Wednesday, January 17, 2018

From Ian:

Col. Richard Kemp: The Arab-Israeli Conflict: Why No Peace?
The jihadist aim is to isolate Israel politically; to influence political leaders, public opinion, international institutions and international organizations so that on the day their planned offensive begins, no one will be there to support Israel and the Jews. The Palestinian Authority, the PLO and the Arab/Muslim states will be unhampered to do what Hitler was unable to do in historic Palestine -- make it Judenrein (free of Jews).

Terror is "to achieve Palestinian political goals, to influence Israeli politics, to favor a given Israeli candidate for the post of Prime Minister, to compel the Israeli government to conceal more land, to prevent a final peace settlement by maintaining a state of conflict that could eventually lead to total war, to erode Israeli and American resolve and to demonstrate to Arab population that peace is not an option and that the existence of the Jews on their land cannot be recognized". Some of the attacks occurred just when foreign representatives landed in Israel, "to prevent the revival of the peace talks." Mr. Jason Greenblatt should take that into consideration.

The same jihadist war is also underway against the Americans and all "infidels": Christians, Jews, Yazidis, Hindus, Buddhists, and in a general manner all those who do not believe in the "religion of truth", namely Islam; and against those Muslims who compromise with such so-called infidels.
Eugene Kontorovich: Unsettled: A Global Study of Settlements in Occupied Territories
This Article provides the first comprehensive, global examination of state and international practice bearing on Article 49(6) of the Fourth Geneva Convention, which provides that an “Occupying Power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.” This provision is a staple of legal and diplomatic international discussions of the Arab-Israeli conflict, and serves as the basis for criticism of Israeli settlement policy.

Despite its frequent invocation in the Israeli context, scholars have never examined – or even considered – how the norm has been interpreted and applied in any other occupation context in the post-WWII era. For example, the International Committee of the Red Cross’s (ICRC) influential Study on Customary International Humanitarian Law lists 107 instances of national practice and UN practice applying or interpreting the prohibition, and all but two relate to Israel. Many questions exist about the scope and application of Art. 49(6)’s prohibition on “transfer,” but they have generally been answered on purely theoretically.

To better understand what Art. 49(6) does in fact demand, this Article closely examines its application in all other cases in which it could apply. Many of the settlement enterprises studied in this Article have never been discussed or documented. All of these situations involved the movement of settlers into the occupied territory, in numbers ranging from thousands to hundreds of thousands. Indeed, perhaps every prolonged occupation of contiguous habitable territory has resulted in significant settlement activity.
Melanie Phillips: Trump derangement, UK culture wars




Moshe Holtzberg Returns To India
It’s been nearly ten years since two terrorists stormed the Nariman House in Mumbai in order to kill the Jews who lived there. It was the Chabad House for the city, started by a young couple, Gavriel and Rivka “Rivky” Holtzberg. Two men stormed the building on November 26; by November 28, the terrorists, the, Holtzberg’s, and four Jews who had been passing through were dead. Rivky was five months pregnant at the time.

Their only son, Moshe Holtzberg, was two years old at the time. He was rescued from the horrors by his nanny, Sandra Samuel, who was granted honorary Israeli citizenship in 2010.

This week, Moshe returns to the Nariman House for the first time, along with Prime Minister Netanyahu, who is visiting India to meet once again with Narendra Modi. Moshe will be with Netanyahu to commemorate a plaque that will serve as the first step in a Living Memorial to his parents at the Nariman House, situated in the Colaba district of Mumbai.

It’s difficult to conceive of the violence that took place that November, and it’s even more difficult to imagine how it must feel to a 12 year-old whose life is defined by something he (presumably) can’t remember. But the concept of the Living Memorial speaks to how we can constructively think and talk about those nights, not by focusing on the circumstances of death, but on the prospect of continuing life.
Netanyahu says $500m Israel-India arms deal back on the table
A massive missile deal between India and Israeli defense contractor Rafael is back on the table, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Wednesday, as he wrapped up his third day of a state visit to the subcontinent that sought to foster closer economic ties.

Netanyahu’s visit came shortly after Rafael Advanced Defense Systems had confirmed that Delhi backed away from a $500 million agreement to purchase Spike anti-tank missiles, casting a cloud over the trip.

“They are reauthorizing the Spike deal,” Netanyahu said as his plane took off for Mumbai from Ahmadebad, where he spent the day with Indian counterpart Narendra Modi.

Netanyahu said the details were being worked out, raising questions as to whether the final agreement would be as large as the canceled weapons deal.

But the prime minister insisted that the outlook on the deal was “very positive.”

Netanyahu announced the news as the centerpiece of a series of achievements during his five-day trip to the Asian giant.
Israel, Argentina, work to cement economic ties
Argentina will export more kosher frozen beef to Israel, following an official visit of Argentinian Vice President Gabriela Michetti.

Michetti on Sunday completed an official visit to Israel with an economic team of vice ministers to turn the good relations between both countries “to concrete economic improvements,” she told Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a meeting last week.

The first improvement was announced during the visit: Israel extended the expiration of frozen Argentine beef from 45 to 85 days, opening a new market of Argentinean kosher meat at Israeli supermarkets. Meat accounts for 63 percent of Argentinean export to Israel.

“We have excellent ties, also with the Jewish community of Argentina. We are also trying to leverage the economic issues. We want to deepen these ties so that bilateral trade and investments will grow. We mainly need to realize this view, that everything is done via actions, trade, investments and the market,” Michetti told Netanyahu during their meeting.
IDF Blog: Top 5 Technological Innovations of 2017
Israel is often referred to as the “Start-Up Nation” and is world renowned for its technological advancements. In this spirit, the IDF has made strides in the technological field. In 2017, the IDF integrated new technology, including 62 Merkava tanks, 30 “Namer” armored personnel carriers, 150 operational trucks, 35 night vision goggles, 180 multicopter drones, 40 loaders, 400 parachutes, 21,000 aiming devices, 120 Chevy Savannas, and 257 Jeeps. All of this new equipment helped the IDF take steps towards the future.

1. Yahalom Glasses
Fighting on screens and using virtual reality goggles used to be just for gamers, but that’s no longer the case. Soldiers in the Yahalom Unit of the Engineering Corps are using these same goggles for an entirely different purpose; overcoming the challenges of underground warfare.

VR (virtual reality) goggles allow these soldiers to learn about several different types of ammunition in a visual and accessible way. There are three kinds of VR goggles that are currently used. The first allows the user to coordinate their movements in the real world with those in the virtual space. The second has built- in motion detectors. The third type is controlled using a mobile remote control, meaning one can walk around and choose objects on which to focus.

2. UAV with Night Vision
Until recently, the IDF only used UAVs for daylight photography. Thanks to new thermal cameras with night vision capabilities, the “Matrix” UAVs can focus on small objects, even something as small as an assailant raising a knife to attack someone.

The Matrix as a whole is more advanced than the UAVs that the IDF used previously. It can stay in the air longer, focus on small objects and fly just over a mile high.
IAF first: Female pilot appointed flight squadron commander
Commander of the Israeli Air Force Maj. Gen. Amikam Nurkin today appointed Major T. to be commander of an aviation squadron.

T., a transport pilot by training, will be promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel and will be the first woman pilot in this position and the first woman to achieve this rank.

In addition, the Commander of the Air Force appointed Major M., an airborne flight controller by training, to command the control unit in operational headquarters. Major M.was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel, becoming the first female air controller to be promoted to that rank.


Baroness alludes to Jews of Iraq in minorities debate
It is not often that the UK House of Lords is made aware of the tragic plight of the Jews of Iraq, but in a debate on religious minorities in Iraq on 11 January, Baroness Ruth Deech managed to devote a few minutes to their history while appealing for the British government to take a proactive approach to the protection of minorities.

"Sometimes it is difficult for us here in this tolerant country to understand the role played by religion elsewhere. In the area under debate today, it is not just a question of choice of belief; religion equates with identity. Indeed, one reason why so many countries in the Middle East are in turmoil is that the nation states there, sometimes created by western colonialists 100 years ago, do not coincide with religious boundaries.

Those new states have bundled together people who identify with their communities across boundaries rather than in their own neighbourhoods. To be a religious minority is seen by the ruling class as if one was a foreigner at best and a traitor to the community at worst. It has become especially dangerous to be a minority since the rise of Daesh. Nor is this attitude confined to Muslims; we have seen the atrocities committed against the Rohingya Muslims in Burma by the majority. But in determining cash and protection allocation, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees does not include religious persecution as one of the vulnerability categories. It is time for religious persecution to be up front in UN relief work. Will the Government urge the UN bodies to confront this?
Muslim activist rejects Revlon award because of Gal Gadot
Global cosmetics chain Revlon recently offered Amani al-Khatahtbeh a Changemaker Award for her advocacy on behalf of Muslim women. But the writer and activist said on Tuesday she will be declining the recognition, because the makeup company just named Gal Gadot as its global brand ambassador.

“I cannot accept this award from Revlon with Gal Gadot as the ambassador,” she wrote on social media. “Her vocal support of the Israeli Defense Forces’ actions in Palestine goes against MuslimGirl.com’s morals and values.”

Revlon did not respond to requests for comment by press time.

Khatahtbeh, who grew up in New Jersey as the daughter of Jordanian and Palestinian parents, is best known for starting the online magazine MuslimGirl.com in 2009. She also wrote a book, Muslim Girl: A Coming of Age, which was published in 2016.

“I can’t, in good conscience, accept this award from the brand and celebrate Gal’s ambassadorship after the IDF imprisoned a 16-year-old girl named Ahed Tamimi last month, an activist who is still currently incarcerated,” she wrote on Tuesday. “I think we are in a moment where we must persist that women’s empowerment includes ALL women.”
Jim Jefferies: The comedian with no boundaries takes on Tel Aviv
Jim Jefferies is an asshole. A hilariously entertaining asshole.

For close to two hours the Australian comedian who now lives in the US, paced a stage set up in the center of the Menorah Mivtachim Arena in Tel Aviv. He was vulgar, he was disgusting, he was offensive and he was uproariously funny. He was Jim Jefferies, basically.

As Jefferies pointed out on Hayom BaLayla with Guri Alfi Monday night, he didn't sell as many tickets as the last time he performed in Israel, in 2016. It's true that the hall was far from full, but Jefferies' target demographic of 20-something slightly unwashed men was out in full force. It's likely that the lower attendance had something to do with the influx of comedians in Israel this month; last week Chris Rock showed up and two weeks ago was Jerry Seinfeld - and there are few Israelis who can afford all three. In a way, Jefferies is the anti-Seinfeld, a man whose jokes are squeaky clean, well-rehearsed and often predictable. And Jefferies was a hell of a lot more entertaining.

With his signature lightning-fast wit, perfect timing and endless vulgarities the comedian was in top form Tuesday night. Perhaps he was happy to hear earlier in the day that his Comedy Central show was renewed for a second season. Or perhaps he's just doing what he loves. Either way, no topics were off limits, and no profanity left behind: His favorite and most frequent word of the night can't be printed here, but safe to say it rhymes with... runt. He was even selling mugs emblazoned with the word as people filed out of the show.

Jefferies had no problem jumping into jokes about his host country right from the start. "Stop fighting over this land, it's not that good," he said. "I mean, it's nice it's just not worth the argument, you know? I'll give you Tasmania or something... Florida maybe."
Ban on screening 'The Post' overturned in Lebanon
Lebanon’s interior ministry has overturned a ban on screening the newspaper drama The Post, directed by Steven Spielberg.

Lebanon’s censorship board had made the decision to ban the film based on a “boycott Israel” list, which Spielberg appears on since he shot some scenes from the 1993 film Schindler’s List in Jerusalem, the Hollywood Reporter reported Sunday, citing a source involved with the movie’s international roll out.

But on Wednesday, the interior ministry decided not to sign off on the decision. “Interior Minister Nohad Mashnouk is going to allow the film to be shown,” a senior ministry official told the French news agency AFP.

The company distributing the film in Lebanon confirmed to AFP that the film about the Washington Post’s pursuit and publishing of the Pentagon Papers would be released in movie theaters in the capital of Beirut and elsewhere on Thursday.

In the last three years, at least five films directed or produced by Spielberg were screened in Lebanon, including The BFG, and Bridge of Spies.

AFP reported that a second film was censored by Lebanon this week. The film, Jungle, starring Daniel Radcliffe, is the story of about Israeli adventurer Yossi Ghinsberg who got lost in an uncharted part of the Bolivian Amazon in 1981. The film already had been playing in theaters for two weeks when it was censored and removed. In addition to the main character in the film being Israeli, one of the film’s producers also is Israeli.
So you wanna boycott Israel?


The Dutch and Their Jews: The Never-Ending Shame of the Netherlands
Last month, a video showing a man waving a Palestinian flag and smashing the windows of a kosher Amsterdam restaurant went viral. Thereafter, two policemen — who stood by during the vandalism — overpowered the attacker.

Two days later, the attacker was freed by the police with a warning that if he committed additional crimes, he would be rearrested. Later, it became known that the perpetrator is a Palestinian-Syrian asylum-seeker who’s lived in the Netherlands for several years. He reportedly promised not to repeat his hate/terror crime in Amsterdam. The prosecution also withheld several salient facts from the public — for example, that the man was an ex-combatant in Syria’s civil war.

When the restaurant owner’s lawyer released this additional information, the prosecutor’s office said that it would seek disciplinary action against the lawyer. While the Palestinian Syrian was being investigated, the kosher restaurant was vandalized for a second time. Also, on New Year’s day, a rock destroyed the windows of the Chabad House in Central Amsterdam.

When the perpetrator of that attack came before the court, it was decided to request a psychological examination, which will take several months. In the meantime, the attacker will remain free. Michael Jacobs, a Jew, wasn’t so lucky. He was arrested for holding an Israeli flag on Amsterdam’s main square last summer because he stood too close to a pro-Palestinian demonstrator. Jacobs remained in jail for a full week. Yet there is nothing in the Dutch legal system which forbids his action.
Education Department Nominee Ken Marcus Is Being Treated Incredibly Unfairly
When I was a child — having been born in the 1950s, under the shadow of the Holocaust — I naively thought that antisemitism was mostly a thing of the past, and that it vanished in the gas chambers and ovens of Auschwitz. Yet within the past few decades, I have witnessed antisemitism blossom into a socially acceptable hatred that has managed to make its way into the corridors of polite society in a fashion that is as overt, obvious and unconcealed as it is alarming.

Antisemitism has migrated not only into college classrooms and campuses, but into the most respectable chambers of the US Senate, in the very committees whose mandate is to authorize and appropriate taxpayer-funded programs to eliminate racism and antisemitism as well as other hatreds –and to appoint professionals within those agencies.

Recently, much of this antisemitic invective has been directed against a colleague of mine, Ken Marcus, who has been nominated to serve as assistant secretary of education for civil rights within the Department of Education. For reasons that I will explain, Marcus has been the victim of an ugly and disgusting smear campaign.

Marcus served in a similar capacity from 2004-2008 under President George W. Bush, as assistant secretary of education for civil rights, and later as staff director of the US Commission on Civil Rights. He monitored and investigated complaints against minority groups, such as African Americans, Hispanics, Muslims, Jews, LGBTQ individuals and people with disabilities. A firm believer in free speech rights under the First Amendment, Marcus has always expressed the view that hate speech is protected speech under the Constitution, and that the best antidote for hate speech is more speech.
Dozens of Advocacy Groups Endorse Jewish Nominee for Top Education Department Civil Rights Post
Dozens of advocacy groups on Monday called for the confirmation of Kenneth Marcus — a leading figure in efforts to combat campus antisemitism — to a prominent civil rights post at the US Department of Education.

The founding president of the Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law — which aims to fight anti-Jewish and anti-Israel discrimination in universities and colleges — Marcus was nominated to serve as assistant secretary at the Office of Civil Rights (OCR) under Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos. He previously held the same position under President George W. Bush from 2003-2004.

Marcus’ record was strongly endorsed by 60 “Jewish, Christian, education and civil rights” organizations in a letter sent to members of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee, which is expected to consider his nomination this week.

The groups — representing “millions of your constituents” — praised Marcus’ protection of both civil liberties and free speech rights during a career that has included posts at the US Commission on Civil Rights and the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

During his service, “Ken championed the civil rights of all Americans in a wide range of areas, including strengthening Title IX enforcement, fighting against racial segregation, increasing fair housing rights for the disabled, and ensuring that Jewish, Sikh and Muslim students were protected under Title VI,” the letter said.
BBC News continues to blame Palestinian violence on US
The report then went on to promote equivalence between the murder of an Israeli civilian in a terror attack and the deaths of Palestinians engaged in violent rioting and terrorism.

“At least 16 Palestinians and one Israeli have now been killed since 6 December, when President Donald Trump reversed decades of US policy by recognising Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and starting preparations to move the US embassy.

Fourteen of the Palestinians have been killed in clashes with Israeli troops, while two have died as a result of Israeli air strikes in response to rocket fire from Gaza.”


The BBC refrained (once again) from informing readers that the two people who “died as a result of Israeli air strikes” were members of Hamas.

“In one of the IAF strikes late Friday on a Hamas base in Nusseirat, located in the central Gaza Strip, two Palestinians were killed. The Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza named the men as Mahmud al-Atal, 28 and Mohammed al-Safdi, 30. […]

The terror group later confirmed the dead men were members of its military wing.”


As we see the BBC continues to frame the recent rise in Palestinian violence as having been caused exclusively by the US Administration’s announcement recognising Jerusalem as the capital of Israel – rather than by the choices made by those throwing rocks and firebombs, launching missiles, stabbing a security guard at a bus station or shooting a volunteer first-aider on his way home.

At the same time, the corporation continues to refrain from producing any serious reporting on the long-standing efforts made by terror organisations to increase attacks (particularly in Judea & Samaria) and the incitement appearing in official PA media and on the social media of Palestinian factions.
Hamas ‘Hardtalk’ interview rebuts BBC messaging, perpetuates inaccuracies – part one
Sackur’s presentation of course would not have surprised anyone familiar with the BBC’s long history of promoting the ‘one man’s terrorist’ narrative that fails to distinguish between means and ends and results in inconsistent BBC reporting on terrorism in differing locations.

Another notable point was Sackur’s adoption of Hamas’ own terminology and his breach [from 20:09] of the BBC Academy’s “journalists’ guide to facts and terminology” which, as noted here recently on two occasions, instructs the corporation’s staff not to use the term Palestine except in very specific circumstances.

Sackur: “Is the resistance in Palestine now in the hands of ordinary people – young people particularly – not with veteran leaders like you?”

Viewers and listeners may have noticed that during this interview some of the messaging they have previously received from the BBC was contradicted.

For example, the BBC’s long-standing and repeated claim that the Gaza Strip is occupied even though Israel withdrew from the territory over twelve years ago was contradicted by Zahar [from 04:00].

Zahar: “But lastly, lastly by our method of self-resistance, self-defence against the occupation in Gaza we succeed[ed] to eliminate the occupation in Gaza.”
Hamas ‘Hardtalk’ interview rebuts BBC messaging, perpetuates inaccuracies – part two
As we saw in part one of this post, the January 8th edition of ‘Hardtalk‘ (aired on the BBC World News channel, the BBC News channel and on BBC World Service radio) was devoted to an interview with Hamas’ Mahmoud Zahar in which some of the messaging audiences have previously received from the BBC was contradicted.

Throughout the interview Zahar also promoted numerous falsehoods, smears and inaccuracies which went unchallenged by presenter Stephen Sackur – thereby leaving audiences with misleading impressions and false information.

1) Despite Hamas’ known misappropriation of thousands of tons of building materials intended for the repair and reconstruction of civilian homes damaged during the 2014 conflict and its spending of millions of dollars on tunnel construction and missile production rather than on public services for the impoverished residents of the Gaza Strip, Sackur failed to challenge Zahar’s claim that the poor quality of life in Gaza has nothing to do with Hamas “management”.

Zahar: “Yes, our life is very miserable – not because of bad management on our side but because of the crime committed by the Israeli occupation and by the cooperation of the Palestinian Authority with them and lastly by the impact of the international community, represented mainly by Mr Trump, against our human rights in the most important third shrine in Islam, al Aqsa Mosque.”
Student leaders to be taken to Auschwitz in bid to combat campus anti-Semitism
Student union leaders are set to be taken to visit Auschwitz to tackle anti-Semitism on campus, the Government has said.

Students from all 108 universities and university colleges in England are set to be taken to visit the former concentration camp to learn about the Holocaust as part of a Government-funded project.

The £144,000 programme has been announced amid concerns about high levels of anti-Semitism among university students.

Last month then-universities minister Jo Johnson said there were "unacceptable" levels of anti-Semitism among students.

Two sabbatical officers from each university will visit the former Nazi concentration camps at Auschwitz-Birkenau in Poland in trips run by the Holocaust Educational Trust.

Student leaders will then take part in seminars which will teach them how to identify and tackle antisemitism at their own university.

The Government said the original 200 student leaders were expected to pass their experience on to another 7,500 students across the country as part of a programme of events.
StandWithUs UK's Tamir Oren on Antisemitism on UK Campuses


Chelsea FC Launch Campaign to Tackle Anti-Semitism in Football
Chelsea Football Club is launching a campaign to fight anti-Semitism in football, targeting fans as well as players and the club’s support staff.

The long-term initiative begins on 31 January at Chelsea’s Premier League game against Bournemouth and forms part of what the club describes as “on-going inclusion work”, through the Chelsea Foundation’s Building Bridges campaign. The initiative is supported by the club’s owner, Roman Abramovich.

Chelsea Football Club wants to raise awareness of and educate players, staff, fans and the wider community about anti-Semitism in football.

The move follows anti-Semitic chants by Chelsea FC fans during their win at Leicester last September that were condemned by the club.

As Breitbart Jerusalem reported, on that occasion blues supporters repeated a song about Alvaro Morata previously used to abuse London rivals Tottenham, who have a large Jewish fanbase.

“Alvaro, Alvaro. He comes from Madrid. He hates the f****** Yids,” sang Chelsea supporters at the King Power Stadium.

“The club and the players appreciate the fans’ passionate support away from home, of course,” Chelsea head of communications Steve Atkins said in that game’s aftermath. “But the language in that song is not acceptable at all.”
‘You’re Not Going to Jew Us Down?’: US Reality TV Host’s Antisemitic Outburst Sparks Anger
The presenter of a top-rated US reality TV show is in the spotlight for using an antisemitic epithet during a scene in which a guest was challenged for not haggling over a price of $36,000.

In the most recent episode of the DIY Network‘s “Texas Flip N Move” — a reality show in which houses and other lodgings are refurbished and then “flipped” at a profit — that aired last Friday night, Jan. 12, presenter Toni Snow asked the guest whether he was going to “Jew us down” after she and her sister Donna informed him that $36,000 was their “price point” for a refurbished school bus.

After the delighted guest replied, “That’s a done deal right there, all day,” Toni Snow interjected: “You’re not even going to bicker a little bit? Jew us down?”

“Texas Flip N Move” is one of the DIY Network‘s leading shows, currently in its seventh season.

A spokesperson for the Anti-Defamation League roundly condemned the show, pointing out the connection between Toni Snow’s remark and the ancient antisemitic depiction of Jews as driven by financial greed.
Israeli tech firms raise $5.24 billion in 2017, up 9% from 2016
Israeli high-tech companies raised $5.24 billion in 620 deals in 2017, an increase of 9 percent compared to the $4.83 billion attracted in 2016, in 673 deals, Israel’s IVC Research Center and attorneys Zysman, Aharoni, Gayer & Co. (ZAG S&W) said in a report Wednesday.

The total capital raised by Israeli high-tech companies has been growing since 2013, the data showed. The jump in 2017 was fed by four large deals of over $100 million each, capturing 12 percent of the total amount raised. These were funds raised by cybersecurity startup Cybereason, ridesharing firm Via, AI- insurance firm Lemonade and Skybox Security.

The average financing round in 2017 rose to an average $8.5 million in 2017, from an average $3.6 million in 2013, the IVC-ZAG 2017 Israeli High-Tech Capital Raising Survey said.

Israeli VC funds invested $814 million in 2017, the highest sum since 2013, and an increase of 25 percent from $651 million in 2016, making up some 16 percent of all of the money raised by Israeli high-tech companies, with the other 84% of funds raised by foreign VCs and other investors, both Israeli and foreign.
#WeRemember Holocaust Remembrance Campaign Spreads to 45 Countries
Ahead of International Holocaust Remembrance Day on Jan. 27, the World Jewish Congress (WJC) has launched a global campaign encouraging millions of people to use social media to raise awareness about the Holocaust.

The campaign calls on people in every country to hold up a sign with the words “We Remember,” and post it on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter using the hashtag #WeRemember.

The campaign took off last Monday and has already spread to 45 countries.

“Antisemitism is more prevalent today than it has been at any time since World War II, and bigotry and discrimination still rear their ugly heads all around the world,” said WJC CEO Robert Singer. “This is why we all must declare, together, that we remember.”

Holocaust survivors, lawmakers, government ministers and religious leaders from around the world, as well as soccer and basketball stars, have joined the project and have been photographed holding up “We Remember” signs.

WJC President Ronald Lauder said it was the responsibility of the young generation to teach their friends about the horrors of hatred and spread the message that “never again” means “never again.”
On Holocaust Remembrance Day, Israel to honor foreign diplomats who rescued Jews
In the summer of 1944, Albert Franko was being deported from the Nazi-occupied Greek city of Piraeus to Auschwitz, when suddenly he was taken off the train — because his wife was a Turkish citizen.

His life was saved due to the personal intervention of Selahattin Ülkümen, Turkey’s consul-general in Rhodes.

At his own initiative and with tenacious perseverance, Ülkümen saved some 50 Jews. Most of them weren’t Turkish citizens, but he told the Gestapo that Turkish law considers spouses of Turks to be citizens themselves, demanding their release. Survivors later realized that no such law existed, and that Ülkümen had invented it to save their lives.

Some 75 years later, Israel’s Foreign Ministry is honoring Ülkümen and 35 other foreign diplomats who risked their lives to save Jews during the Holocaust with a monument at its Jerusalem headquarters and an exhibition to be displayed in more than 60 Israeli missions around the globe.

The exhibition, called “Beyond Duty,” pays tribute to the diplomats, hailing from 21 countries, who were recognized by Yad Vashem as Righteous Among the Nations.

“In a time of supreme moral testing and in the darkest hours of the Jewish people, these people acted by the dictate of their conscience in order to save Jews, without regard for personal and professional consequence,” said Ran Yaakoby, who spearheaded the project.
Part of the exhibition’s panel on Selahattin Ülkümen (courtesy Foreign Ministry)

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Israel is eternally grateful and will forever salute their courage and moral example,” said Yaakoby, the director of the ministry’s Department for Combating Anti-Semitism and Holocaust Remembrance.



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This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 12 years and over 25,000 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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