Tag Archives: UN

Call for the Immediate Resignation of Rutgers President Barchi

In an article co-authored by CAMERA Fellow Miriam Waghalter and Austin Altman, president and board member of CAMERA-supported group Scarlet Knights for Israel, the two outlined the immorality of Rutgers continuing to employ Rutgers professors Michael Chikindas and Mazen Adi.

Jasbir Puar, who has a history of anti-Semitism, including using blood libel to demonize Israel, recently made headlines again this fall. Her book, “The Right to Maim: Debility, Capacity, Disability” which was released this month, alleges that the IDF intentionally shoots Palestinians to harm them and not kill them, so that they will suffer as much as possible.

But Chikindas and Adi were only recently exposed as anti-Semites. Professor Chikindas shared anti-Semitic images on his Facebook profile, which as International Campus Director Aviva Slomich described, depicted scheming, controlling and evil Jews, evoking Der Stürmer-style imagery which is shared widely by hate and extremist groups on social media. 

Chikindas’s posts reminded many of Oberlin College’s Joy Karega, who shared content which invoked similar anti-Semitic tropes, just last year.

Just days after Campus Coordinator Ben Suster visited Rutgers to provide students with moral and practical support, students were faced with another bomb of troubling news: it was discovered that an additional professor on their campus held anti-Semitic views.

One of the Facebook posts from Professor Chikindas’s profile.

Since 2015, former Assad spokesman Mazen Adi has been lecturing in the political science department at Rutgers University. Working for the Assad regime, Adi repeatedly expressed support for the Syrian dictator’s war crimes during the Syrian civil war. Beyond defending a genocidal regime, Adi has also spewed antisemitic libel at the UN. In 2012, he alleged to the Security Council that “international gangs led by some Israeli religious figures are now trafficking children’s organs.”

From these scary details, it’s obvious that continuing to employ Adi and Chikindas is fundamentally wrong and harmful to students.

124th Plenary Meeting of the General Assembly 66th session: Prevention of armed conflict: draft resolution (A/66/L.57)

Yet, despite the tireless work of the Jewish community and its allies, including that of CAMERA students Miriam and Austin, President Robert Barchi has turned a blind eye to the Jewish community, defending the employment of all three professors. Barchi has shockingly gone so far as to question The Algemeiner, the Jewish newspaper that has provided significant coverage on the disturbing sentiments of both faculty members.

At a town hall meeting sponsored by the Rutgers student government last Thursday, President Barchi addressed the ongoing controversies surrounding Chikindas, Puar, and Adi, noting that “the one thing that is common to all of these is that they were all brought forward by The Algemeiner.”

Responding to President Barchi, Slomich made the following statement:

“After Oberlin College President Krislov wrongfully defended Professor Joy Karega after she shared anti-Semitic posts on social media last year, he appropriately stepped down.

Rutgers University President Barchi has repeatedly defended anti-semitism similar to those of Karega’s by three of his own faculty members. Not only has Professor Barchi defended these shocking actions, which targets a significant portion of Rutgers students, he also has expressed anti-Semitic rhetoric of his own, making disparaging remarks about The Algemeiner, the Jewish newspaper which has provided extensive coverage of these anti-Semitic incidents.

President Barchi’s continual defense of these anti-Semitic faculty members, in addition to his own apparent prejudice, leave no other option other than Barchi stepping down immediately to allow Rutgers students the justice and safety they deserve.”

To sign the petition created by Rutgers students for action against Professor Chikindas, click here.

To sign the petition created by UN Watch for action against Professor Adi, click here.

Contributed by Lia Lands, Campus Communications for CAMERA.

New UN Secretary General, Israel Work to Turn the Page

As blossoming intellectuals at ASU, it’s important for us to have a critical eye of large institutions such as the federal government, multinational businesses and even the United Nations. The UN’s purpose appears altruistic at first glance. However, upon further examination of its actions over the last decade, the UN has focused too much of its efforts on attacking Israel both in speeches and through resolutions while it fumbles with the Arab-Israeli conflict and other worldwide crises.

With an aim to turn the page and serve as a messenger of peace, António Guterres became the ninth Secretary-General of the United Nations last January. He began the process of working to resolve the Arab-Israeli conflict on his first visit to Israel and the Gaza Strip in late August.

Guterres’ itinerary in Israel included meetings and public remarks with Israeli leaders, touring an Israeli innovation showcase of humanitarian enterprises and a speech on the dangers of modern Anti-Semitism at the Yad Vashem Museum.

Guterres with Netanyahu during a press briefing at his office.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomed Guterres’ visit saying,

“You have clearly demonstrated the desire since you have taken office to turn a new page in the relations between Israel and the UN. This is something I want too, and I look forward to working with you towards that joint mission.”

In the background of General-Secretary Guterres’ mission is the strained relationship between the United Nations and Israel due to the UN’s constant attacks against the democratic nation.

According to the UN Watch, “From 2012 through 2015, the United Nations General Assembly has adopted 97 resolutions criticizing countries; 83 out of those 97 have been against Israel (86%).” These resolutions have come down despite terrible human rights violations in nations such as North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Venezuela, and Syria which have received little attention in the UN Headquarters.

It’s important for us as college students to be critical of the UN. Its unwarranted attacks on Israel negatively affect how we view Israel and could lead to anti-Israel groups gaining strength by further defaming Israel’s name. Understanding the good deeds the Israeli government and private enterprises perform is important to how we view the Arab-Israeli conflict.

For example, the UN World Health Organization ratifies resolutions painting Israel as a health rights violator, but neglects the fact that the Israeli Defense Forces and Israeli charitable organizations provide medicine, food and clothing to thousands of Syrians fleeing the Syrian Civil War. Additionally, On September 20th, the IDF dispatched a team of 75 engineers, medics and soldiers to Mexico to aid in the relief efforts and examine structural damage after two devastating earthquakes hit Mexico’s capital.

During Guterres’ visit to Israel, he was introduced to several humanitarian start-up companies at the Innovation Showcase including Innovation: Africa — an Israeli association that brings solar, water and agricultural technologies from Israel to struggling rural communities in Africa.

By understanding the humanitarian causes Israel stands for, and its successes as a robust democracy, UN Secretary-General Guterres — and ASU students alike — can gain a different perspective regarding Israel that effectively discredits the biased and unwarranted attacks Israel sustains in the meetings of UN leaders.

Contributed by Arizona State University CAMERA Fellow Graham Paul.


Indian Prime Minister Modi Arrives in Israel on Historic Visit

Historic is a word used far too often to describe events, but the visit of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Israel truly justifies the expression. It is historic for numerous reasons, firstly, due to it being the first ever visit of an Indian Prime Minister to Israel. But secondly, because it is the pinnacle of what has been a remarkable rise in Indian-Israeli relations.

India has traditionally been unfriendly towards Israel. It voted against the 1947 UN Partition Plan, and although it recognized the Jewish state in 1950, it did not have an embassy in the country until 1992. Among other factors, India’s traditional cold stance on Israel was related to the country having a large Muslim population, which has been a strong voice against normalizing relations with Israel, and forced Indian leaders to tread carefully. And secondly, at the time of India’s formation, in order to gain vital support from the Muslim League against the British, the leaders of the future Indian state took an anti-Zionist position.

India joined Arab states in voting against the 1947 UN Partition Plan (SANDIWARA)

As a result, whether it be in the United Nations or other international bodies and forums, India up until recently had always voted against Israel, and in 1987 India became the first non-Arab country to recognize the ‘State of Palestine’. Yet despite the fact diplomatic relations were so cold, Israel frequently sold India weapons for its various conflicts with China and Pakistan.

It wasn’t until 1992 that India finally opened up an embassy in Israel, largely due to pressure from the US, yet this didn’t particularly lead to a warming of relations.

However, with the turn of the century, Indian-Israeli cooperation reached new heights with India’s Foreign Minister visiting Israel for the first time in 2000, and Israel providing even more military help to India. Improved relations with India were finally out in the open when Israeli PM Ariel Sharon became the first Israeli Prime Minister to visit the South Asian country.  Despite this, India still continued its anti-Israel stance in the United Nations.

Indian Prime Minister Modi meeting with Netanyahu at the UN in 2016 (India-Israel Business)

All this changed in 2014 with the election of Narendra Modi. Attitudes in the UN changed, and India has started to show a policy of Abstaining on matters relating to Israel, a break in decades of aligning with Arab states. Moreover, Indian-Israeli defense cooperation has gone from strength to strength, with India becoming the largest buyer of Israeli military equipment, and Israel becoming India’s second largest supplier.

And unlike prime ministers before him, Modi has been willing to publicly share his support and relationship with Israel, frequently using Twitter as a way of doing so, including tweeting in Hebrew.

Modi tweeting Netanyahu in Hebrew reminiscing their previous meeting

Modi’s visit to Israel this week is the curtain piece of a remarkable rise in relations between Israel and India. Despite India having a population that is often hostile to Israel, the nation is starting to become a reliable friend to the Jewish state, and the visit of Modi can be seen as yet another win in a successful year for Israeli diplomacy.

Contributed by Daniel Kosky, CAMERA Intern.

There’s a New Sheriff in Town

Nikki Haley has been making headlines since she began her term as the United States Ambassador to the UN. During an interview at the AIPAC Policy Conference in Washington DC, she explained her positions and outlook – and it certainly went down well with the crowd.

Last month, Ambassador Haley made a speech, after her first meeting at the UN Security Council about the Middle East. The speech went viral, as she described her surprise at how the Council seemed to ignore Iran, ISIS, Hezbollah and Hamas, and focus solely on criticizing the one democracy in the region, Israel. She followed those tough words up with tough actions. She blocked the appointment of the former Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad to a senior UN position, saying she did not support the signal it would send to the Palestinian Authority. And recently, her strong stance condemning an anti-Israel UN report authored by the notorious Richard Falk, lead to real consequences. Antonio Guterres, the Secretary General of the UN, distanced himself from the report, the report was removed from the UN website, and the head of the UN agency responsible for it resigned.

Ambassador Nikki Haley with UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres

At AIPAC, Ambassador Haley made it clear that she means business. “The days of Israel-bashing are over,” Haley said, pointing to the fact that since she entered office there has already been a notable reduction in anti-Israel rhetoric at the UN. This new stance will also express itself in the decisions that the USA makes at the UN – “Never again will we do again, what we saw with Resolution 2334.” She also spoke about her personal heritage, as the child of Indian immigrants, and how that impacted her connection to Israel. “I have seen so many similarities between the Israeli culture and the Indian culture. We are very close knit, we love our families, we have a strong work ethic, we believe in professionalism and philanthropy, giving back.”

Her most memorable line, after a spirited monologue about the first few months in the office, was this:

“So for anyone who says you can’t get anything done at the UN? They need to know, there is a new sheriff in town.”

Hopefully the sheriff can clean up the act of this notoriously anti-Israel organisation.

Nikki Haley rose to receive the standing ovation from the AIPAC crowd

Contributed by Aron White, CAMERA intern

The Most Important Thing You Will Never Hear About Last Week’s UN Resolution

The discussion and analysis of Resolution 2334, passed by the Security Council last week, is still continuing in earnest. But in all the coverage of the resolution and its aftermath in the media, there is one central point – maybe in fact, the most central point – that has not been mentioned and it is actually just one photo. I would argue however, that without mentioning this photo, no media outlet can truly have claimed to have presented the full story of Resolution 2334 and its meaning.


This image (captured by Palestinian Media Watch) is from the Facebook page of Fatah; the party of Mahmoud Abbas. Posted a day after the resolution, the words at the top of the image say “Thank you!” and then it lists the fourteen countries who voted for resolution 2334. In the center of the picture is the “Palestine” shaped knife stabbing the word “settlement” with blood pouring from it.

This reaction to resolution 2334 is not praise or condemnation, but incitement of the most explicit type – a call to people to stab and attack settlers and settlements. And it comes not from a fringe extremist, but from the party of the President of the Palestinian Authority himself.

This was not widely reported – just as many other instances of Palestinian incitement are not reported – but to ignore it is to ignore a crucial piece of the jigsaw. Focusing on it helps understand the difference between Western and Palestinian views of the conflict. Whereas Samantha Power, in her speech after the American abstention at the vote, spoke of a desire to see two states next to each other in peace and security, this cartoon speaks of a desire to attack and harm settlers. For the USA, resolution 2334 was about securing the prospects of a two state solution. This cartoon implies that the Palestinians see resolution 2334 as supporting their right to violence – and rather than pushing them to coexistence – it makes them emboldened in radical positions.

The fact that such a cartoon goes unmentioned in the media is also jarring considering the level of incitement that is considered newsworthy if it comes from an Israeli politician. Netanyahu’s comments about ‘the Arabs voting in droves’ still are mentioned frequently, a year and a half after they happened – yet surely a call to murder settlers is far worse than playing the race card in an election?

The extent and depth of Palestinian incitement is a significant piece of any understanding of the Arab Israeli conflict; one that is not focused on enough and which was missed once again last week. The veneration of martyrs, financial support for terrorists and spreading of incitement via pictures and music do not go away just because Western ears don’t want to read or hear about them. Until the Palestinians are challenged on these issues, they will not change their approach and will remain more hard-line in their position – harming both Israel and themselves.

Contributed by CAMERA intern Aron White.

Originally published on UK Media Watch.

Criticize David Myers’ Evaluation of the Israel-Palestine Conflict

CAMERA Fellow Aviya Zarur

CAMERA Fellow Aviya Zarur

On Sept. 20, the Schusterman Center for Israel Studies at Brandeis University brought a Board Director of the New Israel Fund, Prof. David Myers, to speak about the Arab-Israel conflict and who is responsible. Myers’ goal was to take a step back and analyze the events leading up to creation of Israel in 1948. Although the discussion was presented as an academic lecture, it was actually, in my opinion, a one-sided, biased outlook on the conflict. Myers attempted to present a three-dimensional approach to blame Israel, Palestine and Europe for the Israel-Palestine conflict, but his stance on the issue failed to accurately consider all sides of the conflict.

Myers used his focus on Europe to ignore parts of history. He spoke about Europe’s responsibility and the affect the Holocaust had on the current state of Israel without taking note of everyone who was involved. For example, according to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, the highest-ranked Muslim religious leader of Jerusalem, the Grand Mufti, Haj Amin al-Husseini, met with Hitler, ideologically supported Hitler’s “final solution” and considered spreading it to the Arab countries during World War II. In a Nov. 2, 1943 address in Berlin, the Grand Mufti stated, “But most of all they [the Nazis] have definitely solved the Jewish problem. These ties, especially the last, make our friendship with Germany not a provisional one, dependent on conditions, but a permanent and lasting friendship based on mutual interests,” according to an Aug. 22 piece published by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs.

Myers not only left out this critical part of history but also disseminated extreme statements about Israelis such as implicitly comparing Israeli-Jews to Nazis by saying that the oppressed had become like their oppressors in behavior and attitude. While Israel is not perfect, this comparison is flawed, and it misrepresents the facts. Regardless of one’s stance on the Israel-Palestine conflict, it is clear that Israeli policies cannot be described as ethnic cleansing or genocide. Although some point to the high numbers of Palestinian deaths as an indication of genocide, these people fail to acknowledge that these death tolls result from differences in military strategies, among other things ― not genocide. This double standard often presented by the UN fails to address the country’s right to self defense. Never in any point of Israel’s history has there been a mandate calling for murder of all Palestinians as there was for Jews in Germany under Hitler’s “final solution.” Such absurd claims diminish the significance of the Holocaust and suggest hostility towards Jews and their history.

Myers’ entire presentation focused on where the responsibility for the Israel-Palestine conflict lies, and while he attempted to put forth a “three-dimensional” approach that applied blame to Europe, Israel and Palestine, he failed to distribute the blame adequately. By not considering the Hebron massacre of 1929, during which 67 Jews were murdered by Arab terrorists, Myers left out crucial parts of history that contribute to the blame. Similarly, he did not explain that the campaign of anti-Jewish violence across the British Mandate Palestine in 1936 was led by Grand Mufti al-Husseini.

Worse, the terrorism that Myers avoided discussing did not decline in the 1950s and 1960s. Israelis suffered mass-casualty attacks by the Egyptian Fedayeen and the founding of the Palestinian Liberation Organization. Even today, there is raging anti-Semitism in the Middle East, stemming from the Palestinian Authority and Hamas. This past summer, the U.S. State Department accused the PA media of promoting anti-Semitism through the dissemination of “religiously intolerant material,” like television programs that “denied a historical Jewish presence in Jerusalem” or even went as far as calling Jewish people “evil,” according to an Aug. 17 Jewish News article.

In addition to ignoring a lot of harm caused by some Palestinians, Myers ignored the actions of many Palestinians who risk their lives trying to end the conflict and expose the corruption of the PA and Hamas. Instead of supporting this community of Palestinians, Myers presented the insulting portrayal that Israel has complete control of all Palestinians. To say that Myers effectively advocates for the Palestinian community is as misleading as saying he advocates for Israelis.

Looking at the bigger picture, zooming out the lens and including Arab responsibility in the conflict, it is clear that it is not correct to refer to this conflict as only between the Palestinians and Israelis but rather between the larger Arab and Muslim world and Israel. Israelis are not the majority population of the Middle East. If Israel had the upper hand, it would not constantly be living in fear of state-sponsored terrorism coming from Saudi Arabia and Iran. More specifically, existing as a majority population might reduce the fear of complete destruction by nuclear weapons in the hands of Hezbollah in Lebanon or Hamas in Gaza who want to see Israel destroyed. Israel and its people are a minority in a region full of irrational hostility and hate toward the Jewish people, especially from its neighboring countries such as Syria and Jordan. According to Israeli Defense Forces, since 2005 alone, more than 11,000 rockets have been fired by terrorists into Israel, putting 5 million Israelis in constant threat of rocket fire. Half a million of these citizens only have 60 seconds to find shelter.


Myers asked Israel to self-destruct by suggesting it grant citizenship to Palestinians ― thus disrupting the balance of Israel’s democracy and reducing the political power of Jewish-Israelis in their own asylum. I ask him to reconsider his absurd “three-dimensional” approach, which fails to fully analyze the conflict and adequately recognize the needs of both Israelis and Palestinians. I also ask for the Schusterman Center for Israel Studies at Brandeis University to host another lecture about the Israel-Palestine conflict that is not riddled with biased misinterpretations caused by blank gaps of hidden history.

Originally published in The Justice.

Contributed by Brandeis University CAMERA Fellow Aviya Zarur.

United Nations International Day of Democracy

Today is the UN’s International Day of Democracy.

Israel was established as a parliamentary democracy, a state with fundamental democratic values. While much of the Middle East is hostile to democratic governments from forming, Israel strives to constantly develop as a democracy. Between rights for Palestinianswomen, and members of the LGBTQ community, Israel is a leader in democratic values in the Middle East, not to mention the world.

Danny Danon, first Israeli head of a commitee at the United Nations. Source: Facebook Page

Danny Danon, first Israeli head of a committee at the United Nations. Source: Facebook Page

Israel is often held to unfair scrutiny by the United Nations. While Syria tears itself to shreds, impoverishment only increases in India, and female genital mutilation is accepted among many countries, the UN chooses to unfairly criticize Israel rather than focus on critical international issues.

The UN ironically tried to condemn Israel for violating health standards at a World Health Organization assembly. Not only are Israeli health regulations up to level, Israel is a leader in international aid when other countries are in need of assistance.

Likewise, the UN tried to accuse Israel of not fully supporting women’s rights. In all areas, women in Israel have full equal rights. They lead in government, military, and all professional fields in Israel.

Just like any other democratic country, there are room for improvements. However, its democratic values cannot go unappreciated and its efforts to promote human rights should not be overlooked.

With pride in the democracy it is today, Israel celebrates the UN’s International Day of Democracy.

“Dodgin’ Bullets” – Matisyahu, Kosha Dillz and the BDS Movement

When reggae star Matisyahu took the stage at the Rototom Sunsplash Festival in Spain in August 2015, he faced a much different audience than he had in previous performances. He was confronted by a sea of Palestinian flags and extended middle fingers. Angry protesters chanted “Naziyahu!” and hurled a storm of shoes at the singer. Throughout the performance, the security team gritted their teeth nervously. Yet Matisyahu played on, as cheers eventually drowned out the negative words.  But how did this all start?

                                             Source: Haaretz.com

A few days before the concert, the festival directors, under pressure from the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions movement (BDS), canceled Matisyahu’s performance, citing his refusal to publicly support “the Palestinians’ right to a state.”  Matisyahu, whose real name is Matthew Miller, is an American, not Israeli. BDS targeted him because he is Jewish.

Why would Matisyahu be brought into a conflict for a country not even his own? This blurring of the lines between protesting Israeli politics and holding Jews at-large responsible is a frequent technique by the BDS movement – and it backfired. In the words of Matisyahu: “Jews and non Jews spoke up about the injustice of the only publicly recognized Jew on the festival line-up being called out to promote a political agenda.” The outcry overwhelmed the initial call to protest, and even the Spanish government called for the artist’s reinstatement. The festival reinvited Matisyahu, who still faced staunch opposition and disruption from BDS supporters during his performance. Yet, he played on, calling all in the audience to let “music be your flag.”

Matisyahu’s troubling experience with BDS  inspired his collaborative work with Jewish rapper Kosha Dillz, entitled “Dodgin’ Bullets,” which was released on July 15th. According to the artist, the track is “…not just a political statement geared [towards supporters of] the BDS movement or the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, but one of an existential and spiritual revolution, whereby one is able to dodge the bullets meant to knock you off your true life’s mission as a human being on this planet: to love with all of your heart, soul, and might!!! And to turn bullets of hatred into the music of the soul.” 

The BDS movement, which promotes an academic and cultural boycott of Israel, has a history of pressuring Israeli and non-Israeli artists to condemn Israel’s actions concerning Palestinians (including pop-star Pharrell and rock artist Bruce Springsteen, to name only a couple).

                        Matisyahu and Kosha Dillz (source: billboard.com)

In the past, Matisyahu has performed at events run by CAMERA-supported groups (for example, “Declare your Freedom” by Tulane University Students Supporting Israel), and has even brought his amazing voice to the United Nations. Kosha Dillz has also partnered with CAMERA-supported groups, including a concert hosted by the 49ers for Israel at California State University Long Beach.  Check out the music video for Dodgin’ Bullets below!

Matisyahu sings at the UN. Source: onlysimchas.com                     Matisyahu sings at the UN. Source: onlysimchas.com

Contributed by CAMERA Intern Andrew Steinberg.

On Iran’s Nuclear Violations

CAMERA Fellow Sivanna Shusterman.

CAMERA Fellow Sivanna Shusterman.

Last year, a nuclear agreement was established between Iran and the United States. The agreement essentially stated that tough sanctions would be lifted off Iran in exchange for the country’s word to end its nuclear weapon development. Since the deal was passed the seas have been quiet but recently, things changed.

In clear violation of the nuclear deal, Iran held multiple ballistic missile tests. This particular offense violates the United Nations Security Council Resolution 2331, which states that Iran is “not to undertake any activity related to ballistic missiles designed to be capable of delivering nuclear weapons, including launches using such ballistic missile technology.”

Iranian officials have responded by saying that they will not cease these missile tests since it was not actually a violation of the agreement. According to Brig. Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh, a commander in the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps who is in charge of the country’s missile program, these missiles were tested for defensive purposes and the country will not stop this activity due to the fact that they are “always ready to defend the country against any aggressor.” Iranian Foreign Ministry officials have also spoken on the matter saying that since these missiles are not capable of carrying nuclear warheads, the tests are not considered a violation worth of sanctions.

A ballistic missile is launched and tested in an undisclosed location, Iran, March 9, 2016. REUTERS/Mahmood Hosseini/TIMA

A ballistic missile is launched and tested in an undisclosed location, Iran, March 9, 2016. REUTERS/Mahmood Hosseini/TIMA

Here are the issues: A nuclear capable missile has been defined as any missile with a payload over 500 kilograms and a range of 300 kilometers. The missiles surpass normal range and weight that is considered internationally acceptable to be considered a nuclear capable missile, even though, according to Iranian officials, these missiles may not have been designed to carry a nuclear warhead. Some of the missiles tested by Iran carried 24 warheads and one ton of TNT, which would completely obliterate Israel.

Not only this, but to reiterate the actual threat, on the sides of the missiles, “Israel must be wiped off the face of the earth” was written. In fact, The Iranian Revolutionary guard’s senior commander was quoted as saying that these missiles were designed to strike Israel. This new turn of events has prompted Israel to step up and call for consequences against Iran’s violations, and rightfully so. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has released a statement calling for the UN to take “immediate punitive steps following the repeated gross transgressions by Iran in the matter of rockets.” Israel’s’ Ambassador to the UN, Danny Danon, has also come to the UN Security Council encouraging them to condemn Iran’s recent behavior. He also pointed out that the tests are a violation of the UN resolution 2331. This would be an outrageous violation and should not be overlooked, as it is a clear breach of the agreement.

The phrase “Israel must be wiped off the face of the earth” is a direct existential threat to Israel and its people. This is not a defensive remark on the part of Iran. On the contrary it shows that they in fact desire an offensive stance against Israel. These type of long range missiles have the capability to cover all of Israel’s territory, proving to be a very real threat to the country’s existence in the Middle East. Israel is an important ally to the United States and this existential threat must be taken seriously.

The UN Security Council will be holding a closed door meeting to discuss this issue. According to Samantha Power, The U.S. Ambassador to the UN, the United States will hold said meeting and is encouraging other countries to cooperate in efforts to undermine Iran’s missile program that could be detrimental. These violations cannot occur. Existential threats to the lives of millions of people, and an entire state that is an ally to the United States, must be addressed immediately to avoid an enormous tragedy from taking place.

Contributed by CAMERA Fellow at Baruch College, Sivanna Shusterman.

We’re Sending Iran the Wrong Message


CAMERA Fellow Raizy Cohen.

On Tuesday, March 13th, Vice President Joe Biden was in Israel discussing prospects for peace with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas who, in the classic fashion of Israel’s “partners for peace,” rejected all proposals. At the same time not too far away, Iran was busy test-firing ballistic missiles capable of reaching Israel. This clear sign of belligerence was not surprising coming from Iran, the largest state-sponsor of terrorism the world over.

Iranian Missile Test

Some are claiming that these missiles are not in direct violation of Security Council Resolution 2231, put in place shortly after the passing of the Obama administration’s incredibly controversial nuclear deal with Iran, which “calls upon Iran not to undertake any activity related to ballistic missiles.”  As if to assuage doubts that they were not in violation of international law, Iran then fired two ballistic missiles on Wednesday emblazoned with Ayatollah Khomeini’s ever-catchy tagline “Israel must be wiped off the Earth.” To add incitement to aggression, General Amir Ali Haji Zada, commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard’s air force, informed the media that these missiles “belong to the Palestinian people.” Yet somehow, Iran is maintaining that this launch, and its blatant hostility and provocation, was carried out purely with self-defense in mind. It is baffling that some people possess the power to delude themselves into believing that Iran is seeking nuclear missiles for peaceful purposes.

A week later, Biden told Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that “a nuclear-armed Iran is an absolutely unacceptable threat to Israel, to the region and the United States.” He then assured Netanyahu that America will see to it that Iran adheres to nuclear deal, proposed by the Obama administration this past summer. “If in fact they break the deal,” said Biden, “we will act.” So it seems that, given this obvious sign of aggression, the US should “act.” America said it would bring this matter to the Security Council, which is to convene on Monday to discuss what American ambassador to the UN, Samantha Powers, calls “dangerous launches.” Yet despite the fact that these launches were “provocative,” it was determined by the Obama administration that these missiles did not violate the nuclear agreement.

In response to this attack, Bibi beseeched the free world to “take immediate punitive steps following the repeated gross transgressions by Iran in the matter of rockets.” The European Union is considering issuing sanctions on Iran given the recent missile tests, an especially bold move considering the fact that this is a governing body who claimed that the singling out of Israeli products with labeling would somehow “serve to reduce the current levels of tension, fear and despair, among both Israelis and Palestinians.”

Even those shortsighted or intellectually dishonest enough to claim that the Iran deal is good for the free world must admit it qualifies as “a pretty good deal,”  as Colin Powell so eloquently said, only if all parties adhere to said deal.  If Iran can break the nuclear agreement so soon after its passing and feel no consequences, what kind of message does that send?

Contributed by CAMERA Fellow at NYU Polytechnic, Raizy Cohen.

Apply for the 2016-2017 CAMERA Fellowship here!