Thursday, March 23, 2017

Convicted terrorist Rasmea Odeh to be stripped of citizenship and deported

Convicted Palestinian terrorist Rasmea Odeh, 69 will plead guilty to unlawful procurement of naturalization, will be stripped of her U.S. citizenship and deported, as part of a plea deal to avoid prison time.

A member of the PFLP terror group, Odeh was convicted of involvement in a 1969 grocery store  bombing in Jerusalem that killed 2 Hebrew University students and injured nine others. Bomb-making supplies were found in her apartment.  She released  after 10 years in prison in a prisoner exchange in 1980. Her co-conspirators bragged about their roles in the attack on Arab language media.

She lied about her status on US immigration forms and was able to become a citizen.

Anti-Israel groups have repeatedly defended the convicted terrorist. She is scheduled to speak at a Jewish Voice for Peace conference later this month.

Rasmea’s defense team have called her plea bargain a “victory”, claiming

Through a massive, organized defense campaign, Rasmea Odeh—a long-time icon of the Palestine liberation movement—is now a name known in every corner of the movement for social justice in the U.S.  From the Movement for Black Lives in Ferguson, Chicago, and beyond, to the call for a global #WomenStrike on International Women’s Day, Rasmea has become synonymous with resilience and resistance. This fight not only brought her story to the U.S. and the world, but also pushed forward the cause of the liberation of Palestine.

Wishing the forces of hate and intolerance many more such "victories".

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Mezuzzah burning at UC Hastings

Another act of anti-Semitism in our local community, the oh so tolerant and inclusive Bay Area.

A student at UC Hastings reported his mezuzah on the doorframe of his McAllister Tower campus housing had been set on fire. It is being investigated as an anti-Semitic hate crime.

UC Hastings Chancellor David Faigman sent out a letter to students, faculty and staff  condemning this “cowardly act of anti-Semitism.”

“I am deeply troubled by the possible implications of such an act on our campus,” Faigman wrote. “We will not tolerate hateful actions of any sort against members of our community. UC Hastings is dedicated to the principals of diversity and inclusion.”

Anyone with more information is urged to call UC Hasting campus police at (415)525-4611

Monday, February 20, 2017

Israeli born Ovadia Brothers wow New York's fashion week

Israeli twins and fashion designers Shimon and Ariel Ovadia have been wowing audiences during New York Fashion Week.

The brothers, described a few years back by GQ as Best New Designers in America have a fashion line described as “chill and fresh”and having the “exact charm, edge and creativity of New York".  WWD marvels “ how two kids without a college education or any design experience launched themselves from the observant Jewish enclave of Flatbush, Brooklyn, to a Vogue-sponsored fashion show at the Chateau Marmont. And did it without working on the Sabbath.”

From the New York Times, writing about 2017 New York fashion week

The New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz, left, and the rapper Fabolous sat front row.
He went on to praise the fellow New Yorkers, less like a football star than a fashion editor: “I love their aesthetic — from the energy that they put into their clothing, to the silhouettes, to the cuts of their T-shirts. It’s just really beautiful.”

On the same front-row bench sat the rapper Fabolous, who appeared not to mind the fashion-mad fan crawling at his feet, trying to get a clear smartphone shot of his Puma x Trapstar sneakers.


“One thing that Ovadia has is the dope streetwear, but there’s a little touch to it that screams New York City, screams high-end,” Fabolous said. “But it’s still comfortable and casual at the same time.”


Yet the Electronic Intifada’s Ali Abunimah can’t see beyond his seething hatred of the Ovadia Brothers  Jewish/Israeli background, describing their New York Fashion Week lineup as “ racist chic”

Its hard to imagine anyone looking at this gritty, diverse cross-section of New Yorkers and thinking "Hmmmm. Thats racist", but Ali Abunimah manages.

Photo by John Taggart for The New York Times

Could it be this proud homage to the twins Israeli heritage that set him off? Could this mainstreaming of Hebrew, the the language of the Jewish people, have triggered Ali Abunimah's latest outburst?




Perhaps Ali Abunimah would find the designs of Paloma Spain, also exhibited at Fashion Week more to his liking? 




Are Anti-Israel activists attempting to hijack the People's Climate march?

This is how it begins.

The People's Climate March is scheduled for April 29 and we're already seeing the tell-tale signs of infiltration and co-option.

This email is being shuffled around various "social justice" e-lists. Its all about "peace". Sounds innocuous enough, right?

Subject: Sign the petition! Petition to the organizers of the April 29 People's Climate March: Will you stand for peace?


Friend,


I signed a petition on Action Network telling Petition to the organizers of the April 29 People's Climate March to Will you stand for peace?.


Your website at PeoplesClimate.org proposes a march on Washington on April 29, 2017, to "unite all our movements" for "communities," "climate," "safety," "health," "the rights of people of color, workers, indigenous people, immigrants, women, LGBTQIA, young people, and more," "jobs and livelihoods," "civil rights and liberties," "everything and everyone we love," "families," "air," "water," "land," "clean energy jobs and climate justice," to "reduce greenhouse gas and toxic pollution," for "a transition to an equitable and sustainable New Energy and Economic Future," "that every job pays a wage of at least $15 an hour, protects workers, and provides a good standard of living, pathways out of poverty, and a right to organize," "massive investments in infrastructure systems from water, transportation, and solid waste to the electrical grid and safe, green building and increasing energy efficiency that will also create millions of jobs in the public and private sector," . . . but not peace. We wish to make you aware that approximately half of federal discretionary spending is going into wars and war preparation, and that this institution constitutes our single biggest destroyer of the environment. More on that here. Will you please add "peace" to the list of things you are marching for? If you will, it will become a list of things that WE are marching for, as we will join you.


This email originated with "World Beyond War"

The advisory board of World Beyond War includes anti-Israel activists who were involved with the Gaza flotilla,  including Mairead Maguire,  Medea Benjamin, Ann Wright and Kathy Kelly. Their support and participation in the flotilla, a challenge to the sovereignty of the state of Israel and its right to secure its own borders cheapens their talk of "peace". These are people that reject the existence of a nation state of the Jewish people within  ANY borders. Their vision of "peace" is a world without Israel.

This is the genesis of how a well-meaning and singularly focused event gets hijacked by the anti-Israel cru. If the People's Climate March agrees to add "peace" to their agenda, it opens the door to groups like World Beyond War, who will no doubt offer to provide signage and speakers that will invariably alienate the Climate march core.

Stay in your lane, People's Climate March.  Don't allow groups with an extremist agenda to hijack your message.  We've seen this happen before.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

2016. A year of BDS fails

The Electronic Intifada's "Rah Rah BDS is on a roll" end of the year list was particularly subdued this year. (No, I don't link to hate sites) 

My comments in BOLD

Electronic Intifada claims: Activists rose up against Hewlett Packard. Campaigners in dozens of cities across six continents participated in an international week of action against Hewlett-Packard...

Yes, some cities had as much as a half dozen people holding signs.  And there was a hashtag. And a petition, too.  The net result?  See for yourself.






Electronic Intifada claims: Spanish municipalities declared themselves “apartheid-free zones.” More than 50 cities across Spain now declare themselves free of Israeli products in a campaign that began in July 2014...

Oops.  The Electronic Intifada left out a crucial bit of BDS fail information. From the October 5,  2016 J Post


In a massive blow to the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement, a Spanish High Court of the Asturias region, upheld a decision last week, declaring a Langreo City Council agreement to boycott Israel illegal.


This marks the first time that a High Court in Spain has issued a judgment relating to BDS, thanks to the legal actions brought forth by ACOM, a pro-Israel lobby group working to combat BDS in Spain


Electronic Intifada claims: Churches continued to mobilize for Palestinian rights. Denominations voted in 2016 to boycott Israeli financial institutions, and to dump or bar investments in corporations that profit from Israel’s occupation.


A  single church in California vowed not to purchase supplies from Hewlett-Packard, a company that provides equipment to Israel’s military and settlements. This was a church that had previously taken a strong anti-Israel stand, and frequently hosted extremist speakers.


Electronic Intifada claims: Activists helped defeat anti-BDS legislation. Grassroots campaigners fought back against a growing wave of legislation promoted by US state and federal lawmakers – and encouraged by Israel lobby groups and the Israeli government – to suppress BDS activism.

Grassroots campaigners fought back and lost. 14 states have passed anti-BDS legislation


In May, lawmakers in Ontario, Canada’s most populous province, made history: theirs was the world’s first full legislature to vote down an anti-BDS law...


Oops.The Electronic Intifada left out another crucial bit of BDS fail information. In December Ontario has become the first Canadian province to reject the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement


Electronic Intifada claims: G4S was forced to buckle under BDS pressure. Under years-long pressure by grassroots campaigns, the world’s largest private security firm, G4S, ditched most of its Israeli businesses.


The global security firm G4S sold its business in Israel as part of a portfolio review. 60 other businesses were sold as well.   The G4S statement on the sale 
G4S reiterates that it does not support the anti-Israel boycott by BDS or any other group. The decision to sell G4S Israel was made on strategic and commercial grounds as part of a portfolio management program established by the company in 2013. Under its portfolio program G4S has sold or identified for sale 65 businesses which have combined revenues of £1.6 billion.
G4S also rejects BDS comments relating to the conduct of business by G4S Israel. As numerous independent reviews have confirmed, G4S Israel operates to the highest business standards. G4S Israel is a well-managed business that will grow and prosper under the right new owner, providing a positive future for our 8,000 colleagues in Israel and long-term service and support for our customers.
Electronic Intifada claims: Students stood strong. Students in the US, Canada and the UK passed strong divestment measures in their student governments and trade unions, amidst intensifying smear campaigns by outside Israel advocacy groups and shady websites.
Students in the US, the UK and Canada also rejected divestment measures. There is no indication that a single dollar of university money has ever been divested from targeted businesses 

2016 was also a year when a record-breaking $1.127 billion in Israeli bonds were sold in the U.S. Since the program began in 1951, there have been over $40 billion dollars in global sales of Israeli bonds.  Sorry, Ali. Clearly rumors of Israel's impending isolation are overstated.

Friday, February 17, 2017

The University of California and Israel’s Innovation Authority sign cooperation agreement

A major BDS fail from the University of California. While the students keep discussing what brand of hummus they want in their dining halls, the grown-ups are hard at work.

Press Release from the UC Office of the President  Friday, February 17, 2017


With the goals of fostering technological innovation and boosting research and development, the University of California has signed a memorandum of understanding with Israel’s National Technological Innovation Authority to increase cooperation between the two entities.

The memorandum aims to identify opportunities for projects, partnerships and collaborations between UC and Israel’s Innovation Authority that may lead to innovative technologies and products with the potential for commercialization in the global market.

“This agreement aligns with UC’s larger efforts to build relationships with state, national and international partners to propel the many discoveries and innovations from our campuses, labs and medical centers into the world economy,” UC President Janet Napolitano said. “Developing groundbreaking technologies that can be put to practical use around the world is central to our mission as a public institution, and we’re delighted to have Israel’s Innovation Authority as a partner in this mutually beneficial endeavor.”

“This is a great opportunity for bilateral research and development projects that will combine state of the art technology from the UC system with the capability of Israeli companies,” said Avi Hasson, chairman of Israel’s Innovation Authority. “The economic fruits of collaboration with this large and impressive California environment will certainly play an instrumental role in helping these companies to increase their competitiveness and accelerate commercial success in global markets.”

As part of the agreement, UC and the Innovation Authority will boost cooperation through increased bilateral meetings and information sharing. It comes on the heels of a similar memorandum signed between the state of California and Israel on bilateral cooperation in industrial research and development.

“The memorandum of understanding with the University of California is yet another important step forward in the ongoing effort to bring Israel and California closer,” said Andy David, consul general of Israel in San Francisco. “As two global leaders of innovation, this collaboration is a natural one that can enhance our mutual goal of creating a better world for everyone.”

From the Daily Cal


The University of California signed a memorandum of understanding with Israel’s National Technological Innovation Authority to expand collaboration between both parties.

The memorandum was signed with the intention of cultivating technological innovation, research and development, according to a UC Office of the President press release.  The agreement further aims to promote projects between the university and Israel’s Innovation Authority that would lead to “commercialization in the global market,” the press release stated.

Part of the agreement involves an increase in bilateral meetings and information sharing between both bodies.

“This agreement aligns with the university’s objectives of steering UC inventions through our labs and into the world economy,” said UCOP spokesperson Ricardo Vazquez in an email. “We believe that this will be a mutually beneficial partnership.”

Vazquez cited the January 2014 UC-Mexico Initiative as an example of the university’s cooperation with other nations and states in a variety of fields. According to Vazquez, the collaboration between the university and Israel’s Innovation Authority is founded on similar principles.

The memorandum between Israel and the university comes almost three years after a similar memorandum between Israel and the state of California, based on collaboration in industrial research and development.

Monday, February 13, 2017

US Military Assistance to the World

Lies, Damned lies and Statistics.

A recent perspectives paper from the BESA Center gives surprising insight into the frequently heard claim that Israel is the leading recipient of US aid.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: Many American detractors of Israel begin by citing that Israel receives the lion’s share of US military aid. The very suggestion conjures the demon of an all-powerful Israel lobby that has turned the US Congress into its pawn. But these figures, while reflecting official direct US military aid, are almost meaningless in comparison to the real costs and benefits of US military aid – above all, American boots on the ground. In reality, Israel receives only a small fraction of American military aid, and most of that was spent in the US to the benefit of the American economy.

Countless articles discrediting Israel (as well as many other better-intentioned articles) ask how it is that a country as small as Israel receives the bulk of US military aid. Israel receives 55%, or $US3.1 billion per year, followed by Egypt, which receives 23%. This largesse comes at the expense, so it is claimed, of other equal or more important allies, such as Germany, Japan, and South Korea. The complaint conjures the specter of an all-powerful Israel lobby that has turned the US Congress into its pawn.

The response to the charge is simple: Israel is not even a major beneficiary of American military aid. The numerical figure reflects official direct US military aid, but is almost meaningless compared to the real costs and benefits of US military aid – which include, above all, American boots on the ground in the host states.


According to America Unniversity's Prof.David Vine,  the 150,500 American troops stationed in seventy countries around the globe costs the American taxpayer an annual $ US 85-100 billion. 800-1,000 American soldiers stationed abroad represent US$565-665 million of aid to the country in which they are located.

Using the Vine formula: 

Japan’s US military aid package is nine times larger than that of Israel.
Germany’s US Military aid package is seven times larger than that  of Israel.
Italy’s  US Military aid package is twice times larger than that of Israel.

From the Elder of Ziyon:

Keeping in mind that 75 % of the US military aid to Israel never leaves the US and benefits the US economy with thousands of American jobs, US military aid to Israel remains a bargain.  


Sunday, February 5, 2017

New Yorkers take matters into their own hands

The passengers on New York's uptown 1 line at 50th Street looked around in shock. Every window and every advertisement on the train was covered in vile anti-Semitic graffiti, with swastikas and slogans including "Destroy Israel, Heil Hitler," and "Jews belong in the oven." 
Then they sprung into action.

From the Facebook page of Gregory Locke:


I got on the subway in Manhattan tonight and found a Swastika on every advertisement and every window. The train was silent as everyone stared at each other, uncomfortable and unsure what to do.
One guy got up and said, "Hand sanitizer gets rid of Sharpie. We need alcohol." He found some tissues and got to work.
I've never seen so many people simultaneously reach into their bags and pockets looking for tissues and Purel. Within about two minutes, all the Nazi symbolism was gone.
Nazi symbolism. On a public train. In New York City. In 2017.

"I guess this is Trump's America," said one passenger. 

No sir, it's not. Not tonight and not ever. Not as long as stubborn New Yorkers have anything to say about it.



Check out the Times of Israel  and NBC News for more on this story.  There has been a recent spike in antisemitic activity nationwide following  Novembers election.


Why is Jewish Voice for peace hosting an unrepentant Jew-killer at their annual conference?

Edward Joffe and Leon Kanner were friends and classmates at Hebrew University. On February 21, 1969 they were murdered by a terrorist bomb placed in a Jerusalem grocery store.

Rasmea Odeh was convicted of placing the bomb.


Photo from Legal Insurrection

The death of Edward Joffe and Leon Kanner, and why their murderer walks free today has been covered extensively by the blog Legal Insurrection

Rasmea Odeh prosecutors: At new trial, we’ll prove Rasmea was a terrorist

The Sickening Deification of Rasmea Odeh


In spite of the overwhelming evidence of her involvement in the Jerusalem terror attack, Rasmea Odeh is free today and living in America. She has resurfaced because of allegations of immigration fraud- her role in the murders and her involvement with the PFLP terror group were fraudulently left out of her immigration request.


Photo from Legal Insurrectionvictims of Ramea Odeh Edward Joffe and Leon (“Arie”) Kanner

The question remains: Why is Jewish Voice for peace hosting this unrepentant Jew-killer at their annual conference?








Thursday, January 26, 2017

Israel: Inspiring people across the globe

The start up nation , Israel continues to inspire and influence people across the world

Last year, Abhinav Kukreja, Anish Prabhu and Aryaman Dalmia, all students at  UC Berkeley students launched  “Moonshot”, a company dedicated to connecting startups in India with resources in Silicon Valley.

The accelerator program was designed to help connect startups in India with interns, mentors and investors.

Aryaman Dalmia, in the student newspaper at UC Berkeley, the Daily Cal mentioned

...that he was inspired by Israel’s connections with U.S. companies. He said Israel does not have many domestic investors, but because of outside investment from the United States, Israeli companies have funding. He said if Israel can do this successfully, India should be able to do it as well.

Read all about it here

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Israel. Still the only democracy in the Middle East

The Economist Intelligence Unit's Democracy Index rates 167 countries scored on a scale of 0 to 10 based on 60 indicators

In 2016, Israel was ranked as a flawed democracy,  with scores increasing steadily over the past few years.


The Palestinian  territories remain in free-fall, without an election in sight.

Israel. Still the only democracy in the Middle east.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Linda Sarsour gets burned on Twitter

Check out this interchange on Twitter, documented by the indomitable Chloe Valdary

Linda Sarsour, one of the co-organizers of this weekend's Woman's march is touting Saudi Arabia as a feminist, um, Mecca.

She tweets "10 weeks of PAID maternity leave in Saudi Arabia. Yes paid. And ur worrying about women driving. Puts us to shame"

In response, Israeli Dani Dayan tweets back "Well in Israel women enjoy 14 weeks of PAID maternity leave AND drive".

Gotcha!


Friday, January 20, 2017

Anti-Trump protests hijacked by Israel- haters. Could have seen that coming.

Via Emunah

First the Palestinians  hijacked airplanes. Now they hijack agendas.

Its happening again.

We saw this with first with the local anti-war movement. We saw it with Occupy and with Black Lives Matter. And we are seeing it with the anti-Trump protests, as the San Francisco Israeli consulate is targeted in this afternoon’s protest.



San Francisco Israeli Consulate targeted  in anti-Trump protests 


Palestinian Flag at anti-Trump protest in San Francisco

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

US Israel Technology event in San Francisco

Check out what the start up nation has to offer, and see the hottest examples of Israeli innovation close to home.

The 23th 'US – ISRAEL Technology event' will be held on February 2, 2017, at the San Francisco offices of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman 4 Embarcadero Center 22nd Floor San Francisco

The announcement follows:

When six of the ten companies on Forbes’ “Top 10 Health Tech Changing the World” are Israeli, it’s fair to say that Israel is not only the Startup Nation, but the Health Tech Nation as well. Israeli technologies overwhelmed the list not only with the variety of life-saving applications, but their ingenious and innovative way of doing so as well

According to the PwC Israel 2015 Hi-Tech Exit Report, mergers and acquisitions accounted for $7.2 billion in 2015, 44 per cent more than the preceding year. Total initial public offerings in the life science sector went up from $1.3 billion in 2013 to $3.6 billion last year

Israel boasts the world’s highest concentration of high-tech startups per head and almost 1,000 new companies are launched there every year*. Venture investments in Israel-based companies have not only increased in the number of deals – with a near 40% rise quarter on quarter, but they have more than tripled the total amount invested in Q1 of 2015.

This dramatic rise in investment has fueled an Israeli startups and has firmly established the region as one of the world's hottest centers for online and internet technology innovation and development.

Selected delegates will present the latest in Israeli MedTech technology : We expect the upcoming event to provide a great opportunity to identify breakthrough solutions.


1# Session
09:00 – 09:15 Registration & Networking
09:15 – 09:30 Welcome remarks
Mr. Michael J. Torosian, Partner - Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
Mr. David Hava, CEO - MIW
09:30 – 10:00 Israeli companies presentations
10:00 – 12:00 One-to-one meetings

2# Session
12:00 – 12:15 Registration & Networking
12:15 – 12:30 Welcome remarks
Mr. Michael J. Torosian, Partner - Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP
Mr. David Hava, CEO - MIW
12:15 – 12:30 Israeli companies presentations
12:30 – 15:00 One-to-one meetings
15:00 End

Registration information is available here

Anti-Semitic flyers found in UC Bekeley printers and fax machines. Again.

Over the weekend, UC Berkeley computers, printers and faxes throughout the campus were found with flyers described as "anti-Semitic and homophobic". The flyers included swastikas and pro-Nazi propaganda.

Because the sender exploited open source printers and fax machines that were legally accessed via the internet and the machines were not hacked,  this act is not considered a hate crime. There was a similar incident in March of 2016 targeting Berkeley and other universities across the country.

UC police Sgt. Sabrina Reich  speaking to the East Bay Times  said that UC’s Internet Services and Technology Department has been communicating with the offices and departments on campus to “provide information on how to update the settings on (the machines) so they can be better secured on the network.”

“This is not something we welcome in our community,”

In the UC Berkeley student paper, the Daily Cal, Campus spokesperson Roqua Montez stated  “The UCPD was immediately called and took whatever info they could find about who could be behind this...The next step was to work with the IT department to patch those vulnerabilities."

Please contact the campus police at 510-642-6760 if you have any information about the origins of the flyers.

Bomb Threats force evacuations at 2 Bay area Jewish institutions

The Osher Marin Jewish Community Center in San Rafael was evacuated after it received a bomb threat at 8:45 this morning.  It was one of 32 Jewish institutions in 16 states threatened today. The Ronald C. Wornick Jewish Day School in Foster City was also targeted.   Today's threats follow a January 9th wave of 16 bomb threats also directed towards Jewish community institutions.

Occupants of the San Pedro Road Jewish Community Center were taken to a nearby Marin School. Other nearby schools were placed on lockdown as a precaution.

Similar bomb threats called in today to Jewish community centers, schools and other institutions in Miami; Edison, New Jersey; Cincinnati and Alabama,  Albany, New York, Nashville; suburban Boston and Detroit; West Hartford, Connecticut, and Orlando.



Monday, January 16, 2017

Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists at it again

Via Emunah:

The Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists is intent on proving that the fetid intersection where the hard left and the hard right meet is anti-Semitism. They'll be hosting anti-Israel activist Alison Weir for a talk on....wait for it...pro Israel activism. Alison's appearance at the BFUU  is part of a rather disturbing pattern of behavior at the fellowship, which has previously hosted holocaust denier and 9/11 truther  Ken O'Keefe  (We didn't know he was anti-Semitic. Really we didn't!) and Gilad Atzmon (We didn't know he was anti-Semitic! Really, we didn't!) 

Alison Weir is the former editor of a Marin penny-saver, who has catapulted 2 trips to the Mid-east into a career.  She is the executive director of If Americans Knew, run out of her Richmond home, and president of the Council for the National Interest 

Alison Weir is a controversial figure, even among her peers. Groups as extreme as Jewish Voice for Peace and Students for Justice in Palestine have publicly distanced themselves from her. If Americans Knew has been condemned for furthering anti-Semitism by the Anti-Defamation League, Jewish Voice for Peace, and the U.S. Campaign to End the Occupation.

From Tablet:

Weir earned this remarkable wall-to-wall opprobrium by promoting anti-Semitic myths, working with white supremacists, and publishing anti-Jewish content on IAK’s web site. Among other exploits:
  Weir published an original blog post on her personal site which justified anti-Semitism by labeling the Jewish “race” as “an object of hatred to all the peoples among whom it has established itself,” In the words of the U.S. Campaign to End the Occupation, the piece “effectively blam[ed] Jews for anti-Semitism.”
  Weir has not only promoted the conspiracy theory that Israel harvests the organs of Palestinians—an update of the medieval blood libel—but has actually asserted the accuracy of the original blood libel itself, which accused Jews of ritually murdering Christian children to use their blood in Passover matzo. (Weir cited the discredited and since withdrawn research of a Jewish writer.)
  Weir has worked repeatedly with white supremacists, while never challenging their bigoted claims. For instance, in a series of appearances on the radio show of white supremacist and Holocaust denier Clayton Douglas, Weir dismissed allegations that he was a racist, did not challenge his repeated assertions of Jewish control of the world, and did not protest when he played a speech by former Ku Klux Klan grand wizard David Duke. Writes the U.S. Campaign to End the Occupation, “Weir made little to no effort to challenge, confront, or rebut any of these views; on the contrary, she continued to appear on the show.”
  Weir has also published repeatedly at the American Free Press, a white supremacist anti-Semitic site that is designated as a hate outlet by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
For these actions and others, both Jewish Voice for Peace and the U.S. Campaign to End the Occupation severed ties with Weir in July 2015. (Though the same cannot be said for many other anti-Israel activists, who continue to defend and even honor Weir.)
From Political Research Associates: Challenging the Right: Advancing Social justice

IAK’s criticisms of Zionism and Israel dovetail with traditional antisemitic narratives, and Weir often cites antisemitic writers and publications as her sources. When asked if the work of antisemitic authors including Israel Shamir, Gilad Atzmon, and Kevin MacDonald were truly legitimate, she replied, “Yes. I suggest people read their work for themselves.”

Much of Alison's past presentations are based on a statistical study she personally undertook, alleging bias in reporting on Israeli and Palestinian dead. Her analysis has been described as "amateurish" and "flawed", with  media watchdog CAMERA concluding 

"Weir's pseudoscientific study and absurd conclusions are not so surprising in light of her history of distortion."

Weir's study claims

 "the Times reported Israeli deaths at rates up to seven to ten times greater than Palestinian deaths," and that this discrepancy is "based on the ethnicity of the person killed."  and that "Times reporting regularly gave readers the impression that equal numbers of people on both sides were being killed – or that more Israelis were being killed," and that "the majority of Palestinian deaths ... are never reported by the Times at all."

However, according to CAMERA:


The bulk of the study is based only on the headline and first paragraph – often just one sentence – of New York Times news reports, and completely ignores the remaining text of the articles. In other words, most of the news reports condemned by the study are not even read.

In an op-ed in the April 4, 2008  Greenwich Citizen,  Alison Weir described Judaism as  "such a ruthless and supremacist faith".

Information on Alison Weir's extremist conspiratorial views are widely available on the Web. Her facebook page, and those of If Americans Knew are filled with anti-Semitic imagery, conspiracy theories and classic Jew-hate 
Study of New York Times Coverage Severely Flawed

Alison Weir posing with convicted Palestinian terrorist Rasmea Odeh
Will the Berkeley fellowship of Unitarian Universalists still claim they didn't know?
Event details:
Thursday, February 16 at 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM PST
Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists
1924 Cedar Street, Berkeley, CA 
(Corner of Cedar St and Bonita Ave)

This talk is free and open to the public. It is sponsored by the Social Justice Committee of the Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists.





Sunday, January 15, 2017

Ari Lesser sings about Martin Luther King.

Check out this new song from Ari Lesser in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. It acknowledges the close bond between the Jewish and black people and the parallels of their history.



To read more about Jewish-Black relations, check out the Jewish Virtual Library 


Years ago, John Lewis described Dr.Kings relationship with the Jewish people in an article published in the San Francisco Chronicle.

He wrote:

The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. understood the meaning of discrimination and oppression. He sought ways to achieve liberation and peace, and he thus understood that a special relationship exists between African Americans and American Jews.
This message was true in his time and is true today.
He knew that both peoples were uprooted involuntarily from their homelands. He knew that both peoples were shaped by the tragic experience of slavery. He knew that both peoples were forced to live in ghettoes, victims of segregation.
He knew that both peoples were subject to laws passed with the particular intent of oppressing them simply because they were Jewish or black. He knew that both peoples have been subjected to oppression and genocide on a level unprecedented in history.
King understood how important it is not to stand by in the face of injustice. He understood the cry, "Let my people go."
Long before the plight of the Jews in the Soviet Union was on the front pages, he raised his voice. "I cannot stand idly by, even though I happen to live in the United States and even though I happen to be an American Negro and not be concerned about what happens to the Jews in Soviet Russia. For what happens to them happens to me and you, and we must be concerned."
During his lifetime King witnessed the birth of Israel and the continuing struggle to build a nation. He consistently reiterated his stand on the Israel- Arab conflict, stating "Israel's right to exist as a state in security is uncontestable." It was no accident that King emphasized "security" in his statements on the Middle East.
On March 25, 1968, less than two weeks before his tragic death, he spoke out with clarity and directness stating, "peace for Israel means security, and we must stand with all our might to protect its right to exist, its territorial integrity. I see Israel as one of the great outposts of democracy in the world, and a marvelous example of what can be done, how desert land can be transformed into an oasis of brotherhood and democracy. Peace for Israel means security and that security must be a reality."
During the recent U.N. Conference on Racism held in Durban, South Africa, we were all shocked by the attacks on Jews, Israel and Zionism. The United States of America stood up against these vicious attacks.
Once again, the words of King ran through my memory, "I solemnly pledge to do my utmost to uphold the fair name of the Jews -- because bigotry in any form is an affront to us all."
During an appearance at Harvard University shortly before his death, a student stood up and asked King to address himself to the issue of Zionism. The question was clearly hostile. King responded, "When people criticize Zionists they mean Jews, you are talking anti-Semitism."
King taught us many lessons. As turbulence continues to grip the Middle East, his words should continue to serve as our guide. I am convinced that were he alive today he would speak clearly calling for an end to the violence between Israelis and Arabs.
He would call upon his fellow Nobel Peace Prize winner, Yasser Arafat, to fulfill the dream of peace and do all that is within his power to stop the violence.
He would urge continuing negotiations to reduce tensions and bring about the first steps toward genuine peace.
King had a dream of an "oasis of brotherhood and democracy" in the Middle East.
As we celebrate his life and legacy, let us work for the day when Israelis and Palestinians, Jews and Muslims, will be able to sit in peace "under his vine and fig tree and none shall make him afraid."

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Harper's Bazaar: Israel is one of 2017's "Best Places to travel"

Attempts to isolate Israel appear to be failing.

Israel has made  Harper’s Bazaar  “Best places to travel in 2017" list

Start your trip in the bustling-metropolis-meets-beach-town of Tel Aviv, but then make sure to explore all that this country has to offer. It would be an unfortunate mistake to fearfully paint this country's complicated politics as war-torn. Don't be fooled; its vibrant culture, phenomenal food scene, historic landmarks, beaches and endlessly impressive hotels are too much of a draw to ignore. Be sure to tour the shuks (markets) and the historic sites in Jerusalem–a trip to Israel is definitely not complete without a visit to the Kotel, the Wailing Wall. (When you visit, cover up as you would any temple–it's a place of prayer). While in town, be sure to enjoy the food; the delicious and dynamic scene at Mahane Yehuda is not to be missed. 

Then, choose your own adventure: head north to experience jeep rides and hikes in the mountains of the Golan, explore Tel Aviv and Jaffa's vibrant food, arts and cultural scene, head to the world-renowned Dead Sea spas in the desert or to Eilat for its hippie, beach vibes. Don't get overwhelmed by the various experiences this country has to offer–you may want to spend 1-2 weeks here to soak it all in, but its size rivals that of New Jersey. If you're looking to be strategic in planning out the right amount of time in each city, consult an expert like Travel Composer (Israel's premiere luxury trip planner) who can also advise on attaching a visit to  Jordan (and if you do, Petra is a must) and/or Egypt, which should also be on your bucket list.

Where to Stay: Israel's ever-evolving food scene is part-in-parcel of its expanding hospitality industry–which is no longer centric to Tel Aviv. The King David Hotel is the unrivaled top of the heap in Jerusalem, and Tel Aviv's boutique hotel The Norman is redefining style and luxury in a culture that is inherently laid-back in vibe. The Efendi Hotel in Akko, an untapped area of the country but well worth a visit, feels like a mix of Moroccan, Latin and authentically Israeli styles with its low-key feel and eclectic dĂ©cor. When in the desert, the Hotel Beresheet in Mitzpe Ramon is the place to book. Located 2,600 feet (800 meters) above sea level on sky-high cliffs that slope down into the desert lands of the Ramon crater, this luxury resort-meets-natural-phenomenon is the kind of experience that will have you wanting to stay forever.

Check out the whole list here

Can you visualize the BDS holes rocking quietly in a dark corner of Mom's basement, muttering "but, but, but...the occupation...."?