October 19, 2017

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09/15 Links Pt2: Phillips: Britain’s alarming antisemitism problem; BDS vs. the iPhone X

http://elderofziyon.blogspot.com/2017/09/0915-links-pt2-phillips-britains.html

From Ian:


Melanie Phillips: Britain’s alarming antisemitism problem
In 2002, on the BBC TV show Question Time, I was accused of dual loyalty in front of a jeering studio audience. My crime had been to defend Israel against demonization and double standards by both the audience and other members of the panel.

At that time I had visited Israel only twice in my life, two years previously. No matter. A British Jew defending Israel was – and is – immediately accused in some quarters of incipient treachery toward Britain, just as throughout history antisemites have accused Diaspora Jews of dual loyalty or treachery merely because they are Jews.

I thought of my own experience, of course, when I read the report on antisemitism in the UK published this week by the Institute for Jewish Policy Research.

There is currently much disquiet over the Labour Party’s conspicuous failure to address significant antisemitism within its ranks. But there has long been far wider concern among many British Jews about the antisemitic discourse, harassment and physical attacks which have become sickeningly commonplace in Britain over the past few years.

The report’s author, Daniel Staetsky, describes a situation which is complex.

Only around 5% of the population are out-and-out antisemites holding multiple anti-Jewish attitudes. Nevertheless, about 30% subscribe to some kind of antisemitic views.

The key is Staetsky’s distinction between antisemites and antisemitism. For while the number of antisemites is very small, the amount of antisemitism diffused throughout British society is much greater.

David Collier: Why you shouldn’t just shrug your shoulders at SOAS

So why is it important

It is important because it shouldn’t be happening anywhere. Just recently, Jonathan Arkush met with Baroness Amos. He described the meeting as ‘the worst of his life’. At the very top of SOAS, those in control have lost their way. Rather than bring the university in line, they have become protectors of the disintegrating environment. The Board of Deputies of British Jews is now considered a hostile element by a UK university and treated as such. A quick search will provide dozens of examples, of anti-Israel and Jewish rhetoric delivered at SOAS. Just one website, Richard Millett’s lists more than a dozen of his own personal experiences.

Yet SOAS is just an example of what can and will happen, wherever the perfect storm is created. Anti-Zionist activists, funding and the social and ethnic make-up of the students. Nobody has any interest in addressing the problem. At SOAS, Jews are not just a minority, they are a hunted minority. If you are Jewish with a soft spot for Israel you hide in the undergrowth or become prey. At a place like SOAS, which is so dependent on pacifying the mob, the Jews are left unprotected.

SOAS isn’t some regional town. It is a university. SOAS is like a local police station where the officers are all corrupt, were those arrested can have unfortunate accidents and local minorities live in fear of the authorities. SOAS is like a local council, where the Councillors prohibit Jews from certain professions unless they are willing to convert to the local church belief. This is an indication of a societal problem at an organised level. Not just a bad street, not just a bad town, but a bad Executive. A growing problem, developing at the very heart of our society. One that clearly threatens Jews.

Like a cancer it has to be rooted out. We need to identify what the problem is. Why Baroness Amos stands atop a rotten edifice, that betrays all of the core values it is meant to hold dear. We need to ask why is the lie unchallenged? Is it the demographics? Is there finance entering campus that is proving detrimental to Western society? What exactly is it that is developing in the academic undergrowth? Everyone who views SOAS with distaste should want to understand just which variables need to be in place to create an environment like this.

If you don’t want all universities to eventually look like SOAS looks today, you have to understand why this is happening. Why in London there is a university that threatens people who tell the truth. First there was one, now there are several of these pockets, spread across the country. A disease that is spreading. Which is why you cannot, must not, just shrug your shoulders.

Richard Millett: Jackie Walker brings her “lynching” to SOAS.

Then Walker was joined for a Q&A by three other anti-Israel activists: film director Ken Loach, author and journalist Victoria Brittain, and academic Prof. Jonathan Rosenhead.

The Q&A session basically turned into a full attack on the Jewish Chronicle and those writing for it who Walker called “proto-fascists”, The Jewish Labour Movement (Walker thinks the JLM should not give training sessions on anti-Semitism), the Israel Advocacy Movement who Walker accused of digging into her Facebook, the Labour Party compliance unit who Walker thinks is leaking everything to the Jewish Chronicle, the Campaign Against Antisemitism and the Community Security Trust who Walker said “churn out biased surveys all the time”, the so-called “weaponisation of antisemitism” (see above), the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s Working Definition of AntiSemitism which is being increasingly adopted by governments and councils, and, of course Israel.

These hard-left activists want the IHRA defintion changed because they only recognise the neo-Nazi type anti-Semitism as seen at Charlottsville. That means they, in their opinion, can never be considered anti-Semitic.

They don’t like the IHRA classifying “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” as anti-Semitism. That’s because they want the end of the only Jewish majority state.

Caroline Glick: Yair Netanyahu and the angry Left

Yair Netanyahu, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s 26-year-old son, has been getting some harsh press in recent weeks.

Yair walked (or toddled) onto the stage of public life when he was five years old as he and his then two-year-old little brother Avner accompanied their parents, Bibi and Sara, into the Prime Minister’s Residence for the first time in 1996.

For nearly 20 years, the Netanyahu boys were little more than a silent presence standing to the side of their parents on election nights. But while Avner remains on the sidelines while serving as a combat soldier, Yair is no longer a stage extra in his parents’ story.

In recent years the older Netanyahu boy has taken to Facebook. And it works out that he is quite an iconoclast.

Yair’s iconoclasm is unsurprising. The Israeli establishment has been bludgeoning his parents since Yair was learning to finger-paint. It would be bizarre if he sought its approval.

Not only does he not seek acceptance from the leftist elite, he clearly hold its members in contempt.

And he’s happy to tell everyone what he thinks about them. Indeed, over the past month, as the criminal probes against his parents have dominated the news cycle, the frequency of Netanyahu’s controversial postings has steeply intensified.

In the last month alone, Yair’s posts have caused media furors three times.

UN Watch: The End of Human Rights at the U.N. — Panel was “Mother of All Rogues’ Galleries”

Even within the rogues’ gallery that is the U.N. human rights Council, today’s council panel attacking Western democracies for imposing sanctions on dictatorships was the mother of all rogues’ galleries.

The panelists:
1. Lead panelist was UN expert Idriss Jazairy, who described Putin’s Russia as a human rights victim. Coincidentally, as UN Watch revealed today, Jazairy received $50,000 from the Russian government. As Algerian ambassador to UN, he once said “antisemitism targets Arabs”; and, most famously, he led a major effort to muzzle UN human rights experts. And then he became a UN human rights expert himself.

2. Alena Douhan, a Belarus academic with a soft spot for Russia, whose doctorate was on the principle of “non-interference” in countries’ “internal affairs.”

3. Alfred de Zayas, the Cuban-appointed expert for a “democratic and equitable international order.” Zayas has defended Iran’s right to nuclear weapons, and writes books claiming Germany suffered a “genocide” in 1945. Zayas is a hero to Holocaust deniers.

4. Jean Ziegler, co-founder & 2002 recipient of the Qaddafi Human Rights Prize. In his presentation, Ziegler actually defended the murderous Maduro regime of Venezuela, which he said was being victimized by a U.S. “economic war.”

5. Panel Chair: the ambassador of Venezuela’s Maduro regime, Jorge Romero. He effusively thanked Ziegler for his kind words.

6. Peggy Hicks, a top official in the office of UN high commissioner Zeid, delivered the opening statement. A former Human Rights Watch official, we hoped she would provide a dissenting voice. Instead, she echoed the same line. And when Ziegler spouted pro-Maduro propaganda, Hicks was silent.

Fixing the UN

With all this in mind, it should be apparent that the goals and purposes established by the U.N.’s founders are beyond reach. But a less bad U.N. is conceivable. I’d suggest focusing, initially at least, on just three areas.

First: corruption and mismanagement. It would be useful if President Trump were to insist that the U.N.’s Office of Internal Oversight Services be augmented or replaced by an Inspector General. He or she would have access to all the organization’s financial records and the authority to cut off funds to any U.N. entity unwilling to cooperate fully. Since the U.S. is the U.N.’s major funder this position should be filled by an American selected by the U.S. president and/or Congress.

Second, Trump should make clear that the United States will not surrender sovereignty to the U.N. or other globalist bureaucracies. Only a small minority of Americans – and virtually no one who voted for the current president – regards the organization as an incipient world government, a “parliament of nations” or the supreme arbiter of international law and legitimacy. Agreements that are tantamount to treaties – for instance, the Iran deal, the major nuclear arms limitation accord so far in this century – should have congressional approval. A U.N. endorsement should not be seen as an adequate substitute.

Third, it’s high time to end the obsessive campaign to delegitimize Israel, the only nation in the Middle East that guarantees basic rights to all its citizens including its substantial Arab and Muslim minorities. In the 20th century, genocidal anti-Semites wiped Jewish communities off the map of Europe. In the 21st century, genocidal anti-Semites vow to wipe the Jewish state off the map of the Middle East. The U.N. has become their accomplice, a fact both President Trump and Ambassador Haley rightly regard as shameful. At the very least, money from American taxpayers should no longer go to U.N. agencies participating in this campaign.

Trump has described the U.N. as a “club for people to get together, talk and have a good time.” Based on the experience of recent decades, it would constitute an enormous improvement were the U.N. simply to serve that purpose while doing no harm.

There are some U.N. agencies that perform useful functions. We can continue to support them (either within the U.N. system or outside it) if they’re willing to provide transparency and achieve basic metrics. But Third World bureaucracies should not receive First World funding.

Perhaps, in parallel, the time has come to seriously explore a different approach to international community, one that distinguishes between despotisms and free nations, and endeavors to defend the latter from the machinations of the former.

Former UN Ambassador John Bolton dismisses US reform effort as “just the usual rhetoric”

Former American ambassador to the U.N. John Bolton says a U.S. -sponsored draft declaration on U.N. reform being chaired next week by President Trump “is just the usual rhetoric.”

Trump will be in New York next week for his first U.N. General Assembly, where his first act of business will be to chair the U.S.-sponsored event on U.N reform.

Fox News obtained a copy of the U.S.-sponsored draft declaration that supports Secretary General Antonio Guterres’ reform efforts.

“The draft declaration is just the usual rhetoric. It could have been issued five years ago, or 50 years ago,” John Bolton, the former U.S. ambassador to the world body, told Fox News.

“It reads like it was drafted by the U.N. Secretariat,” he said, referring to the U.N.’s executive arm.

“I certainly hope it wasn’t drafted by the [U.S. government.]”

$600,000 to protect Orthodox Jewish speaker at Berkeley campus

Conservative pundit Ben Shapiro spoke at the University of California at Berkeley Thursday night amid threats of violence from the radical Antifa group.

Berkeley spent approximately $600,000 to protect Shapiro and students who wished to hear him speak. Leftist activists slammed Shapiro, an Orthodox Jew, as a “neo-Nazi” and a “white supremacist.”

The campus was placed on virtual lockdown as metal detectors, concrete barriers and police barricades were set up to keep the peace.

Shapiro slammed Antifa for making the expensive measures necessary. “Free speech isn’t free. It costs over $600,000 thanks to Antifa.”

“Conservatives here have done something amazing. They’ve achieved something incredible,” Shapiro said during his speech. “If you look outside, there’s K-bar everywhere. They’ve built basically these structures to keep Antifa from invading the premises.

“So that means Berkeley has achieved building a wall before Donald Trump did,” he added.

Local police were permitted to use pepper spray on individual protesters if the expected violence got out of hand. The extensive security measures scared off the majority of the protesters, and the event was held without the feared violence. Three protesters were arrested for possessing weapons prior to the event.

“No violence, no nothing. And now we are spending well into six figures so that I can say many of the same things. It’s utterly absurd,” Shapiro said in his speech.

Will BDS supporters refrain from buying the iPhone X?

Supporters of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement may face a dilemma over buying the new iPhone X, because some of its manufacturers are located in Israel.

Apple unveiled its iPhone X last week for a market price of $1,000, along with launching the iPhone 8, and the iPhone 8 Plus. Although the American tech giant is based in California and employs hundreds of sub-suppliers, many of the components found inside Apple’s iPhones and products are built and assembled in Israel.

Apple began Israeli operations in late 2011 and its Herzliya office employs some 800 people, making it the company’s second-largest research and development office, Apple CEO Tim Cook said during a previous visit to the country.

The Herzliya office was reported to be developing the hardware for the iPhone 8 last year, according to Business Insider.

Israeli technology has also contributed to the facial recognition technology behind the iPhone X. Nicknamed Face ID, the all-screen phone requires your face to unlock the new iPhone. With no physical home button, Apple has ditched Touch ID functionality.

Earlier this year, Apple acquired the Israeli-founded RealFace, a company that specializes in cybersecurity and which developed facial recognition software for users to log in.

Michael Lumish: Safe Space Nation

Now it is the Left that tends to be that way with their “trigger warnings” and thumb sucking “safe spaces.” Their gender neutral pronouns. Their deplatforming of speakers. Their loathing of alternative viewpoints and their disinclination to debate or discuss beyond narrow strictures of acceptability.

They’re like a bunch of old biddies patrolling the words that we may use or even the hairstyles that we may sport.

The American Left has become some sort-of twenty-first-century version of Tom Sawyers’ Aunt Polly, making sure that you’ve washed behind your ears.

I’ve read where the generation following the “millennials” are more open-minded than their older brothers and sisters. I certainly hope so because the current moment reminds me of nothing so much as the Red Scare of the 1950s.

We are going through a “moral panic” in the United States in which people are searching for Nazis and Klansmen and White Supremacists under their bed or lurking in the closet.

It is obnoxious, politically self-serving and intrusive into the lives of others.

Much of the Left should take a permanent retreat to the Safe Space of their choosing.

That way, at least, they will be less likely to annoy the rest of us.

Canadian Officials Blasted Over Taxpayer-Funded Talk Demonizing Israel at MacEwan University

A prominent Canadian Jewish group on Wednesday denounced a government-sponsored conference held at MacEwan University featuring a speaker who endorsed anti-Israel boycotts and promoted the work of a radical activist accused of antisemitism.

The Ignite Change 2017 conference — organized by the John Humphrey Centre for Peace and Human Rights — took place from August 21-25 with the support of sponsors including the city of Edmonton, the province of Alberta, the Canadian Human Rights Commission and the University of Alberta International, according to the event’s organizers. The John Humphrey Centre receives funding from the Canadian government.

In an August 22nd workshop titled “Intersection of Advocacy,” John Humphrey board member Ranya El-Sharkawi “strongly endorsed” the boycott, divestment, and sanctions movement against Israel, said B’nai Brith Canada, which obtained a recording of the event.

El-Sharkawi also argued that antisemitism was “a term that’s not really liked” in academia, “because when you go to the root of the term, ‘semite’ refers to Arabs and Jews, so the whole concept of antisemitism is problematic, since it just means that you’re against your own ethnicity.”

B’nai Brith noted that efforts to reject the term “antisemitism,” which was coined by German propagandist Wilhelm Marr in an effort to make Jew-hatred sound more scientific, were “often linked to attempts to excuse or promote hatred of Jews.”

Leftist Jewish youth groups in Rio boycott Israeli folk dance festival

Three leftist Jewish youth movements have refused to attend Brazil’s longest running Israeli dance festival in retaliation for a lecture given by a right-wing politician at a mainstream Jewish center five months ago.

Chazit Hanoar, Habonim Dror and Hashomer Hatzair say their unprecedented boycott of the 47th annual Hava Netze Bemachol festival is meant to protest Jair Bolsonaro’s speech at the Rio Hebraica center in April.

Bolsonaro, a prominent pro-Israel congressman, is known as a defender of the far right-wing military dictatorship that ran Brazil from 1964 to 1985. Sao Paulo’s Hebraica had previously disinvited him.

“Hebraica staged one of the most aggressive hate speeches ever expressed to the Jewish community in recent years, with words of appeal to xenophobia, racism, misogyny, homophobia, ethnocentrism, dictatorship and political impunity,” Hashomer Hatzair said in a statement.

“Such an expression of intolerance directly hurt us when they hamper the work carried out weekly by our activists in order to propagate ideals of tolerance to young people who participate in the movement.”

Israel’s Bible Marathon excluded by politics and ‘discrimination’

The Association of International Marathons and Distance Races is injecting politics into sports by excluding an Israeli race because it runs through Judea and Samaria, Israel said on Thursday.

The Israel Marathon Association said the world marathon body was displaying a “discriminatory nature” against the Bible Marathon that “will certainly result in great anger” among runners around the world.

Next month’s Bible Marathon stretches from the central Israeli city of Rosh Haayin to the Samaria settlement of Shiloh, tracing a path described in the Book of Samuel. Organizers call the route the oldest recorded marathon in history.

The Greek-based AIMS said it had to exclude the Israeli marathon to comply with “international public law.”

The Israeli association asked the world marathon body to reconsider, saying that its decision was “prompted by a campaign organized by political activists” and rested on false legal premises. It pointed out that the international organization has long recognized the Laayoune Marathon in the disputed Western Sahara region controlled by Morocco.

“There cannot be one international law for Israel and another for everywhere else. The discriminatory action taken by AIMS is unacceptable and must be rectified immediately,” said Eugene Kontorovich, an international law expert representing the Israeli association.

IsraellyCool: WATCH: Roger Waters, Dishonesty Now!

I know you are sick of seeing and hearing him (so am I), but rock’n’roll BDS-hole Roger Waters has been interviewed yet again, this time on the far-Left Democracy Now. And, as usual, he is so full of lies and omissions, that I need to set the record straight and expose him for what he is.

Watch the interview below (if you can stomach it) and note in particular:

  • Waters starts by again denying his antisemitism. It is getting old.
  • His repeating of the lie of his recent NY Times op-ed, that the proposed Israel Anti-Boycott Act targets First Amendment rights. As I mentioned in my post rebutting this op-ed, this is patently false; it specifically targets commercial activity – not mere expression of opinion – and is based on current law that has been constitutionally upheld.
  • His implication AIPAC is all powerful and always gets what they want
  • Waters claiming Israeli newspapers called Radiohead’s concert “the best moment for Hasbara we have had in decades!” This is another outright lie.
  • His dishonesty about the 1947 Partition Plan and why it did not happen (he deliberately does not mention that the Arabs rejected it!)
  • The antisemitic tropes of the movie Occupation of the American Mind

IsraellyCool: WATCH: The Worst BDS Flash Mob Fails

I should probably apologize for this video but the pull of mocking these nincompoops proved too hard to resist.

I do at least provide a health warning with this video.

PreOccupiedTerritory: Education Ministry Replaces Academic Grades With Racism Scale (satire)

In an effort to keep Israeli educational practices on pace with standards elsewhere in the developed world, the Ministry of Education will direct schools to replace the current outdated system of assigning grades based on student academic achievement with a more relevant approach that assesses only the level of a student’s racism.

Ministry Deputy Director for Academic Standards Lee Berl announced today that beginning with the 2018-2019 academic year, teachers will be instructed to assess each student’s level of racism at several points during the academic term, and only those students whose racism remains lower than a certain threshold will advance to the next grade, or be permitted to graduate.

Berl informed school principals and teacher representatives today of the impending change, which will require her division to complete the formulation of a system to evaluate racism in 5-18-year-olds. Ministry staff voiced confidence they would meet the challenge.

“We’re a diverse group, and that’s what important,” insisted Ayam Woak, a district inspector. “The question is not whether we will meet the specific criteria of rolling out the grading reform by a target date, but how inclusive are we? The sooner we let go of divisive and, let’s face it, Eurocentrist, imperialist concepts such as ‘grades’ and ‘achievement,’ the happier we will be.”

“Academic scores might serve some purpose, but only insofar as no one’s feelings get hurt as a result,” added Tala Rint, a high school curriculum supervisor. “That’s why a subsequent phase of the grading reform calls for the elimination of certain problematic subjects from the classroom entirely. Western civilization, for example, will only be taught through the lens of populations that suffered at the hands of Europeans or Americans, and never on its own terms. Biology will be considered only from a gender-fluid perspective.”

Facebook called out for enabling ads aimed at ‘Jew haters’

Facebook on Friday said it had blocked a feature allowing advertisers to reach out to “Jew haters,” following investigative reports a day earlier that revealed the social media giant enabled campaigns for hate groups.

Facebook said it worked to fix the problem, which is based on an algorithm, after reports in ProPublica and Slate showing that advertisers were able to specifically target anti-Semitic or prejudiced users with their ads.

According to Slate, however, it was still possible to purchase ads targeting anti-Muslim and white nationalist users even after Facebook intervened.

ProPublica reported that “the world’s largest social network enabled advertisers to direct their pitches to the news feeds of almost 2,300 people who expressed interest in the topics of ‘Jew hater,’ ‘How to burn jews,’ or, ‘History of why jews ruin the world.’”

Although the category was too small on its own, when adding other categories, such as the far-right, ultra-nationalist National Democratic Party of Germany, ProPublica was able to purchase ads targeting the 2,274 people who listed “Jew hater” in the “education” or “work” sections of their profiles. The ads were approved within 15 minutes.

The website also found that 3,194 listed their employer as “German Schutzstaffel” — the German SS — and another 2,449 who said they worked for “Nazi Party.”

Facebook removed the categories after ProPublica contacted the social media network and said it would work to fix the problem.

A ‘dark Israel’ genre BBC News website story jumps the gun

In fact, MK Guetta was only due to meet with the Deputy Knesset Speaker on the day after the BBC published its report.

The New York Times added:

“Mr. Guetta is now in negotiations with the Shas Party’s council of sages who are said to be less upset about his attendance at the wedding than his disclosure of that information in the radio interview.

A compromise appears to be emerging in which Mr. Guetta would apologize for giving the interview, though not for attending the wedding, and would retain his place in the party and his seat in the Knesset, Israel’s parliament.

To formally resign he would have to write to the Knesset chairman, a step he has not taken yet.”

Israel is of course far from the only country in which some religious figures take a conservative attitude towards gay marriage but in its apparent rush to publish yet another story promoting the ‘benighted’, ‘backward’ Israel theme, the BBC failed to check the accuracy of its claim that Mr Guetta had already ‘given up his seat’.

Vox: Don’t Say “Radical Islamic Terrorism,” But Definitely Say “Jewish Terrorism”

Vox: Don’t Say “Radical Islamic Terrorism,” But Definitely Say “Jewish Terrorism”

On our main site yesterday, we wrote about Vox’s false claim that West Bank settlements are dotted with world-class hospitals that Palestinians can’t go into.

While looking into that, we noticed something else. Across multiple articles, Vox reporter Zack Beauchamp has championed the argument that use of the phrase “radical Islamic terrorism” is problematic in that, even with the qualifier “radical,” it broadbrushes all Muslims.

Okay. But if that’s what Beauchamp and Vox believe, why do they use the phrase “Jewish terrorism” with such relish?

In one article, variants of the phrase appear 18 times: in the title, in headings, approvingly in quotes, and in the reporter’s own words.

Does Beauchamp think attacks by extremist Jews speak for “the entirety of the Jewish religion”? Does he not care about “alienating Jewish allies”? Or “misidentifying the cause of the problem as one of Jewish theology”? Is it fine, in his view, to “insult mainstream Jews to boot”? That seems to be the conclusion from his language.

“Palestine” Enters Popular Culture on Jeopardy!

Jeopardy! — the popular television quiz show that began in the 1960’s — is premised upon contestants formulating a question to a clue presented by the host in the form of a statement/answer. The clues are chosen from a variety of categories (within history, geography, literature, science) that tests contestants’ general knowledge.

The term “Palestine” to ostensibly describe a modern-day entity has recently been the subject of Jeopardy! clues. For example, the September 13th show included the following clue and answer:

Clue: A land divided by Jordan, Egypt & Israel, or the seat of Anderson County, Texas.
Answer: “What is Palestine?”

The implication seems to be that “Palestine” is also the current name of a modern country in the Middle East (referring to disputed territories).

In the November 18, 2016 show, there was a similar clue:

Clue: It’s a small New Hampshire town as well as an ancient name for Palestine.
Answer: What is Canaan?

The implication again seems to be that Palestine is the modern-day name of the country. But references to a current “Palestine” in the West Bank and Gaza are incorrect. Those areas should accurately be referred to as “Palestinian” or “disputed” territories, depending on which areas are being discussed, or as the West Bank and Gaza. If Jeopardy! clues are trying to suggest that Palestine is a modern-day state, the program should take a cue from the numerous media outlets that have corrected this error.

NY Jewish women mistaken for Muslims assaulted in suspected hate crime

A Jewish woman and her mother were beaten up at a Queens subway station by a man who mistook them for Muslims, police said.

The women, 37 and 57, had just gotten off the M train and were walking toward the exit of the 67th Av. station in Forest Hills when they heard the man lob an insult at them around 2 p.m. Wednesday, according to a report on the incident by the New York Post Thursday.

When the younger woman told the man to repeat what he had just said, he spat in her face and “Get out of my country you dirty Muslim,” according to a police report on the incident based on the testimonies of the alleged victims.

He then began punching both women in the face and body. The report did not say what made the man target the women.

The man, identified as Dimitrios Zias, 40 was arrested at the scene and charged with multiple counts of assault as a hate crime, officials said.

Jewish groups disappointed charges were not laid against two imams

Jewish groups are disappointed that the Crown will not bring charges against two imams who made anti-Semitic statements, including a call for the death of Jews, in a Montreal mosque, due to the amount of time that’s passed.

Wael al-Ghitawi and Sayed al-Ghitawi gave the contentious sermons at the Al-Andalous Islamic Centre in the St-Laurent borough of Montreal in 2014.

Both the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) and B’nai Brith Canada filed complaints against the men with Montreal police, charging that they had incited hatred and violence against Jews.

The sermons came to the public’s attention in February of this year, when YouTube videos of the talks were brought to light by some Toronto-based investigative journalists who translated them.

B’nai Brith tweeted on Sept. 13 that it is “outraged that Quebec prosecutors have chosen not” to proceed, arguing that the excuse that too much time has elapsed “is blatantly false” and stating that B’nai Brith “won’t accept this.”

“While we appreciate the thorough investigation by the Montreal police and the thoughtful decision taken by the Quebec Crown attorney, we are extremely disappointed that the Crown did not feel he was able to proceed with laying formal charges,” CIJA CEO Shimon Koffler Fogel said in a statement.

“We share the belief that the comments of one imam in particular clearly constitute hate speech and incitement to violence towards Jews and that only technical constraints precluded the Crown from laying charges at this time.”

French cities shut out hate speech comedian Dieudonné

Notorious French comedian Dieudonné, convicted of hate speech and condoning terrorism, will need to make alternative arrangements for his upcoming War tour after the mayors of Marseille and Grenoble barred his performances.

The mayor of Marseille, Jean-Claude Gaudin, announced Wednesday that his city will no longer permit Dieudonné to perform at its largest municipality-affiliated venue, the Dome, in November on grounds of public safety.

The Marseille mayor reached the decision following pressure from Jewish groups and local media to withdraw permission for the performance.

Dieudonné, whose full name is Dieudonné M’bala M’bala, has a long list of convictions for antisemitism, inciting racial hatred, condoning terrorism and tax evasion in both French and Belgian courts. His shows often draw large, animated protests.

Dieudonné is also known for his trademark “quenelle” gesture, an inverted Nazi salute which he insists is solely antiestablishment, and his offensive Holocaust-themed jokes.

Israel Has Answer to India’s Oriental Fruit Fly Menace

An Israeli company says it has developed a no-spray, environment-friendly solution that can protect Indian farmers from the deadly oriental fruit fly, which has destroyed 300 fruit species in India.

The Oriental Fruit Fly (Bactrocera dorsalis) is considered to be the most destructive, invasive and widespread of all fruit flies, and is also a menace in 65 other countries in Asia, Africa and the Americas.

Developed by Biofeed
The agri-tech company Biofeed’s “lures” hung on trees, contain an organic customised mix of food and feeding stimulants, and control or therapeutic agents delivered by a patented gravity-controlled fluid release platform.

Attracted by the odour, the fruit fly takes a sip and soon dies, without any chemicals reaching the fruit, air or soil.

“We were hoping to bring a solution that will replace spraying and increase productivity by 50 per cent. I am excited by the results, demonstrating the future potential for some farmers to bring about 900 times more marketable produce to the market,” said the company’s CEO Nimrod Israely.

“We don’t have the Oriental Fruit Fly in Israel. However, until now there was no solution for this problem. So we took the challenge and chose to focus on India,” Israely told Israel21c, an online news magazine.

Biofeed was one of the six innovative Israeli companies invited to give a demonstration to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu during the former’s July visit.

Israeli tech chosen to kill off invasive mussel species at Hoover Dam

Water purification technology developed by an Israeli firm has been chosen for use at the iconic Hoover Dam to prevent an invasive species of mussel from interfering with the dam’s electricity production.

The North Wind Group, a US company selected by the US government to work on piping at the Hoover Dam, chose Atlantium’s Hydro-Optic Ultraviolet technology to use for non-chemical biofouling control at the dam, Israel’s Atlantium said in a statement last month.

Biofouling is the buildup of plants and animals on wet surfaces such as the hulls of ships and piers.

Atlantium’s technology is designed to prevent fouling at Hoover Dam by the quagga mussel, which threatens to clog the turbine’s water cooling system and thus interfere with the dam’s electricity production.

Over the past decade, the mussel, which is believed to have arrived in the US from Asia, has made its way to Lake Mead, the large reservoir created by Hoover Dam.

Israeli Volunteers Treat Hundreds at Eye Clinic in Kenya

During the week of August 15-23, 2017, volunteers with Israel’s Eye from Zion humanitarian organization held an “eye camp” in Chuka, Kenya. They received 723 patients in three locations, from infants to senior citizens, performing free treatments and surgeries—85 percent of the surgeries to remove cataracts and 10% to correct astigmatism.

Medical personnel volunteering for this mission came from Western Galilee Medical Center in Nahariya, Bnai Zion Medical Center, Ma’ayan Clinic and Rambam Health Care Campus in Haifa, and Wolfson Medical Center in Holon.

Participants also layed the groundwork for an advanced eye clinic at Chuka Regional Hospital in memory of Hovav Nuttman, CEO of Israeli medical equipment supplier Alpha Net, who was a volunteer in charge of all the technical aspects for Eye from Zion missions to many countries. He passed away two months after returning from the organization’s first mission to Chuka in 2016.

Two Kenyan medical officers were trained to use the equipment, the hospital’s technical staff learned how to maintain the machinery and three nurses received training in surgical assistance. Additional equipment will be brought on a future visit.

“The local medical staff does not include an ophthalmologist or anyone with surgical skills,” said Eye from Zion founder Nati Marcus. “We met a young doctor, currently a resident in ophthalmology in Nairobi and due to arrive at Chuka hospital in 2019. We suggested that she come to Chuka next year to work with our future missions so when she will start her position she will have more experience in surgeries.”

One year on, Israel remembers Shimon Peres as memoirs released

Israel on Thursday paid tribute to Shimon Peres, one of its founding fathers and its ninth president, one year after he died at 93 after suffering a stroke.

The memorial ceremony on Mount Herzl in Jerusalem was led by President Reuven Rivlin and former British Prime Minister Tony Blair. Dozens of Israeli and foreign dignitaries attended the ceremony.

A convinced campaigner for Middle East peace who remained energetic until his final days, the center-left elder statesman was praised for his tireless engagement during seven decades in public life, including the development of Israel’s powerful military and nuclear capabilities to seeking peace with the Palestinians and sharing the 1994 Nobel Peace Prize with Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat.

The first anniversary of Peres’ death was also marked by the release of his memoir, “No Room for Small Dreams.”

Speaking at the service, Peres’ son, Chemi, said, “This book is a voice and a message for generations to come. He decided to write the book as a string of dreams that he had and realized, a string of great causes he served and a string of complicated situations and decisions that he had to take in life.

“One of the major topics my father wrote about in the book for the first time is the story of Dimona. The story of Israel’s nuclear facilities. The story that my father was the master of its creation and it is the project that actually allowed Israel to survive and create the right deterrent in a hostile region, and allowed us as a nation to strengthen our economy and to strive for peace.”

#ConanIsrael Sneak Peek: Bar Mitzvah – CONAN on TBS



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