Wednesday, January 28, 2015

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The plague of darkness - V’lo Rau Ish es Achiv - A Man could not see his neighbor/brother

The Chiddushei Harim explained that the plague of darkness wasn’t confined to Egypt. Rather it is a recurring plague of V’lo Rau Ish es Achiv – when Yidden fail to see, acknowledge or recognize their brothers who need their assistance.

This letter was sent to friends of ours in the Hollywood community.

Dear Jewish Friends,
May we ask your forgiveness for the persecution of your people, by those who called themselves Christians over the years. We were ignorant spiritually as to how wrong that was, since you are called God's Chosen People, and Israel is His Land. We are praying for the Peace of Jerusalem and that the Messiah will reveal Himself to His People. Forgive us for we did not know the curse that would bring on people who did not Bless His People, and pray for them, their Land, and for the Revelation of how we would become ONE.  True Christians are your best friends right now as the world devides over our connections and attitudes toward Israel. So sad to see America pulling away from our support for Israel. The Bible says God will Bless those who Bless Israel. Just watch what happens to the Nations that fight to pressure Israel to give up Land For Peace...or, completely turn our backs on Israel. God will take His Favor from us sad. Our prayers are with you.

God Bless You...

Shirley and Pat Boone

Commemorating the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz This unique film produced by Steven Spielberg and narrated by Meryl Streep was played during yesterday's ceremony for the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz.

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The Scale of Auschwitz

Auschwitz: Drone video of Nazi concentration camp

The Mythical Moderate Muslim In Israel, a moderate Muslim is a dead Muslim, which is bad news for those who want us to believe that there is a peaceful solution to the continuing Arab war against Israel.

Primitive tribes offer sacrifices hoping to mollify whatever nonexistent beings they believe in. New York Times columnist Paul Krugman seems to belong to a very sophisticated tribe that, according to the recently retired Malaysian Prime Minister, rules the world by proxy. One would think Mr. Krugman should be above such crude superstitions. Nevertheless, in his column on October 21, he suggests that Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld should fire General Boykin in order to mollify moderate Muslims.

General Boykin, the leading anti-terror expert at the Pentagon and a devout Christian, had openly and publicly, on several occasions, expressed his personal opinion of Islam, which happens to be rather low. Considering where the terror is coming from, this is far less surprising than Mr. Krugman's eagerness to sacrifice both General Boykin and the First Amendment in order to mollify moderate Muslims. I'd like to ask Mr. Krugman what gives him reason to believe that the beings he is trying to mollify actually exist.

The official, politically correct point of view says that Islam is just another monotheistic religion, not that different from Judaism or Christianity. If that is true, then moderate Muslims must exist, just like moderate members of other faiths. However, moderate members of other faiths do not require sacrificial mollification - that's basically how we tell moderates from extremists. Therefore, either moderate Muslims are mythical creatures, or we need substantially different criteria to identify them. That dilemma alone should make us suspicious as to whether Islam is "just another religion". Obviously, it is important that we determine how a moderate Muslim can be distinguished from a Muslim extremist.

Why not ask Muslims themselves? Irshad Manji, a young Canadian author, has published a book titled "The Trouble With Islam." Since we don't hear too many Muslim voices criticizing their religion, her book deserves our attention. This is what the author herself says on her promotional website
"I appreciate that every faith has its share of literalists. Christians have their Evangelicals. Jews have the ultra-Orthodox. For God's sake, even Buddhists have fundamentalists. But what this book hammers home is that only in Islam the literalism is mainstream."
Apparently, the terms "literalism" and "fundamentalism" in the quotation above are used interchangeably, as synonyms of religious extremism. Unfortunately, the author fails to mention the most important difference between "literalists" in Islam and other religions. Evangelical Christians may believe that heaven is reserved for them alone. Ultra-Orthodox Jews may display intimate understanding of the murkiest places in the Talmud. I have no idea what extreme fundamentalist Buddhists do that sets them apart from their moderate coreligionists. What I do know however is that no religion except Islam pursues the idea of physical extermination of those who believe differently. The concept of holy war is unique to Islam. Jihad is the absolute monopoly of Muslims. There is no parallel to it in any other religion in the world (Yes, I have heard about Crusades, but Christianity does not mandate them, and do you know when the last Crusade ended?).
So, here we have it in plain English, as simple as A, B, C: 
A. According to the Koran, holy war against the infidels is a sacred duty of every Muslim. 
B. According to Ms. Manji, mainstream Muslims interpret Koran literally.
The conclusion is inevitable:
C. Mainstream Muslims perceive war against the infidels - meaning you and me - as their sacred duty.
Once you understand that, you don't need books to explain to you what exactly the trouble with Islam is. The trouble with Islam derives from the fact that mainstream Islam openly calls for murder of all infidels. That's why Islam is not "just another religion". That's what, in my view, allows to classify all its followers as extremist.
What then, besides our stubborn, groundless faith in the general goodness of our fellow human beings, leads us to believe that moderate Muslims are not just a figment of our imagination? How do they manifest themselves in the real world?

It would be utterly useless to look for them in Gaza, Judea, or Samaria. Unlike bin Laden, terrorists occupying Israeli lands do not live in caves. They live in small towns, villages, and crowded refugee camps where everyone knows everything about everyone else. They couldn't survive for a day without popular support. When someone gives them a reason to doubt the sincerity of his support, they label him a collaborator and murder him on the spot. Indeed, the PA-sponsored educational system guarantees that innocent children are indoctrinated in the most murderous variety of Islamic extremism - thereby losing their innocence - at the earliest possible age. Therefore, in Israel, a moderate Muslim is a dead Muslim, which is bad news for those who want us to believe that there is a peaceful solution to the continuing Arab war against Israel.

Let's look elsewhere. Afghanistan, liberated by the United States from the medieval tyranny of the Taliban is about to publish the draft of its first constitution. Their new constitution is going to be firmly based on Islamic principles. The country itself is soon to be renamed the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. We wouldn't call a Jew or a Christian who wanted his religion to become the basis of his country's constitution a moderate, would we? Here, in the United States, we value the separation of church from state so much that we launch court battles to remove the Ten Commandments and every reference to God from everything that is even remotely related to the government. If Islam is "just another religion", shouldn't the same criteria apply to Muslim countries? And if the same criteria do apply, we have to conclude that President Karzai installed in Afghanistan by the American military and unable to survive now or in the foreseeable future without the American military presence, is not a moderate Muslim, but an outright religious extremist. His "Very correct" remark to Mahadir's call for the extermination of Jews shows that he is a political extremist as well. Therefore, the only practical question regarding Afghanistan is why did the United States have to waste lives of its soldiers and tens of billions of dollars in order to replace one bunch of Muslim extremists with another? It might have been worthwhile had it improved our security at home, but, as we know, that didn't happen. Therefore, we have to conclude that the United States has once again won a battle but lost the war. The same will inevitably happen in Iraq.
The desperate search for moderate Muslims goes all around the world. It is especially urgent in Europe, whose face is being irreversibly altered by mass immigration from Islamic countries. Recently, the British government appealed to the growing British Muslim community to isolate extremists in their midst. It's not hard to predict the response. Actually, there will be no response, because everyone in any Muslim community is an extremist. Such is the nature of Islam, and the only thing that I find hard to comprehend is the self-imposed blindness of the British government. Apparently, such is the price of liberalism and political correctness. Bye-bye, Europe. We are next.
I don't think World War II could be won if the Allies, instead of eradicating Nazism, attempted to replace Nazi extremists with moderate Nazis. Actually, nobody was looking for moderate Nazis during World War II. But those were simpler, purer times. Today, the mythical moderate Muslim remains the focal point of the US foreign policy in the Middle East. The blind faith in his existence has already led the United States to many monumental failures, and many more are to be expected in the future. Meanwhile, the moderate Muslim, along with the Big Foot, the unicorn, and the Loch Ness monster, remains more elusive than a cure for cancer. There is at least a theoretical possibility that a cure for cancer can be found one day, unless of course Islam takes over and drags us all down into its own endless Dark Ages.
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The Green Prince Official US Release Trailer

Amb Prosor at UN: 70 years since the liberation of Auschwitz

A commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau Nazi death camp was held on 21 January 2015 at UN Headquarters in New York, organized by the Permanent Mission of Poland to the UN. The permanent representatives to the UN of the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom, France, Rwanda, Israel and Germany were among those who spoke.

Today we commemorate 70 years since the liberation of Auschwitz. Primo Levi, an Italian Jew who survived Auschwitz wrote, "I am constantly amazed by man's inhumanity to man." 

The Holocaust was an age of atrocity and an age of impunity. In the years that followed, people believed that we grew more civilized and sensitized - that atrocities would not befall us again. Well, but then there was Cambodia, Rwanda, Darfur, and Bosnia.

History has shown us that there will always be some people who believe that some lives are worth less than others because their nationality, because of their ethnicity or because of  their ancestry. They fail to understand that while we may not be brothers and sisters in faith, we are brother and sisters in fate - bound together by a common humanity. 

The Holocaust didn't begin with ghettos and concentration camps; it began with the Jews being degraded and dehumanized. The Nazis stripped the Jews of their property, their dignity, and eventually their lives. We see this same indifference for Jewish life today. 

The terrorist who murdered four Jews in a Paris grocery store two weeks ago didn't see Yoav Hattab as someone's brother, or Yoav Cohen as someone's boyfriend, or Philippe Braham as someone's husband, or Francois-Michel Saada as someone's father.  He saw them as less than human and killed them in cold blood.
Seventy years after the Holocaust, European Jews are once again living in fear. They are being attacked on the streets for wearing a kippah, their businesses are being vandalized, and firebombs are being thrown at synagogues. Europe is facing an epidemic of antisemitism. 

Last summer, there was an outbreak of violent protests following Israel's conflict with Gaza. In France, Jewish worshipers in a synagogue were surrounded by an angry mob claiming to protest the policies of the Israeli government.

Let me be clear - the demonstrators didn't choose to protest outside the Israeli embassy or a government office; they aimed their attacks to Jews in a house of worship. This wasn't an expression of legitimate criticism or freedom of speech - this is the newest incarnation of the world's oldest hatred.

Here in the United Nations, in this institute, Israel is regularly singled out for attack. These attacks may be masked as criticisms of Israeli policies, but very often they reveal a bias that runs deep within this institution. 

Consider the following. There are 20 times more Human Rights Council resolutions passed against Israel as compared  with  any other countries in the world. This is neither logical or moral.  heads of state and ambassadors stood in this institution compare Israel to Hitler and the Nazis. This is not  legitimate criticism. 

When you walked through the gates this morning, you passed the flags of all 193 member states. There are 25 flags with a cross on them, 15 with a crescent and only one, one with a Jewish Star of David. 

For some people and some nations - one Jewish state is one too many. They would like to see the day when Jews are once again scattered, homeless, persecuted, and defenseless.

People speak about Israel's right to self-defense, but when Jewish lives are threatened and Israel acts to defend them, we are largely denounced.  We have been humanity's canary in the coal mine for too long. Well, no more. 

Today we have a strong State of Israel standing guard day and night. Abba Eban, Israel's former Foreign Minister saw the bias and said, "It's better to be disliked than pitied." He was right. 

Israel is the only real democracy in the Middle East. It is the only country in the region with a free press, with free elections, and free speech. And it is the only nation defending the rights of women and minorities. We will always defend these values. Always. And if we have to be disliked in the process, so be it. 

The alternative - to being  pitied - is no longer an option. Israel will never relinquish its right to defend the Jewish state and the Jewish people.

A Jewish proverb teaches , from Hebrew: 
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"The instruments of both death and life are in the power of the tongue."

I look around the world and I see political leaders claiming that that there is a "sacred duty" to slaughter the infidels. I see religious leaders declaring that homosexuals are less than human. And I see school teachers encouraging young children to grow up and become martyrs. 

In classrooms and houses of worship across the globe, children are being taught violence instead of tolerance and martyrdom instead of mutual understanding.

For too long, too many, have been too silent. Fearful of the need to be politically correct, nations have been reluctant to speak truthfully, clearly, and loudly. 

Some people claim to stand for liberal values, but from their ivory towers they can't see that extremists are using human rights to abuse human beings. They are using free speech to abuse free expression. And they are using the media to abuse journalists.

If you want to prevent the next mass atrocity, then there can be no ambiguities or equivocations - say it like it is. Radical Islamists are the single greatest threat to global peace and security. 

I am here to tell you that we have a responsibility. We have a responsibility to fight for the values we all believe in. Extremists are attacking human rights and human dignity and we are not doing enough to stop them. 

The danger of indifference and the consequences of inaction are just too high. We must stand together and proclaim that there can be zero, zero, tolerance for prejudice. There can be zero tolerance for teaching children to hate. And there can be zero tolerance for extremism. 

Mr. President,

The United Nations emerged from the ashes of the Holocaust to stand up for humanity. It is a responsibility that each and every one of us carries every single day. The Holocaust taught us that remembrance without resolve is meaningless. And it showed us that awareness must be matched with action. 

We have a duty to ACT - A, C, T. A- We must be attentive and recognize the warning signs. C- We must condemn all those who are motivated by prejudice. And T- we must teach, teach, the next generation tolerance and understanding.

Together we must stand with courage and determination to defend our freedom, protect our values and confront those forces who would take them away. Only then can we say the words "never again" and know that these words have meaning.

Thank you very much.

About That Netanyahu Invitation to Address Congress by Elliott Abrams

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addresses a joint meeting of Congress in the House Chamber of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, May 24, 2011. (Molly Riley/Courtesy: Reuters)
Israel’s prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu last addressed a joint session of Congress in 2011. At that time Walter Russell Mead wrote a remarkable comment on the speech Netanyahu made and the reception he received. Mead’s comment, in his blog at The American Interest, included this passage:
Israel matters in American politics like almost no other country on earth. Well beyond the American Jewish and the Protestant fundamentalist communities, the people and the story of Israel stir some of the deepest and most mysterious reaches of the American soul. The idea of Jewish and Israeli exceptionalism is profoundly tied to the idea of American exceptionalism. The belief that God favors and protects Israel is connected to the idea that God favors and protects America.
It means more. The existence of Israel means that the God of the Bible is still watching out for the well-being of the human race. For many American Christians who are nothing like fundamentalists, the restoration of the Jews to the Holy Land and their creation of a successful, democratic state after two thousand years of oppression and exile is a clear sign that the religion of the Bible can be trusted.
Being pro-Israel matters in American mass politics because the public mind believes at a deep level that to be pro-Israel is to be pro-American and pro-faith. Substantial numbers of voters believe that politicians who don’t ‘get’ Israel don’t ‘get’ America and don’t ‘get’ God.
Obama administration officials who are trying to argue that Netanyahu’s invitation from Speaker Boehner is outrageous and political (just a few days after the president got British prime minister Cameron to lobby Congress directly) will lose the argument. Iran’s nuclear program is one of the most significant national security issues we face and an even larger issue for Israel, and Israel is one of this country’s closest allies. The bad blood between Obama and Netanyahu, which has included personal attacks on Netanyahu by the White House staff, should not be allowed to color what the Speaker does. I think it’s fine that Obama will not see Netanyahu so close to the Israeli election; that’s a good practice in general and avoids the inference of U.S. intervention in a foreign electoral contest. (Of course, in this case no Israeli over the age of five can possibly have any doubt that Obama wants to see Netanyahu lose his job.) Moreover, it avoids the painful spectacle of Obama and Netanyahu making believe they like each other and have enjoyed seeing each other again.
But the White House’s whining about Boehner’s invitation is amateurish, and for the reasons Mead explained it will persuade few Americans beyond the Beltway. Given the situation in the Middle East and the state of nuclear negotiations with Iran (where the United States has abandoned almost every red line it ever set), it’s no wonder Obama would like to silence Netanyahu–and no wonder that Netanyahu wants to speak about Iran and that the Speaker wants to hear him.

Lawyers Called to Use Skills to Defend Israel - Inside Israel - News - Arutz Sheva

Unprecedented legal activist training seminar hopes to raise the next generation of Israel's courtroom defenders.
By Udi Bosh
First Publish: 1/28/2015, 3:27 PM

View of Israel's Knesset (illustrative)
View of Israel's Knesset (illustrative)
BT Global Media
From every quarter, the global attacks against Israel are escalating. No sooner did the summer’s rocket barrages from the Islamist terror organizations in Gaza come to an end than an unprecedented wave of murderous terrorist violence in Israeli cities commenced. At the same time the anti-Semitic Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement has moved into high gear, threatening to delegitimize the Jewish State. Jewish communities worldwide report daily attacks menacing their security.

In response to these dangerous challenges, the Tel-Aviv based civil rights group Shurat HaDin-Israel Law Center, is organizing attorneys and other supporters of Israel to fight back. The group has launched its first ever “Activist  Lawyer’s Training Seminar” (ALTS), to be held June 29th through July 5th in Jerusalem. The ALTS will be an intensive week-long summer training course designed to give attorneys the opportunity to learn skills and strategies to combat Israel’s enemies on the new emerging battlefields being utilized by the terrorist and hate groups. It will mix dynamic lectures and legal workshops with cutting edge field trips tothe frontline of Israel’s conflict with neighboring enemies. The Kosher ALTS program will provide five star Israeli hotel accommodations.
According to Shurat HaDin director Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, “We decided to initiate the Activist Lawyer’s Training Seminar this coming June 2015 to teach attorneys how they can use their legal skills to help defend the Jewish State. The Israeli government alone can no longer fend off all the vicious threats to our existence and the private sector, especially lawyers, need to get involved and join the battle. We are bringing in some of the best attorneys, professors and officials involved in confronting Israel’s enemies globally to teach the participants the skills they need to play a vital role.”
Shurat HaDin is uniquely qualified to host the summer’s training course for lawyers. For the past twelve years, the law center has become known for its use of innovative legal strategies utilized to combat global terror financing and to seek justice for terror victims in courtrooms around the world. Shurat HaDin has made a reputation using creative legal tactics to staunchly defend the State of Israel and the world Jewish communities against the growing tide of anti-Israel activism and anti-Semitism through calls for boycotts by the BDS movement.
The group has taken the lead in by going on the offensive to defend IDF officers and Israeli officials against accusations of war crimes in different international tribunals. The ALTS was specially crafted to meet the needs of lawyers from around an international array of countries who have expressed an interest in learning about Shurat HaDin’s work and methods and getting involved as legal activists on behalf of the State of Israel and the Jewish people. Over the years, Shurat HaDin has developed expertise in developing quality and fun educational programs through its highly successful “Ultimate Missions to Israel,” which the group has been running since 2003, and its summer and winter Student Internship Program for law students.
For the first time, Shurat HaDin is directing its educational programming to practicing lawyers while offering them continuing legal education (“CLE”) credits. The ALTS offers an incredible program filled with lectures and intensive workshops by renowned attorneys and Israeli officials, including Canadian MP Irwin Cotler and Israeli Supreme Court Justice Yoram Danziger and field trips to Israeli agencies and institutions that are rarelyaccessed by the general public, including the military courts, Israeli security agencies, IDF bases and border crossings. In addition to the opportunity to travel in and enjoy Israel, participants will receive practical training in advocacy on Israel’s behalf on issues such as terror victim litigation, Israel in international law, the anti-Israel BDS movement and "lawfare."
Darshan-Leitner stated: “This is a wonderful opportunity for concerned lawyers to learn about the up to the minute human rights and legal challenges facing Israel while networking with other like-minded professionals and earning CLE credits in their jurisdictions – all at the same time. It will help harness all this passionate concern and commitment so many attorneys have expressed to us about wanting to fight on Israel’s behalf. We envision that the ALTS will be an important new resource and legal network to combat Israel’s enemies.” 
The Seminar will be held on June 29 to July 5, 2015 and in Jerusalem and Northern Israel. Registration has already begun.
More information about Shurat HaDin and The Activist Lawyers Training Seminar is available here.

The Saddest Irony 70 Years Later – A First-Person Account from SWC's Writer/Director & Executive Producer, Moriah Films' Richard Trank

It is the saddest irony that 70 years later, I sit in a comfortable hotel room, looking out on this amazing medieval city, when an hour away is the 
site of what was the most horrific killing center the world has known. Auschwitz. My grandmother, my uncle, my great aunts and great uncles, most of my father's cousins, all were murdered there. 

Today was a very surreal experience to be sitting inside the pr
ess and media tent, yards away from the infamous entrance to Auschwitz-Birkenau, where the trains arrived and dropped off terrified people, forced into cattle cars, many sick and dying from the journey. And then to be separated from wives, husbands, mothers and fathers, siblings. Some going left, some directed to the right. Some for death just moments after they arrived. Others for a more protracted death, being forced to work, starving and cold. 

It's where my grandmother, Chana Trenk, was sent and most likely killed the same day she arrived 
from Michalovce, Slovakia. It was in a sub camp of Birkenau that my father's youngest brother, Mitsu, was killed not long before the camp was liberated. He was just a teenager. It was where all of my father's aunts and uncles, his cousins perished. 

I have been to this horrible, evil place at least ten times over the years, swearing to myself I'll never come back. And then my work brings me here yet again. 

Today, as Europe has erupted into a miasma of anti-Semitism, the likes of which we haven't seen in seven decades, it seems right to be here to commemorate the moment 70 years ago that Auschwitz Birkenau was liberated and to be among the dwindling number of survivors who got the best revenge against their tormentors—they survived, started or rebuilt their families and helped to create a State to ensure that this never happens again.

Survivors sing Hatikvah Auschwitz

Adolf Eichmann hoped his 'Arab friends' would continue his battle against the Jews

Former SS and Nazi leader Adolf Eichmann (1906 - 1962) in Nazareth, preparing his defence in the trial brought against him for war crimes (Photo: Evening Standard/Getty)

Over Christmas I finally got around to reading Eichmann Before Jerusalemby Bettina Stangneth.  I cannot recommend this book – newly translated from the German – highly enough.  It challenges and indeed changes nearly all received wisdom about the leading figure behind the genocide of European Jews during World War II.
The title of course refers to Hannah Arendt’s omnipresent and over-praised account of Adolf Eichmann’s 1961 trial, Eichmann in Jerusalem: a report on the banality of evil.  I would say that Stangneth’s book not merely surpasses but actually buries Arendt’s account.  Not least in showing how Arendt was fooled by Eichmann’s role-play in the dock in Jerusalem.  For whereas Arendt famously portrayed the man in the glass booth as a type of bureaucrat, Stangneth shows not only that Eichmann was not the man Arendt took him to be, but that she fell for a very carefully curated and prepared performance.  Putting together a whole library of scattered documents from Eichmann’s exile in Argentina in the 1950s, Stangneth puts the actual, unrepentant Eichmann back centre stage.
There are a number of startling discoveries in the book, not least among them being the extent to which Eichmann had kept up with the books and scholarship on the Holocaust as they came out so that by the time he was awaiting trial in Jerusalem he was fully on top of all primary and secondary material put to him.  There is also the extent to which Stangneth is able to show (through accounts from various members of the South America Nazi circles) how well known the true identity of ‘Ricardo Klement’ actually was within the German expat community in those years.
But Stangneth’s principle scholarly triumph has been her ability to piece together and make sense of the extant transcripts and recordings known as the Sassen conversations.  Together with Eichmann’s contemporary attempts at memoir-writing they bring a wholly new interpretation on his years in Argentina.  These conversations – recorded by the journalist and Nazi Willem Sassen in the 1950s – came to light before Eichmann went on trial.  But in Jerusalem Eichmann threw doubt on their authenticity and for this reason (as well as the complex dissemination and distribution of the transcripts plus disputes over ownership as well as attempts to disown them) the complete picture of these interviews has taken until now to come to light.  Stangneth’s work on these materials is extraordinary and the results more than reward her considerable efforts.  For instance she shows that those who participated in the conversations (including Sassen himself) tried very hard to cover over exactly what had gone on after Eichmann was abducted by the Mossad.  And Stangneth startlingly shows the extent to which these discussions were far from being one-on-one interviews but were in fact semi-public events.
The nature of these events, and their content, is of considerable contemporary as well as historical relevance.  For two reasons in particular.  The first relates to the ongoing European discussion of free speech and Holocaust denial laws.  Because Stangneth shows that as an increasing amount of information on the Holocaust came to light in the 1950s the immediate reaction of the remaining Nazis and neo-Nazis in South America was denial.  Some of the Argentina Nazis sincerely believed that the Federal German Republic would not last and that their belief system might yet return to save the German people.  But even these remote fantasists realised that the news of the Holocaust presented problems for their rehabilitation.  And so they hoped to expose the Holocaust.  Their first attempts were not only crude but were swiftly overtaken by an unstoppable flood of information and scholarship.  By the mid-1950s even the most committed remaining Nazis clearly found ignoring the weight of evidence to be an uphill struggle.  And so this group of Nazis in South America, brought together by Sassen, thought that Eichmann might provide the solution to their quandary.  They believed that Eichmann would be able to help them not just because he had been the person most closely involved in the Nazi programmes against the Jews, but as the man cited at Nuremberg as having first used the six million figure.  The Buenos Aires Nazis assumed that if they got Eichmann on record then they could show the world that the six million figure was a lie, or at least a great exaggeration.
By this point Eichmann was also thinking of breaking his cover in some way.  In 1956 he once again attempted to write a book, this time provisionally titledDie anderen sprachen, jetzt will ich sprechen [The Others Spoke, Now I Want to Speak!].  But the conversations with the Sassen circle – which came from the same instinct of his to break his silence – turned out to constitute an attempt to square an impossible circle.  For Eichmann saw the Sassen circle’s efforts to minimize the Holocaust as something like a spitting on his life’s work.  Eichmann knew that the six million figure was accurate, and seems to have only gradually realised that his audience were hoping for something quite different from him.  The discussions clearly broke down under this unresolvable issue.  Among the reasons why I would suggest that this has some contemporary relevance is that it is the clearest possible reminder of how in open discussion even the people most committed to trying to prove the Holocaust did not occur (former leading Nazi officials) ended up being unable to disprove the facts. On that occasion – as so often – they slunk away.
But the second reason why Stangneth’s book seems relevant for more than historical reasons is because of what it tells us about a stream of poison which remains very much at the centre of current events.
In The Others Spoke, Now I Want to Speak! (the reference is to his former colleagues who – in another un-square-able moment – Eichmann believed had defamed him at Nuremberg) he had the opportunity to write about the recent Suez Crisis.  Here is one passage Stangneth quotes which was new to me at least.
‘And while we are considering all this – we, who are still searching for clarity on whether (and if yes, how far) we assisted in what were in fact damnable events during the war – current events knock us down and take our breath away.  For Israeli bayonets are now overrunning the Egyptian people, who have been startled from their peaceful sleep.  Israeli tanks and armored cars are tearing through Sinai, firing and burning, and Israeli air squadrons are bombing peaceful Egyptian villages and towns.  For the second time since 1945, they are invading… Who are the aggressors here?  Who are the war criminals?  The victims are Egyptians, Arabs, Mohammedans.  Amon and Allah, I fear that, following what was exercised on the Germans in 1945, Your Egyptian people will have to do penance, to all the people of Israel, to the main aggressor and perpetrator against humanity in the Middle East, to those responsible for the murdered Muslims, as I said, Your Egyptian people will have to do penance for having the temerity to want to live on their ancestral soil… We all know the reasons why, beginning in the Middle Ages and from then on in an unbroken sequence, a lasting discord arose between the Jews and their host nation, Germany.’
There then follows an extraordinary and important passage.  For Eichmann goes on to say that if he himself were ever found guilty of any crime it would only be ‘for political reasons’.  He tries to argue that a guilty verdict against him would be ‘an impossibility in international law’ but goes on to say that he could never obtain justice ‘in the so-called Western culture.’  The reason for this is obvious enough: because in the Christian Bible ‘to which a large part of Western thought clings, it is expressly established that everything sacred came from the Jews.’  Western culture has, for Eichmann, been irrevocably Judaised. And so Eichmann looks to a different group, to the ‘large circle of friends, many millions of people’ to whom this manuscript is aimed:
‘But you, you 360 million Mohammedans, to whom I have had a strong inner connection since the days of my association with your Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, you, who have a greater truth in the surahs of your Koran, I call upon you to pass judgment on me.  You children of Allah have known the Jews longer and better than the West has.  Your noble Muftis and scholars of law may sit in judgement upon me and, at least in a symbolic way, give me your verdict.’ [pp 227-8]
Elsewhere Stangneth shows how open Eichmann must have been in his admiration for Israel’s neighbours.  After Eichmann’s abduction his family apparently became concerned about his second son.  According to a police report, ‘As Horst was easily excitable the Eichmann family was afraid that when he heard about his father’s fate, he might volunteer to fight for the Arab countries in campaigns against Israel.’  As Stangneth adds, ‘Eichmann had obviously told his children where his new troops were to be found.’ [229]
Of course for years after the war there were rumours that Eichmann had fled to an Arab country.  He might have had a better time there.  Other Nazis certainly did, including Alois Brunner – Eichmann’s ‘best man’ – who settled in Damascus after the war and who is now believed to have died in Syria as recently as 2010.  Eichmann’s Argentina years were certainly filled with frustration and rage.  What is most interesting is how mentally caught he remained even before he was captured, principally by the impossible conundrum of how to persuade the world to accept what he had done and simultaneously boast about his role in the worst genocide in history.
There is much more to say about this book.  But I do urge people to read it.  Not least for the way in which Stangneth sums up the problem with the only strain of Nazi history which really remains strong to this day.  ‘Eichmann refused to do penance and longed for applause.  But first and foremost, of course, he hoped his “Arab friends” would continue his battle against the Jews who were always the “principal war criminals” and “principal aggressors.”  He hadn’t managed to complete his task of “total annihilation,” but the Muslims could still complete it for him.’

Elder Of Ziyon - Israel News: It's official: BDSers are the dumbest and sickest people on the planet

Everyone knows what a sabra is. As Wikipedia explains:
Sabra is an informal term that refers to Israeli Jews born in Israel. The term first appeared in the 1930s to refer to a Jew who had been born in Mandatory Palestine or in Ottoman Palestine (cf. Old Yishuv). Since the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948, Israelis have used the word to refer to a Jew born anywhere in the historical region of Palestine (Eretz Yisrael), which today comprises Israel proper, Gaza, and the West Bank.

The term alludes to a tenacious, thorny desert plant, known in English as prickly pear, with a thick skin that conceals a sweet, softer interior. The cactus is compared to Israeli Jews, who are supposedly tough on the outside, but delicate and sweet on the inside.

Yes, everyone knows what a sabra is - everyone except for rabid, stupid Israel haters:

Sure, some Zionists decided to create the Sabra Blue and White Foods company in 1986 in order to honor the massacre of Arabs by Lebanese Christians. Nothing to do with the actual word "sabra" that every Jewish schoolchild knows. That would be way too obvious, and we all know how much Zionists like to sneakhidden meanings in the names and logos of their food companies.

Zionists, being brilliant marketers, know that Jews are so bloodthirsty that they would turn "Dead Arab Dip" into a smashing success. Jews just love to eat foods that remind us of vicious murders done by Christians against Muslims. That's how Jews think, according to the disgusting, loathesome bigots behind the BDS movement.

This is the sick, twisted thinking behind the oxymoronically named "boycott4peace" and their BDS friends.

It proves that while they care nothing for peace, but they are sure filled with hate.

Elder Of Ziyon - Israel News: Never again, Obama-style (ElderToon)

Here was President Obama's statement for Holocaust Rememberance Day:
On the tenth International Holocaust Remembrance Day and the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the American people pay tribute to the six million Jews and millions of others murdered by the Nazi regime. We also honor those who survived the Shoah, while recognizing the scars and burdens that many have carried ever since.

Honoring the victims and survivors begins with our renewed recognition of the value and dignity of each person. It demands from us the courage to protect the persecuted and speak out against bigotry and hatred. The recent terrorist attacks in Paris serve as a painful reminder of our obligation to condemn and combat rising anti-Semitism in all its forms, including the denial or trivialization of the Holocaust.

This anniversary is an opportunity to reflect on the progress we have made confronting this terrible chapter in human history and on our continuing efforts to end genocide. I have sent a Presidential delegation to join Polish President Komorowski, the Polish people, official delegations from scores of nations, and many survivors, at today’s official commemoration in Poland.

As a founding member of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, the United States joins the Alliance’s thirty other member nations and partners in reiterating its solemn responsibility to uphold the commitments of the 2000 Stockholm Declaration. We commemorate all of the victims of the Holocaust, pledging never to forget, and recalling the cautionary words of the author and survivor of Auschwitz Primo Levi, “It happened, therefore it can happen again. . . . It can happen anywhere.” Today we come together and commit, to the millions of murdered souls and all survivors, that it must never happen again.
That all sounds very nice, until you realize that Obama's policies are leading directly towards an Iranian nuclear weapon whose primary target would be the six million Jews who live in Israel.  It is as close an analogy to the Holocaust as one can imagine, and Obama is railing against those who are trying to put real pressure on Iran because of its history of hiding all aspects of its program.

Anyway, I made this cartoon as a response:

The Delirium of Anti-Zionism - Commentary Magazine

Last week many were quick to hail the United Nations conference on anti-Semitism as a hopeful step forward. The fact that just 37 of the 193 UN member states even bothered to send delegates should be demonstration enough of just how little many countries care about the modern-day revival of global Jew hatred. There was, however, one moment in the proceedings that particularly stood out. During his address to the conference, French philosopher Bernard Henri-Levy identified demonization of Israel as key component of contemporary anti-Semitism, referring to what he termed “the delirium of anti-Zionism.” It was a particularly satisfying irony to hear these words spoken in a chamber that has so often played host to the worst trashing of the Jewish state. And yet the international consensus, as well as the consensus in the West, is largely deaf to that irony. Most still fail to see the extent to which anti-Zionism is the primary expression of hostility against Jews today.
That the United Nations has long provided one of the chief forums for castigating Israel can hardly be in doubt. The current General Assembly session (2014-2015) has so far passed 20 resolutions against Israel, and just three against events elsewhere in the world. The unhinged obsession with condemning the Jewish state is plain enough for all to see. And yet what even those world leaders who do speak out against anti-Semitism still often refuse to see is that those 20 UN resolutions against Israel represent the modern expression of an age-old Jew hatred.
Shortly after the Paris attacks, Natan Sharansky was interviewed by the BBC in his capacity as the head of the Jewish Agency. When asked about the rise of anti-Semitism Sharansky attempted to refer to the liberal circles in Europe where Israel receives almost uniform hostility. At that point the BBC anchor interjected, surely Sharansky did not mean to equate those who are “very critical” of Israel with anti-Semites? That would be a “dangerous” comparison the BBC man asserted. When Sharansky then attempted to clarify the distinction between reasonable criticism and the tendency to treat Israel unfairly the BBC presenter dismissively responded that he didn’t want to get into a discussion about Israel.
But for those who still can’t–or won’t–understand this phenomenon for what it is, and who would subsequently find Henri-Levy’s reference to anti-Zionism during a conference about anti-Semitism puzzling, perhaps they might direct their attention to another event that took place in New York last week. Anyone wishing to see the delirium of anti-Zionism in practice need only refer to Thursday’s storming of a New York City Council session by anti-Israel activists during a commemoration of the liberation of Auschwitz.
As the 40 demonstrators were being made to exit the public gallery one young womanhatefully screamed into a recording camera: “Palestinian lives Matter!” Well, quite. But try telling that to Hamas. And besides, however much Palestinian lives do matter, what on earth has that got to do with commemorating the Holocaust? This was in fact another theme picked up by Henri-Levy during his address: the phenomenon of both Holocaust denial and resistance to the Holocaust’s commemoration.
In 1975, when the UN infamously declared that Zionism is a form of racism, Daniel Patrick Moynihan defiantly stood before the General Assembly and informed the delegates that the UN had just granted “symbolic amnesty” to the murderers of the six million Jews. The increasingly common accusation that Israel is in some way replicating the crimes of Nazi Germany is certainly in part an effort to give that same amnesty, as well as to belittle the Nazi crime itself. This effort by anti-Israel activists to hijack Holocaust commemorations with an anti-Zionist message is of course a vicious–albeit clumsy–attempt to invalidate Israel’s very right to exist. These people inhabit a historically illiterate narrative in which they wrongly believe that the world powers simply handed the Jews someone else’s country as an afterthought following the Holocaust. By distracting from Nazi atrocities against Jews while accusing Jews of equal crimes against Palestinians, they seem to believe that they are nullifying the Jewish claim to statehood.
It is a similar ignorance about the history of anti-Semitism that allows everyone else not to see how this is nothing less than the latest manifestation of an ever-mutating Jew hatred. This malady has an unending appeal because of the way it always promises to liberate mankind, in one way or another, by “solving” the Jews. It was with great optimism that a former minister of the Dutch government recently expressed the opinion that transferring all the Jews from Israel to the United States would herald a new era of world peace. Of course, by the same logic it is the selfish Jews clinging to their state who bear ultimate responsibility for entrapping mankind in the ongoing horrors of war.
Anti-Semitism always expresses itself through the prevailing value system of the time. In Nazi Germany it was pseudo race-science, and in the Soviet Union Marxist doctrines, that were employed against the Jews. In the Middle Ages it was the teachings of the Church that fulfilled this role. Today, as human rights and international law are being hijacked to demonize the Jewish state, the UN is assuming a similar role to the one that the medieval papacy once had. It was encouraging then to hear Bernard Henri-Levy denouncing the delirium of anti-Zionism from the General Assembly chamber, voicing a truth that is all too rarely expressed.

Top British Jewish Columnist Blasts Media Hypocrisy Over Anti-Semitism

A leading British Jewish columnist has charged British media outlets with hypocrisy for decrying the rise in antisemitism on the one hand, while contributing to its escalation through biased reporting b about Israel on the other.
Writing in the Jewish Chronicle, Alex Brummer noted that the “campaign of abuse and delegitimization of Israel has been relentless through successive military campaigns in response to terror and rocket attacks. It reached a crescendo during the seven-week Operation Protective Edge operation in the summer of last year.”
Brummer declared it “troubling” that media outlets contributing to this perception are “now laudably publishing articles decrying the rise of antisemitism in Britain and anti-Jewish violence and death in France.”
“What they singularly fail to do is join up the dots and recognise they have contributed to abuse and violence against Jews as anti-Zionism has transmogrified into antisemitic acts,” Brummer said.
Brummer argued that traditional forms of antisemitism have played virtually no role in the escalation of antisemitic violence and opinion.
“It is not the old tropes of ‘Jews chasing money’ that led to the tragic violence in Paris,” Brummer said. “Nor did they cause the surge in antisemitic incidents in the UK that made it impossible for Jews in Pinner [a heavily Jewish London suburb] to go to shul without being subjected to abuse. It was deeply biased reporting from the Middle East that turned Palestinians into permanent victims and Jews into oppressors.”
Said Brummer: “What is really objectionable is that the very same media that for decades has jabbed its finger at Israel, demonizing the Jewish state, is now rushing to the barriers as the defenders of Jews against antisemitism.”

The New York Times Reports the ‘Ordinary Life’ of a Palestinian Terrorist

Even when New York Times Jerusalem Bureau Chief Jodi Rudoren is otherwise occupied, its coverage of Israel is worse than dismal; it is palpably distorted, if politely biased. Case in point: Isabel Kershner’s report (January 22) on the 23-year-old Palestinian whose knifing rampage on a Tel Aviv bus resulted in the stabbing of a dozen Israelis, several of whom are still hospitalized with serious wounds.
Terrorist assailant Hamza Matrouk, readers were informed, lived an “ordinary life” in a simple farming village in “the Israeli-occupied West Bank” (also known as biblical Judea and Samaria). Residents indicated that he was “quiet and introspective.” Yet “for young people and others in the village,” who were “angered by the war in Gaza” (now months ago) and by “recent tensions over the revered Aqsa Mosque” (tensions fomented by Palestinians on the Temple Mount, the holiest Jewish site), the knife-crazed assailant had become, predictably, “an instant hero.” As a neighbor declared: “We are proud of him. . . . Every Palestinian should be proud of him.”
Judging from her reporting, Ms. Kershner may also be proud of him. Matrouk must now be included among those individuals whose “spontaneity” is unencumbered by any organizational backing - as though Hamas, Hezbollah, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and the Al-Aqsa Brigade, among others, provide insufficient inspiration for terrorist attacks against Israeli civilians. He “was not considered an extremist” nor, Kirshner was informed, was he “known to be affiliated with any Palestinian political or militant faction.” He was just an ordinary 23-year-old, she reported, who found electrical work where he could and considerately helped his mother in her Ramallah clothing store.
Under arrest for his terrorist rampage, Matrouk cited the Gaza fighting, Al-Aqsa tensions, and “radical Islamic content on the Internet” as inspiration for his knife-slashing assault on innocent Israelis. To Ms. Kershner, however, his “story” has nothing to do with Palestinian or Islamic incitement and Hamas rocket attacks against Israelis: “it is one of dislocation in a conservative society.” But that may say more about her than about him. To be sure, his parents are divorced; his mother and children lived in a refugee camp for six years before moving to the simple village of Al Jib, which Ms. Kershner takes pains to point out is within view of “the high-rises of a nearby Jewish settlement.”
Ms. Kershner compares Matrouk to another “recent assailant” (a.k.a attempted assassin), who tried to kill Rabbi Yehuda Glick for his temerity in advocating Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount. Muataz Hijazi by name, he “also experienced a form of dislocation” after his family returned to Jerusalem from the United Arab Emirates. She concedes, however, that other Palestinian terrorists “had lived in the same houses since birth.” Unwittingly, she undercuts her own empathy for “dislocated” Palestinian assailants by including them with comfortably rooted terrorists.
Matrouk’s mother, she notes, “was careful not to condone her son’s act for fear of reprisal by the authorities, but she justified it.” It seemed so obvious, especially to a Times reporter in Jerusalem, when she explained: “All the Palestinian people are following what’s happening in Al Aqsa and Gaza, and he is one of the Palestinian people.” Ms. Kershner did not care to note that nothing is happening in Al Aqsa, except for Muslim prayer. And Gaza has been quiet for months, while Hamas doubtlessly prepares to dig more tunnels and rebuild its rocket supply. Matrouk was “said to be pious” and “prayed regularly at mosques.” And, his mother reported, “from a young age, we have always said we should do good things in order to go to paradise. In his opinion, this was a good thing.” Strange how paradise for Muslims is filled with murdered Jews.
End of story, at least for Isabel Kirshner. But for any thoughtful reader, hardly. Her abject embrace of Palestinian victimization is palpable. Her unwillingness to interview a single Israeli victim of Matrouk’s murderous assault is appalling. Her seeming inability to think critically, or write analytically, beyond a mother’s defense of her son is disgraceful. It is almost enough to make a reader yearn for Jodi Rudoren, who seems to be easing herself from Jerusalem coverage. If so, her torch has been passed to a worthy disciple.