Thursday, February 01, 2024

From Ian:

Melanie Phillips: America and Britain cross a treacherous red line
In The New York Times, Thomas Friedman, who is used as a conduit for the Biden administration’s anti-Israel trial balloons, wrote that the proposed recognition of “Palestine” signals an awareness that the United States “will never have the global legitimacy, the NATO allies and the Arab and Muslim allies it needs to take on Iran in a more aggressive manner unless we stop letting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hold our policy hostage.”

This venomous distortion breathtakingly blames Netanyahu for fighting to defend Israel against genocidal Iran. Yet it was the appeasement of Iran by the Obama and Biden administrations that led to the Oct. 7 pogrom, the unleashing of Iranian war across the region and now three deaths and dozens of casualties among Americans.

To imply that the Iranian regime which screams “Death to America!” and aims to Islamize the world is only waging this war because of the absence of a Palestinian state is as unhinged as it is disgusting.

The Biden administration is riddled with vicious haters of Israel holding key Middle East policy positions. And, of course, Britain is the original cause of this conflict, having torn up its commitment under the Palestine Mandate to settle the Jews throughout Palestine and offering part of it to their Arab attackers instead—the original “two-state solution.”

In the 1930s, Britain’s response to Palestinian Arab pogroms against Palestinian Jews was to reward the Arabs with a proposed state of their own.

In 2024, Britain’s response to a Palestinian Arab pogrom against Israeli Jews is to reward the Arabs with a proposed state of their own.

The supercilious Lord Cameron of Chipping Norton resembles nothing so much as a British Colonial Office poohbah, busy selling the pass in Mandatory Palestine while looking down his nose at the uppity Jews.

While Israel is forced to sacrifice the flower of its youth as it fights for its life, its so-called allies are placing the West itself in increasing peril as they threaten to hang the Jewish state out to dry once again to conceal their own malevolent ineptitude.
Seth Mandel: The Dangerous Racializing of Anti-Zionism
The city of Chicago is coming in for much criticism and ridicule for passing a resolution calling for a ceasefire in Gaza, instead of doing something for the residents of Chicago. But in Mayor Brandon Johnson’s defense, there will sooner be peace in Khan Younis than in Chicago.

Chicago, where a couple million people wake up every day despite their city government’s best efforts, is far from alone. Several large U.S. cities have redirected their taxpayer-funded time and attention away from their own towns and toward a place with greater potential: Gaza.

To be sure, none of these councils actually support a ceasefire in common parlance—which is to say, peace. Hamas has vowed in clear terms that if a ceasefire along the lines of Chicago’s were to be enacted, the terror group would simply conduct another Oct. 7. So what supporters of Chicago’s resolution, and others like it, are calling for is the spilling of more Jewish blood.

I don’t say this to demonstrate contempt for Brandon Johnson and his likeminded lemmings, for I truly believe they are beneath contempt. The point is that the rest of America should be aware that this kind of Jew-baiting is being baked into political survival strategies, perhaps in their own home town or state, threatening dark times upon our beloved republic.

At least the reporting on this trend has been entertaining. Take Reuters. Here’s the wire service’s headline: “US city councils increasingly call for Israel-Gaza ceasefire, analysis shows.”

They’ve run the numbers, you see. “Analysis,” in this case, means “the ability to count higher than ten.”
Gil Troy: How Palestine Hijacked the U.S. Civil Rights Movement
For over 50 years, the American left has tried rebranding the Palestinian cause by camouflaging Palestinian terrorism with the slogans of America’s civil rights movement. Today, a new generation of would-be radicals has stumbled onto this zombie corpse of ahistoric sloganeering with the confident excitement of college freshmen on their first beer run.

Using pseudo-intellectual jargon like “intersectionality,” multiple identity groups and astroturfed leftist political organizations have made fealty to the Palestinian cause a litmus test for belonging to the wider left. That is why many progressives were “exhilarated” by Hamas’ massacre of innocent people, and feminists remained silent about the Gazans’ mass rape of Israeli women. The artificiality, or often absurdity, of the supposed “intersection” between Palestine and the fashionable cause of the moment matters not at all. Hence, Palestine is a queer issue, as much as it is a feminist issue, and a social justice issue. The common thread remains supposed shared oppression—regardless of how homophobic, sexist or dictatorial Palestinian society might be.

But most group identities, no matter how politically fashionable, lack the social, cultural, and political heft to integrate the Palestinians into the new hierarchy of American victim groups and protected minorities. In America, only race has that valence. That is why other identity groups keep trying to graft their victimhood onto the story of the Black civil rights movement to cement their legitimacy.

The Palestinian cause has gained a seat in the progressive sectarian tent by piggybacking off the historical experience of American Blacks. Especially since 2020, Palestine has become thoroughly incorporated into Black Lives Matter sloganeering and visual aesthetics. As a result, an Arab nationalist movement fighting a battle 6,000 miles away from America’s Atlantic coast has become a central component of America’s “anti-racist struggle,” regardless of its lack of even the slightest connection to the historical reality of race-based discrimination in America, or to the values of the American civil rights movement.

The differences between the Palestinian national movement and the American civil rights movement are obvious and fundamental. Palestinians have played no role in American history or the history of slavery. Palestinians played no role in the civil rights struggle. The Palestinian-Israeli clash, which is occurring a world away from America, is national not racial. Most Israelis are dark-skinned, while some Palestinians are light-skinned. Nonviolence fueled the civil rights struggle, while the Palestinian movement keeps perfecting new forms of political violence and terror-porn, from hijacking to suicide bombing.
Howard Jacobson: Why are Jews uncomfortable in Australia? Two words: The left
Before the Six Day War, Jews had been paradigmatic victims of colonialism. After the Six Day War, they were its paradigmatic proponents. Australia ceased to be the greatest place to be a Jew. Or a reader of Jane Austen, come to that, since she had been soft on slavery. Though as yet, the Australian left hasn’t called for her to be gassed.

As a highly regarded left-leaning journalist, Michael Gawenda is able to account for these changes to the moral climate of Australia from the inside. Full disclosure: My Life as Jew makes complimentary reference to me. You will have to take my word that I would have admired the book no less had it not mentioned me at all. It is a bracing, muscular, unflinching memoir, that begins, unconventionally, with a detailed account of a broiges with a one-time colleague; goes on to trace the author’s beginnings in a displaced persons’ camp after the War; and then returns to take up the question of what makes a Jew and why so many Jews, Australian and otherwise, find being Jewish such a problem for their politics. By interweaving the public and the personal in this way, Gawenda makes his life in Australia a sort of case study. The book asks how to live as a Jew in Australia, but more generally how to live as a Jew anywhere, how to love the Jewish people (as he is not afraid to put it) at a time when there is so much pressures not to do so.

In this way, it is both a memoir and a conversation, a passionate confrontation with the faint-hearted, whether they are distinguished Jewish thinkers of the past, such as Hannah Arendt, or friends and contemporaries on the left with whom he could once talk about a Jewish future but who now toe the party line on Zionism and expect him to do the same. Here, Gawenda admits to an understandable confusion of feelings, part anger, part grief, part grim humour. “It is a shocking thing,” he writes, that in the eyes of many leftists “I have journeyed to the dark side”.

Gawenda has plenty of fight in him but don’t suppose that My Life as a Jew is a Book of Broiges. If anything, it is an exemplary story of personal and philosophical survival, a struggle to hold on to what drew the author to the left originally while not letting its prevailing partisanship suck him down into its whirlpool of cant. It is also a promise to himself to find a meaning that vindicates the “rich and living Jewishness” his parents brought with them from Poland to Australia, allowing that just as they could not fully pass it on to him, so he cannot fully pass it on to his children.

“What Kind of a Jew am I?” Gawenda goes on asking and it his insistence on remaining a “Jew in full” that powers this invigorating book through what could have been a deep existential despondency. Instead, he keeps his wits about him and his options open. He is as engaged in Australian culture as ever, but Judaism goes on beckoning to him “in some mysterious, inexplicable way”. As the book ends, he is writing poems in Yiddish and his son is putting them to music. Looking back is also a way of looking forward.

Northern Exposure
The Galilee, in northern Israel, looks invitingly lush each winter, its fields, hills, and mountains a stunning kaleidoscope of velvety green gifted by the season’s rains. It’s usually a fine time for a getaway to a national park, historical site, or B&B, with lower demand for lodging and roads less traveled.

But touring now in the Galilee is hardly ideal, with the Lebanese terrorist group Hezbollah pricking Israeli communities with missiles and drones nearly every day since Oct. 8. In retaliation, the Israel Defense Forces has struck Hezbollah sites by air and artillery. Israel’s government evacuated populated northern areas lying within 3 miles of the border with Lebanon, just as it relocated residents of communities near the Gaza Strip following Hamas’ Oct. 7 invasion.

To gauge the situation, I spent two full days (Jan. 24 and 25) driving as far north as could safely be done—the IDF closed several of the northernmost roads running along the border—and visiting six diverse communities from the Mediterranean Sea eastward: two moshavim (Betzet and Margaliot), a kibbutz (Sasa), a Jewish village (Metulla), a small Christian-Muslim town (Jish), and a large Jewish town (Kiryat Shemona). Jish showed ample signs of life, while the others were ghostly deserted. Metulla and Margaliot sit along the border, requiring extreme caution to visit. In Sasa, Metulla, and Kiryat Shemona, I passed buildings struck by Hezbollah-launched missiles. I went through checkpoints on the roads and at entrances to some communities; in normal times, those checkpoints don’t exist.

On some sidewalks and entry gates to communities now stand portable concrete bomb shelters. In three places I came upon enormous, 20-foot-high concrete barriers dropped into the lanes of main roads, zigzag style, to shield drivers should snipers or missiles suddenly threaten.

Citizens I encountered spoke of their preference to be home now. Some relocated temporarily but commute home to work, while some stayed put. Those with children said they know that normal life won’t resume until quiet is restored to their region so families can return and schools can reopen. Most interviewees said they expect some of their neighbors not to return at all.

Most posited that a full-fledged war won’t break out, but also that they wouldn’t be surprised if they are wrong—and if that happens, they said, it would result from either side making a mistake or Hezbollah intentionally escalating. Most said that they believed the situation could be calmed if the United Nations expels Hezbollah from Lebanese border villages to north of the Litani River, as Israel demands—but that such a relocation would be illusory, given the organization’s possessing long-range missiles able to reach most of Israel even from that greater distance.
A Hamas terror attack was mooted as a storyline for Fauda but series creator Avi Issacharoff thought it was outlandish
Early on in the writing process of Fauda season five last year, the hit show’s star and co-creator Lior Raz suggested the idea of a story about group of Hamas terrorists making their way across the Gaza border and taking over one of the kibbutzim on the Israeli side.

Avi Issacharoff, creator of the series, admits ruefully that he shut down the idea, deeming it outlandish. “We had an argument about it and I remember saying, ‘Guys, what are the chances that tens of terrorists will get to the border and the IDF wouldn’t have any indication of it? That they wouldn’t be shot down? They’d be killed before they got close, surely?”

He sighs ruefully; still shocked at how wrong he was. In many ways he’s an expert in the ways of the Palestinians – as an Arabic-speaking Israeli he not only went undercover among the Palestinians like the special forces group depicted in Fauda, but as a journalist he also wrote about Hamas, and even met many of their leaders. But now he admits that he never truly understood Hamas – and the way he got it wrong shows how the Israeli authorities got it wrong too.

“There were indications they were planning this; Israeli intelligence was told they were planning it a year ago,” he says. “There were female officers who saw them training and warned it was unusual. And even the night before there was some indication of what was going to happen – from what I understand there was a meeting scheduled to discuss it at 8am.”

And yet they got it wrong. Why? “It is the billion-dollar question,” says Avi. “It is hard to explain unless you think of the policy towards Hamas through one word: ‘containment’. There was conception that Hamas was deterred. If you look at Hamas through a Western, logical point of view, then it is nuts what they did, knowing that if they tried to killed five soldiers or 50 soldiers then we were going to try and destroy them, kill them all. And then they killed 1,200 people, kidnapped 240.”

Nicole Lampert and Avi Issacharoff
In some ways Hamas’ success has worked against them. “Because they went so far there is a consensus in Israel that there had to be a ground invasion, that we had to do whatever was needed to bring them down. They also thought organisations like Hezbollah would join them, they expected the West Bank to join them and the Israeli Arabs too. But they killed Israeli Arabs – they shot a pregnant woman in a hijab.”

He shakes his head, still stunned. “I think the whole of Israel is in a kind of post traumatic national phenomenon. I don’t think there is anybody in Israel today who doesn’t know someone either killed or kidnapped in or since October 7.” Sadly, that includes himself. Fauda crew member Matan Meir was killed while serving in the IDF in November, and Avi’s stepdaughter’s boyfriend Shahar Friedman was killed in action just a few hours after Avi had been down to the frontline to visit him. Fauda star Idan Amedi was badly wounded, although Avi happily reports that he is now on the mend.
Eli Lake: Tracey Jacobson Abandoned Our Afghan Allies. Now She’s Getting a Promotion.
When America was retreating from its 20-year-war in Afghanistan in August 2021, Omar was one of the Afghan allies President Joe Biden promised to rescue. He had performed a perilous task for the U.S. military: identifying and neutralizing roadside mines embedded by the Taliban insurgency.

Omar was supposed to receive a special immigrant visa, or SIV, which would have been his ticket to a new life in the U.S. now that his old life was in grave danger from the Taliban.

He never got that SIV. Instead, after being stopped at a checkpoint last February, Taliban thugs dragged him from his home two days later and beat him to a pulp for helping the United States. His family found his unconscious body lying limp on the street. After four surgeries, Omar succumbed to his wounds and died that same month. (The Free Press is withholding Omar’s last name to protect his family)

Nearly two years after Biden’s disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan, there are 150,000 Afghans like Omar who put their lives at risk to work with the U.S. government, but are still waiting for their SIVs. Though the SIV process was supposed to provide an escape route for our Afghan allies, that process was “chaos incarnate,” said Tom Kasza, the executive director of the 1208 Foundation, which helps former Afghan allies obtain their visas.

And yet the woman in charge of the SIV Taskforce during the fiasco is getting a promotion. Last week, the White House nominated Tracey Jacobson, 59, to be the next U.S. ambassador to Iraq. The last time Biden talked publicly about Jacobson was on August 14, 2021, the day before Kabul fell to the Taliban. The president said he was putting Jacobson “in charge of a whole-of-government effort to process, transport, and relocate Afghan Special Immigrant Visa applicants and other Afghan allies.”

America’s ambassador to Iraq is a crucial appointment now that the U.S. is engaged in a regional war with Iran and its proxies. Iran’s militias in Iraq, which draw their salaries from the government budget in Baghdad, have stepped up their attacks since Hamas’s October 7 massacre in Israel. One of those militias, the Islamic Resistance in Iraq, claimed credit Sunday for a drone attack on a U.S. base in Jordan that killed three service members and wounded at least 34 more.

Jacobson has extensive experience as a diplomat, having worked as an ambassador to Kosovo, Tajikistan, and Turkmenistan. Her most recent post was as the chargé d’affaires for the U.S. embassy in Ethiopia. But she has no experience serving at a senior level in an Arabic country.
An Antisemitic War of Words
Israel’s war against Hamas following the Oct. 7 attacks has brought politically charged anti-Zionist buzzwords to a head. The ensuing Israel offense in Gaza has spurred ubiquitous accusations, from “genocide” — which saw particular consideration by the global community — to the usual “apartheid,” “colonization,” and “ethnic cleansing.” Setting aside that Gaza has not been subject to Israeli law nor residence since 2005, Israel’s opponents also use words to both demonize Israel and delegitimize the Jewish state and people as a whole.

In depicting Israel and the Jews at large as all-powerful entities, antisemitic anti-Zionists seek to offset the fact that Israel is a tiny landmass surrounded by 21 Arab and Muslim countries. Many of Israel’s neighbors are not only hostile, such as Hamas in Gaza and Hezbollah in Lebanon, but nuclear-capable, such as Iran and Pakistan. Moreover, antisemites masquerading as anti-Zionists often spread their ire to Diaspora Jews, depicting the Jewish community as wielding power over others. Whereas Nazi ideology framed Jews as both racially impure and helping to replace the “Aryan” race with other impure groups, today’s self-proclaimed “progressive” anti-Zionists frame Jews as oppressing “true” minority groups.

Indeed, the word “minority” seems to take on a different meaning when it comes to Jews in this day and age. Whereas the term tends to signify a relatively small group of people amidst a larger group, the United Nations further defines a minority as, “An ethnic, religious or linguistic minority is any group of persons which constitutes less than half of the population in the entire territory of a State whose members share common characteristics of culture, religion or language, or a combination of any of these.” This sociological context, however, still emphasizes size over relative power. By all accounts, comprising less than 2% of the world’s population and having only one country to call their own, Jews constitute a minority group. Further, given the turbulence of Jewish history throughout the Diaspora in Europe under the Shoah and pogroms in Islamic nations, Jews also count as at-risk for discrimination.

In this way, despite many anti-Zionists’ insistence that Jews are an ultra-powerful group whose influence has nothing to do with numbers, both Jewish history and the relentless prevalence of global antisemitism suggest otherwise. Yet, when not justifying antisemitism against a significant minority as legitimate opposition to Israeli oppression, Western and Islamist antisemites adapt their rhetoric to attack another aspect of Jewish peoplehood – the indigenous connection to the Land of Israel.
Israel is wrong to give aid to antisemitic countries
Israeli aid organizations were among the first responders on the ground, committing themselves to both short-term aid and longer-term efforts to facilitate reconstruction. Prime Minister Netanyahu issued a public statement saying that part of its aid would be delivered inside Syria – despite the Assad regime refusing this aid, which was then delivered without publicity or thanks.

After all that, in the face of the historically devastating October terror attack on Israeli soil, one might expect some of these countries to offer support for a state that has risen to their aid in times of urgent need. One would be wrong.

In keeping with longstanding tradition, Israel received nearly all its emergency aid from the United States, while the rest of the world funneled its dollars into Gaza. The countries – from Indonesia and Haiti to Syria and Egypt – that swallowed their anti-Israel bias and gladly accepted the country’s support when it served their state, have offered precisely zero dollars in relief aid since October 7.

In fact, many of these nations returned the favor by fanning the flames of the virulent rise in anti-Israel and anti-Jewish hate. In Turkey, where Israeli teams rescued 19 people from the earthquake rubble, dispatched 13 NGOs to ally with Turkish organizations in life-saving missions, and sent a United Hatzalah plane carrying over 10 tons of humanitarian and medical equipment, President Tayyip Erdogan spoke in front of hundreds of thousands of people at an anti-Israel rally, calling the country an “occupier” and a “war criminal.”

Erdogan’s anti-Israel vitriol opened the door for months of antisemitic unrest in Turkey, where tens of thousands of protesters still march each week, chanting “Allahu Akbar” and “Murderer Israel, Get Out of Palestine.” Israel’s record of humanitarian aid, even to unfriendly countries such as Turkey, is undoubtedly commendable, reflecting the country’s genuine commitment to foreign cooperation and emergency relief. But the utter thanklessness of the world’s response speaks to a pathetic truth – the Jewish state can bend over backward to appease its enemies and it will never be enough.

Jew-haters will be Jew-haters no matter how much aid Israel gives or how many of their countrymen Israelis rescue. No number of dollars or tons of aid will convince a state with antisemitism baked into its animating ideals to overlook its prejudices and rise to Israel’s defense during a time of need.

This is a sad reality that reflects a slew of equally sad truths about Israel’s isolation on the world stage. But it is a sad reality that Israelis must face head-on as the country starts picking up the pieces of its post-October 7 devastation.

Going forward, any aid dollar spent in service of bettering Israel’s image among indifferent states or swooping to the defense of longstanding is a dollar wasted.

The Jewish people must contend with the ongoing aftermath of the deadliest antisemitic attack since the Holocaust, and our responsibility right now lies with our people, our community, and our allies – certainly not with nations that malign us and wave away our well-intentioned efforts at cooperation.
Are Jewish and Arab refugees created equal?
At an early stage in the Arab-Israeli conflict, the U.N. was coopted by its powerful Arab-Muslim voting bloc. This bloc engineered a shift from universal concern for refugees to an obsession with only one refugee population—the Palestinians. While UNRWA is dedicated to the exclusive care of Palestinian refugees, all other refugees in the world are served by the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). In fact, there are 10 U.N. agencies solely concerned with Palestinian refugees, most of whom are not refugees but rather descendants of refugees. These agencies define refugee status as depending only on “two years’ residence” in “Palestine.” The definition makes no mention of “fear of persecution” or resettlement.

Most tellingly, out of 65 million recognized refugees around the world, Palestinian refugees are the only ones permitted to pass their refugee status on to succeeding generations. As a result, it is estimated that the current population of Palestinian “refugees” is over five million, only a fraction of whom are refugees under any reasonable definition.

Moreover, alone among the refugees of the world, Palestinian refugees are granted the privilege of demanding “repatriation” over resettlement. Israel, for obvious reasons, considers this a red line.

Nonetheless, the Arab nations have maintained this double standard both as a weapon against Israel and to avoid the substantial cost of resettling the refugees themselves. In 1959, the Arab League passed resolution 1457, which stipulated that, except in Jordan, the Arab countries would not grant citizenship to applicants of Palestinian origin. This discrimination continues today.

In contrast to the billions of dollars that the international community has allocated to Palestinian refugees, no such aid has been earmarked for Jewish refugees. The exception was a $30,000 grant in 1957 that the U.N., fearing protests from its Muslim members, did not want to be publicized. The grant was eventually converted into a loan, which the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee paid back.

On only two occasions did the U.N. acknowledge that Jews fleeing a Middle East or North African country were bona fide refugees. In 1957, the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, August Lindt, declared that the Jews of Egypt who were “unable or unwilling to avail themselves of the protection of the government of their nationality” fell within his remit. In July 1967, the UNHCR recognized Jews fleeing Libya as refugees under the UNHCR mandate.

Needless to say, none of these Jews still define themselves as refugees. Despite immense hardships, they are now full citizens of Israel and other countries.

Is it too much to ask for a similar humanitarian solution to the predicament of Palestinian refugees?
Many Gazans like me despise Hamas but are too scared to speak out
Growing up in Gaza, I distinctly remember Hamas’s rise to power and its creeping domination of Palestinian politics and social affairs. After taking over the territory in a bloody coup, Hamas ruled with an iron fist and criminalised opposition for nearly two decades.

I now live in the United States and have been very public about my hatred of Hamas. My freedom of speech is a privilege, and I will not refrain from expressing my true beliefs simply because I’m worried about who might disagree with me. But although voices like mine might seem few and far between, I believe that many more Palestinians agree with me than you may think.

It is true that recent polls by the Arab World Research and Development group and the Palestinian Center for Policy Survey and Research have found widespread and growing support for Hamas among Palestinians, including in Gaza, following October 7. But I’m certain these figures are misleading.

Face-to-face polling will inevitably generate paranoia amongst Palestinians on the ground, with respondents worrying they are talking to either Israeli agents or Hamas informants. We have yet to see the results of a poll that allows Palestinians to confidentially express their true feelings.

Even though I no longer live in the Strip, I have experienced this intimidation first-hand. Since October 7, when I started to speak out openly against Hamas, I have faced a daily torrent of hate messages, harassment, threats, and online abuse. Accusations of treason, cowardice, being a spy, a sellout, or a paid “Zionist bootlicker” are common insults I receive for sharing any views that are critical of Hamas or the “resistance”.

Even members of my own family in Gaza have warned me that I’m tempting fate. After an Israeli airstrike killed 30 members of my mother’s family in Rafah on 14 December (two more were killed in an October strike on our home in Gaza City), one relative warned me: “If the Israelis don’t kill the rest of us, Hamas might finish us off, thanks to your writing.” But my freedom of speech is a privilege and I will not silence myself.
Former Palestinian Terrorist Slams Hamas: ‘Brought Disgrace to Our People’
Mohammad Massad says he was only eight years old when he was pulled out of a classroom by keffiyeh-masked men and taken to a road to throw rocks at Israeli soldiers and chant that he was willing to “die for Palestine” during the 1982 Lebanon War.

Now, Massad, 48, lives in Haifa as an Israeli citizen and believes Hamas needs to be obliterated.

“Destroying Hamas is not a decision made in secret meetings or around tables,” he told The Daily Wire. “It is a decree by God, the Creator of the world.”

Massad was born in the Arab town of Burquin in the West Bank to a family with strong ties to the group Fatah, which was considered a terrorist organization by the United States at the time.

“I was surrounded by a culture that preached hatred toward Jews, plotting their murder, their annihilation, their removal, and their expulsion into the sea,” he said.

Now living in Israel, where he says he enjoys “the same rights as any Israeli Jew,” he has turned on his former fellow terrorists.

“I reside in this country and I view it as my home, so I feel obligated to defend it, to safeguard its security with all my might,” he said.

Massad said he helped the Israeli government prevent dozens of terrorist attacks and dismantle hundreds of terror cells.

“I prevented much bloodshed and many killings and murders on both sides,” he said. “I was most successful in this role because of my background. Coming from within the ranks of the terrorists, I understood their mindset, their plans, their strategies, and their intentions.”

Massad was just a teenager when he became part of Fatah’s military arm, the Black Panthers, and was first arrested by the Israeli Defense Forces when he was 15 years old and held for three months for throwing rocks at soldiers in 1990.

“I was surrounded by a culture that preached hatred toward Jews”

Just a year later, he was arrested again with other Panthers for holding an Israeli driver who was pulled over while his accomplices looked for an Israeli soldier to abduct, according to the Jerusalem Post. He was held for two and half years until he was released as part of the Oslo Accords and returned to the West Bank.
Former Palestinian Terrorist Calls For The Obliteration Of Hamas
Mohammad Massad says he was only seven-years-old when he was pulled out of a classroom by keffiyeh-masked men and taken to a road to throw rocks and chant “We will die for Palestine” at Israeli soldiers during the 1982 Lebanon War. Now, Massad, 48, lives in Haifa as an Israeli citizen and says Hamas has to be obliterated.

Senior BBC Schedule Co-Ordinator Facing Disciplinary Action Over Antisemitic Facebook Posts That Referenced The “Holohoax”
A senior BBC schedule co-ordinator has been called out for a string of antisemitic Facebook posts in which she referred to the “holohoax” and peddled extreme conspiracy theories.

Deadline understands that the BBC has been notified of the posts made by Dawn Queva, a Senior Scheduling Co-ordinator & Playout Planner at BBC Three, and her line manager has been informed. While not commenting on individual staff members, the BBC said it “does not tolerate anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, or any form of abuse, and we take any such allegations seriously and take appropriate disciplinary action wherever necessary.”

Queva’s posts, which have still not been taken down, are of a rambling and vitriolic nature, and she refers to the “holohoax” and “AshkeNazis,” the latter of which is a play on the word ‘ashkenazi,’ meaning Jews who descend from those who lived in Central or Eastern Europe.

One refers to “a bunch of subcontinental European melanin recessive CaucAsian japhetic AshkeNazi who have no None zero zilch blood connection to the land of Palestine or Israel historically.”

Another brands Jewish people a “subcontinental Caucasian invader coloniser species with zero indigenous/blood.” A third brings up the conspiracy of the Rothschilds and refers to the Holocaust as the “holohoax,” accusing the Jews of “buying and selling those who kidnap from Africa,” amongst other wide-ranging accusations.

“The Zionist genocidal land squatting so called Jew’ irrespective of the fact that The UKKK and Amerikkka gave away land they had no god given right to a people who have no god given right to,” adds another post. Read screenshots below.

All posts are retweeting other videos, which tap into conspiracy theories.
Why is this extremist Gaza doctor still being fêted?
He has become known as a hero surgeon who worked in Gaza and has been fêted by the BBC and Sky. He is even a contender to become rector of the University of Glasgow, which he intends to withdraw from the IHRA definition of antisemitism.

But Dr Ghassan Abu Sittah, who has been hosted in Parliament by Liberal Democrat and Labour MPs, can be unmasked today as a shameless extremist who has frequently got too close for comfort to terrorists.

Over the years, Dr Abu Sittah has praised a terrorist murderer in a newspaper article, sat beside a notorious terrorist hijacker at a memorial and delivered a tearful eulogy to the founder of a terror group that was later involved in the October 7 atrocities, the JC can reveal today.

Nonetheless, both while working as a surgeon in Gaza and after he returned to Britain, he has been treated as an expert by the world’s biggest media outlets, including BBC, Sky and CNN.

In November, the plastic surgeon delivered a press conference on the Israel-Hamas conflict that was broadcast by Sky News. He also provided testimony to Scotland Yard’s war crimes unit.

In December, Dr Abu Sittah was hosted in Parliament by Liberal Democrat foreign affairs spokesperson Layla Moran and Labour MP Imran Hussain before addressing NHS doctors protesting against Israel.

He was named by the BBC as a “key” source of verification for Hamas’s controversial death count in Gaza and has used his extensive media platforms to claim that Israel has used white phosphorous and targeted hospitals. He also alleged that amputations in Gaza were being carried out without anaesthetic and with washing-up liquid to clean wounds.
‘Free Palestine’ protesters crash Nikki Haley event in South Carolina
A small group of protesters interrupted former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley‘s campaign event Thursday and called for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza.

The South Carolina Republican primary won’t take place until Feb. 24, but Haley has campaigned in her home state over the past week in her comeback bid over former President Donald Trump, who has dominated the first two early contests.

Haley has encountered pro-Palestinian protesters in the past, specifically during her tenure as Trump‘s U.N. ambassador, but Thursday’s interruption at a GOP event was notable as it is President Joe Biden who is routinely heckled on the 2024 presidential campaign trail.

Shortly into Haley’s remarks, at least three protesters stood up inside Doc’s Barbeque in Columbia and began chanting, “Free, free Palestine!”

One of the female protesters accused Haley of being disqualified from being president for being beholden to Israeli interest groups.

“Netanyahu is your puppet master!” the woman shouted while being escorted from the building.

Soros family wires thousands to top anti-Israel Democrat Pramila Jayapal’s PAC
Democratic megadonor George Soros and his son Alex Soros poured $10,000 combined late last year into anti-Israel “Squad” Rep. Pramila Jayapal’s (D-WA) leadership PAC, records show.

The Soroses cut checks totaling $5,000 each on Dec. 1, 2023, to Build Our Movement, a PAC affiliated with Jayapal that counts its treasurer as Lauren Lalonde, campaign manager for the congresswoman, according to year-end 2023 Federal Election Commission filings released Wednesday evening.

News of the cash transfers come after Jayapal faced heightened scrutiny from lawmakers for her antagonistic rhetoric about Israel on the heels of Hamas and other Palestinian terrorist factions killing more than 1,200 people in Israel on Oct. 7 last year. The lawmaker attempted in July to walk back her prior decision to call Israel a “racist state,” which had led to more than 40 House Democrats denouncing Jayapal’s comments as “unacceptable.”

“Israel remains the only vibrant, progressive, and inclusive democracy in the region,” the House Democrats wrote in their statement at the time. “Arab parties serve in the Knesset, women serve at the highest levels of the military, and the country remains an oasis for LGBTQ+ people in a region hostile toward the community. Pluralism flourishes in Israel.”

“We are deeply concerned about Representative Pramila Jayapal’s unacceptable comments regarding our historic, democratic ally Israel, and we appreciate her retraction,” the statement read.

In June, Jayapal’s campaign also received $6,600 each from George Soros and Alex Soros, the Washington Examiner reported.

George Soros, a billionaire who is one of the most influential liberal donors in the United States, has long supported political campaigns and nonprofit organizations seeking to delegitimate the Jewish state of Israel. Liberals often equate Republicans slamming the influence of George Soros to “antisemitism” since the megadonor is Jewish.

The Soros-funded Foundation to Promote Open Society has given more than $2 million in recent years to Al-Haq, an Israeli-designated terrorist group, the Washington Examiner reported.
Australia's BUSTED 'Jussie Smollett' hate crime hoaxer REFUSES to apologise
In the early hours of November 10 last year, a fire ravaged the Burgertory store in Caulfield, Melbourne, igniting a disturbing chain of events that shook the city's Jewish community.

The owner, Hash Tayeh, a Palestinian-Australian, swiftly pointed fingers at the local Jewish population, alleging a hate crime in the wake of his anti-Israel activism.

However, as the layers of this unsettling saga are peeled back, it becomes evident that this was a carefully orchestrated hoax with far-reaching consequences.

Tayeh's deceptive narrative not only misled the public but also fueled a dangerous cycle of hatred and violence.

The blame for this distressing episode extends beyond Tayeh, encompassing individuals and organisations that willingly propagated his falsehoods.

It's imperative to scrutinise the broader context that allowed such a concoction of lies to take root and wreak havoc.

The speed at which groups like the 'White Rose Society Australia' (who have ironically appropriated the identity of an anti-Nazi group during WWII) and the Islamic Council of Victoria embraced Tayeh's claims demonstrates a concerning willingness to exploit falsehoods for their own agendas.

Nasser Mashni, known for his anti-Israel stance, seized the opportunity on a televised platform on Q+A, mislabeling the incident as a 'pogrom' against his people.

This deliberate misrepresentation not only misled the public but also contributed to a violent mob descending upon the Jewish community.

As the truth emerged, it was revealed that the arson was not a hate crime orchestrated by Jews, but rather the actions of two men with no connection to the Jewish community.

The fallout, however, was severe, with an online campaign targeting the local Jewish population and even a call for violence by a sporting club president. The impact extended beyond the virtual realm, leading to an actual attack on locals outside a synagogue.

Tayeh, who conveniently left the country as investigations unfolded, needs to be held accountable for his role in this damaging charade. His false claims not only incited violence but also didn't help the case of a young mentally unwell Jewish man who sadly attempted suicide after he became the target of a lynch mob.

The lack of remorse from Tayeh, evident in his Instagram video blaming the victim, adds another layer of callousness to this disturbing narrative.
‘Misinformation and lies’: Story exposes ABC as ‘easy to fool’
Sky News host Andrew Bolt has reacted to a story which shows how easy it is to “fool” the ABC and “whip up a mob to hate” Israel and Jewish people.

Arrests have been made after a Burgertory restaurant owned by a pro-Palestine activist was set on fire in Caulfield in Melbourne’s southeast last year.

Moorabbin Investigation and Response Inspector Scott Dwyer said the attack was unrelated to the owner of the store, Hash Tayeh’s pro-Palestine activism.

Mr Bolt said Mr Tayeh, however, before the arrests were made, told protesters in Melbourne he was a “martyr” who was being “intimidated for opposing Israel”.

“The ABC seemed so impressed by this story of poor Hash Tayeh that it selected him to ask a question on Q and A, broadcast around the country, again posing as a victim of a hate crime,” he said.

Mr Bolt said “plot twist” for the ABC and the left as there is “no evidence” that the two perpetrators are Jewish activists or pro-Israel extremists.

“Agendas. Agendas. And this agenda seems to me to rely an awful lot on conspiracy theories, misinformation and lies,” he said.

Australia's BUSTED 'Jussie Smollett' hate crime hoaxer REFUSES to apologise

Pro-Palestinian Protesters Block DC Streets, Chant for 'Intifada'

Austrian literary festival drops Bosnian author who protested criticism of Oct. 7
A literary festival in Austria disinvited a Bosnian author for accusing Israel of genocide and accusing Germany of covering up for it under the guise of fighting antisemitism. Separately, a major children’s book fair in Bologna, Italy, appeared to dismiss a writers’ petition to ban Israelis.

These developments this week demonstrate how some cultural institutions in Western Europe are resisting artists’ growing calls for action against Israel and its allies in connection with the Israel-Hamas war in Gaza.

Lana Bastašić on Tuesday shared on Instagram the letter of her disinvitation from the Literature Festival Saltzburg and the cancelation of her residency there.

“Your stay at Literaturhaus NO and participation in the Literature Festival Salzburg would inevitably imply a positioning on our part that we do not wish for,” the letter said.

Last month, Bastašić, who won the 2020 EU prize for literature for her novel “Catch the Rabbit,” left her German publisher, S. Fischer, over its reference to Hamas’s October 7 massacre in the context of the commitment of the publishing house, founded by a Jew who fled the Nazis, to fighting antisemitism and totalitarianism.
Harvard’s Embattled Anti-Semitism Chairman Goes Mute
The embattled chairman of Harvard’s Presidential Task Force on Combating Antisemitism, Derek Penslar, had no problem talking about anti-Semitism on the Harvard campus before he was tapped to chair the committee.

"It’s not a myth, but it’s been exaggerated," Penslar, a professor of Jewish history, told the Boston Globe in an interview before his appointment. He said that while some Jewish students had been "shunned" from "progressive political communities" on campus, that did not amount to "vicious antisemitism." Hey, no campus gas chambers yet!

So imagine our surprise when Penslar, who was slated to participate in a panel discussion on Sunday at the Center for Jewish History to address the subject, "What is Antisemitism? Definitions and Debates," canceled his appearance at the last minute.

The panel moderator read an apologetic statement from Penslar to the effect that, "Since at the symposium I would invariably be asked to speak about the goings on at Harvard … it would not be appropriate for me to make public comments at this time."

Huh? Penslar could of course have said as much in response to any Harvard-related question he felt was inappropriate to answer.

But one suspects that wasn’t the real reason he threw in the towel. Penslar has already spoken publicly about his new position with the Boston Globe, telling the paper that he views the task force as "an important opportunity to determine the nature and extent of antisemitism and more subtle forms of social exclusion that affect Jewish students at Harvard." He also told the Harvard Crimson that he considered stepping down from the post given the criticism he has weathered, but that he remains "committed to helping advance the important work of this task force."
Harvard suffers a ‘massive funding blow’ for being ‘weak’ on anti-Semitism
Sky News host Chris Kenny says one of the world’s most prestigious universities, Harvard, has suffered a “massive funding blow”.

Mr Kenny said this is due to the university’s refusal to condemn calls for a “genocide” against Israel and because it has been “weak” on anti-Semitism.

“This is an encouraging development, a case of strong values and clear logic fighting back against the dangerous, woke culture that’s enveloping educational institutions around the world, and which has reached a new low over the Israel-Hamas conflict,” he said.

Mr Kenny said hedge fund billionaire Ken Griffin – who’s donated millions to the university – is now going to “let his money talk” as he is now going to stop financially supporting Harvard.

“That is a high price for Harvard to pay but deservedly so,” he said.

“The university has shown moral weakness and intellectual cowardice, and Griffin is prepared to make them pay.”

Penn Lecturer Is Behind Grotesque Anti-Semitic Cartoons
A lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania's Annenberg School of Communication has published several anti-Semitic cartoons since Hamas's Oct. 7 attack, including one that depicts Zionists sipping Gazan blood from wine glasses, a version of the ancient blood libel employed in anti-Semitic propaganda that accused Jews of using the blood of Christian children for baking matzah and other rituals.

Dwayne Booth, who joined Penn's Annenberg School for Communication as an adjunct faculty member in 2015 and teaches two classes at the Ivy League institution, publishes political cartoons under the pen name "Mr. Fish."

Another Booth cartoon, posted to his Instagram, shows Jews in a Nazi concentration camp holding signs bearing slogans such as "Free Palestine," "Stop The Holocaust In Gaza," and "Gaza, The World's Biggest Concentration Camp."

Yet another depicts Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a bloodied, red-eyed butcher holding a long knife and a crumpled Palestinian flag, while a third shows an Israeli holding a gun to a hospitalized baby's head.

A fifth cartoon depicts a Nazi flag with a Star of David drawn in place of a swastika.

Penn's Annenberg School for Communication did not return a request for comment. Booth is teaching a class on political cartoons devoted to exploring "the purpose and significance of image-based communication as an unparalleled propagator of both noble and nefarious ideas," according to Penn's website. "Work presented will be chosen for its unique ability to demonstrate the inflammatory effect of weaponized visual jokes, uncensored commentary, and critical thinking on a society so often perplexed by artistic free expression and radicalized creative candor," the school says. It is not clear whether students study Booth's work in the class.
Rally outside New York City ed department shines light on antisemitism in schools
People gathered outside of the Tweed Courthouse and offices of the New York City Department of Education on Wednesday afternoon to raise awareness of Jew-hatred in the city’s public schools.

Carrying Israeli flags, and shouting “Am Israel Chai” and “End Jew-hatred,” they demanded that David Banks, the city’s schools chancellor, take action to protect Jewish students and teachers. They noted that since the Hamas terrorist attacks in Israel on Oct. 7, Jews in the school system have felt marginalized and unsafe.

The rally was sponsored by #EndJewHatred, the New York City Public School Alliance, the Israeli-American Council, Club Z-Zionism for Teens and several other organizations.

In recent months, there have been numerous reports of anti-Jewish incidents, such as a public school classroom that displayed a map of “Palestine” where Israel should have been and a Jewish teacher in Queens, N.Y., who had to barricade in an office against students who were rioting against her being in the classroom.

Organizers of the Jan. 31 rally noted that the schools’ chancellor has stressed that teachers need to remain neutral and that students need to have “safe spaces for respectful dialogue.” Still, anti-Jewish and anti-Israel sentiment continues to occur, they say.

They point to an upcoming two-part virtual workshop by “Educators for Palestine” geared to provide educators with advice and hands-on tips on “how to combat censorship as we strive to create classrooms that foster justice, understanding and healing,” as well as to share educational materials on “the history of Israeli occupation and the ongoing genocide in Gaza.”

CAMERA’s Impact Upsets The Intercept
We can thank The Intercept, at least, for recognizing CAMERA’s efforts and successes.

Their January 2024 article—a polemic that’s one part defense of Hamas, one part rant against CAMERA, and one part insinuation that an editor’s late father pulls the New York Times strings from beyond the grave—is unsubtle in its hostility toward Israel. We’d expect nothing else from The Intercept. The tenor of the piece is conspiratorial. Again, not a surprise considering the source.

And still, authors Daniel Boguslaw and Ryan Grim get some things right. It is true, for example, that CAMERA has “successfully lobbied for hundreds of corrections in major media outlets.” (Hundreds yearly. We cleared the record of 303 published errors in 2023, and another 246 in 2022. But who’s counting.)

And indeed, we’ve pressed the New York Times specifically to get it right, as the authors note.

The Intercept credits CAMERA with (or rather blames us for) a 2021 editors’ note in the Times that admits miscoverage of Refaat Alareer. Guilty as charged. The paper had published a glowing feature on Alareer, an unhinged, antisemitic poetry professor in Gaza, casting him as a bridge-builder who encouraged students to empathize with Israelis. But when CAMERA tracked down video of Alareer teaching his course, it became clear that the man who had argued online that “most Jews [are] evil” was hardly any better in the classroom.

We confronted editors with the video and, after a week with the overwhelming evidence in hand, the Times finally admitted that its feature “did not accurately reflect” the professor’s teachings. (The Intercept, in its Intercept-ish way, spun the story to encourage outrage: “According to CAMERA, the piece … described Alareer in too positive a light. The Times was quick to agree….”)
After apology, British ‘Apprentice’ star keeps posting Jew-hatred
Following accusations of antisemitic social media posts by a contestant on the BBC version of the reality show “The Apprentice,” the broadcaster arranged a diversity and inclusion training for Asif Munaf, a physician.

“I apologize for any offense caused by my online content/social media. It was not my intention to offend anyone, and I am of course open to all views,” stated Munaf, a former contestant on “Dragons’ Den,” which resembles the “Shark Tank” U.S. reality show. “The beliefs I hold and have shared are based on the values that I was brought up with.”

On Oct. 17, Munaf, who is now a wellness entrepreneur, wrote that “Zionists are extremely strong. They have strong media, miliary [sic] and banking. They are godless, satanic cult believing in kabalistic rituals and obscure eschatology. They are preparing the world very nicely for the trial on the antichrist. The issue is, most people don’t read.”

Two days later, he added—in another social media post that remains live despite his apparent apology—“My sons have been alive during a once-in-a-century pandemic and an apocalyptic genocide during their first five years on earth. I pray they are strong enough physically, spiritually and psychologically to overcome the trial of the Zionist antichrist. Hard times create strong men.”

A spokesperson for “The Apprentice,” whose new series begins airing this Thursday, told the Telegraph that the show took immediate action after discovering Munaf’s posts after filming concluded. The show claims that Munaf would not have been included in the show had staff known about the posts before filming.
Desperate Media Accuse Israel of ‘War Crime’ Over Killing of Terrorists in Daring Hospital Raid
When the media came to report the incident, however, some of these facts were soon twisted beyond recognition or omitted entirely to, in some cases, suggest Israel had acted unlawfully by killing the three men.

The most outrageous examples of skewing the story came in the form of headlines from The Washington Post, CNN and the BBC which all obscured the fact that the Palestinian men were terrorists who were preparing to carry out an imminent attack against Israeli civilians.

The Washington Post’s was the most outrageous, with the publication ignoring that all three had been immediately claimed by terrorist organizations and instead reporting that Israeli agents “kill[ed] 3 in West Bank hospital,” which implicitly suggested the dead people were innocent patients.

CNN omitted entirely the fact that the men were confirmed as terrorists in a headline that stated Israeli special forces had “infiltrated” the facility to “kill Palestinian men.”

Meanwhile, the BBC referred to the terrorists as “fighters” in a headline, a choice that seemed to glamorize the deceased. In the same article, the hospital’s director, Dr. Naji Nazzal, made the contentious claim that the men were “executed… in cold blood…”

The most outrageous reporting, however, came from the media outlets that baselessly suggested Israel may have violated international law or perpetrated a “war crime” in its killing of three terrorists.

The Economist, for example, asked whether Israel had broken the “laws of war” on the basis that soldiers disguising themselves as doctors may be an act of “perfidy” — a protection invoked under the terms of the Geneva Conventions. Perfidy describes a form of deception in which one side promises to act in good faith with the intention of breaking that promise after their enemy has left themselves vulnerable on the reliance of their enemy’s assurance.

Of course, the real breach of international law should concern three terrorists misusing a hospital as a hiding place while they planned a large-scale terror attack against Israeli civilians.
Omissions in BBC report on Jenin counter-terrorism operation
The BBC’s report promotes a second-hand quote from the director of the hospital:
“They executed the three men as they slept in the room,” the hospital’s director, Dr Naji Nazzal, told Reuters. “They executed them in cold blood by firing bullets directly into their heads in the room where they were being treated.”

An additional quote from the same person which appears at the end of the report suggests that the “they were being treated” claim is inaccurate:
“Dr Naji Nazzal said one of the men, who PIJ identified as its member, had been receiving treatment at the hospital since 25 October for a spinal injury which had left him paralysed.”

The BBC clearly made no effort to contact Dr Nazzal to ask him why – not for the first time – he had allowed members of terrorist organisations to hide inside the hospital he manages. The absence of such information hampers the ability of readers to put another quote promoted by Berg into its correct context: “The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the guardian of the Geneva Conventions which codify international humanitarian law, has expressed concern over the raid.

“Under international humanitarian law, hospitals and medical patients should be respected and protected at all times“, the ICRC said, adding that it would raise the issue “as part of its confidential dialogue with the concerned authorities”.”

Berg does not bother to inform BBC audiences that the ICRC’s own website clarifies that there are exceptions to that rule:

TikTok’s pro-Israel investors face conundrum as platform is blamed for fueling antisemitism

Lindsey Graham grills TikTok CEO on resignation of Israel representative

Ireland seeking review of EU-Israel agreement over rights concerns
Ireland is in talks with other EU members who want a review of the EU-Israel Association Agreement on the basis that Israel may be breaching the agreement's human rights clause, Prime Minister Leo Varadkar told reporters in Brussels on Thursday.

A number of EU states are also talking about a possible joint recognition of a Palestinian state after the current conflict, he said.

"EU-Israeli relations are founded on an agreement which has a human rights clause, and a lot of us believe that Israel may be in breach of it," Varadkar told reporters following an EU summit. "That's something we're talking about."

"There isn't full agreement, but it's something I called for today, and I called for last December."

Ireland for the Palestinian cause
Ireland has long been a champion of Palestinian rights, and ministers have repeatedly said the government is considering recognizing a Palestinian state. Speaking at the end of the EU summit, Varadkar said there were a lot of "very like-minded countries" around the EU table.

"Another thing we are talking about is recognition. That a number of EU states acting together to recognize Palestine could allow a more equal negotiation to happen after the war has ended in Gaza in and around a two-state solution," he said.
US Federal Court Dismisses Genocide Case Against Biden Administration, Israel Over ‘Jurisdictional Grounds’
Lawfare against Israel is again raising its head in the United States.

A federal judge in northern California has ruled that Israel is “plausibly engaging in genocide of the Palestinian people” and that the United States is providing “unflagging support” for Israeli operations in Gaza — but dismissed the case on jurisdictional grounds.

The Center for Constitutional Rights, along with co-counsel Van Der Hout, LLP of San Francisco, filed the case on behalf of the plaintiffs against President Joe Biden, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, claiming “violations of customary international law, codified in the 1948 Genocide Convention and the corresponding Genocide Convention Implementation Act (18 U.S.C. § 1091) passed by the US Congress in 1988.”

The San Francisco law firm of Van Der Hout LLP was co-counsel in the case.

The plaintiffs claimed in “Defense for Children International – Palestine v. Biden,4:23-cv-05829-JSW, Motion for Preliminary Injunctive Relief, Civil Rights” that the January 26, 2024 interim ruling of the International Court of Justice at The Hague had determined “it is plausible that Israel’s conduct amounts to genocide”.

The motion sought an emergency order to prohibit any further US military and diplomatic support to Israel while the case is being considered. They also asked the Court for declaratory and injunctive relief with an order an end to US military and diplomatic support to Israel, urging the judge to rule three top Biden administration officials failed to prevent and are aiding and abetting genocide.
Algeria picks up accusing Israel at UN where South Africa let off in The Hague
Jonathan Miller, the deputy Israeli ambassador to the United Nations, blasted members of the U.N. Security Council on Wednesday for trying to impose a judgment on Jerusalem that even the International Court of Justice wouldn’t.

The Israeli envoy called the recent ruling by the court, which is the main U.N. judicial arm, “a verdict without a crime,” and said that Algeria and South Africa—which brought the ICJ case—presented a case to the court and the world that was “an obscene inversion of reality.”

The Hamas terrorist organization has consistently and proudly made its genocidal intentions known, yet the ICJ case portrayed it as a victim and made a “vile attempt” to deny Israel the right to self-defense, Miller said.

The council met on Wednesday at Algeria’s request to discuss last Friday’s preliminary ICJ ruling, whose meaning has been hotly debated. The North African nation has long been one of the most anti-Israel countries in the world and recently took over the Security Council seat held unofficially for the Arab and Muslim world.

Some council members claimed the court found it plausible that Israel was committing genocide in Gaza. Israel and the United States pushed back, pointing out that the court stated clearly that it could come to no such conclusion at such an early stage.
Jewish SA Councilor heckled for mentioning Mandela, wearing Magen David
Jewish Councilor Daniel Shay found himself as a target of scrutiny when he invoked the name of Nelson Mandela during an Israel-Palestine debate, leading to heckling from opposition councilors, in a City of Johannesburg council meeting on Wednesday.

During Shay's speech, an opposition councilor interrupted, stating, "Speaker, on a point of order, that one cannot speak of Mandela when Mandela was against Zionists. He must speak about Hertzog, Jan Van Riebeek, and the rest."

Tensions escalated as some councilors began chanting "Free Palestine." In response, Speaker of Council Margaret Arnolds appealed for order in the chambers, saying, "Councilors, can I have order, please? Councilors, can we not heckle the councilor? Councilors, can we please not do this?"

After a few minutes, order appeared to be restored before flaring up again.

The debate quickly shifted to the topic of wearing religious symbols
Adding to the turmoil, a complaint arose regarding Councilor Shay's choice of attire. Another councilor questioned whether Shay's tie, adorned with a star symbolizing Israel, was permitted in the council. Shay clarified that the emblem was The Star of David, prompting him to assert, "If they have issues with Jewish religious symbols, they must say it out loud."

Coming to Shay's defense, DA caucus leader Belinda Kayser-Echeozonjoku emphasized the importance of protecting freedom of religion. She stated, "Speaker, freedom of religion is protected by the constitution. It is the first time in these chambers that someone's religion or expression of their religion is being questioned. Can I ask that we tread cautiously?"

Israeli police nab Gazan on his way to Jerusalem
Israeli police officers apprehended a resident of Khan Yunis in Gaza on Wednesday following a pursuit on the main highway between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.

The 27-year-old suspect had stolen a motorcycle in Tel Aviv and was on his way to the capital city on Route 1, arousing suspicions that he planned to flee to a Palestinian town in Judea or Samaria, Israel Hayom reported on Thursday.

After officers pulled the motorcycle over, they found burglary tools, gloves and other suspicious items, Israel Hayom said. Police added that the suspect, who did not hold a valid driver’s license, was taken for questioning, while the motorcycle was returned to its rightful owner.

It was unclear when and how the suspect managed to enter the Jewish state from Khan Yunis, the Hamas terror stronghold where the Israel Defense Forces has been mounting a massive military assault.
When the PLO Research Center Defended the Talmud
In 1965, the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) created a research center in Beirut, and among its tasks was trying to understand Jews, Zionism, and Israel (a far cry from the current situation, in which it is almost impossible to study Hebrew at an Arab university). The center’s publications included a translation into Arabic of an English-language anthology of key Zionist writings and a book called The Talmud and Zionism, whose author—after reading an English translation of the Talmud—provided a tractate-by-tractate summary and argued that it was not the nefarious text Arabs imagined it to be. With Dovid Bashevkin, Jonathan Gribetz discusses these and other surprising findings from his research into Palestinian perceptions of Israel.

Near the end of their conversation, Gribetz talks about his experience teaching Israeli and Palestinian history at Princeton. (Audio, 78 minutes. A transcript is available at the link below.)

MEMRI: Officers Of Hamas Security Apparatuses Trained In Qatar

PMW: Terrorists in Uniform: A study of PA Security Forces involvement in Terror This report examines the involvement of the PA Security Forces in terror and documents that far worse than being ineffectual, the PA’s security services have been playing a very active role in terror

Hamas Is Hijacking over Half the Aid Trucks Entering Gaza

HonestReporting: Palestinian Refugee Camps Are Not What You’d Expect
When discussing refugee camps, you're picturing tents, right? Wrong.

Before October 7, Palestinian refugee camps were a world away from what you'd expect. Let us explain...

‘They train us how to shoot’: How Yemeni children are recruited as Houthi foot soldiers

MEMRI: Editorial In Pakistani Daily Roznama Jasarat Accuses U.S. Of Fomenting War With Houthis To Divert Attention From Israel's Actions In Gaza: 'There Are American Jewish Agent Rulers All Over The World Who Use Their Governments Only To Protect American Interests'

MEMRI: Iranian Regime Mouthpiece 'Kayhan': 'At The Start Of The War In Gaza, We Said, Have No Doubt That Gaza Is Winning – And That Gaza's Victory Will Be Achieved By Creating A Balance Of Fear And Horror… Time Is Running Out For Israel, And A Hard Winter Awaits The Zionists, The Americans, And The Europeans!'

Antisemitism increases by 235% since outbreak of Israel-Hamas war
The annual report for 2023 and January 2024 on the fight against antisemitism published by the Diaspora Ministry, the World Zionist Organization, and the Jewish Agency showed that between October and December, the number of antisemitic incidents worldwide increased sixfold.

According to the report, following the October 7 attacks, antisemitic incidents have drastically surged to a record high.

Between the months of October and December, numbers show antisemitic incidents to be six times greater, or 235%, than the figures for the months of January through September of 2023.

Geographically, the incidents are spread across the world. The US takes pride of place with 43% of incidents reported, followed by 35% in Europe.

The report also shows a 33% increase in antisemitic attacks of a violent nature in 2023 in comparison to last year. According to the calculations, 48% of these attacks were in relation to the Swords of Iron Operation.
Georgia governor signs bill using IHRA to define Jew-hatred
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp signed a bill that uses the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA)’s working definition of antisemitism to define Jew-hatred in state law.

Jenny Sividya, who survived Hamas’s Oct. 7 terrorist attack on Israel, joined the Republican governor as he signed the bill. “Thank you for being here,” Kemp told her. “We are honored by your presence.”

“There has been a troubling rise in antisemitism across our nation in recent years, especially following the horrific terrorist attacks in Israel on Oct. 7 that claimed the lives of over 1,200 Israelis,” he said. “These acts of hatred have taken on many forms, including harassment, intimidation, and even violence. Georgia has not been immune to that horrible reality.”

Jewish citizens “have experienced hate in the form of antisemitic flyers spread across neighborhoods, messages on social media calling for the death of Jews in Israel and around the world and even hateful gatherings outside synagogues,” Kemp added.

The legislation, which Kemp signed on Wednesday, had passed the state Senate 44-6 and the state House 129-5.

Kemp, who visited Israel for the first time last year, had said he would sign the bill because it “builds on our commitment to protect Georgians from criminal acts, including those based on hate.”

Only Jewish member of Georgia legislature gets antisemitic hatemail
The only Jewish member of Georgia’s legislature received a postcard about ”gassing the Jews” just hours before the signing of a new anti-semitism bill she sponsored.

Esther Panitch discovered the postcard in her mailbox on Wednesday morning shortly before Governor Brian Kemp signed the bill into law.

Panitch, 52, said she had given the postcard to police for investigation.

“It’s unnerving. Everyone should be able to feel safe at home,” she told Atlanta News First.

“Somebody invaded my home. This has my name and my address on it. It was put through the mail. So this was obviously intended for me to see.”

The bill added to the state code a reference to the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s definition of anti-semitism.

After the bill passed, Panitch said she felt “overwhelmed.”

“I’ve got lots of emotions going on at the same time,” the Democrat said.

“There are 150,000 Jews in Georgia that now feel like they have been seen, and heard, and acknowledged and protected.”

The bill was criticised by some politicians and activists who said it could be used to censor free speech and criticism of israel.
Mohammed Said Othman gets three-year sentence for assaulting Jewish man
All four men who beat Joseph Borgen on May 20, 2021, during a rally associated with Israel’s 11-day conflict with Hamas in the Gaza Strip, will spend time in prison for their crime.

Mohammed Said Othman, 29, received three years in prison on Jan. 31 for second-degree attempted gang assault and third-degree assault as a hate crime. Previous convictions for others included Mahmoud Musa, 25, the ringleader in the attack, who was sentenced to seven years after pleading guilty. Mohamed Othman, 26, received five years.

Waseem Awawdeh received the lightest sentence—six months—due to his joining the attack later on in the beating. While in jail he allegedly said, “If I could do it again, I would do it again” and “I have no problem doing it again.” Awadeh is scheduled for release in June.

Borgen suffered a concussion as a result of the beating nearly three years ago.

“These defendants violently targeted and assaulted another individual simply because he is Jewish,” said Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg. “These multi-year prison sentences make clear that physically attacking someone because of their religion is never acceptable.”

Following the announcement of the sentence, Borgen, who was 29 at the time of the attack, spoke out about current pro-Hamas protests in the city as a result of the war following the Oct. 7 terrorist attacks on Israel, saying “I got texts from my friends the other night … that protesters were marching on the Upper East Side and took over 87th and Second, and were standing for 20 minutes. … Why aren’t they being arrested? They’re breaking the law openly.”
First-ever Indigenous People Embassy in Jerusalem is the 100th embassy opened
A first-ever “Indigenous Embassy” was launched in Jerusalem on Thursday night at an event attended by ambassadors from around the world. It is the 100th embassy to open in the State of Israel.

The World Bank defines indigenous people as “distinct social and cultural groups that share collective ancestral ties to the lands and natural resources where they live, occupy or from which they have been displaced.”

According to Amnesty International, 476 million indigenous people are living in more than 90 countries. They belong to more than 5,000 different indigenous peoples. They make up 5% of the world’s population.

Embassy has support from global indigenous leaders
The Jerusalem embassy has support from indigenous leaders from all around the world, including Singapore, Taiwan, Samoa, American Samoa, Hawaii, Tahiti, New Caledonia, Solomon Islands, Australia, Papua New Guinea, Cook Islands, Tonga, Fiji, Native American chiefs and paramount chiefs from Southern Africa.

Attendees came from many of these countries, including several tribal chiefs, a princess, and a king. Many wore traditional garb.

The embassy, a project of the Indigenous Coalition For Israel (ICFI), will be located on the Friends of Zion campus. Jerusalem Deputy Mayor Fleur Hassan-Nahoum spearheaded it. More than 200 people attended the opening.

“We are grateful to the ICFI leadership for pursuing this initiative, especially during a time of war,” Hassan-Nahoum said. “The Jewish people are the indigenous people of Israel, and so we are thrilled with the support of the global First Peoples community.”
Iran Calls For Halt To Relocation Of Ancient Babylonian Artifact To Israel
Iranian authorities have issued a plea to halt the planned transfer of a 6th century Babylonian artifact from the British Museum to Jerusalem citing safety concerns amidst the war.

The artifact in question is a fragment of a 2,600-year-old object from ancient Babylonian territory, now situated in modern-day Iraq, adorned with inscriptions in cuneiform on its clay surface. It serves as a primary historical document depicting the establishment of Persian rule and records the edict of Persian King Cyrus, granting freedom to slaves to return to their native lands.

Expressing apprehension about the proposed relocation to the National Library of Israel in Jerusalem, Hadi Mirzaei, Iran’s director-general of the General Office of Museums, conveyed his concerns in letters addressed to key officials including Amir-Hossein Gharibnejad, the vice president for cultural cooperation at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Ali-Akbar Mottakan, the secretary-general of the National Commission for UNESCO-Iran, as reported by the Tehran Times in mid-January.

In a letter published via the Iranian news agency Mehr, Mirzaei emphasized the potential risks associated with the impending transfer, deeming it "inappropriate", the regime desperate the artifact does not end up in the hands of its archenemy, Israel.

Iran, celebrated for its ancient cultural heritage spanning millennia, has encountered numerous hurdles in safeguarding and conserving its artifacts.

Since the Islamic Revolution in 1979, the Iranian government has shifted its focus to promoting Islamic culture and values, sometimes adopting a more conservative approach towards pre-Islamic relics.

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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

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


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