Anti-Semitism returns to gain mainstream traction
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The rise, or rise again, of anti-Semitism is by no means confined to Britain. Australian academic Peter Kurti warns rising anti-Semitism in Britain, US and Europe risks becoming “commonplace” here too.
In a policy paper for the conservative-leaning Centre for Independent Studies, Kurti attributes the phenomenon to a particular racist mindset among adherents of the postmodern political left. “Increasingly the left has become obsessed with anti-Zionism, which can be a mask for anti-Semitism,” he writes.
Corbyn might be regarded as the model. But Kurti says the state of Israel and Jewish people more widely have become the standard target in Australia as well for leftists in what he brands a “toxic mutation of an ancient hatred”. He argues the left’s unrelenting support for the Palestinian cause, including seemingly unqualified demands for the creation of a Palestinian state, treats Israel as a remnant of Western colonialism to the point of rejecting its legitimacy as a state.
Kurti cites a rise in anti-Semitic incidents in Australia (366 last year or a 59 per cent increase across the previous 12 months as recorded by the Executive Council of Australian Jewry). He concurs with the ECAJ’s conclusions that these incidents stem from “left-wing rhetoric exaggerating the power of the so-called Jewish lobby”. The effect has been to “stoke far-right myths about a world Jewish conspiracy or of Jews controlling the media, economy, government or other societal institutions”.
Anti-Semitism is rising again as the left vents against Israel.https://t.co/MNgS5fJyg3
— The Australian (@australian) November 16, 2019
The Sanders–Warren–Buttigieg trio display either hostility or ignorance, or possibly both, when they assert that US policy supports creating a Palestinian Arab state. To the contrary, the Trump administration, while not ruling it out, has explicitly not adopted this position — and it is the executive branch that sets foreign policy.
It is additionally deeply hypocritical that Senators Sanders and Warren have called for cutting aid to Israel over an issue of policy when, in September this year, both senators opposed President Trump’s cuts in aid to Mahmoud Abbas’ Palestinian Authority (PA) and the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees (UNRWA).
The PA has refused negotiations for nearly a decade and insists it will never return to them, refused to dismantle terrorist groups, refused to end the incitement to hatred and murder that suffuses the PA-controlled media, mosques, schools and youth camps, and has refused to stop paying salaries to blood-soaked, jailed terrorists and stipends to the families of deceased terrorists who murdered Jews. (These payments totaled $318 million in 2016).
The PA, moreover, has made the astonishing declaration that it regards US aid as a “political and moral right” on account of US support for Israel’s establishment in 1948. These policies adhered to by the PA diverge massively from the US position — unless Sanders-Warren-Buttigieg mean to changer that too. Yet none of these positions attracts even the suggestion from these Democrats that the PA deserves no or less US aid.
These new, diametrically-opposed positions will not long coexist in the same party. The Democratic Party is fast reaching the point where it must either succumb to the new radical leftist positions on Israel espoused by Sanders-Warren-Buttigieg (not to mention ‘The Squad’) or reassert its traditional, liberal support for the Jewish state.
It remains only to note that blaming the Jewish state for every species of injustice is a feature of the campus anti-Israel movement, not an anomaly. At the City University of New York in 2015, multiple Students for Justice in Palestine chapters signed a statement against CUNY’s “Zionist administration.” The topics? High tuition and low wages for campus workers. Jewish Voice for Peace has since 2017 been running a “Deadly Exchange” campaign, the core of which is that Israel is responsible for police violence against blacks in America. The strategy is clear enough: if you blame the Jews—sorry, “Zionism”—for everyone’s ills, you can draw more allies into your movement.
Anti-Semitism, you see, is a potent political strategy. It’s even more potent when student governments ignore Jewish students and condemn, as the student Senate at the University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign did recently, the “equation of anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism.” Four hundred Jewish students, including the lone Jew in the Senate, walked out.
Once, certain student governments were satisfied to make pronouncements about the Middle East without educating themselves about it. Now they have graduated to lecturing and condemning Jews who complain about anti-Semitism without educating themselves about anti-Semitism.
Kudos to Mr. Flayton for stepping forward and to the New York Times for publishing him. No doubt, some adherents of the campus left are beyond shame. But in my experience, even professed anti-Zionists are more thoughtful and persuadable than their public pronouncements suggest. They genuinely believe, perhaps because they rub elbows mainly with the 5 percent of Jews who do not have a favorable view of Israel, that the people who charge them with anti-Semitism are disingenuous.
They haven’t thought it through, but they’re not beyond help.
Israel’s contemporary critics angrily in-sist that the special relationship between America and the Jewish state stems solely from the outsize electoral and economic clout of American Jews. But those who argue that this undue influence has always shaped our policies in the Middle East ignore the fact that the commitment to a rebuilt Jerusalem and a reborn Israel began at a time when the republic’s Jewish community played an insignificant role in national life, with a minimal population amounting to far less than 1 percent of the federal total. In fact, the idea that the United States ought to link its fate to a Jewish state officially originated in 1844 with the very first diplomat America ever dispatched to Jerusalem, more than a century before Israel’s Declaration of Independence. His name was Warder Cresson, and he led an extraordinary and singular American life.
Cresson’s own Huguenot forebears first came to the New World from Holland in 1657, settling in Delaware and New York. After some adventures in the West Indies, his grandfather Solomon found his way to Philadelphia, where he became an ardent member of the Society of Friends and part of the new city’s Quaker establishment. As successful artisans and entrepreneurs, the Cressons owned prime real estate on Chestnut Street in the center of town as well as valuable agricultural properties in the surrounding countryside.
Born in 1798, Cresson began working the family farms in nearby Darby and Chester counties at age 17, impressing relatives and neighbors with his business and leadership abilities. Married at 23 to another devout Quaker, he proceeded to raise six children of his own and to follow the clan’s pattern of judicious investment and accumulation of wealth.
As he approached 30, however, religious doubts began to torment him, and he published outspokenly radical religious tracts (including Babylon the Great Is Falling!) that questioned his Quaker faith, challenging its perceived emphasis on “an outward form, order of discipline” without proper attention to the “inward man.” Cresson formally rejected the Society of Friends and affiliated himself with a series of unconventional sects that had arisen during America’s second “Great Awakening,” including, in turn, the Shakers, the Mormons, the Seventh-day Adventists, and the “Camp-bellites,” who believed in restoring the united, purified Christianity of the apostles.
One is left wondering how on earth thousands of Muslim residents of Tehran at the time could have been whipped up into an angry frenzy to the point where they were seeking to slaughter the Jews of the city over an insult to the mullah’s donkey? Interestingly, in his book, Levy, who was a Jewish officer in the Iranian military at the time indicates he witnessed the rioters in Tehran’s behavior and asked one of them the reason for their rage against the Jews. The rioter told Levy that the “Jews had killed two of the mullah’s children” and they wanted vengeance for those killings! It is no doubt sad that simple minded people at that time were so easily manipulated by an Iranian cleric to do harm to the Jews of Tehran based on his lies about them and because of his sole desire to punish them.
For his part, Kornfeld completed his four years of duty as the American Ambassador and prior to returning to the U.S., he was honored by Tehran’s Jewish community with two silver tablets of the ten commandments as a gift to show their appreciation to him for saving their lives. Aside from the incident with the mullah’s donkey, Kornfeld had help prevent other attacks on Iran’s Jews as well. On a side note, Kornfeld was indeed an ordained rabbi who worked in synagogues in Arkansas, Ohio and Montreal. He had originally emigrated to the U.S. from Austria when was a child. In 1921, after having helped the political campaign of Warren G. Harding, the rabbi was appointed by President Harding as Ambassador to Persia.
As Iranian Jews living in America today, we are no doubt grateful for our American Jewish brethren helping his resettle in the U.S. after fleeing Iran following the 1979 revolution. However those of us with roots in Tehran (myself included) are also eternally grateful for the kindness of Kornfeld in 1922 for saving our ancestors lives. At that time when no Jewish state existed on the planet that could possibly protect world Jewry, the only thing Jews in Iran, Europe, or America could do was rely on one another for help and protection in times of tremendous difficulty. Even today when a State of Israel does exist, we Jews must stay vigilant to threat of anti-Semitism that is growing in America, Europe and worldwide.
In today’s impassioned political wars over the politics of racial hatred, it is no surprise that words and images from the Nazi period are regularly invoked. Hitler analogies have long been with us but they are now especially popular, with President Trump’s face often photoshopped alongside the Nazi Fuehrer’s. While we are not yet witnessing anything as widespread as the “swastika epidemic” of 1959-60, which saw the proliferation of thousands of swastikas in more than 30 countries, the Nazi symbol is making a comeback with a proliferation of swastikas defacing synagogues, Jewish homes, and cemeteries in the U.S. Swastikas were on proud display at the infamous 2017 rally in Charlottesville where far-right marchers chanted “Jews will not replace us.” But such imagery is not confined to white nationalist circles, it has appeared as well among high school students who, perhaps ignorant of the history of Nazi atrocities, fool around with Nazi symbolism.
The backdrop for this revival of Nazi symbolism is the global resurgence of anti-Semitism, including in the United States. This resurgence, less than a century after the end of WWII, calls into question the long and widely held assumption that popular knowledge of the Holocaust—what we have come to call Holocaust education—would inhibit the return of anti-Semitic passions in the public sphere. But, to work, this assumption in turn requires that Holocaust education is substantive and effective, amounting to more than the mere instrumentalization of historical tragedy. Here the conclusion is stark: Though the debate over matters related to racism, anti-Semitism, and the nature and legacy of fascism may be impassioned, there evidently has been a major, ongoing failure in transmitting meaningful and lasting knowledge about the Holocaust to a great many Americans.
To grasp the extent of this failure and its consequences, the questions we must ask are: What does this generation of Americans know about the Holocaust? How much do they care about it? And what are the connections between the incipient mainstreaming of today’s anti-Semitism and the weakening or fading of Holocaust memory?
These are not new questions, but they came to my attention in a new and unexpected way during a recent visit to Berlin. I was in the city in June to participate in a conference titled “A Transatlantic Wave of Anti-Semitism? Jew-Hatred in Europe and the United States” (more about this conference later). What provoked the questions about Holocaust memory, however, was not anything I encountered in Germany but, rather, news that reached me there about a contentious debate back home about “concentration camps” on our country’s southern border.
Reference to such camps was made by New York congressional Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (hereafter AOC), who also spoke of American “fascism” and invoked “never again,” invariably calling to mind the Nazi camps. She used this language in a highly charged denunciation of President Trump’s immigration policies. Her words triggered a highly charged debate that played out across mainstream and social media and became the national issue for many days in June. Like much else in today’s emotionally and politically overwrought times, it was intense, divisive, and yielded just about nothing of any lasting value. Besides spurring predictable clashes by Democratic supporters and Republican opponents of AOC, the debate also involved an unusual public dispute between the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and a group of over 400 Holocaust scholars. Shortly after AOC’s comments, the museum released an official statement “unequivocally rejecting efforts to create analogies between the Holocaust and other events, whether historical or contemporary.” This prompted the group of scholars to issue a public statement of their own rebuking the museum for its “fundamentally ahistorical” position and appealing for it to be rescinded. The museum has neither withdrawn its original statement nor replied directly to these scholars, but on July 18 it issued a clarification of its mission and work.
When Adolf Hitler came to power in Germany on Jan. 30, 1933, he gained the authority to implement his racist ideology toward Germany’s Jews, who then numbered 535,000 out of a general population of 67 million. After the Reichstag (parliament) elections on March 5, the new German government removed the constraints on violence against Jews, and assaults and vicious beatings of Jews in the streets of major German cities by Nazi thugs became commonplace. Within months, the Nazi government issued numerous decrees and regulations that effectively removed Jews from German economic life and the professions, the goal being to force the Jews to leave Germany.
German Jews reacted to these developments with shock and disbelief. Diaries and memoirs record their distress and utter bewilderment. Another primary source is the private letters that German Jews sent to relatives living abroad. These letters express the reactions and emotions of men and women to the horrifying events unfolding around them daily. One rarely used such resource is the letters written by German B’nai B’rith (Sons of the Covenant) members to relatives in the United States. Many of these letters were forwarded to B’nai B’rith’s international headquarters in Cincinnati, where they remain part of the organization’s archives.
Jewish men established the German B’nai B’rith in Berlin 1882 to combat a rising tide of anti-Semitism among the populace and in fraternal organizations. From 1882 onward, most German B’nai B’rith members belonged to business, industry, and the legal and medical professions. In general, B’nai B’rith members represented the most influential element within European Jewish society, and many of the leading personalities in Jewish life were members. At the time of the Berlin lodge’s founding, the largest and wealthiest German Jewish elite lived in Berlin and occupied an important position in the city’s cultural and intellectual life. By 1925, Germany contained 107 B’nai B’rith lodges with over 15,000 members.
While all German Jews reacted to these events with alarm and incredulity, the elite of the community experienced an especially deep dismay, having assumed that their economic and social position and contributions to German life and culture would shield them from danger. B’nai B’rith members came from this class, and many of them wrote personal and emotional letters describing the nightmare they found themselves in to family members living in the United States. The letters movingly express the consternation and terror the writers felt as the world they knew collapsed.
A letter written in April 1933 by an elderly physician to his daughter living in the United States expresses the author’s anguish, disillusionment, and anger at what has befallen him and those in his profession.
Israeli drivers who narrowly escaped when a rocket fired from Gaza slammed into a road and exploded meters from them on Tuesday gathered to reflect on their narrow escape in interviews broadcast Friday.
The dramatic incident was captured on video and circulated widely on Israeli media. The projectile, one of 450 fired by Gaza terrorists at Israel on Tuesday and Wednesday, blew up in the middle of Route 4 at 9:30 a.m. near Gan Yavne in southern Israel, narrowly missing several vehicles.
The drivers of cars surrounding the impact received only light injuries, while the signs and guard rails around the intersection still bear damage from the rocket’s shrapnel.
There were no warning sirens ahead of the explosion.
Several of the drivers who were on the scene recounted the episode to Channel 13 news.
Mali Hason said she was driving with her dog, Ice, to a shelter for abused women where she volunteers. Her mother had warned her against driving under the threat of rockets but she insisted on going anyway, she said.
“The whole way I was planning. ‘If it happens now, I’ll stop here.’ I was planning ahead of time what I would need to do if something happened. I drove through the intersection and I said ‘Great, wonderful, I did it,’” Hason said.
Israel struck Hamas targets after two rockets were launched towards the southern Israeli city of Beersheba early on Saturday morning, another violation of a ceasefire agreed to after two days of heavy fighting between Palestinian Islamic Jihad and the IDF.
Incoming rocket sirens were activated in Beersheba,, Segev Shalom, Lakiya, Omer and Bedouin areas around 2am with both rockets were intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defense system.
Magen David Adom paramedics provided medical attention to nine people, all of them in mild condition, including five for shock and four who fell on their way to bomb shelters.
In retaliation the Israeli military said it struck a military camp, a compound for the group’s naval forces and underground terror infrastructure. Palestinian Wafa News Agency said the strike was carried out by 10 missiles fired at targets northwest of Gaza City and Beit Lahiya.
“The Hamas terror organization is responsible for everything in the Gaza Strip and will bear the consequences of terror acts carried out against Israeli citizens,” the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit said in a statement.
Palestinian Pallywood creators know they’ve the most gullible audience. They say anything with any image & it gets 1000s of shares. This 2016 Syrian image was just passed off as Gaza.
This the fault of the left who dropped all standards & swallow anything that demonises Israel pic.twitter.com/rfIFA2xE58
— David Collier (@mishtal) November 15, 2019
Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) supporters on Friday expelled senior Hamas official Mahmoud Zahar from the home of the family of slain PIJ commander Bahaa Abu al-Ata in the Shajaiyeh neighborhood of Gaza City.
The incident occurred when Zahar arrived to offer condolences to the family over the death of al-Ata, who was assassinated last week by Israel.
Scores of PIJ supporters rioted and blocked the cars of Zahar and his bodyguards, forcing them to flee the area, Palestinian sources said. The protesters chanted slogans against Hamas for failing to launch rockets at Israel in retaliation for the killing of al-Ata.
🔴الاعتداء على مرافقي القيادي في ح ما س، محمود الزهار اثناء تقديم واجب العزاء لعائلة القيادي بهاء ابو العطا في حي الشجاعية، ورفض استقبال القيادي الزهار من القائمين على العزاء والهتاف ضده وضد ح م اس. pic.twitter.com/aVJ7WE3fEw
— حراس الاقصى (@mPwEwi8iMvnueWw) November 15, 2019
The incident is a sign of mounting tensions between Hamas and PIJ after last week’s round of fighting with Israel. PIJ and Hamas officials have denied that relations between the two parties have been strained as a result of Hamas’s inaction. They accused Israel of seeking to drive a wedge between the two groups by “praising” Hamas for its failure to join the PIJ in the fighting with Israel
The sources said that PIJ supporters threw stones at Zahar’s car when he arrived at the home of al-Ata’s family and chanted: “Hamas go away, go away!”
Zahar’s bodyguards responded by firing into the air before whisking him away, the sources added. No one was hurt.
MEMRI: Iranian TV Overviews Iran’s Missile Capabilities: We Have Provided A Large Quantity Of Our Most Precise Missiles To Hizbullah In Lebanon; They Can Strike Israel’s Southernmost Regions; We Have Missiles Meant To Strike U.S. Bases
On November 12, 2019, IRINN TV (Iran) aired an animation called “The Rise of the Missiles,” overviewing Iran’s missile capabilities. The overview included the Fateh-110 missile, which the narrator said is Iran’s most accurate missile. He said that large quantities of Fateh-110 missiles have been given to Hizbullah forces in Lebanon, from which Israel’s southernmost regions can be targeted. The overview also included Ghiam, a long-range missile meant to destroy America’s military bases in the Middle East, and the Fajr-3 and Fajr-5 rockets, which have been used by Palestinian organizations to target Israeli cities.
The Sejjil Missile “Will Destroy Its Targets In The Occupied Lands [Israel] In Less Than Seven Minutes”
Narrator: “In 2006, Sejjil, the 23-ton Iranian giant – with its 650kg warhead and 2,000-kilometer range – began to roar. Since this missile uses solid fuel, it can be ready for launch within minutes. After launching [the missile], the launcher [can] leave the place quickly. This capability minimizes the possibility of pre-launch destruction.
“In addition, the Sejjil’s very high velocity – about 4,300 meters per second – makes it effectively impossible for the enemy to intercept it. It will destroy its targets in the occupied lands in less than seven minutes.
“This is the Fateh-110 short-range missile. Range: 300 kilometers. Fuel: Solid. Warhead: 500 kilograms. Fateh-110 was tested in 2007, and since it is the most accurate Iranian missile, large quantities of it have been provided to the resistance forces of Hizbullah. From Lebanon, even the southernmost parts of the occupied land are within its range. In addition, with the supply of the Khalij Fars missile – the naval version of the Fateh-Class missile – all the warships of the Zionist regime will face this crushing and dangerous threat. The Zionist regime’s Sa’ar ship was decimated by weaker cruise missiles in the Mediterranean Sea during the 33-Day War [Second Lebanon War].”
It is a similar picture with regard to the Labour leader’s global vision. At the heart of his hard Left approach to foreign policy lies a deep hatred for the US and its role in safeguarding the interests of the Western democracies. Thus Mr Corbyn’s instinct is to be more sympathetic to the views of Russia, Iran, North Korea and the Assad regime in Syria than Britain’s long-standing allies in Washington and Europe.
Mr Corbyn’s high regard for the ayatollahs even resulted in his undertaking the controversial role of being a contributor for Press TV, the Iranian-run propaganda channel, where he was paid the equivalent of around $30,000 until the channel was banned by British regulators for its part in filming the detention and torture of an Iranian journalist. MoreoverMr Corbyn has never apologised for his association with the broadcaster, and claiming his appearances over three years allowed him to raise “a number of important human rights issues”.
Another example of Mr Corbyn’s pro-Iranian bias can be seen in his frequent public association with members of Hezbollah. In a speech made to the British-based Stop the War Coalition, he called members of Hezbollah and Hamas “friends”. Consequently there can be little doubt that, in the disastrous event that he becomes Britain’s next prime minister, he would insist that Britain pursue a far more sympathetic approach to Tehran.
Another area of concern for Britain’s allies would be Mr Corbyn’s close association with other Islamist groups such as the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas. Mr Corbyn has appeared at a number of rallies with Hamas leaders, and his pro-Islamist sympathies were revealed again earlier this week when, speaking on the campaign trail, he criticised the Trump administration’s recent special forces operation that resulted in the death of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, claiming that the US should have made more of an effort to take him alive.
The possibility, therefore, that Mr Corbyn could be Britain’s next prime minister needs to be given serious consideration by the US and other allies. The presence of a hard-Left leader in Downing Street could have serious implications for the future well-being of the Western alliance.
The Labour Party has vehemently rejected criticism from the 24 public figures who denounced Jeremy Corbyn and Labour over antisemitism and accused several of them of antisemitism, Islamophobia and misogyny.
Twenty-four non-Jewish authors, actors, television and radio presenters, human rights campaigners and technologists wrote to The Guardian denouncing Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party over antisemitism.
A Labour Party spokesperson responded to the letter saying: “It’s extraordinary that several of those who have signed this letter have themselves been accused of antisemitism, Islamophobia and misogyny. It’s less surprising that a number are Conservatives and Lib Dems.”
They added: “We take allegations of antisemitism extremely seriously, we are taking robust action and we are absolutely committed to rooting it out of our party and wider society.”
The signatories included Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales; actors and actresses Joanna Lumley OBE, Simon Callow CBE, and Tom Holland; authors David Cornwell (who writes as John le Carré), Fay Weldon CBE, Frederick Forsyth CBE, William Boyd CBE, Tony Parsons, Sathnam Sanghera, and Ed Husain; historians Sir Antony Beevor and Peter Frankopan; television presenters Dan Snow MBE, Nick Hewer, Dan Jones, Janina Ramirez, and Suzannah Lipscomb; radio presenter Maajid Nawaz; producer Terry Jervis; journalist Oz Katerji and human rights campaigners Trevor Phillips OBE, Fiyaz Mughal OBE, and Ghanem Nuseibeh.
Noting that the Party is now under statutory investigation by the Equality and Human Rights Commission following legal representations from Campaign Against Antisemitism, which is the complainant, the public figures said that Jews were in “anguish” and being ignored.
— SussexFriendsofIsrael (@SussexFriends) November 15, 2019
After weeks of the media digging dirt about candidates and the nominations closing yesterday, voters might hope they can vote with confidence their candidate is clean of controversy. South Cambridge residents will be dismayed to learn, however, their Labour candidate slipped through the net. One of Labour’s new O’Mara’s…
In preserved screenshots from the prospective candidate’s Facebook account, Guido spotted not only did Dan joke (Guido hopes) about voting BNP, but also called for Israel to be ripped up, posted “great day out at a Concentration camp” and asked “is it right that many of our MPs are also members of different ‘Friends of Israel pressure groups?”
Thirteen Israeli notables on Friday issued an open letter saying they welcomed the European Court of Justice’s ruling earlier this week that settlement products need to be labeled as such, but said the move is insufficient and the European Union must ban the import of settlement goods altogether.
“Israeli settlements are the leading cause of human rights violations against Palestinians, and settlement expansion is destroying the possibility of a two-state solution. By banning goods that originate in Israeli settlements, Europe would help support the differentiation between Israel per se and settlements in the occupied territories,” reads the letter published in the Guardian.
“We believe that the occupation is morally corrosive, strategically shortsighted, and thoroughly detrimental to peace. The international community has taken insufficient action in addressing this reality. Europe continues to support the occupation financially by allowing trade with Israeli settlements, which are illegal under international law.”
The letter was signed by former speaker of Knesset and head of the Jewish Agency Avraham Burg; former lawmaker Mossi Raz; former ambassador to France Prof. Eli Barnavi; former Israeli ambassador to South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, and Zimbabwe Ilan Baruch; former attorney general Prof. Michael Ben-Yair; former ambassador to South Africa and Turkey Alon Liel; former Israeli ambassador to the Czech Republic Erella Hadar; Israel Prize winners Prof David Harel, Prof Yehoshua Kolodny, Alex Levac, Prof David Shulman and Prof Zeev Sternhell; EMET Prize Laureate Miki Kratsman.
With the resurgence of antisemitism and the increasing prominence of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement (BDS) on social media platforms, one can expect Israelis to be vigilant and to support their beloved country, uniting with each other to save its reputation. Instead, some Israeli influencers go out of their way to tarnish Israel’s image online, which contributes to an Internet culture that is inherently biased against Israel.
A prime example of this problem can be seen when typing the word “apartheid” into Google. One of the first results shows the phrase “Apartheid Israel.” The official term, “apartheid,” refers to the situation in South Africa up until 1994, wherein official government policy instituted a system of racial segregation and political and economic discrimination against nonwhite citizens. Yet, the term “Apartheid South Africa” appears much further down than Israel in the search engine.
So why is Israel more commonly associated with apartheid, rather than its actual source? Let us illustrate with a case study.
Dr. Amiram Goldblum is a lecturer and researcher in the medicinal chemistry department at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. He is also a bully. He clearly has little to no understanding of the real meaning of apartheid, because he has the temerity to label Israel an apartheid state. Surely he knows that Israeli Jews and Israeli-Arabs work together, sit next to each other on the bus, and are both involved in Israeli politics — among many other things.
As a lecturer and an educator, you may expect professor Goldblum to pursue truth and objectivity. Instead, when scrolling through his Facebook profile, numerous allusions to Israel’s supposed apartheid nature can be found between birthday wishes and statuses disparaging Prime Minister Netanyahu and Israel’s right-wing government.
How did your country vote on today’s 8 UN resolutions targeting Israel?
No Abstain Yes
🇨🇦: 6 2
🇦🇺: 2 4 1
🇧🇷: 1 3 4
🇩🇪: 0 1 7
🇬🇧: 0 1 7 https://t.co/hNBtRb9Sp1
— UN Watch (@UNWatch) November 15, 2019
The Faroe Islands is planning to establish an official diplomatic mission in Jerusalem and recognize the long-contested city as Israel’s capital, the Danish newspaper Politiken reported on Friday.
The foreign minister of the self-governing archipelago in the North Atlantic Ocean – which is part of the Kingdom of Denmark — was quoted as saying the goal was to open the Jerusalem office in September or October 2020.
In the nearly two years since US President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and subsequently moved the American embassy to there from Tel Aviv, several countries have made noises about following suit, but none — except for Guatemala — have turned word into deed.
On October 25, a leader of a NATO member nation openly incited violence against non-Muslims.
On that day, Turkey’s president Recep Tayyip Erdogan attended the Friday prayers at the Great Çamlıca Mosque in Istanbul. He was accompanied by Istanbul’s governor Ali Yerlikaya, mayor Ekrem İmamoğlu, Istanbul’s chief of police Mustafa Çalışkan and the head of the Istanbul branch of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), Bayram Şenocak.
After the prayers, the hafiz of the mosque recited the Koranic Verse Al-Fath, which means “victory, triumph, conquest” in English. Then Erdogan took the microphone, reciting a part of the verse in Arabic and then in Turkish. He told the congregants:
“Our God commands us to be violent towards the kuffar (infidels). Who are we? The ummah [nation] of Mohammed. So [God] also commands us to be merciful to each other. So we will be merciful to each other. And we will be violent to the kuffar. Like in Syria.”
Erdogan then referred to another Koranic verse, As-Saff-13, in Arabic:
“Inshallah, God has promised us in Syria: ‘Nasrun minallahi ve fethun karib ve beşşiril mu’minin.’ [‘Victory from Allah and an imminent conquest; and give good tidings to the believers’]. We see it is happening right now. With the permission of Allah, we will see it even more… I will meet some presidents of foreign countries at the Dolmabahce Palace today. I ask for your permission now to go there.”
The congregants then cheered Erdogan on, shouting “Allahu Akbar” (Allah is the greatest).
Palestinian officials and factions on Saturday welcomed the United Nation’s vote in favor of extending the mandate of the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees (UNRWA), calling it a “victory” for the Palestinian cause and a “defeat” for the US and Israel.
Palestinian officials praised the vote as a “huge achievement” for Palestinian diplomacy and a “severe blow” to the US and Israel, the only two countries that opposed the extension of UNRWA’s mandate.
On Friday, the UN General Assembly approved the extension of UNRWA’s mandate.
The move was supported by 170 countries, with only the US and Israel voting against. Seven countries abstained: Cameroon, Guatemala, Nauru, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Vanautau, and Canada.
Palestinian Authority officials had recently campaigned in favor of extending the mandate of UNRWA, which was created in 1949 to supply aid to Palestinian refugees.
.@UNRWA is one of single greatest impediments to peace, by perpetuating this sense of Palestinian victimhood ad infinitum. It is also rotten to core with corruption & gives Palestinians false hope that they can flood Israel en masse & destroy it! Shame @EUatUN @EUinIsrael! https://t.co/w4flYOf0i6
— Arsen Ostrovsky (@Ostrov_A) November 15, 2019
Just a reminder, the ultimate goal of Palestinian ‘Right of Return’, is the destruction of #Israel – a task which @UNRWA, whose mandate just got renewed (again), seeks to facilitate 👇 https://t.co/NHdaqYMPJq
— Arsen Ostrovsky (@Ostrov_A) November 15, 2019
Protesters angered by Iran raising government-set gasoline prices by 50 percent blocked traffic in major cities and occasionally clashed with police Saturday, after a night of demonstrations punctuated by gunfire, in violence that reportedly killed at least one person.
The protests put renewed pressure on Iran’s government as it struggles to overcome the US sanctions strangling the country after US President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew America from Tehran’s nuclear deal with world powers.
Though largely peaceful, demonstrations devolved into violence in several instances, with online videos purporting to show police officers firing tear gas at protesters and mobs setting fires. While representing a political risk for Iranian President Hassan Rouhani ahead of February parliamentary elections, it also shows the widespread anger among the country’s 80 million people who have seen their savings evaporate amid scarce jobs and the national rial currency’s collapse.
The demonstrations took place in over a dozen cities in the hours following Rouhani’s decision at midnight Friday to cut gasoline subsidies to fund handouts for Iran’s poor. Gasoline in the country still remains among the cheapest in the world, with the new prices jumping up to a minimum of 15,000 rials per liter of gas — 50% up from the day before. That’s 13 cents a liter, or about 50 cents a gallon. A gallon of regular gasoline in the US costs $2.60 by comparison.
But in a nation where many get by as informal taxi drivers, cheap gasoline is considered a birthright. Iran is home to the world’s fourth-largest crude oil reserves. While expected for months, the decision still caught many by surprise and sparked immediate demonstrations overnight.
Protests in several cities in #Iran in response of tripled #Gas price:
”No Gaza, No Lebanon, I sacrifice my life only for Iran!”
“Reza Shah, bless your soul”
“Down with Dictator”
Reportedly at least one person has been killed.
Be the voice of voiceless!pic.twitter.com/vgbzCA6xdy
— Maryam shariatmadari (@Maryamshariatm) November 15, 2019
#IranProtests Angry ppl close down highway between Dezful & Shushtar over fuel price hike in Iran. The regime is deeply fearful of further unrest after it raised fuel prices 50% to offset US sanctions.
(video via MEK network)
— M. Hanif Jazayeri (@HanifJazayeri) November 15, 2019
Wearing surgical masks, motorcycle helmets and clothes stained with blood and grime, they populate the protest barricades of Baghdad, chanting for the government to fall.
Young Iraqis have been out in their thousands since mass anti-government protests kicked off on Oct. 1 in the capital and then quickly spread to the country’s south.
More than 300 people have been killed as security forces have responded to the mostly peaceful demonstrations by firing live ammunition, rubber bullets and tear-gas canisters directly at the bodies of protesters.
“We are here demanding justice,” said Mohammad, a young protester who declined to give his last name. “I want justice for my brother who was killed on this bridge. I want justice for my friend who was killed here on this bridge.”
Mohammad, wearing an Iraqi flag as a face mask to protect against wafting tear gas, was standing under the Jumhuriya “Republic” Bridge, where fierce confrontations with riot police have flared over the last three weeks.
Above him, hundreds of young men manned barricades made of concrete blocks, iron sheets and tires, locked in a stalemate with security forces directly across from them.
Nearby, medical volunteers like Rand Mohammad had set up volunteer medical clinics where they treat the wounded.
Iraqi protesters bring out Lions to counter police dogs. pic.twitter.com/AWGg2WzVBr
— Benjamin Young Savage (ᐱᓐᒋᐱᓐ) (@benjancewicz) November 14, 2019
New York University’s Asian/Pacific/American Studies Institute has denied a pro-Israel student’s request to host a Zionist speaker in response to an event it hosted last month with anti-Israel Palestinian-American lawyer Noura Erakat, according to emails obtained by JNS.
Citing NYU’s policy regarding speakers, which includes “the free exchange of ideas and open inquiry are the bedrock principles at NYU,” Ben Newhouse, a junior, emailed on Oct. 15 to request that the department of social and cultural analysis (SCA) host one of the following speakers in response to the Oct. 23 event with Erakat as part of her tour promoting her book Justice for Some: Law and the Question of Palestine: former Israeli Ambassador to the United States Michael Oren; Alan Dershowitz, constitutional law scholar and author of The Case for Israel; Alex Safian, associate director of the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA); legal scholar Eugene Kontorovich; and former World Jewish Congress secretary-general Dan Diker.
In the email, Newhouse said that having one of these speakers would “show the school’s commitment to freedom of expression and inquiry. Sponsoring just [emphasis his] Noura Erakat’s perspective undermines NYU’s promise to provide its students with a free exchange of ideas and open inquiry.”
Erakat’s book claims that the “Israeli-Palestinian conflict can only be understood through a settler-colonial framework; the international community has failed Palestinians by bending the laws in favor of the Jews; and attempts should be made to prosecute Israeli veterans for war crimes,” wrote CAMERA campus adviser and strategic planner and former Israel Defense Forces paratrooper Yoni Michanie.
“The words have been associated by some people with anti-Semitism.”
This statement is so inadequate as to be demeaning to the Jewish students and to the speaker and the subject. If you can’t call out rank bigotry when it’s happening on your watch then find another watch. https://t.co/lya5xEhPVD
— Seth Mandel (@SethAMandel) November 15, 2019
It is a conscious choice by Vassar and Dr. Bradley to create an atmosphere in which Jewish students cannot feel safe. They have made their decision to inform Jews that they are not welcome on campus, and if they choose to be on campus, they’re on their own. For shame.
— Seth Mandel (@SethAMandel) November 15, 2019
During a question & answer session at Pomona College following a film screening of Gaza Fights For Freedom, a pro-Palestinian documentary, film director Abby Martin accused a Jewish student journalist with the Claremont Independent, who asked a question about Hamas’s activities against Israeli civilians, of being associated with “white nationalists” and insisted that the New York Times was “pro-Israeli Propaganda.”
When Independent staff writer Jordan Esrig asked a question about Hamas’s activities against Israeli civilians, Martin responded by stating that Esrig, who is Jewish, is associated with “white nationalists,” drawing cheers and laughter from the crowd consisting mainly of Claremont Colleges professors and students. One audience member also yelled out “white nationalist” at the student journalist. Martin also assailed the journalist as being “tied to an organization [the Independent] that is tied with Breitbart.” The Independent is not affiliated with Breitbart or any external national media outlets. Co-director Mike Prysner also lashed out at mainstream media, saying that “the New York Times [is] a media organization that in fact tells, that only tells, really just tells the Israeli propaganda side of the story.”
As the Independent previously noted, both speakers have a history of controversy. Claremont Progressive Israel Alliance (CPIA), released a statement condemning the event. Martin, a former contractor and anchor for Russian state news agency RT and Venezuelan state news agency Telasur, is a self-proclaimed “radical” and conspirator. Until recently, she claimed that the September 11 terrorist attacks were an inside job by the government, and recently stated on the Joe Rogan Show that the CIA is responsible for a string of assassinations, including those of Martin Luther King, Robert F. Kennedy, and John F. Kennedy. Both Martin and Prysner have made antisemetic comments previously. Both have attempted to demean the Holocaust by comparing it to the ongoing political crisis in Israel, and by comparing Jewish Israelis to Nazis.
During the Q&A session, Martin defended Hamas and placed sole blame on Israel for the lack of peace between both states.
According to a Chabad of Arizona State University (ASU) email forwarded along to The Daily Wire earlier today, the on-campus ASU Jewish community experienced a horrific act of anti-Semitism earlier this week. Worse still, this latest flare-up seems to be part of an ongoing troubling trend.
“The current semester has brought some alarming events with it,” the email from Rabbi Shmuel Tiechtel begins. “In the past months the State Press has printed multiple articles supporting the Antisemitic BDS movement. Horrible Antisemitism flyers were distributed on campus. And then there was the incident [on Wednesday night].”
The email from Rabbi Tiechtel went on to explain the details of a terrible interruption of an event from earlier this week at ASU that honored wounded veterans of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). The protesters — who, to once again emphasize, deemed it fit to protest an event honoring wounded IDF veterans — apparently spewed anti-Semitic, Jew-hating vitriol in an attempt to harass students and possibly shut down the event in its entirety.
“Last night (Wednesday), here at Arizona State University, students wearing emblems of anti-Israel organizations, and waving signs encouraging violence against Jews, tried to shut down an event right here on campus in the Memorial Union,” the email explained. “We were hosting a special event together with Hillel, JAC, Students Supporting Israel and Stand with Us which featured Dor Moguiliansky and Aviv Yasmin Bar, two wounded IDF veterans who were going to share their stories. Before the event began, approximately 80 anti-Israel protesters sat in and blockaded the room where our event was supposed to be held and were screaming against Israel,” the email continued.
“Campus police asked us to move to another room in the [Memorial Union]. We went to the other room but those who espoused hate and anti-Israel slogans followed and tried to disrupt the event once again. ASU police had to stand guard at the door the entire event to make the Jewish students feel safe. Understandably, the protests caused many Jewish students to feel uncomfortable, many Jewish students felt intimidated and if not for the ASU police presence there, they would not have felt safe,” Rabbi Tiechtel wrote.
Two men — including a prominent neo-Nazi activist — have been arrested in connection with the recent vandalization of 84 Jewish tombstones in the central Danish city of Randers, the BBC reported on Thursday.
The cemetery desecration took place last Saturday — the 81st anniversary of Kristallnacht, or “Night of Broken Glass,” which was a prelude to the Nazi Holocaust.
One of the detained suspects was identified as 38-year-old Jacob Vullum Andersen, a leader of the Nordic Resistance Movement, while the name of the other, a 27-year-old, was not published.
Andersen has denied involvement, but was quoted as telling Danish news outlet TV2, “We think it is positive that people have finally woken up and recognized that Jewish power and Jewish infiltration in society are extremely harmful and undesirable.”
Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen wrote on Facebook last Sunday, “It pains me to think what it must be like to see the last resting place of loved ones exposed to such disgusting vandalism.”
Netflix is a media behemoth, and it has irrevocably altered the entertainment landscape in a number of ways. While it may like to put front and center its stable of prestige feature filmmakers such as Martin Scorsese, Noah Baumbach, Ava DuVernay, and Alfonso Cuarón, everyone knows it’s the “wait, I gotta see one more” programming that keeps everyone hooked. That means cooking shows, British soap operas and, perhaps somewhat macabre-ly, true crime documentaries.
Netflix hit paydirt with “Making A Murderer” in 2015 and since then it’s been pumping them out like clockwork. There are many who watch them, weirdly, as a type of comfort food. The series all follow a formula (lots of withheld information sprung just as each episode ends) to inspect mankind’s darker impulses at a grisly yet entertaining remove. Something with a title like “Evil Genius: The True Story of America’s Most Diabolical Bank Heist” has an irresistible tabloid appeal. Which is why I was a little surprised when I learned they made one about the attempted genocide of the Jewish people.
John Demjanjuk was my first Nazi. I was too young for the Eichmann trial or the march in Skokie, Illinois. The concept of actual, living Nazis — either the ones from Europe that killed much of my father’s family or a modern day variety wearing swastikas for more than shock value — felt a million miles from me. I grew up in a New Jersey suburb around a lot of other Jews. Nazis were something to watch get flung out of jeeps by Indiana Jones.
But in the mid-1980s the evening news introduced an old man from an Ohio neighborhood that didn’t look much different than my own backyard. His Eastern European accent was like my grandfather’s, and the grandfathers of all my friends. But John Demjanjuk was, according to many, a concentration camp guard, and not just any guard, but the demonic “Ivan the Terrible,” the representation of pure, depraved evil that couldn’t exist in reality, much less in this country.
“Of course it’s him!” my great aunt hissed when his picture came on TV. “We don’t know, we don’t know,” my grandfather, an autodidact and farmer who never let passions cloud his mind, would reply. Ivan the Terrible (who could pronounce Demjanjuk?) was a constant topic of conversation for years. And he terrified me.
Netflix has said it will make changes to a documentary that featured maps showing German Nazi death camps inside the borders of modern Poland.
The streaming service said on Thursday it will amend Season 1 of The Devil Next Door after the Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki wrote in a letter to CEO Reed Hastings that filmmakers were ‘rewriting history’.
The series tells the true story of John Demjanjuk, a ‘retired Ukrainian-American autoworker living a peaceful life with his family in Cleveland, Ohio suburbs in the 1980s’ until a group of Holocaust survivors identify his photograph as notoriously cruel Nazi death camp guard ‘Ivan the Terrible’.
But some maps in the documentary were criticized by Morawiecki on Monday for implying that Poland existed at that time as an independent nation within its postwar borders.
In a tweet Thursday, Netflix said: ‘We stand by the filmmakers of The Devil Next Door, their research and their work.
‘To avoid any misunderstanding, in the coming days we will be adding text to some of the maps featured in the series.’
The PM had said it suggested the country could share responsibility for the atrocities committed at the camps during World War Two.
US President Donald Trump told the story of an Army sergeant who defied a Nazi command to identify which of his fellow American soldiers were Jewish.
During his Veterans Day speech Monday in New York, Trump told the story of Master Sgt. Roddie Edmonds, Military.com reported.
Edmonds, who died in 1985, was a senior noncommissioned officer in a German prisoner of war camp in 1944. When the camp commander ordered all the Jews to step forward, he refused to allow it.
“We are all Jews,” said Edmonds, who was not Jewish.
Threatened with a gun, he said, “You can shoot me, but you will have to shoot all of us, and when the war comes to an end you will be tried as a war criminal.”
The commandant turned and walked away.
Trump pointed out that two people connected to Edmonds were in the audience: his granddaughter Lauren Matthews and former Staff Sgt. Lester Tanner, one of the Jewish soldiers saved by Edmonds.
An eagle-eyed plane spotter has noticed the name of one of the new Dreamliner planes ordered by Ethiopian Airlines: Tel Aviv.
The plane’s name was revealed as it left the Boeing plant in Charleston, South Carolina.
According to the Ynet news site, the moniker was supposed to be a surprise and was to be revealed in a ceremony at Ben Gurion airport.
The Ethiopian state airline operates two daily flights between Tel Aviv and Addis Ababa.
In March, a Boeing 737 MAX 8 Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 went down six minutes after takeoff, apparently due to a technical malfunction, killing all 157 people on board including two Israelis.
The annual evening of tribute for IDF soldiers took place in Los Angeles on Thursday night at the Beverly Hilton Hotel with approximately 1,000 guests from the United States and Israel.
The event, at which a $29 million donation (NIS 101 million) was raised for the benefit of IDF soldiers, was held in memory of the late Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein, founder of the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (IFCJ).
Sgt. (Res.) Amit Kadosh, who was part of a special operation to eliminate a top Hamas terrorist, was one of the IDF representatives present at the event. Following his IDF service, Amit was awarded the IMPACT! scholarship, and studied computer science and business administration at Tel Aviv University. During the event, Amit surprised his girlfriend of seven years, Talia, by asking her to marry him from the stage.
Additional IDF soldiers who took part in the event were: Lieutenant Colonel (Res.) Izzy Azogi, who immigrated to Israel from the United States, joined the IDF, and returned to service after he was seriously wounded by a mortar shell; Lieutenant Jerusalem, a soldier of Ethiopian descent whose vision impairment didn’t stop her from enlisting in the IDF and becoming an officer in the Northern Command; Lieutenant N., a Druze fighter in an elite unit in the Paratroopers Brigade, who joined the IDF despite the opposition of his family; Corporal Eden Elena, a singer in a military band and the winner of the reality show The X-Factor; and Sgt. Y., a lone soldier from the United States serving in an elite unit.
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