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Israel’s Shin Bet: Iran Funding Hamas-Led Riots at Gaza Border

Iran is funding Hamas' ongoing efforts to promote violence against Israel disguised as mass demonstrations at the Gaza Strip border, Israel's internal security service said on Monday. Shin Bet released a statement explaining that Hamas, the Palestinian, U.S.-designated terrorist group in control of Gaza, has told its own members to stay away from the border fence during the violent protests while encouraging civilians to advance toward the barrier, the Times of Israel reported. But if the fence is breached, then Hamas is ready to penetrate Israel to attack Israelis. "There is a prohibition for Hamas operatives to approach the border, from a fear that they will be killed or captured by IDF [Israel Defense Forces] troops, unless the security fence falls and then they must enter, armed, into Israel under the cover of the masses and carry out terror attacks," the agency said, noting its findings are from a number of interrogations. Shin Bet added that Iran is bankrolling the Hamas-led campaign to breach Israel's border fence. "From the information we have, it appears Hamas is encouraging and sending protesters to the border fence in order to carry out violent acts and damage security infrastructure," the agency statement said. "In addition, it was found that Iran is providing funding to Hamas in order for it to carry out these violent activities along the Gaza Strip's border fence." Iran and Hamas renewed their close ties last year, after years of tension over the latter's refusal to support Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in Syria's ongoing conflict. Tehran provides significant support to Gaza's governing body and backs its efforts to attack Israel. The Shin Bet statement came out amid violent protests and riots in Gaza. Over the past seven weeks, thousands of Palestinians have gathered at the Gaza border in what organizers have called the "March of Return." During the demonstrations, some Palestinians, including Hamas operatives, have attacked Israel and Israeli soldiers with explosives, rocks, and other weapons. There have been several attempts to breach Israel's border fence. The riots most recently broke out at the Gaza border on Monday, when the U.S. embassy in Israel officially moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The demonstrations are expected to continue into Tuesday, Nakba Day (translated as "catastrophe"), when Palestinians mark the creation of the state of Israel. The post Israel’s Shin Bet: Iran Funding Hamas-Led Riots at Gaza Border appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

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MSNBC Guest: Moving Embassy to Jerusalem Is About ‘Pleasing the People Who Finance the GOP’

The Trump administration's decision to move the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem was about "pleasing the people who finance the GOP," an MSNBC guest said on Monday. President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital in a historic gesture last December, and the U.S. Embassy in Israel officially opened in Jerusalem on Monday on the 70th anniversary of Israel's independence. The decision has led to mass protests and violence in the Gaza Strip, and journalist Bobby Ghosh said on MSNBC that the move was not part of any peace process. Any invocation of the word "peace" by Trump, he said, made many Arabs wince. "To be cloaking this event as if this was some sort of a gesture of peace, and that this was the beginning of some kind of peace as the president was implying, it's unnecessary," Ghosh said. "No one's going to believe it for a moment. This is nothing to do with peace. This is to do with the president fulfilling an election promise and appeasing his base and pleasing the people who finance the GOP." Referring to the protests, Ghosh said Palestinians were "not going to go quietly, as we've seen." Ghosh made the remark to MSNBC host Stephanie Ruhle, who had earlier commented on the presence at the embassy opening of Sheldon Adelson, a Jewish billionaire and GOP mega-donor. Last week, Ruhle said Trump left the Iran nuclear deal "maybe to please Sheldon Adelson." The post MSNBC Guest: Moving Embassy to Jerusalem Is About ‘Pleasing the People Who Finance the GOP’ appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

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Bernie Sanders’ Son Slams Democratic Party, Hillary Clinton

The son of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.), who is currently pursing his own quest for political office, has showcased some of the trademark criticism for the Democratic Party associated with his father's failed 2016 presidential bid. Levi Sanders didn't hold back in dissecting the reasons why the Democratic Party came up short in 2016 while discussing his own candidacy with the Independent. The younger Sanders, the Democratic socialist senator's only biological son and a candidate for Congress in New Hampshire, blasted the Democratic Party for failing to make inroads with working-class voters, claiming the party has done a "poor job" of boosting morale. "The Democratic Party has done a very poor job of bolstering people’s confidence and self-esteem, and that has significant consequences when it comes to reaching out to low-income and working-class people," Sanders said. The candidate also offered a strong rebuke of the party's 2016 presidential nominee, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Sanders said Clinton's "deplorable" comments– where she claimed that half of Trump's supporters were part of a "basket of deplorables" that are sexist, homophobic, and xenophobic–were not constructive in appealing to working-class voters. "When Hillary Clinton used the word ‘deplorable,’ that had a significant effect on so many people," Sanders said. "They basically said ‘We understand that Donald Trump is not a nice guy, but he is one of us. Yes, I know I’m a billionaire, but I’m like your weird uncle. I’m not politically correct and I’m not judging you and that’s the key.'" His comments echo ones made by the elder Sanders in April of 2017, in which the senator stated it was wrong to describe Trump voters as "deplorable folks." Sanders addressed his famous lineage directly but stated it wasn't "the real issue" behind his candidacy. "It’s not about the fact that I am Bernie Sanders’ son – sure, obviously, that is more interesting – but the real issue is every day I get to see the economic pain that people are under," Sanders stated. Sanders pointed to his work as a legal services analyst in neighboring Massachusetts as having opened his eyes to the plight of those "beaten up by the system." "The thing which has inspired me was working in legal services for almost 18 years and being a union member for 23 years," Sanders said. "The work I do means every day I see people getting beaten up by the system." The younger Sanders announced in February that he would run as a Democrat in New Hampshire's 1st Congressional District. Sanders, who doesn't live in the district, is running on a platform similar to that of his father, emphasizing universal health care, free college tuition, and a higher minimum wage. The seat became vacant when incumbent Democrat Rep. Carol Shea-Porter opted to retire instead of seeking re-election this fall. The district, which is marginally Republican on paper, has changed hands repeatedly in recent years and is one of the nation's closest swing districts. Since announcing his candidacy, Sanders has lagged in fundraising behind candidates with lower name recognition. His campaign reported raising $12,000 in the first quarter of 2018 compared to the $480,000, $205,000, and $135,000 raised by three other Democratic candidates. The post Bernie Sanders’ Son Slams Democratic Party, Hillary Clinton appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

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Netanyah at Dedication of U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem: Thank you Trump for ‘Having the Courage to Keep Your Promises’

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke at the dedication of the American embassy in Jerusalem on Monday where he praised the United States' decision to make the move from Tel Aviv. Netanyahu was introduced by American Ambassador David Friedman, who was praised by Netanyahu and congratulated for being the first U.S. ambassador to the embassy in Jerusalem. "Today, the embassy of the most powerful nation on Earth, our greatest ally, the United States of America, today, it's embassy opened here!" Netanyahu said to loud cheering. Monday also marked the 70 year anniversary of the Israeli Declaration of Independence. Netanyahu mentioned how then-President Harry S. Truman recognized Israel as an independent country, becoming the first world leader to do so. He went on to reflect on President Donald Trump's historic announcement last year. "Last December, President Trump became the first world leader to recognize Jerusalem as our capital and today the United States of America is opening its embassy right here in Jerusalem," Netanyahu said. "Thank you, President Trump, for having the courage to keep your promises!" Trump caused waves in December when he recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital and announced his administration's intention to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, where the United States previously only had a consulate. Netanyahu also called Monday a great day for peace, saying "the truth and peace are interconnected." The post Netanyah at Dedication of U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem: Thank you Trump for ‘Having the Courage to Keep Your Promises’ appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

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The WikiLeaks-ization of the American Media

Scott Shane had an interesting piece over the weekend in the New York Times on a topic I wrote about last year: What should journalists do when they receive “authentic and newsworthy” information from a foreign intelligence service? The question has become salient again because of Amy Chozick’s worry that …

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ABC Analyst Wrongly Calls Iran Nuclear Deal a ‘Treaty,’ Says U.S. Is ‘In Violation’

ABC News political analyst Matthew Dowd wrongly referred to the Iran nuclear deal as a "treaty" Sunday while bemoaning President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from the agreement and reimpose sanctions on Tehran. Dowd, who calls himself a "proud independent," agreed with reporter Cecilia Vega's fretting on "This Week" about internal divisions within the Trump administration over getting out of the Obama-era accord. "It does show. Who would have guessed that the first one to violate that treaty would be us and not Iran?" Dowd said. "I mean, we're the first one in violation of this treaty." The Iran deal is not a treaty. President Barack Obama made an executive agreement in the case of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and ignored calls for the Senate to ratify the agreement as a treaty. Obama didn't have the votes in Congress to get this accomplished, thus making it easier for Trump to withdraw the U.S. from the deal. No one corrected Dowd in the moment. Dowd also said the language from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton reminded him of the 2003 run-up to the Iraq War. "We've been to this rodeo before. It cost us thousands of lives and trillions of dollars, and it feels like we're going to the same place again," he said. As ABC News' chief political analyst, Dowd has said Trump supporters have done more damage to the U.S. than the Islamic State terrorist group, defended the credibility of Michael Wolff's Fire and Fury book on the White House, and said Republicans "empowered" Bill Clinton's sexual misconduct by putting Clarence Thomas on the Supreme Court. The post ABC Analyst Wrongly Calls Iran Nuclear Deal a ‘Treaty,’ Says U.S. Is ‘In Violation’ appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

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Schumer Praises Trump for Moving Embassy to Jerusalem: ‘Long Overdue Move’

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) praised President Donald Trump Monday upon the opening of the American embassy in Jerusalem, calling it a "long overdue move." Trump fulfilled a long-made promise by politicians of both parties, recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capital and moving the U.S. embassy there from Tel Avi of the Jewish state's founding. It opened Monday at a festive ceremony attended by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, White House advisers Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, Republican Senators Ted Cruz (Texas), Dean Heller (Nev.), Mike Lee (Utah) and Lindsey Graham (S.C.), and officials from around the world. While no Democrats attended the opening, Schumer applauded the occasion. "In a long overdue move, we have moved our embassy to Jerusalem," Schumer said in a statement. "Every nation should have the right to choose its capital. I sponsored legislation to do this two decades ago, and I applaud President Trump for doing it." .@SenSchumer: "In a long overdue move, we have moved our embassy to Jerusalem. Every nation should have the right to choose its capital. I sponsored legislation to do this two decades ago, and I applaud President Trump for doing it" — Jonathan Martin (@jmartNYT) May 14, 2018 The Jerusalem Embassy Act passed easily in the U.S. Congress in 1995 and called for the U.S. to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital and move the embassy there. However, the law included a provision allowing the president to issue a waiver to delay the embassy move six months at a time, and Presidents Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama did on every occasion, citing security concerns. Trump issued the waiver in June but finally recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital in December, calling it a "recognition of reality." He spoke to the audience in Jerusalem Monday in a pre-recorded video, congratulating Israel and extending friendship to Israel and the Palestinians. The decision has not been without controversy. Violent protests erupted again on the Gaza Strip in response to the embassy opening, leading to the reported deaths of at least 41 Palestinians. UPDATED 11:07 A.M.: One Israeli news outlet has reported that Democratic Rep. Ted Deutch (Fla.) was part of the American delegation attending the dedication ceremony. This story will be updated further if Deutch's attendance is confirmed. The post Schumer Praises Trump for Moving Embassy to Jerusalem: ‘Long Overdue Move’ appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

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Trump Addresses Audience at Embassy Dedication in Jerusalem

President Donald Trump on Monday addressed an audience in Jerusalem, Israel by a pre-taped video to mark the opening of the U.S. embassy in the city. "United States under President Harry Truman became the first nation to recognize the state of Israel. Today we officially opened the United States embassy in Jerusalem. Congratulations," Trump said. "It's been a long time coming." Back in December of 2017, Trump announced the U.S. recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital and would initiate plans to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. "Almost immediately after declaring statehood in 1948, Israel designated the city of Jerusalem as its capital–the capital the Jewish people established in ancient times," Trump said. "Today, Jerusalem is the seat of Israel's government. It is the home of the Israeli legislature and the Israeli supreme court and Israel's prime minister and president." Trump added that Israel is a sovereign nation and has the right to designate its own capital. "Israel is a sovereign nation with the right like every other sovereign nation to determine its own capital," Trump said. The ceremony has intensified riots along the Israel-Gaza border, where Palestinians have been protesting for several weeks. There have been reports of casualties and injuries at the protests. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has said such a move threatens the peace process, and other Middle Eastern leaders have warned the move could inflame tensions in the region. Trump said the U.S. is still committed to a lasting peace deal for the region. "The United States remains fully committed to facilitating a lasting peace agreement, and we continue to support the status quo at Jerusalem's holy sites including at the Temple Mount," Trump said. Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan led the American delegation of about 250 people, which also included Trump's envoy to the Middle East Jason Greenblatt, American Ambassador David Friedman, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, and White House advisers Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump. Several Republicans from both the House of Representatives and the Senate were also part of the delegation. The post Trump Addresses Audience at Embassy Dedication in Jerusalem appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

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