Thursday, March 28, 2019

From Ian:

David Colier: The Israeli – Arab conflict in context – how you have never seen it before
There have probably been more words written about the Israeli -Arab conflict than any other post WW2 military dispute. I have no way to highlight this in a graph, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the words written about the Israeli – Arab conflict didn’t outweigh the words written about the largest ten or so of the global conflicts that have taken place in the same time period – combined. Too many words are written and the truth becomes lost in a tsunami of distortion. One death near Bethlehem yesterday became headline news about a teenage medic being killed, despite doubts about his innocence. The Guardian ran no such headlines about the lawmaker shot whilst on a peace-making pilgrimage in Sudan – a conflict that has taken 400,000 lives in just five years. Conflicts have different values, which is what this blog is about.

The conflict as a refugee crisis:
The Arab Israeli conflict created refugees. During the early civil and regional conflict of 1947-1949, many Arabs fled and some (especially those in openly hostile villages) were evicted. Some were offered rehousing inside Israel but still chose to leave (this puts paid to the ethnic cleansing accusation). After the conflict ended, some outside Israel were offered a return but refused (as it meant recognising Israel). Jewish communities also suffered throughout the region. Events in British Palestine were used as an excuse by rising national and Islamist ideologies. A trickle turned into a flood, the flood into a tsunami. Within a few short years the ancient Jewish Arab communities had been almost completely ethnically cleansed. Most of the Jewish refugees settled in Israel. These are the comparative numbers of refugees created by the Israeli/Arab conflict:

Arab Israeli conflict refugees
For the Arabs, I used the UNRWA figures even though these are without doubt exaggerated. It doesn’t matter – even when the Arab refugee numbers are artificially inflated, the conflict clearly created more Jewish refugees than Arab ones. This is what real ethnic cleansing looks like:

We’re Jews, We’re Not White, We Define Ourselves
Nearly a dozen studies published in the past decade show that Jews — Ashkenazi, Sephardi Mizrahi — are more biologically related to one another than they are to their local populations. In particular, a 2009 study found that Jewish populations share a high level of genetic similarity and a common Middle Eastern ancestry, and over their history they have undergone varying degrees of admixture with non-Jewish populations.

It’s time to refocus on our identity, not just because it will be good for us and our children to fully come to terms with who we are. We need to do this to firmly and definitively show that Jews are indigenous to Israel.

“It is part of a carefully managed agenda in the United States to not permit Jews to be part of the discussions about ‘people of color’ or racism,” Frantzman writes. And the goal of that agenda is to make the case that Israel is a European colonial enterprise, so that it can then be destroyed.

The bottom line: We can no longer let others define us. We need to start defining ourselves. And the only way to do that is through learning about our ancestry, our genetics and our indigenous connection to the land, culture and language of Israel.

“The designation of being a Hebrew probably meant something similar to ‘one who crossed over,’ ” Ergas told me. “The term captures the concept of language, history and experience of eternal otherness — and potentially points toward us always being in the process of transformation.”

We are the Hebrews, the Israelites, the Jews. We create, innovate and transform — ourselves and the world. This is who we are: eternally other; eternally lit.
PMW: PA Ministry of Education names sports event for girls after terrorist murderer who led killing of 37
One of the days marked fervently by the Palestinian Authority is the anniversary in March of the most lethal terror attack against Israel - the Coastal Road massacre in which Palestinian terrorists murdered 37 civilians, among them 12 children. The attack was led by female terrorist Dalal Mughrabi who the PA since has turned into a role model and hero for Palestinian children and society in general.

To celebrate the anniversary this year, the PA Ministry of Education arranged a sports festival for girls named after the terrorist:
"The Dalal Mughrabi Sports Festival"

The sports festival was held at the Beitunia Upper Elementary School for Girls and participating girls wore shirts featuring the image of the murderer and the text "Dalal Mughrabi Festival":

[Facebook page of the Beitunia Upper Elementary School for Girls, March 13, 2019]
PA officials were also present at the festival honoring murderer Mughrabi, among them Bassem Erekat, director of the district's Education Directorate , which is a branch of the PA Ministry of Education, and Ribhi Dawla, mayor of Beitunia, where the festival was held. In addition, the District Governor of Ramallah and El-Bireh Dr. Laila Ghannam spoke at the event, stating that Palestinian children "are determined to continue on the path." Ghannam also praised Palestinian women for having "brought children into the world, fought, and built glory that will not be erased" - indicating that murderer Mughrabi had created lasting "glory" with her attack killing 37:

Finally, a Resolution That Actually Condemns Anti-Semitism
Earlier this month, after Rep. Ilhan Omar accused American Jews of dual loyalty and the Israel lobby of purchasing undue influence, the House passed a resolution that did not mention Omar by name and that condemned not only anti-Semitism but every other conceivable form of bigotry. Doing his best to hide his disappointment, Rep. Eliot Engel, who chairs the Foreign Affairs Committee, said, “I wish we had had a separate resolution about anti-Semitism. I think we deserved it.”

The congressman can take heart: A new resolution, drafted by Ted Cruz and slated to be introduced in the Senate this week, delivers everything that the Democrats’ muddled manifesto did not. “Anti-Semitism,” it declares in its very first sentence, “is a unique form of prejudice.” It’s precisely the sort of statement—factually true and morally clear—that so many American Jews hoped to hear after Omar made her inflammatory comments, and had the new resolution said nothing more it still would’ve been enough. But in four brief paragraphs, Cruz’s initiative delivers not only a much-needed course correction but also an education on the specific historical evils of anti-Semitism and an elucidation of the real key differences between both political parties when it comes to understanding and honoring the concerns of American Jews. For these reasons, it merits a close reading.

The resolution begins, as all serious documents must, by providing historical context. Anti-Semitism, it reminds us, is not, as the Democrats’ resolution argued, narrowly an obsession of white supremacists—and as such only one small part of a worldview that disdains “African Americans, Latinos, Native Americans, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and other people of color, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs, the LGBTQ community, immigrants, and others.” Anti-Semitism is instead an unparalleled conspiracy theory that dates back more than 2,000 years and that, when left unchecked, has paved direct paths to extermination.
WATCH: Ben Shapiro Speaks With Ted Cruz About His Anti-Semitism Resolution
The Daily Wire Editor-in-Chief Ben Shapiro spoke with Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) about his recent proposal to openly and specifically condemn anti-Semitism following the disastrous watered-down resolution presented by the Democrats in the House of Representative. Cruz also discusses the Trump Administration's stance on the Golan Heights, Beto O'Rourke's 2020 campaign, as well as the Democrats and AIPAC. Video and partial transcript below.

Ben: What's the actual contents of the bill?

Sen.Ted Cruz: Well I hope that it comes up for a vote. We circulated it to every Senate office this past week. It's a straightforward bill condemning anti-Semitism. And this was prompted number one by the repeated anti-Semitic comments we've seen from these new freshman congresswomen. But number two, by the ridiculous paroxysms, that House Democrats went into when they were unable to vote out a resolution condemning anti-Semitism because the sad reality is too many in their party have given into the extremes, the left-wing anti-Israel bias, the embrace of BDS. And so instead they watered it down into a general resolution disclaiming bigotry of any kind and they listed every group they could find in it. The resolution, I've introduced is straightforward. It defines anti-Semitism as a unique form of prejudice that's targeted at the Jews. It identifies attacks on Jewish loyalty as a form of anti-Semitism with a long history though in going all the way back to the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. It identifies attacks on Jews' livelihood as a form of anti-Semitism from land prohibition in the Middle Ages to Nazi destruction of Jewish businesses to the contemporary BDS movement. And it describes the history of American anti-Semitism. It's one of the reasons why it is so clear to be unequivocal. My hope is the Senate will do what the House was not able to do. Just take it up and clearly and unequivocally condemn anti-Semitism.
Progressives Hate Israel Because It’s the Jewish State, Not Because of Netanyahu
Of course much of the political left, including within the Democratic Party, does not share these views about Israel. Both House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D., Md.) made powerful speeches to the AIPAC conference in which they denounced hatred of Israel and anti-Semitism. Indeed, the Democratic leadership and much of their constituency support Israel; they may disagree on issues like Israeli settlements in the West Bank, for example, but they do not fundamentally oppose the Zionist project.

But the likes of Pelosi and Hoyer have a problem: how can they, and the rest of the Democratic leadership, manage a progressive movement in their party's ranks that hates Israel for being Israel, for being the Jewish state? Left, right, center, Netanyahu in office, no Netanyahu in office—it does not matter; progressives will feel the same way and pursue the same agenda.

It is an open question, but one should not be optimistic. The loudest voices in the Democratic Party are now progressives, and the party's base and energies belong to the progressive movement. That is why Pelosi and Hoyer caved on condemning Omar's anti-Semitic remarks, instead allowing some bogus resolution to pass in the House that obfuscates to the point of rendering it meaningless. Going forward, more sober-minded Democrats will struggle mightily to control a broader movement whose illogical hostility to Israel reeks of anti-Semitism.

In short order, the Democratic Party may resemble the United Kingdom's Labour Party, which has lost its soul and any legitimate claim to seeking social justice after it institutionalized anti-Semitism under the leadership of Jeremy Corbyn. And the American left will soon no longer be able to put all of the blame on Netanyahu's government. The charade is obviously false now to those who are paying attention, and sooner or later, it will became evident to the rest of the American people.
J Street Gaslights Americans About The Threat Of Anti-Semitism
The real reason behind J Street’s kabuki dance should be of serious concern to all Americans. The effort to rejoin the disastrous Iran nuclear deal is picking up steam in the Democratic Party ahead of 2020. The Democratic National Committee last month passed a resolution calling on the United States to re-enter the deal. Right on cue, J Street joined a statement signaling their intent to shill for the Iran deal — again.

In the lead-up to the first Iran deal, key cogs of the Obama Administration admitted that they created a covert "echo chamber" made up of left-wing media and Soros-linked groups — all funded by Ploughshares Fund. The largest beneficiary of funds to manufacture consent for the Iran deal was J Street, who raked in $576,000. The group leaned heavily on their "Jewish" status, using rabbis to sell the American public on the "virtue" of a nuclear Iran. J Street’s "kashering" of the Iran deal for senators like Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Chuck Schumer (D-NY) partially inoculated them against backlash from the Jewish voting bloc within the Democratic Party. Then J Street was able to besmirch Israel’s defenders because anyone arguing in the presence of a purportedly "Jewish" group — complete with a confab of rabbis — is an idiot, or a racist.

After seeing the liberal establishment pull the alarm over an increasingly hostile climate for Jews, it is easy to understand why J Street is panicking. Soon after Omar’s latest smear, even the Anti-Defamation League, historically relied upon to defang incidents of left-wing anti-Semitism, came out swinging in a statement of condemnation. Even Democrat standard-bearer Nancy Pelosi had to admit that demonizing Israel and championing anti-Zionist causes like BDS are anti-Semitic.

As the security risk posed by anti-Semitism becomes more visceral for Americans, expect to see Jeremy Ben-Ami and J Street operatives become more strident, for they know that selling the Iran nuclear deal the second time around will be a heavy lift while Tehran advocates for "wiping Israel off the political map."
Leftist Organization Claims False Victory For Dem Candidates Not Attending AIPAC. Here’s The Real Reason.
Last week, the leftist organization MoveOn declared victory over several Democratic presidential candidates as they did not attend the American Israel Public Affairs Committee's annual bipartisan Policy Conference. But the truth is more prosaic; many of the candidates were simply not invited or had scheduling conflicts.

The process started on March 20, when MoveOn, a prominent progressive pressure group, demanded that the Democratic presidential hopefuls boycott the 2019 AIPAC Policy Conference, citing that 74.3% of their members believed the candidates should skip the event.

“MoveOn is calling on 2020 presidential candidates to not attend the AIPAC conference,” the group tweeted in a thread citing four reasons for doing so, including AIPAC’s opposition to the Iran nuclear deal, supposedly peddling “anti-Muslim and anti-Arab rhetoric while giving platforms to those involved in human rights abuses,” allowing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to headline the event, and refusing “to condemn the anti-Semitism of Republicans.”

On March 22, MoveOn declared victory on its website.

“After MoveOn members asked candidates to skip the AIPAC conference, no 2020 Democratic presidential candidates are yet publicly committed to attend the AIPAC conference in DC this weekend!” the group wrote, listing seven candidates who were reported to be skipping the conference, including Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA), Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), former Rep. Beto O’Rourke, San Antonio, Texas Mayor Julián Castro, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, and South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg.

But in reality, AIPAC has a policy of not inviting presidential candidates in non-election years, The Washington Post reported.
Omar Falsifies Record to Attack AIPAC
First, Omar claimed AIPAC and Netanyahu "vigorously opposed" the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement. This is true. AIPAC and Israel's government strongly opposed the deal. So did a sprawling list of American Jewish organizations.

It is Iran, not Israel, AIPAC, or the United States, that threatened peace with its nuclear program.

Iran agreed to temporarily cease developing weapons of mass destruction only in exchange for sanctions relief and pallets of cash. Iran flagrantly violates human rights. Iran tests ballistic missiles, in violation of United Nations resolutions. Omar has one tweet agreeing in principle that Iranians can protest their government.

In her thread, Omar also said we cannot turn "a blind eye" to any "form of hate." Omar has visited Turkey and has met with Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who jails journalists and severely limits public protest. Omar has one positive tweet about the Turkish government and one highlighting her meeting with Erdogan. No tweet addresses human rights violations in Turkey.

Omar also claimed that "AIPAC and Netanyahu openly opposed the Oslo Accords— and the 1993 peace process." AIPAC supported the 1993 Oslo Accords, and continues to say the same on its own website.
Ilhan Omar Should Start Helping Palestinians
Senior Omar aide's Twitter rantings: antisemitism is right-wing force
The millions of hours and dollars devoted to the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel over the past decade have done zilch to help the Palestinians. If anything, it has hurt them by perpetuating a state of chronic victimhood.

It’s the general view across the ideological spectrum that neither the Palestinians nor the Israelis are ready and able right now to “end the occupation,” regardless of who’s in power on either side. This should not be used as an excuse not to help Palestinians and promote real, concrete programs that will help the Palestinian economy and improve living conditions.

But by focusing so single-mindedly on Israel and the Jews—whether it’s the “lobby power” in the U.S. or the “Israel power” in the Middle East—people like Omar do nothing to help Palestinians. Shame on them.

It’s time we call them out. Anti-Semitic attacks have failed the Arab world. The BDS movement has failed the Palestinians.

There’s nothing wrong, of course, with vigorous criticism of Israeli policies, but, as history has shown, when it’s all you do, you do nothing to advance the welfare of your people.

If Ilhan Omar is serious about helping the oppressed Arab and Muslim victims of the Middle East, including in her country of Somalia, she’s got plenty of non-Jewish targets to go after. If she’s serious about helping Palestinians, in addition to criticizing Israel, she can go after the corrupt regimes in Ramallah and Gaza who keep failing their people.
Senior Omar aide's Twitter rantings: antisemitism is right-wing force
This time it’s not Rep. Ilhan Omar who got herself in trouble for antisemitic rantings, but one of her senior aides.

On Wednesday, Omar’s senior communications director and strategist, Jeremy Slevin, reacted to a tweet by Omar, which was directed at Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Omar wrote, “To confront hate and bigotry in all its forms, we must understand that they are all related. We cannot call out one form of hate while turning a blind eye to another.”

Slevin’s remarks were met a flurry of comments, including some by Tablet magazine writer Yair Rosenberg, who has been covering antisemitism for a number of years for the Jewish press. Rosenberg informed Slevin that antisemitism is “not a Muslim problem, a Christian problem, a left problem or a right problem. It is a human problem.”

Writer and political consultant Emily Schrader commented, “So how does it feel to be on the same side as both David Duke and Louis Farrakhan?”

In the thread it did come out that Slevin himself is Jewish. He wrote, “I am Jewish and my family also fled Russia. I am well aware of Soviet persecution.”
New Study Claims That the UK Labour Party Is Institutionally Antisemitic
British scholar Alan Johnson has published a 135-page report that concludes that the UK Labour Party is institutionally antisemitic. Its title indicates this: Institutionally Antisemitic: Contemporary Left Antisemitism and the Crisis in the British Labour Party.

Johnson himself is a member of Labour. He explains that three types of antisemitism are present in the party. The first is the “socialism of fools.” This means seeing capitalism, globalization, or banks as in some way “Jewish.” He writes: “When you hear talk of ‘Rothschild capitalism’ you know you are listening to the socialism of fools.”

Johnson adds: “The second [type of antisemitism] is ‘classical racial antisemitism,’ sometimes but not always informed these days by Islamist ideas about Jews.” The third variety he mentions is “antisemitism dressed up as ‘anti-Zionism.’”

Johnson’s main arguments about why antisemitism is institutional are damning for the party because of the many examples he gives to back up his claims. These include that the Labour Party is failing to safeguard its Jewish members. It also fails to understand and empathize with the Jewish experience. It does not effectively deal with antisemitism, but rather makes overly tolerant decisions in regard to individual cases. Furthermore, the party fails to educate members about antisemitism. Beyond that, Johnson states that Labour has failed to end the party’s culture of antisemitism denial and victim blaming.
Police make three arrests over secret internal Labour Party antisemitic hate dossier following report by CAA
The Metropolitan Police Service has made three arrests over a secret internal dossier of Labour Party antisemitism, which was reported by Campaign Against Antisemitism to Commissioner Cressida Dick live on LBC radio.

Two men in their 50s were arrested as well as a woman in her 70s, all on suspicion of incitement to racial hatred, which is a very serious criminal offence.

The three are understood to have been expelled from the Labour Party after the Party learned on LBC that its secret dossier had been reported to the police by CAA live on air.

The dossier contains over eighty pages of antisemitic hatred by Labour Party members, including Holocaust denial and threats to harm Jewish Labour MPs. Some of the perpetrators admitted to the Party that they were behind some of the hatred chronicled in the dossier, which is just one of many dossiers compiled by the Party’s internal Compliance Unit for consideration by the Party’s Disputes Panel. The panel is currently chaired by Claudia Webb, who defended Ken Livingstone and claimed that the “combined machinery of state, political and mainstream elite” are conspiring to smear Jeremy Corbyn with “false allegations”.

The secret dossier is believed to be just one of several compiled by the Labour Party’s Compliance Unit, though all but one of the original researchers in the unit have now left, with at least one of them publicly voicing their disgust at attitudes towards antisemitism.
Diane Abbott Launched Report by Notorious Conspiracist who Defended Ken Livingstone's Zionist Hitler Theories
Labour’s Diane Abbott and Lloyd Russell-Moyle were busy on Tuesday night speaking at the launch of a new report from ‘Spinwatch’ in Parliament. Spinwatch is one of the many projects of Bristol University Professor David Miller, a prolific conspiracy theorist who recently condemned Ken Livingstone’s treatment by the Labour Party as “absurd” and a “disgrace”, said there was nothing “historically inaccurate” about Livingstone’s comments about Hitler and Zionism and dismissed the fears of Jewish students on campus as “propaganda”. Miller himself was suspended from the Labour Party over anti-Semitism before being swiftly reinstated…

Miller has a range of different Wikipedia-style ‘watch’-sites profiling tens of thousands of people supposedly involved in “corporate capture, political spin and lies”, including Powerbase and the now defunct SpinProfiles. Miller’s websites seem to take a particular interest in the racial origins of people they profile. If they happen to be Jewish…

One of Miller’s other sites, Neocon Europe, published extensive writings from notoriously racist academic Kevin MacDonald, presented as an impartial analysis of “Jewish influence”. Spinwatch itself is funded by Islamist-linked organisations including MEND, Interpal and the Cordoba Foundation, which David Cameron described as a front for the Muslim Brotherhood. What on earth is the Shadow Home Secretary doing associating with an organisation like this?
Consequences Of Anti-Semitism: University Of Texas Faculty No Longer Able To Use Airbnb On School Business
In response to Airbnb's corporate anti-Semitism, Texas, under the leadership of Gov. Greg Abbott — a longtime staunch friend of Israel's — implemented a boycott of Airbnb for all state employees. As the Austin American-Statesman reported two weeks ago, "The Texas comptroller quietly this month named the online home rental giant among companies it says boycott Israel and thus will be boycotted back by Texas."

Now, according to The Texas Tribune, some University of Texas-Austin faculty and students are feeling the ramifications of Texas's decision. As the Tribune notes, the Texas comptroller's listing — all but assuredly flowing downstream from Abbott's pro-Israel leadership — triggers a 2017 state statute that prevents Texas state agencies from contracting with companies that boycott Israel:

UT-Austin employees, including professors and graduate students, received notice Tuesday that they can’t use state money to stay in Airbnbs. The message comes just weeks after Texas blacklisted Airbnb for its alleged boycotting of Israel after the company removed its listings in the West Bank. Airbnb says it does not boycott Israel.

"Any future reservations will need to be cancelled and reservations will need to be made with another lodging establishment," said an email one UT department sent to students.

Airbnb was blacklisted because of a 2017 law, House Bill 89, which says state agencies cannot contract with companies that boycott Israel.

Actions, as it is once again shown, do indeed have consequences.
Right-Wing Student Group at Arizona State University Apologizes Amid Controversy Over Antisemitic, Racist, Homophobic Comments
A right-wing group at Arizona State University has apologized after its co-founders were found last week to have made antisemitic, racist, homophobic and other offensive comments.

The College Republicans United, which was established last year as an unaffiliated offshoot of ASU’s College Republicans chapter, came under scrutiny after the Phoenix New Times published photos and comments shared by co-founders Richard Thomas and Kevin Decuyper, the latter of whom has since graduated.

The dossier, complied by a former club member, included a photo showing Thomas, an ASU senior, holding a tiki torch and a galleon of milk while posing near a white Dodge Challenger. Tiki torches were carried at the 2017 Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, where white supremacists chanted, “Jews will not replace us.” A counter-protester, Heather Heyer, was killed by a white supremacist driving a Dodge Challenger. White supremacists have tried to use milk to highlight their supposed genetic supremacy, by falsely arguing that white people are the only ones who can properly digest lactose as adults.
Berlin bans convicted Palestinian terrorist from taking part in rallies
Authorities in Berlin say they have banned a Palestinian activist from taking part in a political rally in the German capital.

State officials said Wednesday that Rasmea Odeh is forbidden from participating in the planned event by a group called the Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network.

Odeh was convicted in 1970 of two bombings in Jerusalem, including one that killed two men at a supermarket. Odeh claimed she was tortured into confessing by the Israeli military. She was deported from the U.S. to Jordan in 2017 for having lied about her conviction.

Odeh was sentenced to life in prison in Israel but released in 1979 as part of a prisoner swap with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.

Berlin authorities say the ban lasts until Odeh leaves Germany. A visa allowing her to travel freely in Europe's 26-nation Schengen area has already been canceled.

Part 1: UNC-Duke Conference on Gaza Whitewashes Hamas, Blasts Israel
On Saturday March 23, I attended UNC-Chapel Hill’s (UNC-CH) “Conflict Over Gaza,” which I had hoped might possibly be constructive but in reality, was an anti-Israel hate-fest. The three-day conference was sponsored by UNC’s Center for Middle East and Islamic Studies and the Duke-UNC Consortium for Middle East Studies. As reported in the Tower, the opening reception and the opening remarks, as well as the full-day “academic sessions,” were all held on Shabbat, thus preventing observant members of the Jewish community from attending.

At 8am, an hour before the conference was to begin, there was already a large, peaceful group of protestors holding signs such as “Free Gaza from Hamas,” “UNC Indoctrination Education Center” and “Gaza Elected a Terrorist Government.” Protestors handed out copies of the previous day’s New York Times column on how Hamas terrorizes and brutalizes the Palestinian people, the people it rules.

The large lobby area served as the central gathering place with vendor tables and catered snacks. It featured a large screen that played a photo collage on repeat, celebrating and glorifying Palestinian terrorism against Israel. Conference attendees continually saw photographs of Palestinians attacking Israel with incendiary devices, such as fire kites. Photographs of other forms of Palestinian terror – such as rockets and mortars being launched at Israel, terror tunnels, and suicide killers – were deliberately omitted from the collage.

The myth being sold here is that Palestinians fight with just kites and fire. Nowhere were there photographs of Israeli children hiding and crying in shelters as rockets from Gaza exploded around them.
Part 2: UNC-Duke Conference on Gaza Whitewashes Hamas, Blasts Israel
Almadhoun was asked, “Over the years, the Hamas government of Gaza has received billions of dollars in humanitarian aid that instead has been diverted to terror tunnels, rockets, bombs, guns, etc. If that aid is instead prioritized and given for humanitarian aid, do you think that would help the situation? If so, what can you do about it? If no, why not?”

Almadhoun mocked the questioner by saying, “Thank you for your genuine concern for the Palestinian people…I appreciate that.” Almadhoun’s response caused many in the audience to laugh at the questioner. Until that moment, I had never seen a presenter at an academic conference make fun of an audience member.

While admitting that Palestinian corruption exists, Almadhoun concluded his answer by saying, “Israelis are always interested in blaming the Palestinians for their own misery, and that’s a nice copout if it makes you sleep better at night. But you know, the facts disagree with you.”

Almadhoun took the time to mock the questioner and to tell this audience member that the facts go against him but did not feel the need to explain what “facts” he was talking about. This Israel-bashing conference had clearly turned into an event in which audience members who support Israel were being treated poorly and differently than everyone else. Many would call that discrimination.

At this moment, much about the conference became crystal clear. UNC and Duke were jointly holding a conference aimed at demonizing and delegitimizing Israel and holding Israel to double standards because doing so is safe. Israel doesn’t kill you for disagreeing.
Palestinian Terrorist Organizations at a US University
Palestinian activism on the campus of the University of Hawaii at Manoa (UH) has existed for many years and is similar to what is found on many campuses in the academic community. This is evident when reading Cynthia Franklin’s bio page on the university’s website.

Cynthia Franklin, PhD, is a faculty member of the Department of English. She is on the Steering Committee for the Organizing Collective of USACBI, the US Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel. She founded UH Faculty and Students for Justice in Palestine, and co-founded the Hawaii Coalition for Justice in Palestine (HCJP) and Jewish Voice for Peace-Hawaii.

It is the advocacy at the UH that is concerning, advocacy that suggests a nexus with Palestinian terror organizations.
An activist is a person who acts to bring about social or political change. An advocate is a person who speaks on behalf of another person or group, pleads the cause of another. It is the advocacy at the UH that is concerning, advocacy that suggests a nexus with Palestinian terror organizations.

An internet search reveals the tools that are essential for a successful advocacy campaign. They are: Website, Social Media, Events, Electronic Media.

The electronic media platform provides a large far reaching audience for an advocacy campaign, the message is broadcast quickly and the message can contain all the detail necessary to win over an audience.

Social media, Facebook, as an advocacy tool, allows for the advertising of upcoming events and the mobilization of supporters.
Jewish Council Warns Against Antisemitism at Scottish Universities
A representative body of Scottish Jewish communities has warned of concerning levels of antisemitism faced by Jewish students and teachers at Scottish universities.

In a submission to the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC), which is investigating racial harassment at publicly-funded universities and colleges, the Scottish Council of Jewish Communities (SCoJec) recounted the case of a female medical student who was “hounded for taking off Jewish holidays, and refusing to sit exams on Friday evening,” The Sunday Times reported. The Jewish Sabbath begins at sundown on Fridays.

The student said she was “repeatedly summoned for dressing-down from professors, the dean, and the head of the school,” and was told by the dean that “because this is a secular university, we don’t need to take any account of students’ religion.”

According to the SCoJec, a professor who was on an admissions committee said the student was “not doing your people any favours as we’ll think twice about taking anyone with a Jewish name in future.”

The report cited the case of another student who claimed to have faced repeated antisemitic harassment from her peers online and in person. The students told the SCoJec that she avoided the business school and library, and was worried about attending a workshop “due to fear of being harassed or attacked.”

The report claimed that such “aggressive demonstrations or abusive rhetoric” also extended to “some academic and research staff.”

BBC R4 newsreader refers to a state the BBC knows does not exist
Following a recording of Netanyahu speaking at that ceremony, Soanes went on:

Soanes: “Mr Netanyahu cut short his visit to Washington because of escalating violence between Israel and Palestine. Israel launched airstrikes across the Gaza Strip in retaliation for a long-range rocket attack which injured 7 people near Tel Aviv. The targets included the office of the Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh. Hamas says a ceasefire has been agreed but there’s been no confirmation from Israel.”

There is of course no point in having a style guide if journalists, presenters and producers – particularly it would seem at BBC Radio 4 – ignore its guidance. Given that the style guide correctly states “there is no independent state of Palestine today”, there is obviously no reason whatsoever for BBC staff to be promoting the inaccurate impression that such a state exists – and even more so when they are in fact referring to a terror organisation that violently seized power from the representatives of the Palestinians recognised by the international community.
Pundits Too Stupid To Know Temple Mount, Not Western Wall, Judaism’s Holiest Site Still Considered Experts(satire)
Commentators and journalists who lack the basic knowledge that the location of both ancient Temples marks the most sacred spot on Earth to Jews, and not a portion of the retaining wall around the plateau on which it stood, somehow maintain their status as knowledgeable media sources on the matter.

No negative consequences to the credibility or to the number of appearances in media have accrued to the numerous reporters, pundits, interviewees, or panelists who, time and time again, mention the Western Wall in Jerusalem as Judaism’s holiest site, when in fact even young Jewish schoolchildren, Wikipedia, or a cursory Google search could inform them the Temple Mount holds that distinction.

Media watchdogs focused on coverage of Israel and Jews note that a full 30% of the corrections they demand from news sources relate to the centrality of the Temple Mount to Judaism. “We’d have a lot less work if reporters and so-called ‘experts’ knew what the hell they were talking about,” lamented Hugh-Kent B. Siryes of UK Media Watch. “Unfortunately, what passes for knowledgeability in today’s press falls far short of what people expect and deserve.”

Siryes cited the related phenomenon of journalists describing Jerusalem as “holy to three religions” without noting that the importance of the city to Christianity and to Islam derives directly from its centrality to Judaism, a status it attained many centuries before the appearance of either Christianity or Islam. “It’s as if many, if not most, of these experts assume history began in 1948 or 1967, and display no curiosity as to what might have happened in the thousands of years before then.”
US State Department Issues Tender to Fight Antisemitism Around the World
The US State Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor issued a $2 million tender for two projects to combat antisemitism in Europe and Central Asia.

According to the announcement, the projects will be run in member countries of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, in cooperation with the Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism, to combat “acts of physical violence, desecration of religious sites, religion-based discrimination, and the use of hateful or inflammatory speech in public discourse, traditional media and online.”

The State Department bureau “will support one or more projects to counter antisemitism by increasing documentation and reporting on hate crimes, promoting greater societal inclusion and increasing public awareness of ways to combat hateful and discriminatory expression targeting Jews. Efforts to increase reporting should also include training law enforcement to adequately and holistically respond to hate crimes from a legal, social and community perspective; and to better equip police and prosecutors to engage effectively with local Jewish populations,” according to the announcement.
New Jersey Imam: IDF Chief Rabbi Called to Rape Palestinian Women to Boost Soldier Morale
In a February 22, 2019 Friday sermon at the Islamic Center of Passaic County in Paterson, New Jersey, Imam Baker Assaf warned his followers not to joke about Hitler “not finishing the job,” and said that hate should be directed toward the "theology and practice" that is Zionism rather than the Jewish religion. Imam Assaf said that the IDF Chief Rabbi had issued a religious verdict instructing soldiers to rape Palestinian women to boost morale and that a chief rabbi at Ben Gurion University had made statements to the same effect. Imam Assaf said that the few Muslims – no more than “a portion of a fraction” – who carry out terrorist attacks may be “psychologically messed up” because of some trauma, such as witnessing their sister being gang-raped. He further said that while homosexuality would never be accepted in Islam, "we are not kicking anybody off the Empire State Building," since Muslims are living in a non-Muslim country that does not follow shari'a law. The sermon was streamed live on ICPC Pateron's YouTube channel. Baker Assaf teaches classes regularly at the Muslim Student Association of New Jersey Institute of Technology, and he served as the president of the NJ chapter of the AlMaghrib Institute.

German band Rammstein blasted for concentration camp video
German hard rock band Rammstein sparked protests from politicians, historians and Jewish groups Thursday with a video showing band members dressed as concentration camp prisoners with nooses around their necks.

Critics accused the Berlin-based group of a cynical publicity stunt playing with Nazi-era imagery to generate media hype and online clicks for their new single.

No strangers to controversy, the band has long employed dark militaristic imagery and in a 1998 video used footage from Leni Riefenstahl’s 1936 Nazi propaganda film “Olympia.”

“With this new video, the band has crossed a line,” said Charlotte Knobloch, ex-president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany.

“The instrumentalization and trivialization of the Holocaust shown in the images are irresponsible,” she told Bild daily.
German Jewish community leader Charlotte Knobloch, seen in Jerusalem in 2009. (Wikimedia Commons)

“Rammstein is misusing the suffering and murder of millions for entertainment purposes in a frivolous and repulsive way.”
Discovery Channel Documentary Honoring Holocaust Remembrance Day to Feature Thousands of Survivor, Witness Testimonies
To mark Holocaust Remembrance Day, the Discovery Channel will air a documentary on May 1 that highlights 55,000 testimonies of survivors and witnesses to genocidal events, including the Holocaust.

The collection of testimonies that will be featured in “Liberation Heroes: The Last Eyewitnesses” are part of the USC Shoah Foundation’s Visual History Archive, which is part of the organization director Steven Spielberg founded after filming “Schindler’s List,” according to Deadline. The one-hour documentary is part of the foundation’s 25th anniversary celebration as well as its Stronger Than Hate Initiative.

The project is a “call to action to stand against hate in all forms,” said Discovery CEO David Zaslav. “These stories remind us of what can happen when religious, racial and ethnic hatred is unbridled.”

Andy Friendly, the documentary’s producer, described the film as “a remembrance of the eyewitnesses to one of mankind’s darkest moments” and also “their enduring final plea…to never stand idly by.”

He added, “In the face of the dramatic rise of intolerance around the world, this message is more relevant than ever.”
Tel Aviv hosts largest LGBTQ sports event in the Middle East
This weekend, Tel Aviv is playing host to 1,250 athletes and hundreds of spectators from around the world participating in the largest LGBTQ sports event in the Middle East. The Tel Aviv Games is the second LGBTQ multi-sports tournament hosted by the Tel Aviv LGBTQ Sports Club and the Tel Aviv-Jaffa Municipality.

Athletes from 17 countries, including teams from France, the UK, Germany, Greece, The Netherlands, Spain, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Norway, Suriname, Australia, the United States, Canada and Russia will compete in seven different sporting competitions over the course a three-day celebration of participation and inclusion.

Athletes will take part in various swimming, soccer, basketball, volleyball, same-sex dance, tennis and a running competition.

“The Tel Aviv-Jaffa Municipality and the Tel Aviv LGBTQ Center are proud to support The Tel Aviv Games for the second time,” said Itai Pinkas, the Tel Aviv-Jaffa Municipal Council Member in charge of LGBT affairs. “Along with additional achievements of the LGBTQ community in Tel Aviv, we are proud partners of the Tel Aviv LGBTQ Sports Club and are looking forward to host hundreds of athletes from abroad.”
A hollow victory: Israel claims title of world’s largest salt cave from Iran
Israel snatched the title of world’s longest salt cave from Iran after a group of 80 international spelunkers hailing from nine countries successfully mapped the Malcham cave in the southern Dead Sea Region.

The cave, which wends its way underneath the 11 kilometer (7 mile)-long massive block of salt known as Mount Sodom, clocks in at over 10 kilometers (6.2 miles). Iran’s 3N Cave, which previously held the title for world’s largest salt cave, is about 6.5 kilometers (4 miles).

Professor Amos Frumkin, the director of Hebrew University’s Cave Research Center, first discovered the Malcham Cave in the 1980s. Using rudimentary methods to map the length of the cave, including unspooling string behind the cavers, they estimated the Malcham cave was around five kilometers long.

In 2006, a group of European and Iranian cavers announced that they had successfully mapped Iran’s 3N Cave, which stretched for 6.5 kilometers, bringing the salt cave crown to the Iranians. 3N stands for “Three Nudes” or “Cave of Three Naked Men” though cavers can only guess where the name comes from.

“The fact that we broke the Iranian record is not a political thing,” said Yoav Negev, the chairman of the Israel Cave Explorers Club. “We know this area is unexplored, and we want to explore it. The fact that we broke the record is only for the headline. We don’t want it to impact our relationship with Iranian cavers. We see it as good motivation for both countries.”
Over a thousand Israelis attend funeral for American lone soldier
Over 1,000 people attended the funeral of an American lone soldier in the Israel Defense Forces on Thursday, hours after a call went out on social media urging those who could to make it.

Alex Sasaki, 27, of Laguna Beach, California, was found dead earlier this week from a drug overdose, an official from the Keep Olim NGO who knew him told The Times of Israel.

His funeral was held at the Mount Herzl military cemetery in Jerusalem.

Sasaki studied at the University of Oregon before moving to Israel and enlisting in the army as a combat soldier. He joined the military at the end of 2017 and joined the elite Golani unit a year ago.

“He called me on my birthday… to say that he got Golani. He was so excited. He tried so hard to get in. It took him 16 months after making aliyah,” his mother, Shelly, said during her eulogy.

“He didn’t complain once. Never about how cold it was. He was on the border in the north and never complained that he was cold and lonely. Ever,” she said.

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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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