Tuesday, October 25, 2022

From Ian:

The New Progressivism Makes No Room for Jews
In 2016, as “intersectionality” escaped from academia to become a progressive buzzword—and came to to signify a doctrine that all just causes are linked and complementary—David L. Bernstein began to suspect that it was apt to be used against the Jews. As he pointed out in an article published that year, activists argued under the banner of intersectionality that anyone opposed to racism in the U.S. should also oppose the existence of Israel. He thought, however, that there was hope:
While I didn’t say so explicitly, I’d come to believe that the mainstream Jewish community needed to find a way to include the Jewish narrative in the intersectional matrix—to complicate it—so that Jews and Israel were not viewed as the perennial oppressors and Palestinians the perennial victims. Concerned about the growing backlash to my article, I used the opportunity [to participate in a panel discussion with some of my critics] to soften my stance on the topic, stating “I still have much to learn,” and that “intersectionality is a complex, interesting, and nuanced phenomenon that we need to understand, not just from the perspective of the pro-Israel community, but from its own perspective as well.”

Bernstein, at the time still president of the left-leaning Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA), soon learned that there was little room for such a compromise position:
[In 2020], the JCPA pulled together a Zoom meeting for a coalition called Jews for Criminal Justice Reform, which included top Jewish criminal-justice activists from around the country. After an inspiring talk by Paul Fishman—a former federal attorney from New Jersey—on the need to end mass incarceration, we broke up into smaller groups to discuss next steps. A lawyer named Jared, the group facilitator for my breakout session, asked, “What do you all think our criminal-justice reform priorities ought to be?” Ariella, a young professional staffer from a Jewish civil-rights organization, interjected, “Before we talk about strategy, there’s a lot of internal work we have to do in the Jewish community. We need to recognize our complicity in white supremacy and ensure we have black Jews at the forefront of these efforts.”

More and more, that’s how it is now: a young staff person holding the work process hostage until we recite some prescribed litany of woke pieties. What, pray tell, did Ariella think all this self-reflection would do to help black people get out of being jailed for low-level drug charges? I suspect she didn’t have a clue. And as things turned out, our breakout session never discussed a single criminal-justice reform measure.

In short, Bernstein discovered that there is no room in this brand of progressive ideology to see Jews as anything but oppressors, and for Jews to do anything but proclaim their own imagined sins. This discovery is the subject of his newly published book, Woke Antisemitism.
How did a radical Islamist fool the West? - analysis
Many articles written about Qaradawi after his death emphasized his condemnation of al-Qaeda and ISIS and his moderate rulings permitting certain Western conduct for Muslims living as minorities in Western countries.

These articles portrayed him as many Westerners wanted to see him: a widely accepted authentic Islamic scholar who wanted to dialogue with the West and rejected violence.

However, the intelligence center noted that many of these articles left out that he helped shape “the concept of violent jihad,” especially justifying “carrying out terror attacks, including suicide bombing attacks, against Israeli citizens, the US forces in Iraq, and some of the Arab regimes.”

Qaradawi supported violent jihad and suicide bombing attacks against Israeli civilians. He was a source of supreme religious authority for Hamas at a time when many Islamic scholars still prohibited suicide of any kind.

Qaradawi claimed that violence was a legitimate expression of the so-called “resistance” and that Israel was a militaristic society in which every civilian is a potential soldier, said the report.

His antisemitism was not limited to Israel, with the report saying he frequently expressed antisemitic statements worldwide and even issued a fatwa authorizing attacks on Jews around the world.

In that fatwa, “he claimed that there is no essential difference between Judaism and Zionism, and therefore every Jewish target equals an Israeli target,” according to the report.
‘The Squad’ urges Biden administration to negotiate ceasefire in Ukraine
30 Democratic US Congressmembers – most notably the young progressives who have become colloquially known as “The Squad” – penned a letter to President Joe Biden’s administration on Monday in which they ask the administration to avoid direct military conflict and attempt to bring Russia and Ukraine to a ceasefire.

“Given the catastrophic possibilities of nuclear escalation and miscalculation, which only increase the longer this war continues, we agree with your goal of avoiding direct military conflict as an overriding national-security priority,” the letter read. A call for diplomacy

The congress members noted the difficulties involved in a settlement, particularly with the issue of annexed territories in the east of Ukraine, though they also mentioned Biden’s commitment to end the war. While no concrete plan of action was presented in the letter, the congress members suggested that easing sanctions against Russia would be a natural step to take.

“Such a framework would presumably include incentives to end hostilities, including some form of sanctions relief, and bring together the international community to establish security guarantees for a free and independent Ukraine that are acceptable for all parties, particularly Ukrainians.”

“The alternative to diplomacy is a protracted war, with both its attendant certainties and catastrophic and unknowable risks,” the letter continues.

The signers of the letter also pointed to the food and commodity crises brought upon by the war as reasons to seek an end to the war. “Economists believe that if the situation in Ukraine is stabilized, some of the speculative concerns driving higher fuel costs will subside and likely lead to a drop in world oil prices.”

The creepiness of anti-Israel activists’ cultural appropriation claims - opinion
SO AS they arrived in Israel, these foods that may have previously been considered Egyptian or Tunisian also became Israeli because these were recipes that Jews cooked and enjoyed for thousands of years. The cultural melting pot that is Israel enabled grandmothers, who had recipes passed down for generations, to share and remix those recipes from other countries to create the Israeli cuisine we know today.

Look no further than the personal website of Assaf Granit, the only Israeli chef to hold a Michelin star. On his website he writes, “my grandmother’s story is one that tells of the heritage of [Jerusalem] cooking... she learned to cook from her grandmother... the food she cooked came from the eastern European shtetl... when she came to Jerusalem she found herself in an entirely new world. Her neighbors came from all over the world and, like herself, received all their culinary education from their grandmothers... the woman next door was born in Morocco and taught her how to use saffron. A woman down the street came from Yemen and she taught her how to make malawah.”

This is the story of Israeli cuisine. A story of wandering, integrating and developing delicious recipes that were passed down from generation to generation. A story of a lost people returning home and meeting brothers and sisters from the world over with their own recipes and cultures, and sharing them. A story of a people working in unison to create a society and a culture that brings together the best parts of their exile to create a uniquely Jewish and a uniquely Israeli culinary culture. This is the story of Israeli cuisine, not the manufactured stories anti-Israel activists try to conjure.

This form of conjecture surpasses the age-old antisemitism and is a type of hate in its own class. It is a weird obsession with ensuring that the collective history of the Jewish people is erased in an effort to rid us of our land. It is an effort to deny the history of Mizrahi and Sephardi Jews, who lived for generations in harmony among their Arab neighbors, perfecting these classic recipes. It is racist and is rooted in nothing but hate.

Sadly, we are forced to respond to these accusations from our enemies, only because they are given large platforms to spread their vitriol. I hope going forward we can collectively work to silence these hateful and creepy voices that work tirelessly to undermine our history and identity.
NYC Issues ‘Halal Guide” Featuring Terror Mosques
Before the 21st anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks, New York City issued an official “Halal Guide” to its landmarks and tourist attractions.

The guide, featuring Muslim women in hijabs in front of skyscrapers, informs us that Muslims are “making an indelible mark on the City” and boasts of the “over 275 mosques spread across all five boroughs—more than any other metro area in the US”. That’s almost one mosque for every 9 people murdered in and around the World Trade Center by Islamic terrorists.

The guide, to its credit, begins its Manhattan section with the 9/11 Memorial in its “Must See & Do” section, but that’s probably in alphabetical order. Beyond halal eateries, it seems clueless about what Muslims might want to do in New York City, recommending a visit to an “avant-garde theater” in a warehouse featuring a production of 4:48 Psychosis, a play by a suicidal British playwright who then killed herself. The play was described as a “75-minute suicide note”.

That might also be a good description of New York City’s decision to issue a Halal Guide.

The Halal Guide also advises Muslims to visit The Lit. Bar, a bookstore/wine bar with a sizable LGBTQ section. That’s not so much a suggestion as a hate crime.

But the Halal Guide also makes a point of appending the location of a nearby mosque, one of those 275, to each American landmark. And the Guide’s choices have quite a history.

The Halal Guide recommends the Islamic Society of Bay Ridge. The ISBR was a target of NYPD surveillance before the De Blasio administration dismantled the city’s potent counterterrorism machine.

Shahawar Matin Siraj, a Pakistani who worked at the Islamic Society of Bay Ridge’s bookstore, was sentenced to 30 years in prison for a plot to bomb a midtown Manhattan subway station.

After the attack, Zein Rimawi, a founder and board member of ISBR, ranted, “You see Afghanistan, and it’s a war against the Muslims. Iraq, it’s a war against the Muslims. Palestine, it’s a war against the Muslims. Chechnya, a war against the Muslims.”
‘Blatantly’ Antisemitic Speaker to Deliver Talk at Harvard University
Mohammed el-Kurd, a controversial Palestinian activist who has been accused of “blatant” antisemitism by campus Jewish groups, will speak Monday evening at Harvard University in an event hosted by the school’s Palestine Solidarity Committee (PSC).

Currently a columnist for the left-wing magazine The Nation, the 24-year-old el-Kurd has trafficked in antisemitic tropes, demonized Zionism, and falsely accused Israelis of eating the organs of Palestinians. Over the past two years he has widely toured across American university campuses, heightening concerns about rising antisemitism and harassment against pro-Israel students.

During stops last year at Duke University and Arizona State University (ASU) el-Kurd insulted students and told the audience at ASU, “if you heckle me, you will get shot.”

El-Kurd will be joined at Harvard Monday by Marcus McDonald, a public racial advocate, for a talk about “racial justice and solidarity,” according to an announcement by Harvard’s PSC. The two will discuss “their experiences as students and activists part of the Palestinian liberation movement and Black Lives Matter, as well as how students can get involved in this initiatives.”

El-Kurd’s invitation is only the most worrying instance of normalized antisemitism on Harvard’s campus, sophomore Alexander Bernat told The Algemeiner on Monday.

“I think it’s high time that the Harvard administration take a more vocal stance against antisemitic acts on campus,” Bernat said. “El-Kurd’s invitation speaks to a broader trend of rising antisemitism at Harvard. It started with the Israel apartheid week last year, which involved Holocaust imagery, a number of antisemitic tropes, and was just disgusting.”

Adidas drops Kanye West over ‘unacceptable, hateful’ anti-Semitic statements
German sporting goods giant Adidas announced on Tuesday that it is severing ties with Ye, birth name Kanye West, following a series of anti-Semitic and offensive statements by the American rapper, producer and fashion designer.

“Adidas does not tolerate antisemitism and any other sort of hate speech. Ye’s recent comments and actions have been unacceptable, hateful and dangerous, and they violate the company’s values of diversity and inclusion, mutual respect and fairness,” the company said in a statement.

“After a thorough review, the company has taken the decision to terminate the partnership with Ye immediately, end production of Yeezy branded products and stop all payments to Ye and his companies. Adidas will stop the Adidas Yeezy business with immediate effect,” the statement continued.

West’s Twitter and Instagram accounts have been restricted due to his offensive outbursts, and the anti-Semitic posts removed. Several other companies have also cut ties with West over the controversy.

Success After over 150,000 sign our petition, Adidas finally cuts ties with Kanye West
After over 150,000 people signed our petition over the past several days, global retailer Adidas has finally dropped its partnership with Ye (also known as Kanye West) following his repeated antisemitic outbursts.

The petition went viral and was endorsed by numerous celebrities and influencers around the world.

Adidas’ belated decision comes after other brands like Balenciaga and Vogue, and agencies like Creative Artists Agency cut ties with the artist. His label Universal also denounced his comments, if rather weakly, and his own lawyer has dropped him as a client. Leading film studio MRC has also shelved a documentary about him.

On his partnership with Adidas, Ye has said: “The thing about me and Adidas is like, I can literally say antisemitic s*** and they can’t drop me. I can say antisemitic things and Adidas can’t drop me. Now what?”

Ye now knows.

A spokesperson for Campaign Against Antisemitism said: “Adidas has finally joined other brands and agencies and cut ties with Ye (Kanye West). This would not have happened without the almost 175,000 who signed our petition and the celebrities and influencers on both sides of the Atlantic and around the world who helped promote it and amplified the message. A company with a Nazi past must be at the forefront, not the rearguard, of fighting antisemitism. But better late than never. No company should profit from antisemitism.
Kim Kardashian breaks silence on Kanye’s scandal, says she ‘stands with’ Jews
American media personality Kim Kardashian spoke out Monday against hate and said she stood alongside the Jewish people, in her first public response to the backlash created by antisemitic remarks made by her ex-husband Kanye West, who now goes by the name Ye.

“Hate speech is never OK or excusable,” she said on Twitter. “I stand together with the Jewish community and call on the terrible violence and hateful rhetoric towards them to come to an immediate end,” she added, though she did not mention West or his connection to the post.

Her statement came just hours after she was spotted enjoying dinner with Ivanka Trump, daughter of former president Donald Trump and wife of Jared Kushner, senior adviser to her father while he was in office. Kushner and his wife are Jewish.

In a recent interview with Fox News host Tucker Carlson, West accused Kushner of brokering the 2020 Abraham Accords peace agreements between Israel and several Arab nations in order “to make money.”

He then had antisemitic outbursts across social media and in news interviews, including vowing to go “death con 3 on Jewish people,” claiming that he is the target of a “Jewish underground media mafia,” and that “Jewish people have owned the Black voice.” He was locked out of several social media accounts as a result of his comments.

Documentary on Kanye iced, as talent agency drops rapper
A completed documentary about the US rapper formerly known as Kanye West has been shelved amid his recent slew of antisemitic remarks.

MRC studio executives Modi Wiczyk, Asif Satchu and Scott Tenley announced in a memo Monday: “We cannot support any content that amplifies his platform.”

West, who legally changed his name to Ye, was recently restricted from posting on Twitter and Instagram over antisemitic posts that the social networks said violated their policies. He has also suggested slavery was a choice and called the COVID-19 vaccine the “mark of the beast.” Earlier this month, he was criticized for wearing a “White Lives Matter” T-shirt to the showing of his latest collection at Paris Fashion Week.

Wiczyk and Satchu are co-founders and co-CEOs of MRC Entertainment. Tenley is the chief business officer. Shelving the documentary comes just days after the French fashion house Balenciaga cut ties with the rapper, according to Women’s Wear Daily. Adidas is also facing pressure to sever its relationship with West.

In their lengthy memo, Wiczyk, Satchu and Tenley reach deep into the history of antisemitism.

“Kanye is a producer and sampler of music. Last week he sampled and remixed a classic tune that has charted for over 3000 years — the lie that Jews are evil and conspire to control the world for their own gain. This song was performed acapella in the time of the Pharaohs, Babylon and Rome, went acoustic with The Spanish Inquisition and Russia’s Pale of Settlement, and Hitler took the song electric. Kanye has now helped mainstream it in the modern era,” they wrote.

PreOccupiedTerritory: Israeli Oblivious To Evil Motives ‘Pro-Palestinian’ Has Assigned Her (satire)
A resident of this Tel Aviv suburb remains completely unaware that her mundane, everyday activities typical of a working mother and wife constitute not the routine familiar to anyone in those roles in the modern world, but the wicked, oppressive moves of a colonialist, supremacist invader hell-bent on maximizing the misery of the powerless natives, as explained by an anti-Zionist activist today.

Michal Gottleib, 30, dropped her two-year-old daughter off at day care this morning and proceeded to her job in human resources at a commercial real estate firm in nearby Ramat Gan – a quotidian series of daily actions that to the untrained eye and mind constitute an unremarkable start to a Wednesday in the twenty-first century, but, as human rights activist Mach Schnell enlightened reporters, in fact derive from the most irredeemable motives and have the most deleterious effects on Palestinians, and Ms. Gottleib can stop pretending she doesn’t know exactly what he means.

“There was less traffic today than I expected,” reported Gottleib, who also has a four-year-old and a seven-year old. “[Husband] Guy got the other kids out more or less on time. I dropped off Harel and drove to work,” she continued, betraying no sign that each step of her commute dispossessed Palestinians, committed mass murder, and defiled Islamic lands that must never remain under non-Islamic rule.
The Washington Post Finds Israel’s Democracy Divisive
When Menachem Begin, a founder of the Likud, won in 1977 he did so with a coalition comprised, in part, of Jews from Arab lands, many of whom felt disaffected and ignored under Labor’s rule.

The Post fails to provide this essential political history. It fails to point out that, by any measure, Israel today is more democratic and more diverse. Instead, it uncritically quotes Talshir’s absurd claim that Netanyahu “wants to disable the judicial system.” The newspaper adds to the mix with some editorializing, asserting that Netanyahu and his supporters “have waged a scorched earth campaign against the judges and prosecutors” investigating corruption allegations against Netanyahu. No further details are provided for readers.

To the Post’s credit, the paper does note that “conservative Israelis” see such investigations as “politically motivated prosecution by a court system dominated by a liberal elite.” Unfortunately, the Post fails yet again to offer additional details.

The Post’s concept of democracy only goes so far. And it only seems to include the people, or political parties, that the newspaper favors. Should an opponent or opposition party threaten their preferred power, democracy is suddenly “under threat.”

The report fails in another key respect. The newspaper refers to Israeli Arabs as “Palestinian citizens of Israel.” Yet, a 2020 survey by Tel Aviv University found that “about a quarter (23%) of Israeli minorities define themselves as ‘Israeli’ and half (51%) self-identify as ‘Israeli Arab.’” Only 7% of Israel’s Arab citizens preferred to be called “Palestinian.”

Of course this didn’t stop correspondents from a U.S.-based newspaper, many of whom spend less than five years in Israel, from choosing to use terminology that most Israeli Arabs reject. Other recent Post reports have used similar language. One wonders if these reports have ever appeared next to Washington Post editorials decrying “colonialism.”

But facts, like language, can be twisted to fit the Post’s preferred narrative.
Israel offered peace in 2000, and its citizens kept dying
Guardian contributor Raja Shehadeh is a master at deceptively using language to indict Israel, while obfuscating any and all Palestinian responsibility for the continuation of the conflict. Indeed, the headline of his recent op-ed, though likely not written by the Palestinian writer and activist, is certainly Shehadeh-worthy in its rhetorical manipulation in service of the desired narrative.
The headline was partly inspired by Shehadeh’s positive reference in his piece to Noam Chomsky, known for his academic career in linguistics, as well his support for terrorists and genocidal regimes. He quotes Chomsky as having predicted in the 1980s that increased settlement-building would bring more violence to the territories.

Shehadeh later adds, in support of Chomsky’s thesis, that “the number of people killed by Israeli forces this year stands, shockingly, at more than 100”, failing to note that many, or most, of those killed have been terrorists, or as the result of clashes between terrorists and IDF forces.

These clashes have been triggered by the actions of Palestinian extremists, insofar as the IDF has launched raids on, and have attempted to arrest, Palestinians believed responsible for attacks which have taken the lives of 20 Israelis this year, mostly civilians. Nowhere in his piece does he even acknowledge Israeli casualties of attacks by antisemitic West Bank terror groups like Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad, or the obstacle such extremist groups represent to peace.

The argument in the headline and supporting text, that the settlements are the reason why “Palestinians keep dying”, is undermined in other ways as well.
HATE IN FLATBUSH: Jewish Teen Pummeled With Eggs As Group Yells “Free Palestine”
The NYPD is investigating a possible hate crime in Flatbush on Monday evening.

The Flatbush Scoop reports that that a group of teens allegedly threw eggs at a Jewish teen in the vicinity of Avenue M and East 18th Street (near bay Avenue) on Monday afternoon. The group reportedly said “Free Palestine”, made other threats and egged the boy.

Flatbush Shomrim responded along with the NYPD, but the group had fled the scene.

The NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force is investigating the incident.

NYC Councilman Kalman Yeger tweeted that this incident happened just one block away from a previous hate crime.
Man who sold gun to Texas synagogue attacker gets 8 years in prison
A man who sold a pistol to a man who used it to hold four hostages inside a Texas synagogue before being fatally shot by the FBI was sentenced Monday to nearly eight years in prison for a federal gun crime, the US Department of Justice said.

Henry “Michael” Dwight Williams, 33, pleaded guilty in June to being a felon in possession of a firearm, prosecutors said.

Williams sold Malik Faisal Akram the weapon Arkam used when he entered Congregation Beth Israel in the Dallas-area suburb of Colleyville on January 15 and held the synagogue’s rabbi and three others hostage, according to prosecutors.

Williams, who was previously convicted of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and attempted possession of a controlled substance, sold Akram a semi-automatic pistol on January 13.

Prosecutors said that in plea papers, Williams admitted to possession of that firearm despite his prior conviction.

“This defendant, a convicted felon, had no business carrying — much less buying and selling — firearms,” US Attorney Chad Meacham said in a news release.
Alleged social media post by SNP inclusivity official breaches International Definition of Antisemitism
An SNP official recently elected as the Party’s disabled members’ convener is alleged to have published a social media post that breaches the International Definition of Antisemitism.

Andy Stuart is claimed to have written on Twitter and Facebook in 2016: “The irony is that Israeli forces are acting no better towards the Palestinians than the Nazi’s [sic] did to the Jews…” The post also shared a link to a Facebook group called “Palestine News”.

According to the International Definition of Antisemitism, “drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis” is an example of antisemitism.

An SNP spokesman said: “Mr Stuart has deleted these posts from 2016, which were made shortly after the drafting of the [International Definition of Antisemitism]. He appreciates the poor choice of words at that time and why it could cause offence. The National Secretary will examine the circumstances to assess what further steps are required.”
Senior local authority officer exposed as operating incendiary far-right anonymous social media channels
A senior local authority officer has been exposed as operating incendiary far-right anonymous social media channels.

Leon Mayer, who works as a systems development officer at Swindon Borough Council, is reported to have secretly run Twitter and YouTube accounts that published inflammatory rock songs with racist references to Jews.

Mr Mayer has also reportedly been photographed on hikes organised by the far-right group Patriotic Alternative.

According to watchdog Red Flare, Mr Mayer operates the @NatKumquat handle on Twitter and the Kumquat Nat account on YouTube, a platform that he has reportedly referred to as “Judentube”.

Both accounts have apparently shared antisemitic and far-right content, including songs called Swindon Is Dead, Dresden and Kalergi Express, a reference to the antisemitic “Kalergi Plan” conspiracy theory, which alleges that Jews are “taking over the world” by encouraging immigration, as well as marriage and sexual relationships between members of different races.

When YouTube took down the video of a song called Dissident Detected (Shut It Down!), Mr Mayer complained on his Twitter account: “(The song) gets taken down by Judentube for possible ‘Hate Speech’. They write themselves.”
Remembering the Long, and Mostly Happy, History of Ottoman Jewry
While the Istanbul-based sultanate that ruled much of the Middle East, North Africa, and southeastern Europe for many centuries had its flaws—not least corruption, authoritarianism, and the murderous persecution of the Armenians from the 1880s on—it also had much to commend it. Diana Darke notes that for most of its history it was one of the most tolerant places in the world, and a refuge for Jews when they had been expelled from most of Western and central Europe:
[A]n empire that lasted over 600 years, spanned three continents, and ruled over 30 million subjects comprising more than 70 ethnicities speaking twelve different languages must have got something right.

The Spanish Sephardim . . . were stripped of their wealth and banished [by the Spanish and Portuguese monarchies]. As a result, from the 16th century onwards, the Ottoman empire hosted one of the largest Jewish communities in the world, with Istanbul and Thessalonica their biggest centers. Along with other non-Muslims, the Sephardim simply had to pay the poll tax (a sum that was lower than their previous tax obligations in Catholic Spain) and to pledge obedience.

In the mid-15th century, a rabbi from Istanbul spread the word to Jews in Spain: “Here in the land of the Turks we have nothing to complain of. We possess great fortunes; much gold and silver are in our hands. We are not oppressed with heavy taxes, and our commerce is free and unhindered. Everything is cheap and every one of us lives in peace and freedom. Here the Jew is not compelled to wear a yellow star as a badge of shame, as is the case in most of Germany, where even wealth and great fortune are a curse for a Jew because he therewith arouses jealousy among the Christians and they devise all kind of slander against him to rob him of his gold.”

When occasional anti-Jewish riots broke out in Constantinople, they were invariably stirred up not by Muslims but by Christians accusing Jews of the ritual kidnapping, murder, and eating Christian children.
The mythical Golden Age and the nature of tolerance
How golden was the Golden Age in Islamic Spain? This was just one question posed by Swedish academicWiji Bohme Shomary in her paper on Arab antisemitism for Gotland University. She draws on such sources as Philippe Simonnot, a non-Jewish professor of Economics at the University of Paris and author of Enquete sur l’antisemitisme musulmane, Bernard Lewis (Semites and Antisemites) Robert Wistrich, Walter Laqueur, Bat Yeor and Andrew Bostom.

Simonnot strongly condemns the contemporary fashion of romanticizing the multicultural society which existed in Al-Andalus, Islamic Spain between the 8th and 15th centuries. Unfortunately, this mythical world of religious tolerance and cooperation has been upheld by so many school books that it has become almost unassailable. The idea that, long ago and far away, Muslims, Christians and Jews lived peacefully side by side is understandably appealing to people living in today’s contentious climate.

Simmonot says that this consciously unrealistic version of Spanish history appeared credible to the anti-colonialists but was in objective terms just wishful thinking. This idyllic vision of peace and harmony between Jews and Arabs gained a foothold in Europe at the time when colonies everywhere were struggling for their independence. European intellectuals, anxious to expiate their guilt as members of the imperialist nations, began to cultivate several such myths which are still alive and kicking in spite of the protests of serious historians.‖112

The author also refers to the explanation of the writer Albert Memmi, a Tunisian Jew. Memmi believes that what he calls the myth of Jewish-Arab harmony owes its existence to the political goals of left-wing European governments and their Arab counterparts. Essentially, Simonnot believes that the widely-accepted story of religious and racial tolerance in medieval Moorish Spain is a piece of politically-motivated historical revisionism.

The very fact that non-Muslims were branded as dhimmis, with all the mandatory restrictions and penalties, is proof that tolerance as a philosophical concept did not exist among Muslims.

The burdens of dhimmitude cannot be underestimated, because they disprove the current myth of a Jewish-Muslim Golden Age, or a symbiotic shared Jewish- Muslim civilization which reached its apotheosis in Moorish Andalucia.
Armenia has had few Jews and a poor relationship with Israel. That could be changing
Just outside a remote village two hours’ drive east of Yerevan, in a clearing reachable only by hiking down a steep embankment and crossing a rickety wooden bridge, looms a remarkable sight: a blue metal gate decorated with a Star of David that guards the entrance to one of the world’s most unusual Jewish cemeteries.

Here, in a pastoral setting disturbed only by the chirping of birds and the rushing waters of the Yeghegis River, lie 64 complete tombstones and fragments of others dating from 1266 to 1346. Their inscriptions, written in both Hebrew and Aramaic, have been studied by scholars for years.

Among them is the epitaph of a young Jewish boy that reflects the profound grief of his parents: “Your dead [shall live], corpses shall rise, awake and sing for joy, O dwellers in the dust! For [your dew] is a radiant dew.”

The medieval cemetery, rarely visited these days and in an obvious state of neglect, is nevertheless proof that a Jewish community has long existed and even flourished in Armenia — home of the biblical Noah’s Ark and the world’s first Christian nation.

That community is today among the smallest of the 15 republics that, until 1991, formed the Soviet Union — although it has swelled in recent months, if only temporarily, with Jews fleeing Russia.

In addition, even as Israel is home to the oldest Armenian diaspora community and Jerusalem’s Old City boasts an Armenian quarter, Armenia’s relationship with Jews and Israel is difficult, both for historical reasons and because Israel is a key ally of Armenia’s archenemy, Azerbaijan.
From the webUS hedge fund Third Point opens Tel Aviv office in scouting bid for tech investments
Billionaire investor Daniel Loeb is searching for more promising startups and is setting his sights on Israel to find them.

Loeb's $14 billion New York-headquartered hedge fund Third Point LLC is opening an office in Tel Aviv on Monday, creating an outpost in a city known for its booming technology sector.

For Third Point, one of the hedge fund industry's most successful firms, the Tel Aviv office will become its first international location. For Third Point Ventures, Third Point's venture capital arm, it will be a second hub, in addition to its Menlo Park office in Silicon Valley, to scout investments focusing on data infrastructure, cybersecurity and enterprise software, Loeb said.

Third Point Ventures (TPV), run by Loeb and Robert Schwartz, offers early-stage capital and hands-on help to prepare for a public stock listing. It has made six investments in Israel since 2015, including in cybersecurity company SentinelOne (S.N) and AI transcription and captioning company Verbit.

"TPV's permanent presence in Israel is a natural extension of the commitment we have had to the country for many years, evidenced by previous early-stage investments made from our hedge fund," Loeb said.
Google sets up tech program at Reichman University as part of $25m diversity drive
Google is partnering with Israel’s Reichman University (formerly the Interdisciplinary Center, Herzliya or IDC) to launch a new program that will offer academically supervised and credited courses to students looking to sharpen their tech skills ahead of a potential career in Israel’s most celebrated industry.

In the announcement Monday, Google and Reichman University said they were establishing a “School of High-Tech” that will include tech and business courses like programming, software testing, business development and data analysis “to prepare students for professions that are in high demand in the Israeli high-tech market.”

But unlike the university’s established schools named after prominent magnates and with their financial support like the Lauder School of Government (named after American billionaire and philanthropist Ronald S. Lauder) or the Dr. Miriam and Sheldon G. Adelson School of Entrepreneurship or the Sammy Ofer School of Communications, all of which offer bachelor’s degrees (and some master’s), the new “school” is more like an academic bootcamp, a short but intensive training program.

The program will also provide support for placements and integration into the tech sector, the university said in a statement.

Admission to the program will be based on applicants’ abilities, qualifications, and interpersonal skills, with a focus on students from communities whose underrepresentation is starkly noted in the tech sector. These communities include ultra-Orthodox and Arab professionals, women, and those who live outside Israel’s central areas, also called the “periphery.”
Exiled Afghan women’s cycling champ to ride for Israeli team
An Israeli cycling team announced Monday it has recruited exiled Afghan athlete Fariba Hashimi, a day after she won her national championship — held in Switzerland since the women’s sports event has been banned by the ruling Taliban.

Hashimi, 19, and her sister Yulduz, 22 — who took second place in the event — fled Afghanistan days before the ultra-conservative Taliban entered Kabul last year and took over the country, carrying out a crackdown on women’s rights.

Now building a new life in Italy, Fariba Hashimi has accepted an invitation to join Women’s WorldTour team Israel – Premier Tech Roland, extended by the team’s owner Sylvan Adams, according to a statement on the team’s behalf.

The statement said Yulduz will join the team as well next year, “with the announcement of a U23 Continental team in the works.”

“We are making history here as these two brave women become the first from their country to reach this level of the sport,” said Adams. “It is part of our commitment to helping young cyclists from all over the world – from developing nations to war zones.”

“I can’t lie – it’s so exciting but it’s pressure, too,” said Fariba Hashimi. “Honestly, I didn’t think I would get this opportunity to ride for a WorldTour team and a chance to race in the Tour de France.

“I will take the challenge head-on and race for all the women in Afghanistan. My country today is dangerous for many of the women living there. Women are not free to live and thrive as they wish, but if they see me riding in the TDF with the Afghan colors they will see that everything is possible.”
Israeli researchers use geomagnetic data to support biblical accounts
An Israeli scientific breakthrough has enabled researchers to verify biblical accounts of wars between ancient Jewish kingdoms and their enemies, according to a statement released by Tel Aviv University (TAU) on Tuesday.

The scientists examined archaeological findings containing magnetic minerals which, when heated or burned, record the local magnetic field. These magnetic records can thus be used to date the fires, matching them to reported military campaigns, in a manner reminiscent of radiocarbon dating.

Using such records, a joint study by TAU and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, employing some 20 researchers from a variety of countries and disciplines, was able to accurately date destruction layers at 17 archeological sites throughout Israel, according to the statement.

The researchers were able to reconstruct the direction and intensify of the Earth’s magnetic field in burnt remnants at various battle sites, enabling them to match the dates of the fires to biblical accounts of battles between Israel and Judah, the two ancient Hebrew kingdoms that formed after the division of the united Israelite monarchy, and armies from ancient Egypt, Aram, Assyria and Babylon.

“Findings indicate, for example, that the army of Hazael, King of Aram-Damascus, was responsible for the destruction of several cities—Tel Rehov, Tel Zayit, and Horvat Tevet,” according to the statement. Hazael’s campaign also resulted in the destruction of the Philistine city of Gath, an event recorded in the Bible.

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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 18 years and 38,000 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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