New Year, New Beginning

On Tisha b’Av, we recount Jewish tragedies and how they repeat and echo throughout our history. Rosh Hashanah calls upon us to turn and return. We turn by recounting our shortcomings this year and promise to return to our genuine selves as Jews. The forty-nine days between these holidays require us to turn and return, to remember and act.

The Torah tells us we are required to act — for those of us in the diaspora and those of us in the State of Israel. In Parsha Matot (Numbers 32), the tribes of Rubin and Gad and half of Manasseh ask Moses if they can stay in the diaspora to prosper in its fertile fields. Moses replies, “yes,” as long as they agree to serve as the vanguard to fight for the promised land. We learn from this that we in the diaspora need to lead the fight for the Jewish people. And Pirkei Avot tells us, “If I am not for myself, who will be for me?”.

What does it mean to fight for ourselves? We American Jews have been shunned for most of our people’s time in America. Henry Ford promoted virulent antisemitism, including publishing the Protocols of the Elders of Zion – starting before 1920. Father Coughlin blamed Jews for the Nazi violence and America’s economic problems. They both exploited the most popular media of their times, print and radio.

Only for a short time following WWII did overt Jew hatred decline in the US. But it was never extinguished. Its embers ignited and spread unabated. Today Jew hatred is freely expressed by the left and the right in mosques and churches. Jew hatred infects college campuses, government offices, and even grade schools in the training of its teachers. Jew haters once again exploit the most popular media to spread hatred.

Who will be for me? A growing number believe mainstream Jewish organizations are no longer effective in fighting Jew-hatred. Their old tactics, working within the system or hiding, are now unproductive. Fortunately, new organizations willing to fight the lies in the public arena emerged. For example, writes, “Jew-haters have controlled our narrative and our history, trying to erase our historical and religious connections to our ancestral homeland. On college campuses, denying our indigenous connection to our homeland has become a litmus test for being able to participate in classes and in activities. This is what we need to change.”

What does it mean to fight for the promised land? We need first understand that after the Arab nations lost their military wars against Israel, they followed the Kremlin’s playbook of disinformation and instituted a propaganda war. Over the last five decades, their long-game propaganda war proved successful.

It works like this. As Rogers and Hammerstein note, you’ve got to be taught to hate and fear. Arab schools, including UN schools, paid for by our tax dollars, groom kids to hate and kill Jews. Arab media and mosques throughout the Middle East teach Jew hatred. So does Palestinian TV for kids. The world knows and mostly ignores this. Many fall for their lies. Why? Because Israel-haters laid the groundwork decades ago.

For example, Qatar and other Arab states infuse Jew hatred into higher education. They endowed chairs at major Western universities to advance their narrative that Jews and the Jewish state are evil. Graduates from these schools now occupy key positions in the media, industry, government, and universities. This created Generation Jihad. On many US campuses, hooligans shout down truthtellers and disrupt civil discussion. Student organizations and some professors ostracize and terrorize Jewish students who refuse to sign Jew hatred pledges.

What can we do? First, insist that our congregation publicly express our outrage on issues about Jew-hatred to our school boards, local officials, and the newspaper.

Second, join the Beth Ami Israel Committee. Our committee has linked hands with similar committees across the Bay area, and we even co-sponsor national webinars. Our website, http://IsraelUpdate.INFO, highlights upcoming talks and links to free videos to help us all learn from the comfort of our homes. Join us by emailing me at EliCohen@IsraelUpdate.INFO.

New Opportunities to learn are added very frequently. Get the most up-to-date list at HTTP://IsraelUpdate.INFO

To join the Israel Committee, Sign Up at

Israeli Politics for Dummies: How to make sense of everything as Israel heads to its 4th election

Aug 9, 2022 10 AM

Aharon Pulver’s work is to advocate on behalf of the protection of the Jewish, Zionist and democratic character of the State of Israel. His involvement in these crucial issues and contact with those who are on the frontlines fighting for these ideals gives him the experience and insight to evaluate the political situation confronting Israel, especially now as the country heads to another election this Fall.
Founded in 2007 and led by Aharon, the Israel Independence Fund plays a unique role in helping Israel to realize its continuing vision as a strong, secure and uniquely Jewish State devoted to the welfare and future of our People, and to the values of Zionism and democracy. Aharon is the Executive Director of the Israel Independence Fund (IIF). He has lived in Israel for 40 years, a time span that has provided him with the proximity, contacts, connections and understanding necessary to spearhead the IIF’s mission. The mission is to work with NGOs that are tackling some of Israel’s most pressing issues and assist individuals who are tackling some of the most important causes in Israel today.

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Israel: A Leader For Human Rights At The UN

August 23 5 pm

A conversation with Or Shaked, Adviser for Human Rights at the Israeli Mission to the UN

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Russia’s “Denazification” of Ukraine:
The Weaponization of Antisemitism in Contemporary Hybrid Conflict

August 28, 2022 9 am

Sam Sokol, author of the book Putin’s Hybrid War and the Jews: Antisemitism, Propaganda, and the Displacement of Ukrainian Jewry.

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Myths and Realities about Israel’s Establishment:
Their Relevance for Discussions of Contemporary Antisemitism

September 4, 2022 9 am

Jeffrey Herf

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Does Ethnic Studies Have a Jewish Problem?

September 8 4:30 pm

Panelists with American Jewish Committee, The Deborah Project, Alliance for Constructive Ethnic Studies, and CAMERA

Ethnic Studies is becoming a mandatory subject in many US states, a requirement for graduating from high school, yet it has been shown to be antisemitic, and has led to a serious confrontation between the Jewish community and educators and politicians in California. What are the implications for the Jewish community, especially when Ethnic studies does not recognize Jews as an ethnicity?



“Night Without End”:
New Scholarship on the Holocaust in Poland

September 18, 2022 9 am

Jan Grabowski

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Semites, Anti-Semites, and Bernard Lewis:
The Life and Afterlife of a Seminal Book

October 2, 2022 9 am

Martin Kramer

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“Apartheid,” and “Ethnic Cleansing”:
The Trifecta Libel Against Israel

October 16, 2022 9 am

Thane Rosenbaum “Occupation,”

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The Wayward Healer:
Iatrogenic Antisemitism and the Perils of Intervention

October 23, 2022 9 am

Kenneth L. Marcus

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Making Peace with the Jews?
Contemporary Islamic Arguments for and against Normalization

October 30, 2022 9 am

Ofir Winter

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Pandemics, Hate Crimes and Riots:
Media Coverage of Antisemitism Since 2020

November 6. 2022 9 am

Ben Cohen

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The Function of Antisemitism in Queer-Feminist Discourse

November 13. 2022 9 am

Franziska Haug

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Judeophobia and “Islamophobia” in Today’s France:
Symbolism, Doxa, and Reality More

December 4, 2022 9 am

Yana Grinshpun

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Prior Talks organized by our
Sonoma County Israel Committee

  1. Cartoons and Zionism talk by Yaakov Kirschen
  2. Understanding Zionism  Charlotte Korchak
  3. Challenges faced by non-orthodox Jewry in Israel Rabbi Andrew Sacks
  4. Antisemitism for Dummies Naya Lekht
  5. Black South African stands with Jews against antisemitism Olga Meshoe Washington
  6. Hamas’s war on Israel. Dr. Paul Liptz

Jewish Identity

  1. Karin Stögner: Antisemitism, Israel Denial, and Gender – A Critique of Certain Intersectionalities
  2. Dr. Sheree Trotter and Dr. Saba Soomekh Jewish Indigeneity and The Land of Israel
  3. Yossi Klein Halevi Exploring Zionism and Anti-Zionism .
  4. Tammi Rossman-Benjamin: Denying Jewish Self-Definition: The Latest Trend in Campus Antisemitism in America and What Can Be Done About It?
  5. Rabbi Elliot Cosgrove.The future of American Jewry.
  6. Yossi Klein Halevi, Chloe Valdary, and Blake Flayton The future of Zionism and the Jewish relationship with other communities.
  7. Rabbi Ammiel Hirsh The Inseparability of Zionism and Judaism June 13 9 am
  8. Reimagining a gap year program in Israel Natan Sharansky, Gill Troy, Bret Stephens
  9. Dreams for Living Jews.” Dara Horn and Bret Stephens

Israel Today

  1. Bassam Eid, Palestinian Arab Human Rights Activist, on the politics inside Gaza and the Disputed Territories,
  2. Life in Israel Today – Three Perspectives Life in Israel Today—Three perspectives from a Jewish Israeli, an Arab Israeli, and a Christian Israeli Click here for Register at ^pinfo on the speakers.
  3. Matti Friedman Stoking Hate: How Israel is Covered in the Media
  4. Yossi Klein Halevi, Khaled Abu Toameh, Pastor Dumisani Washington The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
  5. HaTikvah: The Hope and its Discontents  Professor Edwin Seroussi
  6. Understanding Hezbollah Dr. Matthew Levitt and David Daoud
  7. The Entertainment World’s Tricky Relationship with Israel
  8. Eight Tips for Reading About Israel Matti Friedman
  9. The outward narrative of conflict and the more cohesive day-to-day reality on the ground in Jerusalem Matti Friedman
  10. How Not to Think About the Conflict (audio) Matti Friedman

Einat Wilf

  1. The Essence of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict and the Path to Lasting Peace
  2. Western Anti-Zionism and Arab Zionism
  3. The War of Return: Exploring UNRWA and the Right of Return
  4. The dangers of mapping our own analogies onto Israelis and Palestinians 


  1. Alyza D. Lewin   “Responses and Solutions to Jew Hatred on Campus”
  2. Aleksandra Gliszczynska-Grabias: Do Human Rights Still Apply to the Jewish People? On Weakening the Human Rights Law Protection against Antisemitism
  3. Hatred Out of Control: Solutions and Challenges, featuring Anita Bromberg, President of CAEF, Leo Adler, criminal lawyer and Julius Grey, human rights lawyer, moderated by Christine Williams,
  4. David Bedein, Director, The Center for Near East Policy Research; Dr. Arnon Groiss, Associate, The Center for Near East Policy Research; and Brooke Goldstein, Executive Director, the Lawfare Project, and Founder, End Jew Hatred. “UNRWA Incites Violence Against Jews
  5. Prof. Eugene Kontorovich. Unpacking Israel and International Law
  6. Whose Land? History and Current Situation.
  7. Using Legal Tools to Combat Campus Antisemitism
  8. Ethnic Studies and Antisemitism Webinar J Lori Lowenthal Marcus Legal Director @The Deborah
  9. Conversations on Zionism: Reclaiming the Narrative: Stand Up and Fight Back
  10. Reclaiming Israel’s Legal Rights After the Mandate for Palestine Col (Res.) Maurice Hirsch
  11. Mandate for Palestine was adopted by the Council of the League of Nations (the forerunner of today’s United Nations) in London on 24 July 1922.


Antisemitism: Demonization, Double Standards, Delegitimization

  1. Rusi Jaspal : The Changing Face of Antisemitism: Insights from Social Psychology
  2. Rabbi David Wolpe: Why Antisemitism Makes ‘Sense’: Reflections on the Psychology of the Antisemite
  3. Gerald Steinberg: NGOs, Antisemitism, and the IHRA Working Definition
  4. Miriam F. Elman: Left Antisemitism in the United States: How Jewish Groups Give Cover to the anti-Zionist Movement
  5. Sina Arnold : Antisemitism and the Contemporary American Left
  6. Ambassador Danny Ayalon and Brigadier General (res.) Amir Avivi  How is the war in Ukraine impacting Middle East countries? Antisemitism at the University of Toronto
  7. Hillel Neuer, Executive Director of UN Watch A Nation That Dwells Alone: The Demonization of Israel at the U.N.”
  8. Anne Herzberg and Josh Kern : The Apartheid Calumny: Antisemitism and the Instrumentalization of International Law
  9. Jonathan Greenblatt, It COULD Happen Here. Why America Is Tipping from Hate to the Unthinkableand How We Can Stop It ADL.
  10. Aaron Breitbar The Anti-Jewish campaign of Louis Farrakhan
  11. The Truth About Jews and The Slave Trade
  12. Farrakhan In His Own Words
    also see
  13. The Jews Cannot Defeat Me: The Antisemitic Crusade of Louis Farrakhan
  14. Dan Diker BDS Unmasked: Radical Roots, Extremist EndsDeconstructing Apartheid Attacks Against Israel
  15. The Nazi Roots of Arab Antisemitism
  16. The Soviet Origins of Palestinian Antisemitism
  17. The UN’s Newest Assault on Israel
  18. Hate in the US: Unmasking the Antisemitism of CAIR and Other Muslim Brotherhood Offshoots
  19. Fighting the BDS War in the Entertainment Industry Lana Melman
  20. Fighting Hate From Home: The Clear and Present Danger of Conspiracy Theories  ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt and Jessica Reaves, the Editorial Director of ADL’s Center on Extremism
  21. Amnesty International’s Israel Problem – and Mine Susie Linfield & Bret Stephens
  22. Ethnic Studies and Antisemitism Webinar J Lori Lowenthal Marcus Legal Director @The Deborah
  23. The Campus War Against Israel & Jews Richard L. Cravatts
  24. BDS’s sinister Mapping Project, which collects the names and addresses of Massachusetts Jewish groups, calling on followers to use the addresses to “dismantle” and “disrupt” such institutions  Jeff Jacoby, Andrea Levin, Ricki Hollander
  25. The role of critical race theory, and the implications for Jews and antisemitism Pamela Paresky
  26. How Social Media Contributes to Extremism and Antisemitism Richard Green (Clarion Project)



  1. The Call to Stop the Iran Deal from Those Who Know the Regime Best
  2. FDR, the Media & the Holocaust: What Did They Know and When Did They Know It?
  3. The Flawed Logic Behind the JCPOA
  4. Biden’s Iran Deal: An Assessment
  5. What on Earth is Putin Thinking?
  6. The Russian Invasion of Ukraine
  7. The Track Record of the Iranian Regime
  8. Current Challenges to US Leadership
  9. Erdogan’s Rapprochement With Israel and the Jewish People
  10. On Our Doorstep: Iran and Hezbollah’s Latin American Networks
  11. Selling Out: The United States, Israel and an Iranian Nuclear Bomb
  12. US National Security & Energy Policy Vis-a-Vis the Middle East and North Africa
  13. Lebanon: The Iranian State Within a State
  14. The Iranian Nuclear Showdown
  15. US-Saudi Diplomacy Under President Biden
  16. America’s International Credibility Post-Afghanistan
  17. Military Challenges for the US and Israel in the Middle East
  18. The Israeli-Arab Insurrection Within Israel’s Borders
  19. Rising Tensions in Gaza
  20. The $400 Billion China-Iran Agreement
  21. What Britain can learn from Israel (Andrew Roberts) Andrew Roberts
    article in SAPIR
  22. Amnesty International’s Israel Problem — and Mine Susie Linfield
    video     article in SAPIR
  23. Caroline B. Glick EMET – An Expert Perspective From Israel on Global Affairs and Changing Geopolitical Alliances
  24. Omar Al Busaidy, Israel-UAE Peace Agreement (see Register at ^pat
  25. Israel Surrounded by Chaos: Lebanon, Syria, and Iran   Tony Badran,
  26. The Moral and Strategic Failure in Ignoring  Protests in Iran
  27. Biden and Iran Deal
  28. The Tectonic Shift on Israel’s Northern Border Sarit Zehavi
  29. Status Update: Biden and the Iran Deal Behnam Ben Taleblu
  30. President Biden’s Middle East Trip
  31. The View From Abu Dhabi Hussein Aboubakr Mansou
  32. The Ukraine and Russia: A Troubled History Dr. Christoph Gassenschmidt
  33. League of Nations Mandate Centenary Professor Steven Zipperstein, Provides an important understanding of Israel and international law.
  34. Why We Insist on Getting it Wrong About the Muslim World
  35. What will stop the Islamic Republic of Iran Reuel Marc Gerecht
  36. The IRGC’s Expanding Presence in Latin America Dr. Emanuele Ottolenghi
  37. The perils of looking at the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through a purely Western lens Einat Wilf, Leah Soibel of Fuente Latina, and Rabbi Mike Uram
  38. The power and limits of diplomacy, and new opportunities for Israel in the Middle East. Ambassador Gold


Israeli Politics

  1. Jerusalem’s View of the Vienna Nuclear Talks
  2. Israel’s Stance on Nuclear Iran & A New Approach to the Palestinian Issue
  3. Gaza Conflict 2021: Hamas, Israel and Eleven Days of War
  4. Understanding the Labyrinth of the Israel Electoral Process
  5. Israel’s Northern Border Heats Up
  6. Assessing the Strength of the Abraham Accords Today
  7. Introducing a Great American Hero: The Man Who Leaked the Iran Deal
  8. Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine & Israel’s Perspective on Iran
  9. Is Israel on a Collision Course With the Biden Administration?
  10. The Symbolism of Palestinian Terror
  11. The Afghanistan Withdrawal Vis-a-Vis Hezbollah on Israel’s Northern Border
  12. Examining Just How UNRWA Operates
  13. Examining the New Unity Government in Israel
  14. Israel’s Internal Conflicts:  Many Sides & Parties Dr. Mordechai Kedar, Israeli scholar of Arab language & culture
  15.  Zeev Jabotinsky Memorial and Tribute to the Great Zionist Leader Rabbi Stav

Jewish Politics

  1. Jewish leaders have betrayed, failed our community Charles Jacobs and Avi Goldwasser on Caroline Glick’s Mideast News Hour

Fighting Antisemitism: Tactics

  1. Holly Huffnagle (American Jewish Committee)  “What Works? Successful Interventions to Counter Antisemitism”
  2. James Sinkinson, President, Facts and Logic About the Middle East Winning the Fight Against Antisemites
  3. Ilan Sinelnikov Introducing Palestinian Apartheid Week Thursday

Problems for Jews on Campus / in School

  1. Blake Flayton, Kylie Unell, and Rabbi Zuckerman So you Want to be a Zionist?
  2. Using Legal Tools to Combat Campus Antisemitism
  3. Tammi Rossman-Benjamin: Denying Jewish Self-Definition: The Latest Trend in Campus Antisemitism in America and What Can Be Done About It?
  4. The campus war against Israel, Dr. Richard Cravatts
  5. Anti-Zionism in the academy and what we can do to fight back Rachel Fish
  6. Ethnic Studies and Antisemitism Webinar J Lori Lowenthal Marcus Legal Director @The Deborah
  7. End Jew Hatred: Wish you weren’t here, Roger Waters co-sponsored by the Sonoma County Israel Committee
  8. Advice to a Jewish Freshman.” Bret Stephens interviews Howard Jacobson
  9. The role of critical race theory, and the implications for Jews and antisemitism Pamela Paresky


  1. Nazi’s Granddaughter: The Search for the Truth  Sylvia Foti
  2. Monika Schwarz-Friesel on the 77th anniversary of the liberation of Mauthausen (written speech, not recorded)
  3. Remembering and Dismembering the Holocaust:  Implications for Today Prof. Alvin H. Rosenfeld
  4. Matti Friedman: “Who by Fire: Leonard Cohen in the Sinai”

Disinformation about Israel

  1. Dr. Moran Yarchi Fighting Over the Image: The ‘Image War’ as a Front in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict Email for link
  2. Industry of Lies: Media, Academia and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict –  Ben-Dror Yemini author of the book  Industry of Lies: Media, Academia, and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.

 * Not yet on video *

  1. Testimonies of the Farhud On 1 June 1941 a pogrom, known as the Farhud, broke out in Baghdad.
  2. Zionist Leader to Zionist Leader: A Conversation with Gusti Yehoshua Braverman
  3. Confronting Legal Challenges by SJP and Other Hate Groups: Strategic and Tactical Litigation Decisions at Public and Private Universities Aaron Eitan Meyer
  4.  A conversation with US Antisemitism Special Envoy Amb. Deborah Lipstadt
  5. The Jamaican Jewish Story Since 1656
  6. he Forgotten Exodus: Leaving Iraq

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