Showing Results 1-20 of 63 for Putin
March 19, 2017
The night of March 16th: Several Israeli jets fly into Syrian airspace. They head in the direction of Palmyra and then apparently rocket another truck convoy of advanced weaponry bound for Hezbollah in southern Lebanon. After destroying their targets, the Israeli aircraft then turn to fly back to Israel. On the way out, the Syrian army launches Russian-supplied SA-5 anti-aircraft missiles at them. They miss their target but one of the missiles flies off in the direction of Israel. Israel's Arrow 3 missile defense then kicks in. Arrow 3 is designed to intercept ballistic missiles in space but it also logs on to the errant Syrian missile headed for Israel. It could conceivably land in an Israeli community and so the decision is taken to intercept it with Arrow 3, which destroys it in mid-air. The boom is reportedly heard in Jerusalem, and parts of the SA-5, one of Russia's most advanced missiles, also land in neighboring Jordan.
March 12, 2017
The state's two top leaders have returned from similar missions - Prime Minister Netanyahu went to Moscow and Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman to Washington to determine how Israel can better 'coordinate' strategic policies with Russia and the U.S. There are several urgent reasons for doing so as a new strategic landscape is fast emerging in the region in the wake of the Iranian nuclear deal and the winding down of the Syrian Civil War; and in fact, there is a link between the two.
December 17, 2016
All systems are go for Israel's Air Force to start operational training on their F-35s, touted to be the top fighter-bomber in the world. Israeli top pilots have long been training on simulators and are eager to get inside the cockpit. Maintenance crews have also been burning the midnight oil studying the myriad of hi-tech that comes with the $100 million price tag (although funded by U.S. military aid). Squadron leader IAF Col. Yotam promises the F-35s will go operational within a year. In addition, the IAF has permission to upgrade the F-35 with secret Israeli improvements - the products of Israeli hi-tech that have proved so effective in the F-15 and F-16. In an unguarded moment, the squadron leader went gung ho saying we'll make changes the designers never dreamed about and they won't believe it a year from now.
While only the first two landed at the Nevatim Air base, more and more will be coming. Fifty are now on order. The IAf has dubbed the F-35 in Hebrew by the name of 'Adir' - the Mighty. Israel is the first foreign country to be supplied with the F-35. The rest of America's allies will keep an eagle eye on how successfully the IAF integrates this aircraft. If things go well they can be expected to also start ordering F-35s from Lockheed-Martin. So economically a lot is riding on its going operational in Israel.
December 03, 2016
In the final days of US President Barack Obama's second term, it is time to sum up his foreign policy. Obama has done his damnedest to keep America out of foreign wars and he succeeded. The question is at what price? Syria will go down as his most deplorable and bloodiest failures. Historians will debate whether Obama's 'leading from behind' approach contributed to the ongoing bloodbath that has dragged on into its sixth year. Aleppo will be remembered as one of the worst international atrocities since World War II. Obama has simply abandoned this hapless city to barbaric Russian and Syrian air strikes, at times with chemical weapons.
October 26, 2016
Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman has offered a major aid package for Gaza, if Hamas suspends its military build-up against the Jewish State. Lieberman sent the surprising message in an interview with the Palestinian newspaper El Kuds. It is not clear at this time if Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu and the Israeli government have approved Lieberman’s proposal. If so it would be a major step, otherwise Lieberman was just blowing hot air.
So to the nuts and bolts of his proposal, in his words:
'Israel will be the first to rebuild the Gaza Strip by investing in a seaport, an airport and two industrial zones at Karni and Erez. But there were several conditions: Hamas must stop digging attack tunnels from Gaza into Israel, launching rockets into Israel and smuggling in weapons'.
For its part, Israel had no intention of occupying Gaza or starting another war. But he warned:
'If war is forced on Israel again, it will be the last war for Hamas, we will totally destroy Hamas!'
The Israeli Defense Minister disclosed that Hamas, rather than improving the lot of the nearly two million Palestinians in Gaza, has spent more than $500 million dollars in a military build-up recently. Lieberman appeared to be offering a big carrot and a big stick to Hamas after the bitter summer war of 2014 that left Gaza in a shambles.
October 16, 2016
Israelis are also scratching their heads over the shenanigans of Donald Trump and how he is still even running for President. It would appear that Trump has passed the point of no return and only some new catastrophic disclosure about Hillary Clinton would bar her from entering the Oval Office. The most intriguing question is why Russian President Putin favors Trump and has mounted a cyber-campaign against Clinton leaking damaging material to American voters. In return, Trump has praised Putin as a 'strong leader'. But on the face of it, would the tough talking Trump not pose a more formidable rival to Putin than Hillary? Would she not follow in the footsteps of Obama by pulling in America's horns and giving Russia a free hand on the world stage?
September 29, 2000
US President Barack Obama delivered an impressive speech at the United Nations General Assembly on Monday. He knows how to talk. Military power alone will not solve the problem in Syria, he said, and presented a vision of peace and comradeship. He asked Iran nicely not to shout "Death to America," because it won’t bring them jobs, and expressed his hope that those who hope for its extinction will maintain the nuclear agreement and turn the world into a safer place. Just like that. There is no doubt that he is a believer.
September 25, 2016
At this week's UN General Assembly session, Israel's Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, poured on the rhetoric but ignored the two key elements at the core of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. They both stuck to two straight lines in the war of words and we all know that straight lines almost never meet, except in outer space. And until the two leaders start talking in the same plane there will be no peace. Leading off the debate, Abbas actually refused to come to terms with the idea of a Jewish state while Bibi glossed over the Israeli occupation of the West Bank (Judea & Samaria).
July 24, 2016
Golan Heights July 17th: 5:00 PM:
An unidentified pilotless drone flies into Israeli air space from Syria. Israeli Air Force controllers launch a Patriot (American made) surface-to-air missile. It misses the target. A second Patriot goes streaking skyward. It also goes wide. An Israeli jet then fires an air-to-air rocket - again no bull's eye. After penetrating Israeli airspace by some four kilometers (over two miles) the drone turns around and then flies back unharmed into Syria. A small part of a Patriot missile falls on the head of an Israeli girl far below. She is not seriously hurt.
July 01, 2016
Israelis must brace up to terror attacks of one kind or another - it is part of the nation's struggle for survival. None are easy, but some hit harder than others.
Thursday morning 8:38 AM in Kiryat Arba in Judea-West Bank:
Thirteen-year-old Hallel Yaffa Ariel is sleeping in her bed alone in her home. The summer vacation has already begun and Hallel, an ardent dancer is sleeping-in after performing the night before in Jerusalem.
A seventeen-year-old Palestinian from the nearby town of Bani Na’im jumps over the Israeli security fence built around the community sounding the alarm at the security headquarters. The terrorist races to the nearest Israeli home and enters. It is still not clear if the door or a window was left open. Armed with a knife, he rushes to the children’s' room, where Hallel is apparently still sleeping, and stabs her eight times.
May 20, 2016
Israel's Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu has just made the biggest mistake of his political career. He has forced the resignation of the popular Defense Minister Moshe 'Bogie' Ya'alon, who has also resigned from the Knesset and threatens to challenge Netanyahu for 'the national leadership' in the future. This is nothing less than one of the biggest political bombshells in Israel's history.
May 06, 2016
As strange as it seems, President Barack Obama and Republican contender Donald Trump actually see eye-to-eye on America's new international role. Both are ‘American Firsters’. After the Bush era that squandered much blood and treasure in the Middle East, the American foreign policy pendulum has swung the other way. Not total isolationism, but in line with public opinion in the US today. It is a more Machiavellian approach or cost-benefit analysis when it comes to America's vital interests.
April 22, 2016
In the Middle East, Russian Air Force pilots are at it again. Recently they startled two US Navy vessels by roaring over their decks in a mock attack, and now they have threatened an Israeli jet, apparently on a peaceful reconnaissance flight over what was the former Syria, trying to spot more Syrian-Iran shipments of sophisticated weapons to Hezbollah in Lebanon. In the American incident, President Obama viewed it as a one-time thing and did not take it too seriously - along the line of 'boys will be boys'. And Obama probably got this right - if Donald Trump were President we'd probably be in the middle of World War III with Russian's new Czar Vladimir!
April 15, 2016
In just one week, two signs of the times in a new, emerging Middle East:
- 1. Russia keeps its word to supply Iran with sophisticated S-300 anti-aircraft missiles, just dandy for shooting down Israeli jets that may try bombing Iranian nuclear weapons sites in the future.
- 2. Egypt transfers two strategic islands to Saudi Arabia to solidify their cooperation after U.S. signals they are on their own. Israel signs on to the emerging pact as a silent partner.
The writing has been on the wall for Saudi Arabia and Egypt. By closing the Iranian nuclear deal with the Ayatollahs, U.S. President Barack Obama has signaled to Riyadh and Cairo that they now occupy a lower place on America's Middle East totem pole. So naturally these two leading Sunni Muslim states are closing ranks to face their bitter Shiite enemy, Iran.
March 18, 2016
'I came, I bombed, now I'm kingmaker of Syria!' Russian President Vladimir Putin is now calling the shots in what is left of the former Syrian state left in ruins after five years of a horrific bloodbath. All the sides, except for the Russians, are now trying to catch their breath in the current cease-fire, while the negotiators have gathered in Geneva seeking some way forward. It was the massive Russian air strikes, which started suddenly five months ago and ended just as surprisingly this week, that have halted the internecine warfare.
March 11, 2016
Iran's radical Revolutionary Guards didn't waste any time. Just days after the 'moderates' were thought to have made gains in the election, the real rulers of Iran launched more ballistic missiles. Those menacing missiles were painted in Hebrew with the words 'Israel must be wiped out!' Clearly this demonstration had the green light from Supreme Leader, Grand Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. The point is that ballistic missiles have one purpose - to deliver a nuclear warhead. In this case, they had a range of 2,000 kilometers (1240 miles), and they can most definitely target Israel. To their credit, the Revolutionary Guards do not want anyone to get the wrong impression that the moderates are on the ascendancy in Tehran.
February 26, 2016
A ceasefire to halt the carnage in a bloody civil war should be a welcome event. But this is not likely in Syria. Two of the most vicious combatants, Daesh and Jabhat al Nusra (an affiliate of al Qaeda) are not even party to it, and Russia has forewarned that it will react with force to any violations by the rebels who seek to oust Syrian President Bashar Assad. And after President Putin sent in his airborne 'cavalry' to save Assad by bombing just about anything that moved, the Syrian tyrant is firmly in place in his presidential palace in Damascus.
January 01, 2016
The U.S. spies on Israel - so what else is new? If U.S. President Obama spied on German Chancellor Merkel and French President Hollande, Prime Minister Netanyahu should be proud to be included in such an august group. Besides, didn't Israel and the U.S. team up to spy on Iran's nuclear program and unleash the Stuxnet virus that derailed it in 2011? With advanced cybernetics and hi-tech, it's only natural that nations, having the capability, will employ it to protect and advance their national interests.
December 25, 2015
Samir Kuntar really had it coming. The rockets that destroyed his hideout in the heart of Damascus executed one of the most disgusting Arab terrorists in Israeli history.
December 18, 2015
Jerusalem and Ankara are reportedly on their way to signing a 'memorandum of understanding’ at secret talks held in Switzerland. If so, it could not have come at a better time. In the midst of the EU's branding of Israeli products from West Bank settlements and the BDS campaign being mounted against the Jewish state, Israel will have scored a major strategic coup with Turkey. However, government sources in Jerusalem caution that 'it's not over until it's over’ and Erdogan is known to be very unpredictable. Just ask Russia's President Putin. But if two of the strongest states in the region are about to bury the hatchet, it is unlikely they will restore their former alliance that was the most powerful in the Middle East.