anti-Semitism

IDF Rescues 4 Hostages Including Noa Argamani

IDF Rescues 4 Hostages Including Noa Argamani

JTA–Israeli forces rescued four hostages held since October 7 in the central Gaza Strip, including Noa Argamani, the festival-goer who was filmed screaming as she was carried away by terrorists on a motorcycle.

In addition to Argamani, 26, the army said in a statement that Almog Meir Jan, 22; Andrey Kozlov, 27; and Shlomi Ziv, 41, were rescued Saturday in the raid. All four were attending the Nova music festival on October 7 when Hamas terrorists killed approximately 1,200 people and abducted some 250, launching the war.

The army said special forces carried out the operation in Nuseirat in the center of the coastal territory. Arnon Zamora, a commander of the operation, was killed in the battle.

Hamas initially said “dozens” of Palestinians were killed in the operation. Media later quoted the Hamas-run Gaza health ministry as saying the number was more than 200. It did not report what proportion were civilians and what proportion were combatants.

More Attacks on Lithuanian Jewish Community

More Attacks on Lithuanian Jewish Community

Last week two more attacks were made against the Lithuanian Jewish Community. A man in a mask with the help of an accomplice brazenly stole the Israeli flag flying above the entrance of the building in Vilnius, then took the flag to a nearby park and cut it up with a knife. He also apparently threatened a person there with the same knife, but didn’t wound that person. The next day someone broke a window at the Bagel Shop Café operated by the LJC in the same building as LJC headquarters.

Both incidents were recorded on security video which has been turned over to police.

The LJC expects law enforcement will take swift action to punish the criminals in light of the rising danger posed to Jews in the Lithuanian capital.

“What’s most discouraging isn’t the crimes themselves, but people’s apathy. In the video recording you can clearly see pedestrians passing by who stopped to look back at the crazed masked man but didn’t bother to call the police. There is more than one living eye-witness in our community who has personally experienced what tragic consequences can ensue from remaining passive while crimes are committed,” LJC chairwoman Faina Kukliansky commented.

UNRWA Law to Designate Agency as Terror Organization Passes First Knesset Reading

UNRWA Law to Designate Agency as Terror Organization Passes First Knesset Reading

A bill aimed to designate the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) a terrorist organization passed its first reading in the Israeli Knesset on Wednesday.

If approved the Bill to Abolish the Immunity and Privileges of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) would cancel the privileges and immunities currently provided to employees of the UN organization.

Theose immunities established by the 1947 UN Privileges and Immunities Ordinance exempt the United Nations and its officials from legal action, taxes, import and export bans, among other things.

Diplomatic immunities extended to UNRWA staff would be revoked by Israel’s foreign affairs minister.

Safe Haven: Nazi Collaborators and the Failure of Justice

Safe Haven: Nazi Collaborators and the Failure of Justice

Dear friends,

Your final reminder about today’s Zoom event: Sunday, June 2, at 8:30 P.M. Israeli time (1:30 P.M. EDT).

Britain’s controversial 1991 War Crimes Act gave new powers to courts to try non-British citizens resident in the UK for war crimes committed during WWII. Despite the extensive investigative and legal work that followed and the expense of £11 million, it led to just one conviction.

Drawing on previously unavailable archival documents, Safe Haven considers for the first time why and how convictions failed to follow on the investigations, and why so many Nazi collaborators escaped justice and never even appeared in a criminal court. It provokes a timely reconsideration of the relationship between law, history and truth.

We will be joined by the book’s co-author Jon Silverman and a returning guest speaker for us, Dr. Efraim Zuroff, the chief Nazi-hunter of the Simon Wiesenthal Center and the director of its Israel Office and Eastern European affairs.

Jon Silverman is professor emeritus for media and criminal justice at the University of Bedfordshire. He’s a former BBC home affairs correspondent in which role he won the Sony Radio Journalist of the Year award for his coverage of the UK’s investigations into Nazi collaborators. He reported from both the Rwanda and Yugoslavia tribunals and has written extensively for journals on international war crimes justice, including the relationship between the International Criminal Court and Africa. He is the author of four books.

In his role at the Simon Wiesenthal Center, Efraim Zuroff has discovered the escape destinations all over the world of more than 3,000 suspected Nazi war criminals and has facilitated the exposure and prosecution of dozens of them. The author of four books (translated into 15 languages) and more than 500 articles on Nazi-hunting, Holocaust history and contemporary Jewish life and identity, Zuroff is one of the leading spokesmen in the world on Holocaust-related issues.

Join us live on zoom:

Topic: Nazi Collaborators and the Failure of Justice
Time: June 2, 2024, 8:30 P.M. Israeli time/1:30 P.M. EDT

Join the zoom meeting here: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/9411014000?omn=81972506471
Meeting ID: 941 101 4000

LJC Chairwoman Sends Thank-You Letter to Israeli Leaders for New Legislation Recognizing Diaspora Victims of Anti-Semitism

LJC Chairwoman Sends Thank-You Letter to Israeli Leaders for New Legislation Recognizing Diaspora Victims of Anti-Semitism

Lithuanian Jewish Community chairwoman Faina Kukliansky has sent thank-you letters to Israeli president Isaac Herzog, minister for Diaspora affairs and combating anti-Semitism Amichai Chikli and Israeli ambassador to Lithuania Hadas Wittenberg Silverstein for the Israeli Government’s recent resolution recognizing victims of anti-Semitism living in the Diaspora.

§§§

May 29, 202

On behalf of the Lithuanian Jewish Community, I extend our gratitude to the State of Israel for historic government resolution 492 which officially recognizes Jewish victims of anti-Semitic acts in the Diaspora.

This resolution carries huge importance, especially in these times when the Jewish people face increased anti-Semitism globally, exacerbated by the ongoing war between Israel and the brutal Hamas organization. Your leadership in spearheading this initiative assures us that the memories of those who suffered from anti-Semitism and hate crimes, targeted solely because of their Jewish identity, are honored, and thus solidarity among Jews worldwide is reinforced.

We sincerely appreciate the support of the State of Israel for its dedication to the welfare of Jews around the world. We strongly believe that these commitments strengthen the bonds within our global Jewish community and our resilience.

With sincere regards,

Faina Kukliansky, chairwoman
Lithuanian Jewish Community

Israeli Government Recognizes Diaspora Victims of Anti-Semitism in Historic Resolution

Israeli Government Recognizes Diaspora Victims of Anti-Semitism in Historic Resolution

The historic resolution adopted on May 27, 2024, follows a call made in 2022 by Yaakov Hagoel, chairman of the World Zionist Organization.

by Jerusalem Post staff, May 27, 2024

The Israeli Government Monday approved Resolution 492 officially commemorating Jews in the Diaspora who have lost their lives due to their Jewishness in hostile acts with an anti-Semitic motive.

For the first time since the establishment of the state, the Government on Monday approved a proposal by Diaspora Affairs and Combating Anti-Semitism minister Amichai Chikli to recognize the State of Israel’s duty as the nation-state of the Jewish people to officially commemorate Diaspora Jews who are not Israeli citizens and were murdered because of their Jewishness in hostile acts based on motives of anti-Semitism. The Ruderman Plan as the ministry dubbed it was named after the Ruderman Family Foundation which laid out the framework for promoting this historic step.

The Government established a special committee headed by director-general of the Diaspora Affairs Ministry with national institutions and representatives of public bodies. The committee submitted its recommendations to the Government Monday which were approved unanimously and which included the determination of a commemoration date and establishment of a dedicated monument, making information about the fallen accessible by creating a website and a database, organizing educational activities and integrating them into the formal and informal education systems.

Full story here.

ICC Oversteps Jurisdiction

ICC Oversteps Jurisdiction

by Geoff Vasil

The recent request by an International Criminal Court prosecutor for a three-person panel of judges at the ICC in the Hague to issue arrest warrants for the prime minister and defense minister of Israel oversteps the court’s jurisdiction.

First, Israel isn’t a member-state to the ICC. Second, while the ICC recognizes Palestine as a state, Palestine doesn’t have the judicial abilities to act as a full-fledged state. Third, according to the ICC’s own rule or statutes, it must first petition the offending state aka defendant to investigate alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity itself.

Israel’s courts have already undertaken investigations into alleged war crimes by the Israeli Defense Forces against aid workers and civilians in the Gaza Strip.

Fourth, the ICC isn’t qualified to assess whether Israel is targeting Gazan Palestinians for extermination aka genocide by means of starvation and casualty attrition. In point of fact that’s the job for the UN’s International Court of Justice in the Hague. The UN has downgraded casualties reported by the Hamas suicide cult’s health department to about half of what the latter have been reporting, putting the ration of enemy combatants to civilian deaths to about 1:1, which is the lowest ratio in any war, let alone an urban house-to-house conflict, in the 20th and 21st centuries.

ICC Prosecutor Seeks Arrest Warrant for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Hamas Leader Yehya Sinwar

ICC Prosecutor Seeks Arrest Warrant for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Hamas Leader Yehya Sinwar

Associated Press, May 20, 2024

THE HAGUE, Netherlands–The chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court said Monday he is seeking arrest warrants for Israeli and Hamas leaders, including Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in connection with their actions during the seven-month war.

Karim Khan said that he believes Netanyahu, his defense minister Yoav Gallant and three Hamas leaders–Yehya Sinwar, Mohammed Deif and Ismail Haniyeh–are responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity in the Gaza Strip and Israel.

Speaking of the Israeli actions, Khan said in a statement that “the effects of the use of starvation as a method of warfare, together with other attacks and collective punishment against the civilian population of Gaza are acute, visible and widely known. … They include malnutrition, dehydration, profound suffering and an increasing number of deaths among the Palestinian population, including babies, other children and women.”

Of the Hamas actions on October 7, he said that he saw for himself “the devastating scenes of these attacks and the profound impact of the unconscionable crimes charged in the applications filed today. Speaking with survivors, I heard how the love within a family, the deepest bonds between a parent and a child, were contorted to inflict unfathomable pain through calculated cruelty and extreme callousness. These acts demand accountability.”

Full article here.

UN General Assembly Approves Hamas Genocide against Israelis with Vote for Full Palestinian Membership

UN General Assembly Approves Hamas Genocide against Israelis with Vote for Full Palestinian Membership

On Friday the General Assembly of the United Nations meeting in New York voted to recognize Palestine as a full member-state of the organization, replacing Palestine’s observer status. The ballot was largely a straw vote and the smart money is on a veto in the Security Council, although embattled US president Joe Biden could allow it to pass in order to placate Muslim voters in Michigan to help secure votes in the upcoming US presidential election.

Voting in favor of full endorsement of Hamas’s policy of genocide against Israelis were 143 members, including Estonia, Russia, China, Iran, Syria, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, Australia, Namibia, Nepal, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria and Norway, among others.

The nine voting against were Argentina, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Israel, Micronesia. Nauru, Palau, Papua New Guinea and the US.

Canada, Lithuania, Latvia, Austria, Fiji, Finland, Germany, Georgia, Italy, Malawi, Marshall Islands, Monaco, the Netherlands, North Macedonia, Romania, Sweden, Switzerland, the UK and Vanuatu, among others, abstained.

Full results here.

Yom HaAtzmaut Today

Yom HaAtzmaut Today

Israeli celebrates its 76th birthday today on Israeli independence day, or Yom haAtzmaut. Israel’s Memorial Day or Yom haZikaron was marked Monday in Israel, the day of remembrance of all those who have fallen in defense of Israel, including Jewish partisans from Lithuania.

Lithuanian Jewish Community chairwoman Faina Kukliansky issued a special greeting for the holiday:

“Today Israel marks Independence Day for the 76th time. It is darkened by the shadow of the lives of thousands of our dear people taken by the October 7 attack by Hamas terrorists and our thoughts for the 132 hostages still held in Gaza.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with them, the fallen soldiers and the victims to whose loved ones we send our deepest condolences and support.

Eurovision Fails to Ghettoize Israel

Eurovision Fails to Ghettoize Israel

by Geoff Vasil

Opaque participation rules, a system of internal patronage, sad attempts at bad pop music and a voting system which emulates the worst Third World satrapy. Yet, the Eurovision Song Contest has a cult following in Europe, and has had for many decades. In practice this race to the bottom of pop culture has led to performers intentionally playing to the lowest common pop-denominator, making themselves and the contest into a complete caricature, or a caricature-within-a-caricature, if you like.

Besides the byzantine voting process, “reformed” in recent years for a proportional voting system where unelected local/national juries or commissions account for perhaps (no one really knows) half of the total vote, while nation-state-member audiences call in their votes amounting to perhaps half the total, no one has really defined what “European” means in terms of this odd competition. Earlier contestants included Morocco and Lebanon, Australia seems to have secured a permanent vote, and Israel has been an on-again, off-again participant and voting block.

This year around 20,000 protestors descended on Malmo in Sweden–Sweden is the venue because their team, band, or horde, won last year–to demand Israel be excluded.

In semi-finals whoever actually runs the Eurovision Song Contest demanded the Israeli group rename their entry from “October Rain” to something else, which became “Hurricane,” although the actual message of the song seems to revolve around Hamas’s unprecedented atrocities against Israeli civilians on October 7, 2023.

Yom HaShoah Observed in Lithuania

Yom HaShoah Observed in Lithuania

While air-raid sirens blared in Israel to mark the Israeli Holocaust remembrance day Yom haShoah, in Lithuania a cantor performed kaddish for the dead. Beyond remembering the victims, the day also commemorates the Jewish heroes, the partisans who took up arms against the Nazis in World War II, as well as the prisoners of the ghettos who undertook spiritual resistance, creating literature, art, plays and music, in part laying the foundation for the future Jewish state. This commemorative day has never been more important and meaningful than it is today, where we see daily outbreaks of anti-Semitism around the world. Thank you to everyone who took part in our humble commemoration.

#IzraelioAmbasadaLietuvoje #JAVambasadaLietuvoje #NyderlandųKaralystėsAmbasada #PrancūzijosAmbasadaLietuvoje #VilniausŠolomoAleichemoORTgimnazija

Lithuanian Constitutional Court Recognizes Anti-Semitic Statements Violate the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania

Lithuanian Constitutional Court Recognizes Anti-Semitic Statements Violate the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania

April 26, 2024

PRESS RELEASE

Statement from the Lithuanian Jewish Community:

Lithuanian Constitutional Court Recognizes Anti-Semitic Statements Violate the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania

The Constitutional Court of Lithuania has ruled that the continuous anti-Semitic statements made by one politician attacking Israel and Lithuanian Jews are a breach of his parliamentary oath and a gross violation of the Lithuanian constitution.

In its decision on April 25 the Constitutional Court acknowledged that through statements posted on his social media platforms, which included derogatory, dignity-diminishing, and mocking descriptions of Jews, inciting intolerance, and belittling the tragedy of the Holocaust, MP Remigijus Žemaitaitis systematically and deliberately demonstrated hatred based on ethnic origin.

Following the decision chairman of the Constitutional Court Gintaras Goda emphasized to gathered journalists that while the constitution provides the right of a person to hold beliefs and express them freely, it prohibits demeaning the dignity of others, violating their rights and demonstrating disrespect or hatred.

This ruling of the Constitutional Court does not by itself trigger any legal accountability (including criminal) for these actions by MP Žemaitaitis. Based on the finding, however, the Lithuanian Parliament may form an impeachment commission which would present its findings, after which members of parliament could vote in a secret ballot whether to revoke Žemaitaitis’s status as an MP.

Columbia U Locks Jewish Professor Out

Columbia U Locks Jewish Professor Out

Outspoken Jewish professor barred from Columbia campus while administration turns blind eye to even bigger tent city springing up

New York, New York–A Columbia University professor who has been a vocal critic of the administration’s response to the ongoing anti-Israel student protests was barred from campus Monday after he tried to lead a pro-Jewish rally at the Ivy League college.

Israel-born Shai Davidai, an assistant professor at Columbia Business School and an outspoken supporter of the Jewish state, was told that his ID had been “deactivated,” even as a massive new tent city sprang up on the Morningside Heights campus with some 200 protesters–all of whom would have had to use their Columbia IDs to get in.

Davidai said he was locked out because he asked university staff at a meeting whether Hamas was a terrorist group or not. After deactivating his entrance card, security offered to escort the Jewish man to Columbia’s mathematics department, claiming they couldn’t insure his safety anywhere else on campus.

Story and pictures here.

Passover Greetings from Australian Opposition Leader

Passover Greetings from Australian Opposition Leader

Leader of the Liberal Party Peter Dutton sends Passover greetings to the Jewish community:

On behalf of the Coalition, my warmest wishes to Australia’s resilient Jewish community as you celebrate Passover.

A festival that acknowledges the importance of faith, fortitude and freedom, Passover is of profound significance for Jewish people around the world.

This year, the events of October 7–and the unprecedented level of anti-Semitism that has ensued–have cast a shadow over Passover celebrations.

The world must never forget what happened last year on that day of depravity. The monsters of Hamas acted with glee as they tormented their victims. They brutally murdered 1,200 people in what was the greatest loss of Jewish life on a single day since the Holocaust. And they vowed to repeat their savagery many times over until Israel is annihilated.

London Metropolitan Police Threaten to Arrest Man for Being “Openly Jewish”

London Metropolitan Police Threaten to Arrest Man for Being “Openly Jewish”

Met criticized over arrest threat to “openly Jewish” man near pro-Palestine demo

Gideon Falter, chief executive of the Campaign Against Anti-Semitism, was wearing a kippah skull cap when he was stopped from crossing the road.

The head of a charity combating anti-Semitism said the Metropolitan Police are enforcing “no-go zones for Jews” after footage showed him being threatened with arrest close to a pro-Palestine march.

Gideon Falter, chief executive of the Campaign Against Anti-Semitism, was wearing a kippah skull cap when he was stopped from crossing the road near the demonstration in the Aldwych area of London on Saturday afternoon.

The video clip which was posted on social media showed Falter being told by police that he was “quite openly Jewish” and causing a “breach of peace.”

Falter said he had been walking in the capital after attending synagogue and was not there to counter-protest.

The footage showed one police officer saying: “You are quite openly Jewish, this is a pro-Palestinian march, I’m not accusing you of anything but I’m worried about the reaction to your presence.”

Lithuanian Jewish Community Expresses Support for Israel under Attack by Terrorists

Lithuanian Jewish Community Expresses Support for Israel under Attack by Terrorists

The Lithuanian Jewish Community, an association of 32 organizations, staunchly condemns the unprecedented terrorist attack Saturday night by the Islamic Republic of Iran and its allies against the state of Israel, which was bombarded by hundreds of rockets and drones.

We express our support for our brothers and sisters in Israel and call upon the leaders of Lithuania to undertake initiatives to apply sanctions against Iran which spreads, supports and carries out in all possible ways the ideology of terrorism around the world.

“We cannot close our eyes when we see terrorism. This evil thousands of kilometers away from Lithuania has reached all our homes. We learned that fully following the October 7 attack by Hamas terrorists against Israel, after which anti-Semitism grew drastically around the world and in Lithuania as well. The past teaches us that apathy can be very expensive, at the cost of thousands and even millions of lives. Let’s not let the Holocaust happen again,” Lithuanian Jewish Community and attorney Faina Kukliansky said.

Taking into account the arising situation and the recommendations by world Jewish leaders, the Lithuanian Jewish Community has increased protection at secure locations and calls upon everyone to remain vigilant. Saturday’s events show that when we combine forces, we are able to resist even the most horrific attack by the enemy.

Communal Violence in Australia: Hamas Supporter Stabs Bishop in Sydney, Congregation Fights Back

Communal Violence in Australia: Hamas Supporter Stabs Bishop in Sydney, Congregation Fights Back

Reeling from the recent mass stabbings and mass murder in Bondi Junction, western Sydney became the target of a Hamas supporter who stabbed Bishop Mar Mari Emmanuel six times as he delivered a sermon at his Christ the Good Shepherd Church in the Fairfield area.

While the Bondi Junction stabbing spree was originally believed to be an Islamist attack as well–the neighborhood is densely inhabited by Jews and is the location for Sydney’s main synagogue, it turned out the attacker there was mentally ill and targeted women.

The stabbing at the Good Shepherd was live-streamed. The bishop fell down as the attacker yelled Islamic catch-phrases, approached the podium and stabbed the surprised clergy man with a large knife.. Parishioners rushed the lectern, subdued the attacker and held him for police. The assailant lost several fingers during the subduction.

Lithuanian Makabi Rep at Future Leaders Conference

Lithuanian Makabi Rep at Future Leaders Conference

Lithuanian Makabi Athletics Club member Alanas Rynkevičius participated at the Future Leaders forum in Paris from March 28 to 31, a gathering of youth leaders from the various Maccabi organizations throughout Europe.

The forum addressed the topic of anti-Semitism. Other topics, strategies and projects were discussed including the upcoming European Maccabi youth games in London.

Jewish Australians Lodge Vilification Complaints against Anti-Semitic Islamic Preachers

Jewish Australians Lodge Vilification Complaints against Anti-Semitic Islamic Preachers

Two Islamic clerics who described Jewish Australians as “vile,” “vermin,” “monsters,” “rats” and “bloodthirsty” have had vilification complaints lodged against them. One appeared to be calling openly upon Muslims to murder Jews.

The largest body of Jewish Australians has launched a vilification complaint against Abu Ousayd, also known as Wissam Haddad, over a sermon delivered last year.

In complaints to the Australian Human Rights Commission, the Executive Council of Australian Jewry says the two “anti-Semitic sermons” delivered by western Sydney clerics Wissam Haddad and Sheikh Ahmed Zoud included “derogatory generalisations about Jewish people”.

The complaint also names Haddad’s Al Madina Dawah Centre and the trading company of Zoud’s mosque.