Zundel Lawyer Jailed
BERLIN — The lawyer for jailed Holocaust denier and former Toronto resident Ernst Zundel was sentenced Jan. 14 to 31/2 years in jail in Germany for denying the Holocaust while defending Zundel last year. Sylvia Stolz, 44, girlfriend of jailed right-wing extremist Horst Mahler, was also banned from working as a lawyer for five years. The Mannheim court said Stolz “lives in a make-believe world and wants to restore Germany’s honour,” and that she’s a “fanatic anti-Semite.” While defending Zundel, Stolz called the Shoah “the biggest lie in world history” and signed a court paper with the words “Heil Hitler.” She was ejected from the trial. Zundel, 68, was later convicted of Holocaust denial, and incitement to hate and anti-Semitism. He’s serving five years in jail.
Gandhi Sounds Off
WASHINGTON — The grandson of Mahatma Gandhi called Israel and Jews the “biggest players” in the world’s “culture of violence.” Nearly 500 people responded to the Jan. 7 blog entry by Arun Gandhi, part of the Washington Post/Newsweek “On Faith” weblog. Respondents were divided between those who called Gandhi an anti-Semite and those who added their own criticism of Jews and the Jewish state, as well as examinations of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. “Jewish identity in the past has been locked into the Holocaust experience,” Gandhi wrote. “It is a very good example of how a community can overplay a historic experience to the point that it begins to repulse friends.” He added that the Jewish future appears bleak, since Jews are a nation “that believes its survival can only be ensured by weapons and bombs.” In an apology posted three days later, Gandhi stood behind his criticisms of Israel’s use of violence, but said he shouldn’t have implied all Jews support it.
CHICAGO — Some 60 headstones at a Chicago Jewish cemetery were spray-painted with anti-Semitic graffiti. Swastikas and slogans such as “juden raus” (German for “Jews out”) and “Aryan Power” were found at the Westlawn Cemetery, where 46,000 people are buried. The vandalism likely happened Jan. 6, said the local sheriff, who called it a hate crime and said several people are likely responsible.
Cancer Pioneer Dies
DENVER — Dr. Judah Folkman, a ground-breaking cancer researcher, died at the age of 74. Folkman, the son of a rabbi, collapsed and died Jan. 14 of a heart attack at Denver International Airport while changing planes on the way to a medical conference in Vancouver. A Harvard University professor and director of the vascular biology program at Children’s Hospital Boston, Folkman found a revolutionary new way of fighting cancer by cutting off the blood supply to tumours. Several successful cancer drugs are based on his approach.
Anglo Docs Wanted
JERUSALEM — A fellowship program is being launched to bring more doctors to Israel. The aliyah group Nefesh B’Nefesh, along with Israel’s ministries of health and immigrant absorption, is trying to address the serious shortage of doctors projected for Israel over the next few years. The initiative targets North American- and British- trained doctors under 40. It will provide grants for the first two years in Israel totalling about $60,000. Doctors must practise at least nine months a year in Israel.