Tuesday, July 26, 2022

From Ian:

Kassy Dillon: Ben Shapiro at Temple Mount: Jews face apartheid there
On Sunday afternoon, Ben Shapiro, the editor emeritus of The Daily Wire, ascended to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem to pray with his parents and a group of followers.

Shapiro’s first visit to the Temple Mount was during the holiday of Sukkot back in October 2019. That visit was cut short after someone in his group was found to be carrying a willow branch in his pocket as a mitzvah for the last day of Sukkot, leading to the group’s removal from the holy site.

While waiting for security to clear the group to enter the complex this time around, Shapiro told JNS that he hoped to be permitted to complete the tour this time.

“Hopefully, we actually make it all the way around the outside of the compound this time,” he said. “I wish we could all daven (‘pray’) openly there—the freest thing to do. The only place that Israel is an apartheid state is only on Har HaBayit [the Temple Mount]. That’s the only place.”

While on the complex, Shapiro and his group recited afternoon prayers, and his father said Kaddish for his grandmother, who passed away less than a year ago. During prayers, the group was repeatedly interrupted by Israeli police, who rushed them through their visit.

Shapiro’s group was escorted by five Israeli police officers with one Jordanian Waqf guard watching at a distance.

According to Melissa Jane Kronfeld, founder of High on the Har, a group that prays daily on the Temple Mount, the police presence is typical as protection for groups with religious Jews.

“The Israeli police protects us from Islamic extremists, for which we are grateful,” she said, citing the riots in June as an example.
David Singer: 100 years ago, the Mandate for Palestine Saga began
However the arrival of Abdullah, a member of the Hashemite dynasty, in Transjordan on 21 November 1920 accompanied by a band of armed troops en route to help his brother Faisal fight the French to retain Faisal’s crown in Syria – resulted in:
- Great Britain - at the Cairo Conference held on 12 March 1921 – stopping Abdullah by creating the Emirate of Transjordan for Abdullah in 78% of Mandatory Palestine East of the Jordan River.-The Emirate remained part of the Mandate until granted independence by Great Britain in 1946 – changing its name to the Hashemite Kingdom of Transjordan.
- Article 25 being inserted into the Mandate document on 24 July 1922 - restricting the right of the Jewish people to reconstitute the Jewish National Home in 22% of Mandatory Palestine West of the Jordan River
- The Council of the League of Nations approving these changed arrangements on 16 September 1922.

These changes have been preserved until today under article 80 of the United Nations Charter.

The United Nations failure to observe the terms of its own Charter has been the greatest obstacle to achieving the Mandate-contemplated two-state solution.

That two-state solution, as opposed to the one espoused by Biden, has however become politically attainable following a detailed plan for its creation in an article dated 8 June - written by Ali Shihabi a close confidante of Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman the next King of Saudi Arabia – and published in Al-Arabiya News –owned by the Saudi Royal Family.

Successful negotiations between Israel and Jordan to implement Shihabi’s plan would result in:
- The merger of Mandate territory located East and West of the Jordan River into one Arab State and the recognition of a Jewish State in the remaining Mandate territory West of the Jordan River including significant swathes of Judea and Samaria.
- The last chapter of the Mandate saga begun on 24 July 1922 is on the diplomatic horizon.
Jonathan S. Tobin: Is the Russian threat to the Jewish Agency a return to Soviet oppression?
If you’re old enough to remember the darkest days of the movement to free Soviet Jewry, the news last week that the Russian Justice Ministry has asked a court to close down the operations of the Jewish Agency in Israel in that country seems ominously familiar. In the Soviet era, the Communist regime wasn’t just preventing Jews from leaving. It was, as had been the case since the Bolshevik coup in 1917, openly anti-Semitic. Indeed, the Communists were even more oppressive than their tsarist predecessors in terms of suppressing Jewish life and the practice of Judaism.

The Russian move against the Jewish Agency would make it much harder for those Jews who want to leave a country that has become an international pariah due to its invasion of Ukraine. It also could be a harbinger of a return to the Jew-hatred that was so much a feature of life in the Eastern European monolith prior to the breakup of the Soviet Union.

The reason for this seems to be an effort to get Israel to return to a stance of neutrality in the war Russia launched on Ukraine in late February. That’s a position the Jewish state changed after pressure from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, the West and many Israeli citizens, who all thought that Israel needed to side with the victims.

These worries about Russia and anti-Semitism were supposed to be buried in the past.

After the collapse of the Soviet Union, those Jews who remained were in a country that embraced an authoritarian government led by Vladimir Putin, an ex-KGB agent. Putin was a thug determined to crush anyone who opposed him and his corrupt regime. He was also obsessed with reversing the verdict of history—whereby Russia had been demoted to the status of a second-rate power—and sought to recreate the old Soviet and tsarist empires.

Yet unlike the Communists and the tsars, Putin was seemingly immune to the virus of anti-Semitism. Jewish life in his Russia was allowed to thrive with synagogues, schools and community centers, many of which opened and were built brand-new under his watch.

Equally important, Russia has generally good, albeit complicated, relations with the State of Israel. On the one hand, Putin was happy to cultivate Israeli leaders and to regard the vast number of Israelis with ties to Russia as part of his country’s Diaspora, rather than despised émigrés. Though Putin’s Russia was not the engine driving anti-Zionism and anti-Israel terrorism in the Third World the way the Communist government had been, it also regarded some of the Jewish state’s worst enemies, such as Iran and Syria, as allies. His equivocal stance on the Iranian nuclear threat, which may have had more to do with his desire to annoy the United States whenever possible, was also problematic.

Russian move against Jewish Agency threatens Israel relations
Former ambassador to Russia and Ukraine Zvi Magen joins Calev to break down Russia's attempts to close the Jewish Agency.

Is history repeating itself with Russia's targeting of Jewish Agency?

A BDS initiative Jewish institutions and investors must fight
Morningstar’s de facto BDS should be given priority within the general fight against BDS because of the company’s huge power in the investment world. ESG investing accounts for $17 trillion of investments in 2022, a huge proportion of the $45 billion total of US stocks. Almost all Americans are influenced by ESG ratings whether it be in their pension funds, mutual funds or personal portfolios. Much of the screening for ESG, is being done by Morningstar, through its subsidiary Sustainalytics, and MSCI. In other words, these two companies direct where this money goes. As one top investment bank explained, “Ignore the noise… it is important to focus your efforts on the key providers most commonly used by investors — MSCI and Sustainalytics. Understand which factors might get you screened out…business involvement screens [are vital to] understand which controversial business involvement will get you flagged.” Once flagged, the $17 trillion investment pool will exclude your firm or locale. Due to the size of the problem, critics brought the issue to the Illinois Investment Policy Board (IIPB). The IIPB is the entity authorized by the state of Illinois to ensure that state investments accord with Illinois’s anti-BDS legislation. In response, Morningstar issued the report.

Morningstar’s May 2022 report, should worry the Jewish community and investors, because it denies a BDS policy while clearly demonstrating that BDS is being conducted. In the report’s cover letter, the CEO and Chairman say that “We stated then — and reaffirm today — that neither Morningstar nor Sustainalytics supports the anti-Israel BDS campaign. But the report nonetheless notes that, “Sustainalytics employees acknowledged that some clients may use [Sustainalytic’s] GSS [Global Standards Screening]as a so called ‘do not invest’ list in order to comply with internal policies. One employee explained that the Sustainalytics GSS ratings sometimes functions as a de facto divestment list in the Netherlands — i.e., the divestment lists published in the Dutch market almost perfectly mirror the Sustainalytics rankings… Over the last decade, these sort of internal investment policies have become common in the United States as well.” The report also describes how Morningstar encouraged companies to stop doing business with Israel under the guise of “engagement” so as not to find themselves divested from portfolios. It also shows how the Morningstar rates Israel with five high-risk factors unlike other conflict zone in the world which are rated with at most four. In addition, it admits that 70% of all Morningstar’s tags on conflict zones relate to Israel. Despite documenting all of these actions, Morningstar’s report purports to say that nothing wrong is going on. In other words, without a challenge Morningstar will continue to practice BDS while saying it is not.

This is a fight the pro-Israel community, Israel and investors cannot afford to lose. According to a recent Pew survey, only 2% of Americans strongly support BDS, yet Morningstar is screening for BDS on behalf of all investors. In fact, going further, they even screen out non-Israeli companies that simply sell products to Israel on the basis that these products might be retrofitted to somehow cause harm. Imagine if Morningstar encouraged a boycott of companies of any other ethnic group as well as those that sell products to that said ethnic group on behalf of 2% of Americans. Currently the majority of pro-Israel individuals and foundations are likely using Morningstar for ESG investments whether they are aware of it or not and thus unwittingly boycotting Israel. We must call Morningstar to account by whatever means necessary and make sure that in the interim we stop indirectly contributing to boycotting Israel ourselves.
Ilhan's country
Omar would be no ordinary state lawmaker, just as she had been no ordinary City Hall staffer. In August of 2017 she was on the cover of Time magazine, which declared her to be part of a group of “women who are changing the world.” She had already made her first Daily Show appearance that July.

Given the sharply critical treatment of the Twin Cities Somali American community in her memoir, it is perhaps unsurprising that Omar soon invested what little political capital she had in trying to prevent state funds from flowing to a coalition of local Somali organizations. In 2017, Omar introduced a bill that effectively opposed a package for Somali cultural and arts funding that had been making its way through the Republican-controlled House and Senate—her alternative measure would only have funded the Somali American Museum in Minneapolis. Omar refused to work toward a compromise; instead she had an allied member of the state Senate shift half of the bill’s total funding to the museum. She remained intransigent to the end, opposing all nonmuseum funding even when the bill passed both houses and made it to conference committee, one of the final steps of the legislative process. “We told the committee chair: This is something the Somali community wants, rather than what representative Omar wants,” recalled Shep Harris in the summer of 2020, a lobbyist who worked on behalf of a coalition of Somali communal organizations to advocate for the larger funding bill, and who is now the Democratic mayor of Golden Valley, a suburb of Minneapolis.

To an outside observer, it would seem petty, irrational, or even self-destructive to hold up needed funds earmarked for one’s own community. But Ilhan Omar knew better than her doubters: At that embryonic point in her legislative career, the political benefit of a petty and inexplicable act of obstructionism outweighed its costs. It showed a comfort with standing alone, a core unpredictability—and, given her husband Ahmed Hirsi’s tumultuous history with Kajoog, which was slated to receive funding from the original bill, a possible willingness to act on personal and political grudges.

But Omar knew better than her doubters: At that embryonic point in her legislative career, the political benefit of a petty and inexplicable act of obstructionism outweighed its costs.

During her sole term in St. Paul, Omar would become notable for things she did far away from Minnesota. In late 2016, shortly before taking office, she traveled to Somalia with Ahmed Hirsi and met with president Hassan Sheikh. That February, Omar and Hirsi were keynote speakers at a rally celebrating the Somali parliament and senate’s selection of a former New York State bureaucrat named Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, nicknamed Farmaajo, as the country’s president. Shortly after that, in early March of 2017, Omar’s brother-in-law Mohammed Keynan was named as permanent secretary to Hassan Ali Khayre, a former official with the Norwegian Refugee Council who Farmaajo appointed as his prime minister.

Even as a Minnesota state representative Omar had close connections at the highest levels of Somalia’s political system. But she boasted even more impressive contacts. Omar had a closed-door meeting with the autocratic Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan in New York in the fall of 2017, long before she was in Congress.
Maryland CAIR chapter opposes IHRA definition of antisemitism
The Maryland chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) called on members of the Montgomery County Council on Sunday to oppose the county's resolution to formally adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Association's (IHRA) definition of antisemitism.

Montgomery County is Maryland's most populous region, encompassing the heavily Jewish town of Silver Spring as well as several heavily populated places in the Baltimore-Washington metropolitan area.

"IHRA’s definition is controversial and ambiguous in several respects and leaves too much room for misinterpretation and abuse of free speech rights."
CAIR Maryland's director Zainab Chaudry

The IHRA definition reads as follows: “Antisemitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.”

Connection to Jewish Voice for Peace
The IHRA provides examples of antisemitism which CAIR Maryland takes issue with, citing Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) as another group that unequivocally opposes the IHRA definition. As is in line with both groups' core values, they object to the examples having to do with Israel. Specifically, CAIR and JVP do not agree that:
- Drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis
- Using the symbols and images associated with classic antisemitism (e.g., claims of Jews killing Jesus or blood libel) to characterize Israel or Israelis
- Holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel

Jewish Voice for Peace, as quoted on CAIR Maryland's website, claims that these statements pose "a direct censorship threat to Palestinians and Palestinian rights advocates. It can easily be used as a censorship tool that falsely conflates attempts to hold the Israeli government accountable with antisemitism."

AIPAC-funded Michigan Democrat may overthrow Jewish political dynasty
The Democratic primary next week in Michigan’s newly redrawn 11th District could end a four-decade Jewish political dynasty — and spending by the country’s biggest pro-Israel lobby is playing a significant role.

Because of redistricting, the race pits two incumbent Democrats against each other: Representative Andy Levin, a Jewish Democrat who favors conditioning aid to Israel and counts some of Congress’s most outspoken Israel critics as his friends, and Representative Haley Stevens, a non-Jewish centrist whose Israel commitments lie mainly in assuring its military security.

Stevens has been the recipient of millions of dollars in outside funding far from United Democracy Project, the political action committee launched last year by AIPAC, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. She is polling over 20 points ahead of Levin.

AIPAC broke from 70 years of studious avoidance of electoral politics when it launched the PAC, in a sign that the group no longer believed that its traditional activities were sufficient to guarantee that its vision of Israel support would prevail in Congress.

Now, the group is testing its theory in multiple primaries where progressive candidates are seen as vulnerable. Through Sunday, AIPAC’s PAC had spent $3,178,469 supporting Stevens’ candidacy and another $174,437 opposing Levin’s, according to federal election data collected by Open Secrets, a website that tracks political spending. AIPAC’s giving has made up nearly 60% of outside spending on behalf of Stevens, according to federal data.

Education Department Investigates Allegations USC Ignored Anti-Semitic Harassment
The Education Department formally launched an investigation on Tuesday into allegations the University of Southern California (USC) fomented "a hostile environment of anti-Semitism" on its campus that forced a Jewish student government official to resign from her position.

The Education Department’s Office of Civil Rights will conduct an independent investigation into allegations made by the Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law alleging that USC ignored instances of anti-Semitic harassment targeting a student leader named Rose Ritch—including harassment on social media which labeled her "trash" and a "Zionist a**."

The formal probe into USC indicates the Education Department had found evidence the allegations are warranted and deserve further investigation by the federal government, according to the Brandeis Center, a legal advocacy group that combats anti-Semitism on college campuses.

The investigation comes amid multiple anti-Semitic scandals at USC and other American colleges, where attacks on Jewish students are rising at a historic rate. In addition to the campaign against Ritch, USC found itself in hot water earlier this year when it was accused of ignoring a series of threatening and anti-Semitic tweets from a graduate student, which included, "I want to kill every mother fucking Zionist" and "Zionists are going to fucking pay." The Education Department also is investigating similar issues at the University of Illinois and Brooklyn College.

"It is significant that OCR is opening an investigation into Rose Ritch's case because it concerns the form of anti-Semitism that is prevalent on campuses today across the country," Denise Katz-Prober, a lead attorney at the Brandeis Center, told the Washington Free Beacon.

"This form of anti-Semitism targets and seeks to marginalize and exclude Jewish students on the basis of their Jewish ethnic identity which is connected to Israel," Katz-Prober said. "Unfortunately, since filing this complaint, this problem has become increasingly common on other campuses. But universities too often fail to recognize and properly and promptly respond to this form of anti-Semitic discrimination. And that is what happened in Rose Ritch’s case."
Norway’s new labeling policy is a double standard against Jews - opinion
On Friday, June 10th, Norway announced that “foodstuffs originating in areas occupied by Israel must be marked with the area from which the product comes, and that it comes from an Israeli settlement if that is the case.”

In building its case for this new ruling, the government referred to a European Union ruling from 2019. However, this is a measure that the government-leading Labor party “Arbeiderpartiet” and the Foreign Minister Anniken Huitfeldt have advocated for years. Already in 2017, a proposal for such discriminatory labeling was voted down after a 64-37 vote in Norway’s Parliament. In 2020, they tried again, but the proposal failed to pass once more. Labor’s coalition partner, the Center Party “Senterpartiet,” has voted against the labeling both times but now has given in to pressure to accept the measure.

The labeling of goods from Judea and Samaria is reprehensible, primarily because of its double standard, as Norway has never adopted a similar ruling for any other disputed areas around the world.

In fact, Norway has allowed the state-owned Telenor company to offer services to settlers in the Nagorno-Karabakh region which is claimed by both Azerbaijan and Armenia. Norway also allows Turkish Airlines, which transports settlers in and out of Northern Cyprus daily, to operate out of Norwegian airports. Norway does not discourage economic relations with the large Swedish company Trelleborg, which has supplied equipment for water supplies to Northern Cyprus. Norway is not asking its industry companies to stop cooperation with the German industrial giant Siemens, which supplies wind energy to Western Sahara.

What about all the other 150 land and sea areas that are disputed, not only in Africa and Asia, but also in Europe? Should Norway start labeling these goods as well? Should Norwegian governments begin to discourage economic relations with all disputed areas that we believe are doing something wrong?
‘From the River to the Sea’ and Beyond: 5 Trending ‘Palestinian Chants’ and Their Unreported Incitement to Genocide
Recently, media outlets have accused Israel of curtailing freedom of speech by banning pro-Palestinian chants in Jerusalem. However, rather than quoting the actual chants, journalists simply referred to these slogans as “Palestinian chants,” “anti-Israeli slogans,” or even “anti-colonial chants.”

Hence, HonestReporting has compiled and translated a list of oft-heard Palestinian slogans, many of which have been co-opted by anti-Israel campaigners in the West:

1. “From the Water to the Water, Palestine Is Arab.”
The anti-Israel movement’s favorite slogan, “From the river to the sea, Palestine [sic] will be free,” is well known to Western audiences. However, according to some sources, “Min el-maiyeh lel mayieh, Falasteen Arabiya” preceded the English-language catchphrase.

2. “With Spirit and Blood We Will Redeem You, Oh Al-Aqsa.”
Baseless accusations of Israeli threats to the Al-Aqsa Mosque, Islam’s third-holiest site built on the ruins of the ancient Jewish Temple in Jerusalem’s Old City, have long been a rallying call for Palestinian terrorism. For example, the 1929 Hebron massacre, in which Arabs murdered 67 Jewish inhabitants of the city, was sparked by rumors that Jews were planning to seize control of the mosque.

3. “Jews, Remember Khaybar, the Army of Muhammad Is Returning.”
The history of the Islamic battle cry “Khaybar Khaybar, ya yahud, Jaish Muhammad, sa yahud” can be traced back to a seventh-century confrontation between Muhammad’s army and Jewish tribes in the Arabian Peninsula. After the Muslim conquerors attacked and overran the oasis of Khaybar, they famously massacred the men and sold their wives and children into slavery.

4. “Put the Sword Against the Sword, We Are the Men of Mohammed Deif.”
The intentions of Hamas, which has ruled the Gaza Strip with an iron Islamist fist since seizing control of the enclave in 2007, are well-documented. In accordance with its antisemitic founding charter, Hamas’ foremost objective is to “obliterate” the only Jewish state and “raise the banner of Allah over every inch of [British Mandatory] Palestine.”

Acting as the commander of the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas’ so-called military wing, Mohammed Deif is tasked with turning this objective into reality. Accordingly, the arch-terrorist has been on Israel’s most-wanted list for over a quarter century due to his role in numerous deadly attacks.

5. “Oh Qassam, Oh Friend, Strike a Blow at Tel Aviv.”
The chant “Ya Qassam ya habib, odrob odrob Tel Aviv” likewise alludes to the US-designated terror group’s military wing, and calls on Hamas to fire missiles at Israel’s most densely-populated cities. Last year, 13 civilians, including two children, were killed in Israel by rockets fired from Gaza.

Each missile fired at civilians constitutes a war crime. And with many rockets manufactured, stored, transported through, and launched from predominantly urban areas, effectively using Gaza’s population as a collective human shield, Hamas commits additional war crimes every time it launches a rocket.
UK Paper Attacks Biden for Supporting Israel and Rejecting Lie of ‘Apartheid’
Though Hall notes Israel’s rejection of the charge, he omits that it was also categorically rejected by leading democracies, such as the US, UK, Germany, France, Austria, the Czech Republic, Australia, Ireland, Canada, and The Netherlands. In fact, we’re unaware of any democratic country that issued official statements in support of Amnesty’s allegation.

In order to provide background, Hall then cites the Apartheid Convention, adopted by the UN General Assembly in 1973, which includes “inhuman acts committed for the purpose of establishing and maintaining domination by one racial group of persons over any other racial group of persons and systematically oppressing them.”

First, in addition to the inconvenient fact that over 20% of Israel’s population are Arab, and enjoy all the political rights that Jews enjoy, it’s absurd to present Israeli Jews — who hail from North and South America, Africa, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia — as a single monochromatic race. As Justin Danilewitz observed: “The diverse melting pot of modern Israel belies Amnesty’s caricatured depiction of Jews as a homogeneous group of [white] European colonizers.”

Moreover, any such reduction of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as one predicated upon race is farcical.

For starters, it ignores the fact that Israeli control of the West Bank is rooted in the state’s defensive actions in response to the 1967 Arab war of annihilation, not some sinister Jewish desire for “racial domination.”

It of course also omits Israeli efforts to relinquish their control of the disputed territories, such as multiple Israeli peace offers, rejected by Palestinian leaders, that would have granted Palestinians, for the first time in history, their own state, as well as Israel’s complete withdrawal from Gaza in 2005 and the subsequent rise to power in the territory of Hamas — an antisemitic extremist group that seeks the Jewish state’s destruction. The “apartheid” smear, like so much of what passes for informed comment about Israel, elides such inconvenient facts, thus erasing Palestinian agency.

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is a territorial dispute, one born of, and continually fueled by, Palestinian terror, antisemitism and rejectionism, not — as those like the Indy journalist like to project from the American experience — a race-based civil rights struggle. Even if you fault Israel for making decisions that are inimical to a two state solution, to impute to Israeli Jews the desire for “racial domination,” which is the basis of the “apartheid” smear, is illogical, counter-factual, and ahistorical.

Finally, here’s a good analysis of the Soviet origins of the “apartheid” charge, and other antisemitic smears, against Israel.
BBC News ignores Gaza maritime weapons smuggling as usual
BBC reporting on Israel’s naval blockade of the Gaza Strip has followed the same template for years:
1. Produce occasional reporting highlighting the difficulties of Gaza fishermen.
2. Portray the reason for the blockade exclusively as something that ‘Israel says’ is the case while disregarding the agreements which permit Israel to take action against suspect vessels.
3. Ignore the stories which would help clarify to BBC audiences why the naval blockade is necessary.

Another such story emerged on July 24th when Israeli naval forces prevented a smuggling operation from Egypt to the Gaza Strip. Local media reported the incident:
“According to a statement from the Israel Defense Forces, the vessel set sail overnight from the Sinai Peninsula through the Mediterranean Sea toward Gaza, entering a prohibited area off the coast of the southern part of the Strip.

“Navy soldiers called via loudspeakers to [the vessel], and when it did not respond to the calls, the soldiers fired in accordance with the open-fire policy,” the IDF said.

Footage shared on social media showed smoke rising from the vessel.

According to the IDF and Palestinian media reports, the suspects aboard the boat managed to swim ashore.

The IDF said “equipment” intended for Hamas was found aboard the vessel, without elaborating. An unsourced Ynet news site report said the military believed the boat was transporting ammunition and anti-tank missiles.”
StandWithUs Files Amicus Brief Countering Anti-Israel Bias and Antisemitism in the Clifton, NJ Board
The StandWithUs Saidoff Legal Department proudly announces its filing of an amicus brief on July 25, 2022, in support of Complainant-Appellant Elisabeth Schwartz, to help combat inflammatory anti-Israel and antisemitic rhetoric by members of the Clifton Board of Education in Clifton, New Jersey.

StandWithUs’ brief responds to a school board incident that occurred in May 2021 during the war between Israel and Hamas. According to the original filing and previous media coverage, Clifton Board of Education commissioners Fahim K Abedrabbo and Feras Awwad, the Respondents, used their school board platform to promote various anti-Israel tropes and an antisemitic conspiracy theory. This occurred as Jews across America were facing physical violence that was driven by similarly extreme and dehumanizing narratives targeting Israel. In its brief, StandWithUs calls upon the New Jersey Appellate Division to overturn the State of New Jersey’s School Ethics Commission’s dismissal of Ms. Schwartz’s complaint alleging violations of school ethics by the Respondents.

Furthermore, complainant-Appellant Schwartz is the aunt of Ezra Schwartz, an 18-year-old Jewish American student who was murdered in a Palestinian terrorist attack in 2018. This tragedy renders Ms. Schwartz uniquely positioned to convey how school board members’ inflammatory anti-Israel and antisemitic rhetoric against Jews and Israelis in general can lead to inciting hatred within the district. Ms. Schwartz is represented by Susan Tuchman, Director of the Zionist Organization of America’s Center for Law and Justice, and Jeffrey Schreiber, a member of the firm of Meister Seelig & Fein LLP. The complaint claims that by acting outside the scope of their official duties and potentially compromising the public trust, Respondents violated New Jersey’s School Ethics Act.

“The State of New Jersey has an obligation to ensure that members of local school boards lawfully and ethically use their platform to create an unbiased educational environment for all students in their district,” said Roz Rothstein, CEO of StandWithUs. “Instead, Respondents used their official platforms to promote bias and hate. There is no legitimate place for anti-Israel and antisemitic rhetoric by school board members at public meetings. We hope that the Appellate Division will restore justice to Elisabeth Schwartz and the broader Jewish and Israeli American constituency in New Jersey by overturning the prior decision and giving this case the proper ethical review it deserves.”
‘Hotter than an oven’: Rhode Island bar apologizes for online joke about Anne Frank
A Rhode Island sports bar apologized on Monday after sharing a meme on Facebook making light of Anne Frank’s death at the hand of the Nazis.

“It’s hotter than an oven out there… and I should know,” read the Atlantic Sports and Bar’s Friday post over a picture of teenage German-Dutch diarist Anne Frank, who was killed by the Nazis in 1945. The post was seeking to make a joke about the heatwave rolling through Rhode Island.

The restaurant came under immediate criticism from social media users, some of whom called for a boycott of the restaurant until it issued an apology.

“Wow a racist pit,” wrote Facebook user Amy Ann on an unrelated post on the restaurant’s page. “Don’t patronize until they apologize.”

The local ABC news affiliate said the restaurant took down the post several hours after publishing it and claimed that the employee behind it was not aware of who Anne Frank was.

Published in 1947, “The Diary of Anne Frank” remains one of the most widely read books on the Holocaust to this day and has been translated to over 70 languages.

Two days after taking it down, the restaurant issued an apology saying that the post was “poorly thought out and we realize that it was incredibly inappropriate and does not reflect our values as members of our community.

“There is no excuse for the sharing of this post, and there is nothing we can do to rectify it, all we can do now is offer our deepest apology to those who were rightfully hurt by our actions. The Atlantic Restaurant prides itself on being a tolerant, inclusive and safe space for all people.”

Anne Frank diary-burning communist cult head arrested
The leader of a revolutionary Black supremacist communist cult that previously burned Anne Frank's diary has been arrested for kidnapping, imprisonment and forced sodomy after a member of the commune was found dead at the group's home in Fayetteville, Georgia last Tuesday. The arrest of Gazi Kodzo
Augustus Romain, also known as Gazi Kodzo, "commander" of Black Hammer, was arrested by Fayetteville Police along with another group leader, Xavier Rushin, also known as Colonel Keno.

The Black Hammer leaders were charged with multiple crimes — Romain was alleged to have committed aggravated sodomy, multiple counts of conspiracy to commit a felony, criminal street gang activity, and was party to false imprisonment, kidnapping, and aggravated assault.

Last Tuesday, Fayetteville police had received a call from someone claiming that they had been kidnapped. The authorities traced the call to the Black Hammer communal house.

The occupants were evacuated except for one person, and after a standoff, a bomb disposal robot was sent into the building, police said. Amonte Ammons, 18 — who Black Hammer called "AP," their Defense Minister — was found dead of a self-inflicted gunshot.
GMP tells CAA it lost track of antisemitic crime data due to new IT system and did not even make Mayor Andy Burnham aware
Greater Manchester Police has told Campaign Against Antisemitism that it has lost track of antisemitic crime data due to the installation of a new IT system.

Andy Burnham, the Mayor of Greater Manchester, is in charge of police governance for the city, but in correspondence with his office, we discovered that the police force has yet to provide explanations to him for the scandal. We are grateful to the Mayor for his help.

We have now reported Greater Manchester Police to the Information Commissioner’s Office and appointed lawyers.

Greater Manchester Police serves Britain’s third largest city, which is home to the second largest Jewish community in the country. Its data on antisemitic hate crimes is therefore essential to understanding the nature of antisemitic crime and holding police forces accountable for their performance.

Following requests from us from as long ago as April 2021 for data regarding antisemitic crimes and non-criminal antisemitic incidents recorded by Greater Manchester Police for every month in 2018, 2019 and 2020 — which is data that all other police forces in the country hold and have provided to us and the Home Office — the force has consistently failed to provide the data, apparently because it would take days to extract it from its computers. In other words, it appears to have lost track of this data.

Paradoxically, while insisting that the data requested was not easily retrievable, subsequent to our request the force did publish part of the data on its website. However, a substantial amount of data remains missing. The problem remains so severe that it is the only police force in the UK to have been unable to meet minimum data requirements set by the Home Office.

This problem does not affect antisemitic hate crime alone: even the Home Office’s national crime statistics have, for several years until this year, omitted data from one of the country’s largest police forces.
Israel to host French Super Cup soccer match with Messi, Neymar
The French Super Cup between Paris Saint-Germain FC (PSG) and FC Nantes is scheduled to be held next week at the Bloomfield Stadium in Tel Aviv.

Argentinian soccer star Lionel Messi will arrive with PSG. He last visited Israel in 2019 with the Argentinian national team in a friendly match against Uruguay.

Brazilian PSG star Neymar da Silva Santos Júnior, better known as Neymar, will also arrive in Israel for the match.

Meanwhile, Tottenham Hotspur will face Roma in Israel on the evening of July 30 at the Sammy Ofer Stadium in Haifa. The game is part of the I-Tech Cup, which will feature local technologies.
Israeli Soccer Star Manor Solomon Poised to Make Debut in England’s Elite Premier League
One of Israel’s most highly-tipped soccer players is set to make his debut in England’s elite Premier League competition when the new season begins on Aug. 6.

23-year-old Manor Solomon’s signing by newly-promoted west London side Fulham was announced on Monday after weeks of uncertain negotiations. Solomon previously played for top Ukrainian side Shakhtar Donetsk until the Russian invasion in February, and has not played domestic soccer competitively since.

An attacking midfield player on the left-wing, Solomon has earned a reputation for getting himself into dangerous positions in the opposing team’s half, chalking up nine goals and one assist during Shakhtar’s last full season in the Ukrainian league in 2020-21 and excelling in one-on-one contests with defenders.

Solomon has also distinguished himself as part of Israel’s national team, having made his debut in 2017 when he was just 16. During the last two years, Solomon has found the net for Israel on several critical occasions, among them the sole goal in a 1-0 UEFA Nations League victory over Scotland in Nov. 2020. Last month, Solomon turned around a 1-0 deficit in a match between Israel and Albania, scoring two goals in the space of 16 minutes to win the game.
Gold medal winner shares experience at 21st Maccabiah games

Asian Investors Bet on Haifa as Israel Draws Closer to Arab Gulf
The city of Haifa is set to become an increasingly significant east Mediterranean shipping hub, with Chinese and Indian firms buying into its ports as Israel normalizes ties with its Gulf Arab neighbors under a US diplomatic push.

Earlier this month, as US President Joe Biden visited the Middle East, India’s largest port developer Adani Ports and Israeli minority partner Gadot agreed to buy Haifa Port for 4.1 billion shekels ($1.18 billion).

Its founder, Asia’s richest man Gautam Adani, said via Twitter that the deal was of “immense strategic and historical significance,” and the company is betting the port will become a link to Europe and create new trade lanes with Asia.

A year before, Chinese rival Shanghai International Port Group (SIPG) said it saw the same potential when it inaugurated its 5.5 billion shekel Bay Port container shipping terminal right next door.

Their convergence on Haifa touches on a broader contest between Chinese, Indian and US interests, said Carice Witte, executive director of SIGNAL, an Israeli policy group that specializes in China-Israel relations.

“When you see China at a port in Haifa, Haifa now becomes an incredibly important strategic point,” she said. “Whereas maybe in the past it was not perceived that way, Israel in general and Haifa very specifically – its relevance as a piece on the puzzle has changed.”
Who are the Top 50 Most Influential Jews of 2022? Vote now!
Who do you think are the Top 50 Most Influential Jews of 2022 in Israel and around the world?

Every year, The Jerusalem Post lists those most influential in our annual Rosh Hashanah magazine and our website. See previous years:
Top 50 Most Influential Jews 2021
Top 50 Most Influential Jews 2020

This year, the decision is in your hands.

Get those keyboards clicking and head on down to the comments below to vote: Who do you think deserves to make the cut in this year's list of Top 50 Most Influential Jews?
Uri Orlev, acclaimed author of children’s Holocaust books, dies at 91
Israeli author Uri Orlev, whose dozens of books were renowned for their depiction of his early life during the Holocaust and through the establishment of the State of Israel, died Tuesday aged 91.

Orlev also translated works of Polish literature into Hebrew.

Prime Minister Yair Lapid wrote that Orlev was “one of the greatest writers of children’s books.”

“Our children grew up on him. His memories of the Holocaust and the establishment of the state taught them about our history,” he said. His legacy, Lapid wrote, “will remain with us forever.”

Culture and Sports Minister Chili Tropper said that Orlev’s books “manage to depict his youth in the Holocaust and his immigration to the country and to make the difficulty accessible to children and teenagers through his unique writing.”

Orlev was born in 1931 in Warsaw as Jerzy Henryk Orlowski. His mother was killed by the Nazis and his father taken captive by the Russians.

Together with his brother, Orlev was hidden by a family member in the Warsaw Ghetto but was eventually caught by the Germans and sent to the Bergen-Belsen death camp. Two years later the camp was liberated by the British. Orlev and his brother made their way to Israel, where he worked in a cowshed in Kibbutz Ginegar. His father, who survived the war, arrived in Israel in 1954.

CFI lead communal tributes to David Trimble
The Conservative Friends of Israel organisation have led the communal tributes to David Trimble, Northern Ireland’s former First Minister, following his death, aged 77.

Lord Trimble – who was widely hailed as a true friend of Israel – was a parliamentary officer with CFI, who regularly spoke out in defence of the Jewish State in front of world leaders.

His death on Monday was announced by the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP), the party he led into a historic power-sharing arrangement with nationalists and republicans in Northern Ireland.

In a tribute posted on social media CFI said:”Few people have had such a constant support for Israel.”

They added Trimble’s “invaluable insights and experience” had been “cherished” throughout his involvement with the organisation.

“His contribution to trying to secure peace at home and in the Middle East speaks for itself and he will be mourned by many,” added CFI.

He made his first visit to Israel in 2000 as First Minister.

Once asked by the Israeli lawyer Arsen Ostrovsky were his support for the Jewish state came from Trimble replied in 2018:”It’s just the right thing to do.”

Trimble went on to author CFI’s pamphlet ‘Misunderstanding Ulster’, which challenged simplistic comparisons of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to the Troubles in Northern Ireland.

He also criticised those arguing the Good Friday Agreement should compel Israel to negotiate with Hamas.
Stephen Daisley: David Trimble was a true friend to Israel
This underscores the value of Trimble’s advocacy for Israel. He was not the sort of Israel supporter who preferred to address himself exclusively to other Israel supporters. He sought out those who were inveterately hostile and tried, with gentlemanly reason and good humour, to convince them of the justice of Israel’s cause — or, at the very least, the injustice of their disproportionate aversion towards the Jewish state. In 2013, he appeared before the UN Human Rights Council, a notoriously and obsessively anti-Israel outfit, and warned the body its conduct ‘can only undermine and subvert the peace process’. He reminded it of ‘criticism by successive UN secretaries-general of this council’s habit of singling out only one specific country, to the exclusion of virtually everything else’.

Trimble also put his international standing to good use to persuade European governments to proscribe Hezbollah — both its military and political wings — and to urge the international community to hold firm on the principle that Hamas was a terrorist organisation, not a legitimate negotiating partner for Israel. In 2010, he joined with Václav Havel, John Howard, Stephen Harper and José Maria Aznar to found the Friends of Israel Initiative, an organisation dedicated to fighting back against international delegitimisation of the Jewish state.

His most formal service to Israel was as a foreign observer on the Turkel Commission, a public inquiry into the interception of the Mavi Marmara. That incident, in May 2010, involved a pro-Palestinian maritime convoy attempting to reach Gaza. Passengers attacked IDF soldiers who boarded the vessel, who responded by shooting dead nine people. Nine Israeli soldiers were wounded. Although acting as an observer rather than a commissioner, Trimble suspended his connections to pro-Israel groups during the investigation. Once it was complete, he reflected on the rigour of the inquiry and its adherence to process, commenting: ‘When taken as a whole, looking at the Israeli legal system, it will pass muster with the best in the world.’

David Trimble’s legacy in Northern Ireland is substantial but he deserves to be remembered too for his commitment to Israel and conscientious defence of its rights. It did nothing for his reputation among political and intellectual elites but he never seemed to be after their approval. He didn’t forget Jerusalem and that is all that mattered.

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