Isranet Daily Briefing: “Wednesday’s News of the week in Review” (July 3, 2019)

Canada Day Fire works Holiday (Source: Pixabay)
Rex Murphy: Canada was Built — and on July 1, We Celebrate that Inheritance
Rex Murphy
National Post, June 28, 2019It’s the July 1st Canada Day weekend. It should be a great time.I presume our government is agreeable to the idea of celebrating the country it heads. That caution springs from the tepid and uninspiring performance it gave on the landmark occasion of our 150th anniversary. Any other nation, at peace, prosperous, with an earned reputation for goodwill in foreign relations and moderation at home, would have put on a show to shame Olympic spectacles and blasted Hosannas to the globe.But either through a kind of careless meekness or perhaps a vague fear of being too showily patriotic (an emotion many shun as unenlightened these days) the government turned what should have been a birthday party for the ages into a frigid pantomime, something with less buzz than an after-party for the Geminis or (shudder) the annual Parliamentary Press Gallery dinner. Hardly a few have noted the Raptors’ (a team staffed by Americans, winning an American title) recent victory party as the “real” celebration we didn’t have two years back. A columnist in “the other place” put it very finely: “Everyone was feeling part of something big. Canada’s 150th birthday was a church tea compared with this blowout.”Toronto Raptors fans wave to players on open-top buses during a parade through downtown Toronto to celebrate their NBA title, on June 17, 2019. Will it be better this time? We’ll see. … [To read the full article, click the following LINK – Ed.]







“A truly powerful & moving moment placing a note of reflection in the Western Wall – the focus of Jewish worship for generations.” — Great Britain Home Secretary Sajid Javid on visiting the Western Wall on Monday (July 1) as part of his visit to Israel following a 19-year period in which no senior minister of the British government had visited Jerusalem or the Western Wall. (Jewish Press, July 1, 2019)

“Shabiba is prepared for every eventuality, and that its members who ignited the first Intifada and the Al-Aqsa Intifada are still capable of making the ground burn under the feet of the tyrants.” — Fatah Revolutionary Council member and Shabiba [Fatah Youth] Secretary-General Hassan Faraj said in response to presidential advisory Jared Kushner’s meeting in Bahrain where he unveiled part one of President Trump’s peace plan that calls for an infusion of $50 billion into the Palestinian economy. (Jewish Press, July 1, 2019)

“The deal of the century has one major advantage: it has an economic framework for the development of the entire region, and especially for the Palestinians. We and other countries are willing to make enormous investments in this – amounts that the Palestinians never dreamed of getting. If this framework gets going, they will get real independence, good education, employment, a healthy economy, and won’t be dependent on charity.” – Saudi Arabian diplomat as regards the Trump peace initiative. (Globes, June 23, 2019)

“If America attacks us, Israel will survive for less than half an hour.”– said Mojtaba Zonnour, chairman of the National Security and Foreign Policy Committee of the Iranian parliament, speaking on Al-Alam TV. (WIN, July 2, 2019)

“I am very familiar with Israel’s capabilities. There isn’t a single method of action that I didn’t participate in during my tenure. My test was to meet the very important challenge concerning the fate of the State of Israel and to prepare the IDF to act in every area and every place. I can tell you with confidence that when I establish the government, Iran will not have nuclear weapons. Against an enemy, like Iran, it’s forbidden to blink, and you have to do what’s necessary when it’s necessary.” – said former IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz, leader of Israel’s main opposition party, Blue and White.  (WIN, July 2, 2019)

 “The religious pre-military academies have produced some of the courageous fighters. But what is happening today is that the pre-military academies have turned into militias.”  — MK Avigdor Liberman, a former defense minister whose resignation last November resulted in the April Knesset election and whose refusal to sign an agreement to join a new government after that vote has led to another parliamentary election scheduled for September 17.  He further explained that when he asked yeshiva students which directive they would honor if they received an order from their commander, but their rabbi said the opposite, “Many of them said that ‘of course I would respect the military order,’ but some of them said clearly that they would act according to the rabbi’s directive,”(WIN, July 2, 2019)

 “It’s from a Pride event in Massachusetts, where a group of IfNotNow members asked Bernie Sanders to take a picture with us and our sign that read ‘Anti-Occupation Jews.’ My heart was racing. And then, Bernie said ‘yes’! You can see the huge smile on my face as we rushed into the picture.” – said IfNotNow New Hampshire Fellow Ema Glazer referring to a photo of herself and Bernie Sanders, as well as other young members of IFNotNow behind a sign that reads “Jews Against the Occupation.” (Jewish Press, July 1, 2019)





FOR THE FIRST TIME, CANADA ADDS WHITE SUPREMACISTS AND NEO-NAZI GROUPS TO ITS TERROR ORGANIZATION LIST(Ottawa) — Blood and Honour and Combat 18 were labeled terrorist entities, joining about 60 groups that include al-Qaeda, Boko Haram, and the Islamic State. Under the designation, the groups could have their assets seized and organizations that aid in the terrorist activities would be subject to criminal penalties. (CNN, June 28, 2019)


SWEDEN TO HOST 2020 ANTISEMITISM CONFERENCE TO COMMEMORATE THE HOLOCAUST(Malmo) — This gathering of heads of state and governments is planned for October 27-28, 2020 and is to be held in Sweden’s third-largest city, Malmö. A perplexing announcement, antisemitism scholar Manfred Gerstenfeld writes, given that Sweden has made no serious efforts to fight antisemitism.  On the contrary, Sweden has a long history of answered antisemitic incidents. The Board of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) in Sweden voted in 2016 to accept the definition of antisemitism – yet the country does not accept the definition domestically (while the UK, Germany, Austria, Israel, and several other countries do). Extreme manifestations of antisemitism, unequaled elsewhere, have taken place in Sweden. The Jewish community of the Swedish town of Umea had to disband entirely because it was threatened by neo-Nazis and harassed by radical Muslims. (BESA, July 2, 2019)


CANADIAN GOVERNMENT ADOPTS IHRA DEFINITION OF ANTISEMITISM (Ottawa) — The government of Canada announced that it will formally adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) definition of antisemitism as part of its anti-racism strategy, according to Pablo Rodriguez, the minister of Canadian heritage and multiculturalism. The ministry unveiled Building a Foundation for Change: Canada’s Anti-Racism Strategy 2019–2022, “which helps advance the government of Canada’s vision of fostering and promoting a more inclusive and equitable country for all Canadians,” a statement from Rodriguez’s office read. (Canadian Jewish News, June 25, 2019)


ON FRINGES OF PEACE CONFAB, RARE PRAYER SERVICE BRINGS BAHRAIN SYNAGOGUE TO LIFE (Bahrain) — Businessmen, reporters, five rabbis, and a senior White House official held rare morning prayers at the only officially declared synagogue in the Gulf that was once home to a thriving Jewish community. At the end of the service, which took place on the sidelines of the US administration’s economic peace workshop held in the Bahraini capital Manama, the men, clad in prayer shawls and phylacteries, broke out in song, walking around the bimah and singing “Am Yisrael Chai” — the people of Israel live. (Times of Israel, June 26, 2019)


UK LABOUR PARTY’S READMISSION OF CORBYN ALLY ACCUSED OF ANTISEMITISM CALLED ‘SLAP IN FACE’ TO JEWISH COMMUNITY(London) — A Labour member of the British Parliament and arch-ally of far-left leader Jeremy Corbyn was welcomed back into the party following a brief suspension over a remark that Labour had been “too apologetic” over the antisemitism scandals that plagued its ranks since Corbyn took charge in 2015. A three-person internal committee decided to reject a recommendation by party officials to refer Chris Williamson — who represents the constituency of Derby North in central England — to the next stage of a disciplinary process. (Algemeiner, June 26, 2019)


ARGENTINE FOREIGN MINISTER REITERATES JUSTICE CALL FOR VICTIMS OF 1994 AMIA JEWISH CENTER BOMBING(Argentina) — Argentina’s foreign minister has reiterated his country’s determination to bring to trial the Iranian-backed terrorists responsible for the July 1994 bombing of the AMIA Jewish center in Buenos Aires — the worst terrorist atrocity in the country’s history, in which 85 people were killed and over 300 wounded. He addressed a gathering at the United Nations in New York this week to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the AMIA atrocity. (Algemeiner, June 26, 2019)


LEGENDARY BRAZILIAN MUSICIAN MILTON NASCIMENTO ISSUES STUNNING REBUKE TO BDS MOVEMENT BEFORE TEL AVIV CONCERT (Tel Aviv) — Brazilian music superstar Milton Nascimento issued a sharp rebuke to the anti-Israel BDS movement, which sought to stop him from playing a concert in Tel Aviv, saying, “I will never abandon my public.” Nascimento is a legendary artist in Brazil, noted for his unusual synthesis of various Brazilian and international music styles, including samba, jazz, pop, and even heavy metal. Calls had intensified in recent weeks, under the aegis of the BDS movement, for Nascimento to cancel the Tel Aviv show. (Algemeiner, June 30, 2019)


IAEA CONFIRMS IRAN VIOLATED JCPOA NUCLEAR DEAL: URANIUM STOCKPILE EXCEEDS 300 KG (Tehran) The United Nations International Atomic Energy Agency has confirmed a claim by Iran that it amassed a stockpile of more than 300 kilograms of uranium enriched to 3.67 percent, in violation of the JCPOA (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action) nuclear deal it signed with world powers in 2015.  (Jewish Press, July 1, 2019)


SYRIA REPORTS: MULTIPLE DEAD, ‘MANY WOUNDED’ IN MULTI-PRONGED ISRAELI ATTACK (Syria) — Syrian state media reported after midnight that Israeli warplanes fired missiles at Iranian and Hezbollah military targets in the town of Kiswah southwest of Damascus, in Sahnaya, a neighborhood of the capital, in Homs and in Tartous, both about 160 kilometers to the north. Four people were killed, and 21 others were injured.  (Jewish Press, July 1, 2019)


36 ANTI ICE JEWISH ACTIVISTS ARRESTED IN ELIZABETH DETENTION CENTER(New Jersey) — Thirty-six Jewish demonstrators from the Never Again Action group were arrested during a protest at an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention center in New Jersey. Calling to “never let anything like the Holocaust happen again,” 200 Jewish protesters converged on the holding facility for undocumented migrants at the Elizabeth Detention Center. (Jewish Press, July 1, 2019)


DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION TO PROBE ANTI-ISRAEL BIAS AT NORTH CAROLINA CONFERENCE ON GAZA (Washington) — Rep. George Holding, R-N.C., called on the department to check into the late March conference co-sponsored by Duke University and the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill held at the latter campus. Holding said he had seen “reports of severe anti-Israeli bias and antisemitic rhetoric at the taxpayer-funded conference,” the Raleigh News & Observer reported. (JTA, June 19, 2019)


TEVA REACHES $85 MILLION SETTLEMENT WITH OKLAHOMA IN OPIOID ABUSE SUIT(Oklahoma) — Israeli drug maker Teva will pay Oklahoma $85 million in a settlement reached in May and approved by a state court in an opioid abuse suit. Teva has been accused of worsening the opioid crisis there. (Jewish Press, June 25, 2019)


BELGIAN POLICE ARREST SUSPECT IN PLOT TO ATTACK US EMBASSY IN BRUSSELS (Brussels) — The suspect – Mr. G – was arrested by the anti-terrorist unit of the Brussels Federal Police, according to Belgian prosecutors. He was arraigned before an investigating judge on Monday morning. (Jewish Press, June 25, 2019)


IAF, US AIR FORCE, AND ROYAL AIR FORCE CONCLUDE FIRST-EVER JOINT F-35 DRILL (United Arab Emirates) — The exercise took place during IAF week, marking 71 years since the establishment of the Israeli Air Force. (Jewish Press, June 26, 2019)


ISRAELI COMPANY WINS BID TO HELP SECURE US BORDER(Arizona) — Israeli defense electronics company Elbit Systems announced that its U.S. subsidiary has been awarded a $26 million contract by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection to install a multi-sensor system to monitor the U.S.-Mexico border. According to a report in the Israeli financial daily Globes, Elbit will install an Integrated Fixed Towers (IFT) system in Arizona. (Jewish Press, June 26, 2019)


JEWISH INVENTOR OF THE PILL GEORGE ROSENKRANZ DEAD AT 103, CHANGED SOCIETY WITH HELP FROM 3 OTHER JEWISH SCIENTISTS (Atherton, CA) — George Rosenkranz, who in the early 1950s, together with another Jewish chemist, Carl Djerassi (both refugees from Nazi-occupied Europe), synthesized the progesterone that was to be used in one of the first two combined oral contraceptive pills, and is still used every day by millions of women around the world, passed away on Sunday, two months short of his 103rd birthday.  (Jewish Press, June 24, 2019)


MAJOR NEUROLOGICAL STUDY REVEALS LONG-TERM MENTAL HEALTH IMPACT OF HOLOCAUST ON SURVIVORS AND THEIR DESCENDANTS(Oslo) — The study, issued at the 5th Congress of the European Academy of Neurology (EAN) — an umbrella body for neurology researchers and professionals across the continent — stated that “surviving the Holocaust had a life-long psychological and biological effect with grey matter reduction affecting the parts of their brain responsible for stress response, memory, motivation, emotion, learning, and behavior.” The EAN’s research marks an important step forward for the emerging science of epigenetics, which studies whether trauma-induced DNA methylation modifications can be passed from traumatized individuals to subsequent generations of offspring. (Algemeiner, July 1,  2019)


AUSCHWITZ EXHIBIT EXAMINES FAITH AS A MECHANISM FOR SURVIVAL DURING THE HOLOCAUST(Poland) — An exhibition that offers the public a glimpse into the role of faith as a mechanism for survival during the Holocaust opened at the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum in Poland. “Through the Lens of Faith” was arranged and organized by the Amud Aish Memorial Museum in New York, which was founded by Jewish philanthropists and businessman Elly Kleinman, and works to present the experiences of Holocaust victims and survivors, and how faith helped them persevere. “Through the Lens of Faith” will run through 2020 to coincide with the 75th anniversary of the death camp’s liberation by the Soviet Red Army. (WIN, July 2, 2019)