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November 20, 2012

Militant Organizations Weigh In On Operation Pillar Of Defense

Hassan Nasrallah speaks about Operation Pillar of Defense

In response to Israel’s military operation against key Hamas and Islamic Jihad targets in Gaza, Hezbollah, Al Shabaab and the Taliban have issued statements condemning Israel and Jews for the renewed violence.

Al Shabaab, Al Qaeda’s branch in Somalia, has condemned “in the strongest possible terms, the savage Jewish assault on the innocent Muslim population of Gaza.” Al Shabaab issued a statement on Twitter calling “on all Muslims, particularly those living near Gaza, to answer the call of the oppressed & come to the aid of their brothers.”

Although Al Shabaab is geographically removed from the conflict, it has previously declared an “open battle” against Jewish interests in Africa and against Israel, which it has described as the “oppressing Zionist entity.” In November 2009, it announced the establishment of Al Quds Brigade, a military unit specifically tasked with attacking Israel and freeing “Islamic holy places” from the Israelis.

Al Shabaab appears to be the only affiliate of Al Qaeda to have issued a public statement on the conflict so far. Since messages from the senior Al Qaeda leadership routinely take time to reach the public, official statements are likely to be made in the coming weeks.

Hezbollah, the Lebanese Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO), has also condemned Israeli actions and expressed its support for the Palestinian militant factions via its satellite television station, Al-Manar. While Hezbollah has not yet entered the fray, Lebanese security forces report that they dismantled two rockets aimed at Israel from southern Lebanon on Monday.

Hassan Nasrallah, Hezbollah’s leader, encouraged Arabs to “open borders to Gaza and deliver more missiles to the resistance,” adding that “Arab countries are required to support and arm Gaza and not to work as intermediaries between the Israeli enemy and Gaza.” Nasrallah also said “the Zionists returned to their criminal nature with killing large numbers of children, women and civilians.”

Hezbollah’s Al Manar also reported on statements made by Ziad al-Nakhala, the Deputy Secretary General of PIJ, that “the weapons which the resistance uses to fight, including those of Hamas, are Iranian weapons, from the first bullet to the missile; even the locally manufactured ones are Iranian.”

The Taliban in Afghanistan issued a statement condemning “the brutal attacks on the land of Palestine.” The message calls on “the Islamic peoples and especially the leaders of the Islamic world… to take a stand… to put an end to the Israeli injustices.” The statement also highlights American support for Israel, which it claims demonstrates “support for international terrorism.”

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August 16, 2012

Hezbollah Re-Launches Apps; Blames ADL For Failure Of Previous Effort

Hezbollah’s smartphone application, launched at the end of July but promptly removed by Apple and Google, has been rereleased for the Android operating system and is “back on Ipad and Iphone,” according to Al-Manar, the Lebanese terrorist organization’s satel­lite tele­vi­sion sta­tion.

Al-Manar’s English statement

In a statement issued today, Al-Manar says it is “back on Ipad and Iphone applications via alternative ways, following the campaign carried out by the Jewish Anti-Defamation League to deactivate Al-Manar applications on smart phones at Google Play and apple store.”

Al-Manar announced its new release for Android this past weekend and similarly blamed “the Jewish Anti-Defamation League” for launching a “campaign” to remove the original application from iTunes and Google Play. “Al Manar is back again. As we promised our audience, we found alternative ways to make our application available to be downloaded on Android phones,” the statement reads.

Following the removal of the initial application by Apple and Google last month, Al-Manar issued a statement describing ADL as “US based Jewish organization” that “monitors Israel related media especially in Arab and Muslim countries” and sends publications “to American politicians and Congress members.”

In an interview with Al Intiqad, a Lebanese news site, Mohamed Salah, director of Al-Manar’s website, said that Al-Manar “will spare no effort to respond strongly to this targeting.”

In an effort to avoid distributor policies and control, the new applications are downloadable directly from Al-Manar’s website, which is hosted British server. The website also provides instructions, along with screen shots, on configuring Android phones to accept applications “not sourced in Android Market.”

The appli­ca­tion directs users to var­i­ous sta­tion con­tent, includ­ing speeches by Hezbol­lah leader, Has­san Nas­ral­lah. Al-Manar broad­casts the ter­ror­ist group’s mes­sages of hate and vio­lence, dis­sem­i­nates anti-Semitic and anti-American pro­pa­ganda and glo­ri­fies sui­cide bomb­ings to mil­lions of view­ers 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Hezbol­lah is a U.S. des­ig­nated For­eign Ter­ror­ist Orga­ni­za­tion, and Al-Manar was listed as a “Spe­cially Des­ig­nated Global Ter­ror­ist” by the Depart­ment of the Trea­sury in 2006.

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August 1, 2012

Anti-Semitism Pervasive in Ramadan Television Programs

During Ramadan, the Muslim holy month observed by fasting and prayer, many satellite channels in the Arab world broadcast special programs for the occasion that are rife with anti-Semitism and harsh anti-Israel expressions. These series are generally very popular and receive broader viewership than programs aired throughout the rest of the year.

Here are some examples taken from the more popular shows that have aired since the start of Ramadan this year:

Firqat Naji Attalah

The bank robbers disguise themselves by dressing as Hasidic Jews.

This nightly series is widely aired throughout the Middle East and depicts Israelis in classic anti-Semitic fashion. A Middle East broadcast network, MBC, promoted the show saying it will “surprise the audience with the sweetest jokes about the ‘cheap Jew.’”

The show revolves around the character of Naji Attalah, a diplomat working in the Egyptian embassy in Tel Aviv who decides to take revenge on Israel by robbing an Israeli bank. A scene in the first episode portrayed an Israeli bank manager speaking Arabic with an Iraqi-Jewish accent. He offers Naji Attalah a cup of coffee that contains little coffee and no sugar. He then attempts to cheat Attalah while counting his money, an attempt to portray an image of the frugal and cheating Jew.

The staff at the Egyptian embassy is portrayed as unhappy about dealing with Jews. While they recognize that they are required to deal with Israelis as part of their job, they are portrayed as being hateful towards them.  In one scene, a driver for the Egyptian embassy exclaims, “When Hamas or Hezbollah launch a missile on them [Israelis], one’s heart jumps out of joy.”

The main character is played by famous Egyptian actor Adil Imam, whose performance has been hailed as an amusing mockery of Jews’ alleged frugality.

Ashab il-Sabt

This bi-weekly show is aired by Ar-Rahma, a Salafist channel based in Egypt that features an anti-Semitic professor at Tanta University in Egypt. The professor, Dr. Mohammed Jalal Idris, allegedly a specialist in Hebrew literature, uses the show as a podium to propagate the conspiracy theories espoused in the “Protocols of the Elders of Zion” and other hateful theories about Judaism.

The program features live call-ins from viewers who ask Idris about Jews and Judaism. In one instance Idris was asked if he knows of a Jewish plan to control the Muslim holy city of Madina. He responded that Israel has submitted a request to Saudi Arabia for compensations worth millions of dollars on behalf of the Jews who lived in Madina 1400 years ago. Idris then added, “Egypt should request compensations from Israel for the gold the Jews stole from Egypt,” referring to the Exodus story in the Bible.

Il Hukm Ba’d il Muzawla

This Candid Camera-style show, which airs on the Egypt-based An-Nahar TV, provokes irrational and blatantly anti-Semitic reactions from its guests. In one episode, for example, a popular Egyptian public figure was informed that he was being interviewed by a French channel. The interviewer pretended that she was an undercover Israeli, gradually slipping into an Israeli accent and asking political questions related to Israel. The interviewee became convinced that he had been set up and attacked the producer, shouting “son of a dirty Jewish mother.” Other guests also have brutally beaten the staff when led to believe they were Jews.

Al-Ghalibun

The Hezbollah TV channel, al Manar, is broadcasting a new season of last year’s successful series – “The Victorious.” The series tells the story of the Israeli invasion of South Lebanon and the suffering of the Lebanese people. The narrative is extremely anti-Israel and regularly portrays Israeli commanders as conspiring against the Lebanese leadership and people. In one of the scenes, an Israeli commander says to his colleague: “This is the happiest day – as we ‘finished’ with our enemies in Sabra and Shatila.”

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