Archive for 11/15/2012

Worldwide Protests Against Israel Planned Over Gaza As Palestinians Clash With Israeli Forces, Attempt To Break Into IDF Base

11/15/2012 1 comment

Ma’an News Agency – “RAMALLAH (Ma’an) — Palestinian protesters clashed with Israeli forces as demonstrations were held across the West Bank to support Gaza on Thursday, witnesses and officials said.

Nine women were detained on Thursday evening after they climbed the walls of Israel’s Beit El settlement near Ramallah. The protesters carried banners and draped the Palestinian flag across the wall. A number of protesters escaped arrest, witnesses said.

An Israeli military spokeswoman said a number of people were arrested for trying to ‘infiltrate a military base,’ but she could not confirm the number of detentions.

The rally was held in support of Palestinians in Gaza, after Israeli forces killed 15 Palestinians in the coastal strip over 24 hours. Three Israelis died on Thursday morning after militants returned rocket fire.

Protesters clashes with soldiers in nearby Ofer military base outside Ramallah at noon on Thursday, witnesses said. No injuries have been reported. An Israeli military spokeswoman was looking into the incident.

Meanwhile, dozens of Palestinians held a sit-in at Manara square in central Ramallah to condemn Israel’s actions in Gaza.

The crowd, addressed by Palestinian political leaders, chanted slogans against Israeli aggression and called for the international community to intervene.” Read more.

Hundreds of Tunisians protest Israel attacks on Gaza – “Hundreds of Tunisians demonstrated on Thursday against Israel’s deadly attacks on Gaza, as Israeli planes pounded armed groups in the Palestinian territory for a second day, an AFP journalist reported. Several hundred protesters, gathered on Habib Bourguiba Avenue in the centre of Tunis, shouted slogans such as ‘No to reconciliation,’ and ‘The people want to criminalise normalised relations with the (Zionist) entity.’ Youth supporters of Tunisia’s ruling Islamist party Ennahda also called for a demonstration on Friday, ‘after the odious crimes committed by the Zionist entity, which has violated the land and places that are sacred.'” Read more.

Egyptians protest Israeli assaults on Gaza outside Arab League – “Hundreds of Egyptian protesters converged on the Arab League’s Cairo headquarters on Thursday evening to demand an immediate halt to ongoing Israeli military operations in the Gaza Strip, which have so far claimed the lives of 15 Palestinians. Protesters further demanded that Egypt cut formal relations with Tel Aviv in retaliation for the latest round of Israeli aggression against the besieged coastal enclave… ‘Arm us, arm us and to Gaza send us,’ demonstrators chanted in unison as some set fire to Israeli flags.” Read more.

Worldwide Protests Against Israeli ‘Aggression’ in Gaza – “Here is a list of Emergency Global Actions for Gaza being planned around the world. This list is being constantly updated, please check here for the latest.” Read more.

Rumors Of War: Egyptian Tanks Moving Into Sinai Desert Toward Israel

11/15/2012 1 comment

Until confirmed by other news agencies, take this with a grain of salt …

“It has been reported that Egyptian tanks backed By commandos are moving into the Sinai desert in order to fortify positions in the case of an all out war between Israel and Gaza after an Israeli operation killed the head of the military wing of the Islamist group Hamas in a missile strike on the Gaza Strip on Wednesday and launched a campaign of air strikes on the enclave.

The armed wing of Hamas – the Ezzedine al-Qassam Brigades announced that ‘the occupation has opened the gates of hell on itself’ by assassinating its top commanders.

The two sides appeared to be on the cusp of a fresh war and the attacks marked the biggest escalation between Israel and Gaza militants since a 2008-2009 conflict. It came despite signs on Tuesday that neighboring Egypt had managed to broker a truce in the enclave after a five day surge of violence.

It appears that the Egyptian brokered truce has failed spectacularly and reports are coming in that Egyptian tanks are racing across the Sinai Desert in order to fortify positions along’s Israels borders. This action indicates that Egypt takes the all out threat of war in the region very seriously and is protecting their borders with extreme caution.

Sources in the Egyptian government say they have [been] extremely concerned about the recent shellings in Gaza by Israel. It is understood to have put extreme pressure on the military as they are hesitant to increase tensions in the area.” Source – Cybertribe News Network.

There Will Be War In The Middle East – “The military action that we are watching in the Middle East right now is just a preview of coming attractions. Tensions in the region are rising with each passing day, and all sides have been anticipating future conflicts and preparing for war for decades. It would be wonderful if everyone could sit down, forgive each other and agree to quit fighting, but that is not going to happen. Most of us that live in the western world have a very difficult time understanding the mindset of those immersed in these conflicts. In the Middle East, there are vendettas and grudges that go back literally thousands of years.” Read more.

Israeli Interior Minister: Gaza Is In For An ‘Unprecedented Attack’, IDF Massing Armor And Ground Forces Near Gaza Border

11/15/2012 3 comments

By Gil Ronen, INN – “Sirens sounded in Tel Aviv and residents were told to head for shelter Thursday evening. An explosion was reportedly heard. Magen David Adom said that there were no casualties.

Voice of Israel public radio said that the rocket is believed to have struck in a southern suburb of Tel Aviv, but Home Front Defense Minister Avi Dichter said that the rocket apparently fell into the sea near Bat Yam.

Minister of Public Security Yitzchak Aharonovich gave a conflicting account and said that a missile fell into the sea.

The IDF is amassing ground forces near Gaza and preparing for a possible assault. Interior Minister Eli Yishai (Shas) told Voice of Israel that Gaza is in for an ‘unprecedented attack.’

Defense Minister Ehud Barak on Thursday approved the call-up of 30,000 reserve soldiers, who can be called into action by the military at any point, the army’s official spokesman said.

‘We are in the process of expanding the campaign,’ Brigadier General Yoav Mordechai told Channel 2 television as Israel pressed a massive air campaign against Gaza terrorists.

‘The Defense Minister approved a few minutes ago, based on the army’s request, the recruitment of another 30,000 soldiers. We will determine how many of them will be called in,’ he said. ‘All options are on the table.’

The United States is calling on Egypt to use its sway with the Palestinians to try to end the violence from Gaza, a top U.S. official said Thursday, adding Hamas must stop its rocket attacks on Israel.

‘We ask Egypt to use its influence in the region to help de-escalate the situation,’ deputy State Department spokesman Mark Toner said, adding that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had spoken with her Egyptian counterpart.

Egypt’s prime minister is to visit Gaza Friday.” Read more.

Related: Muslim Brotherhood Mobilizes for Hamas – “… the Muslim Brotherhood government in Egypt is doubling down on its support for Hamas, Gaza’s ruling terrorist organization, and has withdrawn its ambassador to Israel. U.S.-based Islamists and their non-Muslim allies can be counted on in the ensuing days to pressure the administration to throw Israel under the bus in favor of the Islamist rulers of Egypt. If Egypt takes action, the administration will have to choose between its relationship with Israel or its relationship with the Muslim Brotherhood. There is no middle ground to straddle.” Read more.

Report: First Three Gaza Missiles Hit Tel Aviv, Israel Drafts 30,000 Reservists

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Debka – “The first three Palestinian missiles reached the Tel Aviv conurbation, Gush Dan, Thursday night, Nov. 15. shortly after a long-range missile exploded in Rishon Lezion southeast of Tel Aviv and sirens sounded in outlying towns of Holon, Ness Ziona, Gan Raveh and Beer Yacov. None report casualties or damage. Defense Minister Ehud Barak has ordered 30,000 army reservists drafted. The IDF spokesmen earlier reported units of the elite paratroop and Givati Brigades were mustering outside the Gaza Strip on the second day of Israel’s counter-terror operation Pillar of Cloud.

From debkafile’s earlier report Thursday: As the rockets kept coming through Wednesday night – and the first three fatalities Thursday morning, Nov. 15 – the cautious lift in Israeli spirits generated by the death of Ahmed Jabari, who fashioned Hamas into a paramilitary machine of terror, and the destruction of dozens of missile sites in Gaza, gave way to resignation for a long haul before southern Israel is free of its decade-long rocket nightmare.

Thursday morning, a rocket from Gaza killed three Israelis in Kiryat Malachi. By then, some 120 rockets – mostly targeting the major towns of Beersheba and Ashdod, but also smaller locations – had followed Jabari’s death. Iron Dome intercepted 27.The first reserve units had been mobilized for possible ground action in Gaza to supplement the air offensive against the Palestinian missile arsenal.

But Operation Pillar of Cloud’s first part showed a favorable balance: Palestinian missile fire was as erratic as ever, although intense; Iron Dome filtered out the rockets aimed at Israel’s major towns; Israeli casualties were relatively low though painful; and the enemy in Gaza was decapitated – for now.

But most of all, the Palestinians and their allies in Tehran and Hizballah suddenly discovered that the old IDF had come roaring back.

In the only former major Israeli operation in Gaza, Cast Lead (late 2008, early 2009), the IDF was slow, unwieldy and unfocused. Its counter-terror offensive was foreshortened by heavy diplomatic pressure before achieving anything, owing to the government’s lack of resolve. In the 2006 Lebanon War, the army was stalled before developing an effective tactical offensive.

The IDF of 2012 is in a different class, recalling its rapid-fire performance in the Six-Day War then fought on multiple fronts.

In just a few hours late Wednesday, Nov. 14, Pillar of Cloud achieved more than Cast Lead managed in weeks: It was driven by clockwork, integrated intelligence by the Shin Bet and Military Intelligence, precise, surgical air force strikes and a command-and-control with fast reflexes which recalled Israel’s military skills of 45 years ago.” Read more.

Mexico City Residents Rattled After Strong 6.0 Magnitude Earthquake

11/15/2012 1 comment

This is hot off the heels of yesterday’s strong 6.1 magnitude earthquake in Chile …

LiveScience – “An earthquake of preliminary magnitude 6.0 struck early today in southern Mexico, according to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS).

The temblor’s epicenter was 6 miles (9 km) east of Tlalchapa, Mexico, and 107 miles (173 km) southwest of Mexico City. It originated 38 miles (60 km) deep and struck at 2:20 a.m. local time (0920 UTC), the USGS reports.

Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard and the governors of Mexican states surrounding the quake’s epicenter posted messages on Twitter saying there were no reports of major damage.

Earthquakes of this size can cause significant damage, especially with poorly built structures. Even well designed buildings can be damaged or, in some cases, destroyed depending on the severity of the quake and a building’s proximity to the epicenter. Earthquakes of this size are sometimes followed by significant aftershocks.” Read more.

Categories: Earthquakes

Israel: Residents Scramble For Bomb Shelters Along Coastal Cities As Nation Inches Closer To All Out War With Hamas, Islamic Jihad Terrorists

11/15/2012 Leave a comment
Baby injured in Kiryat Malachi

Baby Injured in Kiryat Malachi

Fox News – “JERUSALEM – Israel moved closer to an all-out ground war with Hamas Thursday, as Israeli planes, tanks and gunboats pounded suspected militant positions in Gaza in retaliation for another day of Hamas rocket attacks that left at least three Israelis dead.

Tel Aviv residents say they heard an explosion following an air-raid alert across the city, raising fears of a Gaza rocket strike on Israel’s commercial capital.

Israeli authorities were trying to determine where the rocket may have landed on Thursday. Eli Bean, the head of Israel’s rescue service, says no injuries have been reported.

Israeli military spokesman Brig. Gen. Yoav Mordechai says nothing landed on the ground, raising the possibility it fell in the sea.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told reporters on Thursday that Israel could no longer stand repeated attacks on its southern towns. He said that Israel has “made it clear” it won’t tolerate continued rocket fire on its civilians.

Earlier, Netanyahu had declared, ‘If there is a need, the military is prepared to expand the operation. We will continue to do everything to protect our citizens.'” Read more.

Silent Night: Christmas Lights Go Out In Europe, ‘If It Doesn’t Stop, It’s Clear As Day Where It Will All End’

11/15/2012 6 comments

By Bruce Bawer – “The lights are going out all over Europe. The Christmas tree lights, that is. Not all of them all at once, mind you, but one at a time – one here, one there, one Christmas season after another.

Just the other day, for example, came the news about a co-op apartment building in Kokkedal, Denmark.

Not long ago, the co-op, which has a considerable number of Muslim residents, spent 60,000 kroner (about $10,000) to celebrate the holiday of Eid. Three days afterwards, however, when the co-op board, consisting of five Muslims and four unbelievers, got together to decide whether to spend approximately 5000 kroner on a Christmas tree – a tradition in the building – they voted the proposition down. Although a ‘private donor’ later stepped in to pay for a tree, the news of the co-op board’s decision had meantime made the national news, drawing two journalists from Denmark’s TV2 who, after making their way to Kokkedal last weekend to investigate the story, found themselves under attack by a couple of dozen masked individuals who threw bricks and cobblestones at their van and called them ‘neo-Nazis.’

The tidings from Kokkedal were unpleasant enough. But then came the news that the traditional Christmas tree in the Grote Markt (Market Square) in Brussels has now also become a thing of the past. In interviews with the media, Brussels councilwoman Bianca Debaets expressed her suspicions that municipal authorities had put the kibosh on the tree for religious reasons. (Brussels, it should be noted, is at present 25% Muslim. And climbing.)

At first, Brussels city officials vehemently denied that the decision to banish the Christmas tree in the Grote Markt had any religious basis. Perish the thought! Instead, they sought to convey the message that Christmas trees are old-fashioned – yesterday’s news. And they made a strenuous effort to stir up public excitement over the fact that, instead of a tiresome old traditional tree, the Grote Markt will be the site of a cool, hip, up-to-date ‘light sculpture’ that will suggest the shape of a tree, but that, instead of branches and needles and such, will be composed of strobe lights and other high-tech electronic paraphernalia.

It will, in short, be a trendy, twenty-first-century celebration of – well, nothing in particular, exactly. Certainly not Christmas. One thing that was made perfectly clear to the Belgian populace was that this newfangled installation would not allude in any way, shape, or form to the Christian holiday, but would instead be characterized as a ‘winter’ decoration. Indeed, the Brussels city government took the trouble to issue a directive ordering that accounts of the new downtown ‘sculpture’ should not include any reference to Christmas.

One news report described this postmodernist artifact as follows Read more…

Egypt: Prominent Salafist Preacher Denounces Internet As ‘The Gravest Of Major Sins’

11/15/2012 Leave a comment

The Word Wide Web has apparently replaced “shirk” as the new unpardonable sin in Egypt. According to Islam, Muslim men are inherently unable to exercise self-control when it comes to women and unacceptable behavior. Because in the Muslim world, the victim is always at fault. Until, of course, the “victim” is the Muslim world …

By Katerina Nikolas – “A prominent Egyptian Salafist preacher has denounced the Internet as the gravest of major sins, posing a threat to Islamic societies. He accused the west of deliberately using the Internet to export pornography to Islamic and Arab countries.

Egyptians are frequent visitors to pornographic websites, with five pornographic sites amongst the top 100 searched sites in the country, Al Arabiya reported. Salafist preacher Sheikh Muhammad Hussein Yaqob has now issued a fatwa against the Internet, calling it haram (forbidden).

His wrath is not only limited to the Internet. He considers love outside marriage, which he describes as ‘adultery of the heart,’ as equal a sin as the Internet. Al Arabiya reported he said ‘In Islam, marriage is the only lawful man-woman relationship.’

He went on to say that the Internet is the biggest challenge facing the Muslim world, calling on Muslim youths to stop their ‘blind imitation of the West and stand firm against the Western cultural invasion that aims at changing the identity of the Ummah (nation).’

Even as Yaqob issued his fatwa, the Egyptian Public Prosecutor had already ordered a general ban on all porn sites in Egypt. His move followed the release of statistics showing ‘Egypt ranks second in Google’s hit list of sex-related searches among countries worldwide’ according to Global Voices.

In spite of Yaqob’s decree concerning marriage, Internet searches for gay porn remain rife in Egypt, along with searches for animal sex. The Prosecutor’s ban on Internet porn sites has raised alarm among some Egyptians that further Internet censorship may follow.” Source – Digital Journal.

Ireland: Mystery Surrounds Cause Of 50,000 Dead Starfish Found Washed Ashore On Lissadell Beach

11/15/2012 2 comments

By Pete Thomas – “It was a surreal and somewhat ghostly sight: that of perhaps 50,000 starfish that somehow had come ashore overnight, en masse, and perished on a secluded beach in Ireland. The Belfast Telegraph reports that harsh weather might have been responsible for last week’s peculiar and mysterious event, on Lissadell Beach.

Bill Crowe, a marine biologist at Sligo Institute of Technology, theorized that the starfish (also called sea stars) might have been lifted ashore while feeding on mussel beds in the nearshore tidal zone. They were spread over nearly 500 feet of coastline.

‘The most likely explanation is that they were feeding on mussels, but it is a little strange that none of them were attached to mussels when they were washed in,’ Crowe said.

A toxic algae bloom would seem another possible explanation, but no other type of marine life was affected. Only starfish, mostly adult size, were found on the beach.

Equally mysterious is that virtually all of the starfish were dead, meaning they had succumbed surprisingly quickly after coming or being delivered ashore.

Other experts agreed that the most likely explanation is stormy weather, and perhaps high surf that deposited the starfish on the beach.

‘They turned up almost certainly as a result of an exceptional storm event,’ said Tim Roderick, an officer with Ireland’s National Parks and Wildlife Service. ‘A storm hit the seabed where these sub-tidal animals were and lifted them up and washed them ashore.’

The bizarre incident, like a smaller-scale die-off that occurred earlier this year on another beach in Ireland, remains under investigation.” Read more.

Categories: Mass Animal Deaths
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