October 19, 2021

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05/28 Links Pt2: Phillips: Jewish conservatism is the key to our survival; NYPD: 83% Rise In Hate Crimes ‘An Anti-Semitism Crisis’; Bob Bernstein, HRW founder who later slammed its anti-Israel bias, dies at 96


From Ian:

Melanie Phillips: Jewish conservatism is the key to our survival
The American philanthropic foundation, the Tikvah Fund, has decided to challenge the dominance of liberal universalism among Jews and promote instead a Jewish conservative movement. After two well-attended conferences in the US suggesting pent-up sympathy for such ideas, it held a third last week in Jerusalem.

Some 850 people packed into the city’s International Conference Centre to listen to Yoram Hazony, author of The Virtue of Nationalism, Douglas Murray, author of The Strange Death of Europe, and various luminaries of the Israeli conservative scene (yes, there is one).

Both Hazony and Murray pointed out that conservatism resonates in Israel far more than in Britain or Europe. Murray said that, while nationalism and patriotism are not understood in Europe, most Israelis realise these are a force for good.

Israelis recognise strong borders are a prerequisite for survival; in Europe they’re seen as a cause of war. And even most secular Israelis, he said, recognise they are at least “in dialogue with the religion of their forbears”; in Europe, religion and philosophy are viewed as accessories to the cultural crime of merely being the west.

For his part, Hazony observed that Israel’s traditionalism – the Bible being taught in all schools, the orthodox religious marriage ceremony, the nation- state law which is so controversial among Israeli leftists and diaspora Jews – conserves and strengthens the nation.

In 1896, he said, Theodore Herzl wrote that the Jews in Israel should be traditional and conservative. Yet the left, both within and outside Israel, has a problem with the traditional family, the idea of distinct men and women, property rights, immigration controls and so on. “The enlightened liberal world”, he said, “hates not Israel but Israeli conservatism and tradition. It hates the people sitting in this room.” And unfortunately many diaspora Jews sign up to this too.

Howard Jacobson: Free Palestine

I’ve been trying to work out why her words offend me retrospectively. Does it go back to her original decision to embrace ideologies and symbols positively inimical to the faith in which she was born? There must be an exhilaration in apostasy. Only imagine the first time the daughter of Jewish parents wraps herself in a keffiyeh. That this is a thrill a number of Jews have chosen to experience in our time should give us pause. Is not sympathy for others enjoined upon us? “Love the stranger,” Deuteronomy commands, and it is a fair point that Palestinians are hardly even strangers in the Land of Israel. Leave the unholy frisson of apostatizing out of it and it is hard to take exception with what E.G. gave as her motive for calling to me in the street—“I just want everyone to have a chance at life.” Who doesn’t?

Ask her why she thinks I don’t, however; ask why she feels confident in asserting that I often speak out against justice for Palestinians—when I never have—and we quickly run into the rigid dualism of the activist, where whatever isn’t wholly good in their eyes must be wholly evil. According to this febrile logic, those who don’t support the cause must of necessity oppose it. Thus, while she is right that I am unlikely to be a friend of Palestine Live, she is wrong to suppose that a hostility to Palestinians is the reason.

This assumption of heartlessness whenever Israel is defended or Zionism embraced bedevils relations between the factions contesting the rights and wrongs of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. To speak up even lukewarmly for Israel outside a Jew-friendly environment is to invite obloquy. To declare oneself a Zionist of any kind is to present an incontestable thumbprint of exceptionalism and cruelty.

There is a vicious circularity to this essentialist logic. In the very act of arguing that one or other aspect of the “occupation” is not as it is frequently presented—that one wall does not apartheid make nor one war a genocide—one merely confirms the original charge of inhumanity. Not to grant Palestinians everything is to grant them nothing.

Thus, the Jew remains forever trapped in being Jew. Simply to invoke anti-Semitism is to prove his bad faith. The more he struggles in the birdlime, the faster stuck he becomes.

Alan M. Dershowitz:It is Not Surprising to See an Increase in Jew-hatred in Western Europe

“But Israel is doing bad things to the Palestinians,” the European apologists insist, “and we are sensitive to the plight of the underdog.”

No, you’re not! Where are your demonstrations on behalf of the oppressed Tibetans, Georgians, Syrians, Armenians, Kurds, or even Ukrainians? Where are your BDS movements against the Chinese, the Russians, the Cubans, the Turks, or the Assad regime?

None of this is to deny Israel’s imperfections or the criticism it justly deserves for some of its policies. But these imperfections and deserved criticism cannot even begin to explain, must less justify, the disproportionate hatred directed against the only nation-state of the Jewish people and the disproportionate silence regarding the far greater imperfections and deserved criticism of other nations and groups including the Palestinians.

Ben-Dror Yemini: WHO, France and dabbling in anti-Semitism

Wow! Muslim countries, joined by countries such as Venezuela, Bolivia and Cuba, have submitted a proposal about caring for the Palestinians.

Why do just the Palestinians deserve a special item on the WHO agenda? Why is there no special item for the inhabitants of Yemen, Syria, Congo or Venezuela?

In fact, the life expectancy of Palestinians in territories controlled by Israel, including Gaza, is 72.65 years. In Syria it is 69.51 years, in Bolivia it is 67.72 years, in Yemen 63.51 years and in Congo it’s 61.42 years.

Essentially, the Palestinians are in better health than the average citizens of the countries that submitted the proposal. Should they not be worrying about themselves first?

But let’s continue. Israeli control of the territories began in 1967. In a previous time, when those areas were under the control of Jordan and Egypt, life expectancy was 48.7 years (according to the most prominent Palestinian demographer, Dr. Wael R. Ennab). And while the Palestinians were once well below the world average for life expectancy, they now rank higher than most of the world – including European countries like Turkey, Ukraine and Russia.

Data on infant mortality rates indicates a similar jump. In 1967, Palestinian infant mortality rates were 152-162 deaths per 1,000 births. But in the last decade, it has been less than 20 deaths per 1,000 births.

This dramatic reversal across every health-related parameter is down to extensive cooperation between health centers in the Palestinian territories and Israeli health services. This cooperation included, for example, extensive training of Palestinian physicians and treatment of Palestinian patients in Israeli hospitals.

It is doubtful that there is another population group that has undergone such a dramatic, positive change in such a short period of time. In fact, the World Health Organization should require Israel to continue this cooperation with the Palestinians, even in the event of a peace agreement.

But when incitement, hatred and politics overtake common sense and facts, we have the absurd situation in which, of all the countries on the planet, the World Health Organization concerns itself solely with a population that, according to every possible parameter, is better off than the world average, and especially in countries hostile to Israel. (h/t IsaacStorm)

Strike Two! BuzzFeed’s Retraction of a Ben Shapiro Headline is Also Wrong

So to unpack that. The original tweet said that “A man who vandalized a synagogue with Nazi symbols told federal agents his road to radicalization included meeting with the far-right group Identity Evropa and reading Ben Shapiro, Breitbart News, and the Nazi propaganda site Stormfront.”

That is wrong because the man didn’t tell federal agents that.

Then they retracted it with a snarkastic “fake but true” correction that says “We have deleted this tweet because it was inaccurate: the man told prosecutors his road to radicalization included his wife reading Ben Shapiro, Breitbart News, and the Nazi propaganda site Stormfront.”

And that is wrong, also. The man also did not tell prosecutors that.

In fact, as the court documents show, the man’s LAWYER brought up Shapiro prior to sentencing in hopes of mitigation, in the context of naming his WIFE as the one who radicalized him. The defendant’s attorney said that the wife read Shapiro, to the court. The “man” did not tell “prosecutors” anything of the kind.

JPost Editorial: German warning

US Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell reacted to Klein’s comments in a similar vein, calling on Jews to wear kippot with pride, saying Jews in Germany should not conceal their religious identity. “The opposite is true,” tweeted Grenell. “Wear your kippah. Wear your friend’s kippah. Borrow a kippah and wear it for our Jewish neighbors. Educate people that we are a diverse society.”

Simon Wiesenthal Center associate dean Rabbi Abraham Cooper told the Post, “Jews should never be relegated to second-class citizens. Stand with your Jewish neighbors, punish antisemitism from the extreme far Right, far Left and Islamist.”
British political and media commentator Tom Gross posted on Facebook, “Imagine the outcry if the German authorities had to warn Muslims not to wear hijabs in public for their own safety, or said that it was dangerous for Christians to wear crosses.”

Perhaps the most positive response came from Germany’s best-selling newspaper Bild, which not only printed a front-page commentary on the issue on Monday, declaring: “The kippah belongs to Germany,” but accompanied it with a cut-out kippah, decorated with three stars of David that can be worn as a sign of solidarity.

Bild’s editor-in-chief, Julian Reichelt, wrote in the commentary, “We should be forever thankful in Germany that Jewish life is again blossoming.” He urged readers to “explain to your children what the kippah is, and post pictures on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.” And above all, Reichelt called on readers to “Go on the street wearing the kippah.”

We thank him for his heartwarming gesture and concur with his sentiments. It is unconscionable that Jews should be scared to wear a kippah in public, anywhere.

Germany itself needs to understand the implications of what stands behind Klein’s warning: If German Jews feel threatened, then all of Germany is at risk. Hatred never stops with the Jews.

Merkel: All German synagogues, Jewish schools need police protection

German leader Angela Merkel said Monday that her country’s Jewish population needs constant police protection.

Merkel addressed the current rise in anti-Semitism in her country, saying in a CNN interview that it has “always had a certain number of anti-Semites among us, unfortunately.”

“There is to this day not a single synagogue, not a single daycare center for Jewish children, not a single school for Jewish children that does not need to be guarded by German policemen,” Merkel said.

Last week the German government’s anti-Semitism commissioner, Felix Klein, set off a controversy when he suggested in the wake of a rise in anti-Semitic attacks that it was too dangerous for Jews to wear the traditional Jewish head covering in parts of the country.

Merkel said Germans had to face up “to the specters of the past.”

“We have to tell our young people what history has brought over us and others,” the chancellor said.

PreOccupiedTerritory: Activists Disappointed Germany Didn’t Also Recommend Jews In Israel Not Wear Kippah (satire)

A man striving to engineer the reduction or elimination of Judaism from public life in the Jewish State voiced frustration today that the Berlin official who advised Jews in his country not to display their Jewishness in the open, for their safety, had not extended that recommendation to Jews in Israel.

Germany’s antisemitism czar announced Sunday that spiking antisemitic incidents have made it inadvisable for Jews to attract attention as such, prompting soul-searching among many Germans, outrage among others, and disappointment for Yair Putzman, 35, an anti-religion activist who had hoped such an announcement would apply to Israel as well, considering the antisemitic opposition the country faces.

“I understand he’s German and was only talking about Germany because that’s where his expertise and authority extend, but we have to follow the same line of reasoning, and reason is the way to go,” lamented Putzman. “The number of Jews in Germany under threat of attack by antisemites is tiny compared to the number of Jews in Israel facing antisemitic enemies – obviously we should adopt the same tactic here, and stop looking so Jewish to our neighbors.”

Putzman agreed that refraining from wearing a kippah or other displays of Jewishness would not solve the antisemitism problem by itself. “That’s just an interim measure, a tactical move to make attacks more unlikely in the short term, for lack of visible targets. It’s true that if we want to get rid of the problem itself, we have to adopt more far-reaching policies. For one thing, if we stopped everyone from being Jewish in the first place, or stopped Jews from being, whichever, antisemitic incidents would basically disappear. I mean, just look at Syria – no antisemitic vandalism at all since the last Jews left. I’d have thought someone from Germany, of all places, might grasp that.”

New York Times Editorial Blames Netanyahu for European Antisemitism

The New York Times is using an editorial denouncing antisemitism in Europe as an opportunity to take a cheap shot at the Israeli prime minister.

In an editorial headlined “The Old Scourge of Anti-Semitism Rises Anew in Europe,” the Times writes, “Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has not helped matters by finding common cause with nationalist leaders like the Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban or President Trump so long as they do not support a Palestinian state.”

European antisemitism existed before the modern State of Israel. It exists independent of the policies of any Israeli prime minister. Blaming the Jews, or one particular Jew, for antisemitism is inaccurate. It’s a logical error. It’s arguably an act of antisemitism itself, as it suggests that Israel, alone of all nations, should be unable to pursue a foreign policy based on its national interests for fear of provoking a latent and essentially irrational hatred.

After all, if Netanyahu were to refuse to meet with Trump or Orban, that might also provoke antisemitism. What’s the Israeli foreign ministry or prime minister’s office supposed to do? Weigh each and every foreign policy decision on the basis of what some Jew-hating sickos might think about it? It makes no sense. I mean, the only way it does makes any sense is if one assumes that what the Times is really up to isn’t advancing the interests of the Jews or opposing bigotry in all forms but rather advancing left-wing politics while trying to appease the many readers justifiably outraged by its publication of an antisemitic cartoon.

Don’t just take it from me: take it from Michael Oren, the historian and former Israeli ambassador to America, who tweeted, “All the HYPOCRISY that fits. The NY Times editorial on rising anti-Semitism cites Netanyahu as a source but omits Omar, Tlaib, and, incredibly, The NY Times and its Nazi cartoon and endless articles vilifying the one Jewish state and its supporters. Laughable if not so tragic.”

‘An Anti-Semitism Crisis’: NYPD Records Staggering 83% Rise In Hate Crimes

According to The Wall Street Journal, the New York Police Department (NYPD) has recorded a truly harrowing and eye-popping increase in city-wide hate crimes over the past year. Specifically, NYPD statistics reveal that hate crimes have increased by a whopping 83% — and the City Council’s speaker minced no words in lamenting the epidemic presently afflicting the city with the nation’s largest Jewish population as “an anti-Semitism crisis.”

Per the Journal:
The New York Police Department had 176 complaints of hate crimes from Jan. 1 to May 19, the most recent date for which the data is available, according to figures provided to The Wall Street Journal. That is an 83% increase in hate-crime complaints across all categories, compared with the same period in 2018.

The New York City Council created the Office of Hate Crime Prevention in January to coordinate city agencies’ efforts to address illegal bias incidents. …

“Our residents should feel free to worship without fear–and yet they can’t right now,” [City Council Speaker Corey Johnson] said. “We have an anti-Semitism crisis in New York. It’s a national problem, but New York accounts for way too many incidents.” …

Experts disagree on the reasons behind the rise in crimes, but NYPD Chief of Detectives Dermot Shea said at a news conference earlier this month that many individuals arrested for hate crimes have previously committed similar acts. …

“Things are out of control,” said former State Assemblyman Dov Hikind of Brooklyn, who is founder of the group Americans Against Antisemitism. “All the resources in the world should be allocated to this purpose.”

The Daily Wire has reported before on the shocking rise in anti-Semitic incidents in New York City over the past couple of years. Curiously, however, much of the news surrounding the tragic rise has gone unreported by the mainstream press.

Standing Up to Antisemitism in Queens, and Calling on Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to Do the Same

Raja Abdulhaq and Nerdeen Kiswani were scheduled to speak at the Church of the Redeemer in Astoria, Queens on the evening of May 14. Caleb De Jong, a member of the church board and of the Democratic Socialist Party, used his positions to organize the event in honor of the Palestinian “Nakba [catastrophe] Day.”

By portraying the speakers as Palestinian “human rights” activists, and characterizing the evening as an “educational forum,” De Jong had no difficulty persuading the church to host the speakers. However, when Astoria residents learned about the event, the plans began to change.

Unsurprisingly, Reverend Canon Juan A. Quevedo-Bosch was unfamiliar with Abdulhaq and Kiswani’s antisemitic and violent rhetoric, which includes calling for “armed resistance” and an “intifada revolution” in Israel — or, more precisely, terror against Israeli civilians. He did not know that when a Palestinian terrorist killed an Israeli civilian by “car ramming” and Palestinians celebrated in the streets, Kiswani wrote: “I will not be ashamed or embarrassed by this. These celebratory actions are what keep the resistance moving forward … no apology needed.”

When the reverend and the church community learned these facts, they called a meeting of the board members, who then voted to cancel the event.

The Lost Dakota Fighters of Israel’s War of Independence

When, in 2015, I discovered the Israeli efforts to establish an official museum for the Jewish soldiers in WWII, I was immediately drawn to the project and befriended its director. I saw it as a sacred mission, a complementary establishment to the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial that would honor those who served and fought and not just those who suffered and perished.

I could already imagine Zaidy’s picture and a short bio there. This is where his story belonged, and it gave me a small sense of ease that regardless of the result of my quest, there would be a place to educate others about the men and women of my grandfather’s generation—and perhaps even have a brief mention of him there, too.

But the museum has yet to take off, mired in endless bureaucracy, while the few remaining veterans continue to die off. And, as my grandfather has proven, not all the veterans want that part of their lives memorialized. When I told him that I had filled out his profile on the prospective museum’s website, and that I hoped his story would one day be featured in its halls alongside Wilf Canter’s, he demurred, as usual. “I’m just happy if they leave me alone,” he said.

Some 1.5 million Jewish soldiers fought for the allies in WWII, of whom more than 250,000 died in battle, including some 450 Canadians. Most of their stories are lost to history, and it looks as if Zaidy’s is probably going to be lost, too. It’s a chapter of his life that will stay buried, like the stories of so many others who were literally buried with theirs. And that’s the way he wants it.

U.S. Army Veterans Find Comfort in Israel on U.S. Memorial Day

‘I struggled for years trying to find healing from the moral injury of war and was overwhelmed by the impact that Jewish National Fund-USA (JNF-USA) had on my experience with Heroes to Heroes in Israel. Everywhere we went, JNF-USA was there!” said Joe Walters, 71, from Suffolk, Virginia.

A Vietnam War veteran, Walters is one of 277 US Army veterans who has traveled to Israel with Jewish National Fund-USA partner Heroes to Heroes, a US-based organization that provides spiritual healing and peer support for American combat veterans who have attempted suicide or are on a path to self-destruction. In partnership with JNF-USA, American and Israeli military veterans are also able to meet and bond during a 10-day journey to Israel, where teams of 12 to 14 US vets are led by program alumni. While in Israel, the vets are joined by their Israeli counterparts and visit various sites important to Israel’s path to independence.

An immediate recognizable difference pointed out to the American veterans upon arrival in Israel is how the US and Israel commemorate their nation’s respective memorial days.

Picnics, parades, and barbecues are the typical activities seen during Memorial Day weekend in the US. First observed in 1868, Memorial Day honors the men and women who died serving in the US military. While the day of observance in the US has largely lost its somber tone and moved towards shopping sales and weekend getaways, to many it still remains a day when families visit cemeteries and hold memorials to honor and remember those who died in service.

The scene is different in Israel during its national day of mourning, Yom Hazikaron. More somber and pensive in tone, Israel’s national day of mourning hits close to home for every citizen; everyone knows someone who fell protecting the country.

Israel’s Eurovision was seen by 182 million viewers

The world’s largest live music event, the Eurovision Song Contest was seen by 182 million viewers, the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) said in a press statement Tuesday.

The Grand Final took place on May 18 and drew in double the average prime-time viewing share for channels in Israel and across Europe. The EBU said that 36.7% share across 40 markets watched the competition this year.

Israel’s KAN, which hosted the contest, had an audience that was up 24% compared to the 2018 contest. 1.3 million viewers tuned in to the final, making it the largest Eurovision audience since Israel last hosted the event in 1999.

In the Netherlands, this year’s winner, 4.5 million viewers watched the Grand Final, over 70% of the TV viewing in the country.

Iceland saw the largest viewing share of any country with a market share of 98.4%.Iceland sent controversial act Hatari to Israel, which helped them qualify for the final for the first time since 2014.

Shalva founder to receive honorary doctorate from Bar-Ilan

The founder of Jerusalem’s Shalva institute, whose talented band of people with disabilities captured the hearts of Israelis and Eurovision watchers around the world, will receive an honorary doctorate degree from Bar-Ilan University next week.

Kalman Samuels, who was born and raised in Vancouver started the organization with his wife Malkiin 1990. The organization is non-denominational and free of charge and provides therapies and treatments, vocational training, and family support to those with disabilities.

In 1977, tragedy struck the Samuels couple when their baby son Yossi, who had been born healthy, underwent complications due to a faulty vaccine he had received that left him blind and deaf. As the young parents struggled to cope with suddenly having a child with disabilities, Malki vowed that if God ever decided “to help my Yossi, I’ll take it upon myself to help other people.”

With the help of teachers and programs, Yossi eventually learned to express himself using sign language and even talk. And his mother remembered her promise.

Today, Shalva serves as a national center for around 1,000 children and adults, providing programs that include daycare centers, recreation centers, integration kindergartens, employment training, intervention programs and more. The center also leads extensive research and develops programs that provide a model to organizations around the world on how to properly integrate people with disabilities into society.

Iceland’s Eurovision Band loses “Bad El Al service” case after Court finds no history of good El Al service (satire)

The District Court of Tel Aviv has dismissed the lawsuit brought against El Al Airlines by Hatari, Iceland’s Eurovision Entry. You see, Hatari, a band of woke rich kids committed in their own special way to social justice, decided to wave the Palestinian flag because they couldn’t find Narnia’s flag during a live Eurovision broadcast. And Israelis, being Israelis, decided to throw some serious shade, culminating in El Al allegedly giving the band purposely poor seats and service on their flight home. Hatari then responded by filing a lawsuit, which was subsequently tossed out today. You see, El Al has this tiny, and let us just stress VERY UNDESERVED reputation for…. you may want to sit down for this….. poor customer service. We know… crazy, right? (Editor’s Note: Just to be fair, we called El Al’s Toll Free Number about this rumor, but the woman yelled at us and then hung up.) So the Court resolved that there was in fact no data set of “good El Al Customer Service” with which to compare Hatari’s accusation of crappy service. The Daily Freier walked down to the courthouse to get all the facts.

We spoke to Tamar C., a bailiff at the courthouse, who read from the Court’s decision. “It is the Court’s opinion that the Band Hatari, henceforth to be referred to as ‘the plaintiff’, did not adequately prove they were purposely and maliciously served poor food, because none of us in the Courthouse can remember receiving ‘a good meal’ from El Al…. not even Sarit from the cleaning staff, and her brother works in El Al’s catering office.”

Mexico City Caves to BDS Extremists, Removes Photos of Jerusalem and Golan Heights

A dozen photographs have been removed from an exhibition on Israel in the Mexico City Metro after complaints filed by the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against the Jewish state, claiming the images, which included scenes from the Golan Heights and eastern Jerusalem, depicted territories under “brutal military occupation.”

Israel’s Foreign Ministry on Sunday confirmed that 12 of 50 photographs had been removed from the “A Look at Israel” exhibit in the city’s metro. Israel’s Ambassador to Mexico will meet with Mexico City Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum — the city’s first Jewish and first female mayor — to “resolve the issue,” the ministry said.

“There is an attempt by pro-Palestinian elements to disrupt Israel culture month,” the ministry said. “The embassy is working to proceed with the scheduled activities as planned.”

Forty Mexican organizations, unions, networks and diplomatic missions from the Palestinian territories, the Arab world and member states of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) protested the exhibit, the Ramallah-based BDS movement said.

“These territories are subject to Israel’s brutal military occupation. According to the resolution 242 of the United Nations Security Council, passed in 1967, these territories are considered occupied and therefore do not belong to Israel,” BDS said.

One of the photographs features a camel overlooking the Mount of Olives in front of the Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem’s Old City.

Mexico considers areas over the pre-1967 lines, i.e. the territories captured by Israel in the defensive Six-Day War in June 1967, as “occupied.”

The exhibit is part of an ongoing season of cultural events sponsored by Israel’s embassy in Mexico. The BDS protests also succeeded in cancelling an Israeli dance performance that was planned for May 15, which coincides with the Palestinian “Nakba” Day, the day that commemorates the “catastrophe” of the establishment of the State of Israel.

Tribestan UK tells Israeli man his order has been cancelled “because the Jews rob us” and “scam the world”

An Israeli man has posted on Facebook an antisemitic e-mail he received from Tribestan UK when he attempted to order a product from them. Rather than shipping his order, he was sent a refund notice along with the message: “We don’t ship to Israel because the Jews rob us! Sorry but that’s a fact! They scam the world. No offence.”

When contacted by the man’s friends, the company claimed that “our e-mail got hacked via wifi over a business phone”, which is a common excuse that we have heard from other companies that have sent antisemitic messages that they later claimed were the work of hackers.

Stephen Silverman, Director of Investigations and Enforcement at Campaign Against Antisemitism, said: “This is a brazen case of antisemitic abuse and discrimination. Tribestan’s Chief Executive, Daniel Davies, has now told us that they were ‘hacked via wifi over a business phone’ and that it was the hacker who issued the refund and sent an e-mail saying orders to Israel will not be fulfilled because ‘the Jews rob us’ and ‘scam the world’. We hear that excuse all too often from antisemites who get caught. We are in touch with the recipient of the e-mail and reviewing legal options with our lawyers.”

Sky News Arabia suggests AJ+ bowed to Israeli pressure in nixing Holocaust video

Sky News Arabia – a joint venture between the UK-based Sky News and the UAE-based Abu Dhabi Media Investment Corporation – seized the opportunity to highlight the failure of its powerful competitor from the neighboring peninsula. However, its May 20th online report, “On Israel’s Behalf – Qatari Aljazeera expels two officials”, reveals much about Sky News Arabia’s true motivation in criticising Aljazeera’s conduct.

The most telling detail in the report is its title. Framing Aljazeera’s disciplinary action as a step that was taken “on behalf of Israel” suggests that taking a stand against Holocaust denial is not a moral imperative in and of itself, but merely a position taken under Zionist pressure. This impression is reinforced in the body of the report, where the Israeli foreign ministry is the only source quoted to have criticized the video, leaving the impression that the ministry triggered Aljazeera’s actions (emphasis by CAMERA Arabic):

“The Qatari network ‘Al-Jazeera’ has suspended two of its journalists on Sunday, over a video production about the Jewish Holocaust which, according to the network, had ‘violated its editorial criteria and guidelines.’ It caused the network to come under bitter criticism from the Israeli foreign ministry.
It should be noted that the official [twitter] account of the Israeli foreign ministry released 21 tweets following the video’s broadcast, in which it criticized ‘the lies of al-Jazeera’.”

Another suspicious element of the report is revealed once it is compared to the AFP report it credits for providing the descriptions of the video itself. Sky News Arabia used the AFP phrasing word-for-word, apart from one sentence it omitted (the second sentence below, emphasis added):
“The video, published by the AJ+ channel belonging to ‘Al-Jazeera’, indicated that the ‘narrative’ that the Nazis murdered six million Jews ‘was endorsed by the Zionist movement.’

The Nazis systematically murdered six million Jews during WWII. [this sentence was omitted by Sky News Arabia – CAMERA Arabic]

Photos of Holocaust survivors on exhibit in Vienna vandalized for 3rd time

An exhibit of photos of Holocaust survivors lining a major street in downtown Vienna, Austria, was vandalized for a third time on Monday.

Holes were cut into the portraits of the survivors taken by German-Italian photographer and filmmaker Luigi Toscano, days after some were defaced with swastikas and cut into with knives, according to Die Presse, a Vienna-based German-language daily newspaper.

The portraits have been on display since May 7. The exhibit is scheduled to be taken down at the end of the month.

About one-third of the photos were vandalized.

In a post on Facebook, Toscano wrote: “I’m just speechless, again there was an attack on my photos. Austria, what’s wrong with you?”

Muslims, Catholics, activists team up to protect Holocaust exhibit in Vienna

Muslim, Catholic and artist activists teamed up on Monday to protect an exhibit of photos of Holocaust survivors in central Vienna after vandals targeted them for a third time.

The exhibit, which has been running since May 7, includes portraits by German-Italian photographer Luigi Toscano. It has been defaced three times with swastikas and cut with knives.

On Monday, after the attack was discovered, local artists from the Nesterval theater group said they would help provide 24-hour protection to the dozens of posters. They were joined by Catholic youth from Caritas and Muslim youth.

“We decided yesterday when we heard the news in the morning that we must do something after it was destroyed,” said a woman who goes by the name Frau Loefberg, an artistic alias. “I am from a theater group in Vienna and we have a big group of actors and performers here and we began asking them if they will participate.” She says that they have volunteered to keep a vigil near the posters until the exhibit ends on Friday.

Muslim youth from the group Muslimische Jugend Osterreich also came.

Loefberg said she heard in the morning about the vandalism. She said there are more than 60 posters and nine were defaced. They have now set about repairing them and gathering to make sure that no one attacks the exhibit again. The artist also came by to see the damage on Tuesday, according to locals.

Loefberg said that seeing the solidarity of different religious groups is inspiring.

Swastikas painted at Jewish Buenos Aires barbershop

Swastikas were painted in front of a Jewish-owned barbershop “Javerim” in the traditional Jewish neighborhood of Villa Crespo in Buenos Aires.

The hair salon Javerim, the Hebrew word for friends, is a neighborhood icon. The swastikas were discovered on Saturday morning.

Argentina’s national secretary for Human Rights, Claudio Avruj, denounced the incident.

“I reject any type of discriminatory or xenophobic behavior, and I encourage you to continue working for an Argentina with a mosaic of identities where we all live together in peace and harmony,” Avruj tweeted.

In addition to the swastikas, a neo-Nazi pamphlet was hung near the store.

Argentina’s Federal Police and the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights are investigating the incident, which appears to be part of a wave on anti-Semitic attacks in the Argentinean capital. One week ago a man wearing a kippah was beaten and subject to anti-Semitic epithets on a street in Buenos Aires.

French students smash Jewish headstones; police say it wasn’t anti-Semitic

Drunk students smashed several headstones at the only functioning Jewish cemetery in Bordeaux last Friday, police said, but said that it was not an anti-Semitic incident.

The three male students, one of whom was arrested, smashed the headstones Friday night at the Portuguese Jewish Cemetery of the southwestern French city, some of them by jumping on them, a police source told the French AFP news agency.

The student who was arrested was caught because he was injured while smashing the headstones. He stopped a passerby for help and the passerby called police, according to the report.

“At face value, this had nothing to do with anti-Semitism,” the police official said. The report did not quote the officer as proposing any other explanation for the vandalism.

2 men get prison for Auschwitz slain sheep nude protest

A Polish court has sentenced two Belarusian men to prison for a 2017 stunt in which they and other young adults stripped naked at Auschwitz and chained themselves together to the main gate as one of them slaughtered a sheep.

The District Court in Krakow on Tuesday confirmed that the man who killed the sheep, Adam Bialiatski, was sentenced to a year in prison for animal cruelty and desecrating a site of memory, while a second man, Mikita Valadzko, was given eight months. Nine other participants were ordered to pay fines. The verdicts are final.

Bialiatski, who plunged a knife into the sheep multiple times, is the son of a prominent human rights activist in Belarus, Ales Bialiatski. He and Valadzko called their actions at the former Nazi death camp an “artistic performance” aimed at protesting the wars in Ukraine and Syria.

“Our Ukrainian brothers and sisters are still dying,” Bialiatski told The Associated Press in an interview last year. “We thought if we do this performance art in a place like Auschwitz, we will attract attention to the war.”

Intel launches new processors that bring AI to the PC, sired by Haifa team

US tech giant Intel Corp. said Tuesday it has released a new generation of processors that bring broad-scale artificial intelligence to the PC for the first time. The processors were developed by Intel’s Israel team in Haifa.

The new 10th Gen Intel Core processors, code-named Ice Lake, are now shipping and are targeted to laptops and PCs. The processors will be in computers by the end of 2019, the company said in a statement.

The processors are built on the company’s 10nm (nanometers) process technology, new “Sunny Cove” core architecture and new Gen11 graphics architecture. They optimize built-in intelligent performance features that make it possible for PCs to quickly learn and adapt to what users do.

The processors have accelerated AI performance, twice the graphic performance and almost three times faster wireless speeds than the previous generation of processors created by Intel, the statement said.

HP Installing Malware Protection by Israeli Startup Deep Instinct on All PCs

HP will be installing malware protection software by Tel Aviv-based Deep Instinct on its newest line of personal computers, the two companies announced Tuesday. While the financial details of the deal were not disclosed, a person familiar with the matter who spoke to Calcalist on condition of anonymity said the deal is valued at $150 million over a four-year period.

Just as each HP personal computer comes equipped with an Intel processor, each new HP computer will come installed with Deep Instinct’s technology, Deep Instinct CEO Guy Caspi told Calcalist in a Monday interview.

Dubbed HP Sure Sense, Deep Instinct’s deep learning-based predictive threat prevention software works both on and offline. Deep Instinct’s technology enables real-time cyber protection across all endpoints, servers, mobile devices, and operating systems, Caspi said.

SodaStream Hosts 3,000 Bedouin, Jews, US Ambassador, in Ramadan Iftar Feast

SodaStream, the manufacturer of fizzy drink-machines and other bubbly products, on Monday night hosted close to 3,000 Bedouin and Jews in an Iftar, the Ramadan fast-ending meal, at its factory in the Bedouin city of Rahat in southern Israel.

Bedouin and Jewish Israelis, as well as some Arab guests from the PA, attended the feast on Monday together with US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman.

Ambassador Friedman later tweeted about the event: “Tonight I had the pure joy to attend the Ramadan Peace Festival at SodaStream’s factory in the Negev. Muslims, Druze, Christians and Jews working together, each making the other better, happier and more prosperous. This is peace!”

Back in 2015, SodaStream was forced shut its factory in Israel’s liberated territories in response to calls to boycott its product abroad, and opened a new facility in the predominantly Bedouin city of Rahat.

In 2018, PepsiCo purchased SodaStream for $3.2 billion.

Bob Bernstein, HRW founder who later slammed its anti-Israel bias, dies at 96

Robert Bernstein, an ardent American defender of political dissent and freedom of expression who led publisher Random House and founded Human Rights Watch during the Cold War, died Monday, The New York Times reported. He was 96.

The newspaper cited Bernstein’s son Peter as confirming his death at a hospital in New York.

During his time at the helm of Random House — now part of Penguin Random House — Bernstein published US authors such as Toni Morrison, Dr. Seuss and Gore Vidal, Soviet dissidents Andrei Sakharov and Yelena Bonner, and Czech dissenter Vaclav Havel.

The business became one of the largest general interest book publishers during his tenure from 1966 to 1990, according to the Times, with revenues growing from $40 million to $850 million annually.

In 2009, Bernstein — who is Jewish — turned against Human Rights Watch, accusing the organization he helped found in 1978 of being biased against Israel.

He said the group had condemned “far more” human rights abuses in Israel than in other countries in the Middle East ruled by “authoritarian regimes with appalling human rights records.”

“When I stepped aside in 1998, Human Rights Watch was active in 70 countries, most of them closed societies,” Bernstein wrote then in the Times.

“Now the organization, with increasing frequency, casts aside its important distinction between open and closed societies.” (h/t IsaacStorm)

Human Rights in the Middle East – by Robert L. Bernstein

In closing, let me go back to my days with Colonel Peterson. When the war ended in 1945, the Allies had destroyed 66 Japanese cities. 65% of Tokyo residences were destroyed; 90% in the third-largest city of Nagoya. Three million Japanese civilians and soldiers were killed, 4-1/2 million wounded. But the war had truly ended and brutal as it was, it was over. Building rather than destruction became the aim. Think about it, only twenty-five years later, in the 1980s, Toyota and Nissan and all Japan had become an economic success as a democratic state threatening nobody.

Last week, I read that the first 5-star hotel for businessmen opened in the West Bank. I read of other businesses starting up there. It is a small start but the economy is looking up. Recently, a book called Start-Up Nation told the story of Israel’s business success. It has registered 7,600 patents in its 60-year history. The 22 Arab states have registered 700, about 30 per state. The West Bank before Arafat’s Intifada had an open border with Israel and at some point, Mr. Abbas and Mr. Fayyad, if they are to succeed, will have to address the issue of hate. As for Gaza, it is certainly appropriate in Nebraska to quote Warren Buffet. In fact, getting to the end of a speech without mentioning him I consider extraordinary. One of his clear, direct, concise statements could apply to Gaza: “You can’t make a good deal with bad people.” However, if the West Bank starts to compete with Israel in building rather than destroying, they will have better lives for themselves, and to their surprise, they will have the free world, including Israel, helping them. The campuses of America should be thinking harder about what human rights organizations are doing. Are they helping the peace process?

In closing, let me make a statement to whichever students choose to listen: When I was in Israel, I talked to 18 year-olds, both boys and girls, who were not going to college but instead were going into the army for three years and then for one month a year until 45 or 50 years old. They’ve been doing this for 60 years. And most of them have faced some kind of danger during that period. They are not involved in the peace process. They are involved in the defense of their country and have to hope that their government will avoid war. I also think of the Palestinian 18 year-olds – particularly those in Gaza who can’t get jobs because their economy is not thriving. I believe it is not thriving specifically because their government is bringing in arms and Israel is trying to stop them. And their government is preaching genocide. Many of these students can’t afford college and that leaves jihad as their only opportunity. If college students can help bring the human rights movement back to trying to make the Universal Declaration of Human Rights truly universal in the Middle East, they will be making a valuable contribution.

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