Daily TIP

The Daily TIP: Trump Expresses Commitment to Israel-Palestinian Peace, Fighting Iranian Threat in Speech

Posted by Tip Staff - December 18, 2017

Trump Expresses Commitment to Israel-Palestinian Peace, Fighting Iranian Threat in Speech
Obama Admin Ended Program Targeting Hezbollah Drug Smuggling to Secure Nuke Deal with Iran
Haley: Veto of Security Council Jerusalem Resolution was In Defense of American Sovereignty
Israeli NGO Brings Electricity, Clean Water to Rural Africa

Trump Expresses Commitment to Israel-Palestinian Peace, Fighting Iranian Threat in Speech

In his speech on Monday, outlining America's national security strategy, U.S. President Donald Trump reiterated his commitments to supporting peace efforts between Israel and the Palestinians as well as fighting Iran's "malign influence.”

“For generations, the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians has been understood as the prime irritant preventing peace and prosperity in the region," Trump said. "Today, the threats from jihadist terrorist organizations and the threat from Iran are creating the realization that Israel is not the cause of the region’s problems,” he added.

This observation rejects positions expressed by Trump's predecessor, Barack Obama, who told Jeffrey Goldberg of The Atlantic in 2008, that the Israeli-Palestinian is a “constant sore,” which “does infect all our foreign policy.”

Trump further noted that "states have increasingly found common interests with Israel," in confronting terrorist threats in the region as evidenced by a recent delegation of Bahrainis, sent by the Gulf state's king to bring a message of peace to Israel, and recent outreach between Israelis and Saudis.

Nonetheless, Trump also asserted that he was "committed” to achieving peace between Israel and the Palestinians.

He called Iran “the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism.”

Trump further observed that Iran was threatening other nations through its proxies and warned that it was developing "more capable ballistic missiles and has the potential to resume its work on nuclear weapons.” Iran continues testing ballistic missiles and shipping arms to its allies in defiance of U.N. Security Council resolution 2231.

Obama Admin Ended Program Targeting Hezbollah Drug Smuggling to Secure Nuke Deal with Iran

The Obama administration obstructed a campaign by the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to monitor and prosecute Iranian-backed terrorist group Hezbollah, in order to solidify the 2015 nuclear accord with the Islamic Republic, Politico reported on Sunday.

The campaign, called Project Cassandra, launched in 2008, was aimed at disrupting Hezbollah’s weapons and drug trafficking, which included smuggling cocaine into the U.S. Over the years, the Lebanese-based terror organization had morphed from a Middle East-focused military group into an international crime syndicate.

But the DEA’s efforts to undermine the group’s illicit activities and to file criminal charges against high-profile Hezbollah operatives failed, after the U.S. Department of State, Department of Justice and Department of Treasury refused to cooperate.

“This was a policy decision, it was a systematic decision,” said David Asher, an analyst for the U.S. Department of Defense specializing, who helped set up and run Project Cassandra.

His agents had discovered “an entire Quds force network” in the U.S., laundering money, moving drugs and illegally smuggling Bell helicopters, night-vision goggles and other items for the regime in Tehran. Despite the task force having amassed “excellent evidence and testifying witnesses,” their attempt to disrupt the elite Iranian unit were severely obstructed.

Asher added that Obama officials also undermined DEA’s efforts to apprehend top Hezbollah operatives, including those tasked with murdering American soldiers and government employees. One of them was Ali Fayad, a senior weapons supplier to Syrian regime President Bashar Assad who reports directly to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Haley: Veto of Security Council Jerusalem Resolution was In Defense of American Sovereignty

United States Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said Monday that the veto she cast against a U.N. Security Council resolution reaffirming previous Security Council resolutions that do not recognize Israeli sovereignty over Jerusalem, was a “defense of American sovereignty and in defense of America’s role in the Middle East peace process.”

“The draft resolution also reiterated the council’s view that no country should establish an embassy in Jerusalem,” The New York Times reported, “and that Jerusalem’s status is an issue to be resolved by Israel and the Palestinians, who want eastern Jerusalem to be the capital of a future Palestinian state.”

The Egyptian-drafted resolution stated that Jerusalem “is a final-status issue to be resolved through negotiations.”

The resolution was introduced in objection to President Donald Trump’s recent recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

But, as Haley pointed out, Trump’s declaration did nothing to predetermine the outcome of negotiations, “The President took great care not to prejudge final status negotiations in any way, including the specific boundaries of Israeli sovereignty in Jerusalem. That remains a subject to be negotiated only by the parties. That position is fully in line with the previous Security Council resolutions.”

While not saying that the U.S. would move its embassy to Jerusalem, Haley also argued that “the United States’ has a sovereign right to determine where and whether we establish an embassy. I suspect very few Member States would welcome Security Council pronouncements about their sovereign decisions.”

Israeli NGO Brings Electricity, Clean Water to Rural Africa

The scene was shocking: Villagers in Akuyam, Uganda, hadn’t eaten in three days when Sivan Ya’ari and her Innovation: Africa staff met them in February 2017 on their way to check on the organization’s solar water-pumping and drip-irrigation projects in six nearby villages.

“The state of poverty we saw there was nothing like we’d ever seen before. During the week we were there, 37 people died. The drought and hunger is truly incomprehensible,” says Genna Brand, iA’s director of communications.

Ya’ari, the Israeli founder of the nine-year-old NGO, immediately added Akuyam to iA’s list of projects in the Karamoja region.

“We went back to Israel and raised $110,000 for a food relief mission and sent maize, beans and other food through an African supplier. It was very challenging logistically but we couldn’t turn a blind eye to what we saw,” Brand tells ISRAEL21c.

iA’s country manager in Uganda reported that both the emergency aid and the water-pumping project have led to healthier and happier Akuyam residents.

iA has so far installed solar technology in schools, orphanages and medical clinics in some 150 villages in Uganda, Malawi, Tanzania, South Africa, Ethiopia, DRC, Senegal and Cameroon, bringing clean water and electricity to more than 1 million people.

Ya’ari believes that using Israeli knowhow to harness energy from the abundant sun in Africa is the key to freeing rural villagers from poverty and food insecurity. Electricity allows them to pump water for drip irrigation, refrigerate lifesaving medications and vaccines, and light up classrooms.

(via Israel21c)

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