• Words count:
    524 words
  • Type of content:
    Update Desk
  • Publication Date:
    April 21, 2024

U.S. President Joe Biden released the following Passover message on Sunday evening ahead of the holiday:

Tomorrow night, Jews around the world will celebrate Passover, recounting their miraculous Exodus story from hundreds of years of enslavement in Egypt and their journey to freedom. This holiday reminds us of a profound and powerful truth: that even in the face of persecution, if we hold on to faith, we shall endure and overcome.
 
As Jews mark Passover with storytelling, songs and rituals, they will also read from the Haggadah how, in every generation, they have been targeted by those who would seek to destroy them. This year, those words carry deeper resonance and pain in the wake of Hamas’s unspeakable evil on Oct. 7—the deadliest day for the Jewish people since the Holocaust.

More than 1,200 people were brutally massacred. Women and girls were subjected to appalling sexual violence. More than 250 innocents were taken hostage, including Americans. We can never forget the horror of Hamas’s despicable atrocities.
 
Jews around the world are still coping with the trauma of that day and its aftermath. This Passover falls particularly hard on hostage families trying to honor the spirit of the holiday—a story centered on freedom—while their loved ones remain in captivity. Our hearts are with all the victims, survivors, families and friends whose loved ones have been killed, taken hostage, wounded, displaced or are in harm’s way.
 
My commitment to the safety of the Jewish people, the security of Israel and its right to exist as an independent Jewish state is ironclad.

My administration is working around the clock to free the hostages, and we will not rest until we bring them home. We are also working to establish an immediate and prolonged ceasefire in Gaza as a part of a deal that releases the hostages and delivers desperately needed humanitarian aid to Palestinian civilians.

We will continue to work toward a two-state solution that provides equal security, prosperity and enduring peace for Israelis and Palestinians.

And we are leading international efforts to ensure Israel can defend itself against Iran and its proxies, including by directing the U.S. military to help defend Israel against Iran’s unprecedented attacks last weekend.
 
The ancient story of persecution against Jews in the Haggadah also reminds us that we must speak out against the alarming surge of antisemitism—in our schools, communities and online. Silence is complicity.

Even in recent days, we’ve seen harassment and calls for violence against Jews. This blatant antisemitism is reprehensible and dangerous—and it has absolutely no place on college campuses, or anywhere in our country.

My administration will continue to speak out and aggressively implement the first-ever National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism, putting the full force of the federal government behind protecting the Jewish community.
 
This year, let us remember the central Passover theme that even in the darkest of times, the promise of God’s protection will give us strength to find hope, resilience and redemption.

To all those celebrating this Festival of Freedom: Jill and I wish you a Happy Passover, Chag Sameach.

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  • Words count:
    163 words
  • Type of content:
    Video Page
  • Byline:
  • Publication Date:
    April 21, 2024

Members of “The Quad” thought last Saturday night “might be the eve of the apocalypse,” referring to the barrage of more than 300 missiles and drones on the night of April 13-14, launched by Iran. They talked about how unbelievable the attack was—less than two weeks before the Jewish holiday of Passover—and spoke of where they were and how they felt watching the sky light up in the worst way.

https://youtu.be/RAcLZpl2rsQ

And they didn’t feel good.

Then they speak with Canadian Yasmine Mohammed, a prominent human-rights activist who grew up in Vancouver. Her father was born in Gaza and her mother was from Cairo; they eventually divorced, and her mother married an operative with Al-Qaeda. Their activities became suddenly restricted as they were steeped into the world of Islamism. Yasmine eventually broke away from that lifestyle and talked about her experiences.

Listen to their stories. And, of course, learn the Scumbags and Heroes of the Week! 

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https://youtu.be/RAcLZpl2rsQ
  • Words count:
    244 words
  • Type of content:
    Update Desk
  • Publication Date:
    April 21, 2024

Criticizing an entire Israel Defense Forces unit "casts a heavy shadow on the actions of the IDF, which operates to protect the citizens of Israel," Yoav Gallant, the Israeli defense minister, stated on Sunday.

"Damage to one battalion affects the entire defense establishment—this is not the right path for partners and friends," Gallant added, ahead of expected U.S. sanctions on the Netzach Yehuda Infantry Battalion.

Netzach Yehuda is an exclusively male, ultra-Orthodox battalion that, until late 2022, served in the Jordan Valley and Samaria. It has faced accusations of abuse, most notably in the case of 78-year-old Palestinian-American Omar As’ad, who in 2022 died after being detained by the battalion.

"Our friends and our enemies are closely watching the ties between Israel and the United States, now more than ever," Gallant stated. "I call on the U.S. administration to withdraw its intention to impose sanctions on the Netzach Yehuda battalion."

On Sunday night, Gallant talked with Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi, chief of the IDF general staff, about "the developing report on U.S. intentions to impose sanctions against the IDF’s 'Netzach Yehuda' battalion," according to the defense minister's office.

"Minister Gallant and Lt. Gen. Halevi discussed various courses of action to prevent this measure from being implemented," it stated. It added that Gallant spoke on the phone with Antony Blinken, the U.S. secretary of state, and talked earlier in the day with Jack Lew, the U.S. ambassador to Israel.

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  • Words count:
    66 words
  • Type of content:
    Video Page
  • Byline:
  • Publication Date:
    April 21, 2024

Israel hit back on April 19 in retaliation for the unprecedented barrage of more than 300 drones and missiles launched by Iran at the Jewish state on the night of April 13-14. It bombed an S-300 air-defense battery near the Natanz nuclear site in the Isfahan province. Is that it, or will Israel respond in kind?

Watch the Caroline Glick Show  “In-Focus!”

https://youtu.be/8hXlK0oWUkg
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https://youtu.be/8hXlK0oWUkg
  • Words count:
    165 words
  • Type of content:
    Update Desk
  • Publication Date:
    April 21, 2024

A White House spokesman commented on Sunday about violent anti-Jewish protests at Columbia University, although U.S. President Joe Biden has yet to issue a statement personally about the antisemitism.

"While every American has the right to peaceful protect, calls for violence and physical intimidation targeting Jewish students and the Jewish community are blatantly antisemitic, unconscionable and dangerous," stated Andrew Bates, the White House deputy press secretary.

"They have absolutely no place on any college campus, or anywhere in the United States of America," Bates added. "Echoing the rhetoric of terrorist organizations, especially in the wake of the worst massacre committed against the Jewish people since the Holocaust, is despicable."

"We condemn these statements in the strongest terms," he said.

Josh Kraushaar, editor-in-chief of Jewish Insider, noted that it was the White House's first public statement about antisemitism since February.

Over the weekend, a campus rabbi said that Jewish students should go home until the university could guarantee their safety.

https://twitter.com/ShelleyGspan/status/1782139757474070721
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  • Words count:
    194 words
  • Type of content:
    Update Desk
  • Publication Date:
    April 21, 2024

The Israeli Prime Minister's Office released a video on Sunday, ahead of the Jewish holiday of Passover, to raise awareness in the United States about the hostages whom Hamas terrorists continue to hold in Gaza.

"All of the various holiday meals around the world are characterized by values of families, closeness and warmth," the office's National Public Diplomacy Directorate stated.

"The 'Empty Chair' campaign draws attention to the absence of our beloved hostages, who have been held by Hamas for 198 days," it added. "The campaign shows festive family gatherings and set tables around the customary holidays in the American tradition. Around the table is an empty chair, that breaks the festive atmosphere and around which the family observes sadly."

"The video ends against the backdrop of a seder night meal with the message that the hostages will not be able to celebrate the Passover holiday with their families, and the call: 'Let our people go,'" it added. "No family in the world should celebrate like this."

The video will run on North American digital platforms and online television, per the Prime Minister's Office.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zpuO2Z1D98k
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zpuO2Z1D98k
  • Words count:
    561 words
  • Type of content:
    Opinion
  • Byline:
  • Publication Date:
    April 21, 2024

Early in the morning of April 14, the Islamic Republic of Iran attacked the State of Israel with the largest swarm of UAVs, ballistic missiles and cruise missiles in history. This attack was unprecedented in scope and size. Incredibly, Israel, with the assistance of the United States, the United Kingdom, France, the Kingdom of Jordan and even the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia eliminated over 99% of the missiles and UAVs launched.

Iran’s attack had the potential to kill thousands of innocent Israeli civilians. But it did not. Had the well-coordinated defense been anything less than perfect, the outcome would have been horrific and the resulting chain reaction could have immediately sparked World War III.

The reason the attack failed is because on Jan. 15, 2021, then-President Donald Trump moved the State of Israel from the responsibility of the U.S. military’s European Command (EUCOM) to Central Command (CENTCOM).

The U.S. divides the world into various areas of military responsibility. Israel was under the responsibility of EUCOM even though Israel is in the Middle East and thus obviously should have been under CENTCOM. In this case, U.S. policy was working against our own interests. For decades, the U.S. had sacrificed military efficiency and efficacy to avoid tensions with countries that were uncomfortable with having Israel at the table.

Trump, however, understood the power and responsibility of the U.S. As leader of the free world, you must tell the truth, even or especially when it might be hard for others to hear.

Trump told these hard truths during his first international trip in 2017. He told assembled leaders of Arab and Muslim countries that radical Islam is a global problem and they should fix it. If they didn’t, he would. Those countries then worked together to slow down funding to radical Islam and to defeat ISIS.

After he met with those leaders, Trump flew directly from Saudi Arabia to Israel. He was told that he could not do so because Israel and Saudi Arabia do not have diplomatic relations. Trump ignored this and directed Air Force One to fly directly between the two countries because the U.S. has relations with both. He refused to pander to narratives that were not in America’s interest.

Trump recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel because the 1996 Jerusalem Embassy Act demanded that the president do so and because it is the capital of Israel. He moved the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem and recognized Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights.

Any U.S. president over the past 30 years could have taken those actions but they did not. They did not because they prioritized other countries’ interests above our own. After brokering five peace deals—known as the Abraham Accords—in 123 days, Trump switched Israel to CENTCOM. Trump’s decision finally and permanently integrated Israel into America’s Middle East command structure. Everyone knew this was important but no one was willing to say it out loud.

Three years later, during Iran’s assault, the U.S., Israel, the U.K., France, Jordan, the UAE and Saudi Arabia all played a role in one of the most important aerial defense operations in human history. This operation was only possible because of Israel’s integration into CENTCOM. It saved thousands of lives. Just don’t tell anyone it was Donald Trump who made it happen.

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  • Words count:
    456 words
  • Type of content:
    Opinion
  • Byline:
  • Publication Date:
    April 21, 2024

Ceasefire, it is claimed, is the call of doves cooing for peace and the end of conflict. There are ceasefire advocates who are sickened by the horrific costs of war. They genuinely desire an end of hostility and a peaceful coexistence. Yet many of the apparent doves are vultures in disguise. Peace is not their aim but only the cessation of the force that will deprive terrorists of the opportunity to rape and murder innocents.

Today, Hamas and its allies lead the ceasefire cries; not because they care for the lives of the civilians behind whom they cravenly hide. They want the fire to cease so they can crawl out of their holes and reopen fire. The chorus of ceasefire voices is music to their ears. The Western liberals they disdain are singing their song. The terrorists revel in the irony of the fact that their future “infidel” victims are working to tie the hands of the only ones who are fighting and dying to defend those “infidels.”

Those who truly desire peace must come to understand that a ceasefire is not the way to achieve it. Sometimes the only way to secure a durable accord is by eliminating those who refuse to coexist.

The proper call of the moment is not ceasefire, but peacefire. Peacefire is the sober recognition that peace is sometimes attained only through force. This is particularly the case in parts of the world where the values of Western liberalism are not embraced. This is not a pretty fact, but it is the tragic but true nature of a brutal reality.

Those who cherish peace do not celebrate the death of their foes. They do not distribute candies when civilians are killed. They do not parade the lifeless bodies of innocent women who have been murdered in cold blood. They do not glorify battle. They fight only when they have to in order to ensure that future generations will not have to.

Nonviolence, diplomacy and reconciliation should be pursued at all times. But there are instances when the greater good will be served not by halting the fight but by finishing it. Lives will be saved on both sides when those who incite holy war, indoctrinate supremacy and glorify death are defeated and defanged.

A true warrior is not one who enjoys battle or violence but one who is willing to fight and risk his or her life to protect the innocent. It is not courage to refuse to combat evil. It is cowardice to allow murderers to survive to kill more innocents in the future.

As we pray daily for peace, we know that we must protect our children when the murderers come to violate, mutilate and kidnap them.

Peacefire now!

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  • Words count:
    553 words
  • Type of content:
    Update Desk
  • Byline:
  • Publication Date:
    April 21, 2024

Serene Varghese, whose husband Sachin Varghese is general counsel for the Democratic Party of Georgia, appeared to call for the death of the party's chair—a U.S. congresswoman—on Saturday after the latter voted for Israel funding.

"Have you thought about booking a Boeing 737 for your next flight to Atlanta?" she wrote in response to a post from Rep. Nikema Williams (D-Ga.) about voting for a package that included funding for Israel. "I highly recommend."

Some Boeing 737 aircraft have been grounded this year following safety issues, and "Boeing now faces renewed questions over its ability to meet quality and safety standards," NPR reported last month.

"Why would you like her to take a Boeing 737? So it crashes or parts come off while she’s in flight?" responded Esther Panitch, a Georgia state representative and the only Jewish member of the state legislature. "What is wrong with you?"

Panitch added that she is "so disturbed" by Varghese's "wish for death/injury of Rep. Williams. Serene is the wife of the general counsel for the Democratic Party in Georgia."

Varghese doubled down when others pointed out that she was threatening a congresswoman's safety.

"Just in case you haven’t heard, Boeing 737s are the most sold planes in history and still actively flying every day," she wrote to one person. "Google is such an amazing resource."

"Sorry I must’ve missed that when I was mourning the loss of entire branches of my family that have been killed off in Gaza," she said in another response. "But surely, our congresswoman isn’t responsible for funding Israel."

She added in a post, in which she used an obscene misogynistic term, that "to be fair, I am definitely guilty of calling her a [expletive] and a terrible human being and a garbage human."

When someone tagged the FBI, Varghese responded, "Yes. Please call the FBI, so they can attend to urgent matters like recommending the most sold aircraft ever that is still actively used today. It's a Zionist emergency."

In response to somone's post about her husband, Varghese wrote, "It is not a secret. My husband is the general counsel to the Democratic Party of Georgia. And his deputy general council is a proud Zionist whose wife works for AIPAC. What a beautiful melting pot."

To Panitch, who told her that she is not well, Varghese wrote, "Y’all this is so sweet. Even though we don’t agree on the Israel and Palestine conflict, she’s concerned about me. A reminder for all of us suffering with mental health issues that there is no stigma in getting help."

She added, "I am disturbed by Rep. Esther Panitch's face, and I wouldn’t have said anything, but she started it."

"Rep. Nikema Williams is a sitting U.S. congresswoman, and chair of the Georgia Democratic Party, who voted to help Israel and provide needed humanitarian assistance, so she should not face a death wish by anyone, let alone from a member of her own party," Panitch told JNS.

"We would never tolerate this from far-right Republicans," the state representative added. "We can never normalize this from the far-left Democrats. I support Nikema and hope that Georgia’s Jews on both sides do so as well."

JNS sought comment from the congresswoman and the state's Democratic Party.

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