Trump Violates National Security

Trump revealed intelligence secrets to Russians in Oval Office: officials

By Jeff Mason and Patricia Zengerle | WASHINGTON

President Donald Trump disclosed highly classified information to Russia’s foreign minister about a planned Islamic State operation, two U.S. officials said on Monday, plunging the White House into another controversy just months into Trump’s short tenure in office.

The intelligence, shared at a meeting last week with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Russian Ambassador Sergei Kislyak, was supplied by a U.S. ally in the fight against the militant group, both officials with knowledge of the situation said.

The White House declared the allegations, first reported by the Washington Post, incorrect.

“The story that came out tonight as reported is false,” H.R. McMaster, Trump’s national security adviser, told reporters at the White House, adding that the leaders reviewed a range of common threats including to civil aviation.

“At no time were intelligence sources or methods discussed. The president did not disclose any military operations that were not already publicly known…I was in the room. It didn’t happen,” he said.

Russia’s foreign ministry said reports that Trump had revealed highly classified information were “fake”, according to the Interfax news agency.

The White House also released a statement from Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who said the Oval Office meeting focused on counterterrorism, and from Deputy National Security Adviser Dina Powell, who called the Washington Post story false.

Still, the news triggered concern in Congress.

The Senate’s No. 2 Democrat, Dick Durbin, called Trump’s conduct “dangerous” and “reckless”.

Bob Corker, the Republican head of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, called the allegations “very, very troubling” if true.

“Obviously, they’re in a downward spiral right now and they’ve got to come to grips with all that’s happening,” he said of the White House.


The latest controversy came as Trump’s administration reels from the fallout over his abrupt dismissal of former FBI Director James Comey and amid congressional calls for an independent investigation into allegations of Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. election.

One of the officials said the intelligence discussed by Trump in his meeting with Lavrov was classified “Top Secret” and held in a secure “compartment” to which only a handful of intelligence officials have access.

After Trump’s disclosure of the information, which one of the officials described as spontaneous, officials immediately called the CIA and the National Security Agency, both of which have agreements with a number of allied intelligence services around the world, and informed them what had happened.

While the president has the authority to disclose even the most highly classified information at will, in this case he did so without consulting the ally that provided it, which threatens to jeopardize a long-standing intelligence-sharing agreement, the U.S. officials said.

Since taking office in January, Trump has careened from controversy to controversy, complaining on the first day about news coverage of his inauguration crowds; charging his predecessor, former President Barack Obama, with wiretapping; and just last week firing the FBI director who was overseeing an investigation into potential ties between Trump’s presidential campaign and the Russian government.

Trump, a Republican who has called allegations of links between his campaign team and Russia a “total scam,” sharply criticized his 2016 election rival, Democrat Hillary Clinton, for her handling of classified information as secretary of state, when she used a private email server.

The FBI concluded that no criminal charges against Clinton were warranted, but Comey said she and her colleagues had been “careless” with classified information.


In his conversations with the Russian officials, Trump appeared to be boasting about his knowledge of the looming threats, telling them he was briefed on “great intel every day,” an official with knowledge of the exchange said, according to the Post.

Some U.S. officials have told Reuters they have been concerned about disclosing highly classified intelligence to Trump.

One official, who requested anonymity to discuss dealing with the president, said last month: “He has no filter; it’s in one ear and out the mouth.”

One of the officials with knowledge of Trump’s meeting with the Russian called the timing of the disclosure “particularly unfortunate,” as the President prepares for a White House meeting on Tuesday with Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, an ally in the fight against Islamic State.

Trump’s first foreign trip also begins later this week and includes a stop in Saudi Arabia, another Islamic State foe, and a May 25 NATO meeting in Brussels attended by other important U.S. allies. He also has stops planned in Israel and the Vatican.

The president’s trip and latest uproar over his meeting with Russian officials come amid rumors that he might shake-up his senior staff in a bid to refocus his administration.

(Additional reporting by David Alexander, Mark Hosenball, Susan Cornwell, Ayesha Rascoe and Steve Holland; Editing by Kieran Murray and Bill Tarrant, Ralph Boulton)

Israeli Official: Trump Sharing Intelligence With Russia Is “Worst Fears Confirmed”

Two Israeli officials tell BuzzFeed News that the intelligence shared by Trump “syncs up” with intelligence that Israel shared with its US counterparts.




It is the last day of the Jewish calendar. Tomorrow begins Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. This article is an important one for Jews and non-Jews around the world to read.




“Extreme polarization around issues facing Israel is one of the most difficult challenges our Jewish communities in North America face. On the one hand, there is a great desire among Jews to feel a sense of peoplehood or family resemblance, a set of principles, values and identifiers which connect us to one another. Until a number of years ago, one could say that participating in the revitalization of the Jewish people in the State of Israel was one of those core values. Despite deep differences in theology, culture and ritual practice, most of the Jewish world cried together when Israel hurt and rejoiced together when Israel prevailed.

On the other hand, the narrative of Israel around which North American Jews rallied had been a somewhat idealized one: one which promised that Jewish sovereignty would look different from the nations of the world. We were captivated by the notion that we might fulfill the Herzlian dream of Israel as a model nation-state to the world, emanating light, peace and unity of all peoples. Planting a tree in Israel was like planting a little bit of our souls in its soil. And there was no purer, sweeter place to breathe the air of being Jewish.

If this was the content of why Israel became a powerful “religious” nation in the 20th century, an emerging feature of 21st century Jewry is a growing fragmentation of the narrative. For some North American Jews, there is a growing discomfort with the direction Israel is heading as it confronts its geopolitical and internal realities. For them, today’s Israel isn’t fulfilling her mission of being a state that reflects their most previous values, responding to its challenges instead in ways that mystify their Jewish consciences.
Others remain stalwart in seeing Israel’s growth and development as a nation over the decades as nothing short of a political, religious, technological and economic miracle despite overwhelming challenges to its survival. Not only that, in a world with anti-Semitism on the rise, supporting Israel as a safe haven for the world’s Jews feels essential. For their friends or family members to speak of Israel’s failings mystifies their Jewish conscience. They might expect those views from people outside of the Jewish community or from anti-Semites, but it is nothing short of betrayal coming from one of “us.” There doesn’t seem to be a middle ground on this point: one is either loyal to Israel, or a self-hating Jew.

As difficult as it is for those of us who feel deeply bound to the Jewish State and those who feel disillusioned though ultimately loyal, it is critical for us as a community to be open to the possibility that those who express “anti-Israel” sentiments might be expressing deeply Jewish intuitions. We can choose not to fragment ourselves into camps and believe we are resilient enough as a community to hear what our fellow Jews feel they need to contribute to the conversation. If there is a truth with which we need to grapple together, we will all be stronger for it. Our dialog around Israel must be for us machlket l’shaym shamayim, one serving the highest of purposes, not one that tears us apart. At the end of the day, what it at stake for us all as Jews is how true we each can be in reflecting the face of Torah when we speak and act on our convictions. It’s not only remaining in relationship with Jews of all kinds but in the pureness of our intentions in how we engage in difficult conversations that we may discover again how bound we are to one another and find a way forward.”

–Rabbi Betsheva Meiri, Congregation Beth HaTephila, Asheville, NC





Jews plan Global Shabbat to Protest Demolitions of Palestinian Villages

Jewish activists plan global Shabbat protest against demolitions




Jewish activists around the  world are preparing to take part this weekend in a “global Shabbat against demolition” of  Palestinian villages.

Event organizers say the initiative is a response to a plea by residents of four Palestinian communities – Al Arqib, Umm el-Hiran, Umm al-Khair and Sussiya – who say the demolition of their villages is imminent.

Last week, the High Court of Justice ordered Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman to issue an opinion on the demolition of Sussiya within two weeks.

People from Israel, the UK, the US, Canada and Australia are taking part in the Shabbat initiative.

“As Jews, we say emphatically that forced displacement, dislocation and demolition do not represent our values,” said a joint call to action put out by the anti-occupation collective All That’s Left, the Center for Jewish Nonviolence (CJNV) and the T’ruah organization.

“These demolitions represent a continued policy of systematic discrimination. As members of a people who have experienced expulsion, persecution and dispossession, we stand with all Palestinian communities facing eviction,” their statement said.

Israeli activists are planning to spend Shabbat at Sussiya, as they did a month ago.

“It’s important for me as a member of an international anti-occupation organization to stand with them. They know [that] international pressure, Jewish and non-Jewish, is a key component of their ability to continue to thrive and exist,” Israeli organizer Erez Bleicher of All That’s Left and CJNV told The Jerusalem Post.

“This global response really represents a movement for justice that will continue to advocate non-violently for a more sustainable reality in which Palestinians can live with dignity and full rights,” Bleicher added.

The event is expected to take different forms from community to community, with some resembling more traditional demonstrations and others comprising Jewish study sessions.

In Melbourne, organizers will shape their Shabbat around the “social-justice lens of Judaism.”

Participants will bring in Shabbat together, share a potluck dinner and take a group photo to upload to social media with the hashtag #Shabbat Against Demolition.They will also hold discussions about the demolitions.

The groups involved include Hashomer Hatza’ir and the Australian Jewish Democratic Society.

Australian organizer Carly Rosenthal, who visited Sussiya and other Palestinian villages last month with CJNV, will share her experiences with the group.

“This Shabbat is all about exemplifying the values of equality, peace, justice and morality. With the Shabbat, we hope to engage the Jewish community around the demolitions happening in these Palestinian communities, and rally together as Jews against the status quo of the occupation,” Rosenthal said.

Hearings on the demolition of Sussiya were halted last year, when villagers and the Civil Administration agreed to sit down and see if they could agree on a plan for the village, either in its current location or at a nearby site. But the process was halted when Liberman took over the Defense Ministry in June, and the Civil Administration waited for him to issue an opinion on the matter.

Liberman has in the past called for the demolition of Sussiya, which has been in a land battle with the state since the 1980s.

“Thus far, the court hasn’t decided to intervene, so we want to show solidarity and that we are representatives of the international audience that is watching what’s happening,” said American-Israeli activist Shifra Sered.

Tovah Lazaroff contributed to this report.

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There are Jews in Israel and around the world who feel that demolishing buildings in Palestine villages is wrong. I agree. This is a non-violent act of protest and I hope that many Jews around the world will participate and that the Israeli government will take heed of the wishes of the people. Mazel Tov.




Working Together for Peace

Israelis and Palestinians Join Forces to March for Peace Together

by John Vibes, October 20,2015 on

In recent months, news of violence between Israelis and Palestinians has become more frequent than ever. However, last week hundreds of Israelis, Palestinians, and other nationalities joined together to march for peace in Jerusalem and Washington.

The protests were associated with a three-day BDS solidarity wave with other demonstrations that were held at Israeli embassies in cities across Europe and South America.

Jews and Palestinians 1

The protests in Washington were primarily directed at the massive military aid packages that Israel receives from the US.

Nejwa Ali, a Palestinian-American from Buffalo, New York told reporters, “I’ve been to Palestine before and witnessed occupation, intentional discrimination and murder of Palestinians by the Israeli military, the U.S. Government supports Israel with $3 billion a year and the Americans need to know.”

Although there is still an unfortunate amount of racism in the Middle East, most of the hate is generally fueled and stirred up by the politicians who benefit from and thrive on it, and this hateful sentiment is not shared by the vast majority of the general population.

While the politicians and military leaders continue to promote hate and violence, there are more and more situations popping up that are showing the path towards a more peaceful future. Many groups and individuals are stepping up, risking their public reputations and their lives to speak out for what they believe is right. What is even better is that average people are working to apply their own skills and talents towards bringing the Palestinians and Israelis together.

For years, peace activists in Palestine have been teaming up with other peace activists in Israel as well as the United States and Iran to spread a message of love and unity among people of all geographical locations…..regardless of what all the crazy politicians say.

Jews and Palestinians 2

Some of the most popular of these efforts is the Palestine loves Israel and Israel loves Palestine campaigns, which started out as a viral Facebook phenomena where Palestinians and Israelis would send messages of love to one another and reassure each other that the hateful rhetoric put forward by governments and media outlets are totally out of line with the true feelings of the average person.

Also, just last year an Israeli metal band called Orphaned Land joined forces with the Palestinian band Khalas for an 18 gig tour that visited 6 different countries. The purpose of the tour was to promote peace and unity between the Palestinian and Israeli people. The bands even lived together and shared a tour bus throughout the duration of their travels.


As most of you know I am 100% for peace. WWII was the only righteous war. I am always advocating for peace and my heart is full tonight with thoughts for peace.We need peace in our own hearts and peace in our families. We need to stop all abuse in our families. We need peace in America and Congress needs to actually do what they were elected for. We need peace in the world.

Peace in palestine and Israel would be a defining moment in the history of our world. I encourage you to follow what is happening in the Middle East. We must all put a halt on revenge, hatred, and judgment.

I can no more understand the suspicion of those who are different now than when I was a child. One of the great strengths of humankind is that we are different. People of different nationalities make a beautiful picture. We don’t need to all worship alike, or look alike. We don’t need to speak alike.We are all children of the Universe and as such we do have a responsibility to make peace as often as we can. We need to get out of our own heads and find the similarities between us and use  them to understand one another better, to love one another better. We need to know that we may be writers, photographers, musicians, painters and mimes but we can speak through our work. We need to show how much that love, gentleness, compassion, kindness and concern can change our lives and the lives of those around.

Whether, you have a spiritual path or are an atheist, we take care of each other, we must care about the lives and trials of the other people in the world. When the hatred of some humans, explodes one day, we will lose many material things and people that we love and care about. It will be too late then. I do not have the personality to run a country, and yet I know that our Congress is not performing their job descriptions and are therefore, letting American citizens down.

Many good men and women laid down their lives during the Revolutionary War to give us freedom. The Constitution needs to be respected and honored as well as the memories of those who fought and designed our Bill of Rights and our Constitution.

Some times, while watching the news, and they are interviewing Congress, I wonder what George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Paul Revere, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams among others would think about what is happening and often not happening in Congress.  The Founding Fathers had their own differences but they worked through them and designed a country that is the greatest democracy ever. So work for peace, work for good communications, accept what is different and cherish this planet that we were given. As I have said before, there is no Planet B.




Mountain stream Photograph and copyright by Barbara Mattio 2015

Mountain stream
Photograph and copyright by Barbara Mattio 2015

U.S.-Israel Relations under President Obama

5 Things You Need to Know About the U.S.-Israel Relationship Under President Obama


Many people are questioning the actions of Israel, recently and, at least here in America, questioning Israel’s actions can generate accusations of being Anti-Israel, which in turn generates accusations of Anti-Semitism.

But Israel is not just an ideal, it is a country, a political, democratic entity, accountable to not only its own citizens but — as the Zion of old — to all the Jews in the diaspora.

Questioning, even criticizing, the actions of the Israeli government is no more Anti-Israel than criticizing the actions of the President or Congress in the U.S. is Anti-American.  On the contrary, open criticism of the government — of any democratically elected government — is crucial to the democratic process.


Liberal Zionism compels us to criticize Israel for her flaws

My devotion to Israel can be unconditional, even if I am critical – sometimes harshly critical — of Israeli policies that make no sense.

By Rabbi Eric H. Yoffie | Feb. 19, 2015 | 6:25 PM |  1



An Israeli flag and flowers placed outside the Copenhagen synagogue, February 15, 2015. Photo by AP


This is Zionism’s moment. It would be nice if the neo-cons could get it right.

In the February issue of Commentary magazine, the flagship publication for Jewish neo-conservatives, the lead article is a lengthy editorial entitled “The Existential Necessity of Zionism after Paris.” It begins as a rousing and inspirational embrace of Zionism. But alas, the piece quickly becomes simply another attempt to bash Zionists of a more liberal persuasion and to misrepresent Zionism in the process.

All of this is too bad because this should be a time for lovers of Israel to join forces. The dangers are clear to us all. European Jew haters, having slaughtered Jews in Paris, have moved on to another country and another target: Copenhagen. Which Jewish community will be next?

Jews have every right to live in France and in Denmark, of course. And if they make this choice, they are entitled to the protection of their governments. But the fact is that their ability to live in a European state — any European state — with a reasonable measure not only of security but of serenity is very much in doubt. People are out to kill them, and civil authorities have shown themselves unable or unwilling to come to their defense.

What all this means is that the Zionist founders, Europeans all, were right. Theodor Herzl, writing in 1896 of European Jews in a little pamphlet entitled “The Jewish State,” made the case succinctly:

“In vain are we (Jews) loyal patriots, our loyalty in some places running to extremes; in vain do we make the same sacrifices of life and property as our fellow citizens… In countries where we have lived for centuries we are still cried down as strangers…”

What the Jews must have, wrote Herzl, is a state of their own, and he offered a practical program to make this happen. Following the murderous lunacies of the Holocaust, that state was finally created, and Holocaust survivors and endangered Jews of Arab lands flocked to its shores. Ironically, the horrors of Nazi exterminations convinced many well-meaning people that what had happened once could not possibly happen again. Israel was a blessing, the argument went, but the world has learned its lesson, and the Jewish Diaspora is now secure.

But, outside of the United States, this was not true, and recent events in Europe have demonstrated yet again the precariousness of Jewish life. And they have made clear as well the absolute necessity of Zionism as Herzl and his successors understood it.

Herzl, Weizmann, Jabotinsky, and Ben-Gurion were realistic men with down-to-earth goals. Despite their considerable differences, they all believed that the first priority for Zionism is to normalize Jewish existence. This meant not being distracted by messianic visions or extremist ideologies but giving priority to the fundamentals of state-creation and state-building. Whatever else happened, the Jews must have the apparatus of a state, an army to fend off their enemies, and borders that would be open to any Jew, at any time, and for any reason.

And because of the single-mindedness of its leaders, Zionism succeeded. The Jews, after 2,000 years, again govern themselves, defend themselves, and provide a safe haven to Jews anywhere. Diaspora Jewry faces many challenges, but its most important task by far is defending the State of Israel. And a century from now, when historians make their judgments about the mettle of American Jewry, nothing else will matter if American Jews have not done enough to assure Israel’s survival.

The Commentary article says this, more or less. And if it had said only this, I would have applauded. But it quickly moves from celebrating and affirming Zionism to attacking those in the Jewish world who do not share their right-wing perspective. Their argument goes like this: Right-wing Zionism is “practical Zionism,” while left-wing Zionism is “conditional Zionism.” Right-wing Zionism supports Israel no matter what, while left-wing Zionism supports Israel only if she fulfills leftwing fantasies of peace and justice. Right-wing Zionism sees Israel as a necessity to repulse anti-Semites, while left-wing Zionism sees Israel as an instrument to save the world.

Such arguments are a caricature and a joke. I believe, as the Commentary editors do, in “unconditional Zionism.” Zionism is not a fad or a flavor, to be embraced according to one’s whims. But Commentary confuses “unconditional” Zionism with “uncritical” Zionism. And this is absurd. My devotion to Israel can be unconditional, even if I am critical — sometimes harshly critical — of Israeli policies that make no sense.

No less absurd is the claim that the right is the voice of “practical Zionism.” If only it were so. The tragedy of right-wing Zionism is that it has ceased to be practical in any way whatsoever. The obsessive settlement building of the Israeli right contributes not a whit to Israel’s security and undermines her ties to allies and friends. Continued settlement building is not a practical plan but an ideology gone wild.

And no less impractical are the laughably inept policies of the Israeli right that poison Israel’s relations with the great powers, in particular the United States. Herzl and Jabotinsky, founders mentioned by Commentary as “practical,” worked ceaselessly to cultivate understandings with the great powers of their day. They believed that only such alliances could provide salvation for the Zionist movement. The arrogant dismissal by today’s right-wing Zionists – both in Israel and the Diaspora – of close, cooperative ties with Israel’s American patron is not “practical.” It is shocking and crazy.

If the neo-cons want to proclaim the existential necessity of Zionism after Paris, I’m with them. If they want this Zionism to be unconditional, I’m with them again. And I’m realistic enough to know that only a tough, muscular Zionism will suffice in a dangerous world. But the “practical Zionism” that they admire is not to be found on the right. If it exists anywhere, it exists on the center-left. And if Israel is threatened today from within, it is not by the messianic visions of the Zionist left but by the extremist ideologies of the Zionist right.

Rabbi Eric H. Yoffie served as president of the Union for Reform Judaism from 1996 to 2012. He is now a writer, lecturer and teacher in Westfield, New Jersey. 


Jewish family getting smaller


Rabbi Shmuel Segal of the Jewish educati

Rabbi Shmuel Segal of the Jewish education centre looks up at the Chanukkah lights in front of Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, December 20, 2011.Odd Andersen —AFP/Getty Images


  • Synagogues from the UK to France have been defaced, and there’s no sense of outrage to be found

    Karol Markowicz @karol  at Time.Com


My first flight was international, 2,500 miles from my birthplace in Kyubishev, Russia, to Rome, Italy in 1978. Italy was a common stopover for Russian Jews fleeing the Soviet Union. We stayed three months in a small apartment in Ladispoli, a suburb of Rome. I ate a lot of chocolate and oranges while my parents learned Italian and waited to hear that America would let us in.

When we got to Brooklyn, they got busy working. In Russia, my father had been a doctor, my mother a teacher. Here, he drove a cab and she knitted yarmulkes for the local Judaica store.


My parents had spent their lives looking at maps of the world and planning where they would go when they were free. We were poor, but they saved all of their money for the traveling we would do. The world was suddenly so big, after a lifetime of insurmountable Soviet borders, and we were going to go everywhere. My first trip was to Venezuela in 1983.

The first few days we stayed at the Caracas Hilton. It was magical. I had never seen a pool that big. I may have never seen a pool at all. No one spoke English but, well, neither did we, so a lot of the conversations were an interpretive dance. We’d act out eating to find the restaurant and spoke in pidgin Italian and hoped it was close enough. Somehow it always was.

Two days later we flew to Canaima National Park, our real destination. We slept in a hut, swam in red water and saw piranhas. We’d hear animals outside of our door at night. I saw little children on monkey bars at a nearby school and marveled at how similar they were to me.

No one goes to Venezuela anymore. It became, for all intents and purposes, off-limits years ago. The State Department warns American travelers about kidnappings and suggests not visiting.

We traveled a lot through my childhood and adolescence. My parents were partial to weird places: Devil’s Island off the coast of French Guiana in South America, and the Amazon River, where I saw bugs the size of my head and met people who didn’t use currency so they traded their handmade goods for Disney World t-shirts. We saw beautiful, safe places, along with the strange and dangerous. Istanbul, Punta del Este, Buenos Aires and a tiny island called Îles des Saintes all stick out in my mind. But what I remember most from our family trips is the smell of sewage, impoverished children selling gum to tourists and an element of danger everywhere we went as my parents forced my brother and me to really see our wide, strange world.

When I traveled alone for the first time, I wanted something more…familiar. I didn’t want to worry about drinking the water; I didn’t want to do that interpretive dance. My first trip alone, at 17, was to England, Scotland and Wales. They spoke our language, sort of, but everything was different enough to mark it foreign. I got off the bus in beautiful Edinburgh and ended up falling deeply in love with Scotland, visiting again the next summer, then living there two separate times during college. When I tell my 4-year-old daughter about that time, I add that I’ll take her there someday.

Will I, though?

My children both had passports before they turned one. Unfortunately, the big world, the one my family couldn’t wait to see, is getting smaller. I keep track of places off-limits to me because I am Jewish, and that list grows all the time. I check Wikipedia for countries that don’t “recognize” Israel. Those are the ones where I know definitively I am unwelcome. North Africa is tough. I’m only partially surprised Sudan doesn’t recognize Israel, even though U.S. Jews showed an overwhelming support for Darfur. Truth be told, I’m in no rush to get to Mali or Somalia. I guess I’ll miss out on Morocco.

The Middle East is even more fraught, of course. “You can go to United Arab Emirates, certainly to Dubai,” people say. Can I? “Don’t be too open about being Jewish but they don’t care there. They’re very modern.” My husband was born in Israel and it says so on his American passport. They don’t allow Israelis into the United Arab Emirates, at least that’s the official policy of this “modern” country. Even if he wasn’t marked for exclusion, I’m not keeping my Jewishness a secret. If Saudi Arabia opened its doors to me tomorrow, I still wouldn’t go. I’m not covering my head. I’m a woman of the free world, I have spent my life being grateful for this, knowing that a twist of fate gave me freedom I could have so easily not have had.

I wore a Star of David around my neck the entire time I lived in Scotland. I think I’d be uncomfortable doing the same now. The rage emanating from Europe toward Jews is white hot. A synagogue in Surrey was defaced. Another synagogue was vandalized in Miami of all places. But what’s lacking when it happens in Europe is any sense of outrage from the Europeans. In Miami the atmosphere was “how could this happen here?” In Europe there is no such question. Of course it happens there. In France, when synagogues get firebombed, as they do with alarming frequency, there isn’t a national movement to say they won’t stand for it. They very much stand for it. French Jews are the scapegoats for the real problems in France, between the French and those the French call “the Arabs,” even though “the Arabs” have lived there for decades and should just be French by now. Forget Turkey, a country I once enjoyed visiting. They went off the rails years ago. It’s an election year in Turkey now, so obviously Israel is the top issue in a country with 9% unemployment.

Israeli performers get disinvited from a festival in Edinburgh as if disinviting artists from countries whose politics you don’t like is a normal thing to do. Where is the outrage? They pretend it’s because of Israel, not because they’re Jews. Then the Jewish Film Festival gets canceled in London. An embarrassment. Britain should hang its head in shame. It doesn’t. A crowd in Germany (in Germany!) shouts“Hamas, Hamas, Jews to the gas.” Where is Germany’s soul-searching that this goes on within its borders? Forget Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem signing an anti-Israel letter in a Spanish newspaper. No big deal when the second-biggest newspaper in Spain prints a piece arguing Jews “are not made to co-exist,” with references to how good they are with money, how they deserved expulsion, wondering how they still exist (“persist”) at all.

So no, I won’t be taking my daughter to Scotland anytime soon, or any place where Jews are made to feel unwelcome. I still want to see the whole world and show it to my children, but much of the world right now does not want to see us. I’d take my children to places off the beaten path. I don’t want it to be all Hiltons for them. Sometimes it has to be the hut. But I won’t take my children to places where they are hated for who they are.

I’ve heard that I shouldn’t let a few anti-Semites keep me from traveling. But it’s not the anti-Semites who are the problem. It’s the people in these countries sitting idly by and not saying that these people canceling Jewish film festivals or writing despicable op-eds don’t speak for them. The silence is what is so troubling. The optimist in me hopes things change and that the world opens up to us again. A lot would need to change for that to happen. I wonder if my kids will see Edinburgh or Caracas first.

Karol Markowicz is a writer in New York City.