Many British taxpayers, struggling to pay their family’s way through a recession, might rightly wonder why their money is going to pay as much as £2,000 a month to people serving the longest sentences—those who have targeted Israeli buses and other civilian targets with suicide bombers, for instance. That is higher than the average wage in nearly all of Britain.
• Canada called for the ouster of UN official Richard Falk, who called for a boycott of companies that have dealings with Israeli settlements. Falk is the UN’s special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories. Details at the National Post. Falk has accused Israel of ethnic cleansing, war crimes, apartheid, and said that 9/11 was “an inside job” for good measure.
• Nice profile of Kasim Hafeez, a British Muslim of Pakistani descent “travels the world explaining how and why he has gone from a hater to a lover of the Jewish people and the Jewish state.” The Calgary Herald caught up with Hafeez, now making a series of speaking appearances across Canada:
At the Saudi airport, while waiting in line for passport control, he was sent to the back of the line five times to make way for Arab Muslims, who are considered superior to South Asian Muslims: “I’ve never experienced the level of racism like I did in Saudi Arabia.”
By contrast, in Israel, while expecting to find apartheid signs directing Muslims to wait for one bus or another, what Hafeez saw instead were Muslims, Jews and Christians all going about their lives in harmony.
“Here’s a state that’s constantly called an enemy of Islam, yet Muslims have more rights in Israel than they have anywhere else in the Middle East,” he said.
• Avraham Burg appeared on CNN discussing Israeli democracy (part 1) with Christiane Amanpour. In part 2, Burg talked about the Holocaust’s influence on Israel, and about the inevitability of the one-state solution.
Iranian Atomic Urgency
• NY Times: Iran’s nearly finished its underground enrichment plant:
The installation of the last of nearly 3,000 centrifuges at a site called Fordo, deep under a mountain inside a military base near the holy city of Qum, puts Iran closer to being able to build a nuclear weapon, or come up to the edge, if its leaders ultimately decide to proceed.
• The Iranian opposition launched Raha, a London-based TV station. But with Tehran blocking signals and controlling the internet, it’s the proverbial tree that falls in the forest. Does it make a sound? Details at Sky News.
• The US is blocking the Assad regime’s efforts to expand its chemical weapons stockpile, according to Wired:
Perhaps his chemical precursors are relatively unstable, and he needs fresh supplies; perhaps this is a late shopping spree before the international noose tightens completely; perhaps he wants to send a warning to potential adversaries in Jerusalem and Washington.
• AP reports that a UN human rights panel wants unrestricted access to Syria. But Sergio Pinheiro, the Brazilian diplomat who leads the inquiry, has had to suffice with interviewing refugees outside Syria. This looks like a job for Judge Richard Goldstone . . .
Rest O’ the Roundup
• Ethiopia’s remaining Falash Mura are going to be airlifted to Israel in a series of monthly flights. According to the Times of Israel, Operation Doves Wings’ kicks off tomorrow with the arrival of 240 Ethiopian Jews at Ben Gurion Airport.
• Worth reading at the NY Times: Professor Colin Shindler looks at the European left’s inability to address anti-Semitism.
• Argentina‘s National Library cancelled an anti-Israel event.
For more, see the previous Israel Daily News Stream.
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