Sports body sides with South Africa over removal of Israeli team

World Rugby has said it is “satisfied” the club’s participation in the Mzansi Challenge posed a legitimate security threat

28 Apr, 2023

The global governing body for rugby has concluded that a decision made by the South African Rugby Union (SARU) to disinvite an Israeli team, Tel Aviv Heat, from an international competition last month was not discriminatory, but justified by security threats, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA) reported on Thursday.

World Rugby reportedly based its verdict on public reactions to the Israeli team’s initial invitation, which included a Facebook post warning of a potential “blood bath” and a statement from the South African Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) coalition claiming that SARU would “have blood on its hands” if the Heat participated in the tournament.

In February SARU withdrew the Tel Aviv Heat from the Rugby Mzansi Challenge, pointing to security concerns.

The union’s president said that the decision was made after listening to “the opinions of important stakeholder groups” and in order to “avoid the likelihood of the competition becoming a source of division.”

The South African department of sports, arts, and culture also supported the move, citing the need to maintain a safe environment.

The action was widely criticized, with Israel-based NGO International Legal Forum, according to Jewish News Syndicate, describing it as a “cave-in to extremist anti-Israel forces promoting the racist BDS campaign.”

New Zealand-based lawyer Ian Dunwoodie filed a complaint with the World Rugby Council alleging that SARU breached the World Rugby constitution by axing the Israeli side from the game.

Dunwoodie requested an investigation, citing the constitution, which prohibits “discrimination of any kind against a country or against a private person or groups of people,” according to the Algemeiner.

Trans athletes banned from female competitions

However, as reported by the JTA, World Rugby stated in a letter dated March 29 that it “is satisfied with the explanation provided by SA Rugby that the decision to withdraw the invitation to Tel Aviv Heat to participate in the Mzansi Challenge was based on concerns about an increased safety and security threat.”

The letter also acknowledged “potential threats of violence, disruption and risks to the safety of stakeholders, together with concerns about the ability of SA Rugby to meet its obligations as an event organizer under the Safety at Sports and Recreational Events Act.”

The manager of the Israeli team, Pete Sickle, has challenged the ruling, claiming that they had anticipated a more thorough investigation by World Rugby into the circumstances surrounding the revocation of the invitation.

We still have not seen tangible evidence of credible and significant threats to public safety. We haven’t seen any evidence of SARU or South African security forces analyzing those threats before making this decision,” Sickle told JTA

Could the African Union push Israel into international isolation?

The draft declaration calls on “the international community … to dismantle and prohibit the Israeli system of colonialism and apartheid

Even by the low standards of a country used to being regularly condemned for human rights abuses, disregarding international law and committing war crimes, February was a pretty bad month for Israel and its standing in the world.

From revelations about its companies subverting democratic elections across the globe to this week’s scenes of its illegal settlers, protected by its army, carrying out a pogrom against Palestinians in the occupied West Bank town of Huwara, the country has had its true face exposed to the world in a cruel and meticulous fashion.

At the opening ceremony of the African Union’s annual summit, held at its headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia two weeks ago, there was another nasty surprise and more humiliation in store for the Jewish state.

Ambassador Sharon Bar-Li, the deputy director of the Africa Division of Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, was booted out after turning up, brandishing a non-transferable invitation that had supposedly been issued to Israel’s ambassador to the African Union, Aleli Admasu.

A video posted on social media showed uniformed security personnel escorting her out of the auditorium and Moussa Faki, chairperson of the AU, followed up with a clarification that Israel’s controversial 2021 accreditation as an observer state, which it had pursued for two decades, had actually been suspended and “so we did not invite Israeli officials to our summit”.

Even worse was to come.

According to a Draft Declaration On The Situation In Palestine And The Middle East circulated among reporters at the end of the summit, the AU not only expressed “full support for the Palestinian people in their legitimate struggle against the Israeli occupation”, decrying the “unceasing” illegal settlements and Israel’s intransigence but, significantly, urged member states to “end all direct and indirect trade, scientific and cultural exchanges with the State of Israel”.

This latter recommendation, which echoes the demands of the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement, if implemented, could be the start of a change in Israel’s fortunes, not just on the continent, but across the globe.

After all, Africa is no stranger to leading a global movement seeking to isolate and pressure oppressive, ethno-supremacist regimes, having led one targeting the apartheid regime in South Africa in the 1980s.

And, in fact, the draft declaration calls on “the international community … to dismantle and prohibit the Israeli system of colonialism and apartheid”.

That’s tough talk. But whether any action is likely to follow is up in the air.

The relationship between Africa and Israel is complex and has fluctuated.

Further, the AU’s stance on relations with Israel and the foreign policies of its individual members do not always align.

While Israel’s actions towards its neighbors have been a major irritant, they are far from the only consideration for African nations.

Israel’s enemies

And in the last 21 years, the AU has tended to be more principled while its member nations have been more pragmatic.

Initially, Israel cultivated close ties with newly independent African countries as a way to counter the isolation and hostility imposed on it by its Arab neighbors.

In the 1960s, more than 1,800 Israeli experts were running development programs on the continent and by 1972, Israel hosted more African embassies than Britain.

It had established diplomatic relations with 32 of the 41 independent African states which were also members of the Organisation of African Unity, the forerunner to the AU, founded in 1963.

For much of this period, attempts by the North African nations, led by Egypt, to gain backing for the Arab cause from the rest of Africa had been largely unsuccessful, the relatively young nations not wanting to become enmeshed in the conflict.

But attitudes began to change following the 1967 Arab-Israeli war.

African reactions to the conflict were mixed, with some countries such as apartheid South Africa and Ethiopia, which was initially critical, expressing support for Israel and others siding with the Arab states.

Overall, however, many African leaders, with memories of colonialism’s acquisition of land by force still fresh, viewed Israel’s actions dimly and on June 8, as the fighting was ongoing, the OAU condemned Israel’s “unprovoked aggression” and called for an immediate ceasefire.

BDS ‘Mapping Project’ links Jews to ‘all ills’ of society

The Mapping Project: a project created by activists and organizers in eastern Massachusetts, investigating local links between entities responsible for the colonization of Palestine, for colonialism and dispossession here where we live, and for the economy of imperialism and war. Here is how the Zionists feel about it. Note that there is a difference between Jews and Zionists. The Zionists intention from the beginning has been to blend in with the real Jews. The Jews reject all forms of Zionism. This is not about Jews. It is about Zionists who work for the Zionist Entity called Israel.

“This whole project is reminiscent of a dangerous antisemitic pattern of activity known from antiquity through the horrors of the 20th century: a pattern which has led to violence against Jews and their institutions,” said Israel’s Foreign Ministry.

The Zionist invaders have always been terrorists!

 World Israel News

An anti-Israeli group in Boston, Massachusetts, published Friday an interactive map showing ostensible links between myriad Jewish groups in the state and public and private companies and institutions, in an attempt to broaden support for the demonization of the Jewish state.

The purpose of the innocuous-sounding Mapping Project is not hidden. The pro-BDS group said it “wanted to develop a deeper understanding of local institutional support for the colonization of Palestine and harms that we see as linked, such as policing, US imperialism, and displacement/ethnic cleansing.”

Other “harms” they throw into the mix include “systemic white supremacy” in the U.S., “privatization and medical apartheid.” The “liberation struggles” against all these types of wickedness propagated by the “oppressors,” which the mappers claim are the U.S. and Israel, “are connected” and therefore should be fought together, the BDS activists say.


— BDS Boston (@BDSBoston) June 3, 2022

This classic example of intersectionality then displays a series of Jewish organizations whose sin, according to the group, is support for the Jewish state. The names range from the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), AIPAC and J Street to Jewish charities, newspapers, and a synagogue network, along with almost all those who work for them.

They are linked on the map to such public institutions as universities like MIT and Harvard (which “engage in these multiple forms of oppression and produce much of the ruling class”), municipal governments, labor federations, and military bases. Dozens of corporations in the private sector are also targets, including Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, Google, Citigroup, Deloitte and DuPont.

Local police forces are a special target, as the group supports the discredited claim that officers are flown to Israel to learn anti-terrorism tactics that are then used inappropriately against minorities back home.

US police chiefs are visiting the country as part of an ADL delegation to learn advanced training techniques from Israel Police. Among the delegation are chiefs of the Orlando, Florida and San Bernadino, California, police departments, who recently witnessed unprecedented terrorist attacks in their cities. Remember, for land thieving murderous “Israel” the native Palestinians are terrorists.

In a joint statement, the ADL, Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Boston (JCRC) and Combined Jewish Philanthropies (CJP) – all named by the group – strongly denounced the effort.

Its “underlying messages are clear: Jews are responsible for the ills of our community and if you maintain your relationship with Jewish organizations, you will share that responsibility,” the NGOs said.

“It is a list with names and organizations to be shunned, isolated and disenfranchised. And it draws on age-old antisemitic tropes that are all too clear to our community: Jewish wealth, control and conspiracies.”

The Israeli government also hit back, not ignoring the fact that its Boston-based consulate general to New England was a prominent target.

“Israel strongly condemns BDS Boston’s publication of a map of local Jews and its blaming them for anything and everything wrong in Greater Boston,” said Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lior Haiat.

“This publication reveals the true, ugly face of BDS Boston, which is nothing but a conspiratorial antisemitic organization. We call on all decent people to come out against this publication, and to condemn the organization and those behind this racist campaign.”

The Mapping Project says it wants to “dismantle” all its targets. The NGOs’ response: “We will not be intimidated and we will not be silent.”

How Ben & Jerry’s Exposed Israel’s anti-BDS Strategy

Israel is an imperial outpost, an extension of Wall Street and the City of London in the Middle East. That’s the origin of “Israel.”

Ben & Jerry’s decision to suspend its operations in the occupied Palestinian West Bank is an event that is proving critical to Palestinian efforts, which ultimately aim at holding Israel accountable for its military occupation, apartheid and war crimes.

By responding to the Palestinian call for boycotting apartheid Israel, the ice cream giant has delivered a blow to Israel’s attempts at criminalizing and, ultimately, ending the global Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign.

What differentiates Ben & Jerry’s decision to abandon the ever-growing market of illegal Jewish settlements in the West Bank from previous decisions by other international corporations is the fact that the ice cream company has made it clear that its move was morally motivated.

Indeed, Ben & Jerry’s did not attempt to mask or delude their decision in any way.

“We believe it is inconsistent with our values for Ben & Jerry’s ice cream to be sold in the Occupied Palestinian Territory,” a statement by the Vermont, US-based company read on July 19.

Expectedly, the Israeli government was infuriated by the decision, especially as it comes after years of a well-funded, state-sponsored, global campaign to discredit, demonize and altogether outlaw the BDS movement and any similar initiatives that aimed at boycotting Israel.

For years, the Israeli government has viewed the boycott movement as a real, tangible threat.

Some Israeli officials went as far as perceiving the ‘delegitimization’ resulting from the boycott campaign as the primary threat faced by Israel at the present time.

Well attended conferences were held in Las Vegas, Brussels, Jerusalem and elsewhere, hundreds of millions of dollars raised, fiery speeches delivered, while politicians and ‘philanthropists’ lined up at many occasions, vowing their undying allegiance to Israel and accusing anyone who dare criticize the ‘Jewish State’ as ‘antisemitic’.

However, Israel’s biggest challenge was, and remains, its near complete reliance on the support of self-serving politicians.

True, those ‘friends of Israel’ can be quite helpful in formulating laws that, for example, falsely equate between criticizing Israel and antisemitism, or render the act of boycott illegal, and so on.

In fact, many US states and European parliaments have bowed down to Israeli pressure to criminalize the BDS movement and its supporters, whether in the realm of business or even at the level of civil society and individuals. All of this is amounting to very little.

Additionally, Israel doubled down on its attempts to control the narrative in mainstream media, in academia and wherever the anti-Israeli occupation debate proved to be consequential.

Through a Kafkaesque, and often bizarre logic, Israel and its supporters deliberately misinterpreted the IHRA definition of antisemitism, applying it at every platform where criticism of Israel or its Zionist ideology is found.

The reckless Israeli dialectics was, sadly – albeit predictably – embraced by many of Israel’s Western benefactors, including US, Canada and Italy, among others.

Yet, none of this has ended or even slowed down the momentum of the Palestinian boycott movement.

This fact should hardly come as a surprise, for boycott movements are fundamentally designed to circumvent governmental control and to place pressure on politicians, state and corporate apparatuses, so that they may heed the calls of civil society.

Thus, the more Israel attempts to use its allies to illegalize, delegitimize and suppress dissent, the more it actually fuels it.

The above is the secret of the BDS success and Israel’s very Achilles’ heel.

By ignoring the boycott campaign, the movement grows exponentially; and by fighting it, using traditional means and predictable language, it grows even faster.

In order to appreciate Tel Aviv’s unsolvable quandary, just marvel at this odd response, which was offered by top Israeli officials in response to Ben & Jerry’s decision.

Israeli Prime Minister, Naftali Bennett, warned the British company that acquired Ben & Jerry’s in 2000, of “severe consequences”, threatening that Israel will take “strong action”, most likely referring to legal action.

But what was truly strange was the language used by Israeli President, Isaac Herzog, who accused Ben & Jerry’s of participating in “a new form of terrorism”, namely, “economic terrorism”. On July 21, Herzog vowed to fight “this boycott and terrorism in any form”.

Note how the Israeli response to the continued success of the Palestinian boycott movement remains confined in terms of options and language.

Yet on the legal front, most attempts at indicting BDS activists have repeatedly failed, as the recent court rulings in Washington demonstrate.

On the other hand, the act of accusing an ice cream company of ‘terrorism’ deserves some serious examination.

Historically, Israel has situated its anti-Palestinian propaganda war within a handful of redundant terminology, predicated on the claim that Israel is a Jewish and democratic State, the security and very existence of which is constantly being threatened by terrorists and undermined by anti-Semites.

The above mantra may have succeeded in shielding Israel from criticism and tarnishing Israel’s victims, the Palestinians.

However, it is no longer a guarantor of international sympathy and solidarity.

Not only is the Palestinian struggle for freedom gaining global traction, but the pro-Israeli discourse is finally discovering its limitations.

By calling an ice cream company ‘terrorist’ for simply adhering to international law, Herzog has revealed the growing lack of credibility and absurdity of the official Israeli language.

But this is not the end of Israel’s problems.

Regardless of whether they are branded successful or unsuccessful, all BDS campaigns are equally beneficial in the sense that each campaign kickstarts a conversation that often goes global, as we have seen repeatedly in the past.

Airbnb, G4S, and SodaStream, are but a few of many such examples. Any global debate on Israel’s military occupation and apartheid is a BDS success story.

That said, there is one strategy that will surely end the BDS campaign, and that is ending the Israeli occupation, dismantling the racial system of apartheid and giving Palestinians their freedom as enshrined and protected by international law.

Alas, this is the only strategy that Israeli officials are yet to consider.

Zionist agent Rubio reintroduce bill allowing states to crack down on BDS

Is there any way to get Israhell out of US government?

Zionist agents in the US

Senators Joe Manchin (D-WV) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) have reintroduced legislation that would provide states with more tools to attack the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

The Combating BDS Act of 2021 would effectively allow state and local governments to implement laws targeting firms that boycott Israel.

Similar legislation has been introduced in the Senate and House and lawmakers attempted to push this bill after congress returned from the government shutdown in 2019.

“The bipartisan Combating BDS Act is a step towards ensuring individual states have the right to pass laws that prevent business transactions with the anti-Israeli BDS movement,” said Manchin in a statement.

November 25, 2012 – MARCO RUBIO, ILEANA ROS-LEHTINEN, DEBBIE WASSERMAN SCHULTZ, FREDERICA WILSON. . Senator Marco Rubio Paticipates In Miami Beach Israel Solidarity Rally. Both Rubio and ROS-LEHTINEN are anti-Castro, pro-Israel agents.

 “I urge my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to join this bipartisan legislation to support individual states and our valued ally, Israel.”

“The boycott, divestment, and sanctions movement is the single most destructive campaign of economic warfare facing the Jewish state of Israel today,” said Rubio.

Florida Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen honored in Israel for her record on eve of retirement

“Amid a rising tide of anti-Semitism, it’s critical that we stand shoulder to shoulder with our closest democratic ally in the Middle East.

This bipartisan bill, which previously passed the Senate, would mark an important step toward bringing an end to the BDS movement’s discriminatory efforts.”

Thirty-three state governments have passed laws targeting BDS in recent years.

According to Palestine Legal, there were twenty-one legislative measures attacking Palestinian rights advocacy just last year alone.

A 2018 article from Foundation for Middle East Peace president Lara Friedman explains how such legislation could easily be expanded beyond Israel and used as a cudgel to crack down on free speech more widely.

“In states that have adopted conservative definitions regarding when life begins or rights of a fetus, minimal tweaks could transform an Israel gag law into one requiring that, as a condition for state contracts, individuals and companies certify they do not support Planned Parenthood,” wrote Friedman.

“Other tweaks could produce legislation prohibiting contracts with supporters of movements engaging in civil disobedience — as a possible means of targeting Black Lives Matter or Dakota Pipeline protesters, for example.”

The bill is currently backed by just Manchin and Rubio, but during the 115th Congress (2017-2018) it netted 48 cosponsors. 33 Republicans and 15 Democrats.

Idaho, West Virginia join the US states of Israel

JTA — Idaho and West Virginia have joined the growing list of states that over the past several years have passed anti-Israel boycott legislation aimed at outlawing businesses that support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement.

The bills passed this week bring the number of states with similar laws to 33.

Idaho’s Anti-Boycott Against Israel Act states that public entities cannot do business over a total of $100,000 with companies that do not expressly oppose the BDS movement. West Virginia’s bill stipulates the same.

“The State of West Virginia has an economic and a humanitarian obligation to denounce and reject the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions Movement against Israel, and to prevent the state or any of its instrumentalities from contracting with companies that engage in the movement,” the measure reads.

Since 2015, anti-BDS laws have gained momentum, but also hit bumps along the way in the form of high-profile critics who argue the legislation hampers free speech.

In 2019, the US Senate, then controlled by the Republican Party, passed a bill by a vote of 77-23 that gave states legal cover to continue to introduce anti-BDS legislation.

Some states and specific institutions have found themselves embroiled in free speech lawsuits over the laws.

Victory for BDS as judge SLAPPS down Zionist attempt to stifle free speech

An Israeli soldier who launched a $6 million defamation action in America against a Palestinian Christian has seen her legal efforts backfire spectacularly.

Although her lawyer urged the US judge to apply Israeli defamation law, which punishes criticism of the Zionist State by up to one year in prison, Rebecca Rumshiskaya lost her case.

Californian Judge Craig Griffin rejected and dismissed the lawsuit as well as the attempt to apply Israeli laws in his Orange County Superior Court.

In his ruling, the judge also granted Palestinian Suhair Nafal’s anti-SLAPP motion and said that Rumshiskaya must pay the defendant’s legal costs.

The anti-SLAPP laws are designed to deter people from using the US courts, and potential threats of a lawsuit, to intimidate people who are exercising their First Amendment rights to free speech.

A “strategic lawsuit against public participation” (SLAPP) is one intended to deter freedom of speech, and which the plaintiff usually doesn’t really expect to win.

Suhair Nafal was banned for publishing this post on Facebook

The outcome of this particular lawsuit is a major blow to Israel’s ongoing efforts around the world to silence the boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement, especially on social networks.

It is also a major victory for Nafal and her supporters. She insisted, however, that this was a victory for all pro-Palestinian activists, both on social media and on the ground.

“We have a lot of work ahead of us, but we are tireless and will not give up until we see justice served.”

Californian Rumshiskaya, 26, went to live in Israel in 2012 and enlisted in the Israel Defence Forces as an instructor in the Education and Youth Corps.

She sought advice from “lawfare” specialists Shurat HaDin two years after a photograph of her fully armed and in uniform was posted by BDS activist Nafal on her Facebook page in 2018.

The Palestinian had downloaded the image of the IDF poster girl from the military’s own official Facebook page.

Nafal’s post was about heroic 21-year-old Palestinian paramedic Razan Al-Najjar, who was killed by an Israeli sniper while she was on duty as a volunteer helping the wounded during the peaceful Great March of Return demonstrations that took place near the nominal Gaza Strip border in 2018.

To draw a comparison between the two women, Nafal uploaded Rumshiskaya’s promotional photograph next to that of the young paramedic.

There was absolutely no suggestion that this particular Israeli soldier was involved in the killing of Al-Najjar.

She had left the IDF three years earlier. However, some pro-Israel supporters tried to twist the narrative and say that Nafal’s post claimed that Rumshiskaya was responsible for the medic’s death.

Nafal contacted the Arab American Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) for assistance in the case and she was represented by Attorney Haytham Faraj, an ADC national board member.

According to Faraj, the primary work of the firm representing the Israeli soldier in the lawsuit was to focus on silencing and threatening BDS activists, critics of Israeli human rights violations, and violations of international humanitarian law.

In the statement of the claim presented by Shurat HaDin to the California court last year, Rumshiskaya’s lawyers said that the “accusation” was clearly false since she’d never served in the Gaza Strip during her military service.

They added that their client worked for human rights and took part in joint delegations of Israelis and Arabs in Jordan and the occupied West Bank.

In a dramatic statement that bordered on hysteria, Israeli lawyer Nitsana Darshan-Leitner said in the statement: “It seems like we’re going back to [infamous forgery] The Protocols of the Elders of Zion and to the anti-Semitic blood libels that belong to the past. Rebecca and her family have received death threats, only because she decided to join the IDF.”

Darshan-Leitner, the founder of Shurat HaDin Israeli Law Centre, added: “The war on anti-Semitism has expanded to the legal sphere as well, and Rebecca’s lawsuit is the spearhead of our struggle against the global boycott movement against Israel.

This is a message to all BDS activists, who should know that they too may be held responsible for their anti-Zionist activity and may even need to pay a heavy price.”

In some ways the Shurat HaDin lawyer was right. This legal case has certainly sent out a strong message to BDS supporters, which is that they should carry on with their vital and entirely peaceful efforts to bring Israel to account for its human rights abuses.

US lawyer Faraj said that the ruling by Judge Griffin preserved the First Amendment rights of Arab American and Palestinian communities to free speech, including political speech.

Pointing out that, “America is not Israel,” he added: “The former Israeli soldier who sued Ms Nafal sought to have the court apply Israeli law, which punishes criticism of Israel by up to one year in prison. The judge rejected the lawsuit and the attempt to apply Israeli law.”

The attorney said that by granting Nafal the Anti-SLAPP motion, the judge sent a clear message that the US tolerates and values the diversity of opinions and political views, and those who seek to improperly silence political criticism will have a price to pay.

One can only hope the case in California will have an impact here in Britain, where Zionists are leading a witch hunt to try to conflate criticism of Israel with anti-Semitism.

The pro-Israel lobby uses the discredited “definition” of anti-Semitism drafted by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) to try to block any and all discussion of the state of Israel and its contempt for international laws and conventions.

Some of the examples of “anti-Semitism” cited in the IHRA document — which even the person who drafted it has said is a “working definition” — relate to criticism of Israel. Academics have criticised the definition, which has been described as “not fit for purpose“.

BDS is facing a lot of challenges from Israel’s allies who allow it to act with impunity.

Ironically, some of those allies are real anti-Semites who are left free to do their racist worst in this world every time that the pro-Israel lobby weaponises anti-Semitism against the people of Palestine and their supporters in the struggle for peace and justice. Some people just never learn.

Suhair Nafal said: “This victory was not just a victory for me, it was a victory for all pro-Palestinian activists, both on social media and on the ground,” she added.

“We have a lot of work ahead of us, but we are tireless and will not give up until we see justice served.”

Rumshiskaya vs. Nafal minute order

BDS 'verges' on anti-Semitism? ... - Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

BDS ‘verges’ on anti-Semitism? … – Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

Berlin art college withdraws funding to Israelis seeking to unlearn Zionism

A Berlin art school abruptly withdrew funding for a program started by Jewish Israelis who seek to challenge the Zionist narrative they grew up on.

October 21, 2020


In Germany, Jewish Israelis who seek to challenge the Zionist narrative are now effectively considered antisemitic.

About a year ago, a dozen Jewish Israeli artists and scholars living in Berlin started a program called The School for Unlearning Zionism as a “space for joint learning and internal, Jewish-Israeli self-negotiation with the Zionist story.”

The project has advertised daily virtual events throughout October with both Israeli and Palestinian speakers, from historian Ilan Pappé on “Zionism as Settler Colonialism,” to Palestinian policy analysts Marwa Fatafta and Salem Barahmeh on “The Second Intifada, Oslo and what comes next.”

In addition to the lectures, which according to organizers have had between 25 to 80 participants, the initiative has set up film screenings and an art installation at the Weissensee Kunsthochschule, an art college in Berlin.

But on Oct. 8, just days into the program, the university administration abruptly retracted the meager funding for the program — symbolic fees of 100 euros for each speaker — and took the page on its site down, without even notifying the organizers.

“I was very surprised the university leadership took action without speaking to me and without looking into the matter and speaking to anyone in the program about the art installation,” said Professor Mathias Jud, a visiting professor at the art school who has been overseeing the work of several Jewish Israeli students researching the concept of “unlearning Zionism.”

The university’s response was prompted by an email it received on Oct. 7, which was viewed by +972, from Frederik Schindler, a journalist with the conservative Die Welt daily.

Schindler turned to the university for comment about the program with the claim that it has ties to the Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

He specifically named four Jewish Israelis on the speaker list as supporters of BDS, which is considered antisemitic in Germany.

In the email, Schindler also quoted two tweets highly critical of the event, including one from Volker Beck, a hardline pro-Israel politician in Germany who served as an MP in the Bundestag till 2017.

Beck argued that the event can go on, but not with federal money.

In May 2019, the German government passed a resolution that deems support for BDS antisemitic, very literally because of its association in German collective memory with the Nazi-era boycott of Jewish businesses.

It includes language about denying state funds to those who question Israel’s right to exist and support or actively call for a boycott of Israel.

While the resolution is not legally binding, activism or dialogue around boycotting Israel — or even challenging the Israeli government line — are considered taboo in Germany, at least in public institutions.

Last June, the president of the Jewish Museum in Berlin was forced to step down after tweeting about a letter by Israeli academics who reject the equation of BDS with antisemitism.

Considering the relatively small size of the project, it appears the university capitulated to right wing pressure — purportedly prompted by Schindler’s email.

“We had to decide quickly how to handle the protest against the realization of this event,” university spokesperson Birgit Fleischmann told +972 in an email, referring to “noise” made on social media.

She said that Schindler indeed informed them of the program, and confirmed that the reason for the withdrawal of funding is parliament’s anti-BDS resolution, along with a November 2019 declaration by German university heads to endorse it.

Visitors at the Jewish Museum in Berlin, Germany, one of the largest Jewish Museums in Europe, October 26, 2012. (Nati Shohat/Flash90)

Visitors at the Jewish Museum in Berlin, Germany, one of the largest Jewish Museums in Europe, October 26, 2012. (Nati Shohat/Flash90)

The university did not specify what about the program qualifies it as supportive of BDS, however.

Asked how they respond to the fact that Jewish Israelis now feel silenced, Fleischmann apologized to all those who have been affected by the university’s decision and said that, with federal support out of the question, the university will “try to support the organizers in finding other possibilities to finance the project, which requires a small budget, so that the lectures can happen as the students had planned.”

Jud said this is the first time he has been involved in an academic event that was denied funding due to its content.

He sees this as a clear violation of academic freedom, and has made his opposition clear to the university. It is “very problematic” to cancel the events by claiming they violate the anti-BDS resolution, he explained, “because that resolution states explicitly that you cannot cancel Jewish events. It is explicitly against the boycotts of events by Jews.” Indeed, in trying to uphold a ban on boycotting Jews, the university is targeting and effectively boycotting certain Jews.

The School for Unlearning Zionism has nothing to do with BDS, says Yehudit Yinhar, one of the group’s founders who grew up on a kibbutz and has been living in Berlin for a decade, currently studying art at Weissensee Kunsthochschule.

“The practice of unlearning is related to looking at power relations and your own role within them. In order to dismantle hegemony and be partners in struggles for equality within spaces where power relations are not equal and privilege is a resource, we must have this conversation amongst ourselves,” she remarked.

Yinhar explained that the School for Unlearning Zionism provides her with a political home, where people can share personal stories and texts.

“Really important moments of growing and learning together have been happening in this space, and then this institution comes and says, ‘we need you to talk differently or go back to Israel where it’s not a problem.

But you can’t be like that here. That doesn’t work with our story, we own your history.’ German policy is turning us into good or bad Jews.” 

The spokesperson for the Israeli Embassy in Berlin declined an interview. Instead, he referred me to their tweets on the issue, in which they not only stand by the university’s decision, but explicitly call the program antisemitic.

“Hosting a workshop whose title already negates Israel’s livelihood is an embrace of anti-Semitism,” one tweet reads.

The embassy also invokes the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of antisemitism, which cites the denial of the Jewish people’s right to self-determination as an example.

“This series of events falls under this definition and should be recognized for what it is: anti-Zionist and anti-Semitic,” they wrote in another tweet.

For Shir Hever, an Israeli political economist who is active in various educational and activist groups on Israel-Palestine in Germany and is one of the program’s guest speakers, the real issue is not the battle against BDS but the rise of the pro-Israel far-right in Germany. 

Hever says it is no coincidence the original drafters of the anti-BDS resolution are the AfD, a far-right Islamophobic and pro-Israel party.

Similar to representatives within the GOP who claim to be pro-Israel but peddle in antisemitic conspiracy theories, the party includes leaders who wave Israeli flags while denying the Holocaust.

“Suddenly there are new movements — mostly pro-Israel groups and German-Israel associations — that say antisemitism is not a German Christian problem but an imported Muslim one,” explained Hever.

“That allows them to rewrite history. It’s not about hating Jews but putting Jews into a certain box: We love the Jews as long as they are in Israel fighting the Muslims,” which serves a white nationalist German narrative, he added.

Around 25,000 Israelis live in Berlin, a space Yinhar describes as “between Tel Aviv and Ramallah,” where the separation between Israelis and Palestinians that she grew up with no longer exists.

Berlin is also home to the largest Palestinian diaspora community in Europe, numbering 60,000, according to Sa’ed Atshan, co-author of the book “Moral Triangle: Germans Israelis, Palestinians.”

The book is based on research the authors did in 2018 in Berlin, asking representative samples of all three groups what Germany’s moral responsibility is toward Israelis and Palestinians living in the country.

Atshan says it is common for Jewish Israelis in Berlin to be accused of antisemitism by white Christian Germans, but that Palestinians are disproportionately censored. “Palestinians in Germany are in a precarious position, he remarked.

“It is political and social suicide for Palestinian Germans to be out publicly about their politics. They are on the receiving end of false accusations of antisemitism coupled with racism against migrants, Arabs and Muslims.”

Atshan also describes Berlin as a place that provides a fruitful “post-Zionist context,” especially considering that many Israelis and Palestinians live in the same neighborhoods.

But there is a disconnect between the more private, grassroots discourse and the institutional discourse, he added.

“There is a politics of guilt that leads to stifling of speech and intellectual debate,” Atshan continued.

“At the same time, there is tremendous openness and ability to reckon with the past and engage with questions of politics.”

Terrorist Mossad involvement in Israel anti-BDS campaigns exposed


Speech by Hezbollah Secretary General Sayed Hassan Nasrallah on Friday, May 31, 2019, on the occasion of Al-Quds (Jerusalem) International Day.

The key point in this project was the existence of the State of Israel, its strengthening and rooting, the normalization of its existence with the countries of the region, so that Israel becomes the (dominant) Axis: the Axis of politics, security, economy, etc.

And that means, in return, the liquidation of the Palestinian cause, which it had to be terminated once and for all.

Any (palestinian) claim on Al-Quds (Jerusalem), the lands of 1948, the West Bank or the Gaza Strip, or on (the return of the) Palestinian refugees in the diaspora, or on an independent Palestinian State, regardless of its extent, had to cease definitively and get out of all calculations and all considerations.

This has always been the (American-Zionist) goal. And they relied on the passage of time (and peoples’ despondency and forgetfulness).*

June 12, 2019 

Anti-BDS campaigns exposed

The involvement of Israel’s national intelligence agency Mossad in initiatives against the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement has been exposed by a Freedom of Information request.

The request was made by Israeli advocacy organisation Hatzlaha to all ministers, deputy ministers and ministry directors-general, in doing so making the diary schedules of Strategic Affairs Minister Gilad Erdan – who has spearheaded Israel’s de-facto war against BDS – publicly available.

The diaries revealed that last year Erdan met with head of Mossad Yossi Cohen about “the struggle against the boycott”. Although rumors that Mossad has assisted the state in its anti-BDS activities have circulated in the past, today’s disclosure presents further evidence of the intelligence agency’s involvement.

A statement issued by Erdan’s office said that “[he] met during the last term with the heads of the security services to brief them on the ministry’s activities related to the fight against the delegitimization and boycott [BDS] campaign,” stressing the meeting only constituted “a review” of the ministry’s efforts.

However, sources familiar with the activities of the Strategic Affairs Ministry told Haaretz that “the ministry indeed cooperates with the Mossad”.

The diaries also showed that Erdan met with other high-profile security officials last year, including National Security Adviser Meir Ben-Shabbat, as well as representatives of global Jewish organisations such as the American Jewish Committee, B’nai B’rith and the American Jewish Congress.

Below: Likud Cabinet Minister Gilad Erdan declares Florida gov. Rick Scott a friend of Israel after he facilitated Orlando false flag. Erdan says that G4s will pay the price for boycotting Israel, next sentence declares Florida gov. Rick Scott a friend of Israel who is helping Israel with the fight against their enemies. RE: “News that a G4S employee was the gunman who killed 50 people at a packed gay nightclub in Florida wiped almost $282.80 million off the value of the world’s largest security firm.”

Also included on the schedule were “many meetings” linked to the establishment of “Concert”, a private but partly government-controlled company designed to “covertly advance ‘mass awareness activities’ as part of ‘the struggle against the campaign to delegitimize’ Israel”.

The company has received 128 million shekels ($36 million) in funding from the Israeli government, matching the same amount in private contributions from pro-Israel organisations and individual donors.

The announcement comes just two days after it was revealed that Erdan’s Strategic Affairs Ministry forced 30 fundraising accounts associated with BDS to close in the past two years.

The ministry announced that it had forced the closure of ten US-based fundraising accounts and a further 20 in Europe, by directing pro-Israel activists to report the accounts to their host platforms PayPal and DonorBox.

Among those organisations targeted by the shut downs were the BDS National Committee – the movement’s Ramallah-based arm – as well as human rights organisation Al-Haq and UK-based charity Interpal.

Infamous legal advocacy group Shurat HaDin – which regularly fights court battles on Israel’s behalf – was closely involved in pushing for the closures.

In December, the same group filed a complaint to DonorBox requesting that BDS’ fundraising account be shut down, prompting the movement’s founder, Omar Barghouti, to label the group “a repressive organisation with clear connections to the far-right Israeli government” that is “engaging in McCarthyite tactics”.

Shurat HaDin is known to have links with Mossad. In 2017 Shurat HaDin head Nitsana Darshan-Leitner released a book titled “Harpoon”, after the codename of the Mossad finance-tracking unit she worked with.

Darshan-Leitner revealed how, after Shurat HaDin began to gain traction by suing Palestinians for the Second Intifada, she was invited to Mossad headquarters for a consultation.

After she explained Shurat HaDin’s process, Mossad’s response, Darshan-Leitner claimed, was “what do we have to do to file more lawsuits? What do you need?” This then “evolved into regular briefings, held in quiet cafes, where she would get tip-offs” to assist her work.

5th Column Holocaust terrorists sought reconsideration of Angela Davis honor

In America, fighters for Israel are not our freedom fighters!

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 The 5th Column Jewish terrorist group get static

Earlier, Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin expressed his “dismay” at the decision to cancel the award gala, which he said came “after protests from our local Jewish community and some of its allies.”

City council member Steven Hoyt told media that the institute’s move was “absolutely embarrassing.”

An  Israeli Alabama holocaust terrorist civil rights organization withdrew a planned human rights award from political activist Angela Davis after a group that educates Alabamians about the Holocaust asked them to reconsider the honor.

The Birmingham Terrorist Holocaust Education Center wrote to the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute on Jan. 2 expressing “concern and disappointment” about the plan to honor Davis with an award named for minister and civil rights pioneer Fred L. Shuttlesworth. The letter urged the institute to “reconsider your decision.”

The Holocaust group cited “recent outspoken support” of a boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign against Israel, reported.

Israeli Mossad, by faking YET ANOTHER mass shooting in Strasbourg, tried to put an end to the “Gilet Jaune” (Yellow Jacket”) movement which is seeking to expose and end Zionist control of France and Europe. This “false flag attack then blame the fake Arab” gag is a long running trick used by Mossad and by the Israeli-controlled media whenever public discourse begins to run against them.

In a statement posted on its website over the weekend, the Birmingham Zionist Civil Rights Institute said, “Upon closer examination of Ms. Davis’ statements and public record, we concluded that she unfortunately does not meet all of the criteria on which the award is based.”

The Institute’s statement did not say what specific criteria Davis did not meet.

Davis, a Birmingham native, said Monday that the board wouldn’t tell her why it rescinded the award but she later learned her “long-term support of justice for Palestine was at issue.”

The civil rights institute also canceled a gala set for February.

The award’s withdrawal spawned widespread controversy and prompted three BCRI board members to resign Wednesday. The former board members — chair Mike Oatridge, first vice chair Walter Body and secretary Janice Kelsey — said they regret the circumstances surrounding the award’s selection process and “the dissension this has caused.”

“It is hoped this move will enable the City of Birmingham to create a board structure that will best enable the BCRI to continue its critical mission in the future,” the trio said in a statement.

The Holocaust education center’s letter was signed by board president Deborah Layman and the 11 other members of the board’s executive committee, as well as executive director Thomas Bryant. Layman said the committee voted unanimously to send the letter.

“Our intention was to go on record about our concerns in a private letter sent to BCRI leadership,” she said in an email to, responding to a query about the letter. “We had no further part in the decision made by BCRI to cancel the event, and we were surprised at their decision.”

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Davis said she is still coming to Birmingham next month as part of “an alternative event.”

A coalition of local activists and citizens said the “grassroots” event will be open to the public and will take place Feb. 16, at a site yet to be determined.

“It will be a conversation with Dr. Davis, not a ticketed event,” DeJuana Thompson, founder of Woke Vote, said at a news conference Wednesday. “It will center around her life’s work and the current work she’s doing to address injustice around the world.”

Layman said the Holocaust education organization is willing to meet Davis with when she comes to her hometown.

“(We) would be happy to have a conversation with Prof. Davis,” Layman said. “We believe that through open, respectful dialogue, mutual understandings may be reached.”

Holocaust refers to the mass murder of European Jews and other groups by the Nazi Germans before and during World War II, while the post WW2 Zionist holocaust in Palestine is hidden.

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“Absolutely embarrassing”

The BCRI’s decision is generating a growing backlash.

On Tuesday, the city council in Birmingham, Alabama, unanimously adopted a resolution “recognizing the life work of Angela Davis” – an implicit rebuke to the BCRI.

Davis, who suffered incarceration and political persecution for her support for Black liberation, grew up in Birmingham’s Dynamite Hill, a neighborhood that got its name from the frequency of bombings and violent attacks targeting its residents by white supremacists.

City council member Steven Hoyt, who proposed the council resolution, told media that the institute’s move was “absolutely embarrassing.”

“Everybody respects her but us. In academic communities as well as society and various groups,” Hoyt added. “I’m embarrassed. I’m embarrassed to even serve in a city that would do that.”

On Monday, Black activists called for leadership changes and protests at the BCRI, an institution ostensibly established to honor and advance the cause of civil rights.

On Wednesday, the BCRI’s chair, vice-chair and secretary resigned from the board.

“As members of this board, we regret the circumstances surrounding the selection process regarding the 2018 Reverend Fred L. Shuttlesworth Human Rights Award and the dissension this has caused,” they said in a statement.

Earlier, Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin expressed his “dismay” at the decision to cancel the award gala, which he said came “after protests from our local Jewish community and some of its allies.”

Local media revealed that pressure had come from, among others, the Birmingham Jewish Federation, a staunchly pro-Israel communal group.

On Wednesday, the news publication confirmed that the Birmingham Holocaust Education Center wrote to the BCRI to express “concern and disappointment” over the honor to Davis, citing her support for BDS.

Davis is the second high-profile Black intellectual to be targeted by pro-Israel lobby pressure in recent weeks.

In November, Marc Lamont Hill was dismissed from his role as a CNN political commentator following an Israel lobby campaign of lies and smears misrepresenting a speech he made at the United Nations in support of Palestinian rights and BDS – the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement to pressure Israel to respect international law and human rights.

Temple University also faced pressure from the Zionist Organization of America to dismiss Hill as a professor – a step it has not taken amid warnings that this would violate Hill’s First Amendment rights.

Last June, the University of Vienna banned a public lecture by Dhoruba Bin-Wahad after a smear campaign against the veteran Black American activist, author and former political prisoner, and against the Palestine solidarity groups co-sponsoring the event.

Punish and censor

The civil rights group Palestine Legal called the BCRI’s decision to rescind the honor to Angela Davis “the latest incident in a well-documented nationwide campaign to censor and punish critics of Israel.

“The pattern of censorship targeting Israel’s critics is already well documented,” Palestine Legal added.

“So are attempts by Israeli government officials to divide Black leaders and suppress those who draw connections between freedom struggles of Black Americans and Palestinians.”

Israeli fans: those who boycott Israel will be responsible and they have to pay

  The teenage girls are going into the army next year to harm Palestinians, and they feel “very shamed and hurt” by the allegations that the New Zealand activists blame Israel for it

Three teenage Israeli fans of the popstar Lorde have filed a lawsuit claiming thousands of pounds in “emotional injury” damages against two New-Zealand-based activists for allegedly convincing her to cancel a performance in Tel Aviv.

The case, filed by an Israeli legal rights group, appears to be the first use of a controversial law passed in 2011 that allows civil suits to be opened against those calling for a boycott against Israel.

Lorde has been criticised for cancelling the show by Israel’s culture minister, Miri Regev, and actor Roseanne Barr, among others.

Image result for roseanne barr zionist

Rosanne Barbarzio

“These girls [the teenagers] are ideologists. They are going into the army next year, and they feel very shamed and hurt by the allegations that the New Zealand activists blamed Israel for,” she said.

“They want to say on a personal and an international level, that those who boycott Israel or make a call to boycott Israel will be responsible and they have to pay,” she said, adding that agreements between the two states compelled New Zealand to enforce the ruling.