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Hello! Tuesday is the MLB trade deadline, so the next few days will be like Hanukkah for people who love trade rumors and tweets with “BREAKING” in all caps.
Here’s a quick and nonexhaustive cheat-sheet on the important Jewish characters to keep an eye on:
Several of the teams expected to be active have Jewish executives: Jed Hoyer (Chicago Cubs), Chaim Bloom (Boston Red Sox), Steve Cohen (New York Mets), Sam Fuld (Philadelphia Phillies), Andrew Friedman (Los Angeles Dodgers) and Eve Rosenbaum (Baltimore Orioles).
Many of the top baseball reporters chronicling all the drama are also Jewish. Give a follow to ESPN’s Jeff Passan (to whom we wish a speedy recovery from his frightening back injury), The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal and the New York Post’s Jon Heyman, to name a few.
The pickleball fever has spread to Jewish summer camps and sports tournaments
Pickleball is the United States’ fastest-growing sport, and the Jewish world has come along for the noisy ride.
The popular racket sport will be played for the first time at the Pan American Maccabi Games in Buenos Aires this December. Maccabi USA’s Shane Carr said he got “tired of saying no” to the many requests that have poured in over recent years.
Pickleball has also taken off at Jewish camps across the country.
At Camp Avoda, a Jewish sports camp about 50 miles south of Boston, director Ronni Guttin estimated that about 40 of the camp’s 140 campers are playing pickleball. At Camp Bauercrest, A Jewish sports camp 40 miles north of Boston, they added more courts for this summer. And at Camp Ramah in California, it’s become “the sport of the summer,” according to program director Molly Auerbach.
ON TOP OF THE WORLD. Jewish fencer Eli Dershwitz became the first American man to win an individual sabre world championship this week in Milan, Italy. Dershwitz is a two-time Olympian and a Maccabiah gold medalist.
MEANT TO BE. New Washington Commanders owner Josh Harris opened up about the experience of buying his hometown NFL team this week, saying the opportunity was “bashert.” He also called himself a “man of faith.”
PAC-ING THEIR BAGS. UCLA and USC recently announced they would leave the Pac-12 Conference to join the Big Ten next year. As the Jewish Journal points out, that means the two LA schools will join the athletic conference representing the largest population of Jewish students, with more than 58,000 in total.
CRUSHING IT. Team Israel alum Spencer Horwitz was named International League Player of the Week after he slashed .536 with three home runs and nine runs batted in. Horwitz appeared in three games for the Toronto Blue Jays last month before being sent back down to Triple-A.
HISTORIC. A new exhibition at Vienna’s Jewish museum spotlights the history of the city’s Jewish football clubs. Austria Vienna, one of the country’s oldest football clubs, was once called “Judenklub,” or “Jewish club,” because of its rich Jewish connections.
HE’S GOING PLACES. Pitcher Harrison Cohen, who signed with the New York Yankees as an undrafted free agent last year, is making a name for himself in the minor leagues. In his first 20 relief appearances this season in High-A, Cohen is 2-1 with a 2.81 earned run average.
THE FALL OF THE ‘ROMAN EMPIRE.’ Early on in Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Jewish oligarch Roman Abramovich was in the spotlight, as countries placed sanctions on him and he sold his Premier League club Chelsea. The Athletic takes a deep dive on what the billionaire has been up to since.
Jews in sports to watch this weekend
Abby Meyers is back with the WNBA’s Washington Mystics. They’re in action tonight at 8 p.m. ET against the Dallas Wings — the team that originally drafted Meyers — and Sunday at 3 p.m. ET against the Atlanta Dream.
Dean Kremer, who has reached double-digit wins for the first time in his career, takes the mound for the Baltimore Orioles against Harrison Bader and the New York Yankees Sunday at 7:10 p.m. ET. Rookie Zack Gelof and the Oakland A’s face Jake Bird and the Colorado Rockies this weekend, while Joc Pederson and the San Francisco Giants host Richard Bleier and the Boston Red Sox. Gelof has three steals and four doubles in his first 11 games in the big leagues.
Steve Birnbaum, a defender and the captain of D.C. United, leads his team against the Mexican Liga MX Club Universidad Nacional, or UNAM, Saturday at 9 p.m. ET. It’s part of the joint Leagues Cup involving the MLS and La Liga. Daniel Edelman and the NY Red Bulls play the Mexican club Atlético San Luis Sunday at 7:30 p.m. ET.
David Lipsky is in Minnesota this weekend for the 3M Open. Max Homa and Ben Silverman are off this weekend, but both are coming off impressive tournaments last week: Homa finished 10th at Open Championship, his first career top-10 finish in a major tournament, and Silverman tied for second place at the Price Cutter Charity Championship in Missouri.
Aston Martin driver Lance Stroll picked up another point with his 10th-place finish at last weekend’s Hungarian Grand Prix. The Belgian Grand Prix is Sunday at 9 a.m. ET on ESPN.
Jews down under
After getting a visit from Jewish second gentleman Doug Emhoff, the U.S. Women’s National Team was joined by Jewish Secretary of State Antony Blinken this week in New Zealand. The U.S. team has one win and one draw so far in the World Cup.
The post The Jewish Sport Report: Why this sport is all the rage at Jewish summer camp appeared first on Jewish Telegraphic Agency.
Gallant: Seizing Internal Hamas Documents Brings Hostage Deal Closer
i24 News – Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant provided a review to fellow ministers of weapons and documents belonging to Hamas, which were collected by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) Document and Technical Means Collection Unit (Amshat) operating in the Gaza Strip.
“This morning we are hosting the government meeting at the IDF, in the defense establishment, to show the ministers exactly how we are achieving and deepening our achievements and what is coming out of the Gaza Strip,” Gallant explained.
“You can see a small part of the things here – missiles, explosive charges, mines, a great many maps, means of communication, documents, computers, drives, all these things which the IDF uses now on as intelligence, and not only that,” the defense minister continued.
“These demonstrate that we penetrated into the heart of the most sensitive places of Hamas and use their intelligence against them,” Gallant described the process of attaining the documents and weapons, hinting at some of the locations from where it was found.
“We are using their weapons against them, detonating them in the field, all this leads to the consequence of deepening and penetrating the heart of Hamas’ capabilities,” the defense minister said.
“The more we deepen our operations, the closer we get to a realistic deal in order to return the hostages,” Gallant concluded.
The post Gallant: Seizing Internal Hamas Documents Brings Hostage Deal Closer first appeared on Algemeiner.com.
UNRWA Chief Urged to Resign After ‘Absurd’ Pledge of Ignorance
i24 News – Israeli diplomatic leaders called for the resignation of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) Commissioner-General, Philippe Lazzarini, following denial of knowing about a Hamas data center under the agency’s headquarters in Gaza.
The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) revealed on Saturday night that Hamas built a vast network of tunnels under the UNRWA headquarters, with a base directly underneath that was even hooked up to its grid.
“The exposure of UNRWA’s Gaza headquarters’ deep involvement with Hamas, including its use for terror activities and as an access point to terror tunnels, requires immediate action,” the Israeli foreign minister, Israel Katz, posted on X.
“Philippe Lazzarini’s claim of unawareness is not only absurd but also an affront to common sense. His prompt resignation is imperative,” Katz concluded.
Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations, Gilad Erdan, also called for the UNRWA Commissioner-General to resign, responding “it’s not that you didn’t know, it’s that you didn’t WANT to know.”
“We exposed terror tunnels under UNRWA schools and supplied evidence that Hamas’ exploits UNRWA. We implored you to carry out a comprehensive search of all UNRWA facilities in Gaza. But not only did you refuse, you chose to stick your head in the sand,” Erdan added in a detailed post on X.
.@UNLazzarini it’s not that you didn’t know, it’s that you didn’t WANT to know. We exposed terror tunnels under UNRWA schools and supplied evidence that Hamas’ exploits UNRWA. We implored you to carry out a comprehensive search of all UNRWA facilities in Gaza. But not only did… https://t.co/bJsD66OwoO
— Ambassador Gilad Erdan גלעד ארדן (@giladerdan1) February 10, 2024
“Take responsibility and resign today!” the Israeli ambassador said, “Every day we find more proof that in Gaza the UN=Hamas and vice versa. Anything the UN says or claims about Gaza cannot be trusted.”
The post UNRWA Chief Urged to Resign After ‘Absurd’ Pledge of Ignorance first appeared on Algemeiner.com.
Preparing for the Next ICJ Debacle
JNS.org – In the theater of the absurd commonly known as the International Court of Justice, judges are again preparing to ignore history and facts. Having weaponized the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide against the Jewish state, the judges are now preparing to hear oral arguments on the next oxymoron: The “legal consequences” of the “Israeli occupation” of “Palestinian territory.”
The glaring problem with this is that there is no such entity as the “Palestinian territories.” The term is an invented one used to define areas allocated by the international community to the Jewish state, which were then illegally invaded by Egypt and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. Any discussion anchored on this false terminology should immediately be ignored and scorned.
In December 2022, the United Nations General Assembly, prompted by the Palestinian Authority, adopted a resolution to request from the ICJ an advisory opinion on the following question:
“Considering the rules and principles of international law, including the Charter of the United Nations, international humanitarian law, international human rights law, relevant resolutions of the Security Council, the General Assembly, and the Human Rights Council, and the advisory opinion of the Court of July 9, 2004:
“a) What are the legal consequences arising from the ongoing violation by Israel of the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination, from its prolonged occupation, settlement, and annexation of the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including measures aimed at altering the demographic composition, character, and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem, and from its adoption of related discriminatory legislation and measures?
“b) How do the policies and practices of Israel referred to in paragraph 18 (a) above affect the legal status of the occupation, and what are the legal consequences that arise for all States and the United Nations from this status?”
Following the request, the ICJ set a July 25, 2023 deadline for initial written statements to be submitted, with responses to be submitted by Oct. 25, 2023 and oral arguments to be made starting Feb. 19, 2024.
The underlying assumption of this debacle is that Israel is in some way “occupying” “Palestinian territory.” But is that really the case?
In reality, never in history has an independent country called “Palestine” ever existed.
In reality, the area the UNGA claims and has asked the ICJ to consider as “Palestinian territory” was controlled for 400 years by the Ottoman Empire.
In reality, after World War I, the international community repeatedly allocated the entire area from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea, from Lebanon to the Red Sea, for the sole purpose of reconstituting the Jewish homeland.
In reality, the 1923 division of the geographical area called “Palestine” into two separate areas, one to be called the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and the other remaining Jewish Palestine, was the real “two-state solution.”
In reality, in 1947, the United Nations offered the Arabs an opportunity to create another Arab country to the west of the Jordan River alongside Israel, but the Arabs refused. Instead, five Arab armies attacked the nascent Jewish state with the stated and express goal of throwing the Jews into the sea.
From 1948 to 1967, Egypt controlled the Gaza Strip and Jordan controlled Judea and Samaria, which it renamed “The West Bank.” During that time, no U.N. resolution of the General Assembly or the Security Council demanded that Egypt and Jordan retreat and desist from occupying those areas. No such request was made of Jordan since Jordan saw Palestine as an integral part of Jordan.
In reality, even U.N. Security Council Resolution 242, from November 1967, does not mention, even once, the notion of occupied “Palestinian” territory.
In fact, the idea that a State of Palestine ever existed and that Israel is occupying “Palestinian territory” seems to prove the billboard advertisement that “Palestine” is the only country in the world that did not exist before it was “occupied.”
Sadly, as the judges demonstrated with their shameful decision on the false claim of South Africa against Israel when it comes to the Jewish state, history, facts and the truth are just not relevant.
Originally published by The Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs.