Thursday, August 15, 2019

From Ian:

No, the United Nations Didn’t Create Israel
Hanan Ashwari, a member of the PLO Executive Committee, recently restated one of her favorite falsehoods about the creation of Israel. This falsehood — ironically often advanced by both Israel’s supporters and its enemies — holds that Israel was created by the United Nations in its Palestine Partition Resolution 181, passed on November 29, 1947, and implemented by Great Britain’s withdrawal on May 14, 1948.

This is a pernicious lie that portrays Israel as existing simply as a result of “the kindness of strangers” and as a foreign body imposed on the region by outside forces.

In fact, Jews have yearned and struggled to return to their ancestral homeland for three millennia. Zionism began as a movement in 1897, when Jews began to resettle in what was then called Palestine, culminating in Israel’s Declaration of Independence in 1948 on the same day that Great Britain left.

Those dates in 1947 and 1948 were momentous events in the Zionist effort to create a Jewish nation in its indigenous land, and are celebrated annually in Israel and among most Diaspora Jews. But November 29 — the date of the UN General Assembly vote to recommend the partition of Palestine — is, appropriately, not an Israeli holiday. But May 14 — or its equivalent date on the Jewish calendar — is feted as Israel’s Independence Day.

In any event, the UN Palestine partition is of merely symbolic value in explaining Israel’s creation.
The Waters Were Already Muddy: A Rebuttal to Victor Kattan
On 3 July 2019, we submitted a communication to the Office of the Prosecutor (“OTP”) of the International Criminal Court (“ICC”) (summarised here) which argued that Palestine’s objective legal status as a non-State entity, as well as Palestine’s indeterminate sovereign territorial claim, operate as barriers to the exercise of ICC jurisdiction in potential cases. On 9 August, Victor Kattan responded on these pages (here and here) by suggesting that our communication constitutes an attempt to “muddy the waters” and that Palestine’s objective legal status as a State is clear, as is its sovereign territory. Mr Kattan’s suggestion of bad faith is regrettable. Rather than demonstrate the clarity of Palestine’s status or territory, his posts further demonstrate their uncertainty.

Mr Kattan asserts that “only Palestine has sovereign legal title to the territories occupied by Israel in June 1967” and argues that to assert an Israeli claim in this territory makes “a complete mockery of the law of occupation”. Yet Mr Kattan’s argument relies on inconsistent and unsustainable legal and historical claims. Mr Kattan firstly claims that General Assembly Resolution 181(II) of 29 November 1947 is of dispositive effect. Secondly, he asserts that Israel waived its territorial claim to West Bank territory between 1949 and 1967. Thirdly, he appears to claim that following Jordan’s occupation of the West Bank between 1949 and 1967, a Palestinian State seceded from Jordan in the West Bank. This rebuttal considers these three dubious claims in more detail.

The effect of General Assembly Resolution 181(II)

Mr Kattan argues that the 1947 UN Partition Plan contained in Resolution 181(II)“represented a special agreement between the United Nations and the Mandatory Power” which was of dispositive effect. Yet it is trite that General Assembly resolutions are generally not binding and, in its own terms, Resolution 181(II) “recommended”its adoption and implementation to the UK (as Mandatory Power) and to UN Member States. It was not an agreement between them. Resolution 181(II) was, of course, vigorously rejected by Arab States who stated an objective to create a “United State of Palestine” throughout the former Mandate territory.

Mr Kattan nevertheless relies on Lausanne Protocol of 1949 to support his argument with respect to Resolution 181(II)’s supposedly dispositive effect, as well as to Israel’s supposed waiver of claims to West Bank territory in 1949. Yet the Lausanne Protocol, in its own terms, was a “working document… to be taken as a basis for discussions.” It was a “proposal” which would “bear upon the territorial adjustments necessary” for its “objectives” to be satisfied. At the Lausanne negotiations, Israel contemplated a land for peace formula and expressly excluded Jerusalem from the negotiations (see UN doc. A/927, 21 June 1949, paras. 28, 30). It is plainly wrong for Mr Kattan to suggest that the Protocol conferred a binding effect through agreement on the 1947 UN plan.
Myths and Facts: Palestine is a geographical area, not a nationality
Historically, before the Arabs fabricated the concept of Palestinian peoplehood as an exclusively Arab phenomenon, no such group existed. This is substantiated in countless official British Mandate-vintage documents that speak of the Jews and the Arabs of Palestine – not Jews and Palestinians.

In fact, before local Jews began calling themselves Israelis in 1948 (when the name “Israel” was chosen for the newly-established Jewish State), the term “Palestine” applied almost exclusively to Jews and the institutions founded by new Jewish immigrants in the first half of the 20th century, before the state’s independence.

Some examples include:
- The Jerusalem Post, founded in 1932, was called The Palestine Post until 1948.
- Bank Leumi L’Israel, incorporated in 1902, was called the Anglo-Palestine Company until 1948.
- The Jewish Agency, an arm of the Zionist movement engaged in Jewish settlement since 1929, was initially called the Jewish Agency for Palestine.
- Today’s Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, founded in 1936 by German Jewish refugees who fled Nazi Germany, was originally called the Palestine Symphony Orchestra, composed of some 70 Palestinian Jews.
- The United Jewish Appeal (UJA) was established in 1939 as a merger of the United Palestine Appeal and the fund-raising arm of the Joint Distribution Committee.

​Arabs are not satisfied with one Palestinian political entity (Jordan) where they are the uncontested majority and have the political machinery and the territory for self-determination. Instead, they want an additional state because twenty-one Arab states are not enough (and one Jewish state is one too many).

Israel Has Every Right To Block Rashida Tlaib And Ilhan Omar
What principle of democracy states that you have to issue visas for illiberal bigots who actively engage in efforts to harm your citizens? If Republican Steve King were denied an entry visa into Mexico, not a single congressperson would stand up for him, not a single presidential candidate would claim that Mexico had insulted the honor of the United States, not a single Democrat would argue that it reflected poorly on Mexican democracy, and not a single liberal pundit would contend that the Mexican-U.S. relationship was being hurt.

We don’t actually need theoretical examples. How many Democrats were insulted when the speaker of the British House of Commons told the elected president of the United States he was not welcome to address them? Would any sane person claim Britain was stifling debate by doing so?

Would any American be bothered if the State Department denied an entry visa to a foreign elected official who actively worked toward the economic destruction of the United States while being an apologist for al-Qaeda or some other anti-American terrorist group? (Well, maybe a few.)

Not even we believe people are entitled to visit simply because they demand it.

In 2012, the Obama administration denied a visa to Michael Ben-Ari, a member of the hard-right Israeli Kach party. Ben-Ari is no worse than Tlaib or Omar. I don’t remember widespread angst about the state of American democracy breaking out. Surely we were secure enough in our beliefs to handle his presence, right?

And when the U.S. government refused to give Narendra Modi — now the prime minister of India, but at the time the chief elected official in the state of Gujarat — a visa, no one seemed to think we were slapping India in the face. We relied on a 1998 law that stated foreign officials who exhibit “severe violations of religious freedom” were ineligible for visas.

Edwin Black: Who’s funding illegal Palestinian settlements in Area C? Confronting history
In June 1967, when Israel fought its preemptive Six-Day War and expelled Jordan, the Jewish state occupied this same disputed former Turkish colonial region, still called the West Bank. In 1988, Jordan rescinded any claim of sovereignty, deepening the sovereignty vacuum.

In 1993 and 1995, after years of diplomatic wrangling, Israel and the avowed Palestine Liberation Organization terror group signed the Oslo Accords, envisioning a peaceful two-state solution. Under these accords and subsequent modifications at Wye, Sharm el-Sheikh and elsewhere, the “West Bank” was divided into three separate administrative zones: Areas A, B and C.

Area A is reserved for Palestinian civil and administrative control, and seats the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah. Area B is governed by Palestinian civil control under a joint Israeli-Palestinian security apparatus.

Area C, also called Judea and Samaria, comprises roughly 60 percent of the West Bank. It more closely resembles the biblical and original international demarcation of a Jewish state during the initial League of Nations mandate, but is now considered occupied by the international community. The majority of Area C residents are Israelis—an estimated 325,000 alongside some 300,000 Arabs. In essence, Oslo normalized and structured the Israeli occupation and administration of the disputed former Turkish lands.

But by virtue of a cumulative multibillion-euro effort, European capitals are working hard to destabilize the last pillars of the Oslo Accords. Thus, these countries seek to create a Palestinian state along the 1948 armistice line (also known as the 1967 lines) without further consulting the Jewish state. This ensures that the Palestinian Authority knows it need not negotiate with Jerusalem, even as the United States and Gulf countries make a daring dash to achieve peace.

As the urgency of Area C is becoming clearer, still murky is the source of the diverse European funding that enables this conflict and the routes those billions of euros take across the Mediterranean. What’s more, there is widespread fear that millions in funds are continuously funneled through entities openly accused of being affiliated with established terrorist organizations.
How Anti-Semitism Almost Found a Place in California’s School Curriculum
On Monday, the California board of education announced that it was withdrawing its proposed model of an ethnic-studies curriculum, which, besides being rife with such gobbledygook as “cisheteropatriarchy,” “hxrstory,” and “misogynoir,” also contained its share of anti-Semitism. Karin Klein writes:

The number of hate crimes against Jews in California increased more than those against any other group in 2018, according to the state attorney general’s office. That, of course, doesn’t include the gunman’s attack on a synagogue in Poway on the last day of Passover this last April. In fact, the only group that experienced more hate crimes last year were Latinos, whose population in the state is much higher. The number of hate crimes against Muslims was less than half that of those against Jews. . . .

But don’t expect to find this or similar information about anti-Semitism in the draft of a “model curriculum” for teaching ethnic studies in public high schools in California. There’s a long list of the kinds of hatred that have oppressed minority groups in California, including bigotry against Muslims and transsexual people. All of the items on the list belong there, but anti-Semitism is curiously missing. . . .

[Moreover], the curriculum encourages students to study the Boycott, Divest, and Sanction movement (BDS) as one of various worthy “social movements.” It defines BDS as “a global social movement that currently aims to establish freedom for Palestinians living under apartheid conditions.” . . . Israel [alone] is singled out [for this sort of invective]. . . . The draft recommends that teachers quote lyrics by British-Palestinian recording artist Shadia Mansour asserting that Israelis [control and manipulate the media].

It’s hard to imagine that a few edits could fix what’s wrong with this supposed model for teaching understanding and critical thinking.
Jews praise Calif. education board's decision to rewrite curriculum
Following the announcement that the current draft of the curriculum had been rejected the Simon Wiesenthal Center said in a brief statement on Twitter that this was a “victory for all Californians and a defeat for antisemites and extremists.

“[We are] grateful to [the] elected officials who intervened,” it said, adding that the Simon Wiesenthal Center is “ready to help revise curriculum.”

In a statement on Facebook, the Israeli American Council, who headed up a campaign and petition about the matter, thanked “our vibrant and active community for mobilizing and sending thousands of letters and emails to the commission.

“We thank the more than 14,000 who signed our petition and joined this important cause,” it added.

CEO of StandWithUs, Roz Rothstein responded to the news in a brief statement on Twitter.

"The pro-Israel community and people of good will stood together, united against a hateful, biased curriculum and demanded change,” she said. “Our voices were heard.

“We look forward to seeing a curriculum that is inclusive, and that we can all feel comfortable with,” Rothstein added.
GOP Leader Demands Investigation Into Anti-Semitic Calif. High School Curriculum
Lawmakers such as McCarthy and the pro-Israel activists opposed to the curriculum welcomed the decision to rework the anti-Israel curriculum, but said more must be done to expose those behind the initial proposal and its anti-Israel content.

"While I am relieved that California made the obvious decision to revisit this wholly misguided proposal, we need to know why and how a blatantly anti-Semitic, anti-Israel, factually inaccurate curriculum made its way through the ranks of California's Department of Education," McCarthy told the Free Beacon.

"Taxpayer dollars should never be approved to fund a curriculum that whitewashes Israel's history while simultaneously promoting the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement, which seeks to destroy the state of Israel," McCarthy said. "This was not simply an oversight—the California Department of Education's attempt to institutionalize anti-Semitism is not only discriminatory and intolerant, it's dangerous."

McCarthy is now "calling on the state to look into this matter further."

Information published this week by the Free Beacon shows that several of the educators involved in crafting the initial curriculum have promoted anti-Israel causes, including the BDS movement, which seeks to wage economic warfare on Israel and its citizens.

California Jewish legislators hang mezuzahs in symbolic move
Jewish state legislators in California hung mezuzahs on their office doors after returning from summer recess.

During the recess, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a bill that bars landlords and homeowners associations from prohibiting their tenants from affixing mezuzahs to their doors and door frames. The Legislature’s Jewish Caucus, which has 16 members, had lobbied hard for the measure.

The bill was introduced following complaints from Jewish renters and condo owners who were told to remove their mezuzahs because of a building or apartment complex policy.

Known to some as the “mezuzah bill,” it also had the support of secular organizations, as well as Catholic and Hindu groups.

The Jewish Caucus in a statement Monday made the announcement about the mezuzahs hung in Sacramento.
The Longest-Lasting Conspiracy Theory
"To try to defeat an irrational supposition – especially when it is firmly held by its proponents – with a rational explanation is virtually impossible. Any information that does not correspond with the conspiracy theorists' preferred social, political, or ethnic narrative is ipso facto false. Social scientists have described such theories as having a "self-sealing quality" that makes them "particularly immune to challenge." — Deborah Lipstadt, Antisemitism Here and Now, 2019 pp 7-8.

The lies about the State of Israel are amplified in the West through the "mainstream media", such as: The New York Times, The New Yorker, the BBC, The Guardian, MSNBC, and CNN. Churches join in, and of course the United Nations, as well as so-called human rights organizations where pretty well anything goes: The Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Amnesty International, and Human Rights Watch.

This bias is well monitored by a number of websites that work to identify their inaccuracies and deliberate distortions about Israel, the IDF, or Palestinian terrorism. CAMERA, Honest Reporting, UK Media Watch, and BBC Watch all dissect bad reportage, and contact editors to request corrections.
Ilhan Omar vs. Miss Iraq: The Feud
The feud between freshman Congresswoman Ilhan Omar and Miss Iraq (Sarah Idan) challenges the long-held media and political bias that Omar is representative of the American Muslim community. The conflict between the two Muslim women arose when Idan called out Omar in a radio interview.

Speaking with conservative host Sara Carter earlier this month, Miss Iraq shared:
“Omar does not represent me as a Muslim, [she] does not represent millions of Muslims in the Middle East. You know, like in Arab countries we call her the Muslim Brotherhood.”

Miss Iraq came into the global spotlight after a selfie she took with Miss Israel went viral, trigging immense backlash against Miss Iraq from Muslims who still do not see Israelis as human beings. The anti-Semitic hate Miss Iraq received is the same rhetoric we see coming from Ilhan Omar.

Equally frustrated with having Ilhan Omar pushed onto us as representative of the American Muslim identity, Idan drew strong support from powerful Muslim voices against Islamism, including media analyst and TV anchor Dalia Al-Aqidi, an Iraqi journalist based in the U.S.

Aqidi challenged Ilhan Omar to a direct interview, one Muslim immigrant woman to another.

As a Muslim woman and an American, I stand with Sarah Idan and Dalia Al-Aqidi: Ilhan Omar does not represent American Muslims.

Recently, a clash between progressive Islam and Islamists occurred against during the first annual Muslim Caucus, where Ilhan Omar attacked progressive Muslim leader, Ani Zonneveld, who runs circles around Omar in terms of accomplishment and human rights initiatives.
McCarthy on the Antisemitism ‘Growing Around the World’: ‘We Haven’t Seen Something Like This Since the 1930s’
On Wednesday’s broadcast of Fox News Channel’s “Special Report,” House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) appeared on location in Israel to discuss that trip he was on with a bipartisan group of lawmakers.

McCarthy told host Bret Baier that he and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) wanted to show those members the threats from Hezbollah to Israel.

The California Republican was also asked about the absence of any members of “The Squad” on the trip, which is the foursome of freshman Democrat members led by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), which have embraced the so-called Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel.

“If you look at it, they did not come on the trip with their colleagues,” McCarthy said. “Secondly, if you look at the antisemitism that has been growing around the world, we haven’t seen something like this since the 1930s, and the actions that they have taken in Congress itself, whereas the Senate passed S-1. It’s the anti-BDS. It’s the stopping of the boycott, divestiture, and sanctions against Israel. That bill passed the Senate overwhelmingly. Chuck Schumer not only voted it, he cosponsored it.”

“But when it came to the House, they couldn’t pass the bill,” he continued. “They moved a resolution, and much of that was to do about this new movement of this new socialist democrat. And look at what Bernie Sanders, look at Kamala Harris, wouldn’t even go to the AIPAC meeting this year inside Washington, unheard of in the process that’s been going forward. There’s a number of Democrats that still stand with Israel, but this new socialist democrat group has a much different belief.”

Paul Findley, ‘Arafat’s best friend’
Former Republican congressman Paul Findley, who died this week at 98, blamed his 1982 defeat on AIPAC, the pro-Israel lobby giant. That is understandable since so many in the pro-Israel community tried to take credit, but as so often happens, his career really succumbed to self-inflicted wounds.

He was vulnerable because had called himself “Arafat’s best friend in Washington,” and he seemed to care more about the Palestinians than Illinois farmers.

Returning from one trip to the Middle East, Findley had said he’d brought written proof of Arafat’s commitment to peace, but when asked to produce it all he had to show was a scrap of paper with what appeared to be the signature of the PLO leader, nothing else.

During that period the PLO and Arafat were considered terrorists by the United States and running a terrorist state-within-a-state in Lebanon, from which they routinely shelled Jewish communities in northern Israel and launched terrorist attacks on civilians.

Arafat was everyone’s poster boy for terrorism, except Findley, who became his advocate.

In the end it didn’t matter whether Findley was defeated by an opponent heavily financed by Jewish contributors or by failure to pay enough attention to his constituents. Findley blamed the Jews. He blamed them and their influence in his speeches, articles, books and at every opportunity. Like the biblical Balaam, he set forth to curse them but wound up praising them. Sadly, that may be the defining element in his political legacy.
John Delaney: When others drop out of the 2020 race, I will shine
The Democratic presidential hopeful also expressed his befuddlement with many prominent members of his party who have gone out of their way to criticize Israel.

“I don’t understand what’s going on in the Democratic Party because there’s a lot of bad actors around the world,” said Delaney. “I don’t understand why we become so preoccupied with what a very good ally of ours is doing… Israel is a very, very strong ally of the United States — one of our strongest, not just in the Middle East, but anywhere in the world. We share a lot of things with them, including a set of values.

“Can you criticize your friends? Of course,” Delaney continued. “You know that. But there seems to be a bit of an obsession with criticizing Israel right now in the Democratic Party and there’s a lot of other more questionable actors and bad actors obviously around the world that deserve our attention.”

Delaney also broke with a number of other Democratic candidates, including former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke and Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), when he demurred from labeling Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “a racist.”

“I’m not a big fan but, at this point I don’t follow his speeches and his sayings every day to make that kind of an accusation about him,” he said. “I don’t think it’s constructive to spend a lot of time beating up on the leader of a very important ally.”

The former congressman said he would continue to recognize Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, a decision made by President Donald Trump earlier this year. However, Delaney would have preferred the decision had been part of a broader negotiated peace process between Israel and the Palestinians, rather than a unilateral decision.

“I’ve been to the Golan. I don’t believe that should go back to Syria, which at this moment in time, I mean that’s a crazy idea,” said Delaney. “I don’t know why would we want… to give anything to Syria at this point.”
Academic Prize For Scholarly Form Of Blood Libel
At a week-long conference on anti-Semitism held in Vienna in February, I presented a paper addressing responses to the blood libel through the ages and assessing modern historiography on its origins and impact. The final section, which dealt with contemporary accusations against Jews and/or Israel that some observers have labeled blood libels, highlighted The Right to Maim,[1] a recent book by Prof. Jasbir Puar of Rutgers University published by Duke University Press. The book has now been awarded the National Women’s Studies Association’s Alison Piepmeier Book Prize for scholarship focusing on feminist disability studies. Even amidst the moral and intellectual wreckage that litters the academic landscape with respect to Israel, this award stands out. I consequently present a slightly revised version of the final section of that presentation.

At the current historical juncture, the relevance of the blood libel transcends the renewed historiographical interest that marked the last four decades. First, the libel itself persists in the statements and writings of some far from marginal figures in Arab countries and to a lesser degree even elsewhere. Second, it has become such a paradigmatic specter for Jews that some accusations leveled at Israel are reflexively characterized as blood libels.

When Menachem Begin resorted to this term to characterize international criticism of Israel for the killings in the Lebanese refugee camps of Sabra and Shatila, he was, in my view, using the term improperly. But Israel–and sometimes the Jewish collective–has in fact been subjected to imaginary accusations for which the blood libel metaphor is entirely on point. Thus, Israel has been accused of poisoning Palestinians; harvesting their organs; thousands of Jews are said to have refrained from coming to work at the World Trade Center on that fateful September 11, with Jews responsible in whole or in part for the attacks.

Taking the UK University College Union to court for antisemitism
“The past three years have brought many antisemitic scandals in the British Labour party to the light. My repeated experiences with antisemitism in earlier years in the University College Union (UCU) can be seen as a kind of precursor for the hatred which is now regularly in the public domain.”

Ronnie Fraser is the Director of the Academic Friends of Israel -- a voluntary position -- which campaigns against the academic boycott of Israel and antisemitism on campus. His doctoral thesis focused on the attitude of the British Trade Union Movement (TUC) toward Israel during the years 1945-1982.

“After nine years of standing up for Israel within the UCU I felt that I had reached the point of no return. I was one of the few pro-Israel activists left at the UCU and the only one who attended the 2011 congress. It had become gradually clear to me that the union was institutionally antisemitic. At the time few people understood that. When I spoke at UCU conferences I saw from the reactions of the other delegates that I was in hostile territory.

“I discussed my options with the lawyer Anthony Julius.. He is well known for his 1996–2000 role defending American scholar Deborah Lipstadt from the libel charge brought by Holocaust denier David Irving. He said that I could bring a claim against the UCU based on the Equality Act 2010.
BDS: Social Justice? Or Just Terror?
If a movement called itself "social justice" included terrorists, would you still support it? The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement is notorious for spreading a hateful, one-sided view of Israel, yet many are unaware of the movement's ties to terrorism.

How 'Our Boys' Put a Face on the Israel-Palestinian Conflict
A couple of tragedies followed each other in the lead up to the 2014 Israel-Gaza War, in which over 2,000 Palestinians died and over 50 IDF soldiers. How does the new miniseries 'Our Boys' portray the heavy emotions and faces behind the preceding events of the war? Culture contributor Carmit Levite discusses with host Sarah Coates.

BBC Arabic breaches style guide on Temple Mount
Readers were told that:
“Extremist Jewish groups were trying to congregate near Moors’ [Mugrabi] Gate in order to enter the Mosque and commemorate the anniversary of what is referred to as ‘the destruction of the temple, which coincided this year with Eid al-Adha…”

“At a later time, the police allowed dozens of Jewish extremists to enter the plaza of the Jerusalem sanctuary for a few minutes…”

In exactly the same way that BBC World Service radio’s failure to comply with the BBC’s own style guide confused audiences, this report’s employment of the deliberately politicised term “al Aqsa Mosque” to describe the entire Temple Mount plaza and the ensuing claim that Jews were trying to “enter the mosque” is inaccurate and materially misleading.

The headline further misleads readers by suggesting that “clashes between Israeli police and Palestinians” took place in the al Aqsa Mosque rather than – as was actually the case – outside the building.

Also inaccurate is the blanket description of unarmed, non-violent visitors to the holiest site of their faith as “extremists”. While Muslim visitors to the site on that day (some of whom participated in the violent rioting) were described by BBC Arabic merely as “Palestinians”, the description of Jewish visitors as “extremists” demonstrates bias on the part of that BBC department.

CAMERA Arabic has submitted a complaint to the BBC concerning that report.

Rabbi assaulted in Berlin — second such attack in as many weeks
Berlin police said Thursday that they were investigating an attack on a rabbi, the second in as many weeks in the German capital.

Police said the victim, identifiable as Jewish by his attire, was pushed to the ground by two unidentified suspects while walking in the Charlottenburg neighborhood Tuesday afternoon. They said he was treated in a hospital for pain in his leg and head.

They didn’t identify the victim, but the daily Bild gave his name as Jan Aaron Hammel. The rabbi told Bild the men insulted him in Arabic before assaulting him.

Two weeks ago, another rabbi reported being spat upon and cursed at in Arabic by two men in a building in the same general neighborhood as he walked by. Rabbi Yehuda Teichtal was walking past an apartment building in the Wilmersdorf neighborhood on a Friday night when, he said. he was spat at and sworn at by two men inside the building. Teichtal, who said the two men spoke in Arabic, called in a statement for “tolerance, dialogue and training.”
Neo-Nazis plaster 3 Seattle synagogues with racist flyers
Neo-Nazis affiliated with the anti-Semitic Daily Stormer Book Club plastered racist fliers on three Seattle synagogues.

The fliers were posted over the weekend by a masked man and featured an illustration of Democratic Reps. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York and Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts biting an arm marked America, according to

The flier read “Send them back” and “Deport the commie brown infestation.” The first phrase echoes recent language from US President Donald Trump, who called on the freshman lawmakers, known as “The Squad,” to “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime-infested places from which they came.”

Omar was born in Somalia; the other three were born in the United States. All are women of color.

Patch reported that other fliers were posted at North Seattle synagogues and at local churches.
DNA study reveals 130,000 Hungarians are at least 50% Jewish
A MyHeritage DNA study has revealed that Hungary’s population has the highest percentage of Jewish ancestry outside of Israel. In total, 100 countries were included in the research.

At least 7.6% of the 4,981 people living in Hungary who took the DNA test were found to have at least 25% or more Ashkenazi Jewish ethnicity.

“This is equivalent to having at least one grandparent who is fully Ashkenazi Jewish,” MyHeritage said. “This is a significantly higher percentage than the 3.5% observed in DNA test-takers living in the USA and 3% in Canada.”

Based on UN estimates, Hungary’s population is 9.7 million.

“MyHeritage discovered that 4.2% of DNA test-takers in Hungary have 50% or more Ashkenazi Jewish ethnicity,” it added.

The online genealogy platform worked on this research together with Dr. Daniel Staetsky, director of the European Jewish Demography Unit at the London-based Institute for Jewish Policy Research.

The study also found that 12.5% of the people tested in Hungary had 10% or more Ashkenazi Jewish ethnicity, compared to only 4.7% of people in the USA and 4.0% in Canada.
What do you get when you cross Birthright with ISRAEL21c?
When 40 or so students from the United States came to Israel on a Birthright trip with Israel Outdoors in July they received an unexpected extra – some ISRAEL21c programming.

The students, mostly from either Oregon State University or the University of Oregon, arrived in Israel on June 27 and left on July 9. One of the co-staffers running the trip was Rachel Poulin, ISRAEL21c’s Outreach and Engagement Coordinator.

Every day, Poulin integrated ISRAEL21c articles and videos into the day’s events for the trip, introducing the kids to content related to the experiences they were having that day.

On the way to the Dead Sea, for example, the students read the article 9 eerie and stunning photos of the disappearing Dead Sea. In Tel Aviv, the article of the day was 10 top reasons to visit Tel Aviv in 2019. While at Mount Herzl, it was Finding the story buried under every soldier’s gravestone.

“The idea was to provide additional educational content and context on every day of the trip in an effort to enhance the already amazing Birthright experience,” said Poulin. “At the end of every day, we had an evening ritual of discussing our highlights of the day while also discussing the article of the day.”
Netflix miniseries on legendary Israeli spy to drop September 6
A new Netflix series starring Sacha Baron Cohen as Eli Cohen, a spy for Israel in Syria in the early 1960s, will be released on September 6.

Netflix on Wednesday released the first stills from the six-episode drama, “The Spy,” as the premiere date was set.

The show was written and directed by Israeli Gideon Raff, best known for the Hebrew-language drama series “Hatufim” (Prisoners of War) and its acclaimed US adaptation, “Homeland.”

Mossad agent Cohen was put on trial and executed by Syria for espionage on May 18, 1965, after he successfully infiltrated the Syrian government under the alias Kamel Amin Thaabet for four years. The intelligence he conveyed during that period was credited by then-prime minister Levi Eshkol with having greatly assisted Israel during the Six Day War.

Five decades on, Israel has not given up on retrieving Cohen’s remains from Syria and bringing them to Israel for burial.

We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.


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This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 14 years and 30,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.


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