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April 16, 2014 / 16 Nisan, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Australia’

Australia’s New Deputy PM an Advocate for Palestinians

Tuesday, July 2nd, 2013

Australia, one of Israel’s staunchest supporters, now has a deputy prime minister who is a founding member of the Parliamentary Friends of Palestine group, a sign of shifting political sands that may change the country’s attitudes towards the Jewish state.

Anthony Albanese, a longstanding member of the left faction of the Labor Party, was sworn in by Australia’s Governor-General Quentin Bryce Monday as part of Kevin Rudd’s new cabinet. Albanese describes himself as “a strong advocate of justice for Palestinians” but also has been at the forefront of the fight against those promoting a boycott of Israeli goods, blasting the campaign as “clumsy and counterproductive.”

Rudd was parachuted into power last week for his second stint as prime minister after Julia Gillard called a leadership ballot amid plunging polls and rising support for Rudd. He served as prime minister from 2007 to 2010 and said the day after he was re-elected that he doubted he would stick to the federal election date selected by Gillard of September 14, which is Yom Kippur, because of the “massive inconvenience” to Australia’s 110,000-plus Jews.

Rudd’s re-election as party leader sparked a bounce in the polls, but Labor still trails the conservative Liberal Party led by Tony Abbott. The election must be held by November 30.

Michael Danby, a pro-Israel Jewish legislator inside the Labor government, said although Albanese “doesn’t have my views on the Middle East,” he does support a two-state solution.

Pillar of Melbourne Jewish Community Dies

Monday, June 10th, 2013

A Vilna Ghetto survivor and partisan fighter whose restaurant in Melbourne became a meeting place for the postwar survivor community died on Saturday at the age of 89.

Avram Zeleznikow was the only member of his family to survive the Holocaust and waded through more than 30 miles of sewers to escape the ghetto in 1943 and join the partisans.

After the war, he and his wife-to-be, Masha, met in a Parisian cafe named Scheherazade, and soon after immigrating to Australia they opened their own Cafe Scheherazade, which became an iconic institution in Jewish Melbourne.

His son John said his parents served meals even to those survivors who could not afford to pay.

”He did not want to make a profit; he wanted to help people,” John Zeleznikow told The Age newspaper. ”They would talk, they would eat and they would argue. He provided sustenance for the body and sustenance for the soul.”

A Bundist, Avram Zeleznikow taught Yiddish at Sunday school, was president of the Australian Jewish Welfare and Relief Society, on the executive of the Victorian Jewish Board of Deputies, chairman of the Jewish Community Council of Victoria and a representative of the Jewish community on the Ethnic Communities Council.

He was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia in 2003 “for service to the Jewish community of Victoria.”

Jewish Doctor Acquitted but Hasn’t Left UAE

Thursday, April 4th, 2013

South African newspapers have been reporting for some days that Prof. Cyril Karabus, 77, whose involuntary detention by the people who run the United Arab Emirates has been going on now for seven months in defiance of basic principles of due process, has been clearedacquittedfound not guiltyfreed to go home and so on. The spokesperson for South Africa’s Department of International Relations and Co-operation broadcast a tweet a week ago exulting (after the earlier intervention of the department’s minister) that “He is free!”

However, South Africa’s Eyewitness News website reports that:

CAPE TOWN – Prosecutors in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have told Professor Cyril Karabus’ legal team they intend appealing the decision to find him not guilty of manslaughter. Last week, an Abu Dhabi court found the elderly professor not guilty of manslaughter and forgery. A medical committee cleared the paediatric oncologist of all blame for the death of a young cancer patient he treated there more than a decade ago. The latest development means Karabus will remain in the UAE indefinitely

We have not yet seen any reports originating in the UAE that confirm this, but we will keep looking. And if there is anyone out there still thinking the man’s own government is willing to do what ought to be done, think again:

“Professor Cyril Karabus has no choice but to submit to the UAE’s legal process, the dept of international relations said on Thursday, after it emerged that he will not be allowed to come back to South Africa yet.” [SAPA]

We have posted numerous times here about the Kafkaesque ordeal that this distinguished medico has suffered at the hands of the authorities in the UAE. For a quick overview, we suggest these: “21-Mar-13: Is Prof Karabus finally being released and going home?“; and “29-Jan-13: UAE “Justice” officials fiddle: The scandalous treatment of Prof. Karabus goes on and on“.

May we suggest again that anyone planning to travel to or through Dubai should carefully review what we posted here yesterday? (See “27-Mar-13: Final call for Australian travelers to London with Qantas“). And for the record, the advice is not meant only for Australians.

This outrageous affair is barely known outside South Africa. It’s time to change that.

Visit This Ongoing War.

Israel May Be in Hot Water over Prisoner X’s Aussie Passport

Wednesday, March 6th, 2013

Australia has confirmed that “Prisoner X,” since identified as Ben Zygier, worked for the Israeli government, and it warned Israel it faces a strong protest if it is proven his home country passport was misused.

Zygier, alias Ben Alon and Ben Allen, hanged himself in an Israeli jail two years ago after having been arrested for an unknown charge, but his identity was not revealed until last month.

It is assumed he worked for the Mossad and at some point acted against Israel’s interest, possibly through a treasonous act.

Foreign Affairs Minister Bob Carr told reporters in Australia that a Dept. of Foreign Affairs (DFAT) report has raised serious problems on how the case was handled.

He also said there are still many unanswered questions, one of the most serious being the issue of passports.

“Certainly if Australian passports were misused here, that’s something we are forced to take very seriously,” Senator Carr said. “No country can allow the integrity of its passport system to be compromised.

If it is confirmed that Israel misused his passport, “We’ll be registering the strongest protest,” Carr added.

He dismissed reports that Zygier was involved in the assassination of a senior Hamas official in Dubai in January 2010, when some of the killers used Australian passports.

The incident prompted the expulsion of an Israeli diplomat from Australia, one of the most pro-Israel countries in the world.

Prisoner X Met With Lawyer Before Suicide

Thursday, February 14th, 2013

More details are slowly coming to light in the case of Ben Zygier, also known as Prisoner X.

A day before he committed suicide, Zygier met with outside defense attorney Avigdor Feldman, besides his meetings with his regular attorneys Roi Belcher, Moshe Mazor and Boaz Ben-Tzur. Zygier had been considering his legal options, including the possibility of a plea bargain. What the charges were is still unknown, but Feldman said the charges were very serious.

On Thursday, a Kuwaiti newspaper, Al-Jarida, claimed that Zygier was one of the members of the Mossad team which assassinated Hamas terrorist Mahmoud al-Mabhouh. But after the assassination, for some reason, Zygier contacted the Dubai authorities and gave them detailed information on the assassination. According to the paper, Zygier was then captured by Israel after he went into hiding.

What has also come to light is that Israel is not running “black prisons” as some people claimed, but rather that Zygier was kept out of contact with other prisoners and his identity was secret to those without high enough clearance for security reasons, though all the while Zygier was allowed to meet with his lawyers who were defending him against the charges being brought against him by the state of Israel.

Questions arose as to how Zygier managed to kill himself in a maximum security cell with 24 hour camera surveillance. It turns out that the cell’s bathroom is not monitored, and that is where he hung himself.

Top 10 Reasons Prisoner X Was in Black Prison

Wednesday, February 13th, 2013

As you must have heard, Prisoner X, was kept in a secret Israeli government jail, the one previously used to hold Yigal Amir, and it’s forbidden by the censor to talk about him or his incarceration.

Here at the Muqata, we’ve uncovered the real reasons why Prisoner X was arrested.

Here they are (a joint Joe-Jameel effort):

10. He tried baking dairy Borekas in the wrong shape

9. He was clandestinely helping fund Women of the Wall

8. Arrested for protesting against the Disengagement

7. Had proof of who really killed Rabin

6. Had a Talansky envelope with Olmert’s fingerprints on it

5. Had proof Aryeh Deri really was innocent

4. Censored

3. Had dirt on why the Pope really quit

2. Had a copy of Obama’s real birth certificate And reason number 1 is…

1. Sara Netanyahu told Bibi to put him in jail

Foreign Media: Ex-Mossad Agent Committed Suicide in Israeli Prison

Tuesday, February 12th, 2013

“Prisoner X,” who hanged himself in an Israeli jail in 2010, was an Australian citizen who worked for the Mossad but apparently committed a heinous crime, perhaps treason, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) reported Tuesday.

The report sent the Netanyahu government scrambling to convene an urgent meeting of Israeli editors to keep the allegations from appearing in Israeli media, Haaretz reported.

ABC named “Prisoner X” as Ben Zygier, who went by the alias of Ben Alon or Ben Allen after he moved to Israel. Zygier, or Alon or Allen, was married to an Israeli woman and had two children. He was mysteriously jailed in a super-high security wing approximately 10 years after moving to Israel.

His identity never was revealed even to prison guards, and the prisoner committed suicide at the age of 34 despite state-of-the-art surveillance systems that are installed to prevent prisoners from taking their own lives. Zygier was in the Ayalon prison wing that held Yigal Amir, who assassinated Prime Minister Yitzchak Rabin.

Israel never admitted to the existence of Prisoner X even after the suicide was reported in 2010. At the time, media speculated the prisoner was a most senior enemy agent, with some suggesting that he was a senior Iranian Revolutionary Guards general.

After ABC’s report Tuesday, Haaretz told its readers that the Office of the Prime Minister called an emergency meeting of local editors “to ask its members to co-operate with the government and withhold publication of information pertaining to an incident that is very embarrassing to a certain government agency.”

ABC said it was able to identify Prisoner X through circumstantial evidence that was provided after the suicide victim’s body was sent to Melbourne a week after his death. Before then, Australia did not of his incarceration.

Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr responded to the ABC’s exposé, “Those allegations certainly do trouble me.

“It’s never been raised with me…. The difficulty is I’m advised we’ve had no contact with his family [and] there’s been no request for consular assistance during the period it’s alleged he was in prison.

“Even if Prisoner X has now been identified, his crime, however, remains a mystery although it has been widely speculated that it would have involved treachery to warrant such extreme measures.”

If the allegations are true, Israel might be subject to serious questions about due process of law.  Human Rights Watch researcher Bill van Esveld told the newspaper that there are serious issues involved concerning fundamental prisoners’ rights.

“It’s called a disappearance, and a disappearance is not only a violation of that person’s due process rights – that’s a crime,” he said. “Under international law, the people responsible for that kind of treatment actually need to be criminally prosecuted themselves.”


Mayan Calendar Expires, No Apocalypse So Far, See You in 2240

Friday, December 21st, 2012

We’ve reached the end of the 5,125 year Mayan calendar, December 21, 2012, and much like the debate that was reportedly being held on Christopher Columbus’s fourth ship (the one that fell over the edge), we today are engaged in a debate—a short lived one by definition—over whether or not the end of the Mayan calendar marks the end of the world.

I wonder if they’ll have similar debates as the year 2240 approaches. That would also be the year 6,000 on the Jewish calendar. Hopefully, more Jews than ancient Mayans will have survived by then. I looked up the year 6000 on my Kaluach calendar, which continues generating calendars past the year 6000 without a problem.

By the way, Rosh Hashana 6000 falls on Monday night, October 1, 2239. That means a really late Sukkot. Hope it won’t rain on your sukka.

But, seriously, don’t you think the Internet (assuming print will no longer be an option – you might just install a chip in your brain and browse stuff by squinting and blinking) will be full of messianic predictions? Heck, it’s 5773 and we’re doing the messianic on occasion – imagine how fervent we’ll be when the big 6 comes around?

Of course, our tradition says that Moshiach can arrive at any time in the sixth millenium, but only if we’re ready for him. Let’s hope we won’t have to retool our doctrine come Monday night October 1, 2239.

According to a new poll cited by Reuters, almost 15 percent of us worldwide believe the world will end during our lifetime, and 10 percent think the Mayan calendar could signify it will happen in 2012. That’s December 21, 2012, to be precise.

The Australian Herald Sun, where they receive the new day ahead of us, has reported this morning: “The 13th b’ak’tun has ended. The Mayan calendar has expired. We’re still here. So is New Zealand – and they’re two hours ahead of us.”

The HS continues: “There are no reports of Planet Nibiru looming suddenly above our atmosphere. No 100 ft tall apparitions of Mayan gods have started eating populations here or anywhere else so far covered by the 14th b’ak’tun date-line.”

Nevertheless, according to the Australian NT News, “hippies from all over Australia have gathered at Uluru (also known as Ayers Rock, a large sandstone rock formation in the southern part of the Northern Territory, central Australia) to see the world end.”

“Hippies?” Seriously?

Nomadic healer John, 53 – who says he hasn’t had a surname “for years” – had a message for Territorians worried about the end of the world: “Have no fear.”

“It will be the Ending of Time and the Beginning of Time,” he said.

“There will be a shift in the world but it happens every 26,500 years and NASA will tell you that.”

John’s doomsday resolution, according to NT News, is: ” I will just open my heart and be honest and love everyone. That’s when the wars will stop.”

Hey, you stick with what works.

According to experts on spiritualism cited by the AP, “a galactic bridge has been established – spirals of light are entering your head.” As we speak.

In Mexico, which by rights be at the center of the action, some are waiting for midnight, Mexico time, (you figure it out) and the start of the new b’ak’tun over the ruins of the Mayan civilization.

Others predict the end will come at exactly 11:11 PM – wherever you may be at the time (which makes absolutely no sense with a sphere-shaped planet, but appears logically sound on a flat Earth).

December 21 is the Winter Solstice, when the sun goes as far south as it ever does. From this point on, the days will get longer and the nights shorter. That news you can take to the bank. As to the apocalypse – when it happens, if it does, at 11:11 at night in the New World, we here, in Netanya, Israel, will be well into Shabbat morning, some of us probably already engaged in Shachrit davening.

Keep us posted. Come back to this page for an update Saturday night – if you still have Internet service.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/yoris-news-clips/mayan-calendar-expires-no-apocalypse-so-far-see-you-in-2240/2012/12/21/

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