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December 8, 2016 / 8 Kislev, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘The New York Times’

First Jewish Members Appointed to Germany’s Nazi Looted Art Panel

Sunday, November 13th, 2016

Gary Smith, former director of the American Academy in Berlin, and Raphael Gross, director of the Simon Dubnow Institute for Jewish History and Culture in Leipzig, have been appointed by German Culture Minister Monika Grütters as the first Jewish members of the Limbach Commission, established in 2003 to mediate in Nazi-looted art ownership disputes, The Art Newspaper reported.

The commission surprised the art world in 2014 when it concluded that the sale of the $250 million Guelph Treasure, a 40-piece trove of Medieval goldsmith works, which had been forced out of several German-Jewish art dealers from Frankfurt by Prime Minister Hermann Göring, “was not a compulsory sale due to persecution.”

And last March, Grütters faced shocked protests after telling the New York Times that if a Jew is appointed to the commission his “would be the only voice who would be prejudiced.” Needless to say, it didn’t play so good in New York City.

Minister Grütters is also introducing an increase in transparency to the workings of the commission, including a promise to publish its schedule and the reasons for its decisions. She also instituted a ten-year limit on members’ terms in office, and she plans to authorize the generation of provenance reports when necessary, paid for by the government. Chancellor Angela Merkel’s cabinet approved the reforms last week.

“I expect all German museums without exception to be willing to subject disputes to the Advisory Commission as a matter of course,” Grütters said. Unlike its Dutch and Austrian equivalents, the German Nazi Loot commission can only be called if both sides of a dispute agree.

David Israel

Clinton Slams Staffer Sidney Blumenthal’s Anti-Zionist Son’s Putdown of Elie Wiesel

Thursday, July 7th, 2016

On July 5, when the rest of the Jewish and gentile world (with the exception of Islamist Jihadis) were still mourning the demise of Holocaust author and Nobel Prize Peace Laureate Eli Wiesel, Max Blumenthal, son of the senior member of the Hillary Clinton campaign Sidney Blumenthal, published a piece titled “In the face of increasingly unspeakable crimes against Palestinians, Wiesel counseled silence.” This was MB’s take—while the body was still at room temperature—on Wiesel’s statement, “I must identify with whatever Israel does—even with her errors.”

“Wiesel’s unwavering commitment to Israel undoubtedly influenced his vocal support for President George W. Bush’s invasion of Iraq,” MB wrote. “He went on to demand American-orchestrated regime change in Syria, Libya, and Iran. ‘To be Jewish in this world is to always be concerned,’ he told an audience on Capitol Hill, endorsing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s push for a US attack on Iran. Wiesel’s support for successive assaults on Middle Eastern countries—always on the grounds of defeating ‘evil’—made him a key asset of neoconservatives and liberal interventionists alike.”

MB also wrote that in July 2014, when “Israel embarked on its most lethal operation to date against residents of the besieged Gaza Strip, destroying or damaging some 100,000 homes and killing over 2,200 people, including 551 children” — apparently for no reason, “At the height of the assault, a shockingly Islamophobic full-page ad appeared in the New York Times under the banner of [Rabbi Shmuli] Boteach’s World Values Network non-profit, which has received substantial funding from [Sheldon] Adelson.”

The ad declared: “Jews rejected child sacrifice 3,500 years ago. Now it’s Hamas’s turn,” or, as MB’s Palestinians-can-do-no-wrong version went, the ad was “Hammering on the common pro-Israel myth that Palestinians do not value their children’s lives as much as Israelis do, the ad denigrated the besieged residents of Gaza as ‘worshippers of death cults indistinguishable from that of the Molochites.'” Never mind the fact that this theme of “we love death while the Jews love life” was practically a Hamas slogan that year.

It turns out that the “offensive” ad “concluded with the signature of its author, Elie Wiesel, the man who would be eulogized by fellow Nobel Prize-winner Barack Obama as ‘one of the great moral voices of our time.'”

“With Wiesel’s death,” MB noted, “the elites who relied on him for moral cover leapt at the opportunity to claim his legacy.”

Jake Sullivan, senior policy advisor to the Hillary Clinton campaign, slammed Max Blumenthal’s article, which marked a new low in demonizing Israeli and Jewish values by the American left in general and the father and son team of Sidney and Max Blumenthal in particular: “Secretary Clinton emphatically rejects these offensive, hateful, and patently absurd statements about Elie Wiesel,” Sullivan said in a statement. Referring to Clinton’s views on the anti-Israel activists who attempted to vilify Wiesel after his death, Sullivan said, “She believes they are wrong in all senses of the term. She believes that Max Blumenthal and others should cease and desist in making them.”

Well, if this means Sidney Blumenthal’s clout in the Clinton camp has lost some of its shine, too, then the entire scandal was well worth it. As Rabbi Shmuli Boteach wrote in January, “What is truly concerning is that Sidney Blumenthal has not only failed to ever condemn his son’s anti-Israel writings, but has actively advocated for and defended the warped, outrageous ideas conveyed therein.” And as Ron Kampeas wrote back in October, “Clinton takes Blumenthal seriously and likes his anti-Israel son’s work.”

David Israel

Report: J-Street Received More Than $500,000 to Promote Obama’s Iran Deal

Sunday, May 22nd, 2016

The far-left J-Street lobby, which calls itself a “pro-peace” and “pro-Israel” organization, received $576,500 dollars last year to push the Obama Administration’s Iran deal, via the Ploughshares Fund, according to an AP report.

The Ploughshares Fund, one of the main groups named by the Obama administration’s spin doctor Ben Rhodes, set its sights on other media organizations in its campaign too. Their goal, according to Rhodes was to set up an echo chamber of pro-Iran messages bouncing back and forth between different organizations and individuals.

For instance, utilizing the services of the GMMB.com ad agency, the Ploughshares Fund attempted to directly reach politically active US Jews via online advertising on Israeli and Jewish websites, with a budget in the tens of thousands of dollars.

I’m looking to run on local Jewish community sites in PA, NY, MD or run on Jewish sites that can geo-target to these states.
More information below –
Timing: Sept 5th – September 18th
Goal: Completed video views and traffic to landing page
Geo: PA, NY, MD
Budget: $5- $40k
Target: Jewish people (preferably politically active)

GMMB was particularly interested in advertising on JewishPress.com, which did not run their ads. They were even willing to prepay for their campaign.

Two other sites GMMB expressed interested in advertising on were the Times of Israel and the JPost.com.

Banner ads that ran in the various newspapers and websites appeared to be from different organizations, which then led to different pro-Iran Deal websites and YouTube channels.

The Times of Israel ran ads for an organization called “No Nukes for Iran Project“, which of course supported the Iran deal.

Ads were also run on Google.

But the underlying account name from the back-end ad server sent to JewishPress.com said “Ploughshare Fund”.

Ploughshare Fund account information for the pro-Iran deal campaign to run on Jewish websites.

Ploughshares Fund account information for the pro-Iran deal campaign to run on Jewish websites.

One such YouTube channel heavily featured Peter Beinart calling for viewers to #DefendTheDeal, under the name “Iran Deal Forum”.

"The Iran Deal Forum" promoting the Iran Deal with Peter Beinart videos.

“The Iran Deal Forum” promoting the Iran Deal with Peter Beinart videos.

The Associated Press explored the 2015 Annual Report of the Ploughshares Fund, a fund mentioned in the expose/profile of Rhodes published last week by The New York Times.

In that profile, Rhodes boasted about the main groups responsible for helping to create the “echo chamber” that promoted the Iran deal despite facts that contradicted the hype.

A fact sheet distributed this weekend by The Israel Project (TIP) managing director Omri Ceren noted The Ploughshares Fund is a donation hub that has distributed millions of dollars in recent years to groups pushing the Iran deal.

After Congress failed to defeat the deal, Ploughshares President Joseph Cirincione published a video and letter boasting about how the echo chamber – over 85 groups and 200 people – was created with Ploughshares money: “groups and individuals were decisive in the battle for public opinion and as independent validators… they lacked a common platform – a network to exchange information and coordinate efforts.

Ploughshares Fund provided that network… we built a network of over 85 organizations and 200 individuals… We credit this model of philanthropy – facilitating collective action through high-impact grantmaking – with creating the conditions necessary for supporters of the Iran agreement to beat the political odds” Cirincione said.

The Ploughshares Fund gave National Public Radio $100,000 last year towards the mission to report on the Iran deal, funding reports on related issues and NPR’s annual report. According to the mission statement of the NGO, its primary raison d’etre is to “build a safe, secure world by developing and investing in initiatives to reduce and ultimately eliminate the world’s nuclear stockpiles.”

But it was that NGO and others who were used by the White House to carry out what amounted to a deliberate propaganda campaign to mislead the American people.

In its probe of the 2015 Annual Report of the Ploughshares Fund, the Associated Press broke down into three kinds of groups, the network of 85 organizations and 200 individuals funded by the NGO:

— Journalists and media outlets:

Ploughshares has funded NPR‘s coverage of national security since 2005, the radio station said. Ploughshares reports show at least $700,000 in funding over that time. All grant descriptions since 2010 specifically mention Iran… Previous efforts… Ploughshares has set its sights on other media organizations, too. In a “Cultural Strategy Report” on its website, the group outlined a broader objective of “ensuring regular and accurate coverage of nuclear issues in reputable and strategic media outlets” such as The Guardian, Salon, the Huffington Post or Pro Publica. Previous efforts failed to generate enough coverage, it noted. These included “funding of reporters at The Nation and Mother Jones and a partnership with The Center for Public Integrity to create a national security desk.”

— Think tanks and nuclear-issues associations:

The 33-page document lists the groups that Ploughshares funded last year to advance its nonproliferation agenda. The Arms Control Association got $282,500; the Brookings Institution, $225,000; and the Atlantic Council, $182,500… Princeton University got $70,000 to support former Iranian ambassador and nuclear spokesman Seyed Hossein Mousavian’s “analysis, publications and policymaker engagement on the range of elements involved with the negotiated settlement of Iran’s nuclear program.”

— Lobbies:

Other groups, less directly defined by their independent nuclear expertise, also secured grants. J-Street, the liberal Jewish political action group, received $576,500 to advocate for the deal. More than $281,000 went to the National Iranian American Council.

Hana Levi Julian

NY Times Says Abbas Has Given Up on Establishing PA State

Friday, October 2nd, 2015

The New York Times’ editorial Thursday uncharacteristically criticized Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas and informed readers, “He has effectively given up on ever achieving a negotiated Palestinian state.”

The fact that The New York Times no longer is cheerleading Abbas is extremely significant because the newspaper and President Barack Obama often seem to be one and the same when it comes to Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

The editorial did not “balance” its disappointment with Abbas by dumping on Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

It called Abbas a “bitter man,” and added:

[He is] increasingly unpopular among the Palestinians, and the Palestinian Authority he leads effectively controls only the West Bank since Hamas seized control of the Gaza Strip in 2007. His chief preoccupation lately has been on a series of gestures, largely futile, to gain international recognition of a Palestinian state, like the official raising of the Palestinian flag at the United Nations on Wednesday.

The newspaper’s comments on Abbas’ declaration that effectively invalidated the Oslo Accords were equally condemning. It noted “that there was so little left to disown,” an implicit admission that the Accords have been eroded over the years.

The editorial did not point out the Palestinian Authority’s abrogation of clause after clause of the Oslo Accords. The most egregious violation was Abbas’ officially ditching negotiations and turning to the United Nations to recognize the Palestinian Authority as an independent country based on its own territorial and political terms.

The New York Times also wrote that it would be “foolhardy” for Abbas to cut security and economic arrangements with Israel.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Neurologist Oliver Sacks Dies at Age 82 in New York City

Sunday, August 30th, 2015

Dr. Oliver Sacks, one if whose books was turned into an Academy Award-winning movie, died on Sunday in New York City at the age of 82.

He never married. Among his cousins are Nobel Prize Winner Robert Aumann of Israel and the late Abba Eban, former Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations.

Sacks – a professor, writer and neurologist – authored more than a dozen books, including “Awakenings.” His book “The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat” helped demystify Tourette’s, Alzheimer’s.

He was professor of neurology and psychiatry at Columbia University between 2007 and 2012 and was on the clinical faculty of Yeshiva University’s Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

Dr. Sacks was born in London, from where he was evacuated during the Blitz. His best-selling books included case studies of people with neurological disorders.

After the war, he learned physiology and biology and later earned his medical degree at The Queen’s College, Oxford.

He later moved to Canada and then to the United States, where he learned neurology] and experimented with various recreational drugs, which he described in an article in The New Yorker three years ago and in his book “Hallucinations.”

Dr. Sacks was diagnosed with cancer this past January and wrote in The New York Times in February that he had “months” left in his life and wrote that he hoped the time he had left would be spent “in in the richest, deepest, most productive way I can”.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

One-Third of Americans in Israel Live in Judea and Samaria

Friday, August 28th, 2015

Approximately 60,000 Americans, one-third of those who have moved to Israel, live in Judea and Samaria, according to a new book whose conclusions were reported by Haaretz.

The Americans also comprise approximately 15% of all Judea and Samaria Jews, otherwise known as “settlers” by most of the world and “illegitimate” and “illegal” by President Barack Obama.

The conclusions of the book, “City on a Hilltop: Jewish-American Settlers in the Occupied Territories Since 1967” by Oxford University Prof. Sara Yael Hirschhorn, are not surprising to anyone living in Israel but may come as a bit of a shock to the foreign policy “experts” at the U.S. State Dept.

They also might surprise some “expert” media stars, such as Thomas Friedman of The New York Times, who once wrote that settlers are Israel’s answer to Hezbollah.

As late as last December, in a rant during the Israel election campaign. Friedman wrote:

The Israel right….is dominated by West Bank settlers and scary religious-nationalist zealots.

Hirschhorn, in her book to be published later this year, wrote:

“Something like 10 percent of American settlers in the occupied territories hold PhDs; they’re upwardly mobile, they’re traditional but not necessarily Orthodox in their religious practice, and most importantly, they were politically active in the leftist socialist movements in the United States in the 1960s and 70s and voted for the Democratic Party prior to their immigration to Israel.

So much for the “Wild West zealots” in the West Bank.

Much to the surprise of Friedman and the State Dept., Hirschhorn also wrote:

They’re not only compelled by some biblical imperative to live in the Holy Land of Israel and hasten the coming of the messiah, but also deeply inspired by an American vision of pioneering and building new suburbanized utopian communities in the occupied territories. They draw on their American background and mobilize the language they were comfortable with, discourses about human rights and civil liberties that justify the kind of work that they’re doing.

Yes, Americans in Judea and Samaria – or the occupied territories, the West Bank, or over the Green Line – are inspired by the Bible, and, no, they are not wild-eyed cowboys waiting around every bend to kill Arabs.

Her study does not cover the other 85 percent of Israeli settlers, most of whom live in Judea and Samaria for the simple reason that housing is cheaper than in most other areas and that “settlements” have clean air and are a great place to raise a family.

And some Americans, like myself, also live in the West Bank for practical reasons. When we left a kibbutz 26 years ago with three toddlers, our community in the Southern Hebron Hills was the only place close to a hospital where my wife, a nurse, did not have to work every other Shabbat.

Cheap housing is less available today in Gush Etzion, where Americans compromise a huge proportion of the population and where housing prices have soared. It used to be said that Efrat is not totally American, but on one Shabbat, it was all-American because the Israeli family went away for Shabbat.

That is no longer true, but Americans still account for approximately 40 percent of the city’s residents.

The image of the American cowboy arises because a large percentage of the minuscule number of crazies who have attacked Arabs in the past are from the United States.

The article in Haaretz on the book did not mention if Hirschhorn’s book also refers to the extremely large number of Americans living in neighborhoods in Jerusalem that the United States government and the United Nations also consider “occupied.”

President Obama does not realize how many “illegitimate” Americans live in Israel.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Obama: ‘Don’t Judge Me on Whether Deal Ends Iran’s Aggression’

Wednesday, July 15th, 2015

President Barack Obama told Thomas Freidman in an interview that he is confident Bibi will not be able to convince Congress to torpedo the agreement with Iran but also admitted that the deal has nothing to do with Iran’s aggression towards Israel.

Friedman, The New York Times columnist who is President Obama’s favorite spokesman, talked with the President for 45 minutes after the agreement was announced Tuesday.

The interview reveals inherent contradictions between President Obama’s understanding of foreign relations and his solutions for them. It shows that the President, like his predecessors, sees Israel’s security through its own eyes even though he believes he can put himself momentarily in the shoes of Iran.

He also likes to think he can pull strings that will determine how other countries will act, just like he encouraged the Arab Spring rebellion in Egypt to bring about democracy and respect for human rights, which still is waiting in the wings along with 72 virgins.

President Obama told Friedman that by helping Iran strengthen economically, perhaps – in his wishful thinking – the Iranian people will be able to influence the regime that “it’s not necessary for them to be great to denigrate Israel or threaten Israel or engage in Holocaust denial or anti-Semitic activity.”

Obama also thinks that once one of Iran’s neighboring countries is strong economically and militarily, it makes it more unlikely that Iran will attack it.

He was referring t Muslim countries. The Jewish State of Israel is a different matter.

President Obama said:

[Iran] has an authoritarian theocracy in charge that is anti-American, anti-Israeli, anti-Semitic [and] sponsors terrorism.

Hezbollah has tens of thousands of missiles that are pointed toward Israel. They are becoming more sophisticated. The interdiction of those weapon flows has not been as successful as it needs to be…

Iran is acting in an unconstructive way, in a dangerous way in these circumstances. What I’ve simply said is that we have to keep our eye on the ball here, which is that Iran with a nuclear weapon will do more damage, and we will be in a much worse position to prevent it.

That is going to be one of Obama’s loudest arguments when defending the agreement in Congress, but if he lived in Israel, he would not be so blasé about the ability of the Iranian-backed Hezbollah army to bring Israel to its knees with a massive missile attack.

The agreement may or may not stop Iran from getting its hands on a nuclear weapon, but by all accounts, it will pump $150 billion into Iran’s coffers. Not much of that money is going to be used to implement equality for women or for opening up an embassy in Israel.

By fueling terrorism, Obama is allowing himself, or his successor, to force Israel to beg for American help to prevent a threat it created, so Prime Minister Netanyahu better think twice when he tried to fight against the bill in Congress.

Obama stated:

Perhaps he thinks he can further influence the congressional debate, and I’m confident we’re going to be able to uphold this deal and implement it without Congress preventing that.

But after that’s done…we then ask some very practical questions: How do we prevent Hezbollah from acquiring more sophisticated weapons? How do we build on the success of Iron Dome, which the United States worked with Israel to develop and has saved Israeli lives?

First, he creates a greater threat to Israel be fueling Iranian-backed terror and then he wants to ask Israel how “we” can solve it.

Do you want money for an Iron Dome? Be nice. Maybe freeze settlements.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/dont-judge-me-on-whether-deal-ends-irans-aggression/2015/07/15/

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