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College Student Interrogated over Jewish Background

(Photo: flickr/chrisjohnbeckett)

(Photo: flickr/chrisjohnbeckett)

Today marks the beginning of the annual Israeli Apartheid Week. This harshly anti-Israel event will spread its message for two weeks this year. But Arutz Sheva reports that such discrimination is already rampant in the U.S., where a UCLA student was recently interrogated by the student board because she is Jewish:

A student’s Jewish affiliation became the subject of a heated debate at University of California in Los Angeles (UCLA) earlier this month, after the student government nearly scrapped her acceptance due to her background.

Student Rachel Beyda applied to be a member of the UCLA Judicial Board in February, and presented herself as a candidate in front of the Board.

However, the meeting quickly dissolved into a debate over whether her Jewish background and affiliation with Jewish life on campus is a “conflict of interest”…

Four students who opposed her candidacy – Fabienne Roth, Manjot Singh, Negeen Sadeghi-Movahed and Sofia Moreno Haq, as named by student newspaper the Daily Bruin – also made a public apology following their comments.

Roth had begun the debate by asking whether Beyda could have an “unbiased” view.

“Given that you are a Jewish student and very active in the Jewish community,” Roth asked Beyda, “How do you see yourself being able to maintain an unbiased view?”

Beyda was then asked to leave the room, wherein a long debate ensued over the issue …

The incident garnered a significant backlash from the Jewish community on campus.

Baral later stated to the Daily Bruin, “It was definitely very difficult for me to sit there as they were discussing the appointment and were quite clearly biased against her because of her Jewish identity and her affiliation to the community.”

“As a Jewish student, this for me echoed a centuries-long sort of connotation of Jews being unable to be truly loyal,” he said, adding that he is working on a draft resolution against anti-Semitism on campus.

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Thursday, February 26th, 2015 at 8:53 AM  | Stand for Israel

US College Campuses Face Rising Anti-Semitism

(Photo: facebook)

(Photo: facebook)

Last week, Stand for Israel shared a video showing the rising problem of anti-Semitism on college campuses across the United States. Today, The Times of Israel reports on a poll that shows well over half of all Jewish students have faced hatred because of their faith:

More than half of current American Jewish college students have personally witnessed or experienced an anti-Semitic incident, according to a new study.

Some 54 percent of Jewish college students participating in a survey released Monday by the Louis D. Brandeis Center and Trinity College said they had experienced or witnessed anti-Semitism within the past academic year. The survey was taken in the spring of 2014, prior to the outbreak of hostilities last summer in Gaza …

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Tuesday, February 24th, 2015 at 10:33 AM  | Stand For Israel

Terrorists Increase Focus on Jewish Targets

Photo: René Sinn - Wikipedia

Photo: René Sinn – Wikipedia

A chilling video threat issued over the weekend by the Somali terror group al-Shabaab against specific Jewish-owned malls provides further indication that Islamist groups around the world are setting their sights on Jewish targets, according to a leading expert on Jewish security and terrorist threats:

“The most recent threat by al-Shabaab against malls, and more specifically against Jewish-owned institutions around the world, is another indication that global jihadi groups are increasingly focusing on Jews and Jewish institutions as a way to rally support for their cause,” said Dr. Joshua Gleis, president of Gleis Security Consulting.

Al-Shabaab’s recording, posted to YouTube on Saturday, mostly glorifies the group’s bloody 2013 attack on the Jewish-owned West­gate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya which left 63 people dead and at least 175 wounded.

Towards the end of the nearly 77 minute video, a masked man with an English accent calls on Jihadists to attack specific targets

“If just a handful of mujahedeen fighters could bring Kenya to a complete standstill for nearly a week, then imagine what a dedicated mujahedeen in the West could do to the American or Jewish-owned shopping centers across the world,” he says.

“What if such an attack was to occur in the Mall of America in Minnesota, or the West Edmonton Mall in Canada, or in London’s Oxford Street, or any of the hundred or so Jewish-owned Westfield shopping centers dotted right across the western world?” he continues. …

Responding to the video in an interview on CNN, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said, “This latest statement from al-Shabaab reflects the new phase we’ve evolved to in the global terrorist threat, in that you have groups such as al-Shabaab and ISIL publicly calling for independent actors in their homelands to carry out attacks.”

Regarding the specific threat to Mall of America, Johnson said: “Anytime a terrorist organization calls for an attack on a specific place, we’ve got to take that seriously.” He advised people going to the Mall of America to be particularly careful, Reuters reported.

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Monday, February 23rd, 2015 at 9:16 AM  | Stand For Israel

Persecution Defines Life for Yemen’s Remaining Jews

Yemenite Jews who have made aliyah with help from The Fellowship

Yemenite Jews who have made aliyah with help from The Fellowship

Yemen’s once-vibrant Jewish community has been reduced to untended cemeteries, empty villages, and less than 100 individuals. Rod Nordland, writing for The New York Times, takes a deeper look at life for this country’s Jewish community, which is marked by persecution and fear:

The last of Yemen’s once numerous Jews, who predated Muslims by many centuries, have seldom been so threatened and had so few protectors. … Most of them live in Amran Province, deep in territory controlled by Houthi militants, whose leaders have made anti-Semitism a central plank in their political platform. …

The Houthis, who now dominate the country, are particularly strong in the two places with confirmed remaining Yemeni Jews: here in Raida, where there are 55 Jews, and in Sana, the capital, where a small number live under what amounts to house arrest by the Houthi leadership.

The two countries that have long facilitated Jewish emigration from Yemen — the United States and Britain — both closed their embassies last week, as did most other Western countries. And the Yemeni strongman who for three decades was the Jews’ protector, former President Ali Abdullah Saleh, is not only out of power, but also, more recently, out of favor with the Houthis.

“We have no friends,” said [Abraham Jacob, one of the country’s remaining Jews], “so we just try to stay away from everyone as much as we can.”

The Fellowship has long been committed to rescuing Yemen’s Jews. Click here to read the story of a Yemenite family that was brought to Israel though our On Wings of Eagles program.

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Thursday, February 19th, 2015 at 8:46 AM  | Stand For Israel

Anti-Semitism on Campus

 

We are accustomed to hearing about anti-Semitism in Europe, where Jews are one of the prime targets of Islamic terror. But many people are not aware that America’s Jewish population has also become the target of anti-Semitic hatred and violence. This video produced by The Israel Project depicts how difficult it is to be a Jew on many American college campuses.

- Ami Farkas

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Wednesday, February 18th, 2015 at 8:27 AM  | Stand For Israel

Anti-Semitism and Europe

We keep hearing about the rising tide of anti-Semitism in Europe. And while surveys and statistics do illustrate the increasing difficulty and danger of European Jewish life, nothing shows it more clearly than seeing hatred in action.

Israeli journalist Zvika Klein courageously ventured through the streets of Paris while donning a kippah – a skullcap worn by Orthodox Jews – and with a hidden cameraman by his side. During his tour of France, he was taunted, insulted, and spit at, simply for having the chutzpah to walk the Parisian streets as a Jew. He documented his experience and put the short film on YouTube.

Anyone with familiarity of Jewish and Christian history in Muslim countries knows that life was never easy for non-Muslims living in Islamic lands. There were periods of relative calm, where money extorted from Jews and Christians enabled them to get by for periods of time. Yet riots, looting, and discriminatory laws – especially towards Jews – were common since the dawn of Islam.

To think that Islamic intolerance and hatred of Jews is an outcome of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is shortsighted and ignorant. Jews have always had a target on their backs in the Middle East, for hundreds of years before the Zionist dream was realized. What we are seeing on the streets of Paris, Copenhagen, and other parts of Europe is deplorable, yet the fact that such blatant anti-Semitism has found a home on the continent where six millions Jews were murdered is simply unbelievable.

- Ami Farkas

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Tuesday, February 17th, 2015 at 9:17 AM  | Stand For Israel

Soldiers Guarding French Jewish Center Stabbed

(Photo: flickr/Gwenael Piaser)

(Photo: flickr/Gwenael Piaser)

In yet another attack against a Jewish target in France, The Algemeiner reports that three French soldiers guarding a Jewish community center in the city of Nice were stabbed by an Islamist assailant:

A knife-wielding assailant attacked and wounded three French soldiers who were protecting a Jewish community center in the southern French city of Nice,  the French-Jewish website JSSNews reported.

The soldiers were guarding a building in the city’s Massena square which houses the Jewish community center and a Jewish radio station.

Authorities managed to apprehend the assailant, Moussa Coulibaly, 30, but not before he slashed one soldier in the face, a second in the leg and the third on the chin.

Coulibaly traveled to Turkey last week but was turned back at customs, officials said, which suggests his intention may have been to join the Islamic State terrorist group.
Coulibaly is not thought to be related to Amedy Coulibaly, who perpetrated the deadly attack at the Hyper Cacher Jewish supermarket in Paris on January 9, in which four Jews were killed.

The latest report comes in the wake of  a series of increasingly serious attacks on French military personnel protecting Jewish schools and institutions.

Thousands of soldiers tasked with securing Jewish institutions in France endure frequent abuse from passersby, the French Le-Progres site reported Monday.

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Tuesday, February 3rd, 2015 at 3:26 PM  | Stand for Israel

Confronting Anti-Semitism

(Photo: Olivier Fitoussi)

(Photo: Olivier Fitoussi)

Last week’s 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau reminded us again of the continued fight against worldwide anti-Semitism, a problem that is once again on the rise in Europe and elsewhere. Writing at the Gatestone Institute, Alan Dershowitz takes an eye-opening look at the four different types of anti-Semitism facing the Jewish people and the world:

There are several distinct, but sometimes overlapping, types of anti-Semitism.  The first is traditional, right wing, fascist Jew hatred that has historically included theological, racial, economic, social, personal and cultural aspects.  We are seeing a resurgence of this today in Greece, Hungary and other European countries with rising right wing parties that are anti-Muslim as well as anti-Jewish.

The second is Muslim anti-Semitism.  Just as not all Greeks and Hungarians are anti-Semitic, so too not all Muslims suffer from this malady.  But far too many do.  It is wrong to assume that only Muslims who manifest Jew hatred through violence, harbor anti-Semitic views.  Recent polls show an extraordinarily high incidence of anti-Semitism—hatred of Jews as individuals, as a group and as a religion,—throughout North Africa, the Middle East and Muslim areas in Europe.  This hatred manifests itself not only in words, but in deeds, such as taunting Jews who wear yarmulkes, vandalizing Jewish institutions, and occasional violence directed at individual Jews.  Among a small number of extremists it also results in the kind of deadly violence we have seen in Telouse, Paris, Brussels and other parts of Europe.  Several decades ago it manifested itself in attacks on synagogues by Palestinian terrorists, including some operating on behalf of the Palestine Liberation Organization.

Third, there is hard left anti-Zionism that sometimes melds into subtle and occasionally overt anti-Semitism.  This pathology is seen in the double standard imposed on everything Jewish, including the nation state of the Jewish people.  It is also reflected in blaming “Jewish power”, and the “pushiness” of Jews in demanding support for Israel.  I’m not referring to criticism of Israeli policies or actions.  I’m referring to…

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Monday, February 2nd, 2015 at 9:55 AM  | Stand For Israel

Yemen Coup Could Spell Trouble for Local Jewish Community

(Photo: wikicommons/ Cacahuate)

(Photo: wikicommons/ Cacahuate)

A takeover of the Yemenite capital of Sanaa by Houthi rebels may put the country’s Jewish community at risk. University of Haifa professor emeritus Yosef Tobi told The Jerusalem Post that given the Shi’ite group’s track record, it is clear the community is in danger due to religious hate and extreme Islam:

Sanaa’s Jewish community lives in a guarded district under the protection of the central government, after fleeing to the capital from the town of Saada following Houthis threats in 2007.

“We warn you to leave the area immediately… Ignore this message, and we give you a period of 10 days, and you will regret it,” a Houthi representative warned the Jewish community of Saada at the time.

“Rising societal tensions, and the government’s lack of resources and capacity to protect [the Jews] adequately from increased threats in late 2008 and early 2009, led to increased emigration of the community,” according to a report on the US State Department website.

After the Houthi rebels entered the capital last year, supporters gathered in the streets, some chanting “Death to America! Death to the Jews! Victory to Islam.” The Houthi logo features the phrases “Death to Israel” and “Damn the Jews.”

“The Jews of Yemen are in big danger now,” said Michael Jankelowitz, a former spokesman to the international media at the Jewish Agency and World Zionist Organization. …

Yemen boasted a Jewish population of more than 50,000 during the mid-20th century; there are now fewer than 100 Jews in the capital, with another community of similar size in the northern town of Raida. The majority of the country’s Jews immigrated to Israel shortly after the establishment of the state.

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Friday, January 23rd, 2015 at 9:06 AM  | Stand For Israel

Israeli Ambassador to Europe: Take Stand Against Anti-Semitism

(Photo: wikicommons)

(Photo: wikicommons)

With attacks against Jews increasing throughout Europe – culminating in the recent Paris murders – something has to be done about the continent’s rampant Jewish hatred. Ron Prosor, Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations, has called on Europe’s leaders to stand against anti-Semitism:

Israel’s Ambassador to the UN Ron Prosor called on European leaders on Thursday to take a stand against anti-Semitism.

The UN General Assembly held its first-ever meeting devoted to anti-Semitism in response to a global increase in violence against Jews – a meeting scheduled even before the recent attack on a kosher supermarket in Paris.

“Let the message echo from the halls of the UN to the streets of Europe to the capital of every nation – stand for human rights and human dignity by taking a stand against anti-Semitism,” Prosor said.

Prosor asserted that “The struggle against anti-Semitism must be a priority for every nation because the hatred that begins with the Jews never ends with the Jews. History has shown us time and again that when a nation’s Jews are not safe, the entire society is at risk.”

“Europe is being tested,” he said. “We don’t need any more monuments commemorating the Jews who were murdered in Europe, we need a strong and enduring commitment to the living Jews in Europe. If the governments of Europe succeed in defending their Jewish communities, then they will succeed in defending liberty and democracy.”

And vowed that “The days when Jews were the world’s victims are over. We will never again be helpless and we will never again remain silent. Today we have the State of Israel standing guard.

“We have seen the evil that man is capable of, and so we must be vigilant. We must spot the warning signs and act swiftly to condemn anti-Semitism. I call on every nation to stand tall beside us. Refuse to allow evil to take root. Refuse to be silent. And refuse to submit to indifference.”

 

 

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Thursday, January 22nd, 2015 at 10:56 AM  | Stand For Israel

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Rabbi’s Commentary
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This past Tuesday, all eyes were on Washington, D.C., where Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu brought his case against a nuclear Iran…


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