Monday, January 13, 2020

From Ian:

Which came first – Jeopardy or ‘Palestinians’?
Trebek never figured to be at the center of controversy. Generations grew up with him. He’s been a comforting presence; the older brother always there with a pat on the back.

He may well be the most trusted, and the most beloved public personality in America. All that, through some 36 years on the job. That’s something.

He is originally from Canada. Maybe that explains it; they turn them out polite and non-confrontational over there, eh?

Alas, his term may be coming to an end, due to poor health.

We will assume that his legacy won’t be touched by the current tempest, and that the show itself will move forward intact, since, as we noted, from March 30, 1964.

Well now, that makes Jeopardy older and more “ancient” than the “Palestinians” – doesn’t it.

They were designated as a “people” for the first time, by the Arab League, June 2, 1964, when the League approved the PLO, and an Egyptian, Arafat, as its leader.

Before that, before 1948, the Palestinians were the Jews living there, including the Jewish leadership, and that means David Ben-Gurion as well, as all the records will show, from The New York Times to the BBC. We can understand the current “Palestinians” trying so hard to concoct for themselves a history and a heritage, because they have neither.

In an earlier column, we presented the case for the Beatles, how even they preceded today’s “Palestinians” as a “people” on the world stage.

That was Feb. 7, 1964, on Ed Sullivan’s Toast of the Town.

Other than all that, it is good to know that terrorist/Jihadist leaders are watching Jeopardy. Very good. Might learn something.

Let’s Talk About Colonialism
The word “colonialism” brings to mind many things. Most notably, it is a term associated with European imperialist adventures in the “New World” and all of the attendant horrors that followed. It invokes, in specie, mental images of white-European settlers, armed with Bibles and bayonets, dominating “less advanced” (and typically non-white) indigenous populations, leading to some of the worst human rights atrocities in history – the massacre at Wounded Knee, the African slave trade, the racial segregation policies of South Africa, the reservation schools, and the extirpation of countless native cultures throughout the world.

And since nearly all of these and other more infamous examples of colonialism were specifically white-European, the concept itself has come to be seen as coterminous with white supremacism. In other words, it is perceived as an exclusively European vice, whereas the colonial histories of non-white nations are (in almost all cases) ignored or summarily dismissed. It is under this rubric, and in conjunction with the postmodern progressive fixation on racial justice (and the very recent re-formulation of Ashkenazi Jews as “white-European”), that Zionism has been cast as a “colonial” movement, while the ongoing Arab effort to reverse the gains made by the indigenous Jewish people in 1948 is championed as “anti-colonialism”. Many have even gone as far as to describe Israel as the “last remaining settler colony in existence”.

Zionism, however, is not colonialism, but the polar opposite thereof. To understand why this is so, it is important to clearly define both of these concepts.

Colonialism is, at a baseline level, the practice of expropriating foreign territory and incorporating it into a metropole, or “mother country” (e.g. the British Crown). This process typically entails occupying these new lands with settlers, suppressing local indigenous populations, and enforcing the tongue, culture, and lifestyle of the metropole on the aforementioned indigenous inhabitants. It is, to quote Wikipedia (which I am loathe to do), the relationship of domination of an indigenous population by foreign invaders, with the latter ruling in pursuit of their own interests.

It can also, in a more rudimentary sense, mean “building a town or a city”. That is how Ze’ev Jabotinsky used it in his famous Iron Wall essay, which anti-Zionists were quick to pounce upon. But for the purpose of this article, I will use it in the former sense.
PALESTINE POSTS: AN EYEWITNESS ACCOUNT OF THE BIRTH OF ISRAEL By Daniel S. Chertoff is an amazing book. Chertoff found a collection of his father's correspondence written between 1947-1949 when Mordecai S. Chertoff (his father) was here witnessing the end of the British Mandate and the beginning of the State of Israel.

Mordecai Chertoff came to "Palestine" officially to study in Hebrew University but was quickly drafted to the staff of the English newspaper, The Palestine Post, now called The Jerusalem Post. In addition, he joined the Haganah, and later after the establishment of the State of Israel, he became a citizen and was subsequently drafted into the IDF.

The letters Daniel found were from his father to the family in America and letters sent to him from them. Besides the correspondence, Daniel had an incomplete memoir of the time, his father had once started writing. Besides all that, there are many of the articles Mordecai had written for the Post and other publications. Daniel's job was to weave these all together along with a historical narrative informative enough for those less knowledgeable to follow and not too simplistic for those who already know the history. He did a very good job. I can recommend the book to all.

I had a personal need to read the book very carefully. My Uncle Izzy, Israel Shanks "Red" Shankman, was also here in Palestine-Israel at the time. He was in the Palyam, the naval branch of the Palmach as high level crew, medic plus, on some of the ships that defied the British in an attempt to bring Jewish immigrants to safety. It's very possible that they had been acquainted, though my uncle isn't mentioned. My uncle also left Israel for New York, around the same time.

Mordecai's letters are invaluable in describing what life was like in Jerusalem during the long, difficult siege. There was rationing, since water and food were almost impossible to find. The only road Jews could take to Jerusalem, for deliveries of all sorts, went through enemy Arab territory. Attacks were frequent. It's amazing that people survived on such small quantities, but they did.

Berenice, the Jewish Queen of Rome, and the Origins of Replacement Theory
The earliest example of the fear that Jews might overturn and replace the social order with their own people probably occurred in Rome during the first century CE. A circumstance arose that threatened Roman dominion over the Mediterranean world: The Flavian family line was in danger of being replaced through a Jewish takeover.

In 70 CE, the Roman Emperor Vespasian’s son, Titus, had defeated the Judean rebellion, destroying Jerusalem and the Second Temple. However, once victorious, he chose as his willing consort Berenice, the sister of Agrippa II, the former king of conquered Judaea. This choice was not so odd as it may sound: Berenice and her brother had opposed the Jewish revolt from the beginning. Along with the spoils of the Temple, Titus brought Berenice back to Rome, where, according to Cassius Dio (Roman History LXV 15), she lived with him as if she were his empress, exerting considerable power.

Some Romans were troubled by the romance of Titus and Berenice and spoke out against her. In her prior marriage to the king of Pontus, Berenice had required that he convert to Judaism and be circumcised. There was probably concern that Titus would be convinced to do the same. The result would be a Jewish emperor of Rome, in effect reversing the outcome of the Jewish War. Worse, Titus and Berenice’s children would be Jewish, ensuring that future emperors would be Jewish. In other words, the Roman Empire would be in Jewish hands.

Titus understood that consequence, and the necessity of preventing such an outcome. Indeed, preceding dynasties had also faced the charge of Judaizing the empire. Emperor Claudius, who preceded Titus by less than 20 years, had a visiting dignitary, Isidorus of Alexandria, executed for accusing him of being Jewish. A few years later, Nero, who ruled Rome until 68 CE, just two years before the Flavians, could not escape association with Jews. His wife was a “God-Fearer,” that is a person who engaged in some Jewish practices without converting. There was precedent, therefore, for both Titus’ romantic entanglement and the accusations that came with it.
Daniel Pipes: Will Arab anti-Zionism revive?
Exhibit A is the recent presidential election in Tunisia. Tunisia stands out as both the least anti-Zionist Arab country of decades past and today the one with the most open and democratic system; therefore, its election has outsized importance as an indicator.

To near-universal surprise, Kais Saied led both rounds of the election, winning 18% of the September vote in a field of 26 candidates, and triumphing in the October run-off with 73% of the votes. Surprise because Saied, 61, had spent his entire career as a professor of constitutional law and so had zero political experience; surprise because he is an unsightly, ram-rod, robotic figure with inconsistent, severe and eccentric views. His fast-talking but placid, and unusually formal Arabic make him an oddity. So, what propelled him out of the crowd of candidates to a massive victory?

Tunis-based Lamine Ghanmi found that Saied’s popularity “was bolstered by his fiery stance against Israel,” asserting that Tunisia is “in a state of war” with the Jewish state and calling normalization with it “a great treason.” Thousands celebrated his electoral victory by taking to the streets, raising the Palestinian flag, and calling for the destruction of Israel.

Others agree with this assessment. The Tunisian newspaper editor Assia Atrous finds that Saied “forcefully expressed his feeling towards the Palestinians and their nationalist struggle. That made a difference for him against his rival.” The academic Abdellatif Hanachi concurs: “The cause of Palestine was determining for him. It fundamentally changed the game.” Outside Tunisia, the Egyptian Islamist politician Osama Fathi Hammouda sees in Saied’s victory “a severe blow to Arab normalization with Israel.”

Although a willingness to accept Israel has trickled down in the Gulf Cooperation Council states, this shift has not traveled much further. So long as Sunni Arab elites see Israel as a useful, if discreet, ally against the real danger posed by Tehran, these anti-Zionist sentiments will be held in check. But when that commonality fades, old-fashioned Palestinian-style hatred of Israel could come roaring back, with miserable consequences.

That’s one more reason for Israelis, with American help, to close down the conflict by seeking victory, by causing the Palestinians to acknowledge their own defeat. When Palestinians give up, other Arabs will likely not long persist in their fury but eventually will give up, too.
The 10 Most Widely Read Middle East Forum Articles of 2019
Below are the ten most frequently viewed articles of 2019 in descending order.

#10 Anticipating Trump's "Deal of the Century" (April 9)
Middle East Forum President Daniel Pipes analyzes a stream of leaks about President Donald Trump's long-awaited "Deal of the Century" plan for Israeli-Palestinian peace to construct an outline of what it will likely entail. According to Pipes, it "boils down to a grand exchange: the Arab states recognize Israel and Israel recognizes Palestine, both with capital cities in Jerusalem." Accordingly, he concludes, the plan "repeats the great miscalculation of traditional Palestinian-Israeli diplomacy by asking too little of Arabs and too much of Israelis."

#9 Making Sense of Palestinian Logic (May 4)
Middle East Forum President Daniel Pipes discusses the Palestinian Authority's refusal to accept tax revenue it is owed by Israel unless Israel stops deducting the amount that the PA funnels to terrorists and their families – the so-called "pay to slay" program. The logic of this seemingly self-defeating move, according to Pipes, "boils down to blackmail: You Israelis are rich, strong, and happy, so we will make you miserable unless you give us or give us access to more money."

#8 Pakistan Flirts with a Strong Israel (September 7)
Ginsburg/Ingerman Writing Fellow Efraim Inbar discusses Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan's decision to allow the country's heavily-censored media to openly discuss the possibility of establishing diplomatic relations with Israel. According to Inbar, the move reflects declining global interest in Palestinian fortunes and the belief of Pakistani leaders that Israel carries weight in Washington.
Top Jewish Leader Highlights ‘Staggering Surge’ of Global Antisemitism in Remarks at US Congressional Hearing
Antisemitic expressions, harassment and violence “have surged in recent years to levels unseen since the mid-20th century, prompting Jewish communities worldwide to fear for their security, well-being, and their future in the countries in which they live as proud citizens,” a prominent US Jewish leader said at a congressional hearing on Capitol Hill this week.

“In the last six months alone, a staggering number of violent attacks directly targeting Jews — including the deadly massacres at synagogues in Halle, Germany on Yom Kippur, and in Monsey, New York just last month, on the seventh night of Hanukkah — have underscored the very real need for increased vigilance and security measures on the part of local and federal authorities,” Ronald Lauder — president of the New York-based World Jewish Congress (WJC) — told Wednesday’s session of the US Commission on International Freedom.

The commission, a bipartisan body, was holding a special hearing titled “Global Efforts to Counter Antisemitism.”

Lauder highlighted the launch in 2019 of the Special Envoys and Coordinators Combating Antisemitism (SECCA) forum where local, national and international officials exchange views, share best practices, and evaluate progress in the shared fight against antisemitism.

“Antisemitism is the oldest form of hatred,” Lauder reminded the commission, before concluding that “like all forms of xenophobia, antisemitism has no borders.”
Pistol permit requests rise in NY community after Hanukkah stabbing
The number of residents seeking to own handguns has risen sharply in a New York community shaken last month by a machete attack that injured five men during a Hanukkah celebration.

The Journal News reports 73 pistol permit applications have been filed with the Rockland County Clerk’s Office since the December 28 attack at a rabbi’s home in Monsey, a hamlet in the town of Ramapo northwest of New York City.

That compares to 51 applications the office received during the eight weeks prior to the stabbing, County Clerk Paul Piperato told the newspaper.

Sixty-eight of the new applications came from Ramapo residents, including 31 from Monsey.

“It’s definitely because of this incident,” Piperato told the newspaper, referring to the attack. “In some way, shape or form, they want to defend themselves.”
Where are African-American leaders condemning antisemitism?
So much for New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s claim that the antisemitism we are witnessing is mainly “right-wing.” So much for Representative Rashida Tlaib’s claim that the Jersey City attack was a case of “white supremacy.”

Where are the African-American community leaders, local and national, decrying this anti-Jewish violence perpetrated by members of their community? Where are the New York City Democratic representatives? Senator Charles Schumer has condemned the attacks as “pure evil” and called for a federal investigation into the attack, but why have we heard nothing, for example, from Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez?
Only last October, Ocasio-Cortez could be found absurdly accusing US President Donald Trump of antisemitism. Now, when confronted by actual antisemitic assaults in the streets of her own city, not a word is to be heard from her.

De Blasio’s observed “it’s not enough to condemn antisemitism — we have to confront it … The NYPD … will bring the perpetrators to justice.”
However, as the ultra-Orthodox Jewish newspaper, Vos Iz Neias, noted, “Mayor De Blasio’s policy has proved to be consistent: send out a Tweet (only sometimes). Arrest the perpetrators. Release them a few hours later back onto the streets ... The mayor cannot claim to be serious about eliminating antisemitic attacks in the city, while at the same time refusing to keep the perpetrators of these very crimes off the streets.”

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has been forthright and active, describing the Monsey attack as a case of “domestic terrorism” and issuing instructions to state police to increase patrols in Jewish neighborhoods across the state, but the silence from many other Democrats and African-African-American leaders remains alarming and symptomatic of the issue.

It would appear that attacks on Jews are viewed as serious and deserving of scrutiny and action only when committed by credentialed haters like white supremacists.
How we talk about African-American anti-Semitism matters
That problem has grown worse as black activists have embraced false intersectional theories that view Jews and Israel as on the other side of an intractable divide between oppressors and “people of color” even though the majority of Israelis can be described by the same phrase. There is nothing remotely in common between the struggle for civil rights in this country and the Palestinian war to destroy the only Jewish state on the planet.

Nor can the influence of hatemongers like Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, a group that has far more active followers and sympathizers than any of the white-supremacist groups, be denied.

Many in the Jewish community prefer to downplay these factors because they don’t fit into their preferred narrative about anti-Semitism – and of late, that US President Donald Trump has something to do with it. Others, like the Reform movement of Judaism, thinks the problem is Jewish racism, as Rabbi Jonah Pesner stated when successfully urging the denomination to support reparations for the descendants of African-American slaves. Such sentiments meld with those who prefer to blame the victims of the violence and see attacks on Jews as a natural reaction to gentrification or economic exploitation of blacks.

These fallacious arguments are sometimes rooted in the prejudicial attitudes many secular and non-Orthodox Jews have about the ultra-Orthodox. Nor is it out of line or racist to ask more African-American leaders to be outspoken in denouncing anti-Semitism in their communities and encourage programs, such as those promoted by the ADL, which will help young blacks see through the lies told by the Jew-haters.

Yet as much as we must resist the impulse to avoid criticizing black anti-Semitism because of their long history of oppression, the opposite is also true. It is equally important for those calling attention to black anti-Semitism to realize that Jews and blacks are not competing for victim status. Nor is it helpful or accurate to assume that minority communities are invariably hostile, or that common ground can’t still be found. This discussion can be derailed by insensitive or needlessly inflammatory rhetoric, even if the motives of those speaking out on the issue are not racist. How we discuss the reality of black anti-Semitism is as important as our willingness to acknowledge it.
African-American Brooklyn teens learn about Jews in Holocaust class
Though Naisha Couamin walks through a heavily Jewish neighborhood near her home in the East Flatbush section of Brooklyn most days, she had never actually talked to a Jewish person until recently.

The 17-year-old had plenty of questions about the Hasidic Jews who were her neighbors. She wondered why they wore distinctive clothing and why the men kept their side locks long. But a sense that the community was insular and concern about the language barrier — many Hasidic Jews in Brooklyn speak Yiddish better than English — kept her from inquiring.

“You always see Jewish people, they always had a secluded area, they were never with other people,” said Couamin. “You see they have their own school bus, their own ambulance, and I always wondered why.”

Couamin began to get some answers after enrolling in a Holocaust class at Bishop Loughlin Memorial High School, a majority African-American Catholic school in the Fort Greene section of Brooklyn. The class exposed her to lessons about the history of the Holocaust, including hours of recorded testimony from survivors. But it also gave her a chance to ask questions about Judaism she had never had a chance to before.

“A lot of our students live in Crown Heights and Williamsburg, on the borders of Orthodox Jewish communities, and they notice the friction between the two groups and they don’t understand why,” said William Mason, a social studies teacher who started the Holocaust class five years ago. “So they’ll have a lot of questions about Jewish culture and Jewish ideas.”
Ilhan Omar's sanctions hypocrisy
The bias of Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) revealed itself yet again this week, in the aftermath of the killing of Iranian general and archterrorist Qassem Soleimani. In her rush to condemn the US administration and President Donald Trump’s declaration of increased economic sanctions on Iran, she forgot that she approves of sanctions when it politically and personally suits her.

"This makes no sense," Omar exclaimed on Twitter. "Sanctions are economic warfare. They have already caused medical shortages and countless deaths in Iran. You cannot claim to want deescalation and then announce new sanctions with no clear goal. This is not a measured response!"

This was not the first time Omar has condemned US sanctions. When Trump threatened Turkey with sanctions in October, in response to Ankara’s incursion into northern Syria, Omar referred to it as "a humanitarian and geopolitical disaster."

In January 2019, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced sanctions on Venezuela in response to Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro not respecting the results of the election and turning over power to Juan Guaidó. Omar tweeted in response that "Trump’s new sanctions on Venezuela are nothing more than economic sabotage designed to force regime change by starving the very people we claim to be helping. … We should support dialogue, not a coup!"

So Omar openly sides with the dictator who stole an election and has destroyed his country and his people, but Trump is the bad guy.

Top UK Jewish Group Issues ‘Ten Pledges’ Labour Party Must Take to Regain Trust of British Jews
Britain’s leading Jewish group announced on Sunday that it was issuing “Ten Pledges” the UK Labour party must take if it is to regain the trust of the country’s Jewish community.

Labour, which was resoundingly defeated in the December 2019 general election, has been wracked by antisemitism scandals since 2015, when the party’s far-left — often violently hostile toward Israel — took control of it.

Its upcoming leadership contest is expected to be a protracted and bruising battle between Labour’s far-left and centrist wings.

“Our Ten Pledges identify the key points we believe Labour needs to sign up to in order to begin healing its relationship with our community,” said Board of Deputies of British Jews President Marie van der Zyl in a statement.

“We expect that those seeking to move the party forward will openly and unequivocally endorse these Ten Pledges in full,” she added, “making it clear that if elected as leader, or deputy leader, they will commit themselves to ensuring the adoption of all these points.”

The Ten Pledges consist of:
1 Resolving outstanding antisemitism cases.
2 Bringing in an independent agency to deal with antisemitism complaints.
3 Ensuring transparency and updates for affected parties.
4 No readmittance for prominent offenders.
5 Suspending any members who provide a platform for people suspended or expelled for antisemitism.
6 Adopting the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s definition of antisemitism without qualifications.
7 Involving the Jewish community in an antisemitism education program.
8 Engaging with the Jewish community and its representative groups.
9 Specifically condemning antisemitism and antisemitic individuals.
10 The next leader will take personal responsibility for ending Labour’s antisemitism crisis.
Former Labour councillor and parliamentary candidate accuses Jewish MP Margaret Hodge of trading on the Holocaust and suggests former deputy leader Tom Watson was in the pay of Israel’s Likud Party
It has been revealed that a former Labour councillor and parliamentary candidate has published numerous social media comments accusing Jewish Labour MP Margaret Hodge of trading on the Holocaust and suggesting former deputy leader Tom Watson and principled Labour defector Ian Austin were in the pay of Israel’s Likud Party.

Bob Pandy, who is still a member of Kensington’s Constituency Labour Party, was Labour’s parliamentary candidate for the seat in 1979. In other posts he also referred to Labour’s antisemitism crisis as a “smear”, worried that leadership hopeful Rebecca Long Bailey might be a “Zionist”, and suggested that Mr Austin might engage in bestiality.

Mr Austin was one of a number of Labour MPs in the previous parliament who resigned from the Labour Party in disgust towards its institutional antisemitism. He is also an honorary patron of Campaign Against Antisemitism.

The revelations were made by a fellow Labour and union activist.
Labour leadership contender Jess Phillips is forced to suspend one of her key aides for posting 'offensive' antisemitic and anti-Israel tweets
Labour leadership contender Jess Phillips has been forced to suspend one of her key aides for posting ‘offensive’ antisemitic and anti-Israel tweets, The Mail on Sunday can reveal.

She took the decision on Friday evening after this newspaper sent her copies of a series of the messages posted by her office manager, including describing Israel as a ‘murderer’ that was ‘inflicting Holocaust conditions on Palestinians’.

Another message appeared to compare Israel to terrorist organisation Islamic State.

Embarrassingly for Mrs Phillips, she was forced to discipline her own staff member just hours after she put tackling antisemitism in the party at the heart of her bid to succeed Jeremy Corbyn. The outspoken Birmingham MP has emerged as one of the leading moderates in the race to lead her party. But The Mail on Sunday last week confronted her over tweets posted by Salma Hamid, Mrs Phillips’ Birmingham Yardley constituency office manager.

In a series of posts between 2014 and 2016 before she was employed by the MP, Mrs Hamid lambasted Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians and praised militant group Hamas, which rules Gaza.

In one message in 2015 addressed directly to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, she appeared to equate Israel with terrorists in Islamic State, writing: ‘Because Israel obeys human rights/law? Hilarious! Isis are terrible too. So really there is no difference.’

In another Twitter exchange, Ms Hamid wrote: ‘We must show the world that “Israel” is the murderer!’ She also claimed that ‘Israel IS inflicting Holocaust conditions on Palestinians! Oppressive, racist and violent!’
How Emily Thornberry shared stage with Hamas leader at anti-Israel rally
Ismail Patel, head of the Leicester-based Friends of Al Aqsa, and Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh were also at the London event.

On Monday, Haniyeh spoke at the Tehran funeral of Iranian general Qassem Soleimani, crediting the Quds Force leader with building his and other Palestinian groups.

The leader of Iran's elite military was killed by a drone strike authorised by US President Trump.

The Hamas leader said: “What Soleimani provided to Palestine and the resistance has brought them to the position they are in today in terms of power and steadfastness."

Dubbing Soleimani “the martyr of Jerusalem", Haniyeh added his death would not deter Palestinian terror groups from fighting Israel.

When Ms Thornberry was questioned over her participation at the 2007 anti-Israel rally, she said she had no idea about Azzam Tamimi’s comments in 2004 defending suicide bombings.

She also claimed she “completely dissociated” herself from the views expressed by Tamimi, Patel and Haniyeh.

On the US killing of Qasem Soleimani, Ms Thornberry told LBC last week: "I don't shed any tears for Solemaini but I think that this is a ratcheting up of tension and it's a very long and another step towards war."

Local Labour branch accused of bullying Luciana Berger will now debate affiliation to the antisemitism-denial group, Jewish Voice for Labour
The local Labour branch in Liverpool Wavertree, which has been accused of bullying its former Jewish MP, Luciana Berger, is to debate affiliating to Jewish Voice for Labour.

The motion to be debated reads: “Wavertree CLP [Constituency Labour Party] agrees to affiliate to the socialist and anti-racist organisation Jewish Voice For Labour at the earliest opportunity.” It is understood that there will not be a vote at the conclusion of the debate this evening.

Jewish Voice for Labour is a pro-Corbyn antisemitism-denial group and sham Jewish representative organisation within the Labour Party.

Luciana Berger was the target of a sustained campaign of antisemitic harassment and bullying that eventually led her to quit the Labour Party in February 2019 after her local constituency party proposed a motion of no-confidence in her.

It is understood that the constituency Labour party leader, Dr Scott-Samuel, who is reportedly Jewish, appeared on The Richie Allen Show on the radio, on which he promoted a Rothschild conspiracy theory, saying: “The Rothschild family are behind a lot of the neo-liberal influence in the UK and the US”

The Richie Allen Show has featured antisemites such as Alison Chabloz and Gilad Atzmon, conspiracy theorist Kevin Barrett, who believes Israel was behind 9/11, and Holocaust deniers including Nicholas Kollerstrom. The host has himself apparently questioned the number of Jews that were murdered in the Holocaust, telling Mr Kollerstrom that “there’s a big lie there somewhere, I don’t believe the numbers are anywhere near as great as they’re saying, you know…I’m with you with respect to the numbers and the way that it’s been exploited ever since.” Mr Allen is considered to be a protege of David Icke.

Pro-Israel Students at Conference Gain Knowledge, Confidence in Combating Hate on Campus
Pro-Israel students from 30 university campuses across the United States and Canada gathered last week in New York City for a three-day conference to learn about defending Israel effectively, confidently and unapologetically at their schools.

The conference was hosted by Students Supporting Israel, a nonpartisan, non-Jewish campus group, and took place at Columbia University, which has been called one of the most hostile colleges for pro-Israel students.

“That was why it was important for us to host our conference here,” explained SSI Co-Founder Ilan Sinelnikov. “The most hostile place? That’s where SSI will go because our activists should be able to take on any opponent, at any campus, at any time of the year. That is basically our motto at SSI.”

Gathered at the conference were 90 Jewish and non-Jewish pro-students from a wide range of backgrounds, including South American, Bangladeshi and South Korean. Some the activities and discussions they participated in included a mock student government lobby so participants could practice their pro-Israel arguments; hearing from SSI leaders about their experiences advocating for Israel support on campuses; asking questions to Consul General of Israel in New York Dani Dayan; practicing in a group activity how to respond to challenging questions about Israel; and they were given tips about combating BDS—the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement—on campus and drafting pro-Israeli legislation.

“I’m immensely grateful to be here and to be able to experience being around so many other people who are like-minded, and have so much passion for Zionism in a really authentic and original way that’s individual to everyone here,” said Arianna Sadikov, 20, a Jewish sophomore at California’s Santa Monica College.

Guardian corrects: deletes claim Arab Israelis have no political representation
A Jan. 12th article in the Observer (sister site of the Guardian) on Sanaa Darawsha, Israel’s highest-ranking female Arab football referee, titled “The men were screaming. They made me feel I should not be a referee”, included the following paragraph:

We contacted the journalist, Sachin Nakrani, to object the false claims that Arab Israelis are “restricted” to specific areas in Israel, and that they have “little or no political representation”.

He promptly responded to us on Twitter, via a private message, and acknowledged that the sentence with the word “restricted” was awkward, and that he didn’t actually mean to suggest that Arab Israelis are only allowed to live in certain cities. Further, after we pointed out that the Arab Israeli party (The Joint List) is the third largest party in the Knesset, he agreed to delete the claim regarding Arabs political representation.

Shortly after the exchange, we confirmed that the words “there is little or no political representation” were removed. Though the paragraph is still quite problematic, we commend the journalist for his responsiveness to our concerns.
Revisiting two BBC News website reports from July 2019
The BBC’s repeated claim that Teka was “shot dead by an off-duty policeman” was shown to be an incomplete portrayal of events.

“Teka died after the officer shot a bullet that ricocheted off the ground, during the altercation in a park in the Kiryat Haim neighborhood north of Haifa.

The details released by the ministry department in charge of investigating police misconduct attest that traces of DNA had been found in the park that support the officer’s account that he suffered bruises from stones Teka had thrown at him. Information on forensics tests indicate that sizable quantities of alcohol and hashish were found in Teka’s remains.”

Back in July 2019 we noted that the BBC had failed to produce any follow-up reporting to inform audiences of the findings of the early investigation into the incident. To date the BBC has likewise shown no interest in informing its audiences of the Justice Ministry’s latest findings. That of course means that the BBC’s “permanent public record” – the reports which remain available to the public online without any update – continue to promote partial and inaccurate information, including the allegation that the Israeli police kill people “because of their skin colour”.
BBC Arabic publishes an edited timeline of Syria’s Jewry
The way BBC chose to assemble the part of its timeline that deals with the 20th century, based on JIMENA’s webpages, is also misleading and far from perfect. The report made absolutely no mention of several violent attacks against Syrian Jews that JIMENA’s English timeline and summary do document.

1. The 1947 government-encouraged Aleppo pogrom, killing 75 local Jews and displacing around 7,000 (the BBC timeline counted this group along with the Jews who left Syria in the late 1940s following state-sanctioned persecution: dispossession of properties and dismissal of all government jobs).
2. The 1949 Damascus synagogue bombing, carried out by a militant group composed of Syrians, Egyptians and Palestinians, killing 12 Jews.
3. The 1974 rape and murder of four Jewish women – the three sisters of the Zeibak family and their cousin, Eva Saad – who tried to flee Syria in disguise. Their mutilated bodies were discovered in a cave near a town adjacent to the Lebanese border, along with the bodies of two young Jewish men who were murdered there earlier – Natan Shaya and Kassem Abadi. All bodies were returned to their families by the Syrian police shortly after the discovery, apparently with no further investigation ever conducted.

By editing out hostilities and atrocities carried out against the Jews of Syria by some of their neighbors and fellow citizens, often with the indirect support of local authorities, the BBC’s timeline whitewashes these ugly episodes from the country’s history. Specifically, by removing the Damascus blood libel from the chronology, BBC also knowingly avoided an opportunity to combat one of the Arab world’s, and particularly Syria’s, most common and venomous antisemitic myths.
At SF State, Israeli Arab Christian Traces Journey From IDF to Interfaith Activism
On November 5th, San Francisco State University was visited by a guest the likes of whom is seldom expected. His name is Yoseph Haddad and he is a social activist, a former soldier in the Israel Defense Forces, and a survivor of a missile attack by the Lebanese terrorist group Hezbollah. He is also a proud Israeli Arab, one of the country’s approximately 1.8 million, and loves his home country. Haddad’s intersectional identity as an Israeli, Arab, Christian and trauma survivor is a testament to the value of untold stories like his.

Yoseph Haddad was born in the Israeli city of Nazareth — yes, that Nazareth — which has a predominantly Arab population. He grew up wanting to serve in the IDF, which Israeli Jews are obligated to do by law (with few exceptions) and Arabs are allowed to but, for various reasons, often don’t. Primarily, there is a cultural stigma among Israeli Arabs towards serving in the IDF; some identify more with Palestinian national identity than Israel’s, despite the fact that the majority of the Israeli Arab population is proud of their nationality.

Yet Haddad not only felt pride in his nationality, he acted on it. At the age of 18, he enlisted to serve in the IDF and was accepted to the Golani Brigade, an infantry unit that traditionally operates in the formerly Syrian Golan Heights. In 2006, towards the end of his service and amid the Second Lebanon War, Haddad suffered one of the most traumatic experiences of his life: a Hezbollah missile killed his squadmates and severely injured him during a battle in Bint J’bil, Lebanon.

“All I could think,” Haddad recalls, “is ‘what am I going to say to my mother?’”

Having since recovered from his injury, Haddad is now the founder and CEO of an interfaith nonprofit called Together — Vouch for Each Other, which facilitates dialogue between Israelis and Palestinians. He has personally experienced hateful attacks and harassment from Jews and Arabs alike, motivated by bigotry, but responds to them with discussion and an open mind.

Total of 2.3 Million People Visited Auschwitz in 2019, Setting New Record
A record 2.32 million people visited the sites of the Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz and Auschwitz II-Birkenau in Poland last year, the Auschwitz Memorial announced on Tuesday.

That number is about 170,000 more than in 2018, which also broke previous records.

Some 81 percent of last year’s visitors learned about the camp’s history with one of the museum’s 340 guides, who conduct tours in 21 languages. More than 14,000 people in organized groups visited the sites as part of study visits, which is approximately a 20 percent increase compared to the previous year.

According to data in the online reservation system, in 2019, the memorial was visited by at least 396,000 visitors from Poland, 200,000 from Great Britain, 120,000 from the United States, 104,000 from Italy, 73,000 from Germany, 70,000 from Spain, 67,000 from France, 59,000 from Israel, 42,000 from Ireland and 40,000 from Sweden.

“However, [the] data [is] not complete because in relation to the 730,000 visitors who came to the memorial in international groups, the organizers of the trips did not declare a particular country,” said Andrzej Kacorzyk, director of the International Center for Education about Auschwitz and the Holocaust. “Consequently, we are undertaking actions aimed at making the statistical data more detailed through the electronic system for booking entry cards.”

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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 14 years and 30,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.


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