Is Generation Woke responsible for antisemitism? – opinion

Is Generation Woke responsible for antisemitism? – opinion

Who are the social justice warriors, and how do Jewish students fight against campus antisemitism at universities.

 

University campuses are populated by tech-savvy (some would say tech-dependent) students who style themselves as the conscience of a new generation. These social justice warriors, also known as Generation Woke, champion countless human rights movements across the world. Yet, too often, radical contingents of these warriors have also exploited social media platforms to promote a variant of antisemitism that, despite its 21st-century appearance, is simply a repackaged version of the world’s oldest hate, and is at odds with any rational understanding of social justice.

It would be easy to place the blame for their antisemitism squarely at the feet of the students themselves. Yet, it is equally vital to examine the education system and how it has contributed to this troubling state of affairs.

Universities provide a platform for educators and administrators to significantly influence each generation’s thoughts and political views. Perhaps no better example encapsulates how education has been weaponized to promote antisemitism than the Arab and Muslim Ethnicities and Diasporas Studies department (AMED) at San Francisco State University (SFSU).

In 2021, AMED was allowed by SFSU to host an online event with Leila Khaled, a Palestinian-Arab terrorist who participated in two airplane hijackings and attempted to detonate a hand grenade during the second one. Khaled participated in these heinous crimes as a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), a US-designated terror organization committed to genocide against the Jewish people. Even today, she still encourages violence in the name of Palestinian-Arab interests. Although Jewish students at SFSU expressed concern and opposition to platforming a terrorist, the university’s administration defended the event, as did several student groups. The event was shut down only after the video hosting company refused to host it due to its violation of the company’s terms of service.

Who is to blame for the glorification of terror in the case of the AMED incident? Is it Generation Woke for neglecting to use their social justice voices to stand up for one of the most targeted minority populations on campus, Jewish students? Or is it the biased and agenda-driven administrations who are encouraging antisemitism to continue? There should be no room for the promotion of discrimination, much less of terrorists, in an institute of higher education.

The influence of terrorist organizations on college campuses is real and can be seen among groups like Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP), whose ideology closely mirrors that of the PFLP. There are multiple records of SJP chapters hosting PFLP members at events, with the encouragement of professors and administrators, and countless more social media posts by SJP demonstrating their support for terror.

Yes, Generation Woke is passionate and generally supports human rights, but they too often ignore human rights when it comes to terrorism directed at Jews. It would be beneficial to examine how groups like SJP are funded – to understand why they do what they do – but there is a fundamental lack of transparency on the part of SJP and its donors. If, theoretically, the PFLP is funding SJP, it is directly participating in promoting discrimination and violence against Jews on US campuses.

In the US, most students have but a cursory understanding of the conflict between Israel and Palestinian Arabs. The combination of magnified voices on social media and being a minority among minorities leaves many Jewish students with a legitimate fear for their safety on many American campuses. Asking American Jewish students to convert the apprehension they are feeling on campus to inspiration is easier said than done, but it is necessary to ensure a safe environment where true education can flourish.

For better or worse, much of the burden to remedy the hostile campus climate falls on the Jewish students in Generation Woke correctly recognizing the progressiveness of Zionism and the State of Israel. By speaking the language of young and idealistic student activists, they can begin improving the situation on the ground.

So, to the Zionist Jews of Generation Woke, we challenge you: call out the next false post a peer uploads on social media about Jewish people and Israel; ask where the antisemites get their funding and organizational assistance, and stand up to biased professors on campus and reach out to organizations like Zachor Legal Institute and Zachor on Campus when you need help for the backlash you may receive. It will not be easy, but it would do wonders for Jewish students who have been silenced for too long. There are many resources available to Jewish students in their fight against campus antisemitism, and it is progressive Jewish students who must wear their identities proudly and recruit non-Jewish students in this true social justice movement, to ensure this is the last generation that has to fight for basic rights on campus.

Lizzy McNeill, who made Aliyah in 2018 and served in the IDF, is the Director of Zachor on Campus. Marc Greendorfer is the President of Zachor Legal Institute.

Original JPost Article.

EXCLUSIVE: Facebook is funding and working closely with pro-Palestine charity that is linked to alleged terror groups that revere convicted killers and had a ‘Holocaust denier’ as a guest speaker

  • Meta, Facebook’s parent company, provides funding and works closely with pro-Palestine charity 7amleh
  • The partnership is one of many launched by Meta with the aim of ‘keeping harmful content off our platforms and helping to prevent risk offline’ 
  • The nonprofit is also a member of Twitter’s Trust and Safety Council, and is a part of Twitter’s ‘Human and Digital Rights Protection group’ 
  • A new report claims that 7amleh has links to alleged terror organizations 
  • Pro-Israel think tank the Zachor Legal Institute claims 7amleh has lionized convicted terrorists and had an alleged holocaust denier as a guest speaker
  • Michigan Democrat Representative Rashida Tlaib also spoke at 7amleh’s annual online conference last month on Palestinian online activism 
  • Zachor founder Marc Greendorfer told DailyMail.com that Facebook and Twitter failed in their due diligence by including 7amleh in their advisory groups
  • A spokesperson for 7amleh said the report was no different to the many ‘smear campaigns from extremist, far-right and anti-Palestinian organizations’ 

Facebook ‘trusted partner’ charity and member of Twitter‘s ‘Trust and Safety Council’ has links to alleged terror organizations, a new report claims.

Meta, Facebook’s parent company, provides funding and works closely with pro-Palestine charity 7amleh.

The partnership is one of many launched by Meta with the aim of ‘keeping harmful content off our platforms and helping to prevent risk offline’, and allows 7amleh to have a say in Facebook’s policies.

But pro-Israel think tank the Zachor Legal Institute claims in a new report that 7amleh has ties with alleged terrorist groups and even shared staff with them, has lionized convicted terrorists, and had an alleged holocaust denier as a guest speaker at its conference.

‘A terror-supporting, terror-linked NGO, which is tasked with influencing Meta’s algorithm, policies and community guidelines (and receives funding to that end), is actively trying to impact Meta in a way that negatively affects Jews,’ the report says.

‘7amleh has ties to Palestinian terrorist groups and has expressed support for terrorism, which makes its ‘Trusted Partner’ status with Meta all the more troubling.’

A spokesperson for 7amleh told DailyMail.com the report was no different to the many ‘smear campaigns from extremist, far-right and anti-Palestinian organizations’ that it faces and that it will continue working for ‘a fair, safe and just digital space’

The Israel-based nonprofit, whose full name is the Arab Center for the Advancement of Social Media, says it promotes digital and human rights of Palestinians.

Israel charity data from Gidestar.org says it has 10 staff and an annual turnover of almost $1million.

Zachor’s report highlights the center’s alleged ties to terrorists – including the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), designated a ‘foreign terrorist organization’ by the US State Department in 1997.

Last year the Israeli government accused Palestinian nonprofit Al-Haq of operating as an ‘arm’ for the PFLP and designated it as a terror group.

One Al-Haq worker, Ahmad Qadi, also works as 7amleh’s Monitoring and Documentation Officer, according to his LinkedIn page.

7amleh’s Local Advocacy Manager Cathrine Abuamsha was a lawyer for Al-Haq until January 2022, according to her LinkedIn.

Earlier this year UN human rights experts criticized Israel’s labeling of Al-Haq and five other charities as terrorist organizations, saying the government failed to provide ‘any public concrete and credible evidence,’ for its accusations.

Zachor’s report claims that 7amleh and its staff have made statements ‘glorifying’ or ‘whitewashing’ terrorists.

Its report says 7amleh co-founder Nadim Nashif called the convicted PFLP airplane hijacker Leila Khaled a ‘resistance icon’.

In 2020 7amleh called PFLP leader Ghassan Kanafani a ‘distinguished Palestinian personality’.

7amleh advisory board member Marwa Fatafta ‘wrote an article lionizing PFLP terrorist Basel al-Araj’ as an ‘intellectual activist’ who was killed in a firefight with Israeli forces, the Zachor report said.

PFLP recruits have been held responsible for the murder of 26 people at Lod Airport in Israel in 1972, a suicide bombing in a crowded Tel Aviv market in 2004, the killing of five members of a family including a 3-month-old baby in 2011, and a 17-year-old killed by their roadside bomb in 2019.

A 7amleh social media campaign highlighted in the Zachor report pushed for solidarity with Palestinian prisoners.

Among those it asked followers to support were senior Hamas leader Mohammad Jamal Natsheh, Ayman Kurd who was jailed for allegedly stabbing two police officers in Jerusalem in 2016, and Marah Bakir, who stabbed a border officer in Jerusalem in 2015.

Michigan Democrat Representative Rashida Tlaib spoke at 7amleh’s annual online conference last month on Palestinian online activism and digital rights.

The conference featured a presentation from an alleged ‘holocaust denier’ Muna Hawwa.

Hawwa, a Palestinian Al Jazeera presenter, was suspended by the TV channel in 2019 over a video she helped create that referred to the death of six million Jews at the hands of the Nazis as ‘a narrative endorsed by the Zionist movement’.

The video, meant to be an informative segment about the holocaust, called Israel ‘the greatest beneficiary from the Holocaust’ and reportedly claimed that World War II remembrance focuses on Jews because the 1940s saw ‘Jewish groups possessing financial resources, media institutions, research centers and academic institutions that were able to highlight the Jewish victims more so [than others].’

Another conference speaker, Diana Alzeer, is a member of Al-Haq, the charity controversially designated by Israel as a terrorist organization.

Zachor’s report sought to raise alarm over 7amleh’s position as a ‘trusted partner’ with Facebook parent Meta, claiming that the charity is an insidious or biased influence on the social media site’s policies.

Meta did not respond to a request for comment.

In its 2021 annual report, 7amleh says it has ‘contribute[d] to the development and evaluation of Facebook policies. This included policies about peaceful protests, focusing on how violence at public protests is moderated.’

The Zachor report said 7amleh also launched an online campaign to influence how Facebook policies deal with antisemitism.

The nonprofit is also a member of Twitter’s Trust and Safety Council, and is a part of Twitter’s ‘Human and Digital Rights Protection group’.

‘The Human and Digital Rights Protection group engages Twitter on priority challenges and policy issues in the realm of human rights, free expression, civil liberties, and defending the digital rights of people on Twitter,’ the social media site says.

Zachor founder and president Marc Greendorfer told DailyMail.com that he believes Facebook and Twitter failed in their due diligence by including 7amleh in their advisory groups.

‘They are essentially whitewashing terrorism and getting funded by Meta to promote their work and to promote the propaganda that they put out,’ he claimed.

Greendorfer said he was concerned that such heavily partisan groups could have a biased effect on moderators ‘fact-checking’ content on social media.

‘Meta and other social media platforms use these groups to fact check. So let’s say that there’s a terrorist attack in Israel and a number of civilians are killed, and there’s posts on Facebook about that.

‘These groups like 7amleh would be allowed to fact-check and essentially spin the reports and the posts in a way favorable to their patrons.

‘Selective news publication will accelerate when these organizations are allowed to act as fact checkers.’

The Zachor Legal Institute describes itself as a ‘think tank and legal advocacy organization’. It has helped launched lawsuits in the US to fight anti-semitism and the ‘boycott, divestment and sanctions’ movement, a pro-Palestine campaign that targets the country’s business interests around the world.

7amleh told DailyMail.com it is ‘a non-profit organization that works to monitor and document digital rights violations against Palestinians, carried out by various perpetrators online.’

‘Like many Palestinian and Israeli human rights organizations, we are targeted by smear campaigns from extremist, far-right and anti-Palestinian organizations who work systematically to silence Palestinian voices and prevent Palestinians from having the right to freedom of expression,’ director Nadim Nashif said.

‘This latest report is no different, and relies on flimsy and discredited information. Therefore, 7amleh will continue to work with its allies and partners for a fair, safe and just digital space.

‘For a long time, our research has shown that social media companies censor Palestinian content through their biased content moderation policies. This has led to the silencing of Palestinian content, and prevented Palestinians from documenting the human rights violations that they are exposed to.

‘This came as a result of systematic extreme right-wing Israeli efforts to silence Palestinians in online spaces, and as a continuation of coordinated campaigns to dehumanize Palestinians and shrink spaces for freedom of expression.

‘Biased social media content moderation policies allow extreme incitement and hate speech from Israelis to stay online, which leads to real-world harm and increases the violence against the Palestinian community, putting Palestinian lives at risk.

‘Therefore, our work focuses on protecting Palestinian digital rights, in particular the right to freedom of speech on online platforms, which is often denied to Palestinians who speak up about the human rights violations they face in their daily lives under Israeli occupation.’

Click here to view article in Daily Mail.

Jews are the Sole Surviving Indigenous Population in the Land of Israel

By Marc Greendorfer

The allegation that Western countries are rife with systemic discrimination appears in virtually every discussion of race and ethnicity, especially in the United States.  While there is no question that there has been discrimination in the United States, the days of it being a consequence of institutionalization by government are in the distant past.  There is but one exception today: the indoctrination of students by activists who are supported by powerful teachers’ unions and administrators.

In particular, there is a move to teach students an ethnic studies curriculum designed by the same people who promote the boycott, divest, and sanction movement.  This credo wrongfully (and unlawfully) alleges that Jews are white supremacists who have colonized distant lands in violation of the rights of indigenous populations.

I am the son of a Holocaust survivor, and most of my mother’s family was slaughtered in Europe.  Our presence in Europe was the direct result of thousands of years of discrimination and ethnic cleansing by, among others, European and Arab invaders who conquered and occupied our homeland of the land of Israel.  The idea that we are white supremacists is the ultimate expression of blaming the victim and ignoring documented history.

More important, though, is the damage done to Jews by antisemitic activists who have successfully brainwashed a significant swath of America that Jews are equivalent to Nazis and Klansmen.  Worse, progressive activists in populous states like California are now indoctrinating young minds with Marxist ideology, teaching students that Jews are a monolithic people who have stolen land from an indigenous population in the Middle East.  These impossibly illogical claims even circulate among members of Congress.

I recently finished a law review article, to be published in a peer-reviewed journal in the near future, titled “The True History and Legal Meaning of Colonialism in the Holy Land: The 2042 B.C.E. Project,” as a counterpoint to the disinformation and abject historical revisionism being pushed on students by progressive activists.   This article explores the history of Jews and Judaism in the Middle East and provides a detailed examination of how Jews are the sole surviving indigenous population in the land of Israel.  In researching this article, I was surprised to discover the extensive history of cultural appropriation of Jews, primarily by Muslims but also by other foreign populations.

For example, I learned that when Mohamed founded Islam, hundreds of years after the destruction of the Second Temple in Jerusalem, he chose the Jewish city of Yathrib to start his religion.

Yathrib, a historic Jewish city that was home to Jews who were displaced from the land of Israel during the Roman invasions, was chosen specifically because of its large and longstanding Jewish population.  Today, Yathrib is called Medina in Saudi Arabia.

From Yathrib, Mohamed and his forces began an imperialist campaign to conquer other Jewish communities and sites, ultimately resulting in the occupation of Jerusalem and the desecration and appropriation of the most holy of Jewish sites and the genocide of Jewish populations across the region.  In fact, the practice of setting up garrison settlements in foreign lands (Amsar), a classic example of colonialism, became common and was instrumental in the rapid spread of Islam.  As Islam matured in the years following the death of Mohamed, it became a more distinctly colonial system, uprooting the traditional social and political structure of numerous small, sovereign tribes and replacing it with a centralized structure where the caliph, and his affiliates, were the primary source of governance and control.

Will students who are forced to learn ethnic studies be taught of this history?  As it stands now, not only will students not be taught about the history of the Jewish people and our homeland, but they will also, instead, be taught a series of lies that strip Jews of our history and rights and deem the occupiers (Palestinian Arabs) as the occupied.  If the proposed ethnic studies programs are implemented, an entire generation of young people will be taught that Jews are modern-day Nazis, and Jewish students will be forced to repeat propaganda that undermines their entire ethnicity.

So not only will Jews have been subjected to ethnic cleansing in their homeland, but we will also have our ethnic identity erased.  For those who say “there should be a law against that,” there is: the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.  History shows that Jews are the indigenous people of the land of Israel, and the current attempt to deny us our inherent rights is nothing less than the continuation of the ethnic cleansing campaign that originated with the Babylonians and continues today with Palestinian Arabs and their supporters.

That positive treatment of the historic ethnic cleansing of Jews, and overt incitement to continue it today, will now be part of the curriculum for many American students is an even greater crime.

Original Article Published in American Thinker.

 

Nonprofit Looks to Fight Antisemitism on Campus

Lizzy McNeill graduated from Temple University in 2017 and, during her time there, she felt “a lot of hostility toward Israel-supporting students” from her peers, she said.

She sensed that she couldn’t use the word Zionist or wear her Israel Defense Forces patch on her backpack without hearing antisemitic comments. Pro-Palestine activists would outright tell her that she didn’t deserve an opinion due to her “white privilege.”

The experience motivated McNeill, whose mother is Jewish, to make aliyah and join the IDF. After two years of service, she’s back in the United States for at least part of the year, and she’s trying to get her old school to work with her on issues of antisemitism on campus.

McNeill is a project manager for the nonprofit Zachor Legal Institute, a Delaware-based organization serving as a legal resource for Jewish students dealing with such issues. The Temple alum is attempting to develop relationships with Jewish leaders and students on Temple’s campus and other area campuses.

But so far, the attempt is just that. The institute has worked with students at other schools, but not yet in the Philadelphia region.

“We’re continuing to reach out to students,” McNeill said. “We’re always a resource. We’re always available.”

Campus antisemitism is a prominent issue. In October, the Anti-Defamation League and Hillel International released a report that said one in three Jewish college students experienced antisemitism in the past year.

And in January, a story broke about a Temple rower whose roommate allegedly sent her a screenshot of a Snapchat saying, “I hate Jews.” The student, Sasha Westrick, transferred from Temple after finding the university’s response, of changing her room and finding her roommate guilty, to be both slow and insubstantial. The school also did not reveal the roommate’s punishment to Westrick and her mother.

McNeill spoke with Westrick’s mother after the incident, and it motivated her to try and work with her old school.

“It’s the kind of thing that happened when I was there,” she said. “We would love to work with Temple. That’s the goal. I’m sure this isn’t one girl feeling one thing.”

Founded and operated by Montana-based lawyer Marc Greendorfer, the institute is “a legal think tank and advocacy organization” “taking the lead in the legal battle against antisemitism and the de-legitimization of Israel, including ‘Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions,’” according to its website.

McNeill said the organization has worked with students at University of California, Los Angeles, University of Southern California and Duke University, among other schools.

One Duke student, now an intern with Zachor, had trouble establishing a pro-Israel group on campus this past school year. The university let him establish a group that “doesn’t have any rights on campus,” as McNeill explained it.

A registered student organization at Duke, according to Greendorfer, can use privileges like meeting in university buildings. This student’s group couldn’t do that.

“Sometimes a student will see something and won’t know what to do,” McNeill said.

That’s where Zachor comes in. McNeill is available to help like a friend would be: via text, phone call and email at any time.

She is the institute’s only full-time employee; even Greendorfer works a day job as a lawyer and calls the nonprofit work his passion.

Earlier in April, McNeill talked to a student whose mezuzah kept getting ripped down. A police officer told him to just take it off his door. But the student found that to be a violation of his religious freedom. So, he talked to McNeill, who told him to post a message on his door explaining what a mezuzah is.

“Even if we’re just an ear for the students, I think that’s something,” the Temple alum said.
But Zachor can also be more than just an ear, according to Greendorfer. His legal expertise can help inform them of their rights, he said.

“A lot of the students don’t know their rights; they don’t know where to go; they don’t realize that what they’re experiencing is a violation of anti-discrimination law,” the lawyer added. “We’re willing to walk through things, take our time and inform you.”

Zachor gets its funding from pro-Israel foundations and individuals, according to Greendorfer, and it has enough money to offer its services for free. The lawyer and project manager are hoping that Jewish students at the Philly schools they’ve contacted, like the University of Pennsylvania and Drexel University in addition to Temple, will soon take it up on the offer.

“We do see a lot of issues there. But we’re not getting a response,” Greendorfer said. “It’s up to their leaders, the Jewish educators on campus to also be responsive and proactive in this fight against antisemitism and BDS.”

View Original Article in Jewish Exponent

UC Admission Mandate is Not Just Biased Against Jews, it’s Also Unconstitutional

As horrible as discrimination is, it is even worse when it is mandated by the government, which is exactly what a proposal by the University of California (UC) currently under consideration by the UC Academic Senate would result in if adopted.

The University of California is considering a proposal that would have the effect of not only requiring students to be indoctrinated in bias but also subjecting those students to a program that delegitimizes their very existence.  The proposal is one that on its face is innocuous, but it is designed to ensure that one group that has a long track record of promoting antisemitism may be in charge of creating and helping to implement a course in ethnic studies that will become a requirement for admission to California’s flagship university system (one that is paid for by California taxpayers).

While forcing students to learn to hate themselves is reprehensible as a matter of policy, we believe it is also a violation of the First Amendment.

Many families in California expect that their children will have an opportunity to attend a UC campus and, in fact, admission to a UC campus is a legal right for each student in the top 9% of their class.  The proposed new admissions requirement for the University of California, however, will require that each prospective UC student complete a high school ethnic studies course that will likely be in line with a model curriculum that is openly antisemitic. As a result, California high schools are expected to require completion of this curriculum, including private Jewish schools.

This will force parents to make a choice for their children: give up the right to attend the University of California or be subjected to a program of delegitimization and hate so they can realize the benefits of the UC system.

Under a legal theory known as the unconstitutional conditions doctrine, this kind of choice is patently unconstitutional.

An unconstitutional condition exists where “government offers a benefit on condition that the recipient perform or forego an activity that a preferred constitutional right normally protects from government interference.”

All three basic elements of this doctrine are met by UC’s ethnic studies proposal:

First, there must be someone or something (such as a governmental entity, like a state, or a corporate entity) with rights protected by the Constitution. Second, the government has to choose to provide a benefit where it is not otherwise required to do so.  Finally, the government must condition the provision of the benefit on the rightsholder waiving its right.

In the case of the ethnic studies proposal, it’s clear that the unconstitutional condition is most applicable to situations where Jewish private schools, particularly those that include instruction on ethnic and religious identity and pride, will be forced to include teaching that is dictated or guided by a group promoting antisemitism.

Many parents choose private schools specifically to ensure that their children have a positive sense of identity and knowledge of their backgrounds, as well as the best education in traditional topics, with the additional goal of qualifying for admission to the University of California system. The ethnic studies proposal is a regulation that will impact hardest ethnic and religious minority groups, especially those with a lower income, as the University of California system often represents the only affordable option for quality higher education. It would be difficult to find a more pernicious abuse of governmental power.

The imposition of unconstitutional conditions by government, especially on a critical right such as higher education, is a fundamental attack on the freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution.

The proposed ethnic studies requirement is a textbook example of an unconstitutional condition. Parents hold the right to provide an education for their children (and private schools hold the right to determine what they teach), the government benefit is taxpayer funded higher education available to all state residents (including a guarantee of admission for the top 9% of students) and the government will condition the government benefit on the students being indoctrinated in materials that strike at the heart of their identities, in violation of the First Amendment’s guarantees with regard to expression and religion.

The ethnic studies proposal is meant to remedy what some see as a system that has institutionalized discrimination. There are many ways to combat such discrimination, but state-mandated discrimination must not be one of them. 


Marc Greendorfer is the President and co-founder of Zachor Legal Institute, a non-profit civil rights advocacy organization combating discrimination.

Original Article in Jewish Journal

Anti-Israel organization using AIPAC acronym to trick donors

Let’s talk about AIPAC.

No, not the AIPAC that you probably know, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, but rather: Association for Investment in Popular Action Committees.

Never heard of them?

Now is the time to learn about the nefarious things they are doing to trick Americans into supporting designated terror organizations such as Hamas.

First, the acronym AIPAC. Already somewhat confusing, as if AIPAC comes soliciting donations, you are thinking of a pro-Israel organization, not a group focused on funding terrorists. I am guessing that their choice of a name, and the subsequent acronym, is not coincidental.

All registered nonprofits, in order to be able to accept and track tax-free contributions, are assigned an Employer Identifier Number (EIN) by the IRS. Recent research found that the fake AIPAC, the anti-Israel nonprofit organization, has apparently been sharing their EIN with a number of other organizations. This apparent deception has led to the possible misleading of donors who are unaware of the final destination of their funds, which could potentially be received by organizations with ties to terror groups.

The fake AIPAC’s treasurer, Paul Larudee is connected to this web of organizations that include: No Tax Dollars to Israel, Global March to Jerusalem North American (GMJ), The Nakba Tour, Syria Solidarity Movement, The One State Assembly, the International Solidarity Movement of Northern California, Free Palestine Movement, Palestinian Children’s Welfare Fund (PCWF), Arab Women’s Progressive League, and Solidarity Movement for Free Palestine.

Larudee is an open supporter of Hamas – a fact that has been acknowledged by senior members of the US-designated terror group. In an expression of gratitude to Larudee for his role and actions, he was invited to meet personally with Hamas leader in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh, an individual classified by the US Department of State as a designated global terrorist. While Larudee himself has publicly renounced violence, he has acknowledged that some of the groups for which the fake AIPAC serves as a benefactor have not done the same. When one facilitates the funding of groups that have as their primary purpose the support of terror organizations, the money speaks louder than the faint whispers of disapproval.

In the past, the United States has successfully prosecuted those involved in providing support to Islamic terror groups, as occurred in the Holy Land Foundation prosecution where a US-based charity and its leaders provided financial and other support to Hamas. In that prosecution, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a group providing support for the same type of anti-Israel activism Larudee engages in, was named by the US government as an unindicted co-conspirator in providing terror funding to Hamas. While Larudee was not involved in the Holy Land case, his support of Hamas raises troubling legal issues.

While the question of Larudee’s actions constituting material support for designated terror organizations remains one to be considered by federal law enforcement, there appears to be no question that Larudee’s deceptive use of the AIPAC name and his apparent misuse of EIN numbers have succeeded in confusing and possibly misleading nonprofit donors as to the purpose of their donations. That is clearly something that the Internal Revenue Service should investigate.
Jerusalem Post Article: https://www.jpost.com/international/anti-israel-organization-using-aipac-acronym-to-trick-donors-674347

Pro-BDS group blocks Israeli ship from unloading in Oakland

 Hundreds of anti-Israel protesters prevented the unloading of an Israeli container ship from Asia at the Port of Oakland, Calif., on Friday, with the cooperation of the local longshoremen’s union, which refused to unload the vessel.

The protest was sponsored and organized by the Arab Resource and Organizing Center (AROC), a pro-Palestinian BDS group operating in the Bay Area.

In a Sunday Facebook post, the group, which claimed “thousands” streamed to the protest throughout Friday, praised International Longshore and Warehouse Union (“ILWU”) Local 10, which it said had “honored the six simultaneous community pickets during both the morning and evening shifts, and did not work the ship.”

“Knowing that it could break neither our blockade nor the workers’ demonstration of solidarity, in a dramatic move, community members watched as the Israeli apartheid-profiteering ship left the port of Oakland! #BlockTheBoat #BDS,” said AROC.

The Zachor Legal Institute, which combats BDS and anti-Semitic organizations in the United States, told JNS that by refusing to unload a ship with perceived Jewish ownership, the members of International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 10 had engaged in an “unlawful secondary boycott in violation of longstanding National Labor Relations Act rules.”

“Local 10 has a history of these types of violations, and members of the union have openly supported the terror-backed groups promoting the boycotts,” said Zachor.

In a May 16 letter to the president of Local 10, Zachor said the boycott “is being promoted by a foreign organization” whose members include known terror groups, among them Hamas and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.

“[Y]et Local 10 cooperated with the racist boycott despite knowing of its illegality and discriminatory intent,” said the group.

The Israeli ship, the ZIM Volans, originally intended to dock in Oakland the week of May 17, but then turned towards Los Angeles, according to AROC’s website. At some point, for reasons that aren’t clear, it again made for Oakland.

The last time an Israeli ship attempted to dock at the Port of Oakland was in 2014. The ship, the ZIM Piraeus, was met by protesters who physically threatened warehouse union workers and blocked their vehicles, according to reports at the time. The protesters succeeded in driving the ship from port.

In the wake of their success in Oakland, pro-BDS activists called for a June 6 boycott of the ZIM Tarragona, scheduled to dock in the Port of New York and New Jersey on Sunday.

JNS Article: https://www.jns.org/pro-bds-group-blocks-israeli-ship-from-unloading-in-oakland/

Jewish pro-Trump groups accuse Facebook of censorship ahead of US elections

The platform had moved to ban several pro-Trump groups comprised of Russian American Jews, raising questions over the role social-media companies play in the current free exchange of ideas.

(October 30, 2020 / JNS) Over the last several months, the coronavirus pandemic and the upcoming presidential election have left many Americans feeling confused and uncertain about the future. With normal social interaction limited, many have shifted towards the digital world to connect, share, discuss and debate.

During the 2016 election, tech companies such as Facebook, Twitter and Google came under fire for becoming venues for the spread of false information on all kinds of subjects. In order to address these concerns, these platforms have stepped up policing in order to limit the spread of misinformation and to fact check news being shared. However, for some, these social-media companies have gone too far in their crackdown, raising questions over the role that these companies play in the free exchange of ideas in the 21st-century.

In recent weeks, Facebook had moved to ban several pro-Trump groups that were mainly comprised of Russian American Jews.

“During the past several days, the following groups, numbering in the thousands, have been methodically and surreptitiously removed from Facebook: “Russian American Ashkenazi Jews” (15,000 members), “Patriotic Jewish Republicans” (8,400 members), “Russian Speaking Americans for Trump 2020” (16,500 members) and Евреи Силиконовой Долины и Сан Франциско, Объединяйтесь! [“Jews of the Silicon Valley and San Francisco, United!”] (18,600) have been eliminated by Facebook,” Svetlana, a moderator for Russian American Ashkenazi Jews, told JNS.

However, recently both Russian Speaking Americans for Trump 2020 and and Евреи Силиконовой Долины и Сан Франциско, Объединяйтесь! have been reinstated by Facebook, while the other two remain permanently banned.

“The majority of the members in the now-deleted groups are refugees from the former Soviet Union. Many of them are ‘refuseniks’ who had to fight for their right to live in a free country,” she said. “Denying them their right to free speech so close to this year’s most important election is both disconcerting and unacceptable.”

In screenshots provided to JNS, news articles from legitimate sources such as The Jerusalem Post have been flagged for review due to violations of Facebook’s community standards. Other screenshots show users being banned or restricted from posting due to violations of their Community Standards.

Facebook and other tech giants, such as Google and Twitter, have come under fire for their decisions on what content to allow and not allow on their sites. In particular, conservatives have grown upset over these platforms for what they consider targeting conservative news and viewpoints on their platforms. For example, Facebook and Twitter recently decided to block links to a story by the New York Post concerning former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden.

On the other side, Democrats have complained that the social-media companies have not done enough to police their platforms for extremism, including anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial. Both Twitter and Facebook announced this month they would remove content that denies the Holocaust.

As part of the Communications Decency Act of 1996, Section 230 provides immunity for website publishers from third-party content. In the case of tech giants such as Facebook and Twitter, it spares the social-media sites from being held liable for posts, photos and videos they allow or remove. However, many lawmakers have come to view the rules as outdated with even Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg saying in his testimony on Oct. 28 that he believes it would be necessary to “update the law.”

“Democrats often say that we don’t remove enough content, and Republicans often say we remove too much,” he told Congress. “The fact that both sides criticize us doesn’t mean that we’re getting this right, but it does mean there are real disagreements about where the limits of online speech should be.”

‘The law must be revised (or interpreted) to provide protection’

With over 2.7 billion active users, Facebook is the biggest social network worldwide. While many people use the platform to connect with family and friends, post pictures (babies and dogs are always hits) or promote their business, others use the platform as a primary source of news and updates.

While the First Amendment provides protections regarding government action, social media has now in a sense taken over the role of “the public square” in American life, especially during the pandemic, according to Marc Greendorfer, founder of the Zachor Legal Institute.

“While social-media companies are not government agencies, they often provide governmental or quasi-governmental services, sometimes as monopolists,” he told JNS. “Social media is now the primary forum that Americans use to engage in First Amendment activity, and the law must be revised (or interpreted) to provide protection against viewpoint discrimination on these platforms.”

A Facebook company spokesperson did not provide any details as to why these particular pro-Trump groups were banned or what constitutes a violation of their policies.

“Our Community Standards apply across our services, including in Groups. We removed two of the Groups for violations of our Community Standards,” a spokesperson told JNS.

Ettie Kryksman, who serves as administrator and founder of the Facebook groups “Jewish Lives Matter: Jews for Trump” and co-administrator of “Jewish Republicans for Trump,” told JNS that while her group has not been banned so far, they are “continuously being targeted by Facebook Fact Checkers finding ‘false’ or ‘partially false’ content, or ‘missing information,’ on perfectly legitimate posts.”

She said, for example, “posts portraying [Joe] Biden unfavorably are deemed false, such as the post of Biden in a parking lot campaigning to virtually no one.”

Greendorfer noted that while social-media companies have the right enforce their own terms of service to ensure that users are not harassing other users or spreading false information, they cannot engage in viewpoint discrimination.

“The problem is that much of the fact-checking is done in a biased manner, which arguably is in and of itself a violation of the platforms’ terms of service,” said Greendorfer.

Indeed, questions are being raised on the neutrality of these social-media companies. For example, a member of Facebook’s election integrity team, Anna Makanju, formerly worked for Biden, while the Biden campaign also hired a former Facebook executive, Jessica Hertz, for his transition team.

‘It’s critical to have an ability to communicate’

Eugene Luskin, moderator of the Russian American Ashkenazi Jews Facebook group, told JNS that his family had escaped both Nazism and Stalinism, and that he could never have imagined “a total crackdown on the freedom of speech yet again this time in this wonderful country.”

He further explained that for the most part, these online groups serve as a social forum for Russian Americans Jews, especially during the pandemic when they cannot meet in person.

“For many Jewish immigrants and refugees here, it’s critical to have an ability to communicate, to discuss things. There are many platforms and tools for such communication, but many of us moved to Facebook as the most convenient and trusted one,” he said.

“We have several groups on Facebook that unite many American-born Jews and Jewish refugees/immigrants from ex-USSR and Eastern Europe territories. For many, especially elderly retired people, these were the main platforms for communication with friends, which is even more critical for their mental health during the pandemic,” he said.

“It doesn’t matter which views or preferences each one of us has,” stressed Luskin. “The way it’s handled today is a slippery slope that will end up in the same place where we were born.”

Indeed, Greendorfer said that “when fact-checking is used to justify viewpoint discrimination, social-media companies should not be provided with the protections of federal or state laws.”

Article on JNS: https://www.jns.org/jewish-pro-trump-groups-accuse-facebook-of-censorship-ahead-of-election/

Covert Cash: What US universities Don’t Want You to Know about their Foreign Funding

The Clarion Project just released an important investigative report on foreign influence at U.S. universities. It was an honor to have our work at Zachor Legal Institute featured in this report.

How do we define ‘antisemitism’?

Earlier this month, 140 concerned organizations sent a letter to Facebook requesting that this leading online company fully adopt the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) working definition of anti-Semitism to accurately identify the anti-Semitism that proliferates throughout its social media platform.

The reasons that adopting the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism specifically are so critical include:

  1. IHRA has become the international de facto standard for defining what is (and what is not) anti-Semitism, endorsed/adopted by more than 40 countries.
  2. IHRA relates to ages-old anti-Semitism directed at Jews, as well as modern anti-Semitism directed at Israel as a proxy for Jews.  On university campuses and in social media, it is the more modern anti-Israel variety that is so widespread.

The Facebook letter was part of the ongoing and intensified efforts to advocate for governmental institutions and social media companies to adopt IHRA.

We are starting to see results.  Shortly after receiving this letter, Facebook announced that it has strengthened its policy on treating identifying anti-Semitism, moving closer to the IHRA definition.

In the U.S., the State Department has adopted the IHRA definition.  Yet other governmental institutions and leading social media platforms have been reluctant to do the right thing and embrace the most accurate definition of anti-Semitism, thus shirking their civic responsibility to stop this discriminatory hatred from being propagated.

Therefore, it is instructive to examine the recent actions in the state of Florida, which can serve as a model within the United States for creating the appropriate state and local legal infrastructure for combating anti-Semitism.  This includes using IHRA as a guideline for definition as well as introducing provisions to penalize those guilty of spreading anti-Semitism in public schools and universities.

Last month, 8,000 Florida State students signed an online petition to remove their student senate president over social media posts described as anti-Jewish.  This prompted the university to pass a resolution combating anti-Semitism as defined by IHRA.

Florida governor Ron DeSantis signed legislation last year mandating that discrimination against Jewish people must be treated the same as acts of racial discrimination in Florida’s public education institutions.  The definition for discrimination against Jews refers to the U.S. State Department definition, which is based upon IHRA.

Finally, at the federal level, President Trump signed an executive order combating anti-Semitism earlier this year specifying that the Title VI anti-discrimination provision of the Civil Rights Act is applicable to anti-Semitism and that IHRA should be considered when defining if an incident at a public school or university is anti-Semitic.

Governor DeSantis called Florida “the most Israel-friendly state in the country,” and he just may be right.  But beyond that, the state of Florida and Florida State University have adopted measures to define anti-Semitism correctly, taking measures to eliminate this hatred from public educational institutions.  Doing so actually doesn’t relate to Israel; rather, joining the international community in adopting the IHRA definition is the first step in enabling Jewish students to study and thrive in environments free of harassment and discrimination.

What is critical now is that other states and universities take notice and join the efforts to define anti-Semitism properly so that it can be identified and eradicated from our public institutions.  Equally important, the largest social media companies should finally begin to use the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism to enforce their internal regulations against hate content, making it more difficult for such postings to be propagated virally.

With such a concerted effort, we can finally push back against the anti-Semitism that continues to skyrocket throughout our country.

https://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2020/08/how_do_we_define_antisemitism.html