'Israel Is the Most Humane Country in the Middle East': Why Syria's Southern Neighbors Are Working on Their PR
All of this has done remarkable things for Israeli-Syrian relations in rebel-held stretches of southern Syria. According to one Syrian opposition commander speaking in Amman: "Israel is the most humane country in the Middle East."
And that, said Elizabeth Tsurkov, a Syria researcher at Israel's Forum for Regional Thinking, is exactly the result Israel is looking for.
"This is a humane but also a very smart policy for Israel — its gets positive PR for treating Syrians, goodwill among civilians on the other side of the border fence, and intelligence about possible threats from southern Syria," she told VICE News.
In the past, Israel could rely on Syria's Baath regime to keep the border quiet. But with much of Quneitra now out of the government's control, Israel is increasingly looking to Golan residents to do the job. And it is no secret, said Tsurkov, that medical treatment of rebels in Israel is conditioned on them not attacking Israel and keeping Islamic State (IS or ISIS) militants at bay.
"While the treatment of injured Syrians in Israeli hospitals is a humanitarian effort, the impetus behind it is absolutely not humanitarian and Syrians are well-aware of this," she said.
Andrew Tabler, a senior fellow at the Washington Institute, said this pragmatic approach offers southern Syria's neighbors the chance to understand and build trust with whatever new political reality is forming there.
"This is part of a general strategy, which Jordan shares, of keeping ISIS out of southern Syria through the use of soft as well as hard power," he told VICE News. (h/t Alexi)
Europe's NGO Jihad Against Israel
Beneath a vexing tangle of funding operations -- most hiding under a pretense of "good works," "humanitarian aid," and "public interest" -- there is at work a sophisticated, multi-faceted, well-oiled propaganda machine against Israel.
A chief concern in the Knesset is how to curb the influx of millions of foreign dollars used to fund anti-Israel hate-groups operating as NGOs. These organizations are accused of using their "human rights" designation to mask a deceptive advocacy agenda to undermine, and even to destroy, Israel.
When Israel works to build "bridges for peace," such as SodaStream, where Arabs and Jews worked peacefully together, these organizations then knock them down.
Apparently, no one at World Vision asks the obvious question: Why are there even refugee camps in territories controlled by the Palestinian Authority (PA) and Hamas, such as Gaza, Jenin and Ramallah? Not only have those areas been under exclusive PA or Hamas civilian administration since 1994, but Israel totally evacuated the Gaza Strip in 2005.
Praise for Carter Ignores Ex-President's Anti-Israel Obsession
Falsifying the Camp David record
In 2006, Carter published Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid. It was laden with at least 38 errors, as CAMERA documented in our monograph Bearing False Witness: Jimmy Carter's Palestine, Peace Not Apartheid (2007). The work was widely debunked by Middle East experts, various news outlets, former President Bill Clinton and even some of Carter's long-time associates at the Carter Center.
Falsifying Jewish history and Israeli rights
In Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid, the one-time Georgia governor went so far as to omit the historic existence of the Jewish people in the land of Israel. As noted civil rights attorney and Harvard University Law School professor emeritus Alan Dershowitz pointed out, Carter wrote that Christian and Muslim Arabs have lived in what became modern-day Israel, yet he “leaves out the fact that Jews have lived in Jerusalem (where they were a majority since the first modern census), Hebron, Tzfat, and other cities far longer—continuously, in many cases.” (The Case Against Israel's Enemies)
Echoing Terrorist Claims
In keeping with his habit of both trying to cast Israel as an expansionist nation and simultaneously acting as an interlocutor for the Jewish state's opponents, Carter claimed that Israel did not withdraw completely from Lebanon in the spring of 2000. In fact, Israel's withdrawal was certified by the United Nations, which noted on June 16, 2000 that “Israeli forces have withdrawn from Lebanon.” Carter—echoing the Iranian-backed, Lebanese Hezbollah, a U.S.-designated terrorist organization—misrepresented Israeli counter-terrorism action on the border with Lebanon as proof the Jewish state had not withdrawn completely.
Carter also took at face value claims made by PLO leader Arafat. The former president repeated Arafat's lie that “the PLO has never advocated the annihilation of Israel. The Zionists started the ‘drive the Jews into the sea' slogan and attributed it to the PLO.”
Uncle Sam (Obama) Bails out Palestinian Authority
In backing the PA through a Statement of Interest filed with the court, the State Department may have helped delay the day of reckoning for the PA. The U.S. government claimed that the economic demise of the PA was of critical concern to the U.S., and thus felt compelled to interfere in our case, on the side of people found guilty of providing material support for terror against American citizens.
In the eleven years since we first filed Sokolow vs. PLO, we never heard from the U.S. government.
The U.S. government made no effort to contact us or to help us in preparing for trial.
And when we won a stunning victory on 23 February of this year, when the PA and PLO were found guilty on 24 counts and made to pay $655.5 million, not a word came out of Washington.
While Israeli politicians across the political spectrum praised holding the PA legally responsible for its terror activity, not a word came from the White House, the State Department or the Department of Justice. This was the first inkling that the US would not stay on the sidelines for long but was prepared to come into our case—on the side of the murderers.
While the US may claim that it has a stake in the well-being of the PA, it should also realize that it has a stake in the legal rights of its citizens and in the law that is designed to prevent terrorists from harming American citizens anywhere in the world.
EU envoy warns of new sanctions against settlements
The European Union’s outgoing envoy to the Palestinian territories says the 28-nation bloc is moving forward with measures against Jewish West Bank settlements.
The envoy, John Gatt-Rutter, did not provide a time frame. But his remarks to reporters Thursday underline European discontent with Israel’s continued expansion of settlements in territory that Palestinians want for a future state.
“There is support within the union to go on,” Gatt-Rutter said, adding that there are “more tools” the EU can use.
The EU, Israel’s biggest trading partner, is exploring guidelines that would require Israel to label settlement products. It already bars goods produced in settlements from receiving customs exemptions given to Israeli goods.
Gatt-Rutter’s remarks come as a grassroots movement promoting boycotts, divestment and sanctions against Israel is gaining steam and as the Palestinian Authority urged the EU to block the entry of Israelis living beyond the Green Line into Europe’s 26 Schengen Area countries.
PA Congress to Meet for First Time Since 1996
Palestinian Authority (PA) leaders have set September 15-16 as the dates for their first congress in nearly 20 years after Chairman Mahmoud Abbas announced his resignation as head of a top executive body.
The meeting of the Palestine National Council (PNC), a congress representing those in the PA and abroad, is to be held in Ramallah.
"It has been decided to ask the Palestine National Council to convene for a session on the upcoming 15th and 16th September in Ramallah,"senior Palestinian official Azzam al-Ahmad told AFP.
"The council's agenda includes electing a new executive committee for the (Palestine Liberation Organisation)."
Ahmad said the congress would also discuss the stalemate in peace talks with Israel, among other issues.
Abbas's allies say his recent moves are part of efforts to inject new blood in the Palestinian leadership.
Critics, however, argue that Abbas is maneuvering to empower his allies and marginalize opponents ahead of the 80-year-old's eventual retirement.
No BBC coverage of Abbas’ PLO resignation
Even for an organization which serially avoids serious coverage of internal Palestinian affairs, the BBC’s failure to report on a recent story coming out of Ramallah is remarkable – especially as it is obviously aware of events.
As readers are no doubt aware, eighty year-old Mahmoud Abbas presides over three bodies: he is president of the Fatah party, president of the Palestinian Authority (although his elected mandate expired long ago) and chair of the executive committee of the PLO. According to reports disputed by some, Abbas resigned from that latter post on August 22nd, together with several other committee members.
Report: Hamas summons Palestinian factions to discuss terms of ten-year truce with Israel
Amid rumors of backchannel talks between Israel and Hamas, the Palestinian Islamist organization has reportedly summoned other Palestinian factions to Beirut where the details of a long-term truce with Israel will be discussed.
According to the London-based Arab language newspaper Rai-al-youm, Moussa Abu Marzouk, a senior Hamas figure, had already met with some of the factions in the Lebanese capital regarding the possibility of a ten-year truce with Israel.
Brokered by former British Prime Minister Tony Blair and agreed to by Khaled Mashaal, the terms of the truce would include the freeing of Palestinian militants re-arrested after being released in the Gilad Schalit deal, the construction of a floating port linked to Turkish Cyprus as well as a significant easing of restrictions on Gaza's entry points.
Petition Blames Israel for No Gaza Reconstruction
An online petition demanding that "all world leaders" pressure Israel to lift its naval blockade of Gaza received 500,000 signatures in one day, Haaretz reports.
Launched by the activist group Avaaz, the petition also has the backing of 30 others aid groups, including Oxfam and ActionAid.
The petition specifically calls for construction materials to be removed from the list of restricted materials, disregarding Hamas's own admission that cement is prioritized for military purposes, and not civilian needs.
According to the petition, world leaders have pledged $3.5 billion for the reconstruction of Gaza after Operation Protective Edge, but it accused Israel of causing "incalculable delays."
Israel ‘very interested’ in strengthening relations with Kurds
News published in the Financial Times on Sunday that Israel imports most of its oil from Iraq’s Kurdish areas came as no shock to those following the secretive Israel-Kurd relationship.
“The news is not so surprising, as it has been going on for some time,” Prof. Ofra Bengio, editor of the book Kurdish Awakening: Nation-Building in a Fragmented Homeland, told The Jerusalem Post on Monday.
“The Kurds do not want problems with Baghdad or Tehran, so they prefer to stay quiet about it and not upset anybody,” said Bengio, a senior research fellow at the Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies at Tel Aviv University.
It is a “wise idea to do it this way for now,” she added, saying the Kurds preferred to get aid from Israel through a third party.
“Israel is very much interested in strengthening relations, but they [the Kurds] are hesitant, especially not wanting to make it public,” she said, going on to assert that at some point they would need to go public, perhaps after gaining stronger US support.
Within week, India restates support for Palestinians, docks warship at Haifa to stress Israel ties
India displayed its Middle East juggling skills this week as the country’s foreign minister said in Cairo on Tuesday that India continued to support the Palestinian cause.
The statement came just days after an Indian naval warship docked in Haifa, in what New Delhi said was a sign of the “robust” ties between the two states.
In a speech to the Egyptian Council for Foreign Relations, Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj said Tuesday that “our strong traditional support to the Palestinian cause remains unwavering even as we pursue good relations with Israel.”
The Indian Express quoted her as telling the council that India has “strong interests in the Arab world and [has] been strongly committed to its various causes.
We have been supportive of your aspirations regarding the resolution of the Palestine- Israel issue.”
She is expected to visit Israel by the end of the year, as is Indian President Pranab Mukherjee, whose visit would be Israel’s first from an Indian president. Mukherjee is also expected to visit the Palestinian Authority and Jordan on that trip.
India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi is expected to visit in the first half of 2016 – also Israel’s first visit from an Indian prime minister.
StandWithUs: What Do Hindus and Jews Have in Common? Everything That Counts.
What do one of the nation's leading oncologists, an economist, detective and a former Indian cabinet minister, an expert on agr-itech, alternative green energy and cyber security, an independent human rights activist, and a retired college professor, who is a child of Holocaust survivors have in common? Everything that is important according to the over 300 Hindus and Jews who attended the first Hindu/ Jewish Dialogue at the Manav Seva Mandir Temple in Bensenville, Illinois August 23, 2015
The program, sponsored by the Global Hindu Heritage Foundation and by StandWithUs, was an important first step towards promoting greater understanding of the long historical connection of two ancient peoples, their common values, their amazing achievements, and the shared concerns about the threats of terrorism to India, Israel and the U.S.
This event, the first of its kind in the U.S., comes in the backdrop of a scheduled visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Israel and the meeting of PM Modi and PM Netanyahu in New York - the first such meet in a decade. It comes at a time of enhanced India-Israel economic co-operation, joint research and a deep sense of concern that Hindus and Jews have about the current agreement with Iran. They fear that it will result the increased likelihood of nuclear proliferation in an already volatile region. They also worry that the $150 billion Iran in scheduled to receive from the deal will both enrich and empower the leading state sponsor or terror and threaten the Middle East, the U.S. and the world.
The problem with British anti-Semitism, revisited
Corbyn himself is not, as far as anyone can tell, an anti-Semite. No accusations of the kind have been made, and there isn’t a scrap of evidence that he himself subscribes to racist views. Jeremy is about as far away from the stereotype of a goose-stepping, crowd-berating demagogue as you’re likely to get. He comes across as a mild-mannered, slightly weary geography teacher who sometimes gets a little bit tetchy. No one seriously thinks the Jews will need to start packing a spare suitcase if he somehow gets into power.
And yet. And yet. How is it that a fundamentally decent man has found himself at the heart of such a veritable rogue’s gallery of villains? What does it say about him that he sees no apparent contradiction between opening his arms to Muslim extremists in the name of dialogue, and yet would seek to boycott academics from the world’s only Jewish state? And what lessons can we draw about the fact that none of this has had any demonstrable negative impact upon his campaign?
Because so far, any and all accusations have by and large slid off him. Overt anti-Zionists have predictably enough rushed to his defence, accusing his critics of smearing him in bad faith (with a horrendous anti-Semitic backlash on social media against anyone who dares criticise Comrade Jeremy), but more worrying has been the general silence of the average Corbyn supporter. Those on the liberal-left who are most likely to rail against any perceived racism have simply ignored this issue — not just held their noses and backed the candidate most likely to further their economic goals, but denied there is a bad smell in the room entirely.
Counter-example. A few years back there was a to-do involving a local candidate running for the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP), a right-wing party whose primary goals are (a) leaving the European Union and (b) curtailing immigration levels. As you might imagine, such a party gets accused of ‘racism’ more than most. An unfortunate image of the candidate making what might have been a Hitler salute emerged on the internet, and he became embroiled in a minor scandal. He was eventually cleared — but not before UKIP suspended him.
Let that sink in. An awkwardly-angled arm was enough to temporarily stall the budding career of someone in a party whose very raison d’etre is the rejection of political correctness. But in the Labour party, the standard bearer of all that is right-on and good and just, serial associations with racists, Holocaust Deniers and Blood Libellers have been batted away with nary a concern.
Univ. Officials Demand Anti-Israel Professor be Reinstated
Over three dozen executive officers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have called to reinstate a professor whose job offer was rescinded for a series of anti-Israel tweets.
A total of 41 department heads, chairs and directors sent an open letter on Sunday demanding that Acting Chancellor Barbara Wilson and President Timothy Killeen call for the reinstatement of Steven Salaita at the university's next board meeting on September 10.
The saga over Salaita's employment began last summer when he published virulently anti-Israel tweets on his personal Twitter page in the midst of Operation Protective Edge.
One tweet branded Israel's defenders "awful human beings," while yet another suggested it would be no surprise if Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu "appeared on TV with a necklace made from the teeth of Palestinian children."
The tweets spread and before long were reported on by local media, enraging several donors, who called for Salaita - due to join the faculty of UIUC's American Indian Studies program - to be let go.
In response, the university revoked its offer to Salaita; a month later the board of trustees voted against his hiring.
PreOccupied Territory: It’s A Bit Creepy How You Never Tire Of Our ‘Occupation’ Mantra By Saeb Erekat, Palestinian Negotiator (satire)
It’s great to feel like the world has your back, it really does. International support has sustained the Palestinian cause for several generations now, and we appreciate it. But I must admit it’s a mite unsettling that without fail, whenever we put forth some grievance we have against the Occupation, no matter how absurd, you lap it up. We can do no wrong, and Israel can do no right. Not that we disagree with the sentiment, but it’s our cause, not yours. It gets creepy after a while. Like you’re stalking us or something.
Almost everyone enjoys positive attention. Solidarity is one of the most heartening phenomena in the world. But there’s a line, and not such a thin one, between solidarity and utter sycophantism. You crossed that line long ago, dear international community, and it’s starting to get awkward.
For example, it’s one thing for a Palestinian, or a Palestinian group, to reflexively blame Israel or misfortune. It’s in our culture, our history, and immediate experience. It’s another thing for you to parrot it uncritically, especially when you pile everything Israel says with reams of qualifiers: “allegedly,” “the army said,” “Israel claims.” I’m just trying to exploit the international media, not fuse my identity with it. You don’t need to continuously demonstrate your undying love and loyalty. We’re not lovers. Frankly, it’s kind of icky.
Telegraph article on “alleged” antisemitic attack in Paris has ‘little do with reality’
Major media outlets – including Associated Press, The New York Times and the Guardian – agree broadly on events which took place in France on July 13th last year, in which a violent mob of over 100 pro-Palestinian demonstrators tried to storm the Don Isaac Abravanel Synagogue in the Rue de la Roquette in eastern Paris, trapping hundreds of Jews inside. French Police and the members of the Jewish Defense League protected the synagogue, and eventually chased the mob away.
There are multiple videos and photos of the incident – one of many alarming antisemitic incidents in France that summer.
Yet, a bizarre article published in The Telegraph raises doubts about what the authors term the “alleged” antisemitic attack.
The writers, Peter Allen (a Paris based journalist) and James Rothwell (a trainee reporter for The Telegraph), focus their piece on a long article (over 6700 words) in the August edition of Vanity Fair (The troubling question in the French Jewish community: Is it time to leave?). However, in fisking a few specific claims about the attack on the synagogue, Telegraph authors raise additional questions which seem to cast doubt on the other noncontroversial elements of the story. Additionally, Allen and Rothwell ‘refute a couple of details which Vanity Fair (VF) never in fact claimed. (h/t Vandoren)
The New York Times’ Social Media Activist For Islamic Jihad
The New York Times has profiled Mohammad Allan, the Palestinian who recently made headlines with his two-month hunger strike. Throughout the article, Allan, a member of the Islamic Jihad terrorist organization, is the subject of quotes and anecdotes from admiring friends and family.
So unlike Hamas, Islamic Jihad has no ‘political wing,’ ‘social wing’ or anything other than a ‘military wing.’ A member of Islamic Jihad has no reason to be a member other than to promote terrorism and the murder of Israelis. This then is Mohammad Allan’s entire reason for being and something that the New York Times fails to enunciate.
Mr. Hussein said he expected his friend [Allan] to recover and, once he is released from the hospital, to return to his activism, practicing law and sharing his fiery opinions on social media.
Ultimately, the New York Times has turned Allan into a social media activist with some radical views. If Mohammad Allan lived in the U.S. and not Israel, the New York Times would not be so sympathetic. But only when a terrorist is taking on Israel does the New York Times treat him like a heroic opposition figure.
Daily Beast Refuses to Correct Its Incorrect Headline
In our article about a State Department official and The Washington Post fabricating Israeli praise for the nuclear deal with Iran, we briefly mentioned an inaccurate Daily Beast headline. We wanted to update you on where things stand with that.
That headline, above a piece by Jonathan Alter about Israel's former Shin Bet chief Ami Ayalon, stated, "Ex-Intel Chief: Iran Deal Good for Israel."
The problem is, Ayalon has explicitly noted that he doesn't believe the agreement is good. "I think the deal is bad," he told the Jerusalem Post. This means, contrary to the headline, the former security official actually believes the deal is "not good" (also Ayalon's words), even if he begrudgingly backs the deal because "it is the best plan currently on the table."
The Daily Beast is aware of what Ayalon has actually said. We brought it to the attention of editors. But it nonetheless has refused to correct its distorted headline.
BBC yet again ignores Gaza missile fire – in English
Late on the night of August 26th/27th a missile fired from the Gaza Strip landed in the Eshkol region of the Western Negev. The IDF responded by targeting a Hamas weapons manufacturing facility in the central Gaza Strip. There was no coverage of the attack on the BBC News website’s Middle East page on the morning of August 27th.
This was the second case of missile fire from Gaza hitting Israeli territory since the beginning of this month (at least two additional launches fell short). The prior attack was also ignored by BBC News but – like many of the previous incidents over the past year – the Israeli response to that attack on August 7th did receive Arabic language coverage.
So too was the case with latest incident: whilst there was no English language coverage of the Wednesday night attack despite the BBC clearly being aware that it took place, on the morning of August 27th an article appeared on the BBC Arabic website with a last-first headline which leads with the Israeli response.
NDP candidate for Don Valley East's facebook page listed support for three 2014 anti-Israel/pro-terrorist events
The word came down hard and heavy to every NDP and Liberal candidate in the upcoming federal election to go through their social media accounts and start purging embarrassing posts.
That came in the aftermath of disgraced Liberal candidate Ala Buzreba's resignation following exposure of a series of hateful twitter postings she had made. The 21 year-old originally claimed they were youthful indiscretions, but it soon emerged that as recently as a year ago, she had told Jewish journalist Ezra Levant, whose family has been in Canada for over a century, to "pack up and leave to Israel."
Buzreba's fall was only a few days after NDP candidate Morgan Wheeldon was given the heave-ho as the party's candidate in Kings-Hauts for his anti-Israel and anti-Canadian social media postings. All three major political parties have had bozo eruptions from their candidates. But the NDP in particular, both for the number of candidates doing it and the demented viciousness of things they've said or written in the past, has a cache of crazy that beats the others by an order of magnitude.
As the election campaign draws closer to its finish on October 19, more and more information about how unqualified and irresponsible Tom Mulcair's potential caucus is looking.
Today's example is the NDP candidate for Don Valley East, Khalid Ahmed, who recently purged from his facebook events page, support for three viciously anti-Israel events last year which were co-organized by the pro-terrorist Palestine House.
Monaco seeks forgiveness for deporting Jews during WW2
Monaco’s Prince Albert II apologized Thursday for his country’s role in deporting Jews to Nazi camps during World War II — more than seven decades after police rounded up scores of people from the seaside principality, including those who had sought refuge from the Holocaust in what they thought was a safe and neutral land.
“To say this today is to recognize a fact. To say it today, on this day, before you, is to ask forgiveness,” Albert said in a poignant speech recounting actions by Monegasque police during the war.
At his side were Serge and Beate Klarsfeld, renowned Nazi hunters and Holocaust researchers who encouraged Albert’s father to begin examining Monaco’s role during the war.
Albert unveiled a monument at the Monaco cemetery Thursday carved with the names of Monaco’s deported Jews. The date was chosen to mark 73 years since Monegasque authorities, under pressure from Nazi collaborationist leaders in France, rounded up at least 66 Jews on the night of Aug. 27-28, 1942.
DiACardio wins Shengjing Global Innovation Awards
An Israeli startup changing the way cardiograms (ultrasound exams of the heart) are decoded has won the final round of the Shengjing Global Innovation Awards 2015, a global startup competition held in China. DiACardio, which developed a revolutionary software to decode echocardiograms, triumphed over 21 startups from around the world.
“We are thrilled and proud to have won first place. It was a fascinating and empowering experience,” said Hila Goldman-Aslan, the company’s CEO. “The competition proves that Israel is home to promising technological initiatives. The competition opens up investment opportunities by Chinese investors, and we believe that winning it will advance the recognition of the ground-breaking technology that we have developed at DiACardio.”
The Israeli company Wayerz, which developed a platform for inter-bank charges (billing) while providing management, commands and control of inter-bank processes in real time, came in fifth place.
College kids can’t live without this Israeli app
At some American colleges, as much as 99 percent of the student population uses Tapingo, the Israeli mobile commerce app for ordering on the go from any food establishment on campus.
Since 2012, Tapingo has partnered with about 100 campuses across the United States and Canada. Half a million users (students, faculty and staff) rely on the app two to five times per week to get their chow with minimal effort, accounting for nearly half of all food orders placed on participating campuses.
Judging by the tweets on Tapingo’s Twitter page, this app is nothing short of a revolution.
“Tapingo is the biggest game changer since Thomas Edison invented the lightbulb,” one student tweeted, while another wrote in early August, “One thing to really look forward to when going back to school is Tapingo.”
Considering that Facebook began as a college phenomenon, the possibility for Tapingo’s growth is not just pie in the sky. With $36 million in investments, and a rapidly expanding customer base, Tapingo is poised to become the big enchilada.
‘Homeland’ creator to direct movie on rescue of Ethiopian Jews
American film distributor Fox Searchlight has bought the rights for an upcoming movie on Israel’s rescue of Ethiopian Jews in the early 1980s, to be written and directed by “Homeland” producer Gideon Raff.
Raff, who is Israeli, is slated to serve as screenwriter, producer and director of “Operation Brothers,” which will follow the rescue of thousands of Ethiopians, starting with prime minister Menachem Begin’s 1977 order to the Mossad to devise a plan to bring the community to Israel, Variety reported Wednesday.
Alexandra Milchan, who produced the blockbuster “The Wolf of Wall Street,” is also to set to join the movie’s production team.
The Israeli government started undertaking efforts to bring Ethiopian Jews to Israel through Sudan at the end of 1979. The Jews faced discrimination by the local government and were banned from emigration to Israel, but thousands were brought in a series of airlifts, many of them from refugee camps in Sudan.
The two largest rescue operations, Operation Moses in 1984-1985 and Operation Solomon in 1991, brought over 20,000 Ethiopian Jews to Israel.
Over the last 30 years, some 92,000 Ethiopians have immigrated to Israel.
Larry King hearts Tel Aviv
Interviewer extraordinaire Larry King is in Israel for the first time in 20 years and according to his Twitter and Facebook posts, he loves Tel Aviv.
“Is there anything better than lunch by the water? — in Tel Aviv, Israel,” he posted on his social media page. The next photo of a Tel Aviv beach-scape included the capiton: “Sunset in Tel Aviv. What a beautiful city!”
King’s Twitter feed is also full of beach views and pictures of the 81-year-old being interviewed by Israeli media.
King is in town as a guest of the Holon education department. He is taking part in a conference on the topic of the American Jewish education system and relations between the US and Israel.
Last year, King and Technion President Peretz Lavie set up the Israel-Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce to promote cooperation between the two entrepreneurship hubs in Israel and California.
Larry King Asks Saudi Arabian Fan If Taking Pictures With Jews Is Permitted
Jewish former CNN host Larry King asked a Saudi Arabian fan if taking pictures with Jews is allowed in his country, before agreeing to pose for a photo with the man, The New York Times reported on Wednesday.
The world-famous interviewer was leaving the Ritz Carlton hotel in Washington, D.C. with a New York Times reporter when a “dark-skinned man” approached and asked to take a picture with him, according to the publication. Whereupon, King asked the fan where he was from. When the man said Saudi Arabia, King replied, ‘‘I’m a Jew! You sure it’s O.K. to get your picture taken with a Jew back in Saudi Arabia?’’
After reassuring King that he actually has many fans in Saudi Arabia, the two smiled for the photo.
According to the report, after the fan thanked King and shook his hand, the TV star looked him in the eye and said, ‘‘Now, please, go fight ISIS!’’
New Jerusalem Street Honors Savior of 40,000 Jews During Holocaust
Mayor Nir Barkat inaugurated a new street in Jerusalem in an official ceremony this week to honor Moshe (Miklós) Krausz, a little-known Hungarian Jew who saved about 40,000 Jews during the Holocaust
The street-naming publicly recognizes and honors Krausz’s work in a rare instance of recognition.
“This commemoration only begins to correct a historic injustice,” said Nachi Eyal, CEO of The Legal Forum for Israel and one of the people behind this initiative.
Eyal told Tazpit:
Krausz was a man of the World Zionist movement and the Mizrachi movement who saved tens of thousands of Jews and yet his name has been left out of the public knowledge. Krausz died alone and almost forgotten in Jerusalem after having immigrated here with the end of World War II.
Krausz served as the director of the Palestine Office for the World Zionist Movement in Budapest and was responsible for obtaining emigration permits for Jews to the British Mandate of Palestine.
Hero of Soviet Jewish aliyah dies at age 88
Mark Dymshits, a prominent figure in the campaign to bring Soviet Jews to Israel, passed away on Wednesday at the age of 88.
Dymshits was most known for his role in "Operation Wedding," the attempt in 1970 to draw international attention to the plight of Soviet Jews who were being denied permission to emigrate to Israel. Dymshits, a pilot, planned, along with a group of other Soviet refuseniks, to seize a plane and escape to the West.
The operation failed and Dymshits was sentenced to death by a Soviet court. International pressure led to the sentence being reduced to 15 years in prison. Dymshits was later released as part of a swap deal between the Soviet Union and the U.S., and he immigrated to Israel.
"Mark Dymshits was a hero of Israel in our generation," Immigrant Absorption Minister Zeev Elkin said. "It is very symbolic that he left us during a year in which Israel marks the 25th anniversary of the great aliyah from the Soviet Union. We are all greatly indebted to him and his personal story belongs in our national ethos. May his memory be blessed."