‘If they see the facts, they won’t believe Palestinian lies’
Israel’s Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon expressed great satisfaction with the visit to Israel he led in which 11 UN ambassadors representing countries from four different continents had the opportunity to observe life in Israel for themselves.
“It was a very effective visit. We managed to show them the chief challenges we’re dealing with in only four days,” Danon told Arutz Sheva.
Danon recounted that the ambassadors first visited the border with Gaza, where they saw the threat of the rockets and tunnels, and then went north to the border with Lebanon, in order to observe the threat posed by a rearming Hezbollah. Danon showed the ambassadors maps of the various Hezbollah bases that are located in the heart of local villages very close to the border, complete with rocket launchers.
Ambassador Danon claims that there is no doubting the effectiveness of these types of visits and tours. He says that it’s not a matter of gaining victory in a knockout blow but rather gaining “points” little by little, with the fruits of these efforts becoming apparent in future diplomatic struggles. Danon said that the maps and pictures he showed the ambassadors are of great value in rebuffing baseless criticisms of Israel, and that if he could he would bring all the ambassadors in the UN for a similar visit.
When asked whether any of the visiting ambassadors hailed from countries that are consistently anti-Israel, Danon replied that most of the countries were what he would call “middle-of-the-road” regarding their Israel policy, and that the great advantage in bringing their ambassadors over for a visit is in the fact that it makes it far less likely that they will turn anti-Israel in the future, as they have seen the facts on the ground first-hand, and aren’t just getting their information from pro-Palestinian propaganda.
Peace Now has long functioned almost as a defense attorney for the Palestinian Authority–vigorously demanding Israeli concessions to the PA, while refraining from criticizing the PA’s sponsorship of terrorism and its constant incitement against Jews and Israel.
Martin Bresler’s op-ed began with the usual litany of denunciations of Israel’s behavior. “The occupation is evil,” he informed Jewish Week readers. “It is immoral. It is un-Jewish.” Israel has become “the oppressor of another people.” This “twists the souls” of Israelis, and is “making the entire body [of Israel] sick.” It even “feeds anti-Semitism.”
But not to worry—Mr. Bresler has a solution. He has a six-step peace plan, and here’s step #1: “Israel can announce…that it recognizes that the occupation must end at some point, that it will do so as soon as the security situation permits, and until that time it will administer the West Bank for the benefit of its Palestinian inhabitants and its own safety.”
Martin Bresler, in the name of Americans for Peace Now, wants Israel to “administer the West Bank for the benefit of its Palestinian inhabitants.”
Right now, of course, it is the Palestinian Authority which administers 99% of the Palestinian Arab inhabitants of Judea-Samaria (the West Bank). The PA has been doing so since 1995, when then-Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin withdrew Israel’s forces from the areas, called A and B, where nearly all of the Palestinians reside. Only 4% (about 50,000) of the Arabs of Judea and Samaria still live in area C under Israeli administration, as do all the Jews.
“[W]hoever was imprisoned for five years or more is entitled to a job in a PA [Palestinian Authority] institution. Thus, the PA gives priority in job placement to people who were involved in terrorist activity.” – Yigal Carmon, president of the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), in testimony to the US House Committee on Foreign Affairs, July 6, 2016.
In 2016, not less than $300 million (between 7% and 10% of the budget) was allocated to prisoners, their families, and to “martyrs’ families.”
In June, an independent report commissioned by the Britain’s Department for International Development concluded that by enabling the PA to pay salaries to terrorists, British aid to the PA had made anti-Israel terror “more likely.” DFID dismissed the report.
Palestinian society is totally built and organized on the basis of “resistance”. It is a society where jobs, fame and money go to people who are in, or who have spent years in, Israeli jails. There, legitimacy goes to people who are considered “martyrs.”
Israeli officials were outraged after the Lebanese delegation to the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro prevented Israeli athletes from joining them on a bus to the opening ceremony on Friday.
“I am shocked by the incident in which the Israeli delegation was humiliated …. because the Lebanese delegation refused to share a bus with Israeli Jews. This is pure anti-Semitism and racism of the worst kind,” said Culture and Sport Minister Miri Regev in an interview with Army Radio Sunday.
The head of the Lebanese Olympic team, Salim al-Haj Nicola, physically blocked the entrance to the bus when the Israeli team tried to board the vehicle that was assigned to both sets of athletes.
“The International Olympic Committee, which champions the separation of sports and politics, must condemn this incident and act to prevent this type of behavior from recurring,” Regev said.
Regev spoke with Igal Carmi, the president of Israel’s Olympic Committee and clarified that Israel must not remain silent about the incident because doing so would reinforce the delegitimization of Israeli athletes. Regev noted that the subject would be raised at the next joint meeting of worldwide Olympic committee heads in an attempt to prompt an official condemnation of the incident and to prevent its recurrence.
“I am sending a warm embrace to all of our athletes who were humiliated on what was such an emotional and important day for them,” Regev said. “I support coach Udi Gal for talking about the anti-Semitic and unsportsmanlike incident. We all have a responsibility to not let this issue slip from the agenda until this phenomenon ceases to exist.”
The head of the Lebanese Olympic delegation was reprimanded by the International Olympic Committee on Sunday after refusing to let the Israeli delegation board a bus the two teams were supposed to share.
As a result, according to the original Facebook post by Israeli sailing coach Udi Gal, event organizers tried to scatter the Israeli athletes on several different buses. He called this “unacceptable for security and representative reasons.”
During the hearing on the matter, the IOC committee warned Salim al-Haj Nakoula the head of the Lebanese delegation, that they would not accept any further instances like this.
Al-Haj Nakoula responded that the whole incident was the result of a misunderstanding.
A source from the Lebanese Olympic committee told Lebanese television station Al Mayadeen on Saturday that the refusal to allow the Israeli delegation to ascend the bus on Friday was a group decision of the Lebanese Olympic delegation.
BBC audiences were not informed that Nakoula’s actions were lauded in Lebanon.
“Lebanese Minister of Youth and Sport Abdel Motaleb Hannawi told a Lebanese news site that this was not the first time Israel has attempted to embarrass a Lebanese delegation in this kind of circumstance. He praised the delegation’s behavior, Nakoula’s specifically. “His stance was principled and patriotic,” he said.
Nakoula became the hero of the day in Lebanon after the incident was publicized. The Al Mayadeen and Al-Manar news networks, both associated with Hezbollah, gave Nakoula praise, with the latter also interviewing him. Hezbollah supporters and officials praised him on social media, with one Al-Manar broadcaster tweeting, “The Israelis were sent away from the bus because normalization (with Israel) is not to be had in any form, and because the Lebanese identity (is that of) resistance. Be proud to be Lebanese.””
Neither were they informed that a similar incident occurred at the previous Olympic Games.
“The Lebanese judo team at the 2012 London Olympics refused to practice next to the Israeli one on Friday afternoon, and a makeshift barrier was erected to split their gym into two halves.”
The report also fails to note that no statement regarding the Lebanese team’s bigoted behaviour has been issued by the Olympic organising committee.
Saudi Arabian competitor Joud Fahmy forfeited her first-round judo match against Christianne Legentil from Mauritius at the Rio Olympic Games on Sunday, in what Hebrew media said was a maneuver to avoid facing Israeli judo fighter Gili Cohen in the next round.
The Saudi Olympic team tweeted that Fahmy had sustained injuries to her arm and leg during training and was advised by medical staff not to compete, the Hebrew language Ynet news site reported. According to Channel 2, Fahmy was not hurt, but simply dropped out to avoid competing against the Israeli judoka.
Cohen then lost to Legentil in a brief second-round bout later in the day.
Saudi Arabia does not recognize Israel, though an ex-Saudi general led a delegation to Jerusalem two weeks ago, and met with Israeli officials and politicians, in the latest of a series of conciliatory moves. A former Israeli cabinet minister who met the visiting group said at the weekend that normal ties between the two countries might not be too far away.
Leaving aside how there shouldn’t be a presumption of free unfettered travel between Israel and the Palestinian territories and how Palestinians themselves bear a responsibility to build necessary institutions like Olympic-sized swimming pools, HRC told the CBC that on July 20, COGAT, Israel’s Coordination of Government Activities in the Territories, refuted claims that Ms. al-Atrash could not train in Israel due to “travel restrictions”. In fact, COGAT says she can, but she never applied for a permit in the first place which would have allowed her to train in Jerusalem!
Here’s what COGAT said via its Facebook page:
“FACT CHECK: Mary al-Atrash CAN train for the Olympics in Jerusalem, if she ever applied for a permit.
The Olympic candidate, Mary al-Atrash, claimed she cannot train for the Rio Olympics due to “Israeli Restrictions”. However, we found Mary never applied for a permit to train in Jerusalem in the first place.
Rather than investigate the truth, it’s a shame that media outlets such as Mondoweiss use these stories to paint Israel in a negative light.
We wish Mary the best of luck at the 2016 Rio Olympics and hope she will come train in Jerusalem upon her return.”
CBC.ca’s article and the CBC National report failed to quote Israeli authorities on this matter and we told the CBC that it must set the record straight on how Israel refutes claims that “travel restrictions” impeded her entry to Israel to train for the Olympics. In fact, Israel claims she was welcome to train in Jerusalem, but she never applied for a permit in the first place.
Stay tuned to this page for any updates. We await the CBC’s reply to our concerns and hearing what corrective action will be taken.
PreOccupiedTerritory: Unprecedented Trouble For 2016 Games Definitely Mossad’s Doing (satire)
This year’s Olympic Summer Games, scheduled to open on August 5, have seen a level of controversy and mismanagement unmatched in all prior Olympiads, leading observers to conclude that only the Israeli secret intelligence service could have coordinated such a confluence of misfortune.
Pollution, corruption, political instability, violent crime, infrastructure problems, doping scandals, and other troubles have plagued Rio de Janeiro’s bid for the 2015 Summer Olympic Games since even before the International Olympic Committee named the city as the venue for the event, but experts believe that mere South American incompetence does not sufficiently explain the extent to which the Rio games have become a quagmire of ineptitude and poor execution. Instead, or in addition, a number of commentators point to the Mossad as the only factor capable of surreptitiously engineering such a mess.
“I’ll be the first to agree that anyone who comes from south of the Rio Grande isn’t capable of managing things,” explained Dr. David Duke, an expert on security and ethnic relations. “But dog carcasses and old tires littering the ocean near Rio, threatening the proper conduct of surfing and sailing events and endangering the health of the participating athletes? That takes things far beyond the familiar notions of Latin American clumsiness and laziness and into the realm of malice aforethought. And I think we all know who stands to gain from disaster on an international scale.”
“Just look at what happened the last time there was such a problem at the games,” concurred Jibril Rajoub, a Palestinian Olympic official, referring to the 1972 Munich Olympics, at which terrorists tortured and murdered 11 Israeli athletes. “They just…wait, I didn’t mean to say that. It defeats my whole argument. Please strike that from the record.”
Australia and Germany have suspended funding to the World Vision Evangelical Christian humanitarian aid group in response to Israeli allegations that its Gaza office had siphoned $7.2 million a year to Hamas.
Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) called the allegations “deeply troubling,” and said in a statement on Friday that it was “urgently seeking more information from World Vision and the Israeli authorities.
We are suspending the provision of further funding to World Vision for programs in the Palestinian Territories until the investigation is complete.”
There are “rigorous processes to investigate any report that aid funding has been misappropriated,” the statement said, and that Australia’s “aid to the Palestinian Territories is intended for humanitarian and development assistance to the Palestinian community. Any diversion of the generous support of the Australian and international community for military or terrorist purposes by Hamas is to be deplored and can only harm the Palestinian people.”
The Islamic State group claimed responsibility Sunday for an attack that wounded two policewomen in the Belgian city of Charleroi, saying the machete-wielding assailant was a “soldier” of the group.
Quoting an unidentified source, the IS-linked Amaq Agency said Saturday’s attack came “in response to calls to target citizens” belonging to countries in a US-led coalition bombing IS in Syria and Iraq.
The assailant died on Saturday after being shot by officers. Police said on Sunday he was a 33-year-old Algerian with the initials K.B.
Belgium on Sunday opened a terrorism probe into the attack, the latest in a string of jihadist assaults in Europe.
“We have been informed by federal prosecutors that an investigation has started for attempted terrorist murder… given certain elements (in the case),” Prime Minister Charles Michel told reporters.
A relative of one of the jihadist killers of journalists at French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo has been arrested in Turkey on his way to Syria, a judicial source said Sunday.
Mourad Hamyd, brother-in-law of Cherif Kouachi, who was behind the January 2015 attack in Paris that killed 12, was detained in Turkey last month on suspicion of seeking to enter Syria, the source said.
Hamyd, wrongly identified on social media in the aftermath of the attack as being one of three Charlie Hebdo killers, was denied entry to Turkey and sent to a detention center in Bulgaria on July 28, the source added in confirming a French media report.
The source said French anti-terrorist investigators are preparing a European arrest warrant for Hamyd, whose sister was Cherif Kouachi’s wife.
Kouachi carried out the Charlie Hebdo killings with his brother Said.
Hamyd came under initial suspicion of acting as the brothers’ getaway driver and he was briefly detained before being released without charge.
Official documents relating to the British government’s involvement in Israel’s alleged nuclear arsenal have mysteriously gone missing, the BBC reported on Wednesday.
According to the report, over the last four years, 402 government documents have disappeared from the National Archives, including Foreign Office files from the 1970s and a letter written by former prime minister Winston Churchill in 1947.
One of the missing files listed includes a 1979 report entitled, “Military and nuclear collaboration with Israel: Israeli nuclear armament.” The lost nuclear report, the BBC said, apparently relates to a 1978 United Nations resolution highlighting concern over “increasing evidence” of Israel’s attempts to obtain nuclear weapons.
Since the 1950s, Israel has maintained a policy of nuclear ambiguity, neither confirming nor denying whether it possesses nuclear weapons.
Documents relating to city planning in Jerusalem during the time of the British Mandate also appear to be missing, the BBC said, including 23 photographs of plans and a “panoramic view of Mount of Olives; outer and inner city views,” as well as a 1918 memorandum by Sir William McLean, a civil servant and British architect, who submitted plans to develop Jerusalem while preserving the Old City, the report said.
Police were searching for a Palestinian terror suspect on Sunday afternoon in northern Tel Aviv and Ramat Gan.
Due to the sweeps, rail traffic between the Tel Aviv and Bnei Brak stations was backed-up for a time. Train schedules later returned to routine.
The public is asked to remain on alert, and to report to the police any suspicious person or object.
On Friday, panic ensued when a man wielding a knife ran through Tel Aviv’s Shuk Hacarmel market.
Initial reports showed that the man was known to medical personnel, possibly due to mental health issues.
Fearing a terrorist attack, market goers and workers fled the immediate area in panic.
A police sapper disarmed a pipe bomb that had been left in the parking lot of the Rachel’s Tomb holy site in northern Bethlehem on Sunday.
The explosive device was discovered by officers outside the religious site, prompting them to seal off the area and call in a bomb disposal unit, police said.
After inspecting the device, the sapper “neutralized” it, a police spokesperson said.
No injuries or damage were caused by the pipe bomb, the spokesperson added.
Police have opened an investigation to determine who placed the bomb in the parking lot.
Rachel’s Tomb is believed to be the burial place of the matriarch Rachel. It is holy to Jews, Christians, Muslims and members of other world religions.
A drone that crossed into northern Israel last month belonged to Russia — not Hezbollah, as was initially suspected — the Haaretz newspaper reported Sunday.
The unmanned aerial vehicle entered Israeli airspace from Syria on July 17. The Israel Defense Forces attempted to shoot down the aircraft three times, but failed.
Israel’s security services initially suspected the Lebanon-based terrorist group Hezbollah was responsible for the breach; however, Russian officials admitted to their Israeli counterparts that the drone was, in fact, theirs, the newspaper reported.
While the Russian officials claimed the incident was the result of “human error,” it is possible the Russian military was testing Israel’s aerial defense capabilities.
Though Russian aircraft have crossed from Syria into Israel before, it was the first known case where the IDF retaliated to the breach.
Internet giant Google has been under fierce attacks from around the world this week, after replacing the name of Palestine on its maps application with Israel.
The Palestinian Journalists Front slammed Google for the move, stating that the removal of Palestine’s name from the maps was an attempt by the “Israeli scheme to establish its name as a legitimate state for generations to come” while obliterating Palestine forever.
PJF claimed the move was part of an effort to distort history and geography “as well as the Palestinian people’s right to their homeland,” and “a failed attempt to tamper with the memory of Palestinians and Arabs.”
PJF demanded that Google reverse the changes made in the maps application, since the move was “contrary to all international norms and conventions.”
The fact that there is no such entity as the State of Palestine did not come up in the attack.
A search for “Palestine” in Google Maps does yield a proper reference to the entity, but with a blank map of Israel, with the areas of Gaza, Judea and Samaria marked with a broken borderline but not mentioned by name.
PreOccupiedTerritory: My Distant Ancestors In Arabia Were The First Palestinians By Saeb Erekat (satire)
I have had quite enough of the Zionist trope that “Jews are from Judea; Arabs are from Arabia.” It’s nice and pat, and pretty straightforward, but it pointedly neglects the fact that my distant ancestors in Arabia were the first Palestinians.
It’s not hard to comprehend: my ancestors were whoever might make it possible for me to claim they had an established civilization and culture in Palestine before Jews came and took it all away. That can change from week to week. It’s the Philistines until you point out they were foreign seafaring people from the Aegean; it’s the Canaanites until you note that those seem to have disappeared from the historical record in ancient times; it’s the Muslims until you remember the Muslim conquest happened in the seventh century CE and that many of today’s Palestinian Muslims are descended from migrants who came from everywhere else. The point is that actual evidence is secondary to the emotional resonance of the claim of indigenous status. That being the case, it is perfectly congruent for me to assert that my distant ancestors in Arabia were the first Palestinians. Anything to one-up the Jews.
Preempting Jewish claims, after all, is one of our civilization’s great pastimes. Christians got there first with replacement theology, but we Muslims have taken it much further, projecting all of our shortcomings onto the Jews and blasting them for it – literally, when we can manage. We accuse the victims of the greatest genocide of committing the same crime. We squat on lands all over the place while accusing them of stealing it. We steal water and blame them for creating the resulting problems.
Jpost Editorial: All lives matter
The Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. must be spinning in his grave. A generation after a coalition of blacks and Jews was the vanguard of the Civil Rights Movement in America, blacks have formed a new movement for empowerment that not only excludes Jews, but denies them the right to national liberation. This disgraceful prejudice was shoved in Israel’s face this past week by a delegation of the protest movement Black Lives Matter, which came to single out Israel with false accusations of genocide and to deny Israel’s right to exist.
BLM was founded in 2013 in response to the acquittal of George Zimmerman for shooting unarmed black teen Trayvon Martin. It has grown to some 30 chapters devoted mainly to ending police brutality in the deaths of other unarmed black teenagers. Last week BLM released its first platform, titled “A Vision for Black Lives: Policy Demands for Black Power, Freedom and Justice.” It is a hodgepodge of calls for reparations for slavery and investment in black education and economic equality, among other issues, but focuses on the plight of the Palestinians “living under an imperialistic regime,” in the words of spokeswoman Shanelle Mathews.
“None of us is free until all of us are free,” BLM leader Ash-Lee Henderson told The Jerusalem Post, describing the purpose of the group’s visit to east Jerusalem and the West Bank as aimed at showing solidarity with “our Palestinian comrades here and in the US.”
If this is the state of black liberation in the US today, it is a direct contradiction to the legacy of King, as he stated at the annual convention of the Rabbinical Assembly in 1968: “The response of some of the so-called young militants does not represent the position of the vast majority of Negroes. There are some who are color-consumed and they see a kind of mystique in blackness or in being colored, and anything non-colored is condemned. We do not follow that course … Peace for Israel means security, and we must stand with all our might to protect her right to exist, its territorial integrity and the right to use whatever sea lanes it needs. Israel is one of the great outposts of democracy in the world, and a marvelous example of what can be done, how desert land can be transformed into an oasis of brotherhood and democracy. Peace for Israel means security, and that security must be a reality.”
Canary Mission frequently tweets information about the people it has researched.
The people behind Canary Mission are not known. Anti-Israel fanatic Max Blumenthal published research claiming the people behind Canary Mission are in Israel. Ironically, Blumenthal and his cohorts regularly engage in naming and shaming tactics of pro-Israel advocates, including in the same publication where Blumenthal published his Canary Mission research.
Canary Mission has been controversial from the start, with claims it was creating a blacklist. I’ve yet to see a claim that Canary Mission published false information; rather, the objection is that students may have their careers damaged if prospective employers found out about the outrageous conduct and rhetoric they have engaged in.
That’s an interesting concept, that aggregating public information about things students actually said or did somehow is an unethical blacklist. Others may call it accountability — certainly we see it played out on the left all the time, where some contribution or statement is dug out from the past which is then used to try to get someone fired or pressured to resign. See, e.g., Brendan Eich.
It seems that Canary Mission may be having an impact, because a group of faculty issued a letter condemning Canary Mission and pledging to prevent information aggregated by Canary Mission from being used in graduate admissions evaluations, Graduate Admissions Faculty Condemn Canary Mission Blacklist:
A major Jewish group called the Canadian government to task this week for sponsoring an event “promoting antisemitism and the anti-Israel boycott movement.”
B’nai B’rith Canada was referring to the annual World Social Forum (WSF), slated to take place next week in Montreal. The conference is set to include dozens of anti-Israel workshops, including many promoting the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. According to B’nai B’rith Canada, the gathering aims to “unit[e] various far-left and anti-globalization civil society groups.”
In addition, the group said, the image promoting the event “is a blatantly antisemitic caricature that depicts a Wahhabi terrorist emerging from the mouth of American mascot Uncle Sam, who in turn emerges from the mouth of a stereotypical ultra-Orthodox Jew with a Star of David emblazoned on his hat.”
The nuclear accord signed a year ago with Iran has become a hot US presidential campaign issue. On Thursday, Aug. 4, US President Barack Obama speaking at the Pentagon said the agreement “has worked exactly the way we said it would,” and even “Israeli defense officials are behind [it]… and now recognize the efficacy of the accord” and that the Iranians “no longer have the short term breakout capacity that would allow them to develop nuclear weapons.”
Hillary Clinton declared at the Democratic Party convention which gave her the presidential nomination: “We put a lid on Iran’s nuclear program without firing a single shot.”
Both these claims may be called hyperbolic at best and drew a response from Tel Aviv:
“The Israeli defense establishment believes that agreements have value only if they are based on reality. They have no value if the facts on the ground are opposite to the ones the agreement is based on.”
Documents reaching debkafile’s intelligence sources in recent weeks bare some facts contained in unpublished sections of the nuclear accord – Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPA) – that Iran signed in Vienna with the US, China, France, Russia, retain and Germany on July 14 2015.
This data is at odds with the official version that accord delayed Iran’s short-term breakout capacity to a nuclear bomb by ten years plus one year. It is now demonstrated that if Tehran decides to violate the accord Iran retains the capability to achieve this goal in months – not years.
[Scene: Three Months Later. A Big Karate Tournament.]
Mr. Bibiyagi: Daniel-san, are you ready to spar with Johnny Khameini?
Daniel: Yeah. About that. Listen, Mr. Bibiyagi. I appreciate your advice, even when, quite frankly, it was wrong. And I know that you think you know a lot about karate. But listen. I once lived in Indonesia for a year. So I know some things that you don’t necessarily know. Anyway, I came up with a better idea, so I don’t believe it is necessary to spar with Johnny in the tournament. Here it comes right now.
[A forklift enters the arena and drops a pallet of $100 Bills in front of Johnny]
Daniel: Here’s the money, Johnny. 400 Million. So are we cool?
Johnny (laughing): Sure we are, Daniel. Sure we are…..Until next month that is.
Daniel: That sounds fair.
Mr. Bibiyagi: Oy gevalt. [Places head in hands.Walks away]
[Fade to Black]
The 1945 disappearance of Raoul Wallenberg — a Swedish diplomat who saved thousands of Hungarian Jews from Nazi gas chambers — ranks among the most enduring mysteries of World War II.
Suspicion for the snatching of Wallenberg off the streets near Budapest fell almost immediately on the Soviet Union. To the Soviets occupying Budapest, the ties that Wallenberg had forged with senior Nazis and Americans smelled like espionage, with rescuing Jews an implausible cover story. But his disappearance went unexplained, right through the Gorbachev era of glasnost and the chaos after the collapse of the Soviet Union.
This summer, however, the newly published diaries of the original head of the K.G.B. — found secreted inside the wall of a dacha — have shed fresh light on the case by stating outright for the first time that Wallenberg was executed in a Moscow prison.
“I have no doubts that Wallenberg was liquidated in 1947,” wrote Ivan A. Serov, a Soviet military man who ran the K.G.B. from 1954 to 1958.
Tantalizing hints that Wallenberg, the scion of a rich, prominent family of Swedish industrialists, was imprisoned in Moscow emerged immediately, then dripped out at long intervals. Alexandra M. Kollontai, the domineering Soviet ambassador to Sweden, initially told Wallenberg’s mother that the diplomat was in custody, but backtracked after the Kremlin announced that it knew nothing of the case.
The Baghdad municipality announced Friday it would demolish and then give to a developer the 100-year-old home of Iraq’s first finance minister, Sir Sassoon Eskell, while an official in Iraq’s Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities slammed the decision as a “violation” of the law.
Eskell, who was born into an aristocratic Baghdadi Jewish family in 1860, was instrumental in founding the Iraqi government’s laws and financial infrastructure.
The municipality of the Iraqi capital said in the press release that Eskell’s home “is not a heritage site according to the book of the heritage department,” the Iraqi site Assabah al-Jadeed reported Saturday.
“The home was constructed 100 years ago on Rashid Street, in central Baghdad, and is presently granted to a citizen to invest in,” the statement continued, stressing that “the investment is done in accordance with the law.”
But Sa’id Hamza, head of the investigation department of heritage sites within the ministry, accused the municipality of “violating the law” by giving away Eskell’s home for investment.
Israeli-born basketball star Omri Casspi of the Sacramento Kings took a delegation of NBA players and celebrities to visit Yad Vashem, the World Holocaust Remembrance Center, in Israel on Friday.
Among those who visited the museum with Casspi were former NBA player Shawn Marion and WNBA forward Mistie Bass, who posted on Twitter after the tour, “Why do people honestly believe that never happened? it was a heavy visit.”
The group of celebrities and athletes arrived in Israel on Thursday as part of a trip organized by the Omri Casspi Foundation. Participants included: “Entourage” actor Jeremy Piven, NBA player Amar’e Stoudemire, UFC champion Georges St. Pierre and top-ranked poker player Maria Ho. The group will tour locations across Israel and meet on Sunday with hundreds of children in the mixed Arab-Jewish city of Ramle, The Times of Israel reported.
Casspi organized his first celebrity visit to the Jewish state last year. He brought with him seven NBA players, including teammates DeMarcus Cousins, Rudy Gay and Caron Butler.
An Israeli educational program has been receiving inquiries from Kenya, Nicaragua, Trinidad and other countries about the possibility of adopting it, since former US President Bill Clinton praised the initiative at the Democratic National Convention (DNC), The Jewish Chronicle reported.
Speaking at the DNC on July 27, Clinton said he was serving as president when former First Lady and current presidential candidate Hillary Clinton came across the Home Instruction for Parents and Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY), a program developed in Tel Aviv in 1969 to help parents teach their children basic skills before primary school. She helped bring the initiative to the US and the former president said, “Next thing you know I’m getting dragged around all these preschool graduations … watching these poor parents with tears in their eyes because they never thought they’d be able to help their kids learn.”
He added that 20 years later, “research has shown how well this program works to improve readiness for school and academic achievement.”
Miriam Westheimer, Hippy’s international director, said it is “exciting to get that level of recognition” from a former president and “pretty thrilling,” but not surprising.
“We’ve worked with the Clintons for many years, and when there’s talk about her work in the field of early childhood, it comes up as one of her big accomplishments,” Westheimer said. “Early on, Hillary saw the power of working with parents and making sure they had the information and support they needed when their children were very young…Today, Hippy is one of several evidence-based pro
gramd based in the US which are federally funded, but in those days, it was the first home-instructed program.”
We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.