News Nosh 4.30.19

APN's daily news review from Israel
Tuesday April 30, 2019

Quote of the day:
“I will say what is clear to me: The criminal process does not overlap with the electoral process. It is also not influenced by it. As the High Court unanimously ruled in a five-justice panel headed by then-Supreme Court President Meir Shamgar: ‘The judgment of the voter is not a substitute for the judgment of the law and cannot replace it.’” 
--Attorney General Avichai Mendelblit makes clear that Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu cannot evade the law.*

You Must Be Kidding #1: 
"Let’s begin by asking the question: was Hitler right or not?  He is the most correct person there is. He was definitely right in every word he said.  His ideology was correct.  There is a male world which fights, which deals with honor and the brotherhood of soldiers.  And there is the soft, moral feminine world which turns the other cheek.  We believe that such [secular Diaspora] Jews carry on this [feminine] heritage, making them the real enemy.  He [Hitler] is 100% correct, aside from the face that he was on the wrong side.”
--Rabbi Eliezer Kashtiel lectured his students about the Holocaust at the Bnei David Yeshiva in Eli settlement.**

You Must Be Kidding #2:
“The Holocaust wasn’t the fact that they killed Jews.  That wasn’t the Holocaust...Humanism, all the secular culture that we believe in Man, that’s the Holocaust. The real Holocaust is being a pluralist, believing in Man, that’s called a Holocaust."
--Rabbi Giora Radler gave his students a lesson at the Bnei David Yeshiva in Eli settlement.**

Front Page:
Yedioth Ahronoth
  • Lieberman: “We won’t join a coalition of a state of religious law”
  • Selfie of the opposition - Today: Swearing-in of the 21st Knesset
  • Next IDF Spokesman: Gil Messing
  • A good appointment // Nahum Barnea
  • “A person who abandons a child is the product of a society in which you can do anything without being held responsible by law” - Avi Nesher speaks openly about the tragedy in which he lost his son
Maariv This Week (Hebrew links only)
Israel Hayom
  • Honorable Knesset - They commit: The 21st Knesset will begin today with a celebratory session
  • Prime Minister to his associates: “The [coalition] partners are exaggerating in their demands”
  • For the sake of his mother and the survivors - Eliraz Keren saw the suffering of his mother, a Holocaust survivor, and established a volunteer system to help them
  • In the shadow of criticism: Gil Messing - IDF Spokesman
  • IDF probing changing the status of the Deep MIFKEDET
  • End to the festivities: Fees of artists performing at Independence Day events will be limited
  • Another cartoon of Netanyahu: the obsession of the NYT // Eldad Beck
  • After 5 years: New video of ISIS leader

News Summary:

*The 21st Knesset is inaugurated today, the IDF gets a new Spokesman and the Attorney General says that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's reelection is irrelevant to ongoing criminal proceedings making top stories in today’s Hebrew newspapers.

Meanwhile, the crisis over the rejection by the Palestinian Authority to take all the Israeli-collected tax funds, unless Israel stops deducting funds armarked for Palestinian prisoners and their families, was largely ignored by the print newspapers. Haaretz put an analysis about it by Noa Landau on the front page and Ynet ran an analysis by Elior Levy. (See Commentary/Analysis below.) Maariv reported on its website that Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas said, "We may declare the Oslo agreement dead.”

**Last night, Channel 13 News aired a recording of two senior rabbis making highly controversial statements in a lesson about the Holocaust at the Bnei David Yeshiva for military veterans at Eli settlement where they teach. Maariv ran an article with the quotes on its website and JPost ran a truncated version. Here are there quotes, most of which were translated by Richard Silverstein on his blog, with some changes here.
Rabbi Eliezer Kashtiel:
“Yes, we’re racists.  We believe in racism.  There are races in the world and there are genetic traits inherent in nations.  This requires that we think how to help them.  There are differences among races.”
A student challenged him, asking “Who appointed you to decide who is who [which nations are best]?”  Kashtiel answered: “[Because] I can see that my achievements are more impressive than his.”
Rabbi Giora Radler:
“The Holocaust wasn’t the fact that they killed Jews.  That wasn’t the Holocaust.  All of the excuses claiming that it was based on ideology or that it was systematic, that’s nonsense.  Because it was based on ideology, to a certain extent, makes it more moral than if you murdered people for no reason. Humanism, all the secular culture that we believe in man, that’s the Holocaust. The real Holocaust is being a pluralist, believing in man, that’s called a Holocaust."
When asked what was his definition of the Holocaust, he replied:
“The Holy One Blessed Be He has been shouting for years that the Diaspora was doomed.  But people don’t listen to him.  That was their illness, which has to be healed by the Holocaust.” He also said: “The logic of the Germans was the right one for them.  Hitler said that a certain group within the population was a calamitous race for mankind.  Because of it [this race], mankind will be destroyed.  They [the race] are bad for humanity and therefore they must be eliminated.  Does this ideology sound logical to you?  Very bad?”
A student answered: “This doesn’t sound moral.”  Radler replied: “Wasn’t Moses cruel and evil like Hitler?  The student responded: “No.”  The rabbi said: “Why not? There is one thing in the world that is bad in the world and that is to be a hypocrite.  Does it make a difference to you if they killed you now with a knife the way they did to Agag [the Amalekite king brutally murdered by the prophet Samuel] or if they kill you in a gas chamber?” Later Radler added: “Let’s begin by asking the question: was Hitler right or not?  He is the most correct person there is.  He was definitely right in every word he said.  His ideology was correct.  There is a male world which fights, which deals with honor and the brotherhood of soldiers.  And there is the soft, moral feminine world which turns the other cheek.  We believe that such [secular Diaspora] Jews carry on this [feminine] heritage, making them the real enemy.  He [Hitler] is 100% correct, aside from the face that he was on the wrong side.”
Maariv wrote:
MK Yair Lapid referred to the tapes and wrote on Twitter: "It's not Judaism, it's not values, people who speak like that are not worthy of being called rabbis or educating youth. Secular people established the State of Israel, any comparison to the Holocaust is racist abomination and Arabs do not want to be slaves. The state must immediately stop funding the army preparatory yeshiva until the racist rabbis are removed from there."
Meretz Chairman MK Tamar Zandberg said: “The Eli pre-military yeshiva should have been closed a long time ago and what (sic- whoever) gave the chauvinism, homophobia and the other hatred that comes out of the program to continue to go wild should not be surprised at the horrifying statements that came out of it today. I petitioned the Education Ministry with a clear and unequivocal demand - stop the state funding of the Eli pre-military yeshiva.”

Quick Hits:
  • Israeli army bars soldier from reserve service for beating up left-wing activist - No legal action has been taken against Alon Segev, who was caught on film attacking activist Guy Butavia, who with other activists from anti-occupation organization Ta'ayush, was escorting Palestinians to pick olives in their groves in the West Bank. (Haaretz and VIDEO)
  • Israeli soldiers shoot and injure Palestinian who fired at them in West Bank - Israeli army says the suspect fired at forces in the northern West Bank and that troops are searching after a different man who may have been involved in the incident. (Haaretz, Israel Hayom and Maariv)
  • Rocket Launched From Gaza Falls in Israel's Territorial Waters - The exact location from where the rocket was launched in the Strip around midnight is still unclear, the army says. (Haaretz)
  • Palestinian prisoner suspends 29-day hunger strike - Last week, Khaled Farraj, 31, a resident from Dheisheh refugee camp near Bethlehem, suspended his 29-day hunger strike, protesting his administrative detention without charges, after his lawyer reached an agreement with the Israeli prosecution. (Maan)
  • Israeli authorities detain Palestinian man escorting ill wife at Gaza crossing - Karam Mustafa Muhammad Tantawi, 51, from Khan Younis, was escorting his ill wife, Safaa Abed al-Majid Tantawi, 47, back to the Gaza Strip after she had received medication for cancer in Jerusalem. (Maan)
  • 27 Palestinian men, women raise flag and sat base of Mt. Everest - Following six days and 100 kilometers of walking and climbing mountains, Climb for Palestine, the organizers of the trip, posted on its Facebook page, “We are 12 women and 16 men from Palestine. Twenty seven of us have succeeded in reaching Mount Everest base at a height of 5,400 meters above the sea level.” The group added, “We raised the flag of Palestine and slogans of solidarity with the prisoners and Jerusalem, which was the least we could do to our Palestinian cause.” (Maan)
  • In light of the expected release of the ‘Deal of the Century’: UN Security Council is holding a discussion on the Middle East - At the request of the Israeli ambassador, the UNSC held with a moment of silence for the victims of the shooting in San Diego.The Palestinian representative left the hall when Israeli ambassador Danny Danon have a speech. (Maariv)
  • The New York times publishes controversial cartoon, again - Jewish and pro-Israel groups blast "untimely bad move" of running an image from Norwegian cartoonist Roar Hagen that depicts Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with his eyes blacked out, carrying a tablet emblazoned with the Star of David. (Israel Hayom and Ynet)
  • Police suspect body found in central Israel is Arab Israeli woman who went missing - 'All the signals were there but nobody lifted a finger,' welfare authorities say about the suspected murder of Najlaa Alamuri, a 19-year-old whose relatives are under arrest. (Haaretz+)
  • Netanyahu wants to cut half a billion shekels from the budget of the public broadcasting corporation - After trying to prevent its establishment, split it and bring about the dismissal of senior officials, the prime minister wants to include in the coalition agreements a clause obligating all the partners to support a drastic cut of “KAN.” (Maariv)
  • Bankrupt Israeli Businessman Hid Over $27 Million in Assets in Europe, Says Trustee - Info is based on report by Black Cube investigators who claim that the Eliezer Fishman’s reps tried to sell them projects in Germany. (Haaretz+)
  • Bar Refaeli Claims She Doesn't Live Anywhere. The Court Disagrees - Judges dodge the question of whether a person can be devoid of national residency for tax purposes, but Refaeli will still have to pay back millions. (Haaretz+)
  • Number of Arab Engineering Students Doubles in Six Years - 'The impressive figures testify to the great success of the revolution in making higher education accessible in Arab society,' says a chairwoman from Council for Higher Education. (Haaretz+)
  • 'If a teenage girl would have had Instagram during the Holocaust' - An ambitious initiative sets to expose and engage teenagers in Holocaust remembrance through Instagram stories recreating the true story of a girl who was murdered in Auschwitz. (Yedioth/Ynet)
  •  'New Genre of Memory': Holocaust Victim's 'Instagram Page' Draws Fire for Dumbing Down History - Controversial social media campaign 'Eva's Story,' aimed at educating young Israelis about the Holocaust, has drawn both criticism and praise. (Haaretz+)
  • ‘Miracle of Miracles’ and Call From Trump: Hundreds Attend Vigil in Poway After Synagogue Shooting - Some 600 people attend memorial, with wounded Rabbi Yisroel Goldstein eulogizing victim Lori Kaye; some attendees unmoved by president's concern about anti-Semitism. (Haaretz+)
  • Wounded Rabbi of Attacked San Diego Synagogue 'Amazed' by Trump's 'Comforting Call' - 'He spoke about his love of peace and Judaism and Israel,' Rabbi Yisroel Goldstein says of the 15-minute call of condolence he received from the U.S. president. (JTA, Haaretz and Ynet)
  • WATCH Iranian FM Zarif on Fox News: Foreign powers, including Israel, want to 'lure' Trump into conflict with Iran - 'They have all shown an interest in dragging the United States into a conflict,' said Iran's foreign minister of Israel, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates. (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • IMF: Iran likely to be among Middle Eastern countries hardest hit by volatile politics, oil prices - International Monetary Fund expects 6% retraction in Iran's economic growth in 2019 – and that does not factor in recent announcement by U.S. that waivers on Iranian oil exports to expire next week, further deepening Iran's economic recession. (Agencies, Israel Hayom)
  • Jean Paul Gaultier coming to Israel's Eurovision to dress Madonna - The French designer is expected to arrive in Israel on May 13. The last time he dressed Israeli singer Dana International for her iconic 1998 performance. (Haaretz+)
  • 80 groups urge University of Massachusetts to reverse sponsorship of anti-Israel ‘political rally’ - “Providing the imprimatur of three academic departments to such a politically motivated and directed event violates the core academic mission of the university, suppresses student expression and impedes the free exchange of ideas,” says a letter to UMass chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy. (Israel Hayom)
  • Commander of Guantanamo Bay Prison Is Fired - Navy Rear Adm. John Ring was relieved of duty for a 'loss of confidence in his ability to command.’ (Agencies, Haaretz)
  • ISIS Releases Video of Leader al-Baghdadi for First Time in Five Years - Leader says recent Sri Lanka bombings were revenge for the fall of the group's last stronghold in Syria. (Agencies, Israel Hayom)
  • Turkey's Kale Eyes F-35 Options During U.S. Spat\ - NATO ally Turkey has said it will take delivery of the S-400s in July, even while sources told Reuters earlier this month that Washington had halted delivery of F-35-related equipment to the country. (Agencies, Haaretz)

Did the Kingdom of David exist? New wall found in southern Israel reignites debate
A new find – a fortified wall in Lachish – proves the Kingdom of Israel and Judah was already vast in the 10th century, says the archaeologist who located it. But skeptics disagree. (Nir Hasson, Haaretz+)
Palestinian Fund Freeze: Who Will Help Netanyahu Save the Oslo Accords This Time? (Noa Landau, Haaretz+) The Israeli debate over the accords' remaining provisions has been based on the assumption that Palestinians’ money can be taken hostage and returned in exchange for its rightful owners’ 'good behavior.’
Elections are over; now Israelis notice the Palestinian Authority is collapsing (Elior Levy, Yedioth/Ynet) The outgoing government voted to withhold tax revenues from the Palestinians, in the sum of stipends to families of convicted or killed terrorists; pay cuts to security forces bring frustration; Hamas is making the most of it and in Israel – some are looking for a way out.
Alone in an Israeli Hospital, This Palestinian Died of His Wounds (Amira Hass, Haaretz+) Last Saturday Omar Yunes, 20 years old, died of his injuries. He died in Beilinson Hospital in Petah Tikva, as a prisoner under guard, according to the instructions of the Shin Bet security service. His brother tried for a week to obtain an entry permit to Israel to be by his side, in vain. Yunes was hospitalized on April 20. He was suffering from a number of gunshot wounds in the belly, chest and pelvis. The police said he aroused the suspicions of police officers when he came close to a Border Police position at the Za’atra (Tapuah) junction. A number of policemen chased him on foot and another police officer blocked his way with a police patrol car. According to the police’s version of events, as unquestionably reported in the Israeli media, the young man pulled a knife and tried to open the door of the patrol car “with the intention of stabbing the police officer.” The police officer shot at him. What is true and what is not in this version – we don’t know. After all, the generic word was said: “Terrorist,” and there is no chance that something will be investigated, even not the assumption that it was possible to catch him without causing him mortal injuries. On Monday, April 22, the brother Abed Yunes, a 26-year-old farmer, submitted a request for an entry permit to see his brother. Numerous more requests were submitted Tuesday and Wednesday. On Thursday, lawyers for the brother asked the court to order the issuance of a permit, without an escort. The people of Israel celebrated the end of the holiday of freedom, with Saturday off the next day. The judge, Miriam Lifschitz-Prives, refused to intervene and Omar Yunes died alone.
Does Jewish anti-Semitism exist? (Ben-Dror Yemini, Yedioth/Ynet) The controversial caricature published by the Jewish-owned New York Times, showing Trump as a blind Jew walking his Netanyahu-looking dog, proves that anti-Israel agenda can evolve into something much bigger.
Silence Reigns in Israel as the Last Whispers Against the Occupation Disappear (Yitzhak Laor, Haaretz+) One possible answer: What is taking place here is not fascism. Despite the attacks on the judicial establishment and the ongoing decline of the education system, what we are seeing here, as in many other places, is the relatively new phenomenon of right-wing populism – an alliance of factors (racism, religion, xenophobia and ultranationalism) – arrayed in the name of hostility to “order.” Before our eyes, the illusion that a large, decentralized political society will win the hearts of a majority of its citizens is disintegrating. Why “illusion”? Because when the political society grew, the pie shrank in an extended recession and the rage of those who remained outside was redirected against the “cake-eating elites.” From this follows the hostility to “the swamp in Washington,” the European Union and the “big labor unions.” The populist right makes use of forces from the fascist past and is aided by the so-called left, which is nothing but populism for the poor in spirit. But there’s another possibility: that Israeli fascism won back in 1967, and has for years imposed its reign of terror on “the enemies of order” – the Palestinians…Yes, Israel lied to itself about the “temporary” nature of the occupation, succeeded in squeezing odd rulings on the territories from the High Court of Justice and mumbling the (American) lie that “the settlements are an obstacle to peace.” These lies gave rise to national unity on a shaky foundation, cultivating a Shakespearean ghost that keeps returning and refuses to stay buried: “Some day there will be apartheid,” “some day there will be a Palestinian state,” a persistent whisper that jeopardized the “order” that has remained incomplete since 1948, or 1967 – your choice.
Israel should prepare for the day China will rule the Middle East (Alex Fishman, Yedioth/Ynet) Israeli government has so far been dangerously indifferent to Chinese plans to invest hundreds of millions of dollars in Syria over the next 30 years, effectively cementing their presence in the war-battered, neighboring state.
Invisible Kahol Lavan (Haaretz Editorial) The opposition’s struggle must consist of more than just parliamentary activism. It must mobilize public opinion against the right’s political agenda and provide an alternative. To do this, it must explain to the public why the agenda the right is pursuing is problematic. The opposition must connect the dots for the public by showing how every action the government undertakes and every law it passes is part of a larger anti-democratic picture. That annexing Palestinian territories without offering the Palestinians true partnership in a single democratic state, requires passing laws to ensure Jewish superiority in Israel and the territories it annexes. To do this, Israel will also have to get rid of two Basic Laws that guarantee fundamental human rights in the state – the Basic Law on Human Dignity and Liberty, and the Basic Law on the Freedom of Occupation. And since Israel is consciously acting against the values of equality and freedom, it also has to weaken the Supreme Court, whose job, among other things, is to ensure that the government remains loyal to its founding principles and its democratic character by voiding unconstitutional legislation. In the short time that has passed since the election, one doesn’t get the impression that the opposition plans to conduct a political battle of the type required for these troubled times.
Our job is to take care of all the citizens of Israel (Benny Gantz, Maariv) I am aware of my commitment to those who voted for us. I intend to be a public servant loyal to his people and his country - to those who elected me and those who did not.
Israel's rabbis think genetic testing can 'prove' Jewishness. They're wrong (Noah Slepkov, Haaretz+) The Israeli rabbinate, pushing DNA tests, has fallen into the trap of 19th century racial science: Jewishness is an identity, not a genetic construct – and it can't be measured in a lab.
Far-right extremists are killing Jews in America. Not Donald Trump (Jonathan S. Tobin, Haaretz+) Liberal U.S. Jews fear Trump as much as far right shooters. That's illogical, foolish and damaging.
After San Diego Synagogue Shooting, U.S. Will Have to Increase Online Tracking to Stop the Next Murderer (Amos Harel, Haaretz+) Former cyber chief says sooner or later U.S. will have to take page out of Israel's playbook regarding monitoring and vetting.
'Woman Is the Jew of the World'
Delphine Horvilleur sought the ‘right’ Judaism for her in Israel, found it in New York and became one of France’s few female rabbis. She now published a new book about anti-Semitism. (Interviewed by Gaby Levin in Haaretz+)
‘I wanted people to see me as I am’
Linda Taha, a religious Muslim artist from Jaljulya, made the decision to remove her hijab two years ago. She reminds me of myself. (Interviewed by  Emily Amrousi in Israel Hayom)
Prepared for APN by Orly Halpern, independent freelance journalist based in Jerusalem.
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