Friday, June 30, 2017

French Islam's radical turn, and its ramifications for French Jews

Via Mosaic Magazine (Neil Rogachevsky):
Murdered by Mohamed Merah
Recent attacks in Paris, London, and Manchester have supplied horrifying evidence that “homegrown jihad” remains a potent force in Western countries, especially but not only in Europe. Yet a good understanding of the phenomenon remains elusive. Why are non-negligible numbers of young Muslim men, born often to quite secular parents and brought up in Western societies, transforming themselves into self-styled knights of jihad? 
Of the many explanations that have been advanced, two may be regarded as serious. (...)
According to the second explanation, the problem originates within Islam itself and is related to the religion’s accumulating demographic strength in Europe, to its ideological vigor (and rigor), and to inflammatory geopolitical factors like today’s civil war in the Middle East. In this reading, it is to internal developments within Islam that we should look in grappling with the rise of sharia-friendly politics in Europe and the creation of environments hospitable to the jihadist impulse. 
A principal promoter of the second view is Gilles Kepel, a political scientist at the Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris. An expert less in Islamic theology than in the politics of Islam today, Kepel has written extensively on the Middle East and France, most recently on the deteriorating situation in the immigrant-heavy suburbs (banlieues) that surround many French cities. 
His latest book, Terror in France, first published in French as Terreur dans L’Hexagone, offers a concrete account of how Islamism, in both its more passive and more militant varieties, has gained ground in France over the last few decades. (...) 
In general, as Kepel shows, the growing toleration of Islamist opinion and belief has created environments in which aspiring jihadists can find nourishment or, at a minimum, passive acquiescence in their schemes.   
In this connection, Kepel offers an interesting take on the role of Jews and anti-Semitism in this strengthening of Islamism in France. Anti-Semitism, he shows, has been one of the chief engines for the consolidation of Islamist opinion and belief. Over the last decade, pamphlets, speakers, and activists have intensively demonized Israel for its alleged crimes in Gaza and elsewhere. Islamist political propaganda, whose goal is to perpetuate the sense that Western Muslims are under siege, is riddled with references to the evil of Israel, Zionism, and the French government’s alleged favoritism toward the Jewish state. (You learn something new every day!) 
Moreover, as is well known, Jews have been a principal target of homegrown French jihadists. In 2012, a full three years before the attacks on Charlie Hebdo and the kosher supermarket in Paris, the Toulouse-born Mohammed Merah murdered a rabbi and three Jewish schoolchildren in his rampage through southern France—without prompting anything like the emotional outpouring of Je suis Charlie-style identification with his victims. 
Kepel’s analysis here—aside from a few lazy and sadly typical comparisons between “total Islam” and “total Judaism”—confirms Ruth Wisse’s point that anti-Semitism can be a potent force for mobilizing and conjoining otherwise disparate groups, individuals, and interests. Thus, he cites the 2014 comments of the president of the mosque in the southern French town of Lunel, home many centuries ago to the great ibn Tibbon family of Jewish physicians and translators. Pressured to respond to the fact that no fewer than twenty young Lunel residents had gone to fight in Syria, he extenuated by asking: 
Why condemn these young people who left in the name of an injustice in Syria—and not the French [Jewish] people who left and killed Palestinian babies with [the IDF in Gaza] last summer? . . . I don’t see why I should issue a statement if ten [sic] people left out of a thousand.
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UK: Doctor who backed fight against racism has sent antisemitic tweets

Via The Jewish Chronicle:
A doctor who publicly asked Manchester mayoral candidates to back the fight against racism has been found to have tweeted a string of antisemetic messages. 
Dr Siema Iqbal spoke at the inaugural Assembly of Greater Manchester Citizens (GMC) which was held by community organising group Citizens UK on May 1. She asked the city’s three most prominent candidates for mayor, including the eventual victor Andy Burnham, for their plans to tackle racism. However, the Jewish Leadership Council has now drawn attention to Dr Iqbal’s own Twitter messages regarding Israel and Jews. 
It has been revealed that during the summer of 2014, Dr Iqbal - who is said by Citizens UK, to have a “reputation for promoting inter-faith dialogue” locally - shared a message calling for the relocation of Israel to the United States, as a “solution” to the Gaza conflict. 
She also retweeted a post accusing Israel of “shopping around for cheaper bombs” and a message which read: “When a people who survived a genocide use it as an excuse to commit genocide”, against backdrop of a Star of David splattered with blood. The first message was the same one which was shared by Labour MP Naz Shah, and for which Ms Shah has since apologised. 
Dr Iqbal accused a Jewish Israel-advocacy group of pursuing a “vicious and vindictive campaign of misrepresentation and harassment” against her. 
She also said she has made clear her retweets “are not endorsements”, and that she apologised soon after sending the tweets.
"The Jews are shopping around for cheaper bombs" 
 read more

Thursday, June 29, 2017

UK: Pro-Israel MP tells of swastika daubing during election campaign

Via The Jewish Chronicle:

Sheryll Murray MP
Sheryll Murray, the pro-Israel Conservative MP for South East Cornwall, has described the abuse she suffered during the general election campaign. 
Speaking at Prime Minister’s Questions, Ms Murray, a Conservative Friends of Israel supporter, told MPs that opponents had carved swastikas into her campaign posters and urinated on her office door. 
She said: "Over the past months, I've had swastikas carved into posters, social media posts like ‘burn the witch’. 
"People putting Labour Party leaflets on my home photographed them and pushed them through my letterbox. 
"Someone even urinated on my office door. Hardly kinder, gentler politics. 
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France: Arsonist caught setting fire to synagogue at Epinay

Via the National Bureau for Vigilance Against Antisemitism (BNVCA):

The BNVCA released a statement strongly condemning the attempted arson of the synagogue of Epinay Sur Seine, 41 rue de Paris, perpetrated on the night of June 24 by an individual, aged around fifty, who deliberately set fire to the dustbins placed outside in front of synagogue door.

The door and the adjacent premises are reported to have been damaged by the fire.  The BNVCA praises the action of the police who caught the arsonist in flagrante delicto.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

BBC: Holocaust is a 'sensitive' topic for Muslims

The following appeared in a BBC article "Muslim girls complain of Polish racism on Holocaust study trip"
The Holocaust is a sensitive topic for many Muslims because Jewish survivors settled in British-mandate Palestine, on land which later became the state of Israel.

This sentence repeats a common antisemitic Arab canard - that they're paying the price for the crimes of the Europeans, and that Jews have no rights to live in their own homeland.

It also erases Muslim complicity in the Holocaust and Muslim support of the Nazis.  In North Africa, Muslims were incited by Nazis to kill Jews.  In Palestine, local leaders contacted the Nazis to help them achieve the extermination of all the Jews in the Middle East. 

So yes, it's a 'sensitive topic'. 

The sentence was not needed in the article, but if it's already mentioned, the BBC shouldn't have repeated Muslim Holocaust denial claims without further explanation.

UK: Palestinian festival (Palestine Expo) billed as biggest of its kind in Europe in London

Via Melanie Phillips:

(...) Early next month a Palestinian cultural festival called Palestine Expo – billed as the biggest of its kind in Europe – is scheduled to take place at the QE2 centre in Westminster. It is being organised by the Friends of al Aqsa (FOA). The founder of FOA, Ismail Patel, has openly expressed support for Hamas. In 2009, he told a rally: “Hamas is no terrorist organisation. The reason they hate Hamas is because they refuse to be subjugated, occupied by the Israeli state, and we salute Hamas for standing up to Israel […] to the state of Israel: you no longer represent the Jewish people.” 
The Culture Secretary, Sajid Javid, had told FOA he was considering cancelling the event on the grounds of “concerns that your organisation and those connected with it have expressed public support for a proscribed organisation, namely Hamas, and that you have supported events at which Hamas and Hizballah – also proscribed – have been praised”. 
Today, however, Javid’s department reportedly told FOA it was “content to let the event proceed.” 
That will please Tim Black. In a piece for Spiked published before Javid made his decision, he wrote it would be wrong to ban Palestine Expo just because those involved “have expressed something the state deems unacceptable”. Apparently he thought this unacceptable something amounted to “railing against Israel” and also had “a faintly Islamisty aura”. 
Well Hamas isn’t “faintly Islamisty”, nor is it merely guilty of “railing against Israel”. It is an Islamist terrorist organisation which has deranged views about Jews and wants to destroy Israel. It never ceases trying to murder Israelis whether by multiple rocket fire, tunnelling into their kindergartens in order to slaughter their children, slitting the throats of Israeli Jews as they sleep or blowing them up. 
It sets out to murder as many Jews as it can. Its sentiments are not merely “fringed with something more deeply antisemitic”. Its foundational covenant, as published in 1988, said this of the Jewish people: 
With money they have taken control of the world media – news agencies, the press, publishing houses, broadcasting services, etc. With money they sparked revolutions in various countries around the world in order to serve their interests and to reap profits. They were behind the French Revolution and the Communist Revolution and [they are behind] most of the revolutions about which we hear from time to time here and there. With money they have formed secret organisations, all over the world, in order to destroy [those countries’] societies and to serve the Zionists’ interests, such as the Freemasons, the Rotary Clubs, the Lions, the Sons of the Covenant [i.e. B’nei B’rith], etc. All of these are organisations of espionage and sabotage. With money they were able to take control of the colonialist countries, and [they] urged them to colonise many countries so that they could exploit their resources and spread moral corruption there.  
There is no end to what can be said about [their involvement in] local wars and world wars. They were behind World War I, through which they achieved the destruction of the Islamic Caliphate, reaped material profits, took control of numerous resources, obtained the Balfour Declaration, and established the League of the United Nations [sic] so as to rule the world through this organisation. They were [also] behind World War II, through which they reaped enormous profits from commerce in war materials and paved the way for the establishment of their state. They [also] suggested the formation of the United Nations and the Security Council to replace the League of the United Nations [sic] and to rule the world through this [new organisation]. Wherever there is war in the world, it is they who are pulling the strings behind the scenes. 
Hamas has recently revised this covenant. It was reported to be taking out these Jew-hating passages, having finally realised they might be somewhat unhelpful to the Hamas PR machine which so wows western Israel-haters. In this interview, however, its spokesman sidestepped the question of whether it had actually done so.
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Tuesday, June 27, 2017

France: News agency apologizes for publishing Mideast map without mentioning Israel

Via European Jewish Press (EJP):

Agence France-Presse (AFP) has apologized to the Simon Wiesental Center for publishing recently a map of the Middle East on its Twitter page that didn’t mention Israel. 
“A regrettable fault was committed which was corrected as soon as it was noted,” the agency’s Director of information, Michele Leridon, wrote to Shimon Samuels, the Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Drector of international relations in Paris. 
“This error was due to the reuse of a map background used for a different subject (the division between Shiites and Sunnis in the Muslim world),” the letter said. 
“Only the names of the countries directly concerned with this matter were inscribed (in the same way as if we produced a map of the Eurozone, with the name of Switzerland not appearing on the map of Europe). When we learned of our error, it was immediately corrected. A map mentioning Israel was sent to all our outlets. We sincerely deplore this incident and pray that you will excuse us,” Leridon wrote. 
Earlier this month, Samuel wrote a letter to AFP CEO Emmanuel Hoog in which he said that “inaction on this issue will be construed as an AFP endorsement of Iranian-declared policy to exterminate the Jewish state.” 
The letter argued , "that AFP - an important global news agency - appears to sink so low as to commit the same outrage, we can only hope that this was the act of an anti-Semitic lone-wolf or a budding, Jihadist employee". 
read more

France: Israel not mentioned on Agence France Presse Mideast map

Europe must stop funding demonization of Israel

Via YNet (Ben-Dror Yemini):
This image featured on the website of the influencial State-funded Belgian-Palestinian Association (Brussels-Wallonia), founded 42 year ago... It was created by Oxfam Belgium and only withdrawn by Oxfam International following a worldwide campaign led by the Simon Wiesenthal Center.

In the past, Europe was involved in the demonization of Jews. Today, Europe is funding the demonization of the Jewish state. A normal country can’t allow donations that fund the campaign to destroy that same country, and it’s time for Israel stop this absurdity too. 
About a year ago, the Ramallah-based Popular Art Center staged a musical performance for “the Palestinian martyrs,” titled “No to laying down guns.” There is nothing new here. This is the “education to peace” that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas declared in his meeting with US President Donald Trump. Abbas declared, and the European Union is paying in funding for the center. The more interesting thing is that the grant was given as part of a special project for “increasing Palestinian public awareness of EU core values.” 

Particularly large funding, of €2.5 million, was given to the Women’s Center for Legal Aid and Counseling (WCLAC). One of the senior employees of the WCLAC is Manal Tamimi. Tamimi propagates anti-Semitic cartoons, often defines Israel as a Nazi state, and her tweets include content such as “Vampire Zionist celebrating by drinking Palestinian bloods” and “I do hate Israel, I do hate Zionism, I wish a third intifada coming soon and people raise up and kills all these Zionist settlers everywhere.” 

Furthermore, dozens of Palestinians NGOs which support the BDS movement have the support of European countries, the European Union and other foundations. Do European taxpayers know that their money is funding anti-Semitic incitement and encouragement of terrorism? Probably not. But the EU knows. A parliamentary question on the issue was submitted at the European Parliament, and the NGO Monitor organization sent a letter to the EU foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, specifying the activities the EU funds were used for. The Delegation of the European Union to Israel said in response that the EU was against incitement and anti-Semitism, and that funding was only provided for the goals defined in the projects.

A double standard in all its glory Admittedly, there are already signs of change. On May 17, the European Parliament decided to “ensure that no EU funding can be directly or indirectly diverted to terrorist organizations or activities that incite these acts.” More importantly, about two weeks ago the same parliament adopted the working definition of anti-Semitism which clarifies, once and for all, that demonization, drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis and denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination are anti-Semitism. All the bodies supporting the BDS movement fall into this definition.

There have been interesting developments in other countries in Europe. Only last week, the Swiss Council of States voted in favor of a resolution to prevent funding to NGOs involved in anti-Israel incitement, racism and anti-Semitism, after a similar resolution was adopted by the Swiss Parliament in March. The Swiss Council of States’ resolution explicitly mentioned the BDS campaign. Norway and Denmark are holding back budgets too, following the hard work of the NGO Monitor organization. Germany is one of the only countries in Europe which keeps funding the demonization without a hint of self-criticism. (...)
Israel cannot stop the EU or Germany from funding organizations that support terror or the BDS movement and operate outside Israel. Israel can act, however, when it comes to bodies operating inside Israel. A normal country can’t allow donations that fund, whether directly or indirectly, the campaign to destroy that same country.

Europe is not an enemy. On the contrary, trade relations are thriving and our cooperation with the EU is growing in many fields. It seems, however, that when Europe condemns anti-Semitism on the windshield, it funds bodies that create the demonization on the rear window. In the past, Europe was involved in the demonization of the Jews. Today, Europe is funding the demonization of the Jewish state. Needless to say, this article wouldn’t have been written had Europe been funding bodies—both on the Israeli side and on the Palestinian side—that advance peace and reconciliation. But it’s the other way around: Europe is funding demonization. 

Monday, June 26, 2017

Germany: Israel does not allow parades celebrating the murder of German citizens, but Germany allows parades celebrating the murder of Jews

Via the Jerusalem Post (Benjamin Weinthal):
Lapid has sent a hard-hitting letter to Berlin Mayor Michael Müller for permitting Hezbollah to march in the German capital over the weekend. 
In the letter, which was sent Saturday, a day after the rally, and obtained by The Jerusalem Post, Lapid wrote: “This past week a lecture by a Knesset member from Yesh Atid [Aliza Lavie] was violently disrupted by radical anti-Israel activists at a university in Berlin. A few days later, demonstrators marched through your city proudly displaying photographs of the leader of an antisemitic terrorist organization. 
“As the son of a Holocaust survivor, I was deeply disturbed that in the same week that a group of Jews are targeted, antisemites are given the freedom of the city. We have stood in solidarity with Germany when you were hit by brutal terror attacks. We did that because we identified deeply with the pain caused by terrorism and we wanted to express our support for the people of you city.” 
Activists from the BDS campaign verbally attacked Lavie and Deborah Weinstein, an 82-year-old Holocaust survivor at Humboldt University in Berlin.  
A spokesman did not respond to a Post query as to whether the activists, who have been identified, have been banned from the university. 
Lapid, whose father, Yosef “Tommy” Lapid, survived the Hitler movement in Hungary, took aim at the mayor’s apparent reluctance to crackdown on Islamic terrorism in the capital. (...)
Lapid, who serves on the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, continued: 
“Freedom of expression doesn’t extend to the glorification of murder. Freedom of expression doesn’t extend to incitement. Hezbollah is no different to ISIS or al-Qaida in their attitude towards us. 
They hate Jews and they hate Christians, they hate women and they hate the LGBT community, they hate us and they hate you. Someone who is willing to carry the image of the leader of Hezbollah on the streets of Berlin is someone who is willing to murder on the streets of Berlin. 
The people who marched in your city on ‘Al Quds Day’ aren’t just our enemies, they are yours. 
“Mr. Mayor, your decision to remain silent in the face of this incitement and hatred is a grave mistake. Allowing the glorification of terrorism in your city won’t appease extremists, it will embolden them.” 
He ended his letter, asking Müller: “We would never allow a parade celebrating the murder of your citizens, why do you allow a parade celebrating the murder of ours?” 
According to Berlin’s intelligence agency, there are 250 active Hezbollah members and supporters in Berlin ad some 950 Hezbollah operatives in Germany.
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France: Terror cell sentenced over grenade attack on Jewish store

Via Times of Israel:
A French court on Thursday sentenced members of a jihadist network once considered among the country’s most dangerous to between one and 28 years in prison for an attack on a Jewish grocery store in 2012.
The “Cannes-Torcy cell,” named after the towns where its members were based, was accused of having planned several other attacks as well as seeking to join jihadist ranks in Syria before the network was dismantled in 2012. Eighteen men were found guilty and two were acquitted. 

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France: Jewish Students Fail Exams Due to Administration’s Refusal to Make Shabbat Accommodations

Via Algemeiner:
Hundreds of France’s Jewish students are finding themselves in an impossible situation. In a country where tests are frequently scheduled for Saturdays and administrators are wary of making accommodations for religion, students are often forced to either violate their commitment to Shabbat observance or fail exams.

This challenge is not new, but Sacha Ghozlan, president of the Union des Etudiants Juifs de France (Union of Jewish Students of France, or UEJF), told The Algemeiner the problem seems to have mushroomed during the past academic year.

“We have had many more students getting in touch with us than in the past,” said Ghozlan, who explained that students appeal to the UEJF for assistance in intervening with teachers and administrators, and even at times officials at the Ministry of Education.


“For the last two or three years, there has been an increased concern at universities by the fact that religion has been getting more and more attention in public debate, and they have responded by refusing to recognize that students — especially Jewish students — have the right to keep this law,” Ghozlan said. “They fear that if they give Jewish students this, they will ask for more and more.”

With so many students reaching out to the UEJF for help, Ghozlan’s team launched a reporting platform in September 2016 that made it easier for someone to file a request for assistance, and centralized UEJF’s data from the 25 schools — that’s 20 universities and five private schools — where it has student representatives.

This year, UEJF received nearly 200 appeals from students torn between their religion and their education.
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Sunday, June 25, 2017

Portugal: Israeli ambassador and Jewish leader physically threatened on campus - demonstrators shouted "Hamas! Hamas!"

This happened at the Faculty of Social and Human Sciences, Universidade Nova de Lisboa.  Interestingly, the shocking incident was kept under wraps!

Via Romeu Monteiro:
A Portuguese student told Romeu Monteiro about an event he helped organize at his public college campus in Lisbon in February 2016:
"We were locked inside with the demonstrators on the other side of the door screaming "Hamas! Hamas!" and they would not go away. 
It was anti-Semitic: the topic of the talk we organized was not Israel, it was Portuguese-Jewish heritage. 
The dean forbade police from coming on campus to remove the demonstrators. After a while we had to activate the emergency plan to evacuate. 
6 body guards surrounded the Israeli Ambassador and we also had to protect Esther Mucznik [a prominent Portuguese Jewish leader/speaker]. 
Some people were actually trying to physically attack them, we had to push them. The demonstrators were mostly radical leftist students."

Europe: Antisemitic violence mostly perpetrated by Muslim extremists

Via Israelly Cool and the University of Oslo:
The University of Oslo Center for Research on Extremism has published a report entitled Antisemitic Violence in Europe, 2005-2015 Exposure and Perpetrators in France, UK, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Russia
If that documentary on antisemitism in Europe bent some noses out of shape, the findings here most certainly will. 

I can’t say I am surprised in the slightest. You need only have seen those recent Al Quds day protests to feel the same way. 
No doubt the Israel haters will claim this proves only that antisemitism is caused by Israel. Not so, concludes the report.
The increase around the turn of the millennium coincided with rising tensions in the Israeli–Palestinian conflict, marked by the outbreak of the Second Intifada in 2000. Nonetheless, the connection between events in the Middle East and acts of violence against Jews in Europe is vague. First, the number of reported attacks on Jews does not always increase when the conflict in the Middle East flares up. Second, even though some attacks on Jews in Europe do occur in the wake of events in the Middle East, there is no direct causal link between Israeli government actions and subsequent attacks on Jews in Europe. Antisemitic attitudes and violence propensity are likely necessary conditions to trigger such attacks. In other words, events in the Middle East provide individuals in Western Europe who hold antisemitic views and are prone to violence with an occasion to attack Jews.
 Read the whole disturbing thing.

Switzerland: Intl Red Cross is facilitating salary payments to Palestinian terrorists

Via PMW (by Itamar Marcus and Maurice Hirsch, Adv.):
The Palestinian Authority is abusing the good will of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) to pay salaries to Palestinian Authority terrorists in Israeli prisons. Palestinian Media Watch (PMW) has written to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu informing him of this abuse, and suggested a means to rectify the situation. Following is a special report on the subject.
According to Palestinian Authority law, all Palestinians arrested for security offenses, which includes those who committed terror attacks, receive a PA salary from the date of arrest until the day of release. These salaries increase according to the amount of time the terrorist remains in prison and range from 1,400 shekels to 12,000 shekels per month. 
While the PA claims to foreign governments that these payments are "social welfare benefits" and not salaries, PMW has shown that this is false. (See appendix below) 
The ICRC supplies the forms that enable the payments to terrorists 
The PA Regulation 18 (2010), which established procedures for the PA payments to terrorist prisoners, states that a "wakil" - an "authorized agent" or "power of attorney" - will be appointed by the prisoner to determine who receives his salary. The regulation gives the prisoner the right to designate people other than his wife or parents. Appointment of an "agent" can be authorized only by the prisoner's signature on a special form. It is the ICRC that visits the prisoners and brings the form for the prisoners to sign. (...) 
Accordingly, the ICRC by supplying this form is facilitating salary payments to terrorists, something that is not part of the humanitarian work of the ICRC.  
Based on the above findings, the Director of PMW's Legal Department notified the ICRC and asked for their response.  
The ICRC in its response differentiated between two types of prisoners, "internees" and "detainees." "Detainees" includes those arrested, indicted or convicted of terrorism (see articles 66, 69 and 76 of Fourth Geneva Convention - GCIV), which includes the imprisoned Palestinian terrorists. In its response to PMW, about the "detainees" the ICRC referred to article 10 of GCIV which provides:
"The provisions of the present Convention constitute no obstacle to the humanitarian activities which the International Committee of the Red Cross or any other impartial humanitarian organization may, subject to the consent of the Parties to the conflict concerned, undertake for the protection of civilian persons and for their relief."  (Emphasis added)
Since facilitating the payments of salaries to terrorists is not something the ICRC is compelled by GCIV to provide, and is certainly not part of the humanitarian work of the ICRC, all services to "detainees" requires the "consent of the Parties." This means that the ICRC cannot facilitate these payments to terrorists without the consent of the Israeli government. 
While it is unclear whether the ICRC knew, prior to PMW's query, that the PA is using the form it provides as a means to pay the terrorist salaries, the ICRC's response to PMW's inquiry stated that the organization provides the function as a "humanitarian" activity. (...) 
The PA salaries to imprisoned terrorists is not humanitarian or social welfare for families but is in fact a salary to the terrorist prisoner himself 
PA payments to terrorists are not social welfare for the families but are salaries to the terrorists themselves. The PA law itself uses the term "salary" [See: Palestinian Authority Government resolution # 23 of 2010 and Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, April 15, 2011]; an attempt by some PA members to change the language of the law from "salary" to "social assistance" was blocked and the law remained unchanged [See: Minister of Prisoners' Affairs Issa Karake - WAFA news agency, Dec. 27, 2012 and Chairman of the Prisoners' Club Qadura Fares - Al-Quds Internet edition, Dec. 27, 2012]; the payment is paid based on "time served" by the terrorist and irrespective of financial needs of the family of the terrorist [See: Al-Quds, Jan. 3, 2010Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, April 15, 2011] and is subject to income tax [Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 19, 2011]. Single prisoners receive the same basic high salaries as those married with children. While social welfare benefits are universally calculated as a portion of the minimum or average salary, the salaries paid to the terrorists are quite clearly not social welfare benefits, as they are based on the number of years a prisoner has served time in jail.
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Friday, June 23, 2017

France/Germany: The suppressed Arte antisemitism documentary in historic perspective

Via The Jerusalem Post (Manfred Gerstenfeld): 
(...) Another important case which elucidates the same “hiding truth policy’” occurred when the European Monitoring Center for Racism and Xenophobia – an EU agency since replaced by the Fundamental Rights Agency – asked the then 15 EU member states to report on antisemitic violence and viewpoints in 2002. The information the European Monitoring Center obtained was passed on to ZfA, the Center for Research on Antisemitism at the Technical University in Berlin, with the request to analyze the data. 
An American scholar, Amy Elman, analyzed how this issue developed in her 2015 book, The European Union, Anti-Semitism, and the Politics of Denial. She said in an interview: “The Zfa completed its document in October 2003. It found that violent attacks against Jews often rose from virulent anti-Zionism across the political spectrum. Moreover, it specifically identified young Muslims of Arab descent as the main perpetrators of physical attacks against Jews and the desecration and destruction of synagogues. Many were victims of racism and social exclusion themselves.” 
The European Monitoring Center decided not to publish the Zfa report, claiming that it was not meant for publication. Zfa responded that the frequent mention of Muslim perpetrators of antisemitism and anti-Zionist attacks was what had put off the European Monitoring Center. The Zfa also made public that the European Monitoring Center repeatedly asked it to change its findings, which it refused to do. 
This shelving of the report and the reaction of the Zfa led to a scandal. The World Jewish Congress then published the Zfa’s unchanged report on the Internet. 
In April 2004, the European Monitoring Center issued a lengthier study on antisemitism which was largely based on the Zfa report. Despite it being longer it hardly mentioned any perpetrators, thus hiding many cases of Muslim and leftwing antisemitism. 
In 2012, a four-part Israeli television program called Allah-Islam, The Spread of Islam in Europe, was broadcast by Channel 10. An Israeli journalist, Zvi Yehezkeli, presented himself in Europe as a Palestinian. 
He filmed the Muslim ghettos in a number of European countries. The program focused attention on violence, drugs and weapons possession, as well as other criminal activities occurring in parts of Muslim communities. 
Yehezkeli mentioned the religious fanaticism, the intimidation of dissenting Muslims, the discrimination against women, and “honor killings.” He also devoted attention to the widespread antisemitism in these communities. The rare European TV programs that discussed such issues usually dealt with a few specific problems relating to Muslim communities in a single country. 
After the entire Channel 10 series was broadcast, a Belgian journalist came to interview me about it. My first reaction was that such documentaries should have been made by a variety of broadcasters in European countries in previous years. It would then have been logical for Channel 10 to acquire one of these, add Hebrew subtitles and broadcast it. I noted that it was telling that since there were no such programs, Channel 10 had no choice but spend substantial money to produce the series. 
I said also that the fact that such documentaries had not been made by European broadcasters showed that many problematic issues with parts of Muslim communities were being swept under the carpet.  The interviewer agreed with me. He added that his bosses probably would not like what I said. Indeed, they did not broadcast the interview.
Arte’s initial decision to suppress the new documentary, Chosen and Excluded – The Hate for Jews in Europe, created by German producers Joachim Schröder and Sophie Hafner, continues this pattern. The German public broadcaster WDR through which Arte had commissioned the documentary continued to hesitate to broadcast it. 
This time, however, the suppression of information on antisemitism backfired.
The German daily Bild made the documentary available on its website for 24 hours. Hundreds of thousands of people viewed it on that day. It now appears on YouTube. Thereafter Arte reversed its decision and decided to broadcast the movie.
read more 

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Austria: Far-right Freedom Party commits to moving embassy to Jerusalem

Heinz-Christian Strache
Heinz-Christian Strache stands a real chance of winning the upcoming national elections 
The head of Austria's Freedom Party Heinz-Christian Strache on Wednesday committed in writing to moving the Austrian embassy to Jerusalem, if the party wins in the upcoming national elections. 
Strache also affirmed, in a letter addressed to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that he believes Israel has the right to build in all areas of the state with Jerusalem as its capital. The letter was signed during a meeting with Member of Knesset Yehuda Glick in Vienna. 
Strache is the political heir of Jörg Haider, the former head of the Freedom Party who was infamous for his anti-Semitism and pro-Nazi opinions. When the party joined the Austrian government in 2000, Israel recalled its ambassador in a diplomatic crisis that continued until 2003. 
Former Israeli elder statesman Shimon Peres refused a visit from Strache last year, reportedly due to advice from the Israeli Foreign MinistryStrache stands a real chance of winning the upcoming elections in Austria, if not to be chancellor, then to be in a coalition. Austria's Freedom Party is widely considered the strongest far right party in all of Europe. (...) 
Having made comments in the past that Austria is not responsible for its previous crimes, namely in relation to Nazi Germany, Strache told i24NEWS last year that "different people in different periods afterwards have interpreted the situation as Austria being occupied. Others certainly wished for this unification with National Socialist Germany."
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Far-right Austrian party chief visits Israel, tours Yad Vashem

UK: Revealed: Charity leader Nazim Ali who blamed fire tragedy on "Zionists"

Via The Jewish Chronicle:

Nazim Ali
The speaker who repeatedly made antisemitic statements when he addressed the crowd at yesterday’s Al Quds Day parade can be revealed as Nazim Ali, the director of self-styled “advocacy group” the Islamic Human Rights Commission.   
Mr Ali whipped up the 1,000 anti-Israel fanatics attending the march with a series of chants blaming the Grenfell Tower tragedy on “Zionism”. 
He also called for Israel’s annihilation, and accused the Israel Defence Force of being a “terrorist organisation that murdered Palestinians, Jews and British soldiers.” 
Mr Ali stayed at the head of the marchers - many of whom held aloft flags of the banned terror organisation Hezbollah - for the two hours it took for the parade to make its way through central London to Grosvenor Square, Using a loud-hailer to lead them in a stream of anti-Israel abuse.   
At one point he spotted pro-Israel counter-demonstrators carrying Israeli flags.He ordered the march to halt, insisting it would not move on until the “Zionist flag” was removed. He said: “We are fed up of the Zionists. We are fed up of their rabbis. We are fed of their synagogues. We are fed up of their supporters.” 
Screaming into the microphone, Mr Ali guided the crowd in a chant of: “Judaism – yes. Zionism – no. The state of Israel must go.” 
It was just as the march was about to set off that Mr Ali walked towards a small group of pro-Israeli demonstrators and began singing: “Bye, bye Zionists.” 
He then made his remarks linking the Grenfell Tower tragedy to Zionism, adding: “These people do not know what justice is because it’s their supporters who are supporting the Tory Party, that’s who they are. Zionists who give money to the Tory Party to kill people in high rise blocks.“

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Germany: BDS activists storm lecture by MK in Berlin Humbolt University

All this fuss and there was hardly anyone attending the conference...  There were more protesters than attendees.

Via Arutz Sheva 7:
A lecture given by MK Aliza Lavie (Yesh Atid) at the Humboldt University of Berlin Tuesday was interrupted by a group of BDS activists, including a number of Israelis. 
The event was held in the framework of a visit by a delegation of young people from the Yesh Atid political party in Berlin and Frankfurt, led by MK Aliza Lavie. The delegation aimed to promote information activities among students on leading campuses in Germany, and to hold a series of meetings with members of parliament, representatives of the Jewish community, students, and public opinion leaders. 
The disruption took place several minutes after MK Lavie began her lecture. The BDS activists began shouting and cursing and did not allow the lecture to continue or a discussion to take place. Lavie's attempts to reply and hold a discussion were met with screams accusing her "a child murderer" and that "the blood of the Gaza Strip is on your hands." 
The rioters also accused Israel of apartheid and war crimes. A protester who identified himself as "a journalist from Gaza" said that he was quoting materials from the radical Israeli organizations B'Tselem and Breaking the Silence. 
Those present said that the provocation was staged and planned in advance in order to discredit Israel and prevent the Israeli representatives from speaking. 
The scene played out before Devorah Weinstein, an 82 year old Holocaust survivor who participated in the delegation. The delegation had just visited the monument in the library square of the university, where in 1933 German students and lecturers burned tens of thousands of books of Jews and opponents of the Nazi regime.
read more (watch the video)

Germany compares Israel's NGO funding law proposal with that of Russia and China

Via I24 News:
A spokesman for the German foreign ministry compared Israel's policy on funding on non-governmental organisations to that of Russia and China, provoking a rebuke from the Israeli embassy in Berlin, Haaretz newspaper reported. 
Speaking on June 14 about a new law in Hungary that would force foreign-funded NGOs to register as "foreign-supported organisations," the spokesman for Germany's foreign ministry, Martin Shaefer, said that the law was similar to new laws in other countries. 
“Hungary thus joins the ranks of countries like Russia, China and Israel," he said at a weekly press briefing, "which obviously regard the funding of non-government organisations, of civil society efforts, by donors from abroad as a hostile or at least an unfriendly act. 
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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

German neo-Nazi party builds alliance with Assad and Hezbollah

Via Jerusalem Post (h/t glykosymoritis):
Stronger alliances are growing between the German neo-Nazi party Der Dritte Weg and the Assad regime, as well as the Syrian dictator’s strategic partner Hezbollah in Lebanon.

The website of the Der Dritte Weg (The Third Way) published an April 30 report on the right-wing extremist group’s visit to Lebanon to champion Hezbollah’s war against Israel.

According to the organization’s website, members of the Der Dritte Weg met with the extremist Syrian Social Nationalist Party (SSNP) in Lebanon and representatives of the Bashar Assad regime in Syria.

Members of the Der Dritte Weg can be viewed on the website at the Hezbollah propaganda museum called Where the Land Speaks to the Heavens in the village of Mleeta in southern Lebanon. Kai Zimmermann, a senior leader of Der Dritte Weg, posed next to a plaque reading, “No, Israel is not invincible.” The neo-Nazi group labeled Israel a “terror state” on its website.
In 2013, Der Dritte Weg announced its formation and outlined a detailed call to boycott Israel. The group, whose goal is the creation of “German socialism,” titled its plan “What every person can do against the Zionist genocide.”

The Bavarian news outlet BR24 reported on Sunday that a young Der Dritte Weg activist traveled with a pro-Assad group called European Front for Syria to Syria and met with representatives of the regime and the fragmented country’s information minister.
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UK: Teenagers grab at Jewish boy's hat and bicycle, threatening to “beat” him

Via CAA:
A 16-year-old Jewish boy sitting on a park bench in London was helped by members of the public as teenagers grabbed at his hat and bicycle, threatening to “beat” him.

The incident occurred just before 15:00 today in Springfield Park in Hackney. The Jewish boy was resting on the bench when he was allegedly approached by two younger teenagers aged approximately 14 and described as “Asian”, who grabbed at his bicycle and his hat, which is of the kind traditionally worn by charedi (orthodox) Jews. When the Jewish boy asked them to stop, he said that they threatened to “beat” him.

Members of the public came to the boy’s defence and the Metropolitan Police Service and Stamford Hill Shomrim were called to the scene. The boy told them that he was convinced that the teenagers targeted him because he was Jewish, which means that under the so-called ‘MacPherson Principle’ it must be recorded and investigated as an antisemitic hate crime.

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Germany: Two sculptures of Jewish sporting heroes destroyed in Frankfurt

Via The Local:
 Unknown criminals have destroyed two sculptures of once successful Jewish athletes at an open air exhibition in Frankfurt.

The larger than life plexiglas sculptures, on display in Rathenauplatz in the centre of Germany’s finance hub, were of Lilli Henoch and Walther Bensemann.

According to the Jewish Museum in Frankfurt they were ripped from their pedestals on two successive nights over the weekend.

Deputy head of the museum, Fritz Backhaus, said the criminals had used extreme violence to destroy the sculptures.

The exhibition, which has been on display in several German cities, portrays 17 successful Jewish athletes who were persecuted by the Nazis from 1933 onwards.

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UK: UKIP candidate Philip Rose tweeted David Icke’s conspiracy myth about “Rothschild Zionists”

Via CAA:
It has been discovered that Philip Rose, the UKIP parliamentary candidate for Amber Valley, in Derbyshire, in the general election that has just closed, has tweeted the views of David Icke, and his theories about what he calls “Rothschild Zionism”. Mr Icke claims that a secret cabal of “Rothschild Zionists” has subverted democracy and secretly runs the world, writing in his book: “I strongly believe that a small Jewish clique which has contempt for the mass of Jewish people worked with non-Jews to create the First World War, the Russian Revolution, and the Second World War. This Jewish elite used the First World War to secure the Balfour Declaration and the principle of the Jewish State of Israel (for which, given the genetic history of most Jewish people, there is absolutely no justification on historical grounds or any other).”

Mr Rose has repeatedly voiced his support for Mr Icke’s various theories on Twitter and Facebook, including claiming that: “Fabians a part of the elite communitarian agenda – Rothschild-Zionist clean sweep. Perhaps real division = liberty or [New World Order]?”

It is disturbing that UKIP should have selected a parliamentary candidate who subscribes to antisemitic conspiracy myths. Recently we discovered that another UKIP candidate, Captain Paddy Singh had tweeted: “At times I ask myself were the Nazis right in herding the Jews into concentration camps”.
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Austria: Half of Muslim youth hold antisemitic views

Via Jerusalem Post:
A study published by the University of Teacher Education in Vienna released on Saturday showed that almost 50% of young Austrian Muslims maintain an antisemitic attitude. The systematic delegitimization of Israel in Muslim-majority countries helps explain “imported antisemitism” into Europe, wrote the Austrian daily Der Standard in their report on the poll.

The poll asked Austrian Muslim students if they felt that “Jews have too much influence in Austria,” and 48% agreed with the statement.

The students aged between 16 through 19 have migrant backgrounds from a diverse set of Muslim-majority countries and some non-Muslim nations, including Bosnia, Turkey, Albania and Bulgaria. The students study at apprentice schools while working in the restaurant and hotel industry.

The authors of the study, Georg Lauss and Stefan Schmid-Heher, told Der Standard, in which the study was first reported, that “educational and prevention efforts against antisemitism need to be strengthened.”

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Belgium: Media more interested in Palestine than war-torn former colony Congo (millions have died)

Via Camera:
"Tragic Inaction on Congo" 
An Op-Ed in the International New York Times today discusses, as its headline puts it, "The U.N.'s tragic inaction on Congo." 
The piece focuses on the tragic killing of two Westerners in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The pair were working for the United Nations, which, the authors protest, has failed to investigate the killings. The authors link the incident to a wider phenomenon: "their deaths are a reminder of how little attention is paid to the killings of hundreds of Congolese in the Kasai region since last August," they say, noting the recent discovery of dozens of mass graves in the region.  
The passive voice here — "little attention is paid" — means readers aren't told who, exactly, isn't paying attention. But if history is any indication, the same newspaper publishing this Op-Ed is a prominent example of those guilty of paying relatively little attention to violence in Congo.  
The book Stealth Conflicts: How the World's Worst Violence is Ignored, by Virgil Hawkins, shows that The New York Times largely overlooked the deaths of nearly two million people during the first two years of fighting in the DRC.  
The discrepancy between how the newspaper covered that violence and the fighting between Palestinians and Israel starting in 2000 is highlighted by a striking graphic in Hawkins' book:

The graphic above shows Belgian daily newspaper Le Soir is much more interested in Israel-bashing than in covering the ordeal of the people of Congo, their former colony, where millions have died.  Le Monde (France) isn't interested either.

Monday, June 19, 2017

UK: BBC piece: 'Zionists stole foods from Palestinians'

Via Point of No Return: Jewish Refugees from Arab Countries blog:
Travellers to Israel will find it hard to find 'Jewish food', alleges journalist Sarah Treleaven for BBC Travel (article not visible if you are in the UK). That's because the Zionists appropriated 'Palestinian' dishes in order to construct an 'authentic' national narrative! Mizrahim and Sephardim who have been eating these foods for millennia are, not for the first time, invisible in the BBC's world view. 
“One of the biggest shocks for many foreign visitors to Israel is the lack of familiar Jewish cuisine. Where are the smoked salmon, bagels and cream cheese at breakfast? What about the delis that define Jewish cuisine from Montreal to Los Angeles? Or the kugel (a casserole made from egg noodles or potato), gefilte fish (an appetizer made from poached fish) and matzoh ball soup served at Jewish tables around the world? 
“The early Zionists eagerly adopted Palestinian dishes, such as falafel, hummus, and shawarma, while in recent years Israelis have developed a more diversified palate. Still, ‘Jewish food’ remains scarce. But very few visitors know the reasons behind the dearth of it in Israel: despite the fact that the early settlers were mostly Ashkenazi Jews from Eastern Europe, they forsook traditional Jewish food both because of scarcity but also in deliberate service to the formation of a new national narrative.” 
“Early adherents to the Zionist project, committed to creating a Jewish state in the territory now known as Israel, sought to abandon vestiges of their past. Just as the European settlers favoured Hebrew over Yiddish and khakis over frock coats and homburgs, they also purposefully chose to eat indigenous foods over Ashkenazi ones. 
“The adoption of indigenous food lent the early European implants an air of authenticity. The production of local ingredients – the things that grew well in the desert and along the Mediterranean coastline, and the many dishes adapted from Arab kitchens – became part of the Zionist narrative.”
Edward Solomon has given Point of No Return permission to quote his rebuttal:   
"This article is replete with out-and-out lies and falsehoods. Based on Sarah Treleaven's limited and blinkered view of Jewish history and cuisine, Israeli food should consist of lokshen, bagels, gefilte fish, matzah ball soup, kugel, chopped liver and cholent. 
The rich and varied panoply of Middle Eastern and North African Jewish foods, such as sabikh, tagine, tbit, kubbah, loubiah, kahi, and countless other dishes of Moroccan, Egyptian, Syrian, Ottoman Turkish, Persian, Indian, and Iraqi origins documented by writers such as Linda Dangoor and Claudia Roden, cooked and eaten in Israel, are completely glossed over in the interest of presenting a one-sided, politicised narrative that paints the Zionist Jews as Ashkenazic interlopers who stole Palestinian dishes to claim for their own. 
read more 


BBC Travel politicises food to promote a narrative

UK: Al-Quds Day speaker blames Grenfell Tower fire on 'Zionists' (London)

Via The Jewish Chronicle:

Organisers of the annual Al-Quds Day parade in central London have sparked fury after attempting to blame the Grenfell Tower tragedy on "Zionists". 
Around 1,000 people joined the anti-Israel march - with numerous men, women and children openly waving the flag of proscribed terrorist organisation Hezbollah in full view of dozens of Metropolitan Police officers on duty for the event. 
But the march - a pro-Palestinian event first started in Iran in 1979 by Ayatollah Khomeni and calling for Israel's demise - left many onlookers in London's Regent Street stunned when a link was made to last week's fire. 
Speaking through a loudspeaker at the front of the demonstration, a man said: "This demonstration calls on justice for Grenfell. 
"Some of the biggest supporters of the Conservative Party are Zionists."They are responsible for the murder of the people in Grenfell. 
“The Zionist supporters of the Tory Party. Free, Free, Palestine!" 
One female shopper shouted "disgusting remarks". 
When the JC asked why one of the march leaders was able to express such an opinion openly, a female police officer said: "It's just an opinion." 
As the demonstration left its starting point outside the BBC building in Duchess Street, supporters held up banners stating: "Zionism is Racism" and "We are all Hezbollah". 
Chants from the crowd included the slogan "From the river to the sea - Palestine will be free”. 
But they also shouted: "Zionists/ISIS are the same. Only difference is the name". 
But also noticeable were the hundreds of smaller paper flags bearing the machine gun logo of the Hezbollah movement. 
One large Hezbollah flag was also flown next to a large Palestinian flag at the front of the march.
Note: Hezbollah is not a "proscribed terrorist organisation" in the UK and in Europe.  As Colonel Richard Kemp points out: "UK only designates part of Hizballah as terrorist yet whole organization is one, led by same terrorist leaders. Time to follow US & ban all." A completely spurious distinction is made between the supposed political and military wings of the movement. That's why demonstrators pinned this message on their flags: "This flag is to show my support for the political wing of Hizbullah".

Sunday, June 18, 2017

France/Switzerland: Academic makes up non-existent ‘Gaza invasions’

Via Honest Reporting:
All of the academic qualifications in the world aren’t enough to prevent the publication of abysmal articles. 

Such is the case of Dr. Mohammad-Mahmoud Ould Mohamedou, a former minister of Foreign Affairs for Mauritania, a former postdoc researcher at Harvard University, a lecturer at SciencesPo, Paris, and a Professor of International History at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva. 
His curriculum vitae is certainly pretty impressive. 
Despite this however, Mohamedou makes up complete falsehoods in an article published in the Swiss daily newspaper Le Temps’s blog section “Les temps du Moyen-Orient” (The Times of the Middle East). 
In his articled titled “State of stasis in Palestine”, Mohamedou tries to explain why the Israeli-Palestinian conflict still has not been solved and writes the following sentence:

[Highlighted text translated as: “or the invasions of Gaza (evacuated in 2005 but still besieged) by the Israeli army in 2008, 2011, 2012 and 2014 will not change the deal and the structural nature of this deadlock.”] 
We learn that Israel “invaded” the Gaza Strip four times in the last 10 years.Surprising news, given that the IDF only entered Gaza during Operations Cast Lead & Protective Edge in 2008-2009 and 2014 respectively. (...)
It is also interesting to note that the article fails to mention Palestinian terror attacks against Israelis or Hamas’ indiscriminate rocket fire. Mohamedou tries to put the blame entirely on Israel for the situation of the Palestinians. 
The question remains: What does Mohamedou teach his students in SciencesPo or at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies? Does he also make up “alternative facts” in his classes? 
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