Illustrative. An ‘apartheid wall’ at Cambridge University. Photo: CU Palestine Society / Facebook.
Leaders of the UK’s Jewish community have condemned an academic organization’s decision on Monday to reject an international definition of antisemitism.
Jonathan Arkush — president of the Board of Deputies of British Jews — characterized the University and College Union’s (UCU) decision at its annual congress to spurn the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) description of antisemitism as “retrograde,” “deeply disappointing” and “disgraceful.”
“This resolution seeks to deny victims of antisemitic abuse the right to call it out for what it is — particularly when it is dressed up as extremist and dangerous demonization of Israel or when Jews are harassed or intimidated because of their connections with Israel,” Arkush said.
JNS.org – Sheets of a Torah scroll used around the time of the Holocaust in a Polish city were returned to…
The UCU motion stated that the “[IHRA] definition conflates anti-semitism with criticism of the state of Israel and has been used to intimidate academics who are engaged in activities that are critical of the policies of the Israeli government but that are not anti-semitic.”
It also referred to the opinion of a UK lawyer — obtained by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC) and others, including a group of anti-Zionist Jews, called “Free Speech on Israel” — which claimed the IHRA illegally hinders free speech.
The motion called upon members to report “all repressive uses of the IHRA definition” to the UCU’s national executive committee, which has in turn committed to stand against any university administrative action that “reacts to spurious accusations of anti-semitism by banning speakers who are opposed to the policies of the state of Israel but who have not in any way expressed racism against Jewish people.”
Simon Johnson — the chief executive of the Jewish Leadership Council — told The Algemeiner that the UCU’s decision was “no surprise.”
“We have given up UCU as a lost cause and a hotbed of singling out Israel for delegitimization,” said Johnson, who added that the motion “will have no impact on campus life for Jewish people.”
A separate motion was passed at the congress noting the UCU’s “dismay” that University of Birmingham Professor Kamel Hawwash — vice chair of the British Palestinian Policy Council and a PSC executive board member — was “prevented from entering Israel on 7th April on a trip with his wife and young son to visit relatives in occupied East Jerusalem.”
The UCU said Hawwash was targeted by an Israeli law passed in March banning supporters of the boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign — which the motion referred to as a “non-violent human rights movement” — from entering the Jewish state.
Hawwash thanked the UCU for its support on Twitter.
In 2011, the UCU rejected the definition of antisemitism proposed by the European Union Monitoring Centre on Racism and Xenophobia, which, like the IHRA, considers forms of anti-Zionism to be antisemitic.
United Nations Security Council meeting room. (Bernd Untied/Wikimedia Commons)
If Israel is chosen to fill a seat in the United Nations Security Council it would be a political farce and a scandal, Ahmad Majdalani, member of the PLO Executive Committee, said on Saturday, according to Palestinian news agency WAFA.
Very little has been said in several months about this issue, since Israel’s UN envoy Danny Danon suggested last April that US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley is likely to support Israel’s becoming one of the five members to join the Security Council in 2019.
Netafim was the only global drip-irrigation company participating in the China – Arab Expo of 2016.
Mexichem, a Mexican producer of plastic pipes and one of the world’s largest chemical and petrochemical companies, has won a tender to acquire control of Netafim, the world’s largest manufacturer of drip irrigation products, The Marker reported Monday morning. Mexichem will buy 80% of Netafim for $ 1.5 billion, marking the second time in six years control of Netafim has been transferred.
“No one who comes to us has the right to put their cultural roots or their religious beliefs above our laws.” — Heiko Maas, Justice Minister, Germany.
These extremist “traditions” need to be exposed and rejected. They are actually nothing more than human rights abuses taking refuge under the banner of religion.
“Domestic violence is abuse — plain and simple. It is not, ‘a beautiful blessing’ as the video describes it.” — Michaelia Cash, Minister for Women, Australia.
The destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, Pieter Schoubroeck, circa 1570-1607 (Wikimedia Commons)
Recent archeological excavations at the site of the ancient city of Gezer have confirmed the Bible’s account of the city’s destruction by Egypt through fire.
According to the Bible, Gezer, an ancient Canaanite-Jewish city located halfway between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, was destroyed at the beginning of the 10th century BCE, when the city was conquered and burned by an unnamed Egyptian pharaoh during his military campaign in the land of Israel. The pharaoh then gave the city to King Solomon as the dowry of his daughter. Solomon later rebuilt Gezer and fortified it.
Insufferable traffic jams, growing awareness of healthy lifestyles and the new generation of chic bikes have contributed to the growing bicycle craze that has gripped Israel in the last few years. What once was a children’s activity or a specialized sport now attracts a wide range of cyclists who are part of one of Israel’s biking clubs or professionals commuting to work.
In Tel Aviv, for instance, bikes are a particularly efficient means to beat the traffic and circumvent a shortage of parking
It is an undeniable fact that the Israeli government caved into the religious tenacity of the Muslim side in the Temple Mount dispute. It took less than two weeks of violence to force Israel to admit to the error made by its Cabinet and all the experts with whom it consulted about probable Islamic reactions to placing security apparatus at the entrance to the Temple Mount and the gates of the Old City. There is no question that Israel’s backtracking was humiliating and that it granted a significant victory to Israel-haters.
As the health care debate goes on, Senator Bernie Sanders will toss in a socialized medicine bill.
Bernie’s bill won’t be a realistic piece of legislation. The 1 percenter Socialist from Vermont has three successful bills to his name. Two of those involved renaming post offices. He was a marginal figure during the ObamaCare debate. The financials of the plan won’t work. But they never do.
Last week, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and his security cabinet caved into the demands of the PLO and its partners in Hamas, the Islamic Movement, Jordan, Iran, and Turkey by agreeing to remove metal detectors and other security screening equipment from the Temple Mount. The equipment was installed last month in response to Palestinian incitement and acts of jihadist violence against Israelis, including the murder of two policemen, at Judaism’s holiest site.
Quiet seems to have returned to the Temple Mount and its environs. Could it be that, overall, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu handled the crisis successfully? Or perhaps he made tactical mistakes but succeeded on the strategic level? Or maybe it’s still too soon to say.
But if you’re a card-carrying Netanyahu-hater, you won’t even entertain such questions. Public Enemy No. 1 — the prime minister — always fails, is always venal, incompetent, and destructive. Since it might be hard to sustain this stance against countervailing evidence, below are some pointers on how to remain a good Netanyahu-hater through thick and thin.
Jared Kushner, the man entrusted by the president of the United States with reviving Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations, admitted this week that he had no idea how to do it.
“Everyone finds an issue” that blocks progress, the Trump son-in-law and senior White House adviser complained in a closed-door meeting with a group of congressional interns July 31. He suggested that instead, “let’s focus on, how do you come up with a conclusion to the situation.”