Friday, February 28, 2020

Netherlands: Online retail giant under fire for selling Nazi propaganda aimed at children

Der Giftpilz (The Poisonous Mushroom):
“Just as it is often hard to tell a toadstool from an edible mushroom, so too it is often very hard to recognize the Jew as a swindler and criminal...”
“The Jewish nose is bent. It looks like the number six...”
“Just look at these guys! The louse-infested beards! The filthy, protruding ears...”
“In the Talmud it is written: ‘Only the Jew is human. Gentile peoples are not called humans, but animals.’ Since we Jews see Gentiles as animals, we call them only Goy.”
Via Dutch News:

Dutch online retail giant is refusing to remove a Nazi children’s book from its virtual shelves, citing the need to uphold the principle of freedom of speech. 
The book, Der Giftpilz (the poisonous mushroom) , dates from 1938 and was written by Nazi stalwart Julius Streicher. It was used as evidence against him during the Neurenberg trials, at which he was sentenced to death for crimes against humanity. 
Jewish and other groups have been calling on to remove the book from sale following campaign against Amazon last week by the Auschwitz Museum in Poland.  
"When you decide to make a profit on selling vicious anti-semitic Nazi propaganda published without any critical comment or context, you need to remember that those words led not only to the Holocaust but also many other hate crimes motivated by  antisemitism," the museum told Amazon, which has since banned the book.
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Belgium: Mayor tweets conspiracy theory about “Jewish lobby”

Vincent Van Quickenborne is a member of the conservative party, Open VLD, like Guy Verhofstadt, who, interestingly, has not reacted yet…

Via European Jewish Congress:
The mayor of the Belgian city of Kortijk, Vincent Van Quickenborne, a former senator and federal minister, tweeted an antisemitic conspiracy theory in the aftermath of the widely condemned Aalst carnival, where antisemitic and racist floats and costumes were paraded around the city.

“The Jewish lobby is working extra hours,” Van Quickenborne tweeted. “After Aalst, now Washington.” The tweet alluded to a reaction by Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz to a comments U.S. Democratic Party Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders about Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. […]

Van Quickenborne is a member of Open VLD, a leading Flemish liberal party, and a member of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe (ALDE). Fellow Belgian liberals condemned the remarks, notably Frédérique Ries, a Belgian Liberal MEP.”The Jewish lobby», am I really reading this? By a former Minister, Senator and current Open VLD mayor? Pure antisemitic speech! For your information Mr Van Quickenborne the shock, disgust and shame at the sight of the Zyklon B posters on a deportation train in Alost were global,” Ries wrote on Twitter.

Van Quickenborne has been a controversial figure in Belgium for many years. In 2002, when serving as a senator he met with Hamas founder Sheikh Yassin in Gaza, for which he was rebuked by members of his own party. In the aftermath of the Aalst carnival, Van Quickenborne had shown support for antisemitic and homophobic tweets.
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Thursday, February 27, 2020

UK: “I hate you Jews…the only reason I don’t kill you is because I just got my British passport and I don’t want to lose it,” US Jewish tourist told

A passerby told an American Jew visiting the UK: “I hate you Jews, you are all full of bulls***, you f*** up the country – the only reason I don’t kill you is because I just got my British passport and I don’t want to lose it.”

The Jewish tourist was on the westbound platform of the Piccadilly Line at Green Park Underground Station, waiting for the train to Heathrow to travel home, when the incident took place.

The victim was left shaken and jumped onto the next train to get away from the suspect, who was described as a 5”8 black male with a black beard and wearing a dark cap and a dark green jacket.
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Europe: 1 in 5 Europeans thinks a secret Jewish cabal runs the world

Via JTA:
A secret network of Jews influences global political and economic affairs. That’s the feeling among a fifth of the 16,000 respondents to a survey among Europeans from 16 countries. The same number also agreed with the statement that “Jews exploit Holocaust victimhood for their own needs.”

The survey was presented by the Hungary-based Action and Protection League Monday at a conference about anti-Semitism organized in Paris by the European Jewish Association. It was conducted in December and January in Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, the United Kingdom and Poland, among other countries.

Other findings:

* A quarter of respondents agreed with the statement that Israel’s policies make them understand why some people hate Jews.

* More than a quarter concurred with the statement that “Israel is engaged in legitimate self defense against its enemies.” A quarter of respondents disagreed and 46% did not express a position.

* More than a third agreed with the assertion that “During World War II, people from our nation suffered as much as Jews.”

Holocaust revisionism and classic anti-Semitic stereotypes were more common in Eastern Europe, whereas anti-Israel sentiments, including anti-Semitic ones, were more common in the west, according to Rabbi Slomo Koves, chairman of the Action and Protection League.
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UK: ‘My family doesn’t feel Jewish any more’

Anonymous @ The Jewish Chronicle:
This past December, somewhere between the first night of Chanukah and the last vestiges of Yuletide excess, it dawned on me that despite both my spouse and I coming from halachically Jewish families, we are the only ones among our generation of British-born siblings and cousins (most of us now in our thirties and forties) who don’t celebrate Christmas. Unsurprisingly, we are also the only ones who married within the faith. […]

The sad reality is that our traditions are too onerous, too alien, and often, frankly, too boring for non-Jews to ever truly embrace (except for those who have undergone the equally onerous process of an Orthodox conversion). Who can blame non-Jewish spouses for picking hot cross buns over hamentashen or pumpkins over prayer books when many of us secretly yearn to do the same?

Sometimes, though, it’s worse than simple disinterest. I’ve encountered non-Jewish partners who harbour downright hostility towards our customs. During my son’s bris, when an aunt tried to comfort me by reassuring me the procedure carries life-long health benefits, a non-Jewish relative by marriage interrupted to pooh-pooh her, declaring loudly that scientific studies had debunked any perceived health advantages of circumcision. It was tactless at best, deliberately offensive at worst — and don’t even get me started on the subject of Israel.

So while I admire [Karen] Glaser’s optimism — “If you throw your lot in with the Jews, you become Jewish by osmosis,” she wrote — forgive me for not sharing it. If anything, my heart breaks a little every time I hear of another Jewish friend or cousin or even celebrity marrying out. The rise of Corbynism only reinforced my despair, particularly in the run up to last year’s general election when Facebook was awash with non-Jewish relations singing the Labour leader’s praises. Attempts to explain the very real fear we felt for the future of British Jewry under a Corbyn-led government were met with disinterest and even derision. 
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Belgium/Netherlands: The deep shift that’s making Jews doubt their future in Western Europe

Cnaan Liphshiz has written the most insightful article, so far, on the implications of the Alost carnival for Western Jews. Please read this extract and read the complete article (link below).

At the 2011 annual celebration of the founding of the Free University of Brussels - Saint-Verhaegen day - the university Law Society float poked fun at Jews, at their worries about antisemitism which are dismissed as "blackmail": "Antisemitims blah, blah, blah". The placard features a haredi Orthodox Jew with the typical ugly Jew-nose, grasping hands, and, like at the Alost carnival, mice/rats (vermin)… (via Philosémitisme blog)

Cnaan Liphshiz @ JTA
I enjoyed the Belgian carnival that featured anti-Semitic floats. Then I searched for homes in Israel.

[…] Dismissing any historic context of how Jews were caricatured in pre-Holocaust Europe, parade organizers have defended the rat display and others as harmless satire. But to Jews, the displays here are jarring not only because of the stereotypes they betray, but also because they indicate how the borders have shifted on what can be said about Jews in the places where they were murdered or hunted down only 75 years ago.

For many of us, it is this deeper shift — not as much the imagery that reflects it — that’s making us doubt our future in Western Europe. […]

Following the carnival, Rabbi Binyomin Jacobs, the chief rabbi of neighboring Holland, told me that he dreamed on Sunday night that he was forced to decide whether to warn his congregants to leave the Netherlands — an issue he’s been struggling with for several years.

In the dream, he felt the weight of leadership that rested on Jewish community leaders in the 1930s and 1940s, he said.

“We’re not there yet, I’m not sounding that alarm yet,” he said. “We can live and prosper in Europe. But the fact that it’s even on my mind is a new development that scares me.”

I have my own fears, with which I’ve been grappling for years living in Amsterdam and revisited following the Aalst Carnival. If depicting Jews as insects is now permissible just outside the capital of the European Union, whereas it was unthinkable just 20 years ago, who knows what things will look like 20 years from now?

At one point during the event, my Belgian colleagues became aware of my presence there — perhaps because my reporting on last year’s edition was a key factor in the uproar that led to the UNESCO delisting.

“Do you think this is an anti-Semitic event?” one Belgian colleague asked me.

It isn’t, I said, but it does have anti-Semitic elements that make me feel uncomfortable. I don’t support banning it because I believe in freedom of expression, I added.

I’m actually having a good time here, I told my colleagues, adding that my main regret is that my kids can’t enjoy it with me. And I meant it. I’m considering taking them here next year because they’d have a blast and wouldn’t even notice the handful of Jewish references that I and my colleagues had sought out.

One wrinkle: I’m not so sure we’ll be in Europe next year.

Not for the first time in recent years, I found myself looking at housing options in Israel on the train out of Aalst.

With each new incident that reflects the mainstreaming of anti-Semitism in Western Europe, I’m increasingly considering the merits of moving my family to the Jewish state.

For all of the problems in Israel, at least events like the Aalst Carnival amount to little more than a bad joke somewhere far away.
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Belgium: Antisemitic pornography at Aalst carnival

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

France: Huge numbers of Jews are fleeing

Via Anne-Elisabeth Moutet @ Unherd:
How France became the most anti-Semitic country in the West

Forty years ago, violence against Jews was unknown but today huge numbers are fleeing

[…] the past two decades have seen murderous attacks against French Jews in the streets, in their homes, in their synagogues and in the districts where many of them had settled back in 1962, at the end of Algeria’s victorious independence war. Insults, bullying and worse against Jews became common in the classrooms of the difficult banlieues around large cities, where Muslim pupils are the majority, forcing an exodus of Jewish families to calmer areas, and some 50,000 people in the past decade to Israel. A smaller number have moved to London
Things have got so bad that a yet-unpublished report commissioned by Ronald S. Lauder, the former U.S. Ambassador to Austria, rates France as the most dangerous place to be a Jew among 11 European countries.

This comes as no surprise here. Since the 1990s, as satellite Arab channels, and later the internet, started spreading the anti-Semitic propaganda that’s the norm in the Middle East, the French state was slow in acknowledging the existence of a problem, and even slower in responding. (One rare exception was the 2004 banning of the Hezbollah-financed Lebanese Al-Manar channel, where, among many comparable offerings, one 12-episode series followed a complicated plot culminating in Jews slaughtering the gentile children they’d kidnapped to make Matzo bread for Passover).

Warnings from sociologists, teachers and social workers, in numerous interviews, speeches and books, went unheeded or scorned. As a result, quite a few of the children brought up within this closely-insulated vortex of hatred ended up joining ISIS in Syria, or, like Mohamed Merah who in 2012 shot point-blank Jewish children in their Toulouse primary school, brought terror to France.
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Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Belgium: Antisemitic pornography at Aalst carnival

Note: not a single non-Jewish Belgian bothered to go to the carnival and make a protest.

Read: The ugly antisemitism at the Aalst carnival

Seen at the Aalst carnaval 2020.

This man's fake nose does not look at all like the other "Jew noses".  Disgustingly, the nose looks like a male sex. Even the Nazis did not dare. Not even for fun.

The man is holding a placard with "rules" for the "Jewish party committee":
1) No Jews in the parade
2) Dont make fun of the Jews
3) Dont tell the truth about the Jews
4) What the Jew wants will happen
5) Your drugs and black money are for us, the Jews
6) For other rules check with us

Typical anti-Semitic "Jew noses":

Spain: Carnival float features Nazi uniforms and trains with crematoria

Via JTA:
At a carnival procession in Spain, participants dressed like Nazis and Jewish concentration camp prisoners while dancing next to a float evoking crematoria.

The Israeli Embassy in Madrid on Tuesday protested the display this weekend at the annual carnival procession in Campo de Criptana, a town situated about 80 miles southeast of the capital.

“We condemn the vile and repugnant representation that disrespects the victims of the Holocaust,” the embassy wrote on Twitter, “making fun of the murder of millions of Jews by the Nazis. European nations must collectively fight anti-Semitism.”

A video of the procession shows the participants marching in their fake Nazi uniforms. Behind them, dancers wearing striped outfits evoking concentration camp uniforms followed while waving flags of Israel. They were followed by the float shaped like a train locomotive with two large chimneys.
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Monday, February 24, 2020

Belgium uninvites anti-Israel NGO with terror ties to UN Security Council

Via The Jerusalem Post:
Belgium revoked its invitation to Brad Parker, a senior adviser for policy and advocacy at the NGO Defense for Children International – Palestine, to address the UN Security Council, following a concerted effort by Israeli Foreign Ministry officials to stop the speech from happening.

DCI-P officials have documented ties to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) terrorist group. The representative originally invited to address the UNSC has a history of anti-Israel activism, which was probed by the City University of New York, where he is a professor.

Foreign Minister Israel Katz praised Belgium’s decision, highlighting DCI-P’s ties to terrorism, and said that “from his statements, it appears that [Parker’s] intention has to take advantage of the invitation to hurt Israel.”

The canceled speech “is a result of successful diplomatic actions towards Belgium, which should be praised,” Katz said.
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Europe: "If I were Jewish, I would leave for a friendlier place"

"If this trend carries on, in two generations, we will perhaps go, like n Rhodes or in Budapest, to almost empty synagogues in old Jewish quarters belonging to history. It is with a certain indifference that our continent will slowly close the rich and tragic history of European Judaism." (Nicolas de Pape)
Belgian author and journalist Nicolas de Pape wrote a book about antisemitism in Europe ("Sur la nouvelle question juive").  He was interviewed by Drieu Godefridi for Causeur.

Nicolas de Pape is quite pessimistic about the future of Jews in Europe. He stated that if he were a Jew, he would move on to greener pastures.

Read the interview (in French)

Europe: Brussels and Barcelona chief rabbis say there is no future for Jews

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Belgium: Doubling down on anti-Semitic displays, parade features costumes of Orthodox Jews with insect bodies

Via JTA:

Caricatures of Jews, including ones depicting them as ants, were prominently displayed at this city’s annual parade.

The displays came a year after the Jewish Telegraphic Agency exposed anti-Semitic displays in last year’s parade in Aalst, located about 10 miles west of Brussels.  
Participants said the new displays were designed to reject the criticism of the town and carnival that followed JTA’s report.

“This is us saying we’re not going to stop making fun of everyone,” a man who identified himself as Fred van Oilsjt, 26, told JTA Sunday while wearing a costume that exaggerates the suits favored by haredi Jewish men. (Oilsjt is Aalst in the local dialect.)

He and 11 other members of his group also wore an ant’s abdomen and legs attached to their backs and a sticker that read “obey” on their lapels. Anti-Semitic imagery has often associated Jews with vermin, but he said the display was meant to be a pun referencing how the Dutch-language word for the Western Wall sounds like “complaining ant.”

Another group wore fake hooked noses and haredi Jew costumes as protest. Their float had a sign labelled “regulations for the Jewish party committee,” and it included: “Do not mock Jews” and “Certainly do not tell the truth about the Jew.”

Among the thousands of revelers who watched the parade from the sidelines, dozens of people wore fake haredi Jew costumes, including one person who also wore large troll feet. Rudi Roth, a journalist for the Antwerp-based Joods Actueel Jewish paper, said the expressions of anti-Semitism in Aalst this year were more numerous and prominent than last year. He called it a “backlash effect.”

Last year, JTA reported that the Aalst carnival included effigies of grinning Orthodox Jews holding bags of money, with a rat perched on one effigy’s shoulders.
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Saturday, February 22, 2020

UK: Ex-Labour members attended meetings with Holocaust deniers

Via The Guardian:
Former Labour party members have regularly met elements of the far right to discuss and propagate antisemitic conspiracy theories, an undercover investigation has found.

Infiltration of the conspiracy theorist group Keep Talking found that Jeremy Corbyn supporters and confidantes of former Labour MPs have attended meetings addressed by Holocaust deniers.

During one gathering in London last year, suspended Labour supporters heard James Thring, an infamous antisemite linked to the former Ku Klux Klan grand wizard David Duke, speak openly and unchallenged about Holocaust denial.

A covert recording of Thring at the meeting captured him claiming that no deaths were recorded at the Auschwitz Nazi death camp, where 1.1 million people, mostly Jews, were systematically murdered. […]

Among ex-Labour members at Keep Talking events – though not the one attended by Thring – was Elleanne Green. Once a Labour member in Westminster, Green founded the secret Facebook group Palestine Live, exposed in 2018 as featuring Holocaust denial and theories that Israel was responsible for 9/11.

Corbyn and other senior Labour party figures had been members of the Facebook group at various points since its creation in 2013. Green, suspended by the party in July 2018, accompanied ex-MP Chris Williamson to court when he sued the party in an antisemitism row. Undercover investigators first noticed Green at a Keep Talking event in September 2018.

During the meeting at which Thring spoke, on 5 March 2019 at a Kentish Town cafe, ex-Labour party member Peter Gregson was the guest speaker with a speech titled: “The loss of freedom of speech on Israel, thanks to bogus antisemitism claims.”

Gregson, who was thrown out of the GMB union and suspended by the Labour party over antisemitic allegations, has founded a group called Labour Against Zionism and Islamophobic Racism (Lazir).

Also present in the audience was Ian Fantom, co-founder of Keep Talking and a 9/11 “truther”, who has appeared alongside Piers Corbyn, older brother of the Labour leader, at a Keep Talking event.
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Macedonia: Jewish lawmaker removed amid hostile anti-Semitic environment

Via JTA:
A Jewish lawmaker from Macedonia was removed as Labor and Welfare minister amid a hostile anti-Semitic environment present since she assumed office in early January.

The ruling party, the left-leaning Social Democratic Union of Macedonia, said Rasela Mizrahi was fired for not calling the country by its new name, North Macedonia, instead using the Republic of Macedonia.

Mizrahi, a member of the center-right VMRO-DPMNE party, was voted out of office on Saturday in a 62-26 vote. […]

“I am a proud Jewish woman from Macedonia,” Mizrahi said during the debate last week to remove her from office, the English-language Macdedonian news website Republika reported. The report said that Mizrahi faced “an unending torrent of anti-Semitic abuse from the left during her term in office.”

“Even before I walked into my office, as the first Jewish person in the history of Macedonia to be appointed to the government, I was the target of reckless anti-Semitic attacks. Instead of criticizing my work, I was attacked for my religion and nationality and labeled with a yellow star,” Mizrahi also said. Most of her family, prominent in Macedonia for centuries, were killed in the Holocaust.
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Europe: EU blatantly funding anti-Israel propaganda – and using someone who supported BDS to help them do it

Via David Collier:
[…] There are no limits to the level of conspiracy and disinformation – no place that the lies do not exist. The EU have also just provided another example – here is what I found.

The EU photographers

Recently the EU advertised an EU ‘Photo marathon’. An opportunity open to young European photographers to spend a week ‘capturing different aspects of Palestinian life’. The week-long trip, flights, accommodation and meals is fully funded by the EU. As part of the process, there is a request to write a ‘motivation letter’, explaining why the applicant wants to participate and they are asked how they intend to ‘spread the word’ upon their return. The EU Press Team in charge of this process consists of two people – Inas Abu Shirbi and Shadi Othman:
[…] Did a Palestinian, born, raised and living in the PA areas – one who supported BDS – write this tweet? Isn’t this a little deceptive? Most people would probably assume that the people providing a face for the EU in the PA areas are European diplomats, not Palestinian activists. If you want to see how two-faced this really is. The EU in Israel have a Twitter feed too. In theory – on the subject of peace – what is important to one – should also be important to the other. Yet if I search for ‘terror’ on the Israel feed – there are countless results – including open condemnations against terror attacks. A similar search on the EU Palestinian feed – returns absolutely nothing. Not a single mention of terrorism.

I went deeper – looking at every tweet, retweet or reply this account has made in three years. Not a single reference to ‘terror’ or ‘terrorism’ anywhere.

There has never been an international delegitimisation campaign as all encompassing, as widespread and as insidious as the global one that exists to demonise Israel. Scratch the surface and you are left bewildered at how anyone takes anything seriously. Let us ask the basic question. Who is auditing where EU funds go – and making sure none of it ends up in the wrong hands?

So what of this fully funded ‘photo marathon’. Palestinians are going to read and judge the ‘motivation letters’, decide which ones best suit their campaign, use EU funds to brainwash European photographers and then use them to push anti-Israel propaganda even further afield. And they will give it all the legitimising stamp of the EU.

This is the EU blatantly funding anti-Israel propaganda – and using someone who supported BDS to help them do it.
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Check the European team - here:
About the EU Delegation to West Bank and Gaza Strip, UNRWA

Friday, February 21, 2020

Ireland: Politician says that Israel has ‘taken Nazism to a new level’

Via Harry's Place (Eve Garrard):
Sinn Fein TD has said sorry for a tweet she posted some years ago in which she declared, among other obnoxious remarks, that Israel has ‘taken Nazism to a new level’. She has now announced that “I apologise unreservedly and wholeheartedly to people I have offended …… I never intended to cause hurt or distress to anyone.”

This apology is couched in a form of words that is quite frequently used by people who have found that the uncensored expression of their views about Israel and its supporters has turned out to be politically damaging to them. It’s a singularly irritating form of words, and it’s worth pinning down just why this is so. For a start, let’s not overlook just how extreme Réada Cronin’s particular claim was: she was saying that the Jewish state has engaged in the practices which were used by the Nazis at their very worst. Just think what those practices actually amounted to back in the day, and think also of the complete lack of evidence that Cronin provided when claiming that Israel is doing the same kind of thing today. (Nor could she possibly have provided it, since it doesn’t exist.). That appalling and unfounded charge is what she’s apologising for, and she casts her apology for it in the language of regret for giving offence.

It’s true that quite a lot of Jews will indeed be offended by being told that Israel engages in industrial-scale mass murder, with attendant rapes, tortures, and hideous medical experimentations on millions of helpless Palestinians, in the total absence of evidence for this. (Why, it’s almost as if people are prepared to make up disgusting lies about Jews – whoever heard of such a thing!)
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Thursday, February 20, 2020

Europe: Check 'POLITICO' magazine choice of photos of Israel to illustrate article


Please check the two photos picked by Arnau Busquets Guàrdia, Senior Visual Producer for POLITICO, to illustrate an article by Nektaria Stamouli: The EU’s hottest hot spot: The eastern Mediterranean and compare them with the other photos…

This is typical European media anti-Israel stuff.  They just can't help themselves.  Arnau Busquets Guàrdia is Spanish, from Catalonia.

UK: Conspiracy fear-mongering against Jews in textbook for schoolchildren aged 11-14

"How could it be argued that the creation of Israel was a long-term cause of the 9/11 attacks?"
Via Tom Gross, writer:
The conspiracy fear-mongering against Jews in the UK (as elsewhere) often starts young. The above photo is from a new textbook for British schoolchildren aged between 11 and 14, published by Hodder Education, called "Understanding History". (Just to be clear, as I have mentioned before, in Osama bin Laden’s speeches and recordings in 2001 explaining his reasons for the 9/11 attacks, he mentioned many issues, such as the Saudi royal family links to America, and the conflict in Kashmir, but he barely mentioned Israel or the Palestinians.)  
The question being posed shows a lack of knowledge of historical antisemitism and blaming the Jews for problems elsewhere, conspiracies that paved the way for hundreds of thousands of Europeans to commit, assist in, or celebrate the Holocaust.  
These are the authors of the schoolbook:  
"How could it be argued that the creation of Israel was a long-term cause of the 9/11 attacks?"

Also here  
Update: Hodder have just announced they will withdraw the book from sale and remove that sentence. However, thousands of the existing books are already being used in schools.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Europe: The “Deal of the Century” and Israel’s European challenge

Via The Jerusalem Institute for Strategy and Security (Dr. Emmanuel Navon):
[…] While Israel should secure US support for the deal's partial implementation in the absence of negotiations, it must also pre-empt and mitigate the opposition of the European Union and of the United Kingdom. This must be done not only by neutralizing unanimous decisions from the EU's foreign affairs council thanks to the votes of European governments sympathetic to Israel, but also by convincing European leaders and opinion-makers that the "deal of the century" is not, in fact, inconsistent with international law and with the two-state solution.  
Early European reactions to the deal provide an indication on how and where Israel should invest its diplomatic efforts. EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell issued a statement in which he claimed that the Trump plan "departs from … internationally agreed parameters" and warned that Israeli annexations in the West Bank would "not pass unchallenged." France said it welcomed President Trump’s efforts, would “study” his plan, and reiterated its commitment to a two-state solution and to international law. The British government welcomed the Trump plan and called it “a serious proposal,” encouraging Israelis and Palestinians to negotiate on its basis and insisting that it was for them to determine if the plan suits their aspirations and concerns. Germany was more lukewarm, welcoming on the one hand the plan’s endorsement of a two-state solution but questioning on the other hand the plan’s compatibility with international law. Poland said it saw in the plan a “valuable basis” for future negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians, and Hungary vaguely said that it supports “all efforts” aimed at solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Thanks to the votes of Italy, Austria, Hungary, and the Czech Republic, the EU's foreign affairs council was unable to pass a resolution that was meant to criticize the Trump plan and to warn Israel not to proceed with annexations in the West Bank. Israel's "divide-and-rule" tactic among EU members was successful once again. But Israel must also influence European public opinions and decision-makers of the plan's advantages and of its consistency with international law.

Europe's leading opinion-makers and mainstream media are mostly hostile to the Trump plan. Britain offers a typical example: while the British government was forthcoming, most British newspapers are aghast. The Economist asserted that the plan "will not bring peace" and "may spell the end of the two-state solution." A Guardian columnist wrote that the deal must be rejected because it allegedly goes against "countless UN resolutions, the Oslo accords of 1993, the Arab peace initiative of 2002 and the fundamental idea that Palestinians, like Israelis, have the inalienable right to self-determination."
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EU: More Israel-bashing at the European Parliament and lack of honest debate

Belgian Member of the European Parliament Marie Arena has invited Yehuda Shaul of Breaking the Silence.  This is further evidence that Eurocrats keep spending taxpayers' money to engage in Israel-bashing. No wonder the EU is increasingly unpopular.  MEP Peter van Dalen raised an important point: "We are lacking in nuances and honest debate. We also need to speak about Hamas terrorism. I find it sad that we're hearing only one side of the story."

Via AJC Atlantic Institute:
As the European Parliament Committee on Human Rights (DROI) once again invited "Breaking the Silence," MEP Peter van Dalen raises an important point: "We are lacking in nuances and honest debate. We also need to speak about Hamas terrorism. I find it sad that we're hearing only one side of the story."  
Dear Marie Arena, you rightly said yourself: "It's important for our parliament to hear all interested parties." We thus look forward to your prompt invitation to the many critics of BtS who point to its unprofessional conduct, unverifiable accusations & inaccuracies. There's even precedent European Parliament DROI Committee to hearing "all interested parties."

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Netherlands: City maintains street signs identifying Israeli cities as located in Palestine

Via JTA:
Dutch city that in 2014 agreed to change street signs identifying Israeli cities as Palestinian postponed the correction indefinitely.

A spokesperson of the municipality of Eindhoven in the eastern Netherlands on Friday wrote on Twitter that the signs that identify the cities as being located in Palestine would be changed — “but in the framework of regular replacement, which is now not on the table.” The city agreed to change the signs in 2014 following an outcry by Dutch Jews and Israel advocates, including Likoed Nederland, which complained the designation was politicized and intended to “wipe Israel off the map.” The cities referred to on the street signs include Jerusalem, Nazareth and Tiberias.

On Friday, the municipal spokesperson said the reference to Palestine was to “biblical Palestine.” The spokesperson was replying to renewed criticism on Twitter by Esther Voet, editor-in-chief of the NIW Dutch-Jewish weekly, and others.

The New Testament does not mention Palestine. 
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Germany: Syrian refugees bring their own anti-Semitism to Germany

Via The Washington Institute for Near East Policy (Rawan Osman):
With this year’s International Holocaust Remembrance Day recognizing the 75th anniversary of the freeing of Auschwitz, it is also important for the German public to address the potential implications of a new wave of anti-Semitism within its borders. Germany’s notable acceptance of over one million refugees from Syria, where anti-Semitic propaganda has been a key feature of the Assad family’s overall messaging, has both triggered both a rise in Germany’s far-right and brought Germany’s Jewish populations into contact with a new type of anti-Semitism developed as one method of control in the Assad dictatorship.

The uncritically anti-Israel and anti-Semitic tropes that have been taught, promoted, or tolerated in Syria pose a new set of challenges to German authorities who are still wrestling with their country’s past. Germany, because of its history, has accepted upon itself a greater responsibility than other European countries to take in refugees. Now it must take on another major responsibility: effectively educating these communities about the Holocaust and the insidious nature of anti-Semitism.

I am particularly conscious of this issue as a Syrian who now calls Germany home. Before the start of the Syrian civil war, I traveled to Europe with the intention of learning the skills I would need to open a wine bar in the old city of Damascus. But my sojourn to the German countryside opened my eyes to much more than the intricacies of the wine industry. There, I confronted the root of my own prejudices towards Jews while in the process coming to a realization about the role anti-Semitism plays in own country’s deception of its people. […]

Many of these refugees fled from Syria—one of the most anti-Semitic countries on earth—to Germany, which is still repairing its complex and fraught relationship with the Jewish people. Now, Germany must recognize and seek understand the embedded nature of anti-Semitism in Syria to better help its newest residents to live lives free of state-sponsored prejudice. 
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Netherlands: Record number of antisemitic incidents documented

Via The Jerusalem Post:
A boy told his Jewish classmate that ”all the Jews must die.”

Dutch Jewry’s watchdog for antisemitism has recorded the highest number of antisemitic incidents ever observed in a calendar year.

The group, the Center for Information and Documentation on Israel, or CIDI, has been monitoring antisemitism in the Netherlands for about 30 years. They divided the 182 incidents in 2019 — an increase of 35 percent from 2018 — into six categories in a report released Monday, including online abuse and vandalism.

Of those, the category of real-life cases — involving threats, insults and assaults on the street or in the workplace — saw the largest increase, more than doubling from 27 cases in 2018 to 61 last year.

Eighteen incidents of real-life antisemitism were committed by activists or supporters of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, who during rallies in central Amsterdam called counter protesters “cockroaches” and kikes,” CIDI wrote.
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Sunday, February 16, 2020

Spain: Trivialising the Holocaust to advance a completely unrelated political agenda

Trivialising the Holocaust in Europe to make an unrelated political point…

Via AJC Transatlantic Institute:
Dear Clara Ponsatí, amid a debate on antisemitism in the European Parliament, you chose to trivialize the Holocaust and instrumentalize the genocide of six million Jews to advance a completely unrelated political agenda. Please retract this unacceptable remark.
Spanish Member of the European Parliament Clara Ponsatí in her first speech at the European Parliament argued that Spanish "intolerance" against the Jews inspired Adolf Hitler to perpetrate the Holocaust. Ponsati added that Spain has now replaced the Jews with the Catalans with its intolerance. Ponsatí's intervention took place during a debate against anti-Semitism, racism and hate in Europe.

More detail @ e-notícies (in Spanish)

Norwegian Peoples Aid (NPA) still camaigning against Israel

Via European Jewish Press (EJP):
NGOs with terrorist ties were involved in the posting on Wednesday of the U.N. Human Rights Council’s blacklist of 112 companies with ties to Israeli settlements released on Wednesday, according to an Israeli Ministry of Strategic Affairs examination. […]

Finally, Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA) signed the November 2018 letter to Bachelet calling for the blacklist’s publication.

In April 2018, U.S. authorities announced that NPA—an NGO that conducts humanitarian activities and had been receiving American Government funding for years - was fined $2 million by the United States following an investigation that found that between 2012 and 2016, the NPA transferred funds for Gazan youth-empowerment projects, in which Hamas and PFLP operatives took part.

The investigation also revealed that the NPA provided various services to Iran between 2001 and 2008. Following these findings, it was determined that the organization’s reports to the U.S. Agency for International Development in these contexts were found to be false.  
“This is another disgraceful decision by the Human Rights Council, which proves once again the U.N.’s consistent anti-Semitism and Israel-hatred,” said Israeli Strategic Affairs Minister Gilad Erdan. “The UNHRC, which consists of tyrannical states and despot regimes, proves once again that it is a rotten institution that makes delusional decisions which have no connection to actual human rights.” 
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NGO Monitor report on Norwegian Peoples Aid (NPA)

Saturday, February 15, 2020

Sweden: Two reality TV show participants make anti-Jewish statements

Via The Times of Israel:
Two contestants were kicked off a Swedish reality show after having a conversation in which one said she hates Jews, while a third who remains has previously expressed support for neo-Nazi ideas on social media. The comments, made during a live airing of the popular show “Big Brother,” drew a swift response from the network airing the show, as well as wide media coverage in Sweden.

Jewish community leaders also responded with concern, noting a rise in anti-Semitism across the Scandinavian country. […]

On Thursday, Kim Kamal, 21, could be heard complaining to fellow contestant Isabel Pereira, 24, about his former boss. Then he said, “She was a Jew, so I get it.”

“I hate Jews,” Pereira responded with a laugh.

Pereira was asked to leave the show shortly after she made the comments, while Kamal was told to do so the following day. Pereira later apologized for the comments in an Instagram post.

The fact that three out of the 13 participants of the popular reality TV show’s contestants this year have been involved in controversies around anti-Semitism prompted a leading Swedish columnist to ask whether attacking Jews has become a fashionable way to “stir the pot.”

Kristofer Ahlström, a columnist in Dagens Nyheter, one of Sweden’s biggest newspapers, said that in the 1990s, Swedish TV shows would bring on certain types of opinionated people, such as “a loudmouthed feminist” or “a vegan,” in order to create controversial conversations that would draw viewers.
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Friday, February 14, 2020

Ukraine: Escaping anti-Semitism, 184 immigrants arrived in Israel on International Holocaust Remembrance Day

Via European Jewish Press (EJP):
On International Holocaust Remembrance Day, Israel’s Diaspora Ministry published its report on anti-Semitism in 2019. According to the report, Ukraine was one of the countries in the former Soviet Union that had actually seen a decline in the number of anti-Semitic incidents overall. Nevertheless, anti-Semitic sentiment in Ukraine is still far from being eradicated. In fact, Ukraine saw an increase in the use of anti-Semitic rhetoric during the second half of 2019.

A significant number of the olim also said they felt threatened and were attacked on a frequent basis because of their Jewish identity. For the Shopotinsky family of four, moving from the city of Kryvyi Rih to Israel was a decision they made without any doubts or reservations. Alexander, the family’s father and husband, said: “I have always been proud of my Judaism. Despite the mocking and scorn I received from every angle, I did not change my family name. They would harass me and call me various insults attacking my Jewish identity. All of these challenges made it clear to me that there was no way I and my wife Victoria (35) would allow our children, Sergey (13) and Elizabetha (7) to grow up with similar, unfortunate experiences. It was therefore critical for us to bring our family to Israel where our children can live openly as Jews and be proud of their Judaism.” The Shopotinsky family plans to settle in the city of Haifa where the couple seeks to find work and adapt to life in Israel. […]  
Of the 184 olim from Ukraine that landed on Monday, 31 are children under eighteen, with the youngest being a one-year-old baby. The oldest oleh (new immigrant) is an 83-year-old Holocaust survivor. The city of Haifa is absorbing 20 olim, the largest portion of olim, followed by Netanya with 16 olim, Nahariya with 14 olim, Bat Yam and Acre each receiving 12 as well as Rishon LeZion and Kiryat Yam both of which are taking in 11 olim.
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France: The most dangerous place to be a Jew in Europe today is France

Judith Miller via City Journal:
Anti-Semitism, toujours - A new report highlights the dangers confronted by French Jews.

The most dangerous place to be a Jew in Europe today is France—that’s the conclusion of an as-yet unpublished, two-year report on anti-Semitism in 11 European countries, conducted by former NYPD commissioner Raymond W. Kelly for Ronald S. Lauder, the former U.S. Ambassador to Austria.

Lauder, president of the World Jewish Congress, has donated heavily to efforts combatting anti-Semitism in Europe and the United States. He asked Kelly, New York’s longest-serving police commissioner, to assess the growth of the anti-Semitism sweeping Europe and suggest practical ways to strengthen the security of Jewish communities and institutions.

Though the resurgence of anti-Semitism in Europe has been widely noted and condemned, Kelly’s report concludes that the threat to France’s 450,000 Jews—the world’s third-largest community, after Israel and the U.S.—is the most “acute.” Attacks and threats against French Jews surged 74 percent from 2017 to 2018, the report finds, and preliminary data for the first half of 2019 indicate “further intensification,” with another 75 percent increase last year. Moreover, the official estimates of some 500 attacks and anti-Semitic acts per year are “notoriously under reported,” according to the study, which contends that “no responsible individuals or even government representatives place much credence in these numbers.”  
Kelly and two additional investigators, David Cohen and Mitchell D. Silber, both former senior NYPD counterterrorism officials, blame the French government for failing to respond to the almost-constant violence against and harassment of French Jews. Government funds to the Jewish community total just $3.7 million a year—“about one-fifth of what British Jews receive from their government, though France’s Jewish population is roughly double that of Britain.” […]

While the report doesn’t urge Jews to emigrate, it suggests a bleak future for those who remain, given the projected population growth among French Muslims. The French Muslim population now stands at some 6 million, and a recent Pew study projects a 50 percent increase in their numbers by 2050, even with no additional immigration. […]

Overall, however, the report seems pessimistic. “Radical Islam is universally seen in France as a physical threat,” Kelly and his team conclude. “And this more violence-prone anti-Semitism is certain to worsen.”
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Thursday, February 13, 2020

Germany can’t stop loving Iran but should stop courting the country that denies the Holocaust

Matthias Küntzel via Tablet Magazine:
Last week, Germany’s president, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, mistakenly congratulated the Iranian regime on the 41st anniversary of the Khomenist revolution that established the Islamic Republic of Iran. On Feb. 7, the president announced that this year he would not send a congratulatory telegram to Iran’s rulers. But Steinmeier’s change of heart was too late—according to the Berlin-based Tagesspiegel, a congratulatory telegram had already been sent by the Federal President’s Office to the German Embassy in Tehran and then forwarded to the Iranian authorities due to a “breakdown” in the communication system.

The contradiction between the delivery of the official congratulations and the German president’s public attempt to disavow the substance of its message revealed the Janus-headed nature of Germany’s relationship to Iran. If there is any country that might be expected to distance itself from Iran, it is Germany because of its history and its special relationship with Israel. But the opposite is the case. Germany of all European countries is also the weakest link in the chain when it comes to renewed sanctions. Why? […]

Back in the 1990s, when the Clinton administration launched a major diplomatic campaign against the threat of an Iranian bomb, this fact was not just puzzling, but a serious bone of contention. In 1995, President Bill Clinton prohibited all American firms from trading with Iran—an effort at sanctions that was systematically undermined by intensified German exports to Iran. Hossain Mousavian, Iran’s ambassador to Germany at that time, mischievously recorded the great delight this caused in Tehran: “Iranian decision-makers were well aware in the 1990s of Germany’s significant role in breaking the economic chains with which the United States had surrounded Iran. … Iran viewed its dialogue and relations with Germany as an important means toward the circumvention of the anti-Iranian policies of the United States.”

In September 2004, German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer from the Green Party confirmed Mousavian’s assessment in a speech disseminated by the German government: “We Europeans have constantly advised our Iranian partners in their own well-founded interest to view us as their protective shield.” Europe as the shield between Iran and America: Not to protect the United States from the Islamists, but the Islamists from the United States. Such a metaphor could only occur to someone who sees America as the adversary and the Khomenist revolution as meriting protection. [..]

On Jan. 15, 2020, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas explained how he sees this difference in the Bundestag: “We rely on reasonable diplomacy instead of maximum pressure” like the United States does. Maas forgot to add that Germany has no other choice. Germany is an economic superpower but a military dwarf. As soon as there is a threat of military action, Germany is no longer relevant. Maas, however, presents this shortcoming as a moral triumph: The Iran nuclear deal is held up as the best example of the correctness of the German insistence that changes can only be achieved through dialogue. Little thought, however, is given to what exactly 40 years of “dialogue with Tehran” have actually achieved. […] 
Instead of clinging to the failed JCPOA, whose provisions will soon expire anyway, Germany should use the end of this deal as an opportunity to fundamentally change its policy on Iran. Its current relationship is not based on a rational consideration of interests, but on nostalgia, illusion, and disregard for Israel’s survival interests. It is time to finally support those who are rising up against the Iranian terrorist regime instead of the butchers in the regime. It is necessary to use severe sanctions to force the regime to abandon its nuclear weapons ambition, so as to avoid the alternative of war. Finally, the need for the country that was responsible for the Holocaust yesterday to stop courting the country that denies the Holocaust today is long overdue.
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Wednesday, February 12, 2020

UK: Peter Hitchens calls Yasser Arafat an "awful old antisemite"

Peter Hitchens column @ Mail on Sunday:
Pointless 'peace plans' that fuel violence

Whatever happened to Middle East peace? Some sort of deal between Israel and the local Arabs was, for decades, the vital goal of diplomacy.

US presidents were obliged to try to achieve it. Both sides were repeatedly dragged to summits where they were forced to shake hands and smile at each other while clenching their teeth.

I was once present at one of these horrible staged occasions, on the White House lawn in September 1993, when a smiling Bill Clinton compelled Israel’s Yitzhak Rabin and that awful old antisemite Yasser Arafat (who once said ‘I have no use for Jews. They are and remain Jews’) to pretend to be friends.

That particular episode ended with the murder of Yitzhak Rabin by an ultra-Zionist fanatic and with a renewed wave of organised Arab violence on the West Bank of the Jordan.

In fact, this has been the outcome of almost all such efforts: more division, more violence, more barriers, more checkpoints.
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Europe: EU-Israel Association Council has not met since 2012

Via European Jewish Press (EJP):
Spanish MEP asks EU leadership to re-establish meeting of EU-Israel Association Council which has not convened since 2012.  
"Israel has been a strategic ally of the European Union, even before the signature in 1995 of the association agreement between the two, though unfortunately the association council, which this agreement envisions, has not held a formal meeting since 2012," wrote Antonio López-Istúriz White in his questions to the EU leaders.

He regretted that "some Member States are fixed on blocking the celebration of these meetings, as a way of boycotting Israel due to the country´s policy vis-a-vis to Palestine."

The EU-Israel Association Council, the main ministerial body governing the EU-Israel Association Council, has not met since 2012 due to disagreements over the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, despite intense bilateral cooperation in several sectors such as trade, technology, science, security, culture, education… Several European Commissioners have visited Israel.

The Association Council was originally created in the framework of the 2000 EU-Israel Association Council to be convened every year. Generally, it is held at Foreign Minister level.

But no EU-Israel ministerial meeting since eight years while since then the EU has convened Association Councils with Lebanon, Jordan and Egypt almost yearly.

This is why the Chairman of the European Parliament delegation for relations with Israel, Spanish MEP Antonio López-Istúriz White has addressed questions to both the EU Council President Charles Michel and EU foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell on this issue, urging the re-establishment of the EU-Israel Association Council under the new EU leadership.
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Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Europe: Islamic University of Gaza has project partnerships with 130 European universities and research centers located in 21 EU countries

Note: For Portugal alone, five universities are associated with the Islamic University of Gaza: Universidade do Minho (coordinator), Universidade do Algarve, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Universidade do Porto and Universidade de Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro (JAMIES project).

Via Gatestone Institute:
Palestinian musicians in the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip are facing death threats after a Muslim scholar, Sheikh Mohammed Sliman al-Farra, published a fatwa (a legal opinion or ruling issued by an Islamic scholar) prohibiting a local band from performing.

Farra works for Islamic University of Gaza, a member of four regional and international associations of higher education, and has project partnerships with more than 130 European universities and research centers located in 21 EU countries.

Published on November 23, 2019, the fatwa targets Sol Band, a Palestinian music group established in the Gaza Strip eight years ago:
"The music group Sol Band, which has been roaming the streets of the Gaza Strip, has been violating God's sanctities by promoting tabarruj (women dressing up immodestly in violation of Islamic teachings) and the mixing of the sexes... Their actions weaken the young men and encourage sinners. Indulging it leads to great corruption and evil and results in behavioral and intellectual deviation among young people. It is not permissible to promote or meet with them or listen to their songs, even if they are patriotic."
[…] The campaign of incitement against Sol Band did not surprise many Palestinians, particularly those living in the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip. The only songs Hamas and its followers want are those that promote hate and violence.

One Hamas song, released in 2017, is titled "Zionist, You Will Perish in Gaza."

Another Hamas song threatens to eat Jews alive. "I will eat you alive, tastes best without salt, Zionist – Yes, yes, you." The lyrics and rhythmic beat are accompanied by animation, in which rockets are being fired from the Gaza Strip towards Israel.

A recent Hamas song includes many images of violence and actual terror attacks. Among the scenes showed during the rendition are stabbings, car-ramming attacks and explosions. The lyrics include the following statements:
"Where are you, O rebel; wrap the explosive belt around [your waist]; blow up the Zionists, don't fear; scatter the enemies' body parts, make the skulls fly in the sky."
The members of Sol Band did not call for "scattering the body parts" of Jews, and that is probably the main reason why they are being targeted by Hamas and its allies in the Gaza Strip. The musicians would have been welcomed by Hamas had they called on Palestinians to "make the skulls of (Jews) fly in the sky." This is the only type of song that the Muslim extremists are willing to tolerate.

What is disturbing, however, is the silence of the international community, specifically the EU partners of Islamic University in Gaza, where Farra serves as a lecturer. Do the Europeans working with the university condone threats against musicians?

Or are the Europeans ignoring Farra's fatwa because it was issued by a Muslim against Muslims? The EU countries and educational institutions are most likely ignoring such threats because they were not made by Israel.

Had Sol Band been threatened by Israel, the Europeans and other international human rights organizations would have issued immediate statements condemning Israel.

The silence of the international community emboldens Hamas and scholars such as Farra, and allows them to continue their repressive measures against Palestinians. It also allows Hamas and terror groups to continue calling for blowing up the skulls of Jews and eating them alive.
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Europe: 55% of Israelis see the EU as Israel’s "enemy"

Via The Jerusalem Post:
Last October, the EU Delegation to Israel published an unusual tender, worth €285,000, soliciting the assistance of local public relations companies in order to “change the negative image” of Europe in Israel.

The proposal cites an EU-commissioned survey which demonstrates the extent of Israeli public mistrust of Europe. According to the survey, 55% see the EU as Israel’s “enemy,” while only 18% identify it as a “friend.” According to the Israeli news outlet ICE, the results of the survey reaffirm negative perceptions toward EU member states on a number of fronts, including their funding to non-governmental organizations (NGOs), claims that the EU supports the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaign directly or indirectly, and even accusations that it “supports terror entities indirectly.”

These attitudes, apparently held by many Israelis, did not emerge suddenly. The EU is completely out of sync with Israelis on the issues that strike the deepest emotional chords, and is seen as tone deaf, at best, in appreciating the Israeli perspective.

Even if the public learns about the EU’s investment in cutting-edge scientific research at Israeli universities, they will not soon forget about how Europe flirts with BDS with product labeling or treating the anti-Israel movement as merely free speech.

Israelis see that the EU engages selectively with a narrow ideological group of civil society, such as B’Tselem and Breaking the Silence. They hear the repeated condemnations of Israeli policy concerning Area C of the West Bank, as if this is the major issue on the EU’s agenda.

Then there is EU and European funding for organizations that delegitimize Israel, including those that have ties to groups which the EU itself designates as terrorist entities. Two months after the European tender proposal, the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) announced it had uncovered a 50-person terrorist network operated in the West Bank by one of these groups, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP). The statement named several leading PFLP figures, several who currently or previously worked for European-funded NGOs in financial roles.

Samer Arbid, suspected of having commanded a PFLP terrorist cell that murdered a 17-year old Israeli girl in August 2019, worked as the accountant of the PFLP-affiliated NGO Union of Agricultural Work Committees (UAWC) at the time of his arrest. UAWC is funded directly and indirectly by the Netherlands, Germany, France, Belgium, Spain and Norway. Arbid previously worked as an accountant for the PFLP-tied NGO Addameer, funded by Norway, Ireland, Spain, Switzerland and the German Heinrich Böll Foundation. 
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Monday, February 10, 2020

Ireland: Will Sinn Féin’s ascent hurt Israel-Ireland relations?

Via The Jerusalem Post:
With Sinn Féin, the political arm of the former Irish Republican Army, surging in exit polls in Saturday’s election, there is a real possibility that the next government of Ireland could take anti-Israel steps in the near future.

Sinn Féin, which has long held anti-Israel positions, reached 22.3% of the vote for the Daíl, Ireland’s lower house of parliament, the highest share of the national vote it has ever received, according to exit polls. […]

“Fine Gael, which has been in power since 2011, has been friendlier to Israel than Fianna Fáil or, for that matter, Sinn Féin, of course, which has been known to be extremely anti-Israel and very close to the Palestinian delegation in Ireland,” said Daniela Traub, Israel’s former deputy ambassador to Ireland. […]

Still, Irish journalist Michael Fitzgerald said: “You never lose votes for being anti-Israel here. Just about every party supports anti-Israel measures.”

There are two issues on the agenda when it comes to Israel and Ireland: the “Occupied Territories Bill” and possible recognition of a Palestinian state.

Both Sinn Féin and Fianna Fáil said ahead of the election they support the bill to criminalize doing business with Israelis from the West Bank, east Jerusalem and the Golan Heights. They also said they would recognize a Palestinian state. Both are popular positions shared by almost every party running.

If the “Occupied Territories Bill” becomes law, it could fine merchants in Ireland that sell products from the West Bank, Golan Heights or east Jerusalem for up to €250,000 or sentence them to up to five years in jail.

Sinn Féin’s election platform said it will “ban goods from Israel’s illegal colonial settlements in Palestine from entering the Irish market by implementing the Occupied Territories Bill.”
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France: Muslim anti-Semitism, Islamism, terror and "internal alyah"

Via Harry's Place - Cross-posted from Karl Pfeifer at  The German version was published @ Jüdische Allgemeiner (Frankreich "Die Täter sind tabu")

Georges Bensoussan’s Moroccan-Jewish family was forced to emigrate to France. As a historian, he has specialized in the Jewish history of Europe. He has also studied anti-Semitism among Muslim immigrant children for more than 20 years. He documented France’s "lost areas" [territoires perdus de la République] – the suburbs, the migrant social centers and the aggressive Islamism that exists there. Many politicians and the media remain in denial about these subjects…

Mr. Bensoussan, for some time now, when reading and listening to French media, there is a feeling that a new postmodern language is in vogue. How has this happened?

There is a new language aimed at obscuring reality behind words that mean the exact opposite of what they are saying. The new language wants the listener to doubt his own opinions and so be persuaded that the perceptions of the party, the organization, the elite – that this new „public opinion“ – is really just common sense. […]

There is also the new term "racisé". What does it mean?

Anti-racists propagate the idea of "racized" or to racialize so reviving and reshaping the old concepts of race and new life. As a result, racism has been energized in new ways. As far as anti-Semitism is concerned, people believe that it is now tolerant and compassionate to reject Jews in the cause of anti-racism. This leads to the paradox of ostracizing the State of Israel, as a "lesson from the Shoah" (can one speak of a lesson in relation to this catastrophe?). This really means that the Jews should be expelled from humanity again. […]
Could the next upheaval be more violent than the last two?

Politicians are aware that the next upheaval could turn into an uprising. You would no longer be dealing just with Molotov cocktails, but with weapons of war. The widespread illegal trade in weapons is well known, it takes place alongside the drug business. The political class and the security services are aware of this-the resulting uncertainty does not encourage openness, but instead, denial. […]
How do the Jews who live in the suburbs, react to anti-social Muslim neighbors?

With what is called the "inner alyah".

Does that mean they leave the problematic neighborhoods and move away to other parts of the city or regions?

Yes, they are safer there. For example, 80 percent of Jews have left the Department with the most problems – Seine-Saint-Denis in the north of Paris – during the past ten years.

So their first reaction is moving away – not necessarily abroad, but to quieter areas?

For example, in Paris, in recent years, the 17th arrondissement in the northwest of the city has become France’s most important Jewish quarter with 40,000 inhabitants, with a variety of kosher grocery stores, butchers and restaurants.

Would the next step be emigration to another country?

Between 2000 and 2018, 52,000 Jews departed for Israel, and we do not know how many emigrated to Québec in French-speaking Canada. Nobody denies the cause, which is anti-Semitism. However, the anti-Semites themselves are untouchable. The dead Jews are honored so that the living can be better forgotten. It is a pathetic display of defeat, combining denial and cowardice.
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-   France: Leading Jewish scholar Georges Bensoussan prosecuted for speaking out against Muslim antisemitism 
-   France: A double whammy for the Jews of France 
-   France: 67% of French people indifferent to Jews leaving France

Sunday, February 9, 2020

Europe: Our European enemy

Via Victor Rosenthal @ Abu Yehuda:
Our state is tiny, in size and population. The Nations didn’t want it to exist at all, and when they couldn’t stop it they did their best to keep it small. There aren’t so many Jews in the world, anyway; millennia of oppression and murder have kept our numbers down, and today there are millions who are “Jewish by extraction” but are assimilated enough to other cultures to be lost forever to the Jewish people.

In all the world there are fewer than 15 million Jews, in Israel fewer than 7 million. But there are forces arrayed against us that are unique in their scope and viciousness. […]

What’s true for Jews goes triple for their state. I won’t repeat the depressing statistics about the number of UN resolutions condemning Israel that pass every year, and the fact that it is consistently attacked there for crimes that it did not commit while countries that do engage in murder, aggression, and oppression are never mentioned. […]

After the war there was a general revulsion in what was left of the countries that had participated in the biggest pogrom in history, as well as an understanding on the part of the Jewish remnant that our state had to be established regardless of the cost, which prevailed against the resistance – imagine, after all that! – the resistance from Britain and the Arabs.

But the antisemitism of Europe didn’t go away, although it was pushed under cover by the embarrassment of its involvement in the pogrom of pogroms.  […] And while there is still enough revulsion left to prevent them from repeating their attempt to liquidate our people, it hasn’t stopped them from paying to create the conditions for others to do it for them.

So we have European powers, particularly Germany (of all nations) and the hyper-civilized Scandinavian countries, the ones who abhor physical violence and have made the expression of racist sentiments illegal, spending millions of Euros of their citizens’ taxes on enterprises designed to weaken the Jewish state and set the stage for its destruction by Arabs or Iranians who aren’t squeamish about direct action with guns and bombs to accomplish the goal desired – but never said out loud in public – in Brussels, Berlin, and Stockholm.

European money keeps numerous international and Israeli organizations afloat, usually ostensibly in defense of human rights, but practically focusing on the rights and national aspirations of one particular group, the Palestinian Arabs. If you ask an honest Palestinian, he will tell you that he aspires, above all else, to violently kick the Jews out of all of the Land of Israel, in which he believes they have no right to live (except as a dhimmi minority), and certainly no right to have a sovereign state.

The Europeans, realizing that this aspiration smells uncomfortably like the 1940s, insist that what they want is only to divide Israel along the 1949 armistice line and set up a Palestinian Arab state in the eastern part. Then this state will live happily alongside Israel, with its 9-mile wide waist, and the “Middle Eastern Conflict” will be over. This is called the “two-state solution,” but of course won’t solve anything except the difficulties the Arabs have today in hitting Tel Aviv and Ben-Gurion Airport from their territory with the cheapest and simplest of mortars. […]

For example – and this is just one of countless similar examples – the European Union has granted more than half a million dollars (500,000 Euros) to an Israeli NGO whose objective is to change the attitude of Russian-speaking Israelis, who have always leaned politically right – for obvious reasons – and who have opposed the creation of a Palestinian state. The EU says that the grant is intended to
… promote conditions for a negotiated settlement of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and potential shifts in public opinion among the Russian-speaking community by building confidence and trust in the two-state solution among a population that has traditionally rejected and been omitted from the process, as well as to deconstruct a negative view of the Palestinian narrative.
It should be obvious that the political attitudes of Russian-speaking Israelis are nobody’s business but Israel’s. But this item provides a window into the overall program of the EU and individual European countries, which work on numerous levels to bring about the partition of the Land of Israel and the establishment of a Palestinian Arab state.

This and other manipulative programs, including financial support for international and Israeli NGOs that propagandize, support BDS, and engage in lawfare against Israel, complement the EU’s investment in building infrastructure for Palestinians in Area C, the part of Judea and Samaria that according to the Oslo accords is under Israeli civil control. These building projects, done without permits or permission, are intended to create facts on the ground that will make it more difficult for Israel to retain control of these areas in any future deal. At the same time, international pressure on Israel to not build in the territories, even inside existing settlements that will certainly end up as part of Israel, has been effective. Despite news reports that “1000 new homes have been approved” and so forth, very few buildings have actually been constructed. And illegal Palestinian settlements have not been removed.

Make no mistake – the Palestinian leadership has no interest in a state in the territories except as a stepping stone to the replacement of Israel by an Arab state, and the death or dispersal of about half of the Jewish people. They say it themselves over and over.

Are officials in the EU and individual countries that support this project so stupid or blind and deaf as to fail to understand that? Do they not know that the funds that they provide to the Palestinian Authority are used to pay terrorists? Do they not see that UNRWA, of which they are now the prime funder, educates Palestinian children to hate?

I don’t believe it.
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Saturday, February 8, 2020

Belgium is outraged by Israel’s criticism of Belgium’s invitation of terror-linked NGO official at the UN Security Council

Belgium's outrageous systematic campaign to demonize Israel at the United Nations

Via European Jewish Press (EJP):
[…] Israel’s ambassador to Belgium, Emmanuel Nahshon, was summoned to the Belgian foreign ministry Friday morning following "harsh" comments made on social media about the invitation addressed by Belgium to an NGO official suspected of links to a terror group to speak at a session of the United Nations Security Council.

"We are very surprised, astonished and even outraged by the comments made in articles but mainly on social media on this issue," a Belgian foreign ministry spokesperson told the European Jewish Press (EJP). "We have summoned the Ambassador of Israel this morning to express this astonishment because he retweeted certain tweets while he has as Ambassador the official capacity of representing the State of Israel in Belgium." 
"We expressed our very clear disagreement with that both on substance and form," the spoksperson, Arnaud Gaspart, said.

On Thursday, the Belgian chargé d’affaires in Israel Pascal Buffin was summoned to the Israeli foreign ministry for a reprimand over moves the country has made as a member of the UN Security Council, in particular the fact that Belgium, which is presiding over the United Nations Security Council since February, has invited Brad Parker, a senior official of the NGO Defense for Children – Palestine (DCI-P) to brief the council’s members.

DCI-P, which calls itself an organization defending the human rights of Palestinian children and alleges Israel is committing war crimes, supports the anti-Israel BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) movement. […]

"Belgium is continuing to adopt an anti-Israel line in the UN, but must know that it will have a price. Israel’s denigrators will enter a battle they weren’t looking for," he added.

"Belgium has positioned itself as one of the Security Council member states most hostile toward Israel," the Israeli foreign minuistry spokesperson Lior Hayat said.

In a tweet, the Israeli ambassador to Belgium wrote "unfortunately Belgium has chosen to invite terror supporters to a Security Council debate. This is extremely disappointing and we will express our outrage in the strongest terms."

Contacted by European Jewish Press, the Belgian Foreign Ministry spokesperson explained that the reason behind the invitation made to Parker to speak at the Security Council was the fact that Belgium currently chairs the New York task force on children in armed conflicts, which is a subsidiary body of the United Nations Security Council.
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