UNESCO: The Temple Mount Is Sacred Only To Muslims

October 21, 2016

img585890BICOM reports that the executive board of UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organisation) officially on 18th Oct. 2016 approved a controversial motion which  failed to recognise any Jewish connection to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. The executive board ratified the resolution, which was approved last Thursday by member states in Paris. The vote was 24 in favor (including Iran and Sudan), 6 against (including USA, UK, Germany, Netherlands), 26 abstaining, and 2 absent.

The original resolution, which six countries including the UK opposed, was submitted by the Palestinian delegation with the support of Egypt, Algeria, Morocco, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar and Sudan. It alleges “Israeli escalating aggressions and illegal measures… against the freedom of worship and Muslims’ access to their Holy Site Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al Sharif”.

Although the motion acknowledges that Jerusalem is holy to the three monotheistic religions, the section dealing specifically with the Temple Mount says the site is sacred only to Muslims, failing to acknowledge its significance to Jews. It refers to the Western Wall, the world’s most significant Jewish prayer site, by the Arabic term Buraq Plaza, while quotation marks pointedly accompany the phrase “Western Wall”, the Jewish name for the site.

Following Thursday’s vote, the motion was condemned by leaders across Israel’s political spectrum, who often accuse the UN of an institutional bias against Israel. The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova also signalled her disappointment at Thursday’s vote, saying: “The heritage of Jerusalem is indivisible, and each of its communities has a right to the explicit recognition of their history.”

Israel’s Ambassador to UNESCO Carmel Shama-Hacohen said: “We have moved forward a step-and-a-half toward dismantling the automatic majority that the Palestinians and the Arab states have against Israel.”

nimeton-105UN Watch is a non-governmental organization based in Geneva whose mandate is to monitor the performance of the United Nations by the yardstick of its own Charter. UN Watch condemned UNESCO’s “historical revisionism” which erases Jewish and Christian ties to Jerusalem and casts doubt on the connection between Judaism and the ancient city’s Temple Mount and Western Wall. At the same time, UN Watch said the inflammatory text’s failure to obtain a majority was a moral victory. The amount of countries abstaining increased by seven from the 17 who supported a similar text in April, with France, India, Argentina, Spain, Sweden, Sri Lanka, Guinea and Togo shifting their votes from yes to abstain.


The resolution

The resolution was drafted by the Palestinians but officially submitted by Sudan’s genocidal regime together with human rights abusers Algeria, Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, and Qatar.

Notable features of the text according UN Watch :

  • The resolution “decries,” “condemns,” “deplores” and “deprecates” a long list of alleged Israeli infringements of Palestinian rights. The text calls Israel “the Occupying Power.”

  • The text omits any mention of the hundreds of violent Palestinian attacks against Jews in Jerusalem, organized Palestinian attempts to terrorize Jews visiting Jewish holy sites in the city, or incitement to such attacks by the Palestinian Authority and Hamas

  • The decision “strongly condemns” the alleged “escalating Israeli aggressions and illegal measures” against “the freedom of worship and Muslims’ access to their Holy Site Al-Aqṣa Mosque/Al-Ḥaram Al-Sharif”

  • The text “firmly deplores” the “continuous storming of Al-Aqṣa Mosque/Al-Ḥaram Al-Sharif by Israeli right-wing extremists and uniformed forces,” and calls on Israel to stop “provocative abuses”malaysia

  • The resolution refers to the Temple Mount only with the Islamic and Arabic names of “Al-Aqsa Mosque/Al-Haram Al-Sharif.”

  • The Western Wall is described using scare quotes as “Western Wall Plaza”, to denote disbelief (Arts.16, 18); other Israeli sites are described as the “so called Liba” and “so called Kedem Center.” (Art. 16)

  • The resolution describes the sacred Jewish sites of the Tomb of Rachel in Bethlehem and Hebron’s Tomb of the Patriarchs (revered as the burial place of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob) as “two Palestinian sites.” The text “deeply regrets” Israel’s refusal to remove these sites from its national heritage list.

  • The resolution removes the April text’s wild conspiracy charge that Israel was “planting Jewish fake graves” (Art. 14 of April 2016 resolution) in Muslim cemeteries.

  • A major story today is the decision of France to abstain. With UNESCO based in Paris, the French government’s strategy has traditionally been to distinguish itself as a leading figure in the Arab-led anti-Israel bloc. In 2011, France aggressively lobbied against the U.S. and Israel for UNESCO to admit “Palestine” as a member, a catastrophic decision that crippled UNESCO’s finances as Washington cut funding. In 2012, French voting was more anti-Israel than even the regimes of Syria, Russia and Venezuela. It would seem, however, that the outrage generated from its April support for such a rabid text prompted French leaders to express regret, influencing today’s policy virage.


“It was a victory for terrorism.”

Hillel Neuer, executive director of UN Watch, on the #UNESCO #Jerusalem vote | TV interview on i24News:

and more


UN bias

“The Arab States do not want to solve the refugee problem. They want to keep it as an open sore, as an affront to the United Nations and as a weapon against Israel. Arab leaders don’t give a damn whether the refugees live or die.” – Alexander Galloway, director of UNRWA in Jordan, 1952

Unfortunately UNESCO is only the latest example about UN bias against Israel. Despite being the only democracy in the Middle East, Israel routinely faces more criticism and condemnation at the United Nations than any other country, including those that systematically kill their citizens or deny them the most basic of human rights. Even today, both the General Assembly and Security Council continue to pass one-sided resolutions that single out and condemn the Jewish State. Additionally, an overwhelmingly powerful bloc led by the Arab nations promotes a narrow and slanderous agenda meant to isolate Israel that has met little resistance.

emergencyssxfoiIsrael was the only country in the world singled out as a violator of “health rights” during the UN World Health Organization’s (WHO) annual assembly in May 2015. Although Israeli hospitals provide health care for injured Syrians and Palestinians daily, the WHO decided to turn a blind eye to health crises in Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Iran, Iraq, Libya, or North Korea, and instead single out Israel as a major violator of health rights.

The UNHRC (UN Human rights agency) closed their month-long session on March 24, 2016, by proclaiming Israel the most egregious violator of human rights in the world: issuing five council resolutions on Israel and only one each on the human rights situations in Syria, North Korea, and Iran. Frequent human rights violators such as Saudi Arabia and China were not mentioned in a single resolution. The most egregious example of anti-Israel bias at the UNHRC is the yearly discussion of agenda item 7. Agenda item 7 mandates that at each UNHRC session, Israel’s record of human rights must be debated. No other country in the world has a yearly reoccuring agenda item dedicated to it.

The best example about UN bias might be UNRWA;  some background about this in appendix below.

In his speech to open the 61st General Assembly of the United Nations in September 2006, then-Secretary General Kofi Anan admitted that Israel is often unfairly judged by the international body and its various organizations. “On one side, supporters of Israel feel that it is harshly judged by standards that are not applied to its enemies,” Annan said. “And too often this is true, particularly in some UN bodies.” (Source: Jewish Virtual Library )


Appendix: UNRWA – the never-ending mission


At least two aspects explain why there are still Palestinian refugees after more than six decades:

  • First is Arab leaders’ recalcitrance to accept their brethren and refusing to absorb the Palestinian refugees.
  • Second the United Nations created a separate agency – UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) – with unique principles and criteria.

Between 1930 to today, we probably have 60 million+ people around the world that have seen forced transfer from their homes as a result of conflict, many of these at the hands of terribly egregious aggressors. One agency, the UNHCR (UN Refugee Agency) has handled nearly all of these refugees. Its goal is to as quickly as possible resettle these refugees in new places, and move on to the next disaster unfolding.


Related to the Israeli-Arab conflict. Between 1948 and 1967, some 800,000 Palestinian Arabs displaced and 800,000 Jews displaced out of Arab countries. From the start, the Palestinians were dealt with differently than all other refugees. While all others came under the administration of a series of global organizations that eventually became the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the Palestinians received their own relief organization: the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees (UNRWA). The entire set of criteria for qualifying as a Palestinian refugee was (and still is) significantly different than the criteria applicable to all others. While the UNHCR worked to provide durable solutions for refugees under its administration, Arab leaders intentionally kept the Palestinians in stateless limbo by refusing to accept any solution that did not involve than the complete destruction of the State of Israel.

According UNRWA criteria the refugee status is given not only to the original refugees whose normal place of residence was Palestine between June 1946 and May 1948, who lost their homes as a result of the 1948 Arab-Israeli conflict AND their descendants in the male line. So it isn’t just the first generation that is entitled to this aid, as is the norm for all other refugees the United Nations helps, now the fifth generation is also entitled.

In 2014, the U.S. State Department gave UNRWA $400 million, the European Union gave $139 million, and the United Kingdom gave $95 million. The agency’s teachers, principals and other staff are spreading racial hatred, anti-Semitism and support for terrorism, as documented in three recent reports by UN Watch, the latest on Nov. 30, 2015, which have identified more than 30 individual perpetrators. While UNRWA claims to have temporarily suspended employees — whom it refuses to name — minimal accountability requires that those who poison the minds of children be permanently removed from their posts. UNRWA has also failed to even condemn any of the perpetrators, and has been completely silent on the matter in its media statements and on its website.

Although UNRWA was established in 1948 as a temporary institution, more than six decades on it still exists, larger than eve. Indeed UNRWA is now the UN’s largest entity with over 30,000 employees, it makes UNRWA “too big to fail,”. Through November 2003, 101 of the 681 UN resolutions on the Middle East conflict referred directly to Palestinian refugees. Not one mentioned the Jewish refugees from Arab countries.

One motivation to agency’s refugee definations might be economic aspect. An article ”Palestinians Refugees Forever” in Haaretz gives following background:

UNRWA states that the Palestinians are occupied – indefinitely. UNRWA has financial and political interests in maintaining this fiction: as long as the Palestinians are refugees, UNRWA is in business. Of the 30,000 people that UNRWA employs, the vast majority are Palestinian: UNRWA is the largest single employer of Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank. Contrast this to the UN High Commission for Refugees, that only employs 5-6,000 people globally, and which focuses far more clearly on resettlement and rehabilitation of refugees and building new lives, and not on maintaining services that prop up the status quo. (Source Haaretz )


Israel vs Palestine – Selected Videos

September 23, 2016

Here is a collection of videos related to Israel-Palestine conflict, from short clips to movie length documentaries. At the end of this selection one can find videos related to Israel history and some highlights of Israeli defence.

Movie length:


Special features


TOP 10 most powerful weapons of the Israel military

Resetting Russian-Turkish Energy Relations

September 14, 2016

2016-02-18-17-22-21thediplomatAnkara’s tensions with Moscow in the aftermath of the downing of a Russian fighter jet on 24 November 2015 close to Turkish borders could very well influence whether the two countries further pursue the building of TurkStream [Turkish Stream aka ex-South Stream] or not, however from brink of the war, now it seems that the both parties have an interest to reset relationship.

According Natural Gas World magazine Turkey has awarded Russian gas exporter Gazprom the first permits it requires for the development of the 31.5bn m³/yr Turkish Streamgas pipeline via Turkey. According to the statement 7th Sep. 2016 Gazprom has received the permits “through appropriate diplomatic channels” following a meeting last week between Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller and Turkish energy minister Berat Albayrak. Gazprom referred to the meeting as having seen the two sides reach an agreement to finalise quickly all the necessary procedures for initiating the project and quoted Miller as stating: “The issuance of first permits is good news for Gazprom. This move of the Turkish side reflects the interest of Turkey’s government in the Turkish Stream project and marks the transition to its practical implementation,” Gazprom said.

Last year Gazprom completed an environmental impact assessment (EIA) report for the offshore and landfall sections of the new TurkStream project which was submitted to Turkey’s environment ministry for vetting. No EIA report has yet been submitted for the overland section of the line owing to a succession of bureaucratic and political delays, stemming from the need for the two countries to conclude an intergovernmental agreement for the line before they finalise the overland route. Turkish media reported recently that Gazprom has started surveying land in Thrace.

TurkStream as a non-Western version of the ‘Southern Corridor’ is taking shape in EU/Eurasian energy game and this new arrangement has the potential to reshape the geopolitics of the entire Eastern Hemisphere. Russia’s trade with Turkey involves the sale of Russian gas and investment in Turkish nuclear facilities. Limiting either of these would hurt Russia as much as Turkey. Both countries have a history of solve these types of crises, especially when it comes to economic issues. For example during the Crimea crisis, Ankara had expressed its worries about the Crimean Tatars, but the issue was not obstacle to begin negotiations with Russia for TurkStream.

Reuters reported that Russia plans to sign an agreement with Turkey next month on the implementation of the TurkStream gas export pipeline project, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak was quoted as saying on 10th Sep. 2016: “The inter-governmental agreement and road map are currently being reconciled, the process of agreeing on the final text is underway. We plan to proceed to the signing in October,” Novak said.


Gas, nuclear etc. business

Turkey is the biggest customer of OAO Gazprom–Russia’s state owned gas monopoly–after Germany, and more than 50% of Turkey’s electricity production is dependent on imported Russian natural gas. Additionally, the two countries have shared intentions to build a new pipeline–the Turkish Stream pipeline, which Moscow wants to build to deliver gas to Europe, bypassing Ukraine–after Russian President Vladimir Putin shelved the South Stream Pipeline last December [2015].

Turkey buys close to 30 bcm of gas from Russia each year, and this year Gazprom can expect to secure around $9 billion from its sales to Turkey. Natural gas projects are not the only energy projects as currently, Russia’s state-owned nuclear energy company OAO Rosatom is building a four-reactor nuclear power plant project reactor inside Turkish territory at Akkuyu, in the Turkish Province of Mersin, now scheduled for 2019. Rosatom has already spent some $3bn on developing the $22 bn project and also needs the project as reference.

Moscow has spent some $2 for the pipes originally ordered for the South Stream project that Turkish Stream replaced. Some $8-10 bn is still needed on delivering the 900-km pipe and its 180-km onward extension to Turkey’s border with Greece. However delay might be wise now during low gas prices and uncertainties as to how Turkish Stream would actually be able to deliver gas to mainstream European customers beyond Turkey.

From the Russian point of view, rapprochement with Turkey anchored on deepening economic cooperation – over TurkStream, $20 billion Russian nuclear plant, tourism, etc. – not only promotes mutually beneficial business ties but also creates powerful interest groups in Turkey who are stakeholders in the strategic ties with Russia. (Turkish business groups played an influential role to encourage Erdogan’s reconciliation with Putin.)

On the other hand, Erdogan’s political agenda is also critically dependent on continued success in delivering on a buoyant economy. The Turkish people experienced a level of prosperity during his rule that they never knew before, which explains the 52% mandate they gave him in the last election.


Wider context and Tesla

Russian President Vladimir Putin said earlier that his country plans to increase its natural gas output over the coming decades while also aiming for a 13% share of the global LNG market. “Russia has made huge investments in exploration, refining, and transportation of gas and holds a great share of supplying security. The country plans to increase its output to 855 billion cubic metres per year by 2035,” he said, adding that Russia plans to export 128 billion cubic metres per year of gas to Asia in future.

From the perspective of European Union the Projects of Common Interest (PCI) as envisaged by the European Commission in Brussels, clearly aim to interconnect the Balkans and the surrounding regions to facilitate the emergence of hubs and new transit routes. One of the approved PCIs is the Tesla route, a pipeline that aims to connect Greece with Austria, traversing the ex-Yugoslav states and Hungary. The project is actually a spur of the TurkStream one that is planned to cross the Black Sea towards the European part of Turkey and then reach up to Northern Greece. Despite that, the TurkStream pipeline project has not been included as a PCI.

Ο Αγωγός Balkan StreamIt might be that Tesla has been included because it could serve as a possible link to the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP), rather than the Turkish Stream pipeline. However since TAP has been designed for smaller quantities of gas than those that would be needed if Tesla becomes an integral part of it, TAP’s business plan will have to change dramatically.

Tesla project is extremely important energy investment for the participating countries. The companies drafting the preparatory work, such as DESFA, FGSZ, GA-MA, and Srbijagas, have all been major clients of Russian giant Gazprom’s gas for decades, so the source of gas will be from Russia. The pipeline aims to terminate in the Baumgarten gas hub in Austria and it will have a reverse flow capacity, planned to be completed by 2019. Reverse flow is a major component in energy security considerations. One should take into account the Nord Stream-II pipeline, which aims to greatly increase direct gas supplies from Russia to Germany that could then, quite easily, flow to the Baumgarten hub.


Geopolitical trivia

One day after NATO preemptively reminded Turkey that it is still a NATO alliance member and advising Ankara that “Turkey’s NATO membership is not in question”, Turkey had some more choice words for its military allies. , Turkey foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu told Turkish’s NTV television that the country “may seek other options outside NATO for defense industry cooperation, although its first option is always cooperation with its NATO allies.” (Cited by Reuters )

And more …

Turkey’s Gunes newspaper  reported that as part of the discussion between Putin and Erdogan on 9th Aug. 2016, the Turkish president suggested to abandon the US dollar in bilateral trade between Turkey and Russia, and instead to transact directly in lira and rubles. This would “benefit both Russia and Turkey”, Erdogan allegedly said, adding that this would relieve the lira from the USD’s upward pressure.


Relations between Turkey and Russia were normalized when President Recep Erdogan and President Vladimir Putin met in St. Petersburg on 9th August 2016. President Erdogan said at a joint news conference with President Putin that building the gas pipeline quickly was a priority. Relationships continued to develop further during their recent meeting in the G20 Summit in Hangzhou/China. The fresh impetus to bilateral relations and joint projects primarily relates to the construction of the TurkStream pipeline, which may become one of the key elements of a new gas pipeline infrastructure in Europe.

Today – unlike year ago – Turkey is interested in connecting to the pipeline to Southeast Europe; this change is reflected in Turkey’s desire to strengthen relations not just with Russia, but also Greece and other Balkan countries. Turkey is even prepared to make substantial financial concessions to Russia, including paying for half of the pipeline’s construction as President Erdoğan has suggested sharing the costs for the Turkish part of the project.

Athens is closely watching Russia-Turkey talks on a pipeline that will bring Russian gas to the Turkish border with Greece, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said Sunday 10th September 2016: ”We are closely watching negotiations and on-again, off-again relations between Russia and Turkey. We are glad to see those ties mended,” Tsipras told reporters at the international fair in Thessaloniki. Meanwhile, Greece is preparing to make a case for another gas link to Russia before the European Commission in September.” Greece hopes to begin talks with the European Commission next week on the construction of the South European Pipeline that would deliver Russian gas to Europe, Greek Energy Minister Panos Skourletis said Sunday.

In Balkans Moscow’s object of focus is the Central Balkans of Republika Srpska, Serbia, and the Republic of Macedonia, with the latter two envisioned to serve as the crucial transit states for the Tesla pipeline. Russia’s relations with Greece are already very friendly, though the present relationship owes itself more to Athens’ desire for economically reliable partners.

On the other hand US and EU Diplomacy are alarmed by the new developments that occur in the triangle between Russia-Greece-Turkey with the notable inclusion in it of European companies. The Turkish-Russian rapprochement might open the door to more exports of Russian gas to Europe, whereas EU (and US) would hope to reduce heavy dependence on Russian supplies. In addition TurkStream will kill EU’s trans-Caspian pipeline projects bypassing Russia, diminishes Russia’s dependence on Ukraine as transit country for gas exports to Europe and all this instead of European market sourcing non-Russian energy, such as increased LNG supplies from the US.

Turkey and Russia have shared interests in the geopolitical space surrounding the two countries. On the one hand, Turkey’s cooperation is crucial to Russian efforts to stabilize the Syrian situation while on the other hand TurkStream cements the EU market on a long-term footing for Russian energy exports.

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2nd Lebanon War – Lessons Learned

August 5, 2016

Nimetön (103)A decade has passed since the Second Lebanon War in 2006. This time interval makes it possible to analyze the lessons learned of that war.

Israel government’s failure to achieve its self-declared war aims, the relatively high Israeli death toll – 120 Israeli soldiers and 43 civilians – and the heavy impact of Hezbollah rocket fire on the civilian population in Northern Israel, shocked and angered the Israeli public. Meanwhile Israel faced international condemnation, accused of using ‘disproportionate’ force in its military operations in Lebanon. With many Israelis demanding the resignation of the prime minister, defence minister and IDF chief of staff, the government set up a commission of inquiry chaired by retired judge Eliyahu Winograd.


2nd Lebanon War

The Lebanon and Israel War went from the 12th July 2006 to 14th August 2006. It was a 34 day military conflict in Lebanon and northern Israel. The principal parties were the Israeli military and Hezbollah paramilitary. Hezbollah was responsible for a raid in 2006 on a border post in Northern Israel in which two Israeli soldiers were taken captive. The abductions sparked an Israeli military campaign against Lebanon to which Hezbollah responded by firing rockets across the Lebanese border into Israel.

On the morning of July 12, 2006, two Israeli soldiers were kidnapped and eight others killed when Hezbollah fighters carried out a surprise cross-border raid, thus effectively ending the sixyear period of relative quiet that had existed along the Israel-Lebanon border following the unilateral withdrawal of the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) from Lebanon in May 2000.

What later became known as the Second Lebanon War ended 34 days later on August 14th 2006, when the United Nations Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1701 – which called for the disarming of Hezbollah, the withdrawal of its troops from the border with Israel and the deployment of the Lebanese Army in the southern part of the state – went into effect.


The Winograd Commission

The Winograd Commission’s final report [over 600 pages in Hebrew, cfr summary in English] on the government’s handling of the Second Lebanon War referred to it as “a great and grave missed opportunity” with its harshest criticism aimed at the military and political leadership. In particular, the commission found “serious failings and flaws in the quality of preparedness, decision-making and performance in the IDF high command… [and] serious failings and flaws in the lack of strategic thinking and planning, in both the political and military echelons,” noting that the “inadequacies of preparedness and strategic and operative planning go back long before” the war. Among its many criticisms, the commission found that the cabinet had failed to formulate clear objectives and policy options.

Based on an extensive range of documents and testimonies, the most prominent of which was the report issued by the Winograd Commission, Israel’s objectives for the operation may be summed up as follows: to bring about a change in the security situation and lift the terrorist threat imposed by Hezbollah out of Lebanon on the State of Israel by devising new rules and changing the balance of deterrence vis-à-vis Hezbollah; to restrict Hezbollah’s freedom of operation, to inflict a substantial blow to its capabilities and status; to enhance (Israel’s) regional deterrence by demonstrating the price of aggression against Israel; to motivate Lebanon to apply its sovereignty in its entire territory and impose restrictions on Hezbollah, including the removal of Hezbollah’s posts along the border followed by the Lebanese Army deploying in southern Lebanon; to call in international involvement in order to enforce the relevant UN resolutions and the ceasefire mechanism (based on UN Resolution 1559) and finally – to create the conditions for the return of the abducted soldiers.

Several constraints and restrictive conditions were specified for the operation, notably: keeping casualties among the combat elements to an absolute minimum; avoiding a large-scale war in Lebanon, particularly against Syria; no Israeli presence to remain in Lebanon after the end of the confrontation; maintaining Israel’s international legitimacy and maintaining the legitimacy of the operation among the Israeli public.

The aspect of combined-arms operations and interoperability turned out to be one of the primary failures in the employment of force during this operation. Prior to the operation, IAF had not attended any in-depth brainstorming and planning sessions with the General Staff or IDF Northern Command. During the operation in Lebanon, each arm executed its missions almost independently. The missions had been planned separately and the options for combined-arms operations involving a supporting element and an element being supported were hardly utilized.

One of the mission categories that had not been planned and was not sufficiently pursued is target acquisition and “hunting” during the actual combat operations, despite the fact that at the end of the fighting, this mission category recorded a high level of achievement relative to the expectations. The factor that made a decisive contribution to the successful execution of this mission category was the massive employment of the IAF’s UAV layout. [Source: Israel Defense ]

The intelligence aspect

old Aman logoThe crux role of intelligence was evident with sc “Night of the Fajr Rockets” and the success of Operation Specific Gravity in which IAF destroyed dozens of Fajr medium-range rocket launchers. These rockets had been concealed in houses and were a part of one of Hezbollah’s top secret projects. The successful elimination of those rocket launchers was made possible by exceptional intelligence achievements and deep penetration. This accomplishment led to distress among the ranks of Hezbollah, as thorough backtracking and self-examination were required in order to attempt and understand how Israeli intelligence had managed to penetrate to such depths.

According Israel Defense one of the members of the Winograd Commission stated: “The problem with the War did not concern the intelligence aspect.” This is a substantial statement, as the intelligence balance during the Second Lebanon War was indeed mixed and complex and could not be defined in terms of success or failure, but rather as a collection of numerous failures in various activities alongside significant success stories. To make things even more complex, gaps and even tensions and differences between some intelligence elements and senior officers of the IDF General Staff were clearly evident.

The report refers to two distinct periods: the intelligence preparations between the year 2000 and the outbreak of the War, and the performance of the military intelligence during the war. With regard to the aspect of “Operational Intelligence” (strategic intelligence) as per the Commission’s definition, “The accomplishments of the intelligence analysis activity at the General Staff and Northern Command in the period prior to the war were substantial.” Referring to the interface between the intelligence and the political-defense echelon and the decision-making process during the War, the Commission had some criticism that referred mainly to the gap between the potential and the actual ability of the intelligence to influence the decision makers and the actual occurrences: “Apparently, one area where the intelligence community had a more substantial ability to influence the War was in the context of the decision-making process on July 12 and the first few days thereafter, including the first few days of the War. This time, more than at any other time, when the professional echelons of the IDF Intelligence Directorate had the key to cracking the enemy’s riddle, they failed to exploit it opposite the military and political leaders. While the intelligence concept was generally correct, failures occurred in the process of submitting it to the leaders.”

In this context, Major (res.) Amir Dahan, a judge in civilian life as well as in IDF and a deputy commander of a reconnaissance intelligence company in his secondary capacity, stated in an article he published in the periodical “Ma’arachot” after the War, that one phenomenon encountered again during the War involved the fact that excellent had been available at the brigade and battalion level, but that intelligence almost never reached the company and platoon level and the individual troopers, and the intelligence that they did receive was faulty. [Source:  Israel Defense ]


The outcome 10 years after

Nimetön (102)According a fresh BICOM Strategic Assessment the lessons learned since 2nd Lebanon War are following:


On the eve of the tenth anniversary of the Second Lebanon War, a future war with Hezbollah is considered the most threatening scenario for the IDF due to the organisation’s significant military capability.

In light of the failure of an ‘enhanced’ UN force to prevent Hezbollah rearming, Israel is sceptical of relying on international forces to defend its borders, a policy that has consequences for the security component of negotiations over the establishment of a Palestinian state.

The IDF’s new security doctrine reflects a focus on non-state actors and asymmetric warfare, and establishes new military and strategic approaches as well as redefined standards of what victory means. IDF’s

Israel’s political leadership has failed to fully implement recommendations for improving the national security decision-making process that were exposed during the war.


Israel’s security doctrine was altered by the Second Lebanon War

Since its establishment in 1948, Israel’s security doctrine has been based on three strategic pillars, often referred to as the three “D’s” – deterrence, early detection, and the decisive defeat of the enemy (military decision).

Yet the 2006 Lebanon War marked a turning point in Israel’s strategic priorities, with the threat of engaging in armed conflict with conventional armies shifting. Instead, Israel’s military and political leadership were forced to grapple with developing a response to asymmetric conflicts against actors who, while being non-states, possessed the military capacity and strength akin to regular armed forces, and had no ‘political address’ with whom to engage in postwar diplomacy. Moreover, Israel’s inability to militarily defeat these non-state actors enabled them to capitalise on a narrative that they won the war, as Hezbollah claimed in 2006. In light of the Second Lebanon War, two of the classic pillars of Israel’s traditional security concept – deterrence and decisive victory, both of which were further challenged in subsequent conflicts in Gaza – underwent a radical transformation.

Israel military doctrine

New national security strategy

The IDF has learned from its failures in the Second Lebanon War and from subsequent wars between Israel and Hamas in Gaza. The Israel Defense Force (IDF) Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkot published on 13th August 2015 a document outlining IDF strategy, including the threats facing Israel and plans to combat them. This is first time- in 60 years – since 1950s when Israeli PM David Ben-Gurion accepted military defense strategy of Israel.

The document highlights major changes in Israel’s strategic landscape, noting that the main threat confronting Israel today is from violent and wellarmed non-state organisations such as Hamas and Hezbollah, which have forced Israel into five instances of armed conflict in the past ten years (including Operation Summer Rains in Gaza in June 2006).

The document details what can be expected from the IDF during three types of situations: Routine time, emergency situations and wartime. Based on this division, conflicts like Operation Protective Edge and Operation Pillar of Defense are considered confrontations limited in their scope and are therefore define as “emergency,” rather than “war.” This means these confrontations were meant to bring Israel “back to a situation of calm, without striving for an immediate strategic change,” so the IDF cannot be expected to bring down the Hamas regime in Gaza in such a military campaign, unless the political leadership tells it otherwise.

Responding to the challenge posed to Israel’s security by these hybrid actors, the doctrine updates one of the three D’s, “deterrence” – a central pillar of Israel’s security doctrine – clarifying the IDF’s role in developing a means for prolonging the period between wars. Moreover, the strategy redefines the concept of “military decision”, tying it to “achieving the political goals set for the campaign, leading to a postwar improved security situation”. This reflects an acknowledgment that in asymmetric conflict, conclusive defeat or surrender of the enemy should not typically be the expected outcome. The strategy also emphasises the importance of international media, humanitarian concerns and international legitimacy as relevant to the IDF’s ability to fight.

Eisenkot’s strategy confirms the addition of a fourth “D” – “defence” – to Israel’s core security pillars: “defence” – described as preparing the military and the public for steps the army will take to address threats on Israeli soil – constitutes a crucial addition, especially as the increasing rocket arsenals and the evolving subterranean threat along both the Israel-Lebanon and the Israel-Gaza borders has increased the likelihood that the next war will impact the home front in unprecedented ways.

The definition of the “enemy” has also been altered. As the threat of an all-out war against another state or several other states is on the decline, the document redefines the main threat as coming from military organizations like Hamas and Hezbollah or terror organizations that are not affiliated with any one country, like global jihad and the Islamic State.

idflogoMore in New Israel Military Strategy and in related materials – A previous outside analysis about Israeli military doctrine: Israel’s Strategic Doctrine – RAND Corporation and IDF’s public resume about previous military doctrine: IDF Doctrine


IDF ready but political leadership not

Besides new strategy the core element of Israel defense is its advanced missile defense system. The Israeli defense establishment has designed a multilayered system that will allow the Jewish state to respond to simultaneous attacks from multiple fronts — the relatively crude homemade rockets lobbed by Hamas from the Gaza Strip, the midrange rockets and missiles fired by the Shiite militants of Hezbollah from Lebanon, and the long-range ballistic missiles being developed by Iran that could carry conventional or chemical warheads. (More in Now Israel Has The Most Advanced Missile Defense System In The World )

Israel missile defence By Ari Rusila figure

However – according BICOM Strategic Assessment – the army’s preparedness for the next war stands in stark contrast to that of the political leadership. The adoption of the new IDF strategy is notable in that its existence follows years of failed attempts by the political leadership to formulate a written national security doctrine. While Israel is often lauded for its tactical proficiency, it is frequently chastised both by domestic commissions of inquiry and policy analysts for its decision-making process as well as lack of long-term planning and clear strategic agenda.


The failure of third parties to enforce political solutions to asymmetric threats

The key provisions of UNSCR 1701 called for the disarmament of all armed groups in Lebanon, ensuring that there would be “no weapons or authority in Lebanon other than that of the Lebanese state”. The resolution also enhanced the mandate for the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL II), which would now allow for UNIFIL troops to, among other things, accompany and support the Lebanese army (LAF) as they deployed throughout south Lebanon as the IDF withdrew, and to assist the LAF with ensuring that it served as the only armed presence in southern Lebanon.

However UNIFIL and the LAF have failed to live up to expectations as demonstrated by Hezbollah’s significantly increased military strength. This situation, as well as the international community’s failure to successfully pressure Hamas to demilitarise in Gaza, offers a lesson. While international actors are increasingly needed as interlocutors to end asymmetric conflicts against non-state actors, they are rarely strong enough to help Israel achieve its political objectives vis-à-vis these groups.

Israel’s negative experience with the efficacy of international forces also ties in to the government’s opposition to an international presence along the Jordan Valley in the context of a future peace agreement with the Palestinians. The feeling that the best guarantor of Israel’s security is Israel itself – a long held belief by the framers of Israel’s security concept – is perceived as being validated by the UNIFIL experience. [Source: BICOM Strategic Assessment ]


Hezbollah now stronger than ever – despite Syria

Hezbollah has effectively utilised the “quiet” to prepare for its next confrontation with Israel, continuing to expand its arsenal in flagrant violation of UNSCR 1701. Despite the resolution’s changes to UNIFIL’s mandate, Hezbollah now has over 100,000 missiles – thousands of which have a range and accuracy to strike cities and strategic sites throughout Israel. The organisation has also built extensive new infrastructure – further embedding it into communities and the terrain in southern Lebanon. Rumours abound that Hezbollah has constructed a network of tunnels that extend under the border into northern Israel that would be utilised by fighters in the next war.

However the on-going fighting in Syria and high rate of casualties reduces the chance that Hezbollah will look to open a second front with Israel in the near term. On the other hand there is a concern in Israel that the combat experience gained in the Syrian war will render the next Israel-Hezbollah war more challenging for the IDF.

Israel Defense :

A future war between Israel and Hezbollah would likely be devastating with Hezbollah estimated to possess over 100,000 rockets – many of which are hidden amongst the civilian population of South Lebanon – thousands of which have a range and accuracy to strike cities and strategic sites throughout Israel. In February 2016, Hezbollah General Secretary Hassan Nasrallah threatened to attack Israel’s ammonia factory in Haifa, warning that the damage caused would be the equivalent of a nuclear bomb.

Hezbollah’s sophisticated military capacity poses grave policy dilemmas for Israel, with the IDF preparing both defensive means – such as multitiered anti-missile technology – and offensive air and ground tactics to prevent or limit thousands of missiles from hitting civilian and strategic targets.



Bottom line

Israel’s northern border has been quiet since the Second Lebanon War, however Israel – after lessons learned – is prepared for 3rd round with Hezbollah, even if unlikely in the foreseeable future. Similar to 2006, the situation remains delicate, and continued risk exists of a miscalculation that may drag the parties back into another round of fighting. Now a future conflict with Hezbollah is considered one of the most threatening scenario for the IDF due to the organisation’s significant military capability.

The IDF’s new strategy for confronting non-state actors, accepts that there is no military operation that can entirely eliminate the threat posed by groups such as Hezbollah and Hamas. BICOM Strategic Assessment concludes that the lack of a strong political address in Beirut (and Gaza) – as well as the relative weakness of the UN and other third parties – renders unlikely the possibility that Israel will achieve a decisive military victory in the traditional sense, and successfully transform its battlefield advantage into political gains.

In this context, as some experts have suggested, the best that can be hoped for is maintaining the status quo – predicated on mutual deterrence – while doing everything possible to prolong the periods between hostilities.


Military coup in Turkey: Turkish Army Statement

July 16, 2016

Nimetön (99)


Nimetön (100)

Update: Mideast Peace Process

July 5, 2016

ISRPALMideast peace process, or more precisely negotiations to solve Israel-Palestine conflict, has been in deep freeze nearly two years. Officially the international community is repeating the need for talks to implement Two-State-Solution, however the main stakeholders –leaders of Israel and Palestinian Authority – have not even met despite that offices of PM Netanyahu and President Abbas are almost neighbors and despite that outside facilitators have tried to organize informal meetings when both leaders have been same time in same foreign capital.

If direct or facilitated negotiations don’t start so the alternatives are the zero-option, unilateral decisions, regional or part-solutions. The zero-option describes the present situation which in course of time might be drifting towards One-state solution. Unilateral decisions can be made both parties, at best – if they are constructive – they can lead part-solutions or even in long run to Two-State. Regional solution might be e.g. Three-State solution where Gaza will be returned to Egypt and main part of West Bank to Jordania, like they were before Six-Days-War ( more in ”The Three-State Option could solve Gaza Conflict” ). One pragmatic part-solution could be Hamas-Israel deal about long term ceasefire or implementing Sinai option or Palestinian-Jordanian confederation or both.





The Quartet Report

The Middle East Quartet is a foursome of nations and international and supranational entities involved in mediating the peace process in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The Quartet are the United Nations, the United States, the European Union, and Russia. The group was established in Madrid in 2002. (More about the Quartet: Office of the Quartet )

Mideast_quartetThe newest report was published on 1st July 2016 and describes in its eight pages the stalled peace process without any new initiatives. The core point of the report is that according it the Israeli policy “is steadily eroding the viability of the two-state solution.””This raises legitimate questions about Israel’s long-term intentions, which are compounded by the statements of some Israeli ministers that there should never be a Palestinian state”. In addition Israel should stop building settlements, denying Palestinian development and designating land for exclusive Israeli use that Palestinians seek for a future state, the Middle East peace “Quartet” recommended. The Quartet said urgent affirmative steps needed to be taken to “prevent entrenching a one-state reality of perpetual occupation and conflict.”

The report claims Israel had taken for its exclusive use some 70 percent of Area C, which makes up 60 percent of the occupied West Bank and includes the majority of agricultural lands, natural resources and land reserves. Under the Oslo accords of the mid-1990s, Israel retains full control over Area C, where large tracts have been declared closed military areas.“Israel should implement positive and significant policy shifts, including transferring powers and responsibilities in Area C,” the Quartet report said.

Also amid a spike in violence, the Quartet criticized Palestinian leaders for “not consistently and clearly” condemning terrorist attacks and said illicit arms build up and militant activities in Gaza – controlled by Islamist group Hamas – must stop. The whole report Report of the Middle East Quartet – the European External Action Service in EAAS page.


The Israeli view

The statement of Israel government welcomes the Quartet’s recognition of the centrality of Palestinian incitement and violence to the perpetuation of the conflict. This culture of hatred poisons minds and destroys lives and stands as the single greatest obstacle to progress towards peace. The report unfortunately says nothing about the payments made by the Palestinian leadership to terrorists and their families. The graver the violence, the greater the payment. This Palestinian practice must stop.

Israel shares the Quartet’s historical commitment to advancing Israeli-Palestinian peace through direct, bilateral negotiations without preconditions.

In previous agreements, Israel and the Palestinians committed to discuss every difficult issue exclusively through direct, bilateral negotiations. Nevertheless, the record shows a history of repeated Palestinian rejection of offers to negotiate and compromise from Israeli governments across the political spectrum. Israel cannot negotiate peace with itself. According government statement “We regret the failure of the Quartet to address the real core of the conflict: the persistent Palestinian refusal to recognize Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people in any boundaries.”

From government statement:

The report also perpetuates the myth that Israeli construction in the West Bank is an obstacle to peace. When Israel froze settlements, it did not get peace. When Israel uprooted every settlement in Gaza, it did not get peace. It got war. It is troubling that the Quartet appears to have adopted the position that the presence of Jews living in the West Bank somehow prevents reaching a two-state solution. The presence of nearly 1.8 million Arabs in Israel isn’t a barrier to peace; it is a testament to our pluralism and commitment to equality.

Israel will continue to strive for a genuine, negotiated peace based on Prime Minister Netanyahu’s vision of two states for two peoples. While the report includes numerous factual and policy assertions with which we take issue, Israel will discuss with the Quartet envoys ways to explore moving toward this end.

Source: Government Press Office


Israel cannot negotiate peace with itself

The Palestinian Authority President rejected again the opportunity to meet with Israel’s President during a visit to Brussels by both leaders. With both Rivlin and Abbas in Brussels at the same time, the Europeans, very cautiously, proposed to explore the possibility of a Rivlin-Abbas encounter.

European Parliament President Martin Schulz attempted to broker the meeting between Presidents Reuven Rivlin and Mahmoud Abbas 23.6.2016, with President Rivlin keen to sit down with Abbas. President Rivlin said: “I was happy to welcome the initiative by the representative of the EU to set a meeting between me and President Abbas who is also visiting Brussels this very day.”

During a press conference alongside European Union (EU) foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini, the Israeli president said he was “very sorry to learn that he [Abbas] rejected such a meeting,” and found it “strange” that Abbas “refused again and again to meet with Israeli leaders”.

President Rivlin, who addressed the European Parliament and pledged Israeli support for the two-state solution, added: “We can talk. We can talk directly and find a way to build confidence.” Source: BICOM

European leaders had high hopes for Israeli President Reuven Rivlin’s June 20-23 visit to Brussels, and none of them tried to hide it. Indeed, the scope of Rivlin’s visit was practically unprecedented. Crisscrossing the Belgian capital, Rivlin met successively with Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel, Belgian King Philippe, President of the European Council Donald Tusk, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker, and the EU High Commissioner for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini. In between, Rivlin was also welcomed at the European Parliament, where he gave an address in Hebrew. But unlike the other political leaders Abbas rejected meeting with Rivlin.


Unilateral decisions?

One provocative view to issue

One provocative view to issue

From my perspective a new framework is needed, even if some apparent negotiations start the outcome probably will be a placebo to status quo.  Earlier I have referred two new leftist initiatives in my article Constructive Unilateralism: Leftist Approach to Israel-Palestine Conflict  – ‘it’s in our hands’ by Omer Bar-Lev, an MK for the Zionist Union and ‘Constructive unilateralism’ by Blue White Future, leftist think tank – which both in my opinion are steps forward and also to the right direction as well including required new roadmap for better future. A quote from Omer Bar-Lev, an MK for the Zionist Union. He concludes:

If Israel wants to be a democratic state, which it does, then it has to either grant them full citizenship rights, which will subsequently destroy Zionism (one state for two nations) or separate from the Palestinians (two states for two nations). In that case, Israel can keep the Zionist spirit. Then, it is for the Palestinians to decide to create their Palestinian State, which is in their interests and they will make their own decisions.

On January 2016, the leader of Israel’s opposition and head of the Zionist Union party Isaac Herzog, unveiled an alternative approach to the issue of Israel’s nearly 49-year old presence in the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem. The main point of Herzog’s plan is, that Israel will complete the security barrier around the major settlement blocs. “We will be here and you, Palestinians, will be there,” Herzog said. “Live your lives, improve your economy, create employment. The blocs under Israeli sovereignty will be part of the permanent solution. They will serve as recipients of settlers from outside the major blocs.” (more in Herzog’s Plan: Security Barrier Around the Major Settlement Blocs of West Bank )

From Israeli side unilateral withdrawal and unilateral annexation are the main strategy options related to West Bank. I think that unilateral withdrawal is both feasible and doable; its main benefit might be that Israel can deside it individually. Sure this option is promoted by Isaac Herzog, leader of the Zionist Union, but I understand that the proposal has support in addition to center-left also from center and center-right in Israeli’s political sphere.

The Palestinian Authority has already taken constructive unilateral steps by seeking United Nations recognition as a state and building the institutions of statehood in the West Bank.


Regional solutions?

The best possibilities to develop negotiated peace process might be in a regional peace track proposed by Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, in which Egypt would facilitate direct peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians as well as between Israel and its Arab neighbors. Egypt, one of few Arab countries that have diplomatic relations with Israel, is a close ally of the Palestinians and enjoys good relations with Arab states which will be needed to make any potential concessions to Israel to reach a peace deal. Israelis and Palestinians have both been speaking to Sisi’s government about playing a role in talks.

clinton parameters

Cairo wants to build upon the areas of agreement already reached between Israelis and Palestinians during the Kerry-led talks in 2013-2014 and extensive security discussions between the two sides. It’s based on the premise that both sides have had extensive discussions, have discussed various parameters and know what is needed for an agreement. The Egyptians also want to revive the 2003 Arab Peace Initiative originally put forward by Saudi Arabia, in which Arab states could make some gestures to Israel in order to secure better conditions for the Palestinians. According CNN an Egyptian official said Netanyahu has shown a “sense of receptivity” to such a process led by Israel’s Arab neighbors.


On November 2015 Jerusalem Post reported   that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas was claiming that Israel and Hamas have been conducting direct negotiations to expand the Gaza Strip so that it would include some 1,000 square kilometers of Sinai. At its core, the Egyptian initiative proposes expanding the Gaza Strip to five times its current size and settling all the Palestinian refugees in a state to be established there. Under the initiative, this state will be demilitarized, the Palestinian Authority would be granted autonomy in the Palestinian cities in the West Bank in exchange for relinquishing the Palestinian demand to return to 1967 borders. (More in Sinai Option again )

Earlier in August 2015 it was reported in the Times of Israel, that Hamas and Israel have essentially agreed on a long-term cease-fire. Hamas is about to sign a “comprehensive” agreement with Israel for the lifting of an eight-year blockade placed on the Gaza Strip in return for a long-term ceasefire One part of the deal is now coming to reality with new plan of Gaza seaport (more in Gaza Seaport – A Threat or Change and background in Hamas and Israel on Verge of the Deal ) Gaza seaport has been one aspect with reconciliation talks between Israel and Turkey which talks are now proved to be a success.An expression of new warmer Israeli-Turkish relations was on July 4th, 2016 , as the first truck from the Turkish transport ships arrived from Ashdod Port to the Kerem Shalom crossing. The truck contained a shipment of toys (dolls and teddy bears) as well diapers in cartons bearing the Turkish flag. Ministry of Defense Crossing Authority personnel and COGAT officials unloaded the goods and are preparing them for transfer into Gaza. Source: Ministry of Defense

In my opinion annexing part of Sinai to Gaza as might partly solve Arab-Israeli Conflict as well Hamas-Israel Deal could pave way for the ‘Cold Peace Solution’. With this context the Gaza seaport is from point of view a positive step forward.

Jordan is Palestine Map low resInstead ‘knife intifada’ and no-talks policy the Palestinians could now think outside the box and reopen talks about the Palestinian-Jordanian confederation structure. The Palestinian-Jordanian confederation means the establishment of two states for two peoples, after the establishment of the Palestinian state based on the 1967 lines. This confederation solution was first raised by Jordan in 1972, but the PLO categorically rejected it in the same year. According to the confederation system, there would be two capitals — Jerusalem for the Palestinians and Amman for Jordanians — a centralized judiciary and one armed force led by the Jordanian king, one centralized council of ministers and one national assembly elected by the two peoples. The state should allow citizens to have full freedom of movement between the two regions.

My bottom line

The components of Two-State solution have been roughly clear last two decades – see e.g. Clinton Parameters – but the final agreement is still missing. The international pressure might lead to talks or negotiations again, with or without outside facilitators, but probably with the same outcome than earlier. So from my perspective unilateral actions are steps forward and in my opinion also to the right direction.

If peace negotiations don’t start, they fail again or regional solutions can’t be realized this time so from my viewpoint Israel could independently implement what I have called a ‘Cold Peace Solution’, a minimal level of peace relations, where Israel would annex main settlements from West-bank inside the security fence and return to negotiations about other than so solved border issue when both parties feel need to make a long term deal. This solution in my opinion is the best way forward and it even might be possible to implement. If unilateral solutions are made in the framework of constructive unilateralism so this approach might be the right roadmap towards more permanent two-state solution.

Israeli-Palestinian conflict roadmaps to peace

Related articles:

Gaza Seaport – A Threat or Change

Israel’s 5 Strategy Options Regarding West Bank After Abbas

Constructive Unilateralism: Leftist Approach to Israel-Palestine Conflict

Herzog’s Plan: Security Barrier Around the Major Settlement Blocs of West Bank

Analysis: Resolving The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

Gaza’s Tunnel War Continues On All Fronts

Sinai Option again

Hamas and Israel on Verge of the Deal

Gaza State Under Construction, West Bank Remains Bystander

Gaza Blockade – It’s Egypt not Israel!

Armed Drones: President Obama’s Weapon of Choice?

July 5, 2016

President Barack Obama has received much credit for drawing down American involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan, but less attention has been paid to his administration’s embrace of armed drones.

Under orders from the White House, the military and the CIA hunt down and kill people who have been deemed – through secretive processes, hidden from the press and the American public – worthy of execution.

These remote strikes tend to take place in foreign countries which are not declared war zones. The number of civilians killed is purposely withheld. And they are all carried out from afar by armed drones, which have become President Obama’s weapon of choice.

While there has been intense focus on the technology of remote killing, that serves as a red herring for something far more important: The U.S. government’s exercise of worldwide power over life and death. After all, armed drones are a tool, not a policy. The policy is assassination.

Please have a look at new infographic made by Ammo.com.

Armed Drones: President Obama's Weapon of Choice [INFOGRAPHIC]
Via: Ammo.com

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