September 25, 2022

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08/03 Links Pt2: IDF reservists group takes stance against Haaretz; Stuff that Israel-Haters Say

From Ian:

Palestinian Olympians deserve better than Jibril Rajoub
‘The goal of Olympism,” proclaims the Olympic Charter, “is to place sport at the service of the harmonious development of humankind, with a view to promoting a peaceful society concerned with the preservation of human dignity.”
Well, that’s one approach. Jibril Rajoub takes a somewhat different view.
Rajoub, a longtime senior official of Fatah, the militant Palestinian faction founded by Yasser Arafat, harshly condemns efforts to promote good will through athletics, at least when the athletes include Israelis. “Any activity of normalization in sports with the Zionist enemy,” he declares, “is a crime against humanity.”
When the Peres Center for Peace hosted a soccer match between Palestinian and Israeli kids in 2014, the children enjoyed themselves immensely — “I love it when we play together like this,” 11-year-old Qusay, a Palestinian boy, told an AFP reporter. But Rajoub was furious. It was “a disgrace to use sports for this purpose,” he thundered, and issued a “demand that all individuals and institutions distance themselves from such activities.” He was equally implacable when the president of the Barcelona Football Club, during a good-will tour of Israel and the Palestinian Authority, proposed a match between the renowned Spanish team and a squad of Israeli and Palestinian players.
“Impossible, impossible!” exclaimed Rajoub in a Palestinian TV interview. “Impossible that there be any sport-related contact with the Israeli side, in any situation.”

Honest Reporting: Stuff that Israel-Haters Say

Atlantic Columnist Jeffrey Goldberg Sparks Twitter Frenzy With Harsh Criticism of ‘Hateful’ Haaretz Invective Against Israel

A renowned liberal American columnist announced on Tuesday that he was done reading the left-wing Israeli daily Haaretz, due to its “sub-par” articles and “hateful invective” against Israel, which, he said, is exploited by antisemites to illustrate the ills of the Jews and the Jewish state.
The Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg, famous in particular for his highly publicized one-on-one interviews with US President Barack Obama, aroused the ire of Haaretz reporters and editors when he tweeted his intention to take a breather from the publication, explaining his move by linking to a recent op-ed in the paper titled, “We’re American Jewish Historians. This Is Why We’ve Left Zionism Behind,” written by Hasia Diner and Marjorie N. Feld.
When called to task by an angry Haaretz reporter, Anshel Pfeffer, Goldberg responded: “Look, when neo-Nazis are e-mailing me links to Haaretz op-eds declaring Israel to be evil, I’m going to take a break, sorry.” This tweet was accompanied by a link to a piece by notorious Israeli far-Left columnist Gideon Levy, titled: “Stop living in denial, Israel is an evil state.”
@AnshelPfeffer Look, when neo-Nazis are e-mailing me links to Haaretz op-eds declaring Israel to be evil, I’m going to take a break, sorry.
— Jeffrey Goldberg (@JeffreyGoldberg) August 2, 2016

After Haaretz readers and writers continued to attack Goldberg for his criticism, he tweeted: “I like a lot of the people at Haaretz, and many of its positions, but the cartoonish anti-Israelism and anti-Semitism can be grating.”

IDF reservists group takes stance against Haaretz

The IDF reservists group Reservists at the Front is taking aim at the Haaretz newspaper as part of its new campaign against the international boycott movement against Israel, which launches on Wednesday.
The campaign will distribute 20,000 copies of a publication similar in design to Haaretz, containing a selection of anti-Israel articles published by that newspaper. The items featured include calls by Haaretz publisher Amos Schocken to the international community to pressure Israel; headlines such as “Israel is an evil state”; “Human beasts, child killers”; and “Judeo-Nazis,” and columns by Gideon Levy and other writers. The pamphlet bears the slogan: “Stay in Israel, leave Haaretz behind,” which in the original Hebrew is a play on words.
According to Reservists at the Front, Haaretz has become a mouthpiece for hateful propaganda against the State of Israel and the IDF. The group argues that supporters of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement frequently use reports and items from the paper to demonize Israel.
“The BDS [movement] often uses these articles, and it’s important that the public know that,” explains Maj. Amit Deri (ret.), chairman of Reservists at the Front.

Baroness Royall report reveals Oxford Labour students engaged in antisemitism

The JC has obtained Baroness Royall’s full report into allegations of antisemitism among Labour-supporting students at Oxford University.
It finds that members of the Oxford University Labour Club (OULC) did engage in antisemitic acts.
“There have been some incidents of antisemitic behaviour,” Baroness Royall writes.
“Some Jewish members do not feel comfortable attending the [OULC] meetings, let alone participating,” she added.
Baroness Royall said some of the antisemitic activity members engaged in was conducted outside the group’s structure, potentially limiting OULC’s scope to act.
But she adds: “I regret that the incidences of antisemitism were not reported to any authority, including the Labour Party, as soon as the allegations were made. In some cases this makes it very difficult to verify.”
The Labour peer’s report had previously been suppressed by Labour’s National Executive Committee.
Baroness Royall said she had “no doubt” the report would “be a great disappointment to the Jewish community for which I have a very high regard.

Michael Lumish: Brief Note: “Long Live the Intifada!”

It has to be understood by politicians and educators that when Arab students, and their white western allies, gather in quads in Europe and the United States, within their respective universities, and wave around Palestinian flags and chant “Intifada! Intifada! Long live the intifada!,” that they are quite literally calling for the murder of Jews.
This latest intifada over in Israel has been particularly fun. They call it “the stabbing intifada” or “the car ramming intifada” but whatever they call it, it means killing Jews.
Now, it could be that university administrators tend to think that the effort on the part of Israeli Arabs to kill Jewish people is a good thing because it represents righteous resistance to the “Occupation”… with the Big O.
Or, it could be that, as university administrators, they’re just stone-cold ignorant.
It is hard to know.
One thing is certain, however, Arab students throughout the United States and Europe are screeching for the blood of Jews and university administrators, such as professor Leslie Wong at San Francisco State University, could hardly care less.

Book Review: The Angel by Uri Bar-Joseph

Israeli intelligence agencies knew something was brewing. But they did not understand that Sadat’s only goal, six years after the humiliation of the Six-Day War, was to seize a strip of land on the eastern side of the Suez Canal to compel the world to take Egypt’s claims to the Suez seriously. Bar-Joseph assigns most of the blame for this to General Eli Zeira, the military intelligence chief who dismissed almost all of the intelligence that the Mossad received from its man in Cairo.
The author suggests that the spy’s violent death was a result of Zeira’s choice, as a retired general, to break all the rules of espionage by revealing Marwan’s name. Marwan had become a wealthy, if shady, entrepreneur based in London. His fall from his own balcony could have been an accident or suicide. Scotland Yard could never figure out why Marwan fell, or whether he was pushed.
Bar-Joseph’s book is an uneven read, unfortunately, with repetitions that more-stringent editing could have eliminated. Some of the paragraphs have to be reread to clarify who met with whom and which Egyptians and Israelis claim that Marwan was good or bad, heroic or corrupt. Many readers won’t want to go to the trouble of wading through an ocean of complicated details and overly long paragraphs, but the total tale is rewarding to anyone interested in Middle East intrigue.
The overall story is fascinating. Israel’s success as a nation in its 68 years has depended mostly on raw talent, skill and courage, especially compared with the deficiencies of the surrounding countries that have tried to wipe it out. Yet this book reminds us of the huge value of luck. The Mossad was lucky that President Nasser’s son-in-law phoned the Israeli Embassy in London to offer his services, and luckier still that he sold them an amazing library of secrets about Egypt and other Arab countries for nearly 30 years.
But Bar-Joseph’s deeply researched account leads us to the conclusion that Israel would have been even luckier—saving thousands of lives and avoiding Soviet and American nuclear alerts during a long Yom Kippur War—had they believed their spy.

A Muslim Officer Fights for His Right to Defend the Jewish State

Major Alaa Waheeb is a tough career officer in the Israel Defense Forces who bears a striking resemblance to Theodor Herzl. In addition to his looks, he shares a dream in common with Zionism’s founder. “For as long as I can remember,” he told me, “I’ve always had this dream: to be like everyone else.”
Waheeb’s path to the IDF began at the age of 12, when a riot started in his hometown of Reineh in the Galilee. Angry youth threw Molotov cocktails on the road as wailing Border Police jeeps arrived on the scene. “I remember myself going out with the guys, clutching a stone,” he recalled. “I can see myself looking at it and asking: What are you doing? What are you going to destroy? Burn another bank? Another Dumpster? What good will that do? So I discarded the stone and went home, becoming the so-called chicken of my group.”
Waheeb—who until recently oversaw the Ground Operations’ vast training zone in the Negev Desert—will readily admit he is still considered an odd bird both within the Israeli army and in his Muslim-Arab community. But that preteen moment would shape his decision to forgo his given group identity and become an Israeli through service in the IDF. His unique family history sheds some light on Waheeb’s decision to join a military force that is still officially at war with his brethren across the border. His father, a Syrian from Aleppo, migrated with his family to Mandate Palestine in 1937 as a 4-year-old, settling in the religious Jewish community of Yavne’el on the southern shores of the Sea of Galilee.
Waheeb’s close relations with his Jewish neighbors would later prompt him to join the Border Police, an unusual move for an Israeli-Arab in the 1970s and 1980s. “He was considered a strange alien in his society,” his son said. Years passed, and Mr. Waheeb relocated with his father and two brothers to the Arab village of Reineh, where he took Alaa’s mother—a devout Muslim—as his second wife. Despite growing up among his mother’s conservative clan, Alaa was sent to a Christian school in nearby Nazareth, which he says shaped his liberal worldview. But as he neared the end of his studies and had to decide on the next move, the ideological differences between his parents came to the fore.

Hezbollah fools Israeli leaders into appearing in Lebanon war TV feature

Hezbollah fooled three senior Israeli officials and a wounded soldier into giving interviews for its documentary on the 2006 Second Lebanon War. The Lebanese-based terror group fought Israel for 34 days following the abduction of two IDF soldiers along the Israel-Lebanon border.
According to a report by the Yedioth Ahronoth daily on Tuesday, an Italian reporter interviewed former defense minister Amir Peretz, former foreign minister Tzipi Livni and Maj. Gen. (res.) MK Eyal Ben-Reuven, telling them the footage would be broadcast on the BBC and Italian television.
But reporter Michela Moni insisted he was also misled, maintaining the Palestinian producer who gave him the job told him the footage was for the BBC and Al-Jazeera.
On Saturday, al-Mayadeen, a television channel affiliated with the Shiite organization, broadcast previously unreleased footage of Hezbollah fighters training for the attack that launched the Second Lebanon War.

IDF veteran: I was duped into giving interview for Hezbollah film

Tomer Weinberg, an IDF veteran who was wounded in a 2006 Hezbollah ambush, remarked Wednesday on being featured in a Hezbollah documentary series that was recently launched.
Weinberg survived the attack in which IDF soldiers Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev were kidnapped. Three of his comrades were killed in the attack, which sparked a war between Israel and Hezbollah in July, 2006.
On Saturday, the Lebanese Al Mayadeen television network, affiliated with Hezbollah, broadcast the first installment of a three-part documentary series marking a decade since the Second Lebanon War. The makers of the series promised to show “never before seen footage” of the Regev and Goldwasser abduction.
In a Facebook post, Weinberg, who was interviewed in the documentary, clarified that he was not aware that he was cooperating with Hezbollah when he gave the interview. He explained that the reporter who interviewed him misrepresented himself as an Italian journalist and had pursued him for four months.
“Anyone acquainted with me knows how much I keep my distance from the media,” he wrote. “How bad it makes me feel.

GPO investigating Italian who tricked Israeli officials into Hezbollah interview

The Government Press Office is taking steps against the Italian ANSA news agency and against journalist Michela Moni for allegedly working for Hezbollah. Moni interviewed a slew of Israeli government officials for what turned out to be a Hezbollah special detailing how the terror group kidnapped and killed two Israeli soldiers, thus starting the Second Lebanon War.
Moni managed to interview the Former Head of Military Intelligence Amos Yadlin, Former Defense Minister Amir Peretz, MK Tzipi Livni, and MK Eyal Ben-Reuven, seemingly at the behest of the Lebanese terror group.
Further adding salt to the wound, Moni even allegedly offered Tomer Weinburg – one of the survivors of the attack and who currently suffers from PTSD – $2,000 to be filmed in front of Hezbollah footage of the attack taking place following an interview with him.
Moni, who typically works as a freelance writer, was able to trick people into interviews by claiming that the interviews would be broadcasted in Italy.
“This is a severe situation which borders on fraud and misrepresentation, and which goes against professional journalistic standards,” said Nitzan Chen, Head of the Government Press Office.

Honest Reporting: Setups, Lies & Videotape

Al-Mayadeen is known in the Arab world as part of the “axis of opposition” media, which includes Hezbollah’s Al-Manar TV station. This Shiite media axis staunchly supports Bashar Assad and Iran, and also prides itself on countering Al-Jazeera’s Sunni-leaning agenda.
None of the Israelis would have agreed to be interviewed by Moni had they known they would be appearing in a Hezbollah mouthpiece’s “documentary.” Asked how his work wound up in al-Mayadeen’s hands, Moni gave contradictory explanations (more on that below).
(Al-Mayadeen’s full documentary is on YouTube. The overall narration is in Arabic; interviews with Israelis, and sections featuring news footage of Americans, are in Hebrew and English, respectively.)
Troubling Questions
Did Michela Moni know he was essentially working for Hezbollah?
Was he fooled by the terror group or its media supporters and merely used as a pawn? Or is there some other explanation entirely?
Moni defended his actions by telling several contradictory stories about how this strange sequence of events came to be.
Working with, for, or in support of a terror organization is a crime. Hezbollah is designated as a terror organization by most of the Western world, including Israel (where Moni was working) and its “military wing” is so designated by the European Union (where Moni is from).

Hillary and Israel, a 3-month romance

Clinton will likely try to subtly separate herself from Obama in the next three months, at least when it comes to Israel. She might signal that Israel might get a better deal from her than from President Obama with regard to the renegotiation underway for Israel’s foreign aid. Obama wants to require all the allocated money to be spent in the U.S. and to cut off supplemental spending supported by Congress for missile defense or other purposes. In other words, Obama wants to weaken Israel’s defense industry and remove Congress from the equation, putting all the power in the president’s hands.
Just as Obama worked to weaken pro-Israel influence in Congress by greenlighting J Street, and castrating AIPAC (especially on the Iran deal), the policy on the defense assistance doubles down on the effort to change the political calculus on Israel in Congress.
A fair number of pro-Israel voters, among them a high percentage of Jewish Republicans, are reasonably sophisticated about these policy nuances. Clinton will be happy to make Israel one of the loves of her life the next 100 days, since there may be an electoral reward for the effort.

Julian Assange Says He Has ‘Proof’ Hillary Clinton Had a Hand in Arming ISIS

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange is again giving interviews, claiming that he’s about to release emails that show Hillary Clinton accidentally armed ISIS attackers in Syria.
Speaking to Democracy Now! media, Assange said that his new documents (coupled with emails already available from the State Department, thanks to a Freedom of Information Act request) will demonstrate Clinton’s woefully inept handling of Middle East policy.
He claims that once the entire catalog of communication is available, her most disastrous efforts in Libya and Syria will become clear.
So, those Hillary Clinton emails, they connect together with the cables that we have published of Hillary Clinton, creating a rich picture of how Hillary Clinton performs in office, but, more broadly, how the U.S. Department of State operates. So, for example, the disastrous, absolutely disastrous intervention in Libya, the destruction of the Gaddafi government, which led to the occupation of ISIS of large segments of that country, weapons flows going over to Syria, being pushed by Hillary Clinton, into jihadists within Syria, including ISIS, that’s there in those emails.
Proving Clinton had a hand in arming ISIS, however accidentally, is a tall order even for Assange. But if he is somehow able to demonstrate that she had knowledge of an arms operation running guns to Syrian rebels, she could be on the hook for lying under oath to Congressional investigators.

Clueless Green Party Chief Elizabeth May Condemns Anti-Semitism–AND Israel

Ms. May, alas, didn’t get the memo that the Jew-hate of our time gloms onto Israel and its manifold iniquities in much the same way that earlier forms of “the longest hatred” cast aspersions on “the Joooos.” Had she the remotest glimmer of a clue re Israel-hate and how it animates so much of leftist ideology today, she could not and would not have written this (in the National Post):

No it isn’t. What’s “dangerous” is the failure to understand the true nature of Israel-hate. What’s “dangerous” is being a Useful Idiot for the jihad that aims to wipe out the Jewish state for having the temerity to exist on a tiny plot of land in Dar al Islam, the domain of the one true faith. The question to pose, therefore, is not “why can’t we criticize Israel?” but “why are we singling out Israel for criticism?” There is little reason to believe, however, that that’s a question that Ms. May can answer with any genuine awareness, not even if, as she insists, she’s a close personal friend of Irwin Cotler, a Jew (having no awareness, obviously, of how weaselly and insincere that “some of my best friends are Jewish” line comes across).
And that malarkey about being foursquare for “free speech”? By now, we know how that operates in the nosebleed section of leftism wherein the Greenies reside: people have “free speech” up the wazoo– provided they use it to trash Israel. If, however, you want to say something that’s out of step with the strictures of political correctness, best o’ luck speaking up in Green precincts, where you will be shouted down post haste.

Fringe Washington gubernatorial candidate decries Jewish power

A fringe candidate for governor of Washington state calls Israel “an illegitimate terror state” and the Holocaust a “Holohoax.”
The centerpiece of the campaign of David Blomstrom, a former wildlife biologist, is to inform the public about what he calls “Jewarchy,” defined on its own website as “the inordinate power possessed by Jews, or, more precisely, certain groups of Jews. Examples include Zionists, the Jews who control Hollywood, the Jews many believe control the global economy and the numerous Jews in powerful U.S. government positions, particularly those with dual U.S.-Israeli citizenship.”
Blomstrom is one of 11 gubernatorial candidates in Washington.
In a candidates’ booklet distributed by the state of Washington, Blomstrom writes: “I may be the only candidate in the nation who’s taking on the Jewish Mafia and likely the only one holding Bill Gates accountable as well. My campaign may even put a new word in the dictionary: jewarchy.”
In a statement on the Orlando nightclub shootings, Blomstrom blamed such shootings and terror attacks on Jews.

Black Lives Matter Platform: Israel an ‘Apartheid State’ Carrying Out ‘Genocide’

The newly released platform of a group claiming association with the Black Lives Matter movement declares that Israel is an “apartheid state” that “practices systematic discrimination,” including “genocide … against the Palestinian people.”
The platform makes the accusations against only the Jewish state.
The document, posted online Monday, includes an extensive foreign policy section titled “Invest-Divest.” Substantial parts of the section are devoted to Israel and to what the group believes is a joint U.S.-Israeli campaign of global terror, militarization, and war.
“The US justifies and advances the global war on terror via its alliance with Israel and is complicit in the genocide taking place against the Palestinians,” the document says. The United States, the group says, “is an empire that uses war to expand territory and power. American wars are unjust, destructive to Black communities globally and do not keep Black people safe locally.”
The platform document promotes the Boycott, Divest, and Sanction (BDS) movement, which seeks to cripple Israel economically. The document lists as “resources” for readers the names of several leading BDS groups and calls on its members to fight against anti-BDS bills under consideration in several state legislatures. As a policy recommendation, the platform calls for an end of U.S. aid to Israel.

Spanish Israel lobby group deals triple blow to BDS movement in Spain

ACOM, an Israel lobby group working to combat BDS in Spain, has dealt a triple blow to the boycott movement this past week, garnering three legal victories throughout the country.
The group claimed its first victory after a court ruling suspended the effects of a local boycott against Israel in the Olesa municipality on the outskirts of Barcelona.
The Court acknowledged that local boycott agreements against Israel may be brought before Spanish courts, thereby rebutting points contained in a report being disseminated among city halls, commissioned by the Solidarity Network against the Occupation of Palestine (Red Solidaria contra la Ocupación de Palestina), an umbrella group of pro-BDS supporters.
The judge stated that a local boycott agreement produced legal effects, even if no measures are actually taken and if there is only the potential for such actions.
“The sheer existence of a local agreement of this nature implies the possibility of denying participation to any entity or person of Israeli nationality or origin in any contract or activity sponsored by the City Council”, the judge stated.
A few days later, a Madrid Court suspended boycott agreements against Israel adopted by the Rivas Vaciamadrid City Council.

Oberlin Places Anti-Semitic Professor on Leave

Oberlin College has placed professor Joy Karega on paid leave pending an investigation into anti-Semitic statements she made on social media, the college said in a statement today. She will not teach at Oberlin this coming fall semester.
Karega attained notoriety over the last year when her anti-Jewish Facebook postings came to light. Among other assertions, Karega dubbed ISIS a “CIA and Mossad operation,” posted a video asserting that Israel perpetrated 9/11, claimed the Jewish state downed Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, said the Mossad perpetrated the Charlie Hebdo attacks, and shared an anti-Semitic meme of Jewish banker Jacob Rothschild that declared, “We own your news, the media, your oil, and your government.”
Oberlin’s move to suspend Karega from teaching marks the first concrete step taken by its administration towards addressing Karega’s bigotry. As Tablet reported, after the college was informed about the professor’s anti-Semitic outbursts in January by alumni, it remained silent for a month until the media reported on Karega’s postings and forced the issue.
Moreover, as Tablet and other outlets have documented, Karega’s conduct reflects a broader climate of anti-Semitism at Oberlin that has gone unaddressed for years. Notably, Karega was hired to teach “social justice writing” to undergraduates by a small search committee that included two of Oberlin’s associate deans, all of whom failed to recognize her bigotry.
Whether Karega will serve as a scapegoat for Oberlin’s institutional problems when it comes to Jews, or whether she will be the catalyst for a broader reckoning on anti-Semitism, remains to be seen.

Israel deports Swiss BDS activist

For the first time, a Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) activist was on Tuesday deported from Israel, Channel 2 News reports.
Soon after she landed at the Ben Gurion International Airport, the activist from Switzerland, who is a member of a Christian organization which works in cooperation with the BDS movement, was taken in for questioning and then deported, after Interior Minister Aryeh Deri (Shas) issued a deportation order against her.
According to Channel 2 News the activist, Rita Faye, visited Israel several times in the past and is known to the IDF mainly from her activities at checkpoints in the Jericho area. In the past, Faye would harass the soldiers stationed in the area and record their activities. She would then send the information she collected abroad.
The deportation order was issued by Deri after the IDF received information that she intends to return to Israel, the report said.
This marks the first time that a deportation order has been issued against BDS activists who hail from Europe. Officials in the Interior Ministry officials said there is a possibility that deportation orders against BDS activists will be adopted as a method to fight organizations calling for a boycott of Israel. (h/t Yenta Press)

Analysis: The rise of German academic BDS

A German university seminar designed to teach that Israel harvests Palestinians’ organs ignited a new debate about anti-Semitism this week. There is, however, a kind of poverty to the discussion.
Anti-Semitism without anti-Semites largely captures the parameters of the debate permitted in Germany. Tagging a person as an anti-Semite is a no-go area, for the most part. But labeling non-animate works as filled with Jew-hatred is still within the bounds of accepted discourse in the Federal Republic.
Now, the row over the seminar has been reduced to a bottomless pit of academic relativity where modern anti-Semitism is a respectable opinion, and anti-Israel seminars stand above criticism.
“From an academic perspective, there is no justification for a ‘seminar on the social situation of young people in Palestine.’ This choice of this topic is entirely subjective and used for demonizing Israel, as is the selection of subjects such as the anti-Semitic libel of organ stealing,” Prof. Gerald Steinberg, a prominent political scientist at Bar-Ilan University, told The Jerusalem Post on Tuesday.
Steinberg added, “Universities exist to examine and educate on the basis of research – not to market the propaganda of victimization. This course is a moral and professional black flag for all students and faculty at HAWK – regardless of specialization.”
HAWK is the acronym for the German university, the University of Applied Sciences and Arts Hildesheim, where the anti-Israel course has been taught for a decade. The state government of Lower Saxony provides public funds to HAWK.

PreOccupiedTerritory: ‘Boycotting 101’ Prof Forced To Pass Student Who Boycotted Course (satire)

A Tel Aviv University faculty member who gave a failing grade to a student who boycotted his course on how to conduct a political boycott was forced to revise the mark in favor of the student after an appeal to the administration, a student group reported today.
Guy Avek, 23, claimed victory today in his weeks-long campaign to force Professor of Political Science Wanda Failim, following a ruling by the Academic Standards Committee that Mr. Avek’s actions demonstrated mastery of the course material that warranted at least a passing grade. The committee, composed of faculty and two student representatives, voted 11-2 to overrule the instructor’s claim that the student had not shown commitment to the course by attending even a single class during the spring-summer semester.
“I feel vindicated,” gushed Avek after he emerged from the committee session, where he argued his case. “There is technically no requirement to attend any of the classes – you just have to get your hands on the material somehow, and complete the assignments. I argued, and the committee of course agreed, that my boycott of the course qualified as a project for purposes of the course requirements, and should therefore be accepted.”
Avek registered for the course in How to Conduct a Political Boycott before the semester began, but then sat outside the lecture hall and specifically refused to enter it while the class was in session. Inside, Professor Failim devoted extensive attention to the Boycott, Divest, Sanctions (BDS) movement aimed at pressuring Israel, and encouraged her students to support the movement, according to course participants who did attend the classes. She assigned a project, to constitute 90% of the grade, outlining a boycott campaign in keeping with the course content.

Intel Capital invests $25m in 3 Israeli startups

Intel Capital, the global investment arm of the US-based chipmaker Intel Corp., said it has invested in three additional Israeli startups, Velostata, and Sedona Systems, for a total of $25 million, the company said in a statement., a Tel Aviv- and San Francisco-based startup, enables companies to implement complex analytics cloud infrastructure with the click of a button. The company said it raised a total of $7 million in a Series A funding round led by Intel Capital, with participation from previous investor Blumberg Capital.
Velostrata, based in San Mateo, California, with a research and development facility in Israel, has developed software that enables customers to adopt a hybrid cloud strategy that incorporates the best of both public and private clouds. The company said Wednesday that it raised a total of $17.5 million in a Series B funding round, led by strategic investor Intel Capital, with participation from existing investors Norwest Venture Partners and 83 North. This latest funding will be used to accelerate growth, particularly within the mid-to-large enterprise market, the company said.
Sedona Systems, a creator of an IP/optical converged control platform for service provider networks, said it has closed its $13.6 million round B of funding, led by Intel Capital. NextStar also joined as a new investor and previous investor Bessemer Venture Partners participated in the round. It brings the total amount invested in the company to $19.6 million.

Teva inks biggest deal in Israeli pharmaceutical industry’s history

Israeli pharmaceutical giant Teva announced Tuesday that it has finalized its acquisition of Dublin-based Allergan’s Actavis Global Generics for $40.5 billion. This is the biggest acquisition deal in the Israeli pharmaceutical industry’s history.
As part of the deal, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries acquired Actavis Global Generics’ with its U.S. and international generic commercial units, third-party supplier Medis, global generic manufacturing operations, and the global generic research and development unit as well as Allergan’s international over-the-counter commercial unit and certain established international brands, an Allergan press release said.
The deal will allow Teva to achieve cost synergies and tax savings of approximately $1.4 billion annually by the end of 2019.
Teva also expects the deal to yield $25 million in cash flow by the end of 2019, spelling a growth rate of 11% in company revenue.
Allergan is a global pharmaceutical company focused on developing, manufacturing and commercializing branded pharmaceuticals, devices and biologic products for patients around the world.

Oblivious fan sings Matisyahu song to reggae star

When Matisyahu shaved his signature Hasidic beard in 2011, he knew he would put off some of his fans. But he probably hoped they would still recognize him.
Not so much for this Hawaiian fan, who played an entire Matisyahu song in front of the ex-Orthodox reggae star without realizing who he was.
Matisyahu was in Maui for a music festival last weekend, and he happened upon a young ukelele player singing one of his greatest hits, “One Day,” at a local coffee shop. Holding a drink in his hand, Matisyahu joined in the singing. At the end of the song, Matisyahu asked the young man, “You know who wrote this song?” and pointed to himself.
Brooklyn-based musician Stu Brooks, who was at the coffee shop with Matisyahu, filmed the impromptu duet and uploaded it to Facebook. Brooks wrote in the post that the singer, named Kekoa Alama, “didn’t believe it was him and it took a second for it all to sink in.”
It all ended well: Matisyahu put Alama and his girlfriend on the guest list for his show that night.

Israel’s Munich Olympians to be memorialized in Rio

Brazilian and Israeli officials will lead a memorial ceremony to honor the victims of the Munich Massacre during this year’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
The ceremony, scheduled for August 14, will commemorate the 11 Israeli athletes and coaches killed in the 1972 terror attack as well as the two victims of a bomb at the 1996 Atlanta Games and a Georgian luger who died in an accident at the 2010 Winter Olympics.
Widows of weightlifter Yossef Romano and fencing coach Andre Spitzer are expected to attend the memorial event in the athletes’ village in Rio. A memorial stone will also be unveiled at the ceremony and will be displayed at the athletes’ village at the Tokyo 2022 Games.
For the past 44 years, Israel, the families of the victims, and many parliaments worldwide have called on the Olympic Committee to honor the Munich Massacre victims with an official minute of silence at the Opening or Closing ceremonies.
“We never will give up our hope that there will be a moment of silence at the opening ceremony,” Ankie Spitzer, Andre’s widow, told the BBC.

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