Saturday, September 17, 2022

From Ian:

Jonathan Tobin: America’s Holocaust failure through the lens of 21st-century politics
The film asks whether Americans will respond to future catastrophes with more concern. But while such pious sentiments seem appropriate, they are also entirely beside the point. We already know how Americans act when confronted with other genocides. In the case of Rwanda, they did nothing. The same is true with respect to the horrors being visited on the Uyghur people in Western China by the Chinese Communist Party regime in Beijing right now.

Genocide is, of course, globally very different. Those being perpetrated outside of the context of a world war in which the murderers are also bent on conquest are bound to be treated less seriously, and that is why no one in the West lifts a finger when mass murders happen in places like Africa or central Asia, where no strategic interests are in play and few journalists are present.

As historian Deborah Lipstadt, the current State Department Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism, correctly notes in the film, Nazi Germany largely achieved many of its goals with respect to the Jews. As the late historian Lucy Dawidowicz wrote in her classic work, The War Against the Jews, the German war waged on the Jews was entirely separate from the one they were fighting against the Allies. They won the former while losing the latter. The Allies never really cared about the war on the Jews—or at least not enough to do anything about it before their victory ended the slaughter.

Moreover, the attempt to frame the Holocaust as a function of general intolerance is always a mistake. Anti-Semitism isn’t merely hateful sentiments; it’s a political organizing principle that has attached itself to a number of different ideologies. Then it was Nazism, today it is the Islamism embraced by an Iran that seeks a nuclear weapon with which another Holocaust can be perpetrated. The answer to such threats isn’t open borders for America, amnesty for illegal immigrants or even more people reading The Diary of Anne Frank. The only way to deter a future genocide of the Jews is Jewish empowerment and their ability to defend themselves, something they would only gain after the war with the creation of the state of Israel.

Like all of Burns’ films, “The U.S. and the Holocaust” makes for riveting television and provides plenty of fodder for serious thought. For those who know little about the history of American anti-Semitism and the basics of the Holocaust, it provides an introduction to these subjects.

Yet contrary to the film’s conclusion, the Holocaust tells us nothing about what to do about America’s contemporary immigration debates. The fact that a CNN interview with Burns led to a discussion in which efforts by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to ship illegal immigrants to Martha’s Vineyard, whose liberal residents advocate for open borders, were compared to the actions of the Nazis shows just how misleading the filmmaker’s efforts to frame the issue along these lines are. Nor should it help fuel efforts to falsely label those political opponents whom the liberal establishment is trying to smear as fascists and Nazis threatening democracy.

The Holocaust was a chapter of history marked by American failure. But as much as the documentary is told through the prism of what it meant to America, the responsibility for the murder of 6 million Jews belongs to the Nazis and their collaborators. It was a crime that the United States may not have had the power to deter, but it could have done more to stop once it began had its political leadership been willing to do so. That is bad enough. But those who want to apply that lesson to complicated 21st-century political debates while ignoring actual genocides going on in real-time now or seeking to render Israel defenseless in the face of those who are actively plotting another Holocaust, shouldn’t pretend they’ve learned anything from the past.
US congressman calls on FBI to probe handling of antisemitic crimes in New York
US House Representative Ritchie Torres on Thursday called on the FBI and US attorney general to investigate New York’s response to surging antisemitism.

Torres, from New York, called for the federal investigation in a letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray, US Attorney General Merrick Garland and Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke.

“I am respectfully asking the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department to consider investigating New York’s systematic failure to police and prosecute hate crimes and to issue recommendations to reform,” Torres said, after expressing his concerns about antisemitic violence.

“The federal government can no longer stand by passively as antisemitic violence goes unchecked and unpunished in America’s largest city,” said the letter, which was provided to The Times of Israel.

Democrat Torres represents New York’s 15th Congressional district in the Bronx and is a firm supporter of Jewish communities and Israel.

In the letter, he highlighted statistics from the Anti-Defamation League showing record numbers of antisemitic attacks in recent years, and an article from Tablet on the low number of serious punishments for anti-Jewish hate crimes.
Hamas Comes to Harvard
After the fighting between Israel and Hamas in 2012, Tunisian President Moncef Marzouki announced that he wanted to visit Gaza.

“I congratulate Ismail Haniyeh (the Hamas prime minister) on the victory in Gaza,” he said.

Marzouki had previously met with delegations from Hamas and Islamic Jihad. His support for the Muslim Brotherhood terrorist group was so blatant that even the PLO had warned him not to come to Gaza. After leaving office, Marzouki boarded the Hamas flotilla invading Israel. When the flotilla was intercepted, Israel deported him. These days, Tunisia doesn’t want him either.

But Massachusetts does.

More recently an arrest warrant was issued for the arrest of Marzouki by his own country. He was sentenced to four years in prison for national security violations last year.

Marzouki, then in Paris, was quoted as warning that, “I’ll soon return home to Tunisia and overthrow the incumbent regime” and “I’m waiting for a signal from the militants in Tunisia to decide on the date of my return to Tunis”.

Instead, he’s going to Harvard where there are even more militants than in Tunis.

The Ash Center for Democratic Governance at Harvard’s Kennedy School announced that it’s appointing the international fugitive and longtime Islamist ally as a senior fellow. The Harvard announcement makes no mention of either Marzouki’s support for Islamic terrorism against Jews or the fact that he is a wanted criminal. But they do hail him as a hero of the Arab Spring.

Last year, after a barrage of Hamas rockets and terrorist attacks, Marzouki had phoned Hamas boss Ismail Haniyeh to congratulate him for the “victory for the Arab and Muslim Ummah.”

In an interview with Al Jazeera, Marzouki told the Qatari Islamist media operation, “I have always supported Hamas because it is a national resistance movement. When I was president of Tunisia, I received Khaled Meshaal and Ismail Haniyeh, totally ignoring the US ambassador’s indignation at the meeting.”

Harvard has no objection to this. And instead describes Marzouki as a “freedom fighter.”


Lapid, Erdogan to meet at UN in first in Israel-Turkey relations since 2008
Prime Minister Yair Lapid is set to meet with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the United Nations General Assembly this week, making him the first Israeli premier to meet Erdogan since 2008.

Lapid’s meeting with Erdogan is another step in the ongoing rapprochement between the countries, including an announcement last month that Israel and Turkey would fully re-normalize relations. Lapid visited Ankara earlier this year, as foreign minister, to meet with his counterpart Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu.

Deteriorating relations
The last meeting between Erdogan and an Israeli prime minister, Ehud Olmert, in 2008, also marked the start of a deterioration in ties between Jerusalem and Ankara. Two days later, the IDF launched Operation Cast Lead to stop Hamas from shooting missiles at Israeli civilians, and Erdogan viewed the proximity of events as a betrayal.

Relations reached their lowest point in 2010 in the wake of the 2010 Mavi Marmara raid, in which IDF commandos boarded a ship aiming to break the blockade on Gaza. In the ensuing hand-to-hand combat, the commandos killed nine armed activists from an organization affiliated with Erdogan.

Who else is Lapid meeting?
Lapid is expected to meet with Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis of Greece at the UNGA, as well. Israel has sought to reassure Greece, which has long had tensions with Turkey, that improved relations with Ankara will not hurt their ties.

Lapid is also scheduled to meet with new Prime Minister of the UK Liz Truss and UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, and additional meetings may take place.

The prime minister is not expected to meet with US President Joe Biden due to scheduling complications – in part because Biden is set to attend the funeral of England’s Queen Elizabeth II on Monday and Lapid needs to depart the US immediately after his address to the UNGA on Thursday morning to get back to Israel in time for his son’s wedding.

President Isaac Herzog is scheduled to fly to London on Sunday as Israel’s representative at the queen’s funeral. He will be accompanied by his wife Michal.
Russia, Turkey, Iran and China showcase growing ties at confab
The Chinese leader stressed the need for states to work toward security and stability. He spoke after clashes had taken place between Azerbaijan and Armenia as well as Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan; and as Russia continues its war in Ukraine. It appears that this chaos could undermine China’s push for economic success. The Chinese leader said that it's important for SCO member states to pursue inclusiveness and shared benefits in promoting development cooperation. “Member states should actively promote trade and investment liberalization and facilitation, ensure the stable and smooth functioning of industrial and supply chains, and encourage the orderly flow of resources and factors of production, so as to realize greater economic integration and development in the region,” said Xi, according to CGTN.

China cares about its Belt and Road Initiative and other national development strategies, and new conflicts would undermine China’s agenda. However, it’s clear that other members of the SCO and dialogue partners of the forum, such as Turkey, are pushing for more influence and they will use conflict to get what they want. China, meanwhile, pays lip service to support “harmonious coexistence and mutual learning between different countries, nations and cultures.”

Overall the goal of China is for the SCO to play a larger role in the emerging multipolar world, meaning the SCO will balance the role of the US and the West. The SCO in general is moving to include more countries and influence Arab and Asian countries. Russia’s President was closely watched at the meetings. He has appeared weakened by Russia’s setbacks in Ukraine. Photos showed Vladimir Putin waiting for meetings and appeared to place a secondary role, even less influential than Erdogan. This shows that countries may wonder whether Russia can pull its weight and follow through on its obligations. However, it is not clear if the photos conveyed the whole story; Russia is still an important part of the SCO and China and Russia cooperate on many issues.
IDF chief Kohavi heads to France and Poland to discuss Iranian threat, Hezbollah
Military chief Aviv Kohavi is scheduled to travel to France and Poland next week to meet with his counterparts from the two European nations and discuss the Iranian threat and Hezbollah, the Israel Defense Forces said Saturday.

In a statement, the IDF said the first official visits were “taking place as part of the strengthening of military cooperation between the IDF and the Polish and French Armed Forces.”

Kohavi is to meet the chief of the Polish Armed Forces, Rajmund Andrzejczak, on Monday, and with the chief of the French Armed Forces, Thierry Burkhard, on Wednesday.

Andrzejczak, among nine other chiefs of staff, participated in the IDF’s “International Operational Innovation Conference” in Israel last week. On the sidelines of the conference, Kohavi sat down with Andrzejczak for a brief courtesy meeting.

In Poland, Kohavi will also visit the Nazi death camp Auschwitz-Birkenau, and hold a series of meetings with other officers of the Polish military “as part of the cooperation between the two militaries,” the IDF said.

In France, aside from Burkhard, Kohavi will also meet other senior French military officials.

“During the visit, issues related to regional challenges will be discussed, including the threat of the Iranian regime and its terrorist proxies throughout the Middle East, the weaponization of the Hezbollah terrorist army and the security challenges on the Lebanese border,” the IDF statement said.

France and Lebanon have close relations, as the Middle Eastern country was once part of the French colonial empire in the early 20th century.

Kohavi is to depart Sunday and will return to Israel on Thursday, according to a schedule published by the IDF. The visits to both nations are a first for Kohavi since he entered his role nearly four years ago.


"Coalition Islamist Party’s Hidden Charter Dedicated to Fighting Zionism"
Despite the intense media discourse surrounding the Ra’am party, which made it possible for the Lapid-Bennett coalition government to rule until it didn’t, there are few references to the charter of the Islamist movement in Israel, which is the foundation of Ra’am, religiously and politically.

According to Hakol Kayehudi, Ra’am leader Mansour Abbas in 2017 led the writing of the Islamic Movement’s Charter, a comprehensive and orderly document detailing the vision, objectives, strategy, and methods of operation of the Islamic movement, based on Islamic sources and the worldview of Abdullah Nimar Darwish, the founder of the Islamic movement in Israel.

By the way, Darwish was born in 1948, the year of the “Nakba,” and died on May 14, 2017, a day short of that year’s Nakba day. When you do research, weird stuff comes up.

The Israeli Islamist movement was founded in 1971, and in 1996 it split into two factions: the extremist northern faction and the more moderate southern faction. Here’s how the two differ:

The northern faction does not recognize the State of Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state, and advocates replacing it with a Muslim state, but is willing to use it for immediate needs.

The southern faction also does not recognize the State of Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state and would rather have an Islamic state in its place, but is willing to participate in the government and influence decisions from the inside.
Joe Truzman: A Newly Established Militant Organization in the West Bank Claims Several Attacks
A nascent Palestinian militant organization called The Lion’s Den (TLD) has been established in the West Bank and have publish statements claiming shooting attacks against Israel Defense Forces (IDF) troops.

In late Aug., TLD published their first official statement claiming responsibility for an armed clash against IDF soldiers in the Palestinian village of Rugib, located in the West Bank. Though, Palestinian media reported about the group’s activity on Aug. 15.

Days later, the organization held what appears to be its first rally in honor of two militants who were killed in late July during an armed clash with IDF troops operating in Nablus.

In the following weeks, TLD made several more claims of responsibility for shooting at IDF troops operating in the Balata camp, al-Ain camp, and detonating an IED inside Har Braha, south of Nablus.

On Sep. 9, Israeli police foiled a large-scale terrorist attack in southern Tel Aviv. The would-be terrorist was apprehended when he arose the suspicion of police officers. After his arrest, a rifle, two IEDs and a bandana bearing the logo of TLD was found on his person.

FDD’s Long War Journal reached out to an Israeli Police spokesperson for further information on the suspect’s possible affiliation to TLD and was told the investigation was being led by the General Security Services (Shin Bet) which prevented the spokesperson from commenting on the matter.

Lastly, on Tuesday morning, TLD published a statement and documentation claiming responsibility for a shooting attack against the Har Braha settlement near Nablus.

Not a lot is known about the organization’s background. Though, the Dheisheh camp, located south of Bethlehem, has often been referred to as “the lion’s den” suggesting the group may have originally been founded by members from the camp. Additionally, it remains unclear if TLD is a splinter organization of an established militant group such as Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad or al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades. However, there are some clues that suggest their affiliation to al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades.


The Israel Guy: Is the IDF is the MOST MORAL ARMY in the World?
Although terrorism has been steadily rising in Judea and Samaria over the last several years, the IDF is cracking down. Through Operation Break the Wave, the IDF has been regularly rooting out terorrism, especially in Northern Samaria, over the past several months. Through their dedicated operation, hundreds of attacks have been prevented.

Unfortunately, a tragic attack took place this week, in which IDF Maj. Bar Falah was killed in a gunfight with terrorists. The Fatah Islamic Party, which is in control of the Palestinian Authority even expressed their support for one of the terrorists who shot and killed IDF Officer Bar Falah. The terrorist was a PA security officer, trained and funded by the US and other countries. Fatah then went on to officially announce that they are returning to terrorism.


Israel to reopen northern West Bank checkpoints, days after deadly gun battle
Israeli authorities were set to reopen two checkpoints between Israel and the northern West Bank on Sunday, which were closed last week after two Palestinian gunmen opened fire at troops along the security barrier, killing a senior officer.

Israel’s military liaison to the Palestinians, widely known by its acronym COGAT, announced Saturday that the Jalamah and Salem checkpoints would reopen Sunday, following an assessment held by Defense Minister Benny Gantz.

Following Wednesday’s deadly shooting, Gantz also ordered to freeze the entry permits to Israel for residents of Kafr Dan, the hometown of the two gunmen, until further notice.

The restrictions on the entry permits were to remain in place, COGAT said Saturday.

Early Wednesday, Ahmed Abed and Abdul Rahman Abed, from the village near Jenin, were killed in a gun battle with Israeli troops who sought to arrest them, after they approached the West Bank security barrier.

The military suspected the two Palestinians were planning to ambush troops stationed at a nearby post.

On Thursday, troops mapped out the pair’s homes in Kafr Dan ahead of a potential demolition.
How will Russia’s poor Ukraine showing ripple in the Middle East?
This week’s stunning turn of events in the war in Ukraine was head-spinning, reflected in dramatic headlines in the media around the world.

“Ukraine is turning the tide against Russia,” declared one. “Ukrainian victory shatters Russia’s reputation as a military superpower,” shouted a second. “Russia withdraws more forces from northeast Ukraine as Kyiv presses advance,” read a third.

Seven months after the start of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the tide seemed to turn in the war, as Ukrainian forces registered victories in the northeast. In a symbolic action that seemed unimaginable a few months ago, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky visited the liberated town of Izium on Thursday, just 14 km. from the front.

With its bold counteroffensive, Ukraine regained thousands of square kilometers of territory, and pushed Russian forces out of countless towns and villages – including the strategic railway hub of Izium.

If the world was surprised at the initial difficulties the Russians faced when they invaded Ukraine in late February, if it was impressed by the Ukrainian ability to repel Russian advances on Kyiv and on April 2 force a Russian withdrawal from the capital, and if it was shocked by the sinking 12-days later of the Moskva, the flagship of Russia’s Black Sea fleet, then it was completely stunned by this current counteroffensive and the recent turn of events.

Moreover, these developments came at a most auspicious time, shortly before the weather in Europe is to change and tens of millions of Europeans will feel for themselves – in terms of rationing and blackouts – the impact of Moscow’s decision to cut off its gas supplies in retaliation for European sanctions.
Israel Attacks Damascus Airport, Five Soldiers Killed, Syria Says
Israel carried out an airstrike on Syria‘s Damascus International airport and other positions south of the capital, killing five soldiers and causing material damages, the ministry of defense said early on Saturday.

Syrian air defenses intercepted the attack and managed to down most of the missiles, a ministry statement said.

There was no immediate confirmation if the strike has affected airport operations.

Israel has intensified strikes on Syrian airports to disrupt Tehran’s increasing use of aerial supply lines to deliver arms to allies in Syria and Lebanon including Hezbollah, regional diplomatic and intelligence sources told Reuters.

Tehran has adopted air transport as a more reliable means of ferrying military equipment to its forces and allied fighters in Syria, following disruptions to ground transfers.
Hamas condemns Israeli strikes as it seeks to restore ties with Syria
Hamas said on Saturday that its stands with Syria in the face of the “recurring Israeli aggression on Syrian soil.”

Hamas condemned the missile strikes on Damascus International Airport on Friday night, which were reportedly carried out by Israel. Five Syrian soldiers were killed in the strikes, Syria’s official news agency Sana reported.

“The strikes against Syria are an extension of the Israeli aggression on the entire region,” said Hamas spokesperson Hazem Qassem.

The latest Hamas denunciation of the alleged Israeli strikes on Syria is seen as part of the Islamist movement’s efforts to restore its ties with the Syrian regime.

Hamas, Syria's Assad's shaky ties
Relations between Hamas, an off-shoot of the Muslim Brotherhood organization, and Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime deteriorated shortly after the beginning of the civil war in Syria.

Hamas leaders, some of whom were based in Syria, refused to side with the Assad regime against the opposition groups, most of which were affiliated with Islamist organizations. In 2012, the Hamas offices in Syria were closed and the leaders of the group moved to Qatar.

Last Thursday, Hamas issued a statement in which it voiced support for Syria in the face of attempts to “divide and fragment it and keep it away from its effective historical role, especially regarding the Palestinian cause.”
Give Iran Nukes, Says Quincy Institute’s New Iran Expert
Iran should be allowed to build a nuclear weapon, according to the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft's newest hire, Roxane Farmanfarmaian.

Farmanfarmaian, a policy analyst who focuses on Iran, earlier this month became a nonresident fellow at the isolationist think tank bankrolled by billionaires George Soros and Charles Koch. In a 2013 policy debate, Farmanfarmaian argued in favor of Iran building a nuclear bomb, saying the country would never use it to destroy Israel, even though the hardline regime has been threatening to do so for years and sponsors the top jihadist terrorists waging war on the Jewish state.

Farmanfarmaian joins a growing roster of Quincy Institute scholars who have pushed for increased engagement with Iran and promoted anti-Israel conspiracy theories from their perch at the think tank. This includes Trita Parsi, who formerly helmed the National Iranian American Council, a group accused of secretly lobbying on Iran's behalf, and Stephen Walt, a longtime Israel critic who has pushed conspiracy theories about the Jewish state. Like many of her Quincy Institute colleagues, Farmanfarmaian has downplayed the threat posed by a nuclear-armed Iran and argued that Israel should learn to live with the threat of an Iranian bomb.

"If Iran was to bomb Israel, it would destroy Jerusalem, the third-holiest site in Islam," Farmanfarmaian was quoted as saying during the debate, according to a press report published at the time. "It's inconceivable that Iran would bomb Israel because it would isolate it."

Israeli leaders and a wide array of regional experts disagree with this assertion.

Farmanfarmaian also argued in a 2020 op-ed published in the Nation that then-president Donald Trump's assassination of Iranian general Qassem Soleimani was "a colossal strategic blunder." Like other Quincy scholars and pro-Iran analysts, Farmanfarmaian argued the assassination would spark a global terror spree by Iran, a fear that never came to fruition.

She also described the general, who helmed Iran's regional terror operations, as "charismatic and highly effective."
‘Death to dictator’: Protests after funeral of Iran woman held by ‘morality police’
Protests continued Saturday in Iran, a day after a young woman died after she was arrested in Tehran by the notorious so-called “morality police.”

Mahsa Amini, 22, was on a visit with her family to the Iranian capital when she was detained on Tuesday by the police unit responsible for enforcing the Islamic Republic’s strict dress code for women, which includes the compulsory wearing of the headscarf in public. Amini was allegedly in violation of that law.

She died in hospital several days later.

Police said Amini suffered a heart attack, but activists said she suffered a blow to the head while in custody.

Hundreds gathered during her funeral Saturday in the city of Saqez in Kurdistan Province, and chanted “death to the dictator,” footage posted to social media showed.

Other videos following Amini’s burial showed Iranian security forces apparently opening fire and launching tear gas at protesters.


Canada changes program funding after giving thousands to entity linked to anti-Semitic posts
Canada says it will be instituting policy changes as it relates to funding programs through Canadian Heritage after it was revealed that money was going to an organization whose co-founder and main speaker has a history of anti-Semitism.

As JNS reported in late August, the Community Media Advocacy Centre had received more than $133,000 Canadian in federal funding for anti-racist education. Yet its co-founder, Laith Marouf, wrote hate-filled social-media posts, including one in which he wrote: “I have a motto: Life is too short for shoes with laces or for entertaining Jewish white supremacists with anything but a bullet to the head.”

Politicians, Jewish community officials and the media immediately began questioning how funding was ever allocated to the group for anti-racist education from the Canadian Heritage program, which spotlights arts, culture and related programs throughout the country.

Ahmed Hussen, Canada’s minister for housing and diversity and inclusion, the department that oversees the program, is implementing changes in hopes of ensuring that this does not happen again.

Among them is the plan to “review the social media not only of the organization but the [key] individuals,” such as the president and co-founder, which is what Marouf was, according to Arevig Afarian, a spokesperson for the minister’s office.

“In the age of social media, we cannot afford not to work with social-media people anymore,” she said.

There will also be increased diversity training for Canadian Heritage’s staff, said Afarian.
Yeshiva University halts student clubs in dispute over LGBT group
Yeshiva University, ordered by a judge to formally recognize an LGBT student group even as the Jewish school in New York City argues that doing so would violate its religious values, on Friday announced that it has halted the activities of all its undergraduate student clubs as it plans its next steps.

Yeshiva's announcement came two days after the US Supreme Court refused to block New York state judge Lynn Kotler's June ruling that the university is subject to a city anti-discrimination law and must recognize the club called YU Pride Alliance.

Citing upcoming Jewish holidays, Yeshiva said in an email to students that "the university will hold off on all undergraduate club activities while it immediately takes steps to follow the roadmap provided by the US Supreme Court to protect YU's religious freedom."

Katie Rosenfeld, a lawyer for YU Pride Alliance, said in a statement she is confident that "students will see through this shameful tactic and stand together in community."

Rosenfeld called the university's move to cancel all student club activities rather than accept one LGBT group on campus "a throwback to 50 years ago when the city of Jackson, Mississippi closed all public swimming pools rather than comply with court orders to desegregate."

Yeshiva did not specify the steps it planned to take.

The Supreme Court's order, in a 5-4 decision with four conservative justices dissenting, said the school could ask New York courts to expedite its appeal and seek relief from them, then return to the justices if its requests were denied. The high court cited "at least two further avenues for expedited or interim state court relief."


German public broadcaster now requiring employees to support Israel’s right to exist
Germany’s public broadcaster, Deutsche Welle, has revised its code of conduct to require support for Israel’s right to exist, and employees who fail to do so may now be fired.

The move announced Sept. 1 preceded a court order last week that DW reinstate a former employee who was fired after the company determined she had made comments about Israel that could be construed as antisemitic. In all, seven employees from the broadcaster’s Arabic service were let go last year on similar grounds, and so far two have successfully sued DW for reinstatement.

The revised conduct code appears to be timed to strengthen the company’s hand in such cases in the future. DW spokesperson Vera Tellmann told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency in an email that the company “is awaiting the reasons for the verdict in one case and reserves the right to take further legal action.”

DW is not the only German media company to expressly endorse Israel’s right to exist. In 1967, the Axel Springer company, one of Germany’s biggest media conglomerates that now owns Politico and Insider, established “corporate principles” that include “support [for] the Jewish people and the right of existence of the State of Israel.”

The DW code made public on Sept. 1 declares that “Germany’s historical responsibility for the Holocaust is also a reason for which we support the right of Israel to exist.”

It also adds that “discrimination of any kind, such as sexism, racism and antisemitism… can have consequences in terms of labor law, including dismissal.”

Tellmann told JTA that labor law consequences would be applied “depending on the severity of the violations.” Denial of Israel’s right to exist would be such a violation, she added.


New York museums to disclose artwork looted by Nazis
Museums in New York that exhibit artworks looted by Nazis during the Holocaust are now required by law to let the public know about those dark chapters in their provenance through placards displayed with the stolen objects.

At least 600,000 pieces of art were looted from Jewish people before and during World War II, according to experts. Some of that plunder wound up in the world’s great museums.

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul signed a law in August requiring museums to put up signs identifying pieces looted by the Nazis from 1933 through 1945.

The new rule comes as many museums in the U.S. and Europe are also reckoning with collections that contain numerous objects looted from Asia, Africa and other places during centuries of colonialism.

It isn't clear how many pieces of art now on display will wind up being labeled as Nazi loot, and disagreements have already arisen over certain artworks with a complicated history.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, in New York City, said it had identified 53 works in its collection as having been seized or sold under duress during the Nazi era.

All of those objects were obtained by the museum after being returned to their rightful owners. But Andrea Bayer, the museum’s deputy director for collections and administration, said the public still should know about their history.

“People should be aware of the terrible cost to people during World War II as these confiscations took place, and how these peoples’ treasures that they loved and had been in their families, had been torn from them at the same time their lives were disrupted,” she said.


Facebook bans, reverses decision on Holocaust movie ads that ‘violated’ race policy
Facebook on Friday reversed a ban on adverts for a Holocaust movie which it initially said had violated the social media site’s policies related to race.

Earlier this month, Joshua Newton, the director of Beautiful Blue Eyes, told Rolling Stone that Facebook notified the movie’s distributor that it had banned promoting or advertising the film on the platform.

Facebook said the movie’s title, which refers to the eye color of a child who was killed by the Nazis — a major scene in the movie — violated its policy against content that “includes direct or indirect assertions or implications about a person’s race.”

Newton told Rolling Stone that his parents are Holocaust survivors and the movie was based on his late father’s life.

“This is the action of haters, and there are sadly many in our society, who seek to damage the film in order to trivialize the Holocaust,” Newton told the news site. “Surely, Mark Zuckerberg did not intend this to happen,” he added.

The filmmakers appealed the ban, but Facebook initially upheld the decision.

“After a requested review of your Facebook account, we confirmed it didn’t comply with our Advertising Policies or other standards. You can no longer advertise using Facebook Products. This is our final decision,” a note to the movie’s distributor read, according to the report.

A Facebook post by the page of Beautiful Blue Eyes, September 11, 2022. (Screenshot: Facebook)

Facebook on Friday reversed a ban on adverts for a Holocaust movie which it initially said had violated the social media site’s policies related to race.

Earlier this month, Joshua Newton, the director of Beautiful Blue Eyes, told Rolling Stone that Facebook notified the movie’s distributor that it had banned promoting or advertising the film on the platform.

Facebook said the movie’s title, which refers to the eye color of a child who was killed by the Nazis — a major scene in the movie — violated its policy against content that “includes direct or indirect assertions or implications about a person’s race.”

Newton told Rolling Stone that his parents are Holocaust survivors and the movie was based on his late father’s life.

“This is the action of haters, and there are sadly many in our society, who seek to damage the film in order to trivialize the Holocaust,” Newton told the news site. “Surely, Mark Zuckerberg did not intend this to happen,” he added.

The filmmakers appealed the ban, but Facebook initially upheld the decision.

“After a requested review of your Facebook account, we confirmed it didn’t comply with our Advertising Policies or other standards. You can no longer advertise using Facebook Products. This is our final decision,” a note to the movie’s distributor read, according to the report.

The advertisements for the movie, including trailers were “permanently restricted.”

But following the Rolling Stone report, Facebook’s parent company Meta told Ars Technica that it had reversed the ban.

“We reviewed the ads and page in question and determined that the enforcement was made in error, so we lifted the restriction,” a spokesperson told the tech news site.






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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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