Daily TIP

The Daily TIP: Airbnb to Boycott Israel, Will No Longer Provide Listings in West Bank, Sparking Outrage

Posted by Tip Staff - November 21, 2018

Airbnb to Boycott Israel, Will No Longer Provide Listings in West Bank
Nuclear Experts: IAEA Must Ensure That Iran's Weapons Program is Ended in "Permanent" Manner
Biblically-Mentioned Weight from First Temple Period Discovered in Jerusalem
Author Wins Dutch Award for Cookbook Celebrating Tel Aviv's Cuisine

Airbnb to Boycott Israel, Will No Longer Provide Listings in West Bank

Airbnb, the home rental site, announced on Monday that it would change its policy regarding home listings in what it calls occupied territories, singling out the West Bank, The Jerusalem Post reported. In response, Israeli officials said they were looking at restricting Airbnb services in the Jewish State and urged affected hosts to file lawsuits under Israel’s anti-boycott law.

Airbnb said on its website that “many in the global community have stated that companies should not be doing business here (in the occupied territories) because they believe companies should not profit on lands where people have been displaced.”

Michael Oren, a former Israeli ambassador to the United States, deemed Airbnb’s policy "the very definition of anti-Semitism." Oren observed that “Airbnb blacklists Jewish apartments in Judea and Samaria – not Palestinian apartments, not apartments in Turkish occupied Cyprus, not in Moroccan occupied Sahara, not in Tibet or the Crimea.”

“No one should use its services,” Oren added.

The Israeli Tourism Ministry responded to the move by announcing it would formulate an immediate retaliatory plan against the “discriminatory” action to "limit the company's activities" in Israel. Officials said they would also consult with the U.S. government over the decision, based on anti-boycotts legislation that many U.S. states enforce.

PLO chief negotiator Saeb Erekat welcomed the decision by Airbnb but said the company did not go far enough. “We reiterate our call upon the UN Human Rights Council to release the database of companies profiting from the Israeli colonial occupation. Israeli settlements are not just an obstacle to peace but defy the very definition of peace,” Erekat said.

However, the Palestinian leadership has defied efforts by the Trump administration to formulate a yet unreleased peace plan. Last month, PA chairman, Mahmoud Abbas, again said the plan “will not pass and the fate of the land of Palestine will be decided by the Palestinian people.” He accused the U.S. of “conspiracy” in putting its peace plan together, Israel of plotting to implement, and Hamas of working to disrupt the creation of a Palestinian state.

Nuclear Experts: IAEA Must Ensure That Iran's Weapons Program is Ended in "Permanent" Manner

The Institute for Science and International Security published a paper Tuesday containing new details about Iran's nuclear weapons program and demanding that the International Atomic Energy Agency ensure that Iran's nuclear weapons program is "ended in an irretrievable permanent manner."

The latest report — authored by David Albright, a former weapons inspector and president of the institute; Olli Heinonen, former deputy director general of the IAEA; and Andrea Stricker, a senior policy analyst at the institute — follows up on previous reports based on information contained in the Iranian nuclear archive recovered by Israel earlier this year.

According to the latest report, Iranian documents show that Iran had specific plans to build 5 ten-kiloton nuclear devices by 2003. The plans from the archive show that Iran's planning for these weapons was very detailed, including expected costs and a timetable.

However, Iran did not develop the weapons by 2003 and reoriented its program. Iran "had put in place the infrastructure for a comprehensive nuclear weapons program capable of one day building far more, if required," the paper reported.

Though Israel had provided the files it recovered from the archive to the IAEA, the agency has not acted on the new information. In fact, the paper pointed out that Israel publicly revealed its discovery of the Iranian nuclear archive and warehouse only "after briefing the IAEA and it failed to act."

"It is not only the Secretariat, but the IAEA Board of Governors, which has not lived up to its task," Albright, Heinonen, and Stricker write in their conclusion. "They have created a double nonproliferation standard which, unless remedied, will decrease the chance of ensuring Iran does not build nuclear weapons and will serve as a playbook for future proliferators."

Biblically-Mentioned Weight from First Temple Period Discovered in Jerusalem

A rare weight, bearing an inscription mentioned in the bible, was discovered in an excavation near the Western Wall in Jerusalem, The Times of Israel reported Wednesday.

The tiny stone has the word beka, a weight mentioned in the bible — both in Genesis in describing the jewelry given to Rebecca and in Exodus describing the weight of the coins Jews were required to donate for the census — inscribed on it.

For some reason, the inscription of "beka" is written in "mirror writing." The orientations of the letters and the word are backward.

“Apparently, the seal craftsman got confused when he engraved the inscription on the weight and mistakenly used mirror script as he was used to doing. From this mistake we can learn about the general rule: the artists who engraved weights during the First Temple period were the same artists who specialized in creating seals,” Archaeologist Eli Shukron of the Israel Antiquities Authority explained. The beka was found in dirt that had been excavated from under Robinson's Arch in 2013.

The census tax described in the bible is supposed to be a silver half-shekel coin which weighs a beka.

“This is a word that is used both inside and outside of the Bible. You don’t need to ask too many questions, just open the Bible and see it. It’s very simple. You can see beka written in the Bible and what it was used for, and there you have it,” Shukron said, explaining the significance of the location where the beka was found.

“The Bible, the artifact found close to Solomon’s Temple, north of the City of David, the Temple foundations – everything is connected,” he added.

“This three-thousand-year-old Beka weight, inscribed with ancient Hebrew was likely used in the First Temple, anchoring once again, the deep historical connection of the Jewish People to Jerusalem,” Doron Spielman, Vice President of the City of David Foundation, which funded the excavation, said.

Despite the mounting archaeological evidence of the Jewish presence in Jerusalem, UNESCO, the United Nations' cultural and scientific organization, consistently adopts resolutions denying this historical connection.

Author Wins Dutch Award for Cookbook Celebrating Tel Aviv's Cuisine

Dutch author Jigal Krant won the Dutch Booksellers Federation’s 2018 Golden Cookbook Award (Het Gouden Kookboek) for his TLV: Recipes and Stories from Tel Aviv, a paean to Israeli cuisine.

At the Amsterdam ceremony earlier this month, jury chairwoman Janny van der Heijden said Krant’s book “teaches, pleases and entertains. It’s a cookbook, good reading material and a travel guide.”

TLV has been described as “a culinary declaration of love by Jigal Krant to his second home, Tel Aviv, translated to more than 100 recipes and stories.”

Krant writes: “Tel Aviv is a progressive city in a conservative region. A melting pot where many cuisines fuse. In an area where religious rules often determines what end up on the table, Tel Aviv has an innovative and free cuisine with no rules.”

The dishes in his cookbook include, for example, purple tabbouleh, fish shawarma, pita ratatouille, beetroot carpaccio, grilled avocado and freekeh risotto.

Here’s one of his videos, showing how to make malabi as presented in the book. Krant speaks in Dutch, but the images say it all.

(via Israel21c)

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