Zio-Watch News Round-up

Israel re-arrests nuclear whistle-blower over TV interview: Zio-Watch, September 10, 2015


Dr. Patrick Slattery’s News Roundup
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From PressTV

Israeli nuclear whistle-blower Mordechai Vanunu

The Israeli regime has once again detained nuclear whistle-blower Mordechai Vanunu, claiming that he violated the terms of his release from prison by taking part in a recent interview with a local TV station.

The Thursday development came as the Israeli Channel 2 television broadcaster, which aired the interview with Vanunu on September 4, is battling with the regime’s police who demand the “full, unedited footage of the interview,” Israeli media say.

The channel refuses to hand over the material, citing the journalistic principle of protecting sources.

In the lengthy interview on Israeli TV on Friday, Vanunu reportedly explained how he once exposed the existence of Israel’s nuclear arsenal and elaborated on a potential disaster which could emanate from Israel’s notorious Dimona facility.

The file photo shows Israel’s nuclear facility in the Negev Desert outside Dimona.


The 60-year-old Vanunu said he had an obligation to reveal to the world the nature of the “powder keg” in Dimona, calling Israel’s entire nuclear strategy “a failure” that he had “exposed.”
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From Russia Today

Refugee crisis: Austria halts train service with Hungary due to ‘massive overburdening’

Austrian policemen watch as migrants wait for trains towards Germany from the Wien Westbahnhof railway station in Vienna, Austria, September 9, 2015. © Leonhard Foeger
Austria’s national railway operator says it is halting train traffic to and from Hungary due to “massive overburdening.” It comes as Europe continues to face an escalating refugee crisis.

“We need to temporarily suspend the operation of trains to and from Hungary due to the massive congestion…until further notice, no tickets are available,” Austrian Federal Railways wrote on its website.

It added that a rail replacement bus service is in effect, along with regular buses.

The rail company said that services will be suspended for at least the rest of Thursday because Austria cannot handle the volume of migrants crossing its border.

A spokesman for the company said it is too soon to tell whether services will resume on Friday.

“It would be irresponsible to simply let people keep streaming in and spend the night at train stations,” the spokesman said.

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From The Times of Israel

Clinton’s Iran rhetoric aims to show she’s no Obama

Presidential hopeful reviving critique of president’s foreign policy in bid to revamp campaign and highlight diplomatic chops

September 10, 2015, 8:51 am

US Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton takes part in a discussion after speaking about the Iran nuclear deal at the Brookings Institution in Washington, DC, September 9, 2015. (AFP/NICHOLAS KAMM)

US Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton takes part in a discussion after speaking about the Iran nuclear deal at the Brookings Institution in Washington, DC, September 9, 2015. (AFP/NICHOLAS KAMM)

WASHINGTON — With Iran high on the agenda, Hillary Rodham Clinton is subtlety resurrecting the critique of Barack Obama’s approach to world affairs that she presented during the 2008 presidential campaign.

In a speech on Wednesday, the 2016 Democratic front-runner and former secretary of state once again positioned herself as a hawkish alternative to the president, her one-time campaign rival, on a series of international issues — starting with Iran.

While offering her strong support for the landmark nuclear agreement with the Islamic nation, the former secretary of state lined her praise with skepticism about the intentions and trustworthiness of the longtime US enemy.

“My starting point will be one of distrust,” she said. “We should anticipate that Iran will test the next president. They’ll want to see how far they can bend the rules. That won’t work if I’m in the White House.”

Although none of Clinton’s views is new, her assertive remarks are nonetheless notable in a campaign in which there is little daylight between her and Obama on domestic issues such as the economy, his landmark health care plan and immigration.
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From the Jewish Telegraphic Agency

Dutch schoolbook says Britain endorsed Zionism to woo Jewish bankers

(JTA) — A Dutch publisher defended an assertion in a high school textbook that cash-strapped Britain’s support for Zionism owed to its desire to woo rich Jewish bankers.

“Theme Workbook – The Middle East,” which is published by ThiemeMeulenhoff and intended for students attending pre-university secondary education — the highest scholastic track in the Dutch education system for minors — is “anti-Semitic,” Likoed Nederland, a pro-Israel local association named after the Israeli ruling party, said in a statement Wednesday.

“The British government was in urgent need of money during World War I,” the history book reads on page 23, which explores the reasons for the Balfour Declaration. Issued in 1917 by the British minister responsible for the colonies, the declaration said that Britain viewed favorably the establishment of a national home for Jews in what would later become the Mandate over Palestine.

“Jewish bankers were prepared to offer favorable loan terms if the government made a gesture toward the Jewish People,” the passage reads. The book also states that “the Holocaust led to the establishment of Israel” — a fact that Zionists dispute, citing the Balfour Declaration and League of Nations resolutions.
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From the Jewish Telegraphic Agency

Why Putin embraces Jews, but not gays

Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, is greeted by Russia's Chief Rabbi Berel Lazar in Moscow, June 13, 2013. (Alexander Zemlianichenko/AP Images)

For the Kremlin, the interfaith roundtable last Thursday at Kazan’s Hall of Culture provided the perfect propaganda moment.

Before the meeting, dozens of journalists snapped pictures of Russian Chief Rabbi Berel Lazar posing alongside the mufti and archpriest of Tatarstan — a predominately Muslim state with its capital, Kazan, 800 miles east of Moscow.

Set up by the local government and the Limmud FSU Jewish group, the event kicked off celebrations of the completion of renovations at a local synagogue, which the government returned to the local Jewish community in 1996.

A better opportunity could hardly be imagined for reaffirming the commitment of Russian President Vladimir Putin and his government to defending minorities — his stated reason for invading Ukraine last year and a recurring element of pro-Russian advocacy.
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From PressTV

Palestinian fishermen check their nets after arriving back from a fishing trip at the port of Gaza City on April 21, 2015. (Photo by AFP)

Israeli navy forces have opened fire on Palestinian fishermen in their boats off the coast of the besieged Gaza Strip, Palestinian officials say.

Palestinian security officials said the incident took place off the coast of Rafah in southern Gaza Strip on Wednesday, with no report of casualties.

Last week, an 11-year-old Palestinian child was shot and injured while he was with his father, a fisherman, near the shores of Beit Lahia village in northern Gaza Strip.

Palestinian fishermen, who make a living off the shores of the Israeli-blockaded coastal sliver, are threatened daily with harassment, confiscation of boats and materials as well as detention.

Palestinian fishermen set their fishnet along the shore of the Mediterranean Sea in Gaza City, northern Gaza Strip, March 9, 2015. (Photo by AP)


Israeli navy forces often target boats belonging to Gazan fishermen even within a fishing area limit agreed by Israel and the Palestinians at the end of an Israeli war last summer.
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From the Jewish Telegraphic Agency

Final tally: 19 of 28 Jewish lawmakers back the Iran nuclear deal

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Two-thirds of the Jewish lawmakers in Congress back the Iran nuclear deal in a tally finalized when Rep. Alan Grayson of Florida announced his backing.

The announcement by Grayson, a Democrat, came late Wednesday, the day deliberations began in Congress. His endorsement brings the number of backers among the 28 Jews in Congress to 19, with nine opposed.

Grayson, a candidate for the Senate, had had strong reservations about the sanctions relief for nuclear restrictions deal reached in July between Iran and six major powers. He signed off on his statement with a Yiddish proverb: “A shlekhter sholem iz beser vi a guter krig — A bad peace is better than a good war.”

“I wish that these negotiations had been used as a vehicle to bring peace to the region,” he wrote.
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From the Jewish Telegraphic Agency

ZOA, Tea Party anti-Iran deal rally in D.C. features shofar blowing, Trump

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Hundreds gathered outside the Capitol for a rally against the Iran nuclear deal featuring shofar blowing and presidential hopefuls Donald Trump and Ted Cruz.

Wednesday’s demonstration on the West Lawn was sponsored by the Tea Party Patriots and the Zionist Organization of America, an ardently pro-Israel group. Others on hand included conservative radio host Glenn Beck; Sarah Palin, the former Alaska governor and Republican vice presidential candidate; and “Duck Dynasty” star Phil Robertson.

At the protest, jeers accompanied the mention of Iran.

Trump, who is leading in the polls among Republican candidates, was the acknowledged main draw.
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From the Jewish Telegraphic Agency

Proposed U. of California tolerance statement rapped for lack of focus on anti-Semitism

(JTA) — The University of California Board of Regents will review a new statement of “principles against intolerance,” despite calls from the campus Jewish community that want a more specific focus on anti-Semitism.

The proposed statement of principles that the board is set to discuss at its Sept. 17 meeting at U.C Irvine condemns bias, violence, threats and hate speech based on race, ethnicity, religion, citizenship, sex or sexual orientation, the Los Angeles Times reported.

The statement also says that “everyone in the university community has the right to study, teach, conduct research and work free from acts and expressions of intolerance,” and that lectures, scholarship and political expression are protected by “academic freedom or free-speech principles.”

A formal vote on the proposed statement is likely months away and the statement could change before the vote.
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From PressTV

Palestinians wave national flags during an anti-Israeli protest in the West Bank village of Azarya, February 13, 2014. (Photo by AP)

The United Nations General Assembly is scheduled to vote on a draft resolution which would allow the Palestinian flag to be raised at the world body’s headquarters in New York.

Later on Thursday, the UN will pass its judgment on the draft resolution submitted by Palestine that calls for the flags of non-member observer states, including Palestine itself, to “be raised at (UN) Headquarters and United Nations Offices following the flags of the member states of the United Nations.”

Reports say the resolution will likely be ratified as members of the Non-Aligned Movement, the largest bloc of the assembly, support the Palestinian cause.

Before the voting session, Palestinian Ambassador to the United Nations Riyad Mansour touched upon the importance of the resolution, saying although symbolic, the measure gives “our people some hope that the international community is still supporting the independence of the state of Palestine.”

Palestinian Ambassador to the United Nations Riyad Mansour (Photo by AFP)

“Things are bleak, gloomy, the political process is dead, Gaza is being suffocated. This flag resolution is like the small light of a candle to keep hope alive for the Palestinian people,” he noted, adding it is “another step to solidify the pillars of the state of Palestine in the international arena.”

This is while Washington and Tel Aviv have expressed their opposition to the measure, with US State Department spokesman Mark Toner describing it as “counterproductive” and Israel’s Envoy to the UN Ron Prosor dismissing it as “a blatant attempt to hijack the UN.”

Palestinians are seeking to create an independent state on the territories of the West Bank, including East al-Quds (Jerusalem) and the Gaza Strip, and are demanding that Israel withdraw from the occupied Palestinian territories. Israel, however, has refused to return to the 1967 borders and is unwilling to discuss the issue of al-Quds.
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From The Times of Israel

French PM calls for ‘renewed’ fight against anti-Semitism

As number of attacks against Jews grows and immigration to Israel swells, Paris looks to stem both tides

September 9, 2015, 10:40 am

French Prime Minister Manuel Valls delivers a speech at the Nazareth synagogue in Paris as part of the French government's greetings to the Jewish community ahead of the Jewish New Year, on September 8, 2015. (AFP Photo/Bertrand Guay)

French Prime Minister Manuel Valls delivers a speech at the Nazareth synagogue in Paris as part of the French government’s greetings to the Jewish community ahead of the Jewish New Year, on September 8, 2015. (AFP Photo/Bertrand Guay)

PARIS — France’s Prime Minister Manuel Valls said on Tuesday the battle against anti-Semitism in the country “must be renewed.”

“There is this rampant Holocaust denial, hatred of Jews who grew up in our neighborhoods … that has contaminated the minds of some of our youth,” Valls said at a Tuesday night event at Paris’s Nazareth synagogue honoring the Jewish New Year.

“Today the fight must be renewed,” Valls said.

Anti-Semitic attacks and incidents have increased by 84% between January and May compared to the same period last year, according to the Protection Service of the Jewish community.

Valls said that “a broad government information campaign” would be launched this fall to raise awareness of the fight against racism and anti-Semitism.
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