Thursday, May 05, 2022

From Ian:

Israel is not a shtetl, Messrs. Putin and Lavrov
What happened?

Well, something happens to some people when things go wrong. They revert to old labels and libels. Many of us have had this experience on a personal level when a trusted friend, suffering a setback, goes, shockingly, to a dark place, and thus reveals a hidden, ugly truth about himself. Amazing how this happens to you and me and…throughout history.

Until the present day…a period in which Israel celebrates its Independence, won by a miracle or two and by the heroism of its sons and daughters.

Out of the ashes, Israel is a strong, vibrant country, world-class in science, technology, agriculture, medicine, literature, and certainly as a model in democracy.

All it took was 74 years, when other nations are still learning to tie their shoelaces.

Therefore, Israel is not a shtetl that can be pushed around, as it was in the good old days.

Enter Lavrov. It’s tempting to signify his comments as beyond the pale…as we speak of any insinuation beyond reason.

Just as likely, we’re talking about the Pale of Settlement, a region designated as places of confinement for Russia’s Jews between the mid-1700s until 1917.

Thus it was under the tsars, and likewise under Stalin and his purges.

Somehow the instinct persists. Which has it that Jews are to be marked as separate and unequal and always to be subject to the whims of these or those tyrannical overlords.

Not this time.

Israel is a beacon of liberty, so much so that every citizen has a say, and if its politics occasionally runs wild, as is the case in a freedom-loving nation whose literacy rate in extremely high… this much Lavrov achieved through his slander; he united the (political) tribes. All sides, left, right, the middle, all in one voice denounced his reckless smear.

Hands off, Messrs. Putin and Lavrov. Those shtetl days are finished. Israel has arrived.
Putin apologizes for Russian envoy’s ‘Jewish Hitler’ comments, Bennett’s office says
In a phone call Thursday, Russian President Vladimir Putin apologized to Prime Minister Naftali Bennett for incendiary comments made by the Kremlin’s top envoy earlier this week, the prime minister’s office said.

The comments by Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov claiming that Adolf Hitler had “Jewish blood,” and the following back-and-forth between Israel and Russia, marked the worst flare-up between the countries since Russia invaded Ukraine.

“The prime minister accepted the apology of President Putin for comments by Lavrov and thanked him for clarifying the president’s view of the Jewish people and the memory of the Holocaust,” Bennett’s office said.

The Kremlin said Putin spoke with Bennett about “historic memory,” the Holocaust and the situation in Ukraine, without mentioning an apology.

Bennett also requested Putin “examine humanitarian options” for evacuating the Ukrainian city of Mariupol. “The request came following Bennett’s conversation with the president of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, yesterday,” Bennett’s office said.

Putin said Russian forces will allow the evacuation of civilians, the prime minister’s office said.

Earlier Thursday, Putin sent a message to President Isaac Herzog to “congratulate” him on Israel’s Independence Day.
History of US State Department Shows ‘Jewish White Privilege’ Is a Myth
One State Department official even has ties to an organization that propagates antisemitism. As the Washington Free Beacon reported in February 2021, the then-nominee for the post of Under Secretary for Civilian Security, Democracy and Human Rights, Uzra Zeya, had previously worked for the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs (WRMEA). As a WRMEA staffer, Zeya had helped compile research for a book that argues that “the Israel lobby has subverted the American political process to take control of US Middle East policy.”

Accusations of undue and pernicious Jewish power meet the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of antisemitism, which has been adopted by numerous governments and entities—including the US State Department. She was later confirmed to her position.

As CAMERA highlighted, WRMEA has, among other things, implied that Israel was connected to the JFK assassination and the Sept. 11, 2001, Al-Qaeda terrorist attacks, and has published books with chapters that warn about “Jewish Power in the Formulation of US Middle East Policy.”

WRMEA has also accused Israel of profiting from the sale of human organs — a modern-day incarnation of the antisemitic blood libel.

As the historian and Israeli official Michael Oren chronicled in his 2007 book “Power, Faith, and Fantasy,” there is a long history of State Department officials holding anti-Zionist and even antisemitic views. For example, Paul Knabenshue, the consul general in Jerusalem in the 1920s, blamed Jews for the violence perpetrated against them.

After the 1929 pogroms that left hundreds of Jews dead and many more wounded, Knabenshue said that “the Jews are always responsible, for they generally bring their troubles upon themselves.” Knabenshue dismissed attempts by the US Congress to protect Jews as the product of “Jewish financial influence.” The foreign service official, Oren writes, was “archetypal of those State Department officials later known collectively — and often derisively — as Arabists, a diplomat who had spent many years in the Middle East, knew Arabic, and despised the Zionist movement.”

This phenomenon was ably documented by Robert Kaplan in his book “The Arabists,” with one former State Department official telling the author that the “powerful, vested interest of a certain group of people, concentrated in the big cities in big states, determines our Middle East policy.”

3 dead, 4 injured in terror attack in Elad in central Israel
At least three people were killed and four others injured in a terrorist attack in the Israeli city of Elad near Petah Tikva towards the end of Independence Day.

All three victims were men in their 40s.

Two of the victims aged 60 and 35 were seriously wounded and transported to Sheba Medical Center at Tel Hashomer and Rabin Medical Center-Beilinson Campus sedated and intubated. Another 40-year-old male was moderately wounded and transported to Beilinson, and a 23-year-old male who fought with the terrorists was conveyed in mild condition to the hospital.

MDA Paramedic Alon Rizkan, who arrived at the scene and treated the victims called it "a very difficult call.”

"Unfortunately, this incident will be deeply etched in my heart," said MDA volunteer Moti Tsinvert. "In all my years as an emergency medicine paramedic, I have not encountered such a severe scene of multiple casualties with significant penetrating injuries, residents who went out just to breathe fresh air in the park, and their lives were ended so harshly."

"This is a massacre and bloodbath that is reminiscent of dark days in the history of Israel. I hope that I and the rest of the emergency services that dealt with the horrific event will be able to return to routine after the difficult images we saw," added Tsinvert.

Police and IDF special operations units were investigating the background of the incident, Police Spokesman Sgt. Eli Levy said, and according to reports, the victims were injured by two men, one wielding an ax, in two different locations including near Elad Amphitheater Park.

The Pinsker Centre Podcast: Ep. 20 - A Security Smorgasbord - Internal and External Threats Facing Israel
In this episode of People Talk… Politics Oliver, Thomas and Avishai unpack various internal and external security threats facing Israel.

The fellows highlight Iran’s extensive sponsorship of international terrorist groups and the Iranian regime’s pursuit of a nuclear bomb.

In terms of internal security dynamics, the implications of the use of cyber tools, namely NSO group’s Pegasus Spyware, for the balance between security and privacy in Israel is also debated.
2022: A vastly inflated Palestinian demography
Official Palestinian demographic numbers are highly inflated, as documented by a study that has been conducted since 2004:

500,000 overseas residents, who have been away for over a year, are included in the Palestinian Authority census, contrary to international regulations. 325,000 were included in the 1997 census, according to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, and 400,000 in 2005, according to the Palestinian Election Commission. The number grows steadily due to births.

350,000 eastern Jerusalem Arabs are double-counted—by Israel and the Palestinian Authority. The number grows daily due to births.

Over 150,000 Arabs who married Israeli Arabs are similarly double-counted. The number expands daily due to births.

370,000 Arab emigrants from Judea and Samaria are excluded from the population census of the Palestinian Authority, notwithstanding the annual net emigration since 1950. For example, 17,958 in 2021, 26,357 in 2019, 15,173 in 2017, 16,393 in 2015 and 24,244 in 2014, as documented (exits and entries) at all the land, air and sea international passages.

A 32% artificial inflation of Palestinian Arab births was documented by the World Bank (page 8, item 6) in a 2006 audit.
DMFI responds to Jayapal’s idea to make pro-Israel dollars treif
Mark Mellman, the president of Democratic Majority for Israel’s political arm, warned leaders of the Congressional Progressive Caucus that it would be engaging in potentially discriminatory behavior if it changes its endorsement rules to exclude members who accept campaign contributions from the pro-Israel group.

The idea was recently floated as a possibility by Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA), the CPC chairwoman.

“Reforming our campaign finance system as a whole is a laudable goal,” Mellman explained to Jewish Insider on Tuesday morning. “But I don’t think the progressive caucus is going to want to allow endorsees to ‘accept’ anti-Israel money, but then turn around and discriminate against pro-Israel Democratic money, especially since they’d be repudiating a core element of the Democratic platform and the Biden-Harris agenda, which is support for a strong U.S.-Israel relationship.”

Mellman was responding directly to comments from Jayapal, who suggested to Punchbowl News on Monday that caucus leaders had been weighing the imposition of such a provision. Her remarks came amid rising tensions between far-left and moderate Democrats over the CPC’s recent endorsement of DMFI-backed Rep. Shontel Brown (D-OH), who is seeking reelection today in the Cleveland-area primary.

Jayapal said the CPC’s executive board had been mulling the possibility of revising its political action committee’s endorsement process “based on,” among other things, “whether somebody accepts this kind of giant PAC money, whether it’s from the crypto billionaires or whether it’s from DMFI.”
Espionage tangos with terror in Amazon series about Argentina’s unresolved bombings
Jewish-Argentinian director Daniel Burman’s new Amazon Prime Video series “Yosi, the Regretful Spy” begins with a huge pile of debris, policemen carrying bodies and bleeding survivors crying for help. They are images that Burman remembers well from the terrorist attack on the 1992 Israeli Embassy in Buenos Aires.

“I knew people who were working there. Luckily, they survived,” Burman tells The Times of Israel in an interview in Berlin, where the first three episodes of his eight-part series recently screened in their world premiere at the Berlinale. The Spanish-language series was released worldwide with English subtitles on April 29.

On March 17, 1992, Burman was walking towards his parents’ house in the Buenos Aires neighborhood of Once, the city’s Jewish quarter.

“Suddenly I heard the howling of sirens. My parents were traveling, so their apartment was empty. When I arrived there, I turned on the TV and was totally shocked by what I saw,” he says.

On that afternoon, a pickup truck loaded with explosives drove into the Israeli Embassy and detonated. Twenty-nine people were killed in the suicide attack and the embassy building was destroyed.

Less than two years later, on July 18, 1994, a car exploded in front of the Argentine Israelite Mutual Association (AMIA) Jewish center in Buenos Aires, killing 85. It remains Argentina’s deadliest terrorist attack to date. That time Daniel Burman was even closer to the bombing.

“I live only five blocks away from the AMIA,” he says. “I was arriving from Uruguay that day and was driving home in a taxi only 20 minutes after the attack. Suddenly, the streets were so full that I got out of the car and walked home. I saw people walking in chaos and all the lights were out in the area.”

Both attacks have been linked to Iran and the Hezbollah terror group it funds, but the perpetrators were never brought to justice. Some Buenos Aires officials have been accused of covering up Iranian involvement in the attacks.
Agency backtracks after calling Israel 'catastrophe' for Arabs
A Ministry of Economy and Industry agency charged with overseeing vocational colleges has recently sent out an instructional video aimed at helping educators deal with Arab-Israeli tensions during Independence Day in which it implicitly recognized Israel's founding as a negative development for Palestinians.

Palestinians usually refer to Israel's independence as the Nakba, which means catastrophe in Arabic, and occasionally hold anti-Israel events on May 15, the date in 1948 when Israel declared statehood.

In the video, which was sent along with a written document, was sent to the directors of various colleges in Israel, it said: "We must recognize that Independence Day is Nakba Day [Catastrophe Day] for Arab citizens and allow such workers not to stand in silence during the siren on Memorial Day." The presenters also added, "Expressing joyfulness during Independence Day can be misconstrued as disrespect for Nakba Day."

The official government video shows an Arab man and a Jewish woman, with the former saying "Nakba Day" and the latter "Independence Day". It calls on college directors to adopt a "flexible" approach to Arabs who resist taking part in the moment of silence when the sirens blast nationwide. "Be considerate of those who want to avoid being present during those times," it says, referring to both Arabs and Jews.
High Court greenlights expulsion of 1,300 Palestinians from army firing zone
Israel’s High Court ruled late Wednesday night that the Israeli army could evict around 1,300 Palestinians living in eight villages in the South Hebron Hills, after a legal battle lasting more than 20 years.

In a unanimous decision, Justice David Mintz wrote that the Palestinian petitioners had not successfully proved they had lived in the villages as permanent residents before the army declared the area a training zone in the area in the early 1980s.

The Palestinians have maintained that their presence in the villages goes back decades. The Israeli army, by contrast, argued that they had occasionally entered the area during seasonal migration — meaning they had no rights to the land.

Palestinians living in the firing zone’s eight villages — who can now be legally expelled — slammed the decision.

“This is the final proof for us that there is no justice to be sought for Palestinians in Israeli courts. There’s only justice for Jews,” said Nidal Younes, 64, who directs an unofficial local council of the Palestinian villages.

The Israeli military has said it is willing to permit the local Palestinians to return to cultivate the land and herd livestock there on the weekends and on Jewish holidays, when the army does not conduct drills.
MEMRI: Yemeni Academic Dr. Abd Al-Wadud Muqasher: Muslims Must Exterminate The Jews; Allah Transformed Jews Into Apes And Pigs, They Are The Filthiest Of Allah's Creatures
Yemeni university professor Dr. Abd Al-Wadud Muqasher said in an April 26, 2022 show that aired on Al-Masirah TV (Houthis – Yemen) that the Muslims' conflict with the Jews is religious and existential and not a conflict over borders. He elaborated that according to the Quran, the Jews are the "filthiest and most evil human beings" and were transformed into apes and pigs by Allah. In addition, Dr. Muqasher said that the Muslims must exterminate the Jews and that every Muslim must fight in order to liberate Palestine and Jerusalem from their filth. Dr. Muqasher also cited Adolf Hitler and Mein Kampf, and accused the Jews of spreading AIDS, cancer, and immorality throughout Egypt after the Camp David Accords.

"Our Conflict With The Jews Is An Existential Conflict Of Civilizations... We Must Teach Our Children That We Are Waging Resistance Against The Filthiest And Most Evil Human Beings"

Abd Al-Wadud Muqasher: "We know that we are not fighting [only] Israel. If we were fighting [only] Israel, we would have wiped it out by now, but we are fighting Israel and those behind it — America and the Crusader West. We must unite and fight all these together.

"We should know that our conflict with the Jews is an existential conflict of civilizations. It is not a conflict about borders, be it the borders of 1967 or 1948. All this is not true, it is an illusion.

"The shocking truth that everybody knows full well is that our conflict with the Zionists is an existential one, not a conflict about borders. We must teach our children that we are waging resistance against the filthiest and most evil human beings. While it is true that they are humans, they are the most despicable [ones], as mentioned in the Quran.

"The Quran mentioned that Allah transformed them into apes and pigs, and into everything that is repulsive to the human soul.

Every Muslim "Must Exterminate [The Jews]; We Must Not Extend Our Hand To Them, Because They Are The Most Despicable, Most Treacherous, And Ugliest Creatures Of Allah"

"The resistance continues. The Jews know that they will be exterminated one day, very soon.

UN chief expresses ‘grave concern’ over Hezbollah’s arms ahead of Lebanese elections
The UN chief called for Lebanon’s parliamentary elections on May 15 to be “free, fair, transparent and inclusive” in a report circulated Wednesday, and warned of Hezbollah’s destabilizing presence in the country that is undergoing multiple crises.

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said in the report to the UN Security Council that political polarization in the country has deepened and the Lebanese people “are struggling daily to meet basic essential needs.” He pointed to frequent protests across the country sparked by “public frustration with the political situation and the economic and financial crisis.”

The May 15 elections for parliament are the first since Lebanon’s economic meltdown began in late 2019. The government’s factions have done virtually nothing to address the collapse, leaving Lebanese citizens to fend for themselves as they plunge into poverty, without electricity, medicine, garbage collection or any other semblance of normal life.

The elections are also the first since the August 4, 2020, catastrophic explosion at Beirut port that killed more than 215 people and wrecked large parts of the city. The destruction sparked widespread outrage at the traditional parties’ endemic corruption and mismanagement.

Guterres, who visited Lebanon last December, said no one has yet been held accountable for the explosion and the Lebanese people are demanding “truth and justice.” He reiterated his call for “a swift, impartial, thorough and transparent investigation” and stressed that “the independence of the judiciary must be respected.”

In the May 15 election, a total of 103 lists with 1,044 candidates are vying for the 128-seat legislature, which is equally divided between Christians and Muslims.

Congress Probes Biden Admin After Taliban Uses US Biometric Data To Target Allies
Congress is demanding answers from the Biden administration following a disclosure that reams of biometric data abandoned by the United States during its bungled withdrawal from Afghanistan are being used by the Taliban to target American allies still stuck in the war-torn nation.

Eight Republican senators led by Sen. Marsha Blackburn (Tenn.) are asking the State and Defense Departments to turn over information related to the evacuation of U.S. troops in Afghanistan that allowed the Taliban to retake control of the country. In addition to leaving behind $7 billion worth of military hardware, the United States abandoned "sensitive data, including biometric data," on Afghan allies that are now reportedly being used by the Taliban to target those who supported the United States’ 20-year war in the country.

"These systems, which were abandoned when the U.S. military withdrew from Afghanistan, contained iris scans, fingerprints, photographs, occupational data, home addresses, and names of relatives," the senators wrote, according to a copy of the letter obtained exclusively by the Washington Free Beacon. "The Taliban is using this personal information to increase targeted killings, torture, and forced disappearances of Afghans who helped the United States." The senators warned that "the Taliban will continue to target the vulnerable with equipment and information that the Biden Administration left behind."

The probe comes just weeks after Human Rights Watch, an advocacy organization, released a bombshell report detailing how the Taliban is using abandoned biometric data to eradicate those who worked alongside the United States.

With the international community focused on Russia’s unprovoked war in Ukraine, the Taliban has increased its assault on U.S. allies stuck in Afghanistan. An unknown number of Afghan citizens who aided the United States remain in hiding as the Taliban uses the U.S. government’s own data to abduct these individuals. The senators’ investigation into the matter is the latest Republican effort to unearth the extent of damage caused by the Biden administration’s decision to evacuate Afghanistan.
NY jury set to begin deliberating in trial of man accused of spying for Hezbollah
A defense lawyer urged jurors Tuesday to reject a prosecutor’s claims that his client is a terrorist who photographed US landmarks as potential targets, saying the government didn’t prove anything during a two-week trial.

Attorney Marlon Kirton said his client, Alexei Saab, is a victim of “a clear case of government overreach.”

He spoke during closing arguments after Assistant US Attorney Jason Richman repeatedly labeled Saab a terrorist, saying he came to the US to scope out potential targets for Hezbollah’s Islamic Jihad Organization from 2000 to 2005 even as he lived a double life, working as a software engineer for technology companies.

Among the potential targets researched by Saab were Rockefeller Center, Grand Central Terminal, all three New York area airports, the Brooklyn, Triborough and George Washington bridges and the Lincoln and Holland tunnels connecting New Jersey to Manhattan.

And Richman noted one more target in his argument to convict in Manhattan federal court.

“He sits here in a courtroom inside a courthouse he once photographed for Hezbollah,” the prosecutor said.

The one-time Morristown, New Jersey, resident pleaded not guilty to terrorism charges after his 2019 arrest, as authorities disclosed that he had been interviewed by FBI agents during 11 sessions over several weeks.
62 senators, including 16 Democrats, vote to oppose nuclear-only Iran deal
A majority of senators, including 16 Democrats, voted on Wednesday night in favor of a non-binding Senate measure that opposes entering into an Iran deal addressing only the regime’s nuclear program as well as the removal of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ terrorism designation. The final vote on the measure was 62 to 33.

Wednesday’s vote came on a motion introduced by Sen. James Lankford (R-OK), as part of the Senate’s consideration of the United States Innovation and Competition Act (USICA) aimed at countering China.

The motion instructs the senators negotiating the final bill with the House to “insist” that the legislation include language requiring any nuclear weapons agreement with Iran to include provisions “addressing the full range of Iran’s destabilizing activities,” including missiles, terrorism and sanctions evasion; does not lift any sanctions on the IRGC; and does not revoke the IRGC’s terror designation.

The Biden administration has sought to rejoin the 2015 nuclear agreement, from which the Trump administration withdrew in 2018. The original deal did not address issues beyond Iran’s nuclear program.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Sens. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Chris Coons (D-DE), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV) Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Mark Kelly (D-AZ), Angus King (I-ME), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Gary Peters (D-MI), Jacky Rosen (D-NV), Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), Jon Tester (D-MT) and Ron Wyden (D-OR) voted for the measure.

The measure had reportedly become a matter of contention in the Senate, with some Democrats trying to block the vote. Lankford allegedly threatened to block Senate proceedings on the bill unless guaranteed a vote on the measure.

Rising Oil Prices Buy Iran Time in Nuclear Talks, Officials Say
Emboldened by an oil price surge since Russia invaded Ukraine, Iran’s clerical rulers are in no rush to revive a 2015 nuclear pact with world powers to ease sanctions on its energy-reliant economy, three officials familiar with Tehran’s thinking said.

Last year, the Islamic Republic engaged in indirect talks with the United States as a route to cancelling US sanctions that have gutted revenues and dramatically worsened economic hardships for ordinary people, stirring discontent.

But the talks have been on hold since March, chiefly over Iran’s insistence on Washington removing the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), Tehran’s elite security force, from the US Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) list.

While the ultimate aim is still to resurrect the deal and to have sanctions lifted, the Iranian officials said soaring oil prices had opened a window of opportunity for Iran by increasing revenues, giving the economy months of breathing space.

“Our nuclear program is advancing as planned and time is on our side,” said a senior Iranian official, who declined to be named because he was not authorized to discuss sensitive policy issues with the media.

“If the talks fail it will not be the end of the world,” said the official, adding that the fact Iran’s economy was not now so reliant on a revival of the deal would provide strong leverage for its negotiators if or when the talks resumed.
Honest Reporting Podcast: The Latent Racism in Anti-Israel Activism: My Experiences as a Zionist Jew of colour – A Fireside Chat with Tyler Samuels, Educator & Social Media Influencer
The anti-Israel movement characterizes itself as a moral beacon calling out the alleged crimes committed by the Jewish State. But their allegations are frequently characterized by ignorance, malice, and quite often, racism.

In this week’s episode of The Honest Report, we sit down with Tyler Samuels, a Toronto-based Jew of Colour and social media influencer, for his take on how the supposedly progressive anti-Israel cause has often become intertwined with racism.

Why the Harvard Crimson’s call for BDS is dead wrong
The Harvard Crimson has published an anonymous statement by its Editorial Board in favor of the notorious Boycott, Divest and Sanctions campaign (BDS) against Israel: In Support of Boycott, Divest, Sanctions and a Free Palestine. Despite the editorial’s portentous style, as a Harvard alumnus (GSAS 1987) I do feel it’s important to respond in an instructive way, since there seems to be much these Harvard students are unaware of.

The fundamental problem is encapsulated in the editorial’s headline, which links the BDS campaign to a free Palestine, and thereby – unintentionally – undermines the entire argument of the Crimson and the BDS movement as well. For history shows that Israel has agreed to a “free Palestine” multiple times, only to be vetoed by the Palestinians.

In other words, why bludgeon Israel with a BDS campaign if the Israelis have repeatedly accepted a Palestinian state? Perhaps those in favor of attacking Israel are ignorant of this history, or perhaps creating a Palestinian state is not as important to them as destroying the Jewish state.

Either way, the history is worth repeating. As the legendary Israeli diplomat Abba Eban once said about relations between the Arabs and Israel, “The Arabs never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity,” and there have been many statehood opportunities that Palestinian leaders have wilfully missed. Unfortunately, what usually follows these missed Palestinian opportunities for peace are violent attacks against Israeli civilians, such as the 1948 War and the 2000 Intifada, in which thousands of Israelis were needlessly murdered.

Why do Palestinian leaders refuse a negotiated peace? Because a negotiated peace means the end of the conflict, or at least promising to end the conflict and accept Israel. But the Palestinian leadership wants a state so that they can continue the conflict from a stronger position. In particular, they want a state and they want to keep pressing in every way for the “right of return” to Israel.

Israel would not agree to that in negotiations, which is why Palestinians want a state without negotiations, and without having to make any compromises.

Far-left rabbis’ defamatory war against pro-Israel Jewish charities
Israel has been suffering rising terror attacks from its enemies on multiple fronts within the past month. Palestinian Arab and Bedouin Islamist terrorists murdered 15 innocent Jews and others in cold blood. The Palestinian Authority, Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) and the Islamic State (ISIS) are inciting more terror with calls to “escalate confrontation with the Israeli occupation and force it to retreat from Palestinian soil.” Hamas is “celebrating” Ramadan by firing rockets from Gaza into southern Israel. Palestinian Arab factions are firing rockets from Lebanon into northern Israel. Palestinian Arabs vandalized and set fire to Joseph’s Tomb, a sacred Jewish religious site. Arab rioters are throwing rocks, pipes and fireworks at Jewish worshippers and police at the Western Wall and Temple Mount.

Compounding this suffering, 19 rabbis of the far-left group T’ruah are attacking pro-Israel Jewish charities that help Israeli families victimized by Palestinian Arab terror. They went public with their defamatory June 2021 letter, demanding that the New York Jewish Communal Fund should stop allowing grants to the humanitarian Central Fund of Israel (CFI). Stopping such grants would harm the 350-plus charities funded by CFI.

T’ruah has been waging a war against pro-Israel charities for years, including by filing complaints demanding revocation of the tax-exempt status of pro-Israel Jewish charities, including CFI.

Its rabbis are thus making common cause with those in the anti-Israel “Squad” of the U.S. House of Representatives and efforts to persuade the IRS to remove pro-Israel charities’ tax exemption, which would constitute illegal viewpoint discrimination.

In July 2021, seven Democratic congressional members—Reps. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.), Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), Cori Bush (D-Mo.), André Carson (D-Ind.), Mark Pocan (D-Wis.), Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) and Betty McCollum (D-Minn.)—wrote to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen demanding revocation of the tax-exempt status of pro-Israel Jewish charities that provide humanitarian aid if some of it helps Jews in the lawful, historic Jewish homelands of Judea and Samaria, as well as parts of Jerusalem. The letter by “The Squad” specifically targeted CFI and American Friends of Beit El Yeshiva (previously headed by former U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman).

Jewish Groups Denounce Upcoming UCSD SJP Event Featuring Taher Herzallah
Jewish groups are denouncing UC San Diego’s (UCSD) Students for Justice in Palestine’s (SJP) upcoming event featuring American for Muslims in Palestine (AMP) Director of Outreach Taher Herzallah.

The event is scheduled to take place on May 4. Stop Antisemitism wrote in an April 30 post on their website that Herzallah has defended Hamas’ rocket attacks against Israel as “an oppressed people’s audible cry for help” and described a picture of a bloody Israeli soldier as “the most beautiful site.” He has also disrupted David Friedman’s confirmation hearing in 2017 as the United States Ambassador to Israel as well as disrupted former Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren’s speech in 2010 at UC Irvine; Herzallah was arrested both times. Stop Antisemitism has dubbed Herzallah as “The Hateful Heckler.”

Additionally, Herzallah’s speaking event at Northeastern University on April 28 was either canceled or moved off campus, according to Stop Antisemitism. The university did not reply to the Journal’s request for comment as to what exactly happened with the event.

“We applaud Northeastern University and President [Joseph] Aoun for not allowing a dangerous antisemite like Taher Herzallah to appear on their campus,” Stop Antisemitism Executive Director Liora Rez said in a statement to the Journal. “We request UCSD and Chancellor [Pradeep] Khosla affirm their commitment to keeping UCSD’s Jewish students safe on campus and follow in the footsteps of Northeastern.”

Additionally, UCSD campus Jewish groups sent a letter to Khosla echoing the same criticisms of Herzallah as Stop Antisemitism, and noted that Herzallah will be speaking again on May 9 at an event sponsored by UCSD’s Division of Arts and Humanities. “Our Associated Students voted to adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s working definition of antisemitism. The values supported by this speaker would be in clear violation of this resolution,” the letter, which was obtained by the Journal, states. “This university has an obligation to make students feel safe on campus, and as of now, the Jewish community does not feel safe.”
AP Misrepresents Tel Aviv University Report to Blame Israel for Global Antisemitism Rise
Tel Aviv University published a report last month examining the global rise in antisemitism in 2021.

Released on the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day, the report revealed that there had been a sharp increase in antisemitism affecting Jewish communities outside of Israel in 2021.

Specifically, the report linked the escalation of anti-Jewish bigotry to the rise in some countries of the “radical populist right and the anti-Zionist radical left” and COVID-19 conspiracy theories.

In addition, it states:
The conflict between Israel and Hamas in Gaza in May 2021 saw a particularly sharp rise in antisemitic incidents. The conflict exposed an unacceptable reality — when Israel defends itself from rocket attacks against civilian targets, Jews across the world become the target of incitement and hate crimes.

Yet, when the Associated Press (AP) published an article on the report, this was the headline: “Researchers: COVID-19, Israel-Gaza war fueled antisemitism.”

No, AP, the coronavirus pandemic did not fuel antisemitism: COVID-19 conspiracy theories did.

Indeed, the report clearly states that the prominent pandemic-related conspiracy was that “Jews — and Israeli Jews specifically — had engineered the virus and spread it around the world with a clear sinister goal: to be the first to find a cure, sell it to the ailing world, and become rich.”

The AP, however, completely ignores this point.

Instead, the article opens with the following paragraph:
The coronavirus pandemic and Israel’s overwhelming force during the Gaza war helped fuel a worldwide spike in antisemitism last year, Israeli researchers reported on Wednesday.”

At no point did Tel Aviv University researchers allude to or use the term “overwhelming force” in reference to Israel. Rather, the report is clear that there is an “unacceptable reality” whereby Israel cannot defend itself “from rocket attacks against civilian targets” without Jews around the world becoming the target of hate crimes.
A Question for Time Magazine: Is Supporting Assad, Putin, and Hezbollah ‘Social Justice’?
Hadi Nasrallah, a confessed supporter of the US-designated Hezbollah terror group, has openly called for the destruction of the only Jewish state. The Lebanese extremist also backs Syria’s dictator Bashar al-Assad, has cheered on Hamas’ war crimes, defended Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and mourned Iranian terror mastermind Qasem Soleimani.

Nevertheless, in the eyes of TIME Magazine, this “pro-Palestine activist” is part of the worldwide movement for social justice.

An April 29 feature titled, “Twitter Has Helped Build Social Movements Across the World. Now Organizers Fear For Its Future,” deliberately omits Nasrallah’s support for serious human rights violations, while painting criticism of his views as “smear attacks.”

The TIME article, written by freelance journalist Rebecca Chowdhury, outlines perceived concerns regarding harassment and defamation on Twitter following billionaire Elon Musk’s purchase of the social media platform.

In her piece, Chowdhury presents, among others, the views of Black Lives Matter protesters, labor activists, and anti-oppression organizers on the matter. However, she opted to open her article with the following paragraphs:
Pro-Palestine activists have a long history of experiencing smear attacks targeting their places of employment or study. When Hadi Nasrallah tweeted a video of protestors confronting Israeli Ambassador Tzipi Hotovely after a late 2021 speaking engagement, he attracted the attention of David Collier.

Collier has a large following, describes himself as a journalist and anti-semitism [sic] researcher, and has targeted supporters of Palestine [sic] and conflated critiques of Israel with anti-semitism in the past. Collier, who refers to Nasrallah as an “extremist,” began sharing personal images from Nasrallah’s Facebook account. Nasrallah reported these tweets and in response, Twitter locked Collier out of his account until he deleted the tweets that violated Twitter’s rules on sharing private media.

Yet, there is no mention of what these so-called “personal images” of Nasrallah show. This, even though Chowdhury is well-aware of the contents of the photographs in question, having published a screenshot of one of the Facebook posts on her Twitter account.
Pro-Israel Groups Say They Won’t Let UN ‘Kangaroo Court’ Go Unchallenged
A collection of pro-Israel organizations has decided that an unprecedented attack on Israel requires a response.

Israel faces a first-time-ever open-ended U.N. Commission of Inquiry created by the U.N. Human Rights Council, which includes notorious human-rights violators such as Cuba, China, Libya, Somalia and Venezuela. The U.N. General Assembly voted late last year to give the commission a budget of $4.5 million a year, allowing it to hire some 18 full-time staff members, almost the same number as the human-rights office branch of the United Nations covering all of Asia and 60% of the world’s population.

Israel is refusing to engage with the commission. But an alliance of pro-Israel non-governmental organizations (NGOs) says it can play a role, and to that end is submitting troves of documentation to the commission.

“The U.N. Human Rights Council has arranged a kangaroo court where the fix is in, and it makes it impossible for a state like Israel to participate because to do so would undermine its clear sovereign rights and responsibilities,” Professor Anne Bayefsky, head of Human Rights Voices and the Touro Institute on Human Rights and the Holocaust, told JNS.

“NGOs don’t have the same duties and responsibilities as states. Our rationale is to ensure that inquiry members can’t pretend they didn’t know and they didn’t have the data, and that it is Israel’s fault for not participating. We’re undermining their attempt to weave not only a false narrative but a story based on an alleged inability to garner alternative information,” she said.

Manuscript by famed pro-Nazi French author resurfaces after 78 years
It is a rare thing when the story of a book’s publication is even more mysterious than the plot of the novel itself.

But that might be said of “Guerre” (War) by one of France’s most celebrated and controversial literary figures, Louis-Ferdinand Celine, which arrives in bookstores on Thursday, some 78 years after its manuscript disappeared.

Celine’s reputation has somehow survived the fact that he was one of France’s most eager collaborators with the Nazis.

Already a superstar thanks to his debut novel “Journey to the End of the Night” (1932), Celine became one of the most ardent antisemitic propagandists even before France’s occupation.

In June 1944, with the Allies advancing on Paris, the writer was forced to abandon a pile of his manuscripts in his Montmartre apartment.

Celine expected rough treatment, having spent the war carousing with the Gestapo, fingering Jews and foreigners to the authorities and publishing racist pamphlets about Jewish world conspiracies.

For decades, no one knew what happened to his papers, and he angrily accused resistance fighters of burning them.
HATE IN BORO PARK: Swastikas Scrawled On Bus Stop Sign Denouncing Hate On 18th Avenue
Two large swastikas were spray-painted on a bus stop in Boro Park, Thursday morning.

Security camera footage captured the female suspect at around 10:30am committing the hate crime. One of the swastikas were painted over an ad denouncing hate crimes.

Boro Park Shomrim, and NYPD Liaison Rabbi Yanky Meyer were on the scene, and the NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force was investigating the incident.

Following the investigation, Boro Park Shomrim removed the swastikas.
Fury after Melbourne neo-Nazis celebrate Hitler's birthday complete with a swastika cake at a popular pub
A gathering of neo-Nazis who celebrated Adolf Hitler's birthday at popular German beer hall with Nazi salutes and a swastika cake has sparked widespread outrage.

Shocking photos have emerged online from the recent celebrations hosted at The Hof Downtown in Melbourne.

The Docklands venue denied any knowledge of the group's reasons until after the bill was paid and that they made the booking under a fake name.

One photo shows far right-wing leader Tom Sewell, holding a photo of Adolf Hitler at the head of the table as fellow guests at the table perform Nazi salutes.

The photo was posted online with members' faces blurred except Sewell.

Another photo shows a cake decorated with a swastika in icing next to a framed photo of the former German dictator.

The venue has addressed the saga in a lengthy statement on its Facebook page, claiming they weren't aware of the group's intentions until the end of the evening after they paid the bill and were about to leave.

They also denied any knowledge about the cake.
Wall drawings in Rome church recall secret refuge of Jews, anti-fascists
The church of San Gioacchino in Rome is full of frescoes, mosaics, and intricate stained glass windows, but perhaps its real masterpieces are charcoal wall drawings hidden away in its attic.

The drawings were done by one of 35 men - including Jews, anti-fascist Christians, and military defectors - who were hidden in the attic during the Nazi occupation of Rome in World War Two, some for as long as six months.

Father Ezio Marcelli discovered the drawings in 1984, 40 years after allied soldiers liberated Rome from Nazi occupiers in June 1944. He remembered hearing from an older priest that people were hidden in the church during the war and began looking in the parish archives for clues.

"I managed to find this hiding place. We made this extraordinary discovery," he said. "I was very emotional."

"The meaning of what happened here, of people being persecuted, hunted down to be sentenced to death, still has a real significance today," Marcelli said.

Despite his 90 years, Marcelli fearlessly climbs the external spiral staircase leading to the attic.

"We must always be vigilant and careful so that no one can ever again do such evil actions," he said, taking visitors through a secret passage that was once bricked up to conceal the people inside from possible Nazi raids.
KAN promotes new season of 'Tehran' with mock Iranian hack
Kan confused many Twitter followers on Thursday morning, leading them to believe that their account had been hacked by Iranian hackers.

In anticipation of the new season of the Emmy-winning show Tehran's new season, Kan started a marketing campaign where they made it seem like Iranian hackers had hacked the Kan Twitter account and tweeted a tweet every hour for three hours.

The name of the account was changed to The Zionist Channel Kan in both Hebrew and Arabic, and the profile photo was changed to the Iranian flag. The three tweets featured text in both Arabic and Hebrew.

The first tweet was a promotional photo of characters from the show with a caption saying, "We will now allow the enemy's television to air the show this evening which degrades our capital, Tehran, and our holy ground! Today we are destroying one of your electric companies."

The second tweet was a photo of Rita, who is an Israeli-Persian singer, at the Independence Day ceremony on Wednesday night.

"Yesterday, the traitor singer forgot her sacred land and lit a torch for the Zionists, and this evening, the show that attacks our Tehran," was written in the caption. "You won't have an escape route."

Ceramic vessels from Jerusalem may have been ancient grenades - study
Previously thought to have been used possibly as beer drinking vessels, or containers for oil or medicines, a recent study of sphero-conical ceramic containers from 11th-12 century Jerusalem currently exhibited in various museums suggests that they may actually have been used as hand grenades, according to a recent study in PLOS ONE.

And indeed, used locally produced explosives rather than material imported from China as previously thought. According to a press release from Griffith University in Queensland, Australia, the research led by Associate Professor Carney Matheson confirmed that while some of the vessels did contain residues of oils and medicines, and others contained scented oils residue, a new analysis revealed that some also contain flammable and probably explosive material that could indicate their use as ancient hand grenades.

“This research has shown the diverse use of these unique ceramic vessels which include ancient explosive devices,” he said in the press release. “These vessels have been reported during the time of the Crusades as grenades thrown against Crusader strongholds producing loud noises and bright flashes of light.”

The press release noted that Matheson, from Griffith’s Australian Research Centre for Human Evolution, said the explosive material he analyzed within the vessels more notably suggested that there may have been a locally developed ancient explosive.

He said that some researchers have theorized that the vessels held a black powder from an explosive invented in ancient China and known to have been introduced into the Middle East and Europe by the 13th century.
Uncovering British man who stopped 1921 Jaffa riots

An American-illustrated declaration of the Zionist dream
Amid the years leading up to the dramatic founding of the State of Israel, there is a 1920 illustration that has been long forgotten.

American newspapers in the 19th century always featured stories by noted individuals urging the return of the Jews to their homeland in Palestine. Herzl’s dream for the Jewish homeland was often described in the press, and included an outstanding photograph of the “father of modern Zionism” in various US newspapers after the First Zionist Congress in 1897. In the first decade of the 20th century, the early filmmakers made movies that captured the spirit of the Jewish people returning to their ancestral homeland.

Then, in 1912, a major development in the American Zionist movement occurred. Justice Louis D. Brandeis became the leader of the Federation of American Zionists. The goal of the American Zionists was to “create the Jewish national home in Palestine.”

The commitment of American Jewry to this movement expressed itself via the 200,000 paid members of the Federation of American Zionists by the time World War I broke out. The belief in the “home revived” was raised by the inspired Zionist members.

As Prof. Jonathan Sarna, a leading scholar of American Jewish history has pointed out: “The war had introduced mass Jewish philanthropy in the US, and countless rank-and-file Jews gave money in response to slick advertising by the Joint Distribution Committee and others. The Zionists paid attention.”

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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 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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