Thursday, November 03, 2016

From Ian:

Retired British Colonel: Iran-Backed Hezbollah Cells Preparing to Launch Future Attacks in Europe, US
Iran-backed Hezbollah cells are readying themselves to conduct future terrorist attacks in Europe and the US, a retired British Army officer told The Algemeiner on Thursday.
Colonel Richard Kemp — a former commander of UK forces in Afghanistan — was responding to a report in the Washington Free Beacon, citing an Iranian regime-aligned media outlet, that an Iranian military official claimed the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) was dispatching operatives to infiltrate the West.
Despite last year’s nuclear deal reached between the Islamic Republic and six world powers, Iran’s “hatred for America remains a pillar of the ayatollahs’ foreign policy,” Kemp said. “They use their proxy — the terrorist group Hezbollah — to project power overseas. There are today Hezbollah cells both in Europe and the US. These elements are trained, supported and controlled by the IRGC.”
Furthermore, Kemp explained, while “it is not clear exactly where the division lies between direct IRGC action overseas and action by Hezbollah and other terrorist proxies,” what is certain is that “either directly or indirectly, the IRGC has been preparing and will continue to prepare for terrorist attacks in the US and elsewhere in the West.”
In the past, Iran is believed to have used Hezbollah to strike Israeli and Jewish targets around the globe — including in Burgas, Bulgaria in 2012 and in Argentina in 1992 and 1994.
Also, American officials said the IRGC was behind a thwarted 2011 plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the US at a Washington, DC restaurant. (h/t Elder of Lobby)
Hen Mazzig: Campus Farhud
I struggle to speak above the noise of the protesters – but more than ever, of the thousands of talks I’ve given across the world, I pour out my soul.
I finish my talk – and reassure the crowd that I would be glad to return. I will not be silenced – and they should not be silenced.
“We won tonight,” I tell them. I ask everyone to be proud of themselves and to stand tall. There isn’t a more admirable, more noble cause to support than Zionism, a movement that brought safety to the Jewish people who for centuries experienced oppression and humiliation as a minority across the world.
We all stand up – and we start singing Hatikva, ‘The Hope,’ Israel’s national anthem. We sing higher than the voices of the mob outside. At that moment, even in the face of violence, the music somehow gives us a sense of transcendent safety – and feel proud.
I am soon rushed out of the campus, in a police coat by the police. They keep telling me: “Don’t look back, keep running.” It is if I am escaping a warzone.
That night strengthened my resolve more than ever. The hateful mob reaffirmed my conviction that antisemitism remains alive – in Europe, North American and beyond.
In twenty-first century Britain, Jews leaving a room to screams of “Shame! Shame! Shame!” is utterly horrifying.
I couldn’t sleep all night – I kept on thinking, how do we fight such hate speech? The answer: with good speech.
You fight bigotry and fanaticism by standing tall, even when you’re afraid. We will continue spreading a message of hope – just as Israel does within the darkness of the Middle East.
London police warn pro-Israel groups not to disclose location
The Metropolitan Police in London have asked pro-Israeli organizations Reservists on Duty and Campaign for Truth not to disclose the locations of any of their conferences, citing security concerns.
Wednesday's warning followed the violent anti-Israel rally at University College London last week, when Jewish students attending a campus event hosted by UCL Friends of Israel were trapped in the hall by protesters.
Police officers called representatives from the Israeli organizations to tell them it would be best not to disclose the location of a conference scheduled for next week. At the same time, since the location has not been disclosed, the police will not provide security at the event. The organizations were told that if necessary they could summon police to the scene.
The conference, on the theme "Ethics of war in the age of social media and the rise of terror," is being hosted by Reservists on Duty and sponsored by Campaign for Truth, organizations that work to undermine the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement.



Audio: Northwestern Law Professor Challenges Israel Boycott State By State
The BDS movement challenges governments and corporations to boycott, divest and sanction Israel and Israeli-based companies for their presence in Palestinian territories.
Many activists have turned to states, lobbying to divest government funds from Israeli-associated companies. Many states, including Illinois, have in turn passed legislation banning state-sanctioned boycotts of Israel.
Northwestern University professor Eugene Kontorovich had a part in writing many of the state laws condemning BDS. He joins us from Israel to discuss his part in challenging BDS.
Leading Jewish Group Calls on Pro-Israel New Yorkers to Show Support for BDS-Defying Michelin-Starred Chef
A major New York Jewish group is calling on members of the pro-Israel community to show their support for the chef of a Manhattan restaurant who has come under fire from the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement over an upcoming trip to Israel.
Matt Lambert — the New Zealand-born executive chef and co-owner of the Musket Room in the Nolita neighborhood — is set to travel to Tel Aviv later this month to show off his skills in the American Express-sponsored Round Tables World Culinary Tour. Lambert — a Michelin-starred rising talent — will be one of 13 renowned chefs from around the globe who will take over the kitchens of some of the top restaurants in Israel’s gastronomical capital between Nov. 15-19.
Since his participation in the festival was announced, Lambert has been targeted by the BDS movement via a Twitter campaign and demonstrations outside his restaurant.
Earlier this week, in response to this BDS effort, the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York (JCRC-NY) issued an action alert, urging New Yorkers to patronize the Musket Room, leave positive reviews on Facebook and Yelp and thank Lambert via Twitter.
Promoter calls Roger Waters hypocrite over boycott plea
Shuki Weiss tells Pink Floyd co-founder his BDS claims are off-base after he urges Chemical Brothers to cancel Tel Aviv show
Concert promoter Shuki Weiss responded strongly, publicizing his strongly worded letter in the Israeli press and on Facebook.
“Roger Waters — you are such a hypocrite,” he wrote. “It wasn’t too long ago that you played a show here with us in Israel. A very lucrative show for you, as we recall. And so it seems odd to see you call on the Chemical Brothers to cancel their show here, thereby denying them the rights that you allowed yourself:
the right to meet their fans here
the right to share their music with them
and of course, the right to make a living as a musician touring the world with a message
and the right to educate oneself along this touring path – to see the world through your own eyes rather than be brainwashed by propaganda from all sides.”
“Yes, ‘Tel Aviv’s hipster vibe is a bubble,'” wrote Weiss. “One of sanity, love, intellect, compassion, and community. Quite similar perhaps to what New York may be in Trump’s America in a few weeks. And similar to Long Island, it was built on the remains of generations of communities (or perhaps “tribes”?) that once lived here.”
Weiss concluded the letter by asking Waters whether he lives in Long Island, and whether he would continue to play in New York if Donald Trump is elected president and builds a wall around Mexico, as the presidential candidate has threatened.
Fans Urged to Rally Behind The Chemical Brothers After BDS Supporter Roger Waters Calls on British Electro Duo to Cancel Israel Show
An entertainment industry advocacy organization called on fans to rally behind famed British electro duo The Chemical Brothers as they face pressure by anti-Israel activists, including former Pink Floyd bassist Roger Waters, to cancel their upcoming concert in the Jewish state.
“We need YOU to write messages of support to English electronic music duo the Chemical Brothers,” the group, Creative Community for Peace (CCFP), posted on Facebook on Tuesday.
Waters recently joined thousands of performers who signed an open letter by Artists for Palestine UK, demanding that The Chemical Brothers — Ed Simons and Tom Rowlands — back out of their Tel Aviv show, to express solidarity with the BDS movement.
CCFP’s Communications and Project Coordinator, Tara Khoshbin, told The Algemeiner on Wednesday that the Chemical Brothers are “just the latest in a long list of artists to receive massive pressure by supporters of BDS.” She added, “Many artists who choose to perform in Israel are bombarded by hundreds or thousands of anti-Israel messages, very often containing misinformation and distortions which we believe dampen hope for rational discourse and a positive way forward.”
The Chemical Brothers have not responded to the petition or letter as of yet. Though tickets are on sale for their Tel Aviv show, the concert is not listed in the upcoming dates section of the band’s website.
IsraellyCool: El Co-Founder Goes On Epic Rant Against Ali Abunimah and EI
Nigel Parry was one of the founders and designers of the Electronic Intifada. So he’s really not a very nice person at all. He is an extreme, potty-mouthed Israel hater – but he also now detests his former partner-in-crime Ali Abunimah and the entire EI operation.
Which makes his unhinged rant against them quite entertaining.
Daphne Anson: Stephen Sizer Chastised By His Bishop
The Board of Deputies of British Jews has responded:
"Stephen Sizer has breached the terms of the undertakings he gave to the Church of England by attending and publishing a social media post about a particularly ugly and inflammatory event with Jenny Tonge in the chair. Tonge was subsequently suspended from the Liberal Democrat Party as a result.
The terms of Sizer’s agreement – drawn up after he repeatedly shared antisemitic material on social media – required him to refrain from writing or speaking on themes relating to the current situation in the Middle East and to its historical backdrop for as long as he remained a parish priest in the Diocese of Guildford. By attending an event where the audience is alleged to have applauded the suggestion that Jews were responsible for the Holocaust, he clearly flouted the agreement, earning him a stinging public rebuke from his bishop in the Diocese of Guildford. The Bishop’s statement makes it clear that while Sizer intends to leave his post in 2017, his ability to reach that date by his own accord now hangs by a thread.
Board of Deputies Vice President Marie van der Zyl said: “A repeat offender in the trafficking of antisemitic slurs, the ‘soon-to-be-ex’ clergyman Stephen Sizer has spectacularly flouted his written undertaking to the Church of England by attending an event filled with toe-curling antisemitism. If he had any shred of decency, Sizer would have fulfilled the terms of the agreement and tendered his resignation with immediate effect. He now guarantees that he will end his clerical career under a cloud. The sad irony that this divisive figure is moving on to a charity called ‘Peacemaker Mediators’ is not lost on us.”
Reviewing BBC portrayal of the Balfour Declaration
In a documentary titled ‘The Birth of Israel‘ – produced within the framework of BBC coverage of the 60th anniversary of Israel’s declaration of independence in 2008 – Middle East editor Jeremy Bowen’s portrayal of the Balfour Declaration (from 07:50 here) started off accurately and impartially.
“In November 1917 as British troops were fighting their way up to Jerusalem, seizing Palestine from the Turks, the Foreign Secretary in London wrote a letter that became known as the Balfour Declaration. The Balfour Declaration said the British would view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people and use their best endeavours to make it happen. And it also said it was clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country.”
Bowen then turned to the promotion of editorialised commentary clearly designed to shape audience opinion:
“Now, there’s a whole series of incompatible promises in that and the British never found a way to keep them. As a result they were regarded as betrayers by both sides. For the Zionists it was a big step forward. But, said the writer Arthur Koestler, it was an impossible idea: one nation promising another the land of a third. It did a great deal to create the conflict that continues today.”
The Washington Post Evicts Context on Palestinian Village Without Electricity
An ‘ideology-driven' article
Similarly, The Post used other language that editorializes and distorts, instead of properly reporting the news. For example, the paper claimed that “Israeli soldiers have demolished Palestinian homes and European-funded schools, latrines and solar installations for Palestinians in Area C, where ideology-driven Israeli settlers oppose new ‘acts on the ground' they views as supporting aims of a future Palestinian state [emphasis added].”
What is an “ideology-driven Israeli settler”? The Post doesn't elaborate for its readers. Nor did the paper point out that home demolitions are often the result of unauthorized building without a permit or, in some instances, an action taken against Palestinian terrorists and those who support them in order to deter further acts of anti-Jewish violence. The report, failing to offer specifics, similarly omitted that many European-funded Palestinian schools praise terrorist attacks, disseminate anti-Semitic propaganda and encourage their pupils to refuse to recognize Israel. (See, for example, “What the EU Does with Your Money," Gatestone Institute, Jan. 14, 2014.)
The Post chose to publish, in the paper's print edition, another “settlement story”—in this case, a lengthy article that is ostensibly about a village of 165 people. However, the paper's “Palestinians who attended Jewish settlement event arrested by their own police” (October 21), which noted that the PA had arrested Palestinians merely for attending a holiday gathering with Jews, was only available online. Similarly, coverage of the Palestinian Authority canceling elections that were scheduled for Oct. 8 was only detailed in online articles. The Post seems to prioritize one type of news story over others, with those that cast Palestinian leadership in a negative light being disseminated less widely.
By relying on questionable sources and omitting essential background The Post's dispatch leaves truth stranded.
Comparing BBC reporting on ISIS and Hamas tunnels
In contrast, five days after the operation to retake Mosul from ISIS began on October 16th 2016, the BBC’s Ahmed Maher was able to tell audiences that:
“These tunnels are very important and a key element in the military strategy of the jihadist group.”
The BBC was similarly able to describe the purpose of the tunnels in its own words in the synopsis to Maher’s report.
“The tunnels have been mainly used as hideouts and escape routes by the militants.”
In an article by Richard Galpin published on October 25th under the title “Mosul battle: Four ways IS is fighting back” readers found a section sub-headed “Tunnels”.
Guardian letter calls ’56 Suez War an ‘unprovoked’ Israeli attack and a ‘war crime’
Leaving aside Pritchard’s bizarre charge that the conflict represented an Israeli, British and French “war crime”, here’s the background he left out:
On August 9, 1949, the UN upheld Israel’s complaint that Egypt was illegally blocking the Suez Canal.
In 1951, the UN Security Council ordered Egypt to open the Canal to Israeli shipping. Egypt refused.
In 1955, Egypt started importing arms from the Soviets in anticipation of an upcoming confrontation with Israel.
In 1956, Egypt blockaded Israel’s shipping lane in the Straits of Tiran and nationalized the Suez Canal.
The blockade of the Suez Canal and Gulf of Aqaba to Israeli shipping, combined with increased terrorist attacks and bellicose Arab statements [see Nasser’s threats to annihilate Israel] prompted Israel, with the backing of Britain and France, to attack Egypt on October 29, 1956.
Major Jewish Group: By Threatening to Prosecute Holocaust Scholar, Poland Attempting to ‘Rewrite History Through a Political Lens’
By threatening to prosecute a prominent Holocaust scholar for claiming that Poles killed more Jews during World War II than they did Germans, the Polish government is “apparently attempting to intimidate researchers and to rewrite history through a political lens,” an official with a leading US-based Jewish human rights organization said in a statement on Tuesday.
Mark Weitzman — the director of government affairs for the Simon Wiesenthal Center — was referring to the case of Polish-born American historian Jan Tomasz Gross, who is facing a renewed investigation by a Polish state prosecutor for the alleged crime — punishable by up to three years in prison – of “publicly insulting the nation.”
Weitzman said the probe against Gross “bears all the hallmarks of a political witch-hunt.”
“While this had been customary under Communist rule, it is a clear departure from the vigorous and healthy debate that had been occurring in Poland since independence,” Weitzman noted.
“Any attempt by the Polish government to stifle or distort historical research on the Holocaust through legal or other means must be rejected, and the right to pursue historical research free from government interference must be clearly affirmed,” Weitzman stated.
In an interview with The Algemeiner in August, renowned antisemitism expert Manfred Gerstenfeld said there was no doubt that Poles have not yet come to terms with their country’s Holocaust history.
‘Bieber fever’ expected to once again hit Israel next year
Canadian pop idol Justin Bieber is expected to return to Israel to perform at Park Hayarkon in May of next year. Bieber last performed in Israel in 2011. Bieber released his fourth album, Purpose, in 2015, and is supporting it with the Purpose World Tour, which will likely include Israel.
Bieber was barely into his teens when he released his 2009 debut, My World, and became one of the youngest success stories in contemporary pop when it went either platinum or double platinum in several countries. Over the last few years, the 22-year-old Bieber has tried to shed his teen heartthrob status, collaborating with hip hop artists such as Diplo, Major Lazer and Drake.
Ticket information has not yet been announced.
Beiber's 2011 visit to the Holy Land prompted major traffic jams that put half of Tel Aviv in gridlock and thousands of teenage (and younger) girls gathering at Park Hayarkon to scream at the top of their lungs, wave signs and beg their moms for a poster or a T-shirt featuring the object of their affection.
Security at the concert was beefed up, presumably to keep the masses from trampling each other in an attempt to get closer to the well-coiffed Canadian singer – and as Bieber flirted with the crowd, it seemed like there would be a stampede of lovestruck teens.
Judging from Bieber’s Twitter account, though, the security may have been meant mostly to keep the ravenous press at bay.
American Friends of Magen David Adom Raises Record $14 Million at LA Gala
The American Friends of Magen David Adom (AFMDA) raised a record $14 million at a fundraiser held at The Beverly Hilton in Los Angeles Tuesday.
The Los Angeles Red Star Ball was attended by a number of Hollywood stars and other celebrities, including Camryn Manheim, Suzanne Cryer, Beverly Todd and Ivan Bitton. Among the leaders from the worlds of business, politics and philanthropy in attendance were event hosts Adele and Beny Alagem, Yossi Dina, Gila and Adam Milstein, Drs. Gitta and Jack Nagel, Robert Shapiro, Daphna Ziman and former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. Maurice Kanbar, creator of SKYY Vodka, provided the single largest donation of $5 million.
According to AFMDA, the donations will support the construction of a new-state-of-the-art, underground blood facility that will store and process blood donations to the MDA. The MDA provides 97 percent of all blood used by Israeli hospitals and 100 percent of the blood used by the IDF.
“The recent wave of terror in Israel, including deadly stabbings, has made crystal clear the need to increase the security of Israel’s national blood supply,” said Dina Leeds of Los Angeles, who serves as AFMDA Western Region president.
Israeli wins prestigious Mr. Universe title
Kobi Ifrach, 20, from Zichron Yaakov was declared Mr. Universe on Sunday in the under-22 junior division, in an international tournament held in Birmingham, England.
The bodybuilding event has been organized annually for 67 years by the National Amateur Body-Builders’ Association (NABBA).
“It is an amazing feeling to wrap myself in the Israeli flag,” an excited Ifrach told the Hebrew-language daily Yedioth Aharonoth after his win. “I came from such a small country and became the center of attention. This is unprecedented!”
Ifrach is the first Israeli to win the NABBA junior title since it was introduced in 1988.
Over the years, the all-around Mr. Universe title has been won by famous bodybuilders such as movie star and former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, who prevailed in four consecutive years 1967-1970.
Israeli invention aims to take smartphones out of family time
According the 2014 State of the Kid report released by the company Highlights, which makes educational products for children, Lazi’s son is not alone.
The report shows 62% of kids feel like their parents are distracted or focused on other things when they’re trying to talk to them, the main culprit being cell phones.
Knowing the problem extended to more than just his dinner table, Lazi then decided to partner with childhood friends and create Pause.
According to him, the main purpose of the device is to serve as a constant reminder for people to put their phones aside.
“People say to us that they can just turn off their phones, they don’t need our product,” he told the Post. “The thing is: nobody does.”
“But if you do it as a ritual, as something that everybody does together, then people will be more likely to do it,” he continued. “We are a tool, we don’t replace education. If you don’t have the drive to do it then you’ll never do it. But if you want to do it and don’t know how, we are offering you something to help you.”
He pointed out that Pause can also be used in a workplace setting. The 2015 Lireo Workplace Culture and Communication report shows indeed that 47% of workers say that their biggest issue during meetings is that other participants aren’t paying attention.
The Pause box started selling on Tuesday on the crowdfunding website Indiegogo. It retails for $40.
WATCH: Americans Respond To Fake News Stories About Jews, Hillary, Trump
The title of this video is Hilarious! Views on Jews, Hillary, Trump & Israel from America. And while it is always good value to watch people pretending to have heard some “news” (which turns out to be fake), many of these responses are more disturbing than hilarious.


The IDF is using the Microsoft Hololens to bring augmented reality to the battlefield.





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