Thursday, June 21, 2018

Portugal: Left-wing party 'freedom camp' calls for boycott of Israel



A radical left-wing political party in Portugal (Left Bloc - Bloco de Esquerda) is organising a "freedom camp" in Castelo de Bode. One of the workshops will be discussing the boycott of Israel and will "celebrate" Palestine. Israel are the only country targeted in this way by the Bloc.


Via Helena de Matos @ Blasfémias blog

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Greece: Argos mayor expelled over anti-Semitic rant


Via ekathimerini (h/t glykosymoritis)
The mayor of the small town of Argos in southern Greece, Dimitris Kambosou, was expelled from the New Democracy party on Friday over anti-Semitic references regarding his counterpart in Thessaloniki, Yiannis Boutaris.

The decision was taken by the conservative leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis.

In an anti-Semitic rant, Kambosou expressed his dislike of Boutaris over his stance on various national and social issues, adding that “he only gets away with it because he is liked by the Jews.”

“He can say what he wants because he wears the [kippah],” he said.

read more

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

UK: Woman chasing after Jewish kids with knife arrested in London

Via Jerusalem Post:
A woman was arrested in a London neighborhood for running after Jewish children while brandishing a knife and shouting “I want to kill all you Jews.”

The incident took place on Sunday evening in Stamford Hill, which has a large haredi Orthodox population. Some 15 children aged 8 to 15 were walking home from a local synagogue following the evening prayer service.

read more


Germany: Rappers anti-Semitism lyrics probe dropped


Via BBC:
Two German rappers will not be prosecuted after an outcry over lyrics about Auschwitz and the Holocaust.

Critics attacked Kollegah and Farid Bang for comparing their muscular bodies with those of Auschwitz inmates, and suggesting a new Holocaust.

But prosecutors said the artistic freedom was guaranteed by the constitution.

The gangsta rap lyrics, while offensive, did not amount to Holocaust denial or inciting violence, they said.

read more

Netherlands: Men yell ‘f*** all Jews’ at chief rabbi’s son and family


Via JTA:
The son of a chief rabbi of the Netherlands and his family were accosted on the street by two young men who shouted at them “f*** all Jews” at them.

Rabbi Yanki Jacobs, the son of Binyomin Jacobs, made a complaint to police on Sunday about the incident from the previous evening, the AD news website reported.

On a street corner in a heavily Jewish area in southern Amsterdam, “two young men called out at the family ‘Cancer Jews’ and ‘f*** all Jews’ at our direction. They repeatedly drove in our direction in an intimidating manner,” Yanki Jacobs was quoted as saying.

On Twitter, he listed the license plate number of the vehicle in which the two were riding with a request to help identify them. Jacobs said the men appeared to be of Middle Eastern descent.

“I have had enough,” he told AD, adding that previously he had been cursed on the street. “I’ve grown accustomed to thinking about it as normal, but now thought that we as a Jewish community must no longer agree for this to happen to us.

“If I do nothing, who will? I walk around my neighborhood, a 10th-generation Amsterdam Jew, and I will not be driven out of this city.”

read more

Belgium: “Would you mind removing your kippa for security reasons?”, rabbi told in Brussels


Via The Jerusalem Post (Axel Benjamin):
“Would you mind removing your kippa for security reasons?” The one sentence that sums up the malaise at the heart of Europe.

“You have to hear this”, said our usually un-flappable and very level-headed chairman Rabbi Menachem Margolin. So, when he said that, we all knew something significant was about to be said. But even now, as I write this, it seems so ludicrous to repeat out loud, particularly considering the source it came from.

The more I think about it about it, the more it speaks volumes and underlines how deep the malaise currently affecting European political and cultural thought goes. You will have to wait a bit longer for the punchline, first let’s put it into context: At the end of last week, we at the European Jewish Association and our partners at Europe Israel Public Affairs, the European Jewish Community Centre and European Coalition for Israel twinned European Parliamentarians, EU Institution policy heads and Jerusalem’s brightest and best high-tech entrepreneurs and venture partners for the second of our annual High Tech conferences in the European Parliament. The conference was organized by the Jerusalem Development Authority and the Israeli Ministry of Jerusalem and Heritage. Oscar bit done, now the story. (…)

“Would you mind removing your kippa for security reasons?” asked the Belgian policeman to Margolin. Boom. Back to earth with a bump.

Welcome to Brussels in 2018. Where perceived security and provocation from the forces of law and order stems from the act of wearing a kippa, instead of those who find it an affront in the first place.

This logic implies that a girl could be asked to not wear a skirt because she might provoke a rapist, or that a priest should remove his collar in case someone from ISIS takes offence at the ‘infidel’. Is this really what passes as maintaining security in Brussels these days? 
read more

Sweden: Top politician reported for claiming Jews are 'not Swedes'


It is estimated that there are between 15-20,000 Jews living in Sweden.

Via The Local Sweden:
One of the most senior members of the populist Sweden Democrats has been reported to the police after writing on Facebook that Jewish and Sami people were “not Swedish”.

Björn Söder, who is the deputy speaker of the Swedish parliament, made his argument on the Facebook page of Sweden’s Centre Party, as part of defence against accusations from the party’s leader Annie Lööf.

“Annie Lööf adversely affects the position of Jews and Sami in Sweden when she indirectly claims that they are Swedes,” he wrote.

“These groups have minority positions in Sweden just because they are not Swedes. Shame on you Annie Lööf for your racist attitude.” (…)

Söder accused Lööf of using “low” tactics and taking his reply out of its context, which was to defend himself against accusations of racism for earlier comments made in 2014.
read more

Monday, June 18, 2018

Holland: Rabbi complains to police about insults by North Africans


Via Bad News from The Netherlands blog:
Amsterdam rabbi Yanki Jacobs has complained to the police about insults by two youngsters with a North-African appearance. They shouted against him and his family from their car “cancer Jews” and “fuck all Jews”.  
The rabbi was recognizable as being a Jew by his kippa. He said that they passed a number of times in their car in an intimidating way. The rabbi said that such insults occur so frequently that he has begun to consider it normal.
read more in Dutch at ad.nl

UK: Police probe three vandalism incidents at Manchester Jewish cemetery


Via Jewish News:
Vandalism at Urmston Jewish Cemetery Credit: @Joanne13Harding on Twitter
Police are investigating three separate incidents of vandalism at a Jewish cemetery in Manchester, with the most recent causing “thousands of pounds worth of damage”.

More than 30 headstones were pushed over at Urmston Jewish Cemetery in Manchester on Sunday, following two other reports of criminal damage at the site on 7 and 14 May.

Greater Manchester Police said they are investigating the separate incidents and “the spates of vandalism are being treated as hate incidents”, but no arrests have been made.

The police are investigating CCTV footage to identify offenders and patrols in the area have been increased.
read more

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Germany/UK: Munich mayor accuses Rogers Waters of antisemitism


Via The Jerusalem Post (Benjamin Weinthal):
Mayor Dieter Reiter

Munich Mayor Dieter Reiter slammed Roger Waters, co-founder of the British band Pink Floyd, for his stoking of antisemitism against Israel, triggering an angry reaction from the singer on Friday.

Waters’s attorney demanded that Reiter delete his press statement accusing Waters of antisemitism. Reiter said Waters is responsible for “growing, intolerable antisemitic statements.”  
Reiters office said a city attorney will review Water's request.

Waters performed a concert on Wednesday in Munich’s Olympic Hall. Reiter said it was not possible to prevent the hall from being rented to Waters. However, Reiter said the Olympic Hall will not be rented to Waters in the future, due to his advocacy of the boycott, divestment, sanctions (BDS) campaign against the Jewish state.

Reiter said it “is important for me to make it unmistakably clear ahead of the concert that antisemitic propaganda of Roger Waters is neither welcome in Munich nor will it remain unanswered.”

The Munich city council passed a resolution that the mayor supported last year barring space in public facilities and finances for pro-BDS activity. Munich was the first German city to pass anti-BDS legislation.

Waters’s lawyer said Reiter’s allegations resemble a call to boycott him.

Waters himself has previously said he was the victim of the “Jewish lobby” that was “extraordinarily powerful.”
read more

UK: Former Liberal leader David Steele compares Israel to apartheid South Africa


In Europe, the Right is as keen as the Left to bash Israel.

Via Jewish News:
Israel’s treatment of the Palestinian people has been compared to the old apartheid regime in South Africa by former Liberal leader David Steel.

Lord Steel of Aikwood accused Benjamin Netanyahu’s government of continuing to treat Palestinian lives “as inferior to their own”. Speaking in the House of Lords, the former president of the Anti-Apartheid Movement expressed hope that the recent “slaughter” during protests at the Gaza border would galvanise global opinion just as the Sharpeville Massacre had in South Africa.   
The shooting dead by police of 69 unarmed people protesting against apartheid laws in 1960 was seen as a turning point in the nation’s liberation struggle.

Lord Steel was also critical of the international community, including successive British governments, which he argued had allowed Israel “to defy the United Nations and trample on the rights of Palestinians”.

The Liberal Democrat peer made his hard-hitting remarks as he opened a debate in the Lords on the situation in the Palestinian territories. 
read more

Friday, June 15, 2018

Spain: In first, a Spanish state adopts BDS as policy


Via JTA:
Navarre became the first state in Spain to endorse the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel. 
The motion voted on last month in Navarre, in northern Spain, received the support of all the parties represented in parliament except the center-right Popular Party, the ACOM pro-Israel advocacy wrote in a statement Friday. 
The motion passed on May 21 calls on the central government to “support any initiative promoted by the international BDS campaign.” It also calls on Spain to “suspend its ties with Israel “until that country ceases its policy of criminal repression of the Palestinian population.” 
Navarre is one of 17 autonomous communities — states with their own parliaments — that together make up quasi-federal Spain.  
Catalonia’s parliament last year declared independence from Spain, though Madrid declined to recognize the declaration. Navarre has a substantial Basque population and a strong separatist movement. 
The motion went on to condemn Israel for “murdering” dozens of Palestinians in May — a reference to those killed by Israeli forces during Hamas-organized riots along the Gaza border that featured hundreds of firebombs and attempts to breach the security fence into Israel. Of 61 people killed in the riots on May 14, 50 were Hamas members, according to one senior member of that organization.
read more

Poland: Magazine asks “just how strong is the Jewish lobby?” on its front cover


Via Everyday Antisemitism:
Right wing Polish magazine Do Rzeczy has published an antisemitic issue which features the question “just how strong is the Jewish lobby?” on its front cover.

The weekly right wing magazine was founded in 2013 and represents Christian conservatism in the country.

The article pits the mysterious “Jewish lobby” against Poland, asking “can the Polish government handle it?”. Poland is currently governed by the far right Law and Justice Party, a party infested with antisemitism from the top all the way down to the grassroots.


read more

Italy: The Jewish Opera Italy Couldn’t Bear to Hear

Via Atlantic:
After the composer died in Turin in 1945, hiding in a fleabag hotel under a false name to avoid roundups, his music was forgotten. His family tried for years to get Italian opera houses interested in it, only to be met with suspicion and resistance. Producing Finzi’s music posthumously would have implied admitting and publicizing that it had once been banned because of the racial laws, a part of the past with which Italy still has not properly reckoned. So the Finzis did what European Jews sometimes do when they feel voiceless: They turned to the U.S.

(...)

Yet this is not just the story of a Jewish composer finally getting the recognition he deserves. It’s also the story of a country that still represses the memory of its racist past, a phenomenon that carries serious consequences for modern-day politics, especially at a time when the populist right wing is on the rise.

“When it comes down to the racial laws, Italy never fully reckoned with its responsibilities. Unlike what happened, for instance, in France [or Germany], no Italian head of State or government ever apologized for the persecution of Jews,” Guri Schwarz, a historian at the University of Genova, told me. Many Italians, he said, grew up with the distorted notion that the racial laws were not such a big deal, that Italy was “out of the shadow of the Shoah,” that the Holocaust was “a German thing.”

“It’s not that Italians didn’t learn about the persecution of Jews, but often they learned about it as if it where something that happened somewhere else,” said Schwarz. This lack of historic consciousness, he added, is the result of what he described as “the normalization of fascism,” a political process that began in the 1980s, when the Socialist party attempted an alliance with the post-fascist Movimento sociale, and continued with Silvio Berlusconi, who included self-described “former fascists” in his coalitions. “The message was, ‘We can include fascists [in mainstream politics], and we can do that because they weren’t really so bad.’”

read more

UK: Leftie lawyer hired by Labour to oversee anti-Semitism cases is ‘friends with anti-Jewish activists’


Via The Sun:
Labour bosses have been blasted for hiring a leftie lawyer who is friends with members accused of anti-Semitism to advise them.

Gordon Nardell QC was last week announced as the party’s new in-house legal counsel to help deal with the backlog of anti-Semitism cases - and will oversee the party’s disciplinary processes.

But critics claim his links to grassroots members accused of anti-Semitic comments undermines his independence, and it could be a conflict of interest if he rules on their cases. It has been revealed that the former councillor and wannabe-MP has a long history of links to the hard left and is friends on Facebook with suspended members.

Labour figures have demanded that the new General Secretary, Jennie Fornby, think again about her decision to hire him in the role. Jewish groups have demanded more progress on dealing with pockets of anti-Semitism in the party, and were left fuming after Jeremy Corbyn refused all of their demands. Labour has set an August deadline for resolving complaints relating to anti-Semitism.
read more

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Anti-Semitic incidents drop sharply in Poland and Hungary, watchdogs say

Via Times of Israel:
Despite widespread concerns recently of a rise in anti-Semitism in Poland and Hungary, watchdog groups in both countries said the number of incidents recorded there in 2017 dropped sharply from the previous year.

In Hungary, the Jewish community’s watchdog on anti-Semitism, TEV, said this week in its annual report for 2017 that it had recorded 37 anti-Semitic incidents compared to 48 in 2016, constituting a 23 percent decrease. Some 100,000 Jews live in Hungary.

In Poland, which is home to some 20,000 Jews, Deputy National Prosecutor Agata Gałuszka-Górska last month said that the number of anti-Semitic incidents had dropped by 30 percent, to 112 last year from 160 in 2016. Anti-Semitic hate crimes accounted for about 6 percent of all hate crimes recorded, she said.

read more

Anti-Semitic vandals hit shop in Italy, Holocaust monuments in France, Holland


Via Times of Israel:
A barbershop in Italy, and Holocaust monuments in the Netherlands and France were targeted in separate incidents deemed anti-Semitic.

The perpetrators of the incident involving Gianni Errichiello’s barbershop in a northern suburb of Turin in northern Italy torched a car parked in front of the establishment on Marconi Square. They splashed red paint on the shuttered blinds of the barbershop of Errichiello, who is not Jewish. And they attached a piece of printer paper on which was printed: “This shop belongs to a Jew,” Corriere de la Sera reported Tuesday.

(...)

Separately, in Paris, unidentified individuals removed a commemorative plaque that education ministry officials put up at the Ave Maria public elementary school for Jewish children who were deported from there and murdered during the Holocaust, Le Parisien last week reported.

The perpetrators did not damage any other object on the building’s façade, raising the suspicion that their action was an anti-Semitic incident. The Ave Maria school is located at the 4th District of Paris, or the Marais – the city’s historic Jewish quarter. The district’s mayor, Ariel Weil, who is Jewish, called the incident “shameful.”

On Sunday, unidentified individuals painted swastikas and other far-right symbols on a monument for Holocaust victims in the Midden-Groningen municipality, situated in the northeastern Netherlands, about 100 miles (160 kilometers) from the capital Amsterdam. City workers swiftly cleaned the black paint off the monument as police began investigating the incident, the RTV Noord broadcaster reported.

read more

Belgium: Rapper with anti-Semitic lyrics shut down during public radio appearance


Via JTA:
A Belgian public radio station kicked out of its studio a rapper who on air inveighed against Israel and “Zionists” while introducing a song whose lyrics speak of “money-loving Jews running after each cent.”

The incident occurred last month at the Antwerp studio of a department of the VRT public broadcaster during an interview with Bissy Owa, an up-and-coming performer who is Muslim, about his recently released song titled “Money till the Death,” the Joods Actueel news website reported Wednesday.

The VRT studio muted Owa’s microphone after he said during a live interview: “F**k the Zionists, revolution, Israel must go, free Palestine.”

The song, which begins with the expletive about Zionists, shows him dancing while wearing a black hat and fake side-locks and singing about Jewish greed. He also says “I can’t hang with a Jew.”

read more

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Germany’s sordid Iran policy


Via Mosaic Magazine:
As the U.S. is re-imposing sanctions on the Islamic Republic and trying to curb the dangerous reach of its proxies, Germany has come to Tehran’s defense. Yigal Carmon comments:
If any country in the world could be expected to be extremely cautious about aligning with anyone calling for Israel’s annihilation, it would be Germany, regardless of any extenuating circumstances - economic, political or otherwise. The Bundesrepublik should have distanced itself from any substantial tie with the Islamic Republic of Iran, whose murderous regime is threatening to annihilate Israel.

Germany was the first country that should have told . . . Barack Obama that totalitarian regimes, like Germany’s own Nazi regime, are beyond the pale, and should be denied any legitimacy, particularly when it comes to a nuclear deal with them. Germany’s past should have enjoined it to take the moral lead, publicly, in promoting regime change when dealing with a totalitarian regime such as Iran. The reality is tragically the opposite. . . . Germany . . . has shut its eyes to the notorious human-rights violations in Iran, and to Iran’s terrorizing and murder of its own citizens. Iran, of course, is a major partner, along with Russia, in the greatest humanitarian catastrophe of the 21st century: the Assad regime’s slaughter and displacement of millions of Syrians.

The reversal of the Obama-foisted Iran policy by the Trump administration provided Germany with a golden opportunity to reclaim its professed values. But the reverse happened: Germany is legitimizing Iran, even championing it. . . .

Regardless of Germany’s motivations, this is the moment for Germany to demonstrate national leadership and responsibility that rises above petty considerations . . . and builds a policy on its moral values. If it rises to the moment, Germany could isolate the Iran issue from other issues, and serve as a true global beacon of moral policy. There are other ways to resolve its [other] problems with the U.S., and even to take an assertive stand against Donald Trump on economic matters. Unfortunately, Germany’s grand government coalition and the opposition parties are united in defense of Iran and against the U.S.
read more at JNS

Europe: It’s no fun being a Rothschild in Europe these days


Via The Jerusalem Post:
Twenty years ago, few people in Europe thought of the Rothschilds as Jews. As far as the general public was concerned, they were French bankers and philanthropists. “Rothschild was a brand name,” Baroness Ariane de Rothschild told The Jerusalem Post this week.

The baroness – who heads the Edmond de Rothschild Caesarea Foundation and is a banking and finance expert in her own right – was in Israel for the inauguration of the Crusader Wall Promenade in Caesarea.

She was also receiving an Honorary Doctorate from the Haifa Technion, in recognition of her commitment to making higher education accessible to all young Israelis, especially those from minority groups – particularly their women – who for economic reasons seldom go beyond a Master’s in academia.

The baroness said that the Internet is now crawling with conspiracy theories and statements of outright hatred in connection with the Rothschilds. 

“Antisemitism in Europe is a big worry, and can be felt very strongly,” she said. “There’s a lot of pressure, and it’s a very big problem. The extreme Right is popping up everywhere.”
read more

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Germany: Politicians want Iran-regime center ousted over antisemitism


Via Jerusalem Post (Benjamin Weinthal):
Politicians in the northern German city of Hamburg rekindled on Monday a call from last year to cancel the city’s contract with an Iranian-regime controlled institution because it participated in the annual al-Quds Day rally in Berlin, which calls for the destruction of the Jewish state.

"The right of Israel's existence belongs to the national interest of Germany. Whoever does not recognize this and carries out anti-Israel agitation can, in the view of German historical responsibility, not be a contractual partner of our state," said André Trepoll, the head of the Christian Democratic Union party faction in Hamburg, in an interview with the Hamburger Abendblatt paper on Monday. Trepoll added that the Iranian regime-controlled Islamic Center of Hamburg "proved again with its continued participation in the al-Quds march that a state agreement cannot be made with the center."

He said the "Shura" must eject the Islamic Center from its organization. Shura is an Arabic word usually defined as "consultation" and is a way for creating organization among Islamic organizations and mosques. The Shura has previously called on the Islamic Center to not participate in the al-Quds Day march. 
read more

Monday, June 11, 2018

France: University of La Sorbonne in Paris Jewish students chapter office vandalized


Via European Jewish Press:
If Sacha Ghozlan had any doubts about whether there would be more anti-Semitic attacks in France following the March murder of an 85-year-old Holocaust survivor, he quickly got an answer.

Ghozlan, the president of the French Jewish Students Union (UEJF), planned to attend a rally on March 28 with more than 10,000 others in response to the murder of Mireille Knoll, who was found stabbed 11 times in her Paris apartment a few days earlier.

Hours before the gathering, Jewish students at the University of La Sorbonne in Paris found that its UEJF chapter office had been vandalized, with materials tossed on the floor and stepped on and “Death to Israel” and “Zionist racist anti-goy office,” written in French on the walls, according to videos of the office.

“At that particular time, it was very difficult to organize a gathering of the non-Jewish students,” said Ghozlan. “They refused to release a public statement [condemning the vandalism]because they didn’t want to be involved in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.” (...)

After the vandalism, the UEJF wanted to get political leaders’ attention, so they commissioned a survey that measures attitudes among French people towards Israel and Jews. The study by the Institut français d’opinion publique, a market research firm, found that 54 percent of the respondents ages 18 to 24 believe that “Zionism is an international organization that seeks to influence the world and society in favor of Jews.” 
Fifty-two percent considered Zionism a racist ideology, and 57 percent had a bad image of Israel.(…)  
Jews in France and elsewhere in Europe now face not only traditional anti-Semitism from the far-right, but also from far-left parts of European society and from Muslim immigrant communities, according to Simone Rodan-Benzaquen, director of the American Jewish Committee-Europe. The focal point is a “biased view of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”

She would like to see European governments adopt a “zero-tolerance policy” towards anti-Semitism.

“There seems to be a discrepancy between the words and the actual actions,” she said. “You will have very strong words from the president, from the prime minister, on anti-Semitism, but then you will have small incivilities or anti-Israeli demonstrations in the streets of Paris that suddenly turn sour.”
read more

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Austria: Holocaust memorial in Vienna defaced

Via reader:

There is a small memorial exhibit at the subway station Herminengasse in Vienna, for the Jews rounded up and sent to death and concentration camps during the Holocaust. Although this exhibit only opened in October 2017, it already has been defaced twice, this time with "gaza" spray-painted in blue. Workers tried to wash it off but it is still quite visible.

Photos of the recent defacement (the squiggly black lines are part of the original exhibit):


Friday, June 8, 2018

Europe: Netanyahu refused to meet EU's Mogherini


Via i24NEWS:
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rebuffed a request from the European Union to meet its foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini next week.

Mogherini was scheduled to speak at a conference in Jerusalem on Monday but subsequently cancelled her appearance, the event's hosts, the American Jewish Committee, confirmed to Hadashot News.

The reason was that Netanyahu's office ignored a request by Mogherini for the two to meet while she was in town.

Diplomatic sources confirmed to i24NEWS that Mogherini's planned visit was not a state one.

The EU's foreign service did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the report, but reportedly told the channel that the cancellation was due to scheduling conflicts.

Israel frequently clashes with the EU's diplomats, who in theory represent the united positions of the bloc's member states. An unnamed Israeli government source accused Mogherini of holding positions Israel finds "hostile". 
read more

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Germany: Jewish teen was listening to Hebrew song before Arab men attacked him in Berlin


Via EJP:
Because he was listening to a Hebrew song on his cellphone, a Jewish teen and two of his friends were attacked in Berlin by a group of Arabs, the Bild newspaper reported.

The attack happened at a train station late on Saturday.

According to the report, the Arab assaillants said they were from the Gaza Strip.

The 17-year-old teen, identified as Jonathan, told the daily Israel Hayom newspaper that he and his two non-Jewish friends, of the same age, were waiting for a train when he played Israeli singer Omer Adam’s hit song 'Tel Aviv, Ya Habibi, Tel Aviv' on his phone.

According to the Israeli teen, the Arab men shouted at him: "Hebrew music? For 70 years you are murdering children. Berlin is our city now and here we don’t listen to fucking Jewish music."

After pointing out that just as they can play Arabic music he can listen to Israeli music, Jonathan said, he and his friends moved away from the group but they were followed and threatened them: "If I had a knife, I would kill you…"
read more

Ireland: Leila Khaled, a convicted plane hijacker, to speak at a teachers’ club in Dublin


Via The Times of Israel:
Israel has lodged an official protest to Ireland over the invitation of Leila Khaled, a convicted Palestinian plane hijacker who has continued to advocate violence against Israelis, to speak at a teachers’ club in Dublin belonging to the Irish National Teachers’ Organization.  
Strategic Affairs Minister Gilad Erdan sent the protest letter to Dublin’s education minister, Richard Bruton, demanding that he cancel Khaled’s appearance, Hadashot TV reported Thursday. Khaled is scheduled to speak via video link in a public talk hosted at the club by the socialist groups Anti Imperialist Action Ireland and Lasair Dhearg.  
“It is hard to understand why Ireland, which has also experienced many terror attacks, would agree to honor a terrorist at an educational event, who expresses solidarity with terror attacks and views them as a legitimate tool,” Erdan wrote.
read more

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

UK: Jeremy Corbyn is pitting Britain's Muslims against Jews


The Telegraph (Ed Husain):
In recent days, we have seen the worst elements of Jeremy Corbyn. Behind the veneer of an affable, bearded chap I see a sinister Marxist who believes in class warfare and also in pitting Britain’s Muslims against Jews.

Under Corbyn, the Labour party has a serious and sustained problem with Jew-hatred. Rightly, for months, there has been scrutiny of increased instances of anti-Semitism, with suspensions and investigations including the departure of Corbyn’s long-term ally Ken Livingstone. Lifting from the Soviet Union’s playbook of diversionary tactics, Corbyn has now accused the Conservatives of “Islamophobia”. This is the worst form of whataboutery, but I believe there is something darker at...
read more (Premium)

Sweden: Foreign Minister tells Palestinians: ‘We will fight with you and for you’


Via JTA:
Sweden’s foreign minister told Palestinians that her country will “fight with you and for you,” prompting pro-Israel activists to accuse her of encouraging violence against Israelis.

Margot Wallstrom, whom Israel has accused of pursuing hostile policies against the Jewish state, made the pledge last month during a visit to an exhibition at the Palestinian Authority representative’s office in Stockholm.

“You know how much we care about Palestine, you know that we will continue to hopefully fight with you and for you,” Wallstrom said, adding: “And we will fight for a two-state solution, we will remain a close friend.”

The Sweden-Israel Friendship Association said in a statement last week that Wallstrom’s language, which is unusual for a top diplomat of a major member of the European Union, suggests that “the government of Sweden has placed itself on the ‘Palestinian’ side in their armed struggle to wipe out Israel.”

But a spokesperson for Wallstrom told JTA that her referencing of “fighting” was for “a negotiated two-state solution,” and that the “security of both Israel and Palestine is fundamental to Sweden.”

Sweden is the only country in the European Union that recognizes a state it calls Palestine.

“Palestinians walk around with keys in their pockets to homes that they once owned,” she said in reference to the Palestinians’ aspiration for what they call “return” to places inside Israel that some 700,000 Palestinians left during the 1947-48 war that led to Israel’s creation.

“It is so important to know your history, to honor and to cherish your history,” Wallstrom said, but “also to think about the future.”

In 2015, Wallstrom said that terrorist attacks in Paris by radical Islamists were rooted in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, drawing protests from Israel.

Germany: Anti-Semitism In Rap, A Loaded Question

Via World Crunch:
Artists are now using anti-Semitism and Islamism to shock, and that’s not surprising. But if both listeners and rappers started to finally take music seriously, this could change.

Since Germany's top music prize, the Echo awards, honored the rappers Kollegah and Farid Bang, there has been a misunderstanding that both sides of the debate have somehow agreed upon: that anti-Semitism is part of hip-hop culture. Some intend it as criticism; others want to defend the two rappers. But no matter how you mean it, it’s bullshit. Too many who are now talking and writing about the issue have no idea what rap is, to begin with.

In German rap, anti-Semitic content became visible only with the rise of rappers such as Bushido and Haftbefehl, around ten years ago. Kool Savaş, who started in the 1990s and is a pioneer of battle-rap in Germany, raps transphobic, homophobic and misogynist lyrics, but has never used anti-Semitic words. One might ask why so few have been upset about his words. But one thing is certain: The claim that anti-Semitism is part of rap is simply not true. This trend is relatively new.

It was born and grew because rap was a relatively unnoticed genre for a long time. In Germany, it was also considered to be the music of the lower classes and adolescents. This lack of interest from the public allowed the formation of a semi-criminal parallel community with its own "code of honor" — or at least one that pretends to be criminal, because that belongs to the bad boy image and offers street credibility. Much of it was and is only for show.

...

The neo-gangsters from Frankfurt and North Rhine-Westphalia have managed in recent years to again make woman the object of their degrading lyrics. The arguments that one hears defending misogynist rappers are now used to brush aside allegations of anti-Semitism: First, rap only depicts society; secondly, only the musical ego is speaking here, not the private person. Both arguments fail to take rap seriously enough and underestimate its influence.

read more

Belgium: Anti-Semitic caricature removed from textbook

Background: Belgium: Antisemitic Latuff cartoon published in textbook


Via Ynet:
Two months after Ynet first made public a Belgian textbook contained a caricature that could be construed as anti-Semitic, the country's Education Ministry announced Thursday that the upcoming edition of the book will be published without the offensive drawing.

A letter forwarded by Belgian Education Minister Hilde Crevits Thursday to attorney Yifa Segal, director of the International Legal Forum—who first exposed the story—notified the lawyer that after a probe and a talk with the book's publisher, the caricature will be removed starting with the book's next edition.

The minister added that, "One of the education system's goals is to bring up the younger generation to become respectable, informed citizens" and that the Flemish government only set a bar on academic achievement, leaving selection of appropriate books to each school.

The matter initially came to light in late March, when the International Legal Forum NGO was informed by parents from Bruges of a geography textbook intended for 15 year olds and approved by the country's education system.

The chapter in which the caricature appeared dealt with purported inequality in water distribution between Israelis and Palestinians residing in the West Bank. The caricature showed an overweight Jew with traditional Jewish payos (or sidelocks) asleep in a bathtub filled with water, contrasted with an old Palestinian woman with an empty water bucket.

The cartoon—which may have come from the international human rights group itself—carried a caption that read, "Amnesty International: Israel is denying Palestinians access to adequate water … While settlers enjoy lush lawns and swimming pools!"

Attorney Segal, who is deeply involved in the international struggle against the worldwide Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, was astounded by a copy of the textbook she obtained and consequently sent a scathing letter to the Belgian education minister demanding the anti-Semitic caricature be removed summarily. 
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Sweden: Jewish group shuts down after Nazi threats


Via The Local:

Sweden’s most northerly Jewish community group has closed down following a succession of threats from neo-Nazi groups.
The Jewish Association in the city of Umeå shut itself down at a board meeting at the end of May.

“It’s a heavy blow. I’m very sad about it, and have even shed a few tears,” said Carinne Sjöberg, the Liberal Party politician who chaired the association. “In some way, it feels like we lost.”

In a tweet, Sweden's Jewish Youth Association thanked Sjöberg and other board members for the work they had done since the group was established in 2010.

"This means that there is no Jewish organisation in Sweden north of Uppsala," it wrote.

 The association moved out of its premises in April last year, after swastikas were painted on the walls alongside antisemitic stickers which included pictures of the Nazi leader Adolf Hitler, the text ‘we know where you live’.

Association members also received threatening emails and Sjöberg was even visited at her home.

According to the Dagens Nyheter newspaper, the threats came predominantly from the neo-Nazi Nordic Resistance Movement, which has been growing in strength in recent years, and is very active in northern Sweden.

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Tuesday, June 5, 2018

UK: Jews worry too much...


Via Weekly Standard (Irwin M. Stelzer):
Jews worry too much. That seems to be the point of a recent article in the otherwise sensible Economist. Sure, two German rappers won that country’s highest music award by bragging their torsos are “better defined than an Auschwitz inmate’s” and vowing to “make another Holocaust.” But, says the Economist, the intended targets of this aspirational Holocaust were “unclear” and could “possibly [be] rival hip-hop artists.”

No reason to worry then that Germans were not alone in figuring out “whom.” The rappers’ invitation to another Holocaust was broadcast on Israel’s Holocaust Remembrance Day.

There’s more. Pears Institute scholar David Feldman is quoted by the magazine for the proposition that “competitive victimhood” prompts “claims of oppression by Jews, Muslims, and other groups [to] step on each other’s toes.” Anti-Semitic, is merely part of a “general wave of chauvinistic sentiment” that has also seen hostility towards Muslims, gays, and Roma to rise. The comfort that Jews should take from this is similarly unclear.

In the past, French, German, and other European Jews could look to a short hop across the channel for a safe haven. Now, not so much. 
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Monday, June 4, 2018

Italians trained to fight Israel in Palestinian refugee camps, former Arafat adviser says

Things don't really change in Europe, do they? In 2018, 25% of Italians do not want Jews as family members

Via La Stampa:
During the Seventies, thousands of Italians went to Palestinian refugee camps to give their help, according to a former member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP). Bassam Abu Sharif, a historic member of PFLP who later became advisor of Yasser Arafat, has been heard by the parliamentary inquiry committee into the death of Aldo Moro, the leader of the Christian Democratic Party, who was kidnapped and killed by the Red Brigades in 1978. Bassam Abu Sharif said to the committee also that there was a non-aggression pact between the Italian secret services and the Palestinian fedayeen.

«The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine had special relations with some of the revolutionary groups emerging in Europe after 1968. These forces did not know how to oppose capitalism, and we taught them how to do it. It was part of the fight against the imperialism that supported Israel. Thousands of Italian young women and men came to Palestinian refugee camps in order to help in different ways, in the schools, in the clinics, or in combat», Bassam Abu Sharif said to the committee. This is the first time explicit mention is made of the presence of Italians in the Palestinian refugee camps forty years ago.
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Italy: 25% of Italians do not want Jews as family members


Via The Times of Israel:
Nearly a quarter of British respondents to a poll on attitudes to minorities in Western Europe said they would be unwilling to accept Jews as family members.

The Pew Research Center’s report titled “Being Christian in Western Europe” was published Wednesday and contains results from interviews with more than 24,000 randomly selected adults in 15 countries. In the United Kingdom, 23 percent of 1,841 respondents interviewed said “no” when asked “Would you be willing to accept Jews as members of your family?” It was the second-highest highest proportion of naysayers, directly after Italy’s 25 percent. The poll has a margin of error of up to 3 percent. (…)

The statement that “Jews always pursue their own interests and not the interest of the country they live in” received the highest levels of agreement in Portugal and Spain, with 36 and 31 percent of 1,501 and 1,499 respondents in those two countries, respectively. Next were Italy, Belgium and Norway, with 31, 28 and 25 percent, respectively.
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Sunday, June 3, 2018

France supports a UN Security Council resolution on Gaza


Another illustration of the "politique arabe" of France. "At the UN, France, China, and Russia were among the countries that voted in favor of the draft put forward by Kuwait on behalf of Arab countries. Four countries, Ethiopia, the UK, the Netherlands, and Poland abstained."

Via The Times of Israel:
Israeli deputy minister Michael Oren on Saturday slammed France for supporting a UN Security Council resolution on Gaza, saying Paris was hypocritical for supporting an “anti-Semitic resolution.”

Oren’s comments, in a tweet, prompted outrage from France’s ambassador in Israel Hélène Le Gal who accused Oren of not even reading the resolution and “insulting France.”

On Friday the United States vetoed an Arab-backed UN draft resolution calling for protective measures for the Palestinians that won backing from ten countries at the Security Council. A US resolution condemning Hamas also failed.

‏ “Praise for the US for vetoing Security Council resolution on Gaza that didn’t mention Hamas and condemned the IDF for defending Israel,” tweeted Oren, the deputy minister in the Prime Minister’s Office who is responsible for diplomacy.

“Shame on France for supporting it. French government cannot say it’s against anti-Semitism and vote for this anti-Semitic resolution,” said Oren, a former ambassador in Washington.
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Friday, June 1, 2018

French-Muslim activist denies tweet of famous Jews is ‘hit list’


Via The Times of Israel:
A French Muslim anti-colonialism activist on Thursday denied posting a “hit list” of Jewish groups and individuals while referencing a popular TV character.

Sihame Assbague last week posted a list of names of individuals and groups, accompanied by a GIF of a character from the series “Game of Thrones,” from a scene in which she lists the people she intends to kill.

It included the CRIF umbrella group of French Jewish communities; the Socialist Jewish politician Julien Dray; former prime minister Manuel Valls — a supporter of Israel, whose ex-wife and children are Jews; and the radical left-wing politician Jean-Luc Melenchon, who is not Jewish.

But Assbague told the Times of Israel on Thursday that her post “was absolutely not a ‘hit list,'” and was a joking reference to a meme used by many online to denote “people or things that have upset them.” She said the names on her list were those of people or bodies who “distinguished themselves by their Islamophobia.” 
The tweet by Assbague — whom the LICRA civil rights watchdog has accused frequently of spreading racist views on Jews – prompted a reply from the official Twitter account of Al Kanz, which is one of France’s best-read Muslim news websites.

The Al Kanz staffer who wrote the reply added nine more names, including the Jewish philosophers Raphael Enthoven and Alain Finkielkraut; the French-Jewish historian Eric Zemmour; the French-Jewish journalist Elisabeth Levy; and several other writers with critical views on Islam and radical Islam.
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