Sunday, September 26, 2021

From Ian:

Twenty Years After Durban, What We Still Get Wrong About Left-Wing Antisemitism
Like all intellectual monopolies, postcolonialism denies the validity of other explanations and in its certitude becomes an illiberal and dangerous source of extremism and hate. Of course, the ideology contains a modicum of truth — the horrors of colonialism do explain some of today’s global disparities. The proponents of postcolonialism, however, completely paper over the highly successful Asian countries that were once colonies, and what that says about the long-term impact of colonial rule.

In simplistically dividing the world into oppressors and oppressed, postcolonialism holds successful nations morally culpable and struggling nations morally pure. And in insisting on this perverse binary, the ideology enables the expression of the usual resentment and ill-will toward Jews and Israel, both of which have succeeded in their respective environments.

Talking about the antisemitism at Durban without reference to postcolonialist ideology is like talking about the attacks of Sept. 11 without reference to extreme Islamist ideology. We should have grasped it then. “It’s the ideology, stupid.”

Fast-forward 20 years, and we see the same political dynamic not in a remote international conference of NGOs and diplomats, but in myriad mainstream American institutions, including higher education, K-12 schools, corporations, the law, medicine, nonprofits and even scientific research. Woke ideology is postcolonialism applied to the domestic scene in Western countries, dividing people neatly into victimizers and victims. And just like the post-Durban reckoning, those concerned about the resurgence of antisemitism today largely fail to understand and name the animating ideology.

About five years ago, it became apparent that woke ideology and its concomitant antisemitism, once confined to the margins, was gaining ground. Then a CEO of a national Jewish advocacy organization dedicated to engaging progressives, I wrote that “the growing acceptance of intersectionality arguably poses the most significant … challenge of our time [to the Jewish community]. Ultimately, how popular — and threatening — intersectionality becomes depends on the degree to which the far left … is successful in inculcating its black-and-white worldview … with the mainstream left.”

I thought at the time that Jewish organizations could best protect the community by positioning ourselves as members in good standing of the intersectional club. Such progressive certification would, I and others surmised, prevent the lion’s share of the left from fully embracing antisemitic and anti-Israel perspectives. I thought that these forces had a long way to go before gaining mainstream currency. Boy, was I wrong.
20 years since Durban: Most sickening display of Jew-hate since Nazis
In 2011, 14 countries boycotted, and in 2009 there were 10, as opposed to in 2001, when only Israel and the US walked out.

Erdan considered the growing number of countries boycotting Durban, as well as the fact that not one Western country sent a high-level representative to Durban IV or volunteered to lead a roundtable, as a success for Israel “in labeling it antisemitic and anti-Israel.”

Cooper, however, said Israel should have reached out to Abraham Accords countries, as well as states in Africa, South America and elsewhere, “to gently, politely say, look, great things are happening bilaterally,” but they need to speak up against antisemitism as well.

Diker saw these announcements as a “silver lining” in Durban IV, together with an even larger number of countries accepting the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of antisemitism, by which the Durban Declaration arguably and the NGO declaration certainly would be considered antisemitic.

It is up to the countries that adopted IHRA “to enforce that moral mandate and not allow international organizations such as the UN to upend and uproot and dismantle their own founding charter, which calls for righting against racism of any kind,” Diker added.

Bayefsky sees the boycotts by major democratic countries as an important milestone: “All the democratic members of the UN Security Council are with Israel on this. They have said no to Durban. That’s a big deal. They don’t agree on everything... Israel’s other solid friends and allies stood shoulder to shoulder with Israel on this abomination... saying this demonization of Israel is antisemitism. That message is getting through whether the other side likes it or not. They cannot make the case that calling for the dismantlement of the Jewish state is somehow unrelated to antisemitism.”

Bayefsky also said that the Jewish delegates who pushed back against antisemitism in 2001 are still involved today.

“We have been able to get the team back together, with some of us who were there and others of a younger generation who were not there and understand the danger to the State of Israel and the Jewish people and aren’t prepared to let it go,” she stated.

“We have no intention of lying down and letting the so-called human rights world walk all over us.”

Madrid Assembly Officially Adopts IHRA Definition of Antisemitism
The Madrid Assembly, the local parliament of Spain’s main region, adopted on Friday the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA)’s working definition of antisemitism.

In addition, the Assembly demanded that the country’s national parliament adopt legislation precluding any possible grant or public aid to entities that promote antisemitism as defined by the IHRA, according to pro-Israel advocacy organization Action and Communication on the Middle East (ACOM).

This proposal would effectively exclude public financing of any BDS group or activity in Spain, a nation where BDS has gained popularity in recent years.

The law was supported by the Partido Popular, the ruling party in the Madrid region, led by President of Madrid Isabel Díaz Ayuso, “a strong and committed defender of Israel,” according to ACOM, with the support of the the Socialist Party (center-left) and the VOX Party (conservative).

Jewish groups slam resolution put forth at Durban IV
A number of American Jewish organizations slammed a resolution adopted on Wednesday at a high-level meeting at the UN General Assembly that commemorated the 20th anniversary of the Durban Declaration and Program of Action (DDPA) stemming from a notoriously anti-Semitic World Conference Against Racism in Durban, South Africa, in 2001.

"The resolution predictably claimed that the DDPA offered 'a comprehensive United Nations framework and solid foundation for combating racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance,' and reaffirmed commitment to its 'full and effective implementation,' " stated B'nai B'rith International in a news release on Friday.

The original Durban declaration was censured by Jewish groups and nations such as the United States for allowing the presence of overt anti-Semitic and anti-Israel hate, as well as including Palestinians as the only group named as victims of racism.

B'nai B'rith wrote that it has worked over the past few weeks in partnership with the Jewish Broadcasting Service on Durban, anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism. The organization featured luminaries such as Soviet dissident Natan Sharansky, intellectual Bernard-Henri Lévi, former US National Security Advisor John Bolton and others, culminating in an hour-long interview with B'nai B'rith honorary president Richard Heideman, who led the Jewish delegation at the Durban conference and his wife, Phyllis Heideman, president of the International March of the Living.

In the past year, B'nai B'rith also lobbied other nations to join the United States and Israel in boycotting the anniversary conference, also known as Durban IV, leading to a total of 35 countries that declined to participate in the commemoration.

"This public disassociation by a substantial moral minority at the UN represents a meaningful victory against efforts to hijack the world body and the critical fight against racism – specifically, racism against people of African descent – for the purposes of delegitimizing Israel by obscenely equating only it and Jews' national liberation movement, Zionism, with racism," B'nai B'rith wrote in the statement.

Iraq orders arrests of ministry official and tribal leader who urged Israel ties
Iraqi authorities announced on Sunday that they had issued warrants for the arrest of two Iraqis who addressed a conference calling for their country to make peace with Israel. The authorities said they would arrest all 300-plus participants once they have established who they are.

The over 300 Iraqis gathered on Friday in Erbil, in Iraq’s Kurdistan region, to issue statements backing normalization with Israel. The conference was organized by the Center for Peace Communications, a New York-based group that advocates closer ties between Israel and the Arab world.

“Israel today, as you know, is a strong country and an inseparable part of the world and the United Nations. Iraq cannot neglect this fact and live in isolation from the world,” Sahar al-Ta’i, a senior official in Iraq’s Culture Ministry, told the attendees.

“This is the manner in which the United Arab Emirates looked toward future generations and the greater good, and entered into the Abraham Accords,” al-Ta’i said, referring to the recent normalization deals between Israel and four Arab states, including the Emirates.

On Sunday, a Baghdad court issued a warrant for al-Ta’i’s arrest, as well as for the detention of tribal leader Wisam al-Hardan. The latter, who also participated in the peace conference, called for reconciliation with Israel in a Wall Street Journal op-ed published on Friday.

When you vote to let terrorists kill Jews, that is antisemitism
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has long tolerated growing antisemitism in her party’s ranks, and this week that problem has reared its ugly head when some progressives forced her to remove $1 billion in funding for Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system from an emergency spending bill to keep the federal government open.

After the Iron Dome funding was removed, Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) tweeted, “Here’s an idea: don’t sell arms to anyone who violates human rights.” But as Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-Mich.), a member of the House Armed Services Committee, pointed out in a Twitter thread that the “Iron Dome is a purely *defensive* system” that “protects civilians when hundreds of rockets are shot at population centers.” It was co-developed by the United States and Israel, she continued, and is “used to protect our bases abroad, in addition to Israeli civilians in their homes.” For progressives to use “a system that just saved hundreds, if not thousands, of lives as a political chit is problematic.”

That is the understatement of the year. Omar and her fellow progressives didn’t use Iron Dome funding as a “chit” to get something else they wanted. Their only demand was that the funding be removed from the bill — full stop — and they were willing to shut down the government to make it happen. The fact that they succeeded is an absolute disgrace.

In May, militant groups Hamas and Islamic Jihad fired 4,369 rockets at Israel from the Gaza strip, intending to indiscriminately kill Jews. Almost two-thirds missed their targets, but more than 1,500 rockets were still headed to residential neighborhoods where innocent men, women and children lived. Fortunately, the Iron Dome stopped more than 90 percent of the 1,500 missiles, saving countless innocent lives.

Imagine the carnage that would have ensued if those rockets had not been shot down. If you oppose funding for the Iron Dome, it means you want to deny Israel the ability to stop those rocket attacks. It means you want Hamas to retain the capability to kill Israeli civilians in their homes. And it exposes the lie that these progressive representatives are not antisemities. When you vote to let terrorists kill Jews, that is antisemitism.
The NGO Congressional Campaign Against Funding for Israel’s Iron Dome
For years, pro-BDS NGOs, some with links to terror groups, have lobbied Congress against American security assistance to Israel, including Iron Dome and other defensive systems. Although their efforts have failed to impact policy, the NGOs have gained support from high-profile progressive Representatives and garnered media attention for the anti-Israel agenda.

In the specific campaign against the Iron Dome funding, as reflected in the quotes below, NGOs and NGO officials falsely portrayed this as an offensive weapons system, mixed with accusations of “apartheid” and implying that it would be better if Hamas missiles and rockets could more easily reach Israeli civilians targets.

Earlier in 2021, Defence for Children International-Palestine (DCI-P) , Human Rights Watch (HRW), and others partnered with Betty McCollum (D-MN) on a draft bill targeting Israeli companies and defense forces. Additionally, during the May Gaza conflict, the NGO network intensified its attacks, demanding that the United States impose an arms embargo on Israel and halt military assistance. In June 2021, 100 organizations – including PFLP-tied NGOs Addameer, Al-Dameer, Al-Haq, Al-Mezan, Defense for Children International – Palestine, as well as US-BDS NGOs Adalah Justice Project, American Friends Service Committee, American Muslims for Palestine, Center for Constitutional Rights, IfNotNow, Jewish Voice for Peace, Palestine Legal, and Samidoun – publicized their letter to President Biden to “Halt Weapons Sales to Israel.” The attack against Iron Dome funding is a continuation of these campaigns.

Two IDF Soldiers Wounded in West Bank Firefight That Killed Four Palestinian Terrorists
Israeli security forces exchanged gunfire with Palestinians early Sunday morning in separate incidents in the West Bank during Israel Defense Forces (IDF) arrest operations.

Two IDF soldiers were seriously wounded in an exchange of gunfire with terrorists in the village of Burqin near Jenin, an IDF spokesman confirmed.

The wounded officer and combatant were evacuated to a hospital for medical treatment.

At least four Palestinian terrorists — members of Hamas and Islamic Jihad in the West Bank — were killed during the armed clashes.

The Palestinian Health Ministry confirmed the four deaths during the firefight with the Israeli army.

Three terrorists were killed in Beit ‘Anan in north Jerusalem — Ahmad Zahar and two other terrorists whose identities are not yet known.

Another terrorist — Osama Suba — was killed in Burqin in the Jenin district when Palestinians opened fire on IDF soldiers.

Israeli security forces surrounded a house in Burqin during the arrest operations.

The IDF said that the clashes occurred during raids to arrest Hamas terrorists planning to carry out attacks.

Several Palestinians were reportedly wounded in the clashes.

Arrests were also reported in the town of Beit Fajjar, south of Bethlehem, and in Hebron.
Despite deadly raid, additional Hamas cell members likely still on the run
Additional members of a Hamas cell planning imminent terrorist attacks in Israel are likely still on the loose, the military believes, despite a deadly raid overnight that killed five Palestinians and injured two IDF troops.

Sources said that the large and heavily armed Hamas cell that was targeted during the arrests planned to carry out attacks in the West Bank and inside Israel.

While security forces have arrested some 20 militants belonging to the cell and confiscated five guns, there are additional suspects who belong to the same cell who have not yet been arrested.

Though the IDF believes the raids struck a significant blow to the cell’s plans, it is still not sure if the threat posed by the cell has passed.

Following the raids, IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Aviv Kohavi visited the Menashe Regional Brigade and held a situational assessment along with head of the Central Command Maj.-Gen. Yehuda Fuchs, Commander of the Judea and Samaria Division Brig.-Gen. Yaniv Alaluf, Commander of the Menashe Brigade Col. Arik Moyal, and other senior officers.

Kohavi called the arrests a “significant achievement” that prevented “significant terror attacks” that could have taken place in Jerusalem, Netanya, Tel Aviv, Afula and elsewhere in the country were thwarted because of the “extraordinary cooperation” of all security forces.

PMW: Palestinian kids taught to admire escaped terrorists
The escape of 6 Palestinian terrorists from an Israeli prison earlier this month was cause for great celebration in the PA, and the PA utilized the escape to reinforce what Palestinian children are taught daily: That terrorists and murderers of Israelis are heroes. The following images and texts published by PA schools, Abbas’ Fatah Movement, and the official PA daily, show that Palestinian school kids are being taught to honor all terrorists, with focus on the escapees (who were all recaptured within 2 weeks):

One example illustrates how central the message that terrorists are heroes is and how important it is for the PA and Fatah to get it across to children. Fatah posted the answers given by a 4th grader who chose to write sentences about the 6 escaped terrorists for an assignment on interrogatives. Fatah said the boy had “understood the lesson of the prisoners well”:
Posted text: “It is enough that our children have already understood the lesson of the prisoners well
This is how a child in fourth grade answered a question in an Arabic lesson”
The image shows the boy’s hand-written answers to an assignment.
Text: “We will write five sentences that begin with the following question words:
Schoolbook: Who: Who are the prisoners who escaped from prison? (refers to six terrorist prisoners who escaped from Gilboa Prison; see note below -Ed.)
Schoolbook: How:
Student: How did the prisoners escape from the prison? (With a spoon)
Schoolbook: What:
Student: What happened to the prisoners? (Four were caught)
Schoolbook: Did:
Student: Did they catch the prisoners?
Schoolbook: Where:
Student: Where did the two prisoners go?”
[Facebook page of the Fatah Movement – Nablus Branch, Sept. 16, 2021]

Children were also taught to praise the escaped terrorists as “lofty lions” who “let the enemy taste from the bitter cup” as is seen in pictures of young girls from the Nusayba Al-Mazeniya Elementary School for Girls:
PA PM Shtayyeh repeats Abbas’ vow that last penny will be paid to terrorist prisoners

PLO official in UK complains Facebook blocks posts praising arch-terrorists

PA orders crackdown on criminals, illegal weapons in Hebron
The Palestinian Authority has instructed its security forces to take all measures to halt increased lawlessness and anarchy in Hebron and its surroundings, a senior PA official said on Sunday.

“The instructions from the Palestinian leadership are clear and firm,” the official told The Jerusalem Post. “There will be zero tolerance for anyone who breaks the law and intimidates the residents.”

The instructions came in response to accusations by many residents, including senior Fatah officials and heads of local clans, that the PA was not doing anything to stop the recent wave of violent crime in the Hebron area.

Last week, Emad Khurwat, a senior Fatah official in Hebron, accused the PA of “conspiring” against the city. He also threatened to prevent Palestinian officials from entering Hebron and said that Fatah gunmen were ready to replace the PA security forces in enforcing law and order. Khurwat and other residents claimed that the city was now controlled by large clans that have dozens of gunmen who often intimidate and extort residents.

Khurwat’s unprecedented and public threat is seen by local residents as a direct challenge to the PA leadership. It also reflects increased tensions between local Fatah activists and the leadership of the faction, which is headed by PA President Mahmoud Abbas.
Turkey to buy another Russian S-400 defense system - report
President Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey still intended to buy a second batch of S-400 missile defense systems from Russia, a move that could deepen a rift with NATO ally Washington and trigger fresh US sanctions.

Washington says the S-400s pose a threat to its F-35 fighter jets and to NATO's broader defense systems. Turkey says it was unable to procure air defense systems from any NATO ally on satisfactory terms.

"In the future, nobody will be able to interfere in terms of what kind of defense systems we acquire, from which country at what level," Erdogan said in an interview aired on Face the Nation with Margaret Brennan at CBS News on Sunday. "Nobody can interfere with that. We are the only ones to make such decisions."

The United States imposed sanctions on Turkey's Defence Industry Directorate, its chief Ismail Demir and three other employees in December following the country's acquisition of a first batch of S-400s.
Amb. Dore Gold: The Iranian Nuclear Threat Is Not Years Away – It Is Now
Because uranium enrichment is the most difficult step for states with nuclear ambitions to take, Tehran’s massive investment in enrichment is the most important indicator of Iranian determination to go the whole way to become a nuclear weapons state. Finally, when the enrichment process begins, the uranium that is injected into centrifuges is in a gaseous form. To build a nuclear warhead, the uranium has to be in the form of metal. In August 2021, the IAEA verified that Iran was producing uranium metal. It now seemed that Iran was preparing to make the final push to an atomic weapon, but that would not take years or months but rather, far less.

It would be a mistake to conclude that Israel has a great deal of time because the Iranians work sequentially, completing one component of their program before moving on to the next. The authoritative Institute for Science and International Security has made clear that the Iranians worked under the assumption that their work on the components would not be sequential and not be separated but rather had to be conducted “in unison.”

In Israel there has been a tendency for political leaders to blame each other for the situation that has emerged. There is only one party that is to blame and that is the Iranian leadership. Right after the first nuclear agreements were reached between Iran and the European Union’s EU-3 in 2005, Tehran was burying the evidence of its nuclear work at various facilities that were supposed to be inspected. This has been the pattern ever since. Unfortunately, the Western powers have been torn between their own naivete and their desire to protect their commerce with Iran. The inaction that resulted is what allowed the Iranian nuclear program to continue to expand.
Iran Switching to a New Illusion
The "American illusion" of Rafsanjani, Khatami and Rouhani did great damage to Iran, principally by fostering the belief that the solution to Iran's problems could only be found outside Iran. That illusion is now being replaced by the "Russian illusion" which is based on the same analysis.

However, neither America nor Russia nor China or any other power would be prepared to fully endorse a regime that tries to live in a fantasy world in which Khomeinism conquers the Middle East, wipes Israel off the map and leads in the creation of a "World Without America." US Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama went out of their way to help the Khomeinist regime consolidate itself but were ultimately not prepared to endorse its fantasies.

Presidents Putin and Xi treat Iran with even greater brutality by keeping it on a life-support machine and milking it as much as possible, but never accepting it as an equal strategic partner.

The Rafsanjani-Khatami-Rouhani trio took 24 years to understand that. Raisi now has four years to do so.
Taliban Hang Up Bodies of Alleged Kidnappers in Afghan City
Taliban authorities in the western Afghan city of Herat killed four alleged kidnappers and hung their bodies up in public to deter others, a local government official said on Saturday.

Sher Ahmad Ammar, deputy governor of Herat, said the men had kidnapped a local businessman and his son and intended to take them out of the city when they were seen by patrols that had set up checkpoints around the city.

An exchange of gunfire ensued in which all four were killed, while one Taliban was wounded.

“Their bodies were brought to the main square and hung up in the city as a lesson for other kidnappers,” he said.

The two kidnapping victims were released unharmed, he said.

Herat resident Mohammad Nazir said he had been shopping for food near the city’s Mostofiat Square when he heard a loudspeaker announcement calling for people’s attention.

“When I stepped forward, I saw they had brought a body in a pickup truck, then they hung it up on a crane,” he said.

Footage of the bloodstained corpse, swinging on the crane was widely shared on social media, showing a note pinned to the man’s chest saying “This is the punishment for kidnapping.”
UN Watch: U.N. weighing Taliban request to fill Afghan seat on U.N. Women's Rights Commission
Hillel Neuer on Sky News Australia with Sharri Markson, September 26, 2021.

Sacked Eton teacher Will Knowland in fresh controversy for ‘Jewish conspiracy’ YouTube interview
A teacher sacked by Eton College for a lecture criticised as sexist has again courted controversy by posting an interview with an American writer accused of anti-Semitism.

Will Knowland was dismissed by Eton after he refused to take down a lecture posted on YouTube called ‘The Patriarchy Paradox’.

In the video, he suggested that “patriarchy is, rather than being merely socially constructed, partly based in biology”, and that it benefits women.

He also said that “biologically speaking, the idea that men exert power over women is nonsense” and that women “exploit their power of sexual choice to get males to compete to do things for them”. Mr Knowland accused the school of suppressing his freedom of speech.

Earlier this month, he hosted an interview on his YouTube channel with the controversial Catholic writer E Michael Jones. In the interview, Mr Jones says that “the Jews were always behind pornography”, claiming they used porn “as a form of control” and “crushed” opposition to it.

A series of other claims against Jews were also made, and he labelled homosexuals “notorious narcissists”.

Mr Knowland does not challenge Mr Jones’ claims during the interview.

Thanks to an ISRAEL21c article, Israeli avocado plants are growing in India
In January 2017, undergraduate business student Harshit Godha wrote to ISRAEL21c explaining that our article, “Europe to Israel: More avocado, please!” inspired his dream of establishing one of India’s first commercial avocado orchards.

Wanting to learn from Israeli experts how to do this in his hometown of Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, whose climate is similar to Israel’s, Godha contacted Benny Wisse at Kibbutz Ma’agan on the southern shore of the Sea of Galilee.

“I emailed Benny if he could teach me about avocado farming. He was kind enough to invite me to visit his farm in Kibbutz Ma’agan and learn from him. I was thrilled and excited,” says Godha, now 26.

“I saw Benny for the first time at the Ben-Gurion Airport when I arrived in Israel. I don’t know why, but I had a gut feeling that it would work out just fine. Had I told my family that I never even had a face-to-face video call with Benny before going to Israel, they would have never approved.”

Wisse took Godha to the fields and taught him about different avocado varieties. He introduced him to industry experts including Oren Wallach of Oren Nursery.

“I was aware that Israel was a technologically advanced country especially in the field of agriculture. Israelis question traditional knowledge and innovate without compromising quality,” Godha tells ISRAEL21c.

“Greenhouse technology, drip irrigation, high-density orchards and optimal pruning techniques all came from Israel. Witnessing it firsthand changed my views about agriculture,” he says.

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