Shin Bet Manhandled French Prime Minister in Grand Synagogue, Bibi Insulted French Jewish Leadership
Maariv today published an astonishing story. Anyone reading this blog is used to the brutishness of the Shin Bet. But usually it’s reserved for Palestinians, Arab journalists, and air travelers with Arab “racial” profiles. We would never expect it to be meted out to the elected leader of a country that is an Israeli ally.
On the day of the memorial service for those slain in the kosher supermarket attack, Prime Minister Manuel Valls sought to take his seat in the synagogue with the President, Francois Hollande and Israel’s leader, Bibi Netanyahu. As he approached his seat, his path was blocked by a Shin Bet agent who refused to allow him to pass until Netanyahu had taken his own seat. According to Valls, the agent grabbed his arm and forced him to wait until the Israeli had seated himself.
Valls shouted at him in French and English:
You don’t make the rules here. You provide security for the prime minister of Israel, that is all.
The Israeli ambassador to France apologized for the encounter. There can be no doubt that this was a deliberate affront to France’s political leadership. Hollande and Valls made clear during Netanyahu visit that he wasn’t wanted in the country. Bibi isn’t one to suffer insults gladly. So either he, his official lackeys, or the Shin Bet itself took it upon itself to take Valls down a peg or two. It seems to me this is an extremely dangerous game. It also seems to me this is a game played by very desperate people who share no concern for the overall long term interests of their country. But who are rather motivated by personal needs and emotions.
In a separate encounter, a leader of the French Jewish community recounted a meeting Netanyahu held with the communal leadership. Those attending were “deeply insulted” by the prime minister’s comparison of their behavior to those of the Spanish Jews in 1492 “who felt good in Spain but who erred” in not leaving when they had the chance.
You may recall that Netanyahu’s father, Ben Zion, was a scholar of medieval Spanish Jewry. Maariv notes that in the meeting Bibi summoned his father’s authority to support the insult he offered the French leadership. I’ve said here before that Bibi has none of the supposed erudition of his father regarding Jewish history. Where would he have had Spanish Jews go? To the Holy Land? As it was, Spanish Jews found refuge in many places from Amsterdam to Brazil to New Amsterdam. But to say that in the 15th century, Spanish Jewry should’ve known that the were doomed if they remained in Spain, seems the height of foolishness.
If we draw the historical analogy further, Bibi seems to be saying that France is headed for the same sort of religious takeover that Catholics engineered in 15th century Spain. Except that this time, it will be Islamists taking over. Further, Bibi infers that the Islamist hordes who do take over France will expel all French Jews after they do. Therefore, they should escape now to Israel, their homeland, while there’s still time. I think most reasonable people can see how ludicrous this logic is. It’s the product of a distorted view of reality induced by the thinking that characterized Ben Zion Netanyahu, Zeev Jabotinsky’s personal secretary.
Netanyahu’s tongue-lashing is little different (in fact it’s pretty much the same) as blaming Polish and Russian Jews for not foreseeing Hitler’s rise and the Holocaust, and escaping while they still had time. This is a shameful act of blaming the victims. It’s easy to read history with 20/20 hindsight, but much harder when you are in the middle of such great tragedy. As someone who’s known Holocaust survivors and written an oral history of an Auschwitz survivor, I make it a point never to judge the actions of those facing such life and death dilemmas. It takes a cold, cruel, heartless man to do so. And Bibi Netanyahu is just such a one.
Stories like this presage a hardening of the world’s attitude toward Israel. When asked politely to stay home, Netanyahu defied his French hosts. What country in the world will want to welcome him after this? Now, an act of petty vengeance by a Shin Bet goon has strengthened the process of isolation represented by BDS.
Bibi had already been warned that defying Hollande’s wish would sour bi-lateral relations for the rest of Bibi’s premiership. Now, Israel can expect a French vote in the UNSC in favor of Palestinian statehood.
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” As it was, Spanish Jews found refuge in many places from Amsterdam to Brazil to New Amsterdam ”
Jews, already victims of the Portuguese Inquisition,were expelled from Brazil in 1654.
Jewish refugees from than Brazil got a frosty reception upon their arrival in New Amsterdam. Governor Pieter Stuyvesant hated Jews.
@ Krausen: From 1492 till 1654 Spanish Jews found refuge in Brazil and New Amsterdam, just as I wrote. That 160 years in case you can’t count. As for New Amsterdam, Peter Stuyvesant didn’t remain leader of the community long. And there is still a Sephardic synagogue in Manhattan that dates from the earliest days of New Amsterdam. I guess the place turned out pretty hospitably for Sephardic & other Jews.
Your early timeline is incorrect. The first Jews to arrive in Brazil were ‘Conversos’, whose numbers would be absorbed into the Brazilian gentile population.
Only under Dutch rule in Recife, were Brazilian Jews free to practice their religion. When the Portugeuse re-conquered Recife, the Jews were expelled.
○ Were the Jews exceptional in New Amsterdam? No they were not.
It’s really amusing that you make a point and then link to something you wrote as proof. Your commentary cited 550 Jews arriving from Recife in 1654 whereas your link mentions the historically accepted number of 23 Jews arriving. Stuyvesant wanted them booted out but was prevented from doing so by the Dutch West India Company. Still, he made their lives so miserable that by 1664 when the Brits took over New Amsterdam only one Jew was documented as residing there.
@ Thaiguy85: Sorry, but you have it wrong as well. Shearith Israel was founded in 1654 by 23 Sephardic Jews. We have no way of knowing how many other Jews there were in New Amsterdam at that time. There could’ve been 23 or 550 or any number in between.
OK let’s try this again so as to perhaps clarify the confusion. In 1654, 23 Sephardic Jews, escaping the Portuguese inquisition, arrived in New Amsterdam from Recife. Shearith Israel claims to have been founded then but we know that the Torah brought by the 23 Jews was returned to Amsterdam in 1663 and by 1664 when the British conquered New Amsterdam, only one Jew was documented to be living there. Now, proscribed public worship was documented in 1682 but by 1695 there was a rented synagogue location on Beaver Street (near Wall Street). Then in 1704 that moved to a house on Mill Street. The first Synagogue built by the congregation was in 1730. Then they moved to Crosby Street in 1834, 19th Street in 1860 and finally to West 70th Street in 1897 where the Congregation is currently situated. OK that was long winded…
So what do Congregations do? Worship together yes, and care for their dead. As such they applied in 1655 for a plot of land for a cemetery. Stuyvesant refused until 1656 when a member of the fledgling community had passed away and needed to be buried.
My historical facts remain accurate. When the British took over and demanded from all residents of New Amsterdam to sign an oath of loyalty, only one Jewish name appeared in the list – Asser Levy – and his presence there predated that of the 23 refugees from Recife (he was one of two Jews that greeted their boat). I don’t know where that 550 number cited by Oui comes from.
I linked specifically for the correspondence between Peter Stuyvesant and the Dutch Masters of the WIC in Amsterdam for their reply dated April 26, 1655. The source of the letters:
Paul R. Mendes-Flohr and Jehuda Reinharz, eds., The Jew in the Modern World: A Documentary History (Oxford University Press, 1980).
The Jews were already present in the Dutch colony of New Amsterdam and if you’d research a little further were also present on the ship which carried Maurice of Nassau to Brazil. Part of the Jews were ‘conversos’ and others were practising Jews. Jews were in the forefront in the expefitions to the Americas, see also the voyage of Simon de Bolivar, unless you consider ‘conversos’ as non-Jews.
“The Dutch in New Holland continued to allow religious freedom, as in The Netherlands. As a result of this policy, many Portuguese conversos who lived in the Portuguese controlled areas of Brazil moved to New Holland and dropped their forced conversion to become full-fledged Jews once again. One Dutch survey during those years listed the New Holland population as 12,703. Of these, 2,890 were white and half of them were said to be Jews in the city of Recife.”
I wrote the posts @BooMan especially to be linked as it provides multiple sources. At Tikun Olam such a comment gets moderated and the delay can mount to 12 hours. See post below.
The letters of correspondence are here. No figures provided as to the Jewish population of New Amsterdam.
Total population of New Amsterdam in the 1650’s can only be estimated.
Fort Nieuw Amsterdam
W.E. De Riemer in his 1905 book on the De Riemer Family
In 1657 when “Burgher Rights” were accorded to the people, Steenwyck was classed as Great Burgher by the payment of 70 guilders into the public treasury. Two years before this  he had been taxed one hundred guilders for strenghtening the fortifications of the city, en was made “Ensign.” (De Heer Allard Anthony presented 100 guilders and Dominies Megapolensis and Drisius each presented 50 guilders. Paulding’s New Amsterdam, p. 87.)
It becomes clear, through litigation Asser Levy succeeded to gain “Burgher Rights” (citizenship) as a Jew,
the first person to do so. Would the British oath of loyalty only apply to persons of the Dutch colony with “Burgher Rights?” That may explain why Asser Levy was the single Jew listed in 1664.
○ Map of Manhatten c 1639
In three months time, between 16 to 20 ships sailed from Recife, Brazil to Amsterdam, Holland. The ship with 23 Jews fell in the hands of pirates in the Caribbean and diverted to New Amsterdam.
○ Joods Museum – Amsterdam
○ Alphabetical list and Jewish owners with property in Dutch Brazil 1634-1654 [pdf]
Stuyvesant was turned out by Great Britain in 1680, and from a contemporaneous British census, only one Jew remained in New Amsterdam.
” there is still a Sephardic synagogue in Manhattan that dates from the earliest days of New Amsterdam ”
Public worship for Jews was proscribed until the 1690’s. By then, New Amsterdam was New York.
Congregation Shearith Israel, the Portuguese & Sephardic Congregation goes back to 1654. If the claim of your website was correct, there could have been no such synagogue established. Sorry buddy.
“Stuyvesant’s recalcitrance and the extreme cold of New Amsterdam’s winters led the Sephardic Jews to depart for Amsterdam, London, or the Caribbean, where relatives were better established. By 1663, the Torah scroll had been returned to Amsterdam.”
“The earliest mention of Jewish worship dates to 1682, but public worship was proscribed until a decade later.”
What are you sorry about?
@ Krausen: YOur source is wrong. The Wikipedia article to which I linked shows Shearith Israel began in 1654 as I said. I lived in NYC for a long time & know this is true. The synagogue’s own website confirms this:
I am sorry that you quote sources which are wrong.
Admittedly, this is a stretch, but is it possible that protocol dictates that a visiting Head of State be seated before a French Prime Minister?
Yeah, it was also because of protocol that Bibi pushed French Minister of Ecology, Fleur Pellerin, when they were waiting for the bus bringing them to the demonstration on Sunday (images on the net), that was before he pushed his way up the front row during the marching. Nah, the behaviour of the Shin Bet agent and Bibi himself are just a perfect symbol of Israel in general.
After 5 minutes search on google I came empty handed. Can you please provide a link to that ‘push’. Thanks.
It took me 10 sec.
So Netanyahu (the Israeli left is having fun with images of him elbowing his way to the front of the Je Suis Charlie march, his bodyguards pushing aside French culture minister Fleur Pellerin so Netanyahu could get on the dignitary bus before her) is making a strenuous effort to conflate them.
I saw that video several time. Nobody mentions she was a minister. (And neither do your links 🙁 )
What really amazes me is the word Bibi or Netanyahu were probably mentioned on Tikun Olan a lot more the either Radical, Extreme, Terror or Fundamentalism combined.
If you had googled her name that I gave you, you didn’t need to know she was a Minister but wiki could confirm that. I guess Bibi didn’t know it either, it was just some female that should be pushed aside. Fortunately it wasn’t Najat Vallaud-Belkacem, Minister of Education, and an Arab….
Different incident. Norm Finkelstein wrote about this bus event. Netanyahu got left behind. He was stuck in that crowd and nervous, and feeling exposed, looking all around and up at the buildings. He was could have been remembering Rabin’s execution–that he incited.
Netanyahu visits Paris synagogue, crowd breaks into national anthem La Marseillaise.
Footage of Bibi pushing aside the Malian president, Ibrahim Boubacar Keitar, in order to insert himself in the front row. Perhaps the funniest part is when the Malian leader leaps away from Bibi’s touch as though the latter had a communicable disease.
Bibi is not a Head Of State, he is a Prime Minister.
The Head Of State for the state of Israel is the President of Israel, who is Reuvan Rivlin.
So, yeah, much too much of a stretch.
Were the Jews exceptional in New Amsterdam? No they were not.
Dutch (in)tolerance in colony of New Amsterdam
The Dutch had a longstanding tradition of religious toleration (they had supported the Pilgrims back in 1620), so Long Island was home to many refugees from Puritan Massachusetts where no form of dissent was tolerated.
The other three (Sarah Gibbons, Richard Doudney, and Robert Hodgson) went to Long Island, and were warmly received. However Hodgson stayed on after the others left for Rhode Island, and was suddenly arrested, sent to New Amsterdam, imprisoned, and very badly treated. He was eventually released without charge and sent to Rhode Island, after pressure on Governor Stuyvesant from many Dutch colonists.
There were soon several Quaker groups on Long Island. They experienced some persecution, notably fines, despite the Dutch principle of religious tolerance. It seems that the pressure from the large Massachusetts colony to the north was too much for the Governor to resist. This did not prevent several further Quaker missionaries from visiting, or deter the new Quakers from their faith. On the contrary, so many Dutch colonists objected to any persecution that in 1663 the colony proclaimed a principle of complete religious toleration. ‘The consciences of men should remain free and unshackled’.
○ 1657 Flushing Remonstrance urged tolerance, foresaw modern religious rights
Fleeing Brazil, 550 Jews arrived in New Amsterdam without identification papers which led to harsh anti-semitic remarks by Peter Stuyvesant en requested the Dutch West India Company not to permit this group of immigrants the same rights as in Amsterdam, Holland. The company rescinded the request as large shares of the Company were in the hands on influential Jews in Holland who had fled Portugal.
○ Portugese Synagoge in Amsterdam – 1672
This beautiful house of worship symbolizes the ties of Spanish and Portuguese Jews with Amsterdam, Holland. Unfortunately, the Dutch do not have that same tolerance today for the immigrants as a whole and Muslims in particular. But neither does Israel display any form of tolerance expected by a civilization.
At the end of the sixteenth century Jews of Spanish-Portuguese origin (known as Sephardim) started to arrive in Amsterdam, a thriving city of trade. Ever since the Jews in Spain and Portugal were expelled and forced to convert to Catholicism in 1492 and 1497, respectively, and after the Inquisition began, targeting Jews and those referred to as new Christians, living safely become virtually impossible for Jews in these countries.
Especially the elite among the Jewish population with international contacts fled the Iberian Peninsula. They sought refuge in Italy, Morocco, the Ottoman Empire, the South of France and the Southern Netherlands, establishing Jewish communities there or joining existing ones. From the late sixteenth century Amsterdam became a new sanctuary as well, where outsiders could settle in peace.
○ The Edict of Expulsion of the Jews – 1492
Concerning Prime Minister Emmanuel Valls, I feel no pity. He’s (was ?) one of the most pro-Israel in the actual government. He used to be ‘pro-Palestinian’, Evry, where he was Mayor is twinned with the refugee camp of Khan Younis in Gaza and he’s hold very strong speeches advocating Palestinians rights. Then he remarried … a well-know musician of Jewish origin.
He’s known for these words (pronounced on a Jewish radio Judaica) “Through my wife I will be eternally linked to the Jewish community and to Israel” (on the net), something unheard of in France, he’s also been not only a frequent visitor at the local AIPAC’s dinner parties, but also many other Zionist lobby events where a Prime Minister (and before that Minister of Interior has nothing to do).
Personally, I was shocked to hear the Israeli anthem in the Grande Synagogue and to see people waving the Israeli flag within the synagogue. Afterwards though, the Jewish community started singing the French national anthem.
Actually, most Jews expelled in 1492 found refuge in Islamic countries, particularly the Ottoman Empire and Morocco.
Another revenge strike by Bibi in Syria killing 5 Hezbollah commander and Iranian fighters near Qunatra on Golan Heights. First reports …
Jihad Mughniyeh, Hezbollah’s commander of the Syrian Golan sector and the son of Lebanese terrorist Imad Mughniyah, was killed. Four other Hezbollah fighters were killed in the helicopter strike, among them field commander Mohammad Issa, who goes by the nom de guerre “Abu Issa,” and the Iranian Commander in the Syrian Golan Heights Abu Ali al-Tabtabai, also known as “Abu Ali Reza,” according to Al Arabiya, as well as other Lebanese media.
As predicted recently, excellent cooperation for terror organization Jablat al-Nusra in the area of the deadly attack by the IAF.
Zero proof of cooperation between Israel and al Nusra.
I’m quite certain that al Nusra would have preferred killing or capturing these Iranian and Hezbollah big wigs and that Israel would have preferred if someone else did the killings.
Or to put it another way, Oui is projecting straight into fantasy land.
Read here and here.
Your two elliptical links to Tikkun Olam do not serve as proofs that Israel has cooperated with al Nusra in this targeted assassination.
@ krausen: Links can’t be “elliptical,” by definition. But your logic is not just elliptical, it’s downright non-existent. Since you haven’t read the blog posts to which he linked, I can fill you in (since you’re so lazy) that numberous MSM sources have documented Israel collaboration with Al Nusra. And I linked to them in my posts. Among them: FoxNews and ViceNews. All these reports are based on eye witness accounts where the reporters went into the field to document the connection. Not to mention the UN peacekeeper report which documents Israeli-Al Nusra collaboration.
Those are facts. What you write is opinion: slanted, skewed, baseless opinion. Worth about as much as you are–which is almost nothing. So call my work “elliptical” again and I’ll throw you out–and that won’t be elliptical. It’ll be straight and to-the-point.
Maj.-Gen.(res.) Yoav Galant, hinted that the timing of an IAF attack on Hezbollah fighters was motivated by the Israeli elections. See previous events …
Are politicians during election season and before they can learn any of the details regarded as reliable source?
@ Oui: Watch: when Bibi has a bad week as he did this past one, there is invariably a counter-terror operation or assault on Gaza. Works like clock-work.
@Richard – “when Bibi has a bad week” – Bad week b/c of what?
* The fact the French president decided to politicize the murders of Jew by bundling Bibi and Abbas?
* The fact the march was chaos but everyone spoke of him? (it was impressive considering it was organized in just a few days)
* The fact he allowed some people to put the light on him instead of the Muslim extremists who committed the crime?
* The fact Erdoğan condemned him while Davutoğlu joined the march?
Regardless, Tick Tack;Tick Tack;Tick Tack though drones usually sounds like ZzZzZzZzZzZz.
After the deliberate and childish humiliation of the Turkish ambassador, a few years ago, Time reminded its readers of Kissinger’s dictum that Israel has no foreign policy only domestic politics – and, one should add, domestic politics of the most petty kind.
“When asked politely to stay home, Netanyahu defied his French hosts. What country in the world will want to welcome him after this?”
Oh, Canada (at least until the next election) and Australia, for two. Sadly.
From two days ago, Netanyahu welcomes Japanese counterpart Abe to Israel.
Ironic, given that FRENCH minister Valls is an ardent zionist and has stated on radio that he is forever tied (or was it chained..) to Israel and declared, in a speech , antizionism as antisemitism..
The treatment of P.M. Vall, at the hands of Shin Bet is insulting. I didn’t see anything of this in the news. It is apparent, that no matter where, Netanyahu is or goes, there is no limit to his sense of entitlements or his vulgarity.
The loony tune clip od Netanyahu shimmying to the front is funny, and to see it on the Forward is interesting. I found the video of him waiting for the bus quite funny, too.
I read somewhere (sorry I have no link to confirm) that the line up had been pre-determined. I don’t think Netanyahu was included in the front row, though Abbas was. However, that would have to be confirmed.
I watched the clip about the Marseillaise breaking out in the synagogue. Very interesting. I had not seen it, either. Thanks for sharing.
Well, as I remember it, both Netanyahu and Abbas were in the 2nd row; N pushed himself to the front row but A didn’t. N also kept his hand free to wave when they were all expected to link hands. Both the procession and bus incidents were funny and sad. I don’t think anyone watching appreciated N’s aggressive behavior.
Obviously you didn’t look at all.