Performed by, Roi Kackon | aish.com
Written and Produced by Aish.com
Directed by Shooteast
Performed by Roi Kackon
With thanks to Beit Sefer Michah Reiser, Rishon Letzion
Photo courtesy of: vocativ
by, Shane Dixon Kavanaugh | vocativ
A Montreal businessman is on a mission to save scores of women and girls from being sold into sexual slavery by Islamic State militants in Iraq, and thousands of people around the world are joining his cause.
With cold hard cash, Steve Maman pays for the release of Yazidis and Christians from their ISIS captors, who have created a cottage industry out of peddling Iraqi minority women to the highest bidder. What began as a campaign among members of Montreal’s Sephardic Jewish community, to which Maman belongs, has become a global movement with a GoFundMe page that topped a half-million dollars on Thursday.
Video courtesy of: CBN News
The swell of donations and growing global awareness could become a lifeline for some 2,700 young women and girls estimated to still be in captivity behind Islamic State lines.
“We cannot sit and remain indifferent to what is going on,” the 42-year-old father of six, who supporters have dubbed the “Jewish Schindler” after German factory owner Oskar Schindler, credited with saving more than 1,000 Jews during the Holocaust, told Vocativ. “We cannot wait and rely on others to act. ‘Why not me?’ is the question we should all be asking ourselves.”
But critics believe Maman’s campaign will pour thousands of dollars into the hands of ISIS militants, who have waged a brutal campaign against religious and ethnic minorities since their group declared its caliphate across Syria and Iraq last year. The United Nations reported that last August up to 5,000 Yazidis were slaughtered in Iraq’s Sinjar district and beyond. Thousands of Christian and Yazidi women were later taken as ISIS brides or sold into sexual slavery, humanitarian groups have found.
Steve Maman’s campaign to free Yazidi and Christian women and girls held captive by ISIS reached $500,000 on Thursday, August 20. Photo courtesy of: vocativ
News of the atrocities stunned Maman, who runs a classic car dealership and crystal wholesale business. “It’s a level of barbarism which was on another level of persecution,” he told the Toronto Star.
Determined to act, he launched an organization called the Liberation of Christian and Yazidi Children of Iraq. Maman then started calling his business associates, as well as members of Montreal’s Jewish community, to finance the project. Later, he used connections that he had in Baghdad to contact hostage negotiators and humanitarian aid workers.
According to Maman, his organization directs money to brokers on the ground in Iraq, who then use the funds to negotiate a price with Islamic State fighters in the mountain ranges of Iraqi Kurdistan. The Yazidi and Christian captives can be purchased for a fee of between $1,000 and $3,000, which includes a sizable commission for the broker, Maman said.
Once freed, the women and girls are initially taken to refugee camps in Kurdistan. They receive food, shelter and medical care, Maman said. Many of the women and girls say they were sexually abused by ISIS militants. “The rapes, abuse, and brutality they suffer at the hands of their captors are beyond imagination,” wrote Maman on his GoFundMe page.
Dubbed the “Jewish Schindler,” Steve Maman (left) meets with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Photo courtesy of: vocativ
To date, Maman’s group has rescued 128 Yazidis and Christians, he said. Hundreds more, however, may soon be freed from ISIS. By Thursday this week his GoFundMe campaign topped $500,000 from more than 2,500 donations worldwide. Maman’s current goal, according to the campaign, is to raise $2 million.
“If he doesn’t it’s a stunning indictment on humanity,” Pamela Geller, the political commentator and sponsor of the controversial “Draw Muhammad” contest in Garland, Texas last May, told Vocativ. She, along with other anti-Islamic activists in the United States, have championed Maman’s work for months.
“What should we do? Stand by while these girls are gang-raped, sold, torn apart, and tortured?” said Geller. “Only his group is doing anything to save them.”
News of the businessman’s work continues to spread across countries andcontinents and an increasing number of critics have taken to comment threads online to say that all those donations go straight to ISIS coffers .
“This is both commendable and problematic,” said one commenter on the Toronto Star website. “The priority should be returning these girls and women to their families and relative safety as quickly as possible. But at the price of rewarding their kidnappers and providing ISIS with money?”
Others are less diplomatic. “FOLKS IF YOU GIVE $$ TO ISIS MIDDLEMEN IN ANY WAY SHAPE OR FORM A LARGE CUT ENDS UP WITH ISIS THIS ONLY FUNDS NEW ABDUCTIONS AND FUTURE RANSOMS AT HIGHER PRICES,” wrote a user by the name of Kale Lillian on Maman’s GoFundMe page.
Maman remains undeterred. Compared to the billions ISIS has reportedly madefrom looting from banks, seizing oil fields and other illicit activity, the money spent rescuing these women and girls is nominal, he said. “This is pocket change to them,” he said.
After a pause, Maman added: “Honestly, there is no other option to rescue them. How much longer can we wait to save them?”
Muslims Slaughter Dozens of Hindus and Buddhists at Erawan Hindu Shrine in Bangkok.
by, Sky News Australia | h/t Glen Roberts @ Trop
A bomb has exploded outside a religious shrine in a bustling hub of the Thai capital, killing at least 19 people and injuring more than 120 others in an attack authorities said targeted foreigners.
The blast occurred about 6.30pm (2130 AEST) on Monday when the streetside Erawan Shrine close to upscale shopping malls was packed with worshippers and tourists.
‘I heard a very loud bang, it made the whole building shake so I ran outside to see what had happened,’ Panupan Chansing, 20, a hotel worker at the nearby Grand Hyatt Erawan, told AFP.
‘I saw bodies lying on the ground and I saw vehicles on fire. I feel very sad and sorry that this has happened to Thai people … I’m scared.’
Police confirmed 19 people were killed, including 10 Thais, one Chinese and one Filipino citizen. More than 120 others were injured, according to police.
The nationalities of the other people who died were not immediately clear.
But China’s official Xinhua news agency said two Chinese nationals had died, while the governments of Hong Kong, Singapore and Taiwan reported that some of their citizens were injured.
Video courtesy of: JSM Media Productions
Bangkok has endured years of deadly political violence, with a military junta now ruling the nation, and a decades-long Muslim insurgency in the far south that has claimed thousands of lives.
Police spokesman Prawut Thavornsiri told AFP the blast was likely politically motivated and designed to bring ‘chaos’.
Thailand’s defence minister said the bombing was aimed at foreigners in an attempt to damage the country’s tourist industry, which is a rare bright spot in an otherwise gloomy economy.
‘It was a TNT bomb … the people who did it targeted foreigners and to damage tourism and the economy,’ said Prawit Wongsuwong, a former general who is believed to have been one of the key coup-makers.
No one claimed responsibility for the attack, however, and it was unclear immediately who was responsible.
Islamic militants have carried out many attacks in other parts of Southeast Asia, including on Indonesia’s holiday island of Bali in 2002 that killed 202 people.
But they have not made Thailand a prime target.
A government spokesman said it was too early to speculate on who was behind the attack.
Glass was strewn across the street after the explosion inside the gates to the shrine, which is in the central Chidlom district close to the famous Sukhmuvit Road shopping strip.
Charred and shattered motorcycles littered the scene, alongside hunks of concrete, with pools of blood on the pavement and two bodies crumpled on the steps of the shrine.
The attack drew quick condemnation internationally, with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s office releasing a statement saying he was shocked.
‘He expresses his condolences to the bereaved families and to the people and government of Thailand,’ the statement said.
‘He hopes that those responsible will be brought to justice.’
Howard Fenton, a 50-year-old computer programmer from Australia, said he was dismayed to see violence return once more to Bangkok’s streets.
‘There’ve just been so many problems in Thailand over the years,’ he told AFP.
‘You sort of hope that it’s going to go away but when it comes back again it’s pretty shocking. And coming this violently is a real worry.
‘I really hope sense will prevail and it doesn’t spiral into something really, really shocking,’ he added.
The blasts came just hours after fresh economic data showed Thailand’s economy had slowed in the second quarter.
Tourism, which accounts for 10 per cent of the country’s GDP, was one of the few positive growth areas.
Thailand had been expecting a surge in Chinese visitors in October for the annual National Day holiday, often dubbed ‘Golden Week’ by China’s neighbours because of the huge tourism bonanza it produces.
Soon after the blasts the country’s tourism minister Kobkarn Wattanavrangkul visited the nearby Chulalongkorn Hospital where many of the Chinese victims were taken.
‘We wanted to make sure there are translators … because a lot of the Chinese they cannot speak English,’ she told AFP.
Asked whether the bombs would impact tourism she said: ‘This is a big concern for us.’
Jews/Judeo-Christians United With Hindus & Buddhists
Our hearts and prayers are with you…
by, Suleiman Al-Khalidi | Reuters
Islamic State militants have captured dozens of Christian families after seizing a strategically located town in the central Syrian province of Homs, a monitor said on Friday.
The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said at least 230 people were kidnapped or detained, including dozens of Christians, some of whom were taken from a church in Qaryatain, the town captured overnight after heavy fighting with the Syrian army.
Rami Abdulrahman, the head of the Observatory, said the Christians were “either kidnapped from checkpoints or raids or from churches.”
Among those seized were 45 women and 19 children, including 11 families, some of whom were on a militants’ wanted list, said the monitor that tracks the war’s violence through an extensive network of sources on the ground.
There were also hundreds of residents, Muslims and Christians, whose families have lost touch with them since the militants captured the area, according to Abdulrahman.
Video courtesy of: Reuters
Qaryatain is near a road linking the ancient city of Palmyra to the Qalamoun mountains, along the border with Lebanon.
The hardline militant group has been gaining ground in the desert areas east and south of Homs after it took over the ancient Roman city of Palmyra last May.
The Syrian army has launched a large-scale counteroffensive to recapture the city, which lies in a region where some of Syria’s largest gas fields are located. But so far has made no significance advances.
An army statement said its forces had targeted “terrorist outposts” in the area and killed scores of militants but did not confirm the capture of the town by the militants.
An Assyrian Christian group said these abductions were the latest in a string of events that targeted their community, one of the oldest Christian populations in the Middle East.
Two priests, Father Yacoub Murad and Monk Petros, who ran two monasteries in the area, went missing last May from the town of Qaryatain, according to the Assyrian Monitor for Human Rights, a Christian lobby group.
The group said at least 1,400 families had fled the town to safer areas or took shelter in the government-controlled city of Homs.
Islamic State has killed members of religious minorities and Sunni Muslims who do not swear allegiance to its self-declared “caliphate”. They also consider Christians as infidels.
Last February, the hardline jihadists abducted at least 250 Assyrian Christians, many of whom were children and women, during raids on villages in northeastern Syria. That mass abduction coincided with an offensive in the same region by Kurdish forces backed by U.S.-led air strikes.
The fate of many of these civilians is unclear, as is that of a number of other priests who have gone missing and are believed to be held by the militants, according to Christian groups.
Eritreans on trial for imprisoning and raping woman, in further evidence of threat of illegal immigrants leftist groups ignore.
by, Ari Yashar | Arutz Sheva
Indictments were submitted on Friday morning against five illegal immigrants from Eritrea in Africa, who are accused of imprisoning and gang raping a young Jewish woman in Rishon Letzion a month-and-a-half ago.
A media gag order on the case was lifted on Tuesday, revealing that the 34-year-old woman filed a complaint to police after a group of men who she met at a club while intoxicated raped her in a planned attack.
She revealed that the men took advantage of her being under the influence of alcohol to take her to their apartment against her will after she left the club with a friend. When he was distracted they whisked her away and imprisoned her in a room and raped her in turns. Police were able to gather enough evidence to prove her story and arrest the culprits.
The five infiltrators who had an indictment submitted against them on Friday were charged with abduction so as to imprison and commit sex crimes, imprisoning, rape under aggravated circumstances, and sexual assault.
The five were named as Amanel Takya (27), Takali Gabru (22), Atakla Avtarmarim (28), Efraim Kidna (22), and Kidna Tedse (23).
In requesting a detention extension until the end of proceedings the woman’s attorney, Einat Benita, said the assailants “fell on the complainant like predators, treated her like a tool to satisfy their desires, and passed her from one to the other as an object.”
“Leftists don’t care about women being raped”
Brutal crime committed by illegal immigrants has tragically become acommon occurrence, particularly in southern Tel Aviv where a large concentration of the infiltrators live, but the horrific crimes have largely gone without condemnation by leftist rights groups and women’s groups – or the Supreme Court which has repeatedly struck down legislation aiming to deport them.
Activist May Golan, head of the Hebrew City movement seeking to deport the illegal immigrants, told Arutz Sheva last September that leftist groups have proven they don’t care about Jewish women getting raped by the infiltrators.
Infiltration is feared to be on the rise again, after over the last weekend alone 15 illegal immigrants jumped the Sinai security fence built to stop them.
Partially fueling the sexual crime is the fact that the infiltrators are nearly all lone men without families, indicating how their goal in arriving in Israel illegally is to find better job opportunities rather than “refuge” as is often claimed.
Official statistics in Israel have revealed the infiltrators are job migrantsand not refugees, in an assessment that echoes findings of other countries.
A report issued in late March by the British Home Office determines that defectors from the Eritrean army do not, in fact, face life-threatening danger in Eritrea, and therefore do not deserve refugee status in other countries. Britain has issued new guidelines for dealing with the Eritreans who have flooded that country.
Likewise, detailed research from Denmark revealed Eritreanimmigrants do not warrant refugee status by any definition.
Farrakhan stated: ‘..the qur’an teaches us that retaliation is prescribed..’
by, Pam Key | Breitbart | h/t Glen Roberts @ Trop
Last week in Miami at Mt. Zion Baptist Church, Nation of Islam head Louis Farrakhan said he was looking for “10,000 fearless men” to “rise up and kill those who kill us; stalk them and kill them and let them feel the pain of death that we are feeling!”
Farrakhan said “I’m looking for 10,000 in the midst of a million. Ten thousand fearless men who say death is sweeter than continued life under tyranny. Death is sweeter than continuing to live and bury our children while the white folks give our killers hamburgers. Death is sweeter than watching us slaughter each other to the joy of a 400-year-old enemy. Death is sweeter. The Quran teaches persecution is worse than slaughter. Then it says retaliation is prescribed in matters of the slain. Retaliation is a prescription from God to calm the breasts of those whose children have been slain. So if the federal government won’t intercede in our affairs, then we must rise up and kill those who kill us; stalk them and kill them and let them feel the pain of death that we are feeling!”
The official newspaper of the Nation of Islam, founded in 1979 by Minister Louis Farrakhan, “The Final Call,” published the sermon excerpt as part of its “Justice Or Else” theme of the 20th anniversary of the Million Man March event set for October 10, in Washington, D.C.
Amir Cohen, an Israel Antiquities Authority worker displays a scroll at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem on July 20, 2015. This Biblical/Torah scroll was discovered in 1,500 year-old burnt Synagogue in 1970. – Photo courtesy of: Reuters & JewsNews
Burnt scroll found 45 years ago in archaeological excavations is oldest biblical text since Dead Sea Scrolls
by, JewsNews | h/t Billy L. Queen III
Israeli archaeologists said on Monday they had discerned biblical writing on a 1,500 year old scroll they deemed the oldest biblical text found since the Dead Sea Scrolls.
The completely charred scroll, which was found forty five years ago in archaeological excavations at Ein Gedi, on the western shore of the Dead Sea, was unveiled at the Israel Antiquities Authority Jerusalem laboratoryin the Israel Museum.
Scientists and researchers around the globe who worked over one year to decipher the biblical verses, using state of the art and advanced technologies, were surprised to find the scroll to be a 1,500 year old copy of the first eight verses of the Book of Leviticus.
“This discovery absolutely astonished us,” said Pnina Shor, curator and director of the IAA’s Dead Sea Scrolls Projects.
“We were certain it was just a shot in the dark but decided to try and scan the burnt scroll anyway. Now, not only can we bequeath the Dead Sea Scrolls to future generations, but also a part of the Bible from a Holy Ark of a 1,500-year old synagogue!”
“The knowledge that we are preserving the most important find of the 20th century and one of the western world’s most important cultural treasures causes us to proceed with the utmost care and caution and use the most advanced technologies available today,” she added.
To decipher the burnt remains, the IAA began working with Merkel Technologies Company, Ltd. Israel, which performed high resolution 3D scanning of some Dead Sea Scrolls fragments and phylactery cases via a Micro-CT scanner.
After the fragment of the Ein Gedi scroll was scanned, the IAA sent the results to Professor Brent Seales of the University of Kentucky, who developed a digital-imaging software capable of virtually unrolling the scroll and visualizing the text.
“The deciphering of the scroll, which was a puzzle for us for 45 years, is very exciting,” said Dr. Sefi Porath, who led the Ein Gedi excavations.
Lord Weidenfeld states; It was the Christians that saved me from the Nazis in 1938 and I want to repay them by saving them from ISIS.
by, Thomas Brooks-Pollock | The Independent | Shiryn Ghermezian | Algemeiner | h/t AINA
A Jewish man in the U.K. is funding the rescue of up to 2,000 Christian families from Islamic State terrorists in Syria and Iraq to show his gratitude for the Christians who saved him from Nazi persecution, The Independent reported on Tuesday.
The resettlement project, named Operation Safe Haven, last week arranged the flight of 150 Syrian Christians to Poland, where they will seek refugee. The group aims to provide 12-18 months of paid support to the refugees, according to The Independent.
The man behind the project is Lord Weidenfeld, 94, a former publisher who said he has “a debt to repay” to Christians because they provided him as a child with food and clothing, and helped him reach Britain after he fled Nazi-occupied Austria. In 1938, a year before the start of World War II, he arrived in Britain by train as part of the Kindertransport rescue effort that brought thousands of Jewish refugee children to the U.K.
“I had a debt to repay. It applies to so many young people who were on the Kindertransports,” he said. “It was Quakers and other Christian denominations who brought those children to England.”
“It was a very high-minded operation and we Jews should also be thankful and do something for the endangered Christians,” he added.
Lord Weidenfeld said he hopes to repeat the work of Sir Nicholas Winton, who organized Kindertransport trains that saved 669 youths from Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia. The famed humanitarian died on July 1.
Operation Safe Haven has faced criticism for its exclusion of Muslims, who have also been persecuted and forced from their homes by ISIS.
Lord Weidenfeld defended the project’s focus on Christians saying, “I can’t save the world, but there is a very specific possibility on the Christian side. Let others do what they like for the Muslims.”