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July 31, 2016 / 25 Tammuz, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Europe’

State Dept. Reports Growing Anti-Semitism a ‘Global Problem’

Friday, October 16th, 2015

The U.S. State Department’s annual report on international religious freedom this week describes that anti-Semitism continues “to be a major problem around the globe with increases in anti-Semitic incidents recorded in many countries.”

In particular, European countries such as France and Germany have experienced a rise in anti-Israel sentiment that often crossed over into anti-Semitism during the summer of 2014.

According to the report, there has been a 101-percent increase in anti-Semitic incidents in France, including “numerous cases of physical violence against the Jewish community where individuals were targeted and beaten and synagogues were fire bombed.”

The report, citing a positive response to the rise of anti-Semitism in Europe, said.

After the February 14-15 terrorist attacks in Denmark that killed a guard outside a synagogue and a filmmaker at a free speech event, thousands of people of different faiths formed a human ring outside the synagogue in Copenhagen to ‘send a powerful statement’ that ‘Jews should be able to have their religion in peace.’

Swedes and Norwegians also formed a human ring around their capitals’ main synagogues in an inter-faith show of support.

JNS News Service

If Egypt Can Destroy Gaza’s Tunnels…

Sunday, September 20th, 2015

The topography of Israel’s shared border with Hamas-occupied Gaza is far too complicated, different and longer than Egypt’s shared border with Gaza to replicate what Egypt just did, but it does make one think about other possible solutions.

Fed up with Hamas sending terrorists into the Sinai via the underground tunnels, as well as the smuggling tunnels, Egypt redirected water from the Mediterranean sea, flooding everything under the ground along their shared border.

If we’re already being creative, here’s another thought… the Mediterranean could be Israel’s solution too.

Perhaps Israel could find a way to get every Gazan $5000, a fake Syrian passport (there’s plenty of those floating around) and a seat on a boat sailing across the Mediterranean into to Europe.

Once the sane people leave, it’s clean up time, and we rebuild Gush Katif.

Photo of the Day

Reykjavík’s Revised Anti-Israel Boycott to Hit Only Judea & Samaria Jews

Saturday, September 19th, 2015

(JNi.media) Reykjavík Mayor Dagur B. Eggertsson announced on Saturday on Icelandic national broadcaster RÚV that Reykjavík City Council is canceling its boycott of all Israeli products, limiting the boycott instead to goods produced by Jews in Judea and Samaria, Iceland Review reported.

Dagur admitted that the original boycott motion approved by the council hadn’t been prepared well enough, but now it would be “changed and clarified.”

“I have stated that it should have been made much clearer in the text [that only products from territories occupied by Israel should be boycotted], although that’s what we had in mind. I will suggest to the City Council that the motion the way it reads now be withdrawn while we discuss the next steps and how to present it,” the mayor said.

Dagur added: “I must admit that I’m angry at myself for not having done this the way I wanted.” He said he was surprised by the reaction to the decision. “I expected a reaction but not on this scale. It appears to be a stronger reaction than when Iceland declared support for an independent Palestine [in 2011].”

Israel’s Foreign Ministry condemned the move, which came “for no reason or justification except for hatred for its own sake.” The ministry added: “We hope someone in Iceland will come to their senses and end the one-sided blindness against Israel, the only democracy in the Middle East.” And Iceland’s Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson called the decision “ridiculous.” The Simon Wiesenthal Center recommended that Jews not travel to Iceland.

“I had a good conversation today with Mayor of Copenhagen Frank Jensen, who has gone through the same … thing. The first news stories had the same interpretation, that Copenhagen was to boycott all products from Israel, and Frank had to put a lot of effort into correcting it. … That’s part of the project ahead, to deliver a clear message,” Dagur promised.

Here’s a tidbit from JNi.media’s earlier feature on Iceland’s anti-Semitism (Iceland’s Chilly Treatment of Jews and the Freeze on Israeli Goods): In 2012, Rabbi Abraham Cooper of the Simon Wiesenthal Center wrote a letter to Iceland’s radio and TV director, Pall Magnusson, objecting to the reading of Hymns of Passion by Hallgrimur Petursson which were broadcast leading up to Easter. In the Passion Psalms, Petursson repeated the words for Jews—”Judar” and “Gydingar”—fifty times in fifty psalms, in every case with negative associations of dishonesty, hatred, perfidy and pride. But Magnusson denied the anti=-Semitic allegation, and replied, “I strongly believe that your somewhat harsh interpretation of what you call ‘anti-Semitic references’ in the hymns are not justified.” He didn’t explain why they were not justified, except to refer to how old they are. “I ask you to bear in mind that the hymns were written 350 years ago, and they describe the poet’s feelings about events that supposedly took place 2,000 years ago …. and are a cherished part of Iceland’s cultural history and heritage.” Among these cherished verses demonstrating Iceland’s cultural history and heritage are: “The righteous law of Moses / The Jews here misapplied / Which their deceit exposes / Their hatred and their pride.”

JNi.Media

Netanyahu Hints at Nazi Germany in Reaction to EU’s ‘West Bank’ Labeling

Friday, September 11th, 2015

The European Union promotes anti-Semitism while saying it fights it.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu implicitly referred to Nazi Gammy in his reaction to yesterday’s European Union resolution to label products from Judea, Samaria and the Golan Heights as being “made in settlements in occupied territories.”

The European Parliament, as reported here, voted overwhelmingly in favor of a resolution to label products from the Golan Heights, Judea and Samaria “in the spirit of differentiation between Israel and its activities in the occupied Palestinian Territory,” although it is Syria and not the Palestinian Authority that claims the Golan.

Prime Minister Netanyahu stated:

This is unjust. It is simply a distortion of justice and of logic and I think that it also hurts peace; it does not advance peace. The root of the conflict is not the territories, and the root of the conflict is not the settlements.

We have historical memory of what happened when Europe labeled Jewish products.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Aliyah Rises 13% Since Last Rosh HaShanah

Wednesday, September 9th, 2015

Immigration to Israel is up 13% compared with last year, with most of the rise from France and Ukraine among 97 countries whose citizens made Aliyah.

Approximately 3,600 Jews from North American have moved to Israel since last Rosh HaShanah, approximately the same number as the year before,

In the past 12 months, 29,500 Jews made Aliyah, compared with 26,000 in the Hebrew calendar year of 5774.

Most of this year’s immigrants came from the former Soviet Union – 14,100, compared with 10,800 last year – and from Europe, from where approximately 9,000 people came on Aliyah, 600 more than the previous year.

There was a modest increase in Aliyah from South America.

The two largest sources of Aliyah were France, with 7,350 immigrants compared with 6,700 in 5774, a 10% increase), and Ukraine, with 6,900 immigrants compared to 4,600 last year, a 50% increase.

The Jewish Agency and the Ministry of Aliyah and Immigrant Absorption have been running programs in both countries in order to encourage Aliyah and remove barriers to the immigrants’ integration in Israeli society. Aliyah from Russia also saw a significant 23% increase with the arrival of some 5,900 immigrants this year compared to 4,800 in 5774.

Also in Europe, some 690 immigrants arrived in Israel from the United Kingdom, a 13% increase when compared with the 612 who came last year. Some 400 arrived from Italy, a 30% increase, compared with 300 last year, and 290 came from Belgium, similar to last year’s figure.

Immigrants to Israel came from 97 countries across the world. One immigrant each came from Andorra, Angola, Namibia, Paraguay, the Philippines, and Slovakia.

Chairman of the Executive of The Jewish Agency for Israel Natan Sharansky said:

For the past few years, the majority of immigrants to Israel have been coming from free and democratic Western countries. These immigrants’ free choice to live in Israel, and their preference for Israel over other countries, is the true triumph of Zionism.

Minister of Aliyah and Immigrant Absorption Ze’ev Elkin estimated that Aliyah in the civilian calendar year of 2015 will be the highest in a decade, with 30,000-35,000 new immigrants expected.

Thousands of the new “olim” are young college graduates in engineering and technology, and more than 1,000 are doctors and other medical professionals.

The three most popular destinations in Israel were Tel Aviv-Yafo, which welcomed some 3,500 new immigrants, the coastal city of Netanya with 3,400, and Jerusalem, which some 3,000 new immigrants made their home in 5775.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

European Leaders Reaffirm Commitment to ‘Fight Anti-Semitism’

Tuesday, September 8th, 2015

European leaders have reaffirmed their commitment to fight anti-Semitism, according to Rabbi Menachem Margolin, director of the European Jewish Association (EJA), who received greetings from the heads of most countries in the EU.

Margolin was the recipient of holiday greetings from Europe’s leadership ahead of the upcoming Jewish high holy days, particularly Rosh Hashana, the Jewish new year, which begins next Sunday night.

The continent’s leaders are seeking to “reinforce with Europe’s historic Jewish communities and reaffirm their commitment to fighting the wave of anti-Semitic acts that have blighted cities across the European Union,” Margolin said.

Messages of support and solidarity were led by France’s Francois Hollande, who departed from the secular protocol of the French Republic to send his new year wishes to European Jewry. The French president offered a firm commitment to fight “against all words and acts of an anti-Semitic nature, and to allow everyone to live together, without exception, with the same values of freedom, tolerance and community”.

French Premier Manuels Valls added his “readiness to fight against anti-Semitism, and all forms of racism and intolerance, and to tirelessly support European initiatives designed to defend the values which shape our democracies”.

Austrian President Heinz K. Fischer spoke out in support of “the common interest of Jews in Europe.” Fischer said he sought to renew Austria’s ties with the Jewish State by way of its commitment to “the safeguarding of Israel.”

He added that Austria remains committed to the protection of fundamental rights and freedoms in Europe and the world, and to the “safeguarding of minorities including the Jewish community in Austria, which has always strongly influenced our country’s culture,” he added.

Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel also reaffirmed his “excellent relationship with the Jewish community in Belgium.”

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte recalled his country’s endorsement of a joint statement on anti-Semitism at an informal meeting of the United Nations General Assembly last January.

“I share your concern about rising anti-Semitism in Europe,” he said in his message to European Jewry. “This scourge affects Jewish communities first, but in essence it is a threat to society as a whole,” he added.

EJA General Director, Rabbi Margolin thanked the European leaders for their wishes and commitments.

“Rabbis and community leaders across Europe report that in light of the growing anti-Semitism and nationalist atmosphere there has been a significant decline in the number of Jews who take part in community activities,” he said.

“However, Jewish communities are working hard to help Jews attend Rosh Hashanah services. Major security measures are being taken and we can report that there is a relative increase in the number of Jews who have expressed their intention to attend synagogues over Rosh Hashanah with their families, compared to last year. “

In Manchester, England alone, anti-Semitic incidents rose by nearly 80 percent in 12 months, according to a report issued by the Community Security Trust earlier this year.

A 17-year-old boy was beaten unconscious in an attack by three men who attacked him and three other Jews this past Saturday night. The boy remains hospitalized with a suspected brain bleed. The three other victims, ages 17, 18 and 20, were also verbally and physically assaulted but did not require admission to hospital.

Hana Levi Julian

Lufthansa Long-Haul Strike Set for Tuesday

Monday, September 7th, 2015

Lufthansa Airlines pilots are set to strike all day on Tuesday as part of a job action targeting management over salary, retirement benefits and budget cuts.

The pilots’ union, Vereinigung cockpit (VC) has specifically called the all-day strike for the airline’s long-haul and cargo flights flying out of German from 0600 GMT to 2159 GMT.

The union represetns some 5,000 Lufthansa and Germanwings pilots. Relations between management and the union broke down last week in talks over a new contract.

The union offered to increase the average retirement age to 60 and other ways to drop costs to a level similar to that of EasyJet.

Management is facing pressure as it tries to maintain its marketshare against budget rivals such as Ryanair, which advertises itself as “Europe’s cheapest airline” and which is targeting Germany in a market war for new passengers. Ryanair does not fly outside of Europe.

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/lufthansa-long-haul-strike-set-for-tuesday/2015/09/07/

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