Thursday, October 29, 2020

From Ian:

Heads Up, Liberal Jews––Don’t be Jews with trembling knees
“Don’t threaten us with cutting off your aid. It will not work. I am not a Jew with trembling knees. I am a proud Jew with 3,700 years of civilized history. Nobody came to our aid when we were dying in the gas chambers and ovens. Nobody came to our aid when we were striving to create our country. We paid for it. We fought for it. We died for it. We will stand by our principles. We will defend them. And, when necessary, we will die for them again, with or without your aid.”

Those words were spoken by Menachem Begin in June of 1982, directly to the Democrat senator from Delaware, Joe Biden, who had confronted the Israeli Prime Minister during his Senate Foreign Relations Committee testimony by threatening to cut off aid to Israel.

That’s right, only 32 years after the establishment of the tiny Jewish state, which was surrounded by 22 war-mongering, Israel-loathing Arab states, and only 35 years after the Holocaust savagely murdered––tortured and gassed-to-death––six-million Jewish men, women, children and infants, Senator Biden was once again terrorizing the Jews of the world with his menacing ultimatum.

Not a fluke, not a misstatement, not an error in judgement, but vintage Joe Biden, whose longtime antagonism and belligerence toward Israel has been exhaustively documented, most recently by Shmuel Klatzkin (Biden’s Hostility to Israel––read the whole article) and Janet Levy in (Is a Vote for Joe Biden in the Interest of American Jews?).

Levy reports a number of the Obama-Biden regime’s consistent anti-Israel policies:
Interfered with the 2015 Israeli elections with the goal of defeating the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu,
Their State Department granted $350,000 to OneVoice, a radical anti-Israel organization that supports the terrorist group Hamas,
They fully supported the boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement to destroy Israel economically.
In 2016, Biden pressured Ukraine, an abstainer, to vote for U.N. Security Council measure 2334, which claimed that ancient and historic Jewish sites were “illegally occupied.”
They approved the same U.N. measure, which condemned Israelis building settlements, which emboldened the Palestinian Authority to call for the ethnic cleansing of Jews from Judea, Samaria, and the Jewish Quarter, reversing decades of U.S. vetoes against such moves.

Today, candidate Biden pledges to reopen the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) mission in Washington, D.C. And he vows, incomprehensibly, to rejoin the Iran nuclear deal, in which the arch-terrorist state in the entire world has vowed to exterminate the State of Israel.
Was the Balfour Declaration a Colonial Document?
The Balfour Declaration, issued 103 years ago on November 2 on behalf of the British government, stated: "His Majesty's Government view with favor the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people." But was the Balfour Declaration really a colonial document?

Unlike classic colonial documents, the Balfour Declaration was an open declaration, not a secret treaty or a correspondence. It conveyed a commitment made in public, and it was made not to a foreign government, or to a client chieftain, but to an entire people, the Jewish people. The Balfour Declaration thus belongs to the new style of public diplomacy ushered in by the 20th century.

Yes, the Balfour Declaration looks like a gesture by a powerful empire. But Britain by 1917 wasn't the power it had been and was in no position to issue a unilateral commitment with regard to Palestine or any other Ottoman territory. Any number of dissenting Allies could have scuttled the whole thing: the French, the Italians, certainly the Americans, possibly even the Vatican. Zionist leader Nahum Sokolow secured a letter from the French as good as the Balfour Declaration (if not better), and even received a nod of acquiescence from Pope Benedict XV.

After the U.S. entered the war in April 1917, it was unthinkable that Britain would issue any public pledge without the agreement of the American president, Woodrow Wilson. Had Wilson not given the word, the Balfour Declaration would never have been born. Thus, by the time the declaration was approved by the British Cabinet, its principles, and in Washington's case even its text, had been approved by all of Britain's allies.

The Balfour Declaration had morphed into the Allied declaration. This smoothed the way for its inclusion in the League of Nations mandate of Palestine to Britain, thereby making it international law. The Balfour Declaration survived the war not because it harked back to prewar colonialism but because it anticipated the postwar world of national self-determination and international legitimacy.
Litigating the Balfour Declaration: The Revealing Lies Behind the Latest Move of Palestinian Symbolism
Indeed, the hard truth is that Israel had as many enemies among the imperialists as friends. But go to an elite college campus in America today and you will see this line of attack echoed and echoed again: a Jewish democracy misrepresented as a tool of revanchist colonialism. This is perhaps the only success attributable to the Palestinian cause — a relentless misrepresentation enabled by Western establishment elites of the reality of the Jewish state.

Second, it tells us that Palestinian leaders are misusing their own history in service of their cause. In 1948, the “Palestinian people” whose land Balfour purportedly set up for stealing were not a people in a democratic sense and did not yet call themselves Palestinians. Indeed, the would-be beneficiaries of Arab combat were dominated by a trio of landowners of huge estates, the Islamic clerisy, and the sub-stratal tribes and clans of a torn society. Even if Israel were to have lost any of the wars over Palestine from 1947-1948 through 1973 the victor would never have been a democratic “Palestine.” Not only would the Palestinian effendi continue to have ruled, but even if Palestine became a non-democratic state, it would have been a client of the states of Iraq, Egypt, Jordan, and Syria. No workable democracies there, then or now!

In fact, the West Bank was won by Jordan under the British general John Bagot Glubb “Pasha” in 1948; the Gaza Strip went to Egypt the same year. They are both under ultimate Israeli control now. But they exist with the legal almost-fiction of the Palestinian Authority governing modest measures of land west of the Jordan River while a vibrant technology is run by and for the Palestinians themselves; and with Hamas categorically running the lives of the people of Gaza on the understanding that Israel and Egypt might assert their authority if there is too much bloodshed. The ugly truth is that Egypt and Israel are the securers of Gaza’s “relative” stability and peace.

Third, it tells us that the Palestinian leaders, even the “moderates” (which is to say not Hamas), are still playing games rather than pursuing a two-state solution as the region changes for the better around them. The fact is that President Donald Trump and his son-in-law Jared Kushner have literally changed the realities of politics and life in the Middle East: Israel has inadvertently marked the Balfour anniversary with the establishment of full diplomatic ties with the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain and the normalization of relations with Sudan — rumor has it that Saudi Arabia will be next to the table. Of course, the western establishment press pooh-poohed the anticipated accommodations between the Jewish state and the Muslim domains now sitting around conference tables and discussing trade, industry, travel, science, technology, and tourism — as well as what real peace could mean for the entire region.

But still the Palestinian leaders fiddle. Proof positive is the fact that the legal assault on the Balfour Declaration is not new: Mahmoud Abbas, the sort-of president of sort-of Palestine, who is still in office 11 years after his term expired, first announced that legal assault in 2016 and then again in 2017. But nothing substantial happened except that, as David Halbfinger reported in the New York Times the day after the centenary of the Balfour Declaration, there was a demonstration of thousands of youths in Ramallah — at Yasser Arafat’s memorial, no less — where a chant went up announcing Lord Balfour’s “fall.” In Bethlehem, protestors burned an effigy of Balfour and then beat it with their shoes. Palestinian girls met in Jerusalem with the visiting prime minister Theresa May demanding justice. And then it was over. The legal suit was not filed. Tiens!

A brutal verdict on Labour anti-Semitism; stunning fallout as Corbyn is booted
The findings of the investigation into anti-Semitism in the UK Labour party published Thursday by Britain’s anti-racism watchdog are no less devastating for being so widely anticipated. Nor does the careful legalese in which some points are couched detract from the shattering criticism which the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has leveled at the party.

The EHRC launched its inquiry last year amid a wave of anti-Semitism allegations which rocked the Labour party under its former leader, Jeremy Corbyn. Its work was a forensic legal investigation – to examine whether Labour had breached Britain’s equalities legislation – and its conclusions are extraordinarily brutal.

“Our investigation has identified serious failings in leadership and an inadequate process for handling antisemitism complaints across the Labour Party, and we have identified multiple failures in the systems it uses to resolve them,” the 130-page report stated. “We have concluded that there were unlawful acts of harassment and discrimination for which the Labour Party is responsible.”

The fallout from the report has been far swifter and dramatic than many anticipated. Just hours after its publication, Labour suspended Corbyn from the party and removed the whip from him, effectively placing his membership on hold. The man who led Labour to a disastrous defeat in last year’s general election was, as so often in the past, undone by his own words.

In a statement after the report was released, Corbyn acknowledged that “one antisemite is one too many,” but went on to claim that “the scale of the problem was also dramatically overstated for political reasons by our opponents inside and outside the party, as well as by much of the media.” The suspension will give Labour the opportunity to investigate his remarks. Corbyn has vowed to “strongly contest” the party’s decision, labelling it a “political” move, but, for now, the former leader of the Labour Party will be forced to sit as an independent MP in the House of Commons.
UK Labour Party responsible for discrimination, harassment against Jews
The Equality and Human Rights Commission of the UK has found that the British Labour Party violated three components of equality laws in addressing repeated and numerous incidents of antisemitism within the party.

Following the report's publication and subsequent reactions, the party suspended former leader Jeremy Corbyn, under whom much of the allegations of antisemitism in the party's ranks occurred, Reuters reported.

The EHRC, a statutory government authority, said that “at worst” Labour’s failure to tackle antisemitism in its midst could be seen as acceptance of antisemitism.

The report published on Thursday relates to the period in which the Labour Party was led by Corbyn from 2015 to 2020 who took the party in a sharp turn to the left of British politics, and attracted many hard-left, socialist, anti-Zionist, and antisemitic elements to Labour.

According to the EHRC, the Labour Party is responsible for breaching the Equality Act of 2010 through political interference into antisemitism complaints, failing to provide adequate training to those handling antisemitism complaints, and antisemitic harassment.

This is the beginning, not the end
It would certainly be understandable if some in our community took that view. The past few years have had a serious impact on the mental and physical health of many Jews — and not just on those who were active in the fight against antisemitism.

This has been a traumatic time for all of our community and many will grasp this opportunity to put it behind us now that judgement has been given.

But that would be a profound mistake. The EHRC report marks not an end but a beginning.

Sir Keir Starmer has so far made the right noises about what he intends to do but he has done nothing, citing as an alibi the need to wait for the EHRC report.

There are no more excuses for Labour. The clock has now started ticking. The antisemites must be expelled — now. The party must turn itself from a racist organisation to a bulwark against racism — now. The culture of the party, in which fellow members are abused and vilified if they regard Israel as a legitimate country, must change — now.

Not as soon as possible; not in the near future; not when the time is right. Now.

Anything less, and Labour will be merely a party with a smart new look but which remains a natural home for racists.
UK Labour suspends unrepentant Jeremy Corbyn after damning anti-Semitism report
Britain’s main opposition Labour party on Thursday suspended its former leader Jeremy Corbyn following his response to a damning government watchdog report that said the party had broken equality laws in its handling of anti-Semitism complaints.

“In light of his comments made today and his failure to retract them subsequently, the Labour Party has suspended Jeremy Corbyn pending investigation,” the party announced.

Labour’s new leader Sir Keir Starmer said the report, which found Labour under Corbyn engaged in unlawful “harassment and discrimination,” marked a “day of shame” for the party. The party said Corbyn was being suspended pending further investigation.

Corbyn vowed to “strongly contest” the party’s decision, labelling it a “political” move; for now, he will be compelled to sit as an independent MP in the House of Commons.

In a Facebook post earlier in the day responding to the damning report, Corbyn said he didn’t accept all of its findings and asserted that “the scale of the problem was also dramatically overstated for political reasons by our opponents inside and outside the party, as well as by much of the media.”

He added that he regretted that “it took longer to deliver… change than it should.”
UK Jewish groups: Anti-Semitism report is ‘damning verdict’ on Corbyn’s Labour
UK Jewish groups on Thursday hailed as a “damning verdict” a government watchdog report that found that the Labour party had broken equality law through its “inexcusable” handling of anti-Semitism complaints under the leadership of former head Jeremy Corbyn.

“This report is a damning verdict on what Labour did to Jews under Jeremy Corbyn and his allies. It proves why British Jews were so distressed and it disgraces those who attacked us for speaking out against anti-Jewish racism,” said the Board of Deputies of British Jews, the Jewish Leadership Council and the Community Security Trust in a joint statement.

“Our Jewish community never wanted this fight, but we had to defend ourselves and are proud to have done so. We thank all those who stood with us, despite the abuse they received as a result,” the statement read. “Jeremy Corbyn will rightly be blamed for what he has done to Jews and Labour, but the truth is more disturbing, as he was little more than a figurehead for old and new anti-Jewish attitudes. All of this was enabled by those who deliberately turned a blind eye.”

Karen Pollock, the chief executive of the Holocaust Educational Trust (HET), said the “damning report confirms all that has been said about the depths of the endemic anti-Jewish racism in the Labour party.”

“Holocaust denial, conspiracy theories and Jew hate are unacceptable in all walks of life, and certainly nobody expected it to fester in a political party founded on anti-racism, but it did,” Pollock said. “Today is not the end of this dark chapter, but an opportunity for the Labour Party to consign this shameful period to history, take responsibility and begin the journey back to any sort of morality.”

Meanwhile, the Jewish Labour Movement accused Corbyn of presiding over a “sordid, disgraceful chapter in the Labour Party’s history.”
CAA statement on the EHRC’s report on antisemitism in the Labour Party
Gideon Falter, Chief Executive of Campaign Against Antisemitism, said: “The Equality and Human Rights Commission’s report is a groundbreaking document. It is the first ever finding by the EHRC of unlawful acts. It heavily criticises the Labour Party’s former leadership. It makes clear recommendations to ensure that there is zero tolerance of antisemitism in the Party in the future. It provides a robust framework for ensuring that the Party complies.

“The EHRC’s report utterly vindicates Britain’s Jews who were accused of lying and exaggerating, acting as agents of another country and using their religion to ‘smear’ the Labour Party. In an unprecedented finding, it concludes that those who made such accusations broke the law and were responsible for illegal discrimination and harassment.

“The debate is over. Under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, the Labour Party became institutionally antisemitic. It drove almost half of British Jews to consider leaving the country. For five miserable years, every effort to compel Labour to reform failed. We were left with no choice but to refer the Party to the EHRC, which launched an investigation with us as complainant. The EHRC’s findings and recommendations today – that Labour’s leadership and culture created an unlawful environment that discriminated against Jews – closely align with the hundreds of pages of evidence and argument that we submitted to the EHRC over many months.

“Frankly, this report would not be much different had we written it. It is the dispensing of British justice that British Jews have sorely awaited, but has been denied for too long.

“Jeremy Corbyn and those around him who took part in or enabled the gaslighting, harassment and victimisation of Britain’s Jewish minority are shamed for all time. Those who defended and stood by them are shown to have made possible the closest flirtation that mainstream British politics has had with antisemitism in modern history.
Background: The EHRC’s full statutory investigation into antisemitism in the Labour Party, in which CAA is the complainant
Campaign Against Antisemitism first approached the EHRC at the time of the Labour Party Conference in Brighton in 2017. The conference was so rife with antisemitism that Brighton and Hove City Council’s then Labour leader, Warren Morgan, told his own Party that he would not permit use of Council premises for the conference again. Mr Morgan later resigned from the Labour Party over its failure to address antisemitism. Following Campaign Against Antisemitism’s contact with the EHRC, the Chief Executive of the EHRC issued a statement demanding that the Labour Party prove “that it is not a racist party”.Campaign Against Antisemitism made a number of disciplinary complaints to the Labour Party between 2016 and 2018 about Jeremy Corbyn, including about his defence of the antisemitic Tower Hamlets mural in 2012, his Holocaust Memorial Day event in 2010, and his Press TV interview in 2012 (Press TV is an Iranian state broadcaster which Ofcom banned from broadcasting in Britain).

The Labour Party repeatedly refused to open an investigation into our complaints against Mr Corbyn, and consequently on 31st July 2018, Campaign Against Antisemitism formally referred the Labour Party to the EHRC over its institutional antisemitism.

Subsequently, the Jewish Labour Movement and Labour Against Antisemitism Ltd made further submissions, which supported our referral.

At the EHRC’s request, Campaign Against Antisemitism submitted detailed legal arguments in November 2018. We continued to provide additional legal arguments to the EHRC in relation to subsequent developments, resulting in the EHRC’s announcement on 7th March 2019 that it was starting pre-enforcement proceedings against the Labour Party.

At Pittsburgh memorial, Bernie Sanders warns authoritarianism rising in Israel
In a speech about the dangers of bigotry at a memorial for the synagogue shooting in Pittsburgh, Bernie Sanders included Israel in a list of countries where authoritarianism is rising.

Sanders, the democratic socialist Vermont senator, was the keynote speaker at a virtual memorial event hosted by Bend The Arc, a progressive Jewish advocacy group. The event, held a day after the two-year anniversary of the synagogue shooting in Pittsburgh in which 11 Jews were killed, centered on warning of the dangerous effects of white supremacy and xenophobia.

Sanders spoke about how relatives of his were murdered in the Holocaust, and how he understands the threat posed when white supremacists gain power. He spoke about how white supremacy targets Jews and all minorities, and how it poses a threat to liberal democracy. He then segued to speaking about how illiberalism and authoritarianism were on the rise around the world, including in Israel.

“They don’t just hate Jews,” he said of white supremacists. “They hate the idea of multiracial democracy. They hate the idea of political equality. They hate immigrants, people of color, LGBTQ people, women and anyone else who stands in the way of their bigotry and racist ideology. All over the world — in Russia, in India, in Brazil, in Hungary, in Israel and elsewhere — we see this rise of a divisive and destructive form of politics. We see intolerant authoritarian political leaders attacking the very foundations of democratic societies.”

Sanders was frequently critical of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu while he was running for president earlier this year. Critics in Israel and abroad have also called out Netanyahu’s perceived disregard for democratic norms, including his remaining in office while on trial for corruption and legislation that critics say degrades the status of Israel’s Arab minority.
Democrats Like Cuba More Than Israel, New Poll Shows
A new poll indicates Democrats look more favorably upon Cuba than they do Israel.

According to a YouGov poll released Monday, 39 percent of Democratic-leaning respondents have a favorable opinion of Cuba, compared with a 36 percent favorability rating for Israel.

The poll data feature other notable results: China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea rank among the countries in the bottom 10 in overall favorability among respondents. Meanwhile, the poll’s respondents strongly favor long-term allies such as Australia and the United Kingdom.

Results of the poll correlate with many of the larger trends in American foreign policy. Some Democrats have come under fire during the 2020 campaign for their affinity and history with communist Cuba, such as former vice-presidential hopeful Rep. Karen Bass (D., Calif.) and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.).

Meanwhile, anti-Israel activism through the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement is promoted through the Democratic Party’s far left, as national figures such as Rep. Ilhan Omar (D., Minn.) and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D., N.Y.) endorse many of the movement’s major talking points.

In contrast, Republicans have a long record of defending Israel and taking on its adversaries and competitors during the Trump administration. Under President Donald Trump, Washington moved its embassy in Israel to Jerusalem and continues to work with Israeli leaders to forge new diplomatic ties with longstanding competitors in the Persian Gulf.
Northwestern Faculty Condemn University President for Denouncing Anti-Semitic Protests
Hundreds of Northwestern faculty and staff condemned the university's president for denouncing violent racial protests that veered into expressions of virulent anti-Semitism against him.

On Oct. 26, faculty members sent a letter to Northwestern president Morton Schapiro expressing their dismay at his "response to recent student protests about the pervasiveness of anti-Black violence and the long history and current nature of much policing in this country."

Schapiro had issued a statement condemning students who destroyed school property, surrounded his home after six consecutive nights of protest, and chanted "Piggy Morty," which Schapiro called an anti-Semitic slur.

"What started as peaceful protests have recently grown into expressions that have been anything but peaceful or productive," Schapiro's statement read.

The faculty letter accuses Schapiro of refusing to engage with students of color. "We write … to express our strong support for … our BIPOC students and staff colleagues, and to assert strenuously that all have the right to protest and redress historic injustices and to protect our communities from violence and hate."

Calls for police abolition and on-campus protests have grown alongside the Black Lives Matter movement. At the nearby University of Chicago, student activists vowed to protest for a year because the administration refused to abolish the campus police department. Johns Hopkins University students also protested plans to create a campus police department, leading to multiple student and Baltimore-resident arrests.
Top UK Jewish Group Condemns Leeds University Event Featuring Infamous Palestinian Terrorist
A top UK Jewish organization has condemned a recent event at Leeds University featuring infamous Palestinian terrorist Leila Khaled.

Khaled, a leading member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), took part in the hijacking of a Tel Aviv-bound commercial flight in 1969.

The Telegraph reported that the 76-year-old Khaled addressed Leeds University students last Friday via Zoom during an event sponsored by the school’s Palestine Solidarity Group.

In her remarks, Khaled endorsed terrorism, saying, “We have used all means of struggle and we are still determined to continue using all means of struggle including armed struggle.”

Adam Saeed, the event’s chair, commented, “I think we all can be inspired by this.”

While he claimed those at the meeting did not endorse terrorism, he then contradicted himself, saying, under international law “people are entitled to resist occupation by any means they see fit.”

The vice president of the Board of Deputies of British Jews, Amanda Bowman, said in a statement on Wednesday, “That a student event took place at Leeds with Leila Khaled is simply unacceptable.”

“Jewish students and academics should have access to academic spaces free of hate, without platforms being shared with someone who advocates for ‘armed struggle,’” she noted. “The event raises questions about regulation of online gatherings.”
Leftist NGOs fail to report foreign funding, Knesset Research Center finds
A new report from the Knesset Research and Information Center revealed Wednesday that dozens of left-wing NGOs in Israel have allegedly been failing to adhere to legal directives mandating they report any funding they receive from foreign governments.

The report was commissioned by Yamina MK Bezalel Smotrich after he was approached by the right-wing watchdog group Im Tirtzu. The latter's legal division what the group called "a lack of reporting" via a request made in accordance with the Freedom of Information Law.

In 2016, the Israeli parliament passed the Transparency Law requiring NGOs that receive more than half of their budget from foreign governments and donations to file an annual report with the Registrar of Associations, a subdivision of the Justice Ministry, disclosing their funding sources.

NGOs are also required to practice transparency on their website and any other publication and make said information available to the public.

The law sparked sharp debate in Israel, with supporters calling it a necessary step toward increasing transparency, and opponents arguing that it only targets controversial left-wing NGOs, which are the only recipients of foreign government funding.

The report by the Knesset Research and Information Center revealed that not only were many NGOS failing to properly report their funding, but the Registrar of Associations also has not enforced the law.

Im Tirtzu said in a press release that its information petition listed 13 organizations, of which 11 were found to have neglected to report funding from foreign governments.
PreOccupiedTerritory: BDS Claims Credit For Absence Of Concerts In Israel During COVID (satire)
Bloomfield Stadium in this teeming Israeli city hosts concerts in addition to its everyday function as an elite soccer venue, but the raging global SARS-CoV-2 pandemic has led to the cancelation of any such entertainment events for the foreseeable future, a development that the anti-Israel Boycott, Divest, Sanctions movement insists it played an important part.

Activists in the global BDS movement, a loose consortium of like-minded, mostly anti-Israel and antisemitic groups, gave themselves a virtual pat on the back this week as they noted the absence of top-tier, or even mid- or lower-tier, entertainers coming to Israel to perform since this past spring. Even as most observers assume that the ongoing restrictions to stem the spread of COVID lie behind the empty international celebrity event calendar in the Jewish state, the BDS activists know the truth: that their two-decade effort to bring about Israel’s political, diplomatic, academic, economic, and cultural isolation has finally begun to bear fruit.

Leading BDS personalities voiced their satisfaction at seeing years’ worth of campaigning amount to something after all. “It’s been a long journey since Durban,” recalled Omar Barghouti, referring to a 2001 anti-racism conference in South Africa that devolved into an antisemitic hate-fest. “There, a number of international activists formally launched the BDS movement, even though everyone agreed to call it a Palestinian grass-roots initiative. Little did we know, lo these many years later, we could point to a noticeable reduction in the number of rock concerts by A-list artists in Israel. It’s an unfamiliar feeling, this, what do you call it…”

Barghouti paused for several seconds, then continued. “What’s the opposite of impotence?”
John Podhoretz: Twitter’s threats to The Post echo those of authoritarian states — and the media shrugs
Big Tech executives were forced to defend themselves and their platforms in a contentious Senate hearing on Wednesday — with most of the passion relating to the suppression of this newspaper’s Twitter feed over the past two weeks.

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey explained with an eerie calm that The Post can regain access to its Twitter account anytime it wants — once it deletes a tweet with an image his company has decided violates its standards.

Dorsey’s words echo the ­assurances offered writers in authoritarian states that they will be allowed to publish their other scribblings . . . just so long as they burn the manuscripts the censors find offensive in front of the censors.

Such an insistence would once have resulted in screams of outrage and professions of solidarity by other journalists. But now we see reactions like this on Twitter, from New York Times opinion staffer Charlie Warzel:

“The NY Post leaving a violating tweet up in order to stay locked out of an account in order to use it as a political cudgel is a classic tactic, but it’s usually one you see from ­individual MAGA influencers.”

Thus did a key employee at the Times suggest it was perfectly reasonable for Twitter to demand that another newspaper send its wares down a memory hole.
Two weeks after Twitter bans Holocaust denial, CEO says still allowed
Two weeks ago, Twitter banned Holocaust denial.
Or did it?
The company announced earlier this month that it would ban posts that “deny or diminish” violent events, including the Holocaust. But in a Senate hearing Wednesday, CEO Jack Dorsey appeared to say that Twitter did not have a policy of removing content denying the Holocaust.

Responding to a question from Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Co., Dorsey said that Holocaust denial is not included among the types of misinformation Twitter bans.

“We have a policy against misinformation in three categories, which are manipulated media, public health, specifically COVID, and civic integrity, election interference and voter suppression,” Dorsey said in a video shared by Yahoo News reporter Alexander Nazaryan. “We do not have a policy or enforcement for any other types of misleading information that you’re mentioning.”

Gardner specifically asked Dorsey: “If somebody denied the Holocaust happened, it’s not misinformation?”

“It’s misleading information,” Dorsey responded. “But we don’t have a policy against that type of misleading information.”

For the Washington Post, Another Opportunity to Portray Israeli Society As Malevolent
In June of this year, at a West Bank checkpoint near the Abu Dis suburb of Jerusalem, a car approaching the checkpoint accelerated, suddenly made a sharp turn, and rammed into a female police officer, sending her flying through the air. When the driver of the car exited the vehicle, he was shot by other officers. He died of the gunshot a few minutes later.

The man’s uncle told the press, “My cousin, the nephew of my wife, was executed, murdered in cold blood and Netanyahu bears responsibility.”

The uncle was Saeb Erekat, Secretary General of the PLO Executive Committee, and it wasn’t his first slander against Israel. As detailed recently by Palestinian Media Watch, he supports terror against Israeli civilians, including not only his nephew’s heinous act but also the pay-to-slay system under which the Palestinian Authority pays money to those held in Israeli jails on convictions for acts of terrorism or to families of those who have died while committing terror attacks. He opposes normalization with Israel, and has even made the completely bogus claim that Jesus was a Palestinian. In January of this year, according to a translation by PMW, Erekat said,

The Palestinian people’s struggle is meant to achieve freedom, independence, and the end of the occupation, settlement, collective punishments, and war crimes, and it is forbidden for anyone and any party that relies on international law and the international bodies to describe this struggle as terror.

So when he was recently admitted to a world-class, cutting-edge medical facility in Israel, Hadassah Hospital, for treatment for Covid-19, most people might have thought that Israel’s magnanimity was newsworthy.
Time to Bring Anti-Zionist Anachronisms to An End
In her 2008 book Occupied With Non-Violence: A Palestinian Woman Speaks, pro-Palestinian activist Jean Zaru speaks of the difficulty that she faces when introducing herself to Christians from the West. They often mistakenly assume that she is either a Muslim or a Jew because she lives in Jerusalem. When she tells these Christians that she is in fact a Christian, they often ask when she converted to her newfound faith.

Her answer, she writes, is that “I am a Christian, because my ancestors were disciples of Christ. Arabs were the first Christians. They formed the earliest Christian community in Jerusalem.”

Zaru’s response is riddled with blatant falsehoods.


The first Christians were not Arabs, but were Jews who had followed Jesus during his ministry and kept his memory alive after his crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension. Moreover, Arabs did not form, as Zaru writes, “the earliest Christian community in Jerusalem.”

That designation, belongs — again — to Jews. Arabs who embraced Christianity are in fact mentioned in the book of Acts, but the fact remains that Jesus’s earliest followers and the first Christian community in Jerusalem were Jews.

This is patently evident in the Book of Acts. The first five chapters describe the early episodes of the church in Jerusalem, with one of the biggest events, Jesus’s ascension, taking place on a Jewish holiday — Pentecost.
Le Devoir Publishes Non-Story Containing Spurious Allegations of IDF Recruitment in Canada
With everything going on in the world today, from the global pandemic, U.S. elections and the recession, it was surprising to see Le Devoir devote a front-page story on October 19 containing spurious allegations from anti-Israel BDS activists claiming that Israel is carrying out illegal recruitment activities for the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) in Canada.

Le Devoir reported that 100 university professors, authors, union representatives and Palestinian rights activists had sent a letter of complaint to Justice Minister Lametti on October 19 calling for Israeli diplomats in Canada to be charged. (Le Devoir mentioned it received an advanced copy of the letter, but didn’t reveal who it came from).

The articles, by parliamentary correspondent Marie Vastel, contained accusations that the Israeli Consulate in Toronto acted as a “facilitator of this recruitment” with demands that its employees be prosecuted by Canadian authorities.

The signatories of this letter features a who’s who of notorious anti-Israel activists including philosopher Noam Chomsky and Roger Waters, co-founder of the rock group Pink Floyd.

They claim that by issuing invitations to meet with representatives of the Israel Defense Forces in Canada, that the Israeli Consulate in Toronto conducts recruitment for the country’s army.
Top Officials Discuss Cooperation Against Antisemitism at First-of-Its-Kind Balkans Forum
Top officials from the US, Israel and a number of southeastern European countries — including Albania, Kosova, North Macedonia and Montenegro — took part on Wednesday on the first-ever Balkans Forum Against Anti-Semitism.

The event took place against the backdrop of Albania’s recent decision to adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of antisemitism.

A press release from the Combat Anti-Semitism Movement — which helped organized the event, along with the Albanian parliament and the Jewish Agency — said, “Participants discussed how Balkans countries can work together to eradicate anti-Semitism, creating better, more tolerant societies for future generations and the important role that the IHRA definition can play in this process.”

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told the online gathering, “We are here because antisemitism is sadly still with us. We share the responsibility of those before us to crush it. We can do it. First, we must define this threat and understand it clearly.”

“The task of combating antisemitism is pressing, especially as we have seen a disturbing uptick during the pandemic,” he noted.

European Parliament President David Maria Sassoli said, “The shameful and sad truth is: In 2020, 75 years after the end of World War II, many Jewish people all over Europe cannot live a life free of worry.”

“This shows that we must never rest, that we must never stop, that we must never allow ourselves to think that the story we believed was over 75 years ago cannot repeat itself,” he continued.
Swedish City of Malmo Cuts Ties With Arab Book Fair Over Sale of Antisemitic Literature
The southern Swedish city of Malmo announced that it was breaking ties with an annual Arab book fair that takes place there over the sale of antisemitic literature, local news outlets reported on Wednesday.

The book fair — first launched in 2017 — had received a grant of $20,000 from the municipality and may now be required to return the money. A spokesman for the fair, Mounira Alshab, said the organizers were “very sad about what has happened.”

The city’s cultural director, Pernilla Conde Hellman, told the Simon Wiesenthal Center (SWC) — which monitors book fairs around the world for antisemitic content — that the sale of antisemitic literature was impermissible.

“It has come to our knowledge that visitors to the book fair’s website are offered to buy antisemitic literature, which is completely unacceptable,” she said. “It goes against everything we stand for and we therefore choose to immediately terminate the cooperation, and hope that other contributors such as the Swedish National Council for Culture will do the same.”

Shimon Samuels, the SWC’s international affairs director, declared himself “satisfied” with the outcome, but “urged the Malmö municipality to investigate who originally agreed to this generous support and take appropriate measures to ensure that sponsorship for any form of hatred is never repeated.”

Among the antisemitic titles being offered for sale was an Arabic translation of “The Synagogue of Satan: The Secret History of Jewish World Domination,” by the British neo-Nazi Andrew Carrington Hitchcock.
Moody’s keeps Israel’s A1 credit rating despite pandemic, ‘polarized politics’
A leading rating agency has left Israel’s credit rating unchanged at A1, expressing confidence in the country’s economy despite two punishing coronavirus lockdowns and a “polarized political system.”

Moody’s Investor Services also kept the outlook on Israeli government debt at stable, the ratings firm said in a statement Wednesday.

“The current rating reflects Israel’s robust medium-term growth potential, strong external position and highly credible institutions, which are balanced against a combination of longer-term demographic challenges and persistent geopolitical risks,” the agency said. “These strengths will help the credit profile to withstand the severe but temporary crisis arising from the coronavirus outbreak.”

Moody’s cited Israel’s offshore natural gas reserves and tech sectors as positives, but noted that the “polarized political system weighs on fiscal policy effectiveness” and that the country’s debt burden is expected to only gradually decline.

Israel’s government has failed repeatedly to pass a state budget, leaving the ruling coalition teetering near collapse.

The report called Israel “economically resilient,” but said it would be challenged by the unpredictability of the coronavirus pandemic and the ongoing conflict with the Palestinians were seen as risks for a possible future downgrading.
Israel Is Ranked Third in the World for Tech, but Can It Hold Its Spot?
Ecosystem ranking platform StartupBlink rated Israel as the third-best tech ecosystem in the world this year, behind only the US and the UK. It overtook Canada, which was third last year, and has steadily grown to become one of the most reputable and innovative nations in the world.

“When you break things down per capita, you see that the results of Israel are outstanding,” StartupBlink’s Eli David told CTech. As one of the founders of the platform, he has seen the ecosystem grow from a handful of startups to more than 60,000 companies around the world. Its interactive map can be crowdsourced by startups and they are also in partnership with organizations such as Crunchbase and the United Nations to fill in the gaps. “When you consider that Israel is on the list of countries below 10 million people, Israel’s achievements are absolutely impressive.”

Its 2020 report considers more than 30 different parameters, such as quantity, quality, number of unicorns and scale-ups, and general performance compared to the rest of the world. The results focus on the comparative analysis between cities and the countries, so even though some countries might rank high on a global scale, it also provides more regional insights on a local scale.

David explains to CTech that there are only three Middle Eastern cities that reach the top 100 on the cities breakdown: Tel Aviv (7), Jerusalem (55), and Dubai (99), with the UAE ranking 43rd as a country overall. While the new normalization ties between Israel and the UAE are sure to benefit Arab countries who have access to Israeli tech and innovation, David predicts that Dubai can even rise to overtake Jerusalem, nearing Tel Aviv as a leader in the regional space. As these ties extend to Bahrain and Sudan and with more countries rumored to sign peace deals going forward, Tel Aviv and Israel will become somewhat of a “capital” for tech ecosystems in the region — something Israelis might not be so familiar with.

“Israel’s main strength is that no one ever accepted it into their club,” he told CTech, discussing how Israel grew to the powerhouse it became. “By definition, our market is too small and we’re isolated, so we had to go international and remain here while doing it.”
2,000-year-old gem seal depicting Greek god Apollo found under City of David
Researchers discovered a gem seal featuring a portrait of Apollo in the drainage channel of the City of David late last month. It was found in archaeological soil that was removed from the foundations of the Western Wall during work on the Archaeological Sifting Project in Tzurim Valley National Park.

The excavations were carried out under the auspices of the City of David and the Israel Nature and Parks Authority. The gem features an engraved portrait of the god Apollo. According to researchers, this surprising and rare find is only the third secured gem sealing (intaglio) from the Second Temple period to have been discovered in Jerusalem.

The gem is cut from dark brown jasper and has remnants of light yellow, brown and white layers. In antiquity, jasper was considered a precious stone. The gem sealing was embedded in a ring, and it dates from the first century CE (Second Temple period).

The oval-shaped gem is 13 mm. long, 11 mm. wide and 3 mm. thick. Because it is an intaglio – having a design carved into the upper side of the stone – its main function was a seal to be stamped on soft material, usually beeswax, for use as a personal signature on contracts, letters, wills, goods and bundles of money.

The intaglio features an engraving of Apollo’s head in profile to the left, with long hair flowing over a wide, pillar-like neck, large nose, thick lips and small, prominent chin. The hair is styled in a series of parallel lines directed to the apex and surrounded by a braid above the forehead. One line of hair marks a strand that covers the ear; long curls flow over part of the neck, reaching the left shoulder. Thin diagonal lines at the base of the head mark the upper end of the garment and the body.
Holocaust survivor and Olympian Sir Ben Helfgott wins Pride of Britain award
Holocaust survivor and British weightlifting hero Sir Ben Helfgott has been honored with a Pride of Britain award for five decades of tireless work in passing on the lessons of the Nazi era and fighting for those who lived through the horrors.

Poland-born Sir Ben — whose parents and younger sister were killed in the Shoah — survived Buchenwald and was liberated from Theresienstadt before being brought to the United Kingdom aged just 15.

Remarkably, just 11 years later, Sir Ben — who turns 91 next month — captained the British weightlifting team at the 1956 Olympics, a feat he repeated four years later.

He is recognized alongside Marcus Rashford and other lesser-known heroes at the Daily Mirror’s Pride of Britain Awards, whose format has been revamped this year amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Instead of the usual glittering dinner in central London, a host of celebrities have been surprising winners around the country over the last few weeks.

Sir Ben — who has held positions in almost every major Holocaust remembrance and education organization — will be seen by a TV audience of millions November 1 receiving the famous trophy from Stephen Fry, surrounded by his wife Arza, three sons and five of his grandchildren.

“You shouldn’t have to be Jewish or to have a relatives who perished in the Holocaust yourself to be stunned by characters like Ben Helfgott, though of course it does add an extra element of admiration and appreciation,” said the author and television presenter after making the presentation at the Holocaust memorial in Hyde Park earlier this month.
Persona non grata no more: Chiune Sugihara - analysis
Last month, on behalf of the Knesset, I had the honor as a son of a Holocaust survivor, to participate in a notable event, marking 2020 as the Year of the Japanese diplomat Chiune Sugihara, at diplomatic conference organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Lithuania.

Who is to say how one will react when the bell of history tolls?

In the darkest hour of World War II, we know how Chiune Sugihara responded. His courage is measured in the more than 6,000 lives he saved from the Nazis and their collaborators. He risked his position, his own and his family’s safety, and his future to help the Jews fleeing certain doom in Lithuania. For his deeds he is forever known as a Righteous Among the Nations by the State of Israel and the Jewish people.

It is indeed an extraordinary story.

Chiune Sugihara, was sent to Kovno, Lithuania, as the imperial consul to establish a network and gather intelligence on the Soviets. In 1939, he traveled from Manchuria to the Russo-German conflict in Europe, where he found the German invasion of Poland and the Soviet occupation of Lithuania had caused a growing surge in Jewish refugees.

It quickly became clear to Sugihara that he must help. When he did not receive approval to do so from Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, he acted on his own, in 1940 issuing his first transit visit via Japan to the Dutch island of Curacao. Soon his consulate was inundated with Jews, desperate to receive this visa. Sugihara did not turn his back on them. It is said that he continued to issue “Visas of Life” to Jewish refugees even as his train was departing Kovno, after being removed from his post by the Japanese government.

Chiune Sugihara’s courage set in motion a chain of humanity, Japanese individuals acting on their own, to help the Jews along their harrowing journey. Perhaps the greatest example of this chain is a man named Setsuzo Kotsuji, Japan’s only scholar of classical Hebrew, who on countless occasions helped the refugees once they reached Japan. Most significantly, at great risk to himself and his family, he successfully obtained the approval of local authorities and of the foreign minister himself to extend the visas from two weeks to many months.

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


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