Friday, July 31, 2015

Austria: Blood libel still commemorated

Via Der Standard:

Every year, around July 12th, dozens of people come to the village of Rinn (Tyrol), to commemorate the 'martyr' Andreas Oxner.  Oxner's murder in the 15th century was blamed on Jews and in the 18th century he was proclaimed a saint.

Up until the 1970s, the blood libel was still taught in local schools as fact.  In the 1980s-1990s his worship was officially banned, but it still continues in private capacity.

Among the participants are traditional Christians (the antisemitic Catholics from the Society of St. Pius X always participate) and neo-Nazis.

According to the mayor, local participation is mostly older people and so hopefully will die out in the upcoming years.

Belgium: Anti-Israel petition attracts 435 signatures - no counter-petition is forthcoming

A petition in Belgium calling for the academic and cultural boycott of Israel has attracted 435 academic signatories.  It was launched by Prof. Herman De Ley of the University of Ghent who is not Jewish and is, like many Europeans, a passionate Israel-basher.  Quite a few Jews supported the petition. It is part of the BELGIAN CAMPAIGN FOR AN ACADEMIC AND CULTURAL BOYCOTT OF ISRAEL (BACBI).

This is stark contrast with the fact that not a single non-Jewish/Jewish academic has launched a petition countering the pro-boycott petition.  It is doubtful that there will be one in the future.  And if there was one it is fair to assume that not many people would be bothered to support it.  Obviously there is no campaign to support Israel.

As to antisemitism in Europe.  It is an established fact that antisemitism has become a problem and that many Jews, seeing no future for them and their children, are leaving the continent. You would be at pains to find a book on contemporary antisemitism written by a non-Jewish intellectual, with the notable exception of Pierre-André Taguieff, Douglas Murray, Denis MacEoin, Ed West, Guy Millière...  There is the occasional newspaper article condemning antisemitism, but little attention is paid.   And nothing changes.

Again, in contrast, there is in Europe what can be called an "industry" producing a large number of books, articles and studies depicting Israel as a racist, apartheid country.  The contrary, of course, does not happen.

Germany:Frankfurt Book Fair hosts publishers inciting hatred and violence against Israel.

 The Simon Wiesenthal Center has been monitoring antisemitic texts at the Frankfurt Book Fair for 12 years.  And the same happens every year.  Sadly, European Jewish organisations do not react!

The Algemeiner reports:

“The Palestinians and the Loss
of the Forbidden,” by Imad
Sayid Ahmad, was deemed an
antisemitic text by
the Simon Wiesenthal Center.
Jewish human rights group the Simon Wiesenthal Center criticized the Frankfurt Book Fair on Thursday, urging organizers of the 2015 event to blacklist publishers inciting hatred and violence against Israel.

“These stands become focal points for imams visiting with their Koranic school classes,” the organization said in a released statement. “These hateful titles can serve as a low-tech instrument for recruitment of youth to jihad.”

The Center gave authorities behind the Frankfurt Fair a list of 56 “merchants of hate” and which countries they are from. Twenty hailed from Egypt, 19 from Syria/Lebanon, nine from Jordan/Palestinian, five from Saudi Arabia, two from Kuwait, one from Morocco, and one Arab publisher was from the United Kingdom.  The numbers were based on 251 antisemitic titles that the SWC monitored at book fairs around the world – 80 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; 67 in Abu Dhabi; 53 in Muscat, Oman; 35 in Doha, Qatar; and 16 in Casablanca, Morocco.

The Center said the “Worst Offender” award goes to a publisher Dar-al-Kitab al-Arabi of Egypt, which published 78 of the 251 books identified as antisemitic.

“These, tip of the iceberg findings, are a minimal indication of the problem, as their stands become focal points for local and foreign Imams who bring their Madrassa school classes with them. These hateful titles, can serve as a low-tech recruitment instrument for youth to Jihad,” said SWC Director for International Relations Dr. Shimon Samuels. “In Riyadh, some 420 titles were removed by the ‘Religious Police as contrary to Islam…’ yet the conspicuous number of volumes inciting to violence against Jews were left in place.”

“There is no doubt that many of them – and especially, Dar al-Kitab al-Arabi of Egypt – deny and trivialize the Holocaust, which is a crime under German law,” Samuels said. “This publisher has an obsession with Henry Ford’s International Jew The Protocols of the Elders of Zion and Hitler’s Mein Kampf – none of which can be excused as ‘anti-Israeli rather than anti-Jewish.”

The Simon Wiesenthal Center has been monitoring antisemitic texts at the Frankfurt Book Fair for 12 years and last year ranked antisemitic literature that was on display at the event, listing Qatar as “Worst Offender 2014.”

The Center also monitored the 2015 book fairs in Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi. In March they lamented U.S. support of the Muscat International Book Fair, which SWC described as a “hothouse of antisemitic hate,” and in April slammed Morocco’s culture minister for failing to stop the display of anti-Jewish texts at the 2015 Casablanca Book Fair.

Sweden: Swedish Democrats politician shares antisemitic conspiracy theories

Via Nynäshamns-Posten:

Urban Medin, a Swedish Democrats politician in Nynäshamn, shares antisemitic conspiracy theories on his Facebook page, says Jonathan Leman of Expo Magazine. Such posts say the Jews control the banking industry and blame them for everything, including WWII.

Expo Magazine follows up on various racist organizations.  Leman says that Medin follows various White Supremacy groups and is friends with many antisemites.

Medin says he's not antisemitic, that he doesn't read or agree with everything he shares and that he doesn't think he should exclude antisemitic groups from his reading list.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Germany: Activists organise yet another Gaza flotilla

Yaakov Lappin and Benjamin Weinthal @ Twitter

Sadly, German activists organize a Gaza flotilla right now, not one European/Turkish flotilla on its way to Yemen in spite of children going hungry in Yemen.

Benjamin Weinthal a retweeté Yaakov Lappin
Sadly, German activists organize a Gaza flotilla right now, not one European/Turkish flotilla on its way to Yemen
Benjamin Weinthal added,

France: UMP politician speaks of "the Jews and the French"

Via Le Monde Juif:

Valérie Pécresse, a French politician and former minister for Sarkozy's UMP party, recently indicated that Jews (and Muslims) are not really French.  Speaking to Muslim leaders, she said that on the issue of places of worship and religious schools, Muslims should receive what the "Jews and French" receive.

Sweden: Jewish family assaulted

Via Radio Sweden:

A Jewish family from Örebro reported the municipal housing company ÖrebroBostäder to the Discrimination Ombudsman.

The family says that their neighbor assaulted them, said antisemitic statements and threatened them with a knife.  The housing company referred them to the police, but the family says that's not enough.

Germany: "Some Germans are so over antisemitism they’re over the existence of Jews"

Via Heeb Magazine:
But earlier this week it became known that local neo-nazi groups were apparently planning attacks on Jewish athletes. Of course, you might say, it’s what neo-nazis do. And yet, Silke Burmester, a columnist for the biggest leftist daily taz and previously a blogger for Spiegel Online, was struck by something: the very existence of a Jewish sports festival.

On Twitter she wondered what the hell a “Jewish sports festival” is supposed to be and whether Jews had their own Olympic games since 1936. (Answer: kinda, which sort of comes with being banned from other sports associations.) Not satisfied with that she later tweeted, after having watched a news report, what “Jewish sports” is supposed to be – swastika-throw? (Maybe we should be grateful that she didn’t go with coin-tossing.)

Other people voiced similar concerns i.e. were antisemitic and complained about the exclusionist and chauvinist and racist nature of such an endeavour. Some couched that in a general atheist critique of religion, others said that Jews just want to exclude the goyim.

In Germany, people are always very puzzled when they encounter Jewishness not as creed but as secular culture or, Gott bewahre, ethnicity because they think that kind of thinkings lead to the Nuremberg laws. And Jews expressing their Jewish identity beyond religion will often hear they should get over it and not harp on differences.
And in fact when called out Silke Burmester said she just wants to live in a world without ethnic and religious assignments.

So there you have it: some Germans are so over antisemitism they’re over the existence of Jews.

UK: 53% increase in anti-Semitic incidents (due to better reporting)

In other words, the situation hasn't worsened, it was this bad to begin with.

Via Jerusalem Post:
A 53 percent increase in the number of anti-Semitic incidents in Britain during the first six months of 2015 can be ascribed to greater communal awareness of the problem coupled with better reporting, the Community Security Trust reported on Thursday.

There have been 473 reported incidents this year, compared to 309 for the same period last year, and 223 in the first half of 2013.

Despite the rising trend, the figures do not come close to the 629 incidents reported in 2009 – the year in which most of the fighting in Operation Cast Lead (against Hamas in Gaza) took place.

The CST monitors anti-Semitism and provides security for Britain’s Jewish community.

In its latest survey, it noted that there were 44 incidents of violent assaults, two of which they classified as “extreme violence” causing grievous bodily harm, or a threat to life. Thirty-five of the reported incidents involved damage or desecration to Jewish property. Thirty- six incidents were direct anti-Semitic threats.  more


France: Thieves leave message "Dirty Jew. Long Live Palestine"

Le Parisien reports that the flat of  a Jewish couple at Bondy (Seine-Saint-Denis) was burgled and an antisemitic incription left on the bedroom wall. The intruders used a lipstick to write "Dirty Jew. Long Live Palestine". 

The Jewish pensioners had left on July 23 on a four-day holiday to Turkey when they received on their smartphone a message emanating from their alarm indicating that their flat had been broken into.  

A relative in France was also alerted and went to the flat with the police.  The burglars had gained access by breaking the kitchen window.  They rummaged through the flat and stole jewelry, shoes, fashion accessories and perfumes. A complaint for burglary aggravated by antisemitic insults was filed with the police.

Alain, who is 70, explained that the couple suffered a real trauma.  They have lived in the flat since 1974 but want to leave the area because they no longer feel safe.  Their own children and grand-children do not want to visit them there.  The couple was burgled last May and as a consequence installed an intruder alarm system.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Ireland: Guinness World Records fears Israel

Via Times of Israel:
Preparing 15 tons of hummus should suffice to earn the world record for the largest hummus plate, Oren Rosenfeld thought.

But when the 39-year-old Israeli organizing the record attempt contacted Guinness World Records, they declined to send an adjudicator to Israel, citing security concerns.

“When everything was set in time and place, I decided it was time to contact Guinness,” said Rosenfeld. “But that’s when it started to get complicated.”

A Guinness official responded via email to his inquiry in early July that they “wouldn’t be able to provide an official adjudicator to attend the record breaking event in Israel” because of a “security warning.”


Guinness World Records, meanwhile, denied Rosenfeld’s claim, saying they “refused to accept” his position that his world record bid had been refused.

Sweden: "Jews here know that as soon as their identity is known they’ll suffer insults, threats and violence"

Via Haaretz:
Tsubarah was born in Malmo to a Swedish mother and an Israeli father. Her father Amnon came to Sweden in 1980 and opened the country’s first falafel restaurant to great enthusiasm. Back then the Jewish community numbered more than 2,000 people, compared with 400 now.

“Jews here know that as soon as their identity is known they’ll suffer insults, threats and violence,” Tsubarah says.

In her family’s first anti-Semitic experience, someone sprayed the family car with the slogan “Go home Jew pigs.” Then she and her six brothers were cursed in school hallways or in their neighborhood.

“In my high school 80 percent of the students were Muslim, and they would say: ‘Wait and see what happens when we catch you,’” she says. “My brother was severely beaten because he was Jewish. When he complained to the police nothing happened.”   more

Belarus: Cemetery vandalized

 Via CFCA:
Barysaw - Local Newspaper ex-Press reports that in July 2015 vandals desecrated 19 gravestones in the Jewish cemetery in the city of Barysaw. Some of the gravestones cannot be restored. The case on cemetery destruction was transferred to an inquiry commission at borysowski area. The investigation continues

Austria: Antisemitism at "Campus of religions" in Vienna

Via Watch Antisemitism in Europe:

Six different religions have built the so called "Campus of religions" in ‪ ‎Vienna‬.

 Each of them were represented by a flag.  Last Thursday the Jewish flag was torn down and daubed with a swastika.

Read more (in German) @ Der Standard (23/07/2015)

Germany: Novel about young woman from Berlin making aliyah

Via Watch Antisemitism in Europe:

The German author Mirna Funk is about to release her first novel "Winternähe" in which she describes a young Jewish woman from ‪#‎Berlin‬ who is about to do aliyah to ‪#‎Israel‬.

She also describes an everyday level of antisemitism which the author took from her own experience. Read more (in German) @ Die Welt.

On the same topic:
France: Bestselling French-Jewish author contemplates move to Israel 
and about a successful alyah:
Norway, Israel and the Jews blog (2013):
A year of being an olah chadashah

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Russia: Jewish Scholar Fleeing ‘Nazi-Like Atmosphere’ of Putin’s Russia

Via The Interpreter (h/t glykosymoritis):
Ilya Frank, a Jewish linguist whose approach has defined how Russians study foreign languages for more than a decade, has decided he and his family must leave Moscow for Israel because of what he describes as “a Nazi-like atmosphere” there, one he quickly identified because of his familiarity with German writings and films from the 1930s.

In an interview posted online yesterday with Dmitry Volchek of Radio Liberty, Frank, 52, says he decided to leave “in the first instance” for political reasons because he did “not want to life in a country where 90 percent of the population is infected with the virus of self-love and hatred to others.”

“I am leaving because of the Nazi-like atmosphere which has emerged in Russia and in which it is very unpleasant to live,” Frank says. He doesn’t have a television and works at home but when he does go out, he sees “the slogans, hears the conversations, and sees what books are being offered at major bookstores.”

Because he is “by education a German instructor,” he continues, he has “read many German books about the 1930s in Germany, watched documentaries, and listened to Goebbels in the original” and thus can “see parallels and this is very unpleasant,” especially because his six-year-old daughter will be entering school next year and would be exposed to all that.

Frank rejects the argument of Vladislav Inozemtsev that Russia today is more like Mussolini’s Italy than Hitler’s Germany, and that of Maksim Frank-Kamenetsky that there is no anti-Semitism in Russia. While Russia now may resemble fascist Italy, he says, it also has “undoubted parallels” with Nazi Germany, including the language of its leaders.

And while there is less state-sponsored anti-Semitism in Putin’s Russia than in Hitler’s Germany, there is ever more exploitation of and even promotion of anti-Semitic themes by those close to the regime such as Archpriest Dmitry Smirnov who invariably stresses the Jewishness of what he sees as Russia’s opponents. That sends a message to those ready to hear it.   more

France: Paris synagogue members threatened with Kouachi brothers treatment

JSS News reports:

Saturday afternoon, after attending Shabbat prayers, at a synagogue in the nineteenth arrondissement, the congregation gathered for a "seuda" (snack) in the courtyard. The synagogue is located in a residential building at the Darius Milhaud street.  Two residents, referred to as "French" went down allegedly to "casser du Juif" (trash the Jews).

"I am going to finish the job of the Kouachis" yelled a resident on the first floor (another witness says he said  "the Kouachi brothers were right").  The other neighbour threw a bottle beer to the ground.Congregation members were surprised.  They indicated that they had laughed while eating hummus and drinking a small glass of alcohol, but had avoided being too noisy so as not to inconvenience neighbours.When they talked about the Kouachi brothers young Jews reacted, said a source to JSSNews. The two attackers were not expecting to be confronted by ten to fifteen young people who are no longer prepared to bow their heads.  A fight ensued until the police arrived.

"Anti-Semitic acts are a daily occurrence in the nineteenth arrondissement", explained JSSNews' source. "They now come to our synagogue. We young Jews can not accept this. We never hurt anyone, we are never a nuisanced. We behave as discreetly as possible. But from now on, we are not going to let acts like this pass".

Germany: "Fucking Jew" shouted at Jew wearing a kipa

Via Watch Antisemitism in Europe:

The new "Department for Research and Information on Anti-Semitism" (RIAS) reports that an 55 year old wearing a kipa has been verbally assaulted. The incident happend on May 5th.

He was on his way leaving the metro station "Görlitzer Bahnhof" in ‪#‎Berlin‬ as one younger man shouted "Fucking Jew" towards him. The victim ignored it and walked away. No passers-by reacted.

Most antisemitic incidents are not reported.

Poland: Christian youth movement teaching blood libels

A game spreading an antisemitic story about sacramental bread desecration was banned by Poznan’s Archbishop. It was found that two churches in Poznan are spreading antisemitic story according to which Jews desecrated the sacramental bread in 1399. To this day, frescos in these churches present this event that has no historical evidence.

The Church of the Holy heart of Jesus (Najświętszego Serca Jezusa) in Zydowska Street, has a well in which, according to the story, Jews sunk sacramental bread. Some people believe that water flows from the well has healing power.

 Recently, those two churches become stops in a municipal children's game which was conducted by a religious youth movement. The game aroused opposition from Zbigniew Fakola from the organization "the town of Poznan." He wrote an open letter which was posted on the media.

Switzerland: 20 antisemitic thugs attack Charedi Jew in Zurich

A 20-strong group of right-wing extremists attacked an Orthodox Jew in Zurich on the evening of July 4th. They made the Nazi salute and shouted antisemitic slogans at him.

 The tattooed leader of the group spat on the man, in his mid 40’s, in the face and pushed him. It was only when alerted by passersby that the police intervened. A Metropolitan Police spokeswoman confirmed the incident, which is under investigation.  more

Europe: Understanding antisemitism to understand anti-Zionism

Daniel Robert Krygier
Daniel Robert Krygier writes @ The Times of Israel blogs:

Anti-Zionists tend to react with indignation at any hint of accusations of anti-Semitism. This is understandable, since anti-Zionists view themselves as spearheads against racism and injustice. How can they possibly be anti-Semites when some of their “best friends” are Jews? Let us ignore that these “Jewish friends” constitute a tiny minority of world Jewry and their supposedly “Jewish identity” is mainly manifested through their opposition to anything Jewish, especially a tiny sliver of land on the eastern Mediterranean known as Israel.[...]

Anti-Zionists weep while watching Schindler’s List and commemorate the Holocaust, while warning that Israel is committing “genocide” against Gaza and threatening humanity. Never mind that unlike the Jews of Europe, the population of Gaza has quadrupled — to a large degree due to continuous infusion of cruel Zionist humanitarian aid, food and health care. Math was never the anti-Zionists’ strong subject in school.   [...]

Anti-Zionists often feel misunderstood and their hobby vilified. Their ideological ancestor, the German journalist Wilhelm Marr felt the same way. Like today’s anti-Zionists, Marr denied that he was a Jew-hater, a term that he considered unsophisticated and rather crude. Instead, he rebranded his hobby in 1879 as “anti-Semitism”, which gave it an aura of supposed science and respectability.  More.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Greece: "The Jews are once again being used as scapegoats"

Via Politico (h/t glykosymoritis):
I ask Sefiha about what it’s like to be a Jew in Crisis Greece more generally. According to a May 2014 survey by the U.S. Jewish group, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), Greece is the most anti-Semitic country in Europe — and indeed the most anti-Semitic country outside the Middle East — with 69 percent of the adult population falling into what it described as “the anti-Semitic category.”

He pauses. “I believe that Greek people hold anti-Jewish stereotypes in large numbers, but they have this stereotype without knowing any Jews. So sometimes when I tell people my name they ask what sort of name that is; I say ‘Jewish’ and they say, ‘but you don’t look like a Jew’!’”

“Parts of The Orthodox Church,” he says, “and I stress only parts, play a role in this. It helps to keep negative stereotypes of Jews alive. In some Sunday sermons the Jews are still a very convenient scapegoat.”

And have things worsened in the crisis? I ask. “I have noticed it, yes,” he replies. “The Jews are once again being used as scapegoats. Sometimes our leaders have to complain. Even [Panos] Kammenos [the Defence Minister and Leader of the Independent Greeks party who govern in coalition with Syriza] went on TV and said that Jews don’t pay taxes. You can prove such statements aren’t true but by then the damage has already been done.”

They love this topic in Greece: ‘the Jews are behind everything; they have the economic power; they are pulling the strings.’ Some of the more extreme media outlets will claim that previous Greek prime ministers are Jews. They’ll snap a photo of one visiting Yad Vashem and wearing a Kippah and say ‘see he is a Jew.’”

Could the type of anti-Semitic violence seen in France come to Greece, I ask. He is sceptical. “In France you have an Islamic element that we don’t have in Greece, but here we have Golden Dawn, which is undoubtedly a Nazi party. And it’s the third largest party in the Greek parliament, believe it or not.”

Israel: Arson, swastikas target Jerusalem synagogue


Via Artuz 7:
Congregants at the Pitchei Olam synagogue in central Jerusalem were shocked to find the site desecrated when they arrived for prayers early Thursday.

Vandals set fire to the curtain that hangs in front of the Holy Ark, where the scrolls of the Torah are housed, and scrawled swastikas and anti-Jewish epithets around the building.

EU labelling is bad for Israelis and Palestinians and double standards

Irwin Stelzer writes @ The Times

The Germans are angry with the Greeks for retiring at the age of 50 and counting on Germans to keep working until they are 65 so as to have enough cash to lend to Greece. The French are angry with the Germans for demanding such harsh and humiliating terms from the Greeks in return for a few billion more euros. The Greeks are angry with the Germans for once gain in effect telling them how to levy taxeds and to organise their economy.  Italy is angry with every other EU country for refusing to relieve it of the flood of refugees fleeing Africa.  Britain is angry with the entire EU for denying it the right to control its borders and snatching from it large portions of its soverignty.

On one thing they all, or almost all, agree: products made in "occuupied Palestinian land" must be labelled as such. Some 16 foreign ministers have written to Federica Mogherini, the EU foreign policy chief, calling for action before year-end.  [...]

Britain, in the person of its prime minister, is leading the charge, ignoring the potential for mayhem it will created, helped along by France, which has forgotten the deli killings and which history suggests already has much to answer for when it come to its treatment of  Jews.  More.

Note: The letter was signed by the Foreign ministers of Austria, Belgium, Britain, Denmark, Finland, France, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Slovenia, the Netherlands.

In the meantime, the JPost reports that Italian PM Matteo Renzi "hailed ties between his country and Israel and railed against “stupid” boycotts in a speech to the Knesset Wednesday. Renzi described his personal excitement at visiting Jerusalem, calling it a “secular pilgrimage.”"

Federica Mogherini was Minister for Foreign Affairs in Mr. Renzi's government.

France: Shop slurs, among others, Jewish clients

They couldn't not insult Jews, could they?

The Local reports:

France's data protection watchdog CNIL, which was alerted by a complaint, has reprimanded the nationwide appliance store Boulanger after it emerged staff were secretly insulting clients when storing their personal details. The store workers may have been polite to their customers' faces but once their backs were turned they let loose. 

An investigation by CNIL into a Boulanger store in the south east of France revealed that when staff stored clients information on computers for future use, they weren't always the kindest and indeed were often racist.  Indeed CNIL remarked that files on customers contained what it referred to "excessive" comments about the clients and went on to publish a few examples.

The 5,828 insulting comments found by CNIL read like a dictionary of French insults.

"Connasse" (bitch), "client chiant" (annoying/boring customer), "trés con" (very stupid), "n'a pas cerveau" (brainless), "grosse connasse qui se croit tout permis" (huge bitch who thinks anything goes), "casse couille" (ball breaker), and "folle" (crazy) were just a few examples given by CNIL.

Others suggested racism or personal jibes about people's health. "Juive" (Jew), fort accent africain (strong african accent), problème cardiac (heart problem) and alcoolique (alcoholic) were just a few of the more sinister ones published by the watchdog.  More.

Ukraine: Media claims antisemitic demonstration is Russian provocation

Whether this was a 'real' antisemitic demonstration or a 'fake' one, as the Ukrainians claim - the Jews are the victims.

Via Human Rights in Ukraine:
A fake anti-Semitic demonstration in Lviv on Wednesday was ugly and dangerous, not least because it highlighted the ease with which such stunts can be orchestrated and the inability of the authorities in a democratic country to intervene.  The local media fortunately reacted with some inconvenient questions and close attention to money changing hands. 

On July 22, around 100 people appeared outside the Lviv Regional Administration building and unfurled banners with anti-Semitic messages against the present government.  One big banner gives the supposedly ‘real’ names of Ukraine’s leaders, claiming that this “Jewish fraternity is selling off Ukraine”, another: “No Jews in power”.    more

France: Museum Whitewashes Le Corbusier's Anti-Semitism

Via The Forward
Le Corbusier — the Swiss-French master of modernist architecture — was a fascist sympathizer who had an office in Vichy during the Second World War and displayed anti-Semitism in his private correspondence. But an exhibition currently running at the Centre Pompidou in Paris, “ Le Corbusier: Mesures de l’homme, ” won’t tell you any of this.

The revelations about Le Corbusier’s political beliefs have come to light in books published this year — 50 years after his death — including “ Le Corbusier, un fascisme français ” by Xavier de Jarcy and François Chaslin’s “ Un Corbusier. ” These studies of archived material sparked a national debate in France over the architect’s legacy and exposed the connection between Le Corbusier, anti-Semitism, fascism and the Vichy regime.


Need it be said that a man with such close ties to fascism had none-too-savory views about Jews? As early as 1910, he wrote to a friend to discuss installing “smoking rooms for fat Jews.” In August 1940, in correspondence with his mother, Le Corbusier wrote, “money, Jews (partly responsible), Freemasonry, all will feel just law.” He wrote of 1943, which came during the period of mass deportation of Jews from France to the extermination camps of the East, as “a year in which nothing special happened.”

“ Le Corbusier: Mesures de l’homme ” does not touch on any of this. It chooses to present the architect’s development and evolution within the artistic and architectural context of the age. Le Corbusier, the exhibit claims (in a purple and near-incomprehensible language that only exists, and indeed thrives, in art galleries), “drew on the organic laws of human perception and cognition to define the principles of a multi-faceted creativity at the origins of modernism.”  more

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Russia: Beauty queen calls to burn Jews

White pride, Confederate flags, Nazi symbols, the works.

Via the Daily Mail:
A beauty queen has been stripped of her 'Miss Charming' title in Russia after images appeared online that led to allegations she was a neo-Nazi.

Olga Kuzkova, from Moscow, sparked controversy after pictures on her social media accounts were widely distributed on the internet.

One image tweeted by the 21-year-old shows a woman dressed in a maid's outfit posing in front of two flaming ovens, with a caption that calls for the burning of Jews and 'khachi', a derogatory term for natives of the Caucasus.

Another image shared on Russian social media site VKontakte showed her extending her right hand in a Nazi-style salute, while standing in front of racist graffiti.  more

Russia: Judge fired for anti-Semitic post

Via Artuz 7:
A district court judge from Russia's Udmurtia republic was dismissed from his post this week for posting an anti-Semitic remark on Facebook two years ago.

At the time, Ivan Orsinin uploaded a picture of a burning mosque to his Facebook page with the following caption: You can look endlessly at three things: flowing water, sparkling stars and a burning mosque."

In a comment below the picture, the judge added "and the Jews burning,"
an anti-Semitic statement that also has clear Holocaust overtones. more

French government's moves creating anti-Semitism

It should be underline that a fair number of the French elites referred to in this article are Jewish, be it in the media, in  successive governments, in universities, in NGOs, in BDS campaigns etc. One doesn't hear them when Israel is slammed and many happily join in. 

Guy Bechor writes @ YNet News:

If anyone needed a reminder, prestigious American magazine Vanity Fair published a huge heart-rending feature about the situation of anti-Semitism in France. It isn't happening during the Holocaust or during the Dreyfus trial, but now. 

Being identified on the French street as a Jew means taking a risk of physical violence, and even a life-threatening situation. It means entrenching oneself as a collective and hiding one's personal identity.  

The article reveals that the community of half a million Jews is considering its future in the country: It is a community which is packing its bags. "When did we become foreigners again?" local Jews are asking painfully. They, who were born in France, are now perceived as foreigners, while the Muslim immigrants feel right at home there.

Some will say that anti-Semitism in France does not come from the top, but is the result of the settlement of millions of Muslims in the country or of the old European anti-Semitism. But this claim is only partially true: The French government cannot deny its responsibility for the fact that its finest citizens are planning to leave the country.  [...]

The French government is responsible for the situation due to its clear pro-Muslim and pro-Palestinian policy, as well as the traditional hostility towards Israel (regardless of the identity of the ruling party). The moment they didn’t stop the public attacks on Israel, the street interpreted it as permission to attack the Jews – as there is no longer a distinction between them. "Death to the Jews" is the slogan being shouted during conflicts and pogroms in Paris, like what happened less than a year ago.  [...]

The French government cannot have it both ways: Level poisonous criticism and diplomatically press Israel while claiming that it is fighting anti-Semitism. These moves against Israel are the ones creating anti-Semitism.  More.

UK: At Westminster, anti-Israel MPs scrape the barrel's bottom

Via Daphne Anson:

Nicholas Soames
Nicholas Soames (pictured), the pompous and visibly well-fed Tory MP of privileged background, who's reportedly not beneath making obnoxious  sexist comments and gestures to women members of the House of Commons, has long been an Arabist foe of Israel

Now, this grandson of Sir Winston Churchill, son of the late Cabinet minister and life peer Christopher Soames,  and chum of Prince Charles, has hastened to put his name to an "Early Day" motion in Parliament to the following effect:

"That this House condemns the abysmally low proportion of non-Jewish, African asylum seekers who have been granted refugee status in Israel; notes with concern that less than one per cent of applications by African refugees are successful; further notes that Israel's closest neighbours, Jordan and Lebanon, have each accepted millions of refugees fleeing Syria; commends the work of Hotline for Refugees and Migrants Israel, and the Assaf Aid Organization for Refugees and Asylum Seekers in Israel in promoting African refugee rights in Israel; and calls on the Government to demand immediate action from the Israeli government to behave in line with international legal norms and obligations."
What some people will stoop to in order to kick Israel, huh? [...]

Since he's been described as the "most sexist" MP, perhaps he could make amends by introducing motions condemning the abuse of women and girls in various Islamic countries.

But wait! It seems from this BBC report that Soames believes that the UK should restrict immigration in its national interest (strange, then, that he has the chutzpah to expect Israel to do differently!):
'Mr Soames had blamed the previous Labour administration for its "chaotic, ill-thought out and deeply irresponsible approach to immigration".
Under its watch, he said, the UK had witnessed "the greatest wave of immigration... in nearly 1,000 years".
The popularity of the petition, which calls for "all necessary measures" to be taken to ensure the population stays "well below" 70 million and has been signed by more than 143,000 people, had provided a "clear indicator of the very grave public concern about the scale of immigration to this country", Mr Soames added.
Although immigration was a "natural and essential part of an open economy" with some benefits, there were pragmatic causes for concern, he said.
He told MPs: "In the coming 15 years we will have to build, just for new immigrants and their families, the equivalent of eight of the largest cities outside London... together with all their associated social infrastructure, of schools, roads, hospitals, railways, and all the rest."'
See also here. 

Will Europe put an end to Hizballah’s operations on Its soil?

The Lebanese terror group continues to operate in Europe despite warnings from the EU. What will Brussels do about it?

Daily Beast via Mosaic Magazine:

Last week, Hussein Bassam Abdallah pled guilty to involvement in a terrorist plot in Cyprus, where he was hiding 8.2 tons of ammonium nitrate intended for attacking Israeli and Jewish targets on the island and smuggling the remainder to Hizballah operatives throughout Europe. Matthew Levitt cites this as evidence of how little has been accomplished by EU’s July 2013 ban on Hizballah’s military wing but not on the organization in general:

Not only did Hizballah actively maintain an explosives stockpile in Cyprus, the group retained the operatives, infrastructure, and reach to engage in operations across Europe. Over the course of the time Abdallah maintained this explosives stockpile, Hizballah remained active across Europe, from a 2012 bombing thwarted in Greece to the arrest and deportation of a Hizballah operative in Denmark in 2013 who arrived on a commercial ship for purposes still unknown. . . . 

Germany’s domestic intelligence agency recently reported that Hizballah maintains some 950 active operatives in the country. . . .

When the EU banned Hizballah’s military wing, French foreign minister Laurent Fabius pledged, “There’s no question of accepting terrorist organizations in Europe.” Now, as Europe marked the third anniversary of the July 18 Hizballah bus bombing in Bulgaria, there is abundant evidence that Hizballah is doing just that: engaging in terrorist activities in Europe.

In other words, the EU banned part of Hizballah and warned it to cease activities in Europe, and Hizballah promptly called Brussels’ bluff. Which leaves us with a question for Fabius: will the EU accept a terrorist organization operating in Europe?  More.

UK: In Britain, "People are scared to talk about Palestine"

Via Daphne Anson:

Ever wondered what rain in London looks like?  Well, here's your chance to find out.  Courtesy of virulent anti-Israel stalwart Alex Seymour aka Seymour Alexander, footage of umbrellas, wet "Boycott Israel" banners, and pedestrians in raincoats and plastic macs scurrying by.

The most interesting part of this footage? Right at the end, when a rather handsome older gentleman hoves into view.  If only we could hear what he's saying to the assembled little group of (very familiar) Israel-haters.  According to Mr Seymour's intemperate introduction on YouTube:

"The shadowy guy at the end of the video was insistent that we were in league with terrorists but from his Israeli accent I would guess that he was probably in much closer contact with terror gangs ( of the IDF death squad variety ) than we were ever likely to be."
(Some people tell me Seymour's Jewish, btw.)


Saturday, July 25, 2015

Holland: Damage to Israel caused by lack of morality by European officials, including the Dutch government

While I was on a speaking and book promotion tour of the Netherlands, the Dutch Foreign Minister, Bert Koenders, was on an official visit to Israel.   During his visit, Koenders instructed his embassy to find a way to express the close relations between his country and the Jewish State. He also voiced his country’s opposition to BDS. 

While cultural exchanges would be a good start, a more affirmative Dutch action against massive diplomatic injustice and damage being caused to Israel in international forums would be far more valuable than an occasional exchange of artists.

Much of this damage is caused by a total lack of morality by European officials, including the Dutch government.   Let me explain.  During my public speeches, I listed egregious cases of cynical Dutch diplomatic decisions that reflected far worse against Koenders’ government than against Israel.

Recently, the Dutch government decided to cut the pension of a 90 year old Holocaust survivor who left Holland to spend her last days with her children and grandchildren in Israel. The reason given for this pension cut was that this lady’s family lived just over the Green Line and not, according to Koenders’ government, in Israel proper. In a talk I gave in the Anne Frank Hall of the Jewish Liberal Center in Amsterdam, I pointed out that, had she survived, that lady could have been Anne Frank. This act was disgracefully shameful from a Dutch government with an appalling record toward its wartime Jews. That it would, today, continue to punish a Dutch Holocaust survivor over its grievance or difference of opinion with the Israeli government is shameful. Victimizing a 90 year old Jewish woman is not way for any liberal democracy to behave.  The shame goes on.

In my talks, I mentioned a recent United Nations vote on children in war zones that condemned only Israel. With a horrendous vote of 104 nations it called Israel the worst violator of children’s rights. Only four voted correctly in defense of Israel. They were the United States, Canada, Australia and Israel.  Notice the total lack of European nations. Not one European country had the moral commitment to say that this decision was wrong. Not one European nation had the morality to vote against that motion, including a Dutch government that so often projects itself as the high moral authority when it comes to Israel.

This pattern was repeated when the World Health Organization named Israel as the worst violator of health rights. Again, no European nation had the courage to object to such a heinous charge. Holland, like all the other cynical European nations, chose to abstain rather than stand for truth and justice. More.

Friday, July 24, 2015

For European Union officials Israeli activity in the “occupied West Bank” is illegal, yet facilitate Turkish activity in occupied N. Cyprus and Moroccan activity in occupied W. Sahara

Evelyn Gordon writes @ Commentary on the EU's double standards with regard to Israel:

Responding to today’s Times of Israel interview with Fatou Bensouda, prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, legal expert Eugene Kontorovich tweeted, “you got to ask #Bensaouda questions & didnt ask about an inquiry into settlements in Cypru[s]?” But Bensouda could actually offer a reasonable response to this challenge about double standards. The people who couldn’t – and who should therefore be hounded about it at every conceivable opportunity – are senior European Union officials who insist that any facilitation of Israeli activity in the “occupied West Bank” is illegal, yet happily facilitate Turkish activity in occupied Northern Cyprus, Moroccan activity in occupied Western Sahara, Chinese activity in occupied Tibet, and much more.

Just today, Reuters revealed that an influential European think tank is urging the EU to go beyond its current drive to label Israeli settlement products and impose numerous additional sanctions, from restricting interaction between European banks and Israeli banks that do business in the settlements (i.e. all of them) to refusing to recognize degrees from Israeli educational institutions in the West Bank. The European Council of Foreign Relations is technically an independent organization, but, as Reuters correctly noted, its “proposals frequently inform EU policy-making.” In 2013, the council proposed five different measures against Israeli activity in the West Bank; two years later, three of the five have been largely adopted, either by the EU itself or by individual member states: excluding settlement produce from EU-Israel trade agreements, severing contact with Ariel University (which is barred from the EU’s Horizon 2020 research program) and advising European companies against doing business in the settlements.

But as Kontorovich has pointed out repeatedly, the EU has no qualms about facilitating activity in other territories that it deems occupied. For instance, the EU has an entire program to direct funding to Turkish-occupied Northern Cyprus; inter alia, the program finances infrastructure projects, scholarships for students and grants to businesses. And lest one think this is equivalent to EU projects to help Palestinians, think again: Turkish settlers, who constitute anywhere from 20 to 50 percent of the population (depending on whose estimates you believe), are eligible; nor is the program barred from funding projects that directly or indirectly benefit these settlers. That’s in sharp contrast to the West Bank, where European countries refuse to fund any project that might benefit Israeli settlers, even if it benefits the Palestinians far more.

Similarly, Kontorovich noted, the EU reached an agreement with Morocco in which it actually pays Morocco for access to fisheries in Moroccan-occupied Western Sahara. In short, the EU is paying the occupier for the right to deplete the occupied territory’s natural resources.

And, of course, numerous European companies and organizations do business in such territories; from French conglomerates like Total and Michelin to British universities. More.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Belgium: Unmoderated antisemitic comments in on-line newspaper

Background: Belgian soccer team faces punishment over fans' anti-semitism and Hitler salutes and anti-Semitic slogans at football match

Jules Dieu writes:
"Hamas is fighting the Zionist invader like Belgian and French resisters
fought the Nazi invaders between 40 and 45."

Below is the translation of some of the comments following an article in a Belgian on-line news outlet (Sud Info) reporting on the behaviour of Beitar's fans but without a single hint at violence by Belgian football fans. Readers' reactions perfectly reflect what many Europeans are led to think about Jews, "Zionists", Israel etc.  The hatred and disgust reach fever pitch:

"What a bunch of whores."

"Mind you.  They will say it's the fault of Charleroi football fans.  They pretend that what is happening in Gaza is somedy else's fault."

"Netanyahu has pledged that there will be an inquest.  We know that their inquests are worthless."

"[The Beitar fans] are typical Netanahu's voters: racist and violent! this is yet another lie by a dangerous populist! Roll on the international tribunal and lock him up for his war crimes! Boycott Israeli products in the supermarkets: carrefour, colruydt, Delhaize and spar!!!!"

"Hamas is fighting the Zionist invaders like Belgian and French resisters fought the Nazi invaders between 40 and 45."

"They are wild beasts and should be isolated and lock[ed up]."


"They are little turds who think they are clever when they band together.  But when they are on their own they run away because they are traitors and have no balls."

"I can't understand the way Jews, who have suffered so much, behave towards the Palestinians.  They are keeping them in huge ghettos!  History is repeating itself!"

"This filth [Beitar players] are hate-filled just like those who murder Palestinian children.  The day when everybody will acknowledge this things will get better.  Let's not forget that terrorism is a result of injustice.  And terrorism will be fed for as long as there is injustice.  It's ugly but that's the way thing are."

"Like the murder of children who were playing on a Gaza beach?"

" I say choananas." [Shoananas is a song by French commedian Dieudonné poking fun at the Holocaust.  It means Holocaust Pineapples.]

Belgian soccer team faces punishment over fans' anti-semitism

 See also: Hitler salutes and anti-Semitic slogans at football match
Charleroi fans
 Arutz Sheva 7 reports

The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) is likely to take punitive measures against the Belgian Charleroi soccer team over the anti-Semitic behavior of its fans at last week’s game against Beitar Jerusalem, Channel 1 News reported on Tuesday.

According to the report, UEFA will summon group ownership for a hearing after Charleroi fans taunted Beitar fans at the game with Nazi salutes and anti-Semitic and anti-Israeli chants.  Some radical Beitar fans at the game responded by throwing smoke flares onto the pitch. Charleroi's goalkeeper was struck in the head by what Belgium press reports said was a bolt thrown by Beitar fans. Beitar ultimately lost the game, 5-1.

UEFA has already indicated it would fine Beitar over the behavior of the fans but, according to Channel 1, the fine to Charleroi will likely be higher than the one to Beitar due to the anti-Semitic nature of its fans’ behavior, and might even include the team’s dismissal from the league.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said following last week’s incident he would launch a probe into a the behavior of some of the Beitar fans.

Beitar Jerusalem owner Eli Tabib announced after the Thursday Europa League match was halted in Charleroi that he was "ashamed" by the conduct of an "extremist group of fans" and intended to sell the team.
MK Yoel Razvozov (Yesh Atid), the head of the Knesset's sports caucus, has asked Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein to examine the legality of the La Familia group of Beitar fans due to its involvement in the incident in Belgium.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Sweden: Death threats against Jews

Via Watch Antisemitism in Europe:

A man in ‪#‎Skillingaryd‬ says he received a neo-Nazi text message threatening to kill Jews. The message included lyrics from a song by the Nazi band Varulven, crude pictures as well as pictures of the Ku-Klax-Klan and a man with a knife. According to Jönköpings-Posten, several people have received such text messages. Read more (in Swedish)

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Germany: Good Germans don't spend a penny on Zionist ice cream

Via Watch Antisemitism in Europe and Jutta Ditfurth:

With last week's wave of heat some unintentionally hilarious post from the Nationalist Party of Germany (NPD) in ‪#‎Trier‬ came along.

They asked their followers to be "critical ice cream eaters" by resisting the longing for some nice little ice cream by Ben & Jerry's and Häagen-Dazs, because good Germans don't spend a penny on the "zionist ice trust". Not kidding. Well, we hope their tongues get stuck on some "Flutschfinger". More Ben & Jerry's for us! Read more (in German):

EU to reemphasize decision to start “full and effective” labeling of goods from Jewish settlements

The EU is incapable or sorting out its problems (mass unemployment, poverty, mass immigration, Greek crisis, French social unrest, rise in populist parties etc) but can't stop meddling and interfering in Israel internal affairs.

The Jewish Press reports:

In a few months, the EU will enact its plan to label products made in the Jewish towns and villages of Judea, Samaria and east Jerusalem, the Financial Times reported Sunday.

Apparently, over the past three years, the European Commission has delayed issuing proper technical guidelines on the labeling of the Jewish-produced goods, fearing that the move would “backfire” over in Israel.

But now, according to the report, the EU has decided to put aside pressing issues such as the collapsing economies of Greece, the Ukraine, Spain and Portugal, and focus its efforts on issuing a directive which Brussels “insists is a purely administrative document.”

David Walzer, Israel’s ambassador to the EU, described the initiative as “a European attempt to politically pressure Israel on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict by using economic means of questionable legality.”  Walzer argued the labels are an attempt by “to de facto determine the boundaries of Israel while it is up to the parties involved to decide,” and warned that “nothing good or constructive can come out of going down that road.”

But the EU foreign ministers, slated to meet in Brussels on Monday, are planning to reemphasize their decision to start “full and effective” labeling of goods from Jewish settlements. This is in accord with a letter signed in April by 16 foreign ministers, including France and the UK, telling EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini to make clear that products from Jewish settlements are illegal.

The EU has prepared measures making it possible to track postal codes, to make sure goods shipped from Jewish settlements do not enjoy duty-free status under the EU free-trade agreement with Israel.  More.

UK: Labour leadership candidates clash at Jewish community hustings

The Jewish Chronicle reports:

The Labour leadership candidates have outlined their positions on Israel in a packed hustings with the Jewish community.

Andy Burnham, Yvette Cooper, Jeremy Corbyn and Liz Kendall appeared at the JW3 community centre at an event organised by Labour Friends of Israel and the JC.

Three quarters of the session focussed on Israel, with questions on boycotts, the current Israeli government, West Bank settlements and the 2017 centenary of the Balfour declaration.

Mr Corbyn was asked about previous comments in which he had referred to Hamas and Hizbollah terrorists as "friends".  He told the packed audience that he had spoken of Hizbollah using the term during a welcome to a number of groups he had invited to speak in Parliament. 

WATCH AGAIN: Labour Party Leadership Hustings LIVE STREAM

The backbencher suggested he would back a boycott of goods from Israeli settlements in the West Bank, but that he would oppose an academic boycott of the country.

But Mr Corbyn did not directly answer a question from Community Security Trust communications director Mark Gardner about his leadership of the Stop the War Coalition and its support of the anti-Israel Quds Day rally. Mr Gardner described the event as a "festival of hate". [...]

In his closing statement, Mr Burnham railed against the damage done to the party's relationship with the Jewish community in the past five years.

"How did it get to this for Labour and the Jewish community, that it feels so alienated from the Labour Party?
This cannot carry on," he said.  Ms Kendall said that the event's focus on matters relating to Israel showed how "damaged" the relationship had become.  More.

Europe: No other community has received such universal hatred as the Jewish communities of Europe and the Middle East

Denis MacEoin writes @ Gatestone Institute: The NGO campaign to destroy Israel

For centuries, almost no other religious or racial community has received such universal hatred or been subjected to such high levels of hypocritical double standards and persecution as the Jewish communities of Europe and the Middle East. Today, the obsessive focus on Israel is a simple reanimation of these classic hatreds. It is manifestly anti-Semitic in nature, yet dozens of NGOs that claim to be opposed to racism are happy to employ it.

Readers who want to gain a broader picture of how this anti-Israel discrimination works for NGOs can do no better than to consult the many articles and press releases of NGO Monitor, an Israeli information, legal advisory and advocacy organization established by Gerald Steinberg, a professor of political science at Bar Ilan University. NGO Monitor is the most crucial resource for the media, the international community and for anyone who needs to know about the frequently anti-Semitic charges levelled against the Jewish state -- whether "war crimes," "apartheid," or ethnic cleansing.

What is significant is not so much the evident hatred of Israel expressed by some NGOs, as that so many of them are heavily funded by foreign governments or foreign institutions. [...]

It should come as no surprise to learn that Israel's efforts to curb unregistered foreign agents -- NGOs that together receive tens of millions of dollars every year, primarily from Europe -- have been, and are, condemned as "undemocratic." This charge is usually levelled despite the fact that no country would tolerate undue interference in its internal policies by other states, beyond a very limited and truly humanitarian level.  [...]

There is no need to look at these funding bodies here, but it should be clear that a wide range of church organizations, human rights NGOs, and a number of European governments are engaged in an extremely one-sided enterprise to bring about the defamation and destruction of the Jewish state. The report also brings these organizations and individuals in line with the many anti-Israel groups that engage in the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement, and in daily propaganda hostile to Israel.  More.

Op-Ed: Iranian Nuclear Deal Is a Win for Anti-Semitism

Taken from Rabbi David Wolpe of Time Magazine:
This is no time for celebration

I suppose all hatred has an element of irrationality. Yet some hatreds are more irrational than others. For thousands of years, hatred of Jews has been unique.
Sometimes acts of hatred, such as confiscating Jewish wealth or property, served utilitarian purposes for rulers or mobs. But often nations deliberately wounded themselves and their prospects by expelling Jews, persecuting them, and killing them.

I write these words in the eternal city of Rome, where Jews were confined to a ghetto, a tiny space where the Tiber river often flooded, forcing them to periodically escape by boat until they could return to their moldering, crowded homes. As the population grew, they had to build up because they were not allowed a square inch more space. Jews were permitted to have one synagogue, and it, too, had to be subdivided to accommodate different customs. It was less than 150 years ago that Jews were finally permitted to live elsewhere in Rome.

If you think this has nothing to do with the Iran nuclear deal, then you are in good company. Here is President Barack Obama, speaking to Jeffrey Goldberg of the Atlantic magazine:

    And so I think it is not at all contradictory to say that there are deep strains of anti-Semitism in the core regime, but that they also are interested in maintaining power, having some semblance of legitimacy inside their own country, which requires that they get themselves out of what is a deep economic rut that we’ve put them in, and on that basis they are then willing and prepared potentially to strike an agreement on their nuclear program.

I dearly wish it were so. Having never lived in Iran, I still offer my own life as counter-evidence. Fully half of the membership of my congregation in Los Angeles are Persian Jews. The vast majority came to the U.S. after 1979, when Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi fell and Grand Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini took over. They left not only because of the summary execution of a respected philanthropist and leader of the community, but because it was increasingly clear that confiscation and brutality were replacing the shah’s regime of tolerance. As a result, many of the best and brightest of Iranian society—doctors, business leaders, even government officials, left or were hounded out. Listening to their stories, it’s clear the degree of self-inflicted damage the Iranian regime did is astonishing.

It would be a better world if anti-Semitic regimes put aside their hatreds to pursue their vital interests, but history militates against that illusion. You don’t need to invoke the famous and egregious example of Nazis diverting precious resources, trucks, and other war materials, in order to keep transporting Jews to the concentration camps. You don’t have to recall how some Nazis busily executed Jews even as they ran from the conquering allied troops. You can invoke Vichy, France, turning over the Jews who were its best and brightest, or the Soviet Union, which lost so much cultural and business acumen and capital through years of suppression. Anti-Semites cannot help themselves. To them, the injury is worthwhile if they can savage the Jews.

Monday, July 20, 2015

UK: Pro-Israel group ejected from festival due to violence by pro-Palestinian group

Bournemouth Action For Israel, a pro-Israel organization, came to the Tolpuddle Festival.  The festival is organized by the Trade Unions Congress in celebration of trade unionism. 

In short, they were harassed and attacked until the festival organizers told them they'll have to leave for their own safety.  (h/t halevia)

The Palestinian Solidarity Campaign, which has had the trade unionists all to themselves for the past few years, quickly discovered our presence and that was the start of the less-than-welcome reception.

In succession, the volunteers were accused of representing a fascist, racist, oppressive, apartheid, baby killing, subjugating, land-stealing state and that we had no right to be at the festival. In forthright manner, we were informed that serious complaints would be lodged to the organisers with a view to having us ejected. A flash mob suddenly converged on us from the direction of the PSC stall, shouting abuse, throwing our leaflets to the floor and trying to destroy our stand.

Needless to say, when each organisation was invited to explain what it was there for, our leader was greeted by well orchestrated boos and jeers. Having fully anticipated just such a reaction, he calmly asked them if they would like another minute or so to vent their anger. When things quietened down, he was able to inform the hall that our organisation represents a Pro-Israel, Pro-Palestinian, Pro-peace viewpoint and if we could not have civilised dialogue here in England, what chance was there for it to happen in the Middle East.

After these initial rabid outbursts, the volunteers were encouraged to hear from other stallholders and officials that we had every right to be there and although they did not agree with what Israel was doing, we should be free to put over our point of view.

Today, we arrived very early to ensure we would be there before the PSC and as we were in the process of setting up our stand, we received a visit from the organisers. They explained to us that this was going to be the busiest day of the event and that they were short staffed on security. In view of the many virulent complaints they had received about us, and although we had every right to be there, we should leave in the interest of our own and their staff's safety.  more

Germany: Jewish cemetery desecrated with Nazi graffiti


Three tombstones in the Jewish cemetery in Laatzen were spray-painted with green Nazi graffiti.