Canadian Institute for Jewish Research
L'institut Canadien de Recherches sur le Judaisme
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Tag: Anti-Semitism

PROGRESSIVE JEWS—LEADERS OF THE “ANTI-TRUMP BRIGADE”—WHITEWASH LEFT WING ANTISEMITISM

Liberal Jews are Still Turning a Blind Eye to Anti-Semitism on the Left: Karol Markowicz, New York Post, Nov. 25, 2018— Jew-hating has become too normal in America, and liberal Jewry often keeps mum about it.

Trump, Nazis and American Jewry: Isi leibler, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 17, 2018 — Jew-hating has become too normal in America, and liberal Jewry often keeps mum about it.

JVL: Jewish Whitewashers of Labour Anti-Semitism: Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld, Arutz Sheva, Nov. 18, 2018 — Small radical Jewish political organizations can obtain disproportional publicity in several ways.

Left-Wing Jews — A Jewish And American Tragedy.: Dennis Prager, Investor’s, Nov. 6, 2018 — It is probably impossible to overstate the damage left-wing — not liberal but left-wing — Jews are doing to Judaism, Jews and America.

On Topic Links

Netanyahu Suggests Diaspora is Drifting Away from Judaism: Raphael Ahren, Times of Israel, Sept. 29, 2018

Morton Klein Book Review of “How Jewish Left Corrupts Judaism & Endangers Israel”: Morton A. Klein, ZOA, Aug. 17, 2018

In Democratic Circles, Anti-Semitism is Becoming Normal: Roger Kimball, Spectator, Nov. 14, 2018

The Left May be Winning the War of Words – But Here’s How the GOP Can Win in 2020: Newt Gingrich, Fox News, Nov. 16, 2018

 

LIBERAL JEWS ARE STILL TURNING

A BLIND EYE TO ANTI-SEMITISM ON THE LEFT                                                         

Karol Markowicz                                                                                                             

New York Post, Nov. 25, 2018

 

Jew-hating has become too normal in America, and liberal Jewry often keeps mum about it. Left-of-center Jews speak out about white nationalists, but where are they on anti-Semitism when it arises from their own side?

Last week, Airbnb announced its decision to remove rental listings in the West Bank. But the apartment-sharing service didn’t touch listings in other disputed territories, like Russian-annexed Ukraine and Turkish-occupied North Cyprus. You would think liberal Jewish outfits would race to call out what lies behind this hypocrisy: anti-Semitism.

You’d think wrong. Anti-Defamation League boss Jonathan Greenblatt, for example, issued a tepid statement saying he was “dismayed” by the move. But he stopped short of calling out the blatant anti­Semitism. This fits a pattern with the former Obama administration official. As Seth Mandel wrote in Commentary recently, Greenblatt “sees right-wing bigotry as a crucial element of conservative ideology,” while viewing the left-wing varieties as “isolated anomalies.”

Under his leadership, the ADL opposed, on the flimsiest grounds, Mike Pompeo’s nomination as secretary of state. The ADL also joined the left’s crusade against Brett Kavanaugh, and it has repeatedly clashed with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

But the Greenblatt ADL has been far more reluctant to condemn Democratic firebrand Keith Ellison’s long record of Israel-bashing. Indeed, Greenblatt embraced Ellison in 2016, when the Minnesota congressman ran for deputy chairman of the Democratic National Committee. Greenblatt only reversed course when “a tape surfaced of Ellison accusing Israel of controlling American foreign policy,” as Mandel noted.

But other liberal Jews go even further, by defending the haters. Consider Peter Beinart, the one-time New Republic editor. “No, BDS Is Not Anti-Semitic, And Neither Is Ilhan Omar” was the headline for a piece he wrote in the Jewish Daily Forward recently. BDS, of course, is short for boycott, divest, sanction—a movement that singles out the Jewish state for such punishment. This, despite the horrors that are routine around the world, from China to Venezuela.

Beinart writes that the “BDS movement doesn’t officially oppose the existence of a Jewish state, but some of its most prominent advocates do.” So leaders of the movement want to destroy Israel, but the movement isn’t tainted by them? Where else would this be an acceptable line of argument? If white nationalists marched for gay rights, which liberal would disregard their outsize hate and focus on the one point of agreement? It’s laughable.

As for Ilhan Omar, she’s the newly elected Minnesota congresswoman who in January will take Ellison’s seat in the House of Representatives. In 2012, she tweeted: “Israel has hypnotized the world, may Allah awaken the people and help them see the evil doings of Israel.” The notion that Jews have the world under a spell is as classic an anti-Semitic trope as one can find, yet somehow Omar finds a Jewish defender in a Jewish publication.

Then there’s Linda Sarsour. Last week the Women’s March leader called out “folks who masquerade as progressives but always choose their allegiance to Israel over their commitment to democracy.” This was another old Jew-hating trope: namely, that Jews secretly harbor dual loyalty to Israel. And this is just the latest in a long litany of anti-Semitic comments she’s made.

What’s even more odious is that the Sarsours of the country are called on to help heal the hatred they sow. Last year, Sarsour sat on a panel at the New School about fighting anti-Semitism. And just last week Al Sharpton, who has a history of saying heinous things about Jews in the 1990s, was on MSNBC to discuss — you guessed it — fighting anti-Semitism.

It’s like a bad joke. The guy who has referred to Jews as “interlopers” and “diamond merchants” is now the one claiming to fight Jew-hatred. Has he ever apologized? Jews forgive public figures like Ellison, Omar, Sarsour and Sharpton. But they would never encourage other targeted groups to do the same. Fighting the normalization of anti-Semitism has to begin with Jews themselves speaking out. Now would be a good time to start.

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TRUMP, NAZIS AND AMERICAN JEWRY

Isi leibler

Jerusalem Post, Nov. 17, 2018

As the global antisemitic tsunami intensifies, most Diaspora Jews seem to have lost the plot. In the past, when an external foe emerged, Jews would put aside their differences and unite in the face of those seeking their destruction. Prior to the establishment of the State of Israel, Jews suffered from persecution, pogroms and murder, culminating in the Shoah.

Today, despite a powerful Jewish state that can provide a haven to Jews facing persecution, Diaspora Jews are utterly disunited, and many of them seem to have lost their bearings. They are laying the foundations for an unprecedented eruption of violent antisemitism.

Despite the tragedy of the brutal slaying of 11 Jews in Pittsburgh, American Jewry remains the most peaceful community in the Diaspora. And even today, despite the election of radical anti-Jewish elements – including self-hating Jews – within the Democratic Party, there are still more pro-Israel elements in Congress after the midterm elections. Those elections took place in an unprecedented atmosphere of political hysteria.

But despite predictions of defeat, it would seem that President Donald Trump was the overall winner. In virtually all midterm elections, the ruling party experiences losses. The country is divided. The larger cities lean Democrat and mid-America is overwhelmingly pro-Trump. The concept of respect for a president, which has prevailed over most of America’s history since the Civil War, no longer exists. The nation is divided down the middle with most voters being either passionate lovers or zealous haters of Trump – with Jews at the forefront of the hatred.

While the Republicans lost control of the House of Representatives, they lost fewer seats than the Democrats did when losing the House in the 1994 and 2010 midterms. And more importantly, they held, and perhaps widened, their majority in the Senate (where two races remain undecided). Thus, while Trump will face ongoing tensions domestically, the Democrats will have to be careful not to be seen as extreme and subsequently generate further backlash. And Trump has a virtual free hand in continuing to direct foreign policy. Even more importantly, he will strengthen conservative elements in the higher and lower courts, undoubtedly altering the liberal mentality that has dominated American courts in recent generations.

There is one bizarre aspect to this. The clear majority of Jewish Americans continued the tradition of voting Democratic and have emerged as leaders of the anti-Trump brigade. The fact that many Jews with a liberal tradition oppose Trump’s conservative policies and dislike his aggressive tone is not surprising. But what is incomprehensible is the hysterical abuse they shower on the president – and that they do so in a Jewish context. The almost lunatic attacks on a president by such a wide section of the Jewish community – including progressive rabbis, Jewish lay organizations like the Anti-Defamation League and Jewish women’s groups, which had until now avoided partisan politics – is utterly unprecedented.

The venom expressed suggests that a dybbuk – a malicious spirit – has instilled a collective madness on a major component of the American Jewish community. Jews even demanded that Trump not be present at the mourning ceremony in the Pittsburgh synagogue. Some Jewish leaders blamed him for the massacre, alleging that his aggressive political style was responsible for the actions of the lone neo-Nazi antisemite. Never mind the other shooting rampages perpetrated during previous administrations, for which no president was held responsible. Nobody blamed President Barack Obama for the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting which killed 50 people, nor the other 37 mass shootings during his tenure.

Antisemitism escalated well before Trump’s election. The media, buttressed by the ADL and other Jewish groups, have repeatedly alleged that today its new waves primarily represent white nationalist antisemitism. They include in their fake figures Internet hoaxes that were not even motivated by Jew-hatred. The facts belie this. Beyond occasional mad neo-Nazi fringes on the radical Right, the situation has remained constant. The principal sources of visceral antisemitism are still Muslim extremists, as well as the burgeoning far Left which leads the anti-Israeli and anti-Jewish pack. One thing is clear: American Jews do need to employ security services at synagogues, schools and community centers as is the case today in virtually every Diaspora community around the world.

It is noteworthy that the ever-growing influence of anti-Israel and antisemitic elements seeking to radicalize the Democratic Party is rarely mentioned by the liberal press or the ADL. In the midterm elections, a number of Democratic candidates hostile to Israel and Jews won seats – some in districts with significant Jewish populations. Nor have there been serious efforts to restrain burgeoning antisemitism from pro-Palestinian and anti-Israel left-wing groups on college campuses.

There were few complaints when Obama treated Israel like a rogue state and characterized Israeli self-defense and Palestinian terrorism as being morally equivalent. And there are few complaints now, after it was recently revealed that in 2005 Obama met the head of the Nation of Islam, the radical antisemite Louis Farrakhan, for a photo op. The allegations that Trump contributed to the current polarization of society by his aggressive rhetoric may be true, but that is more than matched by the hysteria from the Democrats.

This is intensified by the dramatic revolution in social media, which – in contrast to only 20 years ago – reaches a massive audience, including extreme hate-mongers. It may well be time to review America’s credo of upholding unlimited freedom of expression. We should assess this in the context of today’s social media, which undoubtedly serves as a platform for promoting racism, violence, and above all, antisemitism.

By far, the most obscene aspect of this mudslinging is the concerted Jewish attempt to portray Trump as tolerating Nazis and being an antisemite. This lie has been reproduced so frequently in recent months by progressive rabbis and Jewish lay leaders that it has become embedded in the minds of many Democratic supporters. But this reflects the madness in the air. Trump has a daughter who converted to Judaism and is religiously observant; he has always had Jewish friends; some of his key executive officers are Jews; and following the tragedy in Pittsburgh, he made a statement condemning antisemitism that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu could not have expressed better…

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

 

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JVL: JEWISH WHITEWASHERS OF LABOUR ANTI-SEMITISM                                                  Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld

Arutz Sheva, Nov. 18, 2018

Small radical Jewish political organizations can obtain disproportional publicity in several ways. Taking strong anti-Israeli attitudes is one such tactic. Non-Jewish anti-Israelis look out for these Jews as legitimizers of their incitement. In the process radical Jews receive far more attention than they can get by themselves or merit because of their size. Another way for such Jewish organizations to get exposure beyond their weight is by helping to fend off antisemitic accusations against organizations which contain Jew-haters.

In recent years the UK Labour party has been in dire need of such a Jewish organization. A small group of Jewish leftist extremists realized the opportunity. In 2017 they created the Jewish Voice for Labour (JVL). This movement should not be confused with the much older and far bigger Jewish Labour Movement (JLM). The latter has been very involved in fighting antisemitism in their party.

John Lansman is a key figure among Labour leftists. He is a member of the party’s nine member National Executive and the founder of Momentum. This grouping is the main supporter of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. Yet Lansman has come out on various occasions against JVL. He is quoted as saying that the very existence of JVL is inflaming tensions between Labour and the Jewish community. One of his associates said Lansman believes that senior JVL figures claim to speak for the entire Jewish community while they in reality only reflect the views of a small faction of anti-Zionist Jews.

JVL’s techniques of whitewashing antisemitism should be analyzed. This enables one to understand how some of these methods are also used in other Western environments. After lengthy discussions this summer, the Labour party accepted the definition of antisemitism of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA). This is the world’s most widely agreed definition of antisemitism. It has been adopted for internal use by a number of countries including the UK and Germany. Like any such text it is not perfect, yet it is much better than anything else that has been suggested until now.

The JVL’s primary mode of attacking the IHRA definition was the release of an alternative definition of antisemitism. Their text stated that comparing Israel’s actions to those of the Nazis should not automatically be seen as antisemitic. The JVL added an obfuscating statement “whether such comparisons are antisemitic must be judged on their substantial content and the inferences that can be reasonably drawn about the motivations for making them, rather than on the likely degree of offense caused.”

One of JVL’s apparent main goals is to whitewash Corbyn’s misdemeanors. Their alternative definition of antisemitism would take some blame away from the Labour leader. In 2010, on Holocaust Memorial Day, Corbyn, held a meeting in parliament in which the Netherlands’s best known Jewish antismite, Hajo Meyer, compared Israel to the Nazis. The latter has done so frequently, even in Germany…

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

Contents

   

LEFT-WING JEWS — A JEWISH AND AMERICAN TRAGEDY                                                     Dennis Prager                                                                           

Investor’s, Nov. 6, 2018

It is probably impossible to overstate the damage left-wing — not liberal but left-wing — Jews are doing to Judaism, Jews and America. Of course, the same can be said of the damage left-wing Catholics are doing to Catholicism and America, other left-wing Christians are doing to Christianity and America, and, most obviously, the damage the secular left-wing is doing. But since anti-Semitism is in the news, and given the prominence of many left-wing Jews, I will focus on them.

The damage done to Jews by left-wing Jews is not new. It began at the beginning of the left with Karl Marx, the grandson of two Orthodox rabbis (his parents had undergone pro forma conversion to Christianity). He wrote one of the most anti-Semitic tracts of the 19th century, “On the Jewish Question,” published in 1844. In it he wrote, among other things: “What is the worldly religion of the Jew? Huckstering …”; “What is his worldly God? Money …”; “Money is the jealous god of Israel, in face of which no other god may exist …”; “In the final analysis, the emancipation of the Jews is the emancipation of mankind from Judaism.”

In the early 20th century, another left-wing Jew, Leon Trotsky, who, along with Lenin, led the Bolshevik Party in Russia, was a catastrophe for Jews and for humanity. In 1920, when Trotsky was head of the Red Army, Moscow’s chief rabbi, Rabbi Jacob Mazeh, asked him to use the army to protect the Jews from pogromist attacks in which tens (of) thousands of Jews were murdered. Trotsky is reported to have responded: “Why do you come to me? I am not a Jew,” to which Rabbi Mazeh answered: “That’s the tragedy. It’s the Trotskys who make revolutions, and it’s the Bronsteins who pay the price.”

That is the story of the many Jewish leftists to this day: Jewish leftists make revolutions, and all the Jews (among millions of others) pay the price. Thus, many of the leaders of the movement to economically strangle Israel — the Boycott, Divest, Sanctions (BDS) movement — are left-wing Jews. A few years ago, I was invited to the world’s most famous debating forum, the Oxford Union, to debate the farcical question of whether Israel or Hamas is a greater obstacle to peace in the Middle East. One of my two adversaries was a Jewish former professor at Oxford. He argued that Israel was a greater threat to peace than Hamas.

Another prominent left-wing Jew, MIT professor Noam Chomsky, has devoted his life to writing and speaking against two countries: the United States and Israel. The security of the world’s only Jewish state is by far the greatest security issue for world Jewry. Yet many left-wing Jews attack Israel, support many of those who wish to destroy Israel or, at the very least, do nothing to strengthen Israel’s security. In America today, leftism has poisoned so many non-Orthodox synagogues, they differ only from the American Civil Liberties Union or the Democratic Party in their use of Hebrew liturgy.

Many non-Orthodox synagogues sat shiva — Judaism’s seven days of mourning after the death of an immediate relative — when Donald Trump was elected president. This perversion of Judaism is an example of what leftism does to every religion it infiltrates. I suspect none of those synagogues sat shiva after the murder of 11 Jews in Pittsburgh. Why? Did the election of Donald Trump bother them more? Left-wing Jews are ethnically Jewish, but their values derive from leftism (just as the current pope is Catholic in his identity but his values derive from leftism).

The current charge that the Pittsburgh massacre was caused by President Trump is one of the greatest libels in American history. Virtually every left-wing columnist and commentator has spread this lie, most of them written by left-wing Jews such as the Washington Post’s Dana Milbank. One of their lies is that attacks on George Soros are anti-Semitic.

I think George Soros is a malevolent force. Am I an anti-Semite? (To answer that, let’s compare what I have done for Jews and Judaism with what any of these left-wing Jews have done.) But left-wing Jews have always done this. They attributed the execution of the Rosenbergs — who, immoral leftists that they were, passed on the secrets to the atom bomb to Stalin — to anti-Semitism. The judge in the Rosenberg case was a Jew. But to left-wing Jews, that didn’t matter. Ever since Stalin labeled Trotsky a “fascist,” leftists have always depicted their opponents as “Nazis,” “racists,” “anti-Semites,” “fascists,” “haters” and “bigots.” That is their modus operandi.

Many of these left-wing Jews base this libel about President Trump’s “role” in the context of an equally libelous claim that there has been a great rise in American anti-Semitism in the Trump era — resulting in the Pittsburgh massacre — based on an Anti-Defamation League study. The study’s mendacity is fully exposed by David E. Bernstein, a professor of law at George Mason University Law School and a Trump opponent, in two devastating reviews (one on Reason.com and one in Tablet Magazine). Read them and you will understand one of the most important things you need to know about the left: Truth is not a left-wing value. The ADL, which at one time was preoccupied with fighting anti-Semitism, is now preoccupied with fighting Donald Trump and fighting on behalf of the American left…

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

Contents 

On Topic Links

Netanyahu Suggests Diaspora is Drifting Away from Judaism: Raphael Ahren, Times of Israel, Sept. 29, 2018—Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in a conversation with Israeli reporters Friday suggested that the cause of Israel’s troubled relationship with Diaspora Jews was that the latter were moving away from Judaism.

Morton Klein Book Review of “How Jewish Left Corrupts Judaism & Endangers Israel”: Morton A. Klein, ZOA, Aug. 17, 2018—Neumann describes how radical Jewish leftists distorted and turned a minor phrase, “tikkun olam” (repairing the world), into a left-wing political “social justice” universalist theology that is hostile to Israel and traditional Judaism, and which sympathizes with the Jewish people’s enemies.

In Democratic Circles, Anti-Semitism is Becoming Normal: Roger Kimball, Spectator, Nov. 14, 2018 —As people scramble to explain the sudden resurgence of socialism not only on America’s college campuses but also in the corridors of political power, it is worth noting the concomitant resurgence of anti-Semitism in those redoubts.

The Left May be Winning the War of Words – But Here’s How the GOP Can Win in 2020: Newt Gingrich, Fox News, Nov. 16, 2018—One of the key lessons of last week’s midterm elections is that the left is waging – and winning – a linguistic war. The left claims and occupies more and more linguistic ground with each new fight.

 

Coping With the Old, and the New, Antisemitism

For a PDF of Israfax 297 click the following link

 

 

 

 

EDITORIAL: FIDDLING ON THE ROOF:

COPING WITH THE OLD, AND THE NEW, ANTISEMITISM

Frederick Krantz

On Wednesday, 14 November, the New York Times recounts, at the end of the first act of Fiddler on the Roof at the Hippodrome Theater in Baltimore, Md., after Russian antisemites stage a pogrom against residents of a Jewish shtetl celebrating a wedding, a man jumped up in the balcony, repeatedly yelling “Heil Hitler! Heil Trump!”.

Several theater-goers feared a mass shooting—the Pittsburgh synagogue murders, after all, occurred only a short time before. One man, “frightened and disturbed”, shrank in his seat, fearing that “this guy [may have] a gun”.  Another, noting that several audience members ran for the exits, said “I was waiting to hear a gunshot, frankly”.

Baltimore police arrested the alleged screamer, one Anthony M. Derlunis II, 58, whom they said had been drinking heavily, and who told them that he had yelled out because the scene in the play reminded him of his hatred of President Trump, a reaction borne out, he claimed, by the evidently high number of “Trump supporters” (i.e., Jews) reacting negatively to his outburst.

The frightening scene lasted about five minutes, and Mr. Derlunis was not charged by the Baltimore authorities—because, as they rather disingenuously put it, “As reprehensible as the man’s words were, they are considered protected free speech because nobody was directly threatened”. Yet the NYT’s account does note that he has now been banned from entering the theater.

Of course, in the current antisemitic climate (the rate of incidents in both the U.S. and Canada, like the rate of gun possession, has been steadily increasing in recent years), the Baltimore shouter, like the Pittsburgh shooter, might well have had a gun, and used it.  These incidents involve both the extreme right and extreme left, and while traditional antisemitic motifs are present–religious bigotry against Jews as such, resentment of “Jewish money” and political “influence”, etc.—themes clearly associated with what is termed “the new antisemitism” are also at work.

Here, not so much “the Jew” as political hatred of the Jewish State, Israel, is the focus of vitriol and resentment.  Arguing that Israel is a kind of Nazi oppressor of innocent Palestinians, this “new” antisemitism can—as in “anti-Zionist” “BDS” campaigns on campuses, where Islamist and leftist elements combine–masquerade as highly “moral” and “even-handed”.

Indeed, the “new” antisemites can even claim to be highly offended when accused of being antisemites–we are “human rights activists”, they [including, sadly, some “progressive” Jewish allies] say, cleverly claiming to be not anti-Jewish but “only” anti-Israel. As if their drive to delegitimate and, hence, to finish Hitler’s work by destroying the world’s only Jewish democratic state, is not the very essence of modern genocidal antisemitism!

That Fiddler on the Roof (an oddly American phenomenon, a musical about a pogrom) could provoke a Trump-hating and potentially dangerous meshugah to shout “Heil Hitler!” in a crowded theater, is a not-so-paradoxical commentary on our current, conflicted political moment.

While we are far from facing an imminent, State-supported Kristallnacht, it is deeply concerning that, in a U.S. only two years away from the next Presidential election, the left-“progressive” and Marxisand wing of the Democratic Party cultivates some members’ no-so-genteel anti-Israelism, while in Britain an outright antisemite, Jeremy Corbyn, heads a British Labour Party which might, on the heels of a Brexit-induced election, actually come to power.

We must be alert to an increasing degree of turmoil and uncertainty: the “longest hatred”, antisemitism, ever-protean in its ability to change forms, is alive and well.  The price of Jewish freedom is eternal vigilance, the ensuring of Jewish continuity, defense of basic democratic rights and traditions, and unified support for the well-being of the state of Israel, vital center of the Jewish people.

(Prof. Frederick Krantz is Director of the Canadian Institute for Jewish Research,

and editor of its ISRAFAX journal)

 

 

 

 

 

Frederick Krantz: FIDDLING ON THE ROOF: COPING WITH THE OLD, AND THE NEW, ANTISEMITISM

On Wednesday, 14 November, the New York Times recounts, at the end of the first act of Fiddler on the Roof at the Hippodrome Theater in Baltimore, Md., after Russian antisemites stage a pogrom against residents of a Jewish shtetl celebrating a wedding, a man jumped up in the balcony, repeatedly yelling “Heil Hitler! Heil Trump!”.

Several theater-goers feared a mass shooting—the Pittsburgh synagogue murders, after all, occurred only a short time before. One man, “frightened and disturbed”, shrank in his seat, fearing that “this guy [may have] a gun”.  Another, noting that several audience members ran for the exits, said “I was waiting to hear a gunshot, frankly”.

Baltimore police arrested the alleged screamer, one Anthony M. Derlunis II, 58, whom they said had been drinking heavily, and who told them that he had yelled out because the scene in the play reminded him of his hatred of President Trump, a reaction borne out, he claimed, by the evidently high number of “Trump supporters” (i.e., Jews) reacting negatively to his outburst.

The frightening scene lasted about five minutes, and Mr. Derlunis was not charged by the Baltimore authorities—because, as they rather disingenuously put it, “As reprehensible as the man’s words were, they are considered protected free speech because nobody was directly threatened”. Yet the NYT’s account does note that he has now been banned from entering the theater.

Of course, in the current antisemitic climate (the rate of incidents in both the U.S. and Canada, like the rate of gun possession, has been steadily increasing in recent years), the Baltimore shouter, like the Pittsburgh shooter, might well have had a gun, and used it.  These incidents involve both the extreme right and extreme left, and while traditional antisemitic motifs are present–religious bigotry against Jews as such, resentment of “Jewish money” and political “influence”, etc.—themes clearly associated with what is termed “the new antisemitism” are also at work.

Here, not so much “the Jew” as political hatred of the Jewish State, Israel, is the focus of vitriol and resentment.  Arguing that Israel is a kind of Nazi oppressor of innocent Palestinians, this “new” antisemitism can—as in “anti-Zionist” “BDS” campaigns on campuses, where Islamist and leftist elements combine–masquerade as highly “moral” and “even-handed”.

Indeed, the “new” antisemites can even claim to be highly offended when accused of being antisemites–we are “human rights activists”, they [including, sadly, some “progressive” Jewish allies] say, cleverly claiming to be not anti-Jewish but “only” anti-Israel. As if their drive to delegitimate and, hence, to finish Hitler’s work by destroying the world’s only Jewish democratic state, is not the very essence of modern genocidal antisemitism!

That Fiddler on the Roof (an oddly American phenomenon, a musical about a pogrom) could provoke a Trump-hating and potentially dangerous meshugah to shout “Heil Hitler!” in a crowded theater, is a not-so-paradoxical commentary on our current, conflicted political moment.

While we are far from facing an imminent, State-supported Kristallnacht, it is deeply concerning that, in a U.S. only two years away from the next Presidential election, the left-“progressive” and Marxisand wing of the Democratic Party cultivates some members’ no-so-genteel anti-Israelism, while in Britain an outright antisemite, Jeremy Corbyn, heads a British Labour Party which might, on the heels of a Brexit-induced election, actually come to power.

We must be alert to an increasing degree of turmoil and uncertainty: the “longest hatred”, antisemitism, ever-protean in its ability to change forms, is alive and well.  The price of Jewish freedom is eternal vigilance, the ensuring of Jewish continuity, defense of basic democratic rights and traditions, and unified support for the well-being of the state of Israel, vital center of the Jewish people.

(Prof. Frederick Krantz is Director of the Canadian Institute for Jewish Research,

and editor of its ISRAFAX journal,)

 

ANNIVERSARIES OF WWI ARMISTICE AND KRISTALLNACHT ARE PROFOUND MOMENTS OF HISTORICAL REFLECTION

The Connection Between WWI Armistice and WWII Kristallnacht: Ben Cohen, JNS, Oct. 19, 2018— Two grimly sobering anniversaries fall in November.

This November 11th, Remember Canada’s Heroic 100 Days: J.L. Granatstein, National Post, Nov. 8, 2018 — Most Canadians know something of the battle of Vimy Ridge in April 1917.

A Kristallnacht Lesson: Mordecai Paldiel, Times of Israel, Nov. 8, 2018— As we commemorate the 80th anniversary of the carnage known historically as Kristallnacht, orchestrated by the Nazi regime, we are faced with another horrendous attack on innocent Jews, this time by a lone psychotic anti-Semite targeting Jews at prayer in a Pittsburgh synagogue.

What Americans Must Do After Pittsburgh to Thwart Antisemitism: Abraham Cooper and Yitzchok Adlerstein, Algemeiner, Nov. 6, 2018 — “Some people don’t like other people just because they’re Jews,” declared a main character in the 1947 Oscar-winning American classic, “A Gentleman’s Agreement.”

On Topic Links

The Courage and Folly of a War That Left Indelible Scars: Alan Cowell, New York Times, Nov. 9, 2018

80 Years After Nazi ‘Kristallnacht’ Pogrom, One Jewish Girl’s Holocaust Diary Sounds Warning Against Revival of Antisemitism: Ben Cohen, Algemeiner, Nov. 6, 2018

Why I Don’t Want an Apology for the St. Louis: Sally Zerker, CJN, Oct. 10, 2017

Trudeau Warns Against Modern Anti-Semitism in Apology for Turning Away Jewish Refugees Fleeing Nazis: Steven Chase, Globe & Mail, Nov. 7, 2018

 

                             THE CONNECTION BETWEEN WWI ARMISTICE

                                                 AND WWII KRISTALLNACHT                                                                                            Ben Cohen

                                                            JNS, Oct. 19, 2018

Two grimly sobering anniversaries fall in November. On the 9th and 10th, we will mark the 80th anniversary of Kristallnacht—the orgy of murder and violence that devastated Jewish communities across Nazi Germany in 1938. The following day, Nov. 11, we will mark the centennial of the armistice that ended World War I—the most devastating military conflict the world had so far experienced.

These two events, occurring exactly 20 years apart, were intimately connected. Some historians argue that the 20th century really began with World War I, which buried the geriatric Habsburg and Ottoman Empires, and set the stage for the modern totalitarian systems of communism and fascism—directly paving the way for the rise in Germany of National Socialism and its unprecedented war on the Jews.

In all senses one can think of, there was a dramatic transformation in the position of Europe’s Jews between the end of the “Great War,” as it was dubbed, and the Nazi Holocaust that consumed nearly two-thirds of their number. For one thing, the record of Jewish military service in the war rather gruesomely demonstrated that Jews were also loyal, grateful citizens of the countries in which they lived. Given that French-Jewish army officer Alfred Dreyfus had been convicted of treason in an anti-Semitic show trial only two decades earlier, that record was even more striking.

More than 50,000 Jews fought on the British and Commonwealth side, 100,000 with the Germans and 300,000 with Austria-Hungary—many thousands of whom lost their lives in the process. From outside Europe, more than 200,000 Jews were among the approximately 5 million American service personnel in 1917, when the United States joined the Allied side.

When it came to Jewish civilians, the toll in the eastern half of Europe was particularly brutal, with hundreds of thousands of Jews deported to the Russian interior or murdered in bloody pogroms. Those ravages led several thousand Jews to join the ranks of the Bolshevik Revolution and even serve in its senior posts, but by the mid-1920s, the ruling Communist Party was no longer a polyglot underground organization. It was, in dramatic contrast, a ruling bureaucracy undergoing a profound process of “Russification.”

The experience of World War I left some Jewish communities feeling more integrated and secure, while others were exposed as highly vulnerable, or even decimated out of existence. It also made realistic the proposal of a national home for the Jewish people, an end-goal the British government regarded “with favor” in its Balfour Declaration of 1917. On Nov. 11, 1918, then, the world’s Jews could spy the promise of redemption on all the political paths—liberal-assimilationist, revolutionary, Zionist—that were available to them. Hardly any of them believed that mass extermination was awaiting them within a generation. To have even suggested such a thing to one of the 7,000 Jews decorated by Germany for their war service would probably have been insulting.

But as the polarizing settlement that ended World War I finally crumbled with Hitler’s launching of World War II, the old libels against the Jews—that they were tribally disloyal, that they profited from war both economically and in terms of political influence—returned with a vengeance. The British writer George Orwell noted the reluctance of his own government to combat such slanders. “To publicize the exploits of Jewish soldiers, or even to admit the existence of a considerable Jewish army in the Middle East, rouses hostility in South Africa, the Arab countries and elsewhere,” he wrote during World War II. “It is easier to ignore the whole subject and allow the man in the street to go on thinking that Jews are exceptionally clever at dodging military service.”

But the British were far from alone in falling for the myth that Jews are at their most disloyal in times, like wartime, when everyone else is at their most loyal. That trope was among the many anti-Semitic fabrications of the Nazis, whose dehumanizing propaganda campaigns and notorious racial laws discriminating against Jews exploded in the violence of Kristallnacht. More than 100 Jews were murdered on the streets of Germany during those hours of fire and broken glass, while 30,000 more were deported to camps whose names—Buchenwald, Sachsenhausen, Dachau—are now indelibly associated with the Holocaust.

These are the basic facts that the forthcoming commemorations of these two events will reflect. For Jews, these are occasions for profound historical reflection, in a year that has already witnessed the seventieth anniversary of the State of Israel’s creation. Both anniversaries are occasions to ponder how the crooked road of Jewish emancipation, whose benefits these days still far outweigh the persistence of anti-Semitism, felt for those who came before us.                              Contents    

THIS NOVEMBER 11TH, REMEMBER CANADA’S HEROIC 100 DAYS                                                J.L. Granatstein

National Post, Nov. 8, 2018

Most Canadians know something of the battle of Vimy Ridge in April 1917. The victory there saw the Canadian Corps take a key enemy position, and the great Canadian memorial atop the ridge has been the scene of national commemorations and countless individual pilgrimages. Fewer Canadians know about Ypres in April 1915 when the raw soldiers of the Canadian Division fought through the first dreadful German gas attack. And even fewer know about the battle of Passchendaele in the autumn of 1917 when the Canadian Corps struggled through a morass of mud and suffered some 16,000 casualties to take a worthless rise of land in the flat Flanders fields.

But almost no Canadians know anything about the Hundred Days of 1918 when the Canadian Corps, led by Lt.-Gen. Sir Arthur Currie, fought the most significant battles in Canadian military history. From Aug. 8 to the signing of the Armistice on Nov. 11, the 100,000 men of the four Canadian infantry divisions defeated one-quarter of the German army on the Western Front in a great succession of terrible struggles.

Beginning at Amiens, France, the Canadians, Australians, British and French smashed through the German lines, gaining up to 14 kilometres on the first day. The Canadians, the “shock troops of the British Army,” as historian Shane Schreiber dubbed them, had been moved some 60 kilometres in secrecy to the Amiens front, each soldier ordered to “Keep Your Mouth Shut!” Then with tanks, artillery, aircraft and infantry working together in a near-perfect combined arms attack that featured both disinformation and surprise, the Canadians attacked. “Within 10 minutes of the start,” Gunner Bertie Cox remembered in an extraordinary account of the attack on Aug. 8, “the tanks, by the hundreds, and the cavalry, by the thousands, were passing our guns. It made an awful pretty picture to see the tanks and cavalry looming up in the mist, over the crest, just about dawn. The field guns began to pass at a gallop too, not to mention the infantry by the hundreds of thousands. By 5 a.m., the prisoners began to go by and this procession continued all day. … We spent a considerable part of the day checking them over, getting souvenirs. … They nearly cleaned us out of cigarettes and emptied our water bottles.” It was, declared another soldier, “the best executed and best picked out plan that was ever pulled off.” True enough. It was also what German strategist Gen. Erich Ludendorff called “the black day of the German Army in the war.”

Three weeks later at the end of August and the beginning of September, the Canadians, having moved north, fought their way through the Drocourt-Quéant Line near Arras, driving ahead through machine-gun bunkers and heavily defended strongpoints. The fighting was brutal and terribly costly to both sides, but the men of the Corps broke the enemy line.

Then at the end of September, Gen. Currie’s men fought their tactical masterpiece and crossed the Canal du Nord. Currie had sent two divisions across a dry portion of the canal, then fanning them out to roll up the enemy positions. The Corps’ engineers threw up bridges across the canal under fire, and tanks, guns and more infantry went across. The fighting over the next week was especially difficult for the weary Canadians. “Never have I felt so depressed as I felt after that battle,” young brigade commander J.A. Clark recalled. “It seemed impossible to break the morale and fighting spirit of the German troops. We felt that this Boche could not be beaten,” he continued, “certainly not in 1918. He fought magnificently and in a most determined fashion. He discouraged a great many soldiers in the Corps.” The enemy was broken but far from beaten, and the infantry battalions in Clark’s brigade had been shattered in the fighting in front of Cambrai.

Still, in what Gen. Currie called the Corps’ hardest fighting of the war, the Canadians pressed the Germans back to Cambrai, their major transportation and supply hub in northern France. On Oct. 9 and 10, they seized the city, dousing the fires the retreating enemy had set. There was one last set piece battle at Valenciennes, close to the French-Belgian border, where a single Canadian brigade attacked Mont Houy under the heaviest Canadian artillery barrage of the war and routed the German defenders. The pursuit then began, the enemy fleeing eastward, leaving behind only machine-gun teams to slow the chase. On Nov. 10, the Canadians were at Mons, Belgium, the symbolic town where the British Expeditionary Force had first faced the invading Germans in August 1914 and had been forced to retreat. The Canadians liberated Mons just as the Armistice brought the Great War to a close.

In truth, the Armistice was really a German surrender. There was no “stab in the back” as Adolf Hitler and others in Germany would proclaim. The German army had been defeated on the field of battle by the Allies, and the Canadian Corps had played a distinguished, costly role in the victory. The Hundred Days cost Canada some 15,000 dead and 30,000 wounded, almost one fifth of the 240,000 Canadian casualties suffered in four years of war. And yet, somehow no one in Canada today seems to know of the Hundred Days, its great and important victories all but forgotten…[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]                                                    Contents

   

A KRISTALLNACHT LESSON

Mordecai Paldiel

Times of Israel, Nov. 8, 2018

As we commemorate the 80th anniversary of the carnage known historically as Kristallnacht, orchestrated by the Nazi regime, we are faced with another horrendous attack on innocent Jews, this time by a lone psychotic anti-Semite targeting Jews at prayer in a Pittsburgh synagogue.

Let us reflect on the significance of this large, government-staged pogrom on November 9-10, 1938 targeting the Jewish population across Germany, including the annexed regions of Austria and the Czech Sudetenland. Jewish homes and businesses were vandalized, 270 synagogues destroyed, close to 100 persons killed, and 30,000 Jewish men carted off to concentration camps. In the context of the atrocities committed during the height of the Holocaust, these figures may be appalling, but, perhaps not shocking. Taking a step back, it is important to acknowledge that this did not take place with the backdrop of the Holocaust, but rather in the midst of civilized and still at peace Europe. If anyone, up to then, had doubts as to how far the Nazi regime would go to force all Jews out of the country by the use of acts of terror, the violent physical attacks of Kristallnacht left no one further in doubt about the intentions of Hitler and his henchmen. It also left no doubts about the anemic pushback from the international community.

Kristallnacht can be seen not just as a horrid day in history that foreshadowed the attitudes and events of the Holocaust, but also as a testing of limits to observe both if and how the international community would take action. Sadly, the response of the Western democratic nations to this flagrant challenge to the very foundations of humanity was not forthcoming. The Evian Conference, held July 1938 convening 32 nations, was unable to form a unified response to accommodate Jewish refugees fleeing persecution, and signaled to the Nazis that the world’s countries were sympathetic, but not prepared to open their own doors to Jews.

Months after Kristallnacht, several events only heightened this conviction in the mind of Hitler. In May 1939, the St. Louis boat with a cargo of more than 900 Jews confirmed for emigration to the United States was denied landing off the coast of Florida. The boat was forced to return its human cargo to the shores of Europe; many of these passengers were later engulfed in the Holocaust. That same year, following the Kindertransport example of England, Senator Robert F. Wagner of New York and Representative Edith Rogers of Massachusetts failed to have Congress approve a bill to allow 20,000 Jewish children from Germany access to the United States. Even with the assurance that the Jewish community would be solely responsible for bearing the cost of hosting and caring for the children, the US government refused to intervene. That same year, US Secretary of the Interior, Harold Ickes, proposed allowing Jewish refugees into Alaska to help develop the natural resources of that territory, adding that it would not impinge US immigration laws, since these laws would not apply to the non-State Alaska. It would be both a humanitarian gesture as well as a boost to the economy of Alaska. It was rejected by the President.

All these aforementioned steps of refusal to save even a limited number of Jews were signals interpreted by the Nazi regime that, in spite of words of protest, the nations of the world were not invested in the welfare of Jews. For the Nazis it meant only one thing: that they could escalate their anti-Jewish measures beyond the large-scale pogrom of Kristallnacht to mass murder as publicly proclaimed by Hitler in January 1939 that indeed began in June 1941 when Germany invaded Russia.

In the words of the 18th century British political philosopher Edmund Burke, “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” It is not intention nor discussion that brings strong enough repudiation for evil, but action. Kristallnacht was not just the start of organized violence against Jews in Germany—in fact, with a different international reaction, it could have been the end of it. Instead, it was the hall pass for such violence and hatred. While it is easy to dismiss Kristallnacht as a different time, place, and political climate, we know all too well that anti-Semitism remains a dangerous force in our world and in our free nation. Let the anniversary of Kristallnacht be a reminder to the civilized world and younger generations to act against evil regimes who flout the elementary rules of civilized conduct before they cause untold damage, and hurt millions of innocent people.

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WHAT AMERICANS MUST DO AFTER PITTSBURGH

TO THWART ANTISEMITISM                                          

Abraham Cooper and Yitzchok Adlerstein

                                                Algemeiner, Nov. 6, 2018

“Some people don’t like other people just because they’re Jews,” declared a main character in the 1947 Oscar-winning American classic, “A Gentleman’s Agreement.” The crematoria at Auschwitz had not yet cooled down, but there were Americans who couldn’t abide the thought of Jews sharing their country clubs, neighborhoods, or college classrooms. Those were the challenges for American Jews back then, but today we no longer worry about “gentlemen.” After Pittsburgh, we’re on guard against the next lone wolf psychopath, armed with hate and bullets, empowered and validated by his invisible social media bigoted “friends.”

For us Jews it’s (still) the best of times — and, as we bury our dead in Pittsburgh, the worst of times. According to Pew, we are the single most admired religious group in America. On the other hand, the FBI confirms that we are the #1 target of religion-based hate in the United States. Simon Wiesenthal said that “hope lives when people remember.” Let us remember who is responsible for keeping antisemitism alive in our time, lest we be powerless to resist it.

The Pittsburgh gunman is responsible for his heinous deeds. Yet such extremism does not operate in a vacuum. Here are some points to ponder after the Pittsburgh massacre recedes from the headlines. We offer them as professionals who have struggled with antisemitism worldwide for decades. Social media outlets like Gab market hate. Hiding behind a freedom of speech mantra, they deny any moral responsibility for the platform they offer to the worst misusers of the privilege of that freedom, eerily similar to ISIS, whose online marketing campaigns spawn lone wolf terrorist attacks on both sides of the Atlantic.

Good people used to drive the haters underground. No longer. In major capitals — London, Paris, Brussels, Copenhagen, Stockholm — it is dangerous for Jews to wear the Star of David or a kippah in public. Police and politicians look the other way as (mainly) Islamist extremists bully and pummel Jews on the streets of Europe. Important institutions are rife with winking at antisemitism, or even worse. Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad calls Jews “hooked-nosed,” and boasts that he is “glad to be labelled antisemitic.” On a recent visit to the UK, Mohamad was welcomed to Imperial College and Oxford by the heads of these institutions. Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party is awash with Jew-hatred, but he could be the UK’s next leader.

An unholy alliance of terrorist groups like Hamas and Hezbollah, funded by Iran, uses antisemitism as a tool to turn the world against Israel. Their propaganda has found enthusiastic support in academia and even churches, so that today over 150 million Europeans believe Israelis treat Palestinians the way Nazis treated Jews. Young Americans hear much of the same on campuses dominated by progressives who detest power and “privilege,” especially of Israel and the United States. Anti-Zionism has flourished as a tool for gutless Jew haters: “We don’t hate Jews. Only Zionists.” Now, there is lots of room to criticize Israel without being antisemitic in the slightest. But when that criticism demonizes or subjects Israel to a double standard, the road to antisemitism has been crossed.

Syria, Iran, Nigeria, Myanmar, China — millions are dying, or living in exile, or incarcerated in internment camps for their religious beliefs, but the lion’s share of UN resolutions contemptuously pile on the Jewish state. The Jewish people’s historic links to their key religious sites have been denied. For close to two thousand years, the Church (followed by various churches) taught and encouraged antisemitism. That has changed for the better in some denominations, and in some areas. But old attitudes die hard. Rather than show special sensitivity to Jew-hatred, some churches still feed into it. The over-the-top hostility of some church groups to Israel is a case in point.

The Quakers, who risked their lives to save Jews during the Holocaust, are today no friends of Jews. Mennonites in South America actively aided Hitler in his campaign to demonstrate pure Aryan superiority. (Their contempt for Israel translates in the popular mind into a rejection of Jews and Judaism.) Many other church groups aid and abet the virulent Jew-hatred of Palestinian groups by standing by them as allies, without calling them out for the antisemitism constantly spewed in their mosques and textbooks.

And, of course, there is the right-wing antisemitism of the Pittsburgh murderer, encouraged and similar to what we saw in Charlottesville. Tragically, the Pittsburgh synagogue massacre is not — cannot — be a one-off, any more than 9/11 was, even if never repeated. It will change the way Jews live for the foreseeable future. Houses of worship, citadels of peace, will look more like TSA portals to airports. So things are bad and could get even worse. What can we do to try to stem the tide? Don’t underestimate the sheer volume of age-old Jew-hatred. It did not disappear after the Holocaust. It never disappeared from polite society…[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

 

Contents

On Topic Links

The Courage and Folly of a War That Left Indelible Scars: Alan Cowell, New York Times, Nov. 9, 2018—During World War I, millions died, empires crumbled, nations were formed and maps were redrawn in ways that reverberate mightily a century later.

80 Years After Nazi ‘Kristallnacht’ Pogrom, One Jewish Girl’s Holocaust Diary Sounds Warning Against Revival of Antisemitism: Ben Cohen, Algemeiner, Nov. 6, 2018—For the global community of Holocaust scholars and educators, the 80th anniversary of the Nazi pogrom against Germany’s Jews commonly known as “Kristallnacht” — which falls this Friday and Saturday — could scarcely come at a more pertinent moment.

Why I Don’t Want an Apology for the St. Louis: Sally Zerker, CJN, Oct. 10, 2017—On Sept. 27, at the inauguration of the National Holocaust Monument in Ottawa, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau hinted that his government is considering apologizing for the 1939 MS St. Louis incident, when Canada turned away a boatload of Jews who were seeking asylum from Nazi persecution. To which I say: no, I don’t want an apology. And here’s why.

Trudeau Warns Against Modern Anti-Semitism in Apology for Turning Away Jewish Refugees Fleeing Nazis: Steven Chase, Globe & Mail, Nov. 7, 2018—Prime Minister Justin Trudeau formally apologized Wednesday for a shameful episode in Canada’s history, when this country turned away more than 900 German Jewish refugees fleeing Nazi terror and persecution.

 

SYNAGOGUE MASSACRE CAUSED BY ANTISEMITIC JEW-HATRED & “DELEGITIMATION” OF ISRAEL, NOT BY TRUMP’S RHETORIC

Trump’s Rhetoric Didn’t Cause this Massacre: Barbara Kay, National Post, Oct. 30, 2018 — The Sabbath massacre in Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life synagogue was the deadliest attack on Jews in U.S. history, but it is not the first time Jews in the United States have been targeted for attack while at worship.

Pittsburgh Synagogue Slaughter Not Easily Explained: Tarek Fatah, Toronto Sun, Oct. 30, 2018— The slaughter of Jews in Pittsburgh by an alleged anti-Semite cannot be easily explained.

American Jewry’s False Prophets: Caroline B. Glick, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 1, 2018— Just hours after the largest massacre of Jews in America in US history, the Atlantic Monthly posted a piece by Franklin Foer.

Farmers and Fighters: The Making of the Land: Douglas Feith, Tablet, Oct. 24, 2018— Last autumn was the Balfour Declaration’s hundredth birthday.

On Topic Links

Israel’s Role in the Struggle Against Antisemitism: David M. Weinberg, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 1, 2018

If the Synagogue Shooter Were Muslim, the Media Would Be Defending Him: Daniel Greenfield, Sultan Knish, Oct. 31, 2018

Tears Were Shed: Justin Amler, Jewish Press, Oct. 31, 2018

The Heart Breaks for Many Reasons: Editorial, Arlene From Israel, Oct. 30, 2018

 

                    TRUMP’S RHETORIC DIDN’T CAUSE THIS MASSACRE

                                                 Barbara Kay

                                                            National Post, Oct. 30, 2018

The Sabbath massacre in Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life synagogue was the deadliest attack on Jews in U.S. history, but it is not the first time Jews in the United States have been targeted for attack while at worship. In 1960, a 16-year-old boy threw a bomb into a synagogue in Gladsden, Ala., but it didn’t explode. The would-be massacrist then shot and injured two people fleeing the building. Before that, in 1958, a bomb made of 54 dynamite sticks was thrown into the Temple Beth-El in Birmingham, Ala., and it, too, failed to explode. If it had, it could have killed hundreds.

Nobody remembers disasters that fail to happen. But these near-misses should remind us that evil walks among us at all times, not just “in the age of Trump,” a phrase one continually hears, and that some twisted minds, yearning for a unitary explanation that accounts for their own failures as well as all the other perceived problems in the world, fasten on The Jews. They should also remind us that sporadic hate crimes, even horrific massacres, should not be blamed on an authority figure, however obnoxious, unless that leader actually embodies an inherently hateful ideology or political policy.

So yes, Kristallnacht could be blamed squarely on Hitler and the Nazi party, because racial purity and anti-Semitism were integral aspects of that platform, with violence condoned or encouraged. Terrorism in Europe and Israel can be blamed on Islamist groups, because hatred of Jews and Western culture is inherent to radical Islam, and because such groups proudly and publicly take credit for the carnage. In North America, we can blame neo-Nazi groups and the social media they use for encouraging hatred of Jews, blacks and other minorities. Yet unlike many Islamism-inspired attacks, no organized white supremacist group praised Bowers or implied he acted on their behalf. Bowers was simply an extreme anti-Semite, churning day and night with ugly thoughts and barely contained impulses that finally burst their fragile bounds.

Trump is criticized for a tone that often promotes division among Americans for partisan ends. Fair enough. He’s also slammed for not repudiating these cretins unequivocally. But even if he had, what difference would that have made in this case? Bowers was contemptuous of Trump for his well-known Jewish connections and partiality to Israel. In one post on Gab.com, a site known for hate speech, Bowers wrote, “Trump is surrounded by k****”, “things will stay the course.” If he were inspired by Trump’s perceived indulgence of the alt-right, does it make sense that he would target people Trump identifies with? Would it not be more logical for him to target undocumented Latinos or Muslims, who have legitimate reasons to consider Trump hostile?

If you follow the “logic” that links the synagogue massacre to Trump, the same logic would have Justin Trudeau — widely perceived as hyper-sensitive to Muslim concerns — as the root cause for Alexandre Bissonnette’s rage erupting in the 2017 Quebec mosque massacre. Are we going there? Some people might. Not me. Because then I would just as logically have to wonder if Obama was somehow to blame for the 2015 Charleston church massacre of nine black worshippers by white supremacist Dylann Roof, or consider the failed 1958 and 1960 synagogue bomb explosions somehow the fault of Dwight Eisenhower.

On Dec 6, 1989, lone wolf Marc Lepine massacred 14 women at Montreal’s École Polytechnique. He was not affiliated with any political movement, nor was he inspired by an ideological guru. Nobody blamed prime minister Brian Mulroney for the massacre, or the tense and divided political atmosphere around Meech Lake. Nor should they have. Lepine acted on the urgings of his personal demons. But violence directed specifically against women was new and shocking. Swollen grief and anger demanded a vessel large enough to hold it all. Lepine was a lone wolf, but also a man. And feminists did place the blame for the massacre on what would soon be called the “toxic masculinity” inherent in all men. Society complied. That was morally wrong, and furthermore a great cultural mistake. The White Ribbon campaign the massacre inspired raised awareness around the issue of intimate partner violence, but the message was almost invariably linked to a demonization of men, which has encouraged mutual resentment and mistrust between the sexes.

All the individuals behind these attempted and successful acts of human slaughter are mysteries in the end. A divisive and volatile environment may further excite their dark passions, it is true. A national leader who is careless in his often divisive rhetoric does nothing to calm the social waters. But that’s a far cry from actually causing a massacre. And so, when CNN asked Rabbi Jeffrey Myers if Trump would be welcome at the Tree of Life Synagogue, he wisely replied: “The President of the United States is always welcome. I am a citizen, he is my president. He is always welcome.” That was the right, that was the unifying, thing to say.

 

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          PITTSBURGH SYNAGOGUE SLAUGHTER NOT EASILY EXPLAINED                                                                     Tarek Fatah

Toronto Sun, Oct. 30, 2018

 

The slaughter of Jews in Pittsburgh by an alleged anti-Semite cannot be easily explained. After centuries of studying the phenomenon of Jew hatred, few have come up with an answer as to why this tiny segment of our world community faces so much revulsion. Every time there is an incident of violence against Jews, it adds one more ugly scar on the face of our common legacy.

The attack that killed 11 on Saturday in Pittsburgh’s vibrant Jewish community reminded me of the attack on a Jewish community centre in Mumbai, India, 10 years ago. Same target, different assassins. How long will Jews be killed simply because they are too few? Just under 15 million in a world populated by 7 billion other souls. Is it because Jews have contributed far more to humanity than they’ve taken back? Are the rest of us envious of their resilience and ability to survive horrendous discrimination in Christian Europe from medieval times to the Holocaust?

Yesterday, Lorrie Goldstein quoted British Rabbi Jonathan Sacks’ explanation of the irrationality and evil nature of Jew Hatred on these pages. “Before the Holocaust,” Rabbi Sacks notes, “Jews were hated because they were poor and because they were rich; because they were communists and because they were capitalists; because they kept to themselves and because they infiltrated everywhere; because they clung to ancient religious beliefs and because they were rootless cosmopolitans who believed nothing.”

Something changed after the Holocaust. For the first time in a millennia, the Jewish state of Israel was founded in the ancient Jewish homeland of the Temple Mount from which Jews had been driven out many times. And that changed the very form of anti-Semitism. Jew hatred gave way to hating Israel. And among the new anti-Semites came “the radical Islamists and others who deny Israel’s right to exist,” says Rabbi Sacks.

Today, Jew hatred is camouflaged under the guise of solidarity with Palestinians. There is hardly a university campus in North America where the left has not made common cause with right-wing Islamists. Instead of exposing themselves as the Jew haters that they are, they target Israel, not ordinary Jews. It’s not Zimbabwe or China they focus on, and certainly not Saudi Arabia or Iran. No, the new Jew hatred is manifested in the targeting of Israel. A Palestinian state is not what they seek; it is the end of Israel as a Jewish state they desire.

For those of us who are not Jews, the Russian novelist Leo Tolstoy has left us with a gem. In 1891, Tolstoy wrote a short essay, “What is a Jew?” He asked, “What kind of a unique creature is this whom all the rulers and nations of the world have disgraced and crushed, expelled and destroyed, persecuted and drowned, who despite their anger and their fury, continues to live and to flourish?”

Offering his own answer, Tolstoy proposes, “The Jew is the symbol of eternity … the one who is for so long guarded the prophetic message and transmitted it to all mankind. A people such as this can never disappear. The Jew is eternal. He is the embodiment of eternity.”

Let Tolstoy’s message sink into our minds. Let it shape our thoughts. Let’s adorn our hearts with Tolstoy’s message as we attempt to erase latent hatred of the other and appreciate the Jewish people and their Jewish state.

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AMERICAN JEWRY’S FALSE PROPHETS                                                             

Caroline B. Glick

                                                Jerusalem Post, Nov. 1, 2018

Just hours after the largest massacre of Jews in America in US history, the Atlantic Monthly posted a piece by Franklin Foer. In his “Prayer for Squirrel Hill, and for American Jewry,” Foer wrote, “Any strategy for enhancing the security of American Jewry should involve shunning [President Donald] Trump’s Jewish enablers. Their money should be refused, their presence in synagogues not welcome. They have placed our community in danger.” That is, in the shadow of the blood drenched synagogue, Foer declared war on his fellow Jews.

Between a quarter and 30% of American Jews voted for Trump. A quarter of American Jews intend to vote Republican in next week’s election. Foer wants them all to be ostracized because, he says, they are dangerous. Taken to its logical conclusion, Foer’s statement was also a declaration of war against the Jews of Israel. For as much as Foer and his totalitarian comrades hate Trump, Israeli Jews support him. More than 75% of Israeli Jews consider Trump a great friend.

Foer’s comrade Julia Ioffe from GQ magazine made clear the animosity these leftist/anti-Trump American Jewish media figures harbor toward Israel. In a post on Twitter that was at least as incendiary as Foer’s essay, Ioffe wrote, “And a word to my fellow American Jews: This president makes this [massacre] possible. Here. Where you live. I hope the embassy move over there, where you don’t live was worth it.” In other words, Trump’s support for Israel enables him to persecute American Jews. By supporting Trump for supporting Israel, Israeli Jews and Republican Jews enabled the massacre at the Tree of Life Synagogue.

Are they right? Do Israeli Jews and politically conservative American Jews facilitate antisemitism in America by supporting Trump? Is Trump an antisemite who covers his malign intentions toward American Jewry by supporting Israel? Although these questions are absurd on their face, now that The Washington Post’s Dana Milbank feels comfortable claiming that Jews are not safe in Donald Trump’s America, it is important to consider them.

So let us consider what Trump has done and said and compare his actions and statements with those of his immediate predecessor, Barack Obama, who most of the American Jews who now blame Trump and his Jewish supporters for the massacre in Pittsburgh supported. The first question we need to address is, what are Israel’s interests in its relations with the US and how do those interests impact American Jews? Israel has an interest in working in alliance with the United States to counter common threats. Trump shares this interest, and has acted to advance it on multiple fronts.

Trump’s decision to abandon his predecessor’s policy of appeasing Iran in favor of a policy of working with Israel and the Sunni Arab states to counter Iran’s regional aggression and power, and block the regime’s efforts to acquire nuclear weapons, represents a fundamental shift in US foreign policy. It was welcomed by Israel as well as by the Sunni Arab states of the Middle East.

Is this a good or bad thing for American Jewry? Obama’s nuclear deal gave Iran a guaranteed path to nuclear armament within a decade. Since the Iranian regime has repeatedly pledged to annihilate Israel, the deal posed an existential threat to Israel. To secure Senate approval – or rather, to avoid Senate disapproval – of his scandalous deal, the Obama White House directed a media and political strategy of intimidation of lawmakers and American Jewish leaders, abounding with antisemitic demonology. Democratic senators that opposed the deal were under the influence of nefarious “foreign money.”

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was transformed in Obama’s media echo chamber into the enemy of America. AIPAC lobbyists who campaigned against the deal were branded as agents of a foreign power – that is, traitors – seeking to undermine US interests for the benefit of a hostile foreign power – that is, Israel. The Obama administration’s aggression against Jewish Americans exercising their lawful right to petition their government was unprecedented. The fight it waged against the American Jewish community left the community weakened and vulnerable to attack from the Left as never before.

By disavowing the nuclear deal and endorsing the view of the Jewish community, Trump delegitimized Obama’s bigoted assault against American Jews. Obviously, this is a good thing for American Jews. Israel has an interest in securing its position in the world and ending its second-class status in the international community. That second-class status was long emblemized in the US’s abject refusal to locate the US Embassy in Israel to Israel’s capital city Jerusalem. That longstanding American refusal to recognize Israeli sovereignty over the City of David legitimized the systematic persecution of Israel at the UN and in other international arenas.

Since Jerusalem has been the center of Jewish life and faith for 3,000 years, it is concrete proof that Israel is not a colonial implant and that Jews are the native people of the land. By refusing to recognize Israel’s sovereignty in Jerusalem, the US joined the rest of the world in calling into question its very right to exist and lend credence to the antisemitic claim that Jews are foreigners in their historic homeland. Trump’s decision to move the US Embassy to Jerusalem and his subsequent decision to subordinate the American Consulate in Jerusalem to the US Embassy was a total renunciation of this long-standing bigotry against the Jewish people. Trump’s action was self-evidently a good thing for American Jews. No longer do American Jews need to justify their attachment to Israel. No longer do American Jews need to come on bended knee to the White House and entreat the president to recognize the historical record.

Contrast Trump’s actions with Obama’s actions. Not only did Obama refuse to transfer the US Embassy to Jerusalem, he rejected even symbolic acceptance of Israeli sovereignty in Jerusalem. The Obama State Department erased all the captions on archival photos of American dignitaries in Jerusalem that referred to the location as Jerusalem, Israel. This petty act demonstrated a deep-seated hostility to the history of the Jewish people and was nothing if not bigoted. Yet, by the lights of Foer, Ioffe, Milbank and their fellow American Jewish Trump-haters, Obama was a friend of American Jews, and Trump and his Jewish supporters are their enemies…[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link]

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FARMERS AND FIGHTERS: THE MAKING OF THE LAND

Douglas Feith

Tablet, Oct. 24, 2018

Last autumn was the Balfour Declaration’s hundredth birthday. This month marks a hundred years since Britain’s General Allenby completed his World War I conquest of Palestine and Syria. These centenaries relate to the most important–the most basic–argument that anti-Zionists use against Israel today. It’s the assertion that Palestine is Arab land and the Jews had no right to steal it from the Palestinian Arabs. In its somewhat more sophisticated form, the argument is that British imperialists had no right to steal the Palestinians’ country and give it to the Jews.

If you had a child in college and she came home and said she was challenged on this point by a classmate, could you provide her with a response? One way to answer is this: For the 400 years before World War I, Palestine was part of the Ottoman Empire, so it was owned by the Turks, not by the Arabs, let alone by the Arabs of Palestine. Palestine is an old but imprecise geographical term. It remained imprecise because there was never a country called Palestine. Even when—long ago— it was under Arab rule, Palestine was never ruled by its own Arab inhabitants.

So it’s not accurate to say that Palestine was a country, nor to say it was Arab land. Neither the Jews nor the British stole it from the Arabs. The original Zionists came to Palestine without the backing of any imperialist or colonialist power. They bought the land on which they settled. And before Britain invaded Palestine in World War I, the Ottoman Turks had joined Germany and attacked Allied forces.

Was it an injustice for Britain to issue the Balfour Declaration in favor of a Jewish national home in Palestine? The question is of more than historical interest for it relates to the current controversy about Israel’s nation-state law, which was adopted this past July. Among other controversial things, that law said, “The fulfillment of the right of national self-determination in the State of Israel is unique to the Jewish people.”

Consider the Balfour Declaration’s context. When the British war cabinet approved it on Oct. 31, 1917, the world was more than three years into the Great War, the catastrophe now known as World War I, which ultimately destroyed four major empires. Britain was fighting for its life and, because the war was going badly, the government of British Prime Minister H.H. Asquith had fallen at the end of 1916 and David Lloyd George had come to power.

Lloyd George was singularly attuned to the importance of propaganda. He was the first British prime minister in history who had grown up poor. His childhood home didn’t have running water. His political rise testified to the democratization of politics and the power of public opinion.  Within 48 hours after he became prime minister, his cabinet resolved to review British propaganda worldwide. He hoped to win more popular support for the Allies in Greece, Italy, Russia, America and elsewhere. Among British propaganda’s many target audiences was world Jewry. Not unreasonably, the Jews generally were seen as pro-Zionist, with useful influence especially in revolutionary Russia and in Woodrow Wilson’s America.

By embracing Zionism, the British government wanted to give Jews a particular interest in Allied victory. In his memoirs, Lloyd George explained that the Balfour Declaration was “part of our propagandist strategy,” its timing “determined by considerations of war policy.” In other words, colonialism didn’t bring Britain to Palestine. Britain didn’t seize Palestine from an unoffending native population. It conquered the land not from the Arabs, but from Turkey, which (as noted) had joined Britain’s enemies in the war. The Arabs in Palestine fought for Turkey against Britain. The land was enemy territory.

Supporting Zionism appealed to Lloyd George, Balfour and other officials not just on strategic grounds, but also for moral reasons. They sympathized with the Jewish national cause. Zionism was an answer to the historical Jewish question, a way to remedy some of the harm shamefully done to the Jewish people over history. And it would give Jews an opportunity to normalize their place in the world, by building up a national center and a refuge, a country in their ancient homeland where they could become the majority and enjoy self-determination as a people

 

When those officials were young men, George Eliot, in her influential 1876 novel Daniel Deronda, foresaw the creation of a movement to create a “new Jewish polity.” The Jews then, she wrote, in the voice of a Jewish character, “shall have an organic centre” and “the outraged Jew shall have a defense in the court of nations, as the outraged Englishman or American. And the world will gain as Israel gains.”…

 [To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link]

 

Article adapted from Douglas Feith’s Keynote Address to

CIJR’s 30th Anniversary Gala in Toronto, 21 October 2018

 

CIJR Wishes All Our Friends & Supporters: Shabbat Shalom!

 

Contents

 

On Topic Links

Israel’s Role in the Struggle Against Antisemitism: David M. Weinberg, Jerusalem Post, Nov. 1, 2018—Education and Diaspora Affairs Minister Naftali Bennett rushed to Pittsburgh this week to represent the government of Israel at memorial events following the terrorist massacre in the Tree of Life Synagogue. So did Israeli Consul General in New York Dani Dayan.

If the Synagogue Shooter Were Muslim, the Media Would Be Defending Him: Daniel Greenfield, Sultan Knish, Oct. 31, 2018—Two types of people plot attacks against Jewish synagogues and community centers: Nazis and Muslims. In 1999, Buford O. Furrow, a white supremacist, opened fire at a Jewish Community Center in the Los Angeles area. He wounded three little boys, their teenage female counselor and an elderly female receptionist. He told the FBI that he wanted this to be “a wake-up call to America to kill Jews.”

Tears Were Shed: Justin Amler, Jewish Press, Oct. 31, 2018—I’ve been staring at my screen for the last few hours trying to work out my feelings about the Pittsburgh massacre. I’ve been trying to find the right words to show how I feel. But how do you explain the horror we saw today?

The Heart Breaks for Many Reasons: Editorial, Arlene From Israel, Oct. 30, 2018—Yesterday, my heart broke over the senseless, anti-Semitic attack in Squirrel Hill that took the lives of 11 Jews, during Shabbat, while they were in synagogue.  I had prayed for healing for the mourners and for the community, and I will continue to pray.

 

 

 

 

SYNAGOGUE MASSACRE A REMINDER THAT ANTISEMITISM IS A FEATURE OF—YET AN “ABHORRENT ABERRATION” IN—THE U.S

Synagogue Murders are a Sinister Sign of Our Times: Gregg Roman, The Hill, Oct. 28, 2018 — Paris. Tel Aviv. Toulouse. Mumbai. Brussels. Djerba. Copenhagen. Jerusalem. Kansas City — and now, Pittsburgh.

The Futile Search for Meaning in Antisemitic Crimes: Jonathan S. Tobin, JNS, Oct. 28, 2018— When something terrible happens, we demand explanations.

The U.S. Nears its Boiling Point: Niall Ferguson, Globe and Mail, Oct. 29, 2018— At the very beginning of the Cold War, Martyl Langsdorf, an artist who was married to the physicist Alexander Langsdorf, came up with the image of the Doomsday Clock.

Anti-Semitism: An Abhorrent Aberration in the USA: Yoram Ettinger, Algemeiner, Oct. 29, 2018— The October 27, 2018 massacre at the Tree of Life Synagogue, in Pittsburgh, PA, was an egregious reminder that since the early 17th century, antisemitism has been a systematic feature of — yet an abhorrent aberration in — the US.

On Topic Links

The Lives Lost in the Pittsburgh Synagogue Shooting: Washington Post, Oct. 28, 2018

Before Pittsburgh: The Nine Worst Global Attacks on Jewish Sites: Seth J. Frantzman, Jerusalem Post, Oct. 29, 2018

ANALYSIS: How Should Trump ‘Extract the Poison of Antisemitism?’: Lahav Harkov, Jerusalem Post, Oct. 28, 2018

Synagogue Shooting Shows Americans of all Faiths and Political Persuasions Must Unite Against Hate: Rabbi Abraham Cooper, Fox News, Oct. 28, 2018

 

          SYNAGOGUE MURDERS ARE A SINISTER SIGN OF OUR TIMES                                                                  Gregg Roman

The Hill, Oct. 28, 2018

Paris. Tel Aviv. Toulouse. Mumbai. Brussels. Djerba. Copenhagen. Jerusalem. Kansas City — and now, Pittsburgh. An anti-Semitic massacre in a sacred space. As Jeff Finkelstein, CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, said yesterday, “This should not be happening in a synagogue. This should not be happening, period.” Jews, synagogues, Jewish institutions and Jewish collectivity have been attacked across the world over the past 10 years, and this list is far from complete.

Every accusation and its opposite have been thrown at the Jewish people to justify these attacks. Jews are too left-wing, Jews are too right-wing. Jews assimilate too much, Jews don’t mix enough with others. Jews are behind capitalism; “Remember Rothschild,” they say. Others say Jews are behind socialism and communism; “Remember Marx,” they insist.

For 2,000 years, Jews were enslaved, oppressed, expelled, burned and gassed, all the while being told to go back to where they came from. Today, those who hate Jews tell those who returned to their ancestral and indigenous homeland to leave. Jews are frequently told that we are white — almost always as an accusation — yet no other people in the history of man have been targeted for so long, and in such numbers, by those who stand for white supremacy.

Anti-Semitism knows no logic. It knows no rules and appears to affect seeming foes on the political and ideological spectrum. Only a few days before accused shooter Robert Bowers mowed down 11 innocent souls at Tree of Life Synagogue because he believed “all Jews should die” for helping immigrants at the U.S. border, hate preacher Louis Farrakhan, the Nation of Islam leader, compared Jews to termites and called them Satanic in a dehumanizing manner reminiscent of Nazi incitement and propaganda. Bowers and Farrakhan probably agreed about little else except for their hatred of the Jewish people.

No other hatred unites and rallies such disparate voices, using the same classic motifs of hate. In Europe, they have seen how the extremes on the political spectrum share their hatred of Jews. Far-left politicians in the British Labour Party retweet neo-Nazis, and French comedian Dieudonné M’bala M’bala, who began on the anti-racist, far-left, now counts former Marxist and current right-wing radical Alain Soral and Jean-Marie Le Pen, founder of the racist far-right National Front, as friends and allies, to give two such examples. Their common ground is only their Holocaust denial and their hatred of all things Jewish.

However, this pincer movement that has engulfed the Jews of Europe and elsewhere should not be allowed to take root in the United States. We must condemn and shun Louis Farrakhan with the same vehemence as we do white supremacist Richard Spencer, or else the attacks against Jews will continue to rise. In its annual audit of anti-Semitic incidents in the United States, the Anti-Defamation League chronicled a 57 percent rise in incidents in 2017 over the previous year. That included everything from bomb threats and assaults, to vandalism, desecration of cemeteries and the flooding of college campuses with anti-Semitic posters and graffiti.

According to FBI statistics adjusted to population size, Jews are more likely to be the target of hate crimes than any other minority in the U.S. A very recent Brandeis University survey showed that 84 percent of the Pittsburgh Jewish community were concerned about anti-Semitism, and 16 percent personally experienced anti-Semitism in the past year. “The perception of anti-Semitism in the community may be worse than the reality,” the study noted. Unfortunately, on Saturday, the reality was far worse than even the most worrying perception. As the former director of the Community Relations Council of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, I rarely have come across a community so optimistic, united and committed to the wider world. Upon his installation as rabbi of Tree of Life in June 2018, Jeffrey Myers said: “I will endeavor to continue to steer a course for us into a bright and bold future, but that cannot be accomplished alone.”

Pittsburgh was a Jewish community that strove for inclusion, diversity and pluralism. Whereas some communities have been wracked with political or ideological differences, all voices, from J Street to the ZOA, sat around the same table to try and focus on what united them rather than that which divided them. It is a Jewish community deeply committed to universal values and helping all people regardless of race, religion or identity. They followed the dictum in Ethics of the Fathers, “Do not separate yourself from the community.”

Saturday’s suspect, Bowers, reportedly shouted that “all Jews must die” during his massacre, because he hated the fact that Jewish groups like HIAS, an American non-profit organization providing humanitarian aid and assistance to refugees all over the world, was treating and assisting the dreamers who seek a better life in the United States.

Nevertheless, the Jewish people will, despite the incessant attacks, continue to grasp the kernel of hope for a better world. Even in its darkest hours, members of the Pittsburgh Jewish community are holding rallies against hate — all hate. However, as Rabbi Myers said, this course cannot be achieved alone. We need allies and those who are ready to fight all hate regardless of its origin. There are rules for hatred against Jews, which some will always try to justify, and there are rules for all others. Antisemitism, it could be argued, is a prejudice that is made unique among all other hatreds. It is long past time that we grapple with this issue, because it has been ignored for too long. Antisemitism in the United States is very real, and deadly.

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                    THE FUTILE SEARCH FOR MEANING IN ANTISEMITIC CRIMES                                                                    Jonathan S. Tobin                                                                                                                                              JNS, Oct. 28, 2018

When something terrible happens, we demand explanations. Awful and irrational events spawn conspiracy theories because it’s part of the human condition to need to make sense of the world, even when the world makes no sense.

That is all the more true when an atrocity such as the shooting at Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life Synagogue occurs. The wholesale slaughter at a house of worship on the Sabbath is the sort of act that, almost by definition, defies explanation. What sane person would seek to murder total strangers at prayer? What possible end could be served by the spilling of innocent blood in this manner?

Our sole concern should be to comfort the families of the slain, to honor their memories and to heal a community torn by sorrow. Yet it is almost instinctual to seek explanations that place the incomprehensible in a context we can accept more easily. Doing so enables us to avoid the truth that we live in a world in which irrational prejudice can strike anytime, anywhere, in ways that shake us to our very core. If the real villain is a familiar target of our anger, rather than age-old hatred of Jews or the deranged ravings of an extremist, it helps us channel our rage and sorrow in a direction that seems productive, even if it is nothing of the kind.

So it is hardly surprising that the slaughter at a synagogue in a quiet, leafy neighborhood would provoke reactions that tell us more about the sickening divisions within our society than anything else. For some, the only real culprit here is US President Donald Trump. In particular, his demagoguery about illegal immigrants is seen as a green light for an attack on a synagogue and a community that is generally supportive of asylum-seekers, such as those in a caravan from Honduras that Trump has denounced as an oncoming threat.

That has led some, like former New Republic editor Franklin Foer, to assert in The Atlantic that the only way to assure Jewish security after Pittsburgh is to ostracize all Jews who support Trump, since in his words “they have placed their community in danger.” Following the same theme, journalist Julia Ioffe also claimed that the fault for Pittsburgh belongs to those in the pro-Israel community who supported Trump’s move of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. In a Twitter take of breathtaking obtuseness, Ioffe quipped that “I hope the embassy move over there, where you don’t live, was worth it.” She was soon appearing on CNN to double down on her spewing of such bile.

Over at the Forward, writer Peter Beinart had a more general condemnation for any Jew who agreed with Trump about illegal immigration. According to him, “Trumpism”—or at least that portion of the administration’s policies that concern enforcing existing immigration laws or expressing worry about the spread of Islamism—and those Jews who share such legitimate concerns are betraying “Jewish ethics and Jewish lives.”

But while Trump can be blamed for the coarsening of our political culture—and while his statements about immigration are often inaccurate and inflammatory—the blithe assertion that the president is an antisemite or the smear that his supporters are allies and enablers of accused Pittsburgh shooter Robert Bowers is wrong on two counts. The first and most obvious is that Bowers was a critic of Trump, specifically because of his sympathy with Jews, the presence of many Jews in key administration posts and his support for Israel, which exceeds that of all of his recent predecessors. He viewed Trump as an ally of Jews—not someone who had encouraged him to attack them.

The second is that the attempt to shoehorn Pittsburgh into the “resistance” narrative, in which Trump is seen as unleashing a wave of persecution against Jews and other minorities in America, misunderstands the nature of the antisemitism that Bowers espoused. While Bowers may have seen the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society and a synagogue whose members sought to aid immigrants and asylum-seekers as justifying his attack, this does no more to explain his rage than any of the other excuses that antisemites have deployed over the ages.

While some have always sought to blame Jews for the hate that was directed against them—a trend that continues today with those who believe support for Israel is a red flag that invites attacks—antisemitism is always about the antisemites, not the Jews. It is, as scholar Ruth Wisse wrote, the most successful ideology of the 20th century—a virus that morphed from fascism to Nazism to communism and then Islamism. The continuation of this trend in the 21st century has nothing to do with Trump, and everything to do with the fact that Jews remain a convenient scapegoat for extremists of all political and religious stripes.

There is much to lament in our current political culture, in which the tribes of true believers rule on both ends of the spectrum, and in which neither side is prepared to acknowledge the way they have sought to delegitimize their political opponents. But what happened in Pittsburgh is a product of a deeper malady—one that, at present, has no political cure. A world in which we can’t neatly place the blame for Pittsburgh on a political foe who many Jews despise is less frightening than the complex reality. Trump is both a friend of the Jews and Israel, as well as a symptom of a destructive political trend that has helped loosen the bonds of community that is driving us further apart. Still, he is not responsible for the actions of an unhinged extremist.

If we acknowledge that despite his flaws, Trump is neither an antisemite nor the reason for antisemitic violence here—or anywhere else in a world in which a rising tide of Jew hatred continues to surge—then we are forced to confront the same frustrating truth about this virus that previous generations struggled with. It’s easy to see why putting this in a political context is of some comfort, but those who do so in the course of a futile search for meaning in antisemitic hate crimes do neither the Jews nor the cause of civilization any service.

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THE U.S. NEARS ITS BOILING POINT                                                                                                 Niall Ferguson

Globe and Mail, Oct. 29, 2018

At the very beginning of the Cold War, Martyl Langsdorf, an artist who was married to the physicist Alexander Langsdorf, came up with the image of the Doomsday Clock. It appeared in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists to illustrate the fear of many physicists – including some who had been involved in the creation of the atomic bomb – that a “technology-induced catastrophe” might be terrifyingly close. Midnight on the Doomsday Clock meant nuclear Armageddon.

I have no doubt that somewhere in academia someone is busy devising a civil war Doomsday Clock. Any day now they’ll publish it under the headline: “Two minutes to Fort Sumter.” But just how close is the United States to the kind of internecine slaughter that began in April 1861? There is a kind of cultural civil war already being fought on social-media platforms. With the mid-term elections just over a week away, that culture war gets more febrile by the day.

Of course, the culture war is no more a real war than the trade war U.S. President Donald Trump has launched against China. Nevertheless, the news last week that amateurish pipe bombs had been mailed to a dozen of Mr. Trump’s best-known critics – including Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, the hedge fund billionaire George Soros and the actor Robert De Niro – provided the cue for new prophecies of a second U.S. Civil War.

The arrest on Friday of Cesar Sayoc was immediately greeted with cries of “Gotcha!” from the usual quarters. His van was covered in pro-Trump stickers including one reading “CNN Sucks.” Ha! “Trump owns this,” declared a normally sober Washington correspondent. I wonder. I don’t much like Mr. Trump’s regular criticisms of the mainstream media and occasional glorification of body-slamming. But a direct causal relationship to a nut posting a bunch of homemade bombs?

Saturday’s massacre at a synagogue in Pittsburgh makes matters much worse. Mr. Trump is no anti-Semite, but some alt-right elements routinely abuse Jews. But then again, the hard left has its anti-Semites too. That people on both sides of the political divide are using intemperate language is undeniable, even if the left will always insist that the other side is worse. That there is a potential for an increase in political violence in the United States seems clear. By European standards, there are terrifying numbers of lethal weapons in private hands. But civil war? Some of the people who make this argument can be dismissed as scaremongers. When a Canadian novelist fantasizes about Mr. Trump being assassinated, the United States tearing itself apart, and all the nice Americans moving to Canada, it’s better to avert your gaze. Same drill when a marine turned talk-show host calls for red states to secede if a future Democratic administration comes for their guns, or when a New York progressive with fishy Russian connections argues for Californian secession.

But when my colleague at the Hoover Institution, historian Victor Davis Hanson, warns that we are “at the brink of a veritable civil war,” we all need to pay attention. I also take seriously the work of Peter Turchin, who has been arguing for some time that several leading indicators of political instability (notably inequality) are set to peak around 2020, making the United States “particularly vulnerable to violent upheaval.” Mr. Hanson’s argument is that the tensions arising from globalization, the internet, campus leftism and illegal immigration have led to an ideological split that is also geographical. The current toxic atmosphere puts him in mind not only of the 1850s, but also of the 5th century BC, when “stasis” (meaning internal strife) tore apart the ancient Greek city states…

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

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ANTI-SEMITISM: AN ABHORRENT ABERRATION IN THE USA

Yoram Ettinger

Algemeiner, Oct. 29, 2018

The October 27, 2018 massacre at the Tree of Life Synagogue, in Pittsburgh, PA, was an egregious reminder that since the early 17th century, antisemitism has been a systematic feature of — yet an abhorrent aberration in — the US. At the same time, American society has demonstrated 400 years of respect for Judaism, Judeo-Christian values, and the Jewish state.

For instance, Peter Stuyvesant, the first Dutch Governor of New York/New Netherlands (1647-1664), failed in his attempt to block the immigration of Jews to the colony, but prohibited them from constructing a synagogue and serving in the local militia. Moreover, he confiscated Jewish property and levied a special tax solely on Jews, claiming that they were “deceitful and enemies of Jesus Christ.”

The state of the Jewish community improved in the aftermath of the 1664 British conquest of New York and the introduction of a series of civil covenants in the various colonies (e.g., the 1641 Massachusetts Body of Liberties). It was further improved as a result of the 1789 ratification of the US Constitution, which enhanced civil liberties — in a drastic departure from the state of mind of the European churches and monarchies — partially inspired by the Five Books of Moses, and especially by the concept of the Jubilee (Leviticus 25:10).

Still, European-imported antisemitism established itself in the US, although as a significantly lower profile in the newly-created society and governance. The latter has expanded liberty over and beyond the European standards, while severely restricting the playing field of potential antisemitism. For example, in December 1862, General Ulysses Grant issued the infamous General Order No. 11, ordering the expulsion of all Jews from Kentucky, Tennessee, and Mississippi, stating: “The Jews, as a class, violate every regulation of trade established by the Treasury Department.” However, in January 1863, President Lincoln — known for his deep respect for Judaism — ordered Grant to revoke the order. Moreover, in the aftermath of the Civil War, General Grant contended that he signed the order without studying it.

In the early 1920s, Henry Ford — the only American mentioned favorably in Hitler’s Mein Kampf and praised by Heinrich Himmler — wrote: “If fans wish to know the trouble with American baseball, they have it in three words — too much Jew.” However, in January 1921, 119 distinguished Americans, such as President Woodrow Wilson, former President William Howard Taft, and the poet Robert Frost, signed a petition denouncing Ford’s antisemitism, including his dissemination of the 1903 antisemitic Russian-fabricated The Protocols of the Elders of Zion. In 1927, Ford apologized for his antisemitic conduct.

During the 1920s and the 1930s, Father Charles Coughlin leveraged his weekly antisemitic radio program to praise Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, and Japan’s Emperor Hirohito. However, upon the 1939 outbreak of the Second World War, he lost most of his listeners and followers.

An accurate depiction of most Americans’ stance on antisemitism was exposed, in December 1993, by the reaction of most of the 80,000 residents of Billings, Montana to a paving stone hurled by a white supremacist through a window of a Jewish home displaying a Chanukah candelabra and a Star of David. The hate crime was followed by the Billings Gazette’s full-page color image of a Chanukah candelabra, along with the recommendation to display it on home windows in solidarity with the Jewish community. In addition, some residents took to the street holding Chanukah candelabras, demonstrating a city-wide determination to stand up against the bullying tactics of white supremacists. Furthermore, solidarity with the Jewish community has become almost an annual event attended by top Billings and Montana officials.

While the destructive and lethal potential of antisemitism must not be underestimated, countries should not be judged by the eruption of such an abomination, but by the way they prosecute it. The 400-year-old Judeo-Christian foundations — and track record — of the USA assure that antisemitism shall be constrained, prosecuted, and punished most decisively.

Contents

On Topic Links

The Lives Lost in the Pittsburgh Synagogue Shooting: Washington Post, Oct. 28, 2018 —They were the synagogue’s most faithful.

Before Pittsburgh: The Nine Worst Global Attacks on Jewish Sites: Seth J. Frantzman, Jerusalem Post, Oct. 29, 2018—The largest targeted murder of Jews in US history in Pittsburgh is one of many attacks over the last decades which have targeted Jews in synagogues and community centers throughout the world.

ANALYSIS: How Should Trump ‘Extract the Poison of Antisemitism?’: Lahav Harkov, Jerusalem Post, Oct. 28, 2018

Synagogue Shooting Shows Americans of all Faiths and Political Persuasions Must Unite Against Hate: Rabbi Abraham Cooper, Fox News, Oct. 28, 2018—I learned about Saturday’s mass murder of 11 congregants at a Pittsburgh synagogue while traveling in Austria with a group of 150 Jews from around the world.

Frederick Krantz: NEVER AGAIN! AND NEVER HERE, IN NORTH AMERICA!

The Canadian Institute for Jewish Research condemns the vicious murders of eleven Jews in the Etz Chaim/Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and extends its profound sympathy to the families of the victims and wounded, including the courageous police who, risking their own live, rushed to defend the congregation and disarmed the assailant.

Rising antisemitism, of both the extreme left and right, nurtured by the dynamics of the ubiquitous “social media”, has been well documented recently in the U.S. and Canada, including a rising tempo of synagogue desecrations. We also observe with increasing anxiety the toleration of virulent anti-Israel sentiments among elements of the left (“progressive”) wing of the U.S.’s Democratic Party. This phenomenon, not dissimilar from the situation in Europe and Great Britain (where Jeremy Corbyn, a known and unrepentant antisemite, currently heads the British Labour Party), is deeply concerning.

In North America, one major channel for the revival and spread of the “longest hatred” marking Western societies has been the Arab-backed and pro-Palestinian BDS and related anti-Israel and anti-Zionist movements on University campuses, which have manipulated freedom of expression and “speech codes”   to delegitimate Jewish Israel and harass and break up Israel-related speakers. 

This growing antisemitism, on and off campuses, must be immediately confronted by both Jewish and non-Jewish organizations, as well as by government, educational, and police officials at all levels.  Every effort must be made to maintain the openness, safety, and decorum of American public and religious life, and not to have to adopt here the European practice of permanent police and military supervision of Jewish schools and places of worship.

To this end, we urge all private and public organizations, agencies and educational institutions, at all levels, immediately to adopt the working definition of anti-Semitism drawn up in 2015 by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance:  

 “Anti-Semitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews.  Rhetorical and physical manifestations of anti-Semitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.”

The following examples may serve as illustrations:

Manifestations might include the targeting of the state of Israel, conceived as a Jewish collectivity. However, criticism of Israel similar to that leveled against any other country cannot be regarded as anti-Semitic. Anti-Semitism frequently charges Jews with conspiring to harm humanity, and it is often used to blame Jews for “why things go wrong.” It is expressed in speech, writing, visual forms and action, and employs sinister stereotypes and negative character traits.

Contemporary examples of anti-Semitism in public life, the media, schools, the workplace, and in the religious sphere could, taking into account the overall context, include, but are not limited to:

  • Calling for, aiding, or justifying the killing or harming of Jews in the name of a radical ideology or an extremist view of religion.
  • Making mendacious, dehumanizing, demonizing, or stereotypical allegations about Jews as such or the power of Jews as collective – such as, especially but not exclusively, the myth about a world Jewish conspiracy or of Jews controlling the media, economy, government or other societal institutions.
  • Accusing Jews as a people of being responsible for real or imagined wrongdoing committed by a single Jewish person or group, or even for acts committed by non-Jews.
  • Denying the fact, scope, mechanisms (g. gas chambers) or intentionality of the genocide of the Jewish people at the hands of National Socialist Germany and its supporters and accomplices during World War II (the Holocaust).
  • Accusing the Jews as a people, or Israel as a state, of inventing or exaggerating the Holocaust.
  • Accusing Jewish citizens of being more loyal to Israel, or to the alleged priorities of Jews worldwide, than to the interests of their own nations.
  • Denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, g., by claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist endeavor.
  • Applying double standards by requiring of it a behavior not expected or demanded of any other democratic nation.
  • Using the symbols and images associated with classic anti-Semitism (g., claims of Jews killing Jesus or blood libel) to characterize Israel or Israelis.
  • Drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis.
  • Holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel.

Anti-Semitic acts are criminal when they are so defined by law (for example, denial of the Holocaust or distribution of anti-Semitic materials in some countries).

Criminal acts are anti-Semitic when the targets of attacks, whether they are people or property – such as buildings, schools, places of worship and cemeteries – are selected because they are, or are perceived to be, Jewish or linked to Jews.

Anti-Semitic discrimination is the denial to Jews of opportunities or services available to others and is illegal in many countries.

Adoption of this clear definition, coupled with its rapid, and    effective, application in particular cases, will—with resolute action at all levels of private and public institutions, governmental, educational, media and religious—contribute to preventing vicious and murderous events like the Tree of Life Congregation killings. 

All North American ethnic and religious groups, as well as all individuals, must be free to exercise the precious individual rights guaranteed us by our democratic governments and public laws, and by our open society’s liberal traditions.

And all social media providers must also subscribe to the general definition given here, and act rapidly to remove or close down racist, antisemitic posts and sites violating its clear guidelines.

Let us hope that the Jewish community, in face of this vicious assault, reaffirming its unity and identification with the state of Israel, will issue from this tragedy stronger and more determined than before. The only answer to antisemitism and racism, whenever and wherever they raise their ugly heads, is to defeat them.

Never again! And never here, in North America!!

 

Professor Frederick Krantz

Director, Canadian Institute for Jewish Research                 

NEW ANTISEMITISM PROPAGATED BY FAR-LEFT “PROGRESSIVES”

Normalizing Anti-Semitism in the US: Dr. Asaf Romirowsky, BESA, Oct. 12, 2018— In his 1940 film The Ghost Breakers, Bob Hope finds himself in Cuba facing a strange menace – zombies.

The Progressive Movement and Antisemitism: Joshua S. Block, Algemeiner, Oct. 10, 2018— For most of us, there is a reflexive tendency to think of antisemitism as something that is propagated by the alt-right — white supremacists, the KKK, or neo-Nazi groups.

Bavarian Anti-Semitism Rears its Ugly Head: Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld, Arutz Sheva, Oct. 4, 2018— A member of a Jewish community in Bavaria was told by his Muslim neighbor that he had taken his children out of a Koran school because it called for killing Jews.

Universalism, Particularism, and Anti-Semitism: Rafael Castro, BESA, Oct. 21, 2018— Anti-Semitism is the world’s oldest hatred.

On Topic Links

Noted UK Historian: British Jews Questioning Future in Country Due to Corbyn Antisemitism Scandals: Algemeiner, Oct. 10, 2018

Canada Regrets Turning Away Jewish Refugees on St Louis Ship in 1939: Jeremy Sharon, Jerusalem Post, Oct. 24, 2018

The West’s New Antisemitism Crisis: Why Right Now?: Alexander H. Joffe, BESA, Sept. 23, 2018

Once Again, the Media Whitewashes Antisemitism Around the World: Sean Durns, Algemeiner, Oct. 3, 2018

 

                             NORMALIZING ANTI-SEMITISM IN THE US                                                                         Dr. Asaf Romirowsky

BESA, Oct. 12, 2018

In his 1940 film The Ghost Breakers, Bob Hope finds himself in Cuba facing a strange menace – zombies. An acquaintance explains, “A zombie has no will of his own. You see them sometimes walking around blindly with dead eyes, following orders, not knowing what they do, not caring,” to which Hope famously replies, “You mean like Democrats?” Twenty-five years after the Oslo peace accords, the progressive Left, which now loudly dominates the Democratic Party, is walking around “with dead eyes, following orders” when it comes to the Middle East and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Upstart Democratic congressional candidate Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez decried the “occupation of Palestine” during a television interview but was at a loss when pressed to explain what she actually meant.

Even a moderate Democrat like Cory Booker, previously close to the Jewish community, saw fit to pose with BDS representatives as a means of flaunting his progressive credentials. In general, the progressive view sees Jews not only as “white” but as racists and victimizers because of their presumed power. All this exemplifies the slow erosion of Israel’s status in American culture.

But the disconnect runs even deeper. Like Cortez, the children of the Oslo era don’t remember the negotiations in the 1990s, or then-PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat for that matter, and have grown up on slogans with buzzwords like “occupation” and “intifada.” On the other hand, this generation, both in the Middle East and outside it, is extremely active online. In fact, 63% of Palestinian kids have access to the internet on a computer and 51% report they own a smartphone. The internet is already playing a significant role in their lives and what they are seeing is the Palestinian “resistance” against Israel, not Palestinian society suffering under Hamas or Palestinian Authority oppression.

The most ostentatious confrontations take place on Twitter and Facebook, where Palestinians sow allegations of destroyed villages and war crimes, going as far as claiming that Tel Aviv was founded on the ruins of invented villages. Instant gratification, yes. Honesty, not so much. The same trends are evident in higher education, where there has been a notable increase in online classes. In such a setting, there is less opportunity for debate and discussion. Our growing collective dependence on technology and social media is undeniable, but these trends – and the general tone of politics – reduce complex issues into sound bites and thereby drive polarization.

One of the major themes of Oslo was to generate trust through confidence-building measures. New mechanisms were put in place to ensure equal rights in employment and policing, and militia weapons were decommissioned under international supervision. The hope was to build a high level of trust through face-to-face interaction. Today’s social media-driven politics achieves the exact opposite of those confidence-building steps. We are left only with the option of parsing online discussions and debates in order to understand the general attitudes. The hard work of building trust is gone and in its place we are left with zombies blindly following slogans.

When Arafat rejected the Camp David II accord back in 2000, it devastated the liberal left-wing camp. They couldn’t understand how Arafat could reject the prospect of a real Palestinian state. Today’s progressive Left, led by Bernie Sanders and others like him, is further removed from the facts than the Democratic Party was under Clinton. They don’t understand that Palestinian nationalism never saw the conflict as one between two national groups with legitimate claims and aspirations. They fail to recognize that Arafat and his successors professed support for a two-state solution as a means of appeasing the West.

All of this has led to a steady normalization of anti-Semitism in American society, particularly in progressive circles. One of the most pernicious effects of this normalization relates to the discourse on Israel. A relentless misrepresentation of human rights violations, slanderous talk of Israeli “ethnic cleansing” and “genocide” and bitter attacks on Israelis, their international supporters, and the peace process itself have taken a massive toll on American civil discourse.

 

Contents

   

                    THE PROGRESSIVE MOVEMENT AND ANTISEMITISM                                                                Joshua S. Block                                                                                                                                       Algemeiner, Oct. 10, 2018

For most of us, there is a reflexive tendency to think of antisemitism as something that is propagated by the alt-right — white supremacists, the KKK, or neo-Nazi groups. That version of antisemitism was on full display during the violent protests that rocked Charlottesville last year. For us, Charlottesville was like muscle memory. We’ve seen it before, and we know exactly what it means.

But what happens when the hate comes from somewhere unexpected, somewhere much closer to home? What happens when it comes from your friends and allies, and is disguised as something else? This new form of antisemitism, which is being propagated by elements of the far-left, has a name: I’m talking about the pseudo-academic concept of “intersectionality.” It’s one of the most significant challenges facing our community.

Intersectionality is the radical academic theory that holds that all forms of social oppression are inexorably linked. It has become a code word for anti-American, anti-Western, anti-Israel, and antisemitic bigotry. Nowhere has adoption of this radical paradigm been more pronounced than on college campuses where, in the name of “identity politics” and “solidarity,” intersectionality has forced artificial coalitions between causes that have nothing to do with each other — except a hatred for their fellow students who are “privileged” because they are white, heterosexual, and especially Jewish. And that’s exactly what makes this form of far-left antisemitism so dangerous and so insidious — it is cloaked in the language of progressive idealism, and is far more nuanced than traditional alt-right antisemitism.

Let me provide you with some examples. Linda Sarsour is an intersectional feminist and one of the organizers of the Women’s March on Washington. She openly supports anti-Israel Muslim groups that tolerate, if not accept, “honor killings” and genital mutilation of women. Because of her association with the Women’s March and other causes, however, Sarsour is viewed by many as a legitimate representative of the oppressed and disenfranchised.

Here’s the truth: Sarsour is an antisemite and BDS supporter, who once posed for a photo with a former Hamas operative. She often uses the hashtags #BDS and #FreePalestine on her tweets, and once tweeted that “Nothing is creepier than Zionism.” Sarsour has encouraged Muslims not to “humanize” Israelis, and charged that there is no room in the feminist movement for those who support Israel’s right to exist. Imagine if Sarsour had made those comments about any other minority. The left would be up in arms. But Jews are the wrong sort of victim.

Similarly, Jewish Voice for Peace — an organization that calls for “an end to violence against civilians, and peace and justice for all peoples of the Middle East” — invited Rasmieh Odeh, a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and a convicted terrorist, to appear as a speaker at its national conference. The idea of Odeh, a terrorist who quite literally has blood on her hands, speaking for a Jewish organization that claims to propagate peace, flies in the face of logic.

And if that doesn’t scare you, then all you need to do is take a close look across the Atlantic to see where all this can lead. In UK, the “Corbyn-Effect” has sent extreme anti-Jewish and anti-Israel sentiments from the obscure fringes of the political spectrum into the mainstream. That virus has already reached the shores of the United States, and is metastasizing rapidly.

If you think that I’m exaggerating the problem, then just think about Ilhan Omar, a Democratic representative in Minnesota’s House of Representatives who tweeted, “Israel has hypnotized the world, may Allah awaken the people and help them see the evil doings of Israel,” which she described as “Satanic.” Ms. Omar is all but certain to win a US Congressional seat in November.

As our community searches for an answer, we should ask ourselves an important question: how many of us were more disturbed by President Trump’s silence in the wake of Charlottesville then we were at finding out that two leaders of the Women’s March — Linda Sarsour and Tamika Mallory — are hardcore antisemites who despise Israel? Yes, that’s an uncomfortable question, but it needs to be asked because our enemies on both the left and the right would like nothing more than to see us fight among ourselves. It’s called divide and conquer, and it’s happening right before our very eyes.

The US-Israel relationship works because of shared values, shared interests, and a bipartisan consensus that Israel is an important friend and ally. People may have strong feelings about Prime Minister Netanyahu or President Trump, but that should be irrelevant to their support for Israel. There is only one Israel, and we don’t have the luxury of being supportive one year and not the next. Half or more of the Israeli public voted against Netanyahu, and yet Israel still needs foreign aid, still needs Iron Dome to protect its population against rocket and missile attacks, and still needs our support at the UN to counter the world body’s relentless attacks against the Jewish state.

Judging Israel over the Israel-Palestinian conflict, or because politicians in Israel from left to right agree with the decisions Trump is making, is more about our own self-centered issues. And while the rest of the world is busy telling the worst version of the truth blended with lies, the left in this country is making Jewish kids uncomfortable in their own skin — not because of the reality in Israel — but because people here won’t call out the lies from our own politically-driven community. This trend can’t be allowed to continue. Make no mistake, this is a war for the soul of the progressive movement.

 

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BAVARIAN ANTI-SEMITISM REARS ITS UGLY HEAD                                                                           Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld

                                                Arutz Sheva, Oct. 4, 2018

A member of a Jewish community in Bavaria was told by his Muslim neighbor that he had taken his children out of a Koran school because it called for killing Jews. A Jewish parent in the same German federal state was invited by the director of a school who told her not to let her son go to the toilet alone, this because there was a child in the school who was a neo-Nazi. One Jewish person mentioned that a pharmacist had asked his father why he needed a tax advisor as “Jews do not pay tax.”

These are three examples from a recent study titled “Description of a Problem: anti-Semitism and Bavaria” published by the Research and Information Center Berlin (RIAS). Bavaria has 12.9 million inhabitants. As it is a federal state and not an independent nation, one hears internationally much less about what happens there than about a variety of European countries with substantially smaller populations including Austria, Belgium, Sweden, and Switzerland.

About 17,500 Jews are members of the 13 existing Jewish communities. Approximately half of live in or around Bavaria’s capital, Munich. This study can be considered a model for similar analysis to be undertaken elsewhere in Germany and other European countries. It is based on interviews with experts. The incidents at demonstrations during the 2014 Israeli campaign Protective Edge against Hamas are mentioned as key events in the development of anti-Semitism. The reactions of mainstream society at the time were also worrying.

Other negative key developments mentioned included the debate on prohibiting circumcision in 2012 and the influx of refugees into Germany in 2015. The study defines perpetrators of anti-Semitism as of two kinds: 1. The extreme right and 2. Groups which justify anti-Semitism on the basis of Islam.

In smaller towns and rural areas right wing extremism is dominant. Israel-related anti-Semitism was also specifically mentioned as an important phenomenon next to classic anti-Semitism. An important finding of the study is that relations between the Jewish communities and politicians as well as the police are good. Yet the dominant opinion is that complaints about anti-Semitic incidents will hardly result in successful follow up from the authorities. Interviewees mentioned that in some cases the police advised the Jewish communities not to complain because the perpetrators would not be caught.

Between 2014 and 2016, the police registered 482 criminal anti-Semitic acts. 300 of these took place in small towns and rural areas. Yet the incidents which involved violence or verbal and written targeting of individual Jews mainly occurred in the metropolitan areas of Munich and Nûremberg/Erlangen/Fürth. A 2016 study by Munich’s Ludwig-Maximilians University which focused on racism found that eighteen percent of the interviewees in Munich had significant or strong anti-Semitic attitudes. In the remainder of Bavaria it was twenty four percent. That study dealt exclusively with religious and ethnic anti-Semitism and not with anti-Israelism.

In 2017, the Technical University of Regensburg investigated attitudes of asylum seekers from Syria, Eritrea, Afghanistan and Iraq who had arrived to Bavaria in 2015 and 2016. More than half of those from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan – which are predominantly Muslims — agreed with the statement that “Jews have too much influence in the world.” Among the Eritreans, the percentage was low.

Many other interesting observations can be found in the RIAS study. Only a few can be mentioned here. Jews perceive actual anti-Semitism very differently from the non-Jewish majority which is unfamiliar with many of the hatred’s aspects.

The interviewees were asked where they encounter anti-Semitism. From the answers one can conclude that such reactions can occur anywhere, be it sport, contacts with the authorities, in conversations with acquaintances, listening in on conversations at the next table, in the public domain, at the work place, when shopping, etc. anti-Semitic experiences in schools were mentioned numerous times.

Earlier this year Bavaria appointed an anti-Semitism commissioner, Ludwig Spaenle, the former Minister of Education. He reacted to the RIAS study by saying that it proved that state and civil society have to give clear signs. A culture of close watching of anti-Semitism is needed.

In August 2018, when Spaenle was in office one hundred days, he gave an interview about his preliminary conclusions. He said that hatred of Jews was increasing. He remarked that perpetrators came not only from the right. Those from the left and Muslims often focus on Israel. Spaenle considered it urgent to establish a hot line in Bavaria where complaints about anti-Semitism can be reported.

Spaenle specifically mentioned anti-Semitism at schools as a problem. He wants to offer teachers courses on how to deal with anti-Semitic stereotypes, in particular among Muslims. He said that since 2015, many young refugees have entered Germany who grew up with prejudices towards Jews. In view of this Spaenle also wants to include techniques on combating anti-Semitism in integration courses. He remarked that when he accepted the anti-Semitism commissioner’s position he was not aware of the multitude of tasks facing him.

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UNIVERSALISM, PARTICULARISM, AND ANTI-SEMITISM

Rafael Castro

BESA, Oct. 21, 2018

Anti-Semitism is the world’s oldest hatred. This hatred has been justified on religious, economic, political and social grounds. A cogent philosophical theory of anti-Semitism is nevertheless overdue. This theory should explain the persistence and ubiquity of anti-Semitism throughout the ages.

Why have doctrines and religions as diverse as Hellenism, Christianity, Islam, Nationalism, Communism, and Intersectionality attacked Jews? A prima facie explanation is that Judaism, as a distinct ideology, invites hostility from alternative worldviews. This thesis does not explain why Judaism, which shies away from expansionism and does not seek proselytes, is viewed as a threatening doctrine. The thesis also does not account for the scarcity of anti-Semitism in belief systems as diverse as Hinduism, the Druze religion, Zoroastrianism, contemporary Conservatism, and Liberal Democracy.

In order to philosophically understand hostility towards Judaism, it is helpful to place ideologies in a spectrum ranging from absolutely universalistic to entirely particularistic. Universalistic ideologies such as Hellenism, Christianity, Islam, and Communism have historically attacked Jews and Judaism. The survival of a particularistic Jewish identity makes a mockery of their claims to ideological superiority and universal truth. On the other end of the spectrum, nationalism and nativism are particularistic ideologies that resent the cosmopolitanism that Jews embody.

Intersectionality illustrates how conventional labels like left-wing and right-wing obfuscate the ideological nature of anti-Semitism. In theory, intersectionality advocates universalistic values dear to Jews, such as social justice and equality. In practice, its exclusive focus on the interests of “oppressed minorities” makes it a particularistic movement. Advocates of intersectionality view Jewish socioeconomic achievements and Zionism as hostile to the particularistic interests they claim to represent, though Jews have invariably been an oppressed minority throughout most of their history.

On the other hand, Liberal Democracy, contemporary Conservatism, Hinduism, Zoroastrianism, and the Druze religion are doctrines that accommodate Judaism. Liberal Democracy, like Judaism, blends elements of particularism and universalism: It integrates particularistic interests into a pluralistic political system that serves universal values. Contemporary Conservatism is also philo-Semitic because it balances universalism and particularism. Conservatives treasure the industriousness of Jewish communities and respect Jewish religious distinctiveness. Hinduism, Zoroastrianism, and the Druze religion accept Judaism because they are themselves particularistic faiths.

It is important to note that particularistic faiths such as Hinduism, Zoroastrianism, and the Druze religion are amicable towards Judaism while particularistic political doctrines are not. Particularistic faiths are not bothered by different religious beliefs as they do not seek proselytes. Particularistic political doctrines, on other hand, demand collective submission to their norms and values. Because Jews subscribe to separate religious laws and beliefs, they have been viewed as a threat to social harmony since the time of the Pharaohs…

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

CIJR Wishes All Our Friends & Supporters: Shabbat Shalom!

Contents

On Topic Links

Noted UK Historian: British Jews Questioning Future in Country Due to Corbyn Antisemitism Scandals: Algemeiner, Oct. 10, 2018—The antisemitism scandals that have rocked Britain’s Labour Party since Jeremy Corbyn became its leader in 2015 have led many UK Jews to question their futures in the country, a noted London-based historian and author said in an interview published on Wednesday.

Canada Regrets Turning Away Jewish Refugees on St Louis Ship in 1939: Jeremy Sharon, Jerusalem Post, Oct. 24, 2018—Canadian ambassador to Israel Deborah Lyons announced on Wednesday that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will formally apologize next month for the decision in 1939 by then Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King refusing to grant asylum to the more than 900 Jewish refugees from Nazi Germany.

The West’s New Antisemitism Crisis: Why Right Now?: Alexander H. Joffe, BESA, Sept. 23, 2018—Western political parties are undergoing astonishing antisemitism crises. The British Labour Party and its leader Jeremy Corbyn have been exposed as deeply and irrevocably antisemitic. The US Democratic Party has now nominated nearly a half dozen candidates for Congress who are implacably opposed to Israel, and stands on the verge of a millennial-driven transformation into Labour. Accusations of Jewish disloyalty and Israeli conspiracies are common, as are threats to banish Israel from the community of nations.

Once Again, the Media Whitewashes Antisemitism Around the World: Sean Durns, Algemeiner, Oct. 3, 2018—The Washington Post’s Ishaan Tharoor has previously warned about a “a rising tide of anti-Semitism.” Yet when the journalist sat down to interview one of the world’s leading antisemites, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, such concerns seemed to dissipate. The Post’s September 28, 2018 interview of Mahathir failed to inform readers — much less confront the Malaysian politician — about his blatant antisemitism.

SUKKOT REMINDS US THAT “IMPERMANENCE CAN BE GOOD AND NECESSARY”

The Blood of Slain Israelis Stains Many Hands: Melanie Phillips, JNS, Sept. 20, 2018— It’s often claimed by Western enemies of Israel that the military actions of the Israel Defense Forces against Hamas in Gaza are disproportionate because such actions kill Arabs while Hamas attacks don’t kill Israelis.

Sukkot and Impermanence: Jeremy Rosen, Algemeiner, Sept. 21, 2018— In discussing the festival of Sukkot, the Talmud gives all the various possible explanations for the origin and purpose of a Sukkah.

The NY Times: All the Fallacies it Considers Fit to Print: Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld, Arutz Sheva, Sept. 16, 2018— More than two thousand years before the ancestors of any New York Times (NYT) editor — other than indigenous individuals — lived in America, the Jewish people already existed with their own sophisticated language, culture and religion.

New Eichmann Film Puts the Lie to Hannah Arendt’s ‘Banality of Evil’: Alan Dershowitz, Algemeiner, Sept. 20, 2018 — One of the most notorious lines — and lies — that grew out of the trial of Adolph Eichmann for his important role in the Holocaust was what Hannah Arendt called the “Banality of Evil.”

On Topic Links

Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles) Guide for the Perplexed, 2017: Yoram Ettinger, Ettinger Report, Oct. 4, 2017

Mahmoud Abbas: Fresh American Blood on His Hands: Bassam Tawil, Gatestone Institute, Sept. 17, 2018

New York Times Stumbles in a Strange Front-Page Antisemitism Story: Ira Stoll, Algemeiner, Sept. 12, 2018

UK Jews: Unity at any Price: Isi Leibler, Israel Hayom, Sept. 17, 2018

 

                              SUKKOT AND IMPERMANENCE

Jeremy Rosen

Algemeiner, Sept. 21, 2018

In discussing the festival of Sukkot, the Talmud gives all the various possible explanations for the origin and purpose of a Sukkah. Its final idea is that of impermanence. “Leave your permanent home, and live in a temporary home.” In many ways, impermanence is in our genes: Our wandering forebears. Our movable Tabernacle. Exile. Return. Impermanence really resonates with us.

We humans are indeed transient. We live our lives in constant tension between permanence and impermanence. We can be snuffed out in a flash. We are specks on the timeline of life. We are driven by a desire for life and the struggle to avoid death. There are wars, persecution, political change and upheaval, as well as illness, plagues, and natural disasters. Life is a struggle. We struggle to work, to live, to love. As a result, many of us feel insecure, depressed, and stressed.

We need certainties — to know where we stand, where we live and where we work, what country we are citizens of, what party, what religion, what sect within a religion. We yearn for permanence. Resolution. To know how the world works and the reason for everything. We need to feel we belong. We need to feel comfortable, secure, loved, wanted, admired, and respected. We pay fortunes to psychiatrists, therapists, gurus, coaches, and rabbis to give us the easy answers. And we take drugs, alcohol, and pills. Anything to help us cope and ease the pain. But there are very few certainties in life “except death and taxes” as Benjamin Franklin is supposed to have said.

Once upon a time, we knew what our positions were in hierarchies — in states, classes, in religions, in nations. We lived in a world where these defined most of us. A few people in each generation were able to move up and rise. Most stayed put. In a world of constant conquest and change, we have always been at the mercy of forces beyond our control. But now, we seem to want to control everything, everyone, every space, and every argument. We want to have everything: money, power, freedom to do as we please. Not to be challenged or offended.

We have indeed advanced dramatically, combating poverty and disease. The latest figure just published in The Wall Street Journal is that extreme poverty is now down to 10% (but that’s still too much). In Western countries, we have so much more than we used to. But that does not seem to bring much happiness or contentment. Look how angry and hypersensitive so many people have become, despite all the social welfare, safety nets, and preferences that never existed 70 years ago. Look how fractious identity politics has become, how aggressive the pressure groups. We have become neurotic when things don’t happen just the way we want them to. Yet, for all that, I’d rather live in a world of uncertainty and choice than have dictators or ideological fanatics tell me what to do.

No system is perfect or permanent. Each has aspects that are positive. The one common feature of our present world is Capisolism (my invented word) — the need for capital expansion and growth to fund the basic social needs of the poorest and the weakest. But that in itself is a variable. China has a command economy. It can do things better and faster, precisely because it can trample on individual wishes. America, on the other hand, values individual liberties and freedoms. But such liberties cause conflict, fragmentation, delays, and compromises. Both suffer from corruption.

To adapt Orwell, all states cause harm. Some states cause much more harm than others. Despite Fukuyama’s unfortunate title The End of History, there is no end. It cannot end, because humans are constantly changing. There is no final, no perfect state. Only constant fluidity and cycles. Rises and falls. Situations that seem desperate one moment become successful and peaceful the next. War turns to peace and peace to war. My liberalism is predicated on hearing other views, examining other ideas, and listening respectfully to other views.

I embrace impermanence because that has been my life. I know many who have had it far worse — far more tragic and unstable than I. But I have never had a permanent home, a permanent country, or a permanent job. I have always been wandering in the desert and finding my shade where I can. I have always been aware of people who hate me for who I am and what I am. Even personal life has had its impermanence, its ups and downs, good moments and bad ones. I do not expect perfection or resolution. I only know I have to try cope. I am fortunate to be a very happy fellow.

This impermanence, I suggest, is why the Torah gives us no ideal political or even social system, or a perfect example of how to run societies. Because there is no perfect solution. Different circumstances call for different responses. We cannot control the world or societies. All we can do is our best. The Torah constantly reminds us of the need to behave, to think, to bring spiritual ideas to mind, to enrich our lives, while at the same time reminding us that we have the freedom and choice to make crucial decisions. (Even if, as Moses predicted, many of us will get it wrong, and disappear from our people and merge with others.)

Sukkot is the festival of impermanence — throughout history, and now. How many will come and sit with us? How many will simply not be there? Sukkot reminds us that impermanence can be good. Perhaps not all the time. No one wants an impermanent marriage or impermanent children. But impermanence can be good and necessary too, if it helps us appreciate what we have and determine to preserve it…

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

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THE BLOOD OF SLAIN ISRAELIS STAINS MANY HANDS

                                       Melanie Phillips  

JNS, Sept. 20, 2018

It’s often claimed by Western enemies of Israel that the military actions of the Israel Defense Forces against Hamas in Gaza are disproportionate because such actions kill Arabs while Hamas attacks don’t kill Israelis. That’s apparently why the Western media ignore the thousands of rockets and aerial firebombs launched from Gaza to kill the residents of southern Israel, reporting instead IDF military action to stop such attacks as the wanton killing of civilians.

When an Israeli actually is murdered by an Arab in cold blood, however, this isn’t reported as wanton killing of the innocent, if he happens to be the wrong sort of Israeli. Then it’s suggested his murder is his own fault. The killing of American-born Israeli Ari Fuld on Sept. 16 has caused an outpouring of grief in Israel. The impassioned eulogies to him poured out not just because his wife, four children, parents and the rest of his family have been so cruelly bereaved.

It’s because he was a brave and outstanding fighter for Israel and the Jewish people, and admired even by his political opponents on account of his warm nature. He devoted his existence to fighting a great evil to which he has now lost his own life. The Western media, however, don’t count Ari Fuld as a victim at all because, as a resident of the Judean town of Efrat, he was a “settler.”

The murder of other Israeli residents of the disputed territories is similarly shrugged off or unreported by the Western media. For them, “settlers” are dehumanized and their lives reckoned as of no account. Thus their murder is, in effect, justified and condoned. This revolting attitude is all of a piece with the moral depravity of much of the West over the Arab war against Israel. Parroting the misleading mantra of a “two-state solution,” they deny the truths of history and law and ignore the real Arab agenda of colonial conquest and the extermination of Jewish nationhood.

For the supposed “settlers” are not in these lands illegally. They are entitled to be there. In the British Mandate for Palestine in 1922, the international community gave the Jews alone the right to settle what is now Israel, the “West Bank” and Gaza in recognition of the unique right of the Jews to recreate their ancient national homeland. The real occupiers are the Arabs. Over the centuries, they were among the waves of conquerors of the land of Israel, including Romans, Greeks, Selucids, Fatimids, Crusaders, Mongol tribes, Tartars, Mamelukes and the Ottoman Turks.

Those who today have invented for themselves a fictional “Palestinian” identity may not even have descended from the original Arab imperialists. Some may be the heirs of those who flooded into Palestine, many illegally, from neighboring Arab states on the back of the returning Jews in the early years of the last century. The historian William Ziff noted that the serial occupiers of Israel themselves brought in many other cultures. Ziff described the people of the land as a “human patch-work of Jews, Arabs, Armenians, Kalmucks, Persians, Crusaders, Tartars, Indians, Ethiopians, Egyptians, Sudanese, Turks, Mongols, Romans, Kharmazians, Greeks, pilgrims, wanderers, ne’er-do-wells and adventurers, invaders, slaves.”

To add to their historical and legal illiteracy, those shrugging aside the murder of Israeli “settlers” also turn a blind eye to the complicity in these crimes by the people they champion: the Palestinian Authority headed by Mahmoud Abbas. Through its educational materials and other media, the P.A. routinely incites hatred of Jews and the murder of Israelis, teaching its children that “all Israelis deserve to be killed and that dying while committing a terror attack is ‘the path to excellence and greatness … the great victory.’ ”

The Arab writer Bassam Tawil has specifically blamed the murder of Ari Fuld by 17-year-old Khalil Jabarin on incitement by Abbas. According to Palestinian terrorist groups, Jabarin decided to murder a Jew in response to Israeli “crimes” against the Al-Aqsa mosque and other Islamic holy sites. Two days earlier, in a speech to the PLO Executive Committee in Ramallah widely reported in Arab media, Abbas had repeated the lie that Israel was planning to establish special Jewish prayer zones inside the Al-Aqsa mosque.

No mention of any of this in Western media. Nor the fact that the P.A. immediately said it would pay the Jabarin family 1,400 shekels per month (nearly $400) for the next three years as a reward for Ari Fuld’s murder. According to the P.A.’s finance ministry, its total “pay-for-slay” budget amounts to 1.2 billion shekels ($335 million) this year and last. Until now, the West as a bloc has been complicit in Arab violence against Israelis. Over the years, it has thrown money at the “Palestinians” in the pious hope that it would help build their society and thus promote peace. In fact, it has been used to help promulgate hatred and incite mass murder.

Now, U.S. President Donald Trump has called time on this appalling charade. The United States has cut its funding to the “West Bank” and Gaza, closed the PLO office in Washington, and set in train moves to abolish the United Nations Relief and Works Agency’s definition of Palestinian refugees. By defining that status as uniquely inheritable, UNRWA has ludicrously multiplied the number of “Palestinian refugees” down through the decades…

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

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THE NY TIMES: ALL THE FALLACIES IT CONSIDERS FIT TO PRINT

                                        Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld

                                                 Arutz Sheva, Sept. 16, 2018

More than two thousand years before the ancestors of any New York Times (NYT) editor — other than indigenous individuals — lived in America, the Jewish people already existed with their own sophisticated language, culture and religion. This is still true today. Jewish peoplehood runs deep. The NYT understanding of this is, however, superficial to non-existent. Far worse, it denies self-determination to Jews to call themselves a people.

On this Jewish New Year’s Holiday (Rosh Hashanah), the NYT published a front page article entitled “Education Department Reopens Case Charging Discrimination against Jewish Students.” This article attacked a decision by Kenneth Marcus, Assistant Secretary of Education for Civil Rights, to reopen an anti-Semitism case at Rutgers University. The NYT claimed that the US Education Department embraced Judaism as an ethnicity and adopted what it called a “hotly contested definition of anti-Semitism” that included “denying the Jewish people the right to self-determination” by, for example, “claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist endeavor” and “applying double standards by requiring of Israel a behavior not expected or demanded of any other democratic nation.”

It is clear from this article that the NYT does not consider the existence of a Palestinian people contestable. Yet there was no such nationality even sixty years ago. The Arabs, in the British mandate of Palestine and after 1948 under Jordanian and Egyptian rule on the ‘West Bank’ and in Gaza respectively, saw themselves belonging either to tribes or to an international Arab nation or both.

Self-definition according to the NYT – a so-called “progressive” daily — seems okay for the Palestinians, but not for Jews. Such double standards are a typical hallmark of anti-Semitism. What the NYT calls a “hotly contested definition of anti-Semitism” is the widely accepted International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) working definition of this hate mongering. Its approval required the agreement of the thirty one Western democratic nations represented on its board. It was also specifically adapted for internal use by a number of nations and many institutions in the Western world. Furthermore, this definition can be found on the website of the US State Department.

Ira Stoll, a former Forward editor, discovered that on two other occasions the NYT had described the same definition as “internationally accepted.” The US media watch organization, CAMERA, has been exposing the NYT’s anti-Israeli bias for a long time. In 2014, I interviewed two senior analysts from CAMERA, Ricky Hollander and Gilead Ini for INN. They co-authored a major study on the unfair NYT coverage of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

Hollander and Ini said: “The New York Times is guilty of advocacy journalism. Both its editorial pages and news reporting lean heavily toward an anti-Israel perspective. This is in blunt contravention of its directive to journalists in the Ethical Journalism handbook, ‘to cover the news as impartially as possible’ and ‘tell our readers the complete, unvarnished truth as best we can learn it.’” Reacting to the article on the Rutgers case, Hollander and Ini exposed several expressions used by the NYT journalist that are largely identical to those used by virulently anti-Israeli pro-Palestinian organizations.

It would be a mistake to view the opposition of the NYT and several other media including the Los Angeles Times to the reopening of the Rutgers case as a stand-alone issue. Marcus, a lawyer, has a long record and profound knowledge concerning antisemitic discrimination. He is the founder and former president of The Louis Brandeis Center for Human Rights and the Law in Washington. This organization litigated against classic anti-Semitism and anti-Israelism on US campuses. When Marcus was confirmed in his post by the Senate in June 2018, not a single Democrat voted for him…

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]                             Contents

   

NEW EICHMANN FILM PUTS THE LIE TO HANNAH

ARENDT’S ‘BANALITY OF EVIL’

Alan Dershowitz

Algemeiner, Sept. 20, 2018

One of the most notorious lines — and lies — that grew out of the trial of Adolph Eichmann for his important role in the Holocaust was what Hannah Arendt called the “Banality of Evil.” Arendt was assigned to report on the 1961 trial of Eichmann in Jerusalem, but according to contemporaries, she rarely attended the trial itself. She came to Jerusalem having made up her mind in advance that Eichmann in particular and others involved in the evils of the Holocaust were ordinary banal functionaries. She reported on the trial with an agenda. It was not necessary for her to actually observe and listen to Eichmann because to do so would undercut her thesis. So instead she wrote a mendacious screed in which she constructed a stick-figure caricature of one of the most significant perpetrators of the Holocaust.

I use the word mendacious deliberately, because Arendt knew better. One of Hitler’s key supporters was Professor Martin Heidegger, perhaps the most influential philosopher of his day. Arendt was his student and lover. After the war she tried desperately to rehabilitate him. He was anything but banal. Nor were Göring, Goebbels, Himmler, Hitler, and the numerous doctors and lawyers who were tried at Nuremberg. Neither were the university students who began by burning Jewish books and ended by burning Jewish children. The perpetrators of the Holocaust — from those who organized it in Berlin to those who carried it out in the death camps and killing fields — included some of the most brilliant young men and women in the country. Many left university to participate in the “final solution” and then returned to highly prestigious jobs in post-war Germany.

Adolph Eichmann was anything but banal, as a perusal of the trial transcript reveals. In the film “Operation Finale,” he is played by Ben Kingsley. Although the film takes Hollywood liberties — a romance between a beautiful doctor who in reality was a man and the film’s Israeli hero — Kingsley’s fictional portrayal of Eichmann is far more realistic than the allegedly non-fiction account by Arendt.

The late Professor Telford Taylor — who was my teacher, mentor, colleague, and friend — had been the chief prosecutor at the Second Nuremburg Trials. He was invited to report on the Eichmann trial as well. He invited me along as his assistant and translator, but I had just been elected editor in chief at the Yale Law Journal and could not accept his offer — a decision I have long regretted. When he returned, he gave me his account of the trial, which varied enormously from that of Hannah Arendt. Where she saw banality, he saw calculation, manipulation, and shrewdness. These characteristics come through far more clearly in the film than in Arendt’s deeply flawed account. In the film we see a highly manipulative, shrewd judge of character who seeks to use his psychological insights to his advantage.

Nor was Arendt’s book Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil, the only effort by Germans to attribute banality and ignorance to the perpetrators of the Holocaust. In Bernhard Schlink’s award winning book The Reader, turned into a critically acclaimed film staring Kate Winslet, a woman who actively participated in the mass murder of Jews is presented as embarrassed by her illiteracy. Readers and viewers come away believing that she may have been more typical of hands-on perpetrators than the SS and Einsatzgruppen.

Deliberately distorting the history of the Holocaust — whether by denial, minimization, unfair comparisons, or false characterizations of the perpetrators — is a moral and literary sin. Arendt is a sinner who placed her ideological agenda above the truth. To be sure, there are untruths as well in “Operation Finale,” but they are different in kind rather than degree. Some of the drama and chase scenes are contrived, but what else can be expected of Hollywood. What is important is that Eichmann is presented in his multifaceted complexity, in the manner in which Shakespeare presented Iago, Lady Macbeth, and many of his other evil villains — not as banal, but as brilliantly evil.

It is essential to the memory of the victims of the Shoah, as well as to future efforts to prevent recurrences of genocide, that we not engage in ideologically driven and historically false oversimplifications such as “the banality of evil.” That mendacious and dangerous phrase should be struck from the historical vocabulary of the Holocaust and the trial of Eichmann, lest we look in the future for banality and miss the brilliance of those who would repeat Eichmann’s crimes.

CIJR Wishes All Our Friends & Supporters: Shabbat Shalom!

No Daily Briefing Will Be Published Monday or Tuesday Because of the Sukkot Holiday

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On Topic Links

Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles) Guide for the Perplexed, 2017: Yoram Ettinger, Ettinger Report, Oct. 4, 2017—The holiday of Sukkot (the Feast of Tabernacles) is dedicated to the study of the Book of Ecclesiastes, which was often quoted by the late Senator Robert Byrd, the longest serving Senator and Member of Congress in US history, who was known to quote Biblical verses.

Mahmoud Abbas: Fresh American Blood on His Hands: Bassam Tawil, Gatestone Institute, Sept. 17, 2018—In a speech before the PLO Executive Committee in Ramallah on September 15, Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas repeated the old libel that Israel was planning to establish special Jewish prayer zones inside the Al-Aqsa Mosque. Abbas claimed that Israel was seeking to copy the example of the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron, where Jews and Muslims pray in different sections.

New York Times Stumbles in a Strange Front-Page Antisemitism Story: Ira Stoll, Algemeiner, Sept. 12, 2018—A front-page New York Times news article appears under the headline “U.S. Revives Rutgers Bias Case In New Tack on Anti-Semitism.”

UK Jews: Unity at any Price: Isi Leibler, Israel Hayom, Sept. 17, 2018—The list of 50 Most Influential Jews published by The Jerusalem Post included Marie van der Zyl, the recently elected president of the Board of Deputies of British Jews. Van der Zyl is a feisty, committed Zionist and has followed in the path of her predecessor, Jonathan Arkush, in publicly confronting and condemning the anti-Semitism and vile behavior of Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn.

EUROPEAN ANTISEMITISM & ANTI-ZIONISM DRIVEN BY MUSLIM MIGRANTS AND RISE OF FAR LEFT

Skewed Focus in Study of German Anti-Semitism: Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld, Arutz Sheva, July 3, 2018 — Any realistic study on anti-Semitism in Germany should conclude that migrants from Muslim countries have more anti-Semitic attitudes and disproportionately to their size in the population commit more extreme anti-Semitic acts than native Germans.

Spain’s Anti-Israel Hypocrisy Boils Down to Antisemitism: Bradley Martin, JNS, June 29, 2018 — The Spanish state of Navarre recently voted to endorse the BDS movement against Israel, calling on the European Union to impose sanctions on Israel, while slamming the United States’ decision to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to “occupied Jerusalem.”

Claude Lanzmann, Epic Chronicler of the Holocaust, Dies at 92: Daniel Lewis, New York Times, July 5, 2018— Claude Lanzmann, the journalist and film director whose obsession with the Nazi genocide brought forth “Shoah,” a groundbreaking film that relived the annihilation of Jews through the memories of witnesses, died on Thursday in Paris. He was 92.

Sousa’s Jewish Connections: Saul Jay Singer, Jewish Press, June 28, 2018— Independence Day means patriotic displays, fireworks, barbecues, parades, carnivals, picnics, baseball games, concerts on the mall, political speeches…and John Philip Sousa.

On Topic Links

The Media Continues to Lie About Israeli Actions in Gaza: Adam Levick, Algemeiner, July 2, 2018

Stop Editorializing with Photographs: J. J. McCullough, National Review, June 27, 2018

Is There A Pattern of New York Times Bias Against Israel?: Bennett Ruda, Jewish Press, June 19, 2018

Isn’t it Ironic? Trump-Haters Have Become Even Nastier Than Him: Rex Murphy, National Post, June 29, 2018

 

SKEWED FOCUS IN STUDY OF GERMAN ANTI-SEMITISM                                                

Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld

Arutz Sheva, July 3, 2018

Any realistic study on anti-Semitism in Germany should conclude that migrants from Muslim countries have more anti-Semitic attitudes and disproportionately to their size in the population commit more extreme anti-Semitic acts than native Germans. This is in line with the situation in the world, where by far the most extreme anti-Semitic incitement — some of it genocidal — stems from parts of the Muslim world.

The reputable Allensbach Institute has published a study whose findings can only be read behind the paywall of the important daily, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ). It contains interesting data, but does not address the key issue mentioned before and is thus misleading. One of the study’s graphs shows that among supporters of the extreme right-wing party AfD, 55% are of the opinion that Jews have “too much influence in the world.” Regarding the other five parties represented in the German parliament, this figure varies between 16% and 20%.

However, right wing anti-Semitic prejudice does not explain the fact that some Jewish schoolchildren are severely harassed by Muslim children. The threats of a Muslim classmate against a Jewish girl in a second grade Berlin elementary school class is a case in point. He said that she should be killed because she does not believe in Allah. The firebombing of a synagogue in Wuppertal in 2014 was carried out by three Palestinians. The court said that this was not anti-Semitism but an act of protest against Israel. It condemned the arsonists to a fine and suspended sentences.

There are widespread stereotypes among native Germans about both Muslims and Jews. Jews are seen by 66% of the interviewed as ‘successful’, by 22% as ‘keen on money,’ by 20% as ‘politically radical’ and by 14% ‘as hungry for power.’ For Muslims the figures are 18% ‘successful in business,’ 12% ‘keen on money’, 46% ‘politically radical’ and 25% ‘hungry for power’. More important than stereotypes are criminal remarks and acts of violence. If all Jewish institutions require armed guards, this is mainly due to the threats coming out of parts of the immigrant Muslim community.

The president of the Jewish umbrella organization, Central Council of Jews in Germany, Josef Schuster, advises Jews not to wear kippot in public in major cities. The main reason for his advice is that hatred by Muslims sometimes results in violent acts. One recent case concerns an Israeli Arab, Adam Armush who didn’t believe this and purposely wore a kippah in public in Berlin’s Prenzauer Berg neighborhood. He and his companion were attacked by three youngsters, at least one of whom spoke Arabic. Armush filmed the attack for the police and for the German people and even the world “to see how terrible it is these days as a Jew to go through Berlin streets”…

The FAZ wrote that anti-Semitism has declined in Germany. This may be the case as far as attitudes and stereotypes are concerned. Far more relevant is the number of anti-Semitic acts, which last year averaged approximately four per day. The government did not appoint a Commissioner for anti-Semitism because of attitudes in the German population, but because of the large number of anti-Semitic acts.

The study also asked “is anti-Semitism and hostility toward Jews today a big problem? Or, are we dealing in your view with incidents?”  The focus of this question is radically wrong. This demand should be directed toward the Jewish population and not asked of German non-Jews who receive their information from the media. Twenty-three percent of those polled answered that anti-Semitism was a big problem. Fifty eight percent considered that anti-Semitism is a matter of incidents. When the same question was asked about the specific attack on Armush and his companion the figures changed greatly. Only 27% of the interviewed said that it was an incident and 44% said that the attack was a sign of the widespread anti-Semitism amongst Arabs in Germany.

As far as the attitude toward Jews murdered in the Holocaust is concerned: Fifty four percent of those polled considered the so called ‘stumbling stones’ as an appropriate way to remember the Jewish victims of the Nazi era while 15% were opposed.   Another question asked was whether Germany has a special responsibility toward Israel. Thirty one percent agreed with this while 41% denied it. The younger the interviewees, the less support there was for responsibility to Israel. In the 16 – 29 age group it was only 22%.

Observing this, one might mention that the demonization of Jews in Germany under the Nazi regime has been partly replaced by the demonization of Israel. A Bielefeld University study from 2014 found that 40% of Germans think that Israel conducts a war of extermination against the Palestinians. A 2015 study from the Bertelsmann Foundation found that 41% think that “Israel is acting toward the Palestinians like Nazis acted towards the Jews.”

The partially wrong focus of the Allensbach poll helps those who claim that Islamophobia is a bigger problem in Germany than anti-Semitism. The way the study is structured obfuscates a basic issue: Germans in the generation of our grandfathers murdered 6 million Jews. There are many remnants of the prejudices of that time which have largely mutated into demonic anti-Israelism. Germany is the last country which should have let massive numbers of immigrants in to the country without barring those who are anti-Semitic.

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SPAIN’S ANTI-ISRAEL HYPOCRISY BOILS DOWN TO ANTISEMITISM

Bradley Martin

JNS, June 29, 2018

The Spanish state of Navarre recently voted to endorse the BDS movement against Israel, calling on the European Union to impose sanctions on Israel, while slamming the United States’ decision to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to “occupied Jerusalem.” More than 50 Spanish cities and regions have passed motions condemning Israel. Driven by the rise of the far-left in Spain, this proliferation of anti-Israel activism is establishing the kingdom as the most anti-Israel member state in the EU, reports the Gatestone Institute.

If Spain truly cared about Israel’s “occupation,” why does the kingdom continue to preserve its own colonialist legacy? Since 1815, Spain has occupied the Portuguese town of Olivenza, despite signing a treaty agreeing to return control to Portugal. Spain has also refused to acquiesce to demands of Basque separatists seeking to create an independent homeland in northern Spain, while also maintaining control over the plazas de soberanía, and the cities of Ceuta and Melilla, despite both being claimed by Morocco as their sovereign land.

But Spain’s most flagrant violation of its neighbors’ sovereignty came last year, when it refused to respect the autonomy of Catalonia and its desire to secede from Spain. In a referendum in late 2017, an overwhelming 90% of Catalans voted in favor of independence. The Spanish government responded by arresting Catalan independence leader Jordi Sànchez; it has jailed him for the past eight months on charges of sedition. Ironically, Catalans often compare their situation to the Jewish people. As an oppressed nation, Jews survived for centuries without an independent state and fulfilled their national aspirations with the rebirth of the modern State of Israel. Catalans have yet to do so.

So why does the Spanish government pursue this hypocritical, anti-Israel foreign policy? In a poll commissioned by the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 58.4% of Spaniards believe that “the Jews were powerful because they controlled the economy and the mass media.” This number reached 62.2% among university students and 70.5% among those who expressed interest in politics. More than 60% of Spanish university students said that they did not want Jewish classmates.

Among those with antipathy towards the Jewish people, nearly 30% surveyed said that their dislike of Jews had to do with the Jewish religion, customs, and way of life; while nearly 20% of Spaniards said that they didn’t know why they disliked Jews. Note that only 17% of respondents attributed their dislike of Jews to the “conflict in the Middle East.”

During the Spanish Inquisition begun in 1492, Jews were expelled from what is today Navarre as part of a bloody campaign of anti-Jewish persecution, wiping out one of history’s most illustrious and successful Jewish communities. Today, nearly half of all Spaniards view Jews negatively, according to the Pew Research Center — making Spain possibly the most antisemitic country in Europe.

Is it any wonder that over the last decade, historical anti-Jewish tropes have made a comeback in Spain’s media? Spanish newspapers and magazines regularly contain cartoons in which Jewish symbols are linked to the killing of children. The satirical magazine El Jueves displayed a front-page caricature of former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon with a pig’s face, a Jewish skullcap, and a Nazi swastika. And Spain’s flagship newspaper El País has continuously portrayed Palestinian terrorists as innocent victims, while dehumanizing murdered Jewish children. The rampant anti-Israel sentiment in Spain is not about Middle East politics. Rather, it has everything to do with Spain’s endemic anti-Jewish bigotry. 

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CLAUDE LANZMANN, EPIC CHRONICLER OF THE HOLOCAUST, DIES AT 92

Daniel Lewis

New York Times, July 5, 2018

Claude Lanzmann, the journalist and film director whose obsession with the Nazi genocide brought forth “Shoah,” a groundbreaking film that relived the annihilation of Jews through the memories of witnesses, died on Thursday in Paris. He was 92. His publisher, Gallimard, confirmed his death, at the Saint-Antoine Hospital.

Mr. Lanzmann, a son of assimilated French Jews, took everything at full tilt. At 18, he led a Communist youth Resistance group, risking his life by smuggling small arms under the eyes of the Gestapo in Clermont-Ferrand, in central France. He became a figure of the intellectual Left, a protégé of Jean-Paul Sartre, the lover of Simone de Beauvoir for nine years, and a colleague of them both at the cultural review Les Temps Modernes, where he was editor in chief for many years.

With “Shoah” — Hebrew for catastrophe — Mr. Lanzmann upstaged everything he had done before. From its release in 1985, the film was internationally recognized as both an important historical record and an original, even beautiful, work of art — a nine-and-a-half-hour movie without a single frame of the by-then-familiar footage of the gas chambers or the living skeletons that Allied forces discovered in the Germans’ death camps.

Instead, Mr. Lanzmann tracked down and interviewed living witnesses: officers and bureaucrats who had run the camps; Jewish survivors, including veterans of the 1943 uprising in the Warsaw ghetto; and Polish townspeople in Treblinka, Chelmno and Oswiecim, where the Auschwitz camp was located. A relentless interviewer, he used whatever it took — filming surreptitiously, posing as a French historian trying “to set the record straight” — to pry astonishing stories out of his subjects.

Franz Suchomel, a former SS functionary at Treblinka who had been convicted of war crimes and spent six years in prison, told Mr. Lanzmann (in confidence, or so he thought) that it was not true, as some Jews claimed, that 18,000 a day were gassed at Treblinka. It was 12,000 to 15,000, he said, and noted with some little pride that when things were going well, the operation would take about two hours, from the arrival of a trainload of Jews until their incineration in the ovens.

In the film’s opening segment, Simon Srebnik, who as a teenager was one of only two or three Jews to survive the final mass execution at Chelmno, comes back from Israel as a middle-aged man and is given a warm homecoming by a group of Polish villagers. They are standing on the steps of a Roman Catholic church where Jews had been held before being hauled away. “In the middle of this company of well-wishers,” Vincent Canby wrote in his review of the film in The New York Times, “Mr. Srebnik looks like someone who’s won a Lotto prize he doesn’t want, and doesn’t comprehend.”

“Shoah” was never intended as a straightforward documentary or oral history, but rather what Mr. Lanzmann called “a fiction of the real.” It was consciously artful, he said, so as to “make the unbearable bearable.” Thus, the film sometimes retraces scenes from the past with original participants as “actors.” It frequently breaks away from the face of a witness to scan a peaceful Polish countryside, where the horrors being spoken of once took place. Much of the impact of these devices was realized in the five years Mr. Lanzmann spent editing his footage. Before that, he had spent seven years shooting, partly because he was four years into the project when, on his first visit to Treblinka, he encountered things “that forced me to start again from scratch.”

In his autobiography, “The Patagonian Hare,” made available in English translation in 2012, Mr. Lanzmann wrote: “I had not wanted to come to Poland, I arrived full of arrogance, and convinced I was coming only to confirm that I had not needed to come.” But at the Treblinka train station, “the shift from myth to reality took place in a blinding flash, the encounter between a name and a place wiped out everything I had learned.” That very day he began working in a sustained fever of urgency, questioning townspeople about their memories of the death-camp years and gathering minute details about the arrival and unloading of boxcars crammed with doomed souls and the ever-present stench of charred flesh and of corpses rotting in mass graves. He realized at last that the true subject of his film: “Death itself.”

Mr. Lanzmann was a man of strong convictions. He rejected the word “Holocaust” — literally, “burnt offering” — as a description of the genocide. He railed against its “commodification” in films like “Schindler’s List.” He believed that Polish anti-Semitism was an “essential condition” of the genocide; indeed, the lack of anything in “Shoah” that would cast Poles in a better light led the Warsaw government to demand that the film be banned after its premiere in Paris…

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.]

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SOUSA’S JEWISH CONNECTIONS

Saul Jay Singer

Jewish Press, June 28, 2018

Independence Day means patriotic displays, fireworks, barbecues, parades, carnivals, picnics, baseball games, concerts on the mall, political speeches…and John Philip Sousa. Sousa (1854-1932), an American composer and conductor famous particularly for his American military and patriotic marches, is known as “The March King” because of his mastery of the march arrangement. His most famous pieces include “Stars and Stripes Forever” (1896), the official U.S. National March; “The Washington Post” (1889); “El Capitan” (1896); and “Semper Fidelis” (1888), the official march of the U.S. Marine Corps.

Appointed leader of the United States Marine Band in 1880, he molded the band into the finest military band in the world before resigning in 1892 to form his own civilian band, which soon became one of the finest symphony orchestras of the day and not merely a “marching band.” In addition to hundreds of marches, Sousa also wrote 15 operettas, and various suites, humoresques, fantasies, descriptive pieces, and dances. His band made more than 15,000 appearances – though in only eight of them is the band known to have actually marched while playing – and became the first large American ensemble to complete a world tour.

Sousa had a particularly interesting Jewish connection through his lyric soprano soloist diva, Estelle Liebling (1880-1970). A member of a renowned musical Jewish family, Liebling toured with Sousa and performed in over 1,600 concerts, never once missing a performance. A modern-day Cal Ripken, critics attributed her “consecutive games streak” to her inner strength, determination, dedication to her craft, and incredible vocal technique, and she was widely praised for the astonishing range, clarity, and purity of her voice.

Sousa’s respect and affection for Liebling may explain why, for his time, the fiercely patriotic bandleader had a rather enlightened view of Jewish immigrants to the United States: “We want no Jewish Ghettos. We want the comer to our shores to imbibe Americanism and only Americanism. The quicker we make an American out of him the better for him and for ourselves.”

It also may explain why religious intolerance was a particular abomination to him. He once called a musician into his office and asked if he had referred to another member of the band as “a dirty Jew” and, when the man confirmed that he had, Sousa promptly discharged him and ordered him to never again seek a position in his employ.

After successful operatic appearances across Europe, Liebling’s debut performance at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York in 1902 came with only a few hours’ notice, when she was asked to substitute for a singer who had suddenly taken ill. She went on to become not only a beloved performer, but also one of the most influential American teachers of singing technique. She taught and coached vocalists for over 50 years, and her students included some 80 Metropolitan Opera singers including, notably, Beverly Sills.

Another fascinating Jewish connection of Sousa’s was First Lieutenant George Friedlander, a New York Jew who, while serving as an artillery officer with the 306th Field Artillery, 6th Battalion, 17th Regiment in World War I, prompted the official “Army Song”:

Over hill, over dale, we will hit the dusty trail,

as the caissons go rolling along.

Up and down, in and out, countermarch and right about,

and our caissons go rolling along.

For it’s hi-hi-hee in the Field Artillery,

shout out the number loud and strong.

Till our final ride, it will always be our pride,

to keep those caissons a rolling along.

In 1917, Sousa arranged a lunch with Secretary of the Navy Josephus Daniels to complain about the poor quality of the instruments supplied to members of the military band. Daniels, known for his philo-Semitism, invited Friedlander to attend the luncheon. During the meal, Friedlander asked Sousa to create a march for the Field Artillery Corps. Sousa took the “Caisson Song” (“caissons” are ammunition containers), which had been written by Edmund L. Gruber in 1907, changed the key, harmony, and rhythm, and renamed it “U.S. Field Artillery.” The current official version, “The Army Goes Rolling Along,” which was adopted in 1956, is essentially the original Sousa version inspired by Friedlander…

[To Read the Full Article Click the Following Link—Ed.] 

CIJR Wishes All Our Friends & Supporters: Shabbat Shalom!

Contents

On Topic Links

The Media Continues to Lie About Israeli Actions in Gaza: Adam Levick, Algemeiner, July 2, 2018—A June 28 article at The Times of London once again demonstrates the media’s frequent failure to challenge incendiary and unsubstantiated accusations against Israel by Palestinians or pro-Palestinian campaigners.

Stop Editorializing with Photographs: J. J. McCullough, National Review, June 27, 2018—Long before the current trade spat between Justin Trudeau and President Trump, a striking photograph seemed to foreshadow a troubled relationship.

Is There A Pattern of New York Times Bias Against Israel?: Bennett Ruda, Jewish Press, June 19, 2018—Last week, The Algemeiner held a discussion about The New York Times and its coverage of both Israel and of Jews in general.

Isn’t it Ironic? Trump-Haters Have Become Even Nastier Than Him: Rex Murphy, National Post, June 29, 2018—It may now join the propositions of Euclid, as impregnable to rebuttal, that Donald Trump or any news that alludes to him, unhinges the minds of those who oppose him.