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Gaza Protests Are Based on Jew Hatred, Not Human Rights

The “Gaza Solidarity Encampment” at Columbia University, located in the Manhattan borough of New York City. Photo: Reuters Connect

There is no issue that brings out so many global protestors, week after week, as Israel’s war to defeat the Hamas terrorist regime in Gaza. But whatever is causing this unique display of passion and animosity against Israel, it is not humanitarian concern.

Hamas’ decision to start this war through a campaign of mass murder, rape, and kidnapping on October 7, and then fight it from beneath and behind Gaza’s civilians and civilian infrastructure, has led to heavy casualties and severe suffering for the Palestinian population. Their plight should move us all.

But contrary to pervasive and outrageous claims of “genocide,” the Palestinians’ plight is unfortunately an example of the horrors of urban warfare. It is strange, then, that only this war should generate such hysteria as to drown out every other conflict and atrocity.

No encampments were set up across the world to protest the wars in Syria and Sudan, where so many more innocent Arab civilians died. And no other conflict has aroused the rabid passion and hate displayed against Israel, including Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Unlike Israel’s war to dismantle Hamas, Russia’s war against Ukraine, now in its second year, does arguably merit the use of the terms “genocide” and crimes against humanity.

Every Russian official from Vladimir Putin on down has made the intent of this campaign clear: to wipe out Ukrainians as a national group; indeed, Russia denies Ukrainians’ existence as an ethnic group in the first place.

While the genocidal nature of Russia’s imperial war does not involve total extermination like the Nazi Holocaust, it violates nearly every other section of the Genocide Convention. This includes the forcible transfer of tens of thousands of Ukrainian children to Russia. In fact, Russia is so proud of this forcible transfer that it puts the number at hundreds of thousands.

Torture, sexual violence, and rape are rampant and systematic. While the mass graves and murders uncovered at Bucha and other areas around Kyiv are well known, that process has been replicated across all the Ukrainian territory that Russia controls. The civilian death toll is unknown, but one analysis suggested as many as 75,000 people may have been killed in Mariupol alone.

There are approximately ten million Ukrainian refugees and internally displaced persons, and there is widespread intentional targeting of civilians and civilian infrastructure across the country.

The outcome of the Russia-Ukraine war will also decide the future of the international order. Yet neither the humanitarian atrocities nor the existential element of Russia’s invasion seem to stir much concern in newsrooms, in the streets, or among politicians these days.

The latest civil war in Sudan, raging for just over one year, has also seen barbaric and genocidal violence and civilian displacement and suffering. In particular, the Arab Rapid Support Forces (RSF) have targeted the ethnic African Masalit tribe, reportedly killing as many as 15,000 in West Darfur’s provincial capital of El Geneina alone. This includes reports of the systematic murder of primarily male children and infants. Sexual violence and rape are also ubiquitous and methodical.

Edem Wosornu, director of operations at the UN Office for the Coordination for Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), recently asserted that “By all measures — the sheer scale of humanitarian needs, the numbers of people displaced and facing hunger — Sudan is one of the worst humanitarian disasters in recent memory.”

The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child warned that “24 million children are at risk of a generational catastrophe.”

In Myanmar, the civil war raging since the junta overthrew the democratic government in February 2021 has seen some of the worst barbarism imaginable. UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Turk described the junta’s terror campaign against its opponents as “inhumanity in its vilest form,” including mass killings and “burning them alive, dismembering, raping, beheading, stabbing, bludgeoning, and using them as human shields against attacks and landmines.” Mutilated corpses and heads are displayed as warnings, including the bodies of defiled women with “foreign objects lodged in their bodies.”

Principled activists would be at least as vocal about these staggering atrocities, among many others, as they are about Israel. Instead, there is only widespread indifference and deafening silence. The vast majority of the people outraged by Israel’s supposed “genocide” in Gaza, it can be safely concluded, are not driven by principles at all. They are driven by hatred of Jews and Israel, pure and simple.

Oved Lobel is a policy analyst at the Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council (AIJAC).

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University of Toronto seeks injunction to end protest encampment over ‘harmful, discriminatory’ speech outlined in court filing

The University of Toronto is now seeking a court injunction to put and end to the encampment in King’s College Circle after the 8 a.m. deadline passed Monday morning—while unionized workers joined students, faculty and other protesters at a rainy morning rally. Shortly after the ultimatum hour, the university announced in a statement from UofT […]

The post University of Toronto seeks injunction to end protest encampment over ‘harmful, discriminatory’ speech outlined in court filing appeared first on The Canadian Jewish News.

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Monday morning saw the Toronto community and politicians showing support for the Chabad girls’ school struck by weekend gunfire

Mayor Olivia Chow was among those who addressed the crowd.

The post Monday morning saw the Toronto community and politicians showing support for the Chabad girls’ school struck by weekend gunfire appeared first on The Canadian Jewish News.

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‘A Call for Genocide’: South African Jews Blast Country’s President for Chanting ‘From the River to the Sea’

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa in Chatsworth, South Africa, May 18, 2024. Photo: REUTERS/Rogan Ward

South African Jewish leaders castigated their country’s president, Cyril Ramaphosa, for what they described as him calling for a “genocide” against Jews in Israel over the weekend.

Ramaphosa was speaking at an election rally in Johannesburg on Saturday when he deviated from his prepared speech to lead the crowd in in a chant of “From the River to the Sea, Palestine shall be free” — a popular slogan among anti-Israel activists that has been widely interpreted as a call for the destruction of the Jewish state, which is located between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea.

The address took place at FNB Stadium, where South Africa’s ruling African National Congress (ANC) held its final rally before South African elections on Wednesday. According to Politicsweb, a news website focused on South Africa, a call for the release of the “hostages held in Gaza” who Hamas terrorists kidnapped from southern Israel on Oct. 7 appeared in Ramaphosa’s prepared remarks but not in his final speech.

The South African Jewish community lambasted Ramaphosa for his remarks in a statement shared with The Algemeiner, expressing “its revulsion at the introduction of a call to exterminate Jews from their homeland” by the president.

“The president of the ruling ANC party and the head of state of a democratic country has called for the elimination of the only Jewish state in the culmination of the ANC president’s election speech made to thousands of ANC members and on national television,” said Wendy Kahn, national director of the South African Jewish Board of Deputies (SAJBD). “He uses the populist slogan ‘From the river to the sea, Palestine will be Free,’ which is widely regarded as a call to genocide of the Jewish people. The call to remove all Jews from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea equates to removing all Jews from Israel.”

Kahn compared the slogan with Hamas’ goal to “see Israel as ‘Judenfrei,’ or Jew free,” before noting that such an endpoint contradicts the South African government’s stated policy of supporting a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

“The chanting of this slogan by a head of state of a government that recurrently tries to express their commitment to a ‘two-state Solution’ as their policy on Israel and Palestine is hypocritical to the full,” the SAJBD said. “How does a sitting president reject his own government and own party’s international relations policy? This reconfirms our understanding that President Ramaphosa and his government are not looking for a peaceful solution to the tragic conflict, but rather to cause discord among fellow South Africans against its Jewish community.”

Kahn added, “The president’s contempt for South African Jewry is evident in this unscripted outburst at the rally which amounts to nothing more than Jew hatred. The SAJBD is reviewing its options for holding the president accountable for these hateful words.”

South Africa’s ANC government has been one of the harshest critics of Israel since Oct. 7, when Hamas terrorists launched the ongoing war in Gaza with their invasion of and massacre across southern Israeli communities.

South Africa temporarily withdrew its diplomats from Israel and shuttered its embassy in Tel Aviv shortly after the Oct. 7 Hamas pogrom, saying that the Pretoria government was “extremely concerned at the continued killing of children and innocent civilians” in Gaza.

In December, South Africa hosted two Hamas officials who attended a government-sponsored conference in solidarity with the Palestinians. One of the officials had been sanctioned by the US government for his role with the terrorist organization.

Earlier this month, members of South Africa’s Jewish community protested Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor’s recent call for students and university leaders to intensify the anti-Israel demonstrations that have engulfed college campuses across the US.

In January, the South African government failed in its bid to argue before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) that Israel’s defensive war in Gaza constituted a “genocide.” However, the top UN court last week ordered Israel to halt its military operations against the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas in the southern Gaza city of Rafah. The emergency ruling was part of South Africa’s ongoing case at the ICJ.

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