Saturday, October 23, 2021

From Ian:

What We Lose When We Lose Thomas Jefferson
The reduction of American history to an unbroken story of racial oppression comes at particular cost to Jews. Because we have been among the greatest beneficiaries of liberal institutions, we are unavoidably targets when those institutions abandon or reject their liberal mission. A widely despised and persecuted people who thrived in America like nowhere else, Jews do not fit into the sharp distinction between oppressor and oppressed that characterized ideological “antiracism.” Therefore, Jewish experiences must either be ignored or reduced to a monolithic conception of white supremacy.

It’s no coincidence that former Council member (now Assemblyman) Charles Barron, who began the campaign to remove the Jefferson statue twenty years ago, is among the most antisemitic figures in city politics. An ally of the New Black Panther Party, Barron has asserted that the “real” Semites are black and accused Israel of “genocide.” Even if he’s not targeting Levy specifically, Barron is an undisguised enemy of the pluralistic patriotism that Jefferson articulated and Levy did so much to promote. Barron doesn’t want the statue moved, “contextualized” or supplemented by other likenesses. He wants it destroyed.

The question for Assemblyman Barron and everyone else who made removal of the statue their cause celèbre is: By destroying the statue, do you mean to attack the man or the symbol? Do you mean to attack his slave-holding, or his striving for a free and democratic republic? Sometimes, it’s hard to be sure.

Jefferson’s far from the first statue to fall, and it won’t be the last. But the plaster and bronze of which they’re composed isn’t the most important thing. What matters is the fate of the ideas in that Declaration in Jefferson’s hand. The ones that Lincoln described as “an abstract truth, applicable to all men and all times,” and “a rebuke and a stumbling-block to the very harbingers of re-appearing tyranny and oppression.” That’s what Uriah Levy saw in Jefferson and what we should continue to honor today.
Israel disputes US claim it wasn’t told of plan to outlaw rights groups
An Israeli defense official on Saturday disputed American claims that the United States was not informed of a highly contentious decision by Jerusalem to label six Palestinian rights organizations as terror groups, insisting Washington had been told in advance.

“Officials in the American administration were updated in advance of the intention to make this declaration and they received intelligence information about the matter,” the defense official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

On Friday afternoon, Defense Minister Benny Gantz announced that half a dozen Palestinian civil society groups — including highly prominent ones with significant backing and oversight from the European Union and other international bodies — were being designated as terror organizations, asserting that they worked on behalf of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) terror group.

This list included: Union of Palestinian Women’s Committees; ADDAMEER — Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association; Bisan Center for Research and Development; al-Haq Organization; Defense for Children International — Palestine (DCI-P); and the Union Of Agricultural Work Committees.

“Those organizations were active under the cover of civil society organizations, but in practice belong and constitute an arm of the [PFLP] leadership, the main activity of which is the liberation of Palestine and destruction of Israel,” Gantz’s office said in a statement. According to the Defense Ministry, all six organizations employed senior PFLP members, “including activists involved in terror activity.”

Representatives of the groups and international organizations denied the charges and accused Israel of trying to silence criticism of alleged human rights abuses, with one of the organizations, al-Haq, calling the move “a sinister, unprecedented, and blanket attack on Palestinian human rights defenders and civil society organizations.”




JPost Editorial: Israel must prove blacklisted NGOs funded terrorism - editorial
It is also reminiscent of the trial of Muhammad el-Halabi, a former head of the World Vision NGO who was arrested in 2016 for allegedly assisting Hamas.

Israel said he diverted millions of dollars contributed by the Australian government that were earmarked for humanitarian aid to Hamas. World Vision suspended its operations in Gaza and hired investigators to check the Israeli claims. Australia did the same. After exhaustive research, they both came up with no evidence to back the Israeli claims.

Halabi’s trial has dragged on for years. Something so simple - the Israeli claims that he funneled money to Hamas - should have been easy to prove in court. Why is the trial not over remains a mystery and as Yonah Bob recently wrote in the Post, the case is showing indications of not being a fair trial.

As Bob pointed out, Halabi has been in jail for more than five years and has endured 165 court sessions without any credible evidence brought against him. He has been denied bail and his trial has been declared secret without any credible reason except possibly to hide the fact that the prosecutor is afraid of being exposed for unjustly keeping an innocent man in jail for such a long time.

And this is exactly the problem with Gantz’s announcement on Friday about the NGOs designated as terrorist groups. It is easy to make announcements and declare that an NGO is part of a terrorist enterprise. It is harder to prove that.

This is not to say that these NGOs or Halabi are innocent. It is a call on Israeli authorities to back up what they claim with real evidence. Otherwise, they should not be surprised when the world asks questions.


Palestinians fume over labelling of NGOs as terrorist organizations
The Palestinian Independent Commission for Human Rights denounced the decision, saying it was “a continuation of the aggression practiced by the occupation against our people and their national and civil institutions that operate according to Palestinian law, and part of its targeting of the Palestinian narrative because of the important role of Palestinian civil work in pursuing the crimes of the occupation.”

The decision to classify the six NGOs as terrorist organizations is “a continuation of the systematic policy of the Israeli occupation authorities in targeting Palestinian civil society institutions in violation of the rules of international laws, and are crimes that require the prosecution and trial of those involved,” the commission argued.

Al-Haq, one of the six groups declared a terrorist organization, rejected the designation.

“The baseless allegations represent an alarming and unjust escalation of attacks against the Palestinian people in their struggle for freedom, justice and the right to self-determination,” Al-Haq said in a statement. “Israel’s widespread and systematic smearing of Palestinian human rights NGOs and human rights defenders aims to delegitimize, oppress, silence and drain their work and resources.”

Al-Haq claimed that the Israeli decision came in the immediate aftermath of the opening of an International Criminal Court investigation into Israeli “crimes.”

Al-Haq General Director Shawan Jabarin said that the allegations against his group were the “result of the Israeli failure to challenge the work of the organization on the basis of law or evidence.”

Hamas also condemned the Israeli decision, dubbing it “one of the forms of war waged against the Palestinians and a terrorist act.”

Hazem Qassem, a spokesperson for Hamas in the Gaza Strip, said that the decision aims to “weaken the Palestinians and deprive them of the services provided by these organizations.”

“We call for launching a national campaign to confront the decisions of the occupation against our national civil institutions,” he said. “We call on the international community not to deal with the false Zionist narrative and expose the Zionist terrorism that stands behind such decisions.”


Stung by Criticism, National Sunrise Movement Distances Itself From DC Chapter’s Boycott of US Jewish Groups
The national office of progressive environmentalist advocacy group The Sunrise Movement hastily moved to distance itself from its Washington, DC chapter on Friday following an outcry over its withdrawal from a rally featuring Jewish groups.

“To be clear, Sunrise DC’s statement and actions are not in line with our values,” the national Sunrise Movement declared on its Twitter feed, after attracting heavy criticism for an earlier statement that refrained from any condemnation of its DC chapter. “Singling out Jewish organizations for removal from a coalition, despite others holding similar views, is antisemitic and unacceptable.”

On Thursday, Sunrise Movement DC said it pulled out of the upcoming Freedom to Vote Relay-Rally at the Finish Line, which advocates for the protection of voting rights, “due to the participation of a number of Zionist organizations.”

The groups in question are the Jewish Council on Public Affairs, National Council of Jewish Women, and Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism.

Sunrise DC said they “oppose Zionism and any state that enforces its ideology,” and that Israel is a “colonial project” that “routinely displaces Palestinians.”

Following a storm of criticism from Jewish organizations who charged that Sunrise DC’s stance was antisemitic, the national organization issued a statement explaining that it was a “decentralized, grassroots movement.”

“Sunrise DC made a decision to issue this statement, and we weren’t given the chance to look at it before it became public,” the national office claimed.

The statement went on to confirm that “we reject all forms of discrimination, including antisemitism and anti-Palestinian racism.” It ended by asserting, “As a national movement that supports freedom and dignity for all people, we will always welcome anyone who acts on our principles and chooses to join the fight for collective liberation. We believe that the rights of Palestinians are a part of that struggle and are committed to embracing that struggle together.”


Anti-Israel Polemicist to Give Wiesel Memorial Lecture at Boston University
Rev. Dr. William Barber II, the former president of the North Carolina Chapter of the NAACP who regularly refers to Jesus as “a brown-skinned Palestinian Jew” and who in 2018 falsely accused Israel of “targeting” Palestinian children “simply because they want freedom,” is scheduled to give the Elie Wiesel Memorial Lecture at Boston University’s Elie Wiesel Center for Jewish Studies on Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2021.

At the title indicates, the lecture is given in honor of Elie Wiesel, a Nobel Prize-winning writer and Auschwitz survivor who documented the role Christian antisemitism played in facilitating the murder of six million Jews during the Holocaust.

In addition to falsely portraying Jesus as a Palestinian and accusing Israel of targeting Palestinian children, Barber has falsely characterized the Palestinian movement as nonviolent.

Speaking at conference organized by the US Campaign for Palestinian Rights in 2018, Barber declared that the “Palestinians have a long history of nonviolence from the general strikes of 1936 to the nonviolent mobilizations to the First Intifada to the nonviolent protest against the wall still underway at villages across the occupied West Bank to this year’s extraordinary Gaza protests in which tens of thousand Gazans young and old, men and women have stood unarmed only to be shot down by Israeli snipers.”

Asserting that the Palestinians “have a long history of nonviolence” makes sense only if one ignores numerous and persistent acts of violence against Jews in pre-state Palestine, bloody attacks on Jews during the fighting in 1947, the 1948 war, the suicide bombings and other attacks that marked the first and second intifadas, the thousands of rockets launched by Hamas, and the stabbing intifada that took place in the last decade.
Shatter writes letter of complaint to Dáil over parliamentary question about Israel
Former minister for justice Alan Shatter has written a letter of complaint to the clerk of the Dáil following a parliamentary question asked by Leas Cheann Comhairle Catherine Connolly about Israel and Palestine.

The Galway West TD wrote to Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney on October 5th asking “if his department by indicating support for the Jewish character of the Israeli state agrees with the treatment by Israel of Palestinian communities in its attempts to accomplish Jewish supremacy; his views on whether these attempts to perpetuate the supremacy of Jews over Palestinians amount to apartheid; and if he will make a statement on the matter”.

In response to the question, Mr Shatter has written to the clerk of the Dáil, Peter Finnegan, seeking an apology and also an examination of the issue by the Dáil’s Oversight Committee.

Mr Shatter said the content of the question was “deeply offensive”, and “caused both me and other members of Ireland’s Jewish community distress and considerable unease”.

He also said the “seriousness of the matter is compounded by the question’s author being the Leas Cheann Comhairle”.

“This is a dangerous and slippery slope, and I am asking specifically that the conduct, question and appropriateness of the language used by the Deputy be addressed by the committee, and that consideration be given as to whether her retaining her position as Leas Cheann Comhairle damages the Dáil’s credibility and reputation.”
Turkey’s Erdogan orders 10 ambassadors expelled for seeking activist’s release
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday told his foreign minister to expel the ambassadors of 10 countries, including Germany and the United States, who appealed for the release of a jailed civil society leader.

“I have ordered our foreign minister to declare these 10 ambassadors as persona non grata as soon as possible,” he said, referring to a term used in diplomacy which signifies the first step before expulsion.

He did not set a firm date.

“They must know and understand Turkey,” he added, accusing the envoys of “indecency.”

“They must leave here the day they no longer know Turkey,” he said of the ambassadors.

The envoys issued a highly unusual joint statement on Monday saying the continued detention of Parisian-born philanthropist and activist Osman Kavala “cast a shadow” over Turkey.

The US, Germany, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway and Sweden called for a “just and speedy resolution to [Kavala’s] case.”


IDF, police foil gun, drug smuggling operation; Hezbollah involvement suspected
Israeli security forces on Saturday said they thwarted an operation to smuggle drugs and weapons from Lebanon, potentially on behalf of the Hezbollah terrorist organization.

Israel Police and Israel Defense Forces said two pistols and 21 packages containing around 9 kg of hashish with a value of around NIS 350,000 (approximately $109,000) were seized in the operation.

The IDF said that suspects were observed close to the northern border town of Metula, at which point troops were dispatched to the scene where they seized the contraband.

Police said they opened an investigation into the incident. There were no reports of arrests.

“The possibility that the [smuggling] attempt was made with the help of the terrorist organization Hezbollah is being examined,” the IDF said in a statement.

Hezbollah has long maintained control over the area adjacent to the border with Israel and is unlikely to be unaware of smuggling operations.

The terror group is known to fund its activities through drug sales around the world, including producing large amounts of hashish in eastern Lebanon.
IDF nabs Palestinian suspected of daubing swastikas on West Bank road barriers
The Israeli army said Friday that it had arrested a Palestinian man suspected of spray-painting swastikas along a road used by settlers in the northern West Bank.

The graffiti was spotted near the Palestinian village of Hawara early Friday morning on large concrete blocks that the military often uses as road barriers. They are located on a road utilized daily by settlers living in Israeli communities deep in the northern West Bank.

The suspect was transferred to Israel Police. A law enforcement spokesman did not respond to a request for comment on whether he had been charged.

Students from a yeshiva in the nearby Yitzhar settlement spent several hours paining over each of the swastikas.

In recent months, the Nazi symbol has become a feature in several protests by Palestinians in the West Bank against Israeli settlements and illegal outposts, drawing criticism from Knesset lawmakers.

Last month, Palestinian protesters hung a Nazi flag bearing the swastika symbol in the West Bank village of Beit Ummar near Hebron.


Israel says Russia agreed to not hamper IDF air campaign over Syria
Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and Russian President Vladimir Putin agreed during their meeting in Sochi on Friday that the two nations would continue to implement the so-called deconfliction mechanism that works to prevent Israeli and Russian forces from clashing in Syria, a senior Israeli official said.

Housing Minister Ze’ev Elkin, who accompanied Bennett to act as a translator and advisor, said talks revolved around the theme of maintaining continuity in the countries’ relationship after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was replaced by Bennett earlier this year.

According to Elkin, that included making sure the countries continued to work at avoiding conflict over Syria, where Russia is a main player backing the Syrian government and where Israel has waged a years-long campaign of airstrikes aimed at pro-Iranian fighters there.

There were “very wide” talks regarding the situation in Syria aimed at “safeguarding the coordination mechanism,” Elkin said.

“The prime minister presented his world view on ways to stop Iran’s nuclear drive and Iran’s entrenchment in Syria,” he said in a statement. “It was decided to keep policies vis-à-vis Russia in place (regarding airstrikes in Syrian territory.)”

“Russia is a very important player in our region, a kind of neighbor for us in the north,” Bennett said after the leaders met at the Black Sea resort town for their first face-to-face talks since Bennett took office earlier this year, referring to Russia’s large military presence in Syria.

“As such, our relationship with Russia is strategic, but also on an almost daily basis, and we need to maintain this direct and intimate discourse,” Bennett wrote in a Facebook post.
Russia said to be disbanding its Syrian militia, opening up Golan for Iran
Russia is attempting to disband a militia it formed, funded, and armed in southern Syria near the border with Israel over the past few years, a part of an ongoing reconciliation process in the province of Daraa.

The Russian military police demanded earlier this month that groups affiliated with the Eighth Brigade hand over their weapons to the command of the brigade, the London-based Al-Quds al-Arabi reported.

The leader of the group, which comprises mainly former opposition fighters, agreed two years ago to join the Syrian army with his 10,000-strong paramilitary.

But soldiers of the 8th brigade of the 5th corps of the Syrian Arab Army are not paid by Damascus, but rather by the Russians.

Reports have indicated they were not particularly loyal to the regime and and to its Iranian partners, and that Damascus and Tehran have long been unhappy with them.

Since last month, when a Russian-brokered ceasefire came into force in the Daraa province, reconciliation efforts have been ongoing to allow rebels who refuse to disarm to be evacuated, according to reports.
Syria: al-Qaeda Leader Killed in US Drone Strike, Pentagon Reports
A senior al-Qaeda leader was killed in a US drone strike in Syria, the Pentagon announced on Friday.

“A US airstrike today in northwest Syria killed senior al-Qaeda leader Abdul Hamid al-Matar,” said Central Command spokesman Army Major John Rigsbee in a statement.

There are no other known casualties from the strike, he said, adding it was conducted using an MQ-9 aircraft.

“The removal of this al-Qaeda senior leader will disrupt the terrorist organization’s ability to further plot and carry out global attacks,” the army major said.

At the end of September, the Pentagon killed Salim Abu-Ahmad, another senior al-Qaeda commander in Syria, in an airstrike near Idlib in the country’s northwest.

He was responsible for “planning, funding, and approving trans-regional al-Qaeda attacks,” according to the United States Central Command.

“Al-Qaeda continues to present a threat to America and our allies. Al-Qaeda uses Syria as a safe haven to rebuild, coordinate with external affiliates, and plan external operations,” Rigsbee said.

The strike comes two days after a base in southern Syria, used by the US-led coalition fighting the Islamic State group, was struck by unidentified drones.
Ralph Bunche wouldn't have approved of anti-Israel vandalism at UCLA - opinion
This month, vandals scrawled “Free Palestine from the river to the sea” on the wall of a classroom in UCLA’s Bunche Hall. The phrase has been used by groups such as Hamas to call for Israel’s elimination. It is not clear who did the tagging, and the university quickly erased the graffiti. But it is clear what the building’s namesake, Ralph J. Bunche, the first black person to win the Nobel Peace Prize, would have thought of the message.

While Bunche is a forgotten figure to many today – even on UCLA’s campus, where the Center for African American Studies is also named for him – he was integral to the birth of Israel and supported the creation of a Jewish state in 1948. Yet he never lost sight of the plight of the Palestinian people or of the interests of the Arab states in the region. Indeed, Bunche was attacked in the late 1940s by one of his childhood heroes, the famed NAACP leader and scholar W.E.B. DuBois, for being insufficiently supportive of Israel and too focused on Arab demands.

Most importantly, Bunche believed in political compromise and the importance of viewing all people as worthy of dignity and respect. In a time when polarization and contention are reaching new heights in the United States and abroad, and the notion of middle ground seems suspect to many, Bunche stands out in his forthright belief in the power of mediation and mutual respect.

An Angeleno, Ralph Bunche received his Nobel Peace Prize in 1950 for his critical role as mediator between the young Israeli state on one side, and Egypt, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon on the other. An official of the then-new United Nations, Bunche went on to have a stellar career as a diplomat, nonpareil international troubleshooter and civil rights activist.
Former Miss Iraq Tells Miss Universe Contestants to Stay ‘Confident’ Despite Anti-Israel Harassment, Call for Boycott of Pageant Set for Eilat
Former Miss Iraq Sarah Idan told contestants of the upcoming Miss Universe competition set to take place in December in Eilat, Israel, not to be deterred by harassment they might receive on social media for visiting the Jewish state.

“I’d like to warn the beauty queens to prepare for an army of bots that will probably harass their social media posts while [they’re] in Israel with hashtags ‘end the occupation’ and ‘free Palestine.’ They shouldn’t worry, those aren’t even real people but fake accounts used by a few propagandists to intimidate them,” she told The Algemeiner on Friday. “This is a cheap tactic to try and silence them. Just keep doing what you doing. Stay confidently beautiful.”

Idan’s comments came after the grandson of South Africa’s former president and the late civil rights activist Nelson Mandela called on countries to boycott the 70th Miss Universe pageant because it will be held in Israel.

Nkosi Zwelivelile “Mandla” Mandela began advocating for a boycott of this year’s pageant on Wednesday, days after Lalela Mswane, 24, was crowned Miss South Africa 2021 — setting her on course to represent her country in the competition. In a statement that he shared on Instagram, Mandela accused Israel of a “heinous occupation” and claimed the country “violates the fundamental human rights of the Palestinian people and commits crimes against humanity.”

“Israel is an apartheid state and we will continue to mobilize all freedom loving people of the world to boycott, divest and pass sanctions against the brutal apartheid regime,” the current chief of the Mvezo Traditional Council wrote. “We must persist in isolating apartheid Israel in the same way that we isolated apartheid South Africa.”
For CNN, Dead Jews Don’t Count
Sometimes, all it takes is a catchy phrase to perfectly capture the moral absurdity or obscenity of a moment — and help people understand the danger.

The titles of two recent books — “People Love Dead Jews” by Dara Horn and “Jews Don’t Count” by David Baddiel — seem to fit the bill.

I propose a slight revision of these two sayings. I make this proposal after analyzing a six-part CNN series purportedly covering the history of Jerusalem, entitled “Jerusalem: City of Faith and Fury.”

My new phrase: “CNN loves when dead Jews don’t count.”

The recurring theme of the series broadcast over the summer is that much of Jewish history is simply unimportant and uninteresting, and certainly secondary to that of the Arab population.

Entire swathes of the Jewish population of Jerusalem don’t even exist in CNN’s narrative. Even where the significance and relevance of Jews is undeniable, CNN finds a way to make it about anyone but the Jews. There are dozens of examples.

For the sake of brevity, here are an illustrative few.


Hendel, UN chief agree on cooperation to combat antisemitism online
Sometimes, all it takes is a catchy phrase to perfectly capture the moral absurdity or obscenity of a moment — and help people understand the danger.

The titles of two recent books — “People Love Dead Jews” by Dara Horn and “Jews Don’t Count” by David Baddiel — seem to fit the bill.

I propose a slight revision of these two sayings. I make this proposal after analyzing a six-part CNN series purportedly covering the history of Jerusalem, entitled “Jerusalem: City of Faith and Fury.”

My new phrase: “CNN loves when dead Jews don’t count.”

The recurring theme of the series broadcast over the summer is that much of Jewish history is simply unimportant and uninteresting, and certainly secondary to that of the Arab population.

Entire swathes of the Jewish population of Jerusalem don’t even exist in CNN’s narrative. Even where the significance and relevance of Jews is undeniable, CNN finds a way to make it about anyone but the Jews. There are dozens of examples.

For the sake of brevity, here are an illustrative few.
Detectives investigate Nazi salutes at the Dachau concentration camp
Local police in Bavaria, Germany, say two men allegedly filmed themselves in Dachau giving the Nazi salute in front of Jourhaus, the entrance to the concentration camp. While there were allegedly three visitors with them, it was two who gave the salute.

The alleged perpetrators recorded themselves displaying the offensive sign. a witness also apparently recorded the event. The perpetrators said they were drunk, and they gave the salute "as a joke."

It was announced that the men did not know that raising the Nazi salute is banned in Germany.

The crime is punishable by up to three years in prison.

Each man has been been given a lifetime ban from Dachau, and a police investigation is underway.
“You said you’re an honourable British gentleman. You’re anything but,” judge tells aristocrat Piers Portman before sentencing him to 4 months in prison and ordering him to pay over £20,000 for calling CAA Chief Executive “Jewish scum”
The Hon. Piers Portman, the youngest living son of the 9th Viscount Portman and heir to 110 acres of West End real estate, has today been sentenced to four months in prison and ordered to pay over £20,000 after being found guilty last month of calling Gideon Falter, Campaign Against Antisemitism’s Chief Executive, “Jewish scum” in a confrontation at a courthouse in 2018.

Passing sentence at Southwark Crown Court, His Honour Judge Gregory Perrins said that Mr Portman has “strongly-held antisemitic beliefs”, and that he had “deliberately targeted Mr Falter because of his role in prosecuting Alison Chabloz.” Ms Chabloz is an antisemite who has been repeatedly imprisoned following work by Campaign Against Antisemitism.

In scathing sentencing remarks, HHJ Perrins told Mr Portman: “You said you’re an honourable British gentleman. You’re anything but.”

HHJ Perrins then imprisoned him for four months, with the possibility of release on licence after two months, and ordered him to pay a £10,000 fine, make an additional £10,000 compensatory payment to the victim, Mr Falter, and pay court costs. Mr Falter is donating the entire £10,000 to Campaign Against Antisemitism.

Mr Portman, 50, was prosecuted after approaching Mr Falter, Campaign Against Antisemitism’s Chief Executive, at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on 14th June 2018 following the sentencing of Alison Chabloz, a notorious Holocaust denier and antisemite. Campaign Against Antisemitism had brought a private prosecution against Ms Chabloz which the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) took over, and which ultimately led to a conviction and landmark legal precedent. Mr Falter had testified against Ms Chabloz, who has since been repeatedly sent to prison over her antisemitic statements, including denying the Holocaust and claiming that Holocaust survivors had invented their suffering for financial gain.

Mr Portman followed Mr Falter out of the courtroom and confronted him in the lobby of the court building, where an enraged Mr Portman came close to Mr Falter and said: “I’m Piers Portman. I have written to you before. Come after me, you Jewish scum. Come and persecute me. Come and get me.”


CAA to write to C&T Auctioneers and Valuers over auction glorifying Nazi memorabilia
Kent-based C&T Auctioneers and Valuers Ltd is hosting an auction with an array of Nazi memorabilia, including an assortment of Third Reich daggers and busts and pictures of Hitler and his senior ministers.

The two-day militaria online auction also features plaques and medals, clothing, shoes, goggles, medical pouches, china, posters, toys and books, all from the Nazi era.

We will be writing to C&T Auctioneers and Valuers Ltd regarding the grotesque auction.

Recently, Tennants auctioneers assured us that they will not put Nazi items up for auction again in future, after we contacted the auction house in connection with an auction of Third Reich items.

However, auctions of Third Reich items persist, including those recently hosted by Easy Live Auction.


US-Israel Study of 94,354 Adolescents Shows Vaccines Effective Against Delta Variant, Reduce Contagion by 90%
A grand-scale study that was conducted by scientists from Boston Children’s Hospital, Clalit Research Institute in Tel Aviv, and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in Boston, that matched 94,354 adolescent vaccine recipients with 94,354 unvaccinated control adolescents, showed that the Pfizer–BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine (a.k.a. BNT162b2 mRNA) was highly effective in the first few weeks after vaccination against both documented infection and symptomatic Covid-19 with the delta variant among adolescents between the ages of 12 and 18 years.

The study (Effectiveness of BNT162b2 Vaccine against Delta Variant in Adolescents) was published Wednesday night in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Prof. Ran Balicer, Director of Health Policy Planning and Founding Director of Clalit Health Service’s Research Institute in Tel Aviv, noted that with the outbreak of the fourth wave following the Delta variant of the coronavirus, the question arose as to whether the existing vaccine in Israel also provides adequate protection against infection with this variant. He explained that the results of the study unequivocally show that the vaccine is most effective in reducing Delta variant infection and preventing symptomatic disease one week after receiving two doses.

According to Prof. Balicer, the results of the study show that the strength of protection against the Delta variant is very similar to that observed in young adults against the alpha strain six months ago. He added that these conclusions provide important and well-founded information for parents who are undecided about vaccinating their adolescent children.
Quentin's comedyTarantino planning film in which ‘Mexican saloon girl is Israeli’
After marrying an Israeli, Quentin Tarantino has suggested he could feature one in one of his coming films.

Speaking at the Rome Film Festival this week, the American director said his future plans include a film criticism book and potential television series, “but first I want to make a comedy.”

Tarantino also gave a few details about an unspecified project he was planning.

“It’s not like my next movie. It’s a piece of something else that I’m thinking about doing — and I’m not going to describe what it is,” he told Italy’s state broadcaster, according to Variety. “But part of this thing, there is supposed to be a Spaghetti Western in it.”

Tarantino said the movie was “going to be really fun” and that he looked forward to filming it.

“I want to shoot it in the Spaghetti Western style where everybody’s speaking a different language,” he said.

He added: “The Mexican Bandido is an Italian. The hero is an American. The bad sheriff is a German. The Mexican saloon girl is Israeli. And everybody is speaking a different language.”
Researchers uncover mosaic in what they think is Bethsaida’s Church of Apostles
Archaeologists in northern Israel have uncovered mosaic floors in the ruins of a building they believe is the lost Church of the Apostles, in the biblical village of Bethsaida on the shore of the Sea of Galilee.

Christians believe the legendary basilica was built on the location of the onetime home of Jesus’s apostles Peter and Andrew.

During excavations over this summer by the Kinneret Institute for Galilee Archeology at Kinneret College and Nyack College — led by Prof. Mordechai Aviam and Prof. Steven Notley — the mosaic floor of the supposed church from the Byzantine period was discovered.

Archaeologists had announced the discovery of the purported church building in 2019, and have been working at the site since.

The mosaic bears inscriptions that the researchers say are typical to Byzantine churches, and may prove the site was indeed the Church of the Apostles. One inscription was a dedication to a bishop that described a renovation during his time in office, indicating that it was major enough to warrant fixing up, Aviam told the Haaretz daily.

The researchers said the site can be identified with the church mentioned by an 8th-century Bavarian bishop named Willibald.

Willibald in 724 CE traveled on pilgrimage to holy sites along the northern shore of the Sea of Galilee, and was recorded saying: “And thence they went to Bethsaida, the residence of Peter and Andrew, where there is now a church on the site of their house. They remained there that night, and the next morning went to Chorazin, where our Lord healed the demoniacs, and sent the devil into a herd of swine.”
IDF’s 1st fallen paratrooper to be buried in Israel, 73 years after his death
The body of Martin Davidovich, the man named by the Israel Defense Forces as the nation’s first fallen paratrooper, is set to be brought to Israel next week for burial, 73 years after his death in a training accident in Czechoslovakia.

A delegation from the Defense Ministry and the IDF will travel to Prague on Sunday to retrieve his remains before bringing them back to Israel for internment.

Davidovich was born in 1927 in Częstochowa in Czechoslovakia.

He was active in the Hashomer Hatzair youth movement, until World War II when he was sent to Auschwitz in April 1944 and then to the Mauthausen concentration camp. Many of his family members were killed in the Holocaust.

After the end of the war, Davidovich returned to Czechoslovakia and joined the Czech Brigade, a military unit established with the aim of training future soldiers for the State of Israel.

According to the Chaim Herzog Museum of the Jewish Soldier in World War II, the brigade was founded in July 1948. The Jewish volunteers underwent military training by the Czech army, in coordination with Israeli officials.

“The idea was basically to establish a military force consisting of Jewish volunteers, to be trained in Czechoslovakia, that would emigrate to Israel and help build the IDF and be a fighting force within it,” the museum said.











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

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