Friday, March 22, 2019

From Ian:

Jewish and antisemitic?
David Collier on the antisemitism denial industry
Independent writer and researcher David Collier has released a new 270-page report in which he went undercover into a secret Facebook group to expose key Jewish anti-Zionist and antisemitic activists and their relations with people who share materials from Neo-Nazis and white supremacist websites.

“These Jewish activists are most vocal at suggesting there is little or no antisemitism,” Collier explains. But in private, “They belittle or joke about the allegations.”

Who are they joking with about antisemitism?

According to Collier, these activists are laughing about antisemitism with people who post white supremacist material, Holocaust denial and take their keys from Holocaust denial websites.

“They say that as a Zionist, I am the enemy,” Collier notes in a film on the report. “But these Jewish activists spend time attacking Israel alongside people who share material from Nazi sites. Those people are their allies, and I am the enemy.”

He cites several examples, such as BDS activist Ariel Gold. She is a member of Code Pink. In a Facebook post, independent journalist, researcher Ariyana Love is complaining about being called an antisemite, “Ariel jumps in to calm her down.

“She doesn’t ask what happened or what was said,” notes Collier.

Then he demonstrates that Love shares antisemitic content, including from the “Renegade Tribune,” a well-known white separatist, Holocaust denying, historical revisionist, neo-Nazi website established in 2012 by Kyle Hunt. In one post, she said that 6 million Jews dying in the Holocaust was a hoax.

Israel Advocacy: Fighting for the truth
In a room below the United Nation Human Rights Council which once again condemned Israel and the IDF one day after a deadly terror attack in the West Bank, sat a number of IDF reservists who wanted one thing: To tell their side of the story which has been ignored by the world body.

“We are here not for the State of Israel, but for us,” said Eli Bogdan, a former squad commander in the IDF. “In many combat operations civilians are being used by militants in order for them to carry out attacks and escape. How come the IDF is being condemned and not Hamas which uses their own women and children as human shields?”

Bogdan is part of My Truth, an organization established following Operation Protective Edge in 2014 by Avihai Shorshan, which collects signed testimonies and photographs from combat operations between 2004-2018 in the West Bank and Gaza Strip that attest to the use of human shields and other human rights violations by Hamas and other terror groups.

The organization has documented testimonies from dozens of former combat soldiers, including several who just recently finished their military service and were posted along the Gaza border fence during the “March of Return” protests.

For these soldiers, who still serve in their reserve duty, the front lines are not only in the West Bank or Gaza Strip. It’s everywhere they go, and against everything they hear.

Several volunteers of the organization – who continue to do their reserve service in the IDF – flew into Geneva on Sunday with the goal of sharing their stories from the front lines.

“The war we are fighting where Hamas takes the fight towards civilians is a very hard war to fight,” Bogdan said at a panel alongside NGO Monitor and UN Watch. “They hide not because they have nowhere to hide, but because they know how the IDF acts. This is the worst violation of human rights in the world, they are using their own women and children.”

Antisemitism is the key election issue for 28 per cent of Jews, with Brexit a distant second
Twenty eight per cent of British Jews say that antisemitism is now the single most important issue in deciding which party to vote for — nearly double the next issue, Brexit, on 15 per cent with the economy on 13 per cent.

The poll, conducted by Survation for the Jewish Leadership Council and given exclusively to the JC, also found that 96 per cent say antisemitism is “important” in deciding which party to support.

Despite claims by Labour to be making progress on dealing with antisemitism, the poll shows that attitudes among British Jews have solidified and are effectively unchanged since a similar JC poll last August.

In that poll, nearly 40 per cent said they would “seriously consider” emigrating if Jeremy Corbyn became Prime Minister. That number has now risen to 42 per cent.

In this latest JC poll, of 757 British Jews conducted between February 18 and March 15, 86 per cent say they believe there are significant levels of antisemitism among Labour’s members and representatives — the same figure as in August 2018.

Similarly, 87 per cent of the Jewish community believe Jeremy Corbyn is himself antisemitic, up from 86 per cent in August 2018.

Only one per cent believe the Conservative leader, Theresa May, is antisemitic. (h/t Zvi)

  • Friday, March 22, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon
If you search for "Jewish peace organizations" on Google, its algorithm provides you with all the groups it feels you are most likely asking for, based on Google's analysis of their websites and articles.

Here's what Google provides as the answer:

After "Jewish Voice for Peace" and J-Street, it lists the Palestinian National Authority - and Hamas.

 If you look at the Hamas webpage in English, it looks startlingly like one of the Jewish "peace groups." And it is no coincidence that Hamas in English emphasizes "rights" and "justice" while in Arabic it stresses martyrdom and violence.

Indeed, these "peace organizations" have a lot in common with Hamas. They all cynically use the language of  "rights" and "justice"  to weaken or destroy the Jewish state.

They don't care about peace or rights or justice for Jews in Israel. They only care about rights and "justice" for Palestinian Arabs - where the Palestinians themselves are the judge and jury, ready to veto anything but their maximal demands. Of course Hamas has a lot in common with these pseudo-Jewish "peace" organizations!

(h/t DefendingCanada)

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From Ian:

Israel's Sovereignty on the Golan Heights: Why Now?
The restoration of part of the Jewish people to part of its historic, indigenous territory did not need ratification by the League of Nations or the U.N. Jews lived there from the beginning – sometimes only a remnant, and after 70 C.E. under various occupations, and in increasing numbers beginning in the 19th century. Its capital was never anyone else’s capital. To be a modern, independent state, however, the Jewish people accepted the international standards of the 20th century – the Balfour Declaration, with an endorsement by the U.S. Congress in 1922, the League of Nations, and the United Nations – in support of its sovereign status.

That’s it. The fact that the Arab States not only did not accept those standards, but went to war more than once to turn the clock back has nothing to do with anything.

As we mourn the passing of Moshe Arens — Israeli patriot and diplomat, defense minister and aeronautical engineer, we quote him. “According to the second law of thermodynamics there are no reversible processes in nature. Nothing can return exactly to its original state. This law may not hold in international relations, but the exceptions are few and far between.”

The U.N. may have a better chance of reversing the laws of thermodynamics than of bringing Syria to accept its obligations under U.N. Resolution 242.

But in 1967, the U.N. was smarter than that. Resolution 242 did not confirm some nebulous “right to exist” for Israel; that was established. It didn’t even call for “peace” as its ultimate aim. Instead, it required “a just and lasting peace in which every State in the area can live in security.” Peace was the condition that would provide security – and security for a sovereign Israel was the endgame.

How long is Israel required to wait? It has been almost 52 years since Syria lost the Golan Heights as a result of aggression from that space that began before the independence of Israel. It is 45 years since Israel repulsed the aggression of the Yom Kippur War.

It is appropriate for the world to ratify Israel’s right, not to minimal or shaky “existence,” but rather to “secure and recognized boundaries free from threats or acts of force” on the Golan.
Trump's Golan Announcement Was No Impulse Tweet
Donald Trump once again overturned decades of U.S. policy via Twitter when he declared on Thursday that the United States should recognize Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, a disputed territory Israel seized in the 1967 war with Syria. The area, he wrote, is “of critical strategic and security importance to the State of Israel and Regional Stability!”

The timing of the announcement, ahead of Israeli elections on April 9, drew immediate accusations that it was aimed to benefit Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who faces a competitive campaign as well as a looming indictment over alleged corruption. Following the move of the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem last May, this was the second time that Trump reversed long-standing U.S. positions on Israel, appearing to offer a major gift to the Israeli prime minister without any obvious concessions in return. Yet the push for Trump to make such a move has been going on for more than a year, due to parallel efforts by Israeli officials and members of Congress.

Senator Ted Cruz of Texas was already drafting a plan to reinforce Israel’s control over the territory, which it effectively annexed in 1981, last summer. The rationale at the time had less to do with Israeli politics than with Iran, which was consolidating strength in Syria via its proxy Hezbollah and directly threatening Israel’s borders. The issue was also being discussed at the highest levels of the State Department and the National Security Council, according to Mark Dubowitz, who co-wrote a February 2017 op-ed calling for the Golan recognition and was engaged in the discussions. The National Security Council would not comment on internal discussions, and the State Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

In the meantime, the Cruz plan was rolling along, and it was introduced as a Senate resolution co-sponsored by the Republican Tom Cotton in December. That was only days before Trump announced, also via tweet, his intention to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria. Trump has since partially reversed that policy, and the administration now says it intends to keep about 400 troops in Syria.
Trump's support for Israel's sovereignty over Golan Heights expected to make waves at UN
Israeli Ambassador to the U.N. Danny Danon wrote, "We are at the beginning of a historic moment for the State of Israel. President Trump once again proves the strength of the alliance between the US and Israel. The time has come for the world to recognize that the Golan Heights is an inseparable part of the State of Israel."

A spokesperson for United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres responded with no comment when asked for reaction to Trump’s tweet.

Last month Guterres’ Special Envoy for Syria Geir Pedersen was dismissive when asked about a push by Congress to recognize the Golan Heights as Israeli territory. He told reporters, “Obviously the Security Council is very clear that Golan is Syrian territory.”

Under former Prime Minister Menachem Begin, Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, passed a law in 1981 that officially annexed the Golan Heights. Begin cited serious security threats from Syria including the threat of missile attacks. Days later the U.N. Security Council passed a resolution that condemned the move, adding to its resolution 242 of 1967 that called for the removal of Israeli forces from its recently conquered territory during the Six-Day War.

U.N Security Council Resolution 497 from 1981 stated in part “that the Israeli decision to impose its laws, jurisdiction and administration in the occupied Syrian Golan Heights is null and void and without international legal effect.”

Eugene Kontorovich, a professor of international law at George Mason University in Washington, D.C., and director of international law at the Jerusalem-based Kohelet Policy Forum, told Fox News the resolution, “is not binding and has no legal force; it was merely a statement of the Council’s opinion. The U.S. has a sovereign right to disagree.”

Kontorovich, who has advised senior members of the U.S. administration on the Golan Heights, praised what he described as Trump’s courage. “Only a clear statement that the Golan is part of Israel can deter Iranian and Syrian attempts to challenge Israel’s control. While American politicians of all stripes claim they support Israel’s control of the Golan, most lacked the courage to translate this into the necessary diplomatic language of sovereignty - until Pres. Trump.”
Daily Kickoff: The drive to dominate the pre-AIPAC convo — Trump’s Golan gift
Prof. Eugene Kontorovich tells us: “I think it’s quite clear it’s not about the Israeli elections. And one reason it’s not about the Israeli elections is because support for Israeli sovereignty over the Golan is across the board. Bibi gets a lot of credit for this result, but so does Yair Lapid and people from Gantz’s party have worked hard for this result. This is truly a national project in Israel. And it’s good for everyone in Israel, it’s not a partisan issue in Israel.”

“Trump could have waited just a few days and announced this during the AIPAC conference, which would be a feather in AIPAC’s hat. But there’s a reason he didn’t, and I think the reason is that AIPAC was actually not pushing for a recognition of sovereignty. AIPAC was pushing — and you can see from their statement about this — for something that every last Democrat would approve of, a statement that Israel should retain control of the Golan Heights, which is a big difference. And what I think Trump is showing is that he is adopting a position that is more favorable to Israel than what AIPAC encouraged, and he is stealing AIPAC’s thunder by doing this before their conference.”
Another wonderful gift from Pennsylvania Avenue
The day on which we read the eternal sentence from the Book of Esther (8:16): "The Jews had light and gladness and joy and honor," which was uttered when salvation arrived after great despair – on that very day, Purim – we learned about another wonderful gift from the 45th president of the U.S., Donald Trump. He was recognizing Israeli sovereignty on the Golan Heights. Trump, as usual, put the news out on Twitter. A tweet of new heights!

After President Trump's historic tweet, I couldn't help but remember the funeral of former Syrian President Hafez Assad, which I covered in 2000. In the streets of Damascus, I saw Syrian women mourning the dead president, crying, "Who will hold onto the Golan for us?" I'm sorry to disappoint you, Syrian people, it looks like no one will give you back the Golan.

U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman was interviewed in the Israel Hayom Rosh Hashanah supplement and told diplomatic correspondent Ariel Kahana that he believed the Golan Heights could remain in Israel's hands forever and certainly wouldn't be returned to the current president of Syria, Assad's son Bashar.

I can't imagine a circumstance where the Golan Heights will be returned to Syria. I cannot imagine, frankly, a circumstance where the Golan Heights is not a part of Israel forever. There's not even an indigenous population in the Golan Heights seeking autonomy. … You'd put Israel at a great security disadvantage by giving up the high ground of the Golan Heights. … I can't think of a less deserving person to receive this kind of reward than Bashar Assad," Friedman said.

  • Friday, March 22, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon
Last week during the #Digitell19 conference, we went to Mitzpe Ramon to see the largest "erosion cirque" in the world (all of them are in Israel or Egypt:)

From Wikipedia:
Makhtesh Ramon (Hebrew: מכתש רמון; lit. Ramon Crater/Makhtesh ; Arabic: وادي الرمان‎) is a geological feature of Israel's Negev desert. Located at the peak of Mount Negev, some 85 km south of the city of Beersheba, the landform is not an impact crater from a meteor nor a volcanic crater formed by a volcanic eruption, but rather is the world's largest "erosion cirque" (steephead valley or box canyons). The formation is 40 km long, 2–10 km wide and 500 meters deep, and is shaped like an elongated heart. The only settlement in the area is the small town of Mitzpe Ramon (מצפה רמון, "Ramon Lookout") located on the northern edge of the depression. Today the area forms Israel's largest national park, the Ramon Nature Reserve.

Click on each panorama to see the real beauty in the Negev. The first two are from the middle of the crater:

The next two are from the edge of the crater, including a view of the attendees of the conference:

It is quite breathtaking.

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  • Friday, March 22, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon
Amnesty International issued a press release demanding that Hamas end its crackdown on protesters in Gaza.

Hamas has attacked protesters many times throughout the past decade, and Amnesty was silent. Amnesty only seems to have gotten upset because one of its own members was detained and interrogated by Hamas.

Today, an Amnesty International Research Consultant, Hind Khoudary, has been detained and interrogated by the security forces of the Ministry of Interior for working with Amnesty International. Her interrogation lasted for three hours during which four male interrogators subjected her to ill-treatment. The interrogators used abusive language and warned her not to carry out human rights research and threatened to prosecute her for spying and working as a foreign agent.

“The crackdown on freedom of expression and the use of torture in Gaza has reached alarming new levels. Over the past few days, we have seen shocking human rights violations carried out by Hamas security forces against peaceful protesters, journalists and rights workers,” said Saleh Higazi, Deputy Middle East and North Africa Director at Amnesty International.
The only times that Amnesty has ever used the word "shocking" about Hamas is now, and when Hamas executed "collaborators" in Gaza.

Compare this language to how Amnesty chided Hamas after a bus bombing in Israel in 2016 - and tried to exonerate it at the same time:

After the Hamas movement in Bethlehem claimed the person who detonated a bomb aboard a Jerusalem bus earlier this week as a member, Amnesty International reiterates that deliberate attacks on civilians can never be justified, and calls on Hamas to  condemn all such attacks.
On the evening of 18 April, 20 people were wounded when a Palestinian man detonated a bomb on an Israeli bus in Jerusalem. As of the evening of 21 April, three of those injured were still in intensive care, according to the Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz. Abd al-Hamid Abu Srour, a 19-year-old Palestinian man from Aida refugee camp in Bethlehem who was identified as the attacker, succumbed to his wounds late on 20 April.
On 21 April, the Hamas movement stated that the attacker was a member and one of its “committed activists” in Bethlehem. Israel police spokesperson Micky Rosenfeld stated that a “Hamas terrorist” carried out the attack, and the Israel Security Agency announced the arrest in the Bethlehem area of several “Hamas activists” suspected of involvement in the attack. While it does not appear that Hamas’ leadership or its military wing in Gaza ordered the attack, the involvement of the Hamas movement, possibly including members of its military wing in Bethlehem or elsewhere, is a worrying development. Hamas, including its political leadership in Gaza and elsewhere, must clearly condemn all attacks targeting civilians. Such attacks can never be justified and represent a serious violation of international humanitarian law. 
This is a perfunctory demand for an absurd result - that Hamas condemn its own people. There is no passion when Amnesty reports on Hamas outrages against Israelis.  The only language showing anger at the movement is when it attacks other Palestinians and internationals. And even that mild wrist slapping of Hamas in the bus bombing  was accompanied by accusations of Israel extrajudiciously killing Palestinians (during the "knife intifada") - effectively neutralizing any tiny demand on Hamas by saying that Israel is worse.

This week's press release is, as far as I can tell, the only time Amnesty didn't mention Israel when saying Hamas did something not completely in line with human rights.

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  • Friday, March 22, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon
From Wafa:

Human rights advocates slammed Vienna museum, Volkskundemuseum, for cancelling an event on Palestinian rights where former minister in Nelson Mandela’s government Ronnie Kasrils, a renowned South African anti-apartheid activist of Jewish descent, was scheduled to speak on the March 29 event as part of the annual Israeli Apartheid Week (IAW) and called for the event to be reinstated.

A press statement by the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement said the museum caved to pressure from Austria’s Israel lobby. Two other IAW events scheduled in France this week were also canceled.
European officials have finally woken up to the antisemitism that the "Israel Apartheid Week" activities represent, and the Israel-haters are on the defensive - a position that they are not used to dealing with.

They absurdly blame that "Israel lobby" - but what kind of Israel lobby does Austria have?

BDS Twitter accounts do not point to any recent victories. Instead. they are filled with useless calls for people to boycott specific things, or for people not to accept Israeli awards (see tweet below), along with tweets about other losses for the movement like the Swarthmore student government voting down a BDS resolution last month. (That vote, organized by Students for Justice in Palestine, was supposed to be secret and the BDSers were upset that somehow the Zionist students found out about it and had time to organize against it.)

BDS is finally being recognized for what it is, and as European nations this week have started to realize the bias in the UN Human Rights Council against Israel, the IAW activities are being seen for what it is - nothing to do with solidarity and everything to do about hate.

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Thursday, March 21, 2019

From Ian:

Trump says time has come for US to ‘recognize Israel’s sovereignty’ over Golan
US President Donald Trump said Thursday that the time has come to “fully recognize” Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, in another monumental shift in US Mideast policy by his administration.

“After 52 years it is time for the United States to fully recognize Israel’s Sovereignty over the Golan Heights, which is of critical strategic and security importance to the State of Israel and Regional Stability!,” Trump tweeted.

Following the announcement, Prime Minister Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke with Trump by phone to thank him. “You made history,” his office quoted him telling the US president.

Netanyahu also put out a tweet welcoming Trump’s statement.

“At a time when Iran seeks to use Syria as a platform to destroy Israel, President Trump boldly recognizes Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights. Thank you President Trump,” he said.

Though Trump said it was “time” for action, it was not clear that his statement constituted official recognition.

On Wednesday, Israeli and US officials had said they expected an announcement on US recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan could come next week.

Trump’s tweet came just hours after US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was joined by Netanyahu for a visit of the Western Wall, the first time that Washington’s top diplomat has visited Jerusalem’s contested Old City accompanied by a senior Israeli official. (h/t NormanF)

A Purim Message from the White House (h/t Jewess)

  • Thursday, March 21, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon
Continuing my re-captioning of single-panel cartoons....

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 Vic Rosenthal's Weekly Column

I think my interest in J Street could once have been called “obsessive.” I wrote numerous blog posts a few years ago, pointing out that the supposedly “pro-Israel, pro-peace” organization received financing from George Soros, mysterious billionaires in Hong Kong, and people associated with Iran, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and the Arab-American Institute. I noted – along with then Ambassador Michael Oren – that it consistently (one could say always) took positions opposed to almost any reasonable interpretation of Israel’s interests. I objected to its guiding principle, which seemed to be that it knew what was good for Israel far better than Israelis did, especially since following its recommendations would negatively impact Israel’s security. I wondered at the close coordination between J Street and the Obama Administration, which tried to anoint it as the voice of American Jewry toward Israel. And more.

Since I moved back to Israel in 2014, I’ve been less concerned with J Street, which is, after all, an American phenomenon. We have plenty of “interesting” politics right here. But recently I became aware of  a new J Street initiative, targeting PM Netanyahu, just before the election:
WASHINGTON, DC — The pro-Israel, pro-peace group J Street launched a new series of videos today highlighting the dangerously similar rhetoric and ideology shared by President Trump and Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu. Released as targeted digital ads just a week before the two leaders are expected to meet in Washington, DC on the sidelines of the AIPAC conference, the videos urge pro-Israel Americans who are opposed to Trump to also speak out against Netanyahu’s similar bigotry and anti-democratic tendencies.

“By attacking democratic institutions and targeting vulnerable minorities, Trump and Netanyahu are borrowing from the same far-right playbook — undermining the core values and interests of both the US and Israel,” said J Street’s president Jeremy Ben-Ami. “Patriotic Americans have mobilized impressively against Trump here at home. Those of us who care about Israel’s future need to speak out against Netanyahu’s destructive leadership as well.”

Over the past two years, both the president and the prime minister have incited against vulnerable minorities, attacked the free press and de-legitimized the judiciary and the rule of law. Both face serious investigations into alleged criminal conduct. …

There’s no doubt that liberal and progressive American Jews hate Trump passionately, and there’s no better way to attack Netanyahu among that group than by associating him with their bête noireThe first J Street video is here. It’s very professional and probably didn’t come cheap. The question is, why did J Street spend a considerable sum of money on such a campaign? Americans don’t vote in Israeli elections (although J Street probably wishes they did). Why attack Netanyahu in the USA?

It’s not a simple question and I don’t have a simple answer. Unfortunately, the position papers of J Street’s psychological warfare experts aren’t public. But I have some ideas.

J Street’s primary goal, like that of the numerous other anti-Israel organizations in the US, including the nominally “Jewish” If Not Now and Jewish Voice for Peace, as well as explicitly antisemitic ones like If America Knew, is to create antipathy and distrust for Israel, so that Americans will oppose pro-Israel actions by the US government – for example, the recognition of Israel’s possession of the Golan Heights that is rumored to be on the table now.

In the event of war, they want to prime Americans to believe Palestinian atrocity propaganda against Israel, to make it more difficult for a pro-Israel administration to support Israel, or easier for an anti-Israel one to criticize her or even cut off critical supplies – as Obama did during the 2014 Gaza war.

How does attacking PM Netanyahu accomplish this? The answer has several parts.

First, J Street presents Netanyahu as anti-democratic and dictatorial, as if he is entirely responsible for Israeli policy; so it becomes possible for an American Jew who still feels some loyalty to Israel to separate the country from its Prime Minister, and blame him for supposedly anti-democratic or racist policies, without being forced to make the jump to disliking Israel the nation.

Second, and conversely, Netanyahu has been PM since 2009 and – at least as of today – it is likely that he will receive yet another term. He is Israel in the minds of many Americans, just as Stalin was the Soviet Union and Hitler the Nazi regime. An attack on Netanyahu as racist and anti-minority, and in other ways that particularly resonate in America, also creates negative perceptions of the state of Israel herself.

Third, attitudes in America, as expressed in the media, do have some influence on Israeli elections. There is no doubt that the forces behind J Street would like to see Netanyahu defeated in the coming election. Netanyahu’s political opponents can point to anti-Netanyahu expressions in the US and say, “look, Netanyahu has wrecked our relationship with the US.” J Street’s theme that Netanyahu and Trump are both corrupt, anti-democratic racists will find a fertile field in the progressive media such as NPR and the NY Times that are favored by J Street’s constituency. Because the campaign bashes both Trump and Netanyahu, it will certainly be amplified in those media, which are always ready to take a swipe at Trump.

Fourth, closely associating Trump with Netanyahu minimizes the significance of Trump’s pro-Israel actions like moving the US Embassy to Jerusalem, cutting funds to the Palestinian Authority, downgrading the East Jerusalem consulate, and – I devoutly hope – recognizing Israel’s annexation of the Golan Heights.

J Street’s attack on both Trump and Netanyahu is couched in the universalist, anti-nationalistic (and therefore anti-Zionist) language that finds favor with the progressive Left:
The politics of these two leaders is part of a broader global challenge to liberal democracies rooted in respect for civil society and tolerance of ethnic diversity. Now, the world faces a wave of rising right-wing ethnonationalism with anti-democratic tendencies.

The xenophobia and authoritarianism that the two leaders are fanning is anathema to millions of Americans and American Jews. “While Netanyahu, Trump and their allies may get standing ovations at AIPAC, their views and actions couldn’t be more out of touch with most of the American Jewish community,” Ben-Ami said.

This exposes the true agenda behind J Street, which is actually only one piece of a much larger enterprise opposing nationalism and ethnic particularism, favoring open borders and multiculturalism, and proudly trumpeting extreme cultural relativism. If you think that agenda is a positive one for civilization, look at the ongoing destruction of native European societies like Sweden, for example.

Netanyahu – and Israel, an ethnic nation-state – represent the precise opposite of the agenda, and as such have drawn down upon themselves the wrath of J Street and other such groups, which tendentiously accuse them of being “undemocratic,” “authoritarian,” “racist,” and more. But in fact the “ethnonationalism” that J Street so decries stands opposed to a non-ethnic but much more vicious Islamofascism, which is far less democratic, more authoritarian, and viciously bigoted along religious lines.

The “global challenge to liberal democracies” does not come from nationalism, either in Israel or Eastern Europe, or from Americans who support Trump. It comes from Iran, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, the Muslim Brotherhood, and so on. Netanyahu has a sense of history, and understands all this. And I think that Trump, for all his flaws, does too.

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From Ian:

Meet some of the people the UN calls “civilians” killed in Gaza border clashes
Joe Truzman presented his findings, which are at odds with a UN Report, on the identity of many of those killed — they were military members of terrorist groups including Hamas and Islamic Jihad.

We have extensively documented how the supposedly “peaceful protests” at the Gaza-Israel border fence are, in reality, Hamas and Islamic Jihad military terror operations using some civilians as cover, including women and children.

The so-called ‘Great March of Return’ is turned on and off by Hamas as its needs require.

Over 80% of the Gazans killed at the border have been military members of terrorist groups, the best evidence that these are not really civilian protests. Even some of the “children” involved, and who have been killed or injured, were teenage military members of terrorist groups.

Joe Truzman has been a leader in documenting the identity of the terrorists involved at the border, and the violent actions directed at Israel, as we noted in Meet Joe Truzman, our go-to source on Gaza and Palestinian terror groups.

Increasingly, Joe is being recognized for his work, including by UN Watch, which fights anti-Israel bias at the UN, including the UN Human Rights Council. UN Watch organized an alternative program on the day the UN Human Right Council was holding another on of its anti-Israel hatefests. This most recent hatefest included release of a biased report about the Gaza border protests and the death of Palestinians, portraying the events as civilian protests.
One-sided UNHRC report ignores Hamas' Aggression
Instead of condemning Hamas as the prime source of violence and instability in Gaza - the United Nations Human Right Council is blaming the victims of Hamas terrorism for acting in self-defence.

Any council member which holds peace dear must REJECT this resolution!

UK, Austria to oppose UN Human Rights Council condemnations of Israel
The United Kingdom said Thursday it will automatically oppose all proposals made to the United Nations Human Rights Council under a fixed item exclusively devoted to Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians.

The announcement came as Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz declared that his country will vote against a key resolution lashing Israel, which is up for a vote this week.

Britain’s Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said the council’s so-called Agenda Item 7 “undermines the credibility of the world’s leading human rights forum” and “obstructs the quest for peace in the Middle East.”

As a permanent item on the agenda, Item 7 means no session of the Geneva-based council can be held without specifically discussing Israel.

The council was set to vote on four resolutions Friday condemning Israel for alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity.

“Two years ago, the United Kingdom said that unless the situation changed, we would vote against all texts proposed under Item 7,” Hunt wrote in an op-ed published Thursday in the UK’s Jewish Chronicle weekly.

“Sadly, our concerns have not been heeded. So I have decided that we will do exactly what we said: Britain will now oppose every Item 7 resolution. On Friday we will vote against all four texts proposed in this way.”

Jeremy Hunt: The UN Human Rights Council ignored our concerns on its Israel approach. Now we must act
In some countries in the Middle East, the result of the next election is a foregone conclusion. Yet on April 9, millions of voters in Israel will decide the fate of their leaders – and no-one can predict the outcome.

A fair-minded observer would find it curious that, of all the situations in the world, only Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories are permanently on the agenda of the United Nations Human Rights Council (HRC).

The horrors of Syria’s civil war, the brutal detention camps in North Korea, the ethnic cleansing of Rohingya Muslims in Burma – all these human tragedies have been the subject of important HRC Resolutions, passed with Britain’s full support.

But amid such catastrophes, a dedicated place on the HRC agenda - known as Item 7 – is reserved solely for Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories. This means no session can take place without a specific discussion of this subject.

By any standard of fairness or proportion, elevating this dispute above all others cannot be sensible; indeed it is an unhelpful illusion to suppose that Israel’s conduct deserves special scrutiny.

When Item 7 was first introduced, Ban Ki-Moon, then UN Secretary General, voiced his disappointment “given the range and scope of allegations of human rights violations throughout the world”.

Far from serving any useful purpose, I fear that this dedicated place obstructs the quest for peace in the Middle East.

Jeremy Hunt's move today shows Britain has failed to reform the UN Human Rights Council from within
When the United States stormed out of the UN Human Rights Council over its treatment of Israel last summer, Britain’s then chief diplomat Boris Johnson vowed to stay put.

Washington’s view in June 2018 was that it was plainly unjust for Israel to be only country whose alleged human rights abuses are discussed at every regular meeting without fail.

“The world’s most inhumane regimes continue to escape scrutiny,” one American official said as her country ended its HRC membership 18 months early.

But the United Kingdom — which became a member at the same time at the US — said it would not be staging a walkout of its own.

Mr Johnson said the HRC had many failings and Israel’s permanent place on the agenda was one of them. A “disproportionate and damaging to the cause of peace”, he called it.

But, he went on, the world needed a forum where countries could talk to each other about human rights abuses.Thus the HRC was the “best tool address impunity in an imperfect world and to advance many of our international goals.”

  • Thursday, March 21, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon
Continuing my re-captioning of single-panel cartoons....

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  • Thursday, March 21, 2019
  • Elder of Ziyon
California State University, of which San Francisco State University is a part, settled a lawsuit this week where they pretty much admitted that their campus was a hotbed of antisemitism.

As a settlement in a lawsuit brought by the Lawfare Project and another law firm, SFSU agreed to take Jewish student complaints seriously using an outside investigator, to hire a coordinator for Jewish life at the university, to fund viewpoints usually not allowed to be freely expressed at the university like Zionist perspectives, and a couple of other things to enhance the comfort of Jewish and Zionist students from the daily assaults they labored under.

Here's most of the press release:

SAN FRANCISCO, CA — The Lawfare Project and Winston & Strawn LLP today reached a landmark settlement in their lawsuits against the California State University (CSU) public university system.
The settlement in Volk v. Board of Trustees comes ahead of this month's scheduled trial for a lawsuit brought by two Jewish students who allege that San Francisco State University (SFSU) and the Board of Trustees of CSU discriminated against them.
As part of the settlement, SFSU agreed to:

  • Public statement: Issue a statement affirming that
    "it understands that, for many Jews, Zionism is an important part of their identity";
  • Coordinator of Jewish Student Life: "Hire a Coordinator of Jewish Student Life within the Division of Equity & Community Inclusion" and dedicate suitable office space for this position; 
  • External review of policies: "Retain an independent, external consultant to assess SFSU’s procedures for enforcement of applicable CSU system-wide anti-discrimination policies and student code of conduct";
  • Independent investigation of additional complaints: "SFSU will, for a period of 24 months, assign all complaints of religious discrimination under either E.O. 1096 or E.O. 1097 to an independent, outside investigator for investigation";
  • Funding viewpoint diversity: "SFSU will allocate an additional $200,000 to support educational outreach efforts to promote viewpoint diversity (including but not limited to pro-Israel or Zionist viewpoints) and inclusion and equity on the basis of religious identity (including but not limited to Jewish religious identity)"; and
  • Campus mural: Engage in the SFSU process to allocate "space on the SFSU campus for a mural to be installed under the oversight of the Division of Equity & Community Inclusion, paid for by the University, that will be designed by student groups of differing viewpoints on the issues that are the subject of this litigation to be agreed by the parties (including but not limited to Jewish, pro-Israel, and/or Zionist student groups, should such student groups elect to participate in the process)."
  • "California State University’s public recognition that Zionism is an integral part of Jewish identity represents a major victory for Jewish students at SFSU and across the country. Today, we have ensured that SFSU will put in place important protections for Jewish and Zionist students to prevent continued discrimination. We are confident that this will change the campus climate for the better," said Brooke Goldstein, Executive Director of The Lawfare Project. "The Lawfare Project was proud to play a role in securing justice for Jewish and Zionist students at SFSU. We commend the student plaintiffs who showed the courage to stand up and advocate for their civil rights." 
    "We are incredibly happy with this result," said Ross M. Kramer of Winston & Strawn LLP. "Our clients' goal was to bring about meaningful, lasting change at San Francisco State University and throughout the California State University system, and to make sure that the rights of all Jewish students are safeguarded now and into the future. That's what this settlement achieves."

    (h/t MtTB) 

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