Wednesday, January 28, 2015

From Ian:

NGO Monitor: B’Tselem Adds to the Chorus of False Gaza War Allegations
In its report on IDF strikes during the 2014 Gaza conflict, B’Tselem presents a simplistic and distorted political narrative of Israeli guilt and Palestinian victimhood, according to Jerusalem-based research institute NGO Monitor. B’Tselem’s publication follows those of Amnesty International, Physicians for Human Rights-Israel, and other investigation NGOs, contributing to the campaign surrounding the UN Human Rights Council by William Schabas, as well as Palestinian Authority efforts focused on the International Criminal Court.
“Once again, and regardless of the circumstances and available evidence, B’Tselem has contorted the facts in order to pronounce Israel guilty,” said Anne Herzberg, NGO Monitor’s Legal Advisor. “Contrary to such claims, Hamas is morally and legally responsible for civilian deaths in Gaza: Hamas systematically conducts military operations from within civilian areas and stores its rockets in schools, mosques, and private homes.”
B’Tselem’s claims regarding international law are marked by major omissions and distortions. It notably fails to state that under the laws of war, the presence of civilians does not render military objectives immune from attack. B’Tselem also does not explain why targeting Hamas fighters or Hamas command centers did not “effectively assist military efforts” or “provide a military advantage” to Israel.
NGO Monitor notes that, as in the past, this publication fails to present definitive evidence that would justify the allegations. Indeed, it is clear that B’Tselem, like other politicized NGOs, lacks the necessary information, including military intelligence and command decisions. B’Tselem also lacked direct access to Gaza, instead presenting unverifiable “testimonies” from purported victims and eyewitnesses in Hamas-controlled territory, mixed with other data that originated with the Hamas Ministry of Health in Gaza. (h/t Bob Knot)
Europe's Real "Resistance"
Europe's policies of encouraging groups such as Hamas, which constantly espouse violence, demolishes the Palestinian effort to achieve a responsible Palestinian state that finally could end the conflict with Israel.
The West has been duped. The French have naïvely taken the bait: they now associate Palestinian "Resistance" with the courageous French underground Résistance that fought the Germans in World War II. They incorrectly assume that the Palestinian "Resistance' must be a good thing, too.
But the Palestinian Resistance bears no resemblance to the French Résistance of Word War II. There is no way to compare them. The Palestinian "Resistance" is nothing more than terrorist organizations repressing their own people. They do not resist an evil force; they are an evil force.
The truth is that the Europeans do not really care about the Palestinians, only about destroying Israel.
Now the International Criminal Court is planning to investigate Israel because it had the gall to defend itself against terrorism, while what did Europe do? Europe, in the face of terrorism, invited every terrorist-sponsoring dictator to join it in a march to protest the very murders that these dictators had paid for.
There is no difference between Hamas's aspirations to be "liberated from the Zionist occupation," and radical Islam's aspirations to be liberated from the "Christian occupation" of Europe.
All "Resistance" should be against radical Islam as embodied by groups such as Hamas, Islamic Jihad, al-Qaeda, the Muslim Brotherhood, and the Islamic State, among others. They are the ones we should resist. They should not be allowed to rule us in some Islamist "Palestinian State."
Beinart is Wrong on Palestinian Incitement
On January 15, noted Israel critic Peter Beinart declared that Palestinians who hate Israel never claim that they were inspired by anti-Israel incitement.
Just six days later, on January 21, a Palestinian who stabbed twelve Israelis on a Tel Aviv bus said he was inspired by "radical Islamic broadcasts."
Beinart is a CNN commentator, a columnist for Haaretz, and a fellow at a liberal think think, the New America Foundation. He made a splash in 2012 in the Jewish world with his book The Crisis of Zionism, in which he called for a boycott of Israelis who reside in areas beyond the pre-1967 armistice line.
Appearing on the "Voice of Israel" radio show on January 15, Beinart attempted to explain Palestinians hatred of Israel and Jews. Here's what he said:
"I know a lot of Palestinians who hate Israel, in fact I would say almost all the Palestinians I know hate Israel, but when I ask them why they hate Israel, and I've talked many, many, many times with people about this, they don't mention textbooks, or movies, or names of streets that have terrorists on them…But what they tell me, what I hear about, again and again and again, is the personal trauma and suffering that they and people they love have experienced."
Internal Emails Show Al Jazeera English Banning Use of Terms ‘Terrorist,’ ‘Militant,’ ‘Islamist’
Shortly after news broke of a deadly January 27 attack by Islamic terrorists on a hotel in Libya’s capital, Al Jazeera English executive Carlos van Meek shot out an email to his employees.
“All: We manage our words carefully around here,” the network’s head of output wrote to staff at the Doha-based news channel’s New York and Washington, D.C. newsrooms. “So I’d like to bring to your attention some key words that have a tendency of tripping us up.”
In an email obtained by National Review Online, van Meek warned the network’s journalists against the use of terms including “terrorist,” “militant,” “Islamist” and “jihad.”
“One person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter,” the Al Jazeera executive wrote.
The word “extremist” was labeled off-limits. “Avoid characterizing people,” van Meek said. “Often their actions do the work for the viewer.”
“Do not use,” van Meek’s said of the term “Islamist.” He described it as “a simplistic label.”

The Guardian Debunks Paris Synagogue Siege Skeptics
As one would expect, this incident was reported as an anti-Semitic attack by many journalists on the ground–including the New York Times, which noted that the mob chanted “Death to Jews”–and was described as such by France’s Prime Minister. Yet in some corners of the media, particularly online, skeptics insisted that the entire incident had been fabricated for propaganda purposes. These critics recast the JDL who repelled the mob as instigators who provoked the entire affair, or at least misrepresented a street fight as an anti-Semitic attack. And to make their case, the skeptics cited a seemingly unimpeachable source: the synagogue’s own president, Serge Benhaim, who allegedly told an interviewer that no substantive assault had taken place. But as a recent Guardian investigation reveals, that interview has been dramatically misrepresented–and in fact states the opposite.
In a thoughtful piece titled “The Threat to France’s Jews” that is worth reading in full, Natasha Lehrer explains how agenda-driven writers distorted Benhaim’s words to help them minimize the incident’s anti-Semitic character. Lehrer first records more eyewitness testimony as to what actually transpired:
Bernard Abouaf, a journalist for the left-leaning Radio Shalom, was with friends nearby when he received a call on his mobile that the synagogue was being attacked. He rushed to the scene. “There were a hundred or so pro-Palestinian activists rushing towards the synagogue. There were 40 Jews outside defending the 160 people who were trapped inside. Let me tell you, I have never in my life defended the JDL [Jewish Defense League],” he said. “But that evening, if they hadn’t been there, the synagogue would have been destroyed, with all the people trapped inside.”
Holocaust Memorial Day: Telegraph revealed Nazi gas chambers three years before liberation of Auschwitz
It was under the headline “Germans murder 700,000 Jews in Poland”, that this newspaper reported the “greatest massacre in the world’s history” on June 25, 1942.
The story was remarkably detailed and accurate, yet the credit belongs neither to this newspaper nor the anonymous “Daily Telegraph reporter” who was the author. All the facts were supplied by Szmul Zygielbojm, a member of the Polish government in exile who made it his mission to inform the world about the Holocaust.
After arriving in London in 1942, Zygielbojm used a clandestine network of contacts across occupied Poland to gather eyewitness accounts of the fate of Jews. The particular information in The Daily Telegraph’s story was smuggled to London on microfilm hidden inside a key.
The newspaper was able to report that gas chambers were being used for industrialised murder from November 1941 onwards – and “an average 1,000 Jews were gassed daily”. The story methodically lists the death toll from massacres in seven different towns and cities.
At Holocaust memorial, Netanyahu vows to prevent Iran nuclear bomb
In an address delivered at Yad Vashem in Jerusalem on Tuesday to mark International Holocaust Remembrance Day, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed to prevent Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons.
"The ayatollahs in Iran, they deny the Holocaust while planning another genocide against our people," Netanyahu said. "Let me be clear. The Jewish people will defend themselves by themselves against any threat. That's what the Jewish state is all about."
"Yet it is the government of Israel that holds the ultimate responsibility for the security of the one and only Jewish state. And here we must speak out and must speak our mind about the dangers to our people and our state. This is something we could not do at the time of the Holocaust.
Netanyahu: The World is Still Anti-Semitic - Jews Have Changed
Netanyahu noted that Hamas's very charter calls for the genocide of Jews and the destruction of the Jewish state, portraying Israel "as the embodiment of all evil in the world" as was done by anti-Semites against individual Jews before the foundation of the modern Jewish state.
"And what do the so-called ‘enlightened’ organs of the international community do in response?" asked the prime minister. Answering his own question, he listed the various atrocities being committed in the Middle East, and noted that the Geneva Convention members, UN Human Rights Council and International Criminal Court (ICC) meet precisely to condemn Israel.
"No rational examination of the facts could justify this assault on Israel, the Middle East’s only democracy, the most beleaguered democracy on earth," he said. "This obsession with the Jewish people and their state has a name. It's called anti-Semitism."
"We will defend ourselves against Iran"
While the hatred of Jews may not have changed, "the Jews have changed," said Netanyahu. "We are no longer a stateless people endlessly searching for a safe haven. ...Today we are an independent and sovereign people in our ancestral homeland."
Exclusive Video: Ambassador Dermer Defends Israel’s Role as “Refuge” for Jews
Israeli ambassador to the United States Ron Dermer highlighted Israel’s role as refuge for every Jew in a speech delivered Sunday. Dermer noted that possibly as much as 3% of France’s Jewish population could move to Israel in 2015 and asked rhetorically, “Despite all the concerns regarding the future of French Jewry, one set of questions is not being asked today: Where will the Jews go? Who will take them in? Where can they find refuge?”
But above all else, the birth of the Jewish state should make the Jewish people grateful for three things: First, Israel gave us a voice. Second, Israel provided a refuge. Third, and most important, Israel enabled us to defend ourselves.
Now, everyone can appreciate the significance of having a refuge. For nearly seven decades, Jews fleeing oppression have found a home in Israel. They came from the killing fields of Europe, were driven out of hostile states in North Africa and the Middle East, were rescued from Ethiopia and arrived en masse when the iron curtain fell.
Today, it is the Jewish community of France that is flocking to Israel. Three years ago, 1900 French Jews made Aliyah. Two years ago, 3500 came. Last year, 7,000 came. This year, we expect 15,000 to come.
That’s nearly 3% of the French Jewish community – the equivalent of some 200,000 American Jews moving to Israel in a single year.
Irwin Cotler: The uniqueness of anti-Semitism
There is no doubt that hatred and racism must be fought in all their forms and manifestations. There are, however, six notable considerations that warrant the specificity attached to analyzing and combating anti-Semitism.
First, anti-Semitism is not only the oldest and most enduring of hatreds – one which has assumed different mutations over time – but a radical hatred that has given rise to catastrophic suffering both for Jews and for all those who are enveloped by the virus of anti-Semitism.
Second, anti-Semitism is a form of racism that has a global dimension, such that one finds it even in countries without Jews. Simply put, no other vulnerable minority is targeted globally by a racist virus that, as described in the London Declaration on Combating Anti-Semitism, not only propagates hatred against Jews, but against Israel as the Jew among the nations.
The third singular feature is that the species of racism known as anti-Semitism is characterized by widespread, state-sanctioned – indeed, state-orchestrated – incitement and hate, including incitement to genocide. Jews are the sole member of the international community who are the standing target of state sanctions and incitement to genocide on a global scale.
Fourth, no other form of racism is laundered under universal public values, notably the protective cover of the United Nations, the authority of international law, the culture of human rights, and the struggle against racism.
'Never Again' in Europe is Just a Meaningless Slogan
On the face of it, watching and reading the powerful speeches by world leaders, as well as the countless heart-rending documentaries marking the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz on International Holocaust Memorial Day yesterday, you might think not. After all, there were plenty of tears, plenty of grief, plenty of strong words, plenty of solemn pledges to "never forget" and never allow such an atrocity to occur again.
Indeed, there is no doubt that the words and the sentiments were genuine. The liberal European and other world leaders of today really do mean it when they say they are dedicated to preventing a repeat performance of the events of 1938-1945 in Europe. The problem is that that is where it ends.
"Never again"? Of course! Never again shall white European fascists be allowed to goose-step their way unchallenged to building a vast industry of genocide against Jews, gypsies and other "undesirables." Never again shall we allow the far-right to impose its twisted ideas of "racial purity" onto western society. Never again shall the West turn a blind eye to a fascist regime building huge death camps to gas millions in Europe's backyard.
But that is not what "never again" means - and if it is, it is nothing more than an empty, utterly worthless slogan.
‘France is your homeland,’ Hollande tells country’s Jews
French President Francois Hollande on Tuesday vowed to combat “unbearable” rising anti-Semitism in France, after figures showed anti-Jewish acts doubled over the past year, urging Jews to stay in France.
“France is your homeland,” Hollande said at a Holocaust memorial in Paris, vowing that the government will present “a wide-ranging plan to counter racism and anti-Semitism by the end of February.”
He spoke after the country’s main Jewish group CRIF said that anti-Semitic acts registered in France had soared to 851 in 2014, from 423 the previous year. Acts of physical violence jumped to 241 from 105.
“These anti-Semitic acts represent 51 percent of racist acts committed in France while Jews make up only one percent of the French population,” said the group in a statement.
Britain announces new Holocaust memorial
Britain will build a new Holocaust memorial in central London to which the government will contribute £50 million ($75 million), ministers said Tuesday.
The memorial will be built along with an education center in a bid to ensure that the lessons of World War II’s mass killing of Jews by the Nazis are never forgotten.
The announcement came on the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp in Poland, marked around the world each year as Holocaust Memorial Day.
There is already a Holocaust memorial in London’s Hyde Park consisting of two boulders lying in a bed of gravel inscribed with a quotation from the Book of Lamentations.
But it is thought the new memorial will be on a larger scale.
 Prince Charles Says Holocaust is Warning and Lesson for All Faiths (VIDEO)
Britain’s Prince Charles, in a speech on Tuesday at a London memorial service, described the Holocaust as a lesson to all faiths and a means to help respond to turmoil in the Middle East.
“[International] Holocaust Memorial Day is not just a memorial to those six million innocent Jewish men, women and children – it is also universal because the Jews in this story represent all of us,” he said. “That is why the Holocaust is not just a Jewish tragedy, nor merely a dark page from the Second World War, but a warning and a lesson to all of us of all faiths in all times.”
The Prince of Wales outlined the Holocaust as “an unparalleled human tragedy and an act of evil unique in history” that must always be remembered. Commemorating the suffering that victims faced, and the unspeakable actions of the “Nazis diabolical enterprise,” will help future generations “understand not just what happened across Europe, but how this came to happen.”
Obama: Paris terror attacks are painful reminder of need to fight anti-Semitism
Obama said, in a statement Tuesday, that the recent Paris terror attacks are "a painful reminder of our obligation to condemn and combat rising anti-Semitism in all its forms, including the denial or trivialization of the Holocaust."
"Honoring the victims and survivors begins with our renewed recognition of the value and dignity of each person," he said. "It demands from us the courage to protect the persecuted and speak out against bigotry and hatred."
A presidential delegation was sent to the ceremony in Poland, joining Holocaust survivors and dignitaries while in the US, "the American people pay tribute to the six million Jews and millions of others murdered by the Nazi regime."
He said the nation also honors those who survived the Shoah, "while recognizing the scars and burdens that many have carried ever since."
Top Nazi Hunter: Eastern Europe Rewrote the Holocaust
Dr. Efraim Zuroff, the head Nazi hunter at the Simon Wiesenthal Center, told Arutz Sheva on Tuesday in time for International Holocaust Memorial Day that the battle over the Holocaust lives on - and is being waged on the field of public memory.
According to Zuroff, aside from the widespread scourge of Holocaust denial, a new phenomenon has reared its head recently in eastern Europe, where there are attempts to minimize the genocidal horrors committed against the Jewish people and revise history.
"This phenomenon should worry the state of Israel and the Foreign Ministry," emphasized Zuroff. "In post-Communist eastern Europe, they're trying to play down the crimes of the Nazi cooperators and claim that the crimes of the Communists were just as bad, and that both of them committed genocide."
Zuroff elaborated "they're trying to reduce the uniqueness of the Holocaust, and even to claim that among the Communist criminals were Jews too."
David Ward Uses Holocaust Memorial Day To Bash Israel. Again
Today, he continued his fine tradition of marginalizing the Holocaust by again using the occasion to bash Israel.
Commenting David Ward MP said:
“On Holocaust Memorial Day it’s imperative that we share the memory of the millions who have been murdered in the Holocaust and subsequent genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Palestine, Bosnia and Darfur in order to challenge hatred and persecution wherever it resides today.
Sky News “remembers Auschwitz” by suggesting that Jews fuel antisemitism
Sky News reporter Adam Boulton asked Britain’s Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis three separate times if Israel causes antisemitism, during a short interview conducted on International Holocaust Memorial Day. As Boulton was interviewing Mirvis about the significance of the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, viewers saw video in the background of Palestinians in the rubble of Gaza during the summer war, under the headline: “Auschwitz remembered”.
First, in case it needs reminding, “holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel” represents a classic example of modern antisemitism.
Additionally, as Chief Rabbi Mirvis attempted to point out, the Sky News reporter got it completely backwards. It is the extreme antisemitic ideology of Hamas – whose charter calls for the murder of Jews – which continues to fuel the continued violence.
More broadly, Israel doesn’t cause antisemitism.
Rather, Israel serves as an alibi by anti-Semites to deflect the charge that they are racist towards Jews.
HMD edition of BBC One’s ‘The Big Questions’ not exempt from political propaganda
In fact, the provocative question posed in that promotion was not the “one big question” discussed in the edition of the programme broadcast on the same day as readers unable to access BBC iPlayer can see for themselves below. No less contentious than the wording of that tweet was the fact that the programme’s subject matter was allowed to be exploited for opportunistic promotion of political propaganda by Nira Yuval-Davis of the University of East London.
“And part of the problem that we see is that on the one hand we see how Israel is using – very cynically unfortunately – this very important memory of the Holocaust. […]
[…] the fact [is] that the prime minister of Israel, whenever there is a diplomatic visit, he’s taking people to Yad Vashem – the memorial museum – and in order to show them this [is] what happened to Jews in the Holocaust as a preventative measure for any critique of Israeli policies.”

To be clear, the people sitting on the front row are invited guests and like all panel members appearing on ‘The Big Questions’ they would have been ‘vetted’ by the production team before their appearance on live television. That means that Nicky Campbell and his team must have known full well that they had invited an anti-Zionist, BDS-supporting proponent of the notion of the establishment of Israel as a project of “settler-colonialism” to appear on the panel of the edition of their programme advertised as part of the BBC’s Holocaust Memorial Season.
BBC Accused of 'Race-Baiting' over Galloway Golders Green Invite
The BBC has been accused of "race-baiting" for inviting radical anti-Israel MP George Galloway to appear at a high-profile show hosted in Finchley and Golders Green, which is home to one of the largest Jewish communities in the UK.
"Question Time" sees commentators and political figures take part in a panel discussion on hot political topics, as well as fielding questions from members of the audience. Each episode is filmed in different locations around the country to allow different communities to take part.
But the decision to invite Galloway of all people to the upcoming showing - which will be based in a neighborhood with such a large Jewish population - has left some British Jews seething.
As leader of the far-left Respect Party, Galloway has been repeatedly accused of anti-Semitism for incendiary remarks and vocal opposition to any Jewish right to self-determination in Israel.
Galloway most recently hit headlines after declaring his constituency an "Israel-free zone", prompting charges of racism.
Kobi Niv Dubs All Israelis Racist, Misses Praise for Lassana Bathily
"[T]he truth is that we are a racist country, from the prime minister on down to the grassroots citizen," opines Tal Niv in an Haaretz Op-ed ("The French Muslim ignored by Israel," Jan. 23) castigating Israelis for their supposed lack of praise for Lassana Bathily, the black Muslim immigrant who saved at least six Jews during the terror attack at a Parisian kosher supermarket.
Niv claims that Israel did not give Bathily, 24, the proper respect he deserved for his courageous actions solely because he is a black Muslim. The Haaretz writer acknowledges that the Israeli press did call him a "hero," but "for a single day only." Moreover, Niv attacks Israeli government officials – and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in particular– for their supposed indifference towards Bathily:
It’s unclear how Niv makes the leap from speculating "perhaps" Netanyahu did thank Bathily to claiming that "the prime minister made no speech lauding his act." His uncertainty as to whether Netanyahu or not thanked Bathily is also surprising since both the transcript of the speech and the video (at 5:50) are easily found online.
But was the Prime Minister's gratitude only reported on an obscure Web site? It was in fact reported in every major Israeli news site, including Walla, Ynet, Channel 2 News, NRG. International papers also noted Netanyahu’s recognition of Bathily, with The Washington Post opening its report on his heroism with the line "Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu personally thanked him." (h/t Yenta Press)
Update on the BBC’s response to complaints about Willcox statement
The response goes on to explain that the ECU has summarized the editorial issues arising from all the complaints into the points below and that those points will be considered against the relevant Editorial Guidelines of accuracy, impartiality and harm and offence.
That the question put by Tim Willcox to an interviewee was misleading in that it linked the Paris killings in a kosher supermarket with events in the middle east;
That the question was offensive and anti-Semitic in that it suggested that all Jews were responsible for the actions of Israel;
That the question was offensive and anti-Semitic in that it suggested that Jews were responsible for the murder of other Jews;
That the question was offensive because it trivialised the holocaust;
That the question displayed bias against Israel;
That Tim Willcox’s comment “But you understand everything is seen from different perspectives” suggested there was a justification for the killings;
That the interviewee was not treated with appropriate respect;
That the terms of the apology from Tim Willcox were inadequate and failed to address what was inaccurate and offensive about his remarks;
That posting an apology on a private Twitter account was inadequate and that it should have been published by the BBC.
I'm thinking of quitting Britain over 'very, very depressing' recent rise in anti-Semitic attacks, says actress Maureen Lipman
Maureen Lipman has said she is contemplating leaving the UK because of the ‘worrying’ rise of attacks on Jewish people.
Mrs Lipman, 71, said the Jewish community in Britain ‘give, give and give’ and described the recent rise in anti-Semitic attacks as ‘very, very depressing’.
The actress, best known for her 1980s adverts for BT, told LBC Radio: ‘When the economy dries up they turn on the usual suspect the Jew… and when the going gets tough the Jews get packing.’
When asked if she’d considered leaving the UK, Mrs Lipman replied: ‘Yes it’s crossed my mind that it’s time to look around for another place to live.
‘One school of thought says it’s because of Israeli policy in the Middle East, it isn’t. There’s been anti-Semitism for 4,000 years.’
Last year Mrs Lipman announced she was ending five decades of support for the Labour Party, as she furiously denounced Ed Miliband’s stance on Israel.
Michael Lumish: UC Santa Cruz invites Angela Davis to Defame Israel
Dear Chancellor Blumenthal,
We represent 20 organizations with hundreds of thousands of members and supporters nationwide. We are very troubled by UCSC’s selection of Angela Davis as speaker for the 31st Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Convocation, an event sponsored by your office. Given the title of her talk -- “Racism, Militarism, Poverty: From Ferguson to Palestine” -- it is clear that Davis will use this event, intended to honor Dr. King’s memory, as an opportunity to promote her own political agenda, which includes the demonization and delegitimization of the Jewish state. Instead of choosing a speaker who could unite diverse communities, as did Martin Luther King himself, UCSC has chosen a speaker whose well-known hatred of Israel and support for efforts to harm it through antisemitic boycotts, are extraordinarily divisive and deeply offensive to many in the Jewish community.
Even more troubling, however, is the lack of sensitivity shown to those members of the Jewish community, including many UCSC Jewish alumni who have expressed to you their sincere concerns about this major event. Rather than publicly acknowledging these concerns and seeking to address the serious issues that underlie them, you issued a statement which completely ignores their concerns and simply asserts the University’s right to sponsor any event on the grounds of freedom of speech and academic freedom.
NGO Monitor: Translation of Norwegian Letter on Mads Gilbert from International Doctors
As medical doctors, we note with dismay the recognition by your newspaper of Dr. Mads Gilbert as "person of the year" for 2014. The description of Dr. Gilbert's activities is dangerously distorted, making the award highly problematic.
In particular we are concerned about his exploitation of medical frameworks for promoting a personal political agenda. As doctors, we are profoundly aware of the fundamental principle of medicine to "first do no harm", but Dr. Gilbert violates this obligation on many occasions.
In July 2014, Dr. Gilbert co-authored a highly disturbing "Open Letter for the People in Gaza" in The Lancet medical journal. Published during a very difficult war for both sides, this “letter” sought to legitimize aggression by the Hamas terror group, called for boycotts against Israel, and presented a highly distorted version of events, including erasing 4560 rockets and mortars launched against Israelis – each a war crime. The language of this letter can be seen as constituting incitement and support for violence, and was denounced by numerous physicians who opposed this exploitation of the medical profession by Dr. Gilbert and his colleagues.
The Finnish Jewish branch (KKL Finland) of the Israeli JNF organization is a central Jewish organization, and was refused entry to this year’s World Village Festival organized by Kepa, an umbrella organisation advancing multiculturalism (for almost 300 organizations) in Finland. Kepa is also funded in part by the Finnish Foreign Ministry, whose bio includes the focusing on development policy issues, as well as providing training and advice for civil society organisations (CSOs) in Finland.
Their (Kepa’s) annual budget is 6.3 million per year. The MFA has funded them 17,6 million from 2013-2015 (they have given the grant for three years at a time). Also Kepa receives money from other sources, such as membership fees etc but the MFA funding is the major source of money. So they have to make a budget for each year, and for 2013 it was 6 million. It means that almost all of their money comes from the MFA funding (3×6 = 18).
The person responsible for getting the Jewish organization banned, is none other than Syksy Räsänen, vice chairman of the Finnish branch of the anti-Israel ”Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions” (ICAHD).
Eye-tracking tech focuses on the challenge of focus
The eyes may or not be a window to the soul, but they are most definitely a window to the brain, according to Yitzi Kempinski, CEO of Jerusalem-based start-up uMoove. With the new free uHealth app, which utilizes Umoove’s unique eye-tracking technology, healthcare workers and professionals can help individuals who need to practice their focus and attention skills to keep their mind on what they are doing.
Using eye tracking game-like exercises, uHealth challenges the user’s ability to be attentive, continuously focus, follow commands and avoid distractions. The app gradually builds up these skills, and Kempinski says he’s got numbers to prove the system works.
Actually, they’re not necessarily his own numbers, “although we have been doing a lot of in-house testing of the app with individuals who suffer from attention-deficit disorder (ADD/ADHD) and the like,” said Kempinski. “But using eye tracking to diagnose even serious diseases and conditions, like stroke and concussions, is nothing new. Doctors have been doing it for years – everyone, for example, has had a doctor put a pencil in front of his face and been asked to follow its movement. But this is the first interactive tool that utilizes eye-tracking technology for therapy, and eventually it will be used for diagnosis as well.”
World’s smallest, cheapest patch pump for diabetics
The patch pumps worn by many people with diabetes are a game-changer in managing the daily infusions of insulin needed to control their chronic condition.
Now an Israeli father-son team seeks to further change the game with a significantly lower-cost and “smarter” patch pump, hoping to put the devices in reach of many more patients needing constant medication. Not only millions of diabetics of all ages, but also those with neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, would benefit.
Avi Keret of TouchéMedical stresses that he and his inventor son Amir are not reinventing the wheel, rather making it more universally accessible. “Our device gives the same amount of medication as any other pump; it just delivers the drug in a way that allows for a better quality of life,” he tells ISRAEL21c.
World’s most beautiful restaurant is in the Tel Aviv Museum
The stylish PASTEL brasserie, located in the Herta and Paul Amir Building at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, is the world’s most beautiful restaurant, according to the International Space Design Award – Idea Tops. The annual award ceremonies, held in China this year, gave PASTEL the golden nod in the Best Design of Dining Space category.
Israeli architects Alon Baranowitz and Irene Kronenberg triumphed over 4,000 architects from 35 countries in the contest.
“The restaurant was intended to form an integral part of the museum’s new wing, which features a design by Preston Scott Cohen. The building envelope is drawn into the interior, sculpting the seating area and bar, so that it seems as though PASTEL has traveled through a time tunnel and landed in the center of this space, which is richly outfitted with all the finery of a classic brasserie – upholstered booths, antique wooden flooring, a deep burgundy-colored bar, multihued marble surfaces, and Art Nouveau lighting featuring crystal and gilded metal,” reads the description of the brasserie on its homepage.

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