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American Jewish Committee attacks Trump’s call to Ban Muslims from Entering the U.S.

Will U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch arrest Donald Trump for using “anti-Muslim rhetoric” that “edges toward violence“? Or is Trump seeing something and saying something?

PRNewswire-USNewswire reports:

The American Jewish Committee (AJC) condemned in the strongest terms the latest offensive and inflammatory comments from Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, who today suggested that all Muslims should be banned from entering the United States.

“As Americans, who just observed a holiday remembering the Pilgrims who fled religious persecution in Europeto found a new home on these shores, we find Mr. Trump’s call abhorrent and wrong,” said AJC Associate Executive Director for Policy Jason Isaacson. “And as Jews who are now observing Hanukkah, a holiday that celebrates a small religious minority’s right to live unmolested, we are deeply disturbed by the nativist racism inherent in the candidate’s latest remarks. You don’t need to go back to the Hanukkah story to see the horrific results of religious persecution; religious stereotyping of this sort has been tried often, inevitably with disastrous results.

“Yes, this country faces the very real threat of radical Islamist terror. We cannot, however, fall into the trap of blaming and banning an entire religious group, who overwhelmingly reject the violence and extremism of Islamist terrorists.

“We were heartened to see condemnation of these comments come from all corners of the American political establishment, and we urge Mr. Trump to reconsider his views.”

Perhaps the AJC has forgotten that what our Fore Fathers were fleeing from was an England where the Church and State were one. They also were fleeing a totalitarian oligarchy headed by the King of England.

Islam is not unlike 16th century England under King George III. The state and the mosque are one in the same and have been so for over 1400 years. The ideology is violent and promotes the elimination of all those who oppose Islam. The followers of Mohammed live, and die, by the Quran. Quran versus 2: 191-193, reads:

And kill them wherever you overtake them and expel them from wherever they have expelled you, and fitnah is worse than killing. And do not fight them at al-Masjid al- Haram until they fight you there. But if they fight you, then kill them. Such is the recompense of the disbelievers.

And if they cease, then indeed, Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.

Fight them until there is no [more] fitnah and [until] worship is [acknowledged to be] for Allah . But if they cease, then there is to be no aggression except against the oppressors.

The Florida Family Association reports:

Politically correct public officials and media moguls call Islam a peaceful religion and say that most Muslims are moderate. However, the facts reported in the following surveys contradict such political correct suppositions:

  • Eighty one (81%) percent of respondents to Al Jazeera survey say they support ISIS. In a recent survey conducted by AlJazeera.net, the website for the Al Jazeera Arabic channel, respondents overwhelmingly support the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, with 81% voting “YES” on whether they approved of ISIS’s conquests in the region. The poll, which asked in Arabic,“Do you support the organizing victories of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS)?” has generated over 38,000 responses thus far, with only 19% of respondents voting “NO” to supporting ISIS.
  • Center for Security Policy “Poll of U.S. Muslims Reveals Ominous Levels Of Support For Islamic Supremacists’ Doctrine of Shariah, Jihad” was released on June 23, 2015. Nearly one-fifth of Muslim respondents said that the use of violence in the United States is justified in order to make shariah the law of this country. According to a new nationwide online survey (Below) of 600 Muslims living in the United States, significant minorities embrace supremacist notions that could pose a threat to America’s security and its constitutional form of government.   The numbers of potential jihadists among the majority of Muslims who appear not to be sympathetic to such notions raise a number of public policy choices that warrant careful consideration and urgent debate, including: the necessity for enhanced surveillance of Muslim communities; refugee resettlement, asylum and other immigration programs that are swelling their numbers and density; and the viability of so-called “countering violent extremism” initiatives that are supposed to stymie radicalization within those communities. Frank J. Gaffney, Jr., is the president of the Center for Security Policy.
  • Study finds that Sharia minded Imams recommended studying violence-positive texts in 84.5% of United States mosques. The study was conducted by Dr. Mordechai Kedar and David Yerushalmi, Esq. who are highly regarded experts on Sharia. David Yerushalmi, Esq. who runs the American Freedom Law Center with Robert J. Muise, Esq. is called The Man Behind the Anti-Shariah Movement … by the New York Times. Dr. Mordechai Kedar of Bar-Ilan University is an academic expert on the Israeli Arab population. Survey abstract: A random survey of 100 representative mosques in the U.S. was conducted to measure the correlation between Sharia adherence and dogma calling for violence against non-believers. Of the 100 mosques surveyed, 51% had texts on site rated as severely advocating violence; 30% had texts rated as moderately advocating violence; and 19% had no violent texts at all. Mosques that presented as Sharia adherent were more likely to feature violence-positive texts on site than were their non-Sharia-adherent counterparts. In 84.5% of the mosques, the imam recommended studying violence-positive texts. The leadership at Sharia-adherent mosques was more likely to recommend that a worshipper study violence-positive texts than leadership at non-Sharia-adherent mosques. Fifty-eight percent of the mosques invited imams known to promote violent jihad. The leadership of mosques that featured violence-positive literature was more likely to invite imams who were known to promote violent jihad than was the leadership of mosques that did not feature violence-positive literature on mosque premises.

Perhaps Donald Trump is saying what the American people are thinking?

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Rabbi Shot Dead while Walking to Synagogue with family in North Miami

Yesterday, visiting 60 year old Brooklyn orthodox Rabbi Joseph Raksin was shot dead by two young assailants in full view of his son-in-law and grandsons while walking to Shabbat services at Bais Menachem synagogue in North Miami.  It is alleged by Miami Dade police that it may have been a botched robbery attempt.  The irony is that orthodox Jews carry no money on Shabbat. One of the assailants fled on a bicycle, while the other, on foot. Miami police are endeavoring to track down the alleged perpetrators.  Last week an Orthodox synagogue, in the same vicinity,  Torah V’Emunah,  was vandalized with red swastikas with the word “Hamas”.  After yesterday’s murder of Rabbi Raksin , that led a  Jewish community activist  to suggest  there may have been a connection to  the current Operation Protective Edge pitting  Israel  against renewed  rocketing by  terrorist groups Hamas  and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad in Gaza.

miami synagogue hamas swastika

Swastika and Hams graffiti at North Miami-Dade Synagogue, Torah v’ emunah

The Miami Herald noted police and ADL comments about Rabbi Raksin’s murder as well as the shock of family and the Jewish community  in a report, “Two men sought in fatal shooting of Orthodox rabbi in Northeast Miami-Dade:

“At this time there is no indication of this being a hate crime,” said Miami-Dade police spokeswoman Elena Hernandez in a statement.

She said police are searching for two young male suspects, one of whom may have fled on a bicycle. The other may have run from the area on foot.

Late Saturday, Hava Holzhauer, the Anti-Defamation League Florida Regional Director, whose organization has been in close contact with Miami-Dade homicide investigators, said the crime “appears to be a robbery that went badly.”

“Currently no evidence has been brought to light that it was motivated by anti-Semitism,” said Holzhauer.

Said Holzhauer: “This is a terrible tragedy. While the motivation for this crime is still being investigated, nothing can justify the killing of an innocent man walking to his place of worship to pray on his holy day.”

Miami-Dade police have not commented on whether the shooting was connected to a robbery attempt on Raksin.

[…]

Late Saturday, members of Bais Menachem gathered outside the synagogue to talk to reporters about the shooting incident.

Raksin was walking ahead of his grandsons and son-in-law when he was shot, said Rabbi Moshe Druin.

“We are in utter shock,” Druin said.

Druin said community members ruled out a possibility of robbery because Orthodox Jewish men do not carry any money or possessions on Saturdays, the community’s Sabbath day.

“There hasn’t been a robbery on Sabbath for the past 35 years,” Druin said.

“It definitely is an anomaly,” Perutz Pinhas, another community member said of the shooting

However, note the comments by a Jewish community activist placing Rabbi Raksin’s murder in the context of local vandalism:

Another local Jewish community leader, Brian Siegal, director of the American Jewish Committee’s Miami and Broward Regional Office, said he believes Raksin’s shooting may be connected to the recent act of vandalism at the nearby Torah V’Emunah, an Orthodox synagogue, 1000 N.E. 174th St.

On July 28, police reported that swastikas were spray-painted on the front pillars of a Northeast Miami-Dade synagogue, which has left the local Jewish community on edge, especially amid the heightened tension between Israel and Palestinians over the conflict in Gaza.

Said Siegal: “Our deepest condolences to the [Raksin] family for this tragic loss. We are confident the police will take the matter seriously and will give them time to investigate. Coming so soon and so close to the synagogue that was vandalized last week with swastikas and pro-Hamas graffiti, obviously we’re suspicious that it’s linked, but that remains to be seen.”

If the two assailants are apprehended and interrogated, we may find out what the motivation was for the shooting death of Rabbi Raksin.  Given the attire of observant Orthodox Jewish men, it would be hard to mistake them.

Rabbi Raksin’s death comes on a weekend when Stand for Israel rallies are taking place in the Southeast on Sunday August 10th in Northern Alabama, Pensacola in Northwest Florida and on Monday, August 11th in Orlando, raising heightened security concerns.  We add our deepest rachmonis (compassion in Hebrew) to the extended family of the late Rabbi Raksin z”l.

RELATED ARTICLE: Miami Jewish community offers $50K for info on rabbi killing

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on the New English Review. The featured photo is of members of Bais Menachem Synagogue. North Miami-Dade, August 9, 2014. Source:  Miami-Herald.

“Zionism Unsettled” is a hatefilled document endorsed by Iran and David Duke

zionism unsettledA century ago the Presbyterian Church was among the leading Christian Zionists. These days a minority within  the Presbyterian Church USA is engaged in relentless delegitimization of Israel through a decade long BDS campaign. Their affiliate the Israel Palestine Mission Network (IPMN) released last month a 74 page guide, Zionism Unsettled (the Guide) that recently stoked the ire of the American Jewish community. A JNS.org story on the Zionism Unsettled guide cited Rabbi Noam Marans, the American Jewish Committee’s  Director of Intergroup and Interreligious Relations, who called it:

 A devastating distortion of Jewish and Israeli history, aimed at nothing less than eradicating the State of Israel.

The study guide is reminiscent of medieval Christian polemics against Judaism, with the authors claiming to know better than the Jewish community how Jews define themselves. This is another example of the ongoing effort to demonize Israel by a cadre of people who want to see the dismantlement of the Jewish state.

Here are some examples drawn from the Guide  that led to adverse criticism:

The Nakba (catastrophe) that befell the Palestinian people in the late 1940s should never have taken place. The Palestinian story is one of suffering at the hands of the international community, which authorized the division of Palestine in 1947, and at the hands of the Zionists who planned, organized, and implemented systematic ethnic cleansing.

Now, 65 years later, the Zionist quest for demographic control of the land in still underway – not only in the occupied territories, but within Israel itself.

Yesterday, the Guide received the endorsements of the Shiite Islamic Anti-Semitic Regime’s Press TV in Tehran and the American Anti-Semite, David Duke.  Duke has conducted outreach to Muslim Anti-Semitic groups in both Syria and Iran, to say nothing of his racist efforts here in the US.

Press TV’s report, “Zionism destroying lives of Palestinians, Jews” applauded the anti-Zionist Jewish Voices for Peace (JVP):

In a study guide on the Israeli regime released by the IPMN of Presbyterian Church (USA) last month, the authors argue that Jewish criticism of Zionism is on the rise, hailing the Jews who speak against the ‘supremacist’ movement.

“Contemporary voices are breaking the taboos that have stigmatized and punished critical examination of Zionism and its consequences,” says the study guide, calling on the brave Jews who criticize Zionism to resist a concerted effort by Pro-Zionist groups to silence them.

Press TV supported the Guide’s anti-Israel views:

A Presbyterian Church group has described Zionism as the single reason behind the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, saying it is destroying the lives of both Palestinians and Jewish communities across the world.

Dexter Van Zile, Christian Media Analyst for the Boston-based Middle East media watchdog, CAMERA, cited praise for the Guide from David Duke in an Algemeiner article:

In a major breakthrough in the worldwide struggle against Zionist extremism, the largest Presbyterian Church in the United States, the PC (USA), has issued a formal statement calling Zionism “Jewish Supremacism” — a term first coined and made popular by Dr. David Duke.

The IPMN website has additional acclamation from leftist Anti-Zionist Ben Gurion University Professor Neve Gordon (no relation) and former Palestinian National Council spokesman, Professor Rashid Khalidi, holder of the endowed Edward Said Chair on Modern Arab Studies  at Columbia University:

Gordon said in his blurb:

In my work I am inspired by the great Jewish prophets’ struggle for justice and freedom, while simultaneously I am often astounded how certain strains in Judaism and Christianity invoke the Bible in order to justify oppression and social wrongs in Israel/Palestine. Therefore I welcome the effort to emphasize a conception of Judaism and Christianity that espouses universalistic ethics – whereby all humans are imago dei – and to use it to expose injustices carried out in my homeland.

Khalidi said:

The denial of the rights of the Palestinians is largely driven by the exemption of Zionist ideology and its real-world implications from any serious scrutiny. Zionism Unsettled explains accurately and concisely why it is essential to look at the theological roots of Zionism, and how it has appealed to both Jews and Christians, in order to understand the true nature of the long ordeal suffered by the Palestinian people, as well as the real roots of so much of the strife in the Middle East.

Today, the Presbyterian Church (USA ) entered the fray with a news release in the wake of this kerfuffle over the Guide:

 “Our church has a long history of engaging many points of view when it comes to dialogue on critical issues facing the world around us — it’s who we are, part of our DNA,” said Linda Valentine, executive director of the Presbyterian Mission Agency. “There are likely as many differing opinions as there are Presbyterians — and, like many denominations, we don’t always agree.”

Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) policy calls for a negotiated settlement between Israel and Palestine and the right for each to exist within secure and recognized borders. The church has condemned acts of violence on both sides of the conflict, as well as the illegal occupation of Palestinian land by Israeli settlements. Our church has categorically condemned anti-Semitism in all its forms, including the refusal to acknowledge the legal existence of the State of Israel. At the same time, we believe that condemnation of injustices perpetrated in the name of the State of Israel, including the violation of human rights, does not constitute anti-Semitism.

In 2004, the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) formed the Israel Palestine Mission Network (IPMN) to help move the church toward the goal of a just peace in Israel/Palestine. The independent group — which speaks to the church and not for the church — recently published a study guide, Zionism Unsettled: A Congregational Study. The guide is intended to prompt discussion on the ever-changing and tumultuous issue of Israel-Palestine. The IPMN booklet was neither paid for nor published by the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

“There are myriad voices within congregations, and some would like to see the church go beyond that stance,” added Valentine. “But we remain guided by the policies of the General Assembly, seeking peace for Israelis and Palestinians alike.”

Then it quotes the head of the anti-Israel Jewish Voice for Peace:

There are a variety of voices and opinions within the Jewish community on this issue as well. Jewish Voice for Peace advocates for a peaceful and just solution among Palestinians and Israelis that respects human rights for all.

“We are in opposition to the settlements and occupation, and in favor of a true and just peace,” said Sydney Levy, director of advocacy for Jewish Voice for Peace. “And we are not alone in this — Jews, Christians, and Muslims join us in the prayer for peace.”

Is this the view of all members of the PCUSA?  Not by any means.  Robert Norvell, a Presbyterian Minister and counter-jihad activist in Jonesboro, Arkansas wrote in an email:

I believe 85% of all Presbyterians are adamantly opposed to this study. Is Israel perfect? No, but neither is the USA. But Israel is far superior morally to Hamas, Fatah and the other Muslim savages populating the neighborhood. They are our only reliable friends and allies in the region. I am embarrassed by the actions of a few Presbyterian extremists.

Dexter Van Zile in the JNS.org article corroborated Norvell’s comment saying:

The folks who lead this church in Louisville (site of Presbyterian Church USA’s headquarters) are quite willing to allow a small but vocal minority to demonize Israel and use the church’s brand-name to do it. They have behaved like this since 2004. Most of the denomination’s laity does not support these extremists, but their voice has not proven to be decisive.

When I wrote about a battle within the PCUSA over an anti-Israel BDS resolution at the annual conference in an American Thinker article in June 2006, “Divest Hate”, I noted who were among the Presbyterians opposing it:

Because grass roots opinion has been building among both pastors and their flocks against the leadership of the PCUSA on the divestment resolution. They want to eliminate hate and most importantly protect the religious freedoms of minority Christians in the Middle East from the real threat of Islamic fundamentalism. Their allies in this battle include leading grassroots Presbyterian groups like End Divestment Now!, founded by Jim Roberts.  Among vocal opponents of the BDS resolution was former CIA director, R. James Woolsey, a Presbyterian Elder,  and chairman of the Washington, DC-based foundation for Defense of Democracies..

Zionism Unsettled  is a hateful document that has had a spotlight thrown on it  by the endorsement of Iran’s Press TV and David Duke. As cited by Norvell, we trust that  a majority of Presbyterians will rise to the occasion and defeat another BDS resolution at the Church’s upcoming annual conference in June.  Whether they can remove the current PCUSA leadership and return to the moral high ground is another matter. Nonetheless, we wish the activist laity well in their battle to support the Jewish nation of Israel.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on The New English Review.