Thursday, June 30, 2016

From Ian:

David Singer: European Union Acclaims Abbas Whilst Flogging Farage
Abbas’s address contained a litany of lies based on a fabricated reality from the outset:
“I would also like to thank you all for all the different kinds of aid you have given, aiding us in institution-building and helping us establish the bases for a democratic regime which will be stable in the future and which will be able to comply with international criteria for democracy, and in particular we want to establish a proper rule of law and proper respect for human rights.”
EUP parliamentarians – including Shulz and Juncker – silently swallowed these soothing words despite:
  • Gazan and West Bank Arabs having been denied the right to vote since 2006 or to choose a President to replace Abbas whose term of office had expired in 2010.
  • The “Palestinian National Authority” having been unilaterally disbanded by Abbas by decree on 3 January 2013
  • Honour killings and victimisation of gays continuing under Abbas’s regime
  • Life imprisonment being imposed for selling land to Jews.
A duplicitous Abbas further claimed:
“Our history has been, frankly, one of a continued existence in this territory since the dawn of civilization until now”
Utter nonsense.
The “Palestinians” were defined for the first time in history in 1964 by article 6 of the PLO Charter:
“The Palestinians are those Arab citizens who were living normally in Palestine up to 1947, whether they remained or were expelled. Every child who was born to a Palestinian parent after this date whether in Palestine or outside is a Palestinian.”
The Arab citizens of Palestine formed part of the “existing non-Jewish communities” in the 1922 League of Nations Mandate for Palestine.
Exclusively high-jacking the term “Palestinians” constitutes racist-inspired semantic fraud.
Australia's most popular political commentator Andrew Bolt contrasts Farage's reception at the EU to Abbas blood libels.
Bolt Report Editorial - June 29 (Abbas bit starts at 5min)


Abbas and the European Parliament: Incitement in Spades
It is vital that European and American leaders make clear to Abbas that his anti-Semitism and conspiracy theories about Israel are unacceptable and will be rejected out of hand.
Further, it needs to be said that, not only must he and the PA stop the incitement against Israel and Jews, but President Abbas should stop propagandizing against Israel to the Europeans and others.
It would be far more productive for him to finally sit down and conduct direct negotiations with Israel. This is the only path to peace and a two-state solution.
And yet, Abbas rejected Israeli President Rueben Rivlin’s offer to meet during their shared time in Brussels. To a certain degree, one can understand this decision. Why meet with an Israeli leader when European officials roundly will endorse his canards and not force him to explain his baseless accusations?
The world must stop encouraging Abbas’ hateful and counterproductive path. If not, we will only hear more outlandish statements by him, which harm peace efforts, which harm Israel and which harm the Palestinians most of all.
Elliott Abrams: The Positive Side of Nationalism
In the Brexit vote, Brits chose to reject those patronizing views and express their nationalism. By this, they seem to have meant that they want to make the key decisions about their future, and about how they live, through their own democratic institutions. On the BBC on Friday morning, a typically biased interviewer spoke with Radek Sikorski, the former foreign minister of Poland, who denounced Brexit as dangerous and malevolent. His anger and resentment were so great that they finally moved even the BBC to defend the vote. How? On democratic grounds. Don’t people have a right to vote? Isn’t self-rule sacred? It was half amusing, half inspiring to see the interviewer rise to the defense of his countrymen and -women when they were treated with contempt for choosing Westminster over Brussels.
There is a message here for Israelis — and for Americans.
For Israelis, the referendum fight helps explain their unpopularity among European elites. If nationalism is primitive and infantile and dangerous, it is no wonder that Israel is criticized endlessly and its efforts to defend itself are seen as excessive. Its basic demand — to be understood and acknowledged as a Jewish state — is itself considered illicit; ethno-national states are out of the question these days. Defending your state with actual guns is positively medieval in the eyes of today’s European leaders.
Americans beg to differ, and that’s a reason that Israel is more popular here. Believing in your country and defending it with your army is considered patriotic here, not primitive. The sacrifice of sovereignty to bureaucrats abroad would offend Americans just as it offends so many Britons. All this helps explain Donald Trump’s successes this year, for he speaks a language of nationalism: defending borders and controlling immigration, for example, which was also a central issue in the British debate. That call to “Make America Great Again” is a reflection of nationalism, and it has found a wide audience.



Two Israelis wounded in Netanya stabbing attack
Two people were stabbed and wounded on Thursday evening in what police said was a terror attack outside a market in the coastal city of Netanya.
The Magen David Adom emergency response service said a man described as being around 40 years old sustained serious injures from multiple stab wounds to the upper body. The other victim, a 62-year-old woman, was lightly injured in the attack.
Both were taken to the city’s Laniado Hospital for treatment.
The assailant, identified by Israel Police spokesperson Micky Rosenfeld as a Palestinian man from the West Bank city of Tulkarem, was shot dead at the scene by an armed civilian.
Reports named the stabber as 40-year-old Wael Abu Saleh.
US official: Teen killed in Kiryat Arba was American citizen
A US official says the 13-year-old Israeli girl killed this morning in Kiryat Arba was an American citizen, AP’s diplomatic correspondent Matt Lee says on Twitter.
Hallel Yaffa Ariel was murdered by a Palestinian terrorist who snuck into her bedroom while she slept.
#US official says 13-year-old girl stabbed to death by #Palestinian attacker in #WestBank was an American citizen.
— Matt Lee (@APDiploWriter) June 30, 2016
From Brexit to Visions of a UN Exit?
That's just a small sampling of the staggering roster of UN scandals, abuses, cover-ups and failures. Along with the apparently chronic problem of peacekeeper rape (despite a policy of "zero tolerance"), and a bigoted fixation on condemning first and foremost the democratic state of Israel, the UN has gone from the globally corrupt 1996-2003 Oil-for-Food relief program for Iraq, to massive bribery and kickback scandals in its procurement department, to narcotics in the mailroom, to the current drama surrounding a former head of the UN General Assembly, the late John Ashe. Ashe was facing criminal charges in a million-dollar-plus bribery case, accused by U.S. prosecutors of having turned his UN post into a "platform for profit," when -- having pleaded not guilty -- he was found dead just last week in his Dobbs Ferry, N.Y. home. According to the medical examiner, he was killed in an accident in which a barbell fell on his neck.
If all this sounds like the saga of a global mafia that happens to have acquired diplomatic immunity, plus an annual multi-billion-dollar entitlement from U.S. taxpayers, plus a luxurious headquarters complex in midtown Manhattan, plus a neo-colonial globe-girdling empire of offices, programs, staff, "public-private partnerships," trust funds and influence, you've got the idea.
Meantime, the UN in its role as promoter of world peace has done nothing to effectively deter turf grabs by Russia and China; has given its eager approval to President Obama's rotten Iran nuclear deal; has failed despite umpteen Security Council resolutions, sanctions and statements to stop North Korea's nuclear missile program -- or for that matter, North Korea's hideous human rights abuses. In the UN General Assembly, the second-largest voting bloc, the 120-member Non-Aligned Movement, has been chaired since 2012 by the world's leading state sponsor of terrorism, Iran.
The UN, for all its trappings of democratic process, is a collective of 193 member states, of which the majority are not free. Their governments do not actually account to the people they pretend to represent. The UN's system and priorities are such that there is no place for the government of the genuinely democratic Republic of China on Taiwan, but there is a seat, with accompanying privileges, for the totalitarian Kim dynasty of North Korea.
As a rule, the only member state that every so often tries to reform the UN is its chief sugar-daddy, the U.S., with some help from the British and (during the recent tenure of Prime Minister Stephen Harper) the Canadians. As another rule, the UN -- with its immunities, opacity and spigots of money flowing as an entitlement from the world's developed democracies -- is pretty much impervious to reform. It's been tried, over and over. The chief result is a UN that keeps getting bigger, not better.
What is to be done?
Gove and May, top contenders to succeed Cameron, both firm Israel supporters
The race to succeed David Cameron as Conservative prime minister in the UK took an unexpected twist on Thursday with the announcement that Justice Secretary Michael Gove was throwing his hat in the ring — and the decision of Boris Johnson not to run. The shock moves mean that the two leading contenders to succeed Cameron are Gove and Home Secretary Theresa May, both of whom are staunch supporters of Israel.
Cameron has also been one of Israel’s warmest friends in Europe, and Johnson too is a firm supporter — underlining how widespread support is for Israel in the top ranks of the governing Conservative Party, in contrast to the relentless criticisms of Israel from many senior opposition Labour figures, led by party leader Jeremy Corbyn.
Gove, 48, is one of parliament’s most passionate pro-Zionists, a supporter of faith schools when he was education secretary and a denouncer of BDS as “a crime.” He has been engaged with British Jews since at least 1998. He only made his first visit to Israel in December 2013, however, because he was terrified of flying and eventually had to go to a hypnotist to conquer that fear.
Jeremy Corbyn Compares Israel to ISIS During ‘Antisemitism’ Speech
Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of Britain’s Labour Party, compared Israel to the Islamic State terrorist group during a speech Thursday on antisemitism.
“Our Jewish friends are no more responsible for the actions of Israel or the [Benjamin] Netanyahu government than our Muslim friends are for those various self-styled Islamic states or organizations,” Corbyn said at the launch of Labour’s new report on antisemitism, which was led by Shami Chakrabarti, the director of a civil liberties advocacy group based in the United Kingdom.
Corbyn’s remarks drew loud applause from the audience at the event.
Many listeners interpreted the Labour leader’s statement as a direct comparison between the Israeli government and ISIS. Several other jihadist groups, such as the Taliban in Afghanistan and al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula based in Yemen, also strive to build Islamic states governed by Sharia law, or Islamic law, in a similar manner to ISIS’ rule in parts of Iraq and Syria.
Sam Stopp, a Labour councillor, said that Corbyn compared Israel to ISIS and wrote on Twitter, “For that alone, he should resign. I am red with fury,” according to the Independent, a British newspaper.
The Independent also reported that Ruth Smeeth, a Labour member of Parliament who is Jewish, “left the event in tears after a member of the Momentum group ‘accused her of colluding with the Daily Telegraph,’” a right-leaning British paper.
Corbyn defended his statement, saying “of course I’m not” linking the two.
Jeremy Corbyn Appears to Compare Israel to ISIS During Antisemitism Speech


Jewish Labour MP harangued as party’s anti-Semitism report unveiled
A Jewish member of parliament for Labour on Thursday morning stormed out of a London event at which the party unveiled the findings of its anti-Semitism inquiry, after a supporter of leader Jeremy Corbyn accused her of controlling the media.
“This morning, at the launch of the Chakrabarti Inquiry into antisemitism, I was verbally attacked by a Momentum activist and Jeremy Corbyn supporter who used traditional antisemitic slurs to attack me for being part of a ‘media conspiracy,'” Ruth Smeeth wrote in a statement on her website after the incident. (Momentum is a left-wing pro-Corbyn Labour group.)
“It is beyond belief that someone could come to the launch of a report on antisemitism in the Labour Party and espouse such vile conspiracy theories about Jewish people, which were ironically highlighted as such in Ms Chakrabarti’s report, while the leader of my own party stood by and did absolutely nothing,” she said.
“Until today I had made no public comment about Jeremy’s ability to lead our party, but the fact that he failed to intervene is final proof for me that he is unfit to lead, and that a Labour Party under his stewardship cannot be a safe space for British Jews,” she continued.
Ruth Smith Storms Out of Labour Meeting Over Anti-Semitism


Lapid blasts UK Labor leader Corbyn for comparing Israel to ISIS
The Labor head's remarks came against the backdrop of the publication of the results of an internal investigation concerning antisemitism in the British Labor party.
Lapid referenced this morning's (Thursday) murder of 13-year-old Hallel-Yaffa Ariel by a Palestinian terrorist in his statement, saying: "It is inconceivable that on such a tragic day for Israel, on which an innocent girl is murdered by an evil terrorist lowlife simply for the crime of being Jewish, the head of the opposition in Britain will draw an equivalence between Israel and ISIS.
"This is a vile comparison that betrays ignorance. This is pure anti-Semitism. The State of Israel is a life-loving country that operates according to principles of democracy, morality, and justice, and fights against terror groups whose sole objective is the murder and maiming of innocents."
"I call for the Labor party in Israel to sever all ties with its British namesake until party leader Jeremy Corbyn is replaced," Lapid concluded.
MKs slam Corbyn’s ‘anti-Semitic’ comparison of Israel to ISIS
In Labour’s Israeli sister party, opposition leader Isaac Herzog (Zionist Union) said: “Corbyn's suggestion of moral equivalence between Israel and ISIS is outrageous, unacceptable, and a betrayal of global Labour values.”
Herzog compared Corbyn to former Labour minister Ernest Bevin, who was foreign secretary when the State of Israel was established.
“Corbyn represents a consistent stance of hatred towards Israel, like the infamous Ernest Bevin, and like Bevin, who failed, Corbyn will fail, as well,” Herzog stated.
Earlier this year, amid allegations of anti-Semitism in Labour, Herzog invited Corbyn to see Israel himself; Corbyn declined.
Zionist Union, MK Itzik Shmuly said that “Corbyn has finally gone insane and his leadership shames Labour.”
Shmuly called on Labour MPs to oust Corbyn, because he “lost touch with reality,” and does not care about facts; rather Corbyn “is only interested in anti-Semitism and hatred for Israel.”
Are Democrats Finally Getting Tough on the Palestinian Authority?
In a remarkable turnaround, Democratic Party activists who are known to be pro-Palestinian are calling on their party’s platform committee to condemn the Palestinian Authority (PA).
Or am I misreading something?
Two pro-Palestinian members of Congress, Reps. Keith Ellison of Minnesota and Luis Gutierrez of Illinois, issued their call last week on the blog of J Street. It happens that Ellison and Gutierrez are members of that same platform committee, so it may seem strange that they are taking a public position before the committee has finished its deliberations. But apparently they made up their minds on the Palestinian issue before being appointed to the committee, and no testimony by witnesses or discussions with their fellow committee members will change their minds.
Here’s the key sentence in the Ellison-Gutierrez proposal: “Palestinians struggle under an unjust occupation that deprives them of the rights, opportunities and independence that they deserve.”
Three cheers for Ellison and Gutierrez, for courageously speaking out against the PA’s unjust occupation and denial of rights!
That must be what they mean, right?
After all, 99 percent of the Palestinians live under the rule of the PA (in Judea and Samaria) or Hamas (in Gaza). So if the “occupation” is “unjust,” then it is the PA and Hamas that are committing the injustice.
French police probing new Charlie Hebdo threats
French police are probing new threats against satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, the target of a jihadist attack in January 2015 that left 12 dead, a legal source said Wednesday.
The publication has received a series of threatening messages on its Facebook page since June 8, and on June 22 a hand-written letter was posted to the newsroom containing the same threats and the words "Allahu akbar" (God is greatest).
"No one has been arrested at this stage and investigations are ongoing," said the source.
Jihadist brothers Said and Cherif Kouachi gunned down eight Charlie staff as well as several others in and around the building in the attack on the magazine whose drawings of the founder of Islam Mohammed drew the fury of Muslims around the world.
Organizer of London Al-Quds Day Counter-Demonstration Says Pro-Israel Community Will No Longer Be Silent Amid Growing Anti-Zionism
A planned counter-demonstration against an upcoming “Al-Quds Day” march in London will convey the clear message that the country’s pro-Israel community won’t be silenced, an organizer of the rally told The Algemeiner on Wednesday.
Fiona Sharpe — co-chair of Sussex Friends of Israel (SFI), a British pro-Israel grassroots organization — said the annual Al-Quds Day event — which will take place on Sunday — “has displayed increasing levels of incitement and hate directed towards Israel which has become — most certainly in recent years — antisemitic.”
Over the last 10 years, Sharpe said the march has faced “no visible opposition to the lies and hatred” its supporters spew. SFI — along with its co-sponsors the Israel Advocacy Movement and the Zionist Federation — “felt it was time to voice our opposition and show that Israel has many friends in the UK and Europe.”
The Al-Quds Day rally is organized by the Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC) and ends in front of the US Embassy at Grosvenor Square. One of the more offensive activities by rally participants each year is the waving of the Hamas, Hezbollah and ISIS flags, which IHRC has failed to condemn. In the UK, Hamas and ISIS are designated terrorist organizations, while only Hezbollah’s “military wing” is classified as such.
Why the anti-Israel boycott movement is an immoral threat to peace
Israelis across the political spectrum well understand the chilling implications of the right of return, even if much of the international community does not. The BDS movement — whose website endorses the right of return as one of its three core goals — promotes that vision of a world without Israel. BDS dupes those of its supporters who genuinely seek a two-state solution into believing that they are working for peace. Indeed the BDS website doesn't even mention two states for two peoples among its goals. Even if Israel were to uproot every settlement, redivide Jerusalem, forfeit its claim to the holy places and return to the eight-mile-wide borders of the pre-1967 war, the BDS movement presumably would press on until Israel was erased from the map.
BDS activists brand Israel as an illegitimate colonialist state, a European transplant in the Middle East. This historical distortion erases 4,000 years of intimate connection between the Jewish people and the land. It ignores another factor of demography: A majority of Israel’s Jews don’t come from Europe, but from the Arab world, descendants of the nearly 1 million Jews effectively expelled from Arab countries where Jews lived for millenniums. Israelis call them the forgotten refugees.
As a means of applying economic pressure on Israel, BDS has failed. Despite the boycott, investments in Israel haven't diminished. Israel is far too integrated into the global economy and the high-tech sector to be isolated.
The attempt to turn Israel into a version of the old, apartheid South Africa will also fail because there are too many people around the world who admire Israel. Israel-lovers are no less passionate in defending the Jewish state than Israel-haters are in seeking to harm it.
The real threat of BDS, though, is more subtle than economic pressure. BDS creates an atmosphere in which Israel is solely to blame for the failure of peace between Jews and Arabs, and it negates the very idea of a nation-state for the Jewish people. BDS takes one of the world’s most complex and heartbreaking conflicts — between two traumatized peoples — and turns it into a morality play between darkness and light. The movement to criminalize Israel is itself a crime. Rather than Israel, it is the BDS movement that must be exposed and ostracized for its bigotry and hatred.
David Collier: Fighting BDS
To those undecided who listen on the side to the exchange, they argument has no context, they don’t understand the conflict. All they hear is that a settlement has been built, a wall has gone up, a child was arrested and then they hear you trying to justify it. There is no point. Don’t defend Israel’s actions post 1967. BDS is not an argument about post 1967 Israel. Attack BDS.
When you do this you come off script. In general, the people pushing BDS do not have a grounding in the conflict. Those that do, only take their information from one sided and extremely dubious sources.
I was at a BDS training event, and they role play with would be activists. It was informative because it was accurate. They know the pro-Israeli argument. So they deflect.
They have standard responses to accusations such as the one that suggests they are antisemitic. One line responses that are learnt parrot style. If they deflect this criticism and then regurgitate a few statistics about child prisoners, they are on their way to seeking new converts. They want you and expect you to use the argument that you can’t boycott Israel because it makes too many things. For them, this type of argument is great. You seem to be saying Israel is guilty but too powerful to boycott.
Confrontation is not something to be scared of. The *vast majority* of BDS activists would not last a minute in a discussion on the conflict. They have a leaflet that says Israel is guilty of genocide. That’s enough for them. Truth doesn’t matter. So it is easy to expose this ignorance by simply driving home the real narrative, talk facts and history.
When you argue, highlight the contradictions. Refugees are always a good one for this. Talk about the abuse of Palestinians in Lebanon. Over the last 70 years, those Palestinians remain the most abused. If bds is a humanitarian cause, why not push for Lebanon to give rights to those born inside its borders. Use the democracy arguments, there is no rational response to this.
Highlight the violence of the mandate, or the rejection of partition. Stick to the historical narrative, it supports Israel and exposes BDS. How many times have the Arabs had the chance for peace but rejected it? Why do BDS pick and choose which international rules are important and which ones are to be ignored? Why was ‘Palestine’ not created before 1967? Again. If it is post 1967, leave it alone. You are not arguing with someone over the solution to the conflict within a two state scenario.
So remember
  • BDS exists in the ‘destroy Israel’ paradigm
  • BDS has no central ‘brain’
  • BDS is contradictory and hypocritical
  • BDS needs to convert people, not tell the truth
  • BDS deflates the atmosphere for negotiations and peace.
  • BDS is anti-Israel, not pro-Palestinian
  • BDS is not supported by the historical narrative – the opposite is truth.
Pro-Israel members of NY food co-op suspended over BDS spat
A popular Brooklyn cooperative grocery store that has been fighting about Israel boycott efforts for eight years reportedly suspended four pro-Israel members for interrupting a meeting more than a year ago.
According to the Brooklyn Paper, four Park Slope Food Co-op members have been suspended for a year for interrupting an April 2015 presentation by members who were calling for a boycott of SodaStream, the Israeli seltzer-machine company that at the time had a factory in a West Bank settlement.
At the 2015 meeting attended by hundreds of members, the four now-suspended members went to the front of the room and unplugged the projector that was displaying an image of an Israeli soldier and a Palestinian that they believed was propagandistic.
The four were subjected to a disciplinary hearing in April and found guilty of uncooperative behavior.
Al Jazeera Uses Classic Canard to Promote Jihad Against Jews
Nearly 80 years ago – decades before Israel was established as a Jewish state – then-Grand Mufti of Jerusalem Haj Amin Al Husseini (who subsequently allied with Adolf Hitler) embarked on a campaign of incitement to foment a jihad against Jews.
His focal point? The area near the Temple Mount, Judaism's holiest site, and more specifically, the Western Wall — the last remnant of the Jewish Holy Temple compound. The canard upon which he based his campaign was that Jews were planning to destroy or take over Muslim holy sites. His battle cry? "Defend [Muslim] Holy Places." The result? Anti-Jewish pogroms carried out across Palestine, with massacres in Hebron and Safed that killed, mutilated or wounded hundreds of people. (For more details, see here.)
Haj Amin al Husseini's battle cry was so successful in igniting a jihad that it became the go-to slogan and theme to promote anti-Jewish violence in the Middle East. During Jordan's 19-year, illegal occupation of Jerusalem, Jews were barred from visiting their holy sites and the theme became a non-issue, but since Israel's recapture of the area in 1967, it has been used successfully by consecutive Palestinian leaders and has become part and parcel of the campaign to separate Jewish people from their holiest site. (For more details, see here.)
Journalists are under tremendous pressure from the Palestinian Authority and Abbas to adopt words that reject the history of the area to promote Arab/Muslim supremacy there. For example, a "media advisory" put out in November 2014 by the PLO Negotiation Affairs Department warned journalists not to refer to the site as "disputed" and to reject any non-Muslim terminology in regard to the site as invalid.
The theme is part of an aggressive Palestinian campaign to turn public opinion against Jewish history and rights. It is one that reverses the perpetrator and victim. Muslim perpetrators of violence to deny non-Muslims their freedom of visitation are now the victims, while Jewish history, rights and attachment to their holiest site are pronounced null and void.
‘Jewish Voice for Peace’ Repeats anti-Israel Clichés; Post Provides a Platform
The JVP head foists additional falsehoods on readers by insinuating that Arabs in Israel live under apartheid-like conditions. Yet, Israeli Arabs serve on Israel's Supreme Court, have command ranks in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) and have their own political list in Israel's legislature, the Knesset. By contrast, the PA—in accordance with its penal code—kills any Palestinian suspected of selling land to Jews. Ezra Nawi—a BDS supporter who has been called “extraordinary” by JVP, which has raised money for him—was caught on camera acknowledging that he helps the PA kill Palestinians by providing information on those selling land to Jews (“Israeli leftist brags turned in Palestinians who sell land to Jews, risking their death and torture,” Legal Insurrection, Jan. 9, 2016).
Casting all of the blame for lack of peace on Israel, Vilkomerson tells Post readers that “BDS is a powerful way to encourage the state to act.” This omits that Palestinian leaders have rejected Israeli and U.S. offers of a “two-state solution” in exchange for peace with the Jewish state on a number of occasions, including 2000 at Camp David, 2001 at Taba and 2008 after the Annapolis conference. More recently, PA officials rejected U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry's 2014 “framework” to restart negotiations and a similar proposal by U.S. Vice President Joe Biden in March 2016.
Perhaps the reason why Vilkomerson omits this Palestinian rejectionism is that, as noted above, her organization and its allies don't want a “two-state solution.” That's not what BDS is about. And Vilkomerson—her obfuscation notwithstanding—can't mask that.
Her opinion piece appeared in The Post's “Post Everything” blog. Is the online news and commentary world more than a little like television's “vast wasteland” years, as some have suggested? Vilkomerson's JVP propaganda at “Post Everything” suggests as much.
After CAMERA alerted Israel's government press office (GPO) to the objectionable clip, the GPO asked AJ to remove it. We will see if and when that happens.
NPR's Conflict of Interest No Conflict, NPR Decides
Call it the one-day news story that should have been a blockbuster. The Associated Press reported that “a group the White House recently identified as a key surrogate in selling the Iran nuclear deal gave NPR [National Public Radio] $100,000 last year to help it report on the pact and related issues….”
That group was the Ploughshares Fund, which says it seeks to reduce and eventually eliminate international nuclear stockpiles. Ploughshares contributed “at least $700,000” to NPR to fund the network's coverage of national security issues since 2005, AP's Bradley Klapper wrote. (See “Group that helped sell Iran nuke deal also funded media,” AP, May 20, 2016.)
The chief of staff of one U.S. senator who had opposed the Iran agreement told CAMERA the Ploughshares revelation probably was not “the smoking gun” that finally would prompt congressional examination of NPR's performance. Public broadcasters are required by the Telecommunications Act to demonstrate “strict adherence to objectivity and balance in all programs or series of programs of a controversial nature.” Congress has not enforced this statutory provision since the act's passage in 1967 and amendment in 1991.
Something more in the way of public attention apparently would be needed to give the revelation legislative traction, the chief of staff said.
That “something more” might be found in a close reading of NPR Ombudsman Elizabeth Jensen's account of her review, “On Ethics: Did Ploughshares Grant Skew NPR's Iran Deal Coverage?” posted at NPR's Web site May 27, 2016. Her short answer was “no.”
Jewish Poker Pro Reveals Recording of Antisemitic Comments From Fellow Players
A Jewish pro poker player exposed antisemitic statements made by fellow professionals in an audiotape obtained and published by the New York Daily News on Sunday.
Jaclynn Moskow said she was in Pittsburgh in November 2014 taping an episode of the popular TV show “Poker Night in America,” when host Chris Hanson, a professional poker player, told her, “The thing about ‘Poker Night’ that makes it so great is that there are no Jews. Every other show on TV has Jews.”
Moskow, 31, later confronted Hanson over his bigotry and recorded their conversation. According to a transcript of their talk, Moskow told Hanson, “You remember the other night…when I was telling all you… You guys were so nice and how great it was because you were from the Midwest, and you said like, ‘ah, yeah that the key was that, you know there are no Jews on this show,’ right?…I just wanted to let you know I’m Jewish.”
Hanson told the South Florida native he “didn’t mean anything by it” and apologized for his remarks, but later claimed he hadn’t said them.
“I deny I made any statement that could reasonably be construed as disparaging of any race, creed, color or religion,” Hanson said in a statement released by his attorney, Linda Kenney Baden. When told that Hanson’s conversation with Moskow was recorded, Baden insisted, “The statement stands.”
British Jews denounce neo-Nazi 'Miss Hitler' pageant
A Scottish woman who said she turned to neo-Nazism after “the Jewish propaganda became too obvious to ignore” was named Miss Hitler 2016.
National Action, a British white supremacist group, announced the winners of its contest on Twitter and on its blog earlier this week because Facebook removed the group’s page in May, shortly after the contest was announced.
Female supporters were invited to “submit a short interview for the site under a pseudonym, accompanied by photos in the T-shirts we sent them.”
According to the group, the contest was designed to raise awareness of its female supporters, who “rarely get much spotlight or recognition.”
The winner, a brunette who was not identified and appears in photos with the lower half of her face covered and performing the Nazi 'Heil Hitler' salute, said in a Q&A on the site that she “didn’t want to believe that the Jews are the enemy, as I was brought up to believe that they are very similar to Christians.”
US publisher to give ‘Mein Kampf’ proceeds to survivors
A Boston-based publishing company has decided to donate proceeds from Adolf Hitler’s infamous manifesto “Mein Kampf” to a local organization that works with aging Holocaust survivors.
The move comes after publisher Houghton Mifflin Harcourt was criticized by Jewish advocates for its plans to donate proceeds and royalties from the book to Boston-area cultural organizations, and not necessarily to those that combat anti-Semitism.
Following the backlash, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt partnered with Boston-based Combined Jewish Philanthropies to determine “how best to provide aid directly to the victims of the horrific events of the Holocaust,” Andrew Russell, the publisher’s director of corporate social responsibility, said in a statement.
Moving forward, the proceeds from “Mein Kampf” will be donated to Jewish Family & Children’s Service of Greater Boston for “direct support of the health and human services needs of [Holocaust] survivors,” Russell said.
Jewish lecturer attacked in London for carrying ‘schlep’ bag
A Jewish sociology lecturer carrying a book bag with the word ‘schlep’ on the side has been told to “f*** off back to Israel with the other Yids,” in what may be the first instance of anti-Semitic abuse in the wake of the Brexit vote.
Natalie Pitimson, a senior lecturer at the University of Brighton, on Tuesday said the verbal assault was made on board a packed commuter train travelling through central London at rush-hour, but that no-one reacted, “despite almost certainly having heard”.
Of the bag, she said: “I bought it from the Jewish Museum in North London because I liked it. The word ‘schlep’ written on the side perfectly describes my regular hour-long trek through central London… On the train I noticed a lad and his girlfriend looking at me and my bag, which was on my lap. When they spotted me looking back at them, he told me to ‘f*** off back to Israel with the other Yids.’ Nobody else in the carriage reacted.”
French high court reaffirms sentence for Holocaust-denying prof.
France’s highest court affirmed a one-year prison sentence for a professor who questioned the Holocaust’s veracity.
The Court of Cassation rejected the appeal last week of Vincent Reynouard, who has since fled the country and is presumed escaped. It was the last of several appeals by Reynouard to the sentence imposed last year by a Caen court over a 2014 video in which he said the Holocaust may not have happened and called state commemorations of the deportation of French Jews ”manipulation of memory,” France 3 reported.
Reynouard has lost his license to teach in the public education system over repeated Holocaust denials.
The court's ruling came amid protests over a Paris university readmitting a student who had been expelled for anti-Semitic rhetoric.
Earlier this month, the Sciences Po University agreed to readmit a student, Amira Jumaa, who is under disciplinary review for writing hateful remarks about Jews on Facebook last year. Jumaa, a citizen of Kuwait, also was fired over the posts by the French consulate in New York, where she was working in an internship.
Sciences Po allowed Jumaa to continue to study at the institution while its disciplinary board, which had suspended Jumaa last year, decides on her appeal of the sanctions.
Belgian court upholds kosher ritual slaughter rights
The Constitutional Court of Belgium ruled on Wednesday that shechita, kosher ritual slaughter, is legally permissible and that the practice can continue.
According to the court, restricting shechita by insisting that animals be stunned before slaughter would contravene Belgium’s constitution requiring freedom of religion to be upheld.
Several months ago a number of Belgian parliamentarians, including the Flemish Minister for Animal Welfare Ben Weyts, began a campaign against shechita and demanded that ritual slaughter not be exempted from the requirement to stun animals before slaughter. Animals rights activists in many countries have fought to ensure that all livestock taken to slaughter are stunned, but Jewish law prohibits stunning and make shechita impossible.
The practice is currently illegal in two EU member states – Sweden and Denmark – as well as three other non-EU countries in Western Europe: Norway, Switzerland and Iceland. EU members Finland, Austria and Estonia enforce strict supervision of shechita, which some Jews there say make it nearly impossible.
A campaigns to ban religious slaughter has also taken place in the UK, while opposition to schechita led to a ban by the Netherlands in 2010, although it was overturned by the Dutch Senate in 2012.
Swiss firm Doodle buys Israel’s Meekan for undisclosed amount
Doodle, an online scheduler and a subsidiary of the Swiss media group Tamedia, has bought Tel Aviv-based startup Meekan, a developer of a chatbot that acts as a virtual scheduling assistant, for an undisclosed amount.
In response to a voice request, Meekan’s bot automatically matches up the schedules of all members of a group chat within seconds and proposes prioritized dates. The Meekan chatbot is adaptive and remembers the earlier preferences and practices of its users to help optimally plan and adjust schedules, Doodle said in a statement posted on Tamedia’s website.
“Unique to this industry,” Meekan is completely driven by artificial intelligence, with no humans involved behind the scenes, Doodle said.
“The integration of Meekan enables Doodle’s next step forward,” Christoph Brand, head of Digital Division at Tamedia, said in the statement. “The chatbot as an intelligent virtual assistant allows fast scheduling without having to consult one’s own calendar. It has definitely enormous potential.”
Germany to Lease Advanced Israeli Drones for 600M Euros
Germany has reached a preliminary agreement to lease up to five advanced drones from Israel for 600 million euros.
The deal, which was signed with the state-owned Israel Air Industries last week, stipulates that the large Heron TP (Eitan) drones will be initially sent to Germany to be made operational and deployed in 2018, Ynet reported.
General Volker Wieker, the German chief of staff, said that he preferred the Israeli-made drones to the American-made Predator and Raptor drones, which were designed to destroy targets from the air.
Notably, Israel has not previously confirmed that its drones can be armed to attack targets on the ground. A previous deal between Israel and Germany was specifically for reconnaissance drones.
Israeli companies handpicked by White House for GES 2016
Six Israeli companies were handpicked by the US State Department and White House to take part in the 2016 Global Entrepreneurship Summit at Stanford University in California, June 22-24.
Two additional Israeli enterprises were chosen to present as part of GES+, focusing on youth and women entrepreneurs: Loop Organization, founded in Nazareth by lawyer and computer engineer Wasim Abu Salem to teach computer science and coding to Israeli Arab children ages 7-16; and Toya-Play a Difference from Anat Shperling and Yifat Anzelevich, which uses mobile games to tell children the life stories of remarkable women.
Hosted by President Barack Obama, GES attracted more than 1,000 global delegates. Each of the world’s six regions was represented by 100 entrepreneurs chosen from about 5,000 applications from more than 150 countries.
Super hybrid car is heading down the road
Why do hybrid and electric cars account for less than 3 percent of the 89 million cars sold every year across the world? It’s mainly because hybrids are expensive and 100% electric cars can’t go far between battery charges.
While others scramble to design smaller, lighter combustion engines, or better fuel-cell and battery technologies, an Israeli startup is totally reinventing the combustion engine to power the hybrid car of the future – a smart electric vehicle.
Chief Marketing Officer and cofounder Gal Fridman tells ISRAEL21c that after just two years in business, Aquarius Engines has filed three patents and signed a deal to test the Aquarius engine in a major European automaker’s concept car at the beginning of 2017.
Because Aquarius uses so little fuel to power the engine and charge the battery, drivers would have to fill the 50-liter (13-gallon) tank only about every five or six weeks.
Whereas conventional automobiles can go 600 kilometers (372 miles) on 50 liters of gasoline, and an electric car can go 350 kilometers on a single charge, a car fitted with the Aquarius engine has a range of 1,200 kilometers (745 miles) per tank.
Soul singer Joss Stone heads to Tel Aviv
Soul singer Joss Stone is joining the stream of singers coming to Israel this summer, with an intimate show on July 25 in Tel Aviv’s Barby Club.
Stone, who started her career at the age of 13 on a British talent show, had her first album, “The Soul Sessions,” go platinum in Britain. She has recorded seven albums and won several Brit Awards and a Grammy in 2007.
Her latest album, “Water for Your Soul,” came out last July and included a range of musical genres, from reggae, hip-hop and soul to gospel and world music.
Focused on love and relationships, a familiar topic for 29-year-old Stone, the album is considered to be something of a comeback for the young singer, who received lukewarm reviews for several of her previous releases.



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