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Wednesday, June 21, 2017

From Ian:

Richard Millett: Physically attacked at SOAS after anti-Israel event with Roger Waters.
Jonathan Hoffman asked a question and he also interjected when SOAS lecturer Matar claimed outrageously that “anyone who is pro-Palestinian is instantly labelled anti-Semitic”.
When the event finished I met up with Jonathan inside the auditorium and he was being quickly surrounded by those wanting to speak to him. I jokingly castigated him for asking an “unbiased question”.
A male next to Jonathan then turned to me and asked if I was with him (Jonathan) and I said “yes” presuming he wanted to chat about the film. But he was immediately face-to-face with me and I noticed he was totally drunk. He was a white male, much taller than me and much younger, probably in his mid to late twenties.
I tried to get away but had nowhere to go as the room was very crowded. There was no security around whatsoever. He was facing me very close telling me I was going to be “f#*king mugged off”. I asked him to calm down and back off or I’d call the police and that I just wanted a relaxing evening to which he responded (here’s the audio):
“I’ll give you a relaxing exit. Would you like a relaxing exit? I’ll tell you what, you’ll get a f#*king pasting. You’ll get a f#*king pasting.”
I dialled 999 but he had walked away so I stopped. However, he then immediately returned, tried to slam my phone out of my hand and also punched me on the side of my head.
I had never seen the attacker before at any event. All he knew about me was that I was connected to Jonathan who had, during the Q&A, tried to put forward Israel’s narrative. This attacker, who had just watched a film with multiple scenes of dead and mutilated men, women and children wanted to find someone to take it out on.
Why Have Jewish Organizations Been Silent About Otto Warmbier’s Death?
Otto Warmbier, an American student at the University of Virginia—who was active in Hillel and who went on Birthright, where he received a Hebrew name—died yesterday after being arrested and tortured by North Korea. You’d think that the cluster of handsomely funded Jewish organizations that fly the banner of promoting and protecting Jewish life in America and abroad would notice and acknowledge Warmbier’s murder. So far, though, American Jewish officialdom has been deafeningly silent.
The odious Anne Frank Center, whose disingenuous mission statement blathers on about a kinder and fairer world where Jewish children are safe from the death camps of tyrannical regimes, didn’t bother taking a break from bashing Donald Trump to lament a young Jew put to death by the world’s worst offender of human rights. Nor did the ADL, an organization quick to stand up with Linda Sarsour as she denied Jews their right to self-determination but not so swift when the victim was a young Jewish man whose crime was pulling a silly prank at his hotel while on a college tour of a nation that routinely starves, imprisons, and executes hundreds of thousands of its own citizens. Everywhere you turn today, you hear no one demanding justice for Otto Warmbier.
What you do hear are the howls of the social justice brigades, for whom Warmbier, being white and a man, is mostly to blame for his own murder. When the young college student was arrested last year, the regressive left’s flagships, from Salon to the blessedly defunct Nightly Show, gleefully mocked Warmbier, arguing that white privilege was the real reason for his predicament and suggesting that when it came to oppression, there was really no difference between Portland and Pyongyang. “The hopeless fear Warmbier is now experiencing,” opined a young blogger on the Huffington Post, “is my daily reality living in a country where white men like him are willfully oblivious to my suffering even as they are complicit in maintaining the power structures which ensure their supremacy at my expense.”
This sort of bigoted nonsense is toxic to all Americans, but it’s particularly hazardous to Jews, whose suffering is too often explained away these days as an acceptable byproduct of excessive power and influence. It’s precisely the kind of anti-Semitic bile Jewish organizations were founded to combat. Their silence throughout Warmbier’s ordeal and murder is shameful.
The West should listen to musical giant Yevgeny Kissin
But Kissin is different from other contemporary musicians, musical giants but moral dwarves, like Daniel Barenboim and Gustavo Dudamel. Kissin is publishing a book this week, “Memoirs and Reflections”, edited by Marina Arshinova. “I am a stunch supporter of Western values”, he told the Spectator, “but in recent years I have realized that the Western establishment has often betrayed those same values. And one of the manifestations of this betrayal is the stance against Israel."
This is the diametric opposite of what another music virtuoso has done, Daniel Barenboim, who, in the newspaper Haaretz has just explained that Israel was “given” to the Jewish people by a world with the sense of guilt after the Holocaust, making the Palestinian Arabs pay the price. “Memoirs and reflections” is an act of love for the third country adopted by Kissin, who defines himself as “a citizen of Russia, the West and Israel”. He writes of feeling “like an Israeli soldier in the international arena.”
Never mention Jeremy Corbyn's name in Kissin's presence. “My late uncle, Lord Kissin, must be turning in his grave.” He is referring to his uncle Harry Kissin, a Labout militant who fled Nazism.
Words no less harsh are those Kissin reserves for the European Union. “I certainly don’t like what has become of it,’ he says. ‘Having grown up in the former Soviet Union I am for the independence of states. A common market is one thing but political centralisation is something completely different which I do not like.”
When in London, at the Royal Albert Hall, when anti-Zionists interrupted Zubin Mehta's conducting of the Israeli Philharmonic Orchestra, Kissin told them: “When Israel’s enemies try to disrupt concerts of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra or the Jerusalem Quartet, I want them to come and make trouble at my concerts, too, because Israel’s case is my case, Israel’s enemies are my enemies, and I do not want to be spared the troubles which Israeli musicians encounter when they represent the Jewish state beyond its borders.”
Kissin attacked “the anti-Israel hysteria.” Bis, maestro! The Western establishment should go to his concerts and learn how to speak the truth.



Mark Regev: Clarity in fighting terrorism
This past Friday in Jerusalem, three Palestinian terrorists perpetrated a coordinated terror attack, using automatic weapons and knives. One of the terrorists lunged at 23-year-old Israeli border police officer Hadas Malka with a knife, severely wounding her. She later died.
Terror is ugly. It aims to perpetrate death and propagate fear. In order to fight this scourge, which has taken too many innocent lives in Israel, the United Kingdom, and across the world, we must begin by not shying away from naming and shaming those who enact it, and those who support it.
The Fatah movement – headed by President Mahmoud Abbas – rather than condemn Friday’s attack and take action to prevent future acts of terror instead chose to praise the terrorists as heroes. The Palestinian Authority, which Abbas leads, will now bestow generous salaries upon the terrorists and their families, thus creating an incentive for the next attack. Tellingly, the Fatah statement condemned not the attack in which Hadas Malka was killed, but the Israeli police officers who acted to neutralise the threat posed by the three armed terrorists.
Meanwhile, last Friday here in London a distinguished media outlet seemingly adopted this destructive narrative. The BBC headlined its article: ‘Three Palestinians killed after deadly stabbing in Jerusalem’. Corrections and apologies were swiftly made and published. Yet one cannot escape a feeling that some bias still persists, and more importantly, that not enough is being done by the media to call out terrorism for what it is. Troublingly, there appears in some quarters to be a distinction between ‘bad terrorism’ that targets the innocent in London and Manchester, and ‘other terrorism’ that targets innocent Israelis.
JPost Editorial: BBC misleads – again
In contrast, when terrorist attacks take place in London, Paris, Brussels, Berlin or other European locations, they are accurately described as precisely what they are: acts of terrorism.
As noted by BBC Watch, a group that monitors the BBC’s coverage of Israel-related stories, this moral equivalence between terrorist organizations and Israel is based on a distorted view of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. In response to a query on BBC’s policy of not using the terms terrorist or terrorism to describe violent attacks by Palestinians against Israelis but using it when the terrorist violence is perpetrated in Europe against Europeans, the BBC explained that, “Where there is an ongoing geopolitical conflict – as in the Middle East – to use the term “terror attack” or similar term might be seen as taking sides. There are those who might consider the actions of the Israeli government to be considered as terrorist acts.”
This reasoning is based on moral relativism and a refusal to compare the goals and values of Israeli society and its institutions with those of the terrorist groups that purposely target innocent civilians in an attempt to spread fear, coercion and intimidation. While Israel struggles to maintain a robust democracy, which happens to be a pretty attractive place to live for a foreign correspondent or anyone else, Hamas’s goal is to recreate its vision of a medieval caliphate. Fatah regularly glorifies terrorists and uses violence to repress criticism against the Palestinian Authority’s corrupt and undemocratic leadership.
What’s more, Britain is involved in training forces to fight ISIS in Syria and Iraq. So isn’t British society a valid target for disgruntled supporters of ISIS? For the BBC editors, it seems, the deaths of the three Palestinians are morally equivalent to the death of Hadas Malka and therefore just as newsworthy.
What is praiseworthy is BBC’s willingness to change the headline, even if only under pressure. Maybe deep down the BBC’s editors and reporters know that the moral equivalence between Israel and the Palestinians – whether it be Hamas in the Gaza Strip or Fatah in the West Bank – does not hold water.
SIGN OUR PETITION: Keep Holocaust Denier Kevin Barrett Out of Canada
Kevin Barrett, a notorious Holocaust denier from the United States, has accepted an invitation to address the Toronto al-Quds Day rally on June 24 at Queen’s Park, B’nai Brith Canada has learned.
In a bid to protect Canada from foreign hate mongers, B'nai Brith is now calling on you to sign our petition to the Canada Border Services Agency demanding that Barrett be barred from entering this country.
Barrett confirmed his plan to speak at Queen's Park on June 24 during his weekly conspiracy-theory radio show False Flag Weekly News, which he co-hosts with suspended University of Lethbridge professor and fellow Holocaust denier Anthony Hall.
Barrett left his teaching position at the University of Wisconsin, Madison in 2006 following revelations that he supported the false notion that the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks were an “inside job” coordinated by the U.S. Government and the State of Israel.
Since then, Barrett has repeatedly questioned the murder of six-million Jews by Nazi Germany and its allies during the Holocaust, denouncing what he calls “Holocaust Religion.” Barrett has also argued that widespread Holocaust denial in Muslim countries such as Morocco somehow confirms that the Holocaust was fabricated to promote “self-serving Zionist assertions.”
The al-Quds Day rally, originated by Ayatollah Khomeini, calls for the destruction of the Jewish State of Israel and in Toronto has featured incendiary speakers in the past. In 2013 and 2016, speakers Elias Hazineh and Ali Mallah called for Israelis to be shot, which lead to police investigations.
Guardian whitewashes extremism at London Al-Quds Day rally
The Guardian doesn’t ask what “misinformation and lies” the group is referring to, but it’s likely a reference to opposition to the rally by mainstream Jewish groups in the UK due to the extremist views expressed at past events, including ubiquitous calls for Israel’s annihilation.
Indeed, the concerns of British Jews were clearly vindicated, as reports and videos published by bloggers and activists attending this year’s counter-demo – documenting antisemitic rhetoric by al-Quds Day speakers – demonstrate.
Here’s a good compilation published by blogger David Collier:
Tellingly, the speech you heard somehow linking the ‘Zionists’ to the deadly fire in Grenfell, west London, and claiming “everyone knows that Zionist Israel and ISIS are the same” was actually given by the lead al-Quds Day organiser (and director of the Islamic Human Rights Commission) Nazim Ali.
The fact that the article completely omitted any mention of the extreme anti-Jewish rhetoric during al-Quds Day represents yet another example of the Guardian’s broader failure to acknowledge the antisemitism that is endemic within much of the pro-Palestinian movement.
IsraellyCool: The Telegraph’s Attempt To Make Tommy Corbyn’s Antisemitism Sound Cool
The Telegraph has a piece on Tommy Corbyn, son of UK Labor leader Jeremy Corbyn.
The entire piece attempts to pain young Corbyn as a cool heart-throb. So cool, in fact, that even his antisemitism is badass!
I kid you not. Their word, not mine.
No pin-up is complete without a side portion of badass. Have we mentioned his role in the Palestinian Solidarity Society? Last year, the group prompted national outcry for their production of Caryl Churchill’s Seven Jewish Children, a play shrouded in anti-semitic controversy.
Described by journalist Christopher Hart as ‘straight-jacketed, political orthodoxy,’ the 10-minute play consists of seven scenes set over 70 years in which a group of Jewish adults discuss how best to tell their children about modern Jewish history.
It prompted a vehement response from York’s Union of Jewish Students, who said at the time : “The decision to host the anti-semitic play Seven Jewish Children takes them beyond criticism of Israel and deep into the territory of anti-semitism.”
IsraellyCool: WATCH: High Quality Video Of Kay Wilson’s Magnificent Speech At Al Quds London Counter Protest
This is a new video of Kay’s complete speech in London last weekend at the counter protest against the Al Quds terror march – the speech that Dave already posted here. Huge thanks to Rebel Media for providing the high quality footage and Sussex Friends of Israel for some parts.
Kay Wilson Al Quds Counter Protest full speech June 18 2017, London


Al Quds speaker reported to police by CST
A prominent speaker at Sunday’s Al Quds Day march has been reported to the police over comments made during the demonstration, Jewish News understands.
It’s believed the Community Security Trust (CST) has complained to authorities about the Islamic Human Rights Commission leader Nazim Ali, over remarks made throughout the march.
The police told Jewish News they “Can confirm that we have received two allegations in relation to the Al Quds march on Sunday, 18 June. The allegations relate to flags displayed during the march and alleged anti-Semitic comments. Detectives from Westminster CID are investigating. There have been no arrests and enquiries continue.”
Ali, who introduced speakers during the Al Quds Day March, appeared to blame Grenfell Tower fire on Israel supporters. Addressing the 1,000 crowd at Grosvenor Square, he said: “Many innocents were murdered by Theresa May’s cronies – many of which are supporters of Zionist ideologies. Some of the biggest corporations who are supporting the Conservative Party are Zionists. They are responsible for the murder in Grenfell. The Zionist supporters of the Tory Party.”
Watch: BDS activists storm lecture by MK in Berlin
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.
UC-Irvine Jewish Student Leader: SJP Allegations of Sexism and Racism Against IDF Troops Who Visited Campus Are ‘Blatant Lies’
A student leader at the University of California-Irvine (UCI) has vigorously rejected allegations from the school’s Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) chapter that IDF soldiers who visited campus last month made racist and sexist comments to its members.
“These are blatant lies, a load of baloney,” Kevin Brum — founder and president of UCI’s Students Supporting Israel (SSI) — told The Algemeiner on Tuesday about claims published by Electronic Intifada of supposed discriminatory language and harassment aimed at SJP members by Israeli reservists who came to UCI for an educational program in early May.
“I asked them [the soldiers] about these allegations and they said it’s all made up,” Brum said. “Given how important these issues of sexual assault and racism are, I find it disgusting that SJP would make this up to fit their agenda.”
The five soldiers were brought UCI by the Reservists on Duty group during Israeli Apartheid Week and spent at least three days near SJP’s “apartheid wall,” talking with members of the student group and passersby about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The troops also led a Q&A session one evening, an event that ended in a police escort leading program attendees out of the building, after some 40 protesters — including members of SJP — shouted down the program and blocked the building’s main exit.
Anti-Israel Conspiracy Theories At A California College
Prof. Vida Samiian knew just whom she wanted to blame when the search to fill the Edward Said Professorship in Middle East Studies was suspended at California State University, Fresno. As she stated in an angry letter of resignation from the faculty, Samiian believed that the process had been derailed by "vicious and discriminatory attacks launched by Israel advocacy groups." She was unconvinced by the administration's explanation that the search had been ended solely due to "critical procedural errors" that violated the written policies of the Academic Senate. She charged instead that there had been an ongoing "campaign of harassment and intimidation of search committee members" by unidentified pro-Israel forces, intended to prevent the appointment of any of the four "superb finalists because of their Middle Eastern and Palestinian ethnicity."
The only thing missing from Samiian's powerful accusation was proof. Her lengthy resignation letter mentioned only three "inappropriate comments" by allegedly pro-Israel faculty members, one of whom is retired, and the claim of "intimidation" appears to have been based largely on criticism of Samiian's own outspoken support for the boycott of Israeli academic institutions. Samiian wrote that she was "sure the administration, especially the Deans and the Provost, received additional communications against the candidates and the search," but offered no specifics.
Fresno State's president, Joseph Castro, flatly denied Samiian's allegations. "No university official was pressured by any individual or group to cancel the search based on candidates' ethnic background or political point of view," he said in a video message. Rather, he explained, the search committee had not been properly elected by the relevant department, as required by Academic Senate regulations. In addition, an "unauthorized party was participating in the search committee's deliberations, and that this party was sharing perspectives influencing the committee, again a clear violation of our academic policy." (Samiian suspects that she herself was the "unauthorized party.")
Samiian's unfounded suspicion has taken on a life of its own, and it is now being repeated as an established fact by organizations critical of Israel. Jewish Voice for Peace, for example, circulated a letter stating that "Israel advocacy groups launched a campaign to cancel the search," which constituted a "serious violation of academic freedom." The JVP letter has been signed by hundreds of academics who apparently believe, without evidence, that the decision was "influenced by outside organizations with discriminatory agendas."
University of Houston Hillel ‘Very Concerned’ by Upcoming On-Campus National Students for Justice in Palestine Conference
The director of the University of Houston (UH) Hillel center told The Algemeiner on Tuesday he was “very concerned” by the announcement of a notorious national anti-Israel student group that it will hold its annual conference at the Texas campus.
Rabbi Kenny Weiss said he was worried about “the potential for increased BDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions) activity [on campus]” due to the National Students for Justice in Palestine (NSJP) event later this year.
Since NSJP’s announcement on Sunday that the conference will take place at UH — its first-ever gathering in the southern US — Weiss said he has been on the phone with student leaders, who have already left campus for summer break, and local groups.
“Our students are going to coordinate with each other, and with local and national origination to prepare a response, if any is warranted, and to strategize about our Israel advocacy for next year,” Weiss said
He has also contacted the school’s administration, hoping to secure a promise to provide whatever support Hillel might need, including the possibility for extra security during the conference, whose date has yet to be announced.
‘Devastating’ survey shows huge loss of Israel support among Jewish college students
More than a decade ago, a diverse focus group of Americans was asked to describe a typical Italian house. Words like “lush, food, cooking, maternal, welcoming” quickly rolled of the tongue. The same group was asked about an Israeli home and a very different vibe was described: “concrete, strict, ultra-religious, middle-aged ultra-Orthodox men.”
This 2005 focus group was commissioned to explore the underlying image of Israel in the American psyche. The unanimous perception was a conflict-driven country filled with religious fundamentalists.
Not exactly a country they were keen on visiting — or supporting.
The loose consortium of volunteer marketing and advertising executives who commissioned the study now falls under the Brand Israel Group (BIG) rubric. While each member of this heterogeneous Mad Men coalition had his or her own reasons for wishing to change Americans’ innate view of Israel, for Fern Oppenheim, co-founder of Brand Israel Group, her tipping point came after the September 11, 2001, World Trade Center attacks.
The child of Holocaust survivors, Oppenheim said she awoke from her sense of Jewish security that day. “I never thought I’d smell smoke living in New York,” she said in Jerusalem this week.
Jewish scholars defend Dartmouth professor who signed pro-BDS statement
A group of Jewish academics who oppose the boycott Israel movement decried a campaign against a Dartmouth professor who backed BDS, saying it has negatively impacted academic freedoms.
N. Bruce Duthu, an associate dean and faculty member in Native American studies at Dartmouth College, declined his nomination as dean of faculty earlier this year due to intense controversy over his past statements supporting the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions movement against Israel.
In response, eight members of the Alliance for Academic Freedom, a proponent of Liberal Zionism, noted Monday in an opinion piece in Inside Higher Education that while Duthu signed a petition supporting academic boycotts of Israel, he “embraced” Dartmouth’s official opposition to academic boycotts and pledged to continue to do so as dean of the faculty.
Pro-Israel critics of Duthu, the op-ed writers suggested, treated Duthu “unfairly” and did a disservice to “the cause of Jewish studies [and] Israel studies.”
IsraellyCool: Roger Waters’ Album Blocked In Italy Over Alleged Copyright Infringement
Rock’n’roll BDS-hole Roger Waters has been accused of copyright infringement.
Fans of Roger Waters living in Italy will not be able to enjoy his epic new work, Is This the Life We Really Want?, for some time, following an alleged copyright claim. Italian artist Emilio Isgrò believes that Waters infringed upon his “erasure technique” with the artwork for the new album.
Repubblica reports ,and as Rockol points out, Isgrò says the cover art, which features a body of text redacted with black ink, leaving only the album title, copies his trademark “erasure” technique. A judge in Milan has blocked all sales until a court can hear the case on June 27.

How does it feel knowing your fans are prevented from appreciating your work, Roger?
Is Gal Gadot's Casting as Wonder Woman a 'Slap' in the Face of Palestinian Women?
Of course, writer Malik Ahmed Khan is referring to the 2014 Israel-Gaza conflict, which he refers to as a "massacre." Khan conveniently leaves out that the conflict arose directly in response to Palestinian acts such as the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teenagers. The IDF launched a raid to arrest militant leaders, and the oh-so-peaceful Palestinians responded by launching rockets into Israel.
It was a prime example of the phrase, "Don't start nothing, there won't be nothing."
It was a shame so many civilians were killed, but not surprising. After all, Hamas was reportedly hiding among civilians, making it almost impossible for the IDF to not hit civilians in their response.
Again, Khan leaves that tidbit out.
Of course, whether this was due to maliciousness or simple incompetence is less clear than I would normally assume due to the final paragraph.
We cannot forget that female empowerment cannot exclude women who are being oppressed by structures of power that go beyond their gender. We must strive to fight patriarchy in all forms and shapes. However, we can also not let the message of female empowerment in our countries be hijacked by images that can further hurt those who are oppressed. Our fight against patriarchal structures cannot exclude members of communities that are also disenfranchised.
I'm sorry, but the idea of a Pakistani writer talking about "fighting patriarchy" is laughable. After all, his own nation has women in a constant state of subjugation, much like the rest of the Muslim world.
Either Khan is a complete moron, or he is using the language of intersectionality to hide his religiously inspired partisanship. Right now, I'm thinking this might be a time to embrace the power of the word, "and" rather than "or."
Huffington Post Does Not Recognize Vehicle-Ramming Terrorist Attacks Against Israel
In the wake of the recent ramming attack in London, the Huffington Post features a nearly 2 minute video on vehicle ramming attacks as a new form of terrorism. The video states "Here are the vehicle attacks that have occurred in the last year" and then it shows footage of attacks in London, Nice, Berlin and Stockholm. There is no mention of several vehicle attacks in Israel over the past year.
All told there have been over 60 ramming attacks by Palestinians against Israelis.
The Huffington Post has a long and disturbing history of anti-Israel articles, opinion pieces and on-line commenting. The failure of this featured video to even recognize the occurrence of terrorist attacks against Israel is a striking example of implicit bigotry and dehumanization of Jews. The implication is that Israeli victims of terrorism do not deserve recognition or the humanitarian empathy bestowed upon European victims.
This continues a troubling pattern where the British media does not acknowledge ramming attacks against Israelis.
BBC’s Knell promotes more Hamas messaging on Qatar crisis
The BBC of course has a long record of under-reporting the relevant story of Hamas’ known misappropriation of construction materials for the purpose of terrorism and in this article readers find only the following poorly composed and unnecessarily qualified statement:
“Israel says Hamas has also used foreign funding to bolster its military infrastructure, which its blockade aims to keep from strengthening.”
Knell also erases from audience view the root cause of both the border restrictions and past conflicts: Hamas terrorism.
“Nevertheless, Qatar’s initiatives have buoyed Hamas through difficult times – the tight border restrictions imposed by both Israel and Egypt, and three bloody conflicts with Israel.”
The very least that the BBC’s funding public would expect to find in a report concerning accusations of “fostering terrorism” by Qatar is an accurate and factual overview of the terror activities of one of its prime protégés. Both of Knell’s recent reports from the Gaza Strip fail to provide that information but do uncritically promote messaging that could just as easily be found in a Hamas press release.
According to its public purposes the BBC is supposed to provide its funding public with “accurate and impartial news, current affairs and factual programming of the highest editorial standards” in order to enhance their understanding of a particular story. In this case, that purpose is clearly not being met.
EU justice minister: progress made in fighting antisemitism on social media
The European Union has made a “big improvement” in motivating social media giants to combat antisemitism on their platforms, EU Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality Vera Jourova told The Jerusalem Post on Monday.
Jourova spoke to the Post leading up to her visit to Israel that begins on Thursday and ends next week as part of the 11th EU-Israel seminar on Combating Racism, Xenophobia and Antisemitism.
While noting that “antisemitism is on the rise in Europe,” she said the EU was trying to stop this “with a code of conduct which information technology companies adopted,” obligating them to “swiftly take down hate speech online and on social media.”
Facebook, Twitter and YouTube (run by Google) are all signed on to the initiative.
Next, she was asked about claims that the EU and social media giants often look the other way when antisemitic posts are dressed up as anti-Israel posts to make them look like political speech.
Rising British antisemitism a threat to Jews everywhere
In a recent article, Isi Leibler presented a grim picture of the predicament of Great Britain’s Jews. The threat to the well-being and safety of that community is real, and he suggests the threat may be worse than at any time since 1656 when Jews returned to that country after having been expelled in 1290. The need for Jews in that country to hide their identity and provide armed guards for Jewish facilities and events has reached a critical point.
Leibler thinks that immigrating to Israel will be considered a living option by greater numbers than before, but does not expect that to be the option chosen by most Jews in Britain.
Attacks upon Jews have been increasing, but the large vote in favor of the British Labour Party is really the ominous sign. The leader of that party, Jeremy Corbyn, came dangerously close to ousting Prime Minister Theresa May. He is a clear friend of Hamas and is a terrorist partisan. His surging popularity therefore suggests an imbalanced and negative attitude on the part of the British population toward Israel, and following that, hostility toward the Jewish People.
Despite disclaimers by many of Israel’s enemies, anti-Zionism or anti-Israel movements, programs and policies are deeply antisemitic in intent, and represent a threat to Jews living outside of Israel. Imagine this: despite 69 years of sovereignty, despite thousands of years of claims to the Holy Land, Israel is still trying to “prove” its right to exist to people throughout the world. In fact, such “proof-of-Israel’s-right-to-exist-as-a-nation” would be laughable were it not in fact proof 1) of the sinfulness of the human race, 2) a perverse and neurotic denial of history and 3) a sign of the intense violence – even of a “death wish” as Sigmund Freud suggested – that is deeply embedded in the human psyche.
Antisemitism is clearly alive and well in Great Britain, and throughout the world.
Israeli-born man makes halal nail polish for Muslims
It took an Israeli-born cosmetics entrepreneur to create a halal-certified nail polish that’s “kosher” for practicing Muslims.
Orly, a nail polish company founded by Israeli-born Jeff Pink, collaborated with website MuslimGirl.com to create #HalalPaint, a capsule collection of six nail polish colors that cater to Muslim women.
“This line is important because there are so many girls and young women who aren’t represented in mainstream beauty,” said Azmia Magane, MuslimGirl.com chief of staff, in a press release. “They either don’t fit that definition or see things about them that are designed without them, instead of for them and by them. This is our way of bridging that gap.”
Some Muslim women avoid wearing nail polish for religious reasons.
The polish creates a barrier on their nails against water, which is a problem when performing “wudu,” the ritual ablution done before prayer, when water must touch every part of the body.
Japanese telecom giant invests $100m. in Israeli cybersecurity firm
Israeli cybersecurity firm Cybereason has raised $100 million from Japanese telecommunications giant SoftBank Corp, the company announced on Wednesday.
Cybereason secured SoftBank's investment in the firm's fourth financing round, all in all bringing total investments to $189m. in the past two years. Based in Boston with a research and development center in Tel Aviv and offices in London and Tokyo, Cybereason provides automated cyber attack endpoint detection and response.
“We are thrilled with our incredible growth but we are never satisfied because hackers still have a big advantage over the vast majority of corporations," said Lior Div, co-founder and CEO of Cybereason. "This new funding allows us to increase our growth through new distribution channels and to develop new technologies. Our strengthened partnership with SoftBank, which has a formidable sales force and enterprise customer base in Japan and a global reach, will also enable us to further expand our presence in the cybersecurity market."
Founded by veterans of the IDF's 8200 intelligence unit, Cybreason offers endpoint detection and response, as well as next-generation antivirus and managed monitoring services. The Cybereason interface provides companies with a custom, built-in memory graph, which automatically detects behavioral patterns across every endpoint and surfaces malicious operations, according to the firm.
Einstein letters on God, Israel, physics fetch $210,000
Letters written by Albert Einstein about God, Israel and physics fetched nearly $210,000 at a Jerusalem auction Tuesday, with the highest bid going to a missive about God’s creation of the world.
Eight letters, written in English between 1951 and 1954 and signed by Einstein, were sold by Winners auction house, which had initially estimated their combined value at between $31,000 and $46,000.
The highest bid of $84,000 was for a letter to eminent physicist David Bohm.
In it Einstein wrote: “If God has created the world his primary worry was certainly not to make its understanding easy for us.” It was written in February 1954, a year before his death.
In another missive to Bohm, which sold for $50,400, Einstein discussed the link his colleague made between quantum theory and “relativistic field theory”.
Discovery of Hidden Text Prompts New Approach to Biblical Digs in Israel
The recent discovery of a previously invisible inscription on the back of an ancient pottery shard — which had been on display at Jerusalem’s Israel Museum for more than 50 years — has prompted Tel Aviv University researchers to consider what other hidden inscriptions may have been discarded during archaeological digs, before the use of high-tech imaging.
The ancient shard in question was discovered in poor condition at the desert fortress of Arad in 1965; it dates back to 600 BC, before Judah’s kingdom was destroyed by the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar. Its discovery added to knowledge about the First Temple period in Israel.
Arie Shaus, of Tel Aviv University’s Department of Applied Mathematics — and one of the principal researchers who studied the artifact — told JNS.org, “The front side of the shard was thoroughly studied, and it begins with some kind of standard letter opening, with one person blessing another using the name of God, ‘Y-H-W-H.’”
Shaus explained that this use of sacred language, although a “small detail,” is “interesting and important” because it shows the Jewish religion and laws currently used by modern Jews “are a bit different to what was practiced back then.”
The fact that Jews living in Israel 2,600 years ago could “freely” write the full spelling of God’s name differs from modern Jewish law, which forbids the practice.
Israel plans to woo Hollywood productions with special grants
A new initiative by the Finance Ministry aims to turn Israel into a desirable location for the biggest Hollywood producers, Israel Hayom learned over the weekend.
Formulated by MK Michael Oren, deputy minister for foreign policy in the Prime Minister's Office, the plan would have Israel establish a new government body to attract big-budget productions by wooing them with sizable grants.
Oren came up with the plan after commissioning a professional survey from international consulting firm KPMG.
The plan, dubbed "Holy-wood" -- a play on Israel's status as the Holy Land and the name of the capital of the American film industry -- outlines three steps Israel should pursue if it wants to compete with other Middle Eastern film locations, which gain hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue from hosting big-budget productions.
The first and most challenging step would be to establish a film authority in the Finance Ministry comprising representatives of all the relevant bodies involved in the process of obtaining the necessary permits to film in Israel.
Amazon buys Israeli TV show
The story of a Yemenite family who own a bakery in Bat Yam is about to go international.
Amazon Studios has picked up the global rights to the Israeli comedy Lihiyot Ita, which goes by the name The Baker and the Beauty in English.
The TV show, whose second season is currently airing in Israel, will be available to viewers in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide.
Amazon will stream the original version of the show, with subtitles suited to each region.
The show, created by Assi Azar, follows the life of Amos Dahari, who works in his family business and lives with his parents, and Noa Hollander, an international supermodel and heir to a family hotel fortune.
The pair, of course, meet cutely and fall madly in love, despite their hugely different backgrounds. With Amos’s entertaining and interfering family and Noa’s demanding career, things get both prickly and hilarious.
Adaptation of Award-Winning Israeli Film to Open on Broadway this Fall
A Broadway musical based on the multiple award-winning Israeli film “The Band’s Visit” is set to open on Broadway this fall, with previews scheduled to begin October 7 at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre in New York City’s theater district.
The 2007 film depicts an Egyptian police band that arrives in Israel to play a concert in the Tel Aviv suburb of Petah Tikva but ends up stranded in a remote desert town called Beit HaTikva by mistake. The sweet story unfolds as the wary travelers are forced to depend on the kindness of Israeli locals to put them up for the night.
American playwright Itamar Moses and composer David Yazbek (“The Full Monty”) adapted the film, which was written and directed by Israeli screenwriter and director Eran Kolirin and won numerous awards from the Israeli Film Academy and international film festivals.
Last December, the musical won eight awards for its critically acclaimed four-week run off-Broadway, and is nominated for seven Drama Desk awards. It was directed by David Cromer, choreographed by Patrick McCollum and starred Tony Shalhoub, John Cariani and Katrina Lenk. Cromer and McCollum will reprise their roles in the Broadway version as well. The cast has not yet been announced.
El Al welcomes Britney to Israel with ‘Toxic’ spoof
El Al Airlines is pulling out all the stops to welcome Britney Spears, who will be arriving in Israel on the Jewish state’s national carrier for her July 3 concert in Tel Aviv.
In a music video ad released Tuesday, flight attendants from the Israeli airline paid tribute to the Princess of Pop, lip-syncing Spears’s hit song, “Toxic” on a plane.
El Al employees were spoofing the celebrity singer’s original 2009 music video for the song, in which she dressed as a flight attendant, though their version was notably less risque.
Britney will be performing a one-night show in Tel Aviv’s Hayarkon Park as part of her upcoming world tour. Local music producers have been working to bring Spears to Israel since last year, and the performance is set to cost more than $2 million.



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