Archive for EU

VAT Taxes Sharpen EU Math Skills

No, the article isn’t about the bright side of VAT taxes, but I have turned over a new leaf. Whatever the news, I plan to find the cheery side. The VAT tax truly does help to keep math skills in shape

…In its discussion plan for the Digital Single Market unveiled last month, the European Commission noted that “the cost and complexity of having to deal with foreign tax rules are a major problem for [small companies],” and it pegged annual VAT compliance costs at €80 billion. Compliance is especially burdensome for smaller firms that must cope with up to 28 different VAT regimes in the European Union.

Consider a small firm in Italy selling a product to customers in France, Spain and Romania. Figuring out to whom to pay VAT is the first challenge. If the Italian firm sells only a few products outside Italy, it will pay VAT to Rome. But if its sales to another country exceed a threshold, the Italian company has to register to pay VAT in the destination country. That threshold is different everywhere. The Italian could sell products worth €100,000 in France each year before having to pay French VAT, but sales above €35,000 require payment of Spanish VAT, while in Romania the limit is 118,000 Romanian leu (€27,000).

Then a business needs to determine how much VAT to pay. Standard rates range from a low of 17% in Luxembourg to a high of 27% in Hungary, and each government exempts or reduces rates on different products. If the Italian company sells books, it will owe reduced rates of 4% in Spain and 9% in Romania. It will pay a reduced rate of 5.5% for books shipped to France—but starting next year, it will owe the full VAT of 20% on any books it sells in electronic form.

If a German machine-tool firm is lucky, its customer in Britain will be a company with its own UK VAT registration, which will pay VAT on the purchase. But if the German company stores parts on consignment in a British warehouse to be closer to the customer, who pays and how much will depend on how much “control” each party has over the merchandise in storage. And good luck figuring out your VAT liability if Company A in Portugal, Company B in Poland and Company C in Denmark engage in a quick-fire chain transaction.

More at the link, including this brilliant sentence: “One lesson is that governments are hungrier for revenue than they are for cross-border trade, which helps explain why e-commerce struggles in the EU.”

Terrific, isn’t it? If Belgium has 27 tons of mustaches to sell, and must pay a 17% tax on the 20% they sell to Germany, a 30% tax on the 15% they sell to Greece… how fast is the airplane flying to Reykjavik? And when will the days be longer in Iceland than they are in Freeport, Maine?

See, really makes you think!

– Aggie

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Cynical, Hypocritical Europe Recommends Sanctions On Israel

There has never been a better time to travel to Israel

The European Union has produced an explosive new report recommending sanctions against Israel over its construction policies and security measures in Jerusalem, the British daily Guardian reported on its website on Friday.

The leaked report, which comes just days after incumbent Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu handily won re-election, describes Israel’s capital as a city gripped by the worst “polarization and violence” since the Second Intifada of a decade ago.

The document, which is an amalgamation of recommendations prepared by European diplomats stationed in the region, accuses the Israeli government of exacerbating tensions in the city by accelerating construction in the contest eastern part of the capital.

According to the Guardian, the city has been beset by a “vicious cycle of violence … increasingly threatening the viability of the two-state solution.” The report goes on to say that Israel’s “systematic” construction of housing in “sensitive areas” has compounded the problem.

The EU report also takes Israel to task for what it describes as “heavy-handed policing and punitive measures” against Palestinians in the city, “including eviction and home demolitions by Israeli forces.”

More significantly, the document prescribes a series of measures aimed at curbing the distribution and sale of products manufactured beyond the 1967 Green Line.

Etc. I have personally boycotted Europe for a number of years. I call on all of Bloodthirstan to avoid EU products, services, and certainly travel. They are a vicious Jew-hating culture and they deserve to be shunned completely.

– Aggie

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Raze the Roof!

Who says Israel doesn’t dismantle illegal settlements?

Israeli authorities on Tuesday demolished an EU-funded illegal Arab settlement in Jerusalem, the European Union said, attacking the move.

“We condemn today’s demolition of temporary shelters funded by the European Union… as part of its response to the needs of the affected communities,” an EU statement said.

An expose by the Regavim NGO – first published last year by Arutz Sheva but later picked up by major UK outlet the Daily Mail in February of this year – revealed how EU funds have helped to pay for some 200 illegal buildings for Bedouin settlers in Judea and Samaria, just outside Jerusalem.

The EU funding, aimed at creating “facts on the ground”, was denounced by an Israeli group as “European colonialism.”

Regavim repeatedly lobbied the Israeli government to demolish the thousands of illegal Arab buildings scattered throughout Judea and Samaria.

The NGO monitors illegal Arab settlements throughout Israel. One of the group’s research drones was nearly downed in the same area on Monday by rock-throwing Arab settlers.

Oh yeah! We saw that footage yesterday. Way cool.

Check it out:

Europe calls that a settlement? It’s not even a camp. Barely a ghetto (how European).

It reminds me of the Obamavilles we saw early in his presidency. Let’s call them Junckervilles, after the President of the European Commission.

PS: Nice arm, kid. Heard from the Sox yet?

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Get To Know Your Neighbors

I think we know the neighbors, Bill. That’s why we need to leave…


Is he dense? Is he dumb? Does he dislike Jews? Would he ever tell blacks to get to know the neighbors?

He’s a typical leftist, attended the same school that the Obama girls attend in DC. Yuck.

– Aggie

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Are Jews Safer In Europe Or In Israel?

The title refers to a conversation that a lot of us are having. Is it better to be surrounded by armed police, the military and trained civilians.. or is it better not to see those people around you day after day? A friend is in favor of the latter (she just feels safer not having that stuff in her face) but I am very relaxed in Israel because of the presence of so many trained eyes – and protective weapons.

Contrast and compare:

The Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) announced Monday that it has arrested a Hamas cell in the West Bank city of Hebron which planned numerous terror attacks against Israeli targets, including a suicide bombing.

The Shin Bet, in conjunction with the IDF, arrested the eleven operatives in January. The central suspects in the terrorist activity are Sahaib Mamun Saltan, 20, from Hebron, and his cousin Salam Abbas Saltan, 28, a Hamas military operative who in recent years served a term in Israeli prison and was, on another occasion, held in administrative detention. During the arrests, explosive devices and weapons allegedly meant to be use in the terror attacks were confiscated.

According to the Shin Bet, the two admitted during interrogation to attempting a terror attack in December 2014 in Tel Rumeida in Hebron. The suspects wished to draw IDF soldiers by throwing an explosive device to a point where a powerful explosive was buried and then detonate the explosive against the soldiers. Due to a technical glitch the explosive failed to go off.

The suspects planned a number of different kinds of terror attacks, collecting intelligence on places where Israelis were present in Hebron and Jerusalem in order to carry out attacks against them. A number of the suspects expressed willingness to serve as suicide bombers.

Europe:

I rounded the corner and started examining the London townhouses, knowing the one I sought would be devoid of markers announcing any Jewish presence. Finally spotting the synagogue, I went to climb the stairs when, out of the corner of my eye, I saw two men in dark coats cross the street and call to me. I knew who they were and what they wanted.

Questions and answers.
“Where are you going?”

“To synagogue.”

“Where are you from?”

I paused, because I’m never really sure of that answer any more. “New York. I work for New York University, I’m visiting.”

“Where do you go to synagogue?”

Again, I faltered. There were too many answers to that question. “Well, I’m originally from Seattle and there I went to Shevet Achim.”

“Who is your rabbi?”

In Seattle? New York? “Well, it’s complicated, but Rabbi Yehuda Sarna.”

“Ok, and do you keep Shabbat?”

“Yes”

“Do you have ID?” Trick question.

“No, but I emailed my passport copy to the shul on Thursday.”

“OK, and is there anything in your pockets?”

Just my hands, I showed them. Convinced, they radioed inside and the doors opened.

Question and answers.

I was late, arriving only in time for kiddush. I stayed for minchah to make up the difference.

Leaving in a light drizzle, I began to cry. The streets of London aren’t like those of New York City, where crying in public is par for the course, almost a right of passage. I clasped one hand over my mouth and the other to my gut, pulling my sorrow back inward.

I tried to name my sorrow as I walked to lunch. I have had to prove my Judaism before, and in ways far more painful. But never had I done so in order to simply enter a shul. Never had shibboleth been needed in order for me to pray in community. The questions were like those asked by El Al security before a flight to Israel.

Exactly. In order to enter or leave Israel, you answer questions and security decides if you are ok or not. But once there, you are protected. In Europe, the dwindling Jewish communities do their best, but every so often a kosher grocery store in shot up (4 dead), a school is attacked (4 dead), you are spat upon on the streets if you wear clothing that indicates your religion, and the rabbis have advised against doing so, but each time there is an antisemitic attack, Europe proclaims its love for its Jewish citizenry. Hatred of Israel, sure, but love of Jews in Copenhagen, London, Paris, Toulouse… I mentioned the some of the deaths, but none of the death threats or the burned synagogues, nor the fact that most Jews are afraid to send their kids to public schools because they will be attacked for their faith.

So I think that Israel is safer. It is much better to know that you are a target than to pretend that you are not.

– Aggie

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Italy Concerned About ISIS Invasion

They don’t know what to do.

The first thing they ought to do is to relocate the Pope to someplace safe. He seems like a nice guy. IS is capable of beheading him or worse.

Last weekend in Italy, as the threat of ISIS in Libya hit home with a new video addressed to “the nation signed with the blood of the cross” and the warning, “we are south of Rome,” Italian prime minister Matteo Renzi shuttered up the Italian embassy in Tripoli and raised his fist with the threat of impending military action. Never mind that Italy has only 5,000 troops available that are even close to deployable, according to the defense ministry. Or that the military budget was cut by 40 percent two years ago, which has kept the acquisition of 90 F-35 fighter jets hanging in the balance and left the country combat-challenged to lead any mission—especially one against an enemy like the Islamic State.

In fact, Renzi didn’t specify exactly who would wield that military might, and, two days later, when no one volunteered to lead the charge, he backtracked. “It’s not the time for a military intervention,” Renzi told an Italian television station Monday night and said the United Nations had to lead the way. “Our proposal is to wait for the UN Security Council. The strength of the UN is decidedly superior to that of the radical militias.”

It is clear that Italy is taking the threat seriously. I sure hope they have a plan to save all of their beautiful art.

– Aggie

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Europe Furious That Netanyahu Wants Jews To Leave Europe

The very definition of chutzpah

The Metro is the free paper which is available in the tube, in London. Here’s the front page:

metro

Once again, a European Jewish community has been targeted by Islamist terrorism, this time in the Danish capital Copenhagen. For Metro, however, the story isn’t about 37-year-old Dan Uzan, murdered as he stood guard outside a synagogue.

No, it’s all about Benjamin Netanyahu and the opportunity to turn his call for European Jews to make Aliyah into the issue of the day. And splashed all over the front page no less.

And what about The Guardian? Simon Tisdall is the assistant editor and a foreign affairs columnist. His reaction to the Copenhagen terror attack reveals so much about the current trend of thought that still blames the victims for the terror.

Some choice excerpts:

The Copenhagen gunman may turn out to have a similar background [to those of the Paris terrorists], and likewise to have been a lone loose cannon. No terrorist group has claimed responsibility. But the febrile backdrop against which this individual’s crime took place is only too evident: a shooting war with Islamists across large swaths of the Muslim world, growing Islamophobia in western Europe, ever greater polarisation over Israel-Palestine – especially since last year’s Gaza conflict – and a linked rise in antisemitism. [See, it’s the Jew’s fault – Aggie]

To further buttress his willful blindness, Tisdall writes:

David Cameron and Barack Obama lined up on Sunday to defend these values [freedom of speech and religion]. They might be more usefully employed in acknowledging that many current problems can be traced back to the Anglo-American destabilisation of post-2003 Iraq and to the west’s connivance in the suppression of Arab spring pro-democracy uprisings.

But perhaps most insultingly, Tisdall concludes:

In the short term, calls for increased security for frightened Jewish communities, including in Britain, are wholly understandable. Muslim communities deserve similar consideration. [For what? Are they shooting themselves? – Aggie]

Admittedly, this is typical European appeasement and antisemitism, but the NY Times is no better:

When Aydin Soei, a sociologist in Denmark, met members of an inner-city gang in 2008, one teenage tough stood out as more intelligent than his peers, and more mercurial. He showed little interest in Islam, but a deep loathing for Denmark, the country where he was born and spent his entire life.

On Sunday, that former gang member, Omar Abdel Hamid el-Hussein, died in a gun battle with Danish police officers just a few hundred yards from his boyhood home in Norrebro, an immigrant area of the Danish capital. It was the final, bloody episode of a short and angry life that included street crime and macho violence and ended with a 15-hour explosion of militancy on the streets of Copenhagen.

As the authorities across Europe try to figure out how radical Islam turns a tiny but dangerous minority of young Muslims into terrorists, Mr. Soei, the sociologist, said that Mr. Hussein, 22, was an exemplar of a phenomenon of Europe’s urban neighborhoods, not a product of the teachings of the Quran or their distortions by militant preachers.

“This wasn’t an intellectual Islamist with a long beard,” Mr. Soei said. “This was a loser man from the ghetto who is very, very angry at Danish society.”

And more BS at the link. Many paragraphs in, they finally mention that his gang, called “Brothas” held a vigil outside the synagogue where he was shot, and shouted Allahu Akbar! But not to worry, they are just the poor ghetto kids of Europe.

Now, some of you are younger than BTL and I, and don’t recall the Leftie line of 2001, right after the 9/11 terror attacks. Then we were assured that terrorism was all about poverty, racism, etc. The Left gave it up slowly, as it became obvious that the 9/11 terrorists were well-to-do men, with educations, etc. Now it is back in style, apparently.

I don’t doubt that Europe is a fascist cesspool; we know that it is. But terrorism is just a technique and all sorts of people can play. In today’s world, most of them are radical Muslims. Another way to say this is that instead of dealing drugs or mugging old ladies, radical Muslims prefer shooting Jews and beheading Christians.

– Aggie

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And They Just Released The Name Of The Danish Terrorist… Gunner Gunnerson! Not.

His name is Omar Abdel Hamid El-Hussein and he’s Lutheran.

BERLIN – The specter of lethal anti-Semitism has once again engulfed Europe, with the latest murder of the Danish Jew Dan Uzan who was guarding the Copenhagen synagogue. His death along with another Dutch civilian has been attributed to a Danish terrorist Omar Abdel Hamid El-Hussein believed to have been animated by radical Islam.

To understand the continuation of violent anti-Semitism, the German philosopher Theodor W. Adorno said in post-Holocaust Europe, “We will not have come to terms with the past until the causes of what happened then are no longer active. Only because these causes live on does the spell of the past remain, to this very day, unbroken.”

What has filled the vacuum since Europe has relegated Nazism to a largely meaningless status, is the rise of Islamic-animated anti-Semitism enabled by an indifferent mainstream public coupled with an aggressive European Left. Anti-Jewish forces have turned Israel into a human punching bag.

Yep. And that is why we have to refuse to visit Europe (and I was guilty last year, but won’t be repeating the error), refuse to buy their products, discuss this with others, and firmly challenge Israel-bashing when it rears its ugly head. This includes during social engagements. We must let friends know that we’ve had enough.

Here’s some examples from modern Europe:

A telling example came from Austria on Tuesday. A spokesman for the prosecutor’s office in Linz declared a Turkish man’s call to annihilate the Jewish state and kill Jews merely an expression of “displeasure with Israel.”
In early February, a German court in Wuppertal agreed with the explanation offered by three Palestinians that their torching of the local synagogue was a form of protest against Israel’s Operation Protective Edge to stop Hamas rocket fire. The men received a penalty of 200 hours community service.

Try torching a mosque and see what the penalty will be.

A bit more:

Denmark falls into the top four EU countries in terms of jihadist output for the Syrian war theater. In July, Sheikh Abu Bilal Ismail, a Danish imam called for the extermination of the Jews at Berlin’s al-Nur mosque in July.

Ismail said it was necessary to “destroy the Zionist Jews…” and to “count them and kill them to the very last one. Don’t spare a single one of them…. Make them suffer terribly.” He returned to Denmark to continue to preach.

While controversy in Europe surrounds Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s remarks about encouraging Danish Jews to immigrate, Steinberg offered a historical perspective.

“From the time of Herzl, one of the core principles of Zionism is that in order to defend our rights and our lives, Jews must be have sovereignty and self-determination. There are of course other reasons for making aliya, but if Jewish lives cannot be protected in Europe, Israel provides a haven. On this, there is no difference between Likud and Labor; between Netanyahu and [Isaac] Herzog,” he said.

I think that those of us who do not make Aliyah can simply boycott Europe. It is nuts for Jews to drive Mercedes, drink French wine, eat Holland peppers, vacation anywhere on the continent. If we were serious and vocal about this, perhaps their governments might locate their balls.

– Aggie

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Syrian Rebels Ask Israel To Attack Hezbollah

So, do you think that Israel should attack Hezbollah because the rebels request it? Where is “the world community”? Where is the United States of America?

Gone fishin’

Syrian rebels, whose forces are fighting against a new offensive in the South by the axis of the Syrian Army, Hezbollah, and Iran, is calling on Israel to attack their positions.

An Israeli Druse who is in frequent contact with the Syrian opposition said that the warning came to alert the IDF, before the axis is able to take the Syrian Golan that borders Israel.

A Syrian rebel commander in the South vowed to wage guerrilla war against the Lebanese group Hezbollah and Syrian government forces, which have launched a major offensive against insurgents in the sensitive border region near Israel and Jordan.

The offensive that got under way this week is focused in an area south of Damascus that is the last notable foothold of the mainstream armed opposition to President Bashar Assad, who has consolidated control over much of western Syria.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which tracks the war, says the push is being spearheaded by Hezbollah, and that government forces and allied militia have made significant progress.

Mendi Safadi, who served as former Likud deputy minister Ayoub Kara’s chief of staff, has independently met with members of the liberal and democratic Syrian opposition who oppose the Islamists and want friendly relations with Israel.

Safadi met a week and a half ago with Syrian rebel leaders in Bulgaria and has traveled in the region, met with activists, and relayed messages from them to the Prime Minister’s Office.

He was responsible for relaying the congratulatory letters from the Syrian opposition to then President-elect Reuven Rivlin.

More at the link. But it sure seems to me like the vaunted Arab Spring and their European and US supporters should step up to the plate. Europe and the US: Limp and Lame.

– Aggie

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Raze the Settlements!

Is that Caterpillar bulldozer that accidentally ran over Rachel Corrie still operational?

There’s work to be done:

The EU is building hundreds of illegal structures in the West Bank, which the government has not removed in order to avoid a diplomatic tangle with the Europeans, according to a report released Friday by the NGO, Regavim. The structures are being built near Ma’aleh Adumim and its E1 area.

This report is just one of a number the group – a right-wing organization which describes itself as a “research-backed, legal advocacy organization focused on land ownership issues” – has released in recent months.

According to Regavim, European Union support for the Palestinians has in recent years moved from “passive diplomatic and financial assistance to a situation of active cooperation in illegal building which the Palestinian Authority has been advancing unilaterally since 2000, as part of its strategic plan to create a Palestinian state de facto, while avoiding the need for negotiations with Israel.”

This week, prior to the release of its latest report, Regavim took journalists to look at a number of Beduin encampments straddling E1 as well as the Jerusalem-Jericho road. They are not temporary tent encampments as they were in years past, but rather clusters that – in addition to tents and tin shacks – also include modular structures with cement floors bearing the EU logo.

According to Ari Briggs, Regavim’s international relations director, the EU logo is placed on the structures in the belief that this will prevent Israel from demolishing them. Israel is not likely to take down a building with an EU logo, due to concerns over both public relations damage and the harm it could cause to relations with the EU, he said.

Harming relations with the EU would be an added benefit. Anyway, does putting the EU logo on an outhouse make it smell better? Keep the flies away?

The underlying idea behind the joint Palestinian/EU efforts in Area C, Briggs asserted, is to establish a permanent Palestinian presence on the state lands there. “This is great hypocrisy,” Briggs said. “Any time a building goes up for Jews, they raise an outcry, call it illegal and say it endangers peace. They are building illegal houses for Arabs.”

And the outraged cries of foul from Barack Obama, John Kerry, and Jen Psaki will begin in…

That’s what I thought.

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List Of Nations Advised To Show Restraint Grows Daily

Once upon a time, when this blog was in its infancy, the US, the UN and the EU cheerfully told Israel to “show restraint” each and every time Muslims bombed busses and cafes. That used to infuriate me, because I watched the restraint that we showed after September 11th – in both Afghanistan and Iraq. But because appeasement is really just another word for incentive, and because anything that comes with incentives grows and spreads, I’m happy to report that the list of nations needing to show restraint is growing. Let’s see.. Jordan, Japan, Syria, France, Yemen, Libya, Canada, Australia, England. Those are some of the most recent examples of nations which really need to show restraint. Have I missed any?

– Aggie

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What if the Enemy of My Enemy is Still My Enemy?

Your old pal BTL is in a bit of a quandary. He finds the bloated, smug, distant, and undemocratic rule of the European Union repugnant. Yet he finds the Leftist rebellion against it even worse.

What’s a PhD in schadenfreude to do?

Greece says (in the words of the UK’s Sun) “Up Yours, Delors”:

Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis replied that the government would no longer engage with officials representing the country’s despised ‘troika’ of lenders – the European Commission, International Monetary Fund and European Central Bank.

Instead, the new government – which swept to power last weekend on a promise of ending years of austerity – would talk directly to other EU leaders to try to write off more than half of Greece’s £179 billion in rescue loans.

In fact, Tsipras was elected because he vowed to reverse the kind of austerity measures prescribed by Berlin.

To which Berlin (which is Europe, let’s be honest) responded, not so schnell, Zorba:

Germany’s Finance Ministry denied that Berlin is ready to discuss a new 20 billion Euro aid package if Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras accepted supervised economic reforms.

A spokesman claimed it was ‘pure speculation’, adding: ‘That is not on the agenda at all.’

Norbert Barthle, the parliamentary spokesman on budgetary affairs for Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives, told the business daily Handelsblatt there would be ‘serious consequences’ if Athens refused to cooperate.

Hearing that from a German must still make European bowels loosen just a bit, nein?

But he clarified:

He said: ‘There are clear rules and we have legal stipulations about the conditions for giving European credit assistance.

‘If Greece can’t accept these conditions, it must find the necessary funding on the capital markets.’

Translation: starve.

Which is good. That’s how a capitalist should answer socialist twaddle. But in addition to hunger pangs, there will be blood. And you know whose blood it almost always is:

A Greek politician who claimed that Jews “don’t pay taxes” has been elected as Defense Minister, Greek media reported Thursday night, amid already-high concerns over rising anti-Semitism in the country that is only expected to worsen following recent elections.

Panos Kammenos of the Syriza party made the comments during an interview with Greek Ant-1 TV, according to New Greek TV, on December 18 – just days after the drive-by shooting at the Israeli Embassy in Athens.

Local Jewish leaders were outraged at the comments.

“It is a disgrace that a leader of a party in Parliament does not know that Greek Jews are equal citizens and subject to the all the rights and obligations of every citizen,” the Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece stated in response at the time…

With the utmost affection and respect to my Greek Jewish friends, so the [bleep] what? Weren’t Weimar Germany Jews “equal citizens and subject to the all the rights and obligations of every citizen”? And French Jews? And Polish Jews? And Dutch Jews? And even Greek Jews? You can’t argue away vile antisemitism: as Israel has shown, you kill it dead.

You can see BTL’s derriere pierced by the horns of a dilemma. Which is more detestable—the statist bureaucrats of Brussels (aka Berlin); or the neo-Nazis (short for National Socialists) of the fascist Left? It is with a heavy heart that I must side with gray suits over the brown shirts.

But it may be too late:

Tens of thousands of people have massed in central Madrid for a rally organised by radical Spanish leftists Podemos.

The “March for Change” is one of the party’s first outdoor mass rallies, as it looks to build on the recent victory of its close allies Syriza in Greece.

Podemos has surged into the lead in recent opinion polls, and says it will seek to write off part of Spain’s debt if it wins elections later this year.

Podemos says politicians should “serve the people, not private interests”.

Note to Spanish Jews: you may want to start packing your bolsas de viaje now.

PS: I know we’re hard on British antisemites here, and with good reason. But Britain’s reaction toward the EU’s hegemony has been to push back, and to listen to those arguing for greater distance from Berlin (aka Brussels), namely Nigel Farage’s UKIP. There’s the odd nutter in the party, but the Tories, Labour, and the Lib-Dems are no better, often worse. There’s a certain kind of crazy that effects the continent that doesn’t effect the UK.

PPS: Or does it?

The Church of England has launched an investigation into charges of anti-Semitism made against one of its more controversial vicars, Dr. Stephen Sizer.

Sizer, it would seem, has joined the ranks of what the Americans call “truthers” – those who insist that the truth has been concealed regarding who was behind the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States.

Most truthers promote theories that the US government itself was behind the attacks on the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Washington, DC. But Sizer has endorsed a smaller group of truthers who, in medieval blood libel fashion, say the Jews did it.

Sizer this week posted to Facebook a link to an article titled “9/11 Israel did it.” In text accompanying the link, Sizer wondered, “Is this anti-Semitic?” Whether or not it is didn’t seem to matter to Sizer, in whose mind the link in question “raises so many questions.”

PPPS: Never mind:

Britons feel more “unfavorable” to Israel than any other country worldwide except North Korea, a survey found.

The survey — taken in August and published Thursday by Chatham House, the Royal Institute of International Affairs — showed a massive surge in negative attitudes toward Israel since the previous such study, two years earlier. Thirty-five percent of Britons said they “feel especially unfavorable towards” Israel in the 2014 survey, compared to 17% in 2012.

That figure meant that Israel is regarded more unfavorably by Britons than Iran — 33% in the 2014 survey, compared to 45% in 2012. Only North Korea fares worse — regarded as especially unfavorable by 47% in 2014, compared to 40% in 2012.

At least Britain doesn’t have antisemitic politicians spewing ignorant hate speech.

PPPPS: Never mind—again:

Baroness Jenny Tonge, a member of Britain’s House of Lords with a long record of inflammatory, often antisemitic, statements against both Israel and the British Jewish leadership, has again been pressuring British Jews to collectively condemn Israel.

Earlier this week, Tonge tabled a written question in the House of Lords in which she asked “Her Majesty’s Government whether they plan to encourage Jewish faith leaders in the United Kingdom publicly to condemn settlement building by Israel and to make clear their support for universal human rights.”

Tonge’s question, which comes against the background of rising antisemitism in the UK, was quickly condemned by Jewish campaigners.

Jonathan Sacerdoti of the Campaign Against Antisemitism, which recently published a disturbing survey about the current levels of antisemitism in the UK, told The Algemeiner that the “widely accepted” definition of antisemitism coined by the European Union Monitoring Center “specifies that it is antisemitic to hold Jews collectively responsible for any action of the State of Israel.”

“Baroness Tonge has a long history of making these sorts of remarks,” Sacerdoti said. “It is despicable to see her using the House of Lords to try to harass Jewish people.”

I think I’ve said enough. I’ve certainly read enough.

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