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October 27, 2016 / 25 Tishri, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Brazil’

Israel to Compete at World Baseball Qualifier in Brooklyn, NY

Monday, August 29th, 2016

Israel is to be represented next month at the international qualifier for next year’s World Baseball Classic in Brooklyn, New York, against Brazil, Britain and Pakistan.

A number of players from the Major League will represent the Jewish State, including former All-Star pitcher Jason Marquis, former Mets infielder Ike Davis, and Craig Breslow, a player for the Red Sox in their 2013 World Series title.

If Israel qualifies for the WBC, the roster will likely include the greatest collection of Jewish ballplayers on one team in the history of the game, ever.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Two Medals and Political Controversies: A Summary of Israel’s Rio Olympics

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2016

By Michael Bachner/TPS

As the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro come to a close, Israel can look back at what was one of its most successful Olympics ever. The country’s team was the biggest in its history with 47 athletes who competed in various sporting events, won two medals, displayed some strong performances and set many precedents throughout the Games. Nevertheless, some were disappointed by missed opportunities to win more medals, and several political incidents involving unsportsmanlike behavior by Arab athletes stole the show.

Israel’s biggest success in Brazil came in Judo, the country’s strongest sport which has now become the source of five of its total of nine medals in history. Israeli judokas Yarden Gerbi and Ori Sasson won a bronze medal each, becoming national heroes back home.

Gerbi competed in the women’s 63 kilogram division on day four of the Games and won her first two matches. She then lost a controversial match in the quarterfinals to a Brazilian opponent who many claimed received preferential treatment by the referee. But Gerbi recovered and won her two matches in the repechage to clinch Israel’s first medal in eight years.

Three days later, Ori Sasson doubled the celebration by reaching the podium in the men’s 100+ kilogram division. He first beat Egyptian opponent Islam El Shehaby, who famously refused to shake Sasson’s hand after the match and was condemned by the International Olympic Committee and sent home. Sasson won his way to the semifinal, where he lost to undefeated champion Teddy Riner of France before winning the bronze medal match.

The handshake snub was accompanied by several other anti-Israeli scandals in Rio. Before the opening ceremony, members of the Lebanese delegation blocked the Israeli team from boarding the same bus. A Saudi judoka withdrew from her match under the pretext of an injury, but the move was viewed in Israel as an attempt to avoid facing Israeli athlete Gili Cohen in the next round.

This was just the third time Israel won two medals in the same Olympics, after Barcelona in 1992 and Athens in 2004. There were, however, some athletes that narrowly missed out on more medals in Rio, which was viewed by some as a disappointment.

Windsurfer Maayan Davidovich was in a good position to finish in the top three spots in the women’s RS:X sailing event, but blundered during her final sail and could not recover, finishing ninth in the medal-race and seventh overall.

A strong performance by Judoka Sagi Muki in the men’s 73 kilogram competition was also not enough to secure a place on the podium. Muki competed with an injury, and nevertheless managed to win his way to the semifinals, before losing his two remaining bouts and tying for fifth place.

Triple Jumper Hanna Knyazyeva-Minenko came within six centimeters of winning a medal, scoring a 2016 personal best of 14.68 meters in the final and ranking fifth. Israel’s Rhythmic Gymnastics team also came close, but finished sixth in the final.

There were also athletes who were considered before the games to be favorites for medals, but who failed to even make the finals. These include Gymnast Alex Shatilov, Swimmer Yakov Toumarkin, Rhythmic Gymnast Neta Rivkin, and windsurfer and former Olympic medalist Shahar Tzuberi.

Israel’s athletes set some firsts during the Games. Laetitia Beck became the first Israeli golf player to compete in the Olympics as well as Shlomi Haimy in mountainbiking, Ilana Kratysh in wrestling, and Ron Darmon in the triathlon. Ron Atias became the first male to compete in Taekwondo, and Misha Zilberman scored Israel’s first ever Olympic win in badminton.

The closing ceremony of the Olympic Games was held on August 21 and attention will now shift to the Paralympic Games, scheduled to kick off in Rio in two weeks at the same facilities and under the same governing council as the Olympics. The Israeli delegation to these Games includes 30 athletes, both Jews and Arabs, and in a historic first, half of them are women. Israel traditionally has more success in these games and it remains to be seen if the Paralympic athletes will live up to the high expectations.

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

‘Movement for Black Lives’ Pushes BDS, Anti-Semitism in Platform

Thursday, August 4th, 2016

The umbrella organization known as the “Movement for Black Lives” under which more than 50 political groups are operating, has just released its political agenda — a deeply anti-Semitic, pro-BDS document.

The group clearly targets the State of Israel while proclaiming the global unity of “Black” and “Brown” people as it describes far-left planks.

“The US military accounts for over 50 percent of discretionary federal spending, a total of 598.5 Billion dollars spent annually, as compared to 70 billion spent on education, 66 billion spent on healthcare, $63.2 billion spent on housing and 29.1 billion spent on social security and unemployment,” the movement writes in a detailed presentation on its website, under the section called “A Cut in US Military Expenditures and A Reallocation of those Funds to Invest in Domestic Infrastructure and Community Wellbeing.”

This manifesto is part of a list of issues that are placed under the “INVEST-DIVEST” section of the group’s “Platform” on the pulldown menu of the website. It comes just before the section called, “DEMANDS.”

“Approximately 3 billion dollars in US aid is allocated to Israel, a state that practices systematic discrimination and has maintained a military occupation of Palestine for decades,” the section continues.

“Together with aid to Egypt — Israel’s most important regional ally — this figure represents nearly 75 percent of all US aid dollars. As these figures demonstrate, resources and funds needed for reparations and for building a just and equitable society domestically are instead used to wage war against a majority of the world’s communities.

“In 2006, AFRICOM was established by the US government to expand US military presence on the continent under the claim of protecting the region against “terror” and “radical Islam”. In reality, this effort was designed to expand western colonial control over the region, its people and their resources. AFRICOM is a major example of U.S. empire and is a direct threat to global Black liberation.

“The US justifies and advances the global war on terror via its alliance with Israel and is complicit in the genocide taking place against the Palestinian people. The US requires Israel to use 75 percent of all the military aid it receives to buy US-made arms.

“Consequently, every year billions of dollars are funneled from US taxpayers to hundreds of arms corporations, who then wage lobbying campaigns pushing for even more foreign military aid. “The results of this policy are twofold: it not only diverts much needed funding from domestic education and social programs, but it makes US citizens complicit in the abuses committed by the Israeli government. “Israel is an apartheid state with over 50 laws on the books that sanction discrimination against the Palestinian people. Palestinian homes and land are routinely bulldozed to make way for illegal Israeli settlements.

“Israeli soldiers also regularly arrest and detain Palestinians as young as 4 years old without due process. Everyday, Palestinians are forced to walk through military checkpoints along the US-funded apartheid wall.

“The interlinked systems of white supremacy, imperialism, capitalism and patriarchy shape the violence we face. As oppressed people living in the US, the belly of global empire, we are in a critical position to build the necessary connections for a global liberation movement.

“Until we are able to overturn US imperialism, capitalism and white supremacy, our brothers and sisters around the world will continue to live in chains.

“Our struggle is strengthened by our connections to the resistance of peoples around the world fighting for their liberation. The Black radical tradition has always been rooted in igniting connection across the global south under the recognition that our liberation is intrinsically tied to the liberation of Black and Brown people around the world.

Hana Levi Julian

Israeli-Trained Brazilian Forces to Secure Rio Olympics

Tuesday, July 26th, 2016

This year’s summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro will take place under watchful eyes of 10,000 Brazilian soldiers and police officers. All have been highly trained for the job — by Israelis.

According to a report on the Israel NonStop website, based on details broadcast by Israeli Channel 2 television news reporter Nir Dvori, said the International Security & Defense Systems (ISDS) Israel defense company took on the $2.5 billion project, assisted by the Israeli Ministry of Defense.

A report written by Charlotte Silver in May 2015 on the pro-Palestinian Authority Electronic Intifada blog contradicted news of the contract won by the firm.

“Brazil’s government has excluded an Israeli ‘security’ company from working at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro following a campaign by Palestine solidarity activists,” Silver wrote.

ISDS had indeed won the contract with the Brazilian government “to coordinate security” for the Games in October 2014, the blog conceded.

“But on 8 April a division dealing with large events at Brazil’s justice ministry denied that ISDS had been awarded any contract,” Silver wrote, extrapolating from a letter written by the ministry that said: “Any contract made by Rio 2016 won’t result in compromises by the Brazilian government.”

Silver cited a statement by CUT workers’ union executive director Julio Turra as further proof, celebrating it as a success for the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS) movement: “We are glad that the government distances itself from ISDS. It would be illegal and shameful to hire a company that develops its technologies in complicity with Israeli crimes and that accumulates complaints about its participation in Central American dictatorships.”

ISDS instead raised 35 Israeli security companies for the project, which have brought to the table new systems and intelligence methods that will be activated by the 10,000 Brazilian police and military personnel who are now responsible for Rio and the city.

Argus Corporation, Kaylor, Kela and others are all involved in helping to secure the 10,000 athletes who will compete from 26 nations in 1,000 competitions to determine who is the “best of the best” on the planet.

Along with the 10,000 security personnel making sure that everyone stays safe before, during and on the way out of the event, will be 26,000 journalists whose lives also will hang in the balance and who must be protected at the 50 different stadiums and facilities.

In less than two weeks, the Games begin.

Meanwhile, the security director of the Games has told media, “This is an international collaboration between government agencies from different countries.”
That’s probably true, and it’s an important point when considering the fact that a terror cell from the Da’esh (ISIS) terrorist organization has already been discovered in Brazil as well.

Hana Levi Julian

Brazil Arrests Terror Cell Linked to ISIS

Thursday, July 21st, 2016

Security personnel in Brazil have arrested 12 suspects in connection with their alleged pledge of allegiance to the Da’esh (ISIS) terrorist organization via social media.

The cell also reportedly discussed the use of weapons, guerrilla tactics and possible attacks during the upcoming Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, according to a report Thursday by ABC News.

Brazil’s Justice Minister Alexandre de Moraes told reporters in Brasilia, the nation’s capital, that one of the suspects is a minor.

“They were complete amateurs and ill-prepared” to actually pursue their goals, he added, noting that the suspects had said a few days prior “they should start practicing martial arts, for example.”

But even disorganized groups — for example, the suspects in this group were arrested in 10 different states, including Sao Paulo, and had not yet specified a target — needed to be taken seriously, Moraes said.

Brazil has raised security in the country to “a higher level” due to concerns over terrorism following the attack in the southern French city of Nice.

The Olympic Games begin August 5.

Hana Levi Julian

Chabad Creates Jewish Welcome Centers for Brazil Summer Olympics in Rio

Friday, June 24th, 2016

Chabad-Lubavitch emissaries have spent months working on preparations for the upcoming Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

The Chassidic Jewish group is just about ready to greet the tens of thousands of Jews who are expected to be among the hundreds of thousands of people flocking to Brazil for the competition.

There will be three separate Jewish welcome centers to greet some of the 40,000 Jews expected to arrive for the games. At least 10,000 of those spectators and competitors are believed to be Israeli.

The centers will be staffed by four rabbinical students from New York, according to Chabad.org, among a total of 12 rabbinical students in Rio for the games.

The students speak numerous languages — English, Hebrew, Spanish, French and Russian — to make it easier to communicate with all the Jewish visitors expected to stream into Rio.

Anyone looking for kosher food, a minyan or help with the language can head to one of these three welcome centers to ask for assistance. The storefront on Av. Nossa Sra. de Copacabana.581.Ioja 3 will be manned by Chabad-Lubavitch of Rio, according to Rabbi Ilan Stiefelmann, right in the center of Copacabana. There will also be one at Chabad Rio’s main center in the Leblon neighborhood and a third at the Chabad center led by Rabbi Yosef Simonowits in Barra da Tijuca, in the Rio neighborhood to the newly constructed Olympic stadium, where most of the sporting events will take place.

All three centers will be stocked with kosher food, tefillin, and prayer materials. On Shabbat there will be special food, including wine and challah, as well.

Rabbi Yehoshua Goldman, co-director of Chabad of Rio told Chabad.org that representatives of Israel’s Paralympics team already called his office this past February. As a result, his synagogue — Beit Lubavitch Rio De Janeiro — will host an official Shabbat program for the team, including accommodations for the observant athletes and staff.

Goldman and colleague Rabbi Eliyahu Haber were also appointed by the Brazilian Olympic Committee as two of the three Jewish chaplains to the 2016 Summer Games. They have already ensured the Jewish room at the Olympic Village will be staffed by rabbinical students and stocked as well as the three Chabad welcome centers.

Although the Brazilian Olympics Committee has reportedly supported the rabbis in their application for a kosher food concession stand at the Olympic Stadium, however, permission has not yet been granted by the International Olympic Committee.

Hana Levi Julian

Brazil Suspends President who Blocked Dani Dayan’s Appointment

Thursday, May 12th, 2016

Brazil’s Senate on Thursday morning voted to impeach and suspend President Dilma Rousseff, who will now face a trial for the 2014 illegal manipulation of the country’s finances in order to conceal the burgeoning deficit ahead of the elections. The Senate voted to suspend Rousseff by a 55 to 22 majority, in a 20-hour session that lasted through the night. Rousseff’s Vice-President Michel Temer will replace her a president during her trial. It is expected that the trial will last about six months, which will preventing the disgraced Rousseff from presiding over the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, which start on 5 August.

And, speaking of blocking, Rousseff has gained much negative press in Israel when she chose, on the advice of Israeli Arab MKs and Labour MK Tzipi Livni, to refuse the accreditation of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s choice for Israel’s ambassador to Brazil, Dani Dayan, because the latter resides in Judea and Samaria.

Back in January, Dayan tweeted bitterly, “14 MKs labored indefatigably against my appointment in Brazil: 13 Joint Arab List members and one Tzipi Livni.” The snub was an unprecedented show of rudeness on the part of the leftwing Brazilian president, who may now be facing her own change of legal residence.

MK Yousef Jabareen (Joint Arab List) met with the Brazilian ambassador in Israel and delivered a personal message to President Rousseff: “I told the ambassador we represent about one fifth of the citizens of the state who object to the appointment,” he told Ma’ariv.

The PA former minister Saeb Erekat told a Brazilian paper that accepting Dayan would mean Brazil cooperates with apartheid and colonizing. Erekat said “Dayan is an illegal settler, whose job is to justify the criminal colonizing of Palestine by Israel.”

But, judging by his tweet, Dani Dayan did not begrudge Erekat or the Arab MKs their objections, although it should raise eyebrows when the loyal opposition is advocating with a foreign power to obstruct the government’s foreign policy. Dani Dayan was bitter and hurting over what he knew to be Tzipi Livni’s working behind the scenes to torpedo his appointment.

Livni justified President Rousseff’s rejection of Dayan, saying it wasn’t personal but an expression of the Brazilians’ rejection of Israel’s settlements policy. Dayan suspects that Livni went out of her way to convince the Brazilians to stand firm in their humiliating rejection of an official foreign dignitary. Livni was ousted by Netanyahu when, as his chief peace negotiator, she pursued unauthorized meetings with the PA delegation.

Rousseff, who became president in January 2011 and began a second term in 2015, has called her impeachment a “coup,” and made a last-ditch appeal to the Supreme Court to stop it — but was rejected.

This is also the end of the 13-year rule of Brazil’s Workers’ Party.


Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/brazil-suspends-president-who-blocked-dani-dayans-appointment/2016/05/12/

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