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PODCAST: Taking a Newspaper to Task

It is no secret the main stream media has turned to the Left and actively supports liberal causes. As such, trying to get a conservative comment printed is next to impossible. This was one of the key reasons why I cancelled my subscription to the Tampa Bay Times a couple of years ago and started the Tampa Bay Conservatives web site. Enough is enough.

I am obviously not alone in this regard as I know many conservatives angered by the press. To illustrate, of the people in our Tampa Bay Trump Club, I have yet to meet anyone who subscribes to the Tampa Bay Times. It is simply loathed by conservatives and labeled “Fake News.” I also see this in other newspapers in Democrat-controlled urban strongholds where they pander to the Left, such as Portland, Seattle, Chicago, New York, etc.

I have offered suggestions for “Confronting the News Media,” including picketing and boycotting, but one of the most effective means to protest the media is simply the printed word which, unfortunately, few people use to express their displeasure.

Enter Larry Marlin, an old friend and conservative from Bryan, Texas (near College Station and Texas A & M University). For quite some time, Larry subscribed to the local newspaper, The Bryan-College Station Eagle. However, he began to notice a shift in the editorial slant of the paper and brought it to the attention of the Editor there. Unfortunately, the liberal slant went from bad to worse. Finally, he could stand it no more and wrote the following letter recently to the newspaper which I found particularly interesting:

Dear Editorial Board:

Since August 10th, I have kept copies of your newspaper and reviewed them for bias. As you may recall, you printed a letter I wrote saying most of “The Eagle” bias comes from your Associated Press articles. I later wrote a letter saying I had been mistaken and your paper was rife with bias. The second letter was based on material you printed after being “woke” by BLM and the rest of the “protesters.” You did not print that letter. I did say I was not a member of the “cancel culture” and, rather than cancel my subscription, I would see if your paper made any effort to reduce bias.

I have reviewed each issue since 8/10. You have not improved. If anything, you have gotten worse. During the period 8/10 through 9/4 you have printed 28 left wing editorials and 9 right wing ones. In editorial cartoons you did better with 5 right wing and 3 left wing. Concerning the cartoons, it is interesting that several days after Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s hypocritical visit to get her hair washed, you finally printed something about it in a cartoon relegated to the bottom of the editorial page. Other than that, as near as I can tell, you completely ignored the story.

Of course, your AP articles continue to be overwhelmingly left wing. I have not seen any indication of an attempt on your part to reduce this left wing bias. I doubt you have contacted AP concerning their outrageously dishonest presentations of the news. I don’t have time to list all the left-biased articles by AP. I would mention Steve People’s articles about the Democrat convention compared to his articles about the Republican convention — day and night.

Anyway, I will be cancelling my subscription. I just can’t imagine you will ever change. Should you surprise me and decide to make needed changes such as blasting AP, hiring a few conservatives, balancing your editorials, writing more unifying local editorials, or anything else please let me know. I might resubscribe.

Sincerely,
Lawrence P. Marlin*
Sep 4, 2020

What I liked about this letter is that it wasn’t ranting and raving, but rather, a matter-of-fact dissertation as to why someone was unsubscribing. If I was the Editor, I would consider it carefully and not dismiss it out of hand as it represents a legitimate concern of a reader. If Larry’s data is correct, the Editor should now realize his slip is showing and should take steps to correct it before all of his conservative readers abandon him. The reality though is, as a supporter of the far-Left, the Editor couldn’t care less and is willing to sacrifice readership to preserve the Left’s dogma. This is essentially no different than the attitude of the mayors of Democrat controlled cities where their citizen’s lives and businesses are threatened. This, of course, is reckless behavior and speaks volumes of their priorities of choosing Democrat policies over the safety and well-being of their citizens.

Larry’s letter also happens to make a handy template for writing your own letter to other newspapers. For those of you who have difficulty penning a Letter to the Editor, simply copy Larry’s letter, update it with data specific to your area and send it in (preferably by e-mail). If enough people complain of the unfair tactics of the press, the better the chances of getting some honest news reporting. To do nothing is to surrender to the press.

I’ll leave it with you.

(* Letter written with the permission of the author)

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – Also, I have a NEW book, “Before You Vote: Know How Your Government Works”, What American youth should know about government, available in Printed, PDF and eBook form. This is the perfect gift for youth!

EDITORS NOTE: This Bryce is Right podcast is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved. All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

MediaMatters exposes who really influenced the election — hint, its not the Russians

As political scientist Bernard Cohen put it, the press “may not be successful much of the time in telling people what to think, but it is stunningly successful in telling them what to think about.”

The Harvard Kennedy School’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy analyzed news coverage during the 2016 general election from January 1st to November 8th, 2016. The study  titled “News Coverage of the 2016 General Election: How the Press Failed the Voters” flies in the face of the narrative that the Russians gave the election to Trump. Even MediaMatters for America agrees with the Harvard study and goes further to blame the “Fakestream Media” for Hillary Clinton’s loss.

In a MediaMatters column titled “Post-Mortem: How 2016 Broke Political Journalism” Matt Gertz writes:

The [2016 Presidential] campaign broke political journalism. Despite the vast differences between the two candidates, the message media consumers heard from journalists was that to an equal extent, both candidates were flawed.

In fact, according to Harvard University’s Shorenstein Center for Media, Politics and Public Policy, which reviewed an analysis of news reports in major newspapers and cable and broadcast networks from January 1, 2015, through November 7, 2016, the conventional candidate actually received a higher proportion of negative coverage over the course of the campaign.

general-election-media-bias

Chart courtesy of Harvard University’s Shorenstein Center for Media, Politics and Public Policy.

Gertz goes on to point out:

In a prescient July 2015 essay, reporter and Clinton biographer Jonathan Allen explained that over the course of her career, “coverage of Hillary Clinton differs from coverage of other candidates for the presidency,” and warned that the “difference encourages distortions that will ultimately affect the presidential race.” He pointed out the reason public perception of Clinton is distorted: because “the media assumes that Clinton is acting in bad faith unless there’s hard evidence otherwise” and outlets are willing to serve as a vector for unhinged, unfair, or false attacks on her character.

Here, according to MediaMatters, is the real reason for Hillary Clinton’s loss in one graphic:

mediamatters-headlines_emails

It was media coverage of Hillary’s email servers, stupid, not the Russians.

Gertz concludes:

Overall, however, editors and executives at major media outlets failed in their responsibility to present to their audience the full picture of the election in proper context, instead providing disproportionate scrutiny to relatively minor Clinton “scandals” in a way that ultimately resulted in a skewed picture of the election.

And that’s because the political press was unable to adapt its methods and practices to a dramatically different election season. In typical elections, news outlets often treat both major presidential candidates as relatively similar — comparing their flaws, scrutinizing their respective scandals, and framing the vote as a choice between two comparable options.

But this was not a normal election between two comparable choices. That sort of equivalency could not hope to provide viewers and readers with an accurate picture of this unusual race. And on balance, the press did not rise to this unique challenge. 

Even after 16 months on the campaign trail, political journalists never figured out how to accurately depict the unprecedented nature of Trump’s candidacy…

[Emphasis added]

So, even MediaMatters says it was the Fakestream Media who did in Hillary Clinton.

RELATED ARTICLE: OBAMA BLAMES RUSSIA For Hillary’s Loss, But NEW HARVARD STUDY Exposes Who REALLY Interfered In Outcome Of Our Elections

RELATED VIDEO: The Worst of MSNBC in 2016.

PODCAST: On the Muslim Migrant Crisis in Sweden and Across Europe

Kent Ekeroth, a Jewish Deputy of the Sweden Democrats in the national parliament, the Riksdag, was a guest on the Sunday, January 31, 2016,Lisa Benson Show. Benson, Richard Cutting, Advisory Board Member and this writer participated in the discussion with Ekeroth.  The topics discussed during the segment covered various aspects of the current migrant crisis in Sweden and Europe caused by the flood of one million asylees and migrants in 2015 who penetrated the broken Schengen borderless system. LISTEN to the podcast.

New Year’s Eve, the sexual assaults in Cologne, Germany by 1,000 North African and Arab looking migrants was evidence of threats to native European women and their communities. We posted on the graphic violence perpetrated daily in Germany and the rising call for the resignation of German Chancellor n Angela Merkel. Then there was the disturbing Europol report that 10,000 migrant children have gone missing, presumed to victims of sex trafficking and slavery.

In Sweden, 200 men went on a rampage attacking Moroccan migrants at the central Stockholm rail station provoked by the murder of a 23 year old woman at a reception center. The Swedish Interior Minister ordered  the expulsion of 80,000 migrants, virtually half of the 160,000 that poured into the country in 2015. The 23 year old woman victim was killed trying to stop an altercation involving a 15 year old Somali migrant.  One of the more than 35,000 unaccompanied minors who entered Sweden, four fifth of them young men.

Kent Ekeroth, Sweden Democrat Jewish deputy

Kent Ekeroth, Sweden Democrats, MP, the Riksdag.

A Politico Magazine article on “Europe’s Man Problem”, noted this about migrant demographics in Sweden:

According to Swedish government statistics, as of the end of November, 71 percent of all applicants for asylum to Sweden in 2015 were male. More than 21 percent of all migrants to Sweden were classified as unaccompanied minors, representing more than half of all minor migrants to the country. For accompanied minors, the sex ratio was about 1.16 boys for every one girl. But for unaccompanied minors, the ratio was 11.3 boys for every one girl. In other words, the Swedish case confirms IOM’s statistic that more than 90 percent of unaccompanied minors are male.

Sweden’s current ruling left Social Democrats and the center right Alliance Party condoned the opening of mass Muslim immigration over several decades. Muslims in Sweden account for 700,000 of the country’s 9.8 million population.  Jews, in contrast account for less than 20,000 of Sweden’s population. Ekeroth mother is Jewish who emigrated from Poland. Ekeroth had served as an intern at the Swedish Embassy in Tel Aviv in 2006. He visited Israel in 2014 as part of a delegation of foreign Jewish parliamentarians.

Ekeroth’s debates with Margot Wallstrom, Foreign Minister of the ruling Social Democrats occurred over her accusations that Israel should be investigated for alleged “extrajudicial killings”. He considers Swedish Foreign Minister Wallstrom both “gullible and antagonistic.”

On January 19, 2016, Itamar Marcus, executive director of Palestine Media Watch (PMW) followed up Ekeroth’s actions with a presentation to members of the Alliance and other parties in the Riksdag. At the conclusion of the presentation, Marcus proposed a resolution be introduced   by concerned MPs to end Swedish funding of Palestinian Authority education and media programs demonizing Jews and hatred of Israelis.

Watch this PMW video of the Swedish Parliamentarians presentation on Palestinian incitement of violence and anti-Semitic hatred:

In 2014, Ekeroth and the Sweden Democrats brought a bill before the Riksdag attempting to overturn the budget for the hundreds of millions of kroner in Palestinian Authority funding that was opposed by the remaining seven parties.  Center right Liberal or Alliance parties and the current left Social Democrats, Ekeroth said, funded hundreds of millions of kroner for the Palestinian Authority that had engaged in incitement to violence and demonization of Israeli Jews. The Sweden Democrats introduced the bill in 2014 during the budget debates to stop all PA funding.

When we asked him following the Lisa Benson Show, what his reaction was to the resolution proposed by PMW during the January 19, 2016 presentation, he replied:

I held the debate with [Foreign Minister] Wallstrom. Then other parties met with PMW from the Alliance-parties. What’s funny though is that when they were in government and had the power they did nothing to stop the funding the PA.

On the position of the Sweden Democrats in the Riksdag, Ekeroth said that the party platform includes reduction of personal and business taxes, preservation of the existing welfare system, but zero tolerance for mass Muslim immigration and asylum.  He considers as legitimate refugees, not unlike his immigrant mother, those fleeing a conflict or persecution. Migrants, however, are those traveling to take advantage of benefits “provided by a naïve system” like that in Sweden and many EU countries. Once admitted, he said, the asylees can bring in others through family reunification or workforce immigration. During the period 2015 to early 2016, more than 200,000 so-called asylees and migrants entered Sweden. Regarding the smorgasbord of benefits available to migrants, Ekeroth noted that in 2005, the seven other parties in the Riksdag endorsed expansion of benefits to include free health, free schools and even assistance in starting a business.

When asked about the recent Interior Minister’s expulsion order, he doubts that the police can round up more than 4,000 a year. The rest may leave for other EU countries or go into hiding.

Regarding the attack by 200 Swedes against Moroccans at the Stockholm central railway station, he doesn’t condone violence. However, he said it was a reflection the police and state haven’t protected Swedish citizens from violence and petty crime. On the question of sexual assaults by migrants, he indicated they have been grossly over represented since 1975. He pointed towards Swedish crime statistics for 2015 that indicated over 41% of those convicted were non-citizens. Further, he said if you included the sizable Swedish Muslim population the proportion would be well over 50%.

When asked about how Swedish youth reacted to these developments, he suggested that while the Sweden Democrats are the second largest party in the Riksdag, they tend to be less politically involved. Sweden men are more sympathetic to the programs of the Swedish Democrats; while female voters aged 18 to 24 in surveys are not as inclined as they are more prone to social pressures. He credits that to the treatment of the Sweden Democrats by the media that by turns calls the party “far right wing,”  “racist,” “anti-Immigrant,” and dismisses the party as “stupid peasants”.  Ekeroth said the state TV and media are overwhelmingly pro-immigrants. Surveys in Sweden he cited showed that 75% of working journalists are left wingers.  He said that some alternate media has been created, including one developed by the Sweden Democrats. But overall the media situation is biased.

When the matter of Sweden’s small Jewish community arose, Ekeroth has tried to convince them that mass immigration was problematic.  He said their opinion reflected their support for Muslim mass immigration. In effect, he said, the Jewish community told him that “they don’t want to awaken the bear that sleeps.”

In light of the current migrant crisis, he said who would have thought 20 years ago that today the Eastern European countries of Poland, Hungary and Czechoslovakia would be the saviors of Europe. The dialogue continues with Kent Ekeroth. He returns to The Lisa Benson Show for a reprise on Sunday, February 7, 2016.

RELATED ARTICLES:

Germany placing trouble-making migrants in security-fenced camps

Finally, Europe Is Waking Up to Dangers of Multiculturalism

EDITORS NOTE: This column with podcast originally appeared in the New English Review.

LIKELY FOES: CNN’s Liberal vs. Rising Conservatism in Black Americans

AUSTIN, Texas, /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Brad O’Leary, publisher of TheOLearyReport.com, former NBC News Radio/Westwood One talk show host, author of the The United States Citizens’ Handbook and former feature writer for USA Today Weekend magazine, is bringing light to the current rise stemming from longstanding historical roots in conservatism within the Black community in his latest Op-Ed piece, listed below and on TheOLearyReport.com:

How much of the Black population will support Republicans on the three major issues in the 2016 Presidential election?

When George Bush ran for president he got 8% of the Black population’s vote. There was a time when Republican candidates could only count for 8% of the Irish population’s vote. It is perhaps time for the Black voters to feel just as the Irish did, that the Democratic Party deserted them.

According to CNN’s most recent poll, the three major issues that American voters will focus on will be immigration, abortion and guns.

Now, who am I to say that CNN’s liberal bias, if correct may be a danger for the Democratic Party?

CNN will tell you that according to the polls, that the Democrats will be favored. However if you look at that result and the results from other polls in judging Black population responses, it may explain one of the reasons that Donald Trump seems to have the support of 20% of the Black population.

In addition to political polls there is an incredible amount of consumer polling that has been done on the Black population. That polling should frighten the Chairman of the Democratic Party.

First let’s take the Second Amendment and gun ownership. There is no question that gun control was historically a major political effort started at the beginning of the Civil War and was principally designed by the leadership of the Ku Klux Klan, who did not want Black people, especially in the South, to own guns, not even for hunting.

In some places in the South, if a Black person wanted to hunt and keep in mind that most families were fed that way, they had to get permission from the sheriff for a twenty-four hour period for hunting. We have heard stories from many people about that era, including from Condoleezza Rice, who has always supported the 2nd Amendment because her family historically owned guns namely to protect themselves from the Ku Klux Klan.

Today we have many significant Black leaders like Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke and Detroit Police Chief James Craig, who both urged people to buy guns to protect themselves.

We have seen a number of consumer polls indicate that a majority of the Black community, following recent riots, does not fear the police. Instead they fear the drug dealers and the hoodlums who are trying to stir up division and hatred making Black neighborhoods and streets unsafe. It is no wonder that the percentage of the Black population that supports the Second Amendment has increased in the last few years. Recently during the Miss Universe contest, one of the contestants, Miss South Carolina USA, Meagan Pinckney was asked about gun ownership, presumptuous but possibly by a judge, who might have believed that since she was Black and from the South she would give a gun control answer. Contestant Pinckney stunned the television audience by showing her knowledge and support of firearm ownership. Her opinion is not just from her but it is from her peers as well.

Hillary Clinton has made her position clear. She would make it difficult for anyone who is White, Asian or Black to buy a gun, particularly in the cities. At the same time Donald Trump and all the other candidates for president are the strongest group of 2nd Amendment supporters that this country has ever seen.

The second issue CNN touts is such a clearly a Democratic majority supported issue. This issue is abortion.

Now there is no question that a majority of voters believe in a woman’s right to choose. But in a paradox of thinking, a greater majority of Americans think that abortion is either manslaughter or morally unacceptable in today’s society. That doesn’t include the rather substantial number of Americans who believe that 3rd term abortions where a fetus can be seen as moving, breathing and is deemed capable of life outside the womb, is acceptable in massive numbers.

The number of people in the Black population who believe that abortion is morally unacceptable is greater than anyone has ever believed.  The reason that Proposition 9, a heated topic of its own, which would allow gays to marry in California, was defeated at the ballot box largely due to the rallying of Black Christian voters who voted against it in massive numbers. This supports the concept that the Black population is actually quite conservative.

If you do not believe me, do your own test. In New York, five Black fetuses are aborted for every one White fetus. So go to the Black churches in a very liberal city like New York and ask the pastor and congregation what they think of abortion?

Frankly every time Hillary fights for more abortions and protecting the bargain basement selling of fetuses by Planned Parenthood she is also turning off church going Black women. Now that is an issue that no one can claim any of the Republican presidential candidates, including Trump, doesn’t have a clear opinion on. That opinion is there needs to be a stop to aborting Black babies.

Now we get to the third issue that CNN is so excited about, the issue of immigration, which clearly makes Trump and most Republicans extremists. Once again let’s consider how the Black population views immigration and some of the other effects that come from immigration. A rapper by the name of Azealia Banks unexpectedly reflected the conservative outlook of the Black population with her recent pro-Trump comments,

“Do you think it’s bad that I sort of agree with Trump’s stance on immigration? Not for any reason other than black Americans still not having been paid reparations for slavery and the influx [of] INTERNATIONAL immigrants (not just Mexicans), are sucking up state aid, and government money, space in schools, quality of life etc.?? It’s selfish, but America has been really good at convincing me that everyone else’s problems are more important than my own. I want my f*****g money!!…Me first!!!…Thoughts?”

Two areas of life that are directly impacted by immigration are job creation and drivers licenses.

Let me be clear about what the Black population thinks about immigration. For the most part they think the same as Whites and Asians. They think it favors Wall Street, it boosts corporate profit and it increases the value of many stocks. And no one polled is aware of how big immigration is every year. Only 10% of all Americans select the correct immigration numbers.

The Black population is opposed to Hillary’s immigration policy and they are opposed to the attempt by states to let illegals (“Sorry Mr. President that is my word.”) have driver’s licenses without automobile insurance. There is such a law that was just passed in California and the governors in other red states are completely supportive of giving illegals documentation. Now if anybody out there would like to see the polling that proves that this is true, I would be happy to send it to you. 65% of Hispanic citizens of the United States also opposed driver’s licenses without insurance. No surprise because illegal Hispanics hiding from “White” justice aren’t hiding in White neighborhoods.

The Black population believes and correctly so, that Hispanics take jobs away from them, particularly Hispanic teenagers versus Black teenagers.

EDITORS NOTE: For more analysis and commentary from pollster Brad O’Leary, please contact: Radio/TV Show Bookings: grassrootsbehavioral@gmail.com or (737) 704-1578. Readers may download The United States Citizens’ Handbook at no cost: www.USCH.us . Please visit: www.TheOLearyReport.com.

A Saba answers his Granddaughter’s Concerns about the Threats to Israel

Earlier today, my granddaughter, Elana Lipkin, wrote me about her concerns about the media’s treatment and threats to Israel in this latest rocket war with Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad in Gaza.  ‘Lana, as we call her, won a scholarship last summer from her local Jewish Federation to spend five weeks visiting concentration and death camps in the Czech Republic and Poland before  spending a month in Israel on a National Federation of Temple Youth (NFTY) program.  ‘Lana is very active at her family temple frequently serving as a cantorial assistant during Friday evening services given her beautiful singing voice recognized in her high school and regional choral assemblies. She is also a talented dancer. We are very proud of her achievements, a credit to her parents and grandparents.

Elana and a friend donned IDF fatigues and got a taste of what it’s like to train for the IDF at the Gadna training center.

Elana and a friend donned IDF fatigues and got a taste of what it’s like to train for the IDF at the Gadna training center, July 2013.

Last summer, we posted on her prize winning essay and poetry after climbing up the snake path to the top of Masada overlooking the Dead Sea.  (See thisConnecticut Jewish Ledger article “KOLOT-Passing the Torch”). While in Israel, ‘Lana put in a brief training stint in a GADNA (youth battalion) where she learned firsthand what para-military training Israeli youths go through before entering the IDF.  That stint included her familiarization of weapons on a firing range.

The following is an exchange of email between ‘Lana and her Saba (grandfather in Hebrew) that might be used by other concerned supporters of Israel, when their children or grandchildren ask them to explain why this rocket war is happening?   Further, it also illustrates what they can do to support Israeli civilians and IDF service personnel, as well as, keep informed of developments in Operation Preventive Edge.

What follows is the exchange of emails between 17 year old ‘Lana and her Saba.

Lana’s email to Saba:

Hi Saba!

I know it’s fairly early there, but I’m sure you’re up already. The situation in Israel these past few days has really been worrying me. I care about Israel so deeply and it pains me to see it in danger. I am also bothered by the lies the media spreads and the ignorance of those around me regarding what’s actually occurring. I was wondering if you could do two things for me, first of all, I’d love any information you could give to me on the Operation going on right now. Second of all, do you know of anything I could possibly do to help Israel right now?
Thank you so much!

I love you very much and miss you lots, I hope you’re doing well.

-Lana

shabat shalom terrorism will not stop usMy Email to Lana:

Like you I am pained by the bias shown in the media towards the plight of Israel under the daily onslaught of literally hundreds of rockets launched from Gaza by terrorist groups Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ). These are foreign terrorists groups designated by our State Department and Israel whose charters seek the destruction of the Jewish State of Israel.  Hamas is an offshoot of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood in Gaza. The PIJ is backed by Iran.

As Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu said:  “No other country lives under such a threat. Israel will not tolerate the firing of rockets on our cities and towns,” Prime Minister Benjamin Neyanyahu. We have therefore significantly expanded our operations against Hamas and the other terrorist organizations in Gaza.”

The IDF conducts daily air, naval and artillery attacks against hundreds of target in Gaza to destroy Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad rockets and launching sites while endeavoring to avoid civilian casualties.  Yesterday, cousins of mine and friends in Jerusalem were shocked by one of the longer range rockets that fell nearby in Ma’ale Adumim. Most disturbing were the two rockets fired from Lebanon by terrorist group Hezbollah that landed in northern Israel. That event may have caused Israelis in the north to seek safety in bomb shelters as they did during the Second Lebanon War in 2006.  Much of the Hamas and Hezbollah rockets used against Israel are supplied by Iran or manufactured locally. Your cousin’s United Synagogue Youth (USY) tour group may be prevented from traveling on to Israel from Europe as rockets are ranging on Ben Gurion Airport.

Yesterday, I posted an article on Operation Protective Edge– Is Iran Behind Rocket Blitz on Israel?– and will do more in the coming days. Israel may have to make the momentous decision to go into Gaza to destroy the rocket inventories, launching sites and command infrastructure.  This is a dangerous phase which could result in significant casualties to both civilians and Hamas and Islamic Jihad in Gaza, as well as IDF forces and even Israeli civilians.
During Operation Cast Lead in 2008-2009, we wrote extensively about the experience of Zach Rowen – Taylor, a young American lonesome soldier who hailed from California and was among the elite Givati Brigade units that entered urban areas in northern Gaza.  We wrote him in a January 4, 2009, Iconoclast post, “A Proud American Mother of an IDF Soldier”.  I know as a former US Army officer that fighting in urban areas is grueling, dangerous and unfortunate casualties may mount.  But, Israel may have no choice but to do what Zach Rowen-Taylor and his mates in the Givati Brigade had to do in Operation Cast Lead.  Perhaps if Israel had stayed in Gaza in 2009, notwithstanding the inauguration of President Obama, it might have achieved victory against these terrorist groups with their arsenal of rockets. However, the reality was that arsenal was replenished by Iran and terrorist groups in the Sinai using smuggling tunnels below the Egyptian Gaza frontier.

Those smuggling tunnels were only closed off when Egypt’s military overthrew its former President Mohammed Morsi, a Muslim Brotherhood leader and Hamas supporter, last year. He was replaced by former Defense Minister and now President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi.  He plugged up those smuggling tunnels preventing more weapons from Iran reaching Hamas and the PIJ and possibly stopping the flight of terrorist leaders from Gaza in the current Israeli Operation Preventive Edge.

Still Hamas and the PIJ have an estimated 10,000 to 12,000 Rockets including longer range rockets supplied by Iran before those tunnels were destroyed by Egypt. That means that this could be Israel’s longest war in Gaza, possibly exceeding the 22 days of Operation Cast Lead in 2009 and the eight days of Operation Pillar of Defense in November 2012, just 20 months ago. Hamas and the PIJ have positioned launching sites in schools, office buildings, and even residences using its civilians including children as human shields. Israel goes to great limits to avoid civilian causalities sent text message warnings on cells and even aerial missile “knocks” on roofs of suspected targets warning people to flee.  Fortunately, those dramatic Israel Iron Dome anti-rocket missile interceptions heading to strikes in population centers knock out terror rockets before they reach their targets. They have a 90% success rate.

Remember, Israel is America’s only reliable and democratic ally in the troubled Middle East. The vast majority of Americans support Israel because we share the same Judeo-Christian values.

For information on groups in Israel treating civilians, you might consult the website of American Friends of Magen David Adom.  One of the groups that provide social and other support for IDF soldiers is American Friends of LIBI. You might check out its Facebook page.   To keep abreast of developments in Operation Protective Edge, you might look at the Live blog at The Jerusalem Post.

Your commitment to Israel as a young Zionist is both heartfelt and refreshing among your generation of young American Jews.  You can act as a spokesperson in your community to provide the EMET- the truth about what Israel is facing.  Tonight at Kabbalat Shabbat services pray for the safety of Israel and its defenders the young men and women of the IDF on the frontlines defending this Jewish nation. You met them during your GADNA training last summer in Israel.

I thought the attached graphic sent to me by a colleague and intelligence expert, Ilana Freedman, whose son served in the IDF, might express the feelings of you and countless other Americans, Jewish and non-Jewish, who are supporters of Israel -The Eagle and the Flag.  Israel. It is the most ancient of Hebrew Prayers, the priestly benediction, as you know it.

Kol Hakavod (Outstanding), Ahava (Much Love) v Shabbat shalom (peaceful sabbath).  Am Yisrael Chai! (The People Israel Lives!)

Saba

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on The New English Review.