Alan Johnson: Corbyn is one man. Left-Wing Antisemitism is a Tradition
Antisemitic forms of anti-Zionism have roots in the UK far left going back decades. Before Corbyn’s victory in 2015 the UK far left tried in the mid 1980s to ban Jewish Student Societies on campuses because they were ‘Zionist’. Sunderland Polytechnic did so. A group Corbyn sponsored ran a piece titled ‘Why we support Sunderland Polytechnic’ and said the ban was not ‘in any way antisemitic’.
Move on a few decades and look at this cartoon. It circulated on the radical left and is a kind of summa of how the old socialism of fools has been blended with the new anti-imperialism of idiots and has then gone viral on social media. And you can be sure that those who created it and circulated it thought it ‘in no way antisemitic’.
The left needs to learn that antisemitism is the most protean and changeable of hatreds and it has shape-shifted yet again. Yes, Labour was poisoned in part by the flourishing of ‘classic’ anti-Jewish stereotypes and slurs in the party, as my 2019 report recorded. (There were even a few ‘Hitler was right’ types, believe it or not.) But the heart of the problem was ‘anti-Zionism’ of such an obsessive, conspiracist and demonising kind that it long ago left the terrain of ‘legitimate criticism of Israeli policy’ and merged itself with an older set of classical antisemitic tropes, images and assumptions to create antisemitic anti-Zionism.
There are legitimate criticisms to be made of Israel, as there are of every nation-state. Ringing up a Jewish Labour MP and calling her a ‘Zionist C***’ is not one of them. Nor is tweeting that Israel creating ISIS.
In short, that which the demonised Jew once was in older forms of antisemitism, demonised Israel now is in contemporary antisemitic anti-Zionism: all-controlling, the hidden hand, tricksy, always acting in bad faith, the obstacle to a better, purer, more spiritual world, uniquely malevolent, full of blood lust, uniquely deserving of punishment, and so on.’
Yes, disciplinary action should now follow. It is right that Corbyn has been suspended. But it will be even more important to wage a battle of ideas against antisemitic anti-Zionism. But the useful left-wing idiots who protected Corbyn for four years are legion. They infest a bio-degraded UK left and UK academia. So here is an idea: the party should turn for help to those of us on the left who have spent a good part of our professional and political lives understanding, fighting and defeating left-wing antisemitism. We just might know something.
David Collier: Yes, the EHRC is out – be ready to fight again at dawn
The EHRC fallout – Jezza – your part in his downfall
I was reporting on antisemitism in the party long before most. In Autumn 2015, after Corbyn’s leadership victory, it felt like a lonely and uphill struggle. Few wanted to see the truth. We are diaspora Jews – we do not like to be seen to be rocking any boats.
It took far too long for some in the community to wake up and realise the dangers that antisemitism on the left poses. The problems that pro-Corbyn elements presented for us as Jews in the UK. There was ignorance about how antisemitism has masked itself and naivety over how quickly it spreads. Until spring 2018 a sense of ‘it will pass’ or ‘can’t happen here’ was still the order of the day.
For now, lots of people are climbing to the top of the hill, metaphorically holding the head of Corbyn aloft and crowing about how they (or their organisation) are heroes. It is my hope that this pause in fighting to chest-beat and celebrate is a brief one. Does our community possess both the understanding to realise the battle is not done and the courage to accept the boat must be rocked even further? I am not sure it does.
We must turn our attention to campus. The unions must also be fought. And on the political front, Jezza’s army – that sees the EHRC only as the establishment protecting itself – is still out there – and it is far larger than it was in 2015. Many local Labour Party groups remain toxic and hostile. Does anyone really believe that the antisemitic Palestine Solidarity Campaign – which actively spreads Jew hatred – will be unwelcome at the next Labour Party Conference?
Celebrate if you must, but make sure you are ready to fight again when dawn comes.
Melanie Phillips: Britain’s Labour Party will struggle to erase its moral stain
On both sides of the Atlantic, the major drivers of Israel demonization and delegitimization are the universities. The United States took action to address this last year when President Donald Trump signed an executive order banning anti-Semitic behavior and actions at colleges and universities that receive federal funding.
Further key promoters of this infamy are some of the giant international NGOs such as Amnesty International, Oxfam, Human Rights Watch and others. People assume these to be run by people of conscience committed to relieving poverty and oppression.
At a time of unprecedented loss of trust in politicians and other authority figures, NGOs such as these therefore have a massive influence. They have become, in effect, a secular church. In fact, they often peddle pure poison about Israel, singling it out for wildly unfair and twisted condemnation while sanitizing or ignoring the Palestinians’ murderous targeting of Israeli civilians.
Once again, it’s the Trump administration that is leading the world in trying to tackle this, with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo pushing to brand several of them anti-Semitic and withdraw federal funding from them.
Of course, it’s naive to think that the world’s oldest hatred can ever be eradicated. The best we can hope for is to push it back under its stone. To do that, however, it has to be correctly called out and its proponents treated as social pariahs.
But to do that on the left means progressively minded people must acknowledge that, in this instance, their anti-racism is actually racism, and they are not on the side of the angels at all.
The problem is that the left can never accept that they are not always on the side of virtue. And that’s why the anti-Semitism within the Labour Party, as more generally in progressive circles, is a moral stain that won’t go away.
David Hirsh: The ‘Livingstone formula’ is dead
The EHRC has crystallised a new legal precedent that the ‘Livingstone Formulation’ is antisemitic. It has added to the IHRA definition of antisemitism a new archetype of antisemitic behaviour.
I first named the Livingstone Formulation in 2006 after Livingstone’s bizarre spat with a Jewish journalist, whom he accused of being like a Nazi. Instead of apologising, Livingstone came back with an aggressive counter-accusation against those who said his late night ranting had been antisemitic. “For far too long the accusation of antisemitism has been used against anyone who is critical of the policies of the Israeli government, as I have been.”
The Macpherson principle says that if a black person says they have experienced racism you should begin by assuming that they are right. The Livingstone principle says: if Jews complain about antisemitism on the left then you should begin by assuming that they are making it up to silence criticism of Israel or to smear the left.
It is antisemitic conspiracy fantasy because it doesn’t just say that Jews sometimes get it wrong, but that they know full well they’re wrong and they say it anyway, to increase their power.
The Livingstone Formulation is the key mode of antisemitic bullying mobilised against Jews on the left. It treats Jews as alien to the left and as treasonous. Pete Willsman accused the 60 rabbis of being Trump fanatics. Such an accusation is a way, rhetorically, of deporting Jews from their political home and making them homeless.
Livingstone himself was thrown overboard by the Corbynites in an effort to save their own skins and he has now been singled out in the EHRC report as a key example of Labour antisemitism. But Corbyn has now been thrown overboard too and is reunited with his old comrade Livingstone. There is justice in that, since they have always shared the same antisemitic politics.
Today, Sharansky sees some of the same forces that acted on him in the Soviet Union—anti-Semitic anti-Zionism that demonized the Jewish state, and an expectation that he truncate his Jewish identity to fit the dominant ideology—at work on American Jews. To be sure, the United States is not the Soviet Union; but that does not make these forces any less frightening. I asked Sharansky whether American Jews, who are facing these pressures for the first time in their lives, might not benefit from examining the experience of Soviet Jews in greater depth.
Sharansky agreed. For one thing, there is something to be learned from the Soviet Jews’ “Jewish pride” that developed “as a response to anti-Semitism.” Another valuable aspect is their holistic understanding of anti-Semitism.
“In Russia there was no difference between anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism,” said Sharansky. “Soviet Jews knew that both the anti-cosmopolitan campaign and anti-Zionist campaigns were campaigns against Jews.”
Ideological loyalty tests are fast becoming normal parts of American institutional and social life. If the recent trend to “cancel” those who fail to comply is any indication, many may soon be facing Sharansky’s choice: to live in truth or retreat into the splintered life of doublethink. For the Jews, there are additional factors to consider. They include an ability to live in the fullness of their Jewish identity or excising the “undesirable” parts such as their connection to Israel. Sharansky shows that the path of least resistance—self-censorship and doublethink—is not nearly as cost-free as one might think.
When Sharansky stepped down from his position as the head of the Jewish Agency, he gave his successor a piece of advice: “To enjoy your job, not only for nine years but even for one minute, you have to answer one question: Do you love the Jewish people?” For Sharansky, the answer is an unequivocal yes. It is a question, and a challenge, that he directs at all of us. Pluralism and diversity of opinions is one of the Jewish people’s greatest strengths, Sharansky and Troy write. But we also must remember that even as we debate each other vigorously, our goal is not to win. It is, instead, “to continue our journey together,” as one people.
The narrative of the victory and the liberation of Latvia from Nazism was filled with anguish and despair when the soldiers began to confront the aftermath of the Holocaust. Even though many of them knew about the Aktion in Riga (Rumbula Massacre on Nov. 30 and Dec. 8, 1941) already in early 1943, they learned about the full scale of mass killing only when the Red Army returned to Latvia in 1944. Whereas Dov Zahodin confirms that many young Jews, including him, took pride in parading through the streets of Riga as the victors of the war against Nazism, the encounters with the Holocaust and the effects of the purging of Latvia from Jews was devastating upon the soldiers. The veterans confirmed that they found Jewish survivors only in Riga. In the eastern region of Latvia there was “nobody.”
Israel Friedman remembers how upon the liberation of Riga he went to search for the Jews at the registration office of the survivors, where, together with a Russian sergeant and a Jewish officer, he helped to register Jewish residents of Riga, who managed to survive German occupation. The feelings of grief and torment after the victory left many soldiers wandering around the republic to find their relatives and friends who were left behind in 1941. In December 1945, Menachem Epstein was released from the army and went to Liepaja to find out about the fate of his relatives, collecting on his way the stories of the Holocaust in Liepaja. Epstein’s account of the Jewish victory over Nazism in Latvia was the following: “we knew that many Latvians collaborated with the Nazis in the mass killings of the Jews; many went abroad, some walked on the streets … but there was no desire of revenge.”
For many Zionist Jewish combatants, life in Soviet Latvia had no future. Israel Friedman remembers how, after completing his task of finding Jewish survivors of the Holocaust in Riga, he got in contact with other Jews and discussed the possibility of Briha to the Eretz Israel: “at that time, I was almost an officer, in Jelgava was released from the service, and then we began our route to Palestine.”
The spirit of volunteerism of the young Latvian Zionists, especially in the first phase of the creation of the Latvian national formations, was neither derived significantly from their loyalty to the Soviet motherland, nor was it the product of Soviet war propaganda. They did not have any particular attachment to Latvia nor Soviet patriotism. Their status in the Latvian national divisions was disruptive to the historical narrative of the Soviet-Latvian effort against Nazi Germany, but they nevertheless took pride in the fact that they contributed to the Soviet war effort against Nazi Germany. What they certainly had in common was their strong ethnic identity and the motivation to fight together against the Germans as Jews under the banner of the Red Army, which made them a capable force in a Jewish war of survival.
Adapted from “Jewish Warfare on the Shores of the River of Daugava: Zionist Combatants of the Latvian Military Formations of the Red Army Remember World War II,” the Kornberg-Jezierski Family Memorial Essay Prize in Holocaust Studies, University of Toronto, 2016. Reprinted with permission.
An Anglo-Arab regime controlled Libya until independence in 1951. The administration would not let Jews leave. Emigration was only legalised in January 1949. Those desperate enough were smuggled across the Mediterranean in overcrowded boats from September 1948. Some 1,300 made it to Israel via Italy between 1947 and 1949.
According to Danielle Willard-Kyle (21.30 into the video) who has made a study of the inmates of the DP camps, an additional complication is that many fleeing Libyan Jews did not have citizenship, or had been stripped of their citizenship. Arriving in the DP camps, some pretended to have Eastern European citizenship.
The international community, in the shape of the International Refugee Organisation (IRO), which had been set up to deal with the massive postwar refugee crisis, callously refused to recognise Libyan escapees as refugees. The IRO went so far as to claim that they were economic migrants. They would therefore not be eligible for asylum benefits.
The American Joint Distribution Committee, which cared for the humanitarian needs of Jews, insisted that those who had made it to Italy were bona fide refugees. But the IRO argued that if they helped the Jews, they would have to help the Arab refugees fleeing from Palestine. If the Joint had not intervened, these Jews would have been repatriated to Libya, not allowed to continue their journey to Palestine.
The Arab problem was soon dealt with by the creation of UNWRA, dedicated to this day, to helping Palestnian ‘refugees. The case of the Libyan Jews in DP camps seems to be the perfect example of an international double standard when it comes to Jewish refugees.
The Times, wrote Aris Roussinos recently in the British publication UnHerd, “is no longer predominantly engaged in descriptive analysis of the rest of the world but instead in telling its readers moral fables about the U.S.; parables in which the rest of the world features as mere local colour.” In the paper’s coverage of Brexit and English politics generally, he writes, “Britain itself, with all its complexities, is reduced to a mere shadow play for American journalists to tell their readers improving stories about themselves.”
France and Britain are not the only countries that the Times helps its readers to understand as distant reflections of us. In a December 2017 editorial, the Times expressed grave concerns that Trump’s plans to relocate the U.S. Embassy in Israel to Jerusalem “almost certainly will make an agreement harder to reach by inflaming doubts about America’s honesty and fairness as a broker in negotiations, raising new tension in the region and perhaps inciting violence.” When the new embassy was eventually opened in May of 2018, the Times’ solemn coverage suggested its fears had been justified. An article titled “Killings in Gaza, New Embassy in Jerusalem, and Peace as Distant as Ever” assessed that Israel’s response to Palestinian protests and attempts to breach the country’s southern security perimeter had “restored international attention to the Palestinian cause with each one-sided casualty report, and revived Hamas’s flagging political fortunes.” The article quoted Aaron David Miller, a former White House official and fixture of Washington, D.C.’s foreign policy mandarin class. The embassy would energize not only Hamas but other jihadist groups as well, Miller warned, galvanizing “a national and religious issue around which to rally: Defense of Jerusalem.”
All of that was wrong; it was a fantasy, the politics of a narrow class of Americans projected onto a distant place whose symbolic meaning was allowed to overcome reality on the ground. In fact, the much-warned-about eruption of violence in the Arab world never occurred. Hamas is more marginalized than ever. International attention to the Palestinian cause, which has always been fickle, was not revived and, in fact, diminished considerably under the Trump administration, for reasons that are only partly about American actions. The point here is not the failure of Middle East analysis, which is hardly unique to the Times, but the fact that the paper’s view of the Middle East was constructed out of a set of talking points generated in D.C. and New York that had no connection to the real dynamics in the region, and which remained immune to all but the most superficial airbrushing even after they were shown to be false.
Kingsley has some Israel experience already, but it’s not at all encouraging. A March 2020 article he wrote from Israel for the Times carried a whopper of a correction: “An earlier version of this article referred incorrectly to the number of Israelis who are of Arab ethnicity. It is about one in five, not two in five. The article also misstated Arab turnout in Israeli elections. Turnout fell below 50 percent in the April election, but it is not the case that turnout has been below that level historically.” Left uncorrected in the article was the claim that President Trump and Prime Minister Netanyahu’s Middle East peace plan “would annex large tracts of Palestinian land.” As I wrote then, “It’s not accurate for the Times to describe it as ‘Palestinian land.’ Usually they call it the West Bank, or, sometimes, Israeli-occupied territory. Some Israelis refer to it as Judea and Samaria. Whether it is or isn’t Palestinian land is what the Israelis and Palestinians have been intermittently negotiating about or fighting about for decades. To call it Palestinian land is to take one side — the Palestinian one — in that dispute.”
An April 2019 front-page Times article by Kingsley about antisemitism was full of inaccuracies, including the false assertion that “For decades after World War II and the Holocaust, anti-Semitism was mostly consigned to the political fringes.” The same article falsely claimed that Netanyahu’s government “has forbidden non-Jews to exercise the right to self-determination, and removed Arabic as an official Israeli language.” I commented then, “Leave it to the New York Times to turn a front-page article on antisemitism into a vehicle for spreading destructive falsehoods about the Jewish state and its prime minister.”
Apparently that is the sort of thing that, at the New York Times, wins someone promotion to a plum post at a young age.
The Times memo announcing Kingsley’s appointment reported that he failed the British driver’s license test seven times before finally passing on the eighth try. One admires his persistence while at the same time wondering precisely how many more Kingsley failures will be inflicted on long-suffering Times readers. I wish him rapid improvement to passing level on the accuracy front, and good luck in the new job.
The Tikvah Podcast: John Podhoretz on 75 Years of Commentary
In November of 1945, the American Jewish Committee established a new, independent magazine of Jewish ideas, with the goal of explaining America to the Jews and the Jews to the America. This month, Commentary marks 75 years of publishing about everything from culture, politics, and history to foreign affairs, Israel, and Jewish thought. During that time, it has proven to be one of America’s most influential journals of public affairs and central fora for great Jewish debates. The late Irving Kristol is said to have called it the most important Jewish magazine in history. He was probably right.
In the history of American Jewish letters, Commentary is responsible for bringing Phillip Roth, Bernard Malamud, and Cynthia Ozick to the attention of the reading public. During the cold war, the magazine fought against the then-reigning foreign-policy paradigms of both the Republican and Democratic parties. Not one, but two separate Commentary essays helped secure their authors’—Daniel Patrick Moynihan and Jean Kirkpatrick—appointments as United Nations Ambassadors. And in the field of Jewish and Zionist ideas thought, the magazine has over the years published such leading Jewish scholars as Gershom Scholem, Emil Fackenheim, Leon Kass, and Ruth Wisse.
Commentary was for many years edited by the legendary Norman Podhoretz, who was followed by Neal Kozodoy (now Mosaic’s editor-at-large); it is now led by John Podhoretz, the guest of this podcast. In this conversation with Mosaic Editor Jonathan Silver—inspired by the magazine’s 75th anniversary issue—Podhoretz looks back at his own history with Commentary, reflects on the work of an editor, recalls how Commentary shaped American Jewish history, and articulates why Commentary still matters three-quarters of a century after its birth.
Britain’s main opposition Labour party was in turmoil on Friday, a day after it suspended its former leader Jeremy Corbyn following his response to a damning government watchdog report that said the party had broken equality laws in its handling of anti-Semitism complaints.
After the decision to suspend Corbyn, the former leader’s allies lined up behind his vow to “strongly contest” the “political” move to suspend him, while senior Labour figures rallied around new chairman Kier Starmer, who succeeded Corbyn in April.
Speaking Friday morning, Starmer said: “I don’t want a split in the Labour Party. I stood as leader of the Labour Party on the basis I would unite the party, but also that I would tackle anti-Semitism.”
“I think both of those can be done, there’s no reason for a civil war in our party. But we are absolutely determined, I am absolutely determined, to root out anti-Semitism,” he told Sky News.
Responding to a devastating investigation released Thursday by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) investigation — which found there were “serious failings” by the party’s leadership under Corbyn when it came to anti-Semitism, that its handling of the issue broke the Equalities Act, that Jewish people were harassed, and that Labour had “inadequate processes” for handling complaints — Corbyn said he didn’t accept all of its findings. He asserted that “the scale of the problem was also dramatically overstated for political reasons by our opponents inside and outside the party, as well as by much of the media.”
Labour promptly said it was suspending Corbyn “in light of his comments made today and his failure to retract them subsequently.”
A landmark moment: read the JC’s special edition on the EHRC report
— The Jewish Chronicle (@JewishChron) October 29, 2020
— Eye On Antisemitism (@AntisemitismEye) October 30, 2020
When Jeremy Corbyn compared Israel to ISIS, @KenRoth defended him.
Today, Corbyn was suspended by his own Labor Party for antisemitism.
Ken Roth still heads Human Rights Watch. https://t.co/9CTdi1wxPS
— Hillel Neuer (@HillelNeuer) October 29, 2020
A far-left organization that counts three members of the US Congress among its supporters has issued a statement of solidarity with Jeremy Corbyn — the former British Labour leader who was dramatically suspended from the party on Thursday, following the publication of an official report into antisemitism within its ranks.
“Solidarity with Jeremy Corbyn,” the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) tweeted. “Thank you for always being a champion of the international working class.”
Solidarity with @JeremyCorbyn. Thank you for always being a champion for the international working class.
— DSA 🌹 (@DemSocialists) October 29, 2020
DSA’s high-profile supporters include Reps. Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) and Rashida Tlaib (D-MI). The organization’s platform is bitterly hostile toward Israel and Zionism, promoting the BDS campaign against the Jewish state.
In August, DSA activists provoked fury among members of the New York State Assembly for issuing what was denounced as a “blatantly antisemitic litmus test” to prospective New York City Council candidates.
The DSA’s questionnaire to candidates included the line, “Do you pledge not to travel to Israel if elected to City Council in solidarity with Palestinians living under occupation?”
Ocasio-Cortez — a leading figure in the Democratic Party’s progressive wing — has expressed deep admiration for Corbyn in the past.
After the two spoke by phone in February 2019, Ocasio-Cortez described their exchange in glowing terms.
Corbyn was resoundingly defeated in the British general election last December, after which he resigned as Labour leader.
It was an honor to share such a lovely and wide-reaching conversation with you, @jeremycorbyn!
Also honored to share a great hope in the peace, prosperity, + justice that everyday people can create when we uplift one another across class, race, + identity both at home & abroad. https://t.co/7qnz42I8du
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) February 3, 2019
We now have it in writing: Jeremy Corbyn is an anti-Semite.
An investigation by the United Kingdom’s Equality and Human Rights Commission released Thursday found that the British Labour Party, under the leadership of Corbyn, broke the law in its systematic discrimination against Jews.
Created by a 2006 law intended to protect citizens of the United Kingdom from all forms of discrimination, the commission concluded that Corbyn’s high command interfered to suppress complaints about anti-Semitism inside the party and conspired to exonerate members fairly accused of anti-Semitic conduct.
The report lays responsibility squarely at Corbyn’s feet, citing “serious failings in leadership” that created “a culture within the party which, at best, did not do enough to prevent antisemitism and, at worst, could be seen to accept it.”
Those findings are unsurprising, given the explosion of Jew hatred on the British left following Corbyn’s takeover in the fall of 2015. As a backbencher in Parliament, Corbyn referred to Hamas and Hezbollah as “friends,” invited the radical Islamic cleric and Hamas funder Raed Saleh—now behind bars for inciting terrorism—to Parliament, and laid a wreath at the grave of Palestinian terrorists who massacred Israelis at the 1972 Munich Olympics.
None of this stopped prominent American left-wingers from championing a man whose indulgence of hatred was obvious to Jews long before it was deemed a violation of law. These same figures never hesitate to blather about their own “lived experience,” or to lecture that society must defer to the perceived oppression of any marginalized or minority group—any, that is, except for the Jews, who are not allowed to decide for themselves what constitutes overt and obvious anti-Semitism.
Take Squad darling Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D., N.Y.), who boycotted an event honoring the martyred Yitzhak Rabin but slobbered over Corbyn (“an honor to share such a lovely and wide-reaching conversation”) on Twitter; Democratic Rep. Pramila Jayapal (Wash.), who lauded Corbyn’s political achievements as a victory over “inequality”; Rep. Ro Khanna (Calif.), who praised Corbyn’s “bold vision” and “positive populism”; and, of course, the political godfather of these lawmakers, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.), whom Corbyn has described as his political inspiration.
I wrote to Corbyn’s office directly asking him to explain why he described the convicted terrorist who authorised the attack that killed my 16-year-old cousin as his “brother” and sat on a panel with him at an “electrifying and fascinating” Hamas conference. He never replied. https://t.co/OdJDeJ3EUT
— Adam Ma’anit (@adammaanit) October 29, 2020
Democrat vice presidential candidate Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) made an unannounced stop in Metro Detroit, Michigan, last weekend and followed up with an interview with Dearborn-based Arab American News published Wednesday, where she shared her support for reinstating aid to Palestinians in Israel, and for reoopening the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) mission office in Washington, DC, and the U.S. consulate in Jerusalem.
Harris said of herself and Democrat presidential candidate former vice president Joe Biden:
Joe and I also believe in the worth and value of every Palestinian and every Israeli and we will work to ensure that Palestinians and Israelis enjoy equal measures of freedom, security, prosperity and democracy. We are committed to a two-state solution, and we will oppose any unilateral steps that undermine that goal. We will also oppose annexation and settlement expansion.
“And we will take immediate steps to restore economic and humanitarian assistance to the Palestinian people, address the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Gaza, reopen the U.S. consulate in East Jerusalem, and work to reopen the PLO mission in Washington,” Harris said.
As Breitbart News reported, both Harris and Biden are wrong about the U.S. consulate being in Eastern Jerusalem:
The U.S. consulate in “East Jerusalem” was not even in “East Jerusalem,” but in the Western part of the city, near downtown, on the Israeli side of the 1949 armistice line (also known as the 1967 border). Its old functions still exist, and are handled by the U.S. embassy — of which the old consulate building is now an annex.
And neither Harris nor Biden have asked for anything in return for restoring aid to the Palestinians, as also noted in the same Breitbart News report:
Imagine telling a Palestinian ‘You’re a sellout for meeting the Israeli who offered Arafat a state at Camp David.’ Western leftists may not want peace but a great many Palestinians do, and they should not stand in their way.
— Seth Mandel (@SethAMandel) October 30, 2020
The student government at Pace University in New York City adopted the widely accepted International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of antisemitism on Wednesday.
The resolution, obtained by JNS, was introduced by Eden Litvin, a student at the school and president of its chapter of Students Supporting Israel (SSI), and co-signed by SSI, the university’s Hillel and the Israeli-American Council Mishelanu campus network.
It states that the student government “was created as a forum for students to voice their opinions on issues presented” by the administration, faculty and student body. Moreover, Pace University “aims to create and sustain a living-learning community that embraces diversity in all its forms, challenges habits and assumptions underlying the structures of power, privilege and injustice, and works to ensure that we are inclusive, welcoming and empowering to all our members.”
The resolution goes on to say that “Jewish students constitute an important part of the broader Pace University community, yet remain distinguishable from the majority by common ethnic, religious and cultural characteristics,” and that the university’s Jewish community is “a distinct and significant cultural community within the university, which Pace University is charter-bound to support, protect and defend.”
The resolution also mentions the spike in antisemitic incidents in recent years across the country, listing instances including, but not limited to, the 2018 Tree of Life*Or L’Simcha shooting in Pittsburgh, the 2019 Chabad of Poway shooting in Southern California, the 2019 shooting at a kosher supermarket in Jersey City, a Star of David drawn on a Pace University building in feces in 2019 and the recent string of attacks against Jews in Brooklyn, NY.
Additionally, it notes that Jews and Jewish institutions are the most targeted for religious-based hate crimes in the United States.
In its ongoing campaign against the Jewish State of Israel, Foodbenders shared this post to its Instagram account today claiming that “all of Israel is a settlement.”
This claim is incitement and implies that all land is tenuous and that Israel has no right to exist. This is pure antisemitism.
The prospect of the Florida high school principal at the center of a Holocaust denial scandal returning to the state’s education system is “very scary,” a Jewish student at the school where he served has told The Algemeiner.
The principal, William Latson, was fired from Spanish River High School in Palm Beach County last November after sending an email to a parent who inquired about Holocaust education programs that stated, “not everyone believes the Holocaust happened.”
In the same email, Latson told the parent that when it came to the subject of the Nazi murder of six million Jews and millions of other people from minorities including Roma gypsies and the disabled, “you have your thoughts, but we are a public school, and not all of our parents have the same beliefs.”
He concluded: “I can’t say the Holocaust is a factual, historical event because I am not in a position to do so as a school-district employee.”
Following a year-long appeal process, however, the Palm Beach County School Board voted at its Oct. 7 meeting to rehire Latson by a narrow margin of 4-3. Latson’s appeal had received an earlier boost in August when the judge at his appeal, Robert Cohen, ruled that his offense was not serious enough to warrant termination.
On Monday, Latson’s case will be debated once again at the school board’s regular monthly meeting. For one Jewish student at Spanish River — who spoke to The Algemeiner on condition of anonymity — his potential reappearance in the education system amounts to a “very scary” proposition.
“There are lots more students who feel the way I do, there are many Jewish students at the school as well, but they are scared to say so,” said the 10th-grade student, during a phone conversation on Wednesday.
On October 25, Toronto Star Columnist Shree Paradkar claimed that a chill has descended on Canadian university campuses when it comes to the Arab-Israeli conflict. As evidence, she cites two recent cases of academics being criticized for their views of Israel which she describes as being “moderate”.
While Ms. Paradkar, the Star’s “Race and Gender Columnist,” is entitled to her views, sadly, she misses the forest for the trees in her analysis of what’s happening on campuses across Canada.
Firstly, it’s important to draw a distinction between what Ms. Paradkar terms a “moderate critique” of Israel and what went beyond legitimate criticism of Israel and which verged into borderline hate speech. York University professor Faisal Bhabha, who complains that his university has not publicly defended him against a campaign to have him fired, publicly equated Zionism with “Jewish supremacy.” That is, of course, a grotesque lie. Zionism is the Jewish people’s strive for self-determination in their historic homeland, and when Professor Bhabha misrepresents it as repugnant and akin to white supremacy, he not only tarnishes the vast majority of Canadian Jews, he also applies a bizarre double standard: Palestinian self-determination is acceptable, but Jewish self-determination is racism. This isn’t “moderate” criticism, and his saying it was possible that Israel is “exaggerating the Holocaust” is textbook antisemitism.
As to Dr. Valentina Azarova, she’s not merely a “critic” of Israel as she supports and advocates for the “one-state solution” which is a thinly veiled strategy for destroying the State of Israel and questioning its very right to exist. At its most basic level, the one-state solution denies the right of Jews to self-determination in their historical homeland and calls into question the very legitimacy of Israel as a state. A bi-national state would have the same consequence as the “right of return” – the negation of Israel as a Jewish state. Palestinians, by virtue of a higher birthrate, would turn Jews into a minority before voting in favor of another Muslim Arab state in place of Israel.
This is precisely why the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance Definition of Antisemitism is critically important. When individuals deny the inherent right of the Jewish people’s self-determination and call for Israel’s destruction, that is itself antisemitic. Anyone is entitled to their own beliefs, but spreading dangerous lies about Israel and the Jewish people is certainly not a “moderate critique.”
.@swarthmore graduate, SJP activist and aspiring PhD Taylor Morgan believes “Israel is a white supremacist project/apartheid state following the genocidal legacy of the USA.”https://t.co/QwKcrrHUzI pic.twitter.com/Or97HO6zYZ
— Canary Mission (@canarymission) October 29, 2020
When there are two wildly different versions of a story, and in the absence of conclusive evidence of either version being proven objectively correct, a responsible journalist should always strive to ensure that readers are presented with each narrative, along with additional relevant information, in a fair and equal fashion.
But the reporting of the recent death of a Palestinian youth in unclear circumstances in the West Bank this week by leading British newspaper The Daily Telegraph leaves much to be desired.
Two Contradicting VersionsAs the Times of Israel reported, there were two versions of the story: According to the IDF, 18-year old Amer Snobar fatally injured himself while running away after throwing rocks at Israeli vehicles. But according to the Palestinians, troops allegedly shot and beat him to death while he was driving.
It’s clear that only one of these versions of the story can be true. And in the absence of certainty, journalists owe it to the readers to make clear that the circumstances behind the man’s death were unclear. They should also include information that would seem to strengthen or contradict either of the side’s stories
For example, the Times of Israel report mentioned that no damage from gunfire could be clearly seen on the car – highly relevant when considering the claim that Israeli troops were supposed to have shot the man while he was in the car.
The Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court has ruled in favor of Jerusalem Post reporter Khaled Abu Toameh in his defamation case against Ted Belman, the editor of IsraPundit, a news blog website.
The decision was made earlier this week.
Abu Toameh said he was gratified that Belman would need to retract comments he had written about him.
Belman’s posts on his website and Facebook page relating to “Jordan is Palestine” in which he mentioned Abu Toameh had no factual basis, and he apologized for them, the court said in its ruling.
Furthermore, Belman must post his declaration and apology on his website and send it to his mailing list within 14 days of the ruling, the court said.
Should Belman republish similar baseless charges in the future against Abu Toameh, he can be fined NIS 5,000 for each new post, it said.
The court rejected Belman’s counterclaim against Abu Toameh, who voluntarily agreed to express regret for one negative reference to Belman in response to Belman’s years of defamatory posts.
Mudar Zahran’s campaign against Abu Toameh began in 2013 and continued until 2017, when Abu Toameh sued.
The Global Imams Council (GIC) adopted the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) Working Definition of Antisemitism on Thursday, becoming the first Imams Council in the world to do so. This was just a few days after Albania became the first Muslim-majority country to adopt the definition.
The GIC is the world’s first and largest international non-governmental body of Muslim religious leaders from all Islamic denominations and schools of thought, with a rapidly growing number of over 1000 members worldwide, according to its website.
In a historic move, the GIC’s Governing Board Senior Imams Committee and Advisory Committee passed on Monday a unanimous vote to adopt the IHRA Working Definition of Antisemitism.
“We live in a time of rising antisemitism and terrorist attacks, which makes our responsibility as faith leaders greater, and even greater as Imams,” GIC’s members stated, adding that they are “the first Imams Council in history to invite a rabbi to become a permanent member of its Interfaith board.”
The IHRA definition adopted is as follows: “Antisemitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.” The adoption of the IHRA definition, that took effect on Thursday, will be binding on all current and future members of the GIC, including all affiliate mosques, centers, institutes and organizations operated by the Imams of this council worldwide.
A Dutch human resources firm has determined that a Palestinian man who twice vandalized a kosher restaurant and tried to set it ablaze had terrorist motives.
The NTA firm on Wednesday determined that Saleh Ali, an asylum seeker from Syria, indeed had terrorist motives when he smashed the windows of the HaCarmel restaurant in Amsterdam in 2017 and again in May 2020 while holding a lighter, Het Parool reported. NTA was hired by the Dutch government to determine Saleh’s motives in the attack and prosecutors have accepted the firm’s conclusion, Telegraaf reported.
Ali, 32, has not been convicted of a hate crime and served 52 days in jail for vandalism for the first attack, which he said he committed to avenge the moving of the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. NTA was hired to determine his motives in the second attack, for which he now awaits trial.
A former jihadist fighter in Syria, Ali remains at a psychiatric observation center, where he threatened a fellow resident who is Jewish with a billiard ball, the Het Parool report said.
News of the NTA findings provoked ridicule on social media.
“So this wasn’t a case of an unsatisfied patron who didn’t like the gefilte fish,” the opera critic Olivier Keegel wrote on Facebook.
Email email@example.com and demand these disgusting item are promptly removed. pic.twitter.com/sTY281IOFw
— StopAntisemitism.org (@StopAntisemites) October 29, 2020
The city government of Riga, Latvia, waived its demand for rent from a Holocaust museum whose director said it couldn’t afford to pay.
The Riga City Council on Monday withdrew its intention to collect $12,000 in rent per month from the Riga Ghetto Museum, one of the Latvian capital’s three Holocaust museums, Rabbi Menachem Barkahan, who heads the Shamir Association that runs the museum, told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency.
The city also revised its plan to rezone most of the area it had leased to the museum for 10 years, agreeing to take away only half of its allocated 6,500 square feet. “This will allow the museum to keep its main exhibition, Ghetto Street, as is,” the Shamir Association said in a statement Tuesday.
The museum’s previous 10-year lease, which expired this year, did not charge any rent.
Shamir “welcomed the decision, and thanked the council for choosing to maintain the agreement,” the statement read.
The Nazis and their collaborators murdered about 70,000 Jews in Latvia during the Holocaust. The Riga Ghetto refers to areas of the city where Jews were forced to live during the Holocaust.
2020 Antisemite of the Year Contest 👉🏻 Voting is NOW OPEN! 🗳
10 semi-finalists 👉🏻 YOU chose your top 3 Jew haters through Nov. 23rd
We’ll announce the 3 finalists Nov. 30th
Ultimate winner declared on Dec. 21st
— StopAntisemitism.org (@StopAntisemites) October 30, 2020
India is regularly ranked among Israel’s top-10 trade partners, but that doesn’t mean doing business with companies from the sub-continent is straightforward. One of the major issues frustrating many Israeli companies, often to the extent that deals fall through as a consequence, is the time it takes to do business in India. The local business culture is nowhere near as fast as that Israelis are used to, and those gaps can sometimes end up becoming insurmountable obstacles. However, the Covid-19 pandemic may be helping to change that. The fact that for several months meetings are no longer being held in person and have moved online has not only saved travel costs for companies, but has also made the entire process more effective, and in many cases in India, also significantly shortened the time of doing business.
Natasha Zangin, the head of the Economic and Commercial Mission at the Embassy of Israel to New Delhi, is experiencing this first hand and believes it could be a positive consequence of the coronavirus crisis.
“The challenge presented by Covid-19, it has also brought with it many opportunities. One of the most significant opportunities, in my opinion, is the shortening of the time it takes to do business here,” Zangin told CTech. “If in the past companies had to travel here to physically hold meetings, today they can be done over Zoom. The Indian companies have adopted the digital platforms and it is quite easy to set up introductory meetings. The Indian market is hungry for innovation and they view Israel as a hub for innovation and want to learn more about these technologies and the way in which they can integrate them. They are open to meeting online and this has resulted in more meetings than in the past.”
Zangin began her role in Delhi only last month after several years working for the Ministry of Economy and Industry’s Foreign Trade Administration, including in the Trade in Services and Investments department.
Israeli scientists who specialize in cleaning algae from large bodies of water were called in to save an estuary in Florida last week from an ecological disaster due to the spread of toxic blue-green algae.
The company, BlueGreen Water Technologies, was given a $945,000 state contract to keep the toxic algae in Lake Okeechobee from getting into the St. Lucie River estuary.
The algae spread in the waters of Lake Okeechobee and from there to the canals and rivers around it. Blue-Green algae create enormous damage to the local agriculture, fisheries, tourism, economy and infrastructure, in addition to being toxic in humans and animals due to bacteria that develop on top of the algae secreting toxins.
The Israeli team from the BlueGreen company have developed a unique technological solution called Lake Guard. From a raft that floats on the water, the technology disperses measured amounts of a green substance named Lake Guard Oxy, a hydrogen-peroxide based algicide which eliminates the algae and bacterial colonies on them, while preserving the surrounding vegetation, fish and animals.
The affected bacteria transmit chemical distress signals that are absorbed by additional groups of bacteria in the lake and cause them to collapse in a chain reaction.
Israel: 30% of Energy to be From Renewables by 2030
The first mass deportation of Jews took place in late October 1938 – Jews with Polish citizenship were evicted from Germany & placed in the Polish border town of Zbaszyn
This deportation took place BEFORE the Kristallnacht pogrom
— Yad Vashem (@yadvashem) October 30, 2020
We have lots of ideas, but we need more resources to be even more effective. Please donate today to help get the message out and to help defend Israel.