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The Daily TIP: UK’s Labour Party Waters Down Definition of Anti-Semitism, Angering Jewish Community

Posted by Tip Staff - July 06, 2018

UK’s Labour Party Waters Down Definition of Anti-Semitism, Angering Jewish Community
UAE Delegation Reportedly Visited Israel to Learn about F-35 Operations
After Mortar Lands in Golan Demilitarized Zone, Israel Strikes at Syrian Army Position
Middle East's Largest Natural History Museum Open in Tel Aviv


UK’s Labour Party Waters Down Definition of Anti-Semitism, Angering Jewish Community

The British Labour Party under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership has been rocked by yet another anti-Semitism scandal, after the party failed to sign up in full to the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance's (IHRA) working definition of anti-Semitism, The Times of Israel reported Thursday.

Labour's code, which was approved this week by a sub-committee of its National Executive Committee – without consultation of the Jewish community – followed a series of anti-Semitic scandals in the party, including its leader Jeremy Corbyn over his approving comments of the terrorist groups Hamas and Hezbollah.

Labour’s new guidance system lists behaviors regarded as anti-Semitic, however it states, “It is not anti-Semitism to refer to “Zionism” and “Zionists” as part of a discussion about the Israeli state.” The code also leaves out other cornerstones central to IHRA’s definition, including:

• Accusing Jewish people of being more loyal to Israel than their home country

• Claiming that Israel's existence as a state is a racist endeavor

• Requiring higher standards of behavior from Israel than other nations

• Comparing contemporary Israeli policies to those of the Nazis

The Jewish Leadership Council and the Board of Deputies of British Jews said in an angry joint statement that it was "impossible to understand" why Labour had not adopted the IHRA definition in full.

“It is impossible to understand why Labour refuses to align itself with this universal definition. Its actions only dilute the definition and further erode the existing lack of confidence that British Jews have in their sincerity to tackle anti-Semitism within the Labour movement.”



UAE Delegation Reportedly Visited Israel to Learn about F-35 Operations

A military delegation from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) visited Israel recently to learn about the operations of the F-35 stealth fighter, i24News reported Wednesday.

According to unspecified sources, a United States delegation was also present at the time the UAE delegation was there to learn more about Lockheed Martin-made planes. The UAE is considering buying a fleet of F-35s, which are called "game-changers," as ties between moderate Arab states and Israel grow stronger in response to the shared threat from Iran.

Though generally kept quiet, the increasing contacts between Israel and a number of Arab countries continue to grow.

Israel has previously participated in multinational aerial exercises with the UAE. In March of last year, Israeli planes participated in the Iniohos 2017 exercise, which was hosted at Greece’s Andravida Air Base, together with aircraft from the United States, Greece, Italy and the UAE. During the previous August, the Israeli Air Force participated in the American-hosted Red Flag exercises that included aircraft from Pakistan and the UAE, neither of which have formal relations with Israel.

In November 2015, Israel established a diplomatic mission in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the UAE, as part of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).

In May, Israel announced that it had used the F-35 in combat operations for the first time, after Israel struck at a number of Iranian military assets in Syria.



After Mortar Lands in Golan Demilitarized Zone, Israel Strikes at Syrian Army Position

The IDF targeted a Syrian army position following the landing of an errant mortar shell in a demilitarized section of the Golan Heights, The Jerusalem Post reported Friday.

The shell was apparently fired during fighting between the Syrian army and rebel forces in the area. A statement from the IDF said that the shell landed to the east of the border fence between Israel and Syria and that it would enforce the terms of the 1974 disengagement agreement with Syria.

A commander with the forces backing Assad said that the Israeli strike caused no casualties.

In recent weeks, in defiance of a deescalation agreement, Syrian and allied forces have stepped up attacks on the areas in southwestern Syria bordering Jordan and Golan Heights in an effort to dislodge the rebels from that area.

Israel has repeatedly said that it will not allow Iran to establish a foothold in Syria and has conducted numerous air raids over the past year targeting Iranian assets in Syria.

"As for the notion that Assad will push Iran out after achieving victory, the return of his forces to the south means just the opposite," Hanin Ghaddar and Phillip Smyth of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy wrote in an analysis last month. "In a major step toward fulfilling Tehran’s long-term goals, the presence of Syrian forces would serve as a conduit for Hezbollah and other militias to quietly redeploy in the south anytime they like, without having to deal with opposition pockets."



Middle East's Largest Natural History Museum Open in Tel Aviv

Upon entering the new natural history museum in Tel Aviv, visitors are greeted by a vivid re-enactment of the great avian migrations from Africa to Europe through northern Israel’s Hula Valley, complete with stuffed hawks, pelicans and vultures circling around the ceiling of the building’s entrance.

The 100,000-square-foot Noah’s Ark-shaped building, which houses more than 5.5 million specimens of species from around the globe, opened July 2 alongside the Tel Aviv University campus.

As the biggest natural history museum in the Middle East and Israel’s national center for biodiversity studies, the Steinhardt Museum of Natural History highlights the country’s ecological diversity at the crossroads of the three continents.

The main goal of the museum, according the curators, is to increase public awareness about the natural world and environment on a local and global scale.

Israel attracts millions of visitors from around the world every year who are eager to discover the country’s cultural and religious artifacts. The museum, expected to host 150,000 visitors per year, will now offer visitors to the Holy Land an in-depth look at the region’s unique natural history, both ancient and modern.

“The commitment and partnership of the Israeli Government and donors to the Museum, headed by Michael Steinhardt, led to the establishment of a unique, groundbreaking Museum that will become an important cultural attraction for thousands of families, school children, nature lovers, tourists and scientists from around the world,” said Tamar Dayan, a professor of mammalogy at Tel Aviv University and the chair of the museum.

(via Israel21c)


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