Wednesday, November 30, 2011

DOV BER: Israeli Government Shows American Jews its Middle Finger

As reported first at the Jewish Channel, the Israeli government has commissioned a series of ads designed to discourage its citizens from  becoming romantically inter-tangled with American Jews. The danger, see, is that Israeli citizens might choose to settle with their new spouses in a place that has neither terrorists nor Taliban Rabbis. If too many Israelis take this route Israel will be short on cannon fodder, and the demographic advantage already enjoyed by the more fecund Palestinians will increase. 

But, of course, the ads can't say "Stay in Israel or the Arabs will take over"; instead they say "Marry a stupid American and your kids will be Goyim."

Here's one heavy handed example:

If this spot has a villain, isn't it the clueless grandparents? Why are they shocked that their grandchild knows what Christmas is? She looks to be about 7 years old. Is this the first time Grandma and Grandpa have ever spoken to her? Where have they been for the last 7 years? Why haven't they told her about Chanuka? And when their son first married the shiksa, did they honestly expect the product of that union to grow up without encountering the big feast of Christendom? My kids know what Christmas is. Don't yours? Has the world ceased to spin on its axis?

In another advert, a woman called Dafna seems constitutionally unable to explain Yom Hazikoron to her boyfriend:

Again, the Israeli is the one who comes off looking bad. Dafna's guy seems to be the sort of person who can comprehend the significance of Yom Hazikoron. Why doesn't she try explaining it to him?

In a third, a cute little kid can't get his distracted father's attention until he calls him Aba.

Perhaps if father and son weren't so out of touch, the kid would know how to gethis father's attention.

Anyway, the spots, as a whole are disgusting. They insult the intelligence of Israeli citizens, while also assailing the character of American Jews. That's a fine way of thanking us for our financial and political support.

PARODIES: Some fine satires of these despicable ads have been posted on YouTube. See them after the jump

All star basketball player Kobe Bryant needs a little miracle for this coming season. Maybe thats why hes hanging around the JCC!

The Yeshiva Boys Choir - "Those Were The Nights (of Chanukah)"

Chaim Yisrael - Yisgadal Viyeskadesh In Rechovet Chol Chamoed Sukkos 5772

Baruch Hagever - Shloime Gertner Live in Chicago with Mesamechai Leiv Orchestras

Bentzi Marcus and Dovid Dachs - 'Yedid Nefesh'

New Music Video Being Released in Advance of Rubashkin Documentary
A new music video shows exclusive footage from Rubashkin's Game Plan, the long awaited documentary film focusing both on the Rubashkin case and dual reaction of anger and solidarity from the Jewish community following the harsh sentence handed down in the case.

The song, titled Yedid Nefesh, features an original composition by Danny Finkelman performed by Bentzi Marcus of 8th Day and Dovid Dachs. Yedid Nefesh features footage of the events that led up to the miscarriage of justice that is known as the Rubashkin case: Rubashkin's first arrest on charges of violating immigration and child labor laws, the largest immigration raid ever conducted in the United States at the Postville, Iowa Agriprocessors plant and Sholom Mordechai Rubashkin's second arrest on charges of financial fraud, resulting in an unusually harsh sentence of twenty seven years in prison. 

The words "yedid nefesh" literally mean "a friend of the soul", a description that literally defines Sholom Mordechai Rubashkin, as he treated thousands of people he never even met as true friends, both in the way he conducted his business and his personal life. Yedid Nefesh focuses on the outrage, indignation and tremendous unity that has swept through the entire Jewish community in response to the case, which was perhaps, unknowingly, Sholom Rubashkin's ultimate Game Plan.

Egyptian Presidential candidate: 'Only' 60% of Jews are evil

I mentioned this video in an earlier post, but this paranoid rant ought to be spread far and wide. This will make you really happy that the US government is promoting 'democracy' in Egypt, forced out Hosni Mubarak and is in the process of forcing out Tantawi and the army. Democracy isn't just about free elections and it can't just be imposed immediately on people who have no idea what it's about. This video - Tawfik Oqasha is a serious candidate for the Presidency of Egypt - will show you why.

Let's go to the videotape.

Statement by Ambassador Ron Prosor, Permanent Representative of Israel to the UN 29 November 2011

This is a must see. This is the speech given in the UN General Assembly on Tuesday by Israel's ambassador to the United Nations, Ron Prosor. The occasion was the General Assembly's annual bash Israel fest, which takes place every year on the anniversary of the UN resolution approving the partition of Britain's Palestine Mandate in 1947.

Mr. President,
A great Jewish sage once wrote, “The truth can hurt like a thorn, at first; but in the end it blossoms like a rose.”
His words came to my mind today. His insight could really benefit many in this hall.
It takes a well of truth to water the seeds of peace. Yet, we continue to witness a drought of candor in this body’s discussion of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. On this historic day, real facts in the General Assembly remain few and far between.
For any who have been here on November 29th before, today is déjà vu. Some of you may have noticed that some minor changes have been taking place in the Middle East lately, but any changes in this body’s resolutions condemning Israel are very, very rare.
Indeed, it didn’t take a creative writer to craft the language in these resolutions. The exact same text is copied and pasted, year after year – much of it dating back five decades.
The account we heard today is one-sided. It is unilateral. It is unjust. And it is unhelpful. It presents a distorted and impartial version of history.  It transforms the cause of Palestinian self-determination into a deliberate attempt to denigrate, defame, and delegitimize the State of Israel.
The political dynamics in this body are sadly predictable. Every November, the leaves change color in New York, but the automatic anti-Israel majority never changes its votes.
Each and every responsible member of the international community that affixes its seal of approval on this exact same set of resolutions – which are irrelevant at best, and damaging at worst— should do a little soul searching. Is this the message that you want the General Assembly to send to the world?
Mr. President,
Let me take a moment to remind this Assembly about what actually occurred on this day 64 years ago – and in the days that followed.
On November 29, 1947, the United Nations voted to partition then British-Mandate Palestine into two states: one Jewish, one Arab. Two states for two peoples.
The Jewish population accepted that plan and declared a new state in its ancient homeland. It reflected the Zionist conviction that it was both necessary and possible to live in peace with our neighbors in the land of our forefathers.
The Arab inhabitants rejected the plan and launched a war of annihilation against the new Jewish state, joined by the armies of five Arab members of the United Nations.
One percent of Israel’s population died during this assault by five armies. Think about that price. It would be the equivalent of 650,000 dying in France today, or 3 million dying in the United States, or 13 million dying in China.
As a result of the war, there were Arabs who became refugees. A similar number of Jews, who lived in Arab countries, were forced to flee their homes as well. They, too, became refugees.
The difference between these two distinct populations was – and still is – that Israel absorbed the refugees into our society. Our neighbors did not.
Refugee camps in Israel gave birth to thriving towns and cities. Refugee camps in Arab Countries gave birth to more Palestinian refugees.
We unlocked our new immigrants’ vast potential. The Arab World knowingly and intentionally kept their Palestinian populations in the second class status of permanent refugees.
In Lebanon for many years and still today, the law prohibits Palestinians from owning land – and from working in the public sector or as doctors and lawyers. Palestinians are banned from these professions.
In Kuwait, the once significant Palestinian population was forcibly expelled from the country in 1991. Few remain.
In Syria, thousands of Palestinians had to flee refugee camps in Latakia last August when President Assad shelled their homes with naval gunboats.
In the vast majority of Arab Countries, Palestinians have no rights of citizenship. It is no coincidence that the Arab World’s responsibilities for the “inalienable rights” of these Palestinians never appear in the resolutions before you.
Mr. President,
The basic question underlying our conflict for 64 years has not changed. That question is: has the Arab World – and particularly the Palestinians – internalized that Israel is here to stay and will remain the Nation-state of the Jewish People?
It is still unclear whether they are inspired by the promise of building a new state, or the goal of destroying an existing one.
Two months ago, President Abbas stood at the podium in this very hall and tried to erase the unbroken and unbreakable connection between the Jewish people and the Land of Israel.
He said the following:
“I come before you today from the Holy Land, the land of Palestine, the land of divine messages, ascension of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and the birthplace of Jesus Christ (peace be upon him).”
This was not an oversight. It was not a slip of the tongue. It was yet another deliberate attempt to deny and erase more than 3,000 years of Jewish history. The Arab leaders from those two nations that sought peace have offered a different message.
For example, in 1995, King Hussein came to the United States and said (quote): “For our part, we shall continue to work for the new dawn when all the Children of Abraham and their descendants are living together in the birthplace of their three great monotheistic religions.”
In 1977, President Sadat came to Israel’s Knesset and quoted this verse from the Koran: “We believe in God and in what has been revealed to us and what was revealed to Abraham, Ismail, Isaac, Jacob, and the tribes and in the books given to Moses, Jesus, and the prophets from their lord.”
President Sadat and King Hussein spoke of THREE monotheistic religions, not ONE or TWO.
Mr. President,
The resolution that gives the 29th of November significance – General Assembly resolution 181 – speaks of the creation of a “Jewish State” no less than 25 times. We still do not hear Palestinian leaders utter the term.  
The Palestinian leadership refuses to acknowledge Israel’s character as a Jewish state. You will never hear them say “two states for two peoples”. If you ever hear a Palestinian leader say “two states for two peoples”, please phone me immediately. My office has set up the equivalent of a 911 number in the event of such an unprecedented occurrence.
Palestinian leaders call for an independent Palestinian state, but insist that the Palestinian people return to the Jewish state. This is a proposition that no one who believes in the right of Israel to exist could ever accept.
The idea that Israel will be flooded with millions of Palestinians is a non-starter. The international community knows it. The Palestinian leadership knows it. But the Palestinian people aren’t hearing it. At this very moment, the gap between their perception and reality remains the major obstacle to peace.
Let me repeat that: the so-called right of return is and will remain the major obstacle to peace. It is not settlements. It is not the laundry list of baseless accusations launched against Israel in today’s resolutions.
I’ll repeat it again: the so-called right of return is the major obstacle to peace. Everyone knows it.
Yet, all of those who were so vocal today in telling Israel what is has to do for peace – mumbled, stuttered and conveniently lost their voices when it came to telling the Palestinians that the so-called right of return is a non-starter.
For decades, this body has rubberstamped nearly every Palestinian whim, no matter how counter-factual or counter-productive. What has this accomplished? The lip service of this body has only done a disservice for peace.
Mr. President,
True friends of the Palestinians have a responsibility to tell them the truth. 
They will stop promoting the distorted version of history that characterizes this day, and start delivering the real lessons of history that the Palestinian leadership now refuses to heed.
These lessons are clear: bilateral negotiations are the only route to two states, for two peoples – living side-by-side in peace and security; negotiations that resolve the outstanding concerns of both sides.
While bypass maneuvers may work for heart surgery and highway construction, they will not bring peace or security to our region.
Direct negotiations were the way of President Sadat and Prime Minister Begin, the way of Prime Minister Rabin and King Hussein. It has been the framework for advancing peace between Israel and the Palestinians for the past two decades.
Time and again, we have extended our hand in peace to the Palestinians. Prime Minister Netanyahu stood in this very hall last September and declared his commitment to the cause of Palestinian self-determination – and his vision for establishing a Palestinian state, alongside the Jewish State of Israel – two states for two peoples.
Yet, today we wait for the Palestinians to give up the false idol of unilateralism – and get back to the real hard work of direct negotiations.  And – as they continue to run away from the negotiating table, the Palestinian leadership continues to move closer into their embrace of Hamas – an internationally recognized terrorist organization dedicated to the destruction of Israel.
This development brings to my mind Groucho Marx’s famous line: "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them … well, I have others." The Quartet has long applied three principles that Hamas must adopt.  It must renounce violence, recognize Israel and abide by prior agreements. At no point has Hamas satisfied these conditions – or indicated any intention to do so.
Those who advocate recognizing a Government that includes Hamas are urging a Groucho-Marxist policy in a complex, unstable region. If Hamas is too extreme to accept these principles, they argue, we must tailor our principles to match Hamas's extremism.
The bar has been set very low. On these basic requirements for peace, there can be no adjustments. There can be no bargaining. There can be no Holiday Season discounts – in this hall or anywhere else.
Mr. President,
Even more than the words spoken in the speeches here today – or the words in the resolutions before you— it is the words not spoken that speak volumes. This Assembly has made clear that it does not stand in solidarity with many people in our region today.
In this hall, I hear no solidarity with the one million Israeli men, women and children who live under the constant rain rockets, mortars and missiles from the Gaza Strip.
I hear no solidarity with the 16-year old boy who was killed last April when a Hamas anti-Tank Missile struck his school bus. Or the thousands of other Israeli civilians who have been killed and injured.
I hear no solidarity with the Israeli children who learn the alphabet at the same time that they learn the names Kassam, Grad, and Katyusha – the rockets that keep them out of school for weeks at a time.
I hear no solidarity with the Palestinians who are victims of brutal Hamas rule – with the political opponents who are tortured, the women who are subjugated, or the children who are used as suicide bombers and human shields.
And – Mr. President, today I hear no solidarity with the many people in the Middle East who are being repressed and slaughtered every single day for demanding their freedom. From Syria to Iran to Yemen, these people are no longer content with their leader’s explanations that Israel is to blame for all the problems of the Middle East – a fiction that is advanced through resolutions like those before us today.
Today the People of the Middle East demand real answers for their plight.
I also heard no discussion today about the incitement that continues to fill the West Bank and Gaza, where the next generation of Palestinian children is being taught that suicide bombers are heroes, that Jews have no connection to the Holy Land, and that they must seek to annihilate the State of Israel.
From cradles to kindergarten classrooms; from the grounds of summer camps to the stands of football stadiums; from the names of public squares to the public pronouncements of Palestinian leaders, these messages are everywhere.
Just last month, President Abbas declared that the Palestinian Authority would provide a grant of up to $5,000 to every terrorist released in exchange for Gilad Shalit, Israel’s kidnapped soldier.
These are people like Ibrahim Shammasina, who helped to murder four Israelis, including two teenagers. People like Walid Anajas, who planned bombings in the heart of Jerusalem and Rishon Lezion, which killed 32.
People like Wafa-al Bis, who unsuccessfully tried to blow herself up in an Israeli hospital.
Washed in the blood of innocents, these terrorists are being held up as role models for the next generation of Palestinian children.
Palestinian Authority television broadcast President Abbas’ remarks to these released terrorists last October. He said, “You are people of struggle and Jihad fighters for Allah and the homeland... Your sacrifice and your effort and your actions were not in vain.”
Mr. President,
Sustainable peace must take root in homes, schools, and media that teach tolerance and understanding so that it can grow in hearts and minds.
It must come from a Palestinian leadership willing to tell its people about the difficult compromises that they will have to make for statehood.
It will come through the hard work of state-building, not the old habit of state-bashing.
Today none of these truths have been spoken.
Today I hear no solidarity with the principles of peace.
I know that the truth can be a burden. I know that old habits die-hard. I know that the convenience of the moment sometimes weighs heavy on the interests of the future.
Yet, only the truth will set us free. After years of darkness, I call on this Assembly to bring new light to this debate.
I call on each and every delegate in this hall to embrace pragmatic solutions, not automatic resolutions; to speak with candor, and not slander; to grapple for a new vision, and not old divisions.
I call on this Assembly to finally glean truth from this historic day, nourishing the seeds of peace in our region that can blossom into a brighter future.  
Thank you, Mr. President

Israel occupies Wall Street

Israel was able to occupy Wall Street on Tuesday, as the New York Stock Exchange celebrated its annual Israel Day in conjunction with the America - Israel Friendship League and the Israel - America Chamber of Commerce.
The Israeli presence on the American financial scene is significant. The total market capitalization of the 14 Israeli companies listed on NYSE Euronext markets is approximately $11.4 billion.

The day’s conference, titled “A Partnership of Business Innovation,” featured speakers including [Israel - America Chamber of Commerce Chairwoman Ofra] Strauss, Israeli Ambassador to the UN Ron Prosor and Israeli Consul-General Ido Aharoni.

Roundtable sessions at the end of the day focused on showing that Israel can be a good partner for American businesses both to increase exports and create jobs.

Tamar Guy, CEO of the Israeli-American Chamber of Commerce, noted that this particular conference is different from all other conferences in that where other meetings are highly specialized, this one is deliberately broad. This is in order to serve as a cross-section of the variety of opportunities available to cross-border investors.

“The thing we’re trying to show is that partnership and innovation are beneficial to both Israelis and Americans,” Guy said. “One of the best places to create jobs in the US is through innovation, and the best source for innovation is, naturally, Israel.”
I'm sure the conspiracy theorists outside the Exchange have a very different view, but I would have loved to be inside.

Youngest Air Force Chaplain calls Andrews home

JOINT BASE ANDREWS, Md.  -- Chaplain (Capt.) Daniel Kamzan, 11th Wing Jewish chaplain, calls Joint Base Andrews home. Despite his short-lived Air Force career, the 27-year old chaplain is making a name for himself in the "Chief's Own." Revered as a leader by single Airmen during chapel-run retreats and regarded with respect and reverence by those to whom he offers counsel, Kamzan embodies the makings of an essential Team Andrews asset.

Before choosing to join the Air Force, Kamzan had plans of becoming a staff Judge Advocate General or a chaplain for NASA. However, after transferring colleges, Kamzan answered his call to become an Air Force Jewish chaplain and officially began his military career. 

"I always knew I wanted to serve God and my country," said Kamzan. "I also knew that the best way to do that was to join the military and become a spiritual leader in our armed forces."

During his time as a master of divinity studies student, and in-between spending multiple summer months studying Jewish law at Yeshiva Ohr Somaych in Israel, Kamzan attended the Air Force's Basic Chaplain Course and Commissioned Officers Training School and received his commission. In April 2010, Kamzan officially became a Rabbi.

"There are only 22 people in the entire world with my job," said Kamzan. "I'm so blessed to be here, I'm not taking this opportunity for granted."

Being the youngest chaplain in the Air Force has also offered a perspective to Team Andrews, and the Air Force, that only Kamzan can provide. 

"If I need to mentor someone who is a younger Airman, our generation gap is going to be smaller than if they choose to be mentored by a majority of other chaplains," said Kamzan. "Our cultures are going to be close, if not the same. People can often be intimidated by rank, but if they choose to get my help, I'll be able to relate to a majority of younger Airmen on a different level."

With guidance from surrounding 11 WG Jewish chaplains and various other Air Force leaders, Kamzan has also been able to turn his age into one of his most influential attributes. 

"He definitely brings energy to our office," said Tech Sgt. Franklin Castro, NCO in charge of chapel operations. "Chaplain Kamzan is always willing to help the chapel staff out - no matter what the task. He's keen to attend chapel visitations, retreats, volunteer events - you name it. He's kind of a rock-star chaplain."

Despite being a member of the Air Force for less than five years, Kamzan has learned a great deal from his career thus far and offers advice to anyone interested in pursuing a career as a military chaplain.

"There are so many opportunities in this career field; I'm constantly growing," said Kamzan. "Being a chaplain has taught me about who I am as a person. It's also told me that being solid in one's faith is one of the most important components of being a chaplain. In this job, one has to be unyielding in their core values. A military chaplain also cannot proselytize, but instead, has to learn how to counsel and guide those individuals who are seeking guidance." 

Team Andrews members have the opportunity to learn from and speak with Kamzan, or any other 11 WG Jewish chaplain, in person at weekly Jewish worship services held on Andrews. For more information regarding how to become an Air Force chaplain or about Andrews' various religious services contact the 11 WG chaplaincy at (301) 981-2111 or stop by Chapel 1 here. 

"Becoming a chaplain was, I felt, the best way to serve those who serve," said Kamzan. "So far, this has been an awesome career choice. I'm excited to see where this job takes me in the future." 

Oy vey! Jewish group's boss told 'mensch' Marshall Garvin where to pray, lawsuit says Marshall Garvin says he was fired for leaving work to go to synagogue after mother died

 Marshall Garvin who was fired by Na'Amat USA. He is suing them for religious discrimination.
Michael Schwartz for New York Daily News
Marshall Garvin was fired by Na'amat USA and is suing Jewish women's group for religious discrimination.
A 65-year-old “mensch” who worked for a major Jewish women’s group says his supervisor harassed him for leaving work to pray when his mom died — and fired him when he kvetched to the boss.
Marshall Garvin, a religious Jew from Riverdale, the Bronx, says he was canned an hour after he complained to Na’amat USA President Elizabeth Raider about supervisor Susan Schwartz.
He filed a religious discrimination lawsuit against the organization and Schwartz in the Bronx Tuesday, saying she “dictated” to him which nearby synagogues he could attend to say Kaddish — the traditional mourner’s prayer.
“No person of any religion should have to go through this,” Garvin told the Daily News. “It’s unconscionable for a religious Jewish woman to behave this way.”
Garvin said his religious duties required him to pray three times a day after his mother, Clara, died of cancer in January.
But instead of showing compassion, Schwartz phoned several local synagogues and told Garvin which ones he could attend, the suit alleges.
She harassed him for daily reports on his whereabouts, kept him from attending at least 15 services and had him fired in March, Garvin claims.
Na’amat, a social service organization that helps women in need, denies any discrimination.
“This gentleman was laid off in a reduction of force,” said Robert Schanzer, a lawyer for Na’amat.
Garvin, who worked as a mailman for more than 30 years, won two prior settlements for religious discrimination lawsuits against the U.S. Postal Service, records show.
“He’s a mensch , and he fights discrimination wherever he sees it,”said one of Garvin’s old post office colleagues.

YNET: Air Force Inaugurates 1st Military Mikveh

The Israel Defense Forces will inaugurate the first military mikveh in history on Thursday, at the southern Air Force base in Ovda.
The ceremony will be attended by the donor who transferred some $100,000 for the ritual bath's construction, as well as senior Military Rabbinate and base officers.
According to Military Rabbinate sources, the project was launched after women living on-base complained about having to travel 60 kilometers (37 miles) to Eilat every time they wish to immerse in a mikveh.
Sources in the army say the new mikveh has nothing to do with religion and army issues which have sparked several rows over the past few months, claiming that the plan was initiated over a decade ago, during the term of the former military chief rabbi, Brigadier-General (Res.) Avichai Ronsky.

The UN’s International Day of Solidarity Against the Jews Posted by Joseph Klein

There is no single issue on which the United Nations expends more time and energy than its advocacy of the Palestinian cause. It dominates the agendas of various UN bodies, supported by American taxpayer dollars, including the UN Human Rights Council, the Division for Palestinian Rights, the Special Committee to Investigate Israeli Human Rights Practices Affecting the Palestinian People and Other Arabs of the Occupied Territories, the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, and the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees.
The UN’s obsession over Palestine has led to the world body’s repudiation of its own original two-state solution, spurned by all of the Arab countries and the Palestinians themselves back in 1947.
Beginning in 1977, the United Nations has sponsored the “International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People” on November 29th, the date in 1947 when the UN General Assembly approved its Palestine partition resolution. Former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan called November 29th a “day of mourning and a day of grief.” The event takes place every year at UN headquarters in New York and at the UN Offices at Geneva and Vienna and elsewhere.
In other words, every November 29th, the United Nations publicly mourns the passage of its own peaceful solution to the Arab-Jewish dispute, which had called for the establishment of an independent Arab state and independent Jewish state. Every year the UN commiserates over the adoption by the General Assembly of the 1947 partition resolution under which the Palestinians could have been living in their own independent state for the last sixty-four years if the Arabs had only accepted it. Even Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has conceded that the Arabs’ rejection of the partition resolution was a big mistake, but the day of mourning and grief over the Palestinians’ self-inflicted wounds go on anyway at the United Nations.
This year is no exception. In addition to a series of pro-Palestinian speeches denouncing Israel, the meeting is featuring an encore showing of the film titled La Terre Parle Arabe (The Land Speaks Arabic). The film purports to equate Zionism with Nazism. It depict the alleged “expulsion of the indigenous Arab population” and the alleged “ethnic cleansing of Palestine by the Zionist movement.”
The following is an excerpt from the film’s script:
Christians and Muslims alike…unite in their hatred of Zionism…I preferred to die as a martyr rather than be governed by the Jews …The children cried …The Hagana had no mercy, no pity. Zionists! They were Zionists!…
The Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, which hosts this hatefest, was established by the General Assembly in November 1975. Its current two year budget, including support from the Division for Palestinian Rights of the UN Secretariat, is approximately $5 million, of which American taxpayers are on the hook for more than $1 million.
What does this $5 million pay for? A Palestinian propaganda arm. The Land Speaks Arabic, shown so proudly by the UN Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, is today’s version of the infamous Nazi anti-Semitic propaganda film Jud Süss.
In its own words, the committee “advocates” for the “inalienable rights of the Palestinian people.” As part of its advocacy, the committee issues annual reports, convenes international meetings and conferences in various regions of the world, and hosts the annual November 29th Palestinian solidarity meetings.
The committee’s most recent annual report lays the blame for the stalemated negotiations entirely on Israel. Whether it is the settlements, the security fence or blockading the Gaza coast to prevent arms smuggling to Hamas, everything Israel does to protect its own citizens is suspect.
The committee calls upon the Security Council and the General Assembly to favorably consider Palestine’s application for United Nations membership. And it advocates the Palestinian definition of what the Palestinian state should look like – “a Palestinian State on the basis of the pre-1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital, and a just and agreed solution to the Palestine refugees issue.” The committee’s idea of a “just” solution to the Palestine refugees issue would entail their return to “their homes and property from which they had been displaced.” This is the essence of the so-called right of return to pre-1967 Israel demanded by the Palestinians.
The United Nations’ obsession with promoting the Palestinian cause – to delegitimize the Jewish state and enable its destruction – knows no bounds.

Arab Protests About Jerusalem Renovation Reveal the Real Obstacle to Peace Jonathan S. Tobin

Those Middle East observers who prefer to focus on Israel’s actions or inactions as the only source of tension in the region generally ignore the greatest obstacle to peace or even coexistence: the deep and abiding hatred for Jews that has become entrenched in Arab political culture. No better example of the utter irrationality of that culture and its obsessive nature exists than how the news of the renovation of a ramp leading to Jerusalem’s Temple Mount has become the subject of intense controversy.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced on Friday that plans to demolish a temporary structure that allowed access to the Temple Mount would be indefinitely postponed due to the threats of violence not only from Palestinians but also from Egypt and Jordan. As with the case of previous efforts to either modernize or create better access for this historic and sacred area, any actions by Israel have been regarded by denizens of the so-called “Arab street” as a conspiratorial plot to destroy the mosques on the Temple Mount or otherwise offend Muslim sensibilities. The fact that even an anti-Israel institution like UNESCO — which has routinely denounced archeological digs in the city by Israelis — regards the ramp demolition as in no way compromising Muslim rights or shrines is meaningless to Israel’s Arab foes. While frustrating for Israel, these threats ought to clearly illustrate to the world the irrational aspect of Arab and Islamic critique of Israel. The resentment the Temple Mount project has generated is rooted in a belief that Jews have no right to be in Jerusalem. It has nothing to do with anything Netanyahu or his government might do.
Renovation of the ramp, which is a temporary structure put up in 2003 after an earthquake and a severe winter storm caused the old access ramp to collapse, in no way harms the mosques on the Temple Mount or interferes with Muslim rights to worship there. Indeed, the carrying on about anything Israel does with the adjoining Western Wall or the tunnels leading to it have never been about any harm to Arabs or Muslims. After all, in an act of magnanimity that has never been equaled in the annals of war, Israel handed over control of the Temple Mount — which is the most sacred spot in Judaism — to the Muslim Wakf almost immediately after the city was unified in 1967. For the first time in history, one of the contestants for control of the city did not destroy the shrines of other faiths or convert them to other uses as Christian and Muslim conquerors had done. But Israel got no credit for Moshe Dayan’s attempt to appease Islamic sensibilities. In the decades since this gesture, the Wakf has redoubled its efforts to foment violence. Even more to the point, it has conducted excavations on the historic site that resulted in the trashing of antiquities.
The only period when all religions were allowed free access to their holy sites in the city’s history has been the last 44 years of Jewish sovereignty. Yet Muslims still react to any Jewish presence in the Old City much as they did in 1929 when extremists fomented rumors of a Jewish plot to destroy the Temple Mount mosques that resulted in riots that took the lives of many Jews, including the massacre of the ancient Jewish community of Hebron.
It speaks volumes about the way Israel remains the boogeyman of Islamic culture that even in the midst of the convulsions that have racked Egypt in recent weeks, demonstrators in Tahir Square found time to obsess about a harmless ramp renovation project in Jerusalem. Though seemingly a minor affair when compared to the great conflicts over territory and the struggle for democracy, the threats over the ramp allow us to see the deep-seated nature of anti-Israel bias.
If there is to be any hope for peace between Israel and its neighbors it will have to wait until there is a sea change in the political culture of a Muslim world still stuck in their irrational hatred for the Jews.

Israel Day at the New York Stock Exchange

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Yad Vashem and the Haredim. NY Doctor Slams Yad Vashem For Failing To Accurately Memorialize Charedim From WWII Era, By MEIR WIKLER

Even Yad Vashem would admit that Haredim represented more than two percent of the total number of Holocaust survivors. Why won’t the museum’s exhibits reflect that fact?

Yad Vashem just doesn’t get it. After my fourth visit to the New Wing at the Holocaust memorial since it opened in ’05, I am convinced that the administration simply does not understand why we Haredim are so upset with the museum. Despite all the negative coverage Yad Vashem has received in Haredi publications in Israel and the Diaspora, they still don’t get it.

Basically, there are three things that bother us about the New Wing. Firstly, we are severely underrepresented among the videotaped testimonies of survivors displayed throughout the exhibit. Some 50 to 60 monitors continuously play eyewitness accounts of the Shoah. But only one portrays a Haredi survivor. The percentage of Orthodox survivors is certainly open to debate, but even Yad Vashem would concede that Haredim represented far more than two percent of the total number of survivors.

Secondly, the presentation of the few Haredi personalities that are included in the New Wing is grossly distorted. Rabbi Michoel Dov Weissmandl and his heroic Working Group are a prime illustration. The following text appears alongside Rabbi Weissmandl’s photo in the museum: “In the course of negotiations over the summer of 1942, the Group paid ransom money to Dieter Wisliceny, Eichman’s delegate in Slovakia. For various considerations, the deportations were halted in the autumn of 1942 but the Working Group believed this was a result of their bribes, and encouraged them further.”

This wording makes it appear as if the Working Group’s bribes had no bearing on the cessation of deportations in ’42 and the Working Group was duped by the Nazis. This is historically inaccurate and insulting to Haredim who revere and respect the rescue efforts of Rabbi Weissmandl and other Orthodox rabbinic leaders.

Finally, the entire issue of spiritual heroism during the Shoah is relegated to mere footnote status. The vast numbers of examples of Jews in the ghettos and concentration camps who risked their lives to study Torah and observe the mitzvot are almost completely ignored. No, not all martyrs were Orthodox, but many were. They should certainly be memorialized in the way they would want to be remembered. To do otherwise is nothing less than a slap in the face to their descendants and their community.

TO ANSWER some of the commmon questions I’ve been asked, perhaps it is appropriate to interview myself.

What is your ulterior motive in writing this article?
My purpose is to articulate the feelings of Haredim in order to prod Yad Vashem to set the record straight in the New Wing of their museum.

If you are so interested in having the Orthodox point of view presented, why don’t you set up your own museum under Orthodox auspices?
Haredi Jewry’s frustration with Yad Vashem has already spawned several initiatives to do just that, both in Israel and the Diaspora. The millions of tourists who come to Yad Vashem each year, however, are unlikely to visit those Orthodox museums. Distortions at Yad Vashem, therefore, must be corrected for them.

If you really want Yad Vashem to understand your complaints, why don’t you meet with them in person?
I did. At their request, the meeting was “off the record,” and subsequent requests for follow-up meetings with Yad Vashem representatives have been denied (in writing). The public arena, therefore, is the only forum available to me now.

What was the response of the Yad Vashem officials with whom you met? And have any changes been made to the museum since it opened?
Initially, I was told that everything was still too new. They said they would re-evaluate all aspects of the museum and make changes. During the past six years, perhaps in response to articles such as this one, minor changes have been made. Instead of zero videotaped testimonies by Haredi survivors, for example, now there is one. But much more needs to be done and at a much quicker pace before Haredi authors will change from adversaries to advocates of Yad Vashem.

Have Yad Vashem representatives responded to the negative critiques that have appeared in the Haredi press?
In some cases, the periodical editors were castigated for publishing articles which were critical of Yad Vashem. At other times, the Yad Vashem spokespersons attempted to obfuscate the issues. They cited, for example, the online services available to the Haredi community. They pointed to the special Orthodox division of their tour guide training school. And they emphasized how many Orthodox students make use of Yad Vashem archives for research purposes. Occasionally, they resorted to casting personal aspersions on the writers of the unflattering reviews.

The substantive objections to the museum cited above, however, were simply not addressed in their responses.

What do you hope to accomplish by writing in The Jerusalem Post?

I hope to impress upon Yad Vashem that the negative sentiments among Haredim toward Yad Vashem are not fleeting, fickle or fringe. Moreover, they are provoked by omissions and misrepresentations which can and must be corrected now to truly honor the memory of the victims and survivors of the Shoah. We owe it to them, to ourselves and to all future generations.

The writer is a New York based psychotherapist, author and public speaker.