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The best Zionism reads of the week




Bev Goldman is the doyen of South African Zionist communicators – having spent almost a decade at the helm of the SAZF’s communications department, producing the FedSpeak newspaper and running Media Team Israel.

To keep Report readers current, Bev scans dozens of op-ed pieces in SA and the world media on Zionism so that she can offer us her weekly pick of the best and most interesting, challenging and positive Zionist reading. Bev is also deeply involved in Zionist education.

Opinion & Analysis, Week ending 19 March

1. Israel’s character as a “Jewish state”

BICOM Briefing, BICOM, 18 March 2014

Most Israeli Jews wish to preserve Israel’s current character as a democratic state with a Jewish majority; a state that allows Jews to express the universal legal right to national self-determination, but which also protects fully the rights of non-Jewish minorities.

2. The woman who saved Syria’s Jews

Emma Beals, The Daily Beast, 17 March 2014

Three decades ago, Judy Feld Carr started smuggling members of Syria’s minority Jewish community out of the country. She talks to The Daily Beast about her secret work saving people from slaughter under Assad.


3. Putin, Ukraine and the Jews

Isi leibler, Word from Jerusalem, 17 March 2014

It is clearly in our national interest, without being under any idealistic illusions, to nurture ties with a Russia whose leader seems to have dramatically broken with centuries of Tsarist and Bolshevik anti-Semitism and now displays friendship towards the Jewish people.


4. The Cape Town Declaration: Dead in the Water?

Ant Katz, PoliticsWeb, 17 March 2014

The Cape Town Declaration is dead in the water, says ACDP MP Cheryllyn Dudley. “This is huge,” she says, “it’s been a great victory for everyone who has been working for common sense to prevail.” The Cape Town Declaration will not be tabled before this or any other Parliament.  

5. The debate is about our right to exist

Dror Eydar, Israel Hayom, 16 March 2014 

No Arab state recognizes our right as Jews to any part of the region. They obscure the issue and talk about “recognizing Israel,” since the desire is to perpetuate the conflict even after a diplomatic treaty is signed, when the false claim will be that the Arab minority in Israel is suffering under “apartheid” and should have autonomy, since they belong to the Palestinian people who have been here since the dawn of creation.

6. Eight crucial questions for Abbas (and one for President Obama)

John Ryan, Gatestone Institute, 15 March 2014


There seems to be a double-standard when it comes to how Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, and the Palestinian Authority’s erstwhile President, Mahmoud Abbas — now in the tenth year of his four-year term — are treated by the Obama White House, as well as by many journalists.

7. Putin’s terrifying warmongering

Alexander Motyl. World Affairs, 14 March 2014

On March 8th, some 15,000 women and children lined the roads of Crimea, and Kherson Province to its north, in protest against President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. The Crimean Tatar and Ukrainian women didn’t come out in force just because it happened to be International Women’s Day. They were also responding to Putin’s threat to implicate them and their children in further acts of war against Ukraine.

8. Iran: Kurds tortured and hanged

Shadi Paveh, Gatestone Institute, 13 March 2014

198 people have been hanged so far in 2014 — a period of only two and a half months. “The court told me, ‘You are an enemy of God. You must be hanged very soon.’ That was the sum of my entire court process. I don’t have any lawyer to defend me,” said Ms. Zainab Jalalian. Iran’s grotesque human rights violations, the rise in executions, or the fate of three Americans — Amir Hekmati, Pastor Saeed Abedini and Robert Levinson — held as political prisoners inside Iran, were not even discussed during the historic negotiations between the United States and Iran in late 2013.

9. To fight anti-Semitism we must define it


Alex Margolin, The Times of Israel, 12 March 2014

For all its ubiquity, there is no constructive discussion taking place about anti-Semitism. We accuse and they deny. There is no common ground.

10. Picking sides on the ‘world stage’


Terry Glavin, Ottawa Citizen, 28 February 2014

Some of the world’s most notorious gangsters, mass murderers and torturers will be having their affairs attended to and their interests minded with the most assiduous attention to decorum and manners with the opening of the annual sessions of the United Nations Human Rights Council.

NOTE: The views expressed in certain articles are not necessarily those of the South African Zionist Federation

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