December 7, 2018

In-Depth Issues:

Identity of Hizbullah Operative Seen in Tunnel Video Revealed (i24News)
    An Israeli security official told i24News that the Hizbullah operative caught on camera by the IDF in a cross border tunnel this week was Dr. Imad "Azaladin" Fahs, a commander of the Hizbullah observation unit on the border and a commander in the tunnel unit.
    Fahs, in his 30s, has a PhD in mechanical engineering from Tehran's University of Technology and trained with Mexican drug cartels near the U.S. border.
    See also Video: Hizbullah Operative Caught on Camera Inside Attack Tunnel (Israel Defense Forces)

Report: Hizbullah Moving Missiles from Syria to South Lebanon (Israel Hayom)
    Syrian opposition officials said that Hizbullah was moving OTR-21 Tochka missile batteries to southern Lebanon. The OTR-21 is a Soviet-made tactical ballistic missile with a range of 15 to 185 km. (9 to 115 miles).
    Other reports said Hizbullah was also deploying short-range Iranian-made projectiles in southern Lebanon, adding that the group has blocked dozens of roads to allow the convoy smooth transport.

Israeli Soldiers Trained in Europe to Destroy Hizbullah Tunnels - Yaniv Kubovich (Ha'aretz)
    A year ago, 11 members of the IDF engineering corps were sent to Europe for special training with the best experts in the world and learned about working with similar rock types as the ones in which Hizbullah dug its tunnels from Lebanon.
    "We realized we had to train people to excavate" - to drill into rock, said a senior IDF officer.
    "We trained in terrain we weren't accustomed to, working in hard earth and rocky terrain and in tough areas, in order to learn about excavating."

Bahrain Backs Israel on Hizbullah Tunnels - Raphael Ahren and Adam Rasgon (Times of Israel)
    Bahrain's foreign minister on Thursday expressed support for Israel's current operation to expose and destroy Hizbullah's cross-border tunnels.
    "Is terrorist Hizbullah's digging of the tunnels under Lebanon's border not a flagrant threat to Lebanon's stability, which it shares responsibility for? Who bears responsibility when neighboring countries take upon themselves to eliminate the threat they face?" Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa wrote on his Twitter account, in Arabic.

European Council Calls on All EU States to Adopt IHRA Definition of Anti-Semitism (Jerusalem Post)
    The Council of the European Union called on EU member states Thursday to take steps to ensure security for Jewish communities, institutions and citizens.
    The declaration, agreed on by interior ministers from the 28 EU member states, calls on all EU member states to endorse the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance's working definition of anti-Semitism.
    The declaration was put on the agenda and promoted by Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, whose country holds the rotating presidency of the council.

BDS Declared Illegal for All Cities in Chile - Lahav Harkov (Jerusalem Post)
    After the Chilean city of Valdivia decided to ban contracts with any company linked to Israel and called on Israel's ambassador to Chile to be expelled, the Chilean National Comptroller determined this week that it is illegal for municipalities to boycott Israel.
    The comptroller determined that municipalities do not have the legal authority to conduct relations with foreign powers. The law also prohibits "arbitrary discrimination that is based on considerations such as nationality."
    Still, the Chilean Congress approved a motion to boycott Israel last week.
    Chile is thought to be home to the largest Palestinian diaspora community outside of the Middle East.

Ohio State University Student Government Rejects BDS - Jackson Richman (JNS)
    Ohio State University's student government, in a 30-7 vote, rejected a resolution Wednesday calling on the school to separate itself from firms that do business with Israel and to sever academic ties with the Jewish state.

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French Jews Live in Fear amid Rising Anti-Semitic Acts - Antonia Mortensen (CNN)
    According to the Jewish Agency for Israel, 55,000 French Jews have left the country since the year 2000.
    In November, the French government said that anti-Semitic acts had increased by 69% over the first nine months of 2018. Since 2006, 11 people have died in anti-Semitic attacks in France.
    Yonathan Arfi, vice president of CRIF, an umbrella body for Jewish groups in France, says there have been "several hundred attacks" since 2000, with the nature of those attacks changing markedly.
    "Before it was graffiti on buildings, now it ends up with (the) killing of people and terrorism, so we see that the nature of anti-Semitism has changed dramatically."

Migraine Relief from an Israeli Neuro-Modulation Device - Brian Blum (Israel21c)
    One of the most promising treatments for migraines is occipital nerve stimulation, where a small pulse generator is implanted at the base of the skull to send pain-relieving electrical impulses to the brain.
    What if the same effect could be achieved without surgery - and for a lower cost than the tens of thousands of dollars required for an occipital nerve implant?
    Israelis Shmuel Shany and Amit Dar established Neurolief to develop a noninvasive neuro-modulation device that is rechargeable and folds up to the size of a sunglasses case.
    One study demonstrated an average 80% reduction in pain symptoms. That's double the rate for implanted devices and far more than a couple of Tylenols can achieve.

Israeli Scientists Create Personalized Tissue Implants (Times of Israel)
    Researchers at Tel Aviv University have created the first fully personalized tissue implants. Based entirely on a patient's own cells, they are 100% compatible with transplant patients.
    Fatty tissue cells were extracted from animal subjects, then converted into stem cells that can be manipulated to generate any tissue type needed by the body.
    Prof. Tal Dvir said the new technology could be used to "engineer any tissue type, and after transplantation we can efficiently regenerate any diseased or injured organ - a heart after a heart attack, a brain after trauma or with Parkinson's disease, a spinal cord after injury....These implants will not be rejected by the body."
    "Theoretically we can work in every disease or disorder that cells are involved in, where tissue is dying. We can create the tissue to fix that injury by a simple injection of materials and cells at the injury site. We will replace diseased tissue with new tissue."

Israeli Startups Dominate UN Travel Tech Competition - Shoshanna Solomon (Times of Israel)
    Four Israeli travel tech startups are part of a group of 10 from around the world that have reached the final stage of an international competition run by the UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO). 2,771 companies from 132 countries applied for the competition.
    Pruvo is a low-cost hotel booking company that uses an algorithm that claims to guarantee cheaper outcomes. SeeVoov offers a social, interactive, video-based trip planner with videos highlighting dozens of destinations.
    Howazit allows travel suppliers like airlines, hotels, travel agencies, and car rentals to get immediate feedback on any problems their clients encounter. Refundit provides a mobile solution for tourists to receive VAT tax refunds.

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News Resources - North America, Europe, and Asia:
  • UN Peacekeepers Confirm Israeli Report of Tunnel at Lebanon Border
    UN peacekeepers in Lebanon have confirmed the existence of a tunnel discovered by the Israeli military close to the blue line separating the two countries, UNIFIL said in a statement on Thursday. UNIFIL is "engaged with the parties to pursue urgent follow-up action."  (Reuters)
        See also IDF Reveals a Second Hizbullah Tunnel Crossing into Israel, Asks UN to Help Destroy It - Yaniv Kubovich
    Head of IDF Northern Command, Maj.-Gen. Yoel Strick, asked the commander of UNIFIL, Maj.-Gen. Stefano Del Col, on Thursday to assist in neutralizing an attack tunnel being dug from Ramyeh in southern Lebanon into Israeli territory near Moshav Zarit. The army said the rocky terrain near the Lebanese border actually made seismic locating technologies more effective than they were in the sandy terrain near Gaza. (Ha'aretz)
  • UN General Assembly Votes 87-57 to Condemn Hamas
    A majority of UN member states voted in favor of a General Assembly resolution put forward by the U.S. on Thursday condemning the activities of Hamas and other militant groups in Gaza. While 87 voted in favor, 57 voted against, and 33 abstained, the measure was not adopted because, in a procedural vote held before the main vote on the resolution, it was decided to require a two-thirds majority for passage.
        The U.S. Permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador Nikki Haley, said that despite more than 500 General Assembly resolutions condemning Israel, not one condemning Hamas has ever been adopted. She described the two-thirds decision, which passed by just a handful of votes, as "unfair."  (UN News)
        See also Netanyahu Hails UN Hamas Vote
    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday hailed majority backing in the UN General Assembly for a U.S. draft resolution condemning the militant group Hamas. "This is the first time that a majority of countries have voted against Hamas and I commend each of the 87 countries that took a principled stand. I thank the American administration and U.S. ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley for the initiative."  (AFP-France 24)
        See also Remarks on a U.S. Draft UN Resolution to Condemn Hamas Terrorism - Amb. Nikki Haley (U.S. Mission to the UN)
        See also Remarks on a Procedural Vote on a U.S. Draft UN Resolution to Condemn Hamas Terrorism - Amb. Nikki Haley (U.S. Mission to the UN)
  • Amnesty International: Palestinian Woman Tortured in PA Prison
    The Palestinian authorities must urgently investigate the torture and other ill-treatment of Suha Jbara, an activist who has told Amnesty International that she was beaten, slammed against a wall and threatened with sexual violence by her interrogators at the Palestinian Authority's Jericho Interrogation and Detention Center. Jbara is a Palestinian, U.S. and Panamanian citizen and social justice activist. Palestinian forces in the West Bank and Gaza have a track record of arbitrarily arresting peaceful activists, demonstrators and critics.
        Amnesty International is calling on international donors to the Palestinian security sector to review their assistance to Palestinian forces to ensure that it is not facilitating human rights violations. (Amnesty International)
News Resources - Israel and the Mideast:
  • Netanyahu: Hizbullah Tunnels Are Broad - to Infiltrate Several Battalions at Once
    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday met with foreign ambassadors in the north of Israel, close to the IDF units that are working to expose and neutralize the Hizbullah cross-border tunnels. He said, "What Hizbullah wants to do is to have broader tunnels. If you look at the Hamas tunnels, they're very narrow, basically for one person. The Hizbullah tunnels are broad. They enable several people to come at once and also to use motorcycles, I'm pretty sure tractors and so on, in order to bring in many forces, simultaneously, which means several battalions, into our territory, with the purpose of cutting off communities here, towns, kibbutzim, and then going into a campaign of murder and kidnapping, which could happen simultaneously."
        "We decided to act now, before this capacity...would mature and they would have the option to do what I just described....We asked for an urgent convening of the Security Council....We think that Hizbullah should be condemned forcefully and universally on this act of aggression....This is an organization that openly says that their goal is to annihilate the State of Israel. They don't hide it any more than the Iranians do, because of course they're part and parcel of the same effort and the same ideology."  (Prime Minister's Office)
        See also Nasrallah Planned to Shock Israel with Hizbullah Attack Tunnels - Amos Harel
    After years of searching, the army located a vital component of Hizbullah's offensive plans in the north. When Hizbullah chief Hassan Nasrallah began issuing threats about his intention "to conquer the Galilee" in the next war, Israel's military intelligence set about trying to decipher his meaning. After the 2014 Gaza war, Israel realized that Hizbullah was aiming to copy the Hamas model of attack tunnels, in a slightly different form.
        Hizbullah's attack tunnels were fewer in number and shorter, but were designed for the quick and secret transfer of hundreds of fighters into Israel, to lay the groundwork for a wider ground offensive that would immediately follow. A member of the IDF general staff said, "This was the cornerstone of Hizbullah's approach, a move that was supposed to take us by surprise without us knowing what hit us."
        In early 2017, credible information about tunnels on the Lebanon border began to accumulate. The effort to locate the tunnels covered 130 km. of border. In October 2018, IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Gadi Eisenkot traveled to the U.S. and presented the tunnel threat to the American administration for the first time.
        The tunnel found next to Metula was dug from beneath a cement block factory in Kafr Kila in Lebanon. When the army noticed that the factory was not receiving materials but just transporting cargo from the site on trucks, it realized what was really going on there. (Ha'aretz)
  • U.S. Ambassador Friedman: Moving Embassy to Jerusalem Resonated around the World - Herb Keinon
    U.S. Ambassador David Friedman joined Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at a Hannukah candle-lighting ceremony at the Western Wall in Jerusalem on Thursday. Friedman said the U.S. decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital a year ago showed the world that the U.S. "stands with its allies" and "does not flinch from its enemies." The move showed that the U.S. "no longer embraces a policy born of wishful thinking, but rather follows a policy based upon truth."
        "We celebrate the festival of Hannukah, and we celebrate the city of Jerusalem, which under Israeli sovereignty has become - perhaps for the first time in its long history - an open city in which all religions may come to worship in peace."
        Jerusalem Affairs Minister Ze'ev Elkin told the Russian news agency RIA Novosti that Israel is currently in talks with 10 countries about moving their embassies to Jerusalem. (Jerusalem Post)
Global Commentary and Think-Tank Analysis:
  • Refute Palestinian Lies to Promote Mideast Peace - Max Singer
    Despite widespread use of the term, there is no such thing as "occupied Palestinian territory" because there has never been a Palestinian territory to occupy. As some Palestinians point out, they have never had a state of their own. This is far more than a game of semantics. If the land was Palestinian, then Israel could have stolen it. If the land isn't Palestinian, then Israel couldn't have stolen it. It's critical that the U.S. actively combat the falsehood that Israel exists on stolen Palestinian land.
        The Palestinians not only claim that all the land is theirs, they also deny any Jewish connection to it. During the failed Camp David talks in 2000, PA President Yasser Arafat stunned President Clinton by asserting the Jews had no connection to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, the place where the first and second Jewish temples stood. Ancient Israel is a historical fact, founded by King David in the 10th century BCE. Even during the exile there was a continuous small Jewish presence in the Land of Israel.
        The U.S. should demand that Palestinian leaders recognize the Jewish connection to the land, no less than Israelis recognize the Palestinian presence and demand for statehood. The denial of Jewish history leads to the denial of Israel's right to exist. So long as this continues, it is the Palestinians, not the Israelis, who are refusing to accept a two-state solution - and the U.S. should say so.
        The writer, a founder and former president of the Hudson Institute, is a senior fellow of the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies at Bar-Ilan University. (Wall Street Journal)
  • The UN's Delusion - Editorial
    For decades, the UN has repeatedly shown that it thinks it can set its own facts about Israel, history be damned. Last Friday, UN member countries authorized six anti-Israel resolutions in the General Assembly, including writing the Jewish people out of Jerusalem's history.
        Jews prayed and made sacrifices to God on the Temple Mount long before Mohammed was born and the religion of Islam came into existence. For 2,000 years in exile, Jews prayed to return to Jerusalem and to that very temple. Our calendar revolves around holidays that were once pilgrimages to the temple. This week, we celebrate Hannukah, which means "dedication," as in the re-dedication of the temple, after it had been desecrated by the Greeks.
        If longstanding religious tradition is not proof enough, there is a gigantic piece of proof you can't miss when visiting Jerusalem: the Western Wall, which is the supporting wall for the temple that still stands today. (Jerusalem Post)
  • The Lethal Error in Appeasing Iran - Melanie Phillips
    When the Iran nuclear deal was signed in 2015, one of the many reasons offered for that agreement was that it would help the supposedly moderate Iranian President Hassan Rouhani. Addressing the annual Islamic Unity Conference in Tehran last weekend, Rouhani called Israel a "cancerous tumor." Meanwhile Iran's Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khamenei, urged conference participants to "strengthen the Islamic awakening and resistance movement in the region as much as they can, because the only way for the salvation of the region is to spread this spirit and thinking."
        Yet despite this deranged, genocidal call to arms, European governments are still trying to circumvent U.S. policy against Iran. The Europeans' eagerness to continue to trade with Iran is disgusting. The U.S. lists Iran as the world's principal state sponsor of terrorism. The regime has been in a state of self-declared war against the West since it took power in 1979. It regularly denies the Holocaust and re-states its intention to wipe Israel off the map. It should simply be unconscionable to trade with Iran. The writer is a columnist for The Times (UK). (JNS)
  • Stand Down, Rand Paul - Editorial
    Kentucky Senator Rand Paul is a grandstanding obstructionist whose chief joy seems to be blocking the few bills on which there is wide agreement, including two bills intended to benefit the State of Israel. One would authorize $38 billion in security aid to Israel over the next decade, the outcome of a deal negotiated under President Barack Obama. It epitomizes bipartisanship with 72 Senate co-sponsors.
        Paul has since placed a separate hold on another bill meant to punish the anti-Semitic Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement. The legislation merely condones state and local measures that prohibit contracts with individuals and companies that boycott Israel - similar to an executive order that Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin signed a few weeks ago. (Weekly Standard)
  • Egyptian President Sisi's War to Modernize Islam - Amb. Zvi Mazel
    Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi called again in November for a new interpretation of the Islamic narrative to adapt Islam to present times, saying that ills plaguing Muslims today are caused by the misinterpretation of the texts that are the source of Islam. Beginning a few months after his election three years ago, he called for a "revolution" in Islam and reviewing traditional Koranic interpretations that have given birth to al-Qaeda and Islamic State, which have transformed Islam into a vector of mayhem and destruction and turned the rest of the world against it.
        Al Azhar, the highest institution of learning in the Sunni world, did not respond to his call. Its scholars stressed that there was nothing to change or amend in the Sharia (Islamic law). The Egyptian population is deeply religious. In the first elections following the ouster of Mubarak, Muslim Brothers and Salafists garnered 73% of the vote. The president will have to tread carefully. The writer, a fellow of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, is a former Israeli ambassador to Egypt. (Jerusalem Post)
  • American Non-Government Organizations Are Intertwined with the PFLP Palestinian Terror Group - Dr. Omri Weisman
    Two American NGOs - Interfaith Peace-Builders and Dream Defenders - support and promote the mission of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), a U.S.-designated terror organization. The PFLP has used bombings, shootings, and plane hijackings to achieve its political goals.
        Interfaith Peace-Builders (IFPB), also known as "Eyewitness Palestine," claims to have led more than 60 delegations to the Palestinian Authority. IFPB houses its participants in the homes of PFLP terrorist operatives and encourages them to participate in violent demonstrations against Israel.
        Dream Defenders and its members endorsed the PFLP and espoused its tactics by backing PFLP terrorists on social media and at various public events. It brings people to the Middle East to meet with PFLP members and PFLP-affiliated organizations. In March 2016, Dream Defenders put together an alternative school curriculum that includes the PFLP as one of nine "heroes" that should be used to teach "rebellion" strategies and tactics. The writer, a fellow at the Jerusalem Center, participated in several major U.S. lawsuits over the past decade against terror financing. (Institute for Contemporary Affairs-Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)
  • Israel Builds Its Future without a Partner for Peace - Stephen Daisley
    Earlier this month, I visited Israel for the first time as a Zionist of the non-Jewish variety. It truly is an old-new land, where four thousand years of history bumps up against the latest app. Every kind of person, every ethnicity and lifestyle and story is here.
        Israel is supposed to be isolated, shunned by its friends and out-maneuvered by its enemies, and yet in 2018, the U.S. Embassy was moved to Jerusalem, Arab leaders seeking allies against Iran are bombarding Bibi with friend requests, and Israel won the Eurovision Song Contest.
        Israel's every political overture is rebuffed, its "partners for peace" nurture their children on hatred, and the best-paying gig in the Palestinian labor market is killing Israelis. Israelis stopped talking about peace because they have no one to talk to. They keep building their homeland hoping that one day the Palestinians will decide to do the same. The writer is a columnist for the Scottish Daily Mail. (Jewish News-UK)

  • Anti-Semitism

  • Our Common Responsibility to Confront Anti-Semitism - Alan Kadish
    Anti-Semitism has been on the rise in the U.S. over the past few years. Colleges have not done enough to condemn anti-Semitism, often masquerading as legitimate criticism of Israel, and the result has been that behavior and speech that was not and should not be tolerated have become normative. When even the idea that someone cannot serve on a student council because they are Jewish can be openly expressed, we have crossed the line into tolerating and normalizing vile hatred.
        The irrational demonization of Jews that has been part of both the Charlottesville march and the Women's March need to be identified and condemned. The same is true for professors who refuse letters of recommendation for students who wish to study in Israel. There should be zero tolerance for this thinly veiled prejudice.
        Another Holocaust is not in the making. But we do risk a return to the days when anti-Semitism was overt and tolerated, when Jews were subject to violence and murder for simply being Jews, and where discrimination in academia and the workplace was widespread. We cannot allow anti-Semitism to become normative and tolerated. The writer is president of The Touro College & University System. (New York Daily News)
  • The BDS Movement, Where the Anti-Semites Find Room to Flourish - Robert Fulford
    At its most innocent-sounding, the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel is seen as a harmless and probably good-hearted effort to express a critical view of Israel's actions, which sometimes it considers excessive. Yet while considering the BDS movement, we arrive at a crucial question: Who else?
        Who else are you campaigning against? Have the Saudi Arabians awakened your conscience by the fierce battles they are fighting in Yemen? Have you turned against the Russians because of their repeated attempts to absorb Ukraine? Has Syria been added to your agenda? There must be a dozen places where a powerful nation is overcoming a less powerful people. How do you decide which most deserves the force of your disapproval?
        BDS has a foreign policy, but it's limited to one state. I've always suspected that it reflects anti-Semitism, since the people who run it show no interest in the sins of states other than Israel. (National Post-Canada)
  • Sweden and the Jews - Dr. Manfred Gerstenfeld
    Jews in Sweden account for less than 0.2% of the population, but they are the targets of profound hatred. This does not comport very well with Sweden's image as a near-perfect liberal democracy. In Malmo, Sweden's third-largest city, the shrinking community had installed bullet-proof windows at the synagogue. In December 2017, two Palestinians and a Syrian threw Molotov cocktails at a synagogue in Sweden's second-largest city, Gothenburg.
        In recent years, Sweden has taken in the highest number of migrants in Western Europe as a percentage of population. Most immigrants come from Muslim countries where societies are permeated by extreme anti-Semitic prejudices. Sweden can thus be characterized as a major importer of anti-Semites out of humanitarian motives.
        The problems with immigrants have given rise to the growth of a right-wing populist party, the Sweden Democrats. In the September 2017 elections they got 17% of the vote, an unprecedented level of support. This party promotes the prohibition of nonmedical circumcision, aimed primarily against Muslims, but it also serves to introduce a new anti-Semitic element into Sweden.
        The writer, a senior research associate at the BESA Center, is a former chairman of the Steering Committee of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs. (BESA Center for Strategic Studies-Bar-Ilan University)
  • "Anti-Semitism Cover-up" Rocks Sweden's Most Prestigious Hospital - David Stavrou
    A former department head and prominent surgeon at the Karolinska University Hospital in Stockholm allegedly bullied and harassed Jewish doctors working in his department, the Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet reported. A senior Jewish doctor who has worked at Karolinska for almost 20 years who spoke to Ha'aretz says that, together with his Jewish colleagues, he was systematically discriminated against by the department head.
        "The harassment included a series of damaging steps to our careers," such as being denied access to research funds and not being allowed to participate in medical conferences or courses. Jewish organizations say the department head posted anti-Semitic materials online as well. (Ha'aretz)

  • Weekend Features

  • A Holocaust Survivor Tells Her Story on Hannukah - Greer Fay Cashman
    At a Hannukah candle-lighting ceremony that took place at the President's Residence on Monday, Polish-born Holocaust survivor Hannah Weinstein described how for 60 years she had been silent and afraid. "I didn't speak. I was terrified to go from one room to another in case someone was hiding under the bed. I was scared to stand near the window in case there was someone outside waiting to attack me." But she always wanted to be normal "like everyone else."
        As a child, she had spent a year and a half in the ghetto, then three years living like an animal in the forest, wearing the same dress every day, she said. A non-Jewish friend had helped her family and another to escape from the ghetto and hid them in his house.
        But the neighbors noticed that he was buying too much food and came to check him out. First, they shot him and his family, then they turned their guns on the Jews. Weinstein's mother lay on top of her to protect her and was killed. Weinstein was wounded, but lay still as did all the others, pretending to be dead. When the villagers left, the survivors got up and made their way to the forest - three little girls and their father. There was nothing to eat in the forest except leaves.
        When the war was over, the three little girls emerged from the forest and sat by the roadside, waiting for someone to find them. The person who did was Lena Kuchler, who was looking for her family, but found only hungry children on the road or in refugee camps. She became famous as the surrogate mother of a hundred children whom she led walking from Poland to Israel. (Jerusalem Post)
  • Movie Review: "Shoah: Four Sisters" - Ben Kenigsberg
    "Shoah: Four Sisters" by Claude Lanzmann consists of four short features taken from interviews he shot in the 1970s for his landmark film "Shoah" (1985), each showcasing the testimony of a different female Holocaust survivor. The deaths of family members, improbable escapes, the hardship of life in ghettos and camps, underscore the horror and, at times, the grim absurdity of surviving extermination.
        The subject of the segment "The Merry Flea," Ada Lichtman, from Poland, recalls how she was forced to clean dolls taken from Jewish children to prepare them for Germans to give to their own offspring. "It's unbelievable, dressing dolls in a death camp," Lanzmann says to her. She replies, "It's unbelievable being in a death camp."  (New York Times)

  • Canadian legal scholar Dr. Jacques Gauthier notes, "When the League of Nations disappeared, the obligations of the Mandate over Palestine remained in effect. That's highly relevant for the Jewish people. The UN Charter, which is an international agreement binding for all nations, stresses that none of its articles can alter the rights given to any nations before it was ratified. That article was intended to protect the rights to the Land of Israel given to the Jews too. So that article obligates everything that is done in the UN."
  • Therefore, UN Resolution 478 of Aug. 20, 1980, which condemned a law passed three weeks earlier by the Knesset declaring Jerusalem Israel's "complete and united" capital, "is not binding under international law," Gauthier says.
  • At the San Remo Conference in April 1920, "For two days, representatives of the victorious nations discussed what to do with the Ottoman Empire's land....On April 25, they made the decision: Britain, France, Italy, Greece, Belgium, and Japan agreed that the Jews could establish a national home in Palestine."
  • "The most fervent supporter was David Lloyd George of Britain. The French representative asked him why Palestine should be given to the Jews. He responded by pulling out a map that showed the boundaries of the Holy Land in the time of King David and King Solomon."
  • "The rights [to Jerusalem] were given to the Jews at a specific point in history. That is relevant to every negotiation and any future agreement about the status of Jerusalem."
  • "When the UN publishes resolutions referring to 'occupied Palestinian territories,' the term has no validity when it comes to international law, since these territories were never Palestinian."

        See also Video: From the 1917 Balfour Declaration to the Rebirth of Israel in 1948 - Dr. Jacques Gauthier (Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs)
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