April 5, 2020

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08/14 Links Pt2: Yad Vashem warns of Nazi ideology on display in Virginia; Anti-Semitic signs at Switzerland hotel


From Ian:

Former Muslim Sandra Solomon fearlessly defends Israel
Sandra Solomon, an Arab born in Ramallah who converted to Christianity more than ten years ago and became a supporter of Israel, explains in an interview to the Kan broadcasting network her motivations and goals in a single-woman crusade for sanity that constantly places her in danger.
Niece of one of the Fatah movement’s founders, Sahar Habash, a close confidant of former Palestinian Authority chairman Yasser Arafat, Solomon frequently repeats her unequivocal disapproval of attacks carried out by Muslims against Israelis, citing education as the cause of the violence.
She condemned the recent Neve Tzuf attack in which a Muslim broke into a home and killed three members of the Salomon family: “The Palestinian terrorist who murdered a family on Friday evening in Halamish – where did he get the idea to enter a home and kill the people who were in there?” asked Solomon. “The young Palestinians who carry out attacks are already murdered from a psychological point of view by the education that is given to them.”
“As a child, I was brought up to hate Israel,” she related. “The most important thing to us was the liberation of the Al-Aqsa mosque, the liberation of Jerusalem and the destruction of the State of Israel.
“We watched the second intifada on television” she said, recalling her childhood spent in Jordan and Saudi Arabia. “After every big terror attack—including when children were killed—candy was given out. The education that was given to me was that only Palestinians are the victims, that they are oppressed in this conflict and that the Zionists are the occupying criminals who took the land for themselves.”

Commemoration gone wrong

This week, Mayor of Rome Virginia Raggi reversed the municipality’s decision to memorialize late Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat by naming one of the city’s public parks after him. The original plan sought to honor the Nobel Prize laureate who, in the municipality’s view, worked to achieve peace between Israelis and Palestinians. For balance, it was decided to name a street in the Italian capital after the late chief rabbi of Rome, Rabbi Elio Toaff.
In a letter to the municipality, the head of the Jewish community in Rome, Ruth Dureghello, condemned the decision for even drawing a comparison between the two figures. Explaining that the plan would debase the late rabbi, she demanded it be called off. Noting Arafat’s direct involvement in the terrorist attacks that killed a young Jewish man in Rome in 1982, Dureghello wrote, “The municipality must decide whether it wants to memorialize the terrorists or their victims.”
The municipality responded with that well-known anti-Semitic refrain: “Some of my best friends are Jewish.” The supposed “balance” in this trick of transfiguration through the use of an exalted rabbi far removed from politics is reminiscent of the actions of the fascist leader Benito Mussolini, who, when he rose to power Italy in 1923, met with Rome’s then-Chief Rabbi Angelo Sacerdoti to ease the minds of Italy’s Jews. But when the Grand Council of Fascism embraced the race laws, it adopted the anti-Semitic policies of Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler and sent the Jews to their deaths. Around 7,900 of Italy’s Jews were murdered in the Holocaust, and lest we forget, it was Italy that bombed Tel Aviv, killing 130 people, in September 1940.
There is something shocking about the municipality’s initial decision to turn the man who made terrorism a Palestinian start-up, who pledged to send “millions of martyrs to Jerusalem” to kill Israel’s Jews and in fact did as much right up until his death despite signing the Oslo Accords, into a figure worthy of being memorialized as a peace activist.

By His Own Admission, Wilkerson Cannot Be Trusted

On July 23, retired U.S. Army Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson appeared on MSNBC and accused Israel of increasing the tension surrounding Al Aqsa Mosque by installing metal detectors nearby. “The ultimate [Israeli] goal with regard to the mosque is to drive the Palestinians and Arabs in general out completely,” he said, adding that the Israeli government’s “ultimate goal is to cause the Palestinians to react in a way that it can then react viciously and violently as it has in Gaza repeatedly.”
With such invective, Wilkerson depicts metal detectors, which are used at holy sites throughout the Middle East, as a provocation against the Palestinians. He also inverts cause and effect, portraying the metal detectors (and Israel’s attacks on Hamas in the Gaza Strip) as the cause, rather than the response to Palestinian violence.
A few days after Wilkerson offered his assessment on MSNBC, Israel removed the metal detectors it had installed, thereby demonstrating that when it comes to assessing Israeli intentions, Wilkerson had no idea what he was talking about. If anyone is trying to increase the tensions surrounding the Temple Mount, it is Palestinian leaders who have used the Al Aqsa Mosque as a pretext and as a staging ground for jihadist attacks against Jews for decades.
Wilkerson’s recent appearance on MSNBC was not the only time he has defamed Israel. In 2016, he declared that a gas attack on civilians universally blamed on Syrian President Bashar Al Assad “could have been an Israeli false flag operation.” When pressed by his interviewer from an internet TV station to describe what the motivation for an Israeli gas attack would be, Wilkerson dodged the question. All he could say is that Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was “too clueless” to know what was in his country’s best interest in the Middle East.
It is Wilkerson who needs a clue. In the same July 21 MSNBC interview, Wilkerson reported a conversation he had with an unnamed Catholic Bishop in Ramallah in 2002 or 2003, who had declared that, “that the biggest enemy for him — for Christians — in that region was not the Arabs, it was the Jews.”

NGO Monitor’s Review of Trócaire’s “This Is Palestine” Documentary

In July 2017, Trócaire and producer John McColgan released (on Vimeo and YouTube) This Is Palestine, a 50-minute documentary that claims to explore “the impact of ongoing conflict and military occupation on the people who live there.”
The documentary promotes a one-sided Palestinian narrative and features interviews with officials from political NGOs such as Combatants for Peace, Youth Against Settlements, Caritas, Breaking the Silence,1 and Rabbis for Human Rights, as well as with Haaretz columnist Gideon Levy. Israeli MFA spokesperson Emmanuel Nahshon also appears sporadically as an artificial form of “balance.”
There are numerous instances in which the film is biased and makes false claims, including the following:
Water Libel:
(17:52) – McColgan stands at a dry valley of the Al-Auja spring, and claims that “…water flowed all year round that is until, 1967…”
According to multiple independent studies of the spring and the Lower Jordan Rift Valley, “Auja spring displays high fluctuations linked to precipitation events.” This included a severe drought from 1992, resulting in “the Auja Spring was dry nearly year-round.”
Additionally, McColgan overlooks the fact that Ein Samia, a major source of the Auja stream, was partially diverted to provide water to Ramallah from 1963 and the Palestinian Jerusalem Water Undertaking wells in the Ein Samia region, which also transfer water to Ramallah. The spring “underwent an intensive rehabilitation effort during 2007 and 2008,” and as recently as February 2017, EU Representative Ralph Tarraf visited Al Auja Spring, which can be seen flowing steadily.
Inaccurate Claims:
(3:35) McColgan describes the brutal kidnapping and murder of Mohammed Abu Khdeir as a possible revenge attack carried out after the murder of two Jewish teens.
Three Israeli teens, not two, were kidnapped and murdered by terrorists who dumped their bodies in an open field.
(9:40) McColgan claims that “Israel has divided the West Bank in to three areas…”
The division of the West Bank into Areas A, B, and C occurred due to the mutually agreed-upon Oslo Accords (1993) between Israel and the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO). The agreement was signed by the United States and Russia, and witnessed by the European Union.

Our ABC is sleeping with our enemies

From The Australian, August 14, 2017, by Jennifer Oriel:
Imagine waking up in Afghanistan this morning. You are in a foreign country fighting a long war against international jihad. You joined the Australian army because you love your country. You love your country so much that you are prepared to sacrifice your life to keep Australians safe from terror. You serve because the war for freedom and democracy, global peace and safety is a war worth fighting. Every house surrendered to the Taliban is a girl who will never know freedom.
But the human face of war is lost in the slow grind of nation-building for a country that isn’t yours. Maybe troops feel they are fighting someone else’s war and it erodes morale. There will be no heroes’ welcome when they return home. Instead, there will be Al Jazeera on the ABC and political correctness from Canberra.
The ABC’s deal with Al Jazeera compromises the credibility of the national broadcaster. The Al Jazeera network is owned by Qatar’s ruling family. Qatar harbours Taliban leaders and reportedly supports other Islamist interests that Australian troops are fighting in the region. David Kirkpatrick wrote in The New York Times:
“Qatar has for many years helped support a spectrum of Islamist groups around the region by providing safe haven, diplomatic mediation, financial aid and, in certain instances, weapons.” The Egyptian media reports that: “Qatar is using groups such as the Taliban, Islamic State … for its own protection.”
Since 2001, Australia has fought its longest war to liberate Afghanistan from the Taliban. By May this year, 42 Australian personnel had died. The US Department of Defence reports that 2216 American lives have been lost in the struggle to free Afghanistan from jihadism. Among them 1833 were killed in action. And the Taliban hasn’t stopped killing our allies. This month, US troops were killed by a Taliban suicide bomber attacking a convoy. Islamic State has emerged in the country also. When Western forces retreat, jihadis strike. The US and Australia have sent additional troops to consolidate democratic nation-building efforts in Afghanistan, taking the number of our personnel to 300.
We might expect Australia’s publicly-funded media to ride with us in the war on international jihad. Yet the ABC’s Al Jazeera coverage of the Western war on terror often seems to align with Qatari foreign policy. It promotes porous Western borders and mass migration from Islamist states to the West while casting our military action to prevent Islamist incursion in a negative light. It frequently plays down the risk that the movement for international jihad poses to the free world. Israel is commonly demonised while some of the Islamic world’s worst violators of human rights are liberated from sustained scrutiny.

Trashing a Transcript to Implicate Israel

Here’s how Hall introduced the segment:
The charity Oxfam has issued an urgent call to the international community to help with an escalating humanitarian crisis in Gaza.
In June the Israeli government cut electricity supply to the Gaza Strip at the request of the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority. Gaza’s two million residents now have just two hours of power a day.
Anthea Spinks is the Associate Director of international programs at Oxfam Australia and she recently returned from Gaza.

Compare the above, which specifically mentions the PA’s role in the electricity cut, with the transcript of that intro as published on the ABC website.
It is worth noting that a transcript is usually a record of what was broadcast verbatim as opposed to a teaser, which is a body of text “intended to arouse interest or curiosity especially in something to follow.” In this case, ABC clearly labels it a transcript, which it provides only for the introduction and not the full interview itself:
While Eleanor Hall specifically mentioned that Israel cut the electricity supply to Gaza at the request of the Palestinian Authority, the transcript has removed that vital piece of context making it appear that Israel is solely responsible for the electricity crisis.
Interview: “In June the Israeli government cut electricity supply to the Gaza Strip at the request of the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority.”
Transcript: “The Israeli government cut electricity supply to the Gaza Strip in June, as part of efforts to cripple the ruling Hamas government.”
Granted, the transcript may not have as wide a reach as the interview itself but questions need to be asked as to why an ABC editor felt it acceptable to make such a glaring change and is this an isolated incident or indicative of a wider problem of creative editing?

JPost Editorial: Condemning Charlottesville

Even as we are focused on our own problems, our eyes and ears can’t avoid turning attention overseas to the United States, where events are taking place that make Israel seem like an island of stability.
The weekend debacle in Charlottesville, Virginia, where white nationalists gathering under a racist umbrella to protest the removal of a statue of Confederate general Robert E. Lee from a public park sparked clashes, violence and death, is another alarming sign that American society is in danger of splitting apart at the seams.
A terrorist driving a car into a crowd is a headline one would expect to see emanating from our region, but when it happens in the US, it’s time to sit up and take notice. And when the driver allegedly subscribes to the hateful beliefs of white supremacists, the Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazi elements that present a threat to Jews, Muslims, blacks and every minority that calls the US their home, it starts to become personal.
The car slammed into a crowd of people on Saturday, killing 32-year-old Heather Heyer. Video on social media and Reuters photographs showed the car hit a large group of counter-protesters who gathered to confront the white supremacists, sending some flying into the air.
There is no denying that near the top of the list of those people the racists hate are Jews. Although the focus of the white supremacists ostensibly was on preserving symbols of the confederacy, there were overt expressions of Nazi sympathy, including swastika flags and signs that said “The Jewish media is going down.”
According to media reports, chanting by the white supremacists at times targeted Jews and named the town’s Jewish mayor, Mike Signer.
There is no middle ground about who is right and wrong in Charlottesville. The sight of racist goons wielding their hate-filled agenda conjures up images of an America many hoped was in the past, where minorities lived in fear and faced discrimination at all turns. It demands unequivocal condemnation – from the top.

Trump condemns ‘repugnant’ KKK, neo-Nazis and white supremacists

US President Donald Trump — under pressure to explicitly condemn a weekend rally by white supremacists in Virginia that ended in bloodshed — on Monday denounced racism as “evil,” singling out the Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazis as “repugnant.”
“Those who spread violence in the name of bigotry strike at the very core of America,” Trump said in nationally televised remarks from the White House, where he travelled early Monday to meet with his top law enforcement aides.
“Racism is evil. And those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists and other hate groups that are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans.”
The clear statement comes after the White House and other senior administration officials had scrambled to elaborate on his previous response, which had only criticized hatred “on many sides.”
Trump came under bipartisan criticism for not clearly condemning white supremacists and other hate groups immediately after the altercations.
White nationalists assembled in Charlottesville on Friday to vent their frustration against the city’s plans to take down a statue of Confederate general Robert E. Lee.
Counter-protesters massed in opposition the next day. A few hours after violent encounters between the two groups, a car was driven into a crowd of people protesting the racist rally, killing a 32-year-old woman and injuring 26 others. The driver was later taken into custody.

US Attorney General: Charlottesville attack ‘domestic terrorism’

US Attorney General Jeff Sessions called the incident of a white supremacist ramming a car into a crowd of protestors in Charlottesville “domestic terrorism,” on ABC News’ “Good Morning America” Monday.
Twenty-year old James Alex Fields, Jr, of Ohio, faces second-degree murder and other charges for allegedly driving the Dodge Charger that killed Heather Heyer on Saturday. He is is due to appear in court Monday.
Fields joined a rally for neo-Nazis and members of the Ku Klux Klan, who clashed with counter-protesters.
Those who know him say his views on race and politics were clear.
“He would often say how, you know, how Hitler’s views were right. what if Hitler had won. What if we had this large, white supremacist empire going into the modern world,” said Derek Wiemer, who was Fields’ high school social studies teacher.
“A lot of us, who, either had him or knew colleagues who had him, we understood his views. We knew, oh this kid, young kid at the time, has very, kind of white supremacist, Nazi views, he really adores Hitler, things like that.”
Fields enlisted in the US Army after high school but failed out of basic training after less than four months, according to military records.
He’s a registered Republican and voted in the 2016 presidential primary.
He traveled to Virginia to take part in a march organized by white nationalist groups, many of whom claim to be supporters of US President Donald Trump, to defend a statue of a Confederate civil-war hero set for removal.
Fields’ alleged attack killed Heather Heyer and injured 19 others.
After the attack, he tried to flee the scene, police said.

Yad Vashem warns of Nazi ideology on display in Virginia

The Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum on Monday condemned this weekend’s neo-Nazi rally in Virginia, saying that the ideology on display there was identical to that which led to the murder of six million Jews.
In a statement, the remembrance center said that it “is very concerned by the images, hateful rhetoric, and subsequent violence emanating from the rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.”
“In our post-Holocaust global society, there is no room for racism or antisemitism,” the organization said. “The anti-Jewish ideology of the Nazis was a precursor to the eventual murderous policy and extermination of six million Jews. These images are yet another reminder that we must remain vigilant about educating the public regarding hatred and xenophobia.”
Jewish Agency chairman Natan Sharansky also slammed the hatred expressed by neo-Nazi participants in the march.
In a statement Sharansky said he was horrified at the racism and hatred demonstrated at the weekend rally by Ku Klux Klan members and other white nationalists in Charlottesville,

Godwin’s law author endorses comparing neo-Nazis to Nazis

The man who coined “Godwin’s law,” an adage from the early days of the internet that derides the prevalent use of Nazi comparisons in online discussions, has sanctioned the analogy for one specific group: neo-Nazis.
“As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches one,” states lawyer Mike Godwin’s rule, first penned in 1990 in reference to threaded online discussions such as internet forums and chat rooms. The “law” was meant to poke fun at commenters who are unable to engage in meaningful discussion and revert instead to labeling opponents as Nazis.
But amid public debate over statements by US President Donald Trump following deadly violence that broke out at a Virginia rally of white supremacists, Godwin, now the general counsel of conservative think tank R Street Institute, said that the rule can be broken when referring to the collection of Klansman, neo-Nazis, alt-right and white nationalists that marched in Charlottesville over the weekend.
“By all means, compare these shitheads to the Nazis. Again and again. I’m with you,” Godwin wrote on Facebook.
In a comment on his own post, Gowin explained that he was writing in response to a question he had been sent about the use of the law in regard to the Viginia protesters.

In Chicago’s Slutwalk, Israel and Palestine Take Center Stage

Traditionally, the villains of the Chicago Slutwalk have been the city’s police officers, who organizers accuse of being part of the “institutional rape culture” and the misogyny driving it. This year, however, the march had a different focus: Israel and Palestine.
Which, coming just a few months after the expulsion of three Jewish women from the Chicago Dyke March—an event which sparked an international backlash and united left and right in condemnations of anti-Semitism—shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. About 300 people showed up Saturday at the downtown Chicago park that served as the rally point for the walk, among them a contingent of about a dozen individuals who were part of a movement called Zioness, whose signs depicted a woman dressed in a red t-shirt and proudly displaying the Magen David.
According to Zioness organizer Amanda Berman, who had flown in from New York specifically to attend Chicago Slutwalk, representatives of the movement were there in solidarity, not protest.
“This conversation has been going on for quite a long time I think between the whole Jewish progressive community,” Berman told Tablet. “It took a turn after the [Dyke] March and the messaging that Zionists can’t be feminists, progressives or activists in social justice causes. Zionists and Jews have always been on the forefront of social justice issues, and to be alienated and marginalized because of who we are is unacceptable, hurtful, and bad for the people that we all want to fight for.”
Fighting was on everyone’s mind: Before rally speakers stepped up, a Slutwalk organizer stepped up and told participants not to engage in “antagonism from anyone in this march or in this rally.”
And yet, tempers flared.

Zionist group shunned at SlutWalk Chicago

About a dozen activists from the Zioness Movement attempted to participate in SlutWalk Chicago on Saturday amidst protests from organizers.
The group, which calls itself progressive and Zionist, had announced prior to the demonstration that they would join in the annual SlutWalk against sexual violence to promote the idea that Zionism and liberal values are compatible.
SlutWalk Chicago organizers said prior to the march that they did not support the participation of the new Zioness initiative.
“SlutWalk Chicago does not support the ‘Zioness progressives’ planning on coming to the walk Saturday. We at SlutWalk Chicago stand with Jewish people, just as we stand for Palestinian human rights. Those two ideologies can exist in the same realm, and taking a stance against anti-Semitism is not an affirmation of support for the state of Israel and its occupation of Palestine,” the group wrote on its Facebook page.
“We oppose all oppressive governments whether they be the United States or Israel, as we recognize these regimes often disproportionately oppress women and femmes. We find it disgusting that any group would appropriate a day dedicated to survivors fighting rape culture in order to promote their own nationalist agenda,” the post also said.

Crowd chants ‘free Palestine’ at SlutWalk Chicago

Organizers of the SlutWalk initially said they would ban Stars of David from the event, but later altered their policy to allow religious symbols but not national flags.
The SlutWalk policy came in the wake of a controversy over the Chicago Dyke March in June, when three Jewish participants at the LGBTQ demonstration were ejected for carrying LGBTQ Pride flags adorned with the Star of David. Dyke March organizers said the women were advocating for Israel at an anti-Zionist event.
On Friday, SlutWalk Chicago released a statement titled “Palestinian Rights are a Feminist Cause.”
“As a feminist, transnational movement calling for an end to rape culture, we march in solidarity with all Palestinians suffering the impact of the State of Israel’s brutal policies. The reasons for this are simple. In the words of Linda Sarsour, one of the architects of the 2017 Women’s March who also organized A Day Without a Woman, ‘You either stand up for the rights of all women, including Palestinians, or none.’ In a nutshell, women’s rights are human rights,” the statement said.
“If the rights of Palestinians are degraded by the State of Israel’s policies across the whole territory they control – including the West Bank as well as Gaza, where Israel controls all entry and exit in this tenth year of military blockade – the treatment of Palestinian women is particularly dehumanizing.”

Exclusive: MPs demand British universities stop accepting donations from dictatorships

Universities should not accept donations from dictatorships, MPs have said, following a Telegraph investigation into donations made to British institutions by authoritarian regimes.
Experts have warned that universities should be subject to funding rules similar to political parties to prevent foreign powers from “buying” influence at the heart of British higher education.
This newspaper has identified dozens of cases where the UK’s leading universities have accepted sponsorship from regimes accused of links to terrorism or human rights violations.
Hundreds of millions of pounds are funnelled into British universities from countries such as Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait, with funds often earmarked for setting up Middle Eastern or Islamic study centres.
Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, nephew of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, donated £8 million to Cambridge University to build The Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Centre of Islamic Studies.
Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad al-Qasimi, the ruler of Sharjah – one of the most conservative emirates in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) – has given more than £8 million to Exeter University over two decades.

Guardian derides Israeli bomb shelters as evidence of the nation’s paranoia.

A photo story about Israeli bomb shelters in today’s Guardian derided this basic security precaution as evidence of the nation’s “siege mentality” – a term denoting unwarranted fears or paranoia.
The caption accompanying the first example continues with this theme:

Of course, bomb shelters were built not because Israelis merely “felt” under threat. They were constructed because its enemies have, since the state’s founding, launched thousands of rockets into Israeli territory – representing an entirely rational security measure than any nation facing a comparable threat would implement.
Further, terrorist groups positioned on Israel’s borders (such as Hezbollah) continue to threaten the state with huge arsenals of increasingly sophisticated long-range rockets, and Iran issues bellicose threats to annihilate the ‘Zionist entity’ while developing the means to do so.
The Guardian has again demonstrated its unique capacity to impute pathos to nearly every aspect of Israeli life.

BBC Radio Ulster promotes ‘Zionism is racism’ and the ‘apartheid’ smear

On July 16th, at an event in Paris marking the 75th anniversary of the deportation of French Jews to Auschwitz, the French president Emmanuel Macron said:
“We will never surrender to the messages of hate; we will not surrender to anti-Zionism because it is a reinvention of anti-Semitism.”
Macron’s statement is of course in accord with the US State department’s definition of antisemitism and in step with the IHRA working definition of antisemitism that was adopted in recent months by the British government and the EU parliament. The IHRA definition includes the following in its possible manifestations of antisemitism:
“Denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, e.g., by claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist endeavor.”
“Applying double standards by requiring of it a behavior not expected or demanded of any other democratic nation.”
As was noted here at the time, BBC News website coverage of the ceremony made no mention whatsoever of the French president’s recognition of anti-Zionism as a manifestation of antisemitism.
However, two days later – on July 18th – BBC Radio Ulster’s daily phone-in show ‘Talkback‘ ran a 35 minute long programme with a title that signaled its tone:
“We debate the very controversial claim by the French president that anti-Zionism is simply another form of anti-Semitism”
Presented by William Crawley, the programme’s studio guests were Unitarian minister Chris Hudson and Fiona Ferguson from the ‘People Before Profit Alliance’: a very small Irish Trotskyist political party which includes the following in its manifesto:
“We support the Palestinian struggle for liberation against Zionist occupation and oppression and back the international campaign for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Apartheid Israel.”
That relevant information was not communicated to listeners.

More narrative-driven ‘history’ from the BBC World Service

The August 8th edition of the BBC World Service radio history programme ‘Witness‘ is titled “The Murder of Naji al-Ali” and it is described as follows in its synopsis:
“The acclaimed Palestinian cartoonist was gunned down in London in 1987. His attackers have never been identified. Naji al-Ali’s cartoons were famous across the Middle East. Through his images he criticized Israeli and US policy in the region, but unlike many, he also lambasted Arab despotic regimes and the leadership of the PLO. His signature character was called Handala – a poor Palestinian refugee child with spiky hair, who would always appear, facing away with his hands clasped behind his back, watching the events depicted in the cartoon. Alex Last has been speaking to his son, Khalid, about his father’s life and death.”
Despite that synopsis, listeners actually hear very little about the substance of Ali’s criticism of Arab regimes and the Palestinian leadership and even less about how that may have been connected to his murder. They do however hear promotion of the familiar context-free narrative of displaced Palestinians with no responsibility for or connection to the events that resulted in their displacement.
Erasing the essential words ‘British Mandate’ from his use of the term Palestine, presenter Alex Last introduces his guest:
Last: “Some fifty years earlier Naji al Ali was born in a village in Galilee in 1936 in what was then Palestine. Khalid al Ali is Naji’s eldest son.”
Ali: “The village had Muslims, Christians and Jews and they’re all playing together and sharing things together, I mean, in the village square, so he had a happy life, a normal life.”

Anti-Semitic signs at Switzerland hotel

A haredi family from Israel received a shock when they found an anti-Semitic sign at the Swiss hotel at which they were vacationing.
The family had found the Aparthaus Paradies hotel in the town of Arosa Switzerland online. Previous guests had given the hotel positive ratings.
However, when the family arrived at the hotel, they were greeted by a sign instructing all Jewish guests to shower before and after using the swimming pool.
The sign read in broken English: “To our Jewish guests, men women and children, please take a shower before you go swimming and also after swimming.”
The sign contained a threat to ban Jewish swimmers if they failed to comply. “If you break the rules, I’m forced to close the pool for you.”
“Thank you for understanding, Ruth Thomann,” the sign concludes.
“After we reserved rooms at the hotel, we talked to the woman in charge, who was very nice to us,” the father explained to News 2 Online. “We told her we were Jewish and she told us that a lot of Jews come there. She brought us what we needed for the baby. After we arrived, she was very nice.”
However, shortly after they settled in the hotel, they noticed a sign on the refrigerator saying that the Jewish guests were limited in using it.
“For our Jewish guests: You are allowed to access the refrigerator only in the following hours: 10:00-11:00 and 16:30-17:30,” the sign read. “I hope you understand that our team does not like being harassed every time.”
“We were in shock,” the father explained. “No one approached her because we did not want to start a confrontation, but the next day the other sign suddenly appeared at the pool, and that was very frightening.”
He said that they attempted to speak with the hotel director about the offensive signs, but she was nowhere to be found.

IsraellyCool: When The American Nazi Party Staged a Protest Outside ‘Exodus’

The recent Nazi rally in Charlottesville is somewhat reminiscent of what happened in Boston, Massachusetts over 56 years ago, when the American Nazi Party picketed outside the film Exodus.
A peaceful demonstration protesting the American Nazi Party’s proposed picketing of the film Exodus erupted into violence yesterday afternoon when four Nazis, including Party leader George Lincoln Rockwell, appeared in front of the Saxon theater.
The crowd of 500 anti-pickets, composed mainly of refugees from Nazi concentration camps, college students, and labor unionists, sent up a loud yell and descended on the khaki-uniformed men wearing swastika arm bands as they emerged from a car near the theatre.
Most of the 125 uniformed policemen and 30 plainclothesmen on the scene rushed to save the Nazis from the screaming, egg-throwing crowd. After a short struggle, three of the four men were ushered into a side door of the Saxon and taken to safety out another exit. The fourth Nazi, a tall, blond man, had been hustled into a police wagon at the start of the molee.
Nazis Taken for Own Safety
Deputy Superintendent John J. Slattery of the Boston Police Department said that Rockwell and his men were not arrested, but just taken into custody for their own safety and then released.

Muslim Refugees Visit Concentration Camp, Cheer Hitler

When Merkel decided to import huge numbers of Muslim migrants, she also brought in a huge population of Nazi sympathizers. The media is largely unable and unwilling to discuss that. This Washington Post story is the closest it comes to it. It mentions the problem of Muslim anti-Semitism while trying to minimize it. And it follows this absurd farce of attempting to educate Muslims about the Holocaust.
It never mentions that Muslims are already perfectly educated about the Holocaust as they participated in it. Instead there’s the conventional approach of pretending that they’re new to the subject.
Two years ago, Jamo, 38, fled to Germany from Kobane, a Syrian city occupied by Islamic State militants in late 2014.
His ambivalent response to the suffering of Jews at Sachsenhausen speaks to centuries-old religious strife as well as to the political conflict that has torn the Middle East since Israel’s founding after World War II.

This is the sort of thing the Post considers “ambivalent.”
The history that binds Germany to Israel is interpreted differently by many in the Arab world, Jamo said: “The Arabs think what Hitler did was a good thing, because he freed them from the Jews.”
One might call them… Nazis. Or Islamofascists.

German camp fails to dispel Arab Jew-hatred

This article in the Washington Post – thoroughly disappointing but not unexpected in view of the anti-Jewish brainwashing prevalent in the Arab world – shows that antisemitism even among Arab refugees – is alive and well. Even a visit to a German concentration camp cannot dispel the idea that the Jews deserved to die, or that the Holocaust was not something uniquely evil.
“Maybe the Jews want to keep these places going so they can be seen as victims forever,” he said of Sachsenhausen, which was mainly used for political prisoners but by the beginning of 1945 held 11,100 Jews.
Jamo’s response is not the usual reaction toEurope’s postwar conversion of concentration camps into memorials and museums, places of atonement and civic education that ask visitors never to forget the Nazi past.
But this was not a typical tour — nor was Jamo a typical visitor. This was an effort to sensitize Muslim migrants to the dark history of the country that today offers them asylum. Two years ago, Jamo, 38, fled to Germany from Kobane, a Syrian city occupied by Islamic State militants in late 2014. His ambivalent response to the suffering of Jews at Sachsenhausen speaks to centuries-old religious strife as well as to the political conflict that has torn the Middle East since Israel’s founding after World War II.
At the same time, the refugee’s views reflect the moral quandaries posed by mass migration for a nation rebuilt after the Holocaust on a set of bedrock principles that includes responsibility to the Jewish people.

Drunk American Tourist Beaten Up In Germany After Giving Nazi Salute

On Saturday morning, a 41-year-old American tourist was beaten up by a passerby after giving a Nazi salute outside of a café in Dresden, Germany. According to police, the victim of the attack was “severely drunk.”
Day drinking in the liberal Neustadt district of Dresden, the American tourist suffered minor injuries as a result of the attack. The man’s attacker fled the scene before police arrived.
Known as a social hub for students, the Neustadt district is particularly averse to inflammatory, offensive, or even mildly controversial speech. It’s unclear if the tourist actually believes in fascist causes or if his drunken stupor compelled him to mindlessly Heil Hitler.
Regardless, police are investigating the victim of the physical attack for giving the Nazi salute, a form of speech that is illegal in post-Third Reich Germany.
“Germany outlawed the salute after World War II, along with Holocaust denial and other symbols and signals associated with the Nazis,” reports The Washington Post. “A conviction can carry a prison sentence of up to three years, although courts often impose fines instead.”

Dutch historians find hidden marriage document of Holocaust victims

Historians in the Netherlands are searching for relatives of a couple murdered in the Holocaust, after their marriage certificate was found concealed inside a chimney.
Paul Harmens, a curator for the Overijssel Historical Center, told the Algemeen Dagblad daily last week that his institution has been searching for relatives of Siegfried de Groot and Bertha Lippers for weeks following the discovery earlier this year.
The marriage certificate, issued in 1931 in Germany, was found at a private home during renovations the town of Hattem 60 miles east of Amsterdam. It was concealed behind a divide inside the home’s chimney.
The couple and their two children, Dietrich and Marta Clara, all perished in the Holocaust: Siegfreid in the Mauthausen death camp in Austria and the rest in Auschwitz. He was 29 when he married 22-year-old Bertha in 1931, in what the official paper said was a religious ceremony where a rabbi officiated.
Harmens said he did not know how the certificate ended up where it was discovered. De Groot, the groom, was born in Zwolle, a Dutch city bordering the suburb of Hattem.

Jews Comprised Less Than a Quarter of Tourists Visiting Israel in 2016

New data obtained by Israel Hayom analyzes the rising number of tourists arriving in the Jewish state, including visitors’ age, religion and the nature of their trips.
A record-high 2.9 million tourists visited Israel in 2016. According to a survey by Mertens Hoffman Management Consultants, 47 percent had already visited Israel at least once before, and 80 percent said they would be willing to visit again.
Fifty-four percent of the tourists who visited Israel last year were Christians. Of the Christian visitors, 38 percent were Catholic, 28 percent were Protestant and 28 percent were Eastern Orthodox. Jews comprised only 24 percent of tourists visiting Israel in 2016. An additional 15 percent of tourists said they had no religious affiliation. Three-percent of the tourists were Muslims, followed by Hindus, Buddhists, Baha’is and members of other religions.
Nearly half of the tourists who arrived in Israel in 2016 were more than 45-years-old. Only 18 percent were younger than 25. More than half (57 percent) came to Israel on their own, and 12 percent came as part of family groups of three or more members. The average stay per tourist was 11.4 nights. At least 64 percent organized their own trips, compared to the 27 percent who visited Israel as part of a tour group.

Draft of Israel’s Declaration of Independence to be auctioned

It is not every day that pieces of the history of modern-day Israel are put up for sale. But this month, a preliminary draft of Israel’s Declaration of Independence and a pair of binoculars that belonged to slain Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin will go under the hammer at two separate auctions.
The Jerusalem District Court ruled on Sunday that a draft of the Declaration of Independence could be sold at auction, over the government’s objection.
Judge Tamar Bazak-Rappaport ruled that private individuals could own archival items of national importance, saying, “Historic records leave traces not only in documents owned by the state, but also documents owned privately.”
The Kedem Auction House in Jerusalem has set the opening bid for the draft at $250,000.
Meanwhile, fans of the history of modern-day Israel will have a chance to bid on Rabin’s binoculars at a sale to be held this month at the Jerusalem of Gold Auction House in Jerusalem for an opening bid of $5,000.
Rabin’s binoculars, manufactured by the German firm Carl Zeiss, are being sold in their original brown leather case. The inside of the case is stamped with the words “Y. RABIN Brig Gen,” an indication that the seventh chief of staff of the IDF had the binoculars at least from his time as a brigadier general. The name Y. Rabin also appears on the binoculars’ strap.

Israel to send aid to Sierra Leone after devastating landslide

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday instructed the Foreign Ministry to send aid to Sierra Leone, where hundreds of people were killed in a massive landslide in the capital.
At least 312 people were killed and more than 2,000 left homeless when heavy flooding hit Freetown, leaving excavators to pull bodies from rubble and overwhelming the city’s morgues.
“The prime minister has ordered the Foreign Ministry to extend aid to Sierra Leone in any way and as soon as possible,” his office said.
As there is no embassy in Sierra Leone, Netanyahu said Israel will send medicines, clean water, blankets and other needed items via the embassy in Senegal.
Sierra Leone’s President Ernest Bai Koroma visited Israel in January, and at that time Netanyahu discussed with him the possibility of sending a delegation to help the country’s development.
Sierra Leone is one of the poorest countries in the world, according to UN indicators.

Gaza boy able to walk after Jerusalem doctors remove tumor

A four-year-old boy from Gaza is able to walk after undergoing complex surgery at Hadassah-University Medical Center, in Jerusalem’s Ein Kerem, to remove a tumor from his chest.
Born with a number of birth defects in his spine and chest, Sliman was taken during his short life to several hospitals in Gaza where unsuccessful attempts were made to diagnose his condition. He had been operated on in the past to reduce congestion on the cervical spine due to the lack of development of the vertebrae, but his clinical condition did not improve due to the lack of proper treatment for the other problems he suffered.
After years of sitting in a wheelchair, unable to stand or stand on his feet and in severe respiratory distress, Sliman was taken a few weeks ago by a Red Crescent ambulance to Hadassah for surgery.
Prof. Uzi Yizhar, head of the chest surgery unit, said that a significant congenital tumor had developed, causing pressure on the spinal cord and lung that led to recurrent pulmonary infections and chronic lung damage. “When he arrived at the hospital, there was evidence of acute pneumonia in the entire right lung.”
After his admission to the hospital, the boy was hospitalized in a pediatric ward, where he was treated by specialists in pulmonary medicine. He underwent a number of diagnostic tests prior to the decision on chest surgery. “Over the past two years, Suleiman had stopped moving his legs,” said Yizhar. “He had no feeling in his lower limbs and could not stand on them; his parents had to transport him in a wheelchair.”
After his respiratory condition improved, “we decided to operate it in order to perform an excision of the unusual and large tumor from the chest.” In the successful operation, the entire tumor was removed.
The child’s rapid recovery surprised even his doctors. “After the tumor was removed, Sliman was moved from pediatric intensive care to the pediatric surgery department, where his respiratory condition improved greatly,” recalled Yizhar. “The next stage was inevitable, so I said to him: ‘Come on, kid, we start walking,’”

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