President Donald Trump listens to Vice President Mike Pence. Photo by Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

The art of the deal

Following Netanyahu’s visit to the White House, a leaked transcript of President’s Trump’s daring proposals about a final settlement between Israel and the Palestinians has come to light.

The White House has refused to comment, but Julian Assange of WikiLeaks said “more would be released very soon.” According to WikiLeaks, the following conversation took place on 22 February 2017.

Trump:” We’re gonna get the deal of the century…”

Pence:” Yeah…”

Tillerson: ”But what are we gonna do that’s new? Basically everything that’s been tried before hasn’t worked.”

Trump: “Can you summarise all the different proposals quickly, so we can review them?”

Tillerson: “Sure…hang on a minute please while I look them up.”

Trump: ”We’ll get a beautiful deal…a real beautiful deal, believe me, that will be the envy of the world.”

Tillerson: “We have the roadmap where Israel will retain major settlement blocs and the Palestinians establish a state in the West Bank and Gaza. We also have a situation where Israel trades land [in Israel] for land of equal size in the West Bank. Another scenario is Israel withdrawing completely to the pre-1967 cease fire lines in exchange for diplomatic relations with all Arab countries underwritten by American and European security guarantees. Another possibility is a single Israeli state from the Jordan River, and Jordan becomes Palestine. It already has a Palestinian majority and was Eastern Palestine before 1918. Or they can be compensated and go elsewhere—Chile already has a significant Palestinian community.

Trump: “Why did these proposals not work?”

Greenblatt: ”The Palestinians said that any agreement would not mean the end of the conflict as Israel had demanded and that they won’t recognise Israel as the nation state of the Jews. ..this was a key Israeli demand.”

Trump: That doesn’t make sense. How can you sign a final agreement that says that it’s not the end?”

Pence: ”There are a lot of things that don’t make sense Mr President.”

Tillerson:”So then, what are you proposing?”

Trump: “We have a scenario where Israel wants to be recognised as the Nation State of the Jews. The Palestinians refuse. They also want … actually I’m not really sure…but certainly they want some kind of state.”

Greenblatt: “Seems impossible to reconcile.”

Pence: “Yeah.”

Trump:” There will be a new country that can satisfy both parties. It will guarantee the aspirations of Israelis and the Palestinians. I am going to initiate a massive aid program like the Marshall Plan, but bigger. Ramallah will have the best golf course in the world…believe me…”

Greenblatt: ”With respect Mr President, massive aid projects have never worked with the Palestinians in the past.”

Trump:” They got it wrong…this will be different. I am going to get Jared to start a massive building scheme, run by a new subsidiary of Trump Towers called Trump Minarets…believe me…Ivanka will advise on fashions…stunning hijabs and burkas are going to be the envy of Paris…believe me. I will also make Palestine great again.”

Friedman:” And the Israeli demands for recognition as nation state of the Jews?”

Trump: ”I will pull of an amazing deal…believe me, just amazing.”

Tillerson: “How?”

Trump: “The new state will be called Palestein.”

Greenblatt: ”The Israelis won’t agree to that.”

Trump: Not Palestine, but Palestein… spelt differently as in s-t-e-i-n, that rhymes with Goldstein.

So, both should be happy. Sounds Jewish and retains the old name.”

Friedman: “What happens if the Israelis want to pronounce it Palesteen or Paleshtein?”

Trump: “They can pronounce it anyway they want…that’s the art of the deal. It’s about the spelling.”

Tillerson: ”And the territory?”

Trump: “All the pre-1967 West Bank and Eastern Jerusalem. That‘s what the Palestinians wanted.

And also include Israel too. It will all be Palestein.”

Greenblatt: “And the Israeli communities… settlements there?”

Trump: “They remain but will fall under the government of Palestein, which will be a federal system. There will also be a rotating system of a Jewish president and Palestinian prime minister, every four years.”

Friedman: “If the country is called Palestein, then what are the people going to be called?”

Trump: “Good question—Palesteins…rhyming with Philistines. Call Bibi and Babbi…Abbas… and tell them about our deal.”

Tillerson: “It’s already been leaked Mr President. They know.”

Trump: “What the hell..?”

Tillerson: “In fact, we already got a response from the Israelis. They say it’s an interesting idea and want to study it.”

Trump: “Great! Believe me that’s the art of the deal. A fair win for all!”

Tillerson: “Mr President, the Palestinians have already rejected it.”

Trump :”Huh?”

Tillerson: “They say Palestein sounds too Jewish.

Ron Jontof-Hutter is a Fellow at the Berlin International Center for the Study of Antisemitism and the author of the satirical novel, “The trombone man: tales of a misogynist.”


Real-life best friends Andy Samberg, Akiva Schaffer and Jorma Taccone have mastered the art of working with friends.  Together, the three created some of the most iconic viral videos that “Saturday Night Live” has featured in years.

Now, moving on to bigger screens the three, who call themselves The Lonely Island, star in POPSTAR: NEVER STOP NEVER STOPPING, which they also wrote and directed.  It’s a mockumentary filled with back-to-back celebrity cameos and start-to-finish laughter.  The trio managed to get half of Hollywood to sign onto their project: P!nk, Michael Bolton, Mariah Carey, Maya Rudolph, Sarah Silverman and many more.

For more about POPSTAR: NEVER STOP NEVER STOPPING take a look below…

—>Looking for the direct link to the video?  Click here.

‘Gaza Girls’ spoof of Palestinian propaganda flagged as incitement in Spain

A Spanish judge recommended the prosecution for incitement to violence of a person who shared on Facebook an Israeli-made music video spoofing Palestinian propaganda.

The No. 1 Court of First Instance and Instruction of Tudela, a municipality located about 200 miles northeast of Madrid, recommended Tuesday the indictment of the unnamed resident, the Noticias de Navarra daily reported.

The reason cited was the resident’s sharing of a 2014 video titled “Kill All the Jews” by the “Gaza Girls” – a fictional Palestinian girl group invented and headed by Orit Arfa, an Israeli artist and right-wing settler activist.

Arfa’s Internet videos, many of which she stars in, include the controversial “Gaza Wrecking Ball” and “Jews Can’t Stop” — both interpretations of Miley Cyrus hits. She was among 9,000 Israelis who lived in Jewish settlements in the Gaza Strip before their evacuation in 2005.

Featuring lyrics likes like “exterminate the Zionists, the world will be better for it,” and “kill the Jews, it’s our turn,” the English-language video was produced to “help Hamas out and offer a more feminist, bubble-gum version of their genocidal propaganda,” Arfa wrote in 2014.

Omitting any reference to the video’s satirical nature, the Spanish court described it as “a musical video by the self-styled feminine trio ‘Gaza Girls,’ with English lyrics that incite to hatred and violence against people of the Jewish faith and against the State of Israel, sending clear messages through the lyrics as well as imagery encouraging to kill people belonging to these groups.”

The video was initially hailed by anti-Israel groups but eventually flagged as a parody, Arfa wrote in recounting the reaction. While her spoof was removed as hateful from various social networks, she wrote, the Arabic propaganda videos she was commenting were not.

The prosecution must decided whether to indict as recommended within two weeks.

Israeli parody of Taglit-Birthright Trips [VIDEO]

This season of “Eretz Nehederet,” Israel’s version of “Saturday Night Live,” features a running parody of a Birthright trip to Israel that mocks American Jews for their enthusiasm and naivite (and obesity and JAPpiness, of course) and Israelis for their gold-digging and trigger fingers. Chuckle along:

Black and Jewish (Black and Yellow Parody)

‘Bridesmaids’ Kali Hawk & ‘Vampire Diaries’ Katerina Graham shout out Drake, Lenny Kravitz, Lauren London and Rashida Jones as they pay homage to Black & Jewish celebs in a new Funny or Die video.

Black and Jewish (Black and Yellow Parody) from Kat Graham


Jew Are You? [VIDEO]

Jew Are You?

Promo for The Shtibl Minyan (‘s 2011 Purim party.

STARRING: Joel Levinson, Rachel Leah Cohen, Shachar Cohen-Hodos, Deon Cole, Maria Moreno, Rob Kutner

EDITOR: Michelle Fellner
GRAPHICS: Annette Price

The Cohen-Hodoses
The Singer-Frankeses
Sheryl Zohn
Scott Cronick

Roger, Pete, Keith, & John

It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane — Oy Gevalt, It’s a Jewish ‘Watchmen’

SAN FRANCISCO (JTA)—Who watches the watchmensch? Yes, you read that right—the comic book “Watchmen” is getting a Yiddish makeover courtesy of a British comic writer.

And in fitting with “Watchmen’s” trademark plot twists and surprising revelations, “Watchmensch” has one of its own: Although it’s crammed with Yiddish dialogue, Jewish in-jokes and black hats, its creator isn’t Jewish.

Rich Johnston is known in the comics world as a sort of gossip columnist—he writes a news and rumors column called “Lying in the Gutters.” He also has written several comics of his own, including one about a 17th-century Italian monk combined with elements from the TV show “Smallville.”

Johnston, 36, came up with the idea for “Watchmensch” at a comic book convention.

“I was messing around with friends about titles of comics, and ‘Watchmensch’ is just one that got stuck in my head,” he said in a phone interview from his home in southwest London, where he lives with his wife and two children.

He had an idea for the comic as well: A parody about the murder of a Jewish lawyer. After he wrote about it in his column, Johnston received positive feedback, including an e-mail from Swedish comic artist Simon Rohrmuller, who ended up drawing the book based on Johnston’s script.

The original “Watchmen” follows a group of former superheroes in 1980s America as they investigate the murder of one of their own, the Comedian. The series deconstructs the superhero genre with groundbreaking narrative techniques and an intricate alternate-history plot.

Originally published in a 12-part series from 1986 to 1987, “Watchmen” was a major hit, and is still considered one of the greatest comics of all time. It was named one of Time magazine’s top 100 English-language novels in 2005, and the highly anticipated “Watchmen” movie opened March 6.

It was the No.1 film in America on its opening weekend, bringing in $55.7 million—the most successful opening in 2009.

Thus, it’s no surprise that the series has been parodied in works like “Botchmen,” made by Mad magazine, and now in “Watchmensch.”

“Watchmensch” follows a similar trajectory to its predecessor, starting with the death of the Comedian—known in “Watchmensch” as Krusty the Klown, in homage to the famous Jewish character on “The Simpsons.” Investigating the murder are Spottyman (a takeoff on “Watchmen’s” Rorschach) and Jewish lawyers Nite Nurse (Nite Owl) and Silk Taker (Silk Spectre).

Along the way are numerous insider references to the history of “Watchmen” and comics in general, with particular emphasis on the industry’s Jewish roots.

“It’s a parody of ‘Watchmen,’ the comic book and the movie, and also a satire on the comic book industry, how the artists and the industry worked together for the past 70 years,” Johnston says.

The Jewish theme worked perfectly, he adds, because the history of the comic book is filled with Jewish names—among them Captain America creators Joe Simon and Jack Kirby (born Jacob Kurtzberg), Superman’s Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, and Batman’s Bob Kane (born Robert Kahn).

Siegel and Shuster even make an appearance in “Watchmensch,” in a flashback to the day when they famously sold the rights to the Superman character to DC Comics for a mere $130.

Because Johnston isn’t Jewish, he wanted to be sure he was making an accurate portrayal.

“Once I got [a Jewish element], I’d go online and make sure I got it right,” he says. “I was also able to run skits past a few [Jewish] friends.”

The Jewish elements include Yiddish terms and Chasidic-style clothing, with Spottyman sporting payes and a black hat, and Silk Taker in a modest, high-necked dress. A pet named Balabusta also has a cameo, as does a can of Dr. Brown’s black cherry soda, a classic Jewish icon.

Johnston says the irony is that “I give the most Jewish lines to Spottyman, who’s not Jewish. It’s this secret identity he’s put on.”

Keeping things hidden, he says, is a common theme in comic-book history.

“Even in the early days of superhero comics, Judaism was there but it was disguised,” Johnston explains. “Even the Thing in the Fantastic Four—he was Jewish, but it was never actually said. Only within the last few years was it finally said, ‘Ben Grimm is Jewish.’ It’s long overdue.”

Rachel Freedenberg is a staff writer for the j. weekly.

MUSIC VIDEO: ‘All I want for Christmas is Jews’

Relax—it’s comedy

Approximate lyrics:

I just want you for my own
More than you could ever know
Make my wish come true
All I want for Christmas is…

I wont ask for much this Christmas
I dont even wish for snow
Just want a Jew who runs show business
Speilberg, Stiller Ari Gold
I will make a list and send it
Of my choices for St. Nick
Seinfeld, Zach Braff and Jon Stewart
Are the boys with a big schtick.
Cause I just want them here tonight
Holding on to me so tight
Ill take Zac Efron too
all I want for Christmas is Jews.

Menorah lights are shining
So brightly everywhere
And the big box office
Makes Jews millionaires
They may have killed our savior
Thats not the best behavior
Thats ok he rose again three days later
and now Im an active J-dater

Oh I dont want a lot for Christmas
Gentile boys are such a bore
Goldman, Weissman, Cohen, Levy
These are names that I adore
Oh I just want a chosen one
Hebrew boys are so much fun
Make my wish come true
Baby all I want for Christmas is


Comedy trio HotBox is behind the video:

Style: Stand-Up
Joined: February 07, 2007
Last Sign In: 2 hours ago
Videos Watched: 586
Subscribers: 48
Channel Views: 2,469

HOT BOX is a comedy variety show starring stand-up comedians Julia Lillis, Claudia Maittlen-Harris and Melissa McQueen. The show is kind of like that Rosie O’Donnell variety show… only funny. And fewer fat chicks. We’ve got sketches, stand-up, videos, singing (off key), dancing (out of sync)…

Basically, there is so much awesome stuff in a Hot Box show that we better watch out or we might get hijacked by Somali pirates.

You may have seen/heard HOT BOX at/on…
– 2008 Edinburgh Fringe
– 2008 Los Angeles Comedy Festival
– 2006 New York Underground Comedy Festival
– National Lampoon Radio
– Maxim Radio
– drinking at a bar near you


MUSIC VIDEO: Captain SmartyPants — ‘The Driedel Song’

Captain Smartypants, a Seattle Men’s Chorus Ensemble, makes the Yuletide fun in Home For the Holidays. Visit the Seattle Channel website for more great shows like this.


VIDEO: Heeb Olympics 2008 — Gefilte Fish Wrestling

Four modern-day gladiators do battle for the gold (a lifetime supply of Gold’s mustard) in the Heeb Olympics. For more information, check out

Israeli TV commercial for HDTV

This Israeli television commercial for HDTV has kippot spinning all over Ha’Aretz!

Theater: Musical ‘Boyz’ you won’t find next door

Surely, there are those of you out there privately lamenting the demise of the boy bands of the 1980s and ’90s — the New Kids on the Block and ‘N Syncs of the world. Well, you are in luck: A new band is coming to town. And you do not have to be a swooning teenage girl to go watch it perform.

“Altar Boyz,” the off-Broadway hit, is coming to the Wadsworth Theatre for nearly two weeks, starting Feb. 13. The show is a 90-minute spoof on boy bands filled with high-energy singing and dancing and irreverent humor.

The twist? The story centers on a Christian guy-group intent on saving the souls of the audience.

The group consists of an assortment of types, as every proper boy band should. There’s Matthew, the leader; Mark, the sensitive one; Luke, the bad boy, and Juan, the Latin lover. Oh, and there’s one more: Abraham, the Jew, or as the script calls him, “the gefilte fish out of water.”

Abraham’s presence in the group makes for fine comedy, but it also deepens the message of the musical parody, making a statement about the power of religion to bring people together.

Wearing a yarlmulke and Star of David medallion around his neck, Abraham is both part of the band and an outsider. He shares with the others a belief in God.

However, when he introduces himself at the start of the show, the other band members point out his difference: “He’s Jewish!” And when the others make the sign of the cross, Abraham traces in the air a Star of David.

Abraham gets big laughs during a flashback scene that shows how the band got started. Abraham walks into a church, where he finds a group of altar boys. One asks him, “Are Jewish people even allowed in the church?”

“I think so,” Abraham answers. “I just saw one on the cross above the altar.” Ba-dum-bum.

Marc Kessler, who conceived the show, along with Ken Davenport, said they first conceptualized a four-person band. But then they realized they could add “the outsider” archetype, and who would better fit that than a Jewish character?

“We didn’t want to make him a Jew for Jesus,” said Kessler, 35. Instead, Abraham would be a character who stays faithful to Judaism despite joining the band.

“This is going to sound corny,” Kessler said by phone from New York, “but to me, the essence of religion is bringing people together for a common good. Abraham saw that these [Christian] guys were doing good, were coming together despite their differences.”

So, in the spirit of brotherhood and for a love of pop music, Abraham joined them, he said.

One of the show’s producers, Robyn Goodman, played a critical role in keeping the character more real than stereotypical, Kessler said. Originally, the creators had Abraham’s mother checking up on her son throughout the show, monitoring what he was eating and making sure that he was doing OK. Goodman, who is Jewish, challenged the creators to dig deeper than that, Kessler said.

In the end, Kessler, a Catholic, and the creative team fashioned a Jewish character whom Kessler called a “cool guy” with “dignity” and a “great sense of who he is.”

“Altar Boyz” opened in New York in March 2005 and has been running ever since. Nick Blaemire, 22, plays Abraham in the show’s national tour, which began last October.

Blaemire, who considers himself half-Jewish, because his mother is Jewish but his father is not, described his character as “a bit of an outsider and an intellectual in the best and worst senses of the word: He is socially awkward but has his moments of brilliance.”

Abraham tries to act urban but does not quite pull it off. He raps, makes the peace sign and says things like “mazzletozzle, yo!” He wears a Magen David chain — Blaemire called it his “Star of David bling” — a blue T-shirt emblazoned with an Israeli flag and green cargo pants. Costume designer Gail Brassard was going for the Israeli army look, Blaemire said.

Abraham has his moments in the spotlight, leading the band in a song about everybody fitting in, for example. And ultimately, Abraham emerges as the hero of the show.

That makes Blaemire a hero, too. On a MySpace blog dedicated to “Altar Boyz,” girls fawn over the character, calling him “adorable,” “such a cute guy” and “so cool.”

“We loved all of the ‘BOYZ’ but my fave had to be Abraham (Nick),” gushed one fan. “We got to meet them all after the show, and they are just as cool in real life.”

What can we say to that but, “mazzletozzle, yo!”

“Altar Boyz” will be at the Wadsworth Theatre from Feb. 13-25. Performances are Tuesday through Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $28-$58 and are on sale at ‘ TARGET=’_blank’>