Saturday, May 28, 2016

From Ian:

Jewish Leader Blasts Guggenheim Museum for Website Post Accusing ‘Racist’ Israel of Censorship, Oppressing Palestinians
Foxman said that if the Guggenheim “wants to become a platform to discuss art and censorship, this is legitimate. However, to the best of my knowledge, Tamir’s article seems to be the only one about Israel, which is a blatant distortion on what is happening in Israel.”
According to pro-Israel blogger Elder of Ziyon, since 2006 the Guggenheim has been attempting to build a museum in Abu Dhabi, UAE, which “routinely engages in real censorship of art. Not the false ‘withholding funds’ definition that idiot artists like Chen Tamir whine about where a government doesn’t want to support someone publicly defecating on their flag, but honest-to Allah censorship of art.”
“When an artist or a museum sees an opportunity for self advancement, suddenly censorship is not so big a deal,” he wrote. “The Guggenheim, by publishing an article about the horrors of nonexistent Israeli censorship, has no problem with partnering with a country where art censorship is normal and explicit. The double standards to which Israel is subject by these supposed defenders of art and freedom of expression is stunning, and their hypocrisy is blatant.”
In response to The Algemeiner’s request for clarification as to why the Guggenheim would promote on its website an article demonizing Israel, a spokesman for the museum said, “As an arts institution, the Guggenheim welcomes a multitude of voices and perspectives on topics of interest to the wider artistic and cultural community. The views expressed are those of the writer, a curator who lives and works in Israel, not necessarily those of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation.”
Liberals’ Shameful Attacks on Israel
What explains this troubling trend? A friend of mine puts it this way: The Left thinks in terms of oppressor and oppressed, and in those terms it’s much easier for them to see the Palestinians as the oppressed than the Israelis, and arguments about who is at fault or who refuses to come to the table don’t change the basic power relations of a powerful, wealthy, successful society facing a weak, poor, failed one. It suggests the Left’s entire oppressor/oppressed framework often is misguided, but that’s just how liberals tend to think.
What’s wrong with this progressive construct is that it is morally offensive and empirically insane. One can sympathize with the suffering of individual Palestinians while also recognizing that Palestinians, not Israel, have brought these miseries upon themselves.
To quickly review the historical record: For those who blame the so-called “Israeli occupation” for Palestinian hostilities, it needs to be pointed out yet again that the PLO, an organization committed to the destruction of Israel, was founded in 1964, three years before Israel controlled the West Bank or Gaza. The entire Palestinian movement, from its inception to this day, is based on vanquishing the Jewish state.
This was evident in August 1967 when Israel’s offer to return all the land it had captured during the 1967 war in exchange for peace and normal relations, was rejected out of hand by Arab leaders meeting in Khartoum.
It was evident on the day Yasir Arafat signed the Oslo accords in 1993 when he addressed the Palestinian people and justified his action as the first step “in the 1974 plan,” referring to a phased plan whose goal was the ultimate eradication of Israel.
It was evident at Camp David in 2000, in Taba in 2001, and again in 2008 when enormously generous offers – Palestinian statehood, the division of Jerusalem, the return of the West Bank and Gaza – were rejected by the Palestinians, often followed by an intifada.
Anti-Semitism is on the rise, Spielberg warns in Harvard speech
Acclaimed director Steven Spielberg admitted he was “wrong” to think as a child that anti-Semitism “was fading,” telling Harvard’s graduating class that President Barack Obama was right when he warned that “anti-Semitism is on the rise.”
Spielberg, whose 99-year-old father Arnold sat in one of the first rows at his address before the Ivy League university’s class of 2016, told the graduates Thursday that the world “is full of monsters” espousing “racism, homophobia, ethnic hatred, class hatred” and “religious hatred.”
The Oscar winner also offered veiled criticism of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, known for his anti-migrant rhetoric. “We are a nation of immigrants — at least for now,” Spielberg said, and urged the graduates to vote in the upcoming election.
“As a kid, I was bullied — for being Jewish,” Spielberg recalled in his speech. “This was upsetting, but compared to what my parents and grandparents had faced, it felt tame. Because we truly believed that anti-Semitism was fading. And we were wrong. Over the last two years, nearly 20,000 Jews have left Europe to find higher ground. And earlier this year, I was at the Israeli embassy when President Obama stated the sad truth. He said: ‘We must confront the reality that around the world, anti-Semitism is on the rise. We cannot deny it.’”




Ryan Bellerose: Why I Feel Kinship With Jews
Stupid myths about Metis people proliferated, and things that were demonstrably false and patently ridiculous were accepted as fact. For instance , because many Metis were tall and large-boned, it was said that physically we were not really human beings, but of a different race. We had extra muscles and thicker bones because of this perceived physical superiority. We were inferred to be mentally inferior – that way white people could maintain their perceived superiority. They would say that even though Metis people were physically strong, we were like children. Apparently very large, very strong, very entrepreneurial children. We were also supposedly wicked and corrupt because it was hard to reconcile our business success with idea that white people were mentally superior. Therefore it must have been due to us having some sort of “advantage.”
We were polite but firm about maintaining our culture and traditions. This frustrated white people who believed in the superiority of white culture. Our refusal to adopt it was taken as an affront. When we expressed a desire to create a native state, it was considered an attack.
Our identity was always viewed strictly through a white lens, with a refusal to consider it through our own. We were pariahs who as long as we were useful would be tolerated and periodically we would be seen as impediments and removed with no compunctions.
So you see, if you simply change a few of those words, you should be able to understand why I feel kinship with Jews. Everything I just said about my people could have been referring to Jewish people (except the height thing, because Jews tend to be short). When I look at Jews, I look through a Metis lens, not the white lens. I don’t view their history as tragedy after tragedy because that would be false. I view it as a combination of tragedy and triumphs and frankly the triumphs vastly outnumber the tragedies, for one simple reason.
They are still here, pissing off the white culture of acquisition, possession and dominance through their very existence. I mean come on, you want to talk about iconoclasts, these people have been going their own way for three thousand years, refusing to assimilate, never doing what they are told, fighting for what they believe is right even against odds that are beyond ridiculous. As long as they are doing that, I feel like my people are not alone. That someone else understands us. I have always gone my own way, done my own thing. I refuse to just accept majority opinions without thought. I feel like my moral code is strong, so how I could I not feel a kinship with a people who are often so much like me and mine?
The U.N. Goes Beyond the Pale—Again
The expression “have you no shame?” has been applied so many times to resolutions biased against Israel at the United Nations, that it has simply lost its meaning.
We were reminded again this week of the futility of fairness at the United Nations and its agencies when the World Health Organization (WHO) adopted a measure calling for an investigation of Israel over “mental, physical, and health” violations. It cited “the health conditions in the occupied Palestinian territory,” as well as “the occupied Syrian Golan.”
Voting for the resolution were 107countries including, shamefully, France, Germany and the United Kingdom. Those three countries should be singled out not only for knowing better, but for their continual pandering on the Israeli-Palestinian issue.
As Syria burns (and where hospitals are bombed), Yemen implodes and Islamic extremism spreads daily through the Middle East and Africa, the UN system—seemingly impotent to stop any of these crises—is reaching back once again to the tried and true hectoring of Israel. And with frightening threats posed by the Zika virus and by a new strain of an antibiotic-resistant virus, it strains credulity as to why the WHO has chosen to muddy its reputation by politicizing its mission.
It is no secret that Israeli hospitals and doctors not only treat Palestinians in need, but patients from throughout the Arab world. The Israeli organization Save a Child’s Heart has performed thousands of pediatric heart operations on Palestinian children, and hundreds of others from the Arab world and Africa. My synagogue is currently raising funds to support two such operations, for Palestinian and Tanzanian children.
Arab League looks to French summit to force Israeli concessions
Arab League chief Nabil al-Arabi blasted Israel as a bastion of "fascism and racial discrimination" on Saturday at a meeting of foreign ministers to discuss a French Middle East peace initiative.
The Arab ministers are expected to adopt a resolution on the plan to revive
negotiations between Israel and President Mahmoud Abbas's Palestinian Authority.
In his speech to the ministers, Arabi, who has been a vocal critic of Israel, said the country "has truly become today the last bastion of fascism, colonialism and racial discrimination in the world".
Abbas has rejected an Israeli offer for direct negotiations instead of the French multilateral peace initiative, which Israel has turned down.
On Saturday, he blamed Israel for stalling the talks.
"We tried hard with the Israeli government to implement signed treaties and respect our and their commitments, but they refused," he said.
Abbas asks for NATO to replace IDF in West Bank as part of peace deal
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in Cairo on Saturday called for NATO forces to replace the IDF in the West Bank, as part of as part of any peace deal that leads to the creation of a two-state solution.
He also rejected the idea of recognizing Israel as a Jewish state, when speaking before the Arab League.
Recognition of Israel as the Jewish home land as well as acceptance of a demilitarized Palestinians state, with the IDF maintaining a military presence in the West Bank, has been two of the cornerstone Israeli demands for any resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Abbas spoke in advance of the June 3 ministerial meeting in Paris, to launch a new French led peace initiative, which would set the parameters for renewed negotiating process.
Neither the Israelis nor the Palestinians have been invited to the Paris meeting. Israel has opposed the initiative which it believes dictates the results of the negotiations.
Report: Israel and Arab states discuss new Palestinian leader to succeed Abbas
The United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Jordan are reportedly planning to have former Gaza strongman Mohammed Dahlan replace Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.
Citing unnamed senior Palestinian and Jordanian sources, Middle East Eye reported Friday on the joint plan to bring Dahlan, the former leader of Abbas’ Fatah party in the Gaza Strip, back from exile in the Gulf.
The plan was discussed with Israel, according to the article, which did not indicate Israel’s reaction.
Dahlan, a bitter rival of Abbas, was driven from Gaza after Hamas seized control of the coastal enclave in 2007. In 2011, he was expelled from Fatah amid allegations of corruption and accusations that he had poisoned longtime Palestinian Authority leader Yasser Arafat.
Abbas, 81, has headed the Palestinian Authority since 2005. Dahlan who is 54 and headed the Palestinian police in Gaza in the immediate aftermath of the 1993 Oslo Accords, “has close ties to” the UAE’s royals, according to the Middle East Eye. (h/t Gastwirt)
Abbas: Yes, Palestinians incite, but so does Israel
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Saturday addressed the Arab League in Cairo, telling Arab leaders that PA-controlled media outlets and school programs indeed incite against Israel but that Israel does the same against Palestinians.
“Yes, we incite [against Israel] in the media and in educational institutions, but so does Israel,” he told the 22-member Arab body, according to Channel 2.
Abbas further called on the US to intervene in the issue, as he did last month when urged to renew the Trilateral Anti-Incitement Committee, which monitors cases where incitement to violence and terror is suspected.
The committee — whose members include Israeli, Palestinian and American officials — was formed as part of the Wye River Memorandum in 1998, and met every two months until the outbreak of the Second Intifada in September 2000.
Israel has repeatedly accused Abbas of failing to condemn the wave of Palestinian attacks on Israeli civilians and security forces that erupted in mid-September, and says his PA hierarchy presides over incitement to violence against Israel.
Palestinians hold mass funeral for assailant killed by Hebron soldier
Abdel Fattah al-Sharif, a Palestinian assailant who was shot and killed by Israeli soldier Elor Azaria in March as he lay disarmed on the ground, was buried on Saturday in Hebron. Israel had returned al-Sharif’s body to his family on Friday.
A crowd estimated at 1,000 attended the funeral of al-Sharif’s, whose body was wrapped in a Hamas flag, as seen in a video broadcast by Hamas channel Al-Quds TV. Cries of “Allahu akbar” (God is great) as well as other slogans could be heard from the crowds.
Israel has expressed concern that the burials of slain attackers are being used to incite against the Jewish state. As interim defense minister, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu authorized the return of the body for burial.
On Saturday, Sharif’s father Yusri, 43, demanded that “a fair sentence” be handed down against Azaria. “The Israelis must judge their own just as they judge the Palestinians,” he told AFP. “Imagine if it was the other way around, that a Palestinian had killed someone. They would sentence him to life,” he added.
Jaffa Military Court last month indicted Sgt. Azaria for manslaughter and inappropriate military conduct for shooting and killing Sharif on March 24, minutes after Sharif participated in a stabbing attack against Israeli soldiers in the city of Hebron.
Deceiving Cairo and helping IS, Hamas sets Gaza on course for new troubles
A few days ago, Hamas’s security forces in Gaza arrested a group of Salafi activists — members of Salafiya Jihadiya, a movement made up of Islamist groups that identify mainly with Islamic State. The head of the group is the son of a well-known Salafi preacher from the Shahin family. Hamas officials claimed that the group was planning to cross Gaza’s border into Sinai to join members of Islamic State in their fight against Egypt.
News of the arrests created the sense that Hamas was working to stop attempts by these Gazan activists to help Islamic State in its war against the Egyptian army. The arrests were presented as part of an impressive operation by Hamas, fulfilling promises its representatives made to Egypt during a visit to Cairo two months ago. At that time, amid escalating tension between Egypt and Hamas and accusations of close collaboration between Hamas’s military wing and Walayat Sinai (Islamic State’s branch in Sinai), the high-ranking Hamas delegates assured Egyptian officials that Hamas would end its relationship with Islamic State there and then.
Hamas has indeed since reinforced its troop deployment along the Gaza-Egypt border, and promised to stop all smuggling done via the tunnels there. The Salafi arrests thus provided further ostensible proof of the new Hamas commitment to Egypt’s well-being. (Those arrests, in turn, prompted rocket fire at Israel two days ago, for which the Sheikh Omar Hadid Brigade, a Salafi group, claimed responsibility — a case of Israel being targeted by a Gaza terror group angry with Hamas.)
Yet there seems to be a wide gap between what senior Hamas officials are telling the Egyptians and what the heads of its military wing are actually doing on the ground. Despite the promises by Gaza’s rulers to stop the smuggling to and from Sinai and the recent arrests, Hamas continues to maintain a delicate and complicated web of interests and alliances with Islamic State in Sinai.
BBC News fails to report another Gaza missile attack to English-speakers
At around 11 pm on May 25th missiles were fired from the Gaza Strip towards Israel with one projectile landing in open ground in the Sha’ar HaNegev district. The attack was apparently claimed by a Salafist group. Later in the night the Israeli air force responded with strikes on two Hamas installations in the Gaza Strip.
There was no reporting of that attack on the BBC’s English language website but the Israeli response was the subject of an article which appeared on the BBC Arabic website.
Since the beginning of 2016 the BBC has not reported on any of the missile attacks from the Gaza Strip on Israeli civilians living near the border in the English language. However, Israeli responses to those attacks have received coverage in Arabic.
Report: Hezbollah digging tunnels, placing rockets on border for next conflict with Israel
Lebanese terror organization Hezbollah is preparing for its next conflict with Israel by digging terror attack tunnels, tracking IDF movement and positioning its large arsenal of rockets along the northern border with Israel, Lebanese daily newspaper as-Safir reported Saturday.
The report comes as a flurry of articles are being published marking the 16 anniversary of Israel's withdrawal from southern Lebanon, in which the two countries were in engaged in the so called South Lebanon Conflict from 1985 to 2000.
"Resistance fighters are watching, making preparations and digging tunnels so enemy soldiers and settlers are losing sleep", the newspaper said.
"Observations of advanced electronic infrastructure and night-vision goggles are closely watching the border fence, which are able to transmit real-time information," the report added.
The newspaper noted that the "preparations are being established so Hezbollah fighters can participate in combat at any moment."
The report additionally addresses the terror tunnel infrastructure Hezbollah is creating along the northern border with Israel, taking notes from their jihadi militant counterpart Hamas.
On looking down, not up
There is wilfull blindness to the top-down institutional propagation of Labour’s Antisemitism
The silence of those first few weeks still stuns me, and makes me feel viscerally sick for having pledged my allegiance to Labour. It wasn’t so much the promotion of Corbyn & his tribe, whose Soviet-infused Marxism’s embrace of ‘Anti-Colonial’ Islamism had brought together two smouldering brands of antisemitism & re-kindled a phoenix-fire of Jew-hate: no, we knew about that. It was that mainstream Labour leaders were silent on the eternal hatred that they knew full-well was now encamped in their home.
Perhaps, like us, they wanted to give the crank-rank outsider — a man who’ddefied the whip 428 times — a chance to readjust to his lottery win and to re-assess his past associations in the context of the moral responsibility of leadership … but five months later, at an ‘acid test’ meeting with the Board of Deputies he moved not one jot. The event for the Jewish community was seismic; yet the press and Labour Party barely registered a tremor.
All of his behaviours signalled antisemitism, but none were antisemitic acts per se. However, on the 5th of April, 2016, as chronicled here, Jeremy Corbyn crossed a line. In short: when the Antisemitic fringe that he had so emboldened led to a Jewish MP complaining of antisemitic abuse, Jez agreed with his brother Piers that her complaint was disingenuously got up as a plot to defend ‘Zionist’ interests. The Jews are crying wolf. The Jews have other motives. The Jews are not what they seem. With three words: ‘He’s not wrong’, in defence of a sibling so antisemitic he believes ISIS is a Jewish creation, he flagrantly and publicly moved from fulsome backer of antisemites to antisemite.
I watched, knowing that Jewish leaders, senior members of the Labour Party and newspaper editors would have understood exactly what they had witnessed. What would they say?
The Board of Deputies spoke, but all they could coax from dry lips was to pronounce his statement ‘Deeply disturbing’. As for the rest of the polity:
Nothing.
Labour UK reinstates member despite anti-Semitic comments
A leader of the left-wing ‘Momentum’ political action committee and member of the UK’s Labour party has been reinstated, following an investigation into what were described as anti-Semitic statements that had led to her suspension.
Jackie Walker, who was suspended earlier this month following controversial comments condemning Jews as enablers of the “African holocaust”, was placed on suspension from the party, which in recent months has seen dozens of members – including MPs, town councillors and even former London Mayor Ken Livingstone come under fire for allegedly anti-Semitic statements.
On Saturday a Labour UK spokesperson released a statement regarding Walker’s status within the party.
“Following the outcome of an investigation, Jacqueline Walker is no longer suspended and remains a member of the party.”
Walker had earlier claimed that Jews were the “chief financiers of the sugar and slave trade” and had played a pivotal role in what she described as “the African holocaust.”
“[W]hat debt do we owe the Jews?” Walker wrote. “[H]aving been a victim does not give you a right to be a perpetrator”.
Former London mayor Ken Livingstone fired from radio show following Hitler comments
Controversial former mayor of London Ken Livingstone was fired from his radio broadcast show Saturday following comments he made last month claiming Adolf Hitler supported Zionism, according to The Independent.
Livingstone, who hosted a Saturday morning talk show on LBC Radio, was informed of the decision over the weekend by the station's owner, Global Radio.
On news of Livingstone's abrupt termination, The Campaign Against Antisemitism hailed the decision, saying in a statement that they "applaud" Global Radio for taking appropriate action against the former UK Labour official.
“The strongest response to racism is for society to shun racists, which is what LBC’s owner Global Radio has rightly done, and we applaud them for heeding our calls," the statement said.
“Having offended Jewish people, and others committed to decency and anti-racism, Ken Livingstone proceeded to repeat his comments as widely and frequently as possible in the media. Global has now removed his most prominent outlet for doing so,” it added.
Longtime Cantor Rebukes Leeds Jewish Community for ‘Absolutely Disgusting’ Decision to Host ‘Antisemitic’ Labour MP Naz Shah
The decision by the Jewish community of Leeds, UK to host a Labour member of parliament who was suspended from the party for antisemitism is “absolutely disgusting,” a longtime local congregational leader told The Algemeiner on Friday.
David Apfel — who has served as a cantor for the Leeds Jewish community for the last 35 years and whose father served as the Av Beit Din (rabbinical court head) of the city — said it was “wrong and distressing the Leeds Jewish Representative Council (LJRC) is inviting antisemite Naz Shah to occupy a platform at a leading synagogue.”
Naz Shah, who was suspended in April after it was revealed that she had called for Israel to be relocated to the US, will take part in an event titled “An evening with Naz Shah, MP for Bradford West,” hosted by the LJRC and the Beth Hamidrash Hagadol (BHH) Cultural Committee. The event was initially slated to take place at the BHH synagogue, but was moved to the local reform synagogue, Sinai Temple.
According to a LJRC spokesman who spoke to the UK’s Jewish Chronicle, the event was planned immediately following Shah’s apology in the House of Commons for her posts, which she said were “not excusable.”
Cambridge Referendum Calling to Break Ties With National Student Union Over ‘Antisemitic’ President Narrowly Defeated
Britain’s Cambridge University narrowly voted to remain a member of the National Student Union (NUS) this week after calls were made to disaffiliate over the organization’s incoming controversial president who has been accused of antisemitism.
The results of the vote – which took place between May 24-27 — were announced Friday by the Cambridge University Students’ Union (CUSU). 46.62 percent of students voted in favor of disaffiliation, with 51.52 against. Voter turnout was high, with 28.76 percent of eligible voters casting their ballot.
Adam Crafton of the “NUS: Let Cambridge Decide” campaign, which called for disaffiliation from the NUS, said in a statement, “We are of course disappointed not to have seen this through and secured the disaffiliation vote.”
While the vote may not have resulted in their favor, Crafton said, “We believe that we have awoken the Cambridge student community to the challenges facing Jewish students on British campuses in 2016 and that is an immensely satisfying achievement. It has been a draining challenge at times but hugely rewarding.”
Crafton issued congratulations to the “Remain Campaign,” saying he “truly hopes they honor their campaigning promises to fight for Jewish students within the NUS.”
Daphne Anson: "Free Palestine" Speech Wins London Schoolgirl a Speaking Award
This year's Redbridge Regional Finals Award has been won by Wanstead High School student Leanne Mohamad, who declares, inter alia, that "Islam is perfect!" and ends the highly tendentious emotive speech with"Let Us Together say 'Free Palestine!", to thunderous applause.
I may be wrong, but I have a hunch that young Leanne was preaching to the converted...
Meanwhile, outside Holiday Inn (scene of the G4S AGM) in the leafy outer London suburb of Sutton, some old friends of ours do what they do best in this Alex Seymour video. Before the usual Israel-demonising declarations, a singer-guitarist serenades ...
Erdogan condemns US support of Kurdish militias in Syria
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday condemned the United States’ support of Kurdish fighters in Syria after AFP pictures revealed US commandos wearing the insignia of a militia branded a terror group by Ankara.
“The support they give to… the YPG (militia)… I condemn it,” said Erdogan. “Those who are our friends, who are with us in NATO… cannot, must not send their soldiers to Syria wearing YPG insignia.”
Erdogan’s comments came after an AFP photographer captured images of US troops in Syria wearing insignia of the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG).
Ankara regards the YPG as a terror group, accusing it of carrying out attacks inside Turkey and being the Syrian branch of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) which has fought an insurgency against the Turkish state for over three decades.
Al Quds Day Toronto's Sly and Clever Branding Uses "Icon" Mandela to Disguise Its Genocidal Aims
Well, after all, employing the saintly Nelson serves two purposes. First, it helps Febreze a stinky Khomeinist agit/prop effort whose ultimate goal is the eradication of the "cancer" of Israel. Second, alluding to South Africa is an aide–mémoire meant to remind all that Israel-is-an-apartheid-state/Zionism-is-racism/the Palestinians-are-Mandela's-heirs, etc.
Apparently, someone over in Iran made the executive decision that calling it, say, Final Solution Day, or even Shia Supremacism Day, would be far less likely to coax the usual useful infidel idiots, the ones who idolize Mandela, to flock to their toxic cause.
And BTW, there appears to be no objection at all this time to these hate mongers holding their Zionhass-a-palooza on the grounds of the Ontario government legislature--and on the Canada Day holiday weekend, yet!
Gee, I wonder how many of Justin Trudeau's newly-settled Syrian "refugees" will show up to swell the ranks of the Jew-hating throng?
Khamenei warns of Western ‘schemes’ as his new MPs meet
Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei urged newly elected lawmakers Saturday to resist “schemes” from the West as parliamentarians met in Tehran for the first time since elections finished in April.
“The turbulent state of the region and the world and the international adventurism of oppressors and their vassals have confronted the Islamic Iran with conditions more complicated than before,” said a message from Khamenei, read to a packed parliament chamber.
Khamenei, who has the final say on all matters in the country, repeated his familiar call for loyalty to the principles of the 1979 revolution and resistance against Western infiltration.
“It is the revolutionary and legal duty of you to make the parliament a stronghold against the schemes, charms and impudently excessive demands of the Arrogance,” his message read.
“Arrogance” was a term first used by the Islamic republic’s founder Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini to describe Western powers, especially the United States.
Iranian General With US Blood On His Hands Formally Invited By Iraq To Help Fight ISIS
Not only is Iran participating in the battle for the Iraqi city of Fallujah, reports claim the Iraqi government formally requested assistance from the notorious Iranian general, Qassem Soleimani.
The battle for Fallujah, which officially began over the weekend, is the most recent major operation in the fight against Islamic State in Iraq. Various forces are participating in the battle, including elements of the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF), Iranian-backed Popular Mobilization Units (PMUs) and Maj. Gen. Soleimani, the head of Iran’s Qods Force.
The revelation Soleimani was formally requested by Iraq symbolizes the remarkable influence Iran has in the country, and how the influence of the U.S. may be waning. Iran, once Iraqi President Saddam Hussein’s mortal enemy, has solidified itself as a major influence in Iraqi politics, especially since the U.S. withdrawal in 2011.
Soleimani has been an integral factor in Iran’s popularity among the majority Shia population in Iraq. He is known to have once said “we’re [Iran] not like the Americans. We don’t abandon our friends.”
Iran arrests 8 for producing ‘obscene’ music videos
Iran has arrested eight people involved in producing “obscene” music videos, Tehran prosecutor general Abbas Jafarabadi told the judiciary’s news agency Mizan Online on Saturday.
“Eight people producing obscene music videos, whose clips were broadcast on a famous anti-revolutionary television channel, were arrested in Tehran last week,” he said.
Their charges will be reviewed by the special court of culture and media, he added.
Dozens of Persian-language television channels are broadcast on satellite, all based outside Iran. Some air news programs while others show only music videos, television series and movies.
Some entertainment channels have become very popular in the country in recent years despite being banned inside the Islamic republic.
Bangladesh tycoon charged over meeting with Israeli official
Bangladesh police Thursday charged a senior opposition official with sedition for allegedly plotting against the state when he met an Israeli government adviser, an official said.
The move comes as Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s government is stepping up a crackdown on political opponents in the Muslim-majority country, which is reeling from a wave of killings blamed on Islamists.
Aslam Chowdhury, a joint secretary of the main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), was arrested last week after local media reported he had met an Israeli government adviser in India in March.
Dhaka Metropolitan Police spokesman Masudur Rahman said Chowdhury was now charged with sedition and could face up to three years if convicted.
Irreverent comedy on anti-Semitism gets first screening — by French Jews
When the French-Jewish film director Yvan Attal titled his much-hyped comedy about anti-Semitism “They Are Everywhere,” he did so in reference to how some anti-Semites feel about Jews and vice versa.
But the French-language title applies in another way, too: Though the film has yet to be released, Attal and the star-studded cast have been all over the French media, which are abuzz over the irreverent take on a problem that’s seen — by some, at least — as a scourge of French society.
“The Jews” — the English title for the film — stars Attal, an Israel-born actor-director who grew up in Paris, and his life partner, actor-singer Charlotte Gainsbourg. The mere fact of the film’s existence has been the subject of dozens of news articles by major publications in recent weeks, including Le Figaro, Paris Match and the Agence France-Presse.
The cast — including famed comedians in France like Dany Boon, who is Jewish, and Benoît Poelvoorde — have appeared on several prime-time talk shows.
Given the high profile of the movie, I could hardly believe my luck when CRIF, the umbrella group of French Jewish communities, invited me to a pre-premiere of the film — it had not been screened before any audience — followed by a Q&A with Attal.
WATCH: Israeli Startup Trying to Manufacture Drugs in Outer Space
More than 5,500 startups are operating in Israel today, with 1,400 new ones founded just last year, creating innovative new high-tech products in fields such as software, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, and 3D printing. A video report for Bloomberg Businessweek took viewers inside Israel’s thriving startup scene.
Israel has been able to replicate Silicon Valley where other countries have failed because it has “come closest to replicating an environment that floods an area with clever engineers, encourages them to take risks, and feeds them with plenty of capital,” Businessweek correspondent Ashlee Vance reported. Due to their army service, “soldiers learn to make quick, massive decisions early on, and they form deep bonds with their comrades that carry over to the startup life.”
In the course of his report, Vance profiled the startups Consumer Physics, which makes a device that can analyze the chemical composition of everyday products; SpacePharma, which is developing ways to adapt drug manufacturing to space; and Umoove, which makes software that can analyze one’s health by tracking eye movements. He also visited Nazareth to meet with Fadi Swidan, the founder of the tech accelerator nazTech, which helps Arab engineers become part of Israel’s tech ecosystem. (Swidan works with Hybrid, an accelerator created by the Israeli Ministry of Economy and Industry, to match Israeli-Arab entrepreneurs with alumni of Unit 8200, the elite IDF intelligence unit whose alumni have gone on to found many successful startups.)
Could a New Smart Cam for the Blind Also Help Dyslexic People?
At some point, after hours of speech therapy, countless consultations with child specialists and thousands of dollars spent without much progress to help my dyslexic daughter, Gefen, learn to read, I was at a loss for how to move forward.
Despite my own passion for reading and writing, I was about to give up and trust my worldly instincts that in the digital age, with cellphones and Siri, some clever gadget would eventually come along to help her make sense of letter groupings.
No one else could.
A visit this week to Jerusalem high-tech company, OrCam, indicated that my theory was not just derived from lazy parenting but a real intuition that evolving technology has huge potential for all matter of visual and learning difficulties.
OrCam was set up five years ago by the same folks who brought us the accident avoidance system Mobileye, that little camera that sits on your vehicle to stop it — or us — from colliding with a foreign object.
The company has been exploring the field of artificial intelligence and for now has settled on developing a device aimed primarily at enhancing the quality of life for the blind and visually impaired.
It's called MyEye.
The device is comprised of a smart camera connected to a tiny computer that attaches to a pair of glasses. The camera can be programmed to identify places, people and products. And, more important, it reads text. Not just one or two random words but entire books.
Israel Provides Disaster-Relief Supplies to Sri Lanka After Deadly Floods
The Disaster Relief Management Ministry of Sri Lanka received water pumps, water filters, solar lighting kits and LED torches, as well as 50,000 tablets for water purification. The MFA said in a released statement that, depending on the needs of the Sri Lankan people, Israel will also provide long- and medium-term cooperation, which will include water expertise.
“At this difficult times, the people of Israel and its government stand by the people of Sri Lanka,” the ministry said.
Sri Lanka’s Disaster Management Center (DMC) confirmed that the floods across the country claimed the lives of at least 101 people, while another 100 people were still listed as missing in the central district of Kegalle, which was affected the most, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported. The floods triggered landslides, and a DMC spokesperson said, more than 530 houses have been completely destroyed, and another 4,000 “partly damaged.” A third of the 650,000 residents in the Sri Lankan capital of Colombo were driven out of their homes, and Sri Lanka’s Finance Ministry estimated the damage to small businesses and industries at about $2 billion, according to AFP. The government has promised compensation to victims, though details have yet to be announced.
Israeli Ambassador to Sri Lanka Daniel Carmon said the Jewish state was “honored” to provide emergency assistance to Sri Lanka following the natural disaster. He said that a “National Day” reception taking place Thursday in Colombo will be dedicated to victims of the flood and to the “cementing” Israel’s strong relationship with Sri Lanka.



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