Skip to main content

Press release for protest tomorrow at Barclays Center 5-7 pm

OK, now there's an English-language press release and poster for the big protest event tomorrow at the Barclays Center, 5-7 pm, which raised concerns about large numbers of buses inundating the area.

The press release comes from an organization called Let Our People Go, whose mission is "Decrying Israel's Persecution of Religious Jews." (The issue, as noted in coverage by the Jerusalem Post and Times of Israel, is somewhat more complicated.)

The press release is headlined Let Our People Go: Tens of Thousands to Protest Israel's Forced Draft of Religious Jews. (Note that the Barclays Center seats 17,732 for basketball, somewhat more if seats are on the floor.)

The text of the press release is verbatim below.
BROOKLYN, N.Y., June 6, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Forced conscription of Israel's religious population will be bringing thousands to protest at Brooklyn's Barclay Center June 11th. The Central Rabbinical Congress of the USA and Canada (CRC), intends to voice their opposition to Israel's plan to forcefully enlist Haredim (Ultra-Orthodox Jews) in the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF), violating their religious precepts.

The demonstration will express solidarity with the Israeli Haredi community while protesting the Israeli government's draft policy and issuing a plea for help from international policy-makers. "We want the world to know about their (Haredi Jews) plight, that their religious rights are being systematically abused. The Israeli government isn't allowing for freedom of assembly or freedom of speech on this issue," said CRC spokesman Rabbi Isaac Green. "This last Friday the Israeli police broke into the Toldos Aharon Synagogue in Jerusalem, clubbing 13-year-old boys and older men. They ended up arresting 16 people for anti-draft activism, for voicing a dissident opinion. They say they're the only democracy in the Middle East, but we're not seeing it."
(PRNewsfoto/Let Our People Go)...

Israel's new draft laws aim to eliminate religious military exemptions, a policy that has been in place since the creation of the Israeli state in 1948. Rejecting assertions that IDF service is incompatible with Haredi religious convictions, the Israeli government has stepped up efforts to coerce Haredim to enlist. "Law-making is one of the milder forms of "encouragement" being used lately", says Rabbi Green. Haredi activists in Israel are reporting almost daily instances of police brutality and the number of anti-draft activists detained in Israel's prisons has ballooned as of late. Peaceful protests have been marred by excessive force on the part of the police and residents of Haredi enclaves tell of being doused with dyed water cannons and flailed by police batons. One recent protest saw the police wielding nightsticks against a group of Haredi women.

Orthodox girls have also been targeted for harassment, says Rabbi Green. "One religious Ethiopian immigrant, Rivka Yeshayahu, was detained for over a month without a bail hearing because the Israeli Postal Service lost her military exemption documents. Three times, no less." The CRC has received numerous reports of the Israeli police breaking into homes at night, without warrants, and carting off those who were previously told that their military exemptions were in order.
"This demonstration is designed to show Israel that they can't just do whatever they want to the religious community," said Rabbi Green, "someone will hold them accountable."


Popular posts from this blog

Barclays Center/Levy Restaurants hit with suit charging discrimination on disability, race; supervisors said to use vicious slurs, pursue retaliation

The Daily News has an article today, Barclays Center hit with $5M suit claiming discrimination against disabled, while the New York Post headlined its article Barclays Center sued over taunting disabled employees.

While that's part of the lawsuit, more prominent are claims of racial discrimination and retaliation, with black employees claiming repeated abuse by white supervisors, preferential treatment toward Hispanic colleagues, and retaliation in response to complaints.

Two individual supervisors, for example, are charged with  referring to black employees as “black motherfucker,” “dumb black bitch,” “black monkey,” “piece of shit” and “nigger.”

Two have referred to an employee blind in one eye as “cyclops,” and “the one-eyed guy,” and an employee with a nose disorder as “the nose guy.”

There's been no official response yet though arena spokesman Barry Baum told the Daily News they, but take “allegations of this kind very seriously” and have "a zero tolerance policy for…

Behind the "empty railyards": 40 years of ATURA, Baruch's plan, and the city's diffidence

To supporters of Forest City Ratner's Atlantic Yards project, it's a long-awaited plan for long-overlooked land. "The Atlantic Yards area has been available for any developer in America for over 100 years,” declared Borough President Marty Markowitz at a 5/26/05 City Council hearing.

Charles Gargano, chairman of the Empire State Development Corporation, mused on 11/15/05 to WNYC's Brian Lehrer, “Isn’t it interesting that these railyards have sat for decades and decades and decades, and no one has done a thing about them.” Forest City Ratner spokesman Joe DePlasco, in a 12/19/04 New York Times article ("In a War of Words, One Has the Power to Wound") described the railyards as "an empty scar dividing the community."

But why exactly has the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s Vanderbilt Yard never been developed? Do public officials have some responsibility?

At a hearing yesterday of the Brooklyn Borough Board Atlantic Yards Committee, Kate Suisma…

No, security guards can't ban photos. Questions remain about visibility of ID/sticker system.

The bi-monthly Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park Community Update meeting June 14, held at 55 Hanson Place, addressed multiple issues, including delays in the project, a new detente with project neighbors,concerns about traffic congestion, upcoming sewer work and demolitions, and an explanation of how high winds caused debris to fly off the under-construction 38 Sixth Avenue building. I'll have more coverage.
Security issues came up several times at the meeting.
Wayne Bailey, a resident who regularly takes photos and videos (that I often use) of construction/operations issues that impact residents, asked representatives of Tishman Construction if the security guard at the sites they're building works for them.
After Tishman Senior VP Eric Reid said yes, Bailey asked why a guard told him not to shoot video of the site, even though he was on a public street.

"I will address it with principals for that security firm," Reid said.
Forest City Ratner executive Ashley Cotton, the …

Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park graphic: what's built/what might be coming (post-dated pinned post)

This graphic, posted in November 2017, is post-dated to stay at the top of the blog. It will be updated as announced configurations change and buildings launch. Note the unbuilt B1 and the proposed shift in bulk to the unbuilt Site 5.

The August 2014 tentative configurations proposed by developer Greenland Forest City Partners will change. The project is already well behind that tentative timetable.

The previous graphic, from August 2017 (without the ghost B1)

Barclays Center event June 11 to protest plans to expand Israeli draft; questions about logistics

At right is a photo of a poster spotted in Hasidic Williamsburg right. Clearly there's an event scheduled at the Barclays Center aimed at the Haredi Jewish community (strict Orthodox Jews who reject secular culture), but the lack of English text makes it cryptic.

The website explains, Protest Against Israeli Draft of Bnei Yeshiva Rescheduled for Barclays Center:
A large asifa to protest the drafting of bnei yeshiva in Eretz Yisroel into the Israeli army that had been set to take place this month will instead be held on Sunday, 17 Sivan/June 11, at the Barclays Center in Downtown Brooklyn, NY. So attendees at a big gathering will protest an apparent change of policy that will make it much more difficult for traditional Orthodox Jewish students--both Hasidic (who follow a rebbe) and non-Hasidic (who don't)--to get deferments from the draft. Comments on the Yeshiva World website explain some of the debate.

The logistical questions

What's unclear is how large the ev…

Atlanta's Atlantic Yards moves ahead

First mentioned in April, the Atlantic Yards project in Atlanta is moving ahead--and has the potential to nudge Atlantic Yards in Brooklyn further down in Google searches.

According to a 5/30/17 press release, Hines and Invesco Real Estate Announce T3 West Midtown and Atlantic Yards:
Hines, the international real estate firm, and Invesco Real Estate, a global real estate investment manager, today announced a joint venture on behalf of one of Invesco Real Estate’s institutional clients to develop two progressive office projects in Atlanta totalling 700,000 square feet. T3 West Midtown will be a 200,000-square-foot heavy timber office development and Atlantic Yards will consist of 500,000 square feet of progressive office space in two buildings. Both projects are located on sites within Atlantic Station in the flourishing Midtown submarket.
Hines will work with Hartshorne Plunkard Architecture (HPA) as the design architect for both T3 West Midtown and Atlantic Yards. DLR Group will be t…

Not quite the pattern: Greenland selling development sites, not completed condos

Real Estate Weekly, reporting on trends in Chinese investment in New York City, on 11/18/15 quoted Jim Costello, a senior vice president at research firm Real Capital Analytics:
“They’re typically building high-end condos, build it and sell it. Capital return is in a few years. That’s something that is ingrained in the companies that have been coming here because that’s how they’ve grown in the last 35 years. It’s always been a development game for them. So they’re just repeating their business model here,” he said. When I read that last November, I didn't think it necessarily applied to Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park, now 70% owned (outside of the Barclays Center and B2 modular apartment tower), by the Greenland Group, owned significantly by the Shanghai government.
A majority of the buildings will be rentals, some 100% market, some 100% affordable, and several--the last several built--are supposed to be 50% market/50% subsidized. (See tentative timetable below.)

Selling development …