“The prime minister of Israel is being investigated for corruption. His cabinet is crumbling. And he’s not going anywhere”

NEW YORK TIMES
The Invincible Benjamin Netanyahu
by Anshel Pfeffer
December 7, 2018

…What makes Mr. Netanyahu so different? In nearly a decade back in power, he has delivered what had never seemed possible: a period of sustained economic growth, including, for the first time, a AA- international credit rating; flourishing ties with countries around the world (and, behind the scenes, new alliances with Arab governments); and, by Israeli standards, security. A third Intifada hasn’t broken out on his watch. Israel found itself fighting on the ground in Gaza only once, for a 50-day period in the summer of 2014. And the shadow war with Iran in Syria has not boiled over. READ MORE

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“Like all murders, Jamal Khashoggi’s was an evil deed. Should the United States respond to it with a major disruption in relations with Saudi Arabia? No — emphatically no”

SPECTATOR
What I Learned Over Lunch With the Real Jamal Khashoggi…Lindsey Graham should listen in
by Joseph P. Duggan
December 7, 2018

Overthrowing the Saudi monarchy is something no sane person should hope for. This does not mean that the Saudi monarchy is good. It does not mean that the world should love it or praise it. But the world needs to live with it. Politics is the art of the possible, and the only possible alternative to the Saud family dynasty would be so much worse that it likely would bring about a global catastrophe — hundreds of thousands of innocent women, men and children dead in Arabia and a collapse of the petroleum-dependent world economy. This is not an exaggeration. Iraq and Libya will have been Sunday school picnics compared with the bloodshed and anarchy of an Islamic Republic of Wahhabi Arabia. READ MORE

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How to solve the pension crisis in Illinois

DISPATCH-ARGUS
A legal answer to state pension crisis?
by Scott Reeder
November 29, 2018

A new legal theory is being pondered by outgoing state Rep. Jeanne Ives, R-Wheaton, that she contends would get the state out from under the pension debt. It goes like this: The state entered into illegal contracts when it signed up employees for pensions over the last 40 years. While the state constitution says pensions of public employees cannot be diminished, the constitution also mandates that state legislators pass a budget they believe to be balanced and the constitution also says Illinois cannot take on more debt unless three-fifths of lawmakers agree…Her contention is that this was a deliberate violation of the balanced budget clause of the state constitution and thus its “contract” with pensioners is void. READ MORE

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“On Tuesday IDF launched Operation Northern Shield, a concentrated effort to uncover and destroy border-crossing Hezbollah attack tunnels”

TIMES OF ISRAEL
In rain and mud, IDF exposes another tunnel from Lebanon into Israel
by Judah Ari Gross
December 8, 2018

The Israeli military on Saturday located an additional cross-border attack tunnel from southern Lebanon into Israeli territory — the second it has fully exposed and the third it has identified since the start of its operation to find and destroy such underground passages. This fresh tunnel, whose location has been kept secret for security reasons, has been fitted with explosives in order to ensure that it cannot be used by the Iran-backed terror group Hezbollah, army spokesperson Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus told reporters. READ MORE

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NYT’s Michelle Goldberg: As a Jew, it’s totally fine to attack Israel’s “ethno-nationalism”

JNS
Anti-Semites and their Jewish apologists
by Jonathan S. Tobin
December 7, 2018

…The most prominent example of this trend is New York Times columnist Michelle Goldberg. In her latest column, she makes a straightforward argument for the proposition that support for the elimination of the Jewish state is not only not anti-Semitic, but also somehow more in keeping with the values of Diaspora Jews. While this argument is framed in terms that attempt to depict Israel’s left-wing foes as advocates of liberal values, the opposite is the truth. Goldberg’s stand is one that justifies a form of bias that is indistinguishable from anti-Semitism. That she does so while depicting herself as a guardian of Jewish values is utterly despicable. READ MORE

JTA New York Times columnist defends anti-Zionism Michelle Goldberg, a columnist for The New York Times, wrote a piece defending anti-Zionism and saying it is not anti-Semitism. “The conflation of anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism is a bit of rhetorical sleight-of-hand that depends on treating Israel as the embodiment of the Jewish people everywhere,” she wrote Friday. “Certainly, some criticism of Israel is anti-Semitic, but it’s entirely possible to oppose Jewish ethno-nationalism without being a bigot.”

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“Airbnb doesn’t always discriminate against Jews” just some of them, sometimes

JERUSALEM POST
Airbnb: Feeble excuses for blatant bigotry
by Peggy Shapiro
December 5, 2018

Airbnb is defending its decision to delist properties owned by Israelis/Jews in Judea/Samaria (West Bank) with their defense as feeble as their decision is bigoted. As a college professor for 31 years, I have heard my fair share of flawed logic and lame excuses, but never as ludicrous as those offered by Airbnb, a company with aspirations of earning the necessary investor trust to launch an IPO and go public in the next few months. In a recent interview, Airbnb spokesman Chris Lehane said, with a straight face, that Airbnb’s exclusion of Jewish homes, and only Jewish homes, isn’t antisemitic or anti-Israel because the company doesn’t discriminate against all Jews. READ MORE

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“US bid for first ever UNGA vote against Hamas was doomed after states decided it would need a two-thirds majority.” Switzerland, Norway and New Zealand helped kill resolution.

NATIONAL REVIEW
The U.N. Gives Palestinian Terrorists a Free Pass
by David May
December 7, 2018

On Thursday the United Nations had an opportunity to speak with moral clarity and denounce the terrorist group Hamas. Instead, the General Assembly (UNGA) rejected a U.S.-sponsored resolution that called for an end to violence, encouraged intra-Palestinian reconciliation, and condemned terrorism. A disappointed Nikki Haley, U.S. ambassador to the U.N., lamented, “Over the years, the UN has voted to condemn Israel over 500 times . . . and not one single resolution condemning Hamas. That, more than anything else, is a condemnation of the United Nations itself.” READ MORE

TIMES OF ISRAEL Resolution condemning Hamas fails at UN, despite majority, unprecedented suppor The United Nations General Assembly on Thursday failed to pass a resolution condemning Hamas, serving a defeat to Israel and its American ally in their efforts for a first ever UN condemnation of the terror group after weeks of diplomacy. While the US-backed draft resolution got a comfortable majority of votes, it fell short of the two-thirds super-majority needed to pass.

CANADA FREE PRESS UN General Assembly Legitimizes Hamas’s Evil Acts It’s no surprise that dictatorships such as the Arab bloc countries, Iran, Russia, China, Cuba and Venezuela voted for the two-thirds requirement. However, countries such as Switzerland, Norway, New Zealand, Saint Lucia and Costa Rica abstained rather than show some backbone, easing the way for the obstructionist procedural maneuver to pass by the skin of its teeth.

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