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Thursday, August 25, 2016

Huma: 'Jews in America greatly aided by the American memory of the Holocaust, the use of Israel as an American 'strategic ally' in the Middle East'

A radical Muslim journal for which Huma Abedin - likely to be chief of staff in a Clinton White House - served as assistant editor, published an article during her tenure containing anti-Semitic overtones directed at American Jews.
Abedin, who is vice-chair of Clinton's 2016 presidential campaign, spent 12 years as an assistant editor for Journal of Minority Muslim Affairs.
Her mother, Saleha Mahmood Abedin, is the journal's editor-in-chief and has been accused of espousing the views of the Muslim Brotherhood through the publication.
Huma Abedin's brother, Hassan, is an associate editor and her sister, Heba, is an assistant editor.
Huma Abedin was listed on the journal's masthead for more than a decade after she joined Clinton's team in 1996, rising from White House intern to one of the presidential nominee's closest confidantes.
...
One article, published during Huma Abedin's tenure, claimed that many Americans have a 'distorted and negative view' of Islam, Muslims and Arabs - ranging from perceptions of 'poverty, filth, the desert' to ideas that 'their 'sport' (other than sex, of course) is to destabilize Western economies and ruin the world in order to master it'.
The piece from 1999 also alleges that there are deep ties between the upper echelons of U.S. politics and pro-Israeli, Jewish-Americans, suggesting that Jewish people have been able to 'work the system' and are 'greatly aided by the American memory of the Holocaust' and Israel serving as America's ally in the Middle East.
The article was written by Michael W. Suleiman, a professor of Arab studies at Kansas State University who died of cancer in 2010.
'Within the US, pro-Israeli support has been strong among Jewish Americans, whereas Muslim and Arab Americans (another ethnic community) have sympathized with the Palestinians,' the article reads.
'However, Jewish Americans have had a distinct advantage over Muslims and Arabs in the US in that they are better organized, more committed, more united, and generally far better adept at working the American political system of presidential democracy.
'In this they have been greatly aided by the American memory of the Holocaust, the use of Israel as an American 'strategic ally' in the Middle East, as well as by the active missionary zeal and political support of Christian Zionists.'
The article goes on to say that while other minority groups in the U.S. have made great progress in equality, 'it seems that the only people that continue to be presented negatively and maligned with impunity are the Muslims/Arabs'.
But American Jews will vote overwhelmingly for Clinton anyway, because Trump is anti-abortion anti-immigration a Republican.

Read the whole thing.

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Hillel's anti-Israel educators

I'm now back in Israel, thank God.

I thought Hillel Director Eric Fingerhut was turning Hillel into a pro-Israel organization. Apparently he has not succeeded (assuming he tried). Here's a petition at Change.org calling for the dismissal of North Carolina Hillel director rabbi Jenny Solomon, for running a tour to Hebron with the viciously anti-Israel Breaking the Silence. Here's the petition.
On July 4, 2016, Rabbi Jenny Solomon co-led a trip to Hebron led by Breaking the Silence, a group that is closely associated with BDS (boycott, divest, and sanction Israel) organizations, harasses Israeli soldiers, and spreads hearsay accusations that demonize Israel that would be inadmissible in a court of law.
Rabbi Solomon and the Truah organization invited college groups to join the trip.
Who is Rabbi Jenny Solomon? She is the Senior Jewish Educator for NC Hillel.
In the 2015-2016, anti-Semitic attacks on campuses doubled. These attacks are directly correlated with the presence of BDS groups on campus.
This is NOT the time for Hillel to be hiring educators, rabbis, or directors with afiliation to the BDS movement.
URGE Hillel to remove employees like Rabbi Jenny Solomon with BDS associations.
URGE Hillel to vet all future hires to prevent Hillel from giving voice to those who would promote anti-Semitism by demonizing, delegitimizing, and applying a double standard to Israel.
Please SIGN and SHARE this petition.
If Rabbi Jenny's name sounds familiar, perhaps it's because she's the spouse of Rabbi Eric (Rabbi and Rabbi Solomon? Rabbi and Rabba Solomon? Rabbis Solomon?), who was recently forced by his congregation to drop a plan to take them on an anti-Israel tour run by Breaking the Silence.

For those of you who have forgotten 'Breaking the Silence,' they are an organization that claims to be dedicated to exposing IDF abuses of 'Palestinians' in Judea and Samaria. They are funded by European governments, by the European Union (which awarded them the prestigious Andrei Sakharov prize) and by private American citizens (as well as by UNICEF and OxFam). 'Breaking the Silence' interviews discharged IDF soldiers and debriefs them regarding their IDF service. Or so they claim. It now seems that they do a lot more.

And in case you were wondering, of course George Soros funds Breaking the Silence. Eli Lake disclosed that last week.
The 2013 document describes the "toxic atmosphere" in 2000 and 2001 when the foundation began its work in the Middle East, and how this environment could lead to "politically motivated investigations" from either the Bush administration or what it calls "pro-Israel entities." Soros himself was worried about George W. Bush. In 2006, he said the president's communications strategy reminded him of Nazi and Communist propaganda. Hence his foundations took a "cautious approach."
"For a variety of reasons we wanted to construct a diversified portfolio of grants dealing with Israel and Palestine, funding both Israeli Jewish and (Palestinian Citizens of Israel) groups as well as building a portfolio of Palestinian grants and in all cases to maintain a low profile and relative distance –particularly on the advocacy front," the 2013 paper says.
Some of this was known before. I reported in 2010 that the liberal Jewish group J Street had received Soros money but had denied receiving it to the press and on its website. In 2013, the pro-Israel group NGO Monitor issued a report on Soros funding for Israeli and Palestinian activists covered in the documents released this week.
Still, let's take a minute here to savor the irony. An outfit that promotes the "open society" is shielding its efforts to influence public policy. It's true that plenty of foundations take a similar sub rosa approach to funding advocacy work in Washington.
But those foundations are not named for Karl Popper's famous defense of liberal democracies. It's enough to make you wish there was a new Open Society Foundations to expose the old one.
The group that leaked these documents is mysterious. It's called DCLeaks.com, and it says it's a project of "hacktivists" committed to many of the same principles espoused by Popper and Soros.
Rebecca Beyer, a communications officer for Open Society, confirmed to me Monday that documents were removed from an online forum used by the staff of the foundation and its partners. She said the breach was reported to the FBI. "The materials reflect big-picture strategies over several years from the Open Society Foundations network, which supports human rights, democratic practice, economic advancement, and the rule of law in more than 100 countries around the world."
When it comes to Israel, that translates into funding organizations like Breaking the Silence, a group of Israeli ex-soldiers who tour Europe and the U.S. to discuss the Israel Defense Force's war crimes. The document says that between 2012 and 2014, the Open Society Foundations gave this group $100,000 -- a significant donation for a group that in 2012 had a budget of only $841,410.
Emphasis mine. I wonder whether Soros also contributes to Rabbi and Rabba Solomon's salaries. Hmmm.

Time for Hillel to clean house. 

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Wednesday, August 24, 2016

That very special brand of UK anti-Semitism

Can you imagine something like this happening at any sporting event in the United States? (The only country in which I attend sporting events).

Welcome to Scotland where Celtic - one of the local soccer teams and NOT related to my beloved Boston Celtics - has just been fined by UEFA, the European soccer governing body for the eighth time in the last five seasons for their fans' insistence on showing their love for the 'Palestinians,' especially at games involving Israeli teams (this one was against HaPoel Beer Sheva). The fans' response has been to raise more than the amount of the fine (£136,000) through GoFundMe in just two days.
The fans waved more than a 100 Palestinian flags at the match last week in spite of prior warnings, breaching UEFA rules on political statements at matches.

The online 'gofundme' fundraising page was launched shortly after the charge from UEFA and shared via social media as #MatchTheFineForPalestine.

UEFA considers the Palestinian flag an "illicit banner" and according to the group's rules and regulations, bans all messages that are of a "political, ideological, religious, offensive or provocative nature."

According to the BBC, the club has been penalized at least eight times in the past five seasons for fan misconduct.

The Celtic group affiliates itself with the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement, which it hails as “inspiring and unstoppable.”

According to the Facebook page which organized the protest, an Israeli soccer team should not be allowed to participate in the soccer competition “due to the system of apartheid laws and practices including religious- and ethnic-based colonization, military occupation and segregation of what remains of Palestinian land and over 90 laws which discriminate against indigenous Palestinians who make up 20 percent of the population of current-day Israel.”

The soccer club is due to present their case at a disciplinary hearing on the 22nd of September.
What do soccer fans (who from what I hear from friends in the UK often come to games drunk out of their minds) care about the 'Palestinians'? It's not about the 'Palestinians.' It's about hating the Jews. 

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The Manchurian money transfer

Greetings from Paris. I'm on my way home.

The Obama administration is stonewalling a Congressional inquiry that's looking into how the 'other $1.3 billion' in ransom money got paid over to Iran.
The Departments of State, Treasury, and Justice have all rebuffed a congressional probe into the circumstances surrounding the $1.3 billion payment to Iran, which is part of an additional $400 million cash payout that occurred just prior to the release of several U.S. hostages and led to accusations that the administration had paid Iran a ransom.
The Obama administration has admitted in recent days that the $400 million cash delivery to Iran was part of an effort to secure the release of these American hostages, raising further questions on Capitol Hill about White House efforts to suppress these details from the public.
...
The administration is also withholding key details about the payment from leading members of Congress, including Sens. Ted Cruz (R., Texas) and Mike Lee (R., Utah), who launched an inquiry into the matter earlier this month.
The Departments of State, Treasury, and Justice all failed to respond to the inquiry by Monday’s deadline, according to congressional sources tracking the matter.
“The already bizarre circumstances surrounding the $1.7 billion payment to the Islamic Republic have only gotten stranger in the weeks since we learned of the $400 million in cash that was sent to the Iranian regime last January 16th,” Cruz said to the Free Beacon. “If this payment was, as the Obama administration insists, a straightforward settlement of an old debt that it would have cost America more to contest, why all the secrecy?”
The State Department said it does not know how the remaining $1.3 billion was transferred or to whom it was transferred. Cruz described this disclosure as “confounding.”
...
“While we are deeply concerned about the national security implications of the administration’s cash-for-hostages scheme, especially in light of reports that Iran has already arrested additional Americans, the purpose of this letter is to inquire about the legality of the payment,” the senators wrote in an Aug. 12 letter.
“It is imperative that the administration provide a full accounting of its conduct with respect to the $400 million cash payment to Iran,” they wrote. “If the administration violated the law, then Congress and the American people should be made aware of it so that they can hold the appropriate officials accountable and take whatever steps necessary to strengthen the law and prevent any reoccurrence.”
While the administration has remained silent about the circumstances surrounding the payment, investigative reporter Claudia Rosett recently disclosed that the Treasury Department transferred just under $1.3 billion to the State Department in 13 “large identical sums.”
The funds, allocated for “foreign claims,” could shine a light on how the administration moved taxpayer funds into the State Department’s purview in order to provide the additional payment to Iran.
In 13 individual payments of $99,999,999.99, the Treasury Department moved a total of 1,299,999,999.87, which roughly amounts to the remaining money owed to Iran.
All of this reminds me of some of the other mysteries of the Manchurian candidate Barack Hussein Obama. His birth certificate. His college transcript. Obamacare's 'after we pass the bill, you can read the bill.' The 'secret negotiations' (and the doctoring of a State Department press briefing about them) and secret agreements with Iran. There's a pattern here and it's not a pretty one. It's a pattern of dishonesty. And it's a pattern that's being continued by Hillary Clinton.

When will it end?

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Tuesday, August 23, 2016

'Palestinian police' beat police shooter to death

Today is a travel day - but I'm not traveling until this evening.

The 'Palestinian police' beat to death Ahmad Izz Halaweh, a 'Palestinian' who was arrested for being involved in shooting two 'Palestinian police' to death in Shchem (Nablus). It goes without saying that Hamas is claiming that Halaweh's death constitutes a 'new height' of 'collaboration with Israel' as if Israel cares about an inter-'Palestinian' fight in a 'Palestinian' city.
Ahmad Izz Halaweh, the main suspect in a shooting by several gunmen last week which left two Palestinian policemen dead, was arrested during predawn raids in the Old City of Nablus in the northern occupied West Bank on Tuesday and taken to the Juneid security compound, where he was attacked and severely beaten by security officers.
Governor of Nablus Akram Rujoub later pronounced him dead. 
A graphic photo shared on social media of Halaweh after the brutal attack showed his face, neck, and shoulders badly bruised and swollen.
Halaweh, reportedly the most prominent Nablus-area leader of Fatah's military wing the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, was the third civilian to be killed by Palestinian security officers following Thursday’s shooting. 
Huh? A leader of the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade is a 'civilian'?
Shortly after Halaweh’s killing, Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah announced that a special committee would be formed to look into Halaweh’s death and publicly share the results of the investigation, calling the situation “exceptional.”
Good luck with that.... 
Hamdallah also called on Palestinians wanted by Palestinian police to turn themselves in.
Yes, 'turn yourselves in or we will kill you. But just give them a 'state' and they'll stop behaving this way. Right....

Meanwhile, while you're passing the popcorn, here comes the United Nations....
In a statement released Tuesday afternoon, James Heenan, the head of the UN Human Rights Office in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, said the UN agency was “extremely concerned about the apparent extrajudicial execution."
"We welcome the prompt announcement of an investigation into the killing by Prime Minister Hamdallah, and urge the Palestinian authorities to hold independent investigations into the string of events since last week that have now seen five people lose their lives." Heenan insisted that the security officers involved in the “unlawful killings” be "brought to justice and be suspended, pending the completion of the investigation."  
“There is no place for such acts in a State of Palestine that seeks to abide by international human rights law," Heenan said, concluding that "Our Office will follow this case closely.”
State of what? Good luck with that too....

There's lots more - read the whole thing.

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Monday, August 22, 2016

The Donald Trump video every Jew must watch

Ezra Levant debunks the 'Trump as anti-Semite' meme.

Let's go to the videotape (Hat Tip: Zvi S).



I won't go to the halachic (Jewish law) implications of Trump's kids all marrying or dating Jews, but the point that Trump doesn't hate Jews seems well-taken.

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Friday, the rabbi canceled his trip

The rabbi of Beth Meyer Synagogue in Raleigh, North Carolina announced on Friday that the trip to Arafat's tomb is off.
On Friday, August 19, 2016, 10:15 AM, Beth Meyer Synagogue wrote:
August 19, 2016 
Shalom Beth Meyer Family, 
I write to you with a very heavy heart. 
The past few weeks have been extraordinarily painful for me, Rabbi Jenny, our congregation's leaders, and many in the Beth Meyer family and extended Jewish community. This letter - which admittedly is quite lengthy - is designed to provide a detailed explanation of how this situation came about and how I have chosen to resolve it. 
During my time at Beth Meyer, I have led four "pilgrimage" trips to Israel that visited many of the historic and spiritually-rich sites that lift the soul and build one's love for and connection to the State of Israel. These tours included stops at sites that illustrate the threats and precarious security issues Israel faces on a daily basis. I will continue to offer such tours in the future.  
A few months ago, I invited Beth Meyer members to participate in a trip to Israel and the West Bank under the auspices of MEJDI Tours, a company that provides customized educational tours in regions worldwide suffering from conflict. In this case, the tour was to be a "dual-narrative" tour with both Israeli and Palestinian tour guides that would visit Israel and the West Bank. 
This process began some two years ago when I first heard of MEJDI Tours and began to look into the organization. I learned that MEJDI, in the past, has partnered with the Israeli Ministry of Tourism, the Israeli Foreign Ministry, Israeli educational institutions and numerous American synagogues. In addition, MEJDI has been featured in a range of respected media outlets, including  Haaretz, Forbes and National Geographic Explorer.  
After thoroughly researching MEJDI's credentials with rabbis and Jewish leaders across the U.S. and Israel, I was comfortable that MEJDI was, in fact, a non-partisan tour operator that offers individuals unique immersive experiences to learn about complex issues first-hand. MEJDI does not preach or support any specific agenda or form of hate, violence or terror. Rather, it is an apolitical organization that believes increased education and understanding can help build bridges across cultures and stimulate peace. 
While studying in Israel in the summer of 2015, I took the opportunity to tour the West Bank in a group that had with it a Palestinian MEJDI guide. It was, to say the least, a profound (and often surprising) experience that allowed me to hear perspectives few of us ever hear. For example, the guide was highly critical of the Palestinian Authority and its leaders, both past and present. He condemned violence by Palestinians and emphasized that he "despises Hamas." When I asked challenging questions, his responses recognized weaknesses in Palestinian positions. Moreover, he mocked the backwardness of the Arab world, as well as its lack of support for human rights and democracy. And, while he did criticize a number of Israeli government policies, his words were balanced, thoughtful and nuanced.  
After reviewing this idea with Beth Meyer's leaders and securing their approval, I invited the Beth Meyer family to participate in a MEJDI tour next spring. I wholeheartedly believed I was helping to provide a rare opportunity for seasoned Israel travelers to learn about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in a broader, deeper way. With expert guides who would be both supportive and critical of their own government's policies, I hoped participants would gain new insights and hear from peace-makers working on the ground to make a difference. I thought, perhaps naively, that this MEJDI tour would offer a different kind of experience for Zionist, Israel-loving Jews who want to explore the many intricacies of this terrible conflict.  
For some in the congregation, there was immediate interest in participating and many quickly submitted their deposits. For others, there was no interest at all. Some congregants asked thoughtful questions, and others criticized my attempt to organize such a trip due to their belief that the itinerary was unbalanced. And there were some who expressed serious concerns about the potential damage the tour could cause the Beth Meyer community and the image of the State of Israel. 
While my intentions were pure, my heart broke as I listened to the pain my actions had caused some congregants. I listened carefully to this feedback and discussed what I heard with Rabbi Jenny and synagogue leaders. 
After deep reflection and soul-searching, I have decided to cancel the trip. To anyone who feels confused, hurt or upset on account of my actions, I sincerely apologize and ask your forgiveness. 
Please know my decision was not made because I don't believe in the tour's value - I do. Nor was it made because a handful of individuals outside of our holy congregation - none of whom have ever talked or met with me - spread inaccurate and misleading information about Rabbi Jenny and me that spawned threats of personal violence. In this season of Tisha B'Av when we remember the many tragedies of our people, personally experiencing this kind of sinat hinam (baseless hatred) was especially painful. 
Rather, I made this decision because I deeply love Beth Meyer and what we, as a family, have built these past 11+ years. And I want to emphasize that my love embraces each and every one of you, regardless of where you land on the spiritual, social or political spectra. I am touched that so many congregants pleaded with me to move forward as planned, but I cannot - and will not - do anything that jeopardizes the integrity of the Beth Meyer family. 
I want to thank everyone who has shared their thoughts with me about this issue. Most particularly, I want to acknowledge the input and guidance I received from our President Eric Lamb, the Beth Meyer Synagogue Executive Board, lay leaders and, of course, my wife and partner, Jenny.  
Just as the Torah teaches that God created the world with immense variety, so too my vision of our congregation is one where we accept and celebrate both the common bonds and differences among us. Civil discussion, respectful debate and honoring diverse opinions are Jewish values that our people have embraced for millennia. They are the values that form the foundation of my rabbinate, and they are the values that make Beth Meyer such a welcoming community. 
When appropriate and rooted in Jewish values, I will continue to take public positions on issues where I believe my contribution can be constructive. I want to stress, however, that I do not and never will expect to have consensus across our membership on any issue, least of all, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. (In fact, if all I heard was a unanimous "Amen," I would think something was wrong. It wouldn't be Jewish, and it wouldn't be the Beth Meyer that I cherish!) 
At some point in the future, perhaps, our congregation may again consider an educational initiative such as a MEJDI tour. But that would happen only after there has been ample opportunity for all interested members to learn about the opportunity and discuss it thoroughly with input from a broad cross-section of our members. 
In that spirit, I invite anyone who has questions about this situation or would like to share any other concerns to contact me via e-mail (rabbi@bethmeyer.org ) or phone (919.848.1420). I will be delighted to sit down and hear your thoughts and ideas. 
This episode, though challenging, has been a valuable learning experience for all of us. I pray that we use it to deepen the bonds we share and inspire us to continue nurturing the Beth Meyer family and strengthening our commitment to and love of God, the Torah, the Jewish people, the State of Israel and one another. 
At this moment, perhaps more than ever, I thank God and each of you for the privilege of serving as Beth Meyer's rabbi. Rabbi Jenny and I, along with our entire family, look forward to welcoming the New Year with our holy, hamish (warm) congregation at the High Holy Days. 
B'ahavah (With love),
Rabbi Eric Solomon
Something tells me there may still be a trip in the future....

The problem with trying to 'understand the other' is that it only works if it's a two-way street. In Israel, much of our population spent 1993-2000 trying to 'understand the other.' Unfortunately, it was never a two-way street (and we suffered plenty of terror attacks during that period) and it ended in a full-blown intifadeh that left hundreds of Israelis dead, wounded, widowed and orphaned.

The 'conflict' is insoluble because only one side is interested in a solution. Most Israelis now have had enough pain inflicted on them that they get that. I hope the rest of world Jewry comes around without suffering all the pain that we suffered.

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Friday, August 19, 2016

Oh my... US moving nukes from Turkey to Romania

A report on a Belgian website claims that the United States is in the process of moving some 20+ nuclear weapons from the Incirlik base in Turkey to Romania.
EXCLUSIVE/ Two independent sources told EurActiv.com that the US has started transferring nuclear weapons stationed in Turkey to Romania, against the background of worsening relations between Washington and Ankara.
According to one of the sources, the transfer has been very challenging in technical and political terms.
“It’s not easy to move 20+ nukes,” said the source, on conditions of anonymity.
According to a recent report by the Simson Center, since the Cold War, some 50 US tactical nuclear weapons have been stationed at Turkey’s Incirlik air base, approximately 100 kilometres from the Syrian border.
During the failed coup in Turkey in July, Incirlik’s power was cut, and the Turkish government prohibited US aircraft from flying in or out. Eventually, the base commander was arrested and implicated in the coup. Whether the US could have maintained control of the weapons in the event of a protracted civil conflict in Turkey is an unanswerable question, the report says.
Another source told EurActiv.com that the US-Turkey relations had deteriorated so much following the coup that Washington no longer trusted Ankara to host the weapons. The American weapons are being moved to the Deveselu air base in Romania, the source said.
Deveselu, near the city of Caracal, is the new home of the US missile shield, which has infuriated Russia.
The Romanians are denying the story. And of course, no one else is confirming it.
According to practice dating from the Cold War, leaked information regarding the presence of US nuclear weapons on European soil has never been officially confirmed. It is, however, public knowledge that Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany and Italy host US nuclear weapons.
From Israel's perspective, anything that gets nuclear weapons away from Turkey is good for the Jews. 

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The love affair is over....

In case you're wondering, I'm in Boston again and the Sabbath doesn't start here for about another seven hours.

Compare the picture above to the tweet below. The love affair is over. Obama has 'earned' Erdogan's respect.

#ThanksObama
 Wonder what's happening with the 'reconciliation with Israel.....

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