April 3, 2020

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10/04 Links Pt2: Phillips: That UN reaction to ‘son of Hamas’; Collier: My name is Rachel ‘X’


From Ian:

Melanie Phillips: That UN reaction to ‘son of Hamas’
Please join me in this clip as I discuss with Avi Abelow of Israel Video Network the amazing, comical and oh-so-telling reaction of UN delegates to home truths being told to them by the “son of Hamas”.

David Collier: My name is Rachel ‘X’

On 2 October 1938, Arab ‘rioters’ infiltrated a Jewish neighbourhood in Tiberias. They first cut the telephone wires to frustrate calls for help. They then set about massacring innocent civilians. According to the British:

‘It was systematically organized and savagely executed. Of the nineteen Jews killed, including women and children, all save four were stabbed to death.’

There were about 70 armed Arabs involved in the attack, they set fire to Jewish homes and the local synagogue. According to Wiki ‘in one house a mother, and her five children were killed’.

Wiki doesn’t explain that the father, Shimon Mizrachi, was elsewhere, on guard duty protecting other families. Nor does the account give you the names and ages of those five murdered children. Ezra (aged twelve), Miriam (five), Yocheved (three), Samuel (two) and Hephzibah (one).

It doesn’t give you the mother’s name either. The mother’s name was Rachel.

The Rachel of Kiryat Shmona
Kiryat Shmona is about 35 miles from Tiberias. A city in the Northern District of Israel, near the Lebanese border.

On 11 April 1974, terrorists from the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) attacked civilians in Kiryat Shmona. These terrorists first tried to attack a school, but there was nobody inside. Instead they attacked a nearby residential building. Rehov (St) Yehuda Halevi number 15. They went from flat to flat in a barbaric killing spree. Eighteen people were murdered, half of them were children.

Anisa Stern (47) was one of the victims, killed alongside her eight-year-old daughter. The daughter’s name was Rachel
The Rachel of Ma’alot-Tarshiha

Just a few weeks after the massacre in Kiryat Shmona, on the 12th May 1974, a group of fifteen to seventeen year old students set out on a field trip of the Galilee. It was three days before Israel’s twenty-sixth Independence Day. It was a large student group and they had made arrangements to spend a night at the Netiv Meir School in Ma’alot.

Barry Shaw: The asymmetry of the Israel-Palestinian conflict

The international community ignores the misuse of funding to the Palestinian Authority with over $300 million allocated to terrorists and their families. Not only Hamas, but also the PA is a terror-ridden organization. Palestine Media Watch, in its latest report dated Sept. 27, revealed that the Palestinian Authority now has 75 schools named after terrorists or Nazi collaborators. One of these schools is funded by the Belgian government.

Both sides of the Palestinian political divide constantly make inflammatory anti-Semitic remarks when referring to Israel. Mahmoud Abbas has a long history of hitting at Jews as he assaults Israel.

While addressing the European Parliament on June 24, 2016, he accused rabbis of demanding the Israeli government poison Palestinian water. Prior to that, in another blatantly offensive anti-Semitic remark, he said that “we will not allow Jews with their filthy feet” to defile the Temple Mount.

Deep Palestinian anti-Semitism can be found in the infamous Hamas Charter, which quotes the hadith: “The stones and trees will say O Muslims, O Abdullah, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.”

This then is the asymmetry that prevents any possible solution to the impasse between Israel and the Palestinians.

It is not about borders or territory. It is about this deep schism between the two sides that has prevented progress for decades.

Until the international community faces up to this obvious obstacle of the ideological asymmetry between the two sides, do not expect a solution any day soon.

Forward: Practice What You Preach, Linda Sarsour

Sarsour also claimed that she lived by her words of intra-group education, telling the crowd that “[o]ne of the hardest things I have ever done is combating anti-black racism in the Arab-American community, challenging my own people on issues around racism, around anti-Semitism. That is my job to do, not your job to do.”

Has Sarsour done this job, and done it well? Does Sarsour practice what she preaches?

I don’t think so. While there are plenty of Palestinian advocates who are trying to find ways to bring about peace and fight for their cause while respecting Jewish sovereignty, I have not seen evidence of Sarsour attempting or succeeding at her self-assigned task of “challenging my own people around issues of anti-Semitism.”

I have seen the opposite. Sarsour has explicitly diminished the significance of anti-Semitism, qualifying its noxiousness in a video for Jewish Voice for Peace in April. “I want to make the distinction that while anti-Semitism is something that impacts Jewish Americans, it’s different than anti-black racism or Islamophobia because it’s not systemic,” she said. “Of course, you may experience vandalism or an attack on a synagogue, or maybe on an individual level, but it’s not systemic, and we need to make that distinction.”

Sarsour appears to believe that combatting anti-Semitism should be restricted to a very specific form of discrimination against Jews. Sarsour — and, unfortunately, many others — feel comfortable denouncing anti-Semitism only when it is in the form of far-right white supremacists, such as the horror we witnessed in Charlottesville.

But if you are genuinely going to claim to fight anti-Semitism, you cannot be selective about which forms of it to denounce. Indeed, there’s a much more routine form of anti-Semitism that Sarsour not only fails to denounce but may even participate in. If you’re singling out Israel to be expunged and think it’s the one country on the planet that needs to be dismantled, that laser-beam focus of destruction on the one Jewish state is another form of anti-Semitism. If you actively deny, denounce, and demonize a Jewish right to self-sovereignty but believe other religions, ethnicities and peoples are entitled to that dignity, it is very difficult for me to believe you are truly fighting anti-Semitism.

IsraellyCool: The PA’s Monumental Declaration of Intent

Israeli Avihai Shorshan decided to visit Ramallah, and took this photo outside of their municipality building.

He writes (translated into English from Hebrew):
I made a short visit to Ramallah and the surrounding area.

When I have time, I will write about it at length, but in the meantime this picture taken outside the town hall of al-Bireh, from my perspective says it all.

In Ramallah no one is interested in Yitzhar, Ma’aleh Adumim, Ariel or the Nativ Ha’avot. Their vision is to return to their homes in Jaffa, Lod, Acre, the Baka neighborhood of Jerusalem, Be’er Sheva and other places they lost when they did not agree to the Partition Plan in 1948.

They understand it well and are aiming for there with all their might, nothing else will satisfy them. I wish that the Israeli public would understand this declaration of intentions seriously and grasp it.

And we know it is not the only such monument.

Of course, this is not news, especially to regular Israellycool readers. We know our “peace partners” of the PA are anything but. We know they just wear nicer suits than Hamas, but are after the same thing. We know of their incitement and payments to “martyrs”. And we know of their love of maps depicting the entire land of Israel, representing their true goals.

But here’ the thing. This is not some map that can be hidden when international guests – including world leaders – visit. Quite the opposite! This is a huge monument that sticks out. It is meant to be seen.

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Wipes Israel Off the Map

Israel – a UN member state – was erased from the map and replaced with “Palestine” at a seminar held at UN Headquarters on October 3, 2017. The event was “organized by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights,” and entitled: “Introducing the Arab Network for National Human Rights Institutions and its Role in the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights in the Arab Region.” The UN used its extraordinary facilities to webcast the event – and the map – around the world.

The map appeared on two occasions, as part of a video played during the UN-sponsored event. Lest anyone miss the point, the map named Arab states in blue and left non-Arab states unnamed in white spaces. All of Israel was in blue and labeled “Palestine.”

The event was advertised in the UN’s Daily Journal for October 3, 2017, which carried the announcement that “all are invited.” The Journal also spelled out that the High Commissioner’s Office held the event “in collaboration with the Arab Network for National Human Rights Institutions.” The network is a group of institutions located in the following 15 non-democracies: Sudan, “Palestine,” Libya, Egypt, Jordan, Iraq, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, Djibouti, Comoros, Mauritania, Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia. Only two of these states even have diplomatic relations with Israel.

A representative from the Arab Network admitted to the assembled that the “human rights” institutions within each of these non-democracies were bought and paid for by the states themselves. In his words: “the state must fund these institutions.” And he described “the relationship between the country and the institution as very close…because the governments have established them.”

Major Jewish Group Slams Iranian Bid to Head UNESCO Executive Board

A major Jewish organization has slammed Iran’s bid to chair the Executive Board of UNESCO, the UN’s cultural organization.

Shimon Samuels — the Simon Wiesenthal Center’s director for international relations — expressed opposition to Iran’s candidacy in a letter he sent this week to outgoing UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova (the election will be held next month, at UNESCO’s 39th General Conference in Paris). He pointed to Iran’s long history of human rights abuses, in particular its rejection of gender equality.

Samuels emphasized the Islamic Republic’s murder of over 30,000 political dissidents in 1988, which included using a UNESCO world heritage candidate site to kill prisoners, some of them younger than 18.

He also noted Iran’s rejection of UNESCO’s own June 2017 agenda item calling for gender equality in education. This was “violently revoked” by the Islamic Republic’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who said, “The regime will not abide by the UNESCO 2030 terms to expand and equalize education for all. One of the main mistakes of the Western mentality about women is raising the very issue of gender equality.”

Furthermore, the letter highlighted Iran’s suppression of press freedoms. “UNESCO World Press Freedom Day was marked by the arrest of print, television and online journalists,” Samuels wrote.

Samuels went on to say that all of this did not even touch upon “Jewish concerns,” which include “Holocaust denial cartoon contests, nuclear ambitions, ballistic missiles, incitement against and declarations of genocidal intent to annihilate Israel.”

UK Cabinet Minister Michael Gove: “Anti-Zionism Is Anti-Semitism”

A senior cabinet minister has told hundreds of Conservative Friends of Israel supporters that “anti-Zionism is anti-Semitism”.

Environment Secretary, Brexit backer and Israel advocate Michael Gove made the comment to 500 guests on Monday night, during his keynote speech at the CFI event in Manchester.

Also present in the room were Communities Minister Sajid Javid, Defence Minister Tobias Ellwood and Foreign and Commonwealth Office Minister Rory Stewart, together with former minister Sir Eric Pickles.

Gove said Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn chose “death-squads over democrats” while saluting pro-Israel Labour MPs Joan Ryan and Ian Austin for their “fantastic job in standing up for Jewish people’s right to self-determination”.

He concluded: “At a time when people say that ‘I’m not an anti-Semite, I’m just anti-Zionist,’ it is important that we should say no, anti-Zionism is anti-Semitism.”

French PM reveals new strategy to combat ‘shameful’ antisemitism

Amid ongoing concerns over the mounting threat of antisemitism and Islamist terror, French Prime Minister Édouard Philippe announced “a new plan to combat antisemitism” during a speech at Paris’s Buffault Synagogue on Monday.

Speaking at a ceremony following the Jewish New Year, Philippe revealed that the plan, set to be implemented from 2018 to 2020, will be “conceived and developed in close partnership with civil society and obviously [the Jewish community].”

One of the key objectives of the new plan, the French premier explained, is to fight online antisemitism. In particular, he added, the need to counter hate that has “overrun social media” and which should not remain unpunished.

“A sustainable fight against antisemitism necessarily calls for prevention, through education and culture,” said Philippe.

In recent years, France has suffered a wave of terror attacks, including several targeting the country’s Jewish community. Philippe mentioned the kidnap and murder of Ilan Halimi in 2006, the killing of four Jews at Toulouse’s Ozar HaTorah school in 2012, the attack on the Hyper Casher kosher supermarket in January 2015 and the April 2017 murder of Sarah Halimi in Paris as examples of “the ultra-violence of Islamist terrorism and barbarism.”

“When someone attacks a French citizen because of his background or his beliefs,” Philippe added, “he attacks France and what it holds most precious: its way of life, its values, its heritage… And when you insult a French citizen for these reasons, you insult the memory of those who have given their life to ensure that these values prevail.”

JPost Editorial: How Nuseir Yassin’s latest video sheds light on BDS absurdity

At its best, BDS is a movement of clueless activists motivated by a simplistic and tragically flawed conception of reality. At its worst, BDS is crude antisemitism that seeks to single out the world’s only Jewish-majority nation for unique punishment.

To succeed, BDS needs both. There are millions of well-intentioned Americans and Europeans searching for a cause but who lack even an elementary grasp of the conflict (the size of the populations involved; the land under dispute; the history of the conflict; the realities of contemporary Israeli and Palestinian politics). And there are bonafide Jew-haters (some of them Jews) in leadership positions who dupe the clueless masses into believing that Israelis are rapacious white imperialists and Palestinians are innocent natives who are justly enraged at being unjustly dispossessed of their land.

Darkness and misunderstanding facilitate the BDS movement. But there are also rare moments of light and clarity.

A single one-minute video produced by an Israeli Arab from the Lower Galilee that has gone viral on social media in recent days gives the world a glimpse of the intricacies of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the absurdities of BDS as a global movement.

Nuseir Yassin, who has spent the last year and a half traveling the world producing a one-minute video per day with the aim of breaking down prejudice and stereotypes, focused this week on BDS. On Sunday, Yassin posted a video of his experience being denied service by Kuwait Airlines because he is Israeli. Yassin was on his way from New York to India, but when he flashed his Israeli passport, he was dropped from the flight. Kuwait Airlines has a policy of boycotting Israel.

“Because I’m an Israeli, an entire airline is not allowed to take me on their plane even if I’m not going to Kuwait,” he said in the video. This behavior, he said, is discriminatory and “should be illegal.”

Here in a single video were many of the complexities of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the internal contradictions of BDS. Though self-described “Zionist” advocates of BDS claim it is possible to use it selectively against only settlements, which they see as an obstacle to peace, the reality is that the boycott movement often hurts Arabs and Palestinians just as much as, if not more than, Israelis, let alone settlers.

Adelson group changes how it’s selling Israel on campus

A group of student leaders from a major American university meets in eastern Jerusalem with Palestinian students on the campus of Al-Quds University, named for Jerusalem, the city Palestinians hope will one day be their capital.

It’s the kind of encounter that once might have sent Sheldon Adelson and other right-wing pro-Israel givers into a tizzy — except it’s the casino magnate and philanthropist who is funding the meeting.

Two years ago, when he launched The Maccabee Task Force to fight the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel on campus, mainstream pro-Israel student groups were wary of Adelson’s reputation as a hard-line right-winger. Now the organization is quietly making inroads among progressives on campuses that have been the focus of anti-Israel activity.

Moreover, the group, helmed by David Brog, who is on the board at Christians United for Israel, is working with Hillel, one of the establishment groups that initially held Adelson and his initiative at arm’s length.

“We are very grateful for the really impactful activities to change the conversation about Israel,” said Sarita Bronstein, the Hillel director at San Jose State University. In 2015, the campus became among the first to pass a student resolution favoring BDS.

IsraellyCool: Boy George Determined to Play in Israel Despite “Abuse We Get”

I almost missed this tweet from pop icon boy George, set to play in Israel on November 7th.

No word on which band member refused to play – I guess we will find out soon enough – but kudos to George for his support in the face of the abuse. And his enthusiasm to play.

Proof the accusation of “Israeli Apartheid” is just anti-Jewish bias

Why is the “Apartheid” accusation not made against dozens of Islamic and Christian states?

Anti-Israel activists regularly, and with never-ending repetition, claim that Israel is an “Apartheid state” because if favors Jews over non-Jews. This accusation is a key part of the strategy to delegitimize Israel, and was developed in 2001 as part of the Durban conference boycott call.

That boycott call, based on the accusation of Apartheid, was the foundation of the current Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, as I discussed in my lecture, The REAL history of the BDS movement.

“Israel Apartheid Week” events are held on dozens of campuses annually, and are a critical component of the plan to delegitimize and ultimately destroy Israel.

The Israeli security barrier, built after several hundred Israeli civilians were murdered in suicide bombings and shootings during the Second Intifada, regularly is called “the Apartheid Wall,” such as in this display at Columbia.

The Apartheid accusation routinely is made by anti-Israel activists, like Jewish Voice for Peace/Code Pink activist, Ariel Gold, pictured below wearing a “Boycott Israeli Apartheid” hat while blocking the entrance to an AIPAC conference.

The claim is made that there are some Israeli laws that favor Jews, and that is proof of Apartheid. That claim is made even in the Black Lives Matter platform, which has been hijacked by anti-Israel activists:

Israel is an apartheid state with over 50 laws on the books that sanction discrimination against the Palestinian people.

That claim of “50 laws” is based on a misleading list prepared by a Palestinian group, Adalah, and is disputed:

A terrorist defies the BBC’s narrative

The BBC initially reported that attack in a belated thirty-four word paragraph and subsequent reporting failed to clarify that the incident was a terror attack. The terrorist’s arrest and indictment did not receive any BBC coverage and so audiences did not receive any information concerning the motive behind the murder.
“Before launching the attack, Awad confided in his son that he had religious motivation, saying that, “according to Islam, whoever kills a Jew goes to heaven.””
Such cases do not of course fit into the BBC’s chosen narrative of Palestinian terrorism caused by “frustration” at “decades of Israeli occupation” and audiences therefore do not get to hear about them.

Threatening anti-Semitic flyer sent to Brooklyn kosher bakery

An anti-Semitic flyer that threatens Jews sent to a kosher bakery in Brooklyn is under investigation by police.

The notice sent to the Weiss Bakery in the haredi Orthodox neighborhood of Borough Park this week read: “MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!!! JUDEN RAUS (jews out). N*****S AND F*****S MUST BURN IN HELL. CHRISTIAN IDENTITY IS BACK.” Above the words is a black swastika surrounded by a white circle on a red background

Weiss Bakery contacted Assemblyman Dov Hikind (D-Brooklyn) after receiving the flyer, the New York news channel PIX 11 reported. Hikind helped the bakery file a police complaint.

“In light of what’s going on the world, all threats must be taken very seriously,” said Hikind. “We’re not waiting for an incident before addressing a threat.”

Hikind posted a copy of the flyer on his Twitter feed.

Top Democratic Senator Urges State Department to Not Send Collection of Jewish Artifacts Back to Iraq

Top Democratic Senator Charles Schumer on Tuesday called on the State Department to “reconsider” the impending return of a collection of over 2,700 Jewish artifacts to Iraq.

The artifacts — which had been seized by the regime of the late Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein — were found by American troops in Baghdad in 2003 and brought to the US. The American government spent $3 million to preserve the collection, which has been displayed across the country.

The original deadline for the collection to be sent back to Iraq was in 2014, but that was extended in agreement with the Iraqi government.

Last month, the State Department said that the collection would be delivered back to Iraq in September 2018.

“Maintaining the archive outside of Iraq is possible, but would require a new agreement between the Government of Iraq and a temporary host institution or government,” State Department spokesman Pablo Rodriguez was quoted as saying by JTA at the time.

On Tuesday, Schumer — the Senate minority leader from New York — stated, “This collection does not belong to the Iraqi government, it belongs to the ancient and proud Iraqi Jewish community — many now here in the States — that was exiled many years ago and forced to leave their belongings behind.”

Amazon expanding in Israel

Amazon is expanding in Israel, setting up Alexa Shopping teams in two cities.

The company will open research and development groups in Haifa and Tel Aviv with a total of 100 employees at the start, Globes reported. Alexa is a digital personal assistant developed by Amazon that allows users to shop online using voice commands.

Amazon said in an announcement that it is seeking to hire scientists, software engineers and product managers for the two offices.

The company recently hired Eyal Itah, former Microsoft Israel development director, as general manager of the Alexa Shopping engineering team, and Yoelle Maarek, who was the former research director at Yahoo! and ran its Haifa development center, as vice president of worldwide research.

Amazon has been active in Israel for the past several years. In early 2015 it purchased the Israeli cloud computing company Annapurna Labs.

Defense firm Elbit inks $570M deals in US, Asia-Pacific, Africa

Israeli defense contractor Elbit Systems announced a series of deals signed over the past week to the tune of over $570 million.

Haifa-based Elbit is considered one of the world’s top defense contractors. It develops primarily defense electronic systems and operates in the fields of aerospace, land and naval systems, command, control, communications, computers, intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance systems, unmanned aircraft systems, electro-optics, signal intelligence, data links and communications systems and radios.

The Company also focuses on the upgrading of existing platforms, developing new technologies for defense, homeland security, and commercial applications and providing a range of support services, including training and simulation systems.

On Tuesday, the company announced that its U.S.-based subsidiary, Elbit Systems of America, was awarded a $31.5 million contract by the Defense Logistics Agency Land and Maritime, a combat support agency in the United States Defense Department, to provide it with aviator night vision imaging system head-up displays. The work will be performed over a two-year period.

“Elbit Systems of America is committed to providing America’s warfighters with the very best in advanced technology HUD,” said Raanan Horowitz, CEO of Elbit Systems of America. “We are a proven and trusted partner for component capabilities critical for platform mission readiness.”

US’s Avery Dennison invests in Israeli smart-glass startup Gauzy

Avery Dennison Corp., a US-based maker of labeling and packaging materials, said Tuesday it has made an investment in Israeli startup Gauzy, a developer of liquid crystal glass materials and films for use in a variety of industries. No financial details were disclosed.

This is the second announced investment of Glendale, California-based Avery in an Israeli firm, after the New York Stock Exchange-traded firm, with a market value of almost $9 billion, said in December last year it would buy Israel’s Hanita Coatings, a pressure sensitive materials manufacturer of specialty films and laminates.

“The investment is a strategic one” and will allow Avery Dennison to incorporate Gauzy’s technology into its product offering, said Eyal Peso, CEO and co-founder of Gauzy, in a phone interview. “Avery will help us expand our research and development capabilities and also use their distribution network to sell Gauzy products all over the world.”
Gauzy’s CEO and founder Eyal Peso (Courtesy)

Based in Tel Aviv, Gauzy’s “smart glass” products bring high technology to glass, films and other materials, allowing for a number of applications, including controlling the transparency of windows to light, making a window go from clear to frosted at a touch of a button and creating optical blinds within the glass.

Jewish comedian Elon Gold prepares to crack jokes in Israel

Elon Gold sees himself as a little bit like Radiohead. The actor and stand-up comedian may have some fame and recognition in the US, where he lives, but in Israel he’s a rock star.

“I performed last year in Ra’anana for Kids Kicking Cancer and I remember being shocked we sold out this big theater in two days,” Gold recalled. “Oh my goodness, I’m a star in Israel… I’m not a star anywhere else but Israel. Radiohead used to say that they were stars in Israel before anywhere else in the world.” The band’s first-ever international gig was in Tel Aviv in 1993.

Now Gold is coming to perform again in Israel for the third time, playing three benefit shows for StandWithUs: two in Jerusalem and one in Herzliya over Sukkot.

While he doesn’t do many shows in the Holy Land, the clips Gold posts on social media garner hundreds of thousands of views, gaining him a cult status among a certain type of Israeli.

“My videos are going crazy viral over there, my shows are selling out there,” said Gold in a recent phone interview from Los Angeles. “Sure, I have a Netflix special and some people in the US know me; but for me, Israel is really the first place to fully and wholly embrace me as a comedian.”

Israeli Olympic judo medalist retires, says she’s ‘fulfilled’

Olympic-winning Israeli judoka Yarden Gerbi announced her retirement from the sport at a press conference on Monday.

The 28-year-old, who grew up in the central city of Kfar Saba, took a bronze at the 2016 Olympics in Rio.

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She is the second Israeli woman to win an Olympic medal, following judoka Yael Arad’s silver medal at the 1992 Barcelona games.

A tearful Gerbi told the press conference that after returning from an elbow injury sustained after her Olympic win, “I felt that the fire in me was going out.”

“I didn’t have the energy to give my all on the [judo] mat… I’m fulfilled, I don’t have the strength to get more out of myself… It was just a question of time.”

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