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Wiesenthal Center names UK’s Corbyn top anti-Semite of 2019

“I’ve chased Nazis, Neo Nazis, Hezbollah supporters, Jew haters of all kinds all over the world mate! 😎

The French Foreign Legion. Real Neo Nazi head cases, absolute head bangers from Poland, Ukraine, Czech… Believe Europe should have a Fourth Reich and exterminate every Jew. Training for it in the toughest military in the world.

Brazil and South America… where The Nazi Fourth Reich is still alive and flourishing, financed by the likes of Mossack Fonseca 😉… The children and grand children of actual Nazis… With names such as Adolf.

Hezbollah in Cuba, in London… making enough explosives to destroy a few blocks…

What scares me about what the left are doing and saying in the UK is… THEY HONESTLY DON’T THINK WHAT THEIR DOING AND SAYING IS DANGEROUS!

LABOUR SUPPORTERS CALL OUT CORBYN’S COMMENTS FOR ANTISEMITISM

By TAMAR BEERI

Anti-Brexit march attended by Labour Party supporters, 2019.. (photo credit:” Wikimedia Commons)

“The Jews are always coming up with this stuff.”

The Israel Advocacy Movement (IAM) took to a left-wing rally ahead of the UK’s elections and filmed protesters’ reactions to antisemitic comments and acts by Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn, disguised as having been by Prime Minister and Conservative Party leader Boris Johnson.

The presentor read out comments and events that had happened in relation to Corbyn, but replaced his name with Johnson’s. In the first incident, he told of Corbyn’s endorsement of a book from the early 20th century which suggests that banks were controlled by Jews.

Corbyn wrote the foreword for the book in which he said that the European economy was controlled “by men of a single and peculiar race,” according to Independent.

One protester said that it does not surprise him that Boris Johnson would say such a thing because “they both seem to rewrite history,” while another said that nothing that Johnson does surprises him anymore.

The next headline they spoke of was in early April, although the event took place in 2011, in which Corbyn defended an Israeli-Arab heate preacher named Raed Salah when he was deported from the UK. He said that Western governments should stand up to “the Zionist lobby” when defending the man who had previously suggested that Jews used the blood of European children to make holy bread, and who had been arrested previously for channeling money to Hamas.

Every protester interviewed said that anyone who supports such a person should not be voted in for Parliament. One protester said, “Had that been in the Labour Party, they would have been expected to resign or make a public statement and resign.”

After these comments, the presenter revealed to the protesters that the events were about Corbyn.

“I don’t know much about it, but the Jews have got a lot of money and a lot of power, haven’t they?” said one protester in response. “They do manipulate things. Power is money.”

“Does it concern you that 50% of British Jews are considering leaving the country?” the presenter asked.

One protester said that “the Jews are always coming up with this stuff.”

“Where are they going to go, to Palestine?” another asked in response. “Why are they scared of [Jeremy Corbyn,] because they’ve got all these offshore accounts and they don’t want to pay any tax?”

The presenter asked them if they still believe that Corbyn should be allowed in Parliament.

One woman openly changed her mind, saying, “No, I don’t, to be honest.” Another protester said that he does not believe that Corbyn is “strong enough.”

Other protesters stuck their ground, such as one who said, “I still think you should vote Labour,” and another who told the presenter that he does not approve of the trick used to produce the video.

Corbyn apologized on Tuesday for the antisemitism in his party on Tuesday after a television host prompted him several times to “just say sorry.”

According to a YouGov poll commissioned by the Campaign Against Antisemitism, 67% of British adults who support Corbyn “hold at least one antisemitic view.”

LABOUR CALLS THE RANKING ‘RIDICULOUS AND GROSSLY OFFENSIVE’

Wiesenthal Center names UK’s Corbyn top anti-Semite of 2019

Ahead of Thursday’s British elections, Labour chief placed above US synagogue killer on group’s annual list; rabbi warns electing him would make UK a ‘pariah’

By TOI STAFFToday, 4:57 am  7

Britain's opposition Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn holds his party's manifesto book aloft as he addresses a crowd outside the venue of a general election campaign event in Swansea, south Wales on December 7, 2019. (DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS / AFP)

Britain’s opposition Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn holds his party’s manifesto book aloft as he addresses a crowd outside the venue of a general election campaign event in Swansea, south Wales on December 7, 2019. (DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS / AFP

The Simon Wiesenthal Center named UK Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn as its the top anti-Semitic person or event for 2019, and warned that Britain would become a “pariah” if it elects the hard-left leader as prime minister this week.

Jewish groups and others have rung alarm bells over the prospect of Corbyn’s promotion to 10 Downing Street with increasing distress as the December 12 British election has approached, accusing him of allowing a massive rise in anti-Semitism within the ranks of the party and of being anti-Semitic himself.

“‘No one has done more to mainstream antisemitism into the political and social life of a democracy than the Jeremy Corbyn-led Labour Party,” Rabbi Marvin Hier, the head of the Los Angeles-based Simon Wiesenthal Center, told the British Daily Mail.

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“If Jeremy Corbyn wins, he will make Britain a pariah on the world stage,” Hier said. “To have a person seeking the highest office who ignored anti-Semitism for years, who did everything in his power to encourage it is shocking.”

Dean and founder of the Simon Wiesenthal Center Rabbi Marvin Hier seen at Fox 2000 Pictures special screening of ‘The Book Thief’ held at the Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Museum of Tolerance, on Saturday, November, 2, 2013 in Los Angeles. (Photo by Eric Charbonneau/Invision for Twentieth Century Fox/AP Images)

Hier, whose center is named for the famous Nazi Hunter Wiesenthal, also appeared to compare the dangers of Corbyn to those of Nazi Germany, saying people cannot stay silent. “We don’t want to get it wrong again. We cannot sit back and watch this happen again.”

This is not the first time Corbyn has found himself on the annual list, which also includes anti-Israel events. In 2016, Labour anti-Semitism under Corbyn was listed as No. 2 by the Center, behind the US abstention on a UN vote on West Bank settlements. In 2017, Labour anti-Semitism placed 10th and last year Corbyn was listed as No. 4.

The list is normally published in late December or early January; the earlier release this year may have been timed to come out ahead of the upcoming UK vote.

Corbyn’s placement on the list was first reported by the conservative Mail on Sunday tabloid, which devoted a full page to it.

Jack @Conservative_JA · 23h

The Simon Wiesenthal Center, the most prominent Nazi Hunter association in the world, has concluded that Jeremy Corbyn’s #Labour Party is the biggest threat worldwide to Jews. Absolute indictment of the Party’s failure to act on, and promotion of, anrisemitism.

Rik W  #BackBoris #GetBrexitDone@Rik_J_W

View image on Twitter

1110:23 PM – Dec 7, 2019

Corbyn’s placement on the list puts him ahead of John Earnest, a far-right gunman accused of opening fire inside a California synagogue in April, killing one.

Labour responded by calling the ranking ” ridiculous and grossly offensive.”

In this April 28, 2019 file photo, a San Diego county sheriff’s deputy stands in front of the Poway Chabad Synagogue in Poway, California, following a shooting that left one woman dead and wounded three others. (AP Photo/Denis Poroy, File)

“Putting Jeremy Corbyn at the head of a list containing neo-Nazi synagogue shooters is a transparent political attack and has nothing to do with tackling antisemitism,” a spokesperson said, according to the Mail.

On Thursday, a dossier from the Jewish Labour Movement accused Corbyn of personally engaging in anti-Semitism in nine separate cases.

The accusation was featured in a damning 53-page report filed to a body tasked with probing anti-Semitism within the UK’s main opposition party.

Thousands of cases of alleged hate speech against Jews have been recorded within Labour since 2015, when Corbyn was elected to lead it. The party is currently being formally investigated by the UK’s anti-racism watchdog.

Corbyn has insisted that he is not anti-Semitic and his party has dealt with the problem. Last week, he said he was “sorry for everything that has happened” regarding the ongoing tensions between his Labour Party and the British Jewish community, after earlier refusing to say so when repeatedly asked by the BBC’s Andrew Neil.

Conservative Prime Minister Boris Johnson ha refused to be interviewed by Neil.

Illustrative: Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis gives a speech as he attends a Holocaust Memorial Day Ceremony at Central Hall Westminster, January 27, 2015. (AP/Chris Jackson)

Last month, Britain’s Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis took an unprecedented stand urging voters to see the “new poison” that has taken root in the Labour party, and expressing fear for the fate of Jews in the country should Corbyn become prime minister.

Much of the worry over Corbyn is spurred by revelations about his record that have emerged since he became Labour leader. These include him describing Hamas and Hezbollah as “friends”; defending an anti-Semitic mural in East London; and a seeming willingness to associate with alleged anti-Semites, terrorists, and Holocaust-deniers.

Illustrative: Anti-Israel activists react outside a meeting of the Labour National Executive Committee in London, September 4, 2018. (Stefan Rousseau/PA via AP)

The Britain Elects poll aggregator has put the Conservatives on 42 percent, Labour on 33 percent and the Liberal Democrats on 13 percent.

Conservative Prime Minister Boris Johnson called the snap election — the third in Britain in nearly five years — last month to try to get a parliamentary majority which would enable him to secure backing for his Brexit deal.

EXCLUSIVE: Hamas’ Ties with Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party Election Efforts

By Baruch Yedid / TPS – 11 Kislev 5780 – December 8, 20190

Cartoons on JewishPress.com

Photo Credit: Majdi Fathi/TPS

Hamas terrorists in an anti-Israel show in southern Gaza Strip. Gaza, Nov 11, 2019.

Hamas officials in the Gaza Strip and London’s Hamas institutions have joined forces to support Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party, ahead of the upcoming UK elections this week.

One of Corbyn’s largest support networks has been managed from the Gaza Strip, with the knowledge and involvement of the Hamas leadership, TPS has learned.



The multifaceted relationship between Hamas and the Labour Party exists through a large number of organizations, forums, media outlets and activities on social networks. These Hamas organizations are actively engaged in the efforts in recent weeks to secure Corbyn’s election.

The “We support Jeremy Corbyn” Facebook page, with some 72,000 followers, is one of the largest and most important of the Corbyn support organizations across the world.

Walid Abu Rouk, a resident of Khan Yunis in the Gaza Strip, managed the page for over two years. In June 2017, Labour activists decided to add Abu Rouk as a manager to the page, declaring him their representative in the Gaza Strip.

Labour activists have conducted several fundraising campaigns for his projects in Gaza during this time. Labour activists describe Abu Rouk as a staunch supporter of Corbyn and declared that he is “our man in Gaza.”

Speaking to TPS, Abu Rouk said he had served as the page manager until recently, but he still maintains relationships with Corbyn’s party activists.

Labour activists in London have directed supporters to contact Abu Rouk and receive information and publications from him, but he is no simple social activist. The findings and evidence indicate that his relationship with Labour does not exist in a vacuum. Abu Rouk is a central link within the hidden relationship that serves Hamas in its political relations with Labour, and that may be what prompted Labour activists to appoint him as the director of the Facebook page from the Gaza Strip.

A source in the Gaza Strip told TPS that “Abu Rouk serves Hamas’ information campaign and is guided by it.”

Another official in the Gaza Strip, who asked to speak on condition of anonymity, told TPS that Abu Rouk is an important link in Hamas’ English-language propaganda system and that he operates under Hamas’ guidance. As a violent terror dictatorship, Hamas does not allow free media activity in the Gaza Strip.

Additional research conducted by TPS through a third-party conduit with Hamas officials, also indicates that Abu Rouk operates under Hamas’ directive and is being guided by it because of his command of the English language.

In recent years, Hamas’ internal security apparatus has placed its people in the offices of important media outlets in the Gaza Strip and in control of Facebook pages. News site owners and page managers on social networks have been required to give Hamas members access to their sites’ domains and management of their social media pages.

The same is true of Abu Rouk, one of the founders of the GP + media site in the Gaza Strip. The reporters writing for the site are supervised by Muhammad Ibrahim Madhun, a journalist who is often quoted by leading international media outlets as a Hamas affiliate. Madhun is also involved in illegal activities. A source in the Gaza Strip claims that several years ago, Madhun hosted a planning session of the Hamas military wing in one of the GP + offices. The office was bombed shortly afterward by Israel.

Abu Rouk said in a phone call with TPS that he writes for Aljazeera, the Qatari news network affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood, for the PALESTINE 24 website and for the Middle East Eye website. These sites are affiliated with Hamas.

Abu Rouk also writes for the London-based Memo Monitor newspaper, which is considered one of the UK’s Muslim Brotherhood’s media sites. Memo’s editor is Daoud Abdullah, one of the Muslim Brotherhood’s top British leaders. Another senior official is Ibrahim Hewitt, who is also affiliated with the Brotherhood in the UK.

Memo monitor writers often express support for Corbyn and the Labour party, and the party receives particularly sympathetic coverage by the Memo website.

Speaking to TPS, Abu Rouk specifically stated that he agrees to work with the Israeli media, which he usually boycotts, only if it is done through the Memo office in London.

Another senior reporter at Memo is Motasem Dalloul, a resident of the Gaza Strip. Dalloul edits the website “Days of Palestine” which is affiliated with Hamas. A source in the Gaza Strip reports that Dalloul is one of the leaders of Hamas’ English language propaganda campaign. He also edits the English content on Hamas’ official Al-Risala website.

Abu Rouk readily admits to his work in the various media outlets, which are affiliated with Hamas, and the fact that he ran the Corbyn support page, alongside Labour activists, but he denies any connection to Dalloul. Dalloul also claims that he does not know Abu Rouk. The two, residents of the Gaza Strip, work for the same newspapers, which express open support for Corbyn and identify with Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood, yet they deny any connection or acquaintance. However, when Dalloul was injured several years ago, Abu Rouk took to social media to post his well wishes and prayers for his “dearest friend” Dalloul.

In addition to his activities in media outlets of extreme Islamic nature, Abu Rouk advocates for the boycott of the Israeli media. Like him, Corbyn’s support page is boycotting important British media sources and prohibits the uploading of content or links from the Daily Mail and the London Sun.

Abu Rouk is a BDS activist involved in several BDS organizations. He writes for Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP), an organization known for its extreme left positions and its support for boycotts of Israel and its ties with BDS movement. He also promotes the so-called Freedom Flotillas to the Gaza Strip on behalf of a British organization called Viva Palestina.

Viva Palestina was founded by former British Labour Member of Parliament George Galloway, who was expelled from the party over anti-Semitism. Kevin O’Banden, the association’s secretary-general, met with Hamas leader Khaled Mashal in the Gaza Strip in 2009, as Galloway’s deputy.

Another one of the organizers in the flotilla effort is Khadijah Hassan, a supporter of Corbyn.

Hassan, British in origin, converted to Islam and moved to the Gaza Strip under the auspices of the Hamas Religious Scholars Association. She is active in Labour and most of her activities are in the boycott organizations against Israel.

Viva Palestina, which is registered in the UK, operates under the instructions of senior Hamas official Zaher Birawi, who has also been identified by Israel’s security service as one of the top Hamas representatives in the United Kingdom. A source in the Gaza Strip told TPS that Birawi is responsible for all Hamas-UK relations and they call him the holder of the “Corbyn-Hamas file.”

Thousands attend Westminster antisemitism protest

Actress Tracy Ann Oberman told the crowd: ‘The Jewish community are caught between the pincer grip of the far right and the hard left.’

By MATHILDE FROTDecember 8, 2019, 4

Thousands braved the cold weather on Sunday to join a rally against antisemitism which organisers said attracted around 3,200 people.

Protesters held placards marked “Together against antisemitism” and some bearing slogans such as “Antisemitism = Racism / Mr Corbyn – J’accuse” and “racist Corbyn unfit to be PM” during the rally in Parliament Square led by Campaign Against Antisemitism.

The group said some had travelled from Glasgow, Liverpool, Wales and Manchester for the demonstration which sought to raise awareness of growing “Jew-hatred in politics and mounting anti-Jewish hate crime.”

Gideon Falter, chief executive of Campaign Against Antisemitism, told the crowd: “Today we are here in this square standing before the Mother of Parliaments in the country of the Magna Carta, the country that stood alone as a light in Europe as the hatred of Nazi Germany enveloped the continent.

“We stand here to say that Britain is better than this. We stand here to ask all of the people of our country to stand with us.”

52-year-old Daniel Anderson, from New Southgate, said the event was his first rally against antisemitism.

“I haven’t previously been to rallies that they’ve held in the past. I thought that this time we really need to make a stand,” he told Jewish News.

“I’m certainly not a supporter of a Conservative government. On the other hand, what we’re talking here is so fundamental to the future, not just of Jews, but I think of many right minded people that frankly, there is a major concern on what the outcome could be next week,” he added, in an apparent reference to the 12 December poll.

Placard held at Westminster protest against antisemitism

Sara Gibbs, 32, a vocal antisemitism campaigner on social media, said the rally was an opportunity to meet and show solidarity with others amid what she described as a “stressful and difficult time” for the Jewish community.

“I think sometimes just the feeling of togetherness and feeling like there are other people around to understand what you’re going through, it’s really important, because you know when you’re online and you’re fighting this stuff, it can feel very isolating and even if you’re in the community online you’re still seeing your laptop at home,” she said.

Also at the protest, 23-year-old student Louis Elton, from Bayswater, said: “I came [to the rally] because my family are Jewish and I find it very upsetting that antisemitism is going to be drowned out as one issues of many.”

Actress Tracy Ann Oberman, who has been a vocal critic of the Labour Party over the antisemitism row, delivered an emotive speech punctuated by applause from protesters.

She said: “The Jewish community are caught between the pincer grip of the far right and the hard left. Things that used to be mumbled into pints of beers in pubs, or behind closed doors of gentlemen clubs are now spoken about and shared freely, without shame.

“I myself have been called a Jewish b**ch, a Zio shill, a paid Israeli Mossad operative with too many shekels in my bank account, that I speak out because I am a tax evader, that like all Jews, I just want to hide my money. I am a zio w**re, and a babe killer.

“Every day I wake up to a barrage of abuse online because I will not shut up. I will not be intimidated, and I will not go away.”

Tracy Ann Oberman (Credit: Nathan Lilienfeld)

She added: “This is our home. We don’t want to go anywhere. We don’t have to go anywhere. We have a right to be here. We have a right to feel heard. We have a right to feel welcome, and we have a right to feel safe.”

Barrister and TV personality Robert Rinder, whose grandfather was a Holocaust survivor, told the crowd: “The fact that you are here is an act of courage.

“It is a tragedy itself that it needs to be an act of courage. Being a Jew shouldn’t be an act of courage, not just the rich gifts, the threads that we’ve sewn into the tapestry of our incredible country.

“The tragedy is, that’s how it feels today. That’s how it feels to be Jewish, that to be Jewish requires us to be brave, that to be Jewish is something which is dirty furtive and dangerous. Well, we’re here today to say that it’s not.”

“The reality is there are millions out there, millions people of goodwill of every creed of every class of every background of every single religion that understands that what starts in a mural ends in murder,” he added.

The rally featured two non-Jewish speakers, including interfaith campaigner Fiyaz Mughal, founder of the group Muslims Against Antisemitism, who warned antisemitism was “the canary in the coal mine”.

“Not only is that a fact that it doesn’t start and stop there, it affects all of us, and that is why it is essential that we all people our faith and people of no faith, stand up for the decent human centred British values that we are defending at this election,” he said.

“You fought for my rights as a person from a different community coming to live in this country, you invested in this country. You gave up a lot of what your future was for people like me so I take my hat off to you today. And for every day that I’m in this country because my Jewish brothers and sisters have given me a life,” he added.

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Live And Let Tomorrow Never Be Another Day To Die Twice

To be honest, I’m more inclined to see ‘Mossad!’… 😆😅😂🤣

#29leaks: someone leaked 15 years’ worth of data from London’s most notorious shell-company factory

 Cory Doctorow5 months ago

Formations House is a London “financial services” firm that has been implicated in some of the world’s most notorious money-laundering and fraud schemes, a company that has formed more than 400,000 companies, trusts and partnerships for its customers, many of them prefabricated, anonymous “shelf companies” that have been used to disguise the parties behind breathtaking frauds, some perpetrated by corrupt heads of state.

A consortium of journalists and journalistic organizations is in receipt of 15 years’ worth of data from Formations House (courtesy of the activist group Distributed Denial of Secrets), totalling 85gb (mailboxes of “specific employees of interest”; SQL table for every email received by the firm; faxes; phone messages; and miscellanea). They’ve formed a coalition with other news orgs, including Propublica, CNN, The Daily Beast, and the Columbia Review of Journalism, to sort through the leaks and report out the stories they find there. They’ve also offered to search their database on behalf of nonaffiliated journalists and anti-corruption officials who want a peek.

It’s hard to overstate how notorious and suspicious the firm is: for one thing, one of its directors was convicted of using an anonymous Formations House shell company to launder proceeds from a Spanish Prisoner fraud (!!). Formations House companies were also the vehicle of choice for corrupt Ukrainian dictator Viktor Yanukovych, who used them in many ways, including to assume ownership of vast state assets that he’d stolen.

The consortium hopes that their reporting will end up with the return of vast sums stolen from poor nations. They writes, “If even one of the ‘400,000 companies, partnerships, and trusts’ Formations notes having set up for its clients since the turn of the century are discovered to serve a similar function, and the stolen funds returned to the developing the nation that can scarce afford to have lost them, this project will have served its purpose.”

As it happens, we can expect more. In the 48 hours since we began recruiting press for early access, we’ve brought on journalists from outlets like ProPublica, CNN, The Daily Beast, and the Columbia Review of Journalism, with further partnerships arranged in principle with CounterPunch and Investigative Journal. Over time, we’ll be expanding access to the entire cache on the part of both traditional outlets and experiment research collectives of the sort Emma Best and I have been overseeing in similar contexts for nearly a decade, along with many of our volunteers. To ensure the greatest yield and accommodate the widest possible access, we’ll also be allowing journalists and anti-corruption officials who may be precluded from engaging with such leaks directly to instead submit names and other keywords to be searched by our team, with any responsive documents to be securely relayed back to the inquirer.

Other special requests, along with press inquiries/requests for access and questions about volunteering for this and similar projects, should reach out to Distributed Denial of Secrets via their contact page.

This London Firm Helps the Wealthy Hide Assets – or Steal Them. Luckily We Have 15 Years of Their Client Communications. [Barrett Brown/Counterpunch]

(via Naked Capitalism)

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Expo 2020: Empowering women to make a difference

“I always try and share my secrets with the female of the species… not in an attempt to get laid (although that is always a bonus), but in order to try and bring balance back into the world! We’ve lived in a matriarchal society for thousands of years, abused the divine feminine, it’s led to environmental destruction and brought us to the brink of WW3… … … I should join the ‘Lady Freemasons!’ 😆😂🤣

Seriously though, whatever I share with women, I expect you to use it as a woman… Not as a CIA agent, or as MI6, or as an Israeli or whatever… AS A WOMAN!

(I hear the new 00 agent is a woman)


Expo 2020: Empowering women to make a difference

With half of Expo’s workforce being women, GN Focus speaks to a few inspiring leaders


Published:  December 02, 2019 07:00By Esha Nag | Editor, Property Weeklyl

gnFocus

SU_191202_WOMEN-EXPO-NEW
Expo 2020 Dubai beautifully plays out the UAE’s vision to empower womenImage Credit: GN Focus

HIGHLIGHTS

With half of Expo’s workforce being women, GN Focus speaks to a few inspiring leaders to understand how they will create an opportunity of a lifetime for participants and visitors
 

There’s a saying that goes, “If you want anything done, ask a busy man. If you want work well done, ask a busy woman.”

No one exemplifies the statement better than Reem Al Hashemi, Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director-General of Expo 2020 Dubai. She has been a proof that when it comes to getting the first World Expo in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia region (MEASA) up and running, it takes a woman to get the job done.

Su_191202_UAENATDAY_Women-ReemAlHashimi-NEW
His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, being briefed about the progress of the project by Reem Al Hashemi, Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director-General of Dubai Expo 2020 in this 2018 file photoImage Credit: GN Archives

Al Hashemi has been the face of Expo 2020 Dubai from the moment the UAE won the race to host it. Ever since then she has been in the driver’s seat, earning the trust and respect of the world, inspiring millions to appreciate and support women empowerment.

Expo 2020 Dubai beautifully plays out the UAE’s vision to empower women. It promotes gender equality at all levels — from those involved in the design, development and delivery of the event, to the programmes it runs as part of the journey to 2020. Today half of Expo’s workforce are women. Not just that, 65 per cent of all UAE National hires at Expo 2020 Dubai are women, including persons of determination.

The UAE has always believed that empowering women has a multiplier effect, helping drive economic growth and development, and benefitting societies and humanity at large. So, when the responsibility of the delivery of Expo 2020 Dubai was taken up by a woman, it was no surprise. Today Al Hashemi is a hugely inspiring role model for many young Emirati women who aspire to give back to this nation.

Women as equal partners

One realises that UAE’s ecosystem works on the belief that women are equal partners in the development of the nation. His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, has always been vocal about this, paying a rich tribute to Emirati women in many of his speeches, referring to them as “generation makers, mothers of martyrs, and the pride of the nation”.

Today almost 70 per cent of the Emirates’ university graduates are women, more than 65 per cent of UAE government employees are women, and more than 30 per cent of leadership positions are held by women.

In his book Flashes of Thought, Shaikh Mohammad has written that the UAE has “moved beyond the phase of empowering women”.

“We are empowering our economy by strengthening the role of women… we are launching development projects under the direction of women…we are improving our infrastructure, our health and education services, and even our military by relying heavily on women’s roles in these fields.”

Expo 2020 Dubai has provided an attractive working environment for innovative Emirati women, empowering them and enabling them to benefit from their creativity.

The world event has exceptionally talented women at the helm, such as Marjan Faraidooni, Chief Pavilions and Exhibitions Officer; Iman Alomrani, Deputy Chief Technology Officer; Maha Al Gargawi, Vice-President, International Participants, and Alya Al-Ali, Vice-President of the Expo Schools Programme. The Expo also provides opportunities for young women from different backgrounds. Women such as Fatma Ibrahim is the Assistant Manager of Expo Live, while Aisha Al Marzouki, a graduate of Zayed University, works for the Sustainability Department at Expo 2020.

Dispelling misconceptions

Faraidooni says one of the strongest legacy aspects of the Expo, is the fact that women have played a leading role in a mega-event happening for the very first time in the MEASA region. “Our Director General (Her Excellency Reem Al Hashemi) is a female, it is something I take pride in,” she says. “It is also something that dispels a lot of misconceptions about the role of women in the region, again one of the key legacies of this mega-event. The role of women is also a testament of our leadership’s belief in our capabilities and continued support to excel in different parts of the economy.”

The role of women is also a testament of our leadership’s belief in our capabilities and continued support to excel in different parts of the economy.

– Marjan Faraidooni, Chief Pavilions and Exhibitions Officer, Expo 2020

As a woman in leadership position, Faraidooni makes sure that all deliverables are clear to her team. “This is especially important at this critical time with less than a year to go until Expo 2020 opens. I also make sure we address challenges together and don’t wait until it’s too late. I hold regular meetings to communicate key organisational updates, ensure we are all aware of what we’re doing, and identify how we can help each other deliver our work.”

Faraidooni oversees, along with her team, 15,000 sq m of exhibition space where the Expo 2020 theme and sub-themes will be brought to life. These include the Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability pavilions. She also oversees the Expo School Programme that involves the school community. The programme consists of various initiatives, such as the Expo Young Innovators Programme, where school children are encouraged to submit ideas that could improve the lives of the people in their community and the Expo Young Stars Programme, which provides an opportunity for the students of the UAE to perform in Al Wasl Plaza. Each participating school will create its own unique show based on the themes and spirit of Expo 2020. In addition to this Faraidooni looks at District 2020, the post-Expo legacy programme — ensuring the city lives on after Expo. “District 2020 has already started connecting with local and international companies who will establish bases on the site,” she says.

With so much on her plate, work-life balance is mandatory and she makes sure to encourage her coworkers to take time off responsibly. So, what’s her cool off mantra? “I sometimes surprise the team with lunches where we can celebrate milestones, or use it as an opportunity to share our concerns and issues,” she says. “No matter how much pressure we’re under, I also make sure we find the time to laugh and enjoy ourselves in the process. The primary focus right now is to make sure we meet all our milestones and are operationally ready.”

An amazing community

Maha Al Gargawi, who looks into International Participants at Expo 2020 Dubai admits that there are too many women to look up to in the UAE. “There are so many women in executive and leadership positions, working on a project that is going to shape the future not only of Dubai and the UAE, but also the region,” she says. “A female role model does not have to be an executive or a celebrity, or someone well-known. We are all surrounded by an amazing community of women who we learn from and look up to; women who want to make a difference. We also tend to forget that women are not merely their positions. Women are mothers, sisters, caregivers, employees, executives, leaders and much more beyond that. They carry various roles across different aspects of life, and that, I think, is what truly inspires me.”

A female role model does not have to be an executive or a celebrity, or someone well-known. We are all surrounded by an amazing community of women who we learn from and look up to; women who want to make a difference.

– Maha Al Gargawi, Vice-President, International Participants, Expo 2020

According to Al Gargawi, each of the 192 countries that have confirmed their participation at Expo 2020 will highlight its priorities under the theme of Connecting Minds, Creating the Future and within its three sub-themes of Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability. “For the first time in a world expo countries have not been grouped geographically,” she says. “In previous expos you might have seen an African cluster or a Latin American cluster, but not in Expo 2020 Dubai. The theme of this Expo is Connecting Minds and countries have been allocated spaces based on their interests and on the three broad themes of opportunity, mobility and sustainability.”

We are a platform for cross pollination and international cooperation, says Al Gargawi. “So we believe that countries should be driven by their interest rather than their geography or economy,” she explains. “In Expo 2020 Dubai you will find an African country next to a Latin American one or an Asian country next to a Scandinavian one. What brings them together is their common interest. For example, a country in Africa might be facing challenges in electricity, while another country in a developed world might be well advanced in alternative sources of energy. So their common interest could be sustainability.”

Al Gargawi says it’s interesting to see how countries have interpreted the sub-themes. “For one country opportunity could mean tapping into new markets, while for another it could mean empowering women and girls,” she says. “Expo 2020 Dubai upholds the concept of One Nation One Pavilion, where each of the countries participating have chosen their sub-themes, and they have told us where they want to sit.”

She says countries have expressed interest in using the Expo 2020 platform to tackle global matters that range from climate change, to urban development, water and energy solutions, and women’s empowerment. “This truly is an Expo for the world, not just an Expo for Dubai or the UAE.”

Technology for empowerment

The woman in charge of enabling Expo 2020 Dubai to operate and run seamlessly is the Deputy Chief Technology Officer Iman Alomrani. She says, “To empower visitors to make the best of their time at Expo 2020 Dubai, we have used technology in all its forms to create a memorable and impactful visitor experience. This not only covers what we call the brilliant basics of visitor needs such as navigating the site, it also includes a ‘wow’ factor giving our visitors a feel of the future at their fingertips. Technology is our biggest ally to empower every visitor to connect, learn more, break down barriers, and to bring the world together both physically and digitally.”

To empower visitors to make the best of their time at Expo 2020 Dubai, we have used technology in all its forms to create a memorable and impactful visitor experience.

– Iman Alomrani, Deputy Chief Technology Officer, Expo 2020 Dubai

As a decision maker in her field, what is her message to the future generations? “Be the artist and create your masterpiece. Learn the technology, understand it, and then use it smartly to better our world. Innovate by filling the voids.”

Alomrani says she is now waiting for the launch of the Expo 2020 Dubai mobile app. “Through the app, there will be a portal to another world, and we can’t wait for everyone to experience it. Technology has allowed us today to design and create immersive experiences through different forms of mixed realities. Such experiences introduce new ways of connecting with one another and of how we perceive the world around us.”

Giving back to the nation

For the young Fatma Ibrahim, Assistant Manager of Expo Live, it has been a dream to give back to the nation. Being surrounded by so many inspirational women leaders is an added blessing for her, she says. “It keeps you going, reminding you of how important your role is and how valuable your contribution is.”

Asked what motivates her to work harder every day, Ibrahim says, “It’s the smile I see on the faces of our leaders when they visit the site and witness the progress. This country has given us a lot, and contributing to its beautiful journey is a humble opportunity. I can’t think of anything more meaningful.”

We believe that this platform will unlock solutions to our world’s most pressing challenges and help create a better future. Today, and to us, this is more than a promise, it has become our mission.

– Fatma Ibrahim, Assistant Manager, Expo Live

Ibrahim graduated with a Bachelor in Law in 2016 and a couple of months later joined the Expo team. As her first job, the Expo 2020 is undoubtedly presents a unique opportunity. “Expo Live is a promise we made during the bid phase for Expo 2020 Dubai,” she explains. “We believe that this platform will unlock solutions to our world’s most pressing challenges and help create a better future. Today, and to us, this is more than a promise, it has become our mission. I have been raised in the UAE and it has given me access to the best education systems, healthcare and much more. Being raised in a country that believes in the power of giving back, it was only natural for me to be interested in the field.”

For her this job is nothing short of a dream come true. “I still remember the day I was reading about what Expo Live aimed to achieve, and now I can see how far we’ve come. Visiting the field, talking to the beneficiaries and seeing the impact of our work on the ground is extremely fulfilling. Yes, challenges do exist, especially in a time-limited project, but the rewards are far more powerful.”

In a recent interview to Becky Anderson of CNN, Al Hashemi briefly looked back at the evening of November 27, 2013 when the UAE won the Expo bid. While doing so, she spoke of having her three-month-old baby with her when the news came in. As a young mother, as a leader, as someone who is entrusted with the care of the 32,000 workers on site, and the responsibility of ensuring 25 million visits, her next challenge is to ensure that when visitors come in on October 20, they walk away with an “opportunity of a lifetime”. But Al Hashemi is in no hurry. She knows it will all happen. In good time.