Monday, March 11, 2019

From Ian:

Seth Mandel: No one loses a debate over anti-Semitism. Except Jews.
Here’s the thing, though: None of this is going to hurt anyone involved, politically.

The Democratic Party’s behavior last week was unconscionable. Freshman Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (N.Y.) led the rebellion against Pelosi’s symbolic denunciation of anti-Semitism, calling the idea of a reprimand “hurtful.” Four presidential candidates — Bernie Sanders, Kamala D. Harris, Elizabeth Warren and Kirsten Gillibrand — made it clear they feared Ocasio-Cortez, not the speaker. Sanders said umbrage at Omar’s comments was an attempt at “stifling” debate. Harris took it a step further and said those offended were putting Omar in danger.

It’ll cost the party nothing.

Please stop with the predictions that the Jewish vote in 2020 is suddenly up for grabs. Democrats may have thrown Jews who were offended by Omar under the bus, but they’ll file provisional ballots while looking up at the rear axle if they have to. And Republicans who think they don’t play a role in that are fooling themselves. “We finally censured Steve King after he won his ninth term” isn’t the bumper sticker of a party that’s done everything in its power to reach Jewish voters — especially when it’s still led by a president who infamously equivocated on racist, anti-Semitic marchers in Charlottesville.

The irony is the vote Thursday proves just how wrong Omar and anyone else who sees shadowy powers directing Washington really are. Far from controlling the conversation, Jews are powerless to stop it.

Anti-Semitism is not a partisan issue, no matter how it might have looked last week. Anti-Semitism is a virus. It mutates and adapts to survive and thrive under whatever conditions currently prevail.

The defense many Democrats made of Omar’s statements is that they weren’t anti-Semitic, they were targeting Israel and its allies in Washington. But anti-Semitism often hides behind “anti-Zionism.” As Izabella Tabarovsky, who grew up in the Soviet Union, wrote in the Forward about one such case, “It was under the banner of anti-Zionism that Soviet anti-Semitism blossomed.” From the outside, the Soviet campaign against Zionism may have looked like criticism of an external-facing ideology, but to those living under the Soviet thumb, the truth was plain: “We were targets of anti-Semitic insults in the streets. Our educational and professional opportunities were diminished. When I was deciding what college I wanted to apply to to study foreign languages, I learned that my top two schools were off limits to me: They prepared students for careers in foreign service, and these were closed to the untrustworthy Jews.”

Ross Douthat: Is Anti-Semitism Exceptional? The inevitable decline of left-wing philo-Semitism.
Finally, a great deal of the new anti-Semitism — from the recent wave of hate crimes in New York City to the anti-Jewish violence befouling Europe — would still be coming from minority and immigrant communities that are seen as essential to left-of-center and especially radical-left politics going forward, making them more difficult than right-wing anti-Semitism for the left to full-throatedly condemn.

Of course right-wing anti-Semites haven’t gone away either — which is part of why anti-anti-Omar Democrats can tell themselves that by downgrading Jewish exceptionalism, trading a specific philo-Semitism for a general politics of all-bigotry-is-bad, they are asking liberal Jews to make a sacrifice that’s essential for the greater good of defeating the greater enemy, which is still the reactionary right.

Whether this argument works depends in part on what the post-Trump right ultimately becomes — whether there’s a way to marry nationalism and philo-Semitism, perhaps wooing Jewish voters rightward, or whether any form of right-wing populism inevitably brings anti-Semitism roaring back.

But it also depends on whether the assumptions of Omar’s left-wing defenders are justified — whether anti-Semitism can be contained if it’s treated as one form of bigotry among many, or whether the perverse resilience of Jew-hatred is such that cultures choose between philo-Semitism and anti-Semitism, with only a swift downward slope lying in between.
Reviews of Friedman's 'Spies of No Country'
'Spies of No Country' proves the point that Israel's early Arabic-speaking spies had no country to call their own own - except Israel, writes Lily Meyer for NPR:

For half a decade, Friedman has been working hard, and publicly, to dispel easy narratives about Israel. He rose to attention — and controversy — through a pair of essays about media bias in coverage of Israel, and has remained on the beat ever since. His perspective is unusual: Israeli by choice, he clarifies his own bias in every piece but he writes to complicate, not to defend. In his third book, Spies of No Country: Secret Lives at the Birth of Israel, Friedman rejects the narrative of Israel as a country filled with Europeans and their descendants, motivated by memories and guilt like my grandfather's. And he does it through a spy story.

Spies of No Country focuses on a fledgling Israeli intelligence unit called the Arab Section, and on four of its spies. The Arab Section emerged at the tail end of British colonialism, at a moment when the Palestine was filling with Jews. The British had made hazy promises, but none clear enough to prevent the war that ensued. The Jews in Palestine formed an army, which in turn formed the Arab Section, a fledgling espionage operation easiest to understand as a version of the Soviets' Directorate S. Where the USSR trained Russians to live in America, though, the Arab Section did something much murkier. It trained Middle Eastern Jews to embed themselves in the very countries they were from.

Friedman builds his story around four such Jews: Gamliel Cohen, Havakuk Cohen, Isaac Shoshan, and Yakuba Cohen. (None of the Cohens were related.) All four were native Arabic speakers. Yakuba grew up in Palestine, Havakuk in Yemen, and Gamliel and Isaac in Syria. In present-day Israeli parlance, they were Mizrahi. In the parlance of the Arab Section, they were not spies but mista'arvim, a word Friedman often uses in its full English translation: Ones Who Become Like Arabs. But it's hard to parse what made them like Arabs. "They were native to the Arab world," Friedman writes, "as native as Arabs. If the key to belonging to the Arabic nation was the Arabic language, as the Arab nationalists claimed, they were inside. So were they really...pretending to be Arabs, or were they pretending to be people who weren't Arabs pretending to be Arabs?"

Jeremy Corbyn Aide Wrote Hitler Was 'Uniquely Excoriated Because His Victims Were Almost All White Europeans'
In a book he coauthored in 2009, a man who is now a trusted aide to British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn argued that Nazi leader Adolph Hitler was unfairly singled out for criticism because “his victims were almost all white Europeans.”

Andrew Murray wrote in “The Imperial Controversy: Challenging the Empire Apologists,” which he coauthored with Seumas Milne, who is currently Corbyn’s communications director:

Hitler is uniquely excoriated because his victims were almost all white Europeans, while those of Britain (and other classic colonialisms — French, Belgian, Dutch, Italian and Wilhelmine German) were Asian, African and Arabs. That Hitler’s regime is seen as the most bestial of modern times is not of course objectionable. What needs to be confronted is the view that the crimes of other great powers of the last 150 years or so, being less lurid than those of the Nazis, can therefore be subject to a more nuanced judgment, in which the deaths of millions of people on the one hand can be offset against the construction of railways on the other. The British Empire was almost certainly responsible for more human deaths, albeit over a considerably longer period of time, than Hitler was.

Corbyn, who is regarded warmly by Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), who also is close chums with anti-Semitic Rep. Ilhan OImar (D-MN) and refused to condemn the anti-Semitism within the Women’s March, has his own history of anti-Semitism, including calling members of Hamas and Hezbollah friends, carrying a wreath and visiting a plaque honoring the terrorist group Black September, which murdered Israel athletes at the 1972 Munich Olympics, opposing taking down a mural that was blatantly anti-Semitic, and tolerating increasing anti-Semitism in his own party, the latter a posture which has been emulated by the Democratic Party in America, leading to some referring to the current “Corbynization” of the Democratic party. (h/t jzaik)

Why a now-infamous case of antisemitism in Labour is even worse than you thought
Here is what Labour did in response.

No action was taken for three months, during which time Ms Bibby represented her local constituency, Liverpool Riverside, as a delegate at the national party conference. At the end of that time, it was announced that Ms Bibby would receive “antisemitism training”, with Labour claiming they had investigated the case.

We now know that the original decision not to suspend Ms Bibby was down to Thomas Gardiner, a Camden Labour councillor and head of the party’s governance and legal unit. Mr Gardiner advised Ms Bibby should not be suspended because the picture was “anti-Israel, not anti-Jewish.”

Any compliance unit worthy of the name would have done a basic check, given the clear link to the original publisher in the picture. They would have found that article, and the exchange between Ms Bibby and the writer in the comments, and they would have kicked her out of the party.

We must assume that the compliance unit did not carry out such a check. To have done so, uncovered this evidence, and still recommend that Ms Bibby not even be suspended, let alone expelled, is almost too grotesque to think about.

But it has got to a point where Jewish communal trust in Labour is so low that there are understandably people who will look at this situation and suspect that Labour’s compliance unit did know; that they knew everything, and nonetheless did nothing, simply because they don’t like Jews very much.

And so, looking at the Labour party itself this time, we have to once again ask: malevolence or stupidity?
The Omar Affair
There are two parts to the Omar affair, and despite the furor and all the statements and counterstatements, and the tweets and countertweets, not enough has been said about either. I will deal with them in this order: first, Rep. Omar’s lies and, second, the fearfulness of her critics

1) I don’t think that Rep. Omar is a liar; she is just repeating other people’s lies. It’s possible that she believes them or, maybe, she thinks they are half-true and politically useful (and she has proven that they are politically useful). In any case, her claims are false. AIPAC, aka the Zionist lobby—actually the right-wing Zionist lobby; there are others on the left—does not control American policy in the Middle East. The organization can make a lot of noise; it has influence in Congress—though less than its leaders tell its donors—and the influence comes from the money it spends. I am sure that there are politicians in the House and Senate who never fail to answer AIPAC’s phone calls and who speak passionately about Israel when they are asked to do so. But that’s about all they do, for Congress has very little impact on what America does in the Middle East or anywhere else. Putting Omar on the House Foreign Affairs Committee is probably a good idea; she will learn how little the committee has to do with foreign affairs.

American foreign policy is made in the White House. That may be constitutionally wrong, but it’s been true for a long time. When the people elect a president who agrees with AIPAC, the organization looks very powerful. And when the people elect a president who disagrees with AIPAC, the organization is powerless. I don’t remember how AIPAC responded to Carter’s Middle East policy or to Clinton’s. In neither case was AIPAC influential, not when Israel withdrew from the Sinai and not when Rabin and Arafat shook hands on the White House lawn; its leaders were probably not consulted. But its lack of influence was most clear in the Obama years, when it disapproved of almost everything Obama did in the Middle East, from the Cairo speech to the treaty with Iran, and could do nothing to change his policies

There are indeed Zionist lobbies at work in Washington. They advocate different policies, and sometimes one or another of them gets its way, but not because of its power or its money. It finds people in office who share its ideological commitments, or it doesn’t. Omar’s claim about “the Benjamins” is simply false. Money counts in American politics, but not in the way she says it does. American support for Israel has moral, political, religious, and strategic reasons; it isn’t bought. That falsehood is more important than the anti-Semitism that probably motivates it—or, better, we shouldn’t care about Omar’s moral character but rather about what she says.

2) Jewish critics of Omar have complained more about her character or her anti-Semitism than about the lies she repeats. It is as if they think that what Omar is doing wrong is this: She is telling the world about Jewish power. “Sha; we don’t want the goyim to know.” The critics should be saying that we Jews don’t have that kind of power; we never have. We hope to influence American policy toward Israel, a perfectly legitimate hope, but we don’t agree about what the policy should be. Evangelical Christians have far more influence than we do—in part because of their greater numbers, in part because they don’t disagree so much among themselves.
Prof. Phyllis Chesler: I thought the NYTimes couldn't get worse, but it has
Every single day, I read biased articles against Israel and against Jews in the newspaper most revered by its Jewish readers: The New York Times. Today, a two page article with ten photos appears condemning what the Israeli government allegedly did seventy years ago. According to the article, the government “disappeared” “thousands” of Mizrahi or Arab Jewish newborns from their mothers and gave them to infertile European Holocaust survivors to raise; the article wonders whether the government wanted these children to become more Western, less Eastern. The article admits that three separate government commissions concluded that “about fifty children were unaccounted for” and that the others died.

If the Israeli government did this, even to one child, it was wrong, a crime, a sin, but unfortunately not an uncommon one. Americans did likewise with Native-Indian and poor immigrant children; Australians and Canadians with indigenous children; Argentina did this with the children of the political prisoners whom they “disappeared.” I could go on.

The Paper of Record does not expose these other countries day after day, focusing on any mistake, crime, or sin one of them has committed, either yesterday or a century ago. It does increasingly condemn American sins even as it fails to condemn even greater sins committed in “the developing world.” (This is the politically correct way to describe the Muslim and Communist world.)

It does so only where Israel is concerned. I used to think it was so bad that it could not possibly get any worse but I was wrong; it has indeed gotten a lot worse with its editorials, op-eds, and ostensible news coverage which critiques Israel and which occasionally throws us a bone, usually a piece by Matti Friedman or Yossi Klein Halevi.

This past week, the New York Times published an article titled: "Concerns Raised Over Power Wielded by a Pro-Israel Lobbying Giant.” Bad enough the reporter does not know that AIPAC raises and spends a minuscule portion of what all other foreign and most other national lobbies spend; worse, are the two photos that accompany the article.

One photo depicts the new Congresswoman from Minnesota, Ilhan Omar, wearing hijab, which she does every minute she is on the job and on the street. Right beneath her is a photo of AIPAC activist, Stephen Fiske, shown putting on t’fillin, (phylacteries) something that I doubt he does on the job, on the street, or all day long. In fact, I know he does not; no religious Jew does, except for some who continue studying Torah in the synagogue after prayers.. This is a time-bound, once a day prayer-related obligation and it is done either privately or in a synagogue. Not in Congress and not while lobbying Congress.

What the captions suggest is that each religion has a way of signifying membership. And this is a false equivalency. The caption also misspells the word “anti-Semitic.” It appears as “anti-Semetic.”
Zeldin: If Rep. Omar Were Republican, the Dem Resolution 'Would've Been Naming Names'
Sunday on New York AM 970 radio’s “The Cats Roundtable,” Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY) commented on the House resolution to condemn hate in response to Rep. Ilhan Omar’s (D-MN) numerous antisemitic remarks.

The Jewish Republican blasted the House Democrats, saying if Omar were a Republican, the resolution would have named her specifically for her antisemitism, much it like it did for Rep. Steve King (R-IA) in a resolution in January.

“In January, the House nearly unanimously voted to condemn white supremacy, naming a Republican member, removing that Republican member from his committee assignments. Now, after one antisemitic comment after another by this Democratic Member of Congress, instead of a resolution naming names and singularly, emphatically, unequivocally condemning antisemitism, and removing that Member from the House Foreign Affairs Committee; instead you had a resolution that kept getting diluted and watered down and filled with moral equivalency, which is dangerous,” Zeldin told host John Catsimatidis.

He continued, “If [Omar] was a Republican, this resolution would’ve been naming names, she would’ve been removed from the House Foreign Affairs Committee and we would be talking about antisemitism solely, singularly and forcefully.”
Is it any surprise anti-Israel Rep. Rashida Tlaib was funded by Soros-group before running for Congress?
Mary reported in her post entitled Report: Rep. Rashida Tlaib Penned Column for Anti-Semitic Farrakhan Publication in 2006:

Tlaib has only been in Congress a little over a month, but she came on with a bang by having notorious anti-Semite Linda Sarsour, the woman who loves Farrakhan and terrorist Rasmea Odeh, with her at her swearing in. Also, someone covered Israel on the map in her office with a Post-It that says Palestine.

After her swearing-in, Tlaib dined with Abbas Hamideh, “a ‘Palestinian right of return’ activist who has called Israel a ‘terrorist entity.’ Hamideh has also tweeted that Israel has a “delusional ISIS-like ideology” and that the creation of the country was a ‘crime.’”

So we took note when the Free Beacon reported on the connection of Tlaib to the Soros network. Soros, through various groups he funds particularly the Open Society entities, is a major funder of the anti-Israel movement.

The Washington Free Beacon reports not only on the Soro-backed funding of Tlaib, but discrepancies in reporting of that funding.:

Tlaib also reported a $68,307 salary for a “Leadership in Government Fellowship” in 2017 but did not disclose the name of the organization who provided the funding for the fellowship, as required by the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Ethics.

The Washington Free Beacon reached out to George Soros’s spokesperson in December and were provided copies of tax forms for all entities that are run by the liberal billionaire and make up his Open Society network.

On page 97 of the 321-page tax form for the Open Society Institute, the legal name for the Open Society Foundation, an expenditure of $85,307 is shown to Tlaib for a “leadership in government fellowship,” the Free Beacon reported.

Hirono Defends Omar: ‘Everything We Say Can Be Viewed in a Certain Way’
Sen. Mazie Hirono (D., Hawaii) defended Rep. Ilhan Omar after she suggested supporters of Israel have dual loyalty, arguing Sunday that "everything we say can be viewed in a certain way."

"Ilhan Omar was talking at a fundraising event and talked about loyalty to a foreign country, and those comments were condemned by many Democrats as anti-Semitic. Do you believe her comments were anti-Semitic?" host Kasie Hunt asked Hirono during an appearance on MSNBC's Kasie DC.

"I don't think she intended her comments to be anti-Semitic, but we're in an environment now where just about everything we say can be viewed in a certain way. And what we have is a lot of hate speech against immigrants, against Muslims, against all kinds of people," Hirono responded. "That is why I'm glad that when the House actually took a vote, that they basically condemned all hate speech. And we certainly are hearing a lot of hate speech from the Republicans and the right."

Hirono accused Republicans of "suddenly" going after "one person."
Linda Sarsour Takes Credit For House's Weakened Anti-Semitism Resolution
Last Week, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a feeble resolution to condemn anti-Semitism after Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) made several anti-Semitic comments. Before being overwhelmingly passed, the resolution was delayed to allow for additional condemnations of more forms of biogry than just anti-Semitism. Linda Sarsour, a leader of the Women's March who has also been frequently accused of peddling anti-Semitism, took credit for the change in language.

"So many of you know that our sister, Congresswoman Ilhan Omar was under attack," Sarsour said. "And you know, being able to mobilize progressive leaders across the country to sign on to a letter to organize a press conference in support of Ilhan Omar, to call on the Democratic leadership to actually expand the language of the resolution to include condemning all forms of bigotry because that’s the kind of movement we are a part of."

"The Women’s March is a movement that unequivocally rejects all forms of racism, anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, homophobia, transphobia," Sarsour continued, "and that’s what we called on the Democratic leadership to do — that in our lifetime we made history with a resolution that is going to be in the public record for life."

Prior to the watered down resolution passing last week, Sarsour criticized Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) for supporting the initial resolution draft by castigating Pelosi’s "white feminism" and ignorance of "intersectionality."

"Nancy is a typical white feminist upholding the patriarchy doing the dirty work of powerful white men," Sarsour wrote on Facebook. "God forbid the men are upset — no worries, Nancy to the rescue to stroke their egos."
NYU Invites Anti-Semitic Speakers to Promote Progressive Agenda
NYU recently invited Women’s March co-founder, Linda Sarsour, to discuss migration, refugees and sanctuary at a March Skirball Talks, a program which, according to the school, brings “visionaries from the worlds of politics, the arts, sciences, academia and more” to campus.

NYU seems to have a penchant for welcoming anti-Semitic speakers to campus. Last October, its Hagop Kevorkian Center for Near Eastern Studies, a co-sponsor of the Sarsour talk, held an event, “Panel Discussion: The Assault on the Right to Boycott,” which attempted to legitimize the boycotting of Israel. Jasbir Puar, a Rutgers queer theorist professor, was one of the featured participants. Her stock-in-trade is libeling Israel as a nation that harvests Palestinian organs and intentionally maims and stunts Palestinians to permanently debilitate and disable them.

Like Puar, Sarsour is not bashful about her racism. She used her social media to share an article accusing the Jewish community of waging a “profound war on black people.” Appalled by this slur, Blues singer/writer Muddy Waters’ daughter, Mercy Morganfield, previously an ally of Sarsour and former head of the Women’s March D.C. chapter responded, “Linda Sarsour is an anti-Semite… Writing that Jewish people are waging war on black people is an attack. It is vicious. It is vile. And it is not true.”

At the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) Fall 2018 convention, Sarsour blasted an Anti-Defamation League (ADL)-sponsored training program bringing American police officials to Israel to learn defense tactics against terrorism. She blamed Jews for promoting police violence against unarmed blacks.
CCSC votes down BDS referendum by secret ballot following 4 hours of tense debate
Following a four-hour meeting that attracted over 150 spectators, saw two student representatives threaten to quit the council, and drew tears from attendees, the Columbia College Student Council shot down a referendum to gauge student support for the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement via an anonymous vote Sunday night.

CCSC voted overwhelmingly against including a similar referendum on the ballot in 2017, but the debate over BDS has continued to grow on campus. Last spring, the Barnard Student Government Association added a referendum to its ballot asking students whether or not they support Columbia University Apartheid Divest’s campaign to divest from companies that “profit from or engage in the State of Israel’s treatment of Palestinians,” aiming to reflect the national BDS movement calling for the end “international support for Israel’s oppression of Palestinians.”

The referendum, which saw the highest voter turnout for any SGA election, passed with a 64.3 percent majority, though Barnard President Sian Beilock announced prior to the election that she would ignore its results.

Neither Columbia nor Barnard publicly discloses specifics of where its endowment is invested, meaning that students receive no information on whether the University even holds ties with relevant companies.

Sunday’s vote—which council members elected to hold anonymously—failed to meet the two-thirds majority needed to pass the referendum, with 20 council members against, 17 in support, and one abstention from CCSC President Jordan Singer, CC ’19. Members from Aryeh, Students Supporting Israel, and the CUAD coalition, composed of representatives of Columbia Students for Justice in Palestine and Columbia/Barnard Jewish Voice for Peace, spoke before the council while many participants offered commentary in response.
Al-Quds Day organiser sells Israeli products
A pharmacy run by the Al-Quds Day organiser who claimed Zionists were “responsible” for Grenfell sells Israeli products, Jewish News has discovered.

Nazim Ali, whose 2017 comments at the annual anti-Israel march in London heralded a long legal fight, is managing director of Chelsea Pharmacy, which was this week shown to stock products from Israel’s Teva Pharmaceuticals.

A visit to the Sloane Avenue pharmacy by an undercover shopper on Monday revealed it stocked Teva products including Salamol Easi-Breathe, which is used by asthma sufferers.

While the marketing authorisation holder is Norton Healthcare Ltd, a Teva UK spokesman confirmed this week that it was a Teva product.

News that Ali’s Chelsea Pharmacy stocks Israeli products will come as an embarrassment to the director of the Wembley-based Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC), the principal organiser of the pro-Hezbollah rally.

It was in his IHRC role that Ali angered the Jewish community two years ago by appearing to blame the Grenfell tragedy on “Zionists” and calling the Israel Defence Forces a “terrorist organisation”.

Addressing Al-Quds Day counter-demonstrators at the time, he said: “These people do not know what justice is because it is their supporters who are supporting the Tory Party. That’s who they are: Zionists who give money to the Tory Party to kill people in high rise blocks.”

New PA PM not newsworthy for the BBC
With BBC audiences still unaware of the fact that the Palestinian Authority’s prime minister resigned in late January, a new – and of course unelected – prime minister was appointed by Mahmoud Abbas on March 10th.

“Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas appointed longtime ally Mohammad Shtayyeh as prime minister on Sunday, a senior official said, in a move seen as part of efforts to further isolate Hamas.

Abbas asked Shtayyeh, a member of the central committee of the Palestinian president’s Fatah party, to form a new government, Fatah vice president Mahmoud al-Aloul told AFP.”

A member of Fatah’s central committee as noted above, Shtayyeh has a record of denying Jewish history in the region and whitewashing terrorism. That of course has not prevented him from being interviewed by the BBC on numerous occasions over the years.

In late 2014 listeners to BBC World Service radio heard Shtayyeh claim that areas assigned by the League of Nations to the creation of a Jewish homeland but occupied by Egypt and Jordan between 1948 and 1967 were “Palestinian territory”

“This is a strategic shift in which we are leaving the bi-lateral negotiations that has not been really the answer for ending the Israeli occupation that has occurred on the Palestinian territory in 1967.”

He also gave an inaccurate and misleading portrayal of years of avoidance of serious negotiation by the PA.

“We have given the negotiations every single possibility and unfortunately the United States has not really made Netanyahu thirsty enough to bring him to the river to drink.”
Whitewashing Hizballah on BBC Radio 4
Listeners heard no mention of the fact that the 2006 UN Security Council resolution 1701 stated that there should be “no authority other than that of the Government of Lebanon” and that previous accords pertaining to “the disarmament of all armed groups in Lebanon, so that, pursuant to the Lebanese cabinet decision of 27 July 2006, there will be no weapons or authority in Lebanon other than that of the Lebanese State” should be implemented. Predictably, neither Husain nor her interviewee bothered to inform listeners that Hizballah is funded and supplied with weapons (also in violation of that UN resolution) by a foreign power.

Husain went on to once again promote the chimera of different ‘wings’ of the terror group.

Husain: “The UK says it can no longer make a distinction between the military and the political wing of Hizballah. Is it a false distinction to make?”

Saad: “I think it was an artificial one and it was a politically expedient one to facilitate dialogue and cooperation with Hizballah in Lebanon. In fact Hizballah is not a party with a military wing. It’s a resistance army and it has a political wing.”

Husain: “And that has meant fighting on the same side as President Assad in Syria and it’s been linked to the Houthi fighters backed by Iran in Yemen. One assumes that that is what the UK means when it says it’s destabilising the Middle East.”

The BBC’s domestic audiences then heard the claim that their own government’s policies are dictated by foreign interests.

Saad: “The British focused a lot on its role in Syria in the parliamentary report. The main argument was about Hizballah’s destabilising role in the region with emphasis on Syria. There was very little about actual terrorist incidents anywhere in the world. The UK is very troubled by Hizballah’s role in the region in the sense that it conflicts with US interests in the region. I think that’s the real problem.”
Rallies in Israel and around the world protest surge in antisemitism
Mass rallies were held both in Israel and around the world by the World Zionist Organization on Sunday in the wake of recent antisemitic events. The ralliers called governments in each of their respective countries to raise the issue of antisemitic incidents to the top of their priorities.

Rallies were held around the world, including in Jerusalem, Times Square in New York, the Great Synagogue Plaza in Paris, and many more.

"We stand here today in these different locations around the world to say enough," said Deputy Chairman of the World Zionist Organization and Head of the Struggle against Antisemitism Jacob Hagoel. "We are in a difficult and painful period that has deteriorated rapidly from the scrawling of caricatures and antisemitic graffiti, past the destruction of graves and reaching the point of physical harm to Jews in numerous countries."

"In the past, we could not do anything because we were a submissive, persecuted people," said Avraham Duvdevani, Chairman of the World Zionist Organization. "We have met here today to bring to the attention of the people living in Zion that antisemitism abroad is our problem and not just that of our brothers outside of Israel."

Chief Rabbi of Israel Rabbi David Lau explained that "I do not hate a man even if his face is different from mine, even if his opinions are different from mine, even if his origins are different from mine."
German clubs condemn antisemitic tweets about Israeli player
German police began an investigation into an antisemitic tweet sent to Israeli soccer player Almog Cohen after he got a red card during a Friday match between Ingolstadt and FC Union Berlin, the Local reported.

Union Berlin eventually won the match two to nil.

Cohen is the captain of Ingolstadt and has lived in Germany for nine years. He also plays for the Israeli national team.

The tweet was posted during the match and said Cohen should vanish into "the chamber," a reference to the gas chambers used by the Nazis in the Holocaust.

Both clubs immediately condemned the tweet with the hosting club, Union Berlin, filing an official complaint with the police.
Student removed from NJ school after anti-Semitic graffiti discovered
An 11th grader no longer attends a private school in New Jersey after anti-Semitic and racist graffiti was found in bathrooms on the school campus.

The hate graffiti were first discovered at the Dwight-Englewood Upper School on March 1. It was discovered again days later after a letter about the incident was sent to students, parents and staff of the school, and after an assembly program with the entire student body on Tuesday, the Daily Voice reported.

Englewood police investigated the graffiti as well. The student, who has not been identified, was removed from the school on Wednesday. The graffiti continues to be investigated as a bias crime, the Jewish Standard reported.

The school’s website says it is “the most ethnically-diverse school in Bergen County with students who represent over 80 communities in New Jersey and New York.”
Record number of anti-Semitic incidents recorded in Netherlands
The Netherlands saw a 19 percent increase in recorded anti-Semitic incidents in 2018 to a record 230 cases.

The Center for Information and Documentation (CIDI) recorded 135 real-life incidents — those that did not occur online — Dutch Jewry’s watchdog group said in its annual report published Monday. There were 113 real-life incidents reported in 2017.

However, violent incidents decreased to only one compared to five in 2017.

Incidents that occurred in the victim’s direct environment increased to 40 from 24.
Last Chabad yeshiva student to survive Holocaust via Shanghai dies at 100
Rabbi Avraham Tzvi Landa, the last Chabad yeshiva student to survive the Holocaust by escaping to Shanghai, has died.

Landa died in his sleep on February 15 at the age of 100.

He was granted a visa in 1940 by Japanese consul Chiune Sugihara and spent the remainder of World War II first in Kobe, and then in Shanghai. He was the last of the group of Polish Chabad yeshiva students to escape the Nazis.

Landa had written to Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn, the sixth Lubavitcher rebbe, for advice on how to get out of Vilnius, Poland, where he was in the Chabad yeshiva, and received a reply that assured him that God would grant him “… long, good and illuminating days and years, within the tent of Torah.”

Landau’s parents and all but one of his siblings were killed in the Holocaust.
In third-largest exit ever, Nvidia acquires Israel's Mellanox for $6.9 b.
American technology giant Nvidia will acquire Israeli chipmaker Mellanox in a deal worth $6.9 billion, the companies announced on Monday.

The Yokne’am-based company, founded in 1999 and listed on the Nasdaq Stock Market, supplies end-to-end interconnect solutions and services for many of the world’s largest data center servers and storage systems.

Nvidia’s purchase of the company, acquiring all issued and outstanding common shares for $125 per share in cash, puts an end to months of reported takeover attempts by some of the world’s biggest hi-tech firms, including Intel, Microsoft and Xilinx.

Together, Nvidia and Mellanox will power more than 250 of the world’s TOP500 most powerful supercomputers. The transaction has been approved by the boards of directors of both companies and is expected to close by the end of the calendar year.

The hefty $6.9 billion price tag, constituting a 14% premium on Mellanox’s closing share price on Friday, represents the third largest “exit” of an Israeli company to date, only surpassed by Intel’s $15.3 billion acquisition of Mobileye and International Flavors & Fragrances’ $7.1 billion acquisition of Frutarom.
Shmuley Boteach: The Story of Yechiel Eckstein: How Christians Went from Enemies to Friends
Many good people work to strengthen the Jewish people and the State of Israel. But few did more than my friend Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein, who died tragically and suddenly on February 6 at the age of 67.

Besides his many personal virtues, what made Yechiel stand out from the crowd was his commitment to work with Christians to raise tens of millions of dollars for Ethiopian Jews and other Jewish and Israeli causes.

Yechiel founded the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (IFCJ) in 1983, and devoted his life to building bridges of understanding and cooperation between Christians and Jews.

His organization raised an astounding $1.6 billion for Jews in Israel and more than 58 other countries. The organization now takes in more than $127 million annually from its nearly two million Christian donors.

Christians as friends of the Jews was never an easy sell. For 2,000 years, Christianity had identified the Jews as Satanic creatures who murdered god. True, Saint Augustine, the greatest of Church fathers, said they ought not to be murdered. But this was so they could remain perpetually in a subjugated state that demonstrated their rejection by God.
Larry King Joins Tefillin Campaign Launched in Honor of Rabbi Suffering From ALS
Jewish talk show icon Larry King donned tefillin late last week as he joined a campaign launched in honor of a rabbi suffering from ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

The campaign, launched for Chabad’s Rabbi Yitzi Hurwitz, seeks to have 15,000 adult men wear the Jewish prayer items in his honor.

In a video posted on Facebook, King is shown wearing his tefillin while telling Hurwitz “I know it’s a tough fight you’re in, but you’re a tough guy. I just said prayers for you. I wish you nothing but the best. A good and better and long life.”

Rabbi Hurwitz, a Chabad emissary to Temecula, Calif., has been suffering with ALS for six years and can only communicate through his eyes, according to

Last year, a group of Jewish students set out to get 4,600 men around the world to don tefillin in the rabbi’s honor as a gift for his 46th birthday. The campaign gained traction and resulted in an estimated 10,000 participants in 15 countries putting on phylacteries. Thousands of women also lit Shabbat candles that Friday in his honor.

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