Saturday, December 12, 2015

  • Saturday, December 12, 2015
From Ian:

Intellectual State of Emergency
The Occupied Territories of Progressive Thought
Who are today's racists?
A "March for Dignity" recently assembled outraged "anti-racists," who shouted insults in the name of universal love.
It was in the name of anti-racism that the progressives chanted "death to Jews" at the UN's Durban conference against racism in 2001.
Every week, the Place de la République has seen the roaring processions of the Sheikh Yassin Collective, inciting the hatred of Jews. Did anyone even care?
These "progressives" were strangely silent while a quarter of a million people were killed in Syria, while Yazidi women were sold into slavery, or when a new Caliph ordered the massacre of thousands in the name of Allah, or the mutilation and murder of Christians who refused to convert. Is that kind of behavior nothing more than bad taste?
Today the new virus of prejudice has two faces: brandishing a knife and trying to appear as innocent as a lamb.
The suffering of the Arabs, of the Palestinians and of the suburban youth is real, but will be alleviated only if there is first a critical examination of the delusional views on what is causing it. Neither the Jews nor Israel are at the root of this suffering.
Ben-Dror Yemini: The penny finally drops for John Kerry
John Kerry has been spewing out quite a bit of nonsense over the past two years. This column has not let him off easy. But his latest statement, for a change, belongs to a different department. He claimed Israel must decide whether it was a Jewish state, or a binational state. About 70 percent of Israelis prefer a Jewish state. It includes at least a third of Likud voters. This is the national and Zionist interest, regardless of the Palestinian position, and Israel should beware of perpetuating the existing situation and slipping into becoming a binational state only because of Palestinian intransigence.
Kerry's critics should also take note: The very use of the words "Jewish state" is a testament to the fact the speaker, even if he can be annoying at times, is a friend of Israel. Israel's haters on campuses, not just in the US, treat anyone who supports this basic concept as a colonial leper and a borderline fascist. And the fact that Kerry supports the Jewish state, and objects to Israel slipping into becoming a binational state, is commendable.
After Kerry expressed his vision of a Jewish state, Israel's embassies all over the world received a new position paper from the Foreign Ministry about the settlements. According to international law, the new document stipulates, the settlements are legal. Let's assume every word there is true. And let's assume Jews are allowed to settle in the very heart of Hebron and in upper Nablus. So what? Will this "legality" prevent the catastrophe of a binational state? And what exactly does it mean? After all, if we are talking about just one entity, then why is it that only Jews are allowed to settle in the midst of the Arab population? Arabs are also allowed to settle in the midst of the Jewish population.
How Not to Promote Coexistence
It is no secret that neither Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, nor the members of his government and the political parties that make up his coalition, are particularly popular with either the U.S. government or the American media. The same can be said for much of the American Jewish community that tends to see Netanyahu’s views on the peace process — which represent the consensus of the Israeli electorate — as being at odds with the political liberalism that most of them espouse. But there is one member of the Knesset, who is pretty popular in the United States. Ayman Odeh, the head of the Joint List of Arab political parties in Israel’s parliament, received a hero’s welcome in the media this week when he arrived for a visit to the United States.
The New York Times embraced Odeh as a voice for “a more inclusive Israeli democracy” as well as “the creation of a Palestinian state.” But Odeh was embraced for more than positions that are odds with those of Netanyahu. Odeh was treated as a tribune for a downtrodden Israeli Arab minority that is finally making its voice heard in the Jewish state. He was also taken at face value when he claimed the fact that his alliance gained a piddling 10,000 Jewish votes (out of 4.2 million that were cast in March) as proof that “Arabs and Jews refuse to be enemies.”
But an incident involving a meeting of Jewish organizational leaders to which he was invited told us more about Odeh’s real agenda and the charges that were made against Netanyahu for racism earlier this year than the platitudes he spun for the Times. Though Jewish groups have been as eager to celebrate Odeh and the Joint List as proof of the reality of Israeli democracy and have exhibited no reluctance to hear his views on the issues, he had some interesting conditions for such meetings. He refused to even set foot in the offices of groups that are dedicated to supporting Israel’s existence and helping Jews immigrate there.
That’s what happened when he was invited to a meeting of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. Rather than seize the opportunity to influence the umbrella group that, along with AIPAC, represents those organizations concerned with Israel, Odeh said he wouldn’t go into their offices since doing so would compromise his integrity and principles.



Top PLO official ties Israel’s actions to rise of Islamic State
Islamic State will assume the moral leadership of the Arab world if Israel does not stop crushing Palestinians’ hopes of statehood, a senior official in the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) said Friday.
Saeb Erekat, the secretary-general of the PLO, told a Rome conference on Mediterranean security that the radical jihadism of Islamic State could only be defeated long-term through a resolution of the Palestinian question and the establishment of democracy in Arab countries.
“Ever since the beginning of Islam there have been people and organizations seeking to use the religion for their own ends. Daesh is number 803,” he said, referring to the jihadist group by an Arabic term.
“You are not going to defeat Daesh with bullets, warplanes and so on.”
WATCH: Footage released of Wednesday's stabbing attack near Hebron
Dramatic footage was released on Saturday evening of a stabbing attack that took place Wednesday near Beit Hadassah, a building that houses Jewish families in the West Bank city of Hebron.
The apparent security footage shows the terrorist, wearing a yellow vest, approaching an IDF soldier and attacking him with a knife.
The two are seen wrestling to the ground before gunshots are heard and the attacker collapses.
During the stabbing attack, the Palestinian terrorist wounded an IDF soldier and a civilian.
One of the victims was moderately wounded and the other was suffering from light injuries.
Sweden’s Disgusting Hypocrisy on Israel
Swedish top politicians are on the wrong kind of roll right now, delivering a grotesque kind of theatrics that are at times sinister, at times very entertaining to watch from the outside, but most of all plainly embarrassing to many Swedes, who are increasingly shaking their heads at a leadership gone very awry. It should be added that Swedes are a stoic and extremely consensus-seeking lot who will go to great lengths before uttering any kind of dissent, but even they seem to be fed up with a leadership that is so inept, as is evident from the soaring support that the Sweden Democrats have been getting recently.
A YouGov poll from mid-September showed that the anti-immigration party holds 27.3% of voter support, making it the biggest political party in Sweden. In comparison, Swedish Social Democratic Party is trailing behind at 21.3%. Both Prime Minister Stefan Lofven and his foreign minister, Margot Wallstrom, are from the Social Democratic Party.
Lofven and Wallstrom have drawn attention recently to themselves with their insane comments about terrorism against Israelis. First up was the foreign minister, who on Friday accused Israel of conducting “extrajudicial executions” while defending itself against Palestinians committing terror attacks. Israel slammed these remarks with the Foreign Ministry responding that her statement was “delusional, rude and detached from reality. The foreign minister is suggesting the citizens of Israel simply present their necks to the killers seeking to stab them with knives. The citizens of Israel and its security forces have the right to defend themselves. In Israel, every person who commits a crime is brought in front of a judge, including terrorists. The citizens of Israel have to deal with terrorism that receives support from irresponsible and false statements like that.”
The Swedish Foreign Ministry then issued a meaningless statement on Saturday morning, clarifying that “the foreign minister did not say that Israel conducts ‘extrajudicial executions.’ The foreign minister made a general statement about international law and the right to self-defense and the importance of proportionality and distinction. What she stated applies to all parties.”
That statement is particularly meaningless, because Wallstrom has demonstrated the particulars of her ignorance of international law and the principle of proportionality by falsely implying that the latter has to do with how many casualties there are on each side.

Islamic State Manifesto Details Paris Attacks, Describes Expansion Plans
The terrorists behind last month’s Paris attacks modeled their assault on tactics developed by Al-Qaida in Iraq, now the Islamic State (ISIS), during the Iraq War, according to a new Islamic State manifesto, “Black Flags From the Islamic State.”
Originally disclosed last week by the Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT), the 130-page ebook details the extensive planning that went into the Paris attacks and describes how plotters evaded detection by Western intelligence. Other aspects of the manifesto detail the history of the Islamic State’s emergence from Al-Qaida, its plans for the future, and how it operates.
The Paris attacks, which left 130 people dead, were enabled by at least 200 operatives in undisclosed locations who worked for two months, the ebook claims. Some lived near the Belgian-German border and in other European countries. Salah AbdelSalam, the surviving attacker, escaped by using a route through Eastern Europe and Turkey to Islamic State territory that was established in advance in case the plot was thwarted, “Black Flags From the Islamic State” says.
Two Syrians arrested in Geneva after traces of explosives found, city remains on high alert
Two Syrian nationals were arrested in Geneva on Friday and traces of explosives were found in their car, the local newspaper Tribune de Geneve and Swiss television said.
The newspaper gave no details on the identity of the two men or the circumstances of their arrest. It said it was unclear whether the arrests were linked to a heightened security alert Geneva authorities had declared on Thursday. It remained in effect at level 3 on a scale of 5.
"Two men of Syrian origin were arrested in Geneva on Friday," Swiss television said on its nightly news broadcast. "Traces of explosives were found in their car."
Geneva officials were not immediately available to comment, but a source close to the case told Reuters that two men had been arrested, without giving any details.
Swiss media and Reuters have reported that authorities are looking for four men believed to have been in Geneva this week. A van with Belgian plates and two men entered Switzerland from France via the Jura mountains on Tuesday and went back to France after three few hours, Swiss television said.
Thousands Sign Petitions Calling for Armed Guards at UK Jewish Gathering Places
Thousands in the UK had signed a petition by Friday calling for armed police guards outside Jewish institutions and gathering places in Great Britain.
The petition concluded that there is a serious risk of mass casualties due to terrorism facing Jewish sites across the UK. Governments in mainland European countries such as France, Belgium and others have already deployed armed guards to protect synagogues and community centers.
Given the current threats facing British Jews concerning terrorism, the British government should do the same, the petitioners, led by Moses Hoffman, argued.
“It is impossible for a policeman or security guard without a weapon to protect synagogues, schools and other institutions from terrorists who arm [sic] guns and knives,” said the petition, which had a June 2016 deadline to reach 10,000 signatures for a government response or 100,000 signatures for parliamentary consideration. It had reached 5,126 signatures as of publishing.
Labour Leader's Ally Confirms Support for Hamas and Hezbollah
Video footage has emerged of John Rees, a co-founder of the Stop the War Coalition and an long-standing ally of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, declaring his support for terrorist groups Hamas and Hezbollah.
Rees declared the two proscribed organisations, which aim to wipe Israel from the map, as “a legitimate part of our movement.”
In a video filmed in 2009, Mr Rees is seen telling activists at the “Meet The Resistance” conference, held at a Quakers Friends House: “It’s also been our policy that the resistance is a legitimate part of the movement.
“They are part of the movement in the Middle East, they are the central part of the movement in the middle east. And it’s not surprising that if you are under military occupation one of the forms of resistance is a military resistance.
“That’s what happens. It’s what happened in France, it’s what happened in Italy in the Second World War, it’s would have happened in this country had it been invaded in the second world war.”
He continued: “I personally am a supporter of the resistance, but even if I weren’t I hope that I’d be open minded enough to listen to what they have to say, especially if I came from a country where the government and the media are working 24/7 to dissuade you from even listening to what they have to say.”
Jeremy Corbyn helped secure bail for conman stealing £1million from elderly to FUND ISIS
The Labour leader penned the letter in May calling on magistrates to grant bail to 23-year-old Mohamed Dahir as he had “roots in the area” and was unlikely to abscond.
Beleaguered Mr Corbyn, who has been rocked by a series of controversies since becoming party leader, intervened on behalf of Dahir who comes from his Islington North constituency.
During that hearing the court was told that Dahir was part of a gang using elderly people’s cash as a “bank of terror” to pay for would-be jihadists to travel from the UK to fight alongside Islamic State terrorists in Syria and Iraq.
Magistrates granted bail to Dahir and he was able to walk out of court pending the trial.
However, Dahir has now been convicted of posing as a police officer to steal more than £600,000 from elderly people with an average age of 83 as part a £1million phone scam.
Stop the War on the defensive
Stop the War is currently fighting on two fronts: indignantly asserting that it is the victim of smears and tittle tattle, while busily taking down the evidence that it is no such thing. Here is a reminder of its latest manoeuvres, many of them already discussed below the line here of course.
The starting point was its widely discussed and swift removal of the infamous ‘reaping the whirlwind’ post – now even the link to the cached version comes up with a 404 message.
Then of course there was the article which compared Daesh to the International Brigades. Though in some ways its claim that Isis’ jihad ‘takes the form of solidarity with oppressed Muslims’ was still more egregious, given its countless Muslim victims.
And now they have been tidying up their back catalogue too, seeking to get rid of still more evidence of their dodgy worldview. Their ability to zoom in so quickly on all the most offensive pieces suggests they were well aware of the earlier reactions and objections but chose to ignore them until put under the spotlight.
Finland Charges Two Refugees With Terror Murder Of 11
Finland charged two 23-year-old Iraqi refugees Friday morning with a terror-related murder of 11 people, after they were allegedly spotted in an Islamic State (ISIS) execution video from 2014.
The execution video shows victims lying on the ground getting shot one by one by unmasked shooters. The men were detained Thursday and were charged Friday morning based on a probable cause. They both plead not guilty.
The executions were part of the June 2014 ISIS Camp Speicher massacre of unarmed Iraqi air force cadets near Tikrit, which is believed to have taken more than 1,000 lives.
They arrived in Finland as refugees in September. Detective Jari Räty declined to comment on whether or not they had filed asylum applications.
Syrians Aren't Like Holocaust Victims, They Think the Holocaust was a Good Thing
The most cynical meme of the already cynical debate about Syrian Muslim migrants is the claim that they're just like Jews during the Holocaust. Except that nobody is seeking to wipe out Sunni Muslims. Sunni Muslim terror groups however are trying to exterminate Christians and Yazidis.
Despite that, Obama applied his own UNHCR refugee religious test and only took in 1 Syrian Yazidi, 53 Christians and a few thousand Sunni Muslims.
Oh and there's one more problem with the false analogy. Syrians think the Holocaust was awesome and the Jews had it coming.
Syrian children are also taught that Jews are evil and a false people and that their religion does not make them a nation. Syrian textbooks praise the Holocaust as a positive event.
That last part comes from the "Nationalist Socialist Education Textbook". Might have something to do with the fact that the dominant Syrian political movements on both sides, Baathists, SSNP and the Muslim Brotherhood, were heavily influenced by Nazism. The SSNP stands for Syrian Social Nationalist Party. Its logo is pretty much a swastika.
ISIS seizes UNESCO heritage site of Sabratha in Libya
Islamic State militants have seized control of the Libyan town of Sabratha, a UNESCO world heritage site and home to one of the world's best-preserved Roman amphitheaters, The Telegraph reported on Friday.
Militants moved into the center of town on Thursday, traveling in a caravan of Toyota pickup trucks. Locals initially believed the terror group was engaging in a retaliatory raid, after two of their men were arrest nearby, however the militants set up checkpoints around the town and claimed the town as their own, said The Telegraph.
Sabratha is located 50 miles from the Libyan capital of Tripoli, which is currently facing threats of ISIS infiltration on both its eastern and western fronts.
Destruction of the Sabratha ruins would be an incredible disaster, rivaling or surpassing the devastation caused by the destruction of Palmyra in Syria.
Islamic State presents its version of the apocalypse
As is now the norm with the group’s videos, the clip is slick and professionally produced. It shows jihadists making final preparations for battle alternating with shots of “Rome” – a symbolic representation of the powerhouse of Christianity — in images of St Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican and the ruins of the Roman Colosseum. Tanks supposed to be advancing to the Italian capital are seen flying IS flags as they leave tracks in the desert.
Curiously, the end of times-obsessed terror organization’s clip shows the apocalypse not as it is described in the writings of Islam, but rather more in keeping with western, Christian fantasies.
At one point, the video shows flags of some 60 countries with which Islamic State sees itself as being at war, among them Britain, France, Australia and the US. Other sections of the video depict fighters wearing suicide vests or marching toward Europe.
Coloring book highlights brutality of Islamic State
An American company has produced a coloring book for adults that displays the brutality of the Islamic State, and is “designed to help citizens understand the real truth” about the jihadist movement.
Really Big Coloring Books, based in Missouri, says the coloring book aims “to educate and teach youth and adults about Radical Islam.”
The images inside the book, which costs $7.99, include grisly drawings of beheadings and mutilations by the group. They appear alongside scenes of imagined attacks on Sydney, Paris and New York that show the destruction of world-famous landmarks such as the Eiffel Tower, Statue of Liberty and Sydney Opera House.
“The book is the most benign way to view this topic in real life, excluding the hideous pictures on the internet,” says the blurb accompanying the online sale of the book. “Designed to help citizens understand the real truth — in black and white — comic book detail. With a glossary of terms.”
Saudi Prince Alwaleed spars with Trump on Twitter after calling him a 'disgrace to America'
Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal has called Donald Trump a disgrace to the United States following his call for a ban on Muslims entering the country, and demanded the Republican front-runner withdraw from the US presidential race.
Trump triggered an international uproar when he made his comments in response to last week's deadly shootings in California by two Muslims who authorities said were radicalized.
"You are a disgrace not only to the GOP but to all America," Prince Alwaleed, the chairman of Kingdom Holding, said on his Twitter account, addressing Trump and referring to the Republican Party.
Muslim Groups Demand Hillary Clinton Drop Wesley Clark for Remarks on Radical Islam
As Hillary Clinton slams Donald Trump’s rhetoric on Muslims, some liberal and Muslim advocacy organizations are calling on the Democratic presidential front-runner to distance herself from Wesley Clark, the retired general and longtime Clinton ally who made controversial remarks on segregating radicalized Muslims this summer.
Clark, the retired four star general and NATO commander who ran for president in 2004, has been a surrogate for Clinton’s 2016 campaign, most recently stumping on her behalf in Iowa last month. But in a letter the 11 advocacy groups plan to send to Clinton’s presidential campaign Thursday, they ask the former secretary of state to remove him from that role.
It's final: B'tselem loses Dutch prize
The Dutch Foreign Office announced Thursday that the winner of the 2015 Tulip human rights award is IRA-Mauritania, which operates to abolish slavery. The group will receive 100,000 euros.
The contest piqued Israeli interest a few months ago, when the ultra-leftist B'tselem appealed to its supporters to vote for it in a net poll-based run-off. Nationalist groups responded to the appeal by asking people to vote for B'tselem's competitors in the contest, and thus to deny it a victory.
The nationalist campaign succeeded in keeping B'tselem out of the group of organizations selected by the public to enter the finals, but a Dutch Foreign Ministry committee placed it in the final six anyway.
According to sources cited by the news website NRG, NGO-Monitor exchanged letters with the Dutch Foreign Ministry and informed it that B'tselem was already receiving 710,000 euros for 2014-2016, and that it is therefore "not clear why there is a need or justification for additional funding."
Phyllis Chesler: ‘Women’s studies’ is betraying women under Sharia law
Last week, the National Women’s Studies Association membership voted to boycott Israel. The resolution reads, in part:
“As feminist scholars, activists, teachers, and public intellectuals . . . we cannot overlook injustice and violence, including sexual and gender-based violence, perpetrated against
Palestinians and other Arabs in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, within Israel and in the Golan Heights, as well as the colonial displacement of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians during the 1948 Nakba.”
This vote is an utter betrayal of both reality and of women — especially women who live under Sharia law.
In 1970, I taught one of the first Women’s Studies courses in the country. What I had envisioned for the discipline has nothing to do with today’s anti-American, anti-Israel, post-colonial, faux-scholarly feminist academy.
Today, Women’s Studies has been Stalinized and feminist professors are less concerned with the “occupation” of women’s bodies world-wide than they are with the alleged occupation of a country that has never existed: “Palestine.”
Big-money Maccabee Task Force analyzing focus-group data, pushing collaboration, exec Brog says.
David Brog, the 49-year-old head of the new, Sheldon Adelson-funded, multimillion-dollar effort to combat BDS (the boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign against Israel), is well aware of the high — and no doubt unrealistic — expectations among pro-Israel advocates for him to succeed.
The BDS movement appears to be growing at a number of key college campuses and has become an increasingly important priority on the Jewish communal agenda. And with upwards of $50 million at his disposal for the Maccabee Task Force, launched earlier this year at an invitation-only Las Vegas summit, there is a sense among some Israel activists that Brog should be able to squash the opposition with a major offensive.
But throwing large sums of money at this complex problem is not enough. Neither is a frontal assault on Israel’s enemies on campus, since they are less the target of Brog’s efforts than the great majority of college students — Jewish and non-Jewish — who are either uninterested in or confused by the Israeli-Palestinian struggle.
“We need a very nuanced approach,” Brog told me in his first in-depth interview since becoming executive director of the task force four months ago. “Every campus is different, and the phrase ‘BDS’ is a catch-all for various efforts to demonize and delegitimize the State of Israel. Even if you could ban BDS activities on campus, the problem wouldn’t go away. The battle is bigger than BDS, so our effort has to be bigger.”
HuffPo Argument for Moral Indefensibility of Israel's "Occupation" is Indefensible
Ben-Meir rewrites history, making Israel the culpable party in the repeated disintegration of peace talks and moves toward a two-state solution. To Ben-Meir, it Israel’s move to “usurp Palestinian land,” and not the actions of the Palestinian leaders, that destroyed UN Resolution 242 and the Oslo Accords.
He states that Israel cannot claim to be acting in the moral interest even of its own, recognized citizens. Ben-Meir’s most illogical conclusion is that Israel’s security measures, which impinge on Palestinian rights, are “in fact undermining the security of the state, as is evident from the repeated bloody clashes.” With extraordinary and brazen victim-blaming, Ben-Meir surmises that the Israelis inability to stamp out Islamic terror is somehow its own fault.
The Israeli citizenry is then taken to task, with “the occupation” being named the cause of the Israeli people “hardening their hearts,” a nonsense statement crafted to appeal to the emotional response of Ben-Meir’s readership. Supposedly, Israelis are raising generations who know nothing of moral substance and character as they “continue to commit transgressions against the Palestinians without any sense of moral culpability.” The evidence that exists to the contrary is, of course, wholly ignored.
Many facts undermine Ben-Meir’s arguments, so he ignores them. But one central fact cannot be ignored: the threats to Israel and the violence perpetrated upon Israelis, as well as Jewish residents of pre-1948 Palestine, precede “the occupation”. How then is it possible that “the occupation” is the cause of these threats and violence?
Ashleigh Banfield Equates Radical Islamic Terrorists and Jewish Hooligans 30+ Years Ago
When Lord pointed out there are no Jews who are immigrating to the US intending to destroy America, Banfield differed by citing the actions of individuals associated with the marginal Jewish Defense League (JDL) several decades ago, claiming this was "the same thing" as current radical Islamic terrorism. Never mind that the Jewish Defense League is not currently classified as a terrorist group, that it has for years distanced itself from terrorism, that its members did not organize or commit any mass killings, and that the attacks she dredges up occurred more than three decades ago. To Banfield, this was an opportunity to denigrate Jews, regardless of its relevancy to the situation at hand.
Shouting over her guest, who tried to draw a distinction between the two, Banfield reiterated her accusation,"What are you talking about? There have been Jewish terrorist attacks. Should we therefore ask no Jews to apply for a visa?"
A clearly flummoxed Jeffrey Lord responded, "Are you really saying to me that there's an international Jewish conspiracy to take over the world?"
Once again, Banfield referred to the JDL's long ago actions, suggesting that the threat of Jewish terrorism in the U.S. is "the same thing" as the threat of radical Islamic terrorism, which seemed to have been the main point she had wanted to make all along.
Suburban Chicago public menorah vandalized
A six-foot-tall Hanukkah menorah in Evanston, Illinois has been vandalized.
The damage to the electric menorah is being investigated as a possible hate crime, Chicago’s CBS Local reported Thursday.
The menorah stands outside a facility run by the Chicago Mitzvah Campaign, a Chabad group that provides services to Jewish patients, visitors and staff members of nearby hospitals.
“The menorah’s lights were smashed and the switches were all ripped out,” Director Rabbi Aron Wolf said, according to CBS Local. “This wanton destruction of property is incredibly disheartening, and especially at this time of year, when we should be recognizing everyone’s right to celebrate holidays in a spirit of brotherhood and goodwill.”
NJ Jews upset as town removes menorah, keeps Christmas tree
Some residents of a Jewish enclave in New Jersey are upset that officials removed a menorah from the town square and kept the Christmas tree.
Lakewood has displayed a decorated tree and small menorah for decades.
Mayor Albert Akerman told the Asbury Park Press on Wednesday that this year Christian resident Vivian Knight sought to add a nativity scene to the holiday display in the Town Square. She threatened to sue if the request wasn’t approved.
“She wanted to make the distinction that the menorah is a religious symbol and the tree is not,” Akerman said.
Lakewood, which is approximately 70 miles from New York City, is home to one of the world’s largest yeshivas, Beth Medrash Govoha. Orthodox Jews, most of them haredi, make up more than half the township’s population
Israel will dominate IoT trend, predicts Google exec’s VC firm
Many people still aren’t exactly sure what the Internet of Things is all about.
But experts with their finger on the pulse of this massive connectivity trend predict that Israeli companies will take a leading role in building the IoT bridge between the digital and physical worlds to transform everyday lives and markets.
That’s the conclusion of a three-month study recently released by Innovation Endeavors, the Silicon Valley and Tel Aviv early-stage venture-capital firm solely backed by Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt.
The study looked into 330 Israeli IoT companies across five verticals and 23 sub-verticals, from the seed stages all the way to revenue growth.
“By now, nearly everyone has been exposed to the Internet of Things (IoT) in one way or another, whether through a Fitbit bracelet, a Nest smart thermostat, or now even the Apple watch,” according to a report summary.
Microsoft CEO to Attend Company’s Upcoming ‘Think Next’ Conference in Israel
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella will visit Israel for the first time since becoming head of the company, Israeli media reported Wednesday.
Nadella will be the key speaker at the Microsoft Think Next conference, to be held hosted at the company’s Israeli R&D center on Feb. 25, 2016, according to the Israeli economic daily Globes.
Microsoft has made five Israeli acquisitions thus far in 2015, the most recent of which is cyber-security company Secure Islands, reportedly for a sum ranging between $100 and $150 million. The company also bought cloud security firm Adallon, and another cyber- security company, Aorato.
Nadella made frequent trips to Israel as executive vice-president of Microsoft’s Cloud, but this will be his first visit to the country since becoming CEO in February 2014.
After 68 years, a Syrian great-grandmother comes home… to Israel
Sixty-eight years after she last saw her family, an 85-year-old, silver-haired, Jewish great-grandmother returned home to Haifa in northern Israel this week — having spent her entire adult life living as an Arab woman in the neighboring enemy state of Syria.
Rachel Elkayam, the third of 10 children, was a 16-year-old girl living in the mixed Jewish-Arab city of Haifa in 1947 when her parents moved the family to Tel Aviv. Conflict between pre-state Israel and the Arab world was escalating, ahead of the following year’s declaration of Israeli independence and the full-scale war that then erupted, and the Elkayams believed they would be safer in the center of Israel than the north. But Rachel, a rebellious child, had fallen in love with one of her Arab neighbors, Fuad, and was pregnant with his child. “I loved him, and he loved me,” Rachel Elkayam told Israel’s Channel 2 news in a report on her remarkable life story, broadcast on Friday night.
Fuad’s family came to Tel Aviv to find her, and she went back to Haifa with them, and married her young love in a ceremony that she kept secret from her parents. In fact, from the day she disappeared in Tel Aviv, the family never knew what had befallen her, and always presumed that she was dead.
Happy 100th to Sinatra, a supporter of Jewish causes
The Chairman of the Board was a friend of the Jews.
Crooner Frank Sinatra, who died in 1998, would have turned 100 on Saturday, December 12.
Over his lifetime, the legendary singer and actor garnered more accolades than most artists in the 20th century. He was also invested in politics and civil rights issues, and he donated large sums to presidential candidates like Ronald Reagan.
But many may be unaware of Sinatra’s lifelong sympathy for Jewish causes, such as his efforts to raise millions of dollars in Israel bonds and his charity to the Youth Center in Jerusalem. Today, the Frank Sinatra Student Center at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem still stands in his honor.
Sinatra was also close friends with Simon Wiesenthal, the well-known Holocaust survivor and Nazi hunter whose eponymous organization still works to fight anti-Semitism and bring Nazi collaborators to justice. Sinatra served on the board of the Simon Wiesenthal Center from 1980 until his death in 1998.
The center released a video on Thursday showing Sinatra introducing Wiesenthal at an award ceremony in 1980. In the video, Sinatra says, “I love Simon Wiesenthal with all my heart.”
“I would gladly give up every song I ever met to rest my head on the pillow of his accomplishments,” he continues.


This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 11 years and over 22,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.



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This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 12 years and over 25,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.

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Atheist Jew:"Elder of Ziyon probably had the greatest impression on me..."
Soccer Dad: "He undertakes the important task of making sure that his readers learn from history."
AbbaGav: "A truly exceptional blog..."
Judeopundit: "[A] venerable blog-pioneer and beloved patriarchal figure...his blog is indispensable."
Oleh Musings: "The most comprehensive Zionist blog I have seen."
Carl in Jerusalem: "...probably the most under-recognized blog in the JBlogsphere as far as I am concerned."
Aussie Dave: "King of the auto-translation."
The Israel Situation:The Elder manages to write so many great, investigative posts that I am often looking to him for important news on the PalArab (his term for Palestinian Arab) side of things."
Tikun Olam: "Either you are carelessly ignorant or a willful liar and distorter of the truth. Either way, it makes you one mean SOB."
Mondoweiss commenter: "For virulent pro-Zionism (and plain straightforward lies of course) there is nothing much to beat it."
Didi Remez: "Leading wingnut"

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