Tuesday, July 27, 2021

From Ian:

Criticism of Israel is not Antisemitic. But ‘Anti-Zionism’ is. This is why
Russell Shalev argues that human rights movements cannot adequately address anti-Jewish discrimination, harassment or violence without recognising the mutual connection between Judaism and Zionism, and therefore between anti-Zionism and antisemitism. Judaism, he points out, is at once a religion and a nation. Since the inception of the Jewish people, Zion, the Land of Israel, and a national covenant have formed a central role in Jewish self-understanding. The modern Zionist movement is merely a reformulation of the ancient Jewish yearning for national renewal in its ancient homeland. Beginning in the Emancipation, Jewish equality was often conditional on the renunciation of these national ties. Contemporary anti-Zionism is an ideological heir to this antisemitic pressure. Anti-Zionist antisemitism demonises Jewish national identity, marginalises Jews, and legitimizes exclusion, hate and even violence against Jews regardless of their political affiliation, and sometimes even regardless of their personal connection or support for Zionism or the State of Israel.

I once called Zionism an infinite ideal, and I truly believe that even after we achieve our land, the land of Israel, it will not cease to be an ideal. Zionism, as I see it, entails not only an aspiration for a piece of land legally ours, but also for moral and spiritual integrity. – Theodore (Binyamin Ze’ev) Herzl

The Land of Israel was the birthplace of the Jewish people. Here their spiritual, religious and political identity was shaped. Here they first attained to statehood, created cultural values of national and universal significance and gave to the world the eternal Book of Books.

After being forcibly exiled from their land, the people kept faith with it throughout their Dispersion and never ceased to pray and hope for their return to it and for the restoration in it of their political freedom. – Israeli Declaration of Independence

Liel Leibovitz: No, Jews Aren’t White
IF YOU WERE a completist or a pedant, you could simply insist that viewing the world and its inhabitants through the lens of race is a creepy 19th-century affectation that excited mainly the most feeble-minded of Germans and led to a good bit of savagery. You could marshal Martin Luther King Jr. to your defense and say that you take the line about content of character over color of skin seriously. That kind of talk is earnest, but it won’t get you very far with those for whom race alone—and not, say, poverty, or lack of community, or a debilitating exposure to mind-rotting digital platforms—shapes every thread of the human experience.

Next, you can try and argue that the category itself—“white”—is ridiculous. Go tell Giuseppe, for example, that his granddaughter is now considered a member of the rarified white elite, even though he and his fellow immigrants were pelted with racial insults, discriminated against, and murdered. We got Columbus Day, for example, after 11 Italian Americans were lynched in 1892, leading President Harrison to instate a daylong celebration he thought would never become a tradition. Or inform Paddy that while, back in his day, the Irish were talked about, to quote one sickening periodic refrain, as “negroes turned inside out,” his grandson may now rest assured on the top of the racial-grievance food chain.

And yet, even these objections, solemn as they may be, don’t begin to capture the weight of the argument that Jews are somehow white. Take a moment to acquaint yourself, even in passing, with our stiff-necked people, and it’s the following observation that is likely to register very near the top: We stand out precisely because we don’t fit in. Is Judaism a religion? Sure. Are Jews a nation? Yes. Do we share genetic traits? Offer us dairy and find out. Do we come in all shapes, sizes, and skin colors? Amen selah. This is why I, a ninth-generation Israeli whose ancestors arrived in Jerusalem from the backwaters of the Austrian Empire, can amble into the Slat al-Azama synagogue in Marrakesh, or the Beth Yaakov Synagogue in Geneva, or the Ohel Leah Synagogue in Hong Kong, look around and see faces that vary wildly, and yet rest assured that when services start we will all recite, in more or less the exact same fashion, the ancient words that Jews have spoken in daily prayer for millennia.

If this kind of image—black Jews and white Jews, European Jews and African Jews, educated wealthy Jews and barely literate poor Jews all understanding one another perfectly because they belong to the same strange family—strikes you as too flimsy, consider the criteria put forth by José Martínez Cobo, an anthropologist engaged by the United Nations to serve as special rapporteur on discrimination against indigenous populations, as to what makes a people “indigenous.”

To fit the bill, he argued, peoples and nations should display one or more of the following: occupation of ancestral lands; common ancestry; a shared culture or religion; and a shared language. By any and all metrics at our disposal—archeology, history, theology, even DNA tests—Jews, if anything, are the indigenous people of the Land of Israel, from which they might have been exiled now and then but to which they always return.

Still, to the zealots who shout that Jews are white, all that matters is the following steely argument: that for the last few decades, American Jews have benefited from the rewards that come with being among our society’s most educated and best compensated few.
At CUFI gathering, Christians and Jews alike vow to fight BDS ‘economic anti-Semitism’
If day one of the Christians United for Israel 2021 summit was about honoring Israel, the next day’s focus at the organization’s annual conference held this year in Dallas was a call to action.

The more than 700 invited CUFI leaders and donors at the two-day conference on July 18-19 arrived early in the morning for the start of the marathon conference day that covered every topic from Iran, BDS and anti-Semitism among others.

Rather than the pep rally for Israel last Sunday, Monday offered attendees the nuts and bolts of the U.S.-Israel relationship, which they enthusiastically received, and set the course for the following year of activism.

Like the previous day, the proceedings began with another speech by CUFI founder Pastor John Hagee, who came onto the stage holding a bulging folder.

“I hold in my hand legal documents from 33 states that stops BDS—which is Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions—dead in its tracks in 33 states. BDS is economic anti-Semitism,” he said in a thunderous voice as he lifted the folder for the attendees to see. “Christians United for Israel is not a briefcase toting, paper shuffling, sit around the table and talk about it all day organization. We are a get-it-done group of people.

“I say again, dialogue without action is a waste of time, and I don’t dialogue really long. I want to find out what you’re going to do and then go do it.”

Hagee said that those present were leading the charge and winning the BDS fight in America.

“We will not stop until every state in the union has the policy to stop this economic anti-Semitism against the State of Israel,” Hagee said as the audience, seated at round tables with blue-and-white tablecloths in the Hyatt Regency ballroom, applauded with enthusiasm.

Im Tirtzu: The Zionist Salon – Joseph Cohen
Join us for a fascinating discussion with Joseph Cohen, founder of the Israel Advocacy Movement and one of the most recognizable faces in Israeli advocacy whose videos have been viewed by millions of people across the world.

Joseph and Im Tirtzu's Tamir Baram discuss a range of topics including his personal story, anti-Zionism, Jewish homes in Judea and Samaria, and more.
Jonathan Tobin: Why are 'progressive Jews' defending Ben & Jerry's?
Their claims that anti-BDS laws are a threat to free speech are equally false. Just as other anti-discrimination laws don't make it a crime to hate racial, ethnic or religious groups but punish those who engage in discriminatory business practices, the same is true of BDS hate. Companies that discriminate against Israelis should be shunned and denied government contracts on both the state and federal levels.

Much of the American left has accepted the catechism of critical race theory and intersectionality, which falsely claim that the Palestinian war to eliminate Israel is not merely morally equivalent to the struggle for civil rights in the United States but directly linked to it as a common battle against "white privilege." The belief that Jews – whether people of color who trace their origins to the Middle East or from Europe – are "white," privileged and not indigenous to their ancient homeland is as irrational as it is mendacious. Yet to groups like Vermonters for Justice in Palestine, which spearheaded the pressure campaign against Ben & Jerry's and hopes to expand it, these toxic hate-filled ideas are the basis for their efforts to boycott Israel.

These anti-Zionist attitudes are at the heart of both BDS and BDS-lite. By declaring that Jews have no right to live in parts of Jerusalem or to their homes and holy places in "occupied territory," you have accepted the premise of intersectionality about the illegitimacy of the Jewish presence anywhere in the country. Indeed, even these supposedly "pro-Israel and pro-peace" groups like J Street have no problem making common cause on college campuses and elsewhere with anti-Zionist organizations like Jewish Voices for Peace and IfNotNow, which traffic in anti-Semitic tropes and ideas.

Regardless of your politics or where you think Israel's borders should be if peace were possible, if you care about the right of the Jewish state to exist, then you should oppose actions like those of Ben & Jerry's and support enforcement of anti-BDS laws.

Propping up partial boycotts of Israel plays right into the hands of those who are opposed to peace on any terms. By seeking to defend Ben & Jerry's in this manner, these groups aren't defending a non-existent peace process or theoretical hopes for a two-state solution. What they're doing is providing Jewish cover for a movement whose aims are inherently anti-Semitic and which act as auxiliaries for terrorist groups that threaten Jewish lives.

Is the Vermont based Ben & Jerry's 'progressive'?
So, is Ben & Jerry’s truly progressive?

Well, for starters, their boycott of Israel is an embrace of a broader BDS Movement which rejects the right of Israel to exist within any borders, and which most Jews, inside and outside of Israel, believe is intrinsically racist.

Ben & Jerry’s has also expressed their support for radical slogans on criminal justice, such as ‘Defund the Police”, rejected by the overwhelming majority of African-Americans, whose communities would be most negatively impacted if such utopian platitudes were ever to become policy.

Also, let’s recall that they fully embraced Linda Sarour, an “activist’ with well-documented record of anti-Jewish racism, and endorsed the Women’s March despite the fact that the leadership at the time included acolytes of Louis Farrakhan, the notorious antisemitic and anti-LGBT hate preacher.

The Chair of the US Board of Ben & Jerry’s, Anuradha Mittal, reportedly the leading force behind the company’s decision to stop selling ice cream in the “Occupied Palestinian Territory”, is the founder and Executive Director of a think tank that published an article arguing that “progressives” should support Hezbollah, the terror group whose leaders have called for the murder of all Jews.

On her personal Twitter account, she’s made her views quite clear. A few days ago, she retweeted this pure incitement:

As we’ve demonstrated previously, the lie that ‘Jews are invading Al-Aqsa’, or ‘the mosque is in danger’, in some form, has been used for nearly 100 years to incite antisemitic violence.

PA anti-BDS law could be triggered by Ben & Jerry’s Israel boycott
There are 35 states with laws or executive orders designed to hobble the boycott movement against Israel. Pennsylvania is one of them.

When Ben & Jerry’s announced last week it would stop selling ice cream in portions of Israel — the areas the company referred to as “Occupied Palestinian Territory” — officials in several states started looking into whether their anti-boycott laws had been triggered. Officials in Florida, Texas, New York, New Jersey and Illinois are reviewing whether the move will require divestment from Ben & Jerry’s parent company Unilever.

Pennsylvania Rep. Aaron Kaufer (R-Luzerne), the only Jewish Republican in the commonwealth’s legislature, is convinced Pennsylvania’s Act 163 of 2016 — which prohibits state agencies or affiliates from contracting with companies engaged in a boycott of Israel — has been triggered by Ben & Jerry’s actions, and he has taken the lead in seeing that it is enforced.

Act 163 had wide-bipartisan support when it was passed in 2016. The House approved the bill 181-9, and the Senate 47-1.

Last week, Kaufer sent letters to Gov. Tom Wolf, Attorney General Josh Shapiro and state Treasurer Stacy Garrity urging them to enforce Act 163.

“Somebody, in my opinion, needed to call this out and say, ‘This has gone too far. I’m taking a stand,’” Kaufer told the Chronicle. “This cannot be condoned, and if I stay silent, I’m condoning what’s going on. I don’t want to see further businesses go down this pathway.”

New York town of Hempstead to end sales contracts with Ben & Jerry's
The town of Hempstead in Long Island, New York, has formally announced that they will be cutting ties with Ben and Jerry's and their parent company Unilever, The Jewish Press reported last week.

Following the ice cream company's decision to end the sale of their products in the West Bank and east Jerusalem, the town of Hempstead decided that they will be cutting ties and ending municipal contracts with the company, in support of the Jewish community.

In an open letter explaining the decision to the public, Hempstead Council member Bruce Blakeman wrote that the council "stand with [their] Jewish neighbors against anti-Semitism and maintain a strong stance against the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) Movement."

Beyond Long Island, New York State as a whole is one of five states which is currently considering boycotting the product.

Liz Gordon, the executive director of Corporate Governance for the New York State Common Retirement Fund, on Friday wrote to Unilever saying that State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli is “troubled and concerned about reports suggesting that Ben & Jerry’s, a Unilever wholly-owned subsidiary, is involved in BDS activities.”
Two New York Towns To Boycott Ben & Jerry’s
Local New York officials say their towns will boycott Ben & Jerry’s after the ice cream company announced it would end sales in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Town officials from Hempstead and North Hempstead are urging the removal Ben & Jerry's products from store shelves and looking to apply anti-Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) legislation the towns passed in 2017. Hempstead town supervisor Don Clavin (R.) said the company will be held "accountable" and can expect to see its products "in the garbage."

"They’re gone. Don't go buy Ben & Jerry's," Clavin said. "Buy ice cream that is a friend of Israel—Häagen Dazs it is. Every contract’s going to be reviewed, and we’re going to hold them accountable for their support of this anti-Israeli action."

North Hempstead town supervisor Judi Bosworth (D.) said her town will apply a measure prohibiting them from working with companies that support the BDS movement. Nassau County executive Laura Curran (D.) also slammed the ice cream company, saying she was "disappointed" by its alignment with anti-Israel activists.

The local pushback against Ben & Jerry’s comes as the company stumbles to find its footing after anti-Israel comments in July. State lawmakers are considering divesting from Ben & Jerry’s parent company. The Washington Free Beacon also reported the ice cream company’s board chairwoman has a history of drafting op-eds defending Hezbollah and supporting U.S. funding to Hamas.

Ben & Jerry’s ‘Settlements’ Boycott: NYT, WaPo Cover Up Eliminationist Goal of BDS, Giving Free Pass to Orgs That Support It
Ben & Jerry’s on July 19 announced it would stop selling its ice cream in “Occupied Palestinian Territory.” This was a turning point for the Vermont-based company, as the move to boycott Jewish “settlements” was the first time Ben & Jerry’s acted in a tangible manner against Israel.

While the decision to stop doing business in the West Bank came as a shock to many, Ben & Jerry’s has a long history of partnering with groups dedicated to ending Israeli sovereignty through their involvement in the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

However, media organizations such as The New York Times and The Washington Post that covered the Ben & Jerry’s story for the most part cloaked BDS in social justice terminology — and thereby obfuscated the movement’s ultimate goal: namely, the destruction of the one and only Jewish state.

NYT, WaPo Ignore True Nature of BLM-BDS Connection
On the same day as the announcement, The New York Times published an article titled, “Ben & Jerry’s to Stop Selling Ice Cream in Israeli-Occupied Territories,” which described the connection between the ice cream company and Black Lives Matter:
With that, an unabashedly political company that over the years has embraced the Black Lives Matter and criminal justice reform movements also appeared to offer support to the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, which seeks to apply economic and political pressure on Israel on behalf of the Palestinians.”

The purported goal of the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement could not be nobler: that is, eradicating racism and combating senseless violence by law enforcement personnel. However, a small subset of activists with antisemitic and anti-Israel agendas have to some extent hijacked BLM.

The NYT is seemingly unaware of this.
Notice how BDS is depicted as little more than a Palestinian lobbyist group, while nowhere in the piece is the vehemently anti-Israel agenda pushed by its proponents noted. In reality, BDS aims to delegitimize the Jewish state by isolating it as a pariah among nations and disseminating the myth that the IDF commits human rights abuses, with the conclusion being that Israel has no right to exist.
IAC flies banner over Ben & Jerry’s factory in Vermont: ‘Serve Ice Cream, Not Hate’
The Israeli-American Council (IAC) flew a banner over Ben & Jerry’s factory and global headquarters in South Burlington, Vt., reading “Serve Ice Cream, Not Hate,” the social-media hashtag #BDSisHATE, and the American and Israeli flags as part of a campaign the IAC launched today demanding Ben & Jerry’s stop their boycott of part of the Israeli population.

The flyover on July 23 kicked off a global advocacy effort that features an online campaign urging people to call on Ben & Jerry’s and its parent company, Unilever, not to align with the BDS hate movement targeting Israel, and to renew the ice-cream maker’s license with its Israeli manufacturer.

On July 19, the longtime ice-cream maker announced that it would end sales in what it called “occupied Palestinian territory,” a move that created an immediate backlash in Jewish communities worldwide.

The IAC stated: “Ben & Jerry’s decision to stop selling its ice-cream to certain Israeli populations is a disgraceful surrender to the BDS hate movement, which promotes a culture of fear and violence and seeks to eliminate the Jewish homeland—the only democracy in the Middle East.” Subscribe to The JNS Daily Syndicate by email and never miss our top stories “Unilever should rid itself of this discriminatory and morally wrong act, stand by its corporate values and refocus its Ben & Jerry’s brand on serving ice-cream and not hate. We urge Unilever to discard this shameful decision, end this boycott and invest instead in peace and prosperity through dialogue.”

Ilhan Omar and the Islamophobia Industry
It was bad enough when Secretary of State Antony Blinken invited the U.N. to investigate racism in the U.S., but now Representative Ilhan Omar and 24 of her fellow Democrats want him to create a special envoy to investigate and combat “Islamophobia,” which they call “a genuinely global problem that the United States should tackle globally.”

This move was sadly unsurprising, as it came on the heels of the administration’s announcement that it had created a special envoy to investigate anti-Semitism. Nor, frankly, was it new for Omar, who regularly accuses anyone of “Islamophobia” after they’ve criticized her for saying something ignorant or patently anti-Semitic. It’s a diversionary tactic used to silence any criticism of Islam and a prophylactic device to insulate Islamists from responsibility for their words. Thus far it has worked for her.

Omar’s history of anti-Semitic statements is well known by now. What is less thoroughly explored, however, is how she defends herself after the inevitable criticism comes her way.

Running for Congress in 2018, Omar was forced to explain a tweet from 2012 in which she wrote, “Israel has hypnotized the world, may Allah awaken the people and help them see the evil doings of Israel.” As National Review’s David Harsanyi observed at the time, “Omar had a chance to retract, or at least refine, her statement. Instead, she doubled down . . . blaming Jewish Islamophobia for the backlash.” She has done so ever since.

By 2019 she had convinced her friends to join in. Representative Andre Carson (D., Ind.), also a Muslim, helped her deflect censure after the “It’s all about the Benjamins baby” controversy. Carson said, “I think all of us are incredibly inspired by Ilhan’s bravery as she continues to face this hatred and Islamophobia.”

Last month Omar stepped in it again by comparing the U.S. and Israel to the Taliban and Hamas. When some of her House colleagues criticized her inept comparison — all of whom, mind you, were Democrats — Omar’s reflexes kicked in and she blasted them with a counter-accusation: “The Islamophobic tropes in this statement are offensive. The constant harassment & silencing from the signers of this letter is unbearable.”
Shame on Schneider for backing Omar
Any goodwill that House Rep. Brad Schneider (D-Ill.) momentarily garnered by rebuking Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) from those offended by her anti-Semitic June 7 tweet has been resoundingly undone, thanks to his latest gaffe.

More concerned with maintaining the facade of Democratic Party unity, Schneider—in the most obsequious of gestures—actually joined Omar and other progressives in issuing a letter to Secretary of State Blinken calling on the Biden administration to create the position of “Special Envoy for Monitoring and Combating Islamophobia.”

This was a case of Schneider’s rubbing salt in the wound, as the position whose creation he was embracing is modeled on the existing office of Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Antisemitism, created in 2004.

Schneider—a practicing Jew, elected by Jews and from a congressional district with one of the highest concentrations of Jews in the state of Illinois—had appropriately labeled Omar’s vile comparison of the U.S. and Israel to Hamas and the Taliban as “offensive and misguided.” Omar called Schneider’s proper rebuke “Islamophobic.”

In his eagerness to welcome Omar back into the tent, however, Schneider unwittingly committed the same offense for which he had lambasted her. By equating the totally fraudulent offense of Islamophobia with the very real data as it pertains to anti-Semitism, he ignored the gross imbalance that exists between the two.

The most recent FBI statistics show that anti-Arab hate crimes in 2019 represented a mere 2.6 percent of the total. In contrast, anti-Jewish acts of hatred constituted 60 percent.
MP Sam Tarry pulls out of Palestine event with JVL activist who sued Labour
Labour MP Sam Tarry has withdrawn from speaking at a pro-Palestine event which was also to feature one of the activists who launched a failed High Court legal action against Sir Keir Starmer’s party.

A spokesperson for the Ilford South MP claimed he would not be attending Monday’s online launch of the Redbridge Palestine Solidarity Campaign branch due to the recent flooding in his constituency. A Labour Party source also confirmed to Jewish News that Tarry will not be attending Monday evening’s event.

Jewish News had emailed Tarry’s parliamentary office at the weekend to confirm his appearance at the event, which is being broadcast on Zoom, but there was no response. Our request to register for the Zoom event was approved at 2.26pm on Monday, with the email still confirming Tarry’s involvement.

But his spokesperson later claimed he had pulled out of the event on Saturday.

Tarry had been due to speak at the event alongside Jewish Voice For Labour member Diana Neslen – one of eight activists who lost a High Court claim against Labour earlier this month over the party’s disciplinary processes after they were investigated amid antisemitism claims.

Meanwhile reports on Monday suggested Tarry had faced questions within this constituency about his whereabouts over the weekend. His office said the MP did do a tour of the constituency “immediately after the torrential rain yesterday”.

Expelled Labour Members Considering Forming New Party
Thousands of far-left loons are considering forming a new party following their expulsion from Labour last week. Members of Labour Against the Witch-Hunt – one of four groups purged by Starmer for claiming the party’s antisemitism crisis was overstated – can be seen discussing the plans in an emergency Zoom meeting held on Saturday, during which they claim:
- Their expulsion proves “we have been a thorn in the side of the Labour Party Right, and we should take that as a compliment.”
- Starmer has been “pandering directly to the establishment“, and the far-left should capitalise on Labour’s impending collapse.
- The “biggest party in Britain today is the ex-Labour Party. People who’ve been expelled, people who’ve been suspended.”
- A new socialist party “is coming into creation, that will have the energy and the vitality that the Corbyn party was beginning to show that it had”.

The group are also planning to hold an event in Brighton at the same time as Labour Party conference (in what they’re affectionately calling a kind of “Counter-Conference“). One voice on the call even floated the idea of “forcing” Jeremy Corbyn to become their leader…
Antisemitism Now Has ‘Academic Mandate,’ Leading Expert on Academic Freedom Tells Indiana Conference on Jew-Hatred
The latest wave of anti-Zionism now sweeping through some academic departments at US universities is having a chilling effect on how scholarship on Zionism, Jewish history and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is being conducted, the former head of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) argues.

In a lengthy interview with The Algemeiner, Cary Nelson — the Jubilee Professor of Liberal Arts & Sciences Emeritus at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, who is a former president of the AAUP and current chair of the Alliance for Academic Freedom — said that he had personally been approached by pro-Israel faculty members concerned about their jobs.

“I already have a few emails from pro-Israel people asking things like, ‘what’s gonna happen to me? My department is now formally opposed to my beliefs,'” Nelson disclosed. “They’ll ask, ‘will I get sabbatical support? Do I get to teach my courses?'”

The author and editor of 35 books, including 2019’s “Israel Denial: Anti-Zionism, Antisemitism and the Faculty Campaign Against the Jewish State,” Nelson is a well-known veteran of the political conflict over the academic boycott of Israeli universities. What was different about the present situation, he explained, was the formal adoption of anti-Zionist positions by teaching departments, and not only professional academic bodies like the American Anthropological Association and the National Association of Women’s Studies, both of which endorsed the boycott of Israel in 2019.
The Tale of Two Ethnic Studies: A Case of Bait and Switch
When California lawmakers approved AB 2016, a landmark bill mandating the development of an ethnic studies model curriculum for high school students, they believed that teaching ethnic studies would promote mutual understanding and respect among members of the largest and most ethnically diverse public school student body in the nation.

Little did these legislators know, however, that they had been manipulated by a small group of highly motivated activists bent on hijacking the state’s educational and legislative infrastructure for their own radical political ends – which has also come at the expense of Jewish children and the Jewish community.

The ethnic studies saga begins with the Southern California-based Union del Barrio (UdB), a self-described “independent political organization” working towards “political revolution” and “the fundamental liberation of all raza, from Chile to Alaska.” The group’s ideological platform also includes a rejection of America’s political system and capitalism, the lionizing of violent revolutionaries, and the endorsement of anti-Zionism and the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement.

Focusing on K-12 education as a central component of its organizational mission, UdB states that its goal is to “build and maintain [an] organized raza liberation struggle within every school campus where our numbers are significant.” To that end, UdB embarked on a multi-year activist campaign to promote the teaching of “critical” ethnic studies in schools throughout the state. These classes would align with the group’s mission and worldview, and draw on “critical pedagogy” — a neo-Marxist educational philosophy whose practitioners are trained to use the educational system to advance anti-capitalist and anti-imperialist political struggles.

UdB’s campaign to promote the statewide teaching of ethnic studies began in earnest in 2013. Under the banner of “the People’s Campaign,” UdB engaged in “several months of hard work” to ensure that LA high school teacher — and committed UdB member — Jose Lara was elected to the school board of El Rancho Unified School District (ERUSD).
CUNY hops on the BDS bandwagon
CUNY campuses were once home to thriving student minyans for mincha, proudly worn kippahs and pro-Israel sentiment that was present and palpable, but not obtrusive and that never clashed publicly with anyone else's opinions. Students came to the university to broaden their minds, reach their academic potential and find the profession of their choice, not to bring politics into classroom lectures and teachers' unions. Arguments about political issues were held outside the study halls and if not, both sides were heard and a student was not supposed to know a lecturer's views on poitical or controversial topics from hearing his lectures. Culture was not cancelled, the word "woke" had to do with opening your eyes and making it to your classes on time, and both faculty and students were products of the great American melting pot of democracy at whose open gates Emma Lazarus' words were clearly to be seen at the Statue of Liberty.

Unfortunately, the Jew/Israel hater/educators in that New York City University System (CUNY) are now on the move. Apparently, some forces of nature have signaled that it's time for them to start crawling out of the woodwork to mate with other halls of ivy militant radicals in order to undermine democracy in lecture halls, labs and minds. Their proudly, openly aggressive goals to destroy the Jewish State are now blatantly obvious. The Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions fanatics are pushing the envelope, challenging the usually timid defenders of freedom and justice to take a stand. Just what brand of ice cream are these Jew haters eating?

The teachers' union at CUNY recently passed a deplorable resolution condemning Israel for its strong defense of its citizens in response to terrorist Hamas' deadly rocket attacks against them. These so called "educators" willingly ignore the fact that it was Hamas, from its Gaza territory, in its attempt to kill innocent Israelis in their homes, schools and synagogues, who initiated the conflict and Israel only retaliated defensively to shut down the barrages.

Israel has the military might and where-with-all to wipe out the entire Gaza population, but didn't. What is it that these supposed educators can't get straight? Don't they believe in a nation's right to self-defense or the punishment for violators not only of international law but of common moral decency and respect for the lives of others?

Have these professors, who have the power to mold young peoples' minds, lost their own? They must be held to account by their colleagues and removed from their positions of absolute power.
UC Davis Faculty Group Argues Departments Condemning Israel Violates School, State Policy
A group of faculty at University of California-Davis (UC Davis) have criticized the administration’s response to statements issued by several academic departments during the Gaza conflict, arguing that their positions violated school policy.

The letter — publicized on Wednesday by the Academic Engagement Network (AEN), a pro-Israel education nonprofit — came after a May 16 message denouncing Israel as an “apartheid state” and perpetrator of “settler colonialism” and “systemic racism.”

The latter was supported by the departments of Asian American Studies, African and African American Studies, American Studies, French and Italian Studies, and Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies, among other faculty members and campus programs.

“These anti-Israel statements misleadingly purport to be made in the name of the university,” argued Professor of Mathematics Joel Hass, chair of the Davis Faculty for Israel (DFI) group, which penned the letter.

“They are in clear conflict with both University of California policies and California law. We hope that the university will take steps to address this,” Hass told The Algemeiner on Friday. “Academics are entitled to make comments, however ignorant, bigoted or hateful, in their own names. It is a completely different matter when they speak in the name of the institution that employs them.”

Citing Section 92000 of the California Education Code, a law prohibiting the use of the University of California’s name or likeness to endorse or oppose a political movement or group, DFI argued that the act was “blatant political advocacy and a misuse of state-funded University of California resources.”
EU-Funded Researchers Seek to Cut European Grants to Israeli Academics
160 academics representing twenty-one countries signed an open letter demanding that the European Commission “use its leverage” to ban Israeli universities from receiving funds from a European Union (EU) program worth over $100 billion

Commending the EU’s existing bar on supporting Israeli researchers in the West Bank, the letter called on the body to go further and exclude all Israeli academic institutions, which it charged with “complicity in Israel’s regime of military occupation, settler colonialism and apartheid.”

The group took aim at Horizon Europe — the EU’s key R&D funding program, which has a budget of more than $112 billion through 2027 to support science, industrial competitiveness, and innovation in Europe.

“Given the emerging consensus among some of the most prominent human rights organizations, the crux of the problem goes beyond the Occupied Palestinian Territory,” it said. “It would be important to extend the prohibition of European research funds to include Israeli institutions complicit in Israel’s violations of Palestinian human rights, regardless of where they are situated.”

It also charged Israeli universities with perpetuating “racism” against Palestinian students, and violating their academic freedom. “The knowledge production of Israeli universities supports and rationalizes practices of ethnic cleansing,” it said.

Home Demolitions: ‘Blame Israel First’ Media Fail to Adequately Explain Complex Issue
From time to time, the issue of home demolitions by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) becomes the focus of media reporting on Israel. As with so much related to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the practice has proven divisive, with its fair share of proponents and detractors. On one hand, some say, demolitions serve as a deterrent and aid the prevention of additional terrorist attacks, especially emanating from the West Bank. On the other hand, some human rights organizations view demolitions as an illegitimate form of “collective punishment.”

While home demolitions have been an IDF counterterrorism strategy for decades, the issue occasionally garners international attention. For instance, in July 2021, the IDF demolished the West Bank home of Mantasser Shalabi, a US citizen responsible for fatally shooting 19-year-old Yehuda Guetta at Tapuah Junction in the West Bank on May 2, drawing criticism from the Biden administration.

While the official IDF policy is to deter future terrorist attacks by demolishing the homes of Palestinians who commit murderous acts against Israelis, Shalabi’s case was unique in that the home was occupied by his estranged wife and three children, all of them American citizens. At the time, State Department Spokesman Ned Price said, “we attach a good deal of priority to this, knowing that the home of an entire family shouldn’t be demolished for the action of one individual.”

Yet, despite US efforts to prevent the demolition, Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett made clear that Jerusalem would not modify its approach because, in his view, it would potentially put Israelis in danger.
BBC Sport again fails to deliver on anti-Israel bigotry
A report titled “Tokyo Olympics: Algerian judoka suspended and sent home after withdrawing to avoid Israeli opponent” appeared on the BBC Sport website and in the updates section of the BBC News website’s ‘Middle East’ page on July 24th.

In addition to the actual story of the suspension and withdrawal of accreditation from Fethi Nourine and his coach after the former refused to compete against an Israeli, the BBC Sport report provides what is apparently considered context.

“Speaking to Algerian TV, he said his political support for the Palestinian cause made it impossible to compete.”

Readers do not get an explanation as to what the phrase “the Palestinian cause” actually means and are not informed that Fatah’s Jibril Rajoub (who is also president of the ‘Palestine Olympic Committee’ despite his long record of exploiting sport as a means of delegitimising Israel) later met with Nourine and endorsed his action.

“Rajoub posted photos of himself with Algerian judoka Fethi Nourine on social media, writing that he appreciates Nourine’s “courageous stance refusing normalization.””

Readers are however provided with a link to a superficial backgrounder first produced for younger BBC audiences by ‘Newsbeat’ in May.
Munich Olympics massacre perpetrators still euphemised by the BBC
However in the rest of the report and the photo caption, the BBC reverts to its long-standing policy of avoiding describing the perpetrators of that terror attack as terrorists.

“Palestinian gunmen took 11 Israeli athletes hostage in Munich’s Olympic village”

“A moment’s silence commemorated the 11 Israeli athletes killed by Palestinian gunmen in 1972.”

“The Munich massacre on 5 September 1972 is one of the darkest chapter’s [sic] in Olympic history.

Eleven members of the Israeli team were taken hostage inside the Olympic village by Palestinian gunmen from the Black September group.

Two were shot dead almost immediately, while the others were killed during a gun battle with West German police at a nearby airfield, as the militants tried to take them out of the country.”

Clearly that latter sentence does not communicate either the acts of torture carried out by the terrorists that have been known for over six years or the incompetence of the German security forces. It also tells readers nothing about the terrorist group responsible for the atrocity and its associations.

As is well known, the BBC’s editorial guidelines encourage the use of euphemisms such as ‘gunman’ and ‘militant’, claiming that “[t]he word ‘terrorist’ itself can be a barrier rather than an aid to understanding”. It is nevertheless odd that although after nearly half a century the corporation is finally prepared to accurately define the Munich Olympics massacre as a terrorist attack, it still refrains from describing the perpetrators as terrorists.
Toronto Star Scribe Ignored How TDSB Employee Shared Materials Venerating Palestinian Terror Group
For the second time, Shree Paradkar has covered the story of Toronto District School Board (TDSB) employee Javier Davila (“TDSB reinstates student equity adviser who shared resources on Palestinian human rights”), who shared anti-Israel misinformation among TDSB staff. And, for the second time, Paradkar has omitted critical information about this TDSB employee, and why his initial suspension – and subsequent reinstatement – is so problematic.

Davila, who serves as a student equity program adviser at the TDSB, had sent anti-Israel materials to educators and colleagues at the board, including texts referring to Israel as a colonizer, a truly defamatory claim to make about the world’s only Jewish State, home to millions of Jews living in their ancestral and historic homeland.

But that is far from the worst offense committed by Davila.

In addition to de-legitimizing Israel and sending materials promoting a boycott of the Jewish State, Davila sent literature to his email list, explicitly sharing work by well-known members of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), Laila Khaled, and Ghassan Kanafani.

Time to Put the United Church of Christ on Trial for Antisemitism
Earlier this month, the United Church of Christ (UCC)’s General Synod passed a “peacemaking” resolution that declared Israel guilty of sins against the Palestinian people. The resolution repeats the narrative offered about the evils of the Jewish state broadcast by Palestinian Christians in the West Bank and eastern Jerusalem, who have been demonizing Israel for decades.

Predictably enough, the resolution, which was passed with 462 yeas, 78 nays, and 18 abstentions in an online vote, made no mention of any sins perpetrated by the Palestinians or their leaders in the Gaza Strip or West Bank.

For example, the resolution had nothing to say about the Palestinian Authority (PA)’s pay-to-slay program, nothing about the anti-Jewish incitement broadcast by media outlets controlled by Fatah and Hamas, and nothing about the genocidal antisemitism broadcast during Friday sermons by imams preaching in the Al-Aqsa Mosque. And the resolution said nothing about Hamas rocket attacks directed at civilians, nor the refusal of Palestinian leaders to negotiate in good faith with Israel, having turned down numerous peace offers over the years.

With the passage of this resolution, the UCC’s General Synod has revealed itself to be a bystander to anti-Jewish violence in the Holy Land, and a promoter of a dishonest narrative that justifies violence against Jews in the rest of the world.

The resolution speaks in vague terms about the evils of “supersessionism” and antisemitism, but does not acknowledge the role these ideologies play in fomenting hostility toward Jews and Israel in Muslim-majority environments in the Middle East — nor the UCC’s own role in fomenting this hatred.
Swastika carved near office of antisemitism envoy at US State Department
A swastika was found on Monday carved into an elevator at the United States State Department, near the office of the special envoy to monitor and combat antisemitism.

In a letter to State Department employees on Tuesday, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken updated staffers that the swastika had been removed from the elevator in the Harry S. Truman building and that the incident will be investigated.

“As this painfully reminds us, antisemitism isn’t a relic of the past,” Blinken wrote. “It’s still a force in the world, including close to home. And it’s abhorrent. It has no place in the United States, at the State Department or anywhere else. And we must be relentless in standing up and rejecting it.”

The secretary added that antisemitism “often goes hand in hand” with other types of bigotry.

Addressing the State Department’s Jewish employees, Blinken said, “please know how grateful we are for your service and how proud we are to be your colleagues,” adding that the feeling is extended to his entire staff.

According to Axios, which first broke the story, the elevator where the swastika was found is within a heavily monitored perimeter with security cameras placed at the entrances.

Israel health team assists Philippines in COVID-19 response
A delegation of four senior health professionals arrived in the Philippines this week for a six-day visit to share best practices in combating the coronavirus pandemic.

“This mission is focused on how to respond to the COVID situation,” Philippines Ambassador to Israel Macairog S. Alberto told The Jerusalem Post. “The team will discuss how to prevent, isolate, detect and treat [the virus], and reintegration strategies that could be used by the Philippines based on the experience of Israel to combat COVID-19.”

The group of professionals is composed of Shira Peleg, head nurse in the Emergency Department of Tel Aviv Sourasky Medical Center; Eyad Jeries, trauma coordinator for Galilee Medical Center; Chaim Markos Rafalowski, disaster management coordinator for Magen David Adom; and Dr. Guy Choshen, a senior physician in Sourasky’s COVID-19 department.

The mission was arranged by the Health Ministry’s International Relations department, with the support of the Foreign Ministry and the Israeli Embassy in the Philippines.

The group has meetings with members of the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases and with National Task Force Against COVID-19 chief implementer Carlito Galvez Jr., among other top health officials.
'Treat her gently': How an Israeli military search team helped recover majority of Surfside victims
When Lt. Col. Golan Vach, commander of the Israeli Defense Forces’ National Rescue Unit, located a man’s ring while searching the debris field of the collapsed Champlain Towers South in Surfside, he knew immediately to whom it belonged.

He knew, because he had met with families of the scores of missing people. He had studied photographs of the missing, learned about their possessions — a necklace with a heart pendant, a gold watch, a blue table.

He had learned about the habits of each potential victim and even knew in which room each likely would have been during the collapse.

And, amid unimaginable tangles of rebar jutting out from a sea of concrete that was once their homes, he knew precisely where each victim would be located.

He personally found 20. His team, he said, recovered 81 by the time the last member departed Surfside on July 11. In all, the Israeli team found about 84% of the nearly 100 victims.

“This is the way we were working, like detectives,” Vach said. “You have these stupid, simple, brilliant signs. You dig here, and you will find the people you are looking for. And it worked.”

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