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Russia Strikes ISIS
By Micah Halpern

Tuesday August 22, 2017

I've Been Thinking:

This will give you a sense of what Russia is doing in Syria.

The Russian ministry of defense announced on Monday that they successfully intercepted an ISIS convoy and destroyed it killing 200 ISIS fighters.

The Russian ministry of defense said that the Russian air force attacked and destroyed a large column of ISIS fighters.

The ISIS fighters were moving from Raqqa to the city of Deir al Zor. They were hoping to secure their move and created a large convoy in the hope of protecting themselves from attack.

But the larger the convoy, the easier it is to hit from the air. And that is exactly what the Russian air force did. In addition to killing the ISIS fighters, Russia emphasized that they also destroyed ISIS' weapons, hardware and equipment.

This was a very impressive strike and is a huge loss for ISIS. Kudos to Russia.

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Israel Prefers Good Terms Won't Critique Trump
By Micah Halpern

Monday August 21, 2017

I've Been Thinking:

There has been critique of Israeli leadership for not criticizing Donald Trump's comments - or lack of comments, about white nationalists.

It should be abundantly clear that this was an obvious decision, not an oversight. Israel came to the conclusion that preserving their relationship with the Trump White House is more important than calling out anti-Semites.

President Trump is not, I believe, an anti-Semite - but he is giving them cover. When Trump failed to criticize white nationalists he empowered them.

Israel should have explained this to Trump. They should have gone public and clearly explained that these people are evil.

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ISIS Celebrates Terror in Barcelona
By Micah Halpern

Sunday August 20, 2017

I've Been Thinking:

ISIS is celebrating the attacks in Spain. The celebration is taking place not just on official ISIS websites, but also by supporters of ISIS in the Western world.

Amaq, the ISIS news agency, has an explanation for the deadly terror attack that has rocked Barcelona. This is what Amaq had to say: "The perpetrators of the Barcelona attack are soldiers of the Islamic State and carried out the operation in response to calls for targeting coalition states."

Twitter lit up after the Barcelona attacks. There was an entire group who supported ISIS and the attacks against innocent Spaniards and tourists. They said that this terror was coming to them for being part of the US coalition and intervening in the Middle East to fight ISIS.

"To all Spanish people, the time has now come to pay for everything that your government has done to innocent people in our countries."

Another twitter writer wrote to Christians around the wolrd: "The worshipers of the Cross no longer feel safe and secure in their homes, individual wolves are still watching and waiting for the right time to cover your heads and shed your blood."

The hashtag #thecrucifixionofthecrusaders collected much of these comments. The hashtag itself means "to kill Christians".

This is dangerous stuff.

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ISIS Attack Hamas in Gaza
By Micah Halpern

Friday August 18, 2017

I've Been Thinking:

Early Thursday morning at Rafah, the crossing between Gaza and Egypt, Hamas security forces went to arrest two suspicious people.

As the two were being arrested they blew themselves up together with the Hamas border police.

ISIS along with their Salafi affiliates in Gaza took responsibility for the attack against Hamas. The announcement said the attack "was done in response to Hamas activity against Salafist jihadists ... which includes the destruction of mosques belonging to the organization, the arrest of its members, and their persecution."

The terrorists were probably wearing explosive suicide vests.

It should be noted that both ISIS and Hamas are terror groups. They are both on the same side in Syria both, trying to oust Assad. But in Gaza - in Gaza, Hamas and ISIS are arch enemies.

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Hamas Warns Israel
By Micah Halpern

Thursday August 17, 2017

I've Been Thinking:

Yahya Sinwar has been the leader of Hamas for the past 6 months. He has not been a very public - until yesterday when he held a press briefing.

Sinwar warned Israel not to escalate tensions or attack Gaza. He asserted that Hamas is much more powerful than they were during the last conflict with Israel.

Sinwar said: "Hamas is not seeking a confrontation, but if such a confrontation should arise, Hamas will pummel Israel."

Sinwar warned Israel against "taking stupid steps against the Gaza Strip" and claimed that "the Palestinian resistance has the ability to respond to that."

There is no doubt that tensions wax and wane between Israel and Hamas.

Tensions will certainly rise to a level that will require a response - and that response may very well lead to an all out conflict, something approaching war war.

Hamas is saying that, should it come to another conflict, they will respond and, in the end, Israel will be hurt.

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Abbas Sends Blessing to Kim Jon Un
By Micah Halpern

Wednesday August 16, 2017

I've Been Thinking:

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas did it again ... only this time with North Korea.

Abbas sent Kim Jong Un a telegram wishing him and the North Korean people congratulations on the celebration of Liberation Day, the day that celebrates their liberation from Japan.

Abbas thanked Kim Jong for his support of the Palestinian people and for North Korea's investment and trade as well as for their close friendship.

WAFA, the official Palestinian media, published a copy of the telegram.

Abbas wrote that Kim Jong Un "sacrificed the most precious sacrifices for its freedom and honor."

He wrote that he hopes that the "historical friendly relations between Palestine and North Korea and their two peoples will continue to develop and grow" and then he wished Kim "all health and happiness."

What is Abbas thinking? How many other countries wished North Korean well on this day? Reaching out to Kim Jong Un is a destructive move that will only further alienate Abbas and Palestinians from the West.

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