Monday, October 28, 2019

From Ian:

Jewish Unity Required to Combat Anti-Semitism
A neo-Nazi gunman's attack in Halle, Germany, on Yom Kippur, the Jewish people's holiest day, made the mounting security threat we face that much clearer. For American Jews, the wake-up call came exactly one year ago in Pittsburgh, when the worst anti-Semitic attack in U.S. history struck the Tree of Life building housing three synagogues. Six months later, another synagogue attack occurred in Poway, California, on the final day of Passover.

The physical attacks are unmistakable signs of a long-brewing worldwide epidemic of anti-Semitism. Each day brings another harrowing headline. From cyber abuse to street insults, to vandalism of synagogues and cemeteries, to intimidation and threats in public, Jews around the world are living in a constant state of fear due to the simple fact that they are Jews.

Anti-Semites do not discriminate when it comes to their victims. Those looking to harm us could care less whether we wear a kippah or to which synagogue we belong, if at all. In the face of this shared threat, the Jewish people must stand united in purpose and action.

Protecting Jewish life from hatred and bigotry is a central component of the Jewish Agency's DNA. We are combating this surge in anti-Semitism by working closely with leaders across the globe to coordinate combating hate crimes against Jews, investing in education for tolerance and understanding, and increasing security for Jewish communities in need.

Ultimately, counteracting this scourge of hate goes far beyond bolstered security. It starts within our own hearts and minds, through an uncompromised commitment to Jewish unity.
The BDS mindset is a challenge to liberal democracy here, as well as in Israel. Centrists must defend a precious inheritance.
It is all too easy to dismiss the movement boycott, divest from, and sanction Israel (BDS) as insignificant—having sway only among academic radicals, student activists, and the extremist fringes of the Democratic party. But to do so would be a serious mistake, writes William Kolbrener:

[T]he ideas that inform BDS, and which have influenced parts of the Democratic Party, are part of an ideological status quo at humanities departments across the United States. Specifically, the creed of “intersectionality” positions Zionism and Israel as beyond the postmodern pale: the embodiment of fundamentalist religion, ultra-nationalist politics, and militarism. . . .

Like Satan in John Milton’s great epic Paradise Lost, in order to win BDS must merely create a moral equivalence between the heavenly and satanic angels. BDS does not need . . . to bring centrist liberals to their Devil’s party. Just suggesting a moral equivalence between Israel and its adversaries is enough to persuade life-long liberals to entertain the devil’s fictions: that, for example, the seventeen-year-old girl who was killed last month after swimming with her brother and father “was a settler, after all.” . . .

Those in the BDS movement, and especially their radical Islamist allies, understand the ideological exhaustion of liberals. They cultivate the growing, if still somewhat suppressed, notion among them that the institutions of democracy are irrevocably tainted by colonialism, racism, and sexism.
UK Lawyers for Israel tells YouTube it's promoting violence; Reinstate CNEPR
UK Lawyers for Israel (UKLFI) has sent a letter to YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki demanding that the channel of the Center for Near Policy Research (CNEPR) be reinstated. The channel was shut down earlier this month for what the social video giant claimed were “repeated or severe violations of our Community Guidelines on Violence or Graphic content.”

CNEPR works to uncover corruption within the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East. The organization has produced several mini documentaries that highlight violence, antisemitism and extremism in UNRWA schools.

Jonathan Turner, chief executive of UKLFI, signed the letter to Wojcicki. In it he wrote that “CNEPR... sought to demonstrate the existence, nature and consequences of the Indoctrination” of UNRWA’s work in its videos. “This was all done in context so as not to shock or disgust or encourage the commission of violent acts. On the contrary the aim was to stop the encouragement of violence. The videos complied with YouTube policies.”

Turner goes on to explain that in his legal estimation, “the censoring of these videos is an unjustified restriction of freedom of expression and information regarding the activities of UNRWA, contrary to the core values of YouTube.

“This censoring is all the more serious at the present time, since States that contribute to UNRWA are currently considering whether to renew its mandate and, if so, on what terms,” the letter continues. “In short, by restricting the visibility of CNEPR’s videos, YouTube risks contributing to a continuation of the promotion of violence, antisemitism and extremism.”

“What is going on in UNRWA schools is a very serious matter,” Turner said. “We should try to ensure [that the materials] get published and UNRWA gets stopped.”

Islamists impersonating Jews
We've uncovered a network of Islamists that are impersonating orthodox Jews to try and create the impression there's mass opposition to Israel from Jews. ???? 95% of the world's Jews support Israel ???? A tiny group of orthodox Jews do not That's why they need to fake it.




Honest Reporting: Religious Freedom in Israel
“The State of Israel … will guarantee freedom of religion, conscience, language, education and culture; it will safeguard the Holy Places of all religions; and it will be faithful to the principles of the Charter of the United Nations.”
Israel’s Proclamation of Independence, 1948

In 1948 Israel’s founders committed the fledgling country to be a Jewish state, but ensured the free practice of religion for all, regardless of religious affiliation. While Israel does not have a constitution, the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, over the years enacted Basic Laws that protect freedom of religious affiliation and practice.

Israel’s 2019 population of roughly 8.4 million people is 75 percent Jewish, 18% Muslim, 2% Christian, and 1.6% Druze. The remaining four percent includes immigrants from the former USSR, some non-identifying and others who identify as Jewish, but do not meet the Orthodox Jewish definition of “Jewish.” There are also communities of Samaritans, Karaites, Ahmadi Muslims, Baha’is and various small (in Israel) Christian churches. And on the far end of the spectrum, there are even some Pagans and Witches in Israel.

Religious Freedom: Government Supported
There are no religious barriers to standing for election to public office and minorities have always been represented in the Knesset. Unlike many western liberal democracies, tax money supports services for religious communities of all faiths. Public money helps support, among other things:
Operating costs of mosques, synagogues and churches.
Salaries of community religious leaders.
Upkeep of numerous holy sites for all religions.

The Ministry of Education funds the school system, including both secular and religious schools – Jewish, Muslim and Christian, as well as some colleges and religious seminaries.

All citizens and guests – the millions of tourists who visit every year – have free and unrestricted access to practice their faith and there is no censorship of sermons. Despite the frosty relations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, an important area of cooperation between the two sides is tourism and ease of access for tour groups through border crossings, particularly for holy sites on both sides such as Jerusalem, Nazareth, Bethlehem and Jericho.

Like other democracies, the laws of the land also apply, so freedom of religious expression does not include a right to violate the laws governing civil society. In 1992, the Knesset passed the Basic Law on Human Dignity and Liberty, which codified civil and human rights into law. It’s an interesting footnote that this law was passed by a Likud government headed by the late Yitzhak Shamir, and modified in 1994 under a Labor government headed by Yitzhak Rabin that added the emphasis of the freedoms expressly worded in the Proclamation of Independence.
Norman Podhoretz and the American Jewish Cause
In two weeks, the Jewish Leadership Conference will award its Herzl Prize to the neoconservative thinker, literary critic, and longtime editor of Commentary. Reflecting on Norman Podhoretz’s legacy, Rick Richman compares his trajectory with that of the Supreme Court justice and American Zionist leader Louis Brandeis, and also that of the Hollywood screenwriter Ben Hecht, who advocated relentlessly for European Jewry during World War II and for the Jews of a nascent Israel thereafter:

[Podhoretz] grew up in a poor section of Brooklyn, in a family of immigrants. He was the son of a milkman, speaking Yiddish at home. . . . In his first years at Commentary, he focused on literature. He was responsible for publishing Philip Roth’s first short story in a national magazine, and wrote piercing reviews on Saul Bellow’s work. Soon, he was combining literary criticism with geopolitical insights, addressing the intellectual issues of the cold war.

He became increasingly troubled by the anti-Americanism infecting the left, and he eventually broke with it, becoming one of the founders of the neoconservative movement. It was not, to put it mildly, a popular thing to do. [Ultimately, he] turned Commentary from a left-wing critic of America into a defender of America and Israel, with exceptional analysis and argument, in essay after essay for 35 years.

After he retired in 1995 at age sixty-five, . . . he wrote five of his twelve books as well as many of his most powerful essays, [including] The Prophets: Who They Were and What They Are, which offered new interpretations of Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel and others, arguing that their messages were the imperatives of rejecting the idolatry of self-worship, which, in modern times, took the form of the disastrous belief that using ideology and coercion, humans could create a perfect society. That idolatry created a 20th century in which 100 million people were murdered by totalitarian states seeking the perfect race or class.

Podhoretz concluded that “Now, as [in ancient times], the battle will have to be fought first and foremost within ourselves and then in the world of ideas around us. . . . Because unless we all commit ourselves to the struggle for our own civilization, it will, like Jerusalem in the days of Jeremiah 2,500 years ago, wind up being sapped from within . . . and it will then become vulnerable to sacking from without.”
Antisemitism is woven into Western culture
One of the few Europeans to have stated unambiguously that antisemitism lurks within Western culture is Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby. In 2016 he wrote:
Antisemitism is an insidious evil. The habits of antisemitism have been burrowing into European and British culture for as long as we can remember. In England, during the late medieval period, the Jewish community faced constant persecution: Shylock, the great villain of the Merchant of Venice, was a cliché of his time. By the time Cromwell reopened England to Jewish settlement under the Commonwealth in the 1650s, antisemitism had mutated within common parlance and culture. It is a shameful truth that, through its theological teachings, the church, which should have offered an antidote, compounded the spread of this virus.

The centuries-old interweaving of antisemitism into Western culture shows up in many ways. Contemporary antisemitism contains not only major elements of medieval antisemitism but also newer manifestations. In many new ideologies, movements, and intellectual currents, expressions of antisemitism eventually come to the fore. The hatred may focus on Jews or on Israel. The phenomenon can be found in a variety of arenas.

In the human rights arena, for example, antisemitism is clearly visible. The UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) is at the top of the list of promoters of the newest type of antisemitism, the endorsement of Israel-hatred. Many of its member states are dictatorships. Hillel Neuer, executive director of UN Watch, summarized it thus: “The United Nations Human Rights Council, located in Geneva, has a standing agenda item against Israel. Israel is the only country specifically targeted at every meeting. Not even major human rights abusers like China, Cuba, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Syria or Zimbabwe are subjected to such treatment.”

Feminism is another movement in which antisemitism frequently manifests itself. American emeritus professor of psychology and women studies Phyllis Chesler, herself a prominent feminist, was invited in 2003 to speak to a mainly African-American and Hispanic-American feminist audience at a conference at Barnard College. She was asked where she stood on the issue of women in Palestine. Chesler answered that Islam is the largest practitioner of gender and religious apartheid in the world. She backed up her statement by referencing forced veiling, arranged marriage, polygamy, honor-based violence, and honor killing in Palestinian society. Chesler says, “A near riot broke out. I was hustled out for my safety. These feminists didn’t care about Palestinian women, but about demonizing Israel.”
Germany’s Problem Is Not Remembering the Holocaust. Its Problem Is Misusing the Memory
In a recent essay titled “The Vanity of Guilt,” the conservative German journalist Andreas Lombard criticized the attitude toward the Holocaust, and Holocaust guilt, in his country, and particularly the ways in which the Shoah has been used to justify Angela Merkel’s immigration policies. Michel Gurfinkiel, calling the essay simultaneously “close to the truth” and “manifestly erroneous,” responds:

For Lombard, “the imperative of remembering” the Holocaust contributes to the crisis. Remembering is thus part of the problem. For me, the very opposite is the case. Now more than ever, we need to remember Auschwitz. Contrary to Lombard, Holocaust awareness is as great a political, ethical, and theological necessity today as it was in the immediate postwar era. Remembering can strengthen Germany’s (and Europe’s) resistance and resilience in the present circumstances—provided one sees the Holocaust for what it really was. . . .

German patriots like Lombard are rightly concerned about their nation’s future. . . . [But] I worry that Lombard is tempted to downplay the singularity of the Holocaust, downgrading it from an absolute evil to—so to say—regular evil. He does not go quite so far, but the fact that he plays with such a view is troubling. . . .

Germany became a stable democracy, and it learned to be admirably honest about the past, . . . by insisting upon remembering the Holocaust as a tragic part of its own history. [Still], there is a kernel of truth in Lombard’s assertion that “the German political and cultural establishment” has developed “a vanity of guilt.” . . .

But you don’t abolish money altogether because some counterfeit is around. It does not make sense to discard or revise the “Holocaust paradigm” because it has been misused and distorted. What is needed is a more accurate remembrance. Germans (and others, too) need to remember that the Holocaust did not target “human beings”; it targeted Jews. and it targeted Jews not for being different or exotic, but for being an essential foundation of European Christian and humanistic civilization.
Melanie Phillips: The fight to the death over Brexit and western culture
I was very pleased to appear on the internet show So What you’re Saying is… with Peter Whittle, director of the New Culture Forum in London. We discussed at some length Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal and what the 2016 Brexit vote told us about Britain. I suggested there was now unprecedented confusion created by, on the one hand, Bojo’s heroic resistance to the Remainer coup against Brexit, democracy and the British people and, on the other, the fact that his deal wasn’t really Brexit at all.

We also discussed antisemitism in Britain, how this was wrapped up with the western cultural collapse I have charted for so many years – and just why I had been for so long the target of unprecedented vitriol by my former comrades on the not-liberal-at-all left.

Peter also very graciously highlighted my books, The World Turned Upside Down; the Global Battle over God, Truth and Power, which was published in 2010, my updated memoir Guardian Angel: My Journey from Leftism to Sanity, and my first novel, The Legacy, which were both published last year.


Douglas Murray: Identity Politics & The Madness of Crowds - Race, Gender & Identity
This week, Peter is joined by acclaimed writer and journalist Douglas Murray to discuss his superb new book "The Madness of Crowds": "In his devastating new book, Douglas Murray examines the twenty-first century's most divisive issues: sexuality, gender, technology and race. He reveals the astonishing new culture wars playing out in our workplaces, universities, schools and homes in the names of social justice, identity politics and 'intersectionality'. We are living through a postmodern era in which the grand narratives of religion and political ideology have collapsed. In their place have emerged a crusading desire to right perceived wrongs and a weaponization of identity, both accelerated by the new forms of social and news media. Narrow sets of interests now dominate the agenda as society becomes more and more tribal – and, as Murray shows, the casualties are mounting. Persons of all political persuasions cannot afford to ignore Murray's masterfully argued and fiercely provocative book, in which he seeks to inject some sense into the discussion around this generation's most complicated issues. He ends with an impassioned call for free speech, shared common values and sanity in an age of mass hysteria."


J Street launches bid to push anti-occupation stance in DNC platform
To launch its 2019 national conference Sunday, the liberal Mideast advocacy group J Street announced a new campaign to pressure 2020 Democratic candidates to oppose Israel’s presence in the West Bank, with the goal of getting the party to include in its official platform this summer a formal opposition to the occupation.

J Street leaders and student activists put out a “call to action” to change the platform to more expressly condemn settlement expansion and support Palestinian aspirations.

“Past party platforms have rightly stated a commitment to Israel’s security and included condemnations of threats and actions against our ally,” the petition states. “Those platforms have, however, also been totally silent on the rights of Palestinians, on Israeli actions that undermine those rights and the prospects for a two-state solution, and on the need for security for both peoples.”

The 2016 platform called for a two-state solution, but did not mention settlements or the occupation. It vowed support for ensuring that Israel can maintain its qualitative military edge and castigated the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel.

The new campaign comes as five Democratic presidential candidates plan to attend the liberal Zionist group’s confab, including Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar, former Housing and Urban Development secretary Julian Castro, and Colorado Senator Michael Bennet.

The two frontrunners, former US vice president Joe Biden and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, are not slated to address the gathering.

J Street President Jeremy Ben-Ami argued that the petition reflected the beliefs of mainstream Democrats.

“The vast majority of Democratic voters believe that the US should support Israel’s security, promote a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and oppose the Israeli government’s policies of occupation and creeping annexation,” Ben-Ami said in a statement. “That approach is good policy and smart politics — which is why the Democrats should firmly commit to it in their party platform.”


Klobuchar at J Street: Trump chose Russia over Israel
Minnesota Senator and Democratic presidential hopeful Amy Klobuchar said on Sunday that the US withdrawal from Syria is bad for Israel.

“When you think of it from an Israeli perspective, and you think of it from the perspective of our allies, once again, this president has chosen to let Russia have a lead and then has again backed away from our allies,” she said Sunday at J Street’s National Conference.

Klobuchar is known in the Jewish community for being the only of seven presidential hopefuls who in February voted with AIPAC on an anti-BDS bill, which consolidated $38 billion in defense assistance for Israel while protecting states that penalize businesses that boycott Israel. The entire caucus voted 25-22 in favor of the bill.

In February, JTA named her as the “go-to Democrat for the Orthodox.”

But while Klobuchar is not a fundamentalist on is separating church and state, she told J Street that she believes Republicans are aiming to divide and undermine bipartisan support for Israel.

“It just showed to me what Mitch McConnell is trying to do all the time: Instead of bringing people together for support of Israel on a bipartisan basis he and president Trump are always looking for those wedges, a way to do things that creates wedges, instead of bringing people together,” the senator said. “I think it has been very negative. And I’m not just talking about one vote. I’m talking about how [Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s] visit was handled, as everyone remembers that.

“I’m talking about how [US President Donald] Trump has supported some of the prime minister’s moves and claims during the election that I disagreed with,” she said. “And I think all of this is resulting in a loss of support for Israel. That’s very bad. As someone that views Israel as our beacon of democracy, I think it is important that we build support in the US.”
Michigan Imam Feted at Interfaith Events, Spews Hate
A Michigan imam preached that the leaders of Saudi Arabia are “agents of the Jews” and should be put to death, as seen in a video posted to Facebook and found by Clarion Project.

The video shows Dearborn Imam Husham al-Hussainy condemning the Saudi royal family as “impure,” calling for them to be executed for the Saudi campaign in Yemen against the Houthi rebels backed by the Iranian regime, and is filled with conspiratorial anti-Semitism.

Speaking in Arabic, al-Hussainy said that the Saudi leaders are “agents of the Jews” and that the so-called Zionist conspiracy should be blamed for any Saudi transgression.

Al-Hussainy even went so far as to claim that the Saudi airplanes bombing Yemen “are Israeli airplanes with Israeli policy and Israeli targets.”

He then urged Muslims to “stand together” with Christians against the “oppressive Saudi-Zionist airplanes.”

Revealed: UK Labour Party’s Corbyn Defended Candidate Who Called Israel ‘Pig,’ Retweeted Antisemitic Article
Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the UK Labour party who is widely considered an antisemite, has defended a party candidate who referred to Israel as a “pig” and ranted online against “Zionists,” The Daily Mail reported on Sunday.

Salma Yaqoob, a former member of Israel-hating politician George Galloway’s Respect Party, is shortlisted to be a Labour candidate for mayor of the West Midlands. She has been vehemently opposed by several Labour members and MPs, and the party’s LGBT organization has denounced her as a homophobe.

The Mail discovered a 2013 video of Corbyn calling Yaqoob, a “hero” and “fantastic activist.”

Asked to comment, Corbyn’s spokesman said, “Of course Jeremy praised Salma Yaqoob in 2013 for her years of work on anti-war and anti-austerity campaigns. Those campaigns have been vindicated.”

Yaqoob was a member of the far-left organization Stop the War, of which Corbyn was also a prominent leader.

Dissident Labour MP Ruth Smeeth said of Corbyn’s comment, “I personally think Salma Yaqoob has no place in our movement.”

“The idea anyone could see her as a hero or a heroine is beyond my comprehension,” she added.

The Board of Deputies of British Jews slammed Yaqoob, saying, “Not only was Salma Yaqoob formerly a senior associate of George Galloway in the Respect Party, but she has also retweeted an article about ‘Rothschild bankers’ arrested in Iceland — a clear antisemitic trope.”

The group’s president Marie van der Zyl said, “No one who refers to Jews as ‘pigs’ could possibly be considered for high office by any reputable party.”
Labour Candidate Booted Out Over Anti-Semitism Tweets Re-Selected
Rebecca Gordon-Nesbitt was removed as the Labour’s candidate in the target seat of South Thanet in the midst of an anti-semitism row. Last year Guido revealed she was running a ‘think tank’ which defended Ken Livingstone and Jackie Walker and questioned the “Zionist sympathies” of Jewish MPs. In response Labour’s NEC surprisingly took action…

Yesterday Gordon-Nesbitt was selected again for the seat, despite being blocked by Labour’s NEC just one year ago. Guido understands lobbying from the Shadow Chancellor was crucial in turning around her fortunes…

McDonnell bailing out his dodgy allies and securing the adoration of the nastier side of his party…
Honest Reporting: The History and Failure of the Arab Boycott of Israel
The idea to boycott Israel began to receive a lot of attention in the 21st century due to the creation of the BDS movement in 2005. But boycotting as a method to cause damage and attempt to destroy Israel actually began in the early part of the 20th century with the Arab boycott.

As early as 1922, the Arab community in British controlled Palestine sought to hurt the growing Jewish community in the region via economic boycott of Jewish-owned businesses in the land. Those who violated the boycott were attacked – both physically and with damages to the goods that they sold. The Arab Executive Committee of the Syrian-Palestinian Congress implemented a boycott of Jewish businesses in 1933, and the Arab Labor Federation did the same in 1934.

The Palestinian Arab leadership called for a strict boycott in 1936 and outright threatened violence against anyone who violated the boycott. These boycotts sought not only to hurt the Jews already living in Palestine but to also scare diaspora Jews from continuing to move to the region. These boycotts were unsuccessful because Palestinian society was already very reliant on Jewish doctors and professionals in other fields.

The Arab League formed in the mid-1940s and on December 2, 1945 it prohibited buying or using any products made by Jewish companies in Palestine and prohibiting Arabs from using Jewish contractors, transportation services, insurance companies and banks. They established a Permanent Boycott Committee with offices in all Arab states and required anyone selling anything to an Arab state to demonstrate that they did not originate from Jews in Palestine.

This boycott was also unsuccessful, and the Boycott Committee’s first annual report indicated continued robust trade between Palestine, where most companies were owned by Jews, and the neighboring Arab states. The committee ceased to exist following Israel’s declaration of its independence in May 1948, but the Arab League continued its calls for a boycott of Jewish companies in Israel. Arab states imposed a land, sea, and air blockade on the newly founded state, confiscating Israeli goods shipped through Port Suez, Port Said, and Alexandria – creating a significant challenge for Israeli exports.
Disguised as Agricultural Work, French Pro-BDS Org also Supports Terrorism
The Association France Palestine Solidarite (AFPS), a pro-Palestinian organization that has declared itself part of the anti-Israel boycott movement, is also involved in funding the activities of an organization tied to the Popular front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) terror organization, TPS has learned.

AFPS describes itself as an organization that “brings together people committed to the right of peoples to self-determination” and works to “develop solidarity with the Palestinian people.”

AFPS supports the Union of Agricultural Work Committees (UAWC), an organization associated with the PFLP and which Samer Arabid is one of its leaders. Arabid lead the PFLP terror cell which murdered Rina Schnerb and injured her brother and father in a spring near Dolev in August.

UAWC hired Arabid even after he was convicted as a terrorist. He oversaw the UAWC accounts.

Similarly, Abed Razek Faraj, a PLFP member and a former convicted terrorist, managed the committee’s accounts. Bashir al-Hairi, president of the UWAC trustees board until 2011, was convicted for terrorism and served as a member of the PFLP’s political bureau.

The association between the UAWC and the PLFP is known and public: the UAWC held a ceremony in honor of “Solidarity day with the PLFP’s Secretary-General,” Ahmed Sa’adat who is imprisoned in Israel for his involvement in the assassination of Israeli Minister Rehavam Ze’evi.


Upholding the Values of Duke University in the Face of Antisemitism
In the past few weeks, there has been a lot of news about the Duke-UNC Consortium for Middle East Studies (CMES), and how the department allocates its funds from the Department of Education. The CMES department received Title VI funding for all its activities, some of which were clearly anti-Israel and antisemitic.

This is extremely problematic, according to the US Department of Human Health and Services, as “Title VI prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, or national origin in any program or activity that receives Federal funds or other Federal financial assistance.”

It was also found that the consortium places a higher value on classes regarding Islamic studies at the expense of religious minorities in the region, such as Christians, Jews, Baha’is, Yazidis, Kurds, and Druze. The Department of Education stated that the consortium “has failed to carefully distinguish between activities lawfully funded under Title VI and other activities” and is “plainly unqualified for taxpayer support.” Despite this ongoing investigation, the consortium kept its funding for the 2019-20 academic year.

One of the main examples of the obvious anti-Israel and antisemitic bias found on these campuses was the “Conflict Over Gaza: People, Politics, and Possibilities” conference.

The supposedly “academic” and “open-minded” conference featured a Palestinian rapper who encouraged the crowd to sing along to a song whose lyrics said, “I cannot be antisemitic alone … let’s try it together.”

What was supposed to be a political conference about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict quickly devolved into hate speech, which was welcomed by the audience. On the heels of the new Federal investigation of the Duke-UNC Middle East Studies program regarding its anti-Israel tendencies and misuse of Federal grants to “advance ideological priorities,” it is increasingly important to show how dangerous this anti-Israel bias is on campus.

Groups such as Students for Justice in Palestine (SPJ), and even members of the Duke faculty and Duke University Press (DUP), openly support the anti-Israel and antisemitic BDS movement. From an “apartheid wall” to blatant antisemitic publications by the DUP, Duke University has a significant presence of underlying antisemitism.
Examining the BBC’s claim of Palestinian support for the two-state solution
In other words, Zomlot is saying that although the Palestinians would prefer a more ‘desirable’ one-state option which would eradicate the Jewish state and bring an end to Jewish self-determination, they are prepared to settle in “the immediate future” for their partisan interpretation of a two-state solution which – notably – does not include recognition of Israel as the Jewish state because they consider all of Israel to be “rightly” theirs.

That of course is significantly different to way in which the BBC portrays the Palestinian position to its audiences. The problem is not that Palestinian officials such as Zomlot and Saeb Erekat do not get enough BBC airtime to explain their stance but that BBC journalists refrain from asking challenging but relevant questions such as why the PA’s interpretation of the two-state solution does not include recognition of Israel as the Jewish state.
Homeless man given 3 months in jail for starting Minnesota synagogue blaze
A homeless man who pleaded guilty to starting a fire that destroyed a 117-year-old synagogue in Minnesota was sentenced to three months in jail and 192 hours of community service.

Matthew Amiot, 36, was sentenced Friday, according to local station KTTC-TV. He pleaded guilty last month to negligent fire charges.

Amiot received credit for the 36 days he has already served in jail.

The fire destroyed the Adas Israel Synagogue in Duluth on September 9. Authorities say Amiot used a lighter to ignite combustible materials outside the main building, near a sukkah, or temporary structure used for the holiday of Sukkot.
This undated booking photo from the St. Louis (Minnesota) County Sheriff’s Office shows Matthew James Amiot, who was arrested, September 13, 2019, in connection to a fire at the Adas Israel Congregation, in Duluth, Minnesota. (St. Louis (Minnesota) County Sheriff’s Office via AP)

Amiot told police he tried to spit on the fire to put it out and walked away when that didn’t work.

Police don’t believe the fire was a hate crime.
Italian Auschwitz survivor and senator target of 200 antisemitic messages every day
Italian Holocaust survivor and Senator for life, Liliana Segre, 89, is the target of about 200 online antisemitic messages and threats every day, the Rome-based daily La Repubblica reported on Saturday.

“This dirty Jew is called Liliana Segre. Ask yourselves what the f**k she did to be paid by us and she is pro-invasion [of migrants]? Hitler, you did not do your job well,” read one of the messages.

“I wonder why you did not drop dead like all your relatives,” read another.

The information revealed by La Repubblica is included in a special report produced by the Foundation Jewish Contemporary Documentation Center (CDEC) in Milan.

Born in 1930 into a Jewish family in Milan, Segre was deported to Auschwitz in 1944 at the age of 13.

For the past 30 years, she has been one of the more active witnesses of the Holocaust, speaking to thousands of schools and groups all over Italy.
Richard Branson Inaugurates Virgin Atlantic Service to Tel Aviv


DJ Hodor proves he is the mother of beats in Tel Aviv rave
The character Hodor, played by North-Irish actor Kristian Nairn in the global hit television series Game of Thrones, is famous for only saying one word. Yet Nairn, the man who plays him, is famous for being a successful progressive house DJ.

Nairn played backstage with Megadeth in 2018 and was the resident DJ of Belfast gay club Kremlin.

He was the opening act of Dutch electronic music super-star Tiesto in his Thursday Tel Aviv show.

Tiesto, the stage name of Tijs Michiel Verwest, is a frequent collaborator and remixer to the biggest names in music, including Beyoncé, Kanye West, Coldplay, Sam Smith, Major Lazer, Calvin Harris and many more.

The rave party was held in Expo Tel Aviv to a packed house of thousands, other musicians included Fedde Le Grand, which is his actual name, not a stage name, and DJ Dor Dekel.
Israeli Artist Tamar Shawki: First Jewish Singer in Arabic Music School


Historic Copy of Hebrew Bible Returns to Spain to Go on Display in 2020
One of the oldest and most expensive copies of the Hebrew Bible was returned to Spain, where it was created in 1476, and will go on display next year.

The Kennicott Bible, with more than 900 pages, will be showcased in the city of Santiago de Compostela—a Christian pilgrimage site in northern Spain and the capital of the Galicia region—on April 12, 2020, announced the local government of Galicia.

It was written by Moisés Ibn Zabara and illustrated by Joseph Ibn Hayyim for Isaac di Braga, an influential Jewish businessman from Galicia. It’s now worth millions of dollars.

Oxford University, which owns the copy of the Bible, will lend it to the Museo Centro Gaiás in Santiago for an exhibition titled “Galicia: A Story of the World.”

The bible turned up at Oxford in the United Kingdom in 1771.

It is unclear how it made its way there, but was taken to Portugal and then North Africa before its whereabouts were unknown for about 300 years. Many Jews fleeing the Spanish Inquisition that began in 1492 smuggled out books and artifacts that would have been censored or destroyed on the Iberian Peninsula.
Pittsburgh Steelers to hold moment of silence for Tree of Life victims
The Pittsburgh Steelers, a US football team, announced on their twitter page on Sunday that they will be holding a moment of silence at the beginning of their Monday night football game.

The moment of silence is to remember and honor the victims and survivors of the shooting on the Tree of Life synagogue on the one year anniversary of the attack.

Steelers President Art Rooney II said on twitter, "On this anniversary of the tragic day in our city when innocent people were gunned down in the Tree of Life Synagogue, we pause to offer our thoughts and prayers for the families of those who lost their lives as well as those who survived that terrible day. Since that day our community has resolved to stay stronger than hate and anti-Semitism.”

This is not the first moment of silence for the Steelers. Last year, the football team held a moment of silence to honor the victims the day after it occurred.

They also edited their team logo to include a Star of David and the words "Stronger than Hate." The team then donated $70,000 to the victims of the shooting.
Global Jewish leaders honor the memories of 11 Pittsburgh shooting victims
At Sunday’s opening of the Jewish Agency’s board of governors meeting from Oct. 27-29 in Jerusalem, Jewish leaders from around the world stood side by side to memorialize the first anniversary of the attack on the Tree of Life – Or L’Simcha Synagogue in Pittsburgh that claimed 11 Jewish lives and injured six others.

Jewish Agency chair Isaac Herzog lit a memorial candle in memory of those murdered in the shooting – the deadliest anti-Semitic attack in American Jewish history.

“B’chol dor va dor (‘in every generation’), there are challenges for each generation. What strikes me is that some of our challenges today are similar to those of 90 years ago. Anti-Semitism, divisiveness among the Jewish people. … We cannot put our heads in the sand. We have challenges we must meet. We must also build the future,” he told those gathered.

Among hundreds of other communal leaders at the meeting who stood for a moment of silence were Jewish Agency board chair Michael Siegel, and Pittsburgh community leader and chair of United Israel Appeal Cindy Shapira.

Shapira told the gathering of global Jewish leaders: “What happened after the attack is testimony to the resilience of the Jewish community, as well as the community at large. We remember and repair together.”

She explained that she chose to be at the board of governors in Jerusalem and miss the numerous commemorative events in her hometown of Pittsburgh to focus on the resilience of Jews everywhere, saying: “I’m here at this meeting because the Jewish Agency and leadership of Jewish people around the world are in a focused mission to connect the Jewish people to each other and to Israel, security all over the world and bring those to the homeland who want to be here.”

Tens of thousands of people around the world will “pause with Pittsburgh” and receive a text message on Oct. 27 at 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, calling for a moment of silence and naming the 11 Jewish worshippers who lost their lives.
Remembering the victims: 1 year to the Pittsburgh Synagogue Massacre




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