Can We Talk About Rape In The Holocaust Yet?
They used to tell young Orthodox Jewish girls a story – they may still – about 93 Bais Yaakov girls who were selected by the Nazis to be their sex slaves and put in an apartment full of beds. And when the Nazis arrived to claim their plunder, they found 93 corpses. 93 Bais Yaakov girls had chosen death rather than sexual violation; their teacher had provided them with cyanide.
The story isn’t true; some enterprising academics cast doubt on the letter on which it’s based. And yet this macabre myth, which so eloquently clothed the Holocaust in a “seductive aura of female martyrdom,” as Berkeley professor of Jewish culture Naomi Seidman put it, is the closest anyone ever came to speaking of rape in the Holocaust when I was growing up.
It wasn’t just me. Women’s experiences have been never been part of the Holocaust narrative. Rape during the Holocaust in particular has had about it the flavor of a taboo. And it’s this state of affairs that a revolutionary, international art exhibition called “VIOLATED: Women in Holocaust and Genocide” at the Ronald Feldman Galley seeks to ameliorate.
Tenage girls from Sosnowiec, Poland, before they were rounded up and sent to women’s camps.
VIOLATED contains 47 pieces of art from 30 different artists, all depicting sexual violence during the Holocaust or in later genocides and ethnic cleansings in Bosnia, Darfur, Eritrea, Guatemala, Iraq, Nigeria, and Rwanda. The exhibit also includes two works of art created in Nazi concentration camps during the war.
The first, by Zeev Porath, was drawn secretly while he was a slave laborer. His workshop overlooked a women’s camp, and the ink on paper drawing depicts the women he observed there in three stages: lined up, naked; in a pile, dead; and, in relief in the front, one woman is being tortured by a Nazi guard.
Michael Lumish: Why are we so accepting of Islamic Jew-Hatred in the West?
The way that I have it figured is that the western-left generally views Arabs and Muslims as mere victims who have little in the way of actual agency and, thus, little in the way of actual responsibility for their words or behavior.
This despite the fact that they represent 1.5 billion people.
Western champaign socialists consider Arabs and Muslims pastoral victims of the violent, militaristic, “white” western, industrial techno-patriarchy.
And what that means in the fragile and guilt-ridden Euro imagination, is that any infraction of normal human decency – even when it is directed a sub-minority like Kurds or Yazidis or Copts or Jews – is to be indulged.
Islam represents the most succesful and vicious imperial exercise in human history, yet pussitudenous people of Euro descent have to scratch their navels and ponder their sins as Yazidis are buried alive in mass graves and Coptic churches are burned to the ground in Egypt and the Jews are under never-ending harassment by their malicious neighbors.
[note there are 13 pages to the article]
It dawned on me that Israeli PR caters to the lowest common denominator. It tries to cater to everybody to such an extent that it dilutes its message and turns out superficial and flimsy. It also completely avoids the more difficult issues, causing them to appear as if they have something to hide.
I realized that we can complain about Israeli PR all we want, that won’t fix it. Offering solutions will.
I decided to go on a hunt for solutions, to ask all kinds of experts – politicians, authors, thought leaders, marketing executives, journalists, and more – across the political spectrum, encompassing Jews, non-Jews, not only what they think is dafka wrong with our PR (if anything) but how they feel we can best fix it. Some said things similar to me, others were a direct contradiction. Could all of us be right, or none of us, or is the truth somewhere in the middle?
11 Elder of Ziyon, blogger, Elder of Ziyon Blog
“The main problem with hasbara is that it is not personal. We defend Israel with facts and figures, but what sways opinions is stories, with people that they can relate to. We of course must back up what we say with facts, but we need to emphasize the human aspect of Israel’s story, and how much Israelis have in common with (say) Americans or Europeans. The other side is doing this very well.”
So what can we conclude from all this? There appear to be a few common threads:
1. Be pro-active instead of reactive.
2. We should put on a united front against the haters and curb the infighting.
3. We need to stop apologizing being polite and start exposing the BS that is in BDS and stop giving their narrative any legitimacy.
4. Go beyond the Jewish tent and seek out non-Jewish audiences.
5. Be strong in your convictions, and confident instead of apologetic, even if you do feel bad about the innocent Palestinians in the middle of all this.
6. Don’t sink to their level.
The Zionist Organization of America is urging a survivor of the Parkland school shooting to change the title of his forthcoming book, saying that by using the term “Never Again” author David Hogg “trivializes the horrors of the Holocaust.”
Hogg, 18, who has emerged as one of the most vocal proponents of gun control in the wake of the deaths of 17 classmates and teachers in February, has a forthcoming book titled “#NeverAgain: A New Generation Draws the Line.”
Morton A. Klein, president of the ZOA, said in a statement Tuesday that Hogg is “co-opting and politicizing” a term closely associated with Holocaust remembrance.
“This inappropriate title displays an unkind and shocking insensitivity to Holocaust survivors, Jews, and all decent, human-rights-loving people around the world,” wrote Klein, who identifies himself as a child of Holocaust survivors in the statement. “Any attempts to compare the genocide of the Holocaust to modern domestic political issues in the US today is shameful and wrong.”
The radical left-wing organization B’Tselem today distributed a new video showing IDF soldiers expressing joy after shooting at Arabs from the village of Madama who rioted and threw stones at security forces in Samaria.
Yitzhar residents said the riot began after the IDF erected a checkpoint at the entrance to the village following the throwing of two Molotov Cocktails a week and a half ago at the vehicle of an Israeli family.
The town of Yitzhar asked where the B’Tselem film crews were when the Jewish family was attacked. “The rough editing of the video that B’Tselem distributes against IDF soldiers illustrates the expression of the Pallywood industry. which reflects propaganda and not reality. The reality is that residents of the village of Madama tried to burn a Jewish family from Yitzhar who were riding in a car with Molotov Cocktails. Does B’Tselem support terrorism?”
JVP’s director, Rebecca Vilkomerson, has also consistently expressed her support of Mallory and Sarsour, whom she has called a “passionate and compelling, very smart, committed and an impressive person.” And like them, she has accused the ADL of “anti-Muslim advocacy” and “profound insensitivity toward Black [sic] communities” – an allegation likely to surprise the NAACP, which has worked closely with the ADL for decades.
Sadly, despite this conspicuous lapse in genuine support for human rights and equality, and despite the loud anti-Semitic activism, the rest of the Women’s March team has stayed silent even as a petition circulates demanding Sarsour and Mallory resign from the board. The petition also seeks the resignation of Carmen Perez, another board member with ties to Farrakhan. “I want the Women’s March to survive and succeed,” petition author and Brooklyn, N.Y. photographer Tali Goldsheft, told Haaretz, “… [but] if these three women can attend Farrakhan’s rallies and cheer him on, they shouldn’t be leading a social justice movement.”
This is precisely the point. And it is the problem that now plagues so many who have cheered the Women’s March as a movement. Moreover, in leading the project, all three of these women have tricked supporters into giving them credibility and legitimacy when they in fact have none.
Through such insidious maneuvers, Sarsour and Farrakhan, like the Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and others, have pulled a page from the radical Islam handbook. It is the same page followed, too, by Hamas, which has garnered international recognition and even support through its social welfare efforts even while it functions as a terrorist organization.
Such trickery has no place in the Women’s March campaign. Neither do the echoes of radical Islamist Jew-hate and divisiveness. For the hundreds of thousands who marched, and the millions who supported the movement with their wallets and their hearts, the actions and words of Sarsour, Mallory, and Perez have come as a betrayal. We may continue to follow the movement. But we will not follow their leaders.
JVP is clearly the Women’s March’s idea of a good Jewish group since it opposes Israel’s existence (it endorses the Palestinian “right of return” and opposes Birthright Israel trips for Jewish youth). It also promoted a campaign that blasts Jewish organizations for promoting security cooperation between American and Israeli police. (The results of which can be seen this week in a city council vote in Durham, N.C., which banned local police from training with Israeli law enforcement.) In doing so, it engaged in what can only be described as an anti-Semitic blood libel, seeking to blame Jews for police shootings of African-Americans.
Yet the problem here isn’t so much the outrageous statements of Mallory and Sarsour, and their vile allies in the JVP. It’s that many otherwise well-meaning Americans haven’t drawn the proper conclusions and cut ties with the Women’s March.
For many on the Jewish left, antipathy to Trump is the only thing that matters. While they may find Mallory and Sarsour distasteful, they believe that building a coalition with them is the priority right now. Yet treating the Women’s March as kosher despite its affinity for anti-Semites is neither reasonable nor good politics.
The time has come for all decent Americans to tell the Women’s March to either get rid of their anti-Semitic leaders or be subjected to their own boycott. At this point, anyone who chooses to work with Mallory and Sarsour is sanctioning Jew-hatred. No political cause—not even the liberal crusade against Trump—can possibly be worth that.
B’nai Brith’s annual report on anti-Semitism in Canada, released Tuesday, touched upon what has been, in my view, the major transformation of Jew hatred in Canada since the Second World War.
That is that today, the threat comes as much — if not more — from the extreme left, aided and abetted by so-called progressive politicians who pander to Jew-haters in their opportunistic search for votes, as from the extreme right, where so-called conservative politicians historically pandered to neo-Nazis and white supremacists for the same reason.
The difference is that today, while our governments, universities, media and police have relatively little problem condemning Jew hatred by such groups as neo-Nazis and white supremacists in the so-called alt-right, they do not condemn with equal force the same hatred when it comes from such groups as Islamist extremists and Arab nationalists in the so-called alt-left.
As an example, consider the speed, moral force and unanimity with which the Canadian intelligentsia rightly condemned Jew hatred by neo-Nazis and white supremacists in Charlottesville, Va., last August, where an act of terrorism led to the death of a human rights protester.
Now compare that to their chronic timidity, reluctance and hesitation to condemn Islamist terrorism in the same way.
NFL draft prospect Josh Rosen recently said he has heard a lot of anti-Semitic slurs used against him by opponents so far in his career.
“I get a lot of Jewish things,” the former UCLA quarterback said about trash talk, per Michael Silver of NFL.com. “My nose, particularly. I get, like, ‘Stay the f–k down, you Jewish bastard … I’m gonna break your f–king nose, you Jew.'”
Rosen, who is usually not afraid to speak his mind, said the taunts don’t bother him.
“I really like when people try to get in my head,” he added. “I like away games more than home games. I like silencing crowds; that’s a big thing.”
The quarterback’s personality has been under a microscope through the draft process, and his identity and religious affiliation have surprisingly also been a topic of conversation.
In an interview with Sam Alipour of ESPN The Magazine, Rosen explained that while he’s Jewish, he also went to Catholic school and attended Mass every Sunday but now considers himself agnostic.
“It’d be naive to think you’re just born into the right religion that will get you into heaven. My opinion will evolve and grow,” he explained. “… Don’t tell me how to live my life, but I’d love to hear about how you live yours.” (h/t Predictor92)
Politicians Preoccupied with Islamophobia
Chancellor Angela Merkel in Germany and President Emmanuel Macron in France regularly condemn anti-Semitic attacks in their respective countries. These reproofs have become frequent in Europe. Each time an anti-Semitic attack receives media attention, politicians rush to condemn it. But verbal condemnations alone change nothing. Anti-Semitism just gets bigger.
Worse, all plans, measures and laws go the same way: to protect anti-Semites. In Berlin, in December, 2017, Israeli flags were burned at the Brandenburg Gate after US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. In response to chants of “Israel, murderer of children”, the local police explained that flag-burning is protected by freedom of speech laws. In France, in 2017, a prosecutor appealed the acquittal of Georges Bensoussan, a prominent French scholar charged with being a “racist” for having publicly said that “in Muslim families, anti-Semitism is sucked with mother’s milk”.
The European Union has adopted anti-Israel policies out of fear of upsetting Muslims, but this fear has been fueling Muslim anti-Semitism. When European governments refuse to accept Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, and when they urge “restraint” instead of affirming that Israel has the right to defend itself, they are indulging in appeasement. On one side, they condemn anti-Semitism but on other, they are just whipping it up.
French Jewish MP Meyer Habib on Wednesday warned French Jews to be “cautious” when walking in public wearing a kippah (skullcap).
Speaking to Radio 101.5, Habib said, “I call on everyone to be cautious. There are children in the street, you can’t tell [them] ‘wear a kippah,’ because he might be killed.
When asked if those worried should remove their kippahs, Habib said, “Yes, definitely. You cannot walk in fear wearing a kippah. First of all, you must ‘choose life’ – that’s what it says in the Torah.”
Habib also noted that he himself has bodyguards, due to threats on his life.
Rapper Felix Blume, known by his stage name Kollegah, sparked controversy earlier this month with a song that contained the line: “My body is more defined than those of Auschwitz inmates.” That the line pops up rather abruptly in the song makes it stand out all the more, and has helped to fuel the media firestorm surrounding Blume and his colleague Farid Bang, with whom he recorded the track, titled “Jung Brutal Gutaussehend 3” (Young, Brutal, Good Looking 3).
It is not the first time Blume has made reference to Germany’s Nazi era in his music. His earlier music contains lyrics about the “final solution to the rapper question,” the SS and the Wehrmacht.
In their introduction to their anthology “Deutscher Gangsta-Rap,” sociologist Martin Seeliger and social psychologist Marc Dietrich write that a central characteristic of rap is the “presentation of hardness,” the “presentation elements of power fixation,” and “versions of hyper-masculinity.” Anti-Semitism does not necessarily have a history within the genre, but the sales figures of Kollegah’s album indicate that his fan base is still supportive of his work.
The organizers of Germany’s Echo Music Awards said Wednesday they would scrap their main annual prize due to a row over winners this year, a rap duo who have been slammed for anti-Semitic lyrics.
“The Echo brand is so badly damaged that a complete new beginning is necessary,” said Germany’s Music Industry Association, adding that the “Echo will be no more.”
A maelstrom of outrage has erupted after the Echo’s Hip-Hop/Urban prize was handed this month to rap duo Kollegah and Farid Bang, who in their song “0815” say their bodies are “more defined than Auschwitz prisoners.”
The prize, which is based on sales, had gone to the act after they sold more than 200,000 copies of their album “Young, Brutal and Handsome 3.”
Star conductor Daniel Barenboim this week became the latest high-profile musician to return an earlier Echo award in protest.
And whereas her opinion is no more important than the next person’s, we live in an era when fame is revered. Regrettably, Ms. Portman appears to confuse her ability to generate headlines with the importance and sagacity of her views.
Ms. Portman may be surprised to learn that not everyone in Israel is a knuckle-dragging simpleton. Many Israelis and Jews (and others) are “distressed” by all manner of events here and abroad. But we do not stomp our feet and storm out of the room because things are not going our way. We do what we have always done: we stubbornly carry on and work to effect change.
Among the members of the various Genesis Prize committees are more than a few internationally renowned champions of all manner of liberal causes who have found a dignified, constructive way to express their strong disagreement with events in Israel and elsewhere. In fact, this year’s recipient of the Inaugural Genesis Lifetime Achievement Award—United States Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg—is a poster-girl of Ms. Portman’s crowd.
There were many more responsible and mature options available to Ms. Portman short of toddler-esque petulance to express her views. She could have crafted a clever speech to deliver at the ceremony but chose not to. She could have written a thoughtful opinion piece for any number of publications but chose not to. She could have conveyed her sensitivities to the Genesis organizers and a reasonable solution would likely have been conceived.
The silver lining in all this is the possibility that the Genesis Prize directors and others may use this opportunity to re-calibrate their approach. Rather than pandering to bankable stars who draw glitter and gold, perhaps they will refocus on the many exceptionally deserving individuals beavering away in obscurity and bereft of the obnoxious hubris with which Natalie Portman is inflicted.
Altogether she has her heart in three continents…and still so young.
Her heart, at one time, was for John Kerry, when that anti-Israel zealot made a run for president. After he quit, her heart was for Hillary Clinton.
Hillary’s heart…and the heart of the entire Democratic Party…has never been for Jerusalem. President Trump – Yes!
Always, Portman’s heart was for Barack Hussein Obama…and from what she’s been saying, it appears that her heart is with BDS, Fatah and Hamas.
She denies this but the equation is quite simple, so as we observed elsewhere, there can be no dithering and no middle ground – in or out.
You are with us or against us and by declining to accept the award in Jerusalem, she is out, and this stunt has now endeared her to Islamic terrorists everywhere.
She is their dream come true and somewhere out there Vanessa Redgrave is smiling.
All things considered, The Jane Fonda Award or the Geraldo Rivera Prize would have been far more appropriate.
After Tuesday’s meeting with Corbyn, a joint statement from the heads of the Jewish Leadership Council (JLC) and the Board of Deputies (BoD) — Jonathan Arkush and Jonathan Goldstein — described the encounter as a “disappointing missed opportunity regarding the problem of antisemitism in the Labour Party.”
“We are disappointed that Mr Corbyn’s proposals fell short of the minimum level of action which our letter suggested,” the statement said. “In particular, they did not agree in the meeting with our proposals that there should be a fixed timetable to deal with antisemitism cases; that they should expedite the long-standing cases involving Ken Livingstone and Jackie Walker; that no MP should share a platform with somebody expelled or suspended for antisemitism; that they adopt the full International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of antisemitism with all its examples and clauses; that there should be transparent oversight of their disciplinary process.”
“Words in letters and newspaper articles will never be enough,” the statement said. “We welcome the fact that Mr Corbyn’s words have changed but it is action by which the Jewish community will judge him and the Labour Party.”
The head of an antisemitism monitoring group in the UK said he was not surprised by the meeting’s outcome.
“We did not expect Jeremy Corbyn to change his ways after three years, and having set the bar so dismally low he lived up to expectations,” Gideon Falter of the Campaign Against Antisemitism (CAA) said in a statement.
Corbyn himself described the meeting as “positive and constructive” in a statement issued on social media. But while the Labour leader reiterated the party’s desire to be a “safe and welcoming place” for Jewish members, the statement pointedly did not refer to the proposals urged on him by Jewish leaders.
Corbyn’s article on Tuesday also revealed a second goal that will do little to mend his relations with British Jews, among whom support for the Labour Party is at an all-time low. Namely, defending the Palestine solidarity movement from the charge of antisemitism, despite its support for the elimination of Israel as a sovereign Jewish state and its advocacy of the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel alone.
“Anti-Zionism is not in itself antisemitic and many Jews themselves are not Zionists,” Corbyn asserted. “But there are also a very few who are drawn to the Palestinian question precisely because it affords an opportunity to express hostility to Jewish people in a ‘respectable’ setting. Our movement must not be a home for such individuals.”
Corbyn’s robust defense of anti-Zionism effectively means that past and future cases of Israel-related antisemitism in the Labour Party will be judged from the flawed assumption that, in the vast majority of cases, what is being held up as antisemitic will turn out to be merely “anti-Zionist.”
British Jewish leaders expressed disappointment after meeting with Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn on Tuesday night to discuss his failure to stamp out anti-Semitism within his party.
Corbyn, however, described the meeting as “positive and constructive,” and vowed to take further steps to combat the phenomenon.
The Board of Deputies of British Jews, Anglo Jewry’s main representative organization, and the Jewish Leadership Council wrote in a statement after the meeting that while they welcomed Corbyn’s personal involvement in the discussion, he failed to back up his statements with action.
“Our meeting with Jeremy Corbyn today was a disappointing missed opportunity regarding the problem of anti-Semitism in the Labour party,” the UK Jewish leaders said in a statement.
Corbyn, leader of Britain’s main opposition party, “failed to agree to any of the concrete actions we asked for in our letter to him of 28th of March,” they said, adding that the Labour leader’s “proposals fell short of the minimum level of action” that was expected of him.
The way that the Board of Deputies and the Jewish Leadership Council’s engagement with Mr Corbyn has played out has proved us sadly to have been right. Setting their sights on achieving a change from Mr Corbyn himself, they set out a series of preconditions for meeting him, including that he must cease to meet with “fringe organisations” instead of mainstream Britsih Jewry. A few days later, Mr Corbyn attended an event by a fringe organisation called Jewdas and then wrote to the Jewish charities telling them that he would be willing to meet them “unconditionally”, clearly meaning that he refused to accept any preconditions. The Board of Deputies and the Jewish Leadership Council said that they would attend the meeting, but as soon as they did so, Mr Corbyn tried to convene a second meeting with fringe organisations, which only fell apart because no mainstream Jewish organisations would agree to go along. Still, the Board of Deputies and the Jewish Leadership Council said they would meet Mr Corbyn but even on the day of the meeting, he was sending mixed messages, with a carefully-crafted comment article in the Evening Standard simultaneously apologising for antisemitism whilst extolling the virtues of anti-Zionism, whilst in off-the-cuff comments he made clear to journalists that he sees no particular problem in the Labour Party. Now, unsurprisingly, the meeting has ended with nothing to show, and all that has happened is that Mr Corbyn has bought more time.
Campaign Against Antisemitism has supported and not interfered in the Board of Deputies and the Jewish Leadership Council’s attempts to negotiate with Mr Corbyn. However, we knew how it would end, and we decided not to participate.
Campaign Against Antisemitism recognised long ago that Mr Corbyn’s leadership of the Labour Party, and the group around him, are the source of the problem, not the solution. Far from thinking it profitable to negotiate with Mr Corbyn, we have submitted a disciplinary complaint against him to the Labour Party, which we intend to enforce through the courts if necessary. With the failure of the Board of Deputies and the Jewish Leadership Council’s efforts, we now ask the Jewish community and Labour MPs to unite around that complaint, and join our quest for transparent disciplinary processes to be adopted by all of our political parties, by law if necessary.
Jeremy Corbyn says the Labour anti-Semitism stories are not a smear – well Len McCluskey hasn’t got the memo. The Unite boss has written a sinister article for the New Statesman condemning the Labour MPs who spoke out against anti-Semitism in parliament, and threatening them with deselection. Len accuses Chris Leslie, Neil Coyle, John Woodcock, Wes Streeting and Ian Austin of “sustained smearing” of Corbyn. He concludes: “Promiscuous critics must expect to be criticised, and those who wish to hold Corbyn to account can expect to be held to account themselves”.
Wes Streeting responds:
“I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: no abuse, intimidation or threats of deselection will prevent me from voicing the concerns of my Jewish constituents about antisemitism in the Labour Party.”
Neil Coyle says:
“Jeremy says antisemitism must be tackled. Len claims it doesn’t exist. Undermining the leader and Party efforts to tackle the problem.”
Corbyn’s article in the Evening Standard yesterday is worth nothing when he allows his outriders to continue to dismiss anti-Semitism as a smear…
This week, despite opposition from Jewish groups, the Free University of Brussels is set to honour film director Ken Loach with a doctorate honoris causa in recognition of “his militant work on social conflicts and the fight for the right of workers or illegal immigrants”. A member of the Labour Party for many years, Mr Loach’s voice has been among the loudest of those who attempt to dismiss the antisemitism crisis currently afflicting the Party as non-existent and a right-wing smear campaign, despite the Labour leader himself having recently acknowledged the existence of the problem. This is hard to see as anything other than accusing the victims of antisemitism in the Party of acting in bad faith by fabricating or exaggerating their claims.
Last September, Mr Loach caused outrage when, during an interview with the BBC, he refused to denounce Holocaust denial. The interview took place shortly after the last Labour Party conference, where an activist at a fringe meeting attached to the event publicly stated that it should be legitimate to discuss whether the Holocaust happened. Mr Loach told the BBC interviewer: “History is for all of us to discuss. All history is our common heritage to discuss and analyze. The founding of the State of Israel, for example, based on ethnic cleansing, is there for us to discuss.”
The International Definition of Antisemitism states that “denying the fact, scope, mechanisms (e.g. gas chambers) or intentionality of the genocide of the Jewish people at the hands of National Socialist Germany and its supporters and accomplices during World War II (the Holocaust)” is a manifestation of antisemitism.
For the only reliable data on antisemitism amongst Labour officials, see Campaign Against Antisemitism’s Antisemitism in Political Parties project. This brought together all available information on accusations of antisemitism against officials of and candidates for all major parties since 2013 and combined it with a trawl of 2017 general election candidates’ public social media accounts. The project was launched in September 2017, and an updated version will soon be released. It found that there are problems in all major British political parties, but that the problems in the Labour Party are particularly severe.
We are appalled by reports that the Labour Party has even used our research out of context to brief its own MPs.
Those problems have shown no signs of improvement since September, and they go all the way to the very top of the Party. That is why we issued a disciplinary complaint against Jeremy Corbyn on 25th March and held a demonstration outside the Labour Party Head Office on 8th April. Over a thousand of the 2,000 who took part in the demonstration completed complaint letters of their own on the day.
IsraellyCool: Twitter Rejects My Appeal, Threatens Suspension
In other words, someone read over my appeal – in which I explained what I was doing with tweets like the above – and yet still decided to reject it. Furthermore, I stand to have my account suspended for good – I cannot, after all, find all such old tweets and start furiously deleting (I have tweeted over 41,000 times).
In the meantime, Hamas and other terror groups, not to mention countless antisemites and racists, continue to tweet, unimpeded. In fact, I am almost certain it is some of these antisemites who have flagged the old tweets in order to get me suspended.
If you can make any sense of this, be my guest.
Al Awda, the Palestine Right to Return Coalition, is not a peace group. The extremist group does not accept the existence of Israel within any border, promotes intolerance, rationalizes violence, and has pushed conspiracy theories and anti-Semitic tropes to its followers.
According to the venerable Anti-Defamation league (ADL), Al Awda has openly supported terrorist groups, writing that
“At least five communiques from the PFLP including one in conjunction with the Al -Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, and one joint statement with Hamas were distributed via Al-Awda’s main listserve. Nearly all of the communiques expressed support for terrorist activity, extolling “martyrs”, encouraging the “resistance” and detailing violence against Israeli troops”
Its co-founder Zahi Damuni has called for “armed struggle” against Israel, stating that the “armed Palestinian resistance must react in the middle of Tel Aviv”.
On April 10th, The Independent republished a New York Times article by Isabel Kershner (“Israeli forces caught in video shooting Palestinian man then whooping”) that was published on April 9th.
The report cited grainy video footage from several months ago “appearing to show Israeli troops shooting a Palestinian man across the border fence at a time when he posed no obvious threat…and then rejoicing”. The NYT then highlighted the fact that “another soldier who appears to be videoing the scene whoops with excitement”, footage the NYT claims bolsters criticism that the IDF uses “disproportionate force” against Gaza “protesters”.
However, the report doesn’t include the official IDF statement about the video which was available more than an hour before the Indy republished the NYT piece. The IDF statement, as reported by multiple Israeli news outlets, significantly changes the story, as it provides Israel’s account of the circumstances – and context – by which the Palestinian man was shot. This includes prior warnings given by the soldier for the man to halt, the fact that he was shot in the leg and not killed, and that he had led a violent protest at the border which included the use of Molotov cocktails.
These facts are important because the article claims that the Palestinian man who was shot appeared to “pose no threat”.
An organization representing more than 950 US Orthodox rabbis has condemned an “alarming” increase in violent attacks on Jews in New York City, saying it would work with authorities to provide protection to “neighborhoods under siege” after at least two anti-Semitic assaults within a week.
The Rabbinical Alliance of America — also known as “Iggud HaRabbonim” — said in a statement Monday that it “categorically condemns the alarming increase of horrifying physical attacks on Jews throughout New York City and beyond, and calls on all community, civic and political leaders to unite in denouncing this violent Jew hatred.”
The professional rabbinical organization, which was founded in 1942, listed three recent incidents in which Jews were violently attacked, two of which have been confirmed as anti-Semitic.
On Saturday, 52-year-old Menachem Moskowitz, an ultra-Orthodox Jew, was violently assaulted while walking home from Shabbat services in the Crown Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn.
Police have opened an investigation into the attack as an assault motivated by bias, after the victim said the assailant had told him he “hated Jews” and threatened to kill him.
BERLIN, Germany — non-Jewish Germans joined with Jews wearing kippahs at several protests across Germany on Wednesday in a sign of solidarity after a spate of shocking anti-Semitic incidents, raising pointed questions about Berlin’s ability to protect its burgeoning Jewish community seven decades after the Holocaust.
One day after the head of Germany’s Central Council of Jews, Josef Schuster, warned against wearing religious symbols on city streets for fear of attack, some 150 protesters came to a rally in the eastern German city of Erfurt and hundreds more were expected later in the day in Berlin, Cologne and Potsdam.
“We must never allow anti-Semitism to become commonplace in Germany again,” Foreign Minister Heiko Maas told the daily Tagesspiegel ahead of a “Berlin Wears Kippa” event where Jews and non-Jews will wear the traditional skullcap in a shared show of defiance.
Every attack on Jewish life “is an attack on us all,” Maas added.
More than 2,000 people — Jews, Christians, Muslims and atheists — put on kippas in a show of solidarity in Berlin.
The yarmulkes were of all varieties — silky and knitted, leathery, embroidered and patterned. Holding them so the wind wouldn’t blow them away, both men and women cheered when Berlin Mayor Michael Mueller told them, “Today, we all wear kippa. Today, Berlin is wearing kippa.”
Jewish community leaders said it was the biggest such display in public since before World War II.
PreOccupiedTerritory: Study Links Erectile Dysfunction With Antisemitism (satire)
Scientists have discovered a causative connection between hatred for Jews and reduced blood flow to male reproductive organs, a medical journal is reporting.
This week’s issue of the New England Journal of Medicine cites a new study by the Centers for Disease Control that finds a direct link from antisemitism to erectile dysfunction, and uses that link to explain several significant phenomena.
A team of physicians and nurses sampled circulation in males before and after participation in organized events featuring antisemitism, and discovered that afterwards, more than two thirds of the subjects suffered from a severe reduction in blood flow to their penile tissue to the point that achieving the turgidity necessary to conduct sexual intercourse was rendered impossible without mechanical or pharmacological intervention. Erectile dysfunction persisted for an average of three weeks after the event and did eventually fade, but full erectile functionality only returned if the subject engaged in no large-scale antisemitic activity for six weeks, and even then did not reach pre-antisemitism levels. The study authors cautioned that causation was well established, but the mechanism by which the erectile dysfunction occurs remains unknown.
“While we have determined that anti-Jewish activity leads to reduced testosterone production in males and restricted blood flow to erectile tissue, we remain at a loss to explain the process,” observed lead study author Dr. Schlaff Schwartz. “But we also documented a physiological equivalence between a single, large-scale antisemitic activity such as an anti-Israel rally or sustained heckling of a Jewish speaker, and smaller, but repeated acts of antisemitism such as harassing Jews online or spraying anti-Jewish graffiti. Both types of activity had a similar result in erectile dysfunction.”
As calls intensify for British jazz and funk group Jamiroquai to cancel its upcoming show in Israel, the band’s lead singer put out a video message to reassure local fans on Tuesday.
“Hi everybody,” Jay Kay said in the selfie-stick video he sent to the Israeli production company earlier this week. “I’m taking a short break at home before I’m off to Baku, and then – I am coming to Tel Aviv, in Israel, where we’ve never played. And I’m thoroughly looking forward to it.”
The band is slated to play a gig at the Rishon Lezion Live Park, just outside Tel Aviv, on May 2.
“So all you guys out there thinking I’m not coming – I am coming. Okay? Cool.”
On Monday, Artists for Palestine UK wrote an open letter to the band, calling on them to cancel the upcoming show.
“Inspired by the boycott movement in apartheid South Africa,” the letter reads, “the Palestinian people ask that artists refrain from entertaining apartheid Israel. Palestinians pay with life and limb for their protests, and they ask for your support. Will you stand with them? Will you cancel your concert in Israel?”
It appears that the answer is a resounding no.
Beloved Canadian singer songwriter Alanis Morissette will be heading back to Israel this year, to perform one show only.
Morissette, a legendary figure on the alternative rock scene, will be holding a concert on July 30 at the Rishon Lezion Live Park. The singer has performed in Israel multiple times before, including in 2012 and in 2000.
She is best known for her slew of hit songs, including “Ironic,” “Hand in My Pocket,” “You Oughta Know” and “You Learn.”
Throughout her almost 30-year career, Morissette has been nominated for 14 Grammy awards and taken home seven. Her whopping eight studio albums have sold more than 60 million copies worldwide.
Morissette’s last Israel show was in 2012, just a few weeks after a cease-fire took hold in Operation Pillar of Defense. Despite pressure to cancel, the performer remained defiant, and also spent several days touring the country, including a stop at the Western Wall.
Backstreet Boys singer Nick Carter filmed a video onstage during his band’s live concert in Israel on Sunday.
Carter later posted the clip on Twitter and wrote in the caption, “25 years strong! 16 thousand people and sold out in Israel. Thank you so much to all our fans around the world. We love you.”
The pop band celebrated its 25th anniversary on Friday.
According to a Times of Israel report, the show at Rishon Lezion Live Park sold out in four days. The group shouted “mazal tovs!” and “l’chaims!” at various moments throughout the concert and also announced a new album, which will be their ninth studio album, and a single set to be released in May.
“I literally want to move here, we love coming to Israel,” singer Alexander James “AJ” McLean said at the start of the concert. “You’ve got beautiful people, good food, and the ladies… I see you ladies.” His bandmate, Kevin Richardson, told the crowd, “We’re going to keep coming back here to Israel again and again and again.”
Simon Kindleysides of Norfolk, England became the first paralyzed man to finish the London Marathon on Monday, an astonishing feat which took him 36 hours to complete.
He was able to walk the entire 26.2 mile course with the help of the the ReWalk robotic exoskeleton suit, a wearable device developed in Israel that allows paraplegics to mimic the function of the legs and hips.
The 34-year-old father of three ran in support of a charity that funds brain tumor research, for which he managed to raise over 10,000 euros. On his crowdfunding page he wrote:
“I want to be a HUGE role model not just to my children but to others out there who are ‘disabled’ and don’t get enough credit and to people who don’t think they can do stuff.”
His social media accounts were awash with praise and congratulations following the historic event. Well-wishers called him an “inspiration” and lauded him for “breaking barriers.”
For more than 60 years, ANZAC Day memorial services in Israel have focused on the failed Gallipoli campaign in which thousands of Australian and New Zealand soldiers fighting for peace on foreign soil made the supreme sacrifice.
This year, the focus was more on the Western Front, primarily due to the opening this week of a memorial center that bears the name of a man acknowledged as the greatest soldier in Australian history, Sir John Monash, who as it happens was also a proud Jew, and president of the Zionist Federation of Australia.
The John Monash Memorial Center that was opened on Tuesday in Villers-Bretonneux, France, by Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Prince Charles was mentioned at the Commonwealth War Graves Cemetery in Jerusalem on Wednesday by Australian Ambassador Chris Cannan during his ANZAC Day address.
Monash, who was also a lawyer and an engineer, made such an impact on Australian military and civilian history that one of Australia’s top universities bears his name, and in Israel, Kfar Monash, a village in the northern area of the Sharon Plain, was established in 1946 by Australian Jewish ex-servicemen.
The family of Ezra Schwartz – the 18-year-old American on a gap-year Israel program who was murdered by a Palestinian terrorist in 2015 – hosted a baseball tournament in his memory in Sharon, Massachusetts this past weekend.
The Ezra Schwartz Memorial Baseball Tournament took place between April 19 and 22 with the goal of honoring his memory and keeping his legacy alive.
Speaking to The Jerusalem Post late Sunday night from the tournament, Ezra’s mother, Ruth, said “we decided to create the baseball tournament as a fun way to keep his memory alive, and [as] a way to keep alive his passion for baseball and to share it with his siblings, friends and teammates.”
“We wanted to find a way to remember Ezra with a smile on his face and having fun… his life and death are with us every day,” she added.
Muhammad Haruv perpetrated the drive-by shooting, killing Schwartz and two others. He was on his way to a nature preserve near the Gush Etzion Junction in the West Bank to do volunteer work.
Haruv was sentenced to four life prison terms by the Judea Military Court in March 2017 for the three murders and numerous attempted murders in the attack, during which he fired dozens of bullets.
The Temple organizations expect that the upcoming Jerusalem Liberation Day, May 13, will see a record rise in the number of Jewish visits to the holy site, the largest since the destruction of the Temple 1,947 years ago.
Back in 1967, General Mordechai Gur made his immortal declaration, “Har Ha’Bayit B’Yadeinu” (The Temple Mount is in our hands), only to be reversed a few hours later by then Defense Minister Moshe Dayan, who handed over the keys to the most sacred Jewish site to the Jordanian Waqf. The Headquarters of the Temple Mount Organization believe that the presence of 2,000 Jews on that hallowed ground will go a long way to making that brave Israeli General’s statement a reality once again.
According to the Headquarters of Temple Organizations, the past year—the jubilee year for the liberation of the Temple Mount back in 1967, has already seen a record in both quantity and quality of Jews’ return to their Temple. By quality, the group means ascents to the Temple Mount following a dip in a ritual bath, in keeping with Jewish law.
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