Thursday, July 21, 2016

From Ian:

David Collier: The day I met Islamophobia
It was the terror attack in Nice that finally made me realise what real Islamophobia is. It is the fear of silence that Islamism generates within society. Why does our ‘free press’ refuse to call a spade a spade when it comes to Islamic terror? Islamophobia.
The word is incorrectly being applied as a cover for Islamic extremism, through which any action, regardless of how violent, cannot be labelled as being related to Islam. Islam cannot have a problem. If we mention it, we become Islamophobic, we become targets for public rejection, or retribution. Who would want to place themselves in that situation?
The Muslim children at schools who are wearing a more conservative dress code because others in the school began to do so are Islamophobic. The victim of FGM or honour violence who cower in silence in fear of further action from a family member, they are Islamophobic too. The Israeli who cannot identify as Israeli at university, the Jew who will not publicly wear a Kippa, all Islamophobes.
Our teachers, our local politicians, our unions, our universities, they all suffer from Islamophobia. The woman in Nice is Islamophobic, not because she is biased against Muslims, but because the right to air her opinions has clearly been stifled through the effect of radical Islamic threats and violence.
If you cannot stand up and suggest there are deep rooted issue within Islam that need reform, if you cannot stand by those like Quilliam who seek that reform, if you cannot directly state the connection between the terror attack and Islam, then you too are suffering from Islamophobia.
NGO Monitor: NGO Influence on the House of Lords "Library Note" (withdrawn) on Palestinian Children
In July 2016, the UK House of Lords Library posted a briefing paper: “Living Conditions, Health and Wellbeing of Palestinian Children,” which was “withdrawn” without explanation on July 19, but is available on unofficial websites. The authors present a narrative of Palestinian suffering as a result of Israeli security policies, without examining the means available to protect Israeli civilians from Gaza-launched rocket barrages and terrorist attacks. In addition, the role that Palestinian violence, corruption, and mismanagement contribute to the wellbeing of Palestinian children is ignored, as is the widespread exploitation of children (child soldiers) for attacks against Israelis.
This narrative reflects an ongoing, multiyear political campaign in which political advocacy NGOs (non-governmental organizations) are central participants. The objective is to demonize Israel by alleging abuse of Palestinian children.
The withdrawn House of Lords library note promoting this agenda is a prime example, relying heavily on publications from UN agencies and media platforms that largely cite NGOs to make their claims. These NGOs are highly politicized and biased, lack credibility, and suffer from basic and documented methodological flaws.
For example, the note repeats the entirely unverified allegation of Defence for Children International- Palestine Section (DCI-PS) that “detained children were subject to physical violence” and “interrogators used position abuse, threats, and isolation to coerce confessions.”
Commemorating the 40th anniversary of Israel's July 1976 Raid on Entebbe: The State of Israel ensures that "Never Again" remains a reality
Seventy years ago, in the wake of the Holocaust, the Jewish people took a vow: Never Again!
After the Nazis murdered six million Jews, we came to recognize that we only have ourselves to rely upon for our defense. In today's tumultuous world, the sole guarantor of Jewish safety is a strong Israeli military. Jews around the world facing mortal danger can count on the State of Israel to protect them.
This year commemorates the 40th anniversary of the July 1976 Raid on Entebbe, when Israel demonstrated what Never Again really means. After an Air France plane with about 300 passengers traveling from Israel to France was hijacked by terrorists and brought to Uganda, the Israeli and Jewish passengers went through a Nazi-like selection process and were kept as hostages while the non-Jews were set free to return to Paris.
The terrorists declared that they would kill all the hostages if their demand for the release of 53 international terrorists, held in Israel and other countries, was not met. Yet it was only the State of Israel that chose to take action and save the Jewish captives. Israel refused to accept the execution of Jews by the terrorists, and in a daring and carefully planned mission, Israeli forces used four American Hercules C-130 cargo planes, travelled 2,400 miles and rescued the hostages. One IDF officer, Lieutenant Colonel Yoni Netanyahu, brother of current Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and three hostages were killed. More than 100 were saved.
But this is not the only time in recent history that only the people of Israel were willing to put their own lives in harm's way to protect their brothers and sisters in other parts of the world. After a lethal pogrom in Yemen in 1947 after the U.N. vote to partition the British Mandate of Palestine, Israel secretly airlifted 45,000 Yemenite Jews to safety in Israel with Operation Magic Carpet. And again with Operation Solomon in 1991, the IDF airlifted 14,500 Ethiopian Jews out of harm's way in Africa to Israel. With these incredible rescue missions, Israel has made it clear that it will do whatever it takes to protect global Jewry.

Female IDF Paramedics Who Treat Syria's Wounded
The IDF treats hundreds of Syrians wounded in the bloody ongoing civil war in that country; Two of the women who treat them when they first arrive at the border - Sgt. Rotem Einav and 2nd Lt. Leshem Shirgaouker describe the wounded they've seen, and the thrill of saving a life; Sgt. Einav - 'I wasn't trained to treat Israelis, Jews, or Syrians. I was trained to treat people'
Sgt. Rotem Einav is a paramedic who has been with the 474 brigade on the Golan Heights for the past five months with the IDF Medical Corps. In that time, she has treated over 100 Syrians injured in the Syrian Civil War.
The IDF Medical Corps are the ones who come to the border to give these wounded Syrians first aid, many times saving their lives. They are then put on an ambulance and sent to one of the hospitals in Israel.
While the IDF established a field hospital on the Syrian border during the bloodiest days of the civil war, it closed two years ago. Yet the flow of injured Syrians continues – every day people injured in the fighting between the rebels and the Syrian regime come to the border, some of them in life threatening conditions. The IDF medical personnel also see off the Syrians as they return to Syria – healed, and on their own two feet.
"If they arrive conscious and are able to speak to me, I try to ask them about their condition," said Sgt. Einav
"We also have interpreters who help us with the Arabic to ask them what happened in order to understand how they got injured. If they arrive unconscious, we don't have any information, just what we see. In a trauma situation like this, you have to assume that the person who is injured can have anything wrong with them, and then you determine what's wrong with them via the process of elimination."
Al-Qaeda said to urge attacks on Israeli athletes at Rio games
The al-Qaeda jihadist group has reportedly issued a directive urging its followers to carry out lone wolf attacks against Israeli athletes at the upcoming Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
According to exchanges on social media obtained by The Foreign Desk website, jihadis are urged to target individual competitors from the US, UK, France and Israel, using knives, poison, explosives-laden drones and kidnappings.
“One small knife attack against Americans/Israelis in these places will have bigger media effect than any other attacks anywhere else, God willing,” one message read.
One post suggested pouring oil on roads near Olympic host venues in order to “see Israeli Jews flying with their vehicle by the will of Allah.”
Would-be attackers were assured that obtaining a visa to Brazil is relatively easy, and that guns are widely available in Rio’s “crime-ridden slums,” the report said.
Don’t Forget, or Deny, Hizbullah’s Brutal Crimes
For the victims of Hezbollah terrorism, this week is a painful one. While the world was focused on horrifying attacks in France, Germany and across the Middle East, a grim anniversary on July 18th went little noticed.
In 1994, Hezbollah carried out the suicide truck bombing of the AMIA Jewish community centre in Buenos Aires, killing 85 and wounding 300 people. Eighteen years later, the group struck again, this time blowing up a busload of Israeli tourists at the airport in Burgas, Bulgaria, killing seven and wounding 32 others. Despite overwhelming evidence, Hezbollah has denied responsibility for these (and many other) attacks. It is a common tactic employed by the group: engage in acts of terrorism and militancy, and then deny involvement no matter what the evidence hoping people will eventually believe you.
But few do.
It took many years, but Argentinean investigators ultimately released a series of reports documenting Iran and Hezbollah’s roles in the AMIA bombing in excruciating detail. And in the wake of the Burgas bombing, the EU designated the military and terrorist wings of Hezbollah as terrorist entities. This week, the Bulgarian government announced the public indictment (in absentia) of two of the accused Hezbollah attackers, Meliad Farah, an Australian, and Hassan El Hajj Hassan, a Canadian, both of Lebanese origin and now believed to be in Lebanon.
We’ve seen this pattern before. In 2009, Hezbollah was under pressure from the international community, via accusations of terrorism worldwide and political assassinations in Lebanon. Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah denounced the international initiatives, insinuating that these accusations were Israeli machinations. Nasrallah claimed that Israelis were “working to make the whole international community against Hezbollah … to present Hezbollah as a terrorist group according to the international community and all world states.”
London's Muslim Mayor Refuses To Support Ban On Hezbollah Terror Group
London’s new and first Muslim mayor Sadiq Khan has refused to back a request for the terrorist outfit Hezbollah to be a proscribed organisation.
Following a question from UK Independence Party (UKIP) London Assembly member David Kurten, Mr. Khan said that he would not back a ban on the group which has recently had supporters and sympathisers protesting with its famous yellow jihadi flag at ‘Al Quds Day’ in London.
Mr. Kurten asked the question in the discussion following Assembly member Kemi Badenoch’s question: “What action is the Metropolitan Police Service taking against the use of flags representing designated terrorist organisations as seen during the recent al-Quds Day march in London on July 3rd?”
While Mr. Khan said he understood “the concerns of the Jewish community, and the distress these flags cause many Londoners”, he also said “It would not be appropriate… to comment on an ongoing police investigation” and that he would not commit to pushing for a ban on the “political wing” of Hezbollah.
British-Jewish Leaders Call on Government to Adopt Definition of Antisemitism That Includes Israel-Hatred
Jewish leaders in Britain last week called on the government to adopt a new working definition of antisemitism — which makes provisions for anti-Zionism — in a united move aimed at combating rising Jew-hatred in the UK.
In testimony before the Parliamentary Home Affairs Committee on its investigation into antisemitism, Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis and Sir Mick Davis, chairman of the umbrella group Jewish Leadership Council (JLC) — which represents 32 major British organizations — urged Parliament to adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of antisemitism.
“I would love it if this group referred to the European Union Monitoring Centre (EUMC) definition, linked to the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s definition, as the guideline. This is what we would like everybody to follow. This is how we want authorities to apply the rules for anyone who steps out of line,” Mirvis stated.
“It is my position, as well as that of the Jewish Leadership Council and the Community Security Trust, the British Jewish community’s authoritative voice on antisemitsim and community security, that this committee uses the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s definition of antisemitism as its guide as well,” Davis stated in his written testimony.
Cornel West rips 'vicious Israeli occupation' outside of RNC
Former Princeton professor and Sanders campaign adviser Cornel West spoke to reporters during a protest against the Republican National Convention in Cleveland on Tuesday, praising the “struggle against Israeli occupation” and condemning “Jewish reactionaries” supporting the candidacy of Donald Trump.
West, an outspoken critic of Israel, was appointed by the Sanders campaign to the Democratic National Convention’s platform committee, where he, along with fellow Sanders-appointee James Zogby, worked to shift the Democratic Party’s agenda away from support for Israel.
Speaking on Tuesday, West demanded an end to the “Israeli occupation”, comparing the struggle to the fight against the Vietnam War by the radical left in the 1960s and early 1970s, and the campaign against apartheid-ridden South Africa in the 1980s.
“Palestinians need to know that there are Americans in this nation, including American Jewish brothers and sisters, who love them, who are committed to their struggle against Israeli occupation and are concerned about them being able to live lives of decency and dignity. And there’s a growing number of young people - the Israeli occupation today for the younger generation is what Vietnam was for my generation and what South Africa was for the 80s and that includes precious young Jewish brothers and sisters as well as blacks and others.”
West added that Arabs living in the Palestinian Authority and members of the Black Lives Matter movement could “all learn from each other”. (h/t vwVwwVwv)
Will anti-Israel academic boycotters now also boycott Turkish universities?
It was one of the most notorious statements of the academic boycott movement against Israel.
Shortly after the American Studies Association adopted the academic boycott of Israel in December 2013, and a firestorm of condemnation by University Presidents and associations erupted, then ASA President Curtis Marez justified singling out Israel because “one has to start somewhere”:
The American Studies Association has never before called for an academic boycott of any nation’s universities, said Curtis Marez, the group’s president and an associate professor of ethnic studies at the University of California, San Diego. He did not dispute that many nations, including many of Israel’s neighbors, are generally judged to have human rights records that are worse than Israel’s, or comparable, but he said, “one has to start somewhere.”
In that single phrase, “one has to start somewhere,” was the hypocrisy and essential anti-Semitism of the BDS academic boycott movement laid bare.
Countries with far worse human rights records and academic freedom abuses were ignored while the only majority-Jewish state in the world was singled out. How else could the boycotters justify ignoring horrible abuses in majority-Muslim countries except to suggest that the boycotters would get around to them in due time after taking care of the Jewish one.
History Channel Removes Tendentious Wording About Einstein and Israel
On July 11, the History Channel reaffirmed its commitment to accuracy and truth by revising its “Albert Einstein: Fact or Fiction?” webpage to replace erroneous wording tending to negatively portray Israel: “Though he (Albert Einstein) was very sympathetic to Israel, he was never an ardent Zionist — he believed in ‘friendly and fruitful’ cooperation between Jews and Arabs.”
There were two problems here: the erroneous characterization of Einstein’s attitude toward Zionism, and the erroneous implication that Zionism and Israel from the outset did not believe in cooperation between Arabs and Jews.
The History Channel’s revised wording reads, “Einstein was, however, very sympathetic to Israel. In 1947 he expressed his belief in Zionism as well as the importance of ‘friendly and fruitful’ cooperation between Jews and Arabs.” The case for revision was made by the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA) in correspondence with Kimberly Gilmore, the network’s historian and director of corporate outreach.
Brazilian journalist who called Israel a 'Nazi state' loses suit
The umbrella Jewish organization in Sao Paulo, Brazil, won a nearly decade-long indemnity lawsuit started by a journalist who claimed he was gagged for calling Israel a "Nazi state."
The Sao Paulo Jewish federation announced the court victory on Monday in the 2007 suit by Gilson Gondim, a columnist for the Jornal da Paraiba newspaper.
Gondim claimed the Sao Paulo Jewish federation triggered a campaign to damage his reputation, resulting in the shutdown of his columns. The federation had won in the lower court and Gondim lost in his appeals. In June, a new appeal was denied.
"We are always alert to anti-Semitic expressions and take the appropriate actions in order to avoid the proliferation of this type of discrimination," the Sao Paulo Jewish federation's executive president, Ricardo Berkiensztat, told JTA.
"We hope cases like this will prevent attitudes that can intimidate and threaten the Jewish community and show those who perpetrate them will be compelled to come before a Brazilian court to respond."
In 2006, Gondim published an article in which he called Israel a "Nazi state" in a reference to the retaliation following the kidnapping of two soldiers by Hezbollah.
'Who You Callin' a Human Shield?'
The Post does not say who believed as many as 90,000 people were trapped in Fallujah or that the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria planned to use them as human shields. However, based on past actions by the group, the description no doubt seemed probable.
Hamas in the Gaza Strip and Hezbollah in Lebanon long have used the populations they claim to represent but daily intimidate as human shields in their “resistance” to Israel. In reporting non-combatant casualties resulting from Israeli counter-attacks against Hamas and Hezbollah, news media sometimes note Israel’s charges that the two terrorist organizations were hiding behind human shields. They have been less likely to report, in their own words and accurately, that the two Islamic fundamentalist movements did just that.
It’s worth noting Washington Post usage in this case, and keeping it mind the next time the press deals with civilian casualties among populations ruled by Hamas and Hezbollah as a result of Israeli responses to the groups’ aggressions. What’s good for ISIS ought to be good for them too.
It’s also worth recalling that using human shields, and attacking other non-combatant population from among them, is a double violation of international law and ought to be reported as such.
Al Jazeera America Failed, But Qatar Still Has AJ+
A Producer's Terrorism Apologia
Why would AJ+ turn to such an extremist? And why would it manipulate its audience when discussing the Temple Mount and the West Bank’s water shortage? Part of the reason may be because Dena Takruri, a producer at AJ+ involved in the broadcaster’s Israel-related content, is herself an extreme anti-Israel activist who has seemed to justify anti-Israel terrorism.
Takruri, for example, rationalized the 2014 murder of three Israeli teenagers and other Palestinian attacks on Israeli civilians, writing in relation to that attack that "resistance is not terrorism."
Takruri’s reports about Israel are something of a junkyard of inaccurate statements that have been corrected by more responsible media organizations. She repeatedly refers to Israel’s presence in the West Bank as an "illegal" occupation, a characterization rejected by international legal experts, including some who are not particularly sympathetic to Israel. The New York Times published two corrections over the past year after publishing similar statements.
Likewise, Takruri devoted promoted a discredited, mislabeled, and misleading graphic purporting to show maps of a "disappearing Palestine." After broadcasting the graphic, MSNBC reporters apologized and acknowledged the images were "not factually accurate." Similarly, publisher McGraw-Hill withdrew a textbook containing the maps because, as a statement by the publisher explained, an internal review "determined that the map did not meet our academic standards." AJ+ standards are another matter.
IsraellyCool: AJ+ Has People Buzzing With Latest Propaganda Video
AJ+, the online news and current events channel run by Al Jizz, put out many propaganda videos, most of which have me shaking my head. None more so than this one.
Ah yes. Those poor Gazans resorting to getting stung by bees because of those evil Jooooos! Talk about putting salt in to the wounds (or should that be honey?)
But let’s take the sting out of these lies for a second.
For a start, Israel allows medical equipment and medicines into Gaza, and even allows Gazans to enter Israel for medical treatment, when those treatments are unable to be administered in the Strip. Which apparently does not include bee sting therapy.
Then there’s the small matter of Hamas siphoning off money from all the billions being poured into Gaza, for their rocket-building and tunnel construction shenanigans (among other things). Had they used this money for civilian infrastructure, then perhaps people would not be lining up to be stung by bees.
And let’s not forget Hamas using actual hospitals as command centers.
Casually reinforcing the narrative on BBC Radio 4
Kate Adie’s introduction to an item about rock-climbing which was broadcast in the July 16th edition of BBC Radio 4’s ‘From Our Own Correspondent’ sounded promising.
“In sixty years this programme has broadcast many dispatches from the Middle East – particularly the West Bank. They’re often about religion or politics and all too often about violence. Many journalists have written about the scene in Ramallah; just six miles from Jerusalem. But Ed Lewis has found something different: a sports centre that’s opening up new horizons.”
So was that item about a Palestinian rock-climbing club really “something different” and did it indeed manage to avoid politics? Not quite.
Tourism consultant and freelance journalist Edward Lewis managed to get a gratuitous, context-free mention of Israel’s anti-terrorist fence into his introduction – but without of course informing listeners why the construction of that fence (only a small percentage of which is actually “wall”) was necessary.
Despite conflicting claims, Daily Mail pronounces Israel guilty of killing Palestinian boy
The first sign the Daily Mail decided, despite conflicting claims and a dearth of evidence, to immediately pronounce Israel guilty of murdering a 12-year-old Palestinian boy is in the sensational headline:
Note that editors evidently felt they didn’t need to use ‘scare quotes’ or any language indicating that these are only Palestinian charges at this point that have not yet been proven and have indeed been denied by Israeli officials.
The opening passages continues in the same pattern of extremely tendentious reporting:
Huge crowds carried the body of a Palestinian boy killed by a rubber bullet during a clash with Israeli troops to his funeral today. Muhey al-Tabakhi, 12, got caught up in the violence in the occupied West Bank on the outskirts of Jerusalem in Al-Ram. He died in a Palestinian hospital of a wound inflicted by the bullet that struck his chest and caused heart failure.
Why BBC audiences won’t understand the next Israel-Hizballah conflict – part one
However, he made no effort to inform audiences of the very relevant differences between a country obliged to defend its citizens from attacks by an internationally designated terrorist organization (and predictably, that terminology does not appear anywhere in this report) based in a neighbouring country and the religiously motivated ideology which drives both Hizballah and its Iranian sponsors.
Those Iranian sponsors were also conspicuously absent from Ruhayem’s description of Hizballah’s entry into the war in Syria – which he presented as just having ‘broken out’ without any mention of Bashar Assad’s brutal attempts to suppress civil protest against his regime.
“But war broke out in Syria and Hizballah sent its fighters to support the Syrian regime.”
Ruhayem also promoted the popular – but inaccurate – BBC theme according to which Hizballah’s origins are to be found in the First Lebanon War.
“The history between Israel and Hizballah dates back further than 2006. A museum set up by Hizballah in southern Lebanon showcases remnants of Israel’s occupation. […] It’s meant to document the part of Hizballah’s war against the Israeli occupation; a war which slowly but surely exhausted the Israelis and drove them out of the south.
Why BBC audiences won’t understand the next Israel-Hizballah conflict – part two
As noted in part one of this post the BBC’s correspondent in Beirut, Rami Ruhayem, produced both audio and written reports on the tenth anniversary of the Second Lebanon War on July 12th.
The written report – which appeared in the ‘Features’ section of the BBC News website’s Middle East page – is titled “Ten years on, is Hezbollah prepared for another war with Israel?” and it opened with the use of euphemistic terminology to describe that internationally designated terror organisation and further promotion of the questionable ‘mutual deterrence’ theme found in Ruhayem’s radio report. [emphasis added]Ruhayem written 12 7
“In a region transformed by the wars in Syria and Iraq, the stand-off between Israel and Hezbollah, the Shia jihadist group it last confronted in full-scale warfare in 2006, appears to be one thing that has not changed.
Ten years is the longest period without major fighting between them – a sign, perhaps, that the mutual deterrence established after 2006 is here to stay.”
It went on to amplify unfounded rumour disseminated by a pro-Hizballah Lebanese newspaper.
“But earlier this year, rumour spread in Lebanon that Israel was preparing to attack and finish off Hezbollah, sparking media speculation that the summer of 2016 will see an even bloodier re-run of the war of 2006.”
Jew-Hate? In a Canadian Arab Language Newspaper? I'm Shocked, Shocked, I Say!
This one, from B'nai Brith Canada, came through the transom today:
An article appearing in a monthly Arabic newspaper distributed in London, Ont. engages in virulent antisemitism, Holocaust denial and homophobia, B’nai Brith Canada has discovered.
Al-Saraha, the newspaper that published the article, is recommended as a news outlet for new immigrants by the London and Middlesex Local Immigration Partnership, an official agency funded by the Government of Ontario.
Entitled “The Question Which Everyone Ignores: Why Did Hitler Kill the Jews?,” the article begins by denying that 6-million Jews were murdered during the Holocaust, claiming instead that “Jewish propaganda managed to spread [this number] and establish it.” It continues by falsely asserting that “the Jews caused most of the economic collapses that occurred in the banks in the period between 1870 and 1920.”
In more lurid detail, the piece asserts that “The first theatres of homosexuality appeared in Berlin in the 1920’s, and the first presentations of pornography appeared in 1880 and 1890 by the hands of Jewish authors”. It concludes by claiming that Adolf Hitler created 6-million new jobs upon his rise to power in 1933, and that this is the source of the “Jewish propaganda” figure of 6-million Jewish casualties in the Holocaust.
Ukrainian Holocaust Perpetrators Are Being Honored in Place of Their Victims
The memory of Bulba-Borovets and his Sich has figured prominently in Olevsk and regional politics over the past five years. In the city of Rivne there are plans to build a new monument for Bulba-Borovets—commander of the Sich, not to mention this summer’s bike race named after the Sich. Olevsk itself has more plans, including: naming a park after the Olevsk Republic or Bulba-Borovets; naming a square after Bulba-Borovets; and creating an exposition about the Sich in a local museum (with plans to build a separate museum in the future). There have celebrations of the Sich throughout the Volhynia region this summer. Moreover, the Sich force has caught the interest of the Ukrainian parliament, the Verkhovna Rada. This past April it passed a resolution to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the founding of Poliska Sich.
This development on the national stage should come as no surprise to anyone following the Poroshenko government’s divisive policies on historical memory. The driving force of this policy of whitewashing nationalist activities during the war is the Institute of National Memory led by nationalist activist Volodymyr Viatrovych who believes the OUN-UPA only saved Jews during the war and did not participate in any pogroms. These ideas are being realized quickly: a monument to pogrom leaders has been unveiled in Uman; a Ukrainian nationalist pogrom leader—and importantly, decorated Wehrmacht soldier who aided the Germans in suppressing the Warsaw uprising—Petro Diachenko, was celebrated by the Rada last year; and the Kyiv city government just voted to name a street after far right-wing nationalist leader, Stepan Bandera, to name a few initiatives. “Decommunization” and the invocation of Western or European values serve as cover for this nationalist memory manipulation.
There has been too little debate about these policies in Ukraine. Ironically, many Ukrainians might believe that Bulba-Borovets and his Sich offer a safe choice for memorialization because they are traditionally considered less radical than competing nationalists. But they would be wrong. The Jews of Olevsk, tortured and tormented throughout the summer of 1941, and eventually shot by the Germans and the Sich together, deserve to have their voices heard before new monuments are raised in honor of those who killed them. If the Ukrainian government is so keen on building new memorials, I would suggest one at the Ubort river that lists the names of the murdered, why they were killed, and by whom.
Polish officials under fire for revisionism of Holocaust history
Several Jewish organizations condemned recent statements by Polish officials, which the critics deemed detrimental to historical accuracy on the Holocaust and World War II.
The Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia last week took aim at Polish Defense Minister Antoni Macierewicz, for telling TVP that Russians were actually behind the mass killing of Jews and Poles that mainstream historians attribute to Ukrainian nationalists and Nazi forces.
The statement by Macierewicz, who has a history of making statements viewed as anti-Semitic, comes amid other controversies surrounding allegedly revisionist statements by Polish Education Minister Anna Zalewska and other officials on the historical record of Jedwabne — a town where Poles killed hundreds of Jews in 1941.
Jaroslaw Szarek, the newly-elected president of the Polish state’s Institute of National Remembrance, recently told a parliamentary committee that, “the perpetrators of this crime were the Germans, who used in their own machine of terror a group of Poles.”
His own institution is on record as saying the act was perpetrated by Poles, though two historians from the same institution recently said an exhumation was necessary to determine what happened in Jedwabne. One of them, a deputy director, said Poles who killed Jews at Jedwabne were avenging Jewish mobilization to oppress ethnic Poles during the occupation of Poland’s east by the Soviet Union from 1939-1941.
Stamford Hill: Boy made to pay £20 for putting lit fireworks into the pockets of Jewish people
Community leaders in Stamford Hill have slammed the "disturbingly light" sentence given to a 14-year-old boy who placed lit fireworks in the pockets of Jewish pedestrians.
The teen was ordered to pay £20 after he was dealt with by Hackney Youth Offender Panel after he was arrested on suspicion of racially aggravated common assault in January.
The victims managed to escape without injury, and the boy was detained in Dunsmure Road by volunteer neighbourhood watch group Shomrim in Hackney, who alerted police.
Following the sentencing, Moshe Monitz, Supervisor at Stamford Hill Shomrim, said the fine sent out "the wrong message to victims", and called for tougher sentencing on hate crimes.
An Italian doctor explains “Syndrome K,” the fake disease he invented to save Jews from the Nazis
In the fall of 1943, German soldiers in Italy began rounding up Italian Jews and deporting them—10,000 people were sent to concentration camps during the nearly two-year Nazi occupation. Most never returned. But in Rome, a group of doctors saved at least 20 Jews from a similar fate, by diagnosing them with Syndrome K, a deadly, disfiguring, and contagiosissima disease.
The 450-year-old Fatebenefratelli Hospital is nestled on a tiny island in the middle of Rome’s Tiber River, just across from the Jewish Ghetto. When Nazis raided the area on Oct. 16, 1943, a handful of Jews fled to the Catholic hospital, where they were quickly given case files reading “Syndrome K.”
The disease did not exist in any medical textbook or physician’s chart. In fact, it didn’t exist at all. It was a codename invented by doctor and anti-fascist activist Adriano Ossicini, to help distinguish between real patients and healthy hideaways. (Political dissidents and a revolutionary underground radio station were also sheltered there from Italy’s Fascist regime.)
The fake illness was vividly imagined: Rooms holding “Syndrome K” sufferers were designated as dangerously infectious—dissuading Nazi inspectors from entering—and Jewish children were instructed to cough, in imitation of tuberculosis, when soldiers passed through the hospital.
UK-based company said set to buy Keter Plastics for $1.7 billion
A deal for London-based BC Partners to buy the Keter Plastics empire is reportedly in the final stages of completion, with a final price said set at a whopping $1.7 billion.
Under the sale, some 80% of the company has been purchased by BC Partners, which beat out a joint venture of CVC Capital Partners and Goldman Sachs in a bidding war, according to Israeli and international media sources.
“BC Partners has won exclusivity and is discussing the acquisition of a majority stake. The deal values the business at close to $1.6 billion,” a source told Reuters on Wednesday.
BC Partners is a private equity firm operating from London, Paris, Hamburg and New York and specializing in European buyouts and acquisitions. It has also bought a number of US companies.
Israel’s largest-ever Olympic delegation heads to Rio
Rhythmic gymnast Neta Rivkin will hold Israel’s blue-and-white flag aloft at the opening ceremony of the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, to be held August 5 to 21.
The Olympic delegation that will be led into the stadium by Rivkin is Israel’s largest one since the country’s first Olympic Games in 1952. The 50 qualifiers will compete in 17 sport categories, including Israel’s first Olympic competitors in golf, triathlon and mountain biking.
Rivkin, who finished seventh in her category at the 2012 London Games, is one of 11 repeat Olympic athletes from Israel who are hoping for a spot on the medalists’ podium.
She tells ISRAEL21c that she will focus on doing her personal best at Rio. “Now I’m in the Baku World Cup,” she texted from Azerbaijan on July 20.
The architecture of Palestine during the British Mandate
“Social Construction,” a new exhibit at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem running through December 31, 2016, puts a spotlight on the “white architecture” that early 20th century European modernists imported to pre-state Palestine – and the social values this style reflects.
Curator Oren Sagiv gathered roughly 40 analytical and interpretive drawings together with more than 60 archival photographs of some of the iconic architectural projects built between 1930 and 1940 during the time of the British Mandate.
Of course, Tel Aviv is nicknamed the White City for its unrivalled abundance of these simple white, rounded buildings designed in what is known as the Bauhaus or International style. But they’re found in large numbers also in Jerusalem and Haifa.
“Social Construction” shows how the development of these urban centers “emerged from the influence of international modernism while forming a unique architectural language inspired by the ambitions to establish a new state and to create a new social order,” according to the museum.
Tomorrowland makes Israeli debut
The Tomorrowland Festival makes its Israeli debut on July 23 in Jerusalem with local and international artists behind the decks. One of the biggest electronic music festivals held in the world, the international electronic dance fest is leaving its Belgian borders and expanding to Mexico, India, Japan, Colombia, Germany, South Africa and Israel.
The Tomorrowland Main Stage is located in Belgium – and has been since 2005. This year, a live video connection will be made between Tomorrowland (Belgium) and Mexico, India, Japan, Colombia, Germany, South Africa and Israel. The 2016 global event is called, UNITE – The Mirror to Tomorrowland.
The Israeli party – running from 7 pm to 4 am — is set to attract hundreds of partygoers to the Payis Jerusalem Arena with live DJ sets from Fedde Le Grand, Tomer Maizner and Dor Dekel, Nicky Romero, Afrojack, Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike and Axwell & Ingrosso. The special effects, pyro and CO2 machines that will be synced with the Tomorrowland Main Stage in Belgium.
Lead Guitarist of British Rock Band Queen Asks Adam Lambert to Sing in Hebrew During Upcoming Israel Concert
The famed lead guitarist of British rock band Queen, Brian May, encouraged Jewish singer-songwriter Adam Lambert to perform in Hebrew during their upcoming joint concert in Israel, an entertainment industry advocacy organization reported on Tuesday.
During a recent interview with Israeli television personality Assi Azar, May was played a 2005 video of Lambert singing the popular song Shir L’Shalom, (Song for Peace). May was so impressed by Lambert’s singing of the Hebrew track that he told the American singer, “We have to do that. Let’s do it! Put it in the show.”
“Listen to that voice, wow. That’s amazing…that’s a voice in a billion,” May added in the video interview, which was re-posted on Facebook by Creative Community for Peace (CCFP).
Lambert and Queen will perform at Tel Aviv’s Park Hayarkon on Sept. 12. Lambert, who has never been to Israel before, said he is “really, really thrilled” for the upcoming visit. “I’ve been seeing on Twitter for the past six, seven years, people from Tel Aviv saying, ‘Oh, when are you coming?’,” he said. “I’m excited to go to an area of the world that I’ve never been to. I always like going to discover new things, and see new places and meet new fans.”
James Caan tours Israel
Hollywood actor James Caan – best known for his role in The Godfather as hot-tempered Sonny Corleone – is in Israel on a five-day visit.
Caan posed for the cameras at the Western Wall this morning, wrapping teffilin (phylacteries) and placing a note in the cracks of the ancient stones.
Caan, the son of German Jewish immigrants to the US, is in Israel as a guest of the Ministry of Tourism and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
His short visit will include a meeting with Israeli university students and faculty, a visit to a special IDF unit, and taking a flight above the country’s skyline.
Caan will also dine at some of the country’s best culinary hot spots and visit award-winning wineries.

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