National Post | Full Comment

When Israeli paratroopers entered Jerusalem’s Old City during the Six-Day War of 1967, they had to rely on a passing bystander — an old Arab Jerusalemite — to guide them to the Western Wall of Herod’s long-destroyed Jewish Temple.

Why did these soldiers not know the way to the holiest place in all Judaism? Because none had ever visited it. When the Jordanians ruled Jerusalem, Jewish visitors were persona non grata, and many synagogues were bulldozed.

I recite these facts in anticipation of March 30, the date picked by activists for what they call the “Global March to Jerusalem.”

“The march will demand freedom for Jerusalem and its people and to put an end to the Apartheid, ethnic cleansing and Judaisation policies affecting the people, land and sanctity of Jerusalem,” the web site informs us. “We aim to highlight the cause of Jerusalem (the City of Peace) which is considered…

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Anne's Opinions

Further to my blog post from a few months ago about Menachem Zivotofsky, an American boy born in Jerusalem, whose parents requested to have Israel recorded in his passport as his country of birth instead of “Jerusalem” as a city seemingly without a country, (against the wishes of the US Administration), the US Supreme Court ruled that the Federal Court can indeed consider the “Jerusalem passport issue”, clearing the first hurdle for the family to continue their campaign.

(CORRECTION: I have changed the wording above in accordance with advice I received via reader Meir Weiss who posted a comment below) :

WASHINGTON (JTA) — The U.S. Supreme Court returned to the lower courts the issue of whether Americans born in Jerusalem may list “Israel” on their passports — a ruling that drew praise from Jewish groups.

The decision delivered Monday was a success for the family of Jerusalem-born boy Menachem Zivotofsky…

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National Post | News

A gunman suspected of killing seven people in the name of al-Qaeda, including three children at a Jewish school, said on Wednesday he would hand himself over to police to end an hours-long siege in southwestern France.

About 300 police, some in bullet-proof body armor, cordoned off an area surrounding a four-storey house in a leafy suburb of the city of Toulouse where the 24-year-old Muslim man, identified as Mohamed Merah, was holed up on the ground floor.

Merah had been arrested for bomb making in the southern Afghan province of Kandahar in 2007 but escaped months later in a Taliban prison break, the director of prisons in Kandahar told Reuters.

Merah, a French citizen of Algerian origin, was suspected of killing seven people in the name of al Qaeda, including three children at a Jewish school in southwestern France.

Kandahar prison chief Ghulam Faruq said that security forces detained…

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The Chart

Editor’s note: In the Human Factor, we profile survivors who have overcome the odds. Confronting a life obstacle – injury, illness or other hardship – they tapped their inner strength and found resilience they didn’t know they possessed.  This week, Jon Huntsman Sr., father of former Republican presidential candidate Jon Huntsman Jr., shares his story.

When this businessman was born 74 years ago, he wasn’t expected to live. He’s also survived four types of cancer: prostate, mouth and two types of skin cancer — squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma. Yet, he says his biggest challenge in his life was watching his daughter Kathleen die after suffering from drug addiction and leaving behind seven young children, whom he helped raise.

Huntsman has donated more than $1 billion dollars for cancer research and scholarships.  He sat down with CNN at his headquarters in Salt Lake City and shared some of his thoughts. The following…

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This Just In

A shooting at a Jewish school in southern France resulted in casualties but authorities did not immediately say how many people were wounded or killed.

Media reports placed the number of dead at three, but CNN could not immediately confirm the figure.

The shooting took place at a private school, Ozar Hatorah, in the city of Toulouse — the same city where a soldier was fatally shot earlier this month.

France has one of the largest Jewish populations in Europe, with 380 reported acts of anti-Semitism in 2011, according to the French Jewish organization CRIF.

The news of Monday’s shooting brought immediate reaction from Israel and France’s grand rabbi.

“We follow with shock the news coming from France, and we trust the French authorities to shed full light on this crime and to bring those responsible to justice,” said Yigal Palmor, the spokesman for the Israeli foreign ministry.

Gilles Bernheim…

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National Post | News

Canadians suffer from a “collective national amnesia” regarding Tommy Douglas’s support for eugenics, likely because they are reluctant to taint the medicare pioneer’s glowing image with unsavoury ideas, suggests a prominent McGill University physician in a new analysis.

Biographies and other accounts of Mr. Douglas’s life have either ignored or down-played his striking embrace in the mid-1930s of forced sterilization and segregation for people of “sub-normal” intelligence and morality, says Dr. Michael Shevell in a newly published academic paper.

He argues that people should instead make a point of remembering the CCF/NDP leader’s early advocacy of eugenics as a cautionary tale about simplistic medical solutions to social problems — even as they admire his many other, positive accomplishments.

“We need to know as Canadians that our past isn’t just one long, unblemished record, and that we have gone down the wrong path on several occasions. We need to be aware…

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National Post | News

By Sarah Marsh

German architect Rainer Mielke lives in a luxurious, light-filled penthouse atop a Nazi bunker in which his elderly neighbours remember sheltering during the Second World War.

The architect has pioneered the art of converting the grim structures into bright living or working spaces, and his work is set to increase as Germany ramps up sales of the above-ground forts, originally designed as air-raid shelters.

But the work is not without controversy: Nearly all the bunkers were built with forced labour. And as bunkers become hot property, critics warn against treating them like any other real estate without acknowledging their past.

One of Bremen’s bunkers is Germany’s largest, Valentin, looming on the outskirts of the city. More than 1,400 prisoners from across Europe died during its construction.

The bunker is not up for sale, but the government is considering renting out one section to defray the maintenance costs…

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