Thursday, August 12, 2021

08/12 Links Pt2: What Shakespeare knew about anti-Zionism; Black Community Pays Dearly for Israel-haters’ Agenda; The Ford Foundation and Anti-Semitism

From Ian:

What Shakespeare knew about anti-Zionism
This past week, there was an anti-Israel protest in Brooklyn. It was promoted by, among other groups, Jewish Voice for Peace, an anti-Israel group.

The demonstrators chanted: “We don’t want no two states, we want all of it.” “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.”

The gloves are off; the pretenses, gone.

They want a world without Israel.

Their banners: “Zionism is terrorism”; “We will free Palestine within our lifetime.”

And: “Globalize the intifada.”

“Intifada” is Arabic for uprising or rebellion. In its most current usages, it refers to organized acts of violence and terrorist attacks against Israelis. There have been more than a thousand victims.

The intifada has centered itself on Israel proper.

No longer.

“Globalize the intifada” means that Jews will be uncomfortable and unsafe, wherever they are.

Let me remind you: Jews. Not Israelis. Not Zionists.


Let us imagine the scenario. On the Upper West Side, for example. Protesters walk through the streets, accosting passersby.

You think they will ask: “Are you Israeli?”

No. They will be going after Jews. How they will know who is Jewish is a whole other question.

But, let us imagine the frightening dialogue.

“Are you Jewish?”

“Yes, but … ” (guilty with an explanation).

I am a victim of history. This triggers every fear of Jewish vulnerability that is within me.

What else did you think that “globalize the intifada” was supposed to mean? A letter-writing campaign?
Joshua Washington: Black Community Pays Dearly for Israel-haters’ Agenda
Cori Bush rose to power, defeating incumbent Lacy Clay, and running on an anti-Israel, anti-law enforcement platform. One of her positions is that aid to Israel should stop and be used for homelessness in the US, because, according to Bush, “the same equipment that they used to brutalize us is the same equipment that we send to the Israeli military to police and brutalize Palestinians.” This lie is what has been coined by anti-Israel activists as the Deadly Exchange Campaign, in which a lie is propagated about Israel that it teaches the US how to kill Black people in America. Not only is this not true, it disproportionately focuses on the one Jewish state while US police departments work with many other countries as well. Along with this distortion of the truth, Bush also calls Israel an “apartheid state,” and Jews in Israel “occupiers” of their own indigenous land. Now that she is in Congress, she continues to champion these points and policies while violence in her district grows and her constituents, many of them children, are being killed.

This is the anathema that is Black Lives Matter, and all those who bear the “defund the police” slogan. Not only is the slogan not supported by the vast majority of Black Americans, the implementation of this slogan as policy is actually destroying vulnerable black communities. It was not the police that burned down Pastor Corey Brooks’ Project H.O.O.D. facilities in Chicago. It was not the police that destroyed the black business district in Kenosha, WI in 2020. It was not due to the police that parents of Oakland, CA were mourning the recent murders of their children; that mourning was, however, disrupted by an anti-police group called Antifa, who began shouting down the parents who were speaking to further their anti-police agenda. When speaking of tone-deafness, it is difficult to get much more tone-deaf than disrupting a group of people you claim to support to force your narrative of their oppression onto them. Yet, here we are.

Congresswoman Cori Bush is wildly hypocritical and a danger to the black community for the policies she pushes, but she is not a trailblazer. She is simply carrying out the reckless, anti-Israel agenda set by Black Lives Matter. Not speaking the truth about this matter will result in the deaths of more of the people they purport to protect, while using their wealth and privilege to protect themselves from their own failed and destructive policies.

Ruth Wisse (WSJ): Anti-Semitism Isn't Merely Another Kind of Hate
The Arab League launched the original pan-Arab boycott of Israel in 1945, defining any Jewish presence in Palestine as an occupation of Arab territory. The U.S. intervened to thwart the boycott because Israel's destruction was inconsistent with American values. But America has changed. At the end of the 20th century, a home-grown boycott, divestment and sanctions movement became an American arm of the war against Israel, uniting a self-defined progressive coalition on the side of Arab-Muslim rejectionism.

Anti-Semitism is more than just a form of hatred; people organize against the Jews as part of an ideological struggle. Zionists who thought anti-Semitism was directed against them because of their dispersion were surprised to find it was even easier to blame them in their homeland. Since 1945, the driving force of anti-Jewish politics has been the Arab-Muslim war against the Jewish state, supported by Marxist ideology.
Unpacked: Beyond Left or Right: Whose Fault is Antisemitism? | Antisemitism, Explained
While the Holocaust may be over, antisemitism is still very much alive. So, whose fault is it? And how do we address it? The sad truth is that antisemitism has always been spread by offenders across the ideological spectrum. That's why it is key to focus on the fighting antisemitic ideas and not get hung up on the identities of whoever is perpetuating them. When we learn to rebuke anti-Jewish bigotry no matter who spreads it, we will be one step closer to defeating it.

Report: Family of Sarah Halimi, Murdered in France, Files Complaint in Israel Against Killer
The family of Sarah Halimi, a Jewish woman murdered four years ago in Paris, has filed a criminal complaint in Israel against the perpetrator, who was found unfit for trial in France due to drug consumption, Ynet reported on Tuesday.

Invoking a law allowing Israeli citizens to file complaints in Israel about antisemitic crimes committed abroad, lawyers Mordechai Tzivin and Gilles-William Goldnadel, representing the Halimi family, are demanding that the perpetrator be tried in the Jewish state.

This is the first time the law has been invoked, according to Ynet.

Halimi, 65, was killed in 2017 by 27-year-old Kobili Traoré, her Muslim neighbor, who beat her up and threw her out of the window of her apartment while shouting “Allahu Akbar” [“God is great” in Arabic].

The French Court Cassation’s Supreme Court of Appeals in April upheld a 2019 ruling by a lower tribunal that Traoré, an immigrant from Mali with French citizenship, was not responsible for his actions at the time of the killing due to a delusional state caused by heavy cannabis consumption. He currently resides in a psychiatric facility.

In the wake of the ruling, Jewish communities in Paris, New York, London and Tel Aviv staged mass demonstrations in April to demand that Traoré be prosecuted. An online rally with the same purpose was held in May as well with some 40,000 participants, including leaders from France and Canada.
The Ford Foundation and Anti-Semitism
According to NGO Monitor, the Ford Foundation grantees include Adalah (Palestinian NGO), and in Israel such anti-Israel groups as Breaking the Silence (anti-Israel Defense Forces), B’Tselem, Bimkom, Rabbis for Human Rights, Physicians for Human Rights-Israel (PHR-I), and the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI), to name a few…

Adalah engages in active lawfare campaigns. It accuses Israel of “war crimes,” and it promotes arms embargos against Israel. Adalah was among a group of NGO’s who called for a UN Committee of Inquiry into the events of the 2014 (Protective Edge Operation) Gaza War. Adalah was involved in the creation of the Movement for Black Lives (MBL), whose platform supports the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel, it also calls Israel an “apartheid state committing genocide.” The Borealis Philanthropy of the Black-led Movement Fund (BLMF) funds the MBL, which receives it support from the Ford Foundation.

The Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) is another organization that is actively engaged in lawfare campaigns against Israel, and Israeli officials. It promotes the BDS campaign, and accuses Israel of “war crimes and crimes against humanity.” CCR works closely with the Palestine Legal, an NGO that is highly active in BDS campaigns, particularly on college campuses. In 2015, CCR received $342,500 from the Ford Foundation.

It should be known to a foundation such as Ford, that anti-Semitism and hate crimes against Jews in America are proportionally much higher than such crimes against either Blacks or Muslims. Mark Perry, a Senior Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), cited the 2019 FBI data showing that Jews were 2.6 times more likely than Blacks, and 2.2 times more than likely than Muslims to be victims of hate crimes in America. Perry wrote, “Hate crimes data released last November by the FBI for 2019 revealed that there were 2,391 Black/African-American victims of hate crimes, 1,032 Jewish victims, and 227 Muslim victims. Adjusting for the population of each group in 2019 (43.98 million Blacks, 7.5 million Jews, and 3.61 million Muslims) the hate crime victimization per 100,000 population of each group were 13.8 for Jews, 6.3 for Muslims, and 5.4 for Blacks.”

In view of the racist and anti-Semitic legacy of the Ford Foundation founder, and the subsequent support the foundation has given to anti-Semitic and anti-Israel organizations, it would be the decent and morally corrective thing for the foundation to devote its resources to combating the injurious effects of its anti-Semitic founder. The Ford Foundations continuous support for the vile and anti-Semitic Palestinian propaganda, and their American enablers, while ignoring pervasive anti-Semitism on US campuses and in cities, is hardly an admirable reflection on the Ford Foundation and its president, Darren Walker.
UK Spends Millions Funding NGO Waging "Proxy War" Against Israel
The UK has spent around £9 million over the past three years funding an aid organisation accused of waging “proxy war” against Israel, according to an Israeli research institute.

NGO Monitor says that the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) has subsidised hundreds of cases brought annually on behalf of Palestinians that challenge Israeli policy with the help of UK money.

NGO Monitor also says the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office has shown a “deliberate lack of transparency” over its funding of the council.

A spokesman for the institute said, “I am sure the British taxpayer would be interested in why their money is funding an organisation which actively works against one of the UK’s major allies in the Middle East, and why there is a complete lack of transparency in a UK ministry.”

Three years ago NGO Monitor issued a report into the council, entitled Flooding the Courts: the Norwegian Refugee Council’s European-Funded Proxy War.

It accused the council of “massive and unprecedented political campaigns exploiting the Israeli legal system”, adding that if the council’s involvement had been carried out directly by donor governments, this would be regarded as “an unacceptable violation of international norms, including the principle of national sovereignty”.

The report said that many of the NRC’s partners promoted boycott of Israel and that overall the council’s “politicised activities and partnerships violate the humanitarian principles of neutrality, impartiality, independence, and humanity.”
Don't anyone dare lecture me about Race
Privilege? White Privilege? Not for Orthodox Jews.

From the day my father’s leukemia left me an orphan at age 14, with my mother left challenged to feed, house, and educate a family of four kids, I have had to scrap and scrape for everything I ever have had. If I still am a bit rough at the edges, even now, it is because I have had no privilege ever in my life. I had to buy an etiquette book to learn the right way to hold a knife and fork, continental style, and it took a person attending one of my speeches to tell me afterwards that my necktie needed to extend down a bit longer.

Success in life is not about privilege, and no one successful ever got there by whining and by being consumed with jealousy of others’ good fortunes. Rather, it is about taking the cards dealt and learning to play them wisely. It is about knowing when to believe in yourself, when to take a prudent risk built on that belief, and when to desist. It is about knowing whom to consult and understanding what motivates others to encourage or discourage.

I was a boy orphaned from his Father at age 14. I encountered my share of challenges — instances of forceful anti-Semitism in the street and of elegant dignified country-club anti-Semitism at the office, a tough first marriage, moments of profound unfairness at the work place, being targeted by backbiters, and financial setbacks caused by others who took advantage of a young part-orphanwho lacked a father’s guidance while being too idealistic and trusting in the inherent good of all people to realize when I was being cheated and defrauded.

That all is part of life.

Free countries and just societies do not guarantee equal results, only equal opportunities to mess up or to succeed. That is what propelled America to greatness and what changed the economic trajectory of Israel’s “Start-Up Nation” once the shackles of Labor socialism were removed . Not “diversity, equity, and inclusiveness” — code words for repressed diversity of thought and government engineering of people’s lives. Rather: Equal Opportunity.

In such a world, Critical Race Theory deserves a special trash can all its own. And don’t anyone dare lecture me about race.
Rep. Ilhan Omar’s Spokesman Says AIPAC Ad ‘Puts Lawmaker’s Life at Risk’
Rep. Ilhan Omar’s (D-MN) spokesperson Jeremy Slevin hit out at pro-Israel lobbying organization the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) for a social media ad campaign that he said “put the congresswoman’s life at risk,” reported The Jerusalem Post.

The ad in question was posted to Facebook and included a picture of Omar, on which was written “For Ilhan Omar, there is no difference between America and the Taliban. Between Israel and Hamas. Between Democracies and terrorists. Tell Rep. Omar: Condemn terrorists, not America.” The picture itself was captioned “Stand WITH America. Stand AGAINST Terrorists.”

Slevin took to Twitter to blast AIPAC, claiming that the language used was “almost identical” to the death threats that she receives.

“It shouldn’t have to be stated, but baselessly linking Muslim-Americans to terrorism is *the* textbook example of Islamophobia and is routinely used to silence advocacy for Palestinian human rights,” he added.

Omar had additional support from familiar sources; IfNotNow co-founder Max Berger labeled AIPAC’s ad “despicable” and Michigan Democratic congresswoman Rashida Tlaib tweeted succinctly, “I am so sick of this s**t.”

Responding to the charges, AIPAC replied that “Slevin’s baseless attack can’t deflect from Omar’s attack on America and Israel,” and argued that it had merely used the congresswoman’s own words in its campaign against her.

Ilhan Omar: AIPAC Attack Ads Put my Life at Risk
The AIPAC anti-Omar ad was one of three versions that run on Facebook, each reaching an estimated 1 million users. Another ad shows an image of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), a third targets progressives like Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt), Rep Mark Pocan (D-Wis), and Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich).

Here’s an amusing tidbit: Congressman Mark Pocan, who is openly gay, in May told The Nation about the ad attacking him: “Clearly, AIPAC is fanning the flames of Islamophobia rather than peace, and I think the graphics and rhetoric are deceitful, I just wish that they supported the Israeli and Palestinian people like Ilhan Omar does. They could really learn from her.”

Does the nice homosexual representative from Wisconsin not know that LGBT people in the Palestinian Authority and even more so in the Gaza Strip are harassed, imprisoned, tortured, and executed? Does he not know that Israel is the only country in the Middle East where gay people are free to exercise their full civil rights, including staging pride marches in every city including the capital Jerusalem?

Come to think of it, LGBTQ folks should feel serious Islamophobia because the Islamists openly hunt and kill them.

A phobia is a type of anxiety disorder defined by a persistent and excessive fear of an object or situation. Combining it with the term Islam was an ingenious feat of public relations, rendering all criticism of this violent tradition irrational, with a dash of bigotry. So, in the spirit of Philo-Islamism, love of Islam, we invite the honorable Congressman Pocan to come visit Gaza with his husband Philip and, you know, mingle.

Here’s some historic perspective on Islamophobia:

PreOccupiedTerritory: It’s Not Fair That We Palestinians Don’t Get To Lord It Over Jews As Our Ancestors Did By Issa Amro, human rights activist (satire)
Progress comes in many forms. The adoption of human rights principles has advanced civilization, and the Palestinian cause in particular, to places it never would have achieved absent those universal tenets. But not all change brings positive outcomes, and here I refer to the longstanding second-class status that Muslims of previous generations assigned to Jews under their dominion, a status that, with the establishment of Israel, effectively disappeared from the Muslim world, and now we Muslims, Palestinians in particular, have no one we can look at and think, “Hey, I might be poor, unhealthy, powerless, and otherwise miserable, but at least I’m a societal rung above that.”

We Muslim Arabs, Palestinians in particular, have long nurtured an inferiority complex vis-à-vis the West: Islamic society once boasted the most glorious medieval bastions of scholarship, philosophy, mathematics, poetry, and other noble disciplines, preserving as it did the classical works that Christian Europe neglected in all but isolated pockets. But since then Dar-al-Islam has seen steady decline in lasting temporal power and leadership in those intellectual pursuits. But we still insist that we embody the most enlightened and righteous culture, for unlike those infidels, we represent Allah, and Allah would not relegate His True Prophet’s followers to anything below the summit of human achievement!

Frustration with the brutal reality of foreign technological, cultural, and political superiority to our own culture has long manifested in attempts to preserve what superiority we do have, specifically our local dominance over Jews and other religious or ethnic minorities. Bans on construction of new synagogues; prohibitions barring Jews from riding horses; limits on the heights of Jewish structures, lest they grow taller than a mosque; discriminatory taxes; bans on holding weapons; and just general legal inferiority that invited abuse – all those remnants of Islamic superiority to the Jewish infidel have all but disappeared from our lives now that Jews have a country of their own and an army to defend them from our righteous pillage and killing sprees. Our dignity demands the restoration of the societal status quo ante of Islamic rule over Jews!
University of East Anglia Jewish Students Reject Call to Replace Leading Definition of Antisemitism
Jewish students at the University of East Anglia on Tuesday rejected efforts to replace the leading definition of antisemitism, less than two years after its adoption by the school’s student union.

The day prior, the student group Decolonize UAE published a call to divest from companies “facilitating illegal Israeli settlements” and replace the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) Working Definition of Antisemitism, which has been adopted by scores of governments, universities and other institutions.

The group — which describes itself as “student-led society … committed to decolonial initiatives” at the school — charged the IHRA definition with “[making] expressing Palestinian experience of colonialism and its attendant violence punishable.”

“We reject the use of educational institutions as a tool to police the anti-colonial, anti-racist organizing of Palestinians, their allies, and all oppressed peoples,” the group said on Instagram. It called instead for the adoption instead of the Jerusalem Declaration of Antisemitism, an alternative definition presented by critics of the IHRA standard that explicitly excludes boycotts of Israel.

The Decolonize group also castigated the university for its relationship with the British bank Barclays, which it accused of “underwriting the Israeli government” and facilitating “ethnic cleansing against the Palestinians.”
Citing Israel, protesters accuse US weapons firm of abuses, block plant entrance
A group of activists blocked the entrance to a Raytheon plant in Rhode Island on Thursday morning to protest what they allege is the company’s role in the “killing of civilians” and “other human rights abuses.”

Some members of a group called the Fang Collective chained themselves to a car next to the guard shack at the entrance to the Portsmouth plant.

Protestors held up a placard with “Palestine” written on it and chanted “From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free,” a slogan often seen as a call for Israel’s destruction.

Law enforcement, firefighters, and tow trucks had also responded to the scene.

The group said in an emailed statement that it was protesting the Waltham, Massachusetts-based defense contractor’s “weapon sales to Saudi Arabia and Israel, and their involvement in enforcing the US- Mexican border.”

“Raytheon profits from the killing of civilians, families, and children in Palestine, Yemen, and elsewhere,” the group said.

It claimed to have succeeded in blocking off the plant for five hours and that at least one person was arrested.

Why Do Media Ignore ‘Other’ Palestinian Humanitarian Issues?
In the last week, Israel has once again been thrust into international headlines following the outbreak of hostilities along its northern border with Lebanon. Rocket attacks claimed by Palestinian terrorist factions and, most recently, Hezbollah, as well as the retaliatory shelling and airstrikes by the IDF were widely reported on.

However, something that was almost barely worth a mention in these articles is that Lebanon is currently on the verge of total collapse due to an economic and political crisis. Furthermore, rarely is a reference made to Iranian terror proxy Hezbollah’s role in deepening the emerging catastrophe, including by having rejected a comprehensive bailout program by the International Monetary Fund.

Perhaps most striking of all is the absence of any articles in the mainstream press that draw attention to the plight of one of the hardest-hit groups in Lebanon – the Palestinians who live there.

The misery of this 300,000-strong population of mainly “refugees” cannot be understated: they are barred from various fields of employment, in many cases prevented from owning property and are deprived access to education. Charities have noted that their already bad situation has been compounded by the country’s ongoing crisis and now many do not even have enough food to eat.

Yet, no articles about this topic have appeared in any of the mainstream publications that normally like to highlight perceived injustices faced by Palestinians. According to Honestreporting’s own data, Palestinian refugees in Lebanon were mentioned by all news sites in the United States a total of only 86 times in the last 30 days. Over the same period, Palestinians in Gaza were written about more than 5,000 times.

Likewise, social media mentions – especially from celebrities who pride themselves on highlighting the world’s injustices – have been quiet about this worsening problem.

Case in point: Supermodel Bella Hadid this week used her Instagram platform and its close to 50 million followers to simultaneously advertise her Vogue cover shoot and call for a “free Palestine.” Despite the fact her father was once briefly a refugee in Lebanon before emigrating to the United States and becoming a real estate magnate, she has yet to specifically address the issue.

Is it any guess why media choose to ignore this Palestinian issue yet churn out numerous articles about residents of the Gaza Strip?
CNN Buries Truth About Palestinian Prisoners Released in Gilad Shalit Deal
For example, 20 years ago this week, Ahlam Ahmad al-Tamimi orchestrated the deadly suicide bombing at a Sbarro pizzeria in Jerusalem that killed 15 civilians and injured more than 100. She was among those released in the Shalit deal.

Another one of the freed prisoners, Yahya Sinwar, is currently Hamas’ leader in the Gaza Strip. Sinwar spearheaded Hamas’ rocket assault against the Jewish state during the 11-day conflict in May, when the terror group launched some 4,300 rockets at Israeli cities and towns. Twelve Israeli citizens and an IDF soldier were killed. An additional 312 civilians and three soldiers were wounded.

Evidently, nor were many of the Palestinians released repentant. Indeed, following the murder of three Israeli teenagers in June 2014, an event that precipitated a 50-day war between Israel and Hamas, Israeli security forces rearrested over 50 Palestinian terrorists who had been freed in exchange for Shalit.

And consider this: According to the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency), Israeli forces in 2013 alone thwarted more than forty terror attacks planned by Palestinians released in the Shalit deal concluded only two years earlier.

Nor is it the first time that HonestReporting has called out CNN for omitting crucial context from one of its “Fact Facts.”

By burying the truth about the Gilad Shalit prisoner swap, CNN is minimizing the sacrifices Israel made to secure one of its citizens, which is further evidence of the extreme value the Jewish state places on life.

All the while, it’s whitewashing Palestinian terrorism.
Guardian corrects one of Mohammed el-Kurd's lies
As we demonsrated to editors, even the pro-Hamas outlet MEMO didn’t make that claim, alleging only that the extremist MK visited the neighborhood and was in the general vicinity of Kurd’s home.

That one complaint was upheld, the sentence revised and the following Editor’s Note added:

We don’t typically charge contributors with outright lying, but in the case it seems warranted as you’d think Kurd would remember whether the far-right MK was near his property or literally inside of it.

However, there are two more substantive errors we complained about that Guardian editors are still ‘investigating’, including the simply bizarre claim that Israel has imposed a “blockade” on Sheikh Jarrah, and we’ll update this post when we’ve received a response.
German Prosecutors Prepare Dozen-Plus Cases Against Nazi War-Crime Suspects
Prosecutors confirmed last week that a 100-year-old man is deemed fit to stand trial in October for serving as a guard at the Sachsenhausen concentration camp and for his alleged complicity in the killings of more than 3,500 people between 1942 and 1945. The man, whose name was not released, was also allegedly involved in the shooting of Soviet prisoners of war and helped kill others with the poison gas Zyklon B, according to JTA.

Irmgard Furchner, a 96-year-old woman, will also face trial this year for her alleged work as a secretary in the Stutthof concentration camp in Nazi-occupied Poland, according to The Washington Post. She will be tried at a juvenile court because she was a teenager at the time of the crime.

At the same time, nine investigations are underway with six more preliminary probes against elderly suspects, according to Thomas Will, head of the Central Office for the Investigation of National Socialist Crimes. In almost every case, the charge is for being an accessory to murder by working at a death camp.

There is no statute of limitations for murder and accessory to murder in Germany.

“The passage of time is no barrier to justice when it comes to the heinous crimes of the Holocaust, and it is right that even now, the German authorities are pursuing cases relating to these dark acts,” said Karen Pollock, chief executive of the Holocaust Education Trust. “We hope that these trials will help to ensure that the truth of the past is known, especially for the next generation, as well as bringing some comfort to the survivors who are still with us.”
On this day: 13 Jews killed by Stalin in Night of the Murdered Poets
August 12, 2021 marks the 69th anniversary of the Night of Murdered Poets, an incident when the Soviet Union executed 13 Jewish intellectuals by firing squad in a Moscow prison.

The 13 executed were part of a group of 15 defendants, each of the 13 were accused of a litany of crimes ranging from treason and espionage, but the trial itself only happened following around three years of the defendants being tortured and beaten in isolation.

The trial itself was highly unusual, though in accordance with Stalin-era Soviet law, as it lacked prosecutors or defense attorneys.

What is especially notable about this case, however, was its relation to the Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee (JAC), an organization formed during the Holocaust to help Jews around the world support the Soviet Union in fighting the Nazis.

Following the war, JAC worked to protect the remnants of Jewish culture in Eastern Europe. However, the organization seemed to have drawn the ire of Soviet premier Joseph Stalin.

As noted by the World Jewish Congress, Stalin feared that JAC's loyalties were with Israel, Zionism and the US, and thought that its well-known usage of Yiddish was evidence of an attempt to form a distinct language and culture independent of the USSR.

In Stalin's efforts to crack down on the organization, its chairman, Solomon Mikhoels, an actor and director of the Moscow State Jewish Theater, was killed in 1948 in Minsk. His death appeared at first glance to be a hit-and-run car accident. However, most sources agree that this was actually an assassination on the orders of Stalin himself.

Of the 15 on trial, five of them were Yiddish writers that were part of the JAC. The other 10 were associated with the organization.

Russian scientist, 82, beaten on Moscow bus in antisemitic attack
An 82-year-old prominent Russian scientist was assaulted on a bus in Moscow by a much younger assailant who shouted that “Hitler should have finished the job, so I’ll do it for him.”

The assailant began hitting Vladimir Tselin, a researcher of radiation who has worked on the Russian space program, soon after Tselin boarded a bus on his way to work last Friday, the news site MK reported Sunday.

Shouting about Jews and Hitler, the man followed Tselin out of the bus after Tselin got off to escape the assault.

No one on the bus or on the street intervened, according to the report, which did not say whether Tselin is Jewish. Tselin did tell MK he believes the assault was a hate crime “based on ethnic grounds.”

Physical assaults on Jews are rare in Russia, where authorities have pursued a tough stance on such hate crimes.
French Antisemitic Website Disappears From View as Interior Minister Denounces ‘Scandalous, Nauseating’ Content
A vitriolic antisemitic website in France inspired by a World War II era pro-Nazi weekly newspaper has been denounced by the country’s interior minister, who warned that its authors will likely be the subject of criminal charges.

In a Twitter post on Tuesday, Gérald Darmanin eviscerated the site “Je Suis Partout” — “I Am Everywhere” — as “deeply scandalous and nauseating.” The interior minister added that he had already reported the site’s existence to law enforcement, urging that its backers be prosecuted and the website closed “as quickly as possible.”

A later tweet from Darmanin stated that web hosting companies and social media managers “must recognize their responsibilities.”

The site is no longer online, although it remains unclear whether its sudden disappearance earlier this week was because of French government intervention or an independent decision by “Je Suis Partout” administrators to migrate to another hosting company.

The website is named after a weekly newspaper that was published in France during the 1940-44 Nazi occupation. The publisher of the original “Je Suis Partout” — French Nazi Robert Brasillach — was sentenced to death as a collaborator with the Nazi authorities in 1945.

Meanwhile, the website’s main offering is an elaborate graphic entitled “Ils Sont Partout” — “They Are Everywhere” — that purports to show through a flowchart how Jews control the media and other key industries in France.

Microsoft acquires Israeli startup Peer5 to improve video streaming software
Microsoft has acquired Israeli video streaming firm Peer5 to improve live streaming for its business communication platform, Microsoft Teams.

The tech giant did not disclose details of the acquisition in its Tuesday post announcing the deal.

Peer5’s technology will help businesses using Microsoft’s software keep up with streaming needs as communications increasingly move online, especially since the onset of the pandemic.

“As live streaming becomes more common in the workplace, large organizations need reliable enterprise video streaming solutions,” Microsoft said. “We have acquired Peer5 to expand our ability for delivering secure, high-quality, large-scale live video streaming with optimized network performance in Teams.”

Peer5 was founded by Israelis Hadar Weiss, Guy Paskar and Shachar Zohar in 2012. It has only raised $4.3 million, according to Start-Up Nation Central.

It offers an enterprise content delivery network (eCDN) that runs in-browser to optimize bandwidth usage with mesh networking technology. Microsoft said the technology would help customers with large-scale meetings and virtual events.

Peer5 said it has powered live online events with up to 2 million concurrent users, and its products have been used by over 1 billion people in total.
Israel’s 10 Hottest Startups in 2021
Israel’s tech and innovation ecosystem has had a monumental year so far in 2021, breaking funding records and yielding 10 new unicorns – private companies valued at $1 billion or more — just in the first three months of the year, more than any country in Europe. Israeli high-tech activity on public markets also increased significantly this year, a trend reflected in the number of IPOs, SPAC (special-purpose acquisition company) transactions, and follow-on offerings.

“Year in and year out, Tel Aviv’s startup community has proven that it can achieve more than whole countries within its 52km2, thanks to investment in world-class research facilities, robust government support, and an ever-reliable influx of investment,” writes WIRED UK Contributor Allyssia Alleyne in a new post this week highlighting 10 “hottest startups from Tel Aviv as part of the UK edition of the American tech publication’s annual round-up (except in 2020) of Europe’s 100 hottest startups. They include startups and companies from London, Amsterdam, Stockholm, Barcelona, Dublin, Helsinki, Berlin, Paris, and Lisbon.

These 100 companies “are a cohort like no other,” says Greg Williams, the deputy global editorial director of WIRED. “They survived an unprecedented year, embodying what entrepreneurial spirit is all about.”

The companies, featured in the September/October issue on newsstands this month, are not necessarily “the largest, best-known or most-funded,” but they “are generating buzz” and they are organizations “people are talking about and inspired by,” added Williams.

The Tel Aviv entry is a mix of established companies with prominent backers, high-flying unicorns, and determined startups. Many operate in the deep tech sector.
First Druze Colonel in Israeli Air Force Takes Command of Maintenance Unit
The Israeli Air Force held a historic changing-of-the-guard ceremony on Wednesday at Tel Nof Airbase, south of Tel Aviv, when the first Druze colonel took command of Air Maintenance Unit 22.

Col. Awad Suleiman replaced Col. Roman Kupershmidt, with the latter officer charged with the IAF’s Fixed Wings Group.

During the ceremony, Brig. Gen. Shimon Tsentsiper, head of the Material Directorate, said “in order to meet its missions, the IAF requires the capabilities of the technical units—the expertise, the professionalism, the ability to conceive and the operational capability, which is first class at the global level.”

He added that Suleiman will “safeguard a high level, which integrates professional abilities, dedication, and extraordinary interpersonal skills. He burst through the glass ceiling and became the first officer from the Druze community to become an air-force colonel, thereby forming an example and an inspiration for so many that I am sure will follow him.”

In December, the IAF promoted Suleiman to the rank of colonel, making him the first Druze to attain such a position.