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A Quiz About Israel and Hamas for Politicians, Protesters, and the Uninformed

An aerial view of the Temple Mount in the Old City of Jerusalem. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

The six-month anniversary of the savage Hamas terrorist attack of October 7 came and went, and after seeing their vast lack of knowledge on the subject, I was convinced that most American politicians, TV talking heads, protesters, and so-called journalists, should not be talking about Israel.

Far too many just don’t know the simple historical facts needed to intelligently speak about this war. They refer all the time to what they call “Palestine,” the Israeli “occupation,” “Israeli apartheid,” and “Israeli settlements,” which shows they lack a basic understanding of simple facts.

How many of these so-called arbiters of truth do you think would be able to pass a simple quiz? Could they even score a passing grade? And if they could not, what drives them to speak out so harshly against Israel?

How many pundits and protesters could score a 50% on the below short quiz?

1. What year was the First Zionist Congress held?

This founding Zionist meeting was held in Switzerland in 1897. The idea that Zionism originated as a response to German Nazism is false, as is the claim that the Zionists wanted a Jewish State outside of the Holy Land and Jerusalem. The anthem selected at the 1897 Congress included the words “The land of Zion and Jerusalem.” The false claims about Zionism’s origins and goals were created to portray Zionism as having been created to further European colonialism and solve the European problem of antisemitism. Antisemitism was never only a European hatred, and was just as strong or stronger in Islamic majority countries.

2. What percentage of Israelis are not descended from European Jewish communities, but hail from the Middle East and North Africa?

According to the Pew Research Center, a majority of Israeli Jews are Sephardim or Mizrahim (48%) compared to 45% Ashkenazim (European). The remaining 7% are mostly Ethiopian and Indian Jews. The idea that all Israelis are descended from European Jews who came to Israel to escape Nazism is false.

3. Does Israel practice apartheid, and do Palestinian Arabs serve in the Israeli Knesset (legislature)?

The Israeli government system is the antithesis of apartheid. Multiple parties led by Arab citizens participated in Israel’s first election in 1949, and Arab citizens have been candidates and have been elected throughout Israel’s history. Currently, 10 Knesset Members are Arab. The Likud Party, which is very often labeled as racist by those ignorant of Israeli politics, had an Israeli Arab Druze Knesset Member for over 22 years named Ayoob Kara.

4. Who occupied Gaza from 1948 to 1967?

Egypt occupied Gaza from 1948 until June 1967. No attempt was made by any Gazans to free the area from Egypt, nor was there any international pressure to create a Palestinian state there.

5. When was the first President or Prime Minister of Palestine elected?

There has never been a Prime Minister of Palestine. Yasser Arafat became President of the Palestinian National Authority in 1994. The idea of separate Palestinian nationhood did not exist prior to the creation of Israel.

6. What are Israeli settlements?

Settlements are Jewish communities where there are neighborhoods of families in areas that Israel did not control before 1967; put another way, these are cities and towns founded by Israelis in Judea and Samaria, not the so-called “territories.” No settlements were attacked on October 7. There are families with deep roots in the settlements with several generations of children born and raised in the settlements.

7. How long has Israel occupied Gaza?

On October 7, there were no Israeli troops or any Jews or Israelis, in Gaza at all. All Israelis were removed from Gaza in 2005 as part of Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s disengagement plan. Gazans had complete control within their territory for 19 years before October 7. Israel has already relinquished control of over 23,000 square miles of territory it captured in 1967 (including Gaza). By contrast, Israel is only 8,000 square miles. Israel has already sacrificed tremendous amounts of territory in its efforts to try to achieve peace with the Arab nations that surround it.

8. When was the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) formed?

The PLO was founded in 1964 when the Old City of Jerusalem, Gaza, and Judea-Samaria (the so-called “West Bank”) were all occupied by Jordan or Egypt. So, the PLO was created to end the existence of any Israeli control of any land it held after the 1948 Arab-Israeli war.

9. What did Hamas call its October 7 surprise terrorist attack and why?

Hamas and its terrorist allies named the attack Al-Aqsa Flood after a Jerusalem mosque built on the Temple Mount above the Western Wall. Hamas (like Al Qaeda, ISIS, Hezbollah, and the Muslim Brotherhood) is dedicated to a violent, expansive militant version of Islam that sees the murder of civilians as a legitimate part of the wars they launch. Moreover, the use of the name Al-Aqsa is their way of saying that the war doesn’t end until Jews are driven out of Jerusalem.

Moshe Phillips is a commentator on Jewish affairs whose writings appear regularly in the American and Israeli press

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Assault charge laid, arrest made related to incident near the University of Toronto encampment—while its president speaks in Ottawa on antisemitism, and the school seeks a removal injunction

Toronto Police have arrested and charged a man for assault over an incident May 9 near the protest encampment at the University of Toronto’s King’s College Circle on its downtown campus.  Toronto Police Services (TPS) say they responded at 3:45 p.m. that day to a call for assault in the area of the road around […]

The post Assault charge laid, arrest made related to incident near the University of Toronto encampment—while its president speaks in Ottawa on antisemitism, and the school seeks a removal injunction appeared first on The Canadian Jewish News.

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‘Any Chance the Media Would Cover This?’ New Video Shows Terrorists in Gaza Using Humanitarian Aid to Help Prepare Rockets

Terrorists in Gaza using humanitarian aid bags to prop up rockets. Photo: Screenshot

Terrorists in Gaza have been using humanitarian aid bags to prop up rockets they were preparing to shoot at Israelis, new video circulating on social media reveals, underscoring the challenges of delivering aid to Palestinian civilians in the Hamas-ruled enclave without it being stolen.

The Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade — which is the armed wing of Fatah, the political party of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbasused bags from Turkey and UNRWA — the UN agency responsible for the Palestinians — to prop up the rockets, according to the video.

At least three of the bags say they contain “wheat flour,” and the bag from Turkey specifically says it is supposed to go “to the Palestinian people.” It is unclear whether the bags had previously been opened to extract the food and then refilled with sand, for example, or if it still contained the food that was intended to feed Palestinian civilians.

“Any chance the media would cover this, yet another violation of international humanitarian law?” pro-Israel commentator Hen Mazzig wrote on X/Twitter while sharing the video.

Rafah, Gaza: Hamas is using UN humanitarian aid bags as rocket launchers today.

Any chance the media would cover this, yet another, violation of International Humanitarian Law?

— Hen Mazzig (@HenMazzig) May 29, 2024

Almost every day for the past seven months, Hamas and other Gaza-based terrorist organizations have been shooting rockets into Israel from civilian areas, which is a war crime. Tens of thousands of Israelis are internally displaced and unable to return to their homes as a result.

There is mounting evidence that Hamas has also operated in civilian clothing and in civilian infrastructure such as hospitals. However, these violations of international law are rarely noted by much of the media.

The latest video of terrorists using humanitarian aid for military purposes underscores the issue of making sure such aid gets to Palestinian civilians. 

The US built a pier to deliver 2,000,000 meals daily to Palestinian civilians, but after a few weeks of operation, the Pentagon said none of the aid unloaded from the pier had made it to those who needed it. On one occasion, about 70 percent of the aid has been stolen while en route to a UN warehouse. In other cases, it just never showed up.

Israeli estimates suggest approximately 60 percent of the aid that has gone into Gaza has been stolen — either by Hamas or other groups and individuals. Oftentimes, that aid is then sold to the population at high prices, making it difficult to impossible for most Gazans to gain access to it. 

According to Ehud Yaari, an expert at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, Hamas has made more than $500 million in profit from selling humanitarian aid since Oct. 7.

The terror group began the war last October by massacring 1,200 people in Israel and taking more than 250 people hostage, about half of whom have still not been released.

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Columbia University Anti-Zionist Group Endorses Hamas

Demonstrators take part in an anti-Israel demonstration at the Columbia University campus, in New York City, US, Feb. 2, 2024. REUTERS/David Dee Delgado

Columbia University’s chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) has endorsed Hamas, a US-designated terrorist organization, the latest sign of its growing extremism and willingness to embrace antisemitic violence.

“The Palestinian resistance is the only force materially fighting back against isr*el [sic],” the group said in a series of posts shared by Documenting Jew Hatred on Campus, a social media account which exposes antisemitism on college campuses. “There is no way to eliminate the resistance without ending the occupation. When you see a video of a young palestinian [sic] boy traumatized in a hospital talking about how iof [the Israel Defense Forces, or IDF] shot his pregnant mother in cold blood in front of his own eyes, do not question how he chooses to resist years later.”

.@Columbia and @BarnardCollege, @ColumbiaSJP is actively promoting terrorism and anti-Israel rhetoric on their social media channels. They are sounding more and more like Hamas spokespeople every day. When is the university going to permanently ban this “student group”?

— Documenting Jew Hatred on Campus (@CampusJewHate) May 26, 2024

Campus Reform, a higher education watchdog which first reported Documenting Jew Hatred on Campus’ posts, noted that Columbia SJP has added an “inverted red triangle” to its social media biography, further indicating its support for Hamas. The Palestinian terrorist group has used an inverted red triangle in its propaganda videos to indicate an Israeli target about to be attacked, and anti-Israel protesters on university campuses have been using the symbol in their demonstrations.

Columbia SJP, a group that has reformed under multiple organizations since being suspended by school administrators during the fall semester, has been central in staging a slew of riotous demonstrations in which anti-Zionist activists verbally assaulted Jewish students with antisemitic epithets, clamorously expressed support for terrorism and Hamas, and caused thousands of dollars in damages to school property.

The group’s behavior after Hamas’ Oct. 7 massacre across southern Israel is the subject of a lawsuit filed by the StandWithUs Center for League Justice (SCLJ).

The complaint alleges that after bullying Jewish students and rubbing their noses in the carnage Hamas wrought on their people, the pro-Hamas students were still unsatisfied and resulted to violence. They beat up five Jewish students in Columbia’s Butler Library, according to the lawsuit. Another attacked a Jewish students with a stick, lacerating his head and breaking his finger, after being asked to return missing persons posters she had stolen.

Following the incidents, pleas for help allegedly went unanswered and administrators told Jewish students they could not guarantee their safety while SJP held its demonstrations. The school’s apparent powerlessness to prevent anti-Jewish violence was cited as the reason why Students Supporting Israel (SSI), a recognized school club, was denied permission to hold an event on self-defense. Events with “buzzwords” such as “Israel” and “Palestine” were forbidden, administrators allegedly said, but SJP continued to host events while no one explained the inconsistency.

The explosion of end-of-year protests held by the group forced Columbia officials to shutter the campus in April and institute virtual learning. Later, the group occupied Hamilton Hall, forcing President Minouche Shafik to call on the New York City Police Department (NYPD) for help, a decision she hesitated to make. According to The Columbia Spectator, over 108 arrests were made.

“Yes, we’re all Hamas, pig!” one protester was filmed screaming during the fracas, which saw some verbal skirmishes between pro-Zionist and anti-Zionist partisans. “Long live Hamas!” said others who filmed themselves dancing and praising the al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of the Hamas terrorist organization. “Kill another solider!”

Amid the chaos, a prominent rabbi at the school urged Jewish students to leave the campus for the sake of their safety. Ultimately, the university cancelled its main commencement ceremony.

Follow Dion J. Pierre @DionJPierre.

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