Monday, September 18, 2023

From Ian:

Mahmoud Abbas's antisemitism should make him a global pariah
Making Abbas an international pariah would send this message clearly and bolster these voices who condemn antisemitism.

It would deprive parts of the Palestinian national movement that soak their struggle in religious, racial, and historic hatred the oxygen to spread and legitimize their antisemitism.

It would thus make the conflict easier to solve, much like other national or political conflicts.

Finally, it would send the important message that hatred against Jews is equal to that of other communities and peoples.

If a politician denied the suffering of other peoples or claimed they were a result of their own actions, they would justifiably be ostracized. However, as some, like British comedian and TV personality David Baddiel, have pointed out recently, with a huge amount of justification, “Jews don’t count,” and antisemitism is treated differently from other forms of racism, creating double standards and discrimination against Jews.

For these, and a myriad of other reasons, it is time that Mahmoud Abbas become an international pariah.

No more justifications, No more excuses. No more distractions.

Abbas is a rabid antisemite, and his ongoing hatred of Jews should rule him out as a partner for peace, a global diplomat, or even a person worthy of a decision-making role.
PreOccupiedTerritory: A Guy Just Can’t Call The Jewish State A Genocidal Apartheid Fourth Reich Without Being Called Antisemitic by Zach Foster (satire)
Princeton, September 18 – Zionists and their defenders love to claim that “criticism similar to that leveled against any other country cannot be considered antisemitism” (IHRA definition), but when my colleagues and I in the pro-Palestine movement begin pointing out that Israel ethnically cleanses Palestinians by the millions, harvests their organs, controls the banks, the media, and Western governments, suddenly that doesn’t matter anymore, and the “antisemite!” card quickly enters play.

A guy just can’t call the Jewish State a genocidal apartheid Fourth Reich without being called antisemitic. Certainly not anymore.

It’s quite the coup by those narrative-shaping, Hasbara-pushing Zionazis. As soon as you suggest the movement for Jewish self-determination, alone among all other movements for ethnic self-determination, is a racist endeavor, those AIPAC stooges will mob you and smother you with accusations of Nazism. Listen, just because the Mufti of Jerusalem allied with Hitler, agreed to facilitate a Final Solution to the Jews if the Wehrmacht ever made it to the British Mandate of Palestine, and fomented anti-Jewish violence wherever he trod, doesn’t mean I can’t engage in a little bit of Holocaust inversion. Then when I do, I’m the bad guy all of a sudden. Not the people I’m accusing of a new Holocaust with no evidence.

I have a PhD from Princeton – that should mean I carry credibility. But noooo, look who controls the media and makes self-righteous noises when I offer my tendentious take on things. Every time I deny Arabs any moral agency, or suggest that history begins with the Muslim conquest of the Holy Land in the eighth century, the usual suspects come tweeting, calling me all sorts of names. Jews were protected under Muslim rule! Protected from whom or what, I’m not certain, because obviously Islamic rule is peaceful, tolerant, and would never promote anti-Jewish sentiment as a way to divide and rule potentially restive populace. From whom could Jews possibly need protection? Yet the Muslim rulers offered it. It’s those ungrateful Jews for whom that was insufficient.
Call Me Back Podcast: Unprecedented polarization, or has Israel been here before? With Meir Soloveichik
Items discussed in this episode
“The Genius of Israel: The Surprising Resilience of a Divided Nation in a Turbulent“ World
“Providence and Power: Ten Portraits in Jewish Statesmanship“
“Not Everything is Tisha B’Av”

Jonathan Tobin: Academic freedom isn’t an excuse for antisemitism
We’re living in a time when American academic institutions claim to be dedicated to eradicating prejudice. That’s supposedly the point of the pledges to support the diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) mantra that has not merely been universally adopted by colleges and universities, but also the corporate world and the Biden administration. Or is it? As a controversy at the University of Pennsylvania illustrates, the support for that woke DEI catechism has nothing to do with making the country a place where ethnic, religious or racial bias is not merely marginalized but condemned.

The Ivy League institution has found itself enmeshed in a controversy caused by the holding of a “Palestine Writes Literature Festival” on its Philadelphia campus this week. In principle, there should be nothing controversial about a conference devoted to a particular group’s literature. But this event seems designed more to provoke outrage than it is to further scholarly sessions or papers about a literary niche.

The lengthy announced list of speakers who will appear on Penn’s campus for this gathering is replete with some of the most notorious antisemites in the world.

That label accurately describes the work of some of the Palestinian Arab writers who will be present. It’s hardly surprising since the Palestinian variety is unlike almost every other form of nationalism and national literary revival since the late 19th century.

Scholarly work is not focused primarily on celebrating a particular historic cultural or literary tradition that would make it distinct from those associated with the Arabs of the Middle East or even just the area the Ottoman Turkish occupiers of the region once referred to as “South Syria.” Instead, Palestinian literature has been a function of the nakba or “disaster” narrative—a never-ending recitation of alleged wrongs and suffering stemming from the return of the Jewish people to their ancient homeland and the creation of the modern-day State of Israel. Like Palestinian politics and national identity, Palestinian writing has been inextricably linked to a futile century-old war against Zionism, in which an effort is made to turn back the clock to 1948 or even 1917 when the British issued the Balfour Declaration.

That’s why so much of the content of the conference, including sessions about Jews “appropriating Palestinian cuisine” and the history of the area, are drenched in contempt for Jews and denial of Jewish history.

But the fact that “Palestine Writes” will also be featuring international antisemites like Pink Floyd co-founder Roger Waters (last seen in Berlin cavorting in a Nazi-like uniform at one of his concerts/propaganda sessions) and African-American commentator Marc Lamont Hill (best known for his declaration of support for a Palestine “from the river to the sea” and Israel’s eradication) speaks volumes about its actual purpose. They are not Palestinian writers, academics or literary experts tasked to explain why exponents of hatred for Israel are “marginalized,” even though those who support such a view are lionized in the academy while Zionists are the ones who have been driven out of educational institutions. They are there because the event is clearly aimed at promoting the antisemitic BDS narrative of hatred for Israel and Jews.

Rebel News: Kian Explains Why He Was Wrong To Hate Israel
'Many people might not know, but Bethlehem used to be a Christian town,' said Sheila. 'Now it's behind the security fence, and it's a majority Muslim town.'

MEMRI: Twenty-Two Years Later, Arab Intellectuals, Influencers, And Social Media Users Continue To Promote Conspiracy Theories About The September 11 Attacks
As Americans commemorated the 22nd anniversary of the tragic events of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and remember the thousands of victims who lost their lives on that day, hundreds of Arab intellectuals and social media users continued to dismiss the idea that Al-Qaeda was behind the attacks, despite Al-Qaeda's own claims to the contrary. Instead, they promote various conspiracy theories about 9/11. Some argue that the U.S. government orchestrated the attacks as a pretext for invading the Arab and Muslim world and stealing their resources, while others question Al-Qaeda's ability to carry out such an attack, instead promoting the theory that the buildings were brought down by bombs, not airplanes. This report will highlight the conspiracy theories presented by Arab intellectuals and influencers on social media platform X, (formerly Twitter).

Iraqi social media influencer Maysoon Asadi, who has over 5,500 followers on X, claimed in a post[1] published on September 12, 2023 that the September 11 attacks were fabricated. She expressed doubts about the ability of airplanes to destroy the Twin Towers and promoted the theory that explosives were detonated as the planes hit the buildings. Additionally, she accused the U.S. of orchestrating terrorism against it and creating both Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State (ISIS).

"Dalham," an X user, described the 9/11 attacks as "The largest operation carried out by the U.S. intelligence agency to find a pretext that allows them to invade the Islamic world, terrorize Arab regimes, and seize oil wealth and other strategic objectives in the Middle East."[2]

Egyptian lawyer and X user Mohamed Sherif wrote on September 10, under the hashtag #September_11: "Look for who has benefited from the #9/11 attacks in America so far, and you will know who is behind these attacks and who executed them. No one could carry out such a meticulously planned and complex bombing without being thoroughly well-aware of the gains that could be achieved through these bombings, whether in the form of political decisions made by countries or organizations or in shaping global public opinion."[3]

Kefah Issa, an X user based in Turkey who describes himself as an open-source IT expert, expressed his strong belief that 9/11 was an inside job. He also claimed that U.S. intelligence "succeeded in pinning the attacks on Al-Qaeda."[4]

Jordanian writer and political analyst Dr. Maysa Almasrri published a post on September 11, 2023, under the hashtag #September_11, in which she wrote: "On a day like this, the Western deception of #ArabTerrorism was skillfully staged and cunningly woven. The plots that assassinated our Arab nations, humanity, and identity continue. Congratulations on the continuing deceit."[5]

Apple News, Where Antisemites Are Always Welcome
Despite Apple CEO Tim Cook’s 2018 public commitment to fight hate by not granting a platform to antisemites, Apple News this month published a syndicated writer who one day earlier spewed unbridled hatred of Jews.

The day before Abdel Bari Atwan’s Sept. 10 column appeared on Apple News (“Washington’s ‘Plan B’ in Syria“), the rabid antisemite penned an editorial at Rai al-Youm reprising Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s hateful theory that Hitler’s Nazism targeted the Jews due to their “social role” as moneylenders. The founder and editor-in-chief of the Arabic news site, Atwan also contributed a few insights of his own, like citing William Shakespeare’s sixteenth century portrayal of Shylock and his “documentation of usury” as justification for Abbas’ bigotry:
Even if he apologizes, President Abbas was not wrong in our opinion, and [the opinion] of many before us. What he said about the Jews, and the reasons why did Adolf Hitler “burn” them, is found in books by the greatest Western historians, who published them at a time when freedom of research was still guaranteed. This is why we demand of him not to apologize

The crime which Abbas has carried out which provoked the Zionist hornets’ nest and its European stragglers took shape during one of his speeches in the revolutionary council of the “Fatah” movement on the 24th of last August, when he said [what is about to follow]. Here, we bring it word-for-word [in fact, Atwan used paraphrases and mispresented them as direct quotations]:

“Adolf Hitler did not kill the Jews because of their religion, and Europe did not hate the Jews because they were Jews, this is untrue. Rather, it was because of their social role, because of usury and money, not because of their religion.”

This avalanche of hatred was met with business as usual at Apple News, which proceeded to republish the English translation of Atwan’s newer op-ed – about the alleged American strategy in Syria – as though nothing had happened.

This month’s dissonance between Cook’s stated commitment to deny a platform to antisemites versus the publication of Atwan immediately following his outburst of bigotry is a direct continuation of the news outlet’s ongoing practice. In 2022, Apple News inexcusably republished Atwan’s exoneration of Palestinian terrorists for the murder of Israeli athletes in the Munich Olympics along with his praise for Abbas’ repugnant incitement accusing Israel of “50 holocausts.”

How much more hatred is required before CEO Cook’s lofty promise to “not to be bystanders as hate tries to make its headquarters in the digital world” actually means something? At this rate, Apple News is on track for making Arab antisemitism as American as apple pie.
Guardian continues its war against IHRA
A Guardian report by Haroon Siddique (“Antisemitism definition used by UK universities leading to ‘unreasonable’ accusations”) represents the latest in a long series of articles and op-eds at the outlet attempting to undermine the IHRA Working Definition of Antisemitism.

IHRA, by far the most widely accepted definition of antisemitism in the world, has, Siddque writes, “come under fire in a report which ​says it has led to 40 cases being brought against students, academics, unions, and societies – 38 of whom have been cleared”. The remaining two cases, we’re told, have yet to conclude.

This data is based on a report by the European Legal Support Center (ELSC) and the British Society for Middle Eastern Studies (Brismes), who argue that IHRA “stifles criticism of Israel and has a chilling effect on free speech.”

So, we’re evidently supposed to be alarmed about the danger to academic freedom posed by a antisemitism definition (that’s been adopted by most universities in the UK) which, even by its critics’ own account, hasn’t actually resulted in anyone being sanctioned.

Not surprisingly, the Brismes report itself includes lies such as this:
[IHRA] delegitimises Palestinian claims to self-determination and opposition to Israel’s discriminatory policies against Palestinians as antisemitism.

IHRA, in fact, does NOT define either idea as antisemitic.

The Brismes report also includes this variation of the Livingstone Formulation, a term which describes the accusation that Jews dishonestly claim antisemitism to silence critics of Israel.
The promotion of the IHRA definition in UK universities and its use in complaints against staff and students is part of a wider context and history of false accusations of antisemitism being levelled against those concerned with Israel’s human rights violations

Let’s recall that the report by the Equality and Human Rights Commission on antisemitism in the Labour Party under Jeremy Corby concluded that such accusations against Jewish Labour members amounted to unlawful antisemitic harassment.
BBC’s Knell gives a narrative driven portrayal of the Oslo Accords
Knell fails to clarify to readers that the Palestinians continue to reject Israel’s right to exist as the Jewish state and makes no attempt to explain how her claim that the PLO “renounced terrorism” lines up with the fact that terrorists from PLO member organisations continued to carry out attacks against Israelis in the years immediately following the signing of the Oslo Accords, during the second Intifada and to this day. Palestinian terrorist organisations belonging to factions which are not party to the PLO such as Hamas are absent from Knell’s portrayal despite the effects of their actions on the outcomes of the Oslo Accords.

Having failed to make any mention of the 269 Israelis murdered in terror attacks in the six years following the signing of the Oslo Accords, Knell jumps straight to a whitewashed portrayal of Camp David and recycles a myth long promoted by the BBC concerning Ariel Sharon’s pre-coordinated visit to what – using PLO approved terminology – she describes as “the al-Aqsa Mosque compound”.
“The collapse of peace talks at Camp David in 2000 was followed by Palestinian fury when Israel’s opposition leader visited Jerusalem’s most sensitive holy site – the al-Aqsa Mosque compound, known to Jews as Temple Mount – seeking to promote Israeli sovereignty there.

The deadly violence of the second Palestinian intifada, or uprising, then left the peace process in tatters and strengthened the hawkish Israeli right-wing.”

A caption to one of the photographs illustrating Knell’s report tells readers that “Israeli checkpoints restrict Palestinians’ movement”, similarly without clarifying that checkpoints came into existence because of Palestinian terrorism.

Knell tells her readers that:
“The last parliamentary elections held in 2006 were won by Fatah’s bitter rival, the Islamist party, Hamas, which is committed to the destruction of Israel. Efforts to form a unity government that the world could accept ultimately failed and in 2007, Hamas seized full control of Gaza, after days of deadly inter-factional fighting. It continues to rule there and the damaging internal political rift persists. Parliament remains suspended.”

However, she refrains from any serious discussion of the question of how agreements signed by a body – the PLO – which does not represent the Palestinian people as a whole could bear fruit or to what extent the “lost hopes” of the Palestinians are to product of their own dysfunctional leadership and internal rivalries.

The interviewees quoted and promoted by Knell in this report include the former PLO legal advisor Diana Buttu, who appears fairly frequently in BBC content – including just a week earlier in Tom Bateman’s report – despite her long record of promoting falsehoods in the media. Additional contributors are Fatah loyalist Sabri Saidam, Palestinian pollster Khalil Shikaki and several vox pop Ramallah residents.

It is therefore hardly surprising that Knell’s long but entirely one-sided article does little to help BBC audiences understand the part played by the Palestinians themselves in failing to bring an end to the conflict. She makes no effort to seriously examine the question of how factors such as Palestinian terrorism – and the related PA funding of terrorists – or Palestinian education have affected the chances of bringing the conflict to an end because her portrayal of the failure of the Oslo Accords and subsequent negotiations is as narrative driven as her tepid portrayal of the factors that lie behind current wave of violence.

Hill Times Column Misrepresents Facts To Falsely Claim Canadians Accept Anti-Israel Claims
In his September 6 opinion column in The Hill Times, “Canadians recognize what their leaders won’t: Israel practices apartheid,” Thomas Woodley trumpeted the results of a poll commissioned by his anti-Israel organization, Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East (CJPME), which purports that roughly one-quarter of Canadians allegedly believe Israel practices “apartheid”.

In his column, Woodley attempted to portray Canada’s federal politicians as being out of touch with Canadians, writing that they support Israel’s alleged “ongoing oppression of Palestinians,” and that “with the latest polling results, it’s now clear that they do so at their own peril.”

Even without entering into any criticism of the methodology or accuracy of the poll itself, there are a number of reasons why the results of the survey do not support the claims being made by Woodley.

According to the poll, only 27 percent of respondents agreed with the position that Israel practices apartheid, compared to three-in-four Canadians who don’t. No reasonable observer would conclude, then, that anything more than a minority of Canadians view Israel in such terms.

To respond to this glaring weakness in his survey results, Woodley evidently gets creative, but that still doesn’t change the facts. Even after Woodley attempts to manipulate the data by baselessly excluding those who said “I don’t know” from the survey results, the conclusion is little changed: the vast majority of Canadians simply do not agree with the contention that Israel is guilty of apartheid.

Earlier this year, another poll carried out by Leger gives additional weight to the conclusion that opposition and hostility to Israel is a decidedly minority view. The poll found that only 28 percent of respondents say they see Israel in an unfavourable light.

More critically, even if this recent survey had in fact reflected what Woodley erroneously claims that they do, it still does not change the fundamental fact that Israel is in no way an apartheid state.

Witness to the Warsaw ghetto: the brave woman who chronicled its horrors and survived
Exactly 77 years ago, on September 18 1946, a Jewish woman, Rachel Auerbach, went to the ruins of a house in Warsaw, the streets unrecognisable after the destruction of the ghetto by the Nazis in April and May 1943.

Auerbach was one of only three survivors of a secret underground writers’ resistance group, known as the Oyneg Shabbos. In the dark days of the ghetto, its convenor, Emanuel Ringelblum, had gathered together a select group — rabbis, journalists, historians — with a single aim, to be the “recording angels” of what was taking place in the Warsaw Ghetto. Ringelblum told his colleagues that they had to bear witness to the genocide of the Jewish people, and to that end, the papers — thousand of documents — of the Oyneg Shabbos group were buried in 1942 and 1943. The intention was to retrieve them when the war finally ended. But Ringelblum, and almost every other member of the Oyneg Shabbos group, did not survive.

On that September day in 1946, Rachel Auerbach was with Hersz Wasser, who also survived, along with his wife. Wasser was the only person alive who knew where the Oyneg Shabbos material was buried, and they were there to witness the unearthing of one section of the massive archive. Inside metal crates and milk churns, there were diaries, playbills, tram and theatre tickets, photographs, and agonising descriptions of the endless deaths of Warsaw’s Jews.

A second section of the Oyneg Shabbos writings was discovered by workmen in 1950. The third section has never been found, though it is thought to be under the basement of what is now the Chinese Embassy in Warsaw.

Rachel Auerbach survived the Warsaw Ghetto by escaping on March 9 1943 — a month before the uprising — and assuming Polish identity. Historian Professor Samuel Kassow says she could pass for Aryan and “had perfect Polish” — she wrote in Polish and Yiddish. She left at Ringelblum’s direction and received information smuggled out from within the ghetto — until there were no Jews left.

Outside the ghetto, Auerbach wrote a heartbreaking tribute to her companions who had died at German hands — Yizkor. And she also wrote a diary, furiously scribbling by candlelight in otherwise near-total darkness while she moved from refuge to refuge. She gave parts of this diary to the director of the Warsaw Zoo, Jan Zabinski, who buried the material for her and returned it after the war.
The Ades hanging in 1948 was the trigger for Iraqi Jews to seek a quick exit
On the 75th anniversary of the hanging of Shafiq Ades (Adas), the Jewish businessman executed in Iraq on trumped-up spying charges for Israel, Nimrod Raphaeli, who lived through the events as a teenager, gave the lecture below to the Bene Naharayim congregation in New York. The lecture conveys a strong sense that the political environment was not out to protect the Jews, but was waging a vicious campaign against them (with thanks: Sami):

The trial and execution of Shafiq Adas are fairly well documented. What I will try to do today is shed light on the political environment that prevailed in the country that led to Shafiq Adas’s tragic end.

For me, the situation is not abstract history.

First of all, I lived through the events. The events I’m describing occurred while I was a teenager 15 or 16 living in Basra.

Second, while he was not my friend, I saw Shafiq Adas many times. Ishaq Zbulun, the husband of my cousin, was Adas’s right-hand man and sat next to him in the office of the car dealership. He always addressed him as Abu Zaki.

The Adas brothers, Ibrahim and Shafiq Adas, were the sole agents of the Ford Motor Co, as well as a few other companies, such as the French tyre company Michelin. Ironically, another two Jewish brothers, Khdhuri and Ezra Meer Lawy, were the sole representatives for General Motors.

The government of Iraq announced martial law hours before the establishment of Israel. The reason for the martial law was allegedly to protect the rear of the Iraqi army units which participated in the war against the new state of Israel.

Initially, the Jews felt that martial law would provide them with sufficient security and prevent the mob from harming them, as was the case in 1941 when a pro-Nazi government instigated violence against the Jewish community, an act commonly referred to as the Farhud. Martial law created four military tribunals, one in Basra, charged with trying so-called “spies, traitors and communists.” But the Jewish community, across Iraq, soon discovered that the martial law was not, as proclaimed by the government, to protect the rear of the Iraqi army but to harass and punish the Jewish community particularly given the poor performance of the Iraqi army in Palestine, where it was part of the coalition of five Arab armies which had come together to destroy the nascent state.

And here let me mention a little anecdote. After getting beaten badly by the new Israeli army, the Iraqi forces suspended all military action and remained camped in a safe area. When appeals went to the commander of the Iraqi forces to come to the rescue of Palestinian forces battling the Jewish forces, the Iraqi commander issued what has become part of the Arabic military lore of the 1948 war: ماكو اوامر [no orders/mako orders]
Germany’s Culture Minister Admits Commission on Nazi-Looted Art ‘Not Living Up to Responsibilities’
Germany’s Minister of Culture Claudia Roth has promised that the government will implement changes to the German independent national advisory commission on Nazi-confiscated cultural property, admitting that its current framework is “inadequate.”

“We are not living up to our responsibilities. We want a more modern and stronger commission,” Roth said at an event last week marking the 20th anniversary of the panel’s founding, according to The Art Newspaper.

The commission, which includes 10 members, offers recommendations on claims related to Nazi-looted art that is in the possession of public institutions. Since its founding 20 years ago, it has issued only 23 recommendations on cases submitted by the heirs of those persecuted by the Nazis.

In a memorandum issued earlier this month, the panel called for an “urgent overhaul” including a new restitution law in Germany. The document also asked that victims of Nazi persecution and their heirs be able to initiate a case before the commission even if the opposing party does not agree to the proceedings — currently both sides must agree to an appeal for a case to move forward — and demanded that the commission’s recommendations be legally binding, not just advisory.

“The advisory commission should become a deciding commission,” Hans-Jürgen Papier, a former constitutional judge who leads the commission, said at last week’s event.
Amid Rising Antisemitism, English Soccer Powerhouse Chelsea Becomes Latest Club to Launch Jewish Fan Group
Chelsea Football Club has announced the creation of a new group for its Jewish fans, making it the third major soccer team in the United Kingdom to announce such a group for its supporters.

The move comes amid reports of surging antisemitism across the United Kingdom, where members of the Jewish academic community have been forced to conceal their identities on university campuses, according to a report issued earlier this year by the Parliamentary Task Force on Antisemitism in Higher Education.

However, Chelsea’s Jewish Supporters Group, set up and run by fans of the team, intends to “bring supporters together to celebrate Jewish culture and identity, and work closely with the club on initiatives and campaigns to help ensure Chelsea FC is a welcoming and inclusive environment for everyone,” the London-based club said on Friday on its official website.

Fans can already apply to join the group, which will hold its first official event to celebrate Hanukkah on Dec. 11 at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea’s home stadium. Fans of all backgrounds and faiths, as well as “key figures within the Jewish community,” are invited to join the celebration, the team said.

“As a life-long Chelsea fan, I have been impressed and proud of the work the club has done to combat antisemitism and discrimination,” said Stephen Nelken, founder of the Jewish Supporters Group. “The intention in founding this group is to celebrate Jewish identity, support the excellent work the club is doing, and encourage like-minded fans to come together to support Chelsea. We are looking forward to welcoming new members to the group and are hopeful we can provide a voice for Jewish fans all over the world.”

Chelsea, a powerhouse of the English Premier League, launched a “Say No to Antisemitism” campaign in 2018 — funded by former club owner and Jewish Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich — that was an extension of the Chelsea Foundation’s Building Bridges campaign.
Elbit wins $95m ‘suicide drone’ deal with unnamed European state
Israeli defense contractor Elbit Systems announced a $95 million contract on Monday to supply its SkyStriker “suicide drone” to an unspecified European country.

The Haifa-based company said the contract will see it supply several hundred of the drones over two years.

Elbit Systems’ SkyStriker LM is a fully autonomous unmanned aerial vehicle that can passively loiter in the sky until it locates a target and fires a warhead of up to 10 kilograms (22 pounds).

SkyStriker enables covert operations of up to two hours and has a range of 100 kilometers (62 miles).

Israeli defense exports by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems, Elbit Systems and Israel Aerospace Industries soared in 2022, a surge attributed to European countries boosting their defense budgets after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and Israel’s normalization of relations with the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Morocco.
30 companies to represent Israel at COP28 in UAE
At least 30 companies will represent Israel at the United Nations’ 28th Conference of the Parties (COP28) in the United Arab Emirates in November.

The conference, considered the premier global event addressing climate change, is expected to host more than 100 heads of state and 100,000 participants.

The companies that will represent Israel were chosen by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Environmental Protection, the Ministry of Innovation, Science and Technology, the Israel Innovation Authority and the Export Institute.

These 30 companies represent all aspects climate tech, including clean energy, water, agriculture, sustainable manufacturing, green construction, food technology, transportation, circular economy, waste management, environmental protection and carbon capture.

CEO of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Ronen Levy called the conference “the most important and significant global event to discuss ways to combat the climate crisis.”

He added that Israel’s delegation “will bring innovative solutions and breakthroughs to the international stage and will hold a series of high-level meetings to assist countries dealing with climate challenges such as wildfires, floods, water scarcity and heatwaves.”

CEO of the Israel Innovation Authority Dror Bin said: “We believe that by showcasing Israeli climate-tech innovations on the international stage, we can provide exposure for these pioneering companies and foster collaborations, inspire others, and leverage Israel’s leadership potential in the global climate arena. In recent years, climate tech has become one of the hottest sectors in Israeli high-tech, attracting a wave of entrepreneurs, investors, and corporations aiming to contribute to the fight against climate change.“
Israeli startup wins healthcare tech challenge to help US hospitals cut costs
Israeli startup CatAI, which has developed a smartphone-based health app to monitor patients’ medical conditions at home, was named the winner of a healthcare competition to help US hospitals cut costs.

The early-stage startup was selected among 106 local companies competing in the clinical capacity tech challenge, which showcased their tech solutions aimed at reducing administrative tasks for healthcare providers to effectively manage staffing, thereby cutting costs for hospitals and healthcare institutions.

The challenge was launched earlier this year by Tel Aviv-based Start-Up Nation Central, which connects international businesses and government leaders with Israeli technology and facilitates access to the country’s startup ecosystem, together with Sheba Medical Center’s innovation arm ARC Innovation and Baptist Health Innovations. The latter is part of South Florida-based Baptist Health, the largest healthcare organization in the region, operating 12 hospitals and 200 outpatient centers, urgent care facilities and physician practices.

Founded in late 2021 by CEO Avner Rouach, surgeon and emergency medicine specialist Dr. Shlomi Israelit; CTO Avi Motova, and COO Ofer Bar, CatAI recognized healthcare providers’ need for dependable remote home patient health monitoring to help reduce rehospitalization and hospital overcrowding and thereby lower costs.

As the global population ages, the number of patients, and specifically elderly patients, requiring healthcare monitoring continues to rise, further increasing the burden on hospitals and the healthcare system.

Netflix buys rights to Israeli cop drama series
Netflix recently purchased the rights to the Israeli cop drama “Border Police,” which will join the streaming giant’s growing catalog of Israel-made content.

The US streaming company previously bought the rights to several other Israeli TV shows, including “The Beauty Queen of Jerusalem” and the smash-hit “Fauda,” which at some point made it to top viewing spots on Netflix throughout the Arab and Muslim world.

The new, eight-part series follows the story of Avi, a young man from Tel Aviv who joins Israel’s Border Police to settle scores with Arabs from Jaffa, with whom he previously had a conflict. But his problematic past is threatening to undermine his new career.

The show was created by film director Meni Yaesh and stars Ben Sultan as the main character, Avi. The series also stars Israeli pop star Shlomi Shabbat, Shalom Mikhalashvili, Noa Astangelov, Idan Elieli, Haim Zenati, Morris Cohen, Louis Ali, Meir Tamam, Gal Zehavi, Tikva Gideon, Maya Zefir and Assaf Mor.

“Border Police” is set to be available for streaming in Israel and across Netflix’s most major markets, including United States, France, Canada, Argentina, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, the United Kingdom, Poland, Romania, Czech Republic, Hungary, Spain, Portugal, The Netherlands, Belgium, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Greece and Italy.

In addition, Germany’s public-service television broadcaster, Zweites Deutsches Fernsehen (ZDF), also purchased the rights to the show. The series is expected to be available on ZDF’s streaming platform with German translation.
Aid groups find sadness and solidarity in earthquake-torn Morocco
Beauty. Chaos.

Those are the words volunteer medic Gadi Ben Meir thinks of first to describe the Moroccan villages where he and other Jewish and Muslim Israelis from Rescuers Without Borders tended people hurt or displaced by the September 8 earthquake that killed more than 2,900 and injured 5,530.

“It’s very pastoral there in the Atlas Mountains,” says Ben Meir. “In this area of very beautiful nature, roads were filled with fallen rocks and villages were totally destroyed. It was chaotic. People were sad and worried.”

His team, which flew out the night of September 9 and returned September 14 when they were relieved by another delegation, helped hundreds of people.

Ben Meir remembers meeting someone who lost 30 members of his family, a man who lost his wife, a woman who lost her husband, and a young girl rescued from the rubble, among many others.

Working in a tent 12 to 15 hours each day, often until midnight, they treated fractured and sprained limbs and other injuries. Seeing a lack of water, medicines and blankets, they purchased these items in less affected parts of Morocco to bring to those who’d lost everything.

“It was very sad,” says Ben Meir, the son of a Moroccan Israeli.

“On the other hand, you see amazing solidarity in these times. There were volunteers from all over Morocco and many from France, and Moroccans who live abroad came to help. It gives you a lot of faith in humanity.”

Rescuers Without Borders is one of several Israeli groups that flew delegations to Morocco even though the North African country did not formally accept official Israeli offers of aid.

According to the Society for International Development-Israel (SID-Israel), an umbrella organization for Israel action in development and humanitarian assistance, several Israeli groups are assisting post-earthquake Morocco.

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This blog may be a labor of love for me, but it takes a lot of effort, time and money. For over 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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