When a Regime Leads Its People in Chants of “Death to America,” We Should Believe They Mean It

Iran FlagsThe National Interest (Feb 13) — Denying Iran nuclear-weapons capability is not only a means of limiting the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. It is also part of a broader ideological struggle that Tehran is taking much more seriously than is the United States.

This month, Iran celebrates the 36th anniversary of the return of the Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini from exile in 1979 and the advent of the Islamic Revolution. In speeches, rallies and state-sponsored television shows, Tehran is reaffirming the messages of the heady days of the downfall of the Shah, the supremacy of Shi’a Islam and the destruction of Iran’s enemies, particularly Israel and the United States. The celebration reminds us that Iran is not just a Middle Eastern adversary state with dreams of regional hegemony. It is a revolutionary regime seeking to reshape the map of the region, and the belief system of the world.

Tehran remains committed to its revolutionary agenda. Today, Iran is active in promoting its ideology in Iraq and Afghanistan. Iran supports the largest international terrorist network in the world, including backing Hezbollah and Hamas. Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen have captured vast swathes of territory and disrupted the established government. This is a revolution in action, and it illustrates that Tehran is not simply seeking to extend its influence in the region. Rather, it is working to impose Khomeini’s Shi’ite Islamist agenda beyond its borders.

Yet the White House is loathe to wage a war of ideas with Iran. Given President Obama’s well-documented sensitivities regarding Islam, his administration prefers to focus on other aspects of the effort to achieve global stability. Jihadist terror groups such as the Sunni-aligned ISIS or pro-Tehran Houthis are termed “violent extremists.” The Western rivalry with Iran is reduced to the language of power politics, ignoring the ideological dimension.

But Iran is not seeking nuclear-weapons capability simply to preserve its regime; it is also doing so to extend its revolution. When Iran can deter the use of force, it can also increase the reach of its ideas. And if Washington refuses to promote a convincing counterargument for freedom, it is unilaterally disarming.

Tehran, meanwhile, is not timid about promoting its vision in the West. In January, in the wake of the jihadist attack on the offices of the magazine Charlie Hebdo in Paris, Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei penned an open letter to the youth of the West making the case for Islam. He maintained that the view of Islam most young people receive is filtered through hostile governments and negative press reports. He asked why “attempts are made to prevent public awareness regarding an important issue such as the treatment of Islamic culture and thought” and encouraged young people to “study and research the incentives behind this widespread tarnishing of the image of Islam.” As well, Khamenei asked them to study the Koran themselves, because, he said, “the future of your nations and countries will be in your hands.” For its part, the White House is making little effort to promote the cause of freedom among Iran’s youth, even though—given the radical, repressive nature of that regime—it is likely to be a much easier idea to sell.

Focusing only on the nuclear dimension of the Iranian threat is a mistake, because the ideological conflict is the root cause of the problem. Absent Tehran’s revolutionary aspirations, there would be no drive to acquire weapons of mass destruction and no Iranian-backed global terrorist network. Arms-control agreements, verification regimes and contentious international inspections cannot guarantee that Iran is not still secretly developing nuclear weapons.

When a regime leads its people in chants of “death to America,” we should do them the courtesy of believing that they mean it.

James S. Robbins is Senior Fellow in National Security Affairs at the American Foreign Policy Council in Washington, DC.

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Terror attack in Denmark: Targeting Jews and freedom of speech

‘Forces That Want to Hurt Denmark’: Investigators Uncovering Possible Link Between Islamic State and Free Speech Event Shooter

Police investigators work at the scene of Saturday’s shooting at a free speech event in Copenhagen, Sunday, Feb. 15, 2015. Danish police shot and killed a man early Sunday suspected of carrying out shooting attacks at a free speech event and then at a Copenhagen synagogue, killing two men, including a member of Denmark’s Jewish community. Five police officers were also wounded in the attacks. (AP Photo/ Michael Probst)

Police investigators work at the scene of Saturday’s shooting at a free speech event in Copenhagen, Sunday, Feb. 15, 2015. Danish police shot and killed a man early Sunday suspected of carrying out shooting attacks at a free speech event and then at a Copenhagen synagogue, killing two men, including a member of Denmark’s Jewish community. Five police officers were also wounded in the attacks. (AP Photo/ Michael Probst)

TheBlaze (Feb 15) — Danish police shot and killed a man early Sunday suspected of carrying out shooting attacks at a free speech event and then at a Copenhagen synagogue, killing two men, including a member of Denmark’s Jewish community. Five police officers were also wounded in the attacks.

“Denmark has been hit by terror,” Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt said. “We do not know the motive for the alleged perpetrator’s actions, but we know that there are forces that want to hurt Denmark. They want to rebuke our freedom of speech.”

Jens Madsen, head of the Danish intelligence agency PET, said investigators believe the gunman was inspired by Islamic radicalism.

“PET is working on a theory that the perpetrator could have been inspired by the events in Paris. He could also have been inspired by material sent out by (the Islamic State group) and others,” Madsen said.

Islamic radicals carried out a massacre at the Charlie Hebdo newsroom in Paris last month, followed by an attack on Jews at a kosher grocery store, taking the lives of 17 victims.

At a news conference Madsen also said investigators have identified the suspect and that he is someone who had been on the agency’s “radar.” He did not reveal his identity.

Denmark’s Chief Rabbi, Jair Melchior, identified the Jewish victim as Dan Uzan, 37, a longtime security guard for the 7,000-strong community. He was guarding a building behind the synagogue during a bat mitzvah when he was shot in the head. Two police officers who were there were slightly wounded.

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu decried the attack and said his government plans to encourage a “massive immigration” of Jews from Europe.

“Again, Jews were murdered on European soil just because they were Jews,” Netanyahu said at the start of his Cabinet meeting Sunday. “This wave of attacks is expected to continue, as well as murderous anti-Semitic attacks. Jews deserve security in every country, but we say to our Jewish brothers and sisters, Israel is your home.”

Other leaders also condemned the attacks, including British Prime Minister David Cameron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and EU President Donald Tusk,

“The shootings in Copenhagen are an appalling attack on free speech and religious freedom,” Cameron said. “Two innocent people have been murdered simply for their beliefs and my thoughts are with their loved ones and all those injured at this tragic time.”

The first shooting happened before 4 p.m. Saturday when the gunman used an automatic weapon to shoot through the windows of the Krudttoenden cultural center during a panel discussion on freedom of expression featuring a Swedish artist who had caricatured the Prophet Muhammad. The artist, Lars Vilks, was whisked away unharmed by his bodyguards but a 55-year-old man attending the event was killed, while three police officers were wounded, authorities said.

The attack at the synagogue occurred hours later, shortly before 1 a.m. Sunday.

About four hours later, the shooter was confronted by police as he returned to an address that they were keeping under surveillance. Investigators described him as 25 to 30 years old with an athletic build and carrying a black automatic weapon. They released a blurred photograph of the suspect wearing dark clothes and a scarf covering part of his face.

Oliver Larsen, 26, who lives in a building above the street where the suspect was shot dead, said he was awoken at 5 a.m. by the sound of shooting.

“I looked out of the window to see what was going on and I saw a lot of policemen and a guy lying on the street; he was probably dead,” Larsen told the AP.

Vilks, a 68-year-old artist who has faced numerous death threats for depicting Muhammad as a dog in 2007, told The Associated Press he believed he was the intended target of the first shooting, which happened at a panel discussion titled “Art, blasphemy and freedom of expression.”

“What other motive could there be? It’s possible it was inspired by Charlie Hebdo,” he said, referring to the Jan. 7 attack by Islamic extremists on the French newspaper that had angered Muslims by lampooning Muhammad.

The depiction of the prophet is deemed insulting to many followers of Islam. According to mainstream Islamic tradition, any physical depiction of the Prophet Muhammad — even a respectful one — is considered blasphemous.

While many Muslims have expressed disgust at the deadly assault on the Charlie Hebdo employees, many were also deeply offended by its cartoons lampooning Muhammad.

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3 French Soldiers, 3 Sitting Ducks

Two soldiers on Jan. 20 stand outside the Jewish museum in Brussels where an Islamist killed four people in May 2014.

Two soldiers on Jan. 20 stand outside the Jewish museum in Brussels where an Islamist killed four people in May 2014.

By Daniel Pipes, one of the world’s foremost experts on radical Islam and politics in the Middle East.

Israel Hayom (Feb 4) — Comes the news that another Islamist immigrant from Mali named Coulibaly has attacked another Jewish institution in France. The first one, Amedy Coulibaly, murdered four Jews at a kosher store in Paris on Jan. 9; this second one injured three soldiers yesterday as they protected a Jewish community center in Nice.

Police say Moussa Coulibaly, about 30 years old, with a record of theft and violence, and apparently not related to Amedy, pulled a knife about 8 inches long out of a bag, injuring one soldier in the chin, one in the cheek, and one in the forearm.

Coincidentally, I left Nice about four hours before this attack and had passed by that Jewish center a few days earlier, in the course of a tour of Muslim-majority areas in ten cities across France and Belgium. Those travels brought me repeatedly in proximity to the heavily armed soldiers who protect Jewish institutions and prompted several skeptical conclusions on my part about their presence:

  • They are soldiers, not police, and so not trained to be alert to street problems.
  • They tend to get distracted by their smartphones or pretty girls passing by.
  • They clutch their assault rifles across their bodies, which leaves them vulnerable to someone driving by and shooting at them.
  • As confirmed by today’s attack, the ostensible protection they offer actually provokes Islamists and other antisemites.
  • They are only posted temporarily to the Jewish institutions in the aftermath of the Hyper Cacher attack a month ago and before long will leave.
  • They protect only the institutions themselves, not the people who come and go to them, who remain as vulnerable as ever.

In short, the soldiers are sitting ducks whose deployment does little to protect the Jewish community or solve the larger problem of Islamist violence. But it does offer another instance of emotionally satisfying “security theater” which temporarily gives everyone a constructive sense of doing something.

A real solution will require much deeper and longer-range steps that concern national identity, immigration policy, integration efforts, and effective policing.

Mr. Pipes (DanielPipes.org, @DanielPipes) is president of the Middle East Forum. © 2015 by Daniel Pipes. All rights reserved.

Feb. 4, 2015 addendum: A number of readers added valuable insights to the above analysis:

  • A former French navy officer informs me that “If you asked a general why the soldiers did not shoot the attacker, he would dodge the question as he cannot lie but they could not shoot because the guns you see strapped on these soldiers has an empty magazine. It has no bullets! It’s insane! Certain officers have a loaded magazine separately in a pouch, but not inserted in the gun. The only military personnel allowed to carry loaded weapons are the gendarmerie. All others, including soldiers, infantry, and even commandos are not allowed to carry loaded weapons. Because this is ridiculous, the government hides it.”

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Blaming Israel for anti-Semitism misses the point

A French soldier stands guard next to a jewish school in Nice January 23, 2015 as part of the highest level of "Vigipirate" security plan after the Islamist attacks in France. (Eric Gaillard / Reuters)

A French soldier stands guard next to a jewish school in Nice January 23, 2015 as part of the highest level of “Vigipirate” security plan after the Islamist attacks in France. (Eric Gaillard / Reuters)

The Washington Post (Feb 4) — The title of my recently published book is “Israel: Is It Good for the Jews?” When I started writing it, I did not know how I was going to answer that question. The more I delved into the subject, the more I read and did research, the more I concluded that the answer is yes. The recent events in Paris make me even surer.

In the long and blood-soaked history of Europe’s Jews, the death of four more in a Parisian kosher market is, at best, a footnote. But they were not the accidental victims of the terrorists’ wrath, not just merely in the way or in the line of fire. They were singled out for who they were and not for what they had done — like publish provocative cartoons. They were killed for being Jews.

Why? The conventional answer is Israel — or, to put it another way, the plight of the Palestinians. There is some truth to both of these, yet the Islamic world is not so concerned about Palestinians that it has accorded Palestinian refugees anything like equal rights in the countries where they have sought refuge or protested when whole Palestinian communities were uprooted from Kuwait and other Gulf states after the PLO supported Saddam Hussein — ethnic cleansing of a type. The Arab world weeps for the Palestinians — but only on cue and not too much.

So the supposed madness, the supposedly justifiable anger, that drives some Muslims into sharing core beliefs with Adolf Hitler, is not all that essential to the Islamic or Arab identity. Millions, maybe a billion, Muslims go about their daily business without giving Israel or the Palestinians a thought. They do give a thought, however, to their own helplessness, to the astonishingly high rates of unemployment both in the Arab world and in the minority neighborhoods of European cities. Here is where the Jew plays a role. He can be blamed.

Anti-Semitism is the most durable and pliable of all conspiracy theories. It supposedly accounts for the death of Christ and the Jewish dominance of the liberal media. It carefully noted the disproportionate number of Jews in the communist movement and in the capitalist movement. Anti-Semitism can account for the wealth of the Jews and their scientific and artistic achievements. They are — we are — a most nimble people. We’ve had to be.

Blaming Israel for anti-Semitism misses the point. For at least 1,948 years, anti-Semitism both existed and thrived when Israel did neither. The pogroms of Europe — and the occasional ones of the Muslim Middle East — took place with no Israel in sight. The Holocaust consumed 6 million Jews and not because Hitler was pro-Palestinian. Anti-Semitism infected ancient Egypt, ancient Rome, the subtle mind of T.S. Eliot and the tinkering brain of Henry Ford way before any future Israeli had pushed around any future Palestinian. Anti-Semitism does not need a reason. It needs only an excuse.

That excuse is present in contemporary Europe. Its Muslim minority is poor and inordinately unemployed. It loathes Israel for what it is allegedly doing to the Palestinians, and it hates Jews for being Jewish — supposedly rich, powerful, secretive, conspiratorial and manipulative.

The remedy — the cure — is education and assimilation. In the United States, high levels of anti-Semitism in the Hispanic population dissipate with assimilation. The Anti-Defamation League tells us that, while 12 percent of all Americans are anti-Semites, the figure for foreign-born Hispanics is an astounding 36 percent. But for Hispanics born in the United States, the figure is only 14 percent. America is adept at assimilation. Europe is lousy at it. Europe needs work.

But non-Muslim Europe needs work as well. Especially on the left, discussions and denunciations of Israel feel like a snowball with a rock in the center: Something aside from protest is being aired. Anti-Zionism may be legitimate, but it too often seems like a way of expressing anti-Semitism. Israel’s occupation of the West Bank has always troubled me, but it is governed benevolently compared with the way China oppresses Tibet — and where are those demonstrations?

In researching my book, I came away in awe of anti-Semitism. It may be more durable than most of our current religions — it is older than most — and it made me wonder when it would stage one of its periodic revivals. That now seems underway and, sadly, makes my book title almost irrelevant. The question is not whether Israel is good for the Jews but whether it is necessary. That answer, increasingly, is yes.

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Krauthammer: Do we really mean ‘never again’?

Charles Krauthammer is a syndicated columnist and a Fox News commentator. One of the best columnists and political commentators in the world. This might be the best op-ed he’s ever written.

Candles burn by a memorial plaque at the Birkenau Nazi death camp in Oswiecim, Poland, Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015, after the official remembrance ceremony. (Alik Keplicz / AP)

Candles burn by a memorial plaque at the Birkenau Nazi death camp in Oswiecim, Poland, Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2015, after the official remembrance ceremony. (Alik Keplicz / AP)

The Washington Post (Jan 29) — Amid the ritual expressions of regret and the pledges of “never again” on Tuesday’s 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, a bitter irony was noted: Anti-Semitism has returned to Europe. With a vengeance.

It has become routine. If the kosher-grocery massacre in Paris hadn’t happened in conjunction with Charlie Hebdo, how much worldwide notice would it have received? As little as did the murder of a rabbi and three children at a Jewish school in Toulouse. As little as did the terror attack that killed four at the Jewish Museum in Brussels.

The rise of European anti-Semitism is, in reality, just a return to the norm. For a millennium, virulent Jew-hatred — persecution, expulsions, massacres — was the norm in Europe until the shame of the Holocaust created a temporary anomaly wherein anti-Semitism became socially unacceptable.

The hiatus is over. Jew-hatred is back, recapitulating the past with impressive zeal. Italians protesting Gaza handed out leaflets calling for a boycott of Jewish merchants. As in the 1930s. A widely popular French comedian has introduced a variant of the Nazi salute. In Berlin, Gaza brought out a mob chanting, “Jew, Jew, cowardly pig, come out and fight alone!” Berlin, mind you.

European anti-Semitism is not a Jewish problem, however. It’s a European problem, a stain, a disease of which Europe is congenitally unable to rid itself.

From the Jewish point of view, European anti-Semitism is a sideshow. The story of European Jewry is over. It died at Auschwitz. Europe’s place as the center and fulcrum of the Jewish world has been inherited by Israel. Not only is it the first independent Jewish commonwealth in 2,000 years. It is, also for the first time in 2,000 years, the largest Jewish community on the planet.

The threat to the Jewish future lies not in Europe but in the Muslim Middle East, today the heart of global anti-Semitism, a veritable factory of anti-Jewish literature, films, blood libels and calls for violence, indeed for another genocide.

The founding charter of Hamas calls not just for the eradication of Israel but for the killing of Jews everywhere. Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah welcomes Jewish emigration to Israel — because it makes the killing easier: “If Jews all gather in Israel, it will save us the trouble of going after them worldwide.’’ And, of course, Iran openly declares as its sacred mission the annihilation of Israel.

For America, Europe and the moderate Arabs, there are powerful reasons having nothing to do with Israel for trying to prevent an apocalyptic, fanatically anti-Western clerical regime in Tehran from getting the bomb: Iranian hegemony, nuclear proliferation (including to terror groups) and elemental national security.

For Israel, however, the threat is of a different order. Direct, immediate and mortal.

The sophisticates cozily assure us not to worry. Deterrence will work. Didn’t it work against the Soviets? Well, just 17 years into the atomic age, we came harrowingly close to deterrence failure and all-out nuclear war. Moreover, godless communists anticipate no reward in heaven. Atheists calculate differently from jihadists with their cult of death. Name one Soviet suicide bomber.

Former Iranian president Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, known as a moderate, once characterized tiny Israel as a one-bomb country. He acknowledged Israel’s deterrent capacity but noted the asymmetry: “Application of an atomic bomb would not leave anything in Israel, but the same thing would just produce damages in the Muslim world.” Result? Israel eradicated, Islam vindicated. So much for deterrence.

And even if deterrence worked with Tehran, that’s not where the story ends. Iran’s very acquisition of nukes would set off a nuclear arms race with half a dozen Muslim countries from Turkey to Egypt to the Gulf states — in the most unstable part of the world. A place where you wake up in the morning to find a pro-American Yemeni government overthrown by rebels whose slogan is “God is Great. Death to America. Death to Israel. Damn the Jews. Power to Islam.”

The idea that some kind of six-sided deterrence would work in this roiling cauldron of instability the way it did in the frozen bipolarity of the Cold War is simply ridiculous.

The Iranian bomb is a national security issue, an alliance issue and a regional Middle East issue. But it is also a uniquely Jewish issue because of Israel’s situation as the only state on earth overtly threatened with extinction, facing a potential nuclear power overtly threatening that extinction.

On the 70th anniversary of Auschwitz, mourning dead Jews is easy. And, forgive me, cheap. Want to truly honor the dead? Show solidarity with the living — Israel and its 6 million Jews. Make “never again” more than an empty phrase. It took Nazi Germany seven years to kill 6 million Jews. It would take a nuclear Iran one day.

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After Israel boycott vote, swastikas hit Jewish fraternity at UC Davis

10479071_10152682081112689_4173428026791824978_nA Jewish fraternity at the University of California Davis was spray-painted with two swastikas Saturday, several days after the student council voted to endorse divestment from Israel.

Breitbart (Feb 1) — The fraternity, Alpha Epsilon Pi, had opposed the vote, which is part of a coordinated campaign by pro-Palestinian/anti-Israel activists across the University of California system.

CBS Sacramento reported that AEPi members believe their fraternity was attacked in retaliation for its support for Israel. The fraternity was attacked on the Jewish sabbath, shortly after the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz.

Some activists claim AEPi staged the attack, the Times of Israel reports. Davis police are investigating the incident as a hate crime.

The university administration released a statement on Facebook, stating in part:

This kind of behavior is not only repugnant and a gross violation of the values our university holds dear, it is unacceptable and must not be tolerated on our campus or anywhere else.

No matter what religious, political or personal beliefs we hold, as members of a university community we have an obligation to treat each other with respect and dignity, even when we disagree.

Nothing rivals a swastika as a more potent or offensive symbol of hatred and violence toward our Jewish community members, but this odious symbol is an affront to us all. As campus leaders, we are saddened and outraged that this occurred in our community.

Photo: StandWithUs via Facebook

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SIGN THE PETITION: http://aggiesdemandaction.nationbuilder.com/

Stand up to anti-Semitism on campuses: urge the University of California to do something about the increase in anti-Semitic incidents on campus. No students should feel threatened for their religion or ethnicity!

Anti-Semitism – then and now

(Photo credit: REUTERS)

(Photo credit: REUTERS)

The Jerusalem Post (Jan 27) — The world commemorates the International Holocaust Remembrance Day on Tuesday, January 27 – which also marks the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp.

At Auschwitz, about 300 survivors of the concentration camp, along with thousands of others, will participate in a commemoration ceremony.

In Prague, a two-day conference that will include a ceremony at the site of a concentration camp at Terezin was organized by the European Jewish Congress.

While the atrocities of the Holocaust took place seven decades ago, the dangers of murderously violent anti-Semitism are hardly a thing of the past.

As recent events in France have tragically proven, hatred of Jews remains a force so powerful that the future vitality and continuity of Jewish communities throughout Europe has been questioned, even in places where levels of anti-Semitism are relatively low, such as Britain.

Murderous hatred of Jews has not gone away. But one important thing has changed: Jews no longer rely solely on the compassion and good graces of the world for their survival.

And this makes all the difference.

A combination of factors makes many parts of Europe highly inhospitable for Jews. Europe’s ongoing economic malaise, which has hit some countries (France, Spain, Italy, Greece, Ireland) worse than others (Germany), has historically led to the fostering of Jew hatred.

Skepticism regarding the European Union project has included a reassertion of strongly nationalistic elements which have singled out Jews, the ultimate outsiders, for special censure and as a foil for differentiating “us” from “them.”

A combination of immigration and high natural growth has resulted in the swift growth of Muslim communities throughout Europe. While the vast majority of these newcomers to Europe are law-abiding, nearly all of the murderous attacks against European Jews in recent years have been carried out by Muslim extremists.

European leaders have taken the threat against Jews seriously.

They realize that violence directed against Jews – particularly violence motivated by a fundamentalist, reactionary reading of Islam – represents an assault on the foundations of liberal democracies.

A number of countries – including France, Britain and Germany – have taken steps to track European Muslims who have traveled to Syria and Iraq to fight with Islamic State or other offshoots of al-Qaida. Legislation that enables European authorities to monitor the Internet and share intelligence is also being considered.

European countries have also beefed up security outside synagogues, Jewish community centers, schools and other conspicuously Jewish institutions.

There have also been calls for special legislation that would outlaw hate speech of all kinds, from xenophobia and anti-Semitism to homophobia and misogyny. Police and law enforcement would then be empowered to prosecute and even imprison those who spout hate speech.

But while the fight against anti-Semitism is noble and important, we can derive little but discouragement and a sense of futility from the thought that just 70 years after the most horrific genocide in history, we are witnessing in the very same place a return of this lethal obsession. If the lesson has not been learned by now, it never will be learned.

Transforming Jewish schools, synagogues, groceries and even whole neighborhoods into quasi-military zones ringed with police and soldiers might provide more security to Jews, but they also serve as humiliating reminders of the ineradicable nature of Jew hatred.

Similarly, irrational hatred of Jews cannot be legislated away. Indeed, the stifling of speech only pushes it underground.

Purveyors of hateful ideas are transformed into martyrs. The popularity of anti-Semitic comedian Dieudonne has probably increased since the French supreme court for administrative justice upheld a ban of his show in the city of Nantes. Legal action certainly has not stopped the man from expressing his despicable opinions. The reality is that large numbers of French citizens identify with Dieudonne’s humor.

Legislation will not change this sad fact.

Just 70 years after the Holocaust, we are confronted with a stark reality: anti-Semitism remains a danger. History’s lessons have not been learned. The situation of the Jews in Europe is once again precarious.

But unlike 70 years ago, Europe’s Jews need not rely on the rectitude of their hosts. They have a choice.

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Auschwitz survivor: Being alive is best ‘revenge’

A photo of Renee Ganz's family before the war. From left is her brother Nickolai, mother Bella, Renee, and her father Laslo. (Photo: Debbie Hill for USA TODAY)

A photo of Renee Ganz’s family before the war. From left is her brother Nickolai, mother Bella, Renee, and her father Laslo. (Photo: Debbie Hill for USA TODAY)

USA Today (Jan 26) — TEL AVIV, Israel — Shortly after the Nazi invasion of what was then Hungary in May 1944, Renee Ganz’s family and most of the 25,000 Jews in the city of Oradea were forced into cattle cars and transported to the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp.

Men and boys were placed in one line, while women and girls were led to another when they arrived at the camp in Oświęcim, Poland. Ganz was just 15 at the time.

“I asked a German soldier why we were being separated and he said, ‘You’ve had a long journey. You need to take a shower,'” Ganz, now 86, recalls. “That’s when the selection began.”

German officers took one look at the prisoners and decided who would live and who would die.

“If they pointed left, you went to the gas chambers and crematorium. If they pointed to the right, you became a slave,” she says. “We were sent to the right, but I never saw my father or brother Nikolai again.”

Ganz, a self-described optimist, tries not to dwell on the horrors of the Holocaust and the 100 relatives she lost, but the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau has stirred up painful memories. She spent two months at Auschwitz before being sent to a slave labor camp along with her mother, who also survived the war.

On Tuesday — Holocaust Remembrance Day — Ganz will return to the death camp for the first time, along with nearly 100 other Auschwitz survivors from 19 countries.

“It will be very difficult, but it is important,” she says.

The railway track leading to the infamous "Death Gate" at the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration in Oswiecim, Poland. Ceremonies marking the 70th anniversary of the liberation will be Jan. 27, 2015. (Photo: Christopher Furlong, Getty Images)

The railway track leading to the infamous “Death Gate” at the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration in Oswiecim, Poland. Ceremonies marking the 70th anniversary of the liberation will be Jan. 27, 2015. (Photo: Christopher Furlong, Getty Images)

A medical team of 12 doctors, psychologists and nurses will accompany the survivors, ages 73 to 96, because of the “emotionally powerful and physically taxing” nature of the visit, the World Jewish Congress said.

“This may be the last major anniversary we will be able to remember with those who experienced the Holocaust firsthand. From this historic event, their voices will echo across the generations,” says Robert Singer, secretary general for the Jewish congress, which helped organize the event.

Of the more than 1.1 million people who died at Auschwitz, about 90% were Jews, according to the Yad Vashem Holocaust World Center in Jerusalem. About one in six of all Jews killed during the Holocaust died at the camp. Also killed there were homosexuals, Soviet prisoners of war, Christian Poles, Romani and others.

Hundreds of thousands of prisoners transported from all across Europe were sent to the gas chambers, then cremated at the camp. Those who survived the daily death “selections” often died from infection or starvation.

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The PA and Fatah paved the way for Wednesday’s stabbing attack in Tel Aviv

YouTube Preview Image

Recent PMW reports documented

that PA and Fatah have been encouraging stabbings

and other means of violence against Israelis


Abbas’ advisor after synagogue murders:

“Blessed be your quality weapons, the wheels of your cars,
your axes and kitchen knives… because [they are
being used] according to Allah’s will.
We are the soldiers of Allah.”

[Facebook page of Abbas’ advisor Sultan Abu Al-Einein, Nov. 19, 2014]


Official PA daily after stabbing attempt:

“Every Palestinian has the right to feel proud

of what is seen in the video

of the stabbing of the two soldiers in Jerusalem…

Now, every Palestinian raises his hand

holding a knife together with this young Palestinian,

and stabs the Zionists”

[Al-Asima, bi-weekly distributed with official PA daily, Jan. 5, 2015]


Fatah video after synagogue murders:

“I’m coming towards you, my enemy,
We’re going down from every house with cleavers and knives,
With grenades we announced a popular war.
I swear, you won’t escape, my enemy”

[Facebook, “Fatah – The Main Page,” Nov. 22, 2014]

From Wednesday's terror attack. (Photo credit: Yaron Brener)

From Wednesday’s terror attack. (Photo credit: Yaron Brener)

by Nan Jacques Zilberdik

Todays’ terror attack in which over a dozen Israelis were stabbed in a bus in Tel Aviv is a result of the ongoing violence promotion carried out by Mahmoud Abbas’ Palestinian Authority and Fatah. They both encourage the use of violence against Israelis, and Palestinian Media Watch has documented that this violence promotion in recent months has mentioned “stabbings” and the use “knives and cleavers” specifically.

Immediately after terrorists murdered five people in a Jerusalem synagogue using knives and axes, Abbas’ advisor and Fatah Central Committee member Sultan Abu Al-Einein praised the terrorists and their weapons:

“Blessed be your quality weapons, the wheels of your cars,
your axes and kitchen knives… because [they are
being used] according to Allah’s will.
We are the soldiers of Allah.”

[Facebook page of Abbas’ advisor and Fatah Central Committee member Sultan Abu Al-Einein, Nov. 19, 2014]

Similarly, Fatah posted a video on Facebook promoting the use of “cleavers and knives” against “my enemy”:

YouTube Preview Image
I’m coming towards you, my enemy,
from every house, neighborhood and street
Our war is a war of the streets.
I’m coming towards you, my enemy
We’re going down from every house with cleavers and knives
With grenades we announced a popular war
I swear, you won’t escape, my enemy, from the revolution and the people.
How will you escape the ring of fire while the crowds are blocking the way?”
[Facebook, “Fatah – The Main Page,” Nov. 22, 2014]

Click to view

Following the attempted stabbing of two soldiers in Jerusalem, the official PA daily ran an op-ed in its bi-weekly supplement that described the attempted murder as Palestinian “pride,” stating that “now, every Palestinian raises his hand holding a knife… and stabs the Zionists“:

“Every Palestinian has the right to feel proud of what is seen in the video of the stabbing of the two soldiers in Jerusalem… Now, every Palestinian raises his hand holding a knife together with this young Palestinian, and stabs the Zionists”

[Al-Asima, bi-weekly distributed with official PA daily, Jan. 5, 2015]


Last week, PMW exposed a video promoting the murder of Jews produced by Hamas’ Islamic Bloc at Al-Quds University in which they enacted murder of Jews at prayer. One Jew is stabbed to death in the video and the other is shot.

PMW has documented numerous examples of violence promotion andglorification of terrorists by both the PA and Fatah.

Click here for original source.

Click here for information from the Israel Defense Forces on the terror attack in Tel Aviv.

Reflections on the terror in Paris

An excellent and very important op-ed about terrorism and the Western world’s fight against it.

875PJ Media (Jan 16) — The Islamic world is currently in the midst of a great historic convulsion. This process is giving birth to political trends and movements of a murderously violent nature. These movements offer a supposed escape route from the humiliation felt at the profound societal failure of the Arab and to a slightly lesser extent the broader Muslim world.

The escape is by way of the most violent and intolerant historic trends of Islam, into a mythologized and imagined past. The route to this old-new imagined utopia is a bloody one. All who oppose or even slight it must die. The simple and brutal laws of 7th century Muslim Arabia are re-applied, in their literal sense. The events of last week in Paris were a manifestation of this trend.

These trends exist not only in the Arab and Muslim worlds themselves. Because of mass immigration from the Arab and Muslim world to western European countries, they are also powerful and present in immigrant communities in these countries. The Kouachi brothers and Amedi Coulibaly are the latest, and no doubt not the last representatives of this political world to impose themselves on us.

The political trend in question is called political Islam. It manifests itself in its most extreme form in the rival global networks of the Al Qaeda movement and the Islamic State. But these, alas, are only the sharp tip of a much larger iceberg.

Political Islamists are not all, or mainly, young men from slums. On the contrary, its adherents include heads of state, powerful economic interests and media groups, and prominent cultural figures. Some of these, absurdly, were even present at the “solidarity rally” in Paris.

They rendered this event an empty spectacle by their presence.

Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu of Turkey, for example, came to offer his solidarity to the victims of journalists murdered by Islamists in Paris, just two days after the Turkish courts sentenced a pianist to a 10 month prison sentence, suspended for five years, for the crime of “denigrating religion (ie Islam).” More urgently, Turkey has been an active supporter of both Islamic State and al-Qaeda forces in northern Syria over the last three years. That is, Davutoglu was marching in condemnation of forces to which his own government has offered support.

Political Islam is a reaction to profound societal failure. It is also a flight into unreality. It has nothing practical to offer as an actual remedy to Arab and Islamic developmental problems. Economic, legal and societal models deriving from the 7th century Arabian desert are fairly obvious impediments to success in the 21st.

Where they are systematically imposed, as in the Islamic State, they will create something close to hell on earth. Where they remain present in more partial forms — as in Qatar, Gaza, Iran, (increasingly) Turkey, and so on — they will merely produce stifling, stagnant and repressive societies.

But the remedy for failure that political Islam offers is not a material one. It offers in generous portions the intoxicating psychological cocktail of murderous rage and self-assertion, and the desire to strike out and destroy those deemed enemies — infidels who transgress binding religious commandments, Jews and so on.

This is not the first time that Europe has encountered political phenomena based on murderous rage and utopias buried in the magical past. The European fascist movements produced precisely such a mix. But of course, this time around, the rage and the utopia derive not from European culture, but from an alien culture which has implanted itself among the Europeans.

Here is the second part of the problem. Arab and Muslim societies may be basket cases, but they retain an exceptionally strong and vivid sense of themselves. It is the irony of history that this sense of self is precisely of a type that is bound to keep their societies mired in failure. But history favors irony, and this sense nevertheless remains powerfully experienced and hence politically potent. In this respect, the modern Islamic world resembles western Europe of 80 or 90 years ago, but not the contemporary continent.

In contemporary western European societies, political Islam meets a human collectivity suffering, by contrast, from a profound loss of self. No one, at least in the mainstream of politics and culture, seems able to quite articulate what western European countries are for, or what they oppose — at least beyond a sort of vapid belief in everyone doing what they want and not bothering each other.

The result is that when violent political Islam collides with the satiated, lost societies of western Europe, the response is not defiance on the part of the latter, but rather fear.

This fear, as fear is wont to do, manifests itself in various, not particularly edifying, ways.

The most obvious is avoidance (“the attacks had nothing to do with Islam,” “unemployment and poverty are the root cause,” “the Islamic State is neither Islamic nor a state,” etc etc).

Another is appeasement — “maybe if we give them some of what they want, they’ll leave us alone.”

This response perhaps partially explains the notable adoption in parts of western Europe of the anti-Jewish prejudice so prevalent in the Islamic world.

The ennui of the western European mainstream will almost certainly prevent the adoption of the very tough measures which alone might serve to adequately address the burgeoning problem of large numbers of young European Muslims committed to political Islam and to violence against their host societies.

Such measures — which would include tighter surveillance and policing of communities, quick deportations of incendiary preachers, revocation of citizenship for those engaged in violence, possible imprisonment of suspects and so on — would require a political will which is manifestly absent. So it wont happen. So the events of Paris will almost certainly recur.

And lastly, since the elites will not be able to produce resistance, it will come from outside of the elites. Hence the growth of populist, nationalist parties and movements in western Europe. But Europe being what it is, such revivalist movements are likely to contain a hefty dose of the xenophobia and bigotry which characterized the continent of old.

None of this can, at present, be discussed in polite European society. But all of it is fairly obvious. For this reason, Europe’s Jews are at present warily eying the door. As someone who was born in western Europe, and left it 25 years ago for Israel, I am happy to conclude that as a result of the efforts and sacrifice of many, Europe’s Jews are this time around neither defenseless nor alone. Nor will their blood be free to be taken with impunity.

Jonathan Spyer is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center, and a fellow at the Middle East Forum. He is the author of The Transforming Fire: The Rise of the Israel-Islamist Conflict (Continuum, 2011).

Click here for original source.

Paris terror attacks: The fruits of cowardice and appeasement

World leaders including Netanyahu and Abbas flank French Presdient Francois Hollande at Paris solidarity rally. (photo credit: REUTERS)

World leaders including Netanyahu and Abbas flank French Presdient Francois Hollande at Paris solidarity rally. (photo credit: REUTERS)

The Jerusalem Post (Jan 17) — The ill winds that have been gathering over Europe became a tornado last week in Paris with the barbaric Charlie Hebdo massacre, followed by the horrific terrorist attack at a kosher supermarket – a total of 17 dead in three days. But alas, the horror will in all likelihood soon recede and life will continue as usual until the next attack.

…  Western governments have yet to internalize the reality that what happened in Paris was not merely another instance of “terrorism” but a classic manifestation of the “clash of civilizations.”

Aside from murderous attacks primarily directed against Jews in Europe over recent months, there have been ongoing massacres and atrocities committed by Islamic terrorists throughout the world.

To name a few: the butchering of 2,000 Nigerians in the wake of the Boko Haram enslavement of 300 schoolgirls; the murder of 130 schoolchildren in Peshawar, Pakistan, by the Taliban; the barbaric videos broadcast of hostages being decapitated; ongoing mass murder in Syria and Iraq; oppression of women; and gruesome persecution, expulsion and murder of Christians in the Middle East.

Today, as the global impact of Islamic fundamentalism grows exponentially, with increasing manifestations of brutal terrorism, Western leaders lack the courage to even identify the enemy. It has ominous parallels to the struggle with Nazism. Then as now, Western governments initially sought to avoid conflict by appeasing the barbarians – which only served to embolden them.

…  THROUGHOUT THE world, jihadist mullahs and preachers promote hatred and extremism. In European cities, second-generation homegrown Muslims and converts are indoctrinated to endorse and in some cases participate in jihad and the murder of infidels. Those who convert are not necessarily from the underprivileged classes, but “ideologues,” many of whom belong to comfortable middle class families and are university graduates.

But worse has been the unspoken acquiescence of most governments and the media, preventing any meaningful discussion of the threat from Islamic extremism. Apart from downplaying and often even denying the overriding Islamic element in acts of terrorism, governments and media have disgracefully branded as “Islamophobic” any serious effort to discuss and analyze the problem, even promoting “hate speech” legislation to stifle any such public discussion.

The 57-member Organization of the Islamic Conference has attempted to make blasphemy (i.e., criticism of Islam) a crime in international law.

They have been further emboldened by the failure to immediately prosecute Islamic extremists who threaten violence against those who express criticism of or dishonor Islam. What is truly ironic is that many of those on the Left who normally endorse the crudest outbursts against Christianity and Judaism are the first to accuse any critics of Islam of Islamophobia, and display far greater concern for the sensitivities of Muslims.

…  Ironically, in a historic and critical New Year’s address, largely ignored by the mainstream press, Sisi [Egypt’s democratically elected President] publicly expressed what Obama and Western leaders have been denying. He stated explicitly that jihadism and terrorism were linked to “the corpus of texts and ideas that we have sacralized over the centuries.” He warned that this was “antagonizing the entire world,” that “this umma is being torn, it is being destroyed… by our own hands,” and that “we are in need of a religious revolution.”

…  For Jews, the writing has been on the wall for a long time. The virulence of the anti-Semitic hatred closing in on Jews in Europe (and elsewhere) is horrifying. Robert Wistrich, the world’s leading scholar on anti-Semitism, says that anti-Semitism in France is now in “an advanced stage of disease” that cannot be reversed. There were a series of anti-Semitic murders in France and Belgium preceding the Paris massacre but they failed to raise the same level of outrage as the Charlie Hebdo murders. There were no popular campaigns saying “Je suis Juif.” Indeed there seemed to be greater concern about “Islamophobia” than the targeted Jewish victims.

Europe is today facing a crisis as serious as the confrontation with Nazism. If Western leaders continue behaving like Chamberlain and fail to stand up to this global threat, it could usher in a new Dark Age in which the Judeo-Christian culture is subsumed by primitive barbarism. The writing is on the wall.

For Jews, the Zionist vision has once again been tragically vindicated.

The author’s website can be viewed at www.wordfromjerusalem.com. He may be contacted at ileibler@ leibler.com.

Click here for full article.

Jewish Agency: Paris massacre shows time running out for Europe

We’re not building our immigration strategy on tragic events, Jewish Agency chief says, but on the fact that European Jews are increasingly uncomfortable.


The Times of Israel (Jan 12) — After Islamist terrorists massacred 12 people in the heart of Paris, Jewish Agency head and former Soviet Prisoner of Zion Natan Sharansky said Thursday, “We’re not building our aliyah strategy on tragic events. We’re building it on the fact that there is this place in the world called Europe, where Jews are feeling increasingly uncomfortable.” Sharansky predicted more than 10,000 French Jews will move to Israel in 2015 – breaking 2014’s record of 7,000.

“If France and the other Western nations will not fight quickly and strongly for reestablishing the civilization of liberal nations, Europe is in danger,” he said. “The exodus of Jews, as many times in the past, is the first harbinger, a warning of where it goes.”

“It was an ideological decision of this post-modern Europe that all cultures have the same values and therefore we cannot demand from them to change, to betray their culture for the sake of ours.” Large parts of France’s huge Muslim immigrant community don’t feel loyal to the liberal values of society, he asserted. “Multiculturalism…created inside the society of a proud liberal nation a society of people who believe they can really challenge freedom of speech by terror.”

France’s error was to give citizenship to millions without demanding that they share French values, and it made this mistake because it believes that values are something relative.

Click here for full article.

10 worst global anti-Semitic/anti-Israel incidents of 2014

Anti-semitism. (photo credit:REUTERS)

Anti-semitism. (photo credit:REUTERS)

Jerusalem Post (Dec 29) — The Simon Wiesenthal Center has ranked the 10 worst outbreaks of anti-Semitism and anti-Israelism in 2014. Rabbi Marvin Hier, founder and dean of the human rights organization, told The Jerusalem Post on Sunday that this year’s list seeks to show how anti-Semitic “rhetoric at the top has filtered down to average people.”

Hier said the center deliberately chose not to include principal Arab leaders and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan because the ranking system reveals the spread of hate on a grassroots level.

Rabbi Abraham Cooper, the center’s associate dean, told the Post that Europe dominated the list of incidents of Israel hatred and anti-Semitic violence, with six mentions.

The No. 1 slot went to a doctor in Belgium who refused to provide medical care to a 90-year-old Jewish woman with a fractured rib. He told her son, who had requested the care: “Send her to Gaza for a few hours, then she will get rid of the pain. I’m not coming,” and hung up.

Hershy Taffel, Bertha Klein’s grandson, filed a formal discrimination complaint with the authorities, according to the paper Joods Actueel.

“It reminds me of what happened in Europe 70 years ago,” Taffel said. “I never thought those days would be repeated.”

Parts of Jordan’s government and the Palestinian Fatah party in Israel’s disputed territories garnered the second spot. After Palestinian terrorists murdered four rabbis in the Kehilat Bnai Torah synagogue in west Jerusalem, Jordanian MPs organized a moment of silence for the terrorists and read Koran verses aloud, stating their purpose was to “glorify their pure souls and the souls of all the martyrs in the Arab and Muslim nations.”

The Wiesenthal Center’s list noted that Jordanian Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour sent a condolence letter to the families of the terrorists, writing, “I ask God to envelope them with mercy and to grant you patience, comfort and recovery from your grief…” In response to Palestinian acts of vehicular terrorism, which included the death of a baby at a Jerusalem light rail stop, and the murder of three Israeli teenagers kidnapped from a bus stop, Fatah depicted the boys as rats in a cartoon on its official website.

The brutal assault on a Jewish couple, including the rape of a woman, in an apartment on the outskirts of Paris, resulted in ranking No. 3.

Assailants tied up the couple and demanded, “Tell us where you hide the money. You Jews always have money.”

MPs from the radical anti-Israel wing of Germany’s Left Party secured the No. 4 spot. Annette Groth, Inge Höger, Claudia Haydt and Heike Hänsel fomented hatred of the Jewish state during a talk in the Bundestag. Höger and Groth invited two obscure anti-Israel extremists, Max Blumenthal and David Sheen, to deliver talks against Israel.

According to the center, “On November 10, the Left Party invited notorious Israel-bashers… in the party’s meeting room in the Bundestag, the day after commemoration of the anniversary of Kristallnacht – the 1938 pogrom when the Nazis burned Jewish synagogues across Germany. Blumenthal often casts Zionism as racism and conflates alleged Israeli misdeeds with Nazi imagery.”

The center wrote, “That was too much for top party leader Gregor Gysi, who canceled the usage of the party’s meeting room. The incident came to be known as ‘Toiletgate,’ because Gysi was forced to barricade himself in a bathroom to escape the wrath of Blumenthal and Sheen.

“It highlighted the ongoing efforts to demonize Israel by a group of extreme anti-Israel MPs, led by Inge Höger and Annette Groth. Both of these parliamentarians were onboard the controversial 2010 Mavi Marmara Gaza flotilla and upon their return to Berlin, were hailed by many of their party’s MPs.”

In response to the Toiletgate scandal, a petition signed by reform Left Party MPs, local politicians and members directed at but not limited to Haydt, Hänsel, Höger and Groth, states: “By stoking obsessive hatred of and demonizing Israel, members of our party in positions of responsibility are promoting anti-Semitic patterns of argument and a relativization of the Holocaust and the German responsibility for the extermination of millions of European Jews.”

The fifth ranking went to Turkish columnist Faruk Köse, who in his column in Yeni Akit, a newspaper with closes ties to President Erdogan’s government, wrote that Turkish Jews should pay a special tax for damages during Operation Protective Edge this past summer.

Köse also sought to convince Erdogan that the Jewish community should apologize for Israel’s self-defense measures during the operation.

“You came here after being banished from Spain. You have lived comfortably among us for 500 years and gotten rich at our expense. Is this your gratitude – killing Muslims? Erdogan, demand that the community leader apologize. “So of course one feels like saying, ‘God bless that Hitler!’”

The spread of right-wing anti-Semitism by Björn Söder, a Sweden Democrats Party politician, resulted in a sixth-place ranking. He said in an interview, “Most [people] of Jewish origin who have become Swedes leave their Jewish identity,” and that it is important to distinguish between “citizenship and nationhood.”

The Wiesenthal Center blasted Sweden’s government for failing to combat Jew hatred, saying, “Swedish Jews have been targets of hate crimes from Muslim extremists, but authorities have rarely, if ever, taken action against the perpetrators.”

The neo-fascist Mayor Mihaly Zoltan Orosz of Erpatek in eastern Hungary garnered the seventh slot, for his hanging of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and former president Shimon Peres in effigy at a public display in early August. According to the Wiesenthal entry, he told reporters “the Jewish terror state” was trying to annihilate the Palestinians, and he opposed “the efforts of Freemasons to rule the world.”

The sign hanging above the “body” of Peres reads: “I am a war criminal, bastard genocider, that’s why I get my rightful punishment, death by hanging! I am going to my master, to Satan, because hellfire awaits me! – Simón Peresz.”

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To the Students for Justice in Palestine, a Letter From an Angry Black Woman

‘You do not have the right to invoke my people’s struggle for your shoddy purposes’

A protest led by Students for Justice in Palestine at the University of Maryland, College Park in 2009. (Gerald Martineau/The Washington Post/Getty Images)

A protest led by Students for Justice in Palestine at the University of Maryland, College Park in 2009. (Gerald Martineau/The Washington Post/Getty Images)

TabletMag — The student organization Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) is prominent on many college campuses, preaching a mantra of “Freeing Palestine.” It masquerades as though it were a civil rights group when it is not. Indeed, as an African-American, I am highly insulted that my people’s legacy is being pilfered for such a repugnant agenda. It is thus high time to expose its agenda and lay bare some of the fallacies they peddle.

If you seek to promulgate the legacy of early Islamic colonialists who raped and pillaged the Middle East, subjugated the indigenous peoples living in the region, and foisted upon them a life of persecution and degradation—you do not get to claim the title of “Freedom Fighter.”

If you support a racist doctrine of Arab supremacism and wish (as a corollary of that doctrine) to destroy the Jewish state, you do not get to claim that the prejudices you peddle are forms of legitimate “resistance.”

If your heroes are clerics who sit in Gaza plotting the genocide of a people; who place their children on rooftops in the hopes they will get blown to bits; who heap praises upon their fellow gang members when they succeed in murdering Jewish school boys and bombing places of activity where Jews congregate—you do not get to claim that you are some Apollonian advocate of human virtue. You are not.

If your activities include grieving over the woefully incompetent performance by Hamas rocketeers and the subsequent millions of Jewish souls who are still alive—whose children were not murdered by their rockets; whose limbs were not torn from them; and whose disembowelment did not come into fruition—you do not get to claim that you stand for justice. You profess to be irreproachable. You are categorically not.

If your idea of a righteous cause entails targeting and intimidating Jewish students on campus, arrogating their history of exile-and-return and fashioning it in your own likeness you do not get to claim that you do so in the name of civil liberty and freedom of expression.

You do not get to champion regimes that murder, torture, and persecute their own people, deliberately keep them impoverished, and embezzle billions of dollar from them—and claim you are “pro-Arab.” You are not.

You do not get to champion a system wherein Jews are barred from purchasing land, traveling in certain areas, and living out such an existence merely because they are Jews—and claim that you are promoting equality for all. You do not get to enable that system by pushing a boycott of Jewish owned businesses, shops, and entities—and then claim that you are “against apartheid.” That is evil.

You do not get to justify the calculated and deliberate bombings, beatings, and lynchings of Jewish men, women, and children by referring to such heinous occurrences as part of a noble “uprising” of the oppressed—that is racism. It is evil.

• You do not get to pretend as though you and Rosa Parks would have been great buddies in the 1960s. Rosa Parks was a real Freedom Fighter. Rosa Parks was a Zionist.

Coretta Scott King was a Zionist.

A. Phillip Randolph was a Zionist.

Bayard Rustin was a Zionist.

Count Basie was a Zionist.

Dr. Martin Luther King Sr. was a Zionist.

Indeed, they and many more men and women signed a letter in 1975 that stated: “We condemn the anti-Jewish blacklist. We have fought too long and too hard to root out discrimination from our land to sit idly while foreign interests import bigotry to America. Having suffered so greatly from such prejudice, we consider most repugnant the efforts by Arab states to use the economic power of their newly-acquired oil wealth to boycott business firms that deal with Israel or that have Jewish owners, directors, or executives, and to impose anti-Jewish preconditions for investments in this country.”

You see, my people have always been Zionists because my people have always stood for the freedom of the oppressed. So, you most certainly do not get to culturally appropriate my people’s history for your own. You do not have the right to invoke my people’s struggle for your shoddy purposes and you do not get to feign victimhood in our name. You do not have the right to slander my people’s good name and link your cause to that of Dr. King’s. Our two causes are diametrically opposed to each other.

Your cause is the antithesis of freedom. It has cost hundreds of thousands of lives of both Arabs and Jews. It has separated these peoples, and has fomented animosity between them. It has led to heartache, torment, death and destruction.

It is of course your prerogative to continue to utilize platitudes for your cause. You are entirely within your rights to chant words like “equality” “justice” and “freedom fighter.”

You can keep using those words for as long as you like. But I do not think you know what they mean.

Click here for original source.

Childhood in Gaza Under Hamas’ Rule

IDF blog (Dec 15) —  For years, Hamas has brainwashed and manipulated people in Gaza, and they start young. While students their age around the world make friends, learn and expand their horizons, the children of Gaza are subjected to Hamas’ oppressive authoritarian rule that deprives them of a real education and teaches them violence and hatred.

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Poll: 80% of Palestinians support jihad terror attacks on Israeli civilians

Palestinians-celebrate-jihad-terrorThey’re approving of hit-and-run attacks on Israeli civilians, and of stabbing whole families to death in the homes in the middle of the night. They’re glorifying and celebrating savagery.

“Poll shows strong Palestinian support for attacks,” The Associated Press, December 9, 2014:

JERUSALEM (AP) — An overwhelming majority of Palestinians support a recent spate of attacks on Israelis amid heightened tensions over the most sensitive holy site in Jerusalem, according to an opinion poll released Tuesday.

The poll also found that more than half of Palestinians support a new uprising against Israel, and that the Hamas militant group would win presidential elections if they were held today.

Palestinian pollster Khalil Shikaki said the results reflected Palestinian anger over Israeli statements about the Jerusalem holy site, which is revered by Jews and Muslims, as well as a loss of hope following the collapse of U.S.-brokered peace talks and Israel’s recent war with Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

The Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research interviewed 1,270 people in the West Bank and Gaza last week. The poll had an error margin of 3 percentage points.

“There is an environment in which violence is becoming a dominant issue,” said Shikaki. “This seems to be one of the most important driving forces.”

There has been a spate of attacks in Jerusalem over the past month and a half, at a time of rising tensions over the contested holy site, revered by Muslims as Noble Sanctuary and by Jews as the Temple Mount.

Prominent members of Israel’s government have become more vocal in recent months about demands that Jews be allowed to pray at the Muslim-run site, which is home to the Al Aqsa Mosque and iconic Dome of the Rock.

Many Palestinians fear this is a pretext for a gradual Jewish takeover — a claim Israel denies.

The poll found 86 percent of respondents believe the shrine is in grave danger from Israel. It said 80 percent supported individual attacks by Palestinians who have stabbed Israelis or rammed cars into crowded train stations….

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Israel’s Arabs Need Better Leaders

Khaled Abu Toameh, an Arab Muslim, is a veteran award-winning journalist who has been covering Palestinian affairs for nearly three decades. He studied at Hebrew University and began his career as a reporter by working for a PLO-affiliated newspaper in Jerusalem. Abu Toameh currently works for the international media, serving as the ‘eyes and ears’ of foreign journalists in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

By Khaled Abu Toameh for the Gatestone Institute:

  • It is hard to see how the words and actions of these Arab Israeli leaders help, if at all, the Arab citizens of Israel.
  • It is time for these citizens to stand up to those Arab Israeli leaders who are causing them huge damage and remind them that they are supposed to represent Israeli Arabs and not the PLO or Hamas.
  • It is also time for them to start searching for better leaders.

Some representatives of the Arab community in Israel are continuing to cause tremendous damage both to their constituents and coexistence between Jews and Arabs.

These representatives, who serve in the Knesset (Parliament), have forgotten that they were elected to look after the interests of Israel’s Arab citizens.

Their fiery rhetoric and provocative actions are the main reason why a growing number of Israeli Jews have begun relating to Arab citizens as a “fifth column” and an “enemy from within.”

These Knesset members are obviously confused as to who their constituents are. Many of them seem to believe that they were elected to the Knesset to represent the Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Of course, not all of the 11 Arab Knesset members (out of 120) are involved in provocations and inflammatory rhetoric. Half of them appear to be working toward improving the living conditions of the 1.5 million Arab citizens of Israel.

The other half, however, do not seem to care about the problems facing their constituents in the Galilee, Triangle and Negev. Over the past decade, these Knesset members have done a great job representing the Palestinian Authority and Hamas.

It is possible that these representatives are so desperate to win media attention that they are willing to say or do anything that would provoke Israeli Jews. They know that dealing with the problems of infrastructure, unemployment and poverty in the Arab sector are not going to draw media attention.

They have learned that the best and fastest way to grab headlines is by issuing inflammatory statements or engaging in provocative actions against Israel.

… On another occasion, Zoabi compared Israeli soldiers to Islamic State terrorists. “They (Islamic State) kill one person with a knife each time, while the IDF kills dozens of Palestinians at a time by pressing a button,” Zoabi said. “The soldier remains in the plane when he launches strikes and he does not see the victim – the wings of the plane just lightly shift. IDF soldiers are no less a terrorist than the ones who behead. They kill more than a knife kills.”

It is hard to see how the words and actions of these Arab Israeli leaders help, if at all, the Arab citizens of Israel. On the contrary; these representatives seem to be determined to damage relations between Jews and Arabs inside Israel, the same way Hamas and the PLO destroyed any prospects for peace between Israel and the Palestinians of the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

The leaders of the Israeli Arabs are damaging their people’s hopes of being fully integrated into Israeli society and being looked upon by Israeli Jews as equal and loyal partners.

It is time for these citizens to stand up to those Arab Israeli leaders who are causing them huge damage and remind them that they are supposed to represent Israeli Arabs and not the PLO or Hamas.

It is also time for them to start searching for better leaders before it is too late to stop the rapid deterioration of relations between Israel’s Arabs and Jews.

Click here for full article.

WATCH: How do American college students react to ISIS, Israeli flags?

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The Jerusalem Post (Nov 20) — What happens when you wave the Islamic State flag on an American college campus? Filmmaker Ami Horowitz expected at least the same amount of outrage that the notoriously anti-Israel student body at the University of California-Berkley has toward Israel.

“I went to the bucolic campus armed with a flag that represents the greatest evil known today, ISIS,” Horowitz wrote in an article for Fox News. “If these are our best and brightest then we should all be afraid, very afraid.”

While waving the ISIS flag, Horowitz also chanted sarcastic justifications for the terror organization’s use of extreme violence and beheadings of foreign aid workers in Syria.

“ISIS is misunderstood. We just want our own state. Western and American imperialism are to blame, not us. We just want a state of our own, an Islamic state, no different than America.”

One passerby wished him “Good luck” while another passerby gave a supportive fist pump in the air. Most people just walked by hardly paying attention, however. The only bout of criticism came from a man telling him smoking is forbidden on campus.

When Horowitz did the same thing while waving the Israeli flag, the reaction was much different.

Horowitz received verbal assaults, yells and middle fingers. “The shocking video above unfortunately proves once and for all that there is in fact no connection between intellect and wisdom,” said Horowitz.

Click here for original source.