Saturday, November 22, 2014

From Ian:

Terror: the enemy of Palestinian statehood
Israel sits at the frontline of the terrorists’ threat and to curtail their radical dystopia from consuming the civilised world a strong and prosperous Israel is vital. This is why free and democratic countries, like Australia, should forge a strong alternative narrative of their own, that can counter the narrative of violence stoked by militant Palestinians and Islamic State. To recognise that an attack on Israeli citizens is an attack on the same fundamental ideals upon which countries like Australia were built: this is the narrative that will demonstrate to Islamic extremists that when they attack Israel — when they desecrate peaceful faith — they attack a camaraderie of nations that will not tolerate violence as a political tool.
We rely on your friendship. This year’s violence has not defeated us, but the people of Israel need to be consoled by solidarity from abroad so that they can trust in the international system to help protect them. Israelis need the international community to be emphatic in condemning the incitement of violence and to encourage Palestinian leadership to curtail violent extremism in their own ranks. The cause of Israel should be the cause of every peace-loving democracy.
Also, Muslims that desire a sustainable statehood for Palestinians should loathe and abhor the recent murder of Israelis as much as anyone else, for, in addition to being an affront to our common humanity, it only damages their aspirations.
Make no mistake; those that employ terrorism as a means of furthering political Islam are the greatest enemies of Palestinian statehood.
The people who live among this conflict need to be able to give their leaders the space to lead. That bands of disgruntled and radicalised Palestinians continue to take matters into their own hands, motivated by blind hatred and anger, only impedes the ability of our leaders to act with the measured clarity that is required.
Shmuel Ben- Shmuel is the Israeli ambassador to Canberra.
"Their Main Goal Is To Eliminate Israel & Establish An Islamic State": Jordanian opposition figure on Palestinian aims (video)
Here's Mudar Zahran, the Jordanian opposition figure of Palestinian background who's very sympathetic to Israel, interviewed on Brett and Jon Rappaport's current affairs series The Final Say about the current situation in the Middle East.
"They are ... in their own world when it comes to radicalism and hatred Of Israel ...Their main goal is to eliminate Israel and establish an Islamic state."
In that quotation, is Mr Zahran talking about Hamas?
No. He's talking about the attitude of Palestinians in the West Bank, where he spent this past summer.
Regarding the people of Gaza, he says
"[T]hey have had enough of Hamas. They would love to see Hamas go."
He is scornful of the Kerry Plan and the current vogue for recognising Palestinian statehood..
The Palestinian Authority is corrupt and affiliated with terrorism."
"Basically the West is pushing Israel as if [statehood] is going to solve all the problems .... It's a bad idea."
His solution?
"[T]he only logical option is a Palestinian state east of the river ...."
Jordanian PM sends condolence letter to families of Har Nof terrorists
The Jordanian prime minister, Abdullah Ensour, sent a condolence letter to the families of the two Palestinian terrorists who killed five Israelis in a terror attack at a synagogue in Jerusalem on Tuesday morning.
“I ask God to envelope them with mercy and to grant you with patience, comfort and recovery from your grief,” Ensour wrote in the letter, according to Channel 10.
On Wednesday, Jordanian parliament members held a moment of silence and read Koran verses aloud in memory of the two terrorists, cousins Uday Abu Jamal and Ghassan Abu Jamal from the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Jabel Mukaber.
“Regarding the martyrs who bombed and murdered Zionists, I’m asking the respected parliament to stand up and to read the al-Fatiha [verse from the first chapter of the Quran] to glorify their pure souls and the souls of all the martyrs in the Arab and Muslim nations,” an unnamed MP said, according to a Channel 10 translation of the remarks at the parliament session.



Qatar and Terror
Although outwardly more liberal than the Saudis, the Qataris have surpassed them as financiers of extremism and terrorism.
U.S. officials reckon that Qatar has now replaced Saudi Arabia as the source of the largest private donations to the Islamic State and other al-Qaeda affiliates.
Qatar, the world's wealthiest country per capita, also has the unsavory reputation for the mistreatment and effective slavery of much of its workforce.
Leaders of Western states threatened by jihadi advances are happy to sit down with the largest financiers of terrorism in the world, offer them help, take as much money as they can, and smile for the cameras.
The Truth About ‘Intifadas’
Many journalists covering the Mideast are like an old Russian joke during the time of dictator Josef Stalin.
One Russian asks his neighbor: “What’s happening?”
Russian response: Ya ni-znayoo ee-Ni-khatchoo znat: “I don’t know, and I don’t want to know.”
That was the safest way to answer questions under Stalin, and many reporters covering Arab terrorists use the same policy (just ask Tom Friedman and Robert Fisk).
Today’s Mideast-minded media do not know, and do not want to know, but they want you to think that they really know
Many Western reporters and quite a few Israeli pundits have been asking themselves if Israel is seeing a new “intifada” – an Arab term whose real Arabic meaning few Western reporters know and whose strategic significance they do not want to know.
Intifada means “shaking off,” as when a dog shakes off excess water or dust, or a person or a camel has a tremor or shivers with fever. “Intifada”  was coined as a political term in 1978 by two militant Palestinian Arab mayors who wanted to “shake-off” the Egyptian-Israeli peace process.
The mayors, Muhammad Milhem and Fahd Qawasmeh, were chosen in the first free voting in the Arab world – the Israeli-run elections in the West Bank in 1972 and 1976. The Israelis allowed people to vote without property restrictions, and then, in 1976, allowed women to vote.
Milhem of Halhoul and Qawasmeh of Hebron were PLO supporters and hated the idea of peace with Israel.
Keep that in mind whenever you hear the term intifada. Its primary meaning is hating Israel and the idea of making peace with Israel.
Conspiracy Theories and Palestinian Terror
Israelis and their government are not perfect but the willingness of Palestinians to believe any tall tale about Jewish crimes has little to do with the Netanyahu government’s policies and everything to do with a variant of Jew hatred that has found a home in the Middle East in the last 100 years. While it is possible to talk about what Israel might do to appease their antagonists’ ambitions in order to promote peace, it is this virus of anti-Semitism that must be addressed if any Palestinian leader will ever have the courage to sign a peace deal with the Israelis that will recognize the legitimacy of a Jewish state no matter where its borders might be drawn.
The lunacy that leads to blood-soaked bodies lying on a synagogue floor begins with this hate and paranoia that has driven itself deep into the psyche of the Palestinian imagination. It is the same psychosis that allows Palestinian Authority media and officials to promote conspiracy theories and praise terrorists. So long as even a supposed moderate such as PA leader Mahmoud Abbas can call a terrorist murderer a “martyr” who went straight to heaven, why should we be surprised that Jerusalem and West Bank Arabs think the Jews are raping Muslims on the Temple Mount or murdering bus drivers, even though these are imaginary crimes?
So long as mainstream media outlets ignore the truth about Palestinian politics and terror, it is also no surprise that their coverage of the conflict tells us more about their biases than anything happening on the ground.
Two Jewish seminary students attacked in East Jerusalem
Two Jewish seminary students were attacked and wounded in East Jerusalem Friday evening. The two were reportedly hit with stones, metal rods and nails near the Beit Orot seminary in Jerusalem's Mount of Olives, days after Palestinian terrorists opened fire in a Jerusalem synagogue and killed four rabbis and a Druze policeman.
An initial investigation revealed that the two were part of a group of seven Jewish students who were walking to the seminary when they came across a group of Palestinians from East Jerusalem. A scuffle broke out between the two sides until a Border Patrol force arrived at the scene and escorted the Jews back to the seminary.
Interior minister mulls revoking residency of ‘terror promoters’
Israel’s new interior minister, Gilad Erdan, said Saturday he was reviewing the possibility of revoking the Israeli residencies of East Jerusalem Arabs who support terror.
Earlier this month, Erdan, a member of governing party Likud, replaced fellow party member Gideon Sa’ar, who announced his departure from political life in September.
“I have instructed the staff at the Interior Ministry to assess and advise me on how my authority may be widened…to nullify the permanent residency and accompanying social rights of East Jerusalem Arabs who promote terror and incite violence,” Erdan said at a conference in Ness Ziona.
Merkel against unilaterally recognizing Palestine as a state
Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday rejected the idea of Germany recognising Palestine as a state unilaterally, saying the Palestinians and Israel could solve their long-running conflict only through negotiations.
The aim should be that both sides agree on a two-state solution - Israel and a future Palestine - co-existing side by side, Merkel told a news conference in Berlin after meeting Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel.
"Therefore from our point of view, an unilateral recognition of the Palestinian state would not move us forward on the way to a two-state solution," the conservative chancellor said.
Abbas in Fiery Speech: We Will Stay in Our Country
Palestinian Authority (PA) Chairman Mahmoud Abbas on Friday delivered a fiery speech in Ramallah, in which he reiterated his plan to ask the UN to set a deadline for Israel to “end the occupation”.
At the same time, Abbas said he was against violence and condemned recent terrorist attacks against Israelis.
“We are being shut down from all directions, we are forbidden to use sixty percent of the West Bank (Judea and Samaria -ed.)," Abbas claimed in his speech, according to Channel 2 News.
"We will not go, we will stay in our country," he declared, adding, "I'm going to ask the UN to set a deadline for the occupation, to say when it ends."
Alongside his harsh criticism of Israel's policies, Abbas condemned the recent wave of terrorist attacks, saying, "We are opposed to murder, we seek peace and want security. We do not want the death of innocent people on either side.”
Abbas and his aides have more than once announced that they intend to turn to the Security Council with a resolution setting a deadline for Israel to “end the occupation”, a unilateral move that is in violation of the Oslo Accords.
HRW: Israel's demolition of Palestinian terrorists' homes is 'war crime'
Human Rights Watch on Saturday blasted Israel's policy of demolishing the homes of suspected Palestinian terrorists as "collective punishment" and a "war crime" and called for its immediate end.
The organization called for an immediate moratorium on home demolitions, saying the action leaves the families of suspected terrorists in Palestinian territories homeless, and "unlawfully punishes people not accused of any wrongdoing."
“Punitive home demolitions are blatantly unlawful,” said HRW deputy Middle East and North Africa director Joe Stork. “Israel should prosecute, convict, and punish criminals, not carry out vengeful destruction that harms entire families."
Lebanon says it arrested ‘Israeli collaborator’
The Lebanese army reportedly arrested a man who allegedly collaborated with Israeli secret agents operating in the country, security officials in Beirut said Saturday.
According to Saudi daily newspaper Okaz, the man, dubbed by Lebanese officials as F. Yassin, held covert meetings with Israeli spies in a tourist resort which he owned in the country’s south.
The south Lebanon region is a major stronghold of Shiite terrorist group Hezbollah, and many of the organization’s primary bases are located in the area.
The Saudi daily further reported that the suspect is believed to possess key information regarding the whereabouts and undercover operations of Israeli agents in Lebanon, especially in the country’s south.
‘Hezbollah has Iranian-made missiles that can reach Dimona’
Iran has supplied Lebanese terror group and Iranian proxy Hezbollah with missiles “that can reach Dimona,” according to a new report in the semi-official Fars news agency.
The report said the Iranian Revolutionary Guards delivered a new class of missiles, “Fateh,” with ranges of 250-350 kilometers and which can fit a 500kg warhead.
Iranian Revolutionary Guards Brigadier-General Sayed Majid Moussavi told the news agency that the new missiles will allow Hezbollah to hit any place in Israel, “including targets in the south on the occupied terriroty.”
“Dimona is an easy target,” he was quoted as saying.
Khaled Abu Toameh: Abbas accuses Israel of using wild boars against Palestinians
Abbas’s allegation was made during a speech he delivered at a pro-Palestinian conference in Ramallah on Friday night.
The charge about the wild boars did not appear in reports published in the official PA media.
This was not the first time that the PA accused Israel of releasing wild boars to destroy agricultural fields in the West Bank. In the past, the PA claimed that the IDF and settlers were bringing wild boars to Palestinian-owned lands in order to cause damage to their produces and intimidate farmers.
“Every night, they (Israelis) release wild boars against us,” Abbas was quoted as saying in his speech. “Why are they doing this to us?”
He also accused Israel of using false pretexts to prevent Palestinians from entering their lands in the West Bank.
Palestinian Authority accuses Hamas of plotting against it from Turkish headquarters
Israel and Egypt have Hamas pinned inside Gaza after destroying hundreds of tunnels leading out of the Palestinian enclave, but the terrorist group is coordinating its efforts in the West Bank with logistical help from a command center more than 500 miles away in Turkey, according to Palestinian Authority officials.
The PA and the Jewish State are mutually convenient bedfellows in their opposition to Hamas, which has conducted a campaign of terror against Israel and seeks to destabilize the West Bank. While the PA officially remains Hamas' so-called "governing partner" in the Palestinian territories, new accusations that Hamas' efforts are guided by its Turkey-based commander Salah al-Aruri have exposed the growing and violent rift between the two groups.
Now, the PA has gone on record as accusing al-Aruri of planning multiple attacks that have been foiled recently by Israel, resulting in the arrest of dozens of Hamas operatives in the West Bank. Those arrests, likely coordinated with PA security services who themselves allegedly foiled a planned coup by Hamas in the West Bank this summer, may have included the cell which, it was revealed on Thursday, had been planning to assassinate Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman in August in an RPG missile attack.
UN to begin funneling building materials to Gaza residents
Residents of the Gaza Strip whose homes were damaged during this summer’s war between Israel and Hamas will be given access to building materials to repair them as of next week, the UN announced Friday night. Financial assistance will also be offered to home owners for the repairs.
According to a statement by UN Middle East peace process coordinator Robert Serry, the action coordinated between Israel, the UN and Palestinian officials will aid some 25,000 home owners.
Addressing Israeli concern that building materials intended for home reconstruction will be used by terror groups to rebuild tunnels and other terror infrastructure, the UN stressed that “materials procured under the mechanism may only be used for their intended purpose… the United Nations will undertake spot checks to monitor compliance.”
Palestine House board member, Monira Kitmitto, shut down her Facebook page after depicting terrorist murderers as “role models”
Monira Kitmitto, Palestine House board member and a a member of the Coalition Against Israeli Apartheid (CAIA), shut down (November 20, 2014) her Facebook page.
Two days earlier Kitmitto praised on her Facebook page the Palestinian terrorists who carried out the Jerusalem Massacre (November 18, 2014) murdering with a handgun, a meat cleaver and a knife 4 rabbis and a policeman, and injuring others including an Israeli Canadian, Howie Rothman, who was seriously wounded after being struck in his head and neck with a cleaver. Kitmitto said that the attack reflected “a spirit of manhood in the air and heroism on the ground” and called the murderers “role models and an example [for others].”
In her last post before suspending her Facebook page, Kitmitto uploaded a cartoon, drawn by the cartoonist and Hamas member Umayya Juha, featuring a stereotype Jew trying in vain to protect himself from being killed by (Palestinians using) an ax, a knife and an AK-47 rifle or being run over by a car. Kitmitto added a line of her own saying (translated from Arabic): "All land under your feet is hell."
Cornell Pro-Israel students taunted: “F**k You Zionist scums”
On November 19, 2014, Cornell Students for Justice in Palestine organized a mock Israeli checkpoint at Ho Plaza, a central student gathering point on campus between the Cornell Bookstore and Willard Straight Hall, where many student activities are centered.
Casey Breznick, Editor in Chief of the Cornell Review and an author at Legal Insurrection, has the story at the Cornell Review Blog of a confrontation that took place when a group of pro-Israel students counter-protested holding Israeli flags and signs calling for peace.
Here is video we put together based on footage provided to us by multiple student sources, showing yang-stevens pulling the same ploy she pulled on me last April, claiming that the student had his camera in her face (which he denies both in the video and also in communications with me), as yang-stevens taunted the pro-Israel student to hit her. As another person shouted out “F*ck you Zionist scums”:
Cornell Pro-Israel Students Taunted


Anti-Israel Activist Intimidation at Cornell


Muslim beauty queen: Free Palestine
Indonesia – A Tunisian woman called for a free Palestine as she won a pageant exclusively for Muslims in Indonesia Friday, seen as a riposte to Western beauty contests.
Eighteen finalists, who include a doctor and a computer scientist, paraded in glittering dresses against the backdrop of world-renowned ancient temples for the contest in the world’s most populous Muslim-majority country.
Computer scientist Fatma Ben Guefrache was announced the winner and received a prize which includes a gold watch, a gold dinar, and mini pilgrimage to Mecca.
“May almighty Allah help me in this mission, and free Palestine, please, please, free Palestine and the Syrian people,” the tearful 25-year-old woman said.
The 18 finalists were required to wear the Muslim headscarf and judged not only on their appearance, but also on how well they recite verses from the Koran and their views on Islam in the modern world.
Hamas lawyer Stanley Cohen gets 18 months in prison on tax charges
Cohen pleaded guilty to tax charges relating to his elaborate use of cash transactions to conceal income and his failure to file income tax returns for several years.
The evidence was overwhelming, to put it mildly. When Cohen entered his plea last April, he admitted that the government could prove its case.
Today, Cohen was sentenced in federal court in Syracuse, NY, to 18-months in prison as set forth in his plea deal.
Third UCLA Donor Pledges to Pull Funds Over BDS
Entrepreneur and political leader Gary Aminoff donates to the UCLA Foundation every year. He is proud to call himself an alumnus of the university. Aminoff, however, was outraged to have received notice of the student council at UCLA passing a boycott, divestment, and sanctions resolution against Israel by an 8-2 margin. BDS, the political agenda of Students for Justice in Palestine, is geared towards the destruction of Israel’s economy.
Within 24 hours of the university’s student government vote on the resolution, Aminoff released a letter to the university stating his utter disapproval of last night’s outcome and threatening to withhold all future contributions to the university should the Regents support it. He promises to urge his peers to do the same.
Youtube User Combines Copyright Infringement and Anti-Israel Vandalism
This is getting weird. Really weird.
It’s one thing to take copyrighted material – in this case a detective series produced by the British Broadcasting Company – and post it on Youtube.
It’s another thing altogether to vandalize that video by pasting anti-Israel propaganda into the video so that you can foist your ideas on unsuspecting viewers.
But that is what one Youtube user, who goes by the moniker “Justice4All,” has done. He has posted a number of episodes of the British television show “Midsomer Murders” on Youtube and posted propaganda for the Palestinian Solidarity Campaign.
Jodi Rudoren and the Key Fallacy That Explains Media Ignorance
And in addition to the anti-intellectualism, Rudoren says that her detractors are not “rooted in the values of mainstream journalism.” This is provably false. In fact, much of the criticism of her that prompted this exchange was based precisely in her own failure to adhere to basic journalistic ethics. I noted, for example, that she made statements about vandalism against mosques in Israel without providing numbers or even a citation. It turned out not to be true; she is just making up inflammatory “facts.” But in order to know that, you have to do the journalism that Rudoren refuses to do. You have to be her fact checker, in other words.
The ignorance of reporters about the subjects they cover is an ongoing problem, and it’s especially egregious when the subject turns to religion. Yet often when reporters take their base of knowledge of a subject and arrogantly assume it’s all they’ll ever need to know, they at least know something–anything, even basic information–about the issue. That’s not the case with Rudoren. Her mistakes include those that are disproved by merely looking at a map, for instance.
Somewhere along the line, liberal reporters and editors decided that the greater the depth and breadth of criticism of their work, the better they assumed it to be. This attitude has produced the work of Jodi Rudoren as its inevitable consequence. And it’s how, seemingly against all odds, coverage of Israel is still getting worse. The hope is that Rudoren represents the media hitting bottom, but I fear we’re not there yet.
BBC coverage of Har Nof terror attack: Sommerville drops the ball
Sommerville fails to correct the misleading impression given to viewers by Abbas’ words by informing them that there have not been any “attacks against Al Aqsa Compound”.
It is the BBC’s job to enhance audience understanding of international affairs by means of accurate and impartial reporting. The corporation cannot achieve that aim if its correspondents simply regurgitate Palestinian propaganda whilst making no effort to inform audiences of the facts behind that deliberate misinformation.
Globe and Mail Lionizes Yasser Arafat on Remembrance Day
The Globe failed to tell its readers that Arafat was responsible for the murder of almost 1,000 Israelis and the maiming of many thousands more. Arafat incited Palestinians to commit terror against Israelis via its official PA media, its educational infrastructure, and in public pronouncements. Instead of informing Canadians of Arafat’s dark legacy and his bloodstained career of terror, Arafat was whitewashed and his terror resume ignored.
It was an insult to the memory of these Israelis, and to the many Canadians who passed while serving our country, to remember Arafat on Remembrance Day in a “Moment in Time” report prominently featured on the 2nd page of the Globe.
Giving credence to conspiracy theories alleging Arafat was “poisoned” by Israel was deeply regrettable. Absent from this report, Arafat’s dark legacy where he ruled supreme as a tyrannical despot and a kleptocrat. His dubious resume includes innovating hostage-taking, air-plane hijacking, school massacres, and suicide attacks. Yet beyond the terrorism, extortion, embezzlement, incitement and intimidation lies Arafat’s most unfortunate ongoing impact: The inculcation of murderous values in a Palestinian populace, who were educated under Arafat’s direction to continue the fight of “jihad” against Israel, rather than compromise to end the decades-long conflict. These values help explain how six Israelis were murdered in terror attacks just this month alone.
Lest we forget, Arafat was the godfather of modern terror.
CBC Issues Tepid Statement of Regret for Disgraceful Headline of Jerusalem Terror Attack
On November 18, we called on the CBC to apologize for its disgraceful headline that day which deemed it more newsworthy to focus on the fatal shooting of 2 unidentified individuals by Jerusalem police, rather than the actions of Palestinian terrorists or identities of the Israeli Jewish victims and for CBC’s using the word “apparent” in its headline to convey that this might not have even been an act of terror.
As we noted in our alert, CBC owed it to Canadians to fully explain how such a disgraceful and myopic headline got incorporated in their news coverage and disseminated wide and far. We called on CBC to apologize for its journalistic shortcomings and explain in detail specific actions it will take to ensure that an incident like this will never happen again.
By way of a November 19 editorial blog post on the CBC’s website written by Brodie Fenlon, Managing Editor of CBCNews.ca, CBC acknowledged their headline’s shortcomings by saying “We agree that the initial headline should have better conveyed the true essence of the story – and that story was the attack on the synagogue.”
Rift Between Hezbollah and Assad Continues to Grow
Arab media sources are reporting on tensions between Hezbollah and Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, the two key allies of Iran in the Middle East.
Sources close to Hezbollah admitted that the organization is suffering from “difficult days” in its war in Syria against local opposition groups attempting to overthrow Assad. According to the Erem-News website, Hezbollah wants to take over the Al-Qalamoun district of the Rif Dimashq governorate in Syria. However, a rift formed when the Assad regime refused to help Hezbollah in this effort, preferring to focus on other areas. Without regime support, Hezbollah suffered heavy losses in Al-Qalamoun, and many of its fighters have been killed there in recent weeks. This is the apparent reason behind the recent tensions between the two sides.
In addition, Iran has decided to reduce its aid to Hezbollah by 25%, a move that forced the Shiite terrorist organization to withdraw from some areas of fighting in Syria due to funding problems.
The Saudi newspaper al-Youm reported recently that following Hezbollah losses in the Syrian arena and near the Lebanese-Syrian border, there are tensions and divisions even inside the organization. Some of the organization’s combatants threatened to neither fight for the organization nor return to their bases.
With three days left on clock, 'significant gaps' still remain in Iran nuclear talks
US Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif are discussing new ideas aimed at breaking the deadlock in nuclear talks between Tehran and six world powers, sources close to the talks said on Friday.
The sources, who spoke to Reuters on condition of anonymity, said the top Iranian and US diplomats were preparing ideas that could be shown to both countries' capitals.
"Discussions are continuing," said a senior US official, who declined to discuss details about the negotiations in Vienna.
One source said it was too early to say whether this latest joint effort indicated an actual narrowing of the wide differences between Iran and the six powers.
Former CIA Director: Iran is “Too Close to a Nuclear Weapon”
In a House subcommittee hearing yesterday, former Director of National Intelligence Gen. Michael Hayden said that Iran and its possible acquisition of nuclear weapons was one of the things that “keep me awake at night”.
In his prepared remarks Hayden made four observations about Iran and its nuclear program, including that “Iran is a difficult intelligence target” because its decision-making process is “opaque.” His second observation noted that “our knowledge of the Iranian nuclear program is incomplete,” and he decried Iran’s stonewalling of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) from possible nuclear weapons sites. He also observed that “at a minimum Iran is working very hard to keep its nuclear weapons option available,” given its “investment in time, energy, commerce and national prestige that Iran has been willing to make.”
Hayden’s final observation was that “Iran is already too close to a nuclear weapon,” and that therefore the goal of the P5+1 “must be to roll back the Iranian program, not freeze it in place.”
Soccer Club Owner Excuses Anti-Semitic Remarks With ‘Some of my Best Friends Are Jews’ Line
In later interview with broadcaster Sky News, Whelan deepened the insult by saying, “I would never insult a Jewish person. I have got hundreds and hundreds of Jewish friends. I’ve got loads of Chinese friends and I would never, ever insult the Chinese.” Added Whelan: “All I was trying to say was that Jewish people are very similar to the English people in the desire to work hard and get money.”
Mark Gardner, Communications Director of the Community Security Trust (CST) which deals with security for the UK Jewish community, observed on the organization’s blog that Whelan’s “quick apology appears sincere, but reinforces his claim not to understand the offense: because even here, his reference to Jews as ‘a great race of people’ will still leave many people feeling that he simply doesn’t get how to talk about these issues in the modern day.”
Yemen minister dedicates award to country’s Jews
Yemen’s minister of culture is donating an international human rights prize to the country’s tiny and persecuted Jewish minority.
Arwa Othman, awarded the Alison Des Forges Award by Human Rights Watch in September, called for “tolerance” in her speech and announced she was giving her award to “brothers and friends from the Jewish community,” according to the Associated Press.
Othman made the announcement at a celebration Thursday in the capital city of Sanaa, where roughly half of the country’s Jewish population — numbering fewer than 90 in total — live in a guarded compound.
Arwa, a writer and former head of Yemen’s House of Folklore who was only appointed to her cabinet post last Friday, was praised by Human Rights Watch for her advocacy for civil rights in the country’s constitutional negotiations and her efforts to end child marriage. According to the AP, her advocacy for civil rights and the Jewish population has spurred a backlash by Yemen’s hardline Salafi Muslims.
New museum reflects growing Polish interest in all things Jewish
Crowds have been streaming to Warsaw’s POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews since its core exhibition opened Oct. 28 at a high-profile ceremony led by the presidents of Poland and Israel.
Thousands of visitors have toured the museum’s eight interactive galleries that tell the 1,000-year story of Jewish life in Poland and have flocked to events like the recent Warsaw Jewish Film Festival, some of whose screenings took place at the museum. Some 7,000 people visited the museum on a single Monday when admission was free.
But POLIN is not the only Jewish-related museum in Poland to win recent recognition. At the end of October the Polish version of TripAdvisor listed the much more modest Galicia Jewish Museum in Krakow as one of Poland’s 2014 top 10 museums. The Holocaust memorial museums at the former Nazi camps at Auschwitz and Majdanek, as well as the Auschwitz Jewish Center — a museum, study and prayer center in Oswiecim — also made the roster.
The TripAdvisor list is based on user reviews and is by no means a scientific study. But it reflects the widespread interest in Jewish heritage, culture and history that has been growing in Poland since before the fall of communism. In many ways, POLIN is the high-profile tip of a very big iceberg.
Israeli Priest Gabriel Nadaf Confident of Greater Christian Recruitment Into IDF (INTERVIEW)
“I will make a prediction,” Father Gabriel Nadaf told me with a smile. “Next year, in 2015, there will be 400 Christian recruits into the IDF.”
Father Nadaf, a Greek Orthodox priest from the town of Yafia, in the north of Israel, has spent the last two years urging Israel’s Christian community to join the Israeli military, based on his conviction that the Jewish state is the only country in the Middle East where Christians can practice their faith free from persecution. The numbers would appear to bear him out; in marked contrast to the other states in the region, where Christian populations have declined dramatically because of oppression and political conflict, the size of the community in Israel has more than quadrupled since independence in 1948, from 34,000 to 158,000 in 2012.


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