Friday, February 10, 2017

From Ian:

Why the British Left has come to revile Israel
The morning of July 4, 1976 – the day of the Entebbe raid – is one of my earliest memories.
Growing up in Uganda, that day left two big impressions on my five-year-old mind.
First was that feeling of elation – all too short-lived – in the adults around me that at last the tyrant Idi Amin might at last have met his match. Second, I saw the Israelis as the good guys. Unequivocally.
Back in Britain 40 years later, that last view is not one everybody seems to share. Entebbe proved to be the last time Israel could count on broad sympathy across the political spectrum. The British Left had already abandoned its longstanding support for Israel after its stunning victory in the Six Day War. Within a few years of Entebbe, it had decisively turned against Israel.
Left-wing contempt for Israel is now pervasive. From the trades unions to the universities, the Guardianista media to the Labour Party, it’s taken as read that Israel is in the wrong. In an era when the British Left has never been more divided, anti-Zionism seems to be the great unifier.
But why has the British Left come to revile Israel? Is it because kibbutz-style socialism has given way to modern capitalism? Or because Israel is no longer the plucky underdog? Or perhaps because Israeli voters have the chutzpah to keep electing rightwing governments? What’s clear to me is that much of the hostility to Israel has nothing to do with the ostensible reasons given. The issue of settlements or Palestinian statehood, it seems, has become a stick with which to beat the Jewish state.
Far from trying to prevent further conflict, the leftist coalition of boycott backers and Hamas apologists are actively promoting it.
UN Watch: Khader Awad, Teacher At UNRWA, Calls For The Murder Of Jews
Following is one of the 40 perpetrators identified in UN Watch’s 130-page report entitled “Poisoning Palestinian Children: A Report on UNRWA Teachers’ Incitement to Jihadist Terrorism & Antisemitism.”
Khader Awad, who identifies himself on his Facebook profile as an UNRWA teacher, features on his public Facebook page an image of a Jew with three guns and a knife trained on his head; the Hebrew caption reads “Blood = Blood. #KillThem.” In Arabic, it says “Kill the settlers.”
A second photo, which Mr. Awad made as his cover photo, shows a Hamas terrorist in front of a scene of destruction in Israel, with the words in Hebrew and Arabic “We are waiting.”
These posts supporting the murder of Jews and Hamas terrorism grossly violate the duty of neutrality applicable to all UNRWA employees.
UN Watch: Ghanem Naim Ghoneim, Teacher at UNRWA, Venerates “Wonderful” Hitler
Ghanem Naim Ghoneim, who identifies himself on his Facebook profile as a teacher at UNRWA, has two photos posted in his public Facebook page of Adolph Hitler, Image 1 and Image 2, whom he calls “our beloved,” and “Hitler the great.”
The UNRWA teacher notes that Hitler was close with Palestinian Arab leader Amin al-Husseini, and then adds, “God bless Hitler.”
Commenting on one of his Hitler photos, seen in Comments 1 and Comments 2 two of Mr. Ghoneim’s apparent UNRWA students praise the post, with one saying “God bless you, teacher!” and the other saying “Nice one, teacher.” Their profiles can be viewed by clicking on Student Profile 1, Student Profile 2 and Student Profile 3.
In Image 3 The UNRWA teacher also celebrates Hamas rocket fire on Tel Aviv, to hit “the Jews.”
The pro-Hamas post grossly violates UNRWA employees’ duty of neutrality, and the antisemitic posts violate their duty to reject racism in all its forms.

Is Iona Community Sabotaging Itself by Embracing Kairos?
At the heart of its call for peace and justice, however, lies a profound imbalance. We might say that Ionians, like Quakers and many other Christian groups, are naïve innocents let loose in the real world. There is a role for idealists in limited situations. But problems arise when such do-gooders do not properly understand what lies behind mutual hatred, enduring antagonism between people, and conflicts in the name of one cause or another. And here, the Iona Community falls down spectacularly.
Kairos is built on an Islamic, not a Christian narrative. Under Islamic law, territory once conquered by Muslim armies becomes sacrosanct and can never be forfeited to non-believers. If non-Muslims take control of formerly Muslim land (for example, Spain or Portugal), then Muslims are bound to reconquer it through renewed military action.
Kairos, significantly, does not refer to the fact that Jews lived in and ruled in the region long before the Arab conquests.
When Christians choose to ignore the rights of Jews, they deny their own origins in the land. Jesus was a Jew. The first Christian community was made up of Jews who adhered to Jewish law. All Christian churches recognize the Jewish Bible as part of their own scriptural, and the New Testament is a clear record of Jewish existence in the first Christian century.
There never was a "historic Palestine", and it is disturbing to find a Christian community buying into the modern Islamic narrative. and the "Palestinian" inhabitants of the Mandate are a combination of the descendants of the 7th-century Arab invaders.
The Holocaust Should Never Be Minimized
This is not just the realm of Holocaust deniers but increasingly progressives who, whether through conscious malice or sheer naiveté, speak of the Holocaust (when they’re not speaking of “holocausts”) as but one unfortunate episode among many, not a world-historic crime that singled out Jews first and foremost. It’s a perverse sensibility that decrees the uttering of basic truths about the Holocaust akin to the historical exploitation and obfuscation such basic professions are meant to rebut. If those like The New Yorker’s anonymous book critic believe that Levy is engaging in unseemly “competitive victimhood” simply by claiming that the Holocaust, in both nature and degree, was worse than any other crime in human history (which it was), that’s because they falsely interpret such claims as entries into a victim competition—when, in fact, it is those challenging the singularity of the Holocaust who are responsible for creating this obscene contest. Indeed, by relativizing the Holocaust, the reviewer sounds like a staffer in the Trump White House, which left out mention of the Jews from its Holocaust Remembrance Day statement because to do so would somehow insult all the “other” people who suffered.
The review’s sinister element comes in its accusation that Jews like Levy are responsible for corrupting the commemoration of history and not, say, the Muslim propagandists who frequently invoke the Holocaust to equate Israelis with Nazis or the British student activists who voted against recognizing Holocaust Memorial Day because doing so “prioritizes some lives over others.” As the British sociologist David Hirsch observes, “When people get competitive about the Holocaust, they do it by accusing the Jews of being competitive.” Not even in talking about something so grave as the Holocaust can the Jews avoid being pushy, it seems.
The constant reminder that the Holocaust is unparalleled in human history comes not as a result of Jewish special pleading but rather it’s opposite: an insistence that Jews hog the world’s sympathy for selfish political ends. A major reason why Jews and others often feel a need to stress the Holocaust’s distinctiveness is because so many seem intent on emphasizing its ordinariness. It is a response to those who, motivated by resentment and equipped with mushy universalist bromides, would challenge and undermine that singularity—an attitude so perfectly embodied by a single, passive-aggressive sentence from The New Yorker.
McGill Student Leader: 'Punch A Zionist Today'
In a recently-deleted tweet, Igor Sadikov, a student at McGill University in Canada and a member of the university's Legislative Council and Board of Directors of the Students’ Society of McGill University, called on his followers to punch Zionists.
Aidan Fishman of B'nai Brith Canada writes that Sadikov is a supporter of the anti-Semitic Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement against Israel and once edited the student newspaper that refuses to give pro-Israel voices a forum.
"We expect that this tweet will be taken for the serious example of incitement that it is, and Sadikov will be censured appropriately.
“Further, Sadikov’s tweet only strengthens the case of those who have claimed an overwhelmingly anti-Israel atmosphere at The McGill Daily," said Amanda Hohmann, the National Director of B’nai Brith Canada’s League for Human Rights. "B’nai Brith will do everything in our power to ensure that publication’s discriminatory ban on Zionist content does not stand.”
The Students' Society of McGill University's judicial board rejected BDS last May, claiming correctly that it is a form of discrimination and violates the student union's constitution.
IsraellyCool: Igor “Punch A Zionist” Sadikov “Apologizes” – But Caught Condoning Violence Again
Following the furor over his call for violence against supporters of Israel, Igor Sadikov, SSMU member of Legislative Council and Board of Directors, has posted an “apology.”
Note the phraseology – he regrets that “some of my constituents and fellow students felt harmed by it.” He does not seem to regret that non-constituents and non fellow students who support Israel might feel harmed by it. Furthermore, he admits it was an attack against “Zionists”, but not Jews of course – even though, unlike his claims, you cannot “disentangle” the two. The playing of his own Jewish heritage card is also a nice touch.
But of course, this is not a sincere apology. I know this beyond the politically correct wording. You see, Igor has ‘Liked’ the following comment underneath the apology on his Facebook wall:
No doubt he is going to remove the ‘Like’ as soon as this post is brought to his attention. So I implore all of you to have a look at it now, and if you see it too, take your own screenshot to verify what I am saying is true.
Fred Maroun: McGill incident exposes anti-Zionist thinking
A leading member of so-called pro-Palestinian student groups at McGill University in Montreal, Canada, Igor Sadikov, became notorious on Thursday February 9 when his tweet calling for violence against Zionists was uncovered. His tweet and his later reactions expose the violent mentality of those who pretend to be pro-Palestinian, but they also expose much more than that.
Sadikov’s casual tweet to “punch a Zionist today” reflects the fact that so-called pro-Palestinian groups support the way that Palestinian entities such as Hamas and Fatah have chosen to handle the conflict with Israel, by using violence. When caught, Sadikov said, “I regret the poorly thought-out format I used to phrase my opposition to Zionism and colonialism and the harm that the tweet has caused”. Yes, because the “format” of his tweet was the problem… The font perhaps?
Further to that, Sadikov’s response indicates an obsession with opposing Zionism. Sadikov projects old leftist struggles against colonialism on a situation where Jews have a 3000-years history and are by far one of the most legitimately native people in the Middle East. He hates a group that he does not understand, a typical feature of xenophobia.
Sadikov’s xenophobia towards Zionists is further coupled with a total lack of concern for Palestinians. Both his tweet and his first post-caught reaction did not even mention the word Palestinian. There was no “Yeah for a Palestinian state”, and not even a “Free Palestine”. Only the repetition of uninformed criticism of Zionism.
Image of Jews Being Marched Into Nazi Gas Chambers Scrawled in Minnesota Student’s Room Example of ‘Skyrocketing’ Campus Antisemitism, School’s Chabad Rabbi Says
A rabbi at the University of Minnesota (UMN) told The Algemeiner on Thursday that he was disheartened but not surprised by the “disgusting” image of a Nazi gas chamber and crematorium scrawled on a Jewish student’s whiteboard, since “though such incidents used to be very rare, antisemitism on campus has been skyrocketing of late.”
Rabbi Yitzi Steiner, co-director of the Rohr Center for Jewish Student Life — the school’s Chabad house — was responding to the crude drawing of Jews being marched into Hitler’s ovens, over which smoke is seen billowing, left by someone who had broken in to the student’s locked dorm room.
“The fact that this sort of hatred exists on our campus is unacceptable, and is obviously a troubling issue that threatens the open dialogue and diversity that makes UMN such a special campus,” Steiner wrote on Facebook, telling The Algemeiner that he plans to discuss Thursday’s incident at Chabad’s Shabbat dinner, to which he has invited the president of the university.
Benjie Kaplan, the executive director of the school’s Hillel center, said that many “concerned and anxious parents and alumni” have been phoning him since the incident.
FBI Investigating Emails Threatening Violence Against Jewish, Black U Michigan Undergrads Sent From Forged Account
The FBI has launched an investigation into emails sent to Michigan undergraduates, written by someone posing as their instructor, threatening violence against Jews and blacks, The Algemeiner has learned.
The joint criminal inquiry by the FBI and the University of Michigan Police Department began after engineering students received at least three menacing messages Tuesday night ostensibly from Professor J. Alex Halderman and one of his doctoral students, according to student newspaper The Michigan Daily.
University president Mark Schlissel and his administration condemned the emails’ contents in statement on Wednesday. According to the statement, patrol units have increased their presence in the area of the campus where the UM College of Engineering is located.
The school said it has confirmed the messages were “spoofed,” or that the email header was forged to appear as if originated from a source other than the real one — a practice different from hacking, whereby a security system is circumvented in order to access accounts.
Halderman, a cyber security expert, said in a statement that he and his PhD student “did not send” the messages and “don’t know who did.”
“As I teach in my computer security classes, it takes very little technical sophistication to forge the sender’s address in an email,” he said.
Hitler-Themed Valentine Card Declaring ‘My Love for You Burns Like 6,000 Jews’ Distributed to Central Michigan U Students
A Valentine’s Day card with a photo of Hitler next to the message, “my love 4 u burns like 6,000 [sic] jews,” was distributed at an event at Central Michigan University (CMU) on Wednesday, causing a flurry of outraged posts on social media, the campus newspaper Central Michigan Life reported.
The card, included in holiday-themed bags, was handed out to students by a member of the CMU College Republicans, which immediately condemned the “very inappropriate” prank, pulled — it insisted — without the knowledge of the rest of the club.
“The College Republicans as an organization did not distribute this valentine,” the group said. “We in no way condone this type of rhetoric or antisemitism. We apologize for any offense, and want students to know that we do not tolerate this sort of behavior.”
The Muslim Council of Britain's Little Problem
The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) presented themselves in the manner of debt collectors: standing beside a big bruiser stressing how sorry they were to have to demand this payment, but that they were only just holding back their big, angry friend.
Unfortunately for them, during the last Labour government in Britain the MCB's behaviour and beliefs were exposed by the more progressive Muslim voices who were by then coming along, and also by a wider society which had become wise to the tricks of these self-appointed "community leaders."
The Daily Mail issued an apology, allowing supporters of the radical National Union of Students president to pretend that she was the victim of a smear campaign by self-confessedly inaccurate media reports rather than a nasty anti-Semite whose back was being covered by a full-time pedant with dodgy facts.
Miqdaad Versi is happy to apply rigorous standards to others, but holds exceedingly lax standards himself so long as he can carry on his own campaigning work against the UK government's counter-terrorism and counter-extremism programmes.
Sadly for Versi, the British public's security concerns are not caused by very slightly inaccurate media reports but rather by the deadly accurate bomb blasts and shooting attacks around the world which nobody needs to make up and nobody can fully cover over.
IsraellyCool: Linda Sarsour Gets Democratic Party Social Media “Endorsement”
The Democratic Party Facebook page has posted this, a link to a Cosmo article about women standing up to US President Trump.
And fair enough, right? I mean, it is understandable the Democrats would post an article dealing with opposition to the Republican President they oppose.
The article fawns over this women but none more so than fake feminist Linda Sarsour, who gets two spots – the first as one of the women’s march organizers, and another separate one.
Linda Sarsour’s disturbing views and statements are public record. So the person administering the Democratic Party Facebook page is either living in a bubble or not troubled by things like Sarsour’s advocating for Sharia law, takeaways from 911, or hateful rhetoric towards real feminists.
This kind of thing may be par for the course for women’s magazines like Cosmo and Elle, but I expect better from one of the leading political parties.
Jews should "overcome" horror of Holocaust, says Corbyn ally
Speeches at an anti-Israel demonstration organised by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign have been branded "discredited, nasty and hateful" by Board of Deputies president Jonathan Arkush.
In one speech filmed by the JC, the vice president of CND Bruce Kent can be heard telling Jews to "overcome" the horror of the Holocaust.
Mr Kent, a long-term ally of Jeremy Corbyn, appeared to undermine the significance of the Shoah sayiing: "We have all had terrible sufferings in history - all of us."
Mr Kent was speaking to supporters of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, for whom he is a patron with Mr Corbyn, outside Downing Street on Monday when he claimed the horrors of Germany’s Nazi regime had left people suffering from a “guilt complex” in relation to Israel.
He is also claimed Zionism did not represent Judaism and that many Jews “know this perfectly well”.
Mr Arkush said of the PSC speakers: “This motley band of people from the past show why we can be confident that when we make the case for Israel calmly and reasonably, we will expose the malicious posturing of those who think that the only way forward for a just and secure peace for all is to push Israel into the sea.
Racist Labour’s Councillor Clarke found berating Holocaust victims for not fighting back
John Clarke, a Labour Councillor and Chairman of Black Notley Parish Council in Essex, who was a parliamentary candidate for Labour in 2015, has been found to have posted a comment on Facebook berating Holocaust victims for ‘not fighting back’. Despite being an unarmed civilian population facing the might of Nazi Germany’s genocidal forces, Jews famously did mount fierce rebellions and missions to sabotage or resist the Nazis.
We exposed Councillor Clarke on Tuesday after he tweeted an image from a neo-Nazi website claiming that the Rothschild family, a Jewish family of bankers and philanthropists, has “used usury alongside modern Israel as an imperial instrument to take over the world and all of its resources, including you and I”.
Now, Campaign Against Antisemitism has been contacted by a former pupil of Clarke’s over a Facebook rant in 2012 in which Clarke wrote: “As for WW2, I am unaware of any significant military action taken by Jews against Nazi Germany; ask older Jews why they didn’t actually FIGHT the nazis. In addition, insulting the memory of the allied forces, which included many of my relatives, who actually freed Jews from concentration camps you are the ‘deniers’ here. You may also like to know that many British ex-soldiers now in their eighties remember what the Jews did to members of the British forces sent to keep the peace in Israel, before it was declared a sovereign state in the late 1940s. I’ll bet you have an excuse for THAT disgusting bit of Jewish history”.
StandWithUs: Israel hating Latino student finds something unbelievable
Sebastian, the Student Body President at Georgia State University, had nothing good to say about Israel. Then he actually went there. What he saw was unbelievable.

Guardian letter repeats lie that there are “millions” of actual Palestinian refugees
Let’s leave aside the suggestion that accepting an award “recognizing individuals who have attained excellence…and who inspire others through their…dedication to the Jewish community and/or the State of Israel” is a morally reprehensible decision, and focus instead on the sentence we’ve highlighted.
As we’ve demonstrated, Palestinians are not in fact “one of the largest” refugee populations on the planet”.
The only reason why many could be forgiven for not understanding this has to do with the fact that – unlike the way all other refugees in the world are treated – UNRWA (the UN agency which deals only with Palestinians) defines as a “refugee” all subsequent descendants of those 750,000 actual refugees from ’48. But, regardless of how UNRWA defines it, nobody can conceivably claim that these millions of descendants are actual refugees. Indeed, if UNRWA’s definition was applied to the 800,000 or so Jewish refugees from Arab lands between 1945 and 1967, it would make millions of Israeli Jews (who are descendants of the 800,000) eligible for refugee status.
Most of the world’s actual refugees today are from three war-torn countries – Syria (4.9 million), Afghanistan (2.7 million) and Somalia (1.1 million). Perhaps the reason why Anish Kapoor didn’t mention Palestine when he spoke out against “abhorrent government policies” towards refugees is because he understands intuitively that there are relatively few actual Palestinian refugees in the world.
The Washington Post’s Missing Peace
The Washington Post has, once more, missed an opportunity to inform readers about Palestinian rejection of U.S. and Israeli offers for peace and statehood in exchange for the recognition of the Jewish state. In so doing, the paper provides another example of its inability, or perhaps unwillingness, to detail Palestinian political developments and positions.
A Feb. 3, 2016 dispatch (“White House warns Israeli new settlements may not help achieve peace”) by reporters Abby Phillip and Karen DeYoung is but the latest in a long-line of Post coverage that omits Palestinian leaders' rejectionism. In their report, Phillip and DeYoung note that peace efforts “broke down” in 2013 and 2014, but fail to inform readers why.
As CAMERA has frequently noted (see, for example “Abbas Rejects Peace and Palestinian Statehood, U.S. Media Rejects Coverage,” The Times of Israel, April 3, 2016) , the Palestinian Authority (PA) refused U.S. and Israeli offers in 2000 at Camp David, 2001 at Taba, 2008 after the Annapolis conference, as well as efforts by then-U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Vice President Joe Biden, in 2014 and 2016, respectively. The March 9, 2016 proposal by Biden offered a freeze on Israeli settlement construction and a Palestinian state with its capital in eastern Jerusalem—three things that PA President Mahmoud Abbas has claimed to want. In exchange, the PA would be expected to recognize Israel as a Jewish state and desist with calls to destroy its Jewish character by the so-called “right of return.” Under this “right”—not found in U.N. General Assembly Resolution 194 (1948) or related resolutions as claimed by Palestinian spokesman—descendants of Palestinian Arabs who fled or chose to leave during the 1948 Arab-Israeli war would be allowed to settle in Israel instead of a newly-created Palestinian state.
Quebec Imam prays for the annihilation of the Jews
At the end of his sermons at Al Andalous Islamic Center in Montreal, Quebec Imam Sayed AlGhitawi recited supplications to Allah to support the mujahideen (Muslims who engage in jihad) in Palestine and to inflict total destruction on the Jews.
The following are excerpts from Sayed AlGhitawi’s supplications in 2014 (originally in Arabic – click HERE and HERE):
O Allah, give victory to our brothers who engage in Jihad for Your sake in everywhere, O Lord of the Worlds
O Allah, give victory to our brothers who engage in Jihad in Palestine
O Allah, connect to their hearts
O Allah, make their feet firm
O Allah, make their feet firm
O Allah, give them victory over their enemy
O Allah, destroy the accursed Jews
NY State apologizes for ‘anti-Israel’ cartoon on exam
New York State’s Department of Education apologized for including a political cartoon on a statewide exam that critics called anti-Israel propaganda.
According to the American Jewish Congress, which circulated a petition claiming the cartoon was “blatantly anti-Israel,” the department responded to its complaints with a statement expressing regret for the cartoon’s inclusion, the New York Post reported Wednesday.
“We regret this test question was included in the Regents exam and apologize to those who were offended by it,” the department said in the statement. “We are reviewing our internal procedures to vet all questions to ensure inappropriate questions are not included on future exams.”
The statement continued: “Political cartoons contained on Regents exams are sometimes very pointed and thought-provoking but they are never intended to represent the point of view of the Board of Regents or the Education Department on a given issue.”
Pope Francis meets ADL delegation, condemns anti-Semitism
Pope Francis on Thursday denounced “widespread” anti-Semitism during a meeting with a delegation from the Anti-Defamation League.
Francis met with the group at the Vatican, according to a report from Vatican Radio.
“Sadly, anti-Semitism, which I again denounce in all its forms as completely contrary to Christian principles and every vision worthy of the human person, is still widespread today,” Francis said, according to a transcript of his remarks released by the Vatican.
The pontiff also reiterated a statement released on the 50th anniversary of Nostra Aetate, the landmark declaration on Catholic-Jewish relations from 1965, that the church “feels particularly obliged to do all that is possible with our Jewish friends to repel anti-Semitic tendencies.”
In a series of tweets, ADL chief Jonathan Greenblatt said the encounter was both meaningful and powerful.
Revolutionary Israeli device can eliminate need for follow-up breast cancer surgery
Israel’s Dune Medical Devices has developed an instrument to help women with breast cancer avoid undergoing dreaded follow-up surgery to remove residual cancer cells after a tumor is removed. The device is already being used by surgeons on patients in more than 100 hospitals in the US and in Israeli medical centers.
When women undergo lumpectomies to remove breast cancers, the cancerous tissue is then sent to labs to ensure that the margins surrounding the tumor are clear of cancerous cells, so that the patients are truly cancer-free. Unfortunately, statistics show that when lab results are released, after a process that can take several weeks, one in four women is asked to return for re-excision — secondary surgery — if the tumors tested reveal that the margins are not clear, indicating some cancer cells remain in the patient’s body.
“We have developed the only technology in the world that has a commercial product that allows surgeons in operating rooms, in real time, to check the margins of the tumor, identify cancerous tissue and decide on the spot if more tissue needs to be removed or not,” Gal Aharonowitz, general manager in charge of Israeli operations, told The Times of Israel in a phone interview.
Clinical trials show that the company’s MarginProbe device reduces the need for re-excision by 51 percent, if it is used during the initial procedure, Aharonowitz said. Commercial use of the product has shown a drop of as much as 80% in the need for repeat surgery, he said.
Air India to Announce New Mumbai-Tel Aviv Route During Modi’s Visit to Israel
Air India is in the process of inaugurating a new Mumbai-Tel Aviv route, which is expected to be announced during Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s upcoming visit to Israel, The Times of India reported Thursday.
The flight will take a circuitous route to avoid flying over countries that do not have relations with Israel, and will therefore take seven rather than five hours.
“Saudi Arabia does not allow planes to fly to Israel from over its airspace. So AI is drawing up a circuitous route to avoid overflying countries that have such restrictions for Israel-bound planes,” a source with knowledge of the expected announcement told the Times.
El Al, Israel’s national airline, currently operates a route between Tel Aviv and Mumbai, though its jets are barred from flying over several Islamic and Gulf countries, including Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran, and the United Arab Emirates. El Al jets must therefore fly southwards over the Red Sea towards the Horn of Africa and then head east to Mumbai, lengthening the trip to eight hours. In contrast, Air India may overfly Saudi Arabia, though it would need to take a detour over the Red Sea so as not to fly directly into Israel. Its flights may therefore be a little shorter.
Some 35,000-40,000 Israelis visit India every year, often after completing their army service. Pavan Kapoor, India’s ambassador to Israel, announced last week that Modi is scheduled to arrive in Israel in 2017. He will be the first Indian prime minister to ever visit the Jewish state.
Non-Jewish Mixed Martial Artist Says He Holds Up Tallit After Each Victory as Tribute to ‘God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob’
American mixed martial artist Jared Cannonier explained on Wednesday why, despite not being Jewish — and without “putting any title” on his belief system — he has been holding up a tallit after each victory in the ring for the past two years.
“I believe in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob,” said Cannonier, who is currently competing in the Light Heavyweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship. “The [Jewish prayer shawl] is what I use as a tool to remind me that God is my father, that I follow his commandments, and it helps me keep myself in check.”
Asked by a Jewish reporter about the tallit — with the Hebrew word for “God” emblazoned on it — Cannonier, who was raised baptist, said, “I believe in my heart that ‘Yehovah’ (the God of Israel) is real and he has blessed me with the ability to do this and many other things, so I’m gonna keep doing this.”
The 32-year-old said that he has learned a lot about the religion from a coworker who is in the process of converting to Judaism, adding that though he himself has no plans to follow suit, “I believe in the Messiah. I believe in the word [of God].”
New Film Chronicles the Surprising Story of Jewish Renewal in Africa
Suppose you’re a young Jewish woman on a six-month volunteer mission with a women’s rights group in Ghana. Your passion for women’s issues helps you dismiss your initial wariness in this strange setting. Then the Jewish New Year celebrations — Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur — approach, and you long for the holiday celebrations back home.
So what does a wandering Jew do? She looks for a synagogue. But a synagogue in Ghana?
Most people are puzzled, saying that they’ve never seen or heard of any Jews. One man says that he knew a few Jews, but could not provide any details.
This is what happened to Gabrielle Zilkha, until an age old Jewish resource came to her: a Jewish mother.
Gabrielle’s mom searched the Internet and found a brief reference to a Jewish group in a small rural village quite far from Accra, the capital of Ghana, where Gabrielle was staying.
Kraft hosts Ezra Schwartz’s family as Super Bowl VIPs
As first reported by Only Simchas News, and as relayed by Rachel Deri, the aunt of Ezra Schwartz – the Boston-area 18-year-old yeshiva student who was killed in a Gush Etzion terror attack in late 2015 – New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft reached out to the Schwartz family and hosted them as his VIP guests at Super Bowl LI last weekend in Houston.
Ezra’s parents, Ari and Ruth Schwartz and their kids, Mollie, Hillel, Elon, and Avi, were all pictured at the Super Bowl in full Patriots’ garb, with Deri sharing a picture on Facebook that she called “bittersweet” because it was “without Ezra.”
This is not the first time that Robert Kraft has shown his compassion for the Schwartz family.
In November 2015, the week Ezra was killed, Kraft paid special tribute to him when he issued a moment of silence and at a Patriots “Monday Night Football” game that was watched by 15 million viewers, and then paid a personal shiva call to the Schwartz family the following night.
WATCH: Native American ambassadors to Israel
Are there remnants of the lost tribes of Israel among the First Nations? • Did native Americans have contact with ancient Hebrews? • Steve Ganot speaks with Chief Joseph and Dr. Laralyn RiverWind about the relationship between the two peoples.
People lived in the Americas for around 17,000 years before Columbus arrived in 1492, and there is evidence suggesting they had earlier contacts with other nations from the Old World -- the Vikings, perhaps the Chinese, and maybe even the ancient Hebrews.
In this episode of Israel Hayom Insider, Opinion Editor Steve Ganot speaks with Chief Joseph RiverWind, the acting principal chief, and Dr. Laralyn RiverWind, the tribal spokesperson, of the Northern Arawak Taino Tribal Nation, about surprising connections between native Americans and the Jewish people.
IsraelDailyPicture: Tu B'Shvat Special: The Trees of the Land of Israel
The photographers of the American Colony Photographic Department traveled the length and breadth of the Holy Land and the Middle East, from Damascus to Cairo, Malta to Iraq. 
Date palm tree (circa 1900-1920)
They were also fond of photographing the flora of the land of the Bible and providing the botanical genus name.
Facing the 1915 plague of locusts that hit with Biblical proportions, the photographers documented the life cycle and devastating results of the swarms.
IsraelDailyPicture: For Tu B'Shvat (Jewish New Year for Trees), a Picture of Jewish Soldiers in the British Army, WWI
Tu B'Shvat, the 15th day of the Hebrew month of Shvat, is a date assigned thousands of years ago in the Mishna for the purposes of determining the age of a tree and its tithing requirements.
Indeed, the date usually coincides with the first blossoms on the almond trees in Israel.
Today, Tu B'Shvat is commemorated as a combination of Arbor Day, environment-protection day, a kibbutz agricultural holiday, and, of course, a day for school outings and plantings.
The above picture of Jewish soldiers of the British Army who fought in Palestine in World War I was taken on Tu B'Shvat in 1919. One Legionnaire, Leon Cheifetz from Montreal who enlisted before the age of 18, assembled an album with dozens of pictures and biographies of many of the Canadians who fought with him.
Original caption: "A group from the 39th Battalion with workers and children from Ben-Shemen. 15th (of Shvat)." The sign quotes from Leviticus: "When you come to the Land, you shall plant...”

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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 14 years and 30,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.


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The Jerusalem Report:"A seemingly indefatigable one-man operation, armed only with a computer, chutzpa and stamina."

Algemeiner: "Fiercely intelligent and erudite"

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

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