Sunday, July 05, 2020

unhrc

 

The countries that voted for China’s “national security law” that imposes harsh penalties for Hong Kong residents protesting against China include every Arab country  in the UN Human Rights Council.

These include Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Kuwait, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Syria, the UAE and Yemen – and “Palestine.”

Iran, Sudan, South Sudan and Pakistan also supported China.

Ken Roth of Human Rights Watch mentioned the Arab countries that are HRW’s usual targets, but of course didn’t include “Palestine”in his list of “dictators and thugs.”

I see no outcry in Arabic media about voting against freedom, even in the relatively liberal Lebanese media.

One takeaway is obvious: The UN, even its purported “human rights” arm, is not a moral arbiter of anything. Nations vote according to their own self-interests and not for any reasons that are remotely related to human rights.

But the other lesson is that even “human rights” groups are loathe to criticize the UN Human Rights Council because it usually aligns with their anti-US, anti-Israel mindset and if they publicly criticize it then they cannot point to its many anti-Israel resolutions as proof of Israel’s supposed immorality, which they love to do as Ken Roth himself did over the past couple of weeks.

  • Sunday, July 05, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon
farr

 

On the Fourth of July, music mogul Diddy hosted a heaviily-promoted speech by racist Louis Farrakhan on his “Revolt TV” YouTube channel.

Here are some of the things he said about Jews in this speech.

Farrakhan made up a story that in the Talmud, Jews have a tradition of poisoning people and if the victim survives the poison, then you are really from God. A Jewish woman poisoned Mohammad with poisoned meat and he survived, although he was weakened. Farrakhan then said that he too was poisoned with radioactive seeds that Jews placed within him to kill him, but he also survived although weaker. “If the Jews are saying that we did try to kill him and you know I'm alive then what should that tell you about who I am?”, he said to applause, comparing himself to Mohammed.

Speaking about ADL leader Jonathan Greenblatt, Farrakhan said, “Mr. Greenblatt, you are Satan. Those of you that say that you’re Jews, I will not even give you the honor of calling you a Jew. You’re not a Jew… you’re Satan and it’s my job now to pull the cover off of Satan. So every Muslim, when you see Satan pick up a stone as we do in Mecca.”

He went on a bizarre rant about Alan Dershowitz which sounds like a threat against all Jews: “So Mr. Dershowitz,  if you bring the vaccine and say you're gonna bring your army to force us to take it, once you try to force us, that's a declaration of war on all of us. You only have this one life; fight like hell to keep it and fight like hell to destroy those whose heart and mind is to destroy you and take your life from you.”

In this clip, Farrakhan says that Jews who believe in the Talmud (which is all Orthodox and most Conservative Jews, and even non-religious Jews quote it) are trying to kill him and if they succeed, it will mean they will all be destroyed:

How is this not incitement?

Here are a couple of clips where Farrakhan insisted he isn’t against Jews, but only against imposters – which conveniently happen to be pretty much every Jew.

Everyone is so scared of calling out Farrakhan’s antisemitism because they don’t want to look like they are against black people. Yet excusing and coddling bigotry is what is insulting to black people - and every other human being.

If Jews are allowed to be insulted and demeaned in a speech promoted by the most respected and successful black person, then Diddy isn’t a fighter for justice – he is an enabler of bigotry.

Saturday, July 04, 2020

From Ian:

Why Jordan Shields Terrorist Ahlam Tamimi From Extradition to US
A small group of Republican members of Congress have been trying to right a great wrong by demanding that Jordan extradite Sbarro massacre mastermind Ahlam Tamimi to the United States. But as a proud and unrepentant murderer of Jews — including two American citizens — Ahlam Tamimi has many admirers, and it unfortunately seems that the Jordanian government has no interest in turning over this unrepentant terrorist.

This case not only reveals a lot about the continuing glorification of terrorism against Israel in the Middle East, but it also provides a depressing example that appeasing extremists is perhaps all too often regarded as prudent policy and diplomacy.

Tamimi, who planned and facilitated the 2001 suicide bombing that killed 15 people, including 7 children, and injured 130 at a Sbarro restaurant in Jerusalem, has enjoyed the life of a celebrity ever since she was released in the controversial 2011 deal Israel struck in order to free Hamas hostage Gilad Shalit.

As reported on the Islamist website MEMO, Ahlam’s release was a reason to celebrate for the Tamimi clan of the West Bank village Nabi Saleh — not least because another terrorist member of the clan was also released, and the murderous couple got married in Amman, Jordan. Right after her release, Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal met with her in Cairo, and when she arrived in Jordan, she received a hero’s welcome, including a reception in her honor at the Jordanian Law Court building.

Tamimi’s status as a Palestinian “hero” made it easy for her to start a TV career hosting a show that glorified Palestinian terrorists, and she reportedly got to travel “widely and often within Jordan and to numerous Arab countries — including repeat visits to Algeria, Kuwait, Lebanon, Qatar, Tunisia and Yemen — speaking to school and university groups, trade unions, and on TV — boasting of her central role in the massacre, of the high death toll and of her intention to kill Jewish children.”

Some three years ago, when the US first demanded Tamimi’s extradition after it was announced that she was on the FBI’s list of Most Wanted Terrorists, she responded by proudly displaying her extremist Islamist views in an interview with a site that promotes the ideology of the Jordanian Muslim Brotherhood. She declared that, “Our war with the Zionist enemy is an ideological war from the days of the Prophet Muhammad to now.”

Obviously enough, there were no “Zionists” in the days of Muhammad — which means that what Tamimi actually claims is that murderous Jew-hatred is an integral part of Islam. Needless to say, this is a view that would normally be rejected as Islamophobic, and it would surely appall the Muslim faith leaders who have recently taken welcome steps to “foster a new era in Muslim-Jewish relations.”

Families of US Troops Killed in Jordan Call for Cutting Aid Until Terrorists Extradited
The families of three US soldiers killed several years ago in Jordan are calling on Congress to suspend foreign aid to the US ally unless the country extradites their killer, as well as another terrorist wanted for a 2001 attack in Israel.

Marek al-Tuwayha is serving a life sentence for murdering the members of the US Special Forces on Nov. 4, 2016 at King Faisal Air Base. However, the AP recently reported that he might be released in 20 years.

The families of the men—Staff Sgt. Matthew Lewellen of Missouri, Staff Sgt. Kevin McEnroe of Arizona and Staff Sgt. James Moriarty of Texas—are also taking part in an effort to push for the extradition of Ahlam Tamimi from Jordan, where she has found safe haven.

Tamimi was convicted in Israel of helping mastermind the 2001 Sbarro pizzeria bombing in Jerusalem in which 15 civilians were killed, including seven children. Two of the victims were American: Malka Chana (Malki) Roth, 15, and Shoshana Yehudit (Judy) Greenbaum, 31, who was pregnant.

At the time, Tamimi was a 20-year-old female university student. She has never exhibited remorse for the attack.

In a statement, the families said King Abdullah of Jordan “should publicly apologize for the murders of their sons and explain why his country harbors a terrorist that killed Americans in the pizzeria bombing.”
JPost Editorial: Ayman Odeh chose to show solidarity with a terrorist - editorial
What Odeh did is not just disappointing, it is also counterproductive. The people who voted for Odeh’s Joint List, and helped it obtain 15 seats in the Knesset, did not cast their ballot so the leader of the party could participate in conferences with known terrorists. They want him and his fellow Knesset members to work to improve their lives: to create jobs, to secure funding to upgrade infrastructure – roads, schools, hospitals and more – and to steer their community through the economic and health crisis caused by the novel coronavirus.

Let’s not forget that Arouri is one of the founding commanders of the Izzadin al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas’s military wing, and is said to be one of the key people – from his home in Turkey – trying to promote terrorist attacks in the West Bank. The US State Department has put a $5 million reward for anyone who provides information that leads to his capture.

This is the person Odeh wants to be associated with? A known terrorist behind dozens of attacks against Israel who is wanted by the IDF and the US?

Knesset Speaker Yariv Levin (Likud) said he would not tolerate an MK participating in “an event in support of terror with the worst of Israel’s enemies.”

It is unclear what Levin can actually do, but Odeh does need to decide where he stands and who he is as a lawmaker and a citizen of the State of Israel. He can, and should, of course, be able to openly show solidarity with the Palestinian people and also criticize Israel – all day and all night if he’d like – for its actions in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. But, participating in a conference with a known terrorist like Arouri though is a line that Odeh should have known not to cross.

Israel has a long way to go for its Arab citizens to feel like they are treated as equals, and for the words of the declaration of independence, which called for coexistence in this land, to come true.

Arabs needs to be seen as equal citizens and be treated as equal citizens. For too long Arab-Israelis have been demonized and portrayed as a fifth column. They have been spoken about by the Likud and Blue and White as illegitimate political partners.

What Odeh did is wrong, but what Israel is doing is also not helping. If we want Arabs to stand with Israel and not with Hamas, they have to feel like everyone here has a shared destiny. That has yet to happen.
An American prophet in Berlin
He could’ve gotten moralistic, saying: “How can a country that murdered six million Jews now cowtow to a government intent on killing 6 million more?” “How dare you tell Jews to hide?” “We lost countless American lives and treasure because of your historic bloody power lust. Pay up!” He kept it classy, focusing on the mutual interest inherent in the policies he promoted, whether banning Hezbollah or the Iranian airline, Mahan Air. The Germans were spared guilt.

Nothing could explain Grenell’s fearlessness except to say he is a God-fearing man. He was more like a prophet preaching to the Germans before they bring upon themselves great disaster yet again by courting dictatorships like Iran, Russia and China.

The Hebrew prophets spoke in their own style unique to their upbringing and temperament. Amos, for example, spoke in simple metaphors taken from his life as a farmer. Isaiah, a prince, used more aristocratic metaphors. Grenell spoke as an American born in a small town in Michigan using not parables, but sharp tweets. Of course, he didn’t only conduct diplomacy over Twitter. A masterful professional and Harvard graduate, he activated and united the embassy to lobby for American interests utilizing all formal and informal channels at their disposal, but publicly, he communicated in the language and method of the people – social media – because he is one of the people.

Over time, his name came up again for other positions, and I kept tweeting #BerlinNeedsGrenell, until he got promoted as Acting Director of Intelligence. Americans now needed him. In just a few months, through long overdue declassifications and administrative reforms, he transformed the American Intelligence Community into one that is more effective, transparent and accountable to the people. What he started in Germany continued in Washington: bringing information that taxpayers had a right to know directly to them.

In the tradition of fools harassing a prophet, Der Spiegel contrasted him to previous ambassadors in one of their many hit pieces.

In Berlin, the representatives of Germany’s most important ally usually have the easiest jobs. Many previous US ambassadors were major political and social figures in the capital, enjoying excellent connections to the Chancellery and federal ministries, and playing host to the most powerful and influential personalities in Germany.

Barack Obama’s ambassador, Philip Murphy, invited longtime adversaries Helmut Kohl and Merkel to his dining room in 2012 for discreet talks aimed at reducing the tensions between them. By the time his tenure was over after four years, he had made so many friends he had to rent out the Olympic Stadium for his goodbye party.

Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, we couldn’t throw a goodbye party for “Ric,” as he tells people to call him. Maybe it wouldn’t have been filled with power-players congratulating each other on how they’re all Masters of the Universe, but the Olympic Stadium wouldn’t have been able to fill the genuine love, appreciation, and deep respect that every day, decent, pro-American Germans felt for one of the most effective, honest, ethical and real ambassadors that Germany – and beyond – has ever known.

Grenell will greatly be missed. I don’t know what I’ll do now for upcoming Fourth of July. But I know that Berlin doesn’t need Grenell anymore. #TheWorldNeedsGrenell


Friday, July 03, 2020

From Ian:

Jonathan S. Tobin: A tale of 2 revolutions, and why America must be celebrated
In the view of those cheering on the efforts of the Black Lives Matter movement, this July 4 will be one less of celebration than of soul-searching and reassessment. Thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, the normal festivities were always going to be muted. But the brutal death of George Floyd on May 25 sent angry crowds of sometimes peaceful protesters into the streets seeking to topple monuments of not just Confederates, but also the nation's Founding Fathers and a host of other historical figures who don't measure up to the woke standards of the demonstrators.

As such, it is a deeply ominous sign that some advocates of the BLM movement, which has always been linked to anti-Semitic intersectional claims, are sometimes diverging from their usual arguments about racism to attacking Israel with blood libels. This week, one BLM march up Washington, D.C.'s Constitution Avenue, demonstrated its solidarity with a Palestinian "Day of Rage" by chanting, "Israel, we know you murder children too."

No doubt, some will claim that these chants are not typical of BLM sentiments, even though the movement has always supported smears of Israel. Others might say that among them were "some very fine people," a conclusion that few accepted when that sentiment was put forward by US President Donald Trump about those opposed to the removal of Confederate statues during a neo-Nazi march in August 2017 in Charlottesville, Va.

But at the heart of the marches is contempt for the basic idea that the American experiment in democracy – flawed though it is – is a uniquely successful effort in expanding the realm of liberty. As efforts like The New York Times' "1619 Project" that has served as an ideological guide to the protesters' vision of America as an incorrigibly racist nation made plain, the goal of the BLM movement is not so much to reform the police or cleanse the country of hate as it is to recast the entire national narrative that has provided a haven for religious minorities like Jews.

As such, it may be an appropriate moment for Americans to think seriously about their origins as a nation and to ask not only whether this 1619 narrative is true, but to ponder as well why we should still be cheering the memory of 1776.

The "1619 Project" is so named because in the view of the Times, the arrival of the first black slaves in North America was the true beginning of American nationhood, and the revolution in 1776 was fought mainly to preserve slavery. Once we set aside this inherently mendacious premise of that account, it's important to understand that the American Revolution succeeded primarily because it was rooted in a belief in the rule of law.

It's always the right time to talk about anti-Semitism, especially during Black Lives Matter protests
Recent weeks have seen a heated discussion among American Jews about whether there is a “right time” to talk about anti-Semitism. And if so, does now qualify, since our country is going through a reckoning over racism?

American Jews want to show solidarity with peaceful protesters, but should that include support for the Black Lives Matter organization, which called Israel an apartheid state, supported the boycott, divestment, and sanctions movement, and accused Israel of genocide in its 2016 manifesto? And should Jews remain silent while Israel is falsely accused of teaching brutal tactics to police, or when protests include “vandalism to Jewish businesses and synagogues” in Los Angeles, chants of “From the river to the sea” in Brooklyn, and slanderous accusations that Israel murders children in Washington, D.C.?

There was, by contrast, no such debate during Christians United for Israel's annual summit this week. Conducted virtually for the first time because of the pandemic, CUFI’s national conference included numerous speakers determined to speak up for Zion’s sake, as the book of Isaiah urges.

One message that echoed across the summit was that it’s always the right time to shine a light on anti-Semitism. Speakers encouraged the summit’s tens of thousands of participants to educate themselves about anti-Semitism. That education would include not only learning from dark, historic moments such as the Holocaust, but also how to recognize the anti-Semitism that hides in plain sight today, on college campuses and in the halls of Congress.

During a panel discussion on anti-Semitism, Holocaust survivor Irving Roth explained that words “direct people to the truth.” Words matter because they lead to actions, whether they are atrocities like the Holocaust or the possibility of a better future. Roth was joined by CUFI Middle East analyst Kasim Hafeez, who was raised as a radical Islamist in the United Kingdom and reflected: “I love this country, and it saddens me. There’s this horrible moment of seeing a parallel of what I saw in the U.K. with anti-Semitism. ... It doesn’t just roll in on a truck one day. It’s gradual. There’s little hurdles and steps; it creeps in. People fall asleep at the wheel. It’s almost ignored. There’s this attitude of, ‘It could be worse. At least we’re not the situation in Europe.’” Hafeez warned that ignoring those small changes means losing the chance to halt anti-Semitism while there is still time. Hafeez encouraged participants, “You can make the difference.”

Former Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, who signed the nation’s first anti-BDS bill into law as governor of South Carolina, told participants, “We must keep telling the truth about Israel.” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo talked about realizing in law school “how anti-Israel some parts of academia can be” and that “Israel needs to be protected from BDS.” Among Pompeo’s examples of the importance of truth-telling was his simple statement, “Anti-Zionism is anti-Semitism.”
Gangsters vs. Nazis
Emboldened by Hitler’s rise to power in Germany in 1933, and fueled by the Great Depression, anti-Semitism increased throughout the United States, and over 100 anti-Semitic organizations sprung up across the country. They had names like the Friends of the New Germany (Nazi Bund), the Silver Shirts, Defenders of the Christian Faith, the Christian Front, and the Knights of the White Camellia, among others. Protected by the constitution’s First Amendment, they held public rallies, paraded through the streets in their uniforms carrying Nazi flags, published scurrilous magazines, and openly flaunted their hatred for Jews. American Jews were intimidated and frightened. Fearful of stirring up even more anti-Jewish sentiment, the American Jewish establishment’s response was often tentative and cautionary. They worried that what happened in Germany, home to Europe’s elite Jewish community, could easily happen in America. One group of American Jews who had no compunctions about meeting the anti-Semites head-on were Jewish gangsters. Not bound by conventional rules and constitutional legalities, they took direct and violent action against the Jew haters.

Nazi Bund rallies in New York City in the late 1930s created a terrible dilemma for the city’s Jewish leaders. With 20,000 members, the Nazi Bund was the largest anti-Semitic group in the nation. They organized large public rallies and marched to drumbeats wearing brown shirts and swastikas, and carrying Nazi flags. Jewish leaders wanted the meetings stopped, but could not do so legally. Nathan Perlman, a judge and former Republican congressman, was one Jewish leader who believed that the Jews should demonstrate more militancy. In 1935, he surreptitiously contacted Meyer Lansky, a leading organized crime figure born on the 4th of July, and asked him to help. Lansky related to me what followed.

Perlman assured Lansky that money and legal assistance would be put at his disposal. The only stipulation was that no Nazis be killed. They could be beaten up, but not terminated. Lansky reluctantly agreed. No killing. Always very sensitive about anti-Semitism, Lansky was acutely aware of what the Nazis were doing to Jews. “I was a Jew and I felt for those Jews in Europe who were suffering,” he said. “They were my brothers.” Lansky refused the judge’s offer of money and assistance, but he did make one request. He asked Perlman to ensure that after he went into action he would not be criticized by the Jewish press. The judge promised to do what he could.

Lansky rounded up some of his tough associates and went around New York disrupting Nazi meetings. Young Jews not connected to him or the rackets also volunteered to help, and Lansky and others taught them how to use their fists and handle themselves in a fight. Lansky’s crews worked very professionally. Nazi arms, legs, and ribs were broken and skulls cracked, but no one died. The attacks continued for more than a year. And Lansky earned quite a reputation for doing this work.

Lansky later described to an Israeli journalist one of the onslaughts in Yorkville, the German neighborhood in northeast Manhattan:

“We got there in the evening and found several hundred people dressed in their brown shirts. The stage was decorated with a swastika and pictures of Hitler. The speaker started ranting. There were only 15 of us, but we went into action. We attacked them in the hall and threw some of them out the windows. There were fist fights all over the place. Most of the Nazis panicked and ran out. We chased them and beat them up, and some of them were out of action for months. Yes it was violence. We wanted to teach them a lesson. We wanted to show them that Jews would not always sit back and accept insults.”

  • Friday, July 03, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon
tweets week

 

A lot of nearly-viral tweets this week, feel free to retweet them!

  • Friday, July 03, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon

From the UN’s OCHA-OPT report for the last two weeks of June:

An eight-month-old baby boy, who needed a heart surgery at an Israeli hospital, could not exit Gaza and died on 18 June. Since 21 May, the PA has not accepted or transferred applications for exit permits from Gaza to the Israeli authorities, as a response to Israel’s plan to annex parts of the West Bank. Since then, only few patients referred for medical treatment in the West Bank or Israel managed to exit Gaza, with the help of NGOs or international agencies.

Not only does the Palestinian Authority stop these medical transfers, but so do Palestinian NGOs – the NGOs that the UN refers to are Israeli NGOs.

As is always the case, Israel and Israelis care more about Palestinian lives than Palestinians do. The PLO and PA and Fatah and Hamas are eager to sacrifice their own people for nebulous “principles,” in this case the “principle” of not talking to Jews to save Palestinian lives.

The world remains unmoved by the cruelty that Palestinians show to their own people, because the false narrative of Israel hating Palestinians is too strong to allow counterexamples to be widely spread.

From Ian:

Report: Israeli cyberattack caused Iran nuclear site fire, F35s hit missile base
Israel was responsible for two blasts at Iranian facilities — one related to uranium enrichment, the other for missile production — over the past week, a Kuwaiti newspaper reported Friday.

The Al-Jareeda daily cited an unnamed senior source as saying that an Israeli cyberattack caused a fire and explosion at the largely underground Natanz nuclear enrichment facility in the predawn hours of Thursday morning.

According to the source, this was expected to set back Iran’s nuclear enrichment program by approximately two months.

The newspaper also reported that last Friday Israeli F-35 stealth fighter jets bombed a site located in the area of Parchin, which is believed to house a missile production complex — an area of particular concern for the Jewish state, in light of the large number and increasing sophistication of missiles and rockets in the arsenals of Iranian proxies, notably Lebanon’s Hezbollah.

Neither of these claims were confirmed by Israeli officials, who have been mum on the reports.

The reported Israeli strikes followed an alleged Iranian attempt to hack into Israel’s water infrastructure in April, an effort that was thwarted by Israeli cyber defenses, but if successful could have introduced dangerous levels of chlorine into the Israeli water supply and otherwise seriously interrupted the flow of water throughout the country.

Ultimately, the alleged Iranian cyberattack caused minimal issues, according to Israeli officials.

Terrorists Convicted for Antisemitic Murder of Daniel Pearl in Pakistan Could Go Free This Year
Four men sentenced to life imprisonment in Pakistan for the antisemitic murder of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl in 2002 could go free later this year, following a court ruling earlier this week that paved the way for their imminent release.

British citizen Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh — who masterminded Pearl’s kidnapping and execution by beheading in the city of Karachi — saw his conviction for murder overturned by the High Court in the province of Sindh in April. His three collaborators — Fahad Nasim Ahmed, Syed Salman Saqib and Sheikh Muhammad Adil — were also exonerated by the same court.

That ruling was upheld by Pakistan’s Supreme Court on Wednesday, triggering concerns that the four men would be released immediately.

But on Thursday, Hasan Sehtoo — superintendent of the Karachi Central Prison — said that the four would remain in custody until Sept. 30 under a law that allowed authorities to detain a suspect for up to a year. Sehtoo said that the release of the convicted men would threaten public safety.

Pearl’s parents have filed an appeal with the Pakistani Supreme Court in another attempt to reverse the Sindh court’s shock decision in April. In an interview with CBS News this week, Pearl’s father, Judea, denounced the decision as a “travesty of justice.”

Pearl remarked that “one theory is that somebody tried to take advantage of the corona situation. Assuming that no one will pay attention to this decision.”

He continued: “And, evidently, we did pay attention.”

  • Friday, July 03, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon

Noura Erekat, an assistant professor at Rutgers University who was most recently seen exploiting her car-ramming cousin within a day of his death as an excuse to sell copies of her anti-Israel book, has created a ridiculous video for the far left video outlet Now This where she lies about Israel’s goals with extending sovereignty.

This one section of the video tells you what you need to know about Erekat’s interest in truth as well as her“human rights” credentials.

 

noura

 

The “Deal of the Century” is better known as “steal of the century” and the “apartheid plan?” Where? Only in the fever swamps of anti-Israel propaganda that Erekat inhabits. I follow the topic quite closely and have never heard it called either of those things, and even Arabic media routinely call it the “Deal of the Century.”

But beyond that, look at the stock footage she chose when showing the words “the apartheid plan.”

Yup – religious Jews. Jews who have nothing to do with Trump or the deal, nothing to do with extending sovereignty, Jews who for all we know are walking in Brooklyn.

Not a Tel Aviv beach. Not IDF soldiers. No, she chose to show Orthodox Jews while flashing the word “APARTHEID” on the screen, so her viewers would associate Jews with gross human rigths violations.

Yes, that is antisemitic. And this entire video is propaganda that a Rutgers instructor is not the least bit embarrassed to spread.

(h/t kweansmom)

  • Friday, July 03, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon

A press release from the Emirates News Agency:

ABU DHABI, 2nd July, 2020 (WAM) -- Group 42 (G42), a leading technology company based in Abu Dhabi, announced today it has signed Memoranda of Understanding with Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, Rafael, and Israel Aerospace Industries, IAI, two leading Israeli technology companies, to explore collaborations in the research and development of effective solutions to combat SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19 disease.

Executives from each company took part in a signing ceremony held via video conference between the UAE and Israel.

During the event, they discussed how they might capitalise on their respective expertise and technologies to develop cutting-edge solutions and medical initiatives that would benefit, not only the populations of both countries, but humanity as a whole.

This joint initiative brings together some of the most active players in the Covid-19 response in the region and aims to leverage their combined knowledge, human and technological assets, and other resources to accelerate the delivery of breakthrough solutions to safeguard the public health and support the global fight against the pandemic.

G42 is nominally an independent company specializing in artificial intelligence. However, its website makes clear that it works closely with, and aligns with, the strategic direction of the Abu Dhabi government.

g42

 

While Israeli defense contractors have indeed pivoted to fighting the pandemic, they are still defense contractors –and the UAE chose those companies specifically to partner with. These are the very companies that Israel haters call out as violators of human rights.

My guess is that this agreement was made with a view to the future where Israel and Gulf countries will cooperate on military technology. After all, G42 could have chosen to partner with Israeli universities or pharmaceutical companies, and instead chose not one but two major military suppliers.

The UAE not only doesn’t care about what the pro-Palestinian crowd thinks, it is highlighting this agreement with the Israeli defense contractors  in its media.

This rapprochement between formerly bitter enemies shows what peace will look like and how we will get there. National decisions are driven by self-interest and Israel has a lot more to offer than Palestinians do.

  • Friday, July 03, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon

Eb33cuOXkAAT_e3

It’s easy to see the sheer volume of anti-Israel material online and in social media and feel like we are losing.

But when you step back, you can see that the reality is that Israel is winning in every conceivable field.

While the haters scream about "occupation" and "annexation," Israel continues to grow, get stronger and become more indispensable to the region and the world.

Israel is strong militarily, economically and in innovation. Both Western and third-world nations want to be like Israel. They want to learn from Israel. It really is a "light unto nations."

Israel is getting closer and closer to the Arab Gulf nations, as they realize that the Palestinian cause is a self-created dead end. While Palestinians make more and more demands on their Arab “brethren,”  Israel offers solutions.

Israel has become a powerhouse in desalination, de-desertification, and water conservation in a dry region. It has a lot to offer to its neighbors. They know this. What can Palestinians offer them? Forcing them to defend terror to the West that they are trying to get closer to?

Israel is the most stable nation in the region, and when Arabs are afraid of Iran hey are turning to Israel to be their protector as well, at least implicitly.

Israel is becoming an exporter of energy, now selling natural gas to Egypt and Jordan.

The moderate Arab nations need Israel, and their support of Palestinians is lip service.

When you look at anti-Israel demonstrations, they do not reflect anything close to reality. Israel is stronger than ever - and more liberal than the socialists leading the hate train.

The volume of the Israel-haters’ sound equipment as they robotically chant “From the river to the sea….”  isn't a reflection of success. The chants and pro-violence messages are the screams of frustration that they cannot destroy the Jewish state they hate so much.

(based a thread on Twitter)

Thursday, July 02, 2020

From Ian:

Why is the ADL aligning itself with Al Sharpton?
My public relations agency has represented a myriad of interests promoting minority communities. In fact, over the years we have represented a number of individuals who are significant donors to the Anti-Defamation League, the latest organization working together with Sharpton. Civil rights issues in the African American community are indeed serious; and they should be taken seriously by leaders of the Jewish community. Indeed, it is important for there to be a united front among those in other minority communities in calling out racism in any way it may manifest itself. It's incumbent upon us as Jews to call out racism - and I've been personally heartened by the participation of members of the Jewish community in some of the peaceful demonstrations that have taken place.

But that does not and should not ever take place at the expense of promoting anti-Semites or bigots of any stripe. Indeed we are doing a disservice to the African American community by propping up someone like Al Sharpton by doing so. There are many decent and impressive civil rights activists within the African American community who deserve our support, and certainly deserve a platform. Al Sharpton is not one of them.

For those that don't know, Al Sharpton has a long and storied history of Jew hatred, that has been well documented over the years. Sharpton played a central role in provoking the rioters in Crown Heights back in the summer of 1991. Riots that led to the death of Yankel Rosenbaum. "If the Jews want to get it on, tell them to pin their Yarmulkas back and come over...," said Sharpton, during that three day stretch of riots.

Sharpton never properly offered genuine remorse for this sort of rhetoric. And his actual participation and fomenting of violence in the form of these riots is something that the Jewish community can never forget. Sharpton's list of anti-Jewish screeds go well beyond the rhetoric he employed during those riots. Sharpton has referred to Jews in the past as "diamond merchants," "white interlopers," and "Jew bastards."

It is not therefore unreasonable to ask why the ADL and Jonathan Greenblatt are proudly collaborating with Sharpton in the #StopHateforProfit campaign. This isn't about the merits of the campaign. It's about a figure who no Jewish lay leader ought to be working with when it comes to issues of civil rights. It's not only a disservice to the Jewish community; but a slap in the face to the African American community as well. The African American community deserves better.
U.S. Deputy Anti-Semitism Envoy: Anti-Zionism Is Anti-Semitism
The "coronavirus conspiracy theory [is] a modern-day blood libel, where Jews or the State of Israel is blamed for the pandemic," U.S. deputy anti-Semitism envoy Ellie Cohanim told Jewish leaders on Monday. "It is not being spread by the usual bad actors on the dark web or elsewhere, but by government officials spreading the lies - from Turkey, the Palestinian Authority and Iran."

Cohanim, who fled Iran with her family during the 1979 revolution, said she had learned two lessons from her family's experience: that even societies welcoming or hospitable to Jews, like Iran was under the Shah, "can suddenly flip overnight"; and that Jews can "never underestimate the threat of anti-Semitism."

Asked about the possibility that extension of sovereignty by Israel to parts of the West Bank may lead to increases in anti-Semitism, she said, "Just the fact that American Jewry is nervous about this shows that we have been conditioned to feel the anti-Semitism in our bones." She noted that no other country is subjected to the same kind of scrutiny when they make decisions for their populace.

Asked about the notion that one can be anti-Zionist and not anti-Semitic, Cohanim said U.S. policy is that "anti-Zionism is anti-Semitism. Full stop." She added that when people criticize other countries for action they have taken, that doesn't lead to a discussion about the country's right to exist.


Ruthie Blum: The 'right' kind of gay pride
Israeli Public Security Minister Amir Ohana – a proud member of the LGBTQ community and equally proud member of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud Party – has said that "being attracted to men doesn't mean you have to believe in creating a Palestinian state."

Ohana made that statement during an interview with The New York Times a year ago in June, when Netanyahu appointed him interim justice minister.

Ohana – a lawyer, a major in the reserves and a veteran of the Shin Bet security agency – is hated by the Left for the policies that he promotes and the bills that he has drafted. Among the latter is the Basic Law: Israel as the Nation State of the Jewish People.

But it is Ohana's view of judiciary overreach that has earned him the greatest wrath among his detractors. When he was first appointed justice minister, he made a statement to the effect that not all Supreme Court decisions should be honored.

In the wake of the ensuing uproar from the disingenuous "defenders of democracy"– those who don't believe in the separation of powers as long as the judges that they deem politically correct are occupying the bench –Channel 12's Amit Segal asked Ohana if he really meant what he had said.

"Yes," Ohana answered, quipping, "the 'supreme' consideration must be to safeguard the lives of [Israeli] citizens."

Nor did Ohana falter when Segal challenged him to contradict himself in relation to the Supreme Court's liberalism towards gays is concerned. Ohana – who lives in Tel Aviv with his partner, Alon Hadad, and their two children – smiled and shook his head.

The most important strides in LGBTQ rights, he replied, were made in the Knesset – the legislative body, not in the courts. The point he was trying to drive home is that the business of enacting laws is the job of elected parliamentarians, not judges appointed by committees comprising their cronies.

  • Thursday, July 02, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon
Last night, someone tweeted:


At first, this seems pretty straightforward -- and accurate.

After all, you would expect it would take someone who is actually familiar with Zionism to really understand it and besides -- the 'definition' of Zionism among the general population is going to be influenced by the "Zionism is Racism" crowd.

But that is not how people on Twitter saw it -- and I am talking about the reaction from Jews and non-Jews sympathetic to Israel.

I'm not even criticizing individual comments; I'm just pointing this out as a phenomenon.

So instead of stopping there, here are some of the reactions.
Note, responses by Rafaella Gunz, who started the thread, are indicated by "RG"
Not necessarily [and away we go...]

As I said on this thread yesterday, I know people who aren’t Jewish but definitely get it. Your tweet is insulting to them which I hope is not your intention. We need all the friends we can get.

RG: They get it because they speak to Jews. I'm not talking about them. I'm talking about goyim who make up definitions of it being about stealing land and killing people.

I don’t think you should generalise like that, some of us have been well taught

RG: I said "probably." And I'm referring to goyim who make up definitions about it being about ethnic cleansing or land stealing. If that doesn't apply to you, the tweet wasn't about you.

What do you mean "probably"?

RG: Probably means probably.

Probably wrong, and definitely irrelevant.

What about if that definition comes from a Clown? And he/she/it could be a Noahide? Or, also maybe he could be like me, right now. Absolutely drunk? How much, bad/wrong it could be that definition my dear?

I'm a Gentile. I believe in Israel's right to exist with secure borders without qualification. Are you going to cancel me?

I’m a Zionist & I understand Zionism but I’m not a Jew. Your comment saddens me.

What’s the definition?

RG: The belief of Jewish self-determination in our indiginous homeland

You can't just kill other people who live there.

RG: Thaaats not in the definition. Thanks for proving my point.

You might as well say all Palestinians are terrorists which clearly they’re not- I say that as a Jew before you all pile in! But in all seriousness, and as I keep repeating; if people study, research history, they’re entitled to form an understanding of Zionism. Don’t diminish friends

Defining Zionism is as problematic and controversial as defining antisemitism. That should not come as a surprise. But just as Jews should be able to define what qualifies as Jew-hatred when we are attacked, we should also be respected enough to define our own movement to reclaim and live on our indigenous land -- land that both European (Roman) and Muslim invaders conquered and colonized.

Fat. Chance.

One of the concerns expressed is an appeal to an "open tent" -- that we should do whatever is in our power to avoid turning away people who are potential allies.

Yes, there is some merit in the importance of not turning friends away, but we are talking here about a tweet, and even at that, a tweet that was qualified by the word probably. And even then, all that was being said is that some non-Jews are probably wrong. Not probably evil.

Other groups can say outsiders don't get it. Just now, I did a search on the phrase "white people just don't get it" and it got 112,000 hits. When I did a search on "white people don't get it," it got 837,000 hits.

I understand the sentiment, but I don't think it should stop us from admitting the truth -- and doing our part to educate Jew and non-Jew alike on what Zionism is.

Also, such a tweet is not an attack, let alone a threat to "cancel" someone. Jews did not go rioting in the streets when they were attacked on the streets of New York City and shot in their shuls. We have been working within the system. That claim borders on the "straw man" argument that criticism of Israel is accused of being antisemitic. Demonization of Israel is antisemitic, criticism is not. Not our fault that these days people don't know the difference.

And if that 'saddens' them, that is OK. It is not personal, it is a reflection of the reality of the growing power of antisemites in the Democratic Party and among antisemitic groups that recognize their growing impunity to attack Jews and Israel with vicious labels and lies. If anything, we need to speak out more forcefully about that, not less.

Yes, people who "study and research history" are entitled to form their own opinions. But is that supposed to mean that if they don't do the study and research, they are not entitled to their own opinions? The fact is on the one hand that people do not base their opinions on research, and on the other hand, even if they do their research -- that doesn't mean it is "correct" or that I have to agree with them.

Rafaella Gunz makes it clear that she was referring to non-Jews who actually twist and distort the meaning of Zionism. It is an important distinction.

The bottom line, it is great for Jews -- and Israel -- to have allies, but that doesn't necessarily mean that those allies fully understand us or our love of Israel in the same way that we do. Maybe some do. It doesn't matter.

Other groups have the right to have their history, culture and homeland respected -- regardless of one's ability to identify with them.

Jews deserve no less.

And we should say so.

  • Thursday, July 02, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon

Our weekly column from the humor site PreOccupied Territory.

Check out their Facebook page.

At Our 'Day Of Rage' Gathering We Almost Had A Minyan To Say Kaddish For Terrorists

by Yonah Lieberman, If Not Now

Yonah LiebermanNew York, July 3 - Yesterday's series of protests in solidarity with Palestine and against Israeli annexation of Palestinian land attracted so many attendees that at our best-attended event, in Philadelphia, we could almost cobble together the ten-person quorum necessary for the Mourner's Kaddish in honor of Palestinians who died trying to kill Jews. It was a smashing success.

Our organization aims to smash the monopoly that certain established groups have long exercised over perceived authority to speak for American Jews, and we do that by showing how out-of-step those mouthpieces for Israeli expansionism and Apartheid are with the bulk of American Jews. The fact that we could muster as many as two demonstrators for some of our Day of Rage rallies demonstrates to those stodgy mainstreamers just who has the numbers behind them, and who can make the more credible claim to speak for American Jewry.

The direction of the trend is clear, but that does not mean this accomplishment signals we can rest on our laurels. Much remains for us to achieve - keep setting higher and higher goals, or, as our Palestinian allies have always put it, keep increasing your demands after the other side has already made concessions, because concessions are a sign of weakness, so if they'll grant you autonomy over part of the territory from which you want to cleanse them, keep pushing and eventually you'll push them into the sea as you originally intended more than seventy years ago. It's not a perfect analogy to our situation, but I appreciate the poetry and obvious resonance of it.

Some of those in attendance at the Philadelphia rally argued for reciting the Mourner's Kaddish without the full complement of ten, but more circumspect heads prevailed, with the contention that if we want to portray ourselves as Jewish - echoing, as our name does, the admonitions of a famous Jewish sage - we ought to give at least some nod toward Jewish tradition. At our New York event, our activists woke up Chuck Schumer with Klezmer music, for example, the rationale being that only evoking a period when Jews were powerless and their security depended on the good will of cynical rulers who only saw them as political and economic pawns can we convey the compelling justice of our position. Wouldn't it be grand to bring that period back?

Someone also pointed out that Schumer is already opposed to annexation, but the rest of our groups shouted her down for implying we targeted Schumer just because he's Jewish. We did choose him for that reason, but you're not supposed to say that out loud.

From Ian:

Parents of Jerusalem Terror Victim Launch Petition Demanding Jordan Extradite Bombing Mastermind
The parents of the one of the victims of a suicide bombing at a Jerusalem pizza restaurant in August 2001 have launched an online petition demanding that the Kingdom of Jordan extradite the atrocity’s main planner, who has been residing in Amman since she was released in a prisoner exchange with the Israeli government a decade ago.

“Ahlam Tamimi today lives in Jordan where she is a television personality and icon of the kingdom’s social media and public opinion,” stated the petition posted by Arnold and Frimet Roth — whose 15-year-old daughter Malki was killed in the Aug. 9, 2001 bomb attack inside a Sbarro pizzeria in downtown Jerusalem.

Fourteen other people were killed in the bombing, among them a pregnant woman, while 130 more were wounded in an attack timed to coincide with the height of the lunch hour.

The bomber — a supporter of the Islamist Hamas movement — was driven to the restaurant by Tamimi, who participated in the planning of the atrocity and disguised herself as a Jewish tourist on the day of the attack.

The US Justice Department unveiled terrorism charges against Tamimi in 2017 and formally notified Jordan of its request that she be extradited to face trial.

Jordan has consistently ruled out the prospect of deporting Tamimi — a stance that has piqued some American legislators, seven of whom wrote to the Jordanian ambassador in Washington, DC, in April in protest.
Obama Judge Frees 'Palestinian' Al Qaeda Backer Who Recruited Dirty Bomb Terrorist
Not long after 9/11, Adham Amin Hassoun, a Lebanese 'Palestinian' computer programmer, was arrested at a Florida traffic stop. The arrest had been a long time coming.

Hassoun had entered the United States on a student visa in 1989 and quickly got involved in Islamic terrorism. By the early 90s, the FBI had noticed Hassoun because of his conversations with the Blind Sheikh, the Islamic cleric at the center of the World Trade Center bombing and even larger terror plots targeting New York City landmarks.

The Blind Sheikh was the leader of Gamaa Islamiya or the Islamic Group, a Muslim Brotherhood splinter terrorist group responsible for horrifying atrocities like the brutal Luxor Massacre of foreign tourists, including women and children, where the Islamists had tortured young girls, cut off ears and noses, and left a note praising Islam inside a disemboweled body.

Despite, or perhaps, because of their atrocities, the Islamic Group won the support of leftist advocates like Lynne Stewart: the National Lawyers Guild member who was convicted of helping the Blind Sheikh relay guidance to his terror group from prison.

"The FBI has identified Hassoun as a focal point for communications among persons associated with AGAI and with the international radical fundamentalist community. He has been a major fundraiser for extremist Muslim causes in Chechnya and Bosnia and, since as early as 1994, is believed to have recruited... 'mujahideen,' for those conflicts." the FBI's counterterrorism section chief had warned.

According to the FBI report, Hassoun had been a member of Gamaa Islamiya. By the second half of the decade, he had moved on to Al Qaeda acting as a registered agent for the

Benevolence International Foundation. Despite its ‘benevolent’ name, BIF was a front for Al Qaeda and its name originated with an organization run by Bin Laden’s brother-in-law.

After the Saudis shut down BIF, it headed to Florida, where Hassoun helped out.

Hassoun had become quite fond of Osama bin Laden. “May Allah protect him,” he told one of his collaborators during a phone conversation after the Al Qaeda leader had threatened to carry out attacks against America in a CNN interview.

Experts at Hassoun’s trial later noted that the Islamist had called Bin Laden,

“Abu Abdullah”, a name usually used by Al Qaeda members and close supporters.

  • Thursday, July 02, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon

Twitter just suspended the Elder of Ziyon account…apparently for antisemitism!

twits

 

I’m appealing, but please tweet to @Twitter and @TwitterSupport to ask them to restore my account!


UPDATE: Thanks for all the support and people who tweeted, I'm back up although it takes a couple of days for things to get back to normal (restoring followers, and I'm not seeing new tweets from those I follow yet.)

  • Thursday, July 02, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon

Yesterday’s “Day of Rage” demonstrations were ostensibly against Israel’s plans to “annex” parts of Judea and Samaria. The chants, however, told a different story: the message was to destroy Israel and replace it with a Palestinian state.

A Jewish state with an Arab minority given equal rights is “apartheid,” but an Arab state with a Jewish minority – which, history shows, would inevitably be as oppressed as Jews have been in every single Arab and Muslim state - is “justice.”

Israel wanting to set its borders in a way that 97% of Palestinian Arabs can still live in autonomy in their own self-declared state is “stealing land.” A Palestinian state “from the river to the sea”  where there is no Jewish autonomy is perfectly fine.

If Israel wanting to set its borders for its security is “apartheid,” then what is this PLO logo?


  • Thursday, July 02, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon

Some scenes from yesterday’s “Day of Rage” rallies across America that glorified and incited to violence.

Salt Lake City’s rally had support for an airplane hijacker saying that “resistance” (i.e., terrorism) is justified.

Eb5ZecAU8AENVw0

 

The Brooklyn rally, in a heavily Muslim neighborhood, chanted support for “intifada” and had some direct incitement for American Muslims to burn down police precincts and cars.

In San Francisco, the crowd was told that of course Palestinians can murder Jews to protect “their land,” just as a mother can protect her children.

  • Thursday, July 02, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon

A reporter in Portland’s KOIN News, Jenny Young,  came under fire when she tweeted a very accurate statement.

H4SV2VHRCNBSTENVGFEDD4FSSM

She described a speaker at a “Day of Rage” rally as  “openly anti-Zionist”, and the BDS movement as “an anti-Semitic movement that’s been admonished by U.S. lawmakers.”

All of this is perfectly true.

There was a huge outcry from anti-Israel activists, of course,  and the tweet was taken down after an hour.

All of this is depressingly familiar.

But here’s the part that is really upsetting:

Bob Horenstein, spokesman for the Jewish Federation of Greater Portland, said he felt the reporter’s tweet was an oversimplification of the issue, but said he also took exception with some other organizations’ characterization of the BDS movement. He said the Jewish Federation of Greater Portland had made their stance on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict clear.

"We came out with a statement opposing unilateral annexation of the West Bank. We support a two-state solution," he said.

He said while the Jewish Federation of Greater Portland doesn’t believe everyone who supports the BDS movement is anti-Semitic, he said many people believe the effects of the BDS movement harm Jewish people.

He also noted that while some local Black Lives Matter chapters have come out in support of the BDS movement, most around the country have not taken a stand on the issue.

The newspaper already had quoted multiple Muslim leaders who all supported BDS and denounced Israel and Zionists. (It referred to them as “civil rights organizations.”) They wanted to hear from the other side for a token comment. And instead of a full-throated expression of support for Israel and against antisemitism and BDS, Mr. Horenstein hedged and dodged and declared how reasonable many Jews are in drawing fine lines between supporting Israel and opposing sovereignty over Judea and Samaria (which the reporter didn’t ask about) and how some people who want to see the Jewish state destroyed are perfectly fine people who aren’t antisemitic at all, oh no, they just want to boycott Jewish businesses and entertainers and academics from Israel while not boycotting Israeli Arab entertainers or businesses or academics.

He doesn’t even know what he is talking about with Black Lives Matter – it is a national BLM decision to support BDS, not local. If Horenstein wanted to make distinctions, he could have distinguished between the Black Lives Matter movement and supporting black lives.

It is possible that the paper selectively quoted Horenstein. He has explicitly called out antisemitism on the Left. But the way that this reads is that both sides are against the decisions of the Israeli government, both sides don’t consider BDS to be antisemitic  - and the Jews are wishy-washy while the Muslims are passionate.

The tweet should have been defended by the Jewish community. BDS has been recognized as antisemitic not only by US lawmakers but by European leaders as well, and it fits the IHRA definition of antisemitism.

Furthermore, Jenny Young should be supported by the Jewish community for what she wrote instead of getting hung out to dry.

UPDATE: It turns out that the reporter, Jayati Ramakrishnan, did cherry pick Horenstein's comments. A reader who is the head of another Jewish organization reached out to the Portland Federation and their president/CEO Marc Blattner categorically denounced the piece and said that with no ambiguity that the Jewish Federation of Greater Portland is "100% against BDS." They contacted the journalist who refused to correct the piece. Apologies to the Federation. 


Wednesday, July 01, 2020

From Ian:

How Blindness to Anti-Semitism Threatens Parties and Movements
It is this modern politicization of anti-Semitism that ensured that Rebecca Long-Bailey, who would have been instantly awake to a racist jibe directed at any other minority group, could mistake the anti-Semitism in the interview for benign criticism of a state she doesn't much care for.

The belief that every injustice can be traced to Israeli evil was perhaps best demonstrated by another British Labour politician (now mercifully retired), Clare Short, who claimed during a pro-Palestinian conference in Brussels in 2007 that not only was Israel "much worse than the original apartheid state," but that it "undermines the international community's reaction to global warming." Given Short's conclusion that global warming could "end the human race," one can readily connect the dots about how loathsome and threatening Israel must be, and what should be done with it. For good measure, Israel has also been accused of causing domestic violence in Gaza.

More recently, Black Lives Matter, a group ostensibly formed to combat racism, adopted in 2016 a manifesto that, amidst the discourse on incarceration rates, police conduct and racial profiling, also accuses Israel of being an "apartheid state" and committing "genocide" of the Palestinians—whose population throughout the Holy Land has undergone a continuous and spectacular increase since the advent of modern Zionism in the 19th century. The British arm of the movement then paused its tweets on black lives in order to shoot off an anti-Israel medley, including offering its weighty legal opinion that Israel is in breach of international law and lamenting the "gagging" of attacks on Zionism.

The campaign to attach Zionism to every grievance and injustice has its origins in Stalin's deteriorating mind during the last years of his reign. It became the basis for official Soviet anti-Zionism and remains as a vestige in far-left political movements today. But in a sense, it runs even deeper than that. It is the hallmark of an irrational, fanatical mind, incapable of grasping the nuance and complexity of life. Just as traditional anti-Semitism brought ruin and misery, anti-Zionism will corrupt noble movements and worthy causes unless it is finally stamped out.
Why does ‘The Forward’ continue to promote falsehoods about Israel?
CAMERA, the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting and Analysis, recently prompted three corrections from The Forward. All involved one of the publication’s contributing columnists, Muhammad Shehada.

In one case, he had falsely claimed that, in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, officials in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip “have a shortage of the chemicals necessary to make disinfectants, including hydrogen peroxide and chlorine,” because “Israel bans both from entering Gaza under the pretext of ‘dual-use’ items—items they say can also be used for building weapons.”

The correction noted that “an earlier version of this piece stated that Israel bans hydrogen peroxide and chlorine. Israel does not ban either; it restricts hydrogen peroxide. We sincerely regret the error.”

Two other corrections that were made just this month pertained to factual misstatements made nearly a year ago in an August 28, 2019 opinion column. In those cases, notably, the publication did not even indicate that they had made any changes.

But these were just a few of the many false claims that Shehada has made over time in The Forward, a national Jewish media outlet that began publication at the end of the 19th century as a Yiddish-language socialist newspaper. And, as described below, some of those that remain uncorrected were of far greater magnitude.

Shehada is on the leadership team at the NGO EuroMediterranean Human Rights Monitor, an organization whose board of trustees is chaired by Richard Falk. Falk was condemned in 2011 by then-British Prime Minister David Cameron for publishing an anti-Semitic cartoon, and in 2012 by the U.K. Foreign Office “for providing a cover endorsement for an anti-Semitic tract called ‘The Wandering Who’ that compared Jews to Nazis.”

Falk has also embraced 9/11 conspiracy theories. In addition to writing for The Forward, which he has been doing regularly since January 2018, Shehada has written for The New Arab, Al Jazeera, Vice and others.
Douglas Murray: Britain’s woke police forces have lost their way
In the last few weeks, around 140 police officers have been injured in this country; 27 in just one night last week in Brixton. A day later, the force’s LGBT+ network could be found tweeting their support for asexual people. Perhaps the thugs who assaulted their colleagues in Brixton would have been mollified had they known how supportive the constabulary is of the asexuals in their midst? Or perhaps – and I simply put the possibility out there – such efforts by all branches of the British police do not in fact show how much the police have got with the beat, but just makes things harder for the policemen and women on the actual beat?

When you cast your mind back across recent months what are your most distinctive memories of the British constabulary? Dancing for public likes in TikTok videos? Skateboarding down major London thoroughfares closed down by climate extremists? Officers “taking the knee” before Black Lives Matter activists shortly before some of those same officers had to flee from the protesters who had turned violent?

All of these sights are indelibly linked in the minds of everybody who has seen them. But in the minds of a portion of the public they meld with another vision of the British police. A vision which numerous commentators and politicians have helped to exaggerate in recent weeks.

In the wake of the death of George Floyd in Minnesota, politicians and Left-wing pundits in the UK as much as in the US sought to make some grand strategic play off the back of that appalling incident. In the US, various commentators argued that the Minnesota incident was not isolated, but part of a broader problem of US policing and of American society as a whole. There is a debate to be had about certain aspects of US policing, certainly. But inevitably there were those in our own country who tried to make political gains by claiming the same situation exists here. These people – not least the organisers of BLM UK – wish to present the British police and the American police as being the same and the history of American racism synonymous with all British history.

It is a very dangerous game that such opportunists are playing. Some responsibility at least for the assaults on police officers that have occurred since the first BLM UK protests must be laid at their door. A week before the assault on police in Hackney, the Labour MP Dawn Butler stood in the House of Commons and told the Conservative government that it needed to “get its knee off the neck of the Black, African, Caribbean, Asian and minority ethnic community in this country.” It was a disgraceful intervention, that went off almost without censure.

Vic Rosenthal's weekly column

 


Recently the European Union announced that it would reopen its borders to visitors from some other countries. Israel was not on the list (neither was the US). Many Israelis reacted indignantly, but objectively our Coronavirus situation is not good.

On June 30, Israel marked the highest number of new cases of Coronavirus since the beginning of the pandemic, with 803 reported. After succeeding to extinguish the first wave with an economy-crushing lockdown, the re-opening was marred by some strategic mistakes, for which we are beginning to pay the price. Here is a graph of new cases per day:

2020-07-01 Israel Coronavirus 25,244 Cases and 320 Deaths

 

Although there has been a recent increase in the daily number of tests done, a Health Ministry employee said on 16 June that “the proportion of positive tests was higher than before,” and therefore the increase in reported new cases was indicative of a new wave of infection.

I don’t pretend to be an expert, but some of the reasons were obvious. In the educational system: it was necessary to reopen the schools, because Israelis have a lot of children, and it’s very difficult to get people back to work when there’s no solution for child care. The usual safety valve for parents, retired grandparents, was not available due to the danger to them from the disease. The first mistake was to open all grades almost at once. It would have been possible to open the lower grades first, which would have freed the parents to work, while reducing the risk. What followed was a sharp spike in the 10-19 year age group and a smaller one in the 0-9 group at the start of the second wave in early June.

The Education Ministry devised a plan that would separate students and teachers in the schools into “capsules” which would be isolated from one another, students would sit 2 meters apart, masks would be required for students and teachers, and so on. The second mistake was not following the plan. I am not sure if it proved unworkable, or if teachers and administrators didn’t take it seriously enough, as some said. But in many schools, compliance was lax. Schools in which cases of Corona occurred were closed, but the damage was done.

Coronavirus transmission is believed to be primarily by droplets released when an infected person sneezes, coughs, talks, or sings. These droplets may remain in the air for a few minutes. It is also thought that the more viral particles a person ingests, the more likely they are to become sick, although it is not clear if this affects the severity of the illness. Transmission outdoors where droplets may be blown away or dehydrated by breezes and diluted in a larger volume of air, is much less likely than in a confined indoor space. Masks may not be fine enough to prevent viral particles from passing through, but they do greatly impede the much larger droplets; they are useful both when worn by the person who is infected and by others nearby. There is also the possibility of droplets impinging on a person’s eyes, so a face shield is useful in addition to a mask.

Israelis love “life cycle events” like circumcisions, bar mitzvahs, weddings, and so forth. Big weddings are the rule, often held in large event halls. There are even websites that help you decide how much money to give according to the type of event, your relationship to the principals, and so on. These events are often held indoors, and the Health Ministry allowed event halls to reopen when the first wave subsided. There are guidelines on the number of people allowed at an event, but they were liberal. Religious services, which were initially sharply restricted, were reopened with more relaxed guidelines. These actions may have been premature, and some restrictions have been re-imposed.

What everyone wants to do is to find ways to protect the population without destroying the economy. The best way to do that (at least, until a vaccine or effective treatment is developed) is to identify each and every sick person and isolate them before they can infect others. This requires a) the ability to do enough tests, b) a rapid turnaround of test results so that it is possible to identify someone as a carrier of the disease before they can infect others, and c) trained people to investigate the sources of infection so that those exposed can be tested.
While the number of tests has been increasing, the turnaround time has been poor. In the early part of the second wave, when many cases were detected in schools, the labs were unable to keep up with the tests. As far as investigations are concerned the Health Ministry reports a serious shortage of personnel trained to do this; and it has been accused of poor management as well. They have just hired several hundred medical students and paramedics for this function; it’s mysterious why this took so long.

The public, which was relatively disciplined during the first wave, seems to have decided that “the Corona is over,” and that masks are best worn around the chin, to be moved up when a police officer, who might give them a ticket worth 500 Shekels ($146), is nearby. The latest news is that specific cities and neighborhoods will be placed on lockdown in order to try to break the chain of infection.

PM Netanyahu got good marks for his handling of the crisis during the first wave, when he made good decisions such as closing the country’s borders quickly. The removal of restrictions, however, has not been handled so well. Employment has not snapped back – unemployment stands at near 21% – and the epidemic has moved into a second wave, which could be as bad or worse than the first one. Some industries, like tourism and performing arts, have been devastated and little has been done to help them. Of course, everything isn’t his responsibility, but he is known for micromanaging what he believes are areas of importance, and many Israelis feel that he doesn’t believe that they are of importance.

It isn’t helping that after the scandal of the obscenely bloated unity government of 36 ministers and 9 deputy ministers, and after the unity negotiations produced unprecedented perks for the Prime Minister and his alternate, Bibi got the Knesset to pass legislation to exempt him from taxes on work done on his private residence by the government. He did not improve his image when he remarked that although he deserved the tax break, his “timing was wrong.” No kidding.

***

Israel’s approach to the Corona has been very – Israeli. First, we tried to overcome it by brute force. Then we became overconfident. And now, hopefully, we’ll try to be smart.

  • Wednesday, July 01, 2020
  • Elder of Ziyon

Students Supporting Israel is an impressive grassroots campus pro-Israel organization that has grown a great deal, with a philosophy I can get behind.

Last night I interviewed its co-founder and president where we discussed that things are like for Zionist students and how SSI helps them.

From Ian:

PMW: The legal basis for applying Israeli law to Judea, Samaria and the Jordan Valley
Introduction

Israel has announced that it will apply Israeli civilian law to areas of Judea, Samaria and the Jordan Valley, (the area renamed “the West Bank” by Jordan after 1948), on or after July 1, 2020. Whereas this is seen by some as a hurried political decision, the more fundamental question is, does Israel have the right to do this under international law?

The answer to this question is a clear – Yes.

The League of Nations allocated all of Israel, including these areas, for the purpose of establishing the Jewish National Home in 1922. No other internationally recognized instrument has superseded that decision;
The Arab countries and most of the Arabs resident in British Mandate controlled Palestine, rejected the 1947 UN partition plan, so it has no relevance today under international law.
No other country has a legal claim to that territory;
No state border has ever separated Judea, Samaria and the Jordan Valley from the rest of Israel;
The application of Israeli law to Judea, Samaria and the Jordan Valley should not be referred to as “Annexation”, since annexation is the acquisition of territory by one State “at the expense of another State”.

Accordingly, Israel has the right under international law to Israel apply its civilian law to these areas.
Misconceptions of ‘annexation’ show a concerning level of ignorance
The last few weeks have seen a herd mentality take hold and misrepresentations about Israel abound. There has been fevered discussion over Israel’s proposed application of civilian law to parts of Area C in the West Bank. The move is consistently misrepresented as “annexation” and a “violation” of international law. Both allegations are false. The misconceptions betray a concerning level of ignorance. Most importantly, they stand in the way of any informed debate about the pros and the cons of the move.

There is an urgent need to realise that what is being considered is a change to the internal administrative legal framework in certain parts of Area C of the West Bank, which would replace military law with the civilian law that applies throughout Israel. The existing framework was intended to be temporary, but it has been dragged out for 53 years, through decades of failed negotiations. It is regarded as an inadequate and antiquated administration, comprising a confusing patchwork of Ottoman, British Mandate, Jordanian law and aspects of international humanitarian law.

The clamour of allegations that this proposal would violate international law rejects fundamental principles of international law and deploys double standards against Israel. Any legal analysis of the status of the disputed territory cannot ignore the basic principle that a country cannot be said to “occupy” territory that does not belong to another sovereign and to which it has a credible claim of title. The UK certainly does not recognise Palestinian sovereignty over the territory. Israel has the strongest legal claim to the territory, based on a fundamental principle of international law governing the formation of new states and the delineation of their boundaries.

The universal rule for determining borders for emerging states, ‘uti possideitis juris’, dictates that they are established with the administrative boundaries of the prior administrative entity. Israel was preceded by the ‘Mandate for Palestine’, which was established by the League of Nations and administered by Britain. As the only state to emerge from the Mandate in 1948, international law dictates that Israel inherited the Mandate’s administrative boundaries. This principle provides that the territory concerned has been under Israeli sovereignty since Israel’s independence, even during Jordan’s occupation of the territory between 1948 and 1967. While the territory is politically disputed, the legal principle is clear. The term “annexation” is fundamentally misconceived.


The case against a binational state
I believe that it is possible for multicultural countries to succeed, but it is incredibly difficult to say the least, which is why most multicultural states do not succeed. It requires making the vast majority of a country's citizens believe in a national identity that supersedes any racial, ethnic, or religious identity. The only country I know that has been able to do this successfully and last through the centuries is Switzerland, which is largely a country of three distinct ethno-linguistic groups of Germans, French, and Italians. The Swiss Confederation has largely avoided the violence and strife that plagues so many other multicultural states. But as I understand Swiss history, the cantons that make up today's Swiss Confederation united for the sake of collective security to protect their freedom against neighboring imperial powers. Thus, over time, the Swiss have been able to forge a collective identity that has endured to this day.

A similar, but not identical, scenario has played out in Canada. The provinces that make up Canada united largely due to the threat faced by revolutionary America. Nevertheless, the unity of Canada has always remained tenuous, especially in regards to the majority French-speaking province of Quebec, in which many people yearn for independence. There is also the ongoing tension between different regions of the vast country as the needs of each region differ significantly from one another.

Quebec, and to a lesser extent, western Canada, want to preserve what they perceive as their distinct identities. It remains to be seen whether or not Canada will continue to flourish, or if regional, ethnic, racial, and linguistic differences will tear it apart. Moreover, it is almost impossible to export Canadian-style multiculturalism to the Holy Land, where the Jewish and Palestinian peoples have two very distinct narratives and national ambitions, and where there is no sense that a binational arrangement for the sake of collective security is needed.

If Jews and Palestinians were forced to live with each other in the same country, the results would be disastrous and would probably result in Jews being victims of another holocaust. Once such a state was formed, the Jewish people would quickly become a minority, as millions of Palestinian so-called refugees would stream into the country, thereby creating a Palestinian majority, who would attempt to erase any trace of Jewish heritage in the Holy Land. At best, we the Jewish people would be reduced to a persecuted minority, just like many of the persecuted minorities in Muslim countries. At worst, we would be exterminated.

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