Tag: Israel Boycott

Manfred Gerstenfeld: THE BOYCOTT: ICELAND’S ANTI-SEMITISM RESURFACES AGAIN

 

 

 

Recent developments in Iceland fit well in the long history of that country’s anti-Semitism. Last week, the left wing majority on the Reykjavik municipal council decided on a boycott of all Israeli products. In view of the protests, the city’s mayor now wants to replace it with a boycott of settlement goods.[1]

 

There is more of the same. Every year, during the period of Lent before Easter, Icelanders get a daily dose of hymns full of hatred and derision for the Jews, broadcast on Iceland’s public radio station. These hymns were written in the seventeenth century by an Icelandic Christian priest, poet and inciter Hallgrimur Pétturson, many years before the first Jew arrived in Iceland. This ongoing tradition demonstrates how little Iceland has learned from the Holocaust.

 

In 2012, after I had drawn the attention of the Simon Wiesenthal Center to this hateful practice, Rabbi Marvin Hier and Rabbi Abraham Cooper, heads of the Center, wrote to Mr. Pall Magnusson, the General Director of Iceland’s Radio and TV. They mentioned that there were over fifty remarks about Jews in the poems, all negative. They also noted that it is considered a great honor in Iceland to be invited to read a hymn on the program. The many distinguished citizens who had accepted this distinction included a President of Iceland.

 

The following are some examples of the many anti-Semitic slurs in these hymns:

 

The Demand for Crucifixion

The Jewish leaders all decide 
That Jesus must be crucified 
The Prince of Life their prey must be 
The murd'rer set at liberty

 

Christ led from the Judgment Hall

The Jewish crowd replied
"Away with Him!" they shouted, 
Their enmity undoubted 
"He must be crucified!"
The righteous law of Moses 
The Jews here misapplied, 
Which their deceit exposes,
Their hatred and their pride.

 

At the time, the letter denouncing the hymn-reading practice had no result. With regard to the current boycott, however, the Simon Wiesenthal Center’s travel advisory warning Jews not to visit Iceland and the angry reaction of Ronald Lauder, President of the World Jewish Congress, has apparently made more of an impact. Regarding the travel advisory, Rabbi Cooper stated that “when the elected leaders of its main city pass an extreme anti-Israel and anti-Semitic law, we would caution any member of a Jewish community about traveling there.”[2]

 

The Simon Wiesenthal Center has also exposed Iceland’s anti-Semitism on another occasion, in the case of the Nazi war criminal Evald Mikson. At the end of the 1980s, Efraim Zuroff, Director of the Israel branch of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, tried to bring Mikson to trial for his involvement in the murder of Jews in his native Estonia. Mikson found a warm refuge in Iceland, where his sons played in the national soccer team. Zuroff’s justified appeals for justice against an accomplice to murder led to many Icelandic media attacks against Israel. Mikson himself died shortly after the Estonian  government set up a commission to investigate his war crimes, over 10 years after Zuroff’s initial appeals. Only after Mikson’s death did the investigators find that he had indeed committed atrocities.[3]

 

At that time, during a debate on the Mikson case in parliament, several Icelandic parliamentarians felt they had to comment on the Middle East and on Israel’s policies. One such was Olafur Grimsson, at that time leader of the left-wing People’s Alliance, who condemned Israeli attacks on southern Lebanese towns, and Israel’s “murder” of Hezbollah leader Abbas Musawi. Grimsson has been serving as the ongoing President of Iceland since 1996. Curiously, the First Lady of Iceland is a Jewish woman whom Grimsson married in 2003.

The current boycott of Israel was proposed by the Social Democrat Alliance. As part of the 2011 Icelandic government, they had already promised the Palestinians support for their bid for statehood at the next UN General Assembly. Ossur Skarphedinsson, the then Social Democrat Foreign Minister, is known for his frequent snubbing of Israel. During the first Gaza flotilla, some members of parliament suggested imposing sanctions on Israel, to the point of breaking off diplomatic relations. Iceland even refused to receive Minister Yuli Tamir, when she was sent to Europe during the Gaza “Cast Lead” war.[4]

 

Iceland’s 2005 decision to grant citizenship to former world chess champion Bobby Fischer constituted yet another shameful anti-Semitic Icelandic act. Fischer, a rabid anti-Semite of Jewish ancestry was detained in a Japanese prison at the time, and attempting to avoid deportation to the US.[5]

 

Vilhjálmur Örn Vilhjálmsson, an expert on the history of the Jews and anti-Semitism in Iceland, has written that several Icelandic members of the Waffen SS fought for Nazi Germany, and others served in concentration camps. He added that after the war, various former members of Iceland’s Nazi party quickly “attained high positions in society, including a couple of chiefs of police, a bank director and some doctors.”

 

Vilhjálmsson also describes Iceland’s 1938 deportation of an impoverished German Jewish refugee to Denmark. Icelandic authorities at the time even offered to cover all costs for his expulsion to Nazi Germany if Denmark didn’t want him. Other similar incidents became known in 1997, but did not make headlines in Iceland.[6]

 

In view of all this, one can only hope that even now the Icelandic government has dissociated itself from the boycott and after the boycott will probably be reduced the Wiesenthal Center will maintain its travel ban and will once again expose Iceland’s annual broadcasts of anti-Semitic hymns.

 

 



[1] Herb Keinon, “Iceland's capital votes to boycott all Israeli products,” The Jerusalem Post, 16 September 2015.

 

[2] “Wiesenthal Center tells Jews not to go to Reykjavik,” Times of Israel, 18 September 2015.

[3] Efraim Zuroff, ”One who Got Away,” The Jerusalem Post, 17 January 2010.

[4] Manfred Gerstenfeld, “Iceland against Israel,” Ynetnews, 18 July 2011.

[5] Sarah Lyall, “Iceland Granting Citizenship to Bobby Fischer, Held in Japan,” New York Times, 22 March  2005.

[6] Vilhjálmur Örn Vilhjálmsson, “Iceland, the Jews, and Anti-Semitism 1625-2004,” in Manfred Gerstenfeld (ed.) Behind the Humanitarian Mask. The Nordic Countries, Israel and the Jews (Jerusalem, Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs and Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center for Holocaust Studies, 2008) 219-239.

 

IT’S IAW-TIME AGAIN: DESPITE SCARLETT’S VICTORY, BDS SUCCEEDS AT U. OF WINDSOR; YET “APARTHEID” ANTISEMITISM’S VICTORIES SCARCE, & ARAB ECONOMIC CLOUT IS DECLINING

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



                                           

U of W Students Pass Controversial Referendum to Boycott Israel: Rebecca Wright , Windsor Star, Mar.  2, 2014— Passage of a controversial University of Windsor student referendum to boycott Israel has sparked safety concerns for some Jewish students on campus, as well as complaints that have prompted an investigation of the vote by the school’s administration.

‘Israeli Apartheid’ – the New Form of Anti-Semitism: John M. Duffy, Jerusalem Post, Feb. 26, 2014— The Afrikaans word “apartheid” means “the state of being apart.”

Secretary ScarJo: Bret Stephens, Wall Street Journal, Feb. 10, 2014 — Last month the Palestinian ambassador to the Czech Republic blew himself up as he tried to open an old booby-trapped embassy safe.

The Boycott Mirage: Prof. Efraim Inbar, Israel Hayom, Feb. 6, 2014 — U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is threatening Israel with economic embargoes unless Jerusalem agrees to an American-drafted framework agreement with the Palestinians.

 

 

On Topic Links

 

Wildeman to UWSA: Hold Back on Israel Boycott: Dalson Chen, Windsor Star, Mar. 4, 2014

Terrorists Among Guests of Israeli Apartheid Week on Campuses: Joanne Hill, Jewish Tribune, Mar. 4, 2014

Antisemitic Event At SFSU Tomorrow – Simon Wiesenthal Center, Scholars for Peace in the Middle East, StandWithUs, ZOA West and AMCHA Initiative Highly Concerned: March 5, 2014

France and the BDS Movement: Michael Curtis, American Thinker, Feb. 23, 2014

U OF W STUDENTS PASS CONTROVERSIAL

REFERENDUM TO BOYCOTT ISRAEL                                               

Rebecca Wright                                          

Windsor Star, Mar. 2, 2014

 

Passage of a controversial University of Windsor student referendum to boycott Israel has sparked safety concerns for some Jewish students on campus, as well as complaints that have prompted an investigation of the vote by the school’s administration. “I think the referendum will just lead to a more hostile environment on campus,” said David, a Jewish University of Windsor student who only wanted to give his first name for safety reasons. The referendum asked students whether to support the global Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, a campaign aimed at creating economic sanctions against Israel and boycotting companies, products, academic institutions and any other group with ties to the Israeli state.

 

Rob Crawford, University of Windsor Students’ Alliance president, said 798 students voted in favour of the referendum and 585 students voted against it. The university has about 14,000 undergraduate students. Crawford said Saturday he didn’t want to comment on the controversial issue. “I need to wrap my head around everything,” said Crawford after the votes were tallied. He wasn’t available for comment Sunday.

 

David, 28, said the referendum’s passage means Jewish students on campus “better just keep low” because they can’t safely express their political views. “Unfortunately, the University of Windsor is not a safe place for Jewish students anymore,” said David. “I don’t think I am in immediate physical danger, but it’s just not an easy environment to be a Jew on campus, especially when you are a vocal supporter of Israel.”

 

The issue landed on a referendum ballot at the university after the student Palestinian Solidarity Group called for it in November. Mohammed Almoayad, president of group, said the University of Windsor has made history by passing the referendum. “Most other students unions that have passed it have been just through their council student representatives, and they get criticized for not being open and democratic and not allowing students themselves to say what they think about such a contentious issue,” Almoayad said Saturday…

 

David said there were students who were afraid to vote No to the referendum after an incident on campus Thursday that police described as a hate crime. Jake De Jong, vice-president of academic affairs for the student alliance, arrived at his office Thursday – the morning students were to begin voting in a referendum – to find it turned inside out. On a Support Our Troops flag hanging in his office, someone also spray painted the Star of David and the word Zionist. The act has received condemnation from Windsor police and the Windsor Jewish Community Centre.

 

University president Alan Wildeman released a statement about the referendum on Facebook Sunday. “We are receiving complaints that are raising questions about the referendum process,” said Wildeman. He said a full investigation is being launched to look into the complaints. “We’ve had a lot of concerns about the process and what the implications of the outcome of it might mean and we’re just going to look into those right now,” Wildeman told The Star Sunday evening. “Until such time that we’ve had a chance to really do an investigation, I’m not going to disclose any details.” Wildeman said the process going forward is for the UWSA council to discuss the outcome of the referendum. “And I don’t know exactly what the nature of that conversation will be,” said Wildeman. Wildeman said after “a lot of complaints” were expressed, he released the statement to let the community know the university is taking the complaints seriously. “The University of Windsor will be uncompromising in its commitment to continue to be a place that is welcoming and safe for all students,” Wildeman said in his statement. “The university will not tolerate any practices, by any member or group of its community, that target specific individuals or entities on the basis of ethnicity, nationality, religion, or any other personal characteristic.”

 

Leading up to the vote, David, who is a member of VOTE NO to BDS at UWindsor – a student group that campaigned against the boycott – said it was difficult for opponents to get their point across to students because their campaigning kept getting disrupted. “Any poster we put up, five minutes later it was gone,” said David. David said the vote was close and since it was 57 per cent of students who voted in favour of the boycott  and 42 per cent who voted against, there was not that much more support for the boycott… David said he planned to stay in Windsor to do his masters degree but has now reconsidered.

 

“I don’t want to be part of a university that endorses such a campaign and creates a hostile environment,” said David. “With this BDS campaign, you don’t feel safe if you have a kippah or even a T-shirt with Hebrew letters on it. Jewish students do not feel safe here anymore and we have to watch our backs when we walk around our campus.” Wildeman said further details about complaints about the referendum will be made public as the investigation unfolds.                                                              

                                                                                               

Contents
                                  

                                                           

‘ISRAELI APARTHEID’ – THE NEW FORM OF ANTI-SEMITISM       

John M. Duffy                                          

Jerusalem Post, Feb. 26, 2014

 

 

The Afrikaans word “apartheid” means “the state of being apart.”…Apartheid was a system of racial segregation, through legislation, by the National Party of South Africa between 1948-1994. Under this system of governing, political representation for non-whites in South Africa ceased in 1970. Furthermore, in that same year, non-whites were denied citizenship. This racist policy forced the majority of non-white people to live in, and become members of, 10 tribally-based bantustans, or “homelands.” The white-led minority, represented by the National Party, also segregated education, medical care, beaches and other public services. The native black people were considered inferior to the whites, and were exploited due to this inhuman policy.

 

Those who call Israel an “apartheid state” are morally, factually and historically inaccurate. Their mission is to delegitimize Israel. As a man of faith, I believe that the West Bank of the Jordan River (and frankly, much further east) is the land promised to the Chosen People according to the Bible. Yet, for the sake of argument, let us say that the West Bank is not part of the sovereign state of Israel, and is governed by the elected Palestinian Authority and/or Hamas. In this case, Israel’s policies cannot be compared to the racist internal policies of Apartheid South Africa. And for those Palestinians that are citizens of Israel, Israeli law guarantees equal rights, without distinction of race, creed or gender.

 

Proponents of so-called Israeli apartheid would attempt to counter by saying that the West Bank is, ultimately, Israeli-controlled. They would also say that Palestinians are scrutinized at military checkpoints, and would bring up the ID system, separate highways, the West Bank security barrier and other apparent forms of oppression. I do not deny that these exist. I do deny, though, that their root cause is racism, as was the situation in South Africa. The vast size and vigilance of the security forces in Israel is an exceptional financial burden on the economy – yet must exist for Israel’s very survival as a nation. Countless acts of terrorism have been perpetrated within Israel by bloodthirsty and brainwashed individuals who hide within crowds, and in hospitals and schools.

 

The Arab people must understand that the real reason they suffer these inconveniences – and, yes, at times, embarrassment – is that other Arabs carry out terror attacks that make them necessary. For these reasons, it is a sad – but sobering – fact that Israeli security forces are suspicious of the non-Jewish population. The separation of two groups in this case is not due to apartheid racism, but terrorism.

 

Finally, the citizens of North America shouldn’t throw stones when it comes to the question of occupation, segregation and racism, as our history reveals that we live in the proverbial glass house. We know that much of the continental United States was acquired through conquest – especially against the First Nations People. Indians, here, are still treated as second- class citizens (who live on segregated “Reservations”). We should, as a society, address very real racism at home before directing ignorant and uneducated comments toward Israel. In closing, I must add that Israelis give the best (and free) medical care in the entire Arab world to the Palestinian people. Friends, let us apply these truths to all accusers of Israel.                                                                                                                                                           

                                                                                       

Contents
                                  

SECRETARY SCARJO                                                                 

Bret Stephens                                                                                             

Wall Street Journal, Feb. 10, 2014

 

Last month the Palestinian ambassador to the Czech Republic blew himself up as he tried to open an old booby-trapped embassy safe. When police arrived on the scene, they discovered a cache of unregistered weapons in violation of international law. Surprise. Then the real shocker: After prevaricating for a couple of weeks, the Palestinian government apologized to the Czechs and promised, according to news accounts, "to take measures to prevent such incidents in the future."

 

As far as I know, this is only the second time the Palestinians have officially apologized for anything, ever. The first time, in 1999, Yasser Arafat's wife, Suha, accused Israel of poisoning Palestinian children. Hillary Clinton was there. Palestinian officialdom mumbled its regrets. In other words, no apology for the 1972 massacre of Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics. No apology for the 1973 murder of Cleo Noel, the U.S. ambassador to Sudan, and his deputy, George Moore. No apology for the 1974 massacre of 25 Israelis, including 22 schoolchildren, in Ma'alot. No apology for the 1978 Coastal Road massacre, where 38 Israelis, including 13 children, were killed.

 

And so on and on—straight to the present. In December, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas posthumously bestowed the "Star of Honor" on Abu Jihad, the mastermind of the Coastal Road attack, as "the model of a true fighter and devoted leader." Dalal Mughrabi, the Palestinian woman who led the attack itself, had a square named after her in 2011. In August, Mr. Abbas gave a hero's welcome to Palestinian murderers released from Israeli jails as a goodwill gesture. And Yasser Arafat, who personally ordered the killing of Noel and Moore, is the Palestinian patron saint.

 

I mention all this as background to two related recent debates. Late last month Scarlett Johansson resigned her role as an Oxfam "Global Ambassador" after the antipoverty group condemned the actress for becoming a pitchwoman for the Israeli company SodaStream. Oxfam wants to boycott Israeli goods made—as SodaStream's are—inside the West Bank; Ms. Johansson disagrees, citing "a fundamental difference of opinion in regards to the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions [BDS] movement." The second debate followed rambling comments on the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations from John Kerry at this month's Munich Security Conference. Israel, he warned, faced a parade of horribles if talks failed. "For Israel there's an increasing delegitimization campaign that's been building up," he said. "People are very sensitive to it. There are talks of boycotts and other kinds of things." So here is the secretary of state talking about the effort to boycott Israel not as an affront to the United States and an outrage to decency but as a tide he is powerless to stop and that anyway should get Israel to change its stiff-necked ways. A Secretary of State Johansson would have shown more courage and presence of mind than that.

 

But Mr. Kerry's failure goes deeper. How is it that Mr. Abbas's glorification of terrorists living and dead earns no rebuke from Mr. Kerry, nor apparently any doubts about the sincerity of Palestinian intentions? Why is it that only Israel faces the prospect of a boycott? When was the last time the U.S., much less the Europeans, threatened to impose penalties on Palestinians for diplomatic or moral misbehavior? In 2011 the Palestinians defied the U.S. by making a bid for statehood at the U.N.; then-U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice warned there would be "adverse negative consequences" for the Palestinians. Of course there were none, and the administration fought behind the scenes to make sure there wouldn't be any. Type the words "Kerry condemns Abbas" or "Kerry condemns Palestinians" into a Web search and you'll get that rare Google event: "No results found."

 

No wonder one Israeli government minister after another has taken to calling the secretary "insufferable," "messianic" and "obsessive"—and that's just what they say in public. The State Department has reacted indignantly to these gibes, but this is coming from the administration that likes to speak of the virtues of candor between friends. Its idea of candor is all one-way and all one-sided.

 

This is a bad basis for peace. If one expects nothing of Palestinians then they will be forgiven for everything. If one expects everything of Israel then it will be forgiven for nothing, putting the country to a perpetual moral test it will always somehow fail and that can only energize the boycott enthusiasts. It all but goes without saying that the ultimate objective of the BDS movement isn't to "end the occupation" but to end the Jewish state. Anyone who joins that movement, or flirts with it, is furthering the objective, wittingly or not. One useful function of an American diplomat is to warn a group like Oxfam that it is playing with moral fire. Instead, the job was left to Ms. Johansson. How wonderfully commendable. "One gorgeous actress with courage makes a majority," said Andrew Jackson—or something like that. We could do worse with such a person at State.

 

                                                                                                                Contents
                                       

           

THE BOYCOTT MIRAGE                      

Prof. Efraim Inbar                                                       

Israel Hayom, Feb. 6, 2014

 

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is threatening Israel with economic embargoes unless Jerusalem agrees to an American-drafted framework agreement with the Palestinians. While the merits of the current American diplomatic initiative are debatable, raising the possibility of a global refraining from economic interactions with Israel only feeds the boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign waged by Israel's enemies. Such a scenario, however, is very remote.

 

So far, BDS has not achieved much success; it constitutes a bearable nuisance. With the exception of isolated cases, Israeli exports are well received all over the world, particularly if they are competitive in quality and price. Due to wise economic policies gradually distancing Israel from its socialist past, the Jewish state has adapted well to a globalized economy. Israel has found ways to penetrate important markets and Israeli products are imported even by Arab states. Moreover, some Israeli-made products have unique qualities which make them indispensable. Israeli high-tech components have become part of the standard equipment of many global brands. Most Israeli businessmen hardly meet obstacles that are connected to political animosity toward Israel.

 

Numerous past failures of American diplomacy to bring peace in the Middle East have not created long-term adverse conditions for Israel, even if Israel was partly blamed for the lack of American success. Typical American optimism will eventually produce additional attempts at mediation. The linkage between American diplomatic efforts and the fate of Israeli economy is tenuous at best. The Israeli economy has experienced remarkable growth in the last two decades, mostly the result of the liberalization of its economy rather than auspicious political circumstances. Moreover, a survey of the international scene also indicates that the BDS impact is unlikely to change.

 

The U.S. is the number one export country for Israel. Attempts to boycott Israeli products are unlikely to be successful in America. The American public support for Israel has remained stable for the past two decades at over 60 percent. A variety of legislative steps have already been adopted to prevent a boycott of Israeli products or institutions. Even the current administration, which has been more than once at loggerheads with Israel on Middle East issues, firmly states its opposition to BDS.

 

Several Western European states, prime recipients of Israel's exports, are indeed displaying a growing anti-Israel bias, despite good bilateral relations. Many Europeans have lost the shame of being anti-Semitic as the Holocaust memories fade away. Therefore, boycotts of Israeli products are conceivable. Yet, as the euro crisis lingers, the purchase power of European countries is in decline. Its aging population is another factor in the decline of the Old Continent. Nevertheless, even in Europe there are strong pockets of pro-Israeli sentiments. The EU itself has announced that it has no plans whatsoever to boycott the Israeli economy. Israeli products originating beyond the Green Line are a different story, but only a small part of the Israeli economic activity is taking place in the settlements.

 

Israeli exports are gradually, albeit too slowly, being redirected to Asian markets. The future is in Asia. The large Chinese and Indian economies are growing fast, as are those known as the "Asian Tigers." The Asians are business-like and do not carry anti-Semitic historic baggage. Moreover, Israel is generally viewed in Asia as a successful country and a model to be emulated. This is true even in Central Asian states whose populations are largely Muslim.

 

At the same time, the political clout of the Arab world that is considered a natural ally of the Palestinians is decreasing. The Arab world is in the midst of a deep political and socio-economic crisis, full of failed states such as Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Libya. Egypt, the most important Arab state, faces tremendous domestic challenges and is allied with Israel against Islamic radicalism. Saudi Arabia is more concerned with the rise of Iran than the Palestinian issue, as is most of the Sunni world. Finally, the growing energy independence of the U.S. diminishes Arab leverage. Israel has overcome the boycott of the relatively stronger Arab world, and the BDS movement's attempts to harm the Israeli economy are unlikely to produce a different outcome.

 

Indeed, it takes a lot of imagination to see a concerted international effort to boycott the Jewish state. If Israel continues to make products with a clear qualitative edge at competitive prices, there will be many to buy them.

 

Kerry is simply echoing the arguments of the Israeli Left, which claims that an agreement with the Palestinians is the only way to escape international isolation. Moreover, irresponsible elements of the Israeli Left are asking for foreign pressure on Israel, realizing that they have no chance to change Israeli policies by the ballot box. The electoral decline of the Israeli Left makes it more desperate and less democratic when reaching the conclusion that "Israel has to be saved from itself" by the international community. Fortunately, Israel is not internationally isolated and most of the world does not care enough about the Palestinians to sacrifice the benefits of good bilateral relations with Israel. Israel has the leeway to decide what is good for itself.

 

Contents                                                                                                  

 

Wildeman to UWSA: Hold Back on Israel Boycott: Dalson Chen, Windsor Star, Mar. 4, 2014 —University of Windsor president Alan Wildeman has asked the university’s student association to delay its controversial endorsement of an Israel boycott.

Terrorists Among Guests of Israeli Apartheid Week on Campuses: Joanne Hill, Jewish Tribune, Mar. 4, 2014 —Don’t be deceived by the relative quiet surrounding Israeli Apartheid Week: this year, events on Canadian campuses will include terrorists and their supporters, among others.

Antisemitic Event At SFSU Tomorrow – Simon Wiesenthal Center, Scholars for Peace in the Middle East, StandWithUs, ZOA West and AMCHA Initiative Highly Concerned: March 5, 2014 —Tammi Benjamin of the AMCHA Institute sent me the following message this afternoon concerning tomorrow's anti-Zionist anti-Semitic hate-fest at San Francisco State University…

France and the BDS Movement: Michael Curtis, American Thinker, Feb. 23, 2014 —Over the last year, France has displayed courage and initiative in dealing with the threat of Islamic fundamentalism in African countries. 

 

 

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RETURN OF THE REPRESSED: FOR EUROPEAN ANTISEMITES [WHOOPS, “ANTI-ZIONISTS”], WHAT DARK FORCES ARE BEHIND THE HOLOCAUST? ISRAEL AND THE JEWS, OF COURSE!

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

 

                                           

Why Europe Blames Israel For the Holocaust: Post-1945 Anti-Semitism: Benjamin Weinthal, Jerusalem Post, Jan. 28, 2014— The acclaimed British novelist Howard Jacobson opened his speech at the B’nai B’rith World Center in Jerusalem last October with piercing sarcasm: “The question is rhetorical. When will Jews be forgiven the Holocaust? Never.”
Why Is Germany Telling Jews Where to Live?: Michael Freund, Jewish Press, Jan. 17, 2014 — With an impeccable sense of timing, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier arrived in Israel earlier this week, attended the funeral of Ariel Sharon, and then proceeded to browbeat Israel in public.
Belgian Legislator Says Zionists Bankrolled the Holocaust: Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu, Jewish Press, Jan. 30, 2014 — A Belgian legislator who last year told the Parliament Israel is using Islamic support to overthrow Assad now has taken the podium to charge, “The Holocaust was set up and financed by the pioneers of Zionism.”
Holocaust Historian Returns Hungarian Honor Over ‘Whitewash’: Richard D. Heideman, Times of Israel, Jan. 26, 2014 — Noted Holocaust historian Randoph L. Braham is returning a high honor granted him by the Hungarian state.

A French Clown’s Hateful Gesture: Sylvain Cypel, New York Times, Jan. 23, 2014 — Sixteen years ago, the leader of the far-right National Front, Jean-Marie Le Pen, deemed the Holocaust a “detail in the history of the Second World War.”
 

On Topic Links

 

Belgian MP Laurent Louis: When Will Belgium Support Assad in Face of "Greater Israel" Project?(video): Youtube, May 10, 2013 

Continental Drift: A Quarantine For the Sick Men of Europe: David Aikman, Weekly Standard, Jan. 13, 2014

Plan To Open Another Holocaust Museum in Budapest Faces Criticism—From Jews: Ruth Ellen Gruber, Tablet, Jan. 10, 2014

Holocaust Awareness Arrived Late in Western Europe: Manfred Gerstenfeld, Arutz Sheva, Jan. 26, 2014 

Leader of French Jewish Group Has a Plan for Countering Anti-Semitism: Downplaying Zionism: Nidra Poller, Tablet, Jan. 3, 2014 

 

 

WHY EUROPE BLAMES ISRAEL FOR THE HOLOCAUST:

POST-1945 ANTI-SEMITISM                                                  

Benjamin Weinthal                                                                    

Jerusalem Post, Jan. 28, 2014

 

The acclaimed British novelist Howard Jacobson opened his speech at the B’nai B’rith World Center in Jerusalem last October with piercing sarcasm: “The question is rhetorical. When will Jews be forgiven the Holocaust? Never.” However, there has been a shift in the underpinnings of anti-Semitism. Israel has become the collective Jew among the nations, as the late French historian Léon Poliakov said about the new metamorphosis of Jew-hatred. Jacobson was piggy-backing on the eye-popping insight of the Israel psychoanalyst Zvi Rex, who reportedly said: “The Germans will never forgive the Jews for Auschwitz.”

The anti-Semitic logic at work here is Europe’s pathologically guilt-filled response to the Holocaust, which, in short, is to shift the onus of blame to the Jews to cleanse one’s conscience. Two German-Jewish Marxist philosophers – Max Horkheimer and Theodor W. Adorno – coined an esoteric sociological term for what unfolded in post-Shoah Germany: Guilt-defensiveness anti-Semitism. On the one hand, Adorno and Horkheimer may come across as kitchen-sink psychology. On the other hand, the explanatory power behind anti-Semitic guilt animating hatred of Jews and Israel can provide a window into Europe’s peculiar obsession with the Jewish state. Europe is largely consumed with imposing discipline and punishment on Israel. How else to explain the efforts by the German government and fellow EU member states to label products from the disputed territories? The EU refuses to apply the same label system to the scores of other territorial conflicts ranging from China/Tibet to Turkey/Cyprus to Morocco/ Western Sahara.

The origins of Europe’s disturbing preoccupation with Israel can be traced to the late 1960s. The Austrian Jewish writer and Auschwitz survivor Jean Amery recognized that “anti-Zionism contains anti-Semitism like a cloud contains a storm.” The German-Jewish author Henryk M. Broder perhaps best captured the toxic mix of pathological Holocaust guilt with the desire to dismantle Israel. In an article he wrote in the early 1980s he told his contemporary Germans: “You’re still your parents’ children. Your Jew today is the State of Israel.”

Sacha Stawski, an expert on anti-Semitism in the German media, told The Jerusalem Post on Monday that “Israel-related anti-Semitism is probably the most common and most persistent form of anti-Semitism in all levels of society today.” Stawski, who is a German Jew and editor-in-chief of the media watchdog website Honestly Concerned, added: “Today it is no longer fashionable to hate Jews outright, but it is perfectly acceptable to debate about and to demonstrate against the very core of the Jewish state’s existence – in a way and with emotions unlike that about any other country.” The social-psychological theory articulated by Adorno and Horkheimer might, just might, provide a macro-level grasp of a pan-European epidemic that is fixated on turning Israel into a human punching bag.   

                                                             

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WHY IS GERMANY TELLING JEWS WHERE TO LIVE?          

Michael Freund

Jewish Press, Jan. 17, 2014

 

With an impeccable sense of timing, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier arrived in Israel earlier this week, attended the funeral of Ariel Sharon, and then proceeded to browbeat Israel in public. Speaking with reporters, Steinmeier accused the Jewish state of “damaging” the peace process by building homes for Jews in Judea and Samaria. And in a discussion with Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on the sidelines of Sharon’s interment, he pressed the premier to refrain from additional construction as this “could still disturb the process”. While I am not familiar with bereavement rituals in Germany, I assume they do not include insulting one’s hosts right after the burial service. And yet, while in Israel, Steinmeier apparently saw nothing wrong in doing just that: exploiting the opportunity to highlight a political issue regardless of how tasteless and unseemly it was to do so. This is not the kind of behavior one expects from a “friend,” is it?

 

But what is even more offensive about Steinmeier’s exploits is the German government’s historical amnesia, which has left officials bereft of any sense of irony regarding their position on the right of Jews to live in Judea and Samaria. After all, it was not even eight decades ago that Germany singled out Jews in the September 1935 Nuremberg laws, seeking to cast them out of civil society as a step towards “cleansing” German soil of their presence. Subsequently, in areas under German control, the right of Jews to live where they saw fit was severely restricted. One would think that in light of this dark chapter in their history, Germans would be extra careful about wading into such an issue and proclaiming where Jews can live, build or raise their families. But that has not been the case. Indeed, last summer it was widely reported that Berlin had decided to back a European Union initiative that singles out Jewish-owned businesses in Judea and Samaria. The move is aimed at targeting them for special treatment, which could include the application of unique labels of origin on products produced by Jews in the areas. Needless to say, goods made by Palestinian-run plants in the territories would not similarly be branded.

In an interview with Reuters last month, EU envoy to the Middle East Andreas Reinicke warned that if the latest round of peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians fails, the EU would speed up its plans to slap labels on Jewish-made goods from Judea and Samaria. The hypocrisy behind the labeling crusade is all the more apparent when one considers that no such campaigns are being contemplated for other “disputed territories”. Hence, there is no European demand to label Chinese products made in Tibet, Russian items manufactured in Chechnya or Spanish goods from Catalonia. It seems that only when matters involve the Jewish state do European liberals insist on such measures.

 

This is not merely duplicity, it is discrimination pure and simple. And in the case of Germany, such a stance is especially outrageous, and the government of Angela Merkel should be ashamed of itself for going along with it. Whatever one may think of the peace process and the two-state solution, it should be obvious that treating merchandise and construction differently simply because the person who owns the factory or built the house is a follower of Moses rather than Muhammad is an act of bigotry. And in light of its own ignoble record during the 20th century, Germany and its leaders have a special responsibility to be exceptionally sensitive to such issues, particularly when they relate to Jews. No one is suggesting Germany is planning a second Holocaust, but the country must show greater awareness regarding the painful irony at work here.

In 1936 a board game called “Juden Raus” (“Jews Out”) became popular throughout the Reich. Players would move figures representing Jews toward “collection points” from which they would be deported to the Land of Israel. “If you manage to see off six Jews,” the game instructed, “you’ve won a clear victory”. Sadly, Germany is once again playing a similar game, albeit with one difference. Whereas previously the aim was to send Jews away to Israel, now their goal is to compel us to leave parts of it. But I have a bit of news for Ms. Merkel and her colleagues: no one, especially not Germany, has the right to tell Jews where they can or cannot live. In 1945, the Jewish people crawled out of the ovens of Europe and succeeded in reclaiming our ancestral homeland. Regardless of what Berlin might think or say, we are not about to give any part of it away.                               

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BELGIAN LEGISLATOR SAYS ZIONISTS

BANKROLLED THE HOLOCAUST     

 

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu                                                                                   Jewish Press, Jan. 30, 2014

 

A Belgian legislator who last year told the Parliament Israel is using Islamic support to overthrow Assad now has taken the podium to charge, “The Holocaust was set up and financed by the pioneers of Zionism.” Intelligent people take these kinds of tantrums as harmless ignorance from a hate-mongering populist, but that is what they said in 1933. So speaking of the Holocaust, Belgium’s Laurent Louis, who has created his own Movement for Liberty and Democracy party after being expelled from the People’s Party, stood up in the Belgian legislator and performed the quenelle, the invention of Dieudonne, the so-called French comedian. The president of Belgium’s parliament condemned Louis’ theatrical hate. “I would like to reinforce my condemnation of these hateful acts,” Andre Flahaut said. The Belgian League against Anti-Semitism, a newly-established watchdog, pledged during its inaugural event to focus much of its activities on Louis — an independent member of the lower house of Belgium’s Federal Parliament. “We do not wish to offer Laurent a podium,” Isaac Franco, the league’s vice president, said earlier this week in Brussels. “But considering the tens of thousands of visitors to his website, we see he represents a threat that needs to be confronted.” Hate mongers who are elected to public office are a danger to the public. Louis has said that Israel was guilty of Nazi crimes against Palestinians, and last year he posed for pictures outside parliament while standing on an Israeli flag. Below is a video, with English sub-titles, of his speech in the Belgian parliament last May when he accused Israel of everything under the sun in order to promote a “Greater Israel.” According to Louis, that does not top at Judea and Samaria. It includes parts of Iraq, Jordan and Jordan. His speech started out with condemnation of Israel for conducting surveillance flights over Lebanon and then connected that with the IDF’s bombing Syrian trying to destabilize the country and use the Arab Spring rebellion to promote Greater Israel.

 

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HOLOCAUST HISTORIAN RETURNS HUNGARIAN                                  HONOR OVER ‘WHITEWASH’                                                                    

Times of Israel, Jan. 26, 2014

 

Noted Holocaust historian Randoph L. Braham is returning a high honor granted him by the Hungarian state.  The action is a protest against what he called the government’s falsification of Holocaust history and attempts to whitewash Hungary’s role in the Holocaust. The Hungarian state news agency MTI on Sunday quoted a letter from Braham, 91, in which the Bucharest-born scholar, a Holocaust survivor and expert on the Holocaust in Hungary, said he was handing back the Cross of the Order of Merit “with a heavy heart” following recent developments in Hungary. He also said he would no longer permit the Budapest Holocaust Memorial Center to use his name for one its research departments.

 

Braham, an emeritus professor at the City University of New York, wrote in the letter that: “The campaign of history falsification which aims to whitewash the (Miklos) Horthy era, has shocked me.” Horthy led Hungary into World War II as a Nazi ally. Braham said the “last straw” had been the decision by the government to erect a memorial in downtown Budapest to the 1944 German occupation of Hungary. This, he said, was a “cowardly attempt” to exonerate Hungarians from their own role in the Holocaust and confuse the issue by placing all blame on the Nazis. Hungarian Jewish leaders, historians and others have sharply criticized plans for the memorial.

 

“The events of 1944 are, to say the least, more complicated than a story of ‘bad’ Germans fighting ‘good’ Hungarians,” the prominent historian Krisztian Ungvary wrote in the HVG.hu news magazine. “Eichmann himself was thrilled by his experiences here, observing that the Hungarians must surely be descended from the Huns since nowhere else had he seen so much brutality ‘in the course of solving the Jewish question.’”

 

Hungary’s conservative government, headed by Prime Minister Viktor Orban, has designated 2014 as Holocaust Memorial Year, with a series of events and initiatives planned. In October, Hungarian Deputy Prime Minister Tibor Navracsics told an international conference that the country’s leaders recognized Hungarian involvement in the Holocaust and vowed that the state will combat anti-Semitism and racism. Hungary’s ambassador to the United Nations made a similar statement last week.

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A FRENCH CLOWN’S HATEFUL GESTURE                         

 

Sylvain Cypel  

               

New York Times, Jan. 23, 2014 

 

Sixteen years ago, the leader of the far-right National Front, Jean-Marie Le Pen, deemed the Holocaust a “detail in the history of the Second World War.” Today, a popular comic known as Dieudonné M’Bala M’Bala (his stage name is simply Dieudonné) claims “not to know, between the Jews and Germans,” who’s telling the truth — “but I have my own little ideas on the subject.” We know what those ideas are: Dieudonné invited onstage at one of his shows Robert Faurisson, a “theorist” of Holocaust denial, who argues that the extermination of the European Jews is a Jewish invention.

 

Dieudonné, who revels in stoking controversy while hiding behind ambiguity, recently came up with a rallying gesture for his supporters. He calls it the “quenelle” (literally, a dumpling, a French version of gefilte fish). The move consists of the right arm pointed straight down, which the left hand keeps from lifting — very like the repressed Nazi salute of Peter Sellers in “Dr. Strangelove.” Mr. M’Bala M’Bala claims this is not anti-Semitic but “antisystem,” a defiance of authority, but his true disciples have caught on, pulling quenelles in front of synagogues. On grounds that “inciting racial hatred” is illegal in France, the interior minister, Manuel Valls, decided to ban the comic’s shows, creating a furor. Canceling Mr. M’Bala M’Bala’s tour not only gave him free publicity, but it has also risked making him a victim of censorship.

 

At first glance, the Dieudonné affair seems a new form of anti-Jewish expression. Of course, it is. But it would be wrong to say that’s all that it is. French society has suffered from an economic and social crisis for three decades. Whichever party has been in power, the unemployment rate has hardly dipped below 8 percent since the 1980s; more than one in four young people are out of work. I recently returned to France, after six years working in the United States, to discover some unpleasant surprises. In “la France profonde,” a diffuse populism is stirring. Reminiscent of America’s Tea Party, this movement combines a nostalgic mind-set that everything “was better before” with a radical aversion to taxes and a hostility toward the detested European bureaucracy. According to a recent study, only 8 percent of French people espouse racial inequality, yet there is a palpable conviction that everything bad comes from outside: Brussels, globalization, immigration. Whatever the law says, the “freedom” to express racist, xenophobic and anti-immigrant views has reached new levels. Mr. Le Pen used to claim to “say out loud what the people think in private.” Lately, many have begun thinking out loud.

 

The Dieudonné affair is symptomatic of an insidious slide toward intolerance, but anti-Semitism is the least of it; racism and xenophobia manifest themselves more often as anti-Arab, anti-Muslim or anti-black. Last year, in Carpentras, a town notorious in 1990 for the desecration of Jewish graves there, swastikas were spray-painted on the headstones of French Muslim soldiers. Late in 2013, the minister of justice, Christiane Taubira, a black woman originally from French Guiana, was called a “monkey” by a National Front candidate in municipal elections; the same slur was repeated by a representative of the conservative Union for a Popular Movement, the mainstream opposition party.

 

Urban neighborhoods where poor African, Asian or Caribbean populations live have become increasingly ghettoized. In French political parlance, this is called a “failure to integrate,” or a “rise in communitarianism.” France has become a hotbed of tensions that has seen a steep rise in “ethnicist” views of society. It is not just Mr. M’Bala M’Bala who has flourished in this atmosphere; other comedians trot out the most hackneyed racial clichés. The phenomenon cuts across social class. Take Alain Finkielkraut, a professor of philosophy at the elite École Polytechnique: He recently published “L’identité malheureuse,” a book bemoaning the dilution of an eternal France about to be defiled by swarthy barbarians threatening to plunge “European civilization” into a multicultural bouillabaisse. Among the objects of his disgust: “Halal butcher shops and fast food.”

 

Mr. Finkielkraut’s sentiments echo those of Renaud Camus, a writer (not related to Albert Camus) who has denounced the “great replacement” of populations, which imposes on “the true rooted French” those who are not. Mr. Camus makes no secret of his admiration for Marine Le Pen, daughter of Jean-Marie and current leader of the National Front. Such ideas have even found resonance in the media, thanks to commentators like the political journalist Éric Zemmour, who laments the fate of the “white proletariat,” helpless before the “ostentatious virility of their black and Arab competitors seducing numerous young white women.” The worst came last fall with a campaign against France’s Roma people. The previous president, Nicolas Sarkozy, had already singled out this vulnerable population of 20,000 as a dangerous nuisance — despite the fact that the Roma constitute just 0.03 percent of the population. The interior minister, Mr. Valls, has now called for their expulsion. Well might we wonder about the integrity of a politician who defends Jews from Dieudonné’s quenelle while deporting Gypsies.

 

The son of a white mother and a black father, Mr. M’Bala M’Bala will continue to surf a wave created by the “competition of victims” in a country that is historically “guilty” twice over: toward the Jews, for its participation in the collaborationist Vichy regime, and toward its black and Arab citizens, for its colonial past. By calling Jews “slave traders,” Mr. M’Bala M’Bala plays a game of provoking the authorities’ squeamishness about anti-Semitism, even as other expressions of racism get a pass. When Dieudonné described Ms. Taubira as a “cheetah,” there was scarcely a stir. Unless things change, this deplorable clown has a bright future.

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Belgian MP Laurent Louis: When Will Belgium Support Assad in Face of "Greater Israel" Project?(video): Youtube, May 10, 2013 

Continental Drift: A Quarantine For the Sick Men of Europe: David Aikman, Weekly Standard, Jan. 13, 2014 — The year 1946 was vintage for Churchillian rhetoric, with two speeches that significantly affected the history of the West—and, indeed, the world.

Plan To Open Another Holocaust Museum in Budapest Faces Criticism—From Jews: Ruth Ellen Gruber, Tablet, Jan. 10, 2014 —The Hungarian author György Konrád is arguably one of the best-known child survivors of the Holocaust.

Holocaust Awareness Arrived Late in Western Europe: Manfred Gerstenfeld, Arutz Sheva, Jan. 26, 2014 — Manfred Gerstenfeld speaks to Prof. of Holocaust and Genocide Studies at Amsterdam University, Johannes Houwink ten Cate. For International Holocaust Remembrance Day.

Leader of French Jewish Group Has a Plan for Countering Anti-Semitism: Downplaying Zionism: Nidra Poller, Tablet, Jan. 3, 2014 —In mid-December, France’s President François Hollande held a reception at the Elysée palace in honor of the 70th anniversary of the CRIF, as the umbrella organization of French Jews is known. Hollande, whose delivery is often wooden and halting, was unusually at ease with his guests and made sure to note in his remarks that he was celebrating “by extension, all the Jews in France.”

 

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BDS B.S.: UNDERLYING ANTISEMITISM OF ACADEMIC BOYCOTTS IS CLEAR— A CONCERTED POLITICAL & LEGAL COUNTER-OFFENSIVE IS IN ORDER

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

 

                                           

Academic Boycott Event at UC Riverside: Tammi Rossman-Benjamin, Jan. 13, 2014—Dear Chancellor Wilcox, We are writing to you regarding an antisemitic event about to occur on your campus. 

MLA Resolution: What's it all About?: Michael C. Kotzin, Juf News, Jan. 17, 2014 — On Jan. 11, the Delegate Assembly of the Modern Language Association (MLA) meeting in Chicago voted 60 to 53 to support a resolution which urged the U.S. State Department “to contest Israel’s denial of entry to the West Bank by U.S. academics who have been invited to teach, confer, or do research at Palestinian universities.” 

Winning the BDS Battle: Dr. Jonathan Rynhold, Besa Center, Jan. 5, 2014 — The recent Association of American Studies (ASA) boycott of Israel is the latest chapter of a general campaign of boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) against the State of Israel.

Countering Illegal Boycotts of Israel: Richard D. Heideman, Washington Times, Jan. 17, 2014 — Educational, corporate and political organizations have stepped up efforts to isolate Israel through academic discrimination and economic blacklisting. Wrongly, organizations funded either directly or indirectly by U.S. taxpayers are advocating these boycotts.

 

On Topic Links

 

Scarlett Johansson Rejects Criticism of Her SodaStream Role: Debra Kamin, Times of Israel, Jan. 25, 2014

Let the BDS Movement Be a Warning: Dr. Ellen Wald, Frontpage, Jan. 23, 2014 

The MLA: How to Promote a Faltering Field by Attacking Israel: Peggy Shapiro, Jerusalem Post, Jan. 21, 2014                           

Open Letter To NYU's President: Why The American Studies Assn.'s Israel Boycott Makes Me Ashamed To Be An Alumnus: Richard Behar, Forbes, Jan. 14, 2014

 

ACADEMIC BOYCOTT EVENT AT UC RIVERSIDE                           Tammi Rossman-Benjamin                                                    

Jan. 13, 2014

 

Dear Chancellor Wilcox,

 

We are writing to you regarding an antisemitic event about to occur on your campus.  Although sponsored by two UC Riverside academic units, this event will not be a legitimate expression of academic freedom but rather a violation of it, as consistent with recent public statements by UC President Janet Napolitano, the American Association of University Professors, the American Association of Universities, and more than 180 University leaders across the country. 

 

It has recently been brought to our attention that the UCR College of Humanities and Social Sciences (CHASS) and Ethnic Studies Department are co-sponsoring a talk by Omar Barghouti entitled "Palestine's South Africa moment: relative justice, not relative humans," scheduled to take place this Tuesday, January 14, on your campus.  According to an email announcing the talk sent to the CHASS faculty and staff, student attendance at the event can be used for official course credit…

 

Although Omar Barghouti's talk is being sponsored by an academic division and department, and students can fulfill course credit for attending it, Barghouti himself is neither a university professor nor an academic.  So why is Omar Barghouti being brought to speak at UCR? For one reason alone: his politics.  Omar Barghouti is the most well-known and outspoken founder of the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel, the campaign from which all other academic boycotts of Israel derive, including the recent boycott of Israeli universities and scholars by the American Studies Association (ASA) and the resolution currently under consideration by the Modern Language Association (MLA).

 

It is important to point out that the sponsoring academic units — CHASS and the Ethnic Studies Department — have several faculty members who have publicly endorsed an academic boycott of Israel.  Indeed, of the eleven current UCR faculty members who have publicly endorsed the academic boycott of Israel, all but one are CHASS faculty…nine of the eleven (82%) UCR faculty members endorsing the academic boycott of Israel are members of, or cooperating faculty in the Ethnic Studies Department. (Astonishingly, one-third of the UCR Ethnic Studies Department's active faculty members, including the department chair, have publicly endorsed the academic boycott of Israel). Furthermore, two UCR faculty members — Feras Abou Galala and David Lloyd — are founding members of the U.S. Campaign for the Academic Boycott of Israel, and David Lloyd is also an organizer of the recent American Studies Association's academic boycott of Israel and a promoter of the boycott at the MLA convention last week.

 

It is abundantly clear that Omar Barghouti has been invited to UCR in order to promote the academic boycott of Israel, by UCR faculty who themselves seek to promote the academic boycott of Israel. As you know, ASA's boycott of Israeli universities and scholars has been roundly condemned by UC President Janet Napolitano, several academic associations including AAUP and AAU, and more than 180 other university leaders across the country, who have deemed the academic boycott of Israel a violation of academic freedom and antithetical to the very mission of the university.  Moreover, by singling out only one country in the world—Israel—for censure and abuse, while ignoring entrenched human rights abuses that are rampant throughout the Middle East, the movement exposes its antisemitic nature. Therefore, it is inappropriate, and indeed a violation of both university policy and state law, for CHASS and Ethnic Studies faculty to use the name and resources of the University of California to promote an antisemitic boycott of Israeli universities and scholars. We call on you to withdraw the university's sponsorship of the upcoming lecture by Omar Barghouti.

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MLA RESOLUTION: WHAT'S IT ALL ABOUT?                                      Michael C. Kotzin         

Juf News, Jan. 17, 2014

 

On Jan. 11, the Delegate Assembly of the Modern Language Association (MLA) meeting in Chicago voted 60 to 53 to support a resolution which urged the U.S. State Department “to contest Israel’s denial of entry to the West Bank by U.S. academics who have been invited to teach, confer, or do research at Palestinian universities.” To become adopted by the organization as a whole, the resolution will next have to be approved by the MLA’s Executive Council, scheduled to meet in late February, and if it passes it would face a vote of the total membership. While the resolution passed by the MLA’s Delegate Assembly thus has yet to be adopted, it still is a matter of concern and merits scrutiny. A useful way to approach it would be to apply a variation on the analytic terms first developed by medieval Kabbalists for reading the Torah – starkly different though the nature of these texts may be. 

 

This approach proceeds by considering four levels of meaning, the first of which deals with the literal meaning of the text. Looked at on its face, the resolution thus is simply calling for certain State Department action. This reading is in tune with the claim made by one of the drafters of the resolution in opening the discussion at the MLA session where it was voted on, who asserted that the resolution should be taken only in the narrow sense of coming to the support of fellow academics. But looked at only in this way, the resolution has hardly any value. It is hard to imagine the State Department truly “contesting” Israel’s application of its security policies regarding academic visitors – especially because, as research done by a newly formed group called MLA Members for Scholars’ Rights showed, the proponents of the resolution could identify only one person who might have faced the problem, which is cited as the purported basis of the resolution.

 

Looking then for other meanings to this resolution, we can next see it as a symbolic statement of solidarity with the Palestinian people, whom the drafters and supporters of the resolution clearly regard as an oppressed people. If the resolution is seen this way, what matters is not what it calls for directly but how it could be taken by the Palestinians. Their sense of grievance and victimhood was validated by the language of the resolution’s backers, who repeatedly spoke about Israel’s “racist” system and “apartheid” regime when they took the floor at the MLA meeting. Given that approach, this resolution and other statements like it can be seen as perpetuating the situation the Palestinians currently face, ultimately hardening both sides of the Israel-Palestinian conflict instead of advancing reconciliation and hastening the coming of the day when the Palestinians could have self-determination in a state of their own next to the state of Israel.

 

Moving on to the third level of meaning, the resolution can be seen as advancing a narrative which, as supporters of the resolution demonstrated, sees Israel as being a racist country practicing apartheid and using chemical weapons. As we dig deeper and get closer to the true meaning behind a resolution like this, we recognize that the rhetoric of its supporters is the rhetoric of the delegitimizers of Israel, of those who would marginalize the state for what they portray as its gross violations of human rights. This resolution may not go as far as the one passed by the members of the American Studies Association, whose right to call for an academic boycott was defended in an “emergency resolution” that failed to achieve consideration by the MLA.  But the resolution’s defenders talked about Israel with the same animosity as do the boycotters. The hostility of one speaker after another at the MLA session was tangible.

 

And this brings us to the resolution’s deepest, fourth level of meaning, to what Cary Nelson, Professor of English at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, calls “the elephant in the room.” That is anti-Semitism. Those of us who talk about these matters need to use the anti-Semitism charge with care – both because its seriousness needs to be respected and also because, in attempting to pre-empt consideration of this issue, Israel’s enemies are always quick to claim that Israel’s friends use the term indiscriminately when talking about any critic of any of Israel’s polices or actions. Though one of the supporters of the resolution at the MLA meeting attacked what he called the “rhetorical ploys” and “suppressive rhetoric” of Israel’s supporters, it is in fact the enemies of Israel who try to suppress exposure of the anti-Semitism that often suffuses their own rhetoric and approach. Thus, though we should be careful about using the term anti-Semitism, when anti-Semitic concepts can be identified within the verbal attacks on Israel, it is far from improper to point that out. So when one of the supporters of the resolution who took the floor during the Delegate Assembly meeting talked about financial contributions to political candidates in America by a “pro-Israel lobby,” which, he implied, corrupt American foreign policy, the anti-Semitic reverberations were surely there…                                                                                                                                                        [To Read The Full Article Click the Link—ed.]                                                                                            

                                                                                                           

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WINNING THE BDS BATTLE                                                     

Dr. Jonathan Rynhold                                                             

Besa Center, Jan. 5, 2014

 

The recent Association of American Studies (ASA) boycott of Israel is the latest chapter of a general campaign of boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) against the State of Israel. In examining BDS there are three key questions one needs to answer: Who and what is behind this? What is the extent of the threat? And how should Israel respond? The hardcore elements behind this campaign hail from the radical Left and are anti-Zionist – that is, they oppose the existence of Israel as a Jewish and democratic state. The good news is that the overwhelming majority of the public in the West oppose this position. The bad news is that the BDS hardcore recognizes this and focuses publicly on the issue of settlements and the “disproportionate” use of force by Israel in order to broaden their support. Indeed, they have had some success in this regard, as the consensus in the West feels that settlements are wrong or at least counterproductive.

 

One should not exaggerate the significance of the ASA boycott. The American public’s support for Israel over the Palestinians is overwhelming and despite their criticism of settlements, more American liberals sympathize with Israel than with the Palestinians. With the exception of the mainline Protestant Church in America, the real battlefield for BDS is in Western Europe; right now none of the boycotts have had much practical effect. However, it would be grossly misleading to take this as a sign that all is well, because the goal of society-led BDS is to create a hostile political environment; the material consequences are secondary. The struggle is over political legitimacy and symbolism. BDS is not going to bring Israel to its knees, but it has the potential to inflict substantial diplomatic, economic, and even military damage on Israel over time. If the current peace talks collapse, the Palestinians will seek to impose sanctions against Israel at the UN and in other international bodies. In addition, they will seek to have Israeli army officers tried at the International Criminal Court, a threat which could have negative consequences for Israeli deterrence. Society-based boycott initiatives play into this strategy by allowing the Palestinians to claim that there is widespread support for sanctions among Western publics.

 

How should Israel and its friends abroad respond to this threat? First, it is critical to divide up the responsibility appropriately. Government institutions should lead the interaction with foreign governments and international organizations like the UN. There are many things foreign governments can do to dis-incentivize society-led BDS, and the Israeli government is best placed to make the case. Indeed, it is already doing this. In terms of political symbolism, the government needs to remember two things. First, especially if the peace process collapses again, it is very important that Israel be viewed as willing in principle to agree to a two-state solution involving extensive territorial concessions in exchange for peace and security. Concern about BDS should not trump Israel’s vital and legitimate interests on issues such as refugees and security. However, pointing out Palestinian extremism or recalcitrance will not suffice to deflect BDS, as the retort will simply be that pressure is needed on both sides. Without Israeli credibility on this score, BDS has the potential to move from the leftist periphery to the liberal mainstream and beyond.

 

Second, a major bulwark against BDS is the fact that Israel is a democracy, not simply in terms of voting and majority rule, but also in terms of liberal rights such as freedom of speech and freedom of association. This is the critical point for most of those who support Israel in the West and it is a major weapon in the symbolic struggle over BDS. Therefore, attempts to combat BDS by passing laws that are seen to significantly curtail those democratic freedoms are entirely counterproductive. The latest initiative in this vein is a government-approved bill to restrict funding to NGOs that support BDS, which is opposed by the Attorney-General on the grounds that it will have a chilling effect on free speech. Such anti-Zionist NGOs need to be combatted, but this must occur within the context of democratic norms. Making such NGOs suffer by imposing financial penalties is populism that will boomerang and erode the resonance of Israel’s most important asset in the war over political symbolism. The supposed remedy will inflict more damage than the disease itself.

 

In terms of dealing with society–led BDS abroad, the lead must come from Israeli society and Israel’s friends in the West. The government should facilitate and cooperate, but not lead. For Israel to directly enter a fight with various pro-boycott organizations abroad simply raises their status. It will be viewed as inappropriate even by members of those organizations who oppose BDS. Israeli academics, trade unionists, and religious leaders should engage their foreign counterparts. In order to be listened to and have the required legitimacy and standing to act, it is critical to have the appropriate partner. In addition, it is crucial to recognize that local activists opposed to BDS are best placed to take the lead, since they know the environment best and have the appropriate standing. They also have the advantage of not being bound to defend every policy of the Israeli government. Being able to differentiate between the legitimacy of the State of Israel and the policy of this or that Israeli government is critical to ensuring widespread disdain for BDS. It is the government’s job to defend its policy; it is therefore unsuitable for the government to take the lead. Taking the lead will play into the boycotters’ hands by allowing them to make Israeli policy the main issue, about which Israelis and Israel’s supporters are often divided.

 

Since this division of labor was put in place by Israel and Jewish Diaspora organizations, the tide of BDS which rose significantly from 2005-2009 has been held back. However, there is now talk of creating a new governmental body to deal with BDS. This would be a mistake. It would shift the strategy from one based on the premise that “it takes a network to fight a network” to one based on the directives of Israeli politicians whose political priorities lie elsewhere. Witness reports of the Knesset committee discussion on the issue, where Right and Left vied to impose their ideological stamp on the issue. If the anti-BDS cause is blurred and subjugated to other concerns, and the means deployed to combat it are inappropriate and heavy-handed, things will go from bad to worse. If, however, the focus is the legitimacy of Israel itself, and the means employed to combat BDS are appropriate and sophisticated, then Israel is well positioned to defeat BDS efforts.          

                                                                                                Contents
                                  

COUNTERING ILLEGAL BOYCOTTS OF ISRAEL                               Richard D. Heideman                                                   

Washington Times, Jan. 17, 2014

 

Educational, corporate and political organizations have stepped up efforts to isolate Israel through academic discrimination and economic blacklisting. Wrongly, organizations funded either directly or indirectly by U.S. taxpayers are advocating these boycotts… At their recent conference in Chicago, the Modern Language Association debated the issue of boycotting Israel, reportedly narrowly defeating a resolution calling for a boycott, but adopting a resolution condemning Israel. A panel on Jan. 9 consisted of four panelists and a moderator all supportive of the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement against the state of Israel. One of the panel’s “experts,” Omar Barghouti, is a founding committee member of the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel and currently studies at Tel Aviv University in Israel. Mr. Barghouti once infamously wrote in the Electronic Intifada on Jan. 6, 2004, “We are witnessing the rapid demise of Zionism, and nothing can be done to save it . I, for one, support euthanasia.”

 

Boycott methodology was instituted immediately after the 1948 establishment of Israel in hopes of starving the nation of economic sustenance and her legitimate right to exist and to grow as a nation-state of the world. Previously, Congress enacted two pieces of legislation to discourage U.S. entities from participating in illegal boycotts against Israel or other countries. A 1977 amendment to the Export Administration Act of 1969 instituted criminal and civil penalties for such participation, and an amendment to the Tax Reform Act of 1976 instituted tax penalties for participation in illegal boycotts. Both were partially successful, and congressional intervention is needed now.

 

Outrageously, the federal government essentially subsidizes these academic boycotts by granting tax-exempt status for many organizations endorsing and encouraging the boycotts. For example, American Studies Association membership includes 2,200 colleges, universities, museums, foundations, societies and other institutions — many of which are tax-exempt — and their revenues often come from tax-deductible contributions. Actions should be taken to highlight — and preclude — charitable organizations from using tax-supported dollars or contributions to engage in illegal conduct. Economic boycotts of Israel by U.S. companies are also ongoing. In July 2010, a food cooperative with two locations in Olympia, Wash., voted to become the first grocery store in the United States to ban all Israeli-made items from its shelves. Just last month, the office-supply store Staples reportedly announced plans to cease sales of the popular new SodaStream products because the company’s manufacturing facility is located in Israel’s ancient Judea-Samaria area.

 

An important Supreme Court case shows how Congress should address this issue. In 1970, the Internal Revenue Service informed Bob Jones University, a private religious university, that its tax-exempt status would be revoked owing to its racially discriminatory policies. The Supreme Court ruled that the First Amendment’s religious-liberty guarantee does not prohibit the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) from revoking the tax-exempt status of an educational institution with practices contrary to a compelling state interest. Congress can instruct the IRS to revoke the tax-exempt status of institutions endorsing any Israeli boycott. Although some may argue such action would violate First Amendment “free-speech” rights, Supreme Court precedent clearly shows the First Amendment does not preclude the United States government from taking away tax-exempt status if a “compelling state interest” exists in so doing. Because academic boycotts are contrary to U.S. foreign-policy interests and, in effect, promote hatred and racism, a compelling state interest exists in acting to stop these anti-Israel boycotts by denying tax-exempt status to boycott proponents. In addition, Congress should create a private cause of action under the Export Administration Act for businesses directly impacted by an unsanctioned boycott. The federal government possesses the power to levy monetary damages in the form of fines against companies that comply with demands by boycott proponents, and the government should do so. The Export Administration Act should be amended to allow private parties harmed by boycotts to pursue punitive and compensatory damages in U.S. courts against the responsible party. It’s time to put a stop to taxpayer subsidization of boycott advocates, and it’s time to allow victims of these boycotts to pursue justice in a court of law. Illegal boycotts cannot be countenanced and must be stopped, and the offending companies and organizations must be held legally accountable.

                                                                        Contents                                                                                                                                                                                                               

Scarlett Johansson Rejects Criticism of Her SodaStream Role: Debra Kamin, Times of Israel, Jan. 25, 2014— American actress Scarlett Johansson released a statement Friday about the controversy surrounding her role as the first-ever brand ambassador of the Israeli company SodaStream, describing the firm as “building a bridge to peace between Israel and Palestine.”

Let the BDS Movement Be a Warning: Dr. Ellen Wald, Frontpage, Jan. 23, 2014 —Last year, a tiny academic organization, the Association for Asian American Studies, voted in favor of a resolution to boycott Israeli academic institutions.

The MLA: How to Promote a Faltering Field by Attacking Israel: Peggy Shapiro, Jerusalem Post, Jan. 21, 2014 —The Delegate Session of the Modern Language Association began with an hour-long session on the perils of falling enrollment in the MLA and reduced support for the humanities in general.  

Open Letter To NYU's President: Why The American Studies Assn.'s Israel Boycott Makes Me Ashamed To Be An Alumnus: Richard Behar, Forbes, Jan. 14, 2014 —Dear NYU President John Sexton, I’m a journalism graduate of New York University.

 

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CANADA’S UNITED CHURCH DEBATES ANTI-ISRAEL “REPORT”, IGNORING ISLAMIC ATTACKS ON CHRISTIANS

 

Boycott of Israeli Settlements Would Shatter United Church’s Credibility
On Friday, the United Church of Canada will vote on the Report of the Working Group on
Israel/Palestine Policy, which includes a church-wide boycott of goods from Israeli settlements.

Radical Elements in United Church Infected With Antisemitism, Minister Says
Antisemitism and racism are fuelling anti-Israel activism in a number of Christian denominations,
says United Church minister Andrew Love.  

The United Church Should Focus on Faith, not Activism
For the past several days, delegates of the United Church of Canada have gathered in Ottawa for
the church’s 41st General Council.

Attacks on Christians Sharpen with Government Collusion
If Muslim fanatics cannot tolerate moderate and secular Muslims, why should they be expected
to accept those who belong to other faiths?

On Topic Links
________________________________________________________________________


BOYCOTT OF ISRAELI SETTLEMENTS WOULD
SHATTER UNITED CHURCH’S CREDIBILITY

Shimon Fogel
The Globe and Mail, Tuesday, Aug. 14 2012,

 
On Friday, the United Church of Canada (UCC) will vote on the Report of the Working Group on Israel/Palestine Policy, which includes a church-wide boycott of goods from Israeli settlements. That report, sadly, has failed to grasp what’s really at stake in this decision. A boycott of Israel launched in any form would put the United Church outside the genuine peace movement and the Canadian consensus on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. As hurtful as this would be to the Jewish community, it pales in comparison to the long-term damage it would cause to the reputation of one of Canada’s foremost voices in civil society: the United Church itself.
 
Granted, the church has removed a disturbing statement from the original report that the deepest meaning of the Holocaust was the denial of human dignity (and posits a moral equivalence with the challenges faced by Palestinians). Yet the report still calls on the UCC to “acknowledge with deep regret” its past policy of asking the Palestinians to recognize Israel as a Jewish state. What this move would achieve is anyone’s guess. But the notion that the Palestinians can continue to deny Israel’s legitimacy as a Jewish state (as it was explicitly affirmed by the UN’s 1947 partition resolution) only relieves the Palestinian leadership of the duty to reconcile with its neighbour – and with reality.
 
No less disturbing is the report’s thesis that the occupation is “the primary contributor to the injustice that underlies the violence in the region,” that settlements are the chief obstacle to peace, and that Israel alone must be pressed to resolve the conflict. Put aside that the Arab-Israeli conflict began in 1948 (decades before settlements existed) and that the violent repression in Syria and throughout the region has nothing to do with Israel. On the issue of settlements, we have history as our guide.
 
In 1982, Israel withdrew every last settler from the Sinai after securing a peace agreement with Egypt. Both countries have since benefited from peace. In 2005, Israel withdrew every settler from Gaza as a unilateral gesture without a peace agreement. Civilians in southern Israel have since been targeted by some 10,000 missiles and mortars from Hamas and other terror groups in Gaza.
 
History is clear. Israeli withdrawals must include peace and security guarantees signed by Israel’s neighbours, as per international law under UNSC Resolution 242.
 
It’s astonishing that Israel’s removal of thousands of settlers from the Sinai and Gaza is not mentioned once in the UCC’s report – despite “settlements” appearing no fewer than 54 times. That “terrorism” is mentioned once and “Hamas” and “Hezbollah” receive no mention at all speaks volumes to the report’s lack of balance. Indeed, it reflects a minimization of key obstacles to peace (including anti-Jewish incitement, continuing terrorism, and yes, Hamas – the archetype of Arab rejection of the Jewish state).
 
Peace will come only through negotiations and painful concessions by both Israelis and Palestinians. This is the consensus among most Canadians and across the political spectrum (the NDP, under both Jack Layton and Thomas Mulcair, firmly rejected boycott, divestment and sanctions efforts). No doubt this reflects the majority of UCC members, who would hope to play a constructive role in supporting the legitimate aspirations of both sides. Should a small minority of boycott advocates succeed, the greatest resulting injury would not be to the relationship between the UCC and the Jewish community, but rather between the UCC and its own congregants.
 
The framework for resolving the Arab-Israeli conflict described above is also upheld by the mainstream peace movement, which is engaged in a myriad of projects to bring both sides together. To contribute to this movement, one need not refrain from criticizing particular Israeli policies (as Israeli peace activists can attest). One must simply commit to advancing peace through balance, mutual obligations and reconciliation – rather than coercion and the singling out of one side for blame.
 
Unfortunately, were the UCC to launch a church-wide boycott, it would alienate one of Canada’s most prominent churches from this important cause. In so doing, the church would not only be turning away from Canada’s Jewish community, but ultimately from the UCC’s own tradition as a leading voice in civil society for fairness, moderation and peace.

 

Shimon Fogel is CEO of the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs, the advocacy arm of the Jewish Federations of Canada.(Top)
 

RADICAL ELEMENTS IN UNITED CHURCH
INFECTED WITH ANTISEMITISM, MINISTER SAYS

Joanne Hill
Jewish Tribune, August 7, 2012

 

Antisemitism and racism are fuelling anti-Israel activism in a number of Christian denominations, says United Church minister Andrew Love.  Love, the spiritual leader of Grace Saint Andrew’s United Church in Arnprior, has been trying to counter the calls for a boycott of ‘settlement’ goods by the United Church of Canada’s (UCC) Working Group on Israel/Palestine Policy and other regional church bodies. He said he is troubled by the way radical elements within the Christian church focus on demonizing Israel while minimizing the Palestinians’ role in the conflict and ignoring human rights abuses against Christians throughout the world.
 
“I have wracked my brain trying to understand why Israel gets such a disproportionate measure of our moral criticism,” said Love. “I keep coming back to a very difficult conclusion, and that is that there remains an undercurrent of antisemitism in our church, and that disturbs me.
 
“Conversations I’ve been a part of and what I’ve observed have led me to the conclusion that, if you scratch the surface of our tolerant, liberal church, you find the reality of racism.” He clarified, “I’m speaking of the United Church but this same debate has infected the United Methodist Church, the Presbyterian Church and the Anglican communion, where Israel has received a disproportionate amount of attention.”…
 
The United Methodist Church (US) voted in May against divesting from three companies that do business with Israel. However, according to the JTA, the church passed motions “opposing Jewish settlements in the West Bank” and “recommending the boycott of products manufactured in settlements.”  In July, the Presbyterian Church (USA) also voted against divestment as well as against using the term “apartheid” to describe Israel’s treatment of Palestinians. However, according to the church’s website, it voted in favour of a boycott of “all products made by enterprises in Israeli settlements on [occupied] Palestinian land.”
 
In a more positive move, the Episcopal Church (US) passed a resolution in July calling for “intense teaching, learning and advocacy around the conflict” and defeated a motion to endorse boycott and divestment…, It also rejected an official study of two documents: A Moment of Truth, by Kairos Palestine and, Steadfast Hope: The Palestinian Quest for Just Peace, by Presbyterians Concerned for Jewish, Christian and Muslim Relations. Both documents, wrote Baumgarten, “have been criticized by some…as theologically problematic in their portrayal of Judaism.”
 
“There’s no question in my mind that…it stems from an antisemitic, racist view…. The infection – and I use that word deliberately – the infection of political radicalism in our church is going to take a lot of work to counterbalance.”…
 
He will be distributing [in Ottawa] the results of a recently completed national survey co-sponsored by Faithful Witness and the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA).  “The survey revealed an overwhelming gap between what is recommended and what the ‘view of the pew’ is,” said Love. “The overwhelming majority do not want to see the United Church adopt a boycott of any kind, nor do they want the church to take sides on the issue. They want us to keep that credible voice as peacemakers, as bringing folks together.”
 
If the UCC ignores the will of the majority of its churchgoers and votes in favour of a boycott, Love said, “I don’t think it’ll have any impact on the ground: we simply don’t have the economic muscle; we’re not buying a lot of wine from the Golan Heights. What it will do is add to the feeling of isolation that many in Israel are feeling and [lead] to further division and resentment. It will do nothing to aid in our understanding and dialogue or our ability to work out solutions.”
 
An anti-Israel boycott will also ruin the relationship between the UCC and the Jewish community, he warned.  “As a church that shares a common Abrahamic root with Jews and Muslims, the moment we create a policy, it has very real interfaith dimensions and implications. And the interfaith implication today will be the destruction of our relationship with the Jewish community in Canada at the national level.”
(Top)


THE UNITED CHURCH SHOULD FOCUS ON FAITH, NOT ACTIVISM
National Post Editorial Board,

National Post, Aug 16, 2012.

 
For the past several days, delegates of the United Church of Canada have gathered in Ottawa for the church’s 41st General Council. This meeting, held every three years, will see a new church moderator chosen, as well as the adoption of policies that will guide the church until the next General Council in 2015. As was widely expected, the council has chosen to put politics ahead of matters of faith. Indeed, it is getting harder to tell where the church ends and a budding left-wing political party begins.
 
On Tuesday, the church voted to “categorically oppose” the Northern Gateway pipeline. That hardly seems like a religious matter. Nor do other resolutions to be voted on, including the church’s position of raising the eligibility for Old Age Security or Canadian mining operations in Asia.
 
But nowhere is this truer than with regard to the United Church’s stance on Israel. Over the years, there have been attempts by individual congregations or groups within the church to initiate boycotts of Israeli exports, academics or cultural figures. Fortunately, these have failed. However at this General Council, for the first time, the church is considering adopting a policy on Israel’s conflict with the Palestinians that would include declaring the occupation of Palestinian territory a primary cause of the ongoing conflict. The motion also calls for a selective boycott of Israeli goods — specifically, those actually produced in the settlements that Israel has established on Palestinian land.
 
This is notable, for three reasons. First, the church leadership specifically commissioned the report in which these recommendations are found, so one cannot say — as church defenders have in the past — that the desire to single out Israel for opprobrium is coming from a fringe element of the church. It’s coming from the top. And second, unlike previous efforts, this call for an Israeli boycott has a good chance at passing — it passed a first vote on Wednesday, and will be studied further (and possibly refined) before being voted on again on Friday.
 
Finally, it is not as though the church is putting forth similar resolutions about other countries in the world. There is no resolution suggesting a boycott of Egyptian goods in solidarity with the Christian Copts who are being ruthlessly persecuted in that nation. There is no resolution targeting China for its brutal repression of minorities such as the Uiguars and Tibetans. Only Israel — a democracy that fully recognizes the equal rights of people of all genders and sexual orientations and religions — is being officially chastised at the church convention. In fact, with the exception of apartheid-era South Africa, Israel is the only country the church has ever selected for such an official boycott and dressing down. Why the special treatment?
 
It is not as though the United Church doesn’t have its own structural issues calling out for attention. Membership has fallen by half over 50 years. Financial support has likewise plummeted. Many congregations struggle to pay their bills. United Church faithful, both clergy and worshippers, are increasingly elderly.
 
The church would be wiser to focus its energies on addressing the problems in its own backyard, rather than alienating Jews — and members of its own congregation alike — with its selective outrage over Israel. The church certainly won’t improve its standing by turning itself into a left-wing political activist group….The United Church should turn away from these politicized endeavours, and seek to rebuild itself by focusing on the day-to-day issues of faith and family with which its individual members struggle. Rejecting the Israel boycott resolution on Friday would be a good place to start.
(Top)
 

ATTACKS ON CHRISTIANS SHARPEN WITH GOVERNMENT COLLUSION
Khaled Abu Toameh
Gatestone Institute, August 10, 2012

 
If Muslim fanatics cannot tolerate moderate and secular Muslims, why should they be expected to accept those who belong to other faiths?
 
As all eyes were turned this week toward Sinai, where Muslim fundamentalists killed 16 Egyptian border guards while they were having the Ramadan fast-breaking meal, Christian families were being forced out of their homes in the village of Dahshur, 40 kilometers south of Giza.  Hundreds of Christians fled their homes after being attacked by their Muslim neighbors, who also targeted a church and Christian-owned businesses in the village.
 
The anti-Christian violence was described as the worst since Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohamed Morsi was elected as president in June.  But Morsi did not find time this week to visit Dahshur to see for himself how hundreds of helpless Christians were being forced out of their homes.
 
Instead, he and his security and military commanders rushed to Sinai as soon as they heard about the massacre that was perpetrated against the border guards.  The Egyptian authorities did not even hesitate to use heavy weapons against the Muslim terrorists in Sinai. For the first time since the signing of the peace treaty with Israel, Egypt sent military helicopters and armored vehicles to attack the terrorists in Sinai.
 
But when it comes to dealing with Muslim terrorists who have been targeting Christians in a number of villages and cities throughout Egypt over the past few months, the Egyptian authorities have endorsed a lenient approach. In fact, the authorities, according to human rights activists, have chosen to turn a blind eye to the plight of the 14-million strong Christian community….
 
In the past two years, tens of thousands of Christians have fled Egypt, mainly due to the rise of Muslim fundamentalists to power. Recurring attacks on Christian families and property and failure of the Egyptian authorities to employ a tougher policy against the fundamentalists have led many Christians to reach the conclusion that they have no future not only in Egypt, but in other Arab countries where radical Muslims are rising to power.
 
Christian fears are not unjustified. Muslim fanatics will continue to target Christians because they consider all non-Muslims "infidels." If the fanatics cannot tolerate moderate and secular Muslims, why should they be expected to accept those who belong to other faiths? While the number of Christians in the Arab world continues to decline, Israel remains the only country in the Middle East where they feel safe and comfortable….
(Top)

 

On Topic

BARBARIE ET ANTISÉMITISME EN OCCIDENT, MASSACRES ET ISLAMISME AU MOYEN-ORIENT

 

COMMENT LA BARBARIE S'INSTALLE EN FRANCE

Ivan Rioufol

upjf.org, 4 juin 2012

[Le 4 juin dernier], les mouvements antiracistes n’avaient toujours pas fait connaître leurs réactions à l’information, connue depuis hier : samedi soir, à Villeurbanne (Rhône), trois jeunes juifs portant la kippa ont été agressés par une dizaine d’individus qui les ont frappés à coups de marteau et de barre de fer. Hospitalisées, les victimes sont ressorties avec cinq jours d’interruption de travail. Les agresseurs, décrits comme "d’origine maghrébine" par l’AFP, étaient toujours en fuite, lundi à midi. Selon le député du Rhône (PC) André Gerin, de telles agressions se multiplient à Villeurbanne. L’élu communiste ajoute : "Oui, la gangrène intégriste existe bel et bien dans des quartiers de France. Se diffuse ce poison de l‘obscurantisme religieux qui nourrit l’antisémitisme et le racisme anti-blancs. Arrêtons de faire l’autruche".

Pour Richard Prasquier, président du Conseil représentatif des institutions juives de France (Crif) : "Tout se passe  comme si Mohamed Merah (ndlr : le tueur de Montauban et de Toulouse, assassin de sept personnes dont trois enfants juifs exécutés dans leur école) était devenu une sorte de modèle, un exemple à suivre". Dans le mois qui a suivi le drame, le Service de protection de la communauté juive a recensé 140 actes anti-juifs, soit le tiers des actes comptabilisés pour l’année 2011. La barbarie s’installe en France, dans l’indifférence des belles âmes et autres "humanistes" de salons.

Le premier ministre, Jean-Marc Ayrault, a condamné, lundi, un acte "très grave", d’une "violence insupportable". Martine Aubry  parle d’un "acte ignoble". Ces indignations sont la moindre des choses. Mais il serait temps pour la gauche au pouvoir de se poser des questions sur les sentiments anti-juifs et plus généralement anti-français qui s’observent depuis longtemps dans les cités. Il serait temps qu’elle s’interroge sur ces mouvements prétendument antiracistes qu’elle protège en dépit de leur parti pris et des hiérarchies qu’ils opèrent dans les minorités à défendre. Il serait temps pour le PS qu’il confronte sa politique communautariste, destinée à s’attirer massivement l’électorat musulman, avec le risque de consolidation du multiculturalisme.

Le député (UMP) Jacques Myard relate, ce lundi, qu’à Sartrouville (Yvelines), il a été accueilli sur le marché des Indes par une jeune adulte : "Vous n’avez rien à faire ici, ici c’est un terre arabe, c’est une terre appartenant aux musulmans, ce n’est pas une terre française ; vous êtes des racistes, des sionistes,  vous devez partir". Quand Manuel Valls demande à ses services une étude "sur ce qui a dysfonctionné" dans l’affaire Merah, il serait plus utile encore que le ministre de l’Intérieur se penche sur les mécanismes et les raisons qui ont créé des Français qui détestent la France et qui insultent, par leur intolérance et leur fanatisme, la démocratie laïque.

VINGT ANS D'ILLUSIONS SUR L'ISLAMISME

Daniel Pipes

juif.org, 4 juin 2012

Adaptation française: Anne-Marie Delcambre de Champvert

Les grandes lignes de la politique du gouvernement des États-Unis, de tout autre gouvernement et de l'establishment en général envers l'islamisme ont été fixées le 2 juin 1992, lorsque le secrétaire d'État- adjoint pour les Affaires du Proche-Orient et du Sud asiatique, Edward P. Djerejian, a prononcé un discours majeur, "Les États-Unis et le Moyen-Orient dans un monde en mutation", au Meridian International House, à Washington, DC [District de Columbia (NDLT)]. Après quelques phrases inutiles [littéralement «après quelques raclements de gorge ». Les phrases d'introduction qui ne sont pas nécessaires sont appelées des «raclements de gorge pour s'éclaircir la voix»(NDLT)] sur l'effondrement de l'Union soviétique, la guerre du Koweït, et le conflit israélo-arabe, Djerejian a prononcé ce qu'on a appelé «la première déclaration importante du gouvernement américain sur l'islam fondamentaliste» et, en un peu plus de 400 mots, esquissé une politique qui a été suivie à avec une constance remarquable au cours des 20 années suivantes.

Djerejian a commencé par faire remarquer que «le rôle de la religion [au Moyen-Orient] est devenu plus manifeste, et que beaucoup d'attention est accordée à un phénomène diversement qualifié d'islam politique, de renaissance islamique, ou de fondamentalisme islamique.» Il a salué l'islam « comme l'une des grandes religions du monde», tout en notant que son héritage culturel «était un riche héritage dans les sciences, les arts et la culture et dans la tolérance envers le judaïsme et le christianisme ». Djerejian a ensuite analysé le mouvement islamiste: « Dans les pays du Moyen-Orient et d'Afrique du Nord, nous … voyons des groupes ou des mouvements qui cherchent à réformer leur société en gardant les idéaux islamiques. Il y a une diversité considérable dans la façon dont ces idéaux sont exprimés. Nous ne découvrons aucun effort international monolithique ou coordonné derrière ces mouvements. »

Cette diversité est très bien, poursuit-il, aussi longtemps qu'il y a « un véritable dialogue politique entre le gouvernement d'une part et les personnes, les partis et d'autres institutions d'autre part. Ceux qui sont prêts à prendre des mesures spécifiques en vue d'élections libres, en créant un système judiciaire indépendant, en faisant prévaloir la primauté du droit, en réduisant les restrictions sur la presse, en respectant les droits des minorités, et en garantissant les droits individuels nous trouveront prêts à reconnaître et à soutenir leurs efforts, tout comme ceux qui vont dans la direction opposée nous trouveront prêts à parler franchement et agir en conséquence. … Ceux qui cherchent à élargir la participation politique dans le Moyen-Orient, trouveront donc en nous un soutien, comme nous l'avons été ailleurs dans le monde. »

En effet, Washington «a de bonnes et fructueuses relations avec les pays et les peuples de toutes les religions à travers le monde, y compris un grand nombre dont le système de gouvernement est fermement établi sur les principes islamiques. » Mais le gouvernement américain est « plein de méfiance envers ceux qui voudraient utiliser le processus démocratique pour arriver au pouvoir, seulement pour détruire ce même processus en vue de conserver le pouvoir et la domination politique. Alors que nous croyons au principe «une personne, une voix» nous ne soutenons pas «une personne, une voix, une seule fois.»

Djerejian a invoqué ensuite la règle générale, à savoir que la préoccupation est politique et non religieuse. Selon ses propres mots: «la religion n'est pas un facteur déterminant – positif ou négatif – [pour juger] de la nature ou de la qualité de nos relations avec d'autres pays. Notre différend concerne l'extrémisme et la violence, le refus, l'intolérance, l'intimidation, la coercition et le terrorisme qui, trop souvent, l'accompagnent. »

Ce qui nous amène à prendre cette citation de l'ensemble de son discours: « le gouvernement des États-Unis ne considère pas l'islam comme le prochain « isme » affrontant le monde occidental ou menaçant la paix du monde. C'est une réponse trop simpliste à une réalité complexe. La guerre froide n'est pas en train d'être remplacée par une nouvelle concurrence entre l'Islam et l'Occident. "

Commentaire: Djerejian émet ici une hypothèse fondamentalement fausse, à savoir que les islamistes peuvent être des agents dans l'élargissement de la participation politique. Cette illusion reste, deux décennies plus tard, l'espoir constant du Département d'État et de la presque totalité de l'establishment. Non, disons-le en deux mots, une idéologie profondément anti-démocratique ne peut pas engendrer la démocratisation. Les islamistes ont repris cet espoir et, immanquablement, y compris le droit, dans la campagne pour la course aux élections présidentielles en Égypte, de se présenter comme des démocrates.

Mais ils ne le sont jamais.

BOYCOTT ANTI-ISRAËL DU MAGASIN NAOT

Corinne Lissoos

Canadian Jewish News, 31 mai 2012

Dans l'édition du 31 mai 2012 du Canadian Jewish News, en page 12, se trouve une lettre percutante de vérité soumise par Mme Corinne Lissoos, propriétaire du magasin NAOT qui est la cible du groupe PAJUstes depuis plus d'un an et demi sur la rue St-Denis.  Ce groupe est appuyé par le député israélophobe Amir Khadir. Mme Lissoos avait jugé important de réfuter certaines faussetés préjudiciables à son commerce et à la défense de la cause d'Israël. Vous trouverez ci-dessous le texte complet de la lettre de Mme Lissoos:

 

C'est avec étonnement que, le 26 avril dans le CJN, j'ai lu l'article signé Elias Levy et intitulé Les combats pro-Israël d'Éric Duhaime. Je trouve très louable l'engagement de M. Duhaime envers Israël. Mais concernant les boycotteurs de la rue St-Denis à Montréal, M. Duhaime semble très mal informé, car l'article lui fait dire que ces mêmes boycotteurs auraient subi une éclatante défaite. Rien n'est plus éloigné de la vérité.

Je suis propriétaire de la boutique de chaussures NAOT, sise rue St-Denis et cible des boycotteurs anti-Israël depuis plus d'un an et demi. Mon commerce, à l'instar de plusieurs voisins, est sérieusement affecté par ce harcèlement. Des emplois ont même été perdus. Chaque samedi durant les heures censées être les plus favorables aux affaires, de nombreux passants évitent ce secteur dès qu'ils aperçoivent les immenses banderoles noires et les nombreux drapeaux palestiniens.

On peut donc se demander pourquoi M. Duhaime, de même que le CIJA auquel il semble associé puisque deux de ses salariés sont l'objet de ses louanges ferventes, se félicitent autant d'une telle situation. En réalité, c'est précisément à partir du moment où, en juin 2011, les boycotteurs se sont mis à cibler exclusivement ma boutique que le CIJA commença à répandre la fable prétendant qu'une "victoire" aurait eu lieu sur la rue St-Denis contre les boycotteurs anti-Israël. Crier "victoire" au moment où les boycotteurs commencent à s'acharner contre une boutique offrant une quasi-totalité de produits fabriqués en Israël me paraît une manière bien bizarre de soutenir la cause d'Israël. C'est comme si on voulait nous abandonner aux mains des boycotteurs qui nous harcèlent.

Heureusement, plusieurs Québécois, dont une grande majorité de non Juifs, prêtent loyalement main-forte à ma boutique et aux autres commerces affectés. Ces Amis Québécois d'Israël, comme ils se nomment eux-mêmes, nous aident de diverses manières, entre autres en diminuant le potentiel de nuisance des boycotteurs, puis en lançant des appels à acheter dans ma boutique et celles de mes voisins. Il serait injuste et contreproductif de maintenir leur contribution sous silence.

Il est donc important de rappeler que la campagne de harcèlement des boycotteurs anti-Israël continue bel et bien ses ravages sur la rue St-Denis, et j'espère qu'à ce sujet l'article citant M. Duhaime n'induira pas le public en erreur.

Corinne Lissoos
Propriétaire, boutique Naot

QUAND LE MYTHE DEVIENT RÉALITÉ : NAQBA, L’IRAN NUCLÉAIRE ET LA DÉLÉGITIMATION D’ISRAËL

NAQBA : LA CATASTROPHE « PALESTINIENNE »

Guy Millière

dreuz.info, 24 mai 2012

Le 15 mai dernier, les « Palestiniens » célébraient le jour de la naqba, la catastrophe qu’est censée avoir été la création de l’État d’Israël. Nombre d’Arabes israéliens l’ont eux-mêmes célébré, montrant ainsi qu’ils sont infectés par le même venin que les Arabes de Judée-Samarie et de Gaza. Des Juifs israéliens, ce qui est beaucoup plus grave, et montre que le venin peut susciter dans certains esprits dérangés une haine de soi, ont eux aussi participé aux célébrations. Bien sûr, des journalistes européens ont parlé de la naqba, en reprenant à leur compte la narration « palestinienne ».

Ce qui doit être dit à tous ces gens est qu’ils contribuent à une imposture. Le mot naqba a été utilisé au Proche-Orient pendant une longue période pour désigner le redécoupage régional effectué lors du démantèlement de l’empire ottoman, et qui a séparé la Syrie, placée sous Mandat français, de la Syrie du Sud placée sous Mandat britannique sous le nom de Mandat palestinien.

Ce fait a été rappelé récemment par Steven Plaut dans un article appelé Happy Nakba Day, et Steven Plaut cite le livre qui décrit la naqba : c’est le livre fondateur du nationalisme arabe, The Arab Awakening de George Antonius. Cette conception de la naqba est spécieuse, mais à l’époque, Israël n’existait pas, et le « peuple palestinien » n’avait pas encore été inventé.

Ce qui doit être dit à tous ces gens qui parlent de naqba aujourd’hui est qu’ils sont, de surcroît les acteurs et les participants d’une falsification de l’histoire. Non seulement il n’y a jamais eu d’État palestinien dans la région, aussi loin qu’on remonte dans le temps, tout comme il n’y a jamais eu de « peuple palestinien » avant que ce « peuple » ne soit inventé au milieu des années 1960, mais les choses ne se sont pas passés comme elles sont décrites par les adeptes de la « cause palestinienne ».

En 1920, quand le Mandat palestinien a été institué pour (re)créer un foyer national juif au Proche-Orient, les terres du Mandat palestinien étaient peu peuplées. Un État arabe a été très vite créé (dès 1921), sur plus des trois quarts des terres du Mandat, État confié à l’un des héritiers de la dynastie chérifienne chassée de La Mecque, mais peuplé de la plus grand part des Arabes de la Syrie du Sud. Cet État est l’État arabe palestinien : qu’il soit gouverné par une dynastie monarchique venue de la péninsule arabique, bien que sa population ne soit pas venue de la péninsule arabique en même temps que lui est un problème qui ne concerne pas Israël.

Sur le territoire restant, les Britanniques ont favorisé l’immigration arabe, freiné l’immigration juive, y compris pendant la période où le Troisième Reich exterminait les Juifs en Europe, et confié le pouvoir spirituel à un fanatique antisémite qui travaillera ensuite pour Hitler, Amin Al Husseini. Cela a fait des Britanniques des complices de la Shoah et du nazisme, même s’ils l’ont combattu par ailleurs, et cela a fait d’eux les créateurs d’une situation perverse.

En 1948, quand le plan de partition du territoire restant a été voté, puis quand, les dirigeants juifs acceptant le plan de partition, Israël a vu le jour, nul dirigeant juif n’a chassé le moindre habitant arabe. Il y a eu une guerre d’extermination menée par les pays arabes de la région contre les Juifs et contre Israël. Cette guerre a échoué, comme les guerres ultérieures lancées contre Israël. On doit le souligner : Israël n’est pour rien dans ces guerres et en a été la victime.

Quand la guerre d’extermination a été enclenchée lors de la (re)naissance d’Israël, ce sont les dirigeants arabes (dont Amin Al Husseini, revenu dans la région) qui ont demandé aux Arabes vivant en Israël de partir, le temps que les Juifs soient tous tués. Les juifs n’ont pas été tous tués. Les Arabes qui sont partis l’ont fait parce que les dirigeants arabes le leur ont demandé, ou à cause de la guerre. Leur situation est de la responsabilité des dirigeants arabes et pas de celle d’Israël, qui considère, à juste titre, que partir pour ne pas être éclaboussé par le sang juif que des armées doivent venir verser, est se faire complice des armées concernées.

On doit le dire : Israël n’étant pour rien dans les guerres dont Israël a été la victime, Israël n’est pour rien dans les conséquences de la guerre déclenchée contre Israël, et donc dans le départ de milliers d’Arabes vivant sur le sol israélien en 1948-49. Le problème des « réfugiés » est un problème arabe que le monde arabe aurait dû résoudre depuis longtemps comme d’autres problèmes du même genre ont été résolus ailleurs sur terre.

C’est aussi un problème entretenu par les instances internationales : sans l’existence de l’UNWRA, il n’y aurait pas des « réfugiés » depuis plus de trois générations, il n’y aurait pas de « réfugiés » dont le nombre s’est multiplié par dix en soixante ans, et il n’y aurait pas de « réfugiés » n’ayant eu à prouver que deux années de résidence en Israël pour devenir « réfugiés ».

Le problème des « réfugiés » n’est pas une seule seconde de la responsabilité d’Israël. On peut rappeler qu’Israël a dû gérer un problème de réfugiés qui n’intéresse personne hors d’Israël : celui des réfugiés juifs chassés du monde arabe. L’invention du « peuple palestinien » et celle de la « cause palestinienne », plutôt que de contribuer à la paix et à la prospérité, a transformé les « réfugiés » arabes et les Arabes de Judée-Samarie et de Gaza en otages de la volonté du monde arabe de détruire Israël et d’exterminer les Juifs. Les otages sont devenus instruments : on leur lave le cerveau et on en fait des auteurs d’attentats et d’autres formes d’assassinat.

On doit le préciser : la prise d’otage et la transformation des otages en instruments ne sont pas la faute d’Israël, mais celle du monde arabe, celle des instances internationales qui ont créé l’UNWRA, celle des pays occidentaux qui financent le tout. Si on voulait parler en termes de catastrophes, on pourrait dire qu’il y a eu une succession de catastrophes dans la région : les décisions britanniques, l’imprégnation du monde arabe par des idées haineuses qui l’ont conduit vers l’impasse, la volonté répétée de détruire Israël et d’exterminer les Juifs, la création des « réfugiés » arabes et la perpétuation de ce statut de « réfugié », l’accroissement du nombre des « réfugiés » en question de génération en génération, l’invention du « peuple palestinien » et de la « cause palestinienne ».

Le seul fait historique qui n’ait pas été une catastrophe dans la région, strictement le seul, a été la (re)naissance d’Israël. Que les « Palestiniens » protestent contre le seul fait historique qui n’ait pas été une catastrophe dans la région et continuent à être utilisés comme des instruments de haine génocidaire est répugnant et consternant. Que nombre d’Arabes israéliens protestent eux aussi montre que l’abcès de fixation créé par l’invention du « peuple palestinien » et de la « cause palestinienne » devra se trouver vidé de sa substance.

Qui dira que la « cause palestinienne » est une imposture, et qui rappellera haut et fort comment et pourquoi le peuple palestinien a été inventé ? Que des Juifs israéliens protestent contre l’existence de leur propre pays donne la nausée. Que des journalistes européens reprennent à leur compte la narration « palestinienne » montre que nous vivons dans une époque sordide où les leçons de l’histoire ne sont plus enseignées, et où le pire peut aisément recommencer.

AVEC L’IRAN, GARDONS UN ŒIL SUR LA BOMBE

Laura Kam

fr.ejpress.org, 24 mai 2012

Le temps et l’ampleur accordés au sujet d’une éventuelle attaque militaire israélienne contre l’Iran par les médias, les équipes d’analystes, la blogosphère et les gouvernements du monde entier (sans oublier les analyses aussi abstraites que dépourvues d’intérêt sur qui parmi les ministres israéliens ou les anciens hommes politiques est pour ou contre une frappe militaire) ont détourné l’attention de la seule question vraiment importante que la communauté internationale et le public en général devraient se poser au sujet de l’Iran : que deviendrait le monde si l’Iran réussi son pari de fabriquer une arme nucléaire ?

Au vu des six résolutions du Conseil de sécurité des Nations unies exhortant l’Iran à mettre fin à son programme d’enrichissement nucléaire, il est clair que les puissances du monde partagent une vision unanime : la quête iranienne de l’arme nucléaire ne contribue point à la paix et à la sécurité mondiale, et ferait du monde un endroit considérablement moins sûr. Pour eux, il est évident que pendant des années, l’Iran a menti de façon délibérée à leur agence de surveillance nucléaire, l’AIEA, et que leur prétendu programme nucléaire civil est tout sauf « pacifique ».

La nature théologique de l’État islamiste, son soutien au terrorisme, sa violation des droits de l’homme, et son refus depuis une décennie de négocier une solution à la question nucléaire ne font qu’aggraver l’immense malaise mondial que nous ressentons tous au moment où les sanctions internationales contre l’Iran se durcissent. Quelles seraient les conséquences d’un Iran nucléaire au niveau international ?

L’existence d’une arme nucléaire en Iran aurait très certainement des effets immédiats sur des pays tels que l’Egypte, la Turquie et l’Arabie saoudite, car elle les inciterait à développer leur propre arme nucléaire, et déclencherait une course à l’armement nucléaire dans une région du monde qui deviendrait de plus en plus instable et qui revêt une importance capitale pour les intérêts des puissances économiques de la planète. 

Les efforts régionaux et internationaux constants de l’Iran pour élargir son influence (notamment ses incursions diplomatiques et économiques en Amérique latine et en Afrique) continuent d’être un facteur de déstabilisation. Partout dans la région, de l’Afghanistan à Gaza, les Iraniens sont en train d’armer et de former des groupes radicaux et fondamentalistes dont l’objectif est d’établir des régimes forts qui imposeraient l’Islam comme impératif national, sans laisser place au libre choix. Gaza et le sud du Liban sont des exemples “réussis” du développement de ce genre de régimes. 

Dans d’autres pays du monde, l’Iran soutient des organisations terroristes telles que les cellules du Hezbollah (de l’Amérique latine au Moyen-Orient en passant par l’Asie de l’Est), le Djihad islamiste palestinien (au moins jusqu’à récemment), le Hamas, ainsi que des groupes militants en Irak, tels que le Kata'ib Hzezbollah, la Brigade du jour promis et Asa'ib Ahl al-Haq. L'anée dernière en Afghanistan, le Pentagone a remonté la piste d’un achat de rockets par les Talibans jusqu’à l’Iran. Ces roquettes augmentent la force de frappe de ces combattants contre des cibles de l’OTAN et des États-Unis. L’année dernière également, les États-Unis ont confirmé l’existence d’un lien entre l'Iran et Al-Qaida, et ont accusé Téhéran de faciliter les opérations d’Al-Qaida visant à faire passer clandestinement de l’argent et des personnes depuis son territoire jusqu’aux sièges des leaders de ce groupe terroriste en Afghanistan et au Pakistan.

Ces groupes ont fait des victimes américaines, britanniques, australiennes appartenant aux forces multinationales. Parallèlement au programme nucléaire, le programme, divers et ambitieux, de développement de missiles balistiques de l’Iran continue d’avancer, selon des experts internationaux et des représentants des gouvernements d’Occident. En effet, on s’accorde à dire que l’Iran possède maintenant des missiles capables d’atteindre certaines parties de l’Europe et de la Russie. 

Selon les experts, ce n’est qu’une question de temps avant que toute l’Europe soit à la portée des missiles iraniens. Déjà en 2010, le secrétaire de la défense de l’époque, M. Robert Gates, affirmait que l'Iran est capable de lancer une attaque contre l'Europe, au moyen de "dizaines ou même de centaines" de missiles en une seule frappe. Un programme de missiles dont la portée est constamment augmentée, associé à l’existence d’une arme nucléaire, représente un scénario stratégique cauchemardesque pour l’Occident. Et, comme si ce n’était pas déjà assez, à maintes reprises et de façon ferme, le régime iranien a menacé de détruire Israël en le qualifiant de “cancer” qui doit être “extirpé”.

Téhéran a souvent utilisé les dialogues du P5 +1 (les Etats-Unis, la Chine, la Russie, la France, le Royaume-Uni et l’Allemagne) pour gagner du temps et réussir à développer son programme nucléaire. De nombreux experts et hommes politiques craignent que l’Iran, une fois de plus, ne fasse la même chose cette fois-ci. Les leaders du P5+1 et leurs négociateurs ne devraient pas oublier cette inquiétante habitude iranienne lorsqu’ils entament les négociations tant attendues avec les Iraniens à Bagdad, et lorsqu’ils en évalueront les résultats. Ils ne devront accepter aucune tactique iranienne visant à gagner du temps.

Nous espérons et prions tous pour l’adoption d’une solution négociée qui satisfera toutes les parties concernées. Mais compte tenu des expériences du passé avec l’Iran, le monde ne peut pas se permettre d’être naïf. La pression diplomatique et économique forte et toujours croissante sur le régime islamique est tout à fait justifiée, et c’est sur cette justification que le monde devrait rester concentrer.

DÉLÉGITIMATION ET BOYCOTT D’ISRAËL

Victor Perez

juif.org, 21 mai 2012

« L’Afrique du Sud envisage d’imposer la mention «Palestine» ou «Territoires occupés» sur les produits provenant des colonies israéliennes ». Telle est la décision (1) du Ministre du Commerce Rob Davies de « permettre aux Sud-Africains qui ne soutiennent pas Israël, mais soutiennent les Palestiniens, d’identifier ces produits». En fait, complète Macdonald Netshitenzhe, directeur pour la politique et la législation commerciale au ministère sud-africain du Commerce, « la loi sur la protection du consommateur impose de ne pas induire en erreur sur la provenance exacte du produit. Si par exemple c’est un vin de Bordeaux, il ne peut pas venir de Bretagne ».

Si nul ne contestera ici les droits du consommateur, cependant il est étonnant de voir que le seul pays à subir cette discrimination est encore une fois l’état juif. Nul ne réclamera par exemple la suppression Made in China sur les produits fabriqués au Tibet. Ni sur ceux manufacturés au Kurdistan turc et définis comme produits par la Turquie. Deux exemples parmi tant d’autres qui ne préoccupent point l’Afrique du Sud, pays ayant vécu dans sa chaire la ségrégation ethnique, ni sa défense des droits des consommateurs si chère à son ministère.

 Une préoccupation exclusive donc en faveur des « Palestiniens, occupés, violentés, pillés ». Tout le mantra nécessaire à une condamnation systématique et automatique du peuple israélien. Une propagande assurant que la « Palestine » est un très vieux pays, Jérusalem une ville sainte musulmane, et les autochtones de la Judée, de la Samarie et de la bande de Gaza les « Palestiniens » d’origine.  Un ‘’peuple’’ et un ‘’pays’’ qui n’ont pourtant comme passé que l’histoire construite par la propagande depuis 1967. Une intoxication intellectuelle reprise en chœur par les pays occidentaux pour de basses raisons mercantiles et qui se rachètent en réclamant, au nom des droits de l’homme, la sécurité pour Israël.

Quant à reconnaître que ce pays est celui du peuple juif, cela est une toute autre affaire ! Affaire qui arrange bien les affaires du Hamas. Mahmoud Zahar, l’un des dirigeants de ce groupe de criminels, a donné une interview (2) à Euronews. Dans celle-ci il pose une série de questions au bloc occidental.« La première est la suivante : notre terre, avant 1948, était-elle un territoire juif ? S’agissait-il de la terre d’Israël ? Ou était-elle plutôt la terre des musulmans arabes palestiniens ? ». « Deuxième question : un retour des Juifs, trois mille ans plus tard, pour établir un état sous prétexte que leurs ancêtres vivaient ici, est-ce que c’est cela que l’Occident appelle le droit au retour ? Acceptez-vous le droit de la politique au retour ? Dans ce cas, retournons donc en Espagne puisque nous l’avons quittée en 1492 ».

Le Fatah de Mahmoud Abbas se contente pour une paix juste et durable, en version anglaise uniquement, des « frontières de 1967, d’Al-Qods comme capitale et d’une solution juste pour les réfugiés » au sein de « l’entité sioniste » évidemment. Le Hamas, lui, n’a pas ces pudeurs. Que fera alors l’Occident si ce groupe prend les commandes de l’Autorité palestinienne et diffuse, matraque SA propagande en l’accompagnant de menaces implicites mais suffisamment précises à son égard ? A savoir, celle de Juifs « colonisateurs de terre arabes » y compris celles attribuées par l’ONU en 1947.

Après combien d’années, pour le bien de l’humanité, sera-t-il alors conseillé puis exigé de l’Etat d’Israël de se transformer en un état binational et, en conséquence, au peuple juif de retrouver sa condition d’apatride ? Après combien d’années, suite à son refus de cette ‘’solution peine de bon sens’’ agrée par la communauté internationale, seront prises des mesures de rétorsions à l’encontre de cet état évidemment « colonisateur, génocidaire et pilleur » ?

Si l’on en juge par les gains ‘’palestiniens’’ obtenus par la propagande actuelle depuis une quarantaine d’années auprès du bloc occidental et au vu de la lâcheté de celui-ci, guère plus longtemps qu’il n’a fallu pour reconnaître internationalement la « Palestine » et les « Palestiniens ». La ‘’justice’’ n’est pas un vain mot en cette contrée !