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December 3, 2016 / 3 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘racism’

Boulder Prep School Students Expelled for Calls to Execute Jews [video]

Wednesday, October 19th, 2016

Five Boulder Prep High School students in Colorado were expelled over their Facebook hate group, where they were calling for the executions of Jews and Blacks, The Daily Camera reported last week. Local media report that Boulder police discovered the Neo-Nazi cell after one of the member had committed suicide “to show allegiance to the Nazi party.” Police is investigating reports of threats and harassment of a student at the high school by the group members.

The chat group was reported by a parent of one of the students. The group’s “second-in-command” told police, “the whole thing was ‘funny,'” assuring them he had no intention to actually do any of those things.

“It was a shock to the community,” Scott Levin of the regional Anti-Defamation League told CS in response to the revelations. “It isn’t as if there is any identifiable group [in Boulder] that is advocating this. There’s a lot of hateful rhetoric going on in this country right now, and that has just empowered some teenagers.”

An estimated 15 students participated in the “4th Reich’s Official Group Chat” on Facebook, according to a Boulder police report, which said members discussed “killing all Jews and N***s,” posted images of guns, and discussed “the final solution” and “white power,” and ways to “recruit more members” to complete their mission. The chat group’s “4th Reich” title is a reference to a successor to Adolph Hitler’s Third Reich. In fact, the chat group’s leader identified himself as “The Fuhrer,” and members adopted Nazi military titles.

One entry went: “You can hang Jews on trees, shoot them right in the knees. Gas as many as you please,” according to the police report.

Lili Adeli, headmaster at Boulder Prep, told Daily Camera the school had addressed the suicide and the Facebook chat’s horrifying language. “We did a lot of work with the students to help ensure their safety and mental health and healing,” she said. “It can bring up their own thoughts of suicide and previous trauma.” This includes checking on students via the phone, including text messages outside of school hours. “We’ve continued to keep the lines of communication open,” she said.

Adeli also stressed that school staff have made it their top priority to educate students on inclusiveness and the importance of speaking out against “derogatory language.”

JNi.Media

Accusing Israel Of Racism Will Backfire On Us All

Sunday, September 18th, 2016

Israel is a country accused of many things by many people. Personally, I find it most painful when the accusation is that of racism and when the accusers are fellow Jews. Sadly, this is what is happening in the course of a PR campaign that started with the best of intentions.

In 2015, the government of Israel passed a cabinet decision to facilitate the immigration of a number of Ethiopian citizens with family relations in Israel and with claims of Jewish lineage. Many of these Ethiopians had attended educational institutions run by the Jewish Agency or by American NGOs and, as a result, developed a strong attachment to Israel and to Judaism.

These Ethiopians were found not to be eligible for aliyah under the Law of Return, which requires that one be born to at least one Jewish grandparent, but in view of their family ties to Israelis and their humanitarian plight – stuck in limbo between the lives they had left behind in Ethiopia and the lives they aspired to live in Israel – it was decided to bring them to Israel and grant them full rights as olim.

When months went by and the decision remained unimplemented, a petition began to circulate calling on the prime minister to make good on his government’s pledge (something the Israeli government has since begun to do). The petition, circulated by Dr. David Elcott, was a model example of the compassion and concern for the suffering of others that embodies the best of Jewish tradition. The distress and frustration of these Ethiopians and their sincere desire to join their relatives in the Jewish state are very real and deserving of our urgent attention.

But then things took an ugly turn. Some of the campaign’s advocates began insinuating that the campaign for the Ethiopians in question was a campaign against racism and that the racists were Israeli officials. These advocates compared their campaign to the civil rights movement against Jim Crow laws in the U.S. and to the Black Lives Matter movement. In particular, they targeted young American Jews with these messages – meeting with Birthright groups before their first trip to Israel and leading them to believe that the only difference between the Ethiopians in question and Russian olim (even those who are not Jewish according to halacha) was the color of their skin.

In order to create the false impression of racism, these advocates concealed the fact that this last group of Ethiopians, unlike the Ethiopians who made aliyah in the heroic operations of the 1990s, did not meet the criteria of the Law of Return. They stated that their campaign was necessary to prevent Israel from discriminating against people on the basis of their skin color. Many leaders they spoke to came to believe the delay in the implementation of the decision from 2015 was indeed informed by racism.

As is so often the case, an initiative launched to promote a just and worthy end was before long compromised by wrongful means. In this case, the end of hastening the government decision from 2015 is just and worthy. The means of wielding the accusation of racism to intimidate the state of Israel and American Jewish leadership is unforgivable.

I must confess a personal reason for finding this tactic so objectionable. As I told The Jewish Press in an interview earlier this year (“At The End of the Day, We Only Have Each Other,” June 24), in the 1960s my father came from Africa to Israel, making it his one and only home. He converted to Judaism and served in the army.

My African heritage is an important part of who I am and I have always been very proud of it. I have not often encountered racism, but when I have, it has made me angry beyond words.

Because I care a great deal about genuine manifestations of racism, I am revolted by the use of the language of the struggle for racial justice as a casual rhetorical flourish or as a PR foil.

As a Jew, I would bristle if I were to see someone using false accusations of anti-Semitism as a means to promote their end. It discredits and undermines our struggle against true appearances of that age-old hatred. Equally, as an African I am furious to see false insinuations of racism exploited in what could otherwise be a noble campaign for a deserving cause.

But there are two more important reasons why this move is so deplorable.

First, painting Israel as tarnished by racism alienates young American Jews who care strongly about racial justice. There are enough groups out there trying to drive a wedge between Jews in America and Jews in Israel without Jewish leaders acting to the same effect.

Second, this tactic plays right into the hands of those haters who regularly accuse Israel, and by extension all Jews who identify with Israel, of being racists.

The infamous UN resolution equating Zionism with racism has long been repealed, but that perverse calumny is still alive and well.

When a Jewish leader gives an interview to an international news agency and implicitly attributes systemic racial bias to the Jewish state, it can only be a matter of time before his words will be hurled back at Jewish students on campus, exhorting them to renounce any attachment to the Jewish state.

Playing this game may yield some results in the short term for the campaign, but its harm is tenfold and will come back to haunt us all.

Shimon Mercer-Wood

The Jay Shapiro Show – Antisemitism in New Form [audio]

Thursday, September 15th, 2016

Antisemitism is protean in that it takes many forms and grows like a bad weed in all kinds of soil. The latest manifestation is called “ethnic cleansing” which means that peace cannot come to the Middle East until Jews are prohibited from living in their ancestral homeland.

The Jay Shapiro Show 13Sept2016 – PODCAST

Israel News Talk Radio

Jewish UK Labour Peer Threatens to Quit If Corbyn Re-Elected

Wednesday, August 10th, 2016

Jewish Labour Peer of the Realm Parry Mitchell is threatening to quit the party if Jeremy Corbyn is re-elected as leader.

Mitchell, a member of the House of Lords and former frontbencher under Ed Miliband, slammed the recent internal Labour inquiry into racisim and anti-Semitism led by Shami Chakrabarti.

In a letter to the editor of The Times of London published Wednesday morning, Mitchell called the inquiry — which concluded the party was not “overrun” by anti-Semitism — “insipid whitewash.”

The report found an “occasionally toxic atmosphere” against Jewish members of the party, but that anti-Semitism is not prevalent among the rank and file. British Jews have harshly criticized the report.

Mitchell wrote: “As a Jew, I find the allegations of anti-Semitism in the Labour Party very distressing. Even more upsetting is the way Jeremy Corbyn dismisses what he has permitted to fester at the highest levels of our party.

“I had hoped that the Chakrabarti Report commissioned by Corbyn would get to the bottom of allegations of antisemitism: sadly Ms. Chakrabarti produced an insipid whitewash. Indeed, she seems to have done her master’s bidding to absolve the party of blame. Her prize? The only Labour peerage awarded by Mr. Corbyn.

“Anti-Semitism has no part in a progressive party. I have come to the painful conclusion that were Mr. Corbyn to be re-elected next month, then I will have to resign my membership of the Labour party. I cannot remain a member of a party that goes against such a crucial issue that I hold dear.”

Numerous of prominent Labour Party members were outed by a British political muckraking website for their anti-Israel and anti-Semitic jabs over the past two years.

Among those forced to apologize for his venom was UK Labour politician Muhammed Butt, the Lead for Equalities at London Councils who shared a clip on social media that appeared to show a young girl from the Palestinian Authority in a clash with an Israeli soldier. The clip was captioned: ‘Israel is a terrorist state like ISIS.’

Butt was outed by the UK-based Guido Fawkes political website, which is credited with tracking down and exposing numerous other anti-Semitic posts by British politicians as well

Jeremy Corbyn is being challenged for leadership of the party by Owen Smith. The results of the election are to be announced on Sept. 24.

Hana Levi Julian

Netanyahu ‘Not Prepared to Tolerate Racism in our State’

Monday, August 1st, 2016

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday night received the conclusions and recommendations of a team that studied eradicating racism against Israelis of Ethiopian origin. Netanyahu received the report from Justice Ministry Director General Amy Palmor, who headed the inter-ministerial team on eradicating racism against Israelis of Ethiopian origin.

The team was established by the Prime Minister following a decision by the special ministerial committee on advancing the integration into Israeli society of Israelis of Ethiopian origin, which he chairs. The ministerial team is convening Monday to discuss the report and, most likely, approve its recommendations.

Prime Minister Netanyahu said after receiving the report, “I am not prepared to tolerate racism in our state. I am not prepared for people to be tripped up by the color of their skin. This is terrible. We, on the ministerial committee, have heard heart-rending and hair-raising stories and we started to take action against racism even beforehand. But now, in the wake of this report, which is part of our decisions, we will take further steps and I am pleased that there are people, men and women, who are determined to uproot this phenomenon from our lives. This befits neither our country, our citizens nor our people.”

The report is 170 pages long and includes 52 recommendations intended to help correct institutionalized and societal racism. It says: “For years, those of Ethiopian descent have experienced discriminatory treatment from Israeli institutions and citizens, exclusion from the public sphere, discrimination in education and employment, stigmatization and negative stereotypes, and have even been exposed to physical and verbal abuse.

“Claims by those of Ethiopian descent of institutional and police racism, and alternatively, of the forgiveness of the heads of institutions for such displays, have been heard throughout the team’s work. At this point, we have the obligation not to miss the opportunity to heal the rifts. Wide implementation of the recommended steps in this report is intended to provide the conditions required for zero tolerance for expressions of discrimination and racism.”

The report details the scandals related to the mistreatment of the Ethiopian-Israeli community in recent years, including the healthcare system’s practice of destroying blood donated by Ethiopians, injecting Ethiopian women with contraceptives without their consent, segregated maternity wards, segregating students in educational institutions, a lack of recognition of Ethiopians’ Jewish roots by the religious establishment, the use of Tasers against Ethiopian-Israeli Yosef Salamsa who later killed himself, the police assault on the soldier Damas Pakada, and Israel’s failure to retrieve Avra Mengistu, who crossed the border into Gaza.

JNi.Media

New Study: Alarming Spike in Campus Anti-Semitism in 2016

Tuesday, July 26th, 2016

Nearly 100 more incidents of anti-Semitism occurred on campus during the first six months of 2016 compared with the first six months of 2015, according to AMCHA Initiative’s mid-year study released today. In addition, calls for Israel’s elimination on campus tripled, and that expression highly correlated with actions that harm Jewish students.

“The growing problem of campus anti-Semitism is no doubt a serious threat facing the Jewish community, but this disturbing and dangerous spike and the bolder, more brazen, methods of those perpetrating this hate are particularly alarming,” cautioned Tammi Rossman-Benjamin, AMCHA Initiative director and co-founder.

The study, which examined anti-Semitic activity from January to June 2016 on more than 100 public and private colleges and universities with the largest Jewish undergraduate populations, found that 287 anti-Semitic incidents occurred at 64 schools during that time period, reflecting a 45% increase from the 198 incidents reported in the first six months of 2015.

The study also revealed the following disturbing trends:

Suppression of speech approximately doubled from 2015 to 2016. In 2016, 14 incidents that restricted Jewish students’ civil rights by suppressing their speech, blocking their movement or hindering their assembly were found on 12 campuses. These incidents reflect a significant increase from the first half of 2015, in which eight incidents of suppression occurred on seven campuses.

Expression denying Israel’s right to exist nearly tripled from 2015 to 2016 and correlated with actions intended to harm Jewish students. The first half of 2016 saw an almost three-fold increase in the number of campus incidents that contained expression opposing the existence of Israel, a recognized form of anti-Semitism by global leaders such as President Obama, Pope Francis and the prime ministers of Canada, Britain and France and the world’s preeminent scholars of anti-Semitism. There were 43 such incidents in 2016 compared to 15 during the first half of 2015. In fact, expression opposing the existence of Israel highly correlated with conduct that targeted Jewish students for harm.

Divestment resolutions are fueling anti-Semitism. In 2016, the student governments of 10 schools in the study considered anti-Israel divestment resolutions. Of these 10 schools, eight showed the largest increase in anti-Semitism from 2015 to 2016. Conversely, seven of the nine schools in the 2015 study that considered or voted on divestment resolutions showed a marked decrease in anti-Semitic activity in the first half of 2016 when no divestment resolution was considered. The two schools that did not decrease in anti-Semitic activity hosted discussions and votes on divestment.

Anti-Zionism, particularly Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) activities, anti-Zionist student groups, and faculty boycotters, remain the strongest predictors of anti-Semitic incidents on campus. Consistent with 2015, this study revealed that anti-Semitism was twice as likely to occur on campuses where BDS was present, eight times more likely to occur on campuses with at least one active anti-Zionist student group such as SJP, and six times more likely to occur on campuses with one or more faculty boycotters. In fact, schools with more faculty boycotters and more BDS activity tended to have more incidents of anti-Semitic activity.

Schools to watch in 2016: the schools with the largest increase from 2015 to 2016 are Columbia University, Vassar College, University of Chicago, NYU, University of Minnesota, University of Massachusetts (Amherst), University of Wisconsin (Madison), University of Florida and the University of Washington.

“Instead of just boycotting Israel, the anti-Zionists are now boycotting Jewish students,” stated Professor Leila Beckwith, AMCHA co-founder and one of the study’s lead researchers. “Sadly, all too often it is not debate but hate. The lines between political discussions on Israeli policy and discrimination toward Jewish students are being blurred. Anti-Zionists are attempting to harm, alienate, and ostracize Jewish students; it is Jewish students’ civil rights that are being trampled. To properly address this rise in anti-Jewish bigotry, universities must adopt a proper definition of contemporary anti-Semitism and use it to educate the campus community about the distinct line between criticism of Israeli policies and discrimination against Jewish people.”

The report concluded with recommendations for university administrators including (1) adopting a definition of anti-Semitism that identifies all forms of anti-Jewish bigotry, including when criticism of Israel crosses the line into anti-Semitism; (2) allocating resources to educate students and faculty about contemporary forms of anti-Semitism and anti-Jewish discrimination; and (3) establishing clear guidelines about free speech protected under the First Amendment and conduct which violates others’ civil rights, including disrupting or shutting down campus events and restricting free speech and right of assembly.

Read full copy of today’s report.

JNi.Media

Global Forum on Anti-Semitism This Year in Buenos Aires

Sunday, July 17th, 2016

For the first time, the Global Forum on Anti-Semitism (GFCA) traditionally held biennally in Jerusalem is taking place this weekend (July 16-18) in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The conference this year is organized by the Hispanic Israel Leadership Coalition (HILC) subsidiary of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference; the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs; and the Latin American Jewish Congress, the regional chapter of the World Jewish Congress.

Anti-Semitism is rising around the world, and this year’s conference is focused on creating an action plan to respond to the attacks on an international level.

On Monday forum participants are slated to attend a ceremony marking the 22nd anniversary of the bombing of the AMIA Jewish Center in Buenos Aires. The attack was suspected to have been perpetrated by Iran via its Lebanon-based terror proxy Hezbollah. In that attack 85 people lost their lives and hundreds more were injured.

“The first GFCA in Latin America presents a unique opportunity to discuss the issue of anti-Semitism in Latin America and develop an action plan that would complement the one drafted at the last GFCA in Jerusalem in June 2015,” the HILC said in a statement.

The New York-based Anti-Defamation League (ADL) sent experts to the conference to participate in a panel discussion on best practices in tackling cyberhate – the spread of anti-Semitism online.

ADL resources which have been translated into Spanish and Portuguese are being presented during a session on identifying and opposing cyberhate and community safety online.

“With the advent of various social media platforms, and the volume of pernicious content, no continent is immune to the growing phenomenon of online hate,” warned Jonathan Vick, ADL Assistant Director for Cyberhate Response.

Hana Levi Julian

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/global-forum-on-anti-semitism-this-year-in-buenos-aires/2016/07/17/

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