BAHRAIN COMMEMORATES HOLOCAUST, COMBATS ANTISEMITISM: Bahrain is taking a lead in combating antisemitism and also commemorating the Holocaust.
The Kingdom, which has a small Jewish community and has played a key role in pushing tolerance, coexistence, and peace with Israel, is at the forefront of these recent efforts. Former ambassador to the US Houda Nonoo of Bahrain’s Foreign Ministry put out a message on Wednesday commemorating the Shoah. “We remember the six million lives taken from us too soon,” she wrote. Nonoo previously served as the ambassador of Bahrain to the United States and non-resident ambassador to Canada, Brazil, Mexico, and Argentina. (JPost / VFI News)
TWITCH RECEIVES HIGHEST MARK FOR EFFORTS TO REMOVE HOLOCAUST DENIAL: The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) gave Twitch the highest marks out of any other social network with reference to its efforts to combat Holocaust denial across the dedicated streaming platform.
The ADL issued a “report card” for each of the ten largest social media networks, which scrutinized platforms such as Twitch, TikTok, Youtube, Facebook, and Discord, among others – presenting them with a final grade after reviewing their policies toward Holocaust denial. The review took a deep look into each platform’s terms of service agreements in order to discover whether there are explicit Holocaust denial policies, how the platform addresses the issue in the case of an infraction, and what actions are taken if any. Twitch received a B, while Twitter, YouTube, and TikTok earned a C. Facebook, Discord, and Reddit “barely passed” with a D. No platform was awarded an A. (JPost / VFI News)
NETANYAHU: ‘NEVER AGAIN’ IS ISRAEL’S MISSION: Israel’s mission is to ensure the Jewish people will never be defenseless against those who seek to destroy it, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in honor of International Holocaust Remembrance Day.
“We remember this darkest chapter in human history when a European country decided to adopt a policy and a program to exterminate every last Jew, mobilizing the full power of a modern developed industrial state to implement this incredible nightmare,” Netanyahu said. The world has not learned the lessons of the Holocaust and eradicated antisemitism, the prime minister lamented. “The disease of antisemitism continues to contaminate and spread,” Netanyahu added. “A vaccine to safeguard against the antisemitism virus has yet to be found.” (JPost / VFI News)
EUROPEAN JEWISH ASSOCIATION MARKS INT’L HOLOCAUST MEMORIAL DAY ONLINE: The European Jewish Association, a Brussels-based Jewish advocacy NGO, held a large online gathering to mark International Holocaust Memorial Day on Wednesday, January 27.
A number of dignitaries, including EU commissioners, ministers, senators, and parliamentarians, including of the European Parliament, as well as Jewish leaders from across Europe, participated in the event, which honored the memory of those that perished during one of the darkest periods of European history. Israel’s government was also represented at a ministerial level. (JPost / VFI News)
76 YEARS HIDDEN: SECRET BUNKER DISCOVERED IN WARSAW GHETTO: Dozens of pairs of tefillin (phylacteries) have been discovered hidden in a previously-undiscovered bunker in the Warsaw Ghetto, Israel Hayom reported.
The tefillin are a century old but well-preserved and seem to have been placed in the bunker by the Jews who hid there during the Holocaust. Though the Jews were removed from the bunker and likely killed, the tefillin remained in their hiding place. The bunker itself was built by the Warsaw Ghetto rebels. The discovery comes as Polish authorities began a renewal of the city, destroying Warsaw Ghetto buildings in order to construct residential buildings. During the construction, the entry to a bunker was discovered, leading workers to investigate. (INN / VFI News)
ISRAEL OPENS EMBASSY IN UAE: Israel officially opened its embassy in the United Arab Emirates on Sunday.
Ambassador Eitan Na’eh, who will serve as charge d’affaires until a permanent ambassador is appointed, arrived in Abu Dhabi, the UAE’s capital to open the embassy. The Foreign Ministry said the new embassy “will advance the range of relations between the countries in all areas and expand ties with the Emirati government, economic bodies and the private sector, academia, media and more.” The embassy is in a temporary structure until a permanent one is found. Israel and the UAE announced that they are making peace and normalizing ties on August 15 of last year, launching the Abraham Accords. Three more Arab countries – Bahrain, Sudan, and Morocco – joined the accords in the subsequent months. (JPost / VFI News)
CABINET AUTHORIZES NORMALIZATION WITH MOROCCO: The cabinet approved Israel’s normalization agreement with Morocco in a unanimous vote on Sunday.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the agreement “a historic moment after four peace agreements with four Muslim and Arab states in four months” and praised King Mohammed VI. “Together we are advancing direct flights between the countries,” he said. “It will happen soon – economic, trade, technological cooperation, and the opening of missions in both countries.” Netanyahu also congratulated US President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris on entering office and said he expects to work with them “to strengthen the strong alliance between Israel and the US even more and expand the circle of peace between Israel and the Arab world for a real new Middle East and, of course, to deal with our shared challenges, foremost of which is the Iranian threat.” (JPost / VFI News)
IRAN EXECUTES A SECOND WRESTLER 5 MONTHS AFTER THE FIRST: The Iranian regime’s lethal assaults on decorated Iranian athletes continued unabated, with the execution of a second champion wrestler on Monday.
The Jerusalem Post reported two weeks ago that the execution of wrestler Mehdi Ali Hosseini was imminent. He is from Andimeshk in the province of Khuzestan and was arrested in 2015 and charged with premeditated murder, supposedly committed during a group fight. It is unclear whether the Islamic Republic authorities forced Hosseini to confess to a crime he did not commit. Mariam Memarsadeghi, an Iranian-American expert on human rights, told the Post that the “[Iranian regime’s Supreme Leader Ali] Khamenei and his henchmen want to numb everyone to their repression. By executing more and more in spite of global outrage, they hope to show the Iranian people and the Free World that they are powerless.” (JPost / VFI News)
The suggestions, opinions and scripture references made by VFI writers and editors are based on the best information received.
Blessings from Jerusalem,
Barry Segal with the Editorial Staff