UK news

Cambridge debater barred

November 4, 2010

A Jewish Cambridge University student has been banned from its Union debating society after an encounter with Lauren Booth - the notorious presenter on Iranian Press TV and ardent pro-Palestinian campaigner.

Gabriel Latner, a second-year lawyer, joined her as a fellow proposer of the motion that Israel is a rogue state - which he subverted by tackling it from a pro-Israel point of view.

(Students who apply to speak in debates are randomly selected by the union organisers.)

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Ed Miliband: Hamas, Ken Livingstone and Jewish values

By Martin Bright, November 4, 2010

Ed Miliband’s Jewish intellectual heritage could not be more impeccable. His father, Ralph Miliband remains a colossus of the British left, who lies buried in Highgate cemetery within sight of Karl Marx himself.

His mother Marion Kozak, is a feminist thinker and human rights activist of considerable renown. Both parents were Polish Jews who came to Britain as refugees from fascism.

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Lord Sugar gives Apprentice's Alex Epstein 'another chance'

By Jennifer Lipman, November 3, 2010

Jewish Apprentice contestant Alex Epstein has lived to fight another day - just.

Despite disagreements with Apollo team leader Paloma, the former King David pupil escaped being fired by Lord Sugar.

In a task which involved selling designer clothing to shoppers in Manchester’s Trafford Centre, he was put in charge of choosing the location for a promotional area. He chose an area some distance from the shop, causing friction with the rest of his team.

Karren Brady told him: “Unfortunately it wasn’t the best location.”

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EDL men charged with Israel demo offences

By Jessica Elgot, November 3, 2010

Three EDL members charged with affray and public order offences during a “Tea Party” rabbi’s speech at Speakers Corner have had their case sent to Crown Court.

Shortly after their demonstration on Sunday outside the Israeli Embassy in Kensington, EDL supporters made their way to Hyde Park where Rabbi Nachum Shifren, the so-called "surfing rabbi" from California, gave a short speech.

The rabbi had earlier called Muslims “dogs” and told the EDL “We will never surrender to the sword of Islam."

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Kaminski invited on Jewish tour of Britain

By Leon Symons, November 3, 2010

Controversial Polish right-wing politician Michal Kaminski has been invited to visit Britain to meet community leaders and talk to the Anglo-Jewish community.

Mr Kaminski has been invited to Mill Hill United Synagogue in north west London by its minister Rabbi Yitzchak Schochet, and is likely to visit at least one other Orthodox synagogue. It is also likely that he will meet members of the Charedi community, some of whom were invited to visit Jewish historical sites by the Polish Foreign Ministry last month.

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Hague to sign Israel-Britain film deal

By Jennifer Lipman, November 2, 2010

William Hague is to sign a groundbreaking agreement cementing ties between the British and Israeli film industries.

The Foreign Secretary, who is in Israel for a two-day trip, is expected to sign the co-production deal tomorrow.

It will give Israeli film-makers the chance to benefit from the facilities and reputation of the British film industry and open up new channels for both countries’ film industries.

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Oxfam works in Israel to ‘alter the balance’

By Jessica Elgot, November 2, 2010

Oxfam is to launch a new strategy to improve its image with Israel and British Jews, after concerns about pro-Palestinian bias within the organisation.

The charity has never actively publicised its work with Jewish Israelis. During Operation Cast Lead Oxfam released a statement saying Palestinians had “fewer rights than convicts”.

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Meridor cancels Bicom appearance over arrest fears

By Marcus Dysch, November 1, 2010

EXCLUSIVE: Israeli Deputy Prime Minister Dan Meridor has cancelled an appearance at a London fundraising dinner over fears he could be arrested under universal jurisdiction legislation.

It is believed the Israeli Justice Ministry warned Mr Meridor that a warrant for his arrest may be issued if he entered Britain.

He was due to speak at the Bicom dinner tonight. He was a replacement for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who cancelled last week due to the delicate state of the peace negotiations.

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Reform leader Bayfield to retire early

By Simon Rocker, November 1, 2010

Rabbi Tony Bayfield, the head of the Movement for Reform Judaism, is to step down six months earlier than expected at the beginning of January.

The leader of the movement since 1995, he had been due to retire at the end of June shortly before his 65th birthday, with executive director Rabbi Shoshana Boyd-Gelfand becoming chief executive - and the first female rabbi to be professional head of a British synagogue body.

But Rabbi Bayfield told members of the Reform council yesterday that the handover had gone so smoothly that he felt able to leave earlier.

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'Scary' Katie Waissel clings on to X Factor place

By Katie Taylor, November 1, 2010

It was another tense week of X Factor for Jewish hopeful Katie Waissel, as she had to sing for survival for a second time this series.

She failed to win over fans after her rendition of Ella Fitzgerald’s Bewitched on Saturday night’s Halloween themed show.

Her witch outfit, with large back-combed hair and white false eyelashes, was unpopular. Dannii Minogue told her: “The makeup was a little bit scary tonight.

“It was distracting from your singing.”

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