2020-10-20 20:03:31 58307490 Jewish cemeteries, Holocaust memorial desecrated in Greece Athens denounces attack that 'damages memory of our fellow citizens and all victims of Nazism'; acts of vandalism come days after leader of Greece's neo-Nazi party Golden Dawn and his inner circle receive prison sentences AFP https://www.ynetnews.com/article/Bk11twg2PD Tue, 20 Oct 2020 9:5:15 +03:00 Several Jewish cemeteries and a Holocaust memorial have been desecrated in Greece, the country's Jewish council said Monday, just days after neo-Nazi leaders were jailed in a landmark trial. A graffiti saying "With Jews you lose" was sprayed Friday onto a monument dedicated to the 50,000 Jews of Thessaloniki in northern Greece exterminated during the Holocaust, the Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece (KIS) said in a statement. The words "Death to Israel" were also discovered at the Jewish cemetery of Thessaloniki, while four tombs were vandalized in the Jewish cemetery on Rhodes island in the southeast. The acts of vandalism come after the leader of Greece's neo-Nazi party Golden Dawn and his inner circle were handed 13-year prison sentences on Wednesday. The sentences represented a major downfall for a party that had been the country's third most popular in 2015 when the trial began. In total, more than 50 defendants were convicted of crimes ranging from running a criminal organization, murder and assault, to illegal weapons possession. KIS, which represents the Jewish community in Greece, said it "condemns this new wave of vandal attacks, launched by the followers of bigotry and fanaticism." Greece's foreign ministry, meanwhile, denounced the desecration of the monument in Thessaloniki as "an unacceptable act which damages the memory of our fellow citizens and all victims of Nazism." On October 5, a Jewish cemetery had also been desecrated near Athens just two days before the verdict of the Golden Dawn trial. "Juden Raus", a phrase once used by the Nazis that means "Jews Out" in German, had been painted in black on the outside fence of the cemetery in the town of Nikaia, along with a symbol similar to the swastika used by Golden Dawn. message 58290670 Romania's Jewish State Theater explores work on Holocaust 'The Beautiful Days of My Youth' is based on the diary of Romanian Jewish Holocaust survivor Ana Novac and premiered online on October 9, the day when deportations of Romania's Jews and Roma began in 1941 Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/SJSAMYYww Sun, 18 Oct 2020 14:41:45 +03:00 The latest premiere at the Jewish State Theater in the Romanian capital, Bucharest, explores the horrors of the Holocaust via a survivor's memories of the Auschwitz and Plaszow concentration camps. Friday's debut of "The Beautiful Days of My Youth" by Romanian Jewish Holocaust survivor Ana Novac follows the National Holocaust Remembrance Day commemorations on Oct. 9, the day when deportations of Romania's Jews and Roma began in 1941. Some 280,000 Jews and 11,000 Roma were deported and killed under Romania's pro-Nazi regime during World War II. During the communist era, hundreds of thousands of Romanian Jews emigrated to Israel. The current Jewish population is around 6,000, down from 800,000 before the war. The play premiered online and in front of spectators who took up less than a third of the seats because of measures meant to slow the coronavirus pandemic in the eastern European nation. Maia Morgenstern, head of the Jewish State Theater and a Romanian Jewish actress best known for playing Mary in Mel Gibson's controversial 2004 movie "The Passion of the Christ," described the play's staging as an "all-female project." The director is a woman, Liana Ceterchi. "Each one of us is a facet of Ana Novac's soul and memory," Morgenstern said. The play's author, born Zimra Harsanyi, hails from Romania's northern Transylvania region. She was deported at age 14. The diary she kept inside a Nazi concentration camp was first published in Hungary in 1966 and later translated into several languages, but it only hit bookshelves in her home country in 2004. Many liken Kovac's work to that of Anne Frank, author of the "The Diary of a Young Girl," which documented her life in hiding in the Nazi-occupied Netherlands before she was deported to concentration camps. "We are bearers of scars from wounds that are not directly ours, but still we carry these scars," Morgenstern said. She stressed the importance of evoking events through theatrical performance "in order to underst at age 14. The diary she kept inside a Nazi concentration camp was first published in Hungary in 1966 and later translated into several languages, but it only hit bookshelves in her home country in 2004.</p> <p>Many liken Kovac's work to that of Anne Frank, author of the "The Diary of a Young Girl," which documented her life in hiding in the Nazi-occupied Netherlands before she was deported to concentration camps.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11354847> <p>"We are bearers of scars from wounds that are not directly ours, but still we carry these scars," Morgenstern said. She stressed the importance of evoking events through theatrical performance "in order to understand the ghosts of a painful past, the memories of terrible events that have split the world into executioners and victims."</p> <p>Actresses wear the striped outfits of concentration camps against a backdrop of images depicting camp entrances, gas chambers and empty sleeping quarters. Photographs and names of Holocaust victims scroll in a video over the stage and performers. Human bones and a skull are held by performers during monologues.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11354848> <p>The pandemic has had a severe impact on Romania's artistic community, triggering the closure of theaters during the lockdown. Later, theaters were allowed to hold performances only outdoors, then indoors with a limited number of spectators.</p> <p>"These are existential and also moral questions. What to do to protect life, not to be a threat but at the same time continue our existence and activity and maintain our status as artists?" Morgenstern said.</p> message 58249470 NY Jewish leaders call virus rules 'blatantly anti-Semitic' Three Jewish congregation file lawsuit against the state and Gov. Cuomo, accusing him of making negative, false, and discriminatory statements about the ultra-Orthodox community as he imposed new COVID-19 measures Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/HJXjMQUwD Thu, 15 Oct 2020 22:39:6 +03:00 Three Rockland County Jewish congregations are suing New York state and Gov. Andrew Cuomo, saying he engaged in a “streak of anti-Semitic discrimination” with a recent crackdown on religious gatherings to reduce the state’s coronavirus infection rate. The Manhattan federal court lawsuit filed late Wednesday accused the Democrat of making negative, false, and discriminatory statements about the Jewish Orthodox community as he imposed new coronavirus measures to counter the state’s rising infection rate in so-called “red zone” areas. Cuomo’s statements and actions were painful for residents in an area north of New York City where a man invaded a Hanukkah celebration in December and stabbed or slashed five people, the lawsuit said. Grafton Thomas awaits trial after pleading not guilty. The attack occurred in Monsey — near the New Jersey state line about 35 miles (56 kilometers) north of New York City — where two congregations in the new lawsuit are based. The state said six coronavirus clusters in areas comprising 2.8% of the state’s population have appeared in Brooklyn and Queens, as well as Broome, Orange and Rockland counties, necessitating the closing of schools and nonessential businesses and limits on gatherings. The new measures announced Oct. 6 have resulted in temporarily limiting the size of religious gatherings in the COVID-19 hot spots to 25% capacity, or a maximum of 10 people. The limits prompted several federal lawsuits, including two in Brooklyn and one in Albany. The latest lawsuit said Cuomo’s order was “blatantly anti-Semitic, creating religious-observance based color coded ‘hot-spot’ zones directed towards particular Jewish communities.” The lawsuit said his action “not only flagrantly flies directly in the face of scientific evidence” and a court order limiting what measures the state can take. It also “specifically singles out the Orthodox Jewish community in what has proven to be the latest extension of Governor Cuomo’s streak of anti-Semit10 people.</p> <p>The limits prompted several federal lawsuits, including two in Brooklyn and one in Albany.</p> <p>The latest lawsuit said Cuomo’s order was “blatantly anti-Semitic, creating religious-observance based color coded ‘hot-spot’ zones directed towards particular Jewish communities.”</p> <p>The lawsuit said his action “not only flagrantly flies directly in the face of scientific evidence” and a court order limiting what measures the state can take. It also “specifically singles out the Orthodox Jewish community in what has proven to be the latest extension of Governor Cuomo’s streak of anti-Semitic discrimination,” the lawsuit added.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11366954> <p>Cuomo, who has said he has “respect and love” for the Orthodox community, told reporters Thursday that he was not targeting Orthodox Jewish communities. He said red zones are based on addresses of residences where more individuals are testing positive for COVID-19.</p> <p>He blamed a lack of local government enforcement for some in the Orthodox Jewish community failing to follow COVID-19 gathering restrictions since the spring. He noted houses of worship can at least open in red zones, where non-essential businesses cannot.</p> <p>“The majority of Ultra Orthodox groups I’ve spoken with have been cooperative,” he said. “There’s a relatively small number that’s uncooperative, and just believe they should be exempt from these government operations.”</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11366955> <p>Cuomo also said it seems the spread of new infections in clusters where he imposed restrictions has leveled off somewhat, though it remains higher than in the rest of the state. And the number of New Yorkers hospitalized with the virus has dipped slightly, to 897 patients on Wednesday.</p> <p>The lawsuit comes nearly a week after an Albany federal judge cited the state’s interest in protecting public safety in ruling in the governor’s favor in a lawsuit by rabbis and synagogues that argued the restrictions were unconstitutional.</p> <p>In that lawsuit, brought by rabbis, leaders of synagogues and the national Orthodox Jewish group Agudath Israel, lawyers for Cuomo argued in court papers that “the right to practice religion freely does not include liberty to expose the community … to communicable disease.”</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11366956> <p>Those sentiments were echoed Thursday when New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, a Democrat, defended the governor’s moves hours before a hearing in a lawsuit in which the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn fought restrictions.</p> <p>He said the state was trying to stop a “full-blown second wave” like those occurring worldwide.</p> <p>“We cannot let that happen here. So if for a few weeks, we’re asking people to do something exceptional to help stop a problem from growing and stop it from spreading, I think that’s fair. And I think the court will understand,” he said.</p> <p><br></p> message 58246150 Israel honors Polish couple who hid filmmaker Polanski during WWII The late Stefania and Jan Buchala receive the Yad Vashem title of 'Righteous Among the Nations' honoring those who helped save Jews during World War II after they took in the controversial film director as a child AFP , Reuters https://www.ynetnews.com/article/HyWe50BPD Thu, 15 Oct 2020 18:38:33 +03:00 Israel on Thursday honored a Polish couple who hid Oscar-winning director Roman Polanski from the Nazis as a child, the Holocaust memorial Yad Vashem said. The late Stefania and Jan Buchala received the Yad Vashem title of "Righteous Among the Nations" for those who helped save Jews during World War II. "Despite their very difficult economic situation, the couple agreed to take in the Jewish boy as their own son, and keep him safe," Yad Vashem said. The event, hosted at the House of Memory for Upper Silesian Jews in the town of Gliwice, was shrouded in secrecy to avoid any controversy or protests linked to Polanski, who has been sought by the United States for decades on rape charges. The Buchalas' grandson accepted the medal in their name at the ceremony in southern Poland. Sister Zofia Szczygielska, a Catholic nun who helped save many Jewish children, was also posthumously honored at Thursday's ceremony. The controversial film director was just six years old when Nazi Germany invaded Poland in 1939, triggering the war and forcing the family into the Krakow Ghetto. After his father smuggled him out through the barbed wire and got friends to take him in, Polanski was shuffled around, then sent to the Buchalas. Devout Catholic peasants with three small children, they gave him shelter for nearly two years in the village of Wysoka, asking for nothing in return. Polanski's mother, Bula Katz-Przedborska, was murdered at the Nazi death camp Auschwitz. His father, Maurice Liebling, was sent to the Mathausen concentration camp, which he survived. The now 87-year-old French-Polish director of "Chinatown" and "Rosemary's Baby" recalled their "astounding" kindness in his autobiography, calling Stefania "strong", "energetic" and "sensitive". 'Heroic' grandparents Polanski had tried for years to track down the family to thank them - to no avail. Both Buchalas died in 1953 and the village had no news of the children. It was only in 2017 that Polanski came face to face withanski's mother, Bula Katz-Przedborska, was murdered at the Nazi death camp Auschwitz. His father, Maurice Liebling, was sent to the Mathausen concentration camp, which he survived.</p> <p>The now 87-year-old French-Polish director of "Chinatown" and "Rosemary's Baby" recalled their "astounding" kindness in his autobiography, calling Stefania "strong", "energetic" and "sensitive".</p> <h3 class = "pHeader">'Heroic' grandparents</h3> <p>Polanski had tried for years to track down the family to thank them - to no avail. Both Buchalas died in 1953 and the village had no news of the children.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11282360> <p>It was only in 2017 that Polanski came face to face with their grandson thanks to some detective work from the filmmakers behind "Polanski, Horowitz".</p> <p>Due out next year, the documentary recounts the childhood years of Polanski and his lifelong friend and fellow Holocaust survivor, photographer Ryszard Horowitz.</p> <p>Producer Anna Kokoszka-Romer recounted the first meeting between Stanislaw Buchala and Polanski when the grandson showed the director old photos.</p> <p>"Polanski was moved. As for Stanislaw Buchala, you could see his joy at finally getting to learn more about his family," she told AFP.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11282361> <p>His late father Ludwik had talked about growing up with a "brother" who moved to the U.S. after the war. Little did he know that his childhood playmate became filmmaker Roman Polanski.</p> <p>Stanislaw, who is in his 60s, told the filmmakers he was proud of his "heroic" grandparents.</p> <p>"People should know, especially now during the pandemic, that a person can do something selfless for another."</p> <p>In his testimony to Yad Vashem, Polanski said Stefania Buchala "provided me with shelter, risking her own life and that of her family."</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11282362> <p>The stakes were high. In occupied Poland, even offering Jews a glass of water was punishable by death.</p> <p>Poland, which lost six million citizens - half of them Jewish - during the war, has the most "Righteous Among the Nations" of any country, at more than 7,000 individuals.</p> <h3 class = "pHeader">For the rescuers</h3> <p>The filmmaker lives in France, as he is persona non grata in Hollywood and cannot return to the United States for fear of arrest.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11282363> <p>Polanski pleaded guilty to unlawful sex with a minor in California in 1977, in a plea deal after he was accused of raping a 13-year-old girl. He fled the U.S. before sentencing.</p> <p>Several other women have accused him in recent years of sexual misconduct, all of which he has denied.&nbsp;</p> <p>Despite the allegations, Polanski won an Oscar in 2003 for directing World War Two drama "The Pianist" as well as a best director award at France's Cesar Awards in February that caused several women to walk out in protest.&nbsp;</p> <p>The director of Yad Vashem's Righteous Among the Nations department, Joel Zisenwine, said "the award is given to the rescuers, not the survivor".</p> <p>"It is about what they did in real time, risking their lives to save a nine-year-old child," he told AFP.</p> <p>"Nobody of course has any way of knowing what happens to people as adults. It has nothing to do with that."</p> message 58239460 Most U.S. ultra-Orthodox Jews support Trump - Haredi poll shows Democratic nominee Joe Biden received only 13% of support according to the Ami Magazine poll; survey suggests a deep divide in the US Jewish community, with a separate survey published by Pew Research on Tuesday suggesting 70 percent of US Jews support Biden. i24NEWS https://www.ynetnews.com/article/SkrFpUrwD Thu, 15 Oct 2020 8:52:20 +03:00 An overwhelming majority of the US Orthodox Jews support the re-election of US President Donald Trump, a poll revealed Wednesday. According to a survey by Ami Magazine - a Haredi publication, some 83 percent of the respondents said they were going to vote for Trump in the November 3 vote. Trump's rival, Democratic nominee Joe Biden, only got 13 percent of the Orthodox vote, with four percent still undecided. The poll also found that the US Orthodox Jews overwhelmingly consider the way Trump is being covered in the media to be unfair -- a position shared by 76 percent of responders. The survey suggests a deep divide in the US Jewish community, with a separate survey published by Pew Research on Tuesday suggesting that some 70 percent of US Jews are supporting Biden. In Israel, for its part, Trump has more support, with an exclusive poll by Direct Polls conducted for i24NEWS showing that 64 percent of Israelis view the current US leader as being better for the Jewish state. In 2016, Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton secured 71 percent of the Jewish vote, and in 2012, Barack Obama had the backing of 69 percent of US Jews. message 58234250 TikTok vows in Knesset to tackle anti-Semitism After abstaining from previous Knesset discussions on surge of anti-Semitism online and facing accusations of ignoring the phenomenon on the platform, TikTok official suggests app be used as tool to increase awareness of the horrors of the Holocaust and Holocaust studies Itamer Eichner, Tal Shahaf https://www.ynetnews.com/article/ByFsYqNvw Wed, 14 Oct 2020 22:24:51 +03:00 Representatives of the popular social media app TikTok vowed on Wednesday to tackle anti-Semitism post shared by their users Knesset held a series of discussions in recent months over the surge of anti-Semitism on the internet, inviting representatives of several prominent social media networks - namely Facebook, Google and Twitter - to discuss different ways to tackle the phenomenon. After not sending any representative to speak on its behalf in previous meetings and facing accusations of ignoring the spread of anti-Semitic content on the platform, a TikTok official joined a meeting of Knesset's Aliyah, Absorption and Diaspora Committee on Wednesday. During the discussion, Blue & White MK Michal Kotler-Wunsch spoke of a disturbing trend on the app called the “Holocaust Challenge”, in which young people pretend to be Holocaust victims in heaven, wearing makeup that imitates burns or bruises while explaining how they died in Nazi-run death camps. Kotler-Wunsch implored TikTok to adopt and apply the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance's (IHRA) definition of anti-Semitism - which includes the use of Holocaust denial, as well as de-legitimization, demonization and dual morality towards Israel and drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis - and mark anti-Semitic content accordingly." Following the accusations, TikTok Director of Policy and Government Relations Elizabeth Kanter suggested that the app be used as a tool to increase awareness of the horrors of the Holocaust and Holocaust studies. "Anti-Semitism is a heinous thing, and anti-Semitic content that expresses hatred has no place on our platform,” Kanter said. “We have zero tolerance for organized hate groups and those associated with them. Our community rules reflect our values - and we act when they are violated, including removing content and closing accounts." Kanter stressed that TikTok’s hate policy is reviewed regularly to identify trends or activities that violatment Relations Elizabeth Kanter suggested that the app be used as a tool to increase awareness of the horrors of the Holocaust and Holocaust studies.</p> <p>"Anti-Semitism is a heinous thing, and anti-Semitic content that expresses hatred has no place on our platform,” Kanter said. “We have zero tolerance for organized hate groups and those associated with them. Our community rules reflect our values - and we act when they are violated, including removing content and closing accounts."</p> <p>Kanter stressed that TikTok’s hate policy is reviewed regularly to identify trends or activities that violate the rules in advance.</p> <p>"TikTok collaborates regularly with non-governmental organizations and leading bodies in Israel and the European Union, such as Yad Vashem, the World Jewish Congress and the Holocaust Educational Foundation, to proactively promote educational content about the Holocaust and the dangers of anti-Semitism,” she said.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11306031> <p>Knesset Aliyah, Absorption and Diaspora Committee Chairman David Bitan praised the platform's initiative and called on more companies to adopt a similar stance against anti-Semitism.</p> <p>Twitter Director of Policy in Israel Ronen Costello, said that the company initiated talks with several Israeli government officials and international organizations regarding monitoring anti-Semitism on the platform and training volunteers to spot such content.</p> <p>Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced on Monday the company will ban posts that deny or distort the Holocaust and will start directing people to authoritative sources if they search for information about the Nazi genocide.</p> message 58229910 Germany frees up millions in aid to Holocaust survivors amid pandemic Following negotiations with Berlin, Claims Conference agrees to pay $662 million to more than 240,000 survivors around the world to help ease coronavirus burden; German government expands eligibility to Romanian, Bulgarian survivors Associated Press, Ynet https://www.ynetnews.com/article/rJaElUNww Wed, 14 Oct 2020 15:40:33 +03:00 Germany has agreed to provide more than a half billion euros to aid Holocaust survivors struggling under the burdens of the coronavirus pandemic, the organization that negotiates compensation with the German government said Wednesday. The payments will be going to approximately 240,000 survivors around the world, primarily in Israel, North America, the former Soviet Union and Western Europe, over the next two years, according to the New York-based Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany, also referred to as the Claims Conference. Each of those survivors will receive two payments of 1,200 euros ($1,400) over the next two years, for an overall commitment of approximately 564 million euros ($662 million) to some of the poorest survivors alive today. The funds come on top of an emergency $4.3 million the Claims Conference distributed in the spring to agencies providing care for survivors. In addition to the coronavirus-related funds, Germany agreed in the recently concluded round of annual negotiations to increase funding for social welfare services for survivors by 30.5 million euros ($36 million), to a total of 554.5 million ($651 million) for 2021, the Claims Conference said. The money is used for services including funding in-home care for more than 83,000 Holocaust survivors and assisting more than 70,000 with other vital services, including food, medicine, transportation to doctors and programs to alleviate social isolation. The payments are set to go into effect starting December 1. According to the Claims Conference, "the pandemic has adversely affected the elderly, and survivors have faced an onslaught of health, emotional, and financial hurdles." "A significant population of survivors, especially those in the former Soviet Union, live in poverty, and the coronavirus has only exacerbated their economic situation. "These additional funds will assist survivors in battling the dramatic rise in the cost of groceries and other necessities. Ao alleviate social isolation.&nbsp;</p> <p>The payments are set to go into effect starting December 1.&nbsp;</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11250673> <p>According to the Claims Conference, "the pandemic has adversely affected the elderly, and survivors have faced an onslaught of health, emotional, and financial hurdles."&nbsp;</p> <p>"A significant population of survivors, especially those in the former Soviet Union, live in poverty, and the coronavirus has only exacerbated their economic situation.&nbsp;</p> <p>"These additional funds will assist survivors in battling the dramatic rise in the cost of groceries and other necessities. Alongside additional delivery fees for survivors who are advised to remain at home, and the extra cost of personal protective equipment, these supplemental payments will ease their burden in these trying times."&nbsp;</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11250674> <p>According to Minister for Social Equality Mirav Cohen, some 90,000 Holocaust survivors in Israel already receive a yearly stipend of NIS 4,000.</p> <p>"We are at the peak of the coronavirus pandemic, which particularly hurts the elderly and the Holocaust survivors among them," she said. "What has been achieved in the negotiations between the Claims Conference and the German government is a tremendous success which will aid those dear to us and I thank the German government for its cooperation."</p> <p>The German government also agreed to expand its criteria and include over 3,000 survivors from Romania and Bulgaria following reports on "open ghettos" in both countries during World War II by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington and Yad Vashem in Jerusalem. &nbsp;</p> message 58226450 Poll: 70% of American Jews say they plan to vote for Joe Biden Survey by Pew also finds that only 35% of U.S. Jewry are happy with Donald Trump's policy; numbers show slight advantage for Biden with majority of Jews, Hispanic Catholics, Black Protestants and non-religious voters supporting him i24NEWS https://www.ynetnews.com/article/HkyVzG4Pv Wed, 14 Oct 2020 10:33:20 +03:00 An overwhelming majority of American-Jewish voters are planning to vote for Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden in the upcoming U.S. election, according to a new Pew Research poll released on Tuesday. Some 70% of U.S. Jews said that Biden, who is currently leading U.S. President Donald Trump by double digits in most national polls, is their preferred candidate ahead of the November 3 national vote. According to Pew, the Jewish vote is expected to reflect the results of the 2016 presidential elections, in which 71% of American Jews voted for Hillary Clinton as opposed to only 25% for Trump. In 2012 elections, the Republican candidate Mitt Romney pulled over 30% of the Jewish vote as opposed to 69% won by Barack Obama. The survey results are a blow to Jewish Republicans, who were optimistic that given Trump's pro-Israel stance, a larger chunk of the Jewish vote would have been swayed towards him. The Pew poll also found that only 35% of American Jews are happy with Trump's policies. Overall, Pew found that 52% of Americans overall prefer Biden while 42% prefer Trump. A large majority of Jews, Hispanic Catholics, Black Protestants and non-religious voters support Joe Biden, while most white Christians, and especially the vast majority of evangelicals, support Trump. message 58205480 Lives Lost: London rabbi worked to end community’s isolation Rabbi Avrohom Pinter from Stamford Hill, Europe’s largest ultra-Orthodox community founded by Jews fleeing pogroms in Russia, went door-to-door to deliver public health warnings about COVID; within days he caught the virus himself and died Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/HyBzDpGDv Tue, 13 Oct 2020 9:29:37 +03:00 EDITOR’S NOTE: This is part of an ongoing series of stories remembering people who have died from the coronavirus around the world. Rabbi Avrohom Pinter gave his life to save his neighbors. When the British government ordered a lockdown to slow the spread of coronavirus, Pinter went door-to-door in northeast London to deliver the public health warning to the ultra-Orthodox Jews in his community. Within days, the 71-year-old rabbi had caught COVID-19 and died. His sacrifice was just the last chapter of a life spent forging links between the often-isolated community in Stamford Hill and wider British society, whether by working with an Anglican priest to build a community center or visiting the local mosque to grieve when a gunman killed 51 Muslims in New Zealand. “He served as a bridge in a broader sense,″ said Chaya Spitz, a protege of Pinter’s and CEO of an umbrella organization for Orthodox Jewish charities. “What he did around COVID was typical of his approach more generally.” The path to becoming a rabbi respected by non-Jews wasn’t easy for a man who grew up in Stamford Hill in the 1950s and ’60s. Europe’s largest ultra-Orthodox community was founded by Jews fleeing pogroms in Russia, and it grew with the addition of ones who escaped Germany’s Nazis during World War II. The experience of anti-Semitism left many Stamford Hill residents suspicious of authority: they paid taxes but sought nothing in return. Pinter believed total self-segregation was a mistake, especially when it came to education. He became active in the community, waded into politics and won a seat on the local government council as a member of the Labour Party in 1982. But his vocation was improving educational opportunities for Orthodox Jewish girls. Pinter and his wife, Rachel, were instrumental in building up the Yesodey Hatorah Senior Girls School. He was the principal and she set the academic trends, introducing the concept of students sitting for a broad range of advanced exams and str sought nothing in return.</p> <p>Pinter believed total self-segregation was a mistake, especially when it came to education.</p> <p>He became active in the community, waded into politics and won a seat on the local government council as a member of the Labour Party in 1982.</p> <p>But his vocation was improving educational opportunities for Orthodox Jewish girls. Pinter and his wife, Rachel, were instrumental in building up the Yesodey Hatorah Senior Girls School. He was the principal and she set the academic trends, introducing the concept of students sitting for a broad range of advanced exams and striving for excellence.</p> <p>He saw an opportunity when Labour’s Tony Blair became prime minister in 1997. Pinter decided to apply for government funding for his school, even if it meant Yesodey Hatorah would have to follow the national curriculum.</p> <p>Pinter was harangued on the streets and posters went up calling him a traitor, despite winning 14 million pounds to build a state of the art high school.</p> <p>“For many in the Orthodox community, this was the beginning of the end — we’ve now involved the state in education of our children,” Shimon Cohen, a longtime friend of the rabbi, recalled. “This was going to be a disaster.”</p> <p>The disagreement continues even now.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11213270> <p>The most recent report from the U.K.’s Office for Standards in Education rated Yesodey Hatorah’s students as above average in the subjects they study, but judged the school itself “inadequate” because the curriculum is too narrow.</p> <p>For instance, students aren’t taught about human reproduction because the Orthodox community believes the topic is one best handled at home.</p> <p>The critique showed Pinter’s dilemma. While some in his Jewish community considered him a dangerous modernist, many in the broader society saw him as a crazy extremist, Cohen said.</p> <p>“But he went off with a bright smile, saying that as he was upsetting everybody, he must be doing something right,” Cohen said. “We have a phrase — ‘I dance at everybody’s wedding.’ He managed to navigate all communities. That was his greatness.”</p> <p>Pinter found common ground with local Muslim leaders, working with them to ensure that food served at local hospitals and jails met the strict kosher and halal rules of their faiths.</p> <p>And when the fighting in Syria sent refugees streaming across Europe in 2016, Pinter joined a group of faith leaders on a fact-finding mission to a makeshift refugee camp in Calais, in northern France.</p> <p>After seeing the situation for himself, Pinter went back to London and raised 5,000 pounds ($6,500) for the migrants. Their faith didn’t matter. Their humanity did.</p> <p>“His ability to show how much he cared was remarkable,” said Mustafa Field, director of Faiths Forum for London, which organized the trip to France. “His ability to sit down in a tent with refugees — it wasn’t a clean place. But he was able to connect at that level and listen.’’</p> <p>And he did it while holding fast to his own identity as an Orthodox Jew.</p> <p>He wore the broad-brimmed hat, black coat and beard dictated by the ultra-Orthodox. He met people for tea, but brought his own teabag to ensure he kept strictly kosher. And when Prime Minister Theresa May extended her hand in greeting, he whipped off his hat, held it in both hands and joked about his “strange monastic order” so as not to embarrass her by refusing to shake hands.</p> <p>While on these outreach missions in later years, Pinter often talked about how he grieved for his wife, who died in 2014. He decided to read the entire Talmud in her memory and believed he might see her again after his own death, according to friend Maurice Glasman, a member of Britain’s House of Lords.</p> <p>“When he died I thought, ‘That’s Rabbi Pinter, at least he could look at his wife and say that he did his homework,’″ Glasman said.</p> <p><br></p> message 58195450 Haredi NYC virus lockdown protest leader arrested on riot charge Man taken into custody after video surfaces showing crowd, egged on by him, surrounding, jostling and taunting Jewish Insider journalist who has been reporting on resistance to social distancing in Borough Park neighborhood Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/BkBDWJzDP Mon, 12 Oct 2020 18:0:30 +03:00 A leader of protests against new coronavirus restrictions in Brooklyn has been arrested on charges of inciting people to riot and unlawful imprisonment of a journalist who was chased and trapped by a crowd, police said. Heshy Tischler, a City Council candidate and activist in the Orthodox Jewish neighborhood of Borough Park, was taken into custody Sunday evening in connection with his actions during an Oct. 7 street protest. Video shows a crowd of men, egged on by Tischler, surrounding, jostling and taunting Jewish Insider journalist Jacob Kornbluh, who has been reporting on resistance to social distancing in the neighborhood. Tischler, who was not wearing a mask, can be seen screaming in Kornbluh's face. Kornbluh, who is also an Orthodox Jew, said he was struck and kicked during the incident. Tischler called his arrest a "political stunt" on Twitter. He has said he believed his interactions with Kornbluh were protected by the First Amendment. In another act of intimidation, several dozen men gathered outside the reporter's apartment late Sunday to protest Tischler's arrest. Large protests erupted in Borough Park last week after Governor Andrew Cuomo announced new restrictions on schools, businesses and houses of worship in areas where coronavirus infection rates have increased. The majority of the areas facing lockdowns are home to large Orthodox Jewish populations, and religious leaders have complained of being singled out. The spike in cases coincided with the back-to-back Jewish holidays in late September. Cuomo said Sunday that the so-called cluster areas contain 2.8% of the state's population, yet have had 17.6% of all positive confirmed cases reported this past week. The Democratic governor urged people living in those areas to abide by the restrictions even though the new rules ban large gatherings in synagogues. Tischler has led some of the opposition, cutting the chains off playgrounds in the spring after they were ordered closed by the state and r religious leaders have complained of being singled out. The spike in cases coincided with the back-to-back Jewish holidays in late September.</p> <p>Cuomo said Sunday that the so-called cluster areas contain 2.8% of the state's population, yet have had 17.6% of all positive confirmed cases reported this past week.</p> <p>The Democratic governor urged people living in those areas to abide by the restrictions even though the new rules ban large gatherings in synagogues.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11236619> <p>Tischler has led some of the opposition, cutting the chains off playgrounds in the spring after they were ordered closed by the state and recently disrupting a news conference by the head of the city's hospital system.</p> message 58195100 Facebook says it will ban Holocaust denial, distortion posts Announcement by social media giant is latest attempt to take action against conspiracy theories and misinformation ahead of the U.S. presidential election following widespread protest by Jewish organizations and Holocaust survivors Associated Press, Ynet https://www.ynetnews.com/article/HJSbrkGDv Mon, 12 Oct 2020 17:45:21 +03:00 Facebook will ban posts that deny or distort the Holocaust and will start directing people to authoritative sources if they search for information about the Nazi genocide, the company's CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced on Monday. The new policy is the latest attempt by the company to take action against conspiracy theories and misinformation ahead of the U.S. presidential election. Zuckerberg said in a blog post Monday he believes the new policy strikes the “right balance” in drawing the lines between what is and isn’t acceptable speech. “I’ve struggled with the tension between standing for free expression and the harm caused by minimizing or denying the horror of the Holocaust,” he wrote. “My own thinking has evolved as I’ve seen data showing an increase in anti-Semitic violence, as have our wider policies on hate speech.” The decision comes amid a push by Holocaust survivors around the world over the summer who lent their voices to a campaign targeting Zuckerberg, urging him to take action to remove Holocaust denial posts from the social media site. Coordinated by the New York-based Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany, the #NoDenyingIt campaign used Facebook itself to make the survivors' entreaties to Zuckerberg heard, posting one video per day urging him to remove Holocaust-denying groups, pages and posts as hate speech. Zuckerberg raised the ire of the Claims Conference and others with comments in 2018 to the tech website Recode, saying that posts denying the Nazi annihilation of 6 million Jews would not necessarily be removed. He said he did not think Holocaust deniers were “intentionally” getting it wrong, and that as long as posts were not calling for harm or violence, even offensive content should be protected. After an outcry, Zuckerberg, who is Jewish himself, clarified that while he personally found “Holocaust denial deeply offensive” he believed that “the best way to fight offensive bad speech is with good speech.” Several Holocaust dClaims Conference and others with comments in 2018 to the tech website Recode, saying that posts denying the Nazi annihilation of 6 million Jews would not necessarily be removed. He said he did not think Holocaust deniers were “intentionally” getting it wrong, and that as long as posts were not calling for harm or violence, even offensive content should be protected.</p> <p>After an outcry, Zuckerberg, who is Jewish himself, clarified that while he personally found “Holocaust denial deeply offensive” he believed that “the best way to fight offensive bad speech is with good speech.”</p> <p>Several Holocaust denial groups have been identified on Facebook by the New York-based Anti-Defamation League, some hidden and most private.</p> <p>On one, “Real World War 2 History,” administrators are clearly aware of the fine line between what is and isn’t allowed, listing among its rules that members must “avoid posts that feature grotesque cartoons that FB censors can construe as racist or hateful.”</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11177468> <p>Another page, the “Committee for Open Debate on the Holocaust,” features regular posts of revisionist videos, including one from February in which the commentator says the Zyklon B gas used to kill Jews in Nazi death camps was actually employed to kill the lice that spread typhus, claiming “this chemical was used to improve the inmates’ health and reduce, not increase, camp mortality.”</p> <p>The move to ban Holocaust denial quickly won praise from Jewish groups and individuals such as the American Jewish Committee (AJC).&nbsp;</p> <p>“Facebook’s decision to ban Holocaust denial and distortion postings is profoundly significant,” said AJC CEO David Harris. “With knowledge of the systematic Nazi murder of six million Jews waning in the United States and around the world, particularly among young people, the power and credibility of Facebook are vital to preserving the facts of the most documented genocide in history, and helping maintain message 58194700 American Jewish economist shares Nobel for auction theory work Award given jointly to Stanford professor Paul Milgrom and U.S. colleague Robert Wilson for their work understanding value and bidding; Milgrom is the third Jew to win the prestigious prize this year Reuters https://www.ynetnews.com/article/ry2HtA11wP Mon, 12 Oct 2020 17:8:9 +03:00 U.S. academics Paul Milgrom and Robert Wilson won the 2020 Nobel Economics on Monday for work on auctions hailed as benefiting buyers and sellers around the world of everything from fishing quotas to aircraft landing slots. Among the insights of the two Stanford University economists is an explanation of how bidders seek to avoid the so-called "winner's curse" of over-paying, and what happens when bidders gain a better understanding of their rivals' sense of value. "Auctions are everywhere and affect our everyday lives. This year's Economic Sciences Laureates, Paul Milgrom and Robert Wilson, have improved auction theory and invented new auction formats, benefiting sellers, buyers and taxpayers around the world," the Nobel Prize's official website tweeted. Milgrom was born in Detroit to Jewish parents. He became the Shirley and Leonard Ely Professor of Humanities and Sciences at Stanford University, and frequently lectures at Israeli universities. He is the third Jewish laureate of 2020, with Harvey Alter sharing the Medicine prize and Louise Glück winning the Literature award. He and Wilson notably came up with formats for selling interrelated items simultaneously. In 1994, U.S. authorities used one of their auction designs to sell radio frequencies to telecom operators, a move since copied in other countries. Wilson showed that rational bidders tend to place bids below their own best estimate of what he called the "common value" - that is, when the value of an item is deemed to be the same for everyone - for fear of paying too much. Milgrom complemented that with theories on "private values", when the perceived value of something differs from bidder to bidder. He demonstrated that an auction format will give the seller higher expected revenue when bidders learn more about each other's estimated values during the bidding process. Speaking to reporters in Stockholm by phone after learning of his win, Wilson struggled to think of an auction he himself had particigns to sell radio frequencies to telecom operators, a move since copied in other countries.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11174552> <p>Wilson showed that rational bidders tend to place bids below their own best estimate of what he called the "common value" - that is, when the value of an item is deemed to be the same for everyone - for fear of paying too much.</p> <p>Milgrom complemented that with theories on "private values", when the perceived value of something differs from bidder to bidder.</p> <p>He demonstrated that an auction format will give the seller higher expected revenue when bidders learn more about each other's estimated values during the bidding process.</p> <p>Speaking to reporters in Stockholm by phone after learning of his win, Wilson struggled to think of an auction he himself had participated in. But then added: “My wife points out to me that we bought ski boots on eBay. I guess that was an auction.”</p> <p>The economics prize, won by such luminaries as Paul Krugman and Milton Friedman in the past, was the final of the six awards in 2020, a year in which the Nobels have been overshadowed by the COVID-19 pandemic.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11174553> <p>The traditional gala winners' dinner in December has been canceled and other parts of the celebrations are being held digitally to avoid the risk of spreading the infection.</p> <p>The Nobel prizes for medicine, physics, chemistry, literature and peace were handed out last week.</p> <p>The 10-million-Swedish-crown ($1.14 million) economics prize is not one of the original five awards created in the 1895 will of industrialist and dynamite inventor Alfred Nobel, but was established by Sweden's central bank and first awarded in 1969.</p> <p>The Norwegian Nobel Committee plans to go ahead with an award ceremony, albeit in a reduced format due to the coronavirus pandemic, in Oslo on Dec. 10, the anniversary of the death of Alfred Nobel.</p> message 58174680 Lithuania city celebrates Jewish past, honors Israeli poet Kaunas unveils a mural of prolific writer Leah Goldberg and her influence on the town's history and culture, nearly 85 years after she left with her family to immigrate to Israel Ynet https://www.ynetnews.com/article/SJQc5Ygwv Sun, 11 Oct 2020 17:40:59 +03:00 Kaunas, Lithuania's second-biggest city, is set to be crowned the Cultural Capital of Europe in 2022. In the meantime, the city has begun to celebrate this illustrious new title with a weekend festival dedicated to the town's Jewish heritage. In honor of these festivities, three massive murals representing the city's most famous and influential Jewish residences are all set to be unveiled. Kaunas, known in Yiddish as Kovno, was home to over 30,000 Jews, 25% of the city's population on the eve of World War II. The city was also known around Europe for the important Jewish cultural and educational institutions that resided within it. Following the Holocaust, nearly all of the city's Jewish community perished, with only 2,000 recorded survivors. One of the murals is of the prolific Israeli poet Leah Goldberg, painted on a building in the central Kaustono Street, where her family resided before immigrating to Israel in 1935. The mural, done by the young Lithuanian artist Linas Kaziulionis, measures 15 by 10 meters and includes an image of Goldberg along with her poem "Oren" (Pine) in Hebrew and Lithuanian. At the unveiling ceremony, organized by the Israeli embassy in Lithuania, several of Goldberg's poems were read in Hebrew and Lithuanian by Bella Shirin, an Israeli living in Kaunas. Israel's envoy to Lithuania, Yossi Levi, said: "If the great poet Leah Goldberg, who her whole life missed this beautiful city, was able to see her face looking at her on the street where she resided as a young woman - she would have felt enormous joy." message 58167250 UK education sec. slams universities for 'dragging their feet' on anti-Semitism Williamson criticizes 'lack of willingness' on academia's side to confront phenomenon head-on and says will act if 'overwhelming majority of institutions' does not adopt IHRA definition of anti-Semitism by Christmas i24NEWS https://www.ynetnews.com/article/BJ5GcIxww Sun, 11 Oct 2020 13:41:1 +03:00 United Kingdom Education Secretary Gavin Williamson has accused Britain's universities of not doing enough to stamp out anti-Semitism on campus, urging them to adopt new guidelines or risk losing government funding. In a letter made public on Friday, Williamson said that universities across the UK were either “dragging their feet” in responding to anti-Jewish bigotry on campus or "lack the willingness" to confront the phenomenon head-on. "It is frankly disturbing that so many are dragging their feet on the matter of anti-Semitism," the letter reads. "The repugnant belief that anti-Semitism is somehow a less serious, or more acceptable, form of racism has taken insidious hold in some parts of British society." One suggestion Williamson offered was that universities adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) definition of anti-Semitism. "If universities ignore the issue, I have asked officials to consider options e.g. directing the Office for Students to impose a new registration condition or suspending funding," he later posted in a tweet. According to The Times of Israel citing freedom of information request filed by the UK's Union of Jewish Students, just 29 of the 133 schools of higher education have adopted the definition. Another 80 institutions said that they have no plans to adopt the IHRA whatsoever. Some academics fear that signing on to the IHRA will abridge freedom of speech and curtail institutional independence, especially criticism of Israel and its policies regarding Palestinian Arabs. The IHRA defines anti-Semitism as "a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of anti-Semitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.” Williamson also stressed in his letter that the “government has zero-tolerance toward anti-Semitism. “If I have not seen the overwhelmin signing on to the IHRA will abridge freedom of speech and curtail institutional independence, especially criticism of Israel and its policies regarding Palestinian Arabs.&nbsp;</p> <p>The IHRA defines anti-Semitism as "a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of anti-Semitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.”</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11150238> <p>Williamson also stressed in his letter that the “government has zero-tolerance toward anti-Semitism.</p> <p>“If I have not seen the overwhelming majority of institutions adopting the definition by Christmas then I will act,” he said.</p> <p><br></p> <p><strong>Printed with permission from </strong><a href="https://www.i24news.tv/en" class="bluelink" style=""><strong>i24NEWS</strong></a><strong>.</strong></p> message 58143690 Israel to ‘immediately’ bring over 2,000 Ethiopian Jews Netanyahu tells Ethiopian PM the Jewish state is committed to 'continued aliyah of Jews to Israel' that was halted due to coronavirus; Jews are often referred to in Ethiopia as 'Falashas,' a derogatory word which translates as 'strangers' Associated Press, Ynet https://www.ynetnews.com/article/SJIBgGyPP Sat, 10 Oct 2020 13:55:12 +03:00 Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has told his Ethiopian counterpart that his country has the intention to “immediately” bring over some 2,000 Ethiopian Jews. The announcement came Friday after a phone call with Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed. Netanyahu’s office said the decision comes “out of his commitment to the continued aliyah of Jews to Israel." Some 13,000 Ethiopian Jews are in the capital, Addis Ababa, and in Gondar, most of them waiting to be taken to Israel, which they call home. Most live in dire conditions and have threatened to stage a hunger strike if they’re not allowed to travel to their “homeland.” Many say they have family members who have settled in Israel. “Some 250 people have left for Israel within the past year until COVID-19 came. Now the travel has stopped, but Israeli officials are conducting interviews online,” Nigusie Alemu Eyasu, program director for the Ethiopian Jews Community, said. "Six months ago, the prime minister and I, pledged to the Ethiopian community that we will continue the aliyah from Ethiopia," said Likud MK Gadi Yevarkan, who is of Ehiopian descent. "I thank you on behalf of the community for the continued aliyah." Activists say Israel’s government in 2015 pledged to bring the remaining Ethiopian Jews to Israel. In 1991 while Ethiopia was in the midst of civil war, Israel carried out the dramatic Operation Solomon, airlifting out some 14,500 Ethiopian Jews in less than two days. Ethiopian Jews are often referred to in Ethiopia as “Falashas,” a derogatory word which translates into “strangers” or “migrants.” message 58128510 Jewish Democratic Council targets Trump with 'Kaddish' advert JDCA ad, part of a larger campaign of liberal faith groups, juxtaposes president's words minimizing impact of coronavirus with sacred Jewish prayer of mourning, as on-screen images show the mounting U.S. death toll from the pandemic Associated Press, Ynet https://www.ynetnews.com/article/B1dGHYnUv Thu, 08 Oct 2020 18:32:8 +03:00 A $250,000 digital push by the Jewish Democratic Council of America looks to focus swing-state Jewish voters’ attention on U.S. Donald Trump’s handling of the coronavirus with a hard-hitting new advert. The ad, part of a larger campaign, juxtaposes Trump’s words minimizing the virus’ impact with Kaddish, the sacred Jewish prayer of mourning, as on-screen numbers show the mounting U.S. death toll from the coronavirus, which has claimed at least 210,000 American lives. The video shows a man placing stones on a grave, as in the Jewish tradition. American Jews are traditionally strong supporters of the Democratic party. Pew polling showed that 71% of the U.S. Jewish community voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016 and just 24% voted for Trump. While Trump’s campaign has tried to appeal to Jewish voters by touting his record on Israel, including moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem and recognizing the city as the capital, backers of Democratic nominee Joe Biden see the pandemic and other domestic issues as more potent drivers of Jewish support for the party's ticket this fall. “The Jewish community is in mourning due to the devastating loss of human life from the coronavirus, and many of us are saying Kaddish," JDCA chairman and former Florida congressman Ron Klein said in a statement, the Cleveland Jewish News reported. "Each Saturday, my father and I attended shul together until he contracted and succumbed to the virus a few months ago,” he said. “The Jewish community in South Florida, including my own family, has been deeply impacted by this devastating disease. The magnitude of this tragedy could have been avoided.” The ad came under fierce criticism from the Republican Jewish Coalition, which branded it "a big zero." “This ad does nothing to win over undecided voters; it’s awful," RJC chief Matt Brooks told the Jewish News Syndicate. "If a voter already feels Trump mishandled the virus, then they’re already voting for Biden… couple that with the fact that d former Florida congressman Ron Klein said in a statement, the Cleveland Jewish News reported.&nbsp;</p> <p>"Each Saturday, my father and I attended shul together until he contracted and succumbed to the virus a few months ago,” he said.&nbsp;</p> <p>“The Jewish community in South Florida, including my own family, has been deeply impacted by this devastating disease. The magnitude of this tragedy could have been avoided.”&nbsp;</p> <p>The ad came under fierce criticism from the Republican Jewish Coalition, which branded it "a big zero."&nbsp;</p> <p>“This ad does nothing to win over undecided voters; it’s awful," RJC chief Matt Brooks told the Jewish News Syndicate.&nbsp;</p> <p>"If a voter already feels Trump mishandled the virus, then they’re already voting for Biden… couple that with the fact that they aren’t spending any money on it, and it all adds up to a big zero.”</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11111794> <p>The president is currently battling his own bout of COVID-19, as are many in his administration, including senior aides Kellyanne Conway and Stephen Miller, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany, Trump's body man Nick Luna, and GOP senators Mike Lee, Thom Tillis and Ron Johnson. &nbsp;</p> <p>The Council is part of new efforts by three liberal groups aimed at souring religious voters on Trump ahead of next month’s election, fresh signs of growing left-leaning investment in courting that sector even as Trump’s campaign works to consolidate his devout conservative base.</p> <p>And another digital ad from the New Moral Majority PAC featuring left-leaning pastors urges “every single soul to get to the polls” and support Biden.</p> <p>The projects include $625,000 in partnerships formed by leading Democratic super PAC Priorities USA with the three faith groups.&nbsp;</p> <p>Together the initiatives pale in comparison with spending by conservative Christian groups during this campaign, such as the $50 million in get-out-the-vote spending by the evange message 58126820 Jewish American poet Louise Glück wins Nobel literature prize The Nobel Committee praises the 77-year-old writer for her 'unmistakable poetic voice that with austere beauty makes individual existence universal'; New York-born English professor is the first U.S. winner since 2016 Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/HknZ0u2Uv Thu, 08 Oct 2020 15:5:34 +03:00 Jewish American poet Louise Glück won the Nobel Prize in Literature on Thursday for her “candid and uncompromising” work, becoming the first U.S. winner since Bob Dylan in 2016. The Nobel Committee praised the writer “for her unmistakable poetic voice that with austere beauty makes individual existence universal.” The prize was announced in Stockholm by Mats Malm, the permanent secretary of the Swedish Academy. New York-born Glück, 77, who is a professor of English at Yale University, made her debut in 1968 with “Firstborn,” and “was soon acclaimed as one of the most prominent poets in American contemporary literature,” the Nobel Academy said. Anders Olsson, chairman of the Nobel literature committee, said Glück’s 12 collections of poetry were “characterized by striving for clarity.” They include “Descending Figure,” “The Triumph of Achilles” and “Ararat.” Olsson said her verses, which often draw on classical influences and examine family life, were marked by an “austere but also playful intelligence and a refined sense of composition”. He said her voice was “candid and uncompromising” and often marked by biting wit. The committee noted her 2006 collection “Averno,” calling it “masterly” and “a visionary interpretation of the myth of Persephone’s descent into hell in the captivity of Hades, the god of death.” Glück is the recipient of many awards, including Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Arts fellowships, the American Academy of Arts and Letters Gold Medal in Poetry and the National Humanities Medal. The award, which includes a 10 million kronor (more than $1.1 million) prize, comes after several years of controversy and scandal for the world’s preeminent literary accolade. In 2018, the award was postponed after sex abuse allegations rocked the Swedish Academy, the secretive body that chooses the winners of the literature prize, and sparked a mass exodus of members. After the academy revamped itself in a bid to regain the trust of the Nobel Founda Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Arts fellowships, the American Academy of Arts and Letters Gold Medal in Poetry and the National Humanities Medal.</p> <p>The award, which includes a 10 million kronor (more than $1.1 million) prize, comes after several years of controversy and scandal for the world’s preeminent literary accolade.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11025233> <p>In 2018, the award was postponed after sex abuse allegations rocked the Swedish Academy, the secretive body that chooses the winners of the literature prize, and sparked a mass exodus of members.</p> <p>After the academy revamped itself in a bid to regain the trust of the Nobel Foundation, two laureates were named last year, with the 2018 prize going to Poland’s Olga Tokarczuk and the 2019 award to Austria’s Peter Handke.</p> <p>But Handke’s prize caused a storm of protest: A strong supporter of the Serbs during the 1990s Balkan wars, he has been called an apologist for Serbian war crimes. Several countries including Albania, Bosnia and Turkey boycotted the Nobel awards ceremony in protest, and a member of the committee that nominates candidates for the literature prize resigned.</p> <p><br></p> message 58125160 Anti-Semitic ex-mayor becomes magnet for Vienna statue protests The statue of Karl Lueger, who apparently inspired Hitler, was defaced several times in recent months with graffiti reading 'Schande' or shame, and while the city wishes to remove the graffiti others stand guard, demanding it remains AFP https://www.ynetnews.com/article/Hk9rLH3Lv Thu, 08 Oct 2020 11:47:14 +03:00 A statue of an anti-Semitic former mayor of Vienna who inspired Hitler has become the focus of competing left- and right-wing protests, with anti-racist activists mounting a "shame vigil" around the monument. The likeness of Karl Lueger, on a prime spot on Vienna's imposing Ringstrasse boulevard, has been defaced several times in recent months with graffiti reading "Schande" ("Shame"). Galvanized by protests around historical monuments elsewhere in the world and the Black Lives Matter movement, an artists' collective took matters a step further and fixed two sets of concrete, gold-painted letters spelling "Schande" to the statue's plinth on Sunday night. The collective then set up a "shame vigil" at the site to prevent the city from removing the words. Jewish and Muslim youth organizations, feminists and left-wing groups are also taking turns manning the vigil. However, a group of men described by Austrian media as far-right activists removed the gold letters with a hammer and chisel on Monday. The police then cordoned off the statue. As a group of secondary school students passes by the statue in warm autumnal sunshine, their teacher explaining the controversy around the monument, Simon Nagy, one of the artists who started the vigil, tells AFP that Lueger "belongs on the manure heap of history" and that the statue should be in a museum. But the city authorities are planning to clean the graffiti by Friday, an announcement that has galvanised the 25-year-old and his group. Nagy says the artists want the graffiti to remain and are demanding that the city comes up with a plan to redesign the monument, but he is disappointed at the lack of action. Karl Lueger was mayor from 1897 until his death in 1910 and oversaw a period of transformation in which Vienna's population boomed to more than two million and much of its modern infrastructure was built. He built up a cult of personality that lived on after his death, with the statue unveiled in 1926. But his notorietyraffiti by Friday, an announcement that has galvanised the 25-year-old and his group.</p> <p>Nagy says the artists want the graffiti to remain and are demanding that the city comes up with a plan to redesign the monument, but he is disappointed at the lack of action.</p> <p>Karl Lueger was mayor from 1897 until his death in 1910 and oversaw a period of transformation in which Vienna's population boomed to more than two million and much of its modern infrastructure was built.&nbsp;</p> <p>He built up a cult of personality that lived on after his death, with the statue unveiled in 1926.</p> <p>But his notoriety stems from his ascent to power.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11019034> <p>In his rhetoric he railed against what he called Jewish influence over the press and sources of capital and called for the "liberation of the Christian people from Jewish dominance".</p> <p>This "particularly aggressive anti-Semitism" was central to his election as mayor, according to historian Florian Wenninger.&nbsp;</p> <p>"He built his political career on the hatred of a minority," according to Wenninger, even if he opportunistically tried to move away from this once in office.</p> <p>Hitler used Lueger as an early role model and cited him approvingly in "Mein Kampf".</p> <p>After much controversy, a portion of the Ringstrasse -- a circular boulevard in the city -- previously named after Lueger was renamed in 2012.</p> <p>Having served on a commission set up by the city authorities to look into potentially problematic street names, Wenninger is well aware of the sensitivities around historical monuments. &nbsp;</p> <p>"Something which in and of itself doesn't have any real-life relevance for people becomes a part of their identity when it's attacked," he explains.</p> <p>"Then there is a reflex where people say: 'Stop! This is crazy!'&nbsp;</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11019035> <p>"Wenninger says Austria's tradition of consensual politics, even at a local level, has meant debates over controversial issues have often been avoided.</p> <p>Long cast in the role of a victim of Nazi Germany, it is only in recent decades that Austria has begun to seriously examine its role in the Holocaust.&nbsp;</p> <p>The discussion of Lueger's place in history is part of this process of revision and comes ahead of city council elections on Sunday.</p> <p>But the signs are that most of today's politicians are seeking to steer clear of the controversy.&nbsp;</p> <p>The Social Democrats, who are on course to remain in power at Vienna's City Hall, said the monument had "already been appropriately contextualized", referring to a small explanatory tablet erected near the rear of the statue in 2016.</p> <p>As for the center-right People's Party, in power at a national level, they say they reject Lueger's anti-Semitism but at the same time recall that he was "one of Vienna's most influential mayors and an important modernizer of the city".&nbsp;</p> <p><br></p> <p><br></p> <p><br></p> <p><br></p> message 58124440 Members of NY Haredi community riot over new shutdowns Video of the protests shows a large group of Haredi men taking to the streets at 13th Avenue in Brooklyn's Borough Park, without social distancing or wearing masks, which they allegedly burned as an act of rebellion Associated Press, Ynet https://www.ynetnews.com/article/rkJOYNnLP Thu, 08 Oct 2020 10:26:3 +03:00 Anger and resentment flared Wednesday in New York City neighborhoods facing new coronavirus shutdowns, with some residents saying the state is unfairly targeting Orthodox Jewish communities as it tries to stamp out hot spots before they spread. Protests erupted in Brooklyn’s Borough Park neighborhood Tuesday night after Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced new restrictions on schools, businesses and houses of worship in some parts of the city and state. And frustration and grievances kept simmering the next day and into Wednesday night. Video of the protests posted on Twitter, shows a large group of Haredi men taking to the streets at 13th Avenue in the Borough Park, without wearing face masks or social distancing. There were reports that some even burned face masks as an act of rebellion. “I understand you need to wear a mask. I understand you social distance. What bothers me is: You pick on the good people,” said Brooklyn resident Meir Nimni. He argued that Orthodox Jewish gatherings were being singled out for a clampdown, noting that huge crowds convened this spring for racial injustice protests where destruction and violence sometimes broke out. “Everybody here wants to live, and everybody cares” about stopping the virus, Nimni said. But he saw a double standard that’s “just not fair.” Nearby, Renee Jeremias said authorities “have absolutely no right to shut us down.” Rabbi David Zwiebel, executive vice president of an Orthodox Jewish umbrella organization called Agudath Israel of America, said the group was contemplating a court fight if the state wasn’t open to changing a new 10-person limit for houses of worship in areas where new coronavirus cases are most concentrated. The restriction comes amid Jewish holiday of Sukkot. Many large events this season have already been canceled or rearranged, Zwiebel said, but the 10-person cap “would basically wipe out the entirety of the spirit of the holiday.” “We are now, you know, on the precipice of an enormous sense of Rabbi David Zwiebel, executive vice president of an Orthodox Jewish umbrella organization called Agudath Israel of America, said the group was contemplating a court fight if the state wasn’t open to changing a new 10-person limit for houses of worship in areas where new coronavirus cases are most concentrated.</p> <p>The restriction comes amid Jewish holiday of Sukkot. Many large events this season have already been canceled or rearranged, Zwiebel said, but the 10-person cap “would basically wipe out the entirety of the spirit of the holiday.”</p> <p>“We are now, you know, on the precipice of an enormous sense of despair,” Zwiebel said.</p> <p>Cuomo insists the new restrictions are based solely on science and coronavirus case clusters in areas that, in his view, have flouted the state’s existing virus-safety rules.</p> <p>After becoming the nation’s deadliest coronavirus hot spot this spring, New York wrestled its outbreak down to a steady and relatively low level over the summer.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11074707> <p>But infections have been rising in recent weeks, and hospitalizations are starting to follow. There has been an average of 659 COVID-19 patients in hospitals statewide over the past week, up from 426 for the week ending Sept 6, Cuomo said. During an early April peak, nearly 19,000 coronavirus patients were hospitalized statewide.</p> <p>He said a few areas are disproportionately driving the worrisome trends, with over 5% of coronavirus tests coming back positive in 20 hot spot ZIP codes, compared with about 1.3% statewide.</p> <p>In one Brooklyn ZIP code, 18% of everyone who has gotten a coronavirus test since Oct. 1 has tested positive, compared with a rate of about 3.9 percent citywide, according to city data.</p> <p>The Democratic governor said wider “spread is inevitable” if the clusters don’t get under control.</p> <p>“There’s always opposition. And we move forward anyways. And we’ll continue to do that,” he said on a conference call with reporters.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11074708> <p>The new rules, set to take effect Friday, involve parts of Brooklyn and Queens in New York City, sections of Orange and Rockland counties in the Hudson Valley and an area within Binghamton, near the Pennsylvania border. Many of the areas are home to large enclaves of Orthodox Jews.</p> <p>The plan sets up color-coded, concentric zones where the severity of the measures varies. In the hearts of the hot spots, schools can’t teach in person, and all nonessential businesses will be closed, among other measures. Surrounding areas face less stringent restrictions, such as limits on gatherings and restaurant diners.</p> <p>Orthodox Jewish residents aren’t the only ones complaining. The leader of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn, Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio, said churches “fervently object” to being told to reduce capacity after not having any outbreaks since reopening in July.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11074709> <p>Business interests are dismayed, too.</p> <p>“To shut down almost all of south Brooklyn and punish small businesses that have reopened safely will be an overwhelming setback to the borough’s economic recovery,” Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce President Randy Peers said in a statement.</p> <p>Criticism sharpened into street protests Tuesday night, when videos posted on social media showed hundreds of Orthodox Jewish men gathered in the streets of Borough Park, in some cases setting bonfires by burning masks.</p> <p>Video posted on social media showed a crowd swarming and knocking down a man holding a camera. Another video showed protesters rushing another man who had been filming the unrest, and pummeling him. A relative told The Associated Press he was taken to the hospital unconscious but was doing “much better” Wednesday and was expected to be released. The relative spoke on the condition of anonymity for fear of reprisals.</p> <p>Police said there were no arrests.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement11074710> <p>Crowds of Orthodox Jewish men returned to Brooklyn streets on Wednesday night, as police officers watched, according to social media video. Some giant flags proclaiming support for President Donald Trump could also be seen in the crowd.</p> <p>Mayor Bill de Blasio told opponents of the new rules to respect them and follow police instructions.</p> <p>“There’ll be consequences” if people don’t, the Democratic mayor added at a virtual news briefing Wednesday.</p> <p>The state already faced a lawsuit this year from religious observers who questioned why peaceful mass protests were able to occur while religious groups once faced stricter gathering limits than businesses.</p> <p>Under a federal court ruling that the state is fighting, unlimited outdoor religious gatherings with social distancing are currently allowed. That ruling also means both religious groups and businesses currently face a 50% indoor capacity limit, though New York City restaurants are limited to 25% capacity indoors.</p> <p><br></p> <p><br></p> message 58114940 YouTube removes Farrakhan's Nation of Islam channel Video-sharing giant says notoriously anti-Semitic group violated rules against hate speech, in particular for promoting claim that Jews are part of evil conspiracy; group's leader, who also has history of homophobia, banned from Facebook, entering UK i24NEWS https://www.ynetnews.com/article/BJTHFeq8P Wed, 07 Oct 2020 11:40:44 +03:00 Video-sharing giant YouTube has decided to remove the notoriously anti-Semitic Nation of Islam's channel from its platform due to hate speech. The channel was taken down on October 2 for violating the video-sharing platform's hate speech terms, and in particular, for advancing a claim that Jews are part of an evil conspiracy theory, the Los Angeles-based Jewish Journal reported. “We have strict policies prohibiting hate speech on YouTube, and terminate any channel that repeatedly or egregiously violates those policies,” a YouTube spokesperson told the Journal. “After updating our guidelines last year to better address content that spreads hateful conspiracy theories, we saw a five-fold spike in video removals and have terminated over 25,000 channels for violating our hate speech policies,” the spokesperson added. NOI did not respond to the Journal’s request for comment. Louis Farrakhan, leader of the Nation of Islam, has repeatedly made anti-Semitic statements. Last year, he made a speech denying his hatred of Jewish people but caused outrage by using the term “Satanic Jews.” Farrakhan has also been banned by Facebook. He is barred from Britain and mostly blocked from mainstream TV for his history of anti-Semitic and homophobic comments. Since August 2019, YouTube has removed several white nationalist figures from its platform, including David Duke and Richard Spencer in June of this year. message 58114920 NY Haredi group hits back at new coronavirus rules for hot spots Claiming shutdowns target religious practice by limiting worship in synagogues, Agudath Israel of America calls the plan 'appalling to all people of religion and good faith' and vows to explore all options to reverse the decision Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/HJjKlloLv Wed, 07 Oct 2020 11:38:25 +03:00 An Orthodox Jewish organization has slammed New York State's intention to reinstate restrictions on businesses, houses of worship and schools in and near areas where coronavirus cases are spiking, calling it "appalling to all people of religion and good faith." Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the decision on Tuesday, saying the severity of shutdowns would vary by proximity to the hot spots. Set to take effect no later than Friday, the new rules will affect parts of Brooklyn and Queens in New York City, sections of Orange and Rockland counties in the Hudson Valley, and an area within Binghamton in the Southern Tier. The planned restrictions include school and business shutdowns in some areas; others will see limitations on gatherings and restaurant diners. Agudath Israel of America, an Orthodox Jewish umbrella organization, threatened to explore all options to undo the restrictions because of what it saw as targeting religious practices by limiting the number of worshipers allowed in synagogues at any given time. The plan marks a sizeable step back after a cautious reopening this spring and summer in New York, an early U.S. hot spot of the pandemic and the deadliest. While the daily toll dropped dramatically after a surge in March and early April, more than 33,000 New Yorkers in all have died of COVID-19, more than in any other state, according to figures collected by Johns Hopkins University. "This is about protecting people and saving lives," Cuomo, a Democrat, said at a news conference in Albany. In the hearts of the hot spots -- color-coded as red zones -- schools will close to in-person learning, only essential businesses could remain open, houses of worship could convene no more than 10 people at once, and restaurants could offer only takeout. Those areas are surrounded by "orange" or "yellow" zones, according to maps the state released later Friday. In orange zones, schools also will be remote-only, and nonessential enterprises considered high risk -- any other state, according to figures collected by Johns Hopkins University.</p> <p>"This is about protecting people and saving lives," Cuomo, a Democrat, said at a news conference in Albany.</p> <p>In the hearts of the hot spots -- color-coded as red zones -- schools will close to in-person learning, only essential businesses could remain open, houses of worship could convene no more than 10 people at once, and restaurants could offer only takeout.</p> <p>Those areas are surrounded by "orange" or "yellow" zones, according to maps the state released later Friday.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10996297> <p>In orange zones, schools also will be remote-only, and nonessential enterprises considered high risk -- such as gyms and personal-care businesses -- will be closed. Religious institutions are to be restricted to 25 people, and restaurants can offer limited outdoor dining, with a maximum of four guests per table.</p> <p>In yellow zones, businesses and schools can stay open, with mandatory weekly testing of a yet-to-be-determined percentage of students and teachers. Religious institutions can operate at half capacity, and restaurants may seat parties up to four indoors and out.</p> <p>Rockland County Executive Ed Day, a Republican, said he backed the governor's plan and would do what he could to help implement it, calling the restrictions "measured and clearly focused."</p> <p>He urged residents to embrace their "civic duty to do what is right, not only for ourselves but for our entire community."</p> <p>In Broome County, where part of Binghamton's west side will be subject to "yellow" zone rules, County Executive Jason Garnar said the restrictions could benefit an area that went from about 60 active cases 10 days ago to 458 on Tuesday.</p> <p>"A lot of what we've seen is spread through the restaurants and the bars," said Garnar, a Democrat. He added: "just as quick as we got into this, we can get out of this."</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10996298> <p>New York City's implementation is likely to begin Thursday, according to a tweet from Bill Neidhardt, a spokesman for Mayor Bill de Blasio.</p> <p>A message seeking comment was left with officials in Orange County.</p> <p>After a harrowing spring, New York boasted a steady and relatively low transmission rate over the summer. But clusters have sprouted recently, with rising infections.</p> <p>In New York City, about 11,600 people have tested positive since Sept. 1, compared with less than 7,400 in August. In early April, 5,000 to 6,000 people or more tested positive each day.</p> <p>The city has been averaging around four deaths from COVID-19 per day since Sept. 1, compared with nearly 550 daily in April.</p> <p>The new restrictions came a day after Cuomo ordered the closing of schools in nine Brooklyn and Queens ZIP codes that have accounted for more than 25% of all new infections in the city over the past two weeks while representing just 7% of the population.</p> <p>De Blasio had also proposed closing nonessential businesses in those areas, but Cuomo suggested that the boundaries needed to be drawn more broadly.</p> <p>"We are at a crucial moment in our fight against the coronavirus," the Democratic mayor said at a virtual news briefing before Cuomo's announcement. "We have to bring everything we can to bear. We have to be tough about it."</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10996299> <p>The affected areas in the city are largely Orthodox Jewish strongholds, and some community members have complained of being singled out for enforcement.</p> <p>In response to Cuomo saying earlier that he had productive conversations with community leaders, David Zwiebel, executive vice president of Agudath, said in the statement it "was largely a one-way monologue, and contained no mention of this new plan."</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10996300> <p>North of the city, Orange County Health Commissioner Dr. Irina Gelman ordered school closures for at least two weeks in Kiryas Joel, an O message 58110550 In face of COVID-19 spike, New York Orthodox Jews take holiday prayers outside Governor Cuomo set to meet with local Haredi leaders, after announcing state would enforce mask mandates, social-distancing laws and close schools in those areas following a surge in cases Reuters https://www.ynetnews.com/article/S1ovOQqUP Tue, 06 Oct 2020 22:54:49 +03:00 Standing at least six feet apart and wearing skullcaps, prayer shawls and face masks, about two dozen Orthodox Jewish men pored over texts this week on a lawn in New York's Monsey suburb, filling a quiet morning with the soft hum of Hebrew prayer. Rather than crowd into a synagogue, the group has congregated outside a neighbor's house each day to observe the week-long festival of Sukkot, one of many Jewish holidays this time of year coinciding with a sharp rise in coronavirus cases among members of this insular religious community. Rockland County, encompassing Monsey and lying about 40 miles (64 km) north of New York City, is one of the state's most troubled hotspots. Since March, nearly 700 of its people have died from COVID-19, more than in 15 individual U.S. states, according to a Reuters tally. A recent spike in infections after a summer lull has been a somber reminder that the virus is still spreading, especially in places where large groups gather for religious or other reasons without adhering to public health guidance. "The community had such terrible losses in the early days, and the last thing we need is to have such things happen again," said Rabbi Asher Bush of Congregation Ahavat Yisrael in the Rockland village of Wesley Hills. "That would be utter, utter catastrophe." The open-air service is one of many adjustments that Orthodox Jews throughout the world have had to make in their traditions. The High Holiday season that includes the Jewish New Year and Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, is typically marked by mass prayer services, big family meals and travel. The celebrations traditionally feature group dancing. All of that now is forbidden because of the virus. Two Rockland zip codes had positive coronavirus test rates top 15% over the weekend, compared to the state average of just over 1%, according to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. The viral spread has been especially acute in the Orthodox Jewish enclaves of Rockland County, as well as in New their traditions. The High Holiday season that includes the Jewish New Year and Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, is typically marked by mass prayer services, big family meals and travel. The celebrations traditionally feature group dancing. All of that now is forbidden because of the virus.</p> <p>Two Rockland zip codes had positive coronavirus test rates top 15% over the weekend, compared to the state average of just over 1%, according to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.</p> <p>The viral spread has been especially acute in the Orthodox Jewish enclaves of Rockland County, as well as in New York's Orange County and Brooklyn, areas where the governor says social distancing and mask-wearing have not been adequately enforced.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10968979> <p>A drop in infection rates prompted some people - including, but not limited to, Orthodox Jews - to become more lax about mask-wearing and social distancing, several members of the Orthodox Jewish community told Reuters.</p> <p>"It's critically important for everybody to buy into this," said Aaron Glatt, an associate rabbi at an Orthodox congregation in Woodmere, New York, and chief of infectious diseases at Mount Sinai South Nassau.</p> <p>Tuvia Rotberg, a bookstore owner, hosted the outdoor Sukkot services in a white, open-air tent. He launched outdoor services for daily and Sabbath prayers just as the pandemic gripped New York in March and has kept them up, even though synagogues now are open with limited capacity.</p> <h3 class = "pHeader">'People are trying'</h3> <p>On Tuesday, Cuomo planned to meet with Orthodox Jewish leaders in Rockland and Orange counties and Brooklyn, after announcing the state would enforce mask mandates and social-distancing laws in those areas.</p> <p>This week he ordered that schools be closed in 11 New York City neighborhoods where a high concentration of Orthodox Jews live. He also said he might enforce a new round of business and school shutdowns in Rockland County.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10968980> <p>"I have to say to the Orthodox community tomorrow, if you're not willing to live with these rules, then I'm going to close the synagogues," Cuomo told reporters on Monday.</p> <p>Health officials in Orange County on Tuesday shut down schools in the Village of Kiryas Joel and the Town of Palm Tree, which have large Orthodox Jewish populations, because of a burgeoning outbreak, News 12 Hudson Valley reported.</p> <p>Rabbi Bush of Wesley Hills said his synagogue has been diligent about enforcing social distancing and masks, although he recently attended a service at another synagogue where other worshipers gathered in a tent outdoors without masks.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10968981> <p>"There is a very large gamut of how different congregations are conducting themselves," he said.</p> <p>But if there was nonchalance at the end of the summer, recent hospitalizations of friends and family have forced many Orthodox Jews to acknowledge the severity of the situation, community members told Reuters.</p> <p>"People are trying," said Shoshana Bernstein, a communications professional in Monsey whose family has been attending outdoor services during Sukkot. "And if they weren't doing the right thing last week, then more people are doing the right thing this week."</p> <p><br></p> message 58106860 Florida may reinstate principal laid off in Holocaust denial row School board debates whether to rehire William Latson, fired for 'ethical misconduct' over 2018 email exchange with parent in which he said, 'not everyone believes the Holocaust happened' Ynet, Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/S1rKdot8v Tue, 06 Oct 2020 14:5:6 +03:00 A high school principal in Florida who was fired last year after telling a student's mother that "not everyone believes the Holocaust happened" might be rehired this week. Local school superintendent Donald Fennoy has recommended that the Palm Beach County school board rehire former Spanish River High School principal William Latson and give him $152,000 in back pay, news outlets reported. The board was set to meet Wednesday. The recommendation follows a Florida administrative judge's August ruling that Latson should not have been sacked. The school board voted 5-2 last October to fire Latson on grounds of "ethical misconduct" and "failure to carry out job responsibilities." The official justification for his termination was failure to return messages from school district officials in the days after his comments made international news. Judge Robert Cohen ruled in August that Latson should have been reprimanded or reassigned to another position within the school system rather than fired, JTA reported at the time. According to Cohen, Latson “made some unfortunate choices in expressing his thoughts,” but did none of his actions rose to the level of “gross insubordination” that would have led to his dismissal. Latson had initially been reassigned from the Boca Raton school to a district office job because of the outcry over his email to a mother who inquired whether the school's students study the Holocaust, in which 6 millions Jews were massacred by the Nazi regime and its allies across Europe. Latson, who had been at Spanish River for eight years, replied to the mother that as an educator his job was to be "politically neutral." "I can't say the Holocaust is a factual, historical event because I am not in a position to do so as a school district employee," he wrote. The mother, assuming that Latson had expressed himself poorly, wrote back, saying, "The Holocaust is a factual, historical event. It is not a right or belief." Latson replied, "Not everyonher who inquired whether the school's students study the Holocaust, in which 6 millions Jews were massacred by the Nazi regime and its allies across Europe.&nbsp;</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10955766> <p>Latson, who had been at Spanish River for eight years, replied to the mother that as an educator his job was to be "politically neutral."</p> <p>"I can't say the Holocaust is a factual, historical event because I am not in a position to do so as a school district employee," he wrote.</p> <p>The mother, assuming that Latson had expressed himself poorly, wrote back, saying, "The Holocaust is a factual, historical event. It is not a right or belief."</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10955767> <p>Latson replied, "Not everyone believes the Holocaust happened."&nbsp;</p> <p>He added: "You have your thoughts, but we are a public school and not all of our parents have the same beliefs."</p> <p>According to the Palm Beach Post, the school has one of the largest Jewish student populations in the county.</p> message 58106060 Some ultra-Orthodox Jews bristle at NYC response to virus surge 'The Jewish community feels they're being singled out and there's some element of anti-Semitism,' says publisher of Jewish publication; some call for more city hall interaction with Haredi communities as they experience new virus surge Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/BJU5MsKID Tue, 06 Oct 2020 12:24:10 +03:00 Amid a new surge of COVID-19 in New York's ultra-Orthodox Jewish communities, many members are reviving health measures that some had abandoned over the summer -- social distancing, wearing masks. For many, there's also a return of anger: They feel the city is singling them out for criticism. The latest blow: an order Monday from Gov. Andrew Cuomo temporarily closing public and private schools in several areas with large Orthodox populations. It will take effect Tuesday. "People are very turned off and very burned out," said Yosef Hershkop, a Hasidic Jew from Brooklyn who works for a chain of urgent-care centers. "It's not like we're the only people in New York getting COVID." Over the past few weeks, top government officials, including Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio, have sounded the alarm about localized upticks in COVID-19 after several months in which the state had one of the nation's lowest infection rates. Officials say the worst-hit ZIP codes overlap with large ultra-Orthodox Jewish communities in the boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens and in a couple of nearby counties. The goal is to head off a feared second wave of infections months after the city beat back an outbreak that killed more than 24,000 New Yorkers. Under the shutdown plan submitted to Cuomo by the mayor, 100 public schools and 200 private ones would be closed in nine areas that are home to close to 500,000 people. Those areas represent 7% of the city's population but have been responsible for about 1,850 new cases in the past four weeks -- more than 20% of all new infections in the city during that span. De Blasio had proposed the shutdown on Sunday, the second day of the Jewish holiday Sukkot, when ultra-Orthodox Jews would not be using telephones or computers and thus wouldn't have heard the news until sundown. "Announcing this in the middle of a Jewish holiday shows City Hall's incompetence and lack of sensitivity towards the Jewish Community," tweeted Daniel Rosenthal, a State Assembly ment 7% of the city's population but have been responsible for about 1,850 new cases in the past four weeks -- more than 20% of all new infections in the city during that span.</p> <p>De Blasio had proposed the shutdown on Sunday, the second day of the Jewish holiday Sukkot, when ultra-Orthodox Jews would not be using telephones or computers and thus wouldn't have heard the news until sundown.</p> <p>"Announcing this in the middle of a Jewish holiday shows City Hall's incompetence and lack of sensitivity towards the Jewish Community," tweeted Daniel Rosenthal, a State Assembly member from Queens.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10984570> <p>De Blasio said he was aware of the holiday but felt obligated to announce the plan as soon as it was developed.</p> <p>The emphasis on the ultra-Orthodox communities rankled many of their members, even as civic and religious leaders acknowledged the dangers posed by the new outbreak and urged compliance with guidelines. Many say they are already straining to balance rituals and traditions centered on communal gatherings with health rules.</p> <p>Last week, Agudath Israel of America, an Orthodox Jewish umbrella organization, worked with the Borough Park Jewish Community Council to distribute 400,000 masks. Fern Sidman, a journalist with the newspaper The Jewish Voice, said many families are canceling bar mitzvahs or planning to sharply reduce attendance.</p> <p>The Jewish Voice is urging compliance with health guidelines such as mask wearing and social distancing. However, its publisher, David Ben Hooren, said many ultra-Orthodox Jews in Brooklyn and Queens believe they have been unfairly targeted with stringent restrictions that aren't being enforced elsewhere.</p> <p>"The Jewish community feels they're being singled out and there's some element of anti-Semitism," he said Monday. "Not that I agree with it, but that's the sentiment in the street. Tensions are running high."</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10984571> <p>Rabbi Avi Shafran, director of public affairs for Agudath Israel of America, said a majority of the ultra-Orthodox Jewish community "is determined to do what is necessary" to combat the coronavirus, and adherence to health guidelines has become "much more common."</p> <p>He said his organization is discouraging family outings and gatherings this week as Sukkot continues.&nbsp;</p> <p>"People must comply with any governmental directives that are aimed at curbing spread of the virus," he said.</p> <p>Cuomo, at a news conference Monday, displayed images of large gatherings of Haredi Jews and warned that he might close some religious institutions if their leaders did not abide by restrictions. He and de Blasio also are considering ordering the closing of some nonessential businesses in the hot-spot areas.</p> <DIV id=tvElement3182030></DIV> <p>The latest developments have rekindled friction that surfaced in March and April, when some Orthodox neighborhoods in and around New York City were hit hard by the coronavirus. Hundreds of people died or were hospitalized, and lockdowns closed many Jewish schools and businesses.</p> <p>In April, de Blasio oversaw the dispersal of a big Hasidic funeral in Brooklyn and took heat over a tweet warning "the Jewish community, and all communities" against large gatherings. Some community members accused him of a double standard because of his support for gatherings linked to the Black Lives Matter movement.</p> <p>Why the upsurge? Some residents cited the return of Orthodox families from summer getaways at the shore or in the Catskill Mountains, and the recent reopening of some Jewish schools. Shafran said some community members, after the springtime outbreak subsided, lowered their guard with less wearing of masks and social distancing, and resumed exchanging of hugs with extended family.</p> <p>Motti Seligson, media relations director for the Hasidic movement Chabad-Lubavitch, said friction between New York's Hasidic communities and the city Health Department had been simmering for years.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10984572> <p>One long-running dispute involved the city's efforts to restrict a specific circumcision procedure used by some Orthodox communities, claiming that it posed a health risk.</p> <p>In 2018 and 2019, measles cases spread in ultra-Orthodox communities in New York as well as other regions. As ripples of anti-Semitism surfaced, some Orthodox leaders felt the Health Department should have focused more on working with the affected communities and less on scolding them.</p> <p>"There's a lot of trust that has been eroded over a decade," Seligson said. "You need much greater integration with these communities -- flood them with outreach, speak to every synagogue, every doctor."</p> <p>Asked about such criticisms, the Health Department issued a statement from Health Commissioner Dave Chokshi saying: "Wherever we have gone, we have worked hand-in-hand with the community and we will always work to build trusted partnerships so that everyone knows how to protect themselves."</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10984573> <p>Sarah Horowitz, a Hasidic resident of Brooklyn's Midwood neighborhood, was angered by the possibility of new restrictions and what she felt was the heightened scrutiny of her community.</p> <p>Already, she said, she has been struggling to find the right balance of work and parenthood now that her 9-year-old daughter's private school has been shut down because of the virus.</p> <p>"Everyone is frustrated," she said after de Blasio's announcement. "We all feel targeted by the mayor. We just want our lives to get back to normal. ... It's like we are living under a black cloud."</p> <p>To an extent, the friction in New York mirrors developments in Israel, where the ultra-Orthodox have been criticized for ignoring safety rules and crowding into synagogues even as the country battles a new COVID-19 outbreak.&nbsp;</p> <p>Israel's coronavirus czar says the ultra-Orthodox, who compri message 58100260 Jewish scientist among trio of Nobel Medicine winners Harvey Alter joins Charles Rice and Michael Houghton in being awarded prestigious prize for their work in identifying Hepatitis C, which causes cirrhosis and liver cancer; their research could lead to total eradication of the virus Reuters https://www.ynetnews.com/article/SynDQnuIP Mon, 05 Oct 2020 19:33:12 +03:00 An American Jewish scientist joined a countryman and a Briton on Monday in winning the 2020 Nobel Prize for Medicine for their work in identifying the Hepatitis C virus, which causes cirrhosis and liver cancer. The discoveries - which were made by Americans Harvey Alter and Charles Rice and Briton Prof. Michael Houghton - meant there was now a chance of eradicating the Hepatitis C virus completely, the award-giving body said. "Prior to their work, the discovery of the Hepatitis A and B viruses had been critical steps forward," the Nobel Assembly at Sweden's Karolinska Institute said in a statement on awarding the prize of 10 million Swedish crowns ($1.1 million). "The discovery of Hepatitis C virus revealed the cause of the remaining cases of chronic hepatitis and made possible blood tests and new medicines that have saved millions of lives." While the Nobel awards will go ahead as planned this year, they have been overshadowed by the coronavirus pandemic. The Nobel Foundation has cancelled the traditional banquet, which forms the centerpiece of the celebrations in December, and will hand out the medals and diplomas in a televised event rather than live in Stockholm. This year's winners will be invited to celebrate alongside the 2021 laureates, assuming the pandemic has eased by then. Medicine is the first of the Nobel Prizes awarded each year. The prizes for achievements in science, peace and literature have been awarded since 1901 and were created in the will of dynamite inventor and businessman Alfred Nobel. message 58099060 Attack on Hamburg student was anti-Semitic, German Jewish group says 'The situation that Jews increasingly become a target of hatred, must not leave anybody cold in... Germany,' says Josef Schuster, head of Central Council of Jews after 26-year-old man assaulted on Hamburg synagogue grounds Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/S1yGnqdLv Mon, 05 Oct 2020 16:56:50 +03:00 Germany's leading Jewish group said Monday an attack on a Jewish student outside a synagogue "can only be classified as anti-Semitic." "The situation that Jews increasingly become a target of hatred, must not leave anybody cold in a state of law like Germany," said Josef Schuster, the head of the Central Council of Jews in Germany. The 26-year-old man, who was wearing a skullcap, was about to enter the synagogue grounds in the northern city of Hamburg on Sunday when he was hit in the head with what appeared to be a folding spade, police said. He was taken to the hospital with head injuries. The suspected perpetrator, a 29-year-old German man of Kazakh origin wearing military style clothes, was arrested after the attack. The attack came nearly a year after a heavily armed white supremacist targeted a synagogue in the eastern German city of Halle on Yom Kippur, the holiest day in Judaism. He killed a passer-by and a man at a nearby kebab stall after failing to force his way into the building. Security at Jewish institutions across Germany has been increased since the attack in Halle on Oct. 9, but Schuster from the Central Council of Jews said there had to be an investigation into how the security at the Hamburg synagogue could be further improved. Jews were gathering Sunday to celebrate the holiday of Sukkot at the Hamburg synagogue, yet officers guarding the building were not able to detain the attacker before he approached his victim right in front of the synagogue. Authorities said Sunday night that the Hamburg attacker seemed confused during a first interrogation by police. They have not yet released any details on his identity or his motive, but criminal police have taken over - which is usually the case when a political or extremist motive is suspected. The German news agency dpa also reported that a piece of paper with a Swastika on it was found in the pocket of the attacker. A Hamburg rabbi said the city's community, was "very, very shocked" by the assauo detain the attacker before he approached his victim right in front of the synagogue.</p> <p>Authorities said Sunday night that the Hamburg attacker seemed confused during a first interrogation by police. They have not yet released any details on his identity or his motive, but criminal police have taken over - which is usually the case when a political or extremist motive is suspected.</p> <p>The German news agency dpa also reported that a piece of paper with a Swastika on it was found in the pocket of the attacker.</p> <p>A Hamburg rabbi said the city's community, was "very, very shocked" by the assault.</p> <p>"The question is: What have we not learned since Halle?" Rabbi Shlomo Bistritzky said.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10984597> <p>The assault comes amid heightened concern in Germany over rising anti-Semitism and far-right extremism. In 2019, the authorities registered an average of five anti-Semitic crimes per day in Germany.&nbsp;</p> <p>Those included physical attacks, property damage, threats, anti-Semitic propaganda and other acts of malicious behavior such as giving the stiff-armed Nazi salute.</p> <p>"This is not an isolated case - this is repugnant anti-Semitism and we must all stand up against it," German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas tweeted Sunday night.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10984598> <p>The country's justice minister called the attack "a horrible act of violence."</p> <p>"The hatred against Jews is a disgrace for our country Christine Lambrecht said in a statement.&nbsp;</p> <p>"We have to further confront agitation against Jews and be there more for the victims of hatred and violence."&nbsp;</p> message 58096670 German officials express shock over attack on Jewish student Justice minister calls for further action to stop incitement against Germany's Jews; FM Heiko Maas calls Hamburg attack 'repugnant anti-Semitism' but dismisses it as an 'isolated incident' Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/rk2558OUv Mon, 05 Oct 2020 12:57:51 +03:00 Germany’s justice minister on Monday called an attack on a Jewish student outside a synagogue “a horrible act of violence.” “The hatred against Jews is a disgrace for our country,” Christine Lambrecht said in a statement. “We have to further confront agitation against Jews and be there more for the victims of hatred and violence.” The 26-year-old man was about to enter the synagogue grounds in the northern city of Hamburg on Sunday when he was hit in the head with what appeared to be a folding spade, police said. He was taken to the hospital with head injuries. The suspected perpetrator, a 29-year-old German man of Kazakh origin wearing military-style clothes, was arrested after the attack. The attack came nearly a year after a heavily armed white supremacist targeted a synagogue in the eastern German city of Halle on Yom Kippur, the holiest day in Judaism. He killed a passer-by and a man at a nearby kebab stall after failing to force his way into the building. Authorities said Sunday night that the Hamburg attacker seemed confused during a first interrogation by police. A Hamburg rabbi said the community, which had come together Sunday to celebrate the Jewish holiday of Sukkot, was “very, very shocked” by the assault. “The question is: What have we not learned since Halle?” Rabbi Shlomo Bistritzky said. The assault comes amid heightened concern in Germany over rising anti-Semitism and far-right extremism. “This is not an isolated case — this is repugnant anti-Semitism and we must all stand up against it,” German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas tweeted Sunday night. message 58091840 Jewish man assaulted, wounded outside Hamburg synagogue Victim hit in the head with what appeared to be a folding spade by man wearing military-style clothing; suspected assailant had a piece of paper with a swastika in his pocket Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/SJdHEnD8D Sun, 04 Oct 2020 23:56:6 +03:00 A Jewish man was assaulted and wounded outside a synagogue in Hamburg on Sunday, police said, in what appears to be an anti-Semitic attack. The suspected perpetrator was arrested, and Germany's foreign minister denounced the assault as "repugnant anti-Semitism." The 26-year-old victim, who was apparently about to enter the synagogue grounds, was hit in the head with what appeared to be a folding spade, police said. The suspect, a 29-year-old German man, was wearing military-style clothing. The victim was given first aid at the scene by passers-by, then taken to a hospital with injuries that were described as "significant" but not life-threatening. Officers who were on hand to protect the synagogue arrested the suspect, a police statement said. It added that the background to the assault is under investigation. The Sueddeutsche Zeitung newspaper, which first reported on the assault, said that the victim is a Jewish student who was wearing a skullcap. Police later said that the suspect, a German with Kazakh roots, left an "extremely confused impression" and questioning him was difficult. News agency dpa reported, without citing sources, that the suspected assailant had a piece of paper with a swastika in his pocket. The assault, which occurred during the Jewish holiday of Sukkot, comes amid heightened concern in Germany over anti-Semitism and far-right extremism. Nearly a year ago, a heavily armed white supremacist targeted a synagogue in the eastern German city of Halle on Yom Kippur, the holiest day in Judaism. He killed a passer-by and a man at a nearby kebab stall after failing to force his way into the building. Security has since been increased at Jewish institutions across the country. "This is not an isolated case - this is repugnant anti-Semitism and we must all stand up against it," German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas tweeted. message 58091640 Following peace deal, UAE erects first-ever public sukkah in the heart of Dubai local authorities place traditional hut in front of the world-famous Burj Khalifa tower; UAE Jewry invite Jews from near and far, non-Jewish locals to visit during the holiday Itamar Eichner https://www.ynetnews.com/article/rye8B9PIP Sun, 04 Oct 2020 23:28:5 +03:00 Weeks after the formal signing of the normalization agreement between Israel, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Bahrain in Washington, a public sukkah was erected in the Gulf state’s city of Dubai on Sunday, in a first-of-its-kind sign of solidarity. The traditional hut, which was built in coordination with Dubai’s local authorities and security forces, was erected in front of the world’s tallest tower - Dubai’s prominent Burj Khalifa tower - and unveiled by the rabbi of Dubai’s Jewish community, Rabbi Levi Duchman. "The Jewish community here lives in safety and peace thanks to the authorities,” Duchman said. “In the sukkah, as well as in the synagogue, we will pray for authorities' success and for the health of Mohammed bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the crown prince of Abu Dhabi.” Rabbi Duchman is the only rabbi staying in the Gulf state on a regular basis and works in Dubai openly and in coordination with authorities. The Jewish community states that the sukkah is open to everyone and that "every Jew who lives here regularly or has come here for one purpose or another is invited to our sukkah. It is, of course, also open to the people of the Emirates who accept us with open arms." In celebration of Sukkot, and as a further sign of solidarity, 150 kits comprised of the holiday's ritual plants - etrog (the fruit of a citron tree), lulav (a ripe, green, closed frond from a date palm tree), hadass (a ripe, green, closed frond from a date palm tree) and aravah (branches with leaves from the willow tree) - also known as "the four species" - arrived in Dubai from the United States and were distributed among the local Jewish community. This year, a synagogue also operated in Abu Dhabi on the Jewish New Year - Rosh Hashanah - for the first time ever. Furthermore, a local factory seeking to cooperate with the local Jewish community slaughtered 2,500 birds in accordance with Jewish law. message 58090280 Berlin 'John Doe' desecrates mezuzah at synagogue Officials call to bolster treatment for anti-Semitic virus, as is case with coronavirus after community rabbi discovers swastika drawn on both sides of parchment housed in doorpost Itamar Eichner https://www.ynetnews.com/article/SJvrMYvLv Sun, 04 Oct 2020 22:58:17 +03:00 An unknown perpetrator desecrated a mezuzah at a synagogue in Berlin, Germany, drawing a swastika on its insides The rabbi of the Tiferet Yisrael Synagogue in Berlin, Germany, was appalled to discover that one of the synagogue’s mezuzahs was vandalized by a John Doe who drew a swastika on the parchment inside of it. The alarming discovery was made during the Ten Days of Repentance, which begin with the Jewish new year - Rosh Hashanah - and culminate with the ending of Yom Kippur. According to Zygmunt Königsberg, a representative of the Jewish community in Berlin, the mezuzah hanging on the outside entrance to the synagogue was desecrated on purpose, by someone who opened the mezuzah and drew a swastika on both sides of the parchment housed within. This incident is the latest in a slew of recent acts against Jews in both Europe and the United States. In addition, the coronavirus pandemic has spawned a new and unique wave of anti-Semitism across the internet, and on social media in particular, according to which the Jews, the Zionists and the State of Israel are to blame for the pandemic and the spread of the virus. The Vice-Chairman of the World Zionist Organization Yaakov Hagoel said in a statement: "Incitement and cases of anti-Semitism against Jews happen even on the holiest day of the year, Yom Kippur. Anti-Semitic criminals know exactly when to aim for their goal.” We must severely punish these perpetrators, so as to not allow them the freedom to carry out their plot against Jews anywhere in the world. I call to bolster level of treatment for the anti-Semitic virus, as is the case with coronavirus.” message 58052950 Heiress of Jewish philanthropist family jailed in 'sex cult' case NY court sentences Clare Bronfman for being a benefactor of NXIVM company's leader Keith Raniere, who allegedly brainwashed unpaid migrants into sexual relations with him, establishing a 'slave and master' system i24NEWS https://www.ynetnews.com/article/rJ11SLfQ8D Thu, 01 Oct 2020 12:0:34 +03:00 The daughter of Jewish billionaire philanthropist and former Seagram liquor owner Edgar Bronfman Sr. was sentenced to six years and nine months in prison on Wednesday over her involvement in the NXIVUM sex trafficking group. The sentencing in the New York court was the first in the NXIVUM sex cult scandal, which saw the company's leader Keith Raniere brainwash unpaid migrants into sexual relations. Clare Bronfman reportedly spent over $150 million dollars to fund the self-proclaimed multi-level marketing firm and was accused of being Raniere's benifactor. She plead guilty to credit card fraud, fraudulent use of identification and harboring immigrants for “labor and services.” The 41-year-old Seagram's scion maintained she was only aware of the women’s empowerment aspect of the group. "I never meant to hurt anyone, however I have, and for this I am deeply sorry," she said. Other people convicted include actress Allison Mack, who was introduced into the group by fellow "Smallville" actress Kristin Kreuk. Mack also pleaded guilty in 2019 to racketeering, while Kreuk left the organization several years ago. Kreuk has said she knew nothing about the company's illicit practices. Nxivm was established by Raniere and Nancy Salzman, both of whom were found guilty in 2019. Salzman, a hypnotist, developed the so-called “self-help” method called "Executive Success Program" in 1997 before teaming up with Raniere the following year. Raniere described Nxivm as “a methodology that allows people to optimize their experience and behavior.” Their website also describes it as a “community guided by humanitarian principles that seek to empower people and answer important questions about what it means to be human.” Meanwhile, members of the group were recruited into a secret society called The Vow or DOS, which stands for Dominus Obsequious Sororium - allegedly meaning “master over slave.” Women who had entered the group allegedly were branded and forced into sexual slavery. Bronf1997 before teaming up with Raniere the following year.</p> <p>Raniere described Nxivm as “a methodology that allows people to optimize their experience and behavior.” Their website also describes it as a “community guided by humanitarian principles that seek to empower people and answer important questions about what it means to be human.”</p> <p>Meanwhile, members of the group were recruited into a secret society called The Vow or DOS, which stands for Dominus Obsequious Sororium - allegedly meaning “master over slave.” Women who had entered the group allegedly were branded and forced into sexual slavery.</p> <p>Bronfman’s late father, Edgar Bronfman Sr., was in the past quoted in Forbes magazine saying, “I think it’s a cult.” Bronfman Sr. was a longtime World Jewish Congress chairman before his death in 2013.</p> <p>The Bronfman family has a long history of being one of the most prominent North American Jewish philanthropists, with numerous buildings in Israel named after family members.&nbsp;</p> <p><em><strong>The article was reprinted with permission from </strong></em><a href="https://www.i24news.tv/en/news/international/1601522997-heiress-of-prominent-jewish-philanthropist-family-jailed-for-funding-sex-cult" class="bluelink" style=""><em><strong>i24NEWS</strong></em></a></p> message 58051900 As virus rebounds in New York, Haredi Jews decry stigmatization Authorities say the most significant jumps involve ultra-Orthodox neighborhoods of Brooklyn and while many leaders in the community promote awareness of COVID-19 risks, others dismiss it as 'fake news' AFP https://www.ynetnews.com/article/HytMukQIv Thu, 01 Oct 2020 8:43:34 +03:00 As cases of coronavirus tick up again in New York, particularly in neighborhoods with significant populations of Orthodox Jews, some residents of those areas say they feel attacked or insulted, accusing authorities of creating a stigma based on their faith. For two weeks the positivity rate -- the proportion of positive results out of the total number of tests performed -- has been rising in America's most populous city. After 23,800 deaths, and months as the globe's epicenter of the pandemic, New York recently had become a model of containment. But after long hovering around one percent, that key positivity indicator on Tuesday exceeded three percent, what Mayor Bill de Blasio called "cause for real concern." According to authorities, the most significant jumps involve neighborhoods of Brooklyn where ultra-Orthodox Jewish populations are substantial, and coincided with gatherings linked to the recent holidays of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. Governor Andrew Cuomo also said cases are spiking in parts of the New York suburbs that are home to Orthodox communities, saying he was set to meet with religious leaders to discuss combatting the spread. The mayor said the city was sending police and health workers to impacted neighborhoods to promote distancing and mask-wearing -- and to issue summons if necessary to anyone refusing to comply. "This is an inflection point," de Blasio said. "We have to take more action at this point... we will be escalating with each day depending on what we see happening on the ground." Feel attacked City Hall is aiming not to single out New York's diverse Jewish communities by name, but tensions are palpable. Last Friday, health officials faced heckling during an outreach effort at a Brooklyn park. "Brooklyn is not a Jewish community, we are part of the community," said Steve Zuker, 52, speaking in front of the Landaus Shul, a synagogue in the Midwood neighborhood where the positivity rate is approaching six percent. "We feel attackesio said. "We have to take more action at this point... we will be escalating with each day depending on what we see happening on the ground."</p> <p><strong>Feel attacked</strong></p> <p>City Hall is aiming not to single out New York's diverse Jewish communities by name, but tensions are palpable.</p> <p>Last Friday, health officials faced heckling during an outreach effort at a Brooklyn park.</p> <p>"Brooklyn is not a Jewish community, we are part of the community," said Steve Zuker, 52, speaking in front of the Landaus Shul, a synagogue in the Midwood neighborhood where the positivity rate is approaching six percent.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10924672> <p>"We feel attacked, and when you are attacked on your belief, people attack back," he said.</p> <p>Some people also cite several tweets that the mayor posted as the epidemic peaked in April: de Blasio triggered fury after threatening "the Jewish community" with summons and arrest after a large crowd of Hasidic Jews gathered for a rabbi's funeral in Brooklyn's Williamsburg neighborhood.</p> <p>According to Zuker, his community leaders are promoting awareness of COVID-19 risks, while also distributing masks and adding temporary spaces to allow for social distancing of some 2,000 worshippers.</p> <p>But, he acknowledges some people dismiss the risks and don't want to follow recommendations -- as boys from the synagogue shout "fake news" at journalists.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10924673> <p>Zuker says some people believe they have antibodies and are safe from further infection, using that idea as an excuse not to exercise social distancing.</p> <p>"You try to provide and do the right thing, and the rest, we believe in God -- hopefully he is going to do the right thing," he said, pointing skyward.</p> <p><strong>Tensions rising</strong></p> <p>In these neighborhoods as in many others nationwide, the approaching presidential election has fostered polarization.</p> <p>Speaking in front of the Midwood synagogue, one young man, who identified himself by his initials M.E., accused the "liberal media" and "Socialist party" of sowing divisions.</p> <p>"People just try to destroy us," the 20-year-old said. "We're trying to be careful ... For people to say that we are not being careful, it's insulting."</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10924674> <p>Akiva, a 38-year-old teacher at a Yeshiva school, aims to keep calm amid the agitation -- and emphasizes the Orthodox community is not a united block, and includes many viewpoints.</p> <p>For Akiva, the son and brother of doctors, the rise in positive cases is linked to the fact that for several months infections stayed minimal, so social distancing relaxed.</p> <p>"Now it's moving up again, so I think you're going to see compliance jumping,"&nbsp;he said.Leading rabbis have mobilized to encourage precautions, Akiva said: "Nothing's going to change overnight, but I do think that has definitely helped."&nbsp;</p> message 58050460 Neo-Nazis target Northern European Jews on Yom Kippur Extremist movement reportedly takes part in anti-Semitic actions in some 20 different cities across Scandinavia, Iceland; Finnish court hits back against group, issuing cease-and-desist order i24NEWS https://www.ynetnews.com/article/SkGwjBfUv Wed, 30 Sep 2020 22:32:59 +03:00 A neo-Nazi group known as the Nordic Resistance Movement targeted Jews in Scandinavia and Iceland with anti-Semitic campaigns in the week leading up to Yom Kippur - the holiest day in the Jewish calendar. Reports published on websites affiliated with the extremist movement claimed that the members took part in anti-Semitic actions in approximately 20 different cities. "Pictures allegedly... show members confronting Jewish worshipers and standing in front of synagogues, anti-Semitic posters placed and flyer distributions in public areas," according to The Jerusalem Post. The movement claimed it had chosen Yom Kippur to protest against Jews, in order to "make the Nordic people aware of foreign customs and Zionist plans throughout the Nordic region," and included references to shechita (kosher ritual slaughter), circumcision and kapparot (a short ceremony undertaken before Yom Kippur where in some communities a live chicken - and in others a handful of coins - is swung around a penitent's head). The Post cited the Helsinki Times, which reported that "the Supreme Court of Finland issued a cease-and-desist order to the Nordic Resistance Movement last week, marking the first such order issued since the 1970s. The court supported its ruling, declaring that the "objectives of the organization were in violation of the foundations of a democratic society." World Jewish Congress (WJC) President Ronald S. Lauder blasted the coordinated campaign, remarking that 2020 was the second year in succession that "anti-Semitism had reared its ugly head in Europe." In 2019, a far-right assailant attempted to gain entry to a synagogue in Halle, Germany, but security doors prevented his entry. Lauder called on Nordic governments to follow Finland's lead and outright ban the movement. "The Nordic Resistance Movement represents a violent, racist, anti-Semitic ideology, and should be outlawed. Perpetrators of this type of incitement against Jews, horrifically disseminated on the most sJC) President Ronald S. Lauder blasted the coordinated campaign, remarking that 2020 was the second year in succession that "anti-Semitism had reared its ugly head in Europe." In 2019, a far-right assailant attempted to gain entry to a synagogue in Halle, Germany, but security doors prevented his entry.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10706458> <p>Lauder called on Nordic governments to follow Finland's lead and outright ban the movement.</p> <p>"The Nordic Resistance Movement represents a violent, racist, anti-Semitic ideology, and should be outlawed. Perpetrators of this type of incitement against Jews, horrifically disseminated on the most solemn day of the Jewish year, must be prosecuted to the full extent of the law," he maintained.</p> message 58049710 Study: 1st Berlin film festival chief had major Nazi-era role Alfred Bauer, who led the 'Berlinale' from 1951 to 1976, systematically shrouded his role after 1945, trying to portray himself as having been a 'convinced and active opponent' of the regime Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/rJOVtZz8v Wed, 30 Sep 2020 19:38:25 +03:00 A study has concluded that the founding director of the Berlin International Film Festival made a "not insignificant" contribution to the German film system under Nazi rule and later covered up his role, festival organizers said Wednesday. Alfred Bauer led the "Berlinale" from 1951 to 1976, building the festival into a major draw for then-West Berlin. It is now one of the major European film festivals, along with Cannes and Venice. In January, the festival suspended a prize named for Bauer after German newspaper Die Zeit reported that he was a senior figure in the Nazis' moviemaking bureaucracy. It said it hadn't previously been aware of Bauer having held an important position during the Nazi era and commissioned a study from Germany's Leibniz Institute for Contemporary History. The study's editor concluded that "Alfred Bauer made a not insignificant contribution to the functioning of the German film system during the Nazi dictatorship and thus to the stabilization and legitimation of Nazi rule" with his work starting in 1942 at the Reichsfilmintendanz, a body that steered Nazi film policy, a summary released by the festival said Wednesday. "Bauer systematically shrouded this role after 1945," it added. Files that have been viewed so far allow only "limited statements about Bauer's personal decision-making authority and his creative leeway," it said. After the war, Bauer tried to portray himself as having been a "convinced and active opponent" of the regime, according to the summary. His defense strategies, it added, "reveal Bauer's ambitious, almost unscrupulous opportunism, which may also have influenced his closeness to the Nazi regime." After he died in 1986, the festival inaugurated an Alfred Bauer Prize, which was awarded to "a feature film that opens up new perspectives in the field of cinematic art." It was one of several Silver Bear awards, including for best actor and director, bestowed alongside the prize for the best film, the Golden Bear. Inp>After the war, Bauer tried to portray himself as having been a "convinced and active opponent" of the regime, according to the summary.&nbsp;</p> <p>His defense strategies, it added, "reveal Bauer's ambitious, almost unscrupulous opportunism, which may also have influenced his closeness to the Nazi regime."</p> <p>After he died in 1986, the festival inaugurated an Alfred Bauer Prize, which was awarded to "a feature film that opens up new perspectives in the field of cinematic art."&nbsp;</p> <p>It was one of several Silver Bear awards, including for best actor and director, bestowed alongside the prize for the best film, the Golden Bear.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10697777> <p>In August, the festival said that the already-suspended prize "will no longer be awarded in the future."&nbsp;</p> <p>That announcement came as it said its acting prizes will become gender-neutral at the event's next edition in February, with prizes to be awarded for best leading and supporting performances rather than for best actor and actress.</p> <p><br></p> message 58048720 Sweden allocates $1.1mil for country's first Holocaust museum Culture Ministry says the museum, established in either Stockholm of Malmo, will focus on Scandinavian survivors, with a center devoted to Raoul Wallenberg, a Swedish diplomat who saved thousands of Jews in WWII i24NEWS https://www.ynetnews.com/article/S19MNeGLP Wed, 30 Sep 2020 15:46:10 +03:00 The Swedish government has allocated $1.1 million to an organization tasked with establishing the country's first Holocaust museum. The Culture Ministry said last week the government already transferred the sum to the Living History Forum, a Stockholm-based government agency that provides educational materials on the Holocaust, human rights and tolerance. The money will be used to collect documents and interview Holocaust survivors to make up the museum's exhibits. In 2018, Sweden said it was planning to build a Holocaust museum with a focus on survivors from the Scandinavian country and a center devoted to Raoul Wallenberg, a Swedish diplomat who saved thousands of Hungarian Jews during the Holocaust. Many of the details about the museum, including the opening date, its location and whether it will operate as an independent government agency, are still unclear. Lawmakers are debating whether the museum should be located in the capital, Stockholm, or in Malmö, a city that has seen a surge in anti-Semitism over the recent years. "The Holocaust is a crime against humanity unprecedented in our history," the Culture Ministry said in its statement. "Its memory and his lessons must be preserved and passed on." message 58044680 Orthodox Jewish areas in NYC may get virus-related fines New York City officials say they will start issuing fines in several Haredi neighborhoods to people who refuse to wear masks and could order further crackdowns including the closing of nonessential businesses Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/r1vOX11WIP Tue, 29 Sep 2020 22:4:24 +03:00 Alarmed by a spike in coronavirus infections in a few Orthodox Jewish neighborhoods, New York City officials will start issuing fines in those areas to people who refuse to wear masks, Mayor Bill de Blasio said Tuesday. De Blasio said he was sending teams of hundreds outreach workers and contact tracers to nine Brooklyn and Queens ZIP codes that have seen an upswing in positive COVID-19 tests in hopes of avoiding harsher enforcement measures. Those workers will be handing out masks, but also insisting that people put them on if they are in a place where they could be within 6 feet of other people. “Anyone who refuses to wear a face covering will be told that if they don't put one on they will be fined, and anyone who still refuses will be fined. That will happen aggressively," de Blasio said. “We don't want to fine people. If we have to, we will," he added. The Democratic mayor warned he could order further crackdowns including the closing of nonessential businesses and bans on gatherings if things don't improve. Private schools and child care centers could be closed if people refuse to comply with coronavirus guidelines, de Blasio said. “It is a situation at this point that is very serious and we need to have all options on the table," de Blasio said. The nine ZIP codes accounted for 25% of the city's positive tests in the last two weeks though they are collectively home to just 7% of the city's population, city Health Commissioner Dr. Dave Chokshi said. De Blasio spoke as public schools in the city welcomed some elementary school students back to their classrooms for the first time since March. He said there is so far no evidence of the virus spike affecting public schools in the areas where positive test rates have risen because the communities that are experiencing higher rates of infection don't send their children to public schools. The mayor and the city's police department have had a fraught relationship over coronavirus enforcement with residents of sojust 7% of the city's population, city Health Commissioner Dr. Dave Chokshi said.</p> <p>De Blasio spoke as public schools in the city welcomed some elementary school students back to their classrooms for the first time since March. He said there is so far no evidence of the virus spike affecting public schools in the areas where positive test rates have risen because the communities that are experiencing higher rates of infection don't send their children to public schools.</p> <p>The mayor and the city's police department have had a fraught relationship over coronavirus enforcement with residents of some predominantly Hasidic sections of the city.</p> <p>In the spring, police officers were brought in to break up large weddings and public funerals that brought hundreds of largely unmasked people together in those neighborhoods, while applying a lighter touch when dealing with crowds in city parks.</p> <p>This time there is little question about where the city is seeing infections spike.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10697876> <p>One zip code in the Gravesend section of Brooklyn has recorded more than 400 new coronavirus cases since Sept. 1. By comparison, the Corona section of Queens, which was ground zero for the New York City outbreak in the spring, has seen just 62 new cases despite having a third more population.</p> <p>New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, speaking in Albany as de Blasio held his daily coronavirus briefing in New York City, also addressed the increase in virus cases in Orthodox Jewish neighborhoods inside and outside of the city.</p> <p>“This is a concern for their community," Cuomo said. "It’s also a public health concern for surrounding communities. And I’ve said from Day One, these public health rules apply to every religion. Atheists. It just applies to every citizen in the state of New York, period.”</p> <p><br></p> message 58042160 Preserving the memory of Babyn Yar The Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial Center hopes not only to tell the historic facts of the mass murder of Jews but provide an emotional journey as well Liat Zand https://www.ynetnews.com/article/Hk6uK00xIv Tue, 29 Sep 2020 12:50:13 +03:00 On September 29, 1941 the Jewish residents of Ukrainian capital Kiev were told to assemble in the town square. The Nazis who had conquered the city were outraged by a number of explosions that had occurred. Tens of thousand of Jews who arrived at the square were marched towards the Jewish cemetery and in the direction of Babyn Yar, a ravine on the outskirts of Kiev, where they were told to discard their personal belongings. Shots were heard as people were told to advance. Anyone trying to turn back was stopped. Between September 29 and 30 1941, a total of 33,771 Jews were shot dead and thrown into a mass grave dug in advance of the massacre. This was probably the largest extermination of Jews carried out in such a short period of time. Another 15,000 were murdered in the same way in the ensuring year, along with people who were ill, Gypsies, prisoners of war and anyone who was captured resisting the Nazis. Babyn Yar symbolizes the massacre of 1.5 million Jews in Eastern Europe during the Holocaust. The ravine of Babyn Yar still exists outside Kiev. In recent years, efforts have been underway to establish a unique museum and educational center on the site, to commemorate the memory of the victims. Construction is expected to be completed by 2026. The Ukraine-born Natan Sharansky, a former prisoner of Zion, Author, politician, chair of the Jewish Agency and the recipient of the Israel Prize, has been involved in the project since 2016. The commemoration center will be built with funds donated by philanthropists with roots in the Ukraine and with the help of the Kiev municipality and the support of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, who described the initiative as important for his country. The cost of the project is estimated at $100 million. The center is expected to be the most prominent commemoration of East European Jews murdered during the Second World War, equal in importance to large museums such as the Yad Vashem Holocaust Remembrance Center and the recipient of the Israel Prize, has been involved in the project since 2016.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10654238> <p>The commemoration center will be built with funds donated by philanthropists with roots in the Ukraine and with the help of the Kiev municipality and the support of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, who described the initiative as important for his country.</p> <p>The cost of the project is estimated at $100 million.&nbsp;</p> <p>The center is expected to be the most prominent commemoration of East European Jews murdered during the Second World War, equal in importance to large museums such as the Yad Vashem Holocaust Remembrance Center in Jerusalem and the Holocaust Museum in Washington D.C.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10654239> <p>There are already new testimonials collected and technologically advanced educational plans written specifically for the younger generation.</p> <p>"Babyn Yar is for me a symbol of the Holocaust," Sharansky said. "It had not begun with extermination camps. The Nazis and their helpers shot Jews to death in every town they conquered. Babyn Yar was the largest massacre. Nearly 34,000 Jews were murdered there and 1.5 million were killed in the same manner elsewhere."</p> <p>"I was raised in Stalino, known today as Donetsk in the Ukraine," Sharansky said.&nbsp;</p> <p>"Seventy-five thousand people were murdered and dumped into mass graves but that history was all but erased from memory with only the Red Army's victory over Germany being commemorated, until the fall of communism. There was no mention of the Holocaust of the Jews.</p> <p>"A memorial was built at the site of the mass murder in the 1970s, but it had no mention of the murder of Jews and eventually became a waste dumping ground. There was even a plan to build a stadium there but until now there was nothing but a swamp," Sharansky said.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10654240> <p>"In 1975, I was arrested on my way to Babyn Yar for a memorial commemorating the massacre. Authorities wanted no mention of the extermination of Jews. When in 1991 Ukraine became an independent state, the denial of history ended," he said.&nbsp;</p> <p>"There was no longer a desire to hide the past. Up until that time there were no outward signs of Jewish life, except of course in acts of anti-Semitism," he said.</p> <p>With the fall of the Soviet Union and the establishment of an independent Ukrainian state, Jews living there were allowed to immigrate to Israel, Synagogues were opened, and several memorials built.&nbsp;</p> <p>"But for various reasons there was no real effort to do more," Sharansky said.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10654241> <p>"The mayor of Kiev approached me during his visit to Israel and raised the idea to build a museum and a center for historic research of the Holocaust. He was accompanied by two Jewish philanthropists, local benefactor Victor Pinchuk and Mikhail Fridman who established the Genesis Philanthropy Group for Jewish identity around the world, both Jews," said Sharansky.</p> <p>"I was invited to join their initiative, which gave me a meaningful feeling of closure," he said.&nbsp;</p> <p>The Babyn Yar project now enjoys the backing of many world leaders and public figures such as former German foreign minister Joschka Fischer and World Jewish Congress chair Ron Lauder, as well as numerous Jews who all hailed from the Ukraine and had family among the victims in Babi Yar and elsewhere.</p> <p>"Our goal is to tell the events of Babyn Yar," the museum's artistic director Ilya Khrzhanovsky said. "We will stick to the historic facts and narrative that were silenced for decades. We have been working with historians around the world towards that end and our website is accessible to all."</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10654242> <p>"It is our duty to tell the historic truth as recorded by historians but the facts, such as testimonies, documents and photos are just one way by which we can tell the message 58039730 Rabbis ponder coronavirus queries of ultra-Orthodox Jewish life Months into the pandemic, religious leaders in Israel are finally addressing questions on how to maintain proper Jewish observance under the restrictions of the outbreak, with country's Haredi minority disproportionately affected by COVID-19 Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/r1bDys1IP Mon, 28 Sep 2020 23:55:19 +03:00 Must an observant Jew who has lost his sense of taste and smell because of COVID-19 recite blessings for food and drink? Can one bend the metal nosepiece of a surgical face mask on Shabbat? May one participate in communal prayers held in a courtyard from a nearby balcony? Months into the coronavirus pandemic, ultra-Orthodox rabbis in Israel are addressing questions like these as their legions of followers seek advice on how to maintain proper Jewish observance under the restrictions of the outbreak. Social distancing and nationwide lockdowns have become a reality around the globe in 2020, but for religious Jews they can further complicate rites and customs that form the fabric of daily life in Orthodox communities. Many of these customs are performed in groups and public gatherings, making it especially challenging for the religious public to maintain its lifestyle. One religious publisher in Jerusalem released a book in July with over 600 pages of guidance from 46 prominent rabbis. Topics range from socially distanced circumcisions (allowed) to Passover Seders over Zoom (forbidden) to praying with a quorum from a balcony (it’s complicated). One rabbi responded to a query about blessings on food for those who lost their sense of taste and smell due to the coronavirus. His ruling? Prayers are still required, for “even though one does not sense the flavor of the food, his intestines nonetheless benefit and are satisfied by the food and its nutrition.” He then launched into a two-page legal argument citing rabbinic sources from the Talmud on down. The collection — titled “Havieni Hadarav,” Hebrew for “Bring me to his chambers” — is one of many pamphlets, books, radio and social media Q&As published in recent months addressing matters of halacha, or Jewish religious law, during the pandemic. Ultra-Orthodox Jews make up a little over 10% of Israel’s 9 million citizens and adhere to a close observance of Jewish law. The foundations of halacha are built on the Torah’s he food and its nutrition.” He then launched into a two-page legal argument citing rabbinic sources from the Talmud on down.</p> <p>The collection — titled “Havieni Hadarav,” Hebrew for “Bring me to his chambers” — is one of many pamphlets, books, radio and social media Q&amp;As published in recent months addressing matters of halacha, or Jewish religious law, during the pandemic.</p> <p>Ultra-Orthodox Jews make up a little over 10% of Israel’s 9 million citizens and adhere to a close observance of Jewish law. The foundations of halacha are built on the Torah’s commandments and prohibitions, and the Talmud, a codification of Jewish law written down over the course of the early centuries of the first millennium.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10653416> <p>Orthodox Jewish practice is the byproduct of generations of rabbis issuing legal arguments and rulings. Their decisions, known as responsa, can sometimes be lenient and other times strict.</p> <p>“Every time a rabbi is asked a question, he has to essentially do what a judge would do, and bring up previous cases which he builds upon to come to his decision in this particular case,” said Issamar Ginzberg, a Jerusalem-based Hassidic rabbi. The method of questions and responses has underpinned centuries of the Jewish legal code.</p> <p>There’s no way to say for sure how many people will follow this particular book’s rulings. But there are hundreds of thousands of ultra-Orthodox Jews, and opinions by prominent rabbis often carry great significance in daily life within the community.</p> <p>“It’s more like a law textbook than a novel on the bestseller list,” said Ginzberg.</p> <p>Rabbi Natan Feldman, head of the Tzuf Publishing House and editor of “Havieni Hadarav,” said the company has sold around 3,000 copies of the book, which meets “the need of the hour.”</p> <p>“If people didn’t have it, they would err in all kinds of ways,” Feldman said. “It’s something with a lot of utility.”</p> <p>Israel’s ultra-Orthodox minority has been disproportionately affected by the coronavirus pandemic, with cities and neighborhoods where they live among the country’s current hot zones. Overall, Israel has recorded around 200,000 cases of the novel coronavirus and more than 1,300 deaths. The Health Ministry does not break down those numbers by population groups.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10653417> <p>Religious areas have been hard hit in part because they tend to be poorer and crowded, but also because of the tight-knit communal lifestyles, in which synagogues and seminaries play a central role. Some ultra-Orthodox schools have remained open in defiance of a nationwide lockdown imposed earlier this month to help clamp down on the country’s surge in new cases.&nbsp;</p> <p>While some rabbis have resisted orders to limit crowd sizes at prayers, especially for the current High Holiday season and this week’s gatherings for Yom Kippur, or the Day of Atonement, the government has tried to work with religious leaders to spread the word on promoting public health regulations and restricting the sizes of prayer gatherings.</p> <p>Many of the responsa contend with the complications of holding prayers — which traditionally require a quorum of 10 adult men — outdoors and in a manner that complies with social distance regulations. The rabbis offered differing opinions on what the law allows regarding participating in a minyan held in a communal courtyard from a balcony above.</p> <p>Innovation has helped overcome some of the challenges of the lockdown, but has also raised additional concerns for observant Jews. For example, can one enter a hospital on the Jewish Shabbat if there is a thermal camera at the entrance that takes visitors’ temperatures?</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10653418> <p>Activating such an electronic device could violate multiple prohibitions, so Rabbi Asher Weiss — a prominent ultra-Orthodox legal scholar involved in “Havieni Hadarav” — advised refraining from entering if only vi message 58036360 France vows to protect its Jewish community after stabbing Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin visits a synagogue ahead of Yom Kippur, telling reporters over 7,000 police and soldiers will be protecting Jewish services over the weekend after Friday's attack outside former offices of Charlie Hebdo Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/S1diryCBv Sun, 27 Sep 2020 13:20:49 +03:00 France’s interior minister promised Sunday to protect France’s Jewish community from extremists after a double stabbing in Paris blamed on Islamic terrorism. Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin visited a synagogue Sunday ahead of the evening start of Yom Kippur, the Jewish Day of Atonement, and said more than 7,000 police and soldiers are protecting Jewish services this weekend. France has Europe’s largest Jewish community. “I came to assure ... members of France’s Jewish community of the protection of the state,” Darmanin told reporters. “Because we know that Jews are particularly targeted by Islamist attacks and we should obviously protect them.” Darmanin defended authorities’ handling of a double stabbing Friday outside the former offices of the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo, saying intelligence services have prevented 32 potential terrorist attacks over the past three years. Coordinated Islamic extremist attacks on Charlie Hebdo’s Paris newsroom and a kosher supermarket in January 2015 killed 17 people, and Friday’s stabbing came as the trial into those attacks is under way. The suspected assailant in Friday’s attack told investigators that he was targeting Charlie Hebdo after it recently republished caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad, according to a judicial official. Two people were wounded and several suspects are in custody. One suspect arrested after Friday’s stabbing was later released — and his lawyer says that he had tried to stop the assailant and should be considered a hero instead. Lawyer Lucie Simon told France-Info that her client, a 33-year-old French resident from Algeria identified only as Youssef, chased the attacker. Simon said the assailant threatened Youssef with a kitchen cleaver, so Youssef fled and told police — who promptly arrested him. message 58035410 Yom Kippur synagogue attack leaves German Jews still uneasy Amid reports of increasing anti-Semitism and the Halle attack still fresh in their minds, many German Jews wonder whether increased security at Jewish institutions is enough as the community still scrabbles for funding Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/By94zsTSv Sun, 27 Sep 2020 9:4:24 +03:00 As Jews around the world gather Sunday night to mark the beginning of Yom Kippur, many in Germany remain uneasy about going together to their houses of worship to pray, a year after a white-supremacist targeted a synagogue in the eastern city of Halle on the holiest day in Judaism. If the assailant — armed with multiple firearms and explosives — had managed to break into the building, there’s no telling how many of the 52 worshippers inside might have been killed. As it was, he turned his attentions on people outside, killing a passer-by and a man at a kebab stand before he was apprehended. Since then, security has been increased at Jewish institutions across the country, but many wonder whether it is enough amid reports of increasing anti-Semitism and the Halle attack still fresh in their minds. Naomi Henkel-Guembel was inside the building that day a year ago and didn’t immediately understand what was happening when she heard a loud bang outside. Together with other young Jews from Berlin, the 29-year-old had traveled to the eastern German city to celebrate Yom Kippur, which fell on Oct. 9 in 2019, with the small, aging community there. She still remembers the scene vividly as the 28-year-old German right-wing extremist tried to barge into the synagogue, shooting at the heavy door in an unsuccessful attempt to force it open, then throwing explosives over a wall into a cemetery inside the compound while livestreaming the attack. “When I heard the second explosion and saw a light flash outside the window, I knew that this was an anti-Semitic incident,” said Henkel-Guembel. “Still, I was not aware of the dimension of what was happening outside of the sanctuary — I would have never thought that somebody would throw explosive devices at the synagogue and the adjacent cemetery.” The attack suspect, Stephan Balliet, is currently on trial on charges of murder for the killings outside the synagogue. He explained his motivation to the court: “Jews are the main cause ofg the attack.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10600661> <p>“When I heard the second explosion and saw a light flash outside the window, I knew that this was an anti-Semitic incident,” said Henkel-Guembel.</p> <p>“Still, I was not aware of the dimension of what was happening outside of the sanctuary — I would have never thought that somebody would throw explosive devices at the synagogue and the adjacent cemetery.”</p> <p>The attack suspect, Stephan Balliet, is currently on trial on charges of murder for the killings outside the synagogue. He explained his motivation to the court: “Jews are the main cause of white genocide and want to establish a new world order.”</p> <p>The attack, one of the most violent and overt anti-Semitic acts in postwar history, caused shockwaves across Germany, which considers protecting its Jewish minority of about 200,000 a special responsibility after the Nazi genocide of 6 million Jews.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10600662> <p>While many Jewish institutions get some kind of protection — particularly on Jewish holidays — the Halle synagogue didn’t have any. Now steps are being taken to ensure wider-spread security, said Josef Schuster, the president of the Central Council of Jews in Germany.</p> <p>People “were clearly more worried to send their children to school or kindergarten or to visit Jewish institutions,” Schuster told The Associated Press in an interview this week.</p> <p>“But after that day, security staff in front of synagogues and other Jewish places was increased and it has stayed that way.”</p> <p>Since then, Schuster said, state authorities have developed new security measures for Jewish houses of worship and all 16 German states have given varying amounts of financial support to spend on boosting security. Bavaria, for example, provided 8 million euros ($9.37 million) to its Jewish communities and Saxony-Anhalt, where Halle is located, committed some 2.4 million euros over 2020-2021 to help better secure Jewish sites.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10600663> <p>Earlier this month, the federal government said it would also provide 22 million euros to improve security.</p> <p>Still, the deputy head of Germany’s Federal Criminal Police Office, Juergen Peter, acknowledged recently that “the protection of Jewish institutions is better than last year, but it is not good enough nationwide.”</p> <p>“Overall, we cannot be satisfied with the current status quo,” Peter said, adding that on average, there had been more than five anti-Semitic incidents registered per day in Germany in 2019. Those included physical attacks, property damage, threats, anti-Semitic propaganda and other acts of malicious behavior such as giving the stiff-armed Nazi salute.</p> <p>Ronen Steinke, an investigative reporter with the Sueddeutsche Zeitung newspaper, studied the issue in depth after the Halle attack and found that too often Jews are left to avert the danger of possible assaults themselves.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10600664> <p>In his book “Terror Against Jews,” published earlier this year after he visited more than 20 Jewish communities around the country, Steinke found that while authorities are helpful with making security assessments, the communities themselves are often left to implement the official suggestions.</p> <p>Smaller communities, in particular, struggle and frequently end up not getting enough funds “because they have problems with the bureaucracy or because they can’t agree with the state on a common line,” Steinke said.</p> <p>“Danger prevention is the task of the state, not the job of those who are threatened by danger,” said Steinke, who himself is a German Jew.</p> <p>Even if security can be perfected, that does not mean there is no work left to be done by the German authorities, he said.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10600665> <p>“It’s a perverted state of siege, in which one can only go to school or religious service if people with pistols have to watch out for you,” said Steinke.</p> <p>For Naomi Henkel-Guembel it has been a year of soul searching after Halle.</p> <p>“The event left deep marks, not just for those who were immediately affected, but for Jews in Germany in general,” said Henkel-Guembel, who is currently studying in Berlin to become a rabbi.</p> <p>The granddaughter of Holocaust survivors, Henkel-Guembel grew up in Munich, then moved to Israel after her high school graduation in search of a Jewish homeland. Today she shares her time between both countries.</p> <p>Since Halle, she said, she and others who were at the Yom Kippur service have been questioning whether Germany is where they want to build their future lives as Jews.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10600666> <p>For herself, Henkel-Guembel said she has decided to stay, and has even joined the trial of the Halle attacker as a co-plaintiff, as allowed under German law.</p> <p>“The question is whether one leaves and surrenders the space to the attacker and his abettors — or whether one opposes them,” she said.</p> message 58031660 Ruth Bader Ginsburg's empathy was born of discrimination and Jewish history Driven by the Jewish values of pursuing justice and tikkun olam, the trailblazing Supreme Court judge told an audience in 2017 that Jews 'are taught to do right, to love mercy, do justice, not because there's gonna be any reward in heaven or punishment in hell' Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/BJalQf9BD Sat, 26 Sep 2020 8:50:58 +03:00 In the Jewish tradition, burials usually take place within 24 hours of death. But Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died Sept. 18, was lying in state nearly a week later Thursday at the Supreme Court where she served as justice for 27 years, and Friday at the U.S. Capitol. "Even though it generally goes against Jewish tradition, the fact that Americans will have a chance to pause in front and say thank you to her shows the depth of her legacy," said Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center. While politicians heatedly debate over replacing Ginsburg on the court, others are reflecting on how she advocated for women's rights and how she tried to reach just decisions as a jurist, all informed by her Jewish upbringing. The Torah stresses the pursuit of justice where the outcome and the means to it are just, Cooper said, and those beliefs were part of Ginsburg's "Jewish spiritual DNA." "She lived and upheld the highest standards for a public servant," he said. "For a judge, for an American, and we can say here also, with pride, for someone who is Jewish." Ginsburg, born in 1933, spoke publicly about her religious foundations growing up during the Holocaust and before bat mitzvahs were commonplace. A formative moment came at age 17 when her mother died and women could not be part of the minyan, the quorum of 10 Jewish adults for the prayer service for the dead. Ginsburg went to Harvard Law School in 1956, a time when there were few women at the institution and Jews faced discrimination. She later transferred to Columbia and graduated at the top of her class. During a 2017 Rosh Hashanah visit to a historic synagogue in Washington, Ginsburg told worshipers she believed being Jewish helped her empathize with other minority groups. She noted that she and other Jewish justices who have served on the court have held some similar views, something she linked to their shared heritage. ''The Jewish religion is an ethical religion. That is, we are taught to d <p>Ginsburg went to Harvard Law School in 1956, a time when there were few women at the institution and Jews faced discrimination. She later transferred to Columbia and graduated at the top of her class.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10653439> <p>During a 2017 Rosh Hashanah visit to a historic synagogue in Washington, Ginsburg told worshipers she believed being Jewish helped her empathize with other minority groups. She noted that she and other Jewish justices who have served on the court have held some similar views, something she linked to their shared heritage.</p> <p>''The Jewish religion is an ethical religion. That is, we are taught to do right, to love mercy, do justice, not because there's gonna be any reward in heaven or punishment in hell," Ginsburg told the audience.&nbsp;</p> <p>"We live righteously because that's how people should live and not anticipating any award in the hereafter.''</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10653440> <p>During the visit she also recounted what she called the ''Great Yom Kippur controversy'' of 1995, when then-Chief Justice William Rehnquist scheduled arguments on the holiest day of the Jewish calendar.&nbsp;</p> <p>Ginsburg and Justice Stephen Breyer pointed out that doing so forced Jewish lawyers to decide between their court appearances and their religion, and Rehnquist canceled the arguments.</p> <p>While visiting Israel in 2018 to receive a lifetime achievement award from the Genesis Prize Foundation, a prominent Jewish organization, Ginsburg said she was driven by the Jewish values of pursuing justice and the concept of <em>tikkun olam </em>- repairing the world.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10653441> <p>"I am a judge, born, raised and proud of being a Jew. The demand for justice, for peace, for enlightenment runs through the entirety of Jewish history and Jewish tradition," she said at the award ceremony.&nbsp;</p> <p>''I hope, in all the years I have the good fortune to continue serving on the bench of the Supreme Court of the United States, I will have the strength and courage to remain steadfast in the service of that demand."</p> <p>Ginsburg understood what it meant for people to be excluded and ''othered'' and fought against that, said Sheila Katz, CEO of the National Council of Jewish Women.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10653442> <p>"It is because of Justice Ginsburg that today women have the equal protection of the law and that ideas that seemed radical are common sense because of her," Katz said.&nbsp;</p> <p>"'I believe that her Jewish identity played a critical role in her values and in the way she went about being a judge. ... She has said that."</p> <p>But Ginsburg's focus extended beyond Jewish women, Katz noted: ''She operated on the bench to make things better for everyone, and that's what her legacy is.''</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10653443> <p>Farhana Khera, executive director of the civil rights organization Muslim Advocates, said in a statement that Ginsburg was ''a tireless defender of our nation's promise of freedom, justice and equality for all - truly all. So much of what I do as a civil rights advocate, an attorney, a woman, a Muslim and as an American is possible because of what she accomplished.''</p> <p>Speaking at Ginsburg's memorial service Wednesday, Rabbi Lauren Holtzblatt, of the Adas Israel Congregation in Washington, D.C., said: "The Torah is relentless in reminding and instructing and commanding that we never forget those who live in the shadows."&nbsp;</p> <p>She said that concept is written into the U.S. Constitution and Ginsburg insisted the document deliver on that promise. According to Hotzblatt, Ginsburg "carried out that work in every chapter of her life."</p> <DIV id=tvElement3071243></DIV> <p>Rabbi Sam Levine of the East Midwood Jewish Center in Brooklyn, New York, Ginsburg's childhood congregation, said there is a clear link between Jewish teachings and how Ginsburg lived.</p> <p>''There really is a direct correlation message 58020940 First stone laid at Dutch Holocaust Memorial in Amsterdam Ceremonial laying of first stone is the latest step in construction of the Dutch memorial, which will feature the names of more than 102,000 Jews, Roma and Sinti who were murdered in Nazi concentration camps Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/r1ZYpxYSP Wed, 23 Sep 2020 22:6:6 +03:00 A friend of World War II Jewish diarist Anne Frank laid the first stone Wednesday at a new memorial under construction in Amsterdam to honor all Dutch victims of the Holocaust. The ceremonial laying of the first stone, on which the name of a Dutch Holocaust victim was engraved, is the latest step in the construction of the Dutch memorial which will feature the names of more than 102,000 Jews, Roma and Sinti who were murdered in Nazi concentration camps during World War II or who died on their way to the camps. ''I almost can't believe it, but it is now really happening,'' Jacques Grishaver, chairman of the Netherlands Auschwitz Committee, said in a statement. ''The first of the more than 102,000 stones have been laid.'' The last of the stones, each of which is engraved with a name, is expected to be placed in the memorial in March. A Dutch court cleared the way last year for the memorial to be constructed. Amsterdam Municipality had granted permission for construction to start in 2017, but residents argued that it was too big for the location and could cause traffic problems. Jacqueline van Maarsen, who knew Anne Frank before the diarist and her family were captured and sent to Nazi concentration camps, laid a stone engraved by laser with the name, date of birth and age of Dina Frankenhuis, who was murdered, aged 20, on June 4, 1943, at the Sobibor camp. Designed by Polish-Jewish architect Daniel Libeskind, the memorial in the heart of Amsterdam's historic Jewish Quarter will be made up of walls shaped to form four Hebrew letters spelling out a word that translates as ''In Memory Of.'' message 58015190 Kibbutz tweaks its name to honor late U.S. judge Ginsburg Ramat Hashofet in northern Israel changes its name for a week in honor of the Jewish U.S. Supreme Court justice who passed away last week after a long battle with cancer Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/ryrRpnDHP Tue, 22 Sep 2020 22:33:7 +03:00 An Israeli kibbutz has changed its name to honor the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, in a weeklong tribute to the Jewish American judge. Kibbutz Ramat Hashofet, or The Judge’s Heights, was founded in 1941 and is named after Julian Mack, co-founder of the law review at Harvard Law School and an early supporter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the American Civil Liberties Union. Mack also served as president of the Zionist Organization of America. The kibbutz in northern Israel said this week it was temporarily tweaking its name to Ramat Hashofetet. Hebrew is a gendered language and the change turns the word judge female. Ginsburg died Friday at age 87 from complications of metastatic pancreatic cancer. The kibbutz’ Facebook page was adorned with a banner of its new name beneath a picture of Ginsburg. “We salute Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg 1933-2020 and are changing the kibbutz’ name for one week only,” the picture read. Elad Tesler, a kibbutz member, wrote on Facebook that the idea came from kibbutz dwellers who were honoring “an American Supreme Court justice, a Jew, a champion of human rights in general and of women’s rights specifically. An inspiring, brave woman.” message 58014780 Assaults, arson, slurs: Report finds rising anti-Semitism in Berlin Local research institute documents 410 incidents in German capital during first half of 2020, more than two a day, including physical attacks, property damage, threats, harmful behavior and anti-Semitic propaganda Associated Press https://www.ynetnews.com/article/rkujyKPrP Tue, 22 Sep 2020 20:34:46 +03:00 Small square brass plates set in the pavement remember Jewish residents of Berlin’s Lichtenberg district who were torn from their homes and killed by the Nazis decades ago. Nearby, the charred remains of a Jewish-run bar destroyed by arson last month attest to a hatred that still burns among far-right extremists. The attack on the bar named Morgen Wird Besser, which in English means Tomorrow Will Be Better, underscores the findings of a victim support group that anti-Semitism remains in Germany’s capital 75 years after World War II ended. In a report released Tuesday, the Department for Research and Information on Anti-Semitism Berlin, or RIAS, documented 410 incidents — more than two a day — during the first half of 2020. The group’s count of anti-Semitic acts included six physical attacks, 25 cases of property damage, 20 threats, 58 examples of anti-Semitic propaganda and 301 examples of malicious behavior such as giving the stiff-armed Nazi salute. The report’s publication comes amid nationwide concerns that intensified in October 2019 after an armed man tried to force his way into a synagogue in the central German city of Halle on Judaism’s holiest day, Yom Kippur, then fatally shot two people nearby. The suspect posted an anti-Jewish screed online before the attack. German Chancellor Angela Merkel last week decried how anti-Semitism had become “more visible and uninhibited.” “It is a disgrace, and it shames me deeply,” Merkel said. A national report issued in May showed anti-Semitic crimes in Germany last year reached their highest level since the country started keeping records. The Interior Ministry reported a 13% increase in anti-Semitic crimes to 2,032, more than 93% of which were attributed to the far right. Anti-Muslim crimes also rose 4.4% to 950, more than 90% of them committed by alleged far-right perpetrators. The report Tuesday highlights recent cases in Berlin. Graves were desecrated at a Jewish cemetery in Pankow, a borough where a man also intdeeply,” Merkel said.</p> <p>A national report issued in May showed anti-Semitic crimes in Germany last year reached their highest level since the country started keeping records.</p> <p>The Interior Ministry reported a 13% increase in anti-Semitic crimes to 2,032, more than 93% of which were attributed to the far right. Anti-Muslim crimes also rose 4.4% to 950, more than 90% of them committed by alleged far-right perpetrators.</p> <p>The report Tuesday highlights recent cases in Berlin. Graves were desecrated at a Jewish cemetery in Pankow, a borough where a man also interrupted a woman speaking Hebrew on her phone with a Nazi salute and a shout of “Heil Hitler!”</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10555828> <p>The words “Jew! Hate! J.H.” were sprayed outside a Jewish-owned business in Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf and a swastika was etched into the glass of a restaurant in Schöneberg. In Kreuzberg, 10 “Stolpersteine” — brass memorial plates like the ones near the Lichtenberg bar — were painted black.</p> <p>“Despite the massive restrictions on public life to contain the COVID-19 pandemic since March 17, the number of anti-Semitic incidences was just under the level for the first half of 2019,” said RIAS, which documented 458 incidents for the same period last year.</p> <p>The head of Germany’s Central Council of Jews said the pandemic is acting as a “catalyzer,” with anti-Semitic conspiracy theories circulating online. RIAS documented incidences of protesters wearing Stars of David, the yellow badges persecuted Jews were forced to wear under Nazi rule, at demonstrations against anti-virus measures.</p> <p>Levi Salomon, of the Jewish Forum for Democracy and Against Anti-Semitism, told The Associated Press the problem has been growing for a long time and has become a “huge, huge” issue — not only in Berlin.</p> <p>“I’ve been observing right-wing extremism for more than 20 years across the whole country, and the situation has become far worse than it was 20 years ago,” Salomon said.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10555829> <p>The owner of the bar in Lichtenberg, for example, had been receiving threats since he first opened a Jewish restaurant in the area in 2012. He later converted it to a bar.</p> <p>He declined to speak with the AP for fear of attracting more attention but told Salomon’s group that neo-Nazis entered his bar and smashed bottles in early 2019. The year before, he said, they insulted him as a “dirty Jew” and said they would drive him out of the premises. Anti-Semitic slogans were scrawled outside the pub.</p> <p>The latest threat came the Monday before the arson when an anonymous caller told the bar owner he wasn’t wanted in the neighborhood. Someone then smashed a window and set a couch inside on fire, leading to the almost complete destruction of the bar on Aug. 14.</p> <p>A crude Star of David also was scratched into the door, as were the numbers 2 and 8, an apparent reference to the “Blood and Honor” neo-Nazi network, the owner reported.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10555830> <p>Lichtenberg has “a very active right-wing/far-right scene, which had been very much aware of the fact that the owner of this bar was Jewish,” RIAS researcher Alexander Rasumny said.</p> <p>His group has also tracked threats against individuals involved in fighting anti-Semitism. The mayor of Lichtenberg reported being on an “enemy list” drawn up by right-wing extremists. A prominent Turkish-born local politician said she received threats from neo-Nazis.</p> <p>However, hundreds of residents and others rallied against anti-Semitism outside the bar shortly after the fire. Some held signs with slogans such as “No place for Nazis!” and “No place for extremism.”</p> <p>Following last year’s attack in Halle, Interior Minister Horst Seehofer warned that far-right extremism poses a growing threat in Germany. Since then, authorities have banned several neo-Nazi groups and carried out extensive raids.</p> <IMG id=captionImageElement10555831> <p>But Seehofer has resisted calls for a study on police racism after multiple incidents in the last year involving extremism among officers.</p> <p>Calls for such a study grew stronger last week after more than two dozen officers in western Germany were suspended on suspicion of sharing far-right propaganda in WhatsApp groups. Officials said the chats contained “the most foul and repugnant neo-Nazi, racist and anti-refugee agitation.”</p> <p>In response to the concerns in Berlin, the state prosecutors’ office this month announced a new department focused on hate crimes.</p> <p>Prosecutor Ines Karl, who will head the department, said it will open direct contacts with victim and support groups, provide more transparency of police work and win back trust in the justice system. No additional staff are being hired, however.</p> <p>The Jewish Forum for Democracy and Against Anti-Semitism’s Salomon said more investment is needed to help fight anti-Semitism.</p> <p>“As long as that doesn’t happen, we’re going to really have problems,” Salomon said.</p> message