July 7, 2020

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12/22 Links: New ICC ruling reveals organization’s true anti-Semitic intentions; Amnesty International- from bias to obsession; Podhoretz: The Reverse Blood Libel; Save Me from My Defenders!

http://elderofziyon.blogspot.com/2019/12/1222-links-new-icc-ruling-reveals.html

From Ian:


New ICC ruling reveals organization’s true anti-Semitic intentions
Because between the “war crimes” under investigation by chief ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda and the request of a country that doesn’t exist, “Palestine,” are the Jewish communities beyond the Green Line and Israel’s self-defense in Operation Protective Edge – versus the persistent attempts to invade Israel’s sovereign territory from Gaza under the guise of “March of Return” border protests. In other words: Jewish settlement in all parts of the Land of Israel, which are not at all occupied territories according to actual international law, is a “war crime.” Also a war crime, apparently, is preventing “Palestinian refugees” from invading Israel’s sovereign territory from an area that Israel willingly transferred to Palestinian control.

This is not, therefore, a legal measure to bring any Israeli “war criminals” to justice, but the exploitation of the international judicial system to implement the diplomatic goal of destroying the State of Israel. According to the international definition of anti-Semitism, this amounts to pure anti-Semitism because it entails the denial of the Jewish people’s right to self-determination and employs double standards against Israel.

Bensouda willingly ensnared herself in the web spun by the “Palestinians” around the international judicial system for the purpose of creating their own international law, to incriminate Israel and put it on the same footing with the Nazis. Thus, from their perspective, they can kill two birds with one stone: The Jews would no longer be perceived as victims of history, and another precedent will have been set in their war to delegitimize the existence of the Jewish state. It now remains to be seen whether the ICC’s judges fall into this trap and further throw their own court’s legitimacy into question by turning it into yet another absurd circus show – ala UNESCO, UNRWA, and the UN Human Rights Council.

Bensouda, who has struggled mightily to launch war crimes and crimes against humanity investigations in the most clear-cut of cases (such as Venezuela or Ukraine), has filed a request with judges to decide whether the ICC has jurisdiction in Judea and Samaria, east Jerusalem, and Gaza. Israel – similar to the United States and Russia – declared long ago that it has no intention of ratifying the tribunal’s inaugural convention. Therefore the ICC has no authority to discuss Israel’s affairs, unless crimes were committed against a country that is a signatory to the ICC convention (among its neighbors, only Jordan falls in this category), and unless it is proven that the Israeli justice system is incapable of properly trying suspected war criminals.

The judges at The Hague, therefore, must determine whether “Palestine” is a country at all, the status of the “territories,” and whether the Israeli judicial system is functioning properly or not. Tackling these matters is akin to wading into a minefield, which could threaten the very viability of the International Criminal Court.

Netanyahu on war crimes probe: ICC has become a ‘weapon’ against Israel

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday tore into the International Criminal Court for saying there were grounds to investigate alleged Israeli and Palestinian war crimes, calling it an “absurd” decision that showed the court was being weaponized against Israel.

“As we’re moving forward to new places of hope and peace with our Arab neighbors, the International Criminal Court in The Hague is going backwards. On Friday it finally became a weapon in the political war against Israel,” Netanyahu said at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem.

Netanyahu said the prosecutor’s decision contained three “absurdities,” the first of which was going against the court’s founding principles.

“The ICC was established after the horrors of World War II, in particular the terrible horrors done to our people, and it is meant to deal with problems that states bring up against war criminals, such as genocide or mass deportation,” he said.
Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda in the courtroom of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague, Netherlands, August 28, 2018. (Bas Czerwinski/Pool via AP)

Second, taking aim at the court’s scrutiny of West Bank settlements, Netanyahu argued that the decision went against “historical truth” of Jewish rights in the historic land of Israel.

“It is acting against the right of Jews to settle in the homeland of the Jews. To turn the fact that Jews are living in their land into a war crime — it is hard for there to be a greater absurdity than this,” he said.

Finally, Netanyahu said the ICC was ignoring the “present truth,” lashing it for not instead pursuing probes of Iran or Syria.

“This is terrible hypocrisy,” he said. “We’ll fight for our rights and our historical truths with all tools at our disposal.”

He also said the US was “fighting these distortions, this lack of justice and this lie,” without elaborating.

Aaron Klein: ICC Decision to Probe Israel for ‘War Crimes’ Is Pure Antisemitism

The inexcusable decision by the International Criminal Court’s chief prosecutor to proceed with a probe into Israeli “war crimes” can only be explained as being motivated by raw antisemitism.

How else to fathom the ICC’s singling out of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), which goes further than any other military in the world to protect civilians in the battlefield.

The IDF operates in a complex theater in which Palestinian terrorists use civilians as human shields, deliberately house their terrorist infrastructures in densely populated civilian areas and indiscriminately fire projectiles into Jewish civilian population zones.

Still, the IDF goes to extreme lengths to ensure the protection of Palestinian civilians even though terrorists intentionally surround themselves with civilians to thwart Israeli operations because they know that Israel is a beacon of morality.

The Israeli military regularly warns civilians of incoming attacks with phone calls and text messages. It employs “roof knocking” — or firing warning shots before any aerial bombing – thus providing Palestinian terrorists with advance warning of incoming attacks. If civilians in the vicinity still don’t evacuate, the Israeli army often makes announcements on loudspeakers. The IDF has called off scores of military raids because civilians were in the way.

Making a mockery of justice, ICC chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda announced on Friday that she was “satisfied that there is a reasonable basis to proceed with an investigation into the situation in Palestine.” Bensouda ignores that Palestine, of course, is not an existing state.

Superficial and one-sided BBC reporting on ICC statement

Despite having previously acknowledged in 2015 that “the date chosen by the Palestinians as the starting point for the ICC to investigate requires explanation as it is clearly not arbitrary”, this report makes no effort to inform audiences why the ‘start date’ of June 13th 2014 – which deliberately excludes the abductions and murders of three Israeli civilians by members of a Hamas terror cell – was selected by the Palestinians.

The BBC’s report promotes reactions from the Palestinian Authority and a political NGO also engaged in lawfare against Israel.

“In a statement, the Palestinian Authority said: “Palestine welcomes this step as a long overdue step to move the process forward towards an investigation, after nearly five long and difficult years of preliminary examination.”

Reacting to the ICC decision, B’Tselem, an Israeli human rights group, said: “Israel’s legal acrobatics in an attempt to whitewash its crimes must not be allowed to stop international legal efforts to, at long last, hold it to account.””

It closes with promotion of the BBC’s standard but partial mantra concerning ‘international law’.

“There are some 140 Israeli settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, which most of the international community consider illegal under international law. Israel disputes this, and last month the US reversed its position and declared it no longer considered the settlements invalid.”

At the bottom of the article readers are told that they “may also find interesting” an embedded video dating from August 2019 which features as one of its main interviewees the director of another political NGO – Addameer – which is linked to a Palestinian terrorist organisation.

Although the BBC acknowledged years ago that the Palestinian decision to join the ICC and pursue this suit is part of what it has described as “a new strategy to put pressure on Israel“, that information is completely absent from this latest report.

David Collier: When all of the evidence is collected together, it is as if Amnesty has declared war on Israel

Israel is not the only victim of Amnesty bias, although it is by far the most frequently attacked. There is a clear political world vision that comes to light. Amnesty rarely criticise nations such as Pakistan but often attack India. They are quick to jump on persecution of Muslims throughout the world but leave persecuted Christians to suffer in silence.

Then there is BDS, the boycott Israel movement. Dozens of Amnesty’s people push out pro BDS messages, even if Amnesty refuses officially to endorse it. In fact, three of Amnesty’s most recent campaigns against Israel, align perfectly with the three central BDS aims, in a manner that suggests co-ordination rather than coincidence.

If Amnesty has a recruitment policy that employs hardcore BDS activists, it is no surprise that Amnesty has been gradually sliding towards campaigns that seek to bolster the boycott movement.

But this isn’t just about bias. In areas of sectarian violence, Amnesty is enabling activists to dress up as ‘human rights defenders’. This can actually place the lives of genuine human rights activists at risk. And if they are obsessing all the time about Israel, how many persecuted people in the world are being ignored?

Amnesty International must take urgent action. It must assess the impact of the bias highlighted in this report and should conduct an external independent audit of its activity, processes, allocation of resources and recruitment policy.

It is clear that some of Amnesty’s information on Israel is tainted. It has come from sources that publicly support terrorist groups and openly suggest that information damaging to the cause should be withheld. It is reasonable to conclude that Amnesty should roll back their campaigns until they can separate truth from fiction.

Amnesty once won the Nobel Peace Prize. It was a bastion of hope and ethical conduct. How the mighty have fallen.

David Collier: Amnesty International- from bias to obsession – the report

My report into Amnesty International is now published and the 200-page analysis is available as a PDF for download. This research was some of the most challenging I have undertaken. I linked to dozens of Amnesty social media accounts and monitored the output of over 40 staff / volunteers. Many of the case studies concern people who are (or were) instrumental in directing Amnesty’s focus. The research took several months and hundreds of thousands of social media posts were logged. The project was commissioned by Jewish Human Rights Watch

Amnesty International bias
Most people know that Amnesty International is biased to some degree, but even knowing this, I was still shocked at what I found.

There are clear political and discriminatory influences at work at Amnesty. Targets are not chosen for their actions but rather for their identity. A controversial action by India is almost certain to receive attention. Persecuted Christians are blatantly ignored. Attacking Israel is top of the list. Pakistan can literally make opposition figures disappear and Amnesty International can rarely even be bothered to yawn.

Every part of Amnesty’s arsenal spends a disproportionate amount of time attacking Israel. When fused together in a coordinated manner, the focus appears obsessive and persecutory. Campaigns against Israel are visibly better funded, more frequent and promoted with far more energy – than anything else Amnesty International undertakes. More worrying still is the alignment between Amnesty’s anti-Israel campaigns and the aims of the BDS movement, which leave little room for doubt that it is coordinated rather than coincidental. This claim will not surprise you once you have read the sections on their recruitment policy and their campaigns.

John Podhoretz: The Reverse Blood Libel

The same day two monsters murdered three people in cold blood in a Jersey City kosher supermarket—next door to a yeshiva housing 50 defenseless children, which was apparently the original target—the Trump administration announced it would extend anti-discrimination protections under the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to American Jews. The juxtaposition is important, because one was an unspeakable act of anti-Semitic evil and the other an act of philo-Semitic friendship. And yet listen to the executive director of the Central Conference of American Rabbis speaking about this: “I’ve heard people say this feels like the first step toward us wearing yellow stars.”

Yeah, so have I. But you know, every day I hear people say stupid, factitious, wrong-headed, historically demented, and slanderous things. I read Twitter. And, for my sins, I am compelled to read the New York Times, which is where I came across that quote from Rabbi Hara Person. In my view, part of the responsibility of leadership in a community is standing strong against those within who peddle vile, ignorant, weirdly self-justifying and self-infatuated argle-bargle. But of course, Rabbi Hara Person of the Central Conference of American Rabbis didn’t just “hear” people say these things. She clearly shares a belief in this awful, unspeakable, vile calumny—the slander that a president who agreed to a change in policy to aid American Jews on college campuses in their efforts to advocate for the Jewish state is an anti-Semite.

This is the blood libel in reverse—a false accusation of a crime against Jews leveled at someone who has not only committed no such crime but has extended his hand in friendship and commonality to us. You are free to dislike Trump for many reasons, and most American Jews appear to do so. But if you choose to imagine his support for Israel and his public acknowledgment of the hostility Jewish advocates for Israel face on college campuses are the acts of a neo-Nazi, you are not only committing a category error but a sin against the truth.

Ruth R. Wisse: Save Me from My Defenders!

Unlike racial prejudice, which is straightforward, anti-Semitism works through inversion: It holds Jews responsible for the aggression against them. Among the general framing questions of the conference—which included “What is racism?” “Is anti-Semitism a form of racism?” and “Is equality possible in a world where prejudice exists?”—there was only one with built-in bias: “Is it anti-Semitism to criticize the state of Israel?” The question is fraudulent because Israel is not being “criticized” but blamed for the Arab-engineered plight of the Palestinians. Arab countries covering more land than the United States deny Jews their single homeland and blame Jews for denying Arabs theirs. Anti-Semitism is about its owners, not its foils. The conference ought to have asked whether Arab and Muslim leaders could ever accept the principle of coexistence.

That others repeat some of the same mistaken language of the conference merely proves that bad ideas drive out the good—to the very depths of evil. The war against the Jewish state is not a generic cause like climate change, or women’s right to abortion, or part of a general attempt to impose political correctness on matters of gender, race, and class. It is a genocidal assault against a particular people. Blaming Israel for Arab plight is an article of theological and political faith to much of the Arab and Muslim world. Rather than educate to reform and ameliorate that misdirected political charge, universities have welcomed it as just another point of view. Schools that forbid other forms of hatred and pass speech codes monitoring slights to all other minorities are only too happy to allow all those other repressed forms of antagonism to emerge in this acceptable form. They know that unlike other threatening groups, Jews—and Jewish professors—are more likely to join their accusers. Who needs anti-Semitism? The grievance brigades and their liberal college protectors.

As for the revelation that most of Bard’s SJP are themselves Jewish, there has always been a correlation between the level of anti-Jewish hostility and the number of Jews who defect or join their antagonists. Whereas many groups typically threaten others, Jews under attack often turn against their own. Anti-Semitism in Europe generated thousands of converts to Christianity and an even larger number of socialists and Communists, some of whom used their claims of political supersession to attack their fellow Jews. The growth of anti-Zionist Jews in America and of Jews who ascribe to anti-Jewish causes is the most reliable measure of how successfully the war against the Jews is currently being waged. In a grotesque cycle of causality, Jewish habits of accommodation inspire the anti-Jewish politics that then destroy Jewish moral self-confidence. Jewish apologists in Eastern Europe were called mayofes yidn for the song their Polish overlords made them perform for their amusement; today’s mayofes choirs sing out on every major American campus.

I am grateful for the protection given and the courtesy shown by members of the Bard faculty and administration, but it is intolerable that my security should come at the expense of the infinitely more endangered people of Israel. And not only Israel. No one can say “we did not know” what anti-Israel forces intend because anyone with access to a computer or library can locate the platforms and sponsors of groups such as BDS National Committee, National Students for Justice in Palestine, Electronic Intifada, Palestine Right to Return Coalition, and their ties with neo-Nazi movements in Germany, all of which aim to take down Israel and the civilization it represents. We know the attraction, especially to academics and would-be intellectuals, of inversions like “Zionism-racism” and the harm they intend. Free speech comes with the responsibility to crush the criminality that spreads under its protection.

Ben Shapiro harassed by Holocaust denier as he is out with his pregnant wife and children

Why did he target Shapiro?

Fuentes and his followers have a history of targeting mainstream conservative thought leaders. The “groypers” have spent several months trying to disrupt events throughout the country featuring conservative speakers, such as Shapiro, Jonah Goldberg, and Charlie Kirk, among others.

In early November, Shapiro delivered a widely-acclaimed speech at Stanford University where he denounced both the far left and the Alt-Right. During his remarks, Shapiro detailed how neo-Nazis and Alt-Right personalities like Fuentes try to associate themselves with President Trump to legitimize their movement, and help the left politically in the process.

“First, you declare your allegiance to President Trump, and declare that you aren’t really Alt-Right, even though you obviously are,” he said, according to the Daily Wire. “You show up to lectures wearing a MAGA hat in order to get the media to cover it – and in order to demonstrate that you’re truly a representative of the 63 million Americans who voted for Trump.”

“You call yourself ‘America First,’ hijacking Trump’s slogan, but twisting it to mean ‘white Americans first,” Shapiro said in a reference to Fuentes whose program is called “America First.” The author of “The Right Side of History” added that mainstream news outlets “eat it up” because they “love nothing better than suggesting that Trump is a white supremacist, despite the fact that he has repeatedly condemned white supremacism.”

Elle Magazine Promotes Linda Sarsour as “Woman to Watch”

CAMERA has written before about anti-Israel activist Linda Sarsour’s antisemitism as well as about one particularly hateful comment about other women that she’s refused to disavow. Yet, Elle magazine is now giving her a place of honor in its feature, “20 Women Of Color In Politics To Watch In 2020,” a list of what it claims are “the women in politics you’ll need to know next year.”

The list was originally published on December 17. On Friday, Elle appended an Editor’s Note, attempting to distance itself from the list by claiming:
The below list was compiled by She the People, a national non profit network of women of color committed to social justice and voter mobilization. A previous version of this story did not make clear that the list was compiled by She the People and not ELLE magazine.

Yet, it was Elle that made the decision to publish this list on its platform, without considering the past positions and public statements of the women included. The list claims that Sarsour is “guided by a radical love.” It makes no mention of the fact that Sarsour is a vocal proponent of the BDS movement, a movement that is based in hatred, and which seeks to eliminate the existence of Israel as a Jewish state. She’s also been criticized for her association with Louis Farrakhan. Most recently, she came under fire for saying at a conference that Israel “is built on the idea that Jews are supreme to everyone else.” All of which makes one wonder, what, specifically, does Elle think makes Sarsour a “woman to watch”?

Elle describes itself as “the world’s largest fashion magazine and media brand inspiring women to explore and celebrate style in all aspects of their lives with content that is inclusive and innovative. The quality of photography and storytelling makes ELLE a trusted authority for consumers and a go-to partner for celebrity, fashion and beauty exclusives.” The magazine claims over a million paid subscribers, nearly five million print readers, and ten million unique visitors to its website.

German Jewish leader says political parties infected with antisemitism

The chairman of the Jewish community in Halle, Germany – where a neo-Nazi attempted to shoot up a synagogue on Yom Kippur – said that all German political parties are infected with Jew-hatred according to a Sunday interview in the Bild paper.

“All parties are infected by the antisemitism virus,“ Max Privorozki, head of the tiny Jewish community in Halle, told Bild in an eye-popping interview, adding “I would not recommend to anyone to walk through Halle wearing a kippa.”

The interview with Privorozki took place ten weeks after the 27-year-old neo-Nazi Stephen Balliet tried to storm the synagogue on Yom Kippur and murder the 51 worshippers inside. After the failed attempt, he killed two non-Jewish Germans near the synagogue. Balliet subscribed to an antisemitic outlook, writing about the “Zionist-occupied government.”

Privorozki told the country’s best-selling paper Bild that if Balliet had succeeded it would have been the largest mass murder of Jews in Germany since the Holocaust.

Since the attack, Privorozki said the Halle authorities assigned an additional police contact person for the community, an increase from one to two. He said the police now protect burials of Jewish members.

Former NDP candidate stripped of human rights award after comparing Israel to Nazi Germany

The Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission has stripped a former NDP candidate of an annual human rights award after comments she made that compared Israel to Nazi Germany.

Rana Zaman stepped down as a candidate for the party in June, roughly a year after posting a string of tweets that suggested Israeli forces were “aiming higher than 6 million” in their bid to wipe out the Palestinian people. “I wonder if #Israel borrowed this from the #Nazis after they saw how successful they were?” she wrote, adding, “#Gaza is the new #Auschwitz.”

The tweet was later deleted but had been captured in a screen shot by Jewish group B’nai Brith Canada.

The commission issued a press release on Friday saying it had “formally rescinded” an award it gave to Zaman. At the time of the award, the release said, its committee “was unaware of public statements made by Ms. Zaman that were directly contrary to the principles of the award.”

A spokesperson for the commission declined to confirm on the record whether the decision to strip the award was tied to Zaman’s tweets. The press release declined to mention which award was actually given to Zama. Earlier press releases that named the award recipients were no longer accessible on the human rights commission’s website. (h/t jzaik)

Palestinian man convicted of selling land to Israeli Jews dies in PA custody

A Palestinian man who was convicted by a Palestinian Authority court of selling land to Israeli Jews died on Sunday in custody, PA Police spokesman Louay Arzeikat said.

The Palestinian man, who was serving a ten-year prison sentence for “illicitly trading lands to the enemy,” died in a hospital in Ramallah after “facing an illness” over the past two weeks, Arzeikat said in a statement, adding that the PA Police and Attorney General’s Office opened an investigation into the matter.

The statement did not provide details on the illness the spokesman said the man was facing and it only referred to him by his initials, M.E.

Arzeikat added that the deceased had been in the PA’s custody since 2012 and was transferred to the hospital on December 14.

Palestinian law considers attempting to sell or selling land to Israeli Jews a punishable offense. According to the law, possible punishments for trying to sell or selling land to Israeli Jews include various degrees of hard labor and imprisonment, as well as execution.

However, the law requires that PA President Mahmoud Abbas approve any death sentence, and he has not signed off on any executions since 2006.

“Silent Night”: Persecuted Palestinian Christians Kept Out of Sight

In short, Palestinian Christians are suffering from the same patterns of persecution — including church attacks, kidnappings and forced conversion — that their coreligionists suffer in other Muslim nations. The difference, however, is that the persecution of Palestinian Christians has “received no coverage in the Palestinian media.”

“The only thing that interests the PA [Palestinian Authority] is that events of this kind not be leaked to the media. Fatah regularly exerts heavy pressure on Christians not to report the acts of violence and vandalism from which they frequently suffer, as such publicity could damage the PA’s image….. Even less does the PA want to be depicted as a radical entity that persecutes religious minorities. That image could have negative repercussions for the massive international, and particularly European, aid the PA receives.” — Dr. Edy Cohen, “The Persecution of Christians in the Palestinian Authority”, Begin-Sadat Center, May 27, 2019.

The bread and butter of the PA and its supporters, particularly in the media, is to portray the Palestinians as victims of unjust aggression and discrimination from Israel. This narrative would be jeopardized if the international community learned that Palestinians are themselves persecuting fellow Palestinians — solely on account of religion.

“The systematic persecution of Christian Arabs living in Palestinian areas is being met with nearly total silence by the international community, human rights activists, the media and NGOs…” — Justus Reid Weiner, attorney, “Palestinian Christians: The plight of believers under Palestinian rule”, International Christian Embassy, Jerusalem.

BDS is failing – the never-ending story (Dec. 2019)

The sweet sweet taste of BDS tears right in your very own mug. Drink it every time Israel receives a billion dollar investment.

Politics
Jeremy Corbyn suffered a historic defeat on Dec. 12th – killing the prospect of a pro-BDS government, including the specific pledge, in Labour’s Manifesto, to ban arms sales to Israel.

Boris Johnson to pass law banning anti-Israel boycott, official says
Boris Johnson will attempt to pass a law banning local councils from joining the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel, the UK’s special envoy for post-Holocaust issues has announced.

Eric Pickles said the movement was “anti-Semitic and should be treated as such” during a speech at the International Institute for Strategic Dialogue’s conference in Jerusalem on Sunday.

He said the new law would not allow public bodies to work with those who boycott, divest from or sanction Israel.

Last month’s Conservative Party manifesto included a pledge to ban local councils from boycotting products from foreign countries.

“We will ban public bodies from imposing their own direct or indirect boycotts, disinvestment or sanctions campaigns against foreign countries,” the manifesto said. “These undermine community cohesion.”

Israel’s arrest of Palestinian terrorist leader highlights ‘extensive overlaps’ between BDS and terror groups
(December 18, 2019 / JNS) The announcement on Wednesday by Israel’s Shin Bet security agency that it has arrested some 50 members of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) capped off a months-long targeting of the terror group for its role in the deadly terror attack on Aug. 23 that killed an Israeli teenager hiking with her father and brother.

Rina Shnerb, 17, died as a result of an explosion near the town of Dolev in Samaria; her brother, Dvir Shnerb, 19, was injured, along with their father, 46-year-old Rabbi Eitan Shnerb. According to Israeli reports, the explosive device included 3 kilograms (6.5 pounds) of explosive material, making it an “unusually powerful bomb.”

The arrests coincidently provide evidence of further links between the PFLP and the BDS movement. Among those arrested by the Shin Bet include Khalida Jarrar, 56, who the Israeli security service noted was the head of the terror group’s operations in the West Bank. Until recently, Jarrar also served as the vice chairperson, director and board member of the BDS organization Addameer.

Haaretz’s Odeh Bisharat Falsely Insists Trump Executive Order Bans All Criticism of Israel

Haaretz contributor Odeh Bisharat doesn’t like President Donald Trump’s new executive order to combat antisemitism in American academic institutions. He’s perfectly entitled to his opinion.

In his Dec. 16 column, Bisharat makes clear his distaste for the order, which calls for consideration of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of antisemitism when identifying evidence of discrimination. The Haaretz writer considers the widely-accepted IHRA definition “an extreme interpretation of anti-Semitism” (“Trump and the West Seek to Put All Jews in the Pre-Occupation Basket“):
Something terrible is brewing in the West, including the United States. Last week President Donald Trump signed an executive order that adopts a broad and controversial definition of anti-Semitism that includes certain types of criticism of Israel…

Bisharat is not entitled, however, to fabricate about the contents of the order, as he does later on in the column when he insists that the definition bars all criticism of Israel, contradicting his initial accurate reference to “certain types of criticism of Israel.” He invents:
These resolutions grant Israel near-total immunity from any criticism… It’s difficult to find a historical precedent for this type of immunity. What other country enjoys, or has ever enjoyed, such a privilege? Only Israel is given this dubious privilege: Don’t touch its precious occupation.

If Bisharat’s assertions are correct, then it would be a total violation of the freedom of speech and academic freedom.

But that is not the case. Fist, the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’ working definition of anti-Semitism does not prohibit criticism of Israel, nor does it grant Israel any special privilege. In fact, it states explicitly:

BBC News again self-conscripts to Banksy’s Israel delegitimisation

Apparently the BBC is quite happy to employ the word “controversial” in relation to the anti-terrorist fence which has dramatically reduced Palestinian acts of violence but does not find it necessary to use the same terminology to describe the hundreds of terror attacks against civilians which brought about its construction.

Readers also find the following:
“Hotel manager Wissam Salsaa said Banksy had used the Christmas story to show how Palestinians in the West Bank were living.

“It is a great way to bring up the story of Bethlehem, the Christmas story, in a different way – to make people think more,” he said. […]

“Banksy is trying to be a voice for those that cannot speak,” Mr Salsaa added.”

There is of course nothing at all “different” about this latest exploitation of the nativity story for political ends – as the BBC obviously knows full well seeing as two years ago it collaborated with precisely such an initiative. And clearly the notion that the Palestinian people “cannot speak” is ridiculous given the amount of airtime and column space devoted to their views by the Western media- including the BBC.

This latest Christmas exploiting self-conscription to a long-running PR campaign promoting anonymous agitprop intended solely to delegitimise Israel continues to further erode the BBC’s claim of ‘impartiality’.

Arsonist attacks Yeshiva University dorms, not considered hate crime

A 33-year-old man lit three fires in a Yeshiva University dormitory on Friday using matches intended for a Hanukkah menorah, according to The New York Times. Students were sleeping in the building when the fires were lit.

Security footage of the incident shows the man smashing the glass door at the entrance to the building, crawling into the lobby, picking up and putting back the receiver of a phone at a desk and then disappearing down a hall.

Nobody was injured in the incident and firefighters quickly extinguished the fires, according to fire officials.

Peter Weyand was arrested after the incident and charged with arson, burglary with criminal intent, reckless endangerment of property, criminal mischief, criminal trespass and aggravated harassment, according to CNN.

Weyand is a freelance software developer, according to his LinkedIn account. The day before the incident, Weyan posted, “They’re trying to make a martyr of me, but I’m no martyr. I’m a helper and a doer. I want to help people but I don’t know how.” Other posts from the past few days have similar messages.

Jewish Film Festival 2019 Kicks Off in Jerusalem

Quentin Tarantino Speaking Hebrew During Screening of Doc His Work

Majestic ice menorah ready for Hanukkah in freezing Siberia

A majestic ice menorah is ready to warm up the freezing city of Tomsk, Siberia, where it’s going to be lit every night of the festival of Hanukkah.

Hanukkah, known as the festival of lights, begins on Sunday evening and will be celebrated for eight days and eight nights. While Jews all over the world are going to light nine-branch candelabras, not many communities can boast such a special, 3m. high menorah.

The sculpture was created by artist and Rebbetzin Gitty Kamintzky. Rabbi Levi Kamintzky and Gitty Kamintzky are Chabad emissaries in Tomsk. Gitty explained, “We have been here for 15 years, but this is the first time that we have built an ice menorah.”

The artwork features a prominent star of David on a base with a design resembling the stones of the Western Wall in Jerusalem.

Gitty and her husband have been in Tomsk for 15 years, organizing activities that range from Shabbat services to educational programs, activities for children and youth and communal holiday celebrations. Gitty said that around 5,000 Jews are estimated to live in the city, although it is difficult to identify a precise number.

In Tomsk, the average temperatures don’t go above -2 between November and March, therefore the menorah is expected to stand outside the synagogue for a long time. Gitty explained, “It will be there until it warms up in Siberia, which happens around April. So I guess it will melt more or less around Pesach.”



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