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FBI Warned of Poway Shooter 5 Minutes Before Attack

By & Reuters
The FBI revealed on Monday that it had received a warning about the Poway synagogue shooter five minutes before he carried out a deadly shooting attack. On Saturday, during morning services, John T. Earnest opened fire on worshippers at the Chabad of Poway, killing one and wounding three, including the synagogue's rabbi and an eight-year-old girl. The FBI had received a warning about Earnest minutes before the attack but did not have enough time to locate the suspect. Shortly before the attack was carried out, Earnest posted an anti-Semitic manifesto on the 8-Chan board, an online community notorious for hosting extremists. In his manifesto, Earnest accused the Jewish people of seeking to destroy the European race, accused President Trump of being controlled by Jews, and vowed to post a live-stream on Facebook of an attack on a Jewish target. The FBI said Monday that it received tips on a threatening social media post about five minutes before a gunman burst into a Southern California synagogue and opened fire with an assault-style rifle, killing a woman and wounding a rabbi and two others. The tips to the FBI's website and phone number included a link to the anonymous post but did not offer specific information about its author or location of the threat. The FBI said employees immediately tried to determine who wrote the post, but the shooting occurred before they could establish his identity. "The FBI thanks the alert citizens who saw and reported the post," the agency said. One of the tipsters told The Associated Press that he called the FBI tip line at 11:15 a.m. Saturday because the post linked to a manifesto that said the author was responsible for a mosque arson in the city of Escondido last month. He says he found online that had the mosque attack had happened and feared the new threat was real. The tipster, who refused to provide his name because of security concerns, said the call with the FBI lasted four or five minutes and the shooting happened soon after. He described the FBI as quick and professional and said he doesn't know what they could have done. The shooting happened around 11:30 a.m. Moments afterward, police arrested 19-year-old Earnest of San Diego. He is being held on suspicion of murder and attempted murder. The online manifesto written by a person identifying himself as John Earnest was an anti-Jewish screed posted about an hour before the attack. The poster described himself as a nursing school student and praised the suspects accused of carrying out attacks on mosques in New Zealand that killed 50 people last month and at Pittsburgh's Tree of Life synagogue that killed 11 on Oct. 27. About 100 congregants were worshipping at the Chabad of Poway near San Diego on the last day of the Jewish holiday of Passover, which celebrates freedom, when the gunman killed Lori Kaye, 60. He also wounded the synagogue's rabbi, Yisroel Goldstein; Noya Dahan, 8; and her uncle, Almog Peretz. Goldstein said he was preparing for a service and heard a loud sound, turned around and a saw a young man wearing sunglasses standing in front of him with a rifle. "I couldn't see his eyes. I couldn't see his soul," Goldstein said. He raised his hands and lost one of his fingers in the shooting. And then, Goldstein said, "miraculously the gun jammed." In the moments that followed, Goldstein said he wrapped his bloodied hand in a prayer shawl and addressed congregants gathered outside the building, vowing to stay strong in the face of the deadly attack targeting his community. "We are the Jewish nation that will stand tall. We will not let anyone take us down. Terrorism like this will not take us down," Goldstein recalled telling the community. Lori Gilbert Kaye, 60, attended services at Chabad of Poway in suburban San Diego on Saturday, the last day of the weeklong Jewish holiday of Passover, to honor her recently deceased mother. She was one of four people shot, and the only one killed, when a gunman stormed in with an assault-style rifle, six months to the day after 11 worshippers were killed at a Pittsburgh synagogue in the deadliest attack on American Jewry. Police are investigating the incident as a hate crime. Rabbi Goldstein described seeing Kaye's lifeless body on the floor, as her husband tried to resuscitate her before fainting. "It's the most heart-wrenching sight I could have seen," Goldstein told reporters on Sunday. "Lori took the bullet for all of us ... She died to protect all of us." When the gunfire began, Oscar Stewart, 51, a veteran of both the U.S. Navy and Army who served a tour in Iraq, recognized the sound immediately. He said in a Monday interview that for a moment he began running toward the exit with other congregants before he turned around and headed toward the gunfire - for reasons he still cannot quite explain. "I was an instrument of God," he said. "I had no conscious effort in what I was doing." He charged the gunman, screaming, "I'm going to kill you!" The shooter, who had stopped firing, looked frightened and fled the synagogue, with Stewart in close pursuit, he said. Another worshipper, an off-duty U.S. Customs and Border Protection agent named Jonathan Morales, also ran outside after the gunman. Morales, who was armed, fired several shots at the gunman's car as he drove away. Almog Peretz, an Israeli citizen visiting his family, was hit by shrapnel but still managed to help shepherd children to safety, witnesses said. His 9-year-old niece, Noya Dahan, also was wounded by shrapnel. Her family moved to the United States from Israel in search of a safer life after their home was repeatedly shelled by Palestinian rockets. At a vigil on Sunday, Dahan rode on her father's shoulders, wrapped in an Israeli flag, as people cheered. Earnest is scheduled to appear in a San Diego court on Wednesday. Authorities believe he acted alone. Earnest was charged on Sunday afternoon with one count of murder in the first degree, and three counts of attempted murder in the first degree, according to jail records posted on the website of the San Diego County Sheriff's Department. Earnest is not eligible for bail, according to the sheriff's department. He is scheduled to be arraigned on Wednesday afternoon. Local officials have accused Earnest of a hate crime. Authorities are working to determine whether it can apply state hate crimes laws to the attack and if he violated federal civil rights laws, the Daily Beast reported. In a manifesto he is believed to have posted on 8Chan, a conspiracy theory message board, the writer says that he was inspired by the Tree of Life synagogue gunman in Pittsburgh along with the New Zealand mosque shooter. He also calls President Donald Trump "Zionist, Jew-loving, anti-white." Poway Mayor Steve Vaus said on Sunday that preparations made in the aftermath of the massacre at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh "contributed to saving lives" in his hometown, JTA reports. Following the October attack at the Tree of Life synagogue complex in Pittsburgh, Vaus and the San Diego County Sheriff's Department met with Jewish leaders at Chabad of Poway to discuss best practices for an active shooter situation, the mayor said. "We memorialized the victims of the Tree of Life massacre, and then we gave them tips about what to do if hate comes knocking at the door," Vaus told JTA. "Tips like if you can run away, run away; if you can hide, hide; if you can't hide, challenge the shooter.'"

Does Jewish Anti-Semitism Exist?

By Ben-Dror Yemini (Commentary-YnetNews) One of the most influential newspapers in the world, the Jewish-owned New York Times decided to present the Jews with a gift in honor of the last day of Passover - a major Jewish holiday - an anti-Semitic caricature. The controversial cartoon shows US President Donald Trump as a blind man with a skullcap on his head, being led by a dog that looks like Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. And to make sure the reader knows it is indeed the Israeli premier, the dog has a Star of David dangling from its collar. That caricature is worth a thousand words. The rhetoric of the likes of Ku Klux Klan and far-right anti-Semites is beautifully conveyed by the caricature published in one of the world's most liberal newspapers. That caricature erased the differences not only between anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism but between the philosophies of the extreme right-wing and extreme left-wing as well.

Over the past year, the paper has consistently supported the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement that denies Israel's right to exist and has members who openly express their anti-Semitic views. Although the paper's content usually has human rights discourse peppered in, it can't hide the ugliness of racism. Australian-Iranian Imam Mohamad Tawhidi on Saturday wrote that Islamist ideology considers Jews as offsprings of monkeys, pigs and dogs. Now, claims Tawhidi, the New York Times serves to advance the global jihad agenda. The paper seems to have gotten the message, seeing as it removed the cartoon from its digital edition shortly after, admitting the caricature had anti-Semitic undertones and its publication was "an error of judgment." The newspaper could have been forgiven if the cartoon was their only "error of judgment." Given the paper's continued support for Congresswoman Ilhan Omar - who on multiple occasions made anti-Israel and anti-Semitic remarks - it's hard to take the apology of the New York Times seriously. Every newspaper makes mistakes; the problem here is that it all seems to be part of an anti-Israel agenda. Also, on the eve of the Passover Seder, the paper's Jewish readers had been treated to an article which speculated that Jesus Christ was a Palestinian. I don't believe that the newspaper's editors are so ignorant that they don't know Jesus's origins, they are probably just trying to prove Trump's notion that media does indeed publish "fake news." Omar, for her part, was enthusiastic about the article describing Jesus as a Palestinian and didn't hesitate to tweet her support for this theory. The New York Times for their part once again issued an apology in this instance as well, once again citing an error of judgment. Well, at least Omar and this newspaper - which is owned by Jews but insists on being anti-Jewish - have fallen deeply in love with each other. The New York Times has excellent writers who don't hesitate to criticize the paper's anti-Israeli obsession. There is, however, something incredibly sad about the fact that a world-famous newspaper, on the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Days, publishes a caricature that reminds us of something that could have been seen in Der Stürmer (German tabloid during the Nazi regime). This whole situation provides us with an answer to the question of whether Jews can be anti-Semitic? That caricature proves that yes! There is indeed such thing as Jewish anti-Semitism.

Diary of a Holocaust-era Teenager Brought to Life on Social Media

By the Jerusalem Post

Wehrmacht soldiers marching through a city center, swastika banners festooning central boulevards, and locals flying the Nazi flag are just some of the images from a documentary about the short life of Eva Heyman, who was murdered in the Holocaust, which will be posted on Instagram and Facebook on Holocaust Memorial Day this Thursday. The central feature of the initiative, called the Eva Project, is a 50-minute movie based on the life and experiences of Heyman, a 13-year-old Hungarian Jewish girl who kept a rich and poignant diary of the terrifying times in which she lived and died. Throughout May 1 and 2, vignettes of the movie depicting crucial incidents in Heyman's account will be posted on the Internet to bring her story to a 21st-century audience in a format that forcefully and jarringly brings to life the reality of Jews in Nazi-occupied Europe. Conceived and funded by businessman Mati Kochavi and his daughter Maya, the film depicts dozens of incidents from Heyman's diary, including her dream to become a photojournalist, and her romantic hopes and relationships. The film progresses to relate the progressing nightmare of Jews in Hungary during the war, and how Heyman's world was shattered by the Nazi occupation of Hungary in March 1944. By May, the 21,333 Jews of her Transylvanian city, then known as Nagyvárad in Hungarian and Groysvardeyn in Yiddish but today called Oradea in Romanian, were forced into a cramped and unsanitary ghetto. Deportations began on May 24. "Dear diary, you are the luckiest one in the world, because you cannot feel, you cannot know what a terrible thing has happened to us. The Germans have come!" wrote Heyman in her entry for March 19, 1944, as the Nazis occupied Nagyvárad. Two months later Eva was deported to Auschwitz where she was murdered in October 1944, according to Yad Vashem. Her diary ends shortly before she was deported. Her mother, who survived the Holocaust, discovered the document in Nagyvárad in 1945 after liberation. The movie depicts many of the events recorded in Heyman's diary, documenting the progressively direr situation she found herself in, and finally portrays her on the cattle car in which she was deported to Auschwitz. "Dear diary, I don't want to die; I want to live even if it means that I'll be the only person here allowed to stay." she wrote on May 30, just before she was deported. "I can't write anymore, dear diary. The tears run from my eyes," were the last words she penned. Some 400 people, including a Ukrainian production team and British cast, were involved in the making the film, which was shot in Lviv, Ukraine over nine days. Tanks, armored personnel carriers, command cars and train carriages were employed as props to make the movie realistic. The film cost several million dollars although the Kochavis are not revealing the exact cost of the production. According to Maya Kochavi, one of the principal goals of the project is to increase consciousness and knowledge of the Holocaust amongst the younger generation, Jews and non-Jews alike, and social media felt like the best way to achieve this, she said. Kochavi said that both Jews and non-Jews are "disconnected" from the events of the Holocaust, a situation exacerbated by the fact that the last generation of survivors will soon no longer be around to tell their story. This, she said, is a problem for both the Jewish community and non-Jews as well. Many of those disconnected from what transpired during the Holocaust believe the genocide to be "fake news" or greatly exaggerated, she said. "As the survivors are dwindling in numbers, it is very hard to convey the magnitude of the Holocaust to the new generation. The strongest way is to sit with someone who went through it, and to not have the advantage of witnesses who survived is very troubling to the Jewish community," she said. "We thought about how we can get our audience to listen to and understand the Holocaust, to make it personal and tangible, and that's when the idea of social media came in. "The concept is to try and make the new generation feel like it is in the Holocaust, that they are experiencing it, that it is happening through their point of view, and Instagram is like a magical tool for us to do this."

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