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October 19, 2018

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HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, OCTOBER 19, 2018 PAGE 3A By Ben Sales NEW YORK (JTA)--The organizers of a rally to sup- port pro-Israel students at Columbia University didn't want the Jewish Defense League to show up. And yet there they were, a few demonstrators wearing the extremist right-wing group's insignia, a clenched fist punching into a yellow Jewish star. The leader of the group's New York chapter, Karen Lichtbraun, marched up and down the small police barricade chatting up the other protesters. She said six of her members had come to demonstrate on behalf of the students. The Oct. 4 rally outside Co- lumbia's main gates in Upper Manhattan was organized by Students Supporting Israel, a campus group with chapters across the country. It called on the university administra- tion to do more to protect pro-Israel students, whom SSI says are harassed for their views. But most of the 40 or so demonstrators appeared not to be students. Many were older, mostly middle-aged, protesting on their behalf. The rally was posted on Facebook andwas the subject of a news release sent out by Miller Ink, a West Coast pub- lic relations firm that repre- sents some pro-Israel groups. In the past, SSI's Columbia chapter has received support from the Lawfare Project, a legal aid group that supports pro-Israel causes. One of the older protest- ers, a non-student who wore a black face mask and identified himself only as "Big Rob," said he attended the rally in order to encour- age pro-Israel students to aggressively confront their adversaries. "The way to help yourself is by demonstrating you're willing to take a risk, you're willing to take a loss to ex- tract a price," Big Rob said in a gruff voice. "Whatever it takes: kicked out of school, a fat lip, a bloody nose, a night in jail, whatever it is. They want to play it safe. That's why the tormentors are em- boldened." Columbia undergraduate Ofir Dayan, daughter of Is- rael's consul general in New York, Dani Dayan, told the New York Post that members of Students for Justice in Palestine have harassed her on campus. Dayan said she has been called a"murderer" and "terrorist" by mobs of Palestinian supporters, and that when her father spoke at the university in February, she was handed a flier calling him a "war criminal." SSI Columbia's president, senior Dalia Zahger, told JTA at the rally that she has had similar experiences. Zahger recalled an instance when she and three friends were confronted after an SSI meet- ing by a group of 50 protesters chanting at them. "They called me a ter- rorist in all kinds of dif- ferent situations," said the 25-year-old senior, who came to Columbia after serving in the Israeli army. "There were about 50 people there and they started yell- ing chants at us against Israel. They were there for a different protest, not con- nected to us. They saw us and decided to scream at us." Earlier this year, with the help of Lawfare, SSI filed a complaint with the univer- sity administration claiming harassment of pro-Israel stu- dents by anti-Zionist groups. The university, according to Zahger, has repeatedly dis- missed the complaint. Despite that, only a hand- ful of students showed up at the rally. Zahger and a few older attendees claimed that was because students were too scared to out themselves as pro-Israel, they were un- aware of how bad things were or people discount Jewish claims of discrimination. "If there would be any other minority treated the way Jewish students are be- ing treated here, you would have thousands of people here standing with them," said protester Rabbi Elchan- an Poupko, the president of Eitan, a nonprofit supporting American Israelis. "When it comes to Israel and Jews, unfortunately, people don't feel that the same safe spaces and support are required." But other large Jewish groups on campus also stayed away from the protest. The campus Hillel's leadership did not respond to requests for comments, and Aryeh, a large pro-Israel group at Columbia, declined to en- dorse the rally or encourage its members to attend. The group's president, Adele Stolovitz, was reluctant to Ben Sales Protesters outside the main gates of Columbia in New York City called on the university administration to do more to protect pro-Israel students, Oct. 4, 2018. comment on SSI, but told JTA that her group prefers to engage students in pro-Israel activism rather than con- fronting the administration. "Aryeh had no official part in that protest at all," she said. "We are not currently petitioning the administra- tion in any way. Most of our outreach is on a personal basis, and we like to engage the students more than the administration." Although SSI tends to be more provocative--in 2016, the group inflated a 12-foot Pinocchio doll on campus to call out what it said were lies being propagated by anti-Israel students--it was uncomfortable with the JDL presence at its rally. The JDL was founded in the late 1960s by Rabbi Meir Kahane, who advocated violence in response to anti-Semitism. The FBI labeled it a terror group. Today, the JDL, which has a small New York chapter, fre- quently protests on behalf of right-wing pro-Israel causes. Following the rally, SSI published a statement con- demning the JDL and clari- fying that it had asked its members to leave. It said there were three JDL mem- bers at the rally. "We apologize for any distress the three individuals caused," the statement said. "We did not intend on allow- ing such an extreme group of individuals to attend. Again, we condemn JDL and what they stand for on the stron- gest possible terms." But at the rally, Lichtbraun said she had no qualms about protesting on behalf of stu- dents-even if there weren't that many students there. "Most of the pro-Israel groups have not taken to the street, have not orga- nized a protest," she said. "They've stayed in their safe classroom." JERUSALEM (JTA)--Two Israelis were killed and an- other injured in a terror attack in a West Bank industrial area that employs thousands of Palestinian and Jewish workers. The attack in the Barkan Industrial Park factory took place shortly before 8 a.m. Sunday, at the beginning of the work week. The gunman, a 23-year-old Palestinian who remains at large, had been employed at the factory for several months and reportedly By United with Israel Israeli police were alerted to a house in Givat Ze'ev, a Jerusalem neighborhood, late Sunday night after a Molotov cocktail was found tied to a balloon was found in the backyard. Police sappers examined the balloon and transferred the findings for further inves- tigation, officers said. The police called on the public to exercise extreme caution with regards to suspi- cious objects such as kites and balloons, which may contain explosives or flammable materials. Givat Ze'ev is situated ad- knew the two deadvictims--a man and a woman from cen- tral Israel. Both had been tied up and shot at close range; they died of their injuries at the scene. A woman in her 50s was taken to a nearby Israeli hospital in serious but stable condition, according to Magen David Adorn. Kim Levengrond Yehe- zkel, 29, of Rosh Haayin, and Ziv Hajbi, a 35-year- old father of three from Rishon Lezion, were iden- jacent to several Arab neigh- borhoods. This concerning incident occurred just days after an incendiary terror balloon was discovered in the Ligad Technology Park in Modi'in in central Israel. It was the first time that a Palestinian airborne incendiary device has been detected this deep inside Israeli territory. A police source said that the incident was in line with several similar cases indicat- ing Palestinians in Judea and Samaria may be trying to mimic the attacks from Gaza by launching incendiary balloons into central Israeli cities. tiffed as the two people killed. The attack is reported to be the first of its kind in the Barkan Industrial Park. The gunman used an as- sault rifle and was caught on security cameras leaving the factory. He lived in the village of Shweika, near the West Bank city of Tulkarem, and had a permit to enter Barkan for work, but it is not known how he was able to bring the weapon into the industrial zone. He reportedly Over the past six months, balloons and kites carrying firebombs or explosives have been regularly launched from the Gaza Strip into Israel, sparking countless fires and causing extensive damage. The Palestinian arson ter- rorism campaign has so far decimated nearly 10,000 acres of forest and farm- land on the Israeli side of the border, causing millions of dollars in damage to the area. Environmental experts say it will take at least 15 years to rehabilitate the vegetation and wildlife that have been destroyed. JNS contributed to this report. left behind a suicide note with a friend. The Israel Defense Forces is searching for the attacker. "This is a serious terror at- tack," IDF spokesman Ronen Manlis said in a statement. "He may have had other mo- tives, but we unequivocally state that this is a terrorist attack, in light of other find- ings we have." Manlis said that special units have been brought in to help capture the shooter. He called the Barkan In- dustrial Zone, which is home to 160 factories, "an area of coexistence inwhich Palestin- ians work daily with a permit alongside Jews. We are exam- ining the events of the day, but it is clear to all of us that preserving this coexistence is part of the IDF's mission, andwe will continue to do so." Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the weekly Cabinet meeting on Sunday morning called the shootings a "severe terrorist attack." "The security forces are in pursuit of the reprehensible murderer," he said. "I am cer- tain that they will apprehend him and I am also certain that we will deal with him to the fullest extent of the law and quickly. President Reuven Rivlin in a statement said "This was not only an attack on innocent people going about their daily lives, it was also an attack on the possibility of Kim Levengrond Yehezkel and Zvi Hajbi Israelis and Palestinians co- existing peacefully. I call on the Palestinian leadership to condemn the attack and to use the forces at their disposal to capture the terroristand those who aided him." The Hamas terror organi- zation called the attack"a new chapter in our resistance in the West Bank." "The incident has proven that any attempts of the Pal- estinian Authority to normal- ize relations with the Zionist occupier are unsuccessful," it said in a statement. An Islamic Jihad spokes- man, Daoud Shehab, said the attack is a reply to "Israel's war crimes in Gaza, Jerusalem, the Bedouin village of Khan al-Ahmar and the damage Israel causes to the A1-Aqsa mosque. We call on our people to rise up against the settle- ments terror until the West Bank is freed from it." NATHALIE TOLEDANO REALTOR Owned And Operated By NRT LLC (407) 488-2763 CELL (407) 647-1211 EXT 3685 BUSINESS (407) 628-1210 FAX RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE 400 Park Avenue South, Suite 210 Winter Park, FL 32789 www.floridamoves.eom/nathalie.toledano