Khamenei’s Holocaust denial exposes a larger problem of Iranian antisemitism

Khamenei’s Holocaust denial exposes a larger problem of Iranian antisemitism

April 3, 2014 | Or Avi Guy

“Holocaust is an event whose reality is uncertain and if it has happened, it’s uncertain how it has happened” read a tweet on the Twitter account of Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. The Supreme Leader’s comments are an important reminder of the real beliefs, ideology and objectives which underpin the Iranian regime.

Peace process crisis/ Palestinians learning about the Holocaust?

Peace process crisis/ Palestinians learning about the Holocaust?

April 3, 2014

This Update leads with the crisis in the peace process, with US Secretary of State John Kerry cancelling a planned trip to the Middle East after Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas signed applications for “Palestine” to join 15 international bodies in violation of the agreement underlying the deal to hold talks for nine months. This occurred after Israel failed to release a scheduled group of 26 Palestinian prisoners on March 29, arguing that Palestinians were not living up to their side of the deal by refusing to negotiate directly since November.

Media Week - Lyons in the Doogue house

Media Week – Lyons in the Doogue house

March 28, 2014 | Allon Lee

ABC Radio National‘s “Saturday Extra” (March 15) spotlighted the historic law passed by Israel’s Knesset to phase out the national service exemption for thousands of ultra-Orthodox Jews.

Host Geraldine Doogue interviewed John Lyons, the Australian newspaper’s Middle East correspondent, for his take on the issue.

A reality check on "Breaking the Silence"

A reality check on “Breaking the Silence”

March 28, 2014 | Sharyn Mittelman

It is interesting to note that nearly all of the criticisms of “Breaking the Silence” (BTS) recently made by AIJAC and NGO Monitor were validated by a British journalist based on his own personal experiences with the group, and with no obvious agenda.

Jake Wallis Simons works as a feature writer for Britain’s Telegraph newspaper, previously worked for the BBC, is a documentary filmaker and has also written three novels. He participated in tour with BTS while carrying out interviews and research for ‘Meet the Settlers’, an in-depth Telegraph multimedia feature about Israeli settlements. In an article published in the UK Telegraph titled “Why are European powers (and Oxfam) funding a radical Israel Group?”, Simons documents his experience with BTS.

Three "noes" from Abbas?

Three “noes” from Abbas?

March 28, 2014

Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas met US President Obama last week. The meeting, which one Palestinian negotiator described as “difficult”,  received relatively low-key coverage at the time, but later Israeli coverage, based on US Administation sources, suggests that Abbas was particularly negative and rejected three key elements of the US Secretary of State John Kerry’s “framework agreement” for peace. Yesterday, Kerry met with Abbas in Amman to try to narrow the gaps, as the US scrambles to try to find a way to keep the talks alive after their scheduled end date in late April, with the PA placing new conditions on any such continuation. This Update looks at the state of play in the peace process in the wake of Abbas’ apparent “three noes” in Washington.

Palestinian propaganda's "free kick" in Australian Parliament

Palestinian propaganda’s “free kick” in Australian Parliament

March 26, 2014 | Ahron Shapiro

In remarks in federal Parliament on Monday, South Australian MP Tony Zappia, citing an unspecified report, claimed that “two teenage Palestinian soccer players were allegedly shot in the feet [by Israeli troops] to prevent them from ever playing soccer again.”
In referencing this incident, Zappia stumbled across one of the most egregious and vile cases of anti-Israel propaganda in recent months, yet one which is most easily disprovable.

Exposure draft of the Freedom of Speech (Repeal of S. 18C) Bill 2014: Initial Analysis

Exposure draft of the Freedom of Speech (Repeal of S. 18C) Bill 2014: Initial Analysis

March 25, 2014 | Daniel Meyerowitz-Katz

Federal Attorney-General George Brandis has released an exposure draft of his proposed changes to section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act, which currently forbids doing an act done because of someone’s ethnicity which is reasonably likely to ‘offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate’ that person, as well as section 18D, which provides public interest exemptions to 18C. The government has opened the draft to community consultation and called for submissions. Here is AIJAC’s initial analysis of the legal implications of the exposure draft.

Latest Iran Nuclear Talks

Latest Iran Nuclear Talks

March 21, 2014

The latest round of nuclear talks between Iran and the P5+1 (US, UK, France, Russia, China and Germany) ended yesterday, with little sign the gaps between the parties were narrowed significantly though it was reported the ongoing building of the Arak heavy water reactor – which will produce bomb-ready plutonium – was raised as a major issue.

Media Week - Ship of fools

Media Week – Ship of fools

March 20, 2014 | Allon Lee

Media coverage of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s press conference in Eilat publicising a hefty array of missiles, mortars and 400,000 rounds of ammunition found on the merchant ship Klos C allegedly shipped from Iran and headed for Gaza ran the gamut from indifference to downright contempt.

Confirmed: Construction in settlement outside major blocs very low

Confirmed: Construction in settlement outside major blocs very low

March 19, 2014 | Ahron Shapiro

In a follow-up to my blog post from March 6 on the subject of the reality of construction in Israel’s West Bank settlements, a new look at the numbers from former Bush Administration deputy national security advisor Elliott Abrams. Abrams’ detailed figures confirm more definitely that, as I said, “housing construction within Israel’s West Bank settlements under the Netanyahu government remains at some of the lowest levels in years”. In fact, construction outside major settlement blocs – areas that Israel is expected to keep through mutually agreed land swaps in any potential peace agreement – was very low, and probably amounted to not more than a few hundred homes.

Moreover, even that extremely limited construction may no longer be taking place, now that Israeli media has reported on what appears to be a silent settlement freeze that has been put into effect outside of the settlement blocs.

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