Neo-Nazis may seem scarier than Jew-haters on the left, but American Jews need to try to rise above the partisan loyalties that can blind us to both sides of the anti-Semitic coin. Until that happens, liberals and conservatives alike will continue to fail to adequately address a problem that ought to transcend politics, writes JNS.org Opinion Editor Jonathan S. Tobin.
As the political and economic situation in Venezuela deteriorates, Jews are fleeing the South American nation. Inflation has skyrocketed, leading to shortages in food and basic supplies. “There is no value to life right now in Venezuela,” said Adele Tarrab, a Venezuelan Jew who moved to Israel in 2015. “I’ve actually seen people get killed for bread.” During the past year and half, the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews has brought 153 Venezuelan Jews to Israel, providing what the group’s leader called a “lifeline.” At the same time, the immigrants face new challenges in the Jewish state.
Many scholars of anti-Semitism have closely examined the threads that link anti-Semitism with unfulfilled sexual desire. The great paradox that the Jew represents—a racial and political polluter, and yet successful in winning the affections of “Aryan” women—is never resolved, but only exacerbated with words like “bestial” and “lustful” that are soaked in sexual envy. JNS.org columnist Ben Cohen explains the connection between this mindset and the recent white supremacist rally in Charlottesville.
Israel stands to generate large profits from its burgeoning medical cannabis industry after a joint committee of the country’s Health and Finance ministries Aug. 13 approved a measure allowing for international exports of the plant. The state could reportedly earn up to $4 billion annually in revenue from medical cannabis exportation. Saul Kaye, CEO of the iCAN: Israel-Cannabis organization, told JNS.org the Israeli government’s move “will significantly increase investment as well as entrepreneurship” in the cannabis technology sector and that “numerous jobs will be created throughout the country.”
Three days, three attempts to execute Jews by stoning. It’s the continuation of an old tradition in the Middle East. At least 13 Israeli Jews, and two Arabs mistaken for Jews, have been killed by Palestinian rock-throwers since the 1980s. Scores of others have been injured. Palestinian Arabs who throw rocks at Jews are richly rewarded, both financially and through media coverage that makes excuses for their murderous actions, writes JNS.org columnist Stephen M. Flatow.
Seventy future IDF soldiers—more than half of them women—immigrated to Israel from North America this week, arriving on an El Al Airlines flight chartered by the Nefesh B’Nefesh aliyah agency. “I realized that if [IDF soldiers] felt [Israel] was my home, and I felt it was my home, then shouldn’t it be my duty to protect it too?” said Sophie Stillman of Hopkins, Minn., one of the future soldiers arriving on the aliyah flight Aug. 15.
Some 80 students from 13 different countries participated in a high-level training conference that prepares students to make Israel's case to various audiences, including anti-Israel professors and campus activists, many of whom lead the BDS campaign against the Jewish state. "There's a global problem, which is attested this year by the many countries the kids are coming from. But the very good news is the spirit and positive energy of the wonderful students who care about Israel and its cause,” said Andrea Levin, executive director of CAMERA, the conference's organizer.
Several top experts on nuclear proliferation and Iran told JNS.org the failure to successfully deal with North Korea sets a precedent for a similar result with the Islamic Republic. “If a short-term delay causes the international community to be lulled into a false sense that the [nuclear] deal ‘is working,’ as we are hearing lately from deal supporters, it is likely to wake up with a nuclear Iran that will be as firmly entrenched as North Korea,” said Emily Landau, director of the Arms Control and Regional Security Program at Israel’s Institute for National Security Studies.
In Qaraqosh, Iraq, international agencies have repaired a significant amount of the damage done to schools during the Islamic State occupation. Schools are ready to welcome students to the new academic year. But the great challenge is that many Qaraqosh families’ homes still await repair or rebuilding. Iraqi Christians are hoping for a new life marked by peace and stability, but Western powers must make a major contribution to make their aspiration a reality, writes Joop Koopman, communications director for Aid to the Church in Need-U.S.A.
Those who refuse to listen to or to associate with political opponents are at the core of our society’s current political illness, in which we have been divided into two warring camps that have lost the ability to listen to each other. That’s why if you think Dennis Prager must be boycotted or believe Morton Klein is as much of a threat to American Jewry as Islamist terrorists, then don’t bother the rest of us with hypocritical complaints about President Donald Trump, writes JNS.org Opinion Editor Jonathan S. Tobin.
A quadcopter from Gaza landed in Israel earlier this month, and the IDF released a short message, saying a unit had arrived to take it away for checks. The seemingly mundane incident is, in fact, indicative of a growing trend: the use of drones by Israel’s enemies. Hezbollah, Hamas, Islamic State and other radical non-state actors have their own drone programs, each at different stages, and posing different levels of threat. One day, the sight of drones defending the skies against other drones may not be science fiction.
Israeli Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked, a rising star in the Jewish state’s political landscape, was named this month as Forbes Israel’s “Woman of the Year.” Shaked is one of two female Knesset members from her party and one of two women serving on Israel’s ten-member inner security cabinet. At age 41, she portends to help shape Israeli policy for years to come. Shaked gives JNS.org a wide-ranging interview on Israel’s court system, democracy, security and her future.
Two prominent U.S. senators are raising questions about an American-funded school in Ramallah that is running an extremist summer camp for Palestinian teens from around the world, many of them Americans. The controversial summer program, called “Go Palestine,” is run by the Ramallah Friends School, a 148-year-old Quaker institution in the Palestinian Authority’s de facto capital. Its stated mission is to provide Palestinian teens from abroad with “introductions to Palestinian culture, cuisine, life and work, and the Arabic language.” But in addition to traditional summer camp fare, Go Palestine participants are immersed in anti-Israel films and lectures by militants, some with terrorist connections.
David Satterfield, the newly appointed Middle East director at the State Department, has demonstrated that he does not fully appreciate the difference between Palestinian aggressors and Israeli victims, writes JNS.org columnist Stephen M. Flatow.
As the Trump administration ramps up sanctions against Iran, how much of Iran’s sanctions relief from the nuclear deal of 2015 is funding the Islamic Republic’s support for sectarian conflict and terrorism across the Middle East? President Donald Trump last week imposed new sanctions against Iran over its ballistic missile program and human rights violations. The sanctions come amid Iran’s reported fueling of the recent Temple Mount crisis and its agreement to bolster relations with the Hamas terror group.