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      From the Hills of Efraim
      by Yisrael Medad
      This blog will be informative, highlight foibles, will be assertively contentious and funny and wryly satirical.
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      Yisrael Medad is a revenant resident of Shiloh, in the Hills of Efrayim north of Jerusalem.  He arrived in Israel with his wife, Batya, in 1970 and lived in the renewing Jewish Quarter, eventually moving to Shiloh in 1981. 

      Currently the Menachem Begin Center's Information Resource Director, he has previously been director of Israel's Media Watch, a Knesset aide to three Members of Knesset and a lecturer in Zionist History.  He assists the Yesha Council in it's contacts with the Foreign Media in a volunteer capacity, is active on behalf of Jewish rights on the Temple Mount and is involved in various Jewish and Zionist activist causes.  He contributes a Hebrew-language media column to Besheva and publishes op-eds in the Jerusalem Post and other periodicals.

      He also blogs at MyRightWord in English and, in Hebrew, at The Right Word.

      Cheshvan 19, 5768, 10/31/2007

      No Prejudice and No Discrimination

      The other day, there was a ruckus.  A group of religious fanatics attacked policemen, endangering their lives.  A policewomen was taken hostage after severely beaten and stabbed.  Only after police agreed to release prisoners was the woman released herself in exchange.

      Did this happen in the hills of Samaria with the "Youthtop Youth"?

      Did this happen in the Casbah of Hebron where rocks were thrown at policemen before?

      Did this happen at Amona?

      No, at none of these places. 

      It happened at Peki'in.  They weren't Jews - but Druze.

      Can you imagine this happening, say, in Hebron?  Or in Homesh? Or in Gush Katif in the summer of '05?

      Dare I think that this is blatant discrimination?

      Druze does ryhme with Jews but there the similarity stops.

      Some might think it admirable that a potentially explosive situation was defused in this way.

      Well, if so (and these people are mainly bleeding-heart liberals), can we have them sympathize with Jews in parallel situations when attacked by ill-disciplined police personnel?

      No prejudice, no discrimination

      Cheshvan 18, 5768, 10/30/2007

      The Culture Gap

      May I introduce to you Mr. Tyler Brule (that's a circumflexed u and an acute e for you French speakers who need the diacritic marks, although his father never used them).  He's a Canadian in Europe and a homosexual, two things that have nothing to do with this column.  In his past as a reporter, he spent time with the Arafats in their Tunisian compound (before an Israeli Prime Minister, a Foreign Minister and one poodle all thought it would be a great idea to bring them from their compound to close proximity to Israel) and survived an ambush in Kabul where he was shot twice, he claims.  He thinks that media and design are inextricably linked and that it's pedantic (his words) to attempt to keep the two apart.

      That's him above.

      Tyler has an urban environment column every Saturday in the International Herald Tribune. And how do I know that?  Well, I spotted this ad below:

      You only have to take about 30 seconds to notice that neither Jerusalem nor Tel Aviv are in that ad.  No culture there is the only assumption.  Tyler (sorry but I prefer his first name rather than a family name I don't know how to pronounce) has designed his purview of culture so that Israel and its cities are not linked to anything.  Tripoli, though, where the Arafatian compound used to be, is included.  There is a nothingness between Cairo and Dubai.  Once again, Israel is wiped off the map but this time, the prestigious Int'l Herald Tribune has a hand in it.

      What am I and you, my readers, to deduce from this?  An error?  A typo?  Or, perhaps, there's a grand design at work.  A few days ago, Roger Cohen published in the IHT a piece on the Bamiyan Buddhas.  You remember those: the rock-carved statues that the Talibans dynamited in Afghanistan.  And he even referred to the destroyers as Islamic fanatics.  But does the IHT have anything special about some other Islamic fanatics who are destroying another religious site called the Temple Mount in Jerusalem (that city that even isn't included in the ad about culture)?  Is there a Jewish culture besides Halle Berry's joke about noses, not to forget Sarah Silverman's joke about Amy Winehouse's nose ( At the VMA this year, she declared that Winehouse is Jewish - and she is - and "if she isn't, then someone needs to tell her face" and, pointing at her own prominent nose, Silverman shouted, "she's got one of these".)

      Is anti-Israel and anti-Zionist sentiment based on politics moving on over into the culture sphere of downright Judeaphobia?  Are too many Jews lending a hand?  Is George W. Bush the only one truly concerned about the Iranian threat to obliterate Israel?

      There's a gap developing more rapidly than we can grasp and there's a lot of work to be down before we fall into it.  It's a culture gap, a political gap and a psychological one.  It's no use moaning or ignoring or assuming that aloneness is an okay reality.

      Cheshvan 12, 5768, 10/24/2007

      "Apartheid" They Claim

      As this site reports, a soldier was shot and severely wounded today near Ariel.

      He was "tremping", that Israeli slang term for hitchhiking.

      For the past few years, the far-out Left, the Jewish peace camp extremists, Haaretz and others have been trying to get the term "apartheid" into general lexicon usage.

      But I ask you, besides all the other silly and ridiculous apsects of this false comparison, if the system Israel practices in YESHA is one of apartheid, how come Arab vehicles can drive along roads that enable them to shoot at Israelis?

      Either there's "apartheid" or there isn't, right?

      Cheshvan 11, 5768, 10/23/2007

      One Conspiracy Gone

      Last night here in Israel, all the TV channels showed portions of the police video recording of Yigal Amir, the killer of Yitzhak Rabin, during his first interrogation.

      Many conspiracy theories exist about that assassination.  One of them, a staple of the Left-wing, is that the cause of the murder, what sent Amir to pull the trigger, was a "campaign of incitement", foremost, that of "the Rabbis".

      It doesn't perturb these kooks that the most active inciter, the person who appeared the most in the media, was, of all people, a GSS agent - Avishai Raviv.

      But as I watched the video clip, I heard the police investigator ask: "When did the idea to kill the Prime Minister first enter your head?"

      The answer was "Since the Oslo One agreement".

      Dear readers, Oslo One was signed on September 13, 1993.

      Even if we grant Amir a bit of lattitude and extend the time line of Oslo A for even a half year more into 1994, the so-called "campaign of incitement" didn't start until the second half of 1994 and the beginning of 1995.  The chanting of the kids, the Zion Square rally, the Succot pushing-affair, the Pulsa D'Nura ceremony and the faked swearing-in ceremony, all these are 1995.

      So, what "incitment campaign" are we talking about that had a direct affect on Amir?

      Cheshvan 9, 5768, 10/21/2007

      So, Partition Isn't the Solution?

      The United States has a problem.

      One of its allies has been attacked over the years by an underground which has employed not only traditional national liberation tactics but also terror against civilians.  This undergound is based just across the ally's border.  This underground movement has centuries-long claims on portions of the ally's territory.

      However, the solution of partition is not on the agenda. The ally is not being asked to give up territory.

      If you were thinking that perhaps this ally I have been describing is Israel - you're wrong.

      I'm talking about Turkey and its Kurdish problem which of late has been an increasingly pressing issue.

      Israel must be forced into the "territories for peace" paradigm.  But not Turkey.  Turkey is not being forced, gently or otherwise, to yield up portions of what it considers its territory to placate the pesh merga of the PKK, or the resistance fighters, operating out of the Qandil mountains on the border between Turkey and Iraq.  Indeed, the shoe is perhaps on the other foot in that Iraq is beginning to pressured to grant further autonomy to the already mostly autonomous Kurdish region which has been so since 1991.

      The so-called Palestine Authority has been semi-autonomous since 1993 and it also has been promoting terror attacks against of American ally - Israel.  But Israel, unlike Turkey, is caught in the vise of "yield-surrender-withdraw".  Specious historical, legal and religious claims of the Arabs are taken at face value but the Kurds are portrayed in the most negative light.

      I myself have to real knowledge as regards the justice of the Kurdish cause (although Israel was a special supporter of the Kurds in the early 1960s on onwards).  But, nevertheless, I think a lesson can be learned.  Turkey is an ally not because it is the most democratic country in the Middle East nor the richest.  But it is strategic.  America needs its bases and especially its airfields.  And it does not want Turkey to stage border-crossing raids into Iraq to root out the PKK.

      And still, partition is not a threat to Turkey unlike how it hangs like a sword over Israel's vulnerable neck.

      There's a lesson here.  But who will learn?

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