During the week covered by this review, we received 8 articles on the following subjects:
Sha’a Tova, November 19; Maariv, November 23, 2015
These articles survey the Molenbeek quarter of Brussels and its connection to terrorism, specifically to the latest attacks in Paris. The articles survey the opinion of the Jewish community in Belgium and in Brussels in particular, and report that despite occasional incidents their ongoing connections with the Arab community are generally calm. However, the Jews in Brussels also state that they are sure this is a fragile calm which could change at any moment, and that the real culprit is incitement from the general Belgian media, “as a result of its lack of objectivity.”
Citing Mr. Pierre Georlette from the Amitiés Belgique-Israël, the Maariv article raises the possibility that Molenbeek became a “breeding ground for terror” as a result of “the actions of Belgian Socialist Party members, who wished to keep their places in the government” and therefore did not set sufficient requirements for immigrants to Belgium. It quotes journalist Tim King’s “Brussels Sketch,” which describes pain, anger, guilt, and despair as being the general public feelings, but says that “no one is surprised, perhaps because the government, being essentially divided, is essentially lacking.” On the other hand, Marc Dogerty, who has lived in Belgium for the past seven years, is convinced that many of the media surveys of Molenbeek are exaggerated, and that the Islamic terror is due mostly to unemployment, low status for women, racial discrimination in the job market, and discontinuity in intelligence tracking of suspects.
HaMagazine Ashdod, November 20, 2015
This article reports changes among the Jewish community in France. It states that despite the significant increase in French emigration, “this is not an exodus” and people are building their move, taking the time to do such things as find the necessarily equivalents to their professional certificates and learn Hebrew. These are “educated people who won’t import their problems with them,” says the article, people who “want to come to Israel prepared to stay and not leave again to Canada or the US.”
Yom L’Yom, November 26, 2015
The Jerusalem district of the Ministry of Education recently held a year-end report card ceremony at the Pavilion Hall in Jerusalem’s Clal building. However, some of the school principals involved notified the anti-missionary activist organization Yad L’Achim ahead of the event; unable to effect a change of location, Yad L’Achim sent activists with leaflets to stand at the entrance, as well as sending a protest letter to the Ministry of Education demanding a standing order preventing such locations being used in the future, and disciplinary measures against those responsible for the event.
Israel Hayom, November 26, 2015
The controversial French comedian Dieudonné M’bala M’bala has recently been sentenced in absentia by a Belgian court to two months in prison for incitement and Holocaust denial. He has also been fined €9,000.
Magazine Ashmoret 360, November 24, 2015
This article details a number of day trips offered by Gal Sport veNofesh during December and January. Of particular note is a trip on December 15 to the Christian sites surrounding the Sea of Galilee, and a trip to the Qasr-al-Yahud baptismal site on Epiphany, January 19, 2016. Reservations may be made at Gal Sport veNofesh (03-6092441; 054-9938331).
Maariv–Luach Zman Tzafon, November 27, 2015
Yad Ezer LaChaver and the Warm Home for Holocaust Survivors recently held a beauty pageant whose participants survived the Holocaust. The pageant was held at the Haifa Congress Center and was attended by public personalities, members of Knesset, government ministers, and relatives. However, the participants, most of whom are in their 90s, agreed that they were most interested in the experience, rather than winning. “I came to Israel and bore three children; all the rest is ‘athletics.’ I’ve won by being here, by living and breathing, by having a family and raising children,” said Sarah Israel (85).
Israel Hayom, November 26, 2015
A rare First Temple–era figurine of a fertility goddess has been found in Tel Beit Shemesh by Itai Halperin (8) of Pardesiya, whose family immediately reported the find to the Israel Antiquities Authority. “I saw a movie about Indiana Jones and decided to be like him when I grow up,” said Itai. “This figurine I found is a dream come true.” Alexander Glick, the IAA archaeologist for the Sharon and Hefer Valley region who received the figurine from Itai, praised him for his good citizenship in reporting the find immediately. Itai and his family will be awarded a certificate of thanks, and his school class will be invited to participate in an IAA dig.