November 29: The Jewish Thanksgiving Day

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Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Emboldened by UNESCO’s vote last week, the BDS propagandists have decided to take another bite at Jewish history and divert it to further their aims. News reaches us that they plan campus activities against the two historical events that occurred in November: (1) The Balfour Declaration, Nov. 2, 1917, and (2) the UN Partition Resolution, Nov. 29, 1947.

Their cronies may soon arrive at your campus with lectures and exhibits on why these two events were aggressive acts of colonialism.  The message below proposes a way of countering their distortions with facts and pride. It is called: “November 29, A Jewish Thanksgiving Day”, and it involves celebrating that event visibly on your campus.

The idea is summarized in the following articles from the Los Angeles Jewish Journal:

True, time is short, only 3 weeks remain for November 29.

But all it takes is for one energetic Hillel Director (or an enlightened Director of a Center for Jewish Studies) to invite his buddies from across campus to attend a celebration of the historical UN vote, and let Jewish students and faculty on campus  thank them (as representatives of their countries) for voting their conscience when the fate of the Jewish people was in the balance.

The program should not take more than a couple of tables with Baklawa, two guitars, 33 flags, a movie projector, and three readers/actors, one to read the resolution, one to re-enact the vote ( from Australia-Yes to Yugoslavia – Abstained,) and one to read Amos Oz description of his street  in Jerusalem.

Then personal accounts by attendees on what the Vote means to them.The rest would be recorded in the campus archives as the day that students (Jewish and Gentiles alike) got a genuine glimpse at the history of the Middle East.

I hope it works out for you, and do not forget to invite Brazilian students for the incredible role that Oswaldo Aranha (the president of the assembly) played on that day.

November 29: The Jewish Thanksgiving Day

  • Source: Scholars for Peace in the Middle East (SPME)b
  • Originally published on 11/11/2016
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Judea Pearl

Judea Pearl was born in Tel Aviv and is a graduate of the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology. He came to the United States for postgraduate work in 1960, and the following year he received a master’s degree in electrical engineering from Newark College of Engineering, now New Jersey Institute of Technology. In 1965, he simultaneously received a master’s degree in physics from Rutgers University and a PhD from the Brooklyn Polytechnic Institute, now Polytechnic Institute of New York University. Until 1969, he held research positions at RCA David Sarnoff Research Laboratories in Princeton, New Jersey and Electronic Memories, Inc. Hawthorne, California.

Pearl joined the faculty of UCLA in 1969, where he is currently a professor of computer science and statistics and director of the Cognitive Systems Laboratory. He is known internationally for his contributions to artificial intelligence, human reasoning, and philosophy of science. He is the author of more than 350 scientific papers and three landmark books in his fields of interest: Heuristics (1984), Probabilistic Reasoning (1988), and Causality (2000; 2009).

A member of the National Academy of Engineering and a founding Fellow of the American Association for Artificial Intelligence, Pearl is the recipient of numerous scientific prizes, including three awarded in 2011: the Association for Computing Machinery A.M. Turing Award for his fundamental contributions to artificial intelligence through the development of a calculus for probabilistic and causal reasoning; the David E. Rumelhart Prize for Contributions to the Theoretical Foundations of Human Cognition, and the Harvey Prize in Science and Technology from Technion – Israel Institute of Technology. Other honors include the 2001 London School of Economics Lakatos Award in Philosophy of Science for the best book in the philosophy of science, the 2003 ACM Allen Newell Award for “seminal contributions that extend to philosophy, psychology, medicine, statistics, econometrics, epidemiology and social science”, and the 2008 Benjamin Franklin Medal for Computer and Cognitive Science from the Franklin Institute.

Pearl is the father of slain Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl and president of the Daniel Pearl Foundation, which he co-founded with his family in February 2002 “to continue Daniel’s life-work of dialogue and understanding and to address the root causes of his tragedy.” The Daniel Pearl Foundation sponsors journalism fellowships aimed at promoting honest reporting and East-West understanding, organizes worldwide concerts that promote inter-cultural respect, and sponsors public dialogues between Jews and Muslims to explore common ground and air grievances. The Foundation received Search for Common Ground’s Award For Promoting Cross-Cultural Understanding in 2002 and the 2003 Roger E. Joseph Prize for its “distinctive contribution to humanity.”

Judea Pearl and his wife Ruth Pearl are co-editors of the book “I am Jewish: Personal Reflections Inspired by the Last Words of Daniel Pearl,” winner of the 2004 National Jewish Book Award for Anthologies, which provides a panoramic view of how Jews define themselves in the post 9/11 era.

Professors Pearl and Akbar Ahmed (American University), the founders of the Daniel Pearl Dialogue for Muslim-Jewish Understanding, were co-winners in 2006 of the Civic Ventures’ inaugural Purpose Prize, which honors individuals 60 or older who have demonstrated uncommon vision in addressing community and national problems.

Pearl lectures throughout the United States on topics including:

1. I am Jewish: Personal Reflections Inspired by the Last Words of Daniel Pearl

2. Being Western, American and Jewish in the Post 9/11 Era

3. Creating Dialogue between Muslims and Jews

4. The Ideological War on Terror

5. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict: The Case for Co-Existence

He has written commentaries about these topics for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, The Boston Globe, The International Herald Tribune, The Daily Star (Beirut), The Saudi Gazette (Jeddah), and the Jerusalem Post. He writes a monthly column for the Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles and is frequently interviewed on major TV and radio stations.

Read all stories by Judea Pearl