ANTI-ZIONIST GROUP DEMANDS COLLEGES REVEAL STAFF TIES TO ISRAEL

March 7, 2022

An anti-Zionist group in the Netherlands is using a freedom of information request pressure Dutch universities into revealing whether any of their staff members have ties to Israel.

The freedom of information request was filed by “The Rights Forum” group, and also seeks to identify what ties and staff relations exist with Jewish communities and organizations such as the Simon Wiesenthal Centre.

The Chief Rabbi of the Netherlands, Binyomin Jacobs, Chief Rabbi (NL), who also heads up the European Jewish Association’s Committee for Combatting Antisemitism, condemned the The Rights Forum, saying the information request “reeks of antisemitism”.

“The Rights Forum is well known to me. Let us be clear, they want to know any Israeli, any Israeli link and any Jewish people in universities in Holland. The clear inference is that some shadowy Zionist or Jewish cabal is operating in the Dutch university system. This reeks of antisemitism, but it comes as no surprise to me given this group’s reputation.”

“No. What really concerns me is the number of universities that were so compliant with such a transparently antisemitic request. It reminds us that most mayors cooperated during the occupation to pass on the names of their Jewish citizens to the Germans.”

“The difference between anti-Zionism and antisemitism is now wafer thin. In all my many years in Holland I can seldom remember such a toxic environment for Jews. This is an appalling submission to the base instincts of an openly hostile group towards Israel, the world’s only Jewish State.”

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Meeting with Ambassador of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the EU, H.E. Madam Emina Merdan, and the Mission's Minister-Counselor, Ms. Miranda Sidran

Yesterday, the European Jewish Association has had the honour of welcoming at its headquarters the Ambassador of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the European Union, H.E. Madam Emina Merdan, and the Mission’s Minister-Counselor, Ms. Miranda Sidran.

Her Excellency has presented the EJA’s Chairman, Rabbi Menachem Margolin, the original of the Rosh Hashanah congratulatory letter received earlier from H.E. Dr. Denis Zvizdić, Chairman of the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina. H.E. Madam Ambassador has also expressed and conveyed H.E. Mr. Chairman’s condolences regarding the Wednesday shooting near a synagogue in the German city of Halle, resulting in the tragic deaths of two people nearby.

During the meeting, we have in particular discussed Bosnia and Herzegovina: the country’s tragic recent past, its modern European aspirations, the multicultural and multi-religious nature of its society as well as the local Jewish community, having its roots in the Sephardic Jews fleeing from Spain more than five centuries ago.

The Jewish community of Bosnia and Herzegovina, especially if compared to many others throughout Europe, is quite special – there have never been any ghettos here, with the Jews always having been considered an integral part of the local society, with no inherent Antisemitism carried by their neighbours and compatriots. While the modern Bosnian Jewish community is much smaller than it used to be, it is very active, while the heritage of Ladino is carefully preserved. In turn, established in 1997, the Interreligious Council of Bosnia and Herzegovina unites representatives of the Catholic and Orthodox Christians, Muslims and Jews – working together to build a better future.

Potential cooperation between the Mission and the EJA has also been discussed – both sides have expressed sincere interest in further dialogue and carefully exploring such possibilities of collaboration on topics of common interest and concern. We are very grateful to Her Excellency for this visit and wish H.E. Ambassador Merdan the best of luck and much energy in her important work.

Rabbis Decide to Unilateraly Sell Chometz of Europe’s Jews

At the request of European rabbis, Israel’s Chief Rabbi David Lau is adding a clause in the chametz sale contract that will be selling the chometz of all Jews in the diaspora, even if they didn’t do it themselves.
The Rabbinical Center of Europe (RCE) recently conducted a practical Halacha class as part of their virtual shiurim channel on the topic of Erev Pesach falling on Shabbos.
Chief Rabbi of Israel David Lau told the rabbis that “the Chief Rabbinate of Israel will include chametz of Jews in the Diaspora who are not aware of the chametz sale contract, as per the request of the European rabbis.”
Rabbi Lau praised the initiative of the Rabbinical Center to provide the translation of the European Jewish community chametz sale in English, French and Hebrew online.
The shiurim channel was launched in memory of Rabbi Binyamin Wolff OBM, Chabad Shliach in Hanover, Germany, who passed away this past year. The virtual classes provide the continent’s rabbis a way to connect the study at a time when travel is restricted due to the pandemic.
During the Shiur, Rabbi Lau answered many questions, among them the issue of selling chametz to a non-Jew. Rabbi Lau consented to the rabbis’ request and promised that the text of the chametz sale contract appointed by the Israeli Chief Rabbinate will include a clause stating that the sale will also apply to every Jew who has chametz in the Diaspora.
“As the deadly pandemic has taken toll of many lives, the Shiurim channel turned into the current replacement for the various conferences and professional seminars held by the RCE during the year for rabbis in various cities across Europe,” said Rabbi Menachem Margolin, Chairman of the RCE.
Director-General of the RCE Rabbi Aryeh Goldberg stated his satisfaction with the variety of classes and practical Halachic shiurim that were delivered and will be delivered within the framework of the Shiurim channel.
But it isn’t only with selling chametz that the Rabbinical Center of Europe is occupied with.
In collaboration with the European Jewish Association, 100,000 packages of Shmura Matzah are being distributed to hundreds of communities across Europe. Each kit was professionally wrapped and packaged to prevent the Matzot from cracking.
The logistical operation was conducted under the supervision of the RCE’s Deputy Director-General, Rabbi Yosef Bainhaker, and Rabbi Yehuda Reichman, head of the BASSAD organization which executed the project with great devotion.
The Matzos were distributed to over 560 European Jewish communities. The kits were delivered to Rabbis and community leaders who will distribute them just before Pesach.
This particular operation had a goal of ensuring kezayit size of handmade Shmurah Matzah will reach all Jews in the various communities of Europe. Working with postal and government officials, they were successful in ensuring that the sealed packages arrive despite the pandemic.
This is not the first logistical operation conducted by the Rabbinical Center of Europe together with Rabbi Reichman. Before Sukkos and Chanukah this past year, the organization helped distribute the four species and menorahs across Europe to hundreds of families.
“Due to high public demand for matzah, it was decided that despite the heavy expenses involved, an effort would be made to supply any quantity of matzah that would be required to the various countries ensuring that there would be matzah everywhere,” said Rabbi Margolin.
In addition, a special kit has been distributed for the children of the communities, enabling Rabbis and Rebbetzins to teach the children about the Mitzvos of Pesach, beginning from the general observance of Pesach till the practical details of each Mitzvah.
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Europese joden reageren met afschuw op afbeelding gele ster tijdens coronabetoging

“Ik heb moeite om de gelijkenis te zien tussen gevraagd worden om een vaccin te nemen tijdens een pandemie, of de gevolgen te dragen als je dat niet doet, en tussen het systematisch uitmoorden van zes miljoen Joden in vernietigingskampen, gaskamers of massale schietpartijen aan open graven”, aldus Margolin.

“Het maakt me ziek om te bedenken hoe weinig mensen de pijn begrijpen die dergelijke spandoeken veroorzaken, en hoe weinig mensen echt begrip en waardering hebben voor de enorme omvang en magnitude van de holocaust. Aan degenen die vandaag marcheerden met een grote gele ster, zeg ik dit: doe dit niet”, vertelt hij. “Hoe je je ook voelt over de coronabeperkingen, niemand tatoeëert jouw armen, niemand drijft jou op veewagens, en niemand wil dat jij, jouw familie en jouw geliefden sterven. Zorg er in de eerste plaats voor dat je kennis vergaart en dat je weet wat deze gele ster werkelijk vertegenwoordigt”, aldus de rabbi.

https://www.hln.be/binnenland/europese-joden-reageren-met-afschuw-op-afbeelding-gele-ster-tijdens-coronabetoging~aff4335f/?referrer=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.google.be%2F

Red Lines Follow-Up, Meeting with Hungarians High Representatives

We were honoured today to welcome a very-high level delegation of Hungarian diplomats to EJA HQ.

It is not every day that a State Secretary for Civil and State Affairs and 2 Ambassadors to Belgium and the EU deem Jewish Issues important enough to come as a triumvirate and spend over 2 hours with us in a warm, productive and very co-operative meeting.

We thank Mr. Vince Szalay-Bobrovniczky , State Secretary for Civil and Social Affairs at the Office of Prime Minister of Hungary , H.E. Mr. Tamás Iván Kovács, Hungary’s Ambassador to the Kingdom of Belgium and the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg,  H.E. Mr. Olivér Varhelyi, Hungary’s Ambassador to the European Union, Permanent Representative for their time.

We are delighted to announce that this high ranking diplomatic and governmental team has agreed to take back our Jewish Red lines to the Hungarian Government and Parliament with an intention to adopt them. We are also delighted to report the unwavering commitment of all to safeguarding, growing and enriching Jewish Life in Hungary.

 

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