World news

Conference cancelled because of Israeli guest

By Jennifer Lipman, July 26, 2010

A French literary conference has been cancelled after pro-Palestinian activists refused to share a platform with an Israeli author who is a Holocaust survivor.

Novelist Esther Orner, 73, was set to appear at the March 2011 event hosted by the University of Provence.

But an anonymous group of Egyptian and Palestinian writers refused to take part in dialogue with an Israeli, prompting Ms Orner to speak out in the French media.

The controversy led university president Jean-Paul Caverni to cancel the entire conference.

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Mark Zuckerberg to star in Simpsons

By Jennifer Lipman, July 26, 2010

The creator of Facebook is to be immortalised as a cartoon character.

Mark Zuckerberg, who developed the social networking site as a teenager in his Harvard dorm room, is to be a guest star on The Simpsons.

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Oliver Stone: Jews dominate the media

By Jennifer Lipman, July 26, 2010

The Holocaust continues to be focused on because of “the Jewish domination of the media”, according to filmmaker Oliver Stone.

The director of Platoon, Nixon and Wall Street told an interviewer of his views on America’s “major” Jewish lobby, Hitler’s record and Iran.

He said: “They are hard workers. They stay on top of every comment, the most powerful lobby in Washington.

“Israel has f----- up United States foreign policy for years"

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Brittany & husband: same cause of death

By Jennifer Lipman, July 23, 2010

Jewish screenwriter Simon Monjack reportedly died of the same conditions that caused the death of his wife, Hollywood actress Brittany Murphy.

The results of an autopsy have revealed that Mr Monjack, found dead in his California home in May, died from acute pneumonia and severe anemia.

A Los Angeles coroner said his death was “just like Brittany” and ruled out a rumoured drug overdose.

Born in North London, Mr Monjack was best known for writing the screenplay for the 2006 Andy Warhol biopic Factory Girl, which starred Sienna Miller.

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Natalie Portman film to open Venice festival

By Jennifer Lipman, July 23, 2010

A film starring Israeli-born actress Natalie Portman as a top ballerina has been selected to open this year's Venice Film Festival in September.

Ms Portman plays the lead in “Black Swan”, a psychological thriller directed by Jewish filmmaker Darren Aronofsky.

It will be the third consecutive film by Mr Aronofsky premiering at the Venice event, following The Fountain and The Wrestler, which won the festival's Golden Lion prize in 2008.

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87 states square up against antisemitism

By Jennifer Lipman, July 22, 2010

An international agreement on fighting antisemitism has been signed by 87 states at a ceremony in Israel.

Israel’s deputy Foreign Minister Daniel Ayalon welcomed the document as a boost for the global fight against Holocaust denial and the delegitimisation of Israel.

The cooperation understanding, signed in Jerusalem, has been agreed between the ODIHR (Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights) and the ITF (Task Force for International Cooperation on Holocaust Education, Remembrance, and Research).

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International Israel support initiative launched

By Leon Symons, July 22, 2010

An unprecedented show of support for Israel has come from a group of almost entirely non-Jewish European and American politicians, statesmen and women and theologians.

Led by former Spanish prime minister José Maria Aznar, they have formed the Friends of Israel Initiative, to oppose the rising tide of criticism and delegitimisation that has questioned Israel's right to exist and act in self-defence.

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Australian politicians try to woo Jews

By Dan Goldberg, July 22, 2010

Just two days after PM Julia Gillard called a snap federal election for August 21, opposition leader Tony Abbott made the first move to woo Jewish voters.

The Liberal leader told the Australia Israel Chamber of Commerce in Melbourne that the Labour government weakened Australia's longstanding bipartisan support for the Jewish state.

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Grocery stores boycott Israel

July 22, 2010

Two grocery stores in Rachel Corrie's hometown will boycott Israeli goods.

The Olympia Co-Op in Washington state said it will no longer carry Israeli products for "moral" reasons.

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US shuls get 'terror grant'

July 22, 2010

More than 25 synagogues in the New York area will receive up to $75,000 each as part of a $6 million anti-terror grant from the US Department of Homeland Security.

The funds must be put towards shul security.

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