Monday, January 15, 2024

01/15 Links Pt2: John Podhoretz: They’re Coming After Us; Hamas sacrifices Gaza children, and UNRWA is complicit; NYTs to Jews: Forget thy right hand

From Ian:

John Podhoretz: They’re Coming After Us
For those deeply bound up with the condition of the Jewish state—Zionists whose commitment to the cause has made them hyperaware of the risks and opportunities in Eretz Yisrael, and those whose Israeli family members give them a personal stake in it—October 7 was also a trauma, though perhaps not entirely unprecedented. To feel the individual instability I just described really requires being an Israeli in Israel right now. For the rest of us, the combination of terror, war, hostages, and slaughter evoked feelings not experienced in klal Yisrael, the worldwide Jewish community, since the 1970s.

In four years’ time, recall, Israeli athletes were taken hostage and massacred at the 1972 Munich Olympics. The Yom Kippur War of 1973 shattered the triumphalist spirit that had prevailed since the 1967 Six-Day War. By 1974, the Soviet Union had made it clear it would keep Jews hungry to emigrate to Israel imprisoned inside Soviet borders. The United Nations declared that Zionism was racism in a notorious 1975 resolution. A planeful of Jews was hijacked to Entebbe in July 1976.

The idea that Israel, Israelis, and would-be Israelis have become targets of a new kind of evil took depressing, even debilitating, root. The staggering rescue of those Entebbe hostages helped calm the overwhelmingly anxious atmosphere that prevailed at the time among world Jewry—and was followed the next year by the stunning journey to Jerusalem by Egypt’s dictator Anwar el-Sadat and by the Camp David peace treaty between Israel and Egypt in 1979. The crisis facing Israel seemed to be over, and the depression lifted.

That was nearly a half-century ago. In the decades since, Israel has continued to be a source of unity for American Jews and Jews worldwide, the efforts of the New York Times to convince us otherwise notwithstanding. The data are absolutely clear. American Jews have supported Israel, consistently and in vast numbers—though in broad-brush terms, and there’s no question the fractiousness of the Diaspora community regarding Israel’s internal politics and behavior is often deeply unpleasant and divisive.

For every 10 Jews in the Diaspora, there have been 12 opinions about Israel’s political and social situation. Truth to tell, what we thought hasn’t really mattered all that much, no matter how hard we tried to believe it did. Here at home, we had our own problems anyway, and they weren’t that we were under threat or potential threat from outside forces. Our problem was, as the rueful joke had it, that once-hostile Gentiles didn’t want to kill us, they wanted to marry us. We weren’t at risk of disappearing due to violence; we were at risk of melting away into the great American melting pot.

Consider this astounding fact. After the lynching of the Atlanta businessman Leo Frank in 1915 at the hands of a mob that believed he had raped a worker in his factory, it would be another 52 years until a Jew in America was publicly murdered for being a Jew. That happened in 1977 in St. Louis, when a neo-Nazi shot a few men at random outside a synagogue. It would then be another 41 years before the massacre at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh in 2018. In the intervening four decades, you could count on one hand the number of anti-Semitic killings in the United States. The fact that there were any such killings is awful, of course, but the point stands: American Jews of my age and younger simply did not feel themselves to be at any specific physical risk for being Jewish.

That began to change after the Tree of Life killing spree. Hate crimes in general against Jews began to spiral in number—including two subsequent synagogue attacks in California and Texas. YouTube kept displaying short videos of visible members of the tribe (those with black hats, beards, fringed garments) being randomly assaulted from behind on the streets of Brooklyn and elsewhere in so called knock-out attacks. A kosher grocery store was shot up in New Jersey. The home of a haredi Jew in Monsey, New York, was invaded by a man with a machete. Though polls still demonstrated that the United States remained the most philo-Semitic nation the world has ever known, actual violence against Jews for being Jews was bubbling to the surface after remaining largely still over the previous century.
Defamation case against antisemitic slander only the beginning
On July 10, 2020, a statement of claim for defamation was issued against Kimberley Hawkins, owner and “directing mind” of now-closed Toronto Bloor St. eatery, Foodbenders. The plaintiff, Shai DeLuca, a Canadian with Israeli citizenship, is a designer and longtime contributor to CTV’s lifestyle show, Cityline. He’s also a gay Zionist who served with the IDF as a combat engineer.

Hawkins is an ardently progressive, anti-Zionist activist. She mounted a gigantic “I (heart) Gaza” sign in Foodbenders’ window; her social media account warned “Zionists” (taken by many to mean Jews) away from her business. In short, you couldn’t ask for any antagonists more passionately divided in their beliefs about Israel or more committed to defending their corner to the bitter end.

The suit was triggered by offensive statements featuring DeLuca’s name on Foodbenders’ official Instagram account; a gravely problematic one read: “(DeLuca) is an IDF SOLDIER (aka terrorist) yet he’s using the BLM movement for likes. How can you sit here and post about BLM when you have your sniper rifle aimed at Palestinian children.”

DeLuca was represented by David Elmaleh and David Rosenberg of Re-LAW LLP. They partnered with The Lawfare Project, which “provides pro bono legal services to protect the civil and human rights of the Jewish people worldwide.” Hawkins’ lawyer was pro-Palestinian activist Stephen Ellis, who also represents controversial Ontario MPP Sara Jama, who was kicked out of the provincial NDP caucus for antisemitic comments on social media.

On Dec 22, a Superior Court judgment was released, finding DeLuca had been defamed in a series of “abhorrent” antisemitic Instagram posts by Hawkins, and was entitled to $85,000 in damages, which included $10,000 in punitive damages to indicate the court’s “outrage” over Hawkins’ conduct. The judge found Hawkins “acted with malice,” was “irresponsible” and had hoped to end DeLuca’s career at Cityline. (Cityline stood by DeLuca. Ironically, Covid and public opprobrium shut Foodbenders down.)

Justice Gina Papageorgiou castigated Hawkins for never apologizing during three years of the suit’s progress. “Despite the many cases referred to me involving allegations like the ones here, the Defendants in this case were not deterred,” the judge wrote. “These kinds of statements not only affect people’s reputations, but they also contribute to prejudice, antisemitism and intolerance and have the potential to incite violence.”
Q & A, Hosted by Jay Nordlinger: The Professor-Ambassador Who Combats the Antisemites
Hosted by Jay Nordlinger
Deborah Lipstadt is a well-known scholar of modern Jewish history, antisemitism, and Holocaust denial. She has written many books. In the 1990s, she was involved in a famous trial against David Irving, the notorious English Holocaust-denier. (She won.) The case was depicted in a 2016 movie, “Denial,” in which Prof. Lipstadt was portrayed by Rachel Weisz. Today, Prof. Lipstadt works in the State Department: as the U.S. special envoy for monitoring and combating antisemitism. She has a lot to say, as you can imagine—very important things to say.

Hamas sacrifices Gaza children, and UNRWA is complicit
The Israel-Hamas war has revealed many instances of Hamas’ misconduct toward Gaza’s children. On several occasions during its ground operation in Gaza, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) has found Hamas’ military equipment hidden in schools, entrance hatches to Hamas tunnels under baby cribs, and rocket launchers placed in areas that children frequent. Various reports have also been published addressing the anti-Israel and antisemitic indoctrination and hate taught to Gaza’s children in their education system.

The UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), the United Nations agency for Palestinian refugees, oversees a big part of Gaza’s education system, and its teaching curriculum and the behavior of its staff since Oct. 7 have shown that incitement against Jews and Israel is a large part of their activities.

UN Watch, a Geneva-based organization that monitors the UN, published a report on Wednesday exposing how Hamas’ Oct. 7 atrocities were extensively celebrated in a 3000-member Telegram group composed of UNRWA’s staff. In November, an Israeli organization called IMPACT-SE also published an extensive report detailing the connection between education received in UNRWA schools in the Gaza Strip and the Oct. 7 massacres carried out by Hamas.

Dina Rovner, Legal Advisor at UN Watch, told The Media Line that this is a long-standing issue. She explained that since 2015, UN Watch has exposed more than 150 UNRWA staff Facebook pages that incite antisemitism and jihadi terrorism. “We have always maintained that the Facebook posts are just a symptom of a much more systemic problem—the fact that UNRWA hires antisemitic and terror-supporting staff in the first place,” said Rovner.

“These are not just a few bad apples as UNRWA likes to claim,” she continued, noting that the Telegram group “shows that when UNRWA teachers think nobody is watching them, they openly promote Hamas terrorism, glorify the terrorists as ‘martyrs’ and ‘heroes,’ and believe this is a wonderful path for Palestinian children to follow,” she added.

PodCast: The Challenge of Covering the Most Important Story on Earth (with Matti Friedman)
Journalist Matti Friedman worked for the Jerusalem Bureau of the Associated Press from 2006 to 2011. Looking back at that experience, Friedman argues that little has changed in the journalism landscape. Listen as Friedman discusses with EconTalk host Russ Roberts the media's obsession with Israel and how and why the media often sidelines facts in service of ideology, and the challenge of objective reporting in wartime.
Israel's "People's Army" at War
Since the Oct. 7 Hamas terrorist attack on Israel, a parade of U.S. defense officials have offered advice - largely unsolicited - about how Israel should conduct its offensive in Gaza, based on the lessons the U.S. learned from its wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

There are many reasons why Israel has so far chosen to ignore these recommendations. For starters, Iraq and Afghanistan were much larger and half a world away; Gaza is far smaller, more compact, and right next door to Israel. Then there is the fact that the U.S. lost the Afghanistan War and produced a muddled outcome in Iraq.

Yet there is another important factor at play. The Israel Defense Forces' relationship with society, cultural predilections, and norms of behavior are unique. Fewer than 1% of Americans serve on active duty and all do so by choice. The IDF is at its core a draft military, designed to be what Israel's founding prime minister, David Ben-Gurion, called a "people's army," both a reflection of society and the glue that binds the people together.

On Oct. 7, the IDF failed not only to protect the Israeli public but it failed to protect its own: At least 274 Israeli soldiers, plus dozens of local security officials, were killed that day.

Current and recently retired IDF officers often told me of the need to "restore the trust" in the IDF, and these concerns color how the officers are approaching the war in Gaza. For the military and its leaders charged with executing this war, the fight is deeply personal.

Israel views its war as an existential, society-wide struggle. With rockets still falling on Tel Aviv and Jerusalem; active fighting in Gaza, Lebanon, the Red Sea, and beyond; and surging global anti-Israel sentiment, the IDF sees itself fighting on all fronts.

Yisrael Medad: Did Israel 'Emerge' in 'Ancient Palestine'?
In a review of Emanuel Pfoh's "The Emergence of Israel in Ancient Palestine: Historical and Anthropological Perspectives" by Jeremy Hutton you can find this theory gaining a grip on the academic discourse - and soon to be mass discourse: increasingly vocal contingent has challenged the critical theory (/theories) of historiography employed by traditional historical-critical approaches to the biblical text...Emanuel Pfoh steps into the gap and offers his own terms for peace with this book...itself is a methodologically and theoretically grounded study of how one might begin to write about “the emergence of Israel in ancient Palestine.”

...The author marshals critical historiographic theory, state formation theory, and other anthropological models in an attempt to deal “specifically with Israel’s origins and the question of statehood in Palestine”. Throughout this introduction Pfoh positions himself as a proponent of “alternative historical explanations of what happened in Iron Age I Palestine in regard to ‘Israel’ ” (emphasis added). This effort comes as nothing surprising in the field of “biblical historiography” (construed loosely as the total combined subsets of biblical scholars, historians, archaeologists, Egyptologists, and Assyriologists who concern themselves with the reconstruction of the history of an ethnic group in the Southern Levant known as “Israel”)...he seeks “to assess the changing historical nature of the entity called ‘Israel’ as a product of contemporary history-writing” through both a review of the various proposals for understanding Israel’s emergence in Palestine (conquest, pastoral infiltration, etc.) and a sharpening of the “minimalist” critique of traditional biblical historiography....of Israel, Pfoh attempts to justify the critical historians’ foundational premise that “we cannot speak of Israel in history without firm evidence, and we cannot base our image of historical Israel on the biblical Israel that dwells in the Old Testament”...

...we have little or no access into the Bible’s meaningfulness within the original social context of its production. Because the historical narratives’ “intention is not historical,” “one cannot deem [them] historiographic” either...
How Hamas radicalised Israel’s liberals
During my visit to Israel last week, one thing most people agree on is that the war must go on until Hamas is completely destroyed. Across the board, Israel has become a country with a precise sense of the urgency of war: unstinting armed combat against a clear and intolerable enemy. Attacking a music festival was an efficient way to turn a generation of youngsters into hawks.

The people who lived in the kibbutzim one mile from Gaza used to work for peace with their neighbors. I was told by former residents they used to donate money to funds for Gazans. But when the same people came to butcher them and blow up their homes with rocket propelled grenades, laughing all the while, the old peacenikkery was revealed for the hideous illusion it was.

At the Sourasky Medical Center in Tel Aviv, I met a young man, 24, who, on trying to escape from the festival, had taken four bullets in his left arm and three in his right. I asked him if his politics had changed since Oct. 7. He said, "For my friends and me, the situation is now clear. Hamas must be erased. Erased. Now."

One major theme in Israeli discourse post-Oct. 7 is the certainty that Hamas, and its brethren in other jihadi groups, are coming for us next. The question is what will it take before recognizing who our enemies are.
Blinken's chutzpah: Israel should respond to the preaching of a serial bungler
The silence of the lambs
The Israeli resistance to the pressures was weak. Except for the IDF spokesman, who posted a video with a strong message about Israel's huge humanitarian actions, senior Israelis bowed their heads. They could have said: "We are fighting for our lives here, and if you are allies, you must support us morally and publicly as well." They could have added: "We still have 130 captives people inside Gaza, we will add a truck for everyone that gets released," or "The aid coming in is going to Hamas, prevents the war goals from being achieved and teaches the population that the organization is still the ruler in Gaza.By exerting these pressures you preventing us from winning." They should have responded with, "How come you rely on data from the UN, which is a biased organization and which has been taken over by Hamas?!" They were obliged to ask "What did you bring from the UAE, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia where you visited? Will they demilitarize Gaza? Will they make sure they stop firing missiles at us from there?!"

Instead of standing stall, the Israeli leadership agreed, for some reason, that a team on behalf of the UN, yes the UN, would determine what conditions were necessary to meet before Gaza residents returned to their homes in the northern strip. Willingness was also expressed to increase to 400(!) the number of aid trucks entering daily. Netanyahu also committed on his own that there would be no occupation and no population displacement – two steps we may end up needing. This created a situation where Netanyahu once again lied to the world.

Indeed, there were additional demands that Blinken raised and were rejected outright. Netanyahu, through Herzog and Gantz, made it clear to him that both in Gaza and Lebanon Israel will stand by the decisions it has taken to remove the threats. There were certainly uncomfortable moments for him at the Kiryah. And yet, someone should have set a red line for him – which did not happen.

There were those in Jerusalem last week who recalled Kissinger's shuttle diplomacy, which pushed Israel into a corner after the Yom Kippur War. Also in this regard, the similarities between that difficult war and our times are very similar. Only Kissinger was a great statesman and a smart Jew. He broke the Communist bloc by splitting between Russia and China and brought Egypt over to the Western bloc, and world history is full of his witty sayings.

Jewish history, on the other hand, sees Kissinger as a controversial figure, because in the difficult moments of that war, he seemed to be gambling with our fate. And that, unfortunately, is the only point of resemblance between him and the current Jewish Secretary of State, Antony Blinken.
National Post Editorial: Hamas Alone Bears Responsibility for the War
As the Israel-Hamas war drags on, the rhetoric from anti-Israel voices in Canada is becoming uglier and uglier. They put the blame for the fighting in the wrong place, blinded as they are by hatred for the Jewish state. Too many want to give terrorists a pass, but responsibility for the war lies solely with Hamas.

It can be tempting for Canadian officials to diffuse blame across both sides and call for a ceasefire - the wartime equivalent of a teacher giving a time-out to both the bully and the bullied for fear of appearing unfair. Yet Hamas caused the carnage of Oct. 7, and it continues to be the reason for the destruction today.

According to November polling by Angus Reid, 75% of Canadians believe that Hamas is a terrorist group, and 78% believe Israel has a right to exist and defend itself. It is a loud minority that believes the opposite.
Jeff Jacoby:CAIR, a self-described champion of civil rights, lets the mask slip — again
n 1994, the same year that Awad cofounded CAIR, he candidly told a Florida audience that he was “in support of the Hamas movement more than the PLO.” According to the Capital Research Center, CAIR opened its office in Washington, D.C., with a grant from the Holy Land Foundation, a charity listed by the Treasury Department in 2001 as a “Specially Designated Terrorist” group. In 2008, five former leaders of the foundation were convicted of funneling more than $12 million to Hamas. A year later, the Obama Justice Department severed its ties with CAIR, noting that “the evidence at trial [had] linked CAIR leaders to Hamas . . . and CAIR was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the case.” FBI officials were directed to “significantly restrict” any “non-investigative interactions with CAIR” and to steer clear of including CAIR in community engagement or public relations activities.

Daniel Pipes, the president of the Middle East Forum, noted in 2014 that at least seven former board members or staff at CAIR were “arrested, denied entry to the US, or were indicted on or pled guilty to or were convicted of terrorist charges.” In 2014, the United Arab Emirates included CAIR on a list of more than 83 terrorist organizations, along with Al-Qaeda, ISIS, Boko Haram, and the Taliban.

For all that, CAIR insists that it is “principled and consistent” in opposing antisemitism. It regularly issues press releases condemning acts of antisemitic vandalism or violence in the United States. But such statements are best regarded as protective coloration intended to camouflage CAIR’s mission of encouraging hostility to Israel and Israel’s supporters in the United States.

Again and again, CAIR officials have let the mask slip.

Last February, for example, the head of CAIR’s Los Angeles branch, Hussam Ayloush, declared that American police forces are “becoming more brutal, more racist, and more like an occupation army” because they are “being trained by Israel.” In December 2021, the head of CAIR’s San Francisco chapter exhorted supporters to oppose not only “vehement fascists” but “the polite Zionists, too,” labeling as “enemies” the Anti-Defamation League, Jewish federations, “the Zionist synagogues,” and Hillel chapters on college campuses. In October, CAIR’s Maryland director, Zainab Chaudry, sneered at the outrage over Hamas’s killing of “40 fake Israeli babies.”

Whatever else CAIR is, it is no true champion of civil rights and interfaith harmony and never has been. In 2021, the Simon Wiesenthal Center put CAIR on its Global Antisemitism Top Ten list, charging it with “unleashing pollution of antisemitism into America’s mainstream.” Thirty years after CAIR was launched by a cofounder who openly acknowledged being in support of Hamas, it remains a front for Islamist extremism and anti-Zionist bigotry. To treat it as a legitimate “civil rights organization” that speaks for US Muslims is to set back the causes of civil rights and Muslims alike.

Yisrael Medad: Claims of rising Israeli settler violence against Palestinians are false
Did you know that “settler violence” has its own Wikipedia entry? It is defined as Arabs being “the target of violence by Israeli settlers and their supporters, predominantly in the West Bank.” There is, however, another violence, that of linguistic violence, targeting Jews repatriated in their reconstituted historic national homeland.

The term was popularized following the 1989 publication of David Weisburd’s Jewish Settler Violence: Deviance as Social Reaction. In his study, he focused on concerns with crimes of “altruistic” law violations. By that he meant violating the rules and laws of a society in the name of “higher” laws and in response to another group’s violence.

That Wikipedia entry, some 6000 words long at present, contains little indication that the messaging which is driving the “settler violence” campaign is incorrect. It also elides the sources for the data. The numbers come from various anti-settlement NGOs like B’tselem, Peace Now, and Yesh Din or from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in the Occupied Palestinian territory (OCHA), which is supplied by Palestinian Authority operatives. They are not objective in the least. Overall, the media and diplomatic campaign is predicated on weak data.

On December 29, last month, Stéphane Dujarric, spokesman for the UN Secretary-General, did note concern both for “settler violence and attacks on Israelis by Palestinians” as “extremely alarming.” That, however, pales to the US State Department spokesman Matthew Miller asserting, as he did on December 19, that “Israel… need to do more to police and prevent extremist settler violence in the West Bank” as well as the additional announced imposition of visa restrictions on “violent Jewish extremists.”

The issue has become not only a media trope but a very blunt weapon wielded even by US President Joe Biden among others to browbeat and psychologically force Israel to kowtow to their policies.
Israel Changed the Rules of the Game in Syria
While the U.S. has at last taken on Iran’s proxy in Yemen, Iran’s proxy in Lebanon continues to attack the Jewish state: yesterday, Hizballah fired an antitank missile at a house, killing a seventy-six-year-old civilian and her son. The same day, the IDF thwarted an attempted cross-border raid from Lebanon. Jerusalem, meanwhile, is continuing its efforts to undermine Tehran’s terror network in Syria, which have been going on for more than a decade.

This campaign has so far operated according to unwritten “rules of the game,” whereby both sides respect certain red lines, keeping retaliation from spinning out of control. Since October 7, Israel has gotten bolder, according to the Tal Avraham and Carmit Valensi, “attacking weapons transfers and strategic targets more frequently and in a deadlier manner,” and sometimes breaking the rules:

The most powerful operation attributed to Israel so far took place on December 25, when Sayyed Razi Mousavi, a senior commander in the Iranian Revolutionary Guards in Damascus who was entrusted with the transfer of weapons from Iran to Syria and Lebanon, was killed. . . . Attacking him means attacking Iran, which so far has not paid the price for operating its agents against Israel.

So far, except for a few UAV launches attributed to pro-Iranian militias in Syria or Iraq, the attacks attributed to Israel in Syria have not been met with significant responses by the [Iran-led] axis. The considerations of Syria’s President Assad are clear—he is not interested in dragging Syria into a widescale war, which could also endanger his position. So far the Iranian leadership and Hizballah have accepted this and refrained from responding from his territory.

In other words, Jerusalem’s boldness has paid off.
Hamas says Germany defends Israel at ICJ due to ‘so-called Holocaust’
Mohammad Nazzal, a member of the Hamas political bureau, declared Friday on the Qatar-owned Al-Jazeera network that Germany is defending Israel at the International Court of Justice because of the “so-called Holocaust.”

Nazzal said that Germany is being strong-armed into intervening on Israel’s behalf at the UN court in The Hague against South Africa’s complaint claiming the Jewish state is committing genocide in Gaza.

The Hamas terrorist said that Germany is paying an “unacceptable price” for its complex about the Shoah. He added that this is “unparalleled extortion.” After Nazzal denied the first Holocaust, he said Jews today are perpetrating a “new holocaust” against the Palestinian people.

The Washington, DC-based Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) first located and translated Nazzal’s interview.

Germany’s government announced on Friday that it will intervene on behalf of Israel at the UN's top court. The spokesman for the German government, Steffen Hebestreit, wrote on X that “The federal government firmly rejects the accusation of genocide made against Israel. It has no basis whatsoever.”Hebestreit said Germany “intends to intervene as a third party in the main hearing.”

Al-Jazeera has published reports on its Arabic and English language outlets denying the Holocaust.

How Princeton is Whitewashing the Shameful Record of Ken Roth
In tracing the many sources for the explosion of hate directed at Israel, Zionists and Jews, Human Rights Watch (HRW) stands out. Although founded in the 1970s by Robert Bernstein as a bastion of morality in support of the post-Holocaust Universal Declaration of Human Rights, by the beginning of the 21st century the leaders of the organization had betrayed these principles. HRW became a central force in weaponizing human rights for antisemitism, and is continuing to promote this agenda in the wake of the October 7 massacre and the war in Gaza that it triggered.

The individual most responsible for this record is Ken Roth, Executive Director from 1993 to 2022. He controlled HRW’s agenda, particularly the obsessive singling-out of Israel for demonization, regardless of borders or policies. Under his guidance, HRW hired a number of individuals with clear records of antisemitism, and devoted a major part of its $100 million annual budget (as of 2022) to the unique and blatant vilification of the Jewish State. Roth and HRW championed the slogans – war crimes, apartheid, genocide, deliberate killing of children, etc. – displayed on signs and chanted by the mobs that today block access to airports, bridges and tunnels, and set fire to Jewish-owned businesses in North American cities.

After he retired from HRW in 2022, Roth began to work hard to rewrite this legacy. He attempted to remake himself into an academic expert, notwithstanding a lifetime devoted to advocacy and slogans, in contrast to serious peer-reviewed research. After receiving a strong rejection by the Dean of Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, Roth and his acolytes launched a wide media manipulation campaign and eventually succeeded in forcing the Dean to capitulate. It was a pyrrhic victory, as the one-year fellowship was soon over. For the following year, Roth engineered a special title as “Thakore Family Global Justice and Human Rights Visiting Fellow” at the University of Pennsylvania.

Princeton University is Roth’s current stop in this redemption parade, where he has jumped from a lowly fellow to the status of “visiting professor” (again, with no academic credentials) in public and international affairs. A predictably fawning profile of Roth in the Princeton Alumni Weekly whitewashes his 29-year record as head of HRW, in which he led the organization and the entire human rights movement to irrelevance and worse. The title of the profile, “Kenneth Roth Champions Universal Human Rights,” is itself a mockery – Roth, perhaps more than any other individual, is responsible for erasing the universality of these principles. The profile opens by repeating Roth’s standard exploitation of the Holocaust as a shield against criticism, as if the stories of “his father fleeing Nazi-controlled Frankfurt, Germany” somehow justify his perversion of morality and the legacy of the victims to demonize Israel.
No Brotherly Love for Israel at This Elite School
The fact that Ivy League administrators have allowed anti-Israel extremism to infest their campuses has been widely condemned. There have also been news reports of antisemitic violence committed by pro-Hamas radicals at college campuses, and even in public schools. However, at the same time, very little information is being revealed about the lies being told about Israel at America’s elite private primary and secondary schools.

A prime example of the types of issues Jewish students at private schools are facing would have to include the William Penn Charter School (PC) in Philadelphia. PC is not just any elite school. In many ways, it is the elite school. Founded in 1689, it is the world’s oldest Quaker school and the nation’s fifth-oldest elementary school. Despite being Quaker, it has a large Jewish student body.

From its very first communication three days after the Oct. 7 Hamas terrorist attacks on Israel to their school community, PC engaged in blatant obfuscation and both-sides-ism. “War is never justified” and moral equivalency messages received an immediate backlash and condemnation from many Jewish students and parents. The result was that the very next day, on Oct. 11, PC followed up their first, failed memo with an attempt to acknowledge their wrongheaded approach. “We are writing to acknowledge that the message we sent yesterday related to the terrorist attacks in Israel this weekend did not articulate Penn Charter’s position … we heard that our Jewish families feel unheard and unseen; we heard that our message failed to condemn evil and suggested a moral equivalency … Penn Charter unequivocally condemns all terrorism. The heinous acts committed by the terrorist group Hamas … are an outrage, and we are personally heartbroken … .” It was quickly apparent that the apology was simply an attempt to stifle criticism and not a sign that real care would be taken to call out anti-Zionism and terrorism for the evils that they are.

More than a month after the failed apology and lack of personal response from the administration to Jewish parents, Penn Charter’s administration realized that due to the rising tension on campus, it had to turn to outside assistance to help educate staff and students. And so it selected a highly partisan organization called Interfaith Philadelphia.

Interfaith has a history of employing radicals, as well as closely partnering with organizations with long anti-Israel records. One of its top staffers was previously a leader of the Philadelphia chapter of CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations). Critics of CAIR have long accused it of maintaining close ties to the Muslim Brotherhood. Another Interfaith Philadelphia staffer received her education at the Women’s Islamic Theological Seminary (Jami’at al-Zahra) in Qum, Iran.
Two University of Pennsylvania Students Were Arrested Over Anti-Semitic Incidents. The School Won't Say Whether They Faced Disciplinary Action.
In the weeks before and after Hamas's Oct. 7 attack on Israel, two University of Pennsylvania students were arrested in anti-Semitic incidents that shook the Philadelphia campus. One stormed into the Penn Hillel building, yelled "F—k the Jews," and destroyed furniture. Another stole an Israeli flag from an apartment near campus.

Both incidents generated media attention, and the school released a lengthy statement addressing the Hillel intrusion the day after it occurred. "We unequivocally condemn such hateful acts. They are an assault on our values and mission as an institution and have no place at Penn," then-university president Liz Magill said in a statement. "We are unwavering in our commitment to ensuring our Jewish community feels safe and supported on our campus."

What Penn will not say is what, if any, disciplinary action the students faced and whether they remain students at the Ivy League school. A spokesman for the University of Pennsylvania did not respond to a request for comment.

The incident at Penn Hillel occurred on Sept. 21, and the student was arrested by campus police. Penn has refused to identify the culprit behind the Penn Hillel incident, referring to the intruder in a statement as an "individual" who "was determined to be in crisis." The intruder is in fact a male student at Penn, a Penn Hillel spokesperson told the Washington Free Beacon. The school's Division of Public Safety, which oversees the campus police, told the Free Beacon that it could not disclose the name of the anti-Semitic intruder or comment on his enrollment status, because "no individual has been criminally charged."

The second incident occurred on Oct. 28, when 20-year-old student Tara Tarawneh allegedly stole an Israeli flag from a Campus Apartments house before speaking at an anti-Semitic rally in downtown Philadelphia, where she recounted feeling "so empowered and happy" as Hamas's assault on the Jewish state unfolded. Tarawneh was arrested on Nov. 4 for the theft.

Penn has also remained silent on Tarawneh's case. The school on Nov. 11 confirmed the Ivy League junior's arrest and status as a Penn student, but it has given no update on the matter since.

Campus sources, meanwhile, say Tarawneh has avoided disciplinary action. Tarawneh "remains a student at Penn and was back in class by Nov. 28," according to a December court filing, while the New York Post reported that she "was still attending class" as of Dec. 9.

Penn's silence on the two high-profile incidents raises questions about the school’s stated commitment to combating anti-Semitism and to holding the perpetrators accountable. It comes as the school grapples with a lawsuit and congressional investigation related to its handling of campus anti-Semitism, an issue that forced the mid-December resignation of Magill.
Window Dressing: Day After Congressional Letter Threatening Funding, Cornell Condemns Student Social Media Post That “Zionists Must Die”
Someone posted something on the internet. That person “allegedly” is a Cornell student. (It does appear to be a Cornell student, the post has been circulating widely after the all-campus email blast.)

Sure, the statement was offensive, but it’s no more offensive than the chants for “Intifada” and “From the River To The Sea” that are common on campus. If anything, saying “Zionists must die” is a more honest reflection of the sentiment of the anti-Israel activists on and off campus – that student said the quiet part out loud, and now may be punished. But we all know it’s what other students mean by the other slogans, so why did THIS social media post merit a presidential statement? Presidential statements are not that common.

The social media post was not a ‘true threat’ unlike the other Cornell student last fall who threatened in a popular chat room to shoot up the Kosher dining hall and slit people’s throats. (That person now is in federal custody.) The statement “Zionists must die” probably is protected under the First Amendment when done as a generalized social media post, but Cornell like many universities invokes the First Amendment selectively. Unlike the statement by a prominent Cornell professor about feeling “exhilarated” on October 7, made before a crowd that included students and was not far from campus, it’s not clear what connection to campus this social media post had that required university administration involvement.

The whole thing struck me as odd. While I obviously disagree with the sentiment in the social media post, I’m also uncomfortable with the Cornell administration serving as internet hall monitor, at least not for things that do not directly touch campus. So WHY the presidential statement and all-campus email?

Then the timing seemed to make sense.

CTV’s Antisemitic Blood Libel: Claims Israel Is Committing “Mass Murder Of Palestinian Children”
UPDATE: CTV News has now deleted the antisemitic blood libel it wrote accusing Israel of the mass murder of Palestinian children.

However, this unfounded and hateful remark cannot just be erased and forgotten. HonestReporting Canada is calling on CTV News to issue a public explanation and atonement in light of this outrageous accusation.

CTV News has published an antisemitic blood libel, plain and simple.

On January 13, CTV News claimed that Israel is committing “mass murder of Palestinian children”.

These are the words (and therefore the representative view) of one of Canada’s largest news networks.

CTV wrote these statements and appended them to an interview it published with Danny Glenwright, the President and CEO of Save The Children Canada, in a report entitled: “10,000 children killed in nearly 100 days of War”.

Of all the libels that have been foisted against Israel, none is perhaps more deplorable than claims that Israel is intentionally and with premeditation, committing mass murder of innocent Palestinian children.

You’d think it would go without saying that CTV would appreciate that Israel is doing everything in its part to avoid harming innocent Palestinians, especially children, while Hamas is doing everything in its part to harm innocent Israelis, children included.

But that’s apparently not how CTV sees things.
Tom Friedman's soft Jihad against Israel
Still Supporting the Palestinian Authority
Friedman subscribes to the bogus view that the Palestinian Authority (PA) is a secular government, overlooking the Islamist terrorist groups it controls (Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades and Tanzim, for instance) and the financial incentives it offers to terrorists through its so-called "pay-to-slay" program which rewards the families of terrorist killers (whom it calls martyrs) with generous pensions, including its announcement, on October 15, 2023, that it was extending its payment program to 50 Hamas terrorists who were captured by IDF forces on October 7.

He erroneously believes that there are substantial differences between Hamas and the PA/PLO, when the only real difference is that each believes it has the best plan for eliminating Israel.

Friedman told Vox News on October 16 that, "There is only one thing worse than Hamas controlling Gaza and that is no one controlling Gaza or Israel controlling Gaza." He continued, "I say to the Israelites [sic], before you go into it, show me the plan. Otherwise, be careful: Do not enter Gaza before you have a clear and precise idea of how you will get out."

His final column of the year asserts that Israel's "only exit from this mutually assured destruction is to bring in some transformed version of the Palestinian Authority – or a P.L.O.-appointed government of Palestinian technocrats – in partnership with moderate Arab states like Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia."

In Friedman's mind, Israel will always be responsible for Gaza.

Tearing Down the Israeli Government
Friedman suffers from a virulent case of Netanyahu Derangement Syndrome, perhaps equal to his case of Trump Derangement Syndrome. He often conflates the two, making for a two-in-one target. In a column titled "Is Trump Bibi's Chump?" on January 28, 2020, Friedman (as always making rhetorical demands of politicians) told his readers that "Trump needs to ask Netanyahu: 'Will you agree right now that the remaining land will be a Palestinian state if the Palestinians agree to demilitarization and recognize Israel as a Jewish state?'"

It's Time to Ignore Tom Friedman
Friedman's December 22 column, "It's Time for the U.S. to Give Israel Some Tough Love," is overflowing with his usual bad advice, such as the need for the U.S. "to tell Israel how to declare victory in Gaza and go home."

Few people are more devoted to the idea of a two-state solution than Thomas Friedman. He wants Israel to unilaterally withdraw from what he calls the "West Bank," but the lesson of October 7 is that Gaza was a de facto Palestinian Arab state, and it devoted all of its resources to attacking Israel. If Friedman gets his way, the "West Bank" will become another Gaza.

The October 7 Hamas massacre of Israeli civilians opened the eyes of many a Palestinian Arab sympathizer, awakening them to the horrors of their team. But not Thomas Friedman. The three-time Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times columnist still advises that a two-state solution is viable, still urges Israeli restraint, and still doesn't understand that he has never understood Hamas.

Here's better advice: it's time to stop listening to Tom Friedman, stop reading his column and his books, and stop taking his soft jihad against Israel seriously. For half a century, he has played the part of Middle East roving reporter, explaining every situation as though he were commander of all the moving parts and as though he alone knew the game plan. Enough.
‘New York Times’ to Jews: Forget thy right hand
Marc Tracy’s New York Times article on Jan. 14 refers to “left-wing” Jews and a “left-wing” Jewish publication, and a “far-right” Israeli government and its “extreme-right ministers.” The avian metaphors add up to the culture reporter to implications for human appendages as well.

“If I forget you, O’ Jerusalem,” states Psalm 137:5, “let me draw a blank on my right hand.”

The Times article headline has a different notion of the Jewish faith than does Jewish scripture. “Is Israel part of what it means to be Jewish?” the article asks, noting that “some progressive Jews” embrace “diasporism,” thus “reimagining their faith as one that blesses their lives in America and elsewhere.”

“The land of Israel is central to the religion, the foundational narrative of which is about returning from slavery to the Promised Land,” the article allows. “Over centuries of exile, Jews have pledged, ‘Next year in Jerusalem,’ and prayed facing that city.”

Since Oct. 7, “some Jews have been repelled by Israel’s military response, which has killed approximately 23,000, according to Gazan officials,” per the Times. (Hamas terrorists run the Gaza health ministry.)

“On Day 100, the NYT features a closely reported profile of the Wicked Son from the Passover Seder. ‘What does all this mean to you?'” wrote David Frum, an Atlantic staff writer and former speechwriter for former President George W. Bush.

“Oh look, the NYT has discovered more anti-Zionist Jews,” wrote John Podhoretz, editor-in-chief of Commentary magazine. “It’s their favorite thing, along with polyamorous moms and drag queens who love to entertain 3-year-olds.”
The Commentary Magazine Podcast: Writing Israel Out of Judaism?
Hosted by Abe Greenwald, Christine Rosen, John Podhoretz & Matthew Continetti
Today’s podcast takes up a jaw-dropping New York Times article that asks how important, really, is Israel to the religion of Judaism. Yes, you read that right. Also, the Iowa caucuses are upon us, and it looks like the Republican coronation might be commencing.

The Guardian Platforms Naomi Klein’s Latest Call For a Boycott of Israel
In an opinion piece for The Guardian, Canadian-Jewish public personality Naomi Klein advocates for the strengthening of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel.

According to Klein, Israel’s current war against Hamas in Gaza is further evidence of the Jewish state’s acting with “impunity” and it is only by widening the influence of the BDS movement that the international community can rein in what she perceives to be Israel’s wrongdoings.

However, to make her case, Klein relies on a whitewashing of the BDS movement, misrepresentations of Israel’s military activities, and false allegations of Israeli apartheid.

Naomi Klein’s Virtuous BDS Movement
Naomi Klein presents BDS as a Palestinian-led movement that seeks to isolate Israel until it “complies with international law and universal principle of human rights.”

For Klein and other proponents of BDS, the movement’s damaging boycotts of the Jewish state and international corporations that do business with it will ultimately force foreign governments to sanction Israel, similar to the campaign against Apartheid South Africa in the 1980s.

However, while Klein seeks to present BDS as this virtuous movement seeking only to bring Israel into lockstep with the international community, the reality is much more sinister.

Several BDS leaders have been unabashedly quoted as stating the ultimate end goal of the movement is the destruction of Israel as a Jewish state.

Omar Barghouti, a founding member of the BDS movement, who is presented in Klein’s piece as a moral voice against injustice, has been recorded in the past saying, “We oppose a Jewish state in any part of Palestine” and even going so far as to claim that Palestinians have a right to “resistance by any means, including armed resistance.”

Thus, it’s clear that it’s not trumped-up charges of Israeli violations of international law that BDS opposes. It’s Israel’s existence as a Jewish state that drives BDS’s international campaigns.

Klein also makes several misleading statements that serve to glorify the boycott movement.

For example, in touting the movement’s righteousness, she claims that BDS is “very clear that it is not calling for individual Israelis to be boycotted because they are Israeli…,” creating the impression that BDS is only focused on boycotting Israeli institutions.

However, a closer look at the movement’s boycott guidelines shows that the BDS National Committee allows for “common sense” boycotts of Israeli individuals that go beyond the scope of its boycott criteria. According to these guidelines, more or less any Israeli individual who has not actively denounced the Jewish state can be rightfully boycotted.

Similarly, Klein seeks to raise the image of the BDS movement by highlighting some of its latest “wins,” pointing to the termination of Puma sportswear’s sponsorship of the Israeli national soccer team, an “exodus of artists” from an Italian comics festival that was co-sponsored by the Israeli embassy, and the impact of a boycott against McDonald’s on the fast food giant’s revenue.

However, the fly in the ointment for these “wins” is that Puma announced its decision had nothing to do with BDS, the “exodus” from the Lucca comics festival was limited to eight artists and organizations (including Amnesty International), and the McDonald’s boycott mostly affected countries which have no relations with Israel.
One War and Two Visions
The BBC gives massive coverage to so-called diplomatic initiatives to bring about a ceasefire. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken's "shuttle diplomacy" between Washington and the Middle East is presented as a serious enterprise rather than a banal version of shadow-boxing.

[T]he Beeb wants only Israel to rein in its furies, never mentioning that Hamas, too, could help by stopping rocket attacks on Israeli civilian targets.

The IRGC cannot tell its audience that those heroes of the "Resistance" have been unable to protect the people they have under their rule for almost two decades. Thus, the IRGC offers no footage of "charred bodies of children" or heaps of rubble where once stood a Gazan village or town.

Grand Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi assures everyone that "martyrs" in Gaza have the good fortune of going straight to paradise.

IRGC Quds Force chief Major-General Ismail Qa'ani has put it succinctly: "We give our Arab brothers who join the Resistance Front everything they want, including arms and training. But we shall not fight on their behalf."

In other words, the glory of martyrdom is not for us, but for those we hire to die on our behalf.
Another non-transparent BBC report with a repeat contributor
In late December we documented the appearance on the BBC News website’s ‘Middle East’ page of an uncredited filmed report featuring a minor from the Gaza Strip who had previously appeared on the same BBC platform in May 2021.

That item featuring Nadin – or Nadeen – Abdullatif appeared on the ‘Middle East’ page between December 29th and December 31st 2023 and then later reappeared in the ‘Watch/Listen’ section of the same webpage on January 11th 2024, where it remains at the time of writing.

As noted here previously, in January 2022 Abdullatif appeared at a conference titled ‘Gaza Siege: An Ongoing Crime’. During her speech she claimed to be a member of one of that conference’s organising bodies – the ‘16th October media group’. On its website, that propaganda group lists Wafa Aludaini as “team manager”. Aludaini has a record of connections to Hamas-linked organisations.

NBC Report on Escalating West Bank Violence Conceals Palestinian Violence
Had NBC probed the possibility that secondary explosions due to the weapons cache, as opposed to “collective punishment,” were responsible for destroying three apartments? In any event, what’s clear is that Engel concealed the existence of the weapons cache and explosives lab from viewers.

He likewise expunged evidence of Palestinian violence in his account of the Oct. 19 Israeli military raid in Nur al-Shams, selectively reporting that Sarah Mahmeed
showed me the spot where she filmed her 16-year-old brother as he was shot by Israeli soldiers during another raid. Her cell phone video is difficult to watch. When her brother, on the left, looks around a corner, he’s shot dead. When her father tries to recover the body, he’s shot too. Seriously injured. He manages to limp back home. “Our blood is cheap for them. They’re killing us every day,” Sarah says. The Israeli military said its troops fired on terrorists during an operation in the area. At the time we attended the funeral for Palestinians who’ve just been killed during another Israeli operation.

Engel reports Taha Mahmeed‘s identity as a terrorist as an unverifiable he said/she said matter, with the sister and the Israeli military providing conflicting claims. But Hamas itself confirmed the Israel Defense Forces’ information, acknowledging that the younger Mahmeed was one of “its martyrs” killed “during confrontations” with the IDF. Hamas’ poster about Mahmeed (at left) states (translation by CAMERA Arabic):
To the masses of our mighty Palestinian people and the free people of our Arab and Islamic nation, Hamas – the Islamic Resistance Movement mourns its martyred hero Taha Mahameed who ascended [to heaven] at dawn of Thursday, 19.10.23 by the occupation’s fire in the Nur Shams refugee camp east of Tulkarm during the clashes of the Al-Aqsa Flood campaign.

NBC’s report gives no indication that Mahmeed belonged to Hamas, a designated terror organization which just that month had pulled off the most barbaric massacre targeting thousands, inflicting unparalleled torture and horrific rapes, in recent history.

In short, for a broadcast titled “Violence escalating in the West Bank,” NBC’s Richard Engel does a remarkable job concealing Palestinian violence in the West Bank.
Global National Insinuates Israeli Air Strike Hit Palestinian Ambulance Killing 4, Ignores Israel’s Denial Of Responsibility For Attack
HRC has previously taken Global National’s Europe Bureau Chief, Crystal Goomansingh, to task. On October 24, Goomansingh conducted an interview with Ghazi Hamed, a spokesperson for Hamas, who denied his terrorist group ever targeted Israeli civilians during its October 7 massacre in southern Israel, despite extensive evidence showing otherwise. Despite Hamas’ long record of inhumanity and grotesque murders, Goomansingh did not challenge a single claim made by Hamed.

Importantly, Israel does not target ambulances and it’s vital to note that, for the record, Palestinian terrorists have used ambulances to transport combatants and weapons.

In our view, Global’s January 10 report which insinuated that an Israeli air strike targeted an ambulance and killed four innocent civilians, without any supporting evidence and only a claim made by The Palestinian Red Crescent Society, this Global report was in material breach of its own journalistic principles and practices.

Global contends it’s “… primary directive is to report accurate, balanced, timely and comprehensive news and information in the public interest,” and that its journalists “remain professionally detached and fair, balanced and complete when reporting the news so as not to influence the outcome of events.”

In our view, Global National must broadcast a statement that prominently features Israel’s denial of responsibility for this attack which depicted the Israel Defense Forces’ as having targeted an ambulance, a protected vehicle in the law of armed conflict, killing four Palestinian innocents.

HonestReporting Canada has filed an official complaint with the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council (CBSC) calling for immediate corrective action and we encourage you to also file complaints with Global National.
The Observer Covers For Israeli Who Was Arrested For Allegedly Justifying Hamas Rapes
Just a week after criticizing the entire Israeli media for emphasizing Israel’s pain following the October 7 Hamas attack and not emphasizing enough the Palestinian suffering in the Gaza Strip, journalists Emma Graham-Harrison and Quique Kierszenbaum have followed up with another worryingly skewed article published in The Guardian’s sister newspaper, The Observer.

Headlined, “‘It is a time of witch hunts in Israel’: teacher held in solitary confinement for posting concern about Gaza deaths,” the piece focuses primarily on Meir Baruchin, who, readers are told in the subheading, was “fired and jailed for criticising the military” and claims that “many who agree with him are afraid to go public.”

The piece explains that the “grey-haired, softly spoken history and civics teacher” was placed in solitary confinement in a Jerusalem jail in early November after he was charged with intent to commit treason over what Graham-Harrison and Kierszenbaum describe vaguely as a “series of Facebook posts he’d made, mourning the civilians killed in Gaza, criticising the Israeli military, and warning against wars of revenge.”

Indeed, just one message that Baruchin posted online on October 8 — as the scale of the unprovoked massacre of Israeli civilians was clear — is reprinted in the article:
‘Horrific images are pouring in from Gaza. Entire families were wiped out. I don’t usually upload pictures like this, but look what we do in revenge,’ said a message on 8 October, below a picture of the family of Abu Daqqa, killed in one of the first airstrikes on Gaza. ‘Anyone who thinks this is justified because of what happened yesterday, should unfriend themselves. I ask everyone else to do everything possible to stop this madness. Stop it now. Not later, Now!!!'”

What readers are not told, however, is about the other comments Baruchin allegedly posted online that dark day in October.

Among other things, Baruchin is said to have justified Hamas terrorists raping Israeli women and also accused the IDF of perpetrating sexual attacks against Palestinian women ever since the State of Israel was established.

Had Graham-Harrison and Kierszenbaum reprinted the alleged posts, the fact that Baruchin was initially arrested for incitement would have at least made some sense.

It is later reported that — despite what’s stated in the headline — Baruchin is technically no longer working as a teacher after making what they call “similar criticism at a less volatile time” that led to his sacking from a school in Rishon LeZion three years ago.
Bloomberg Deletes Incendiary ‘Israel Genocide’ Headline

IDF detains two sisters of killed Hamas deputy Arouri for inciting to terror
Troops operating in the West Bank arrested two sisters of Hamas deputy leader Saleh al-Arouri, who was assassinated, allegedly by Israel, in Lebanon earlier this month, the Israel Defense Forces said Sunday morning.

Dalal, 52, and Fatima, 47, al-Arouri were detained in separate raids in ‘Arura, al-Arouri’s hometown, and al-Bireh, both near Ramallah.

They were arrested for “inciting terror against the State of Israel,” the IDF said without elaborating.
A reminder: This is how Hamas took over after Israel left Gaza completely in 2005

PMW: Fatah and Hamas – identical child Martyrdom promotion
Speaking through the mouth of a young boy from the Gaza Strip, Hamas sent this message to Palestinians:

Boy: “We are the generation of the future. We’ll wave the flags of Jihad in Palestine and liberate it. We stand firm on our land and remain in the Bureij refugee camp despite the Israeli occupation’s threats (i.e., Israeli warnings to evacuate combat zones in Gaza). We’ll not leave our land, we’re remaining in our homes… We stand firm on our land, and if the occupation (i.e., Israel) approaches us, we’ll resist. We want to resist, even if they shoot us. We want to die as Martyrs. I’m not afraid, I want to die as a Martyr, that’s fine. We salute the resistance in Palestine.”

[“The Palestinian Center for Information” (Hamas), X (Twitter) account, Dec. 26, 2023]

The PA message is not different, as Palestinian Media Watch has exposed for decades. In this recent PA TV broadcast, two fathers express appreciation and happiness with their sons’ Martyrdom-deaths. One even says that more will follow, because when one dies as a Martyr, “10 grow [in his place]”:
Seeking Cash, Hamas Turns to Allies Experienced in "Financial Jihad"
Three days after the Oct. 7 terrorist attack, Hamas political leader Khaled Mashal urged supporters worldwide to give "aid, money and all that you have."

Within days, a torrent of cash began pouring into accounts set up to help Gazans.

Across the Middle East and Europe, the Gaza conflict re-energized old fundraising networks with ties to militant Islamist groups and causes.

Some of the money was ultimately deposited in Hamas-controlled accounts.

"It's very easy for someone to put up a website with a photo of an injured baby," said Matthew Levitt, a former Treasury Department counterterrorism official now at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. "This is a real opportunity if you're a Hamas fundraiser."

Israeli officials say Hamas uses some of the money to pay the salaries of its fighters and to finance political and influence operations abroad.

In the future, they say, surviving Hamas leaders could use the funds to replenish the group's stockpile of rockets.

Beware Hezbollah’s Dual-Nationals
On December 27, Hezbollah announced that Ali Ahmad Bazzi had risen “as a martyr on the road to Jerusalem” and released his martial portrait. Hit by an Israeli strike, Bazzi died with his brother Ibrahim and Ibrahim’s wife. In death, Bazzi joined a growing list of Hezbollah military personnel killed by Israeli strikes as Israel and Hezbollah fought along the Israel-Lebanon border. What sets him apart is that Ali and his brother were both Australian nationals—Ibrahim was in Lebanon to bring his wife back to Australia after she had been granted a visa.

Since 9/11, Western countries have closely monitored Al Qaeda’s and Islamic State’s foreign fighters. The Bazzi brothers’ case should alert Western governments that Hezbollah, too, poses a risk among Shia Lebanese expatriates across the vast Lebanese diaspora—estimated to include more than 15 million people worldwide, with its most significant presence in South America.

That Hezbollah has been recruiting Lebanese Shia expatriates to support its struggle is not new. But until recently, dual nationals working for Hezbollah mostly emerged from the shadows only when implicated in either terror plots or financial schemes to fund Hezbollah.

For example, in July 2012, Hezbollah operatives targeted a bus carrying Israeli tourists outside the Bulgarian resort of Burgas, murdering five Israelis and the Bulgarian bus driver. The three terrorists—Meliad Farah, Hassan el-Haji Hassan, and Mohamad Hassan El Husseini—were dual nationals of Lebanon and, respectively, Australia, Canada, and France. Elsewhere, a few days before the Burgas attack, Cypriot authorities arrested Hossam Yaakoub, a dual national of Lebanon and Sweden who was plotting to strike Israeli tourists in Cyprus. A few months later, in early 2013, an Iranian-Canadian dual national was arrested in Bulgaria while scouting another possible terror attack. Another dual national of Lebanon and Canada, Hussein Bassam Abdallah, was arrested in Cyprus and sentenced to six years in prison in 2015 for plotting terror attacks against Israeli targets. Additional Hezbollah members of its External Security Organization were arrested in the United States in 2017 and 2019. They, too, were all dual nationals—of Lebanon and the United States.

Hezbollah’s money laundering and drug trafficking both heavily rely on Lebanese expatriates. Of the dozens of Western law enforcement agency investigations over the years, it is worth mentioning the cases of: U.S.-sanctioned Kassem Tajideen, a Lebanese expatriate active in West Africa and the DRC, born in Sierra Leone and with dual nationality; Mohammed Ibrahim Bazzi, sanctioned in 2018 and subsequently arrested and extradited to the United States, who held multiple passports, including from Belgium, the Gambia and Sierra Leone; and Kassem Mohamad Hijazi extradited to the United States for money laundering, who held Brazilian and Lebanese citizenship.

Shin Bet exposes Iranian Telegram, Instagram recruitment of Israelis
The Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) on Monday revealed more details about an investigation initially publicized last month into Iranian efforts via social media networks to recruit Israeli citizens online to carry out terrorist attacks and other missions.

New information from the probe has exposed Telegram and Instagram channels operated by Iran, some reaching thousands of followers, set up to gather personal records of Israelis and get them to photograph the residential addresses of members of the security establishment.

“The Iranian security agencies make cynical and manipulative use of online platforms and promote activities against families of [Gaza] abductees. They initiate gatherings near the families’ homes, send bouquets of flowers and messages to their homes,” the Shin Bet said, in reference to the fake social media platforms promoting campaigns to pressure the government to free terrorists in exchange for the Israeli hostages held by Hamas in Gaza.

These social media channels encourage activities such as hanging signs composed by the Iranians, photographing demonstrators and filling out surveys in which the users are asked to fill out personal information, “all for the purpose of gathering a lot of information about Israeli citizens and using them in a way to carry out security missions.”

These fake platforms were exposed thanks to “advanced tools and capabilities in monitoring the online space, and thanks to the increased vigilance of Israeli citizens to fake websites and hostile platforms, following the latest publications in the media,” the Shin Bet said.

Iranian Telegram and Instagram platforms to watch out for include Tears of War, BringHomeNow, Kan +, Agrof, Powerless, Israel the Second and The Avengers.

Australia is denazifying, why can't Gaza?
Australia is going through a kind of preemptive denazification. So why can't Gaza?

Nearly eight decades after the end of World War II, Australia has just outlawed publicly making the Nazi salute or displaying the swastika or the signs of the SS. Attorney General Mark Dreyfus said the laws are necessary to deter Australians from "glorifying" or "celebrating" the "evil ideology" of Nazism.

Neo-Nazi groups in Australia have never attracted many members, and their candidates for office have won only a tiny number of votes. Most Australians want to keep it that way. Placing Nazi gestures outside the margins of civilized society is a small step in that direction.

The salute, known in German as a Hitlergrub (Hitler Greeting), was adopted by the Nazis in the 1920s, along with the accompanying words "Heil Hitler" or "Sieg Heil." After the Nazis rose to power in 1933, the salute was made compulsory for all government employees in Germany and during the singing of the German national anthem. Failure to give the salute could result in criminal prosecution or worse. Portugal's consul-general in Hamburg was beaten up by Nazi thugs for failing to salute a march by Hitler supporters. German Jews were prohibited from giving the salute on the grounds that their use of it would dishonor the gesture.

In post-World War II Germany, the Allies outlawed all Nazi symbols, gestures, and activities as part of a "deNazification" strategy. The goal was to eliminate all traces of Nazism from the political and educational systems, and from popular culture, in order to ensure that Hitler's followers could never again influence German society.

A similar policy was pursued in Japan. The American occupation authorities rewrote the Japanese Constitution and drastically reformed Japan's schools. They also implemented what was known as the Shinto Directive, to curb the influence of the Shinto religion because of its militaristic elements. Shinto-linked government officials were removed from office, Shinto priests and shrines were deprived of government funding, and school textbooks reflecting Shinto ideology were revised or eliminated.

In the years following World War II, many other countries – now including Australia – implemented laws to obstruct neo-Nazi activity, even when such legislation ruffled the feathers of some civil libertarians.

Thus in addition to Australia (and Germany), the Nazi salute is outlawed in Austria, Slovakia, and the Czech Republic. In Sweden, giving the salute is considered a hate crime. In many other European countries, it is prohibited if used to promote Nazism.
Why we’re standing with Israel: A Latter-day Saint view
Rabbi Tuly Weisz, founder of Israel365, was quoted recently suggesting that the Jewish community must increase outreach to Christian allies during this time of crisis in Israel.

Israel365 is an organization dedicated to building bridges of understanding between Christians and Jews worldwide.

Rabbi Tuly understands the importance of strengthening those ties when Israel is fighting for its survival, and fighting to protect the western world from terrorist attacks.

We echo Rabbi Tuly’s call, and likewise encourage our own Christian community to deepen the connection between us and our Jewish brothers and sisters. As Christians who are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, we feel compelled to express our support for Israel’s existence as a matter of personal faith and principles.

That includes her right to defend the lives of her citizens. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is a Christian church founded in 1830 and headquartered in the American state of Utah, with 17 million members worldwide.

We write at a time when the State of Israel is continuing to fight for its existence on all fronts. Moral and religious clarity demands that we speak our conscience to the world: The State of Israel must decisively defend itself from terrorism. Israel’s war against Hamas is not retaliation or revenge for October 7th. It is a justified endeavor to finally eliminate attacks by removing the bases of terrorist power.

Let’s be clear: Hamas is not a legitimate army fighting for the territorial rights of the Palestinian Arabs; it is a terrorist organization bent on killing Jews the world over. The Hamas Covenant (1988) states, “The Day of Judgement will not come about until Muslims fight the Jews (killing the Jews), when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees.”
On Martin Luther King Jr day: What is the response to antisemitism?
The image is chilling in its overt and malevolent celebration of the brutal Hamas attack of last October 7, in which over 1,200 Israeli civilians died.

Released by the national office of Black Lives Matter (BLM) in Chicago and featured on X, with the slogan “I Stand With Palestine,” the meme portrays a Hamas fighter on a paraglider on his way to participate in the murderous mission of October 7.

Separately, The Movement for Black Lives, a coalition of more than 50 Black liberationist organizations – including BLM – released a statement condemning “the deadly, racist attacks against the Palestinian people by the Israeli state.”

Demanding a full cutoff of US military aid to Israel, the Movement for Black Lives also called on the Biden administration to impose sanctions until Israel “stops its apartheid practices and settler-colonial project.”

For a rabbi who has devoted close to 40 years to strengthening Black-Jewish relations in America, the bitterly antisemitic celebration by BLM of Hamas’s slaughter of Jews, including the unspeakable atrocities such as mass rapes, truly felt like a dagger to the heart.
Celebrating Equality on Martin Luther King Jr. Day
In tribute to Martin Luther King Jr. Day, UN Watch invites its readers to listen to Reverend King’s “I Have A Dream” speech from 1963 — one of the greatest speeches in history.

We also share below Morris Abram’s story about growing up amid segregation. Ambassador Abram, the late founder of UN Watch, was a close friend and colleague of Reverend King in the civil rights struggle.

A House Divided Can’t Stand; A House United Will Stand
UN Watch founder Morris B. Abram with fellow civil rights activists. Washington, DC, November 17, 1965. Veteran leader A. Philip Randolph launched the White House Conference on Civil Rights with a call for a "Freedom Budget" to wipe out black ghettos in U.S. cities. Here at the start of the conference are (Left to Right): Morris B. Abram, Co-Chairman of the conference; the Rev. Martin Luther King; Randolph; John Lewis, head of the Students for Non-Violent Action; and William T. Coleman, another Co-Chairman. UN Watch founder Morris B. Abram with fellow civil rights activists. Washington, DC, November 17, 1965. Veteran leader A. Philip Randolph launched the White House Conference on Civil Rights with a call for a “Freedom Budget” to wipe out black ghettos in U.S. cities. Here at the start of the conference are (Left to Right): Morris B. Abram, Co-Chairman of the conference; the Rev. Martin Luther King; Randolph; John Lewis, head of the Students for Non-Violent Action; and William T. Coleman, another Co-Chairman.

Speech by Ambassador Morris B. Abram, Founder of UN Watch
Delivered to the Anti-Defamation League
Atlanta, October 1999

It was Abe Foxman’s thoughtful suggestion that I speak in Atlanta on the great changes in attitudes which have occurred from my arrival to practice law on Peachtree Street in 1948 until today.

Preparation for these remarks have brought memories, of course, but a great deal of regret – even shame – and some pride. You will understand these emotions, I think, and a great deal of the material will be in anecdotal form, perhaps the most suitable way to present it.

It all begins in a small South Georgia town, two hundred miles from here; Fitzgerald, established in 1896 as a colony town by Union veterans of the Civil War. These were soon joined by others from Confederate ranks – so that the town had street names for Robert E. Lee, Ulysses Grant and there was even a Stonewall Jackson street and, God forbid, a street named for General Sherman.

The town was sufficiently divided so that on May 30th we celebrated National Memorial Day with the Northerners making motoring tours to Andersonville, thirty miles away, to weep for their dead, and to damn the Southerners for their mass cruelties at that terrible camp where 30,000 Northern veterans were once imprisoned and many died. Southerners observed a separate Memorial Day on April 30th.
African American Christian Leaders Fulfill MLK's Vision on Israel Trip
African American Christian leaders who took a trip of a lifetime to Israel over the Summer, fulfilling the vision of Martin Luther King in his Promised Land Speech

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