June 2016

John Pilger

The majority vote by Britons to leave the European Union was an act of raw democracy. Millions of ordinary people refused to be bullied, intimidated and dismissed with open contempt by their presumed betters in the major parties, the leaders of the business and banking oligarchy and the media. This was, in great part, a vote by those angered and demoralised by the sheer arrogance of the apologists for the “Remain” campaign and the dismemberment of a socially just civil life in Britain ... A nineteenth century contempt for countries and peoples, depending on their degree of colonial usefulness, remains a centrepiece of modern “globalisation”, with its perverse socialism for the rich and capitalism for the poor: its freedom for capital and denial of freedom to labour; its perfidious politicians and politicised civil servants.

Stephen Kinzer - Boston Globe

... People want to be governed by leaders from their own “imagined community,” not by outsiders. They want at least the illusion that they control their own fate. The EU has pretended this deep need does not exist, or that it can be wiped away with glittering phrases and promises. Ignoring the deep cultural roots of nationalism has not made it disappear. On the contrary, by attacking the principle of sovereignty so directly, the EU inadvertently fed the nationalist backlash that is now sweeping Europe ... The EU has not listened to its constituents. Like other self-absorbed ruling classes, including those in the United States, it is now paying for its arrogance.

Patrick J. Buchanan

... Across Europe, tribalism, of all strains, is resurgent. Not only does the EU appear to be breaking up, countries appear about to break up. Scotland will seek a second referendum to leave the U.K ... Ethnonationalism seems everywhere ascendant. Yet, looking back in history, is this not the way the world has been going for some centuries now? The disintegration of the EU into its component nations would follow, as Vladimir Putin helpfully points out, the dissolution of the USSR into 15 nations, and the breakup of Yugoslavia into seven ... People want to rule themselves, and be themselves, separate from all others. Palestinians want their own nation. Israelis want “a Jewish state.” ... An anti-establishment, nationalist, populist wave is surging across Europe and the USA. It is an anti-insider, anti-Clinton wave, and Trump could ride it to victory.

The Telegraph (Britain)

Nearly 60 percent of Scots now support Scottish independence after Britain voted to leave the European Union this week, according to a new opinion poll. The Sunday Post said 59 per cent of respondents in the poll backed independence from the United Kingdom. That was sharply higher than the 45 per cent of votes cast in favour of independence at a referendum in 2014 which resulted in the country staying in the UK. Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said earlier on Saturday that a fresh independence referendum was possible. Many Scots voted in favour of remaining in the UK in 2014 because of concerns that breaking away might leave them outside the bloc.

Heather Mac Donald - The Wall Street Journal

Someone was shot in Chicago every 150 minutes during the first five months of 2016. Someone was murdered every 14 hours, and the city saw nearly 1,400 nonfatal shootings and 240 fatalities from gunfire. Over Memorial Day weekend, 69 people were shot, nearly one an hour, topping the previous year’s tally of 53 shootings. The violence is spilling from the Chicago’s gang-infested South and West Sides into the business district downtown. Lake Shore Drive has seen drive-by shootings and robberies ... Police officers who try to intervene in this disorder often face virulent pushback. “People are a hundred times more likely to resist arrest,” a police officer who has worked a decade and a half on the South Side told me.

James Carden - The Nation

Of all the myths that pass for conventional wisdom in Washington in the late Obama years, perhaps one of the most intractable is the idea that the president has “done nothing” concerning Syria ... Yet far from “refusing to be drawn into the conflict in Syria,” the Obama administration has actively financed and trained so-called “moderate” Syrian rebels (who are in fact Salafist extremists in league with Al Qaeda) since 2013. The administration’s parallel efforts — one by the CIA, followed by another run out of the Pentagon — has helped to destabilize the region, contribute to the refugee crisis, and, in targeting the sovereign government of Bashar al-Assad, helped strengthen the geostrategic position of ISIS.

Eric Margolis

War with Russia appears increasingly likely as the US and its NATO satraps continue their military provocations of Moscow. As dangers mount, our foolish politicians should all be forced to read, and then re-read, Prof. Christopher Clark’s magisterial book, 'The Sleepwalkers: How Europe Went to War in 1914.' What is past increasingly appears prologue. Prof. Clark carefully details how small cabals of anti-German senior officials in France, Britain and Russia engineered World War I, a dire conflict that was unnecessary, idiotic, and illogical. Germany and Austria-Hungary of course share some the blame, but to a much lesser degree than the bellicose French, Serbs, Russians and British.

Peter Foster - The Telegraph (Britain)

... Britain’s decision to quite the European Union is a seismic moment for Europe because it points to the inescapable reality that a new national politics – whose angry force was for too long simply denied by the technocrats and governing classes – really is trumping Europe’s supranational ambitions ... More likely, as the politics of the British exit negotiation begin to bite and the nationalist, anti-globalisation movements continue to rise, Europe’s ability to govern itself as a cohesively will diminish. Populism is now the constant knocking in the pipes of European governance ... In the longer term, Europe’s future looks bleak – demographically, economically, geopolitically ...

Ian Bremmer - Time

The 52 percent of the British electorate who voted the U.K. out of the E.U. have signaled clearly that they want to “take back control.” They want to be governed by British leaders, observe British laws and control British borders ... This was a vote against the entire political class. The bums have been tossed. There’s nothing unique to Britain about this sentiment. Populist political parties in France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Greece, the Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark, Austria, Poland and Hungary are banging this same drum with gusto. Listen to Trump and Bernie Sanders. The velocity of change on today’s train has riders scrambling for the emergency brake. ... There is a larger question here for Britain, Europe, America and the world: Do political and business leaders understand the growing demand for change?

Bloomberg

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen called widening wealth disparity between races in the U.S. “extremely disturbing,” and warned that it could reshape consumption patterns in the future ... The Fed’s semi-annual Monetary Policy Report to Congress released Wednesday included a special section titled “Have the Gains of the Expansion Been Widely Shared?” That study concluded that blacks and Hispanics suffered the greatest proportional losses in full-time employment during the recession, and noted those workers’ share remains “significantly depressed” even as hiring has rebounded.

Bonnie Kristian - The American Conservative

While most of our foreign-policy attention is focused on the Middle East, a new danger lurks. According to a number of high-ranking Pentagon officials, that danger is not Russian aggression but rather their own colleagues, who are inflating the threat Russia poses in an effort to boost the Defense Department’s budget ... If Russians confronted the United States military, they would be wildly, laughably outmatched ... “The United States spends seven times the amount of money on defense as Russia ($598 billion vs. $84 billion), has nearly twice the number of active duty personnel (1.4 million vs. 766,000), just under six times as many helicopters (approximately 6,000 vs. 1,200), three times the number of fighters (2,300 vs. 751) and four times the total number of aircraft.”

Rebecca Vilkomerson (Jewish Voice for Peace) - The Washington Post

... I wanted to take concrete action to bring about freedom and full rights for Palestinians. So I embraced the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement. The non-violent effort, started in 2005 by a broad coalition of Palestinian civil society organizations, is a call for solidarity from the international community until Israel complies with international law and ends its violations of Palestinian rights. It’s hard going, though — the governor of my own state, New York, recently condemned BDS in a unilateral executive order ... I believe that Israel won’t change its policies until outside pressure becomes impossible to ignore. BDS is a powerful way to encourage the state to act. And during my time with the movement, we’ve had growing success ... During this time, there’s also been a shift in public opinion.

BBC News

The spiritual leader of Israel's ultra-orthodox Shas party, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, has provoked outrage [April 2001] with a sermon calling for the annihilation of Arabs. "It is forbidden to be merciful to them. You must send missiles to them and annihilate them. They are evil and damnable," he was quoted as saying in a sermon delivered on Monday to mark the Jewish festival of Passover.

J. Frazer - The Times of Israel

The former mayor of London, Ken Livingstone, has again refused to apologize for his remarks about Hitler and Zionism, insisting he was “misquoted” after a radio show in the UK in April ... Livingstone was ultimately suspended himself after declaring, “Let’s remember, when Hitler won his election in 1932, his policy then was that Jews should be moved to Israel. He was supporting Zionism – this before he went mad and ended up killing six million Jews.” ... Professor Bauer added: “Much of what Livingstone says is true, but at the same time distorted. The Ha’avara agreement was motivated, certainly as far as Hitler himself was concerned, by the overwhelming desire to get rid of the Jews of Germany by emigration,” said Bauer.

Allan C. Brownfeld

... When the term "anti-Semitism" is casually used to silence those who are critical of the government of Israel and its policies, it should be noted that Zionism's history of alliance with real anti-Semitism has been long-standing, and this has been so precisely because Zionism and anti-Semitism share a view of Jews which the vast majority of Jews in the United States and elsewhere in the world have always rejected. This rarely discussed chapter of history deserves study, for it illuminates many truths relevant to the continuing debate, both with regard to Middle East policy and the real nature of Jews and Judaism.

AFP

Britain's vote to become the first country to leave the European Union is a shattering blow that threatens the survival of the post-war European project, officials and analysts said. The loss of one of its biggest members will at the very least force major changes on an embattled bloc already struggling to deal with growing populism, a migration crisis and economic woes. In the long-run, "Brexit" may lead to other countries holding referendums, a far looser union, and possibly even the disintegration of a grouping set up 60 years ago to bring security and prosperity after World War II. EU President Donald Tusk warned in the run-up to the vote that Brexit could lead to the "destruction of not only the EU but also of Western political civilisation."

Simon Shuster - Time

In a stunning victory for the anti-establishment forces that have upended mainstream politics across the Western world, British voters chose on Thursday to pull their country out of the European Union, sending global markets into a tailspin and encouraging anti-E.U. forces across the continent to push for their own referenda on whether to break away .... This formula is a familiar one, drawing fuel from a potent mix of xenophobia and angst over the loss of sovereignty and national identity. In the last couple of years, it has been deployed with explosive effects across Europe — and looks set to define the race for the U.S. presidency.

Robert Parry - Consortium News

The United Kingdom’s “Brexit” vote may cause short-term economic pain and present long-term geopolitical risks, but it is a splash of ice water in the face of the West’s Establishment, which has grown more and more insular, elitist and unaccountable over recent decades ... In the stunning “Brexit” vote – with 52 percent wanting to abandon the 28-nation European Union – U.K. voters rejected the West’s politics-as-usual despite dire warnings about the downsides of leaving. They voted, in effect, to assert their own nationalistic needs and aspirations over a commitment to continental unity and its more universal goals.

Daily Mail (Britain)

The BBC 'ignores and despises' millions of Britons because they do not embrace the liberal views of a metropolitan elite, a leaked memo has revealed. The Corporation was said to be 'completely bewildered' about how to respond to the concerns of 'ghastly' ordinary people. There would be no end to the issues facing the broadcaster until the 'London bubble' had burst, said a report by David Cowling, former head of the BBC's political research unit. Sensitive subjects that worried households were barely acknowledged by the political class, his analysis claimed. Although he did not name specific issues, Mr Cowling would almost certainly have in mind mass immigration – routinely among the biggest fears of voters – and the way foreign arrivals have changed communities in the UK.

Daily Mail (Britain)

.. .. Nearly 400,000 Britons died. Millions more were scarred by the experience, physically and mentally. But was it worth it? Her answer - and the answer of many of her contemporaries, now in their 80s and 90s - is a resounding No. They despise what has become of the Britain they once fought to save. It's not our country any more, they say, in sorrow and anger ... They feel, in a word that leaps out time and time again, 'betrayed' ... "Those comrades of mine who never made it back would be appalled if they could see the world as it is today." ... "Our British culture is draining away at an ever increasing pace," wrote an ex-Durham Light Infantryman, "and we are almost forbidden to make any comment."

RT News (Russia) - Video

In a pointed but deftly delivered response to an impertinent question by CNN personality Fareed Zakaria, the Russian president speaks about Donald Trump, the US political system, American “democracy,” and US-Russia relations. The audience seems to enjoy the way that Vladimir Putin deflates the American journalist and author. Runtime: 5:57 mins.

Alastair Crooke – World Post

... There are those in the U.S., Turkey and the Gulf who would welcome such a heightened crisis, hoping that it would become so compellingly serious that no incoming U.S. president, of either hue, could avoid the call to do something upon taking office. In this way, the U.S. could find itself dragged into the maw of another unwinnable Middle Eastern war. We should try to understand the wider dangers better, too. Baiting Russia, under the problematic rubric of countering Russian “aggression,” is very much in fashion now. But in Russia, there is an influential and substantial faction that has come to believe that the West is planning a devastating hybrid military and economic war against it. If this is not so, why is the West so intent on pushing Russia tight up into a corner?

The Guardian (Britain)

A Pennsylvania man who claimed for years to have escaped from Auschwitz, met track and field star Jesse Owens and Nazi doctor Josef Mengele, confessed on Friday that he had fabricated the entire story. “I am writing today to apologize publicly for harm caused to anyone because of my inserting myself into the descriptions of life in Auschwitz,” Joseph Hirt, 86, wrote in a letter sent to his local paper, LNP, this week. “I was not a prisoner there. I did not intend to lessen or overshadow the events which truly happened there by falsely claiming to have been personally involved.” “I was wrong. I ask forgiveness,” he added. “I determined at that moment to do everything in my power to prevent the loss of the truth about wartime life (and death) at Auschwitz.”

Ted Galen Carpenter - The National Interest

The announcement that NATO would deploy four battalions of troops to the Baltic republics and Poland is merely the latest evidence that Western officials are utterly tone deaf about how their actions are going to be received in Moscow ... There is also a pervasive bipartisan assumption that Russia is an aggressively expansionist power ... But is it a valid assumption? During the Cold War, Moscow was animated by a messianic global ideology. Today’s Russia is not. The Soviet Union aggressively attempted to extend its influence into far-flung portions of the world. Today’s Russia seems to focus on Eastern Europe, Central Asia and the Black Sea — all areas that have obvious strategic importance to even the most defensive-minded Russian state.

Eric Margolis

... That old imperialist, Winston Churchill, patron saint of America’s neocon right, dismissed India’s great Mahatma Gandhi as a 'half-naked fakir.' He loved the British Empire and sneered, like many of his countrymen, at “the lesser races.” Problem is, that the “lesser races” have poured into Britain since the 1950’s, changing its traditional character, politics, and rules. White Britons are losing ground in the new, multicultural United Kingdom, just as whites in California are headed for minority status. A lot of Brits, particularly north of London, don’t like it. Add now the flood of over a million Arab and African refugees into the Continent has many Britons in a frenzy that their happy little island faces growing troubles ... But a British departure from the union would be very unwise, even tragic.

The Jerusalem Post (Israel)

The United States must consider profiling suspected terrorists based on race given the apparent scourge of extremism afflicting the country’s Muslim communities, Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, charged on Sunday. “You look at Israel and you look at others and they do it and they do it successfully," he said. “I hate the concept of profiling, but we have to start using common sense," he told CBS News' Face the Nation. Trump also alleged that French authorities are monitoring mosques across their country, and said the US should "respectfully" do the same.

C. Shalev - Haaretz (Israel)

One can argue whether Israel is or isn’t a light unto the nations, but it has certainly served as role model for Donald Trump in recent weeks. On Monday, Trump cited Israel’s “success” as a reason for American to rethink its attitude towards racial profiling. In the past, he has praised the efficacy of Israeli barriers in keeping out terrorists and illegal immigrants as an inspiration for the controversial wall he wants to build along the U.S. border with Mexico. “If you think walls don’t work, just ask Israel,” he says.

Daniel Michaels – Institute for Historical Review

… Free Russian and German historians are collaborating to ascertain the historical decisions and actions that led to that bloodiest of all conflicts. Wolfgang Strauss, a respected German Slavicist and political analyst, explains this clarifying historical process in "Operation Barbarossa and the Russian Historians' Dispute," … He examines here the research of revisionist scholars in Russia and Germany on Stalin's role in igniting the German-Russian conflict and his efforts to expand the Soviet empire across Europe … Strauss affirms the view of German historian Ernst Nolte that Hitler's militant anti-Communism was an understandable reaction to the looming Soviet threat to Europe and humanity.

Paul Goble - Eurasia Review

A few days after Hitler broke his alliance with Stalin and invaded the Soviet Union, the Soviet dictator used a diplomatic back channel to explore whether the Nazi leader would be prepared to end the war if Stalin agreed to hand over to German rule Ukraine, the Baltic republics and perhaps even more. That is the conclusion of a Friday article by historian Nikita Petrov in “Novaya gazeta” an article that undercuts both Stalin’s carefully cultivated stance as someone who was prepared to fight the invader to the end and Vladimir Putin’s use of World War II as a legitimating and mobilizing tool in Russia today.

AFP

A buyer who said he came from Argentina spent over 600,000 euros on Nazi memorabilia, including one of Adolf Hitler’s uniform jackets, at a controversial auction in Germany, a report said Monday. The mystery buyer, dressed in dark clothes and wearing a baseball cap, spent 275,000 euros ($312,000) on the jacket alone and 3,000 euros for a set of Hermann Goering’s silken underwear, among over 50 items he purchased, reported Bild daily ... Last week the Central Council of Jews in Germany had appealed to the auction house Hermann Historica to cancel the event, charging it was “scandalous and disgusting” to make money with Nazi relics in such an auction.

Patrick J. Buchanan

Some 50 State Department officials have signed a memo calling on President Obama to launch air and missile strikes on the Damascus regime of Bashar Assad. A “judicious use of stand-off and air weapons,” they claim, “would undergird and drive a more focused and hard-nosed U.S.-led diplomatic process.” In brief, to strengthen the hand of our diplomats and show we mean business, we should start bombing and killing Syrian soldiers. Yet Syria has not attacked us. And Congress has not declared war on Syria, or authorized an attack ... Wherever, across the Middle East, we have plunged into wage war — Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Yemen, Syria — people continue to suffer and die, and we are ensnared. Have we not fought enough wars in this Godforsaken region?

The Telegraph (Britain)

The German foreign minister has broken ranks with Nato allies, accusing the alliance of “warmongering” against Russia. Frank-Walter Steinmeier spoke out against recent Nato military exercises in Poland and the Baltics, describing them as “sabre-rattling”. “The one thing we shouldn’t do now is inflame the situation with loud sabre-rattling and warmongering,” the minister told Bild am Sonntag newspaper. “Anyone who thinks a symbolic tank parade on the alliance’s eastern border will bring security is wrong,” he said in excerpts released ahead of a longer interview to be published on Sunday. “We would be well advised not to provide a pretext to renew an old confrontation.” Mr Steinmeier was speaking after Nato staged its largest war game in eastern Europe since the end of the Cold War earlier this month.

Mark Weber – Video

Important evidence has come to light in recent decades that shatters the familiar, endlessly repeated view that Hitler, bent on world conquest, launched a treacherous surprise attack against a peaceful Soviet Union. By June 1941 Soviet dictator Stalin had built the world's largest military machine, and had deployed an enormous strike force in readiness for a massive attack against Germany that would roll on to overwhelm central and western Europe. Hitler's “Barbarossa” attack, say a growing number of historians in Russia, Germany and other countries, was actually a preventive war to forestall an imminent Soviet strike. This 50-minute video has received more than 190,000 views.

Institute for Historical Review

... The moment has now come when to continue as a mere observer would not only be a sin of omission but a crime against the German people -- yes, even against the whole of Europe. Today something like 160 Russian divisions are standing at our frontier ... The task of this front, therefore, is not merely the protection of individual countries, but the safeguarding of Europe, and thereby the salvation of all. I therefore decided today to once again lay the fate and future of the German Reich and our people in the hands of our soldiers. May the Lord God help us especially in this fight!

Asya Pereltsvaig

... It appears that by resettling whole populations in Siberia, Central Asia, and the Far North, Stalin was also clearing out much of the Western border zone, presumably in preparation for an offensive against Nazi Germany. Although the thesis that Stalin was poised to invade Nazi-controlled territories in July 1941 is highly controversial among historians, it is significant that most ethnic groups deported prior to June 22, 1941 ... came from the border zone stretching from Karelia in the north to the Black Sea in the south ... Most of the mass deportation occurred in 1930s and 1940s, when numerous ethnic groups were removed from their historical homelands ... Between 1935 and 1938 alone, no less than nine nationalities were deported: Poles, Germans, Finns, Estonians, Latvians, Koreans, Chinese, Kurds, and Iranians.

Tom Segev - Haaretz (Israel)

... A few years ago Shauli read "Icebreaker: Who Started the Second World War" ... From out of the sea of details, a coherent thesis emerges: Stalin dragged Hitler into war to force Europe into chaos and facilitate a communist revolution on the continent. According to Shauli, there is [additional] evidence to back up this theory, including a speech by Stalin himself as well as a report obtained by the U.S. Consulate in Prague ... The document is in his possession, and now the history of World War II may have to be rewritten: It was Stalin's fault.

Robert Parry – Consortium News

The Democratic Party has moved from being what you might call a reluctant war party to an aggressive war party with its selection of Hillary Clinton as its presumptive presidential nominee. With minimal debate, this historic change brings full circle the arc of the party’s anti-war attitudes that began in 1968 and have now ended in 2016 ... Former Secretary of State Clinton has made it clear that she is eager to use military force to achieve “regime change” in countries that get in the way of U.S. desires. She abides by neoconservative strategies of violent interventions especially in the Middle East and she strikes a belligerent posture as well toward nuclear-armed Russia and, to a lesser extent, China. ... Donald Trump, for all his faults, has adopted a relatively peaceful point of view, especially in the Mideast and with Russia.

The Washington Post

... In its prime, about 2,100 years ago, the Antikythera (an-ti-KEE-thur-a) Mechanism was a complex, whirling, clockwork instrument comprising at least 30 bronze gears bearing thousands of interlocking tiny teeth. Powered by a single hand crank, the machine modeled the passage of time and the movements of celestial bodies with astonishing precision ... The sum of all these moving parts was far and away the most sophisticated piece of machinery found from ancient Greece. Nothing like it would appear again until the 14th century, when the earliest geared clocks began to be built in Europe.

JTA

A $20 million gift will help the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum refurbish its 20-plus-years-old exhibit, with a focus on the challenges posed to democracies by rapid changes in technology. Allan and Shelley Holt announced their grant on Monday in honor of the parents of Allan Holt, who are Holocaust survivors. Holt, an investment manager at the Carlyle Group, an influential Washington consulting outfit, is also vice-chairman of the museum’s governing board. It is one of the largest gifts in the museum’s history and will go toward a $540 million campaign aimed at revitalizing the museum, the museum said in a release.

J. McMahon -- Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

Since it first opened ten years ago [in 1993], one of Washington, DC’s most popular attractions has been the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, located adjacent to the National Mall … Now [2003] American taxpayers provide some 67 percent of the Holocaust Museum’s annual budget, this year to the tune of $38.4 million. Its funding for fiscal year 2004 was increased to $39,997,000 … Then-President Bill Clinton signed legislation granting the museum permanent status as a federal agency, in effect locking in federal support.

The Times of Israel

Former prime minister Ehud Barak blasted Israel’s current government on Thursday evening, saying it was putting the country on the path to becoming an “apartheid state,” and should be brought down if it fails to get back on track. Calling the Netanyahu government “weak, flaccid and noisy,” Barak lobbed criticism after criticism at the Israeli leader and his ministers in a blistering speech at the Herzliya Conference, accusing them of operating based on a “covert agenda” to make a two-state solution untenable ... “Hitlerization by the prime minister cheapens the Holocaust,” he said. “Our situation is grave even without [comparisons to] Hitler.” ... “Only a blind person or a sheep, an ignoramus or someone jaded, can’t see the erosion of democracy and the ‘budding fascism,'” Barak said, to considerable applause from the audience.

World Jewish Congress

A court in France sentenced the anti-Semitic writer Alain Soral to a suspended six-month prison sentence for saying the Nazis should have finished killing the Jews of Europe. The sentence came after Soral posted on his Facebook page last year about Serge and Beate Klarsfeld, two anti-racism activists who helped track down dozens of Nazi war criminals, stating: "This is what happens when you don’t finish the job." ... A judge found Soral, who is a well-known writer in far-right circles and an ally of the anti-Semitic comedian Dieudonne M’bala M’bala, guilty of "justifying war crimes and crimes against humanity." In the past, Soral was convicted several times for minimizing or mocking the Holocaust.

Frontiers in Psychology - ScienceDaily

Is beauty only skin deep? Children don't seem to think so, like adults and babies, children think the uglier you are, the less trustworthy you are. In a study recently published in Frontiers in Psychology, researchers have found that as children, how we perceive someone's trustworthiness is linked to how attractive we find them. Our ability to make this trustworthiness judgement develops as we grow, becoming more consistent as we approach adulthood, and, girls are better at it than boys. Many psychology studies have proven the existence of the so-called "beauty stereotype." This describes the phenomenon whereby more attractive people are also considered to be smarter, more sociable and more successful. To be attractive is to be treated better by your peers, and preferred by new-born babies, than uglier people.

Associated Press

A 94-year-old former SS sergeant was found guilty Friday of 170,000 counts of accessory to murder and sentenced to five years in prison for serving as an Auschwitz guard, in a verdict that survivors from the Nazi death camp hailed as a long overdue victory. Reinhold Hanning, sitting in a wheelchair, listened attentively but showed no reaction as Presiding Judge Anke Grudda read the ruling in state court in Detmold, Germany. ... “You were in Auschwitz for two and a half years and performed an important function,” she said. “You were part of a criminal organization and took part in criminal activity in Auschwitz,” she said ... Hanning’s defense had called for an acquittal, saying there is no evidence he killed or beat anyone, while prosecutors sought a six-year sentence.

Mark Weber

A highly publicized German exhibition of atrocities allegedly carried out by regular German army forces during the Second World War has been closed down in the wake of revelations that many of the harrowing photographs it displayed are deceitful. The organizers of "War of Annihilation: Crimes of the German Armed Forces, 1941-1944," announced the shutdown ... after ever more evidence had come to light proving that much of the controversial exhibit is fraudulent ... In one exhibition photo, Musial explains, the corpses shown were actually Ukrainians who had been killed by the Soviet security police ...

Ted Galen Carpenter - The National Interest

Since the end of World War II, U.S. officials have spurned George Washington’s advice that the republic should avoid permanent alliances ... Because of the vast number of security obligations the United States has undertaken over the decades, the system now resembles an overgrown garden in desperate need of pruning. Formal and informal security commitments now make the United States responsible for the security of more than sixty percent of the planet. One doesn’t have to be an alarmist to believe that such a burden is the operational definition of strategic overextension ... Our intellectually bankrupt political and foreign policy establishments may be oblivious to the danger, but critics need to focus attention on the pertinent issues. Pruning Washington’s haphazard, overgrown alliances is a good place to begin.

Dinyar Patel - BBC News

... This summer also marks the 150th anniversary of a far more terrible and catastrophic climatic event: the Orissa famine of 1866. Hardly anyone today knows about this famine ... The Orissa famine killed over a million people in eastern India. In modern-day Orissa state, the worst hit region, one out of every three people perished, a mortality rate far more staggering than that caused by the Irish Potato Famine. The Orissa famine also became an important turning point in India's political development, stimulating nationalist discussions on Indian poverty ... For such reasons, it is all the more important to remember the Orissa Famine today. This humanitarian disaster, and the others that followed, galvanized Indians into fighting against British colonial rule.

Robert Fisk - The Independent (Britain)

The Middle East is littered with missed opportunities, lost chances and dreams turned to dust. The Iranian nuclear deal is now heading in the same direction. President Hassan Rohani, hero of the hour and Iran’s new Mr Good Guy in America, even obtained the support of Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, when he signed off on the agreement with six world powers last year to reduce the country’s nuclear activities in return for an end to Western sanctions. But he’s beginning to look like a patsy ... The sanctions have been lifted – but they haven’t been lifted. Western investments are not, despite all the promises, pouring into Iran because banks – especially European banks – are too frightened of breaching the rest of America’s sanctions laws to do business with the Islamic Republic.

Video

This trailer introduces “Denial,” a feature film that portrays the legal battle between British historian David Irving and Jewish-American academic Deborah Lipstadt. In the film, set for release in theaters on Sept. 30, Rachel Weisz plays Lipstadt, and Irving is portrayed by Timothy Spall. The much publicized Irving-Lipstadt libel trial in London concluded in April 2000 with a detailed ruling by Judge Charles Gray that was a harsh rebuke of the British historian.

Anne Joseph - Forward (New York)

... Bilgorri’s place in British men’s fashion history is just one of the stories highlighted in “Moses, Mods and Mr Fish: The Menswear Revolution,” the latest exhibition at Jewish Museum London. For over 100 years, British menswear set fashion trends that led the world and many of the most influential and innovative figures during this period were Jews ... By the 1960s and early 1970s, London was the most exciting fashion capital in the world. Responding to the stylistic demands of its youth, an explosion of Jewish owned menswear boutiques sprang up in Carnaby Street — the shopping destination in Swinging Sixties London.

JTA

Michigan public schools must teach about genocide, including the Holocaust and the Armenian Genocide, under a new law. The legislation, which was signed into law on Tuesday by the state’s governor, Rick Snyder, calls for six hours of instruction about genocide between eighth and 12th grade. It specifically mentions the Holocaust and the Armenian Genocide, which began in 1915, but other mass killings must be taught, according to The Associated Press.

Daily Mail (Britain)

A new academic study has rocked the government in Berlin as people call for a ‘dictatorship in the national interest’ with one in ten wanting a new Führer to lead them to glory. The University of Leipzig’s research team found that nearly 34 per cent of people quizzed thought Germany is ‘dangerously overpopulated by foreigners.’ A total of 21.9 per cent agreed that Germany needs ‘a single strong party that embodies the national community as a whole’. One in every ten Germans wants their country to be led by a ‘Führer’ applying ‘a firm hand for the common good.’ And 71 years after Nazism was vanquished and the horror of the death camps revealed to a stunned world, eleven per cent of people questioned by the university researchers said Jews have too much influence in society.

Kenneth M. Johnson - University of New Hampshire

The Great Recession sent an economic shock through American society that reached far beyond the stock and housing markets. More than five years after economists announced the end of the recession, fertility levels have still not recovered. As a result, more than 3.4 million fewer babies were born in the United States between 2008 and 2015 than would have been expected if pre-recession fertility rates had been sustained. In each of the last five years, this birth deficit has resulted in roughly 500,000 fewer births. Nor do new data just released show any evidence of an upturn in births. National Center for Health Statistics data for 2015 show the lowest general fertility rate on record and only 3,978,000 births last year.

Chas Freeman – The National Interest

... European imperial powers and, latterly, the United States, have repeatedly sought to convert Arabs, Persians and Turks to the secular values of the European Enlightenment, to democratize them, to impose Western models of governance on them in place of indigenous, Islamic systems, and more recently to persuade them to accept a Jewish state in their midst ... The United States must cease to provide blank checks to partners in the region prone to misguided and counterproductive policies and actions that threaten American interests as well as their own prospects. No more Yemens. No more Gazas or Lebanons. No more military guarantees that disincentivize diplomacy aimed at achieving long-term security for Israel.

Jonathan Boyd - The Jewish Chronicle (Britain)

... The 2010 JPR survey of British Jewish attitudes towards Israel found that 82 per cent of British Jews say that Israel plays either a central or important part in their Jewish identity ... In the 2013 National Jewish Community Survey, JPR asked British Jews which aspects of Jewishness were most important to them. In one of the strongest responses, 89 per cent highlighted "feeling part of the Jewish people," a much higher proportion than those who identified God, prayer or indeed anything in the realm of religious observance. The reason for that is because the Jews are a people over and above a religious group ... Yet, statistically, for most British Jews, being a Jew and a Zionist are one and the same. They cannot be separated out.

Gilad Atzmon

Anti’ Zionist Jews insist that Zionism and being Jewish are entirely different matters that have nothing to do with each other. Jonathan Boyd, the Executive Director of the Institute for Jewish Policy Research (JPR) claims the opposite. According to Boyd, statistics proves that “being a Jew and a Zionist are one and the same, they cannot be separated out.” ... There you go. Jewishness is a blood related identity, call it biology or race or a matter of conversion. Conversion into what? You guessed right --collective narcissism, self love or shall we simply say, ‘choseness.’

Jonathan Cook

Israel is locking away millions of official documents to prevent the darkest episodes in its history from coming to light, civil rights activists and academics have warned as the country’s state archives move online. They claim government officials are concealing vital records needed for historical research, often in violation of Israeli law, in an effort to avoid damaging Israel’s image ... The current emphasis on concealment contrasts with the late 1980s, when parts of the archives from the 1948 war were opened. A handful of Israeli historians, most notably Benny Morris, Ilan Pappe and Avi Shlaim, revealed that much of Israel’s official history of the state’s founding was based on misinformation. These “new historians” unearthed evidence of wide-scale massacres of Palestinians, rapes and forced expulsions.

Editorial - Haaretz (Israel)

The murderous terror attack at Tel Aviv’s Sarona Market took the lives of four Israelis on Wednesday ... It’s amazing how the Israeli government does not learn its lesson and recognize what should have been clear long ago: The terror will continue as long as the Palestinian people have no hope on the horizon. No military steps will eradicate it and no boastful declarations will end it. The only way to deal with terrorism is by freeing the Palestinian people from the occupation. Until then, the Palestinians will continue their opposition using force, as most peoples have done throughout history.

NBC News

The U.S. obesity epidemic continues to worsen: The latest reports show that 40 percent of U.S. women are obese, and American teenagers are also continuing to put on weight. The two reports from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that efforts to encourage Americans to lose weight — at least to stop putting on more weight — are having little effect. Overall, 38 percent of U.S. adults are obese and 17 percent of teenagers are, the two reports find. That's obese — medically defined as having a body mass index (BMI), a measure of height to weight, that's more than 30. Another third or so of Americans are overweight.

Joseph A. Mussomeli - The Washington Post

... What really troubles them is his generally level-headed and unmessianic attitude toward foreign affairs. Trump has no desire to make the rest of the world in our image; he is concerned only about the world not making America in its image. The neocons bemoan Trump’s rejection of a global role for the United States, but Trump has no intent to withdraw the United States from the world stage. He only rejects the wanton use of our young men and women on foreign adventures of questionable value ... Trump, for all his bizarre commentary on domestic issues, better grasps the subtleties of global politics and the dangers of thinking ourselves infallible and invincible. It’s quite an irony: The ostensibly more reckless, infantile, inexperienced and bombastic candidate may actually be more mature, level-headed and reasonable on foreign policy than his critics ...

Philip Giraldi

... The attack on the U.S.S. Liberty by Israeli warplanes and torpedo boats on June 8, 1967, has almost faded from memory, with a younger generation completely unaware that a United States naval vessel was once deliberately attacked and nearly sunk by America’s “greatest friend and ally” Israel ... So the treatment of the U.S.S. Liberty should surprise no one in a country whose governing class has been for decades doing the bidding of the powerful lobby of a tiny client state that has been nothing but trouble and expense for the United States of America. Will it ever end? As the Israel Lobby currently controls the relevant parts of the federal government and much of the media change is not likely to happen overnight, but there are some positive signs.

James Bamford

... Geis was shocked by what he heard next." President Lyndon Johnson came on with a comment that he didn't care if the ship sunk, he would not embarrass his allies." Geis told Lieutenant Commander David Lewis, head of the NSA group on the Liberty, about the comment but asked him to keep it secret until after Geis died. It was a promise that Lewis kept ... Despite the overwhelming evidence that Israel had attacked the ship and killed the American servicemen deliberately, the Johnson administration and Congress covered up the entire incident. Johnson was planning to run for president the following year and needed the support of pro-Israel voters.

Ted Galen Carpenter - The National Interest

Two developments in the past month indicate that Washington’s mixed policy of engagement and containment (or “congagement”) toward China has begun to tilt more toward containment ... The United States needs to lower, not increase, its level of confrontation toward China. That also means restoring respect for the concept of spheres of influence. In attempting to preserve U.S. primacy in East Asia and the western Pacific, U.S. leaders are intruding into the South China Sea and other areas that logically matter far more to China than to America. Such a strategy is likely to result either in a humiliating U.S. retreat under pressure or a disastrous military collision. A containment strategy is a feeble attempt to evade that reality.

Glayde Whitney -- Institute for Historical Review

When real history is finally written, mainstream social sciences during most of the twentieth century will be exposed as consisting largely of ethnically motivated disinformation. Much has already been written about the subversion of American anthropology: the shift from legitimate science to ideological pap under the direction of the Jewish immigrant Franz Boas. Much less has been written about how psychology was transformed from a branch of natural science into a section of the Marxist-influenced social sciences. In this paper I will provide information on the subversion of psychology, pointing out the role of Boas and others in the subversion of psychology.

Sam Francis

Two of the major superstitions of our time are the notion that man is merely a blank slate whose behavior is merely the product of the social environment and its sister, that race doesn’t exist. Yet one by one, the pseudo-scientific sources of these myths are being discredited by serious scientists, and last week, one of the biggest sources of all took a nose dive. Franz Boas, often called the grandfather of modern anthropology and a pioneer pusher of the idea that race is not a very meaningful concept, merely a “social construct” not found in nature, probably ranks with Karl Marx and Sigmund Freud as one of the most influential thinkers of the modern age.

Uri Avnery (Israel)

... Slowly, very slowly, Israel’s international horizon is darkening. Small things are happening every day all around the world. A resolution here, a boycott there, a condemnation, a demonstration. The Israel that was universally admired disappeared long ago. The BDS [Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions] movement is immensely successful. It does not really hurt the Israeli economy. But it creates a mood, first on the campuses and then around them. Jewish institutions are sending SOS messages ... Israel‘s worsening international standing is worrying. Even Netanyahu is worried. Slowly but surely the world is accepting the State of Palestine as a fact of life and as a condition for peace.

EJP

Approximately one-third of the Hungarian population shares the most widespread anti-Semitic beliefs to some degree, a study on the prevalence of anti-Semitic prejudice in Hungarian society shows. The survey by Median Opinion and Market Research Institute was commissioned by Action and Protection Foundation (TEV). It shows that the level of anti-Semitism has grown somewhat over the last year and that prejudices against Jews are closely related to xenophobia in general. Median researchers gathered information on opinions and beliefs related to Jews, the frequency and strength of anti-Semitic prejudice, and perceptions of anti-Semitism and associations related to Jews.

The Washington Times

America, land of peace? Not necessarily. The U.S. no longer ranks in the top 100 most peaceful nations on Earth. It stands at No. 103, according to the Global Peace Index, a comprehensive statistical analysis that quantifies the relative peacefulness of 162 countries. Such nations as Cuba, Gabon, Sri Lanka, Haiti and Bangladesh are ranked as “more peaceful” than America, the massive study found. Released Wednesday, the tenth annual assessment is data-driven and measures such influences as internal crime statistics, political forces, refugee activity, population trends and other factors — including terrorism, the number of homicides and economic conditions. The most peaceful spots on the planet? Iceland, followed by Denmark, Austria, New Zealand, Portugal, Czech Republic, Switzerland, Canada, Japan and Slovenia for the top ten.

C. Schleier - Forward (New York)

“The Rabbi Who Can Bless Your Movie.” That was the headline in “The Hollywood Reporter’s” Oscar issue in March. And if that sounds a bit incongruous, it gets more interesting. The rabbi in question is Marvin Hier, founder and dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center and its affiliated Museum of Tolerance. So you may ask, how come a rabbi is “blessing” movies? ... “I just thought this was an incredible story, how some of the most powerful people in Hollywood hold him in such high esteem.” Speak with Rabbi Hier directly and it turns out the Hollywood connection is not surprising at all. It was beshert (or as he calls his recently published memoir, “Meant to Be).

Mark Weber - Institute for Historical Review

Since its founding in 1977, the Simon Wiesenthal Center has grown to become one of the most important and influential Jewish organizations in the world … The Wiesenthal Center has a long record of reckless propaganda for war. Long before the US invasion of Iraq in March 2003, it had been pressing for an American attack against the Middle East nation, backing its effort with alarmist “Big Lie” claims about the supposed danger posed by the Baghdad regime.

Lawrence Swaim

… In any case, it is now known that Wiesenthal, a born story-teller, rarely let the facts get in the way of a good story — in fact many of the things he claimed to have done were fabrications. This recently came to light with the publication, in June of 2009, of Hunting Evil, by British Author Guy Walters, in which he characterizes Simon Wiesenthal as “a liar — and a bad one at that.” … Wiesenthal’s scant regard for the truth makes it possible to doubt everything he ever wrote or said.” … The Simon Wiesenthal Center is, rather, committed to using the Holocaust to raise money, and using the trauma associated with it to promote the Center’s extremist political perspectives.

Mark Weber

… Wiesenthal's reputation as a moral authority is undeserved. The man whom The Washington Post has called the "Holocaust's Avenging Angel" has a little known but well-documented record of reckless disregard for truth. He has lied about his own wartime experiences, misrepresented his postwar "Nazi-hunting" achievements, and has spread vile falsehoods about alleged German atrocities.

The Times of Israel

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump on Friday said the US must strengthen its alliance with Israel, in an address strongly critical of Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton. Reading mostly from a teleprompter, in a speech to Evangelical voters in Washington, Trump delivered a sharp rebuke of Clinton, declaring her “unfit to be president” while vowing to “restore faith to its proper mantle in American society.” As he took the stage, Trump boasted of the support he’s received from evangelicals Christians ... He said the US must strengthen its alliance with Israel to ensure its security, and added that the entire world must learn how to deal with radical Islam.

Gareth Porter - Truthout

In yet another a dangerous US political-diplomatic move in Syria, the Obama administration is going out of its way to protect the interests of al-Qaeda's closest and most powerful ally in Syria, Ahrar al-Sham. The administration's decision to shield the Islamist organization from the consequences of collaborating closely with al-Qaeda's Syrian branch, Nusra Front, in threatening what had been a promising "cessation of hostilities," goes much further than the US failure to pressure other armed opposition groups to separate themselves from Nusra Front, as US Secretary of State John Kerry had promised in negotiations with his Russian counterpart, Sergey Lavrov.
Ahrar al-Sham is believed to be the largest military force seeking to overthrow the Assad regime in Syria, with at least 15,000 troops.

BBC News

Italian newspaper Il Giornale has come under fire for offering free annotated copies of Adolf Hitler's Mein Kampf with one of its supplements. Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi described the decision as "squalid," while others criticised the paper for using the book to increase sales. The paper argued the move would educate readers about the evils of Nazism ... Il Giornale sold a history book about Nazi Germany with its Saturday edition, and offered readers who purchased the book a free copy of Mein Kampf. The editor, Alessandro Sallusti, said (in Italian) that the move would let readers "study what is evil to avoid its return" ... The newspaper also stressed that the version it was giving away was annotated with critical commentary by an Italian historian.

The Local (Austria)

Austria's interior minister remarked that a good 'final solution' for Hitler's birth house would be for it to be demolished, speaking on national television on Saturday night. Minister Wolfgang Sobotka made the remarks in a television interview on channel ORF. The house has been regularly in the news, with the latest decision apparently resulting in a parliamentary bill to expropriate the house in the small town of Braunau am Inn, near the German border. Controversy has raged since its current owner refuses to allow renovation or sale of the house, with fears that it could be turned into a shrine for neo-Nazis.

Pew Research Center

On June 23, people in the United Kingdom will vote on a referendum on whether to remain in the European Union or to leave the Brussels-based institution, a decision that has come to be called Brexit. The British go to the polls at a time when a new multi-nation survey from Pew Research Center finds that Euroskepticism is on the rise across Europe, and that about two-thirds of both the British and the Greeks, along with significant minorities in other key nations, want some powers returned from Brussels to national governments ... A median of just 51 percent across ten EU countries surveyed have a favorable view of the European Union. A median of 42 percent in these ten nations want more power returned to their national capitals, while only 19 percent favor giving Brussels more power and 27 percent favor the status quo.

The Washington Post

... In the past year, debates such as this have burbled in town meetings across the country. Mostly, discussions are related to Civil War monuments — in Louisiana, Maryland, Virginia and Texas — following the 2015 mass shooting at a historically black church in Charleston, S.C. But sometimes the discussion is broader: Last fall a cohort of Princeton students lobbied the administration to remove likenesses of Woodrow Wilson from the school’s campus because of his segregationist beliefs. And last month, Andrew Jackson was toppled by Harriet Tubman off the front of the $20 bill; supporters of the swap cited, among other reasons, Jackson’s wretched treatment of American Indians ... The narrative of America’s history has never been solely about what happened, but how we remember what happened.

Time

These 13 striking color photographs show destruction, wreckage and ruin in the aftermath of the historic World War II evacuation from Dunkirk. In this historic undertaking, British naval craft evacuated some 340,000 military personnel from the coastal city in northern France, May 27 to June 4, 1940. (Some 40,000 were left behind and killed or captured.) British authorities decided on the evacuation as large numbers of British, French and Belgian troops were being cut off and surrounded by German forces during the “Battle of France.” Hugo Jaeger, allegedly “one of Hitler’s personal photographers,” took the vivid pictures shortly after the Allies had left. Some years after the war, he sold the photos, and all rights to them, to the American magazine Life.

JTA

Italy’s Parliament approved a bill making spreading Holocaust denial illegal. The bill, which adds to an existing anti-racism bill, was approved Wednesday evening by the lower assembly of the Parliament, the Chamber of Deputies, by a vote of 237-5, with 102 abstentions. The new law would go after those who deny genocide or crimes against humanity, using the definition by the International Court of Justice, the German news agency DPA reported. Those convicted could face prison terms of two to six years. The measure punishes ideas “based entirely or partly” on negationist ideology only when “there is a real danger of their dissemination,” according to DPA.

Patrick J. Buchanan

... Trump is cheered today because he defies the commands of political correctness, and, to the astonishment of enemies and admirers alike, he gets away with it ... Trump’s rebellion is not only against the Republican elite but against the establishment’s claim to define what is right and wrong, true and false, acceptable and unacceptable, in this republic ... These Republicans seem to believe that, if or when Trump goes down, this whole unfortunate affair will be over, and they can go back to business as usual. Sorry, but there is no going back ... People sense that the fate and future of the West are in the balance ... Call it identity politics, call it tribalism, call it ethnonationalism; it and Islamism are the two most powerful forces on earth.

Philip Giraldi - The American Conservative

... Graphic photos and videos from the Middle East, Asia, and Africa continue to show the downside of the “New World Order,” the global system operating under American direction envisioned by President George H.W. Bush in 1991. They also demonstrate the enormous perceptual gap between much of the world and the United States, which has not had a hostile force penetrate its borders since Pancho Villa rode into New Mexico in 1916. America does not know and does not understand the reality of war, which renders the bellicose pronouncements made by presidential candidates as so much background noise ... Drone warfare aside, Americans should be appalled by how many people their elected government has directly or indirectly killed since the War on Terror began nearly 15 years ago ...

Robert Parry - Consortium News

Hillary Clinton made a strong case for why handing the nuclear codes over to a President Donald Trump would be a scary idea, but there may be equal or even greater reason to fear turning them over to her. In perhaps the most likely area where nuclear war could break out – along Russia’s borders – Clinton comes across as the more belligerent of the two ... In short, there is reason to fear the election of either of these candidates, one because of his unpredictability and the other because of her rigidity. How, one might wonder, did the two major political parties reach this juncture, putting two arguably unfit personalities within reach of the nuclear codes?

Patrick J. Buchanan

... Yet, if Clinton means to engage on foreign policy, this is not a battle Trump should avoid. For the lady has an abysmal record on foreign policy and a report card replete with failures. As senator, Clinton voted to authorize President Bush to attack and invade a nation, Iraq, that had not attacked us and did not want war with us. Clinton calls it her biggest mistake, another way of saying that the most important vote she ever cast proved disastrous for her country, costing 4,500 U.S. dead and a trillion dollars. That invasion was the worst blunder in U.S. history and a contributing factor to the deepening disaster of the Middle East, from which, it appears, we will not soon be able to extricate ourselves.

Fox News - Video

Jesse Watters with Fox News went out and, as this video shows, did several man-on-the-street interviews with people about Memorial Day, and particularly about the wars that America has fought in the past (Runtime: 4:23 mins.) Regarding the Revolutionary War, Watters asked which country America defeated. Answers ranged from France and Russia to Germany. When asked who won the Civil War, one woman responded by saying that Asia was the victor. Another person thought that the Soviet Union won. Other answers included the French, the English, the Germans, the Russians, and the Japanese.

Philip Giraldi

... Israel’s government has astonishingly moved even farther to the right and, lest there be any confusion, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has declared that he is not interested in permitting the creation of a Palestinian state. He is, however, anticipating a promised call from President Hillary Clinton in January 2017 to arrange his visit to the White House as a first step in moving the U.S.-Israel relationship to a “whole new level.”
The recent firing of Israel’s respected Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon by Netanyahu and the naming of the astonishingly unqualified Avigdor Lieberman as his replacement has motivated a number of Israeli generals and senior politicians to condemn the direction the country is moving in, citing the surfacing of fascist tendencies in the latest political developments.

The Times of Israel

... The Jewish state is one of the few places in the world where it is illegal — with a potential jail term of two years — for Jewish couples to marry as they wish. This was confirmed on Wednesday when a proposed law amendment which would decriminalize marriages performed outside the auspices of the Israeli chief rabbinate was shot down in a 32-25 vote in the Knesset. Calling the existing law “scandalous,” Yesh Atid MK Aliza Lavie, who proposed the amendment, said it “opens a door so that tomorrow the state can jail anyone who won’t go to the mikveh [ritual bath], or who won’t have their sons undergo a brit milah [circumcision].” ... Although the prohibition on marriages performed outside of the rabbinate stems from Ottoman law, the criminalization of the act was only introduced two years ago as a last-minute addition to the Tzohar Law.

Jonathan Cook

In a familiar muddying of the waters, Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu has spent the past week talking up peace while fiercely criticising Friday’s summit in France – the only diplomatic initiative on the horizon ... Europe is increasingly fearful that an emboldened Israeli government may soon annex all or major parts of the West Bank, stymying any hope of creating even a severely truncated Palestinian state. The Paris conference is a sign of the mounting desperation in Europe to restrain Israel ... Still, Israel will try to ride out the French initiative until Mr Obama’s successor is installed next year. Then, Mr Netanyahu hopes, he can forget about the threat of two states once and for all.

Mark Weber

… Contrary to claims made by American and Israeli political leaders, US support for Israel has never been in America’s authentic national interest, nor has it been based on a commitment to democracy and freedom … In spite of its impressive military arsenal, and virtually unlimited support from the United States, Israel’s long-term prospects are not good … Although Israel is a formidable military power, it is an aberrant, crisis-prone state, artificially kept alive with outside support, and based on an unworkable ideology.

Haaretz (Israel) and JTA

U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice promised Israel on Monday that the new military aid agreement between the two nations that is currently being negotiated will constitute “the single largest military assistance package — with any country — in American history.” Addressing the American Jewish Committee Global Forum in Washington, Rice said the new decade-long aid package, which is expected to provide Israel somewhere between $37.5 billion and $40 billion over the life of the pact, will “constitute a significant increase in support,” providing funding to update Israel’s aircraft fleet and strengthen missile defenses. Hinting at the polarized views on Israeli policy among the U.S. presidential candidates, Rice said that “Israel’s security isn’t a Democratic interest or a Republican interest — it’s an enduring American interest.”

Reuters

A former CIA agent will be extradited to Italy for her involvement in the kidnapping of an Egyptian cleric under the U.S. "extraordinary rendition" program, after a last appeal to Portuguese authorities failed, she said on Wednesday. Sabrina De Sousa, a joint U.S.-Portuguese citizen, was one of 26 people convicted in absentia on charges of snatching Hassan Mustafa Osama Nasr from a street in Milan in 2003 and taking him to be questioned in Egypt. The case focused attention at the time on the treatment of suspects moved around the world for interrogation in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, and strained relations between Washington and Rome. De Sousa was arrested in Portugal in October at the request of Italian prosecutors, who want her to serve a six-year sentence.

The Guardian (Britain)

A former CIA officer who was accused of taking part in an illegal counter-terrorism programme said she is facing imminent extradition to Italy from Portugal after a high court in Lisbon rejected a last-minute legal appeal. Sabrina de Sousa, a 60-year-old former CIA officer who was convicted in absentia in Italy in 2009, faces a four-year prison term for her alleged role in the kidnapping of a radical Egyptian cleric ... The extradition of De Sousa and her possible imprisonment in Italy would mark the first time that any CIA officer connected to the highly classified and controversial Bush-era extraordinary rendition programme faced jail ... De Sousa, a vocal critic of the CIA and US government, has said she is a low-level and innocent scapegoat who has been sacrificed by the US government ...

PennLive / Patriot-News (Pennsylvania)

For years, Joseph Hirt has traveled the country telling of his escape from Auschwitz as a wildly emaciated "60-pound skeleton with skin" who slipped beneath an electric fence to freedom and later to a new life in America. The Adamstown, Penn., resident has spoken at schools and libraries, in roundtables and to newspaper reporters, time and time again. But during a recent presentation to a group in upstate New York, a skeptic emerged from within his usual audience of admirers. Now, that skeptic says his research shows that much of the 90-year-old's harrowing story is a lie ... Reid was instead struck by discrepancies in Hirt's version of events and in the evidence Hirt provided in support of his claims. Hirt's nephew has since acknowledged his story as a lie.

M. Weber – Institute for Historical Review

... In the film, two black veterans of the 761st "recalled" their role in liberating Dachau, ramming their tanks against the camp gates and encountering enemy machine gun fire from a burning barn. Also in the film, two elderly Jews who had been inmates in Buchenwald "recounted" their liberation by black GIs ... Actually, this "moving reunion" is a staged fraud ... No black troops participated in the liberation of either Buchenwald or Dachau ... In spite of the 1993 revelations, the US Holocaust Museum -- a federal government center operated by the taxpayer-funded United States Holocaust Memorial Council -- has continued to propagate this fraud.

Balkan Insight (Serbia)

Historian Bojan Dimitrijevic told the Belgrade-based Higher Court on Monday that the Nazi backed WWII-era puppet government led by Milan Nedic never physically murdered any Jews, as killings were only carried out by German occupation troops in the country at the time. “The Jewish question was not within the competence of Nedic’s government, but rather the German forces ...” ... Decades after his death, historians and the Serbian public remain split over his role during the Nazi occupation of the country. Some believe that he took the role of prime minister in a bid to ensure that he was in position to help people and prevent German reprisals in retaliation for an uprising in Serbia.

Video

American and British bombers repeatedly attacked Serbia during World War II. Although the raids were supposedly aimed at German military targets, the actual victims were overwhelmingly Serbian civilians. As this video shows, the Allied bombers destroyed homes, markets, churches and hospitals, and took many thousands of lives. (Runtime: 10:40 mins.) For example, British and American air forces struck Belgrade, the Serbian capital, on April 16 and 17, 1944. Some 600 US aircraft flying at high altitude carried out the “carpet bombing” raid, which resulted in an estimated 1,160 civilian casualties. (German military losses were 18.) Many of the Allied air attacks, particularly in May-June 1944, were meant to support operations by Communist “partisan” forces.

Associated Press

New government numbers offer a mixed snapshot of progress for the nation’s schoolchildren — with worrisome figures on how many students miss school, stubborn disparities on discipline, but encouraging strides in cutting the overall number of suspensions. The Education Department report found 6.5 million students nationwide were chronically absent in the 2013-14 school year. That’s more than one out of every ten students missing at least three full weeks of school ... The report also suggests sharp disparities between how black and white students are disciplined in school as well as the types of advanced coursework offered in high school to black and Latino children ... The rates were higher for high school students. More than three million were chronically absent — nearly one in five high school students.

The Times of Israel

The US House of Representatives voted overwhelmingly Tuesday evening to pass a resolution calling upon Germany to increase restitution support for Holocaust survivors in what one of the legislation’s sponsors described as a last chance to support the dwindling number of Nazi victims. The resolution, passed unanimously by a vote of 363-0 with strong support on both sides of the aisle, was sponsored by a bipartisan team of south Florida representatives – Republican Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Democrat Ted Deutch. Speaking on the House floor before the vote, Ros-Lehtinen said that around one-quarter of the slightly over 500,000 living Holocaust survivors in the world live in the US ... The House resolution was intended to emphasize Congress’s demand for additional aid ...

Der Spiegel (Germany) - 2007

… For more than half a century, the Jewish Claims Conference has been responsible for dealing with the German government over compensation claims made by victims of the Holocaust. In 1965, Germany signed a treaty agreeing to pay individual victims; survivors had to file their claims before 1969. Since then [to Dec. 2007], Germany has paid out over 63.2 billion euros -- including 1.5 billion euros in direct payments to the Israeli government.

G. Durocher - Occidental Observer

Former German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer makes this statement purely in passing ... as though it were unremarkable and indeed assumed by all-knowing individuals. He gave the interview in 1965, when he had been a few years in retirement and was indeed very old [age 89] ... He was the postwar Federal Republic’s first chancellor for 14 years and was responsible for “rehabilitating” the country in the eyes of Western governments. ... His key observation — “the power of the Jews even today, especially in America, should not be underestimated” — led him to advise reconciliation. Adenauer recognized that getting on good terms with Jews and in particular with the American Jewish community, was a sine qua non for Germany to be redeemed in the eyes of the Western powers and thus be allowed again into the “civilized world.”

RT News (Russia)

A racy ad campaign, started only nine months ago, has really hit the spot for Denmark's campaign for more baby-making. The country now expects booming birth rates this summer. According to research by Denmark’s Politiken newspaper, the summer months of June-August this year will produce 1,200 more Danes than last summer. In total, some 16,200 babies are due to be born. “I’ve never experienced a boom like this in my time as a midwife,” said Ann Fogsgaard, who’s been on the job 33 years ... It all started with cute appeals by Spies Travel to “give the world more babies” and “Do it for mom!” – which gave quite good data on how people tend to get groovier during a seaside vacation, as opposed to an alpine hike.

Middle East Media Research Institute / MEMRI (Washington, DC)

As the second Holocaust International Cartoon Contest concluded in Tehran, at the end of May 2016, the Resistart.ir website published the winners' names [and, shown here, a selection of noteworthy cartoons]. First prize went to the French cartoonist Zeon. Contest secretary Masoud Shojaei Tabtabaei said that Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei had phoned him to congratulate him on his "excellent work" with the contest.

Eric Margolis

America is falling apart. Anyone who travels in this great land knows it ... The American Society of Civil Engineers warns that crumbling roads, rusting bridges, decaying railroads and transit systems are costing the nation $129 billion each year, and that crumbling infrastructure adds $97 billion annually and caused travel delays of $28 billion annually ... Today, America’s infrastructure is backward, primitive, and humiliating for the self-proclaimed ‘greatest country on earth.’ Why is this? Because Americans and their government in Washington has chosen imperialism over taking care of home. While the US crumbles, it pours billions upon billions into foreign military misadventures.

The Washington Times

... The U.S. economy is no longer the most competitive and pro-business in the world, after holding the top spot for the previous three years, according to a comprehensive new survey. The Switzerland-based IMD World Competitiveness Center in its 2016 ranking puts the U.S. third behind China’s Hong Kong region and Switzerland ... The sheer size and scope of the American economy were no longer sufficient to keep it at the top of the closely-watched global ranking, Arturo Bris, director of the IMD center, said. “The common pattern among all of the countries in the top 20 is their focus on business-friendly regulation, physical and intangible infrastructure and inclusive institutions.” Rounding out the top ten competitive economies were Singapore, Sweden, Denmark, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway and Canada.

G. Greenwald, A. Fishman - The Intercept

One of the greatest free speech threats in the west is the growing, multi-nation campaign literally to outlaw advocacy of boycotting Israel ... Notably, all of this has been undertaken with barely a peep from those who styled themselves free speech crusaders when it came time to defend anti-Muslim cartoons. But now, New York’s Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo has significantly escalated this free speech attack on U.S. soil, aimed at U.S. citizens. The prince of the New York political dynasty yesterday issued an executive order directing all agencies under his control to terminate any and all business with companies or organizations that support a boycott of Israel. It ensures that citizens who hold and express a particular view are punished through the denial of benefits which other citizens enjoy: a classic free speech violation ...

EJP

The Anti-Defamation League (ADL), the European Jewish Congress and European Union of Jewish Students have announced the expansion for European Internet users of ADL’s Cyber-Safety Action Guide. This announcement follows an agreement reached earlier this week between leading Internet companies, including Facebook, Google, Twitter, and Microsoft, and the European Commission on a “Code of Conduct” to address online hate speech. “The Code of Conduct announced closely tracks ADL’s Best Practices for Responding to Cyberhate, originally released in 2014, following months of discussions and deliberations by an industry Working Group on Cyberhate convened by ADL,” said Jonathan A. Greenblatt, ADL CEO.

Bloomberg News

U.S. Internet giants Facebook Inc., Twitter Inc., Google and Microsoft Corp. pledged to tackle online hate speech in less than 24 hours as part of a joint commitment with the European Union to combat the use of social media by terrorists. Beyond national laws that criminalize hate speech, there is a need to ensure such activity by Internet users is “expeditiously reviewed by online intermediaries and social media platforms, upon receipt of a valid notification, in an appropriate time-frame,” the companies and the European Commission said in a joint statement on Tuesday. ... A French Jewish youth group, UEJF, sued Twitter, Facebook and Google in Paris this month over how they monitor hate speech on the web.

The Independent (Britain)

Former London Mayor Ken Livingstone has described his comments about Adolf Hitler supporting Zionism as “factual” and compared them “1+1=2”. Speaking at the Oxford Union on Wednesday, Mr Livingstone refused to apologise for his statements about the Nazi leader and blamed "embittered MPs" for branding him a Nazi apologist. He said: "I think this has been largely manufactured by people trying to undermine Jeremy Corbyn. If someone says something antisemitic they will be expelled but you can't expel someone for telling the truth." Mr Livingstone has been suspended from the Labour Party over his claim Hitler supported Zionism.

Eleanor Clift - Daily Beast

... Buchanan was talking about the evils of immigration long before Donald Trump rode the issue to the Republican nomination. In 1992 and 1996, the former Nixon speechwriter and conservative firebrand ran for president as a Republican, his signature anti-trade and immigration diatribes inflaming party divisions and contributing to the GOP’s loss of the White House. Unlike Trump, Buchanan was cast out of the party and treated as a fringe candidate with ideas unfit for polite company ... Trump’s emphasis on how China is ripping off America is straight from Buchanan’s playbook, and his books, The Great Betrayal and Death of the West ... The demographic change that Buchanan warned about has come to fruition in the age of Obama, adding urgency to Trump’s appeal to working class white America.

Daily Mail (Britain)

A six-mile perimeter could be created around an area of North London to help Orthodox Jews avoid restrictions on the Sabbath. Fishing wire would be suspended from tall poles to create the boundary for what would become a huge eruv, acting as an extension of the walls of a home which would give Jews greater freedom. But there are concerns the proposal to Camden Council by a group of synagogues could lead to ‘ghettoisation’ of the area, following similar fears raised in another application nearby in 2014 ... The eruv would be constructed with pairs of 18 foot (5.5 m) poles at 40 points around Camden, with each pair connected with a length of fishing wire ... This would join other eruvium that already exist in Britain, including an eleven-mile perimeter in North West London, which is the UK's largest, and another in Prestwich, Greater Manchester.

Breitbart News

The level of immigration — both legal and illegal — into the United States over the past two years has dwarfed previous levels and is now higher than it was prior to the 2007 recession, according to a new analysis of Census Bureau data. The report, released Wednesday by the Center for Immigration Studies, reveals that in just two years (2014 and 2015) 3.1 million immigrants settled in the U.S., or 39 percent more than the prior two years. “Several factors have likely contributed to the rebound, including cutbacks in enforcement, an improved economy, and the expansive nature of our legal immigration system (especially for long-term temporary visas such as guest workers and foreign students),” the report, authored by CIS Director of Research Steven Camarota, reads.

Haaretz (Israel)

Boxing great and cultural icon Muhammad Ali, who passed away on Friday aged 74, was known for his quick and darting technique in the ring ... Talking to reporters in Beirut, Lebanon, at the start of a tour of the Middle East, Ali said that “the United States is the stronghold of Zionism and imperialism.” ... In 1980, during a visit to India to promote a boycott of the Olympic Games in Moscow after the Russian invasion of Afghanistan, Ali maintained that Zionists “control” America and the world ... “Religion ain’t bad; it’s people who are bad," he said. "You know the entire power structure is Zionist. They control America; they control the world. They are really against the Islam religion. So whenever a Muslim does something wrong, they blame the religion.”

RT News (Russia)

The United States, Ukraine and Turkey top the nations that Russians see as most hostile to their motherland, with Belarus, Kazakhstan and China traditionally seen as friendliest, a recent poll has shown. According to the results of the research, conducted by independent pollster the Levada Center, reports that 72 percent of Russians identified the US as the country that is most hostile toward Russia. Ukraine was second with 48 percent, and Turkey came third with 29 percent (researchers allowed every respondent to name several countries in response to this question) ... When asked about their own negative sentiments towards foreign nations, 70 percent said that they disliked the US the most, 62 percent named the European Union, and 63 percent confessed to negative feelings toward Ukraine.

Patrick J. Buchanan

... While Barack Obama, Cameron and Angela Merkel are pulling for Britain to vote to remain in the EU, across Europe, transnationalism is in retreat, and tribalism is rising ... By enlisting in these parties of the right, what are the peoples of Europe recoiling from and rebelling against? Answer: The beau ideal of progressives — societies and nations that are multiracial, multiethnic, multicultural and multilingual. Across Europe, the tribalists are rejecting, in a word, diversity. And what are they seeking? God-and-country, blood-and-soil people, they want to live with their own kinfolk, their own kind ... If the West is to survive as the unique civilization it has been, its nations must reassume control of their destinies and control of their borders.

The New York Times

The God inherited over generations from Henry VIII’s day has long ceased to represent an exclusive franchise. For Christian believers, the most alarming news came in recent days in a report based on a British Social Attitudes survey, which concluded that, for the first time, the number of people in England and Wales identifying themselves as having no religious affiliation (49 percent) exceeded those who cleaved to Christianity (44 percent). And within that decline, the Anglican Church had lost the greatest share of adherents. (The Roman Catholic minority, the study said, fared better in maintaining its share of souls.) “A cultural shift is to blame,” the columnist and historian Tim Stanley wrote in The Daily Telegraph.

AFP

US forces on the ground in northern Syria are helping a major offensive against the Islamic State group in its stronghold of Raqa province, Kurdish-Arab fighters battling the jihadists say. Near the frontline north of the IS bastion of Raqa city, American commandos climbed onto a low rooftop carrying US-made anti-tank missiles. "These are US special operations forces and this is why you cannot follow them or take many pictures," said a fighter with the Syrian Democratic Forces, which announced on Tuesday an assault on the jihadists north of Raqa. Leaning on a partially destroyed home in the village of Fatisah recently seized from IS, SDF field commander Hawkar Kobane told AFP that "US forces are taking part in this operation" alongside his own troops.

Associated Press

Violent crimes – from homicides and rapes to robberies – have been on the rise in many major U.S. cities, yet experts can’t point to a single reason why, and the jump isn’t enough to suggest there’s a trend. Still, it is stumping law enforcement officials, who are seeking a way to combat the problem. “It’s being reported on at local levels, but in my view, it’s not getting the attention at the national level it deserves,” FBI Director James Comey said recently. “I don’t know what the answer is, but holy cow, do we have a problem.” Americans have grown accustomed to low crime rates since a peak in the 1990s. But law enforcement started seeing a spike last year that has continued unabated. What’s unusual, however, is that it’s not happening everywhere.

The Associated Press

Republicans and Democrats feel a massive disconnect with their political parties and helpless about the presidential election. That's according to a new poll by the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research ... The divisive primary season has fueled an overall sense of pessimism about the political process that underscores a widening chasm between political parties and the voters they claim to represent ... The survey exposes an extraordinary crisis of confidence in most major political institutions ... In general, only 15 percent of Americans report a great deal of confidence in the Democratic Party compared with just eight percent who say the same of the GOP. That's as only four percent say they have a great deal of confidence in Congress, 15 percent in the executive branch and 24 percent in the Supreme Court.

L. McCauley - Common Dreams

This year's presidential primary has left many voters feeling helpless and alienated from their political parties, according to a new poll, which found that Democrats and Republicans alike want to see major changes in the way presidential candidates are chosen. The survey, conducted by the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research and published Tuesday, reported that a full 90 percent of voters lack confidence in the country's political system, while 40 percent went so far as to say that the two-party structure is "seriously broken.” Seventy percent of voters, including equal proportions of Democrats and Republicans, said they feel frustrated about the 2016 presidential election, and 55 percent reported feeling "helpless.”

Patrick J. Buchanan

... And what is Scarborough Shoal? A cluster of rocks and reefs ... Beijing and Manila both claim Scarborough Shoal ... So, the fat is in the fire. And as the Chinese are adamant about their claims to the Spratly and Paracel Islands and virtually all the atolls, rocks and reefs in the South China Sea, and are reinforcing their claims by creating artificial islands and bases, the U.S. and China are headed for a collision ... What vital interest of ours is imperiled by who owns, or occupies, or militarizes Scarborough Shoal? If U.S. rights of passage in the South China Sea are not impeded by Chinese planes or ships, why make Hanoi’s quarrels and Manila’s quarrels with China our quarrels?

The Jerusalem Post (Israel)

Thirty-three percent of Americans and forty percent of Britons believe that boycotting Israel is “justified,” according to a poll conducted in the United Kingdom and the United States this month by the market research firm Ipsos. In the poll, which surveyed a representative sample of 1,100 adults in each country, participants were also asked whether they would support or oppose actions that lead to the boycotting of Israel. About one quarter (24 percent) of Americans and a third (33%) of British respondents said they would support such actions, while 76% of Americans and 67% of Britons said they would oppose them.

The New York Times

A bitter divide over the Middle East could threaten Democratic Party unity as representatives of Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont vowed to upend what they see as the party’s lopsided support of Israel ... It raises the prospect that one of the party’s most sensitive issues will be open to public debate ... It also laid bare a steady shift in the Democratic Party, whose members have been less willing to back Israel’s government than in years past. According to a Pew Research Center survey in April, self-described liberal Democrats were twice as likely to sympathize with Palestinians over Israel than they were only two years ago. Forty percent of liberals sympathized more with Palestinians, the most since 2001, while 33 percent sympathized more with Israel.

The Hill (Washington, DC)

Last month, in a landmark decision, the United Nations Human Rights Council decided to establish a database of all companies implicated in Israel’s illegal settlement enterprise in the occupied Palestinian West Bank, including the city of East Jerusalem. Finally, after years of toothless UN condemnations of settlements – which are a flagrant violation of international law and a major obstacle to justice and peace in the region - there will be an official UN list that names and exposes businesses that have for decades enabled and profited from Israel’s theft of Palestinian land and other human rights abuses ... Legally speaking, all UN-listed companies are to immediately stop their dealings with Israeli settlements, and member states are to ensure that they do so.

Religion News Service

The more mixed the Sunday morning pews are, the fewer people are likely to be in them. That’s the primary finding of a new study from Baylor University published in the current Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion. Researchers studied the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, where racial diversity doubled from 1993 to 2012, and found that, at the same time, churches with the greatest diversity growth also had the steepest declines in attendance ... The study also found: Rises in racial diversity were associated with declines in weekly attendance, especially in the 1990s ... Congregations in predominantly white communities were more likely to grow.

The Telegraph (Britain)

Babies show racial bias when picking playmates, a study suggests. Infants aged 15 months normally choose a playmate who is perceived as being fair, sharing toys equally for example, regardless of that person’s colour. But if a baby sees a person of the same race as them unfairly distribute toys in a way that benefits another of their race then the baby wants to be playmates with that person. Babies are also more likely to help those of their ethnicity, an effect known as in-group bias, where people favour those with the same characteristics. Researchers at the University of Washington in Seattle, noticed the phenomenon when the infants developed favourites during a previous experiment.

Associated Press

Few Americans have much confidence in the U.S. political system, the government in general, or in either political party. Most say they're interested in the 2016 presidential election, but they also feel frustrated, helpless and even angry with the way the election is going, a poll by the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research shows ... Just ten percent say they have a great deal of confidence in the political system overall, the AP-NORC poll finds, while 51 percent have only some confidence, and 38 percent say they have hardly any ... Only 13 percent of Americans say they think the two-party political system in the U.S. works fairly well, while 38 percent say it's seriously broken. An additional 49 percent say the system has real problems, but with some improvements it can still work.

Patrick J. Buchanan

... What explains the social disaster of white Middle America? ... Another factor in the crisis of middle and working class white men is the plunging percentage of those who are married. Where a wife and children give meaning to a man’s life, and to his labors, single white men are not only being left behind by the new economy, they are becoming alienated from society ... What has changed in our culture? Everything. The world has been turned upside-down for white children. In our schools the history books have been rewritten and old heroes blotted out, as their statues are taken down and their flags are put away ... White males, now down to 31 percent of the population, have become the only Americans against whom it is not only permissible, but commendable, to discriminate.

Ha’aretz (Israel)

Elliott Broidy, the American-Jewish venture capitalist and the deposed chairman of Tel Aviv-based Markstone Capital Partners, has been appointed deputy chairman of a fundraising organization for Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump's campaign. Broidy was removed as chairman of Markstone Capital after admitting to paying nearly $1 million in bribes to pension fund managers in New York State. He is still thought to have extensive political ties in Israel. Broidy's appointment as vice chairman of the Trump Victory Fund, a joint fundraising committee sponsored by Trump and the Republican National Committee, comes just weeks after Steven Mnuchin, a Jewish Hollywood film producer and former Goldman Sachs executive, was named Trump's national finance chairman.

The Times of Israel

The controversial nuclear agreement reached between Iran and major world powers last year compelled real estate mogul and presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump to run in the 2016 presidential elections, his son said Sunday. “I think, honestly, the Iran nuclear deal was one of the things that made him jump into the race,” Eric Trump said in an interview with the New York AM 970 radio station. “I think that was a game changer for him.” “That is when he finally said, ‘Kids, I am going to it. I am going to give this a real shot,’” he added. After years of negotiations, Iran and world powers, led by the United States, reached an agreement last year to freeze and inspect Iran’s rogue nuclear program in return for sanctions relief.

Eric Margolis

... Few people know that America’s renowned general George S. Patton and his rampaging 3rd Army, met their worst reverse during WWII in the fall of 1944 before Metz. Media glory-makers have forgotten this one. When the Allies invaded Normandy in June, 1944, they faced a weak Germany army that had been shattered by the Soviets on the Eastern Front. The Germans had almost no air cover, and barely any gasoline ... The gallant defense of Metz by far outnumbered and outgunned German forces delayed the US attack on Germany and covered the withdrawal from France of retreating German forces. Which reminds us of Churchill’s famous dictum, “you will never know war until you fight Germans.”

V. Shevchenko - BBC News

Ukraine has been trying to break free from its communist past, and the campaign is changing the face of whole cities. Zaporizhya is typical of eastern Ukraine in that it was full of communist monuments and street names. But new laws say they must be removed because they symbolise the country's repressive past. The campaign has triggered controversy, with critics saying that it is a crude assault on Ukraine's past.

Robert Row – Institute for Historical Review

... This [`fascist’ outlook] arose from the memory of comradeship in the trenches [of the First World War], uniting all classes in face of the machine-guns which struck down all irrespective of social class. It arose from his "socialist imperialism"; its dynamic thrust came from his synthesis of economic ideas; its method of government was inspired by Lloyd George's inner cabinet, a government of action which had won the war of 1914-18 and which Mosley would transform into "a machinery of government" to solve the problems left by that war.

Robert W. Merry - The National Interest

... How did the unthinkable become commonplace? Herewith a stab at identifying the five greatest reasons for the Trump emergence ... Everyone now knows how this bludgeon of right thinking [political correctness] has practically destroyed free speech and free thought on American campuses, as spineless administrators have stood by or joined in ... Political correctness has sought, with much success, to narrow the range of political discourse by labeling as illegitimate certain views and thoughts that, just a few years ago, were considered entirely acceptable ... Before Trump’s emergence on the political scene, no politician had demonstrated a credible seriousness about sealing the U.S. border.

Nicholas Kristof - The New York Times

... In a column a few weeks ago, I offered "a confession of liberal intolerance," criticizing my fellow progressives for promoting all kinds of diversity on campuses -- except ideological. I argued that universities risk becoming liberal echo chambers and hostile environments for conservatives, and especially for evangelical Christians. As I see it, we are hypocritical: We welcome people who don't look like us, as long as they think like us ... On campuses at this point, illiberalism is led by liberals ... Liberals claim to be champions of inclusiveness -- so why, in the academic turf that we control, aren't we ourselves more inclusive? If we are alert to bias in other domains, why don't we tackle our own liberal blind spot?

RT News

Figures like Jesus, Charles Darwin and Karl Marx would all be banned from British universities today due to the rise of counter-extremism legislation and US-style ‘safe spaces,’ an Oxford professor has claimed. Oxford Professor of European Studies Timothy Garton Ash told an audience at the Hay literary festival on Monday that pressure groups and the state are carrying out a double-pronged attack on free speech. As well as Marx, Darwin and Jesus, he warned that philosophers like Rousseau and Hegel would today be banned from campuses. Referring to the UK government-led Prevent scheme, intended to keep extremism out of educational institutions, Garton Ash warned that “securocrats in the Home Office” are imposing bans which would “prevent even non-violent extremists speaking on campus.”

Tehran Times (Iran)

French cartoonist Zeon, who was arrested for his anti-Zionist work in March 2015, and Iranian artist Arash Forughi have won first prizes at the Second International Holocaust Cartoons Contest in Tehran. Zeon was awarded a cash prize of $12,000 in the cartoon section, and Forughi received a cash prize of $7,000 in the caricature category during a ceremony held at the Art Bureau on Monday. Speaking at the ceremony, the secretary of the competition, Masud Shojaei-Tabatabai said, “One of the subjects we asked cartoonists to focus on was why the Western countries arrest any scholar who doubts the Holocaust while they put no limit on freedom of speech in other categories.”

The Washington Times

Former London mayor “Ken Livingstone has been sacked from his LBC radio show following his claim that Hitler supported Zionism,” the British newspaper The Independent reported ... The move comes nearly a month after he was suspended by the Labour Party for the remarks. “Let’s remember when Hitler won his election in 1932, his policy then was that Jews should be moved to Israel,” the veteran politician said in April. “He was supporting Zionism before he went mad and ended up killing six million Jews.”

Uri Avnery (Israel)

... The most direct connection between Nazis and Zionists came about very early on. When the Nazis came to power in Germany, in early 1933, American Jews declared a boycott of German goods. The Nazis responded with a day-long boycott of Jewish businesses in Germany. (I remember it, because my father kept me home that day.) At the same time, an official treaty was signed between Nazi Germany and the Zionist leadership. It was called "Transfer" (Ha'avara in Hebrew). Under it, wealthy German Jews were allowed to "transfer" part of their money to Palestine in the form of German goods. This broke the anti-German boycott, but was a big boost for the struggling Jewish economy in Palestine.

Mark Weber – Podcast

In spite of a basic hostility between Third Reich Germany and international Jewry, German National Socialists and Jewish Zionists shared similar views about ethnicity and nationhood, and worked together in the years 1933 through 1940-41 for what each group believed was in its own best national interest. The Hitler government vigorously promoted Zionism and Jewish emigration to Palestine. In collaborating with the Zionists for a mutually desirable and humane solution to a complex problem, Third Reich Germany was willing to make foreign exchange sacrifices, impair relations with Britain, and anger Arabs.