The Micah Report Columns Thoughts Predictions About Micah Archives Contact
The Micah Report
Head of Hamas Shouts V
By Micah Halpern

Saturday August 30, 2014

I've Been Thinking:

Yesterday Ismail Haniyeh, the head of Hamas in Gaza, took a tour of certain parts of Gaza.

Haniyeh flashed the V sign everywhere he went.

From our Western POV it is hard to look at all the destruction in Gaza and interpret it as, in any manner whatsoever, success. And yet, Hamas does just that.

Hamas sees and evaluates success very differently than we in the West do. From Hamas' POV they emerged victorious because there are still Hamas leaders that were not assassinated and Hamas fighters that were not killed. Hamas sees a victory in the fact that they are still able to fire rockets into Israel.

Hamas sees a victory when there is still one man standing, still able to speak and shout and fight.

The West does not see loss and victory in total terms. The West assesses greater and lesser, better or worse. For the West, assessment is a series of evaluations in shades of gray.

For Hamas it is total, all or nothing, black and white. As long as
Hamas can still rebuild and continue to fight, they have emerged successful. And they are triumphant.

Read my latest book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_gw?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=halpern%2C+micah

To reprint my essays contact sales (at) www.featurewell.com
Follow MicahHalpern on Twitter



Abbas Laces Into Hamas
By Micah Halpern

Friday August 29, 2014

I've Been Thinking:

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas laced into Hamas in a publicly broadcast interview.

Abbas said that the current ceasefire is identical to the very first ceasefire agreement proposed by Egypt - which Hamas refused to accept. He then suggested that all the civilian deaths that took place were as a result of that refusal. So Hamas is responsible for all those deaths.

Abbas further said that he was personally assured by the Khalad Mashal, the leader of Hamas, that Hamas had nothing to do with the kidnapping and killing of the three Israeli teenagers Eyal Yifrah, Naftali Frankel and Gilad Shaar. And then, just a few days later, another Hamas leader publicly claimed responsibility and involvement for the kidnappings and murders.

One of the points Abbas was making ws how important it is that the rebuilding of Gaza be done under the supervision of the Palestinian Authority, not Hamas. He, Mahmoud Abbas, will supervise the project.

Judging from his tone during the broadcast, it seems that what most irked Abbas is that Hamas stated that they can and will determine whether there is quiet with Israel or whether they will attack again and go to war.

Abbas said this is not the unity agreement that he signed with Hamas. The Palestinian president asserted that only the PA can make that declaration.

We have to watch this tension closely. It looks like Abbas is making a move. It looks like he is preparing to assert his influence and flex his power and maybe - maybe even take back Gaza from Hamas.

Read my latest book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_gw?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=halpern%2C+micah

To reprint my essays contact sales (at) www.featurewell.com
Follow MicahHalpern on Twitter



Boycotting Israel Will Not Work
By Micah Halpern

Thursday August 28, 2014

I've Been Thinking:

There has been an uptick in anti-Israel sentiment in the Western world - in Europe and in the United States. The reality is that it is old fashioned anti-Semitism with a thin veneer, a coating, of anti-Israel rhetoric.

The most organized group promoting this ugliness is the BDS movement. BDS stands for Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions. They movement spouts lies and speaks half-truths and promotes the boycotting Israeli products. Their invective is filled with hate under the guise of promoting justice for Palestinians.

Regardless of what the BDS movement or any other movement has to say, boycotts have virtually no impact on Israel.

Here is why:

Israel's economy is insulated against these kinds of boycotts because of the nature of what Israel produces and what it exports. The only real exception is agricultural exports and they compose only 2% of total Israeli exports. And even that can be protected.

95% of Israel's exports are B2B, business to business, which means that they are not actually sold to consumers. Many of those businesses are subsidiaries of multinationals firms. They produce small components of larger pieces and the multi-national companies are only interested in the price of the product and no one knows what is inside those products. The same is true for the pharmaceutical industry. Some are products wholly developed and produced in Israel and some are products in which Israel contributes elements to the finished product.

And the companies that are doing business with Israel have felt no impact from the BDS movement at all.

It is industries in the West Bank, along with the agricultural sector, that have felt the pinch. But that is due to the EU boycott and their enforcement. But Israeli products, even from West Bank industries, are finding different markets willing and even excited about buying their products.

I know about the BDS movement in terms of the economic effect. The real impact though is on young people on campus - especially those students who may actually fall victim to the bile and ugly rhetoric.
That is where my worry lies.

Read my latest book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_gw?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=halpern%2C+micah

To reprint my essays contact sales (at) www.featurewell.com
Follow MicahHalpern on Twitter



What Hamas Wants From Ceasefire
By Micah Halpern

Wednesday August 27, 2014

I've Been Thinking:

A long term cease fire has been reached between Gaza and Israel.

The exact details have not been made public. But from leaks it seems that Rafa, the crossing between Gaza and Egypt, will be opened. And Israel will let humanitarian and reconstruction materials into Gaza. And finally, in 30 days, peace talks between Israel and the PA will resume.

There were huge celebrations in Gaza after the cease fire was announced. Gazans flashed the V sign as a symbol of victory.

I ask you - how could this be a victory for Hamas and Gaza? From what we know thus far from the agreement, Hamas achieved almost none of their demands.

The answer is that Hamas needed to show Gazans that there was a victory so they went out to set the example and led the celebrations - despite having won nothing.

And that leads to the next question. How long will the ceasefire last?

That depends on Hamas' perception. If Hamas still feels strong enough, they will break the ceasefire because they see that they have more to gain. However, if Hamas has been bruised and beaten and their weapons are depleted, if Hamas does not have anything left to fight with, then the ceasefire will hold - until they rebuild their caches and restock their arsenal.

It sounds complicated but it is not. Hamas cannot stop. Hamas is sworn to Israel's destruction. The ceasefire is simply a time-out, a time to replenish and a time to reload.

Read my latest book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_gw?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=halpern%2C+micah

To reprint my essays contact sales (at) www.featurewell.com
Follow MicahHalpern on Twitter



ISIS is in Gaza
By Micah Halpern

Tuesday August 26, 2014

I've Been Thinking:

Hamas has been insisting that there is no connection between ISIS and them. They say that there is no ISIS at all in Gaza.

Hamas is lying. It looks like there is a definite ISIS presence in Gaza.

I watched a video with ISIS members shooting rockets into Israel.

YNET reported that there has been a real uptick in internet activity from Gaza on websites that are ISIS affiliates.

Egypt, which has been sensitive to the growth of extremist Islamic groups, has asserted that ISIS has successfully recruited young men of Gaza to join their movement.

And there was an ISIS rally that took place in Gaza in June.

All this lead us to conclude that ISIS, the real thing, is getting off the ground in Gaza.

This is beyond dangerous.

Read my latest book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_gw?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=halpern%2C+micah

To reprint my essays contact sales (at) www.featurewell.com
Follow MicahHalpern on Twitter



Hamas is Like ISIS
By Micah Halpern

Monday August 25, 2014

I've Been Thinking:

Since the beginning of the current conflict between Hamas and Israel, Hamas has been extremely adroit at messaging.

The Hamas message has been on point at every juncture. Hamas has been successful at framing the discussion and deflecting almost all responsibility. Their message has been clear and simple: Israel is killing innocent civilians.

Try as they might to cast Hamas in the light of a terrorist group, Israel has not successfully redirected the coverage.

But recently, the office of the Israeli prime minister began drawing the parallel between ISIS and Hamas. After the execution of Jim Foley, they intensified the parallels.

Hamas took exception to the comparison.

And last week there was a major synapse.

Last week Hamas executed dozens of Gazans accused of collaborating with Israel. The still pictures were plastered all across the web and on the front pages of newspapers. The Hamas executioners were wearing black and their faces were covered with black hoods.

And the parallel stuck.

The prisoners had their hands tied behind their backs and they were kneeling. Everyone seeing the photos drew the ISIS/Hamas link.

Hamas claimed it was not so. They issued a new directive that all future executions not be done in public and not be photographed. But here is the problem. Like ISIS, Hamas wants people to see the executions because they want to sew the seeds of fear - in their own people. The more fear, the greater the power Hamas wields over the 1.8 million Gazans.

Hamas and ISIS are not identical. But they are very, very similar.

Read my latest book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_gw?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=halpern%2C+micah

To reprint my essays contact sales (at) www.featurewell.com
Follow MicahHalpern on Twitter



Poll: Gazans Want Ceasefire -- But
By Micah Halpern

Sunday August 24, 2014

I've Been Thinking:

I am not surprised.

A new survey was released on Saturday by the Palestine Center for Public Opinion.

1000 people in Gaza participated in the door to door survey. The main questions they were asked were about a ceasefire with Israel.

The overwhelming majority of those polled agreed that they want a long term ceasefire with Israel. 87.6% responded positively to that question. At the same time, 93.2% said that they would not support a ceasefire that involved disarming.

The essential point here is clear.

The people of Gaza want quiet. And those same people also want the ability to transform the quiet and to strike Israel at will.

Analysts are saying that disarming is too great a price to pay for the Gazans. But the real issue here is the issue of power. If the people of Gaza have rockets, they still have power. If they give up their rockets, Gaza loses a tangible and visible sense of power.

Read my latest book THUGS. It's easy. Just click.
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_gw?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=halpern%2C+micah

To reprint my essays contact sales (at) www.featurewell.com
Follow MicahHalpern on Twitter





Powered by Movable Type     Site design by Sekimori