Palestinian Authority spokesman accuses al-Qaeda leader of being a “Zionist” (& other items)

April 20, 2014

Chelsea Clinton at her wedding


* Missouri Mayor says he “kind of agrees” with Kansas killer about Jews

* Stabbing poor cows in the eye in Gaza

* The meaning (or not) of Hillary’s Jewish grandchild


This dispatch contains a variety of items.You can comment on it here: Please also press “Like” on that page.



1. Media silent as another Ukrainian synagogue is firebombed
2. Kansans form an “angel wall” to protect funerals of murder victims
3. Missouri Mayor says he “kind of agrees” with Kansas killer about Jews
4. Palestinian Authority spokesman accuses al-Qaeda leader of being a “Zionist”
5. Media speculates on the “meaning” of Hillary Clinton’s “Jewish” grandchild
6. Italian police raid homes of prominent anti-Semites
7. Dutch student exposes post-war Amsterdam Holocaust scandal
8. Stabbing poor cows in the eye in Gaza
9. Thousands hold Jerusalem rally calling for the legalization of marijuana
10. “Echoes from a lost world”

[Notes below by Tom Gross]


Western media and politicians have made a great deal of fuss in recent days about leaflets threatening Ukrainian Jews. These are, it now turns out, probably the work of Ukrainian nationalists trying to discredit separatists in the majority Russian-speaking east of the country.

But, as I have noted before, Western media and politicians continue to all but ignore a series of actual attacks on Jewish persons and buildings elsewhere in Ukraine, likely to be the work of far-right Ukrainian nationalists, some of them represented in the new Western-backed government in Kiev. (Russian President Putin may be a thug but this shouldn’t serve as an excuse for Western media to fail to report properly that Putin is right when he points out that Ukraine is the only country in Europe with a Fascist party, Svoboda, taking part in government, and that Western governments last month agreed to provide that government with an enormous $27 billion in aid. Such aid should, in my opinion, have been conditional on Ukraine’s government not awarding ministerial positions to Svoboda – Svoboda holds five senior government posts.)

The latest attack on Jews in Ukraine came yesterday (at 2 am on Saturday morning, during the week-long Passover holiday) as several firebombs were thrown at the synagogue in the southern city of Nikolayev.

The attack was caught on the synagogue’s CCTV video system, and posted online by Yisroel Gotlieb, the son of the city’s Chief Rabbi, Sholom Gotlieb.

You can watch a four-minute video of it here:

In February, the Giymat Rosa Synagogue in Zaporizhia, southeast of Kiev was firebombed. A number of Jews have been stabbed in recent weeks in Kiev and elsewhere.



[This is a follow-up to the first item in last Monday’s dispatch: Three dead in pre-Passover shootings at Jewish buildings in Kansas City.]

After the Westboro Baptist Church, an extremist anti-Semitic religious hate group, said it would picket the funerals of the victims of last Sunday’s murders at two Jewish institutions in Kansas, over 2,000 people turned out to protect mourners at the funerals from the Westboro protesters.

Some of the counter-protestors wore Jewish phylacteries and prayer shawls in solidarity with Kansas’s Jewish community.

In a statement before the funerals, the Westboro Baptist Church said “God sent the shooter to punish the Jew-lovers for their vile sins.”

The church said that such funerals have become “pagan orgies where they worship these corpses instead of the Lord their God.” It called those who were murdered “faux-Christians” who are part of a “filthy community”.

(The church is also infamous for picketing the funerals of American servicemen killed in Afghanistan and Iraq, and for its extreme anti-homosexual statements.)

The 2,000 Kansan counter-protestors – organized through a Facebook page – formed an 80-block-long wall surrounding the funerals of Dr. William Corporon and his 14-year-old grandson Reat Underwood, two of the three victims of last Sunday’s shootings, to protect mourners from would-be disrupters.

The murderer, Frazier Glenn Cross, is a self-confessed “grand dragon” of the Carolina Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, and an admirer of anti-Zionist websites, in which he sometimes praised articles defaming Israel by extreme anti-Zionist Jews.


[I sent this item to some people a few days ago.]


The mayor of Marionville, Missouri, near where Frazier Glenn Miller used to live, said this week that he agreed with Miller’s views.

“He was always nice and friendly and respectful of elder people, you know, he respected his elders greatly,” Mayor Dan Clevenger told the local ABC TV affiliate KSPR. He added, laughing, “as long as they were the same color as him. [He was] very fair and honest.”

Mayor Clevenger then went on to say that he “kind of agreed with [Miller] on some things but I don’t like to express that too much.”

“What kind of things?” asked the KSPR reporter.

Clevenger replied: “There are some things that are going on in this country that are destroying us. We’ve got a false economy and some of those corporations are run by Jews,” he said. “The fact that the Federal Reserve prints up phony money and freely hands it out, I think that’s completely wrong. The people that run the Federal Reserve, they’re Jewish.”

This is not the first time Clevenger has publicly supported Miller’s anti-Semitism. KSPR unearthed a letter he sent a decade ago to the Aurora Advertiser, in which the mayor endorsed Miller.

“I am a friend of Frazier Miller helping to spread his warnings,” wrote Clevenger. “The Jew-run medical industry has succeeded in destroying the United State’s workforce… Made a few Jews rich by killin’ us off.”



The spokesman for Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah party has accused al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri of supporting “Zionism”.

He was responding to an audio recording published on Friday night on a Jihadi website, in which al-Zawahiri criticized Egyptian presidential candidate Abdel Fatah el-Sissi, American President Barack Obama, and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas.

“Abbas is a traitor who sold Palestine,” Zawahiri said, among other things.

The Israeli paper Yediot Ahronot notes today that Fatah spokesman Ahmad Assaf replied to Zawahiri on his Facebook yesterday: “Ayman Zawairi’s statements confirm once again this man’s involvement along with al-Qaeda in the Zionist project and scheming aimed at tearing apart the Arab and Islamic nations.”

“Since when has this hypocrite and his group cared about Palestinian cause? We haven’t seen one [terrorist] action carried out by them against the Israeli occupation,” he complained.



Since Chelsea Clinton and her Jewish husband Marc Mezvinsky announced last Thursday that they are expecting their first child, there has been considerable media speculation about whether Bill and Hillary Clinton’s first grandchild will be raised as a Jew.

Several Jewish publications said they welcomed the news that the child is likely to be raised with a Jewish identity – just as Chelsea’s wedding had many Jewish components.

But the orthodox newspaper, The Jewish Press, ran a headline: “Chelsea Clinton Pregnant With Non-Jewish Child,” adding that the pair was “effectively pruning away that 3,300 year old Jewish branch of the Mezvinsky family.”

Orthodox and Conservative Jews believe a child is only Jewish if the mother is Jewish (or the child converts) but Reform and Reconstructionist Jews are more flexible in their definitions.

The extreme-right media have also been covering the story. The leading anti-Semitic publication Stormfront (which incidentally often reproduces extreme left wing articles by Israel-bashing Jews) ran the headline: “Chelsea Clinton pregnant with jew spawn,” noted the JTA.

Tom Gross adds: There is a reasonable chance that Hillary will be America’s next president although I very much doubt that the way her grandchild is raised will make any difference to her Middle East policies.

In the past Hillary has on occasion appeared to sympathize with the Middle East’s only democracy, but at other times she has strongly criticized her.



Police and prosecutors in northern Italy have raided the homes of people associated with the anti-Semitic website “Holywar” and charged them with racial discrimination and incitement to harm a long list of well known Jews – and of those who have expressed sympathy for Jews, such as Pope Francis.

The Italian news agency ANSA noted that the website “depicted the pontiff in photoshopped images dressed as a bearded Orthodox Jew waving the Israeli flag with a swastika at the center of the Star of David.”

Other non-Jews targeted in letters, brochures, CDs and DVDs, because they supposedly expressed support for Jews include Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi and actor/director Roberto Benigni, who won an Oscar for his Holocaust-era film “Life Is Beautiful”.



Charlotte van den Berg, was a 20-year-old college student working part-time in Amsterdam’s city archives, when she discovered a trove of letters from Dutch Jewish Holocaust survivors complaining that the city authorities in Amsterdam were forcing them to pay municipal taxes and late payment fines with interest, on property seized and used by Dutch and German Nazis while they were being held in Nazi concentration camps.

The Associated Press reported two days ago:

How, the survivors asked, could they be on the hook for taxes due while Hitler’s regime was trying to exterminate them? A typical response was: “The base fees and the fines for late payment must be satisfied, regardless of whether a third party, legally empowered or not, has for some time held the title to the building.”

AP continued: “Following her discovery four years ago, Van den Berg waged a lonely fight against Amsterdam’s modern bureaucracy to have the travesty publicly recognized. Now, largely due to her efforts, Amsterdam officials have finally admitted the cover up and are considering compensating Holocaust survivors for the taxes and other obligations, including gas bills, they were forced to pay for homes that were occupied by Nazis or collaborators while the rightful owners were in hiding or awaiting death in the camps.”

Van den Berg and other students found 342 cases from 1947 in which the city demanded that returning Jews pay the taxes and penalty fees for getting behind in their payments.

Two Dutch newspapers, Het Parool and De Telegraaf, published leaked copies of the documents this week. Many of the homes were lived in by Dutch Nazi collaborators who left the bills unpaid and fled at the end of the war.

75 % of Dutch Jews were murdered in the Holocaust – the highest proportion of any country in Western Europe. And contrary to popular myth, far from putting up much resistance against the Nazis, the Dutch were particularly keen collaborators. Only 30,000 Dutch Jews survived the war.

Last year, Van der Berg heard that the documents were “one signature away” from being destroyed, as other documents from the era had been. In desperation, she said, she turned her findings over to the Amsterdam newspaper Het Parool.

A Dutch Jewish leader, Ronny Nafthaniel, this week called Van der Berg “an absolute hero”. “She pushed her bosses and all the civil servants around her to open up these files, even when they told her not to bother,” he said.



Animal welfare activists in Australia have released new video footage documenting alleged abuse of Australian cattle in Gaza, reports the Sydney Morning Herald.

“Animals Australia” says videos taken between February and last week show that live export regulations continue to be ignored with “horrific consequences” for Australian animals. [Warning, graphic footage:]

The organization says it has reported six incidents in Gaza to Australia’s Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry since the start of this year, “but that mistreatment in Gaza is continuing to occur on a nightly basis.”

One piece of footage shows a bull being stabbed in the eye.

“Animals Australia” says investigators shot the videos at the one Hamas government-approved slaughterhouse in Gaza, as well as a number of unauthorized abattoirs.

(Tom Gross adds:: It would be nice if Australian rights groups would also complain to Hamas about the regular use of live rocket fire used to indiscriminately target Jewish civilians in Israel.)



After thousands of people turned up for a pro-marijuana demonstration in Israel’s capital last night, that police had to seal off the park next to Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, to head off protestors.

The protesters were still blocking the entry road to the Knesset early this morning, forcing police to move in to try and clear the road, leading to clashes with police. 25 people were arrested in what was billed as the “Big Bong Night Protest.”

Many in Israel – which is some respects is one of the most liberal countries in the world – support the legalization of marijuana and say the police should stop wasting resources prosecuting people who use it. At least 11 members of the Knesset have publicly admitted taking cannabis in the past.


Among related dispatches, please see:

* UN chief admits bias against Israel (& Getting high beyond the Green Line) (August 17, 2013)

* Daily Muslim call to prayer on British public TV (& Israeli rabbis: Weed “can be kosher”) (July 3, 2013)

* Burgers, fries and marijuana (& Knesset members join the fun) (June 9, 2012)

* Israeli army to combat stress with cannabis (and other items) (August 6, 2004)



In a dispatch last week, I thanked Haaretz writer Gideon Levy for mentioning me in passing at the end of an article on his grandparents, but I failed to say anything more about the article. Several people wrote asking to know more. You can read it here:

In Hebrew.

In English.

[Notes above by Tom Gross]

All notes and summaries copyright © Tom Gross. All rights reserved.