Wednesday, January 26, 2022

From Ian:

Majority of Israelis see bleak future for Europe's Jews, poll shows
A survey by the Hebrew University of Jerusalem revealed Tuesday that a majority of Israelis (53%) think life for Jews in Europe will get worse in the near future, while 25% say it will stay the same.

The survey was conducted among 1,000 Jewish and Arab adults and reveals that France is the European country perceived as being the most antisemitic, with 39% of those questioned describing it as such.

Next come Poland (33%) and Germany (15%). Germany, however, is considered the most antisemitic country according to ultra-Orthodox Israelis.

Israeli Arabs rank Poland and Germany first.

A third of Jewish Israelis surveyed believe that criticism of Israel is intrinsically linked to antisemitism, while a majority argue that there is "sometimes" a connection between the two.

When asked if European Union policies are motivated by antisemitism, 27% of Jews say they are and an equal share rejects the notion outright, with 40% saying some are and others no.
It's not complicated. It's antisemitism
While there are still unanswered questions, to argue the terrorist’s actions were not a gross act of antisemitism would constitute willful disregard of all available circumstantial evidence.

Yet this is exactly what the President of United States initially suggested when he tried to question why the perpetrator was willing to commit an act of antisemitism. “We just don’t know,” he said. Really? We don’t know? The answer was in his own statement.

The FBI publicly announced that they did not believe that a synagogue attack where four Jewish hostages were held indicated antisemitism. Only after great uproar following the FBI’s announcement did they correct their statement. If there would be no other way to characterize an attack on a black church by an apparent apologist for white supremacism than to call it racism, then why, when Jews are at the center of the story, does everyone hesitate in calling it antisemitism?

What’s more, Wajahat Ali, a columnist for the Daily Beast, tweeted out his prediction that the hostage situation was going to lead to “ugly and vicious Islamophobia and anti-Muslim bigotry.”

In the middle of a situation where Jews are cowering in the face of a dangerous man who took over the synagogue for antisemitic and pro-terrorist reasons, Ali cynically focuses attention, not on the very real scourge of Islamic antisemitism, but on anti-Muslim bigotry. Could anyone imagine this statement being offered in the situation outlined above? Of course not, and yet his tweet made it around the world in a matter of minutes.

Jews represent just over 2% of the US population but account for almost 60% of all US religious hate crimes. Despite this staggering statistic, members of congress, the White House, federal agencies, the media, and social media have been gaslighting US Jews into believing antisemitism might not be what we think it is and might not be the prevailing reason Malik Faisal Akram targeted a synagogue. It’s not that complicated. The answer is: it’s antisemitism. These efforts to suggest otherwise or divert attention away from this fact are outrageous and antisemitic in and of themselves.
‘We Cannot Hope to Defeat It If We Cannot Define It,’ Assert Those at Conference on Antisemitism
Addressing the conference, US Rep. Ritchie Torres (D-NY) spoke of the danger of letting “antisemitic poison into the bloodstream” of American political discourse, warning that sentiments on the far-left could devolve into those promoted by former British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn.

“We have to be willing to speak out against the antisemitism in our own backyard,” said Torres.

As a pro-Israel progressive, he spoke out against the BDS movement’s efforts to delegitimize Israel and ostracize progressive members of the pro-Israel community. He underscored the need “to drive home the message that there are people like me who are pro-Israel not despite our progressive values, but because of them. … There’s no country [in the Middle East] more protective of minority rights, women’s rights, LGBTQ rights [than Israel] … it’s a tableau of religious pluralism. By every metric, Israel is a profoundly progressive country and enterprise, and that’s a message that needs to be driven home here in American politics.”

Gil Troy, a distinguished scholar in North American history at McGill University and a leading Zionist activist, explained that understanding Judaism is a prerequisite to understanding Zionism. He said Judaism is not just a religion, but a mix of peoplehood and religion involving the Jewish people, the land of Israel and the State of Israel.

Troy said that today, traditional antisemitism is “transferred to the Jewish state.”

He raised the questions of why only Jews are asked to give up Zionism’s nationalism when there are 192 countries around the world built around nationalism, and why Jews are asked to give anti-Zionists a pass when members of other marginalized groups would never be asked to downplay racism and hate.

“Why do we Jews have to say, ‘Oh, my goodness, they [anti-Zionists] might be somehow nice.’ They’re not!” he said.

CST condemns "appalling" BBC over Chanukah bus reporting statement
The Community Security Trust has reacted furiously to the BBC’s statement about the Chanukah bus row, accusing the corporation of misrepresenting its position, the JC can reveal. In the complaint resolution posted on its website, the BBC claimed that the CST had verified that an anti-Muslim slur could be heard in the recording.

The CST strongly rejects this allegation. In a statement, the CST said: "CST completely rejects the claim in today's BBC report that CST confirmed to the BBC on 2nd December that an anti-Muslim phrase had been spoken on the Chabad bus that was attacked on Oxford Street."

"The BBC's claim is a completely misleading representation of the exchanges between the BBC and CST on that day. CST informed the BBC of this before today's report was published but they have gone ahead anyway. Their behaviour is appalling and deeply damaging."

The BBC statement said: "The claim was put by the reporter in the television item to the representative of the CST with whom he had been dealing, who replied (in a WhatsApp exchange which the ECU has seen) in terms which the BBC took as confirmation that the phrase in question had been spoken.”

According to sources close to the matter, the CST strongly denies that its staff gave the BBC this validation and is poised to make a statement publicly to this effect.

It comes amid an evening of high drama following the release of the findings of the BBC’s complaint unit today.

A Long Overdue Response to Campus Antisemitism
Last week, Carol L. Folt, president of the University of Southern California, released a letter to the University’s Jewish community in which she promised “specific new actions to . . . combat antisemitism” at USC.

This isn’t the first time President Folt, who took office in 2019, has commented on antisemitism. In 2020, Rose Ritch, then vice-president of the student government, resigned amid a social media campaign to “impeach her Zionist ass.” Like other Jewish students who take exception to the idea that Jewish states alone have no right to exist, Ritch was familiar with ignorant, vile equations of Zionism with white supremacy. But after weeks of variations on this theme, Ritch had had enough.

Her resignation letter drew a response from President Folt, who agreed that Ritch had been subjected to “antisemitic attacks” and pointed to rising antisemitism on American campuses, including USC. Yet the “Stronger than Hate” campaign she endorsed in response, though run through USC’s Shoah Foundation, addresses antisemitism only as one among a grab-bag of other hatreds. A document explaining the program leads with “anti-Black racism” and recognizes only one kind of antisemitism, the right-wing kind.

Last week’s statement was occasioned by the social media pronouncements of an engineering student, who said, among other things, “I want to kill every motherf**cking Zionist” and “yel3an el yahood” (curse the Jews). Perhaps the “Stronger than Hate” campaign, looking solely to its right, didn’t reach this particular student who was serving as “diversity, equity and inclusion senator” for the engineering school’s Graduate Student Association.

President Folt says that USC will now form a new Advisory Committee on Jewish Life to “review a number of proposed actions to tangibly support Jewish and Zionist students, faculty, and staff.” USC will also ensure “Jewish representation and inclusion in” its “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion efforts,” and supplement its “bias and harassment training protocol . . . to include antisemitism.” In a final move, not specific to antisemitism, USC will establish a “student-focused campus pledge to act in accordance with our community principles and unifying values.”
On eve of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, ‘Students 4 IHRA’ campaign launched
On the brink of International Holocaust Remembrance Day this Thursday, StandWithUs and the International Legal Forum announced the collaborative launch of a new multimedia-based campaign, "Students 4 IHRA: United to Define it."

The organizations said the novel drive will magnify the voices of students who are combating hate on campus, using the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance Working Definition of Antisemitism.

The IHRA definition is the most widely used definition of antisemitism in the world, with over 30 countries and hundreds of civil society and educational institutions having endorsed it, including 137 universities globally.

The campaign will also educate and provide students with the legal tools, resources and skills to confront and combat the alarming rise of antisemitism on campuses around the world. The campaign website will serve as a center for information and resources about IHRA, as well as providing practical tools and skills to respond to antisemitism.

ILF chairman and CEO Arsen Ostrovsky noted that the initiative comes as antisemitism is surging on campuses.
As antisemitism sweeps across UK campuses, this is what it's really like being a Jewish student right now
Last month I spoke at a conference in Poland for the European Jewish Association, which is drawing together testimony from Jewish students from around Europe; antisemitism is a huge and growing problem all over the continent.

Some of the stories they uncovered include one student in Holland involving police because she’d had death threats and her university asked her, “don’t you think you deserve it?” She ended up leaving. Another student in Holland was told that Jews spread Covid. While a guy studying in Barcelona talked at the conference about how all his friends applauded antisemitic things on social media.

As weird as it sounds, hearing about all this hatred of Jews on other campuses was scary but it was also reassuring. I didn’t feel so alone; it highlighted the fact that my experience wasn’t unusual or even the worst case.

The UK’s Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi was among other politicians at the conference I spoke at, and he vowed that he would listen and offered to meet with me. Last week, he followed through on his promise and we met to discuss antisemitism on university campuses, and the importance of creating initiatives to combat it. Zahawi has pledged to meet and work with UK Lawyers for Israel – an independent association of lawyers who are the forefront of tackling this issue – to gain further insight and advice.

This is a problem that needs to be properly looked at. Universities need to take antisemitism on their campuses seriously, instead of looking the other way or even blaming the Jew.

We are living in a time when minorities are rising up and asking that racism against them is taken seriously. I hope that one day universities will understand that means antisemitism too, so that we are the last generation of Jewish students who have to go through this.

Will George Washington U Let Middle East Studies Ass’n Operate International Anti-Israel Academic Boycott From Its HQ On GWU’s Campus?
Does George Washington University support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel? It says it doesn’t, and talks the talk of supporting the free exchange of ideas and engagement, but is it walking the walk?

LIF has asked, but neither the president nor the media office responded about whether GWU intended to observe the Israel boycott resolution approved at the Middle East Studies Association’s December 2, 2021, business meeting.

On the surface, GWU has academic freedom guidelines committing it to “free inquiry, free expression, and the vigorous discussion and debate,” and cautioning faculty and others not to silence others’ views.

After the American Studies Association voted in 2013 to support an academic boycott of Israel, GWU issued a statement saying, “We continue to believe that academic exchanges and conversations lead to better understanding between nations and people of differing views.” GWU also stated it planned to continue its multiple relationships with Israeli institutions as well as to explore new ones.

In 2018, after the university’s student association passed a divestment resolution, GWU’s former President, Thomas J. LeBlanc, was quick to issue a statement asserting that “this does not represent the university’s views, and the university will not implement such a proposal.” He also “encourage[d] the GW community to foster an inclusive environment and to continue to engage in open, respectful dialogue.”

Yet, in May 2020, GWU appointed BDS advocate Ilana Feldman as Interim Dean of its Elliott School of International Affairs. Feldman, an anthropology professor at GWU, had a long history of leadership on BDS. Among other things, she co-sponsored a BDS resolution submitted to the American Anthropological Association in 2015, and was one of a handful of members managing the effort to secure its passage.

Earlier, in 2019, the university reached an agreement to bring MESA from Arizona to a new headquarters at GWU. MESA, which at least in the past was the premier academic association for Middle East Studies, has been involved in a long game of anti-Israel, pro-BDS advocacy. MESA has many international institutional and individual members.
Ontario Catholic School Teacher’s License Revoked for Promoting Holocaust Denial, Blaming 9/11 on Israel in Classroom
An Ontario school teacher’s license was revoked after it emerged that he promoted Holocaust denialism, blamed Israel for the September 11th attacks, and raised other antisemitic conspiracies in the classroom, the Canadian Jewish News reported last week.

The Ontario College of Teachers (OCT) confirmed in December its decision to rescind the license of Joseph DiMarco, a former history teacher in the Northeastern Catholic District School Board. He had previously been terminated by his employer, O’Gorman High School, in November 2019.

The body cited complaints about DiMarco from as early as 2016, the CJN found, when he told a student, “looking at your face is starting to make me feel hate.” The OCT report, which concluded an investigation of the allegations, found that he also taught students to blame the 9/11 terrorist attacks on Israel and, citing his purported research, browbeat them into consulting Holocaust denialist texts.

“When students tried to challenge or question [DiMarco’s] assertions about the figure of 6 million deaths not being accurate, [he] was dismissive, reminding the students how much research he had done,” the OCT report said. “The member shared his view with students that the Israeli government is a malicious force and that it frames itself as the victim by exaggerating the tragedy of the Holocaust in order to make the world more receptive to its agenda.”

DiMarco also interjected his own private materials into his lessons on the Holocaust, the CJN reported, including a “Zionism slideshow” he made that featured a clip of a 1990s broadcast of “The Montel Williams Show” in which Holocaust “revisionists” denied, in the presence of Holocaust survivors, that any Jews were murdered in gas chambers.

“The member [DiMarco] knew or ought to have known that his teaching risked arousing antisemitic sentiment among his students,” the OCT report said.

“There is no place in the classroom for Holocaust denial or conspiracy theories,” B’nai Brith Canada CEO Michael Mostyn told the CJN. “The teacher in question agreed to a statement of facts that was damning. We are pleased he is no longer in the classroom.”
Hollywood: Wake up and smell the antisemitism
Hollywood needs to wake up realize when Jews are portrayed as racist, dysfunctional and hate-filled people, there is a rise in antisemitic attacks in Boro Park and Monsey.

In the last few years, Hollywood has produced quite a few TV shows and films that portray traditional Jews as racist, misogynistic and backward people.

Last year, in NBC’s Nurses, a hassid expresses contempt toward “goyim,” the Yiddish word for non-Jews, as well as Arabs and women. The Netflix reality show My Unorthodox Life promotes the false idea that religious women have no freedom and solely serve as baby-making machines. In Unorthodox, another Netflix miniseries, the protagonist escapes sickening abuse and dysfunction in her hassidic community.

These are only a few of the films and shows that paint skewed representations of the Orthodox community.

Jew in the City is a nonprofit organization that works to “change negative perceptions of religious Jews and make engaging and meaningful Orthodox Judaism known and accessible.” One of its missions is to hold traditional media accountable for accurate reporting and the creation of positive Orthodox content.

Jew in the City’s founder, Allison Josephs, tweeted earlier this month: “Spoke to a secular Jewish TV exec from a very popular show who is sick of the constant negative portrayals of Orthodox Jews and wants to do something about it & wants our help. It is almost 15 years of speaking about this issue and thankfully people are finally listening!!”
‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’ Star Cheryl Hines Slams Husband RFK Jr’s ‘Reprehensible’ Invocation of Holocaust at COVID-19 Anti-Vax Rally
Actress and comedian Cheryl Hines on Monday denounced her husband Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s comparison of mass vaccinations against COVID-19 with the Nazi Holocaust as “reprehensible and insensitive.”

Hines — who plays Larry David’s long-suffering wife in the hit HBO series “Curb Your Enthusiasm” — took to Twitter after coming under pressure from social media activists to criticize her husband’s comments.

At a rally in Washington, DC, on Sunday, Kennedy opined that Dr. Anthony Fauci, the leading COVID-19 expert in the US, was orchestrating a form of “fascism” worse than that of Nazi Germany.

“Even in Hitler’s Germany, you could cross the Alps to Switzerland. You could hide in an attic like Anne Frank did,” Kennedy explained.

Hines, who married Kennedy in 2014, said that her husband’s reference to Anne Frank — the Dutch Jewish girl diarist who perished in the Belsen concentration camp — had been “reprehensible and insensitive. The atrocities that millions endured during the Holocaust should never be compared to anyone or anything. His opinions are not a reflection of my own.”

However, Hines’ tweet came nearly 30 minutes after Kennedy himself apologized. “I apologize for my reference to Anne Frank, especially to families that suffered the Holocaust horrors,” he posted on Twitter. “My intention was to use examples of past barbarism to show the perils from new technologies of control. To the extent my remarks caused hurt, I am truly and deeply sorry.”
Unilever spinning off Ben & Jerry’s into separate unit in corporate overhaul
Ben & Jerry’s parent company Unilever plans a massive overhaul that includes job cuts and a global restructuring that will have the Vermont-based ice cream maker operate under a separate umbrella along with its sister brands Breyers and Klondike.

The popular seller of flavors like Chunky Monkey and Salted Caramel Brownie is one of more than 400 brands in the Unilever portfolio, which includes Dove, Lipton, Hellmann’s, Knorr and others.

Unilever investors expressed dismay last year when Ben & Jerry’s refused to sell its products in the Israeli-occupied West Bank — prompting demands for a boycott of the popular ice cream brand.

Unilever has said its hands were tied and it could not pressure Ben & Jerry’s to reverse its stance due to the terms of its $326 million acquisition of the ice cream maker in 2000.

It is unclear if the public backlash to Ben & Jerry’s decision played a role in the parent company’s restructuring.

Reporting for Reuters: Henriette Chacar, Who Stated Israel Practices ‘Apartheid’ and Is ‘Built on Jewish Supremacy’
In a 2018 op-ed for The Intercept, which HonestReporting has critiqued (see here and here), Chacar defended the Palestinian Authority’s “Pay-for-Slay” program that provides stipends to convicted terrorists and their families, with more money being doled out to those who shed the most blood.

The piece, titled “U.S. Law Cutting Aid to Palestinians Punishes Any and All Resistance to Israel’s Occupation,” slammed American counter-terrorism laws that preclude providing financial assistance to Ramallah so long as it continues its policy of rewarding terrorists with monthly “salaries.”

In it, she writes:
The [US] law cuts off all financial aid to the Palestinian Authority until the body stops making payments to political prisoners and the families of those killed by Israeli security forces.”

Conveniently omitted is any information about who these “political prisoners” are and what crimes they were convicted of.

And no mention that, in this context, those “killed by Israeli security forces” had their lives ended while in the process of committing attacks.

One can only imagine what Chacar means by “any and all” forms of “resistance.”
Guardian invents new anti-Israel smear 'sportswashing'
“The basic idea behind most modern antisemitism”, wrote the CST’s Dave Rich, “is that Jews must be up to something”. “Whatever Jews say and do”, he added, “can’t be taken at face value: they must have some ulterior motive or hidden agenda that needs to be uncovered”. This understanding of anti-Jewish racism can be applied to those who routinely demonise the Jewish state.

Thus, Tel Aviv’s internationally renowned Pride Parade isn’t a rare example in the Middle East of LGBT freedom, but, it’s alleged, a cynical hasbara campaign orchestrated by Jerusalem and its supporters to “pinkwash” the occupation. Talented Israelis on tour with the Batsheva Dance Company aren’t merely performing their art to foreign audiences, but, it’s argued, are complicit in a process of hoodwinking audiences into ‘believing’ Israel is a normal country.

And, when Israelis excel at protecting their population from the ravages of COVID, the narrative isn’t about the state’s innovative healthcare system that other countries learn from, but about obfuscation of their “racist” decision to prioritise their own citizens’ health over that of the Palestinians.

As the Guardian is one of the global media outlets most attuned to uncovering such ‘Zionist treachery’, it’s not surprising that they’ve recently uncovered a new avenue by which the Jewish state hoodwinks the world: “Sportswashing”.

In short, it argues that Israeli pro-cycling teams and events are PR efforts designed to draw attention away from the state’s “abysmal human rights record, treatment of Palestinians and continued defiance of international law”. “We have no problem, the piece argues, “linking the manifold abuses of Qatar or Saudi Arabia or China to their investment in sport. And yet there appears to be a certain squeamishness about referring to Israel in similar terms…”
New Media Outlet Grid Backed by Progressive Stars, Gulf Money, and Foreign Agents
The new progressive media outlet Grid, which has attracted press buzz and big-name talent, was developed by registered lobbyists for the United Arab Emirates with funding from UAE's deputy prime minister, the Washington Free Beacon has learned.

Grid, which went live earlier this month and whose masthead boasts ABC News, Vox, and NPR alums and left-leaning blogger Matthew Yglesias as its editor-at-large, raised seed money from a holding company owned by Emirate royal Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the deputy prime minister of the United Arab Emirates. Grid also consulted with a Washington, D.C., lobbying firm that is a registered foreign agent for the UAE during its development.

The foreign funding and lobbyist involvement raise questions about the news outlet's independence—and whether it should be required to register as a foreign agent with the Department of Justice, according to ethics experts. In recent years, the DOJ has cracked down on news outlets that receive foreign funding and seek to influence a U.S. domestic audience, pushing Russia's RT and China's CGTN to register as foreign agents. News of Grid‘s funding ties comes amid scrutiny into UAE's ramped-up lobbying in Washington, where the oil-rich Gulf state has poured millions into influencing the United States on issues such as climate change and relations with its regional adversary, Qatar. Last year, former Trump associate Tom Barrack was indicted for allegedly working as an unregistered lobbyist for the Emirates, charges he denies.

"While Grid‘s goal to provide more comprehensive and in-depth coverage of news stories is laudable, it's concerning that the seed money for this project came from a company owned by the deputy prime minister of the UAE," said Ben Freeman, an expert on foreign influence and author of The Foreign Policy Auction.

"The UAE has one of the worst levels of press freedom in the world and the UAE government has repeatedly been caught illegally meddling in U.S. politics and elections," Freeman said. "Is this really who we want bringing us the news?"
Ryerson University Apologizes for Omitting Antisemitism in Magazine's Ad - Honest Reporting Canada
On January 24, HonestReporting Canada asked “Will Antisemitism Register at Ryerson University and its Magazine?”

We were referring to the Winter 2022 issue of Ryerson University Magazine that was recently distributed to alumni and friends as many people contacted HonestReporting Canada expressing concern that a featured program that Ryerson is jointly producing with TD Bank called “Generous Futures: Power and Politics in Charitable Giving,” did not list combating antisemitism as one of the program’s talks, despite that the webinar series has featured panel discussions about combating Islamophobia, anti-Asian racism, ageism, and working to advance disability rights, LGBTQ+ rights, black voices, etc.

As we noted in our alert and in our posts on social media, Jews are the number one victims of hate crimes in Canada, and a Toronto Police report said that Toronto saw a 63% rise of antisemitic incidents recently.

We noted that the talks listed in Ryerson’s Magazine are all completed talks that were conducted in 2021, with the exception of a forthcoming talk on January 31, 2022 on advancing disability rights.
British Online Troll Who Called for Another Holocaust, Glorified Hamas Pleads Guilty to Harassing Jewish Public Figures
Using a new legal device, British activists have succeeded in obtaining the conviction of an antisemitic troll who harassed and abused several major Jewish public figures and organizations.

Nicolas Nelson, 32, pled guilty to one count of malicious communication and two counts of racially aggravated harassment, the Jewish Chronicle reported Tuesday.

One of Nelson’s primary targets was screenwriter Lee Kern, who co-wrote Sacha Baron Cohen’s starring vehicle “Borat, Subsequent Moviefilm.”

Kern called Nelson a “malevolent racist” and described his harassment as relentless and extremely abusive.

Nelson, said Kern, “called for another Holocaust, called me Shylock, spoke of Jews being used for gun practice, called Jewish women whores, shared perverted sexual fantasies involving Hitler and glorified the antisemitic terror organization Hamas.”

“He believed he was able to make these attacks on Jews with anonymity and impunity,” Kern said. “He was mistaken.”

“Justice will now be served,” he added. “All those who think they can attack Jews anonymously and get away with it should pay heed. We have the motivation and commitment to come after you hard. And we succeed.”

Boston Museum Returns Painting Looted During World War II to Heirs of Former Jewish Owner
The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA) has agreed to return a 17th century Dutch painting to the heirs of late Jewish collector Ferenc Chorin, who placed the artwork in a bank vault before fleeing Hungary during World War II, only to have the vault’s contents looted in 1945.

“View of Beverwijk” (1646) by Salomon van Ruysdael is currently on public display at Christie’s in New York, and was originally scheduled to be auctioned later this year.

The MFA acquired “View of Beverwijk” in 1982 from a London dealer “with no information about its history other than that it had come from a Swiss collection,” the museum said on Monday, adding that it was “not aware that the ‘View of Beverwijk’ had belonged to Chorin or was considered missing.” The museum also said that the work appeared in a 1988 publication about objects lost in Hungary during World War II, but the painting had been paired with the wrong image and description.

In 2019, art historian Sándor Juhász informed the MFA that the artwork once belonged to Hungarian hotelier Frigyes Glück, from whose estate Chorin purchased the painting. After the museum updated that detail about the painting’s provenance on its website, Chorin’s heirs were about to locate the painting in 2021, following a years-long search.

“We are pleased to have worked so quickly and amicably with the heirs of Ferenc Chorin to redress this historical loss,” MFA director Matthew Teitelbaum said in a statement. “The return of Ruysdael’s ‘View of Beverwijk’ underscores the importance of transparency and providing online access to our collection.”
German Police to Act Against Use of Nazi-Era ‘Jewish Stars’ at Berlin COVID Protests
Police authorities in the city of Berlin will have the authority to crack down on protesters wearing the so-called yellow “Judenstern” (“Jews’ Star”) badges and other symbols associated with the Nazi era at demonstrations against pandemic restrictions.

According to an internal update by the Berlin police antisemitism commissioner, cited by German newspaper B.Z. Berlin, “the use of adapted ‘Jewish stars’ at gatherings can now be assumed to be a fundamental disturbance of public peace.”

Since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, activists in Berlin and elsewhere in Germany have taken to the streets comparing social restrictions placed on individuals refusing the vaccines with the plight of Jews racially persecuted by the former Nazi regime. Germany does not have a mandatory vaccination policy but, like other countries, eases certain social-distancing restrictions for those who get inoculated.

Specifically, demonstrators have frequently donned the yellow Star of David badges that Holocaust victims were forced to wear under Nazi persecution, often marked with the word “unvaccinated” in place of the word “Jew.”

The procedural instructions by Berlin authorities mean that the police can intervene for security reasons and impose restrictions before gatherings that ban the wearing of the controversial symbols. Police officials must secure the yellow stars and document relevant evidence.

Berlin’s police antisemitism commissioner clarified that wearing a Star of David in public as a purely religious symbol is not punishable.
Robert Rinder writes about “the tragic reality of being Jewish in London in 2022”
Robert Rinder has written about “the tragic reality of being Jewish in London in 2022” in a new article, published yesterday.

In the article for the Evening Standard, the barrister and television personality has written about how antisemitic insults were hurled at his friend’s children whilst they were at a falafel restaurant in Golders Green, despite them not being Jewish.

Mr Rinder wrote: “But as she told me this awful story, I realised — with a profound sadness — that I was completely unsurprised. Because it’s happening to Jews all the time.”

“It’s completely shattering to think how the grimy tendrils of anti-Jewish hatred have spread over so many aspects of life in the UK, whether it’s being spat at or accosted in the street or any of the countless other acts of abuse,” he continued. “For example, many in the Jewish community send their children to Jewish schools, and I think it’d break your hearts to see the precautions they have to take.”

Mr Rinder went on to state that he believes that the vast majority of the people in the United Kingdom are appalled by anti-Jewish racism, “but this is the tragic reality of being Jewish in London in 2022. Not in some far off time or place, but right now and right here; in the greatest, most cosmopolitan city in the world.”

Mr Rinder called on people to “stand up to every instance of cruelty, big or small, because the descent into human depravity never begins with grand acts of violence, it starts with murmured insults and grows from there,” and added that “It’s the subtle way horror gets going — not with a bang or people screaming hate in broad daylight, with whispered comments everybody else tolerates.”
Over 15,000 Holocaust survivors passed away last year
As the world prepares to mark International Holocaust Remembrance Day on Thursday, the Holocaust Survivors' Rights Authority in the Social Justice Ministry published on Wednesday data about the number of survivors living in Israel.

This past year, the authority and the ministry took steps to adapt the services they provide to survivors, given their advanced age and the effect of the COVID pandemic.

Currently, 165,800 Holocaust survivors and victims of antisemitic attacks during the Holocaust live in Israel, 90% of whom are 80 or older. The average age of survivors is 85. Some 31,000, or 19%, are over 90, and over 950 are over 100. This past year, 15,324 survivors died.

The figures from the Holocaust Survivors' Rights Authority indicate that 60% of the survivors known to the authority are women, whose average age stands at 85.4. Nearly two-thirds (64%) of known survivors were born in Europe. The largest group – 36%, or 59,900 were born in the former Soviet Union, followed by 19,100 born in Romania, 8,900 who were born in Poland, 4,500 who were born in Bulgaria, 2,400 who were born in Hungary, and 2,300 German-born survivors.

Another 36% of the known survivors in Israel were born in Asia and North Africa, including 30,600 Moroccan and Algerian-born citizens who suffered under antisemitism and antisemitic restrictions under the Vichy government. These include 18,000 Baghdad natives who were victimized by antisemitic rioting in Iraq in June 1941. Another 11,000 were born in Tunisia and Libya and were subjected to race laws and sent to labor camps.

Only 5% of known survivors in Israel made aliyah before the state of Israel was founded, while another 11% arrived by the end of 1948. Some 80,500 (48%) made aliyah by the end of the 1950s and over one-third made aliyah starting in 1989 in the big wave from the former Soviet Union. In 2021, an additional 98 survivors made aliyah.
‘Part of the Family’: Social Media Campaign Highlights ‘Righteous Rescuers’ Who Saved Jews During the Holocaust
Ahead of International Holocaust Remembrance Day on Thursday, a unique social media initiative is putting a spotlight on the stories of the “Righteous Among Nations” or “Righteous Rescuers” who bravely helped save the lives of Jews during the Holocaust.

As part of the campaign, “#DontBeABystander: Those Who Risked It All To Save A Life,” the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany (Claims Conference) will share a series of two-minute videos highlighting the heroism of non-Jewish individuals who risked their lives to save Jews in German-occupied Europe.

That includes the rescuers of Sidney Zoltak, born in 1931 in Siemiatycze, Poland, whose family lived under the Nazi occupation beginning in June 1941. A year later they were forced into a ghetto within their town, but managed to escape the evening before it was liquidated.

After being on the run for almost two years, in the spring of 1943, when Zoltak was a young teen, the Krynski family sheltered them on their farm for 14 months — including seven months spent hidden in an underground bunker.

The Catholic Polish family also later sheltered Zoltak’s uncle, as well as his Jewish friends. When Zoltak and his parents returned to their hometown after being liberated in July 1944, they found that less than 70 Jews had survived from the 7,000 living there before World War II.

Zoltak reunited with the Krynskis in 1997 in Poland and again in 2019, where three generations of both families stood together on the same field that provided underground shelter during the Holocaust.

“We would speak to each other on the telephone all the time,” Zoltak told The Algemeiner on Thursday. “We talked to each other about the fact that we don’t consider each other as strangers — we consider each other as part of the family. And we also agreed that it was a wonderful feeling. We do feel as if we are blood relations.”
Auschwitz foundation launches ‘Indifference Challenge’ to counter apathy to racism
The Auschwitz Pledge Foundation on Wednesday launched a grant program called “The Indifference Challenge” that will reward projects tackling racism, antisemitism, and discrimination.

The launch comes on the eve of the 77th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp built by Nazi Germany in occupied Poland — a date that has become International Holocaust Memorial Day.

“What culminated in the Holocaust began with seemingly inconspicuous forms of discrimination,” Piotr Cywinski, head of the Auschwitz-Birkenau Museum and chairman of the Auschwitz Pledge Foundation, said in a statement.

“The hard truth is — bystanders facilitate discrimination and that is exactly what hatred needs to grow,” he said. He added that the problem “is present here and now, and it will only get worse if we don’t act.”

“The education system, media environment, and popular culture fail to teach about the dangers of indifference to casual discrimination. We want to change this,” he added.

The Indifference Challenge offers grants of up to 30,000 euros ($33,800) to projects for “fighting indifference” to racism, anti-Semitism and misogyny, as well as discrimination against migrants and LGBTQ people.

Auschwitz-Birkenau has become a symbol of Nazi Germany’s genocide of six million European Jews, one million of whom died at the camp between 1940 and 1945 along with more than 100,000 non-Jews.
Gen. Eisenhower guaranteed the world would NEVER FORGET
General Omar Bradley said of the atrocities at Ohrdruf:
“The smell of death overwhelmed us even before we passed through the stockade. More than 3200 naked, emaciated bodies had been flung into shallow graves. Others lay in the streets where they had fallen. Lice crawled over the yellowed skin of their sharp, bony frames.”

On January 20, 2022, on the 80th anniversary of1942, the Wannsee Conference of top Nazis, where the Germans planned how to murder Europe’s Jews, the UN General Assembly passed a resolution condemning Holocaust denial, the denial predicted by Eisenhower. Israel was joined by Germany as the prime sponsors of the resolution, and 100 other nations joined it.

Other than January 27 and last week’s passing of the condemnation of Holocaust denial, the international body spews Antisemitism. It is the same hatred Jews have faced for the past two thousand years. The only difference for the hatred is that they substitute the word Israel for Jews.

The UN, which except for the security council, is run by its majority–despotic nations. The despotic countries have unfairly slandered, libeled, and attempted to de-legitimize the only democracy in the Middle East and the only Jewish State in the world. It’s the same age-old hatred but made to sound benign. Saying they hate Israel or its leaders, but what they really mean is they hate Jews.

Just like the Shoah, the UN’s hatred is done right under the noses of the world’s democracies. They don’t want to protect the Jews, and the counties supposedly friendly to Israel, such as Great Britain and France, for example, abstain from anti-Israel resolutions.

On International Holocaust Remembrance Day and every other day, may the memories of those who suffered through the Shoah always be for a blessing. And may we never forget what evil men can do when appeased by the rest of the world, just like the nations who abstain today.

And know that if it wasn’t for General Dwight D.Eisenhower, who refused to abstain from the truth, the world would have been more likely to forget.

Anonymous Philanthropist Gifts Israeli Life-Saving Tech to 500 US Synagogues and Schools
After the January 15 hostage situation at Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville, Texas, security at Jewish institutions around the country has become a major priority.

With that in mind, an anonymous philanthropist recently called Yoni Sherizen, CEO of Gabriel Network, asking for help. “We are grateful that nobody from the congregation was injured or killed, but there is a concern that next time we may not be so fortunate,” he said.

Gabriel Network is an Israeli startup that develops smart technology for security and safety incidents. Co-founders Yoni Sherizen and Asaf Adler decided to launch the startup after a terror attack in Israel and a mass shooting in Florida highlighted the shortcomings of today’s response, which all too often result in delayed reactions, chaos, and the loss of life.

“We saw the ability to democratize technology that had previously been available only to special units and put these life-saving tools in the hands of people who need them most. Improving preparedness and delivering a safer, smarter, and faster response is what motivates us every day,” Sherizen says.

“Give me the lowest possible price for maximum community coverage,” the anonymous donor requested. The Gabriel team offered to provide a starter kit at cost to every institution that wanted it if the philanthropist would pay for installation, training, and the first year of service to ensure communities were adequately equipped and using the technology. If communities wanted to expand beyond the kit, GN would extend a special discount and possibly more support.

The anonymous donor pledged $1 million to cover 500 locations and is enlisting friends to match his gift to help every single synagogue, school, and campus community in the country (an estimated 5,000 buildings).
Ancient Hebrew amulet discovered at Joshua’s altar in Samaria
An ancient Hebrew amulet has been found among the remains of an excavation carried out at the Mount Ebal archaeological site in Samaria, where the biblical altar of Joshua is located.

The amulet contains an ancient Hebrew script, a mark reminiscent of a lotus flower as well as the Hebrew letter “Aleph.” The researchers have not yet completed their research in order to understand its source.

“This is further proof of the deep and inseparable connection between the Jewish people and Samaria – the heart of the Land of Israel,” said Yossi Dagan, head of the Samaria Regional Council.

The discovery of the altar of Joshua in the West Bank by archaeologist Prof. Adam Zertal, who died in 2015 and was once head of the Archaeology Department at Haifa University, is one of the most significant discoveries in the history of archaeology in Israel.

The researcher, Zvi Koenigsberg, who assisted Zertal in the excavations at the Joshua altar from 1982 to 1988, described the process of finding the amulet.

“After the excavation, we left many piles of dirt we dug,” said Koenigsberg. “And given that the piles may contain valuable finds, a group of Prof. Zertal’s friends moved them to a safe place where they could be inspected. After many years, the appropriate means of examining the dirt were developed.”

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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 18 years and 38,000 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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