• Was there a plot to assassinate Maronite Patriarch Bechara Rai? Somebody was arrested, but Lebanese officials insist they only detained a mentally imbalanced man. The patriarch celebrated an emotional mass with exiled members of the pro-Israel South Lebanese Army now living in Capernaum. AP was on hand.
• For more commentary/analysis, see Ben-Dror Yemini (connecting the demonization of Israel with the Brussels shooting), Emmanuel Navon (without Zionism, the Temple Mount wouldn’t be as holy to Islam), Morton Klein (poof, the magic settlements), William Jacobson (BDS is a war council and student groups should reject it), and Chemi Shalev (Obama’s speech lacked peace process and fire in his belly).
Rest O’ the Roundup
While phishing scams go on all the time and are conducted by all manner of Internet criminals, the level of sophistication and organization indicates that the people behind the scam belonged to a large organization, and the type of victims targeted indicates that it was conducted by a government seeking to get information about defense systems, strategies, and policies. That the main targets were Israelis and supporters of Israel in the US and the UK — and that the topic of discussion was usually Israeli defense — makes it most likely that Iran is the culprit.
One night last June, long before Field Marshal Abdel Fattah Al Sisi was seen as presidential material here, the news directors of six satellite news channels huddled in an office to discuss growing protests outside by backers of Mohammed Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood leader elected president after the Arab Spring uprising.
The news directors say they were terrified. Islamists enraged at the stations’ criticisms of Mr. Morsi had surrounded the office park that housed their TV offices, intimidating reporters who came and went.
The news directors made a decision: From then on, their stations would refer to Muslim Brotherhood supporters as “terrorists.”
• A real-life game of thrones is playing out in Saudi Arabia, where King Abdullah appointed a “deputy heir to the throne.” Royal watchers who talked to the Washington Post are trying to make sense of the unusual move, the unusual choice, and the unusual way in which it happened.
• The Canberra Times sat down with Israel’s new ambassador to Australia, Shmuel Ben-Shmuel. The former paratrooper’s main goal is boosting trade ties.
(Image of Holtschneider via YouTube/City Club Chicago)
For more, see yesterday’s Israel Daily News Stream.