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August 21, 2014 / 25 Av, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘Anti Israel’

Coalition Chair’s Letter of Praise for 100 Shofars Protest in NYC

Tuesday, April 29th, 2014

Protesters who plan to demonstrate today at the world’s largest shofar-blowing event in history in New York City have drawn praise from the Israeli government coalition chairman, who expressed his admiration for their “courage.”

Israeli government coalition chairman MK Yariv Levin  is “deeply moved” by demonstrators who are to gather to protest participation in the Israel Day Parade of groups promoting the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel.

In a letter sent to Richard Allen, founder of JCCWatch – organizer of the rally being held in New York – Levin praised the rally, set for Tuesday April 29 at  5 pm, “courageous stance of so many friends of Israel involved in the parade, calling to delegitimize those who delegitimize Israel.

“It is not logical or reasonable for Israel supporters to condone or overlook or indirectly cooperate with BDS groups which represent the antithesis of support for Israel. Refusing to recognize the State of Israel’s sovereign right to develop and maintain an independent legal position on any issue of national importance is not legitimate.”

The UJA-Federation and Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) which sponsors the annual Israel Day Parade, agreed this year to permit a number of anti-Israel groups to march this year in the parade, setting off a tsunami of protest over their participation. Among those  are:

  • Partners for Progressive Israel: which encourages the public to boycott Ahava Cosmetics, SodaStream and wine from nine Israeli vineyards.
  • The New Israel Fund: which finances NGOs (non-governmental organizations) that promote BDS activities against Israel. NIF funds Machsom Watch, the Coalition of Women for Peace, Women Against violence, Social TV and Mossawa, all of which signed a letter to the Norwegian government pension fund, urging it to divest from Israel.
  • B’Tselem: A major recipient of funds from NIF, the group has produced the anti-israel video shown at Israel Apartheid Week events held at various universities around the world. The organization’s board chairman, Oren Yiftachel, has publicly called for “effective sanctions” against Israel.

The rally, promoted as the “largest shofar blowing event in Jewish history,” is set to take place this afternoon (April 29) at 5:00 p.m. Eastern time (New York City) in front of the UJA-Federation building at 130 East 59th Street, between Park and Lexington Avenues. Participants are urged to bring their shofars to the rally. Those who do not have a shofar but who wish to participate can receive one to use on site.

Scheduled speakers include Rabbi David Algaze from the World Committee for the Land of Israel / Havurat Yisrael; Richard Allen, JCCWatch; Dr. Paul Brody of the Jewish Political Education Foundation; Helen Freedman of Americans for a Safe Israel; Beth Gilinsky of National Conference on Jewish Affairs; Mort Klein, head of Zionist Organization of America; Robert Muchnick of Manhigut Yehudit, and Lauri Regan of Endowment for Middle East Truth.

Northeastern U. Reinstates Students for Justice in Palestine Group

Thursday, April 24th, 2014

Northeastern University has provisionally reinstated the Students for Justice in Palestine chapter on campus.

The SJP chapter will remain on probation through January 2015, according to a notification letter from Dr. Laura A. Wankel, the university’s vice president for student affairs.

Students for Justice in Palestine was suspended from campus on March 7 for at least a year, and its current executive board members were barred from serving on future boards in the organization, after the group distributed mock eviction notices in student residences to protest Israeli policies against the Palestinians.

Wankel’s letter said that she found the original decision to suspend the chapter “appropriate.”

Conditions for the chapter’s provisional reinstatement include: electing a new executive board, creating new organizational and leadership development plans, and developing a proposed program plan for the fall semester.

“Of course, we disagree with the administration’s statement that the earlier decision to suspend SJP was appropriate and we believe this is largely a face-saving statement,” SJP leader Tori Porell said in a statement emailed Wednesday. “SJP is happy to work cooperatively with Associate Dean Bob Jose, one of the conditions the university is imposing – and, frankly, we were insisting upon – to plan our upcoming programs addressing important social justice issues.”

Cyber Attack on Israel Fails to Cripple Websites

Monday, April 7th, 2014

A coordinated cyber-attack on Israeli websites led by the international hacking group Anonymous has so far been relatively ineffective.

It announced that Monday would be “Operation Israel,” or “OpIsrael,” a day of targeting Israeli websites in retaliation for Israel’s “assault on the people of Gaza.”

“On April 7, 2014, we call upon our brothers and sisters to hack, deface, hijack, database leak, admin takeover, and DNS terminate the Israeli Cyberspace by any means necessary,” Anonymous said in a message posted on YouTube. “We will not stop until the police state becomes a free state and Palestine is free.”

The websites of the Israel postal service and the Education Ministry came down briefly, and the hackers also published on line a list of phone numbers, emails and passwords of senior Israeli officials.

Anonymous posted as message that Israel must “cease and desist any further military action and illegal settlements or the consequences will become worse with each passing hour.”

The attack comes exactly one year after an identical attack launched against Israel by Anonymous. Last year’s attack took down dozens of Israeli websites and saw published online a list of hundreds of Israeli email addresses and credit card numbers.

Research Exposes State Dept. Lie that PA Textbooks Do not Incite

Tuesday, April 1st, 2014

A study that translated 150 new Palestinian Authority textbooks used by a U.N. educational body exposes the lies in a former U.S. State Dept. funded study that the PA school system is not a source of incitement against Israel.

The Near East Policy Research Center study reveals that the textbooks say Jews have no rights to Israel, including to Jewish holy sites, and are not considered legitimate residents of the country. The name “Israel” appears less than a handful of times on the textbooks’ maps and is usually replaced with Palestine, and areas inside pre-1967 Israel are described exclusively as Palestinian.

The Near East Policy Research Center sent a letter to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, which runs 250 schools in Gaza and 100 in the West Bank, asking it to correct the deficiencies in the textbooks.

The findings are a confirmation of previous reports, including those by Palestinian Media Watch, that despite Obama administration claims that the Palestinian Authority has curbed incitement, its school system increasingly spews out hate and teaches children that Israel should not exist.

Barely one year ago, a different study concluded that anti-Israel incitement was far less than reported by critics.

And guess who funded the in-depth study.

None other than the anti-Israeli zombies running around the U.S. State Dept., which has spent billions of dollars the past 40 years to create a fiction that the “Occupation” is the cause and source of anti-Israel incitement.

A State Dept. official, speaking anonymously because of the sensitivity” of the issue but described by JTA as “an official who works closely with mainstream Jewish organizations,” proudly stated last year  that the conclusion “obviously cuts down one of the pegs and a linchpin in the argument that the Israel government makes, that the Palestinian Authority is teaching hatred to their kids.”

The study was called “Victims of our own Narratives?” and praised both Israel and the Palestinian Authority for publishing textbooks virtually free of “dehumanizing and demonizing characterizations of the other.”

The State Dept. shelled out your money for the survey by a group called the Council of Religious Institutions in the Holy Land, a multifaith body that aims “to prevent religion from being used as a source of conflict, and to promote mutual respect,” according to its website. It claims to be comprised of the Israeli Chief Rabbinate, the Palestinian Islamic Waqf, and the heads of Christian churches in Israel and the West Bank.

However, a closer look at the group discloses who really is running it – the dean of a church in the anti-Israeli Church of Norway and an Arab whom the website says “grew up in the holy – yet divided – city of Jerusalem.”

That explains the survey’s conclusions, far from the truth.

One of the Israeli members of the study, Arnon Groiss, said he has reservations about the methodology and could not attach his name to the final report, which he said he has not seen, JTA reported last year..

The State Dept.-funded study was a sleight of hand to produce misleading conclusions. The research compared Israeli and Palestinian Authority textbooks describing each other in a positive or critical light.

Yale University psychiatry professor Bruce Wexler, who led the survey team, made “comparisons between promotion of education for peace on the one side and education that calls for the annihilation of the other side,” said Yossi Kuperwasser, the director of Israel’s Ministry of Strategic Affairs. “It’s like comparing apples and giraffes.”

A statement from the Ministry of Strategic Affairs picks out passages in Palestinian textbooks it says the study ignores; many of them implicitly negate Israel by referring or depicting the entire territory as “Palestine.”

Lesser of Two Evils May Replace Falk on Anti-Israel UN Council

Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

The United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) will be deciding at its annual spring session in Geneva this month on a replacement for Richard Falk, the body’s special rapporteur on Palestinian human rights who has a history of anti-Israel bias.

U.N. watchdog groups, the United States, and Israel are closely monitoring the selection process.

The applicant list has recently been reduced by the vetting committee from 10 to three, with the candidates perceived as being the most biased against Israel now out of the running, according to UN Watch. The council president, currently Baudelaire Ndong Ella of the Gabonese Republic, will select one of the candidates to be put for a vote in front of the entire council later this month.

Hillel Neuer, executive director of Geneva-based UN Watch, told JNS.org that usually, the president follows the vetting committee’s recommendation and picks the leading candidate, although he has no obligation to do so. The president may even choose a candidate already eliminated in the vetting process.

Appointed by the council to a six-year non-renewable term in 2008, Falk, a professor emeritus of international law at Princeton University who endorsed boycotts against the Jewish state, has been a perennial thorn in the side of Israel supporters, current U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice, and U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. Before becoming the special rapporteur, Falk was a member of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Inquiry Commission for the Palestinian territories.

The three remaining candidates for the job include Christina Cerna, adjunct professor at Georgetown Law School; John Cerone, professor at Boston’s New England Law School; and Christine Chinkin, professor of international law at the London School of Economics and Political Science.

Of the three, both UN Watch and the Israel-based NGO Monitor regard Chinkin’s record as the most biased against Israel.

“Chinkin was in our ‘rogues’ gallery,” said Neuer, referring to a list his organization compiled to expose anti-Israel sentiments among the original group of candidates. “She co-wrote the Goldstone Report, so she has a record of being enormously biased, someone who’s so biased that she doesn’t even know when she has disqualified herself for a fact finding mission.”

Neuer was referring to Chinkin’s participation in the U.N. Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict in 2009, also known as the Goldstone Report for its chairman, South African jurist Richard Goldstone. She also signed a January 2009 letter in the British Sunday Times newspaper that condemned Israel for war crimes and declared it to be the aggressor in its conflict with the Palestinians.

“It was ridiculous that she continued to serve on the Goldstone commission [without recusing herself],” argued Neuer in referencing the letter.

“Goldstone had the courage and the moral backbone to renounce his own report and Chinkin was one of the main people who denounced Goldstone for that process,” added Gerald Steinberg, founder and president of NGO Monitor and a political science professor at Tel Aviv’s Bar Ilan University. “Goldstone acknowledged that they didn’t have the information, the evidence they presented was not convincing regarding Israel and Chinkin denounced him for that.”

The top two candidates currently do not rank on UN Watch’s “rogues list” nor do they have dossiers at NGO Monitor. But David Michaels, B’nai B’rith International’s director of intercommunal affairs, argued that on a certain level, it didn’t matter who occupies Falk’s position.

“The post itself, by its nature, is explicitly discriminatory against Israel. It’s meant to focus only on alleged violations of Palestinian rights with no consideration at all of violation of Israeli rights or of Palestinian misdeeds,” explained Michaels. “Whereas all other 192 member states of the U.N., including Iran, North Korea, Syria, China [and] Russia are all addressed under one item… Israel has its own permanent agenda item.”

Michaels said that there are NGOs and Human Rights Council members worried about the credibility that is lost within the organization when it appears as systemically against Israel as it currently does.

“It’s an offense against the only democracy in the Middle East, the only Jewish state, but also it just shows in a very stark way that the [U.N.] bodies neglect the most severe and heinous areas of human rights violations in the world,” he said.

At his position, Falk has made public statements against Israel and the United States, positions that Steinberg feels borders on anti-Semitism.

“I’ve been in meetings with him and he uses the ‘I’m Jewish, therefore I can’t be accused of being anti-Israel or anti-Semitic’” defense, said Steinberg, adding, “He uses that defense a lot and my challenge to him was, ‘In what other way are you Jewish other than in this hostility towards Israel and your Jewish connections?’”

Without taking a position on who should succeed Falk, the U.S. State Department seemed to welcome the end of the special rapporteur’s tenure.

“As we have stated before, we oppose his deeply flawed and one-sided mandate, as well as Agenda Item 7 under which it was created, the only HRC agenda item to focus on one specific country,” a State Department official told JNS.org. “Falk has repeatedly made biased and deeply offensive comments, including his most recent outrageous comments [accusing Israel of genocide] in an interview with Russia Today. His reports and rhetoric have done nothing to advance a peaceful settlement to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”

The UNHRC regular session in Geneva is expected to handle most of the Israel-related issues on its agenda on March 21. Despite advocacy from organizations like B’nai B’rith, UN Watch, and NGO Monitor, among others, few expect the UNHRC and its anti-Israel majority to take the Palestinian issue off its permanent agenda anytime soon.

Dmitriy Shapiro wrote this article for JNS.org.

Norwegian Cruise Lines Drops Tunisia over Anti-Israeli Bias

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

Norwegian Cruise Lines dropped Tunisia from its itineraries after the country refused to allow Israeli citizens to disembark in the Port of Tunis.

About 20 Israelis were quietly told before disembarking from the Norwegian Jade over the weekend that they were not welcome per the Tunisian government.

The cruise line’s decision to drop Tunisia was first reported by Cruise Critic, an online cruise information site.

“We want to send a strong message to Tunisia and ports around the world that we will not tolerate such random acts of discrimination against our guests,” Kevin Sheehan, Norwegian Cruise Line’s CEO, said in a statement Tuesday.

The Norwegian Jade had been stopping in Tunisia every three weeks during the winter, according to Cruise Critic.

Arab Airline Denies Claims of Discrimination against Israelis

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

An airline owned by the United Arab Emirates said it “emphatically refutes” claims that it excludes Israel from its official travel-route map and refuses to transport Israelis.

In a statement, Etihad Airways wrote that it carried more than 1,000 passengers traveling with Israeli passports last year, refuting assertions made in the New York Post newspaper.

“In fact, we do not discriminate in any way and welcome passengers of all faiths and religions carrying valid documentation,” the statement said.

Etihad said its maps “do not identify countries by name” and that its website lists Israel “as one of more than 150 country options for passenger documentation when booking flights.”

According to the Post, Etihad is the sole airline that provides service between Abu Dhabi and U.S. cities, including New York, Chicago and Washington.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/arab-airline-denies-claims-of-discrimination-against-israelis/2014/03/11/

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