Losing patience with Students for Justice in Palestine’s anti-Semitism

It comes as no surprise that a Students for Justice in Palestine-affiliated student, on Aug. 20 at Temple University, shouted anti-Semitic insults and punched a pro-Israel student in the face during an orientation event. SJP historically bullies pro-Israel students and invites vehemently anti-Semitic speakers to campus under the pretenses of “dialogue.” But its activities have done far more than just harass Jewish students. Rather, the group uses its false language of “human rights” and “social justice” to get various student groups to assist its struggle for such causes, writes Elliott Hamilton, a rising senior and pro-Israel student activist at Pitzer College in Claremont, Calif.

Posted on August 22, 2014 and filed under Israel, Opinion, U.S..

The ‘science’ of Israel on campus: CAMERA preps students for upcoming challenges

While Israel has been engaged in a seemingly endless summer war with the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas, pro-Israel students are about to re-enter an increasingly hostile environment for the Jewish state on their college campuses. Just weeks before the start of the 2014-15 school year, 53 pro-Israel student leaders prepared for that challenge by convening in Boston for the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America’s annual Student Leadership and Advocacy Training Conference. “Everyone at the conference got hands-on experience that will be necessary to fight the information battles we face in the coming year,” said Elliott Hamilton, a rising senior at Pitzer College in Claremont, Calif.

Posted on August 21, 2014 and filed under Education, Features, Israel, U.S..

My war story: a new Torah for Sderot

Well-known Jewish radio personality Nachum Segal recounts what he calls a life-altering experience during the Israel-Hamas war: the dedication of a new Torah scroll for an Ethiopian congregation in the rocket-battered Negev city of Sderot.

Posted on August 20, 2014 and filed under Israel, Opinion.

Jews abetting Hamas are no voice for peace

Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) is part of the international NGO “soft power” war, whose unrelenting attacks on Israel’s right to self-defense ultimately aid Hamas terrorism. While JVP states that it is “agnostic” about a two-state solution, its actions demonstrate a clear anti-Israel agenda. When JVP supports the call to “Stand Against Zionism Everywhere”—as it recently did in California—the group stands unmasked as anything but a voice for peace, writes Yitzhak Santis, chief programs officer at Jerusalem-based NGO Monitor.

Posted on August 20, 2014 and filed under Israel, Opinion, U.S..

Did the U.S. raise Hellfire by delaying missile transfer to Israel?

The Obama administration was forced to go on the defensive last week regarding accusations published in The Wall Street Journal that it held back Hellfire-missile transfers to Israel for further review. The WSJ strongly implied that President Barack Obama’s relationship with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was at an all-time low as a result of perceptions among U.S. officials that Israel is not doing enough to end its conflict with Hamas in Gaza. Some pro-Israel observers say they feel betrayed by the reported delay of the Hellfire missiles, regarding the move as the Obama administration breaking its promise not to allow political and diplomatic disagreements to interfere with U.S.-Israel security cooperation.

Posted on August 19, 2014 and filed under Israel, News, U.S..

Uncertain future for U.S. Export-Import Bank, which lends to Israeli companies

For the first time in 80 years, the United States could find itself without an international export credit agency if Congress does not reauthorize the charter of the United States Export-Import Bank, which is set to expire on Sept. 30. A failure to reauthorize the Ex-Im bank by that deadline could have significant financial implications for countries like Israel, which is home to companies accustomed to receiving loans from the bank. 

Posted on August 19, 2014 and filed under Israel, U.S., News.

The student operation to bring Sderot back from the edge

Operation Protective Edge is over, but for residents of Sderot, the beleaguered Negev city that is only a Qassam’s-throw from Gaza, victory is not measured by military gains. The people of Sderot want to win back their city. They want to find a way of restoring its beat and rhythm. Enter the latest initiative by Ayalim, the largest Zionist youth movement in Israel: building a student village in Sderot. Young people are not attracted to Sderot due to the town’s image as a desperate, rocket-strewn wasteland. But Ayalim is hoping to change that.

Posted on August 18, 2014 and filed under Features, Israel.

Defying European anti-Semitism, Hungarian camp points to renewal of Jewish life

The 70-year-old, post-Holocaust taboo of expressing anti-Semitic views started to break down over the last several years in Hungary, where 100,000 Jews live among a population of 1 million. Stoked by the rise of the neo-Nazi political party Jobbik, that flame has been fueled to greater heights during the latest conflict between Israel and Hamas. But roughly 100 miles from Budapest, on a 17-acre patch of land between a forest and a lake in rural Hungary, lies a summer camp that for 25 years has given young Jews from central and eastern Europe the strength to be proud of their religion and to shape their communities.

Posted on August 17, 2014 and filed under Features, Jewish Life, Camps, World.

With Israeli expertise, San Diego going from sea to shining sink

In the early 1990s, San Diego was experiencing serious drought conditions. At that time, the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (MWD) was essentially the area’s only source of water. In 1991, MWD cut San Diego’s supply by 31 percent, prompting the local business community to seek other water sources for the region’s 3 million people. That’s where Israel enters the picture. Starting in November 2015, a desalination plant in Carlsbad, Calif., built and operated by the Israeli company IDE Technologies, will produce 50 million gallons of water per day, accommodating 7-10 percent of the San Diego area’s needs.

Posted on August 17, 2014 and filed under Features, Israel, U.S..

Grand strategy for the Middle East? We don’t know

The horrors of northern Iraq have compelled the Obama administration to both quell its isolationist instincts and to delay the much-vaunted policy “pivot” from the Middle East to East Asia. However much we try, the Middle East will not let us go. And yet we still have no grand strategy for the region, no sense of how we want it to evolve, no doctrine to bring stability to its suffering peoples, writes JNS.org Shillman Analyst Ben Cohen.

Posted on August 17, 2014 and filed under Opinion, U.S., World.

Putting up a shield: Guardian blocks Dershowitz ad on Hamas tactics

The British newspaper The Guardian turned down an advertorial piece penned by famed Harvard Law School professor and pro-Israel advocate Alan Dershowitz. In the ad, whose rejection was first reported by JNS.org on Friday, Dershowitz refutes statements by many media outlets that all of Gaza is densely populated, a claim that has been used to justify the use of human shields by Hamas in its recent conflict with Israel. “The British media is divided,” Dershowitz said. “But The Guardian, which holds itself out to be a purveyor of diverse truth, clearly reflects a bias against Israel on its editorial pages, as well as in its presentation of the news. Now that bias has spread to the advertising pages.”

Posted on August 15, 2014 and filed under News, Israel, World.

Menschkins: Bubbe’s shidduch standards

The 47th installment of Harvey Rachlin's new comic strip, "The Menschkins." See the color version above, and the black and white version below. Click here for an introduction to the series. Click here for more JNS.org coverage on Jewish arts.

Posted on August 15, 2014 and filed under Arts, Menschkins.

Exploiting medicine for the politics of hate

The British medical journal The Lancet unethically politicized medicine when it published “An open letter for the people in Gaza,” providing scientific veneer to condemnation of Israel and its defensive actions by accusing the Jewish state of carrying out a propaganda campaign that “justifies the creation of an emergency to masquerade a massacre.” The article’s authors have no expertise in military law or tactics, nor any evidentiary basis on which to allege that Israel is motivated by a desire to massacre civilians. The article is demonstrative of the “halo effect,” in which NGOs perceived to promote good principles are shielded from scrutiny, writes Eliana Trink, a research intern for the Jerusalem-based watchdog NGO Monitor.

Posted on August 14, 2014 and filed under Israel, Opinion, World.

Rand Paul changes course on Israel funding

Although the 2016 presidential election is still a long way off, prospective candidates are already testing the waters for possible presidential bids—primarily candidates considering running in the currently wide-open Republican race. Thus when Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky), one of the most visible potential contenders in 2016, said that he had never proposed to cut foreign aid to Israel, many in the pro-Israel community took notice.

Posted on August 12, 2014 and filed under Israel, News, U.S., World, Politics.

Exodus to Egypt: 100 years since the Turkish expulsion of the Jews

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the expulsion of thousands of Jews from Turkish-ruled Palestine to Egypt, in a dramatic reversal of the historic exodus from the Land of the Pharaohs to the Land of Israel. But from that tragic episode in 1914 would emerge a Jewish fighting force that would help liberate the Holy Land from the Turks.

Posted on August 7, 2014 and filed under Features, Israel.