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Evacuees From Israel’s Northern Border Warn US: ‘We Won’t Allow Another Oct. 7 to Happen Here’

Israeli soldiers stand by, as a mobile artillery unit fires on the Israeli side of the Israel-Lebanon border, Dec. 2, 2023. Photo: REUTERS/Gil Eliyahu

Evacuated residents from northern Israel on Monday issued a harsh call to the Biden administration to prevent Hezbollah from carrying out a massacre similar to the Hamas attack on Israel’s south on Oct. 7, saying that the Iran-backed terror group in Lebanon must be forced to retreat further away from the border.

In a letter to US President Joe Biden and senior administration officials, Lobby 1701, a civilian organization representing the residents of northern Israel, called on the US to give “its full support to the government of Israel to act with the necessary force” to safeguard the north.

Of more than 230,000 evacuated citizens, more than 60,000 are residents residing within five kilometers of the northern border, now effectively a front line.

Lobby 1701, established in the wake of the Hamas atrocities on Oct. 7, gets its name from United Nations Security Council Resolution 1701, adopted in 2006 during the Second Lebanon War. It called for the disarmament of Hezbollah and the deployment of Lebanese and UN peacekeeping forces, UNIFIL, in southern Lebanon.

Monday’s letter slammed the ineffectiveness of both the resolution and UNIFIL in preventing an assault on Israel’s north, which has seen intense fighting since Oct. 7.

“We speak in the name of the 60,000 residents of northern Israel who were evacuated from their homes and turned into refugees in their own land. For more than 70 days, we have been ‘living in exile’ due to Hezbollah firing daily at our homes, and the inability of Lebanon to properly implement UNSCR 1701,” the letter stated.

It called on the US and “the international community to prevent the next massacre.”

Nisan Zeevi, co-founder of Lobby 1701, expressed frustration over the collapse of the Security Council resolution’s stated aim and called for a terror-free buffer zone. “The failure of UNSCR 1701 has left us with no choice but to demand genuine security through a Hezbollah-free buffer zone. We refuse to return to our homes without concrete assurances of safety. We demand a change of the present reality: From a buffer zone within Israel to a buffer zone within Lebanon,” Zeevi said.

“The time for diplomatic resolutions has passed. Oct. 7 showed the whole world what these jihadi organizations are capable of, and our safety demands a clear and resolute stance against terrorism,” he said.

According to a report by the Axios news site last week, Israel told the US that a diplomatic agreement designed to reduce tensions with Lebanon must include the withdrawal of Iran-backed Hezbollah forces to a distance of 6 miles from the border.

The Wall Street Journal on Saturday reported that Israel had intended to carry out a preemptive strike against Hezbollah on Oct. 11, but that the action was averted at the last moment after Biden intervened. Netanyahu’s office later denied the report.

Zeevi told The Algemeiner that the ultimate decision regarding Israel’s security should be made by Israel alone. While acknowledging Biden as “a great partner and ally of Israel,” he went on to say the US president “can’t be the one to decide how to take care of the security of tens of thousands of families living here on the border.”

The Biden administration cannot “decide the future of me and my family,” he said.

“This is only our decision; this is not the US’s decision,” Zeevi added.

Despite being within a few miles of the border, some of Israel’s northern residents are not in the official evacuation zone and have self-evacuated. They are forced to either manage the expenses of dual residences or stay with family elsewhere in the country.

Kibbutz leaders from Manara, a northern community, reported on Sunday that since the onset of Hezbollah-led attacks in October, 86 out of 155 houses in their area have suffered damage due to rocket strikes as well as anti-tank missiles launched by terrorist groups operating out of Lebanon.

A Hezbollah-affiliated correspondent for the Al Mayadeen network, Ali Mortada, this week released a taunting video in which he mockingly greeted his Israeli audience and commented on the damaged state of Manara, which he filmed from a distance. “Hello my enemies; I hope you are having a bad day,” he said. Mortada chuckled over the destroyed kibbutz and ended with a warning: “Manara is a ghost city. Don’t go back. Don’t ever go back.”

Hello my enemies pic.twitter.com/xUPyg2HASF

— Ali Mortada || علي مرتضى (@aliimortada) December 24, 2023

The post Evacuees From Israel’s Northern Border Warn US: ‘We Won’t Allow Another Oct. 7 to Happen Here’ first appeared on Algemeiner.com.

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Brian Mulroney (1939-2024) was a steadfast supporter of Israel and the Jewish community

World Jewish Congress honoured him with the Herzl Award last November.

The post Brian Mulroney (1939-2024) was a steadfast supporter of Israel and the Jewish community appeared first on The Canadian Jewish News.

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Quebec officially opened a representative office in Tel Aviv after months of war-related delay—with Israeli consul general Paul Hirschson greeting director Alik Hakobyan

Quebec’s representative office is opening in Tel Aviv this week, after months of delay, caused by the Oct. 7 Hamas attacks and the subsequent war. Alik Hakobyan, who is the director of the office, had been operating the bureau in Montreal but officially moved to Israel this week to continue his work with the bureau. […]

The post Quebec officially opened a representative office in Tel Aviv after months of war-related delay—with Israeli consul general Paul Hirschson greeting director Alik Hakobyan appeared first on The Canadian Jewish News.

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Uncommitted: Rashida Tlaib Refuses to Say Whether She Will Support Biden in November

Reps. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) listen as Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan testifies before the House Oversight and Reform Committee on “Trump Administration’s Child Separation Policy” on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., July 18, 2019. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

Representative Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) refused to say earlier this week if she planned to vote for her party’s incumbent, President Joe Biden, in the 2024 election.

During a press conference where she and other members of the so-called  far-left “Squad”, including Reps. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), Ilhan Omar (D-MN), and Jamaal Bowman (D-NY),  were calling for a permanent ceasefire in the Israel-Hamas war, Tlaib did not comment when asked if she would be voting for Biden in November.

Tlaib is the only Palestinian-American member of Congress and also represents the most Arab district in the country.

During this week’s Michigan primary, she supported the campaign to vote “uncommitted” rather than for Biden, in protest of his pro-Israel stance since Hamas’s October 7 terrorist attack.

While she would not answer what she plans to do in November, when asked about others who voted “uncommitted,” she told them, “Don’t stay home,” adding, “One thing that I know about staying home is you’re making us more invisible. I want you to exercise your right to vote, I really mean this. But also think of the whole ballot.” 

She urged people to “not always think about that top of that ticket.”

In 2020, she did not endorse Biden, but did campaign against Trump.

During this week’s primary, more than 100,000 people cast an “uncommitted” ballot, making up 13.2 percent of the vote. If a sizable portion of that group decides not to vote for Biden in November, it has the possibility of tipping the state and election toward his opponent — which is likely going to be former President Donald Trump. In 2016, Trump beat Clinton in the state by only about 10,700 votes.

In Tlaib’s district, about 17 percent of people voted “uncommitted,” and 78 percent voted for Biden.

For context, in the 2012 primaries, just over 10 percent of Michigan voters cast an “uncommitted” ballot against former President Barack Obama. However, in raw numbers, it was only about 20,000 people.

Tlaib was clear that she wanted to avoid a second Trump term, saying “I am incredibly, incredibly scared of a second Trump term, and I think it’s really important to emphasize this.” She continued: “Right now, our democracy is at stake. Many of us are saying change course because you’re threatening our democracy.”

During the press conference, Tlaib emphasized that she was not pushing for a temporary ceasefire with Hamas but rather a permanent one.

“A temporary ceasefire isn’t enough,” she said.

Critics of her approach point out that such a solution would allow Hamas to remain in power and would likely leave some number of hostages in the hands of Hamas as well — neither of which is conducive to short or long-term peace.

In recent months, Tlaib has strongly spoken out against Biden’s Israel policy. In November, she said “Joe Biden supported the genocide of the Palestinian people.”

Then, this week, she said “Over the past few weeks, we’ve heard a lot about how the president and his administration are concerned and troubled by the Israeli government’s actions. We’re here to tell him, so are we.” 

“And yet again, once again, we are continuing though to veto resolutions at the United Nations for the third time calling for immediate, lasting ceasefire,” she lamented.

The post Uncommitted: Rashida Tlaib Refuses to Say Whether She Will Support Biden in November first appeared on Algemeiner.com.

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