Ottawa City Hall Hosts Palestinian Exhibit Honoring Terrorists

by IPT News  •  May 27, 2014

According to the Toronto Sun, Canada's capital Ottawa's city hall has no plans to take down an exhibit that honors Palestinian terrorists.

Toronto-based artist Rehab Nazzal created the exhibit featuring pictures of "lost artists, activists, writers and leaders." The pictures feature the face of Abu Iyad, a founder of the Black September terrorist organization responsible for the murders of 11 Israelis at the 1972 Munich Summer Olympics.

Dalal Mughrabi is also featured in the exhibit. Mughrabi orchestrated the 1978 Coastal Bus attack that killed 38 Israelis, including 13 children.

The mastermind of the Ma'alot school massacre, Khalil Nazzal, is also honored. The terrorist attack, which took place 40 years ago this month, resulted in the deaths of 22 children and 3 adults. The Israeli Embassy in Ottawa says that the exhibit's creator is a relative of Khalil Nazzal.

Numerous other terrorists are also featured. Abu Jihad, the former head of Fatah's military wing, led the 1975 Tel Aviv Savoy Hotel attack, killing eight innocent civilians, and the 1978 Coastal Bus Attack.

Israeli Ambassador Rafael Barak said that he is not demanding that the exhibit be taken down, but wants the Canadian public to understand that some of the artists and leaders are terrorists who have murdered innocent civilians.


The two Israelis killed in shooting attack at the Jewish Museum in Brussels, Belgium are Emanuel and Miriam Riba, 54 and 53, from Tel Aviv, authorities announced Sunday. The couple leaves behind two daughters, ages 15 and 16, according to Yediot Aharonot. 

The Israeli Embassy in Brussels has contacted local police to ensure that the bodies will be flown to Israel for the funeral. 

Neighbors were shocked to hear the news.

"She is a very educated woman and he was always very discreet," a neighbor told Channel 2 Sunday. "Even though they were on shlichut [Israel advocacy mission - ed.] to Germany for several years, and only returned recently, we always had a great relationship - they always had a smile on their face." 

The Ribas were in Berlin on shlichut from 2007-2011, neighbors told Yediot Aharonot. Emmanuel worked in the Public Security Ministry since returning from Germany. 

Another neighbor said he was shocked. 

"They were on shlichut but never thought that something like this could happen - we talked every few days," he said. "They were an intelligent, charming couple and it's hard to understand that this could happen to them." 

The other victims included a French woman, 23, who was killed at the scene; another shooting victim, in critical condition, is Belgian. 

A gunman entered Brussels' Jewish Museum Saturday afternoon and began shooting, killing three people - including the two Israelis - and critically wounding another.

A national manhunt has begun for the shooter; local police are still looking for possible suspects, official announced Sunday morning, despite at least one arrest shortly after the shooting. 

It was the first fatal attack on a Jewish center since the early 1980s in Belgium, home to some 40,000 Jews. Roughly half live in Brussels and the remainder in Antwerp.

 

More reports of heightened anti-Semitism have emerged in the wake of the Brussels shooting attack - this time, in Tunisia. 


Masked Muslims entered the main market in Djerba on Thursday, and stabbed Gabriel Ozen, 38, a Jewish jeweler and father of four.

Passerby stated that the assailants yelled, "the nation of Mohammed is coming back to take revenge" shortly before the attack. 

Ozen fought the Muslim attacker, but was still stabbed in the chest, authorities said. He was rushed to intensive care in local hospital and is in serious, but stable, condition. 

According to local media reports, merchants on the scene were able to apprehend the perpetrator and turn him in to local police. Justice will not be served, however; more than a hundred masked men surrounded the police station and threatened to burn it down if the terrorist was prosecuted.


The police released the assailant immediately. 


Locals are grateful that Ozen escaped death, but are now fearful of unchecked anti-Semitic violence. 

"It was a real miracle - the event could have ended in disaster if not for the intervention of bystanders, who later apprehended the attacker," a local stated to Arutz Sheva Sunday. "Thank God, the wounded man is recovering, but fear and worry run rampant since the attacker was released an hour later and is still at large." 

"Just last week there were thousands of Jews that were at the annual hilula [Lag Ba'omer - ed.] celebration," he mused. "Is it possible there's a connection?" 

This is the second anti-Semitic attack in Tunisia this month. Muslim terrorists attacked Morris Bachiri, a Jewish merchant from El Hara El Kabira, on Passover Eve; Bachiri suffered minor injuries.


Oh my... 9-year old boy walks off baseball field rather than play without tzitzis


How many of you would have had the guts to do the same thing? How many of you would have had the guts to do it at the age of 9?

The game was going fine, with Yossi (as always) very actively participating, and very much looking forward to his "at bat." As he came up to bat, the umpire happened to notice that Yossi wears two uniforms, his team uniform, and also the fringe undergarment uniform of every male Jew - Tzitzit.

But then, for the first time, the umpire insisted that Yossi remove his Tzitzit in that it could produce some type of "interference or unfair advantage."

Yossi --the only Jewish boy, not just on the team, but we think in the entire league-- respectfully explained to the umpire that he is wearing a religious undergarment, had never had an issue with this previously, however the umpire would not listen, decrying in affect "foul ball."

What was Yossi to do? Disrespect the umpire (an adult), or disrespect his religion? 

To Yossi, the choice was easy and clear. He had "two feet on the ground" in more ways than one. He walked off the field and would not play! 

The game stopped, Yossi's team also volunteered to walk off the field and forfeit the game in its entirety. 

After a significant "pow-wow" between the coaches and the umpire, Yossi was allowed to play, "double uniforms" and all.

  Perhaps even more amazing than what Yossi did is that the rest of the kids were willing to walk off with him. Of course, if he is the best player on his team, that becomes a bit more explicable. 

May Yossi grow up to be a talmid chacham (scholar) and a tzadik (righteous person) and bring only nachas (contentment) to his family.


Israeli presidential candidates and former ministers Meir Shitrit, center right, and Reuven Rivlin, center left, hug during the presidential election at the Knesset, Israel's parliament, in Jerusalem, Tuesday, June, 10, 2014. The Israeli parliament selected Reuven Rivlin as the country's next president to succeed the outgoing Shimon Peres, a Nobel Peace Prize laureate who brought the position international prestige. (AP Photo/Dan Balilty)

Jerusalem -  Israel’s parliament on Tuesday chose Reuven Rivlin, a veteran politician and supporter of the Jewish settlement movement, as the country’s next president, putting a man opposed to the creation of a Palestinian state into the ceremonial but largely influential post.

Rivlin, a stalwart in the governing Likud Party, now faces the difficult task of succeeding Shimon Peres, a Nobel peace laureate who became an all-star on the international stage.

While the presidency is largely ceremonial, Rivlin’s political views could be a liability when he represents the country overseas. His opposition to Palestinian independence puts him at odds with the international community and Israel’s own prime minister.

Instead, he has been a supporter of Jewish settlements in occupied lands claimed by the Palestinians and proposed a special union with the Palestinians in which Jews and Arabs would hold common citizenship but vote for separate parliaments.

The president is meant to serve as a unifying figure and moral compass for the country, and Rivlin has said that in contrast to Peres, he would focus on domestic affairs if selected to the post.

“I think the people’s will was manifested,” Rivlin said after Tuesday’s vote. He dismissed speculation that he might be upset at Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who tried to block his candidacy, saying he was “not angry at anyone.”

Rivlin, 74, currently a lawmaker for the right-wing Likud, has previously served as speaker of parliament and as a Cabinet minister. He defeated Meir Sheetrit, another veteran politician, 63 to 53, in a secret runoff ballot. Three other candidates were eliminated in a first round of voting in the 120-member parliament earlier in the day.

Rivlin will have big shoes to fill, after Peres, 90, steps down. Peres, whose political career stretches back decades and who has been an outspoken proponent of peace with the Palestinians, brought the office international renown. He also restored honor to the position, which was tarnished after his predecessor, Moshe Katsav, was forced to step down by a sex scandal. Katsav is now in prison after being convicted of rape.

The vote capped a nasty presidential campaign that saw mudslinging, political intrigue and scandals that forced two hopefuls to pull out of the running.

Netanyahu’s public standing also has taken a hit during the campaign due to his attempts to shape the race and block Rivlin’s candidacy. He and Rivlin are longtime rivals in the Likud.

While most political power is held by the prime minister, the president plays several key roles in Israel.

Most critically, the president chooses a member of parliament, or Knesset, to form a majority coalition after elections. This has usually been the leader of the party with the most seats in parliament. But with the rise of a number of midsize parties in parliament, the next president could theoretically have more influence over choosing the country’s prime minister.

The other candidates included Dalia Dorner, a former Supreme Court judge. Former parliamentary speaker Dalia Itzik and Nobel Prize in Chemistry winner Dan Shechtman also vied for the job.


Csanad Szegedi in a Budapest Synagogue. A former high-ranking member of Hungary's far-right Jobbik party, he learned in 2012 that he had Jewish roots. He has since abandoned party politics and taken up the religion of his grandmother, a survivor of the Nazis' Auschwitz death camp. Budapest, Wednesday, May 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Peter Kohalmi)  Budapest - He was a rising star of Hungary’s far-right, dumped by his party after he admitted he was a Jew. Two years later, Csanad Szegedi has completed an astonishing transformation: He goes to synagogue, eats Kosher food and has adopted the Hebrew name Dovid.  As a leader in Hungary’s Jobbik Party, Szegedi whipped up crowds by accusing Jews of “buying up the country” and mocking the “Jewishness” of Hungary’s political class. Then came the revelation that upended his career: His maternal grandparents were Jews — which under Jewish law made him one, too. Szegedi acknowledged his roots after video surfaced of a suspected blackmailer confronting him with evidence of his Jewishness.  In the political wilderness, Szegedi has apparently had a spiritual awakening.  Last year, he sought out a young rabbi in the local Orthodox Jewish community. After a period of intense religious instruction, Szegedi was circumcised last June, a year to the day after he broke with Jobbik. Today he takes Jewish religion classes with his wife, who is also converting to Judaism.  “I am just as Hungarian as until now, but I have expanded my own identity with the Jewish identity,” Szegedi, 31, told The Associated Press. “I have two tasks ahead of me — to teach and to learn. I want to be a bridge.”      

Csanad Szegedi in a Budapest Synagogue. A former high-ranking member of Hungary's far-right Jobbik party, he learned in 2012 that he had Jewish roots. He has since abandoned party politics and taken up the religion of his grandmother, a survivor of the Nazis' Auschwitz death camp. Budapest, Wednesday, May 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Peter Kohalmi)

Budapest - He was a rising star of Hungary’s far-right, dumped by his party after he admitted he was a Jew. Two years later, Csanad Szegedi has completed an astonishing transformation: He goes to synagogue, eats Kosher food and has adopted the Hebrew name Dovid.

As a leader in Hungary’s Jobbik Party, Szegedi whipped up crowds by accusing Jews of “buying up the country” and mocking the “Jewishness” of Hungary’s political class. Then came the revelation that upended his career: His maternal grandparents were Jews — which under Jewish law made him one, too. Szegedi acknowledged his roots after video surfaced of a suspected blackmailer confronting him with evidence of his Jewishness.

In the political wilderness, Szegedi has apparently had a spiritual awakening.

Last year, he sought out a young rabbi in the local Orthodox Jewish community. After a period of intense religious instruction, Szegedi was circumcised last June, a year to the day after he broke with Jobbik. Today he takes Jewish religion classes with his wife, who is also converting to Judaism.

“I am just as Hungarian as until now, but I have expanded my own identity with the Jewish identity,” Szegedi, 31, told The Associated Press. “I have two tasks ahead of me — to teach and to learn. I want to be a bridge.”

 

 

In this picture taken Friday, May 30, 2014, Csanad Szegedi, right, speaks with Chief Chabad Rabbi Boruch Oberlander in Budapest. (AP Photo/Peter Kohalmi)  Szegedi was a founder of the Hungarian Guard, a now-banned militia whose black uniforms recalled the Arrow Cross, a pro-Nazi party that briefly governed Hungary at the end of World War II and killed thousands of Jews. As a Jobbik member, he took one of the three seats the party won in 2009 European Parliament elections.  Szegedi kept his seat after being dropped by Jobbik and went on to advocate stronger ties with Israel and Roma integration, while condemning the rise of extremism in the EU.  The first step in Szegedi’s personal transformation came days after Jobbik kicked him out — ostensibly because Szegedi offered the blackmailer hush money, not because he was Jewish.  Szegedi had just published a 316-page book of his interviews, speeches and writings, including anti-Semitic rants. He asked bookstores to return several thousand copies of “I Believe in Hungary’s Resurrection,” dumped them in an oil drum at a railway depot — and set them on fire.  “To burn a book is always a barbaric, primitive thing, but I felt that, symbolically and spiritually, fire always cleanses,” Szegedi told The AP. “With this I was able to cleanse my own past and bring that era to a close. The cover has my picture on it and it was very strange to see my face burn.”  Still, he decided to save a few copies “so I can give them to my children and tell them, ‘This also belongs to your father’s life.’”  Chief Chabad Rabbi Boruch Oberlander, who is teaching Szegedi about Judaism, said the former rightist’s change of heart appears to be authentic.  “He is still very young so he can start all over again,” said Oberlander. “He is winning many friends in the Jewish community.”  After his circumcision, Oberlander added, “some Jews said, ‘Ah, now we see that he is really serious.’”  Oberlander said Szegedi was an “extreme example” of how Hungarian Jews were rediscovering their identities. Upon learning he was a Jew, Szegedi also found out that his grandmother survived Auschwitz, and his grandfather a Nazi labor camp.  The grandmother, Magdolna Klein, kept her heritage hidden for fear the persecution would be repeated, a common choice among Hungarian Holocaust survivors. Those fears, still present nearly 70 years later, made her plead with her grandson to keep quiet after he learned he was a Jew, Szegedi said.  It was only shortly before she died in March, at age 94, that she was able to accept her grandson’s embrace of Judaism, he said.  “On her death bed,” Szegedi said, “my grandmother said that deep in her soul she was happy that her youngest grandson was picking up the chain which had been broken in the 1950s.”  Szegedi now sees no redeeming values in his former party, but defends its supporters. He attributed his own extremist politics to ignorance and the influence of friends he made when he moved to Budapest from eastern Hungary to study history at university.  “The political intention of Jobbik’s leadership is to generate tensions in society,” Szegedi said. “It does not make much sense to debate with them, but the majority of Jobbik’s 1 million voters are not anti-Semitic or racist — they are simply people in despair.”  Szegedi has spoken to young people about his experiences and racial harmony in several schools, including before a class of 14-year-olds in his alma mater in his hometown of Miskolc, which he called a “rewarding experience.” He is planning similar talks at more schools. In May, he spoke to a group of Hungarian schoolchildren about the Holocaust during a visit to Auschwitz.  “Giving a presentation to 40 children at the gates of Auschwitz was surreal,” said Szegedi.  Szegedi has visited Israel twice in the past two years. As he spoke to AP outside Budapest’s Dohany Street synagogue, the largest in Europe, a tourist from Tel Aviv recognized Szegedi from an Israeli television appearance — and asked him to pose for a picture with him.  “I choose to believe that he had that shock in his life when he discovered he was Jewish,” said the tourist, Ofer Kol. “The story was very touching.”   

In this picture taken Friday, May 30, 2014, Csanad Szegedi, right, speaks with Chief Chabad Rabbi Boruch Oberlander in Budapest. (AP Photo/Peter Kohalmi)

Szegedi was a founder of the Hungarian Guard, a now-banned militia whose black uniforms recalled the Arrow Cross, a pro-Nazi party that briefly governed Hungary at the end of World War II and killed thousands of Jews. As a Jobbik member, he took one of the three seats the party won in 2009 European Parliament elections.

Szegedi kept his seat after being dropped by Jobbik and went on to advocate stronger ties with Israel and Roma integration, while condemning the rise of extremism in the EU.

The first step in Szegedi’s personal transformation came days after Jobbik kicked him out — ostensibly because Szegedi offered the blackmailer hush money, not because he was Jewish.

Szegedi had just published a 316-page book of his interviews, speeches and writings, including anti-Semitic rants. He asked bookstores to return several thousand copies of “I Believe in Hungary’s Resurrection,” dumped them in an oil drum at a railway depot — and set them on fire.

“To burn a book is always a barbaric, primitive thing, but I felt that, symbolically and spiritually, fire always cleanses,” Szegedi told The AP. “With this I was able to cleanse my own past and bring that era to a close. The cover has my picture on it and it was very strange to see my face burn.”

Still, he decided to save a few copies “so I can give them to my children and tell them, ‘This also belongs to your father’s life.’”

Chief Chabad Rabbi Boruch Oberlander, who is teaching Szegedi about Judaism, said the former rightist’s change of heart appears to be authentic.

“He is still very young so he can start all over again,” said Oberlander. “He is winning many friends in the Jewish community.”

After his circumcision, Oberlander added, “some Jews said, ‘Ah, now we see that he is really serious.’”

Oberlander said Szegedi was an “extreme example” of how Hungarian Jews were rediscovering their identities. Upon learning he was a Jew, Szegedi also found out that his grandmother survived Auschwitz, and his grandfather a Nazi labor camp.

The grandmother, Magdolna Klein, kept her heritage hidden for fear the persecution would be repeated, a common choice among Hungarian Holocaust survivors. Those fears, still present nearly 70 years later, made her plead with her grandson to keep quiet after he learned he was a Jew, Szegedi said.

It was only shortly before she died in March, at age 94, that she was able to accept her grandson’s embrace of Judaism, he said.

“On her death bed,” Szegedi said, “my grandmother said that deep in her soul she was happy that her youngest grandson was picking up the chain which had been broken in the 1950s.”

Szegedi now sees no redeeming values in his former party, but defends its supporters. He attributed his own extremist politics to ignorance and the influence of friends he made when he moved to Budapest from eastern Hungary to study history at university.

“The political intention of Jobbik’s leadership is to generate tensions in society,” Szegedi said. “It does not make much sense to debate with them, but the majority of Jobbik’s 1 million voters are not anti-Semitic or racist — they are simply people in despair.”

Szegedi has spoken to young people about his experiences and racial harmony in several schools, including before a class of 14-year-olds in his alma mater in his hometown of Miskolc, which he called a “rewarding experience.” He is planning similar talks at more schools. In May, he spoke to a group of Hungarian schoolchildren about the Holocaust during a visit to Auschwitz.

“Giving a presentation to 40 children at the gates of Auschwitz was surreal,” said Szegedi.

Szegedi has visited Israel twice in the past two years. As he spoke to AP outside Budapest’s Dohany Street synagogue, the largest in Europe, a tourist from Tel Aviv recognized Szegedi from an Israeli television appearance — and asked him to pose for a picture with him.

“I choose to believe that he had that shock in his life when he discovered he was Jewish,” said the tourist, Ofer Kol. “The story was very touching.”