Monday, December 20, 2021

From Ian:

We need you to take back Israel's story - opinion
“Why is Israel carrying out apartheid against the Palestinians?”

I am sure you have encountered a statement that resembles this question plenty of times.

Often when Israel supporters are presented with this sort of question, they find themselves unsure of the best way to answer. So they remain silent.

But the problem is that this silence creates a vacuum that raging antisemites fill with attacks on Jews at an LA restaurant, on a Jewish man walking down a street in Manhattan, and numerous BDS resolutions on college campuses.

If Israel’s detractors continue to fill the space left by our silence then things can get worse.

UK lawyer Trevor Asserson once said that his greatest fear is that, “the democracies of the West and in particular America will get to such a pitch in terms of their attitudes towards Israel that it is simply politically not viable to be seen in any way to be supporting Israel.”

If this happens, Asserson warned, “we are finished.”

And while many Israel advocacy groups work non-stop to promote the truth, it's often the one-on-one conversations that will change someone's mind.

The anti-Israel haters are hell-bent on vilifying Zionism and ultimately destroying Israel through their false narrative and delegitimization campaign. We cannot afford to lose the battle for public support, and we need every voice to help win the battle.

Canadian film describes Jewish refugee plight
The experiences of Jews forced to leave Egypt, Iraq, Tunisia, Lebanon, Algeria, Morocco and Iran are told in a new documentary, ‘L’Exode Silencieux’.

The film , which is 56 minutes long in its full version, was made by the Communauté Sépharade Unifiée du Quebec and the Montreal Consulate of Israel to mark the 30 November annual commemoration of the exodus of more than 850,000 Jews from Arab countries and Iran. It begins by describing the comfortable lives of these middle class Jews. Attitudes towards them changed over time, with the rise of pan-Arabism and repercussions of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Many left with nothing.

Some acknowledge that they were refugees, but never enjoyed the rights of refugees. However, one speaker, Abraham Elarar, objects to describing Moroccan Jews as refugees : he says they left for economic reasons or Zionism.

On the other hand, the historian Georges Bensoussan says that they left out of fear and therefore the word ‘refugee’ could apply to almost all Jews who left the Arab world.

While conditions did vary from country to country, there is no hope of reconciliation while Arab countries distort their own history, Bensoussan claims.

For the first time, Sylvain Abitbol of Justice for Jews from Arab Countries (JJAC) discloses that JJAC appointed the accountancy firm Baker Tilly to carry out an assessment of lost Jewish property and assets. The total value is estimated to be between $300 and $330 billion while the Palestinian losses are estimated to total $30 billion.

Ha'aretz: Jews Were Massacred in 1948 Too, So Why Dwell Only on the Nakba?
However, for Haaretz that was more than enough. The editorial published two days later already stated, categorically and sweepingly: “Soldiers of the Israeli army committed war crimes during the War of Independence, chief among them were massacres in Palestinian villages that were captured in the decisive battles in the lowland plain between the coast and Jerusalem, in the Galilee and in the Negev. People who were alive then described mass murders of Palestinian civilians by the troops who conquered their villages; execution squads; dozens of people being herded into a building that was then blown up; children’s skulls smashed with sticks; brutal rapes and villagers who were ordered to dig pits in which they were then shot to death.”

And Gideon Levy, in a column on the very same editorial page, went, as could have been expected, one step further: “What we did then to the Palestinians we continue to do now, only more forcefully… the mechanisms of whitewash and justification will cover up any disclosure from 1948… Please don’t disturb us, we are carrying on – with the same crimes, or similar ones.” In other words, according to the recent recipient of the Sokolow Prize, Israel’s top award for journalism, today, too, Israel Defense Forces soldiers in the territories murder Palestinians in their masses, smashing children’s skulls, committing violent rape and ordering villagers to dig pits before shooting them to death in those same pits.

What we have here is a truly ecstatic celebration of exaggeration, falsehoods and self-undermining and flagellation, and wallowing in feelings of guilt. If we truly want to pursue a serious discussion of the 1948 war, it must be balanced. If the truth, then the whole truth. If one is quoting historian Benny Morris, please also quote his factual and superb book “1948,” and not only the breakthrough “Birth of the Palestinian Refugee Problem.” And without evading the basic facts: The Palestine Arabs launched murderous acts of hostility immediately after the adoption of the partition plan, which they opposed, by means of 400 armed local militias. Arab armies invaded the Jewish state immediately upon the termination of the British Mandate in order to destroy it and to erase any memory of its existence; those armies included expeditionary forces from distant Iraq and also thousands of volunteers of the Arab Army of Salvation.

If the ideal is the sanctity of historical research and truth, we need to ask where the Palestinian versions of Adam Raz, Akevot Institute and Zochrot are. In any event, my Haaretz colleagues don’t make do with clarifying the facts and often seem to feel that Israelis are required to offer an “apology.” It’s disheartening to be dragged back there again 74 years after the war erupted, but the apology was already formulated by Ephraim Kishon in his genius: “So sorry we won.”

Dexter Van Zile: Evangelical Contempt for Jewish Life in Israel Must Be Confronted
Evangelical Protestants in the United States have a well-deserved reputation for supporting Israel, but there are signs that younger people in that community are abandoning their support for the Jewish state.

One of the factors contributing to this trend is the publication of books by Evangelical scholars who portray Israel as an affront to all that is good in the world, especially the Christian faith.

These writers combine a dishonest portrayal of Israeli and Jewish history with a hostile theological interpretation of Christian scripture. They depict Christian support for Jewish efforts to achieve survival and sovereignty in the modern world as a betrayal of the Christian faith. In this narrative, the Jewish quest for survival and well-being is more worthy of contempt than efforts to kill and terrorize Jews in their homeland. They promote contempt for Jewish life in Israel.

One egregious example of this phenomenon is the writings of Gary Burge, who currently serves as the Dean of Faculty at Calvin Theological Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan. In the first edition of his notoriously hostile text, “Whose Land? Whose Promise? What Christians Are Not Being Told about Israel and the Palestinians,” Burge maligned Israelis with falsehood after falsehood, declaring, for example, that Israeli Arabs are denied membership in Israel’s labor movement, when in fact they have had access to full membership in Israel’s largest union — Histadrut — since 1959. He reported that all Israeli Arabs were barred from service in Israel’s military and that they were prohibited from joining Israel’s major political parties — another falsehood.

In this same text, Burge made his objection to Jewish sovereignty in the land of Israel explicit when he argued that in light of the Gospel of John, Jews who do not believe in Jesus and try to live in the land of Israel will be “cast out and burned.” Predictably, he made no such argument about the residence of Muslims in the Holy Land — just Jews.
DC 3rd graders made to reenact Holocaust ‘because Jews ruined Christmas’
A staff member at a Washington DC school has been suspended after making third-grade children reenact scenes from the Holocaust, including getting them to pretend to dig mass graves and shoot victims, and telling them the Germans were angry “because the Jews ruined Christmas,” parents and officials said Sunday.

The incident occurred Friday at the Watkins Elementary School in the US capital, the Washington Post reported Sunday, citing an email from school principal MScott Berkowitz.

The children had been in a library class working on a self-directed project, when the staff member, who was not identified, made them reenact scenes from the Holocaust. It was not clear what prompted her to do so.

“There was a lot of sobbing and crying and distress and then momentarily we got an email to say that the children had reenacted the Holocaust,” one parent told the Fox5DC TV station. “This included the trains, dying in gas chambers, playing Hitler and mass graves.”

Some children were given specific roles, including one Jewish child who was told to portray Nazi leader Adolf Hitler and then to pretend to commit suicide at the end of the exercise, as Hitler did, the parent of the child told the Post.

Others were told to dig their classmates’ mass graves and simulate shooting the victims.

The instructor allegedly made antisemitic comments during the reenactment. A parent said that when the children asked why the Germans did this, the staff member said it was “because the Jews ruined Christmas.”

Subsidiary governance: an unappreciated risk that can leave companies out in the cold
Issues between the subsidiary and parent company were laid bare when Anuradha Mittal, chair of the Ben & Jerry’s board, issued an unequivocal statement saying, “We want this company to be led by values and not be dictated by the parent company”. The disagreement was further highlighted by the assertion that “The statement released by Ben & Jerry’s regarding its operation in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory (the OPT) does not reflect the position of the independent board, nor was it approved by the independent board. By taking a position and publishing a statement without the approval of the independent board on an issue directly related to Ben & Jerry’s social mission and brand integrity, Unilever and its CEO at Ben & Jerry’s are in violation of the spirit and the letter of the acquisition agreement.” Such challenges spilling over into the public arena can have a very damaging impact on corporate reputation.

The Ben & Jerry’s case reveals other potential subsidiary governance pitfalls, such as those linked to cross-border issues. Ben & Jerry’s is a US company, but Naftali Bennett’s warning that “This is an action that has severe consequences, including legal, and [Israel] will take strong action against any boycott directed against its citizens” was targeted at Unilever, a UK company.

As noted, several US states have already disinvested in Unilever as a result of Ben & Jerry’s actions. This number could rise as more than 30 US states have laws which penalise companies that boycott Israel through public sector procurement. Those restrictions could apply to Unilever just as much as they might apply to Ben & Jerry’s.

The challenge around disinvestment is exacerbated by the multiple jurisdictions across which Unilever operates. Under UK company law, board members must promote the success of the company for the benefit of its members as a whole. It is not easy to see how allowing action by a subsidiary which has such a potential commercial and reputational impact on the parent aligns with this.

The situation is further complicated by the fact that the independent directors of Ben and Jerry’s are constituted to “[Preserve] and [expand] Ben & Jerry’s social mission, brand integrity and product quality, by providing social mission-mindful insight and guidance to ensure we’re making the best ice cream possible in the best way possible”. The unenviable result is two boards with what would appear to be conflicting purposes.
Illinois to divest from Unilever over Ben & Jerry's ban

Antisemite of the Year: Three powerful women contend for 2021 infamy
A trio of famous women are finalists for 2021 Antisemite of the Year dishonors.

British pop star Dua Lipa, US Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene, and Ben & Jerry’s executive Anuradha Mittal are being considered for the dubious award, said competition organizer

“From spreading conspiracy theories to demonizing the Jewish state, each of these individuals has repeatedly and significantly propagated hatred,” said Stop Antisemitism founder Liora Rez, adding the group was “flooded” by more than 5,000 votes during the first leg of its contest.

Lipa, who has denied past allegations of anti-Semitism, has voiced support for Palestinian causes and once shared a post by director Vin Arfuso claiming Israel Defense Forces “thoroughly enjoy beating and shooting children.”

The singer “has been using her fame to vilify the Jewish nation and its people and to promote antisemitism to her fans,” including her 76 million Instagram followers, the group claims.

Greene (R-Georgia) made the list for being stripped of several House committee assignments in February, “after her many anti-Semitic conspiracy theories came to light,” the group said.

Mittal, who has chaired Ben & Jerry’s board of directors since 2008, has been accused of doling out tens of thousands in cash from the controversial ice cream company’s foundation to fund her own pro-Palestinian non-profit, as The Post reported earlier this year.
Rachel Riley awarded £10,000 damages after suing ex Corbyn aide
The television presenter Rachel Riley has been awarded £10,000 in damages by a High Court judge after suing a former aide to Jeremy Corbyn for libel.

Ms Riley, 35, a numbers expert on the Channel 4 show Countdown, sued Laura Murray, who is in her early 30s, over a tweet posted more than two years ago.

Mr Justice Nicklin oversaw the High Court case in London in May and delivered a ruling on Monday.

The judge said Ms Riley was “entitled” to “vindication”.

He had heard how both women posted tweets after Mr Corbyn, who was then Labour leader, was hit with an egg while visiting a mosque in March 2019.

Ms Murray tweeted in response to a tweet by the television presenter.

Ms Riley initially posted a screenshot of a January 2019 tweet by Guardian columnist Owen Jones about an attack on former British National Party leader Nick Griffin, which said: “I think sound life advice is, if you don’t want eggs thrown at you, don’t be a Nazi.”

She added “Good advice”, with emojis of a red rose and an egg.

Later, Ms Murray tweeted: “Today Jeremy Corbyn went to his local mosque for Visit My Mosque Day, and was attacked by a Brexiteer. Rachel Riley tweets that Corbyn deserves to be violently attacked because he is a Nazi. This woman is as dangerous as she is stupid. Nobody should engage with her. Ever.”

Call for Sydney Festival boycott over Israeli funding
A coalition representing Sydney’s Arab community and others are calling on patrons and performers to boycott next January’s Sydney Festival in response to the festival’s $20,000 partnership with the Israeli Embassy in Canberra. The money will be used to stage a performance at the Sydney Opera House of work by Israeli choreographer Ohad Naharin.

In addition, novelist and community organiser Michael Mohammed Ahmad, who had been due to join the festival board, has now refused to take up the position in protest.

Ahmad was among a group of prominent writers and artists who met with festival director Olivia Ansell, board chair David Kirk and chief executive Chris Tooher last week to demand the festival cut ties with the Israeli embassy.

In a letter to the board, the coalition said the partnership with Israel made the festival “unsafe” for people of Arab background.

“Sydney Festival’s partnership with the Embassy of Israel and the use of the Israeli Government Ministry of Foreign Affairs logo in festival promotional material creates a culturally unsafe environment for artists and festival attendees of Arab background, particularly those who are Palestinian,” it read.

The letter went on to demand the festival cut all ties with the Israeli Embassy and remove logos from festival literature.

On Monday,the board issued a written response to the coalition, which includes the Arab Australian Federation, Greens for Palestine and Jews Against the Occupation Sydney.

“We deeply appreciate your time and energy in bringing this issue to our attention,” said the letter signed by Kirk. “Your detailed presentations – as well as the personal accounts shared – have been generous, educational and informative, and set in motion important dialogue within the Sydney Festival itself.”

USC student ‘diversity’ senator under fire for tweet threatening to kill Zionists
A student “diversity” representative at the University of Southern California is under fire for a series of explosive tweets, including one that threatened to kill “every motherf–ing Zionist.”

Yasmeen Mashayekh, a “diversity, equity and inclusion” senator to the Viterbi Graduate Student Association posted the now-deleted tweet in May, according to Fox News.

The USC student has a history of pro-Palestinian and anti-Israel tweets including one from June that said: “If you are not for the complete destruction of Israel and the occupation forces then you’re anti-Palestinian,” according to Fox.

She has also tweeted her support for Hamas, whose military wing is considered a terrorist organization. In May, Mashayekh tweeted “Yes I f–king love hamas now stfu,” Fox said.

“Zionists are going to f–king pay,” she reportedly said in a tweet on June 21.

Mashayekh doubled down on her tweets on a podcast by Palestine in America on Dec. 2, saying she feels no obligation to apologize.

More than 60 current and former USC faculty members drafted a letter to the school’s leadership, calling on them to “publicly and explicitly rebuke Yasmeen Mashayekh for her offensive behavior and to distance USC from her hateful statements.”

Critics Slam ‘Anti-Islamophobia’ Bill
Supporters of the legislation “make a habit of slandering and libeling other Muslims in the Muslim Reform Movement as Islamophobes,” Jasser wrote in his article. “Islamists uniformly exaggerate the frequency, extent and proportionality of anti-Muslim bigotry compared to other minorities in the United States.”

Jasser called the bill “the first step down the road towards an American Caliph, an established religious office in government issuing edicts regarding what Islam is or isn’t.”

Ellie Cohanim, former deputy special envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism, criticized the bill for failing to define Islamophobia, noting that the State Department’s definition of anti-Semitism is clearly defined. She said the legislation would be used to silence critics as “Islamophobic.”

She pointed out that Omar, who introduced the bill, has a history of anti-Semitic comments such as her “all about the Benjamins” remarks insinuating that support for Israel is driven by a profit motive. Omar, along with Linda Sarsour and Rep. Rashida Tlaib, cynically label criticism of themselves as “Islamophobia,” Cohanim told the DCNF.

“This labeling is an effort to silence those who take issue with the anti-American and anti-Semitic statements [Omar and other “squad” members] have made in the past including, for example, Omar’s recent attempt to compare the United States to the Taliban,” Cohanim told the DCNF.

Guardian review praises antisemitic book
Cypel’s venom isn’t limited to morally obscene comparisons of Israel and Zionism to white supremacy and Nazi Germany. In chapter 10, titled “No, No, you can’t quote me on that: the blindness of French Jews“, he takes aim at French Jews, and the leading Jewish organisation in France, CRIF, whose agenda he claims is controlled by Jerusalem. Ignoring the fact that up to half of all hate crimes in France are antisemitic, he accuses Jews of creating a ghetto for themselves, as if they were under siege, of rejecting the French ideal of fraternité and of harbouring disturbing Islamophobic attitudes – ignoring that Muslims are far more likely to hold antisemitic views than most French people.

Cypel also attacks American Jews who emigrated to Israel, claiming, in chapter 4, that many left the US because they were “repelled by American diversity and integration with Blacks”.

These are just a few examples of the lies, venom and calumnies in the book legitmised and praised by the Guardian – 300 plus pages that read like an antisemitic manifesto, a book for those seeking to affirm their malign obsession with Israel and Jews.
Handbook for Latin America in Works to Establish Antisemitism Parameters
A handbook is being created on how to apply the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism in Latin America, it was recently announced.

Fernando Lottenberg, the Organization of American States’ commissioner for monitoring and combating antisemitism, and Ariel Gelblung, director of the Simon Wiesenthal Center for Latin America, will work on completing the handbook together.

They urge Latin American countries to adopt the tool and “incorporate it into their national legal bodies as a way to identify antisemitism and educate, legislate, prevent and take care of the Jewish citizens of the region and eventually punish the perpetrators,” the Simon Wiesenthal Center said Thursday in its announcement of the project.

“The agreement was immediate, and we will get to work to make available all the experience acquired in the field on the application of the definition to achieve a continental scope,” said Gelblung.

Its director for international relations, Shimon Samuels, added: “Of all our projects in common with the Organization of American States, this is the most ambitious.”

“We will accompany the commissioner in his work, just as with his peers in the European Commission,” noted Samuels. “Latin America deserves to have its own application handbook adapted to the reality of the region, enriched by the experience of the Wiesenthal Center.”
Online shop in Ukraine removes “Holocoste” sweatshirt after complaints
An online shop in Ukraine has removed a sweatshirt from its website that parodies the brand Lacoste with the word “Holocoste” after receiving complaints.

Action came about after Elina Katz, a Program Coordinator for Project Kesher in Ukraine, noticed the merchandise online. Members of the organisation then wrote a letter to the website and within two hours, the article of clothing had been removed.

Vlada Nedak, the Executive Director of Project Kesher Ukraine, said: “Our lawyer said to me, ‘Two hours, it’s too long. They should answer you in less than 30 minutes.’

“The next time I will know this better.”

In September, the Ukrainian Parliament passed a law banning “antisemitism and its manifestations”. Despite this, multiple Chanukah displays were vandalised across three cities in Ukraine during the festival of Chanukah.
Teenagers being indoctrinated into neo-Nazism by their peers, new report says
Teenagers are being indoctrinated into neo-Nazism by their peers, a new report says.

The study, produced by the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation & Political Violence (ICSR) at Kings College London and the CST, found that in looking at the growth of ten neo-Nazi youth movements, the radicalisation into the racist ideology was being enacted from teenagers to fellow teenagers, as opposed to older members to younger ones, a perception that the study dismissed as largely a myth.

The report states: “With very limited exceptions, all groups in the sample demonstrate antisemitic beliefs, demonising the Jewish community and often depicting them as the root of various problems. This includes promoting antisemitic conspiracy theories and occasionally inciting violence against the Jewish community. Islamophobia and xenophobia are also common.”

Discussing what the report, titled “We Are Generation Terror!”, termed “youth-on-youth radicalisation”, the report’s author Hannah Rose said: “Young people are both vulnerable to online grooming through manipulation by seasoned extreme-right extremists and, increasingly they are themselves the groomers, the propagandists, the recruiters and the plotters, and the convicted perpetrators.”

The report also found that social media platforms’ restrictions on racist content, namely Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and Telegram, were being easily bypassed.

Campaign Against Antisemitism recently produced a series of posts highlighting TikTok’s problem of allowing content that promoted Holocaust denial.

Hate Crimes Against Jews, Asians Spiked Across New York City in 2021, With Manhattan Seeing Highest Number
A major spike in hate incidents in New York City in 2021 was driven by those occurring in the borough of Manhattan, NYPD data shows.

Hate crimes against Asians and Jews have driven this year’s doubling of hate crimes in in New York, police statistics revealed this month.

An NYPD breakdown through Dec. 12 shows that Manhattan had the most hate crimes of any of the city’s boroughs, with 199 incidents, the New York Post reported Sunday. 134 of those occurred in the Manhattan South precinct alone.

Brooklyn had 119 incidents, Queens 102, the Bronx 44, and Staten Island 17.

The data on 481 of the incidents showed 55 were assaults and 11 robberies.

The largest rise in hate crimes was against Asians, with a 368% increase over last year, with 131 incidents. Those against Asians rose by 49%, as of the latest figures.

The spike has had serious effects on the Jewish community. In recent months, a spate of attacks on Jews in Brooklyn has included a man struck with a projectile from a moving car, another who was beaten outside a nightclub, and a pregnant woman who had a drink thrown in her face. Antisemitic attacks also spiked in May on the heels of Israel’s war with Hamas, with several attacks in Midtown surrounding protests over the conflict.
Antisemitic flyers distributed to Greensboro Jewish community, North Carolina
Antisemitic flyers were distributed to members of the Greensboro Jewish community in North Carolina on Sunday morning.

The flyers featured conspiracies about blaming the Jewish community for COVID-19 and the nation's efforts to combat its spread, reported by local North Carolina news station Channel 2.

The flyers were sent to both Jewish and non-Jewish households along with their newspapers.

Local Fox affiliate Channel 8 received photos of the flyers but did not share the whole flyer to prevent the continued spreading of these antisemitic claims. The picture does show the flyer is titled "every single aspect of the Covid agenda is Jewish" and is placed between a Star of David and a pentagram.

The religious leaders of the Greensboro Jewish Federation, Temple Emanuel, and the Beth David Synagogue released a statement saying the flyers seek to "spread antisemitic, blatantly false, and evil conspiracies about the Covid-19 virus and our nation's efforts to combat its spread", the Algemeiner Journal reported.

North Carolina Congresswoman Kathy Manning has responded to the situation: “I am appalled by the antisemitic flyers that were distributed across Greensboro this morning in driveways and on porches, causing great distress to many people who reached out to me with concerns.

83 years after Kristallnacht, sections of lost Torah scroll resurface in German town
A German Protestant minister has handed over segments of a long lost Torah scroll to the city of Görlitz in southeast Germany, 83 years after his father, a town policeman, came into possession of them.

While it is not unheard of for German non-Jews to turn over religious objects that have been lost or hidden since the Nazi period, the Torah scroll fragments took an unusually circuitous journey before coming to light last week.

The Torah had not been seen since Kristallnacht, the pogrom against synagogues and Jewish property in German-speaking lands on November 9 and 10, 1938.

According to Pastor Uwe Mader, 79, the minister who turned the fragments over to the town, the story began with his father, Willi Mader. Born in Görlitz in 1914, Willi was a young police officer in training when he was called to the synagogue on the night of the anti-Jewish pogrom.

Uwe Mader told the Säschsiche Zeitung newspaper that his father never spoke about what happened that night, so it is unclear how the four Torah fragments actually ended up in the policeman’s hands. Uwe Mader believes they must have been cut out by someone who could read the Torah and carefully selected certain passages, including the creation story and the Ten Commandments.

The fragments changed hands several times over the years of Nazi and later Communist rule.
Israel Is the Third Most Vaccinated Country in the World Per Capita
As the Omicron coronavirus strain is spreading throughout the world, researchers at Israel's largest hospital, Sheba Medical Center, have concluded that people who were vaccinated with Pfizer shots half a year ago or more had "almost no neutralizing ability" against Omicron, while those given a booster shot were far better protected.

Thanks to Israel's early decision to give boosters, at a time when the World Health Organization loudly opposed third doses, Israel is the third most-boosted country in the world per capita, after Iceland and Chile.

Israelis have received 44 booster shots per 100 citizens, which is particularly high given that there is a large population of under-16s who are largely ineligible for boosters.

The figure for the U.S. stands at 17 booster shots per 100, and the world average is 5.
Israelis Provide Assistance and Solidarity Following Tornado Devastation in Kentucky
Israel’s Consul General of Israel to the Southeast United States Anat Sultan-Dadon got a firsthand look on Friday at the destruction left in the wake of last week’s deadly tornados in Kentucky.

“It is honestly heartbreaking to see really the tragic effects of what swept through here a week ago,” she told JNS shortly after her visit. “But on the locations at both the elementary school and church we visited,” which are being used as either shelters or distribution sites, “it was heartwarming and moving to see so many who came to help those in need currently. That is a testament to the strength of the community here and the American people.”

Sultan-Dadon, whose consulate post includes Kentucky and the Southeast, said she wanted to convey Israel’s support for the people of Kentucky, and “our love and friendship during these difficult days.”

During the visit, she delivered some 400 backpacks filled with toys, toiletries, school supplies and other essentials to the Hopkins County School administration for distribution. Among the towns serviced by the school district are Dawson Springs and Earlington, both sites of significant damage.

Joining in the visit were Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.), first responders, local politicians and others.

This is the second donation the Israeli government has made to people in the area.

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