Jewish World Update Sep/Oct 2020

Reinstein Book Explores Faith-based Diplomacy
If a large percentage of Jewish people in America are liberal and don’t support President Donald Trump, why is Trump so supportive of Israel? And when Trump decided to move the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, 700 Christian leaders attended the ceremony in Israel but only a handful of Jewish leaders came. Why?

These are some of the questions Josh Reinstein tackles in his new book, due out in September, Titus, Trump and the Triumph of Israel: The Power of Faith Based Diplomacy, from Gefen Publishing House.

Israel is not like other countries, Reinstein said; and unless people look at it through a biblical lens, they’re likely to misinterpret events. An Orthodox Jew, Reinstein said he wrote the book because he realized “many issues needed to be clarified. . . . Many Christians didn’t understand the Jewish perspective. Some were confused about why many traditional Jews keenly collaborated with Christians on worthwhile projects, while Reform Jews, although proud of their Judaism, seemed to work more readily with Muslims than with evangelical Christians.”

Since its inception in 2004, Reinstein has directed the Knesset Christian Allies Caucus, which mobilizes Christian concern and creates a framework for political action. He is also president of the Israel Allies Foundation, a nonprofit that encourages worldwide, faith-based support for Israel, particularly Christian support. Reinstein often speaks to participants on The Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry’s Up to Jerusalem tours in Israel.

Born in Canada, Reinstein grew up in Dallas, Texas, and moved to Israel in 1999, where he served as a tank gunner in the elite 188 unit of the Israel Defense Forces Armored Corps. The Jerusalem Post named him one of the “50 most influential Jews in the world.”

His book is available on Amazon.com.

The Growing BLM Controversy
Israeli-American journalist Caroline Glick recently challenged American Jews to speak out against anti-Semitism within the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement. BLM activists attacked the Orthodox Jewish community of Fairfax in Los Angeles, California, on May 30, vandalizing synagogues and schools and driving through the streets screaming “effing Jews” and “kill the Jews.”

“It’s Kristallnacht all over again,” said Chabad Rabbi Shimon Raichik of what the news media called “peaceful protests” and the Fairfax community now calls the Shavuot Riots.

“The looting not only devastated countless small businesses in the area, but graffiti, some of it explicitly anti-Semitic, was scrawled across at least 5 Orthodox Jewish synagogues and 3 religious schools,” wrote Daniel Greenfield on frontpagemag.com.

Meanwhile, Jewish groups are denouncing Zionist Organization of America President Mort Klein for his tweet calling BLM “a Jew hating, White hating, Israel hating, conservative Black hating, violence promoting, dangerous [George] Soros funded extremist group of haters.”

Most Jewish people have stood solidly with BLM despite its adoption in 2016 of an anti-Israel, pro-BDS (Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions) platform that accuses Israel of “genocide.”

In an article on her website, carolineglick.com, Glick wrote, “Over the past several years both the BLM-Los Angeles head Melina Abdullah and her daughter Thandiwe Abdullah who is the co-founder of the BLM Youth Vanguard have racked up long records of anti-Semitic rants and fawning praise for Nation of Islam leader Farrakhan.”

Louis Farrakhan, who heads The Nation of Islam, has praised Adolf Hitler; called Jewish people “termites”; and said, “the Satanic Jews . . . have infected the whole world with poison and deceit.”

However, said Glick, the media is indifferent to anti-Jewish violence. “Aside from a few Jewish reporters and Orthodox websites, the Shavuot pogrom was largely ignored. And when it was reported, the deliberately anti-Semitic character of the attacks was either downplayed or ignored altogether.”

‘Day of Rage’ Protests Bash Israel
From Mississauga to St. John’s and Halifax to Hamilton, anti-Israel outrage in Canada is at an all-time high, as hundreds of protestors gathered in early July to bash the Jewish homeland under the guise of “No to Annexation,” reported TheJ.ca. In Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal, and other Canadian cities, anti-Israel activists called on the Trudeau government to defund Israel and oppose Israel’s plans to declare sovereignty over parts of Judea and Samaria, including the Jordan Valley. Crowds called for Israel’s destruction, chanting “Free Free Palestine,” “End the Occupation,” and “Viva Viva Intifada, Viva Viva Palestina!” TheJ.ca reported. “Day of Rage” protestors also targeted many U.S. cities, chanting Hamas slogans and demonstrating in front of offices of Jewish organizations, such as Hadassah and Hillel, algemeiner.com reported.

The Dark Side of TikTok
TikTok, the immensely popular social-media platform with people under age 16, is filled with hate and anti-Semitism, Professor Gabriel Weinmann, author of “Spreading Hate on TikTok,” told James Spiro of CTech, reported algemeiner.com. Anti-Semites, Holocaust deniers, and far-right extremists use TikTok to post conspiracy theories that Jews control the world, videos of Adolf Hitler’s speeches, and Ku Klux Klan promos. “These included 43 anti-Semitic messages and 14 different instances of the Nazi salute,” according to a study conducted between February and May 2020, Spiro reported. A TikTok video mocking Holocaust tattoos received more than 600,000 views, algemeiner.com reported.

More Virus, More Faith
Palestinians and Israelis have more faith in God as a result of the coronavirus crisis, a new study by Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung and Keevoon Global Research revealed,
reported The Jerusalem Post. The study surveyed Israelis, Palestinians, Germans, Americans, Brits, Italians, and Poles between April 28 and May 9, the Post said. “Some 34% of Jews and 49% of Palestinians said their faith increased as a result of coronavirus. Some 39% of Americans said their faith in God increased as well. In contrast, only 19% of Germans, 22% of Poles, 22% of Italians and 18% of Brits felt similarly. When asked what they wished for, many Israelis, Palestinians and Americans responded that they hoped the disease would lead ‘everyone to know God and who is in control.’ Similarly, when asked what COVID-19 means to them, several people said that ‘God is trying to tell me something,’” the Post reported.

Israel to Nationalize El Al
The State of Israel will take over the failing El Al Airlines until it can be sold to an investor, The Jerusalem Post reported. “The state will guarantee a $250 million loan and will purchase $150 million worth of stocks in the company, meaning it would control 61% of El Al. The process of releasing these new stocks for the state to buy them is expected to be completed by early October,” the Post said. Transportation Minister Miri Regev reportedly told the head of the El Al Pilots Union that “Israel will not allow El Al to go bust.”

Israel Set to Appoint First-Ever Bedouin Ambassador
Israel’s Foreign Ministry has tapped Ishmael Khaldi to head the country’s Eritrea mission in a move that, if approved, will make him the country’s first-ever Bedouin ambassador, reported JNS.org. Khaldi, who hails from Khawaled, a Bedouin village in northern Israel, has held several Foreign Ministry positions since becoming Israel’s first Bedouin diplomat more than a decade ago, JNS.org reported. He is considered one of Israel’s greatest defenders against the campaign of delegitimization.

Daniel Pearl’s Murderers May Go Free
Four men sentenced to life in prison for the barbaric murder of Jewish Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl in 2002 may go free this year after a Pakistani court overturned their convictions. Pearl, 38, was working as the Journal’s South Asia Bureau chief when he was kidnapped by Muslims and his head sawn off with a knife—an event the killers videotaped and posted online after forcing him to say, “I am a Jew.” Pakistan’s Supreme Court upheld the ruling to release the men. The U.S. State Department has called for “justice.”

Israel’s Chief Rabbinate Says No to Women
Israel’s Chief Rabbinate has threatened to halt ordaining new rabbis in Israel if the High Court of Justice forces it to grant rabbinical training to women, Israel Hayom and JNS.org reported. The rabbinate’s statement followed a petition by women scholars seeking ordination. “The rabbinate rejected the idea outright, saying there is ‘no place’ for female rabbis in Judaism. ‘Jewish law and tradition that the rabbinate is tasked with preserving do not allow women to serve as rabbis,’ the rabbinate said,” reported the two news outlets. In the United States, women serve as rabbis in the Reform and Conservative branches of Judaism. The Chief Rabbinate is ultra-Orthodox and does not recognize Reform or Conservative Judaism.

United to Fly Chicago To Tel Aviv
United Airlines announced it will begin nonstop flights from Chicago to Tel Aviv from O’Hare International Airport in September, reported The Jerusalem Post. The scheduled service will include six flights per week. Flights will depart from Tel Aviv on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays and return to Tel Aviv on Mondays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. All flights will use United’s new Dreamliner 787-9s, the Post said.

For news about Israel updated daily, log on to foi.org/news.

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