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Donald Trump’s call to register all Muslims living in the United States has raised the specter of Hitler’s separation of German Jews from the German population, but Hitler’s policy of making Jews wear a yellow star has its origins in a ruling by the Catholic Church more than 800 years ago, according to an article published on

Lateran Council IV is largely remembered among Catholics because it described the Eucharist as an act of transubstantiation (that is, that the bread and wine became the literal flesh and blood of Christ), and called down for harsh punishments against heretics.

What is often omitted in historical accounts of the Council was its harsh pronouncements about Jews who lived in Christian lands. Canons 67-70 mandated that Jews be forced to adhere to the regulations set forth by the Church — laws that crossed national borders to wherever Jews lived in Christendom.

While it is easy to dismiss these laws as products of their time, it is Canon 68 that has continued to have repercussions down through the 21st century and in the rhetoric of Donald Trump. Trump has called for the “watching” of mosques and Muslim-Americans because he links them all to terrorism. And Americans cannot tell peaceful Muslims from those who are plotting destruction.

“Until we are able to determine and understand this problem and the dangerous threat it poses, our country cannot be the victims of horrendous attacks by people that believe only in Jihad, and have no sense of reason or respect for human life.” – statement on Trump’s campaign website, quoted by CNN

Christians harbored similar fears about Muslims — and Jews. Instead of terrorism, however, what the Church feared was that secret Jews would impregnate Christian women, or that a Jewish woman would seduce a Christian man, which they thought would be disastrous. Thus, the Church mandated that Jews had to wear special clothing so that Christians could tell who they were interacting with.

Canon 68 said “we decree that such Jews and Saracens of both sexes in every Christian province and at all times shall be marked off from other peoples through the character of their dress.”

Source: Trump’s Rhetoric On Muslims Echoes 800-Year-Old Church Ruling – WorldNews

Local councils are facing legal action at the High Court today over their decisions to impose boycotts on Israeli goods produced in “illegal” Israeli settlements in the West Bank.

Jewish Human Rights Watch (JHRW) is seeking judicial review against three authorities – Leicester City Council, Swansea City Council and Gwynedd Council.

The campaign group is expected to ask Lord Justice Simon and Mr Justice Flaux, sitting in London, to rule the “anti-Semitic” boycotts unlawful because they breach the Local Government Act 1988 and the Equality Act 2010.

The organisaton has likened the “divisive” town hall action to the boycott of Jewish shops in 1930s Nazi Germany.

But the charity War on Want has condemned the JHRW legal challenge as “shameful”.

Senior campaigner Ryvka Barnard said: “It’s shameful that local councils are being attacked for ensuring their policies are in line with international and UK law.

“The illegal settlements are a part of the systematic abuses of international law and human rights committed by Israel against the Palestinians.”

The Government is issuing new guidance to public authorities warning such bans are “inappropriate” unless formal legal sanctions or embargoes have been put in place by the Government itself.

The Cabinet Office says boycotts could “undermine good community relations, poison and polarise debate, weaken integration and fuel anti-Semitism”.

At the same time they could hinder the UK’s export trade and harm international relationships, say ministers.

But Ms Barnard said: “The UK Government has reiterated over and over again that Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories are illegal, and has issued advice to businesses on the risks of investing in or trading with illegal settlements.”

The Labour-led Leicester council approved its motion in favour of a boycott in 2014.

The council has stated: “The motion has never been a boycott of Israel by Leicester and is not an attack on the Jewish people. It relates specifically to illegal Israeli settlements in the West Bank.”

A Swansea council spokesman said: “The council has never boycotted Israeli goods and has no intention of doing so. For legal reasons, it would be inappropriate to comment further.”

Gwynedd Council made clear that its own boycott was aimed at condemning the “attacks by the Israeli state on the territory of the Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip”.


Source: Israel boycott ban: Local councils face legal action at High Court over boycott on Israeli goods made in West Bank | Home News | News | The Independent

Solar Impulse, the zero-fuel aeroplane, has flown the first leg across the continental United States in its attempt to fly around the world.

It left Mountain View, California, at dawn on Monday and landed 16 hours later in Goodyear, a suburb of Phoenix, Arizona.

It was the 10th leg of its round the world quest.

Swiss adventurer Andre Borschberg was at the controls, having taken over from Bertrand Piccard.

Piccard flew Solar Impulse to the West Coast of the US from Hawaii just over a week ago.

The latest stint was relatively short – 1,113 km.

Take-off from the famous Moffett Airfield occurred at 05:03 PDT (12:03 GMT) and the plane landed in Phoenix at 20:55 PDT.

The team has traversed America before, in 2013. That crossing was undertaken in the prototype predecessor to the current aircraft. But it does mean the weather conditions the Solar Impulse is likely to encounter will be well understood.

Piccard and Borschberg are aiming to get to New York by the start of June, to begin preparations for the big Atlantic crossing.

Source: Solar Impulse aeroplane reaches Phoenix, Arizona – BBC News

Under pressure from U.S. regulators, Japanese air bag manufacturer Takata Corp (7312.T) is expected to announce as early as Wednesday that it is recalling 35 million to 40 million additional inflators in U.S. vehicles, three sources briefed on the matter said on Tuesday.

The expanded recall will be phased in over several years and more than double what is already the largest and most complex auto safety recall in U.S. history. The new recall will cover all frontal air bag inflators without a drying agent, sources briefed on the matter said.

To date, 14 automakers, led by Honda Motor Co (7267.T), have recalled 24 million U.S. vehicles with 28.8 million inflators due to the risk that they can explode with too much force and spray metal shards inside vehicles.

In recent days, officials from the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) told Takata they need to expand the recall based on the government’s determination of the root cause of the problems, sources briefed on the matter said.

NHTSA spokesman Bryan Thomas declined to confirm the expanded recall. “NHTSA has reviewed the findings of three separate investigations into the Takata air bag ruptures. The recall of Takata air bag inflators… continues and the agency will take all appropriate actions to make sure air bags in Americans’ vehicles are safe.”

The new recall is expected to include about 35 million passenger-side air bags and some driver-side air bags without a drying agent. It is also expected to include some air bags that were previously replaced that did not have a drying agent.

Takata spokesman Jared Levy declined to confirm the expansion, but said the company is “working with regulators and our automaker customers to develop long-term, orderly solutions to these important safety issues.”

Source: Takata to announce recall of 35 million-40 million U.S. air bag inflators: sources | Reuters

Police investigating the death of a teenage girl after she took an ecstasy pill have arrested two people.

Faye Allen suffered an adverse reaction after apparently taking a pill nicknamed “MasterCard” while on a night out in Manchester.

Officers were called to Victoria Warehouse in Trafford in the early hours of Monday morning but the 17-year-old died in hospital a short time later.

A 19-year-old man and a 20-year-old woman arrested in the St Helens area are being held on suspicion of possession with intent to supply a Class A drug.

Detective Chief Inspector Ben Ewart of Greater Manchester Police’s Trafford Division said: “Our thoughts and condolences remain with the family of this girl at this heart-breaking time.

“We have made two arrests in connection with this investigation and currently have a man and a woman in custody who will be questioned later today.

“Sadly, we know that other people will have taken this form of ecstasy, known as ‘MasterCard’, and we are continuing to urge anybody who may have taken it to please get themselves checked out.

Source: Two Arrested Over Teenager’s Ecstasy Death


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