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Monday, April 14, 2014

Chag Sameach!

Wishing a Chag Sameach to my readers!

I will not be blogging until Wednesday night/Thursday morning.

Here is some previous original EoZ artwork from previous Passovers, usually created in less than a half hour:




Grooming Palestinian Arab schoolgirls for terror

From Palestinian Media Watch:


Girl to PA TV about her goal in life:
"My life's ambition is to reach the level that the Martyr fighter Dalal Mughrabi reached..."

The purpose of the PA TV program was explained by the TV host:
"Today we are in the Dalal Mughrabi School [in Gaza], to get to know the Palestinian Martyr and fighter..."

Other children and teachers in the school were also interviewed.

Student at the school:
"Dalal Mughrabi is a great leader, who raised more and more and worked for the Palestinian cause to protect the pure land of the homeland, by defending Jerusalem to liberate it. This fighter may have died and her soul may have ascended to Heaven, but still our mothers give birth to thousands like Dalal, and she still walks among us. Dalal Mughrabi has given us a lot, and I personally am proud to attend the Dalal Mughrabi School, which bears this pioneering name."

Teacher at the school:
"Dalal Mughrabi is a fighter who carried out Jihad and struggle from the beginning of her life. She was one of the brave female fighters who carried out Martyrdom-seeking operations (i.e., terror attacks). We in the Ministry of Education had the honor of naming our school after the Martyr Dalal Mughrabi, so that her eternal memory will stay for a long time."

Suicide attacks ("martyrdom-seeking operations") are the highest aspiration for these Palestinian Arab girls, today. Generations are being taught to join a death cult.

Yet whenever the issue of incitement is brought up, it is minimized by "progressive" Westerners. It isn't newsworthy. Plans to build houses are major headlines, girls being taught to kill themselves along with as many Jews as possible doesn't even merit a footnote.

04/14 Links Pt2: The Left Doesn’t Understand the Arab War Against Israel; The PCUSA Witch-hunt

From Ian:

Why the Left Doesn’t Understand the Arab War Against Israel
Frankly, the Palestinian Arabs should be celebrating their dumb luck that they happen to live next to and among Jews in Israel, where biology trumps ideology, and where Israel’s actions don’t mirror how they are treated by the Palestinian Arabs: with acts of terrorism, hatred, and glorification of murderers.
If the Palestinians lived anywhere else in the Arab and Muslim world they would be persecuted and the media and world would not report nor care about their fate. That is really how most of the rest of their so-called Arab brethren treat them – as political pawns and pariahs in their war on the Jews.
Peace is a long way away. It’s not helped by the moral narcissists and useful idiots on the Left. Too many on the Left, including in academia, engage in Stockholm syndrome, becoming emotionally attached to and sympathetic with the victimizers, the terrorists (who, ironically, would slit their throats if given the chance).
The status quo is terrible. But all of the alternatives to date are existentially dangerous to Israel. The onus must be on the Palestinian-Arabs to prove they truly are interested in recognition and peaceful co-existence with Israel. For the past 66 years, they have in fact proved the exact opposite.
The Left’s jealousy and envy of Israel’s amazing success and humanitarian accomplishments; their self-hatred; failure to listen to what the Judeo-Christian world’s enemies advocate; appeasing them; excusing them is breathtakingly presumptuous and arrogant.
Where is the feminist anger at Brandeis?
‘Honor Diaries” might not be coming to a theater near you, at least not if CAIR gets its way. The award-winning documentary about “honor” violence against girls and women in much of the Muslim world was released last month in honor of International Women’s Day, and it didn’t take long for the Council on American Islamic Relations to slap its all-purpose “Islamophobic” label on it. The film has been shown in dozens of venues, but CAIR has raised enough of a stink to get screenings cancelled on several college campuses, including the University of Michigan and the University of Illinois.
CAIR — a front group for Islamist extremism that masquerades as a civil rights organization (its first executive director, Nihad Awad, was an open supporter of Hamas) — is good at raising stinks. Last week Brandeis University caved in to demands that it rescind its offer of an honorary degree to Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a heroic defender of women’s rights in the Islamic world. With a life story that reads like a screenplay, Ali has personally experienced many of the evils she fights, including genital mutilation, forced marriage, and savage “honor” crimes. Her remarkable accomplishments should easily merit the honor of any university that upholds reason and intellectual diversity. But Brandeis apparently has different priorities now, like giving CAIR and the Islamophobia-phobes a veto over honorary degrees.
Ali was involved in making “Honor Diaries,” which goes out of its way to convey respect for moderate Islam. It spotlights nine eloquent women with roots in the Islamic world, several of whom are devout Muslims — “Islam is my spiritual journey,” says one — and all of whom are passionate about exposing the terrible abuses women and girls in many Muslim cultures suffer in the name of family honor. None thinks such horrors should be excused or neglected out of a misplaced cultural sensitivity or political correctness.

Look at how many fans Hamas' lawyer has!

Stanley Cohen, lawyer for Hamas and other terrorists, is going to jail for tax evasion. Here is his rambling description of his version of events, as he pretends to be a martyr for freedom, including his purposeful conflation of human rights and terrorism:


Whatever, dude.

But what struck me was the number of supporters he has who retweeted this self-serving piece of garbage as if Cohen is a hero. As of Monday morning, 467 people retweeted this and nearly 300 favorited it.

It truly is amazing that so many are so screwed up as to think that Cohen is a hero.


04/14 Links Pt1: Guardian plays crooked lawyer for the Palestinians; Tony Blair’s advisers tied to MB

From Ian:

Khaled Abu Toameh: Palestinians' "Anti-Normalization" Movement
Palestinian Authority security forces used force to disperse and arrest Palestinian activists who tried to prevent Indians from performing a dance in Ramallah on April 12.
The activists accused the Indian Classical Dance Performance, Kathak, of appearing before members of the Indian community in Tel Aviv, saying this was a form of "normalization" with Israel.
The Palestinian Campaign for the Academic & Cultural Boycott of Israel, an anti-Israel group that claims to be pro-Palestinian, issued a statement calling for boycotting the Indian dancers who had been invited to attend a Palestinian book fair in Ramallah.
The group said that the Indian dancers' performance in Tel Aviv came in "wake of an upsurge in the fierce onslaught against the Palestinian people by the Israeli Occupation Forces."
'A raging anti-Semite' - Who is Frazier Glenn Cross?
Frazier Glenn Cross, the man in police custody for allegedly shooting three people dead outside two Jewish community centers near Kansas City, is an avowed white supremacist who has not been shy about expressing his disdain for Jews and blacks.
According to a profile of Cross conducted by the Southern Poverty Law Center, the man who formerly ran for a Senate seat in Missouri, once held the title of “grand dragon” of the Carolina Knights of the Ku Klux Klan.
He was also sent to prison for operating an illegal paramilitary organization and using intimidation tactics against blacks, as well as illegal weapons possession.
Cross, who did two tours of duty in Vietnam and was also a member of the elite Green Berets, said he was indoctrinated by racist newspapers which he read in his youth.
Netanyahu condemns ‘hatred of Jews’ in Kansas shooting
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday condemned the murder of three people in a shooting attack at US Jewish institutions, saying it bore the hallmarks of anti-Semitic attacks.
“We condemn the murders, which according to all the signs were committed from hatred of Jews,” said a statement from his office, which added that Netanyahu had sent condolences to the victims’ families.
“The state of Israel, together with all civilized people, is committed to fighting this pestilence,” Netanyahu said.
IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz also said anti-Semitism was behind the attack that left three dead.

French Jews "afraid to be Jewish" (BBC)

From the BBC:



The report is quite good.

But being the BBC, the headline skews the report:

Anti-Semitism forcing Jews out of France, says Israel

Israel has said an increasing number of Jewish people are migrating to the country from France because of a rise in anti-Semitism.

Around 3,200 people left last year, a 63% jump when compared to 2012.

Christian Fraser reports from Paris.
In the report, the Israeli representative in France said that Jews are feeling unwelcome and notes that the economy is bad as well. The first French Jew interviewed is the one who said in this report that antisemitism is the reason he and his family are leaving. And the reporter shows an explicitly antisemitic rally held this year.

In other words, it isn't an Israeli claim that antisemitism is causing the French aliyah - it is the French Jews and the objective evidence itself.

By claiming that "Israel says" rather than what the French Jews themselves are saying, the BBC's editors are subtly pretending that the problem is not real antisemitism but Israel encouraging the perception of antisemitism.

(h/t Harley)

What can Shurat HaDin do at the ICC?

Ma'an reports:

Right-wing Israeli political parties have begun a campaign to sue president Abbas for "war crimes" at the International Criminal Court in response to the Palestinian Authority's recent decision to join international conventions and treaties.

The campaign comes amid a near breakdown in ongoing peace negotiations between Israel and the PLO, and seeks to file legal procedures against Abbas accusing him of supporting "terrorism" and aiding to terrorist organizations.

Beginning on Friday, Israeli newspapers and websites have published advertisements calling on Israeli lawyers to join the campaign led by the Israel Law Center to sue Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas on charges of supporting terrorist organizations.

One of the prominent leaders of the campaign is chairman of the Jewish Home party Naftali Bennett, who has been a vocal critic of peace negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians.

An ad in the Israeli daily newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth features president Abbas behind bars with a phrase in Arabic reading, "We will terrorize him in The Hague."
It actually says in Hebrew, "He terrorizes us the the UN....we will terrorize him in the Hague."

Palestinian officials, however, have downplayed the move, pointing out that Israel cannot pursue legal action at the international court due to its own failure to sign the treaties.

Palestinian minister of justice Ali Muhanna told Ma'an that the Israeli government had "lost balance both politically and legally."

Their response, he said, reflects the degree of rage in Israel towards the PA for attempting to join international conventions.

Muhanna confirmed that Israel "cannot engage in any legal action at the ICC because Israel is not a signatory to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court."

"Such legal proceedings are submitted through the ICC's Attorney General or through the UN Security Council."
It is true that Israel cannot file a complaint with the ICC's prosecutor, as it is not a signatory to the Rome Statute.

But Shurat HaDin can.

From the ICC (archived):
The Prosecutor may start an investigation upon referral of situations in which there is a reasonable basis to believe that crimes have been or are being committed. Such referrals must be made by a State Party or the Security Council of the United Nations, acting to address a threat to international peace and security. In accordance with the Statute and the Rules of Procedure and Evidence, the Prosecutor must evaluate the material submitted to him before making the decision on whether to proceed.

In addition to State Party and Security Council referrals, the Prosecutor may also receive information on crimes within the jurisdiction of the Court provided by other sources, such as individuals or non-governmental organisations. The Prosecutor conducts a preliminary examination of this information in every case. If the Prosecutor then decides that there is a reasonable basis to proceed with an investigation, he will request the Pre-Trial Chamber to authorise an investigation.
So, yes, Shurat HaDin - or anyone on the planet - can request that the Prosecutor indict a party that violates the provisions of the Rome Statute.

It is important to realize that the ICC will not indict if there is a functioning court system that can do the job instead. As the ICC says:

The Preamble of the Rome Statute recognises that the Court itself is but a last resort for bringing justice to the victims of genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity. It therefore calls upon all States to take measures at the national level and enhance international co-operation to put an end to impunity, and reminds States of their duty to exercise criminal jurisdiction over those responsible for such crimes. Thus, the Rome Statute assigns the Court a role that is complementary to national systems.

Emphasising the primary responsibility of States to investigate and prosecute international crimes, the Statute provides that a case is inadmissible before the Court where the case is being investigated or prosecuted by a State which has jurisdiction over it, unless the State is unwilling or unable genuinely to carry out the investigation or prosecution. The Prosecutor is obliged to consider this requirement of the Statute when deciding whether or not to start an investigation.
If "Palestine" is a state - a precondition for its bringing cases to the ICC - then it presumably has a court system. If the West Bank is under occupation or disputed, than Israel's court system can be used for complaints. Either way, unless the ICC wants to become politicized, it seems unlikely that the ICC prosecutor will indict Israel just because the PLO insists it do so. (I don't think Shurat HaDin will make much headway at the ICC either, but the threat is as real as that of the PLO.)

So far most of the cases the ICC has dealt with are in Africa.

(h/t Anne)

Uh-oh. Some "normalization" is happening.

Palestinian Arabs (and Arabs altogether) consider "normalization" with Israel  to be one of the worst things that could happen.

So what exactly does that mean?

Last month, COGAT reported on an example of how awful "normalization" is:

A medical conference and training session took place last week at Haddasah Ein Kerem Hospital for Palestinian nurses and doctors. The conference, which focused on medical care for trauma victims, was organized by the Health Coordinator of the Civil Administration. More conferences are expected to take places in the coming weeks on several other medical issues.

On Monday, (10.3.14) the first training session for Palestinian medical workers took place. The session, which focused on trauma treatments, included lectures and presentations from trauma experts, as well as a tour of the trauma and rapid treatment wing in the hospital. The session was organized by the CA Health Administrator, Daliah Bassah, for the purpose of strengthening the ties between Israeli and Palestinian medical professionals, as well as to train them so as to better equipped to deal with trauma victims in multiple victim scenarios.

The dire need for advanced training in the field of trauma was brought to light after a serious traffic accident at the Kalandia-Giv'a junction in February 2012, in which 8 people were killed and 50 injured when a bus carrying Palestinian children and an Israeli truck collided. While the CA and Daliah were in touch with the Palestinian hospitals following the accident, providing aid and expertise, coordinating emergency care between Israeli and Palestinian emergency medical services, as well as coordinating transport to hospitals in Israel and the West Bank, it was decided that more advanced training was needed as well. Following the event, it was realized that a more efficient method of coping was needed.

"It is important that all of us in the medical field, both Israeli and Palestinian, speak the same professional language as well as have clear and open lines of communication during times of crises and multiple trauma victims so as to be able to provide the best care possible", said the head of the Haddasah trauma wing, Dr. Miklush Balah. "When Palestinian doctors turn to us for help, we need to know what the status of the patient is and what treatment they have already administered, in order to advise them on the best course of action, as well as to decide if they need to be transferred to an Israeli hospital".

Attending the conference were two Palestinian doctors who are currently interning at the hospital, as part of a program where Palestinian doctors, nurses, and technicians from Palestinian hospitals intern at Israeli hospitals and receive high level training, with which they return to their original hospitals upon concluding the internship. The two doctors, Dr. Abed Salameh and Dr. Muhamad Awa'ad, who are interning in trauma related fields, have already had the opportunity to put what they learned in Israel to use, although not quite in the way they thought they would. Dr. Awa'ad was able to save the life of his niece by pushing her doctors away from riskier, more invasive options and running more tests before operating on her, and Dr. Salameh treated twin girls who were involved in a car accident that he witnessed on his way to work one morning.

"I'm currently interning at a hospital in Israel, but I fully intend to return to a hospital in the West Bank and use the knowledge I have gained here to improve the treatment we are able to give there" explained Dr. Awa'ad. "Advancement in the field of medicine and the cooperation we have between the medical systems, is, for me, is a direct road to peace".
Sounds awful, doesn't it?

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Israel-haters create Overland Park meme: Jews aren't really targets (update)

Earlier I posted about the horrific shootings aimed at Jews in Overland Park, and I noted that while obvious antisemitic acts are not an every day occurrence in the US, they are far more prevalent than "Islamophobic" attacks - yet from the media one would get the impression that Muslims are victims far more than Jews in the US of bigotry.

There is a certain strain of Israel haters, though, who cannot stomach the idea that traditional antisemitism exists today. Their logic is that since Israel is meant to be a haven from antisemitism, and they don't want to give Israel any excuse for existing, they must downplay and trivialize any overt murders of Jews.

Immediately after I tweeted my post, Mira Bar Hillel - who I have proven to be about as dishonest a critic of Israel as can be -  tweeted back that the issue isn't Jews, but guns:



Max Blumenthal made a similar point, minimizing the murder of three people who were killed because they were assumed to be Jews and comparing it to another shooting spree in Kansas City:




Max's tweet is most interesting when you recall some tweets he has made previously.

Even though there have been consistently far more antisemitic attacks than attacks on any other religious group in America, Blumenthal wrote in 2012:







Blumenthal, supposed defender of victims worldwide, cannot allow Jews to be considered victims, ever - because that would undermine his thesis that Israel has no moral reason to exist. So facts must be disregarded and belittled. Indeed, he instead implies that Jewish power is what is causing the DHS to give some $10 million a year to Jewish institutions for security.

Yes, he is leaning on an antisemitic stereotype to downplay the existence of antisemitism!

Overland Park (not to mention the other examples I gave of Seattle, DC, Manhattan, the Bronx, Los Angeles..) shows that Jews really are a disproportionate target of hate in America. The US is nowhere near the point that France or Sweden or other countries are, of course, and most Jews are quite safe even as those DHS grants that Blumenthal decries are going towards placing concrete planters and video surveillance systems in larger synagogues and Jewish schools nationwide. (Synagogues and Jewish schools in Europe are fortresses; America's are nowhere near that yet.)

Obviously Blumenthal and Bar Hillel and their disgusting ilk cannot accept the idea that Jews are the juiciest targets for America's bigots, both right and left wing.. Their viewpoints and thought processes are completely skewed by their own hate - something they have in common with the people who plot to kill Jews.

(h/t Joshua U)

UPDATE: I didn't know this when I wrote the last sentence: The killer, now identified as Glenn Miller Jr., has quoted Blumenthal when giving his antisemitic rants on white supremacist sites! (Here's his personal site.)

UPDATE 2: The known victims as of this writing  were not Jewish, updated post to reflect that.

"Talk Yiddish to Me" (video spoof)

Yeah, it's funny:



As was once discussed in the comments, the song (NSFW) this is parodying samples a song from Balkan Beat Box - an Israeli band. So the saxophone break goes full circle.

(h/t Yerushalimey)

Jews are being shot and killed in the US while the media talks about "Islamophobia"

At least 3 people have been killed in two separate Jewish centers in Overland Park, Kansas - at a children's theatre performance and at a senior center:

The suspect, according to reports
Three people are dead after shootings at Jewish-related locations in the Kansas City area. Authorities confirm that a suspect is in custody.

One of the dead was killed in the parking lot of the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City.

Authorities also confirmed that a one person was undergoing surgery at Overland Park Regional Medical Center. It wasn't immediately clear whether that one person died in surgery and was one of the three dead or was a fourth person shot.

A suspect was arrested at the Valley View Park Elementary School, which is a mile away from Village Shalom. KCTV5's Bonyen Lee says the suspect appeared to yell "Heil Hitler" as he was being led away in handcuffs by Overland Park police.

One shooting was reported about 1 p.m. Sunday at the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City, according to an Overland Park Fire Department spokesman. This happened at the Lewis and Shirley White Theatre inside the center.

About 75 people were inside the theatre, most of them children.

Teens were auditioning for KC Superstar and parents were frantically trying to get to their children.

A second shooting was reported at Village Shalom, which is an assisted living center at 5500 West 123rd St.
Recently we have been seeing stories that antisemitic incidents have gone down in the US this past year, although the number of violent acts has gone up.

But there have been a number of fatal shootings at Jewish sites in recent years.

Besides today's, there was a shooting at the US Holocaust Museum in 2009, killing a guard.

A shooting by a Muslim at the Seattle Jewish federation building in 2006 killed one woman and injured five others.

In 2002, a man at the El Al counter in Los Angeles Airport killed two people and injured four others before being killed.

There were also a number of foiled bomb plots against synagogues and Jewish centers in the US - 2005 in Los Angeles, 2009 in the Bronx, and 2011 in Manhattan.

In general, the US is a great place for Jews to live. Jews have little to fear in most of their communities. It is not at all like many places in Europe or in the Arab world.

But antisemitism exists, both from the right and the left, and it regularly manifests itself with extreme violence.

Yet when was the last time antisemitism merited a front page story in a major newspaper or magazine?

Time Magazine in 2010 had a cover story on Islamophobia. As I noted then, the number of antisemitic incidents in the US in 2010 dwarfed the number of anti-Muslim incidents.

Unless I am mistaken, there has not been a single Muslim fatality due to an anti-Muslim hate crime in the US since 9/11. (One Sikh was killed in an anti-Muslim attack and two other Sikhs were killed since 9/11 under unclear circumstances, plus a horrific murder of six Sikhs who were killed by a white supremacist.) .)

There is real hate out there in the US, and real people willing to kill people in service of that hate. And the objects of that deadly hate are not Muslims.

Outside of occasional stories like these, you wouldn't know that.

(UPDATE: the information about Sikhs being attacked, h/t Dave Sigeti)

Acknowledging the Obvious: Presbyterian Aggression (Michael Lumish)

Michael Lumish, of the Israel Thrives blog as well as a regular blogger at Times of Israel, will be writing a weekly column here at EoZ.


Most Americans, particularly those of us with liberal inclinations, think of Arab peoples as persecuted minorities who are struggling, to this day, to free themselves from the ongoing social and economic implications of western imperial and colonial aggression in the Middle East. For centuries white-Anglo westerners dominated that part of the world and, therefore, progressives who care about universal human rights are not surprised at the Arab push-back, including the Palestinian-Arab push-back against Israel.

Certainly those of us who marched against the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan largely perceived the peoples of those countries as innocent victims of western and American hostility. We understood that those wars were racist wars that needlessly slaughtered innocent Arabs in number of lives going to at least the hundreds of thousands, if not considerably more.

What we tend not to appreciate in the United States is that the great Arab-Muslim nation was one of the foremost imperial endeavors within recorded human history. The Arab peoples are not merely pawns batted around by powerful, racist, white westerners, but peoples with long and proud histories that cannot be reduced to a demeaning history of victimhood.

In a recent piece for Arutz Sheva we are reminded of this by the San Francisco-based non-profit organization, JIMENA: Jews Indigenous to the Middle East annd North Africa, which describes itself as "dedicated to educating and advocating on behalf of 850,000 Jewish refugees displaced in the 20th century, after the establishment of the State of Israel, from the Middle East and North Africa."

As people who follow the ongoing Arab aggression against the Jews in the Middle East know, the Presbyterian Church (USA) recently published a booklet entitled "Zionism Unsettled" in which the American branch of that denomination condemns Israel and Zionism for the deterioration of relations between Arabs and Jews in the Middle East.

As the JIMENA author of the piece writes:
"But instead of recognizing the reality of rampant, deep-seated anti-Semitism in the Middle East & North Africa, "Zionism Unsettled" places blame on the State of Israel and presents a revisionist history of the Mizrahi refugee experience. Among many unfounded claims, the blooklet states that Mizrahis "share a history of largely harmonious integration and acculturation in their host countries. Sadly, this model of coexistence was destabilized by the regional penetration of Zionism beginning in the late 19th century."
It staggers the imagination to realize the degree of hatred, ignorance and moral stupidity required of the Presbyterian Church for them to publish such toxic rubbish under their official seal. Whatever their reasonings or excuses or justifications or apologetics, this little "booklet" is nothing less than a true kick in the head to the Jewish people.

First, let it be understood that the Jews of the Middle East outside of Israel do not, and did not, live in "host countries." That land is land that Jews have been living upon for thousands of years before the birth of Muhammad and the rise of imperial Islam. That land was conquered and controlled by the armies of Islam following the death of the founder of the faith in the 7th century - long after the Jewish presence - and the non-Islamic population were pressed into submission under the terms of dhimmitude as laid out in the seventh-century Pact of Omar.

There was, furthermore, never "largely harmonious integration" among Jews under Arab-Muslim domination. In some times and places the conditions of dhimmitude and submission represented lighter and more benevolent systems of oppression and in some times and places those systems of oppression were much worse. However, to describe the circumstances of dhimmitude throughout the history of the Jews under Arab-Muslim rule as "harmonious integration" would be something akin to describing the plight of black people living under Jim Crow in the American South as "harmonious integration."

In other words, the very notion of it is total nonsense.

JIMENA writes:
In his "Open letter to the Presbyterian Church USA from an Iraqi Jew", Joseph Samuels describes the ongoing brutality which culminated in the Farhud, a Nazi-incited riot in 1941 that claimed the lives of 180 Jews, destroyed Baghdad's Jewish quarter, and forced the couuntry's Jewish population to live in absolute fear.

"The cause of the Farhud wasn't Zionism...[it was] purely an anti-Jewish act. At 14, I was chased by two Muslim youths with a knife for stopping them from molesting my neighbor's teenage daughter in broad daylight. At 18, after graduation from Al A'Adadiah High School, I was refused an exist visa to leave Iraq to study in American because I was Jewish. My story is not unique. I am one of 150,000 Iraqi Jews who was discriminated against, oppressed, and forced to escape religious persecution because of my faith." The fear of impending violence dictated and suppressed Iraqi Jewish life.
So much for "largely harmonious integration."

It's doubtful that most westerners are familiar with the Farhud and most are probably unfamiliar with the fact that the Arabs, including the Palestinian-Arabs, generally allied themselves with the Nazis during World War II. The genocidal riots in Baghdad in early June of 1941 were because of pure genocidal racism and had nothing, or next to nothing, to do with the movement for Jewish national liberation.

In The Farhud: Roots of the Arab-Nazi Alliance in the Holocaust, by Edwin Black, we read this:

Baghdad was a burning madhouse. It burned not just with ethnic hatred but with cries to murder and destroy the Jewish community who had lived peacably in the country for 2,600 years, since a millenium before the advent of Islam. The rampage would be forever seared uponn the collective Iraqi Jewish consciousness as the Farhud. In Arabized Kurdish, farhud means something beyond mere chaos, something more than a riot. Perhaps farhud is best translated as "violent dispossession." Some translate it as "mass rape and killing."

But the events of June 1 and 2, 1941, were not just the sudden frenzied carnage of local Arab hooligans against their neighbors. This was a well-planned Holocaust-era pogrom, organized by Arab Nazis in sympathy with, and under the direction of the Third Reich's surrogates in Iraq, the Arab and Islamic world, as the ignition switch for an international Arab-Nazi alliance. This alliance, embraced by many ordinary Arabs, was led by Hajj Muhammmad Amin al-Husseini, the Mufti of Jerusalem. The Mufti was acknowledged by Hitler himself as Berlin's most important leader in the Arab nation.

(Black, Edwin, The Farhud: Roots of the Arab-Nazi Alliance in the Holocaust, Dialog Press, pg. 4, 2010.)
Finally, Zionism did not "penetrate" anything at the end of the nineteenth-century since it had been around in that part of the world since the destruction of the Second Temple by the Romans in 70 AD. All "Zionism" means is the longing of the Jewish people to reestablish our home on the land that we come from and that longing has been part of the Jewish soul for thousands of years, now. This is so in part because, like all peoples, the Jewish people wish to have sovereignty on the primary land of their history, and because of the remarkable mistreatment of Jewish refugees by majority populations throughout the diaspora over the course of millennia, whether in the Middle East or in Europe.

Shortly we are going to again celebrate Passover which, along with Thanksgiving, is one of my favorite holidays. We will celebrate the freedom of the Jewish people from oppression and submission.

At the very end we will raise our glasses and cry out, "Next year in Jerusalem!"

For two thousand years the Jews have yearned to restore our country and now we finally have.

I may like to return to Jerusalem next year, but for something approaching half the world's Jews they do not have to wait until next year because they are home now.

They are home and they are going to continue to build their home and create lives for themselves and their children in their home.

Our home.

The restitution of the Jewish people upon traditional Jewish land is now an historical fact and if the Presbyterian Church (USA) does not like it, well, we all know what they can go do... pound sand.