Remarks by Ambassador Samantha Power at a Press Conference on the September Program of Work for the UN Security Council

09/03/2014 08:07 PM EDT

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Samantha Power

Samantha Power, photo by United States State Department

AMBASSADOR POWER: Hello, everybody. Okay, sorry to keep you waiting. Forgive, and thank you again for coming.

QUESTION: Thank you very much. Edith Lederer from the Associated Press. Madam Ambassador, we understand that negotiations are going on right now on a resolution on the Israeli-Palestinian ceasefire to try and ensure that it becomes permanent with some kind of monitoring, verification, and some other measures. Could you tell us whether the United States supports this and whether you expect Council action on this in the coming weeks before the GA starts?

AMBASSADOR POWER: Thank you, Edie. I’d say a few things. First, there is now a ceasefire in place that has held in recent days, and our first point of reference here would be to make sure that nothing we do be unhelpful as it relates to current talks between the Israelis and the Palestinians, which are meant to resume, as you know, in Cairo. So that’s a do-no-harm proposition that I think we should always keep in mind here in New York.

The second point I’d make though is that, yes, we have been engaging – we, the United States; I’m speaking in my national capacity – we’ve been engaged for some time within the Council on a number of ideas about how the Council might potentially contribute to the effort to secure a sustainable ceasefire. Those discussions are continuing, and the United States is of the view that a Council product could conceivably play a positive role in supporting a durable solution. And as you indicated, those discussions are underway. But again, our emphasis is going to be on what the Council can do that will be additive and seen as additive by the parties on the ground, given that there is a calm of sorts that we very much seek to preserve.

MODERATOR: In the back. Lou from Reuters.Continue Reading …

Letter: Parents of Israeli Child Daniel Tregerman to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon

Text of a letter sent by Gila and Doron Tregerman, parents of 4 year-old Daniel, who was murdered during a mortar attack on his home, to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.

By Israel News Agency Staff

For UN Secretary-General, Mr. Ban Ki-moon

Dear Sir,

My name is Gila, I am an Israeli citizen, and I am a resident of Kibbutz Nahal Oz, near the border with Gaza.A week ago, we lost our eldest son, Daniel 4.5 years old, when he was killed by a mortar shell fired from Gaza into Israel.I address you after your announcement to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, to establish an international investigation Committee to investigate “Israel’s crime” in the recent fighting in Gaza.

About us: Doron and I were married five years ago and we have three amazing kids: Daniel 4.5 yrs, Yoval 3.5 yrs and Uri 4 months old. We were a happy family. We lived in Kibbutz Nahal Oz near Gaza, and found ourselves constantly debating whether not to abandon Nahal Oz and move to another location, quieter, safer, far from rocket fire from Gaza, and far away from the alarms.

Then came the threat of terrorist tunnels, which Hamas members dug from Gaza to Israel under our home to hurt us. At night we heard noises and voices digging beneath us. Thus, in the last six months our children slept with the window closed and locked. We were afraid that they will be kidnapped from us.

Can you imagine our life, Mr. Secretary-General? How do you live in constant fear of mortar shell and terrorists emerging from tunnels?

US State Dept: August 19 Cease Fire Rockets Came From Gaza

US State Department confirms that the rocket fire that broke the cease fire on August 19, 2014 came from Gaza.  At the press briefing on 8/19/2014 the State Department Spokesperson stated: 
    
“[I]t is our understanding that an extension[of the cease fire] was agreed to, but that since has been broken. We are very concerned about today’s developments, condemn the renewed rocket fire, and as we have said, Israel has a right to defend itself against such attacks. We call for an immediate end to rocket fire and hostilities and a return to cease-fire talks. It [the rocket fire] came from Gaza. And the – and Hamas has security responsibility for Gaza. So it did come from Gaza.”

AJIRI #50: The UN’s latest Anti-Israel Project: The War Crimes Charge

After ignoring the continuing Hamas attacks against Israel for years, the UN Human Rights Council convened 15 days after the start of the most recent military activities between Israel and Gaza. It spent a few hours listening to speeches attacking Israel and, without further investigation, adopted a pre-cooked resolution that found Israel guilty of a series of war crimes. The Council then arranged for the creation of a commission that was assigned the task of collecting the evidence that would retroactively prove that the Council was right in issuing its guilty verdict against Israel. The Council also called upon the Commission to come up with the names of Israeli officials against whom war crimes charges are to be brought.

Lessons of the War in Gaza

by Daniel Pipes
National Review Online
August 9, 2014

As Israeli operations against Hamas wind down, here are seven insights into the month-long conflict:

Missile shield: The superb performance of Iron Dome, the protective system that shot down nearly every Hamas rocket threatening life or property, has major military implications for Israel and the world. Its success signals that “Star Wars” (as opponents maliciously dubbed it upon introduction in 1983) can indeed provide protection from short-range and also presumably from long-range rockets and missiles, potentially changing the future of warfare.

Tunnels: Tunneling behind enemy lines is hardly a new tactic; historically, it has had success, such as the 1917 Battle of Messines, when British mines killed 10,000 German soldiers. The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) knew of Hamas’ tunnels before hostilities began on July 8 but failed to appreciate their numbers, length, depth, quality of construction, and electronic sophistication. Jerusalem quickly realized, as the Times of Israel wrote, that “Israel’s air, sea and land supremacy is not mirrored underground.” The IDF thus requires additional time to achieve subterranean dominance.