Letter From Israel : Jewish Refugees – The expulsion of Jews from Arab lands part 1 – Written by Adv. Charles Abelsohn

Letter from Israel

29 November 2015


Hi all,


The Letter from Israel has not ceased publication. I intended this Letter to be sent towards the end of November 2014. However, the research for this Letter took far longer than anticipated. The Letter covers a subject which is important, regretfully is largely unknown, is much, much  longer than usual, does not make for easy reading but I respectfully suggest is compulsory reading. Simply, it is the story of Jews from Arab countries.


I offer no excuse for the length of this Letter. The story and history of Jews in Arab lands has been overlooked for far too long and needs to be told and retold.


First, I set out UN Resolution 181 of 29 November 1947..


I continue by explaining why I wanted to issue this letter towards the end of November 2014 but settled for end November 2015.


This is followed by the recommended legislation drafted by the Arab League in 1947.


I provide a repeat of a description of the place of Jews and indeed other non-Moslems minorities in Moslem society.


Then follows a general history of Jews living in Arab lands and, specifically, the story of a traveler (non-Jewish) visiting Morocco in 1805.


I deal in some detail but generally with the events of 1947 to about 1972 and the results.


I have a short paragraph estimating the value of property abandoned by the Jewish exodus.


I then set out a short history of Jews of, and “the last days of the Jews” and pogroms in, Iraq, Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Yemen and Algeria. It should be noted that many of the pogroms were carried out well before the UN Resolution of 29 November 1947 which recommended the partition of Palestine into a Jewish State and an Arab State.


I add a short note on a riot in Tunisia in 1928.


I have added a short paragraph on the relatively unknown Jewish community of Bahrain.


I end with two amazing but forgotten stories: the rescue of the Jews of Yemen (and Iraq) carried out by Alaska Airlines and the almost completely unknown and totally forgotten story of how the small and mainly Jewish Algerian underground facilitated one of the first, if not the first, Allied victories of the Second World War.


With regard to Palestinian refugees and Jewish refugees from Arab countries, two important sentences are required.


The number of Arabs (not yet Palestinians) leaving Palestine/Israel in 1947/1948 is estimated to be between 350,000 and 550,000.


The number of Jews leaving Arab lands is known to be about 850,000 of which about 650,000 left for Israel (which had a population of about 700,000 at that time) and most of the remainder left for France.


I learnt much on this journey into the history of the Jews in Arab countries. You may wish to follow up on your own into this largely unknown but important history.


For my research, I have in the main read and used articles in the internet and the Jewish Virtual Library, using the Wikipedia to substantiate my findings. My thanks to the unknown authors of so many articles on Jews in Arab lands.


As usual, you are welcome, indeed encouraged, to distribute all or part of this Letter to your friends and family.


If I do not succeed in sending another letter from Israel in the near future, then I send both Hanukka greetings and Seasons greetings with my wishes for a happy, healthy, peaceful and successful new year.


As always, shalom from Israel.



Charles M. Abelsohn

Truth be Told

November 29, 1947: the UN General Assembly adopts Resolution 181.

On November 29, 1947, the UN General Assembly voted in favor of a resolution, no 181, which adopted the plan recommending the partition of Palestine into an Arab State and a Jewish State. 33 states voted in favor of the resolution and 13 voted against. 10 states abstained.

It was a historic resolution that expressed the then-prevailing view of most of the major states of the United Nations, which voted in favor of it. It provided for two states for two peoples. All Arab States voted against.

The adoption of the partition resolution by the General Assembly was received by the Jewish community with great joy and thousands went out to the streets to celebrate, even though it was clear that the Arab states would embark on both measures against Jewish communities in Arab lands as well as a relentless war against the realization of the plan to establish a Jewish state. This Letter relates to the fate of the Jewish communities in Arab lands.

November 30: Commemorating the expulsion of Jews from Arab lands

Who Is a Refugee? “A refugee is someone who has been forced to flee his or her country because of persecution, war, or violence. A refugee has a well founded fear of persecution for reasons of race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group. Most likely, they cannot return home or are afraid to do so.” —United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Definition

The story of Jews forced out of Arab countries after 1948 is not well known. Approximately 850,000 Jews became refugees. Sometimes referred to as “the forgotten refugees,” they never received recognition or help from the international community or compensation for their great losses. No international body, similar to UNRWA formed to assist the Palestinian Arabs, recognized them or assisted them. It was left to the relatively poor 700,000 Israelis to absorb the equally poor 650,000 Jews from Arab countries.

On June 23, 2014 the Knesset adopted a law which designates November 30th as an annual, national day of commemoration for the 850,000 Jewish refugees who were displaced from Arab countries and Iran in the 20th century. I wanted to issue this letter on or about November 30th 2014; the extensive research resulted in this letter being issued one year later but nevertheless still about November 30th  (2015).

Still, why November 30th?  United Nations General Assembly Resolution 181 called for the partition of the British-ruled Palestine Mandate into a Jewish state and an Arab state (note: NOT a Palestinian state). It was approved on November 29, 1947 (with ALL Arab states opposing). Jews had lived in the Arab lands for thousands of years, and many of their communities preceded the advent of Islam. But in the 20th century, with the rise of Arab nationalism and the conflict in Palestine, the new Arab regimes began a campaign of massive violations of the rights of their Jewish citizens. Arab states expropriated property of their native Jews, and denaturalized, expelled, arrested, tortured and murdered many of them. To a large extent, 30th November 1947 marks the beginning of the end of Jewish communities in Arab lands.

The narratives of the departure of the Jews from Arab lands differ in detail by country, and from one family to another, but in the substance the stories are similar.

Draft Resolution Recommended  by the Arab League to its Arab State Members to take effect on 29 November 1947

The Arab League (founded in 1945) enacted measures to marginalize and persecute Jewish citizens in their states, even though some of the Jewish communities were 2,000 years old and predated the Arab-Muslim conquest.

The following is the draft resolution recommended  by the Arab League to its Arab state members to take effect in Arab states on the adoption on 29 November 1947 of the Palestine Partition Resolution providing for “a Jewish State and an Arab State” (the terminology used in the United Nations Resolution).  This is the reason for Israel designating 30th November as the day of commemoration for Jews displaced in Arab countries.


  1. “Beginning with November 28, 1947, all Jewish citizens of (Name of Arab Country) will be considered as members of the Jewish minority State of Palestine and will have to register with the authorities of the region wherein they reside, giving their names, the exact number of members in their families, their addresses, the names of their banks and the amounts of their deposits in these banks. This formality is to be accomplished within seven days.
  2. Beginning with (November 28, 1947), bank accounts of Jews will be frozen. These funds will be utilized in part or in full to finance the movement of resistance to Zionist ambitions in Palestine.
  3. Beginning with (November 28, 1947), only Jews who are subjects of foreign countries will be considered as “neutrals”. These will be compelled either to return to their countries, with a minimum of delay, or be considered as Arabs and obliged to accept active service with the Arab army.
  4. Jews who accept active service in Arab armies or place themselves at the disposal of those armies, will be considered as “Arabs”.
  5. Every Jew whose activities reveal that he is an active Zionist will be considered as a political prisoner and will be interned in places specifically designated for that purpose by police authorities or by the Government. His financial resources, instead of being frozen, will be confiscated.
  6. Any Jew who will be able to prove that his activities are anti-Zionist will be free to act as he likes, provided that he declares his readiness to join the Arab armies.
  7. The foregoing (para.6) does not mean that those Jews will not be submitted to paragraphs 1 and 2 of this law.”


Aspects of the Arab League draft resolution were adopted by individual Arab governments. The human rights lawyer and Canadian ex-Justice minister Irwin Cotler has called them ”Nuremberg-style measures.”


The Status of Non-Muslim Minorities Under Islamic Rule – Dhimmitude

This is a repeat of a note I sent on 22 August 2014. It summarizes Jewish and non-Moslem life in Islamic countries.

The term Dhimmitude is derived from Dhimmi, which means a non-Muslim living in an Islamic country. The Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary has defined it as “a person living in a region overrun by Muslim conquest who was accorded a protected status and allowed to retain his original faith”.  According to orthodox Islamic law (Shari’ah), those who are qualified for Dhimmi status within the Muslim society are the free (i.e non-slave) Christians, Jews, and Zoroastrians. Adherents of other religions, as well as those without religion, are asked to convert to Islam; if they refuse, they are to be forced to convert.  However, historically, adherents of Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism, and other religions, have lived as Dhimmis within Muslim states.

According to the Qur’an and hadith (oral tradition), Jizyah tax must be paid by the dhimmis as a sign of submission. Specifically, it is the TAXING of non-muslims in exchange for tolerating their presence AND as a coercive means of converting conquered remnants to Islam. This gives dhimmis some legal protection in return. Dhimmis usually are not allowed to carry arms to protect themselves, serve in the army or government, display symbols of their faith, build or repair places of worship, they must wear distinctive clothing which includes the Zunar (a kind of belt) wherever they go, etc. Many of these laws are still enforced today in Muslim countries, like Egypt and Saudi Arabia, which enforce various aspects of Shari’ah. If the conquered do not wish to pay or convert, their fate may very well be slavery (under which, rape is permitted) or death. Dhimmis are forbidden to ride horses and camels, and may only ride donkeys, and only on packsaddles.

The Jews were dhimmis. The dhimmi is a second-class citizen. If they [the ruling Muslims] tolerate him it is a calculated step, whether because they cherish the hope of converting him or for material reasons, because they force him to shoulder virtually the entire burden of taxation. They provide a place for him in the state, but not without reminding him continually of his inferior status. They prevent him from occupying high positions in society, and if by merit or intrigue he manages to climb to such places everything conspires to relegate him once again to obscurity. If the dhimmi acquires an independent legal status or privileges associated with his personal position, if he is permitted even his own courts, it is only because he cannot share with the Faithful the advantages of their own justice, which is essentially religious. In no case is the dhimmi the equal of a Muslim. He is condemned to social inequality and forms part of a despised caste: inequality so far as his personal rights are concerned, inequality in taxation, and inequality before the law, since his testimony is neither accepted by the Muslim courts of justice nor even, for the same minor crime, is the punishment the same … No social relationship, no fellowship is possible between Muslims and dhimmis.

A Very Short History of Jews in Arab Lands




“Jews who lived in Islamic countries were well-treated by the Arabs.”


While Jewish communities in Islamic countries generally fared somewhat better overall than those in Christian lands in Europe, Jews were no strangers to persecution and humiliation among the Arabs. As Princeton University historian Bernard Lewis has written: “The Golden Age of equal rights was a myth”.

Muhammad, the founder of Islam, traveled to Medina in 622 A.D. to attract followers to his new faith. When the Jews of Medina refused to recognize Muhammad as their Prophet, two of the major Jewish tribes were expelled. In 627, Muhammad’s followers killed between 600 and 900 of the men, and divided the surviving Jewish women and children amongst themselves.

The Muslim attitude toward Jews is reflected in various verses throughout the Koran, the holy book of the Islamic faith. “They [the Children of Israel] were consigned to humiliation and wretchedness. They brought the wrath of God upon themselves, and this because they used to deny God’s signs and kill His Prophets unjustly and because they disobeyed and were transgressors” (Sura 2:61). According to the Koran, the Jews try to introduce corruption (5:64), have always been disobedient (5:78), and are enemies of Allah, the Prophet and the angels (2:97-98).

Jews were generally viewed with contempt by their Muslim neighbors; peaceful coexistence between the two groups involved the subordination and degradation of the Jews. In the ninth century, Baghdad’s Caliph al-Mutawakkil designated a yellow badge for Jews, setting a precedent that would be followed centuries later in Nazi Germany.

At various times, Jews in Muslim lands lived in relative peace and thrived culturally and economically. The position of the Jews was never secure, however, and changes in the political or social climate would often lead to persecution, violence and death.

When Jews were perceived as having achieved too comfortable a position in Islamic society, anti-Semitism would surface, often with devastating results. On December 30, 1066, Joseph HaNagid, the Jewish vizier of Granada, Spain, was crucified by an Arab mob that proceeded to raze the Jewish quarter of the city and slaughter its 5,000 inhabitants. The riot was incited by Muslim preachers who had angrily objected to what they saw as inordinate Jewish political power.

Similarly, in 1465, Arab mobs in Fez slaughtered thousands of Jews, leaving only 11 alive, after a Jewish deputy vizier treated a Muslim woman in “an offensive manner.” The killings touched off a wave of similar massacres throughout Morocco.

Other mass murders of Jews in Arab lands occurred in Morocco in the 8th century, where whole communities were wiped out by the Muslim ruler Idris I; North Africa in the 12th century, where the Almohads either forcibly converted or decimated several communities; Libya in 1785, where Ali Burzi Pasha murdered hundreds of Jews; Algiers, where Jews were massacred in 1805, 1815 and 1830; and Marrakesh, Morocco, where more than 300 Jews were murdered between 1864 and 1880.

Decrees ordering the destruction of  synagogues were enacted in Egypt and Syria (1014, 1293-4, 1301-2), Iraq (854­-859, 1344) and Yemen (1676). Despite the Koran’s prohibition, Jews were forced to convert to Islam or face death in Yemen (1165 and 1678), Morocco (1275, 1465 and 1790-92) and Baghdad (1333 and 1344).

The situation of Jews in Arab lands reached a low point in the 19th century. Jews in most of North Africa (including AlgeriaTunisiaEgyptLibya and Morocco) were forced to live in ghettos. In Morocco, which contained the largest Jewish community in the Islamic Diaspora, Jews were made to walk barefoot or wear shoes of straw when outside the ghetto. Even Muslim children participated in the degradation of Jews, by throwing stones at them or harassing them in other ways. The frequency of anti-Jewish violence increased, and many Jews were executed on charges of apostasy. Ritual murder accusations against the Jews became commonplace in the Ottoman Empire.

As distinguished Orientalist G.E. von Grunebaum has written:

It would not be difficult to put together the names of a very sizeable number Jewish subjects or citizens of the Islamic area who have attained to high rank, to power, to great financial influence, to significant and recognized intellectual attainment; and the same could be done for Christians. But it would again not be difficult to compile a lengthy list of persecutions, arbitrary confiscations, attempted forced conversions, or pogroms.

The danger for Jews became even greater as a showdown approached in the UN. The Syrian delegate, Faris el-Khouri, warned: “Unless the Palestine problem is settled, we shall have difficulty in protecting and safeguarding the Jews in the Arab world.”

On 24 November 1947 the head of the Egyptian delegation to the General Assembly, Muhammad Hussein Heykal Pasha, said that “the lives of 1,000,000 Jews in Moslem countries would be jeopardized by the establishment of a Jewish state”.

Iraq’s prime minister Nuri al-Said said that if the United Nations solution was not “satisfactory”, “severe measures should be taken against all Jews in Arab countries”.


More than a thousand Jews were killed in anti-Jewish rioting during the 1940’s in Iraq, Libya, Egypt, Syria and Yemen.

. This helped trigger the mass exodus of Jews from Arab countries.


When 127 does not equal 127 – Written by Charles Abelsohn

  1. The radio broadcast the first estimate of the number of victims killed by terrorists in their recent attacks in Paris. 127, the radio repeated, later increased to 130. 127. The French population is about 70 million. The Parisian population is in shock. The French President declares war on…somebody. The UK offers military assistance. The western world expresses sympathy and solidarity. France is on high alert. 3 days of national mourning is declared. A state of emergency is declared. Changes to the French constitution are proposed. The gunmen appear to have come from Brussels, the capital of Belgium, and, with Nato and the European Union headquartered in Brussels, the de facto capital of Europe. Brussels goes into lockdown. Europe is in a state of shock. 127 are killed and Europe with its population of over 500,000,000 comes to a standstill. Even cities in the United States took security precautions. Many heads of state and heads of government, as well as the Secretary-General of the United Nations, offered messages of condolence to the French government.


My attention was no longer focused on any of the above. 127. Why is this number so familiar? I know that I have heard this number before but in what context? I rack my brain but without success. I scan the UK and other English language media, who can usually be relied upon to miss the obvious, but if there is any reason to recognize “127”, the media has missed or ignored it. 127. The biggest attack in France since the second world war, the number is so familiar, I know I am on the right track but why? Where do I begin my search?


The radio, which brought me the news of the estimated 127 murdered in Paris, brings me more news. There has been another Palestinian attack, this time in Gush Etziyon. Gush Etziyon? Wait a minute. I think I have arrived at my eureka moment. Let`s check. That is it. Mystery solved. 127? Yes, Kfar Etziyon. On May 13, 1948, 127 Jewish residents of Kfar Etziyon surrendered to the Trans-Jordanian British officered Arab Legion. 127 Jews, soldiers and civilians, in the process of surrendering, were massacred. No wonder the number 127 was so familiar. There was no occupation. There were no “illegal settlements”. In fact, there was no State of Israel. The Jewish population of Palestine was about 600,000. Nor was there time for three days of national mourning or for life to come to a standstill. The land on which Kfar Etziyon was situated had been legally purchased by Jews in about 1925 and possessed since. The Etziyon bloc area, situated in mandatory Palestine, covered about 20,000 dunam, about 20 square miles, lawfully purchased and farmed. The Jews were in Kfar Etziyon totally legally. Totally irrelevant.


But for Kfar Etziyon, in 1948, there were no offers of assistance. Heads of States worldwide were silent. France did not declare war on the attackers, but, instead, like the USA and Great Britain, declared an arms embargo on the Jews. Great Britain continued to provide the Arab Legion with arms and officers. The Arab Legion with its British weaponry and British officers continued with its attack on Israel after the declaration of the state of Israel on 15 May 1948. Perhaps due to faulty communications, it does not appear that any messages of sympathy, of solidarity, of support or even of condolence were received.


The massacre of the surrendered soldiers and civilians by the Arab forces sent a clear message: The war which the Arabs were about to declare would be a war of extermination and ethnic cleansing of the Jews in Palestine. No Jews would be allowed to live on territory conquered by Arabs. None were then and none are now, a policy continued and implemented today in Areas A and B of the Palestinian Authority. I think the correct word to describe this Palestinian policy against Jews is “apartheid”. And so?


127 Jews living legally on Jewish owned property in British administered Mandatory Palestine may have been massacred but no one outside the Jewish world shed a tear. More bluntly, no one gave a damn. Palestine west of the Jordan river was now illegally occupied by Trans-Jordan, ethnically cleansed of Jews and subsequently annexed by Trans-Jordan, captured following Trans-Jordan`s illegal war of aggression. Jordan`s policy: No Jews. So what, dear Jews, please don`t bother the “civilized world” or the UN with facts.  The world remained silent – until 1967.


On 13 April 1948, under the eyes of British forces, the Arabs attacked a convoy to the Hadassah hospital on Mount Scopus, and massacred 78 mainly medical personnel and patients. On May 28th 1948, the British officered Trans-Jordanian Arab Legion captured the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem (“east” Jerusalem had not yet been invented) and ethnic cleansed the Jewish Quarter of its Jewish inhabitants, not forgetting to destroy 58 of the 59 synagogues in the Jewish quarter in the process.  As usual, the UN and its members, including the USA, Great Britain and France, looked the other way.


The United Nations had more important matters to discuss than wasting time on Trans-Jordan`s, now known as Jordan, illegal annexation of the west bank and its ethnic cleansing and massacre of Jews and its prohibition of Jews from access to the Western Wall or to the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron. After all, what`s a little massacre of Jews here and there, land theft, expulsion of Jews, prohibition on Jews even visiting their Holy Sites and an illegal annexation among friends?


19 years later Israel recovered Kfar Etziyon. The 127 were forgotten by the West and the UN – assuming the UN even noticed or cared in the first place. Jordan`s illegal annexation? What are you talking about? The land is still legally owned by Jews? Bad luck. But you cannot hold a good man down for long. The UN came roaring back to life. After all, the history of mankind clearly commenced in June 1967. At long last, it took resolution after resolution regarding Gush Etziyon – against Israel. France is scrambling to introduce yet another resolution in the Security Council on the Israel-Palestine conflict. The mainly European financed NGOs rediscovered a target and took on a new lease of life. The Presbyterian and Methodist Churches finally had something to pray about. Jews and Israelis living in Kfar Etziyon? Forgetaboutit!


If there remained any doubt that 127 is not equal to 127, that the massacre of Jews is “different”, the French Ambassador to the US, Gerard Araud, in a totally believable statement in response to the Islamic State (ISIS) attacks on Paris, said and summed it up best (actually, worst). In a letter written to French citizens residing in the US, Araud drew a comparison between the Paris attacks of November 2015 and the January 2015 attacks in Paris, in which Muslim terrorists murdered 17 people, including Jews, in attacks on the Charlie Hebdo satirical paper and on a Jewish supermarket. “These are the foundations of our model of society that the terrorists seek to destroy: Yesterday journalists and Jews; now ordinary citizens whose only crime was to enjoy life on a Friday night in Paris,” said Araud articulating the traditional distinction between Jews and “ordinary citizens.”  No, even the terrorist attacks in Paris did not change the nature of the beast. Jews are still not “ordinary citizens”.  Araud was simply stating what the rest of the world is thinking and the UN is resolving on an almost daily basis.


In 1948, the 127 massacred were Jews. And so? The 127 Jews of Kfar Etziyon in 1948 and the Jews killed in a Paris supermarket in 2015 were, well, Jews. In 2015, the estimate of 127 killed in Paris (subsequently increased to130) were “ordinary citizens” enjoying life in Paris. Nearly seventy years later, 127 still does not equal 127.


A Tribute to a Giant

Maurice Ostroff (z’l)

Date: Sunday the 10th January, 2016

Place: Beth Protea, 5 Asher Barash Street, Herzliya.

Time: 7.30pm

In the spirit of Maurice – this untiring warrior for Israel – TbT is proud to present a Panel Discussion entitled:

The New Battle Landscape – The War of Words against Israel

This is an issue to which Maurice Ostroff dedicated the twilight years of his life – taking on politicians, statesmen, jurists, academicians, journalists and NGOs around the globe over their inaccurate – frequently slanderous – and deliberately misleading coverage of or commentary on Israel.

In the words of Maurice:

“We need to present the truth – the facts about Israel – to the world.”

The Panel

Irwin Cotler – a premier advocate for Israel and former Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada

Steve Linde – Editor-in-Chief of ‘The Jerusalem Post’

Ben-Dror Yemini – senior journalist with the Hebrew daily ‘Yediot Ahronoth’, author of the book, ‘Industry of Lies’, who lectures on the spread and impact of anti-Israel propaganda and

Dan DikerFellow and Project Director of Political Warfare at the Jerusalem Center, for Public Affairs, a Research Fellow at the International  Institute  for Counter Terrorism and a former Secretary General of the World Jewish Congress (WJC).

David Kaplan: moderator

The evening will commence with tributes by organizations – TbT, CoHav, MACHAL, Israel-South Africa Chamber of Commerce, Beth Protea and Telfed which “Our Mo” was strongly associated with.

There will be a presentation of the first annual TbT Maurice Ostroff Memorial Award “for outstanding service in the field of public diplomacy.”

Admission is free

Please confirm your attendance by emailing or phoning below:

David Kaplan hildav@netvision.net.il      050-7432361

Harris Green   zvi.green@outlook.com   054-3995034

There is no difference between victims – written by Olivier Rafowicz

It has been exactly three months since Palestinians, armed with knives, axes, hammers, Kalashnikov  rifles, stone blocks or as what happened in Jerusalem on the 14 December 2015, driving cars into a group of Jews waiting for a bus, embarked on this latest wave of terror.

The goal is to kill as many Jews as possible and to sow terror among the population. This wave of terrorism is not new.  It resurfaces time and again with a different name, reason or pretext.

It has been more than a century since Jews returned to Israel, to cultivate the land, drain the swamps and build villages and farms. Arab gangs attacked these pioneers who came to clear the land and make it more fertile.

Even then, before the creation of the State of Israel, and even before we speak about borders, territories and “occupation”, the Arabs of Hebron, the Galilee and Jerusalem attacked farms, stabbing and shooting their Jewish inhabitants. They refused to acknowledge that this was the historical land of the Jewish people.

This third “Intifada” appears to look like the murderous and violent movements of the Arabs before the creation of the State of Israel. Many anti-Semitic diplomats of the EU say this is just a reaction to Israel’s “blocking” of the peace process between the Jewish state and the Palestinians.

This Intifada of knives, axes, guns, stones and car-rammings, is the popular expression of a deep refusal of the Palestinian Arabs to accept a Jewish state.

This refusal, this denial today, under the pretext of a pseudo-change of the status quo on the Temple Mount, is a repeating  of the same refusal that the grandfathers and certainly the great-grandfathers of these young killers have had for over a century.

Shouting “Allah hu Akhbar” or “Itbach al Yahud” they have killed and severely wounded many, including babies, as was the case with this recent car-ramming.  Many families are bereaved, having buried their loved ones.

Palestinian leaders have ignited the hatred by inciting with more lies. There is a persistent victim mentality that blames the Jews for stealing their land.

Israel has no choice but to defend her citizens. In order to exist and live in our land we must be strong. This is something international officials do not always understand.

The terrible attacks in Paris last November, the ugly carnage at the Bataclan, showed the Europeans exactly what the face of Islamist terrorism looks like. This destructive, hate-filled, radicalized form of Islam seeks to take over the world by re-establishing the global caliphate.


Israel and Jews have endured this threat for a long time.

We know that we need to fight this Islamist terror monster with an iron hand. Not even the smallest flaw can be allowed, lest it strikes again.

It is clear that the Europeans, after the carnage of November 13, understand that this type of terrorism is not local or even national but occurs worldwide and that the assassins are the same in Paris, Bamako, Nairobi and Brussels.

The victims are also the same. Everywhere….except in Israel.

As the heart of the free world is hit by the terrorism of the Islamic State, so a distinction between the victims for example in France and in Israel grows.

European states continue to pay funds via the Palestinian Authority to the families of Jihadists who kill and to the terrorists who are imprisoned in Israeli jails.

There are no good or bad terrorists. There is one enemy which is the same everywhere. It is called Islamic terrorism and it has a single goal:  to take over and Islamize the world.

It is this scourge that must be fought.  Everywhere! ●

The VW debacle: is it the tip of an iceberg? – by Maurice Ostroff

Who is supervising the IAEA, the EU, the World Bank,
the world’s stock exchanges and the big banks?

Roman poet Juvenal asked:

“Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? (“Who will guard the guards?”).

And in 1887 Lord Acton, in a letter to Bishop Mandell Creighton, wrote:

“Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men.”

The VW scandal following hard on the heels of the FIFA revelations and all too many other recent major scams reminds us that even the most highly placed and respected person is not infallible.

Click here for more http://www.maurice-ostroff.org/the-vw-debacle-is-it-the-tip-of-an-iceberg/


I read in a recent BDS publication that Denis Goldberg, who they define as an “anti-apartheid icon”, recently participated in a till-jam action at the Constantia branch of Woolworths in the Western Cape. This action is part of the illegal campaign that calls for the complete boycott of Woolworths until it ends its trade links with Israel.

I further observe that the African National Congress and the South African Communist Party of which Goldberg has been a loyal member for more than 50 years, are listed amongst the endorsers of the BDS campaign.

Goldberg and I have certain things in common. We are both Jewish. We both grew up in the beautiful city of Cape Town. We are both graduates of the University of Cape Town. We both vehemently opposed the apartheid regime we were born into and we both pursued our respective ideologies with commitment and passion.

But that’s where it ends.

Where has Goldberg’s anachronistic ideology taken him? Has it advanced mankind? Alas, Goldberg’s ideology has proved a complete and utter failure. The new South Africa Goldberg helped facilitate, is in complete turmoil.

South Africa’s housing, educational, health and social infrastructures are, at best, typically third world. They continue to deteriorate in an out-of-control downhill spiral. South Africa’s economy is falling apart at the seams. Over the 21 years since the rise to power of Goldberg’s revered ANC, South Africa’s currency has devalued to a paltry 25% of its value against the US Dollar. Unprecedented crime rates, high unemployment, an energy crisis, widespread water pollution, corruption and nepotism are the tragic hallmarks of the new South Africa Goldberg helped facilitate. South Africa’s life expectancy is less than her pension age. Why should that even bother her communist inspired trade union movement when they can engage in infantile till-jammings?

Is this what Goldberg so unselfishly gave his life for? Can he, in his twilight years, recline in his armchair and reflect with any pride on the achievements of his beloved ANC and South African Communist Party? I don’t believe he can. If he does, he’s bluffing himself. It’s no wonder he’s turned to till-jamming.

Goldberg has never displayed any pride in his Jewish roots. He has never affiliated with the Jewish community. This, however, doesn’t preclude him from invoking these same roots in a fraudulent attempt to add credibility to his warped agenda of demonizing and delegitimizing Israel.

So where did the ideology I pursued so passionately take me?

Unlike Goldberg, Zionism, the national liberation movement of Goldberg’s and my people, has always been the motivating force of my ideology.

I consider myself fortunate to have taken part in a very different revolution to the one Goldberg participated in. My revolution promoted a vision to facilitate the creation of a modern and vibrant democracy – a democracy that guarantees equal rights to all its citizens regardless of race, religion, creed, sex or color. Essentially, what Goldberg claims he wanted for the people of South Africa, I wanted for the Jewish people in their historical homeland.

My dream envisioned a state to gather in Jewish exiles from around the world, to release them from their bondage and to provide them with the skills and opportunities to fulfill their potential as free people.

Unlike Goldberg’s, my dream has been vindicated.

Israel welcomed Jews from all over the world – many of them refugees fleeing for their lives. In the early nineties, Israel successfully integrated a million Jews from the Soviet Union and another 150,000 from Ethiopia. Many of these immigrants were old and sick and clearly placed a huge burden on Israel’s struggling economy.

These people had, for generations, been citizens in countries governed by corrupt, totalitarian regimes. They were systematically persecuted, denied the most basic human rights and subjected to a brain-washing process aimed at clouding their emotional links to their ethnic and cultural heritages. In successfully integrating these people into Israeli society, Israel fulfilled its mission of being both a spiritual home and a safe haven where Jews could live as free people.

Life expectancy in Israel is amongst the highest in the world. Over the past 50 years, the average life expectancy in Israel increased by almost 10 years. Israel’s water technologies have dramatically changed her landscapes while her revolutionary solar and wind energy technologies ensure maximization of Israel’s industrial potential.

These achievements, together with an excellent judicial system that protects human and civil rights so effectively, are just some of the fruits yielded by my Zionist ideology.

I reflect with pride on what Zionism has achieved for me, for my people and for mankind. I take pride in the fact that my tax contributions funded the establishment of the Israeli field hospitals set up to help provide immediate care for the local populations following the devastating earthquakes in Nepal, Haiti and Turkey and the torrential floods in the Philippines.

I know Israel would love to share her state of the art technologies with South Africa in the same way she shares them with other African and third world countries. It would considerably enhance the quality of life for all South Africans, particularly amongst those less fortunate.

Together we can make this world a better place in which to live.

Goldberg’s histrionic till-jamming is certainly not the way forward.

Beth Protea, Truth be Told (TbT) & Wits Alumni Welcome you to hear Marlene Bethlehem on: “Mandela and the Jewish community”



Beth Protea, Truth be Told (TbT) & Wits Alumni

Welcome you to hear Marlene Bethlehem on:

Mandela and the Jewish community

There will be opening remarks by His Excellency, the South African Ambassador to Israel, Sisa Ngombaneand a few illuminating insights by Rabbi Dov Sidelsky from Jerusalem, whose late father Lazar Sidelsky, played a monumental role in South Africa’s destiny by taking on a young black law student as an article clerk – something unheard of in SA at that time – who would proceed on his “long walk” to free a nation.

Many Jews in South Africa had a special relationship with Mandela in the struggle before his incarceration on Robin Island, during the long period of his imprisonment and the period following his release, emerging as the nation’s first democratic president.

Marlene Bethlehem who had a close relationship with Nelson Mandela was a former chairman of the SA Jewish Board of Deputies from 1995-1999 and president from 1999-2003. In her youth, she was an accomplished tennis player, and won the Ladies Singles Plate event at Wimbledon in 1962.

Venue: Beth Protea

Date: 233d June

Time: 19.30

Charge: NIS 15 (for non-Beth Protea guests)

Light refreshments will be served.

                                                                                Please RSVP David Kaplan 09-7672404, 050-7432361 or email Hildav@netvision.net.il


               Lyn Bach (Cultural Director Beth Protea), David Kaplan, (Cofounder of TbT & former Chairman of Telfed) & Dr. Les Glassman (Israel Chairman of Wits Alumni)

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Cape Times contradicts its chairman’s claim that it reports fairly – by Maurice Ostroff

The chairman of the group that controls The Star, Cape Times, and other publications told the SA Jewish report,

“We as a group absolutely give voice to everybody. We don’t have a policy of being pro-Israel or pro-Palestine and we would guard against that”.

But the Cape Times evidently does not subscribe to the above principles.
Read more http://www.maurice-ostroff.org/?page_id=700



Truth be Told founder, Dave Kaplan, interviewed on i24 News


Coming out from the Cold – by Dave Kaplan

Israeli cooperation with Black leaders during the apartheid era

Coming out from the cold
By David Kaplan
This article, written in 1997, tells the fascinating story of covert Israeli cooperation with anti-apartheid Black leaders in South Africa during the darkest apartheid period.
If you chance to stroll along the stone paths of the wooded Beit Berel Campus outside of Kfar Saba in central Israel, you may be surprised to overhear conversations in Xhosa, Tswana, Zulu or Afrikaans. Participants of every shade of colour from South Africa’s “Rainbow Nation” are currently attending a unique ‘Community Development & Leadership Training’ programme. Why unique? Well, there is no other country in the world providing this essential training for South Africa’s future.

The tall man third from left is Prof Zelnicker, originator of the series of training courses


Telfed & Beth Beryl Project 2 (1)


 Photos by David Kaplan
That it has been doing so without any fuss or fanfare may explain why so few Israelis or South Africans know about it. A closely kept secrete, the programme has been running since the dark days of Apartheid.On the day that a delegation of the South African Zionist Federation in Israel (Telfed) visited the campus, the atmosphere amongst the participants was jubilant. Met with traditional South African dance and music, the 28th group of participants was celebrating the near completion of their course with a farewell cocktail party.Among the veterans of the Beit Berl programme are over two dozen mayors of South African towns and cities including the present mayors of the country’s two largest cities, Johannesburg and Cape Town, as well as those from smaller towns like Randburg, George, and Grahamstown. To that list, we can now add Port Alfred’s mayor, Eric Khuluwe. He tells us,
“Port Alfred is growing at an enormous pace as people are streaming in from the rural areas, seeking employment. The job situation is bleak and we are finding it an uphill battle to provide basic civic services. We have sixty-one local councils in my district and we need to involve as many people on the local level as possible in decision-making. This is the policy of the ANC government and is indicative of the nature of our democracy that empowers people to determine their own destiny. The Beit Berel three-week intensive course was excellent; it widened my horizons and provided practical guidance on team-management. I feel far better equipped to return to my city now and impact on its future. “
Since 1986,over twenty South African Members of Parliament, as well as hundreds of local government officials and ministers of provincial councils have passed through Beit Berel. Patrick Adams, a Coloured man in charge of Emergency & Disaster Management for the Cape Metropolitan Council in Cape Town, says,
“The course was very professional. I am in charge of Reconstruction & Development programmes in the Western Cape region, and my team is currently immersed in running numerous housing and community projects. Not only have I learned a new dimension of problem solving, but I have also been exposed to the problems in Israel and enjoy a greater understanding of the issues here.”
What seems routine today all began in the undercover world of the early 80s when clandestine contacts took place between progressive Israelis and the anti-apartheid forces in South Africa. The local powerhouse behind this project is Professor Shimshon Zelniker, who has masterfully manoeuvered between South Africans, Americans and Israelis, a fascinating amalgam of colourful characters including Hollywood stars, Jewish politicos, civil rights activists, freedom fighters and donors.Zeinicker, a professor of political science at Beit Berel and at UCLA, was a member of Shimon Peres’ advisory team in 1982.
“I was given responsibility for third-world policies, and my first mission was making positive contact with leaders of the struggle in South Africa”
The players in this unfolding theatre of clandestine operations spread across three continents. In South Africa, Clive Menell of Anglovaal paved the way by bringing on board Archbishop Benjamin Tutu. Soon other internationally renown personalities like Jane Fonda and Tom Hayden joined the circle, as did Ethel Kennedy, who twisted Tutu’s arm into meeting with the Israelis.This was the turning point, for what followed was a secret meeting in South Africa between a delegation of Israelis representing anti-apartheid sentiment and prominent Blacks, such as Albertina Sisulu and Ntatho and Sally Motlana.
“We came out of the meeting with a clear mandate for action. Armed with an understanding that there would be no political manifestos and no pictures of politicians kissing each other, but a programme geared solely to assisting in the struggle, we approached Jews in the United States for support. In Israel, Yossi Beilin, Alon Liel, Ruth Baron and myself, among others, spearheaded the programme to be called the Israeli and South African Centres for International Cooperation” (ICIC) and would be based at Beit Berel.
The early days saw us
“pounding the pavements in South Africa for some twenty months recruiting support and participants. The success of the operation was predicated on our ability to keep it under wraps.”
Asked how that was possible, Zelniker replied,
“You know how porcupines makes love? Very carefully”.
The first group of twenty arrived in 1986 representing three constituencies – Soweto, the Cape Coloured community and Women’s groups.
“We brought in the Histadrut to help in the initial training,” said Zelniker. “After the success of that first group, it was easier to obtain more funding. We approached very prominent, radically anti-Israel, Black leaders in the U.S. and received their blessing. Individual Jews donated large sums of money in the full knowledge that they would receive no recognition, and the American Government very quietly also assisted us in funding.”
Zelniker’s shuttling to and fro between Israel and South Africa was not without risk.
“My associate Ruth Baron was also detained. There were many ways the South African Authorities could have derailed the programme and they made it crystal clear that physical intimidation could be escalated. We were worried about the graduates being whisked away on their return from Israel for interrogation and intimidation, which on occasion did happen.”
Despite all the harassment, including infiltration by the South African Bureau of State Security (BOSS), the programme flourished.At one point in the late 1980s, Thomas Friedman of the New York Times bumped into a group of Black trainees in Tel Aviv. He thought he had uncovered the scoop of the century – ANC and AZAPO forge secret ties with Apartheid’s ‘ally’!
“He telephoned me and said,‘this is sensational. What’s it all about?” When I explained to him the need for secrecy I thankfully managed to persuade him that the programme and South Africa’s future were far more important than his ego. He dropped the story.”A NEW AGE
It was only a year or so after Mandela’s release that the programme’s profile entered the public domain.
“In 1993 we introduced a rural community development programme in the former homelands, and it was then that we came out into the open,” reveals Zelniker.
Today the programme has wide appeal throughout South Africa. Another participant in the present programme is Thabisile Msezane from Boksburg, who runs a day care-centre. Thabasile explains, “In the Boksburg area there were no schools and children loitered aimlessly in the streets wasting away their lives. Each day I noticed a little boy roaming around the shopping centre where I bought milk. He would ask me for money to buy food. I thought,
“What kind of future does this child have?”As I was starting a day care centre, I wanted to enroll this kid and so went in search of his parents. I was directed to a shabby compound behind a farmhouse, where I found his them. While speaking to the boy’s father, the child spread the word amongst his friends telling them he was going to school. By the end of my conversation, I had enrolled another twelve children. Today I have 150 pupils, some of whom walk a distance of twelve kilometres to get to the school.”
Trevor Ngwame, a councillor from Johannesburg, was all praise for the Beit Berel programme.
“We are dealing with the legacy of apartheid – no jobs, lack of housing and poor education. My approach is to offer people hope, and motivate them to organize themselves. We have seen how successful Israelis have been in overcoming insurmountable odds.Like South Africa, this country has never been short of problems and yet it manages to advance amazingly. This is what we want to do. Of course, Israel’s problems are very different, and in the South African context we have to ensure that people see a light at the end of the tunnel. I am not naïve to believe that matters are going to fall into place overnight. While the government must deliver the goods, the people also have to rise up to the challenge and they need the tools to it. This programme has been a tremendous help in this regard.’
Zelniker concludes,
“As a Jew I have learnt that liberation is not simply about taking the people out of the ghetto. It means taking the ghetto out of the people. To say that I am proud of this programme would be an understatement.”