October 30, 2003
Senate Makes Malaysian Aid Conditional
The U.S. Senate made military aid to Malaysia conditional on religious freedom, including greater tolerance of Jews. On Monday, the Senate passed an amendment to its foreign aid spending bill that would require a State Department determination of religious freedom and tolerance in Malaysia before the country could receive a planned $1.2 million military aid package. The move came after Malaysia's prime minister, Mahathir Mohammad, told the leaders of Islamic countries at a conference earlier this month that Jews "rule the world by proxy" and that the Muslim world must unite to defeat them. The amendment's sponsor, Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), said Mahathir's remarks "lent credence and legitimacy to the hateful message of local terrorists that seek to sow mayhem throughout the region." After the Senate's action, Malaysian Foreign Minister Syed Hamid Albar complained Tuesday that the Senate vote was an example of the United States trying to "discipline the world in their own mold."
He said, "So, now it is another Muslim country that is being zeroed in for their so-called disciplining," The Associated Press reported.
Oxford Professor Suspended
An Oxford University science professor has been suspended without pay for two months after rejecting a graduate student for being Israeli. Andrew Wilkie rejected an expression of interest from Tel Aviv University student Amit Duvshani in late June, partly on the grounds that Duvshani had served in the Israel Defense Forces. Oxford announced on Monday that it would suspend Wilkie, prompting him to resign his chair at Oxford's Pembroke College. The resignation of his chair does not prevent him from resuming his normal teaching duties when his suspension ends.
Students Resign From Brandeis Paper
Five journalists have resigned from Brandeis University's student newspaper after a racist remark was printed in a sports column. In a column in the Brandeis Justice, Dan Passner referred to Chicago Cubs manager Dusty Baker, who is black, by quoting another Brandeis student: "The only thing Baker has a Ph.D. in is something that starts with an N and rhymes with Tigger, the cheerful scamp who stole all of our hearts in the Winnie the Pooh series."
The paper's editor-in-chief and sports editor were among those who resigned.
Aliyah for Slain Doctor
Jewish groups will sponsor the aliyah of 10 North American doctors in memory of a doctor killed by a Palestinian terrorist. Nefesh B'Nefesh, a group that subsidizes North American aliyah, and the Friends of Dr. David Applebaum on Monday announced the Applebaum Fellowship for physicians. Applebaum was the American-born doctor who was killed last month with his daughter Nava in a Jerusalem terrorist attack the day before her wedding. Applebaum was director of emergency services at the Shaarei Zedek hospital in Jerusalem and the founder of Terem, an emergency medical-care system that Applebaum deployed throughout Israel.
"By bringing 10 new olim who are experts in the field of emergency medicine to live and work as practicing physicians in Israel, we are responding to" the attack, said Nefesh B'Nefesh director Rabbi Yehoshua Fass.
Rabbis Say Pigs OK
Orthodox rabbis reportedly approved the use of pigs to guard Jewish settlements in the West Bank. The move supersedes the prohibition on raising pigs in the Holy Land, Israel's daily Yediot Achronot reported. Pigs have a finely tuned sense of smell that can detect weapons and intruders, and they also may deter would-be Muslim attackers, since pigs are considered unclean in Islam as well.
Holocaust Claims Approved
A German court ruled that Holocaust-related property claims may be valid even if original ownership documents cannot be found.
The Oct. 23 court decision overturned two lower-court rulings that blocked claims on property taken by the Nazis in the former East Germany on the basis of legal technicalities, The Associated Press reported.
The new ruling establishes that in cases where claimants are unable to come up with documents specifying original owners, they may submit supporting documents through the Claims Conference instead.
Briefs Courtesy Jewish Telegraphic Agency