure his daughter is safe in France, and while millions of ordinary Palestinians are in starvation-type conditions, living from day to day, Arafat's wife allegedly lived at a $16,000 a day hotel (suite plus 19 rooms) in Paris wh en she first got there, shopping in the most exclusive Parisian shops, and now has a mansion in an exclusive Parisian neighborhood.
Charges of corruption in the PA are rife, and recently Arafat was forced to admit - in a speech to the Palestinian Legislative Council - to making "mistakes" and pledged to clean up the Palestinian Authority. But he refused to sign anti-corruption legislation. In a "stormy and tense" follow-up meeting afterward, with pro-reform legislators, Arafat told them, "[that his speech] was enough and that there is no need for any signatures," said Azmi Shouabi, one of the meeting's participants.
Then there's Ahmad Qureia (Abu Ala) the Palestinian Prime Minister and another Fatah leader. He's been embroiled in what's been called the "PA cement scandal". Several Arab companies have been importing cement from Egypt on behalf of Israeli contractors. The Egyptian cement is then used to build parts of the separation fence, as well as new houses in Jewish communities in Yesha (Judea, Samaria and Gaza). They've been making a lot of money. And, according to reports, the Al-Quds Cement Factory in Abu Dis, in eastern Jerusalem, has been accused by others in the PA, of supplying material for the construction of the fence in Abu Dis itself, and Jewish communities in Yesha. That factory is co-owned by the family of the PA Prime Minister Ahmed Qureia. So while Qureia screams about "the settlements and the wall," he and his family are pocketing profits from their construction.
Maybe the Hamas and Islamic Jihad people are better?
Not a chance. While calling for more Israeli deaths - read, more Arabs killing themselves in terror attacks against Jews - Hamas and Jihad leaders scrambled like rats to hide in the woodwork every time Israel attempted another "targeted killing". After Israel picked off Hamas leader Ismail Abu Shanab last year, all the top Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists were reported to have gone into hiding. That scenario repeated itself several times over the next year as Israel eliminated terrorist leaders Sheikh Yassin, Rantisi and others.
Shortly after Abu Shanab's departure last year, I had to pay a condolence call, where I tried to cheer up a mourner by telling him a joke. I told him, "I heard on the radio that one of the top Hamas officials was on a live telephone interview with Al-Jazeera TV [which is very important for their propaganda campaign], when he heard something outside, the sound of helicopters in the distance. He immediately told the reporter, 'I am sorry, this interview is over, I have to go now'. Click went the phone." I told him, "The good news is that all the top Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists are reported to have gone into hiding. They're all running like rats. Those so-called 'holy warriors' who send off others to murder and die, they're terrified." That cheered him up, and it should cheer us up as well. For all their rhetoric, all these terrorist leaders aren't running to be martyrs either. And do you think any of their sons or daughters are becoming suicidal bombers? Not a chance...
Compared to Arafat, and Hamas and Islamic Jihad leaders (many who are now dead), who regularly incite the Palestinian masses to sacrifice themselves for Palestine, Barghouti's little indiscretion - eating during a hunger strike - seems rather mild. And, can we really fault old Yasser for trying to better himself from the Palestinian's pocketbook, or, Ahmad's avaricious behavior?
It really is indicative of a much broader problem, that Palestinians face, the perfidy of their "leaders".
But then again, they are terrorists aren't they? And the biggest victims of Palestinian terrorism are the so-called Palestinian people themselves...
Ariel Natan Pasko is an independent analyst & consultant. He has a Master's Degree in International Relations & Policy Analysis. His articles appear regularly on numerous news/views and think-tank websites, in newspapers, and this website
Hal Lindsey is the best-selling author of 20 books, including "Late Great Planet Earth." Be sure to visit his website where he provides up-to-the-minute analysis of today's world events in the light of ancient prophecies.
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