Palestinians Try To Enter Jerusalem On 'Freedom Ride'


Several Palestinians tried to enter Jerusalem on an Israeli bus from the West Bank.

The Palestinians and activists were attempting to draw attention to the restriction of freedom of movement of the Palestinians in a campaign that imitates the Freedom Rides of the U.S. civil rights movement. West Bank Palestinians are not allowed to enter eastern Jerusalem without special permits.

The Palestinian activists waited for nearly an hour near the West Bank settlement of Psagot until a bus stopped to pick up six of them; several other buses rode by without stopping.

Sarkozy Pledges Friendship to Netanyahu In Letter


French President Nicolas Sarkozy pledged his friendship to Benjamin Netanyahu in a condolence letter written to the Israeli prime minister.

“You have my friendship, and our differing views on the problems of the Middle East, and the interpretations appearing in the media, have no effect on it,” Sarkozy wrote, according to Reuters, citing two unnamed Israeli officials in the prime minister's office. The message was included in a letter of condolence to Netanyahu over the death of his father-in-law, Shmuel Ben-Artzi.

Goldstone: Israel Does Not Practice Apartheid


Saying that Israel practices apartheid policies is "unfair and inaccurate slander," Richard Goldstone wrote in an Op-Ed for The New York Times.

The use of apartheid to describe Israel is "calculated to retard rather than advance peace negotiations," Goldstone, who led the United Nations fact-finding mission on the Gaza war of 2008-09, wrote in a piece that was published Tuesday.

"It is important to separate legitimate criticism of Israel from assaults that aim to isolate, demonize and delegitimize it," he wrote.

Put Released Prisoners On Terror Lists, Jewish Dems Say


Four top Jewish lawmakers called for the names of the Palestinian prisoners released as part of the Gilad Shalit deal to be entered into databases of terrorists.

The four Democratic members of the U.S. House of Representatives wrote to U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and the director of the FBI, Robert Mueller, urging them to list the names of more than 1,000 men and women being released in the prisoner swap in the appropriate databases.

Huntsman Visits Lubavitcher Rebbe's Gravesite


Republican presidential hopeful Jon Huntsman visited the New York gravesite of the Lubavitcher rebbe, Menachem Mendel Schneerson.

Huntsman, the former governor of Utah, visited the Queens gravesite of the late leader of the Chabad-Lubavitch movement last week. He was accompanied by his wife, Mary Kaye, and a number of movement luminaries, including Rabbi Yehuda Krinsky, the chairman of Chabad's educational and social services network, and Rabbi Levi Shemtov, the director of its Washington office.

Abbas: I'll Never Recognize A Jewish State


Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said he will never recognize a Jewish state and that capturing Gilad Shalit was a "good thing."

Abbas made the remarks in an Oct. 23 interview on the Egyptian television channel Dream 2. A transcript of the interview was published in an Oct. 31 report by MEMRI, the Middle East Media Research Institute.

Russian Ship Cancels U.S. Visit Over Judaica Collection


 A Russian sailing ship canceled a good-will visit to the San Francisco port over a dispute concerning a collection of historic Jewish books.

The Nadezhda was due to arrive in San Francisco as part of a trans-Atlantic trip late last week. Instead it changed course for Mexico.

Russian officials reportedly were concerned that the ship might be seized under a court order if it stopped in a U.S. port.

A U.S. District Court in Brooklyn ruled in August 2001 that the Chasidic archive of books known as the Schneerson Collection belongs to the Chabad movement.

Conservative Groups Nix Unity Pledge On Israel


Two conservative groups have rejected the joint appeal from two national Jewish organizations to sign a "unity pledge" on how to treat Israel in political debate.

"An open and vigorous debate on the questions confronting our country is the cornerstone of the American electoral process," the Republican Jewish Coalition said in a statement. "Allowing the American people to see where candidates stand, pro and con on critical issues, is the hallmark of our free and democratic political system."

German Casino Returns Nazi-looted Painting


A German casino has returned a Nazi-looted painting to the heirs of a German-Jewish art gallery owner.

The return of "The Masters of the Goldsmith Guild in Amsterdam in 1701" by Dutch portrait painter Juriaen Pool II (1665-1745), took place Tuesday at the Amsterdam Museum.

The beneficiaries of the estate of Max Stern, who ran a gallery in Germany before he was forced by the Nazis to liquidate his works, are Concordia, McGill and Hebrew universities.

Netanyahu Cancels GA Appearance


Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu canceled plans to address the Jewish federations' annual General Assembly.

"The Prime Minister hoped to go to the GA, but unfortunately he will have to be in Israel during that week," the Jewish Federations of North America said in a statement Monday, less than two weeks before this year's GA launches in Denver. "The Prime Minister and his staff made considerable efforts to adjust his scheduling to allow for a visit to the GA, but in the end this turned out to be impossible."

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