JNS BRIEFS 6-12-12



Click photo to download. Caption: Outside the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem. Credit: Berthold Werner.Palestinians say Church of Nativity in danger despite no confirmation of ‘imminent threat’

The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) has nominated the Church of the Nativity and the Pilgrimage route in Bethlehem for inclusion in UNESCO’s World Heritage List—which would classify them as under urgent danger and worthy of special protection from the United Nations—despite evidence that those sites do not face such danger.

In advance of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee meeting in St. Petersburg, Russia, from June 24-July 6, the PLO has argued that the “Israeli occupation” has hampered “the supply of appropriate materials” and created an “emergency situation” at the Church of the Nativity and the Pilgrimage route

However, the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), which consults with UNESCO on the heritage list, has said the Church of the Nativity and the Pilgrimage route do not meet the conditions for inclusion on the list because they are not “severely damaged” or “under imminent threat.” ICOMOS noted that in fact, Israeli military authorities conducted the last repairs to the church, to its roof in 1990, and asked that the Palestinian Authority “resubmit the nomination in accordance with normal procedures for nomination.”

—JointMedia News Service

Netanyahu returns to work after soccer injury

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu experienced a few uncomfortable moments on Monday after tearing a tendon in his left foot while playing soccer with Arab and Jewish youths in Jerusalem.

The prime minister underwent a CT scan and had already returned to work on Tuesday, albeit in a cast that he will need to wear for several weeks, Israel Hayom reported.

Netanyahu played in the game as part of an international project promoting Israeli tourism. His office noted that during the game Netanyahu “slipped on the grass, got up, continued to play and scored a goal.” After feeling the pain in his left foot shortly thereafter, his bodyguards whisked him away for medical tests at Jerusalem’s Hadassah University Hospital at Mount Scopus.

The soccer game was being filmed for the American travel show, “The Royal Tour,” where heads of state present their country’s major tourist sites.

—JointMedia News Service

Click photo to download. Caption: David Arquette.27 years late, actor David Arquette celebrates bar mitzvah at Western Wall

Actor David Arquette, 40, star of the “Scream” movie series and occasional professional wrestler, celebrated his bar mitzvah at the Western Wall on Monday, according to reports.

The former husband of “Friends” star Courtney Cox (they recently split) was in Israel to film an episode of "Mile High,” his show on the Travel Channel.

Arquette wore an all-white outfit, read a Torah portion, and donned tefilin, the Associated Press reported, marking his Jewish rite of passage 27 years after most boys do.

“He was very emotional, saying he was happy to be part of the chain of the Jewish people,” said Shmuel Rabinowitz, the rabbi of the Western Wall. “I’m very pleased to see a man who is returning to his roots.”

—JointMedia News Service

U.S. blocks Israel from counterterrorism forum after Turkish pressure

The U.S. blocked Israel from taking part in a Global Counterterrorism Forum (GCTF) meeting in Istanbul June 8 following the strong objection of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Globes reported.

“Our idea with the GCTF was to bring together a limited number of traditional donors, front line states, and emerging powers develop a more robust, yet representative, counterterrorism capacity-building platform,” a State Department spokesman said to explain the U.S. decision to exclude Israel. “A number of our close partners with considerable experience countering and preventing terrorism are not included among the GCTF’s founding members.”

Among the 29 countries that are part of the GCTF this year, 10 have Arab and/or Muslim majorities. Israel was not included despite having some of the most significant counterterrorism experience in the world.

—JointMedia News Service

California county pulls proclamation that recognized ‘Jewish’ Palestinians

California’s Alameda County pulled a proclamation calling for a day to recognize the county’s 20,000 “Palestinian” residents, the Jewish News Weekly of Northern California (.j) reported.

The proclamation, taken off the county’s agenda the same day it was proposed, aimed to call June 5 “Palestinian Cultural Day” and erroneously said Palestinians “profess either a Christian, Jewish or Muslim faith.”

“Our argument was, have this day, celebrate Palestinian culture, but have it under the correct definition of ‘Palestinian,’” said Matt White, campus coordinator for the Israel advocacy group StandWithUs, explaining that word ‘Jewish’ should have been omitted. “I support their right to celebrate Palestinian culture as long as it does not spill over into anti-Israel propaganda.”

Karen Stiller of the local Jewish Community Relations Council, which has opposed San Jose’s “Palestinian Cultural Day” for 10 years, said the so-called cultural celebration has “devolved into a forum to disparage Israel.”

—JointMedia News Service

Click photo to download. Caption: The Powermat charging station for smartphones. Credit: Durcaell Powermat, LLC.Israeli startup unveils 24-hour smartphone charger

Israeli startup Powermat Technologies launched a new 24-hour power transmitter for smartphones.

The “24 Hour Power System,” introduced by the Duracell Powermat, LLC joint venture on Monday, contains a Powermat charging station that plugs into wall outlets. Users then charge their smartphones in the Powermat.

Additionally, through the “Duracell Powermat Portable Backup Battery,” which is small enough to fit in your pocket or purse, users receive one full charge while on the go. The Powermat “knows just the right amount of energy your phone needs and it stops sending power when your phone is fully charged, helping to eliminate energy waste,” according to a press release. 

 “Even while we rely on our [wireless] devices to do so much more, battery power fails to keep pace with our needs...until today,” said Ran Poliakine, CEO of Powermat Technologies. “From now on, mobile will mean truly mobile.”

—JointMedia News Service

Click photo to download. Caption: A recent puppet show for children in East Jerusalem, pictured, was put on to promote non-smoking, but used that as a vehicle to promote anti-Israel sentiment. Credit: PMW.NGOs funded by UN, EU demonize Israel and glorify violence

NGOs funded by the United Nations (NU) and the European Union (EU) recently blamed Israel for the murder of Jerusalem’s youth and glorified Palestinian terrorists.

The Burj Luq-Luq Social Center Society organization—a Palestinian NGOP supported by various branches of the UN, including UNICEF and UNESCO—performed a puppet show for children in East Jerusalem to promote non-smoking. During the show, a puppet said “Jerusalem… needs men who hold machine guns, not cigarettes,” adding that Jerusalem’s youth is “killed by the Jews,” Palestinian Media Watch reported.

Additionally, after Israel transferred the bodies of 91 terrorists to the Palestinian Authority, a Palestinian Authority youth television program called Speak Up said those terrorists are “the greatest role models for us.” Speak Up is co-produced by Palestinian Authority TV and PYALARA, an NGO funded by the EU. 

—JointMedia News Service

Click photo to download. Caption: President Barack Obama. Credit: White House.If poll holds, Obama's Jewish support would at 24-year low for Democratic candidate

A new Gallop poll shows President Barack Obama winning 64 percent of the Jewish vote. If that number holds come November’s election, it would represent a 24-year low in the Jewish vote for a Democratic presidential candidate (Michael Dukakis earned a similar percentage in 1988).

By comparison, Jewish support for Republican candidate Mitt Romney in the Gallop poll is at 29 percent, a 24-year high among Republican candidates if Romney matches that number in the actual presidential election.

 “This poll is another sign of the erosion of support for Obama among Jewish voters,” Republican Jewish Coalition Executive Director Matt Brooks said in a statement. “If the president wins just 64 percent of the Jewish vote, it would be a disaster for him and his party. Jewish voters are increasingly disillusioned with the president and that's why Mitt Romney is making real inroads in the Jewish community this year.”

In 2008, Obama won 78 percent of the Jewish vote.

—JointMedia News Service 

Arab author blames Holocaust on Jews, hopes for recurrence

In a recent column in the Qatari daily Al-Raya, Lebanese author and commentator Jihad Fadhl wrote that Jews will face a second Holocaust due to their treatment of the Palestinians, blaming Jews and their actions for acts of anti-Semitism against them.

“Are the Jews, more than anyone else, responsible for the spread, past and present, of the peoples’ hatred toward them, most recently [in the case of] the Palestinian and Arab peoples? The answer is most likely yes. In other words, the Jews stirred up so-called anti-Semitism— loathing of the Jews to the point of aggression—before anyone else did,” Fadhl wrote, according to The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).

Jews’ “exceedingly immoral behavior toward [Palestinians] gives rise to an immediate reaction that may reach the point of stupidity, crime, and disgrace, such as when Nazism shoved thousands of them into mass crematoria,” Fadhl added.

—JointMedia News Service

Capturing Obama worth 10 camels, Clinton 10 chickens, terrorists say

In an attempt to mock a recent U.S. State Department announcement offering $33 million for seven terrorists from the Al Qaeda-affiliated Al-Shabaab group, Somali terrorists have placed a bounty on the heads of U.S. leaders. President Barack Obama, referred to as “Idiot,” is worth 10 camels dead or alive, and capturing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (the “old woman”) will yield bounty hunters an award of 10 chickens.

According to Israel National News, the State Department had placed a $7 million bounty on the head of Al-Shabaab’s founder and $5 million each for five of his senior aides. “I can assure you that these kind of things will never dissuade us from continuing the holy war against [the U.S.],” said Fuad Muhammad Khalaf of the Shabaab al-Mujahideen Movement in Somalia.

—JointMedia News Service

‘Palestine’ recognized at UN assembly despite Israel and U.S. opposition

Palestinian UN observer Riyad Mansour attended an international assembly at the UN as a representative of “Palestine.” According to Mansour, this is the first time that Palestine has been represented as a state at the UN, after previously being viewed only as an “observer.”

The UN rejected opposition to the recognition of Palestine by Israel and the United States, who are not signatories to the UN international assembly.

At another meeting, developing nations decided to urge the UN Security Council to accept a Palestinian invitation to visit the Palestinian territories.

—Israel Hayom/JointMedia News Service

Case of murder-suicide of Jewish Arizona family develops

While it has not been officially determined as such, police are convinced the case of James Butwin and his family was a carefully planned murder-suicide, the Tucson Citizen reported.

A charred SUV was discovered 35 miles in the desert outside of Phoenix, said to contain the bodies of James Butwin, his wife Yafit Butwin and children Malissa, 16; Daniel, 14; and Matthew, 7. Evidence uncovered in the investigation showed that the Butwins were in divorce proceedings, and James Butwin was battling a brain tumor.

The Butwins were active members of the Jewish community in Tempe, Ariz. “He was totally soft-spoken and a devout Jew. He was very peaceful like that, very even-keeled,” said Steffani Meyers, a lawyer who handled Butwin’s business deals from 2001 until 2007, according to the Tuczon Citizen. “He was like, ‘Oh, it will work itself out.’ I never saw a flash of anger from him.”

JointMedia News Service

Netanyahu: Israel created 250,000 new jobs in 3 years

Click photo to download. Caption: Netanyahu emphasized Israel’s economic growth in recent conference.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the Jewish state has created 250,000 new jobs in the past three years at a special press conference June 8 with Minister of Finance Yuval Steinitz and OECD Secretary General Angel Gurria.

“Israel’s economic performance is better than OECD economies, and among the best in the world…This happened because we've controlled our spending, and not let the deficit balloon, and also because we did not raise taxes too high because we know that we’ll get more tax revenues if tax rates are lower,” he also said, according to Globes.

—JointMedia News Service

After sporting new look, Matisyahu tells fans not to rush to judgment

Click photo to download. Caption: Matisyahu sporting uncharacteristically blonde hair and no beard. Credit: Matisyahu's instagram.

A few days after Jewish reggae star Matisyahu was seen without a kippah in a photo posted on Instagram, the musician on June 6 beseeched fans “that before prescribing judgment to some pictures, please wait and listen to my new record ‘Spark Seeker’ from start to finish.”

Matisyahu, who sported the bushy beard, flat-brimmed black hat, black pants and white shirt worn by Hasidic men, was seen with blond hair and a t-shirt in a new video for his latest single “Sunshine.”

On his website, he attempted to clarify his new look to fans, saying, “There was a time when I felt it was necessary to show the world what I believed in through my physical appearance. I think this can be a wonderful thing, but as my faith has evolved I have come to believe there are many other ways to show my spirituality and Judaism. Ways in which our humanity is emphasized over our differences.”

Israel Hayom/Exclusive to JointMedia News Service

Obama admits PA not interested in peace, blames Netanyahu

Click photo to download. Caption: President Obama admitted Tuesday that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas may no longer be interested in implementing a peace agreement with Israel.

In a speech to Orthodox Jewish leaders on June 5, President Barack Obama said that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian Authority may no longer be interested in successfully implementing a peace agreement with Israel. Either way, Palestinian leadership might just be too politically weak to succeed, Obama said.

Obama emphasized that he understands Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s desire to act without restraints, the Jerusalem Post reported. However, he blamed his administration’s disagreements with the Israeli government on the clash between centrist and right-wing political views.

“The president discussed with the rabbis and lay leaders a variety of issues of mutual concern on issues related to both domestic and foreign policy. The president reiterated his unwavering support for Israel’s security and his commitment to preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons,” a White House official said. 

—JointMedia News Service

Hundreds of Soviet Jews gather in Moldova to celebrate shared heritage

Click photo to download. Caption: 400 young Jews from the FSU are gathering in Chisinau, Moldova for a conference to celebrate their Soviet Jewish heritage.

In a four-day conference organized by Limmud FSU, 400 Jews congregated in Chisinau, Moldova, to celebrate their Soviet-Jewish heritage. Participants included artists, scientists and musicians from Israel, the United States and former Soviet republics, the Associated Press reported.

The event, tagged a “festival of Jewish learning,” included workshops, cultural programs and lectures delivered by prominent scientists, historians and politicians. The conference also included visits by Vlad Filat, Prime Minister of Moldova, and Baron Arthur Cherar, known as “The Gypsy King.” Cherar delivered a lecture on the connected histories of gypsies and Jews, particularly during the Holocaust.

Moldova has a population of over 22,000 Jews, 15,000 of which live in the capital city.

JointMedia News Service

Israel builds huge underground hospital for protection against attacks

The Rambam Medical Center in Haifa has unveiled the world’s largest fortified hospital, intended to protect more than 2,000 patients from missile and rocket attacks. Construction of the Sammy Ofer Northern Regional Underground Emergency Hospital was spurred by missile attacks by Hezbollah and Hamas, particularly during the Second Lebanon War in 2006.

The patients will be housed dozens of meters below ground and will also be protected from chemical and biological weapons. During peaceful times, the underground structure will be used as a parking facility for up to 1,400 vehicles, the Times of Israel reported.

—JointMedia News Service

African refugees in Israel will be transferred to tent city

A few hours after the Jerusalem District Court ruled on June 7 that South Sudanese refugees can be deported back to their home country, the Population, Immigration and Border Authority (PIBA) called on the migrants to leave Israel voluntarily and avoid arrest—within a week from June 8.

The authority stated that no law enforcement measures will be taken against South Sudanese refugees residing in the country should they voluntarily leave within seven days. “The South Sudanese citizens can contact our Unit for Voluntary Departure within the next week, and they will receive assistance,” the authority said in a statement.

Meanwhile, following the court’s decision on June 7, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu convened a meeting over an “Emergency Plan” for refugees, together with Interior Minister Eli Yishai, Public Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch, Justice Minister Yaakov Neeman and representatives of the army, police and Prisons Service. During the meeting, Netanyahu presented four emergency measures that the state will focus on from now on to confront the migrant problem.

Israel Hayom/JointMedia News Service

Turkey doesn’t need Israeli tourists, Erdogan says

Click photo to download. Caption: Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan claims that Turkey needs no Israeli tourists, which until recently made up a significant percentage of Turkey's tourism industry. Credit: Wilson Dias/ABr.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that his country doesn’t need Israeli tourists. Erdogan added that Turkey will not normalize relations with Israel unless the Jewish state apologizes for the deaths of Turkish activists on the Mavi Marmara flotilla, pays compensation to the families of the dead and removes the Gaza blockade.

On May 31, 2010, the IDF sent a team of commandos to stop the flotilla from breaching the internationally sanctioned military naval blockade on the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip. After the Israeli commandos landed on the Mavi Marmara carrying paintball guns, mercenaries on the ship tried to lynch the Israeli soldiers, who pulled out their firearms in self-defense and killed nine Turks on board.

“We have replaced Israeli tourists with other tourists and last year we had 31 million tourists,” Erdogan said. “If and when Israel meets these conditions, then relations can flourish as they did in the past. We will not compromise over these conditions, even if the price is a protracted crisis between the countries,” he added.

This latest rhetoric is another signal that Turkey, which in the past was very friendly with Israel, has elected a government with an increasingly hostile stance toward Israel, as well as increasing support for Palestinians and pro-Palestinian activists. 

—JointMedia News Service

U.S. House committee seeks tribute to Israelis slain at 1972 Olympics

A U.S. House of Representatives panel is urging the International Olympic Committee to pay tribute to 11 Israeli team members killed by Palestinian terrorists at the 1972 Munich Games. The measure asks for a moment of silence at this year’s summer games in London and all future Olympics.

The House Foreign Affairs Committee approved the non-binding resolution by voice vote.

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the killings. Last month, the IOC rejected Israel’s request for a minute of silence at the start of this summer's games in London, saying it had paid tribute to the victims before.

Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, chairwoman of the committee, said the IOC’s refusals were indefensible. She said she recently wrote to IOC President Jacques Rogge urging him to reconsider.

Israel Hayom/JointMedia News Service

Largest ever Jewish Federation merger underway in New Jersey

Two major New Jersey Jewish federations will unite next month as a single organization in the largest-ever federation merger. United Jewish Communities of MetroWest and the Jewish Federation of Central New Jersey are set to become the Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest NJ.

According to NJ.com, the MetroWest federation serves a population of about 90,000 and the Central New Jersey federation serves 35,000. “We can do so much more, allowing us to really expand our fund-raising and philanthropic reach,” said Robert Kuchner, past president of the Central New Jersey federation and chair of its endowment committee.

—JointMedia News Service

Belgian university condemned for recognizing Israel boycott movement

Click photo to download. Caption: In the midst of an upcoming trip to Israel, led by Flemish minister Kris Peeters in order to increase relations between Israeli and Flemish institutions, the Free University of Brussels has recognized the BDS movement as a legitimate student forum. Credit: Michiel Hendryckx.

The president of the Committee of the Coordination of Jewish Organizations in Belgium (CCOJB) denounced the Free University of Brussels (ULB) after it recognized the Boycotts, Divestments and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel as a legitimate student forum. The recognition appeared on the agenda of a recent board meeting and sparked outrage.

“This decision calls ULB’s credibility into question, as it is the sole European institution to have admitted a BDS presence in its walls…Not even Great Britain and Ireland have taken such negative steps,” said Maurice Sosnowski, head of the CCOJB, according to Israel National News.

“The idea of an academic boycott is the worst thing to present itself in a university that wishes to have world-wide appeal. It is even worse considering that (Flemish Minister) Kris Peeters is leading the Vice-Chancellors of Flemish universities in a trip to Israel to prepare for increased bilateral relations (with Israeli institutions). It’s not really the time for ULB to distance itself from its Israel counterparts,” he added. 

—JointMedia News Service 

Pro-Israel candidate loses in New Jersey Democratic primary

After the Democratic primary race between Reps. Steve Rothman and Bill Pascrell in New Jersey morphed into a battle over religion and political views on Israel, Rothman lost the primary election bid June 6.

“The voters have made their choice and we respect their choice,” Rothman said. “I don’t believe I’ll ever run for public office again,” he said, according to NorthJersey.com.

During the campaign, local Arabs attacked Rothman for being Jewish and pro-Israel. Posters even surfaced expressing support for Pascrell and urging the Arab community to elect Pascrell because he is friendly to Arab voters.

Rothman supporters noted that Pascrell signed a 2010 letter criticizing the blockade of the Gaza Strip by Egypt and Israel. Rothman himself is known for helping pass greater funding for Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system. Having won the primary with more than 60 percent of the vote, Pascrell will now face Republican nominee and celebrity author Rabbi Shmuley Boteach.

JointMedia News Service

Need a cab? Fast-growing Israeli start-up will get you one quicker

Click photo to download. Caption: A new app (created by an Israeli company), which will allow users to find taxi cabs in their vicinity, will soon be coming to New York. Credit: Loadmaster (David R. Tribble).

An Israeli start-up that developed an app with the ability to locate the nearest cab has raised $20 million. Company founders will use the proceeds to launch the service in New York.

The company’s service allows people to call cabs directly from their smartphones. The app then automatically locates the closest cab, identifies the driver, and estimates how long it will take the cab to reach the passenger. GetTaxi Israel, run by general manager Motti Hasfari, already operates 350 taxis in Tel Aviv. It launched a London service in October 2011 and a Moscow service in March, Globes reported. 

—JointMedia News Service 



Palestinians refuse to use Israeli companies to build desalination plant for much needed water

Click photo to download. Caption: Hamas and other Palestinian groups have rejected a UNICEF led mission for Israeli firms to build a much needed desalination plant in Gaza. Credit: James Grellier.

The Palestinian Contractors Union, amid similar condemnation from Hamas and other Palestinian civil groups, is threatening to boycott the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) if the agency does not renege on its offer to accept bids from Israeli firms to build a desalination plant in the Gaza Strip.

These threats came in spite of the fact that Gaza has a serious shortage of pure drinking water, the Jerusalem Post reported. The Palestinian Water Authority reported last year that 90 percent of Gaza’s water supply is polluted. Even though a desalination plant would be crucial to the region, and Israel is a leader in the field, Hamas announced that it would not allow any Israelis to enter Gaza. In addition to threatening to boycott, other Palestinian groups warned citizens not to cooperate with Israeli bidders.

“Faced with a choice between promoting their people’s welfare and harming Israel, both the elected Palestinian government and civil-society leaders unhesitatingly chose the latter. And until Palestinians reverse this order of priorities, peace will continue to be impossible,” wrote Commentary Magazine.

—JointMedia News Service



Israeli archeologists find treasure from Bar Kokhba Revolt era

Click photo to download. Caption: A hoard of ancient gold coins, jewels, and other treasures from the Bar Kohkba revolt era has been discovered near Kiryat Gat.

Archaeologists have discovered 140 gold and silver coins, and gold jewelry, from the time of the Bar Kokhba Revolt about 1,880 years ago at a salvage excavation in the vicinity of Kiryat Gat, southern Israel. The Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) presented the find June 5.

The magnificent hoard includes gold jewelry, among them an earring crafted by a jeweler in the shape of a flower, a ring with a precious stone on which there is a seal of a winged-goddess, and two sticks of silver that were probably kohl sticks, according to Israel National News. The treasure was likely hidden by a wealthy woman at the time.

—JointMedia News Service

Netanyahu defeats bill that would have compensated Palestinians for settlement land

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu earned a double victory on June 6: After receiving the legal go-ahead from Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein to move the homes of the Ulpana outpost elsewhere in Beit El, the Knesset voted down the so-called outpost arrangement bill by a landslide majority of 69 MKs to 22 in a preliminary reading, removing the proposal from the government’s agenda. The bill, had it been approved, would have compensated Palestinian owners for land on which Jewish settlements were built, rather than evacuating Jews from those settlements.

The bill came in response to a recent High Court ruling ordering the evacuation of five buildings in the Ulpana neighborhood of the Beit El settlement. The court had ruled that the land was privately owned by a Palestinian and should therefore be restored to the owner. The bill represented a legislative effort to circumvent the court’s decision.

—Israel Hayom/Exclusive to JointMedia News Service

‘Flame’ virus sought Iran’s nuclear blueprints

After the “Flame” computer virus was recently revealed, new information indicates that the virus may have been intended to steal blueprints of Iranian nuclear facilities, according to reports.

The attack targeted about 600 computer systems in Iran, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, Sudan, Saudi Arabia and the Palestinian Authority. The virus caused 185 infections in Iran alone. “They were looking for the designs of mechanical and electrical equipment,” Prof. Alan Woodward, from the University of Surrey, told the BBC.

—JointMedia News Service

Jordanians attack Jews touring a crusader castle with stones and shoes

Click photo to download. Caption: Jewish tourists were attacked by a group of Jordanian Arabs while visiting the crusader castle in Kerak, Jordan on Sunday. Credit: Bernard Gagnon

Jordanian Arabs attacked Jewish tourists June 3 in the city of Kerak, Jordan, because the victims wore clothing that identified them as religious Jews. The Jewish group was visiting a crusader castle, along with other attractions.

“Then the people of the town immediately approached the group, threw shoes and stones, and kicked them out of town… the people of Jordan do not accept the Jews entering their homeland, and the Araba Valley treaty between Jordan and the Zionist entity does not represent us,” said grocery owner Salem Jeradat, according to Israel National News.

—JointMedia News Service

Turkish court will try Israeli officers on Oct. 6

An Istanbul court stated June 4 that it plans to hold an Oct. 6 trial for Israel Defense Forces officers it holds accountable for a raid on a ship that tried to breach the Gaza Strip blockade in 2010. Among those reportedly to be tried are former Chief of General Staff Lt. Gen. (res.) Gabi Ashkenazi and three other senior officers, all of whom were in command positions during the time of the operation.

While it is very unlikely that the Israeli officers would show up for the trial, Israel reportedly offered last month to pay $6 million to the families of those killed in the raid, but the offer was rejected.

On May 31, 2010, the IDF sent a team of commandos to stop the naval flotilla from breaching the internationally sanctioned military naval blockade on the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip. After the Israeli commandos landed on the Mavi Marmara ship carrying paintball guns, mercenaries on the ship tried to lynch the Israeli soldiers, who pulled out their firearms in self-defense and killed nine Turks on board.

Israel Hayom/JointMedia News Service


Posted on June 12, 2012 and filed under Briefs.