Friday, March 21, 2014

From Ian:

No, you shouldn’t have visited Arafat’s grave
I highly doubt though that the PA officials you met with spoke about the town squares throughout the PA named after suicide bombers. I also doubt they gave you a glimpse into the PA’s official educational system or media which daily incites against the State of Israel and the Jewish people.
I’ll save what was missing from your visit for another discussion, and give you time to explore that reality here.
But back to the Arafat smiley.
The bottom line is whether you like it or not, whether it was your intention or not – a smiling group photo at the grave of someone who led a life of pure terror, murder, and evil, DOES in fact honor his memory, and does serve as a statement of approval.
Sponsors of Harvard Arafat Grave Visit Attack TruthRevolt
Barry Shrage, President of Boston’s Combined Jewish Philanthropies, sent a letter to his Board of Directors and Past Board Members harshly condemning the coverage of Harvard Israel Trek 2014’s visit to Yasser Arafat’s grave. Instead of speaking out against the visit, Shrage elected to attack and bully members of the pro-Israel community who were outraged by the photo, labeling them “ideologically motivated bloggers” and “at the extreme edge of the Jewish community.”
Shrage then provided a link to a student response that was posted on The Times of Israel under the title “Photo Distorts Purpose and Impact of Harvard Israel ‘Trek.’ The original title of the article was “No apologies for visiting Arafat’s grave” though it was later changed to “Yes, we visited Arafat’s grave.” The URL of the website still reads
Missing from the statement is a condemnation of the group visit and photo by Arafat's tombstone. Arafat was responsible for the murder of thousands of people, with a special focus on Jews.
J Street U Attacks David Horowitz Freedom Center
J Street U Penn attacked the Hillel of Greater Philadelphia (HGP), The J Street Challenge and The David Horowitz Freedom Center. After explaining how they felt attacked by the movie and Hillel of Greater Philadelphia’s sponsorship of the film, J Street U Penn attempted to challenge HGP’s co-sponsors:
Ironically, J Street U has come under heavy fire for its association with numerous anti-Israel and anti-Semitic groups:
J Street U Jerusalem hosted an event with an anti-IDF group and the group’s lead speaker equated the IDF with Palestinian suicide bombers.
J Street U Tufts sponsored an event with Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP). The SJP chapter at Northeastern University was so extreme and anti-Semitic that they were suspended by the university.
J Street U takes its students to the grave of terrorist Yasser Arafat.
J Street U students clapped for the “right of return” at their conference.

Oxfam posts Cynthia McKinney webpage
The international food aid organization Oxfam, recently the subject of controversy for its condemnation of Scarlett Johansson’s appearance in a SodaStream advertisement, has a page on its website devoted to promoting Cynthia McKinney.
The page, which is headlined “Ms. McKinney is one of those old school social activists that sorely seems absent today”, defends McKinney’s “9/11 Truth” views, repeating her charge that President Bush knew in advance about the 9/11 attacks, and says she was driven from office for saying this. It goes on to state that President Bush and Prime Minister Tony Blair were convicted of war crimes by a people’s tribunal conducted in Malaysia by a group headed by former Malaysian Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, of whom the statement says that McKinney is a follower and supporter. It also praises McKinney’s support for the regime of Muammar Gaddafi, and condemns what it describes as “the U.S./NATO/Israel aggression against the Arab Jamahiriya state”.
Daniel Gordis: A dose of nuance
A few weeks ago, Jeremy Ben- Ami of J Street and I debated each other in Atlanta. It was labeled a “conversation,” but it was really a debate.
So, for a good portion of the time, I laid out my case for why Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas will not make a deal. He’ll never give up on the right of return. His refusal to recognize Israel as a Jewish state is a symptom of the sad fact that the Palestinians hate Israel (and let’s be honest, the Jews, too) far more than they care about themselves.
There’s the problem of Hamas and Gaza, and Abbas’s worry about Hamas potentially taking over. There’s the unpleasant fact that even if Abbas did agree, what happens when he or his successor is overthrown? What happens when Ramallah turns into Tahrir Square? Where will we be then? Nothing new in all these arguments – just a summary of what most people who think already know.
And then I sat down.
Then it was Ben-Ami’s turn to respond, and he made the most important comment of the entire evening. “I just find that so depressing,” he said. In not so many words, he was just saying that he cannot accept a world in which the options are so bleak – so he chooses to believe that there is a way out.
Because my view is depressing, it must be wrong.
Israeli Christian Leaders Call Out EU Hypocrisy on Persecution of Mideast Christians
A new coalition of Israeli Christian leaders called the “Israeli Christian Lobby” has sent a letter to the head of the European Union’s delegation to Israel, Lars Faaborg-Andersen, expressing their frustration with the EU’s “hypocrisy” on the issue of the ethnic cleansing of Middle Eastern Christians.
“The slaughter, persecution, discrimination, apartheid, the ethnic cleansing, and all the crimes committed against the Indigenous Aramaic & Christians of the Middle East, in Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Gaza, Lebanon and the Palestinian Authority, among others, and continue to be committed without any intervention of the Western countries,” the letter says.
“We are turning to you as someone who represents a Western country, which engraved the values of human and citizens’ rights on its flag. Get up and take action,” it adds.
French minister: anti-Zionism is new anti-Semitism
French Interior Minister Manuel Valls called anti-Zionism “an invitation to anti-Semitism” at a rally in Paris commemorating four Jews who were murdered in Toulouse in 2012.
Valls made the statement during a speech on Wednesday – the two-year anniversary of the murder at a local Jewish day school of Rabbi Jonathan Sandler; his two sons, Arieh, 6, and Gabriel, 3; and Miriam Monsenego, 8.
The old anti-Semitism of the French extreme right, Valls said, “is renewed: It feeds off hate for Israel. It feeds off anti-Zionism. Because anti-Zionism is an invitation to anti-Semitism.”
Galloway Lies: 'I Didn't Refuse to Share a Stage With an Israeli'
The incident is not the first time that Galloway has been caught lying publicly. In August last year, he was caught lying to the House of Commons after being confronted over his comments that Israel was supplying Al Qaeda with chemical weapons in Syria. He made the comments on his Iranian state-funded TV programme on Press TV.
Eylon Aslan-Levy, the Israeli student who Galloway walked out on last year told Breitbart London: "Why has Galloway not learnt his lesson, after being caught lying to Parliament, that both his bigotry and subsequent mendacity are bound to be caught on camera?"
In a statement released yesterday, even the LSE's Palestine Society slammed the appearance, stating: "LSESU Palestine Society does NOT support George Galloway's lecture on campus. Between his rape and sexual assault apologia, his admiration of dictator Saddam Hussein, and his anti-Israeli comments; his presence on campus would bring more harm than good and legitimate him despite his hugely problematic stances."
The ISM: A Tale of Two Villages
Just as the village of Itamar joined together in support of the surviving Fogel children, the nearby Palestinian village of Awata joined to together to protect their murderers, who were praised as" heroes”
Suspected accomplices were arrested including Salah Aladin Salim Awad, 31, a PFLP member and Hakim’s uncle. He helped the suspects cover their tracks after the killings, telling them to burn their blood-soaked clothes and sending the firearms they stole from Itamar to a friend in Ramallah. Jad Avid, 31, from Ramallah, hid the firearms after receiving them from Salah Awad. He was arrested in his home and the firearms were seized by the IDF. Maazan Niad Awad, 43, from Awarta, is Hakim’s father and a PFLP member. Mahmed Saeed Awad, 26, is a PFLP member in Awarta who helped plan the Itamar attacks.
MEMRI: Egyptian Columnist: Egypt Should Sue Israel For The Ten Plagues, Turkey For The Ottoman Occupation, France For The Napoleonic Invasion, And Britain For Colonialism (apparently not satire)
In a March 11, 2014 article in the Egyptian daily Al-Yawm Al-Sabi', Egyptian columnist Ahmad Al-Gamal, who also writes for Al-Ahram and Al-Masri Al-Yawm, advocated suing Israel, Turkey, Britain, and France for damages they caused Egypt from biblical times until the 20th century. Israel, he said, should be sued for the damage caused by the Ten Plagues and for the precious materials used by the Israelites to build the Holy Tabernacle in the desert, and Turkey should pay damages for invading Egypt in the Ottoman period, for drafting Egyptian artisans to build projects in Istanbul, for stealing antiquities, manuscripts, and books, and for plotting with the Zionists against Egypt during the 1950s and 1960s. As for France, it must pay compensation for Napoleon's invasion at the close of the 18th century and for the 1956 Suez Campaign, and Britain must pay for 72 years of occupation, during which Egypt was subjected to theft and robbery.
Don’t Insult My Life’s Work By Calling Israeli Policies ‘Genocide’ By Adolf Hitler (satire)
I’m as anti-Jew as the next Nazi, but stop saying Israel commits genocide against the Palestinians. Calling anything Israel does to the Palestinians “genocide” is a slap in the face to those of us who devoted years of our lives and our entire political careers to actual genocide.
I’m tired of hearing that canard. We murderous despots know a genocide when we see one, and the Israeli occupation just isn’t it. Where are the mass killing sites where people are forced to dig their own graves, then mowed down by machine gun fire? Where are the battalions of paramilitary police dedicated to methodically erasing community after community? The gas chambers? The crematoria? If this is genocide, it’s the single most unsuccessful attempt at one the world has ever seen. What sort of attempt at ethnic cleansing results in a population increase among the victims? (h/t Mightier than the Pen)
The great apartheid lie
Joseph Goebbels, the minister of propaganda in Adolf Hitler’s Nazi government, infamously said: “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it.” These words best capture the efforts of the anti-Israel activists who routinely accuse the Jewish state of perpetrating apartheid policies against Palestinians.
Over the years, these glorified propagandists have relentlessly repeated the great apartheid lie across multiple platforms. One of the most pernicious of these is the so-called “Israel Apartheid Week,” which took place during the past two weeks, and which whips up hate across campuses and cities throughout the world, as the Israel apartheid lie is repeated again and again.
Indeed, the lie has now been repeated so many times, that, as Goebbels predicted, people who are otherwise decent and well-intentioned are starting to believe it.
UN’s Falk accuses Israel of ethnic cleansing
A UN rights expert who probes Israel’s conduct towards Palestinians on Friday accused the Jewish state of a campaign of ethnic cleansing and apartheid policies.
“The realities on the ground are worsening from the point of view of both international law and from the point of view of the Palestinian people,” Richard Falk, an 82-year-old American who is an emeritus law professor at Princeton University, told reporters.
UN rights council plans BDS assault on Israel, but Israeli diplomats are on strike
While Israeli diplomats remain on strike, the 47-nation UN Human Rights Council is planning to launch a massive attack on the Jewish state next week in a series of five resolutions that — expressly citing controversial UN official Richard Falk — include new accusations of racism, along with calls to impose “international criminal liability” on businesses with indirect links amounting to “corporate complicity in breaches of international law related to illegal settlements.”
The following draft resolutions, drafted by Syria and the Palestinian Authority, are scheduled to be adopted on March 27-28, at the end of 25th session of the Human Rights Council:
Say NO to Modern Language Association's Academic Discrimination Against Israel
A disturbing recent development has been that a few faculty associations have voted for academic boycotts of Israel or passed resolutions critical of the Jewish state.
Last January, the Delegate Assembly of the Modern Language Association (MLA) passed a resolution unfairly criticizing Israel. Now, the full MLA membership is supposed to vote on the resolution in a process that goes from April 21 to June 1.
Fortunately, some faculty members have mobilized in a group, MLA Members for Scholars' Rights, to fight back. Their letter and petition are below.
*Only MLA members can vote. But if you know any MLA members, or have contacts with people who do, please forward the statement below to them and encourage them to vote against the resolution.
Wiesenthal Center Denounces Loyola University Vote Endorsing Anti-Israel Boycott
“Let’s be clear. This is not a vote for peace, nor is it about justice,” Associate Dean, Rabbi Abraham Cooper told The Algemeiner in an email on Thursday. “This vote fits neatly in the ongoing international campaign to demonize and delegitimize Israel. It applies a hypocritical and anti-Semitic double standard that singles out only Israel for blame and punishment, without improving the life of a single Palestinian.”
British Architects Make A BDS Move
'Former RIBA president Angela Brady’s motion, calling for the suspension of Israeli professional body from the International Architects Union (IAU), has been approved
The motion against the Israeli Association of United Architects (IAUA), which was tabled at RIBA Council yesterday (19 March), was carried by 23 votes in favour, with 16 against and 10 abstentions.
The move had already received the backing of the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland (RIAS) last week, but had come under fire from members from Constructive Dialogue who claimed it was ‘misguided and one-sided’ ....
Guardian Headline Fail Over Golan Heights Attack
Spot the difference? While the Daily Telegraph’s headline makes it clear that Israel was responding to an attack on its troops, The Guardian’s does little to dispel the impression that Israel simply carried out an act of aggression.
In addition, the use of the word “Syrians” implies actual human beings were the targets of the Israeli action, making no distinction between civilians and military personnel. In any case, The Guardian headline misleads on this point as the actual targets were military facilities i.e. structures and not people.
Yet another headline fail from The Guardian.
Japan PM to visit Anne Frank house following vandalism
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe plans to visit the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam this weekend, an official said Thursday, after a man was arrested for vandalizing copies of her diary in Tokyo libraries.
Abe is scheduled to call at her former hideout on Sunday on the sidelines of a nuclear-security summit and a Group of Seven meeting on the crisis in Ukraine, the foreign ministry official said.
“Prime Minister Abe is expected to convey a message about Japan’s pledge not to fight a war again but to pursue peace,” the official said.
Beyonce and Jay Z Visit the Anne Frank House
Beyonce and Jay Z visited the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam today, where according to museum staff they spent more than an hour. Beyonce, fresh off last night’s performance at Amsterdam’s Ziggo Dome (she heads to Antwerp tonight), posted two photographs on Instagram posing near images of the young diarist.
She also left a note in the visitor’s log, which was hopefully better than the one Justin Bieber wrote.
Lenny Kravitz’s Jewish Uncle Honored
Private First Class Leonard M. Kravitz awarded posthumous Medal of Honor
There was a famous face in the crowd when President Obama awarded 24 long overdue Medals of Honor—many of them posthumous—to Jewish and Hispanic veterans this week. Rocker Lenny Kravitz attended the ceremony, at which his uncle, Leonard M. Kravitz, after whom he was named, was honored posthumously for his service in the Korean War.
Private First Class Leonard M. Kravitz was one of several Jewish veterans honored at Tuesday’s ceremony, decades after their service, following a more than 10-year congressional review of veterans whose ethnicities likely caused their wartime contributions to be overlooked for the nation’s highest honor. Kravitz, who was born in Brooklyn, N.Y. in 1931, died in 1951 while serving in the Korean War, and was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, the nation’s second-highest honor.
Israeli Company Creating Drinking Water Out of Thin Air Now Used by Seven Armies (VIDEO)
Water-Gen’s solar or electric-powered water generators, which can sit on the ground or in vehicles such as tanks, produce between 10 and 20 gallons of fresh, cold, drinking water per day. The Tel Aviv-based company originally designed the generating unit for hydrating troops in extreme combat situations.
The generating process begins with an air filtering unit facing outside that extracts humidity from the air and works like an air dehumidifier to remove toxins from the moist air. The clean air then enters GENius, the company’s unique heat exchanging system that produces water from the humidity. The water collects at the bottom of the unit and fills up water tanks before flowing to a tap.
Israeli Venture Capitalist: ‘Under the Hood,’ Many Major Tech Advances Started Life in Israel
Israeli venture capitalist Jon Medved told Charlie Rose in a recent interview that behind the progress of many of the world’s tech giants, such as Google and Microsoft, is the blue and white of Israeli innovation.
“A lot of the technology you see coming out of Google and Microsoft, Intel and Cisco, actually started its life in Israel,” said Medved, CEO of OurCrowd, a funding platform for investors to back Israeli start-ups.
Medved called Israel’s high tech sector “remarkable” and explained that “under the hood,” many of the world’s advances in technology originate in Israel.
Kenyan sets new Jerusalem Marathon record
Crossing the finish line two hours and sixteen minutes after starting, Kenyan Ronald Kimeli Kurgat became the fastest ever person to run the Jerusalem Marathon Friday.
Kurgat finished at 2:16:06, setting a new course record and beating last year’s winner — and former record setter – Ethiopian Abraham Kabeto Katale by nearly four minutes.
Katale finished the course at 2:16:29 in 2013.
Left for Dead in a Terror Attack, Now She's Running the Marathon
One winter's day in 2011, Kay Wilson's life would change forever.
On a hike with her friend Kristine Luken in the Mata forest, near the city of Beit Shemesh, the two were subjected to a brutal attack by two Arab terrorists, Aiad Fatfata and Kifah Ghanimat. The savage ordeal left Kristine dead, and Kay fighting for her life - spared the same fate only by playing dead despite the excruciating pain.
But now, just three years on, Kay is taking part in today's Jerusalem Marathon - a physical and emotional journey she hopes will serve as an inspiration to others.
Tel Aviv Attempts to Set Guinness World Record for Largest Shabbat Dinner With 1,000 Jews (INTERVIEW)
The city of Tel Aviv will host a Shabbat dinner that is expected to set a Guinness-certified world record for the largest Shabbat dinner in modern history if 1,000 Jews attend the Friday night event in June, to be held at Hangar 11, in the Tel Aviv Port.
The event will be hosted by Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai, Israel’s former chief rabbi, and other leading figures in Tel Aviv life. It is being sponsored by City of Tel Aviv-Yafo, Hangar 11, Golan Heights Winery, NakedSea Salt, and UK Toremet, plus public donations to raise the $25,000 needed to cover the cost of the meal. The dinner is free for all attendees.

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