Daily TIP

The Daily TIP: TIP CEO: With Recent Diplomatic Gains It's "Israel’s Adversaries Who Risk Isolation"

Posted by Tip Staff - November 30, 2018

TIP CEO: With Recent Diplomatic Gains It's "Israel’s Adversaries Who Risk Isolation"
CNN Parts Ways with Commentator after He Calls for "Palestine from the River to the Sea"
Weapons Experts: Satellite Images Confirm Netanyahu's Claims about Iran's Nuclear Warehouse
Israeli Region Hosting 20th Annual Wine Festival

TIP CEO: With Recent Diplomatic Gains It's "Israel’s Adversaries Who Risk Isolation"

In an op-ed published in The Hill on Friday, Joshua S. Block, CEO and President of The Israel Project, wrote that “Israel’s standing in the world appears to be at a high point,” as a result of “a string of extraordinary diplomatic breakthroughs.”

Block referenced a series of recent groundbreaking events between Israel and the Muslim world, but also hailed Israel’s diplomatic achievements India, China, Latin America and Eastern Europe.

“Benjamin Netanyahu was the first sitting Israeli prime minister to visit Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda, Ethiopia and Liberia,” Block explained. On Sunday, Idris Déby became the first president of Chad, a Muslim-majority nation in Central Africa, to visit Israel and pledged a new era of relations, 46 years after ties were severed.

What Block called “Israel’s charm offensive” has also extended to Eastern Europe. On Tuesday, the Czech Republic opened a cultural centre in Jerusalem, which President Milos Zeman hailed as another step towards relocating his country’s embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Block further noted that “the leaders of Bosnia-Herzegovina, Macedonia, Albania and Serbia” have all been to Israel on official visits and that “Kosovo has lobbied Israel to recognize it as a sovereign state.”

At the same time, Block described the diplomatic breakthroughs Israel has achieved in Latin America. “Netanyahu also became the first sitting Israeli prime minister to visit Latin America when he visited Argentina, Colombia and Mexico in September 2017,” Block said. The prime minister’s office confirmed that Netanyahu had plans to visit Latin America again, including Guatemala, a country that moved its embassy to Jerusalem two days after the United States relocated its mission in May.

Moving on to the Middle East, Block observed, “Iran’s hegemonic venture has ratcheted up the stakes in ways that produced once-in-a-generation opportunities” and made “rapprochement between Israel and the Gulf a real possibility.” He cited as examples Oman’s plea to the Arab world to recognize Israel as a sovereign state, as well as recent diplomatic breakthroughs with the United Arab Emirates. In addition, Netanyahu is expected to visit Bahrain “soon,” his office said.

“Israel still has many battles to fight,” Block acknowledged. However, “the Jewish state has forged unprecedented relationships with countries that once were off limits.” Instead, Block said, “it is Israel’s adversaries who risk isolation.”

CNN Parts Ways with Commentator after He Calls for "Palestine from the River to the Sea"

CNN announced that it was ending its association with commentator Marc Lamont Hill following a speech at the United Nations in which he called for a "free Palestine from the river to the sea," a phrase often used by the terrorist group Hamas, the New York Post reported Thursday.

Hill had called for a "free Palestine from the river to the sea" in a prepared speech that he offered at the United Nations in commemoration of the organization's International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.

Sharon Nazarian, the Anti-Defamation League’s (ADL) senior vice president for international affairs, responded in an e-mail to the Jewish Journal, “Those calling for ‘from the river to the sea’ are calling for an end to the State of Israel.”

Hill, meanwhile, has defended himself on Twitter for the use of the phrase, writing, "My reference to 'river to the sea' was not a call to destroy anything or anyone. It was a call for justice, both in Israel and in the West Bank/Gaza. The speech very clearly and specifically said those things."

However, a document released last year by Hamas used virtually identical language.

The document first defined Palestine as extending "from the River Jordan in the east to the Mediterranean in the west and from Ras Al-Naqurah in the north to Umm Al-Rashrash in the south." Later the document states, "Hamas rejects any alternative to the full and complete liberation of Palestine, from the river to the sea."

While the document had been described as having softened Hamas's rejection of Israel, experts who read it concluded that it showed no such moderation on the part of Hamas.

Hill also explicitly supported the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel and implicitly supported terrorism saying that the Palestinians should not be "be shamed for resisting."

Weapons Experts: Satellite Images Confirm Netanyahu's Claims about Iran's Nuclear Warehouse

Satellite images obtained over the summer confirm charges made by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in September that Iran had a secret nuclear warehouse in Tehran, a team of weapons inspectors wrote in a paper published Thursday.

The paper — authored by David Albright, Olli Heinonen, Frank Pabian, and Andrea Stricker — asserted that the satellite pictures show the "steady progression of containers disappearing from the site from July into September," likely removing "equipment and nuclear material" from the warehouse. Albright is founder and president of the Institute for Science and International Security as well as a former United Nations weapons inspector; Heinonen is a senior advisor to the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and a former Deputy Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency; Pabian is a former inspector for the IAEA, and Stricker is a senior policy analyst at the Institute.

In his September 27 speech to the United Nations General Assembly, Netanyahu charged that in addition to a nuclear archive — that he had revealed in April — Iran maintained a warehouse of equipment used for its nuclear weapons program.

The paper described images showing some 15 shipping containers by the nuclear warehouse from December 2017 until the middle of this year following the revelation of the nuclear archive.

Though Netanyahu had shared the intelligence with the IAEA about the containers leaving the area of the warehouse, the paper noted that "the IAEA did not act on this." By failing to follow up, "the IAEA may have lost a remarkable opportunity to have asked to go to the site while shipping containers remained there, and irretrievably lost its capability to find the equipment and confirm its true purpose."

Israeli Region Hosting 20th Annual Wine Festival

Each weekend from November 30 through December 22, wineries will offer a taste of their wares at the 20th annual Yehuda Regional Council Wine Festival.

Celebrating the diversity of the wineries in the grape-rich Judean hills outside Jerusalem, the festival opened on the evening of November 29 at the Yad Hashmona Country Hotel, where 33 participating wineries will offer unlimited tastings for an admission price of ₪60 (about $16).

Each weekend there will be events at various wineries, including live concerts, guided tours, nature walks in the vineyards, conversations with winemakers and vintners, culinary events and sports activities.

Seahorse, Kedma, Kerema, Ella Valley, Zafririm and Gizo wineries are planning to launch new wines during the festival.

Among the other participating wineries are Yavne, Rogelit, Kela David, Hans Sternbach, La Terra Promessa, Nevo, Flam, Tzora, Clos de Gat, Soreq, Bravdo, Rama, Aharonof, Yehuda, Anatot, Yaffo, Kela David, Srigim and Hadar.

The Yehuda Regional Council also is celebrating the process of being declared an official wine region, thereby gaining worldwide recognition just like Tuscany in Italy or Burgundy in France. On each Friday the council will offer a tour of three wineries for ₪100 per person.

For more details and registration for tours, contact the Tourism Department of the Yehuda Regional Council, (02-995-8650). The festival website is in Hebrew but there are English descriptions of the wineries.

(via Israel21c)

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