The Myth of Israel’s Demographic Doomsday
Critics of Israel love to exploit Jewish fears and anxieties. The most extreme resort to Holocaust inversion, boycotts, blacklists, and other singling-out methods reminiscent of Europe’s anti-Semitic past. Secretary of State John Kerry likes to wave around the threat of Israel’s demographic extinction.
Acute Israeli sensitivity on this matter came to the fore in the late 1960s, when Israeli rule over the newly won Gaza Strip and West Bank was thought by many to be untenable owing to much-higher Palestinian birth rates. If Israel chose to annex the territories, it would be obliged either to disenfranchise their Palestinian inhabitants, making Israel undemocratic, or extend the vote and watch Israel’s Jewish majority turn into a minority. For Israel to remain both a democratic and a Jewish state, according to the conventional wisdom, it would have to give the territories up. “The womb of the Arab woman,” the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat famously said, was his “best weapon.”
Fast-forward five decades. According to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS), the number of (non-Jewish) Arabs living in the West Bank, Gaza, and East Jerusalem (4.62 million) and in Israel (1.68 million) for the first time matches the number of Jews (6.3 million). Taking into account still-higher Palestinian birthrates, as neatly graphed out in a September 2016 full-page New York Times advertisement by a pro-Palestinian group, the Jewish population in the expanse of territory “from the Mediterranean Sea to the Jordan River” is projected to decline to 44 percent in 2030.
In his drive to wrest Israeli concessions he believes will break the Israeli-Palestinian diplomatic logjam, Secretary Kerry has repeatedly warned of a demographic doomsday for Israel. “How does Israel possibly maintain its character as a Jewish and democratic state when from the river to the sea, there would not even be a Jewish majority?” he warned last December. Time is “running out” for Israel, Kerry maintains, insinuating that Arabs will be even less likely to accept a Jewish state as part of the former Palestine mandate once they become an overall majority, instead returning to their demand for a “one-state” solution. Israel then winds up “either being an apartheid state with second-class citizens — or … a state that destroys the capacity of Israel to be a Jewish state.”
Build a wall, secure the border, and vet Muslims to stop the infiltration of terrorists. This is not Donald Trump speaking – it is what has actually been done in Israel. Americans can take a page from Israel’s Border Guard to protect themselves.
American Thinker interviewed author Samuel M. Katz regarding his book The Ghost Warriors, about Israel’s elite force of undercover operatives. They are drawn from the nation’s diverse backgrounds and ethnicities, united in their ability to walk among the enemy as no one else dared. They are called Ya’mas and use many undercover tactics.
Katz wrote the book to emphasize how “Israelis learned about using counter-terrorism inside city, street, and neighborhoods. The United States now realizes it is also something they will have to contend with, a struggle of civilizations. The book covers a period of Israeli history and is relevant to Americans because both nations must battle terrorism on a daily basis. It is a warrior’s tale of a select group of individuals who accepted the challenge of going daily, nightly into enemy-controlled territory, usually in disguise. The enemy wonders who to trust or where the Israelis are lurking.
“Part of the Border Guards’ strategy is to inflict ‘terror’ on the terrorists. They had to spend just as much time in watching their backs as planning terrorist attacks. Part of the Border Guard’s duties is to capture the extremists to ensure the flow of information continues.”
Douglas Murray: The Guilty Verdict Dutch Politicians Wanted So Much
Members of the Netherlands’ Labour Party, who never of course were prosecuted, have wielded incomparably more damning icepicks than “fewer Moroccans”.
The irony cannot have been lost on the wider world that on the same day that news of Wilders’s conviction came out the other news from Holland was the arrest of a 30 year-old terror suspect in Rotterdam suspected of being about to carry out ‘an act of terrorism’.
Internationally it will continuously be used against Wilders that he has been convicted of ‘inciting discrimination’ even though the charge is about a proto-crime – a crime that has not even occurred: like charging the makers of a car chase movie for ‘inciting speeding’. As with many ‘hate-crime’ trials across the free world, from Denmark to Canada, the aim of the proceedings is to blacken the name of the party on trial so that they are afterwards formally tagged as a lesser, or non-person. If this sounds Stalinist it is because it is.
In the long-term, though, there is something even more insidious about this trial. For as we have noted here before, if you prosecute somebody for saying that they want fewer Moroccans in the Netherlands then the only legal views able to be expressed about the matter are that the number of Moroccans in the country must remain at precisely present numbers or that you would only like more Moroccans in the country. In a democratic society this sort of matter ought to be debatable.
If there is one great mental note of which 2016 ought to have reminded the world, it is how deeply unwise it is to try to police opinion. For when you do so you not only make your society less free, but you disable yourself from being able to learn what your fellow citizens are actually – perhaps ever more secretly – feeling. Then one day you will hear them.
An Islamic State leader linked to the 2015 attacks at the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo was killed in a US airstrike in Syria, American military officials said Friday.
Officials said Boubaker el Hakim was killed in Raqqa on November 26. He is believed to have played a role in IS attack planning. The officials weren’t authorized to discuss the strike publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.
El Hakim, a 33-year-old French Tunisian, was a mentor to the brothers who gunned down cartoonists at the French paper in January 2015.
He was arrested in Syria and sent to France, where he was convicted in 2008 and sentenced to seven years in prison. He was considered at the time to be among the most radicalized of the network of young extremists from the Paris area, which included the brothers Said and Cherif Kouachi.
The Kouachi brothers led police on a two-day manhunt after attacking Charlie Hebdo, then hid out in a printing plant. Police surrounded the building, and the brothers were killed in a shootout after a daylong siege.
At the same time, another attacker, Amedy Coulibaly, was taking more hostages in a kosher supermarket in Paris. He was also killed when police raided the store.
The attacks that week on Charlie Hebdo, police and the kosher market killed 17 people.
The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) considers the Orlando nightclub shooting, an ISIS-inspired attack that left 49 dead, a right-wing plot, along with the shootings of police officers by anti-white terrorists.
The SPLC maintains a list called “Terror from the Right,” which according to them is “a synopsis of radical-right terrorist plots, conspiracies and racist rampages since the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995.” The list includes individuals such as the Olympic Park bomber Eric Rudolph and Charleston church shooter Dylann Roof. (RELATED: Just 13 Right-Wing Extremists Have Been Charged With Terrorism Since 9/11)
However, among abortion center bombers and white supremacists are Omar Mir Seddique Mateen, Gavin Eugene Long, Luqman Ameen Abdullah and Micah Xavier Johnson.
Mateen was the perpetrator behind the June Orlando gay club shooting in which he killed 50 individuals, including himself, and left 53 wounded. Mateen pledged allegiance to the Islamic State before he died and was on the FBI’s radar as an Islamist sympathizer before the attack. There were reports that Mateen was gay, but the FBI said they had found no evidence to corroborate this.
American Jews account for a shockingly disproportionate number of hate crime victims, according to 2015 FBI statistics. The Bureau defines a hate crime as “an offense against a person or property motivated in whole or in part by an offender’s bias against a race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, ethnicity, or gender identity.”
The FBI reported that of the 1,244 reported victims of hate crimes last year, 664, or 53.4%, were Jewish. By comparison, there were 257 victims of anti-Muslim hate crimes, or 20.7% of the total figure.
Indeed, in 2015 there were more Jewish victims of hate crimes in the U.S. then all of the other victims of religious groups combined
Yet, this conclusion is not reflected in U.S. news media coverage—or popular perception—of hate crime victims. Mark Perry, a scholar at the Washington D.C.-based think tank American Enterprise Institute (AEI), noted:
“According to a Google news search for the term ‘hate crimes’ along with the name of each of those three groups [Muslims, Blacks and Jews], there are 164,000 results for ‘hate crimes’+black, 134,000 results for ‘hate crimes’ + Muslims and only 36,400 results for ‘hate crimes’+Jews.”
Responding to Jeremy Corbyn’s decision to go to notorious Israel hater Hatem Bazian’s book launch, Jennifer Gerber, Director of Labour Friends of Israel, told Guido Fawkes:
We find it strange that Jeremy Corbyn would think it’s appropriate to attend an event organised by a group who say the party he leads is “indebted to Jewish financiers with Zionist leanings”. We hope in future Jeremy will think more carefully about the organisations he associates himself with.
Joe Glasman, Head of Political and Government Investigations at Campaign Against Antisemitism also told Guido:
A week ago, the Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, Tom Watson admitted the presence of antisemitism in the Labour Party and promised firm action against it. It seems that this is Jeremy Corbyn’s response. Whilst other MPs were visiting Israel’s Holocaust memorial, Jeremy Corbyn said he was too busy. Instead, he has taken time out of his onerous schedule to meet Hatem Bazian, who has been closely associated with Islamist antisemitism in public, at an event held by a charity which organises an annual march in support of antisemitic genocidal terrorist group Hezbollah. This is unmistakable in its symbolism and signals that Jeremy Corbyn is defying Tom Watson and the Jewish community.
Keith Ellison, the Minnesota congressman who is seeking the chairmanship the Democratic National Committee, is beginning to feel the heat for his past profession of radical views and associations with extremists. At the New York Times, Jonathan Martin and Maggie Haberman report that “some Democrats” are concerned about Ellison’s defense of Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, who has made anti-Semitic and anti-white pronouncements for decades.
As the Times notes, Ellison defended Farrakhan in the 1990s, saying he was not an anti-Semite in a 1995 Minneapolis newspaper column that was first reported in THE WEEKLY STANDARD by Scott W. Johnson. Ellison, a Muslim who no longer associates with the Nation of Islam, is also to the left of the Democratic party on issues related to Israel. Johnson recently detailed for TWS all of Ellison’s controversial positions and affinity for Farrakhan.
But here’s what happened when the Times reporters attempted to interview Ellison for their story:
Aides to Mr. Ellison were going to make him available for a telephone interview, but then declined when informed that he would be asked about his past comments on Mr. Farrakhan. They emailed a list of his links to the Jewish community and a statement that said, “Democrats need an organizer who will energize the grass-roots across this country to build the party from the bottom up.”
It’s a shame Manchester Uni decided to adopt a policy of Boycott Divestment and Sanctions. I guess now they’ll be off the internet and their students will stop using their Apple Macs and mobiles.
Or they’ll just revel in the style over substance arguments that are so fashionable on campus and do nothing except riot whenever an Israeli turns up on their campus ala UCL and KCL.
The Union of Jewish Students says this about the vote;
On the night, Jewish students who argued against the motion were made to feel as if their concerns about their potential marginalisation were not being heard. Despite offering alternatives that included creating a discussion forum to engage with the Israeli-Palestinian debate, many on the Senate believed that a targeted BDS tactic was more constructive than any form of engagement.
On one of the walls describing the history of the Stasi, they were modelled on the Russian USSR state secret police who were the precursor to the KGB. Their purpose was to “establish the dictatorship of the proletariat”.
Within communist philosophy is a strong suggestion that a state has to be first established by force, using “the dictatorship of the proletariat”, in order to function.
Now my question is, perhaps the belief of those left wing radicals who support the BDS, is along these lines. Perhaps they believe that Israel must be destroyed and brought to its knees before their kind of positive so called Palestinian nation can be built in its place.
I do not know, but I cannot see otherwise how they condone the kind of destructive and anti-peace approaches that the BDS utilise.
If they do then their reasoning is very clearly flawed.
1. What will happen if (God forbid) Israel was destroyed?
Well it certainly won’t be a proletarian led nation with lots of wonderful socialist ideals in place, that is for sure. It will simply be another Muslim-led dictatorship which will destroy everything remotely Jewish and different and probably everyone around it. Look at all the other similar countries for examples. None have every made it into the “top ten happiest nations” list have they?
2. How does Boycotting, Divesting and Sanctioning do anything at all for peace?
Simple answer – it doesn’t!
All it does is divide people further and cause greater rifts and arguments, death and destruction, poverty and irresponsible leadership.
Yet how many European people support this!?
A ridiculous number. Why? Because many do not understand the effect or purposes of BDS.
Relations between Israel and the rest of the Middle East could improve if the Jewish state’s Arab population was permitted to work in other parts of the region, a leading Saudi Arabian journalist suggested this week.
In an interview with Washington think tank the Hudson Institute, Abdulrahman Al-Rashed, the former editor of the pan-Arab newspaper Asharq al-Awsat and ex-general manager of the Saudi-owned Al Arabiya television channel, said a work initiative could ease tensions in the absence of a peace agreement with the Palestinians.
But Al-Rashed also stressed that such a plan would be an interim measure, and would not replace a proper resolution to the conflict. There could be no official ties between Israel and Saudi Arabia until a peace agreement was reached with the Palestinians, he said.
Saudi Arabia was the driving force behind the 2002 Arab Peace Initiative, which calls for Arab world normalization with Israel in return for a peace agreement with the Palestinians that includes a full Israeli withdrawal from lands captured during the 1967 Six Day War and a solution to the issue of Palestinian refugees.
“If the question is specifically what can be done now — before the conflict is resolved — to increase connectivity, perhaps a new step would be for Saudi Arabia to formally lift its ban on work visas for Israel’s Arab citizens, and for Israel to welcome and foster Arab Israelis’ professional deployment to any Arab country,” Al-Rashed told Jewish interviewer Joseph Braude, according to the Ynetnews website.
Israel will Monday receive its first F-35 stealth fighter jets, hailed as technological marvels whose helmets alone cost more than most people’s homes but criticized for their price and initial flaws.
Built by US aerospace giant Lockheed Martin, the first two planes’ arrival in Israel is being welcomed as a major event for the country’s military as it seeks to maintain dominance in the turbulent Middle East.
US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter is to attend the arrival along with his Israeli counterpart Avigdor Lieberman at the Nevatim air base in the country’s south.
The delivery of the first two of 50 F-35s to be purchased by Israel comes as the years-long development of the most expensive plane in history reaches a critical stage.
While a list of countries have ordered the planes, Israel, which receives more than $3 billion a year in US defense aid, will be the first with an operational F-35 squadron outside the United States.
“I think we don’t fully understand the big advantage of the F-35,” an Israeli Air Force official said.
Golan Heights, Israel (Sorry Bashar): The mysterious dark pillar of clouds that stood between an IDF patrol and ISIS on the Golan Heights last week already has big plans for what’s he’s going to do after the army. The vertical cumulus cloud, named ‘Boaz’, said he is ‘counting down the days‘ until the end of his enlistment, at which point he and some of his army buddies plan to go on a 3 month trip to India and Nepal that he says “is going to be sick“, “really crazy” and “just out of control“. Boaz, who comes from a family of storm clouds from outside of Israel and therefore qualifies as a Chayal Boded or “Lone soldier”, finishes his enlistment next May. The Daily Freier Caught up with Boaz on Thursday night at a bar on Dizengoff street as he enjoyed a weekend pass with a few of the guys from his unit.
Boaz told us that they chose this particular bar on Dizengoff “because one of the guys in my squad said he had a bit of luck here“. When we arrived, Boaz and his buddies spotted several women from a “MASA” exchange program sitting by themselves and they quickly introduced themselves and sat down at their table. Soon, Boaz stretched out, exhaled, leaned back in his chair and nonchalantly wrapped his cloud arms behind the back of two young women as he told them stories about his Army duty and how just this week he “like saved my entire platoon from ISIS“.
Later, Boaz admitted that while he is getting a lot of credit for last week’s encounter, he has also gotten in some trouble during his enlistment. Last year, he received non-judicial punishment from his company commander after a prank he played against the Mossad Spy Vulture went horribly wrong. “That bird is just an idiot. So I created an updraft of hot air while he was flying. Unfortunately, that accidentally forced him into Lebanese air space where he was captured. Last I checked he was home free and had joined ‘Breaking the Silence‘ or something. And I got 30 days confined to base.”
Three Israelis mistakenly drove into the West Bank city of Ramallah on Saturday, and were safely rescued with the assistance of Palestinian Authority security forces.
The three were escorted out of the city by the PA forces and handed over to Israeli police at the Focus checkpoint near the settlement of Beit El, said the Ynet news website.
There were no further details of the incident reported.
The incident was the latest in a spate of similar events of Israelis — mostly soldiers — being rescued after erroneously entering Palestinian areas of the West Bank.
Last month, an IDF soldier was lightly wounded when rocks were thrown at his vehicle after he and three other servicemen “mistakenly entered” a Palestinian village in the northern West Bank, the army said.
The army did not say how the soldiers accidentally entered Anabta, a town east of Tulkarem. In the past, however, such incidents occurred due to troops relying on smartphone navigation apps.
As the soldiers were exiting the Palestinian city, local residents began throwing rocks at the military vehicle, the army said. The four soldiers, some of them reservists, were escorted out of the city by Palestinian police and in conjunction with the Defense Ministry’s Civil Administration.
According to a report by the UK Daily Mail, Russia has just about given up on launching missions into Syria from its aircraft carrier, the Admiral Kuznetsov, following a “calamitous voyage from Russia to the Mediterranean.” Fighters and bombers from the carrier have reportedly been moved to the Syrian air base at Hmeymim.
A fighter jet slid off the deck of the carrier and was lost at sea earlier this week, the second aircraft to be lost during Admiral Kutzentsov’s deployment to the Mediterranean. Less than three weeks before that, a pilot was forced to eject from his MiG-29 fighter when he could not land, reportedly because of a malfunction of the arresting wire.
The pilot of the MiG-29, Igor Matkovsky, was born in Crimea long before the Russians annexed it, so a cheeky Ukrainian volunteer organization called The Peacemaker gave him an award for “the destruction of the fourth-generation MiG-29K carrier-based multi-role fighter in the Mediterranean Sea, which abruptly halted using it for war crimes related to the mass killings of peaceful Syrian citizens.”
“We believe that our Medal of Honor will be a pleasant surprise for Igor Matkovsky in the twilight of his military career,” the Peacemakers declared.
It was the latest ignominy for the Admiral Kutznetsov, which Popular Mechanics dubbed “Russia’s sad, smokey carrier,” which “doesn’t seem to be doing much of anything.”
The United Kingdom and Gulf countries will work together to counter Iran’s “aggressive regional actions,” British Prime Minister Theresa May announced Wednesday.
May was in Bahrain for the Gulf Cooperation Council summit, which also included leaders from Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates. The UK and those countries signed a joint communique pledging to counter “Iran’s destabilizing activities.”
“I am clear-eyed about the threat that Iran poses to the Gulf and the wider Middle East,” May said in a speech. She reiterated her nation’s commitment to countering Iranian aggression, “whether in Lebanon, Iraq, Yemen, Syria, or in the Gulf itself.”
Ambassadors of eleven Arab nations, including all the Gulf Cooperation Council members, complained in a letter to United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon last month that Iran’s support for terror and interference in the internal affairs of other nations had worsened since the implementation of the nuclear deal last year.
A theme park has been opened in Iran where young children can dress up in full combat gear, hold fake AK-47 rifles and take part in mock fights against the Islamic Republic’s sworn enemies — including Israel.
At the City of Games for Revolutionary Children, located in Mashad, kids as young as 8 are taken through various stations aimed at teaching them about Iranian military history, and psyching them up for any battles that the Shiite country might face.
In one station, the children are encouraged to throw balls at effigies of Islamic State fighters. In another, they can fire plastic bullets at a depiction of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, according to the Iranian official in charge.
“The children follow various paths simulating fighting the enemy, and at some places, the children learn about simple [combat] methods such as firing plastic artillery shells at a simulated enemy as well as aiming and firing a rifle with plastic bullets at [an effigy] of Netanyahu and at US and Israeli flags,” said Cultural Center director Hamid Sadeghi, in an interview translated by watchdog group MEMRI last week.
“[Afterwards,] the children are blindfolded and asked to throw a ball at an Israeli flag in the form of a puzzle and knock it down, and then to assemble a puzzle of an Iranian flag.” In this station, “the children learn that the most important element[s] for attaining victory are wisdom and intelligence for fighting the enemy,” Sadeghi added.
Students at ten Italian high schools included Nazi leader Adolf Hitler’s autobiography Mein Kampf in recently-compiled lists of their top ten favorite books, The Local reported on Thursday.
Italian Education Ministry official Alessandro Fusacchia was quoted as calling the students’ choice a “particularly nasty case.” According to Fusacchia, students had been asked to pick from books by Italian authors that were published after 2000.
“We are looking into it, but we are convinced that it was not a bad interpretation of the request, but rather a free choice,” he said.
Earlier this year, the Italian newspaper Il Giornale faced criticism after it distributed free copies of an annotated version of Mein Kampf.
As reported in The Algemeiner, a 2,000-page, two-volume annotated version of Mein Kampf was published in January by Munich’s Institute for Contemporary History after a 70-year copyright held by the German state of Bavaria expired. At the time, the institute said the new version “seeks to thoroughly deconstruct Hitler’s propaganda in a lasting manner.”
Take a stroll on the cobblestoned streets of Budapest’s historic “Jewish Quarter,” within a walkable radius of the Great Synagogue on Dohány Street with its richly ornamented Moorish designs, and you encounter a vibrant urban shtetl.
Here, amid ornate, newly renovated Habsburg-era buildings, a stylish kosher restaurant is open for business near a place called Hummus Bar, while a nearby bistro invites all comers with “traditional Jewish pastrami sandwiches.” There, near the building where Theodor Herzl was born, a couple of souvenir shops, decorated with Old World Yiddishkeit charm, peddle silver hanukkiot, embroidered kippot and leather-bound siddurim.
Klezmer music plays on a recorder somewhere, and decorative Stars of David are everywhere.
Over an arched entrance, a neon light beams “Mazel Tov” at passersby – the sign of a bar mitzva or wedding unfolding within. Walk on, and you’ll come across a small, elegantly decorated theater named after Baruch Spinoza, which stages plays with Jewish themes.
On a sidewalk, Jewish-American tourists rub shoulders with a modern-Orthodox family of five from Israel. Presently, a local ultra-Orthodox rabbi pops into view before disappearing down a street that takes you to a yeshiva.
And you’ve barely even started.
Budapest has 23 shuls, often within sight of one another, and numerous Jewish institutions – including schools, hospices, and a hospital – for its estimated 50,000 Jewish residents, who comprise the vast majority of the country’s Jewish population.
AMONG THE photographs of the Cuban Jewish community decorating a wall of the meeting room of the Patronato de la Comunidad Hebrea de Cuba ‒ commonly known as “the Patronato” and which also encompasses the Conservative Templo Beth Shalom ‒ is one of the current community president, Adela Dworin, with an enigmatic smile, seated next to Fidel Castro before he stepped down as Cuba’s leader in favor of his younger brother Raul Castro in 2008.
Both Castro brothers have visited the synagogue in Havana and Dworin is said to have a direct channel of communication with the Castros for any concern she may have about the needs of the Jewish community.
In her book, “An Island Called Home: Returning to Jewish Cuba,” the University of Michigan Anthropology professor notes that Fidel Castro has told journalists that he has Jewish roots dating back to the Spanish Inquisition.
In person, it is hard to discern the reason behind Dworin’s Mona Lisa smile as she welcomes unexpected Israeli guests of the backpacking variety into the Patronato library, where she has been a fixture for more than 30 years.
In recent years, American audiences have become familiar with Israeli television through its frequent overseas adaptations. The most famous of these, of course, is the hit show Homeland, a take-off of the Israeli series Prisoners of War. But with the advent of online streaming, U.S. audiences no longer have to wait for an American outlet to pick up and remake Israel’s greatest hits. Instead, they can just watch the originals with English subtitles.
Case in point: Netflix. Of late, the media giant has quietly been acquiring the rights to some of the Jewish state’s best television and film. This month alone, they will have added the country’s new Best Picture winner and its newly-crowned Best Drama Series. Looking for something to watch over the weekend while escaping the winter chill? Here are a few recommendations:
Added to Netflix on December 2, Fauda follows a team of undercover Israeli operatives who work within Palestinian communities to bring down a Hamas terrorist kingpin. As the team integrates into its surroundings, the lines between the Israelis and the Palestinians increasingly blur. Lauded for its realism and sympathetic, humanizing portrayals of Palestinian characters—including terrorists—the show draws on the expertise of its creators, including Haaretz and Times of Israel correspondent Avi Issacharoff. Much of its dialogue is in Arabic. In June, Fauda won Best Drama Series at Israel’s Ophir Awards.
A prominent Jewish-American organization donated funds to help rebuild a Florida mosque severely damaged in an arson attack four months ago by a Jewish suspect and which was occasionally attended by the Orlando nightclub shooter.
The American Jewish Committee (AJC) said on Friday that it presented a donation to Imam Syed Shafeeq Ur Rahman, director of the Islamic Center of Fort Pierce to help with repairs.
“An attack on any house of worship is an affront to all Americans, regardless of their religious affiliation,” said Robert Silverman, AJC Director of Muslim-Jewish Relations. “Burning a mosque is a hate crime condemned by the entire American Jewish community.”
Silverman traveled to Fort Pierce to present the donation and address the Muslim congregation during Friday prayers.
“When Jews were persecuted in Europe during the time of the Inquisition centuries ago, they took shelter in Islamic lands,” he said in his speech. “Welcoming those refugees was an act of kindness that will never be forgotten by the Jewish people. Today, AJC is honored to give back in a small, symbolic way,” Silverman added.
“The perpetrator should be brought to justice as swiftly as possible and to the fullest extent of the law,” Silverman said.
With Japanese planes buzzing overhead, Pvt. Aaron Chabin ran to his post at Pearl Harbor where his commander handed him a loaded gun — and told him to save the last bullet.
“He handed me my weapon, and said ‘Don’t be taken prisoner,’” Chabin, now 94, recalled in a phone interview on Wednesday, the 75th anniversary of the attack that killed 2,400 people and plunged the United States into World War II.
At 7:30 a.m. on Dec. 7, 1941, Chabin was relaxing on his bed in the Schofield Barracks reading the Honolulu Advertiser when the soldiers heard an explosion. Used to a”very casual” atmosphere on a beautiful island, Chabin said they were shocked by the attack, and totally unprepared.
“Someone ran out on the balcony of the barracks, and they said, ‘It’s the Japs!’” he recalled. “And someone else said, ‘Are you crazy?’ I ran out to get my weapon, and I went to my post, which was the communications center.”
Chabin spent the rest of the day relaying phone messages between officers, watching Pearl Harbor go up in smoke and flames. At night, he went to the base to stand guard — something that he hadn’t always had to do. Before that day, no one had expected the base to be attacked. “It was chaos,” he said.
Born to a Jewish family in Detroit that soon moved to New York, Chabin enlisted in the army at 18. It was peacetime and he was hoping for some adventure and maybe a career. Given the choice of being stationed in the continental United States, the Philippines, Panama or Hawaii, he chose Hawaii. One of the soldiers in his barracks was James Jones, who wrote the World War II novel “From Here to Eternity,” set at Schofield Barracks.
Chabin had just completed basic training when the attack happened.
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