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November 30, 2015 / 18 Kislev, 5776
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Amsterdam’

MK Hanin Zoabi Keynote Speaker at Kristallnacht Commemoration

Wednesday, October 21st, 2015

(JNi.media) Readers working on their annual list of biggest Chutzpa stories of 2015 will likely include the following invite: On November 8, for 15 hours, Amsterdam will commemorate Kristallnacht, Night of Broken Glass of November 9, 1938, with an event at the monument of Jewish resistance behind the Amsterdam town hall, organized by the Nederlands Palestina Komitee, with keynote speaker Hanin Zoabi.

With her credentials of open support for the Hamas terror government in Gaza and her fierce promotion of violence against Jews in Judea and Samaria, it is hard to imagine a less appropriate choice for commemorating the brutal burning down of synagogues and Jewish businesses by the Nazi thugs, unless the purpose of the event were to teach the Dutch masses how to go about burning synagogues and Jewish businesses. And yet, the NPK invitation is there for all to see, appointing the participant in the May 2010 Mavi Marmara Flotilla, meant to delegitimize Israel’s right to self defense, to speak on behalf of Jewish victims.

One of the three female speakers at the event, MK Zoabi—who compared Israel to Nazi Germany more than once—will use her speech to decry Israeli discrimination against Palestinians, according to the announcement, for the following reason: it turns out the annual Kristallnacht commemoration Platform in previous years has always paid attention to the rising racism in the world—Germany, Austria, Greece—however, it never touched Israel, possibly because the organizers in previous years hesitated to attack Jews on the day commemorating attacks on Jews. That’s over, apparently, and “given recent events,” the invite says, “it is now inevitable that we discuss racism in Israel,” seeing as the Centraal Joods Overleg (Central Jewish Board) in the Netherlands is running its own commemoration, “this taboo is broken this year.”

It is noteworthy that the Nederlands Palestina Komitee mentions that Zoabi is a democratically elected member of the Israeli parliament in the same sentence that announces she would be attacking Israel’s policy of discrimination against Arabs. Like we said, do consider this story for your best Chutzpas of 2015 list.

Dutch Jews Reject Plan for Syrian Refugee Shelter, Citing Anti-Semitism

Wednesday, October 14th, 2015

(JNi.media) The Jewish community of Amsterdam says it is worried about the proposed refugee shelter in Amstelveen-Noord, a suburban town in the Amsterdam metropolitan area, NL Times reported. Local residents were informed on Monday night about the new shelter, which will house 400 refugees, mostly from Syria and Iraq. The proposed location is an office building less than half a mile away from Buitenveldert, a neighborhood of Amsterdam which is considered the city’s modern Jewish quarter, with a Synagogue, Jewish schools, nursing homes, shops and kosher restaurants. Buitenveldert is also the largest Jewish community in the Netherlands.

The Dutch Central Jewish Board is concerned that there will be unpleasant, if not dangerous incidents because of the close proximity of the new shelter to Jewish homes. “Let there be no doubt that the Jewish community is overwhelmingly for the reception of war refugees, but we have major concerns”, chairman Ron van der Wieken said on Monday. “These people come from countries such as Syria and Iraq, who traditionally take an extremely harsh tone against Jews. These people are largely brainwashed to hate Jews. You should not underestimate it.”

Attorney Ron Eisenmann, who serves as President of the Center for Information and Documentation Israel tweeted: “Not a good plan, Syrian refugees in the middle of a Jewish neighborhood.” His tweet received an angry reaction from Laura Bromet, an alderwoman in Waterland, who tweeted back: “Maybe you can point out a Syrian neighborhood where they can go.”

The south Amsterdam faction of the People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy, aka VVD Amsterdam Zuid, where Eisenmann is a faction leader, released a statement saying they are concerned about the support—or lack thereof from the residents of Buitenveldert. “Given the disquiet among residents in the area and the importance of social safety, the VVD insists that adequate security and surveillance will be present in the district.”

VVD also insists that the new shelter would only accommodate families, NL Times reported.

Dutch Leftists Spare Tel Aviv from ‘Twinning’ with Amsterdam

Friday, June 26th, 2015

Dutch leftists have succeeded in blocking a planned twining agreement between Tel Aviv and Amsterdam and even rejected a compromise that would have included Ramallah in the agreement.

The refusal of the pro-Arab groups to accept compromise is the perfect example of the Palestinian Authority-leftist hate of cooperating on anything with Israel.

Amsterdam Mayor Eberhard van der Laan was impressed with Tel Aviv, which has becomes Israel’s showcase city for homosexuality, but the left-wing withdrew the plan after left-wing GroenLinks Green party and the Socialists refused to back the twinning because of the “occupation.”

GroenLinks leader Rutger Groot Wassink said:

 As long as Israel occupies Palestine, structurally infringes human rights and continues its settlement policy. [no agreement is feasible].

Amsterdam, where Islam now vies with Christianity as the most widely practiced religion, is known for legalized prostitution and a “Live and let live” society is becoming a bit hypocritical in the face of the rapidly rising Muslim population.

The mayor has taken a stand in favor of multi-culture but criticized other parties during an election campaign for distributing campaign leaflets in minority languages.

He believes in assimilation, but a Muslim plurality in Amsterdam is not far away, and it remains to be seen if its leaders’ policy won’t be “live and let live so long as you live like us.”

Amsterdam has lost Tel Aviv as a twin-sister city. Tel Aviv also feels the loss, but there are enough “Tzadiklim” in the city that it has been spared official ties with Amsterdam.

Dutch Community Rediscovers Forgotten Mikvahs

Sunday, April 6th, 2014

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (JTA) — A Dutch Jewish organization rediscovered two ancient ritual baths that had been forgotten after the Holocaust.

In reporting about the find Friday, the Crescas Jewish education institute wrote on its website that large parts of the 19th-century ritual baths, or mikvahs, were unearthed last week at a Jewish community building in the northern city of Groningen.

“The mikvahs are an exciting find,” Crescas wrote. “They are remarkably well-preserved. The marble of one of the baths was partially damaged during renovations.”

The mikvahs, which are seven-feet deep, have seven marble stairs, according to Crescas.

The Jewish community of Groningen, which was nearly wiped out during the Holocaust, sold the building in 1952 to the municipality, which renovated the building and rededicated it as a seat of the Jewish community in 1981. The mikvahs were covered up and exposed only recently, after members of the local Jewish community chanced upon blueprints of the building, the RTV Noord television station reported.

“The find is so important because Jewish life stopped here in 1943: the Jews were gone. A few buildings that were essential to the Jewish community remained: the synagogue, the old people’s home, the Jewish school, but the mikvah, which is also essential, was gone. No one knew where it was,” Marcel Wichgers, director of Groningen’s Folkingestraat Synagogue Association, or SFS, told RTV.

SFS was unaware until recently that the two mikvahs lay under the floor of a room it used for storage, Crescas wrote.

The Reformatorisch Dagblad daily described the find as one of the most important archeological discoveries made in Groningen in recent years. The structure is now opened to spectators twice a week, on Wednesdays and Sundays.

In 1930, the Jewish population in Groningen was 2,408, according to the Amsterdam’s Jewish Historical Museum. In 1951, there were 225 Jews, and currently only a few dozen Jews live in the northern city.

New Anne Frank Theater to Open in Amsterdam

Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

A new theater dedicated to the story of Anne Frank is slated to open in the Dutch capital ahead of the 70th anniversary of the teenage diarist’s deportation and death.

The new theater, which is in the final stages of construction, was first shown to media on Wednesday and will feature a permanent show titled ANNE that was developed at the request of the Basel-based Anne Frank Foundation — a not-for-profit organization founded in 1963 by Anne Frank’s father, Otto Frank. The Anne Frank Foundation is the sole owner of copyrights of writings of the Frank family including the hugely famous diary of Anne Frank from her days in hiding in Amsterdam.

The play, which is set to debut in May, will feature a cast of approximately 20 Dutch actors and simultaneous translation to seven languages, according to Ilan Roos of Imagine Nation, the commercial Dutch firm which produced the show and built the new theater.

The new Theater Amsterdam seats 1,100 people in 4,000 square yards of floor space.

Roos declined to disclose how much money the company has invested in the project. Yves Kugelman of the Anne Frank Foundation said royalties from ticket proceeds, which will sell for $50-$100 dollars, will go toward the foundation’s educational work and charity projects for Jewish and non-Jewish causes. The foundation did not participate in production and building costs, he said.

“The play is the first one which is based on all original documents and writings of Anne and Family Frank,” Kugelman told JTA. The foundation developed the script and supervised its historical accuracy, he added.

The new theater is located 1.5 miles northwest of Amsterdam’s Anne Frank House — a separate outfit which runs a museum at the address where the Franks hid until their arrest and deportation to German concentration and death camps in 1944. The Anne Frank House was not involved in the new production.

A special ferry will transport spectators from Amsterdam Central Station to the new theater, producer Kees Abrahams told reporters.

The play, which is being produced by Abrahams and Broadway producer Robin de Levita, is the second theater dramatization of Anne Frank’s diaries that has been performed under supervision of the copyright owners, according to Kugelman.

The first adaptation was written by the American couple Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett and opened in 1955, and was later re-adapted into a movie.

“They did a marvelous job but wrote the play in a different time and based on a selection of materials made by Anne Frank’s father,” said Leon de Winter, the Dutch Jewish novelist who wrote the new show’s script with his wife, Jessica Durlacher. “Jessica and I were privileged to gain access to many additional materials, the entire archive, and to broaden the scope to include what happened before and after the deportation.”

Germany to Pay Amsterdam Jews for ‘Voluntary’ Ghetto Labor

Tuesday, January 21st, 2014

More than 1,000 people have applied for new compensation of a one-time payment of $2,700 from Germany for labor performed in Amsterdam’s Jewish ghetto during the Holocaust.

The compensation is offered to people who lived in three districts of the Dutch capital that served as ghettos for the city’s Jewish community during the German occupation and performed voluntary labor there, the ANP Dutch news agency reported.

The distribution of money for the labor was announced this week by the Dutch Union for Holocaust Survivors, which is known in the Netherlands by its Dutch-language acronym, VBV.

Some 1,200 applicants have submitted requests for payment as compensation for labor performed in the so-called Jodenbuurt in central Amsterdam, the Rivierenbuurt area in the capital’s south and Transvaalbuurt, east of the center, according to VBV.

“Dutch Jews were driven out of their professions and forced into ghettos before their deportation to concentration camps,” VBV Chairwoman Flory Neter told ANP. “In the ghettos of Amsterdam they often did random chores such as sewing bags to feed their families. It wasn’t forced labor but they were coerced to live in the ghettos so it wasn’t voluntary either.”

VBV has negotiated for years with the German government to obtain the compensation and lost a lawsuit against Germany, but was able to obtain the payments in further talks.

Among those eligible for payments are Holocaust survivors who worked in the ghettos as children, Neter also said.

Amsterdam Falafel Joint Takes Israelis for a Non-Kosher Ride

Tuesday, January 14th, 2014

By the time they end up at Baba’s Grillroom in central Amsterdam, Israeli tourists tend to be somewhat distracted.

Situated near the famous Rembrandt Square, this popular and veteran falafel eatery is literally surrounded by pot-selling coffee shops that help make Amsterdam one of the top holiday destinations for Israelis — and especially for the young craving a cheap and top-quality high.

Giggly and thoroughly “mastoolim,” Hebrew slang for baked or stoned, they are likely to experience another dope-related phenomenon: The munchies. And that’s a problem for observant Jews in a city that is not exactly famous for its selection of kosher foods.

How fortunate, then, to chance upon the entrance to Baba’s place, with its promising signs in Hebrew and stars of David. Those sober enough to remain skeptical despite the Jewish symbolism are welcome to see Baba’s kosher certificate — a document signed by three rabbis from the United States.

The only problem is that one of the rabbis is deceased and the other two say they never certified any business in Amsterdam, according to a Jan. 9 report by the NIW Dutch Jewish weekly.

Acting on a tip, the paper sent one of its reporters, Jigal Krant, on an undercover mission that involved dressing up like an Israeli tourist and asking (in English) about the kashrut at Baba’s. Staff showed Krant a certificate signed by three rabbis. But the two living rabbis told NIW they had no idea their name was being used by Baba’s.

When NIW confronted the owners — two Egyptian Christians named Hanna Basta Tawadrous, 48, and Nermin Angali, 34 — they denied ever claiming they had a certificate, which NIW had photographed. Apparently, the new owners bought Baba’s approximately a year ago. To NIW they explained that their meat is kosher because it’s halal. (The NIW report did not investigate whether the meat is, in fact, halal.)

This article was written for JTA by Cnaan Liphshiz.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/amsterdam-falafel-joint-takes-israelis-for-a-non-kosher-ride/2014/01/14/

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