First Read For July 26


Hamas remains on EU terrorism list

The European Union’s top court ruled yesterday that Palestinian Islamist movement Hamas should remain on the EU terrorism blacklist, the Jerusalem Post reports.  In referring the case back to a lower court, judges at the European Court of Justice (ECJ) overruled the General Court’s 2014 decision view that the 28-nation bloc had insufficient evidence to maintain asset freezes and travel bans on Hamas..

The latest ruling keeps various Hamas funds frozen, limits Hamas from openly doing business in the EU and limits the mobility of Hamas-affiliated persons.

Most Israelis opposes metal detectors’ removal

Three-fourths of Israelis believe that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu surrendered to pressure when his security cabinet decided to remove metal detectors from the Temple Mount, the Jerusalem Post reports. The paper cites a public opinion poll broadcast yesterday on Channel 2 News.

When asked whether the metal detectors should have been placed on the Mount in the first place, 68% said yes, 23% no, and 9% said they did not know.

The poll of 502 Israelis representing a statistical sample of the adult Israeli population, found that 77% called the decision a surrender, 17% said it was not and 9% said they did not know. When asked whether the metal detectors should have been placed on the Mount in the first place, 68% said yes, 23% no, and 9% said they did not know.

Chanukah comes early at scouting Jamboree

A Guinness World Record for the most dreidels spinning at one time was set this week at the Boy Scouts of America’s 2017 National Jamboree.

JTA reports that some 820 dreidels spun simultaneously for ten seconds Sunday at the Summit Bechtel Family Scout Reserve in Glen Jean, West Virginia, breaking the mark of 754, which was set in Tel Aviv in 2014.

The event was sponsored by the National Jewish Committee on Scouting, which provided the dreidels and cardboard spinning boards to participating scouts.

Judge: Cross at Veterans memorial can remain

A federal judge has put to rest a decades-long legal battle over the display of a 43-foot-tall Latin cross that will remain at the Mt. Soledad Veterans Memorial in San Diego, according to Courthouse News. In what U.S. District Judge John D. Bates called a “last gasp,”

The Jewish War Veterans organization, represented by the American Civil Liberties Union, sued the federal government in 2006, challenging the display of the 43-foot cross on federally owned land. A federal judge ruled in 2008 that the cross could remain and tossed out the underlying lawsuit, and in 2011, the Ninth Circuit reversed the 2008 district court ruling and found that the cross was unconstitutional.

Bates in his decision called the issue “plainly and completely over.”

Israel may compensate family of slain Jordanian assailant

Israel will reportedly pay compensation to the family of a Jordanian man who was on Sunday was shot dead in Amman by an Israeli embassy guard who was trying to defend himself during a stabbing attack, the Times of Israel reports. It wasn’t immediately clear what sum Israel will pay to the family.

The stabber was also killed by the guard, who suffered minor injuries in the incident. The Sunday evening stabbing and shooting caused a serious diplomatic crisis, as Jordanian authorities demanded to question the guard while Israel refused to hand him over, citing his diplomatic immunity.

Israel’s Foreign Ministry said the Israeli guard, identified only by his first name, Ziv, was stabbed by 17-year-old Mohammed Jawawdeh, who was in an embassy residence installing a bedroom set.

Ziv opened fire on Jawawdeh, killing him and a second man, Bashar Hamarneh, at the site, in what the ministry said was self-defense.

German-Jewish athlete barred from ’36 Olympics dies at 103

Margaret Bergmann-Lambert, a world-class high jumper from Germany who was barred from participating in the 1936 Berlin Olympics because she came from a Jewish family, died yesterday at her home in Queens at 103, Deutsche Welle reports,

Born as Gretel Bergmann in the southern German town of Laupheim, she became an outstanding athlete, competing not only in the high jump, but also the discus and shot put. At 16, she finished second in ta regional high jump competition, but because of her Jewish background was never given the opportunity to compete at the national championships. After the Nazis came to power in 1933, she was kicked out of her sport club, and her parents sent her to England, where she participated in the British athletics championships.

Two weeks before the 1936 Summer Games, she was informed by German sports authorities that she had not been included on the German squad due to “under-performance,” and the authorities deleted her entry from the record book.

In 2004 HBO made a documentary about her story, entitled “Hitler’s Pawn.” The 2009 German film “Berlin 36” is also based on her story.

In 2009, the German Athletics Federation restored the record that she had set at that meet in Stuttgart prior to the 1936 Games.