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Christian Zionist and “Godfather” of the Israeli Army, Laid to Rest in Israel

Lt-Colonel John Henry PattersonThe ashes of Lt. Col. John Henry Patterson, the British commander of the Jewish legion during the First World War, were recently reburied in Israel at a ceremony that saw Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Ya’aklon lay wreathes at the warrior’s grave. The ceremony was attended by a host of senior officials including Israel’s President Rueven Rivlin as well as Patterson’s grandson.

Patterson, a Christian Zionist, had requested he be laid to rest next to his men in the Holy Land, and this ceremony and internment marked the fulfillment of that wish.

During his remarks, Netanyahu addressed Patterson’s grandson directly noting “It is no exaggeration that your grandfather, Lt. Col. John Henry Patterson, was the commander of the first Jewish fighting force since the days of Bar Kokhba [nearly 2,000 years ago]. And as such he can be called the godfather of the Israeli army.”

Patterson’s impact on the Netanyahu family was so great that the Prime Minister’s late father, historian Ben-Zion Netanyahu, of blessed memory, named his first son, Yonatan, after Patterson (Yonatan is the Hebrew version of Johnathan). Yonatan Netanyahu, of blessed memory, was killed in 1976 while leading a team of Israeli commandos in a daring rescue mission that freed nearly 100 Israeli hostages being held by Palestinian terrorists at the Entebbe airport in Uganda.

While a small and distinguished club, Patterson was not the only Christian Zionist who in the days before Israel’s modern establishment, and during the Israel’s War of Independence, were instrumental in contributing to the establishment of the fledgling Jewish State.

Others include Major General Orde Charles Wingate, who helped train members of the Israeli Army’s pre-state predecessor, the Hagganah, and American businessman Charles Winters, who helped smuggle three B-17 bombers to Israeli forces in 1948. These planes were an essential component of Israel’s victory in that war.

Winters’ was later convicted in the US of violating the 1939 Neutrality Act and actually served 18 months in prison for his efforts in support of Israel. In 2008 President George W. Bush posthumously pardoned Winters, who, like Patterson is interred in Israel.

Khamenei backs extended nuke talks, says Israel at risk either way

Ali_Khamenei_(cropped).jpegIran’s top leader on Thursday said he would not stand in the way of continued nuclear negotiations with world powers and would accept a “fair” agreement, but vowed not to bow to bullying by the United States.

Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei added that a nuclear agreement with the P5+1 notwithstanding, Israel’s security would decline.

“Know that whether or not we reach a nuclear agreement, Israel becomes more insecure day by day,” he was quoted by Reuters as saying on Iranian state television, without elaborating. Read more at The Times of Israel.

Kicking the can down the road to nowhere

kerry nuclear talksThe end of the current 10-month round of nuclear negotiations with Iran on Monday left pundits and diplomats alike wondering what to make of the seven-month extension in talks, until June 2015.

But perhaps the question should be: Was a deal possible – even a middle-of-the-road, questionable deal – and if one was possible, was it closer this time than in previous rounds of talks? Though many past rounds and attempted compromises have failed, those saying the negotiations had a real chance for some kind of deal had a very strong argument.

Until US President Barack Obama offered Iran a list of new concessions – keeping its underground Fordow facility and Arak plutonium facility, the right to enrich uranium and the right to keep around 5,000 centrifuges for enriching uranium operating – it could be argued that the West had not turned over every stone possible to reach a deal. Read more at The Jerusalem Post.

Congress should end Obama’s dangerous charade with Iran

Iran nuke mapOn Dec. 10, 2013, Secretary of State John Kerry appeared before the House Foreign Affairs Committee to make the case for a tentative six-month agreement reached with Iran a few weeks earlier over the radical Islamic regime’s nuclear program. “We’re asking you to give our negotiators and our experts the time and the space to do their jobs, and that includes asking you while we negotiate that you hold off imposing new sanctions,” Kerry pleaded to lawmakers.

This Nov. 24 — after those six months of talks and a six-month extension both bore no fruit – Kerry and his team of negotiators agreed to give the regime yet another seven-month extension. But what more is there to talk about?

Over the course of the negotiations, the Obama administration has given ground to Iran on uranium enrichment, plutonium development and missile technology. This has not led to a deal. Iran continues deceive the international community, to inch toward a nuclear weapon, and to enjoy billions of dollars in sanctions relief in the meantime. Read more at The Washington Examiner.