Continuing a decade-long drop, anti-Semitic incidents in the U.S. declined by 19%, according to the Anti-Defamation League’s (ADL) most recent annual audit. “The falling number of incidents targeting Jews is another indication of just how far we have come in finding full acceptance in society, and it is a reflection of how much progress our country has made shunning bigotry and hatred,” said Abraham Foxman, national director of the ADL. In 2013, the ADL counted 751 anti-Semitic incidents, a decline from the 927 incidents in 2012. Compiled since 1979, the ADL annual report includes assaults, vandalism and harassment targeting Jews. Anti-Israel incidents are only counted when they cross the line into anti-Semitism.
Overall, anti-Semitic incidents fell markedly in the past year, a change the audit’s authors attributed to fewer anti-Israel demonstrations. That may be because Israel was involved in fewer major military actions in 2013. The ADL noted one “dark spot” in its survey: a significant increase in anti-Semitic assaults – 31 incidents, up from 17 in 2012. The audit offers the example of a 12-year-old Jewish girl in Brooklyn who had a bottle thrown at her by a group of girls, including one who called her a “dirty Jew.” “The high number of violent assaults is a sobering reminder that there is still a subset of Americans who are deeply infected with anti-Semitism and who feel emboldened enough to act out their bigotry,” said Foxman.
Incidents of anti-Semitic vandalism in 2013 dropped to 315 from 440 in 2012. They included an incident in which someone scrawled a swastika and “Death to Jews” in a service hallway of a Long Island mall, and another in which the word “Jew” in foot-high letters was cut into the trunk of a car with a Jewish day school bumper sticker in Natick, Mass.
ISRAELI CHRISTIANS CALL FOR SOLIDARITY WITH BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN IRAQ AND SYRIA
Israeli Christian groups became frustrated over the world’s disproportionate focus on the recent Israel/Gaza conflict, while all but ignoring the brutal slaughter and forced conversion of fellow Christians in Iraq and Syria. “We call on the Christian community worldwide to announce five days of mourning and to paint all doors with the Arabic letter “nun” in solidarity with Christians in Mosul, Iraq, where Christians were expelled, slaughtered and churches burned,” read a statement by the Israeli Christian Lobby. There are widespread reports that the Islamic State has begun painting the letter “nun” on the doors of Christian homes and businesses ahead of a deadline given to them in Iraq to either convert to Islam, or face the sword.
Nowhere has this persecution been worse than in Mosul, the ancient city of Nineveh, which is home to one of the world’s oldest Christian communities. In the face of the Islamist State’s threats, most chose to flee, but not before many paid for their faith with their lives. “For the first time in the history of Iraq, Mosul is now empty of Christians,” according to Patriarch Louis Sako, Iraq’s most senior Christian leader. The Israeli Christian Lobby noted that while this was happening in Iraq and Syria, local Arab leaders who claim to represent both Muslims and Christians remained silent, but demonstrated their hypocrisy when they suddenly screamed with outrage over Israel responding to terrorist rocket fire from Gaza.
The Arab leadership, the lobby insisted, “has demonstrated that it does not truly represent the Israeli Christians or even the Druze, but rather the Islamic agenda of the Arab public. We call on all Christians to wake up!” The Israeli Christian Lobby is organizing a rally to take place in Haifa in solidarity with Christians under attack in Iraq, Syria and other parts of the Middle East.
EGYPTIAN WANTS TO SUE ISRAEL FOR DAMAGES CAUSED BY BIBLICAL PLAGUES
Ahmad al-Gamal, a columnist for Al-Yawm Al-Sabi daily newspaper, has proposed that Egypt sue numerous countries for damages inflicted over the past few thousand years. Those countries include: France, for Napoleon’s invasion, Turkey for the abuses of the Ottoman Empire, Britain for its “occupation”, and Israel for damages caused by Old Testament plagues. al-Gamal “claims the Bible’s collective punishment of the Egyptian people was uncalled for, as it was Pharaoh himself who was responsible for the suffering of the Israelites, and quoted the Hebrew Bible in asserting Israel should repay Egypt for the harm caused by the plagues, as well as the theft of precious commodities used to build the Tabernacle in the desert.”
al-Gamal wrote: “We want compensation for the plagues that were inflicted upon us as a result of the curses that the Jews’ ancient forefathers cast upon our forefathers, who did not deserve to pay for the mistake of Egypt’s ruler at the time. What is written in the Torah proves that it was Pharaoh who oppressed the Children of Israel, rather than the Egyptian people. But they inflicted upon us the plague of locusts that ate everything; the plague that transformed the Nile’s waters into blood, so nobody could drink of them for a long time; the plague of darkness that kept the world dark day and night; the plague of frogs; and the plague of the killing of the firstborn, namely every first offspring born to woman or beast, and so on.”
“We want compensation,” he continued, “for the gold, silver, copper, precious stones, fabrics, hides and lumber, and for all animal meat, hair, hides and wool, and for other materials that the Jews used in their rituals. These are resources that cannot be found among desert wanderers unless they took them before their departure.”
The Jewish Prayer Focus is a call to intercession for the Jewish people for the 22-day period (September 24-October 15) during the Holy Days of the Biblical calendar in Lev 23:26ff. Our main focus is to pray for the salvation of the Jews (which is happening) and also to prepare ourselves for the return of the Messiah, which these holidays foreshadow. It is not too late to obtain the prayer guide which contains prayer points, teachings, testimonies, and introductions to Israeli congregations, mostly written by Messianic leaders themselves. Our 13th edition has the theme, “Look Up! Your Redemption Draws Near” (Lk 21:28), and includes an explanation of how the prophetic signs (blood moons) are currently coinciding with the prophetic seasons (Biblical feast days), four times in two years. Red-blood moons are a biblical sign of the end-times and the coming of the Lord (Joel 2:30-32, Matt 24:29-31, Lk 21:25-28).
Copies are still available from JPF, PO Box 54, Kerrimuir VIC 3129, email@example.com or call 03-9899 7231. Cost: Aud $8.50 for one copy, $16 for 2, $22.50 for 3, $75 for 10, $120 for 20, incl local postage.