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Saturday, February 20, 2010

[Updated] Adalah-NY strikes a blow for "human rights" and against Zionist ballet

http://zionism-israel.com/israel_news/2010/02/nif-protege-adalah-strikes-blow-for.html


Protesters led by Adalah-NY, struck their version of a blow for "human rights" and "justice" by disrupting a performance of the Israel ballet in Vermont. According to Ynet news, the self-proclaimed forces of justice and freedom under Adalah claimed that "anyone who watched the performance was "supporting Israel's apartheid policy."'


Update - Originally, this story claimed, based on the Ynet story, that the protest against the Israel ballet was led by the New Israel fund supported Adalah group. Adalah, it will be remembered is the group that proposed a constitution that would abolish Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people and allow "right" of return for Palestinian refugees.

However, Ben Murane of New Israel Fund has written to protest that Adalah of Israel supported by NIF had nothing to do with the disruption of the Israel ballet, which is part of a campaign by a group called Adalah-NY. It seems Adalah in Israel only agitates for return of refugees and abolition of the Jewish state locally. NIF seems to have no qualms about supporting these goals. The NIF-supported Adalah does not disrupt ballet performances in the United States, according to Murane.

Indeed there is an Adalah-NY group (http://adalahny.org) that is funded by the WESPAC foundation. Ynet has not corrected or retracted their story, however. Neither the NIF nor the Israeli Adalah NGO have issued statements clarifying relationship, or lack thereof, between Adalah, and Adalah-NY. It is strange that New Israel Fund has not not contradicted the YNET story or tried to correct it.

Muqata Web log writes:

Update: Many have been claiming that the YNET story is factually incorrect in [that] the Israel Ballet performance was disrupted by "Adalah-NY" and not by "Adalah" in Israel which is NIF funded. YNET has not changed or updated their story. Despite the YNET report, the Muqata blog notes this, and states that we don't know of a connection between the anti-Israel Adalah-NY organization and the NIF-funded Adalah organization in Israel.


Verdict : NIF role in funding disruption of ballet, "not proven." We have probably been taken in by a canard. NIF role in funding advocacy of ending the Jewish state: proven. If you want to donate to disruption of Israeli ballet in the USA, you'll have to give to WESPAC. If you just want to support right of return for Palestinian refugees and boycotts of Israel, contributions to NIF will support Mossawa, Adalah (in Israel) and Machsomwatch, all organizations that further these goals.

Ami Isseroff

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Tuesday, February 16, 2010

New Israel Fund supports divestment

http://zionism-israel.com/israel_news/2010/02/new-israel-fund-supports-divestment.html

New Israel Fund insists that the charges against it (see  Funding Anti-Zionism - Adalah, NIF and the "New Israel"   New Israel Fund supports anti-Zionist Propaganda and NIF Funds anti-Zionists Take II )  made by Im Tirzu and others are all bogus McCarthyism:
 
The New Israel Fund, in its defense, says it does not support those who demonize Israel or call for divestment or boycott of Israel, and that it will not assist those who advocate the "right of return" for Palestinians to reclaim land lost to them in 1948. 
 
But the truth is that New Israel Fund funds Adalah, a group that wrote a proposed Israeli constitution calling for Right of Return. (see   Funding Anti-Zionism - Adalah, NIF and the "New Israel" ). NIF also supports Mossawa and Machsomwatch, both of which called on the Norwegian government to support a boycott of Israel, and NIF collects "donor advised" donations for Whoprofits. Click this link and see for yourself:  http://whoprofits.org/Donations.php. You can see there that the instructions state: "Make out a check to "New Israel Fund", write in the memo line "for the Coalition of Women for Peace – Who Profits Project."  This was not invented by Im Tirtzu or by me. Who Profits is a project of the Coalition of Women for Peace (CWP). Despite express denials, it seems that NIF supported CWP in 2008, with a grant that channeled money from the Ford Foundation, and they continue to support Coalition of Women for Peace though donor-advised channeling.
 
Why does the Ford Foundation find it convenient to channel grants through NIF, and why does NIF act as a conduit for the Ford Foundation? Any organization that was once funded by NIF is allowed to use NIF as a donor-advised contribution channel unless a decision is made to the contrary. New Israel Fund knows that CWP supports divestment, but did not cancel its donor-advised status.
 
The "donor-advised" status actually means that money contributed to them is tax-deductible in the United States as if it had been donated to NIF. Formally, it means that the money was donated to NIF for the express purpose of funding CWP, and NIF used it to fund CWP. If it was not formally recognized as a donation to NIF, it would not be tax deductible, as CWP has no 501c(3) tax deductible status in the United States. So NIF is supporting CWP at least formally. If NIF claims they are not supporting CWP and divestment, then the tax shelter given to these donations is a fraud.
 
It is beyond my understanding how people can claim that telling potential donors to New Israel Fund that it supports CWP and denies that it does so, that it supports Adalah and other organizations that call for divestment and right of return is not "democratic" or why it is "McCarthyism" to ask the Israeli government to investigate its ties with a group that is funding delegitimation of Israel. Don't NIF donors have rights? Doesn't the Israeli government and the Israeli taxpayer have rights? Don't we have the right to know how our money is being spent, and to donate to causes we believe in? Isn't it wrong to collect money for "democracy" and use it to support groups that are trying to destroy Israel?
 
Ami Isseroff  

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Monday, February 15, 2010

Funding anti-Zionism: Adalah, NIF and the "New Israel"

http://zionism-israel.com/israel_news/2010/02/funding-anti-zionism-adalah-nif-and-new.html

The expose of New Israel Fund funding of anti-Zionist groups by Im Tirtzu (see New Israel Fund supports anti-Zionist Propaganda and NIF Funds anti-Zionists Take II ) drew fire from people who insist that New Israel Fund is pure as the driven snow, well-intentioned liberal Zionists, and that Im Tirtzu is a "right-wing" organization intent on stifling free speech. Im Tirtzu admittedly is a right wing group, but you can and should judge for yourself about the organizations that New Israel fund is funding.
Adalah is one of the organizations funded by New Israel Fund, as you can verify here. According to the statement of NIF:
[Adalah] Seeks to achieve equal rights for the Arab citizens in Israel, and to protect their minority rights with regard to land, housing, education, employment, language, political participation, women's rights, prisoner rights and cultural and religious rights.
That sounds wonderful. What does it mean in practice? In 2007, Adalah proposed a new constitution for Israel. It is posted on the Web at the Adalah Web site here.
Here are some features of this proposed constitution:
From the introduction:
"Adalah is issuing "The Democratic Constitution," as a constitutional proposal for the state of Israel, based on the concept of a democratic, bilingual, multicultural state."
No more Jewish state. Halas! Mafeesh! This is indeed a "New Israel."
Chapter 1 Article 4: " The State of Israel must recognize, therefore, its responsibility for the injustices of the Nakba and the Occupation; recognize the right of return of the Palestinian refugees based on UN Resolution 194..."
Chapter 2 Article 15 implies repeal of the law of return: Israel will no longer be a country for Jews seeking to live as part of a sovereign nation:

"The laws of citizenship and immigration will be established on the basis of the principle of anti-discrimination and will define the arrangements by which the State of Israel will grant citizenship to:

A. Anyone who was born within the territory of the State of Israel and whose parent was also born within the territory of the State of Israel;

B. Anyone who was born to a parent who is a citizen of the state;

C, The spouse of a citizen of the state;

D. Those who arrive or remain in the state due to humanitarian reasons, including those who are persecuted on the basis of political background."

Chapter 2 Article 20 is the foundation essentially of a binational state, but one that guarantees only Arab rights. It proposes one of two models. In the first model, every law will need to be approved by a committee composed of at least 50% representatives of Arab parties. Model II states:
"No bill will be approved by the plenum of the Knesset if 75% of the members of the Knesset who belong to parties which by their definition or character are Arab parties or Arab-Jewish parties vote against it under the reasoning that the bill violates the fundamental rights of the Arab minority."
Jews do not get this right. It won't be needed anyhow, since following exercise of the "right" of return, the Arabs will soon be a majority.
Chapter 3, Articles 29 and following supposedly guarantee civil rights - freedom of religion, information, privacy, etc. But contrary to Western constitutions, and like the Palestinian and other Arab country constitutions, they each include a provision that the right can be limited or nullified by a special law, in this language:
"...these liberties shall not be restricted except by a law enacted for a necessary purpose which is in accordance with the basic principles of a bilingual and multicultural democratic society, and to an extent that is no greater than is required.:"
That is an anti-constitutional provision that makes a joke of rights. Essentially, it states that people have rights unless the government decides to take them away. It means the government can enact any law it likes to abridge civil rights. Who decides what is in accordance with the principles? Who decides what extent is no greater than required? What is a "necessary purpose?"
Chapter 3: Article 39 - Restitution of all the property of all Arabs taken in 1948, and compensation for all the time they were denied use of their property:
" Every person whose land has been expropriated or whose right to property has been violated arbitrarily or because of his or her Arab nationality under the following laws is entitled to have his or her property restored and to receive compensation for the period during which his or her right to property was denied: the Land Ordinance (Acquisition for Public Purposes) of 1943, and/or the Land Acquisition (Validation of Acts and Compensation) Law of 1953, and/or the Absentee Property Law of 1950, and/or article 22 of the Statute of Limitations of 1958, and/or Regulation 125 of the Emergency (Defense) Regulations of 1945."
Since the constitution also calls for right of return, that means giving up all the land of all the Arabs who ran away or were expelled in 1948
The constitution is alluded to euphemistially in the NIF page about Adalah as the following goal:
Drafting and proposing a Charter of Human Rights as an alternative document to the various proposals for constitution in Israel .
The actual proposed constitution, which is not a charter of human rights, is published at Adalah's Web site. It has been public knowledge since 2007, but NIF does not tell their donors about it at all. NIF continued to fund Adalah after they published their proposed constitution.
Nobody disputes that Adalah has a right to their opinions. They have the right to free speech and freedom of the press and assembly. Not even Im Tirtzu disputes that. But the constitution they propose puts an end to the right of the Jewish people to self-determination under the pretense of ensuring minority rights. It calls for "right" of return, return of refugee property, Arab veto over legislation, arbitrary abridgement of civil rights, abolition of the Law of return and abolition of Israel as the national state of the Jewish people. Is Adalah an organization that is worthy of the support of a Zionist fund?
While Adalah has a right to have and express their opinions, some people seem to dispute the right of NIF donors to know that that is what they are funding, and some people insist, for reasons I can't understand, that the Israeli government and Jewish Agency must continue blindly cooperating with NIF, which funds Adalah, and financing their birthright trips, which no doubt inculcate more of the same philosophy.
As with Adalah, we can go through the list of organizations funded by NIF - Mossawa, Birthright, Betselem.... Is it "McCarthyism" to ensure that NIF donors know what they are actually funding, as opposed to the euphemistic account given by NIF at their Web site? Is it "McCarthyism" to investigate whether the Israeli government should or should not cooperate with Adalah? Decide for yourself.
Ami Isseroff

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Saturday, February 13, 2010

URGENT: Please support free speech in American Universities - Even for Zionists

http://zionism-israel.com/israel_news/2010/02/urgent-please-support-free-speech-in.html

Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren's talk at the University of California at Irvine was aborted because of heckling by a small group of unruly extremists. A number of the students face disciplinary action.
The students are part of a group that has terrorized UC Irvine political gatherings for years, screaming "one state, one state" and preventing opponents from speaking.
The other side is running a write-in campaign to block disciplinary action against the students, so it is important to send as many letters as possible in support of disciplinary action.


Please pass the word to ask UC Irvine officials to expel these people and put an end to the "one state" groupies at Irvine.

Use the addresses/ telephone numbers to support prosecution of the offenders.
Ask to speak with Chancellor Drake or leave a message at: (949) 824 - 5011
and email him at: chancellor@uci.edu
Speak to the Dean of Students office, who are determining the punishment at: (949) 824-5181 and email them at: deanstu@uci.edu

Update

Since this group of extremists has flourished for many years and has been tolerated, at least, by UC Irvine administrators, you can and should, in addition to the above, contact the Governor of the State of California and the regents of the University of California:


University of California Regents: regentsoffice@ucop.edu


California Governor Schwarzenegger: http://gov.ca.gov/interact#email

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Friday, February 12, 2010

NIF funds anti-Zionists - Take II

http://zionism-israel.com/israel_news/2010/02/nif-funds-anti-zionists-take-ii.html

The original reports about New Israel Fund (see New Israel Fund supports anti-Zionists ) by Maariv journalists Ben-Dror Yemini and Ben Caspit, and the Im Tirtzu report on which they were based were not accurate. Im Tirtzu's advertisement claimed that without the New Israel Fund and Naomi Chazan there would not not have been a Goldstone report condemning Israel. This was prima facie nonsense, and some of the statistics on which this claim was based turn out to be dubious as well. Moreover, it seems that New Israel Fund never funded Zochrot (though they did support them evidently, both directly and indirectly) or New Profile, the draft-dodger group. They did fund Coalition of Women for Peace (CWP) but stopped funding them after 2006 (see here, here and here and NIF's own rejoinder here ).


Im Tirtzu violated an important rule of Israel Advocacy - always be sure of the facts and tell the truth as precisely as possible. They created a sensation for a few days, but now the legitimate part of their claim, and there is a legitimate part, is endangered by their exaggerations and "Public Relations."

There should, however, be no cause for gloating and celebration among supporters of the New Israel Fund. The New Israel Fund is pictured as an innocent victim since they stopped funding Coalition of Women for Peace in 2006, and only support Zochrot but don't fund it. On that basis, American Jews who support Israel are asked to donate to New Israel Fund. Suppose an organization came to you soliciting funds, and their representative said, "We stopped funding the Ku Klux Klan in 2006, and we never funded the American National Socialist Workers Party. We only support them." Do you think you would or should give money to that organization?

Here is a listing of previous (last year's) NIF grantees. Some are innocent projects working for good causes - or so they seem. But some are not necessarily so innocent. The NIF supports Adalah and Breaking the Silence among others. They were sources of materials used in the Goldstone report, and unfailing sources of disinformation designed to blacken Israel's image. Or consider the Al Yater association, which "Promotes the rights of the Palestinian population in Acre." Acre is in Israel. The people in question are Israeli Arabs. Only those who do not recognize the legitimacy of the state of Israel call these people "Palestinians." Or consider Phsyicians for Human Rights. This organization became famous when it popularized the case of a poor Palestinian who died, according to them, because the evil Zionists would not let him get treated for cancer. But the Palestinian never died and the story was a lie. That's the sort of thing NIF is proud to support.

Many of us, myself included, who felt that the Goldstone report was unfair called for a thorough civilian investigation of the IDF, a position that I am sure NIF would support. But the same logic must work for NIF supporters. Im Tirtzu may have gotten many facts wrong, but there are certainly problems with some of the organizations that NIF funds and has funded in the past. But NIF is stonewalling. Just as the Hamas is unwilling to launch an investigation of any kind into the Goldstone allegations, the NIF is unwilling to clean house. Instead, they rant about McCarthyite tactics and suppression of dissent. If the NIF has nothing to hide, why are they hiding it?

Ami Isseroff

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Wednesday, February 3, 2010

New Israel Fund supports anti-Zionist propaganda

http://zionism-israel.com/israel_news/2010/02/new-israel-fund-supports-anti-zionist.html

There is no doubt that the New Israel Fund means well - or at least many of its members and contributors do. But there is also no doubt that the New Israel Fund supports or collects funds for some of the most odious organizations in Israel - organizations whose goals have nothing to do with democracy and nothing to do with peace - organizations whose only goal is to besmirch Israel and to destroy Zionism and the Jewish state.


Zochrot is one example of these organizations. It organizes activities to perpetuate the myth that Israel was founded by "ethnic cleansing" of hapless and peaceful Palestinians who were minding their own business in 1948 - the Palestine Nakba myth. Its brochure claims that Israel expelled over 700,000 Palestinians in 1948. Its Web site links to the BADIL organization, that is dedicated to blocking any solution to the Palestinian refugee problem other than return to original (nonexisting) homes in Israel. New Israel fund also supports the innocently named "Coalition of Women for Peace" which is likewise involved in the delegitimation of Israel and Zionism, as well as New Profile, an organization noted for encouraging draft dodging.

The activities of New Israel Fund have been known for some time. The controversy over them was ignited by a study soon to be released by a right-wing group, Im Tirzu, which claims:




92 percent of the negative citations used in the Goldstone Report to criticize the IDF’s conduct in Gaza last year came from 16 Israeli NGOs, which Im Tirtzu has alleged received some $7.8 million in financial support from the NIF in 2008-2009 alone.

Among the NGOs listed in the report are Adalah, Breaking the Silence, B’Tselem, the Association for Civil Rights in Israel, the Center for the Defense of the Individual, the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel, Yesh Din, Doctors for Human Rights, Gisha, Bimkom, Rabbis for Human Rights, Itach, Other Voice, New Profile, Machsom Watch and Who Profits from the Occupation.

Im Tirtzu has its own political ax to grind, and showed execrable judgment in ad hominem attacks on Meretz politician Naomi Hazan, currently president of the international board of the New Israel Fund. The Im Tirtzu ad caricatured her with an "N.I.F." horn and titled her "Naomi Goldstone Hazan." In Hebrew, the word for horn is keren, which also means fund. This clever pun was lost on English speaking readers of course, who only saw a Jew with a horn.



The ad claimed that without the New Israel Fund there would not have been a Goldstone report. But we know that the New Israel Fund didn't initiate the Goldstone report, and that committee members were determined to find Israel guilty regardless of the evidence. There would have been a different Goldstone report without the New Israel Fund, with the same conclusions,

Hazan didn't initiate the Goldstone report and is not responsible for its findings. As president of the international board she may have much power, but it is doubtful if she is solely responsible for approving the funding requests of each organization. There was no excuse for their obnoxious advertisement, nor is Naomi Hazan responsible for all the output of all these organizations. Hazan is a passionate advocate of peace and is entitled to her opinion, though New Israel Fund doesn't have to support it. Im Tirtzu's regrettable misuse of their findings gave enemies of Israel just the opening they needed to destroy the credibility of a legitimate finding.

However, Im TIrtzu deserve the same hearing as others. The "rights" advocates ask us to separate the political message of groups like New Profile from the facts they present. There are, for example, real human rights violations at checkpoints that don't serve the cause of Israel in any way, and Machsomwatch exposes them. That doesn't mean Israel is an illegitimate apartheid state and it doesn't mean Zionism is racism, but it points out a fault that is in urgent need of correction. However, the same advocates who want us to accept testimony from Machsom Watch or Betselem, have no problem trying to discredit the facts that Im Tirtzu presents as the work of "settlers." It doesn't matter who said it. It matters that it is true.


Nobody denies that N.I.F. supports these organizations, and it is a fact that most of these organizations are out to destroy Israel. We need to separate the message from the messenger. It is too bad that middle of the road, responsible groups, including peace groups who are desperately in need of funds, did not dare to raise the issue of New Israel's selective funding of radicals, and left it to Im Tirzu. Where were all the Tikkun Olam people when Zochrot and Adallah were telling lies about Israel? Isn't correction of falsehoods also Tikkun Olam?

A recent article by Solomonia about New Israel Fund attracted vigorous protests claiming that these organizations are only fighting for civil rights and pointing out injustices. Let's be clear. If there is an injustice in any democratic society, it is the duty of citizens to report it, to highlight it and to fight it. But the way to fight Jim Crow in the United States was not to join the Cominform and insist that America must be destroyed. Similarly injustices in Israel cannot be fixed by those who advocate the destruction of Israel. Decapitation is not a good way to cure headaches. The Arab society that would replace Israel would not have the same respect for human rights, and there are also the human rights of Israeli Jews to consider. We are also human and have rights.

It is right and proper for any organization to give evidence to an investigatory commission, but it is wrong for them to give fabricated evidence, to claim that dead terrorists are civilians and to pass off hearsay as fact. It is right to point out inhumane behavior at checkpoints. It is wrong to use instances of brutality in a campaign to delegitimize the state. It is right for Breaking the Silence to uncover abuses by the army, and to provide documentation of these abuses to Israelis. It is wrong for Breaking the Silence to take their traveling road show of Israeli atrocity stories to US campuses, and show it to 18 year olds who never served in the army, never heard of Hamas and have no other background information about the Middle East. Adallah has the right to advocate for an Arab Palestinian state perhaps, but it is simply insane for New Israel Fund to collect money from Zionist Jews to give to an organization of that type, and we do not need Im Tirtzu to tell us that.

How can we explain the fact that Jews, not necessarily anti-Zionist Jews either, founded and contribute to and support a charity that funds organizations dedicated to the destruction of Israel and defamation of the Jewish people? Rather than advancing peace and democracy in Israel, these activities make "peace" and "democracy" into hateful words among the Israeli Jewish public, because in propaganda, "peace," "democracy" and "justice" have been made synonymous with defamation and genocide of the Jewish people, destruction of Israel and dissemination of lies. Are there no causes in Israel and no organizations that really advance peace and democracy that are more worthy of funding by the NIF than the mendacious political extremists and degenerates of groups like Zochrot?

An article by Ben-Dror Yemini, translated from Hebrew, explains the Israeli Zionist point of view:

SLUSH FUND
(Translation of Article by Ben-Dror Yemini, Ma'ariv, 2.2.10)

The New Israel Fund is part of the global deception campaign. It does not deal with human rights but with denying one people's right to self-determination.

The New Israel Fund is angry. It thinks that it is correct to spread false testimony about the State of Israel. It thinks that it is OK to participate in the demonization campaign of groups whose goal is to eliminate Israel. It thinks that it is OK to cooperate with the Goldstone Commission, even though it was established by the automatic majority of dark countries that controls the "UN Human Rights Council." It thinks that it is OK for Israel to cooperate with the Commission even though no country in the free world supported its establishment. It is certainly legitimate, in a democratic country, to do all these things.

But there is something else that is also legitimate: Expose the truth about the Fund and the groups that falsely carry the description "human rights." If most of the political groups that are supported by the Fund do not recognize the State of Israel's right to exist as a Jewish and democratic state – do not say human rights. Tell the truth: Denial of rights only for Jews. The Palestinians have the right to a state, a national state, of their own, just as the Croats, Hungarians, Czechs, Slovaks and other peoples do – but not the Jews.

For example, the New Israel Fund supports the Zochrot non-profit association, which openly aspires to eliminate the State of Israel via the realization of the "right of return." Not that there is any such right and not that there has been even one precedent of a mass "return" after post-war population exchanges – but this does not bother the Fund. It always jumps at the slogan "human rights."

None of this is to say that Israel is exempt from criticism. Among the hundreds of claims, there are those that have merit. But many sane people abhor the human rights bodies, not because they abhor human rights, on the contrary. It is because most sane people are fed up that human rights have become a weapon for dark forces.

The New Israel Fund has turned itself into yet another body, one among many in the world, that are party to global deception. There are a million and one attacks on human life and human rights in the world. Israel, as a state in the midst of conflict, makes fewer attacks than any other element. This has been verified. This is anchored in numbers. But it is Israel that absorbs most of the criticism. This is called demonization, delegitimization and obsession.

There is no defense of human rights here but rather an orchestrated campaign in the service of Iran and Hamas. This is not the Fund's intention but this is the result. Things should be called by their name. Most of the groups supported by the Fund deal in the delegitimization of Israel. But the Fund rolls its eyes and whines: What is wrong with human rights? There is nothing wrong. There is something wrong with those who clearly aspire to deny the Jews' right to exist in the only place where they have sovereignty, in order to turn Israel into a "state of all its citizens," in which the majority will be Hamas supporters. There is something wrong with those who want to perpetrate politicide on only one people in the world. There is something wrong with those who collaborate with dark forces and try to sell the lie that it is all about "human rights."

How is it that so many people, mainly Jews, support the Fund? How is it they facilitate this systematic campaign that masquerades as humanitarian and is, in effect, demonic? They are not anti-Semites. They are people with good intentions. Their rhetoric deals with human rights and minorities. Jews are sensitive to this and good for them. Most are simply unaware. Most truly and innocently want Israel to be more enlightened and more progressive, and stricter about human life and human rights. But they do not know that the money goes to other goals.

Even Professor Naomi Chazan, who heads the Fund, does not hate Israel. But what has happened to countless bodies that deal with "the rights talk" has happened to them. In the end, they serve the agenda of Iran and Hamas.

Human rights groups can restore the confidence in themselves. They need to support human rights, not groups that deal in denying Israel's right to exist. In the meantime, these groups, including the New Israel Fund, are the major enemy, not only of Israel but of the free world and human rights.

Not every group funded by the New Israel Fund is anti-Zionist. We don't want New Israel Fund to stop funding projects in Israel and we certainly want them to encourage human rights, democracy and peace. But responsible people who really care about these issues should ask of the N.I.F. that it limits its funding to groups that really support democracy and human rights, not groups that are bent on the destruction of Israel.

Ami Isseroff

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Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Costco Targeted by anti-Israel boycott - your help needed

http://zionism-israel.com/israel_news/2010/02/costco-targeted-by-anti-israel-boycott.html

The Israel Boycott people are at it again. There is no doubt about their objective, since the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) group Web site states that they are against "Imperialism, Colonialism and Zionism" a sentiment endorsed indirectly by Jewish Voice for Peace and the American Friends Service Committee.
This time they are targeting Costco for selling Israeli fruit. You can help by contacting Costco and thanking them for ignoring the boycott as described below and by buying Israeli products at Costco stores, and by investing in Costco stock and telling them why.

...[According to boycotters] Costco is guilty of selling Israeli grown clementines. The boycott has a home on the Web and it has volunteers recruiting and instructing people on what they can do to encourage Costco to stop the sale of Israeli goods. Below is the body of a mass circulating e-mail which offers advise on who to contact at Costco:

Friends,

Such a simple action! I called 425-313-8100 and spoke with Mark DeCosta in produce. I told him that I was calling because I saw that Costco was selling clementines from Israel. I explained very politely that there is an international boycott against Israeli products because of the ongoing genocide there. I mentioned the attack on Gaza a year ago, that 1,400 people were killed there, and that Israel restricts food, electricity and drinking water. Mark was very receptive, and said he would pass the message o the buyer in California, and also gave me her number. I'll call her tomorrow and would be happy to hear that other folks might do the same.

Buyer: Pat Burlinguette
925-456-7208


Do not underestimate the consequences if a boycott like this has any success. If friends of Israel do not let Costco know that they support the sale of Israel[i products] it would not be a surprise if the company decides to forgo selling Israeli products.

We need to contact Costco and let them know that we will shop there because they sell Israeli products. When I told my wife about the boycott, she immediately responded that she was getting a Costco membership and she will buy the clementines "Even though I don't like clementines. "

Information about contacting Costco can be found here.

This boycott is part of an international cultural and academic boycott of Israel.

We must do all that we can to help Israel fight back.


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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Haiti disaster and the Jewish problem - Exploiting Israeli aid for politics and Israel-bashing

http://zionism-israel.com/israel_news/2010/01/haiti-disaster-and-jewish-problem.html

There is no doubt that Israeli rescue teams have done us proud in Haiti. See for example Israeli aid to Haiti. Israeli disaster missions and humanitarian aid are always given without strings, and the people who do it do not do it in anticipation of cheap "PR" that will improve Israel's "image." Such disaster aid missions have been sent to numerous countries, in addition to ongoing projects that provide cardiologists and opthalmologists to needy patients in developing countries. It is what we do, because that is who we are.
There is no doubt that we want people to see who we are and what we do, but when Haitians were yelling "bravo Israel" Major Zohar Moshe insisted, "It is not about that, it is about saving lives." About 200,000 people are estimated to have perished in the Haiti earthquake. This is a huge catastrophe. To put it in perspective, it is nearly ten times as many fatalities as Israel has suffered in all of our wars in our entire history, and about 70 times the number of fatalities caused by the Jihadist terror attacks of 9-11-01 in the United States.
Regrettably, there are cynical, tasteless and obsessed people do not understand that it is inappropriate to play politics with a disaster of this magnitude. Those who insisted on pointing out that Arab countries did not give aid to Haiti might be disappointed to see a Reuters/IRIN item about Arab aid to Haiti, including a Jordanian field hospital send January 14. This is a world class disaster and everyone should be, and is, pitching in. .
On the other hand, any time is the right time to dump on Israel for some people, and anything we do can be held against us. A CBS blog trumpeted " Pennies for Haiti, Billions for Israel, Egypt, as if US aid to Israel is at fault for the miserable condition of the Haitian economy and society. At least two Israeli Op-eds used Israeli aid to Haiti as an excuse and springboard for discussing what they wanted to discuss, which was totally unrelated. Gershon Baskin whined shamelessly:
But what about the humanitarian disaster in our own backyard caused in a large part by our own doing? What about Gaza? More than 1.5 million people are living in total poverty, without sanitary drinking water, under an economic and physical siege, locked in what could easily be called the world's largest prison. While we ask to see in all of the gory details, all of the destruction including hundreds of corpses on the streets of Port-au-Prince, we wish to see none of the human suffering of our Palestinian neighbors in Gaza where we literally hold the keys to the end of their suffering.
Not only don't we see their suffering, we simply don't care. Doesn't the concept of tikkun olam extend to our enemies? (Not all of Gaza's 1.5 million people are enemies; many of them, perhaps even most of them would like to live in peace with us.)
What has all this to do with Haiti? Absolutely nothing. The only connection is one made by a perverse mind. And what has Gaza poverty to do with Israel? Not as much as you might think. Gaza was not a bustling and advanced part of the world before 1948 or before the arrival of the evil Zionists. The standard of living in Gaza was not better a hundred years ago, and the infant mortality rate was not lower. It was about 300 out of a thousand infants, many times higher than today. Gaza under Egyptian rule was certainly no better than it is today. Tikkun olam does extend to our enemies. IDF set up a field hospital to treat Palestinian victims during Operation Cast Lead (aka "Gaza War of 2008") and Israeli hospitals have been treating Palestinian patients from Gaza even in the worst of times. One of them, as Baskin might remember, tried to use Israeli generosity to blow up Soroka hospital. It really isn't Israel's fault that Palestinians voted for Hamas or that Hamas chose to launch rockets and mortars at our towns. Baskin claims that "we" don't care. Perhaps he speaks for himself. Perhaps he is telling us that he doesn't care either about the suffering of the Palestinians or the dead people in Haiti. To an observer, it looks like he is just using suffering as a device to advance a political agenda - a good "issue."
Yoel Marcus's effort in this direction was less perverse, but it was nonetheless artificial exploitation of a "hot news item" as a springboard for discussing what he wants to discuss.
Every time disaster strikes anywhere in the world, I am filled anew with admiration at how ready and willing we are to assist, and how speedy, effective, organized and wholehearted that assistance is.
We did not rush aid to Haiti because there is a Jewish community there. We went there for humanitarian reasons. As a nation that has experienced disasters and bereavement for generations, other nations' disasters do not leave us indifferent...
It is easier for us to organize rescue operations outside Israel than do all that is necessary to advance peace inside it and thus prevent deadly attacks on our home front..
Well yes. It is also easier to organize rescue operations outside Israel than to fix the road safety problem or the problem of Israeli homeless or any other problem that needs fixing, so the deaths of 200,000 Haitians and the Israeli relief effort can be used as a platform for discussing just about anything you like.
The Hamas got into the act too, forgetting their complaint (Gershon Baskin take note) that Gazans are all starving in the Israeli siege, and launching their own relief effort for Haiti, alleging that the Israeli attack on Gaza was similar to the earthquake in Haiti. Not even Judge Goldstone, imagined that Israel killed 200,000 people in Gaza.
But the icing on the cake, the one that takes the "no good deed shall go unpunished" award, goes to the enterprising conspiracy theorist who came out with the inevitable accusation: the evil Zionists are collecting bodies for illegal organ transplant traffic in Haiti.
Nothing can top that of course, but no doubt something will.
Ami Isseroff

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Haiti - "it's about saving lives"

http://zionism-israel.com/israel_news/2010/01/haiti-its-about-saving-lives.html

In Haiti, a Poignant Rescue Mission Amid 'We Love Israel' Cheers
By Nathan Guttman
Published January 17, 2010.
Port-au-Prince, Haiti — "Tell me please, what day is it? Is it Wednesday?" whispered Franz Gilles, laying in his bed at the field hospital.
"No, it is Saturday," the Israeli doctor standing next to him replied.
Gilles seemed baffled. He turned around and mumbled, "Saturday, oh my God."
The 59-year-old administrative director of the Haitian tax authority spent the past four days buried under rubble, in what used to be his office, across the road from Port-au-Prince's devastated presidential palace. "It was like in a box, then the night came," he later said.
Local rescue workers tried to get Gilles out shortly after the massive, 7.0-magnitude earthquake hit the Haitian capital on January 13, but to no avail. They left their equipment on the ground and went on to rescue others. But three days later, an Israeli rescue mission — part of a 200-member Israeli rescue and relief mission that flew in to Haiti on January 14 — came back to the building, after receiving information that someone was still alive in the building.
"We started looking around, using dogs and listening devices and then we found him," said Major Zohar Moshe, commander of the rescue force. Zohar's team was one component of the rescue mission Israel dispatched to Haiti, a detachment from the Israel Defense Forces Home Front Command that includes engineering, medical, logistics and rescue experts.
This was their first chance to actually find someone they could help.
"I'm always optimistic. You have to be optimistic when you're on a mission like this," he said, as an Israeli military doctor climbed into the rubble to insert an intravenous liquid tube to Gilles arms.
The Israeli rescuers kept on working around the cavity in which Gilles was trapped, cutting through the debris that blocked the entrance. "We tried to talk with him, to keep him awake," said Captain Nir Hazut. "I told him, 'Do you know where we are from? We are from Israel.
Gilles, who all but lost hope to ever get out, replied: "I can't believe it. You came all the way from Israel to save me?" Then he asked for a cell phone to call someone in Israel and say thank you, but rescuers told him that he'd have a chance to do so once he was out from under the debris and safe.
It took more than seven hours of careful digging, and maneuvering through the piles of brick, wood and office stationery, but by day's end, Gilles was out. Bodies of his co-workers, who were not as lucky, were visible through the debris of what was once one of Haiti's main government office buildings.
As Gilles was taken out on a stretcher to the ambulance, the crowd waiting outside the building for hours, broke out in cheers. "Bravo," cried out one, and another led bystanders in cheers "We love Israel; we love Israel."
"It is not about that, it is about saving lives," said Major Zohar Moshe, covered in dirt and sweat after the rescue mission was over, "but it does make us very proud."
A few hours later, in the field hospital set up by the Israeli military, Gilles seemed exhausted, but the doctors said he that in a few days he would be just fine.

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Monday, January 18, 2010

The limits of PC: The forbidden group must come out of the closet

http://zionism-israel.com/israel_news/2010/01/limits-of-pc-forbidden-group-must-come.html

A wonderful age of tolerance has dawned in our time. For most of the inhabitants of the Western world, the bad old days of bigotry and narrow-mindedness are gone.

The multicultural pluralistic politically correct society accepts almost everyone for what they are, and listens respectfully to their opinions. Discrimination against women is forbidden and frowned upon. People of all colors and creeds and nationalities, and with all manner of political beliefs, are respected, listened to and accepted for who they are and what they do. There is only one exception.

The wave of tolerance has spread to every corner of society. The standard bearer of conservative political values in the United States today is a woman - Sarah Palin. Gay people, who once had to hide their secret or face jail terms, have come out of the closet and serve as officials in Europe and the United States. They may even as ministers in churches. African Americans, once called "n****r," are closer than ever to being accepted as true equals in American society. An African American was even elected president.

Practically every creed and every political belief has gained respectability. Adherents of Mao and Stalin can argue their points of view alongside Social Democrats and Christian Democrats. Nobody reminds them of the millions of people who were murdered in the Soviet Union or Maoist China and of all the human misery caused by their "scientific" beliefs.. Let bygones be bygones.

Islamis accepted as a respectable creed, the religion of peace. The president of the United States has said so. Discrimination against people just because they areMuslims is rightly forbidden. Nobody assumes that all Muslims are terrorists or bigots or wife beaters. News reports from Muslim and Arab governments and press are treated with respect, and the Muslim point of view is heard and respected 'round the world.

Even terrorists and advocates of terror get a break. We must negotiate with Iran, accept Iran into the family of nations. Never mind if they sent their terrorist agents to murder US soldiers and violated the immunity of diplomats. Never mind if they are plotting to take over the Middle East. Dialogue with Iran is politically correct. Apologists explain that "militants" are practicing "resistance." Suicide bombers are billed as "altruists" by British professors. Jihadis thought to be not such a bad thing and is preached freely in the capitals of Europe. Respectable organizations recommend recognition of groups like the Hezbollah and the Hamas, who are welcome in many capitals of the world, and get a favorable press from major news media. A conference of such "resisters" was recently held in Beirut, under the auspices of the United Nations.

It is even OK to be Jewish in many circles of society, thoughJewremains a bad word. There is only one political group that is beyond the pale of "politically correct" and outside the bounds of the pluralistic multicultural society: : Zionists. Abortion rights groups and anti-abortionists can lobby for their causes, as can gun manufacturers, those opposed to firearms, Muslim groups and Palestinians. For Zionists, it is forbidden. The pro-Israel "Zionist lobby" conjures up images of a sinister conspiracy to subvert America, worse than anything dreamed up by the Cominform. An entire book and many articles, mostly fiction though not sold as such, have been written about the alleged role of the Zionist lobby in starting the Iraq war and other nefarious deeds. Not a shred of real evidence is offered in any of them, but "everyone knows" it must be true, and it is believed by respected professors and journalists and their students and audiences.

ForZionism and Zionist Israelis there is no quarter and no hope at all. Zionists are blamed for every ill of the world, and accused of every crime including eating babies, poisoning children and killing people to steal their organs for illegal transplant trade. None of this flood of baseless calumny is considered impolite, intolerant or not "politically correct." Zionists are the only group you can seriously dump on in intelligent society without being considered a boor and a bigot.

When a Zionist attempts to speak at a UN meeting, he is silenced. If a Zionist goes to an international conference at Annapolis, sponsored by the United States, he or she must enter by the service entrance, an institution created to separate domestics, menial laborers and other "inferiors" from "respectable" people. Nobody would shake their hands either. We may be about to see more of the same humiliating treatment in a different setting, again under the auspices of the United States, which claims an "unbreakable bond" with Israel. The Palestinian Arabs will not sit in the same room with Zionists, so the United States is trying to arrange "proximity talks." The evil Zionists will sit in one room, and the righteous "moderate" former (?) terrorists of the PLO will sit in another room and formulate their demands. The entire world thinks this is a great concession to the evil, racist, imperialist and colonialist Zionists. What will they talk about? Zionist concessions to the Palestinian Arabs.

If a Zionist product turns up in certain countries, there can be an international scandal. It doesn't bother anyone. In fact, "progressive" groups are working to widen the boycott of Zionists.

If a person admits to being a Zionist, nobody will listen to his or her opinion or version of the facts - it must be "Zionist propaganda." The same is true of news items that originate from "Zionist" sources. If Al Jazeera writes that Zionists committed war crimes in Gaza it is accepted as a fact, even if Al Jazeera also reported that the United States had used atomic weapons in Iraq. Time Magazine and Newsweek then headline fantastic tales of Zionist atrocities in Gaza.

If, on the other hand, the "Zionists" report that they captured a ship bearing a cargo of illicit Iranian arms, and show the arms, marked with the marks of the manufacturers in Iran and bound for the Hezbollah terrorists, it is ignored. It is "Zionist propaganda." At most, it will get a back page headline that states that "Israel claimed that the arms were manufactured in Iran" "Israel claimed that the arms were bound for Hezbollah." Nobody believes it. Nobody will listen to the "tales" of Zionists.

At parties and social gatherings, it is OK to say that you are gay, that you favor Scientology or flat earth theory, that you are a Maoist or a supporter of "rights" for Hamas. You can announce that you believe in anything at all. Say that you are a Zionist however, and the room will become silent. People will change the subject and move away from you. It's not your deodorant.

Everywhere in the world, Zionists have gone to earth, hiding in the closet, avoiding the pernicious Z-word or at most masquerading as "pro-Israel." The BDS (Boycott, Divestment Sanctions) group condemns "imperialism, colonialism and Zionism," and presumably also pedophilia and necrophilia, though the latter are not mentioned. The Friends Society approves of this program and joins the BDS in their demonstrations in support of the Hamas. It doesn't matter what Zionists really do or what they really think, just as it didn't matter who Paul Robeson was in the bad old days. He had the wrong skin color and that was enough. It didn't matter what George Washington Carver did, he could not be served in the white section of an Alabama cafe. It doesn't matter what Zionist scientists invent, or how many children are saved by Zionist cardiologists who give their time to Save a Child's Heart, or how many people regain their sight thanks to the "international Zionists" of Eye from Zion.They are still Zionists.

It doesn't matter how much aid the Zionists or the "Tel Aviv government" give to disaster victims in Haiti or Turkey or Kosovo, regardless of whether those people support Israel or Zionism. "Zionism" is a dirty word, and Zionists are thought to be in the moral category of Nazis and are in fact compared to Nazis. The very word "Zionism" conjures up the worst associations: racism, colonialism, apartheid, imperialism. A retired SS Obersturmbahnfuhrer may get fairer treatment in the foreign press than an IDF officer. Former Nazi officers are presumed innocent until proven guilty, a courtesy not afforded to Zionist "war criminals" in many publications.

It doesn't matter how many Palestinian Arabs are treated in Israeli hospitals, or how much humanitarian aid Zionists give to Gaza. It makes no difference how many Zionists demonstrate for peace. Zionists are Zionists. They must be boycotted and ostracized. A Zionist, in the popular imagination, is a person with horns and a tail, a religious fanatic who wants to bring about the end of the world (never mind that Zionism is a secular ideology either).

The president of the United States, who has made so many eloquent pleas on behalf of the religion of Islam, would not dare to urge the world to accept Zionists as human beings, to listen to what we have to say as equals. The discrimination is institutionalized and is not confined to Arab countries. Israel is probably the only major country that has never yet had a rotating seat in the UN Security Council. "Everybody knows" that "Zionism is Racism" even if the odious UN resolution on that subject was repealed. The repeal too, is ascribed to a dark Zionist conspiracy. Zionists are held responsible for the terror bombings of 9-11 and the terror attacks in Mumbai, even if Muslim terrorists confessed proudly to perpetrating them.

San Francisco, the home of gay pride and Politically Correct ideas, the supposed bastion of tolerance and multicultural pluralism, is paradoxically probably the worst place in the United States to be a Zionist. Can you imagine a "Zionist Pride" parade in San Francisco?

"Zionism," which should be a source of pride to all its supporters - Jews and non-Jews, has instead been turned into an affliction that no-one dares to speak its name, worse than the "C" word. This has happened because of the work of a small group of dedicated bigots, fanatics and terrorists, who never lose an opportunity to blacken Zionism and Zionists with every calumny. They have managed to make their bigotry and hate respectable and accepted, because you and I let them do it.

Don't you think it is time to end the witch hunt against Zionists? I am proud to be a Zionist. I am proud of the Zionist tradition of construction and renewal, of defense of the rights of the Jewish people, and of Tikkun Olam (social justice) around the world. I am proud of the country that we built from scratch, against tremendous odds, and the new lease on life that we have given to our people. I am proud of the kibbutzim as an ongoing experiment in social justice and democracy. I am proud that Israeli Arabs have more freedom and more protection under the law than Arabs do in any other country in the Middle East. Aren't you? I am proud that Israel is the only country in the Middle East where no members of any religion are treated as dhimmi - second class citizens. I am proud of the fact that Israel is the only country in the world that has more trees today than it did a century ago - a consequence of the "Zionist plot." I am a Proud Zionist. Aren't you?

If you are afraid to stand up for what you believe, you are not free. You can't hide what you are forever. I am not afraid to say I am a Zionist. How about you?

It is time to tell the world, "We are proud to be Zionists. Zionism is not what you think it is. It is not about eating babies and poisoning wells. It is a progressive national movement like any other. and it has done wonderful things!"

Please help us end the persecution of Zionism. Zionists have to come out of the closet. If we don't stand up for what we believe, nobody else will. Read the Israel Advocacy Handbook to learn the Zionist side of the story. Spread the word for "Zionist Pride." Join the Facebook Zionism Cause ( http://apps.facebook.com/causes/causes/73516 ) and invite others - help us explain to people what Zionism is really about.

As for the rest of you, you may disagree. After listening respectfully, you may believe that Jews are not entitled to a homeland of our own- that it is too much of an inconvenience to the world, or that it causes too much strife. We cannot force you to support us.
If you disagree, blame us only for what is really our fault and what we really believe - in the right to self-determination of the Jewish people. Don't make us out to be racists or imperialists or colonialists, body snatchers or baby eaters or initiators of wars in Iraq. Don't lock us out of the room and out of legitimate public discourse. We ask only that you grant us the same rights and the same hearing, the same legitimacy and respect that you grant so willingly to advocates of flat earth theory, Jihadism, Maoism and any other group or political movement that you may or may not support.
.
Ami Isseroff

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Monday, December 21, 2009

Kuwaiti Daily Al-Qabas on "the Zionist Cockroach"

http://zionism-israel.com/israel_news/2009/12/kuwaiti-daily-al-qabas-on-zionist.html

i think he means this as an insult mehitabel.

archie

Kuwaiti Daily Al-Qabas on "the Zionist Cockroach"

In a December 11, 2009 column titled "The Zionist Cockroach" in the Kuwaiti daily Al-Qabas, Kuwaiti columnist Fakhri Hashem Al-Sayyed Rajab compared the Zionists to cockroaches capable of survival in any situation, and said that they used dishonorable means to assure their continued existence. He wrote that the Zionists had taken over the world and caused everyone worldwide to hate the Arabs and the Muslims, while the Arabs failed to display a unified stance and kept their reaction to themselves. "There are [various] types of cockroaches: wingless, winged, German, American, Asian. Cockroaches are among the most primeval of the earth's creatures; they can withstand harsher conditions than any other creature, and adapt rapidly to their environment. They say that there are 4,000 kinds [of cockroaches]. The cockroach can survive a week or two without its head, and a month without food. It can withstand many times more radiation than a human can, and will fight to survive.

"I compare the Zionist to the cockroach: For thousands of years, the Zionist has fought [to remain] alive, by all possible means: plunder, exploitation, deceit, killing, and 'laying [its] eggs' across the world so that its offspring will continue to exist until Judgment Day.

"The Zionists have managed to quietly take over the world, imperturbably... and now they are the most powerful force in the world – not in physical strength and weapons stockpiles, but in their power of thought, economics, and planning in all countries, so that [these countries] obey them, and whoever opposes them must watch out. A simple declaration against them means a cruel attack by them – and antisemites beware!

"Their power, and their veins, branch out to southwards, northwards, westwards, and eastwards, and it was recently learned that the Zionist lobby has infiltrated the British government. An investigation is now underway to uncover where the[ir] funds are coming from and what group is providing support.

"Unfortunately, with us Arabs, everything remains in the heart, even our heartfelt reactions.

"We heard about Switzerland's stance regarding the ban on building new minarets, and we did not hear about the united Arab position condemning this action. None of us disagrees that there is a Zionist cockroach behind every issue that arises and is fabricated against the Arabs, particularly the Muslims. These are the [Zionists'] plans; making the foreign world hate the Arab and Muslim existence; occupying Palestine, the Golan, Sinai, and Lebanon; ; for 9/11, and up to the [Swiss] minaret ban. Maybe in the future they will forbid us from entering their countries.

"Our craftiness is in dance and roulette games; see what [the Zionists] have attained by means of [craftineess in ] science and politics, [and what] we have attained by means of oppression and domination!

"In essence: Woe to the nation whose ignorance has made it the laughing-stock of all other nations!"[1]

Endnote:

[1] A line from a poem by the classical Arab poet Al-Mutanabbi.

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Monday, December 14, 2009

What is Hanukkah about, what is history about and what is David Brooks about?

http://zionism-israel.com/israel_news/2009/12/what-is-hannuka-about-what-is-history.html

David Brooks seems to have created a bit of a stir with his article about the "true" history of Hanukkah. His main controversial but more or less unarguable points are that the Maccabees were "fanatics" who along with their good deeds also did brutal things like forced circumcision, and who revolted against a "superior" Hellenistic civilization, and that the "miracle" of Hanukkah (or "Hannukah" or as some people spell it, "Honnoker") was an invention of religious authorities. .

What Brooks writes is basically more or less true according to recorded history, but recorded history is not always unbiased, and it is certainly not true in a larger sense. Those who compare the Maccabees to current "hard core" settlers are off the mark. The Maccabee revolt was a revolt against foreign oppression, not a revolt against a Jewish government by Jews living as free people. That is the main point that seems to have escaped Brooks. The issue was not eating ham or not eating ham, but rather who makes the decisions in the land of Israel, the Jews or the Seleucid kings. There are other nuances that Brooks missed.

The Seleucid empire of Antiochus was not an enlightened Greek city state, but an Asian despotism of the usual kind that had assumed some of the superficial trappings of Greek culture. There was no great academy in the Seleucid state and there were no philosophers or writers of great literature or splendid architects fostered by that society. It was neither Athens nor Sparta nor Corinth.

Taken out of context, the forced circumcisions practiced by the Hasmoneans are barbaric. But in history, context is everything. When Pliny wrote to Trajan concerning the troublesome Christians, it was considered a hallmark of Roman tolerance that Trajan agreed that those Christians who recanted their faith would not be "punished." The other side of that judgment is of course that those Christians who were steadfast in their faith would be "punished." The "punishment" was death. Circumcision in that context seems to be a fairly mild remedy for religious deviance. The Maccabees, from their point of view, had no choice. The Seleucid rule had split the Jewish people. Those who remained uncircumcised would be lost to the Jewish people. It would be absurd to practice the mores of the 2nd century BC in the twenty-first century, but it would be equally absurd to judge force the mores of the twenty-first century on the Maccabees.

The Maccabean revolt, explained in terms that the New York Times would understand and endorse, was "legitimate resistance to occupation." The fate of Jewish traitors was no different from the fate of French collaborators with the Nazis at the hands of the Maquis. If you liked the American Minutemen, the Maquis and the Partisans, you should love the Maccabees. If you liked Benedict Arnold and Quisling, you will shed many tears for the collaborators killed by the Maccabees.

Brooks should also consider that the things that you are liable to read in the ancient history books, they ain't necessarily so. This cuts in many more directions than he might imagine. Our main source for the doings of the Maccabees and the history of that period is Josephus Flavius. Flavius seems to have been as precise as he could be about material facts that could be checked, but was probably very misleading as to motives and events that could not be checked. He was both a Pharisee and therefore opposed to the Maccabean/Hasmonean dynasty, and a Hellenizer anxious to please his new Roman masters. He had many axes to grind and he ground all of them in his books. Like all ancient histories, they should be treated with respect, but with skepticism.

The "miracle" of Hanukkah was no doubt the Pharisee way of attempting to make a secular celebration "kosher." Later, they took more drastic steps, because any display of national feeling was dangerous. They replaced the feast of Nicanor, celebrating a victory over the Seleucid general, with the fast of Esther, marking the probably mythical events of Purim, and more or less suppressed Hanukkah entirely. The Pharisees were careful to serve their Roman masters in suppressing anything that related to inconvenient manifestations of national spirit.

Brooks should keep in mind that every nation and every faith has edifying miracles associated with their history. Is Brooks going to write next about the issue of George Washington and his cherry tree, or are we going to be treated next to a scientific discussion of whether Jesus Christ was really born on December 24, whether or not there is a Santa Claus and whether or not virgins can give birth to male children, in honor of Christmas? I don't think so. If Brooks is really daring, he can take up the question of flying horses, and examine the story of Muhammad's night journey to Jerusalem on his flying horse (pretty good horse) al Buraq from the point of view of equine aerodynamics, refueling problems, wind resistance etc. It is a poor idea to look a gift miracle or miracle horse in the mouth.

It is very unlikely that Brooks or anyone else will take up subjects that are offensive to the Christian and Muslim religions, or question the national myths of other peoples, or that the New York Times would publish such stories. Why is the Jewish religion different from all other religions, and why is the Jewish people different from all other peoples?

There is a perhaps more to Brooks' innocent-seeming meanderings about Hanukkah than appears at first sight. For Hanukkah, more than any other modern Jewish holiday, was adopted by the Zionist movement as the Zionist holiday. If the Maccabees were benighted fanatics fighting "progress" and enlightenment, then how would David Brooks characterize Theodor Herzl? Is Brooks' article really about oil that lasts or doesn't last eight days and forced circumcision. or is it really about Zionism, Herzl and Ben-Gurion?

Ami Isseroff

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Thursday, November 26, 2009

The little Mumbai survivor - a year later

http://zionism-israel.com/israel_news/2009/11/little-mumbair-survivor-year-later.html

This is the story of three year old Moshe, whose parents were murdered by Islamist terrorists in the Mumbai attack one year ago. Please try to keep this heart wrenching story in mind, when attempting to fathom the cynicism and depravity of those who blame the attacks on the "Mossad" and those who published their evil drivel.
Ami Isseroff
Orphaned Toddler Doing Well a Year After Mumbai Attack
A Year After Parents' Murder by Gunmen, 3-Year-Old Mumbai Orphan Is Doing Well
By SIMON MCGREGOR-WOOD and JORDANA MILLER
JERUSALEM, Nov. 26, 2009 —
Little Moshe's mother and father, Rabbi Rivka and Gabriel Holtzberg, were killed moments after the gunmen entered Chabad House, the Mumbai Jewish community center they ran.
His Indian nanny, Sandra Samuel, found Moshe sitting on the floor beside their blood-stained bodies and, with great presence of mind, whisked him to safety.
Images of the traumatized little boy emerging from the besieged building were soon beamed around the world. His cries for his dead parents days later at a memorial ceremony later broke hearts.
Now, a year after the four-day attacks that began Nov. 26, Moshe and nanny Samuel are still living together in the Israeli town of Afula, in the home of his maternal grandparents, Shimon and Yehudit Rosenberg.
Moshe, 3, is doing well, his uncle, Shmulik Rosenberg, told ABC News this week.
"He started kindergarten in September and is doing well," he said. "He's a very happy child but he still asks about his parents a lot. We tell him they are in heaven."
Samuel, an Indian Catholic, is slowly adapting to life in Israel but plans a vacation to her beloved Mumbai in December. She misses the Indian city's energy and scale, she said. The bond between her and Moshe, who recently celebrated his birthday, is strong and she is committed to staying by the child's side for as long as she is needed, Samuel said.
Meanwhile, Moshe has settled into a touching daily routine.
"Every day, when Moshe wakes up, he looks at a picture of his parents and says good morning," uncle Rosenberg said. "And before he leaves the house, he says goodbye to them in the same way."
Although Moshe is beginning to lead a normal life, his uncle said, memories of that fateful day still haunt him.
"He remembers some of what happened even though he doesn't understand," Rosenberg said of the shooting and bombing attacks that killed at least 173 people. "For example, he'll say, 'Why did they [his parents] fall on the ground? Why did they look so sad? And why didn't they answer me when I called out to them."

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Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Good news for Jews - we're taking over Britain

http://zionism-israel.com/israel_news/2009/11/good-news-for-jews-were-taking-over.html

According to UK Channel 4, the "Israel Lobby" (AKA World Jewish conspiracy) is poised to take over Britain when and if the Conservative party comes to power, since an all powerful Jew conspiracy has permeated the corridors of British power. The next British monarch will be Ikey I, by the grace of God, King of Great Britain, and the Menorah will be printed on British bank notes. The Channel 4 documentary evidently has compiled a list of the Jew lovers in the Conservative party, preparing to subvert the innocent British people, about to pass legislation that forces pubs to serve Manischewitz wine and kosher snacks. It must be the influential Jewish conspiracy that is responsible for tacit recognition of Sharia law and other pro-Zionist moves of the Zionist Occupied British government. The same Jew lobby was no doubt responsible for the spate of British Boycott Israel initiatives. Them Jews will get you every time, right?
Or is the documentary evidence of a quite different trend in Britain? What do you think?
Ami Isseroff
Israel lobby 'big influence in UK'
The programme links Hague, left, and Cameron to the Conservative Friends of Israel [EPA]
A British documentary has alleged that any future Conservative government will be disproportionately influenced by a powerful pro-Israeli lobby in the country.
Channel 4's Dispatches programme on Monday said that at least half of the Conservative shadow cabinet are members of the Conservative Friends of Israel (CFI), one of a number of pro-Israel lobby organisations.
The prorgramme, entitled 'Inside Britain's Israel Lobby', said that such organisations make up "one of the most powerful and influential political lobbies in Britain", but that "little is known" about these groups and their associated individuals.
CFI members and their businesses are alleged to have donated more than $16.8m to the Conservative Party over the past eight years.
The alleged donations include tens of thousands of pounds to William Hague, after he was appointed shadow foreign secretary in 2005.
The documentary alleged that Lord Kalm, a CFI member and significant donor to the Conservatives, threatened to remove Hague's funding after he said that Israel had used "disproportionate" force during its war in Lebanon in 2006.
David Cameron, the Conservative leader, is alleged to have promised not to repeat the conjecture.
'Transparent'
Stuart Polak, CFI's director, disputed the figures in the UK's Guardian newspaper.
"CFI as an organisation has donated only £30,000 [$50,000] since 2005. Each of these donations has been made transparently and publicly registered," he said.
"In addition to this £30,000, it is undoubtedly the case that some of our supporters have also chosen, separately, to donate to the party as individuals."
The Dispatches documentary also claims that Poju Zabludowicz, a Finnish billionaire and chairman of Bicom (the British Israel Communications and Research Centre), gave $25,000 and $84,000 donations to Cameron and the Conservative Central Office respectively.
Zabludowicz has a business interest in a shopping centre in Ma'aleh Adumim, an Israeli settlement in the occupied West Bank deemed illegal under international law.
Bicom organises briefings on and trips to Israel for journalists. The CFI and the Labour Friends of Israel (LFI) group, which is described in the documentary as "less unquestioning in its support of the Israeli government than CFI", plays a similar role, accounting for 13 per cent of the total number of paid-for foreign trips for MPs and candidates.
'Openness needed'
Zabludowicz told The Jerusalem Post newspaper that the Dispatches programme "seems to have a predetermined agenda".
"Some people have suggested that the production team felt compelled to 'balance out' their two recent programs exposing the footprint of radical Islamism in the UK," he said.
"I come to this conclusion with a heavy heart, having been led [through] a not-so-merry dance over the past 10 days by the programme-makers.
"Bicom is an advocacy organisation. We work with journalists every day. It is in our DNA to put our side of the story forward and to be transparent."
While the programme said that the donations are legal, one of its makers, David Oborne, a political columnist for the British Daily Mail newspaper, said that more needs to be known about the Israeli lobby's workings and power.
"There is nothing resembling a conspiracy," he wrote in the Guardian.
"The pro-Israel lobby, in common with other lobbies, has every right to operate and indeed to flourish in Britain.
"But it needs to be far more open about how it is funded and what it does ... mainly because politics in a democracy ... should be out in the open for all to see."
In 2006, Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer, two American academics, released a paper stating that Washington's support for Israel was predicated by a hugely powerful Israeli lobby in the US.

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