Thursday, June 22, 2023

From Ian:

ZOA to Biden: Rescind ‘horrific, frightening’ Holocaust museum council appointments
The Zionist Organization of America and Mort Klein, its national president, are calling on the Biden administration to rescind its appointment of two individuals to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum Council, which governs the museum.

The decision to name Kimberly Marteau Emerson and Alan Solomont to the council is “horrific and frightening,” given that the two lead “hostile-to-Israel non-governmental organizations,” Klein and the ZOA stated.

“Support for a Jewish homeland” is cited as one of the museum’s focuses in the 1979 report of the President’s Commission on the Holocaust, which Holocaust survivor and Nobel laureate Elie Wiesel chaired. “Thus, the Holocaust Memorial Museum—which by law is mandated to carry out ‘support for the Jewish homeland’—should never have board members of anti-Israel organizations on the museum’s governing board,” Klein and ZOA stated.

Emerson is a board member of Human Rights Watch, which is “Israel-bashing and America-bashing” and is “infamous for falsely accusing Israel of ‘apartheid,’ ‘crimes against humanity,’ ‘persecuting’ and ‘systematic oppression’ and ‘inhumane acts’ against Palestinians,” Klein and the ZOA wrote.

Meanwhile, Solomont sits on the board of the “vicious, hostile-to-Israel groups” New Israel Fund and Israel Policy Forum, the latter of which “is so radical that it was the only group to testify against moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem,” per Klein and ZOA.

“Solomont is currently the national board chair of the notorious anti-Israel group J Street, which promotes anti-Israel UN resolutions; funds anti-Israel political candidates and lobbies for U.S. funding for the Palestinians—which enables the Palestinian Authority’s ‘pay to slay’ payments to Arab terrorists to murder Jews, among many other horrors,” they added.

'I don't think black people or Jews should be solely defined by their race'
I meet Tomiwa Owolade outside Woolwich Arsenal train station in south east London a few weeks before the publication of his hotly anticipated book, This Is Not America: Why Black Lives in Britain Matter.

“I like to call this the African Riviera,” he jokes, gesturing at the Thames as he leads me through Plumstead, where he grew up after his politician father took the family to England from Nigeria when he was nine.

"We pass a Costcutter at the end of a long road of Victorian semis. “This is where I came to buy The Times when I had my first article published in the paper, a book review,” he tells me, proudly.

Owolade has come a long way. Today a first-rank essayist and author at just 26 years old, he was at the centre of a big row in April after he wrote an article for The Observer saying that Jews were among the most abused minorities in Britain.

The article prompted Corbynite MP Diane Abbott to write a letter to the paper claiming that Jews could not suffer racism, just prejudice like that faced by “redheads”.

Owolade’s demands that Labour should expel Abbott, made to the JC at the time, marked him out as one of the few — of any colour or creed — with the courage and intellectual nous to call out the Jew-hate that often characterises the “anti-racism” movement.

He rounds on prominent figures in black America — Kanye West, Ice Cube, Whoopie Goldberg and Nation of Islam leaders — who have all been accused of antisemitism. “These people all think that they are being anti-racist.

But the main antisemitic conspiracy theory is that Jewish people are behind the slave trade. They fashion the antisemitism [as an objection] to the pernicious legacy of the slave trade, and when people think about racism against African Americans, that [the slave trade] is the gold standard.
The Protocols Of The Elders Of Zion In The Arab And Muslim World – Past And Present
Holocaust Denial Is An Inseparable Part Of The Protocols Conspiracy
One great difficulty arises, however: the theory of the Jews' satanic omnipotence is incompatible with the facts of history, and particularly with the Holocaust. How can it be claimed that the evil, all-powerful Jews are so successful in their plot for world domination when in fact one third of world Jewry was wiped out in the Holocaust?

The only way to avoid this glaring contradiction is to deny the Holocaust. Hence, Holocaust denial is an inevitable and inseparable part of the Protocols conspiracy.

Indeed, there are also those who perversely recognize that the Holocaust took place, but justify it. One noteworthy example is recently-deceased Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood spiritual leader Sheikh Yousef Al-Qaradhawi, pictured being kissed by Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Aal-Thani. Al-Qaradhawi said on the Qatari state-run Al-Jazeera Network in 2009 that Allah imposed Hitler upon the Jews as a punishment for their corruption, and that "Allah willing, the next time will be at the hands of the believers."

There are also those who solve the contradiction between the conspiracy and the Holocaust by claiming that the Jews actually collaborated with the Nazis, as was claimed by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in the introduction to the Arabic translation of his doctorate thesis.

The only other resolution to the contradiction between historical facts and the Jewish conspiracy theory would be to dismiss the conspiracy. Unfortunately, very few individuals choose this path. These notable individuals include: recently-deceased secularist Syrian intellectual Sadiq Jalal Al-Azm, the author of Self-Criticism Following Our Defeat[10]; political advisor to former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak Dr. Osama Al-Baz, who in 2002 published a series of articles in the Egyptian government daily Al-Ahram in which he debunked some of the most notorious antisemitic myths, particularly the Protocols, the blood libel, and Holocaust denial; and Egyptian academic Dr. Abd Al-Wahhab Al-Masiri, the author of the Arabic-language eight-volume Encyclopedia of Jews, Judaism, and Zionism, who has written a book about the Protocols titled The Protocols, Judaism, and Zionism and who said that the Protocols are inauthentic and "100% laughable and foolish plagiarism."[11] Notably, a new approach towards Judaism has emerged in the most morally advanced Arab country, the UAE, which in recent years has launched interfaith dialogues.

Poll: Majority of Arab Youth in UAE, Egypt and Morocco Support Normalization with Israel
Arab youth in the United Arab Emirates and Morocco, two signatories to the Abraham Accords, strongly support the normalization of ties with Israel, according to the 2023 Arab Youth Survey. Young Arabs in Egypt also strongly favor normalization with Israel, while the majority of respondents in other Arab countries from Algeria to Iraq to Saudi Arabia, and including Bahrain, another signatory to the Accords, oppose warmer ties with the Jewish state by large margins.

When it comes to the views of Arab youth about Israel more generally, 86% of respondents view the Jewish state as an enemy of their home country.

Two-thirds of those polled in the survey, which was released yesterday by the global communications firm ASDA’A BCW, said that current “tensions” between Iran, Israel and “some Western countries” — such as the U.S. — will eventually result in war. The U.S., however, continues to hold sway over the region in the eyes of young Arabs, who named it No. 1 among countries felt to have “the most influence on the Arab world.”

Regarding Russia’s war against Ukraine, the majority of young Arabs saw diplomatic negotiations as ultimately leading to a resolution. On the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, however, young Arabs, especially in North Africa and the Levant region, do not see a resolution coming soon, and only one-third of all respondents feel the situation is getting “adequate attention and focus” from the Arab world.

For this year’s Arab Youth Survey, the 15th to date, researchers conducted 3,600 interviews with individuals ages 18-24 between March 27 and April 12 in 18 countries and 53 cities across the Middle East and North Africa, to gauge the overall attitude of the “Arab world’s largest demographic.” The survey’s margin of error is 1.6%.

On the normalization question, 75% of young Arabs in the UAE, 73% in Egypt and 50% in Morocco “strongly support” or “somewhat support” ties with Israel. In Bahrain, the figure dropped to 30%, with 53% “strongly opposing” or “somewhat opposing” normalization with Israel. Of the other 14 countries included in the survey, most saw opposition percentages in the 80s and 90s, with respondents in Iraq and the Palestinian Territories both 100% against warmer ties.
Arab youth survey offers a glimpse of emerging positions on regional developments, Israel, and Iran

Pew: Americans worry more about international terror than unemployment
Both domestic and international terrorism ranked low on a list of items that concern Americans in a recent Pew Research Center report. But more Americans said that domestic (34%) and international (30%) terrorism are a very big problem as opposed to unemployment (24%).

Democrats and those who lean left were likelier than Republicans and those who lean right to be concerned about domestic terror (41% to 25%), while those numbers flipped, more or less, when it comes to international terrorism, with 36% of Republicans saying it’s a very big problem compared to just 23% of Democrats.

Overall, respondents found other issues much more concerning, including inflation (65%), healthcare affordability (64%), the ability for parties to work together across the aisle (62%), drug addiction (61%), gun violence (60%) and violent crime (59%).

Some of those concerns also divided along partisan lines, with more Democrats than Republicans expressing grave concern about healthcare costs (73% to 54%) and gun violence (81% to 38%), while Republicans were more concerned than Democrats about inflation (77% to 52%), drug addiction (64% to 56%) and violent crime (64% to 52%).

Republicans also worried much more about the federal budget deficit (72% to 39%), state of moral values (69% to 39%) and illegal immigration (70% to 25%), while Democrats were much more concerned about climate change (64% to 14%) and racism (55% to 14%).
US Increases Aid to UNRWA Despite Concerns About Antisemitism Taught in Its Schools
The US Department of State has increased its 2023-24 contribution to the UN agency assisting Palestinian refugees despite widespread concern that antisemitism and jihadi violence is openly taught in schools it administers in the Palestinian territories.

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), founded in 1949 to provide humanitarian and social services to Palestinian refugees, will receive an additional $16.2 million this year, the State Department announced on Wednesday, bringing the total dollar amount it will rake in from the US under a framework agreement finalized in April to $223 million. Since 2021, the US has provided UNRWA $940 million.

On Thursday, Israeli education watchdog Impact-se, citing numerous reports it has authored about antisemitic teachers and curricular materials in UNRWA administered schools, criticized the funding boost.

“UNRWA not only teaches the hate filled Palestinian curriculum but produces its own extremist teaching materials,” Impact-se CEO Marcus Sheff said on Thursday in a press release. “The US seems to be bucking the global trend in increasing its funding to UNRWA while the organization does nothing to stop the hate teaching.”

The announcement of additional funding for UNRWA comes amid repeated calls for defunding the agency from US lawmakers.

In May, Congressman Brad Sherman (D-CA) reintroduced the “Peace and Tolerance in Palestinian Education Act,” which would enforce reporting and oversight of educational materials produced by UNRWA, and earlier this year, Congressman Chip Roy (R-TX) introduced legislation that would make its funding contingent on the completion of an annual audit conducted by the Secretary of State.

Examples of antisemitic content described in previous Impact-se reports include a grammar lesson that uses the sentence, “The Palestinians sacrifice their blood to liberate Jerusalem,” and “Arabic Drill Cards” for 9th graders that say, “When the [Muslim] nation is negligent in protecting al-Aqsa, then the Jews will dare to defile it.” Additionally, Israel does not appear on any maps.
UK watchdog asked to look at Foreign Office over opaqueness on Palestinian aid
Pro-Israel activists in the United Kingdom have complained to a national watchdog that monitors transparency in government over a ministry’s alleged failure to provide information on funding suspected to be going to Palestinian terrorists.

B’nai B’rith UK and the nonprofit We Believe in Israel last month contacted the Information Commissioner’s Office with a request to look into why the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office has not responded to requests to provide — under the Freedom of Information act — clarity on “how British aid to the Palestinian Authority is being audited, with a view to establishing whether or not taxpayers’ money is being used to support, facilitate, or incentivise terrorism,” the pro-Israel groups wrote in a statement Wednesday.

The Department for International Development, a now-defunct government office that has been absorbed into the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office, had ignored a similar request by UK Lawyers for Israel in 2018. But the department eventually divulged relevant documents following intervention by the Information Commissioner’s Office, acting at the behest of the lawyers’ group.

“Following the shocking murder of the Dee women earlier this year, it became apparent that British aid to the Palestinian Authority must be subject to appropriate scrutiny,” Luke Akehurst, director of We Believe in Israel, said in the statement.

In April, Palestinian terrorists killed Lucy Dee, a dual citizen of Israel and the United Kingdom, and her two daughters, Maia and Rina, in a shooting attack in the West Bank.

Israel and many Western countries accuse the Palestinian Authority of incentivizing terrorism, including by paying stipends to convicted terrorists in Israeli prisons or their families.

“Our government must not be complicit with this, and the purpose of our FOI request was simply to scrutinize how our taxpayers’ money is used when sent to the PA,” Akehurst said.
Seth Mandel: Richman’s Eight
The most surprising thing about the pro-phets of Israel, Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel once wrote, is that they “were tolerated at all by their people.” The prophet “alienates the wicked as well as the pious, the cynics as well as the believers.” Yet the prophet of Israel has a saving grace: He “begins with a message of doom; he concludes with a message of hope.”

While Heschel was writing about the biblical prophets, he might as well have been describing the eight Zionist figures the historian Rick Richman profiles in And None Shall Make Them Afraid: Eight Stories of the Modern State of Israel. It is a cogent telling of the rebirth of the Jewish state and the men and women who mobilized their co-religionists against hopelessness and resignation. In doing so, they “reflect[ed] the intellectual and social revolutions that Zionism and Americanism brought to the world”—namely, “the struggle between free societies and their totalitarian enemies.”

Four are Americans: Louis Brandeis, Golda Meir, Ben Hecht, and Ron Dermer (Meir was born in Kyiv but became a U.S. citizen at 19). Four are European: Theodor Herzl, Chaim Weizmann, Vladimir Jabotinsky, and Abba Eban. Herzl, the Viennese journalist who injected the concept of a reconstituted Jewish state into the bloodstream of global politics, felt the weighty delirium of prophecy more than most. “I have more than once been afraid I was losing my mind,” he confided to his diary. “This is how tempestuously the trains of thought have raced through my soul. A lifetime will not suffice to carry it all out. But I shall leave behind a spiritual legacy. To whom? To all men.… I think life for me has ended and world history begun.” Herzl was living the life of an emancipated Jew and didn’t experience anti-Semitism personally until an incident involving his law-school fraternity in 1883. Just over a decade later, his home city of Vienna would elect an explicitly anti-Semitic government. During his travels as a writer, he observed the status of the Jews of Europe and understood that the idea of the emancipated Jew was a fiction. There was no alternative to self-determination. Thus began Herzl’s new career, which we might call confrontational Zionism. He criticized the great Jewish philanthropists of the age as failures, wrote The Jewish State, and organized the groundbreaking First Zionist Congress, which brought Jewish thinkers and leaders together from around the world to set to work making the Jewish state a reality.

Like the prophets, Herzl faced scorn and ridicule from the Jewish community. The London-based Jewish Chronicle, a voice of establishment Jewish news and opinion in Western Europe, panned Herzl’s idea as “hastened, if not dictated, by panic.”
Could Roosevelt Have Saved Millions?
The U.S. and the Holocaust, the PBS documentary series directed by Ken Burns, Lynn Novick, and Sarah Botstein, has received much attention and largely positive reviews since its first showing in September 2022. Now, in an essay for the New York Review of Books called “The Millions We Failed to Save” (June 22, 2023), Ruth Franklin follows and enlarges upon the material in the film, arguing, as did the Burns team, that the Roosevelt administration failed to do what was necessary—and, she believes, possible—to save the European Jews who were to perish in the death camps of World War II. Her Exhibit A is the well-known family of Anne Frank, all of whom, except Anne’s father, Otto, who lived to tell her story, died at Belsen. It’s a compelling narrative—and the Burns film has some unforgettable footage of pro-Nazi activities in America—but I think it is also curiously misleading. As myself a Jewish refugee from the Nazis—now, at 91, one of a dying breed—let me attempt some clarification.

First and foremost, the refugee problem was not just a matter of getting into the U.S., as Franklin and Burns would have it, but of getting out of Austria (or Germany or the Netherlands, etc.). In 1933, when Hitler came to power in Germany, the Nazis were at first eager to have as many Jews leave as possible. In 1934 or ’35, the Frank family could have obtained a visa to the U.S., especially with the sponsorship of the wealthy and prominent Nathan Straus Jr. But the Catch-22, even in these early years, is that no one was allowed to take money or material goods out of Germany or the nations it controlled. Whatever his reason—America probably seemed too remote, too alien, or perhaps he had hopes of recovering his business—Otto Frank took his family to the Netherlands, which soon fell into German hands. By July 1941, Nazi Germany ordered U.S. consulates in all Nazi-occupied territories to close. After this, until the end of the war in 1945, legal immigration—not just to the U.S. but to any country—was all but impossible. The Otto Frank case is thus something of a red herring.

I was 6 1/2 when I left Vienna on March 13, 1938. I was one of the lucky ones. But it wasn’t only luck. In Vienna, my paternal grandfather had had the foresight to put a little money into a Swiss bank account. My family of four, together with my father’s sister and her family, as well as Grandfather Mintz—nine people in all—left secretly a day after the Nazi Anschluss of March 12. By March 13, the only border still open was the Swiss one: The Hungarian border had just shut down. We left on the night train to Zurich with four suitcases, leaving behind an apartment full of furniture, books, clothing, family photographs—everything. We never saw any of it again. At the Innsbruck border, we were taken off the train and the adults body-searched; all the cash at hand was confiscated.

Once in Zurich, application for a visa could begin, and it is true, as Franklin tells it, that we had to have a sponsor, in our case a second cousin from Mannheim, who had left Germany a few years earlier. The wait for the visa took about three months: We lived frugally in a little pensione and then in Rome with my aunt Susi, who had married an Italian. We sailed on the Veendam to Hoboken in August 1938. The scariest part, as I remember it, was the cross country train ride from Rome to Rotterdam. At every border crossing, we had to get off the train and go to the police station to get a permit to continue. At any point, we might have been sent back to Vienna.

No room for antisemites - opinion
Outside of this individual case, the Bar Association could strengthen its policies and procedures. Rather than indulge in the White House’s waffling about the proper definition of antisemitism, the Bar should come out strongly in favor of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s definition: “Antisemitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.”

This would put the US in the company of several dozen countries as well as various EU and UN bodies. Denying antisemites admission to the bar and adopting the IHRA definition sends a message to all current and future American lawyers: Antisemitism has no place in the legal profession.

Of course, the Bar Association is not the nation’s only accreditation entity. Doctors, nurses, accountants, financial advisers and many others must subject themselves to evaluations, oaths and tests, all of which are prime opportunities for these professions to combat antisemitism.

Why do we need proactive stands by the nation’s professional bodies? Because what we’ve done to date hasn’t worked. The familiar theater of an antisemitic remark has only emboldened those who traffic in slurs against Jewish people: The speaker is sanctioned, they apologize, visit the Holocaust Memorial and all is forgiven.

If antisemitism merely results in a slap on the wrist, a trip to Jerusalem, or a donation to an organization perceived to be fighting antisemitism, hateful rhetoric and conduct will continue apace.

If, however, the future doctors and lawyers of America are warned that Jew hatred is professionally prohibited, we could witness a sea change. Those who amplify centuries-old bile would think twice. No commencement speaker would casually rail against Israel from a law school podium. We would deprive these hatreds of oxygen and meaningfully reduce antisemitism.

In the face of a striking rise in the unutterable and unthinkable, we must be unequivocal. Let the Biden national plan lead to an actual national commitment – beginning with America’s professional associations setting standards against antisemitism that will make a difference and send a message.
Media Watchdog Launches Website With Resources for Fighting Antisemitism in Education
A nonprofit that counters anti-Israel bias in education has launched a new website containing resources that it claims will help teachers, students, and families fight antisemitism at K-12 schools and college campuses across the United States.

Announced on Wednesday by the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting and Analysis (CAMERA), shares methods for tracking curricular bias, materials on the ancient and modern history of Israel, and includes a page showing potential legal options for those who have experienced antisemitic discrimination that was motivated by anti-Zionism.

“In 2021, we founded the CAMERA Education Institute to fight for academic integrity and combat attempts to turn America’s schools into breeding grounds for hatred and turmoil,” said CAMERA representative Steven Stotsky. “The website is a hub of essential information and support. No one student or family can do it alone. The CAMERA institute unites people from across America who seek to restore accurate, fact-based educational content to our nation’s schools.”

CAMERA executive director Andrea Levin noted that the organizations has “decades of experience in countering bias and falsehoods in education materials” and described the new website as an “exciting expansion” of those efforts.

“We’re finding enthusiastic interest across the country in what we offer,” Levin added.

The website’s launch comes amid a deluge of news reports, lawsuits, and federal inquiries prompted by anti-Zionist and antisemitic activity on college campuses.

The UK's stand against BDS: Local bias and foreign policy - opinion
The Economic Activity of Public Bodies (Overseas Matters) bill published this week is a profoundly important legislative step by the UK government. While eventual legislation will have domestic application, the mischief against which it is directed concerns the subversion of UK foreign relations by public authorities through certain acts or statements of disapproval. During a particularly fraught period of geopolitical realignment, ensuring that foreign relations are not undermined is absolutely vital.

The bill responds to repeated attempts by activists supporting the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against the State of Israel to corral public authorities into passing resolutions or taking action to advance their cause. They advocate boycotts of the sovereign State of Israel as well as independent companies they deem to be its proxies – despite the facts and the law saying otherwise.

The day job for public authorities is statute-based and therefore clear. For local authorities, the clue is in the name. They are concerned with local issues: potholes, garbage collection and homelessness. To step into the international arena requires a quantum leap.

Stepping into the international arena
It is do-it-yourself foreign policy. In this case, it comes at the cost of community cohesion and risks giving the impression that UK foreign policy is multifaceted and thus woolly at the edges. Local council resolutions in support of BDS certainly do not contribute to peaceful coexistence 4,000 km. away, and they certainly do not fill in the potholes or get people off the streets.

Last year, in one of the most eloquent and masterful speeches ever delivered in the House of Commons, MP Robert Jenrick observed the effect of the curious obsession with BDS by some local government pension scheme administrators. He postulated, “Pity this poor individual, who, instead of going about his normal work as a respectable, hard-working local government officer, must suddenly spend hours, days, weeks or months attempting to understand the intricacies of the Israel-Palestine question.”

The bill, therefore, provides that public authorities must not have regard to a territorial consideration in a way that would cause a reasonable observer of the decision-making process to conclude that the decision was influenced by political or moral disapproval of foreign state conduct. It applies to both procurement decisions and fund investment decisions made by the scheme manager of a funded local government scheme. For some schemes, this may therefore require revisions to their environmental, social and governance (ESG) policies.

Following backlash, group says video on ‘woke antisemitism’ will not be reposted
A controversial video that sparked backlash after blaming “woke ideology” for a rise in antisemitism will not be going back online in its current form, said the CEO of the group that produced it.

The video, created by a global coalition called the Combat Antisemitism Movement, first went online in early June and drew broader attention in recent days after a reporter for The Forward, Arno Rosenfeld, began asking questions about its content.

Titled “What is Woke Antisemitism?,” the video claims that “wokeism, an ideology which purportedly calls for diversity, equity and inclusion, fan[s] the flames of antisemitism” and says that progressive ideas about race and class fuel bigotry against Jews.

Two major US Jewish groups left the coalition, which presents itself as broad-based and nonpartisan, over the video. The Jewish Federations of North America, an umbrella for Jewish communal federations nationwide, told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that it rescinded its partnership on Friday after Combat Antisemitism did not immediately remove the video and would not rejoin unless the video was permanently removed.

The Jewish Council for Public Affairs, a national liberal public policy group, likewise ended its partnership in the movement. The group’s CEO, Amy Spitalnick, told The Forward that the video was “deeply disturbing and concerning.”

Combat Antisemitism wrote in a statement on Twitter on Sunday that “we have decided to temporarily suspend the distribution of the video,” with the goal of “fostering a broad consensus.”

Sacha Roytman Dratwa, the CEO of Combat Antisemitism, has confirmed to JTA that the video will not be going back up.

“The final decision was taken a few days ago,” he said. “We are reviewing the content to make something that will appeal to a broader audience.”
Defiant activists say they WILL screen Corbyn film at Glastonbury
Activists are planning to show the controversial film about Jeremy Corbyn at Glastonbury Festival tonight despite an earlier decision by the festival organisers to cancel it.

Reel News, an activist video collective, wrote on Twitter that Oh Jeremy Corbyn: The Big Lie would be shown at 9pm on Thursday night in the “Green Futures Field”.

The Board of Deputies had expressed "deep concern" over the film, accusing it of spreading “hateful conspiracy theories” about the former Labour leader’s time in office.

Board President Marie van der Zyl wrote a letter to Glastonbury organisers Michael and Emily Eavis urging them to cancel the screening, which it did on Monday.

According to Platform Films - which made the film but is not known to have any connection with Reel News - Corbyn was a victim of a "concerted smear campaign" and that current Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer was "waging a witch-hunt in the party".

Norman Thomas, of Platform Films, said Monday's decision to cancel the screening was “disgraceful”.

In a statement shared with the PA news agency, Thomas blamed the cancellation on "vicious outside pressure".

He said: “An outside pressure group has declared war on our film. They wrote to the festival's sponsors... and whipped up huge storm of complaints about the film claiming, without any foundation whatsoever, that the film is antisemitic."

PreOccupiedTerritory: Use My Pronouns! Also, I Override The Wishes Of 75% Israeli Arabs By Calling Them ‘Palestinians’ by Louise Offerman, 2LBGTQIA+ activist (satire)
It is a simple matter of empathy and consideration. You have no right to impose your terminology and sensibilities on me and how I relate to the world. Our movement is even considering promoting legislation to mandate the use of preferred pronouns. That is how important this issue has become. If you refer to me as “him” – which I used to be – or “her” – which I also used to be – you are committing literal trans genocide. Also, we must only refer to those Arabs who hold Israeli passports, vote in Israeli elections, identify as Israeli citizens, want to remain Israeli citizens, and represent more than seven tenths of the country’s population, by a term that once only meant “Jews” but was repurposed, under Soviet influence, to refer to Arabs who rejected coexistence with Jews and now implies a desire to see Israel destroyed and replaced by another Arab state.

Do not tread on my identity! My identity, as reflected in my pronouns, speaks to who I am in the deepest sense, at least until I change my mind about it when it stops generating the attention I seek. Maybe the I will subsume my sense of self and value into the plight of Palestinian citizens of Israel, a moniker with which perhaps ten percent of Israeli Arabs agree reflects who they are.

Now more than ever, we must embrace the principle of decolonizing our spaces, which means not asserting our outsider understanding and preferences on the people of color who live elsewhere. That is why I insist we call all the Arabs in Israel and Palestine Palestinians, to reflect my desired vision of how things must work out there.

When someone tells you who they are, believe them.
NY Times “Half-Reporting” Covers for Palestinian Extremism — Toward Israel and Uyghurs
The joint statement had already been publicized early in the morning of June 14 (Eastern Time). And the New York Times story, published online that day, was updated later that morning and again that evening. But the piece said nothing about Palestinian backing for a Chinese crackdown that, as the paper had previously reported, is believed by some observers to amount to crimes against humanity or even genocide.

Why? It’s not that the paper is generally disinterested in the uncomfortable facets of international relationships. About Hungarian-Israeli relations, for example, the Times made a point of telling readers that Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu “has increasingly embraced illiberal democracies like that of Hungary — whose far-right prime minister, Viktor Orban, arrived in Jerusalem for a friendly visit only hours before the vote.”

In this story, though, there is nothing illiberal about Abbas’s Chinese partners. Nothing authoritarian. Nothing repressive. Instead, readers are told, in what might be the story’s harshest language, that “Mr. Xi has been working to burnish his image as a force for global peace in recent months.”

But the reason for these omissions has less to do with China than with their Palestinian co-signers, whose extremism vis-a-vis Israel the New York Times too frequently whitewashes.

The whitewashes certainly extend to world of international diplomacy, too. In early 2016, for example, Benjamin Netanyahu critiqued a statement by the US ambassador to Israel, saying that statement was “unacceptable and incorrect.” Just fourteen months later, Mahmoud Abbas called the subsequent ambassador an overall “son of a dog.” The Times quickly reported on the former. It ignored the latter news.

But that, after all, is how the paper’s half-reporting tends to cover — and cover-up.
Islamist hate cleric's talk cancelled after GB News investigation
A Islamist hate cleric’s talk has been cancelled after a GB News investigation.

Enayet Ullah Abbasi was due to speak at a venue in London this evening.

But after the council were told about his comments which included him saying those who critcised the Prophet Muhammad should have their head “chopped off” and praising of 9/11 terrorists, the event was scrapped.

GB News spoke to the venue in East London who confirmed talks with organisers, police and Newham Council resulted in the conference being pulled.

Yesterday he delivered a speech in Birmingham after arriving in the UK last week.

And GB News understands Abbasi spoke in Nottingham as part of a country-wide tour.

The Home Office was blasted for allowing the Bangladeshi hate cleric into the country.

GB News revealed he had previously said: “If anybody dares to criticise our Prophet (Mohammed) that person should be declared as a disbeliever and hence his/her head should be chopped off.

The hate cleric also slammed the late Queen Elizabeth II and called Charles Darwin the “father of weed addicts” having discredited his evolution theory.

And in a sick rant Abassi praised Osama Bin Laden, the orchestrator of the September 11 attacks in America, and founder of the Taliban, Mullah Omar.

The ever-present antisemitism of George Orwell
Here’s your starter for ten. Which major 20th-century English author wrote these words:
“The shopman was a red-haired Jew, an extraordinarily disagreeable man … it would have been a pleasure to flatten the Jew’s nose if only one could have afforded it.”

Or these: “Have I ever told you, mon ami, that … it was considered bad form to spit on a Jew? Yes, we thought a Russian officer’s spittle was too precious to be wasted on a Jew…”

Last one: “In a corner by himself a Jew, muzzle down in the plate, was guiltily wolfing bacon.”

The headline of this article suggests the correct, if surprising, answer. All three quotations are taken from George Orwell’s first published book, Down and Out in Paris and London (Gollancz 1933). The first two occur early in his Paris days; the last when he is in a Tower Hill coffee shop back in London.

Three years later, he ended his review of a Sholem Asch book, “if you want antisemitism explained the best book to read is the Old Testament”. In 1939, he concluded another book review similarly: “The Old Testament is largely a literature of hatred and self-righteousness. No duties towards foreigners are recognised, extermination of enemies is enjoined as a religious duty, Jehovah is a tribal deity of the worst type.”

Admirers of Orwell (among whom I count myself) have long been troubled by the strain of casual and perhaps not-so-casual antisemitism found in his published work, diary entries and private letters, especially in the 1930s. The almost schizophrenic contrast between his authorial hostility to these anonymous, nameless “Jews”, identified only by their religion, and his long friendships with individual Jewish publishers (Victor Gollancz and Fred Warburg) and writers (Arthur Koestler, T.R. (Tosco) Fyvel, Julian Symons, Jon Kimche, Evelyn Anderson and others) remains puzzling.
Finland’s new economy minister in hot water for past Hitler joke, neo-Nazi ties
Finnish politician Vilhelm Junnila apologized Thursday for remarks indicating sympathy toward Adolf Hitler, which drew further attention to the economic affairs minister’s far-right connections.

The incident occurred during an event hosted by a local branch of Junnila’s far-right Finns party in Raisio in March. There, Junnila remarked that the local party chairman’s election number was 88, the same number that Junnila himself had in 2019 elections. The number 88 is widely recognized among neo-Nazis as a symbol for the “Heil Hitler,” due to H being the eighth letter in the alphabet, making 88 signify “HH.”

“First of all, congratulations on an excellent election number. I know it’s a winning card,” Junnila said. “Of course, this 88 refers to the two letters H, which are not discussed further,” he said, drawing laughter. Following his remarks, someone in the audience shouted “Heil Hitler” and then quietly apologized, according to the Finnish tabloid Iltalehti.

The surfacing of the incident created a headache for Finland’s new right-wing government, which was sworn in on Tuesday. In response, Junnila wrote on his Facebook page: “Over the years, I have joked in a way that, looking back, seems foolish and immature. I have acted incorrectly, and I apologize for my actions.”

The remarks stirred discussions about Junnila’s connections to the far-right. The Yie news site reported that in 2019 Junnila spoke in front of neo-Nazis during a memorial event for the 2017 terror attack in Turku, in which two women were stabbed to death. The event’s name, “Flower 188,” also featured the problematic number.
Wyoming County Renames ‘Swastika Lake’
A historical society in Wyoming is renaming a lake to address concerns that its old name is suggestive of Nazism.

“Swastika Lake” in Albany County will now be known as Knight Lake, a name chosen to commemorate the memory of Samuel H. Knight, a former resident and University of Wyoming geology professor, according to The Casper Star Tribune, a local newspaper.

The paper reported on Wednesday that a proposal to change the name received the backing of New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft.

“While we appreciate the history and original meaning of the swastika symbol, it has unfortunately become synonymous with one of the greatest atrocities in human history after being appropriated by the German Nazi Party in 1920,” Kraft wrote to county officials, speaking on behalf Foundation to Combat Antisemitism (FCAS), a nonprofit he founded to educate the public about antisemitism.

“We believe there are many more efficient ways to educate the public around the history and origin of the word such as Holocaust education in schools and educational resources, with the help of reputable organizations that can be made easily accessible to anyone who is interested in learning more,” he added.
Jewish Far-Right Former French Presidential Candidate Éric Zemmour Allegedly Targeted with ‘Antisemitic’ Insults at Train Station
An executive of France’s national labor union, the CGT, was taken into police custody after he allegedly hurled antisemitic insults at Éric Zemmour — the Jewish far right maverick who launched a failed bid for the country’s presidency in 2022 — as the two waited for a train on Wednesday afternoon to the city of Limoges in southwestern France.

Contradictory accounts of the encounter have emerged, however, with Zemmour and his associates insisting that his adversary, Frédéric Tronche, a prominent CGT activist, had repeatedly asked him whether he was taking the train to the Auschwitz concentration camp in Nazi-occupied Poland. Tronche and his colleagues in the CGT maintain that he had asked Zemmour whether he was taking the train to Vichy, the seat of France’s Nazi puppet government during the German occupation of World War II.

French media outlets reported that Tronche was arrested at 4PM, just after the exchange with Zemmour, and then released later that evening. An investigation into whether Tronche used “racial and religious insults” in a public place has meanwhile been opened by the public prosecutor in Limoges, where Zemmour had been heading for a public meeting to launch his new memoir.

According to Zemmour, Tronche asked him “are you taking the train to Auschwitz?” and joked sarcastically, “I didn’t know this was the train to Dachau” — a concentration camp operated by the Nazi regime on German soil — reportedly in front of dozens of witnesses.

The CGT angrily disputed this account, with its general secretary, Sophie Binet, posting on Twitter that as a result of his remark about Vichy, Tronche had been arrested for antisemitism. Separately, Thomas Portes, a left-wing member of parliament, protested that “while the racist Zemmour was on the same train as him, [Tronche] asked the conductor if the destination was ‘Vichy’. For this he is [in custody] and he is accused of antisemitism. Shame!”
Home Secretary and Jewish community leaders say lack of antisemitic hate crime arrests is 'unacceptable'
The lack of action in bringing the perpetrators of antisemitic hate crimes to justice “is unacceptable”, Jewish Community leaders and the Home Secretary have agreed.

The point was made during a meeting of a new government taskforce set up to improve the police response to antisemitism this week.

Known as the Jewish Community Crime, Policing and Security Taskforce, its establishment was ordered in March by Suella Braverman.

During the meeting, it was pointed out that while people wearing T-shirts making fun of Hillsborough stadium disaster victims have in the past been prosecuted but protesters waving banners bearing swastikas have not - a discrepancy that those present agreed was “unacceptable”.

Braverman chaired the meeting on Tuesday. Also present were the policing minister Chris Philp, CST chief Mark Gardner, Matt Jukes, the Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner in charge of special operations including counter-terrorism; senior officers from a further six police forces covering areas with large Jewish communities, and representatives from the College of Policing, which issues guidelines for police training.

“It was a highly focused meeting that tackled the question of how the police can improve their response to antisemitism head-on,” one source who was present told the JC.

Six startups make World Economic Forum tech pioneers list
Six Israeli startups have been selected among this year’s World Economic Forum’s (WEF) Technology Pioneers, a group of 100 tech firms chosen out of hundreds of candidates in the fields of generative artificial intelligence to alternative proteins, renewable energy and healthcare that will become part of a community of firms that are “poised to have a significant impact on business and society.”

First launched in 2000, the WEF’s Technology Pioneers is a community of early growth-stage tech startups companies from around the world that are involved in the design, development and deployment of new technologies and innovations. The 2023 cohort is “forging new paths in healthcare, renewable energy and more through cutting-edge technologies,” the WEF said in a statement.

“Selectees are at the forefront of innovation and disruption needed to help us solve the world’s most pressing issues,” said Verena Kuhn, WEF’s head of innovator communities. “We look forward to their contribution to the Forum’s content work that brings together the public and private sector to tackle these global issues.”

This year’s Technology Pioneer cohort includes start-ups from 31 economies, with a third led by a woman chief executive. The US has the highest representation, with 29 companies, followed by China with 12.

Among the six Israeli startups selected is Tel Aviv-based Aporia Technologies, which has developed a monitoring platform for machine learning that enables data science and machine learning teams to improve the performance of their models. It provides real-time monitoring, insights and transparency for artificial intelligence and machine learning models. The platform allows data scientists to proactively monitor anomalies, data drift and performance issues.

Aporia’s “mission to pinpoint misperformance in AI/ML models addresses the greater need for ethical and responsible AI across the globe as technological innovation continues,” the startup said in a statement. Among its clients are Lemonade, Bosch, Munich RE and Sixt.
'Gateway to Africa': Israeli Science Minister in Morocco
Israeli Science Minister Ofir Okunis discusses Israel-Morocco ties and what the future holds for the Abraham Accords countries – with our Reda Bennis.

Norway's Leopard Tanks Protected by Israel's Trophy System
The Norwegian army's 54 state-of-the-art Leopard 2 Main Battle Tanks come fully equipped with the Israeli cutting-edge Trophy active defense system.

Norway purchased the EuroTrophy system from Germany's Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW), in collaboration with General Dynamics European Land Systems and Israeli defense company Rafael.

The Israeli Trophy Active Protection System (APS) is designed to protect tanks and other armored vehicles from anti-tank missiles, RPGs, rockets, and other projectiles.

The system uses radar, electro-optics, and a hard-kill interceptor to detect, track, and neutralize incoming threats.

The Israeli Trophy APS has been successfully deployed in combat situations, including the 2014 conflict in Gaza.

The U.S. has integrated the Trophy APS into its M1 Abrams tanks.
Israel's Elbit to Provide Romanian Army with Surveillance Drones
Israeli defense electronics company Elbit Systems will supply tactical unmanned aerial systems (UASs) to the Romanian Armed Forces, the company said in a statement on Wednesday.

The 180-million-U.S. dollar order from the Romanian Ministry of National Defense includes three Watchkeeper X drone systems, designed and equipped for intelligence, surveillance, and target acquisition missions using artificial intelligence (AI) technology.

The 6.5-meter-long Watchkeepers, developed by Elbit and the French defense company Thales, will be equipped with Elbit's Spectro XR multi-camera systems and advanced communication capabilities.

Using AI, the electro-optical Spectro XR automatically detects and classifies long-range targets in real time.

This system can function day and night and in poor visibility conditions such as fog, humidity, smoke, haze, and dust, and can perform video surveillance on multiple targets and motion detection, according to Elbit.

The incorporation of an innovative video analytics suite within the system effectively diminishes human error during missions, while facilitating the generation of advanced operational insights, it added.

The current order is part of a framework contract signed between the two sides in December last year for the supply of up to seven UASs at a maximum amount of 410 million U.S. dollars.
Israel's Natural Gas Saved Its Economy $87 Billion over Decade
The BDO economic consulting firm in Israel reported that the country has saved over $87 billion over the past decade thanks to natural gas production.

This includes savings of $35 billion in energy costs and $52 billion in pollution-related costs due to the use of gas instead of coal.

At the same time, Israel's total natural gas reserves have grown from 780 billion cubic meters (BCM) in 2012 to 1,087 BCM today, due to additional discoveries and updated estimates of reservoir size.

Amir Foster, CEO of the Israel Natural Gas Association, emphasized that Israel's natural gas industry "has made it immune to the energy crisis that is shaking the world."
Unpacked: 5 Jewish Rebellions You've Never Heard Of
Jews have a long history of rebelling against powers that have tried to quell the free expression of their identity and culture. These five rebellions over the last 2,500 years epitomize the various guerrilla revolts and spiritual revolutions that Jews have fought in the struggle to maintain their Jewish customs and beliefs and assert their right to live as Jews both in their homeland and the Diaspora.

00:00 Intro
00:33 The Maccabean Revolt (AKA Hannuka)
02:25 The Roman Revolts
03:16 The Bar Kokhba Revolt
03:55 The Jewish Diaspora
04:16 The Crypto-Jews
04:43 Spiritual Rebellion
05:55 The Hasidic Revolution
06:32 The Baal Shem Tov
06:57 Chasidim
07:32 The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising
09:01 Modern-Day Jewish Rebellions

37 people signed Israel’s Declaration of Independence. A new podcast explores their legacy.
Israel’s Declaration of Independence has taken central stage this year in the country’s divided politics — sometimes literally, as when Israelis opposed to proposed changes to the judiciary carried a massive version in their protests.

Now, the Declaration of Independence is also the subject of a new podcast from the producers of “Israel Story,” which its creators say is the most listened-to Jewish podcast in the world.

“Signed, Sealed, Delivered?” is a deep dive into Israel’s founding document, called Megillat Haatzmaut in Hebrew. It was conceived before the judicial overhaul proposal as a way to capture the sweep of Israel’s history in advance of its 75th birthday, creator and host Mishy Harman told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency.

Harman said he was interested to learn more about the 37 signatories to the declaration, which plays a quasi-constitutional role in Israeli law, and their descendants.

“It’s sort of like a pointillist painting. When you look at them from afar, you think, well, it’s a pretty monolithic group,” Harman told JTA. “Then when you delve in you see that actually, it was a very diverse group. … I wondered whether, in the 75 years since the signatories put their name on the Megillat Haatzmaut, that diversity had expanded or shrunk.”

The podcast’s original, Hebrew-language incarnation was inspired by NPR’s “This American Life” and weaves together quirky personal anecdotes, interviews and soundscapes to tell the story of Israel beyond the headlines. In 2014, Harman launched a sister podcast in English, now produced in partnership with The Times of Israel and The Jerusalem Foundation.

From a Palestinian-Brooklynite on a hunt for a wife in the Tulkarem Refugee Camp to an Orthodox matchmaker whose dates take place just outside her apartment, the stories featured on the podcast shed light on questions of culture, identity, history and — despite Harman’s avowed efforts — politics.

A decade later, “Israel Story” has several hundreds of thousands of listeners from more than 190 countries around the world, 60% of whom live in North America, according to the podcast’s analysis. Around 50% of listeners are not Jewish.

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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 19 years and 40,000 articles I have been providing accurate, original news that would have remained unnoticed. I've written hundreds of scoops and sometimes my reporting ends up making a real difference. I appreciate any donations you can give to keep this blog going.


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