Wednesday, October 30, 2019

From Ian:

Seth Mandel: This Jew doesn't tremble
How To Fight Anti-Semitism is tightly argued and clocks in at just about 200 pages. What it’s able to accomplish in that time is remarkable, but it really shines in two areas. The first is dispensing with the lazy defense of anti-Zionism as distinct from anti-Semitism. As Weiss shows, it really is a form of anti-Semitism.

Israel “exists. It is not an abstraction.” So pointing to the history of Jews opposed to the theoretical Jewish state in the early part of the 20th century is dishonest. The latest polls find 95% of Jews have favorable views of Israel, so the number of Jewish anti-Zionists is practically a rounding error. There’s a reason for this: Since Israel’s founding in 1948, being an anti-Zionist has meant not merely opposing the establishment of a Jewish state but supporting the existing Jewish state’s destruction. “The kumbaya of the anti-Zionist dream guarantees a very bloody reality, and anti-Zionists should be forced to defend it,” Weiss writes. Anti-Zionists are conspicuously focused on being “anti” the existence of only one state: the Jewish one. While Weiss acknowledges that some legitimate criticism of Israel gets unfairly labeled as anti-Semitism, she notes that it is more often the case that anti-Zionists are trying to launder Jew-hatred as criticism of Israeli policy. “To be an anti-Zionist in Poland before the Holocaust is one thing. To be one today is something else entirely,” she says. “It is not to be ideologically opposed to an idea. It is to be against the largest Jewish community on the planet.”

Weiss has famously become the target of an insane degree of online spite — not from random folks on the internet but from fellow journalists and commentators, as well as activists. Her book shows why: She consistently forces her antagonists to face the realities of their positions instead of letting them hide behind abstractions.

The other great triumph of the book is the final chapter, which fulfills the promise of the title: “How To Fight.” She tears into the defensiveness that leads so many Jewish Americans to fight on their accusers’ terms. She approvingly quotes a former Columbia student (Weiss is also an alumnus): “A man calls you a pig. Do you walk around with a sign explaining that, in fact, you are not a pig? Do you hand out leaflets expostulating in detail upon the manifold differences between you and a pig?”

Weiss counsels Jews to stop negotiating the terms of their own existence. She also quotes former British Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks: “Non-Jews respect Jews who respect Judaism, and they are embarrassed by Jews who are embarrassed by Judaism.” Likewise, she asks readers to call out anti-Semitism, “especially when it’s hard” to do so. That means criticizing minorities, such as Ilhan Omar, who regularly use anti-Semitic tropes, rather than letting the fear of being called a racist intimidate you into silence.

Weiss tells readers to “expect solidarity.” As Jabotinsky recognized a century ago, it’s not “equality” if you’re not given equal standing. “We should not make a deal that requires us to erase ourselves,” Weiss writes. She advises other members of the tribe to “lean into Judaism,” not toward secularization and assimilation.

When, in 1982, then-Sen. Joe Biden tried to cajole Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin by holding U.S. aid to Israel over Begin’s head, the prime minister reportedly responded, “I am not a Jew with trembling knees.” Bari Weiss has picked up Begin’s baton in compelling fashion with a timely warning against a Judaism that trembles at the knees.
JCPA (Dore Gold ): The Attempt to Revive the False Charge that Israel Is Racist
Every few years a voice emerges which seeks to brand Israel or its leaders as racist. The most famous case was the decision of the UN General Assembly in 1975 to brand Zionism, the national liberation movement of the Jewish people, as racism.

Israel's ambassador to the UN, Chaim Herzog, speaking in the name of the Jewish people, responded by saying that the resolution was based on hatred, falsehood, and arrogance, as he tore the resolution in half. In 1991, the General Assembly formally revoked the resolution, largely as a result of diplomatic efforts of the United States.

Tragically, the issue has been reawakened in the context of the 2020 American presidential campaign, with the charge by Senator Bernie Sanders that the Israeli government under Prime Minister Netanyahu is racist. Israel does not want to get drawn into American domestic politics. But Israel cannot, indeed Israel must not, let such lies stand without a response.

It is Israel which reached out into Ethiopia during the 1980s to assist 120,000 of their Jewish brothers and sisters to cross Sudan and start new lives in Israel. During the Syrian civil war, it was Israel that quietly opened its borders to Syrian refugees in order to provide them with urgent medical care. Anyone visiting Hadassah Hospital, or for that matter any Israeli hospital, will witness how thousands of Arab and Jewish patients are cared for by Arab and Jewish doctors.

Israeli medical teams led the effort to defeat Ebola in West Africa, with mobile clinics which were flown in. Ironically, it was Prime Minister Netanyahu who put Africa at the top of Israel's priorities, with his repeated visits to the continent, starting in 2016.

Peace will eventually prevail in the Middle East, but it will be delayed if falsehoods about Israel continue to be spread and the Jewish state is defamed by those who should know better.

Bernie Sanders burns Israel
Abbas has used foreign aid to:
🇵🇸 Amass a $1 billion
🇵🇸 Buy a $50 million jet
🇵🇸 Build a $17 million palace
Hamas have used foreign aid to:
☠️ Fire 20,000 rockets at Israel
☠️ Build terror tunnels
☠️ Fund lavish lifestyles
Bernie wants to give Gaza aid instead of Israel.

Code Pink sells out women and exploits Jews on propaganda tour of Iran
We have long followed CodePink’s activities, and have written about the organization on dozens of occasions; a leader in the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions campaign against Israel, in 2013, the ADL listed CodePink among the “Top 10 most influential and active anti-Israel groups in the United States,” noting that its work focuses “on delegitimizing Israel and convincing the American public that Israel is an international villain that deserves to be ostracized and isolated.”

Accordingly, CodePink leaders have long castigated Israel and campaigned for the destruction of its character as a Jewish nation state on the basis of human rights violations. On the other hand, those same leaders look the other way as Iran abuses its own citizens—perpetrating some of the same horrors CodePink falsely attributes to Israel.

Though Iran was named in 2018 as one of the worst 10 countries in the world on the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap report; has executed thousands of political prisoners since 1988; regularly imprisons women for removing their hijabs (headscarves); and publicly hangs suspected homosexuals, CodePink largely overlooks this behavior and claims that its travel to the country will “help facilitate understanding and respect between our people—the building blocks necessary for true international diplomacy and peace between our countries.”

CodePinkers have thus journeyed to Iran multiple times, and maintained positive relations with Iranian regime officials, including those who are instrumental the regime’s oppression of women and homosexuls, or those who spread overtly anti-Semitic propaganda (though CodePinkers frequently insist that “it’s important to make a distinction between Judaism and Zionism”).

Moreover, CodePink insists that American sanctions of Iran should be entirely rolled back, and that Iran can’t be expected to negotiate with the United States until sanctions are dissolved. Similarly, CodePink contends that the United States’ soured relationship with Iran is due only to American militarism and interference, rather than any Iranian threats.
New York Times Erases Amy Klobuchar’s Statement in Favor of U.S. Aid to Israel
Perhaps Klobuchar’s statement strongly favoring continued U.S. support for Israel is not consistent with the “new tone on U.S.-Israel relations” and “shifting” Democratic attitudes touted in The Times story, but by omitting her clear expression of strong support for continued aid, the paper does a huge disservice to readers, misleading them about a presidential hopeful’s position on an important issue.As Haaretz‘s Amir Tibon reported:

In reply to a question about conditioning American aid to Israel on actions of the Israeli government, Klobuchar said that in light of how Trump’s policies have increased the risk of war in the Middle East, she actually wanted to “make sure we continue the aid” to Israel.

Klobuchar’s statement in support of continued aid came in response to a question by moderator Ben Rhodes (20:00):

The question I have is, you know, towards the very end of the Obama administration, for instance, we abstained on a resolution on settlements at the U.N. We put out some U.S. positions which the Israeli government has not wanted us to do in the past on issues around Jerusalem, the final status issues. Um, if you have an Israeli government that is not showing any seriousness in pursuing a Palestinian state do you think that U.S. pressure, whether it’s aid, diplomacy — what is the balance between trying to exert some pressure on this issue to get them to take concrete steps towards a Palestinian state versus a status quote that is kind of more step back and let this to Israeli leaders to make the decisions?

CAMERA has contacted The Times to urge editors to publish a clarification or editor’s note making clear that Ms. Klobuchar made a very explicit statement during the J Street conference interview in support of U.S. aid to Israel.

Avi Abelow: Nikki Haley Bashes Bernie Sanders for Horrific Policy Change on Israel

House overwhelmingly condemns Turkey for Armenian genocide and Kurdish incursion — with Ilhan Omar the lone Dem holdout on both
Omar is the most interesting case, though, since you’d expect support from Democratic members for Democratic resolutions, particularly when the rest of the caucus overwhelmingly backs those resolutions. The only Democrat besides Omar not to vote yes on one of these two bills was Eddie Bernice Johnson of Texas, who voted present on the Armenian genocide resolution but voted with nearly everyone else on sanctioning Turkey over the Kurds. AOC voted yes on both. So did Rashida Tlaib. So did Ayanna Pressley, the fourth member of “the Squad.” Only Ilhan Omar, curiously, balked at both.

How come?

We can’t condemn Turkey until we apologize to Native Americans?

“Ilhan Omar all-lives-mattered the Armenian genocide,” tweeted Illinois prof Nicholas Grossman after reading her statement.

And what’s that bit about “academic consensus”? Which notable genocides does Ilhan Omar believe the jury is still out on? She’s been outspoken in the past in denouncing American genocide. Suddenly, today, she’s much more circumspect.

Remember too that Omar is a champion of the BDS movement. If she’s serious in her belief that we shouldn’t single out a particular example of alleged oppression when there are so many other examples we’ve yet to condemn, it’s strange to find her eager to punish Israel while overlooking far worse human-rights offenders. That’s been a core conservative criticism of her on foreign policy, in fact: Why Israel instead of China, say? Or North Korea? Omar’s inconsistency on when it it and isn’t okay to name and shame particular bad guys is … curious.

A vote for Labour is a vote for anti-Semitism
The December election that now looks inevitable will be, as all elections are, a test. A test of a decade-old government that isn’t entirely sure what its achievements in office have been. A test of the public’s continuing appetite for Brexit and its tolerance for parliamentary histrionics. A test, too, of whether the country is ready to return to majoritarian government or whether volatile voter intentions and hung parliaments will be with us a while longer.

None of these is the most important metric. That dubious honour goes to the anti-Semitism test: will the UK put a party of Jew-haters into power? All of us will have to confront that test and each and every one will be judged on how they measure up. What is at stake is something far bigger than tax or education or even Brexit: the character of the country itself. The Labour Party has embraced ‘the organisation of politics against the Jews’ and the electorate will now decide whether that politics succeeds or is rejected. An unshakeable infamy lurks if we choose wrong.

The anti-Semitism test applies more acutely to the Labour Party, the largest and most successful anti-Semitic political party in Western Europe. Those we once flattered as ‘moderates’ turned out to be so fanatically attached to Labour that no outrage or indignity could prise them away. Their rationale was that they were ‘staying to fight’, resisting anti-Semitism and extremism from within, and that the Labour Party’s soul could be saved. Behold their victories manifold.

Until now, these matters could be brushed aside as academic but an election gives them practical import. Elections produce winners and losers (even if not always clear or resounding ones) and Labour ‘moderates’ now must choose: do they want Labour to win a general election? The question is inseparable from whether they wish to see Jeremy Corbyn become prime minister. The one wills the other.
CAA analysis proves Corbyn’s supporters are trying to place cast of Jew-haters, antisemitism-deniers and Jew-baiters in dozens of constituencies ahead of general election
As political parties gear up for a general election that may imminently be called, selections of candidates are underway across the country. However, numerous figures with very troubling records are being lined up as candidates for the Labour Party.

In the election for Mayor of the West Midlands metropolitan area, former Respect Party leader Salma Yaqoob, who recently joined Labour, is being fast-tracked to become the Party’s candidate. In the past, Ms Yaqoob shared Rothschild conspiracy theories on social media, has repeatedly tweeted about “Zionists”, described allegations of antisemitism against Ken Livingstone as “Zionist smears”, suggested that Jews in Israel were white colonisers and described the Jewish State as a “pig”, has praised Jewish Voice for Labour, an antisemitism-denial group and sham Jewish representative organisation, and has described efforts to address Labour’s antisemitism crisis (which by inference includes the Party’s adoption of the International Definition of Antisemitism) as “a vicious campaign for censorship.”

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has lionised Ms Yaqoob, describing her as a “hero” and a “fantastic activist”, and she has been endorsed by the pro-Corbyn group, Momentum, Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott, Shadow Justice Secretary Richard Burgon and numerous councillors, trade unionists and pro-Corbyn media commentators.

In Liverpool Riverside, the seat currently held by Dame Louise Ellman MP who quit the Labour Party over antisemitism, Jewish Voice for Labour member Jo Bird is being lined up as the new candidate in a move that has been described as the “ultimate insult” to the Jewish community. Cllr Bird was briefly suspended for dubbing the Party’s disciplinary procedures as “Jew process” and has previously discussed allegations of racism saying: “Seriously, one of the things that does worry me is the privileging of racism against Jews, over and above — as more worthy of resources than other forms of racism.”

Jewish Labour MP who called Corbyn an anti-Semite wins contest to run again
A veteran Jewish lawmaker in the British Labour Party who last year called leader Jeremy Corbyn an anti-Semite on Monday won a reselection vote to remain as the local party candidate.

Dame Margaret Hodge, who has served as MP for Barking in London since 1994, faced a reselection vote, her local constituency party decided, which allows parties to replace MPs by opening the door for other party members to run for the seat in a primary election.

Hodge announced her win in a tweet with a photo of herself and activists, with the word, “Victory!”

The Board of Deputies of British Jews congratulated Hodge on her “emphatic reselection,” The Guardian reported, adding: “Trolls who opposed her reckoned without Margaret’s strength and popularity. Not lost on anyone that Labour’s so-called ‘anti-racist’ leader missing in action as his drones tried to force out another Jewish MP.”

According to The Guardian, new rules in the Labour party mean a reselection contest can be triggered if a third of local party members vote in favor.

Labour has been accused of using the procedure to purge anti-Corbyn elements from within its ranks.
SNP and Green Party leaders tell CAA they are ready to make Jeremy Corbyn PM despite antisemitism, Liberal Democrats ignore question
A few weeks ago, Campaign Against Antisemitism wrote to all the Opposition parties in Parliament (other than Labour) asking whether they would rule out making the antisemite, Jeremy Corbyn, Prime Minister.

The scenario could arise prior to an election or in the event of a hung Parliament after one if the Opposition parties agree to enter into a coalition led by Mr Corbyn.

The responses and lack of responses from Party leaders were disappointing.

The Liberal Democrats, Change UK, the Democratic Unionist Party and Plaid Cymru did not respond to our letter at all.

Although the leader of the Liberal Democrats, Jo Swinson, has repeatedly ruled out working with Mr Corbyn because of his views on Brexit and his handling of the antisemitism crisis, this position has been repeatedly weakened by the addendum that Mr Corbyn also could not command the requisite numbers in Parliament, which regrettably dilutes the principled anti-racism approach with political pragmatism, which is not reassuring.

The Rt Hon. Ian Blakford MP provided the SNP’s detailed response, in which he wrote: “I want to make it clear that the SNP abhors antisemitism in the strongest possible way. We believe that the recent political events show that now more than ever politicians should be responsible with their actions and use language with care. The SNP is absolutely opposed to racism and antisemitism in all its forms.”

However, the SNP did not rule out backing Mr Corbyn, albeit it noted our concerns: “Noting your concerns, I want to be clear that we do not have a preference for any particular individual and our support for any caretaker Prime Minister would only be for as long as is necessary to secure the extension, with an election held immediately afterwards. Our priority is to stop a No Deal Brexit…and remove the current government. The SNP would not offer support to any individual or party for any longer than is strictly necessary.”
Brexit Party MEP Ann Widdecombe defends former Nazi guard currently on trial in Germany
Ann Widdecombe has suggested that the case against a 97-year-old man who served as a Nazi concentration camp guard when he was seventeen “lacks proportionality”, and that any resistance he might have shown at the time would have done “absolutely nothing in terms of alleviating human suffering”.

The former Conservative MP turned Brexit Party MEP made the comments on the LBC radio channel, suggesting that the defendant “would have been shot” if he had put up any resistance, and insisted that “if he had been in any way, even at the age of seventeen, actively involved in the deaths at the death camps, then I think that’s a different issue. But he wasn’t.”

If he had declined an order, Ms Widdecombe maintained, “he would have been shot. And not a single Jew would have been saved,” although she did note that some “massively brave” guards had indeed resisted orders.

Host Nick Ferrari suggested that this would fall under the ‘I was only carrying out orders’ defence, which had failed at the post-War Nuremberg trials, but Ms Widdecombe did not relent.
BDS is failing – the never-ending story (October 2019)
Here’s the latest installment in our ongoing series of posts documenting BDS fails.
German parliament condemns ‘anti-Semitic’ BDS movement
The German Bundestag has passed a resolution describing the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions campaign against Israel as anti-Semitic. Parliamentarians said some BDS slogans recalled Nazi propaganda.

A cross-party alliance in the German parliament on Friday passed a resolution condemning the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) campaign, and cutting off funding to any organizations that “actively support” the BDS movement.

Anti-Israel BDS founder denied entry to UK
Prominent Palestinian activist and co-founder of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, Omar Barghouti, has been denied a visa to enter the UK, the Palestine Solidarity Campaign

In a statement issued on the PSC website on Friday, it was said that “Barghouti is unable to travel to the UK because his visa was abnormally delayed by the British Government without explanation.”

UN releases ‘unprecedented’ report linking anti-Semitism to BDS movement
Israeli, Jewish and pro-Israel groups all applauded the publication of an ‘unprecedented’ United Nations report on anti-Semitism, that, among other issues, links anti-Semitism to criticism of Israel and the BDS movement.

“This report marks one of the first times the U.N. has addressed the issue of anti-Semitism in any detail,” said Anne Herzberg, Legal Advisor and U.N. Liaison at NGO Monitor. “The Special Rapporteur condemned the use of anti-Semitic tropes and denial of Israel’s right to exist by BDS activists. Importantly, the Rapporteur also recommends the IHRA definition as a useful tool in combating anti-Semitism. Hopefully, U.N. bodies, particularly the Human Rights Council, will follow the Rapporteur’s lead by adopting IHRA and ending their promotion of anti-Semitic tropes and attacks on Israel’s legitimacy.”
Oslo City Council bans purchase of Israeli settlement goods and services
The recently elected Oslo City Council is getting right to work: The Norwegian lawmakers are banning the purchase of goods and services from Israeli Jewish settlements by municipal departments and other local authorities.

It is the sixth Norwegian municipality to ban settlement goods and services, in addition to one county council, according to a statement.

The Oslo ban is part of the platform for 2019-23 adopted recently by the City Council, the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement targeting Israel announced in a statement on its website. The council is led by the Socialist Left, Labor and Green parties.

According to the report, the ban does not distinguish between Israeli and international corporations that operate in Jewish settlements in the West Bank.
The BDS Movement's allies among the hypocritical Dutch elite
Manfred Gerstenfeld interviews Wim Kortenoeven:

How widespread is the BDS Movement?
“The anti-Israel Boycott Divestment and Sanctions Movement (BDS) is active worldwide. In the Netherlands, BDS has a fine meshed network which collaborates with other anti-Israel activists. The Dutch BDS movement and its anti-Israel allies have permeated churches, leading societal and political organizations as well as national bodies which include some of the country’s highest elites.”

Wim Kortenoeven is a Dutch Middle East specialist with a long career in pro-Israel advocacy. He has published several books on the Middle East and was a member of the Dutch Parliament. He is currently the director of a public affairs and consultancy firm.

Can you elaborate on BDS in the Netherlands? What is the Rights Forum and who promotes it?
“The Rights Forum holds a central role in anti-Israel activities. It was founded by the most influential Dutch BDS promoter and anti-Israel activist, former Prime Minister Dries van Agt, a Christian Democrat (CDA). Van Agt gained notoriety in the 1980’s when he, in the capacity of Minister of Justice, provocatively called himself “an Aryan” while proposing to release the last three prominent Nazi war criminals from imprisonment in the Netherlands. Among these was Ferdinand aus der Fünten, Adolf Eichmann’s special representative in the Netherlands.

“For decades, Van Agt has sympathized and colluded with antisemites, amongst them Palestinian Authority and Hamas leaders. Although the Rights Forum denies that it is a pro-BDS organization or that it has an antisemitic agenda, its website clearly shows its BDS agenda. It also collaborates in various ways with other BDS organizations. The Forum employed at least one openly antisemitic author, Jan Tervoort, to write for its website.
Jewish Students Criticize Duke University Security After Pro-Palestinian Activists Disrupt Speech by Former Israeli FM Tzipi Livni
Campus police at Duke University have faced criticism from Jewish students for alleged “double standards” after angry pro-Palestinian activists disrupted a speech by a former Israeli government minister for almost three minutes last Thursday before order was restored by security.

The incident occurred during a speech by the prominent ex-Israeli politician Tzipi Livni — who served as foreign minister during the 2008-09 war against Hamas in Gaza — to a session of Duke University’s “American Grand Strategy” leadership program. Asked a question about the Gaza operation, Livni was cut off before she could answer by about 20 students chanting epithets including “war criminal,” “threat” and “shame.” Several of the protesting students read out the names of Palestinians allegedly killed by Israeli forces.

The length of the disruption — two-and-a-half-minutes — was noted by Jewish student leaders at Duke, who pointed out that campus security had been much faster to act against pro-Israel hecklers who faced down a pro-Palestinian speaker at a recent event.

“I think our group in general is disappointed that the security at the event let the protest go on for as long as they did,” Max Cherman — an executive member of Duke for Israel Public Affairs Committee (DIPAC) and a co-organizer of the event — told The Algemeiner on Tuesday. Cherman added that he had attended a recent Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) event with the outspoken anti-Israel activist Linda Sarsour during which security officers intervened “15-30 seconds after someone got up and tried to interrupt Sarsour.”

Commented Cherman: “We just think here, there’s a little bit of a double standard.”

Canary Mission: SJP AT UMN
Once a year, Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) gather at their National Conference. Participants spout hatred of Jews and glorify terrorism. The 2019 National SJP Conference is to be held at the University of Minnesota (UMN). Meet the activists behind the host chapter, SJP UMN, and see the vile and deplorable things they have said on social media.

70-year-old Jewish man in Berlin assaulted in violent antisemitic attack
Berlin’s police department said a man assaulted a 70-year-old Jewish man on Tuesday in the district of Pankow. The police notice defined the attack as “Man antisemitically insulted.”

The 70-year-old man was walking in the neighborhood of Pankow when an unknown assailant insulted him with antisemitic language. As the elderly man defended himself verbally, the assailant punched him, causing injuries to his head and chin. The attempts by the Jewish man to blunt the blows caused him to lose his footing and he fell to the ground. A bystander ran toward the two men, prompting the assailant to flee.

The latest outbreak of antisemitism comes on the heels of the city’s prosecutors pulling the plug on an investigation into an antisemitic attack on Rabbi Yehuda Teichtal, president of the city’s Chabad community. Assailants allegedly spat on the rabbi after he left synagogue services in July.

The mayor of Berlin, Michael Müller, has faced intense criticism for his lax attitude toward rising antisemitism in Germany’s capital. Berlin’s best-selling paper Bild said last week that Müller has helped “make antisemitism socially respectable” because he welcomed Iran’s antisemitic mayor to the capital.

The Jerusalem Post reported in September that Müller met Tehran’s mayor Pirouz Hanachi, who participated in a rally in his city calling for Israel’s destruction.
Lazio fans make Nazi salutes before Celtic game
Fans of the Italian football club, Società Sportiva Lazio, have been filmed in Glasgow making Nazi salutes prior to the club’s game against Celtic.

The groups of fans were chanting far-right slogans on Buchanan Street on their way to the Celtic Park stadium in Parkhead.

Police officers escorted the fans, including specialist anti-mafia police reportedly flown to Scotland to monitor the “ultras” among the fans, who have a reputation for Nazi gestures and racist chanting.

It is disappointing that the police tolerated these displays, despite the racist exhibition by Bulgaria’s fans in its recent match against England.
Ohio man who threatened Jewish Community Center to remain in custody
An Ohio man facing federal charges for making threats against the Youngstown Jewish Community Center in a video posted on social media will remain in custody, a federal judge ruled.

The Jewish community is not safe from James Reardon of New Middletown, Ohio, US District Court for the Northern District of Ohio Judge Patricia Gaughan ruled on Tuesday.

Reardon, 20, will remain in Mahoning County jail, the Youngstown NBC affiliate WFMJ reported.

Reardon was indicted last month on two counts in US District Court for using a firearm while making threats against the Youngstown JCC. He pleaded not guilty in August to charges of telecommunications harassment and aggravated menacing in municipal court in Struthers, near Youngstown.
French president inaugurates Jewish center in Paris
French President Emmanuel Macron has given a speech inaugurating the European Judaism Center in Paris.

The 5,000-square-meter (53,820-square-foot) space that was opened Tuesday is a place of exchange and boasts a synagogue with 600 seats and an exhibition center.

Macron said "this center is an act of faith in the future."

It comes as part of a broader fight against rising anti-Semitism in France, the country with the largest Jewish population in Western Europe and one with a painful story for Jews during the Holocaust.

The center took over a decade to realize and was also given impetus because of extremist attacks in France, such as the killings at a Jewish school in Toulouse in 2012 and a hostage-taking at a Jewish supermarket in Paris in 2015.
Pre-Military Program Helps Israelis with Disabilities

The Golan Heights to Tokyo: Disabled IDF vets bike Israel
For the past few days, some 250 cyclists have been pedaling up and down the roads of northern Israel. The ride up Mount Hermon and to the Golan Heights, and circle the Sea of Galilee. They cover 60 kilometers (37 miles) a day, or about 300 kilometers (186 miles) in an intense week of riding, especially when we consider that about 160 of them are disabled IDF veterans with various complex injuries.

The rides are part of a project called Courage in Motion, which has been active for the past 12 years. It was launched by Beit Halochem Canada, Aid to Disabled Veterans of Israel, a branch of the Zahal [IDF] Disabled Veterans Organization. Every year, a group of 100 Canadian and American Jews visit Israel for a week of tough riding "for our soldiers."

They meet the wounded warriors, listen to their tales of battle, and experience Israel with their legs and feet.

Amit Hasdai is one of the standout Israeli cyclists. In 2001, he sustained serious wounds to his neck in a shooting in Qalqilya, which left half of his lower body paralyzed. That doesn't stop him from riding seven days a week, competitively. He has his eyes on competing in the Tokyo Olympics in 2020.

On Saturdays, Hasdai says, his wife, Galit, and his children join him for training.

"I couldn't do it without them," he says.

Hasdai, who uses a handcycle, enjoys every minute of his riding. Often, he leaves the North American visitors behind.

His next goal is the Olympics. He still doesn't know whether he will join the Israeli delegation to the Paralympics, but he is doing everything he can to make that dream a reality.
Israeli tech companies raise $2.24 billion in third quarter; most since 2013
Israeli tech companies raised $2.24 billion in 142 deals in the third quarter of 2019, marking both the highest amount raised and the largest number of deals made in any quarter since 2013.

The amount of funding raised represented an increase of 37 percent over the same quarter last year, according to the IVC Research Center.

There were 13 deals of over $50 million, which together accounted for 57% of the total capital raised. The six largest deals, each over $100 million, totaled $841 million, and were led by $200 million for the cybersecurity firm Cybereason.

The number of deals made by early stage companies, still in the seed and research and development stages, was 30% higher than in the third quarter of 2018, although revenue growth companies received more funding.

The researchers noted, however, that the proportion of capital invested in early stage companies has been declining over the past year, pointing to a move away from more risky investments.
Nailed it: Rare 1,400-year-old iron hammer found by family at Sanhedrin site
A family volunteering at excavations at Usha, the first location of the Sanhedrin following the Bar Kochba revolt, discovered a previously unknown iron industry at the site and a rare 1,400-year-old iron hammer, according to an Israel Antiquities Authority press release on Wednesday.

According to Israel Antiquities Authority excavation co-director Yair Amitzur, the Western Galilee’s Usha was a Jewish settlement from circa 135 CE when the Sanhedrin, or rabbinical court, moved there from Yavne, where it had initially settled after the fall of the Second Temple. From the second century CE to circa the sixth — the middle of the Byzantine era — generations of Jews lived at Usha.

Following the abandonment of the site by Jews, it was settled by Christian residents and artifacts attesting to their settlement have been found at the site, Amitzur said.

“All the stories that we are familiar with from the written sources are being exposed in the field,” he said in an accompanying Hebrew-language IAA video.

In a cute twist, the discovery by a family from Tur’an in the Lower Galilee of a Byzantine-era hammer and nails occurred during the Succot holiday, when the excavation site near modern Kiryat Ata was open to the public for two days. There are many popular Hebrew songs written for the holiday in which Jews building temporary shelters, called sukkahs, take up hammers and nails.
Baha’is mark bicentenary of prophet at his Haifa tomb
Baha’is on Tuesday and Wednesday mark 200 years since the birth of their prophet with a ceremony planned at their world center, in the northern Israeli port city of Haifa.

The Baha’i faith, with millions of followers worldwide, emerged in Persia in the second half of the 19th century.

An offshoot of Shia Islam, it reveres Siyyid Ali Muhammad — known as “The Bab” — who foretold the coming of another messenger from God “who would usher in an age of peace and justice,” according to the Baha’i website.

On Tuesday, believers were to walk in procession around the Bab’s golden-domed mausoleum in the Baha’i center’s famous terraced gardens.

“Some pilgrims will be dressed in their country’s traditional dress,” said deputy secretary general of the Baha’i International Community Carmel Irandoust.

The community says it currently has more than six million believers worldwide.

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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 18 years and 38,000 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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