Monthly Archives: September 2016

President Shimon Peres 1923 – 2016


Jerusalem, Israel — September 28, 2016 … With tears we confirm the passing of former President, Prime Minister Shimon Peres.

Israel has lost a founding father, a light for peace.

A Condolence Page has been created at

Shimon Peres was one of the founders of the State of Israel, and was instrumental in building and developing Israel’s defense and security industry, establishing the IDF, developing the nuclear reactor in Dimona and the nuclear research facility at Sorek, and heading the Israeli defense industry.

Furthermore, he has worked tirelessly for decades to promote peaceful relations within Israel and between Israel and its neighbors, and was at the forefront of transforming Israel into a technology powerhouse and global leader in innovation. At 93, Peres is a statesman, the Ninth President of the State of Israel, the Prime Minister of Israel, a Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, a man of action, and a man of vision.

Throughout his life, Peres has been dedicated to serving the State of Israel. For more than sixty years he served the country in the highest positions. He was President, Prime Minister, Minister of Defense, Foreign Minister, Finance Minister, Interior Minister, Immigration Minister, Transportation Minister, Communications Minister, Minister of Information, Minister of Regional Cooperation and Development of the Negev and Galilee, and served four times as the Leader of the Opposition.

His public service began at the age of just 24, when he was recruited by Israel’s first Prime Minister, David Ben-Gurion, with the mission of breaking the embargo and arming the military.

He was appointed Director General of the Ministry of Defense at the age of 29, and began secretly developing the nuclear reactors in Dimona and in Sorek, which remain central to the defense and deterrence capabilities of Israel to this day. During this period, together with Ben-Gurion and Moshe Dayan, Peres was one of the initiators of Operation Sinai (Operation Kadesh), entered a military agreement with France and England, and established security relations with Germany, thus bringing in large quantities of weapons to arm the military.

Peres also became the father of Israel’s strategic relationship with France. Following the imposition of a military arms embargo, this relationship allowed Israel to obtain advanced weaponry, acquire vital intelligence and technology, and establish its own defense industries, without which the nation may not have survived. In parallel, Peres was also working to establish the Israeli Air force.

As Minister of Defense in 1976, Peres planned and oversaw the release of Israeli hostages in Operation Entebbe, a military operation that is recognized as one of the most daring and successful of the twentieth century and in the history of Israel. In the days following the abduction, Minister of Defense Peres worked tirelessly on this unprecedented military operation to free the hostages, demonstrating his decisive leadership and emphasizing that, in no way, would he give in to terrorism.

Along with his contribution to strengthening and building Israel’s defense, Peres has worked for decades to promote peace within Israel and between Israel and its neighbors. As Minister of Defense in 1974, Peres conducted the negotiations on the Sinai Interim Agreement with Egypt, and his secret meetings with King Hussein led to the signing of the historic treaty between Israel and Jordan under the government of Yitzhak Rabin.

As Foreign Minister in 1994, Peres laid the foundations for future peace agreements between Israel and the Palestinians. In 1996 Peres founded the Peres Center for Peace to promote peaceful relations and shared-living between Arabs and Jews and Israelis and Palestinians, and in July of 2016 he laid the cornerstone for the establishment of the Israeli Innovation Center at the Peres Center for Peace in Jaffa, together with the Prime Minister and President of Israel.

As Prime Minister (1984-1986), Peres turned Israel’s economy around and saved it from collapse following the worst economic crisis in its history, with a peak inflation of over 400% per year, through his Economic Stabilization Program. Peres believed that it was the right of every Jew in the world to live in Israel. As Prime Minister, he worked to open the gates of the Former Soviet Union and enable the immigration of Soviet Jewry to Israel, oversaw Operation Moses, during which 8,000 Ethiopian Jews were brought to Israel, and pushed for the release of the Prisoners of Zion (a term for Soviet Jews and Refuseniks imprisoned for Zionist activities).

Shimon Peres is among the founders of Israel’s high-tech industry, which has led the country to become the technological powerhouse that it is today – the Startup Nation. As Prime Minister, Peres was the first to recognize the potential of computer software as an export (a decision that laid the foundation for the high-tech industry). Over the years, he has advanced the world’s perception of Israel as a science and technology superpower, and brought about the development of Israel’s scientific research, thus pioneering advancements in important fields such as neuroscience, robotics and nanotechnology.

In 2007 Peres was elected by the Knesset to serve as Israel’s 9th President, becoming the first President to also have served as Prime Minister. During his presidency, Peres was admired and respected for his unprecedented work with Israel’s diverse and multicultural population, as he advocated for strengthening Israeli society, promoted Israel’s international standing, and established institutions to encourage Israeli entrepreneurial and scientific breakthroughs.

These initiatives included: awarding the Presidential Medal of Distinction to Israelis and world leaders who worked for the benefit of the State of Israel, establishing an education program entitled Future Scientists and Inventors, and providing scholarships of excellence to leading researchers.

Around the world, Peres is seen as a visionary leader representing the best of Israel. His work to advance the State of Israel in the world over the years, and to lay the foundation for future peace agreements between Israel and the Palestinians, is appreciated worldwide. His work has been recognized through being presented with the Nobel Peace Prize, as well as receiving medals and honorifics from global, national, and religious leaders the world over.

He was granted honorary citizenship of the Knights of the Franciscan Monastery of Assisi by the Pope, was made a Knight of the Order of St. Michael and St. George by Queen Elizabeth of England, and received the Congressional Gold Medal and the Presidential Medal of Freedom, which was awarded to him by President Barak Obama. Peres was the first and only Israeli head of state to ever receive this honor.

Peres is a man of thought, of conviction, and of strength, an author of poetry and countless books and articles. He was born as Szymon Perski on the 20th of Av, 5674 (August 2, 1923) in the town of Vishnyeva, Belarus (then Poland). He immigrated to Israel in 1934, studied at Balfour and Geula in Tel Aviv, and was then educated in the Ben-Shemen youth village. In 1941 he was sent for training to Kibbutz Geva with a group from Ben-Shemen, and later joined Kibbutz Alumot in the lower Galilee. In the beginning, he worked as a shepherd and a farmer.

He was married to Sonya (nee Gelman) in 1945, and they have three children: Prof. Tsvia Walden – a linguist and professor, Dr. Yonatan Peres – a veterinarian, and Nehemia (Chemi) Peres – a businessman and co-founder of leading Israeli venture capital and technology firms. They have eight grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. His wife, Mrs. Sonya Peres, passed away in 2011.

Message from the Prime Minister’s Office:

“Mossad Director Yossi Cohen, along with the all Mossad personnel, mourns the passing of the ninth President of the State of Israel, Shimon Peres.
For many years, Shimon Peres worked with the Mossad on its operations and work for the security of the State of Israel, and was one of the country’s most prominent leaders. He was a symbol of peace and brotherhood and as such, contributed greatly to building up the security of the State of Israel. May his memory be blessed.”

The Government Press Office (GPO) will operate a media center for the convenience of foreign journalists at the GPO building in the Jerusalem Technology Park (Malha; Building #4, fourth floor). The center will include live broadcasts, background materials (including historical photographs) and photographs from the above three locations and will operate from 08:00 tomorrow morning until the conclusion of the funeral at approximately 13:30 Friday afternoon.

Roads around the Knesset will be closed from tomorrow; the roads around Mt. Herzl are due to be closed from Friday morning until the conclusion of the funeral.

The schedule is as follows:

At 08:45, President Reuven Rivlin, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein will pay their respects before the coffin.

From 09:00-21:00 (or as necessary), the public will be able to pay their respects before the coffin.

Justin Trudeau: Shimon Peres was, above all, a man of peace and a man dedicated to the well-being of the Jewish people.

Over the course of his long and distinguished life, Mr. Peres made enormous contributions to the founding and building of the State of Israel. He was devoted to promoting understanding between his country and its neighbours, and shared a Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts to create peace in the Middle East. Mr. Peres was an internationally-respected statesman and a great friend to Canada. He visited our country often, and helped build relations that remain strong to this day. On behalf of all Canadians, Sophie and I offer our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Mr. Peres – and to the people of Israel. His legacy as a tireless advocate for peace will not be forgotten.

Narendra Modi: “In former President Shimon Peres, we lost a key world leader & a friend of India. Pained by his demise. Our condolences to people of Israel.”

Malcolm Turnbull: Australia mourns the passing of Shimon Peres, his life was as eventful as it was long: his passion for the State of Israel, which he helped found, as strong as his commitment to peace. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace for his efforts in support of the Oslo Accords and for his continued pursuit of peace for Israel with its neighbours.
When Lucy visited Shimon Peres recently, he told her the secret of perpetual youth was to ensure that your list of dreams always remained longer than your list of achievements. On that test, Shimon Peres remained the youngest of leaders.

Federica Mogherini: “I’m heartbroken by the death of President Shimon Peres, a man of peace, and an immense source of inspiration. President Shimon Peres has never lost hope in peace, and has never stopped working to turn hope into reality. Even in the darkest moments his wit, his irony, his obstinate pursuit of dialogue have been a source of inspiration for many around the world, including myself. President Peres believed that the best way to serve the State of Israel and to deliver security to the Israeli people was through peace with the Palestinians. We can only honour his memory with a daily commitment to reconciliation, preserving and advancing his vision for a two-State solution.​”

Tony Blair: “I am more sad than words can express. This is a man who was a political giant, a statesman who will rank as one of the foremost of this era or any era, and someone I loved deeply.
He was an inspiration, a mentor and a friend. His intellect, his way with words that was eloquent beyond description, his command of the world and how it was changing were extraordinary. Though he grew older his spirit never did.
Above all, his commitment to peace and his belief that it was in the interests of the country he adored marked him out as a visionary whose vision was never dimmed or displaced. He saw every setback as a spur to further action and every moment of hope as a sign of what could be done.
The whole world will mourn his passing but his memory will live on to inspire future generations to walk in his path.”

Barbara Streisand: President Shimon Peres was a voice of reason who also happened to have the sensibility of a poet…thoughtful and soft-spoken, but his words echoed loudly around the world. His mind was expansive and his heart was compassionate. He was a brilliant statesman, gifted with the ability to listen to others who did not share his views and still remained determined to find a path forward.

President Obama: “Shimon was the essence of Israel itself—the courage of Israel’s fight for independence, the optimism he shared with his wife Sonya as they helped make the desert bloom, and the perseverance that led him to serve his nation in virtually every position in government across the entire life of the State of Israel. As Americans, we are in his debt because, having worked with every U.S. president since John F. Kennedy, no one did more over so many years as Shimon Peres to build the alliance between our two countries—an unbreakable alliance that today is closer and stronger than it has ever been.”




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Seeking A Taste of America? Check Out Big E 100th Birthday


By Joel Leyden
Israel News Agency

West Springfield, MA — September 27, 2016 … If you are seeking a true taste of Americana – you will find it at the Big E. The Big E, the largest fair in the US Northeast, is now celebrating  100 years of greatness!

The 100 Year Anniversary of The Big E kicked off with Military Appreciation Day, sponsored by the VA New England Healthcare System on the Fair’s opening day, Sept. 16.

Military Appreciation Day is The Big E’s way of saying “thank you” to those who are currently serving or have served in the United States Armed Forces. A military ID was required for free admission.

The VA New England Healthcare System provided information on both national and state veteran resources, including the opportunity to sign up for VA healthcare or to file a service connected disability claim. VA staff members were available to answer questions and assist veterans and their families.

The VA New England Healthcare System is one of 21 Veterans Integrated Service Networks (VISNs) for the VA and is comprised of eight medical centers accredited by Joint Commission located throughout the six New England states. The Big E is proud to extend awareness about VA benefits and services as a thank you to all of our military personnel and veterans.

Opening Day is also “Be A Kid For A Day,” when Fair admission at the gate was only $10 for everyone.

Among the hundreds of  indoor and outdoor displays and exhibits
are the world famous Turkey Legs!


The “Century of Greatness” Centennial Exhibit – open daily in the Young Building.

A new exhibit in the Young Building, “A Century of Greatness,” celebrates The Big E’s 100th anniversary and will take visitors on a historic journey to the past. See the story of Eastern States Exposition retold in photography, memorabilia and artifacts from the past century – from its founding by Joshua L. Brooks in 1916. Browse historic items from the Exposition’s archives, including trophies and ribbons, pennants, advertising vehicles, posters and more, plus letters from former U.S. presidents, Storrowton Village on a small scale and Brooks’ family possessions donated by family members.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony took place at the exhibit on Friday, Sept. 16. The exhibit is open daily in the Young Building from 10am to 10pm.

Check out the Budweiser ClydesdalesThis is your chance to see an American icon – the Budweiser Clydesdales! With horses weighing collectively over 18,000 pounds pulling a circa 1900’s Studebaker wagon, it is quite the display!

Grande Mardi Gras Parade – Every night of the seventeen day fair, get ready to stand your ground to catch colorful beads and dance along to the iconic sounds of the birthplace of jazz -New Orleans!

The Big E takes place Sept. 16 – Oct. 2 in West Springfield, Mass. To stay updated on exciting Fair info, visit, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, or call our info line at 413-205-5115.

Netanyahu Tells UN General Assembly: No Nuclear Weapons For Iran


Edited by Joel Leyden

See Video of Netanyahu UN General Assembly Speech:

United Nations, New York — September 22, 2016 … Following is a transcript of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s remarks today at the United Nations General Assembly in New York:

“Mr. President,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

What I’m about to say is going to shock you: Israel has a bright future at the UN.

Now I know that hearing that from me must surely come as a surprise, because year after year I’ve stood at this very podium and slammed the UN for its obsessive bias against Israel. And the UN deserved every scathing word – for the disgrace of the General Assembly that last year passed 20 resolutions against the democratic State of Israel and a grand total of three resolutions against all the other countries on the planet.

Israel – twenty; rest of the world – three.

And what about the joke called the UN Human Rights Council, which each year condemns Israel more than all the countries of the world combined. As women are being systematically raped, murdered, sold into slavery across the world, which is the only country that the UN’s Commission on Women chose to condemn this year? Yep, you guessed it – Israel. Israel.

Israel where women fly fighter jets, lead major corporations, head universities, preside – twice – over the Supreme Court, and have served as Speaker of the Knesset and Prime Minister.

And this circus continues at UNESCO. UNESCO, the UN body charged with preserving world heritage. Now, this is hard to believe but UNESCO just denied the 4,000 year connection between the Jewish people and its holiest site, the Temple Mount. That’s just as absurd as denying the connection between the Great Wall of China and China.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The UN, begun as a moral force, has become a moral farce. So when it comes to Israel at the UN, you’d probably think nothing will ever change, right? Well think again. You see, everything will change and a lot sooner than you think. The change will happen in this hall, because back home, your governments are rapidly changing their attitudes towards Israel. And sooner or later, that’s going to change the way you vote on Israel at the UN.

More and more nations in Asia, in Africa, in Latin America, more and more nations see Israel as a potent partner – a partner in fighting the terrorism of today, a partner in developing the technology of tomorrow.

Today, Israel has diplomatic relations with over 160 countries.

That’s nearly double the number that we had when I served here as Israel’s ambassador some 30 years ago. And those ties are getting broader and deeper every day. World leaders increasingly appreciate that Israel is a powerful country with one of the best intelligence services on earth. Because of our unmatched experience and proven capabilities in fighting terrorism, many of your governments seek our help in keeping your countries safe.

Many also seek to benefit from Israel’s ingenuity in agriculture, in health, in water, in cyber and in the fusion of big data, connectivity and artificial intelligence – that fusion that is changing our world in every way.

You might consider this: Israel leads the world in recycling wastewater. We recycle about 90 percent of our wastewater. Now, how remarkable is that? Well, given that the next country on the list only recycles about 20 percent of its wastewater, Israel is a global water power. So if you have a thirsty world, and we do, there’s no better ally than Israel.

How about cybersecurity?

That’s an issue that affects everyone. Israel accounts for one-tenth of one percent of the world’s population, yet last year we attracted some 20 percent of the global private investment in cyber security. I want you to digest that number. In cyber, Israel is punching a whopping 200 times above its weight. So Israel is also a global cyber power. If hackers are targeting your banks, your planes, your power grids and just about everything else, Israel can offer indispensable help.

Governments are changing their attitudes towards Israel because they know that Israel can help them protect their peoples, can help them feed them, can help them better their lives.

This summer I had an unbelievable opportunity to see this change so vividly during an unforgettable visit to four African countries. This is the first visit to Africa by an Israeli prime minister in decades. Later today, I’ll be meeting with leaders from 17 African countries. We’ll discuss how Israeli technology can help them in their efforts to transform their countries.


In Africa, things are changing. In China, India, Russia, Japan, attitudes towards Israel have changed as well. These powerful nations know that, despite Israel’s small size, it can make a big difference in many, many areas that are important to them.

But now I’m going to surprise you even more. You see, the biggest change in attitudes towards Israel is taking place elsewhere. It’s taking place in the Arab world. Our peace treaties with Egypt and Jordan continue to be anchors of stability in the volatile Middle East. But I have to tell you this: For the first time in my lifetime, many other states in the region recognize that Israel is not their enemy. They recognize that Israel is their ally. Our common enemies are Iran and ISIS. Our common goals are security, prosperity and peace. I believe that in the years ahead we will work together to achieve these goals, work together openly.

So Israel’s diplomatic relations are undergoing nothing less than a revolution. But in this revolution, we never forget that our most cherished alliance, our deepest friendship is with the United States of America, the most powerful and the most generous nation on earth. Our unbreakable bond with the United States of America transcends parties and politics. It reflects, above all else, the overwhelming support for Israel among the American people, support which is at record highs and for which we are deeply grateful.

The United Nations denounces Israel; the United States supports Israel. And a central pillar of that defense has been America’s consistent support for Israel at the UN. I appreciate President Obama’s commitment to that longstanding US policy. In fact, the only time that the United States cast a UN Security Council veto during the Obama presidency was against an anti-Israel resolution in 2011. As President Obama rightly declared at this podium, peace will not come from statements and resolutions at the United Nations.

I believe the day is not far off when Israel will be able to rely on many, many countries to stand with us at the UN. Slowly but surely, the days when UN ambassadors reflexively condemn Israel, those days are coming to an end.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Today’s automatic majority against Israel at the UN reminds me of the story, the incredible story of Hiroo Onada. Hiroo was a Japanese soldier who was sent to the Philippines in 1944. He lived in the jungle. He scavenged for food. He evaded capture. Eventually he surrendered, but that didn’t happen until 1974, some 30 years after World War II ended. For decades, Hiroo refused to believe the war was over. As Hiroo was hiding in the jungle, Japanese tourists were swimming in pools in American luxury hotels in nearby Manila. Finally, mercifully, Hiroo’s former commanding officer was sent to persuade him to come out of hiding. Only then did Hiroo lay down his arms.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Distinguished delegates from so many lands,

I have one message for you today: Lay down your arms. The war against Israel at the UN is over. Perhaps some of you don’t know it yet, but I am confident that one day in the not too distant future you will also get the message from your president or from your prime minister informing you that the war against Israel at the United Nations has ended. Yes, I know, there might be a storm before the calm. I know there is talk about ganging up on Israel at the UN later this year. Given its history of hostility towards Israel, does anyone really believe that Israel will let the UN determine our security and our vital national interests?

We will not accept any attempt by the UN to dictate terms to Israel. The road to peace runs through Jerusalem and Ramallah, not through New York.

But regardless of what happens in the months ahead, I have total confidence that in the years ahead the revolution in Israel’s standing among the nations will finally penetrate this hall of nations. I have so much confidence, in fact, that I predict that a decade from now an Israeli prime minister will stand right here where I am standing and actually applaud the UN. But I want to ask you: Why do we have to wait a decade? Why keep vilifying Israel?

Perhaps because some of you don’t appreciate that the obsessive bias against Israel is not just a problem for my country, it’s a problem for your countries too. Because if the UN spends so much time condemning the only liberal democracy in the Middle East, it has far less time to address war, disease, poverty, climate change and all the other serious problems that plague the planet.

Are the half million slaughtered Syrians helped by your condemnation of Israel?

The same Israel that has treated thousands of injured Syrians in our hospitals, including a field hospital that I built right along the Golan Heights border with Syria. Are the gays hanging from cranes in Iran helped by your denigration of Israel? That same Israel where gays march proudly in our streets and serve in our parliament, including I’m proud to say in my own Likud party.

Are the starving children in North Korea’s brutal tyranny, are they helped by your demonization of Israel? Israel, whose agricultural know how is feeding the hungry throughout the developing world?

The sooner the UN’s obsession with Israel ends, the better. The better for Israel, the better for your countries, the better for the UN itself.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

If UN habits die hard, Palestinian habits die even harder. President Abbas just attacked from this podium the Balfour Declaration. He’s preparing a lawsuit against Britain for that declaration from 1917. That’s almost 100 years ago – talk about being stuck in the past. The Palestinians may just as well sue Iran for the Cyrus Declaration, which enabled the Jews to rebuild our Temple in Jerusalem 2,500 years ago. Come to think of it, why not a Palestinian class action suit against Abraham for buying that plot of land in Hebron where the fathers and mothers of the Jewish people were buried 4,000 years ago?

You’re not laughing. It’s as absurd as that. To sue the British government for the Balfour Declaration? Is he kidding? And this is taken seriously here?

President Abbas attacked the Balfour Declaration because it recognized the right of the Jewish people to a national home in the land of Israel. When the United Nations supported the establishment of a Jewish state in 1947, it recognized our historical and our moral rights in our homeland and to our homeland. Yet today, nearly 70 years later, the Palestinians still refuse to recognize those rights – not our right to a homeland, not our right to a state, not our right to anything. And this remains the true core of the conflict, the persistent Palestinian refusal to recognize the Jewish state in any boundary. You see, this conflict is not about the settlements. It never was.

The conflict raged for decades before there was a single settlement, when Judea Samaria and Gaza were all in Arab hands. The West Bank and Gaza were in Arab hands and they attacked us again and again and again. And when we uprooted all 21 settlements in Gaza and withdrew from every last inch of Gaza, we didn’t get peace from Gaza – we got thousands of rockets fired at us from Gaza.

This conflict rages because for the Palestinians, the real settlements they’re after are Haifa, Jaffa and Tel Aviv.

Now mind you, the issue of settlements is a real one and it can and must be resolved in final status negotiations. But this conflict has never been about the settlements or about establishing a Palestinian state. It’s always been about the existence of a Jewish state, a Jewish state in any boundary.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Israel is ready, I am ready to negotiate all final status issues but one thing I will never negotiate: Our right to the one and only Jewish state.

Wow, sustained applause for the Prime Minister of Israel in the General Assembly? The change may be coming sooner than I thought.

Had the Palestinians said yes to a Jewish state in 1947, there would have been no war, no refugees and no conflict. And when the Palestinians finally say yes to a Jewish state, we will be able to end this conflict once and for all.

Now here’s the tragedy, because, see, the Palestinians are not only trapped in the past, their leaders are poisoning the future.

I want you to imagine a day in the life of a 13-year-old Palestinian boy, I’ll call him Ali. Ali wakes up before school, he goes to practice with a soccer team named after Dalal Mughrabi, a Palestinian terrorist responsible for the murder of a busload of 37 Israelis. At school, Ali attends an event sponsored by the Palestinian Ministry of Education honoring Baha Alyan, who last year murdered three Israeli civilians. On his walk home, Ali looks up at a towering statue erected just a few weeks ago by the Palestinian Authority to honor Abu Sukar, who detonated a bomb in the center of Jerusalem, killing 15 Israelis.

When Ali gets home, he turns on the TV and sees an interview with a senior Palestinian official, Jibril Rajoub, who says that if he had a nuclear bomb, he’d detonate it over Israel that very day. Ali then turns on the radio and he hears President Abbas’s adviser, Sultan Abu al-Einein, urging Palestinians, here’s a quote, “to slit the throats of Israelis wherever you find them.” Ali checks his Facebook and he sees a recent post by President Abbas’s Fatah Party calling the massacre of 11 Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics a “heroic act”. On YouTube, Ali watches a clip of President Abbas himself saying, “We welcome every drop of blood spilled in Jerusalem.” Direct quote.

Over dinner, Ali asks his mother what would happen if he killed a Jew and went to an Israeli prison? Here’s what she tells him. She tells him he’d be paid thousands of dollars each month by the Palestinian Authority. In fact, she tells him, the more Jews he would kill, the more money he’d get. Oh, and when he gets out of prison, Ali would be guaranteed a job with the Palestinian Authority.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

All this is real. It happens every day, all the time. Sadly, Ali represents hundreds of thousands of Palestinian children who are indoctrinated with hate every moment, every hour.

This is child abuse.

Imagine your child undergoing this brainwashing. Imagine what it takes for a young boy or girl to break free out of this culture of hate. Some do but far too many don’t. How can any of us expect young Palestinians to support peace when their leaders poison their minds against peace?

We in Israel don’t do this. We educate our children for peace. In fact, we recently launched a pilot program, my government did, to make the study of Arabic mandatory for Jewish children so that we can better understand each other, so that we can live together side-by-side in peace.

Of course, like all societies Israel has fringe elements. But it’s our response to those fringe elements, it’s our response to those fringe elements that makes all the difference.

Take the tragic case of Ahmed Dawabsha. I’ll never forget visiting Ahmed in the hospital just hours after he was attacked. A little boy, really a baby, he was badly burned. Ahmed was the victim of a horrible terrorist act perpetrated by Jews. He lay bandaged and unconscious as Israeli doctors worked around the clock to save him.

No words can bring comfort to this boy or to his family. Still, as I stood by his bedside I told his uncle, “This is not our people. This is not our way.” I then ordered extraordinary measures to bring Ahmed’s assailants to justice and today the Jewish citizens of Israel accused of attacking the Dawabsha family are in jail awaiting trial.

Now, for some, this story shows that both sides have their extremists and both sides are equally responsible for this seemingly endless conflict.

But what Ahmed’s story actually proves is the very opposite. It illustrates the profound difference between our two societies, because while Israeli leaders condemn terrorists, all terrorists, Arabs and Jews alike, Palestinian leaders celebrate terrorists. While Israel jails the handful of Jewish terrorists among us, the Palestinians pay thousands of terrorists among them.

So I call on President Abbas: you have a choice to make. You can continue to stoke hatred as you did today or you can finally confront hatred and work with me to establish peace between our two peoples.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I hear the buzz. I know that many of you have given up on peace. But I want you to know – I have not given up on peace. I remain committed to a vision of peace based on two states for two peoples. I believe as never before that changes taking place in the Arab world today offer a unique opportunity to advance that peace.

I commend President el-Sisi of Egypt for his efforts to advance peace and stability in our region. Israel welcomes the spirit of the Arab peace initiative and welcomes a dialogue with Arab states to advance a broader peace. I believe that for that broader peace to be fully achieved the Palestinians have to be part of it. I’m ready to begin negotiations to achieve this today – not tomorrow, not next week, today.

President Abbas spoke here an hour ago. Wouldn’t it be better if instead of speaking past each other we were speaking to one another? President Abbas, instead of railing against Israel at the United Nations in New York, I invite you to speak to the Israeli people at the Knesset in Jerusalem. And I would gladly come to speak to the Palestinian parliament in Ramallah.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

While Israel seeks peace with all our neighbors, we also know that peace has no greater enemy than the forces of militant Islam. The bloody trail of this fanaticism runs through all the continents represented here. It runs through Paris and Nice, Brussels and Baghdad, Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, Minnesota and New York, from Sydney to San Bernardino. So many have suffered its savagery: Christian and Jews, women and gays, Yazidis and Kurds and many, many others.

Yet the heaviest price, the heaviest price of all has been paid by innocent Muslims. Hundreds of thousands unmercifully slaughtered. Millions turned into desperate refugees, tens of millions brutally subjugated. The defeat of militant Islam will thus be a victory for all humanity, but it would especially be a victory for those many Muslims who seek a life without fear, a life of peace, a life of hope.

But to defeat the forces of militant Islam, we must fight them relentlessly. We must fight them in the real world. We must fight them in the virtual world. We must dismantle their networks, disrupt their funding, discredit their ideology. We can defeat them and we will defeat them. Medievalism is no match for modernity. Hope is stronger than hate, freedom mightier than fear.

We can do this.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Israel fights this fateful battle against the forces of militant Islam every day. We keep our borders safe from ISIS, we prevent the smuggling of game-changing weapons to Hezbollah in Lebanon, we thwart Palestinian terror attacks in Judea and Samaria, the West Bank, and we deter missile attacks from Hamas-controlled Gaza.

That’s the same Hamas terror organization that cruelly, unbelievably cruelly refuses to return three of our citizens and the bodies of our fallen soldiers, Oron Shaul and Hadar Goldin. Hadar Goldin’s parents, Leah and Simcha Goldin, are here with us today. They have one request – to bury their beloved son in Israel. All they ask for is one simple thing – to be able to visit the grave of their fallen son Hadar in Israel. Hamas refuses. They couldn’t care less.

I implore you to stand with them, with us, with all that’s decent in our world against the inhumanity of Hamas – all that is indecent and barbaric. Hamas breaks every humanitarian rule in the book, throw the book at them.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The greatest threat to my country, to our region, and ultimately to our world remains the militant Islamic regime of Iran. Iran openly seeks Israel’s annihilation. It threatens countries across the Middle East, it sponsors terror worldwide.

This year, Iran has fired ballistic missiles in direct defiance of Security Council Resolutions. It has expended its aggression in Iraq, in Syria, in Yemen. Iran, the world’s foremost sponsor of terrorism continued to build its global terror network. That terror network now spans five continents.

So my point to you is this: The threat Iran poses to all of us is not behind us, it’s before us. In the coming years, there must be a sustained and united effort to push back against Iran’s aggression and Iran’s terror. With the nuclear constraints on Iran one year closer to being removed, let me be clear: Israel will not allow the terrorist regime in Iran to develop nuclear weapons – not now, not in a decade, not ever.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I stand before you today at a time when Israel’s former president, Shimon Peres, is fighting for his life. Shimon is one of Israel’s founding fathers, one of its boldest statesmen, one of its most respected leaders. I know you will all join me and join all the people of Israel in wishing him refuah shlemah Shimon, a speedy recovery.

I’ve always admired Shimon’s boundless optimism, and like him, I too am filled with hope. I am filled with hope because Israel is capable of defending itself by itself against any threat. I am filled with hope because the valor of our fighting men and women is second to none. I am filled with hope because I know the forces of civilization will ultimately triumph over the forces of terror. I am filled with hope because in the age of innovation, Israel – the innovation nation – is thriving as never before. I am filled with hope because Israel works tirelessly to advance equality and opportunity for all its citizens: Jews, Muslims, Christians, Druze, everyone. And I am filled with hope because despite all the naysayers, I believe that in the years ahead, Israel will forge a lasting peace with all our neighbors.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am hopeful about what Israel can accomplish because I’ve seen what Israel has accomplished. In 1948, the year of Israel’s independence, our population was 800,000. Our main export was oranges. People said then we were too small, too weak, too isolated, too demographically outnumbered to survive, let alone thrive. The skeptics were wrong about Israel then; the skeptics are wrong about Israel now.

Israel’s population has grown tenfold, our economy forty fold. Today our biggest export is technology – Israeli technology, which powers the world’s computers, cellphones, cars and so much more.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The future belongs to those who innovate and this is why the future belongs to countries like Israel. Israel wants to be your partner in seizing that future, so I call on all of you: Cooperate with Israel, embrace Israel, dream with Israel. Dream of the future that we can build together, a future of breathtaking progress, a future of security, prosperity and peace, a future of hope for all humanity, a future where even at the UN, even in this hall, Israel will finally, inevitably, take its rightful place among the nations.

Thank you.”

Jerusalem Post: Trump Is A Racist


By The Jerusalem Post
Josh Solomon in New York and Elaine Moshe in Jerusalem contributed to this report.

New York – Near the end of his debt-ridden ownership of the Plaza Hotel, Donald Trump summoned Abe Foxman to breakfast at its iconic Palm Court. The real estate tycoon had a bone to pick with the Anti-Defamation League.

Foxman, then ADL’s national director, sat waiting for half an hour at the owner’s usual corner table. Trump finally walked in blustering, hand outstretched.

“Mr. Foxman,” he began, “Trump never apologizes.”

Foxman’s colleague, Art Teitelbaum, had recently criticized Trump for his tactics in Palm Beach – a city long marred by discrimination – battling the city council over turning his estate at Mar-a-Lago into a private social club. Trump was accusing the Florida township of antisemitism, claiming that it was opposed to his efforts because his club was going to welcome members of all races and creeds, including Jews and African-Americans.

The ADL’s leadership had seen this phenomenon up close: Teitelbaum and Foxman were in the trenches fighting discrimination in Palm Beach already back in 1964. There was still antisemitism there three decades later, and they expected discrimination to persist. “But that has nothing to do with Trump’s plans to build at Mar-a-Lago,” Teitelbaum told members of the press at the time, suggesting Trump was using Jews as a negotiating ploy.

“Who the f**k is this guy, Teitelbaum?” Trump asked Foxman, according to a version of the 1994 conversation as recalled by the ADL leader. “Abe, it’s antisemitism. All my members will be Jewish.”

“Donald – that’s antisemitism,” Foxman said. “You don’t know who your members will be.”

Trump appeared shocked, and privately backed off his use of the term at Foxman’s explicit request. But Trump apparently did not understand the problem. In his mind, the caste of Jews was complimentary – if still a caste nonetheless.

“To say that only Jews will be members meant that only Jews have money – it was stereotypic,” Foxman recalled in a recent interview. “For him, it may have been an assessment of business opportunities. He’s a shrewd businessman.”

THROUGHOUT MUCH of his adult life and childhood, at seemingly every significant juncture in his business career, Donald J. Trump has surrounded himself with members of a single minority group.

His relationship with the Jewish community offers exceptional insight into the tolerance of a man whose unpredictable presidential campaign has been defined, by many, as one of the most culturally and racially divisive in modern American political history.

Over the course of a months-long investigation of that relationship by The Jerusalem Post – resourcing court documents, media archives and original interviews with campaign aides, close personal confidantes, past lawyers, business partners and employees – both supporters and detractors of the Republican nominee agreed on one critical revelation: Trump seems to have something of an affirmative prejudice toward Jews.

They believe he considers Jews a group of rich, smart, successful and generally powerful deal makers – all traits which Trump himself aspires to, and has sought to emulate, while simultaneously touching on tropes described by historians of the topic as classically antisemitic.

“In some ways, Donald Trump and his relationship with the Jews is the latest chapter in a very long history of ambivalence and dichotomous relations,” Jonathan Sarna, author of American Judaism: A History, said in an interview. “The line between philosemitism and antisemitism is often a difficult one – the line is thin. It’s not bright red. Often you can find within the same person both tendencies, and Trump is a study in that.”

‘Jews are the best tenants’

Trump Village on Coney Island was still an empty plot of sand when Sharon Glaser’s family signed up for an apartment on Fred Trump’s waiting list.

The Glasers were shown a model of what their unit would look like, and offered a list of planned amenities. “We had to put money down,” said Glaser, who moved into the property in 1964 and still lives there to this day. “It was mainly Jewish when we first moved in, but now it’s very mixed.”

The process for securing an apartment wasn’t hard for her Jewish family. “We met the requirements,” she said.

Fred Trump, founder of Trump Management and father and mentor to Donald, was personally involved at this stage of development. In interviews, residents said they would see him around often and that he maintained a good reputation in the community.

But at this point in his life, Fred, born of German immigrants, was publicly peddling a fabricated Swedish past. As has now been acknowledged by the Trump family, he was hiding his German heritage out of fear that it would deter critical Jewish contacts in the New York real estate world, as well as potential Jewish tenants interested in his properties.

And Jewish tenants were his preference.

Documents from a Justice Department discrimination case against Trump launched in 1973 quote one of his rental agents describing a racial code: “Some blacks do live in Trump buildings,” the agent recalled in one March 6, 1974, district court filing, but “Trump Management believes that Jewish tenants are the best tenants.” Another agent was instructed to rent only to “Jews and executives” and to disregard the applications of blacks.

Facing one of the highest profile Fair Housing Act prosecutions in the country, the Trump family retained lawyer Roy Cohn, former chief counsel to Senator Joseph McCarthy during the Red Scare and Jewish himself. Fred and Donald were soliciting members of minority groups through an advertising campaign, Cohn insisted at the time. “We think the [New York] Times is geared to minorities. It supported a Puerto Rican for mayor against a Jew,” he noted.


A report in that very paper puts a young Fred, age 21, at a Ku Klux Klan rally in 1927 (Donald has denied this report refers to his father, but the arrestee’s police record accurately lists Fred’s old address in Queens). Archived newspaper coverage of Klan organizing efforts in New York City from that period records the group claimed itself neither to be “anti-Jewish” nor violent. But “our investigations have led to disclosures which convince us there is a sweeping Bolshevist and Socialist propaganda moving in large areas of the Jewish population,” the city’s Klan chapter head said in 1922, according to a Times article. “We oppose movements of this kind.”

If Fred ever flirted with Klan recruiters, their dalliance appears to have been short-lived, as he proceeded throughout the rest of his life to work extensively with members of the Jewish community. And whatever prejudice Fred may have maintained against “colored” people, he demonstrated a consistent willingness to work with and befriend Jews beyond simply renting to them.

Fred was not the only Trump to allegedly fib about his heritage: Donald’s older brother, Freddy Trump Jr., joined a Jewish fraternity at Lehigh University in 1960, claiming to at least some pledgees that his father was part of the tribe, according to interviews with former fellow classmates. Donald himself kept up the story of his father’s Swedish ancestry until acknowledging German roots to Vanity Fair in 1990.

Sarna said that Christian European immigrants to New York during this time were often torn between what they had in common with their Jewish European brethren, and what appeared to set them apart.

“Ambivalence is the right word,” said Sarna. “On the one hand, lots of German Americans had lots of Jewish friends in this period. And yet they were always different as Jews, and they knew that they were different – and at crucial moments, the two really came to be at loggerheads.”

Fred’s rise in New York real estate was intimately tied to the success of Abraham “Bunny” Lindenbaum, his longtime counsel, and Abe Beame, the first Jewish mayor of New York. Beame and Lindenbaum were old friends, and together worked on the approval of Fred’s cornerstone Coney Island project.

Stuart Oltchick, who knew the Trump family well and met Freddy Jr. in their Jewish fraternity days, said he frequently attended dinners with the Trumps and Sandy Lindenbaum, Bunny’s son.

“You’re not in Dubuque, Iowa, so a good part of what happens in New York City, commercially, is related to Jews,” said Oltchick, who described Donald’s father as a “reserved, well-dressed executive” who came from a “different time” when discrimination was acceptable business practice.

Oltchick told The Post he remained close with Freddy Jr. until his sudden death at age 43 after struggling with alcoholism – an event that has turned Donald off of all substances. He describes their father as less reverential of blue-collar work than Donald expresses himself to be on the campaign trail: “When Freddy became a commercial airline pilot, his father called him a bus driver in the sky,” Oltchick recalled.

Fred donated generously to Beame’s election campaign, despite a conflict of interest later acknowledged by Donald, and to the campaign of Manfred Ohrenstein, majority leader of the New York State Senate and a critical contact for the Trump family on several other projects in proceeding years.

Racial integration at Trump properties was slow even after Cohn reached a settlement with the Justice Department, and Trump Village was still “just about all Jewish” when at least one resident, Charna Kaplan, moved in with her son in the late 1980s, as Donald was already moving on to Manhattan.

Donald came of age during this critical period in his father’s life, and assumed a leading role in Trump Management shortly before facing his first public test: the Justice Department case. He testified in 1974 that he personally handled leases in Brooklyn and Queens, which disproportionately awarded apartments to Jewish applicants. In a short period, he was building on his own, using some of the vital contacts his father had established. The Lindenbaums ultimately helped Donald forge into Manhattan real estate several years later.

The immediate circle around Trump as he entered Manhattan was full of Jewish figures and has remained so consistently ever since.

Donald’s father remained in the outer boroughs and died at Long Island Jewish Medical Center in 1999. Fred has been memorialized there in at least one venue: a Jewish center, built on a plot of land in Sea Breeze he donated to the Orthodox community in an act of apparent goodwill.

“Fred C. Trump, humanitarian,” a 1956 plaque in the Beach Haven building reads, “a sagacious person deserving of every plaudit and tribute given by our community, emphasized more so by the tumultuous age in which we live.”

‘I figured out how to use Jews to my advantage’

The Jerusalem Post first reported on Donald Trump’s presidential ambitions in 1999, when he floated himself as a potential candidate for the Reform Party of Ross Perot, Pat Buchanan and Ralph Nader.

By that time he was publicly known as a brash New York builder, a casino mogul and a twice-divorced tabloid magnet.

Trump kept loyalists around him throughout this period, when he carefully reconstructed the image of his father’s company based on his own personal brand as a shrewd deal maker.

“He surrounds himself oddly enough with Jewish personnel, both then and now: his real estate lawyer is Jewish, his house counsel is Jewish, his controller is Jewish, his chief of staff, chief financial officer, executive vice president, his first executive vice president – I was his litigator for 15 years,” Jay Goldberg, who worked for Trump from 1990 to 2005, said in an interview.

Goldberg navigated Trump through both of his divorces in the 1990s with Ivana Zelníková and Marla Maples. Aware of Fred’s past, Goldberg warned against holding deeds of the father against the son: “No attainder of treason shall work corruption of blood,” he said, quoting the Constitution.

“When we talk about the Jewish community and I really think about it, I can’t think of one Christian person on his senior staff,” said Goldberg, who will vote for Trump in November. “It’s amazing to me. It’s almost prejudice in favor of Jewish people.”

During their divorce proceedings, Ivana reportedly told her friend that Trump would jokingly “Heil Hitler” with his cousin – an allusion to their hushed German heritage – and that he kept a book of Adolf Hitler’s most successful propaganda speeches, titled My New Order, on his bedside. When a Vanity Fair reporter asked Trump to explain this in 1990, he referenced the wrong book. “It was my friend Marty Davis from Paramount who gave me a copy of Mein Kampf, and he’s a Jew,” Trump asserted. The late Hollywood executive was not Jewish.

Several authors made hay of Trump’s star appeal, including John O’Donnell, who wrote a book titled Trumped! that Donald said was generally accurate. One section of the book depicts him openly discriminating against people on the basis of their race, ethnicity and religion.

“I’ve got black accountants at Trump Castle and at Trump Plaza. Black guys counting my money,” Trump said, according to the 1991 biography. “I hate it. The only kind of people I want counting my money are short guys that wear yarmulkes every day.” Trump later denied making that comment.

Only one author spent extensive time with Trump, however, and that was Tony Schwartz, who embedded himself in Trump’s life for 18 months as ghostwriter of The Art of the Deal.

Schwartz would often hear Trump talk about Jews – a group that he quintessentially characterized as shrewd accountants and lawyers, the writer said.

“The way I would describe his perception of Jews is that he thinks of them in very simple and very stereotypical terms,” Schwartz said in an interview. “My feeling was, ‘I figured out how to use Jews to my advantage.’”

Asked whether he ever thought Trump defined him by his affiliation with a group, Schwartz said he felt at the time that Trump thought of him as a “smart hustler Jew” who would probably write a solid book.

“It’s preposterous to think that Donald Trump has a deep personal understanding of or affinity with the Jewish community in the fullest sense of what that means,” Schwartz said. “And the reason I say that is that ‘affinity’ or ‘connection’ or ‘empathy’ or ‘deep understanding’ are not part of his vocabulary.”

Trump raised eyebrows with a Twitter message posted in April of 2013 which suggested that “outing” Daily Show host Jon Stewart as Jewish would indicate his level of intelligence.

“I promise you that I’m much smarter than Jonathan Leibowitz – I mean Jon Stewart, who, by the way, is totally overrated,” Trump tweeted at the time.

But Trump has also given generously to Jewish philanthropic organizations, including the Jewish National Fund and United Jewish Appeal, dating back to his very early career. Many of his donations and event appearances were quite private and went unrewarded – at least with publicity, a commodity Trump values enormously.

Trump often touts his connections to the community and hangs several Jewish awards prominently above his desk in Trump Tower, including JNF’s Tree of Life, awarded to him in 1983 for his fund-raising abilities, according to one longtime board member.

“I’ll have friends of mine come in [who are] Jewish and they’ll see the Tree of Life, and they’ll say, ‘wow, what a great thing,’” Trump told the Washington Post last year. He lost the original award in his move to Mar-a-Lago and personally requested a replacement for his wall in 1997.

“Donald is clearly not an antisemite – he’s just neutral,” said a former senior Trump Organization employee, who requested anonymity due to the sensitivity of the topic. “He’s not a supporter of the community. If it’s to his advantage, then it works for him.”

‘Trump knows where his roots are’

The closest link Donald has to the Jewish community is not his staff, his business partners or his tenants, but his daughter, Ivanka, who converted to Judaism after three years of study in 2009.

Shortly after her engagement to Jared Kushner was announced that year, a friend of the family for over 20 years caught both Donald and Ivanka for a private moment on the sidelines of an important business meeting in Chicago.

Congratulations were offered; and knowing the Kushner family as Modern Orthodox, he asked her: Are you going to convert?

“He didn’t make a grimace in his face or raise his eyebrows or anything,” said Herb Kolben, who later attended their wedding with a “million-dollar” huppa. “Donald told me he was entirely supportive.”

Jared and Ivanka declined requests to be interviewed for this article, as did her conversion rabbi, Haskel Lookstein, who said the Trump experience with Judaism was “a private matter for the family.” But the candidate’s top two advisers on Israel and the Jewish world, David Friedman and Jason Greenblatt, both sat down with The Post to discuss what they described as Trump’s heartfelt, consistent and demonstrable commitment to the community.

“I don’t know where Jewish culture and New York culture begin and end,” said Friedman, who described a candidate with deep New York values. “There’s a lot of overlap there. And there’s a lot of that going on at the Trump Organization – fast talkers, quick thinkers, self-starters, motivated people.”

Friedman’s support for Trump is personal. Donald’s friend and lawyer for fifteen years, he took a genuine liking to his client roughly two years into their relationship, when Friedman’s father died.

In the middle of a blizzard, a ways outside the city, Friedman was sitting shiva when Trump suddenly showed up. Friedman was stunned. Trump was famous, and busy, and didn’t owe him anything.

“He came by, spent about an hour with me,” Friedman said. “We talked about my father and talked about his father – about how much of an influence his father had over him. And you know, there was nobody around. He wasn’t trying to prove anything to anybody.”

Greenblatt, executive vice president and chief legal officer at the Trump Organization, describes a workplace environment where he – and several other Sabbath observers – have been treated with nothing but respect.

“Deep down I think Donald has a Jewish heart,” said Greenblatt, who has attended services with Trump where he would hum along to Aleinu and stand and sit with the flow of ritual. “I wouldn’t say that he isn’t equally fond of non- Jews who share the same work ethic as his own. I think he’s very much an equal opportunity type of person.”

Greenblatt also remembers watching Donald as he listened, seemingly with appreciation, to the religious service at Ivanka’s wedding. Over the course of his capricious presidential campaign, the GOP nominee has discussed his daughter’s Judaism publicly with a sort of pride – as an example of his own personal tolerance, of his commitment to religious freedom, and to the security of Israel.

But at least one avid Trump supporter isn’t buying it.

“I don’t really use the term white nationalism, but I do want to preserve my heritage – just like Jews do,” said David Duke, a prominent white power activist, offering an explanation of why his worldview attracts him to the Trump campaign. “And I think deep down inside, Donald Trump knows where his roots are. He’s concerned about the general heritage of this country. The fact that some of his family is intermarried doesn’t really change that.”

Duke has become emblematic of a type of voter who, until this year, couldn’t find a horse to ride in the quadrennial race for the presidency. In the words of Trump’s rival, Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Rodham Clinton, these voters are in a “basket of deplorables” discriminating against people based on their race, gender, sexual orientation, place of origin and religion.

The sentiment that Clinton spoke of has jolted Jewish voters, who are frequently the targets of white supremacist attacks. Recent polls show Jewish voters supporting Clinton over Trump by over three to one.

“When Trump was asked about antisemitic slurs and death threats coming from his supporters, he refused to condemn them,” Clinton said in a speech on Trump’s relationship with the “alternative Right” movement, also known as the alt-Right, which generally opposes multiculturalism and immigration.

When Trump hired Steve Bannon, former head of the “platform for the alt-Right” website, as his campaign CEO, campaign staff offered no comment when allegations of antisemitism from Bannon’s ex-wife surfaced days later. They were similarly quiet when Trump’s top foreign policy adviser, Joseph Schmitz, was found to be under investigation for trying to purge Jewish employees while at the Pentagon. And when Trump retweeted a graphic image of a six-pointed star pasted on a pile of money accusing Clinton of corruption, he ultimately deleted the post without ever acknowledging any problem with it – even after learning the image originated on a white nationalist website.

Duke rejects efforts to label him a white supremacist and to constantly evoke his past experience with the Ku Klux Klan as a coordinated smear campaign designed by the same “Jewish establishment media” that apparently has it out for his candidate.

Trump adviser Friedman says that Duke’s endorsement has “distressed” the presidential candidate. Indeed, both Trump and his vice presidential running mate, Indiana Governor Mike Pence, have disavowed Duke’s support on several occasions.

“I find it comical that David Duke thinks that he’s aligned with Donald, because Donald stands for everything that I think that David would abhor – tolerance, religious freedom, diversity, equal opportunity. That’s who Donald is,” Greenblatt said of Duke’s commentary for this article. “I think they are worlds apart.”

But Trump’s rhetoric on the campaign trail of late has enthused Duke and his ilk: “Our Christian heritage will be cherished, protected and defended like you’ve never seen before,” Trump told a summit of value voters on September 9.

“It would be very important, wouldn’t it, for a German American gentile to go to Jewish funding drives and charities and to build those relationships in order to navigate a society of Jewish nepotism ,” Duke said, describing the business tactics of Fred and Donald as an “astute” navigation of Jewish sensibilities in a city gripped by “immense” Jewish power. “The Jewish establishment wants massive immigration in this country, an interventionist, it wants gun control – that’s why they hate Donald Trump.”

Kushner has offered few media opportunities despite occupying a critical role in the Trump campaign: he helps run its daily operations, and penned the first teleprompter speech of Donald’s political career, delivered at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) Policy Conference.

But Kushner felt compelled to address accusations of antisemitism against Donald, after the six-pointed star post went viral.

“My father-in-law is not an antisemite,” Kushner wrote in a newspaper column in July. He called Trump a loving and tolerant person whose embrace of his family’s identity has been “unwavering and from the heart.”

Toward the end of an hour-long interview, Duke put himself in Trump’s shoes to comport his perspective with the candidate’s lifelong relationship with the Jewish community.

“ ‘I’m going to be quiet,’” Duke surmised of Trump’s thinking, “’I’m going to gain as much power as I can, and when the time comes, I’m going to do what I can for my people. ‘”

Trump voted in the Republican primaries at Central Synagogue in Midtown. He won the state of New York, but lost Manhattan.

‘Affirmative prejudice’

Trump has made a handful of appeals to the Jewish community since announcing his presidential run, but most of them have resulted in one controversy or another.

“I’m a negotiator like you folks,” Trump said in a speech to the Republican Jewish Coalition in December. Campaign aides said the speech was geared toward business executives (it was not). “Is there anybody that doesn’t renegotiate deals in this room? This room negotiates them – perhaps more than any other room I’ve ever spoken in.”

At a group interview with Jewish reporters four months later, Trump looked around his conference table, saw several “Orthodox faces,” and “summoned some Orthodox Jews of his own to the room,” JTA reported at the time. “I’ve had many, many friends over the years Orthodox, in fact people that work for me,” Trump said. Jared and Ivanka sent their regards.

Friedman doesn’t see anything wrong here.

“If he’s guilty of anything, it’s of observing that Jews have been successful and they’re smart, and they’re engaging – you know?” Friedman said. “Okay, guilty.”

But to cast Jews in positive Trumpian terms – smart, shrewd, deal maker – still amounts to degradation equivalent to the sexist act of calling a woman a 10, said Maurice Samuels, director of Yale University’s Program for the Study of Antisemitism.

“Affirmative prejudice is a good term, and I prefer it to philosemitism,” said Samuels in an interview. “As soon as you begin viewing Jews as a group, either positively or negatively, you’re veering into very problematic territory. It’s a process of ‘othering’ and separating that usually doesn’t end well for Jews.”

The impression that Trump is peddling bigotry vexes his most loyal Jewish friends, many of whom go back with him several decades. Those deeply appreciative of his tolerance for their religious practices in the workplace see him either taking a low road to score votes, or simply not caring enough to take a stand– choosing instead a path that serves his own interests, like an old political hand.

“I think it’s really sad, and disturbing, that he has so many Jews around him,” Schwartz said. “I don’t think it’s good for Jews, because I believe the people he has around him are probably quite smart, and they know who Trump is. Every one of them knows who Trump is. They’ve made some kind of pact with the devil – and I should know because I did this myself – that now threatens the future of civilization.”

Several current and former Trump employees described a man more respectful and understanding of their religiosity than their own families – “pray for me,” Trump would say, entering important negotiations late on Friday nights without critical members of his senior staff. Others portrayed a New Yorker at heart who understands that even Jewish humor includes some off-color, ‘All in the Family’-style jokes from time to time.

Many expressed admiration, and some will vote for him in November. But virtually everyone identified a pattern that strikes at the core of his sensational campaign for president.

In subtle stereotypes of Jews that have long rallied their most impassioned enemies, Trump may see winning virtues: A special group worthy of his praise that has acquired whatever it is he defines as success, paying him forward and the rent on time.

And what greater compliment can Mr. Trump give to a minority than that?

“Part of the problem with Donald Trump is that he seems to stereotype different groups – Muslims, Hispanics, blacks and Jews,” Sarna concluded. “He seems not even to understand that in the era in which we live, that’s precisely what we’re trying to move away from: Group stereotypes and definitions.”

Americans go to the polls on November 8.

“I think one has to ask oneself,” Sarna said, “if they are prepared to vote for president someone who judges individuals based on their group.”


ADL, Israel: Social Media Companies Must Eliminate Growing Online Hate, Terrorism


By Joel Leyden
Israel News Agency

New York — September 7, 2016 … Christopher Wolf, Chair of the Anti-Defamation League’s Task Force on Cyberhate, addressed the U.N. Forum on Global Anti-Semitism. Wolf joined Israeli Ambassador Danny Danon and several other human rights leaders at the UN demanding that the UN and social media companies take immediate action against online racism.

“My name is Christopher Wolf and I thank you for the privilege of participating today in this very important Forum on Global Anti-Semitism.  I am especially pleased to be able to share my thoughts on this panel on Anti-Semitism and Hate Speech on the Internet and in Social Media: Solutions for the Digital Age.

In my capacity as an Internet lawyer and senior lay leader with the Anti-Defamation League, I have been addressing the issue of anti-Semitism and hate speech on the Internet for more than twenty years.  I chair the ADL Task Force on Cyberhate and have served in that role since 1995.

In 2013, I co-authored (with former ADL National Director Abraham Foxman) a book entitled Viral Hate: Containing its Spread on the Internet, a book that surveyed the problem on online hate and proposed solutions consistent with principles of free expression. I have chaired the International Network Against Cyberhate (INACH) and co-chaired (with Israel’s Speaker of the Knesset Yuli Edelstein) the Interparliamentary Coalition for Combatting Anti-Semitism Task Force on Internet Hate, which issued a comprehensive report in 2013 proposing approaches to be taken by government, industry, civil society and individuals.

Through my work combatting online hate and terrorism, I have worked closely with Facebook, Google, Twitter, Microsoft and other companies and I have had the opportunity to work with leading academics and engineers.

Today, I have been asked to focus my remarks on the effectiveness of online codes of conduct enforced by social media companies to eliminate hate and terrorist content and to examine whether there are practical alternatives to the enforcement regimes, such as legal requirements for filtering out unwanted content.

I start by observing that the problem of hate and terrorist content on the Internet is growing.  It is a particular problem on social media platforms.  As Internet usage expands globally, as mobile devices accessing the Internet proliferate and as new variants of social media emerge through Apps, the scope and scale of online anti-Semitism and other forms of hate are expanding greatly.

My experience working with the Internet industry confirms that major social media companies take seriously the problem of online hate and terrorist content online.  Eliminating online hate and terrorist content is a business imperative for these companies.  None of the major companies benefit from hosting such content and the appearance of such content on their platforms harms their business.  Thus, this is not a question of having to convince the companies of the societal need to eliminate online hate and terrorism.

For many years, the major social media companies have cooperated with ADL to analyze and address the problem of online hate and terrorist content.  ADL has convened working groups in Silicon Valley for many years, and ADL’s channels of communication with online companies are robust.   Major social media companies have endorsed ADL’s 2014 “Best Practices” for responding to cyberhate and they have developed standards governing the use of their platforms that forbid online hate and terrorist content.

Social media companies principally address hate and terrorist content through a reporting regime, under which users report content prohibited by the companies’ standards, which triggers review by company personnel.  Anti-Semitic, terroristic and other forms of hate speech are banned by standards set by the online platforms, although definitional differences exist in some cases.

Given the massive volume of content posted to the Internet every minute, and the many different contexts in which such information appears, the only practical way for companies to address content violative of their standards is to rely on individuals bringing such content to their attention. Once the offending content is reported, the companies regularly remove the content and suspend users posting such content.  They have teams of personnel worldwide trained to analyze and address online hate and terrorist speech.

It is virtually impossible for online companies to employ filters or automated blocking tools because the context within which content appears greatly affects whether such content runs afoul of company standards.  An anti-Semite might publish hateful imagery and statements prompting removal under a company’s code of conduct while at the same time a history professor might publish the very same imagery and content in the context of teaching about the prevalence and threats of anti-Semitism.

The latter content, because it appears in the educational context, would not be subject to removal. Thus, laws requiring filters or automated blocking are impractical and in the United States likely would be found unconstitutional as overbroad.

Moreover, my research has found that the law is a limited tool to address hate and terrorist content online and has not proven to be effective outside the United States.  In many cases, prosecutions have prompted glorification and martyrdom for online haters, and their content frequently reappears through other channels, published by like-minded haters.

There has been a failure of cross-border law enforcement and civil actions to produce any meaningful change in the amount and intensity of cyberhate.  Witness the limited effect the hate speech protocol to the 2001 Convention on Cybercrime has had.  The law simply is not an effective tool to deal with the scale of online hate.  New laws attempting to regulate online hate would be difficult to implement and difficult to enforce given the global nature of the Internet, the physical impossibility of monitoring content in real time, fundamental differences in legal systems, and ever-changing technology.

Additional legal regulation of social media companies will almost certainly have a chilling effect on free expression and likely will not be permitted constitutionally in the United States.   In repressive regimes, legal regulation of Internet content ostensibly for the purpose of restricting hate and terrorist speech leads to suppression of legitimate speech because hate and terrorist content is defined in a way that suppresses legitimate dissent.

Even when done for legitimate purposes of combatting online hate and terrorism, because of the importance of context, legal regulation is likely to be overbroad and thus will lead to suppression of legitimate speech and will interfere with free expression of ideas.

As a practical matter, given that the United States remains the hub of global Internet communication and given that the US Constitution forbids most legal regulation of Internet content, and since the law largely is ineffective in addressing online hate and terrorism, the global community would be well-served in continuing to work with social medial companies to address online hate and terrorism.

As the ADL said in its report to the Global Forum on Anti-Semitism in 2015:

To confront cyberhate effectively, the greatest needs today are closer industry cooperation, improved voluntary enforcement of terms of service and community guidelines, greater transparency, simplified mechanisms for users to flag offensive content, and more direct interaction with stakeholders.

In addition, more attention must be given to counter-speech strategies, teaching critical thinking, developing educational materials on cyberhate and raising awareness of the problem.  All of these principles are reflected in the ADL Best Practices [for responding to Cyberhate].

The recommended Best Practices for the Internet industry providers include the following: Providers should take reports about cyberhate seriously, mindful of the fundamental principles of free expression, human dignity, personal safety and respect for the rule of law.

Providers that feature user-generated content should offer users a clear explanation of their approach to evaluating and resolving reports of hateful content, highlighting their relevant terms of service.

Providers should offer user-friendly mechanisms and procedures for reporting hateful content.

Providers should consider creating a specific new terrorism category for users seeking to flag terrorism-related content.

Providers should respond to user reports in a timely manner.

Providers should enforce whatever sanctions their terms of service contemplate in a consistent and fair manner.

Providers should give priority attention to how their platforms are being used by terrorists and terrorist groups to promote terrorism, to recruit potential new terrorists, and to foster self-radicalization.

Providers should make their expertise available to those looking to generate and promote counter-narratives.

Providers should work with interested stakeholders to analyze the impact of counter-narratives in terms of their reach, scope, and effectiveness.

Providers should use their corporate voices to condemn terrorist use of their platforms and to explain why terrorist activity and advocacy is inconsistent with their goals of connecting the world.

Underlying all of the recommendations is the understanding that rules on hate speech may be written and applied too broadly so as to encumber free expression.  Thus, an underlying principle for these recommendations is that care should be taken by online companies to respect free expression and not to encumber legitimate debate and free speech.

Let me conclude by saying that while not every company is in full compliance with every one of the just-mentioned recommendations for best practices in addressing hate and terrorist content online, I can report that the major online platforms are taking great strides to improve their notice and take down activities in accordance with these recommendations.

The ADL’s 2015 Report presented to the Global Forum itemizes the progress and is available online.  Given the absence of viable alternatives, including especially the limited role legal regulation can play, governments and civil society should applaud the efforts of the major online companies and should undertake to work closer with those companies to achieve the mutual goal of eliminating online hate and use of the Internet for terrorism.”


Hatred of Jews and demonization of Israel are at “the highest level of our lifetimes,” Israel’s UN Ambassador  Danny Danon warned on Monday during a high-level forum on antisemitism held by the UN at its headquarters in New York.

“Over one third of European Jews are afraid to wear a yarmulke or Star of David in public,”  Danon said in an address to the UN forum. “More than half of French Jews have considered emigrating because they don’t feel safe living as Jews in France. Today we hear things about Jews and the Jewish people that we thought belonged to the pages of history. Antisemitism is returning to everyday life without shame.”

“In our Internet era, the hatred of Jews has gone global. We are living in a new era and we face a new kind of antisemitism. Using the new tools of social media to demonize the Jewish people and the Jewish state, this is antisemtism 2.0. The enemies of the Jewish people are using the tools of modern technology to target and harass Jews around the world.”

“Make no mistake — attacks against Jews online lead directly to attacks against Jews on the street.”

“We know from history that during times of crisis, people look for scapegoats,” Danon said. “And time and time again that scapegoat has been the Jewish people. So we have to be pro-active, we have to speak out and we have to educate our young people about the dangers of online antisemitism. And we also have to be honest. Talking is not enough. We need immediate and concrete action. Media companies have to take preventative steps.”

Danon went on to call out the UN for the anti-semitism exhibited by a number of its member states.

“There is a place where some are not ashamed to spread lies and slander about Israel and the Jewish people and you are sitting in it right now, here at the UN.”

AIPAC: Obama Allowed Iran To Evade Nuclear Restrictions


By Israel News Agency Staff

New York — September 1, 2016 … The following is a statement from AIPAC on concessions to Iran on JCPOA implementation: “We are deeply troubled by today’s report that Iran was secretly allowed to evade certain restrictions in the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) so that it could begin receiving sanctions relief. If the report is accurate, this unwarranted leniency sets a dangerous precedent concerning adherence to the agreement.

No further concessions should be granted to Iran, and complete transparency related to the deal’s implementation must be provided.

This latest development follows earlier reports that Iran exceeded its quota for heavy water production, and failed to provide the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) with unencumbered access during its investigation into the possible military dimensions (PMD) of Iran’s nuclear program.

Since the agreement was implemented, Iran has continued its malign behavior, to include harassing American military forces, procuring prohibited technology, testing nuclear-capable ballistic missiles, and stoking regional conflicts. The administration and Congress must exercise robust oversight of Iran’s behavior and respond to violations of the JCPOA, U.S. law or United Nations Security Council Resolutions with certain, swift and severe penalties.”

The report, which was released by the Washington-based Institute for Science and International Security, is based on information provided by several officials of governments involved in the Iran Deal.

The administration of President Barack Obama informed Congress of the exemptions on Jan. 16, said the report. The exemptions, which have not been made public, were detailed in confidential documents sent to Capitol Hill that day – after the exemptions had already been granted.

Democratic Senator Robert Menendez, a leading critic of the Iran deal and a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, told Reuters in an email: “I was not aware nor did I receive any briefing on the exemptions.”

As part of the secret concessions that allowed Iran to exceed uranium limits, the joint commission agreed to exempt unknown quantities of 3.5 percent LEU contained in liquid, solid and sludge wastes stored at Iranian nuclear facilities. The agreement restricts Iran to stockpiling only 300 kg of 3.5 percent LEU.

The commission approved a second exemption for an unknown quantity of near 20 percent LEU in “lab contaminant” that was determined to be unrecoverable. The nuclear agreement requires Iran to fabricate all such LEU into research reactor fuel.