In a recent podcast interview, award-winning Jewish actress Julianna Margulies gave her brutally honest opinion about the Oct. 7 attack on Israel by the Hamas terrorist organization, the resulting Israel-Hamas war, the lack of solidarity with Israel and the support Hamas terrorists are getting among many college students.
At one point during her guest appearance on The Back Room With Andy Ostroy, she targeted youths using “they/them” pronouns who’ve been voicing solidarity with Hamas, saying they would be the first to be “beheaded” if they ever stepped foot in the Gaza Strip, which is controlled by the terrorist group.
“It’s those kids who are spewing this antisemitic hate that have no idea if they stepped foot in an Islamic country, these people who want us to call them ‘they/them’ or whatever they want us to call them … it’s those people that will be the first people beheaded and their heads played like a soccer ball on the field,” said The Morning Show star. “And that who they’re supporting? Terrorists who don’t want women to have their rights? LGBTQ people get executed, bar none. And this is who you’re supporting? It’s so insane to me that it’s laughable if it wasn’t so sad.”
The Good Wife star also found fault with college educators and asked, “Where are the professors calling all of these students into the auditorium and saying ‘Hold on a minute. Guys, do you understand what a terrorism organization is about? Learn what you are supporting.’”
“There are Muslims, Christians, Catholics, Buddhists, and Jews that are being held hostage, and you’re ripping down posters? Why?” she further asked. “What is that going to do? What are you actually trying to say? … I really wish all these kids would just for one minute stop screaming and hurting people and actually learn of which they speak.”
Later on in the interview, which aired on Nov. 20, the actress said TikTok “should be banned” after its users recently promoted a 2002 “Letter to America” written by Osama bin Laden that defended the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Margulies said “social media literally has distorted pretty much all of history.” She also said she is “really disappointed” with the disinformation The New York Times and BBC are spreading in their reporting of the Israel-Hamas war, calling it “careless.”
Margulies, who is the founder of The Holocaust Educator School Partnership at the Museum of Jewish Heritage, spoke at the Variety Hollywood & Antisemitism Summit last month about the “deafening silence” from her colleagues in the Hollywood industry when it comes to antisemitism. She further said on the podcast she is “stunned” at the lack of response given in the industry to the atrocities that unfolded in Israel on Oct. 7. She specifically addressed her non-Jewish peers in Hollywood, saying, “it’s the non-Jews that need to speak up, and it really brings me back to the Holocaust and how our ancestors must have felt when their friends suddenly were like ‘Sorry, I can’t come over any more.’”
Towards the end of the podcast, she said it hurts that her non-Jewish friends have not checked in on her amid the hate Israel and Jews around the world are now facing since the start of the Israel-Hamas war.
“When girlfriends of mine — who were at my wedding, where I got married under a chuppah by a rabbi — have still yet to reach out to me to say ‘Are you OK?’ that’s where the hurt comes in,” she explained. “From people that you thought valued your life the way I value theirs. The hurt for me and for most of my girlfriends who are Jewish is like, how have our friends not reached out?”
Iran Unveils New Air Defense Weaponry
i24 News – Iran demonstrated new weaponry on Saturday, including what it said was the locally made Arman anti-ballistic missile system and the Azarakhsh low-altitude air defense system, said the official IRNA news agency. Saturday’s unveiling ceremony of the two vehicle-mounted systems was held in the presence of Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Ashtiani.
“With the entry of new systems into the country’s defense network, the air defense capability of the Islamic Republic of Iran will increase significantly,” said IRNA.
Video of the new Azarakhsh SHORAD engaging a target drone
— Iran Defense|نیروهای مسلح جمهوری اسلامی ایران (@IranDefense) February 17, 2024
The Arman missile system is said to be able to “simultaneously confront six targets at a distance of 120 to 180 km,” while the Azarakhsh missile system “can identify and destroy targets up to a range of 50 km with four ready-to-fire missiles.”
The announcement comes amid tensions across the Middle East, with Yemen’s Iran-backed Houthis attacking vessels linked to the United States, UK and Israel in the Red Sea in a show of solidarity with the Gaza Strip.
— Press TV (@PressTV) February 17, 2024
The U.S. and its allies in the Middle East are concerned with Iran’s growing role at the international global arms market, The Wall Street Journal said on Friday. The transformation of the industry, boosted by Russia’s “purchase of thousands of drones that altered the battlefield in Ukraine, has helped Tehran scale up its support of militia allies in Middle East conflicts,” read the report.
‘Exceptional Opportunity’: Blinken Says ‘Virtually Every Arab Country’ Wants to Normalize Ties with Israel
i24 News – U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said at the Munich Security Conference on Saturday that the present moment represented an “exceptional opportunity” for Israel to normalize ties with Arab states.
“Virtually every Arab country now wants to integrate Israel into the region to normalize relations,” the official told the conference, according to Reuters.
Blinken also spoke of an “urgent” imperative to “proceed with a Palestinian state that would also ensure the security of Israel.” He said there was a regional effort underway to revive the Palestinian Authority, and turn it into a viable institution.
Hamas Suspends Hostage Deal Talks and Demands Aid, Arab Media Reports
i24 News – In a recent statement published on Telegram, Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh pointed fingers at Israel for the lack of advancement in reaching a ceasefire agreement in Gaza, the terrorist group disclosed on Saturday.
Yet, Arab media later reported that Hamas suspended all negotiation and ceasefire talks due to a demand for aid.
Haniyeh emphasized Hamas’s consistent efforts to engage positively with mediators to halt aggression against the Palestinian people, end the unjust siege, and facilitate aid delivery, shelter, and reconstruction efforts.
Despite Hamas’s purported flexibility in negotiations, Haniyeh lamented Israel’s perceived maneuvers and delays, which, he claimed, exacerbate the plight of the Palestinian population.
Notably, one of the sticking points in the negotiations revolves around the release of prisoners held by Hamas, with the organization highlighting its previous concession of releasing hostages in exchange for security prisoners held in Israel for terrorism offenses.
However, Haniyeh asserted that Hamas remains steadfast in its demands for a comprehensive ceasefire, including the cessation of aggression, withdrawal of Israeli forces from Gaza, lifting of the siege, provision of safe shelter for displaced individuals, particularly in the northern Gaza Strip, and commitment to reconstruction efforts.
The Hamas leader emphasized the importance of addressing the humanitarian crisis in Gaza and ensuring the release of older prisoners and those serving long sentences as part of any potential prisoner exchange agreement.
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