Tuesday, March 28, 2023

From Ian:

Lauder to Biden: ‘This is Not Germany in 1938; This is the United States in 2023’
Back in 2016, Ronald S. Lauder, president of the World Jewish Congress, presented the Theodor Herzl Award—the organization’s highest honor—to then-Vice President Joe Biden. On March 26, he penned a letter to the now US president, whom he called “a friend of the Jewish people,” about the need to curb rising antisemitism.

“Today, America is witnessing the most frightening increase in antisemitism since the end of World War II,” Lauder wrote in the letter appearing as an ad in the New York Post. “Jews make up just 2% of the US population, but are the target of more than half of all religious hate crimes.”

“Jews have been murdered, beaten and spat upon—especially Orthodox Jews—with almost complete silence from political leaders and the media,” added Lauder.

He noted that it is common for celebrities, athletes and even members of Congress to say “the most outrageous anti-Jewish slurs,” and Jewish students are “singled out” on campuses for their Jewish names or defense of Israel’s right to exist.

“Jewish enrollment at elite schools has plummeted. Jewish students are excluded from clubs and denied positions,” he wrote. “This is not Germany in 1938; this is the United States in 2023. Mr. President, only you can stop this rising tide of hatred against the Jewish people.”

Lauder urged Biden to state “in the strongest language” that hating Jews is dangerous and un-American. He also called on the US president to do three things.
Why critical race theory could be dangerous for America's faith-based communities - Opinion
CRT demonizes success, arguing that achievement is the product of exploitation and also undermines free speech and enforces ideological conformity by forcefully shutting down views and opinions that put the individual in the center, and encourages individual accountability and responsibility.

One of the core tenets of CRT and intersectionality is that a society based on “meritocracy” is inherently white supremacist. For America to continue to flourish, excellence should be rewarded, not used as ammo in cultural wars and ideological debates.

AP classes are being eliminated, grades are disappearing from schools, and SAT scores for college admission are going extinct. For decades these metrics have helped assess students’ individual abilities and tailor programs for their specific needs and talents. Meritocratic excellence, familiar to faith-based communities, is being systematically replaced with Marxist-inspired equity.

CRT pits group against group and foments hatred for the “other”.

Understanding that all people have the power and resources to fulfill their potential, regardless of their ethnic background, is imperative for a diverse society to flourish. Individuals are capable of great evil, great courage, and everything in between. An oppressor/oppressed binary pits people against people, without distinction.

Efforts by radical left activists in shaping California’s ethnic studies curriculum demonstrates how CRT/intersectionality functions in the school system. Jews and Asians, although minorities and regardless of their individual achievements and life circumstances, are considered “white adjacent” and are therefore beneficiaries of the white power structure and contribute to the oppression of people of color. This framework disallows merit, the complexity of American society, and causes bigotry and ignorance.

Americans who choose to prioritize traditional values, are seen as “oppressor adjacent” and promoters of a “white supremacist” ideal. The result is that instead of leading to a more equal and better society under CRT/intersectionality the oppressors become oppressed, and the cycle of hate continues.

America is too diverse, complex, and open-hearted to be pitting fellow Americans against each other. It goes against the ethos of America’s “Golden Rule” of interpersonal respect and tolerance.

America was founded by people fleeing religious persecution. We built a society rooted in religious tolerance. The spread of CRT is a danger to every person of faith. We need to build alliances between Jews, Christians, Muslims, Hindus, and everyone who believes in objective right and wrong, and the traditional values on which this country is built.
Meet the Starbucks Union Activist Who Called a Palestinian Terrorist a 'Freedom Fighter'
The activist helming the Starbucks union drive has praised a convicted Palestinian terrorist as a "freedom fighter," called for replacing Israel with Palestine, and urged labor federations to reject police unions.

Jaz Brisack, a former Rhodes Scholar who began unionizing Starbucks while on the payroll of the Service Employees International Union, catapulted into far-left politics as a full-scholarship student at Ole Miss. While there, she defended Palestinian terrorist Rasmea Odeh as a "political prisoner" in a 2017 op-ed letter published by the student newspaper. Brisack wanted to repudiate a story by a fellow student who referred to Odeh as a terrorist with communist ties—a description Brisack called an "ad hominem attack."

"Odeh has been targeted in an attempt to undermine her advocacy for Palestinian liberation," Brisack wrote. Odeh was convicted of coordinating two bombings, including one at an Israeli supermarket that killed two students and injured seven—including an Auschwitz survivor—and admitted her involvement to a Lebanese journalist.

"She has called attention to the fact that Israel, guilty of the crime of apartheid, illegally occupies Palestinian land and subjects the Arab population to countless indignities," Brisack continued.

These declarations could hurt 25-year-old Brisack’s star turn as the U.S. Senate spotlights her organizing efforts this week. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) on Wednesday will convene a committee hearing to grill former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz over allegations the company retaliated against Brisack and other union organizers. Schultz, who got his start as a Starbucks employee before transforming the company into a global conglomerate, recently stepped down from his interim leadership post.

Brisack’s praise for the Palestinian terrorist Odeh aligns with the progressive and anti-Israel bent of her other political beliefs, which include support for defunding police and boycotting and sanctioning Israel. Odeh became a celebrity cause for American progressives when the Trump administration deported her in 2017 for lying to obtain a fraudulent visa.

Can the whole world be wrong about the Jews A review
Though Richard Landes is a Princeton-educated medievalist, he’s best known – at least amongst us non-academics – for his trenchant criticism of international media coverage of Israel, Jews and Islamist terrorism.

He coined the term “Pallywood” – a take on Bollywood – which refers media manipulation and fraud by Palestinians employed to win the public relations war with Israel. He was among the first serious thinkers to critically examine the Al-Durrah Affair and to expose the gaping holes in the media’s narrative of that incident which accepted at face value Palestinian claims that Israel intentionally murdered an innocent child.

His new book, “Can The Whole World Be Wrong?: Lethal Journalism, Antisemitism and Global Jihad”, is inspired by the following quotes:
Is it possible that everybody can be wrong, and the Jews be right? —Ahad Ha’am, 1892 (on the gentile response to Jews denying the blood libel)

I don’t think the whole world, including the friends of the Israeli people and government, can be wrong. —Kofi Anan, UN Secretary General, 2002 (in response to IDF operation in Jenin)

Landes’s focus on the media in chapter nine of his book – the focus of our review – describes the growing phenomenon, since the aughts, of advocacy journalism which replaced empirically-based reporting as the dominant media template in covering the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

This manifests itself not only in the portrayal of Israel as the Goliath to the Palestinian David – which evokes, Landes argues, in many Europeans, burdened by their own history, a moral Schadenfreude – and by holding Israelis to a higher moral standard than Palestinians and often erasing Palestinian agency altogether.

One could say that Landes was early to understand what would become known as Wokeism: an illiberal ideology which insists that achieving global social justice requires that we classify people purely – and often arbitrarily – as victims or victimisers, with only the latter being seen as moral actors. Thus, we see Palestinian extremism, violence and antisemitism almost uniformly downplayed, obfuscated and erased from the media’s first draft of history.

Arguably one of the best examples – in a very crowded field – cited by Landes of the degree to which mainstream journalists will go to cover for Palestinian racism against Jews is an incident exposed by CAMERA in 2001. The New York Times employed a ‘he said, she said’ formula on the ‘question’ of Palestinian incitement which included a grossly misleading quote from a Palestinian sermon broadcast on Voice of Palestine Radio.
Palestinian nationhood? What does that mean
Anthony Smith, the renowned sociologist and Professor of Nationalism and Ethnicity at the London School of Economics, once distinguished between two types of national identity. The first type includes nations with a core identity based on culture and history, and the second – nations without any such nucleus that are required to invent everything from nothing.

We belong to the first type while the Palestinians belong to the second type. It is as simple as that. This is essentially what Smotrich said, and Smotrich, even though his name is Smotrich, was right on this occasion. The Al-Masri clan migrated here from Egypt, the Al-Mughrabi clan from Algeria, Al-Turki from Turkey, Al-Iraqi from Iraq who settled in Taibeh, and the Al-Ajami clan from Iran. The Kna'an family in Nablus does not hail from the historical Land of Canaan but rather from Aleppo in Syria. As the renowned researcher, Pinhas Inbari, has suggested, the Erekat family from Jericho originates from the large Al-Huwaytat tribe that moved from Medina and then settled in Jordan, as well as in Abu-Dis and in Jericho. Thus, it is clear that they all came from the immediate "neighborhood".

The term "Palestinian People", in relation to the Arabs living in Israel, appeared for the first time in 1964, in the PLO Charter. The outrageous UNRWA definition, according to which the minimum seniority required in Israel in order to define an individual as a Palestinian refugee (both him and his descendants) amounts to two years, still does not qualify to turn the Palestinians into a people.

The Palestinians have almost no unique defining trait. Neither religion nor language, and no common ethnic background or history and shared homeland. If you take the trouble to examine the long-winded, multi-clause definition that UNESCO contributed to the term "people", you will also discover that the Palestinians do not meet the majority of them.

"The Palestinian People" was created especially for us, only following the Shivat Zion ("Return to Zion") movement and the subsequent renewed Jewish settlement in Israel, in an attempt to wipe us off the map along with our unbroken, thousands-of-years-old bond with this land. There is really no need to waste any words on our roots to the Land of Israel, in stark contrast with the fake roots that the Palestinians have tried to put down. Our history is manifestly documented in the chronicles of history, in the Bible, undeniably etched in archeology and research. We have no need for inventions and historical forgeries. As the 19th-century British statesman and social reformer, Lord Shaftesbury, so aptly put it 180 years ago, we returned as a "people without a land to a land without a people".
The Middle East Studies Association Reaps the Fruit of Its Own Politicization
Last year the Middle East Studies Association (MESA)—long the major academic organ for its field in North America—formally endorsed the boycotting of Israeli institutions of higher learning. Martin Kramer examines what’s happened since:

At that moment, MESA transformed itself from an academic association to a political advocacy group. That raises an acute question. MESA has a category of institutional members which (so it claims) “share MESA’s commitment . . . [to] defending the rights of scholars and academics around the world.” How many of these members have continued their membership in MESA, given that the association has violated the rights of Israeli scholars and academics?

We now have a clearer answer to that question. Numbers tell part of the story. At the end of 2022, there were 43 institutional members. At present there are only 31. The downward trend has been evident for a while: in 2010, MESA had 62 institutional members. But the most recent drop has been swift and steep. Still, it’s the qualitative deterioration that’s truly remarkable. Some of the nation’s leading Middle East centers no longer appear on the membership rolls.

Given the timing, one suspects that MESA’s boycott resolution is responsible for the flight, at least in part. These veteran Middle East centers are precisely the ones that compete for federal funding as “national resource centers.” Having their names associated with the aims of a BDS organization may be perceived as a risk. Better just to leave the MESA renewal notice in the “to-do” box or toss it out.
George Washington University Exonerates Professor Accused of Antisemitism
George Washington University on Monday said there is no evidence to substantiate a civil rights complaint’s claims that one of its assistant professors is antisemitic and discriminated against Jewish students.

In January, a Jewish nonprofit, StandWithUs (SWU), filed with the US Department of Education Office of Civil Rights a complaint against George Washington University (GWU) alleging that it neglected to protect students from Lara Sheehi, an assistant psychology professor, after she allegedly created a hostile environment for Jewish and Israeli students enrolled in a graduate level psychology program.

SWU alleged that GWU did not intervene when Sheehi, who teaches a mandatory diversity course, hosted an antisemitic speaker, launched a smear campaign against Jewish students, and filed disciplinary charges against them in retaliation for their accusing her of antisemitism.

Immediately following widespread media coverage of the allegations, GWU hired Crowell & Moring LLP, a law firm based in Washington DC, to investigate their veracity. The university summarized the firm’s findings in a statement on Monday.

“At the conclusion of its review, Crowell found no evidence substantiating the allegations of discriminatory and retaliatory conduct alleged in the complaint,” GWU said. “Many of the statements the complaint alleges were made by Dr. Sheehi were, according to those who heard them, either inaccurate or taken out of context and misrepresented.”

Citing an incident in which Sheehi organized a presentation featuring Dr. Nadera Shalhoub-Kevorkian, who proceeded to allegedly utter antisemitic comments, the university said “the review found that the allegations in the complaint about the lecture are largely inconsistent with the recording of the event or significantly decontextualized.”
Vowing Frankfurt Concert Will Go Ahead, Roger Waters Accuses City Authorities of ‘Bullying’ Over Antisemitism Allegations
Former Pink Floyd vocalist Roger Waters has pledged to take legal action against the city of Frankfurt after it cited the musician’s alleged antisemitism as the principal reason for its cancelation for his May 28 concert.

In a statement issued in London on Tuesday, Waters declared that “Politicians have no right to intimidate and bully artists and their fans with performance bans.”

He continued: “I fight for all of our human rights, including the right to free speech. We are on the road to Frankfurt. Frankfurt, here we come!”

Waters released his statement after receiving a letter from the concert promoter at the instigation of the German state of Hesse, where Frankfurt is located, confirming that the May 28 concert would not go ahead as planned at the city’s Festhalle venue. The city council described Waters as “one of the world’s best-known antisemites” in its initial announcement of the cancelation.

While the Festhalle is wholly owned by the city and state authorities, the other German venues hosting Waters’ “This Not A Drill 2023 Tour” — in Hamburg, Berlin, Cologne and Munich — are commercial enterprises and say they risk breach of contract proceedings if they cancel the concerts. Efforts by local politicians to cancel the Cologne date have been in motion for at least a month, while last week, Munich Mayor Dieter Mayer described as “unbearable” the news that Waters’ concert would go ahead in the Bavarian city after all.

Waters’ legal team is now examining whether to file a restraining order to allow the Frankfurt concert to go ahead. The Cologne-based lawyer Ralf Höcker, who represents Waters in Germany, told German radio on Tuesday that the moves to ban the singer contributed nothing “to the important fight against antisemitism” while “costing millions in taxpayers money.”

Court Strikes NY State Regulations Threatening Orthodox Jewish Yeshivas Under “Substantial Equivalency” Test
Yesterday, a group of Orthodox Jewish schools (“yeshivas”) and yeshiva advocates scored a limited but important win in their lawsuit challenging the New York State Department of Education’s recently adopted regulations requiring private schools to be “substantially equivalent” to public schools.

New York State Supreme Court Justice Christina Ryba struck down provisions in the new regulations that force parents to unenroll their children from yeshivas that fail to meet the substantial equivalency requirements—effectively forcing closure of the schools themselves.

It is the parents’ prerogative to keep their children in the nonpublic school of their choosing, even where it fails to meet the criteria, and supplement their education through other resources, including homeschooling, the court held.

While the court otherwise upheld the new regulations, its ruling reaffirms an important principle: that the right and responsibility to direct a child’s education lies with the parent.

The law underlying the regulations is not new. For over 125 years, New York’s compulsory education statute has required that children attending non-public schools receive instruction that is “substantially equivalent” to the instruction given in public schools. And for almost all that time, as we explained here, the state has not interfered with the yeshivas’ traditional dual curriculum combining religious and secular studies.

Associated Press Sneaks Anti-Israel ‘Colonialist’ Smear Into Soccer Story
Reporting on the recent brouhaha over Israel’s participation in the FIFA Under-20 World Cup, the Associated Press sought to explain why host nation Indonesia is discriminating against the Israeli soccer team.

In short, soccer’s global governing body FIFA this week postponed the official draw for the tournament just days before it was due to take place in Bali after the island’s governor refused to allow the Israeli team entry using the pretext of Jakarta’s diplomatic support for Palestinians.

Quoting Indonesia’s Coordinating Minister for Human Development and Culture’s assertion that Indonesia’s constitution is the justification for singling out the Jewish state, AP in the subsequent paragraph attempts to contextualize the minister’s remarks:
The preamble of Indonesia’s 1945 Constitution states: ‘Whereas Independence is the inalienable right of all nations; therefore, colonialism must be abolished in the world as it is not in conformity with humanity and justice.’

By including this preamble, AP is tacitly suggesting that the Jewish state is a colonialist entity that is also denying Palestinians their “inalienable right” of independence.

While the charge that Israel is a “settler colonialist state” may be fashionable in pro-Palestinian activist circles, the allegation is demonstrably false: it ignores the fact that Jews are indigenous to the land and that Israel is a democratic state that affords equal rights to all citizens.

Additionally, the referencing of the Indonesian constitution may have a kernel of truth to it — but not in the way the Associated Press suggests.

Judaism is not among the six religions that are officially recognized by the Indonesian constitution, although Jewish practices are permitted.

In a country that is home to more than 275 million people, just 500 citizens are Jewish and they face discrimination in the conservative Muslim nation.
Ramadan in Israel: There’s More Than Meets the Eye
Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting and prayer, frequently begets violence in Israel and the West Bank, with some historical data suggesting that Palestinian terrorism consistently soars during the annual observance of the festival. Accordingly, in their coverage of the Arab-Israeli conflict, journalists have often stressed the purported negative aspects of Ramadan.

However, the media’s sole and incessant preoccupation with violence during the holiday season does an injustice to Israel’s extensive efforts to promote religious freedom for people of all faiths, including the millions of Muslims living in Jerusalem, Israeli-controlled areas of the West Bank, and throughout the Jewish state.

Sadly, little has been published about the attempts by successive governments to defuse tensions ahead of Ramadan, or the fact that Israeli authorities every year facilitate the safe ascension of hundreds and thousands of Muslim pilgrims to the Al-Aqsa Mosque, Islam’s third-holiest site on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem’s Old City.

For instance, on the first Friday of Ramadan 2023 alone, over 100,000 worshippers attended prayers at Al-Aqsa, a reported increase of some 20,000 compared to the previous year. Despite several attempts by terror organizations to incite violence at the flashpoint, the event passed largely peacefully.

Extending an olive branch to the Palestinians, Israel’s government in March 2023 announced a series of concessions for Ramadan. Among other measures, the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) stated that women of all ages, children up to 12, and men over 55 from the West Bank would be allowed to enter Jerusalem on Fridays without an existing entry permit.

Palestinians from the Gaza Strip were likewise granted permission to pray in Israel’s capital without restrictions, albeit from Sunday to Thursday. Notably, in April 2022, similar steps were taken by Israel’s defense minister, mere days after the country experienced three horrific attacks that saw terrorists murder 11 people in Israel over the course of just one week.

CAA to write to travel companies found to use happy emojis to promote tours to Auschwitz
After Hays Travel was forced to apologise for a second time for using smiley-face emojis to promote tours to the Auschwitz death camp, it can be revealed that another travel firm has also been operating the same practice.

Snowdonia Travel and Cruise used happy face emojis with heart eyes to publicise its ‘Krakow and Auschwitz tour’. Campaign Against Antisemitism will be writing to the agency.

Polka Dot Travel Wrexham also used coloured heart emojis to promote its ‘Krakow with Auschwitz tour’.

We are grateful to the member of the public who brought this to our attention.

Recently, Hays Travel apologised for a second time after it was discovered that it once again used jovial imagery on Facebook to promote its Auschwitz tours, which it listed along with trips to Disneyland and the Grand Canyon.

Hays Travel said: “We are very sorry to have caused offence especially after we tried to ensure it wouldn’t happen again. As soon as this was brought to our attention we immediately removed these posts from Facebook.”

According to the JC, the Advertising Standards Authority said in relation to Hays Travel that it took “this particular issue very seriously and recognise that this obviously has the potential to prompt concerns,” adding that its rules say that advertisements “should not contain anything likely to cause harm or offence.” It has the power to order advertisers to remove materials.

A spokesperson for Campaign Against Antisemitism said: “Despite the controversy over Hays Travel’s repeated use of emojis to advertise trips to Auschwitz, for which the company has apologised, for other travel firms to be doing the same is utterly incredible. Of all institutions, travel agents should be most sensitive to what the destinations that they are advertising represent. That so many in the travel industry continue to portray Auschwitz as some sort of theme park through the use of jovial emojis shows a dreadful lack of awareness and understanding. This appalling industry-wide practice must end.”
How Bad Arguments Undercut Georgia Legislation against Anti-Semitism
Last week, the Georgia state senate decided not to advance a bill that would classify attacks on Jews as hate crimes—a legal category that in Georgia already protects those targeted because of their race, sexual orientation, national origin, and so forth. The bill, in part a response to the distribution of anti-Semitic flyers in the Atlanta area, may have floundered because of its use of the much-maligned definition of anti-Semitism produced by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA). In February, Mark Goldfeder wrote the following in defense of the legislation:

Critics have challenged IHRA’s use in policymaking on two grounds. First, they claim that it conflates political speech against Israel with anti-Semitism. That part is simply not true; there is a safe-harbor provision in IHRA itself that says that “criticism of Israel similar to that leveled against any other country” is not anti-Semitism, as well as an express caveat that all of the examples given, including the ones about Israel, “could, taking into account the overall context,” be anti-Semitic.

The second objection to using the IHRA definition in a policy context is that in the wrong hands, it could theoretically be used to stifle speech. That argument is a red herring. Of course, free speech is a core aspect of democracy; that is why such bills cannot and do not take the form of a speech code. But discriminatory harassment and criminal conduct are not just speech, even if words are sometimes used. Unlike speech, such conduct is absolutely subject to government regulation. Well-established Supreme Court precedent requires behavior to be “objectively offensive” to fall under the category of discriminatory harassment. To meet this “objectively offensive” standard, the definition used in the discriminatory anti-Semitism motivational analysis must be objectively well-accepted. The IHRA definition is once again the obvious choice.
German State Ignores Iranian, Palestinian, and Turkish Antisemitism
The chairman of the Jewish community in Bamberg, Bavaria, dispatched a scathing letter to a German Green Party parliamentary leader, accusing him of failing to confront Islamic-animated antisemitism in his recent speech on Jew-hatred.

Andreas Schwarz, the party’s leader in the legislature of Baden-Württemberg, delivered a speech earlier this month titled “Baden-Württemberg takes a clear stance against antisemitism.” In it, he failed to mention the spread of Iranian regime-, Palestinian- and Turkish-animated antisemitism in the southwestern state.

The Jewish Press obtained the March 12 German-language letter by Martin Arieh Rudolph, the Bamberg Jewish leader, in which he wrote to Schwarz: “Unfortunately, you didn’t comment anywhere in the speech or speech draft on Islamic antisemitism, Iranian antisemitism and Palestinian antisemitism, i.e. the entire eliminatory hatred of Jews.”

Rudolph’s letter is a rare example of explicit criticism from a German Jewish community of the Green Party’s appeasement of Muslim antisemites.

Rudolph has taken the lead among German Jewish community leaders in addressing the dangers of the Islamic Republic of Iran. He asked Schwarz, “If you’re giving a speech on the subject of a ‘clear stance against antisemitism,’ why don’t you address the Iranian mullah regime’s worst hatred of Jews, which is about to destroy Israel, our religious and spiritual homeland, and is again targeting millions of Jews for murder, with atomic bombs?

He added that Schwarz also failed to “mention the exponentially increasing number of incidents based on antisemitism among Muslims in this country.”

Rudolph also took a German civil servant, Michael Blume, to task for incompetence and alleged antisemitism.

“Now it is well known that the government of Baden-Württemberg permits itself to have an antisemitism commissioner who, to put it mildly, has not properly done his job so far,” Rudolph wrote in his letter. “According to a decision of the Hamburg Regional Court, this antisemitism commissioner, his name is Dr. Michael Blume, can even be called antisemitic.”

Alleged airgun shooting suspects released by police with their weapon after being apprehended by Jewish community
Police have released suspects who reportedly shot gel pellets at identifiably Jewish people with an airgun.

The victims of one of the alleged attacks, many of whom, it is understood, believed that the gel gun was a deadly firearm, belonged to the Jewish community in Stamford Hill.

The alleged incidents were reported by Stamford Hill Shomrim, the Jewish volunteer neighbourhood watch patrol.

The volunteer group has said that there were four suspects who allegedly fired the gun from a grey Volkswagen. Police, who were said to have taken fifteen minutes to have arrived on the scene, reportedly released the suspects after a short conversation.

According to one of the victims, in one incident, the suspects were driving around Stamford Hill, one of London’s most diverse areas, firing exclusively at Jews. At approximately midnight on Saturday 18th March, a car with tinted windows drove past a woman and her husband, both of whom are identifiably Jewish, rolled down the window and fired three shots from a black gel gun before laughing. Under the impression that the car intended to run them over, the couple ran for cover.

Another individual told us that following an alleged incident in which there was another shooting of the airgun on Sunday night, the men in the car were then stopped by members of the Jewish community, who blocked the car from driving away. Police arrived fifteen minutes after being called, at which point there had been a total of five victims. Police reportedly informed the individual that the details of the men have been collected, but then released the men without seizing the weapon.
Man who stabbed two women in Burnley M&S after antisemitic rhetoric reportedly shouted found guilty of attempted murder
A man who stabbed two women in Burnley M&S after antisemitic rhetoric was reportedly shouted has been found guilty of attempted murder and wounding with intent at Manchester Crown Court.

Munawar Hussain, 59, used a knife to wound the shop manager in the neck before chasing her through the store on 2nd December 2020. He then stabbed a customer in the arm before the blade snapped, having become stuck in the customer’s handbag strap.

It was reported at the time that antisemitic rhetoric was also heard during the incident.

Following the attack, Mr Hussain reportedly tried to flee the scene but was detained outside by the shop’s security guard and members of the public before police arrived.

The court heard that, following his arrest, a note in Urdu was found on his person that read: “O Israel, you are inflicting atrocities on Palestinians and Marks Spencer helping you financially.”

It is understood that he was discovered to have had a history of mental health problems but was considered fit to answer questions and stand trial.

According to the prosecution, “he told the police that he had targeted Marks and Spencer deliberately because he believed Marks and Spencer funded Israel in what he described as its persecution of Palestine. He said that had his knife not broken he would have gone on to kill others. He said that he expected that the police might kill him and he intended to be a martyr.”

The store manager, who suffered a collapsed lung and nerve damage, told police that her assailant was wearing a COVID mask and that his eyes “looked pure evil”. She added: “If I had fallen he would have killed me. I just thought he is not taking me away from my kids.”

Judge Nicholas Dean KC, presiding, said: “An offence arising out of claims that Israel was causing atrocities against Muslims, and an attack of retribution for that, at face value, is precisely the definition of a terrorist offence.”
CAA writes to Hungerford auction house over sale of Nazi medals
CAA has written to an auction house in Hungerford over the grotesque sale of Third Reich memorabilia.

The Emporium auction house, which boasts a wide range of antiques, was discovered to have been selling emblems and medals featuring swastikas.

One item, listed at £135, was labelled “WW2 German Boxed Faithful Service Cross 2nd Class”.

Another, priced at £55, was tagged as “WW2 mothers cross in silver”.

This is not the first reported instance of an auction house selling Nazi memorabilia.

In October, Charles Hanson, who regularly appears as an expert on the BBC programme Bargain Hunt, was said to have been selling Nazi memorabilia at his auction house.
StandWithUs Joins the Foundation to Combat Antisemitism campaign to #StandUpToJewishHate
StandWithUs announced today it has joined the Foundation to Combat Antisemitism as an official partner of #StandUpToJewishHate, their new national campaign to mobilize all Americans, and especially non-Jews, to combat antisemitism by using the blue square emoji - 🟦 - as a unifying symbol of support.

Jews only make up 2.4% of the American population[1] yet are the victims of 55% of religious-based hate crimes[2]. That startling discrepancy is the cornerstone of this new campaign, created through a $25 million investment by Robert K. Kraft and his family. StandWithUs joins the Foundation, alongside a broad coalition of partnered organizations, including the League of Women Voters, Urban League, National Governors Association, the Anti-Defamation League and Hillel International to encourage its supporters to stand up to Jewish hate.

Through the #StandUpToJewishHate campaign, the Foundation to Combat Antisemitism is establishing 🟦, the Blue Square emoji already on all smartphones, as a simple, but powerful symbol of solidarity and support for the Jewish community. The 🟦 will make its debut by taking up 2.4% of TV and digital screens, billboards and social feeds, including an integrated roll-out across NBC in which hosts and talent from some of the network’s most popular shows introduce the 🟦 and discuss the rising threat of antisemitism, including on The Voice, Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen, The Kelly Clarkson Show and TODAY.

UK’s BP teams up with Abu Dhabi state oil group to buy 50% of Israel’s NewMed Energy
British multinational oil and gas firm BP plc and Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. (Adnoc) on Tuesday announced a joint bid to buy 50% of Israel’s NewMed Energy in a deal valued at about $2 billion.

As part of the non-binding offer, the two energy firms will buy 45% of the free floating shares the public holds in NewMed Energy, formerly Delek Drilling (part of Yitzhak Tshuva’s Delek Group), and about 5% of Delek Group’s stake to take the Israeli offshore natural gas producer private. Shares in NewMed jumped almost 30% in early afternoon trading in Tel Aviv.

The deal would give BP and Adnoc, the United Arab Emirates state-owned oil company, a foothold in Israel’s offshore natural gas fields and its growing energy export markets to pursue projects in eastern Mediterranean.

BP and Adnoc said they plan to form a joint venture for the purpose of the deal, which will be “focused on gas development in international areas of mutual interest including the East Mediterranean.”

The offer is another sign of the warming ties between the UAE and Israel after the two countries signed a normalization agreement in 2020 as part of the US-backed Abraham Accords. Back in 2021, Delek Drilling sold its 22% stake in Israel’s Tamar offshore gas field in the east Mediterranean to Abu Dhabi government-owned Mubadala Petroleum for about $1 billion.

NewMed is a key holder, with a 45% stake, in Israel’s Leviathan gas field off the Mediterranean coast, which contains an estimated 22 trillion cubic feet of gas, and was involved in the development of the Tamar, Karish, and Tanin natural gas fields.
UAE recognizes Israeli driver's licenses in time for Passover
Israeli driver's licenses will now be recognized in the United Arab Emirates, the Foreign Ministry announced Tuesday ahead of the Passover holiday.

The move follows a signed memorandum of understanding between Israel and the UAE to recognize driver's licenses for tourists and long-term residents.

In addition, it will also make it easier to convert driver's licenses.

Making Israeli travel to the UAE much easier
"The UAE is among the top five favorite destinations of Israeli tourists," Foreign Minister Eli Cohen said in a statement.

"Especially in the run-up to Passover, this move of mutual recognition for driver's licenses will make it much easier for tourists, save bureaucracy and is further evidence of the warm relations between the countries."
Gov. Ron DeSantis announces Israel visit, to speak at JPost conference
The Jerusalem Post and Museum of Tolerance in Jerusalem announced that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis will travel to Israel in April to attend their “Celebrate the Faces of Israel” event on April 27.

DeSantis will deliver the keynote address before a crowd of 400 participants, including around 120 US Jewish philanthropists.

Celebrate the Faces of Israel aims to tackle ever-present tensions in the country, teach about its history, and introduce the audience to the change-makers who embrace tolerance and acceptance.

The governor will speak about the importance of the US-Israel relationship, especially in difficult times.

He is traveling to Israel as a part of a larger Florida/Asian trade delegation.

“A few months after my inauguration for my first term as governor of Florida, I traveled to Israel for a state visit with the largest ever trade delegation from the sunshine state to the Jewish state,” DeSantis said. “Since that time, we have strengthened the relationship between Florida and Israel through increased investment by Israeli companies in our state, fighting the scourge of BDS, and being home to the fastest growing Jewish population in the United States,” he said. “At a time of unnecessarily strained relations between Jerusalem and Washington, Florida serves as a bridge between the American and Israeli people.”

DeSantis promised in 2019 to “be the most pro-Israel governor in America.”

In his book, the governor explains how he helped to lay the groundwork for relocating the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem and that he believes the West Bank “is not occupied territory; it is disputed territory.”
Israeli Police Discover 3,500-Year-Old Antiquities During Drug Bust
Israeli Police officers making a drug bust in Kfar Qasim discovered 3,500-year-old antiquities on Monday.

Police turned over the jugs, bowls and urns to the Israeli Antiquities Authority.

An inspector from the Authority’s robbery prevention unit said the items dated back to the Early and Middle Bronze Age.

The items were apparently stolen from burial caves near Kfar Qasim.

“The antiquities found may be impressive, but in fact it is a heart-wrenching picture,” said Amir Ganor, director of the Authority’s robbery prevention unit. “Any antiquities that are disconnected from their archaeological context, is a piece that is torn from the puzzle of our heritage.”

Also seized by the police were 60 cannabis seedlings and four kilos of a drug presumed to be marijuana.

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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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