Unfiltered Palestinian View of Israel’s 66th Independence Day

Teaching children to shoot all of the Jews

End of Hope (Hatikvka)

Transcripts follow the jump.

Al-Aqsa TV (Hamas) program Tomorrow’s Pioneers – May 2, 2014

Nahul the bee: Listen my friend. Are there Jews where you are?
Boy (Qais): No. Not at the moment.
Nahul: I heard they come to you every day.
Qais: Yes, but not now.
Nahul: Listen, friend; do like this with your hands [makes fists], and when they come to you, punch them; make their face red like a tomato.
Qais: Allah willing, so that we can liberate Palestine.
Nahul: Allah willing….

Nahul: My friend Qais – anyway, Rawan, I tell him to take a stone, and when the Jews come, to take it and throw it at them.
Child host (Rawan): Of course, the Jewish neighbors.
Nahul: To smash them.
Rawan: If his neighbors are Jews or Zionists? Yes….

Rawan: Tulin, why do you want to be a police officer? Like who?
Girl Tulin: Like my uncle.
Rawan: Which uncle?
Tulin: Ahmed.
Rawan: Is he a policeman? [Tulin nods]
Rawan: OK, so what does a policeman do?
Nahul: He catches thieves, and people who make trouble.
Rawan: And shoots Jews. Right?
Tulin: Yes.
Rawan: You want to be like him? [Girl nods] Allah willing, when you grow up.
Tulin: So that I can shoot Jews. [Nahul the bee cheers]
Rawan: All of them? All of them?
Tulin: Yes.
Rawan: Good.

“End of Hope”

Hamas celebration of Israel’s 66th Independence Day – same old genocidal threats against Jews.


The Zionist army was built of wax
And now it has melted and has no hope.
The bastard Jews that were once here,
Somebody tell what is left of them.
Two parts: the first will be deported
To their country of origin, if they choose that.
Whereas the stupid ones who persist in staying
Their fate is sealed underneath the dust.
The name of the holy city will revert to what it was,
Our capital – Bayt al-Maqdis – not Jerusalem.

Flyers Call on Ukrainian Jews to “Register”

Leaflet distributed in Donetsk, Ukraine, calls for all Jewish people over age 16 to register as Jews. (Photo: The Coordination Forum for Countering Antisemitism)

Translation from NCSJ:
Dear citizens of Jewish nationality! Due to the fact that leaders of the Jewish Community of Ukraine support the Bandera junta in Kiev and are hostile to the Orthodox Donetsk Republic and its citizens, the main headquarters of the Donetsk Republic declares the following:

  • Every citizen of Jewish nationality older than 16 years, residing in the territory of a sovereign Donetsk Republic has to go to Donetsk Regional Administrator to see the Nationalities Commissioner, Office 514, for registration. The registration fee is $50.
  • Persons should have with them with cash in the amount of $50 for registration, a passport to mark their religion, and documents of family members, as well as ownership documents for their properties and vehicles.
  • In case of failure to register, the perpetrators will lose their citizenship and will be deported outside the republic, with their property confiscated.

— by Elka Looks, Jewish Community Relations Council

The Jewish Community Relations Council was appalled to learn that flyers were distributed in the Ukrainian City of Donetsk calling on Jews to “register” their household with the local Nationalities Commission Office.

The flyers required Jews to bring a $50 fee to cover the placement of a “religious nationality” mark in passports, and to register their property and possessions with local authorities. Jews who failed to comply would face deportation. The flyers were signed in the name of Denis Pushilin, the leader of Donetsk’s pro-Russian separatists, who led the takeover of several government buildings and claimed the city as the Donetsk Republic.

According to the National Conference Supporting Jews in Russia Ukraine, the Baltic States & Eurasia (NCSJ), which has been in direct contact with Donetsk Jewish community leaders, authorities have rejected any association with the flyers, and Pushlin has denied authorship. The origin of the flyers, which were distributed by three individuals wearing ski masks and the flag of the Russian Federation near the Donetsk synagogue, remains unknown.

According to the NCSJ’s statement on this deplorable matter, they are “continuing to work with local Jewish leaders and national officials to do everything possible to find those responsible for this outrageous and reprehensible act, and to hold them accountable.”

JCRC commends Secretary of State John Kerry and U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt, both of whom swiftly and unequivocally condemned the flyers. We were also pleased to see the local, national and even international media coverage this heinous act received; we and the world cannot stand idly by.

A Jewish “Connection”

Noah Pozner (2006-2012)

— by Rabbi Avi Shafran

Most people, asked if there was any specific Jewish connection to the recent horrific murder of 20 first-graders and six staff members at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, would probably respond “Noah Pozner,” one of the six-year-old casualties.

There’s another Jewish connection, though, or at least an imagined one, to the massacre.  Even while the slaughtered innocents were still being prepared for burial, neo-Nazi websites began to assert, on the sole basis of their operators’ fevered imaginations and an ugly sort of wishful thinking, that Adam Lanza, the mass murderer, was a Jew.

Or at least, the bloggers claimed, a half-Jew (although from which half the evil emerged was left unclear).

More after the jump.

We don’t know him from Adam.

One site proffered evidence, too: The name “Adam,” it explained, is exclusively used by Jews.  (How clueless we’ve all been about, among others, Adam Smith and Adam Clayton Powell.)

An Iranian website, Qodsna.com, quickly joined the contemptible chorus, adding the accusation that the notoriously self-censoring Western media, which had provided nary a word about Mr. Lanza’s alleged Jewish parentage, had actively conspired to hide it.  The article was revealingly titled “The Common Roots of the Palestine and Sandy Hook Crimes.” (A second article on the site focused on post-massacre calls for gun control, explaining how “Jewish rabbis” in America fear a possible wave of attacks against their fellow Jews because of Israeli actions. It carried the headline “The Zionist Lobby’s Gun Control Plan For America.”)

Such hatred-fueled fantasies presented as fact (and accepted as such by millions of ignorant or malevolent people in certain parts of the world, including some of the mental backwoods of our own country) alarm many Jews – and, for that matter, many non-Jews uninfected by the virus of anti-Semitism.

To me, though, they are also a source of pride, and even bring a smile of sorts to my heart, if not quite to my face.  Because they illustrate the uniqueness of Jews.  The Jewish People’s “chosen-ness” is not, of course, justification for haughtiness or, G-d forbid, derogating others.  The Torah teaches that all mankind is created in the image of G-d and possesses wondrous potential.  Being chosen here means being charged with setting an example to others of life in service of the Divine. (Sometimes we succeed; sometimes, lamentably, we don’t.)

And yet, there are intriguing indications of Jews being somehow… different.  The wild and inexplicable hatred of others for us is one. Jews introduced monotheism and morality to the world; the disproportionate abundance of Jewish contributions to society has been wondered at by observers as diverse as Mark Twain, Bob Dylan and Ann Landers.  And yet, confoundingly, we are hated at any given historical period or happening, for whatever “reason” can be conjured from thin air by malignant  minds.

What other ethnicity or religion has merited a special note from “The Google Team” that searches for information about it (in this case, the word “Jew”) “may have” yielded “results that were very disturbing,” and the conglomerate’s assurance that “the views expressed by the sites in your results are not in any way endorsed by Google”?

Being hated isn’t pleasant, but it can still be reassuringly telling (especially considering who the haters tend to be).

Recent days also saw the loss of a special man, Senator Daniel Inouye of Hawaii.  I recall his quiet but powerful recollection to an Agudath Israel group in Washington of how he first heard about Jews, in 1945.  He was undergoing rehabilitation at a New Jersey military hospital after losing an arm fighting in Europe in World War II.  Another injured soldier in the facility mentioned having helped liberate a concentration camp, and described what he had seen. Mr. Inouye asked what the inmates had done to merit being starved, gassed, stacked like firewood and cremated in ovens.

The soldier’s answer, Mr. Inouye recalled, “changed my life.” The man explained that the inmates had been Jews, and “Well you know, Dan, people don’t like Jews.”

Mr. Inouye was flabbergasted at the idea that a people can be so hated, not for anything they had done but simply because of their peoplehood.  And, after doing historical research and meeting countless Jews, he became a lifelong admirer and friend of the Jewish people, and an indefatigable defender of Israel in the Senate to the day of his death.

It’s been a sad few weeks.

© 2012 Rabbi Avi Shafran

“It’s All in the Angle” (Torah Temimah Publications), a collection of selected essays by Rabbi Shafran, is now available from Judaica Press.

Standing Ovation for World Premiere of Slaying The Dragon

The audience roared to its feet at the conclusion of the premiere of the new opera, Slaying the Dragon on Thursday night, with music by Michael Ching and an original libretto by Ellen Frankel. Perhaps you know the name, Ellen Frankel? Former long-time CEO of Jewish Publication Society and author of numerous books, a life-time goal, to create opera was satisfied in this powerful event at the Prince Music Theater in downtown Philadelphia. A renaissance woman among us and there’s another week of performances ahead!
Inspired by the true story about a Grand Dragon of the Klu Klux Klan and a transformative series of experiences with a rabbinic couple that was chronicled in the book Not the Sword by Kathryn Watterson, Slaying the Dragon stimulated voluminous lobby discussion of the challenging events portrayed which challenge each of us to find our own courageous voice in a world increasingly rife with racism, hatred and intolerance.

How was it for Ellen? In her own words:

After working on the opera, “Slaying the Dragon” for two years, through nine revisions of the libretto, seven workshops, and hours of collaboration with a team of talented artists, it’s hard to believe that the opera has finally taken its bow on the stage before live audiences — and to enthusiastic applause.There’s no feeling like it in the world!

Slaying the Dragon continues at the Helen Corning Warden Theater June 14 & 16 at 8:00 pm and June 17 at 2 pm. It is appropriate for a wide age range and those from all backgrounds. As Ellen added: “I’ve been incredibly gratified by the audience’s positive reaction, especially from a group of African-American high school students, who told me how meaningful and real it was to them. ‘It was so real, so emotional,’ one said.”

Tickets: www.OperaTheater.org


The Anti-Israel Movement: BDS On Campus

This weekend, on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania, a conference will be held. The gathering, which the University is hosting, has been arranged by a group which is identified by the acronym BDS. BDS refers to the movement dedicated to punishing, vilifying and delegitimizing the State of Israel in three ways.

  • First, this group encourages “B”, boycotting Israeli products.
  • Second, the group advocates “D”, divesting from companies which do business in and with Israel.
  • And third is “S”, the efforts to convince governments around the world to impose sanctions against Israel.

[Read more…]