News Digest — 7/22/20

Ari Fuld’s Killer Sentenced To Life In Prison, NIS 1.25 Million In Restitution

Seconds after being stabbed repeatedly in the back by Palestinian Khalil Jabarin in 2018, Ari Fuld chased after his attacker, releasing several rounds from his handgun before collapsing from his injuries.

Fuld’s act of bravery occurred at a strip mall in Gush Etzion junction and witnesses credited the 45-year-old American-Israeli with saving their lives and preventing Jabarin’s terror attack from continuing.

On Tuesday (21st) an Israeli court sentenced Jabarin to life in prison, in addition to ordering him to pay $365,128 in restitution to Fuld’s family.  Jabarin was convicted of murder in January.

Until his death, Fuld remained an unwavering voice defending the State of Israel’s right to exist, both online and in real life directly challenging those who promoted falsehoods about the Jewish state.

The Fuld family was represented by Attorney Maurice Hirsch, who commented in January, “Ari’s murder was a direct result of the rampant incitement in the Palestinian Authority’s education system and the monthly salaries the PA pays to terrorists.  We expect the court to sentence the murderer to life in prison so that he will only be released when he dies.”

According to Palestinian Authority policy, murderers like Jabarin and their families are entitled to lifetime monthly stipends, a practice that Israel and the United States has attempted to thwart legally.

In addition to his widow Miriam, Fuld left behind four children in the town of Efrat, in Judea.

Fuld, an Israeli-American, was born in New York and later moved to Israel.



Fatah And Hamas To Hold ‘Historic’ Joint Rally In Gaza Against Annexation

Fatah Secretary-General Jibril Rajoub announced on Monday (20th) that rival Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas will hold a joint rally in the Gaza Strip against Israeli annexation, “in the coming days,” according to a statement published by the Palestinian Authority’s official WAFA news agency.

“The rally will be a historic point in consolidating the united Palestinian position in the face of the annexation project,” Rajoub said, referring to Israel’s declared plan to annex parts of the West Bank in accordance with US President Donald Trump’s controversial peace plan – a plan that in recent weeks appears to have been put on the back burner amid a resurgent coronavirus.

According to Rajoub, both Palestinian Authority Leader Mahmoud Abbas and other “national leaders” will speak at the event.  It was unclear from the statement whether Abbas would participate by video or in person.

The head of the Hamas terror organization, Ismail Haniyeh, will also speak at the event, Hamas political bureau member Khalil al-Hayya said in a statement.

“This is a message to all sides.  We are stressing the unified position of our people in all its factions and forces, wherever they are located,” he said.

Fatah and Gaza-based terror group Hamas have been bitterly divided since 2007, when a bloody civil war between the two rival Palestinian movements ended with Hamas expelling Fatah from the Gaza Strip.  Several attempts have been made since to mend the rift in Palestinian politics, but so far none has been successful.

Rajoub said that the joint rally would send a message of Palestinian unity to the world, while emphasizing that the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) would remain in charge.

“We must raise the voices of the united Palestinian people, who adhere to the establishment of an independent state with Jerusalem as its capital, based on the 1967 borders and the return of refugees in accordance with international law, under the leadership of the PLO,” Rajoub said.

In what they called a step towards “national unity,” Rajoub and Hamas deputy Salih al-Arouri held a press conference on July 2, in which they announced that the two movements would coordinate on anti-annexation activities.

The announcement was received with broad skepticism among Palestinians, who have seen numerous reconciliation attempts – even unity governments on paper – come and go without tangible results.  While the two leaders sought to downplay differences between the two organizations, many seemed doubtful that this time was any different.

On the same day that Rajoub and al-Arouri held their press conference, PA security forces broke up a rally in Jenin at which Hamas flags were raised.  Hamas condemned the action, calling on the PA to “preserve the spirit of unity.” according to the Hamas-linked Safa News Agency.



Holland Admits It Funded Palestinian Terrorists

It took the Dutch government seven years to acknowledge they had been funding a Palestinian group that paid salaries to two terrorists convicted of murdering an Israeli teenager last year, the head of a Jerusalem-based watchdog organization said Wednesday (22nd).

NGO Monitor had been sounding the alarm bell about the connections between a Palestinian group called the Union of Agricultural Work Committees (UAWC) and the Palestinian terror group, Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP).

Forced to answer questions about the UAWC in Holland’s parliament, Dutch Foreign Trade Minister Sigrid Kaag on Tuesday (21st) admitted that Holland had provided tens of millions of Euros in funding to the group, despite being reportedly informed about its connection to terrorism.

“A small group of Netherland’s government officials directed E20 million to the terror-linked Palestinian “agriculture” NGO in the past 7 years, all documented by @NGOmonitor,” the organization’s founder Gerald Steinberg tweeted.

Last year, two employees of the UAWC were arrested and charged for their roles in the bombing attack that killed 17-year-old Rina Shnerb and wounded her father and brother.  Both were found to be members of the PFLP, which is on the list of EU-recognized terror organizations.

Faced with the repeated evidence, Kaag finally ordered the suspension of financial support for the alleged Palestinian “aid organization.”

Israel’s Channel 20 news reported that the two were involved in the finance department of UAWC, so that their salaries were funded in part with Dutch taxpayers money.

“The government regrets that this had not become clear before.  Because careful action is so important in this regard, I decided to commission external research into any ties between PFLP and UAWC and the way in which UAWC implements its own policy that employees should not be active politically, before a decision can be taken about further cooperation with UAWC,” said Sigrid Kaag.

“Minister Kaag’s claim that she was not aware of UAWC ties to terrorist groups before, comes as cheap,” Dutch Jewish news website said, stressing that the Dutch government  had received numerous reports from NGO Monitor on the issue and other groups and individuals.

NGO Monitor expressed hope that the statement by the Dutch minister “will be followed up with serious sanctions and a demand for the return of Dutch money, as well as the installation of safeguards to prevent future misuse of public money.”



‘Hateful Imagery:’ Twitter Locks Out Jewish Users For Posting Star Of David

The Campaign Against Anti-Semitism (CAA) announced on Monday (20th) that Twitter “has deemed the Star of David, (a symbol of Judaism and Jewish pride), to be ‘hateful imagery,’ and is locking the accounts of users who display it.”

According to the CAA, several Twitter users contacted the UK-based watchdog organization in the past several days to complain that their accounts were locked, with the social media giant providing the following explanation: “We have determined that this account violated the Twitter rules.  Specifically for: Violating our rules against posting hateful imagery.  You may not use hateful images or symbols in your profile image or profile header.  As a result we have blocked your account.”

The CAA added that Twitter told users that deleting the “hateful imagery,” in this case the Star of David, would lead to reinstatement of their accounts.

CAA Director of Investigations and Enforcement Stephen Silverman commented, “It is deplorable enough that Twitter consistently fails to act against anti-Semitism on its platform, but now it is taking action against Jews for the simple crime of showing pride in their identity by displaying a Star of David.  It never fails to astound just how low Twitter is prepared to go.”

Among the Stars of David locked accounts were renderings of blue and white stars, in addition to yellow stars reminiscent of the badges Jews were forced to wear by the Nazis.

Silverman continued, “So often social media companies claim that they lack the resources to tackle hate on their platforms, but Twitter has brought an end to the lie of that claim, by demonstrating that it does have the resources, but chooses to target the benign symbol of a victimized minority instead of the countless racists who use its platform with impunity.’

Silverman concluded, “Twitter must immediately restore these accounts, apologize to the owners, and pledge finally to take robust action against the anti-Semites whom it has enabled for so long.”



New Israeli Trial To Check If Pomegranate Oil Can Improve Memory

Rambam Medical Center’s Memory Clinic is kicking off a new clinical trial testing the impact of Omega 5 acid, extracted from pomegranate seed oil, on patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI)

MCI is the stage between the expected cognitive decline of normal aging and the more serious decline of dementia.

Specifically, the experiment will check to see if “GranaGard” pomegranate oil for preventing and treating neurodegenerative diseases can slow down memory loss in 100 patients.

The double-blind experiment will last 12 months.  During that time, 50% of the patients will be given the GranaGard and 50% will be given a placebo.

Prof. Ruth Gabizon, a senior degenerative brain disease researcher in the Department of Neurology at Hadassah University Hospital, who helped develop GranaGard said that the patients will be given a series of standardized memory tests throughout the course of the trial and their improvement will be tracked.

Approximately 50 million Americans are affected by neurodegenerative diseases each year, according to the National Institutes of Health.

Omega 5 acid, also known as punicic acid, has long been known as one of the strongest naturally occurring antioxidants and is attributed with having anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer and immune system strengthening effects.  However, Gabizon explained, it cannot reach the brain or central nervous system to a sufficient degree without scientific intervention because the liver prevents it from being broken down and dissolved into the bloodstream.

GranaGard was developed using a nanotechnology patent developed by scientists from the Israeli biotechnology company Granalix.  The technology “cuts down” the Omega 5 into smaller pieces or “nanodroplets” that dissolve in the stomach.  Owing to their small size, the Omega 5 droplets reach the brain.

Prof. Haim Ovadia, a senior researcher in the Neuroimmunology Lab at Hadassah Medical Center, is familiar with GranaGard and confirmed that it has been shown to prevent neurodegeneration diseases first in mouse models and now preliminarily in humans.

He said in mouse models with Alzheimer’s, it was found that their memory improved from use of the GranaGard  pomegranate oil.