Monday, 31 July 2017

Palestinian flags flying over American Jewish day camps. Insanity!

When a Jewish day camp in America flies the Palestinian flag as Palestinians are killing Israelis you know that PC in the US has gone off the cliff.
This is what happened at Camp Solomon Schechter.

They claim to be "unabashed pro-Israel." They should call themselves "embarrassing terror supporters."
When criticized, they said they did it to “help develop empathy” and a “teachable moment.”

Some campers and staff were upset by the raising of the Palestinian flag.
Solomon Schechter administration indicated in their email that they raised the flag as a sign of “friendship and acceptance” for a group of visiting Palestinian Muslims and Christians.
What the administration do not say is that Israel has a Christian and Muslim population that were once "Palestinian Arabs" but moved to become Israeli citizens because of the intolerance and hate within Palestinian society.
As reported in the Geller Report on July 30, "David Jacoby, a lifetime Seattleite and longtime member of the Jewish community, expressed disappointment at the actions of the camp. 'Solomon Shechter flying the Palestinian flag is a feel-good bromide that creates the illusion of problem-solving' said Jacoby. 'It’s well-intentioned, but it misses the point. Two decades of peace negotiations between Israel and Palestinians have failed primarily because of the Palestinian’s refusal to recognize Israel as a Jewish state.'"
As Jacoby’s wife, Beth, says, “the time to raise the Palestinian flag over our summer camps is when they stop burning the Israeli flag at theirs.”
I would add "and stop inciting terror and, in Hamas summer camps, stop teaching Palestinian kids to kill Jews."

Fly their flag, if you must, when Palestinians stop slaughtering innocent Israelis in the name of religion or indoctrinated Jew-hatred..
Fly it after their corrupt leaders decide to finally acknowledge the right and existence of the Jewish State of Israel.
Fly it after a permanent peace treaty is signed between Israel and Palestine.

Something tells me we will not see that flag flying in our lifetime - not because we Israeli Jews lack empathy, but because the Palestinian political and religious leadership remains hateful anti-Israel, anti-Jewish inciters.

Barry Shaw is the Senior Associate for Public Diplomacy at the Israel Institute for Strategic Studies. He is also the author of the 2017 best-seller '1917. From Palestine to the Land of Israel' available on Amazon and from Steimatzky bookstores in Israel.

Sunday, 30 July 2017

Preferring Ottoman Turkey to Erdogan's Turkey - a Jewish perspective.

Turkey's leader, Recep Erdogan, was reported as saying Jews should appreciate the Ottoman Empire.
It was the Ottoman Sultans that gave shelter and protection to the Jews fleeing European Catholic persecution, particularly those fleeing the Spanish and Portuguese Inquisitions. 
The Ottoman rule in Palestine was one of benign neglect but it allowed the influx of Russian and Romanian Jews escaping the pogroms of Russia and Romania to build new lives for themselves by developing and nourishing the barren landscape. 
The Ottomans lost control to the harsh revolution of the Young Turks that usurped power and promptly brought death and destruction to the region and Europe.
They allied with the Germans in the Great War. They were guilty of the Armenian genocide and began to impose the same methods against Palestinian Jews. They plundered the Jewish agricultural settlements, deported tens of thousands of Palestinian Jews, confiscated the weapons that left the remaining Jews defenseless, and were about to conduct a slaughter when prevented from doing do, surprisingly by the Germans under whose command their Turkish soldiers were fighting against the Allies. General Erich von Falkenhayn and Colonel Kress von Kessenstein interceded and stopped the ruthless Turkish leader, Djemal Pasha, from slaughtering the Palestinian Jews. By that time, Jews had been hanged and murdered by the Turks in Jaffa.
We witness Erdogan's authoritarian rule. His imprisonment of journalists, academics, opposition supporters, the mass round-up of tens of thousands of Turks last year. The Kurds he is killing today are Turkey's 2017 Armenians.  He hates Israel and supports the internationally recognized terror organisation, Hamas. Turkish Jewry live in fear of this threatening presence. 
Erdogan is today's Djemal Pasha. Yes, Mr. Erdogan. We Jews would much prefer a Turkey ruled by the Ottomans to the one ruled by you. 
Barry Shaw is the author of 2017 best-seller, '1917. From Palestine to the Land of Israel,' which tells of the courageous Palestinian Jews and Christian Zionists who helped drive the Turks out of Palestine and paved the way to the land of Israel.  Available in paperback and Kindle on Amazon and from Steimatzky bookstores in Israel.

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Israel caught in a trap of its own making.

Ever seen how a jackal kills its prey? Usually, it doesn’t kill it with one blow or bite? It surrounds it, it challenges it, it probes for points of weakness. It then gets its claws around the neck of its prey and won’t let go. Whenever the animal struggles it makes itself weaker.
This is what we have been seeing from Israel. We are caught, like an animal, unable to shake off the obsessive hunger of those who have their claws into us and want to kill us.

Like the wounded animal, we didn’t assess the threat, nor appreciate the real danger. In nature, the targeted animal often appears to be so powerful that it could easily resist the deadly jackals. They thought their strong and non-offensive posture would appease the hungry killers into not attacking.

Like the wounded beast, Israel finds itself caught in a trap of its own making. Like that animal, Israel is caught in the jaws of those that want to destroy us.

How did we get to the point that a strong Jewish State is strategically so meek that we have too readily surrendered Judaism’s most holy site to a comparatively weak adversary? It’s down to a failed policy of playing nice.

The thrilling historic announcement, exactly fifty years ago, that “The Temple Mount is in our hands” was true – for a few days. Playing nice began half a century ago when General Moshe Dayan countermanded Motta Gur by saying about the Temple Mount “What is this? The Vatican?” and handed the administration to the Muslim Council.  The battle then was not against Palestinians. Israel was fighting a defensive war against invading Arab armies bent on our destruction.

The baying Palestinian protesters recently shouted that the Temple Mount is for “Muslims and Palestinians only.” Jews and Christians. Throw away your bibles. The Israeli Government has failed you. Through a fear of being disliked, we have adopted an assimilated Jew psychosis, of trying to appear nice or appeasing the goyim and the Muslims, yet we still fail to win friends or influence people. It is we that are being influenced to surrender all too often and too easily.

After the wimpish Israeli government capitulated to threats and removed the security cameras and metal detectors, the Palestinian flag has been affixed to the dome of the Dome of the Rock mosque and holy Muslim worshipers are raining rocks down onto to the head of Jews (known in Islamic circles as “apes and pigs”) praying at the Kotel below. 

If the Israeli government think that this will bring more than a temporary calm, they are right. The tailwind is with the Jew haters and they will ride that deadly wind throughout Israel until the leaders of the Jewish State demonstrate firmness and determination to resist further erosion of our heritage and purpose for being here.

We can feel the claws of our enemy embedded in our flesh. Like wounded animals we are either frozen into inaction or, worse still, make decisions that tighten their deadly lock on our carcass.

We may pretend that Jerusalem is the undivided capital of the Jewish State but there are parts of Jerusalem where the municipality fear to tread, places where obsessive Jew hatred and a desire to see the end of Israel is growing. People are not aware that in this part of our “undivided capital” football cubs play under the auspices of the Palestinian Football Association and their champion team supervises soccer tournaments honoring killers of Israelis without any response from our government against this incitement to terrorism being practiced in Jerusalem. The government has behaved in the most supine manner against this close and immediate threat. They won’t stamp this out because they don’t want to upset anyone.

We have lost not only our courage but our moral compass.

We are in a battle for survival that can only be won by victory over those trying to destroy us bite by bite.

Recently, NGOs came together to form the Israel Victory Caucus. It brings the Congressional Israel Victory Caucus into the Knesset. We hope this will instill backbone into the spine of our government.

The Israeli Government must open up to a serious dose of strategic reality therapy. We are on the path to our own destruction. It is time to go on the offensive with courage and commitment. No other remedy can result in permanent peace.

Germany and Japan surrendered only after being brought to their knees. They have since become leading advocates for peace and mutual recognition. Using this analogy, only when the Palestinians have been brought to the point that they admit defeat, give up on their obsessive Jewish hatred, their feverish martyrdom complex, and an overarching ambition to destroy us, can any form of peace take hold.

They are the ones, not us, who need to make painful concessions.

As Daniel Pipes of Middle East Forum wrote in January, “True peacemaking means finding ways to coerce Palestinian to undergo a change of heart, give up rejectionism, accept Jews, Zionism, and Israel. Defeat compels them to come to terms with their irredentist fantasies and empty the rhetoric of revolution.”

To achieve that, Israel has to extract itself from the psychological and strategic trap it has set for itself – before it is too late.

Barry Shaw is the Senior Associate for Public Diplomacy at the Israel Institute for Strategic Studies.  He is the author of “Fighting Hamas, BDS and Anti-Semitism,” and the 2917 best-seller “1917. From Palestine to the Land of Israel.”

Sunday, 23 July 2017

Metal detectors – Part of a Generational Conflict.

Disturbances at the Temple Mount in Jerusalem and other places broke out over the issue of metal detectors.
“Disturbance” is hardly the right word to describe what has been going on. It is at its heart, a generational battle, a millennial conflict between Islam against Judaism that has continued since the day when Mohammad perpetrated the mass beheadings of 800 Banu Qurayza Jews in 627AD who refused to convert to Islam and were defeated in battle. If you think I am exaggerating, read on...

The recent upheaval was sparked by the terror attack on the holy Temple Mont which led to the introduction of metal detectors to prevent malevolent people from importing deadly weapons onto the holy site. Three Arabs under the influence of the Northern Islamic Movement pretended to be worshipers at the Temple Mont mosques, collected their weapons, and opened fire on Israeli security personnel, killing two Druze officers.

The imposition of metal detectors may be inconvenient but they are hardly a reason for mass riots and individual acts of butchery. These harmful acts were prefaced by deliberate inflammatory incitement from prominent Islamic Wakfs and imams and influential Palestinian and Turkish leaders who promoted false anti-Semitic flames about a supposed change in the status quo of the Temple Mount.

We saw the generational battle played out in our time with the murder of the Druze policemen. The terrorists thought they were killing Jews in a cause they considered legitimate. They were wrong on both counts and their murderous actions lit a spark between Druze and Arabs in Israel. Then came the bloody murder of a Jewish family preparing to greet the holy Sabbath by a 19-year-old Palestinian with a butcher’s knife who broke into their home and slaughtered them.  A Hamas sympathizer, he was inspired by messages of Jew-hating propaganda.

Metal detectors are used without protest outside major mosques in Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Bangladesh, and India. They are standard fare for Jews going to pray at Jerusalem’s Western Wall and at large synagogues. No violent protests occur against these security measures. They are, however, unacceptable for Jew-hating Arabs when used to protect Muslim worshipers wishing to pray in the two mosques built on the ruins of the Jewish Temple, a place that has become accepted as belonging exclusively to Islam. How’s that for a change in the status quo of this ancient holy site?  The UNESCO vote asserted that this shrine, built by Jewish hands, holy to Jews and Christians, is solely Muslim heritage. Unbelievably, several Christian nations supported this lie and, with their vote, approved this falsehood.

Those driving the narrative of a Palestinian state demand that this must be achieved without the need for them to acknowledge the existence of the Jewish State. Again, the basic principle of establishing a Palestinian state without this essential condition, which is touted as irrelevant, is an integral stage of the generational battle initiated by Arab and non-Arab Muslims.

If the protests surrounding metal detectors had not been so deadly it would have been derisive. Anyone with plain common sense can understand that people using violence and murder perpetrated for the removal of metal detectors are using them as a pretext to continue the smuggling of weapons into their mosques for storage and transfer into the hands of terrorists in a holy cause.

By the same token, anyone with common sense can interpret the imposition of a Palestinian state being prepared to accept the rights of a Jewish State to live in peace in the region is a harbinger of an eventual Middle East without Israel.

Should this happen, it will precipitate the end of the Judaeo-Christian world as we know it. Like it or not Israel, the Jewish State, is the last bastion for the free and enlightened world in a generational struggle.

The removal of metal detectors at the Temple Mount is a metaphor for the dismantling of our collective self-defense and an expression of our vulnerability to violent and noisy threats.

Barry Shaw is the Senior Associate for Public Diplomacy at the Israel Institute for Strategic Studies. He is the author of ‘Fighting Hamas, BDS and Anti-Semitism.’

Thursday, 20 July 2017


An investigation following the terrorist shooting on July 14 on the Temple Mount Complex in the Old City of Jerusalem revealed that an accomplice brought weapons into the compound in the early hours of the morning in readiness for the attack.
In this attack two Druze police officers were shot dead by the attackers before the three terrorists were neutralized by security forces on the Temple Mount.

The sensitivity, indeed the volatility, of this location is significant. For too long emotional language has been used by Palestinian politicians and Islamic religious leaders to stoke the flames of violence in the name of this holy place.

While Israel safeguards the flow of Muslim worshipers to the third most holy shrine in Islam and reduces any Jewish presence on Judaism’s most holy site, too many people choose deliberately to make inflammatory statements. Mahmoud Abbas, reneged on his responsibility to induce an atmosphere conducive to peace talks when he spoke about “Jew’s filthy feet desecrating and defiling our Al-Aqsa Mosque.” When leaders like the President of the Palestinian Authority incite with words such as “We will bless every drop of blood that has been spilled for Allah” we can expect no less than deadly terror attacks emanating from the area of the Temple Mount.
What Jewish filthy feet was he referring to? Those of Jews who go up to the Temple Mount with deep respect for being closer to the presence of God? Or the police who constantly have to respond to young Arabs who store rocks and Molotov cocktail bombs in the mosques and then demonstrate in violence against the Jews praying below at the Western Wall.

Now we have evidence that handguns and Carl Gustav rifles are being stored on the Temple Mount by Muslim Arabs looking for trouble.

Israel did the right thing by introducing metal detectors at the entrance of the holy site. One would have thought that caring religious leaders, worshipers, and politicians would have applauded this move that ensures the safety of everyone who goes up to devote their soul to their god. But no. The uproar and incitement ratcheted up another notch. The Palestinian Authority called for a day of rage. Violent protests broke out in Kalandiya, Shuafat and Bethlehem by Palestinian Muslim rioters. Rocks and Molotov cocktails were thrown at security officers by the Lion’s Gate in Jerusalem. Absurdly, Muslim worshipers refused to enter the Temple Mount as a protest against the metal detectors placed there to protect their safety.

Compare that to what Israelis and visitors to Israel have to experience. Metal detectors are a common sight at entrances to official buildings, transport stations, shopping malls. As every traveler knows, metal detectors have become a compulsory component at all airports. They are placed there as a result of the terrorism such as those practiced daily by Palestinians whipped up by the indoctrination and incitement of their political and religious leaders.

We are all burdened by these necessary checks. They keep us safe. But, it seems, there are those, from within whose society the murdering terrorists come, who are prepared to commit further acts of violence in protection of their rights to carry murderous firearms into their mosques and holy places.

Barry Shaw is the Senior Associate for Public Diplomacy at the Israel Institute for Strategic Studies. He is the author of ‘Fighting Hamas, BDS, and Anti-Semitism.’

Saturday, 8 July 2017

Linda Sarsour calls American Muslims not to assimilate and to jihad.

When you hear the words “jihad” and “our top priority is not to assimilate” and this call is made to “please Allah” at a public event by an award-winning Champion of Change in a Western country you know that country is in deep trouble.
That is precisely what happened last week in America, in Chicago, on July 6.

Linda Sarsour has been hiding her agenda behind the cloak of liberal progressivism but, occasionally, her real identity emerges.
At the annual meeting of the Islamic Society of North America she made a speech which should trouble people who truly believe in diversity and, well, liberal politics.

She said to her Islamic audience, “I hope that when we stand up to those who oppress our community struggling against tyrants and rulers that Allah will accept this as a form of jihad not only in the Middle East but here against the fascists, white supremacists and Islamophobes here and reigning in the White House.  Our top priority is to protect and defend our community and not to assimilate and please any other people or authority. Our top priority is to please Allah and only Allah.”

This incendiary speech which insulted the United States president and his Administration was a clear call for jihad and the introduction of Shariah in America. She called upon American Muslims not to assimilate in the name of Allah.

Yet she is perceived as a progressive leader. In fact, the Obama Administration awarded her the title of ‘Champion of Change’ at a ‘Winning the Future of America’ ceremony.’

Sarsour makes obvious her deep hatred of Israel where her family members are sitting in jails after being convicted on terrorism charges. She has rallied on behalf of Rasmeh Odeh, a convicted Palestinian terrorist who killed two Israeli students at a supermarket in 1969. ISNA is an unconvicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Hamas terror financing case as is Brooklyn imam, Siraj Wahaaj, who swerved charges for his involvement in the first World Trade Center bombing and who Sarsour thanked at the start of her speech. Previously she railed against two of her fiercest critics, Brigitte Gabriel and Ayaan Hirsi Ali, when she said, “I wish I could take their vaginas way. They don’t deserve to be women.” 

Amazingly, Linda Sarsour retains her place as a paragon of liberal progressive virtues. I simply don’t get it, but I do expect more of America.

Barry Shaw is the Senior Associate for Public Diplomacy at the Israel Institute for Strategic Studies.  He is also the author of ‘Fighting Hamas, BDS and Anti-Semitism’ and ‘BDS for IDIOTS’ both available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle.

Tuesday, 4 July 2017


Shock waves over the Israeli government decision to fold to ultra-Orthodox pressure by suspending its 2016 policy allowing egalitarian Jewish prayers at a separate section of the Western Wall in Jerusalem are reverberating globally. Israel is in danger of further losing the drifting support from American Reform and Conservative Jews. Disappointed Reform leaders protest that after standing with Israel morally, politically and financially against anti-Israel delegitimization campaigns they now feel delegitimized.
Government figures indicates that Diaspora Jewry contribute 6.5% of Israel’s GDP. Diaspora Jews may rightly ask why they should continue to fund a Jewish State that rejects them. Why should they donate money that goes into the budget of the ultra-Orthodox parties who use their influence to make decisions that negatively impact on them?
Jewish millionaires such as Ike Fisher have appeared on Israeli television saying with are withholding their donations to Israel. 

The issue of Jewish prayers at the Kotel has been poisoned by the rancor instigated by the government decision to prevent egalitarian prayers at Judaism’s most holy site. We need reminding that men and women prayed together at the Kotel less than a hundred years ago. In the spirit of pure prayer there wasn’t even a mechitza (a partition dividing men and women at Jewish prayers).

One of the reasons I initiated the creation of the Knesset Caucus for Anusim and Marranos issues was to force the Israeli Rabbinate to view the return of the hidden Jews, those Jews who, as a result of the Spanish and Portuguese Expulsions and Inquisitions, were forced to keep their Jewish faith a secret to avoid further persecution and now want to return fully to Judaism in Israel, as a blessing and to ease their official conversion process.

Unfortunately, the same rabbinical rigidity that targets a differing branch of Judaism applies to the Secret Jews who could become the next great Aliyah wave for the Jewish State unless they continue to be blocked and denied by the ruling religious cabal in Israel.

Both they and those seeking a way to express their Judaism in Israel are being prevented by the reactionary Israeli Rabbinate and their supportive politicians who hold sway over the Prime Minister.

It is abundantly clear that the Ultra-Orthodox firm grip on government decisions is an indicator of what happens in coalition politics. Non religious Jews have to go abroad if they prefer to have a secular marriage. Non religious Jews have little day how they can be buried. And the ultra-Orthodox conversion grip is preventing thousands of Jews from making Aliyah and a new Jewish life in Israel. 

I recently initiated the new Interfaith Forum IL. This is designed to bring to the fore Israeli-based faith leaders to declare Israel as the model for harmony and peace based on our long record of freedom of religion and the protection of minority rights.

How can I continue to do this following the recent wrong-headed government decision to support an intolerant religious cabal that has, in one stroke, destroyed the aim of what I am trying to create?

This is the shortsighted and damaging face of coalition politics in Israel.

Barry Shaw is the Senior Associate for Public Diplomacy at the Israel Institute for Strategic Studies.  He is the initiator of Interfaith Forum IL and the author of 2017 best-selling book ‘1917. From Palestine to the Land of Israel.’