Archive for October, 2009

What the hell has happened to us?

Sunday, October 11th, 2009

Read the following truly shocking piece all the way through, and then try to answer this question:

What the hell has happened to us?

As Obama Advisor Courts Radical Islamists by Agreeing with Them, Obama Administration Cuts Off Funds to Human Rights Monitoring Group

By Barry Rubin

“It has been reliably reported that Mohammad-Reza Ali-Zamani, a 37-year-old Iranian, was sentenced to death on Monday.” There are three things that make this sentence of great significance.

Read the rest here

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Reality Inversion Alerts are back!

Sunday, October 11th, 2009

We haven’t issued a Reality Inversion Alert in some time, so I’ll repeat the definition:

Reality inversion alerts will be issued by whenever Israel’s enemies or their lackeys are caught using their favorite propaganda technique, which is to turn the truth upside down by falsely accusing Israel of doing exactly what they themselves do or try to do.

So, for example, when lackey of apartheid Saudi Arabia Jimmy Carter accuses Israel of being an “apartheid state”, or when the genocidal Hamas movement accuses Israel of committing genocide against Palestinians, reality inversion is taking place.

Today we have two Reality Inversions to report.

First, Saudi Arabia and Syria, two serial reality inverters if there ever were such, issued a joint communiqué last week after the visit of Saudi King Abdullah to Syria. In part,

The communiqué urged joint Arab and Islamic action to stop the continuous Israeli aggression on the Palestinians. The two sides stressed the need to lift the Israeli siege on Al-Aqsa Mosque and confront the measures taken by Israel to Judaize Jerusalem, it added.

So now it’s an ‘Israeli siege’ on the Temple Mount?

The reality is the opposite: the recent attempt to spark violence there are a result of a struggle between Hamas and Fatah for influence in an area which they believe will soon be wrested from Israeli hands by the US. By spreading rumors of an intended ‘takeover’ of the Al-Aqsa Mosque by radical Jewish ‘settlers’, and calling for Arabs to ‘defend’ it, Sheik Raed Salah of the the Islamic Movement is trying to get recruits and money for his organization, which serves as a surrogate for Hamas in Jerusalem.

Nothing helps the Palestinian cause more than violent confrontations, so that Israel’s responses to keep order and protect her citizens can be played as ‘aggression’. Salah and Hamas would love to see a ‘third intifada’, and lacking a Sharon visit to the Temple Mount as a pretext, they are doing their best to create one.

And second, Israel is finally calling out J Street, whose declaration that they are “pro-Israel” is itself a Reality Inversion:

WASHINGTON – The Israeli Embassy informed J Street of its concern that the new lobbying group advocates policies that could “impair Israel’s interests,” an embassy spokesman has told The Jerusalem Post…

J Street has taken several positions at odds with the Israeli government in recent months, including arguing against the immediate imposition of additional sanctions on Iran even as Israel pushes for greater action, and backing US President Barack Obama’s call for a complete settlement freeze in the face of Israeli opposition.

And that isn’t the half of it. J Street, the left-wing Jewish lobbying group which claims that it more accurately represents the position of American Jews than AIPAC (and ‘proves’ it with misleading polls),

…called for an immediate cease-fire on the first day of the Gaza war, believes that negotiations with Iran should be carried out without threat of sanctions, opposed — lobbied against — a congressional initiative asking the President to encourage Arab nations to normalize relations with Israel, called for a complete freeze on construction inside settlements, approved of President Obama’s granting the Medal of Freedom to  Mary Robinson (who as UN Commissioner for Human Rights presided over the 2001 Durban conference), favored an American performance of the antisemitic play Seven Jewish Children, calls for negotiations with Hamas, and is funded not only by the dollars of liberal Jews, but those of known supporters of Arab and Iranian causes…  — FresnoZionism, “The fresh, young, ignorant faces of J Street

Freedom of speech demands that there be room for yet another anti-Israel lobby, to join the multitude of Saudi- and Iranian-funded ones, and I suppose even one composed of Jews, albeit ignorant ones. But respect for language, logic and decency demands that they don’t invert reality and lie about their goals.

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Ha’aretz writers are subversive

Friday, October 9th, 2009

The Ha’aretz newspaper is… something else.

Called the “NY Times of Israel”, Ha’aretz writers are often far more anti-Israel than those of the NY Times, which is no slouch in that department.

The previous editor, David Landau, famously told former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice that Israel was a ‘failed state’ which needed to be ‘raped’ into a settlement with the Arabs by the US (I originally thought that Landau must have been thinking of the Hebrew word “לאנוס” which means both ‘to force’ and ‘to rape’, but then I discovered that he had come to Israel from the UK at the age of 23). He also said that this would be a “wet dream” for him.

One writer, Gideon Levy, accused Israel of committing ‘war crimes’ on the first day of the Gaza war. And Amira Hass, here validating the libels of the Goldstone report, is as eloquent a spokesperson for the Palestinian cause as you will find anywhere.

Today it’s Akiva Eldar doing the devil’s work:

The U.S. administration is furious over Israeli incitement against President Barack Obama, Democratic congressmen close to Obama told an Israeli source who returned from a visit to Washington this week.

The congressmen even hinted that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been personally involved.

The source, who met in Washington with administration officials and members of Congress, told Haaretz he was stunned by the level of anger there over attempts to portray Obama to the American public as an enemy of Israel because of his efforts to restart peace talks and freeze settlement construction.

This appears in the ‘diplomatic news’ section of (English).

So an unnamed source is ‘stunned’ by unnamed congressmen who are ‘furious’.  One of the most basic principles that an intelligent person applies when making  judgments about accusations like this is to ‘consider the source’, but Eldar — in a news article — doesn’t tell us. This is more ‘National Enquirer’ material than responsible journalism.

I haven’t heard Netanyahu say anything like “Obama is an enemy of Israel”, have you? And if Obama is “furious” at Netanyahu, I haven’t heard him say that either. So why present an unsourced slander against the PM in a news article?

There can be only one reason, which is to strike a political blow against him in Israel and to discredit him in the US.

This is not a bit surprising, when you consider Eldar’s degree of left-wing extremism. Recently, he argued that the concessions Olmert offered in negotiations with the Palestinians were insufficient to compensate them for years of ‘struggle’! Struggle indeed.

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We don’t have to take this

Thursday, October 8th, 2009
2005 antisemitic cartoon in Palestinian newspaper Al-Hayat Al-Jadida

2005 antisemitic cartoon in Palestinian newspaper Al-Hayat Al-Jadida. Courtesy Palestinian Media Watch,

Jonathan Rosenblum wrote,

Shimon Peres once remarked, “I don’t care what the Palestinians say, only what’s written in the agreements.” But what the Palestinians say to one another, and particularly what they teach their children, is far more important than what’s written in peace agreements.

Incitement and demonization are not just one more treaty violation. They reflect the failure of the Palestinians since the beginning of Oslo to create a constituency for peace with Israel, to educate the Palestinian population to the idea of living side-by-side with a Jewish state or to make clear that peace will also require concessions on the Palestinians’ part.

That has never happened. Even worse, there has been no education to accept the existence of Israel in any borders or to renounce once and for all the dream of throwing all the Jews into the sea.

The Palestinian Authority [PA] has gone out of its way to make heroes of the most vicious terrorists – not exactly the way to encourage thoughts of reconciliation and peace. Mahmoud Abbas sent his warmest congratulations to child-murderer Samir Kuntar, upon his release from an Israeli jail, and commissioned festive celebrations in honor of Dalal Mughrabi, the mastermind of the 1978 Coastal Road Massacre in which 38 Israelis were murdered.

Day in and day out, Palestinians are exposed to clearly antisemitic rantings and wild accusations on their radio, TV and newspapers, in their mosques and their schools. Here are a few of them that Rosenblum mentions:

…Israel will pay NIS 4,500 to any Palestinian who can prove he is a drug addict; Israel produced and distributed to Palestinians 200 tons of drug-laced bubble gum designed to destroy the genetic systems of Palestinian youth; it also distributes carcinogenic food and fruits for Palestinian consumption and children’s games that beam radioactive x-rays. And don’t forget the HIV-infected Jewish prostitutes whom Israel unleashed on Palestinian youth. Or Suha Arafat’s accusation to Hillary Clinton that Israel poisons Palestinian wells.

The very outlandishness of these slanders — like the IDF organ-stealing story, which also originated in the Palestinian press — shows that the Palestinian audience has been conditioned to regard them as believable, by years of being fed similar poison.

The effect of decades of incitement to destroy Israel is fully reflected in Palestinian polls. A June 5-7 poll by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research found that three-quarters of Palestinians reject any possibility of reconciliation with Israel in this generation, even if a final peace agreement were signed and an independent Palestinian state created.

The PA is not alone in this, although the effect of its propaganda on the prospects of the ‘peace process’ has been huge. Egypt is probably the world leader in production of antisemitic propaganda of all kinds, from films and TV programs — for example this 30-part series based on “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion” — to publication of “Mein Kampf” and the Protocols translated into Arabic.

You know what? We don’t have to take this.

It’s difficult for Israel to pressure Sweden, for example, to control its hate-mongers, although perhaps more could have been done diplomatically in response to the Aftonbladet scandal.

But the PA is wholly dependent on Israel and the US. And Egypt receives $3 billion a year from the US. Even without the help of the US, Israel can make life very difficult for the PA.

It is remarkable that Israel does not take decisive action to force the PA to finally put an end to the incitement — which after all comes from their state-controlled institutions. Perhaps Israelis, too, are so accustomed to hearing themselves compared to pigs and apes that it doesn’t register any more.

The Obama administration appears to be devoting a large amount of effort and political capital to an attempt to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, such as its unfortunate demand for a settlement freeze. Ending Palestinian and other Arab incitement would be one of the most constructive steps it could take.

Or — don’t bother. Take them at their hateful word. Make no further concessions and do what’s necessary to ensure Israel’s safety. If they insist on being Nazis, treat them as such.

Either way, self-respect demands that we don’t continue to accept this, not for one more day.

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Treat Goldstone Report with contempt

Wednesday, October 7th, 2009
Furious Palestinians (when aren't they?)

Furious Palestinians (when aren't they?)

The Goldstone report continues to make trouble.

  • Palestinians, especially those aligned with Hamas, are furious at Mahmoud Abbas for not pressing that it be presented to the International Criminal Court. Abbas, embarrassed, has gone so far as to order an investigation of the actions of the government that he himself controls!
  • The Obama Administration is asking Israel to do an “independent investigation” of the report. There may or may not be an element of threat that the report will be allowed to go forward, ultimately to the International Criminal Court, if Israel does not follow instructions.

The main problem with the report is not simply that it describes events that did not occur or exaggerates what actually happened. The greatest evil done to Israel and the Jewish people by the ‘Zionist’ Judge Richard Goldstone is something else:  In Ami Isseroff’s words,

Beyond all its irregularities, the Goldstone report made one claim that cannot be refuted: That Israeli policy and war tactics were deliberately designed to kill civilians. It can’t be refuted because it is not logical or based on any facts. Like medieval accusations of well poisoning or the blood libel, it is obvious that the persons making the accusation already have all the information needed to refute it, and simply ignore it because of malevolent mendaciousness…

Goldstone’s report claimed:

1211. Statements by political and military leaders prior to and during the military operations in Gaza leave little doubt that disproportionate destruction and violence against civilians were part of a deliberate policy.593

In a real report, one might expect that reference 593 would include the statements by political and military leaders that left no doubt etc. Instead, the footnote (like much of the Goldstone report) simply references a report by an anti-Israel NGO.

Indeed, NGO Monitor called it a “cut-and-paste job“. But here’s the kicker: not only is there no evidence for this really horrendous libel, but it is possible to present a very strong argument that such could not have been the policy.

As I’ve argued in “How Israel must fight“, perceptions of unnecessary damage or civilian suffering lead to international intervention which has often prevented Israel from achieving military objectives.   Therefore, Israel had every reason to reduce collateral damage, not to increase it. The alleged policy of ‘punishing’ civilians would be counterproductive and irrational.

That this was the policy is shown by the fact that Israel made thousands of phone calls and text messages, dropped warning leaflets, etc. to try to get non-combatants out of harm’s way. This shows that a high priority was assigned to reducing collateral damage, because these measures decreased the strictly military effectiveness of the operation.

As a matter of fact, it’s likely that the US did intervene anyway and stop the operation early, in part because of the worldwide propaganda attack on Israel for atrocities that it didn’t commit.

The Goldstone report, the UN and Goldstone himself should be treated with the contempt that they deserve. Israel should not appoint a special commission and undertake a national soul-searching to determine why its leaders are war criminals, because they are not. Why further legitimize the slanders? The IDF is carrying on investigations of incidents where soldiers may have acted inappropriately, which is the correct and normal response after such an operation.

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