July 2012 Archives

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Peers,let’s put our heads together and do some serious thinking.  Before we find ourselves in another world war which nobody wants.  Please read this report:  Israel blames Iran for Bulgaria bombing.  Now read this report:  Iran blames Israel for Bulgaria Bombing.  The Prime Minister of Bulgaria refuses to support either claim.  Bulgaria’s position is stated clearly in the paper trail:  “We do not want to get involved in this long-standing conflict, as we are very vulnerable.”  “Let’s wait for evidence to support such claims.”

A few days ago Netanyahu was pointing his finger at Hezbollah.  Nasrallah responded:  “Hezbollah doesn’t target Israeli tourists in foreign lands.  We target Israel’s military when it’s occupying Lebanon.”  Peers, when we think about it, it’s unlikely that an Arab group was responsible for the bombing.  Arab groups usually take responsibility for their militant activities, which helps to explain a news report from yesterday:  EU refuses Israeli request to blacklist Hezbollah.

Thinking is hard work, Peers, but somebody has got to do it.  If not us… who?   If not now… when?   Please read on. Peace, Roy

Note:   The highlights in the following report are mine.  I highlighted the concluding paragraph.   Peace, Roy

Click here: BBC News – Bulgaria blast: Burgas bus bomber ‘part of group’

24 July 2012 Last updated at 11:36 ET

Bulgaria blast: Burgas bus bomber ‘part of group’


Israel’s tourism minister paid his respects to the bomb victims at the site of the blast on Tuesday

The suicide bomber who killed six people in Bulgaria last week was part of a sophisticated group of conspirators, Prime Minister Boiko Borisov has said.

He said the group had arrived in Bulgaria a month before the attack.

But he declined to back Israeli claims that Iran and Lebanese militant group Hezbollah played a role.

Five Israeli tourists and a Bulgarian bus driver died in last Wednesday’s bombing in Burgas on the Black Sea.

The identity of the man who carried out the bombing remains unclear.

As well as those killed, dozens of people were wounded in the blast.

Israeli Tourism Minister Stas Misezhnikov laid a wreath at the bomb site during a memorial ceremony on Tuesday.

Mr Borisov, who was speaking in Sofia alongside White House counter-terrorism chief John Brennan, said the US was supporting Bulgaria’s investigation into the attack.

Mr Borisov did not say exactly how many people had been involved in the conspiracy he described, but he said they had been “exceptionally skilled” and operated under “strict conspiracy rules” to keep the plot hidden.

Those involved used “leased vehicles, they moved in different cities so as not to be seen together, and no two of them can be seen in one place on any security camera”.

“There was absolutely no chance of preventing such an act of violence,” the prime minister insisted.

“We could have only detected it by chance or if we had been informed by the services that such activities were under way in Bulgaria.”

Shortly after the bombing, Bulgarian authorities released CCTV images of the man they believed carried out the bombing, but they appeared to contrast with some witness descriptions.

Mr Borisov said authorities had shared fingerprints and DNA samples with other security services but no match had been found, and the man’s identity remained elusive.

But he added that they knew “when he arrived, the presumed flight and where it came from”, reported AFP news agency.

Mr Borisov also refused to back Israeli claims of involvement by Iran or Hezbollah, saying “we do not want to get involved in this long-standing conflict as we are very vulnerable”.

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Father Roy writes:  Politics gets more and more curious every day.  How many Americans know that Congress passed this law two weeks ago?  Well, the President didn’t sign it until today.   Peace, Roy

One day before Romney’s visit, Obama to sign act expanding military cooperation with Israel

In signing the United States-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act, Obama is trying to upstage his rival for the presidency, Mitt Romney, as he arrives for an official visit to Israel.

By Barak Ravid | Jul.26, 2012 | 6:27 PM | 1

The White House may be trying to steal the thunder from Republican candidate Mitt Romney on the eve of his visit to Jerusalem. A day before Romney is due to land in Israel, U.S. President Barack Obama will sign the United States-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act, which is meant to approve and expand military cooperation between the two countries.

The act, which Congress passed a week ago, will be signed by the U.S. president at a White House ceremony on Friday.

The republican candidate for the U.S. president will arrive in Israel on Saturday afternoon and will meet in Jerusalem with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, President Shimon Peres, and the Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad.

Romney will visit the Western Wall, and will also give a speech about foreign policy and Israel-U.S. relations.

In the evening, Romney and his wife Ann will visit the Prime Minister’s residence in Jerusalem, for an evening meal with Netanyahu and his wife, Sara. On Monday morning, before he travels on to Poland, Romney will carry out a fundraising event in the King David Hotel in Jerusalem. Entry to the event will cost $50,000 per participant.

According to an Israeli official, the White House decided to carry out the signing ceremony of the United States-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act as a counterweight to Romney’s visit to Israel, and the criticism that Romney has expressed of the Obama’s relationship to Israel in general, and to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in particular, over the past three years.

An Israeli official said that U.S. Jewish leaders and a long list of Democratic and Republican congress members and senators have been invited to the signing ceremony of the act, which will take place in the White House.

Obama is interested in highlighting, through the signing of the act, the unprecedented upgrade of Israel-U.S. security cooperation during his term, the Israeli official said.

Obama and Romney are currently fighting over the votes of Jewish Americans. Jewish votes in a number of key states, such as Florida, are likely to influence the final result of the upcoming elections, and the fact that Obama did not visit Israel during his first term, and his shaky relationship with Netanyahu, are serving the Republicans in elections and campaign broadcasts to gain the votes of the Jewish community.

Romney’s elections campaign has published a number of U.S. media articles in the past months in order to emphasize the friendly relations between Romney and Netanyahu. Romney’s visit to Israel is also meant to resonate with Jewish voters.

Romney’s visit to Israel is a great worry for Obama’s election campaign. Evidence of this was a conference call with reporters organized by a number of senior members of Obama’s campaign team. One of them, Colin Kahl, who served until a few months ago as an assistant to the Secretary of Defense, he pledged that Obama would come to Israel if elected for a second term.

The law for the expansion of United States-Israel Enhanced Security Cooperation Act was passed in Congress on July 17, and was widely supported by Republicans and Democrats. The act extended by two years – until the end of 2014 – the funding provided by the U.S. government for placing emergency U.S. arms caches in warehouses on Israeli territory in case of war.

The law also states that Congress calls on the U.S. government to increase joint military exercises with the IDF, to provide Israel with more aid in developing defense system against rockets, and to provide Israel with advanced weapons such as refueling aircrafts and high-accuracy ammunition.

The law also stipulates that the U.S. will assist Israel to prepare in security terms for the U.S. pullout from Iraq.

Another stipulation is that the administration will offer Israel more options for training the Israel Air Force in U.S. airspace, as well the expansion of intelligence cooperation with Israel, including in the field of spy satellites.