New Bill Would Strip Terrorists and Their Families of Citizenship

A bill submitted yesterday (Sunday) to the Knesset would strip terrorists and their families of their citizenship and permanent residency status.

The legislation, submitted by Yisrael Beiteinu faction chairman Robert Ilatov with the backing of his party leader, Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman, was crafted in cooperation with the Zionist movement Im Tirtzu in response to the murder of 23-year-old border policewoman Hadas Malka this past Friday in Jerusalem.

According to the bill, originally proposed by the late Yisrael Beiteinu MK David Rotem, anyone found to be directly or indirectly involved in a terror attack will forfeit his citizenship and residency permit, along with the citizenship and permits of his family.

The bill would provide family members an opportunity to prove their innocence, which if established would enable them to retain their status.

Ilatov explained that the rights afforded to Israeli citizens and residents enable them to perpetrate attacks with greater ease, and the bill would serve as a powerful deterrent to the recent increase of Israeli citizens and residents involved in acts of terror.

The bill also stipulates that those found to have been complicit in terrorist attacks will lose their socioeconomic benefits, such as welfare payments and subsidized burial expenses.

“We will no longer allow the absurd situation in which terrorists and their accomplices enjoy the rights and benefits of Israeli citizenship while working to destroy the country,” said Ilatov.

 “The purpose of the bill is to send a clear message: Whoever tries to harm the State of Israel will no longer be a part of it.”

Im Tirtzu CEO Matan Peleg called attention to “extravagant” benefits enjoyed by terrorists sitting in Israeli prisons at the expense of the Israeli taxpayer, as well as the payments transferred to the terrorists by the Palestinian Authority.

“Today there exists an extreme situation wherein terrorists know that it is more worthwhile for them to murder an Israeli than to steal his car,”said Peleg.

Peleg also noted that the “bill will limit the power of foreign agent organizations in Israel that work on behalf of foreign governments to defend terrorists and their families in court.”

New Law: Businesses to be Fined for Refusing Service to IDF Soldiers

A new law passed on Monday by the Knesset will subject businesses to a fine of up to 50,000 NIS for discriminating against uniformed IDF soldiers.

The legislation, submitted by Yisrael Beitenu Party Chairman, MK Robert Ilatov, was first drafted in the previous Knesset following an incident in 2010 where reservists were refused service at the Azad restaurant in Haifa.

The restaurant was filmed by the Zionist organization Im Tirtzu refusing service to uniformed IDF soldiers, and was forced by the Haifa Magistrate’s Court to pay a fine of 5,000 NIS. According to Im Tirtzu, there have since been a number of additional cases of discrimination against uniformed IDF soldiers, including in Jerusalem.

Yisrael Beitenu Party Chairman, MK Robert Ilatov, noted how until now there has been no explicit legislation prohibiting such acts of discrimination.

“In light of numerous cases of discrimination against uniformed soldiers, I decided that there needed to be legislation prohibiting this from occurring in public places, including restaurants, entertainment venues and educational institutions,” said Ilatov.

“Our uniformed men and women are not only deserving not to suffer from discrimination, but to be honored for their public service to the State of Israel.”

Matan Peleg, CEO of Im Tirtzu which was among the initiators of the law, said: “It is inconceivable that in the State of Israel, there are those who would discriminate against IDF soldiers. This is fueled by an anti-Zionist ideology that seeks to uproot the values of the state from within.”

“For generations upon generations, Jews have dreamed of having a Jewish army in the Land of Israel,” added Peleg. “Im Tirtzu, as the largest Zionist movement in Israel, is committed to continue safeguarding this dream.”

Emergency Knesset Committee on BDS Activity in Ben-Gurion University

Today (Wednesday), the Knesset Education Committee convened an emergency session to discuss the concern that Ben-Gurion University is promoting the BDS movement.

The committee was initiated by MKs Bezalel Smotrich (Jewish Home), Anat Berko (Likud) and Oded Forer (Yisrael Beiteinu) following the University’s recent promotion of a controversial workshop run by far-Left NGOs and sponsored by the European Union, which taught students how to effectively film protests.

Ben-Gurion University has come under fire in the past for its affiliation with anti-Zionism and BDS. In 2011, Israel’s Council for Higher Education recommended shutting down the University’s Department of Politics and Government unless changes were implemented.

Education Committee Chairman MK Yaakov Margi (Shas) said: “It is outrageous that such a phenomenon is occurring within Israel. We need to deal with whoever is promoting it.”

MK Bezalel Smotrich added: “You cannot talk about freedom of expression when [the professors] are signing in their name and in the name of the University on petitions against the State of Israel.”

“You cannot invoke freedom of expression on the one hand and protect the professors, yet not allow a member of the Board of Governors to express his opinion,” said Smotrich referring to an alleged attempt of the University to kick out a member of its Board of Governors who spoke out against this issue.

Ben-Gurion University President Rivka Carmi was also present at the discussion and rebuffed the claims that the University is involved in promoting BDS.

“The University is spearheading the battle against BDS,” said Carmi. “Again and again empty allegations arise [against the University]. The organizers of this discussion will not frighten us.”

Carmi also rejected the accusation that the University was trying to silence a member of its Board of Governors: “It has been said that we are silencing Michael Gross. We have listened to all of his comments. Michael Gross called me personally a ‘Kapo,’ and that’s the way he treats the University.”

Ahead of the discussion, the Zionist organization Im Tirtzu distributed reports citing a number of what it referred to as “anti-Israel” statements from Ben-Gurion University faculty, including public calls to boycott Israel.

“It is impossible to deny the involvement of Ben-Gurion University and its faculty in the delegitimization of Israel and IDF soldiers, and in the promotion of boycotts and international pressure against Israel,” said Im Tirtzu CEO Matan Peleg.

Peleg called on Carmi to “take responsibility” and immediately deal with this issue.

MK Tamar Zandberg (Meretz) shot back at Peleg, calling Im Tirtzu a group of “hooligans.”

“You have been pestering the Knesset for a long time now. Everyone works for you. You are engaging in a witch hunt,” said Zandberg.

At the conclusion of the session, Education Committee Chairman Margi remarked that he was pleased that the discussion convened. “Whoever calls to harm Israel, we must fight against them,” concluded Margi.


NAKBA NONSENSE: The Unholy Alliance Between Columbia University, the BDS Movement, and an Israeli Arab NGO

A Columbia University-sponsored project promotes extreme anti-Israel rhetoric and provides a platform for propagators of the BDS movement, according to a new report released by the Zionist organization Im Tirtzu.

The report focuses on “The Nakba & The Law” project, a joint initiative of Columbia University’s Center for Palestine Studies and the Israeli NGO Adalah launched in 2016 that features blog-style posts on the topic of the Nakba, the Arabic word for “catastrophe” that is used by Palestinian Arabs to refer to the establishment of the State of Israel.

According to Im Tirtzu’s report, of the 32 authors listed on the project’s website, 17 openly support the BDS movement, 3 are affiliated with BDS organizations and 6 work for the “radical anti-Israel” NGO Adalah, which accuses Israel of committing war crimes, defends terrorists in court and works in international institutions to isolate Israel.

Of the 6 authors who have no public affiliation with the BDS movement or Adalah, continues the report, there is no shortage of extreme anti-Israel rhetoric, including accusations of apartheid, massacres and the equation of the Nakba to the Holocaust.

Among the authors listed in the report are Columbia Professor Katherine Franke, also one of the project’s editors, who co-authored a report defending the Black Lives Matter platform that accuses Israel of committing a genocide against the Palestinians; Professor Amahl Bishara, who has openly defended several terrorists, including Rasmea Odeh who masterminded the murder of two Israeli students; and Randa Wahbe, who has publicly advocated on behalf of two senior officials of the terrorist group, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.

According to “The Nakba & The Law” website, one of the project’s sponsors is The Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research, an organization that answers to the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science and is heavily funded by the Dutch government.

Matan Peleg, CEO of the Im Tirtzu movement that has been a vocal critic of the Nakba, said: “The Nakba is a hypocritical attempt to rewrite history and to undermine the very existence of the State of Israel. This project is not only an insidious attempt to blacken the Jewish State, but is an example of the unholy alliance between anti-Zionist Israeli NGOs, European governments and the BDS movement.”

“It is important to unapologetically call the Nakba what it is: nonsense,” said Peleg alluding to his organization’s “Nakba Nonsense” booklet and audiobook.

Ilan Sinelnikov, President of Students Supporting Israel that has been active in combating the anti-Israel bias on American universities, responded to the report and said: “This shameful anti-Israel project only emphasizes the dire situation at Columbia University and campuses throughout the US. It is shameful that such a university is sponsoring a project that provides a platform to the BDS movement, whose goal is to destroy the Jewish state.”

Sinelnikov concluded: “We are calling on the Columbia University administration to act immediately to remove this project and I am sure that our pro-Israel voices on the ground will be heard.”

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Amid Growing Incitement, Haredis Will Hold Ceremony Commemorating Fallen Haredi Soldiers

The Likud’s haredi faction will be holding a special memorial ceremony this Monday on Yom HaZikaron, Israel’s Memorial Day, commemorating the haredi members of the IDF who were killed in Israel’s wars.

Haredis, or ultra-orthodox Jews, generally abstain from IDF service and those who enlist often face incitement and violence from extremists within their communities.

This is the second year that members of the haredi faction of the Likud are organizing the ceremony at the Ponevezh Cemetery in Bnei Brak, where a number of fallen haredi soldiers are buried. Last year, the ceremony was interrupted by Haredi extremists who attempted to prevent the ceremony from taking place and proceeded to chase away the majority of the participants.

The ceremony will be attended by Likud Minister Ayoob Kara, Chairman of the Likud’s haredi faction Yaakov Vider, representatives of the IDF’s Military Rabbinate, IDF soldiers and wounded veterans, and bereaved families.

The Zionist organization Im Tirtzu also announced its plans to attend the ceremony, which according to the organization represents a true bridge between different factions of Israeli society.

Chairman of the Likud’s haredi faction and organizer of the ceremony, Yaakov Vider, noted the relevance and importance of the event: “Specifically now when there is a wave of anti-IDF incitement and violence from extremists within the haredi sector, there is growing importance to remember the haredi soldiers who gave their lives fighting for Israel.”

“I am thankful to the Israeli government and to Im Tirtzu for the help,” continued Vider, “and call on the Israeli public to attend the ceremony and honor the memory of our holy brothers who fell fighting for Israel.”

Matan Peleg, CEO of the Im Tirtzu movement that has been a leading advocate for the integration of all factions of Israeli society in the IDF, said: “We salute the brave haredi soldiers of the IDF and together will remember those who gave their lives fighting for the country. These soldiers represent the very essence of unity and serve as a prime example of what it means to be a scholar and a warrior.”

The ceremony will take place at 3:30 pm on Monday, May 1st, at the Ponevezh Cemetery in Bnei Brak.

CHAOS IN THE NEGEV: “The south of Israel has turned into the wild west”

A petition signed by over 2,000 IDF reservists was sent last night (Saturday) to IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkot, calling on him to prevent the theft of military equipment from IDF bases and training grounds in the Negev.

According to the petition, the theft of military equipment in the Negev by members of the Bedouin community is a widespread phenomenon that occurs on a regular basis and endangers the well-being of IDF soldiers and the citizens of Israel.

The petition was initiated by Sergeant First Class (res.) Alon Malik, who experienced the thefts firsthand last month while serving in reserve duty in the IDF’s Tze’elim base in the Negev.

The petition, signed by IDF reserve soldiers and high-ranking officers including captains, lieutenant colonels and colonels, states: “We, thousands of soldiers and officers in active reserve duty, turn to you with the request to stop the dangerous, outrageous and shameful phenomenon of equipment theft from training grounds in the south, which poses a substantive risk to the State of Israel’s security. In recent years, this phenomenon in which members of the Bedouin community steal from IDF bases and surrounding training grounds has intensified. Almost every week, and at times on a daily basis, thieves arrive on ATVs to training grounds and loot everything they can get their hands on: tactical vests, binoculars, night vision goggles, sensitive maps and combat equipment, which is then sold to hostile elements and used to harm soldiers and the citizens of Israel.”

The petition continues: “The day is not far off when one of these thieves will not be satisfied by stealing personal and military equipment, and will decide to take it one step further, heaven forbid, which will claim the lives of the training soldiers and/or of the citizens of the country.”

Matan Peleg, CEO of the Zionist organization Im Tirtzu that joined together with the reservists, said: “This is an increasing and troubling phenomenon and we are calling on the Chief of Staff and the IDF chiefs to work immediately to change military policy on this matter. Appropriate tools must be provided to the soldiers in order to prevent the recurrence of these serious cases.”

Peleg added: “The south of Israel has turned into the wild west and this free-for-all must be stopped immediately. Im Tirtzu will continue working to strengthen and defend IDF soldiers with all the means at its disposal.”

Alon Malik, the initiator of the petition, said: “Us reservists who stop our daily routines in order to defend the country, find ourselves helpless in the face of procedures and orders that make it clear to us that the IDF prefers not to deal with this plague of thefts.”

“Thefts from bases in the south occur on a regular basis,” continued Malik. “With the absence of a clear and significant change in IDF policy, this phenomenon will only intensify and it won’t be long until this ability to roam free in IDF training grounds will lead to the loss of life.”

[watch] Far-Left and Arab Students Disrupt Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat’s Hebrew U Lecture

Video credit: David Kozlovsky

Far-Left and Arab students disrupted Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat’s lecture last night (Wednesday) at Hebrew University, holding signs and shouting derogatory slogans at the mayor.

Once the lecture began, a number of protesters stood up and began to shout at the mayor, referring to Jerusalem as an occupied city.

“We will not bow our heads to the violence and incitement of the radical Left,” said Barkat. “It is unfortunate that those who claim to promote the values of freedom of expression try to silence those who don’t agree with them.”

Once the protesters were removed, Barkat delivered his speech as planned and added: “There is one law in Jerusalem – for Jews and Arabs alike. We will continue to work, without prejudice or exemptions, to ensure law and order in Israel’s united capital.”

Barkat’s lecture was delivered within the framework of Im Tirtzu’s Seminars for Zionist Thought, the largest Zionist academic extra-curricular program in Israel.

The Seminars for Zionist Thought is the flagship academic program of the Zionist advocacy group Im Tirtzu, which was established to impart pro-Israel and Zionist knowledge to Israeli students and to combat the growing phenomenon of anti-Zionism in Israeli academic curriculum.

Im Tirtzu CEO Matan Peleg said that this hostile disruption crossed a red line and called on the Education Minister Naftali Bennett to demand from the university president to take action against the protesters.

“What happened tonight was a disgraceful attempt to silence free speech,” said Peleg. “Im Tirtzu has never been deterred by the radical-Left and will never be deterred by them in the future. We will continue running the Seminars for Zionist Thought on campuses throughout the country and will continue to provide students with pro-Israel knowledge from the leading Zionist lectures in Israel.”

Outrage after Arab MKs Equate Chemical Attack in Syria to IDF Operations in Gaza

MK Zoabi: Israel “slaughtered children and babies in Gaza”

MK Haneen Zoabi (Joint List) was booted off a radio program the other day after a stormy interview in which she equated the recent chemical attack in Syria to IDF operations in Gaza.

The heated exchange took place on Israel Radio’s “HaMaznon” program, after host Yoav Krakovsky asked MK Zoabi for her views on the world’s inaction in Syria.

Zoabi responded by asking Krakovsky if his “conscience and professional integrity only exists in a case when discussing children that the IDF didn’t kill,” and proceeded to accuse the IDF of perpetrating war crimes in Gaza.

“Why didn’t you interview me when you slaughtered children and babies in Gaza?,” asked Zoabi. “[Assad] has been a criminal for five years since the start of the revolution in Syria, but there is another criminal – the Israeli army, and their place is in the International Court of Justice in Hague.”

Zoabi’s remarks sparked outrage from one of the show’s guest hosts, who said that he can no longer remain silent when MK Zoabi is lying and turning the Israeli army, which is the most moral army in the world, into the army of Assad’s murderers.

“Don’t you dare preach about morality,” retorted a livid Zoabi, “I don’t want to hear you.” Zoabi was soon kicked off the program after shouting at the hosts to “shut up.”

Zoabi’s remarks came a day after Joint List Chairman Ayman Odeh drew sharp condemnation for drawing a parallel between the situation of the murdered children in Syria and the children in Gaza.

“My heart aches for the children murdered in Syria in the same way that it feels shame for the children murdered in Yemen and in Gaza too,” Odeh said yesterday from the Knesset plenum.

Im Tirtzu CEO Matan Peleg responded to the comments and said: “The radical remarks of Joint List MKs Zoabi and Odeh against the State of Israel and IDF soldiers prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that this is a party that seeks to damage the relations between Jews and Arabs in Israel.”

Peleg added: “These MKs are fueled by hatred and extremism and have no interest in serving the needs of the Arab sector, and this has always been the case.”

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No More Free Breaks for Anti-Israel NGO’s

A new bill seeks to cancel the property tax discount provided by the Israeli government to organizations that receive the majority of their funding from foreign governments.

The bill, proposed in the closing days of the Knesset’s winter session by Internal Affairs Committee Chairman MK David Amsalem (Likud), seeks to end the phenomenon in which organizations that act against the state by means of foreign government funding receive government benefits.

According to the bill, the exemption of property tax is a benefit that the state grants to organizations that work in service of the public, and these organizations “clearly represent foreign interests that are contrary to Israel’s interests.”

There are some 25 organizations registered in Israel that receive the majority of their funding from foreign governments, including the far-Left NGOs Breaking the Silence and B’Tselem, which accuse the IDF of committing war crimes and call for international pressure on Israel.

Other such NGOs include Zochrot, which accuses Israel of “ethnic cleansing” and works to eliminate the Jewish character of the State Israel by promoting the resettlement of millions of Palestinians in Israel, and Israel Social TV, which provides a platform for the BDS movement.

The bill was drafted in cooperation with the Zionist organization Im Tirtzu, which has been one of the leading voices opposing the intervention of foreign governments in Israel’s internal affairs.

Should the bill pass, the State of Israel is expected to save millions of shekels, which according to Im Tirtzu could be used for worthy causes that would benefit the Israeli public.

MK Amsalem said that “it is inconceivable that organizations acting deliberately against the State of Israel should receive gifts from the state that are then used to harm it.”

“If they want someone to pay their property taxes, they can turn to the foreign governments that funnel them enormous sums of money. We will use the tens of millions of shekels that will be saved to assist the weak sectors of society.”

Im Tirtzu CEO Matan Peleg, who was involved in promoting the bill, welcomed the proposal and said that it is absurd for the Israeli taxpayer to subsidize the property taxes of anti-Israel NGOs that serve the interests of foreign governments.

“This bill conveys an important message to those seeking to harm the Jewish and democratic identity of the State of Israel by means of foreign government funding,” said Peleg. “We will work to see to it that the State of Israel will not fund or subsidize those seeking its destruction.”

Outrage over Israeli High School’s Simulation of IDF Soldiers Abusing Palestinians

A classroom exercise at Tel-Aviv’s historic Herzliya Hebrew Gymnasium high school sparked controversy after it was reported last Thursday that students were forced to participate in a simulation of IDF activities at checkpoints in which “Palestinians” were abused by “IDF soldiers.”

According to the report published by the Israeli news outlet Walla!, students in the school’s 11th grade International Relations track were met at the entrance to their floor with two makeshift checkpoints manned by students simulating IDF soldiers. The students were forced to wait on long lines while “soldiers” proceeded to verbally abuse and refuse entry to some of the students.

The simulation drew sharp criticism from IDF reservists, wounded IDF veterans and pro-IDF activists who, by the initiative of the Zionist organization Im Tirtzu, organized a demonstration today (Sunday) outside the school.

The demonstrators were joined by MKs Oded Forer (Yisrael Beiteinu) and Oren Hazan (Likud) who voiced their opposition to the “anti-IDF” simulation.

“This simulation is outrageous,” said MK Forer. “It is time for Education Minister Bennett to end this situation in which some principals go about doing whatever they please. Red lines have been crossed a long time ago.”

Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman also came out against the simulation during a live question and answer session on his Facebook page and said that such content is “fitting to be taught at a school named after [Hamas founder] Sheikh Ahmed Yassin and not in the Herzliya Gymnasium.”

Adva Zeltzer, head of the school’s International Relations track and activist in the far-Left Israeli NGO Zochrot that works to “promote acknowledgement and accountability for the ongoing injustices of the Nakba,” said that the simulation was voluntary and was initiated by the students.

However, students have come out and said that they were forced to participate in the simulation or risk receiving poor grades.

The school’s principal Dr. Zeev Degani backed the simulation and said that it was a “wonderful lesson that presented both sides. I am proud of my students.” Degani made headlines several years ago after forbidding students to wave the Israeli flag on school grounds and advocating to refuse IDF service.

Liran Baruch, a wounded IDF veteran who lost his eye during an operation in Kalandiya, was present at the demonstration and wore his uniform for the first time since his injury. Baruch said: “I was wounded because ‘human rights’ organizations instigated riots and violence in Kalandiya that resulted in me losing my eye. I didn’t shoot because I didn’t want to accidentally harm innocents.”

“It pains me to see the school’s administration blackening the name of IDF soldiers,” added Baruch.

Im Tirtzu’s National Branch Coordinator Tom Nisani took part in the demonstration and said: “We are here today protesting this disgraceful act of contempt towards IDF soldiers. We are calling on the Education Ministry to act immediately to end this political exploitation of students.”

“This is inappropriate and certainly not educational,” concluded Nisani.