Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy called for residents of his state to observe a moment of silence at 9:30 a.m. on Friday, a week after the shootings, and his fellow governors from Maine to Kansas followed suit.
The rampage, in which 28 people died, including 20 children and the gunman, has sparked new discussion on tightening gun laws, a thorny political issue in the United States, which has a strong culture of individual gun ownership.Biden brought together cabinet members, police officials and others in a 90-minute first meeting of the new White House task force charged by President Barack Obama with drawing up a plan to tackle gun violence in the United States."We have to have a comprehensive way in which to respond to the mass murder of our children that we saw in Connecticut," Biden told the group, which included Attorney General Eric Holder, Thomas Nee, president of the National Association of Police Organizations, and other officials."The president is absolutely committed to keeping the promise that he will act," said Biden, who as a senator authored a crime bill in 1994 that included a temporary ban on assault weapons.
WAITING ON THE NRA
The National Rifle Association, the powerful firearms lobby that has long resisted any effort to restrict gun ownership, said this week that it would offer "meaningful contributions" to prevent future such massacres at an event in Washington on Friday.The group, which kept silent for five days after the shooting, plans to continue its media push over the weekend with its chief executive, Wayne LaPierre, due to appear on NBC television's talk show "Meet the Press" on Sunday.Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, formerly Obama's chief of staff, worried publicly that the NRA would not break its past patterns."I expect the Washington gun lobby and the gun lobbies around to do exactly what they always do, which is to try to apply political pressure so you ignore the overwhelming public opinion," Emanuel said at Chicago City Hall, where he called for a ban on assault weapons of the kind used in Newtown.In Newtown, a few dozen residents met at the town library on Wednesday night to discuss ways they could influence the national debate. U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal told the group it was time for a "seismic change" in gun policies."This horrific tragedy has changed America, in the way that it is ready to stop the spread of gun violence," he said.The shooter, Adam Lanza, used guns that were legally purchased and registered to his mother Nancy, his first victim in Friday's attack.
A memorial service for Nancy Lanza was held on Thursday, the Los Angeles Times reported, citing an official source in New Hampshire. It probably took place near Kingston, where Lanza grew up, the paper said."The family of Nancy Lanza share the grief of a community and the nation as we struggle to comprehend the tremendous loss that we all share," said a statement from Lanza's family, the Times reported.
ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN?
Democrats in Congress who favor gun control have called for quick votes on measures to ban assault weapons or high-capacity magazines, hoping that the slaying of the 6- and 7-year olds in Newtown might be a tipping point to win over more lawmakers.The backlash against guns has not been limited to lawmakers. Retailers including Wal-Mart Stores Inc took down a website about Bushmaster rifles, the sort used in the attack. Dick's Sporting Goods pulled all guns from its store closest to the massacre in Newtown, about 80 miles northeast of New York City.Newtown schools, with the exception of Sandy Hook Elementary, the site of the shooting, re-opened to students on Tuesday. On Thursday, school officials said Friday, the last day before the Christmas break, would be a shortened day.Reflecting a heightened state of alert at schools across the United States, a school district near Boise, Idaho, canceled planned assemblies at a number of its 50 schools after receiving a rash of threats that suggested "something bad" would happen on Friday, Meridian school district spokesman Eric Exline said.Exline said the school system was working with police to respond to trouble, if needed. "The event last Friday in Connecticut has unnerved people in a lot of ways," he said.Authorities in Phoenix said a 16-year-old girl was arrested on Thursday after making online threats to kill herself and other students at a suburban high school.Sergeant Brandon Jones, a Maricopa County Sheriff's Office spokesman, said the girl, a student at Red Mountain High School, admitted to making the threat on a YouTube channel. It was not clear whether the teen had the means to act on the threat.
Authorities said part of the post read: "I now literally have a plan of seriously hurting ... killing ... murdering people in my high school. And a playlist to do it."(Additional reporting by Eric Thayer in Newtown, James B. Kelleher in Chicago, David Schwartz in Phoenix, Laura Zuckerman in Salmon, Idaho, and David Ingram and Roberta Rampton in Washington; Writing by Scott Malone and Jim Loney; Editing by Mohammad Zargham, Vicki Allen and Jackie Frank)
AP Exclusive: Palestinians aim to isolate IsraelBy | Associated Press – 3 hrs ago DEC21,12
The Palestinians have demanded that Israel halt settlement construction before negotiations can resume, saying the continued building is a show of bad faith. Netanyahu says talks should resume without preconditions, and notes that a 10-month partial freeze on construction he imposed two years ago failed to bring about substantive negotiations.Frustrated with the impasse, the Palestinians turned to the United Nations for recognition of an independent state in the West Bank, east Jerusalem and Gaza. Israel, which withdrew from Gaza in 2005, rejects a return to its 1967 lines.Although the U.N. vote did not change the situation on the ground, it had deep implications. Opposed by just nine countries, it amounted to a strong international endorsement of the Palestinian position on future borders. It also cleared the way for them to join international agencies to press their grievances against Israel.Netanyahu has accused the Palestinians of bypassing direct negotiations."One would hope we will in fact see in 2013 the re-emergence of the Israeli-Palestinian negotiating process," said Netanyahu's spokesman, Mark Regev. "There is no substitute for direct talks. You're not going to make peace in resolutions at the United Nations or other international forums."
At the heart of the deadlock are the huge gaps between the two sides' conditions. Netanyahu has embraced the idea of establishing a Palestinian state alongside Israel. Without action soon, the thinking goes, Israel will find itself in permanent control of millions of disenfranchised Palestinians, threatening its status as a democracy with a Jewish majority. But Netanyahu has added so many caveats, including a refusal to turn Jerusalem into a shared capital and demands to retain significant parts of the West Bank, that the Palestinians believe negotiations would be futile.Palestinian officials say they are hopeful that a formula for restarting talks can be found after Israel's election on Jan. 22, perhaps through a new initiative from President Barack Obama.The Palestinians have begun to speak of a trial, six-month negotiating period. Azzam al-Ahmed, a top aide to Abbas, said Arab diplomats will present the plan in Western capitals, Russia and China next month. But with the Palestinians insistent on a settlement freeze, and opinion polls forecasting a new hardline Israeli coalition headed by Netanyahu, expectations are low.The Palestinian officials said they will not rush toward any punitive measure, but they are determined not to stand pat."We have to prepare ourselves for a long and tough battle," added Yasser Abed Rabbo, secretary-general of the Palestine Liberation Organization, the Palestinians' top decision making body. "We will use all the political tools available."
Among the options being considered is halting cooperation between Israeli and Palestinian security forces in the West Bank. The cooperation is widely seen as a key element in preserving the calm in the West Bank in recent years, in sharp contrast to the heavy fighting a decade ago."There will be no security cooperation as long as there is no political horizon," said Mohammed Ishtayeh, a Palestinian Cabinet minister.The Palestinians also talk of increasing "popular struggle," the term they use for demonstrations against Israeli soldiers. Such face-to-face confrontations frequently turn tense, with protesters throwing stones and troops firing tear gas and water cannons, and run the risk of growing more violent.Perhaps most troubling to Israel, the Palestinians also want to use their upgraded status on the world stage to push for international action against Israel.Officials say they will move to join the International Criminal Court, where they hope to pursue war crimes charges against Israel for its settlement activities. Although the road to taking legal action in the ICC appears to be long and complicated, it nonetheless has made Israeli officials jittery."We are going to pursue this policy to reach a point of having the international community impose sanctions on Israel," said Qais Abdelkareem, another PLO official.This Palestinian agenda, while ambitious, is likely to encounter stiff resistance from both Israel and its international allies. Israel has a number of tools at its disposal, including possible military or economic pressure on the Palestinians. Israel's allies in the West, particularly the U.S., will also likely shield it from any attempt to impose broad international sanctions, at least in the near term.
But there are signs that international patience with Israel is wearing thin. There was strikingly sharp anger over the Israeli plan to build thousands of new settler homes in response to the Palestinian bid at the U.N.
The U.S., using especially harsh language, accused Israel of engaging in a "pattern of provocative action." All the members of the U.N. Security Council except the U.S. denounced the Israeli settlement plans at a special meeting this week.The European Union has also condemned the planned construction. The 27-member bloc issued a statement earlier this month raising the possibility of requiring Israel to label any exports that originate in the settlements. It also noted that future cooperation agreements would not include territories captured in 1967, including east Jerusalem, which Israel claims as an integral part of its capital. There are fears that individual European states might impose sanctions of their own.An Israeli official said the extent of the international uproar had caught officials off guard. "Something has changed," he said. "Clearly a line has been crossed." He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was discussing closed diplomatic meetings.
Yossi Beilin, a former deputy foreign minister and peace negotiator, said there is "no way" the status quo can continue and that Netanyahu "understands that this situation where the U.S. is the only one to support Israel cannot go on forever." He said Netanyahu, after pandering to hard-liners during the election campaign, will likely try to bring in a centrist party into his coalition after the vote to give the government an image of moderation."Reality might impose itself in such a way that we will find him doing things, like maybe an interim agreement with the Palestinians or something that seems now unexpected," Beilin said. "He will make small steps to appease adversaries. And to Netanyahu, the whole world is an adversary."
Lost Jewish tombstones found in Greece– 10 hrs ago DEC 20,12
PA Threatens 'Action' Against Israel if Netanyahu Wins
And here are the bounderies of the land that Israel will inherit either through war or peace or God in the future. God says its Israels land and only Israels land. They will have every inch God promised them of this land in the future.
Egypt east of the Nile River, Saudi Arabia, Israel, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, The southern part of Turkey and the Western Half of Iraq west of the Euphrates. Gen 13:14-15, Psm 105:9,11, Gen 15:18, Exe 23:31, Num 34:1-12, Josh 1:4.ALL THIS LAND ISRAEL WILL DEFINATELY OWN IN THE FUTURE, ITS ISRAELS NOT ISHMAELS LAND.
12 TRIBES INHERIT LAND IN THE FUTURE
Bennett: I Won't Evict Jews from Their Homes
Bennett later clarified in a status he posted to his Facebook page that his remarks were in no way advocating for soldiers to refuse their commanders' orders."As one who led fighters in operations and in battle, I oppose refusing orders with all my soul and heart," he wrote. "I fulfilled all the orders in my 22 years in the army and will continue to do so. Personally I simply cannot evict a family from its home and would ask my commanders to release me from that. I pray and will work with all my might to ensure that the Israeli government will never evict families from their homes in this country. "A poll published during the program showed that Bennett's party would receive 12 seats in the Knesset, making it the third largest faction in the Knesset. Likud-Beytenu and Labor maintained their top two spots, garnering 37 and 20 mandates, respectively.Shas would win 11 seats, followed by Tzipi Livni's Hatenua with nine seats, and Yair Lapid's Yesh Atid would score seven seats. Meretz would have four seats.The results are consistent with other recent polls that have showed that Bennett is gaining strength.Reports this week indicated that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu does not want Bennett in his next coalition.The reason Netanyahu does not want Bayit Yehudi in his next government, sources close to him told Channel 10 News, is that he wants "a more centrist" government, which will include a hareidi party and at least one party from the "center," in order to avoid "the ultra-rightist image that the current coalition suffers from."On Wednesday it was reported that Netanyahu has asked MK Tzipi Hotovely (Likud) to make clear to the religious public that he has no intention of barring the entrance of Bayit Yehudi into his next coalition.Netanyahu reportedly said that he never told anyone that he intends to block Bennett and that this allegation is in fact a "spin" produced by Bennett himself, in order to pull religious Likud supporters into his camp.
Israel to UN: Declare Hizbullah a Terrorist Group
"It is time that European countries recognize Hizbullah as what it really is - an international terrorist organization," Prosor demanded in the letter to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.Ambassador Prosor said that "Hizbullah is expanding the weapons arsenal at its disposal to unprecedented proportions - more than 50,000 of the organization's rockets threaten Israel and the entire region, contrary to Security Council decisions."He added, this is an "explosive barrel of which the UN must take care."Prosor noted the explosion of an ammunition warehouse belonging to Hizbullah this week and said this incident shows that the region is in danger. He slammed Hizbullah for hiding weapons within civilian population centers, saying, "Not only does Hizbullah continue to obtain missiles and weapons contrary to the decisions of the Security Council, it also makes cynical use of civilians as human shields. It's no coincidence that the explosion occurred only 300 meters from a school."Hizbullah immediately accused Israel of carrying out an aerial bombing after its ammunition depot east of the port city of Tyre exploded on Monday.Similar explosions have occurred in the same area in the past two years. Hizbullah has denied that it stores weapons and ammunition in southern Lebanon, but Israel estimates that the terrorist organization not only stockpiles ammunition and guns but also has built up an arsenal of more than 60,000 missiles.The head of the Israeli Air Force, Amir Eshel, said on Wednesday that Israel's greatest concern is of increased attempts by Hizbullah to attain accomplishments by inserting unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) into Israeli territory.A report this week in The Washington Post indicated that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has moved some of his chemical weapons arsenal in the direction of Lebanon, where they may end up in the hands of Hizbullah.