WEDNESDAY’S “NEWS IN REVIEW” ROUND-UP Posted on July 12, 2017 Printer Friendly On Topic Links Poland and the West: Giulio Meotti, Arutz Sheva, July 7, 2017 Linda Sarsour’s Jihad: Lee Smith, Tablet, July 7, 2017 Mosul Liberation Will Not be End of IS: Ali Hashem, Al-Monitor, July 8, 2017 As Italy Turns Into a Migrants’ Trap, Help From EU Falls Short: Eric Reguly, Globe & Mail, July 5, 2017 WEEKLY QUOTES “We have to remember that our defense is not just a commitment of money, it is a commitment of will. Because as the Polish experience reminds us, the defense of the West ultimately rests not only on means but also on the will of its people to prevail and be successful and get what you have to have. The fundamental question of our time is whether the West has the will to survive. Do we have the confidence in our values to defend them at any cost? Do we have enough respect for our citizens to protect our borders? Do we have the desire and the courage to preserve our civilization in the face of those who would subvert and destroy it? We can have the largest economies and the most lethal weapons anywhere on Earth, but if we do not have strong families and strong values, then we will be weak and we will not survive. — President Donald Trump. In a speech in Warsaw which recounted Poland's struggles under Nazi occupation and Communism, Trump said the country was a powerful "symbol of freedom."(Telegraph, July 6, 2017) “I hope that … when we stand up to those who oppress our communities, that Allah accepts from us that as a form of jihad, that we are struggling against tyrants and rulers not only abroad in the Middle East or on the other side of the world, but here in these United States of America, where you have fascists and white supremacists and Islamophobes reigning in the White House.” — Linda Sarsour, co-chair of the National Women’s March. Sarsour said she was advocating solely for peaceful, nonviolent dissent. But since videos of the speech began circulating, conservative media outlets have accused the activist of urging Muslims to wage a holy war against the Trump administration. Some on social media argued that by using the word “jihad” Sarsour should have known the general public would interpret it as a violent term connected to Islamic extremism. (Washington Post, July 7, 2017) “Sarsour was no more calling for Trump’s death than Kathy Griffin was when she posed for a picture with a mask of the president’s decapitated head. And just like the comedienne, Sarsour wanted to have it both ways—get lots of attention for having done something sensational, and then play the role of victim when some of the attention invariably turned critical. What Sarsour did was raise the ante and the stakes—by putting it in the context of Arab political discourse…Sarsour’s speech marks a further degradation of American political discourse, which…has taken on a peculiarly Arab cast. It’s not enough to oppose Trump’s policies—no, instead it’s a “resistance,” mimicking the same reckless and ignorant energies that have made the last century of Middle Eastern politics a charnel house. Arab and Muslims have and will continue to make interesting and useful contributions to American life. Importing from the region the language and ethos of Middle Eastern political culture is not one of them.” — Lee Smith (Tablet, July 7, 2017) “The UNESCO vote on Hebron is tragic on several levels. It represents an affront to history…It undermines the trust that is needed for the Israeli-Palestinian peace process to be successful, and it further discredits an already highly questionable UN agency. Today’s vote does no one any good and causes much harm…The United States is currently evaluating the appropriate level of its continued engagement at UNESCO.” — US Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley. In a secret ballot held at the World Heritage Committee’s 41st annual summit, UNESCO voted twelve to three in favor of declaring the Holy City of Hebron and the Cave of the Patriarchs “Palestinian world heritage sites”. The resolution described a Muslim history of the city while ignoring the Biblical narrative describing 3,000 years of Jewish connection to the site. Six countries abstained from the controversial vote which, at the request of Poland, Croatia, and Jamaica, was a secret ballot; a first for such a vote. The Palestinian Authority initiated the UNESCO vote, which also declared the city the third site on UNESCO’s list of endangered World Heritage sites that are located in ‘Palestine’. (Breaking Israel News, July 9, 2017) “This time they determined that the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron is a Palestinian site, i.e. not Jewish, and that the site is in danger. Not a ‘Jewish’ site?!” — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Netanyahu described the UNESCO decision as “delusional.” The prime minister’s office said Israel would further reduce the membership fees it pays to the United Nations by $1 million a year and would use the funds to establish a Jewish People’s heritage museum in Hebron. (New York Times, July 7, 2017) “Instead of protecting our shared history and values, UNESCO has become the mouthpiece for global Jew Hatred…Their latest motion which suggests that Hebron and the Cave of the Patriarchs are Palestinian Heritage sites is both pathetic and offensive to history and the billions of Jews and Christians worldwide…There can be no place for such hatred within a world organization that exists to foster peace and understanding and protect history. It’s time to defund UNESCO once and for all.” — The World Council of Independent Christian Churches (WCICC). The organization is calling on member states of the UN to defund UNESCO in the wake of the passage of a resolution to declare the Cave of the Patriarchs and the Old City of Hebron to be World Heritage Sites in Danger, and under the authority of the PA. (Jewish Press, July 10, 2017) “I salute all of the martyrs’ families. I emphasize to them that their rights are protected, and we will continue our diligent work with the relevant PLO institutions to fulfill our basic, humanitarian, and national obligations towards them. We remember the sacrifices and struggle of the pure martyrs, guardians of the land and identity who have turned our people’s cause into a historical epic of struggle and resolve.” — PA Prime Minister Rama Allahabad. For many years, the Palestinian Authority or one of its offshoots has been paying regular salaries to the families of dead or imprisoned terrorists. The 2016 PA budget says it now pays relatives of “martyrs” the equivalent of $183 million a year and families of imprisoned terrorists $135 million. According to the Times of Israel, the Palestinians have paid out $1.12 billion during the last four years to terrorists and their families. The money, all in U.S. dollars, comes from foreign aid grants. (National Post, July 7, 2017) “The best is to kill soldiers. That way they have guns and they’ll shoot me and kill me. But if I’m not able to kill soldiers, I’ll try settlers, guards – in other words any Israeli target – the important thing is that I will die and they will kill me, so that my children will receive a [PA] allowance and live happily.” — Khaled Rajoub, in a transcript of a 2014 Israel Police interrogation. Rajoub was caught after an unsuccessful attempt to murder Israelis. During interrogation, he explained that his motivation for the planned murder was so that he himself would also be killed and his family would then receive monthly payments from the Palestinian Authority. (Jewish Press, July 10, 2017) “I share the concerns of London’s Jewish community and others about support shown for Hezbollah, an illegal, proscribed and anti-Semitic organization, at the annual Al Quds Day march…I will continue to work with…communities across the capital to do everything in my power to crack down on extremism and ensure London’s Jewish communities feel safe and secure in London.” — London Mayor Sadiq Khan. Thousands of Hezbollah supporters marched through London waving the flag of the terrorist organization last month, ostensibly to “show solidarity with the Palestinian cause.” The “political wing” of the group has reportedly been granted status by the UK government as a legitimate charity via the Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC). Khan confirmed that he planned to write to Home Secretary Amber Rudd about the matter, urging a full ban on Hezbollah. However, there has been no further news, and no letter has been issued thus far. (Jewish Press, July 8, 2017) “If the BBC can get this wrong…it is little wonder that Israel finds it so hard to put aside the idea that some critics are motivated by something more sinister than political commentary.” — Lord Michael Grade, A former chairman of the BBC. In a speech before the House of Lords, Grade recalled that in its initial report of a lethal attack by three Palestinians on Israeli police officers in June, which resulted in the death of 23-year-old Israeli policewoman Hadas Malka, the BBC’s headline read, “Three Palestinians killed after deadly stabbing in Jerusalem.” Grade acknowledged that the network reacted to criticism by changing the headline to “Israeli policewoman stabbed to death in Jerusalem,” redirecting its focus to the victim of the attack, rather than its perpetrators. However, he said that the initial headline played a role in “the drip-drip effect of unqualified, un-contextualised singling out of Israel for criticism.” (United With Israel, July 9, 2017) “We will be breaking down the walls of fear…The last day of our Justice March is a new beginning, a new step.” — Kemal Kilicdaroglu, Turkey’s opposition leader. Kilicdaroglu told a protest rally that the country was living under dictatorship and pledged to keep challenging the crackdown launched by the authorities after last year’s failed military coup. Addressing hundreds of thousands of people, he said his 25-day march from Ankara to Istanbul was the first stage of a long campaign. Kilicdaroglu, head of the Republican People’s Party, launched his protest last month after the jailing of a fellow parliamentarian for 25 years on spying charges. About 50,000 people have been arrested and 150,000 state workers have been suspended. “The era we live in is a dictatorship,” Kilicdaroglu said. (Globe & Mail, July 9, 2017) “The West is chronically naïve when dealing with despots. We refuse to take their actions at face value, and are too willing to overlook their lies. It worked for North Korea, and it will almost certainly work with Iran as well. Does anyone truly believe, for instance, that Iran’s mullahs will prove much less fanatical than the Kims? We never hope for war. But when vital national and global interests are at stake, hard-line confrontation is sometimes the only option. Delaying that awful decision can sometimes make matters worse. Taking part in make-believe negotiations doesn’t help either. The reality of decisive military intervention may be the only way to check undemocratic rulers. President Donald Trump inherited this mess, and will, if nothing else, likely get despots around the world to re-evaluate how America is likely to respond to their threats. It’s likely too late in North Korea, but we can hope that a stronger and sooner response will prove successful elsewhere.” — Editorial (National Post, July 7, 2017) Contents SHORT TAKES IRAQI FORCES DECLARE VICTORY OVER I.S. IN MOSUL (Mosul) — Iraq’s prime minister entered the city of Mosul to declare victory in the nine-month battle for control of I.S.’s former stronghold, signaling the near end of the most grueling campaign against the group to date. Over the past three years since the I.S. leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi declared the existence of a “caliphate” in Mosul, his group has been driven out of 60 percent of the territory it controlled in both Iraq and Syria. But that still leaves it in control of land spanning the border of the two countries, including key towns such as Hawija, Tal Afar and Qaim in Iraq and most of the entire province of Deir al-Zour in Syria. (Washington Post, July 9, 2017) MONITOR SAYS IT HAS ‘CONFIRMED INFORMATION’ I.S. CHIEF KILLED (Damascus) — The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that it had “confirmed information” that I.S. leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has been killed. The report came just days after the Iraqi army recaptured the last sectors of the Iraqi city of Mosul. Russia said in June that it might have killed Baghdadi when one of its air strikes hit a gathering of I.S. commanders on the outskirts of the Syrian city of Raqqa. But Washington said it could not corroborate the death and Western and Iraqi officials have been sceptical. The Pentagon said it had no information to corroborate the reports. (Globe & Mail, July 11, 2017) US, RUSSIA ANNOUNCE SYRIA CEASE-FIRE (Hamburg) — The U.S. and Russia struck an agreement Friday on a cease-fire in southwest Syria, crowning President Trump's first meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. The cease-fire went into effect Sunday, according to U.S. officials and the Jordanian government, which is also involved in the deal. Israel also is part of the agreement, one U.S. official said. Like Jordan, Israel shares a border with the southern part of Syria and has been concerned about a spillover of violence as well as an amassing of Iranian-aligned forces in the south of the country. Previous cease-fires in Syria have collapsed or failed to reduce violence for long, and it was unclear whether this deal would be any better. (Fox News, July 7, 2017) DEADLY BOMBING IN EGYPTIAN ARMY OUTPOST CLAIMED BY I.S. (Cairo) —I.S. claimed responsibility for attacking a remote Egyptian army outpost in the Sinai Peninsula with a suicide car bomb and heavy machine gun fire. The assault killed at least 23 soldiers in the deadliest attack in the turbulent region in two years. I.S. said that it had carried out the attack as the Egyptian army was preparing an assault on I.S. positions in Sinai. Over the past months, I.S. has focused its attacks on Egypt’s Christian minority and carried out at least four deadly attacks that killed dozens, prompting President el-Sissi to declare a state of emergency in the country. (New York Post, July 8, 2017) 122 COUNTRIES ADOPT UN TREATY TO BAN NUCLEAR WEAPONS (New York) — 122 countries approved the first-ever treaty to ban nuclear weapons at a UN meeting boycotted by all nuclear-armed nations. Canada did not take part in negotiations. None of the nine countries known or believed to possess nuclear weapons — the U.S., Russia, Britain, China, France, India, Pakistan, North Korea and Israel — is supporting the treaty. The U.S. and other nuclear powers instead want to reaffirm the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. The treaty requires of all ratifying countries "never under any circumstances to develop, test, produce, manufacture, otherwise acquire, possess or stockpile nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices." It also bans any transfer or use of nuclear weapons or nuclear explosive devices — and the threat to use such weapons. (CBC, July 7, 2017) HERZOG TO REMAIN OPPOSITION LEADER (Jerusalem) — Former Labor chairman Isaac Herzog on Wednesday announced he would remain the Knesset opposition leader, at the request of the new party leader Avi Gabbay. Gabbay, who is not a sitting Knesset member and therefore cannot assume the post, had appealed to Herzog to retain the role. Newcomer Gabbay, a former minister in the center-right Kulanu party, was elected Monday as the new chairman of the Labor Party, beating veteran lawmaker and former leader Amir Peretz in a dramatic turn of events for the long-embattled party. Herzog was dethroned from the party leadership a week earlier, receiving just 16 percent of the vote in the first round of the primary. He has served as opposition leader since 2013. (Times of Israel, July 12, 2017) NETANYAHU ASKS IRISH FM WHY HIS COUNTRY SUPPORTS ANTI-ISRAEL NGOS (Jerusalem) — Prime Minister Netanyahu took visiting Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney to task for Dublin’s support of NGOs operating in Israel and the territories. A statement released after the meeting said that Netanyahu asked the Irish foreign minister “why Ireland helps NGOs that call for the destruction of Israel.” According to NGO Monitor, Ireland, via its program for overseas development called Irish Aid, provides millions of euros to NGOs operating in Israel, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. Among the organizations receiving the funding, according to NGO Monitor, are far-left groups such as Al-Haq, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights, Yesh Din and Addameer. (Jerusalem Post, July 11, 2017) MUSLIM EXTREMISTS ARE MAIN PERPETRATORS OF ANTISEMITIC VIOLENCE IN WESTERN EUROPE: REPORT (Oslo) — A report from a Norwegian university on antisemitic violence in Europe has concluded that in six of the seven countries it surveyed, “individuals with backgrounds from Muslim countries stand out among perpetrators of antisemitic violence in Western Europe.” The report examines incidents of antisemitic violence in France, the UK, Germany, Russia, Norway, Sweden and Denmark between 2005-15. Only in Russia — where the lowest level of violence against Jews was recorded during that ten-year period — do far-right skinheads and Neo-Nazis predominate among the perpetrators of these acts. The report stressed that in France especially, Jews in general felt far less safe and were much less likely to visibly identify as Jewish. (Algemeiner, July 7, 2017) CYPRUS REUNIFICATION TALKS FAIL (Nicosia) — The latest round of talks in a decades-long effort to reunify the ethnically split island nation of Cyprus collapsed on Friday. The deal breaker was a clash over what would happen to the more than 35,000 troops that Turkey has kept in the island’s breakaway Turkish Cypriot north since 1974, when it invaded after a coup by supporters of union with Greece. Greek and Greek Cypriot officials said it was Turkey’s “obsession” with keeping its troops in place and the right to intervene that derailed the talks. Turkish and Turkish Cypriot officials said pulling all troops out and abolishing intervention rights were out of the question. (New York Times, July 7, 2017) MAJORITY OF CANADIANS DISAGREE WITH KHADR DEAL: POLL (Ottawa) — More than 70 per cent of Canadians polled disagree with the government's decision to settle a lawsuit with Omar Khadr for a reported $10.5 million and an apology, according to a new survey. Asked which of two statements most reflected their opinion, 71 per cent of those polled said the government should have fought the case and left it to the courts to decide whether Khadr was wrongfully imprisoned. The Supreme Court of Canada has already said government officials violated Khadr's rights and were complicit in his mistreatment at Guantanamo Bay, where he spent nearly 10 years after being captured following a firefight in Afghanistan. Khadr, 15 years old at the time of his 2002 capture, was fighting with Al Qaeda, where his father was a high-ranking member. (CTV, July 11, 2017) CANADIAN COMPANY FINED FOR SELLING NON-KOSHER CHEESE TO JEWISH CAMPS (Ottawa) — Ontario Court of Justice in Newmarket, Ontario, last week ordered the Creation Foods Company in Woodbridge, Ontario, to pay a fine of $25,000 for selling falsely labeled, non-kosher cheddar cheese to two summer camps for Orthodox Jewish children in 2015, in violation of the Food and Drugs Act. A Canadian Food Inspection Agency investigation determined that the company sold a non-kosher food product to two Jewish youth camps, by means of a forged kosher certificate. The cheese sold to both camps did not meet the requirements of kashrut. (Jewish Press, July 10, 2017) B'NAI BRITH CONDEMNS FEDERAL FUNDING FOR ANTI-ISRAEL EXHIBIT (Ottawa) —B’nai Brith Canada is condemning an anti-Israel art exhibit at Western University's McIntosh Gallery that received grants from a federal funding agency, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC). The display, entitled "Choreographies of Resistance," glorifies the actions of Palestinian protesters, including stone-throwers. The creator of the exhibit is Rehab Nazzal, the sister of Palestinian terrorist leader Khaled Nazzal. In 2014, Rehab drew condemnation for a similar display at Ottawa City Hall which glorified Khaled and other Palestinian terrorists. Research by B'nai Brith shows that the SSHRC handed her $35,000 in 2015 in order to continue her work. (B’nai Brith Canada, July 10, 2017) 70 ARTISTS CALL FOR CANCELLATION OF ISRAELI PLAY IN NEW YORK (New York) — Some 70 artists have signed an open letter to New York’s Lincoln Center calling for the cancellation of a play set to be performed by Israeli theater companies and sponsored by the Israeli government. The play, “To the End of the Land” is based on a novel of the same name by Israeli author David Grossman. The play, performed by actors from Tel Aviv, is to run from July 24 to July 27 in New York, “with support of Israel’s Office of Cultural Affairs in North America.” Debora Spar, the president of Lincoln Center, said that the play would not be canceled. More than 45 high-level executives in the entertainment industry signed an open letter thanking Lincoln Center for not yielding to pressure by BDS supporters who demanded the cancellation of the play. (Times of Israel, July 6, 2017) Contents On Topic Links Poland and the West: Giulio Meotti, Arutz Sheva, July 7, 2017 —It was a historic trip, that of US President Donald Trump in Poland. He said that “Poland is the geographic heart of Europe, but more importantly, in the Polish people, we see the soul of Europe”, speaking to thousands of people in Warsaw. “Your nation is great because your spirit is great and your spirit is strong”. Linda Sarsour’s Jihad: Lee Smith, Tablet, July 7, 2017 —Did Linda Sarsour really call for jihad against Donald Trump? Mosul Liberation Will Not be End of IS: Ali Hashem, Al-Monitor, July 8, 2017—Beneath the destroyed minaret of Mosul, known as the "hunchback," rests the rubble of what used to be the great mosque of the city. The historical Grand al-Nuri Mosque was built eight centuries ago by Noureddine Zanki, a medieval Muslim leader who paved the way for Saladin, the founder of the Ayyubid dynasty, to confront the crusaders and take over Jerusalem after the decisive battle of Hattin in 1187 — by making Sunni Muslim orthodoxy prevail over Shiism. As Italy Turns Into a Migrants’ Trap, Help From EU Falls Short: Eric Reguly, Globe & Mail, July 5, 2017 —Italy has turned into a migrants’ trap. Tens of thousands of African migrants are landing in southern Italy. Few want to stay in a country with limited job opportunities – Germany and Scandinavia have better prospects – but the northern route is all but blocked.