Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Democrat From Vermont: Senator Patrick Leahy's Chutzpa Towards Israel

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                                              
Senator Patrick Leahy
Senator Bernie Sanders

"Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday responded to U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy’s (D-Vt.) letter to the U.S. State Department that asked for an investigation into Israeli and Egyptian human rights abuses.

What chutzpa this Vermont Senator has!  Israel has been touted since its inception as the ONLY state in the Middle East that is Democratic!  They have gone to great lengths to regard human rights as the highest priority, and here he charges Israel, the country who invented human rights, with violations.

The first thing I noted is that the other senator in the news daily has been Bernie Sanders, also a Democrat from Vermont, who has also spoken harshly of Israel, and he himself is a Jew!  Is the harsh weather of Vermont affecting these senators' minds?  Has Bernie started this doubt about Israel?

The letter was signed by 10 others of Congress. They listed “extrajudicial executions” of Palestinians, Politico reported. That language on executions echoes the controversial criticism of Israel voiced earlier this year by Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom.  By ignoring this letter, they are being threatened to invoke the Leahy Law.  "The “Leahy Law” stipulates a reduction in U.S. military aid for foreign countries whose security forces are found to have committed abuses. "  This seems to me that coming from the Democrats, who do not join the Republicans as much in cutting expenses in order to bring down the $19 trillion the USA owes as a debt to China, that they are picking on the Republican's preferred state in helping to fight against terrorism.  Israel needs to be defensive.  

May I remind people that the 10 Commandments, brought to the Israelites by Moses from G-d were a set of human rights?  They were the fountainhead of all the other laws given to the Jews, all 613 more.  They are found  in Exodus 20:2-14 and repeated again with slight variations in Deuteronomy 5:6-18.  
1. The belief in one G-d.                                        6. Prohibition against murder
2.Prohibition of idolatry                                          7. Prohibition against adultery
3. Prohibition of taking vain oaths                          8. Prohibition against kidnapping (or steal)
4. Observe the Sabbath                                         9. Prohibition against bearing false witness
5. Honor your parents                                          10. Prohibition against coveting     

The Israeli army services (IDF) Israel Defence Forces, were started  in 1948 during the War of Independence on the basis of the Hagana and the other voluntary underground organizations that operated during the Mandatory period when Britain had been in charge of the land for the past 30 years.  Also, it included veterans of the Jewish Brigade and other units which fought with the Allies during WWII.  Because of the protracted conflict, kept up by the Arab States, Israel must maintain a highly trained defense system, with modern equipment, alert to protect life and property and meet any possible aggression.   My 3rd cousin, STANLEY GOLDFOOT from South Africa, was the Chief of Intelligence for the Stern Group of Palestine at the time.  Another cousin,  STEPHEN GOLDFOOT,  became a Flight Lieutenant in the SA Air Force during WWII.  Stephen died as a result of his plane being shot down over the Egyptian western desert when the allies were firing on Rommel's troops on the 12th of December 1941.    Was there ever another army like this in the world put together as they fought?  They've turned out to be examples for others to follow.  
Serving in the army is something both male and females do in Israel.  When I lived in Israel from 1980-1985, males served for 3 years and women for 2 years.  They were then placed on reserve status until the age of 55.  At least by 1973, women served in all 3 forces as non-combatant personnel, replacing men, who are thus made available for duty in combat formations.  Today they are probably included in more things.  "But a closer look shows Israeli women are not in direct combat special operations such as the Green Berets. Nor are they in front-line combat brigades mobilized to engage in direct heavy combat.
In the infantry, virtually all of Israel’s female combat soldiers are confined to two light battalions — the Caracal and the Lions of Jordan — which are assigned to guard the borders with Egypt and Jordan, the only Arab countries that have peace treaties with Israel."  Again, thinking of human rights, Israel is not willing to put a woman in more than harm's way is called for. Her enemies are known to be more than ferocious and without the ethics they have. Logic prevails.                                                                                   
Yoni Netanyahu, the brother of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, lost his life
when serving in the army.  
Yonatan "Yoni" Netanyahu was an Israel Defense Forces officer who commanded the elite commando unit,  Sayeret Matkal,  during Operation Entebbe, a operation to rescue hostages held at Entebbe Airport in Uganda in 1976.  He was only 30 years old at the time.   The mission was successful, with 102 of the 106 hostages rescued, but Netanyahu was killed in action—the only IDF fatality during the operation.
  "The Israeli army has a strong ethical and moral code based on the laws and institutions of the State of Israel, the traditions of the Jewish people and democratic principles. The army guarantees basic rights for its soldiers and maintains a level of morality in the conduct of war and military operations. For example, during training, the army has a commitment to guarantee a minimum of six hours sleep a night for soldiers and seven hours before soldiers undertake a combat operation, grant regular breaks to soldiers, guaranteed meals with a minimum diet and to provide clothes and housing."

Evidently Leahy has little respect for the Jewish ethics and moral codes and the laws of Israel, or even our Jewish traditions and democratic principles to send such a letter.  Big brother (the United States) is always watching Israel, and Israelis know they are always being criticized through the UN as well, so they are more than sensitive to such watching and know that they of all people can never make a mistake.  They, like the Chinese have always felt, know they cannot bring disrespect to their family.  The Israelis are the strictest of all on their own behaviors.  They have more than enough on the left to criticize them for any mis-step, so they are always on their toes.  

It's enough that the UN is made up of enemies of Israel who pounce all the time on the little state, but now we have Leahy and his 10 joining in the fray.  
Ethiopian Jewish IDF
"Soldiers also have certain obligations. The first is the concept of 'personal example.' Being in uniform means that the soldier is a representative of the army and State and therefore both soldiers and officers are expected to set a 'personal example' by obeying the law of the land, appearing in orderly dress and not causing any public disturbance. The military police have the right to caution and even arrest any soldier deemed behaving inappropriately. The concept of 'personal example also extends to the battlefield. An officer is always expected to lead from the front. The famous cry of the officer is "aharai", after me. The fact that senior officers take front line combat positions means Israel suffers, proportionately the highest officer to soldier casualty rate in the world. However, the IDF believes that leading by examples increases respect for the officer corps and instills greater motivation among soldiers. Soldiers are trained to take over command in a situation where an officer is killed or injured."     

"Israel has a principle that weapons and force can only be used for the purpose of a military operation and not to harm human beings who are non-combatants or who are prisoners of war. This involves avoiding at all costs damage to human life, dignity and property. Enemy troops and civilians in areas under the control of the IDF have to be treated with the letter and spirit of the law. Soldiers have to show respect for the beliefs, values and historical sites of all civilians and military personnel."                   

This letter has followed several weeks of  Palestinian belligerence of stabbing pedestrians in Jerusalem with knives as they walk by or ramming into crowds waiting for a bus with their cars.  Yet, where is the letter about human rights to them?   It's always the same, whether it comes from the UN or our Obama government; blame Israel--not the Palestinians.  After 67 years, I can see that the Palestinians are not ALL eager to make peace with Israel.  They want to take over the country.  This has been the plan since 1948, and the die-hards are still aiming for it.  They're just like ISIS who wanted their own state and have achieved part of Iraq and Syria now.  Palestinians have been offered their own state since 1948-taking a small piece of Israel that was left after giving away 80% of it to Jordan as a state-but NO, they want all of Israel's 20%.  .  

"The IDF faces a number of major challenges. Both the threat to Israel and the nature of warfare and weapons systems is shifting. The Israeli security perimeter has extended outward, toward Iran and beyond. As a consequence, the IDF is expanding its planning over a large radius. This means, for example, that the importance given to the tank in Israel's defense concept is giving way to ballistic and radar systems and weapons research."

Another challenge are people such as Leahy who charge-UNFAIR!  Every person living in Israel is acutely aware of their precarious position and of all the surrounding enemies, yet maintains more than expected in the line of "HUMAN RIGHTS'' OF OTHERS.  They have even put themselves in harm's way to protect this principal.  This is probably what brought on the harsh criticism of any soldier in the IDF of breaking such laws.  

Update: 1:51pm PST.  On Hebron shooting of terrorist.
Update: 4:32pm   utm_source=MadMimi&utm_medium=email&utm_content=Sanders+Accuses+Israel+of+Killing+10%2C000+Palestinians%3B+US+Jewish+Leader+Warns+Israel+of+Obama+Harm%3B+Trump%27s+Jewish+Son-in-Law&utm_campaign=20160406_m130693623_Sanders+Accuses+Israel+of+Killing+10%2C000+Palestinians%3B+US+Jewish+Leader+Warns+Israel+of+Obama+Harm%3B+Trump%27s+Jewish+Son-in-Law&utm_term=more_btn_light_png 

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