Monday, August 15, 2022

From Ian:

It's time for Amnesty International's candle to be extinguished - opinion
The resignation of Amnesty International Secretary-General Agnès Callamard is no longer enough to serve justice. It is time for Amnesty International to complete its 60-year mission and go down in history, before all memories of the heroic days of the struggle for human rights have faded. The scandal with the Ukrainian report is a moment that Amnesty should seize and close its doors forever. It is the only remaining honorable exit, worthy of a Nobel Peace Prize winner.

Unfortunately, Amnesty International did not understand this and thus it condemned itself to a shameful and painful end. And not only itself, but also all its predecessors who fought against torture in the past six decades, including the founding father of Amnesty, Peter Benenson.

“It is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness,” wrote this British lawyer back in 1961 in a famous article for The Observer, in which he demanded the release of two Portuguese students, victims of Salazar’s dictatorship and thus laid the foundation of one of the largest global organizations for the protection of human rights. Looking at his successors today, Benenson would probably say – “It is better to extinguish the candle than to celebrate the darkness.”

With the report on Ukraine, Amnesty International celebrated the darkness and helped to make it even thicker. Accusing Ukraine of knowingly sacrificing civilians by deploying its military forces in residential areas is an unforgivable support for the worst human rights violation the world has seen since World War II.

With this report, Amnesty has done the greatest service to Russian aggression since it began almost six months ago. Incomparably greater than all its propagandists have achieved together since February 24. This is a service for which the Kremlin would gladly give billions, because that’s what it will really be worth, if Amnesty International survives and continues to work as it has been working until now.
Gerald M. Steinberg: False Accusations and Ideological Bias
In his critique of Amnesty’s report, Tom Mutch describes an encounter with Rovera during her “investigations”:
In May this year, I was sat around a table with Donatella Rovera, Amnesty International’s Senior Crisis researcher predicting their upcoming report would land like a lead balloon. We were in the kitchen of our hotel in Kramatorsk, the administrative capital of Ukrainian-controlled Donetsk and we could hear the boom of artillery outside our windows every hour.

Rather than expressing shock at the relentless Russian bombardment, the Amnesty staff seemed much more concerned with the fact that a Ukrainian army unit had taken refuge in the basement of a college building.

We’d all been to the building: an abandoned language school in the frontline town of Bakhmut which had been turned into a temporary barracks for a Ukrainian unit. This is not a war crime. A military is perfectly entitled to set up in an evacuated educational institution, although of course that building can no longer claim civilian protection and there was a mainly abandoned civilian apartment block over the road, which had not been fully evacuated.

But Rovera was insistent that this military presence in a populated area was a “violation of international humanitarian law”’. When I pressed her on how the Ukrainian Army was supposed to defend a populated area, she said that it was irrelevant.

In many respects, this exchange summarizes the absence of credibility—both factual and legal—in these NGO attempts to investigate and report on conflict, and to assign blame. The same fundamental flaws in Amnesty’s report on the Ukraine, and the allegations of “putting civilians in harm’s way” have been documented in numerous other reports, particularly in the attempts to delegitimize Israeli responses to war and mass terror. Amnesty’s researchers, like those of HRW or the UN Human Rights Council, are not experts and do not even attempt to provide credible and verifiable sources to support what are often their pre-determined conclusions. Their judgments on international humanitarian law and the laws of armed conflict are no more than opinions, exploiting the ambiguity and largely theoretical nature of this discourse.

The sooner journalists, academics, diplomats, UN officials, and others acknowledge this reality, and the hollow state of the NGO campaigns based on these illusions, the better. More than enough damage, much of it irreversible, has already been caused by “reports” based on false accusations and ideological bias.

Sbarro and Malki Roth remembered via JM in the AM
Coinciding with the twenty-first anniversary of the Hamas bombing attack on a Jerusalem Sbarro pizzeria, Nachum Segal hosted Arnold Roth, father of Malki Roth who was one of the fifteen innocents murdered in the atrocity. Arnold took part by phone from Jerusalem.

They discussed Keren Malki (the Malki Foundation) and the ongoing efforts to get terrorist Ahlam Tamimi extradited from Jordan to the US to face federal charges and more.

Nachum Segal, as recounted in Wikipedia, is an American radio disc jockey. He has hosted the program Jewish Moments in the Morning (commonly abbreviated as JM in the AM) since September 1983.

Every morning from 6 to 9, Segal runs his show incorporating music, interviews, news reports and much more. The Nachum Segal Network has a number of different programs during the non-morning hours (schedule here).

According to Wikipedia, Segal's advocacy for social causes and his longevity has propelled JM in the AM to be regarded as the radio program of record in the Jewish world. He is known for analyzing and probing issues from the perspective of the Jewish world. Influential members of the political world – from ambassadors to senators to Members of Kness
et – have sought time on the air and joined Segal in the studio. JM in the AM has been called the "Voice of Klal Yisrael (The Whole of Israel)".

Click the button above to hear an audio record of the program.

David Collier: An open letter to Edinburgh Council – are you in bed with terrorists?
Edinburgh Council and the antisemite

A basic fact of this motion is that you are only sitting to debate twinning with Gaza because of the activity of Pete Gregson. If not for him – and the antisemitism that drives him – it would not even be on your agenda. However much he may choose to protest it, Gregson is an abusive antisemite and Holocaust denier. Gregson did not just ridicule my name and my Jewish identity – he even believes that Zionist Jews were not actually victims of the Holocaust at all:

“So Hitler gassed millions of Jews, only they were the Bundists, leaving the Zionists to crow over their dead ashes and demand a colony of their very own to make amends for their dead brothers and sisters who did not want to live in a racist colony at all, thank you very much.”

The idea that Hitler somehow separated Jews according to what they politically believed is a denial of the very essence of the Holocaust – the intent to eradicate the Jews completely.

The truth is that everyone knows that Pete Gregson, the proposer of this motion, is a toxic antisemite. But antisemitism is only the tip of the iceberg.

Edinburgh Council and Islamic Jihad
Gregson recently sent you all an email, informing you that the Secretary of the Edina-Gaza Twinning Association lost his cousin during the recent fighting. For once he was telling the truth.

The Secretary’s name is Mohammed Almadhoun, and he indeed lost his cousin in the recent fighting. This is the picture Almadhoun chose to post of him:
Mohammed Almadhoun created his Facebook account in August 2019. I have no idea what his previous Facebook page looked like, what he posted there – or why he decided to create a new one – and importantly – you have no idea either. His family members are not under your watchful eye, so they felt no need to hide the truth. These are the images that they posted:
The cousin, Muhammad Ahmed Al-Madhoun (Nasrallah), served in ‘Saraya Al Quds’ (the Al Quds Brigade), which is the military wing of the Islamic Jihad. He was active at the time he was targeted by Israel and the Islamic Jihad put out an official posting about his death. You’ll note that Mohammed Almadhoun, the Secretary of the Edina-Gaza Twinning Association, liked (and commented) on the post (left) of his cousin in uniform.

Nor is he just a ‘distant cousin’. In an image taken at the funeral, you can see Mohammed Almadhoun standing at the entrance of the doorway at the house of mourning. You can even see the Islamic Jihad shroud covering the body:

PMW: PA continues to celebrate the most heinous murderers who participated in the 1929 Arab massacre of the Jews
Today, the 18th of the Hebrew month of Av, is the anniversary of the 1929 Arab massacre of 67 Jews in Hebron. While the massacre started in Hebron, rampaging Arabs also murdered Jews in Jerusalem and Tzefat. In total, in the course of just one week, Arabs murdered 130 Jews.

Of the many participants in the massacre, three murderers, who “committed particularly brutal murders [of Jews] at Safed and Hebron,” according to the report by the British Government to the League of Nations (Dec. 31, 1930), were singled out by the British authorities and hung for their actions.

While the massacre took place 65 years before its creation, the Palestinian Authority has adopted the three murderers as Palestinian heroes and role models, and it marks the day of their hanging, using it as an opportunity to glorify their killings every year.

This year is no different, and the PA published numerous items in its official PA press honoring the killers. Referring to them as “fighters” and “Martyrs” the PA official daily intertwined the glorification of the murderers with the modern-day PA policy prohibiting the sale of land to Jews:
“Yesterday, June 17 [2022], was the 92nd anniversary of the execution of the three fighters Muhammad Jamjoum, Fuad Hijazi, and Ataa Al-Zir (i.e., the murderers) by the British Mandate authorities…

The three Martyrs wrote a letter the day before the execution which said: ‘…We have willingly sacrificed our souls and skulls so they will be foundations for building our nation’s independence and freedom, so that the nation will continue to be united and carrying out jihad in order to remove the enemies from Palestine and so that we will protect its land and not sell even one inch of it to the enemies.’”

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 18, 2022]

The article was accompanied with an image of three cards hanging from nooses with “Muhammad Jamjoum,” “Fuad Hijazi,” and “Ataa Al-Zir” written on them. The text at bottom of the cards reads: “The Martyrs of the Al-Buraq Rebellion (i.e., the PA name for the massacre and accompanying riots) June 17, 1930”

PA TV marked the hanging of the murderers by running a number of special fillers. One filler shows an artist creating an image of murderers Muhammad Jamjoum, Fuad Hijazi, and Ataa Al-Zir, while part of the song “From Acre Prison”, in which murderer Ataa Al-Zir is referred to as “the distinguished person,” is played in the background.

Lyrics: “Muhammad Jamjoum, Ataa Al-Zir, and Fuad Hijazi, the power of ammunition,
Look at the one going first, the distinguished person,
They are executing us on verdicts of the oppressor.”
Text on screen: “The homeland will never forget its revolutionaries. Ataa Al-Zir.”

[Official PA TV, June 17, 2022]
Confronting South Africa’s Official Anti-Zionism
When advancing antisemitic tropes, van Heerden frequently cites the Israeli anti-Zionist journalist Gideon Levy, whose arguments often provide cover for those commentators anxious to deflect charges of antisemitism. We are thus told, pace Levy, that the “Jewish people have a deeply-held belief that they are the chosen people, chosen by God himself. And as a ‘holy people,’ and having a covenant with God, they can do no wrong in proclaiming his name and providing a light to others.”

This distortion of the “chosen people” concept as a doctrine of Jewish ethno-racial superiority has long been part of anti-Zionism’s arsenal, advancing antisemitic canards to make the case that the Jews and their culture are themselves racist. Other than Levy, van Heerden quotes no other source for this claim, nor the associated outlandish claims he makes, among them the comment that, again following Levy, “if you just scratch the surface of every Jewish person in Israel, you will find that they do not see Palestinians as human beings and hence any argument put forward about respecting the human rights of the Palestinians does not apply here because they are not human beings and hence must be treated as such.” Later on, he tells us that Israelis “cannot or will not acknowledge that what they are doing is no different from those very Nazis so aptly represented by [Adolf] Eichmann.”

The fundamental point is that van Heerden’s op-ed is not an outlier; what he says here about Israel is little different from what South Africa’s rulers have to say. Until her untimely death from cancer last month, the ANC’s Deputy General Secretary, Jessie Duarte, was arguably the South African leader most given to incendiary rhetoric targeting Israel and Jews, going so far as to state, during a May 2021 demonstration outside the Israeli Embassy in Pretoria, that “[I]f we do not stop this imperialism in Israel, one day they will move into Africa and start dispossessing our land here.”

These poisonous notions are encountered around the world but rarely by elected leaders. However, the ANC’s enthusiasm for denouncing Israel as an apartheid state has opened the minds of its supporters to antisemitism as a progressive ideology—what was once termed, in a different context, as the “socialism of fools.”

The international community, which has rightly supported South Africa’s transition from a racist government to a multi-racial democracy, can no longer turn a blind eye to the anti-Zionist antisemitism actively promoted by the ANC. The United States and the European Union, in particular, need to remind the South Africans that such rhetoric is frowned upon, and they need to publicly condemn every such utterance by that country’s leadership.

Our admiration for the struggle against apartheid, coupled with our knowledge of the suffering endured by black South Africans under that system, has perhaps made us reticent about criticizing the current generation of leaders. No more.
'Pro-Israel? That's a dirty moniker where I come from'
"I'm the best version of myself here," Erin Schrode says after an hour-long conversation on her unique career.

Schrode, an up-and-coming Jewish-American entrepreneur and social activist, had arrived in Israel to give a speech at the Birthright Israel Excel conference, sharing her own insight on how the program that brings young Jews from all over the world on a 10-day tour of Israel changed her, and possibly even her career.

Schrode is no stranger to public life and fighting for causes she believes in, both in her community and for the greater good.

She formed an environmental NGO as a teen and even ran for Congress at the age of 24, and she continues to promote a whole host of environmental and social causes to this day.

Schrode's statement about how she is her best version in Israel is particularly interesting since says this feeling of belonging to Israel has not worn off ever since her first trip to Israelonthat program. She was brought up in a home where Judaism was loosely observed and Israel was not a major part of life. But then, in 2010, a 19-year-old Shcrode joined Birthright Israel's 10-day without even really knowing what to expect, only to discover that it was a life-changing experience.

After coming back to the US, Schrode set her sights on national politics, becoming a rising force on the Left, to the point that 6 years later she was on the verge of becoming the Democratic nominee in the race to represent California's second congressional district, a heavily democratic area. Had she won the nomination and then gone on to win the general election (as most Democrats in California do), she would have become the youngest member of Congress at 25.

Schrode's path to social activism began at a very young age when she saw her mother's non-stop pursuit of answers in the face of an unexplained rise in cancer cases in Marine County, California.
Poland tries to rewrite country's role in Holocaust - PM email leak
Poland’s attempt to rewrite the nation’s involvement in the Holocaust was revealed in leaked emails between Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, right-wing journalist Bronisław Wildstein and two political advisers, according to a report by Polish news site Wyborcza last week.

In one email from 2018, Wildstein told Morawiecki that “the basic problem we have in our relations with the Jews is that our enemies have monopolized all contact with them.”

Wildstein went on to explain that “our enemies” referred not only to political adversaries but also “enemies of the entire Polish nation. ”As an example, he named the Center for Holocaust Research, which he said “presents an almost obsessive hatred of Poles.”

He also named historian Jan Grabowski, who “says that the issue of Poles helping Jews can be addressed only after our own [Polish] crimes have been investigated,” and sociologist Barbara Engelking, who has “taken over relations with Yad Vashem.” Both academics specialize in the Holocaust and German-occupied Poland.

The email ended with Wildstein telling Morawiecki that it might be necessary to analyze the status of institutes such as the Jewish Historical Institute and the POLIN museum “and the possibility of introducing our people into their midst.”

In another email revealed by Wyborcza, the journalist tells the prime minister that it is important to promote Poland both locally and internationally by equating Polish suffering in the Holocaust to that of the Jews.

“The media issue you mention is important, not just in Israel, but all over the world,” Morawiecki wrote in response, according to Wyborcza’s report. “We must map out journalists sympathetic to Poland. This is a job to be done right now by the Foreign Ministry and the Polish National Foundation.”
American Israel Haters Praise Slain Terrorist
Last week, a virulently anti-Israel group with an active US presence, glorified a top Palestinian terrorist, who was reported to be a commander of the US-designated Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades.

“The Lion of Nablus, Ibrahim Nabulsi was beloved by all in the city, emerging from an early age as one of its foremost defenders and resistance fighters,” said a post on the Palestinian Youth Movement’s (PYM) Facebook page.

“Nabulsi gave his life to protect and guard Nablus from zionist [sic] incursion,” the post added, describing him as “a prime example of the sacrifice routinely given by the youth of the city to ensure its continued freedom from the occupation.”

Ibrahim al-Nabulsi and two other Palestinians were killed last Tuesday in a gun battle with Israeli security forces in the northern West Bank city of Nablus. The fighting followed a conflict between Israel and Palestinian terrorists in Gaza that was triggered after the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) launched over 100 rockets into Israel in response to the arrest of its leader Bassam al-Saadi. To circumvent a major terrorist attack, Israel launched Operation Breaking Dawn, targeting PIJ leaders and infrastructure in Gaza.

Al-Nabulsi has been on the IDF’s wanted listed for many years, and was involved in a June shooting at Joseph’s Tomb in Nablus that wounded two Israeli civilians and an IDF commander.

The PYM post also included what is purported to be al-Nabulsi’s last recorded message: “I love my mother. Take care of [my] homeland after me. I request for the sake of our honor, no one abandon the gun. I am here besieged, and I am going to be martyred. Pray for me.”

The post apparently was removed from PYM’s Instagram account on Thursday for violating the social media platform’s “community guidelines.” It remains on PYM’s Facebook and Twitter pages.

The Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigade, which is linked to the West Bank’s ruling Fatah party, warned of “blood for blood” retaliation and threatened “operations that will shake” Israel.

PYM was not alone in mourning al-Nabulsi.

The antisemitic group Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP)‘s Wayne State University chapter called al-Nabulsi a “martyr” and the “Lion of Nablus,” adding he was “brutally murdered … by the Israeli Occupation Forces.”
Concordia University Student Newspaper Lauds Islamic Jihad Terrorists As “Resistance Fighters.”
In early August, Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), an extremist Islamist terrorist group based in the Gaza Strip, engaged in a brief, but intense three-day conflict.

It began when PIJ, also known as Islamic Jihad, mobilized their forces in response to Israel arresting one of their leaders and commenced preparations for attacks on an Israeli civilian bus and Israeli gas fields. Shortly thereafter, the group began an intense campaign of rocket attacks. By the time an Egyptian-mediated ceasefire took effect on the evening of August 7, Islamic Jihad fired roughly one thousand rockets and mortars into Israeli territory, indiscriminately targeting Israeli civilians and population centres in general.

However, in spite of these incontrovertible facts, it seems that no matter what the circumstances, Israel is always to blame.

In a recent photo essay published on August 13 in The Link, Concordia University’s student newspaper, entitled: “Justice and Accountability: Marching for Gaza,” author Ibrahim Mahmoud covered an anti-Israel rally held in downtown Montreal on August 10, organized by a handful of Palestinian campus groups in Montreal.

Untold by the Link, this Montreal rally featured calls to “globalize the intifada,” code word for armed violence against Israelis. At the rally, the Palestinian Youth Movement, an organization which praised Palestinian terrorism and mourned Palestinian terrorists (see here and here) projected a video showing a Kaffiyeh-clad Mario, from the Nintendo video game series, jumping on an IDF Goomba.

Mahmoud’s reporting begins with a deeply misleading introduction to the recent fighting when he writes that “Beginning on Aug. 5, a series of attacks from the Israeli military targeted many Palestinian resistance fighters and civilians.”

Completely disregarding – in fact, ignoring – the ongoing rocket fire from Islamic Jihad is a stunning omission, but that’s only where the problems with the column begin.
Spanish band defaces Israeli flag at music festival, uploads video to Instagram
Members of a Spanish hip-hop band that prides itself on addressing social issues like LGBT rights and feminism in its songs defaced an Israeli flag during an international music festival held in Hungary on Sunday.

Performing at the popular Sziget Music Festival in Budapest on Sunday, the 3-member female rap group Tribade uploaded videos of their concert to their Instagram story, followed by a video of them writing statements against the State of Israel and in support of the Palestinians.

The video shows the band members walking past several tents apparently used by Israeli guests of the concert, before reaching the affixed flag and pulling out black marker pens.

They write various statements on the flag, including: “Israel doesn’t exist,” “Free Palestine” and “Eat this” alongside a drawing of a penis.

Tribade was founded in 2017 in Barcelona and has three members: Bittah, Sombra Alor and Masiva Lulla, who perform along with DJ Big Mark.

In an interview with the MadameRAP website in 2019, the band described its music as a “mix of speech (message) and esthetics. Culture, resistance and urban music.” In the same interview, they said they identified with “feminism that includes all the trans, dissident and gay identities under the ideas of antiracism and anticapitalism.”
Australian student union calls for boycott of ‘apartheid colonial state’ Israel
The student body of Australia’s highest-ranked university passed a motion Monday calling for a full academic boycott of all Israeli institutions. A similar motion was passed in April before being repealed amid community backlash and the threat of legal action.

The new motion, passed on Monday by the University of Melbourne Student Union (UMSU), featured a strongly worded preamble accusing Israel of the “ethnic cleansing of more than 350+ Palestinian villages and towns” and “forcefully displacing over 750,000 Palestinians from their homes.”

Much of the language of Monday’s motion is identical to April’s motion. It was not immediately clear what led UMSU to resubmit the motion.

The motion was passed 13–3 with one abstention.

The preamble says Israel is an “apartheid colonial state” operating an “open-air prison” in the Gaza Strip. The document suggests Israel intends to carry out a forceful expulsion of Gazans followed by the “massacre” of those who remain in the coastal enclave.

The April motion sparked an enormous backlash against the student body. At the time, a University of Melbourne spokesperson distanced the institution from its student body, saying the motion was “not the position of the University of Melbourne.”

Shortly after its passing, a non-Jewish student, Justin Riazaty, launched a lawsuit, alleging that the motion was in violation of Australian law. Amid growing legal pressure and accusations of antisemitism, the student union revoked the motion in May.

In response to the fresh motion, which claims that Zionism is a racist colonial ideology, a coalition of Australian Jewish advocacy groups released a joint statement saying, “It is disingenuous to suggest that this motion is simply about criticism of the Israeli government or support for the Palestinians… the motion is imbued with racism and its language drips with venomous hatred.”

CAMERA UK co-editor to speak at London antisemitism conference
Our co-editor Adam Levick will be one of the speakers at a 3-day academic conference antisemitism organised by the newly established London Centre for the Study of Contemporary Antisemitism (LCSCA) – to take place Sept. 11-13 at the Bloomsbury Theatre in Camden. The list of speakers includes Anthony Julius, Howard Jacobson, Tracy-Ann Oberman, Rachel Riley, David Baddiel, Dave Rich, Luciana Berger, LCSCA founder David Hirsh and many, many others.

Here’s the abstract for Adam’s talk, which is scheduled for Monday, Sept. 12, at 9:00am.
The aim of this paper is to demonstrate that Critical Race Theory (CRT), whilst not intrinsically antisemitic, follows a pattern of thought about race and racism which erases antisemitism, and can lead to antisemitic outcomes.

Race is the locus of power in the CRT worldview, which posits a moral binary holding that white people manipulate language and history, promote the “false” idea of racial progress and employ ‘colour-blind notions of equal treatment’ in order to maintain their dominance over all spheres of society.

In addition to the fact that Jews have generally flourished in societies which uphold such liberal principles (the veneration and codification of individual as opposed to group rights, which are protected via the neutral application of laws), when a movement posits a theory of justice based narrowly on which groups have power and which groups don’t, Jews – due to their relative success – will inevitably be branded as powerful and deemed, at least, complicit in injustice within this paradigm.

I will illustrate how ‘dumbed-down’ versions of CRT in the media and in popular books (such as Ibram X Kendi’s “How to be an anti-racist”) solidify the idea of Jews as white, or even “hyper-white”, and promote the belief that racial disparities in educational, social and economic outcomes are, by definition, evidence of systemic racism – bigotry that, in their rejection of liberalism, must be combated by ‘anti-racist’ discrimination against ‘whites’ (including Jews).
Overview of BBC radio reporting on Operation Breaking Dawn
In all, over those four days of coverage listeners heard from two Israeli journalists, from an Israeli foreign ministry spokesperson on two occasions and from the Israeli ambassador to the UK (partly repeated in a later programme). A recording of Israel’s prime minister speaking appeared in one programme and a recording of remarks from Israel’s minister of defence was used on four occasions.

In contrast, listeners heard from two representatives of the Hamas terrorist organisation on two occasions each, from the director of the Hamas-run Gaza health ministry on two occasions, from the director of the Hamas-run Shifa hospital, from a political activist in the Gaza Strip, from the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist organisation spokesman and from the PA representative in London (partly repeated in a later programme).

The fact that Hamas imposed restrictions on journalists in the Gaza Strip, which included a ban on reporting of shortfall missiles, clearly did not perturb the BBC World Service from soliciting interviews with representatives of that terrorist organisation and providing a worldwide platform for its talking points.

BBC editorial guidelines state:
“11.2.6 Any proposal to approach an organisation (or an individual member of an organisation) designated a ‘terrorist group’ by the Home Secretary under the Terrorism Acts, and any proposal to approach individuals or organisations responsible for acts of terror, to participate in our output must be referred in advance to Director Editorial Policy and Standards.”

Both Hamas and the PIJ are designated by the UK Home Secretary and it would therefore appear that those interviews with members of Hamas were approved by David Jordan in advance, despite their minimal contribution to audience understanding of the story and notwithstanding Hamas’ blatant disregard for press freedom.
AP Rebrands Islamic Jihad Rocket Attacks as Israeli Strikes
“From Israeli strikes on Gaza, to flowing volcanoes in Iceland, to flood damage in Kentucky, this photo gallery highlights some of the most compelling images from around the world made or published by The Associated Press in the past week,” reads the text accompanying the Associated Press’ July 30-Aug. 5 Week in Pictures feature highlighting some of the most dramatic images from the week.

The photos are indeed compelling, even as the first —supposedly on “Israeli strikes on Gaza” — does not tell the story that the AP writer set out to tell.

In fact, the relevant photograph of Gaza shows outgoing Palestinian rockets targeting Israel — not Israeli airstrikes. Indeed, AP’s caption for that photograph does correctly identify the scene:
Rockets fired by Palestinian militants toward Israel, in Gaza City, Friday, Aug. 5, 2022. Palestinian officials say Israeli airstrikes on Gaza have killed at least 10 people, including a senior militant, and wounded 55 others. (AP Photo/Fatima Shbair)

Like flowing volcano, the photo agency’s Week in Pictures misinformation has spread across the Internet, appearing on countless news sites including The Independent and San Francisco Chronicle. Though CAMERA contacted AP last week about the photo gallery, curated by AP photo editor James Okungu in New York, the news agency has yet to set the record straight.
More BBC cheapening of the title ‘human rights activist’
Al Ghazzawi’s membership of the ‘One Democratic State Campaign’ is hence not surprising given its mission:
“The One Democratic State Campaign is a Palestinian-led initiative that calls for the end of the colonial Zionist regime and strives for the establishment of a single democratic state in historic Palestine, based on political, social, economic and cultural justice, in which Palestinians and Israeli Jews live in equality.”

In other words, al Ghazzawi is a ‘one-stater’. She supports bringing an end to Jewish sovereignty in Israel and denying Jews the right of self-determination, which is a form of antisemitism according to the IHRA working definition. While al Ghazzawi may claim to be a “human rights activist” in her Twitter bio, the fact that she supports the denial of the right of self-determination to Jews clearly indicates otherwise.

The BBC World Service however chose to present her using the ‘halo‘ term “human rights activist” even though a very short pre-interview internet search would have shown just how inaccurate that description is.

And so, yet again, the BBC has contributed to the worrying and growing phenomenon of the cheapening of the important issue of human rights by misrepresenting the activities of political campaigners against Israel as ‘human rights activism’.
British archaeologist gets medal of honor for excavation work at Treblinka
A British archaeologist was awarded an honorary medal on Aug. 4 by the Treblinka Museum for her work investigating Nazi crimes that took place at the concentration camp in Poland.

Caroline Sturdy Colls, a professor of conflict archaeology and genocide investigation with a specialization in Holocaust studies at Staffordshire University in England, was presented with the award by the director of the Treblinka Museum Edward Kopówka.

The ceremony was also attended by 94-year-old Holocaust survivor Ike Alterman, whose mother and sister were murdered in the camp.

The professor, who was previously awarded the European Archaeological Heritage Prize, was thanked for her “extensive efforts to honor the victims who were murdered in the camps and to educate future generations,” reported the BBC.

It is the second medal ever awarded by the Treblinka Museum.

The professor’s findings formed the basis for the museum’s permanent exhibition titled, “Finding Treblinka.” During a 2013 excavation led by Sturdy Colls, more than 300 items were found, including ceramic tiles that were used to line gas chambers at the concentration camp.

It is far from the first time her work has been recognized. Sturdy Colls earned the European Archaeological Heritage Prize in 2016. She has authored five books and other related chapters, and numerous papers on archaeology and the Holocaust.
ToI tale about soccer hero saving German Jew will be studied by Premier League youth
The UK’s Holocaust Education Trust will integrate the story of how a Tottenham Hotspur soccer player saved the life of this writer’s father-in-law into its Football Remembers the Holocaust program for under-14s in the elite Premier League.

As reported in the Times of Israel last month, Rolf Friedland went to watch England beat Germany 6-3 in Berlin in May 1938.

Just shy of the age of 18, he was desperate to leave Nazi Germany after the departure of his parents (to the UK) and his younger brother (to the US).

He hung around after the match for the England players to come out and approached the English left back, Bert Sproston, imploring him for an invitation to England.

Sproston, then a player for Tottenham Hotspur, was no fan of the Germans.

Upon his return home, with the help of Tottenham, he immediately went to the Football Association to ask permission to invite Friedland to visit England for an England v Rest of the World match at Highbury, in North London, on October 26 of that year.

That invitation led to the issue of a visa and Friedland, who later changed his name to Ralph Freeman, arrived at the port of Harwich on England’s east coast in time for that game.

At Tottenham’s invitation, the bewildered young man spent his first three nights in the club’s dressing rooms at White Hart Lane.
Missouri Man Admits Plan to Bomb Local Synagogue, Says He Hates Jews ‘With Rage’
A man from St. Louis admitted in court that he threatened to bomb a local synagogue while people were inside, the US Department of Justice announced.

Cody Steven Rush, 30, pleaded guilty on Aug. 8 in front of US District Judge Henry E. Autrey to the use of a telephone and instrument of interstate commerce to make a threat, a charge that carries a potential prison sentence of up to 10 years.

Rush admitted calling the St. Louis branch of the FBI on Nov. 5, 2021, and saying, “I’m going to blow up a church.”

He gave his name to the FBI dispatcher and said his target was the Central Reform Congregation in St. Louis. Rush told the FBI agent on the call that he would act on his threat the next morning when people were inside the synagogue, and that he “hated Jews.”

He apparently called back later and again threatened to attack the synagogue “while they are in service.” When the FBI agent on the call asked Rush if had anything to add, he replied: “Yeah, that I hate them with rage.”

Rush called the FBI a third time and shared that he was on the same street as the synagogue, according to the US Department of Justice. He made additional threats when the FBI called him back.

UK church mural by Jewish artist who fled Nazis to be preserved
A mural created in 1955 for a Catholic church by a Jewish refugee who had escaped the Nazi regime years earlier was recently saved from destruction after the UK government designated the church that it’s in as a building “of special interest,” The Guardian reported.

Hungarian Jew George Mayer-Marton was a prominent artist in the Viennese art world, before he departed Austria after its annexation by Nazi Germany in 1938, known as the Anschluss.

Mayer-Marton relocated to St John’s Wood in north London, where he tried to continue his art while teaching at the Liverpool College of Art after the war. He also offered his services to Catholic churches, which hired him to create large murals.

Thus, “The Crucifixion” was created — a near 8-meter-(26-foot)-tall mural made of stone and glass tesserae depicting Jesus on the cross for the Holy Rosary church in the town of Oldham just outside Manchester.

It was described as a “dazzling beauty” by Tristram Hunt, director of the world-renowned Victoria and Albert Museum.

But decades later, the church’s congregation has largely been scattered and the building that once housed the church remains abandoned, with developers eyeing the site for new projects.
Israel wins gold in team marathon event at European Athletics Championships
Israel took gold Monday in the men’s team marathon event at the European Athletics Championships in Munich, an extraordinary success coming 50 years after the massacre of Israeli athletes in the same city.

Israel’s Marhu Teferi also won a silver medal in the individual runners’ competition, while fellow Israeli Gashau Ayale picked up the bronze.

Along with Teferi and Ayale, who are both Ethiopian-born Israelis, the other members of the gold medal squad were Omer Ramon, Yimer Getahun and Girmaw Amare.

The strong showing for Israel came 50 years after 11 Israeli athletes were murdered by Palestinian terrorists during the 1972 Munich Olympics.

“This is really exciting for me. I am very happy with this achievement,” Teferi told reporters after the race.

“History in the European championships,” said Culture and Sports Minister Chili Tropper said in a statement congratulating the athletes: “Tremendous achievements for Israel. We are proud of you!”

Israel’s Olympic Committee said in a statement it was “moved to tears to experience the exciting continuity of Israeli sports on Munich soil” 50 years after the massacre.
Weapons, historic artifacts seized by Border Police in West Bank
Weapons and historic artifacts, including coins, doors and olive presses from the Roman and Byzantine eras and the Iron Age, were seized by Israel Border Police from illegal antiquities dealers in the West Bank early Monday morning.

Over the past few months, Border Police and the Civil Administration's Archaeology Unit conducted an investigation into a number of antiquities dealers who were operating in the Samaria region.

On Monday morning, Border Police and Civil Administration officers raided the homes of suspects in the Palestinian towns of Burka, Huwara and Silat ad-Dhahr in the Samaria region.

Illegal weapons and archaeological artifacts, including olive presses, pillar capitals, doors from the Roman and Byzantine era and ancient tools from the Iron Age and the early Islamic era.

Three Palestinian suspects were arrested and transferred for further questioning.

"The antiquities of our country are a national and historical asset, we will continue to work together with all the parties for the preservation of the antiquities and the prevention of illegal trade and the destruction of ancient sites," said Jihad Hassan, the area commander of the Judea and Samaria region in Border Police.
Hollywood to the Holy Land: The Unlikely Celebs Who Have Expressed Their Love of Israel
Kanye West: Keeping Up With The Kibbutzim
A hugely successful rap career and a headline-grabbing marriage (and divorce) with reality television titan Kim Kardashian have made Kanye West a household name. But did you West was also an ardent supporter of the Abraham Accords, which saw Israel normalize relations with several Arab countries?

Two years ago, West heaped praise on former US president Donald Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner for his role in brokering the historic agreements, having described Kushner as doing “more for peace in the Middle East than anyone in 30 years.”

In addition, in 2015, West resisted calls from the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign to play a concert in Tel Aviv for around 25,000 fans. On the same trip, he is said to have visited an Armenian church in Jerusalem’s Old City and baptized his daughter.

More recently, the star revealed his admiration for Israel’s Kibbutz movement when he stated his belief that Christians should build similar communities. “Jewish people have this type of circular community… it’s like where they live, and where we need to live, where the grandparents can take care of the kids,” he explained. “It’s better to have a grandparent taking care of the kids than a nanny taking care of kids — hired love. You get what I’m saying? That we move as a community, and as a community, we will not fail.”

Arnold Schwarzenegger: ‘I’ll Be Back… To Israel!’
His father Gustav might have been a member of the Nazi party, but Arnold Schwarzenegger is proof that sometimes the apple does fall (very) far from the tree. Not only have many of the ex-bodybuilder’s mentors been Jewish, but Schwarzenegger has repeatedly expressed his admiration and fondness for Israel.

In 2011, for example, the Terminator actor revealed that the Jewish state was the first country he visited when he became governor of California. He added that one of his first priorities in the role was to sign a bill that called on the state’s pension funds to divest their money from companies that did business in Iran.

Describing himself as a “long-time friend of Israel,” he also said he visited the country on many occasions.

From attending fundraisers held by Friends of the Israel Defense Forces to signing declarations that condemn Gaza’s terrorist rulers Hamas, Schwarzenegger has repeatedly found ways to show his support for Israel and its nine million citizens.

Helen Mirren: The Queen Speaks
Oscar-winning actress Helen Mirren has repeatedly used her platform to defend Israel in the face of coordinated and baseless attacks by the country’s critics.

In 2016, she announced she was a “believer” in Israel during a speech in Jerusalem, lashing out at efforts by BDS campaigners. “I think that art is an incredibly important way of communication,” she said. “The artists of the country are the people you need to communicate with and make a relationship with and learn from and build upon. So I absolutely don’t believe in the boycott, and here I am.”

Mirren, who won an Academy Award for her role as Queen Elizabeth II, has a longstanding affinity for the Jewish state, having spent time living on a Kibbutz in 1967 — “just six months after the Six Day War” — with her Jewish boyfriend at the time. “After we worked there on the kibbutz we hitchhiked around Israel and I actually slept on the beach in Eilat, so that was my first experience of Israel and I was very taken by the country and especially by the people at that time,” she reminisced.

Mirren caught some flak earlier this year when it was revealed she had been cast as the late Israeli prime minister Golda Meir in an upcoming biopic. While the British star said criticism of her casting was “legitimate,” she raised the point that such a precedent could lead to questions over the appropriateness of a Jewish actor playing the role of a non-Jew or of only gay actors playing gay characters. “Is this really a path you want to go down?” Mirren asked.
TMZ: Joan Rivers -- GOES OFF on Epic Israel_Palestine Rant

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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 19 years and 40,000 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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