Tuesday, September 20, 2022

From Ian:

‘80 years after Holocaust, there is a price for Jewish blood’ - Shurat Hadin head
“80 years after the Holocaust, there is a price for Jewish blood,” Shurat Hadin director Nitsana Darshan-Leitner said Monday at the Jerusalem Post Conference in New York.

To exact a price from terrorists, “the private sector [needs] to take part in this war,” she said, rejecting the idea that fighting terrorism is solely the job of the government and the defense establishment. “The only way to fight terrorism is everyone together – me, you, everyone.”

Speaking on “The Price of Terror” panel along with Stuart Force, father of American terrorism victim Taylor Force, Darshan-Leitner said if you see “a lawless regime, terrorism is on the rise.”

“Shurat Hadin was established to choke off the pipeline of the money of terrorism to make sure no one is killing Jews” and doesn’t pay a price, she said.

“Private people built the State of Israel; private people keep it safe,” she added.

Force talked about how he became involved in the campaign against the Palestinians' “pay for slay” policy, in which the Palestinian Authority pays money to terrorists who have killed Israelis.

“There was a program in place – ‘pay for slay,’” he said. “I knew something had to be done.”

Force said when Darshan-Leitner approached him to file lawsuits, he immediately came onboard.
The Cold, Hard Truth About Ben & Jerry’s
Yet Cohen and Greenfield seem to be suffering from convenient memory loss — and, conspicuously, not one journalist cited the actual text of the agreement negotiated in April 2000.

Unilever’s $326 million acquisition of Ben & Jerry’s Homemade Inc. was the subject of complex negotiations, resulting in a lengthy document regulating both company’s rights and obligations down to the last detail. In point of fact, Richard Goldstein — who, as then-president of Unilever USA, served as the global organization’s chief negotiator — once called it “by far the most unique deal” he was ever involved in.

Under the terms of the sales contract, as published by the US Securities and Exchange Commission, Unilever was given control over the “financial and operational aspects” of Ben & Jerry’s. Meanwhile, the independent board only retained responsibility “with respect to the enhancement of the Social Mission Priorities…of the Company, as they may evolve, and the preservation of the essential integrity of the Ben & Jerry’s brand-name.”

The agreement does not grant the independent board the explicit authority to withdraw Ben & Jerry’s from countries it disagrees with. Schedule 6.14, an addendum to the merger deal that clarifies some of the firm’s social objectives, lists everything from promoting “sustainable agriculture efforts” to continuing “the purchase of non-rBGH milk and cream primarily from Vermont farms,” but — crucially — does not mention geopolitics.

Moreover, the contract limits the board’s discretion within the bounds of “commercial reasonableness.” And one can hardly deny that effectively boycotting a market of 9.2 million consumers impacts the financial and operational aspects of Ben & Jerry’s, especially in light of the massive monetary repercussions Unilever has faced due to counter-boycotts.

At the same time, it is imperative to note that Cohen and Greenfield explicitly agreed to “use commercially reasonable efforts to obtain (at [Ben & Jerry’s] expense) for [Unilever] the right to conduct all facets of the Business in Israel.” Legal experts have pointed out that, “as a matter of contract law, a highly generalized contractual provision giving Ben and Jerry’s board the final say on amorphous ‘social mission priorities’ cannot override a specific and tangible legal commitment to conduct business in Israel.”

This prompts the question: did MSNBC and Mehdi Hasan fail to do their due diligence or are they letting Cohen and Greenfield actively mislead the show’s 443,00 viewers about the Ben & Jerry’s “cone-undrum”?

As HonestReporting detailed in a July 31 piece, Ben & Jerry’s refusal to back down on this issue is indicative of how its board views Israel as uniquely bad, even as the famously “woke” company continues to sell ice cream in the disputed territories of Cyprus and Gibraltar.
Activism vs. Journalism Contrasting the Ben & Jerry Interviews of Mehdi Hasan and Alexi McCammond
NBC News’ biography of Mehdi Hasan claims he is “an award-winning journalist known for riveting one-on-one conversations.” However, Hasan fell far short of “award-winning journalism” during his recent segment interviewing the cofounders of Ben & Jerry’s. This is particularly evident when one contrasts his interview with that of Axios’ Alexi McCammond, who delivered a masterclass while interviewing the same subjects just last year. While the latter handled her interview with a professional focus on getting her subjects to address and dig into the issues, the former seemed focused on preserving his preferred narrative.

Both interviews dealt with Ben & Jerry’s decision to stop selling ice cream in the West Bank, a decision which effectively meant it would stop selling ice cream to the entirety of the Jewish state, not just settlements.

Consider just this portion which Hasan proudly tweeted, when he asks Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield:
“Then a lot of bad faith actors try to claim that not wanting to sell Ben and Jerry’s ice cream in the occupied territories illegally occupied is somehow anti-Jewish antisemitic. As someone yourself who is Jewish but who’s been critical of Israel’s occupation for many years now, what is your response to those critics?”

Putting aside Hasan’s obsession with tokenism and mocking concerns of antisemitism, his question is, professionally speaking, unserious. It begins with Hasan describing Ben & Jerry’s critics as “bad faith actors.” That is, he begins by portraying the story as good faith truth versus bad faith slander. There is then no subsequent genuine effort to unpack the criticisms, explore the arguments, and allow for his audience to get an honest assessment of the competing narratives.

Note that this isn’t for lack of time. Indeed, the Mehdi Hasan interview ran about five minutes, the same length as that of the relevant portion of the Axios interview.

Police say ‘terror’ behind murder of 84-year-old woman in Holon, suspect at large
An 84-year-old woman was killed on a street in the Tel Aviv suburb of Holon Tuesday evening, in what police described as “a terror attack,” as they sought the public’s help in finding the suspected killer.

The suspect was identified by authorities as Mousa Sarsour, a 28-year-old Palestinian from Qalqilya. Police issued a photo of Sarsour and asked for the public’s help in locating him.

“It was a suspect whose identity is known to us,” police chief Kobi Shabtai told reporters. “We are currently searching close by and further away to locate him.”

Anyone with knowledge of Sarsour’s whereabouts was asked to dial 100 and provide the information to police.

The woman was attacked with a blunt object to the head in the central city’s HaHashmonaim Street in broad daylight sometime before 6:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Police were called to the scene after a neighbor heard the woman’s screams, arriving to find her seriously wounded after being attacked.

In the following hours, officials said the Shin Bet, Israel’s internal security agency, was involved in the investigation amid growing suspicions that the woman was attacked for nationalistic reasons.

Reports said CCTV footage showed a man wearing dark clothes trailing the elderly woman as she walked toward her house, before attacking her from behind, striking multiple blows using a “heavy object” before fleeing the scene. Nothing was stolen from the woman.
South Carolina treasurer declines ratings call with investment firm Morningstar in ‘solidarity with Israel’
South Carolina’s state treasurer is declining to participate in an annual ratings call with Chicago-based investment firm Morningstar due to reports that the company has an anti-Israel bias in its investment risk ratings system.

Treasurer Curtis Loftis announced on Thursday that he would sit out this year’s rating call for the state’s 529 plan with Morningstar. A 529 plan is an investment account used to save for educational expenses.

“Our state does not support businesses that are involved in the boycott, divestment or sanctions of Israel. As such, we are unwilling to do business with Morningstar until we can be assured their decisions are based on sound financial data and investment policies, and not a radical agenda that has nothing to do with the Treasurer’s fiduciary responsibility to maximize returns at a prudent level of risk for the benefit of our citizens,” said Loftis.

South Carolina is among the 19 states whose attorneys general have opened investigations into whether Morningstar violated consumer-protection laws and anti-boycott laws with its evaluations of companies’ performance on environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues.

Critics allege that Morningstar subsidiary Sustainalytics utilizes openly anti-Israel sources and gives them extra weight in formulating its ESG risk ratings, singling out Israel and the territories it controls over other conflict zones or disputed territories.

Are all progressive college students anti-Israel?
A new in-depth study in three different US cities shows that young progressive college students were a lot more positive toward Israel than had been assumed. When an Israeli non-profit targeted these students, with a modest sum of $30,000, they found that within a month’s time, the support for Israel rose substantially.

“In March 2022, we deployed a survey to discover how progressive Black & Latina Gen Z college students feel about Israel,” Vibe Israel founder & CEO Joanna Landau told The Jerusalem Post in an interview.

“Our target audience was minority, progressive college students: They are future decision-makers," she said. "Soon they will dominate public opinion, write policy and lead movements. They are the most connected and culturally diverse generation ever. Are their opinions still able to be informed? Can we get them on our side? Do loud negative voices represent overall opinions?”

They hired a firm that surveyed a sample of 900 Black and Latino college-aged students in progressive US markets. “We hired a Chicago-based company and decided we're going to take three hotspots where there are a lot of this particular demographic; Atlanta, San Francisco and Miami," Landau said. "In Miami we mainly surveyed Hispanic; in Atlanta we surveyed mainly African-Americans and in San Francisco the left-wing progressives.”

Landau explained that all three subgroups surveyed “define themselves as progressive,” and were aged 18 to 24, adding that they made sure that these young Americans surveyed were college students or graduates.

“We asked them some very simple questions about Israel,” the Vibe Israel head recalled. "Examples are: what's the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Israel? Would you buy an Israeli product? What are your general perceptions of Israel? And: have you seen anything about Israel online recently?"
MEMRI: U.S. Rep. Rashida Tlaib On Al-Jazeera: Israel Has An Apartheid System, We Need To Change Our Policies Towards It; I Don't See How A Two-State Solution Can Work
U.S. Representative Rashida Tlaib (D-Michigan) said in a September 16, 2022 interview on Al-Jazeera Network that she does not see how a two-state solution for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict can work. She said that Israel has an "apartheid system" and that the U.S. must change its policies towards it.

"I Don't Believe There Is A Pathway For A Two-State [Solution] With The Apartheid System That Is Happening In Israel Right Now"

Rep. Rashida Tlaib: "[J Street] wants a two-state solution, and I always say that it is up to the Israelis and the Palestinians to decide what their fate and determination is, and they are moving more towards a one-state [solution] than supporting that.

"But I knew the two-state solution and the strong stance that they had, it just didn't match. But they very much... I still work with them. They agree that I have a unique lens and perspective on what is happening in Palestine. We have a good working relationship, but they know that I don't believe there is a pathway — I mean, somebody can show me how... But I don't believe there is a pathway for a two-state [solution] with the apartheid system that is happening in Israel right now.

"We keep saying that we're going to have a two-state [solution], and all we see is the complete opposite. We have apartheid now. I don't know how we achieve it. I don't know how we do it when we keep segregating the communities from each other.

"We Need To Change Our Policies When It Comes To The State Of Israel"

"We need to change our policies when it comes to the State of Israel. We desperately need to look at it [through] a different lens. Because it is obvious that you cannot claim that you are a democracy, and then say: 'You, an American citizen' — the country that gives you the most aid — 'you can't come into our country, because you support these issues.'"

ANALYSIS: Russian Trolls To Blame for Everything Bad (That Happens to Democrats)
When bad things happen to Democratic politicians, their crackhead sons, or prominent liberal activists, the mainstream media rush in—like firefighters to a burning building—and find out who is really to blame. In most cases, the culprit is a crooked alliance of evil Republicans, gullible American voters, and Russian trolls spewing disinformation on the internet.

Consider, for example, the headline of a New York Times report published on Sunday: "How Russian Trolls Helped Keep the Women's March Out of Lock Step." The Times heavily implies that Russian trolls played a major role in the anti-Semitism scandal that engulfed the Women's March during the Trump administration. The report laments that Women's March cofounder Linda Sarsour, a left-wing activist with a flair for anti-Semitism, was "targeted" by several dozen Russian social media accounts that posted "10 or 20 times per day" in an effort to highlight the organization's ties to Louis Farrakhan and other anti-Semites.

The article does not specify what role the Russians might have played in terms of forcing Sarsour to write that "nothing is creepier than Zionism" while promoting a video denouncing Israel as an apartheid state comparable to Iran and North Korea, among her many other controversial public statements. Sarsour and another Women's March cofounder, Tamika Mallory, were public supporters of Farrakhan's organization, the Nation of Islam. Mallory once described Farrakhan, who has denounced Jews as "termites" and said Adolf Hitler was a "very great man," as "the GOAT," or "greatest of all time," and reportedly suggested that Jewish organizers of the Women's March needed to confront the role of Jews in perpetuating racism.

It remains unclear the extent to which Russian trolls compelled a spokesman for Joe Biden's presidential campaign to issue a statement noting that the then-candidate "obviously condemns [Sarsour's] views," including her support for the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement, which aims to weaken the Jewish state's economy. "Joe Biden has been a strong supporter of Israel and a vehement opponent of anti-Semitism his entire life," campaign spokesman Andrew Bates wrote in August 2020 after Sarsour participated in a livestream event with Democratic activists.

A number of prominent anti-Semites, including Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D., Mich.), condemned the Biden campaign for attempting to disavow Sarsour. "I am so sick and tired of folks going after @lsarsour and other Palestinian activists for speaking the truth about oppression and injustice," Tlaib wrote. Earlier this year, the congresswoman spoke at a rally alongside Osama Siblani, an anti-Israel activist who has praised terrorist groups such as Hamas and Hezbollah and called on Arabs around the world to "fight" the Jewish state with "stones," "guns," or "their bare hands."

In 2018, Sarsour rushed to defend Tlaib's fellow Squad member, Rep. Ilhan Omar (D., Minn.), who was widely condemned for making anti-Semitic comments, by accusing Omar's critics of demonstrating their "allegiance to Israel." The American Jewish Committee, presumably egged on by Russian trolls, issued a statement slamming Sarsour's inflammatory remarks. "Accusing Jews of dual loyalty is one of the oldest and most pernicious anti-Semitic tropes," the group wrote on Twitter. "No surprise to see it coming from @LSarsour. How long will progressive leaders continue to look the other way in the face of this hate?"

The Times report was based on data provided by Advance Democracy Inc., a nonprofit group whose founder Daniel Jones has ties to the discredited "Steele dossier" that purported to reveal that Donald Trump colluded with Vladimir Putin to rig the 2016 election. This information was not disclosed in the article.

WATCH: J Street Rabbi Has ‘Fangirl Moment’ During Chance Encounter With Anti-Semitic Dictator
Turkish strongman Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has repeatedly denounced Israel as a "terrorist state," met an unlikely admirer during his stroll through Manhattan over the weekend. Rabbi Rachel Goldenberg of Queens, N.Y., a prominent supporter of the liberal advocacy group J Street, had a "fangirl moment" upon encountering the notorious anti-Semitic dictator in Central Park.

"Oh my gosh," the starstruck rabbi said in a video recorded by Turkish propaganda operatives. "Really? Can I shake your hand?" Goldenberg's reaction was rather unusual, given that Erdogan has been widely condemned for his anti-Semitic rants. In 2021, for example, he denounced Jews as "murderers" who "kill children" and "only are satisfied by sucking their blood."

The House Anti-Semitism Task Force issued a statement blasting Erdogan's anti-Semitic remarks as "tantamount to blood libel against the Jewish people." The U.S. State Department called the comments "reprehensible." Several months after the Turkish leader's anti-Jewish tirade, a Turkish man who called Erdogan a "Jew" was sentenced to 10 months in prison for insulting the dictator's "honor, dignity, and reputation."

Erdogan was "warmly welcomed" during his stroll through Central Park, according to the Turkish propaganda outlet Daily Sabah. Alas, the fawning encounter with Goldenberg was not mentioned by the pro-government media apparatus, presumably for anti-Semitic reasons.

J Street, which claims to be a "pro-Israel" organization, has been criticized for attacking Israel and defending anti-Semites. The advocacy group has repeatedly lobbied to roll back sanctions on Iran and defended Rep. Ilhan Omar (D., Minn.) in 2019 after the Squad member made a series of anti-Semitic statements. J Street communications director Logan Bayroff said Omar's critics, which included Democrats as well as Republicans, were "reckless" and "politically motivated."

Suspension of ‘Antisemitic’ College Paper Editor Denounced By Student Groups
Students at University of Adelaide in Australia have issued a statement denouncing the suspension of a school magazine editor over accusations that she harassed Jewish students.

On Tuesday, the university’s student union, YouX, announced its decision to dismiss Habibah Jaghoori from On Dit, explaining that her “conduct and behavior” after publishing an article calling for the destruction of Israel “would be perceived by any fair-minded person to be threatening the welfare of students at our university.”

On Monday, students representing several university clubs — including Student Representative Council, Socialist Alternative, Uni Students for Climate Justice, and Students for Palestine — charged that Jaghoori’s suspension has brought the campus community into “shame and disrepute.”

“We view this as exceptionally malicious given that circumstance of the editor, a Muslim woman, having to justify herself in the face of defenses of a genocidal and apartheid state that regularly uses racism and Islamophobia as a justification for a justification for its ethnic cleansing and violence,” their statement said.

On Dit also criticized YouX’s suspension of Jaghoori and vowed to continue recognizing her as an editor.

“She has an unwavering drive to stand against injustice, even at a personal cost,” the paper said on Facebook. “Habibah…ensures On Dit is not a white space, but a space for the stories and realities of People of Colour.”
The Antisemitic Rot at CUNY is Institutional
Far from taking these concerns seriously, CUNY officials have instead adopted a pattern of rubbing it in the Jewish community’s face. Assigning Abd Alla as chief diversity officer to investigate such complaints, notwithstanding her past with the CAIR, is only one example.

A graphic by CAMERA on Campus promoting the adoption of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s definition of antisemitism.

At Kingsborough Community College (KCC), an advocate of the antisemitic Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement was recently appointed to its Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion search committee, which included not a single Jewish member. This came despite repeated inquiries to KCC President Claudia Schrader, from the KCC professor who was the subject of the EEOC determination, as to what steps were being taken to ensure the committee’s decisions would protect observant and Zionist Jews.

In a complaint filed by the Brandeis Center over antisemitism at the University of Vermont, for which the OCR just opened an investigation, attorneys Alyza Lewin and Denise Katz-Prober eloquently explained why harassment of Jews for their Zionism is unlawfully discriminatory:
“Zionism is as integral to Judaism as observing the Jewish Sabbath or maintaining a kosher diet. Of course, not all Jews observe the Sabbath or keep kosher, but those who do clearly are expressing important components of their Jewish identity. Similarly, not all Jews are Zionists. But for many Jews, including many Jewish students at UVM, identifying with and expressing support for the Jewish homeland is also a sincere and deeply felt expression of their Jewish ethnic identity. Harassing, marginalizing, demonizing, and excluding these Jewish students on the basis of the Zionist component of their Jewish identity is just as unlawful and discriminatory as attacking a Jewish student for observing the Sabbath or keeping kosher.”

At CUNY, the antisemitism is comprehensive. In addition to the rampant “anti-Zionism,” such as blaming “the Zionist administration” for tuition costs, faculty groups have also engaged in discriminatory actions like intentionally holding meetings on the Jewish Sabbath in order to exclude observant Jews.

That CUNY’s “chief diversity officer” comes from an organization which is avowedly “anti-Zionist” (and which tells followers to “pay attention” to synagogues because the “polite Zionists” are “not your friends”) demonstrates the antisemitic rot is not only deep, but institutional. It also evidences a disturbing reality that at least in this case, academia is not an ally in the fight against antisemitism. To the contrary, the CUNY system itself appears to be the problem.

Why the BBC needs to update its Fatah profile
Back in November 2013 we observed that “the various articles and backgrounders on the subjects of Fatah and the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades appearing on the BBC website are notable for the fact that the more recent the article, the more the connection between the political and military wings of Fatah is downplayed”.

The BBC profile of Fatah that is currently available online has not been updated in over eleven years. It includes the following claims:
“The second intifada saw a number of armed groups associated with Fatah emerge, most notably the al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades. The Brigades are neither officially recognised nor openly backed by Fatah, though members often belong to the political faction.”

In February of this year we noted that a BBC report had described the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades as “The military wing of the Palestinian Fatah faction” and in August visitors to the BBC News website were told that “The al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades is a network of militias linked to Fatah, the Palestinian movement which controls the West Bank”.

Clearly that profile of Fatah needs to be updated given that the BBC has apparently at last recognised that it has a “military wing”.

One year after incident, Jewish civil servant finally gets apology over HR failure
A civil servant who works in a Whitehall Department attended a talk last year delivered by the Head of Human Resources (HR) of their unit. During the talk, the speaker, who is themself from an ethnic minority, said that when they worked at a different Ministry, they were the only senior leader from an ethnic minority.

In the question and answer segment at the end of the presentation, the civil servant gently raised the point that the Permanent Secretary of that Ministry at the time was Jewish, but the Head of HR brushed away the civil servant’s comment, claiming that they had merely been talking about senior leadership in the HR department, which apparently was clearly not the case.

The civil servant, who has understandably requested anonymity, followed up the incident with an e-mail to the Head of HR who delivered the presentation and also wrote separately to the CEO of the Department. The civil servant, who is Jewish, was then told that they had acted in a “shocking” manner and that the query had “felt like an attack”. The civil servant later spoke again to the Head of HR who told them, in no uncertain terms, that they did not view Jews as an ethnic minority.

The civil servant felt that the incident caused them considerable distress and discomfort at their place of work, without recourse to the very department – human resources – that should be available in such circumstances. Moreover, they felt that their ethnic identity had been marginalised and belittled.

The civil servant occupied a relatively junior position in the civil service at the time and, notwithstanding the professional risks, spent some time trying to resolve this issue with senior management, to no avail. No apology was forthcoming and the senior management refused to acknowledge that any mistake had been made, even as certain leading figures in the unit were recognised across the larger organisation for their work on inclusion and diversity.
Elbit wins $76 million deal for electronic warfare training
Elbit Systems received a contract for $76 million to supply an electronic warfare training capability for an air force in an unnamed Asia-Pacific country, the Israeli firm announced Sept. 13.

It is common for Israeli defense companies not to identify some customers, and Elbit would not elaborate on which country acquired the capability.

“What we have seen in the last years is a sharp increase in the importance that armed forces place on electronic warfare,” David Vaaknin, vice president and head of corporate communications at Elbit, told Defense News. “Militaries are seeing what has happened in conflict zones where Russia and China are involved and how they operate and how vulnerable platforms are to electronic warfare attacks.”

“Training for EW is also part of this [trend]. It’s not enough to have the technological capability,” he added. “What we provide under this recent contract [is] a solution that enables air forces to train and test their equipment in a real threat-rich EW environment.”

This means pilots using Elbit’s training technology will face realistic threats in flight. “It’s not a simulation; it’s an actual attack. The experience is much closer to what they will face in the battle zone,” he said.

After each drill, the pilot and air force personal can see and analyze the results.

This latest contract builds on Elbit’s previous sales of electronic warfare systems as well as its role in training and providing technological advancements to the Israel Defense Forces. In 2013, the company won a $115 million contract to provide an unnamed Asian country with multipurpose, land-based electronic warfare systems. It also received an $85 million contract from an unnamed European customer in 2018 for a land-based EW system.
Movie About Female Arab and Jewish City Workers Emerges as Israel’s Oscar Entry
An Israeli film about Arab and Jewish municipal workers who participate in a video workshop won best picture at Israel’s Ophir Awards on Sunday, automatically qualifying as the Jewish state’s selection for consideration for a nomination in the best international feature category at the Academy Awards.

In “Cinema Sabaya,” from filmmaker Orit Fouks Rotem, a group of female city workers take part in a video workshop, hosted by a young filmmaker, and document their lives. “With each raw homemade footage shot by the women and shared with the others, the group dynamic forces them to challenge their views and beliefs as they get to know each other and themselves better,” according to the film’s synopsis.

“I think that the film offers a rare glimpse to the hidden depths of the lives of Jewish and Palestinian women, where their central point of convergence, the most profound thing they had in common, is simply being a woman,” said Rotem. “This turned to be stronger than their religion or cultural world. I hope the film will offer an intimate and empowering conversation, not ignoring the different backgrounds, but rather proving that this does not provide an obstacle in creating deep connections and true friendships. Women who want their stories to be heard, but are scared, or are unable, to tell them in the first person. Therefore, this is a film that also deals with the power of cinema.”

“Cinema Sabaya” took home a total of five wins at the Ophir Awards, including best director for Rotem, best costume, best casting and best supporting actress for Joanna Said, who plays an Arab woman who wants to get a driver’s license and become independent of her husband. The film was also the winner of the best debut feature film award and the audience award at the 2021 Jerusalem Film Festival.

Israeli tech rescues Caribbean beaches from eco disaster

Israeli Researchers Find Evidence of Earliest Use of Opium in Ceramic Vessels Excavated at Ancient Burial Site
Israeli archeological researchers have found evidence of the earliest use of opium in ceramic vessels excavated from a burial site by the ancient Canaanites near the outskirts of Tel Aviv on the coastal plain.

The researchers discovered traces of opium in pottery vessels dating back to the 14th century BCE, which they believe were used in burial rituals by the ancient Canaanites or as an offering for the dead in the afterlife. The vessels, shaped like a closed and inverted poppy flower, were initially found during an excavation by the Israel Antiquities Authority at Tel Yehud back in 2012, which led to the discovery of a number of Canaanite graves from the Late Bronze Age.

In the latest joint study conducted by the Weizmann Institute of Science, Tel Aviv University and the Israel Antiquities Authority, researchers analyzed organic residue in eight of the vessels which revealed traces of opium, some produced locally and some made in Cyprus, according to the findings published in July in the journal Archaeometry.

The researchers believe that the findings may contribute to the long-standing debate among scholars about the exact human use of chemicals in the ancient near east and offer some insight into the burial rituals of the ancient world. According to the study, the opium was most likely used in a number of ways: for medicinal, cultic and ritualistic purposes.
Israel’s population climbs toward 10 million mark, statistics bureau says
Ahead of the Jewish New Year, Israel’s population stands at just over 9.5 million residents, the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) said in data released on Tuesday.

According to the statistics, 9.593 million people live in the country. Of those, 7.069 million (74 percent) are Jewish, 2.026 million (21%) are Arab and 498,000 (5%) are neither.

The government agency said the population was expected to reach 10 million by the end of 2024, around 15 million by 2048, and 20 million by the end of 2065.

Among Jews aged 20 and over in Israel, 45.3 percent define themselves as secular, 19.2% traditional but not very observant, 13.9% are traditional-religious, 10.7% are religious and 10.5% Haredi.

The population of Israel grew by around 187,000 people since Rosh Hashanah 2021, at a rate of 1.8%, a slight increase on last year.
Two-thirds of this year’s 50,500 new immigrants linked to war in Ukraine
Since the beginning of the year, 38,202 new immigrants from Ukraine, Russia, and Belarus have become Israeli citizens, driving a 148 percent increase in overall immigration over the same nine-month period in 2021, according to Immigration and Absorption Minister Pnina Tamano-Shata.

In addition to new Israelis, 1,011 potential immigrants from the three countries affected by the late February Russian invasion of Ukraine arrived in Israel, alongside nearly 38,500 Ukrainian refugees who do not qualify for Israeli citizenship, according to a spokesperson for the Welfare Ministry, which is responsible for refugees.

From January to September 2021, Israel welcomed only 20,360 new immigrants. The 50,500 new Israelis so far in 2022 contribute to a decade of about 323,000 immigrants to Israel under the Law of Return.

Russia provided half of 2022’s new immigrants, with 23,789 documented immigrations. Ukrainians taking on Israeli citizenship followed with 13,097, and a much smaller number — 1,316 — of Belarussians.

Nevertheless, “tens of thousands” of Jews in Russia are still waiting to emigrate, Tamano-Shata said, although she would not commit to a specific number.
Beautiful moment in Israel
WATCH: Members of the Japanese Makuya religious movement wave the flags of Israel and Japan as they gather in Jerusalem to express their support towards the Jewish State.

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