Newsletter : 18fx0827.txt
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Arab Knesset Members and Palestinians Jointly Seek to Censure Israel at U.N.
By the Jerusalem Post
Parliamentarians from the Joint List have joined forces with the Palestinian Authority
to seek United Nations censure of the Jewish State, Israel's Ambassador to the UN in New
York Danny Danon charged on Sunday.
"The Palestinian delegation, in cooperation with Knesset members from the Arab parties, is
planning steps aimed at smearing Israel and damaging its image through incitement and
lies," Danon said. He spoke after Joint List MK Aida Touma-Sliman met last week with UN
Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs Rosemary DiCarlo in New York to seek support
for her party's battle against the newly approved Nation-State Law.
The legislation's supporters say that it shores up Israel's identity as a Jewish state,
while its opponents hold that it is racist and discriminates against the country's
minorities. The Palestinian Authority already stated that it is likely to act against
Israel at the UN General Assembly. Among the measures it is weighing is a text that would
call for Israel's ouster from the UN. It is presumed that the US would block such a move
at the UN Security Council, which has final say on the matter.
Danon, however, complained to Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein about the actions of the Arab
parliamentarians, stating that it was part of a wider series of steps they have taken
against the state "In the last two years, we have witnessed close cooperation between
Knesset members and the Palestinian delegation in the UN, whose activities incite and
defame against the State of Israel, and are celebrated on the international stage.
"For example, MK Aida Touma-Sliman participated in a conference marking the 50th
anniversary of the Israeli occupation, and MK Ahmad Tibi participated in an anti-Israel
event of the Palestine Conference on November 29. I find fault with the fact that acting
Knesset members are cooperating with these initiatives and are cynically exploiting their
positions as official representatives of the state to harm it in the international arena,"
Edelstein said that those parliamentarians that were smearing Israel internationally
received salaries and legislative assistance from the state. "Anyone who cooperates with
the Palestinian Authority against Israel should ask themselves whether their rightful
place is in the Palestinian or Israeli parliament," Edelstein said.
Knesset Internal Affairs Committee Chairman MK Yoav Kisch (Likud) asked the House
Committee to amend the parliament's ethical rules to impose harsh penalties on
parliamentarians who act against Israel in the international arena.
Some parliamentarians who oppose the Nation-State Law also severely criticized the Joint
List politicians for seeking United Nations censure of the law. Zionist Union Party head
Avi Gabbay said, "Joint List parliamentarians denigrate our country everywhere, and we
will continue to fight this phenomenon."
He noted, however, that the last person to complain about them should be Prime Minister
Binyamin Netanyahu, "who warmly shook [Palestinian leader Yassi] Arafat's hand, released
1,000 Hamas terrorists, lost to Hamas in Operation Protective Edge and brought [Hamas
leader] Salah al-Arouri to the Gaza Strip."
Twouma-Sliman said that the Nation-State Law "is an apartheid law" that is "reminiscent of
dark and tyrannical regimes," adding that her party has not only a right "but a moral
obligation" to work against such racism and discrimination.
The appeal to the UN was made out of a deep belief that this law is not simply an internal
Israeli affair, but rather has far-reaching negative implications for the State of Israel,
the Palestinian people and any future attempts to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian
conflict, she said.
US Cuts More Than $200 Million in Aid to Palestinians
By VOA News and Israel Hayom
The Trump administration has cut more than $200 million in economic aid to the
Palestinians. Administration officials said Friday the decision was made after a review of
the funding for projects in the West Bank and Gaza to ensure funds are spent by U.S.
national interests and provide value to the U.S. taxpayer.
A senior State Department official said the agency will now direct the funds to
"high-priority projects elsewhere." The official said the decision takes into account the
challenges the international community faces in assisting in Gaza, where "Hamas control
endangers the lives of Gaza's citizens and degrades an already dire humanitarian and
Hamas, the Palestinian Islamist terrorist group that runs Gaza, seized the coastal
territory in 2007 from the internationally recognized Palestinian Authority. That led to
Israel and Egypt placing severe economic restrictions on the region.
Israel says the economic blockade is needed to contain Hamas, a terrorist group that seeks
Israel's destruction. It has greatly harmed Gaza's economy but failed to oust Hamas or
ease the group's hold on power. Hamas, which doesn't recognize Israel, is negotiating
through Egypt to ease the blockade in exchange for a truce to end recent hostilities.
The Trump administration is expected to unveil soon a new policy that will cancel the
Palestinians' demand for "right of return" for its refugees and the refugees status of
most of the Palestinians classed as such by the U.N. Relief and Works Agency, Hadashot
News reported Saturday evening. The report said that the new policy, slated to be
introduced at the beginning of September in a few phases.
First, a U.S. report on the number of Palestinians to be defined as "refugees" will be
published. The report is expected to declare that there are 500,000 refugees,
approximately one-tenth of the UNRWA figure on the number of Palestinian refugees.
The U.S. is also expected to reject the UNRWA definition of refugee status, which is
inherited by the descendants of the Palestinians who left Israel in 1948, inflating the
number of Palestinians classed as refugees worldwide, many of whom have never even seen
the land in Israel or the Palestinian territories where their parents, grandparents, or
great-grandparents lived. The rejection of the UNRWA definition of Palestinian refugeedom
is also slated to include a cut off of funds the U.S. supplies to UNRWA in Judea and
Moreover, according to Hadashot News, the Trump administration plans to ask Israel to
reconsider the mandate it gives the UNRWA to operate in Judea and Samaria, thus ensuring
that Arab countries will not be able to take the place of the U.S. in funding the
organization in those areas.
Last month, some U.S. congressional representatives demanded that the State Department
publicize a report detailing the precise figures on the number of Palestinians who became
refugees in the 1948 War of Independence. Sources who have seen the report say that the
State Department assessed that only 20,000 of the 700,000 Arab refugees who fled Palestine
during the War of Independence are still alive and displaced from their homes. The report
was compiled and classified during the administration of former President Barack Obama.
Palestinian Chairman Mahmoud Abbas' spokesman said Saturday that the U.S. decision to cut
more than $200 million in aid is meant to force the Palestinians to abandon their claim to
Jerusalem. Nabil Abu Rdeneh told The Associated Press the move is part of continuing
political and financial pressure on the Palestinian leadership. He said the Americans must
be fully aware that there will be no peace without East Jerusalem as the capital of a
Palestinian state. The Palestinians were outraged by President Donald Trump's recognition
of Jerusalem as Israel's capital and his moving of the U.S embassy there in May.
One main issue the U.S. has had with support for the Palestinian Authority had been the
stipends paid to the families of Palestinians killed, injured or jailed for attacks on
Israel. Israel and the Trump administration, have repeatedly demanded that those payments
from a so-called ``martyrs' fund'' be halted because they encourage terrorism. Palestinian
President Mahmoud Abbas has refused to do so.
However, several former U.S. officials said that cutting back aid money to the
Palestinians would only strengthen Abbas' more radical rivals in the militant Hamas
movement that rules Gaza. "The U.S. is ceding space to Hamas in Gaza," tweeted Dave
Harden, until recently the USAID director in the Palestinian territories. "No security
professional recommends an aid cut off in Gaza. None."
Lithuania Admits its Citizens Murdered Jews during Holocaust
By Israel Hayom
The government of Lithuania has officially accepted responsibility for the mass murders
of Jews Lithuanian citizens carried out during the Holocaust, according to a document
obtained by Israel Hayom.
The document states that 95% of the Jews in Lithuania at the time of the Holocaust were
killed and called the deaths "a great tragedy for the Lithuanian state and
.It is regrettable that Lithuanian civilians were personally involved in the
mass killings organized by the Nazis," the document reads.
The document was written and disseminated ahead of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's
historic visit to Lithuania last week, the first by an Israeli prime minister, and in
response to criticism by Jewish organizations such as the Simon Wiesenthal Center that
Lithuania sweeps the murder of Jews by its citizens under the rug.
On Friday, Netanyahu and his wife, Sara, participated in a memorial ceremony for the
70,000 Jews of Vilnius who perished during the Holocaust. Lithuanian Prime Minister
Sabulous Skvernelis; Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius; and chairwoman of the
Jewish community in Lithuania Fania Kukliansky were all in attendance.
Speaking at the event, Netanyahu said, "An unpardonable crime was committed here. 70,000
Jews were murdered in cold blood by the Nazis and their collaborators. Altogether, 200,000
Jews were murdered here and in other places in Lithuania.
"Standing here today we remember all those who perished and all that was destroyed.
We also salute the heroism of those Lithuanians who, unlike collaborators, risked their
and they saved many Jews. We will always honor their memory," Netanyahu
Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial Museum archivists have found some 26,000 previously unknown
identification cards belonging to Jewish citizens in the national archives in Kaunas
(Kovno), Lithuania. The cards represent about two-thirds of the Jewish population in the
city before the Second World War. They were found as part of a wide-ranging effort to
locate any documentation of Jewish heritage in the former Soviet Union and Baltic region.
The cards were kept with a collection of all ID cards issued by the local population
authority in Kauna, to Jews and non-Jews, from 1920 to 1940. Each resident received a copy
of their card, while the local authorities kept the original for internal use. The
identification cards contain personal information, including first and last name, father's
name, date of birth, profession, nationality (Lithuanian or Jewish) and a photograph and
signature of the resident.
The cards were moved during the war and returned to the city's archives following
liberation. These new records will provide information about Jews who were killed in the
Holocaust and their stories lost.
Rabbi Denounces WhatsApp: 'Destroying the World'
Yeshivat Kisei Rahamim head Rabbi Meir Mazuz strongly criticized WhatsApp users and said
the app "destroys the world
. One should take things upon oneself for Rosh Hashanah;
for example, to throw away the bad devices. There could be a simple phone that so to speak
is fine, but it has WhatsApp, and this WhatsApp is destroying the world," said Mazuz
during his weekly shiur, as quoted by Hadrei Haredim.
He later spoke of a case where a man from Netivot divorced his wife for someone he met on
the app. "Let him not think that the world is devoid of justice; the world is not devoid
of justice. The children are miserable; one week here, one week there... he tore them up
... So what have we gained from all these devices?" pleaded Mazuz.
"Once people used to be happy ... A person thinks he's 'advanced', they're not advanced,
and they walk in darkness. They tear up their families and their children forever, so you
have to stay away from it. Even a person who requires it for his work should use only the
minimum. If it's possible to do without it - it's preferable. I gain nothing from all
this; I have a phone like my father's fathers did, a phone where you say 'hello?' with no
'voicemail' or anything," he added.
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