Jordanian MPs hold moment of silence for synagogue terrorists, UN teacher calls the attack “wonderful”

November 22, 2014

UNRWA school director Naief al-Hattab, who called this week’s Jerusalem synagogue atrocity “wonderful”, smiles with UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon in Gaza after just shaking Ban’s hand. The girls’ section of his school received substantial U.S. government funding in 2012.


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1. Video: Berkeley students: Israel, not ISIS, is the problem
2. Jordanian MPs hold moment of silence for synagogue terrorists
3. A Druze hero
4. UN teachers praise Jerusalem synagogue massacre
5. Kerry blames Palestinian leadership: So NYT leaves it out
6. What the BBC doesn’t show
7. Israeli apartheid? Attacker’s sister employed as social worker by Jerusalem Municipality
8. UK taxpayer finances Ashrawi’s propaganda
9. Israel to issue gay-friendly ID cards for children of same-sex couples
10. Disney denies Egyptian minister’s Disneyworld claims
11. Saudi husband tells his bride he wants a divorce during their wedding
12. Rabbi Isaac Neuman


[Notes by Tom Gross]

For those who haven’t seen it yet, the video below, filmed last Monday at the university of Berkeley in California, has gone viral on the Internet. In it, a student first waves the ISIS (Islamic State) flag and shouts support for ISIS. No student objects (apart from one who tells him to stop smoking on campus). Then he switches the ISIS flag for the flag of the Jewish state of Israel, and the insults starts to fly.



Members of the Jordanian parliament held a moment of silence and read Koranic verses aloud on Wednesday in praise of the two Palestinian terrorists who butchered to death four Jews and one Druze policeman who tried to save them, in the attack at a West Jerusalem synagogue on Tuesday. As noted in a previous dispatch, three of the murdered Jews were American citizens and the other was British, but to the best of my knowledge, neither the American nor British governments have expressed condemnation of the Jordanian parliament for praising the ISIS-like butchery practiced on their Jewish citizens.

One Jordanian MP read the al-Fatiha verse from the first chapter of the Quran in order to (as he told other parliamentarians who bowed their heads during the parliamentary session in respect for the killers) “glorify their pure souls and the souls of all the martyrs in the Arab and Muslim nations”.

By contrast, the Jordanian prime minister condemned the attack.



Thousands of Jewish Israelis including the president of the state of Israel, Reuven Rivlin, joined thousands of Druze Israelis at the funeral of Zidan Saif, the Druze policeman who succumbed to his wounds hours after trying to save Jewish worshippers at the synagogue by forcing himself in between the terrorists and the victims. An anonymous donor paid for free bus travel so impoverished members of Israel’s ultra-orthodox community could travel to the Druze village in the Galilee for the funeral.

Saif, 30, was hacked and then shot in the head by the two terrorists. He is a survived by a wife and a 4-month-old baby girl. His father described his son as “a true hero”.



In the latest of a long series of scandals to hit the UN agency UNRWA, the director of UNRWA’s Zaitoun Elementary Boys school, Naief al-Hattab, along with other UN school teachers, praised the synagogue atrocity. He called it “wonderful” on his Facebook page.

UNRWA is in many respects a highly corrupted organization which helps to perpetuate the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. It is largely funded by European and American taxpayers. Its chief spokesman, employed to smooth over criticism (including the storing of weapons in its schools) is former BBC producer and foreign correspondent Chris Gunness. Gunness remains on close terms with his former colleague, the controversial BBC chief Middle East correspondent Jeremy Bowen.

(In his coverage of the Jerusalem massacre, Bowen thought it important to mention “a Palestinian bus driver was killed yesterday as well” even though it had already been established the day before that that death was a suicide about a personal matter and bore no relation to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Meanwhile, the BBC’s Ben Brown reported that the synagogue was in “East Jerusalem” as if to emphasize that the murders might have been in some way legitimate. The synagogue was in fact on the far west of Jerusalem.)

Naief al-Hattab, director of UNRWA’s Zaitoun Elementary School has previously posted other statements and images on Facebook and elsewhere, including those encouraging children to murder Israelis.

This UNRWA report reveals that the girls’ branch of the Zaitoun Elementary School was “completed in 2012 … with funding from the United States of America.”

The well-known anonymous blogger Elder of Ziyon has compiled a whole series of incidences of UNRWA employees praising this week’s Jerusalem massacre and other previous attacks, including one teacher who posted a celebratory picture of Adolf Hitler on his Facebook page last year.

The New York Times continues to fail to report properly, if at all, on this kind of thing.


The attacked synagogue in west Jerusalem re-opened 24 hours after the attack. Less Orthodox Jews (such as centrist Member of the Knesset Dov Lipman from the Yesh Atid party) joined ultra-orthodox Jews there as a mark of solidarity.



The New York Times is being criticized for failing to report on some versions of its stories, on Secretary of State John Kerry’s unusually unequivocal statement saying that Palestinian incitement was directly responsible for the Jerusalem massacre. He said that the murders were “a pure result of incitement” by Palestinian Authority leaders during the days before, to attack Israelis.

This was one of the most blunt statements made in recent years by a senior U.S. official against the Palestinian leadership. But according to reports in the U.S., the domestic American edition of the New York Times, which devotes so much space day after day criticizing Israel, decided to omit it from its print report the day after the massacre, and remove it from its website stories during the day of the massacre having initially posted it.

Kerry said “people who had come to worship God in the sanctuary of a synagogue were hatcheted and hacked and murdered in that holy place in an act of pure terror and senseless brutality and murder. I call on the Palestinian leadership at every single level to condemn this in the most powerful terms… this kind of act, which is a pure result of incitement of calls for days of rage, of just an irresponsibility, is unacceptable.”



In two dispatches earlier this week, I spoke of some of the mis-coverage of this attack on the BBC and CNN. For a very different report, one that more accurately shows what actually happened, here is Megan Kelly from Fox News:


Kelly is shocked by the scenes of celebration by Palestinians handing out sweets and baking cakes in honor of the murderers and dancing with axes and meat cleavers in the streets. Why isn’t the BBC reporting this?


Britain’s Channel 4 had even worse coverage than the BBC, using various pieces of twisted information to try and justify the massacre, much as recently resigned Conservative Cabinet Minister Baroness Warsi also did in a series of astonishingly tasteless tweets. Various British Jews have called on Warsi to be prosecuted under Britain’s anti-race hatred laws.

And here is how CBC in Canada reported the massacre of Jews:


Here is a 3 minute-clip of the one of the media interviews I gave concerning press coverage of the attack:



So much for allegations of “Israeli apartheid”. The sister of one of the terrorists who perpetrated the massacre is employed by the Jerusalem municipality as a social worker. She has taken several days off in order to be with her family during the mourning period.

The Jerusalem municipality said she “is an outstanding social worker. We are not aware that the worker ever expressed any support for the actions of her family.”


Meanwhile, attacks on Jews continue, largely unreported in western media. For example, two Jewish seminary students were viciously attacked on their way to the Sabbath dinner in Jerusalem last night. They were punched and hit with stones, metal rods and wooden planks studded with nails near the Beit Orot seminary in Jerusalem’s Mount of Olives, one of Judaism’s most holy sites.

Hours after the synagogue massage on Tuesday, five Palestinians surrounded Daniel Bronstein, sprayed pepper spray in his eyes, and “beat him senseless” according to paramedics who treated him.


The car of a Muslim leader who condemned the Jerusalem terror attack was vandalized yesterday. The car’s hood was doused with acid, and death threats were made to his family by suspected Palestinian extremists. Samir Assi, the Imam of Acre’s Al-Jazzar Mosque, had taken part in an interfaith meeting on Wednesday outside the Jerusalem synagogue where five people were murdered.


There were also many Palestinian cartoons praising the massacre, justifying it as supposedly being in :”defense” of the Al-Aqsa mosque, which no one has in fact attacked in recent times:



There have been many articles in the Israeli media this week criticizing Britain for financing for anti-Israeli invective.

Among them it was revealed that the British taxpayer, via DFID and the British Council, is the largest single funder of Hanan Ashrawi’s personal NGO, providing $733,828 – the bulk of her annual budget.

One journalist wrote: “The UK is certainly getting its money’s worth. Here is her response to Tuesday’s synagogue killings to a visiting delegation of U.S. journalists from the Foundation for Middle East Peace: ‘With Israel’s expansion of its illegal settlement enterprise in and around Jerusalem, the targeting of the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound and its worshipers, Israeli settler violence and extremism, the lynching and killing of innocent Palestinians, Israel’s most recent horrific war in Gaza, the demolition of Palestinian houses, the eviction of Palestinians from their homes, and the revocation of Palestinian IDs, among other violations, Israel is deliberately provoking grave violence, instability and chaos and inciting a holy war throughout an already-volatile region.”

The governments of America, Norway, Ireland as well as the UN, were also major donors to Ashrawi, who was invited on by CNN to slam Israel straight after the massacre. Video and other information More here.



In what is believed may be a world first among those countries whose citizens have ID cards, the Israeli government is to issue new ID cards for the children of same-sex couples. The card will allow them to state that they have two fathers or two mothers, regardless of whether they are the biological parent or not.

The Israeli Interior Ministry has, since 2006, allowed non-registered same-sex parents to adopt their partner’s child, but the ID cards didn’t until now formally state both parents were fathers, or mothers.

Israel was one of the first countries in the world to pay full spousal benefits to the same-sex partners of its diplomats or army officers, and international gay rights campaigners have long praised Israel for its progressive policies on homosexual rights.



The Walt Disney Company has denied a statement by Egypt’s Investment Minister that the company is planning to build a Disney amusement park in Egypt.

“While Egypt is an attractive market, we have no plans for the region at this time,” a Disney spokesperson told the Egyptian paper Al-Ahram.

On Tuesday, Egypt’s investment minister Ashraf Salman had announced, “There are discussions going on between Disney International to build in Egypt its first Disney Park in the Middle East, similar to EuroDisney France.”

He added: “Having a Disney in Egypt at the moment sends a message to the world and to foreign investors that Egypt is safe and stable.”

Tourism to Egypt has collapsed during the last three years of political turmoil.

As part of its anti-terrorism policy following a series of deadly terrorist attacks in Sinai which it believes may have been launched from Gaza, Egypt has been carrying out mass evictions of Palestinians in the Sinai and house demolitions of around 1000 Palestinian homes in recent weeks, with hardly any protest from international “pro-Palestinian” human rights groups or coverage in the international media.


In a previous dispatch some years ago, I noted that Hamas had already made a Disney-style show. The only difference between “the wonderful world of Disney” and that show is that “Farfour” (Hamas’ version of Mickey Mouse) is used to promote radical Islamism among children and is then “martyred” in the final episode. You can watch it here:



A Saudi husband told his bride he wanted a divorce during their wedding in the town of Medina after seeing her face for the first time when the photographer asked them to pose for pictures. The couple had not met face to face before the ceremony. When she lifted her veil to smile for the photo, the groom recoiled in disgust according to witnesses quoted by the Saudi paper Okaz. The husband was much criticized by Saudis on social media, who said the woman would find a better man than him.

Another Saudi man divorced his wife last week on the grounds that she didn’t reply to his WhatsApp message, the Gulf News reported.



Rabbi Isaac Neuman, one of the oldest recipients of these dispatches, passed away on Tuesday in Illinois.

The friend of his, a former journalist, who added him to this email list, wrote as follows:

My beloved childhood rabbi, Isaac Neuman, passed away yesterday at the age of 91. He was only 17 when the Nazis invaded Poland, but he survived nine concentration camps, including Auschwitz. Though he lost his entire family to the Holocaust, he came to America and dedicated his life to building bridges with other faiths. He bore the number the Nazis tattooed on his left forearm for the rest of his life, and it made an indelible impression on me as a child, as it did my children when I took them to visit him.

More here.

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