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Daily Briefing: WEDNESDAY’S “NEWS OF THE WEEK IN REVIEW” (August 4, 2021)

MEDIA-OCRITY OF THE WEEK

Is There Really Such A Thing As ‘The American People’?:  Mark Kingwell, Globe and Mail, July 31, 2021[Re] the expression ‘the American people’. If you watch the daily news, the repeated invocation of this term becomes mesmerizing. It clearly has some consonance with the likewise loaded ideological term ‘the American dream’. The definite article is always the sign of significance. That’s the truth… ‘[T]he American people’ tic has made itself into a marker of comprehensive United States exceptionalism, on every side…the saddest part is that there is actually no one U.S. American people now, not even in those crowds who chant “U.S.A., U.S.A., U.S.A.!”d…And as we have been told by the former U.S. president and other politicians and pundits, the deadly Jan.6 Capitol riot was simply a visit by peaceful tourists and loving peoples. So that means that invoking the ‘American people’ is aspirational, akin to wishing for nicer eyebrows and a slimmer torso. That’s not me you see in the photo! It is ugly and fat fake news! America is great and good. Trust me, because I talk loudly and interrupt a lot. I am actually very trim and handsome, with great eyebrows… ‘The American people’ is ideological shorthand, an appeal made against reason and fact that does not diminish its potential power… What talking heads and politicians are really saying is this: Lend me your ears. As a North American not in pursuit of the American dream, but dedicated to liberal democracy, I suggest we all keep those ears on our own heads. My eyebrows remain okay. (Mark Kingwell teaches philosophy at the University of Toronto.)


                                       WEEKLY QUOTES

“Iran already knows the price that we exact when someone threatens our security.  The Iranians need to understand that it is impossible to sit peacefully in Tehran and from there ignite the entire Middle East. That is over.” – Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett after Iran launched a suicide drone attack on the Mercer Street, an Israeli-managed ship, killing a Romanian and a British national.  (Jerusalem Post, Aug. 3, 2021)

“A 2030 survey found that 63% of young American adults were unaware that six million Jews were murdered by the Nazis.” – human rights activist and former political prisoner Natan Sharansky responding to an article titled “On Antisemitism Then and Now.”  (NY Times, July 30, 2021)
 
“Dual loyalties is part of the textbook accusations against Jews. They are cosmopolitans, globalists, not loyal to their country or fellow citizens. She may think she is only criticizing Israel and its policies, but one cannot ignore the fact that she is relying on traditional anti-Semitic tropes to do so. What it suggests to me is that, at best, these people exist in a place where anti-Semitism is out in the ethosphere; they hear it, breath it in, and don’t even recognize it as anti-Semitism.” – scholar Deborah Lipstadt, President Joe Biden’s nominee for U.S. special envoy to monitor and combat anti-Semitism, condemning Rep. Ilhan Omar’s (D-Minn.) anti-Israel comments as “textbook anti-Semitism.”  (WIN, Aug. 3, 2021)
 
“…for some Green party zealots, saving the planet doesn’t work as a priority if it means being moderate on Israel. The Greens have no policy on, for example, China, North Korea or the implosion of South Africa. They are intensely fixated on and hostile to Israel. [Annamie] Paul [the black, Jewish Green leader] is not. There, and only there, is where she offends. The things said in the alleyways and backwaters of Twitter about the Green leader and her ‘Zionist’ leanings are mean and disgusting. And Green matriarch Elizabeth May stands aside mute and unsupportive…perhaps the only issue in decades on which silence is her friend.” – political columnist Rex Murphy.  (National PostJuly 31, 2021)
 
“Canada is a rudderless country whose leader proclaims the dawn of the post-national era as China and a truncated Russia career around the Eurasian land mass celebrating and exploiting…temporary American torpor…we have become a double-masked country with little sense of ourselves….” – political columnist Conrad Black.  (National Post, July 24, 2021)
 
“There has never been a better time or place to be ‘oppressed’ than America in 2021. The oppressed are absolved of any collective responsibility for their actions. Standards are lowered or altogether abolished to ensure they are proportionally represented. Their faux accomplishments are showered with praise. It is no exaggeration to say that America today exists to serve those fortunate enough to be considered oppressed, marginalized, and stigmatized. …The louder they denounce their country and their countrymen, the louder they affirm their innocence. In so doing, they are, of course, playing with fire. How long until the woke come for their jobs, their school, and their homes? This summer, some BLM mobs made it to the suburbs. There will soon come a time when wokeness will no longer excuse whiteness. Will the bien pensants prefer to die off rather than be thought of as racists? As each passing generation grows more radical, the answer to this question grows more uncertain.” — David Azerrad reviewing the book, “SJW Seeks Trans Übermensch” by Mark T. Mitchell, Power and Purity: The Unholy Marriage That Spawned America’s Social Justice Warriors (New York, Regnery, 2021)  (Claremont Review of Books, Spring 2021)


  SHORT TAKES

REPORT: ISRAEL GIVEN GREEN LIGHT TO RETALIATE AGAINST IRAN BY 3 COUNTRIES (Jerusalem) — The U.S., Russia and Britain have given Israel tacit approval to retaliate against Iran for a deadly drone strike on an Israeli-operated ship. The report suggested that Israel might target Iranian vessels, the ship from which the drones were launched, or an Iranian port. Officials in Washington and London said they held Iran responsible for the attack on the Mercer Street, a ship owned by Israel tycoon Eyal Ofer. It was in the Gulf of Oman heading towards the United Arab Emirates when multiple suicide drones struck the ship’s bridge and living quarters. The Romanian captain and a British security guard were killed. The Mercer Street was able to sail on its power to an undisclosed safe port, escorted by the U.S. Navy. (WIN, Aug. 2, 2021)
 
FBI PROBE: CHEMICALS THAT CAUSED BEIRUT BLAST ONLY A FIFTH OF ORIGINAL SHIPMENT (Beirut) — The amount of ammonium nitrate that exploded at Beirut’s port last October in a massive blast was just one-fifth of the original shipment that arrived at the Lebanese capital in 2013, according to an FBI investigation. The blast killed more than 200 people. According to an unsourced assessment publicized on Israel’s Channel 13 news last August, Hezbollah may have planned to use the ammonium nitrate stockpile against Israel in a “Third Lebanon War.”  (Times of Israel, July 30, 2021)
 
ISRAELI ATHLETE MAKES HISTORY WITH COUNTRY’S FIRST OLYMPIC GOLD IN GYMNASTICS (Tokyo) — Artem Dolgopyat won Israel’s first Olympic gold medal in artistic gymnastics in Tokyo, the country’s second-ever Olympic gold. Dolgopyat beat Spanish gymnast Rayderley Zapata in a tiebreaker after both were awarded a score of 14.933 in the event finals. The judges awarded Dolgopyat the win due to his slightly more difficult routine.  (JNS, Aug. 1, 2021)
 
ISRAEL AEROSPACE INDUSTRIES, HENSOLDT TO SUPPLY RADARS TO GERMAN ARMED FORCES (Berlin) — Hensoldt, a Germany-headquartered defense company, is working with Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) to supply new radars to the German Armed Forces. The radars are designed to enable Germany to modernize its airspace surveillance and create ballistic-missile defense capabilities, according to a joint statement. (JNS, July 28, 2021)
 
GOOGLE TO OFFICIALLY ANNOUNCE SUBSEA CABLE TO CONNECT EUROPE AND ASIA VIA ISRAEL (California) — Google will officially announce the launch of its subsea cable project connecting Asia and Europe through Israel. The project will see Google Cloud collaborate with Sparkle, a Telecom Italia company, together with other partners. (Algemeiner, July 29, 2021)
 
3 WOMEN RECEIVE KIDNEYS IN ISRAEL-UAE ORGAN EXCHANGE, 1ST WITH ARAB STATE (Jerusalem, Abu Dhabi) — An Israeli woman has donated a kidney to a recipient on Abu Dhabi, in a first-of-its kind arrangement that will bring a kidney from the United Arab emirates to a different Israeli woman. At 5:30 a.m. on Wednesday, doctors at Sheba Medical Center removed a kidney from Shani Markowitz, 39. The surgery went smoothly, and the organ was raced to Ben Gurion Airport in a special cool box, to be flown to Abu Dhabi. Meanwhile, a woman in Abu Dhabi underwent surgery and her kidney is en route to Israel, for a woman at Rambam Medical Center in Haifa. The husband of the Rambam patient is giving a kidney to Markowitz’s mother, via a surgery at Rabin Medical Center. And Markowitz’s kidney has gone to the mother of the Abu Dhabi donor. (Times of Israel, July 28, 2021)
 
TERRORISM UNDER AUSPICES OF UN HYPOCRISY’: ISRAEL DEMANDS ACTION AFTER REPORT SHOWS UN-PAID TEACHERS CELEBRATE DEATHS OF ISRAELIS (Amman) — Israel’s Ambassador to the US and the UN Gilad Erdan sent to the Secretary-General of the UN and the Commissioner-General of UNRWA harsh letters of complaint demanding immediate action. According to a report published by the UN Watch, over 100 United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) educators and staff have publicly promoted violence and anti-Semitism on social media, actions which clearly violates the agency’s own rules as well as its proclaimed values of zero tolerance for racism, discrimination or anti-Semitism.  (Jewish Press, Aug. 3, 2021)
 
100-YEAR-OLD NAZI GUARD FOUND FIT TO STAND TRIAL, HELPED MURDER 3,518 (Neuruppin) — According to the prosecutor’s office in Neuruppin, Germany, a 100-year-old former concentration camp guard has been found fit to stand trial in October for “knowingly and willingly” assisting in 3,518 murders at the Sachsenhausen concentration camp north of Berlin, between 1942 and 1945. The accused, whose name has so far been kept out of the prosecutor’s announcements, is accused of participating in the “execution by firing squad of Soviet prisoners of war in 1942,” as well as with “the poisonous gas Zyklon B.” (Jewish Press, Aug. 3, 2021)
 
US WARNS OF ‘IRREPARABLE HARM’ CAUSED BY POLISH LEGISLATION CLOSING OFF HOLOCAUST RESTITUTION CLAIMS (Washington) — In a statement opposing the law that closes off Holocaust survivors’ restitution claims, the State Department’s special envoy for Holocaust issues, Cherrie Daniels, warned that it would “cause irreparable harm to both Jews and non-Jews by effectively extinguishing claims for restitution and compensation of property taken during the Holocaust that was subsequently nationalized during the communist period.” The law effectively voids legal disputes over property that go back more than 30 years, when the Communist Party regime that ruled Poland after 1945 was overthrown. (Algemeiner, July 29, 2021)
 
TLAIB, AOC JOIN CALL FOR TREASURY TO STRIP TAX-EXEMPT STATUS FROM US CHARITIES ‘SUPPORTING’ ISRAELI SETTLEMENTS (Washington) — US Representatives Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) and five other Democrats have called for the US Treasury to stop granting tax exemptions to American charitable organizations active in the West Bank and eastern Jerusalem. (Algemeiner, July 29, 2021)
 
‘PEOPLE USE ISRAEL TO ATTACK JEWS,’ SAYS TORONTO MAN WHO SURVIVED ‘FREE PALESTINE’ ANTISEMITIC ASSAULT (Toronto) — In a video posted to his Facebook page, Toronto resident Sam Brody, who wears a kippah, explained that he had been walking his dog in the Eglington neighborhood of the city at around 9 a.m. when a male assailant pushed him into a wooden fence, knocking him onto the ground.  The assailant then told Brody: “F*** you, you Jews, you’ll never take Israel — free Palestine!” Brody said that he was sharing his experience to inform “those who are not aware that antisemitism is a very real and growing problem in our country and around the world. … unfortunately, people use Israel as a platform to attack Jews. Being anti-Israel is the politically correct way of being an antisemite today.” (Algemeiner, July 29, 2021)
 
US COAST GUARD SENDS 27 CUBANS FOUND AT SEA BACK TO COMMUNIST ISLAND (Washington) — The U.S. Coast Guard said that it has repatriated 27 Cuban migrants found at sea to their communist-ruled homeland after it intercepted two groups off Florida’s coast. (Epoch Times, July 29, 2021)

CHINA HOSTS TALIBAN TO TALK AFGHANISTAN (Beijing) — China expressed support for the Taliban’s role in Afghanistan’s future while warning it to cut ties with a separatist movement in the Xinjiang region, in a clear expression of Beijing’s geopolitical goals in the Central Asian country. Just days after meeting with top U.S. officials in the port city of Tianjin, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi welcomed a nine-member delegation from the Taliban that included chief negotiator and top political leader Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar. This comes amid the U.S. withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan. China will not interfere in Afghanistan’s internal affairs, he said, adding that the Taliban is expected to “play an important role in the process of peace, reconciliation and reconstruction” of the country. (Edmonton JournalJuly 29, 2021)
 
CHINA IS RADICALLY EXPANDING ITS NUCLEAR MISSILE SILOS (Beijing) – China is building a second nuclear missile base capable of holding dozens of intercontinental ballistic missiles, satellite images appear to show.  The vast site, spread over 700 sq. miles in the Xinjiang region is thought to house 120 silos for launching weapons, in what has been described as “the most significant expansion of the Chinese nuclear arsenal ever.” (Foreign Policy, June 30 2021)
 
AS PROTESTS SPREAD, TUNISIA’S PRESIDENT SACKS PRIME MINISTER, DEFENSE MINISTER (Tunis) — Thousands of protesters attempted to storm Tunisia’s Parliament Building in the nation’s capital on Tunisia’s Republic Day, after President Kais Saied fired Prime Minister Hichem Mechichi and suspended parliamentary action for 30 days. One day later, Saied also sacked the government’s defense minister. His actions came amid protests over the government’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic and economic issues. Tunisia’s 2014 constitution mandates executive power to be shared by the president, prime minister and the parliament. (Jewish Press, July 26, 2021)

  FOR FURTHER REFERENCE
 
Analysis | Israeli Airstrikes in Syria Shake Up Detente With Russia Amos Harel, Haaretz, July 27, 2021 — Russia’s claim that its aerial defense systems disrupted an Israeli attack, and that it has discussed its criticisms of Israel’s behavior with Washington, surprised the Israeli defense establishment over the weekend.
 
WATCH: GOP Lawmakers Release Bombshell Report on Wuhan Lab Fox News, Aug. 2, 2021 — According to findings from the House Foreign Affairs Committee Republicans’ probe into the possible origins of the coronavirus, there appears to have been a major cover-up, Fox News reports.

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