Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Poland honors satirist who said Jews create antisemitism

Via Jerusalem Post:
A Polish satirist who in 2016 made anti-Semitic jokes on television and later accused Jews of fomenting hatred against themselves was awarded his country’s highest distinction for artists.

Ryszard Makowski, 62, was awarded the Gloria Artis Medal for Merit to Culture on Thursday along with 20 others by Culture Minister Piotr Gliński in Warsaw, the w Polityce news website reported. Makowski won the bronze medal, the lowest of three categories in the distinction awarded annually to artists by the ministry.

“It is an expression of thanks by Poland for your creativity and for your commitment, for your talent – that is always augmented with work, perseverance, creative courage,” Gliński said in presenting the award.
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Germany, online anti-Semitism is going mainstream, study finds

Via The Times of Israel:
A long-awaited study by internationally renowned anti-Semitism expert Monika Schwarz-Friesel has found that the amount of German anti-Semitic content on the internet has grown massively in the last 10 years, permeates mainstream society, and is increasingly extreme.

Released Wednesday, the research project studied 300,000 pieces of German internet content between 2014 and 2018, with a focus on social media. During the first year of the study, slightly less than 23 percent of the content was classified as anti-Semitic. In 2017, this number had jumped to over 30%.

A similar study conducted by Schwarz-Friesel in 2007 found only 7.5% of the internet content examined to be anti-Semitic, indicating an increase of more than 22% over the last decade. 
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Germany: Jewish Professor Calls Police After Alleged Anti-Semitic Attack, Cops Beat Him Instead

Via Newsweek:
A visiting professor from an American university was allegedly thrown to the ground and beaten by police in Germany after being attacked by a civilian who asked him if he was Jewish.

Johns Hopkins Philosophy Professor Yitzhak Melamed gave a keynote lecture on Wednesday at the prestigious Bonn University after reportedly being punched by German police. The police were originally contacted to address a man in a park who Melamed said attempted to hurt him after the man asked if Melamed was Jewish.

Melamed was with Bonn University professor Dr. Lina Steiner at Bonn Hofgarten park when he says he was approached by a man who asked if he was Jewish and then identified himself as a Palestinian. In a Facebook post on Friday, Melamed said the man threw his kippah, a small head cover worn by Jewish men, to the ground multiple times before the man began to push him.

Melamed said he heard the civilian shout “no Jews in Germany” before the man walked circles in the park and attempted to hurt him. Melamed said police arrived 20 minutes after the initial call was placed. The attacker began to run away, at which point 50-year-old Melamed ran after him, to show officers the direction in which his attacker was headed.

Melamed said the attack that followed—police holding him down and hitting him “with a few dozen" punches—only stopped after he repeatedly attempted to shout in English that he was the wrong man, according to a report by the General Anzeiger.

Melamed said he was bleeding when he initially tried to file a complaint against the German police. The police, who said in a statement that the professor resisted arrest, also said Melamed initiated the incident by touching an officer’s hand.

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France: Are the Jews of France doomed?

Via The Algemeiner (Shmuley Boteach):
"For all the reports that we American and Israeli Jews read about growing French antisemitism, especially emanating from sectors of the Muslim community, and for all the reports of French Jews wanting to either make aliyah to Israel or emigrate to Canada, French Jewry is still thriving.  
What has changed is that it’s becoming more and more subterranean. Yes, you can still find large numbers of synagogues, kosher restaurants, and Jewish community centers. What you don’t see on the streets, however, is Jews. Or you see them, but you don’t necessarily know they are Jews. Overt, identifiable symbols of Jewishness — like a kippa, Magen David, or tzitzit — are disappearing from French streets and cities."
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Austria: State May Require Jews to Register to Buy Kosher Meat

Via Haaretz:
A regional politician in Austria defended a plan to limit access to kosher meat, conditioning its sale on permits that would be individually issued to observant Jews.

The Wiener Zeitung daily reported Tuesday about the draft decree in the state of Lower Austria, one of nine states that make up the federal Republic of Austria. Gottfried Waldhäusl, the cabinet minister in the state government of Lower Austria who is in charge of animal welfare and several other portfolios, defended the plan as necessary “from an animal welfare point of view.”

Oskar Deutsch, the president of the Jewish Community in Vienna, warned that, in practice, the plan would require compiling a list of Jews, which he called “like a negative Aryan clause,” referencing racist laws passed by Nazi Germany and implemented in Austria after its merger with Germany in 1938. 

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Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Germany: Group of men attacks German Jew wearing Israeli pin and kippa

Via The Jerusalem Post (Benjamin Weinthal):
A large group of men attacked a 17-year-old German Jew who wore an Israeli pin and kippah on Friday night in what the police believe was an antisemitic attack.  
Media in the German city of Dusseldorf reported that some 10 men of “North African or Mediterranean” appearance pushed the young Jewish man, causing painful injuries. The men also insulted the youth, whose name was not published in German media reports.  According to the police, the suspects are between the ages of 18 and 23.  
Israel’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon tweeted in response to The Jerusalem Post story: “Those are not just separate and distinct events. It’s a pattern, a pattern of antisemitic attacks by Muslim migrants against the members of the Jewish community, just because they are Jewish. It is unacceptable anywhere, and doubly so in Germany.”  
Michael Szentei-Heise,the executive director of the Jewish community in Dusseldorf, told the WAZ daily newspaper that the attack showed, “For the safety of Jewish citizens in Germany it is catastrophic.”
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Sunday, July 15, 2018

French Ambassador: Israel should protect Gaza border 'without killing'

Via The Jerusalem Post:
"There are extremely violent protests in France [as well]", said French ambassador to Israel Hélène Le Gal in an interview with Maariv when asked what would France do if it had to deal with similar security concerns as Israel does, "and yet nobody is killed."

The interview was published on Friday ahead of Bastille Day (July 14'th). Le Gal discussed the French position regarding the American peace program, Iran, and the strong relations France and Israel enjoy.
Yohann Taïeb ( replied that on October 26, 2014, Rémi Fraisse, a 21-year-old botanist, was killed by French police during violent protests against the construction of a dam at Sivens.

Columnist and blogger Véronique Chemla tweeted:
"These are not "protests" in the Gaza Strip: no banners, no flyers, etc. It's the pursuit of jihad with the intent to kill the Yahoud (Jews).

Friday, July 13, 2018

EU ambassador summoned for a reprimand for "interfering with Israeli legislation"

Via EJP:
"It is not enough that the EU finances NGOs that strive to undermine the State of Israel and finance illegal is now interfering with Israeli legislation. Apparently they do not understand that Israel is a sovereign state."

This was the wording of a press statement issued late Thursday by the Israeli Prime Minister Media Advisor informing that he has instructed the Foreign Ministry Director General to summon the EU Ambassador to Israel, Emanuele Giaufret, for a second reprimand and that "he also intends to take additional steps."

The diplomatic reprimand follows a report that the ambassador had lobbied members of the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, to vote against a bill being advanced by the Likud-led coalition government to enshrine Israel’s status as the nation-state of the Jewish people.

The European Union is pressuring Israel not to pass the law, claiming one of the clauses is "racist," and if passed would harm Israel’s international standing.
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Greece: Jewish cemetery memorial in Thessaloniki vandalized

Via Watch Antisemitism in Europe:

A monument on the campus of Thessaloniki’s Aristotle University (AUT) which commemorates a Jewish cemetery destroyed by the Nazis was targeted by vandals on Tuesday, the second time in two weeks.

The perpetrators daubed blue paint and painted a cross on the monument.

“Today, unknown individuals vandalized the monument to the [old] Jewish cemetery on the university campus. We restored the monument and we condemn the unacceptable action,” the university said in a press release, adding that “the solution to religious fanaticism and bigotry” is education.
read more @ Against Antisemitism

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Sweden: Caught between jihadists and neo-Nazis, Jews fear for their future

Via JTA (Cnaan Liphshiz):
When Carinne Sjoberg dissolved the Jewish Community of Umea in northern Sweden, she knew it would send shockwaves far beyond the small congregation that she had spent decades building.

The move in May owed to intimidation by neo-Nazis, making it the first time in decades that a Jewish organization in Western Europe acknowledged that it felt compelled to close shop over safety concerns.

Neo-Nazis from the Nordic Resistance Movement, beginning in 2016, pasted stickers with fascist imagery on Umea’s Jewish community center, “making the place look like after Kristallnacht,” Sjoberg said. The closure followed surveillance activity on the center by the neo-Nazis, who published details about individual visitors.

“I didn’t take it lightly,” Sjoberg, a 56-year-old Jewish mother of two, told JTA about the decision to close. “I hate giving neo-Nazis this victory. But I can’t bear the responsibility for people’s lives, not under such threats,” she said of her city’s Jewish community of 70 people.

The closure caused a national uproar. Amid intense media coverage in Sweden of the affair, Prime Minister Stefan Löfven mentioned it in a speech denouncing anti-democracy forces in his country.

But the indignation did little to change the fact that in Sweden, Muslim extremism and the far right are part of a broader set of challenges to Jewish communal life. So while the Jewish community of Stockholm may be growing, the problems are nonetheless causing some Swedish Jews to fear for their future as a minority here.

“We have a vibrant community in Stockholm but even here we face multiple threats, from Muslim extremism to far-right violence,” said Aron Verstandig, president of the Council of Swedish Jewish Communities — an umbrella group with approximately 6,000 members out of Sweden’s estimated 20,000 Jews.
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France: A double whammy for the Jews of France

Via JNS (Lyn Julius):
France does not want to admit that its terrorism problem has ideological roots. It prefers to blame economic grievances, despair or mental illness.

The sun may have been shining, but these are dark days for the Jews of France. They have sustained a double whammy.

The first is that the murderer of Sarah Halimi, who shouted “Allah Hu Akbar” as he tortured and hurled the Orthodox Jew to her death from her balcony in April 2015, may not even stand trial. Kobili Traore has been declared “mentally incapable” by a panel of psychiatrists. After months of foot-dragging by the judge, the panel has reversed the findings of an earlier evaluation, which had retained the charge of anti-Semitism as an “aggravating circumstance.”

The second blow delivered to the Jewish community concerns the shoddy treatment of French historian and director of the Paris Holocaust memorial Georges Bensoussan. Over the last three years, Bensoussan has been fighting charges of “Islamophobia” and incitement to hatred against Muslims. In a television debate, he had said that Arab anti-Semitism was endemic, quoting the words of an Algerian sociologist that “Arabs sucked in antisemitism with their mother’s milk.”

Thus far, Bensoussan has been acquitted in the French courts. But his reward has been to be unceremoniously dismissed from his job after 25 years of faithful service. His contract had still had two years to run, but the lock to his office was changed. When he was eventually allowed in to collect his possessions, a minder looked over his shoulder.
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Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Germay: Teens fire antisemitic insults at local rabbi

Via Algemeiner:
A Chabad-Lubavitch emissary in Offenbach, Germany, was the victim of a verbal assault on his way to synagogue this past weekend by a group of teenagers.

“They shouted, ‘sh**ty Jew’ and ‘Free Palestine’ and other things at me,” Rabbi Menachem Mendel Gurevitch wrote in a post on Facebook. The incident took place on Friday afternoon when Gurevitch, 39, was on his way to pray. He said he does not hide his Jewish identity, despite increasingly frequent antisemitic attacks in Europe.

“Usually, I ignore things like this, but this time I couldn’t, so I decided to try and talk to them. But the more I talked, the more they shouted at me,” he wrote.

This was not the first time that Gurevitch, director of Chabad Lubavitch of Offenbach am Main, has come under attack. Five years ago he was assaulted by a group of teens who started screaming antisemitic slurs at him. After that incident, a group of local residents organized a meeting with the assailants and they apologized.

“Offenbach is a good city, but antisemitism is becoming normalized and standard. I get ‘compliments’ like these often,” he told the local news site Hessenschau.

“My children don’t want to walk with me if I’m wearing a kippah,” he added, saying that his children hide their own kippahs under hats when they are outside, “because they’re scared.”
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Tuesday, July 10, 2018

France keeps blackening Israel and is the most dangerous country in Europe for Jews

Via Algemeiner (Manfred Gerstenfeld):
(…) When Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met Macron in Paris in April, the French president told him that the relocation of the US Embassy to Jerusalem “led to people dying and did not advance peace.” With this transparently manipulative statement Macron showed his skills in distorting the truth in a few words. What provoked the violence was the terror organization Hamas’ initiative to send civilians to the border and mix terrorists among them. Among the more than 115 Gazans killed by Israel, more than half were confirmed terrorists. That many of those killed were terrorists was confirmed by Hamas itself.

France also supported an UN Security Council resolution which called for protective measures for Palestinians, but didn’t mention Hamas. Deputy Israeli Minister Michael Oren summarized it in a tweet: “Shame on France for supporting it. French government cannot say it’s against anti-Semitism and vote for this anti-Semitic resolution.”

During the violence in April, France urged Israel to show restraint and told Israel that it was its duty to protect civilians. Their spokesmen knew full well that Hamas had sent terrorists to mingle among the civilians and that many civilian demonstrators did not have peaceful intentions. This French behavior was in particular hypocritical because of the many deadly terrorist attacks by Arabs in their country. The most deadly took place in Paris in 2015 and resulted in 130 deaths. In 2016, 86 people were killed in Nice.

When the IDF Spokesperson Brig. Gen. Ronen Manelis spoke to French parliamentarians this month, he reminded them that along with other countries, French donations had helped Hamas to build terror capabilities.

French reactions to the Gaza violence have deep roots in Middle Eastern history. In 2008, David Pryce-Jones published his book, Betrayal: France, the Arabs and the Jews. He had access to the archives of the French Foreign Ministry, better known as the Quai d’Orsay. His conclusion can be summarized as: France throughout modern history has done more damage to the Middle East than any other country. (…)

There are other aspects which should be taken into account when judging the French blackening statements of Israel. France is the most dangerous country in Europe for Jews. Of the fifteen Jews killed for ideological reasons in Europe — of which the perpetrators, all Muslims, are known — twelve were murdered in France in six different attacks. The two mass attacks by violent Muslims on synagogues in the EU were both carried out in France, in Paris and Sarcelles. [Also,  Frenchman Mehdi Nemmouche perpetrated an attack at the Jewish Museum in Brussels in 2014, which left four dead.]

Frequently exposing the ongoing French hypocritical blackening of Israel is unlikely to stop it, but it may make it less worthwhile for the country’s official perpetrators.
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Switzerland: Knife-wielding man attacks Jewish family in Zurich

Via Arutz Sheva:
An Orthodox Jewish family was attacked by a man carrying a knife in Zurich, Switzerland over the weekend, local news outlets have reported.  
According to a report by the Zurich-based Blick newspaper, the incident occurred Saturday evening in Zurich’s 3rd district, when a man carrying a knife lunged at an Orthodox Jewish family. When his would-be victims fled, the attacker chased after them, hurling anti-Semitic curses as he pursued them.

The attacker was later arrested and transferred for questioning, Zurich police said.

A report by LOOK claimed that the incident began in a playground, when the attacker began staring at a group of children.

When the children’s father, approached the man and asked if he needed any help, the “guy reacted very aggressively and stood up in front of me,” the father said.

“I didn’t want any trouble, so I took my kids and left.”

The Jewish man and his family returned home, believing that was the end of the matter.

When they stepped out half an hour later, however, to go to synagogue, the man was waiting for them, carrying a knife.

The family attempted to quickly walk away from the man carrying the knife, but the attacker “suddenly started sprinting towards us,” the father said.
A passerby, who is also a member of the local Jewish community, later managed to subdue the attacker until police came.

The assailant has been identified as a “local man”, who police say is neither a radical Muslim nor a known member of any neo-Nazi movement.

Police held the suspect overnight, but freed him on Sunday.
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Monday, July 9, 2018

Germany: Police arrested 10 people over alleged anti-Semitic attack in Berlin

Via The Times of Israel:
German police arrested 10 people Sunday over an alleged anti-Semitic attack in a Berlin park.

The group, aged between 15 and 25, including three women, were detained following the assault in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Police did not give the names or nationalities of the suspects or the victim, but German daily Welt reported that all involved are Syrians.

Police said the victim had approached the group in a park to borrow a lighter, but his cigarette was snatched away.

The 25-year-old was wearing a chain with a Star of David, which police said was ripped from the victim’s neck by one of the men, while spewing “anti-Semitic insults.”  
The attacker allegedly repeatedly punched the victim in the face, before fleeing. The victim was treated in a hospital after suffering cuts to the head.
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