Tag: Hungary

LEFTIST ANTISEMITISM PRIMARILY EXPRESSED THROUGH ANTI-ZIONISM

Why Do the Hungarians and Netanyahu Want Each Other?: Herb Keinon, Jerusalem Post, July 18, 2017— Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu landed in Budapest on Monday, marking

 the first time a sitting Israeli prime minister has visited Hungary since the country emerged from Communist rule in 1989.

How the Documentary “Chosen and Excluded – The Hate for Jews in Europe” Was Chosen to be Excluded From the German-French Network: Abraham Cooper and Manfred Gerstenfeld, Huffington Post, June 19, 2017— The refusal of the German-French public TV station Arte to broadcast a movie about European anti-Semitism has sparked outrage on both sides of the Atlantic.

Europe Remains Blind Because it Doesn’t Want to See: Melanie Phillips, Jerusalem Post, July 20, 2017— In Budapest this week, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had an unintentionally revealing moment…

After 500 Years, an Italian Jewish Rebirth: Michael Ledeen, Wall Street Journal, July 13, 2017— Late last month a Jewish community was established here in southern Italy…

 

On Topic Links

 

7 Reasons Why Macron’s Speech About the Holocaust in France Was Groundbreaking: Cnaan Liphshiz, JTA, July 17, 2017

On Bombing Anniversary, Iran Still Engaged in Illicit Activity: Matthew Levitt, The Hill, July 19, 2017

Argentina-Israel Relations: Nazi Trials and Terrorist Tribulations: Avraham Spraragen, JCPA, July 20, 2017

A Terrorist’s Big Payday, Courtesy of Trudeau: Peter Kent, Wall Street Journal, July 16, 2017

         

WHY DO THE HUNGARIANS AND NETANYAHU WANT EACH OTHER?                                                

Herb Keinon

           Jerusalem Post, July 18, 2017

 

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu landed in Budapest on Monday, marking the first time a sitting Israeli prime minister has visited Hungary since the country emerged from Communist rule in 1989. However, the run-up to the visit – Netanyahu will meet with Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban, as well as take part in a summit of the four-country Visegrad group made up of Hungary, Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovakia – has been anything but smooth.

 

First, there is the fact that Jobbik, a far-right party with a history of antisemitism, is the third-largest party in the country. Second is the government’s anti-immigrant billboard campaign, which has antisemitic overtones because it is using the image of George Soros, the Hungarian-born Jewish financier who is a harsh critic of Orban’s government. Soros is also a strident critic of Israel who supports a number of NGOs with radical left-wing agendas, such as Breaking the Silence, B’Tselem, Yesh Din and al-Haq. And third are Orban’s comments from a few weeks ago in which he praised Miklos Horthy, the Hungarian leader during World War II when 600,000 of the country’s 800,000 Jews were murdered in the Holocaust.

 

Those three factors have led to criticism of Netanyahu in recent days from some circles accusing him of playing footsie with a leader many feel has authoritarian leanings and who – in the run-up to elections next spring in which Jobbik is his main rival – is trying to burnish his right-wing credentials by rewriting history and praising people such as Horthy.

 

All this raises two questions. If Orban is indeed playing to latent (and often not so latent) strains of Hungarian antisemitism – antisemitism of the classical the-Jews-killed- Jesus-and-run-the-world variety – why did he invite Netanyahu? And the other question is why would Netanyahu want to go? Regarding Orban’s invitation, it is worth noting that when he visited Israel in the mid-2000s as head of the opposition, Netanyahu was one of the few politicians who paid attention to him, and the two struck up a good relationship.

 

When Orban then became prime minister in 2010, he began pushing for Netanyahu to visit. One reason he wanted the visit was the election put him at odds with the European Union, which was concerned about what it saw as his authoritarian and illiberal leanings, and a visit by Netanyahu would give him a degree of legitimacy and respect. The visit never materialized.

 

Fast-forward to 2017, and two new elements have emerged making such a visit – from Orban’s perspective – even potentially more beneficial now. The first is that the country is going to elections in 2018, and still remains relatively isolated in the EU. World leaders are not exactly beating a path to Orban’s door, so photo opportunities of a visit by Netanyahu – a recognized world figure in much of the world – can help Orban domestically by showing that it is not only the leaders of Kazakhstan and Russia who come calling.

 

The other new element is the election of US President Donald Trump. Orban was one of the first world leaders to applaud Trump when he won the Republican nomination last summer, and he is keen on improving ties with a Washington that, under Barack Obama, kept him at arm’s length because of his brand of illiberal democracy. In trying to develop close ties with Trump, the old adage that the road to Washington leads through Jerusalem resonates in Budapest as it does in some other capitals around the world. Netanyahu’s good relationship with Trump is something Orban apparently would like to leverage.

 

Moreover, this trip is not only a bilateral one, and Netanyahu will also be meeting with the leaders of the Czech Republic, Poland and Slovakia, the other three members of the Visegrad group. The importance of this group inside the EU should not be exaggerated, and participation by Netanyahu will give it a degree of media attention that will temporarily enhance its stature, something that is also in Orban’s interests.

 

But why would Netanyahu want to make the trip? First of all, because the country has a relatively large Jewish community, estimated at between 100,000 and 120,000, making it – after France and Britain – the third-largest Jewish community in the EU. Visits by the Israeli prime minister are important gestures of encouragement to the local Jewish community.

 

Second, because Hungary is on the side of those countries inside the EU who are favorably disposed toward Israel. If, on the one side, there are hypercritical states like Ireland, Sweden, Spain, Portugal and even France, on the other side are countries like Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, the Czech Republic and Greece. Hungary is more aligned with the latter group, and goes to bat for Israel inside the EU from time to time. For instance, in 2015 Hungary’s foreign minister came to Israel and unequivocally came out against the EU’s policy of labeling goods from the settlements.

 

While Hungary has not broken from the consensus EU positions on Israel-related votes in international forums, when there is a vote in the UN or another international body on Israel, and the EU countries split, Hungary is generally on the side of those who either abstain or vote for Israel, rather than voting against. Prime-ministerial trips such as these are also meant to reinforce those patterns and tendencies.

                                                                       

 

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HOW THE DOCUMENTARY “CHOSEN AND EXCLUDED – THE HATE FOR JEWS IN EUROPE” WAS CHOSEN TO BE EXCLUDED FROM THE GERMAN-FRENCH NETWORK

Abraham Cooper and Manfred Gerstenfeld

Huffington Post, June 19, 2017

 

The refusal of the German-French public TV station Arte to broadcast a movie about European anti-Semitism has sparked outrage on both sides of the Atlantic. The Simon Wiesenthal Center announced it would show the film at its Museum of Tolerance in Los Angeles and urged the European Parliament to screen the documentary.

 

Watching the first two minutes of “Chosen and Excluded – The Hate for Jews in Europe“ explain the refusal to broadcast. In the film, Mahmoud Abbas, President of the Palestinian Authority is addressing the European Parliament. He claims that all terrorism, violence and extremism in the world will stop when peace exists between the Palestinians and Israel. Abbas also states that Israeli rabbis have asked the Israeli government to poison Palestinian waters. A few days later Abbas said that he was misinformed.

 

Abbas’ first claim is lunacy. The second is a modern mutation of the medieval false anti-Semitic accusation of Jews ‘poisoning the well’. Nevertheless, many European parliamentarians rose in a standing ovation for the Palestinian Authority President. Martin Schulz, then the Chairman of the European Parliament and presently the Socialist candidate aiming to become German Prime Minister in upcoming September 2017 elections, tweeted that Abbas speech was ‘inspiring’ and did not distance himself from its anti-Semitism.

 

This movie was created by German producers Joachim Schröder and Sophie Hafner. It was commissioned by German public TV broadcaster WDR on behalf of Arte. After showing Abbas’ anti-Semitic statement and the European parliamentarians’ appreciation for him, the remaining hour and a half of the documentary exposes many other issues relating to contemporary anti-Semitism. It undermines much of the European self- image and its Middle East narrative.

 

While in 2017 it is politically correct to expose right wing European anti-Semitism, emphasizing European left wing anti-Semitism is often frowned upon. Negative mention of the BDS campaign is problematic in various European circles. Demonstrating that anti-Israelism is a modern version of anti-Semitism is not particularly welcome either. Nor is mentioning Palestinian incitement, corruption and abuse of Western aid money…

 

It is one thing to show a single anti-Semitic murder resulting from extreme Islamist ideology. But the film recounts a number of extreme anti-Semitic crimes committed by Muslims. These include, the 2006 murder of Ilan Halimi, the 2012 Toulouse Jewish school killings, the 2015 Paris hypermarket murders and those in 2014 at the Brussels Jewish museum. The movie further shows the pogrom-like Muslim attacks in 2014 against synagogues in Paris and Sarcelles as well as the 2014 Islam-inspired robbery and rape in another Paris suburb, Creteil.

 

Many European politicians and media outlets have attempted for more than a decade to dilute or hide mention of extreme Muslim anti-Semitism. The suppression of these facts takes place even as it is the most violent expression of the ancient Jew-hatred in contemporary Europe. During the French socialist Jospin government at the beginning of this century, the huge increase of anti-Semitic incidents – mainly caused by Muslims – was to a large extent hidden by the police and the Ministry of Interior under the general heading “hooliganism.”

 

The censored movie was initially made available thanks to a – probably illegal — 24 hour long showing on the internet by the German daily, Bild. The movie was for a time also viewed on You Tube. It is remarkable that it has taken more than fifteen years before a major documentary on European anti-Semitism was produced by a European broadcaster. Due to the Arte censorship the documentary has generated far more publicity than had the broadcasters simply screened it.

 

The Arte management uses two arguments to explain its suppression of the documentary. Their first argument was that the movie was not professional enough. The German public broadcaster ARD apparently does not share this opinion as it is willing to broadcast the documentary. The second claim was that the documentary did not cover a number of countries that the broadcaster had agreed on with the filmmakers. Arte also claimed that the documentary gave too much attention to the Middle East…

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

 

 

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EUROPE REMAINS BLIND BECAUSE IT DOESN’T WANT TO SEE

Melanie Phillips            

Jerusalem Post, July 20, 2017

 

 

In Budapest this week, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had an unintentionally revealing moment. On an open microphone, he was overheard condemning as “crazy” the EU’s insistence on resolving the Israel-Palestinian conflict as a precondition for closer trade ties. European links with Israel, he said, would determine whether the EU would “live and thrive or shrivel and disappear.” The situation is surely even broader and starker than that. European leaders don’t realize their fate is wrapped up not only with Israel but with Judaism itself.

 

They don’t grasp that prejudice against the Jews is a major driver of Islamist attacks not just against Israel but also against the West. And they don’t understand how their own orthodoxies are aiding that malign process. Last April Sarah Halimi, a 67-year-old French Jewish woman, was murdered by her 27-year-old neighbor, Malian immigrant Kobili Traore, who beat and tortured her before throwing her alive out of the third floor window of her Paris apartment. During the attack he shouted “Allahu akbar” and “you sheitan!” (devil). He had previously taunted her repeatedly with anti-Jewish remarks. The police, who had failed to respond to the pleas by Halimi’s family to do something about Traore because they feared being accused of anti-Muslim prejudice, have refused to acknowledge this was an anti-Jewish crime.

 

In recent years, French Jews have been repeatedly attacked by Muslim assailants motivated by religiously based hatred of Jews. France has persistently ignored the significance of this. When Islamists murdered French Jews in the Hyper Cacher kosher supermarket in Paris in 2015, the Jewish community observed bitterly that this atrocity was only properly acknowledged because it happened two days after the slaughter at Charlie Hebdo. What the Hyper Cacher atrocity actually showed, along with other attacks on French Jewish targets around the same time, was what Europeans have denied for so long: that Muslims kill Jews because they are Jews.

 

In 2003 Sébastien Selam was killed in Paris by Adel Amastaïbou who screamed: “I’ll go to heaven, I killed my Jew!” In 2014 in Lyon a man armed with a hammer and an iron stick charged at his neighbor, a woman and her child, yelling “Dirty Jew, go back to your country!” The same month a young man was beaten up in Paris by two men crying: “Dirty Jew, we don’t like Jews here, this is no Israel, this is Palestine!” In Britain, there is an ongoing furor over antisemitism in the Labour Party. This is being blamed on the party’s far-left leader, Jeremy Corbyn. But anti-Jewish attitudes, expressed principally through attacks on Israel, are now the default position throughout the Left.

 

The usual alibi that such views are anti-Israel but not anti-Jew doesn’t wash. Although those expressing them may have no personal animosity against Jews, their Israel-bashing has precisely the same characteristics as Jew-baiting: singling out Jews or the Jewish state alone for double standards, demonization and systematic lying used against no other people.

 

During Netanyahu’s visit to Paris last Sunday, the French president Emmanuel Macron helpfully observed that anti-Zionism was a “new type of antisemitism.” He also issued a welcome call for “total clarity” on the Halimi murder and admitted: “We were silent because we did not want to see.” Alas, Macron himself doesn’t want to see what needs to be seen. He has persistently failed to acknowledge the real cause of Islamist terrorism, blaming it on things like joblessness, grievances or – most fatuously – global warming.

 

Islamist terrorism is caused by a fanatical interpretation of Islam. Intrinsic to that is hatred and fear of the Jews deriving from Islamic sacred texts. Islamists further believe that modernity has to be stopped, the Jews are behind modernity and all other evil and so the Jews have to be eradicated. The Islamists’ key insight is that progressive views have hollowed out Western societies, particularly in Europe, so that they no longer know what values they need to defend against the Islamic jihad.

 

What secularists fail to grasp is that the values they most prize, such as the power of reason or belief in human rights, were created by Judaism and expressed in the West through Christianity. Human rights rest on the belief that all are created equal in the image of God. The power of reason rests on the revolutionary concept in the book of Genesis that there is an intelligible universe. Secular ideologies, however, are positively anti-Judaism.

 

Moral relativism denies the moral codes of Mosaic law. Deep green environmentalism repudiates the belief embodied in the creation that mankind is superior to the natural world. Scientific materialism dethrones God and puts man in his place. Judaism is an obstacle both to the unconstrained individualism of Western libertines and also to the Islamist attack on reason, equality and freedom. Small wonder Western progressives make common cause with Islamists against the Jewish people.

 

Macron is a universalist who doesn’t believe in defending Western national identity. Nor does he believe in France. He said last February: “French culture does not exist; there is a culture in France and it is diverse…French art? I never met it!” Anyone who believes Macron will defend the Jewish people, the free world or France itself is in for a rude awakening. As are the rest of Europe and the West, while they continue to misjudge the central importance of Israel and the Jewish people to their battle to survive.

 

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AFTER 500 YEARS, AN ITALIAN JEWISH REBIRTH                                                           

Michael Ledeen                                                                                        

Wall Street Journal, July 13, 2017

 

Late last month a Jewish community was established here in southern Italy—the first such founding since King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella ordered the expulsion or forced conversion of the Jews more than 500 years ago. On the same day the community was revived, the Catania city government gave the top floor of a palace overlooking the Mediterranean Sea to the International Institute for Jewish Culture. The small community is now looking for a rabbi and raising money to furnish the space, which will be used as a synagogue.

 

While anti-Semitism is on the upswing in many parts of Europe, Judaism and Jews are experiencing a renaissance in Italy. The country is most strongly associated with the Roman Catholic Church, but Jews have been here for thousands of years. Given Italy’s place as a political laboratory in the Western world, its role in the revival of Judaism—particularly in the south—is worth watching.

 

In 2015 the bishop of Palermo gave a Jewish group a local church to convert into a synagogue. The same year Catholic authorities in Trani, on the mainland, did the same. Yet the situation in Catania is unique, as it fully revives a Jewish community abolished in 1492. This community was only one of the 52 disbanded at the time, and other communities in Italy are in the process of being revived. Baruch Triolo, a Catanian attorney who converted to Judaism while living in Miami, is leading the revival project. He has received support from numerous local and regional governments, as well as the island’s philo-Semitic Masonic groups.

 

State support for the Jews extends beyond helping to revive communities. The federal government helped finance the Italian translation of the first volume of the Talmud. The new volume was first presented at the country’s most prestigious cultural institution, the Accademia dei Lincei, on the banks of the Tiber river in Rome. The first two runs of the translation sold out almost immediately, and the buyers are overwhelmingly non-Jewish, according to the publisher.

 

Perhaps the clearest indicator of the strength and depth of Jewish popularity comes at mealtime. Jewish food, including kosher food, is suddenly chic. Restaurants in Rome’s Jewish ghetto are regularly packed. You can even get fried artichokes made “Jewish style” at takeout stands. Kosher food and wine are now regularly featured at national food fairs and can be purchased at upscale stores throughout the country. “Regular people are selling and buying Jewish food precisely because it’s Jewish,” says the Italian journalist Carla Reschia. “Food is an example, but you can see it also in literature: In a country where Jews number less than 0.1%, Jewish authors are disproportionately popular.”

 

Italian historians, archaeologists and anthropologists are hard at work to document the presence of Jews from ancient times into the early modern period. There is no lack of evidence, some of which dates back to the first century, following the Roman conquest of ancient Israel. Yet many museums are not aware of the considerable quantity of evidence they have in their archives and deposits. In recent years, Sicilian cities have begun to publish catalogs of this material, and I recently attended a public meeting in southeastern Sicily that featured professors and government officials intent on creating a tourist guide to Jewish Sicily, from Taormina to Siracusa and Noto.

 

It is hard to overstate the enthusiasm for the Jewish revival. Cooperative ventures between Italian and Israeli universities are under way. These efforts should produce new experts and new historical finds in the coming years. Such activities will be reinforced as other communities emulate the Catania model and new centers of Jewish life are created. There is a lot of work to be done before the Italian Jewish revival is fully realized. Anti-Semites are particularly active in northern cities like Milan and Turin. The country is also a landing point for many Islamic immigrants, many of whom are openly anti-Semitic. Possible descendants of the old communities will want to formalize their faith by converting, and there is a shortage of rabbis qualified to do that. But in an era when European Jews are under siege, that’s not a bad problem to have.

 

CIJR Wishes All Our Friends & Supporters: Shabbat Shalom!

 

 

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On Topic Links

 

7 Reasons Why Macron’s Speech About the Holocaust in France Was Groundbreaking: Cnaan Liphshiz, JTA, July 17, 2017—It wasn’t the first time that a French president acknowledged his nation’s Holocaust-era guilt, but Emmanuel Macron’s speech Sunday was nonetheless groundbreaking in format, content and style. Delivered during a ceremony at the Vel d’Hiv Holocaust memorial monument exactly 75 years after French police officers rounded up 13,152 Jews there for deportation to Nazi death camps, the 35-minute address was Macron’s first about the Holocaust since the centrist won the presidency in May.

On Bombing Anniversary, Iran Still Engaged in Illicit Activity: Matthew Levitt, The Hill, July 19, 2017—This week marks the 23rd anniversary of the 1994 bombing of the Israeli-Argentine Mutual Association (AMIA) in Buenos Aires that killed 85 people and wounded an additional 300. Iran has marked the occasion by insulting the victims of the attack with a hollow offer of assistance, even as it shelters the senior Iranians indicted for the crime.

Argentina-Israel Relations: Nazi Trials and Terrorist Tribulations: Avraham Spraragen, JCPA, July 20, 2017—Carlos Menem, the first Argentinian president to make a diplomatic visit to Israel, optimistically characterized his country’s relationship with the Jewish State in the following letter to President Ezer Weizman in 1999…

A Terrorist’s Big Payday, Courtesy of Trudeau: Peter Kent, Wall Street Journal, July 16, 2017—Omar Khadr pulled the pin from a grenade and tossed it at Sgt. First Class…   

 

 

 

WEST INDIFFERENT TO ISLAMIST PERSECUTION OF EGYPT’S CHRISTIANS

Christians Fear for Their Lives in the Middle East: Micah Halpern, Jerusalem Post, Feb. 27, 2017— Christians fear for their lives in certain parts of the Middle East. Islamic State (ISIS) has called them its primary target – its “favorite prey.”

A New Genocide for Egypt’s Christians?: Raymond Ibrahim, Frontpage, Mar. 2, 2017— Yet another murderous wave is taking Egypt’s Coptic Christian minority by storm, leading to yet another exodus from their homes. 

Hungary’s Ugly State-Sponsored Holocaust Revisionism: James Kirchick, Tablet, Mar. 13, 2017 — A stone’s throw from Budapest’s majestic Gothic revival parliament building, Freedom Square teems with monuments attesting to Hungary’s turbulent 20th century.

The Holocaust’s Great Escape: Matthew Shaer, Smithsonian, Mar. 2017— Shortly after dawn one January day in 1944, a German military truck departed the center of Vilnius, in what is today Lithuania, and rattled southwest toward the fog-laced towns that ringed the city.

               

On Topic Links

 

Christian Groups Launch TV Series Defending Israel: Benjamin Glatt, Jerusalem Post, Mar. 7, 2017

Persecuted Christians Suffer “Worst Year Yet,” Mostly Under Islam: Raymond Ibrahim, Frontpage, Mar. 30, 2017

In Rediscovered Telegram, Himmler Offers Jerusalem’s Mufti Help Against ‘Jewish Intruders’: Sue Surkes, Times of Israel, Mar. 30, 2017

‘The Zookeeper’s Wife’ Review: Maladaptation of the Species: Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal, Mar. 30, 2017

 

 

CHRISTIANS FEAR FOR THEIR LIVES IN THE MIDDLE EAST                                                 

Micah Halpern

Jerusalem Post, Feb. 27, 2017

 

Christians fear for their lives in certain parts of the Middle East. Islamic State (ISIS) has called them its primary target – its “favorite prey.” And still, the plight and the tragedy of Middle East Christians go relatively unnoticed by the larger Christian and Western world.

The Christian community in Egypt numbers about nine million. It is the largest Christian community in the Middle East – and ISIS has hit it hard. Most Christians in Egypt are Copts, they have their own pope and their own tradition and they do not genuflect to Rome. They date themselves back to St. Mark in Alexandria during the period of Roman Emperor Claudius at about the year 42 CE, just after the death of Jesus. Copts call themselves “Christians of Egypt.” They are arguably the oldest Christian community in the world.

 

In December about 30 Egyptian Copts, mostly women and children, were massacred and many more were wounded, in their church, by ISIS. Other than AP and Reuters only a handful of media in the world covered the terrorist attacks by running the wire releases. Even fewer made more than casual mention of the atrocities against and persecution of Christians in the Middle East.

The events befalling the Christian community in Egypt are not simply newsworthy, they are an essential tool with which to elucidate the fragile status of a minority community in the Middle East – Christians among Muslims. These persecutions are important tools in measuring the activities of Arab governments and their responses to the challenge. Jews standing up and calling attention to the plight of Christians living under Muslim regime and being murdered by ISIS while worldwide Christian leadership remains silent smacks of only a slight touch of irony.

We need to prevent the oppression of minorities, and we know the importance of defending those who cannot defend themselves. And while there are those in the Arabic world who say that Jews are exaggerating these atrocities only to make these Muslim regimes look bad, I say poppycock. When extremist groups like ISIS are freely murdering it becomes big news in Israel. The most obvious reason is because Israel may be next, because Israel – as the world should know – is on the front line.

Over the past few weeks ISIS has produced and posted a “hit list” of Christians it intends to murder. So far ISIS has murdered seven people; one was beheaded, another was burned alive. A father and son, members of the Hana family, were dumped on the side of the road after ISIS shot the father dead and burned his son alive. The symbolism should not be lost. In Islam the symbol of dumping a dead body on the side of the road outside a town, in this case the town was al-Arish, is very telling. It means the victims are seen by the murderers an unfit for human burial and instead worthy only of being thrown to the dogs to be mauled and eaten. The victims are seen by the murderers as subhuman. And that is the way ISIS views all Christians, but most of all, the Christians of the Middle East.

Many Christians are fleeing the Sinai where these attacks have taken place. They have seen the writing on the wall and heard the promise of future threats. Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Sisi condemned the recent attacks, much in the same way that he condemned the December massacre. But that’s all he’s done – little else has happened and the Christians rightfully fear for their lives. Despite the AP and Reuters coverage of the persecutions the massacres of Christians in the Middle East has barely made a blip on the radar of the Western news media.

Sisi is reacting much the way Western media is reacting. The Copts are not a part of the mainstream; they don’t belong. Their tradition, their practice looks nothing like Western Christianity. There are no significant populations and affiliations outside of Egypt to take up the battle cry and defend them. Libya and Sudan have small Coptic communities, but they’re not going to make waves and risk their relative safety to help out in Egypt. Western Catholic and Protestant groups are not connected to these Christians who are part of the Eastern Church, sometimes referred to as the National Churches. That leaves Israel and Jews around the world.

Defense of Egypt’s Christian community is not purely selfless. We have, as they say, skin in the game. We must call attention to the plight of the Christians under ISIS and other oppressors in order to make certain that moderate regimes in the region remain stable. Egypt must protect the Christians and destroy ISIS because otherwise ISIS will destabilize the entire country and the region. ISIS is recruiting members to help oppress the Christians. Protecting Christians will protect the region. Ultimately, it will protect Israel, too.

                                                                           

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A NEW GENOCIDE FOR EGYPT’S CHRISTIANS? 

Raymond Ibrahim

                                                            Frontpage, Mar. 2, 2017

 

Yet another murderous wave is taking Egypt’s Coptic Christian minority by storm, leading to yet another exodus from their homes. Last week in al-Arish, Sinai, Islamic State affiliates killed a 65-year-old Christian man by shooting him in the head; they then abducted and tortured his 45-year-old son, before burning him alive and dumping his charred remains near a schoolyard. Perhaps because of its sensationalist nature—burning a human alive—this story was reported by some Western media.  Yet the atrocities hardly begin or end there.  Below is a list of Christians murdered in al-Arish in recent days and weeks:

January 30:  A 35-year-old Christian was in his small shop working with his wife and young son when three masked men walked in, opened fire on him, instantly killing the Copt.  The murderers then sat around his table, eating chips and drinking soda, while the body lay in a pool of blood before the terrified wife and child.

 

February 13: A 57-year-old Christian laborer was shot and killed as he tried to fight off masked men trying to kidnap his young son from off a crowded street in broad daylight.   After murdering the father, they seized his young son and took him to an unknown location (where, per precedent, he is likely being tortured, possibly already killed, if a hefty ransom was not already paid). February 16: A 45-year-old Christian schoolteacher was moonlighting at his shoe shop with his wife, when masked men walked in the crowded shop and shot him dead. February 17:  A 40-year-old medical doctor was killed by masked men who, after forcing him to stop his car, opened fire on and killed him.  He too leaves a widow and two children.

 

It is likely that more Christians have been slain recently in Sinai; because they are being killed in quick succession, it is not clear if ongoing reports are documenting the same or new incidences.   For instance, a recent February 24 report says “On Thursday [February 23], a [Christian] plumber in the city was shot dead in front of his wife and children at their home….  A day earlier [February 22], gunmen killed another [Christian] man before his pregnant wife, then calmly drank a bottle of Pepsi before taking off, witnesses told aid workers in Ismailia.”  Is the February 22 Pepsi drinking incident the same as the one reported above as occurring on January 30, or a different one?

 

This recent uptick in Christian persecution is believed to be in response to a video earlier released by the Islamic State in Sinai.  In it, masked militants promise more attacks on the “worshipers of the cross,” a reference to the Copts of Egypt, whom they also referred to as their “favorite prey” and the “infidels who are empowering the West against Muslim nations.”

As a result of the recent slayings and threats of more to come, at least 300 Christians living in al-Arish have fled their homes, with nothing but their clothes on their backs and their children in their hands.  Most have congregated in a Coptic church compound in neighboring Ismailia by the Suez Canal.  (Note: Donations that go directly to the dislocated Christians of al-Arish can be made here).

 

In a video of these destitute Copts, one man can be heard saying “They are burning us alive! They seek to exterminate Christians altogether!  Where’s the [Egyptian] military?”  Another woman yells at the camera, “Tell the whole world, look—we’ve left our homes, and why? Because they kill our children, they kill our women, they kill our innocent people!  Why! Our children are terrified to go to schools.  Why? Why all this injustice!  Why doesn’t the president move and do something for us?  We can’t even answer our doors without being terrified!”

 

For his part, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi ordered military and security forces to “completely eradicate terrorism” in North Sinai.  Such a response might be reassuring to al-Arish’s Christians—if it wasn’t also dejavu.  Back in 2012, and in response to what Islamists perceived as widespread Christian support for Sisi’s military coup of then president Morsi—Copts in Sinai were heavily plummeted: one priest, Fr. Mina Cherubim, was shot dead in front of his church; a 65-year- old Christian trader was beheaded; several other Christians, including youths, were kidnapped, held for ransom, and later executed when the exorbitant ransoms could not be met.   Two churches were attacked, one burned. Just as now, hundreds of Christians fled their homes; and, just as now, Sisi vowed to root out the jihadi nests in Sinai… 

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

           

 

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HUNGARY’S UGLY STATE-SPONSORED HOLOCAUST REVISIONISM                                                                

James Kirchick                                                                                                                                        

Tablet, Mar. 13, 2017

 

A stone’s throw from Budapest’s majestic Gothic revival parliament building, Freedom Square teems with monuments attesting to Hungary’s turbulent 20th century. Dominating the north side of the plaza is a giant obelisk constructed by the Soviet Union and dedicated to the city’s Red Army liberators. A few paces south one finds a statue of Imre Nagy, the executed hero of Hungary’s 1956 anti-Soviet revolt, standing on a bridge looking forlornly on parliament. At the southern end of the square, outside a Calvinist church, stares a bust of Admiral Miklós Horthy, the authoritarian regent under whose reign Hungary passed the first anti-Semitic law of 20th-century Europe in 1920, allied with the Axis powers, and deported some half-million Jews to Auschwitz in the largest and swiftest mass transfer of the Final Solution. In the middle of it all, a bronzed Ronald Reagan walks briskly toward the nearby U.S. embassy. With its abundant memorials, this one plaza commemorates the grand sweep of Europe’s most influential 20th-century ideologies: communism, nationalism, fascism, and democracy.

 

On the Sunday morning of July 20, 2014, police cordoned off Freedom Square while construction workers put the finishing touches on an addition to this urban tableau already brimming with historical tributes: the Memorial to the Victims of the German Occupation. From the moment its construction was announced, following an opaque artistic competition lacking public consultation, it had been the subject of heated dispute. Beginning with its very title, which labels the unimpeded movement of German soldiers onto friendly territory an “occupation,” the memorial absolves Hungarians of complicity in the Holocaust. Depicting the Archangel Gabriel (described in the plans as “the man of God, symbol of Hungary”) under attack from a sharp-clawed German imperial eagle, it portrays the Hungarian nation as a collective victim of Nazi predation. This distortion of history obscures both the specifically anti-Jewish nature of the Holocaust and the Hungarian state’s active collaboration in mass murder. Randolph Braham, professor emeritus at the City University of New York and himself a Hungarian Holocaust survivor, writes about the role played by Hungarian authorities in the crime: “With Horthy still at the helm and providing the symbol of national sovereignty, the approximately 200,000 Hungarian policemen, gendarmes, civil servants, and ‘patriotic’ volunteers had collaborated in the anti-Jewish drive with a routine and efficiency that impressed even the relatively few SS who had served as ‘advisers.’ ” So able and willing were the Nazis’ Hungarian accomplices that Adolf Eichmann, the SS official in charge of deporting the country’s Jews to the death camps, managed to oversee the gruesome task with just 200 Germans at his command.

 

Had the nationalist government of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán not spent the previous four years conducting a campaign of historical distortion regarding the country’s Holocaust history, one might be more charitable about its motives for constructing this monument. Through a set of government-sponsored historical institutes, publicly funded documentaries, revisions to school curricula, bestowal of state honors to extreme right-wing figures, and erections of public monuments and museum exhibitions, the Orbán administration has disseminated a narrative that minimizes Hungarian culpability in the extermination of some half-million Jews and rehabilitates Horthy’s reputation from that of opportunistic Nazi ally to selfless defender of national independence.

 

Opposition to this revisionist crusade reached a critical phase in January 2014, around the same time that plans for the occupation memorial were unveiled. After the director of a government-subsidized historical center phlegmatically referred to the 1941 deportations of Jews living under Hungarian authority as a “police action against aliens,” outraged leaders of the Hungarian Jewish community announced they would cease cooperation with the government on activities marking the 70th-anniversary Holocaust Remembrance Year. Orbán decided to postpone work on the monument until after national elections in April, at which point consultations on its design would resume. But just two days after his party, Fidesz, secured a landslide victory, Orbán reneged on his promise and workers returned to the construction site, which by then had to be patrolled by police to keep protesters at bay. In an open letter to Orbán, 30 members of the U.S. Congress stated that while “Hungary is an important ally and partner of the United States,” it should “build an appropriate memorial that tells the entire Hungarian story of the Nazi Occupation, not one that whitewashes the truth.” Orbán was unmoved. The Hungarian government completed its controversial memorial in the dead of night, slipping the bronze angel and eagle into the square disguised in metal foil.

 

Budapest’s Memorial to the Victims of the German Occupation is distinguished not only by its revisionist message but also its vulgar design. Holocaust memorials tend to be solemn and subtly allegorical. Around the corner from the iconic Brandenburg Gate, Berlin’s more accurately named Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe—2,711 black concrete stelae arranged in a mazelike pattern on a sloping plaza—immediately unsettles visitors with its figurative representation of the Holocaust’s unfathomable depth. Elsewhere in Budapest, “Shoes on the Danube Bank” displays 60 pairs of iron footwear fastened to the river’s stone embankment, marking the last standing place of Jews who, every day during the 1944-1945 winter, were ordered to take off their shoes before being shot by Arrow Cross militiamen, the Nazis’ Hungarian accomplices…

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

                                                                                   

 

Contents

 

THE HOLOCAUST’S GREAT ESCAPE

Matthew Shaer

Smithsonian, Mar. 2017

 

Shortly after dawn one January day in 1944, a German military truck departed the center of Vilnius, in what is today Lithuania, and rattled southwest toward the fog-laced towns that ringed the city. Near the village of Ponar, the vehicle came to a halt, and a pale 18-year-old named Motke Zeidel, chained at the ankles, was led from the cargo hold.

 

Zeidel had spent the previous two years in German-occupied Vilnius, in the city’s walled-off Jewish ghetto. He’d watched as the Nazis sent first hundreds and then thousands of Jews by train or truck or on foot to a camp in the forest. A small number of people managed to flee the camp, and they returned with tales of what they’d seen: rows of men and women machine-gunned down at close range. Mothers pleading for the lives of their children. Deep earthen pits piled high with corpses. And a name: Ponar.

 

Now Zeidel himself had arrived in the forest. Nazi guards led him through a pair of gates and past a sign: “Entrance Strictly Forbidden. Danger to life. Mines.” Ahead, through the gaps in the pines, he saw massive depressions in the ground covered with fresh earth—the burial pits. “This is it,” he said to himself. “This is the end.”

 

The Nazi killing site at Ponar is today known to scholars as one of the first examples of the “Holocaust by bullets”—the mass shootings that claimed the lives of upwards of two million Jews across Eastern Europe. Unlike the infamous gas chambers at places like Auschwitz, these murders were carried out at close range, with rifles and machine guns. Significantly, the killings at Ponar marked the transition to the Final Solution, the Nazi policy under which Jews would no longer be imprisoned in labor camps or expelled from Europe but exterminated. Zeidel braced for the crack of a rifle. It never came. Opening his eyes, he found himself standing face to face with a Nazi guard, who told him that beginning immediately, he must work with other Jewish prisoners to cut down the pine trees around the camp and transport the lumber to the pits. “What for?” Zeidel later recalled wondering. “We didn’t know what for.”

 

A week later, he and other members of the crew received a visit from the camp’s Sturmbannführer, or commander, a 30-year-old dandy who wore boots polished shiny as mirrors, white gloves that reached up to his elbows, and smelled strongly of perfume. Zeidel remembered what the commandant told them: “Just about 90,000 people were killed here, lying in mass graves.” But, the Sturmbannführer explained, “there must not be any trace” of what had happened at Ponar, lest Nazi command be linked to the mass murder of civilians. All the bodies would have to be exhumed and burned. The wood collected by Zeidel and his fellow prisoners would form the pyres.

 

By late January, roughly 80 prisoners, known to historians as the Burning Brigade, were living in the camp, in a subterranean wood-walled bunker they’d built themselves. Four were women, who washed laundry in large metal vats and prepared meals, typically a chunk of ice and dirt and potato melted down to stew. The men were divided into groups. The weaker men maintained the pyres that smoldered through the night, filling the air with the heavy smell of burning flesh. The strongest hauled bodies from the earth with bent and hooked iron poles. One prisoner, a Russian named Yuri Farber, later recalled that they could identify the year of death based on the corpse’s level of undress: People who were murdered in 1941 were dressed in their outer clothing. In 1942 and 1943, however, came the so-called “winter aid campaign” to “voluntarily” give up warm clothing for the German Army. Beginning in 1942, people were herded in and forced to undress to their underwear.

 

Double-sided ramps were built inside the pits. One crew hauled stretchers filled with corpses up the ramp, and another crew pushed the bodies onto the pyre. In a week, the Burning Brigade might dispose of 3,500 bodies or more. Later, the guards forced prisoners to sift through the ashes with strainers, looking for bone fragments, which would then be pounded down into powder.

 

All told, historians have documented at least 80,000 people shot at Ponar between 1941 and 1944, and many believe the true number is greater still. Ninety percent of those killed were Jews. That the Nazis charged a brigade of prisoners to disinter and dispose of the bodies, in the most sickening of circumstances, only amplifies the horror. “From the moment when they made us bring up the corpses, and we understood that we wouldn’t get out of there alive, we reflected on what we could do,” Zeidel remembered. And so the prisoners turned to one thought: escape.

 

Richard Freund, an American archaeologist at the University of Hartford, in Connecticut, specializes in Jewish history, modern and ancient. He has been traversing the globe for almost three decades, working at sites as varied as Qumran, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered, and at Sobibor, a Nazi extermination camp in eastern Poland. Unusually for a man in his profession, he rarely puts trowel to earth. Instead, Freund, who is rumpled and stout, with eyes that seem locked in a perpetual squint, practices what he calls “noninvasive archaeology,” which uses ground-penetrating radar and other types of computerized electronic technology to discover and describe structures hidden underground…

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

 

CIJR Wishes All Our Friends & Supporters: Shabbat Shalom!

 

Contents

 

On Topic Links

 

Christian Groups Launch TV Series Defending Israel: Benjamin Glatt, Jerusalem Post, Mar. 7, 2017—A partnership of Christians groups have collaborated to create a series called “Why Israel Matters,” which intends to set the record straight on Israel and the Jewish state. Christians in Defense of Israel (CIDI), Liberty Counsel and the Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN) produced the 13-part original series that demonstrates the crucial importance of the Jewish state to Christians, to the United States and to the world in general. The first episode, which debuted February 28, can be seen online on TBN.

Persecuted Christians Suffer “Worst Year Yet,” Mostly Under Islam: Raymond Ibrahim, Frontpage, Mar. 30, 2017—The persecution of Christians around the world, but especially in the Muslim world, has reached an all-time high—with 2016 being the “worst year yet,” according to Open Doors, which recently released its annual ranking of the top 50 countries where Christians face the most persecution.

In Rediscovered Telegram, Himmler Offers Jerusalem’s Mufti Help Against ‘Jewish Intruders’: Sue Surkes, Times of Israel, Mar. 30, 2017 —A telegram from Heinrich Himmler to the grand mufti of Jerusalem has been found in the archives of Israel’s National Library.

‘The Zookeeper’s Wife’ Review: Maladaptation of the Species: Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal, Mar. 30, 2017—A single sequence can define the essence of a movie, or hint at what the movie might have been. In “The Zookeeper’s Wife” it’s the Luftwaffe’s bombing of the Warsaw zoo in September 1939, when Hitler’s forces have just invaded Poland.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WHILE ISLAMISTS PERSECUTE M.E. CHRISTIANS, UNESCO CONDEMNS ISRAEL FOR JERUSALEM “AGGRESSIONS”

 

UNESCO Has Cast Out Christianity: Paul Merkley, Bayview Review, Oct. 31, 2016 — The official website of UNESCO…

Hungary Opens Office for Persecuted Christians: Raymond Ibrahim, Frontpage, Oct. 14, 2016 — The nation of Hungary recently did something that is as unprecedented as it is commonsensical and humanitarian: it “has become the first government to open an office specifically to address the persecution of Christians in the Middle East and Europe.” 

Securing a Future for Religious Minorities in the Middle East: Ben Cohen, JNS, Oct. 7, 2016 — You have to wonder if the barbarians fighting under the flag of the Islamic State still believe that 72 virgins will be waiting for them in paradise once they become "martyrs."

The Palestinians’ War on the Balfour Declaration: Ruthie Blum, Jerusalem Post, Oct. 30, 2016 — Encouraged and empowered by the recent UNESCO resolution that rejects Jewish ties to the Temple Mount and the Western Wall…

 

On Topic Links

 

Why was Pope Francis AWOL at UNESCO vote?: Abraham Cooper and Yitzchok Adlerstein, Jewish Journal, Nov. 1, 2016

Embattled Christians Push for Homeland in Middle East: Perry Chiaramonte, Fox News, Sept. 13, 2016

US Must Support Safe Haven for Persecuted Christians in the Middle East: Mario Bramnick, JNS, Oct. 17, 2016

A Rabbi's Warning to U.S. Christians: Rabbi Daniel Lapin, CERC, 2007

 

UNESCO HAS CAST OUT CHRISTIANITY

Paul Merkley

                                      Bayview Review, Oct. 31, 2016

 

The official website of UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) explains that the body “was created in order to respond to the firm belief of nations, forged by two world wars in less than a generation that political and economic agreements are not enough to build a lasting peace. Peace must be established on the basis of humanity’s moral and intellectual solidarity.”

 

Over the last few days, serving in the cause of humanity’s moral and intellectual solidarity, UNESCO has ground out several resolutions condemning Israel for “aggressions” throughout Jerusalem and for “illegal measures” against the freedom of worship of Muslims. In the latest of these declarations, the sites upon and around the  Temple mount are referred only by their Muslim names – which has the intended effect of erasing memory of the Temple and of any belonging of Israel and the Jews.

 

While the attention of most of the world was on the mindless subversion of the right of Jews to belong in Jerusalem, few have noticed that these declarations – not incidentally, but frontally — eradicate the grounds for acceptance of the Gospel.

The hope of the gang of dictators and Muslim absolutist that run UNESCO is that they have damaged Israel by damaging Judaism.  However that may be, there can be no doubt that their greater mandate is to cast Christianity out into utter darkness – by decree of the Parliament of Nations.

 

As expected, the historic churches of the Western world … have so far ignored these resolutions altogether – on the assumption that they are intended to weaken the Jews, who, after all, have this coming. The only writers I have discovered who have noticed the larger threat that it presents to Christian are Jews. These are Shimon Koffler Fogel (National Post, October 19, 2016,) and Jonathan S. Tobin (Commentary, Oct. 2016.) What does this tell us about the theological alertness of Christian theologians?

 

Fogel notes: “The Christian Gospels explicitly record how Jesus, a practising Jew, preached in synagogues and visited the Temple in Jerusalem. To deny the presence of a Jewish Temple, a matter confirmed by independent scholarship, is to tell Christians that their Bible — and their understanding of the life of Jesus — is based on false history…From the heart of one brother to another, I urge my Christian friends: don’t be silent when those motivated by the politics of hate attempt to erase your Bible and our shared heritage.”…

 

In the immediate wake of World War, there went up a great sigh of surge of relief. Civilization had been rescued from barbarism, all the deep-thinkers said; democracy had passed its ultimate test. A spasm of idealism took hold among the intellectuals. Most of the world was still well outside the sphere of democracy and liberalism, but all would soon be inducted into a global fraternity of democracies. Champions of imperialism fell silent. Within two years, the British colonies of India and Pakistan were released to form independent nations –to be followed before long by all the other peoples that had made up the British, the French, the Italian and the Dutch empires.  The universal hope was that our civilization would set the example for the great community of self-governing community of free nations — ribs out of the side of European civilization…

 

The founding of the United Nations in 1945 was the earliest fruit of the new age of universal cooperation. But in fact over the next several years, every major issue that came before the UN Security Council and the UN General Assembly immediately occasioned bitter confrontation between the two Super Powers — the U.S. and the U.S.S.R. The only exception was the decision to Partition the Palestine Mandate. A vote of two-thirds was required:  33 voted in favor 13 against. All 11 of the Muslim states were among those who voted against. Britain abstained – not her finest hour.

 

This action could not have happened except at this moment when the level of idealism was high in Western politics, following the overthrow of the Axis powers. This would not happen again until the Soviet Union itself collapsed in 1990. But there was a large and ugly worm in this apple: all Arab nations and all Muslim nations opposed the Partition decision on theological grounds. Any lands once ruled by Muslims, they screamed, can never be yielded to non-Muslims.  In the case of Palestine, this general dictum was fortified by the circumstance that the world was asking Muslims to yield to Jews!

 

The Jewish people accepted and supported the Partition – which called for the creation of an Arab (not “a Palestinian” state.) The entire Arab world, abetted by the entire Muslim world, refused—and resorted to the God of War. The decision of the Jewish people in 1947 to comply with the UN decision with regard to Partition of Palestine and the refusal of the Muslim world to do the same has brought us today to Israel’s condemnation and the triumph of the non-compliant states. Because of the total solidarity in action of all Muslim nations within the UN and the consistent collaboration with them of that minority of the others who see advantage in trading favours with the UN’s largest bloc, UNESCO has become a patient partisan of Islam.

 

A similar sad history belongs to UNESCO, founded in 1945.  A shiny product of this mood of liberal optimism, it was intended as a device for accomplishing civilization, as understood by Western people, of putting scientific discovery at service of mankind to achieve global peace and good will among men. Muslim contempt for historical fact has become absolute during the last half-century or so. Back when the British ruled over Muslims and Jews within the Mandate that it held from the League of Nations, the Supreme Moslem Council published “A Brief Guide to al-Haram al-Sharif, wherein we read: “The site is one of the oldest in the world. Its sanctity dates from the earliest times. Its identity with the site of Solomon’s Temple is beyond dispute. This, too, is the spot, according to universal belief, on which David built there an altar unto the Lord, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings.”

 

But somewhere along the way Muslims everywhere have lost the little interest that they ever had in historical fact. The current head of the Supreme Moslem Council, Sheikh Ekrima Sabri, now proclaims:  “The Al-Buraq Wall [Western Wall] and its plaza are a Muslim religious property, and the Israeli government’s decisions do not affect it…The Al-Buraq Wall is part of the Al Aqsa Mosque. The Jews have no relation to it. (Al Ayam, Nov. 22, 1997) In the same spirit this imam calls for erasure of the myth of the Holocaust: “Six million Jews dead? No way, they were much fewer. Let’s stop with this fairytale exploited by Israel to capture international solidarity…” (Interview in La Republica, March 24, 2000, translated by MEMRI)…                        

 

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

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HUNGARY OPENS OFFICE FOR PERSECUTED CHRISTIANS                                                     

Raymond Ibrahim                                                                                                          

Frontpage, Oct. 14, 2016

 

The nation of Hungary recently did something that is as unprecedented as it is commonsensical and humanitarian: it “has become the first government to open an office specifically to address the persecution of Christians in the Middle East and Europe.” Zoltan Balog, Hungary’s Minister for Human Resources, explained: “Today, Christianity has become the most persecuted religion, where out of five people killed [for] religious reasons, four of them are Christians.  In 81 countries around the world, Christians are persecuted, and 200 million Christians live in areas where they are discriminated against. Millions of Christian lives are threatened by followers of radical religious ideologies.” “Followers of radical religious ideologies” is of course code for Muslims—they who are responsible for the overwhelming majority of Christian persecution in the world.

 

This move comes “after Hungary’s right-wing prime minister, Victor Orban, drew criticism in the EU by saying Europe should focus on helping Christians before helping millions of Muslims coming into Europe.” 

Orban explained: “If we really want to help, we should help where the real problem is.… We should first help the Christian people before Islamic people.” But do Western governments “really want to help” those suffering true persecution?  For if they did, not only would taking in “Christian people before Islamic people” be the most humane thing to do; it would also benefit Western nations as well.

 

Consider some facts: Unlike Muslims, Christian minorities are being singled out and persecuted simply because of their despised religious identity.  From a humanitarian point of view, then—and humanitarianism is the reason being cited for accepting millions of refugees—Christian refugees should receive greater priority over Muslim migrants.  Even before the Islamic State was formed, Christians were and continue to be targeted by Muslims—Muslim individuals, Muslim mobs, Muslim regimes, and Muslim terrorists, from Muslim countries of all races (Arab, African, Asian)—and for the same reason: they are infidel number one.  (See Crucified Again: Exposing Islam’s New War on Christians for hundreds of anecdotes before the rise of ISIS as well as the Muslim doctrines that create such hate and contempt for Christians.)

 

Conversely, Muslim refugees—as opposed to the many ISIS and other jihadi sympathizers posing as “refugees”—are not fleeing religious persecution (most Muslim migrants are, like ISIS, Sunnis), but chaos created by the violent and supremacist teachings of their own religion.  Hence why when large numbers of Muslims enter Western nations—in Germany, Sweden, France, the UK—tension, crimes, rapes, and terrorism soar.    And hence why Hungarian minister Balog also said: “Our interest not only lies in the Middle East but in forms of discrimination and persecution of Christians all over the world.  It is therefore to be expected that we will keep a vigilant eye on the more subtle forms of persecutions within European borders.”

 

Indeed, what more is needed than the fact that so-called Muslim “refugees” are throwing Christians overboard during their boat voyages across the Mediterranean to Europe?  Or that Muslim majority refugee centers in Europe are essentially microcosms of Muslim majority nations: there, Christian minorities continue to be persecuted.

 

Most recently a report found that 88% of the 231 Christian refugees interviewed in Germany have suffered religiously motivated persecution in the form of insults, death threats, and sexual assaults. Some were pressured to convert to Islam.  “I really didn’t know that after coming to Germany I would be harassed because of my faith in the very same way as back in Iran,” one Christian refugee said.  “These are not isolated cases. I don’t know of any refugee shelter from Garmisch to Hamburg where we have not found such cases,” said a German authority. Is persecuting religious minorities the behavior of people who are in need of a sympathetic welcome by Europeans and Americans? Or is this behavior yet another reminder that it is non-Muslims from the Middle East who are truly in need of sanctuary?

 

Western nations should further accept Christian refugees because Western foreign policies are directly responsible for exacerbating their persecution.  Christians did not flee from Bashar Assad’s Syria, or Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, or Muamar Gaddafi’s Libya.  Their systematic persecution—to the point of genocide—began only after the U.S. and other European nations interfered in those nations under the pretext of “democracy.”  All they did is unleash the jihadi forces that the dictators had long kept suppressed. Now the Islamic State is deeply embedded in all three nations, enslaving, raping, and slaughtering countless Christian “infidels” and other minorities.

 

Surely if the West is responsible for unleashing the full-blown jihad on Christians, the least it can do is put Christians on the top of its refugee list—that is, if it “really cares” about helping?  In fact, it’s the opposite: report after report has shown that in Western nations persecuted Christians are “at the bottom of the heap” of refugees to be granted asylum.  Despite the U.S. government’s acknowledgement that ISIS is committing genocide against Christians in Syria, the Obama administration has taken in 5,435 Muslims, but only 28 Christians—even though Christians are approximately 10 percent of Syria’s population; in other words, to be on the same ratio with Muslims, at least 500 Christians should’ve been granted asylum, not 28.

 

There are even some benefits in taking in Mideast Christians instead of Muslims.  Christians are easily assimilated in Western countries, due to the shared Christian heritage.  Muslims follow a completely different blueprint, Islamic law, or Sharia—which condemns and calls for constant war (jihad) against all non-Muslims, and advocates any number of distinctly anti-Western practices (female subjugation and sex slavery, death for blasphemers and apostates, etc.).   Hence it’s no surprise that many Muslim asylum seekers are anti-Western at heart—or, as the German police union chief recently said, Muslim migrants “despise our country and laugh at our justice.”…

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

                                                                       

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SECURING A FUTURE FOR RELIGIOUS MINORITIES

IN THE MIDDLE EAST                                                                 

Ben Cohen                                                          

JNS, Oct. 7, 2016

 

You have to wonder if the barbarians fighting under the flag of the Islamic State still believe that 72 virgins will be waiting for them in paradise once they become "martyrs." I say this not because the leaders and foot soldiers of ISIS have suddenly woken up to the possibility that this belief is based, according to several scholars, on a mistranslation of the relevant verse of the Qu'ran; that would be expecting too much of them. I say this because they have already had a taste of that paradise here on earth, as a result of their campaign of genocide against the Yazidi religious minority in Iraq and Syria. One aspect of this horrific slaughter has been the kidnapping of thousands of Yazidi women and girls to serve as sexual slaves to these savages.

 

A recent report from the U.N. Human Rights Council – a body that spends most of its time condemning Israel for alleged human rights violations – sheds some light on both the scale and the nature of the genocide, which was ignored by the international community for far too long. The campaign against the Yazidis was launched by ISIS over two years ago, in Aug. 2014, when its forces began an assault upon the Yazidi villages in Sinjar, a district in the northern Iraqi province of Nineveh. At least 5,000 Yazidis have been killed during the genocide, while 3,200 women and children remain in ISIS captivity. About 70,000, estimated to make up 15 percent of the overall Yazidi population, are reported to have fled Iraq.

 

The stories related by the U.N. report will be depressingly familiar to anyone who has studied genocide over the last century. Men and boys are either executed or forcibly converted, while women and girls exist solely for the use and pleasure of ISIS terrorists. The manner of the persecution is gruesome. "After we were captured, ISIS forced us to watch them beheading some of our Yazidi men," said one 16-year-old girl. "They made the men kneel in a line in the street, with their hands tied behind their backs. The ISIS fighters took knives and cut their throats."

 

Despite this reign of terror, the Yazidis have not been destroyed as a distinctive group. Before the ISIS attacks began, around 700,000 Yazidis are said to have lived in Iraq, the largest single concentration of the religion's followers. Kurdish in terms of their ethnicity, the Yazidi faith is described by scholars as syncretic, which means it combines elements of other religions, including Judaism, Zoroastrianism, Christianity and Islam. Based on that, it's worth noting that ISIS isn't the only Islamist group that regards the Yazidis as infidels. The theology of more mainstream Islamist groups, like the Muslim Brotherhood, assigns them a similar status.

 

Presently, the main focus for the Yazidis is the rescue of their women and girls from the clutches of ISIS. Often this is done through ransom payments, involving middlemen who collect huge sums from their families – one recently reunited family paid a total of $34,000 for their two daughters – which are then paid to ISIS. After their release, both girls said they didn't expect that they would see each other again, describing their captors as "dirty and abusive," who subjected them to regular beatings. What this illustrates is the need for greater physical security for the Yazidis, as well as for other religious minorities in the region, if and when ISIS is defeated. Without that concrete measure, continued religious and ethnic conflict in the Middle East will target vulnerable minorities first and foremost…

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

 

Contents           

             

THE PALESTINIANS’ WAR ON THE BALFOUR DECLARATION                                                

Ruthie Blum                                                                                             

Jerusalem Post, Oct. 30, 2016

 

Encouraged and empowered by the recent UNESCO resolution that rejects Jewish ties to the Temple Mount and the Western Wall, the Palestinian Authority is boasting about plans to hold a series of global events throughout the coming year to decry the establishment of the State of Israel. The purpose of the campaign, described by the Qudsnet News Agency as “massive,” is to “make the international community, and especially Britain, confront their historical responsibilities and call on them to atone for this major crime committed, and raise the issue of the historical injustice inflicted on the Palestinian people.”

 

The “major crime” in question is the November 2, 1917 Balfour Declaration, sent by the UK foreign secretary to Jewish community leader Walter Rothschild, to be delivered to the Zionist Federation of Great Britain and Ireland. “His Majesty’s government view with favor the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavors to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country,” it stated.

 

Though this was well before the term “Palestinians” – or people calling themselves “Palestinians” – even existed – distorting history is part and parcel of their effort to delegitimize Israel in any and every way possible. The UNESCO vote is but one tiny example of this practice, which is gaining momentum with the help of Western leftists. Another is the incessant cacophony about Israeli settlements constituting an “obstacle to peace.” Ironically, the very fact that all PA factions make no bones about considering the Jewish state a catastrophe worthy of annual mourning – and deserving of the slaughter of innocent Jews – does not serve to dissuade proponents of a two-state solution from their claim that new apartments in the West Bank are unnecessarily provocative.

 

On the contrary, though PA President Mahmoud Abbas said clearly that no Jews would be welcome in PA-controlled territory under any circumstances, when Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called attention to this blatant antisemitism, it was he who was mercilessly berated far and wide, especially by the White House and State Department. Saeb Erekat, the Palestinians’ chief “peace” negotiator, took the opportunity, as he always does, to use US criticism of Israel as a way to prove that the Jewish state was born and lives in sin. In a Washington Post op-ed last Tuesday, Erekat did this in the context of the Balfour Declaration, which he called the “symbolic beginning of the denial of our rights.” Chastising the world for not taking significant steps to end the travesty of Israel’s existence, he spewed customary lies about how the Jewish state came into being.

“The Palestinian people were violently dispossessed from their homes and exiled from their homeland in 1948, endured the occupation in 1967, only to be forced into the historic compromise recognizing the 1967 border as the borders of the state of Palestine,” he wrote, conveniently omitting the true story of Israel’s War of Independence and the Six Day War 19 years later – the assault of surrounding Arab armies on a tiny fledgling country that spent much of its time trying to come to an arrangement with those bent on its annihilation.

 

Erekat’s piece was in keeping with Abbas’ announcement in July that the PA was going to file a lawsuit against Britain for the Balfour Declaration. This was conveyed in July by PA Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki to the Arab League Summit in Mauritania, which Abbas was unable to attend due to the death of his brother. In spite of the fact that Omar Abbas had been treated for cancer at a Tel Aviv hospital – along with the family members of many top figures in Fatah and Hamas – the PA leader was going ahead with his litigation against the UK over the 100-year-old document, “after which hundreds of thousands of Jews arrived from Europe and other places in Palestine at the expense of our people.” With such a blatant admission of its actual position on Jewish statehood – going so far as to wage war on the Balfour Declaration – the PA should be treated with the disdain and derision it deserves.

 

CIJR Wishes All Our Friends & Supporters: Shabbat Shalom!

 

On Topic Links

 

Why was Pope Francis AWOL at UNESCO vote?: Abraham Cooper and Yitzchok Adlerstein, Jewish Journal, Nov. 1, 2016—The actions of the Arab-led coalition that pushed through the UNESCO resolution on the Temple Mount were despicable but expected. The silence of the Catholic Church was cowardly, unpredictable, and disappointing.

Embattled Christians Push for Homeland in Middle East: Perry Chiaramonte, Fox News, Sept. 13, 2016—Christians driven from their ancestral homelands and persecuted by Islamist terrorists are pressing for an autonomous region of their own if the dust of Middle East violence ever settles.

US Must Support Safe Haven for Persecuted Christians in the Middle East: Mario Bramnick, JNS, Oct. 17, 2016 —Great suffering is occurring in Iraq and Syria. The region is ravaged by terror. Millions have been forced from their homes. Christians and other ethno-religious minorities have suffered genocide at the hands of the Islamic State (ISIS). The shutting down of U.S. military operations in Iraq created political instability that left a power vacuum filled by terror groups bent on destroying Western civilization. ISIS has forced millions of Iraqis and Syrians from their homes destabilizing the surrounding nations and exporting the problems of the Middle East to Europe.

A Rabbi's Warning to U.S. Christians: Rabbi Daniel Lapin, CERC, 2007—During the 1930s, Winston Churchill desperately tried to persuade the English people and their government to see that Hitler meant to end their way of life. The British ignored Churchill, which gave Hitler nearly 10 years to build up his military forces. It wasn't until Hitler actually drew blood that the British realized they had a war on their hands. It turned out to be a far longer and more destructive war than it needed to be had Churchill's early warning been heeded.

 

 

 

 

FIGHTING ANTISEMITISM IN EUROPE-WITH KNOWLEDGE ABOUT ISRAEL AND THE HOLOCAUST

We welcome your comments to this and any other CIJR publication. Please address your response to:  Rob Coles, Publications Chairman, Canadian Institute for Jewish Research, PO Box 175, Station  H, Montreal QC H3G 2K7 – Tel: (514) 486-5544 – Fax:(514) 486-8284; E-mail: rob@isranet.org

 

 

 Contents:         

 

Download today's Isranet Daily Briefing.pdf

 

 

 

In Hungary, Antisemitism Rises Again: Marianne Szegedy-Maszak, New York Times, Oct. 29, 2013 — My father, Aladar Szegedy-Maszak, a Hungarian diplomat, dined with Adolf Hitler three times. And then he went to the concentration camp at Dachau.

Teaching About the Holocaust as an Antidote to Rising Hate in Europe: Shimon Ohayon, Jerusalem Post, Oct. 9, 2013— A shadow many thought resigned to the dustbin of history is currently spreading over the European continent. Politicians, steeped in National Socialism, xenophobia and anti-Semitism, are taking seats in European parliaments across Europe.

Why Europe Needs Israel: Richard Mather, Arutz Sheva,  Nov. 1, 2013— Zeev Elkin, Israel's deputy foreign minister is worried that the chasm between the EU and Israel will continue to grow if there is no solution to the new EU criteria concerning Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria. I think Elkin is worrying too much. Yes, Israel is heavily dependent on trading agreements with Europe, but it’s just as true to say that Europe is dependent on Israel.

 

On Topic Links

 

France: Antisemitism Now Mainstream: Guy Millière, Gatestone Institute, Oct. 30, 2013

The Righteous: Shula Kopf, The Jerusalem Report, Sept. 29, 2013

Soviet Defector Fled Russia to Start a New Life in Canada-Now He’s Helping to Restore an Old Jewish Cemetery in Siberia: Joe O’Connor, National Post, Oct. 29, 2013

Book Review: Wonder of Wonders: a Cultural History of Fiddler on the Roof: Alisa Solomon, Wall Street Journal, Oct. 29, 2013

 

IN HUNGARY, ANTISEMITISM RISES AGAIN

Marianne Szegedy-Maszak
New York Times,, Oct. 29, 2013

 

My father, Aladar Szegedy-Maszak, a Hungarian diplomat, dined with Adolf Hitler three times.

And then he went to the concentration camp at Dachau. As secretary to the Hungarian ambassador to Germany from 1932 to 1937, my father watched the rise of the Führer. He encountered him socially at a reception and two dinners — the first time on Feb. 10, 1933, at Hitler’s first speech as chancellor. He remembered how sweat poured from Hitler’s face, soaking his uniform. The speech left my father cold, but also deeply unsettled by the rhapsodic reactions of the audience. “This was my first personal experience that we were dealing with a quasi-religious mass movement,” he wrote, “or perhaps more accurately, a mass psychosis.”

 

My father knew how devastating Nazi rule would be for the Jews. Hungarian Jews came to his office in droves, imploring him for advice as to how they could help themselves as property was seized and small businesses destroyed. He met movie directors and actresses; small-business owners; a landlord who owned a block of houses in a workingmen’s neighborhood of Berlin who was told that if he didn’t leave, he would be charged with molesting women. There was nothing he could do.

 

The hardy perennial of anti-Semitism has made a dramatic comeback in Central Europe. Germany has recently reiterated its friendship with Israel, in response to recent anti-Jewish activity. Far-right political parties in France and Austria have gained force. In Hungary, a virulently anti-Semitic party, Jobbik, is now the third-largest in Parliament. One party official has called for a list of all Jewish legislators, to assess their loyalty — a move that even the right-wing government condemned. (Earlier this month, the government pledged, in the face of global criticism, to crack down on anti-Semitism.)

 

This all would have been troubling yet familiar to my father and other relatives of his generation. They came of age in a country that was a stew of anti-Semitism. After World War I, Communists ruled for more than four months, and since most of those in power were Jews, the link between Communism and Judaism was forged in many minds. For many Hungarians, to be anti-Communist meant being anti-Semitic. My father was not a convinced anti-Semite, but as a Hungarian Christian from a strong family tradition of support for the monarchy, he flirted with anti-Semitism as a young man — a fact he was ashamed of his entire life. The experiences in Berlin, he wrote, “extinguished the last, minimal remnants of anti-Semitism that I had had as a teenager during the counterrevolution.” His years in Berlin, and his two other encounters with Hitler, were antidotes to any vestiges of anti-Semitism he had once harbored.

 

At a diplomatic reception in September 1934 before the Nuremberg rally that Leni Riefenstahl famously memorialized in “Triumph of the Will,” my father could not reconcile the old-fashioned, modest, almost shy Hitler with the raving lunatic he had seen at rallies. The final time he met Hitler was June 7, 1942. The prime minister of Hungary was invited on an official visit to the Führer’s wartime headquarters in East Prussia and asked my father — now deputy head of the political division in the Foreign Ministry — to go with him. They ate in Hitler’s dining car and my father saw what he later referred to as “the Satanic nature of his character.”

 

Hungary was an ally of Germany, but an extremely unreliable one. Its officials refused to deport Jews to concentration camps. My father, known for his opposition to Nazism, had attempted to organize an effort to negotiate a separate peace with the Allies, an effort that failed and led to his arrest after the Germans invaded Hungary, on March 19, 1944. After a regime of Hungarian Nazis took over in October 1944, voices of moderation were jailed or killed. Some 440,000 Jews were deported. Members of the gendarmerie were enthusiastic participants in the process. Ultimately some 600,000 Hungarian Jews were murdered.

 

If anti-Communism represented one side of hatred for Jews, anticapitalism represented another. My mother’s family, the highly assimilated children and grandchildren of the Hungarian Jewish industrialist Manfred Weiss, fell into the latter category. My maternal grandfather was transported to the Mauthausen concentration camp in Austria after the invasion of Hungary, but he was lucky. He and his family were granted safe passage to Portugal after making, in effect, a deal with Heinrich Himmler for freedom in exchange for their property. Before this deal was made, my maternal grandmother had disguised herself as a Hungarian peasant during the Nazi occupation. She met the wife of the anti-Semitic former prime minister (and Nazi collaborator) Bela Imredy, with whom my mother’s family had once socialized (albeit not with great closeness). My grandmother asked if there was anything Mrs. Imredy could do to save my grandfather. Mrs. Imredy replied that she couldn’t. And as they parted she turned and said, ominously and elliptically, “Now it’s our turn.”

 

My parents married at the end of 1945, after my father was liberated at the war’s end. He later became the Hungarian ambassador to the United States. He resigned in 1947, after the Communist takeover. He and my mother managed to remain in America. My father died in 1988, my mother in 2002. I wonder what they would make of Hungary today. The same stereotypes of the past — the association of Jews with Communism and capitalism — fuel the support for Jobbik today.

 

Into this caldron has stepped the great conductor Ivan Fischer, himself a Hungarian Jew. He recently composed and performed an opera entitled Red Heifer that chronicles the story of a small group of Jews in the 19th century who were wrongly accused of the murder of a Hungarian girl from the countryside. It is a true story, one that uses the distant past to illuminate a dark time in the present.

Of course it is unlikely to change any minds. But the simple fact of it is an affirmation of the power of art to accomplish what decent politicians cannot. It is also an example the terrible persistence of a state of mind, a kind of psychopathy that did not begin with Hitler and, tragically, did not end with him.

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TEACHING ABOUT THE HOLOCAUST AS AN

ANTIDOTE TO RISING HATE IN EUROPE

Shimon Ohayon

Jerusalem Post, Oct. 9, 2013

 

A shadow many thought resigned to the dustbin of history is currently spreading over the European continent. Politicians, steeped in National Socialism, xenophobia and anti-Semitism, are taking seats in European parliaments across Europe. Parties like the Golden Dawn in Greece, Svoboda in Ukraine and Jobbik in Hungary have gained significant political representation in their respective parliaments and portals of power. They are also parties steeped in hate and violence. Among their recent activities are calling for lists of Jews to be drawn up, holding intimidating midnight torch rallies, beating up minorities and allegedly even murdering dissenters. While these actions may be undertaken by a few, the party platforms of the neo-Nazi parties are attempting to offer hope to a Europe reeling from a massive economic depression.

 

As we well know from the past, this is another strong echo of the past; the Nazis were able to gain power in Germany because of dire economic circumstances. In some parts of Europe, unemployment among youth is over 50 percent, and these parties are specifically targeting the malcontents among their populations. As someone who has spent the whole of his professional life in education, I sincerely believe that the greatest shield against hate is knowledge. The more people, particularly the younger sectors of society, understand about the true consequences of Nazi ideology, the more likely they are to abhor it.

 

A short time ago, I had the pleasure of visiting the Balkan region. While I was in Macedonia I was particularly impressed with the attitude of the Macedonian government toward commemorating those Jews who perished in the Holocaust. I was particularly touched by the government initiative for schools to visit the Holocaust Memorial Center for the Jews of Macedonia in Skopje. Every year since its opening, thousands of Macedonian schoolchildren visit the center to learn about the Holocaust and particularly about the murder of thousands of Macedonian Jews at the Treblinka death camp. Speaking to my parliamentary colleagues in Macedonia and some of the participants on these visits, it is clear that these visits have a chilling yet vital effect.

 

While the Holocaust is a very well known subject in Israel, in parts of Europe the average schoolchild will not be familiar with even its most basic details. These visits put the children face to face with the consequences of hate and evil. They are taught to disavow hate, racism and xenophobia because of the information they absorb during these short trips. In 2006, three Scottish academics began studying whether educating high school students about the Holocaust has an impact on pupils’ citizenship values and attitudes, and particularly those values and attitudes relating to various minority or disadvantaged groups. The study found that there were positive dispositions ascertained toward minorities in the aftermath of the lessons on the Holocaust. In terms of comparing the core sample with their peers who had not had the opportunity to study the Holocaust, there is evidence that the core sample had stronger positive values, were more tolerant and more disposed to active citizenship by their understanding of individual responsibility with regard to racism. The authors of the study wrote to the Scottish authorities in their conclusions that the evidence “certainly suggests that learning about the Holocaust in primary school can have both an immediate and lasting impact on pupils’ values.”

 

There are many similar studies which demonstrate that learning about the Holocaust and visiting Holocaust memorials or even concentration camps has a positive effect on the moral compass of individuals and can prove to be an important buttress to the steadily growing neo-Nazi propaganda. In 2000, the now renamed International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, an inter-governmental organization, signed the Declaration of the Stockholm International Forum on the Holocaust. The stated aims of the IHRA are to mobilize and coordinate political and social leaders’ support for Holocaust education, remembrance and research at national and international levels.

 

While the IHRA was originally created to fight ignorance and denial with regard to the Holocaust, the teaching of the Holocaust can have a much wider impact on European society. It can be an antidote against the hate that is on the rise in large parts of Europe. It can militate against the feelings of despair neo-Nazi groups are feeding off of. European countries should follow the Macedonian model of sending as many children as possible to Holocaust museums and concentrating resources on Holocaust education. As Jews, we applaud the study of this great tragedy that befell our people. However, European leaders should welcome and increase these initiatives for their own reasons, primarily to teach the values of tolerance and to stem the rise of the growing neo-Nazi phenomena. They are an vital investment in the European future.

 

As the essayist George Santayana famously said: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” Europeans must remember this dark chapter of history because there are events taking place every day which are eerily reminiscent of the National Socialists’ amassing of political power leading up to the Holocaust. Europeans must be taught the past so they can stand in the way of these groups in ways that their ancestors did not, before it is too late.

Contents

WHY EUROPE NEEDS ISRAEL

Richard Mather

Arutz Sheva, Nov. 1, 2013

 

Zeev Elkin, Israel's deputy foreign minister is worried that the chasm between the EU and Israel will continue to grow if there is no solution to the new EU criteria concerning Jewish settlements in Judea and Samaria. I think Elkin is worrying too much. Yes, Israel is heavily dependent on trading agreements with Europe, but it’s just as true to say that Europe is dependent on Israel. Why? For the simple reason that Europe must become a dynamic knowledge economy if it is to compete with Asia and the US, and the best way to achieve this is for the EU to work closely with its neighbor and economic partner, Israel.

After all, when it comes to knowledge-based industries, Israel is one of the most competitive economies on the planet thanks to its remarkable capacity for innovation. Indeed, it is no secret that Israel is a world-leader in the hi-tech and start-up sectors. Israel’s remarkable laboratories and scientific institutes are the envy of the world and a magnet for international investment. Let’s look at the facts. Israel boasts around 4,000 technology start-ups, which is more than any other country outside the US. Not surprisingly, half of Israel's exports are of the hi-tech variety. Israel leads the world in patents for medical equipment and is a supplier of inexpensive but crucial medicines to Europe (such as Copaxone for multiple sclerosis and Actos for type 2 diabetes).  And it has attracted the most venture capital investment per capita in the world, 30 times more than Europe.

 

In the years and decades to come, Israeli engineers, computer scientists, inventors, chemists and biologists will drive not only Israel’s economy but will provide benefits to Europe and the world at large. The UK for example is quietly building solid trade links with Israel amid talk of a stronger partnership between British and Israeli companies in the areas of innovation, hi-tech and science. (The fact that a young and tiny country like Israel is well ahead of the UK in terms of research and development speaks volumes about the lackluster nature of British industry.) If Europe wants to compete with China and the US in the areas of medical technology, homeland security, communications and aviation, then it must cooperate with Israel and jettison its pointless obsession with Palestinian Arabism. On one level, the EU is well aware of this. This is why Israel was the first non-European country to be associated to the EU’s Research and Technical Development program. It is also why the EU wants Israel involved in the Horizon 2020 program. But there is a problem. In July the EU issued guidelines (due to come into effect next January) that say any agreement between the EU and Israel must include a clause in which Israel relinquishes its claim over East Jerusalem and Judea-Samaria. This is unacceptable to Israel and has jeopardized Israel’s involvement in Horizon 2020, the EU’s flagship initiative aimed at securing Europe's global competitiveness.

 

Antonio Tajani, the European Commission’s vice president for enterprise and industry, has pledged to strengthen industrial cooperation between the EU and Israel. Indeed, the whole point of his recent two-day mission to Israel was to procure Israel’s cooperation in the areas of space technology, communications and water technology. The implication is that without Israeli input, EU industry will lag behind the rest of the world. Tajani specifically wants Israel to sign the Horizon 2020 agreement because Europe needs Israel’s cooperation in the areas of job creation and scientific research. In other words, Israel’s involvement in the flagship scheme would not only benefit the Jewish state, it would boost prosperity in Europe. This is echoed by Elmar Brok, a German Christian Democrat politician and foreign policy adviser to Angela Merkel. He has publicly stated that Israel’s participation in Horizon 2020 is important to Europe. “I think it is a European interest. It would be stupid of us if we do not continue this cooperation,” he said, before adding: “Because it is very much to our advantage.”

 

The deadline to sign Horizon 2020 is the end of November, which is why the EU is trying desperately to reach a compromise solution in the coming weeks. Without Israel, Europe is less competitive. And in the aftermath of a global recession and a continuing Eurozone crisis, a return to economic competitiveness is vital for the well-being of Europe and the rest of the world. The EU leadership must be realistic and abandon the insane boycott of Judea and Samaria and concentrate instead on building solid relations with the world’s leading innovator, Israel.

 

                                                                                                Contents

France: Antisemitism Now Mainstream: Guy Millière, Gatestone Institute, Oct. 30, 2013— When a leading Jewish organization complained about "a dangerous trivialization of anti-Semitism," the President of the TV channel responded by saying that the Jewish community had "no sense of humor."

The Righteous: Shula Kopf, The Jerusalem Report, Sept. 29, 2013— It is 50 years since the State of Israel began to express the gratitude of the Jewish people to those rare individuals who saved Jews during the Holocaust.

Soviet Defector Fled Russia to Start a New Life in Canada-Now He’s Helping Restore an Old Jewish Cemetery in Siberia: Joe O’Connor, National Post, Oct. 5, 2013— Vladimir Rott is an engineer and, lately, an author, and if he were to add anything else to his career list a good fit might be high stakes poker player. Mr. Rott, see, has got guts. Nerve.

Book Review: Wonder of Wonders: a Cultural History of Fiddler on the Roof by Alisa Solomon: Shelly Salamensky, Wall Street Journal, Oct. 29, 2013— As he lay dying, my father made my mother pledge that the soundtrack from Fiddler on the Roof would be played at his funeral.

 

 

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Rob Coles, Publications Chairman, Canadian Institute for Jewish ResearchL'institut Canadien de recherches sur le Judaïsme, www.isranet.org

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