The Jewish Dilemma in Europe and Beyond
What with anti-Semitism on both left and right, economic stagnation, and demographic decline, European Jewry faces dim prospects, writes Joel Kotkin:
Perceptions of Jewish success combined with a weak economy and the shrinkage of the middle class have ignited a resurgence of right-wing populism across the continent. In some countries, notably Russia, Poland, Belgium, and parts of Germany, anti-Semitism of the traditional right-wing variety has been mainstreamed, often by nationalist parties such as the AfD in Germany, the Freedom Party in Austria, and Jobbik in Hungary.
This development is most notable in Eastern Europe, where economic conditions are less than ideal. Asked whether “Jews have too much power in the business world,” according to a recent Anti-Defamation League survey, 72 percent of Ukrainians agreed, as did 71 percent of Hungarians, 56 percent of Poles, and 50 percent of Russians. . . . [A] third of Austrians, according to a recent CNN Poll . . . complain Jews have too much influence in finance, as did a quarter of French and German respondents.
Contemporary leftist hatred of Jews has its roots in the post-Stalin alliance with Arab nationalist and Islamist regimes seeking to obliterate Israel. . . . As the famous Nazi-hunters Serge and Beate Klarsfield told me and my wife over two decades ago in Paris, French leftists would see huge potential in appealing to Muslims who now outnumber Jews by roughly ten to one. Although often out of sync with the very liberal social agenda of the European left, Muslims increasingly constitute a powerful constituency for French socialists, who have been losing ground among their traditional white working-class base in recent elections.
Over the long term, if current trends hold, the Jewish future will be essentially that of Israel. . . . Many in these countries may well say “good riddance” to the Jews, but it represents a tragedy not only for the Jewish people but for Europe and the world.
History tells us that anti-Semitism is often just a form of gateway racism, the proverbial “canary in the coal mine of intolerance.” As Ahmed Shaheed, the United Nations special rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief, noted in his recent Human Rights Council report on anti-Semitism: “Anti-Semitism, if left unchecked by governments, poses risks not only to Jews, but also to members of other minority communities. Antis-Semitism is toxic to democracy and mutual respect of citizens and threatens all societies in which it goes unchallenged.”
Until now, the absence of a legal definition of anti-Semitism has been an Achilles’ heel for those who expect colleges and universities to take a stronger stand against campus anti-Semitism. Valid monitoring, informed analysis and investigation, and effective policy-making all require uniform definitions. While there can be no exhaustive definition of anti-Semitism, because it can take many forms, the IHRA definition has been an essential tool for identifying contemporary manifestations of anti-Semitism.
While some object to the idea that the Jewish people fall under Title VI’s rubric of race, color or national origin, such objections are misplaced. First, the OCR has placed Jews, Muslims and other religious groups under Title VI’s jurisdiction since 2004. Second, as any proponent of intersectionality theory should agree, Jewish people can see themselves as a lot of things — a race, nation, religion, ethnicity, culture, etc. Clarifying that for purposes of anti-discrimination provisions is entirely not problematic.
Jewish students need protection; at this writing, more than a half-dozen states are considering similar legislation. As one of the primary drafters of these state bills, I applaud the Trump administration for demonstrating leadership and sending a message that intolerance is unacceptable.
Government officials and institutions have a responsibility to protect citizens from acts of hate and bigotry motivated by discriminatory animus, including anti-Semitism, and must be given the tools to do so. President Trump’s executive order is one such tool, and as such it should be celebrated.
Someone should ask Obama for his response to the consensus judgment by Washington Post, NY Times, CNN et al that his admin’s 2010 guidance on protections under the Civil Rights Act was literally equivalent to the Nuremberg Laws and Soviet purges.
— Seth Mandel (@SethAMandel) December 16, 2019
With no viable deradicalization program in place, we can be reasonably confident that many terrorists being released from prison will leave the same as they entered, or worse. Radical ideology is not changed by a mere stint in prison. Deception is often used to disguise true beliefs.
A clear example of this is recently-released terrorist Kevin James, who was caught posting on social media his current view of non-Muslims. “Getting ready for Jum’ah in the land of dogs and pigs,” he wrote. “May Allah free me from it soon.”
Prosecutors argued that James “has shown he cannot be taken as his word that he will abide by the terms and conditions of his supervised release. … He lies about where he intends to go; he lies when confronted about his conduct; and he lies about the underlying facts that result in his discipline.”
Proven, effective conditions of supervised release are needed to protect us from another violent attack by a released terrorist. We know from the Khan attack that electronic monitoring by itself is insufficient. Khan was wearing a monitoring device when he carried out his attack. He chose a place — a public conference on prison rehabilitation — where he was allowed to be in order to carry out his attack.
Several steps must be taken to contain the threat of terror attacks by released offenders and those radicalized in prison. First, early release of incarcerated terrorists must be discontinued. Second, those who are released when their sentence is completed must be placed under stringent supervision by specifically trained personnel. Monitoring must include not only the ex-offender’s geographical location, but his or her Internet and telecommunications use, especially social media. Finally, a national registry for convicted terrorists is essential for providing local authorities with the information they need to protect their communities.
A similar registry has been effective with released sex offenders, and it will work with released terrorists.
NGO Monitor: HRW Whitewashes Hezbollah, Hamas, and PFLP
Human Rights Watch (HRW) is scheduled to release a publication, “Born Without Civil Rights,” on Tuesday morning, December 17. NGO Monitor obtained an advance copy, and our researchers have read it closely, analyzed its contents, and note the following:
– The main thrust of the publication — that “Israeli authorities also rely on broad provisions of military law to ban associations as ‘hostile organizations’” — is bewildering: HRW’s primary examples are individuals who are members of internationally recognized terrorist organizations and/or groups closely linked to these organizations and who have been convicted of incitement, terror financing, and membership in terrorist organizations. These include Hamas, Hezbollah, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP).
– In order to whitewash these individuals’ involvement in terrorism, HRW misleadingly truncates quotes and withholds vital information. See below for examples.
– Bizarrely, HRW appears to be calling for the de facto annexation of the West Bank by Israel. HRW points to “occupied East Jerusalem” to show that “less restrictive measures are available.” In 1980, Israel annexed areas of Jerusalem that were located beyond the 1949 armistice lines and thus, these areas are now part of Israel and governed by Israeli law. Were Israel to extend its domestic law to the West Bank, as HRW apparently recommends, it would constitute annexation of the territory and the supplanting of Palestinian Authority law, which governs more than 98% of the Palestinian population.
– The “lead researcher and author of this report” is Omar Shakir, the BDS activist, who left Israel on November 25, 2019, following a nearly two-year legal challenge to force the government to extend his work visa. Our detailed research clearly demonstrates that he was spearheading BDS campaigns against Israel; apparently, he was also engaging in unprofessional research, minimizing terrorism and whitewashing terrorists, and recycling false and discriminatory arguments made by other NGOs (such as Amnesty International).
– As with many other HRW campaigns, the publication exposes HRW’s legal creativity. Some of the measures criticized by HRW are required under international law (i.e. UN Security Council Resolution 1701) to combat terrorism. Moreover, and contrary to HRW’s intention, many of the examples discussed in the publication demonstrate the urgent necessity of certain restrictions to prevent violence against civilians and material support for terrorist organizations.
A Guardian article on a new Human Rights Watch report vilifying Israel didn’t even feign objectivity or professionalism. In the 475 word piece by their Middle-East correspondent Michael Safi (“Israeli military law stifles Palestinian rights, watchdog says”, Dec. 17) there isn’t even one sentence quoting someone critical of the report – neither an Israeli official nor NGO Monitor.
The main thrust of the HRW report (based largely on research by long-time BDS activist Omar Shakir) is the claim that Israel relies on broad provisions of military law in order to ban peaceful associations by characterising them as ‘hostile organizations’”.
In fact, NGO Monitor published a response to the charge, refuting the HRW narrative on such ‘peaceful’ groups. They pointed out that “HRW’s primary examples are individuals who are members of terror groups or closely linked to these groups and who’ve been convicted of incitement, terror financing and membership in terror organizations”, such as Hamas, Hezbollah, and the PFLP.
Christine Rosen: This Is Who Linda Sarsour Is
A recent profile in Politico described Bernie rocking out to “Dancing Queen” on the campaign trail in New Hampshire and floating the idea of Elizabeth Warren as his running mate. Another profile in BuzzFeed offered up an empathetic, less shouty Bernie who “believes his presidential campaign can, he says, help people ‘feel less alone.’” Neither piece mentions Linda Sarsour.
Bernie might want to start listening to the voices of those who are paying attention to Sarsour. After reading Sarsour’s feeble non-apology for her remarks at the recent Palestine Conference in Chicago, Tel Aviv-based writer Matthew Schultz observed that Sarsour’s “clarification” of her remarks is in fact yet another “insidious attempt to obfuscate” what she really believes: That a “Zionist Jew has no place on America’s left.”
“Per Sarsour,” Schultz wrote, “we cannot support the rights of refugees. We cannot champion the rights of women. We cannot call ourselves allies to communities of sexual or racial minorities. We also cannot, presumably, champion the plight of Palestinians—unless we first disavow the Jewish state.”
If Bernie wants to reinvent himself as the avuncular socialist grandpa who sweeps Iowa caucus voters off their feet, less raving about corporate greed and more sympathy for people’s everyday problems might work. If he wants to persuade the rest of the country that he’s the progressive change-agent the nation needs, he will be far less successful unless he takes a hard look at the hateful anti-Semitism he’s endorsing by allowing people like Linda Sarsour to speak for him.
Saddam Hussein, who ruled with an iron fist & tortured his own people, is estimated to have killed about half a million people. There is evidence of more than 250 mass graves dating to his rule.
Iraqis have called for his public hanging, while Linda Sarsour had her feelings hurt. pic.twitter.com/qXLExPYPeN
— Claire Voltaire (@Claire_Voltaire) December 16, 2019
Trump’s critics have even less of an argument when it comes to the other supposedly awful thing he said. In speaking of his record on Israel and the way he thinks it needs to influence Jewish voters, Trump said the following:
“We have to get the people of our country, of this country, to love Israel more, I have to tell you that. We have to do it. We have to get them to love Israel more. Because you have Jewish people that are great people – they don’t love Israel enough.”
This is like a previous statement made this past summer in which he questioned why American Jews were not more loyal to Israel and therefore appreciative of his administration. That was assumed by Trump haters to an invocation of the “dual-loyalty” slur against Jews. However, the point of such smears by open anti-Semites such as Reps. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) and Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.), who Trump called out for their anti-Semitism in the speech, is to claim that anyone who supports Israel is not sufficiently American.
What Trump is doing there is the exact opposite. Invoking, though likely unknowingly, the famous statement by Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis that support for Zionism is inextricably linked to love for America, the president was urging all Americans to back Israel. If he thinks that Jews should have a special reason to support the one Jewish state on the planet, he’s right. To claim that to say as much is anti-Semitic turns logic, history and common sense on its head.
In this context, it’s worth repeating journalist Salena Zito’s insight from 2015 when she noted that Trump’s critics take him “literally but not seriously,” while his supporters took him “seriously but not literally.”
That divide still exists. But the perplexing thing about it is that so many people, including those tasked with the defense of the Jewish community like the leader of ADL, seem unable to place his statements in the context of policies that are so clearly aimed at being supportive of the Jewish community, including its fight against anti-Semitism.
The only explanation for this entire debate is not Trump’s actual words, but the political leanings of those who are listening to them. More to the point, as long as the ADL and others who masquerade as defenders of the Jews are making such arguments, unifying the country against actual hate remains pointless.
The Jewish people owes British Jewry a great debt. At a time of growing fear and confusion and even despair about rising anti-Semitism around the world, Jews in Britain offered a powerful model on how to fight back.
Like many Jews, I was riveted to the drama being played out in Britain, where a small Jewish community not previously known for its assertiveness challenged a leader who could have been the next prime minister and a political camp many had considered home. With growing admiration, I followed the op-eds and tweets and video clips from British Jews that exposed and denounced and, most effectively, mocked the Jew-hatred emanating from the left.
A Corbyn-led Britain, Jews understood, would create a public space in which Jewish admission would be conditioned on an ideological loyalty test on Israel. The result would be the end of Jewish self-confidence and of a healthy Jewish life in Britain – perhaps the end of a viable Anglo Jewry.
The Jewish pushback against Corbynism united British Jewry and isolated its far-left extremists, created alliances with prominent non-Jews and helped convince many non-Jewish voters that a prime minister Corbyn would be toxic for the UK precisely because he would be toxic for its Jews.
Whether consciously or not, British Jewry adopted the playbook developed a generation ago by the international protest movement to free Soviet Jewry, the Diaspora’s most successful war against anti-Semitism. For a quarter century, beginning in the 1960s, Jews around the world led a sustained campaign that, astonishingly, lost none of its vitality over the long years of struggle. If anything, the movement only grew in strength, its rallies drawing ever-larger crowds and attracting new supporters from within and without the Jewish community.
Polls conducted on election day itself indicate that it was Corbyn, not Brexit, that was the key reason voters rejected Labour. Of those who didn’t back the party, 43% said the main reason was its leadership, while 17% cited Brexit and 12% Labour’s economic policies. A similar pattern was repeated for those who defected from Labour to other parties.
Anti-Semitism in the party – which is closely tied to the issue of the leadership – appears to have been a major contributor to desertions from Labour. A survey conducted shortly before polling day found that, among those who backed Labour in the 2017 general election but now said that they were “less than certain” to vote for the party, 16% gave anti-Semitism as a reason. Twenty-eight percent said they would have been more likely to vote Labour if Corbyn had handled accusations of anti-Semitism better.
While the Labour vote dropped most in seats that had voted to leave the EU in the 2016 referendum, it actually declined sharply almost everywhere
Moreover, while the Labour vote dropped most in seats that had voted to leave the EU in the 2016 referendum, it actually declined sharply almost everywhere. That is why the party managed to gain just one seat — Putney, a wealthy, pro-EU southwest London constituency — from the Tories.
The notion that Brexit lay at the heart of Labour’s defeat is also undermined by the fact that during the campaign the party had managed to push the National Health Service — traditionally one of its electoral strong-suits — up the political agenda. By polling day, it was level-pegging with Brexit as top of voters’ concerns.
While Chris Williamson may have lost his seat, it isn’t stopping him campaigning. He’s released a video blaming Corbyn’s defeat on a “hostile foreign government“. Can you guess which one?
No prizes for guessing it was Israel. Invokes memories of when the Canary had to downsize after their ad revenue collapsed and blamed it on political Zionists…
He’s still on the loony left-wing circuit with his “Democracy Roadshow“, campaigning to defend Corbynism and “stop the witch-hunt“. He lost his Derby North seat to the Amanda Solloway, a Tory. He lost his deposit. Guido can’t recall any sitting MP ever losing their deposit before…
A cartoonist in Rome has sparked a heated controversy in Italy and abroad after depicting the European Union as the Nazi death camp of Auschwitz and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson as an escaping prisoner.
Artist Mario Improta posted the cartoon on his Twitter account Saturday, after Johnson’s Conservatives won a majority in the UK election. Johnson ran on a platform of “get Brexit done,” vowing to take Britain out of the European Union by the scheduled deadline of January 31.
The cartoon features Johnson waving a British flag as he flees a concentration camp with the inscription “European Union” in the same position as the words “Arbeit macht frei” (“Work sets you free”) are at the entrance of the Nazi camp.
The comparison between the EU and a concentration camp immediately prompted a wave of criticism from politicians, Rome’s Jewish community and even some of the artist’s followers on Twitter.
At what point will @nytimes acknowledge that BDS is not about pressuring Israel to change policy but is all about an antisemitic leadership promoting an end to Israel as a Jewish state? The NYTimes needs to stop treating BDS like a human rights campaign. It isn’t. https://t.co/v24INIsBWH
— HonestReporting (@HonestReporting) December 17, 2019
The controversial filmmaker, Ken Loach, has suggested that Jeremy Corbyn was subjected to a “torrent of abuse” and that regardless of what he did, the “campaign” of antisemitism accusations was “going to run and run”.
Mr Loach made the remarks in an interview on the BBC in the wake of Labour’s election defeat. Asked how he feels about the election result, Mr Loach said that he feels “anger that Jeremy has had a torrent of abuse — every Labour leader is abused but not to this extent. He’s a man of peace who’s been called a ‘terrorist’. He’s…been arrested against racism and been called a ‘racist’. And these things are lies.”
He added that Mr Corbyn faced a torrent abuse that was “off the scale”, and that, regarding antisemitism, “there was a campaign that was going to run and run”. He conceded that “there will be antisemitism in the Labour Party, as there is in other parties and across society,” but said he would defer to the Jews in the Labour Party who say that antisemitism was being “weaponised”, with particular reference to the antisemitism-denial group and sham Jewish representative organisation, Jewish Voice for Labour.
Mr Loach has a history of inflammatory comments on the subject of antisemitism. He described the BBC’s Panorama investigation into Labour antisemitism as “disgusting because it raised the horror of racism against Jews in the most atrocious propagandistic way, with crude journalism…and it bought the propaganda from people who were intent on destroying Corbyn.” he was also reportedly behind a motion passed by Bath Labour Party branding the Panorama programme a “dishonest hatchet job with potentially undemocratic consequences” and asserting that it “disgraced the name of Panorama and exposed the bias endemic within the BBC.” John Ware, the programme’s reporter, is apparently considering legal action against Mr Loach for his comments.
Two successful Conservative election candidates have separately disclosed that they faced antisemitic abuse during their general election campaigns.
Tom Tugenhat, the returned MP for Tonbridge and Malling in Kent and a prominent Tory backbencher, has said that he suffered “very un-Tonbridge” antisemitism during his campaign, lamenting that it had not been “as clean as previous campaigns”. With reference to online abuse, Mr Tugenhat said: “For the first time I faced antisemitism in this campaign, which I found particularly offensive and very surprising in a community like this and frankly rather distasteful. It was very un-Tonbridge, very un-Kent and very un-British.”
Meanwhile, across the country in High Peak in Derbyshire, newly elected MP Robert Largan has revealed that he encountered anti-Jewish sentiment on the campaign trail. In one instance, Labour activists told him that he had sold his soul and pledged his allegiance to Zion. Others asked if he “eats children”. In another instance, a constituent told him that he would not vote for him because “I don’t trust anything to do with the Jews.” Mr Largan commented: “Several people have said on the doorstep, ‘oh, you’re the Jewish guy aren’t you? Someone seems to be going around saying that I’m Jewish. It is bizarre because I’m not even Jewish. But members of the local Labour Party seem to think I am. Perhaps because I come from north Manchester, which has a high Jewish population, and I’ve been very vocal against antisemitism.”
A Palestinian journalist from the Gaza Strip, whose name was recently mentioned as being a Hamas member and supporter of British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn, has denied the claims.
Walid Abu Rouk, 30, who also described himself as a human rights activist, told The Jerusalem Post on Monday that he was never a member of, or affiliated with Hamas. He further denied that he was a supporter of Corbyn.
Abu Rouk confirmed, however, that he had been “invited to be a co-admin on a pro-Corbyn fan page,” saying he was only asked “to post occasional updates about daily life in the Gaza Strip under the blockade.”
Abu Rouk said he used his own name for every post he made and did not hide his identity.
Last week, the Israel-based Tazpit Press Service (TPS) reported that the “We Support Jeremy Corbyn” Facebook page, which has some 72,000 members, is managed from the Gaza Strip.
According to TPS, Hamas officials in both the Gaza Strip and London were working in support of Corbyn’s Labour Party ahead of last week’s UK general election.
Hamas has strongly denied the report, accusing Israeli media of spreading lies. Hamas claimed that it does not meddle in the internal affairs of any country.
TPS claimed that Abu Rouk, a resident of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip who writes for Al Jazeera and the Hamas-affiliated Palestine 24 and Middle East Eye website, was added as a page manager of the pro-Corbyn Facebook account in June 2017. The agency claimed that he “has clear ties to the heart of Hamas’s propaganda efforts.”
Your regular reminder that this guy could have been prime minister of the UK.
Sadly, we have Americans who supported both Corbyn and Chavez who could be U.S. president. https://t.co/m0T7lNTgmc
— Mark Dubowitz (@mdubowitz) December 16, 2019
Acknowledging that they no longer felt unsafe after Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn’s electoral beatdown, 77% of Jews said they are nonetheless planning to leave the UK because they share their neighbors’ view of the dreadful weather.
“I’ve been saying for years that I’m going to leave the UK if that Jew-hater is elected,” one Jewish Londoner told The Mideast Beast. “But really that was just more of an excuse. I’ve just had it with the rain, the fog, and living on one of the only islands without sun. I know France is problematic for us, but they do have this thing called ‘summer’.”
Another interviewee said Corbyn’s rise to Labour leadership led him to consider leaving England to move to Israel. He spent countless hours reading about the weather, food, and beaches in Israel, however, and decided Boris Johnson’s re-election shouldn’t stand in the way of fulfilling his dream.
“Listen, I’m glad I don’t have to worry that Jeremy will put me in a concentration camp, but have you seen the girls in Manchester? Pale as a ghost, and they all look like your sister,” he explained. “And then I saw pictures of the girls in Tel Aviv, decision was a no-brainer.”
Now he should just fork off https://t.co/5CPSr8Vkus
— (((David Lange))) (@Israellycool) December 17, 2019
Due to the lack of public information regarding the institute’s funding and activities, Im Tirtzu’s Legal Division filed a request under the Freedom of Information Law to Bezalel Academy asking for the relevant information.
Bezalel replied that despite issuing official publications marking the launch of the institute, there has not yet been a final decision to establish it, rather only to conduct research on the study of Arab culture in the visual arts, design and architecture.
Bezalel Academy divulged that for this “research” it received 50,000 NIS from the Israeli government-sponsored “President’s Fund,” 150,000 NIS from the Israeli government-funded national lottery, and 10,000 euros from the controversial German Rosa Luxemburg Foundation that funds a wide array of far-left NGOs in Israel.
Shortly after Im Tirtzu’s request, the institute’s Facebook page was taken down. It is unclear why it was removed.
“Once again, we are seeing how taxpayer funds are being used to fuel anti-Zionism in Israeli academia,” said Im Tirtzu CEO Matan Peleg.
“Israeli academia has become an incubator for anti-Zionist and post-Zionist ideas,” continued Peleg, “and the time has come for the universities to take responsibility and end this academic groupthink that has resulted from academics hiring only those who they agree with.”
Peleg added: “There is no room in Israeli academia, especially in a prestigious institution like Bezalel, for ‘research’ that promotes the same ideas of ‘struggle’ and ‘resistance’ used by Hamas and Hezbollah.”
With antisemitism on the rise in the United States and across the world, a new report has just been released that seeks to highlight how the delegitimization campaign against Israel is fueling such incidents.
“The New Anti-Semites: The Radicalization Mechanism of the BDS Movement and the Delegimitization Campaign Against Israel” seeks to expose “the BDS faux ‘civil rights’ movement for what it is—a delegitimization campaign with genocidal aims, rather than the human-rights movement that it purports to be.”
Liora Rez, executive director of StopAntiSemitism.org, told JNS that the report serves to highlight the fact that the delegitimization of Israel is, in actuality, antisemitism.
“Our landmark report brings to light powerful evidence that the delegitimization campaign against Israel is promoting Jew-hatred and uses classic antisemitic tropes, language and imagery,” she said. “For far too long, BDS has been able to masquerade as a social-justice movement in America, while spreading vile Jew-hatred, and inciting hate and violence. By exposing the history, methods and networks of the new antisemites, we are empowering the American people to effectively combat it.”
The 120-page report, which was endorsed by 23 Jewish and Christian American NGOS, comes just days after US President Donald Trump signed an executive order to combat antisemitism on American college campuses that clarified the definition of antisemitism to address the growing hate stemming from BDS.
An anti-Zionist student group at the University of California, Berkeley is facing criticism for displaying photos of Palestinian women who were involved in hijackings and bombing attacks.
In a social media post on Friday, Milton Zerman — a senior at UC Berkeley and senator in its student government, the Associated Students of the University of California (ASUC) — said Bears for Palestine “put up a shrine in their ASUC-sponsored Eshleman Hall cubicle glorifying the actions of violent Palestinian terrorists who killed innocent Jewish people (in one case two Jewish college students).”
Zerman’s post included a photo of the display in question, which featured images of Palestinian women including Fatima Bernawi, Rasmea Odeh and Leila Khaled — the latter wielding an AK-47 assault rifle.
Bernawi has been lionized for reportedly being the first Palestinian woman to organize an attack in Israel. She placed a bomb in a Jerusalem cinema in 1967, over objections to the film it was screening.
Odeh, in turn, was convicted in a trial overseen by an International Red Cross observer of helping murder university students Leon Kanner and Eddie Joffe in a 1969 supermarket bombing in Jerusalem. She was deported from the US to Jordan in 2017 after lying on her immigration forms.
A Students for Justice in Palestine chapter is open for business on the Fordham University campus after a Manhattan judge ruled the Catholic college must recognize the club.
The university appealed the August Manhattan Supreme Court decision.
“Fordham University is committed to serving all of its students both in and out of the classroom: the University does not believe that a chapter of SJP is in the best interests of its students,” said school spokesman Bob Howe.
The Fordham-SJP fight began in 2017, when the club sued for formal recognition, which comes with potential funding by the student government and space on campus.
“I cannot support an organization whole sole purpose is advocating political goals of a specific group, and against a specific country, when these goals clearly conflict with and run contrary to the mission and values of the University,” Dean Keith Eldredge said at the time, according to the lawsuit.
SJP has a long history of divisive rhetoric around the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Critics say the group frequently traffics in open anti-Semitism — including support for Boycott Divestment and Sanctions campaign on college campuses around the country.
The group is notorious for distributing “anti-Israel propaganda” and “regularly demonizes Jewish students who identify as Zionists or proud supporters of the State of Israel,” according to the Anti Defamation League.
— (((David Lange))) (@Israellycool) December 17, 2019
As online hate speech continues to become even an even more important issue, calls for social media platforms to control and ban hateful content become more frequent, as do cries to protect free speech. As such, platforms must determine whether something actually qualifies as hate speech, with some allegedly objectionable content being protected as non-offensive free speech.
This seems to be what happened on Facebook, when an antisemitic meme uploaded to the site wasn’t removed despite being reported.
The meme, uploaded on December 15 to the Facebook page Liberty Memes 777, depicts signs thumbtacked to a board reading “Media,” “Pornography,” “Hollywood,” “The 1%,” “Government” and “Banking,” with a line of cloth connecting each sign, forming the shape of a Star of David, while a man looks at it suspiciously and asks “How are they all connected?”
The comments on the article mostly consisted of memes, ranging from images of a dog defecating dislikes to a GIF of Sheldon Cooper from the TV series The Big Bang Theory saying “It’s funny because it’s true.”
A Twitter user named Jon B. reported the meme, but was told by Facebook in a reply that their moderators determined that it didn’t violate their Community Standards and wasn’t considered hate speech.
“So nice to see that Facebook tolerates #AntiSemitic postings as ‘not against community standards,'” he tweeted.
StandWithUs has vowed that it will not be silenced after seven of its Facebook pages, including its main English page, was hacked.
The pages hit included their main English page, Arabic page, Spanish page and their pages in Holland, Brazil and the UK.
The organization is a non-profit, international, pro-Israel organization, which supports Israel and fights antisemitism through education.
According to StandWithUs Israel’s executive director Michael Dickson, the pages have been down for the last 14 hours.
Dickson told The Jerusalem Post that they are “constantly vigilant because we know we are a source of potential attack.
Interestingly – but predictably – the words ‘occupation’ and ‘occupied’ do not appear anywhere in this report. As has been the case in past BBC reporting, there is no reference in the report to “illegal settlements” or “international law” despite the fact that it was Turkish state policy to facilitate and encourage the immigration of Turkish nationals to Cyrpus during the latter half of the 1970s.
In contrast to BBC coverage of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, readers do not find any pronouncements allocating disputed territory to one side or the other in the style of the frequently employed terminology “occupied Palestinian land” and “Palestinian territory” and no mention is made of the presence of Turkish troops in northern Cyprus. Moreover, the previous BBC policy of describing northern Cyprus as being ‘controlled’ by Turkey appears to have been abandoned.
Readers are told that:
“The Republic of Cyprus, Greece and Israel are also exploring for gas.
In July [sic] a new “East Mediterranean Gas Forum” (EMGF) was launched by those three countries, plus Egypt, Jordan, Italy and the Palestinian Authority. However, Turkey was excluded.”
The EMGF was actually established in January 2019.
The State Department is offering a $1 million grant to combat European antisemitism.
The announcement Friday followed days after the Trump administration sparked controversy in the Jewish community with a controversial executive order protecting Jewish college students.
The State Department said it was accepting applications for the funds, which are intended for a single program that would focus on “counter[ing] the rise of antisemitism in Europe as manifested through hate crimes such as acts of physical violence, desecration of religious community sites and religion-based discrimination.”
The tender said the program activities could include the provision of “training and resources to law enforcement” on issues such as hate crimes laws and “victim support,” “monitoring implementation of local and national laws” and “engaging in strategic litigation to set case law precedent.”
Police in Beverly Hills have released a description of a suspect in the vandalism of a local synagogue, saying they are looking for a white man in his lower 20s with dark curly hair and glasses.
CNN reported that the man carried a backpack and a suitcase while he committed the crime. He was caught on a security camera outside the southern California synagogue.
The vandalization of the Nessah Synagogue in Beverly Hills, the primary house of worship for local Jews of Persian ancestry, was discovered on Saturday.
Police said, “The suspect disrupted the furnishings, and contents of the synagogue by overturning furniture and distributing brochures and materials throughout the interior.”
Although several religious objects were damaged, the “main scrolls survived unscathed.”
Beverly Hills Mayor John Mirisch said, “This cowardly attack hits at the heart of who we are as a community. It is not just an attack on the Jewish Community of Beverly Hills; it’s an attack on all of us. The entire city stands in solidarity behind Nessah, its members and congregants.”
“We are committed to catching the criminal who desecrated a holy place on Shabbat of all days and bringing him to justice,” he added. “We are equally committed that our city will continue to be a welcoming place for Jews and for members of all religions and groups.”
The Airbnb property rental company announced on Friday that it had removed over 60 accounts belonging to members of a white supremacist online forum.
The move came over a month after the identities of hundreds of Iron March users were leaked onto the internet.
“Anyone sympathetic to neo-Nazi ideology and violent extremism has absolutely no place on Airbnb, and our community is a better place without them,” an Airbnb spokesman said in a statement.
Online from 2011 until it mysteriously went down in 2017, Iron March was a forum that allowed neo-Nazis to connect with other like-minded people from around the world. It had even been linked to a number of terror attacks that targeted Western countries.
“This was a no-brainer — when we see people on our platform pursuing behavior antithetical to our Community Commitment, we take action to prioritize the safety of our community,” the spokesman continued. “Through our trust and safety systems, we are continuously seeking to proactively identify those who could put our hosts and guests at risk.”
Hundreds of Jewish revelers danced down what was once known as “Adolf Hitler Street” in Freiburg im Breisgau in Germany this week as they welcomed a Torah scroll into their community.
“Today we proved that no matter what happens to the Jewish nation, we blossom and we are alive,” said Rabbi Yakov Gitler of the Chabad community in the city in southern Germany.
The road, once named for the Nazi dictator, was closed to traffic Sunday as hundreds of people danced and sang, carrying the sacred scroll.
According to Chabad, the scroll had been taken around Israel to families of terror victims, who wrote a letter in the Torah. The final letters were inscribed when it reached the Chabad center in the city.
The Jewish community of Freiburg dates back to the Middle Ages, but was largely destroyed during World War II. The community was reestablished in the 1950s, and in 1985 the city funded the construction of a new synagogue.
Today, more than 2,000 Jews live in the city.
Between its sandy beaches and vast array of culinary delights, Tel Avivians already know that they live in one of the best cities in the world. Now though, it seems that what was once the best-kept secret in the Middle East has transformed into a mainstream holiday destination.
In fact, late last week Forbes named Israel’s White City as the second hottest destination to visit in the world. Tel Aviv follows Sin City in Forbes’ list and is described as “ancient history” meets “modern living … along Israel’s Mediterranean coast.” It gave a shoutout to Jaffa’s Setai hotel, a luxury hotel renovated from an Ottoman Empire Police station for those really looking for the old-meets-new experience that the city embodies.
The article also cited Tel Aviv’s unique Bauhaus architecture, which is recognized by UNESCO as a reason to visit.
Yuval Rotem, Director-General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, welcomed Forbes’ praise for the city, saying: “We invite everyone to visit this incredible city and our beautiful country this coming year!”
Jerusalem City Council member Dan Illouz (Hitorerut) on Tuesday officially nominated former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper (2006-2015) for the honor of having a Jerusalem street named after him.
Though tradition dictates that the honor be reserved for individuals who have been dead for at least three years, exceptions may be made—and “Harper is a strong case for such an exception,” Illouz told JNS. “Throughout his time in office, he was, and continues to be today, a devoted friend of Israel,” he said.
Harper was the first Western leader to suspend aid to the Palestinian Authority after Hamas’s electoral victory in 2006. In 2009, he was the first to withdraw from the infamous Durban Review Conference, saying the event would “scapegoat the Jewish people.” In a 2014 Knesset speech, Harper committed to support Israel “through fire and water.” He is also known for changing Canada’s voting record in the United Nations in support of the Jewish state, ending funding to UNRWA, opposing Iran’s nuclear program, promoting investment in Israeli security and intelligence and modernizing trade agreements between Israel and Canada to increase trade and business connections.
“It is in recognition of this significant support that I seek to honor Harper with a street name in the capital city. Doing so during Harper’s lifetime would show the world how Israel treats its friends, which would be a big step for diplomatic relations,” said Illouz.
Mel Brooks’ new HBO special is a departure from the comedian’s typical belly-laugh fare. In place of the slapstick gallows humor — though there’s plenty of that, too, in “Mel Brooks Unwrapped” — is a more introspective, documentary-style reminiscence of his nearly 60-year career.
“You got it right on the nose,” Brooks says in a phone interview from Hollywood. “It is kind of a walk through my life, a memoir. Some of it is funny, and some of it is moving and touching. It’s a very different kind of behind-the-camera look at me.”
Now 93, could it be that his advancing age accounts for the change of tone?
“It probably does,” he says, adding quickly, “But I’m not as old as Carl Reiner.”
Originally a BBC production, “Mel Brooks Unwrapped” is the work of Alan Yentob, the British network’s former creative director. The pair have developed a warm rapport through several previous interviews over the decades, clips of which are interwoven into the new production.
Israel lifted the cup in the 10th edition of Admiral’s Cup Sailing Regatta, which concluded on Friday at the Ettikulam Beach, which is part of Indian Naval Academy (INA), at Ezhimala in the district.
Team Israel was represented by Midshipman Itai Mordachi Schroit and Midshipman Ido Mazor, who stood first and third respectively in the individual position in the men’s category. Team USA represented by Midshipman D Gray Benson and Midshipman Kelly Milliken came second while Singapore, represented by 2nd Lt Koh Yi Qian and 2nd Lt Dillon How, came third. In the individual position in the men’s category, Cadet Gorkunov Petr from Russia came second.
Midshipman Kelly Milliken from USA stood first in the individual position in women’s category followed by Midshipman Annabel Charlotte Vose of the UK and Midshipman Paula Kaminska from Poland at second and third positions respectively.
INA commandant Vice Admiral Dinesh K Tripathi, who was the chief guest for the closing ceremony, presented the trophies and individual prizes.
Thank you to our friend & ally #India for hosting the Israeli Navy in India’s 10th annual International Admiral’s Cup sailing regatta!
Israel’s sailors brought home 1st place🏆in the competition.
— Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) December 17, 2019
MILAN: Thousands march to show solidarity for Holocaust Survivor.
Liliana Segre, an 89 year-old Holocaust survivor received a hundreds of anti-Semitic threats due to her efforts educate the world and unite against hate.
Liliana was deported to Auschwitz when she was 13. pic.twitter.com/eY4dK3Jaef
— Hananya Naftali (@HananyaNaftali) December 14, 2019
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