Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Ireland’s Boycott-Israel Bill violates EU and international law and will dmage trade with the U.S.

Via Mosaic Magazine:
Yesterday the Irish Senate considered a measure that would make it a crime—punishable by up to five years in prison—for citizens or corporations to do business with Israelis in the West Bank, eastern Jerusalem, or the Golan Heights. (Voting on the bill has been postponed until a later date.) Orde Kittrie writes:
The senator who introduced the bill, Frances Black, previously signed a letter calling for a boycott of all Israeli products and services. While the bill does not mention Israel or Palestine by name, Black and its other sponsors have announced that it was designed to . . . prohibit Irish transactions relating to Israeli settlers and settlements. . . . The bill would punish Irish citizens and residents, as well as companies incorporated in Ireland, that engage in such transactions, regardless of whether the violation occurs in or outside Ireland. . . . .
[The] bill, if enacted, would be inconsistent with EU and international law. For example, the EU has exclusive competence for the common commercial policy, and member states are not permitted to adopt unilateral restrictions on imports into the EU.
The bill is also inconsistent with the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade, the international agreement covering trade in goods. . . . [Furthermore, it] would gravely undermine Ireland’s economic links to the United States, which are vital to Irish prosperity. U.S. investment in 2016 accounted for 67 percent of all foreign direct investment in Ireland. Yet this bill would make U.S. companies with subsidiaries in Ireland, Irish companies with subsidiaries in the U.S., and their employees who are Irish or reside in Ireland choose between violating Irish law or violating the U.S. Export Administration regulations [which forbid participation in such boycotts]. . . . These companies would also be forced by Irish law to run afoul of some or all of the two-dozen U.S. state laws that impose sanctions on companies that boycott Israel.
read more @ The Hill 

France: Jewish boy, 8, beaten in Paris suburb in antisemitic attack

Via Jerusalem Post:
 A Jewish boy was beaten by teen-age assailants in a suburb of Paris in what French prosecutors are calling an antisemitic attack.

The boy, 8, was wearing a kippa while walking to a tutor on Tuesday afternoon in the Paris suburb of Paris when two assailants, about 15 years old, knocked him to the ground and beat him, the French news agency AFP reported.
It is the second attack on a Jewish child in the same area this month. On January 10, a 15-year-old Jewish girl was slashed in the face while walking home from school, wearing the uniform of her Jewish private school.

French President Emmanuel Macron condemned the incident Tuesday night on Twitter. “An 8-year-old boy was attacked today in Sarcelles. Because he was wearing a kippa. Every time a citizen is attacked because of his age, his appearance or his religion, the whole country is being attacked,” Macron tweeted.

He added: “And it is the whole country that stands, especially today, alongside the French Jews to fight each of these despicable acts, with them and for them.”

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Polish journalist: Jews also took part in the Holocaust

Via Ynet News:
A Polish TV host has suggested that World War II death camps in Poland be referred to as “Jewish death camps” instead of Polish or German, while a journalist intimated on his program that Jews played a part in the Nazi Final Solution.

The comments have fanned the flames that have already mildly burned relations between Warsaw and Jerusalem after the Polish parliament recently moved to pass legislation that Israel has argued is an attempt to downplay Poland’s role in Nazi atrocities.

The guest of the program aired by TVP2 also slammed Israel for its vociferous opposition to the bill, which prescribes prison time for defaming the Polish nation by using phrases such as "Polish death camps" to refer to the killing sites Nazi Germany operated in occupied Poland during World War II.

“This narrative is built out of contempt for the facts,” argued Marcin Jerzy Wolski who hosts the Polish public mainstream TV channel operated by TVP.

Discussing an experiment carried out in Germany in which exhaust fumes were pumped into rooms containing monkeys and humans, Wloski and the conservative commentator and author Rafal Aleksander Ziemkiewicz digressed into a conversation about Jews in the Holocaust, gas chambers and how the Nazis improvised as they searched for more efficient methods to murder European Jewry.

The two then segued into an attack of Israeli criticism against the new bill and the “claims” that Poles participated in the Holocaust. Ziemkiewicz also slammed the notion of blaming nations for the actions of individuals.

“Don’t be surprised if someone teaches that the Jewish people crucified Jesus or participated in the Holocaust,” he said. “If we look at the percentage of involvement of countries that took part, Jews also were part of their own destruction.”

Wolski responded by saying: “Using this terminology, linguistically, we could say these were not German or Polish camps, but were Jewish camps. After all, who dealt with the crematoria?”

Taking the theory further, Ziemkiewicz asked: “And who died in them? Jews. History has been forgotten. Instead of history there is a narrative that serves political and other interests. This narrative is built out of contempt for facts.”

A few hours before the program, Ziemkiewicz published on Twitter an anti-Semitic post before deleting it shortly after.

“For many years I have convinced my people that we must support Israel. Today, because of a few scabby or greedy people, I feel like an idiot,” he wrote in his tweet, evoking a term often used in anti-Semitic slurs in Poland. 

read more

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Germany: City cuts ties to banks that enable Israel boycotts

Via The Jerusalem Post (Benjamin Weinthal):
The deputy mayor of the city of Frankfurt announced on Monday that the municipal government will end all commerce with banks that conduct business with organizations that support a boycott of the Jewish state.

In a statement sent to The Jerusalem Post, Deputy Mayor Uwe Becker wrote that “we will shortly only work together with banks, peoples’ banks, and Sparkassen (public saving banks), who do not maintain business relations with organizations of the antisemitic Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement or affiliated groups.”

Frankfurt is the first German city to sanction banks and financial institutions for providing services to the BDS campaign targeting Israel. The Frankfurt decision to penalize financial entities could have far-reaching implications for the scores of BDS organizations that operate in Germany.

Frankfurt, with a population of nearly 720,000, is located in the state of Hesse and is considered the banking capital of Germany.

Becker said that he planned to forward letters to banks about the new anti-BDS policy.

Frankfurt’s anti-BDS policy also applies to credit institutions and companies that conduct business with the city of Frankfurt.
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Europe: Knesset Member Elazar Stern: Europe must stop supporting terrorism in Palestine

Via European Jewish Press:
Europe must stop support terrorism in Palestine, says Elazar Stern, member of the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, in an interview published by Belgian daily L’Echo.

Stern, who is a member of the centrist Yesh Atid party, conveyed the message to members of the European Parliament he met while in Brussels.

"Europeans do not realize that their own money goes indirectly to terrorists. They answer that they only finance schools and books. Education is important. 
But the European authorities should open the schoolbooks printed with their money and see what is written there: that the Jewish state doesn’t exist, that one needs to sacrifice his life. You find nothing on the Holocaust." 

Stern has proposed a bill that would reduce the money that Israel collects for the Palestinians from customs duties levied on goods destined for Palestinian markets that transit through Israeli ports. "The Palestinians have a budget of which 7.5 percent go to the families of terrorists. A total of one billion shekels per year," says Elazar Stern.   "The more the terrorist action is efficient, the more you receive money. This money given to terrorists is much more than the average salary in Palestine." "This is an incitement to commit terrorist acts, to kill Israelis," he stresses.  
"If I asked the Belgians, right here in the street, what they thought about the fact that they are giving money to the family of someone who killed an Israeli? And that the amount doubles when they kill two? Do you think they would be ok with it? And yet, this is what is happening," he says.
read more

Friday, January 26, 2018

Europe: Israeli parliament speaker urges 'sincere' EU action against anti-Semitism

Via i24News: 
Israeli parliament speaker Yuli Edelstein addressed a special session of European parliament marking International Holocaust Remembrance Day on Wednesday, and accused EU leaders of contradictory approaches to fighting anti-Semitism in Europe while repeatedly condemning Israel.

Edelstein praised efforts to combat anti-Semitism but said that public rebuke for Israel contradicted messages coming from many elected officials.

“The efforts to combat anti-Semitism and protect the Jews of Europe are sincerely appreciated,” Edelstein said at the Brussels ceremony. "But what is the message when elected officials march with the Jewish community one day, and against Israel the next?"

The speaker declared that when leaders embrace the Jewish leaders "in solidarity after a hate-crime and then treat Hamas as a legitimate voice. When an attack is condemned as anti-Semitic and then condemns Israel for fabricated war crimes." "These contradictory messages do not build trust. Instead they prevent us from meeting our joint obligations,” he said. Edelstein also chided an EU delegation that recently traveled to Tehran for failing to condemn a Holocaust denial cartoon contest hosted in Tehran.

"I'm sure, and correct me if I'm wrong, that during that visit no one protested the international cartoon contest taking place in Tehran for the best caricature denying the Holocaust," Edelstein said, brandishing the contest's first prize winner -- an old fashioned cash register with a sketch of Auschwitz at the top [France: Cartoonist Zeon wins Iranian Holocaust-denial contest].

"It's about Jews exploiting the Holocaust to get money," he said, noting that the illustrator came from France.

"For 'Never Again' to really mean 'Never Again', consistent and sincere actions are necessary," Edelstein said. "Anti-Semitism, wherever it rears its ugly head, for whatever reason, is wrong and must be fought at every turn. Writing off such acts as mere opposition to Israel is absurd."

"Anti-Semitism has no excuse. not religion, not poverty, not lack of education, and not political disagreements," he said. Edelstein also thanked the United States for recognizing Jerusalem as Israel's capital. (...)

Edelstein asked the European parliament "what has been learned from all the memorials if synagogues across Europe need round the clock protection?"

"Is Holocaust education effective if Jews on this continent don't wear a kippah or a Star of David necklace for fear of attack?" said the speaker.
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Italy: Why Some Catholics Defend the Kidnapping of a Jewish Boy

Via Atlantic:
One summer evening in 1858, the police showed up at the home of a Jewish family in Bologna, Italy, and took their six-year-old child. Authorities had discovered that the child, Edgardo Mortara, had been secretly baptized when he was a baby. Edgardo had fallen gravely ill and his Catholic nanny baptized him for fear that he would die a Jew and be locked out of heaven. But Edgardo survived—and, in the eyes of the Church, he was now a Catholic. Papal law mandated that all Catholic children must receive a Catholic education, and so he was separated from his Jewish family, with Pope Pius IX personally overseeing his religious education.

The “Mortara case” spurred a wave of protests, with activists and intellectuals from Europe and the U.S. petitioning Pius IX to return the child to his parents. The pope refused. Edgardo eventually became a priest, and in 1940 he died in a Belgian monastery. The Vatican never apologized for his kidnapping specifically. But in 2000, John Paul II issued an apology for the persecution of Jews. Today, the dominant Catholic attitude toward the Mortara case is one of regret: “It’s not one of the episodes that the Church is very proud of,” Massimo Faggioli, a Church historian at Villanova University, told me.

Now, however, conservative voices are defending Pius IX’s decision to abduct a Jewish boy. In the latest issue of First Things, a right-leaning Catholic magazine, the Dominican priest and theologian Romanus Cessario wrote a review of Kidnapped by the Vatican? The Unpublished Memoirs of Edgardo Mortara, which recently appeared in English translation. In the book, author Vittorio Messori, an Italian Church historian, goes through Mortara’s personal archive and defends the abduction. Likewise, Cessario calls the law upon which Pius IX acted “not unreasonable” and casts Edgardo’s kidnapping in a positive light: “Divine Providence kindly arranged for his being introduced into a regular Christian life.”

read more

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Ukraine: Prohibition of book over passage detailing wartime murder of Jewish children by Ukrainian militia

Via The Guardian:
Leading British historian Antony Beevor has described a Ukrainian ban on his award-winning book Stalingrad as “utterly outrageous”. The bestselling history, winner of the 1999 Samuel Johnson prize, tells of the battle for the Russian city during the second world war. A Russian translation was one of 25 titles included on a banned list issued by Ukrainian authorities last week, alongside books by authors including Boris Akunin and Boris Sokolov.

In 2016, Ukraine passed a law that banned books imported from Russia if they contained “anti-Ukrainian” content, with an “expert council” assessing titles for such content. It is almost four years since Russian president Vladimir Putin annexed Crimea, during which time around 10,000 people have died, and more than 1.7m have been displaced.

Serhiy Oliyinyk, head of the Ukrainian Committee for State TV and Radio Broadcasting’s licensing and distribution control department, told Radio Free Europe (RFE) that the ban was imposed because of a passage that details how 90 Jewish children were shot by Ukrainian militia “to save the feelings of the Sonderkommando”, the work units made up of the Nazis’ death camp prisoners.

“It’s a provocation,” he told RFE. “When we checked the sources he used, we found out he used reports of the People’s Commissariat for Internal Affairs. It was enough to discuss the issue at expert council and we are happy they supported us.” 
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Americans more likely than Europeans to stand up to anti-Semitism, experts say

Via Times of Israel:
It’s better in America: That was the message of a panel of experts considering the rise of the extreme right and of anti-Semitism in the United States and Europe.

That was the good news at the forum Monday sponsored by Georgetown University’s Center for Jewish Civilization. No one, however, could quite pin down why Americans were more resistant to anti-Semitism than Europeans.

“It’s far from perfect,” said Ira Forman, until January the international anti-Semitism monitor for the State Department. “We do it now better than we did 50 years ago, there’s no guarantee we will continue to do it, and frankly, we do it better with anti-Semitism than with anti-Muslim rhetoric and with racism.”

Forman cited American communities that spontaneously rallied to counter anti-Semitism in their midst, notably the citizens of Whitefish, Montana, who a year ago demonstrated ahead of a planned neo-Nazi march targeting the town’s tiny Jewish community, and Oklahoma civic leaders in 2013 who called on a state lawmaker to apologize for using the phrase “jew down.”
People gather in Chicago, Illinois on August 13, 2017 to protest the alt-right movement and to mourn the victims of Charlottesville, Virginia. (Scott Olson/Getty Images/AFP)

In both cases and in many others, he said, the drive to counter anti-Jewish rhetoric came in communities with few Jews and seemed driven more by non-Jews who were repelled by the rhetoric.

read  more

Austria Investigates Fraternity's Nazi Songbook

Via Haaretz:
Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz said Wednesday prosecutors are investigating a student fraternity whose songbook contains Nazi lyrics.

Kurz wrote on Twitter that there should be "zero tolerance for anti-Semitism, racism or praising Nazi tyranny."

His comments come after a report revealed a Freedom Party candidate for state office, Udo Landbauer, was a member of the fraternity with the songbook. Many have raised concerns about Kurz's decision to form a new coalition government with the nationalist, anti-migrant Freedom Party.

The book contains the line "step on the gas, you old Germans, we will reach seven million" — an apparent reference to the 6 million Jews the Nazis killed in the Holocaust. 

read more

UK: East Yorkshire MP reveals second anti-Semitic attack since becoming a Jew

Via Hull Daily Mail:
An East Yorkshire MP has revealed the “torrent” of anti-Semitic abuse he received at the hands of two people while out shopping before Christmas.

Andrew Percy, Conservative MP for Goole and a recent Jewish convert, said he was accosted by a man and a woman while in Doncaster shopping.

The ex-Hull City councillor previously alleged, as reported by the Mail, that he was targeted during the snap general election last summer, with two individuals said to have “screamed” at him for being “Israeli scum” and “Zionist scum”.

The backbencher is vice-chairman of the Conservative Friends of Israel and has defended Israel’s foreign policy in the past.

read more

Russia: Moscow University Student Removed From Exam for Jewish Headwear

Via Moscow Times:
A Jewish student at Moscow State University was barred from taking an exam this week after he declined to take off his religious headgear at the request of a professor.

Lev Boroda was asked by geography professor Vyacheslav Baburin to remove his Jewish religious cap, called a yarmulke or kippah, or leave the classroom, the SOVA Center monitoring group reported Tuesday.

Boroda, who later took the exam with a different professor, has reportedly filed a complaint about the incident with university administrators.

The film student recalled an earlier incident in which the university’s gym teacher told him to “cross himself” when he asked for permission to skip class during the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur, the SOVA Center reported.

Sergei Dobrolyubov, the dean of the geography department, lauded the professor for following the university’s rules, which prohibit headgear from being worn on campus. He pointed to Baburin’s request last year for female Muslim students to remove their headscarves before exams.
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Tuesday, January 23, 2018

European Parliament invites Iranian official said to have links with bombing of Buenos Aires Jewish center

Via European Jewish Press (Yossi Lempkowicz):
The Simon Wiesenthal Centre has protested the invitation made by the European Parliament to an Iranian senior official who is said to have links with the 1984 bombing of a Jewish center in Buenos Aires.

Alaeddin Boroujerdi, who is the Chairman for the Committee for Foreign Policy and National Security of the Islamic Consultative Assembly of Iran, was invited for an ‘’exchange of views’’ at Tuesday’s meeting of the European Parliament foreign affairs committee (AFET) where is was due "to present further information on the Iranian position on regional developments, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action and the current political situation in Iran."

According to Simon Samuels, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations, Boroujerd is an Iranian alleged associate of top Hezbollah officials and of former Foreign Minister, Ali Akbar Velayati, who is sought under an Interpol red notice arrest warrant for alleged complicity in the bombing of the AMIA Jewish Centre which left 85 dead and over 300 wounded”.
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Czech Republic: Miloš Zeman and the Czech tradition of supporting Israel when it matters

Via The Tablet (Edward N. Luttwak):
The only European leader who starkly defied the protesting chorus to applaud Donald Trump’s recognition of Israel’s capital was the President of the Czech Republic, Miloš Zeman.

By so doing, Zeman was renewing a peculiar tradition of his office that started with the founding president Thomas Masaryk, a philosophy professor who first became a public figure in Austro-Hungarian days by powerfully defending Leopold Hilsner, a Jewish tramp tried and convicted of the ritual murder of a girl in 1899. To the fury of the Catholic prelates who had incited mobs against Hilsner, the imperial authorities intervened from Vienna to stop Hilsner’s execution. A long campaign ensued till Hilsner’s liberation, and, in the process, Masaryk won over many Czechs to his view that anti-semitism was a pernicious pack of lies at a time when it was almost Catholic doctrine ( Viennas’s mayor Karl Lueger kept been re-elected till his death in 1910 on an explicitly anti-semitic platform, strongly backed by the Church). (...)

All through this, the Czechs–Israel’s one and only suppliers–were bombarded with American and British complaints, outright threats, and offers of inducements, but they stood firm, just as Miloš Zeman stood firm when Federica Mogherini, Arafat’s ex groupie and Rouhani enthusiast (not one word from her about the recent Iranian protests) and now Europe’s farcical “High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy“, chose to lead the outcry over Jerusalem.

Zeman is up for re-election against Jiří Drahoš, a nice man and a perfectly respectable scientist, but it is clearly Zeman who upholds the Masaryk tradition when it comes to Israel. He received 38 percent of the vote in the first round as against 26 percent for Drahoš, but faces a maximum effort from the Mogherini set in the concluding vote next week (for more on the election see here). He is worthy of support.
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UK "must end this appeasement and ban Hezbollah"

Via The Times (Richard Kemp):
Hezbollah is the most powerful terrorist organisation in the world. Yet Britain has proscribed only part of it: its military wing. This Thursday the MP Joan Ryan will lead a parliamentary debate aimed at designating the whole organisation, as the US, Canada and the Netherlands already do. Her chances are slim. The film Darkest Hour has reminded us of British ministers’ penchant for appeasement and, like Churchill, that is what she’s up against.  
Hezbollah, the creation of Iran, emerged onto the world stage in Beirut in 1983, killing 241 US Marines and 58 French paratroopers in the most devastating terrorist attack before 9/11. Since then it has attacked in Latin America, Europe and the Middle East and planned strikes from Cyprus to Singapore. Last summer US authorities charged two Hezbollah terrorists with planning attacks in New York and Panama. Hezbollah is fighting to keep Assad in power in Syria and maintains an arsenal of 100,000 rockets in Lebanon, pointed at Israel.
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France: Broadcaster blasted for prime-time Holocaust joke by Belgian comedian

Yet another Belgian woman being so clever (after scientist Sigrid Vertommen, now Laura Laune) ... Jews denied entry to eugenics libel event by Belgian academic at the University of Warwick

Via JTA:
A public broadcaster in France is being criticized for airing a Belgian comedienne’s joke about the Holocaust.

France 2 aired the joke by Laura Laune, 31, on Friday in its 8 p.m. news journal. A winner of the 2017 season of the French version of “America’s Got Talent,” she was seen saying on stage: “What do sneakers and Jews have in common? They’re more common in 39 than in 45.”

World War II, during which six million Jews were murdered in the Holocaust in Europe, began in 1939 and ended in 1945. The European shoe sizes of 39 and 45 translate to 8.5 and 11 in U.S. sizes, respectively. The flattering profile reportage on Laune noted her “boldness” and her popularity in the stand-up comedy scene in France.

Gilles-William Goldnadel, a well-known lawyer in France and a former member of the executive board of the CRIF umbrella of French Jewish communities, called the joke “horrific” on Twitter and accused France 2 and French media in general of pursuing a double standard on black humor that permits its application to Jews but not women.

“Public broadcaster: They sell the boldness of a joke by a woman on the Holocaust while they kick out Tex for a joke about women.”

The comedian Tex, whose name is Jean-Christophe Le Texier, last month was fired from France 2 for telling a joke about domestic violence against women during an appearance in November in a show on the private channel C8.
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Monday, January 22, 2018

UK: Amnesty International withdraws from event with Jewish community, citing support for BDS

Via The Algemeiner: – Amnesty International sparked outrage among the UK Jewish community after citing support for the anti-Israel BDS movement in its withdrawal from an event it had organized with the Jewish Leadership Council (JLC), an umbrella group of major British Jewish organizations. The event, a panel discussion on Israel and the United Nations Human Rights Council, was scheduled to take place Wednesday at Amnesty International’s London offices.

Human rights lawyer Danny Friedman was slated to chair the panel, with speakers Fred Carver of the UN Association and Hillel Neuer of UN Watch joining the discussion.

Amnesty withdrew from hosting the event last Friday, citing its campaign “for all governments around the world to ban the import of goods produced in the illegal Israeli settlements.”

“We do not, therefore, think it appropriate for Amnesty International to host an event by those actively supporting such settlements,” the group stated. 
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UK: Jews denied entry to eugenics libel event by Belgian academic at the University of Warwick

Background: Sigrid Vertommen is from the Belgian University of Gent.  Joods Actueel has published an article by Mark Geleyn, former Belgian ambassador to Germany and Israel, Anti-Israel Obsession at the Catholic University of Leuven where he refers to her work:
Fertility under fire
The conference by Sigrid Vertommen, who devoted her doctoral thesis to the study of "the political economy of assisted reproduction in Israel / Palestine", is astonishing. It looks like a title out of a chapter of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. She denounced the pro-natal policy of the Israeli state and elaborated on the fertility cult among the Zionist settlers while warning against lucrative bio-engineering. Why is the word "child removal" feature in her text? Are we here in Leuven or in the propaganda department of one of the Palestinian ministries in Ramallah? 
Via David Collier:
Last night, at the University of Warwick, Faculty arranged a public talk that accused Israel of eugenics. Let us digest a simple truth. Like with most medical or technological innovations, Israel is a global powerhouse in fertility treatment. Every Israeli citizen, regardless of race, religion or colour, receives equal treatment. If you are Muslim and in need of IVF then no citizenship in the world, guarantees you the sort of world-class treatment that being an Israeli does. If you have doubts, talk to Prof. Foad Azem, I am sure he would be happy to convince you.
Eugenics is defined as ‘a set of beliefs and practices that aims at improving the genetic quality of a human population‘. Eugenics were most famously used as a justification for the racial policies of Nazi Germany. They are clearly associated with the Holocaust. False accusations of eugenics against Israel, places an accusing finger on the biggest victims of 20th century eugenic experiments – the Jews. The Jews are a people who lost one third of their number to genocide. You cannot spread these type of lies, which clearly fall under the IHRA definition of antisemitism, and then ignore complaints about your failure to protect Jewish students. There is something rotten in Warwick.
Dr Siggie Vertommen
The event was a talk by Dr Siggie Vertommen. It was titled ‘Anti-colonial Resistance is Fertile: Sperm Smuggling and Birth Strikes in Palestine/Israel‘. Vertommen is Marie Curie Research Fellow at the Department of Global Health & Social Medicine at King’s College London. Like many activist academics, Vertommen places her pseudo-science atop a biased and twisted view of Zionism. As Vertommen specialises in ‘the political economy of global fertility chains’ then this is what she places on top of her twisted views of Zionism. 
To understand the mindset, Vertommen wrote a piece on the social unrest in Israel in 2011 and 2012. It was published as a chapter in a book. The title was:  ‘Help, de onderdrukkers worden onderdrukt! Sociaal protest in Israel‘. This translates as ‘Help, the oppressors are being oppressed‘.
Unpack the title. In Israel, people are oppressors. Not the government, not a political body, not an ideology, but the people. In every other nation, social protests such as this are viewed as being carried out by those fighting for change, as opposition to the status quo. In Israel, they were labelled ‘oppressors’ by Vertommen. It perfectly demonstrates, that for Vertommen, there seems to be no way out for the Israeli whatever their views. It suggests a highly racist mindset.
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Sunday, January 21, 2018

Holland: Synagogue and Jewish hospice targeted in vandalism incidents

Via JTA:
Police in the Netherlands are investigating vandalism at a synagogue and a hospice for people dying of terminal diseases.
The incident at the Immanuel Hospice occurred on Jan. 2, the AT5 television channel reported Wednesday. A man wearing a sports jacket dislodged and stole two security cameras in the early hours of the morning.
The synagogue incident occurred on Dec. 31 at Chabad Central Amsterdam, the Nieuw Israëlietisch Weekblad newspaper reported Friday. Unidentified individuals hurled bricks at one of the building’s windows in what a police spokesman told the weekly was an incident “with all the signs of a deliberate attack against a Jewish institution.”
The incidents follow the Dec. 7 shattering of glass at a kosher restaurant in Amsterdam by a Syrian man who was waving a Palestinian flag as two police officers and passers-by watched. The officers arrested the man after he broke into the restaurant through the door he had smashed and removed an Israeli flag.
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Friday, January 19, 2018

Belgium counters US cuts with $23 million for UN Palestinian fund

Via The Times of Israel:
Extra cash from Brussels comes as UNRWA launches fundraising campaign after the Trump administration withholds $65 million Belgium has stepped in to help out the UN  
Agency assisting Palestinian refugees with an immediate disbursement of $23 million after the Trump administration suspended $65 million in aid for the international organization.

De Croo said he was responding to a global fundraising appeal from UNRWA in hopes of making up for funding cuts announced by the United States. The money is Belgium’s allocation for three years but because of the group’s immediate need, De Croo’s office said it will be “disbursed immediately.”

The US provides roughly one-third of UNRWA’s budget, and the agency has warned that it now faces the “most dramatic financial crisis” in its nearly 70-year history. The agency provides health care, education and social services to 5 million Palestinians across the Middle East. 
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Germany: Parliament creates anti-Semitism commissioner post

Via DW:
Lawmakers passed measures designed to tackle anti-Semitism in Germany. An anti-Semitism commissioner is a cornerstone of the proposal, but critics insist the newly created post will be ineffective.

Members of Germany's Bundestag passed a bill to implement tougher laws on anti-Semitism. Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU) as well as the Social Democrats (SPD), the Greens and the Free Democrats voted in favor of creating a commissioner post to develop and implement a strategy to root out anti-Jewish sentiment and crime as part of a 17-point proposal. The far-right AfD party backed the proposal, with the Germany's Left party abstaining from the vote.

In it, the parties state that anti-Semitic crime could still mainly be attributed to the far right, but that migration from the Middle East and North Africa had exacerbated the problem.


Petra Pau, the Bundestag's vice president and Left party lawmaker in Berlin, said in an interview with daily Berliner Zeitung. The proposal "could not do justice" to the problem, as it put the recent wave of migrants at the heart of the problem, she claimed.

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UK: Corbyn’s campaign chief is member of anti-semitic Facebook groups which say 7/7 attacks were an ‘inside job’

Via Sun:
LABOUR’S campaign boss was signed up to a string of vile Facebook pages including anti-semitic memes and conspiracy theories, it emerged today.

Andrew Gwynne - who has boasted about his campaign’s tech skills - joined groups which accused the royals of paedophilia and claimed the 7/7 attack was an inside job.

He appears to have hastily unsubscribed from the groups after being exposed by the Guido Fawkes website - and claims he was added to them without knowing.

One of the groups which Mr Gwynne, the MP for Denton and Reddish, belonged to was called “STOP ZIONIST USA!”

Other members of the group posted messages claiming that Jewish people were responsible for all global terrorism and blaming wealthy Jews for “everything awful going on in this world”.

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Thursday, January 18, 2018

Germany: Iranian spies targeted Israel embassy, Jewish kindergartens

Via Times of Israel:
The German journalist who first reported raids by local security forces at the homes of suspected Iranian spies across Germany supplied new details Wednesday about the Israeli and Jewish targets allegedly monitored by the suspects.

Josef Hufelschulte, of the weekly German-language magazine FOCUS, told Israeli public broadcaster Kan that the suspected spies had been gathering information on the Israeli embassy in Berlin, as well as on targets related to the local Jewish community, including kindergartens.
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Europe: Fecal insults to countries are objectionable—unless the country Is Israel

Via Mosaic Magazine:
President Trump’s alleged vulgar remark last week about the homelands of certain immigrants to America has garnered much attention and generated much outrage. Very different, notes Tom Gross, were responses to the comment of the French ambassador to Britain in 2001 when he called Israel a “shy little country”:
When Ambassador Daniel Bernard told guests at a dinner hosted by the writer Barbara Amiel . . . that Israel was a “shy little country,” some journalists rushed to his defense or even praised him. For example, an article in the Independent by one of the paper’s most prominent columnists, Deborah Orr, described Israel as “shy” and “little” no fewer than four times. (At the time, the Independent was winning newspaper-of-the-year awards).
The French ambassador to London is not the American president, of course. But he is nonetheless the official representative of one of the world’s most important countries: a nuclear power, one of five permanent members of the UN Security Council, a G8 member, the land of égalité and fraternité and of a supposedly sophisticated ruling elite. And Bernard was not just any ambassador. He was one of then-French President Jacques Chirac’s closest confidantes, and had previously served as France’s UN ambassador. . . .
Yet when Bernard made his “shy” remark, the British and French press seemed to spend more time criticizing the messenger, Barbara Amiel, in whose home the remark was made, than the ambassador. Le Monde ran a front-page attack on Amiel for having had the temerity to reveal the ambassador’s comment. In the Guardian, Matt Wells denounced Amiel as “an arch-Zionist,” but had nothing but sympathy for Bernard who, he claimed “was struggling against a tide of anger from Israel.” In fact the Israeli government hadn’t made a single official comment on the matter at the time Wells’ article was published.
Read the full article @ Mideast Dispatch

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Greece: Antisemitic banner displayed in Larissa

Via Against Antisemitism blog:

Supporters of Artemis Sorras, a convicted embezzler, notorious antisemite and conspiracy theorist, rallied last week in the streets of Larissa, capital and largest city of the Thessaly region, displaying a huge antisemitic banner. The banner reads: "The Convention of Greeks [the organization founded by Sorras] opposes fascism, Zionist ideology and anything being against Greek values".

Here is footage from the rally including the antisemitic banner.
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Tuesday, January 16, 2018

UK: Shortlisted Labour candidate shared antisemitic memes

Via Harry's Place:
Michelle Harris has been shortlisted to stand as the Labour candidate in Amber Rudd’s (very marginal) seat of Hastings and Rye.  Her previous form with regard to antisemitism was revealed a few days ago by @GnasherJew, an account dedicated to exposing Labour antisemitism.  One particularly egregious moment came in 2014 when she shared a David Icke post referring to ‘Rothschild Zionist Israel’.  Here’s another example, also from 2014.
"I have often said the holocaust victims who died with dignity must be turning in their graves at the horrors done in the name of Judaism.  Gaza is a ghetto being shelled"

Most here would agree that the implicit parallel between the Nazis and Israelis is antisemitic. Her reference to Holocaust victims is also shocking in its moral vacuity: its meaningless characterisation of their deaths, its offensive presumption she can tell how they – all of them – would view a complex conflict, and her use of them as a weapon to attack Israelis.

Monday, January 15, 2018

Austria: New FM denies having compared Zionism with Nazism

Via The Times of Israel:
Zionism cannot be equated with Nazism, Austria’s new foreign minister said, rejecting accusations that she had made such a comparison in the past.

In an in-depth interview with The Times of Israel, Karin Kneissl defended the far-right Freedom Party, saying neither its leader Heinz-Christian Strache nor its other members have anti-Semitic inclinations. (...)  
When she was appointed in December, the 52-year-old Vienna native made headlines in Israel for having described early Zionism in one of her books as a “blood-and-soil ideology based on German nationalism.”

The quote, from her 2014 book “My Middle East,” led some observers to believe that she linked Zionism with Nazism.

“Some journalists only pointed out one line of the book without explaining the content,” she told The Times of Israel. “What’s important today is that myself and the new Austrian government are and remain committed to Israel as a Jewish state and to a two-state-solution, where Israel and Palestine live side by side, in peace and prosperity.”
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UK: Corbyn ignores Iran, attacks Israel

Via Harry's Place:

Jeremy Corbyn’s silence on the pro-democracy demonstrations in Iran is something that was commented on and forgotten about almost as quickly as the demonstrations were suppressed by the regime. 
Naturally when Israel banned anti-Zionist organisations from the country Corbyn started commenting. According to Electronic Intifada his spokesman said the following;
“Jeremy is concerned by reports that activists campaigning for justice for Palestinians, against illegal settlements and the ongoing occupation have been barred from Israel,”
At the very least it’s a double standard. Since there are draconian reporting restrictions imposed on journalists in Iran and since they actually shut down the internet to stop word of the demonstrations getting out one would say that even labelling this a double standard is harsh on Israel. 
Still it’s Corbyn, the man who served on the Iranian state’s mouthpiece several times from 2009-12. Amnesty International reported that the Islamic Regime hanged at least 1,314 during that period.
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Sunday, January 14, 2018

Europe: As attacks on Jews rise, antisemitism Is the new cool

Via The Algemeiner (Abigail R. Esman):
More disturbing than the alleged arson at a suburban Paris kosher supermarket on Tuesday — the third anniversary of the terror attack at the kosher Hyper-Cacher market, also outside Paris — is this: no one was terribly surprised. Shocked, yes; of course people were shocked — but not entirely surprised.

How could they be, after a rash of antisemitic attacks and regular calls for “death to Jews” that have plagued Europe in recent months? At this point, in Europe, Jew-hatred has practically become the norm.

The fire, which destroyed the kosher shop, broke out in the early morning hours in the southern suburb of Creteil, where about a quarter of the population is Jewish. But the shop owner, who is Muslim, also found swastikas painted on the door a week ago, as did the owner of a neighboring market, which was also slightly damaged in the fire.

Such events are hardly new in France. In addition to the HyperCacher attack– in which Muslim terrorist Amedy Coulibaly gunned down four people after a standoff lasting several hours — in 2017, a Jewish woman was killed by a Muslim neighbor who pushed her out a window, and a Jewish family was robbed and held hostage, also in a Paris suburb. “You’re Jews, so where is the money,” the assailants allegedly said. Yet these are only the latest in a heinous string of attacks on French Jews, mostly, but not exclusively, by Muslims, including the 2012 massacre at a Jewish school in Toulouse. Three children and a teacher were killed in that attack.

In 2006, as many as 20 people participated in the kidnapping, torture and murder of 23-year-old Ilan Halimi. “We have a Jew,” one said in a ransom call.

But France is not alone. Sweden, too, whose national Jewish population (18,000) is smaller than that of Creteil alone (23,000), has seen a disproportionate amount of antisemitic activity in the past few months. In December, Muslims hurled Molotov cocktails at Jewish teens at a synagogue party in Gothenburg, and firebombs were planted at a Jewish cemetery in Malmo. At a Stockholm protest against President Trump’s call to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, The New York Times reported that, “a speaker called Jews ‘apes and pigs,'” a common anti-Jewish epithet among Muslim anti-semites. And in Malmo, according to the Times, “Children at the Jewish kindergarten … play behind bulletproof glass.”

This is not just because of Muslims, however. Even Sweden’s mainstream media has attacked the Jews. A 2009 article in the respected Aftonbladet claimed that Israel regularly kidnapped and killed young Palestinians for their organs.

And in the Netherlands, where anti-Jewish chants filled the hot afternoons during pro-Gaza protests in 2014, it is not always the Muslims who are to blame. Indeed, as Muslim youth waved the ISIS flag and called for death to Jews in The Hague, the city’s mayor, Jozias van Aartsen, refused to denounce them, insisting “no boundaries had been crossed.” More recently, Jewish groups have learned of the plight of 86-year-old Dutch Holocaust survivor Inge Prenzlau, who, after forced to work in her father’s Amsterdam pill factory as a small girl, to prevent the Nazis from seizing it after he became ill, now receives a €140 monthly stipend from the German government — about $150. Germany does not tax this payment; but the new Dutch government has different ideas. “Pay up,” they told her in December. The move outraged the renowned and outspoken Dutch author, Leon de Winter. The son of Holocaust survivors, De Winter posted on Twitter:
[The King] receives a tax-free royal salary, yet this 86-year-old Jewish woman must pay taxes over her so-called ghetto-compensation of 140 euros a month.
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Saturday, January 13, 2018

France: Girl’s face cut near Paris in suspected anti-Semitic assault

Via Times of Israel:
Days after the suspected torching of two kosher shops near Paris, a Jewish teenager had her faced slashed by an unidentified assailant on a street in the suburb of Sarcelles.

François Pupponi, a lawmaker in the lower house of France’s parliament and a former mayor of Sarcelles, on Friday called the assault Wednesday on the 15-year-old alleged victim, who complained to police, “a heinous anti-Semitic attack.”
The alleged victim was wearing the uniform of her private Jewish school, Merkaz-Hatorah, when the attack happened during lunch break Wednesday. She was able to walk home and arrived bleeding and “shocked,” her mother told Le Parisien.

The assailant ran away immediately after the assault, the alleged victim said. She did not see his face. The assailant did not say anything before, during or immediately after the assault.

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Thursday, January 11, 2018

Netherlands: FM Zijlstra in Israel: "We are opposed to BDS and strongly opposed to anti-Semitism, we will fight them"

Via European Jewish Press:
“We are opposed to BDS and strongly opposed to anti-Semitism, we will fight them,” said Dutch Foreign Minister Halbe Zijlstra during a meeting in Jerusalem with Israeli President Reuven Rivlin.

The president held Wednesday a working meeting at his residence with the Foreign Minister.

In welcoming his guest, Rivlin said: “I would like to welcome you to Israel, and Jerusalem, the capital of Israel for the last 70 years as the State of Israel and for the last 3000 years as the Children of Israel.”

Rivlin said Israel appreciates very much the Dutch government’s toward anti-Semitism. I want to also emphasize that BDS in some places is part of the wave of anti-Semitism and we have to be very worried about those waves that come from time to time.”

He said he really appreciates very much our strong cooperation between our two states and I hope very much that this year we will have the opportunity for a G2G meeting between the two governments because I am sure we have a lot of shared interests, to share knowhow, and also our concerns and thoughts about things that are happening all over the world.”

The Israeli president noted that the Netherlands was this year serving as a member of the United Nations Security Council and said, “As one of the major states representing the whole world, and especially the free world in the Security Council of the United Nations, you know what is going on in Iran.”

He added: “We are not only worried about the nuclear ability of Iran, this is the worry of the entire world. We are concerned the extremists in Iran believe they have to set foot all over the region. And now there is a territorial passage from the borders of Iran, not only to Syria but with the possibility to get into Lebanon. We are very worried because of the ability of Iran to influence all terrorist groups in the world. 
The Dutch minister said in response: I share your views that developments in Iran and Syria with influence in Lebanon as well, are dangerous ones.”
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Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Greece: Holocaust memorial in Thessaloniki desecrated with "Free Palestine" graffiti

Via Avi Mayer@Twitter

Austria: Vienna police charge 3 men for waving Israeli flag at rally

Via Jerusalem Post:
The Vienna police are pursuing criminal charges against three pro-Israel activists for waving an Israeli flag in protest of antisemitic slogans at a demonstration against Jerusalem having been recognized by the US as the capital of the Jewish state.

The police are seeking a €100 fine or two days in jail for the display of Israel-support at the December 8 anti-Israel rally near the US Embassy in Austria’s capital.

The criminal notice, dated January 3, states that the activists “showed an Israeli flag at a rally in an extremely provocative way and manner that was visible for participants at the rally and thereby produced considerable offense and provocation among the Palestinian protesters.”

The German-language edition of the news site Vice first reported on Tuesday on the penalties against the three men and conducted an interview with one of the pro-Israel protesters.

“My mother is Israeli, her family [members] are refugees from Iraq and Libya,” the pro-Israel protester said. “An Arab-speaking friend from Israel was able to translate some of the slogans yelled [at the rally], for example, the Arab battle cry to massacre Jews: ‘Jews, remember Khaybar, the army of Muhammad is returning,’ and... ‘Death to Israel.’”

The Arabic cry references an ancient Muslim attack on Jews in the town of Khaybar in what is now Saudi Arabia, killing many and looting their homes. The provocative chant is frequently used when attacking Jews and Israelis, and was chanted on the Mavi Marmara Gaza flotilla ship in May 2010.

The activist, who was given the name Matthias  F. by Vice to ostensibly protect his privacy, said he heard other chants of “Intifada” and “Child-murder Israel” at the rally that was attended by hundreds of anti-Israel protesters.

He added that, “We were shocked by these slogans and did not want to leave the slogans unchallenged. Antisemitism and hate of Israel should not be tolerated.”
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UK: Nuns used anti-Semitic threats while beating boy of Jewish descent, inquiry told

Via Jewish News:
Nuns at an orphanage used anti-Semitic threats while beating a boy of Jewish descent, an inquiry has heard.
The witness, who was at Smyllum Park in Lanark during the 1940s and 1950s, said he is “haunted” by memories of his time at the facility.

He told how he is still “scared” of nuns, to the extent he could not watch the film comedy Sister Act with his daughter.

His submissions were heard at the Scottish child abuse inquiry in Edinburgh on Tuesday.

Although he did not know of his Jewish heritage at the time, having entered the home at a very young age, he said it was referred to while he was beaten on a number of occasions.

The witness said: “The nuns would say ‘we will beat the Jewishness out of you’.

“If you consider what Hitler did during the war – it was just after that period. I don’t think I was beaten because I was Jewish, it’s just an expression that was used.”

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Russia: Murmansk Jewish leader's car set aflame on Christmas

Via Barents Observer:
At midnight on the 7th of January, as Russia was celebrating the Orthodox Christmas, someone put the community leader’s car on fire. Ilya Raskin believes it was not coincidental.

«The Jewish community sees this not only as an act of vandalism and hooliganism, but also as a well-directed antisemitic and extremist act, aimed at stirring inter-ethnic and inter-religious strife,» he says on his Facebook page.

Next to the car, which was partly destroyed by the fire, was found a gasoline can, 7x7-journal reports. Raskin says to the online news magazine that he intends to address the FSB and the prosecutor’s office about the case.

He argues that the timing indicates that there was an antisemitic motive behind the fire.
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Tuesday, January 9, 2018

France: Kosher store target of suspected arson after being hit by anti-Semitic graffiti

Via I 24 News:
Fire comes on third anniversary of 2015 attack at a kosher supermarket by jihadist gunman

A suspected arson attack on a French kosher grocery store revived fears over anti-Semitism on Wednesday, three years to the day since an assault on a Jewish supermarket by an Islamist gunman.

Prosecutors said the store in the southern Paris suburb of Creteil had caught fire overnight, days after it was hit by anti-Semitic graffiti.

Investigators do not believe the blaze was accidental. The Promo & Destock store was one of two neighboring kosher shops in Creteil that were daubed with swastikas last Wednesday.

"The shop has been ravaged, devastated by the flames, there is nothing left,” the President of the Creteil Jewish community Albert Elharrar told i24NEWS on Tuesday, adding that the community is doing its best to “keep hope and to be vigilant.” The suspected arson sparked outrage on social media, with Israel’s Ambassador to France quickly condemning the attack as a "shameful provocation" which “proves the importance of continuing the fight against anti-Semitism.”
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Germany: Draft bill aims to allow deportation of migrants with anti-Semitic views

If they can't be outright anti-semites, they will say they are anti-Zionists or that they are only criticizing the "apartheid" regime of Israel...

Via I 24 News:
Study by American Jewish Committee in Berlin found wide-spread anti-Semitism among Syrian, Iraqi refugees

Germany plans to review a draft bill that would allow authorities to revoke the residency permits of migrants with anti-Semitic views. Chancellor Angela Merkel's party intends to introduce the draft legislation ahead of the International Holocaust Remembrance Day on January 27.

“Who rejects Jewish life in Germany cannot have a place in our country,” reads the draft bill, according to the German daily newspaper Die Welt. It also defines “unrestricted acceptance of Jewish life” as the “benchmark for successful integration.”

The proposal by Merkel's party CDU and its Bavarian sister-party CSU urges the Bundestag to revise immigration law so as to give more weight “to the call for hatred against a part of the population.”

It also asks the parliament “to counter the danger to peaceful coexistence posed by intellectual arsonists early on by classifying this behavior as a particularly serious cause for expulsion”.
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Monday, January 8, 2018

UK: UKMW prompts correction to Indy claim that ‘Israel killed’ Mohammed al-Durah

Via UK Media Watch:
The Al-Durah Affair is an incident, in Sept. 2000, involving a 12-year-old Palestinian boy named Mohammed Al-Durah who, Palestinians alleged, was killed by IDF fire (during a firefight between Israeli and Palestinian forces) while crouched in front of a wall with his father at the Netzarim Junction in Gaza.

Despite the fact that claims the boy was killed by IDF fire that day – based on an entirely inconclusive 59 second video cliphave been discredited, Israel’s guilt was accepted blindly by the media, and al-Durah became an icon of Palestinian “martyrdom” in the Arab and Muslim world.

The framing of the incident also reinforced, some have persuasively argued, the lethal media narrative that Israel murders Palestinian kids.

However, despite the dearth of actual evidence, some in the media to this day persist in accepting, without question, these completely unsubstantiated Palestinian claims that Israeli soldiers killed the boy.

The latest example involves a Dec. 16th article in The Independent on the recent death of a disabled Palestinian man, Ibrahim Abu Thuraya, on the Gaza border during clashes with Israeli soldiers. The article included a passage suggesting that the death of Abu Thuraya (in highly disputed circumstances) on the Gaza border, during violent protests last month, evokes the death of Mohammed Al Durah.

As you can see from our tweet to the journalist, Rachel Roberts, the article suggested that Israel’s responsibility for the young boy’s death was an indisputable fact.

Though the journalist didn’t respond to our tweet, we contacted Indy editors who eventually upheld our complaint and placed the word “allegedly” before the word “killed” in the sentence we highlighted:

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