Ten-Year-Old Story by Gilad Shalit Is Published

Hillel Fendel

Ten-Year-Old Story by Gilad Shalit Is Published

While talks for a trade for Hamas-held Gilad Shalit stall, a booklet he wrote when he was 11 is published.

Israel National News


While talks with Hamas for a trade for captive soldier Gilad Shalit stall, a picture book he wrote when he was 11 is published.

“When the Shark and the Fish First Met” is the name of the new Hebrew-language booklet, based on a story written by Gilad Shalit ten years ago. Complete with drawings by the author, it was released over the weekend in a gallery in the northern town of Nahariya, not far from his hometown.

The story tells the tale of two enemies, a shark and a fish, who come to the conclusion that it is best to live and play together than continue fighting.

Shalit was taken captive by Hamas terrorists in June 2006. The enemy forces crawled through a tunnel under the Gaza-Israel border, killed two Israeli soldiers, and dragged Shalit back with them into Gaza. A tape of Shalit’s voice was released this past June, and he is assumed to be alive.

Talks for his release have been on-again, off-again for many months, stipulating the release of as many as 1,500 convicted terrorists held in Israel or as few as 400. This past Friday, Hamas blamed Israel in its announcement that the latest round of negotiations had stalled.

Enemies Put Aside Their Differences

Gilad’s father Noam said about the new publication, “It speaks for itself. An 11-year-old boy wrote an amazing story that is relevant to the situation in which he finds himself today. The message is about two enemies who end up reaching the conclusion that it is better to live together side by side, and not to eat each other. This, despite the pre-conceived notions of the parents, and especially the mothers.”

“Gilad is now being held captive by the Palestinians in Gaza,” Noam Shalit said, “and we have been waiting a year and a half for him to return home. I hope that the message from the book and from the gallery’s exhibit will get to whoever needs to hear it: Our leaders and the leaders of our enemies. The truth comes from the mouth of babes, and all that remains is to persuade our leaders that this is the truth.”

The idea of releasing hundreds of terrorist prisoners, including those who may have been involved in murderous attacks, in exchange for captive soldiers is a matter of great controversy. The Almagor Terror Victims Association has shown that in 30 attacks perpetrated in recent years by terrorists freed in prisoner exchanges or otherwise, nearly 180 innocent citizens, mostly Israeli Jews, were killed, and many were also seriously wounded. Of the nearly 7,000 terrorists who were freed between 1993 and 1999, over 850 (12.4%) had been re-arrested for murderous activity by August 2003. Another two-thirds of them returned to terrorist activity, be it in capacities of command, training or actual perpetration of attacks.

In addition, it has been reported lately that Hamas demands the release of terrorist chieftain Marwan Barghouti—a murderer who has already been freed from Israeli prison twice before, only to be returned to prison each time for even more heinous crimes and murders. Originally arrested in 1976, he was released under unknown circumstances and became one of the initiators and leaders of the first intifada that began in late 1987. He was ultimately arrested again and banished to Jordan, where he remained for seven years. He was then allowed into Judea and Samaria in 1994 in the framework of the Oslo Accords, after promising not to revert to terrorism—and is now in prison for the murder of five Israelis and involvement in murdering at least a dozen more.

Shalit’s Comrades in Ariel

The officers and soldiers in Shalit’s unit visited the Shomron (Samaria) city of Ariel last week, stopping at the local Holocaust Museum. Mayor Ron Nachman told them, “On behalf of the citizens of Ariel, I wish to encourage and strengthen you in the holy work in which you are engaged. From my standpoint, as a mayor and a private citizen, you and the army have my total support. I believe that the public does not sufficiently value the important and difficult work that you do. Please give the Shalit family all of our feelings of support during this difficult period.”

Fake Arabs with Fake Guns Storm Plaza Near Bush-Olmert Meeting

Baruch Gordon

Fake Arabs with Fake Guns Storm Plaza Near Bush-Olmert Meeting

A colorful demonstration was held Wednesday afternoon in Jerusalem as US President George Bush met with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.

Israel National News


A lively and colorful demonstration was held Wednesday afternoon in Jerusalem as US President George Bush met with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.

Dressed in Arab headdresses and holding toy rifles, scores of protestors gathered in the square of Jerusalem’s Great Synagogue, near Olmert’s official residence where the two leaders met. The demonstration was organized by the Almagor Terror Victims Association to protest the release of convicted Arab terrorists and the establishment of a Palestinian state in Israel.

Yitzchak Maoz, father of Tehilla Maoz who was killed in the 2001 S’barro restaurant terrorist bombing, told the crowd that the nearby peace discussions were totally removed from reality. “The town of Sederot in southern Israel is bombed daily, Fatah policemen are killing Jews – and yet just down the street from here, over glasses of champagne, Bush and Olmert are talking about releasing more terrorists so that the same killers that murdered my daughter can kill again.”

Meir Indor, Director of the Almagor Association, noted: “US President George W. Bush may be wondering why no one walks on the streets of Jerusalem. It is an eerie picture of what Jerusalem might look like if Bush and Olmert succeed in dividing the city. If the city of Jerusalem is divided, when the Kassam rockets start flying, the streets will be as deserted as the streets of Sderot.”

Indor warned the protestors, “The creation of a Palestinian state will lead to a Hamas takeover just as happened in Gaza. If the ‘Road Map’ continues, then George Bush and Ehud Olmert will go down in history as the founders of Hamastine, a terrorist haven in the heart of Israel.”

Throughout the demonstration, a group of students dressed in Fatah kefiyahs [Arab headdresses] and black Hamas hoods yelled out “Hamastine, Hamastine!” Behind them, a billboard size poster showed President Bush as the founding father of Hamastine. Indor admitted that the young people were putting on a show for the media, but “Bush and Olmert are putting on a show for the media too,” he said.

Israeli Arab Parties Join Leftist Protests Against Bush Visit

AP; Jonathan Lis

Israeli Arab Parties Join Leftist Protests Against Bush Visit

Far-right activists arrested as Bush arrives in Jerusalem; Gazans stage protest against Bush visit.



Israeli Arab party representatives joined left-wing protests around the country to demonstrate on Wednesday against U.S. President George W. Bush’s visit to Israel and the West Bank.

Bush arrived in Israel earlier Wednesday, on the first leg of a weeklong tour of the Middle East. During the three days he is in Israel, he was to meet with Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, as part of American efforts to reach a Middle East peace deal by the end of the year.

Several hundred Hadash activists participated in an anti-Bush demonstration in front of the American Consulate in West Jerusalem. They reached the site by foot due to the checkpoints and massive streets closures in the city, designed to facilitate the movement of Bush’s convoy.

Hadash Chairman Mohammed Barakeh said during the demonstration that “Bush totally and blindly adopts Israel’s most extreme positions and prevents progress toward a final-status agreement. Without international pressure on the government of Israel, there won’t be progress in the peace process.”

Balad party members also protested the visit at universities in Tel Aviv, Haifa and Jerusalem, and in Nazareth and Umm al-Fahm. Faction head Jamal Zahalka said in an a press announcement that “the ‘Israelified’ American position is becoming a vague echo of Israeli policy.”

Zahalka attacked Bush’s support for Israel as a Jewish state, saying, “The meaning of this is to erase the right of return [of Palestinian refugees] and to rule out to rights of millions of Palestinian citizens in Israel.”

Deputy Knesset Speaker Ahmed Tibi (United Arab List) said a Knesset speech on Wednesday that Bush is one of “the primary causes of the instability in the Middle East.” He blamed Bush for an unbalanced policy, adding, “He has the vision of someone more in love with a process than with peace itself.”

Earlier Wednesday, Jerusalem police detained far-right activists Itamar Ben-Gvir and Baruch Marzel while they protested outside President Shimon Peres` residence, ahead of U.S. President George W. Bush’s arrival at the location.

Nasrallah: Bush Visit Marks Black Day

The leader of Hezbollah said on Wednesday U.S. President George Bush’s visit to the Middle East marked a black day in the history of Arabs and Muslims.

Hassan Nasrallah said Bush was deceiving Arabs by trying to depict Iran, not Israel, as their enemy.

“We must record that today is a black day in the history of the Arab region and in the history of our Arab and Muslim nation,” Nasrallah told a Shi’ite Muslim religious gathering to the chants of “Death to America” and “Death to Israel”.

Hezbollah, backed by Iran and Syria, is a sworn enemy of Israel and is on Washington’s terrorist list. It fought a 34-day war with Israel last year and backs militant Palestinian groups.

“Bush comes to the region practicing the largest deception operation in history by saying that he is coming to protect Arabs and especially Gulf states from Iran,” Nasrallah said.

Gazans protest Bush

Thousands of Palestinian hard-liners in Gaza staged protests against Bush on Wednesday, burning Bush in effigy and underscoring the deep political split with West Bank moderates who welcomed the visit of the U.S. president as an important gesture to the Palestinians.

Supporters of the Islamic militant Hamas chanted “Death to America,” and burned U.S. and Israeli flags. A shadowy Al-Qaida-inspired group appeared in public for the first time with rifles and rocket-propelled grenade launchers, and uttered vague threats against U.S. targets.

The men wore black robes over above-the-ankle black pants. Some wore red headbands with the words “death squad.”

A spokesman for the group, who only gave his nom de guerre, Abu Hafs, said Bush was not welcome in the Palestinian territories. “We are coming, not to Bush in Tel Aviv, but God willing to Washington,” he said.

He described members of the terror network Al-Qaida as brothers, with similar methods and ideology, but added that there is no complete connection to his group.

A senior Abbas aide, Yasser Abed Rabbo, said the Bush visit was an important opportunity for the Palestinians to make their demands heard. “By receiving Bush, we are not conceding our rights,” Abed Rabbo said, addressing critics at home. “We are focusing on our rights before the entire world, and we will say there will be no peace in the region, and no peace in the world without people obtaining these rights.”

However, polls indicate that the vast majority of Palestinians are either indifferent to U.S. peace promises or deeply skeptical a deal with Israel can be negotiated. The U.S. administration is widely perceived in the Palestinian territories as a friend and ally of Israel, at the expense of the Palestinians.

In Hamas-ruled Gaza, about 5,000 supporters of the Islamic militant group marched in the streets to protest the visit, burning effigies of Bush and Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. Some held posters showing a dog biting Bush’s head, and of a young man stepping on Bush’s head with his shoe.

Mahmoud Zahar, a leading Hamas hard-liner, told Hamas radio that “whoever holds much hope for the visit will be disappointed.”

Even some Abbas supporters were critical of the U.S. leader.

Some 200 supporters allied with Abbas’ Fatah movement and other secular Palestinian factions urged Bush to abandon what they said was his pro-Israel bias.

“We call on President Bush in his visit to adopt an equal standard, and not to continue the biased policy in favor of the occupation government,” a senior Fatah leader in Gaza, Zakariya al-Agha, told the marchers.

Jerusalem Police sources said Tuesday that disturbances by extremist Israeli groups top the list of their concerns as the capital geared up for Bush’s three-day visit. The more than 8,000 police officers assigned to protect Jerusalem for the next three days are preparing for protests, both legal and illegal. Dozens of streets are to close to to traffic each

Police questioned Tuesday right-wing activists suspected of hanging up posters featuring images of Bush, Olmert and Peres wearing kaffiyehs. Officers said they did not think the activists had violated the law against incitement, but that they would probably be accused of vandalism.

Last week, police questioned right-wing activists accused of printing shirts with the logo of the outlawed far-right Kach group ahead of a protest scheduled to take place during Bush’s visit.

The Hadash party and the Almagor association of terror victims planned separate protests Wednesday; both groups have received permits for their demonstration. Police also expect supporters of Jonathan Pollard, an American citizen serving a life sentence for spying for Israel, to demonstrate in favor of his release from prison. Pollard supporters once reached the floor of the hotel where U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was staying in an effort to convey their demands.

Jerusalem District Police chief Aharon Franco said Tuesday that police have not received any intelligence indicating that terrorists plan to attack Bush’s convoy or any other targets in the city during the president’s visit. Franco said this week he was confident Bush’s visit would not be sabotaged.

Until Bush’s departure on Friday, Jerusalem residents will have to contend with the traffic jams expected as a result of the closing of more than 20 streets, including central thoroughfares. Click here for detailed information on security measures that will be taken in the city.

Protests to Bush Visit Are Underway

Baruch Gordon

Protests to Bush Visit Are Underway

U.S. President George Bush’ visit to Israel awakens activists on Israel’s political right. Political protests against a PA state are in planning.

Israel National News


This week’s upcoming visit of U.S. President George Bush to Israel has awakened activists on Israel’s political right, many of whom have kept a low profile since the 2005 evacuation from Gush Katif and Northern Samaria settlements.

On Monday afternoon at 2:30, Jerusalem’s Paris Square, situated near the official residence of the Prime Minister, was renamed Jonathan Pollard Square by the Municipality of Jerusalem. Activists for Pollard placed large signs on Israeli buses and around the city, calling for President Bush to release his “Prisoner of War.”

On Tuesday afternoon at 2:00, the One Jerusalem organization will create a human chain surrounding the Old City, to proclaim that Ehud Olmert does not have a national mandate from the people to divide the Holy City. Later in the day, starting at 6:00 PM, a coalition of activist groups will gather in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Har Homa to declare that building in the settlements will continue in defiance of the Olmert/Bush freeze on further expansion. From there, groups will set out to establish new hilltop communities throughout Judea and Samaria.

The coalition has collected donations from many countries and from 35 states in the USA. They have prepared the following poster for their ceremony tomorrow:

On Thursday at 7:00 pm, the SOS Save the Land and the Nation group will be holding a mass protest and prayer vigil at Zion Square in downtown Jerusalem.

In addition to the “Bush, Read Your Bible!” poster produced by “Am K’Lavee,” an anonymous poster showing Olmert behind jail bars is being pasted on billboards around the city.

The poster which reads, “Not Even Bush Can Save You,” refers to the criminal investigations pending against Olmert, and the claim that President Bush is coming to Israel to give a boost to Olmert’s dismal public image and political instability.

Nevertheless, the Almagor Terror Victims Association has announced a series of protest vigils outside the main locations where President Bush will hold meetings. They are planning to erect a gigantic poster, pictured below which shows President Bush as the founding father of “HAMAStine.”

The Almagor organization has also produced a video clip “Hamastine,” which shows America establishing a Hamas terrorist haven in the Land of Israel, to the tune of the “Star Spangled Banner.”

Another Bush protest poster was posted in a several Jerusalem neighborhoods but raised the ire of Jerusalemites who quickly tore it off the billboards. The poster is, however, being circulated over the internet and has been condemned by Israeli and American Jewish groups.

Mr. Malcolm Hoenlein, Executive Vice Chairman of the Conference of Major American Jewish Organizations, said that the poster is an “obscene depiction which is not only a violation of the truth, but of every sensibility, and is only counterproductive and insulting.” He added, “If you have points to make that can be done intelligently with facts and discussion, do so, but not this kind of blasphemous poster.”

Joshua Block, Spokesman for The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), said that the poster is simply not true:

The overwhelming majority of Americans of all faiths and backgrounds support America’s unbreakable bond with Israel. As Americans, we share a fundamental set of values with the people of Israel that cherish life, and liberty and freedom of speech, and a special determination to fight the forces of intolerance and hate that seem to have found such fertile ground in the Arab world.

Baruch Marzel of the far right Hazit party said that the poster was “in bad taste.” but added that it “expresses the sentiments of many Israelis who are appalled that a United States president would lend his hand to a plan to divide the holy city of Jerusalem.”

Over ten thousand policemen and security forces will be stationed in Jerusalem during the Presidential visit to keep protestors and any possible security threats far away from US President Bush. Traffic in the city is expected to be paralyzed. All cars parked in the area of the King David Hotel, and along the routes of the Bush motorcade, will be towed away to the outskirts of the city.