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Honoring corona victims, fighting anti-Semitic conspiracy theories – Jewish World

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Honoring corona victims, fighting anti-Semitic conspiracy theories - Jewish World

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Jewish communities across Europe have been severely affected by the Corona epidemic and the logistical and organizational challenges created by the draconian lockdown procedures.

Heads of communities and rabbis who took part in the event last night gave testimony in a virtual European remembrance service initiated by Rabbi Menachem Margolin, chairman of the European Jewish Association and chair of the Rabbinical center of Europe.

Many in tears recounted being unable to attend or provide a proper Jewish funeral for the victims of the virus as well as having to give up mourning practices such as sitting shiva and holding memorial events for the perished.

Rabbi Margolin said at the opening of the moving event that “European Jews still have to face a double burden – the heavy loss of those who perished, many of whom have not been properly honored – on the one hand, and the continued anti-Semitic conspiracies as if it were the Jews who spread the virus on the other.

‘Budget constraints have also reduced the security of the military and police forces for Jewish synagogues and institutions. “

Rabbi Margolin emphasized that he initiated the virtual event to allow Jewish communities to honor the victims, but no less important – to convey a vital message of unity and mutual support and solidarity, “That the memory and good deeds of the deceased will encourage all communities to unite and ensure the continuity of Jewish life in Europe, and also prove to the anti-Semites that “the people of Israel are alive”.

Chief Rabbis of Israel, Rabbi Israel David Lowe and Rishon Lezion, Rabbi Yitzchak Yosef who honored the virtual event by their presence, strengthened the heads of European congregations and rabbis and prayed that the communities would find solace in prayer and study of the Torah and enhance the memory of those who perished throughout the Jewish life.

Diaspora Minister MK Omar Yankelevich noted that just as Diaspora Jewry always stands to the right of Israel, so too did these State of Israel during these difficult months to assist as much as it could to the Jewish communities in Europe. The virus requires us all to implement in practice the imperative of all of us to each other: to join forces and to cooperate with the aim of securing the future of the entire Jewish people – in Israel and in the Diaspora, the Minister reported on the formulation of a strategic plan to strengthen Israel-Diaspora ties and to enhance Jewish education in the communities.

KKL-JNF chairman Danny Atar acceded to the request of the chairman of the European Jewish Organizations Association, declaring that the KKL-JNF would be planted in the forest of Europe, a tree in memory of each of the Jewish victims of the Corona epidemic in various communities.

The CEO of the Rabbinical Centre of Europe Rabbi Arie Goldberg opened the event chapters from the Psalms and immediately thereafter, there was a live broadcast fof a prayer service from the Great Synagogue in Paris dedicated to Jewish victims of the virus.

The president of the French Consistoire, the official organization of French Jews, Joel Mergui and Paris’s Chief Rabbi Michel Guggenheim noted that the Jewish community in France paid a very high price during the epidemic. “

Tonight, we all remember our loved ones who are no longer with us, and know that despite the terrible tragedy and despite the day-to-day difficulties, we must continue to live in solidarity and support each other. The virus has restored us to the sanctity of life.”

Rome Jewish President, Ruth Dureghello and President of Milan Jewish Community, Milo Sabani told of the terrible tragedies experienced by Jewish communities in Italy and the loss of many – including the young. The virus has transformed our lives and every day we have lost community members – young and old alike.

Many community members did sacred work, but in some cases the funeral could not be held and the grief was not complete.

The community leaders in Italy noted that one of the highlights during the horrible period was the cohesion within the community and aid offered by Jewish communities from other countries such as the European Jewish Association, the Jewish Agency and the Ministry of diaspora affairs in Israel. The strict measures that led to the protection of the elderly in the community nursing home was proven and all 100 tenants survived the period, they noted.

Madrid Jewish Vice President Andy Argas and Barcelona Jewish Community President Raymond Forado also spoke about life in the shadow of the epidemic, stating “The most important lesson we learned from the epidemic is the importance of the connections and mutual engagement among all Jewish communities in Spain, Europe, Israel and the world. This experience taught us day after day that we are a special people, each of whom must now say “I am” and do all he can to restore the community, increase educational activity and show the youth of the community the hope of a more cohesive future.
Deputy President of the Council of Jewish Communities in Germany, Abraham Lerer noted that the proportion of Jews who perished in the epidemic is greater than the proportion of Jews in the population they live in, and that this statistic is being used as widespread antisemitic propaganda claiming that Jews are the spreaders of the disease.

Chief Executive of the United Kingdom Synagogue, Rabbi Avi Lazarus noted that “502 of the 40,000 people who died in Britain were Jews, not just numbers people, each of them a world full of Jewish educators, community leaders and young people who are already missing, a notable and heavy absence from Jewish life in Britain “

Brussels President of the Jewish Community, Philip Markowitz and President of the Antwerp Jewish Organizations, Regina Sluzny, both noted that solidarity and aid in Belgium were evident not only within the Jewish communities but also among the Jews and their non-Jewish neighbours. The virus did not only affect the Jews but the inhabitants of the entire world. We must make sure that the plague does not hurt our solidarity as a people. We must stand with our community members to ensure a better world for our children and for the memory of our friends who are no longer with us. “



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Sanders and Schumer call on McConnell to hold hearings to fight election conspiracy theories – KTVZ

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Sanders and Schumer call on McConnell to hold hearings to fight election conspiracy theories - KTVZ

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Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer of New York are calling on Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to create a new bipartisan committee focused on election integrity and schedule hearings to reassure Americans over a process President Donald Trump has repeatedly sought to undermine.

There is growing anxiety among Democrats, and some Republicans, that Trump will not only continue to sow doubt over the legitimacy of the coming election but throw the subsequent count into chaos by declaring victory before all the votes can be tallied, including the millions that will arrive by mail.

In a letter to McConnell, Sanders and Schumer quote back the Kentucky senator’s own words, in which he attested to the reliability of mail-in voting by citing its successes in Oregon, Washington and Colorado, which have been using the system for years.

Trump has repeatedly questioned the validity of mail-in voting, promoted conspiracy theories questioning election security, called on supporters to act as unsanctioned “poll watchers,” and suggested that the absence of a clear result by the evening of November 3 would in some way cast doubt on the eventual outcome. Key allies in powerful positions, like Attorney General Bill Barr, have followed suit. Barr has persisted in puffing up a debunked claim that ballots received by mail would somehow strip the sender of their privacy — ignoring well-established safeguards.

By escalating the matter now, Sanders and Schumer are responding to growing concern, in partisan and nonpartisan spaces, that Americans are not adequately prepared for the potential of a longer-than-usual wait for results or Trump’s willingness to short-circuit the democratic process if he smells defeat.

“Democrats and Republicans in Congress must come together to ensure that we have a free and fair election where every vote is cast and counted without intimidation,” Sanders told CNN, “where no one has to put his or her health in danger to cast a ballot, and where we have full confidence in the results.”

The proposed hearings would invite a cross-section of election officials from across the country to testify to the security and reliability of mail-in, early- and in-person voting — subjects on which Sanders and Schumer, again, referenced McConnell’s own words.

“Despite the clear security of our vote-by-mail system, some have continued to undermine it with unsubstantiated claims of voter fraud,” they wrote. “As you have correctly said, people ‘can vote early, you can vote on Election Day, or you can drop it in the mail,’ and that voters should ‘not worry about your vote not counting.’”

The minority leader and Sanders, an independent who caucuses with the Democrats, also want more detailed discussion about the fraught hours, or days, after the polls close and a real-time watch of the election horse race potentially swings from one candidate to another.

“We know a number of states may well be counting ballots for a period of time after Election Day, and that those votes may be determinative in this election,” the senators wrote to McConnell. “To avoid disinformation, conspiracy theories, and suspicion about results, we must understand the likely timeline for this process.”

The letter goes on to reference the recent war games-style preparations conducted by a group called the Transition Integrity Project, a bipartisan gathering of operatives and academics that made headlines when some of the outcomes of their exercises — including “both street-level violence and political impasse” — were reported on in late July.

“A bipartisan group of experts and officials have studied multiple scenarios where the outcome of the election was not immediately known. Some of these scenarios resulted in unrest and even violence,” Sanders and Schumer wrote, suggesting the Senate should elevate similar discussions and familiarize the public with the uncertainties ahead. “We would like to hear from the most knowledgeable people in the country as to how we can do everything possible to make sure that the election and the period afterward is secure and peaceful.”

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HHS official sorry for conspiracy theory video

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HHS official sorry for conspiracy theory video

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HHS supported Caputo, with a statement that called him a critical, integral part of the presidents coronavirus response, leading on public messaging as Americans need public health information to defeat the COVID-19 pandemic.

There was no immediate statement from the White House.

Attempts to reach Caputo were unsuccessful.

On Capitol Hill, Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., called on Azar to fire Caputo, accusing the spokesman of trying to interfere with CDC reports to the medical and scientific community, as well as the public at large. And Senate Minority leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., called on Azar himself to resign, citing interference with the CDC as one example of what he termed the administration’s failures.

Officials at CDC have privately complained of recent efforts by political appointees at main HHS to try to edit or press for changes in the agency’s weekly MMWR publications, a go-to resource for public health professionals.

MMWR articles are technical, but they reveal telling details. One published earlier this year noted that while Trump’s travel restrictions dramatically reduced travel from China in February, nothing was being done at that time to restrict travel from Italy and Europe, where the coronavirus was spreading widely and rapidly. Analysis of virus samples from hard-hit New York in March suggested it was introduced there from Europe and other parts of the U.S., the CDC article reported.

Caputo is an unswerving Trump loyalist. His recent book, The Ukraine Hoax, claims the presidents phony impeachment was rooted in a vast conspiracy.

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unwinona:This is exactly what conspiracy theorists and anti-vaxxers have done with their HIV/AIDS…

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unwinona:This is exactly what conspiracy theorists and anti-vaxxers have done with their HIV/AIDS...

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My RSS Feedunwinona:

This is exactly what conspiracy theorists and anti-vaxxers have done with their HIV/AIDS and Polio narrative (among others), only we’re seeing it escalated to weeks and months instead of years or decades.

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