Sunday, August 9th 2020   |

National

Biden intervened to keep ‘occupation’ out of Democratic platform

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Joe Biden personally intervened to keep the word “occupation” out of the official Democratic platform, according to a new report.

Foreign Policy reported Thursday that Biden intervened after pro-Israel groups appealed to him, citing three sources, including Jason Isaacson, the chief policy and political affairs officer at the American Jewish Committee.

“The question of whether to allow the text to refer to ‘occupation’ or use the phrase...

Israel may not top progressive agendas now, but tensions with the pro-Israel community will persist

By RON KAMPEAS

WASHINGTON (JTA) — The Israel issue isn’t necessarily toward the top of the progressive to-do lists at the moment, but that doesn’t mean elements of the movement are any less at odds with the pro-Israel community.

That was evident in an interview this week that the Democratic Socialists of America’s New York City co-chairwoman, Sumathy Kumar, gave with the news site Kings County Politics.

Here’s the passage...

Joe Lieberman’s son Matt, who’s a Senate candidate in Georgia, is under fire for novel NAACP says contains ‘racist tropes’

WASHINGTON (JTA) — The Georgia head of the NAACP called on Matt Lieberman, son of former Sen. Joe Lieberman and one of the candidates for a Senate seat in Georgia, to drop out of the race because of a novel the younger Lieberman wrote that contains “racist tropes.”

HuffPost on Friday wrote about Matt Lieberman’s 2018 self-published novel “Lucius.” One of the book’s characters, Benno, believes he once owned an...

Cori Bush, candidate who expressed support for BDS, defeats longtime congressman in Missouri Democratic primary

By RON KAMPEAS

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Cori Bush, a civil rights activist who has expressed support for the boycott Israel movement, defeated a longtime pro-Israel incumbent in a Democratic congressional primary in St. Louis.

Bush defeated Lacy Gray by 3 percentage points, 48.6% to 45.5% in the primary Tuesday. In a now-deleted page on her campaign website, first uncovered by Jewish Insider, Bush expressed support for the Boycott, Divestment and...

Jewish and Black historical cemeteries vandalized in Virginia with Nazi symbol

(JTA) — Two historic cemeteries in Virginia, one Jewish and one African-American, were vandalized with graffiti featuring “777,” shorthand for the triskele hate symbol.

The vandalism was discovered Monday at Richmond’s Evergreen Cemetery and at the Sir Moses Montefiore Cemetery in Henrico County on the border with Richmond, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported.

The triskele, or triskelion, looks like three interlocking sevens and was one of many ancient European symbols appropriated...

An activist says it is ‘electioneering’ for nonprofits to call candidates racist. Jewish groups say it’s routine.

By RON KAMPEAS

WASHINGTON (JTA) — A pro-Israel activist has filed a complaint with the Internal Revenue Service that, if successful, could severely restrict freedom of speech for non-governmental organizations.

David Abrams’ lawsuit alleges that the nonprofit New Israel Fund “electioneered” in violation of its tax-exempt status by supporting grantees in Israel who are vocal on political issues. Among other things, the lawsuit cites the NIF for supporting Israeli organizations...

Larry Johnson, former Kansas City Chiefs running back, tweets that Jews are involved in sex trafficking, pedophilia and more

(JTA) — Larry Johnson, a former running back who played seven seasons for the Kansas City Chiefs, tweeted multiple times to his more than 147,000 followers over the weekend that a Jewish “cabal” is involved in “Human Trafficking, Sex Trafficking, Pedophilia, Ritualistic Child Torture, Perversion, Human Sacrifice/Murder.” And on Monday, he showed no signs of apologizing.

Johnson framed one of those tweets as a response to Max Kellerman, the Jewish...

Oregon’s attorney general, Ellen Rosenblum, says she won’t stand for authoritarianism in Portland

By BEN SALES

(JTA) — When reports emerged two weeks ago about federal agents seizing protesters from the streets of Portland and putting them in unmarked vans, Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum sued to get federal officers off the street.

A judge rejected Rosenblum’s request for a preliminary restraining order against the agents last week. But the lawsuit is ongoing, as is a criminal investigation Rosenblum opened into federal agents...

‘Was she talking about me?’ Nick Cannon ends July by reviewing Bari Weiss’ ‘How to Fight Anti-Semitism’

By PHILISSA CRAMER

Nick Cannon and Bari Weiss exploded into the news within a day of each other this month. So perhaps it is only fitting that the entertainer, who found himself in hot water after making anti-Semitic comments on his podcast, ended the month by reviewing the former New York Times writer’s 2019 book, “How to Fight Anti-Semitism.”

Cannon apologized after his remarks came to light and promised to...

Seattle’s only freestanding, certified kosher restaurant closes amid pandemic pressure

(JTA) — If you keep kosher in Seattle — whose metro area is home to more than 60,000 Jews — you now have to head to the suburbs for a restaurant meal you can eat.

The city’s only freestanding, certified kosher restaurant, Bamboo Garden, is serving its last meals today. The vegetarian restaurant became kosher nearly three decades ago after local Jews contributed expertise and money to allow it to...