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August 30, 2016 / 26 Av, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘London’

American Woman Killed, 5 Injured, Including Israeli, in Posh Central London Slashing by Somali-Norwegian

Thursday, August 4th, 2016

Officials are calling it a “spontaneous attack” but a Somali national with Norwegian citizenship stabbed to death a 60-year-old American woman Wednesday night and wounded five others, including one Israeli in a high-end section of central London.

The unidentified killer launched his rampage at about 10:30 pm in London’s elegant Russell Square, a park located close to the site of a July 2005 bombing by radical Islamist terrorists. One of the bombs in the coordinated bombing attack that killed 52 people detonated on a bus close to Russell Square.

The injured included an Israeli woman as well as a second U.S. citizen, an Australian national, and a local British citizen.

The killer, a Somali with Norwegian citizenship emigrated from the Scandinavian country in 2002. But it’s not clear whether he headed straight to the UK or made any other stops along the way, according to Norway’s National Criminal Service, CNN reported.

London Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley told reporters, “So far we have found no evidence of radicalization,” Reuters reported. Rowley added the investigation is focusing on mental health issues at present.

Police arrived within six minutes of being called to the scene and used a taser to bring the 19-year-old killer under control. He was taken into custody and subsequently arrested on suspicion of murder.

The site is also located in the heart of the university area, and is close to the British Museum and other famous landmarks.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan urged residents in the capital to report anything suspicious to the police.

“The safety of all Londoners is my number one priority, and my heart goes out to the victims of the incident in Russell Square and their loved ones,” Khan said.

Officials meanwhile increased the security presence around the city by some 600 armed police.

London counter-terror police officials warned the Da’esh (ISIS) terrorist organization has been attempting to radicalize those with mental health issues, with the goal of using them as operatives in terror attacks.

Hana Levi Julian

Report: 11% increase in UK Anti-Semitism in 2016

Thursday, August 4th, 2016

The first six months of 2016 saw an 11% increase in anti-Semitic hate incidents recorded in the UK compared with the same period in 2015, according to the Community Security Trust (CST) Anti-Semitic Incident Report January-June 2016, published Thursday.

CST recorded 557 anti-Semitic incidents nationwide during the first half of 2016, compared with 500 anti-Semitic incidents during the first six months of 2015. This total of 557 incidents is the second-highest CST has ever recorded in the January-June period of any year. The highest total for the first half of any year was in 2009, when 629 anti-Semitic incidents were recorded in reaction to the Gaza war of January 2009.

The long-term trend shows that the number of anti-Semitic incidents has remained at a relatively high level since the summer of 2014, when the UK saw a large spike in anti-Semitic incidents following that year’s Gaza war. Since then, average monthly anti-Semitic incident totals have ranged between 80 and 100 anti-Semitic incidents per month, whereas in the two years before they had ranged between 40 and 60 incidents per month.

CST has been recording anti-Semitic incidents in the UK since 1984.

Antisemitic graffiti, London, January 2016 / Photo credit: CST

Antisemitic graffiti, London, January 2016 / Photo credit: CST

CST discarded 364 reports it received between January and June 2016, which were not deemed to be anti-Semitic and are not included in this total.

The report shows no clear single cause for the increase in recorded anti-Semitic incidents—most of which took place in April, May and June: 99, 125 and 112 incidents respectively. The 125 anti-Semitic incidents recorded in May were the fourth-highest monthly total ever recorded by CST, and the 112 incidents recorded in June were the sixth-highest monthly total ever recorded.

CST recorded 133 anti-Semitic incidents that took place on social media, comprising 24% of the total of 557 incidents for the first half of 2016. Social media are now being used as tools for coordinated campaigns of anti-Semitic harassment, threats and abuse directed at Jewish public figures and other individuals.

79% of the 557 anti-Semitic incidents recorded by CST in the first six months of 2016 took place in the main Jewish centers of Greater London and Greater Manchester. However, the two cities saw very different trends: CST recorded 379 anti-Semitic incidents in Greater London, a rise of 62% from the same period in 2015, but in Greater Manchester, CST recorded 62 anti-Semitic incidents, a 54% drop.

CST recorded 41 violent anti-Semitic assaults in the first six months of 2016, a 13 per cent fall from the 47 violent assaults recorded in the first half of 2015. None of the 41 violent assaults recorded in the first six months of 2016 were serious enough to be classified as Extreme Violence, which would involve an incident that constituted grievous bodily harm or posed a threat to life. The 41 violent incidents comprised 7% of the overall total, compared with 9% in the first half of 2015 and 7% in the first six months of 2014.

There were 32 incidents of damage and desecration of Jewish property recorded by CST in the first six months of 2016, a decrease of 11% from the 36 incidents of this type recorded in the first half of 2015.

CST recorded 43 direct anti-Semitic threats during the first half of 2016, a 10% increase from the 39 incidents in the first six months of 2015. There were 431 incidents of anti-Semitic Abusive Behavior, a 16% increase. These incidents included anti-Semitic graffiti on non-Jewish property, hate mail, anti-Semitic verbal abuse and social media incidents that do not involve direct threats.

JNi.Media

Jewish Photographer Dorothy Bohm Brings Back ‘Sixties London’ [video]

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

If you’re in London on vacation this month, here’s an opportunity to explore the streets of 1960s London through the lens of eminent photographer Dorothy Bohm. Born in 1924 to o a Jewish-Lithuanian family in Konigsberg, East Prussia, Bohm escaped Nazism in 1939 when she was sent to England to finish her schooling, armed with a Leica camera handed to her by her father as she was departing. She Graduated from Manchester College of Technology in 1942 and worked in leading portrait studio in central Manchester. In 1945 she married Louis Bohm, in ’46 she opened “Studio Alexander” in Manchester, and in 1947 visited Palestine for the first time. Between 1947 and 1955, she traveled to Switzerland, lived in Paris, lived in New York and San Francisco, traveled around the US and Mexico, until in 1956 she settled in Hampstead, North London, where she still lives.

Church Street market, Marylebone / Dorothy Bohm, Courtesy

Church Street market, Marylebone / Dorothy Bohm, Courtesy

She continued to travel and shoot around the planet, but her retrospective show that ends August 29 at the Jewish Museum London steps back in time to discover the diversity of life in London in the 1960s, with photographs focusing on its inhabitants from all walks of life, from schoolchildren to fashion-conscious young adults to market traders.

Dorothy Bohm: Sixties London, at the Ben Uri Gallery & Museum through August 29 2016.

Open Daily 10 AM – 5 PM (Fridays 10 AM – 2 PM). Last entrance is 30 minutes before closing.

Jewish Museum London, Raymond Burton House, 129-131 Albert Street, London NW1 7NB

Tel: +44 (0)20 7284 7384

JNi.Media

What If They Commissioned an Anti-Settlements Exhibition and the Pictures Came Out Pastoral and Innocent?

Sunday, July 17th, 2016

Ragnar Kjartansson is a widely exhibited Icelandic performance artist. In a 2002 work called Death and the Children, he dressed up in a dark suit and carried a scythe, leading young children through a cemetery, answering their questions. In a 2006 live performance titled Sorrow Conquers Happiness, he wore a tuxedo and played the role of a 1940s nightclub crooner with an orchestra, singing, “Sorrow conquers happiness” over and over as the music swelled. In 2011, Kjartansson won the inaugural Malcolm Award at Performa 11, the visual art performance biennial, for his 12-hour work Bliss, which was performed without a break at the Abrons Arts Center on the Lower East Side of Manhattan with repeated performances of the finale of Mozart’s “Marriage of Figaro,” the moment when the count gets down on one knee and asks his wife for forgiveness, which she grants in an aria. Icelandic tenor Kristjan Johannson played the count.

For his exhibition titled Architecture and Morality, at the Center for Contemporary Art in Tel Aviv this season, Kjartansson, according to a press release, was going to “create a new, ambitious body of paintings within the specific context of Israel. He will spend two weeks painting the urban landscapes in the West Bank ‘En plein air’ (a fancy French term the press release misspelled and which means ‘outdoors’) akin to his performative painting practice over the past few years.”

Ragnar Kjartansson settlements exhibition / Source: CCA Facebook

Ragnar Kjartansson settlements exhibition / Source: CCA Facebook

So Ragnar Kjartansson took his canvas and stand and paints and brushes and went en plein air to various Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria, and what he brought back was, well, not so bad. He painted what he saw (a paraphrase on the New Yorker’s surrealist Gahan Wilson’s book of horror cartoons), and apparently he saw none of the blood curdling evil normally associated with the term “settlements” on the corner of south Tel Aviv’s Tsadok Hacohen and Kalisher Streets, which is where the CCA is located.

Ragnar Kjartansson settlements exhibition / Source: CCA Facebook

Ragnar Kjartansson settlements exhibition / Source: CCA Facebook

Or, as Galia Yahav put it in Ha’aretz this weekend, “The houses are rendered separately, one per painting. All of them are drawn from the front and fill the canvas in the same way and from the same distance. The style is blatantly amateurish and naïve, as though from a hobby group, deliberately bland, with obedient brushstrokes and a filling of blank spaces, turgid coloration and pedantically mimetic attention to detail.”

But, most upsetting, from Yahav’s point of view, “the result is a small, suburban neighborhood of villas, completely artificial, in which little Israeli flags attached to parked cars wave in the breeze and larger ones flop from the windows of houses. Without addresses or names of specific settlements, this artistic tactic poses with feigned innocence in the likeness of a 19th-century pilgrimage, in which the Holy Land is portrayed through misty eyes.”

Ragnar Kjartansson settlements exhibition / Source: CCA Facebook

Ragnar Kjartansson settlements exhibition / Source: CCA Facebook

In other words, this cutting-edge performance artist, who was going to do to the settlements what Edvard Munch did the screaming, came away from those colonialist, apartheid-dispensing satanic neighborhoods with a fairly bland set of impressions, which is what one could expect from suburban bedroom communities anywhere.

“Perhaps the idea was to depict a generic quality of life rife with sated insensitivity – architecture as amorality,” Yahav tried to dig up some evil from under those middle class shaggy rugs. “Or perhaps it’s the realization of violent fantasy through painting: the occupied territories without Palestinians, a heaven on earth.”

Ragnar Kjartansson settlements exhibition / Source: CCA Facebook

Ragnar Kjartansson settlements exhibition / Source: CCA Facebook

Curator Chen Tamir wrote that Kjartansson’s settlements paintings “tell a story about the banality of everyday life amid complex political turmoil.” Maybe. But it ain’t in those paintings. Indeed, Tamir conceded that the entire Kjartansson exhibition “is a bold statement on art’s futility in the face of social and political strife.”

Or maybe, just maybe, the Icelandic artist discovered and then made a point leftwing art critics can’t afford to admit: that things in those Jewish settlements and in all of Judea and Samaria, just aren’t nearly as bad as they are in many other, more troubled places, such as London, Paris, Brussels, Nice and Istanbul.

JNi.Media

Analysis: One Scary Outcome of Brexit Could Be Prime Minister Jeremy Corbyn

Friday, June 24th, 2016

As a million more Britons said no than yes to their country’s EU membership, Israel’s future relationship with the UK may take a downturn, and not because of the argument Prime Minister David Cameron was making during his campaign to remain in the Union.

Cameron earlier this week told an audience at the Jewish Care dinner in London that he wants to be at the EU discussion table, influencing policy whenever the EU decides on yet another anti-Israel move. Cameron also attacked Brexit proponent UKIP leader Nigel Farage’s message as being “opposite of everything that makes Britain great.”

“When we’re fighting terrorism and Islamist extremism are we better doing that out on our own or fighting together with our European partners,” Cameron said at the dinner (which raised almost $7 million). “When Europe is discussing its attitude towards Israel do you want Britain – Israel’s greatest friends – in there opposing boycotts, or do you want us outside the room, powerless to affect the conversation.”

It’s a nice argument, made by the same greatest friend of Israel who only last February called Israeli construction in eastern Jerusalem “genuinely shocking” during a discussion in Parliament. “I am well-known for being a strong friend of Israel, but I have to say the first time I visited Jerusalem and had a proper tour around that wonderful city and saw what had happened with the effective encirclement of East Jerusalem, occupied East Jerusalem, it is genuinely shocking,” Cameron said during a weekly question-answer session.

With friends like that…

But that’s water under the bridge now, on Friday morning, after Cameron has already announced he is quitting his post as Prime Minister since Britain had voted to leave the European Union after being a member since the 1970s. “We must now prepare for a renegotiations with the EU,” he said, explaining that “above all this will require strong determined and committed leadership. I think the country requires fresh leadership to take it in that direction.”

The Labour party’s response to the referendum results was a masterpiece of spin. Unlike the Conservatives, who were split over Brexit, Labour was all out in favor of remaining in the EU. Now read the Labour talking points as sent out to members Friday morning:

“Clearly many communities across our country feel left behind and cut off by the political establishment in Brussels and Westminster. This was a rejection of the status quo by millions of people who are not sharing in the wealth of this country, for whom the economy is not working.

“After this divisive campaign and close vote, the first task is to come together and heal the divisions. Our country is divided and things need to change. Politicians on all sides must respect the voice of the British people, who have spoken.

“Labour is the only party that can meet the challenge we now face. We realize that people want politicians who put them first. As the party that stands up for working people, Labour is best placed re-unite the country – we can do so as we did not engage in project fear, and we share people’s dissatisfaction with the status quo, which is why we put a critical case for both remain and reform.

“In making this argument Labour showed that it is far closer to the centre of gravity of the British public than other political parties. Jeremy is uniquely placed as a critical remainer. He understands why people voted to leave, he understood people’s criticisms of Europe – and is the only leader of a major party in Britain to whom that applies.”

The talking points document concluded:

“The Tories cannot possibly provide the leadership we need — they are divided from top to bottom. It is hard to see how David Cameron has a long-term future as Prime Minister, but Labour’s immediate priority is to stabilize the country and the markets.”

Possibly. Which would throw a new, more menacing light on Cameron’s warnings regarding Israel’s only friend in Great Britain: should the Tories exit stage-right, Israel would not need to worry so much about facing a more hostile European Union, rather it should be concerned about facing arch-anti-Israel Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

JNi.Media

Wanstead High School ‘Speak Out’ and Blood Libel

Sunday, May 29th, 2016

Wanstead High School in the UK awarded student Leanne Mohamad the winner of the Jack Petchey “Speak Out” Challenge.

The only problem is that Leanne’s arguments were lies, blood libels, and full of Jew hatred and hatred towards the State of Israel.

Brian of London took some time out of his busy day to answer this video. Alas, Brian forgot to raise his Israeli flag at the end of the video, which is perhaps the most fitting response.

Despite the rabid applause Leanne received (a cause for concern in of itself), this story is not without a somewhat good ending according to Edgar. Speakers Trust, who runs the competition on behalf of the Jack Petchey Foundation, decided that Leanne would not be going to the Grand Final, as her speech violated 2 fundamental rules of the contest.

Though how she got so far with her hate speech is still a question, and will this foundation and the school let her disgusting blood libels remain unchallenged?

Video of the Day

Former London Mayor Compares EU to Napoleon, Hitler, Ahead of June 23 Brexit Referendum

Sunday, May 15th, 2016

Former London mayor Boris Johnson has told the Sunday Telegraph that the European Union is behaving like Adolf Hitler, striving to create a super-state. “Napoleon, Hitler, various people tried this out, and it ends tragically,” he said.

Johnson is a leader of the campaign to pull the UK out of the EU at the June 23 referendum. At this point the polls show the supporters and opponents of leaving the EU are split almost down the middle. Johnson’s comments received strong criticism from opponents who called them “offensive,” saying he showed a “lack of judgement.”

For his part, Johnson argued that “fundamentally what is lacking is the eternal problem, which is that there is no underlying loyalty to the idea of Europe. There is no single authority that anybody respects or understands. That is causing this massive democratic void.”

A group of concerned British ex-pats and Israelis has launched a public campaign to encourage pro-Israel Britons to “vote leave” in the upcoming EU Referendum. The “Support-Israel — Leave Europe” website focuses on four major reasons why Zionists should oppose the EU and seek to weaken it by encouraging Britain to leave.

The Thursday, June 23 referendum will decide whether Britain should leave or stay in the European Union. Prime Minister David Cameron promised to hold the referendum if he won the 2015 general election, seeing as so many in his own Conservative party, as well as the UK Independence Party (UKIP), argued that UK voters had not been asked since 1975—when they voted to stay in the EU—whether or not they thought this was still a good deal for them. And since the EU has changed tremendously since then, controlling every European citizen’s daily lives, Cameron announced: “It is time for the British people to have their say. It is time to settle this European question in British politics.”

The Brexit (combination Britain and Exit) camp believes the UK is being held back by the EU, which imposes too many rules on business and charges billions of pounds a year in membership fees with little in to show for it (Britain has held on to the Pound, unlike everyone else in the union who have switched to the euro, whose value is being controlled in Brussels).

The Brexit camp wants Britain to take back full control of its borders and reduce the number of people coming over to work. One of the main principles of EU membership is “free movement,” which means citizens of all EU countries don’t need to get a visa to go and live in other EU countries. And, as Boris Johnson has put it so eloquently, citing historic examples, the anti-EU British object to the “ever closer union” and the move towards the creation of a “United States of Europe.”

The Bank of England on Thursday warned that a vote for the UK to leave the European Union would hurt the economy and send the pound sharply lower, MarketWatch reported. The central bank said the “most significant risk” to its economic forecasts concern the so-called Brexit referendum on June 23.

“A vote to leave the EU could materially alter the outlook for output and inflation, and therefore the appropriate setting of monetary policy. Households could defer consumption and firms delay investment, lowering labor demand and causing unemployment to rise,” the BOE said in a statement accompanying its decision to keep its key rate at a record low of 0.5%. The BOE also said the pound is likely to depreciate further, “perhaps sharply,” in case of a vote to leave the EU. The pound has dropped 9% since its November peak, half of which reflects the risks associated with the referendum, the bank said, noting that “there are increasing signs that uncertainty associated with the EU referendum has begun to weigh on activity.”

Nevertheless, Conservative Party MP Iain Duncan Smith, who served as Secretary of State for Work and Pensions until March 2016, defended Johnson’s “historical parallels,” saying, “He talked about this nonsensical idea of trying to drive these different countries [together]. It’s a historical fact of life that if you go through Napoleon, Hitler, everyone else … I think the whole process of trying to drive Europe together by force or by bureaucracy ultimately makes problems.”

The Financial Times Brexit “poll of polls” shows 46% of UK voters want to stay in the European Union, while 43% would like to leave. However, the most recent poll, conducted on May 8 on a sample of 2,005 likely voters, showed almost the reverse picture: 46% want out, 44% prefer to stay, 11% are undecided.

JNi.Media

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/former-london-mayor-compares-eu-to-napoleon-hitler-ahead-of-june-23-brexit-referendum/2016/05/15/

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