Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Social media accounts of Austrian girls 'taken over to pretend they are fighting in Syria'

Extremists have been accused of manipulating the social media accounts of two teenage girls from Austria to make it seem as if they were fighting in Syria.School friends of Samra Kesinovic, 16, and her friend Sabina Selimovic, 15, confirmed that they had become radicalised after attending a local mosque. The head of their school in the Austrian capital Vienna, Peter Slanar, said: "I would have said a year ago that they were perfectly normal teenage girls, but then the older, Samra, started sending pictures of herself in the Muslim headscarf to fellow pupils and was trying to convert everybody to her point of view. "There were vandalism incidents in which tables and walls had the words "I love Al Qaeda" written on them. "We had to act when they started saying that America was to blame for the September 11 attack. That was simply going too far. "When there were several attempts at intervention that didn't bring a result, we invited Samra's mother for a conversation and she was very annoyed about what her daughter was doing, and took her out of the school in January." The girls are then thought to have travelled to Turkey, where messages and photographs were posted online claiming that they were fighting with their new husbands in Syria. But the pictures were quickly shown to be a fake and now Interpol working together with police in Turkey and Austria say that they have managed to confirm that the girls are not in Syria. They believe the pair are in Turkey, and that whoever helped them to leave the country is manipulating their social media accounts to turn them into pin-up girls for the call to join the civil war. The family said they have never believed the messages were written by the girls, and authorities suspect that the teenagers had been tricked into leaving the country. The girls come from Bosnian refugee families who settled in Austria after the ethnic wars of the 1990's and were born in the Alpine Republic. The faked photos on their Facebook pages show them brandishing Kalashnikov rifles – and in some cases surrounded by armed men. It also showed them announcing their marriage plans so that they could become holy warriors and added: "Death is our goal". Austrian Interior Ministry spokesman Karl-Heinz Grundboeck said that the girls were some of hundreds from the West who had been indoctrinated by extremists. He said: "These were people that did not become extremists from nowhere, somebody was responsible."

UKIP on course to deliver political earthquake

UKIP's European Election campaign is on course to deliver a gigantic political earthquake according to two new polls out today.

The first from TNS-BMRB shows UKIP in first place with 36%. A ComRes poll has UKIP on 38%, an 11% lead over Labour and 20% ahead of the Conservatives.
UKIP: 36%
Labour: 27%
Conservatives: 18%
Liberal Democrats 10%
UKIP: 38%
Labour: 27%
Conservatives: 18%
Liberal Democrats: 8%
UKIP Director of Communications Patrick O'Flynn said: "These two latest polls chime with what we are picking up on the doorsteps. People are sick of the pro-Brussels political establishment and are flocking to UKIP for an alternative.

“In particular they want Britain to take back control of its borders and impose immigration controls with regard to other EU countries. And they really do not like seeing that view described as racist.

“There is no room for complacency at all and everyone at UKIP will be working flat out right up until May 22 to deliver the best possible result in the European and local elections.

“But there is no doubt that the signs are very promising for us just now and morale is extremely high. Our message to all UKIP members is to keep getting out on the campaign trail and help us make political history.”​

Subway removes ham and bacon from nearly 200 stores and offers halal meat only after 'strong demand' from Muslims

Almost 200 branches of Subway have cut ham and bacon from their menus, serving halal meat in response to calls from their Muslim customers. The sandwich chain said 'following a strong demand from our Muslim customers', 185 outlets in the UK and Ireland have introduced the meat, which is prepared under strict Islamic rules. In Arabic the word halal means 'permitted' or 'lawful' and defines anything that is allowed or lawful according to the Qur'an. It is often used to indicate food - particularly meat - has been prepared in accordance with Muslim principles and techniques. Muslims are forbidden from eating any non-halal food and meat from pigs and Subway said customers can identify those stores selling halal food by the special 'All meats are Halal' sign, which must be displayed in participating branches. In the halal-only branches ham and bacon has been substituted for turkey ham and rashers. Many animal charities condemn halal slaughter as being cruel to animals. Traditionally in halal abattoirs the throats of the animals are cut while they are fully conscious - an act many campaigners say is inhumane and needlessly cruel. In non-halal abattoirs, livestock are stunned before killing to prevent any unnecessary suffering. Some halal butchers also practise pre-stunning, though it is not permitted by some Islamic scholars. In Britain, killing an animal without prior stunning is illegal, but the law gives special exemption to Muslim and Jewish meat producers on the grounds of religion. There are thought to be around 12 abattoirs dedicated to unstunned slaughter in the UK, while hundreds practise stunned halal slaughter. A Subway spokeswoman told MailOnline all halal meat served in the participating branches is from animals who were stunned prior to slaughter. She said: 'The growing popularity of the Subway chain with the diverse multicultural population across the UK and Ireland means we have to balance the values of many religious communities with the overall aim of improving the health and welfare standards of animals. 'We put a programme into place in 2007 to ensure that the population demographic is taken into account when new store openings are considered in order that we meet consumer demand in each location. All ham and bacon is replaced by turkey ham and turkey rashers and all meat is prepared according to Islamic halal rules. . 'All our suppliers comply with EU animal welfare legislation as a minimum and we require suppliers of halal products to adopt the stunning of animals prior to their slaughter. 'All halal meats are certified by the appropriate halal authorities. 'All halal Subway stores have numerous signs stating that they serve halal food. 'These are situated on the menu panels, nutritional information and in the front window of the store.' Animal campaigning charity PETA urged people to opt for a vegetarian diet to ensure they have the best interests of animals at heart. A spokesman said: 'At the best of times, meat is a product of a bloody and violent industry with no respect for other living beings who value their lives in the same way that we do and experience the same pain and terror that Subways' customers would if they were killed for a sandwich. 'Most religions, including Islam, preach kindness to animals, but words are one thing and practice another. 'As the Dalai Lama said, "My religion is kindness". And a diet that expresses kindness, is open to all religions and truly respects animal rights is a vegan one. 'Subway-goers, no matter what their religion, can eat with a clear conscience by opting for the veggie patty, the veggie delight or, heaven forbid, a salad.' Speaking about the general issue of halal slaughter, an RSPCA spokeswoman added: 'Scientific research has clearly shown that slaughter of an animal without stunning can cause unnecessary suffering, and the RSPCA is opposed to the slaughter of any animal without first making it insensible to pain and distress. 'At present, the only legal exemptions to stunning during slaughter exist for kosher and halal methods of slaughter, however, it is important to differentiate between ‘religious’ and ‘non-stun’ slaughter as around 90 per cent of all halal in the UK receives a stun before slaughter. 'Our concern has nothing to do with the expression of religious belief but with the practice of killing by throat cutting without pre-stunning. 'We believe that meat produced from animals stunned or not stunned before slaughter should be clearly labelled to allow consumer choice, and continue to press for changes in the law that would improve the welfare of all farm animals at the time of slaughter.'

Dutch Memorial Day to Feature Muslim 'Shadow Holocaust' Event

Holland is planning to hold its own Holocaust Memorial Day on May 4, in a show of somber solidarity for the victims of Nazi Germany and a stand against anti-Semitism.
One Dutch Muslim group has planned its own memorial day, however - and will be commemorating "the ethnic cleansing of Palestine" on that day instead.
The Platform Bewust Moslim group, whose name means “Platform Aware Muslim,” is planning to hold its own counter-ceremony on May 4 in Hilversum, near Amsterdam, Jewish news agency Joods Omroep reported Monday.
The event, dubbed ”Palestine, the Shadow Holocaust,” was advertised as a symposium offering “a review of the ethnic cleansing of Palestine and the passive attitude of the international community” and is slated to take place at Hilversum’s Al-Amal mosque.
May 4 is Holland's Remembrance of the Dead day, a Memorial Day both for Dutch civilians and military personnel killed in national wars and for victims of Nazi Germany - on the front and in the death camps.
Since the event was announced, the municipality of Hilversum has received 45 objections urging it to prevent or postpone the event, Joods Omroep reported. Some complaints also were made to the Center for Information and Documentation on Israel, or CIDI, a watchdog group based in The Hague.
Hilversum Mayor Pieter Broertjes told the news agency he is discussing the relevant issues with organizers, “including the possibility of postponement.”
Dutch anti-Semitism is on the rise, experts say.
In February, a Simon Wiesenthal Center official sent a strongly worded letter to Dutch Deputy Prime Minister Lodewijk Frans Asscher urging him to combat the trend, after a statistic from the University of Bielefeld surfaced showing that 39% of Dutch citizens believe Israel is conducting a "war of extermination" against the Palestinian Arabs.

Guardian’s Former Jerusalem Correspondent Smears Jews on Holocaust Remembrance Day

By Adam Levick

At 10:00 Monday morning, millions of Israelis stood at attention as sirens could be heard throughout the state in commemoration of Yom HaShoah (Holocaust and Heroism Remembrance Day) – Israel’s day of commemoration for the six million Jews who perished in the Holocaust.
Shortly after the sirens stopped, and colleagues in our office returned to their desks, we noticed a series of Tweets by the Guardian’s former Jerusalem correspondent Chris McGreal.
The anti-Zionist malice of the Guardian “journalist” has been the subject of many posts at this blog. The far left propagandist – who fancies the idea that Israeli snipers target Palestinian children, and has shown himself obsessed with the power of the Israel lobby – has achieved the rare status as one of the few Guardian reporters singled out by the Community Security Trust in their annual report on anti-Semitic discourse.
Here are a few of the Tweets today from McGreal, enthusiastically responding to news that the Jewish state was smeared again with the Apartheid lie.
Tutu, Carter, Olmert may said before but Kerry warning Israel becoming apartheid state still astonishing (and true)
— Chris McGreal (@ChrisMcGreal) April 28, 2014
A question to be asked amid inevitable torrent of denials that Israel an apartheid state: why do so many of its Arab citizens say it is?
— Chris McGreal (@ChrisMcGreal) April 28, 2014
why does apartheid label sting Israel so much? because it challenges mantra that occupation is about security & discrimination is not racial
— Chris McGreal (@ChrisMcGreal) April 28, 2014
As the Tweets demonstrate, McGreal isn’t just claiming that Apartheid exists in the West Bank, but in Israel within the green line.
Of course, the Apartheid charge – the intellectual roots of which lie in Soviet propaganda from the 1970s – against Israel has been definitively refuted by many serious commentators and South Africans who actually lived under Apartheid.
First, for clarify, here’s an accurate definition of Apartheid:
‘Apartheid’ is the Dutch-Afrikaans term for separation, used to describe the racial segregation and discrimination enforced violently by white minority governments on non-whites in South Africa from 1948 to 1994. During those years a comprehensive system of racial classification divided the population into four categories – white, black coloured (i.e. mixed-race) and Asian. The black majority could not vote in general elections or marry white people. They were segregated from white people and barred from doing most skilled work. They even need permission from white authorities to so much as move from one segregated residential neighborhood to another segregated neighborhood. Further, an official state-promoted racist ideology of white supremacy justified all of this.
In the context of the definition above, here are some facts based in part on a comprehensive rebuttal published by Professor Alan Johnson at BICOM.
  • There are NO such racial laws in Israel.
  • Israel is a multi-racial, multi-ethnic democracy, in which Arab, Druze, and other minorities in Israel are guaranteed equal rights. ALL citizens vote in elections on an equal basis.
  • Discrimination based on race is against the law.
  • Universities, hospitals, and all public facilities are integrated.
  • Some Israeli towns and  cities are mixed Arab-Jewish (e.g. Acre, Haifa, Jaffa, Lod and Ramle).
  • The Israeli Courts are effective in countering unfair discrimination. Israel’s Arab minority participates fully in the political process.
  • There is no ideology of racial supremacy within Zionism
Additionally, here are some poll results that wildly contradict McGreal’s suggestion that Arab Israelis believe they suffer from Apartheid:
  • According to a poll conducted by Harvard’s John Kennedy School of Government, 77 % of the Arab citizens of Israel say that they prefer living in Israel to any other country in the world.
  • According to a 2012 Israeli Democracy Index survey, 62.3 % and 78 %of the Arab citizens of Israel have confidence in the police and Supreme Court respectively; a slightly higher level of confidence than Israeli Jews.
  • According to a report by the Arab-Israeli NGO, Sikkuy, 90 % of Arab citizens of Israel see their future in the State of Israel.
Beyond the specific smear, however, it should be emphasized that this isn’t a one-off for McGreal, and seems to represent a broader antipathy towards Jewish communities in the diaspora.
On February 6th and 7th 2006, McGreal published two reports attempting to portray Israel as an Apartheid and colonial state, and went further than merely defaming Israel by lashing out at Jews more broadly in a manner reminiscent of David Ward’s infamous ‘Jews of all people‘ smear on International Holocaust Memorial Day.
Here’s a passage from McGreal’s report, in the context of comparing Jewish behavior to that of the Afrikaner S. African regime:
[Israel's Jewish] backers question how anyone can accuse them, as Jews at the end of a long line of persecuted generations, of racism, or in any way of resembling the old Afrikaner regime. But for years, much of South Africa’s Jewish population and successive Israeli governments made their own pact with apartheid – a deal that exchanged near silence by most South African Jews on a great moral issue for acceptance, and clandestine cooperation between Israel and the Afrikaner government that drew the two countries into a hidden embrace.
First, most South African Jews actually voted against the pro-Apartheid National Party during the Apartheid years, and Jews were over-represented among anti-Apartheid activists, prompting Nelson Mandela to write the following in his autobiography:
“I have found Jews to be more broad-minded than most whites on issues of race and politics, perhaps because they themselves have historically been victims of prejudice.”
However, beyond the rebuttal of his specific claims, McGreal’s accusations against Jews – not just Israelis, but Jews qua Jews – needs a broader response.
Here are some excerpts from an essay written by Chas Newkey-Burden in response to David Ward, MP, which seem apt in light of McGreal’s latest attack:
…there is still one anti-Israel argument that makes my jaw drop. And it is one that is made with unfortunate frequency. It is the “they-of-all-people” argument: the suggestion that the Jews, having faced extraordinary persecution, should know better than anyone not to be oppressors.
Put aside for a moment that the “oppression” which proponents of this argument are accusing Israel of committing is usually imaginary. When directed by gentiles towards Jews, the “they-of-all-people” argument is in its very essence so fundamentally ill-judged and unjust, and voiced with such a breathtaking lack of self-awareness, that my spirit flags when I hear it.

I contend that, as a result of the Holocaust and what preceded it, it is we gentiles who should know better. The Holocaust followed centuries of slander, persecution, violence and murder committed by gentiles against Jews. So it is not you who have an increased responsibility to behave morally, but us.
For instance, something that we gentiles should know better than to do is lazily accuse Jewish people, or the Jewish state itself, of any misdemeanour. We have seen what centuries of slander against the Jewish people led to during the 1930s and ’40s. We see the hatred, heartbreak and bloodshed that such anti-Jewish libels continue to provoke, particularly in the Middle East.
Yet much of the world still continues to delight in damning Israel with indecent haste. From Al Dura (the false claim that Israeli forces murdered a boy in Gaza) to Jenin, from the Goldstone Report to the Gaza flotilla; time and again the world has found Israel guilty of a particular crime before all the evidence was available. When the full picture emerged and exonerated Israel it was too late to undo the damage. We gentiles, of all people, should know better.

Let us strip the “they-of-all-people” argument down to its very basics: gentiles telling Jews that we killed six million of your people and that as a result it is you, not us, who have lessons to learn; that it is you, not us, who need to clean up your act. It is an argument of atrocious, spiteful insanity. Do not accept it; turn it back on those who offer it. For it is us, not you, who should know better.
Finally, to answer a query in one of McGreel’s Tweets, the reason why the ‘Apartheid’ charge “stings” Jews so much is because, like so many other accusations leveled against us through history, it’s a vicious lie – agitprop which shares an unmistakable ideological similitude with the ‘Zionism = Racism’ narrative and other such canards associated with malicious efforts to cast Israel as fundamentally illegitimate, a state beyond the moral pale.
The lesson for non-Jews on Yom HaShoah should be clear:  You can’t honor Holocaust memory nor lay claim to the mantle of anti-racism if a large percentage of the world’sliving Jews have been ‘expelled from the realm of your imaginative sympathy’ -and indeed the only Jews you seem to much fancy have been dead for more than 70 years.

Trivializing the Shoah and Fabricating an African ‘Holocaust’

By Steven Plaut

In recent decades a new trend of Holocaust trivialization has developed.  While not quite as obscene as Holocaust Deniers claiming that the Holocaust was all some sort of hoax, these fabricators are morally the next best thing.  They claim that the Holocaust of Jews by the Nazis may have been quite horrific but it pales in magnitude when compared with the “other Holocausts” of even greater dimensions.  And increasingly the “other Holocaust” to which they point is the “genocide” of Africans in the slave trade.
After all, argue the “other Holocaust” propagandists, in World War II there were “only” six million Jews murdered, but a far larger number of Africans were murdered as part and parcel of the slave trade.  Such pseudo-historic nonsense has been repeated so often that it is finding its way into mainstream textbooks and media.  Even Israeli leftist columnists are citing the “African Holocaust,” illustrated by one column I cited earlier this week by a radical hater of his own country.
The “African Holocaust Lobby” likes to toss out numbers purportedly estimating the population killed during the African slave trade, starting at around 10 million and often going as high as 60 million.  This allows the Holocaust trivializers to dismiss demands that the Jewish Shoah be commemorated, since it was “only one sixth” the magnitude of the “African genocide.”    
The “60 million” number appears to have been originally invented by American Afrofascists, militant black racists and race hucksters.  The number however has been repeated so often that it is showing up in books and media.  Consider “Critical Pedagogy and Cognition: An Introduction to a Postformal Educational Psychology,” written by a psychologist, Curry Malott, Springer Publishers, 2011.  Malott is no historian and certainly no demographer, yet he speaks about 60 million Africans killed in the “slave trade genocide.”  A more widely cited book referring to the “60 million” is one by a pseudo-historian at the University of Hawaii, one David Stannard, Professor of American Studies,  in his book American Holocaust (published 1992 by Oxford University Press).  He estimates a 75-80% mortality rate in slave trade transit to come up with his number.
So what are we to make of all this?  Let us begin by pointing out how absurd the claims about a 60 million victim African genocide are.  The number not only exceeds the total number of Africans enslaved (not just those sold in the American colonies and then the US) by a factor of six.  Indeed, the 60 million number exceeds the entire population of sub-Sahara Africa in the 18th century, when the slave trade was at its height.  In Concise Economic History of the World by R. Cameron, it is estimated that the entire population of the African continent in 1800 was about 90 million people, but a large portion of those were non-black people living in the Arab areas of North Africa.  That leaves the entire sub-Saharan population at less than the fictional 60 million “genocide victims” supposedly murdered in the slave trade.
So while it is simple poppycock to toss around numbers like 60 million as estimates of the human cost of the slave trade, just how many Africans were really intentionally murdered as part of the slave trade?   The answer is – almost none.
Now nothing here is meant to diminish the suffering and human tragedy of slavery in the era of slave trading.   I have no desire to excuse or minimize the horrors of trafficking in and ownership of slaves, nor of the commodification of humans as chattel and property.    
All I am demanding is the use of common sense.  Once a human has been turned into property, then all of the incentives and economic behavior associated with all forms of property ownership kick in.  The simple fact of the matter is that once an African was enslaved, and no doubt some violence was involved in the capture of those slaves in Africa, then that African became property, an asset, something of pecuniary value, something worth preserving.  The owners of that property, and this includes the slave traders and shippers, had enormous motivation to preserve and protect the value of that property!  Ironically, this is what saved the lives of those slaves.  A live slave could be worth a fortune, while a dead slave was worth nothing.  While slave owners hardly had reason to treat their slaves with respect and dignity, neither did they have any reason to see their slaves maimed or killed.  Such injury and death represented a tremendous capital loss!  
Slave ship owners had as much motive to preserve intact their cargoes of human property as they would for any other cargo.  No ship owner would intentionally allow cargoes of gold, silver, whale oil, molasses, or tobacco to be damaged or harmed, and the same selfish property preservation motivation operated for slaves.  Once purchased in slave auctions, the slave represented a capital investment, one whose loss would impose financial losses on its owners. 
This is not to say that no slaves at all died during the transit from Africa to the Americas.  Cross-oceanic voyages were dangerous during the era of the slave trade, and deaths during those voyages were a clear and present danger for all, and not just the slaves.  Free persons immigrating to the Americans from Europe were also at risk during the voyages.  If anything, ship owners had more motivation to protect the bodies and health of the slave cargo than they did for simple ticket-holding passengers.
The life of a slave was one of misery and suffering.  But once in slavery in the Americas, the property value of the slave continued to protect him from death and serious injury.   In the books by Thomas Sowell, it is described how plantation owners and other owners of slaves would employ Irish day laborers to do the really dangerous tasks, preferring not to risk their “property” in the form of African slaves. 
From the perspective of the 21th century, none of this takes away any of our sense of horror at the sufferings of slaves during the era of the slave trade.   Some Africans were no doubt murdered in the process of capturing slaves, controlling slaves, and others died as a result of the hazards of oceanic shipment.  Medical knowledge and technology were of the most primitive form, and on-ship conditions were quite miserable.  Death was common for all aboard ships, and I have seen estimates that in some of the more famous exploration trips, over a third of the crews died of disease and starvation.
But genocide?  An African “Holocaust”?   There was no such thing.    
The fabricators of the fictional “African slave-trade Holocaust” may be driven by an urge to exaggerate the sufferings of the slave era in order to make a moral or political point.   A bit like the myriad forms of “advocacy statistics” that plague the modern world regarding so many other “causes” and issues.  But the truly malignant effect of the fabricators is to serve to trivialize the only real Holocaust.

Italy says 800,000 migrants poised to arrive

At least 800,000 migrants are about to depart the North African coast for Europe, while the reception system in Italy - the first landing point for the vast majority of these - is already on the brink of collapse from tens of thousands of earlier arrivals, official said Tuesday. "We no longer have a place to take them, and locals are overwhelmed by the constant arrival of foreigners," Giovanni Pinto, head of the Immigration and Border Police agency, told a joint meeting of the foreign and defence committees in the Italian Senate. As many as 25,000 migrants have landed on Italian shores to date this year, almost a ten-fold increase over the 2,500 reported during the same period in 2013 and nearing 2011's record levels of 62,000 migrants, Interior Minister Angelino Alfano said earlier this month. That has stretched already-strained resources in Italy, which only emerged from its deepest recession since the Second World War late last year, to the breaking point, particularly as it comes after record-breaking levels of migration in 2013. Italy is appealing for international help in the face of the waves of newcomers fleeing their homelands in numbers that tend to increase in spring and summer months as sea conditions improve. "Europe should know that Italy is a welcoming country, but we cannot accommodate everyone," Alfano said in an interview Tuesday with Rai television morning chat show 'Unomattina'. He added that 200 human traffickers believed to be responsible for smuggling thousands across the sea to Italy in dangerous conditions have been arrested. One day earlier, Premier Matteo Renzi vowed to request more assistance from the European Union and the United Nations on tackling undocumented immigration during a special meeting of his cabinet to consider emergency migrant issues. Part of the problem, said Pinto, is that many migrants who land in Italy are fleeing failed governments in Libya, civil war in Syria, and hostilities in other parts of the Middle East and North Africa. That means the Italian government has no corresponding authorities to turn to for help in returning the migrants. "We aren't dealing with a government that can establish treaties," said Pinto, refering to the case of Libya in particular. "We have no interlocutors...There's no prime minister...there are no ministers," he said. He also praised the efforts of the Mare Nostrum program, which was set up to prevent deaths at sea following two migrant ship disasters in October 2013 in which as many as 400 people died. "Surely the operation Mare Nostrum has given excellent results," said Pinto. In contrast, some opposition politicians complain that Mare Nostrum only encourages migrants to risk their lives and cross the Mediterranean, often in rickety, overcrowded boats. There are also concerns that it encourages human smuggling as well. Northern League Secretary Matteo Salvini said last week that Italy must suspend these operations because they are too expensive - about 300,000 euros daily, he said - and represent an "invasion" of Italian shores. Salvini, whose party has taken strong stances against immigration, called last month on allies across Europe to join the League in fighting "mass immigration" in the lead-up to May's European Parliament elections. In response to the rising levels of dangerous migration, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has said that Italy must have more financial help. The UNHCR has said that the Mediterranean is one of the busiest seas in the world, and urged European Union members to work together on solutions to the migrant situation, which is expected to worsen.

Will Spain Repudiate Anti-Semitism?

By Michael Curtis

In a little Spanish town a forthcoming election night will be like no other. The issue of anti-Semitism has rarely been a subject for mirth. But whatever its outcome, the bizarre election to be held on May 25, 2014 in Castrillo Matajudios, a small village in Spain, a territory of about 8 square miles, with 56 adult inhabitants is a cause for merriment. Some elections have changed the course of history. The referendum in the village near Burgos is not likely to be one of them but it may be an indication of changes in attitudes towards the virus of anti-Semitism.
The question on the ballot is whether or not to change the name of the village from its present name, which is translated as “Kill the Jews” to one that means “Hill or Mound of the Jews.” The issue has a long history. In 1035, the Jews living in the area were dispossessed of their belongings and were forced from their homes. They then settled on a mound in the area where their descendants lived until the royal edict in 1492 when all Jews were given the choice: convert to Catholicism or be expelled from Spain. Of the 700,000 Jews then living in the country most took the latter alternative and left, and remained as Sephardic Jews. Many of those who took the first option, converted or pretended to convert, were subjected to persecution by the Inquisition.
Spain was not the first, nor the only country, to expel its Jewish citizens. The British King Edward I, had expelled all Jews from England in 1290; they were allowed back by Oliver Cromwell in 1656. Portugal had quickly followed Spain by expelling its Jews in 1497. It took some time, exactly 476 years, for Spain to reconsider its hostile act against Jews. However, on December 16, 1968 an edict rescinded the expulsion order, and at present there are about 12,000 Jews living in the country. Spain went further on February 1, 2014 in its saga of recompense for past sins by offering to grant Spanish nationality to the descendants of those expelled in 1492. This was, the Spanish Minister of the Interior said, an attempt to rectify one of Spain’s “most important historical errors.”

It is unlikely that many descendants of Spain’s former 700,000 Jewish inhabitants will help rectify this historical error. They are more likely to be concerned about the attitudes in present-day Spain as elsewhere in Europe. The mayor of Castrillo, in favoring the renaming of his village, said that people think “this is a place where Jews were killed and that this is where they hate Jews. But the opposite is true. This is where Jews lived. We have nothing against anyone.”
If only this were true. The surveys about the extent of anti-Semitism in Spain, even if they differ on details, show otherwise. Survey reports in 2012 suggest that 53% of the Spanish population hold anti-Semitic beliefs. This was an increase from 48% in 2009. About 72% believe that Jews are more loyal to Israel than to their own country: this is the highest proportion of any European country surveyed. Some 60% believe that Jews have too much power in the business world, and 47% hold that Jews talk too much about the Holocaust.
Spain is far from being the worst European country in manifestations of anti-Semitism. In the dismal grading of evil forces the worst are Hungary, Poland, Sweden, and Belgium.The Kantor Center for the Study of Contemporary European Jewry cites increasing anti-Semitism in the countries it studied. About half of the Jewish population in Europe profess to be afraid of being verbally or physically attacked in a public place because they are Jewish. Because of fear of attack or abuse, about a third of Jews do not wear religious garb or Jewish symbols.
Visual and verbal anti-Semitism has been shown by insults, abusive language and behavior, threats and harassment, as well as vandalism, violent incidents, and terrorist attacks. Perhaps most troubling has been the emergence of extreme political parties that proclaim anti-Semitism as part of their appeal. The Kantor Center reports comments on the correlation between the growth of extreme right-wing parties and the high level of anti-Semitic manifestations. The most disturbing at the moment are Jobbik in Hungary, Svoboda in Ukraine, and Golden Dawn in Greece, which have uniformed militias and use salutes and symbols that resemble those of Nazi Germany, and make public use of anti-Semitic texts, especially the well-known forgery, the Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion.
Jobbik in April 2014 got 20% of the national election, and now is the third-largest party in the Hungarian National Assembly. One of its leaders, Marton Gyongyosi, made clear that “people of Jewish ancestry who live in Hungary pose a national security risk.” The party opposed a meeting in Budapest in May 2013 of the World Jewish Congress. Using confusing terminology that is in itself revealing, Jobbik denounced “The Israeli conquerors, these investors (who) should look for another country because Hungary is not for sale.”
Svobada, founded in 1991, has increased its public support. It won 10% of the vote and five seats in the 2012 parliamentary election, making it the fourth largest party.  Those members of parliament often inject anti-Semitic remarks into their speech. The party leader, Oleh Tyahnybok, though he claims he is not anti-Semitic, wants Ukraine to be liberated from “the Muscovite-Jewish Mafia,” and has called for the end of the “criminal activities of organized Jewry.” Its deputy leader founded a think tank that was originally called “The Joseph Goebbels Political Research Center.”
The Greek Golden Dawn party, founded in 1993, gained 7% of the vote and 21(later reduced to 18) parliamentary seats at the 2012 national election. Its leader, Nikolaos Michalolia, who gives the Nazi salute at meetings of the Athens City Council, proclaims, “We are the faithful soldiers of the National Socialist (Nazi) ideas and nothing else. We shout full of passion… Heil Hitler.” The party uses swastikas at its meetings, while its leader denies the existence of gas chambers and ovens at Nazi extermination camps.”
An encouraging sign is the decline in traditional Christian religious anti-Semitism. However, the perceived causes of anti-Semitism differ from one country to the next: it comes not only from the far right but also from extreme left-wing parties, from the Muslim communities in Europe, and also from unexpected sources.  One study, published in German in March 2014, which analyzes 14,000 letters and emails addressed to Jewish authorities in Berlin concludes that most of the anti-Semitic messages came not from the extreme right, but from educated people, including university professors and students and lawyers, who often view themselves as radicals. In addition to this disturbing news, the study found that the majority of the hate mail also contained criticisms of Israel.
Not surprisingly, the report of the European Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) in November 2013, that had collected data on perceptions of anti-Semitism in European countries, concluded that there were few signs that daily insults, discrimination, harassment, and even physical violence against Jews were abating. One interesting sign, whether it be regarded as sincere or “damage control,” came on April 27, 2014 from Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas who referred to the Holocaust as “the most heinous” modern crime and expressed sympathy with the victims and their families.  Can one anticipate another sign from the forthcoming vote in the Spanish village that may indicate that the existing serious challenges in the form of racism, discrimination, and anti-Semitism, are being met ?

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Suspect in Hedegaard shooting case may never stand trial in Denmark

The 26 -year-old Danish national arrested in Turkey on Friday on suspicion that he carried out the attempted assassination of anti-Islam author Lars Hedegaard may never answer the charges against him in a Danish courtroom. Denmark does not have a extradition treaty with Turkey, which would automatically compel the Turkish authorities to send the suspect to Denmark. A Turkish court would have to institute extradition proceedings – a process that could prove to be both lengthy and complicated. The man is charged with the 13 February 2013 attack on Hedegaard during which the author alleged that he was attacked by a Middle Eastern-looking man wearing a red jacket. Hedegaard said that the man shot at him one time, but fled on foot after a scuffle between the two men. The suspect, a Danish citizen with a Middle Eastern background, allegedly left Denmark on the same day as the assassination attempt. He was arrested near Istanbul carrying a fake passport. “The investigation into the incident led to Friday’s arrest,” Jorgen Skov, an inspector for the Copenhagen Police Department, said at a press conference on Friday. “He has appeared before a judge and is being held. We are talking to the Turkish authorities to find a way to have him returned to Denmark.” Hedegaard said that he does not have much hope that the suspect will be returned to Denmark. “I am sorry that he has been arrested and imprisoned in Turkey, because he can now hire a bunch of lawyers to avoid extradition,” Hedegaard told DR Nyheder. “It could take many years, and I don’t think much of the possibility.” The suspect’s motives remain unclear, and although they would not rule out the possibility of a conspiracy, they are currently working under the assumption that the man was working alone. Hedegaard is an historian, journalist and author well known for his anti-Islamic opinions.

Scorpions drummer jailed for insulting Islam in Dubai airport

A member of the heavy metal band Scorpions was yesterday sentenced to a month in jail for insulting Islam and lifting his middle finger at Muslims at an airport. James Kottak, 51, the American drummer for the German band whose hits include Rock You Like a Hurricane, said he drank five glasses of wine on a flight from Moscow to Dubai. He was in transit to Bahrain to perform at the country’s Formula One grand prix about 11pm on April 3. He said he and a friend had taken a wrong turn and enter-ed the transit hall. Kottak was arrested for being drunk and became angry, witnesses said. They said he started swearing and talking about “non-educated Muslims”, then flashed his middle finger at Pakistani passengers. Police said he also exposed his behind. Kottak, who pleaded not guilty to insulting Islam and raising his middle finger, was also fined Dh2,000 for drinking without a licence, to which he pleaded guilty. He has been held since April 3, and will be released soon because of the time served. Policeman A A said he heard Kottak say, “What is this disgusting smell?” before he insulted Islam. “I didn’t see anything else but I heard him. I then informed my supervisor, who came and took the defendant away,” A A said. S O, 27, a customer service employee at the airport, said: “When he saw the Pakistani and Afghan passengers, he covered his nose and said that there was no way he will travel with them.” He added that the drummer then started swearing repeatedly at the arrivals area of Terminal 2. “He wasn’t talking to a person specifically but was talking in general,” said S O. “He was very nervous at the time and talking loudly.” A B, 25, a Jordanian passenger services agent, said Kottak came over to her and was talking loudly. She said: “He was shouting ‘non-educated Muslims’ then he went to the office of the head and flashed his middle finger at the passengers.” Police said in records that when he lowered his trousers he was asking people to touch his behind. “I don’t remember saying these words and I did not flash my middle finger,” Kottak said to prosecutors. When asked about taking down his trousers, he said “this is not true – I just lifted my shirt up to show the tattoo on my back” as a “spontaneous act”. “There is no way that I would say such a phrase about Muslims, whether I was drunk or not,” he told police. “I confess to drinking alcohol but I refuse the other two charges, I did not do them.” At Dubai Court of Misdemeanours yesterday, his lawyer said his client was innocent and the witnesses must have been misunderstood. “Their testimonies are contradictory, your honour,” said Hamid Al Khazraji.

Another Day, Another Fake Islamophobic Hate Crime

By Daniel Greenfield

Kassim Alhimidi was just found guilty of murdering his wife and trying to pass it off as an anti-Muslim hate crime. But it didn’t take long for another fake anti-Muslim hate crime to make the news.
Police at Montclair State University have charged a student with filing a false report after an investigation determined that his claim that he was assaulted outside a residence hall was untrue, the school said Monday.
Navjoat Aulakh, 18, of Carteret allegedly said three white men assaulted him and called him an “Islamic terrorist” outside Whitman Hall Thursday night. An alert was issued to students and staff.
But in an email on Friday, Police Chief Paul Cell said an investigation determined Aulakh’s story was “fabricated.”
It’s possible that Navjoat Aulakh may not be Muslim, but he certainly exploited the myth of Islamophobia perpetrated by groups such as CAIR to disrupt the lives of other students.
Had anyone been arrested, he might have even ruined their lives.

British House of Lords baroness warns Israeli audience about threat of Islamists

Baroness Caroline Cox of Queensbury warned about the growing threat of political Islam in Britain and Africa at an event hosted by the Yuval Ne’eman Workshop for Science, Technology and Security at Tel Aviv University and The Israeli Institute for Strategic Studies on Monday. “Islam is using the freedoms of democracy to destroy it,” as some of its adherents try to “inhibit criticism,” said Cox, speaking at the Green House next to the university. In England, if you criticize Islam, you are called a racist, she said. In addition, she drew attention to what she called the effort to Islamize Africa through massive investments and other activities. She cited evidence and information gleaned from her stay in the region, pointing to the countries of Uganda, Nigeria and Sudan. Cox sits in the House of Lords – in which she had served as deputy speaker from 1985 to 2005 – and is the CEO of Humanitarian Aid Relief Trust (HART), which works to promote community development in various impoverished countries – mostly in Africa and Asia. Cox spoke of Islamist groups that have been implementing a strategic plan and making massive investments in the educational system in Britain in order to alter the institutions to serve their purposes. For example, she said, is a recent report that allegedly shows these groups are seeking to remove school headmasters so that they can be replaced with Islamists. British newspaper The Sunday Times reported a story in March about leaked papers revealing a plot by Islamists to target struggling schools in order to take them over and implement Islamic teachings. Another issue the British parliamentarian has been campaigning for, is for the rights of Muslim women. Under this context, Cox raised the issue of polygamy, an issue that could have ramifications for Israel, particularly among the Beduin. The practice is illegal in both countries. Unfortunately, she said, British leaders have sought to comply with sharia law despite the fact that it violates fundamental principles of the British legal system. Cox said she did not want to speak about Israel because she isn’t an expert on the country. In Britain, Cox proposed a bill that would work to make sure that any aspects of sharia law would comply with the country’s laws. There are over 80 sharia courts functioning in the country and they “pose a threat to the principles of democracy,” and in particular, discriminate against women, she said. Our hand should be extended “to moderate Muslims who seek to live peaceably, and redefine Islam in terms of peaceful coexistence and tolerance,”Cox said. In a BBC Panorama documentary last year, titled: Secrets of Britain’s Sharia Councils, Cox said that even though her bill had stalled she was going to continue striving for change. The BBC interviewed various women for the documentary and found that sharia councils discourage them from seeking help for domestic abuse from the authorities. “It is time to draw a line in the sand and say enough is enough,” she said regarding the incompatibility of sharia law, gender equality and “one rule for all.”

What in Hell’s Rec Room is Going On Here?


The LibLabCon Cartel is frightened and will stoop to any depths to smear UKIP supporters – UKIP Leader Nigel Farage responds to Guardian report of concerted Establishment bid to brand UKIP ‘racist’

Nigel  Farage today condemned the three main Westminster parties for resorting to a "campaign of slurs" against UKIP supporters in a desperate bid to protect their establishment cartel and prevent his party winning the European elections next month.
The UKIP leader spoke out after a front page Guardian report revealed the launch of a cross-party campaign to brand UKIP as racist.
Former Labour immigration minister Barbara Roche is leading an anti-UKIP campaign by the Migration Matters Trust, which also has Tory and Lib Dem support, and has accused UKIP of "Euracism".
Mr Farage said: "I am really sorry that millions of people who have decided to vote UKIP next month now find themselves accused by the political establishment of supporting racism.
"This is like the incident between Gordon Brown and Gillian Duffy at the last general election writ large – this time it is not merely one person being slandered by one establishment party but huge numbers of decent British people under attack and all three Westminster parties levelling the charge of racism and bigotry.

"Now we can see why none of the establishment parties will ever get immigration under control – they simply don't believe in doing so.
"So they are trying to browbeat the British public into abandoning UKIP and sticking with open-door immigration by using the most disgraceful slurs. This is the classic tactic of any cartel whose position is threatened by a new competitor in the market place.
"When UKIP was perceived mainly as a threat to the Conservative Party, it was David Cameron and his colleagues who used this tactic. Now we are recognised as a threat to the entire establishment it is all three parties that are slinging mud.
"I think the British public will take this extremely badly. I believe they want and appreciate the new choices being offered to them by UKIP on issues like immigration control and will certainly not appreciate being branded racist for doing so.
"The electorate is not in the mood to be intimidated by the political establishment and Messrs Cameron, Miliband and Clegg have just made another disastrous mistake. I call on all fair-minded British people to swing behind UKIP and teach these creeps a lesson they won't forget in a hurry."

Turkish PM: German president is just a pastor

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday rejected criticism from Germany's president who said he was "scared" by the Turkey's recent spate of rights abuses. "I think he still thinks of himself as pastor," Erdogan told parliament, a day after he met with German President Joachim Gauck who is on a four-day visit to Turkey. Gauck, an outspoken former Lutheran pastor, gave a harsh indictment of recent actions by the Turkish government during speeches in Ankara on Monday - particularly efforts to ban Twitter and YouTube and increase control over the judiciary in response to protests and a corruption scandal. "I must confess that these developments are scaring me," Gauck said in a speech at the Middle East Technical University. He added that the rule of law was in danger from efforts to muzzle the opposition. "I ask myself if judicial independence is still guaranteed if the government purges so many prosecutors and police, and prevents them from shedding light on crooked developments... or manipulates decisions in its favour," Gauck said during his four-day visit to the country. But Erdogan said Gauck's approach "upset" him. "We have no hesitation, or fear. We can never tolerate interference in our domestic affairs," he told parliament.

The New NATO Sec.General is a Promoter of Hamas

Stollenberg is a poor choice as NATO sec.general for many reasons, the leading one being his support for Hamas.

By Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld

As time passes, it becomes increasingly clear how absurd the choice of former Norwegian Labor Party Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg as NATO’s next Secretary General is. The new Hamas-Fatah agreement brings to mind the many ways Stoltenberg, his government and Labor have directly and indirectly promoted Hamas’ interests.

Hamas calls for the murder of Jews in its party platform.[1] In January 2006, it won a majority in the only Palestinian general elections. The European Union and the U.S. classify Hamas as a terrorist group.[2] Both ended contacts with Palestinian officials after Hamas formed a new Palestinian government led by Ismael Haniyeh in March 2006. The United States and the E.U. then also cut off aid to the Palestinians.[3]

In April 2006, two Hamas representatives, parliamentarian and spokesperson for the Hamas bloc in the Parliament, Salah Mohammed El-Bardawil and Mohammed El-Rantisi, were invited to visit by the Norwegian Palestine Committee. They claimed that it was “important” to invite representatives from the new Palestinian government.[4] El-Rantisi was given a Schengen visa by Norway, allowing him entry into any of the 15 member countries, while El-Bardawil received a national visa as his previous Schengen application was denied by France.[5] [6]

The entry permits were given only a few weeks after a major suicide bombing took place outside a fast food restaurant ‘The Mayor’s Falafel’ in Tel Aviv, which claimed nine lives and left more than 70 wounded.[7] The Islamic Jihad movement claimed responsibility. Hamas called the attack a legitimate response to “Israeli aggression.” Even though El-Bardawil said that he did not condemn the suicide bombing, Foreign Minister Støre - also from Labor - welcomed the Hamas representatives to Norway.[8] [9]

In the following months, Hamas representatives parliamentarian Yahya al-Abadsa and Refugee Minister Atef Adwan were invited by the same organization. Al-Abadsa met with Amnesty International Norway and the Labor party head of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs Olav Akselsen, during his week-long visit.[10] Adwan attended a meeting with head of the Middle East section of the Foreign Ministry, Kåre Eltervåg.[11] He also met with parliamentarians from both the Labor and Socialist Left parties.
Stoltenberg was not only Prime Minister but also head of the Labor Party, which he is until now.

Norway was the first Western government to recognize the short-lived 2007 Hamas-Fatah unity government, again led by Haniyeh.[12] Norwegian Deputy Foreign Minister Raymond Johansen became the first senior European official to hold talks with him in March 2007. Several media displayed a picture of the two shaking hands.[13] After meeting Haniye, Johansen said "We hope that all the European countries and even other countries will support this unity government.”[14] [15] Israel thereupon cancelled all planned meetings between Johansen and Israeli officials.

During Israel’s Cast Lead Operation in 2008, two Norwegian physicians and extreme left activists Mads Gilbert and Erik Fosse, went to Gaza and assisted in the treatment of wounded Gazans. They traveled to Gaza as part of the humanitarian organization NORWAC, which is supported financially to a great extent by Norway’s Foreign Ministry.[16] Gilbert and Fosse were frequently interviewed by the international media and claimed that Israel was attacking civilians and compared it to the God of the Dead and the Underworld, Hades from Greek mythology.[17]

The Gazan hospital where they worked was used as Hamas headquarters. However, the Norwegian physicians did not mention this once in their multiple international press interviews. In their book Eyes in Gaza, these two Hamas propagandists tell how Stoltenberg called the physicians when they were in Gaza and expressed support on behalf of the government and the Norwegian people. “We are very proud of you,” said Stoltenberg.[18]

In 2011, the Norwegian government claimed on its official website that it had assisted in bringing Fatah and Hamas together in their short-lived unity government in 2007. Støre had then approached Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal at the request of Mohammed Abbas to convey expectations of the international community that the two parties join in a unity government. The Norwegian government also asserted that it never recognized Hamas and did not establish political contact with it.

Benson K. Whitney, then-American Ambassador in Norway, saw it differently. In a note from 2009 which he had written to the State Department, he said that, “Even though they would deny it, there are clear signs that the contact with Hamas is not just a tactical need for dialogue, but that they also support Hamas’s position on some level.”[19]

I have already documented elsewhere many other reasons why Stoltenberg is such a poor choice as Nato Secretary General.[20] As time passes, additional arguments supporting this will most likely come to the surface.
[1] “The Covenant of the Islamic Resistance Movement,” Yale Law School. [retrieved 29 June 2013]
[2] “Hamas Wants off US, EU Terror lists,” CBNNews 12 March 2013
[3] “EU, US set to end boycott of Palestinians,” BBC, 20 March 2007.
[4] Ole Berthelsen and Ole Peder Giæver, ”Støre ønsker Hamas velkommen,” Nettavisen, 18 April 2006.
[5] Abigail Klein Leichman,“Oslo Grants Visa to Hamas Lawmaker,” Jerusalem Post, 16 May 2006.
[6] Sissel Henriksen, ”Slakter Sveriges,” Klassekampen, 19 May 2006.
[7] “Suicide bomber kills nine in Tel Aviv,” NBC News, 17 April, 2006.
[8] Ashraf al-Khadra and Ole Peder Giæver, ”Fordømmer ikke selvmords-angrepet,” Nettavisen, 18 April 2006.
[9] Ole Berthelsen and Ole Peder Giæver, ”Støre ønsker Hamas velkommen.”
[10] Ole Peder Giæver,”Hamas-parlamentarikeren Yahya Al-Abadsa, som denne uken er på besøk i Norge, tror ikke det brygger til borgerkrig i de palestinske områdene,” Nettavisen, 13 June 2006.
[11] ”UD-representanter møtte Hamas-minister,” Aftenposten, 13 May 2006.
[12] Harald S. Klungtveit and Morten Øverbye, ”Israel avlyser alle avtaler med norsk statssekretær,” Dagbladet, 20 March 2007.
[13] “Norwegian minister meets Hamas PM,” BBC News, 19 March 2007.
[14] Ibid.
[15]  Norway-Hamas Link Angers Israel,” BBC News, 20 March 2007.
[16] Erik Abild, “NORWAC i Palestina,” Norwegian Aid Committee, 19 December 2010. 
[17] Gjermund Glesnes, “Sammenligner Gaza med dødsriket Hades,” Verdens Gang, 4 January 2009.
[18] Erlend Skevik, ”Regjeringen støttet Gaza-legene,” Verdens Gang, 18 September.2009.
[19]  Pål T. Jørgensen and Espen Eide, ”Støre har hatt hemmelige samtaler med Hamas.” 27 January 2011.
[20] Manfred Gerstenfeld, ”NATO’s new secretary-general: Problematic not only for Israel,” Jerusalem Post, 6 April 2014.

Anti-Semitism at Islamic Conference: a Wakeup Call for Europe?

By Tom Wilson

What would it take for the Europeans to face up to the ever more belligerent degrees of anti-Semitism coming from parts of that continent’s Muslim population? Disturbing reports have emerged about certain anti-Jewish comments made by speakers at one of Europe’s most important Islamic conferences. Writing in Le Figaro Michele Tribalat recounted some of the statements made at the congress of the Union of Islamic Organizations in France, which convened in Paris on Wednesday. The most disturbing statements came from “guest of honor” Hani Ramadan, a prominent Muslim leader in Geneva and the brother of Tariq Ramadan.
Before the delegates Ramadan insisted in his speech that, “All the evil in the world originates from the Jews and the Zionist barbarism.” In his speech Ramadan listed places of conflict across the world and claimed that these wars are being driven by the “hand” of Zionism. Similarly, the audience was informed that Jews control the media and that in America and France no one can be elected to the presidency without first pandering to Jewish organizations. Ramadan was good enough to concede, however, that Europe’s “financial lobbies that practice usury…no longer rely only on Jews.”
The fact that these statements could come from such an apparently prominent speaker at such an important Islamic conference surely says something about currents in the wider Muslim community. With such sentiments being bandied around from the podiums of high-profile Islamic conferences, is it any wonder that across Europe there has been such a rise in Muslim hate crime against Jews? In America, liberal Jews have often refused to a hear a word of it. They look at you with wary suspicion if you dare to suggest that Muslims have played a significant part in the upward trend of European anti-Semitism. Even after the harrowing 2012 shootings at a Jewish school in Toulouse and the uncovering of a number of similar anti-Jewish terror plots, many liberals in America seemed to assume that there must be some anti-Muslim prejudice at work on the part of anyone who tried to highlight this phenomenon.
Then last fall the European Union released its own comprehensive survey of anti-Semitism and the figures spoke for themselves. In France, 73 percent of those who reported having experienced anti-Semitism said that it came from what the survey termed “someone with a Muslim extremist view.” Just 22 percent said they had witnessed anti-Semitism from a “Christian extremist” and 27 percent said they had seen it coming from someone with a “right-wing political view.” For what its worth, 67 percent of those surveyed in France said they had heard anti-Semitism coming from someone on the left.
Such trends should hardly be surprising. In recent years Britain has had to deal with the phenomenon of anti-Jewish and hardline Saudi textbooks being used in Muslim education programs for young children. This culture of anti-Jewish education then seems to continue all the way up to the universities, with Muslim student associations still hosting radical preachers who express views no different from those voiced by Ramadan at Wednesday’s conference. Is it any wonder, then, if some members of the Islamic community are ready to believe the most hallucinatory and outlandish conspiracy theories about Jews? And as Ramadan was sure to explain to his audience, “Against these international schemes of Zionist power, there is only one rampart: Islam.”
Given the scale of mass immigration into Europe, the process of acculturation was never going to be immediate or even entirely smooth. Yet, it often appears as if European governments have done less than nothing to westernize immigrant communities, in many instances having even encouraged a certain separateness, just as the doctrines of multiculturalism stipulate. After the horrors of World War Two Europe embraced a kind of post-national cosmopolitan tolerance that forbade calling out bigotry when it emanated from ethnic minorities. As Ed West has written, “the irony is that, out of collective guilt for what happened to Europe’s Jews, Europe imported millions of people from some of the world’s most anti-Semitic countries, [and] made no attempt to counter these prejudices.”
No doubt Ramadan’s comments will make some headlines and provoke some mutters of condemnation and concern, just as the European Union’s recent anti-Semitism survey did. But how many more Toulouse-style terror attacks will Europe go through before it is ready to contemplate getting serious? Perhaps it is incapable of ever doing so.

Monday, April 28, 2014

US, UK Warn Against Using Internet Explorer Until Bug Fixed

Microsoft warned Windows users operating Internet Explorer (IE) versions 6 through 11 to switch browsers on Monday, after US and UK authorities warned that a major bug in the system could breach their users' cyber-security.
The bug is the first of its kind to emerge after Microsoft announced that it would stop providing updates and technical support for Windows XP, the popular operating system which turned thirteen earlier this year.
The Department of Homeland Security's U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team and the UK's National Computer Emergency Response Team warned IE users in both countries to avoid the browser until further notice, saying the bug could lead to a "complete compromise" in their internet security.
Versions 6 to 11 of Internet Explorer dominate desktop browsing, according to Reuters, accounting for 55 percent of global market share.
To compound the problem, 15-25% of Windows users worldwide are estimated to still be using Windows XP - which can cause more problems down the road now that tech support has been taken out of commission.
IE users reluctant to switch may still be able to enact safeguards - at least, for now. Tech site FireEye noted Monday that one possible solution, for Windows users operating IE10 or later, is to enable Enhanced Protection Mode (EPM). The video below explains how to enable the safeguard.
Another option, according to Mashable, is to disable Flash. The move would disable watching videos and playing online games, but renders the bug powerless.
Microsoft is expected to release a patch for the bug as soon as possible, before the company's May 13 "Patch Tuesday" event.

Muslim Medical Association Urges Doctors to Amputate the Hands of Thieves

By Daniel Greenfield

Before all do no harm is not exactly a major Muslim medical principle. Before all follow Sharia law is. And that’s a problem in Malaysia, which Obama compared to the US, but which is going down the dark road of Islamic law.
The Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) has disrespected Muslims and Muslim doctors by threatening to axe doctors who perform amputations under hudud, according to Muslim medical practitioners’ group i-Medik.
Muslim doctors have sworn to an Islamic doctor’s oath which also binds them to Islam as a way of life and the implementation of Islamic laws including hudud, it added.
“A Muslim doctor performs his task according to the Islamic medical doctor’s oath, which fully supports Islam as a way of life, and this includes fully supporting Shariah laws,” i-Medik chairman Prof Dr Azmi Md Nor said.
So two medical associations. One professional and one Islamic. The Islamic one would like doctors to mutilate people. Because Islam is what it is.
iMedik, the hand chopping one, appears to be linked to Malaysian Muslim Solidarity whose president just claimed that women’s rights is a Jewish conspiracy.
Also he’s a fan of human rights…
Earlier Zaik said equality, liberty and human rights are “godless” and “faithless” ideologies created by atheists to destroy Islam.
Because giving people human rights would destroy a slave religion based on terror and oppression.
And to back that up, he wants Sharia police. Because someone has to fight, what he called, “the agenda of liberalism, religious pluralism, total equality and Christianisation were brought to this country through various approaches through proxies and certain networks linked to international Jews, Freemasons and evangelist Christians.”
With all that in mind, you can accept that the Islamic mutilations will be carried out humanely.
A group representing Muslim physicians has defied the Health Ministry and Malaysian Medical Association on the hudud issue, saying that its members will amputate limbs “in the most humane manner possible”.
Pertubuhan Ikram Malaysia president Dr Mohammed Fauzi Abdul Rani said syariah law mandates Muslim physicians to perform the surgical procedure as instructed by syariah courts and as such, Muslim physicians must abide by it.
Fauzi said Muslim physicians are subservient to the higher ideals of syariah law to protect the general public.
On the Hippocratic Oath where physicians are expected to “do no harm” (primum non nocere), he said Muslim doctors are not doing any harm to a criminal who has transgressed the boundaries of social justice and has to undergo a punishment prescribed by Islamic law.
Islam has its definition of harm. Also humanity, brotherhood, truth and common decency. And those definitions don’t align with those of the rest of the world.
“These crimes (theft, fornication, adultery, alcohol consumption and apostasy) which threaten the social and moral order are seen as transgressing the limits set by Allah and thus have punishments mandated in the Quran.”
Drinking alcohol is really wicked. However Mohammed raping a little girl was something Allah had no problem with.
But the bad doctor expresses a basic problem with Islamic professionals who put Islam above their professional duties. That is why the Muslim world remains a dangerous and backward place.
Possessing technical skills is not the same thing as civilization. Literacy, technology can still be possessed by barbarians. It’s the mindset that makes for civilization.
As an example of that, here’s a letter from a Muslim doctor in defense of Islamic mutilations.
The ethics and the law are manmade, whereas the Islamic ruling is from Allah. As a Muslim doctor, I am a Muslim first. At the moment, the fact that syaria’ law has not been fully implemented has made it compulsory on me to make it happen…
Technically, the amputation of thief’s hand should be conducted in a way not to harm his or her life. Threat to his or her life could be due to blood loss, infection and other comorbidities. Excessive blood loss can be prevented by identifying two main arteries supplying blood to the hands. Infection should be prevented by safeguarding hygiene prior, during and after the procedure. Comorbidities should be addressed by having a thorough medical check-up and optimization prior to the event. Also, the technique of the amputation should guarantee safe healing of the stump and retained integrity of remaining bones.
This is what we’re dealing with. Savages with degrees. It’s what we’re dealing with at every single level of the conflict.

Amy Winehouse's family attacks ex-husband over graveside interview

Troubled couple: Amy Winehouse and Blake Fielder-Civil (Photo: AP)
Troubled couple: Amy Winehouse and Blake Fielder-Civil (Photo: AP)

By Rosa Doherty

Amy Winehouse’s mother has criticised the late singer's ex husband for disrespecting the Jewish faith after he was filmed giving an interview at her grave.
Janis Winehouse said Blake Fielder-Civil's action, alongside his failure to wear a kippah at the Jewish cemetery, had disgusted her.
She said: “To film beside a grave shows total disrespect. I want nothing to do with this.
“He is entitled to visit the grave, he disrespects our religion by not covering his head, and as for an interview in a sacred place that disgusts me.
“He is entitled to grieve but please, not in public three years too late.”
Mr Fielder-Civil posed crouching at the side of Ms Winehouse's grave, which she shares with grandmother Cynthia Levy, at Edgwarebury Lane Cemetery in Edgware, n orth London.
The singer's father, Mitch Winehouse, was also shocked by the incident.
The former cabby wrote on his Twitter page: “Blake gave interview at Amy's grave? Please tell me it's not true. Mitch.”
In a interview filmed for YouTube Mr Fielder-Civil expressed his remorse over the star's death at the age of 27.
He said: “I feel responsible for her death. There’s lots of reasons why it’s taken me so long to visit. I was scared to come.
“Maybe she would not have done as many drugs over the years if she had not met me.”
The Back to Black singer died of alcohol poisoning in July 2011.

Group Calls for U.S. Secretary of State Kerry to Resign Over Israel Comments

By Joshua Levitt

The Emergency Committee for Israel on Monday called on U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry to resign after describing Israel, in the absence of a two-state peace agreement with the Palestinian Authority, as having scope to become an “apartheid state,” a term specifically condemned by U.S. President Barack Obama when running for office in 2008.
On Friday, Kerry told a closed-door meeting of the Trilateral Commission with European and Asian leaders that, “A two-state solution will be clearly underscored as the only real alternative,” according to a recording obtained by The Daily Beast. “Because a unitary state winds up either being an apartheid state with second-class citizens—or it ends up being a state that destroys the capacity of Israel to be a Jewish state,” Kerry said.
The Emergency Committee for Israel said, “It is time for John Kerry to step down as Secretary of State, or for President Obama to fire him. And it would go a long way toward repairing the damage Kerry has done if his predecessor as Secretary of State, who is the likely Democratic Party nominee for president, explained why this kind of rhetoric had no place in her State Department and why it will have no place in her presidential campaign.”
“Secretary Kerry’s musings on the Jewish state’s dire future have become a regular feature of his public remarks,” the group said. “His latest prediction follows other statements in recent months that have in effect threatened Israel — never the Palestinians — with a list of disasters should his diplomatic efforts fail: violence, isolation, delegitimization, boycotts — and now ‘apartheid.’”
Jewish human rights group the Anti-Defamation League on Monday described Kerry’s statement as “startling and deeply disappointing.”
“It is startling and deeply disappointing that a diplomat so knowledgeable and experienced about democratic Israel chose to use such an inaccurate and incendiary term,” ADL National Director Abraham Foxman said, in a statement.
“We appreciate Mr. Kerry’s deep concern for Israel and his desires to ensure that it have a future of peace and security. Even if he used the repugnant language of Israel’s adversaries and accusers to express concern for Israel’s future, it was undiplomatic, unwise and unfair. Such references are not seen as expressions of friendship and support.”

Well done, EU...: The Euro-crisis has resulted in a debt that now exceeds 8.900. euros

The EU has only brought kaos and debt and has destroyed our democracies and national borders that some many of our forefathers fought and died bravely for. Already for years it has been clear that the EU's way of handling its self-created crisis does not aim at solving the problems, but to gain even more power. This is good for the German party, Alternative für Deutschland.

"According to the overwhelming majority of Germans the euro crisis continues. Citizens
worry mainly about the development in Greece. This will have an impact on the EU elections, according to a survey. ...

80 percent of Germans are convinced that the euro crisis is not yet over. Only seven percent think the crisis ended. ...

The European statistical office Eurostat published on Wednesday figures on deficits and debt in Europe. This figures only concerns information on developments within the countries in the Euro-zone that has an ecomic crisis (which means that there is a lot more debt that is not included in this calculation, Nicolai). Thus, the sovereign debt are in the euro zone at 8.9 trillion euros."

British Bank Doesn’t Charge Overdraft Fees on Muslim Bank Accounts

By Daniel Greenfield

Muslim privilege. It’s everywhere you don’t want to be.
Lloyds Bank has been accused of religious discrimination after offering free overdraft accounts to Muslims.
While many will have to pay up to £80 a month if they go into the red, Muslims were told they would escape the charges. The document said: “We are removing the monthly overdraft management fee of £6 from our Islamic Account, Islamic Student Account and Islamic Graduate Account. So, if you use an unplanned overdraft on these accounts, there won’t be any charges.”
Barclays, Co-op Bank and RBS said they do not offer alternative bank accounts to Muslim customers.
A Lloyds spokesman said Islamic accounts were intended for customers who cannot receive or pay interest under sharia, but were available to anyone, regardless of their faith.
That must be why they called them Islamic Accounts, instead of Interest Free Accounts.
One customer, Anita Milton, a nurse of New Eltham, south London, said: “I can’t believe that they’re thinking of offering one account for Muslims and making everyone else pay for the same service. Do I have to change my religion to get the best deal?”
At Lloyds maybe.

BDS Movement Echoes Germany in the 1930s

By Tammi Rossman-Benjamin

In the 1930s, thousands of Jewish professors were kicked out of German universities because they were Jews. Shamefully, today in the U.S., Jewish professors are threatened with being thrown out of scholarly conferences, prevented from publishing in scholarly journals, and denied research or employment opportunities, simply because they are citizens of the Jewish State.
In the U.S., more than 1,000 scholars on more than 300 college and university campuses across the country have endorsed an academic boycott of Israel.
Make no mistake about it, the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaign is pure anti-Semitism masquerading in the cloak of academic legitimacy. It was established in response to a call by Palestinian organizations, including terrorist organizations Hamas and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, to facilitate the elimination of Israel. Omar Barghouti, founder of the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel, has publicly described his desire to “euthanize” the “Zionist project.”
Even though the American Studies Association’s recent adoption of a resolution boycotting Israeli universities and scholars has been subjected to scathing criticism by several prominent academic associations – including more than 250 university presidents, hundreds of state and Federal legislators, and virtually every mainstream Jewish organization – too many professors continue to promote the boycott of Israeli professors, advance lies and distortions about Israel, and advocate the elimination of the Jewish state.
Faculty members’ unbridled use of the university for promoting the boycott of Israel has had dangerous consequences.
Corruption of the academic mission of the university: The political nature of the campaign to promote a boycott of Israel damages the educational endeavor that is at the heart of a university. When the focus of a professor or department is political advocacy, the quality of teaching and research is severely compromised. One-sided partisan teaching limits the access of students to vital information and violates their fundamental right to be educated, not indoctrinated.
Creation of a hostile environment for Jewish students: Professors who use their official positions and resources to promote campaigns to harm or dismantle Israel and who encourage students to do the same, contribute to the creation of a hostile and threatening environment for many Jewish students, who report feeling emotionally and intellectually harassed and intimidated by their professors and isolated from their fellow students.
Since no other racial, ethnic, or religious group has been subjected by faculty to such pervasive harassment and intimidation, Jewish students experience this flagrant double standard as a kind of institutional discrimination that is anti-Semitic in effect if not in intent. Unfortunately, Jewish students who feel emotionally or intellectually threatened as a result of their professor’s anti-Israel advocacy are often afraid to come forward and confront the professor or to complain to an administrator, because they are concerned about potential retaliation.
Giving academic legitimacy to global campaigns to harm Israel: American colleges have become a critical front in the war being waged against the Jewish state. The language and imagery used to demonize Israel and portray it as worthy of destruction, as well as the BDS campaigns intended to be the first steps towards that end, are the main weapons of this war. They have caused significant harm to Israel’s reputation. Moreover, when anti-Semitic tropes and campaigns are promoted by faculty, a cloak of academic legitimacy attaches to them, considerably enhancing their ability to flourish on campus and contributing to the growth of global anti-Semitism.
What can be done?
The problem is a serious one and worsens with each campus-based boycott effort that goes unchallenged. Pressure must be brought from outside of the university.
Public Pressure: Information about faculty members who endorse BDS should be published and circulated widely. Then, students, prospective students, alumni, parents, donors, and taxpayers should express outrage at the university’s collusion with an anti-Semitic campaign.  Potential loss of student or donor revenue and the erosion of goodwill of the taxpaying public will send a compelling message to university administrators.
Legal Pressure: When the behavior violates state or Federal law, legal action may prove effective.
Legislative Pressure: Virtually all universities are beholden to state and Federal legislators for funding. To date, legislation that would withhold public monies from universities that engage in anti-Israel boycotts has been proposed in five states, as well as in the U.S. Congress.  Such legislation could go a long way towards curbing the behavior of academic boycotters.
Boycotts of Israeli universities and scholars are the newest expressions of anti-Semitism. On this year’s Holocaust Remembrance Day, we must commit to fight locally, on each and every campus where the anti-Semitic boycott of the Jewish State rears its ugly head.