Tag Archive for Jewish World

Re-elected Greek mayor dawns yellow Star of David in protest against fascism

Yiannis Boutaris wore a ‘Jewish’ badge at his swearing-in ceremony in response to a Golden Dawn lawmaker from the far-right party also being on the city’s municipal council.

By Christine Pirovolakis


DPA – The mayor of the northern Greek port city of Thessaloniki wore a yellow Star of David, similar to the ones worn by Jews rounded up in the city during WWII, to his swearing-in ceremony on Thursday in protest against fascism.

Thessaloniki Mayor Yiannis Boutaris (center) sports a replica Nazi concentration camp Star of David.

Thessaloniki Mayor Yiannis Boutaris (center) sports a replica Nazi concentration camp Star of David after his swearing-in ceremony for another five-year term in the northern port city.-

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Do you have Jewish roots? – New ‘home’ genetics kits could identify Jewish past

New home genetic tests kit could deliver answers for those who feel an affinity for Jews and closeness to Israel.


Millions of people around the world may discover Jewish roots with the increasing availability of home genetics tests and concurrent growth in popularity of genealogical websites, according to a Jerusalem think tank.

Ethiopian Jews

Uri Perednik poses with Ethiopian Jews in Addis Ababa. – Photo: Courtesy

The Jewish People Policy Institute, an independent body founded by the Jewish Agency in 2002, focused on Jewish continuity that conducted research regarding this issue, announced on Wednesday that earlier this summer it had recommended to the government, as well as Diaspora communities that they work to connect with people discovering that they have Jewish ties. Continue Reading »

Australian judge blocks Palestinian protest against Israeli Film Festival in Sydney

New South Wales Supreme Court Judge ruled pro-Palestinian activists will be unable to protest outside the Israeli Film Festival in Sydney.



A pro-Palestinian protest at the opening night of the Israeli Film Festival in Sydney will not go ahead, a judge ruled. Protesters responded that they will “not be silenced.”

A pro-Gaza rally in Sydney, Australia, July 20, 2014

A pro-Gaza rally in Sydney, Australia, July 20, 2014. – Photo: Reuters

New South Wales Supreme Court Judge Peter Hidden ruled Wednesday in favor of the police, who had applied to the court to block the planned protest on Thursday night because it would disrupt inner-city traffic during a peak hour.

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Paris synagogue firebombed as pro-Palestine mob chant ‘death to the Jews’

Anti-Semitic violence rises throughout Western Europe as Israel’s defensive operation in Gaza intensifies.



A firebomb was hurled at a synagogue near Paris, part of a string of anti-Semitic incidents in Western Europe coinciding with Israel’s assault on Hamas in Gaza.

Anti-Israel protest

Demonstrators protesting in Paris to denounce the Israeli military offensive in the Gaza Strip, July 11, 2014. – Photo: AFP

The firebomb went off Friday night at the entrance to the synagogue of Aulnay-sous-Bois, a northeastern suburb of the French capital, according to the National Bureau for Vigilance Against Anti-Semitism, or BNVCA. No one was hurt and the fire resulted in minor damage, Le Monde reported.

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Swedish man severely beaten with iron pipes for displaying Israeli flag by window

After thorough investigation, local Police suspect that the attack against the 38-year-old, in the Swedish city of Malmö, was a hate crime, reported The Local, Sweden’s English language website.

By and


A man was severely assaulted in the Swedish city of Malmö on Sunday night after hanging an Israeli flag out of his window, according to local media reports.

A screenshot of the flag hung in Malmo from The Local website.

Broken window & flag hung in Malmo – Screenshot from The Local website.

Police suspect that the attack against the 38-year-old was a hate crime, The Local website reported. “Our initial evaluation is that this is a hate crime,” policewoman Marie Keismar said.

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Tehran University professor/cleric: “Jews are sorcerers”

A Tehran University professor, on an Iranian state TV broadcast, discusses Judaism and the Jewish Sorcerers & Genies.


An Iranian cleric has accused Jews of being skilled sorcerers and said that Israel uses their power against Iran.


YouTube Screenshot of Iranian cleric Valiollah Naghipourfar on state TV.

The Tehran University professor, who was recently interviewed on Iran’s state broadcaster, said that Jews use sorcery for espionage. Valiollah Naghipourfar talked about jinns, or genies, according to The Daily Beast.

“Can jinns be put to use in intelligence gathering?” the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting presenter asks the professor in the video, which was uploaded to YouTube on July 2.

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Holocaust memorial in Athens desecrated with anti-Semitic graffiti

The graffiti included threats that a synagogue in Athens would be destroyed.



Anti-Semitic graffiti has been scrawled on the Holocaust memorial in Athens, including threats against the Jewish community.

Holocaust memorial in Athens, Greece.

Holocaust memorial in Athens, Greece. – Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Police have opened an investigation into Friday’s vandalism, according to Victor Eliezer, the secretary general of the Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece.

The graffiti included a purported quote from the Talmud saying that Jews who convert should be put to death, and threats that the synagogue in Athens would be destroyed.

“Regretfully, 70 years after the end of World War II, which left millions of victims of bigotry, racism, Nazism and anti-Semitism behind, there are people beyond redemption aiming at terrorizing us by molesting the memory of our brothers, victims of the Holocaust,” said a statement from the Jewish community, issued Monday.

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Hebrew University historian concludes: Jews are not descendants of Khazars

New study by professor of history at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem finds no evidence that European Ashkenazi Jews are the descendants of Khazars, nor that Khazar subjects in the medieval kingdom converted to Judaism en masse. Past conclusions to the contrary, have no foundations in history.


The claim that today’s Ashkenazi Jews are descended from Khazars who converted in the Middle Ages is a myth, according to new research by a Hebrew University historian.

Khazars - AP

The ruins of an 11th-12th century house in Itil, a Silk Road city that served as the Khazar capital, in July 2005.

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Catherine Zeta Jones joins Michael Douglas in Israel, for son’s Bar-Mitzvah

The Douglas family booked the King David Hotel’s presidential suite, ahead of touring Jerusalem and family’s celebration at the Western Wall plaza.


Jerusalem was star struck over the weekend, as Hollywood couple Catherine Zeta Jones and Michael Douglas arrived Thursday in Israel, local media reported.

Actress Catherine Zeta Jones and actor Michael Douglas in New York, April 21, 2014.

Actress Catherine Zeta Jones and actor Michael Douglas in New York, April 21, 2014. – Photo: Reuters

The glamorous duo brought their children, too. Indeed, the purpose of their under-the-radar visit to the holy land was part of the bar-mitzvah celebrations for their first-born, Dylan Michael.

Mother Catherine, who comes from Welsh and Irish stock, has toyed in the past with the possibility of converting to Judaism, but has yet to go through with it, according to The Forward.

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Postponed ‘Jews in Israel’ exhibit to finally open at UNESCO

The Jewish people’s narrative finally to be displayed: A 3.5 millennia relationship to the Holy Land, and that’s the narrative that the Arab League didn’t want the world to know about.



An exhibition on the Jewish presence in the land of Israel that had been canceled due to pressure from Arab states will open at UNESCO headquarters in Paris.

The exhibit at UNESCO headquarters in Paris just needed to be installed – Jan.2014

“Book, People, Land — The 3,500-Year Relationship of the Jewish People With the Holy Land,” a joint exhibition of the Simon Wiesenthal Center and the cultural arm of the United Nations, will open Wednesday.

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Chicago 8th-graders suspended for online anti-Semitic bullying


The suspended students from Ogden Int’l School of Chicago were identified as the ringleaders & participants in the reported anti-Semitic harassment of a 14 yr-old student.




Several eighth-graders at a Chicago public school were suspended as part of an investigation of anti-Semitic bullying via the online game “Clash of Clans.”

Clash of Clans.

The online game

The suspended students from Ogden International School of Chicago were identified as ringleaders and participants in the reported harassment of a 14-year-old Jewish student. Chicago Public Schools spokesman Joel Hood told the Chicago Sun-Times that they were suspended for one to three days. Continue Reading »

SEEKING: Ride to the Moon for One Torah


The Israel based ‘Torah on the Moon’ project has commissioned the European Space Agency to carry a special capsule designed to protect the Torah for at least 10,000 years.



The European Space Agency has been commissioned to participate in a project to carry a Torah scroll to the moon, according to New Scientist magazine.

Scribe completes Torah scroll

An ultra-Orthodox scribe completing a Torah scroll. Combining all five books together revolutionized Hebrew printing. – Photo: AP

The commission, which was confirmed by the agency’s engineering arm in Noordwijk, the Netherlands, came from a Tel Aviv-based group called, appropriately, the Torah on the Moon project.

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Assad forces destroy Syria’s oldest Synagogue

The more than 400 yr-old Eliyahu Hanabi Synagogue was hit by a mortar shell in 2013. After Israel was established, the building was used as a school for Palestinian refugees.



A historic synagogue on the outskirts of Damascus was destroyed amid fighting in Syria’s civil war over the weekend.

Damascus synagogue destroyed

A sign at the entrance of the Damascus synagogue, taken from a Youtube video.

Opposition leaders said Syrian army forces flattened the more than 400-year-old Eliyahu Hanabi Synagogue in an attack — part of a months-long bombardment of the suburb of Jobar — and also may have destroyed thousands of Jewish artifacts, The Daily Beast reported. Continue Reading »

LA’s children of Holocaust survivors say ‘Never Again’ — with a loaded gun

Doris Wise Montrose, president of the Children of Jewish Holocaust Survivors warns that anti-Semitism is rising again, “We talk about defending ourselves, but we have to do something aside from sharing email articles.”



LOS ANGELES (JTA) — It’s a sunny morning in Southern California and Lea Rosenfeld, a soft-spoken, bespectacled woman who looks like a Jewish grandmother, squares her feet, faces her target and squeezes off five shots with a handgun.

Itamar Gelbman helps Lea Rosenfeld aim at the target during a shooting class for Children of Jewish Holocaust Survivors in Los Angeles. (Anthony Weiss)

Itamar Gelbman helps Lea Rosenfeld aim at the target during a shooting class for Children of Jewish Holocaust Survivors in Los Angeles. – Photo: Anthony Weiss

All of them miss.

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California school asks students: Was Holocaust real?


8th-graders were asked to write for a homework assignment, an essay on if the Holocaust was an actual historical event or a political scheme designed to influence public emotion.

By Reuters


A California school district is under fire after eighth-graders were given an assignment to write an essay explaining whether they believed the Holocaust was a real historical event or a political scheme to influence public emotion and gain.

Auschwitz: Essay on whether it really happened.

A new program for Holocaust studies at the University of Haifa is allowing students to shine a light on their families’ own personal histories. – Photo: AP

“It was an error,” Syeda Jafri, spokesperson of the Rialto Unified School District near Los Angeles, said on Monday.

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