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June 14, 2013

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PAGE 14A HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, JUNE 14, 2013 An Israeli judge sparked an outcry during the hear- ing of a 19-year-old Israeli woman who was raped by four Palestinians when she was 13. The woman was petitioning the court for the rape to be considered "an act of terror" which would make her eligible for government compensation. "Some girls enjoy being raped," Judge Nissim Ye- shaya of the District Court in Tel Aviv said, according to Army Radio. The rape victim was not in the room for the hearing. Her attorney, Roni Aloni- Adovnik described the scene toArmy Radio. "In the midst of the passionate debate he (Judge Yeshaya) suddenly said aloud, in earshot of everyone preseht: 'There are some girls who enjoy being raped.' The room fell into silence .... And he didn't even get what he had just said. 'He didn't understand why everyone became silent all of a sudden." Israeli press reports said the plaintiff collapsed af- ter her lawyer told her about the judge's remarks and was hospitalized. Yeshaya said his remarks had been misconstrued. "This isn't serious," he said after the remarks became public. "They are trying to gain publicity off me. I do not believe a rape victim is not hurt or that rape is not a serious offense." Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the remark "unfortunate" and "unacceptable" and said he was withdrawing his support for the judge's appointment as the head of the Likud Party's Court. Women's groups circu- lated petitions calling for his immediate resignation. "It's outrageous--these people are supposed to deciding the fate of these women and they don't have the faintest idea of what it.means to be a victim of sexual assault." Miriam Schler. director of the Tel Aviv Sexual Assault Crisis Center told The Media Line. "It sheds light on the level of ignorance that exists in all of these different insti- tutions." She said that the Crisis Centers throughout Israel received more than 40,000 calls from women reporting sexual assault last year. Of those, fewer than 20 percent filed a claim. Of those who did file a claim more than 75 percent of the cases were .dismissed. "Women- don't trust the system," she said. "These incidents (the judge's re- marks) give them even less reason to trust it." Israeli MK Aliza Lavie said Judge Yeshaya must resign immediately. "A judge who holds such an opinion cannot sit in court even one more hour," she said. "I call on the Jus tice Minister to dismiss the judge immediately." The issue of rape in Israel gained prominence when former President Moshe Katzav was sentenced to seven years in prison for two counts of rape in 2011. He is currently in jail. Some feminist advocates said the Katzav case shows that Israel is changing. "Things have changed over the past 10 years," Elana Sztokman. the direc- tor of the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance told The Media Line. "In the Katzav case, several women came out publicly with tremen-- dous courage. Even in thi case of the judge, people are reacting to this and not tak- ing it sitting down." The judge's remarks ex- ploded on Facebook and Twitter, Sparking anger among women all over Israel. "Judge Nissim Yeshaya: Neanderthal is too good of a species to begin to describe what species you belong to! You, Judge Yeshaya, are a dis- grace and you have brought dishonor to the title judge? Isa Ben Rafael, the former foreign press liaison officer at the Government Press Office told The Media Line. "I hope they succeed in preventing you from ever entering a court room again. You sir, are lower than the whale Waste at the bottom of the ocean! Shame on you/" Busy , From page 1A the prevention of a nuclear Iran "vital to America's own security" and recommended close cooperation with Israel toward that end. Obama had wanted to name Rice secretary of state to replace Hillary Rodham Clinton. but she ran into opposition among Senate Republicans because of her role in presenting a version of the fatal attack last September on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya. that blamed the attack on spontaneous anger at a U.S.-made video that vili- fied Muslims. It was learned subsequently that extremists had planned the attack. Still. Rice has enjoyed warm relations with the pro- Israel community, including from conservatives who have lauded her defe nse of Israel at the United Nations. Last month, she was honored by the American Jewish Com- mittee with its Distinguished Public Service Award. saying in her acceptance speech that she regretted her mother was unable to attend. "She would have got a lot of nachas," Rice said. Power. Obama's desig- nated replacement for Rice. accrued much good will among Jewish groups in the 1990s for her work on genocide, which included research confirming previ- ous reporting that the United States could have done more during World War II to stop the Nazi killing machine. But Power subsequent- ly alienated many in the community when a video surfaced from 2002 in which she accepted overblown estimates of casualties of an Israeli raid in the West Bank. advocated for cuts in assistance to Israel and called for an intervention force to protec~ Palestinians, After joining the Obama team in 2009 as a member of the National Security Council--a post she left in February--she assuaged many concerns, first by join- ing Rice in taking the lead against the singling out of Israel at the United Nations. It was Power's call, keep the United States out of Durban II. a 2009 reprise of the 2001 conference on racism in South Africa that devolved into a festival of Israel bashing: Power also has earned kudos from some conser- vatives for being a leading voice inside the White House for intervention during the turmoil roiling the Middle East, advocating forcefully" for increased U.S. assistance to Syrian rebels. FLORIDA EWISH NEWS Approximately 22 hours per week, Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, ' Friday, from I - 5 p.m. Wednesday 11- 5 p.m. Responsibilities will include editing, writing, page layout, photography and some misc. clerical. Knowledge of the J Jewish community and computer experience helpful. Please send resume to : or call Jeff at 407-834-8787. Power From page 1A have to be a mammoth protec- tion force, not of the old, you know. Srebrenica kind or the Rwanda kind. but a meaning- ful military presence," said Power, who later retracted her comments in an interview with Haaretz. In a 2007 interview posted on the Harvard Kennedy School Of Government's web- site. Power said, "America's important historic relation- ship with Israel has often led foreign policy decision- makers to defer reflexively to Israeli security assessments, and to replicate Israeli tactics, which, as the war in Lebanon last summer demonstrated, can turn out to be counter- productive." Power has also criticized the New York Times for reporting that there was no massacre of Palestinians in Jenin in 2002, commenting in the 2003 book EthnicViolence and Justice, "I was struck by a matic tact required for the U.N. ambassador role. Klein said ZOA plans to scrutinize Power. publicly note her past statements about Israel, and speak with other Jewish groups about the issue--just like ZOA didwhen it felt Obama's nomination of Hagel for defense secretary warranted opposition. The Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC), another group that was vocal in its opposition of the Hagel nomination, also issued a warning about the Power appointment on Wednesday. "Samantha Power has a record of statements that are very troubling to Americans who support Israel," RJC Ex* ecutive Director Matt Brooks said in a statement. "We urge members of the U.S. Senate to question her closely about her past statements and writings." Sarah Stern, president of The Endowment for Middle East Truth, said in a state- ment, "Considering Power's openly hostile positions on headline that accompanied a Israel aswellas her deep seated news story on the publication of the Human Rights Watch report. The headline was, I believe: 'Human Rights Re- ports Finds Massacre Did Not Occur in Jenin.' The second paragraph said, 'Oh, but lots of war crimes did.' Why wouldn't they make the [Israeli] war crimes the headline andthe non-massacre the second paragraph?" ZOA's Klein told that the appointment of Power is a troubling development for the prospects of Israel at the U.N., a body whose resolu- tions already frequently con- demn the Jewish state. Klein added that Power's firing from 0bama's 2008 election campaign over calling Hillary Clinton"a monster" indicates that Power lacks the diplo- resentment for the United States, and her biases in favor of the Palestinians despite their continued incitement to hate and to kill Israelis, our one true democratic ally in the region, and on the Iranian nuclear program, thi 3 appointment shows support-- ers of Israel that the Obama Administration's worst in- stincts are coming to the fore in its second term. It's deeply distressing. We oppose her nomination in the strongest terms possible." The Anti-Defamation League (ADL), however, praised the Power appoint- ment, with Barry Curtiss- Lusher, ADL national chair, and Abraham Foxman, ADL national director, gaying in a statement, "We are pleased that President Obama has nominated a true champion of human rights who led the effort to make averting geno- cide and atrocities a core part of American policy to head the U.S. delegation at the United Nations." "As head of President Obama's multilateral affairs efforts. Samantha engaged in an all-hands-on-deck U.S. campaign against Palestinian unilateral efforts in the U.N. to circumvent peace nego- tiations. She experienced first-hand the hostility faced by Israel and the abuse of the U.N. bodies to promote anti-Israel bias. As someone who appreciates, to the core of her being, the meaning of international human rights mechanisms, Samantha is clear eyed and understands the injustice of their abuse to target Israel's legitimacy," Curtiss-Lusher and Foxman added. The ADL leaders' state- ment did not reference any of Power's past controversial comments on, Israel. Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, a well-known author and TV host who last November was a Republican candidate for the House of Representatives "in New Jersey, wrote in a 2011 op- ed recounting a conversation he had with Power that she "rejected utterly the notion she had any animus toward Israel." "She acknowledged that she had erred significantly in offering hypothetical com- ments that did not reflect how she felt," B teach wrote, regarding Power's 2002 com- ments in Berkeley. "She said that opponents of President Obama had unfairly taken her disorganized comments further and characterized them as 'invade Israel' talk."