- Palestinian terrorist murders Israeli-American teen in her home; Palestinian Authority praises attacker
A Palestinian terrorist broke into the home of the Ariel family in the West Bank and stabbed 13-year-old Israeli-American Hallel Yaffa Ariel to death while she was sleeping in her bedroom. The attacker then stabbed a 31-year-old Israeli member of Kiryat Arba’s security team who was responding to the attack. Another member of the security team was able to shoot and kill the attacker. In the hours following the attack, the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) official news agency, WAFA, praised the attacker, calling him a “martyr.” Additionally, PA President Mahmoud Abbas’s political party, Fatah, posted a picture of the terrorist on its Facebook page also declaring him a “martyr.” The attack comes only three days after Abbas advisor Sultan Abu Al-Einein told Palestinians: “Every place you find an Israeli - cut off his head.” The ongoing wave of terror attacks that began last fall has been fueled by incitement from the Palestinian Authority, Fatah, and other elements from across Palestinian society. Palestinian officials have also refused to condemn the attacks. Thus far, at least 39 civilians have been murdered, including four Israelis who were murdered on June 8 when two Palestinian assailants opened fire in Tel Aviv’s Sarona Market.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded to Thursday’s terror attack, asserting: "The horrifying murder of a young girl in her bed underscores the bloodlust and inhumanity of the incitement-driven terrorists that we are facing.” He continued, “I expect the Palestinian leadership to clearly and unequivocally condemn this vicious murder and take immediate action to stop the incitement. Enlightened nations must join in this demand. They must pressure the one who heads the network of incitement that leads to the murder of children in their beds and not the State of Israel, which is working to protect its children and its citizens." The sister of the assailant offered praise for her brother, declaring, "My brother is a martyr, praise be to God. May God avenge the Jews. God willing, my brother will be happy in heaven.” The Israeli victim’s mother, speaking to the mother of the Palestinian terrorist, said, “I raised my child with love and you taught yours to hate.” The attacker posted on his Facebook page praise for other Palestinian terrorists who had committed attacks against Israelis, and last week, he posted, “Death is a privilege.”
Moreover, another terror attack took place on Thursday outside of the central market in the Israeli town of Netanya. The Palestinian attacker from the West Bank town of Tulkarem was shot by an armed Israeli civilian after he stabbed and wounded two people. One of the victims is an ultra-Orthodox man in his 40s and the other is a 62-year-old woman. Netanya’s mayor, Miriam Feirberg-Ikar, condemning the attack, stated: “This is a despicable act by a terrorist whose sole purpose was to harm Israelis wherever they are, out of a desire to disrupt our lives.”
The official announcement of the UK Labour Party’s investigation of anti-Semitism within its ranks was marred Thursday when party leader Jeremy Corbyn made a speech comparing Israel to ISIS, shortly before a Jewish member of parliament was heckled and accused of being part of a media conspiracy.
“Our Jewish friends are no more responsible for the actions of Israel or the Netanyahu government than our Muslim friends are for the self-styled Islamic State,”said Corbyn, who lost a no-confidence vote from Labour Party MPs 172-40 on Tuesday but has refused to resign. He later tried to walk back his statement (which was in his prepared remarks), saying “of course I’m not” comparing the two. A Corbyn spokesman told The Independent that Corbyn meant that “people should not be held responsible for the actions of states or organizations around the world on the basis of religion or ethnicity.”
Corbyn was strongly denounced by Jewish and Israeli leaders. Lord Jonathan Sacks, the former Chief Rabbi, tweeted that the comparison between Israel and ISIS was “demonetization of the highest order, an outrage and unacceptable.”
Israeli opposition leader Isaac Herzog, the head of the Israeli Labor Party, also had strong criticisms for the head of his party’s British affiliate:
“Jeremy Corbyn’s comment at the press conference, which paralleled Israel and Islamic State, makes me wonder whether he, at least, has learned anything at all from the inquiry,” said Rabbi Danny Rich, the leader of the Liberal Judaism denomination.
After Corbyn’s speech, Marc Wadsworth, an activist with Corbyn’s political pressure group Momentum, verbally attacked Jewish MP Ruth Smeeth in front of Corbyn. The Independent reported:
Witnesses said the campaigner accused the Labour MP for Stoke-on-Trent North and Kidsgrove of “colluding” with the right-wing media, after refusing to hand a leaflet to Ms Smeeth and taking down her name.
Ms Smeeth said she was “verbally attacked” and accused of being part of a media conspiracy.
Smeeth then reportedly left the room in tears.
“It is beyond belief that someone could come to the launch of a report on antisemitism in the Labour Party and espouse such vile conspiracy theories about Jewish people, which were ironically highlighted as such in [the] report, while the leader of my own party stood by and did absolutely nothing,” she said in a statement.
People like this have no place in our party or our movement and must be opposed. Until today I had made no public comment about Jeremy’s ability to lead our party, but the fact that he failed to intervene is final proof for me that he is unfit to lead, and that a Labour Party under his stewardship cannot be a safe space for British Jews. I have written to the General Secretary of the Labour Party and the Chair of the Parliamentary Labour Party to formally complain about this morning’s events.
No-one from the Leader’s office has contacted me since the event, which is itself a catastrophic failure of leadership. I call on Jeremy Corbyn to resign immediately and make way for someone with the backbone to confront racism and antisemitism in our party and in the country.
Labour MP Wes Streeting told The Daily Mail that he left the event feeling “disgusted.” “To stand by silently while a Jewish Labour MP is abused by a Momentum activist, accusing her of collaborating with the Telegraph—it was repulsive,” Streeting said. “I don’t think Jeremy Corbyn could have done any more harm this morning that he did if he tried.”
The party’s report said that Labour members “should resist the use of Hitler, Nazi and Holocaust metaphors, distortions and comparisons in debates about Israel-Palestine in particular.” Former London mayor Ken Livingstone was suspended from the Labour Party two months ago after repeatedly claiming that Adolf Hitler was a Zionist.
The report also said that anti-Semitic slurs like “Zio,” which Jewish members of the Oxford University Labour Club were subjected to, is an unacceptable slur. The party’s investigation into anti-Semitism at its Oxford affiliate, scheduled to be published last month, was largely suppressed on the grounds that it would be rolled into the full report, but the scandal was not referenced at all.
For more on Corbyn’s history of anti-Israel activism and association with anti-Semites, read Western Europe’s Most Powerful Anti-Zionist, a profile of Corbyn written by Liam Hoare for the October 2015 issue of The Tower Magazine.
I do not believe that Jeremy Corbyn is an anti-Semite—although, at the very least, the sheer number of anti-Semitic individuals and organizations with whom he is connected calls his moral judgment into question. His associations show him to have been a bloody fool, an ignorant dope, or someone with a malevolent streak and a rotten core. I do not believe that he will ever be Prime Minister, which, in a sense, limits the damage he can do; damage to community relations between Jews and Muslims, the legitimacy of Israel in British public opinion, or to British foreign policy in the Middle East and elsewhere.
Nevertheless, I cannot suppress my fear that Corbyn’s victory represents the final decoupling of Labour from both Israel and the mainstream of the British Jewish community. It may now be a relationship beyond repair. I worry that Corbyn, unable to see anti-Semitism on the Left or the correlation between anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism, unable to even say the word “Israel” at a Labour Friends of Israel meeting, will not take Jewish concerns seriously; concerns not just over the British political climate regarding Israel, but over security for Jewish individuals and institutions. (via TheTower.org)
The California-based multinational networking technology leader Cisco has announced its intent to acquire CloudLock — founded in 2011 by three Israeli military veterans – for $293 million in the first quarter of fiscal year 2017. CloudLock is a privately held cloud security company based in Massachusetts, with a development center in Tel Aviv. The 150-employee company specializes in cloud access security broker technology, which provides visibility and analytics around user behavior and sensitive data in cloud services. CloudLock CEO Gil Zimmermann blogged: “From the day Ron [Zalkind], Tsahy [Shapsa] and I founded CloudLock we had a grand vision – build the cloud security platform that enables people and businesses to accelerate their goals, securely in the cloud. … Our cloud cybersecurity and CASB platform has been adopted by more than 700 customers with tens of millions of users. … We’ve been recognized as one of the 100 fastest growing privately held companies and as one of the fastest growing security companies in the US by Inc. Magazine.” (via Israel21c)