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More Antisemitism at Northeastern University

Stephen Director, apologist for anti-semitism at Northeastern

Stephen Director, apologist for antisemitism at Northeastern

Americans for Peace and Tolerance has released a documentary on Northeastern’s Holocaust Awareness Week, and Charles Jacobs has published a column in the Jewish Advocate summarizing his criticisms of it.  In response, Northeastern Provost Stephen Director has complained that Jacobs “cherry-picked his examples”:

In dismissing a dozen examples of intellectual and moral abuse of the Holocaust program at Northeastern as “cherry-picked,” Director expresses either a lack of awareness or a dishonesty about the nature of the intellectual and moral stakes.  That Jacobs could “cherry-pick” any examples of people using this venue at Northeastern to make the morally sadistic comparison of Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians with the Nazis’ treatment of the Jews represents a failure of judgment on a colossal scale.

How can an occupation which systematically exterminated millions of innocent civilians in a matter of three years be compared with one in which the “target” population both grew in number and in prosperity over the course of 40 years?

How can one make such a comparison without including a comparison of how Israel treats its “occupied” Palestinians with how the Palestinian refugees from the 1948 war have been treated by their Arab hosts?  They have been and continue to be far more ruthless and cruel with their own people than the “Nazi-like” Israelis are with the Palestinians.

Comparisons of Israelis with Nazis are not sober assessments of empirical reality — the hallmark of good history and journalism.  They are wild and intentionally debasing accusations — Israel-baiting — made in a moral and intellectual fog.  This represents a disorientation of empirical reality so radical that its prominence on campus needs to be addressed, explained, and corrected, and not covered up with claims of “academic freedom.”

Academics are not “free” to make things up, and universities are not required to give those who do a pulpit.  That, as Stephen Director should in principle know, is a crucial component of the “pursuit of knowledge.”  Instead, in his apologetics, he sounds like the FBI after Waco: “We didn’t do anything wrong, and we won’t do it again.”

We can’t learn from mistakes we don’t admit.

Far from an example of “academic freedom,” this situation is actually the opposite.  The radical voice that compares Israel to the Nazis and tars as “right-wing” those Jews who object has essentially driven the entire political spectrum off-kilter. What Northeastern calls diversity and vigorous debate “in pursuit of knowledge” actually represents the shutting down of precisely the kind of debate that must take place, replacing it with unchallenged intellectual and moral abuse.

Northeastern University - source of holocaust distortionModerate vs. extremist.  Left vs. right.  Dove vs. hawk.  None of these ranges mean anything anymore as a result of the skew those running the Holocaust program at Northeastern bring to the university community.  This skew is reflected in many places, including the news media.  A “moderate” in the Palestinian system (e.g., Mahmoud Abbas) does not translate into a moderate in ours; and a “hardliner” in ours is a (way too) soft-liner in theirs.  Someone who promises his people the land from river to the sea, who demands the ethnic transfer and cleansing of a religious minority from territory he rules, who wants to keep his own people stateless, whose “authorities” bully and intimidate the press, who uses torture against his own opposition?  This is not a “moderate.”

Any Israeli leader with such a record would be immediately branded — by Jews and other Westerners alike — as a vicious fascist.  Of course, in comparison with the genocidal Hamas and Islamic Jihad, Abbas is at least willing to say he’s willing to (maybe) negotiate, and therefore appears on our current skewed political register as a “moderate.”

Benjamin Netanyahu, who allows a much wider range of dissent and lives by far more demanding democratic principles, is branded a “hawkish” right-wing extremist when he resists pressure to compromise with foes.  But since holding Palestinians responsible for their choices — suicide bombing, hate propaganda, river-to-the-sea ambitions — would be blaming the victim, it’s so much easier for the politically correct to blame the “hardliner” Netanyahu for the failure of negotiations rather than the “moderate” Abbas.

As a result of this skew of the political spectrum, for nearly a decade Northeastern’s hijacked Holocaust program repeatedly invited highly politicized, intellectually dishonest, morally hysterical people who demonized Israel and who tried to exclude, silence, and intimidate anyone who defended her.

This is a widespread phenomenon on American and Canadian campuses.  It occurred partly on a public stage — see the attacks on people like Nonie DarwishNetanyahuDavid Horowitz, and Michael Oren – and partly in a private way:  scholars who might challenge these accusations were pointedly disinvited from the discussion.

Northeastern apparently mistakes a situation in which defenders of Israel were systematically intimidated and denied a voice, while rabble-rousers with revolutionary agendas controlled the stage, for a “vigorous exchange of diverse opinion.”

Michael Oren - scholar at Columbia and Princeton, then professor at Harvard and Yale, then Israeli Ambassador to the USA.

Michael Oren - scholar at Columbia and Princeton, then professor at Harvard and Yale. Israeli Ambassador to the USA.

Nothing better illustrates this off-kilter political register than Provost Director’s pointing to Northeastern’s invite of Michael Oren — a scholar of impeccable credentials both as an academic and as a public intellectual — as a balance to Alice Rothschild.  You’d need a Kahanist who wanted to ethnically cleanse the West Bank of Arabs to match her unhinged radical ideas.  And yet, no one at Northeastern is going to defend such a racist “right-wing” speaker on the basis of academic freedom.  So we end up with a spectrum that goes from radical left to a mild, even timid, center – moderates who rather than challenge shrill and dishonest accusations, plead “can’t we all just get along?”

Meanwhile, no one at Northeastern is exposed to anything that is not “peace” oriented.  Heaven forbid students be exposed to evidence that points out how the peace movement has been hijacked in the service of war.

Indeed, one might conjecture about the reason this “vigorous” voice has become so rhetorically extravagant in its insults against Israel and her defenders.  Branding those who object as “racists, fascists, and Islamophobes” serves to intimidate and marginalize an opposition which, if sane people could hear their voice, would lead them to walk away from this deranged anti-Zionist, anti-democratic discourse.

That’s what’s so disturbing about the typical “university” response to objections from Jews regarding the demonizing of Israel: administrators are in total denial about a serious — some of us think urgent — problem on our campuses today.  The voice of a loyal opposition has been banished by the voice of a hostile opposition which uses a discourse that violates so many of the rules of the “public sphere.”

Empirical evidence, disciplined reasoning, honest use of analogies, open and un-coercive consent: these are key elements of the public sphere.  And the public sphere is where a discourse of fairness and empathy takes place, the oxygen supply of our experiment in freedom and prosperity.  Our many “cherry-picked” case studies violate this not on occasion, but as a matter of principle.

Northeastern administrators should consider themselves co-defendants in the recent findings on the administrators at the University of California.  Far from performing their role as the university’s quality control mechanism, they now routinely function as the enablers, protectors, and even apologists for the politicized university and its degraded scholarly and educational standards.

This is not a slip or a stumble.  This is a catastrophic failure of the last generation.  Under the guise of “cutting-edge scholarship” in “theories” (post-modern, post-colonial, queer, etc.), they bring us dishonest, accusing voices that demonize and scapegoat and never self-criticize.  They demand that we believe the voices of the “subaltern” Palestinian “other”; they insist that to question that testimony would be cruel, would be “blaming the victim.”  Accordingly, they pump our information system with poisoned lethal narratives, with icons of hatred which they proudly claim will help make the world a better place.   They represent an insane marriage of pre-modern sadism and post-modern masochism: while Palestinians make the most terrible accusations against Israel, “good Jews” like Alice Rothschild say: “Yes, you’re right, we are terrible.”

(Indeed, one has to wonder what happened to Alice as a “child” according to her own “psycho”-analysis of the abuse syndrome: i.e., Jews, having been abused by Nazis, now abuse Palestinians.  What abuse has Rothschild experienced that she so abuses her own people?  Was it at the hand of her fellow “progressives”?)

This is not just a Jewish question.  What the “Left” has done to Israel, it does to every other Western nation and culture: it insists we liberals, in order to prove our good will, adopt Islamism’s demonizing narratives about the infidel, especially the Jew.  The consequences are terrible for those like we Jewish and non-Jewish liberals who, in a paroxysm of self-critical good will, accept this dishonest and vicious story about ourselves.  But they are in some ways worse for Palestinian, Arab, and Muslim culture, where our acceptance of these hate- and violence-filled lethal narratives strengthens the grip that the producers of this war-mongering propaganda have on their own people.  And in the process, peace is the first and last casualty.

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Honoring All Who Saved Jews

By EVA WEISEL
Khaled Abdul Wahab in 1936

Khaled Abdul Wahab in 1936

IN December 1942, when I was 13 years old, German troops occupied my hometown. Within days, our house was commandeered as an officers’ mess hall. I soon had a yellow star on my dress, setting me apart from many of my childhood friends. The men of our family were ordered into forced labor. My happy life had vanished.

Luckily, an influential local man knew of our difficult straits and generously offered his protection. One night, he ferried the women, children and old men in our family to a farm he owned about 20 miles outside of town. There, he said, we would be safe. Though the stables he provided us for lodging were modest, with just a drape across the door to protect against the elements, we were relieved to be behind the thick, high walls of his property. We were deeply grateful.

As luck would have it, however, a German unit arrived in the area not long after we did. Our host told us to get rid of our yellow stars, stay inside the farm walls and keep far away from the main house. He had his own strategy for dealing with the Germans. A bon vivant and world traveler, he invited German officers for evenings filled with food and drink. While nearly two dozen of us were hiding in one part of the farm, he protected himself from the prying eyes of the Germans by entertaining them on the other side of the farm.

Our host’s strategy worked well, until the night a couple of drunken German officers wandered away from the main house.

In the courtyard outside the stables, they started banging on the courtyard door and shouting, “We know you are Jews and we’re coming to get you!”

My grandmother started screaming “Cachez les filles!” — “Hide the girls!” I remember being shoved under the bed, trembling and sobbing as I tried to hide under a blanket.

At that moment of unspeakable fear, as our hearts pounded and tears poured from our eyes, a guardian angel came to the rescue. Out of nowhere, our host appeared. A strong, powerful man who projected authority and commanded respect, he stopped the Germans and managed to lead them away.

The next day, our host came to the stables. We rushed to express our thanks to him, but he was more eager to apologize to us. He said he was sorry that we had to face the terrifying ordeal of the Germans’ threats, expressed relief that he had intervened in time to prevent a horrible tragedy, and promised that it would never happen again. We never found out how he fulfilled his promise — perhaps he bribed the Germans — but he did. We passed the rest of the German occupation at our host’s farm, without incident.

During the horrors of the Holocaust, non-Jews saved many thousands of Jews from death and depravity at the hands of Germans and their allies. Yad Vashem, Israel’s official Holocaust memorial museum, has recognized more than 23,000 of these brave men and women as “The Righteous Among the Nations.” Our family’s rescuer deserves to be among that number. And in his case, the impact of recognition would have powerful reverberations, striking a blow against Holocaust denial in a part of the world where such denial is widespread.

That is because my hometown is Mahdia, on the eastern shore of Tunisia, and our rescuer, Khaled Abdul Wahab, was an Arab Muslim. (He passed away in 1997.)

So far, however, Abdul Wahab has been denied the recognition he deserves. Nearly five years ago, in January 2007, the Department of the Righteous at Yad Vashem nominated him to be a “righteous,” the first Arab ever to be formally considered for this honor. This nomination was based on witness testimony from my late sister, Anny Boukris. In March of that year, however, the official Commission for the Designation of the Righteous, a body presided over by a retired Israeli judge and created by Israeli law to decide who merits recognition as a “righteous,” voted to reject the nomination. That decision was kept secret for two years.

In 2010, that same jurist, Justice Jacob Tuerkel, sent the Abdul Wahab file back to the commission for a second review. This time, the case was bolstered by two fresh testimonies — a video interview of my cousin Edmee Masliah, who was with me at the farm and now lives outside Paris, and a notarized letter I wrote recounting my own experience. Yad Vashem now had three firsthand accounts of the story. But to my complete dismay, the Commission for the Designation of the Righteous once again voted to reject the nomination. Abdul Wahab was a noble man, I was told by Yad Vashem, but his actions did not rise to the statutory level required to merit the “righteous” designation — that is, he didn’t “risk his life” to save Jewish lives.

While that may be the wording of the law, I am told by experts that Abdul Wahab would not be the first rescuer of Jews not to have suffered physical harm, let alone life-threatening danger. Many in France who have won that designation were honored because they acted to save Jews without knowing for sure what fate would await them if they were caught. In addition, some of the famous diplomats honored as righteous were never arrested, injured or threatened with death for aiding Jews.

I refuse to believe that Yad Vashem has one standard for “righteous” in Europe and another for “righteous” who performed their sacred duty on the other side of the Mediterranean, in an Arab country.

Sixty-nine years after pinning a yellow star to my chest in my native land, I know that I was able to enjoy a long, full life because Abdul Wahab confronted evil and saved me, as he saved other fortunate members of my family. I hope that Yad Vashem reconsiders his case before no one is left to tell his story.

Eva Weisel lives in Los Angeles. She is retired from the banking industry.

 

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Dovid Efune’s Top Ten List

Rabbi Dovin Efune, Director of the Algemeiner Journal, New YorkTop Ten Non-Jews Positively Influencing Jewish Future
By: Rabbi Dovid Efune, Director of the Algemeiner Journal

(The Algemeiner Journal is a weekly Jewish current events newspaper published in New York.  Dovid Efune, originally from Brighton, England, now lives in New York.  He is credited with building the Algemeiner into the fastest growing Jewish newspaper in America.  He received his rabbinic ordination from Machon Lehoroah in Pretoria, South Africa and Machon Ariel in Jerusalem.)

10. Julie Burchill
Columnist and novelist
Currently a columnist for The Independent, she has written for newspapers such as The Sunday Times and The Guardian. The Jewish Chronicle described her in 2008 as ” Israel ‘s staunchest supporter in the UK media.”

9. Jon Voight
Actor
Supporter of Jewish causes, most notably Chabad, Voight is also a prolific spokesman for Israel . A rarity in Hollywood circles, he has advocated for Jewish values, consistently reaching an often indifferent audience.

8. Patrick Debois
Founder, Yahad-In Unum
A Roman Catholic priest, Debois is head of the Commission for Relations with Judaism of the French Bishops’ Conference and Consultant to the Vatican . He is the co-founder and president of Yahad-In Unum, an organization whose mission is to document the murder of the 1.5 million Jews of Ukraine , shot dead by the Nazis and buried throughout the country. This work is vital in ensuring that the memory of these victims will not fade with the death of the last witnesses.

7. John Hagee
Founder, Christians United for Israel
Hagee’s Christians United for Israel continues to experience rapid growth, now boasting upwards of 600,000 members. The group makes significant contributions to Jewish causes, and has become a potent political force in support of Israel . Author of ” Jerusalem Countdown” and “In Defense of Israel ,” the pastor from San Antonio has met with every Israeli prime minister since Menachem Begin and his ministries have given more than $8.5 million to bring Jews from the former Soviet Union to Israel .

6. Warren Buffet
Investor
The famed investor has been a strong supporter of Israeli innovation, and has bought into it significantly. Last year, while visiting the country, he famously said that ” Israel has shown that it has a disproportionate amount of brains and energy.” Buffet’s strong statement of confidence has gone a long way in encouraging significant foreign investment in the Jewish State.

5. Jose Maria Aznar
Former Prime Minister of Spain
In 2010, Aznar founded the Friends of Israel Initiative, with the stated goal to “counter the attempts to delegitimize the State of Israel and its right to live in peace within safe and defensible borders.” Referring to the ill-fated takeover of the Mavi Marmara by Israeli commandos, Aznar said in 2010 that the world must support Israel because “if it goes down, we all go down.” His unique organization provides a strong voice of reason in circles where it might otherwise not be heard. Read the rest of this entry »

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Denis MacEoin Weighs In

Dennis MacEoinDenis MacEoin – Open Letter to the Edinburgh University Student Association on Boycotting Israel
July 27, 2011

Denis MacEoin. In March of 2011 Mr. MacEoin, wrote an open letter to Edinburgh University Student Association.
Middle East Forum – he is a senior editor of the Forum’s flagship publication Middle East Quarterly

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Around 270 students at Edinburgh University voted in favour of a motion which described Israel as an apartheid state and called for a boycott of goods. However, the Jewish Chronicle reports that the Edinburgh University Students’ Association has confirmed a proposed boycott of Israeli products will not be enforced.

Here is a strong argument against the boycott, written by an Edinburgh University alumnus:

The Committee
Edinburgh University Student Association

May I be permitted to say a few words to members of the EUSA? I am an Edinburgh graduate (MA 1975) who studied Persian, Arabic and Islamic History in Buccleuch Place under William Montgomery Watt and Laurence Elwell Sutton, two of Britain’s great Middle East experts in their day.  I later went on to do a PhD at Cambridge and to teach Arabic and Islamic Studies at Newcastle University.  Naturally, I am the author of several books and hundreds of articles in this field. Read the rest of this entry »

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Sharansky: “I don’t miss Mubarak and I won’t miss Assad”

Natan Sharansky on Syria's Assad and Egypt's MubarekLast week, Natan Sharansky (now the Chairman of the Jewish Agency for Israel) was asked: “The ‘Arab Spring’ may turn out to be less stable than non-democratic regimes. What impact will this have on Israel’s prospects for peace?”

Sharansky responded strongly: “I’m very glad about what’s happening. I don’t miss Mubarak and I won’t miss Assad.”

“I prefer to deal with democracy. Democratic leaders depend on the people, who want peace, good economy, a good education. Dictators need an external enemy to control the people. Mubarak turned Egypt into the most anti-Semitic country in the Middle East. Syria didn’t make peace so that it could have emergency laws.” Read the rest of this entry »

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Antisemitism at Yale

antisemitism at Yale UniversityThe modern university is no longer made up simply of departments and regular professors teaching students. Ancillary centers, programs, and initiatives proliferate, undertaking research on every conceivable topic and, in exchange for use of the university’s name, bringing in prestige, money, and the occasional celebrity. The fates of such entities rarely make the New York Post. But anti-Semitism is not a normal subject.

Just how abnormal a subject it is, and how volatile its study can be, has come to public attention with Yale University’s termination of the Yale Interdisciplinary Initiative for the Study of Antisemitism (YIISA) after five years of successful operation. Led by the sociologist Charles Small, YIISA was the largest research unit in North America devoted to examining an issue of great antiquity and urgent contemporary significance. Its mission was defined clearly: “to explore this subject matter in a comprehensive, interdisciplinary framework from an array of approaches and perspectives as well as regional contexts.”

charles asher small , sociologist studying antisemitism at YalePursuant to that mission, YIISA annually assembled groups of scholars for seminars and conferences and published a series of studies. The scholars attached to the initiative included such figures as David Hirsh of Goldsmiths College in London, Irwin Cotler, the former Canadian attorney general, and Bassam Tibi, professor emeritus of international relations at the University of Goettingen. Dozens of other well-credentialed academics participated in YIISA seminars, with interns, graduate fellows, and Yale faculty members helping to realize the enterprise’s promise of becoming a “vibrant space” for scholarship, discussion, and debate.

But “initiatives” are fragile things, and this one, evidently, initiated more than its host had bargained for. At a 2010 conference titled “Global Antisemitism: A Crisis of Modernity,” experts from around the world gathered to deliberate the most dangerous global form of contemporary anti-Semitism, namely, the Muslim variety. Dangerous in more ways than one: the event’s discussions provoked the ire of some Yale faculty and students, as well as representatives of the official Muslim world; the ire evidently caused institutional discomfiture; and YIISA’s fate was sealed. Read the rest of this entry »

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One Year in Jail and a Thousand Dollar Fine

the author of the ballot initiative writes this antisemitic comic bookQ: What does San Francisco’s upcoming November ballot initiative say?

A: The ballot initiative would make it unlawful and criminal to circumcise any part of the foreskin of another person who has not attained the age of eighteen years.

Q: Is there an exception for religious practice of circumcision?

A: No. The initiative would make circumcision lawful only if there is a “clear, compelling, and immediate medical need with no less-destructive alternative treatment available.”

antisemitic fantasy has orthodox Jew attacking immodestly dressed motherQ: What is the penalty?

A: This initiative would criminalize performing circumcision, putting any physician or religious clergy person who performs the procedure in county jail for up to a year, and/or punished with a fine of $1,000. (The measure denies parents the right to choose, with the guidance of their physician or tradition, circumcision for their sons.)

Q: Wouldn’t this ban be against the law?

A: Probably. California law prevents localities from prohibiting medical professionals from performing procedures within the scope of their profession. In addition, there are significant Constitutional legal issues with this proposed measure because it would infringe upon the right to free exercise of religion.

Q: Why can’t we ignore this as a frivolous ballot measure?

A: Proponents of this initiative refer to “genital cutting” and “mutilation,” implying that male circumcision is analogous to female genital mutilation and hoping to conceal from voters their attempt to criminalize a widely accepted procedure.

Q: Doesn’t circumcision have health benefits?

Antisemite's hero kidnaps Jewish childrenA: Yes. The World Health Organization reports: “There is compelling evidence that male circumcision reduces the risk of heterosexually acquired HIV infection in men by approximately 60%.” There are also medical reports of lower rates of penile cancer and urinary tract infections in circumcised males, and reduced cervical cancer in women whose partners are circumcised.

Q: How is male circumcision different from female genital mutilation?

A: Male circumcision has known and documented health benefits, and there is no credible medical evidence that male circumcision is harmful or prevents male sexual satisfaction. Its purpose is religious and for health benefits. In contrast, female genital mutilation is performed for the explicit san francisco antisemites dream of stealing Jewish children to prevent circumcisionpurpose antisemitic fantasy - happy endingof the whole world's got to be just like uspreventing female sexual satisfaction. The World Health Organization states that female genital mutilation “includes procedures that intentionally injure female genital organs for non-medical reasons,” that it “has no health benefits” and is “internationally recognized as a violation of the human rights of girls and women.”

[NOTE: You have been reading excerpts from issue #2 of Foreskin Man, the antisemitic comic book written by the author of the San Francisco ballot initiative.]

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You shall write them on the doorposts of your house…

mezzuzah, Texas Law protects mezuzah, doorpost, Jewish mitzvah (commandment) from DeuteronomyIn 2007, a Jewish family in Houston was told to remove their mezzuzah from their apartment’s entryway or pay fines.  Their condo association claimed that the display was against its regulations.

The family sued, but failed to get relief  from a hearing in a U.S. District Court.  Their lawyer then contacted their state representative; and in 2009, Texas lawmakers drafted a bipartisan bill (H.B. 3025, H.B. 1278) that would forbid homeowners associations from prohibiting the display of a mezzuzah or other religious item.

The word “mezzuzah” is not mentioned in the bill’s text, which allows for one or more religious items of no more than twenty-five square inches to be displayed on the entry door or door frame. Read the rest of this entry »

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Foreskin Man

foreskin man - anti-semitic comic book about circumcisionMost of the Californians who would ban a bris are well-meaning but ignorant; only a few are ill intentioned.   But the foolishness and the antisemitism become conflated when you watch their videos or read their written materials.

Their rhetoric often describes painful practices and botched operations performed by doctors in hospitals, rather than the practices of mohelim in synagogues.  Those hospital practices are irrelevant to traditional Jews.  A bris doesn’t happen in a hospital; a bris typically happens in shul, right after the Shacharit (daily morning) service.

antisemitic comic book distorts JudaismAnd we’d never use an ordinary doctor, only a mohel.  First, because we Jews are required to have a bris, not a mere circumcision.  (A medically circumcised Jew, or a baby born without a foreskin, still needs to have a bris.)  Second, an experienced mohel is medically preferable to an experienced doctor; he typically has done hundreds if not thousands of these minor operations, and he does nothing else; while a doctor does many different procedures, including perhaps only dozens of circumcisions.

Antisemites project thier own evil onto their fantasies of Judaism.  Here gun-toting rabbis abduct children to circumcize them, like the forced baptisms of past centuries.  In this antisemitic fantasy, these rabbis lust for the taste of the baby's blood

Antisemites project thier own evil onto their fantasies of Judaism. Here, gun-toting rabbis abduct children to circumcise them, like the forced baptisms by Christians of past centuries. In this antisemitic fantasy, these rabbis lust for the taste of the baby's blood.

Some anti-bris promotional materials are quite inflammatory, showing babies being strapped to boards to immobilize them for the convenience of a doctor.  This of course does not happen at a Jewish bris, where the baby rests on a pillow in the lap of the sandek, a loving relative, typically a grandparent.

 

The great majority of the protesters have never seen a traditional bris, and some harbor antisemitic emotional baggage.  To see this blend of ignorance and antisemitism in action — and I do mean action! — check out Foreskin Man, an anti-semitic comic book that advocates for a federal ban on circumcision. Read the rest of this entry »

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Support the “Wall of Lies” when it is Displayed on Your Campus

To see the full Palestinian Wall of Lies, learn how to relate to it, and find out when and where it’s coming to a college near you, visit http://WallOfLies.org/

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An Assault on Israel’s Borders

Syrian infiltrators pour past Israel's bordersLess than two hours before Palestinians broke through the Syrian border into the Golan Heights yesterday, President Shimon Peres called for the Palestinian Authority to return to direct negotiations and expressed Israel’s strong desire for a two state solution and peace:  “The United Nations made a decision in 1947 to establish two states, one Jewish and one Arab,” said Peres.  “We accepted the decision.  The Arabs rejected the decision and attacked us.  The Nakba began then.  If the Arabs had accepted, the situation would be different and we would live today in peace.” It is the very birth of Israel, its very existence, that some who hope for its elimination refer to as the “Nakba” – the “catastrophe.”

During the last sixty-three years, those who continue to reject Israel’s right to exist have subjected it to various forms of assault, from invasions to rocket attacks to suicide bombings to economic boycotts to de-legitimatization campaigns.  Yesterday’s assaults on Israel’s borders are a continuation of this effort.   Their purpose was summed up by Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh, now a partner in the Palestinian Authority.  The actions, he said, “will eventually lead to the end of the Zionist enterprise and the victory of the Islamic nation.”

That the Palestinian Authority has chosen to form a partnership with a group that continues to reject Israel’s right to exist, ought to be extremely troubling to all those who care about an end to this conflict and those who pray for peace. Read the rest of this entry »

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Mahmoud Abbas on Israeli Apartheid, Palestinian Real Estate

Mahmoud Abbas on Israeli Apartheid, Palestinian Real Estate

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