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October 22, 2016 / 20 Tishri, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘BDS’

Fighting Anti-Israel NGOs And BDS Activists: An Interview with Israeli Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked

Thursday, October 6th, 2016

In just a few years, Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked has shot to political stardom in Israel. A computer engineer turned politician, Shaked, 40, has been a member of Knesset for the Jewish Home party since 2013 and was appointed justice minister by Prime Minister Netanyahu in 2015.

Shaked, a forceful champion of Israel’s rights both at home and abroad, is an outspoken supporter of Jewish settlements and was the driving force behind Israel’s 2016 NGO transparency law.


The Jewish Press: Can you describe your background and what influenced your political views and your decision to join the Jewish Home party?

Shaked: I was right wing since I was a child, after having watched a debate between Yitzhak Shamir and Shimon Peres. I served in the army in the Golani Brigade and that also influenced my ideology, since most of the soldiers were from the Religious Zionist movement.

For a few years I was a Likud member, working with Benjamin Netanyahu after the Gaza Disengagement. I decided to leave the Likud and join the Jewish Home party because I thought that it’s very important to have a party that has secular and Orthodox working together on the basis of Religious Zionist values.

How concerned are you that the UN will try to impose a unilateral solution on Israel?

The UN is a very political and biased organization and I don’t believe in truth coming from it. It’s just a body of political interests. The fact that the UN has failed to deal with Syria while hundreds of thousands of women and children are being slaughtered there proves that it does nothing. The UN tries to hit Israel whenever it can in a very biased approach without even mentioning the ongoing incitement by the Palestinian Authority. Just the other day Mahmoud Abbas paid a condolence call to families of terrorists who tried to kill Jews.

The UN also ignores the fact that there are terror attacks conducted in the U.S. for the same reason – radical Islam against the West. In dealing with the UN, Israel should stick to its own beliefs.

Establishing a Palestinian state right now is a very dangerous thing. It’s also not realistic at all. The majority of the people in Israel, including those from the left and center, don’t think we have a partner right now. So Ban Ki-moon can talk, but it’s just wishful thinking. In reality we will do what we think is good for us.

How would you advise America to combat the scourge of Islamist terrorism that both America and Israel face?

You just need to face reality. In Europe they are already facing reality and identifying it as radical Islamic terrorism. We are not at war with Islam. In Israel, 20 percent of the population is Muslim. And we have a very good relationship with them. But we need to distinguish between Islam and radical Islamic terror, which threatens the Western world.

This is actually a war between two civilizations; between the Western world and radical Islamic terror. It’s in the U.S., in Europe, in Israel; it’s all over the Middle East. And radical Islam is mainly aimed at hurting other Muslims. There are hundreds of thousands of Muslims all over the Middle East who have been slaughtered because of this extreme ideology. We need to face this reality.

What is your position on Israel’s claim to Judea and Samaria?

After the Oslo Accords, Judea and Samaria were assigned to areas A, B, and C. Areas A and B are under the Palestinian Authority and area C is under Israeli authority. If you ask me what will be in the end, how will we finish the conflict, I believe we should annex area C. There are 425,000 Jews and 90,000 Arabs who are living there. The Arabs should be full citizens of Israel and get all the according rights. Areas A and B should be a strong autonomy or in conjunction with Jordan.

Under international law, those territories are not occupied territories; they are territories under dispute. There is a lot of land in area C that belongs to the state and we should expand building on those lands. There’s nothing we need to apologize for. It’s legally state land and we should continue to build there.

You initiated and then advanced Israel’s NGO bill through the Knesset. What do you hope it will achieve in terms of deterring agitators from working within Israel?

It’s a transparency bill. In Israel, there are a few NGOs that get the majority of their money from abroad from different countries. Those countries actually try to interfere in a diplomatic way in Israeli policy and are trying to do it through NGOs.

We are not forbidding that, but we want the public to be aware of it. That’s why we passed a transparency bill that any NGO that gets more than 50 percent of its budget from a foreign country should declare it when approaching a Knesset member and in their official publications.

What more can be done about many of these NGOs who are aligned with the BDS movement and their allies, such as the Black Lives Matter delegation that recently visited Israel and accused it of “genocide”?

There are definitely NGOs in Israel that cooperate with BDS groups, mainly in the United States. They actually lay the groundwork for the lies and they distort the facts the BDS groups end up using.

We need to determine what falls under freedom of speech, but we are fighting against the threat of delegitimization the NGOs are pursuing. This is something we are dealing with on a regular basis because it’s based on lies and it hurts Israel.

Unfortunately, many agitators against Israel in these various groups are Jewish. What would you say to them as Jews?

They are confused. I talked about it in the lecture that I gave to the JNF, in which I said there are extreme liberal Jews who just swallow the lies and the propaganda the BDS movement is selling. They are confusing liberal and human rights values with the new anti-Semitism. BDS is perpetrating a fraud and unfortunately there are people who are buying into it.

Sara Lehmann

Lessons from 5776, Optimism for 5777

Sunday, October 2nd, 2016

As we take our leave from 5776, I would sum it up as the year that Israel discovered the correct paradigm for dealing with her adversaries.

In previous years, many believed Israel’s military superiority allowed and even obliged her to take “risks for peace.” Others believed that propping up the economies of Israel’s neighbors until they were on par with her own, while giving up land, would bring peace.

But in 5776, Israel discovered that the secret for a relatively peaceful status quo comes not from creating economic parity, giving away land or taking risks, but rather by creating economic dependence, along with the application of Israel’s military superiority.

It should be made clear that a peaceful status quo is a separate discussion from what Israel’s long term vision for the region should be — whether that solution be Israel applying phased or full sovereignty over all of Israel’s territories, a confederation with Jordan, or some other ideas not yet tested or considered.

It’s been repeatedly noted that only one of the terror attacks by PA Arabs in this recent terror wave was executed by an individual with an Israeli work permit.

Israelis have learned that no matter how much their neighbors may hate them (and by the way, not all of Israel’s neighbors close and far hate Israel), or how much incitement they absorb from Palestinian Authority TV and the Islamic preachers, their families and villages depend on the money they make from Israelis, and all of them, save one, would not dare risk that.

Which is why the Palestinian Authority tried its best to force these Arab workers to stop working in the settlements, and why it failed. (PA Arabs make three times more working for Israelis than they do working in the Palestinian Authority.)

Incidentally, Israel would probably help the future stability of Judea and Samaria by announcing it will guarantee PA police salaries should the Palestinian Authority collapse under the weight of its own incompetence and corruption or Abbas’ retirement or death.

There’s very little that creates more loyalty than a paycheck paid on time.

Despite the roadblocks set up by Israel’s High Court, 5776 concluded with Jordan signing a $10 billion gas deal with Israel, which a Jordanian official said will save Jordan $600 million a year. It’s a deal that might very well tie Jordan’s economic stability to Israel for the next 15 years, along with the fresh water that Israel provides them.

Besides natural gas, Turkey, Greece, various Arab countries, some African states, India, Russia and China are looking to purchase or enter business partnerships with Israel, to acquire Israeli technology, military experience and equipment, fresh water solutions, solar energy, agricultural know-how or simply gain access to Israeli projects.

As these countries and others become more reliant on what Israel has to offer, there will be a gradual, visible change in their public attitudes, voting in international forums, and policies towards Israel, as Prime Minister Netanyahu pointed out in his speech last month before the UN General Assembly.

On the military side, this past year, the IDF finally resumed its function in actively preventing terrorism, rather than restricting itself to a reactive mode. IDF soldiers have been raiding the hornet nests in the Palestinian Authority every night, to confiscate illegal weapons and ammunition, uncover weapons factories and erode the terror networks of Hamas, the PLO, and the various Islamic Jihadi groups which expanded operations under former defense ministers Ehud Barak and Moshe Ya’alon. And, surprisingly, these IDF actions hardly provoke any international condemnation, save for criticism from Haaretz.

It was also the year Israel has actively taken on BDS, and began to beat it down, state after US state.

Obviously, all was not rosy this past year.

Thanks to the Iran deal, a revitalized Islamic Iran has been expanding its terror operations. But as Iran and their client Hezbollah try to establish terror bases on Israel’s Golan Heights’ border, Syrian Rebels are fighting those Iranian and Hezbollah terrorists on the Golan — the same rebels who are reportedly receiving much-needed medical aid from Israel.

There has been an upswing in Israeli Arabs participating in terror attacks and joining ISIS due to Islamic radicalization, incitement and propaganda, but Israel is already learning how to deal with them.

Hamas is still destroying Gaza as it continues to prepare for another round of fighting with Israel.

In the spring of 5777, Israel will celebrate 50 years since the liberation of our ancient lands of Judea, Samaria and eastern Jerusalem from the illegal Jordanian occupation. Expect the usual NGOs (under new names and old) and Israel haters to foment their venomous propaganda, and also expect fewer and fewer people, everywhere in the world, to pay attention.

There’s concern over Obama’s anticipated November surprise at the UN.

And, of course, there will be the new challenges that either candidate for US president will present to Israel.

At the JewishPress.com we believe we have reason to be optimistic.

Israel has made significant positive changes this past year, with strategic, long term ideas being implemented, already with noticeable results. 5777 will bring challenges, even difficult ones, but we believe Israel is ready for them.

Shana Tova – Have a sweet new year.

Stephen Leavitt

NY Senator Chuck Schumer Slams BDS as ‘Modern Anti-Semitism’

Tuesday, September 27th, 2016

New York Senator Chuck Schumer slammed the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions movement this week as a “modern form of anti-Semitism.”

Schumer said in an address to the Israeli American Council’s 2016 National Israeli American Conference that ultimately, BDS organizers don’t “believe there should be a Jewish State in the Middle East, and are guilty of the same anti-Semitism. We need to make that argument loudly and strongly and go against the BBDS movement and call it for what it is,” he said,” an anti-Semitic and not just anti-Israel movement.”

The senator added that he applauds the governors of New York and California for passing anti-BDS legislation.

But although anti-Semitism is clearly rising on the campuses of American colleges and universities, Schumer noted that the problem is even worse in Europe.

“Unfortunately, anti-Semitism seems to be in far too many European homes,” he said, pointing to the re-election of Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the British Labour Party as one example.

“Europe has shown how anti-Israel and anti-Semitic the BDS movement really is. Far-right parties are experiencing a rebirth, and far-left parties … like the Labour Party under Corbyn, are increasingly anti-Israel.”

Corbyn has repeatedly turned a blind eye to the anti-Semitism of veteran members of the party, prompting the recent resignation of a prominent Jewish Labourite, Lord Parry Mitchell. Corbyn in the past also has expressed his “friendship” for the Hamas and Hezbollah terrorist organizations.

“Terrorism and violence against Jews is on the rise, from vandalizing synagogues to the horrible attack on a Jewish grocery in Paris,” Schumer pointed out.

“It is no wonder that last year France, home to the largest Jewish population in Europe, set a record for the migration of Jews to Israel,” he said.

Hana Levi Julian

Judea, Samaria, Golan Communities Bypassing BDS, Taking Products Directly to US Consumers

Tuesday, September 27th, 2016

This week, Yesha Council, the umbrella organization of municipal councils of Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria this week joined forces with the Israeli Ministry of Strategic Affairs to promote their products as well as products from the Golan Heights at the annual IAC National Conference in Washington. Representatives of the council and ministry handed out five thousands Medjoul dates from the Jordan Valley, two hundred bottles of wine, and hundreds of samples of Ahava cosmetics and other products to conference participants.

The imitative was part of a broader plan to educate and encourage Israel supporters worldwide to buy blue and white and support businesses most threatened by the BDS campaign. Three months ago, a similar program was held in Moscow, and many more such events are anticipated worldwide in the coming months.

Oded Revivi, Chief Foreign Envoy of Yesha Council said in statement: “Israeli industrial zones in Judea and Samaria are islands of peace and coexistence where Israelis and Palestinians work together for a better future. With no political solution on the horizon, it’s time to tell the world that Israelis and Palestinians can live and work together in peace without being pushed into an agreement that neither side wants. Boycotting Israeli companies in Judea and Samaria actually harms Palestinian workers far more than the Israeli economy and is therefore and act against peace.”

While in Washington, Revivi met with more than a dozen Senators, Congressmen and staffers on Capitol Hill from both the Republican and Democrat parties, where he stressed that Yesha Council would welcome continued dialogue and cooperation with both sides of the aisle.

Yesha Council reps having lunch with Sheldon Adelson. / Courtesy

Yesha Council reps having lunch with Sheldon Adelson. / Courtesy

The Yesha Council delegation met privately with casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, and requested his assistance with new initiatives to strengthen the connection between the Jewish people and their ancestral homeland. They reported that Adelson was extremely excited to hear about a new Amazon-like Boycott website that the Council is in the process of launching. He also agreed to come on a VIP tour of the thriving Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria.

Revivi told Adelson that “businesses in Judea and Samaria are on the frontline of the battle against BDS, [which is] currently targeting Ariel and Efrat but their ultimate goal is the destruction of the entire Jewish State. The Yesha Council is now going on the offensive launching a new Boycott website to promote Israeli goods directly to consumers.”


Does The Carnegie Endowment for Peace Support BDS?

Monday, September 26th, 2016

The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (CEIP) has significantly contributed to the progress of global peace and promotion of global citizenship.

Nonetheless, recently, CEIP Vice President for Middle Eastern Studies, Jordanian Marwan Muasher, has made confusing comments that puts his stance on peace itself in question, and further sheds a doubt on CEIP’s overall commitment to its mission, which is: “dedication to advancing cooperation between nations”.

On 31 August 2016, Mr. Muasher published an OpEd in the Jordanian daily, AlGhad, entitled “Lets Support the Civil Democratic State”. In this article, he exhibits passionate support for a list of candidates running for the Jordanian parliamentary elections that took place on 20th of September 2016. The block of candidates is named “Maan List”, or “Together List.” All of these ‘candidates’ openly are anti-peace, pro-BDS and avidly against the United States, West, with their focus being Israel and the Jewish state.

With that in mind, let’s take a close look at the Maan list. On their “official website,” in which they provide a clear and unapologetic description of political stances and positions. Combined, or even at plain face value its quite clear that Muasher’s has supported a group that upholds and publicizes positions that are in direct conflict with the very values that CEIP stands for. Here are examples of what “Maan List” supports:

“Despite the very complicated regional circumstances, we keep our eyes on the Palestine of Arabhood which is fighting the Zionist occupation and the spreading settlement cancer which has become a threat to our holy Jerusalem and our Islamic and Christian holy places as well as our Arab identity. This is in the name of Jordan’s historical responsibility towards the land and the human of the beloved Palestine, and we shall remain the strong backbone for our Palestine as well as its lung through which it breathes and gains power against the occupier. We shall remain standing behind the global anti-normalization with Israel movement (BDS), which has become an effective pressurizer against the occupier all over the world, and we demand anti-normalization all through our Jordan of dignity and pride and we tell the government there is another option as the gas production of Arab brothers is much bigger than that of the occupation”.

The Maan list does not stop there, read this: “We also utterly reject the racist project of the Judization of the state and we demand the government to work avidly with our brothers from the beloved Palestine to sustain the human on his soil and hold on tight to the right of return, self-determination and the independent state.”

“And last but not least, all the freedom for our hero prisoners in prisons of the occupation, and a healthy recovery to the wounded, and glory to the martyr”.

Now, let’s see what CEIP’s Vice President, Muasher says about the group that supports the stances above, in his article:

* “I have to admit that my sprits have pretty much gone up since I have attended, days ago, the launch ceremony of ‘Maan List’ which calls for a civil democratic state”.

* “For the first time, I heard public talk about civility and democracy that was very frank and clear about the goals which the list is trying to achieve”

* “It is the right, in fact the duty, of this civil and democratic movement to be heard. I have always believed that large numbers believe in this movement, but nonetheless remained silent or [too] incapacitated to organize itself within a framework that allows it to express itself”

* “What I hope for is that the boredom of these groups with the classic approaches that do not meet its needs, would not only push it towards going to the launch ceremonies of the lists that support such argument, but also would go on the day of elections to voting box and to vote for whom it believes is aligned with its dream of a civil and democratic state”.

* “This should not be an obstacle from going to vote, especially to ideological lists like “Maan” that does not depend on tribal foundations, but rather calls for ideas which we could never become an advanced society without.”

To make matters worse, the CEIP even provided a link from their site to the article in question.

This raises a variety of questions about the CEIP and the VP’s statements, for one, was Mr. Muasher speaking for himself, or because of his position, an extension of the CEIP?

Also, does the CEIP actually know what the Maan List stands for, and what it means to the countries in the region? How does comply with CEIP’s mission statement, and even further, its tax-deductible status?

In addition, was CEIP VP Muasher spreading innuendo and hate against Israel and Jews? Why is Mr. Muasher supporting a pro-BDS group? Does he support BDS himself? Does CEIP support the BDS movement?

At the same time, how does Mr. Muasher see supporting BDS as contributing to world peace and especially peace in our region? And in fact, why is CEIP’s VP playing a key role in helping Jordan’s king keep his people down while expanding his powers through radical groups such as Maan List, which Muasher supports?

CEIP is in a position where it must take a stance, clearly and utterly distancing itself from their VP’s statements. Especially that Mr. Muasher cannot claim he did not know of Maan List’s stances against peace and Israel, if he did not actually know; then why did he go the extra mile to support the list in one of Jordan’s most read dailies? Also, him being the head of

CEIP’s MidEast research; is it even possible he has failed to do the research before supporting anti-peace group, when all he had to do is check their website?

In closing, we believe that these statements were wrong and do not reflect the CEIP and its programming in any way. Even so, we do know that Mr. Muasher is a CEIP VP and as such, he is recognized around the world as a leader in the organization. As such, we believe that CEIP should clearly state that it does not support Muasher’s position.

Further, CEIP must not tolerate pro-BDS and anti-Semitic stances as they endanger Israel and thus the direct interest of Jordanians and Palestinians, and this is in turn directly compromises regional and global peace.

CEIP and other global political organizations must exclude, eliminate and besiege all supporters of hatred including those who promote BDS, which simply means: less jobs, less stability and more unrest as far as we Jordanians and Palestinians are concerned.

{Abed AlMaala is the Secretary of Commerce in the Jordanian Opposition Coalition; www.facebook.com/abed.almaala}

Abed AlMaala

International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network Urges Labour to Expel the Jews

Monday, September 26th, 2016

Leaflets were being passed out by a Jewish anti-Semitic group on Sunday near the entrance to a hall in which a Momentum anti-Semitism meeting was taking place on Sunday.

The group, called IJAN (International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network) was calling for the expulsion of the Jewish Labour Movement from the Labour Party in its leaflets.

The party has just re-elected Jeremy Corbyn has its leader, prompting at least one prominent Jewish member, Lord Parry Mitchell, to resign his membership as a result.

Corbyn has been cited for closing his eyes to numerous incidents of anti-Semitism by veteran Labour members, and has himself expressed his own “friendship” with the Hamas and Hezbollah terrorist organizations.

On its website, IJAN says in a statement that it “unequivocally backs the entire Movement For Black Lives political platform and stridently condemns the Zionist backlash against the Movement for Black Lives.

“The International Jewish anti-Zionist Network strongly embraces the entire Movement for Black Lives (M4BL) platform, and we affirm its support for the Palestinian struggle and efforts to Boycott, Divest, In the United States and internationally, racism has been central to how power works and money flows.

‘Both the Palestinian anti-racist struggle against Zionism and the Black anti-racist struggle against White supremacy are crucial to peoples’ efforts to build a just world. For that reason, the Black Power movement both past and present is one of our key reference points in all fights for justice.

Hana Levi Julian

‘BDS is the New Face of Terrorism’ Says Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked

Monday, September 19th, 2016

Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked told the Jewish National Fund in New York on Sunday that the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions movement is the new face of terror.

Shaked, a top official with Israel’s Bayit Yehudi party, addressed the JNF Conference in New York on Sunday, speaking on the issue of the BDS Movement and how its activities impact Israel in daily life. She condemned the movement, likening its activities to the tunneling of the Hamas terrorist organization in Gaza.

“The BDS movement is digging tunnels to undermine the foundations and values of Israel,” she said. “We have to stop these tunnels as well.”

The movement constitutes an existential threat at its core, she added. “Supporters of the BDS movement are attempting to destroy our very right to exist. They refuse to accept our most natural, basic and simple right: the existence of the State of Israel.”

Regardless of what mask terror wears, she said, one simple truth stands out: “You cannot defeat the enemy unless you call it what it is. That is why I am not afraid to do so. We are fighting Islamic extremism,” she said pointedly, underscoring a fact that has not once been uttered during the entire eight years of the entire reign of the the Obama administration.

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/bds-is-the-new-face-of-terrorism-says-justice-minister-ayelet-shaked/2016/09/19/

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