On Yom Kippur, we examine our sins, but defending Israel isn’t one of them.
As we approach Yom Kippur, the holiest day on the Jewish calendar, we highly recommend a thoughtful meditation on the Jewish culture of self-criticism by Ruth Wisse recently published in the Wall St. Journal.Cruz, Ros-Lehtinen protest that UN resolution would 'delegitimize Israel'
Here’s an excerpt:
Jews rightly take pride in their culture of self-accountability—before the Ultimate Judge and justly established human authorities. This culture has created and sustained a remarkably resilient people. Lamenting the excesses of the current American electoral cycle, the columnist Ira Stoll imagines how much richer the country’s politics would be if “this spirit of self-examination were exported from the Jewish religion into the rest of American culture.” If democracy requires the patient improvement of life in a community, nothing furthers that goal better than the practice of individual and collective self-scrutiny.
But the millennial-long history of Jewish self-restraint also stands as a warning. It is all very well to focus on overcoming your failings. Yet the search for moral perfection can also render individuals, and nations, prey to those who believe in conquest rather than self-conquest and who join in holding you accountable for their misdeeds. The same confessional posture, praiseworthy when standing before the Perfect Judge, becomes blameworthy when adopted before an enemy that has you before a rigged tribunal.
In the 20th century, some modern European thinkers and political leaders began singling out the Jews for their alleged racial or religious or social culpabilities. Many Jews felt obliged to answer apologetically for these supposed failings, instead of exposing the evil ideology that had chosen them for its target. Jewish Marxists, for example, blamed Jewish capitalists and bourgeoisie, even though defamation was leveled equally at Jewish professionals, artisans, journalists and paupers.
No sooner had the politics of Jew-blame reached its genocidal apotheosis in Europe than it was taken up in the Middle East. Rather than accepting the principle of co-existence and concentrating on improving the lives of their own subjects, Arab leaders refused Jews the right to their homeland in a war that they, the Arab leaders, had initiated. Forcing almost a million Jews from their ancient communities in Arab lands, the same leaders blamed Israel for Arab refugees whom they themselves refused to resettle.
This calumny is by now the basis of political coalitions not only at the United Nations and in Europe but on campuses here in the U.S. So ingrained are the assumptions of Jew-blame that newspapers will often devote more coverage to the shooting of one Palestinian Arab by an Israeli, often unintentionally or in self-defense, than to the murders of Jewish civilians by Arab and Muslim terrorists. What such belligerents do with the aim of eliminating the Jewish state, friends sometimes do in the name of holding Jews to “a higher moral standard.” And, as previously, some Jews join the blame-shifting ranks, castigating the Jewish state for engaging in self-defense rather than apology.
Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla., sent a letter this week to the Executive Board of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization protesting a resolution the U.S. lawmakers say is part of a wider effort to delegitimize Israel.Palestinian soccer team honors Jerusalem shooter who killed two Israelis
"The United Nations' obsessive hostility towards Israel will be on display yet again this week as UNESCO considers another blatantly biased resolution that unjustly singles out our close ally Israel with false accusations and criticism, and attempts to erase the specific deep-rooted, historical connection of Jews and Christians to Jerusalem, Israel's eternal capital," Cruz's office said Tuesday.
The Texas senator and Florida congresswoman were joined in their letter by 39 of their congressional colleagues.
"For thousands of years, Jerusalm [sic] has played a defining, central role in the history and identity of the Jewish people," Cruz's office said. "For Christians, Jerusalem is a seminal spiritual site. This resolution flies in the face of, among other things, science as recent archeological excavations, notably in the City of David, have revealed incontrovertible, physical evidence that reaffirms Jewish and Christian ties to the holy city of Jerusalem. Members of the UNESCO Executive Board should vote against this intentional campaign to deny these historical truths, rewrite the history of Jerusalem, and delegitimize Israel."
Ros-Lehtinen's office added Tuesday that the proposed U.N. resolution's "ill intent" is clear
"[T]o deny the historical record of the Jewish peoples' connections to their holiest city and to imply that Jerusalem is inconsequential to Jews and Christians, with the intent of laying the groundwork for additional UN efforts to delegitimize Israel and undermine its status as the capital of the Jewish State," he office said.
"Furthermore, this irresponsible and reprehensible resolution falsely lays the blame for the violence on Israel since last October while ignoring the acts of terror and violence that are being incited by the Palestinian Authority and Abu Mazen. UNESCO was created to build intercultural understanding yet, as is the case across the entire UN system, intolerance and intentionally corrosive behavior on the part of many of the organization's members has undermined its original mission and only further underscores the need for drastic reform throughout the entire UN system," they added.
And anti-Israel activists want Israel kicked out of FIFA!
On Sunday, October 9, 2016, we reported how Palestinians celebrate murder of two Israelis in Jerusalem shooting attack.
Video has been released of the “heroic” drive by shooting being celebrated:
Those celebrations included approval and encouragement of further attacks from both Fatah and Hamas news outlets, a phone call of congratulations from the political head of Hamas to the killer’s family, dancing outside the home of the killer, and the killer’s 14-year old daughter praising the attack.
Israeli police closed the candy store owned by the killer’s family, so I guess they’ll have to find another source of goodies to hand out.
And now this, a Palestinian soccer team holding a banner honoring the killer.
Oh, by the way, the Palestinians and anti-Israel activists want Israel kicked out of FIFA because security checks of Palestinian soccer teams disrupt their ability to play. Let’s see, soccer team honors terrorist killer who conducted shooting spree that killed two Israelis — certainly no security concerns with those fine young men.
Peres to Begin in 1978: I’m against an Arafat state
The Israeli statesman Shimon Peres, who died late last month at the age of 93, once told former prime minister and founder of the Likud party Menachem Begin that he was against a Palestinian state and that “Jordan is also Palestine.”Newsweek Sugarcoats Anti-Israel Course at Berkeley
Though he served as defense minister and was considered a hawk in his early years in politics, rejecting any compromise with hostile Arab states, Peres later became the face of the country’s peace movement, carrying on the legacy of slain prime minister Yitzhak Rabin who was his partner in working on the Oslo Accords with the Palestinians led by Yasser Arafat.
Peres had said he was converted to dovishness after 1977, when Egyptian president Anwar Sadat made a historic visit to Jerusalem, leading to the first Arab-Israeli peace treaty. Peres gained international recognition for his Nobel Peace Prize, and late in life, became a virtual celebrity as he traveled around the globe preaching a message of peace and coexistence.
In newly declassified minutes of an August 31, 1978 meeting once labeled “top secret” and published by Haaretz on Tuesday, Peres, who was then head of the Israeli opposition, and prime minister Begin discuss the upcoming Camp David conference where, days later, Begin would sign on to a framework for a peace deal with Egypt that would change history.
The meeting was also attended by the then head of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee Moshe Arens, also of the Likud.
Ahead of the conference, Begin had invited Peres for a sit-down on the key issues they expected would be brought up at Camp David, including Palestinian autonomy, Jerusalem, the military presence in the West Bank, the 1967 lines and settlements in the Sinai Peninsula.
“Jordan is also Palestine… I’m against two Arab countries and against another Palestinian country, against an Arafat state. Today 50 percent of the inhabitants of Jordan are Palestinians and that is the Palestinian state… say our partner is the Jordanians and not the Palestinians,” Peres tells Begin, adding that, one day, “there will be a need for a partition because we won’t know what to do with the Arabs.”
Newsweek Includes a One-Sided Video Featuring Hadweh's AttorneyAIPAC: Obama Administration Has Opened Door to Business With Iran’s Top Terrorist Group
Newsweek’s accompanying video featuring Hadweh’s lawyer from Palestine Legal is also problematic. The lawyer frames the issue as one of academic freedom and “open inquiry.” Putting falsehoods in a course catalogue, however, does not convert them into academic theories. While she calls the course a “vigorous critical look at Israeli state policies,” it clearly goes far beyond that. Her justification of anti-Zionism as an “ideology of people who are seeking justice and equality for Palestinians” whitewashes the anti-Semitism inherent the “anti-Zionist” movement. Her claim that those who “conflate anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism” are responsible for the increase in anti-Semitism is classic victim-blaming.
Hadweh claims that he designed the course because “there was no course that, in his view, fairly addressed the situation in Israel and the Palestinian territories.” With Hatem Bazian, a co-founder of the rabidly anti-Israel group Students for Justice in Palestine and the sponsor of Hadweh’s course on the Berkeley faculty, that claim is difficult to believe. (In fact, according to congressional testimony, SJP even has links to terrorist groups.) If it is true, however, perhaps that is because Hadweh’s vision of what is “fair” is anything but that.
This slanted article does a poor job of relating the controversy over the class, choosing instead to portray the class's facilitator as a hero.
In a memo issued on Monday, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) said the Treasury Department’s move to allow Iran greater access to the US dollar “accelerates a pattern of undeserved concessions to Tehran as it simultaneously escalates its terrorist activities, ballistic missile tests, and human rights violations.”Russia to hold military drills in Egypt this month
Furthermore, AIPAC said, “any long-term success of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) depends on Iran understanding that any violation will lead to swift, certain response. Undeserved concessions going beyond the JCPOA only reinforce Tehran’s propensity to violate its international obligations and ultimately undermine the JCPOA itself.”
AIPAC called on Congress to “press the administration to clarify its policy toward entities controlled in whole by sanctioned entities like the IRGC.”
The administration’s actions vis-à-vis Iran, AIPAC went on to say, “reflect an opaqueness in US decision-making and an emerging pattern of unwarranted leniency.”
“Congress and the president must take corrective steps now and in January to stop undeserved concessions to Iran and hold Tehran accountable,” the memo stated.
Russia and Egypt will hold joint military drills involving airborne troops on Egyptian soil for the first time this month, the Russian defence ministry said Tuesday.Hillary In Leaked Email: Saudi Arabia And Qatar Are Funding ISIS
“The joint Russian-Egyptian drills will happen in mid-October 2016 on the territory of Egypt,” it said, without specifying their start date.
The drills, called “Protectors of Friendship-2016”, will include 500 troops, 15 planes and helicopters and 10 military hardware units, the ministry said, describing the exercises as “anti-terrorist”.
“The airborne delivery by parachute of several Russian airborne troops’ сombat vehicles to the desert climate of Egypt will occur for the first time in history,” the ministry said.
Last year Russia and Egypt held their first-ever joint naval exercises in the Mediterranean, which included the Black Sea fleet’s flagship Moskva missile cruiser.
Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton sent an email to her campaign chairman John Podesta in 2014, who was then-counselor to President Barack Obama, that said Saudi Arabia and Qatar are both giving financial and logistical support to the Islamic State and other extremist Sunni groups, according to a recent Wikileaks release.U.S. Chess Star’s Petition Against Holding Women’s Tournament in Iran Exceeds 15k Signatures
Clinton sent the email on August 17, 2014 to Podesta. It was an eight-point plan to defeat ISIS in Iraq and Syria. Clinton’s email said that the United States should support Kurdish forces on the ground with U.S. military advisers and avoid the use of a conventional ground operation.
“While this military/para-military operation is moving forward, we need to use our diplomatic and more traditional intelligence assets to bring pressure on the governments of Qatar and Saudi Arabia, which are providing clandestine financial and logistic support to ISIL and other radical Sunni groups in the region,” Clinton wrote.
The former secretary of state added: “This effort will be enhanced by the stepped up commitment in the [Kurdish Regional Government]. The Qataris and Saudis will be put in a position of balancing policy between their ongoing competition to dominate the Sunni world and the consequences of serious U.S. pressure.”
Iran is forcing women to cover their hair at the next world chess championship—and the reigning American female chess champion is circulating a petition in protest. Nazí Paikidze-Barnes, 22, exceeded her initial goal of collecting 15,000 signatures on Tuesday, one week after her appeal was first posted online.Islamic Researcher Muhammad Al-Tawbah: Jews, West behind Islamophobia, Gay Rights
The petition calls on the World Chess Federation (FIDE)—which “rejects discriminatory treatment for national, political, racial, social or religious reasons or on account of sex” in its handbook—to reconsider its choice of Iran as tournament host. Paikidze-Barnes, who authored the document, declared she will be boycotting the contest “even if it means missing one of the most important competitions of my career.”
“Some consider a hijab part of culture,” Paikidze-Barnes said in an Instagram post announcing her decision. “But, I know that a lot of Iranian women are bravely protesting this forced law daily and risking a lot by doing so. That’s why I will NOT wear a hijab and support women’s oppression.”
She has been harshly criticized by prominent officials involved with the chess federation and by Iranian media outlets, and more recently has been the target of op-eds in several prominent news outlets. In turn, some Muslim women’s rights activists pushed back in support of Paikidze-Barnes, with former Wall Street Journal reporter Asra Q. Nomani describing one of the op-eds as “tragic because it uses women to tell other women to shut up.” Nomani wrote against “Iran’s hijab fetish” in The Washington Post last week.
Islamic researcher Muhammad Al-Tawbah said, in a recent TV interview, that the Jews, whose "interests are threatened" by the presence of the Muslim immigrants in Europe, "have a great interest in causing aversion of Muslims and in banning a Muslim from owning a newspaper, for example.
"Speaking on the Saudi Al-Majd TV channel on August 21, Al-Tawbah said: "[The Jews] are now peddling their suffering. Six million were burnt... Fine, what are you doing in Palestine?"
He also complained that the West supports homosexual and women's rights in the Arab world.
"They give women rights that were not prescribed by Allah – a Muslim woman rules in her home more than Obama rules America," Al-Tawbah said.
Detroit Friday Sermon: The Pro-Israel Lobby Uses the United States as a Cash Cow
Detroit Friday Sermon on U.S. Military Aid Package to Israel: The Pro-Israel Lobby Uses the United States as a Cash Cow
In a Friday sermon in Detroit, Michigan, Iraqi-born Shiite Imam Hassan Qazwini said that the U.S. administration was "bowing to the pro-Israeli lobby," which was using the United States as a "cash cow" or a "farm."
In the sermon, which was delivered at the Az-Zahraa Islamic Center and posted on YouTube on September 16, Qazwini praised former Democratic contender Bernie Sanders – "an honorable man, even though he is a Jew" – and said that he "was made to pay the price" by losing the campaign because he refused "to sell America for the interest of Israel."
New Study: Number of Antisemitic Incidents Targeting London Jews Far Higher Than Official Statistics
A new study that exposed high levels of antisemitism faced by London’s ultra-Orthodox community on a daily basis is “just the tip of the iceberg,” the head of a Jewish neighborhood watch organization in the British capital said.Anti-Semitic Attacks an Everyday Fact For London’s Orthodox Jews
Speaking about the research conducted by Stamford Hill Shomrim — which recorded an average of eight antisemitic incidents per week over the past month in London, far higher than official police records showing two to three such occurrences per month — Rabbi Herschel Gluck, the president of the group, stated, “It has long been said that antisemitism is underreported in the Charedi Jewish community, which is the most visible segment of the Jewish community, but these figures are nevertheless shocking.”
The British Home Office, Gluck went on to say, “must take urgent action to work directly with Stamford Hill Shomrim concerning the Charedi Jewish community — a community with a distinct ethos, sensitivities and structures, to enhance and improve the reporting of hate crimes.”
The antisemitic incidents detailed in the study included three assaults, two threats to kill, eight threats of violence, eighteen cases of verbal abuse and one occurrence of criminal damage.
One of last month’s incidents — as reported by The Algemeiner — saw an 11-year-old Jewish boy walking home from school in London’s Hackney neighborhood forced to remove his kippa by a gang of bullies.
As reported by The Algemeiner, antisemitic incidents in the UK jumped in the first half of 2016, with the Jewish community being targeted on an average of three times per day.
Daily acts of physical and verbal abuse against members of London’s Orthodox Jewish community have become commonplace, according to a new month-long study.Bay Area Jews meet anti-Semitic fliers with Rosh Hashanah ones
Stamford Hill Shomrim, a neighbourhood-watch scheme in north London, has released data showing there’s at least one anti-Semitic attack on identifiable Jewish people every day in the capital.
Victims range from young children to mothers with their babies and the incidents recorded in one 28-day period included three assaults, two threats to kill, eight threats of violence, 18 cases of verbal abuse, and one incident of criminal damage.
A summary of the report includes these specific attacks:
- An eight-year-old boy in Haringey (N15) who was assaulted near his home by a male who told him he was a “stupid Jew”.
- A 28-year-old mother boarded a bus with her two children, aged six months and four years old, when a suspect deliberately blocked her path, telling her “I’m not going to move for you, you Jewish people are selfish, you Jewish people are bad”.
- Three Jewish women who were chased through Hackney (N16) by perpetrators shouting “the Jewish people are rich, horrible Jewish people, give us your money”.
- An 11-year-old boy in Hackney who was told he would be beaten up if he didn’t remove his skullcap.
- A 55-year-old Jewish woman in Hackney was asked if she covered her hair because Hitler had shaved it off, before the perpetrator made a Nazi salute.
- A 38-year-old man who had his religious hat (shtreimel) thrown on the ground as he left a synagogue in Stamford Hill.
Five Jewish families left about 600 Happy Rosh Hashanah fliers on cars at a Bay Area Rapid Transit station in response to anti-Semitic fliers left in the same station.Arizona teen planned terror attack on local JCC
The NBC Bay Area affiliate reported Monday that the anonymous fliers at the BART station parking lot in Lafayette, near San Francisco, two days before the holiday were left by members of Congregation B’nai Tikvah in Walnut Creek, California.
“We felt like we needed to respond and show that hate is not a dominant voice,” Rebecca Bauer-Kahan told NBC. “We wanted to put out fliers that show we are part of a loving community.”
The original fliers discovered on Sept. 28 called the Jewish community “serpents” and said Jews should be separated from children. A man wearing a Santa hat had been seen leaving them on cars. They were believed to have been printed and distributed by a local man who runs an anti-Semitic blog that targets members of the Jewish community in Lafayette.
A BART spokesperson told NBC Bay Area that leafleting is permitted under free speech statutes.
An Arizona teenager has pleaded guilty to plotting an attack on government buildings and the Tucson Jewish Community Center.Plan to Turn Schindler Factory Into Museum Reportedly Hits Snags Over Finances, Local Opposition
Mahin Khan, 18, pleaded guilty on Monday in Maricopa County Superior Court to charges of terrorism, conspiracy to commit terrorism and conspiracy to commit misconduct involving weapons, according to reports.
Khan reportedly struck a plea bargain with the Arizona Attorney General’s Office under which he will serve a prison term of at least five years and no more than 10 years and three months, as opposed to the life sentence that he could have received. He will be sentenced on Nov. 4.
Khan was arrested in his parents’ home on July 1 and has been held in prison without bail for fear he would flee to Syria or Pakistan. He pleaded not guilty at the time.
His parents have said that Khan is autistic and not capable of carrying out the terror attacks he had planned.
The FBI told the court that Khan had described himself in an email as an “American jihadist” who supports the Islamic State. In contact with undercover FBI agents, Khan said he wanted to carry out “lone jihadist” attacks that would kill hundreds of people in Arizona.
Jaroslav Novak — the head of the Shoah and Oskar Schindler Memorial Endowment Memorial Foundation — was quoted by The Guardian as saying, “This is the only Nazi concentration camp in the Czech Republic that is still standing in its original building. You cannot allow it and the whole history of Schindler to disappear. I have been fighting for this for 20 years. But people are just not interested in it.”Comics hero wants a Superman who faces his Jewish roots
The factory is where, in 1944, Oskar Schindler brought 1,200 Jewish workers and was able to keep them safe until the end of World War II — a story portrayed in director Steven Spielberg’s 1993 Academy Award-winning film “Schindler’s List.”
Opposition was explained by the Guardian as follows:
The industrialist was a Czechoslovakian citizen from the then mainly German-speaking Sudetenland region who spied for the Abwehr, the Nazi foreign intelligence service, before the territory was formally annexed by Hitler under the 1938 Munich agreement, and who later joined the Nazi party.
Few Czechs had heard of his later wartime exploits before they were depicted by Hollywood. Even today, many recall Schindler, who died in 1974 and is honored along with his wife, Emilie, at Jerusalem’s Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum, by referring to his prewar local reputation as a “gauner” (German for crook) who was notorious for heavy drinking, womanizing and gambling debts.
Jitka Gruntova — a former Communist MP and author of a book about Schindler — was quoted as calling him “a traitor and a war criminal.”
“I have found no evidence of Schindler saving prisoners,” she said. “I’ve come to the conclusion he was only saving himself — mostly by writing a postwar synopsis of his alleged activities. I don’t doubt there are certain witness statements in his favor but these are, as far as I can tell, made by people who belonged to the inner circle around him.”
Historian Radoslav Fikejz chalked such skepticism up to expulsion of German-speaking Czechs after the war and the decades of one-party Communist rule the country experienced between 1948 and 1990.
The Jewish history of Superman is well known. Jewish writer Jerry Siegel — who co-created the iconic comic book character with Jewish illustrator Joe Shuster — once said he conceived of Superman after reading about the “slaughter of helpless, oppressed Jews” in Nazi Europe.Hundreds of Israelis gather to pray for people of war-torn Syria
The character’s original name from his home planet of Krypton is Kal-El, which sounds very Hebrew (the Hebrew suffix “El,” which comes at the end of many biblical names, like Rachel or Daniel, is an ancient word for God). And in one of the earliest Superman comics, the Man of Steel fulfills a very Jewish fantasy: He captures both Hitler and Stalin and brings them to the League of Nations, where they are tried for war crimes.
More recent iterations of the Superman franchise haven’t alluded to these and other Jewish roots — but famed comic book writer Frank Miller wants to change that.
Miller, whose is known for his work on influential series such as “Sin City,” “300” and “The Dark Knight Returns,” told Inverse at New York’s Comic-Con on Friday that Superman needs to “confront his Jewish roots again.”
“He has a history in World War II, and I’d like to put him there again,” Miller said, alluding to Siegel’s origin story. “Superman needs to confront his Jewish roots, and I’d like to write that. I’d like to have him face a death camp.”
Some 1,500 Israelis gathered in cities across the country on Monday to pray for the people of war-torn Syria, hours before the start of Yom Kippur, the Jewish Day of Atonement.Welcome to the home of the Jewish people
Under the banner “The world is silent, we are not,” and with the involvement of rabbis and communal leaders, people gathered in Beersheba, Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Haifa, the Golan Heights and other places in prayer, music and silent meditation.
The events were organized and coordinated via Facebook by the son of the late peace activist Rabbi Menachem Froman, Shivi Froman.
“Hundreds of people, men, women and children, are slaughtered daily and the world is silent,” he told Walla News. He said that the pre-Yom Kippur gathering was “to cry out, to pray, to hope, to sing, to identify and to awaken the mercy of the world in general and about the suffering that is taking place here next to us.”
“I have been preoccupied with the issue over the past few months, and has greatly pained me,” Froman said. “We continue with our lives. This gives me deja-vu of the world’s silence about the Holocaust.”
From ancient times to modern days, the Land of Israel has seen a whirlwind of visitors knocking on its door...but Jews were always present in their home-sweet-home.