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January 16, 2017 / 18 Tevet, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘JEWS’

German Court Rules No Jail for Muslim Synagogue Arsonists

Saturday, January 14th, 2017

The German court in the city of Wuppertal has upheld the 2015 decision of a lower court validating an attempt by three Muslim attackers who tried in 2014 to burn down a synagogue as a means of “drawing attention to the Gaza conflict” with Israel.

The attack took place on the anniversary of Kristallnacht – the night in which the Nazis hordes burned down more than 1,000 synagogues in Germany, including the original synagogue in Wuppertal, and killed nearly 100 Jews.

At the time of the attack, the 81-year-old former president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, Charlotte Knobloch, declared, “When synagogues burn, it is time for all leaders to ask, ‘What must we do to protect Jewish citizens!” She also demanded to know why other German citizens were not responding to the anti-Semitic outrages and instead were remaining silent – again – and added, “Whoever is silent now affirms what is happening!”

Several days prior to the firebombing, “Free Palestine” was sprayed in paint on the wall of the synagogue. The case was first reported by Jerusalem Post journalist Benjamin Weinthal.

The German regional court ruled that the actions of the three Muslim perpetrators were governed by “anti-Israelism” and not anti-Semitism. The judge declined to incarcerate the attackers.

Green Party MP Volker Beck protested the ruling, saying, “This is a decision as far as the motives of the perpetrators are concerned. What do Jews in Germany have to do with the Middle East conflict? Every bit as much as Christians, non-religious people or Muslims in Germany, namely, absolutely nothing. The ignorance of the judiciary toward anti-Semitism is for many Jews in Germany especially alarming.”

Dr. Moshe Kantor, president of the European Jewish Congress, expressed outrage at the verdict.

“It is unbelievable that attempts to burn a synagogue have been equated with displeasure of Israeli government policies,” said Dr. Moshe Kantor, President of the EJC. “This has now given a carte blanche to anti-Semites across Germany to attack Jews because a German court has given them a ready justification.

“This court decision equates to open season on Jews.”

The decision “can also lead to anarchy across Germany because it provides a legal justification for the targeting of any minority, religion and nationality on the basis of a conflict that they could be in some way connected to because of religious or national ties,” Kantor continued. “Is it possible that when Arabs are targeted by far-Right groups then it could be claimed they are reacting to the bloodshed and violence in the Arab world? That of course would be absurd, but like in many other areas, there appears to be a separate rule when it comes to Jews and anti-Semitism.

“In fact, it could be argued that this ruling as it singles out a different way of treating Jews has elements of anti-Semitism,” he said.

A new definition of anti-Semitism was agreed upon last May at a conference of the Berlin-based International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA), which Germany is a member of, and which stated that “Holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel” is anti-Semitic.

Hana Levi Julian

The Jew’s Calling Card

Friday, January 6th, 2017

Editor’s Note: Rebbetzin Jungreis, a”h, is no longer with us in a physical sense, but her message is eternal and The Jewish Press will continue to present the columns that for more than half a century have inspired countless readers around the world.

 * * * * *

Our sages ask, Who is wise? He who can learn from every person.” But can we really learn from every person? Is that realistic? Jew and gentile, young and old, nasty and nice – can we really learn from everyone?

“Ya, mein kind,my father would say – “Yes, you can learn from everyone.” From a nasty person you can learn never to be mean and from a good person you can always collect some gems. I try never to forget that lesson and at all times attempt to absorb something positive from each of my encounters, good or bad.

My father imparted to me an additional teaching: “Bear in mind that when you encounter people they will also learn from you.”

Back in 2012 I spent a number of challenging days at Scripps Memorial Hospital in San Diego. Throughout my stay I heard my father’s voice: “You are an observant Jew in this 99-percent gentile hospital. No matter how ill you feel, no matter what your pain may be, remember you are teaching others through your example and words.”

Additionally, I realized that as a Jew in a non-Jewish environment, whatever I would say and whatever I would do would not only be a reflection of and on me personally but of and on my people as well. These were the thoughts that went through my mind and became the compass that guided and directed me.

Jeanette was the physical therapist assigned to teach me to walk again. “Rebbetzin,” she would ask, “from one to ten, how is your pain?”

Baruch Hashem,” I would say and choose a number. She was fascinated with the words “Baruch Hashem” and asked me to explain the deeper significance of this phrase.

When we say Baruch Hashem, I told her, we proclaim our gratitude to G-d. That gratitude is one of the pillars of our faith. It is constant. It is ever-present. So whether we find ourselves in a hospital or enjoying the sunshine in a resort, we proclaim “Baruch Hashem” – literally “bless G-d” but in that context we mean “praise G-d.”

There is an additional teaching to Baruch Hashem, I explained. Life is such that sometimes we think we are on a smooth journey but then complications arise. We drive our cars without a care and then the bumps start – the car shakes from left to right and we may even fall into a pothole. Suddenly our cell phone rings. “How’s it going?” a friend asks. We don’t want to share that we’re in a pothole but we don’t want to lie either. So what do we say without compromising our integrity? It’s simple. Baruch Hashem. And if you think about it, there’s always a huge Baruch Hashem in all of our lives.

I further explained that when we wake up in the morning the very first words to come to our lips are “Modeh Ani” – “I thank You.” I Thank You for restoring my soul, for renewing my lease and granting me yet another day to see the sunshine and to pray – even if for nothing else than to say “Amen.”

I told her about my husband of blessed memory, HaRav Meshulem HaLevi Jungreis, zt”l, who in his last days at Sloan Kettering Memorial Hospital made an amazing request. He wanted to be taken outside to breathe the fresh air. I asked permission from the doctors and they agreed, provided it was only for a few minutes. My two sons lovingly carried him and my daughters and I went with them. I’ll never forget that day. It was a cold winter morning. Earlier it had snowed. We told my husband he could not stay outdoors too long. He assured us he just wanted a few minutes and then he raised his voice and with tears in his eyes said, “Baruch Hashem; Baruch Hashem for the life You gave me.”

Mind you, my husband was a survivor of Hitler’s hell who came to this country an orphan. His entire family had been annihilated and yet in his last days he desired nothing more than to thank G-d for every moment of his existence – for the spring, for the cold of winter, for the storms, for the sun, for the suffering and sorrow, for the kindness and joy. It was all “Baruch Hashem.”

So you, see Jeanette,” I said, “ ‘Baruch Hashem’ goes a long, long way. There are no incidents in life that cannot be embraced, as painful as some of them may be, if you remember ‘Baruch Hashem.’ If you remember that, you will always find a little light even in the darkest clouds. Baruch Hashem’ is our credo that has enabled us to survive the centuries.”

And I told her a “Baruch Hashem” story about my father. In his last years a trach was placed in his throat and he could no longer speak. My father was a tzaddik; teaching and speaking were his life. He never discussed his pain but I knew it must have been agonizing for him. Yet when someone would approach his bedside and inquire about his health he would mouth, “Baruch Hashem.”

Some years after his passing a member of our congregation, Mr. Herman Harris, was visiting a nursing home in honor of Chanukah. He distributed packages of goodies and wished everyone a good Yom Tov. After seeing all the patients, he had one package left. He looked around for a nurse whose actions reflected kindness and compassion. After seeing one such person he approached her and said, “Please accept this little token for the holidays.” She looked up and smiled and without any hesitation responded, “Baruch Hashem.”

Herman was taken aback because the nurse was not Jewish. He asked her, “How do you know that phrase?” She replied, “I had a patient, a saintly rabbi, who taught it to me.” Herman asked the nurse who that patient was. “Rabbi Jungreis,” she said. “He was a holy man; even when he had no voice and was consumed by pain, he mouthed the words ‘Baruch Hashem.’ ”

Jeanette’s eyes filled with tears and she said to me, “I like that phrase ‘Baruch Hashem.’ It’s going to be part of my daily vocabulary and I will try to teach it to others.”

This is why we must always ask ourselves, in every situation: What is the message I am imparting? What is the calling card I am leaving behind?

Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

Neo-Nazi ‘March on Jews’ Planned for Jan. 15 in Whitefish, Montana

Thursday, January 5th, 2017

The townspeople of Whitefish, Montana are gearing up to deal with the impact of an upcoming ‘March on the Jews’ in their community by neo-Nazis who also vow to bring “high-powered rifles” to the event.

The Daily Stormer neo-Nazi website founder, Andrew Anglin, is behind the march which allegedly is set for Sunday, January 15.

Anglin made the announcement through public media, a local ABC FOX television station and the Missoula Independent newspaper. But there has been no application yet filed for a permit to march in the town, according to The Forward, which interviewed researcher Marilyn Mayo from the New York-based Anti-Defamation League on the matter.

“We haven’t seen any evidence that the march will happen at this point,” Mayo told the news outlet.

Anglin, on the other hand, has been promoting the event — or at least, threatening to hold it — for at least a month.

“We are planning an armed protest in Whitefish,” he wrote on his website last month. “We can easily march through the center of the town carrying high powered rifles.”

He said he plans the march against “Jews, Jewish businesses and everyone who supports either.”

Whitefish Police were not available to comment. But in the state of Montana, a permit is not required to buy a weapon, nor to carry one openly. A permit is needed to carry a concealed weapon only in certain circumstances, according to the National Rifle Association.

Hana Levi Julian

At Joshua’s Tomb: 10 Jews Come to Pray, Arabs Stone Them, Jews Get Arrested

Thursday, January 5th, 2017

Ten Jews who came to pray Wednesday night at the tomb of Biblical Joshua in the village of Kifl Haris, near Ariel, were attacked by stone throwing local Arabs – but when they called security forces for help they were promptly arrested, the Honenu legal aid society reported.

According to Honenu, which represents the detainees, the group entered the village, which is located in Area B, making it legal for Jews to enter (unlike Area A wich is entirely under Palestinian Authority control), and at some point the resident Arabs started pelting the vehicle with stones. The group managed to reach the graveside compound and sought shelter inside the structure. They then called security forces for help.

Except that, Honenu relates, upon arrival, the Israeli force decided to arrest the ten Jews who came to pray, ignoring the stone throwing Arab mob. Israeli police has announced it plans to arraign the praying Jews in the Petah Tikva Magistrate’s Court. They will be represented by Honenu attorney Hai Haber.

According to the Oslo Accords, Area B of Judea and Samaria is under Palestinian civil control and joint Israeli-Palestinian security control. As of 2013, Area B formally comprised about 22% of the liberated territories, with some 440 Arab villages and their surrounding lands, and no Israeli settlements.

Under the Oslo Accords segment governing religious sites, the Palestinian Authority agrees to ensure free access to a specific list of Jewish religious sites located in Areas A and B as specified in the 1995 “Interim Agreement on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.” But because the Arabs are in the habit of firebombing and stoning Jews who attempt to take advantage of the signed agreement, the IDF restricts visits by Jews to “rare occasions.” Meanwhile, in Area C, Arabs enjoy uninterrupted access to sites such as al-Maghtas on the Jordan River and Nabi Musa.

A few months ago an identical episode took place – Jews were attacked by an Arab mob at the Joshua tomb and were promptly arrested by Israeli cops who didn’t bother to deal with the violent attackers. Police plan to ask the court to remand one of the Jews who were arrested Wednesday night because had been arrested a few months ago as well.

A serial praying Jews if we ever saw one.

David Israel

Anti-Trump Jews Petition Against Simon Wiesenthal Museum Founder Attending Inauguration

Wednesday, January 4th, 2017

Rabbi Marvin Hier, the founder and dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center and the Museum of Tolerance, is one of six religious leaders who were invited take part in President Elect Donald Trump’s inauguration ceremony January 20 (That’s Tevet 22 to you and me).

Which is why Mya Stark, a businesswoman from Los Angeles, is calling on the Hebrews to sign her petition which she titled: “Rabbi Marvin Hier: do not offer a ‘prayer’ at Trump Inauguration.” No idea why she put quotes around the word prayer.

President George W. Bush appointed Hier to serve on the Honorary Delegation to accompany him to Jerusalem for the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the State of Israel in May 2008. He is working on a A $100 million Museum of Tolerance and Human Dignity to be built in Jerusalem.

Inaugural Committee Chairman Tom Barrack said that “since the first inaugural ceremony, our leaders have paid tribute to the blessings of liberty that have been bestowed upon our country and its people,” which is why “I am pleased to announce that a diverse set of faith leaders will offer readings and prayers at the swearing-in of President Elect Trump and honor the vital role religious faith plays in our multicultural, vibrant nation.”

“I am shocked and dismayed to see no such protest from Jews over Rabbi Marvin Hier’s agreement to deliver a ‘prayer’ at the Inauguration. Hier is the head of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, named for the heroic Nazi-hunter, and the Museum of Tolerance – normalizing Trump with his participation will turn these organizations into a mockery and be a shame on the Jewish name forever.”

To justify her bizarre ire, Stark pulls the tried and true KKK card, writing: “Apparently, Hier thinks it is acceptable to legitimize and collaborate with a political figure who the KKK is literally marching in the streets to celebrate.”

Don’t forget Vladimir Putin and Naftali Bennett…

“Even more shameful and disgusting,” she continues, “it has just been revealed that the Simon Wiesenthal Center under Hier has been the recipient of donations from Jared Kushner (Ivanka Trump’s husband) family foundation.”

Note the absence of an explanation as to why a donation from the Kushner foundation is impure. Stark relied on a hatchet job report by Judy Maltz in Ha’aretz Monday, which revealed to the world the shocking facts about the Kushner donation, and using – for irony – the fact that the Weisenthal Center 2016 list of “Top 10 Worst Global Anti-Semitic Anti-Israel Incidents” had in the No. 5 spot white nationalist leader Richard Spencer, “who celebrated the Trump victory with a Nazi-style salute.”

Looks like guilt by association is back in style big time.

Stark reaches a kid of height of chutzpah when she concludes: “Rabbi Hier, redeem your name and the name of the important organizations you lead by dropping out of the Inauguration proceedings,” and, “Simon Wiesenthal Center, take disciplinary action against Hier if he refuses to desist from this shameful action.”

We’re actually looking forward to hearing the good rabbi. The petition, incidentally, as of Wednesday, is still shy of 1,000 signatures.

JNi.Media

Jews 2nd Largest Religious Group in 115th Congress

Wednesday, January 4th, 2017

Out of the 535 members of the incoming US Congress, 30 are Jews, following the 485 members of both houses who define themselves as Christian, according to the Pew Research Center. Jews make up 2% of the US adult population but account for 6% of Congress.

Jews also account for 50% of the Supreme Court.

Lagging behind are the Mormons (who are kind of Christian), with 13 members, Buddhists (3), Hindus (3), Muslims (2), and 1 each: Unitarian Universalists and Unaffiliated.

Among the 293 Republicans elected to serve in the 115th Congress, 291 identify as Christians; there are two Jewish Republicans – Lee Zeldin of New York and David Kustoff of Tennessee, both serving in the House.

The 242 Democrats in Congress include 28 Jews, and those three Buddhists, three Hindus, two Muslims and one Unitarian Universalist. The Democratic delegation also includes the only member of Congress who describes herself as unaffiliated, Rep. Kyrsten Sinema from Arizona.

In fact, according to Pew, the group that’s most underrepresented are the religiously unaffiliated, which accounts for 23% of the general public but is represented by only 0.2% of Congress.

Two-thirds of Republicans in the new Congress (67%) are Protestant, 27% Catholic. 42% of the Democratic members are Protestants and 37% Catholics.

JNi.Media

Exclusive: Huckabee Calls US Abstention at UNSC ‘Act of Hate Towards Israel’ By Obama Administration [video]

Tuesday, January 3rd, 2017

Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee won’t say whether Israel has anything more to fear from the outgoing administration of U.S. President Barack Obama following the latest debacle at the United Nations Security Council; but he is absolutely certain that whatever happens, it can be fixed.

In the wake of last month’s American abstention on Resolution 2334(2016) allowing unanimous passage of a vote to condemn any Israeli presence in post ’67 territories, including numerous Jerusalem neighborhoods, the Western Wall and other holy sites in the Old City of Jerusalem, Israeli leaders are now waiting for the other shoe to drop.

In an exclusive interview in Jerusalem on Tuesday with Avi Abelow and the Israel Video Network, the Republican governor said in a philosophical tone, “Well, the good news is, Obama is gone in 17 days. But,” he added with a reassuring smile, “believe me, nothing that Obama can do, is permanent. Every bit of it can be undone. And I believe that most all of it will be undone.”

Gov. Huckabee called the move at the UN an ‘act of hate toward Israel on the part of the Obama administration,” but emphasized it was “not an act from the American people. Israelis need to know that,” he said, “because it was embarrassing to most Americans, and most Americans were outraged by the actions at the UN.”

An evangelical Christian, the governor is passionate about his faith, and about his love for Israel. He called the U.S. abstention “cowardly — underline — cowardly, because they did that without really advance notice, they did that really in spite of every action that we have historically taken with Israel, and we did that without any attempt to ameliorate the potential damage.

“It was,” he said, “disgusting.”

From the outset, the governor spoke of his intense dedication to the Holy Land, and his commitment to the State. This is the 44th year that Mike Huckabee is visiting Israel, and he noted that he has brought literally thousands of people to see this land over the years with him.

Evangelical Christians comprise the largest support base for Israel in the United States, he said, explaining, “It’s possible to be Jewish and have nothing to do with Christians. You cannot be Christian and not have everything to do with Judaism, because everything that’s in the Old Testament we embrace and believe.”

Gov. Huckabee first arrived in Israel at the age of 17, when Israel was still “a desert,” as he called it. But, “I grew up in the belief that Israel is not just another country, and the Land is not just another piece of real estate. God gave the title deed to Abraham 4,000 years ago. Yerushalayim is not just another city in the world. It’s a city that was uniquely the capital for the Jewish State.

“The only people for whom Yerushalayim has ever been a capital have been the Jews. And when I hear people use words like, “occupation” I think, ‘yeah, this has been occupied before – occupied by the Babylonians, the Assyrians, by the Turks, by the Brits… by the Romans,’ but when it relates to the Jews it’s not occupied, it’s owned. This is ownership,” he said.

“Not occupation.”

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/exclusive-huckabee-calls-us-abstention-at-unsc-act-of-hate-towards-israel-by-obama-administration-video/2017/01/03/

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