Noah Rothman: The Conscious Act of Forgetting
Trayon White, the Washington D.C. councilman who earned national scorn last month when he blamed this winter’s persistent snow on the work of a shadowy cabal of Jewish conspirators, is trying to broaden his perspective. His unpublicized attempts at penance have included attending a Passover seder, meeting with local Jewish leaders, and making a sojourn to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum. That last bit went about as well as you might expect.
“Are they protecting her?” White asked his tour guide. He was referring to a 1935 photograph that shows a woman being paraded through the streets by uniformed Sturmabteilung. Around the woman’s neck was a sign that read, “I am a German girl and allowed myself to be defiled by a Jew.” White adhered to his interpretation even after it was explained to him that this was an effort to dehumanize Jews and stigmatize associations with them.
Discomfited by the experience, White apparently snuck out of the tour early. The staffers he left behind were, however, no better educated about one of the 20th Century’s greatest crimes than their boss. When they were confronted by imagery of and a lecture on the Warsaw ghetto—one of many walled enclaves into which Jews were packed and denied food and medicine before they were all eventually sent to the death camps—they seemed perplexed. One asked if this was the Nazi version of a “gated community.”
Though it remains unclear if these experiences convinced White to abandon his prejudices, he did tell reporters that he was grateful to have met a lot of “good Jews.”
As the 20th century’s horrors fade from living memory, columnists and commentators have settled on the word “forgetting” to describe the powerful way in which nostalgia cleanses the memory of trauma. Increasingly, the atrocities of that period and the mock science that justified them exist only on grainy, black-and-white celluloid. But to call it a “forgetting” implies passivity. In White’s case, forgetting appears to be a choice, which isn’t forgetting at all. It’s more like banishment.
Unfortunately, Councilman White—who, at age 33, is representative of a generation with almost no memory of the great ideological struggles of the last century—is in voluminous company. According to the Claims Conference, 40 percent of White’s fellow Millennials could not name a single Nazi extermination camp and 41 percent think the number of Jews who died in the Holocaust has been wildly exaggerated. This is disturbing, in part, because it is the result of a conscious effort.
Seth Frantzman: Why the blind spot to antisemitism?
Mallory, Karega and White are depicted as simply ignorant or in need of a bit of outreach to “educate” them on the issues. But what about Valerie Plame, the former CIA operative who shared an article titled “America’s Jews are driving America’s wars.” She initially defended sharing the article, which she claimed was “provocative and thoughtful.” The blind spot on antisemitism reared its head again.
The blind spot misses the forest for the trees. According to those suffering from this blind spot, all these examples are just individuals, and most of them just made a mistake, a bad choice of words, and an invitation to a Passover dinner will sort it all out. People don’t suddenly wake up in the morning and think the Rothschilds run the World Bank or that Jews “drive” America’s wars. No one wakes up in the morning and suddenly thinks that one wealthy Jewish family is responsible for depopulating the world with AIDs.
No. People are led to think such things through years of conditioning and being in circles where everyone talks this way. No one becomes a racist overnight. They become a racist by being exposed to racism, learning it through relatives, friends, family, at religious events and social events.
Those confronting antisemitism have not done a good job of exploring how it festers. How about a survey to see how many people believe that “the Rothschilds” are responsible for all the ills in society? How about a survey asking whether people think “the Jews” are responsible for America’s wars? Maybe some voices don’t want to ask direct questions about antisemitism because it might reveal a troubling fact, namely that it is growing and is already worse than it was 10 years ago, worse than it was 50 years ago and that it is bubbling up in influential, educated circles, to the extent that professors, politicians, civil servants, religious leaders and major leaders of social movements openly hold antisemitic views.
Commentary Magazine Podcast: Israel: The Miracle at 70
On this podcast, we explain why, for the state of Israel, these are the very best of times, even though American Jews and those who hate Israel seem to believe otherwise to the exclusion of all available evidence. Then we talk about what Sohrab Ahmari dubs the North Korea “somewhat” and Mike Pompeo’s nomination. With a guest appearance by Skeletor.
In a precise, no-nonsense fashion, retired British Colonel Richard Kemp speaks with Eve about the “RE-creation” of the Jewish state in it’s Homeland.
Their discussion covers the Israel Defense Forces’ extreme morality, the tremendous benefits that Israeli military intelligence and civilian advances provide the world, Israel’s patchy relationship with his own country and his personal experience with Israelis. Colonel Kemp’s insights include how Judaism’s inherent decency and antipathy to violence is a larger influence on Israeli society than usually recognized, and he reiterates -from his vast experience in the region -that Israel is at the forefront of battling the Islamic threat to the entire West and Iran’s reshaping of the Middle East. A true friend of mankind, he shed no tears at yesterday’s death of the Hamas engineer of terrorism. His clarity and moral integrity are a breath of fresh air in a world that sometimes seems to have lost its way. For Eve, this interview was a very real honor.
Melanie Phillips: NATALIE PORTMAN, KIM JONG-UN, RUDY GIULIANI
Please join me here as I discuss with Avi Abelow of Israel Unwired Natalie Portman’s behaviour over Israel’s Genesis Prize, developments in the North Korea crisis and the implications of Rudy Giuliani joining President Trump’s legal team.
Representatives of actress Natalie Portman, when initially writing to the Genesis Prize Foundation to indicate she would not come to Israel to accept the prize, explicitly stated concerns about violence in Gaza and the Israeli government’s activities, but made no mention of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, a TV report said Monday, quoting excerpts from what it said were the exchanges.
The Jerusalem-born Portman subsequently confirmed that she was refusing to attend the ceremony, but said her reasons had been “mischaracterized by others,” and that she had chosen not to attend because she did not want to be seen to be endorsing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, a scheduled speaker at the awards ceremony.
“We have followed the recent news from Gaza with growing worry, and we are concerned that it is not appropriate to hold a ceremony given the government’s actions and the latest escalation,” said an excerpt of the note from Portman’s representatives, dated April 2, that was quoted in a Hebrew translation Monday by Hadashot news, which did not provide the original English text.
The foundation, in a response also quoted by Hadashot TV and also dated April 2, said it was not prepared to consider canceling the event: “We have no plans to discuss this. The events in Gaza are the result of a planned action by Hamas designed to sacrifice civilians for political gain,” it said, again, according to the TV channel’s Hebrew translation. “Canceling the award ceremony of the most prestigious Jewish prize in the world would play into the hands of Hamas and would be a slap in the face of the people of Israel.”
It was only more than two weeks later, on April 18, that the Genesis Foundation made public what it said was Portman’s position, stating that a representative of the actress notified it that “[r]ecent events in Israel have been extremely distressing to her and she does not feel comfortable participating in any public events in Israel,” and that “she cannot in good conscience move forward with the ceremony.”
Portman’s behavior isn’t surprising. She has been railing against Israel for the past three years in precisely the manner that she assaulted it last week.
On the one hand, she viciously attacks the country on political grounds. On the other hand, she says she doesn’t want her political attacks to be politicized.
Which brings us to the real problem with the entire episode. Given her savage criticism of Israel, spanning years, Portman should never have received the Genesis Prize in the first place. The fact that she did, and the fact that neither the Genesis Prize foundation nor the American Jewish leadership has yet condemned her since she betrayed her word so viciously, is a testament to the political stupidity of American Jewish leadership.
And this is the real problem. The American Jewish community’s insistent embrace of people who reject its values and interests in favor of its liberal political identity is rapidly undoing it. Multi-year survey data make clear that Jewish Americans are among the most liberal groups in the U.S. Naturally, as liberals, they want to be embraced by the group with which they identify most strongly – the Left. Unfortunately for them, the Left is becoming less and less hospitable to Jews.
Recognizing the shift in her camp, for at least three years, Portman has played a transparently phony double game. To maintain her relevance on the increasingly anti-Jewish left, Portman has signaled her hatred of Israel by slandering Netanyahu, the most popular leader in Israeli history as a racist.
On the other hand, to avoid losing her pride of place in the American Jewish community, every time Portman demonizes Netanyahu – and through him, Israelis society as a whole — she adds a disclaimer that she doesn’t support BDS.
If American Jewish leaders were interested in defending their values and interests, they would have called her on this stunt when she first tried it in 2015. Instead, they gave her the “Jewish Nobel Prize.”
And now Israel is reaping what they sowed.
Shlomo Toren: So Natalie Portman is acting out? Let her
Catching us between Independence Day and preparations for the coming Shabbat/Friday Gaza riots, Natalie Portman’s announcement that she would not be coming to Israel to receive the Genesis Prize came as a bit of a surprise. What is the Genesis Prize?
I know, through the media, who Natalie Portman is, but I really didn’t know much about the Genesis Prize. A little research brings up an informative write up by the New York Times about a fund set up by Russian Jewish billionaires, managed by the Jewish Agency and in cooperation with the Israeli government. The fund was set up to be apolitical and the previous recipients couldn’t be accused of being tilted towards Prime Minister Netanyahu. So what was Portman’s complaint?
‘I didn’t want to appear to endorse Netanyahu’ Portman stated.
Israel was created exactly 70 years ago as a haven for refugees from the Holocaust. But the mistreatment of those suffering from today’s atrocities is simply not in line with my Jewish values. Because I care about Israel, I must stand up against violence, corruption, inequality, and abuse of power.”
This, to be expected, raised more than a few hackles of the Right and caused general satisfaction in the Left in Israel. The Likud Party was scathing in denouncing the “boycott”, with some going into the melodramatic. Cue Miri Regev and Oren Hazan.
In his comments Sunday, [Energy and Water Minister Yuval] Steinitz claimed that “to boycott a ceremony in the State of Israel because the prime minister is supposed to take part — is boycotting Israel.”
“Netanyahu is the prime minister of Israel, whether you agree with him or not,” he said.
“If Natalie Portman had come to Israel and not boycotted the state or the ceremony, and had given an interview in which she criticized the government, the state, the prime minister, [that would have been] legitimate,” he said.
“If she had come and said she is in favor of peace, and a Palestinian state would be the most friendly and would never threaten us with missiles or terror, that’s her right. I would argue with her. Then, Barghouti would not exploit it. But the fact that the greatest haters of Israel jumped for joy over her announcement that she’s not coming — and it’s something that could have been foreseen — the fact that either she doesn’t care or she didn’t take it into account deserves full condemnation.”
Steinitz was referring to Omar Barghouti, the founder of the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions movement, who following the news that Portman was skipping the ceremony told The New York Times: “This latest rebuff to Israeli cultural events and accolades, coming from an Israeli-American superstar, is arguably one of the strongest indicators yet of how toxic the Israel Brand has become, even in some liberal circles in Hollywood.
“I can sense our South Africa moment coming closer.”
Natalie Portman can give one reason or another for her act of boycott, she can make the subtlest of distinctions that will differentiate her from the rest of the entities that operate against Israel, but in the end, her decision to boycott the Genesis Prize ceremony is seen here as part of the cloud of hostility that hangs over the country – and since when, actually? These past 70 years? Ms. Neta-Li Hershlag, who Anglicized her name to Natalie Portman thanks to a name from her mother’s side, won’t escape that cloud.
We shouldn’t delude ourselves. Portman is a personality under direction. As a major Hollywood star, she is surrounded by agents and managers. She also has her own independent, original thoughts, which she computes as part of her management software.
The Natalie Portman firm concluded that her participation in a public ceremony in Israel, and being photographed at said ceremony with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, would hurt the Portman brand more than a nonappearance, along with political messages against the government of Israel, would. Omar Barghouti has already co-opted Portman’s statements for the BDS movement. He’s right. He is managing to poison the Israel brand in many circles.
Portman is not some minor personality. She represents the broad spectrum of liberal American Jewry. Every Jewish personality identified with liberal American finds some way to express their opposition to Israel, without of course denying Israel’s right to exist.
Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling said on Wednesday that it was time for non-Jews to start standing up to anti-Semitism.
In a series of tweets, Rowling expressed solidarity with British Jews, rejecting semantic arguments of anti-Semites.
“Most UK Jews in my timeline are currently having to field this kind of crap, so perhaps some of us non-Jews should start shouldering the burden,” she wrote in response to a tweet saying, “Because Judaism is a religion and not a race.”
Rowling continued, saying, “Antisemites thinks this is a clever argument, so tell us, do: were atheist Jews exempted from wearing the yellow star?”
The best-selling author, who has over 14 million followers on Twitter, said she was “so sorry” to hear examples of anti-Semitism and replied to a Jewish mother who wrote that her children experience it at school, “Know that you aren’t alone and that a lot of us stand with you.”
Somewhere in his latest book, British novelist Martin Amis writes about America that it is more like a world than a country. I take it then, that diverse as we are, we act like one big family so tight that we don’t much care what they are doing, say, in Britain. Let them play cricket. We’ll stick to baseball …and please keep your anti-Semitism to yourselves.
By way of saying Jeremy Corbyn, Leader of Britain’s Labour Party, or as some would say, leader of Her Majesty’s Opposition.
Or…as others have it – Jeremy Corbyn, the face of British anti-Semitism.
But what do we know. We’ve got our own problems, our own political squabbles and our own anti-Semites.
Around here we don’t call them Labor or Labour. We call them Democrats. Pew says 27 percent support Israel. (It’s 80 percent among Republicans.)
That’s a lousy number, and it is not how it used to be. The shift began somewhere in the 1970s when the Palestinian Arabs postured themselves as freedom fighters. As when they tossed Leon Klinghoffer overboard in his wheelchair and slaughtered unarmed Israeli Olympians in Munich.
At about that time, Liberals here in the USA and there in the UK, turned their backs to their Labor brothers in Israel and began to sympathize with the “Palestinian cause.”
Jeremy Corbyn’s roundtable on relations between the Jewish community and Labour has been postponed, Jewish News has learnt.
The Labour leader invited numerous community groups for a ‘Respect and Engagement’ event on 25 April, just 24 hours after talks are scheduled between Corbyn, the Board and JLC.
Invitees to the meeting were urged to “contribute to a fruitful and constructive discussion on moving forward”.
But the Board and JLC said they could “see no reason” to go so soon after the main meeting, urging others to follow suit. The CST, Liberal Judaism, Masorti Judaism and UJS were among those to do so.
Concerns were raised after it became apparent an invite had also been extended to Jewish Voice for Labour, a group which has long questioned whether claims of anti-Semitism in the party are exaggerated and led a counter-demo against the Enough is Enough rally in Parliament Square.
A professor at Knox College in Illinois has been accused of antisemitism for a history of online posts targeting Jews and Israel, prompting an investigation by the school’s administration and a hate mail attack on a Jewish faculty member.
Kwame Zulu Shabazz, a visiting assistant professor of Africana Studies, first came under scrutiny earlier this month, after the school’s Hillel campus group learned that he had promoted “some questionable opinions about Jewish people.”
These include a September 2015 tweet claiming that “whites/Jews control commercial hip hop” — a sentiment Shabazz shared weeks beforehand, when he responded to a critique of the influential hip hop album Straight Outta Compton by writing, “Jews pulling the strings for profit.”
Shabazz has expressed support for Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan — who previously blamed “Satanic Jews” for the 9/11 attacks and trans-Atlantic slave trade — and said in January that he shows an interview with Farrakhan “in most of my courses.”
The professor, who started teaching at Knox in 2015, has also taken a critical view of the Jewish religion, alleging in June that the “brutal” God of the Hebrew Bible “commanded the so-called ‘Chosen People’ (Jews) to wipe out *every* living thing.”
Shabazz tweeted in February 2017 that “the Jews act like Nazis,” a theme he revisited after his social media activity was exposed to the campus community.
How Stephen Walt became the new foreign policy gatekeeper for the right
In 2014, Massachusetts Institute of Technology political scientist Barry Posen learned he had fans in unexpected places. Officials at the Charles Koch Institute, a policy arm of the eponymous industrialist and deep-pocketed libertarian political donor, had read Posen’s recently released Restraint: A New Foundation for U.S. Grand Strategy. As the title suggests, the book charts a less aggressive and more “strategic” U.S. stance abroad. “I got a call from the Institute saying ‘Gee, there are people here who really like your book, they’re trying to get into foreign policy and do different things,’” Posen recalled. “ ‘Can we sponsor a book event for you?’ ”
Posen now co-directs the Charles Koch Foundation-funded Grand Strategy, Security, and Statecraft Fellows Program, a joint Harvard-MIT initiative announced this past November to be led by Posen and his Harvard counterpart, The Israel Lobby co-author Stephen Walt. The program will allow graduate and post-doctoral fellows to spend a year each at Harvard and MIT, giving Posen and Walt the ability to select future members of the foreign policy elite. Posen says that he generally disagrees with much of the Koch brothers’ right-wing political activities. But he is more than willing to accept their help—the project on Grand Strategy is now receiving $3.7 million in Koch money over five years.
“We agree on this one thing,” Posen said of his reasons for accepting support from the project’s sole outside funders. “And given that we agree on this one thing and we often hear people pleading for more bipartisanship, it seemed to me: Why are you hesitating given that this seems to be a case where people of generally different political predispositions can come together in a particular area and work together on something they care about, something they all think is good for the United States?”
There are so many Jewish women who want to engage with the Women’s March and build something better. There is so much we could do together if we could really be intersectional—but all of us have to fight our own biases and leave hatred at the door. That starts with you, Mallory, and with your colleagues at the top. It would take work to create spaces where dialogue could happen, but if we did it we could move mountains.
A truly intersectional feminist movement would be such an incredible and powerful place to be. We could facilitate conversations between communities in conflict with each other and be a safe space for female-led dialogue and grassroots peace-building, including the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, just like Parents Circle Families Forum, Haifa Women’s Coalition, and Mubarak Awad’s work with the Palestinian Centre for the Study of Nonviolence. We could actually talk to each other about our disagreements instead of closing our hearts and refusing to partner on issues that need our attention. We could fight hatred, white supremacy, and oppression in new and innovative ways, from community dialogue to the courts to Congress to the White House. We could learn so much from each other about the hatred and hardships we are facing—and we could roll up our sleeves and fight like hell for each other, and for all of the communities that are under attack in America right now. We could link arms in the fight against gun violence, which threatens all of our children. We could stand for motherhood in a society that is constantly attacking, belittling, impoverishing, and killing mothers—especially black ones.
There is still time. Otherwise the Women’s March movement will slowly bleed to death while we pitch our separate tents. I can’t sit in a tent with hatred and I cannot be quiet.
The BDS movement, which wages economic war against Israel via boycotts, divestment and sanctions, was founded by men committed to extinguishing the world’s only Jewish state. That is a fact.
By targeting the Jewish homeland for isolation for alleged human-rights abuses, while ignoring far more pervasive sins across the Arab and Muslim world, its logic is anti-Semitic. That is a fact.
And along the way, many people of good will have been duped into becoming unwitting followers in this virulent campaign. That is a fact.
The latest thus conned are the supposedly smart, overwhelmingly progressive young women of Barnard College. They voted 2-to-1 this week to ask their student government to urge the college to divest from eight companies that “profit from or engage in the State of Israel’s treatment of Palestinians.”
The innocent-sounding referendum was pushed by a campus BDS group called Columbia University Apartheid Divest, whose name disgustingly equates Israel with racist South Africa.
While it is more than fair game to criticize Israel, its leaders and its policies, it is beyond odious to cast as an aggressor a democracy that seeks to coexist with its neighbors and protect itself from hostile forces including Hamas and Hezbollah.
Thousands of Barnard College alumni have called on the New York school to reject a student referendum asking the administration to divest from eight companies doing business with Israel.
The petition was launched Thursday, hours after results were announced, showing nearly two-thirds of the student body voting in favor of the nonbinding ballot. The petition’s some 2,000 alumni signers, as well as two college trustees, say they are “deeply disappointed with the actions of the Barnard Student Government Association (SGA) regarding the recent divestment referendum.”
“By presenting a nuanced and complex issue as one sided and simple, it has biased the student body and failed in its duty to act as a neutral arbiter,” it says.
The petition calls the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement targeting Israel “hateful.”
A campaign calling on the city of Cambridge, Massachusetts to not renew its contract with Hewlett Packard because of its business ties with Israel was dealt a setback, at least temporarily, when a group behind the proposed boycott failed to get its resolution placed on the City Council’s agenda for its next scheduled meeting.
Mass Against HP, or MAHP, a group that includes Jewish Voice for Peace Boston and Mass Peace Action, initiated a resolution to end municipal contracts with Hewlett Packard Incorporated and Hewlett Packard Enterprise for what it claims is the company’s role in human rights violations by providing technology used by Israel against Arabs, and in U.S. prisons and by U.S. Homeland security to track immigrants.
Their petition calls on municipalities to end contracts “until these companies fully and publicly terminate their corporate complicity in violence against and denial of equal rights to Palestine, immigrants, and people who are or have been incarcerated in U.S. prisons.“
As part of its campaign, the group met with city councilors and Mayor Marc McGovern to seek a sponsor for its resolution. That was expected to happen on April 23, as MAHP, on its website and Facebook page, called on its supporters to show up at the Council meeting to support the resolution.
But in the last week, as word of the resolution spread, three of the Boston area’s largest Jewish organizations, who were taken by surprise, responded with a coordinated campaign to oppose the boycott.
Senator Chuck Schumer’s office said the Democratic minority leader is too busy to meet with pro-Israel activists who support the nomination of Ken Marcus to lead the Department of Education’s office of civil rights.
Emails obtained by the Washington Free Beacon reveal that much like Democratic senators who have stonewalled Marcus’s nomination, Schumer’s office has delayed meeting with members of the grassroots organization Stop BDS on Campus.
Marcus’s nomination to be assistant secretary for civil rights has lingered in the Senate for six months. Marcus is the founder and president of the Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law, a nonprofit dedicated to advancing civil rights of the Jewish people.
Marcus’s nomination has been stonewalled amid reports that anti-Semitism has risen by 94 percent in U.S. schools. Last week, 51 student groups at New York University pledged to boycott Israel.
Marcus did not clear the Senate HELP committee until February, after resistance from Democrats. While weighing his nomination, a senior Democratic staffer to Sen. Patty Murray (D., Wash.) on the committee said, “We don’t care about anti-Semitism in this office.” Anti-Israel groups also adamantly oppose his nomination.
Political BDS Fails
Everyone Loves Israel Now
Perhaps the most surprising thing about the Arab world today is how relatively uncontroversial Israel has become. During 11 days of travel through Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, we heard the Israeli-Palestinian conflict mentioned only once. This is a dramatic shift from decades during which hostility to Israel served as perhaps the most important unifier of often fractious Arab governments.
But if the change is real, it’s also very easily misunderstood. At a conference held at Brandeis University’s Crown Center for Middle East Studies last year, an Arab colleague was asked, “When will Arab states finally accept Israel?” His concise, and accurate, response: “When they realize that they are better off with Israel there than had Israel not been there.”
If you look at the data, life keeps improving in the Palestinian territories.
Empirical data about life in Israel and the Palestinian territories has been compiled by distinguished Israeli journalist Ben-Dror Yemini and his recently translated 2014 book Industry of Lies shows just how ludicrous the genocide charge is.
Begin with life expectancy. At the end of the Six-Day War in 1967, when Israel took over the territories from Jordan, the average Palestinian in the West Bank and Gaza expected to live just 49 years, according to a U.N. report. In 1975, Palestinian life expectancy rose to 56; by 1984, it climbed to 66. Yemini notes that this is ?a rise of almost seventeen years in longevity within seventeen years of Israeli rule.? Since 1984, Palestinians have lived an average of 75 years. That?s not only higher than the global average, but longer than the life expectancy in many Arab and South American countries?and even in some European countries. Israeli Arabs, meanwhile, have the highest life expectancy in the Muslim world.
A newspaper in the Netherlands has come under fire for publishing a cartoon depicting an Israeli soldier shooting masses of Palestinians on the Gaza border in celebration of the Jewish state’s 70th Independence Day, which was marked on Thursday.
The cartoon, published in Volkskrant, a major Dutch paper, depicts an IDF soldier wearing sunglasses and adorned with a Star of David on his back. Having put a frightened-looking unarmed Palestinian against a wall, he fires a barrage of bullets to spell out “Happy birthday to me” — passing across the Palestinian’s chest along the way.
Bodies of what seems to be other protesters lie nearby, next to what could be seen as a pile of bodies of slaughtered demonstrators who participated in the weekly “March of Return” mass rallies organized by Hamas, the terror group which runs the Gaza Strip.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center on Monday slammed the cartoon as “outrageous” and anti-Semitic, saying it depicted Israel as a “murderous bully celebrating its 70th birthday by gunning down defenseless Palestinians at the Gaza border.” It denounced the fact that it did not criticize Hamas for its “cynical abuse of civilians.”
Footage emerged of the violent anti-Semitic attack on an ultra-Orthodox Jewish man who was severely beaten and choked while walking home from Shabbat services in New York.
In the video, the attacker jumps on the victim, 52-year-old Menachem Moskowitz, from behind in the Crown Heights neighborhood in Brooklyn, sending his hat and glasses flying into a nearby garden, beating him, pushing up against an iron fence and attempting to strangle him.
“I turned around and I see that he’s right behind me and he jumped me. And then he said ‘I hate Jews,’” Moskowitz told CBS late Sunday. “He put me in a headlock and I’m trying to maneuver out of him. In the meantime, I’m screaming ‘Help! Help! Help! Help!’ He says, ‘You don’t need help. I’m going to kill you right here.’”
Moskowitz sustained a cracked rib along with a black eye, swelling, bruising and scratches over his body.
“There’s fear. There’s a lot of fear. The thing we know is that, unfortunately, there are people out there who want to kill us for one reason — because we are Jews,” his wife, Channah Moskowitz, was quoted by CBS as saying,
A reward of $50,000 has been offered for information leading to the apprehension of a man who violently assaulted an ultra-Orthodox Jewish man while he was walking home from Shabbat services in New York City, according to a US assemblyman.
The New York State representative, Dov Hikind, did not name the “noted” philanthropist from Los Angeles who announced the reward.
Police have opened an investigation into the attack as an assault motivated by bias, after the victim, 52-year-old Menachem Moskowitz, said the assailant had told him he “hated Jews” and threatened to kill him.
“There’s one violent incident after another; one attack after another — always on innocent, vulnerable members of the Jewish community, and always with a racist, anti-Semitic message,” said Assemblyman Hikind, a Democrat from Brooklyn, in a statement.
Berlin-based star conductor Daniel Barenboim on Monday became the latest musician in Germany to return in protest his past Echo Music Awards in a row over anti-Semitic rap lyrics.
Outrage has grown after the prize was handed this month to rap duo Kollegah and Farid Bang, who in their song “0815” say their bodies are “more defined than an Auschwitz prisoner.”
Barenboim, 75, said in a statement that the rappers’ lyrics are “clearly anti-Semitic, misogynist, homophobic and contemptuous of human dignity.”
They constituted an “abuse” of free expression which society must “never tolerate,” wrote the Jewish general music director of the Berlin State Opera and the Staatskapelle Berlin.
Barenboim said he, the Staatskapelle Berlin and the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra had jointly decided to return the award because “decency and humanity” must outweigh “commercial interests.”
The two rappers this month won the Echo Music Award’s Hip-Hop/Urban prize after selling more than 200,000 copies of their album “Young, Brutal and Handsome 3.”
The award ceremony was held as Israel marked Yom HaShoah, its Holocaust Remembrance Day, dedicated to the six million Jews killed by the Nazis during World War II.
The Berlin Jewish community is organizing a demonstration against anti-Semitism in response to an attack on an Israeli man wearing a Jewish skullcap, and is urging participants to wear a kippah.
A broad coalition from interfaith, political, academic and pro-Israel circles is backing the “Berlin wears a kippah” protest set for Wednesday evening in front of the Jewish community center in the German capital.
On the same day, a similar demonstration is planned for Erfurt, the capital of the former East German state of Thuringia, organized by ACHAVA Festspiele Thüringen, a private cultural organization. The event will take place in the morning and conclude at the New Synagogue in the center of the historic city.
“If you can’t make it to Erfurt, then wear a kippah wherever you happen to be at that time,” the announcement said.
Last week, a young Syrian man assaulted his kippah-wearing victim with his belt and repeated the Arabic word for Jew, “Yahudi,” in public in the trendy Prenzlauer Berg neighborhood.
Israel, the country with the world’s 100th-largest population, signed the second-largest number of cybersecurity deals internationally, according to a report by New York data firm CB Insights.
First place went to the United States, with a massive 69 percent of all global deals between 2013 to 2017.
Israel fell far behind with just 7 percent, yet still managed to grab second place, ahead of the United Kingdom with 6 percent, Canada with 3 percent and China with 2 percent, according to the report.
The report selected 29 cybersecurity startup companies considered “high-momentum companies pioneering technology with the potential to transform cybersecurity,” with six of them coming from Israel.
The Israeli firms are:
BioCatch, a startup using behavioral and physiological parameters to detect and prevent fraud;
Aqua Security, which secures virtual container environments, and helps overlap DevOps and IT security;
IRONSCALES, a maker of anti-phishing technologies;
D-ID, which protects users’ faces from unauthorized, automated face-recognition technologies;
Minerva Labs, which fights malware;
Cylus, which helps railway companies detect and prevent cyber-attacks in their operational network.
Last year, only three Israeli companies were mentioned in the CB insights cybersecurity report.
Buying a ticket to the Backstreet Boys is a two-for-one deal. You’re not just paying for the performance; you’ve also just snagged yourself a ticket down memory lane.
During Sunday night’s show at Rishon LeZion’s Live Park, the Boys knew that when we sang along to every note and lyric it wasn’t just because we love them (we do!), but also because we harbor a bittersweet longing for yesteryear, when they were the soundtrack to our lives.
So was the case for the largely 30-something crowd of (mostly) women, who happily waved signs celebrating the Boys’ 25th Anniversary and danced along to songs that defined the 90s.
The Boys – Nick Carter, Brian Littrell, Kevin Richardson, A.J. Mclean and Howie Dorough – of course, knew very well the emotions they elicited from the crowd and milked it for all it was worth.
“We are celebrating 25 years,” Backstreet Boy AJ McLean said. “We are going to walk you through the memory lane of music. We want you to be loud, scream, dance and have a great time tonight!”
The Boys also scored points for their sheer love for Israel. After cancelling their first performance in the country in 2014 due to Operation Protective Edge, they made good on their promise and arrived for a rescheduled first appearance a year later.
Israel’s shores are beckoning for supermodels, it seems. Just a few days after Kate Upton took in the sun on the beach in Tel Aviv, Karlie Kloss is touring Jerusalem and visiting the sites.
Kloss, a runway model who became best known for her work for Victoria’s Secret, is in Israel with her boyfriend, Joshua Kushner.
Yes, of that Kushner family. Joshua is the younger brother of Jared Kushner, the son-in-law of US President Donald Trump and a senior advisor in the White House.
Joshua is believed to have decidedly different politics from his brother, though he keeps much quieter. In April 2017, he told Forbes Magazine that “It is no secret that liberal values have guided my life” but that he still speaks to his brother Jared every day.
And while Jared is expected to arrive in Israel next month for the inauguration of the new US Embassy in Jerusalem, Joshua, 32, and Kloss, 25, have been touring the sites this week.
On Sunday, Kloss posted a photo of a view from the Dead Sea.
A post shared by Karlie Kloss (@karliekloss) on Apr 22, 2018 at 12:58pm PDT
Looking back at 70 years of the IDF pic.twitter.com/lR1sg8OyL5
— IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) April 22, 2018
Thank you to all our friends around the world who illuminated buildings in blue and white in honor of Israel’s Independence Day: Chicago, Providence, Boston, Maastricht, São Paulo, and many other places. The people of Israel appreciate your support! pic.twitter.com/vyHDSGr5Ts
— Benjamin Netanyahu (@netanyahu) April 22, 2018
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