Alan Edelstein

Comedy Central, Mrs. Arafat, and the resurrection of Andy Kaufman

Israel doesn’t have SNL. It doesn’t have Jon Stewart and the Daily Show. Sadly, it doesn’t have Colbert. But, we’ve got something even better:  We’ve got the Middle East, and it doesn’t get any more entertaining than in our very own neighborhood.

Think I’m kidding? Try these:

According to Hamas and its allies, Israel and Jews are evil incarnate, to blame for virtually every wound, even those self-inflicted, suffered by the Arab world. Hamas keeps calling for the Zionist entity’s destruction.

Yet the Hamas Prime Minister, Ismail Haniyeh, who is often the first in line to declare how murderous and mean the Israelis are, apparently had no problem having his granddaughter transferred to the “Zionist entity” to be treated in an Israeli hospital for a life-threatening condition.

In a clear case of “babywashing,” Israeli doctors attempted to treat the one-year old for an infection of her digestive system. About two years ago Haniyeh’s brother-in-law came to Israel for life-saving heart surgery.

One wonders if the Haniyeh’s health insurance has a provision that includes Zionist Entity/Occupier providers.

Given that the Hamas government regularly pressures the tens of thousands of Gazans who cross the border to receive treatment in Israeli hospitals (often at no cost) to not go, one wonders what the public would think if word got out that his family seems to make a habit of the Israeli health care system.

No worries. No press reports in Gaza. The baby’s father, Haniyeh’s oldest son, did post on Facebook that the baby had “crossed the green line” for treatment. That post came down fast. Not sure how many “friends” he still has.

Unfortunately, Israeli doctors determined that there is nothing they could do for the baby and she has returned to Gaza. Wondering who will be blamed for her death?

Here’s a hint: The investigation into the alleged poisoning of Yasser Arafat is complete. Residues of polonium was reported to be found on Arafat’s clothing. 

The Swiss scientists were moderately confident that he was poisoned. The Russians expressed doubts. The apparently still-grieving Mrs. Arafat, who seldom lived with her husband while he was alive but lives very nicely now, undoubtedly thanks to the late leader’s wise financial planning, says it has to have been an inside job done by someone close to the late President.

But P.A. representatives have no doubts. With evidence that would have made Jack Lord blush and Danno raise an eyebrow, the P.A. know they have their man or, perhaps more accurately, their people. They didn’t hesitate to say “Book ’em. All of em.”

Palestinian investigators declared that Israel is “the only suspect” in the great one’s death. P.A. Minister of Religious Affairs Mahmoud Habbash apparently didn’t need to have an investigation in the first place, declaring “We never had the slightest doubt that they [Israel] killed him. They killed him in one way or another.”

And, apparently being a terrific P.I., Habbash wrapped up another long-open investigation at the same time, declaring that Israel poisoned Arafat in the same way that the Jews poisoned Mohammed. Talk about one for Cold Case. This case was as cold as a glacier before climate change.

But that was no problem for P.I. Habbash. And how does the Religious Affairs Minister know that the Jews poisoned Mohammed? Apparently he or someone else overheard a conversation between the prophet and his wife, Aisha. According to the allegation, “When the prophet was dying, he told Aisha [his wife]: ‘I feel the pain of the poison I ate in Khaibar [a Jewish town].’ The poison he ate in Khaibar. He continued to suffer from the pain until he died.”

Case closed.

Israel sure is busy. It’s getting to sound like a Homeland episode. As reported by Tablet Magazine, Iran’s Press TV recently reported that Israel killed Kennedy. The author of the story, Kevin Barrett, who, in addition to being a 9/11 conspiracy theorist, a Holocaust denier, and a former lecturer at the University of Wisconsin (my daughter’s alma mater–can I have my money back?), writes that Israel was upset that Kennedy refused to be dictated to as all presidents since JFK have.

So, naturally, Israel killed JFK, and now all of the presidents have listened and done exactly what Israel has wanted them to do. Yup.

As I previously wrote, the European Union recently reported that the Palestinian Authority cannot account for $2.6 billion of the funds it has given them. Mystery solved: The Times of Israel reported that P.A. President Abbas is giving $50,000 to each of the terrorists recently released by Israel.

There must be a line item on the balance sheet for “rewarding murderers of innocent people.” Isn’t it standard accounting practice? Even though the Middle East is providing plenty of comedy, the rest of the world still has a chance to be in on the action.

A woman has surfaced claiming that Andy Kaufman is still alive and that she is his daughter. Sounds suspicious. Not to worry. The P.A. Religious Affairs Minister will investigate the affair. He’s probably already written his conclusions.

About the Author
Alan Edelstein made Aliyah in 2011 and lives in Jerusalem. He was the founding partner of a well-respected California government affairs firm and was involved in California government and politics as a lobbyist and consultant for 30 years. He blogs at He can be reached at