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Elie Wiesel
Elie Wiesel attends the premiere of 'The Reader' at the Ziegfeld Theater on Wednesday, Dec. 3, 2008 in New York. (AP)

Elie Wiesel attends the premiere of 'The Reader' at the Ziegfeld Theater on Wednesday, Dec. 3, 2008 in New York. (AP)

Nobel Prize-winner Elie Wiesel was thrown in Auschwitz when he was fifteen. His father, mother, and younger sister died there, in the nightmare of the Holocaust.

He emerged, to make a life of powerful witness and remembrance. His memoir “Night” introduced millions to the horrors of the Nazi death camps.

Now, at 80, his moral investigation of that horror, and its aftermath, goes on. Elie Wiesel is still fighting for morality. Still fighting for remembrance.

This hour, On Point: Elie Wiesel and his new novel “A Mad Desire to Dance.”

You can join us. Has Elie Wiesel been your guide through the moral implications, the nightmare, of the Holocaust? What’s your question for him today?

Guest:

Elie Wiesel joins us from St. Petersberg, Florida. Author, activist, Holocaust survivor, and winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, Wiesel is professor of humanities at Boston University and is one of our era’s greatest thinkers on modern morality, and its failings. His new novel is “A Mad Desire to Dance.” You can read an excerpt at RandomHouse.com.

Wiesel has spoken out recently on the Bernard Madoff scandal, which cost him — and many others — dearly. See a transcript of his comments about Madoff on today’s show.

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  • R.M.

    Mr. wiesel can you explain the extraordinary lies about the Israeli conflict ,coming from the Arab and Palestinian world with the conflict of the world media ? the voices against the libels of Al Dura and Pallywood are very weak. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t_B1H-1opys#IIfAj_eg2EE

  • Edward Agro

    What is Wiesel’s opinion of the recent Israeli actions in Gaza? Can they be defended in any way?

  • Lilya Lopekha

    Timothy Geithner has to Go.

    He is a smooth salesman who got a Selling Job becasue of connections. Obama cannot tolerate him appearing alone in front of the Press.

    Timothy Geithner is Henry Paulson, Jr.

  • mike

    wished he expressed this towards, the israel against muslim children

  • http://www.jodysandhaus.com Jody Sandhaus

    My father was a physician during WW2-he was at DDay, Battle of the Bulge and the liberation of Buchenwald.
    He said that upon liberation-there was no excitment by the inmates-very very quiet, since everyone was starving and weak. Unfortunately my father passed away just before I read “Night”. I wanted to tell him about Mr. Wiesel’s account of his experiences. I have his accounts on film and since whe was an avid photographer, I have photos of the “Camp”. He was also in charge of identifying the cause of death of many bodies that were buried or stacked. I appreiate Mr. Wiesel’s speaking out and sharing. It needs to be done-
    Thank you.

  • Michael

    There are no good or evil people, only good or evil actions. I would like to hear Mr. Wiesel’s personal definition of evil..

  • Wow

    I was very disappointed to hear Mr Wiesel’s position on the recent Israeli attack on Gaza. He simply repeated the standard talking points justifying Israel’s behavior. And this just minutes after saying that every time a child dies anywhere is a tragedy. What about the 3-400 Palestinian children recently blown to bits, crushed in their homes, burned alive, or shot to death by Israeli forces?

    I expected more compassion and nuance from a man as eloquent as Mr Wiesel and who has endured the suffering that he has.

  • mike

    whoever was that caller just now thank you for calling ellis out on this. and his blantly double standards of what he trys to stand for and what he actually does

  • Parsley Keenan

    I greatly respect the Jewish people’s suffering before and during WWII. But compared to the others races in the world who also suffered genocide and the rest, the Jewish population seems to be the least able to let go of the past(I am not saying that we should not acknowledge and bring justice to the terrible atrocities) and move forward. For some reason, I always sense this kind of ” our suffering is more worthy than yours” mentality from many Jewish people that I came across.

  • Sonja

    Mr. Wiesel,
    What are your thoughts on child soiders (e.g. the Hitler Youth)? Are they perpetrators or victims? Should they feel guilt?

  • Margaret

    I ask Tom Ashbrook to have Eli Wiesel on again sepcifically to discuss his idea of convening a group of Nobel Laureates to go to Gaza and witness the effects of the latest Israeli incursion.
    I have trouble with how he, as a moral authority in the Jewish community, indeed the world, who experienced forced expulsion from his home and horrible atrocities can turn a blind eye to the explusion of so many Palestinians and their ongoing subjugations by the Israeli government right now?
    How can he say he doesn’t believe in collective punishment when the whole population of Gaza and the West Bank is being collectively punished by the state of Israel ? We need him to speak out publically to the world, not just behind closed doors to the Israeli leadership. This could be the most daring, most truthful act of courage of his entire lifetime.

  • Anonymous

    He never really answered the question on forgiveness.

    One doesn’t forgive for the benefit of the offender. And forgiveness should not be contingent upon the offender asking for it either. Others who haven’t won a Nobel have forgiven far worse without the contrition of their abusers.

  • http://www.none.com John

    I’ve long heard of Mr. Wiesel, but have never read any of his books or heard him speak. He surprised me three times:

    1 — He corrected a caller for calling him Mr. “W”eisel, rather than “V”eisel. Yet, in spite of living in the US for many decades, he frequently mispronounces English words starting with “W”

    2 — Mr. Wiesel expressed that he couldn’t ever forgive Mr. Madoff, and wanted the harshest punishment possible for him. I guess $$ means a lot to Mr. Wiesel.

    3 — Apparently no one has explained to Mr. Wiesel that Mr. Madoff personally has relatively little of the $50 billion that has been lost. Most of the $$ was paid as interest to investors like Mr. Wiesel himself.

  • 4Allhumanrights

    Thank you for asking the question on Israel and Palestine. How can Elie Wiesel be so blatantly dismissive of Israel’s action towards the Palestinians, and still claim he’s fighting for morality, especially after Israel pummeled Gaza to the death of thousands of human beings?? His narrative about the holocaust presumes higher moral grounds and greater suffering than all others, which Jews have made an industry of. He cannot pick and chose his morality and claim political disengagement with the answers he gave; I am very disappointed in him, but not really surprised. I wish the Jewish pundits can start to do better than they have been doing thus far! I’ll quote Avraham Burg from his book The Holocaust is Over, because he words it best “We must admit that present-day Israel and its ways contribute to the rise in hatred of Jews…and…the shallow notion that “the world is against us no matter what we do” such beliefs are suicidal, desperate, and defeatist. I do not subscribe to them.”

  • Alex

    I see nothing wrong with resorting to double standards. Another name for a double standard is taking your side and fighting for it. I am on the side of Israel, and not on the side of Hamas. Simple.

  • Ali of Boston

    I went on the air “OnPoint” today (Wed., Mar. 11, 2009) and have some important points to make in that regard:

    1. I had heard the commercial about OnPoint’s program on “Elie Wiesel” tens of times on WBUR since last night but did not know what it is about until this morning that OnPoint went on the air. Numerous WBUR commercials before OnPoint started today was only about who Elie Wiesel is but NOTHING about what he was going to talk about!?
    When OnPoint started this morning, I learned for the FIRST TIME that it was about Mr. Wiesel’s NEW BOOK and his complaints of NOT forgiving “Bernard Madoff” who had skimmed millions of his money. As result, I had legitimate reasons for becoming disappointed in OnPoint directors because they had practically used public resources of WBUR (including my direct donations) for the advancing personal interests of Mr. Wiesel.

    2. I called in and went on the air today (Ali, from Boston) near the end of the program. I asked my question but Mr. Wiesel started talking about some irrelevant issues, by ignoring or missing my main point/question. I tried to focus the discussion by making a quick comment but felt that my microphone had been muted by OnPoint because I was hearing that Mr. Wiesel was continuing his talk about those irrelevant issues. Finally, I was disconnected by OnPoint staff without any advance notice and/or having any opportunity to recap/comment/follow-up.

    3. My comments and questions on the air today was not stemming from rage but facts. This is because I have been familiar with Mr. Wiesel’s ideas for over a decade. It goes back to about 10 years ago when I heard his talk on BU’s “World of Ideas” seminar on “A Portrait of the Messiah” which is getting repeated on regular basis even to this day on at BU and on WBUR which he seams to have a permanent seat.

    Mr. Wiesel talks from high moral grounds by repeating phrases such as: “Forgiving but not forgetting, justice not revenge, …” although he has refused to forgive Madoff “ … unless he falls on his feet”. Furthermore, he has been one of the leading intellectual who has been claiming that he does not want to forget holocaust after more than half a century because he wants to prevent injustice from happening again. This has been mostly the theme in his talks, interviews, books, … However, I have not personally heard or read anything from him to practically support his claims about asking justice for today conflicts in the Middle East.

    The recent destruction and bloodshed in Gaza which resulted in 1000+ dead Palestinians, (100+ times more than the number of dead Israelis) was the latest example. Namely, while UN, Amnesty International and even some Israeli Human Rights organizations condemned Israel acts in Gaza, Mr. Wiesel has been completely silent in this regard and even in today’s program on OnPoint simply avoided answering my question in this regard.
    The action and/or inaction of individuals such as Mr. Elie Wiesel has resulted in the fact that characters such as Ahmadinejad who is constantly and brutally violating human and civil rights of its own citizens in Iran has become the leading voice against Israel’s killings and destruction in Gaza.
    Ahmadinejad regime has been able to become vocal in such cases because intellectuals such as Mr. Elie Wiesel have not done their duty, let alone their claim, of being on the side of justice which has and will play against the real and long term interests of the US, Israel, Iranian people, Palestinians, and World’s real and lasting peace.

    4. I have been a long time listener of WBUR, going back to the time that Mr. Christopher Lyden was running a great program called “The Connection”, long before that program was cut off he air and was substituted by today “OnPoint” program. (“TheConnection” seemed to be terminated by the WBUR management at the time mainly due to the politics of the time. Namely, the fact that Mr. Lyden was rightly a hard critic of George W. Bush who had just elected for his 2nd term at the heat of war in Iraq.)

    5. Despite all of these facts expressed in No. 4, I respect Mr. Tom Ashbrook and his colleague Mr. Jack Beatty very much and have enjoyed many of their programs. But I would like to request Mr. Ashbrook to safeguard the integrity, effectiveness, and openness of his respected program by making sure that such discussions do not become a one way talking/lecturing.
    For example, if due to any reason Mr. Ashbrook was not able to prevent Mr. Wiesel from avoiding my question, at least the listener who had originally asked the question should have an opportunity to comment or make a follow-up so we can all stay on the issue which is specifically put on the table. Otherwise OnPoint will become another venue like “World of Ideas” for Mr. Wiesel where he can use his permanent seat and stature for repeating and lecturing instead of listening and answering.

  • R.M.

    4allhumanrights . If you are a so called human right activist , you should genuinely investigate what is really going on in the pal/Israeli conflict . Of course Mr. Wiesel did not answer your question because you did not get the answer you wanted to hear . Mr. Wiesel is well aware of the media distortion against Israel . Can you tell me why you so called activists have never called into question the fabricated lies that the Palestinians have made with the Al Dura lying fiasco ,which went to court in France , (and there are many more ) which was the cause of many anti-Semitic incidents including the death of journalist Daniel Pearl who was decapitated on the Internet . The numbers that were given by the Palestinians so called killed in the last war in Gaza cannot be believed by people who lie and constantly inflate the number of dead in order to use and get the world attention to pity them . The Italian reputable newspaper “Corriere Della Serra” published an article disputing the numbers of death to 500 mostly were hamas fighters . You so called human right activists by perpetuating the lies of the Palestinians you are continuing the suffering of not only the innocent Palestinians but also the Israelis Jews and Arabs who are victims of terrorist conflicts . Why are you not outraged by Hamas using civilians as shields? ……They have absolutely no excuse for doing this. Mr. Wiesel said that Israel has a right to defend itself . So called human right activist If you don’t make an effort to educate yourself in this then you either don’t really care about all the innocent people caught up in this conflict or you are a fool. Listern to Mr. Landes History professor at Boston University talking about PALLYWOOD.. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eww7BkkvFdo&feature=related

  • R.M.

    4allhumanrights…(SO CALLED )shame on you for saying that Jews have made an industry of the holocaust …this shows who you really are under the guise of a human right activist ….you really are a closet Nazi who happily will find any excuse to vilify and defame Jews

  • R.M.

    WBUR …..How about a show on the almost 1 million Jews (more than palestinians who left thinking jews were going to be massacred )kicked out of Arab countries all their possessions confiscated as they were made refugees in tents in Israel ? why has the United Nation and the world not want to recognise these refugees that make up 50% of Israeli population ……lets have a show on these “FORGOTTEN REFUGEES”

    WHY IS THE MEDIA QUIET ON THIS WELL KEPT SECRET?

  • R.M.

    Ali why are you upset of Mr. Wiesel and his book on the wbur?Isn’t that what many writers do? go on shows to advertise their books? Why are you singleling Mr. Weisel …..could it be you have a bias against him ? Please don’t mention the UN workers in Gaza who are infiltrated by hamas . Any organization in Gaza is controlled by hamas or they would not be there ……..Some of the abuses by the UN have been gun running and sexual abuse http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/article4012013.ece and there is more ……….So please don’t quote them as if they were the greatest invention since sliced bread …….. corruption runs ramped at the United Nation

  • Doris Cadigan

    Dear Tom Ashbrook,

    I am writing in regard to your radio show today with guest Elie Wiesel.

    I find it absolutely unconscionable for Wiesel as a victim and writer
    of Nazi oppression to justify Israel’s savage air and ground assault
    on Gaza which left hundreds of civilians dead, including women and
    children and police cadets and thousands of others wounded, count-
    less homeless and Gaza’s infrastructure and lives in utter shambles.

    Like, so many people around the world I have been in utter despair
    looking at pictures and hearing about the devastation the Israeli army
    inflicted on this defenseless population, whose members are over 50%
    under the age of 17 years and already traumatized by years of the
    Israeli Army’s occupation on their land. Here is Dr Alice Rothchild on
    her visit to Gaza in 2005:

    “We witnessed the devastating consequences for the civilian population
    of years of Israeli military operations. The checkpoints, closures and the
    severe restriction on movement and economic activity have contributed
    to rising unemployment, poverty accompanied by unusually high rates of
    infant mortality, acute and chronic malnutrition and inadequate outpatient
    and hospital care.

    At the Gaza Community Mental Health Program, Dr. Eyad el Sarraj spoke
    of an entire population suffering from the symptoms of post traumatic
    stress disorder, anxiety and depression, a consequence of high unemploy-
    ment, extreme poverty and massive exposure to violence.

    A recent study by the program of 10 to 19-year olds in Gaza found that two thirds have seen a friend or neighbor killed or wounded, more than one third have been tear-gassed and 82 percent suffer from moderate to severe PTSD We know that the more trauma and violence occur in a child’s youth, the more risk-taking and violence happen in later life.” http://www.vopjip.org/issues93.htm )

    Indeed, I feel it was pure evil for the Israeli Army to attack such a fragile and young population and I hope the UN and the International Criminal Court will hold those Israelis involved guilty of the most atrocious war crimes and crimes against humanity.

    Today, Elie Wiesel not only discredits himself as a Holocaust survivor but also
    its victims. It’s immoral to side with oppressors and as the American internat-
    ional law professor , Dr. George Bisharat recently pointed out in his Wall Street Journal editorial, Israeli officials and their commanders cannot justify their military action based on self-defense either:

    “On June 19, 2008, Hamas and Israel commenced a six-month truce.
    Neither side complied perfectly. Israel refused to substantially ease the
    suffocating siege of Gaza imposed in June 2007. Hamas permitted spo-
    radic rocket fire — typically after Israel killed or seized Hamas members
    in the West Bank, where the truce did not apply. Either one or no Israelis
    were killed (reports differ) by rockets in the half year leading up to the
    current attack.

    Israel then broke the truce on Nov. 4, raiding the Gaza Strip and killing a Palestinian. Hamas retaliated with rocket fire; Israel then killed five more Palestinians. In the following days, Hamas continued rocket fire — yet still
    no Israelis died. Israel cannot claim self-defense against this escalation,
    because it was provoked by Israel’s own violation.”
    (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123154826952369919.html )

    In addition, I can’t see how Elie Wiesel can side-step Israel’s cruel and criminal blockade of the Gaza Strip as the root source of the rocket fire as Dr, Bisharat pointed out.

    Even a small animal such as a bird will fight for its right to fly and be free.
    Hence, it seems resistance to the will of others is ingrained in all the species
    and Israel’s occupation and oppression of the Palestinian people is a disgrace
    to the Human Race.

    It’s little wonder the Rght to Resist an invading force or foreign force is lawful under international law and all the international Human Rights groups , includ-
    ing the International Red Cross who have condemned Israel’s aggression and control of the Gaza Strip and territories as denying the Palestinian people the right to a normal and dignified life in their own land.

    Indeed, a panel of fourteen justices at the International Court of Justice in the Hague ruled unanimously in 2004, Israel must remove its forces from the territories in accordance with UN Security Resolution of 1967, and it must dis-mantle and “void” all its structures which are in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention.

    Hence, Elie Wiesel is not only on the wrong side of history today with his apology for the colonial regime in Israel and the territories but he is also on the wrong side of the law and human rights as a result.

    Doris Cadigan, Massachusetts

  • A Human Being

    “I see nothing wrong with resorting to double standards. Another name for a double standard is taking your side and fighting for it. I am on the side of Israel, and not on the side of Hamas. Simple.”

    I’m not on Hamas’s side, and I’m not on Israel’s side. I’m on humanity’s side. I’m against people in general being slaughtered horribly, either by resistance fighters/terrorists or national armies.

    For Mr Wiesel to dismiss Palestinian suffering as cavalierly as he did on his show greatly diminishes his standing as a “moral authority”.

  • A Human Being

    PS: To anyone considering replying to R.M.’s freakout, please don’t. As the saying goes, ‘don’t feed the trolls’.

  • Rodney Falk

    In response to Doris:
    The invasion of Gaza by Israeli troops was prompted by constant shelling, over a period of years, of Israeli border towns by Hamas. The fact that few Israelis were killed in these actions is in large part because, night after night, families slept in bomb shelters, forced to flee there by Hamas’s indiscriminate shelling. Hamas has been recognized as a terrorist organization by the bulk of the international community, and their control of Gaza, using it as a base to increase terror against Israeli citizens, is a situation that would not be tolerated by any other nation. (Imagine if, for example, a town in Maine was shelled daily by a rebel group in Canada. Would the US government stand idly by?). Hamas’s intransigence led to the Israeli incursion, after all other avenues had been exhausted and after shelling of Israeli cities continued unabated.

    Nobody likes war. And unintended civilian casualties are, sadly, a constant accompaniment of war. While even one civilian casualty is a tragedy and comparisons are therefore fraught with difficulty and emotion, it is nevertheless true that the percentage of civilians who died in the Hamas-Israel war was lower than in the war in Iraq and many other recent conflicts. And this is despite the fact that Gaza is a much more densely populated territory. To state that Israel is guilty of the most atrocious war crimes and crimes against humanity based on casualties of war is to fail to understand the sad, but sometimes necessary character of war, and demonstrates either a one-sided bias or a remarkable sense of naïveté. There are estimates of between 665,000 to 1 million dead civilians, either directly or as a result of hunger and sectarian violence in Iraq as a result of the US invasion. But the Bush administration censored news even to the extent of not allowing photographs of coffins of US soldiers. As a result, that war was “sanitized” in a fashion that Gaza was not.

    Unlike Hamas’s constant shelling of towns and suicide bombings in restaurants and other public places there was no attempt by Israelis in Gaza to target civilians. Indeed, in Gaza an unheard of phenomenon occurred—Israelis warned occupants of buildings in advance that they would be attacked. And the response—–Hamas placed civilians on their roofs.

    Nobody in their right mind likes war, and certainly nobody in their right mind could or should tolerate terrorism. But after years of suicide bombings in Israeli streets and shelling of Israeli towns, which most certainly produces a huge amount of post-traumatic stress, the situation reached a level that could no longer be tolerated. It is perhaps telling that, although Israelis have, and freely express, a huge range of political opinions across the complete spectrum (note that Israel is the only country in the Middle East where there is complete freedom of press and all such opinions are heard), the overwhelming majority of Israelis wholeheartedly supported the action in Gaza. Had they suddenly all been brainwashed, or was their response a sigh of relief that finally the day to day angst and fear with which they all had been living might be assuaged? The answer is clear, and the Gaza war was justified and just, despite the very sad loss of civilian life.

  • R.M.

    to so called human being ..Do you really think for yourself ..do you really know what hamas stands for ? let me know the ways ……

  • R.M.

    So called human being are you saying that Al Dura killing posted all over the world ,really happened ?and what is this word troll ? are you in real estate ?

  • Parsley Keenan

    R.M.
    I don’t think it’s over the top to say that your comments shows how much you are one of those many millions of Jews who just simply wouldn’t not and couldn’t let go and forgive. By the way, even many well-known Jewish figures themselves have acknowledged the fact that the Holocaust has indeed become an industry and excuse for many who either experienced through it or NOT to truly forgive and let go. Being able to recognize this doesn’t make your a NAZI( and you should know, there are many around the world who are not of German ancestry still doing the same thing to torture and destroy as we speak). I wish there were more with the courage to point that out!!!

  • Parsley Keenan

    Oh, by the way, it looks like R.M has to attack each and every one who doesn’t agree with him or who supported those whose comments offended him…..
    If that’s not a clinical case of lack of self-assurance /self-esteem, I don’t know what is.

  • Yuri

    Mr. Wiesel speaks eloquently of his mission to sensitize himself to “the other” so as to understand and show compassion for the other’s suffering. Unfortunately, his desire to understand “the other” does not extend to millions of innocent Palestinian civilians who have suffered for years under a brutal Occupation.

    He also says he believes that whenever a child dies anywhere in the world, we should not look into his pocket for an I.D.–that “a child is a child.” Again, I fear that his compassion does not extend to Palestinian children, else how could he not speak out against the deaths of so many children in the recent Israeli incursions into Gaza? I wish that he would address his own question–”Why kill children?–to the state of Israel.

    Finally, he speaks of the need to teach Israeli children “how to find shelter in 20 seconds” to escape Hamas rockets. What, I would like to know, would he teach Palestinian children who don’t even have shelter to run to–to escape Israeli bombs?

  • nanohistory

    I think Elie Wiesel’s suffering has blinded him to his own contradictions. There’s no doubt he has made a career of being a Holocaust victim, thereby undermining that terrible period in history. Avraham Burg has already been mentioned, he is an Israeli who understands perfectly the negative side of using the Holocaust as an excuse and permanent battering ram.
    The fact that Wiesel can’t identify with the suffering of Palestinians demonstrates his warped agenda.
    As for his investments with Madoff, I don’t buy his claim to otherworldly indifference, he must have known that Madoff “made” an unusually high return for his clients. (It’s outrageous that poor people are being blamed for falling for seductive mortgages, when well-educated, sophisticated people are being seen as victims of Madoff’s scam.)
    A Jewish friend calls Elie Wiesel’s approach “the Oy Vey school of history,” to me he’s a professional victim, and utterly disingenuous.

  • R.M.

    Parsley ..”How would you know if I am Jewish or not ….you assume I am …..Do you know me ? I am pretty well aware of your pathetic”hero” Norman Finkelstein . Why do you quote others …. why don’t you say it yourself : “the holocaust has become an industry” . I think maybe you should tell the Arab who commit murder by suicide bombing to “forgive” Now that would be real Christian wouldn’t it ?…Have you ever seen a Jew kill Germans after and because of the holocaust ? No!!! …..And they had a real reason to do it ..No they just went and remade their broken lives wherever they could ..Now that’s forgiving ……….Why do you assume I am attacking , I am just answering your misinformation .like it or not that’s all it is …..maybe you take it as an attack ….that’s your problem…..

  • R.M.

    nanohistory , I am so glad you have jewish friends .. …..do you have black friends also ?

  • Steven Pruzis

    Some day American Jews may take a cold public look at the leaping and creeping theft of land by which Israelis have secured themselves a country. And under the moral cloak of the Holocaust too; which makes it doubly bad. But not yet…. Mr Weisel, a broad thinker, unaccountably passes up the big question to tit-for-tat over Gaza, whose residents (no, they’re not all gunmen) really got the short end of the stick.

    Another hero with feet of clay. I’m depressed and disappointed. I guess I won’t be reading his books any time soon.

    Thank you Mr Ashbrook, for your show. As always, it’s a learning experience.

  • Peter Pjecha Jr.

    I believe that Elie Wiesel is a great man that has done and suffered great things; however, he is greatly missing the mark and mistaken in thinking that humanity is at its basic essence and very core, good. For I believe that a holocaust denier is no worse than a man who denies God’s righteous and true assessment of our fallen humanity and manifest nature … and therefore seeks not the answer that would and could solve that glaring and brilliantly defined problem. “A man can be sick and brilliant … Sick in the heart yet brilliant in the mind; few are truly sick in the head—and Salvador Dali was quite right and being brutally honest when he spoke the truth and said … ‘The only difference between a madman and me is that I am not mad.’” The madness of humanity is that of the heart, and not the very rare madness of the mind … For the God of the Jewish scriptures said: “The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked … who can know it.” … and if one knows not his enemy … how can he defeat him?

  • Ali of Boston

    Dear Mr. Tom Ashbrook;

    I left a comment on this page before. If you are too busy to read my comment entirely, I suggest that you at least read parts No. 2 and 5.

    Please feel free to contact me directly at the given email.

    Thanks.

    >> Ali

  • Lilya Lopekha

    WBUR gets donations from Institutions who have certain agendas. They make donations to Public Media organizations with strings attached.

    Not only they place producers and staff that are symphatetic to their cause, they also demand certain ideology with the selection of guests and the topics of shows that are produced by the station.

    If you want to see some of these characters, come to the next Executive Board meeting (sometime in April).

  • Lilya Lopekha

    Rockets, Rockets, Rockets that fired from Gaza to Ashkelon – mentioned by Elie.

    Let’s see the connection between the people in Gaza and the town of Ashkelon. Please read the area where it is explaning what happened around 1948-1950: http://www.HumanGenome.org/ashkelon.htm

    And then ask yourself – what is Ethnic Cleansing?

  • http://www.onpointradio.org/about-on-point/wen-stephenson/ Wen Stephenson

    I know these topics are highly charged, but please keep your comments civil. This is not a place to engage in personal attacks.

    To Lilya and others: There are no “strings” attached to WBUR donations. No donation to WBUR has ever influenced a single On Point program, and never will.

    Wen Stephenson
    Senior Producer, On Point

  • Billy Bob

    hi

  • Billy Bob

    hi sir how u doing

  • nanohistory

    Yes RM, I’m glad I have Jewish friends too, some of the best people I could ever hope to meet, and lots of relatives. Some of them are also Holocaust survivors. None of them are supporters of what Israel has done, or is doing to the Palestinians. The Holocaust survivors do not support Israel at all.

    I read Gideon Levy’s articles and other Israeli journalists at Haaretz, which give you a different view from the official American line. I recommend Avraham Burg’s book “The Holocaust Is Over: We Must Rise from its Ashes.” He’s a former speaker of the Knesset, who pretty much agrees with Normal Finkelstein (who by the way has been banned from Israel — some democracy!)

    The connection you make between the Jewish holocaust and the holocaust of slavery is an odd one. Jews were not vicitimized by Palestinians, it’s the other way round! It wasn’t Palestinians who created the Holocaust it was Germans! and Israel has a very friendly relationship with that country. But one thing that’s rarely mentioned is that Israelis sometimes express a displaced rage against Palestinians, as though they were Germans. Jeffrey Goldberg, an American who chose to work as an Israeli prison guard, admitted this when he wrote about beating Palestinian prisoners as though he were venting his rage against Germans for the Holocaust.

    To connect Israeli’s struggle with the Palestinians to the African American experience is totally misleading, and don’t forget many, if not most Blacks support the Palestinians as they can identify with their oppression.

    Though they would have been fully justified, African Americans have rarely retaliated against the whites who enslaved and oppressed them for six centuries. But like Palestinians under the Occupation, they still await an honest admission of their history. There’s a recent article in Haaretz about the dishonest myths Israeli schoolchildren are being taught and how that’s turning them into little Avigdor Lieberman supporters.

  • A Human Being
  • A Human Being

    Oops, that link didn’t parse correctly. Here is another:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_Troll

    Don’t feed them.

  • A Human Being

    To Rodney,

    The “unintended civilian casualties” you mentioned were very much intended by the Israeli forces. They bombed entire apartment buildings to kill one or two people.

    It’s true the Israelis could have killed many more people if they’d wanted to. They have nukes, and the second-most powerful military in the world after all, and were fighting people with no resources, a few fairly ineffective small arms, and nowhere to hide.

    But the Israelis didn’t do much to minimize the casualties. Civilized countries don’t drop 2,000 pound bombs on densely-populated city blocks and say “oh well, we did the best we could”.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Dear Ali from Boston,

    When I heard this show on NPR it was recorded from earlier in the day. I was pulling my hair out because I desperately wanted to call in and comment on Gaza and ask Mr Wiesel if he shares the opinion of Avi Shlaim, International Israeli scholar on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict who has harsh criticism for the Israeli govt. But since I am on the West Coast, I missed my chance.

    I have been reading Dr Norman Finkelstein’s “Beyond Chutzpah” and I daily read Democracy Now by Amy Goodman and the plentyfull qualified people who have come out against the actions of the Israeli govt.

    I was thrilled when you asked your question however was not surprised about Mr Wiesels commentary and difficulty of staying on topic.

    His answer confirmed Dr Finkelsteins observations about Elie Wiesel and are giving great validity to this book “Beyond Chutzpah”

    I posted the link to this interview on Queen Rania’s channel on YT and I also posted your commentary above with your name.

  • R.M.

    nanohistory your psychology … doesn’t interest me ….as for Norman finkelstein ….I have no use for him either .(he has been fired from most universities he worked for) …What do you say of people who teach their children to hate ?http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RNS8QAIw43s&feature=related
    ….if your friends the ashkenazi Jews from eastern Europe don’t have a connection with Israel , who cares ..
    The sephardic and Misrahi Jews have always been in the middle east especially the ones that have never left Israel from time immemorial . Their Parents speak Arabic, their food is Arabic , their music is Arabic , their dancing is Arabic ….. there were almost one million Jewish refugees kicked out of Arab countries (more than Palestinians )that make up 50% of the Israeli population…Why don’t you talk about that ? they had their keys also they lived in refugee tents in Israel Tell me why the United nation never had a resolution about that?…..Can you give me one democratic country in the middle east that doesn’t have honour killings or will not kill someone who is gay? .Talk about democracy !!!!! I suggest you look up a bit of the Palestinian Nazi connection and learn a bit of history .http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IBFBvceJvIU&NR
    but lets get back to what I said ” nanohistory , I am so glad you have Jewish friends .. …..do you have black friends also ?”, do you understand sarcasm ?…..what are you bla ,bla ,bla bla talking about? Don’t try to put blacks against Jews …..Jews have always helped in the civil right struggle …..Now go do a bit of homework ….

  • R.M.

    for all of you who believe everything you see :http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TfFWr8hxh3I

  • blackeyed susan

    Lots anit semites attackin Wiesel because he don’t subscribe to their hateful views of Israel.

    They want him to repeat their own Jew hating talking points.

    Disgusting.

  • blackeyed susan

    Lots antisemites attacking Wiesel because he don’t subscribe to their hateful views of Israel.

    They want him to repeat their own Jew hating talking points.

    Disgusting.

    You people make me angry you have learned nothing from the Holcaust and are looking for the destruction of the only Jewish State in the world.

  • Sabato

    “Vilified: Telling Lies About Israel”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Op5vT3vnfOk&feature=channel

  • Robbins

    “I have been reading Dr Norman Finkelstein’s “Beyond Chutzpah” Maria from wherever

    Have you also Read Drshowitz’ book? I doubt it.

    Norman F is a lying Jew hater who has been fired from every teaching job he ever held.

    his books have never been peer reivewed and he appeals mainly to antisemites like yourself.

  • Doris Cadigan

    Rodney Falk,

    You claim the reason for the Israeli Army’s invasion of Gaza was prompted
    by constant shelling of Israeli border towns by Hamas over time underscores
    an important truth.

    Especially, when one considers how events on the ground and the actions
    of the Israeli government provoked the firing of rockets into Israeli towns.

    In 2006, the government rejected of the will of the Palestinian people in a free and fair election bid and followed this by an economic embargo against Hamas and the Palestinian people. In June of 2007 the government backed a failed coop by Fatah to ouster Hamas, and last but not least the IDF broke the cease-fire agreement in November 2008 with its own violations as out-lined by the US Law Professor George Bisharat in my previous post.

    Yet let’s not stop there–let’s add another voice–an Israeli voice to this
    discussion and the comments made by Avi Shlaim, a historian in a radio
    interview with Amy Goodman on Democracy Now to show the extent of
    this Israeli government’s scapegoating of Hamas.

    “AMY GOODMAN: Professor Avi Shlaim, Israel says the reason it has attacked Gaza is because of the rocket fire, the rockets that Hamas is
    firing into southern Israel.

    AVI SHLAIM: This is Israeli propaganda, and it is a pack of lies. The important thing to remember is that there was a ceasefire brokered by
    Egypt in July of last year, and that ceasefire succeeded. So, if Israel
    wanted to protect its citizens—and it had every right to protect its citi-
    zens—the way to go about it was not by launching this vicious military offensive, but by observing the ceasefire.

    Now, let me give you some figures, which I think are the most crucial
    figures in understanding this conflict. Before the ceasefire came into
    effect in July of 2008, the monthly number of rockets fired—Kassam rockets, homemade Kassam rockets, fired from the Gaza Strip on Israeli settlements and towns in southern Israel was 179. In the first four months of the ceasefire, the number dropped dramatically to three rockets a month, almost zero. I would like to repeat these figures for the benefit of your listeners. Pre-ceasefire, 179 rockets were fired on Israel; post-ceasefire, three rockets a month. This is point number one, and it’s crucial….

    Hamas observed the ceasefire as best as it could and enforced it very effectively. The ceasefire was a stunning success for the first four months. It was broken not by Hamas, but by the IDF. It was broken by the IDF on the 4th of November, when it launched a raid into Gaza and killed six Hamas men.

    And there is one other point that I would like to make about the ceasefire. Ever since the election of Hamas in January—I’m sorry, ever since Hamas captured power in Gaza in the summer of 2007, Israel had imposed a blockade of the Strip. Israel stopped food, fuel and medical supplies from reaching the Gaza Strip. One of the terms of the ceasefire was that Israel would lift the blockade of Gaza, yet Israel failed to lift the blockade, and that is one issue that is also overlooked or ignored by official Israeli spokesmen. So Israel was doubly guilty of sabotaging the ceasefire, A, by launching a military attack, and B, by maintaining its very cruel siege of the people of Gaza.” http://www.democracynow.org/2009/1/14/leading_israeli_scholar_avi_shlaim_israel

    In addition, your other claim that no one likes war and that unintended civilians casualties are a sad consequence of war sounds like another exaggeration of the actual truth on the ground.

    If no one likes war why were the Israeli people overwhelmingly in support
    of it? Isn’t that a contradiction? In addition, I recall reading a report in
    Time Magazine on how the people in the surrounding towns cheering on
    the IAF’s bombing of Gaza. Here is some of that text:

    “When Israeli air strikes on Gaza began last month, hundreds of people
    from Sderot swarmed to a vantage point known as Horseman’s Hill to
    watch the fiery spectacle and cheer. Nomika Zion was not among them.
    “I listened to one of my neighbors telling Israeli TV that the sound of the bombing was like a symphony, that he’s never heard such powerful music before,” she says. “And I was thinking, How many people are dying be-
    cause of that ‘music’”http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1873137,00.html

    Lastly, I believe the following column speaks for itself on how those un-
    intended civilians became very much the intended casualties and there was
    little or no sadness about it either but outright glee:

    “Israeli soccer matches were suspended during the assault on Gaza.
    When the games resumed last week, the fans had come up with a new chant: `Why have the schools in Gaza been shut down?` sang the crowd. `Because
    all the children were gunned down!` came the answer.”
    http://www.counterpunch.org/gordon01272009.html

    Now to say there was anything “just” about this barbaric violence because
    it had the full support of the Israeli people underscores the moral principle
    there –two wrongs don’t make a right.

    What if the Palestinians took to bombing Israelis out of their settlements
    because they got fed up with telling them to stop building on their land for
    the last 40 yrs? Is that the way people in a civil society ought to behave?

    I don’t think so…not at all! Doris Cadigan, Massachusetts

  • Good Grief

    (I wonder if this page made it to Megaphone or something similar?)

    Susan, Sabato, and Robbins,

    Being disappointed in Elie Wiesel’s apparent lack of empathy for Palestinian suffering is not antisemitic. Opposing the actions of the Israeli government and army is not antisemitic.

    Antisemitism, like all forms of racism, is a real problem. Calling people you disagree with antisemitic diminishes real injustice.

  • R.M.

    Doris Cadigan , I think you have been listening a bit too much to the BBC…. you can see how bias they are against Israel :
    http://www.bbcwatch.co.uk/reports.html
    WBUR , how come you have not asked the BBC why they won’t publish the Balen report ?

  • Nora

    Doris Cadigan you have posted a pack of antisemitic lies.

    Do you expect people to believe that everyone in a soccer stadium chanted that song you made up?

    Give me a break.

    The rest of your obscene post is equally preposterous.

  • Nora

    About Gaza:

    James Kirchick

    “Downplaying Hamas”

    “The persistence of rationalizing terrorism against Israel”

    “Whenever Israel responds to terrorist attacks, it can rely on international bureaucrats, liberal politicians, and humanitarian aid groups to criticize the Jewish state for its “disproportionate” response. The reaction to Operation Cast Lead—launched in late December after three years of incessant rocket attacks on Israeli population centers—has been even harsher than the reaction to Israel’s response to the Second Intifada of the early 2000s. Back then, Palestinian terrorism’s preferred method was dispatching suicide bombers to buses and cafés. The carnage these attacks wrought, visible almost daily, made Israel’s case for self-defense more reasonable in the eyes of Americans who had recently witnessed the immolation of 3,000 of their own countrymen.

    When Israel erected a security fence and imposed a blockade on the Gaza Strip following its withdrawal from the territory in 2005, Palestinian terrorists had to find other means of killing Jews. Hamas chose crude rockets, which, while occasionally injuring and even killing Israeli civilians, were not nearly as lethal as men detonating themselves in crowded shopping malls. Because of this supposed asymmetry in the metrics of the decades-old Arab-Israel conflict, commentators from around the world have declared Israel’s response to Hamas’s provocations “disproportionate.” Yet the attempt to downplay the significance of Hamas terrorism and the expectation that Israel not respond militarily obscure the real suffering of individual Israelis, as well as the strategic cost to Israel of unanswered aggression.

    In order to make the “disproportionate” argument, Israel’s critics must first minimize the threat that Israel responded to in the first place. “Before proceeding, let me state that the Gaza rocket attacks are human rights crimes, and Israel has the right to defend itself,” Mother Jones writer David Corn wrote—before proceeding to explain why Israel didn’t have a right to defend itself: “But that does not mean that in retaliation for about a dozen deaths caused by the rockets from 2004 on, the Israeli Defense Force ought to blow up schools and hospitals in Gaza and kill scores of civilians.” Note how casually Corn dismisses the cold-blooded and unprovoked murder of 12 innocent people, as if they were expendable in the greater quest for a nonexistent “peace process” with a terrorist organization constitutionally committed to Israel’s destruction. Note, too, that Corn neglects to mention that the Israeli military takes great pains to avoid civilian casualties. Israel does so not only on moral grounds, but because it understands that too many people like Corn eagerly await the next opportunity to hold it to an outrageous double standard….”

    http://www.city-journal.org/2009/eon0218jk.html

  • Nora

    More on Gaza:

    “Puzzled in Gaza”

    Mar. 2, 2009

    YVONNE GREEN

    “I’m a poet, an English Jew and a frequent visitor to Israel. Deeply disturbed by the reports of wanton slaughter and destruction during Operation Cast Lead, I felt I had to see for myself. I flew to Tel Aviv and on Wednesday, January 28, using my press card to cross the Erez checkpoint, I walked across the border into Gaza where I was met by my guide, a Palestinian journalist. He asked if I wanted to meet with Hamas officials. I explained that I’d come to bear witness to the damage and civilian suffering, not to talk politics.

    What I saw was that there had been precision attacks made on all of Hamas’ infrastructure. Does UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon criticize the surgical destruction of the explosives cache in the Imad Akhel Mosque, of the National Forces compound, of the Shi Jaya police station, of the Ministry of Prisoners? The Gazans I met weren’t mourning the police state. Neither were they radicalized. As Hamas blackshirts menaced the street corners, I witnessed how passersby ignored them.

    THERE WERE empty beds at Shifa Hospital and a threatening atmosphere. Hamas is reduced to wielding its unchallengeable authority from extensive air raid shelters which, together with the hospital, were built by Israel 30 years ago. Terrorized Gazans used doublespeak when they told me most of the alleged 5,500 wounded were being treated in Egypt and Jordan. They want it known that the figure is a lie, and showed me that the wounded weren’t in Gaza. No evidence exists of their presence in foreign hospitals, or of how they might have gotten there.

    From the mansions of the Abu Ayida family at Jebala Rayes to Tallel Howa (Gaza City’s densest residential area), Gazans contradicted allegations that Israel had murderously attacked civilians. They told me again and again that both civilians and Hamas fighters had evacuated safely from areas of Hamas activity in response to Israeli telephone calls, leaflets and megaphone warnings.

    Seeing Al-Fakhora made it impossible to understand how UN and press reports could ever have alleged that the UNWRA school had been hit by Israeli shells. The school, like most of Gaza, was visibly intact. I was shown where Hamas had been firing from nearby, and the Israeli missile’s marks on the road outside the school were unmistakeable. When I met Mona al-Ashkor, one of the 40 people injured running toward Al-Fakhora – rather than inside it as widely and persistently reported – I was told that Israel had warned people not to take shelter in the school because Hamas was operating in the area, and that some people had ignored the warning because UNWRA previously told them that the school would be safe. Press reports that fatalities numbered 40 were denied….”

    Read it all:

    http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1235898327903&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FPrinter

  • Sabato

    “Being disappointed in Elie Wiesel’s apparent lack of empathy for Palestinian suffering is not antisemitic. Opposing the actions of the Israeli government and army is not antisemitic.” Good Grief

    Good Greif indeed

    People here weren’t just “disappointed” in Wiesel’s answers. They were angry that he didn’t repeat their talking points.

    They also attacked him because he supports the Jewish State.

    Wiesel has said that while the extreme right antisemites hate Jews, the extreme left antisemites hates the Jewish State.

    Having been at the receiving end from both kinds of antisemites he knows what he is talking about even if some troll like good grief doesn’t want to own up to his own hatreds.

  • Sabato

    If people like good greif and the antisemite doris cadgian don’t want to listen to Wiesel they should listen to this guy:

    “Giles Fraser: Why is the Left so anti-Jewish”

    “Anti-Semitic attacks are rising again. The proximate cause seems to have been the Israeli action in Gaza. Since then, the Community Security Trust — the body that monitors these things — has noted an eight­fold increase in anti-Semitic incidents in Britain.

    Perhaps I ought to make clear that I am no apologist for the Israeli action in Gaza. I have spent time with the children the Israeli jets were dropping bombs on. I have been shot at by the Israeli army in Gaza. Yet I still think that some (not all) of the criticism that Israel receives is criti­cism that is looking for any and every opportunity to express itself. This is not just criticism from Israel’s en­emies in the Arab world, or from right-wing racists, but also criticism from the Left.

    The phenomenon of left-wing anti-Semitism is a puzzle to many. Indeed, some deny its very existence. Yet, from the origins of the Left, there have been those that have tapped into this most ancient of prejudices. Marx himself, though Jewish, bought into a wildly anti-Semitic caricature of the Jew as a greedy capitalist usurer.

    Karl Kautsky, one of the leading exponents of orthodox Marxism, argued that: “We cannot say we have completely emerged from the Middle Ages as long as Judaism still exists among us. The sooner it disappears, the better it will be.”

    Of course, no one on the Left would dream of saying such a thing these days, but many argue that this anti-Semitic prejudice has morphed into the rhetoric of anti-Zionism. An attack on the State of Israel is some­times code for an attack on Jews.

    This is tricky stuff, for the state of Israel sometimes genuinely deserves criticism, just as other states some­times do. But the Left’s repeated attacks on Israel, and the specific targeting of Israeli actions whatever they are, add up to a form of socially acceptable anti-Semitism. And what no one, to my knowledge, has sug­gested is that one of the root causes of this is the blind spot of much of the Left concerning religion.

    Like it or not, the very identity and existence of the State of Israel is bound up with Judaism. Israel makes no sense without the Hebrew scrip­tures. But, because a large part of the Left has so wedded itself to the belief that progress comes with secularisa­tion, it cannot accept a religious explanation for anything; so it immediately thinks of it as a form of prejudice. It is significant that Kaut­sky was a virulent anti-religionist, also writing a book condemning Christianity.

    Of course, Christians invented anti-Semitism. But I suspect that unless the Left finds some accom­modation with religion, it will never escape the grip of this most ancient of evils.”

    http://www.churchtimes.co.uk/content.asp?id=70749

    This web site and this radio station is a perfect example of what Giles Fraser is talking about.

  • Sabato

    Too many people here accept the premise that Jews are not to be considered human unless they don’t fight back and condemn those Jews who do.

    By refusing to follow this path Wiesel has proven himself to be a real mentch.

  • Sabato

    From a British web site that fights antisemitism.

    On the humanity and inhumanity of Jews:

    “Time to invoke Shylock in defence of Israel” – Eric Lee

    “I call it “my Shylock moment” and it’s happening more and more. I’ve had the opportunity three times in the last few weeks to represent the Israeli point of view in public debates. As you can imagine, it’s not an easy task. The audiences — two British universities and at a TV studio in London — are overwhelmingly hostile.

    The questions repeat themselves, as do my answers. And every time, there’s one person whose question is a little bit different; this is what triggers the Shylock moment.

    The questioner will speak softly. Their face will show real concern, even pain. And what you’ll hear is not an accusation, but a real question, because the person is genuinely confused.

    They will say something like this: “I’ve been watching the scenes from Gaza on TV. I’ve seen small children standing in front of the ruins of their homes. I’ve seen parents weeping over the loss of their children. And I can’t understand how you can see all this and still support Israel.”

    Obviously when these words come from some propagandist for Hamas they’re designed to deceive. But sometimes it’s a genuine question and deserves a fair answer. When it happens, I find the whole room full of people disappears before my eyes and I focus directly on the person who spoke.

    I pause for a moment, not for effect, but to think through what is probably the most important answer I will have to give in an evening full of difficult questions and more difficult answers.

    What I need to explain to this person is not so much the tactics and strategy of the Israeli army, or the history of the conflict — I’ll have other chances to do this — but something far more difficult, something that is at the heart of the problem. I need to convince them, first and foremost, that we Jews are actually human.

    I realize this sounds like a wild exaggeration — until you’ve come face to face with this kind of audience and this kind of question.

    In Britain — particularly on university campuses — we are facing a rising tide of antisemitism. And antisemitism denies the humanity of the Jew. When we confront it, our job is first of all to establish our credentials as members of the same species as the audience.

    We need to prove that we share their DNA.

    I always begin my answer with a series of negatives. We are not monsters, I say. We do not lack empathy. We are no less horrified than you when we see the needless death and destruction in Gaza. We are not immune to the feelings that you feel.

    And when I say these words, I look carefully at the face of the questioner. If I look around, trying to gauge audience reaction to my words, I stop.

    I’m looking at one person and talking only to him or her. And I find that sometimes, if I get it right, I get a sign of recognition; a sense that my words are getting through.

    Of course I am delighted that I can persuade some people that we Jews are not monsters, that — like them — we want to live in peace and we abhor war. In doing so, I’ve done my bit for Israel and can sleep well at night.

    But I also feel like I’m re-enacting the most famous “defence” of being Jewish ever written — Shylock’s monologue in the Merchant of Venice.

    I find myself telling student audiences in Britain in 2009 that we Jews are “fed with the same food, hurt with the same weapons” as they are. And that if you prick us, we will bleed. And if you poison us, we will die. And it’s not just rhetoric – we really have bled and we really have been poisoned.

    Appearing before hostile audiences in Britain today requires us not only to defend or explain certain Israeli actions, but to defend our very humanity. Just as Shylock was forced to do.

    Yes, things really are that bad.”

    http://engageonline.wordpress.com/2009/03/13/shylock/

  • R.M.

    When will the MEDIA refute the Big FABRICATED lie of AL DURA . That was one of the excuses for killling Daniel Pearl. Shame on the so called human rights activists….

  • Gregor

    One does not have to read these interminable posts and counter-posts (please, try to be succinct)to contemplate the basic inhumanity on both sides of the conflict. I refer to Hamas rockets fired into Israeli towns, and also to Israeli bombs dropped on innocent civilians.

    The general tone and tenor of the comments recorded here simply underscore the basic fact that ‘On Point’ listeners, like politicians and pundits, either love or hate virtually everything Israel does. Moreover, neither side likes to hear what the other side is saying–because each side thinks it holds the truth.

    So, where are we?

  • A Human Being

    Man, this must have made it to Megaphone. Several people arrived all of a sudden to paste in pre-fab posts only tangentially related to Elie Wiesel, and call everyone who disagrees with Israel’s actions an antisemite.

    Well, no. Just no. Calling people who have a disagreement with Israel antisemites destroys any chance of an honest dialog, and guarantees that you won’t win anyone over.

    To Gregor, I do want to hear what the other side is saying. It’s just that when someone disingenuously throws around ‘antisemite’, I stop reading their post.

  • R.M.

    humanbeing , no one is saying you are an antisemite , its only what you are repeating that is antisemitic . what you don’t seem to see is that you are just repeating misinformation that others tell you instead of investigating for yourself . There are many lies being made as truth and history being rewritten . I suggest you watch this documentary : Road to Jenin by Pierre Rehov….
    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-3079049095214906504
    The Palestinians are not as innocent as they pretend to be …

  • Mike

    as for freeman it looked by most accounts that he worked hard for his country and has worked in saudi arabia(OUR ALLY), long with many other countries in the middle east and all over the world but pro israel lobbyist pulled as many strings to discredit him, and twist his recorded and he decided to step down to not give opponents ways to scape-goat him if intel is not politically correct. even know some pretty influential people stood up for him.

    I dont recall any politician be it Democrat or republican that have stood up to israel lobbyist and actually criticizes israel without saying it has a right to defend itself, even know if iran or any other country did the same thing there be sanctions and people ready to go to war to stop them.Currently speaking as today reported on the west bank where some illegal settlements were set up, they lease the mines to israel companies to mine there and profit on ill gotten land.

    peace cannot come to the middle east until israel is not the spoil child of the west u cries foul but the one hitting others while receiving no punishment what so ever. Along with blatantly discriminating against Israeli Jews and killing innocents and just calling them terrorist or supports so some how its okay.

    Dont believe me u can just google or youtube it and see old man, women, children. Along with israel indoctrinating its citizens into the military and fliers sent from rabies stating gazans where animals.

    yet the media, news outlets and politicians look a blind eye, and if criticism starts than the name calling starts, even the IDF put out a video showing a video of bombing a hamas target and cheer about it, than turned out to by a shop owner and his sons and pictures, and facts showing they lied about it,thanks to the Human rights people within Israel even put up a site to prove there information yet the u.s. leaders remain silence due to lobbyist are they that powerful and why cant someone have the guts to stand up to them is what i dont get.

  • Mike

    Doris Cadigan, Massachusetts

    right on, dont let them try and silence u by calling u names to end debate about Israel’s actions.

    let the truth ring in they hollow ears and what they wish not to admit.

    and the truth shall set us free.

  • R.M.

    mike “ill gotten land “….Tiny Israel got attacked by 3 countries (again), not kicked to the sea , they won the war (again) and the territories . (If the Palestinians had won they would have killed all the jews). Palestinians don’t want to negotiate …get over it ….since when do the losers make the rules?
    “indoctrinating its citizens to war”…have you seen the baby suicide bombers?
    “don’t let them “…..What do you mean by “them”?….the JOOOOOOOOOs?……Now that sounds antisemtic!!!!!……..

  • Sabato

    “It’s just that when someone disingenuously throws around ‘antisemite’, I stop reading their post.” Posted by A Human Being

    So you are “human being” and those that disagree with you are what ‘human beens?”

    Give me a break you know very well that much of the nonsense posted here by Doris Cadigan and ‘mike” is antisemitic trash.

    I don’t care if you are an antisemite or not just have the guts to say so outloud.

    Unless of course you are a moron and don’t know what you are saying.

  • Sabato

    Mike says: “let the truth ring in they hollow ears and what they wish not to admit.

    and the truth shall set us free.” Posted by Mike

    you post like a true Christian antisemite.

    You and the Jew hating Doris Cardiga make a couple.

  • Sabato

    “Dont believe me u can just google or youtube it and see old man, women, children. Along with israel indoctrinating its citizens into the military and fliers sent from rabies stating gazans where animals.” Mike

    You are drooling, you Jew hating boob.
    Callign Rabbis “rabies” this must be a Nazi talking point.

    Most of the antiIsrael videos on you tube are fake were produced in order to defame Jews.

    Why dont’ you link to some of these videos and let readers here see how fake they are?

    You are a real prize mike.

  • Mike

    sorry here is the flier i was talking about

    http://www.islamonline.net/servlet/Satellite?c=Article_C&cid=1232976491307&pagename=Zone-English-News%2FNWELayout

    sorry on-point, but some on this board retorted to calling others names instead of debating so i placed some sites and video to show that they are missing information and to show others the information they are missing.

  • Doris Cadigan

    To reach any kind of a meaningful consenus about Elie Wiesel’s defense
    of Israel and its savage attack on Gaza and the anger/despair of the
    Palestinian people (and those around the world today) one has to return
    to the root cause of this conflict.

    Both Thodore Herzl and later Ben Gurion expressed a desire to take hold
    of the Palestinian peoples’ ancestorial homeland and make it their own.

    ““We should try to spirit the penniless Arab population across the
    borders by procuring employ-ment for it in transit countries, while
    denyin g it any employment in our own country.Both the process of
    expropriation and the removal of the poor must be carried out
    discreetly and circum-spectly.” Theodore Herzl , 1895

    “We take now what the UN gives us, later we take the rest.” Ben Gurion,
    1947 upon receiving the UN partition of Palestine.

    Hence it was no accident but by sheer design that Zionist gangs took to
    terrorizing Palestinians in their homes and villages prior to 1948 and
    uprooted over 750,000 people from their homes and razed some 500
    Palestinian villages and refused to allow them to return to “their homes”
    as stated in UN Resolution 194. (A precondition of Israel’s membership in
    the UN, the other accepting a full fledged sovereign Palestinian state.)

    And by the way repeating this whole shocking scenario in 1967 when the
    Israeli army invaded the territories and shot people on sight, burned them
    out of their homes and confiscation land and declared martial law. However,
    this time the Palestinian people decided to stay rather than flee. (please listen
    to this awarding eye witness account by Salman Abu Sitta who was 10 yrs old
    at the time and note how he says they “destroyed my life” ever since.
    ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EJrW-BhgMx0 )

    Now the Palestinian people are being asked to accept this injustice and
    recognize “Israel’s right to exist” on their land and I should add beyond
    the 1947 partition line and indeed the Green line of 1967 while Israel
    fails to recognize and respect the Palestinian peoples’ right to exist on
    their own land.

    Yet as the writer John V. Whitbeck notes the Palestinian people have
    their pride and the current demands that they recognize the presence of
    a colonial power right to exist is unprecedented in history. In addition,
    he notes there is a big difference between asking the Palestinian people to “recognizing Israel’s existence” and “Israel’s right to exist.” Please note his following text:

    “There is an enormous difference between “recognizing Israel’s existence”
    and “recognizing Israel’s right to exist.” From a Palestinian perspective, the difference is in the same league as the difference between asking a Jew to acknowledge that the Holocaust happened and asking him to concede that
    the Holocaust was morally justified. For Palestinians to acknowledge the occurrence of the Nakba – the expulsion of the great majority of Palestini-
    ans from their homeland bet ween 1947 and 1949 – is one thing. For them
    to publicly concede that it was “right” for the Nakba to have happened
    would be something else entirely. For the Jewish and Palestinian peoples, the Holocaust and the Nakba, respectively, represent catastrophes and injustices
    on an unimaginable scale that can neither be forgotten nor forgiven.

    To demand that Palestinians recognize “Israel’s right to exist” is to demand
    that a people who have been treated as subhumans unworthy of basic human rights publicly proclaim that they are subhumans. It would imply Palestinians’ acceptance that they deserve what has been done and continues to be done to them. Even 19th-century US governments did not require the surviving native Americans to publicly proclaim the “rightness” of their ethnic cleansing by European colonists as a condition precedent to even discussing what sort of
    land reservation they might receive. Nor did native Americans have to live under economic blockade and threat of starvation until they shed whatever pride they had left and conceded the point.”
    ( http://www.csmonitor.com/2007/0202/p09s02-coop.html_

    Hence the hypocrisy of US & EU officials and those in the US Congress begins
    to show its true colors. Yet, until Israel fully recognizes the Palestinian peoples’ rights on an equal footing with its own and that includes getting out of the territories, removing its troops & settlers and allowing the Palestinian people
    to return ” to their homes” (at least those who wish too. I believe 10% do. ) and compensating others for their property.

    Hence nothing the Palestinians people can do do whether Israel considers it
    right or wrong will justify Israel’s “right” to defend itself.

    Finally, I wish to add I recall in one of Elie Wiesel’s books how he said he was
    “still afraid” as a Jew and I don’t doubt his fear for one minute especially with
    the rage that’s in the world today over Israel’s appalling mistreatment of the
    the Palestinian people.

    Thus I urge him and other Jewish leaders to come together realizing Jews
    have no right to promote themselves on the backs of the Palestinian people
    and their ancestorial homeland as it is a receipe for another national disaster.

    I am sorry to be so blunt. Doris Cadigan, Massachusetts

  • R.M.

    BBC gets it right for once

    The BBC got it right here, but probably for the wrong reasons. Very funny !

    See below for the usual BBC / Channel 4 / Sky News guidelines for Israel….

    1. always accept the Palestinian version without question

    2. interview at least 8 Palestinian supporters to every Israeli supporter

    3. assume the UN is impartial, and a shining beacon of justice in a dark world

    4. assume any video / photos provided by Palestinians are always reliable – never question their veracity. It’s probably not worth bothering viewers with the fact that much of the media is doctored or staged – this will only confuse them

    5. gloss over the last 60 years of history (never mention how 6 Arab armies tried to destroy Israel in ’48, ’67, and ’73)

    6. don’t report how Hamas (etc) bully, torture and murder their own people, or misappropriate aid/finance (or if you do, play it down)

    7. NEVER mention that Iran / Hamas / Fatah have vowed to destroy Israel and kill every Jew in the world (if you do mention it, assume they don’t really mean it)

    8. Report only the words that Fatah say in English, never what they say in Arabic

    9. if you interview an Israeli (or misguided supporter such as Colonel Kemp, Mark Regev), make sure you interrupt them frequently. If you’re coming off second best, tell them you’re running out of time

    10. if interviewing a Palestinian (or Annie Lennox, Alexei Sayle), make sure you ask them lots of really open questions, allowing lots of time to air their views without interruption – nod frequently to show your support. Don’t interrupt them, as this is disrespectful

    11. above all, the tone of your voice should exhibit disapproval towards Israel, and sympathy towards Palestinians

    12. ensure you use the word “occupation” as much as you can (don’t get involved in meaningless discussions concerning how Israel either paid huge sums for swamps / wilderness in ’48, or won it when arabs declared war on them)

    13. never report anti-semitic attacks/incidents from the UK or elsewhere (we are unsure as to why these are increasing, but certain it has nothing to do with how we are portraying the situation)

    14. don’t report Pro-Israel activity such as marches – nobody cares, and these people are misguided anyway. If the politicians from all parties turn a blind eye, why shouldn’t we ?

    15. if you get the facts wrong (Israel murders 1000’s in Bethlehem), never issue an apology or retraction

    16. It is probably more news-worthy if you paint Israel as the aggressor – so don’t mention that Hamas launched over 6,000 rockets into Israel after Israel had vacated the Gaza strip

    17. On proportionality, probably not worth mentioning comparisons with civilian casualties in Iraq, Afghanistan, or WW2 Germany (this will only confuse people). The fact that Hamas deliberately booby-trapped civilian homes and made people go into them, we are sure, has nothing to do with civilian casualties….

    15. probably not worth mentioning the Bible – Jesus, a Jew, born in Bethlehem, visiting the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem (this is only 2000 years of history anyway….)

    Note to Producers – make sure that when interviews are taking place that you loop some video showing ultra-left wing Norwegian doctors running after ambulances performing chest compression on live patients, and female Hamas supporters screaming uncontrollably about how their terrorist husbands were mercilessly martyred by the IDF. Remember, it really doesn’t matter what the interview says because people will remember the images

    Neil Turner , Watford, UK (01.24.09)

  • R.M.

    Doris cadigan , where do you get all your fabricated lies?….They are just too fantastic …..If the arabs are so badly treated and facing a genocide as you say ….why is the arab population growing rapidly and is now 20% of israel have the best education (for women also )and health care and safety net in the middle east? ..The mythology you continue to make is absurd …don’t you think its about time to face reality and to finally grow up ? how about telling me why 1 million jews were kicked out of arab countries and made refugees and no one cares……Why do you care about the Arabs and not the jews?

  • Good Grief

    No one in this thread has said anything antisemitic. What’s with the slurs, Israeli apologists?

  • R.M.

    Good Grief What slurs are you talking about ? Its a question of justice . If you don’t really know what is going on , and just repeating lies coming from people with agendas then the lies have to be stopped . How about working for something that is real . How about Darfur . Don’t you not wonder why there were millions of people in the streets for 500 hamas fighter killed in Gaza and no one seems to care about the millions of killed and raped victims in Darfur ? Think about it :The arabs have a goood propaganda war and their financing is reaching every corners of the earth …To say that Israel is expansionist is laughable . Have you seen the size of Israel compared to Arab countries ? Israel the size of new jersey. To make peace with Egypt the Sinai desert was given back .For Gaza in reward for peace got thousands of rockets …..If you can’t see this you can’t see anything….or you don’t want to see anything….

  • R.M.

    Anti-zionism as Anti-semitism in europe: The Mistreatment of Israel by the Media

    by Raphael Israeli

    Since the 1980s several high level European politicians have made radical anti-Semitic declarations which accorded with Arab and Muslim positions. In a public statement in 1982, Greek Socialist Prime MinisterAndreas Papandreou compared Israelis to Nazis. But no mainstream European leader went as far as Christian Democrat Giulio Andreotti,many times the Prime Minister and then the President of Italy, who declared in Geneva, during an inter-parliamentary conference in 1984,his support for a Saddam Hussein’s Iraqi motion, which equated Zionism with racism, supported the boycotting of Israel, and defended the right of the “armed struggle for the liberation of Palestine [that is terrorism].Italy was then the only Western country to vote with the Soviet Bloc for this motion. Later, such occurrences have become even more frequent. In April 2002, Franco Cavalli spoke at a demonstration of the Swiss-Palestinian Society in Bern. He was then the parliamentary leader of the Social Democratic Party (SP), which is part of the Swiss government coalition. He claimed that Israel, “very purposefully massacres an entire people” and undertakes the “systematic extermination of the Palestinians.” Was he ignorant of the comparatively higher number of Palestinians massacred by the Syrians, Lebanese, Jordanians, and their own infighting, or his anti-Semitism drove him to ignore the numbers? Or he could not explain why the Israelis were so inadequate and impotent at “annihilating” the Palestinians, if they are stronger and more numerous than ever before. Senior members of the Greek Socialist Party routinely used Holocaust rhetoric to describe Israeli military actions against Arabs, even when they are defensive in nature. In March, Parliamentary Speaker in Athens, Apostolos Kaklamanis, referred to the “genocide”of the Palestinians, forgetting that no one people can undergo so many genocides and still survive. Jenny Tonge, a Liberal Democrat MP in the U.K. declared at a meeting of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign in 2004 that she might consider becoming a “suicide bomber” if she lived in the Palestinian territories. But in contrast to the other cases, which remained unrefuted, her party distanced itself from her statement, explaining that it did not condone terrorism.

    Raising the very question of Israel’s legitimacy, or even “recognizing its right to exist,” in itself carries a connotation of suspicion, uncertainty, hesitation, temporariness, and remonstration, as if it were under probation, like a criminal on parole, who has to prove constantly that he deserves his freedom. If Israel concedes, withdraws, shrinks back to its “natural size” (as the Egyptians would have it), obeys, effaces itself, admits “guilt” or plies to short behaves like a dhimmi of old, then it is considered by the nations demands from it, or submits to calumniations against it, in of the world as peaceful, reasonable, moderate, and conciliatory. But when she stands up to her enemies, demands that her rights, territory, heritage, security, people, way of life, and sovereignty be safeguarded and respected, then the world is amazed at its arrogance, self-assertion, aggression, selfishness, spirit of rebellion, fanaticism, extremism, and disregard of others. When diplomats and world leaders admit Israel’s right to exist (thank you), this is often taken as a special favor do to it and some Jews are happy at the daily confirmation of that favor, which they were never accustomed to take as a matter or natural right. The dhimmi spirit that they perpetuate dictates to them a grateful mode of behavior towards anyone who condescends to affirm what otherwise would have been considered a matter of course. That is the reason why sixty years after independence Jews continue to express in their national anthem the “hope” of attaining freedom in their land. They cannot believe they did already.

    Consider this: a world leader or a minor one tells Israel that she has the right to exist, but she ought to evacuate territory, allow Palestinian refugees to go back to their previous homes, give up a certain amount of her defenses, and depend on international guarantees. This means that her right to exist is conditional on her meeting certain expectations even if they run contrary to her interests or to her very chances of survival in her hostile environment. Thus, not only is Israel, of all nations, required to take steps towards her own demise, as a prerequisite to her conditional recognition by others, but this also implies that if she does not comply, her admission into the family of nations may be rescinded. Can anyone tell the British that they would be recognized provided they return the Falklands to their owners, or the Americans, the Canadians, and the Australians that they can be recognized only if they restored rights to the dispossessed natives that they had conquered, or that the Japanese, Syrians, Iraqis, and Sudanese will be accepted only when they recognize their minorities and stop persecuting them, or Iran, China, and Egypt—only if they accepted democracy or stopped threatening their neighbors? Unthinkable?

    Not in the case of Israel, even though it cannot be reproached for any of those violations or improprieties. Take for example the question of Jerusalem, the capital of Israel and the Jewish people for the past 3,000 years. In December, 1995, the General Assembly of the UN adopted a resolution, with an overwhelming majority, as in previous years, denying the validity of the Israeli laws, which confirmed united Jerusalem as the capital of modern Israel once again. That resolution also condemned the “Judaization” of Jerusalem as if someone blamed the Chinese for the Sinification of Beijing or the French for the Francisation of Paris, or Saudi Arabia for the Islamization of Mecca. When the Arabs dominated East Jerusalem, which they never made their capital, not only did they effect a full Arabization of the city, but they did that at the detriment of Jewish sites such as Temple Mount, the Mount of Olives, the Jewish Quarter, and no one complained ( that is except for the Israelis, but those are not counted). But as soon as the Jews restored their sites to their sovereignty, without as much as touching the Aqsa compound, which the Muslims had knowingly constructed upon the holiest site of the Jews, then outcries about “Judaization” began, which was heralded as “threatening world peace.” So, when the UN declares that the Israeli measures were “null and void,” one wonders whether the restored Jewish Quarter, which had been destroyed by the Arabs, should have remained in ruins, or demolished again after it was repaired, or that the reparations of cemetery of the Mount of Olives, which had been demolished by the Jordanians and its tombstones used to pave a road, should revert to its state of profanation in order to qualify for the terms of that resolution.

    In October 1996 the European community demanded that Israel should rescind all those measures of restoration and construction and return things to their “original state.” Original since when? If the splendor of Jerusalem is returned to its Davidic and Solomonic original, then al-Aqsa Mosque should have been removed to allow for the original Temple to re-emerge. Or perhaps they meant that the latrines that the Jordanians had constructed on the sites of the synagogues that they destroyed in the Old Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem should be reinstituted on the ruins of those now reconstructed sites? The occasion for those European demands was the reopening of an ancient tunnel, dating back 2,400 years in history, to the times of the Jewish Hasmonean Dynasty, before there was any idea of Europe, of Christianity, Islam, Arabs, or Palestinians. And because the Muslim Palestinians who had usurped the holy Jewish Temple Mount, now claim that the tunnel endangered their holy sites, themselves built on the ruins of the ancient Jewish Temple, the Europeans moved to make Israel close it again. And all that, under the Palestinian threat of violence if Israel would not conform. Which one of those new European nations would have acquiesced in a situation where its right to relate to its past heritage was called into question?

    Jerusalem is but an example. At stake is the self-imputed right of Western countries to determine the standards of behavior to which Israel is held and their presumption to act as self-appointed supreme arbiters of that conduct. Exactly like the Jews in their midst, who were suspicious and accused until proven innocent, so is the Jewish state. It is in this sense that the Jewish state has become the Jew among states. For decades, most nations took the right to call Israel “the Jewish State,” or the “Tel Aviv Government,” lending to it the same legitimacy as the “Vichy Government” had; they made their representations and sent their representatives to that non-existing address; the international media also dispatched their reports from Tel Aviv, while the pictures they showed often originated from Jerusalem, the seat of the government of Israel. All that in order to avoid recognition of Jerusalem, the ancient capital of Israel, which had predated their own respective capitals, as the reconstituted center of modern Israel. So widespread has been that fiction that many people ended up believing that it was Tel Aviv, not Jerusalem, that was the capital of Israel. What other country in the world would have been submitted to such a treatment, or accepted the systematic negation of its legitimacy of which the choice of a capital city is part?

    This inordinately critical view of the Jews in history has somehow carried over and rubbed off on Israel as well, and directly aided the Arabs and Muslims in their rejection of Israel, lock, stock, and barrel. The intense scrutiny and obsessive coverage of Israel’s every fault and detail sends to Tel Aviv (but more to Jerusalem) regiments of reporters and correspondents, more than to any other world capital save Washington, DC. And all those journalists have to justify their presence in Jerusalem (under the Tel Aviv disguise) and hunger for news to feed their avid media. Thus, the most absurd of gossip can become reported news, and the most insignificant events can become “history.” In reports about the Intifadah, for example, articles were written about the special wood used to manufacture police truncheons to maintain order, and the workshops where they were made. Similarly, we have seen that the tedious and repetitive detail that is of no interest elsewhere finds its way to international media.

    The nature of the “Jewish” truncheon, which caused suffering to the Palestinians and also tarnished Jewish reputation, was only a symptom. No one has ever checked the truncheons used by the British police in Northern Ireland or by the French police in quelling street riots in the Parisian slums. But a Jewish truncheon deserves a special scrutiny. Palestinian children and adolescents can throw Molotov cocktails at Israeli police, occasionally killing, wounding, or maiming them, but those are “only kids” standing up courageously against their oppressors; to be repressed by police wielding those redoubtable Jewish truncheons, that is quite another matter, for Jews have to submit to special standards of conduct, unlike all others. A Palestinian spokesman made the remark: “We are so lucky that our enemies are the Israelis. If they were Singhalese, who would care to mention us?” The late Father Marcel Dubois, Head of the Dominican Order in Jerusalem, made a similar comment: “Had the occupied territories been under Margaret Thatcher’s responsibility, the Intifadah would have lasted three days only and no one would have talked about it any more.”25 Both statements were corroborated by a former member of the foreign press corps in Jerusalem Thomas Friedman, of the NewYork Times, who repeated the same observation in almost the same words: “the great luck of the Palestinians is that they are in a state of conflict with Israeli Jews.”

    Raphael Israeli

    Copyright – Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

  • http://www.NewDemocracyWorld.org John Spritzler

    Israeli leaders and Israeli Basic Law define Israel as a Jewish state. In 1947-8 and again in 1967 non-Jews who were born inside Israel’s Green line fled from their homeland and villages and became refugees. Millions of Palestinian refugees and their descendants are stateless and many live in refugee camps. About 75% of the people in Gaza are such refugees from villages inside what is now Israel. The Palestinian refugees want the right to return to inside Israel proper where they were born (or where the parents or grandparents of the children of refugees were born).

    This is an individual human right,which no third party can waive, and it is explicitly upheld in the 13th Article of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights: “Everyone has a right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country.” This individual human right has nothing to do with state borders or sovereignty. This right has nothing to do with whether a person left their country voluntarily or involuntarily. But Israel denies Palestinian refugees their right of return for one reason only–they are not Jewish. Nothing said so far is controversial among people who seriously examine the facts, whether they are pro-Zionist or not.

    The anger of Palestinians and their fellow Arabs or Muslims is anger at what they quite understandably view as the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians from their homeland for the purpose of creating (in 1948) and maintaining (today) at least an 80% Jewish population in Israel. Denying people their human rights in order to ensure that the “right” ethnic group is a majority in a country is indeed the practice that the phrase “ethnic cleansing” denotes.

    Israel is based on the principle that it is a Jewish state. A Jewish state that purports to also be a democracy, as Israel does, requires a large Jewish majority and that is why Israel is committed to doing whatever is required, even practicing ethnic cleansing, to ensure a Jewish majority. Israeli leaders give the following justifications for the ethnic cleansing:

    1. Theodor Herzl, the founder of Zionism in 1897 said, and most Zionists today believe, that: “All gentiles are, latently if not overtly, anti-Semitic and therefore Jews cannot be safe living among and as the equals of gentiles, but must have a ‘state of their own’–a Jewish state, and this is more important than the human rights of non-Jews.” [Note that the stereotype of all gentiles being anti-Semitic is itself an ethnic stereotype, one that is false by the way, as a true reading of European history makes clear.]

    2. “Since the Palestinians fled from their homes inside what is now Israel _voluntarily_, they waive their right of return. [Note that this is a racist argument, since those who make it would never apply the same logic to, say, Americans who leave the United States voluntarily to take a vacation in Europe. Do they forfeit their right to return? Of course not. Then why do Palestinians?]

    3. “Jews fled Arab countries and they are not allowed to return, so it’s an even swap.” [Ever hear of "two wrongs don't make a right?" Besides, we are talking about _individual_ human rights, not "group" rights. What would those who make this argument say if Germany denied German Jews who fled the Nazis their right of return on the grounds that some Germans living in non-German countries were not allowed to return? I doubt they would say, OK, it's an even swap. But if an argument only applies to Palestinians and not to Jews, then it is a racist argument...again.]

    4. “Palestinians do not accept that Israel has a right to exist.” [So what? Saying "Israel has a right to exist" is equivalent to saying that "A Jewish state in Palestine has a right to exist," which in turn is equivalent to saying that "The ethnic cleansing of non-Jews from Israel that is required to make Israel a Jewish state with its Jewish majority population is justified." Palestinians should no more agree that their ethnic cleansing is right, than Jews should have had to agree that their treatment by the Nazis was right because the "Aryan state" had a right to exist. Should slaves in the ante-bellum American South have had to agree that the slave-based Confederacy had a right to exist?]

    Those who support Israel’s policy of denying Palestinians their right of return must address the moral issue of ethnic cleansing. The rightness or wrongness of ethnic cleansing has nothing whatsoever to do with a) whether the BBC is biased, or b) whether some Palestinians are terrorists. Just as the bias of newspapers in the U.S. in 1860 had nothing to do with whether slavery should have been abolished. Just as the question of whether Nat Turner’s slave revolt was “terrorism” in 1831 when it killed 40 innocent white children had nothing whatever to do with whether slavery was morally right or wrong.

    Israel uses violence against Palestinians to protect something that does not deserve to be protected–the ethnic cleansing carried out to ensure that Israel’s population is at least 80% Jewish. If Israel granted Palestinian refugees the same right of return (with compensation for property stolen from them) that Germany grants Jews who fled the Nazis, then the conflict in Israel/Palestine would be end. Those few Palestinians who still wanted to target violence against Jews would be considered anti-social criminals by the vast majority of Palestinians, and they would never be able to carry out such violence. Jews would be able to live in peace for a change.

    But then the Zionist leaders, the generals and billionaires who dominate ordinary Jews and drive down their living standards (as the American upper class is doing to ordinary Americans) would no longer have the “bogeyman” of “Arab terrorists” with which to frighten ordinary Jews into obedience. This is one reason that the commonsense approach to settling the conflict is never implemented by those with real power. They don’t want peace. They want social control and domination of “their own” people, and this requires keeping “their own” people frightened of a foreign enemy. The ethnic cleansing of non-Jews from Israel does not benefit ordinary Jews; on the contrary it benefits the upper class ruling elite of Israel who use the ethnic cleansing to foment a “Jew versus non-Jew” Orwellian war of social control.

    –John Spritzler (www.NewDemocracyWorld.org )

  • Sabato

    “sorry on-point, but some on this board retorted to calling others names instead of debating>..”

    Mike, you don’t debate you just post anti-Jewish propaganda.

    You are a real prize.

  • Sabato

    “Finally, I wish to add I recall in one of Elie Wiesel’s books how he said he was
    “still afraid” as a Jew and I don’t doubt his fear for one minute especially with
    the rage that’s in the world today over Israel’s appalling mistreatment of the
    the Palestinian people.”

    Doris is one of those people who in the 1930′s would have been on the side of the German Nazis claiming that Jews were mistreating them.

    She is obsessed with Jews.

    Her claims of Jewish mistreatment of Palestinians is the BIG LIE of our times.

    Here are some facts:

    Let’s put the Arab Israeli conflict in some perspective:

    “Despite the media’s obsession with the Mideast conflict, it has cost many fewer lives than the youth bulges in West Africa, Lebanon or Algeria.

    In the six decades since Israel’s founding, “only” some 62,000 people (40,000 Arabs, 22,000 Jews) have been killed in all the Israeli-Arab wars and Palestinian terror attacks.

    During that same time, some 11 million Muslims have been killed in wars and terror attacks — mostly at the hands of other Muslims.

    In Arab nations such as Lebanon (150,000 dead in the civil war between 1975 and 1990) or Algeria (200,000 dead in the Islamists’ war against their own people between 1999 and 2006),”

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123171179743471961.html

    This puts the obsession with Israel in perspective!

  • Sabato

    “Puzzled in Gaza”

    http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1235898327903&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FPrinter

    YVONNE GREEN ,

    “I’m a poet, an English Jew and a frequent visitor to Israel. Deeply disturbed by the reports of wanton slaughter and destruction during Operation Cast Lead, I felt I had to see for myself. I flew to Tel Aviv and on Wednesday, January 28, using my press card to cross the Erez checkpoint, I walked across the border into Gaza where I was met by my guide, a Palestinian journalist. He asked if I wanted to meet with Hamas officials. I explained that I’d come to bear witness to the damage and civilian suffering, not to talk politics.

    What I saw was that there had been precision attacks made on all of Hamas’ infrastructure. Does UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon criticize the surgical destruction of the explosives cache in the Imad Akhel Mosque, of the National Forces compound, of the Shi Jaya police station, of the Ministry of Prisoners? The Gazans I met weren’t mourning the police state. Neither were they radicalized. As Hamas blackshirts menaced the street corners, I witnessed how passersby ignored them.

    THERE WERE empty beds at Shifa Hospital and a threatening atmosphere. Hamas is reduced to wielding its unchallengeable authority from extensive air raid shelters which, together with the hospital, were built by Israel 30 years ago. Terrorized Gazans used doublespeak when they told me most of the alleged 5,500 wounded were being treated in Egypt and Jordan. They want it known that the figure is a lie, and showed me that the wounded weren’t in Gaza. No evidence exists of their presence in foreign hospitals, or of how they might have gotten there.

    From the mansions of the Abu Ayida family at Jebala Rayes to Tallel Howa (Gaza City’s densest residential area), Gazans contradicted allegations that Israel had murderously attacked civilians. They told me again and again that both civilians and Hamas fighters had evacuated safely from areas of Hamas activity in response to Israeli telephone calls, leaflets and megaphone warnings.

    Seeing Al-Fakhora made it impossible to understand how UN and press reports could ever have alleged that the UNWRA school had been hit by Israeli shells. The school, like most of Gaza, was visibly intact. I was shown where Hamas had been firing from nearby, and the Israeli missile’s marks on the road outside the school were unmistakeable. When I met Mona al-Ashkor, one of the 40 people injured running toward Al-Fakhora – rather than inside it as widely and persistently reported – I was told that Israel had warned people not to take shelter in the school because Hamas was operating in the area, and that some people had ignored the warning because UNWRA previously told them that the school would be safe. Press reports that fatalities numbered 40 were denied.

    I WAS TOLD stories at Samouni Street which contradicted each other, what I saw and later media accounts. Examples of these inconsistencies are that 24, 31, 34 or more members of the Fatah Samouni family had died. That all the deaths occurred when Israel bombed the safe building it had told 160 family members to shelter in; the safe building was pointed out to me but looked externally intact and washing was still hanging on a line on one of its balconies. That some left the safe building and were shot in another house. That one was shot when outside collecting firewood. That there was no resistance – but the top right hand window of the safe building (which appears in a BBC Panorama film Out of the Ruins” aired February 8) has a black mark above it – a sign I was shown all day of weaponry having been fired from inside. That victims were left bleeding for two or three days.

    I saw large scoured craters and a buckled container which appeared to have been damaged by an internal impact (its external surfaces were undamaged). Media accounts of Samouni Street don’t mention these possible indications of explosive caches (although the container is visible on media footage). The Samouni family’s elder told me during a taped interview that he had a CD film of the killings. As far as I’m aware, no such film has been made public. He also told me that there are members of his family who have still not been found.

    The media have manufactured and examined allegations that Israel committed a war crime against the Samounis without mentioning that the family are Fatah and that some of its members are still missing. They have not considered what might flow from those facts: that Hamas might have been active not only in the Samouni killings but in the exertion of force on the Samounis to accuse Israel.

    THE GAZA I saw was societally intact. There were no homeless, walking wounded, hungry or underdressed people. The streets were busy, shops were hung with embroidered dresses and gigantic cooking pots, the markets were full of fresh meat and beautiful produce – the red radishes were bigger than grapefruits. Mothers accompanied by a 13-year-old boy told me they were bored of leaving home to sit on rubble all day to tell the press how they’d survived. Women graduates I met in Shijaya spoke of education as power as old men watched over them.

    No one praised their government as they showed me the sites of tunnels where fighters had melted away. No one declared Hamas victorious for creating a forced civilian front line as they showed me the remains of booby trapped homes and schools.

    From what I saw and was told in Gaza, Operation Cast Lead pinpointed a totalitarian regime’s power bases and largely neutralized Hamas’s plans to make Israel its tool for the sacrifice of civilian life.

    Corroboration of my account may be found in tardy and piecemeal retractions of claims concerning the UNWRA school at Al-Fakhora; an isolated acknowledgment that Gaza is substantially intact by The New York Times; Internet media watch corrections; and the unresolved discrepancy between the alleged wounded and their unreported whereabouts.

    The writer is a poet and freelance writer who lives in London. Her collection Boukhara was a 2008 Smith/Doorstop prize winner. She also translates the poetry of Semyon Lipkin, the Russian World War II poet.”

    http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1235898327903&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FPrinter

  • Sabato

    “No one in this thread has said anything antisemitic. What’s with the slurs, Israeli apologists?” Posted by Good Grief

    Nonsense, bad grief, and you know it.

    You sound like an apologist fro Hamas and Hezbollah the two most lethal Jew hating organizations in the world today.

    You are an antisemitic propagandist and should post on David Duke’s site and not here.

  • Sabato

    “Is anti-Zionism hate?”

    http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-pearl15-2009mar15,0,607331,print.story

    “Yes. It is more dangerous than anti-Semitism, threatening lives and peace in the Middle East.”

    By Judea Pearl

    “In January, at a symposium at UCLA (choreographed by the Center for Near East Studies), four longtime Israel bashers were invited to analyze the human rights conditions in Gaza, and used the stage to attack the legitimacy of Zionism and its vision of a two-state solution for Israel and the Palestinians.

    They criminalized Israel’s existence, distorted its motives and maligned its character, its birth, even its conception. At one point, the excited audience reportedly chanted “Zionism is Nazism” and worse.

    Jewish leaders condemned this hate-fest as a dangerous invitation to anti-Semitic hysteria, and pointed to the chilling effect it had on UCLA students and faculty on a campus known for its open and civil atmosphere. The organizers, some of them Jewish, took refuge in “academic freedom” and the argument that anti-Zionism is not anti-Semitism.

    I fully support this mantra, not because it exonerates anti-Zionists from charges of anti-Semitism but because the distinction helps us focus attention on the discriminatory, immoral and more dangerous character of anti-Zionism.

    Anti-Zionism rejects the very notion that Jews are a nation — a collective bonded by a common history — and, accordingly, denies Jews the right to self-determination in their historical birthplace. It seeks the dismantling of the Jewish nation-state: Israel.

    Anti-Zionism earns its discriminatory character by denying the Jewish people what it grants to other historically bonded collectives (e.g. French, Spanish, Palestinians), namely, the right to nationhood, self-determination and legitimate coexistence with other indigenous claimants.

    Anti-Semitism rejects Jews as equal members of the human race; anti-Zionism rejects Israel as an equal member in the family of nations.

    Are Jews a nation? Some philosophers would argue Jews are a nation first and religion second. Indeed, the narrative of Exodus and the vision of the impending journey to the land of Canaan were etched in the minds of the Jewish people before they received the Torah at Mt. Sinai. But, philosophy aside, the unshaken conviction in their eventual repatriation to the birthplace of their history has been the engine behind Jewish endurance and hopes throughout their turbulent journey that started with the Roman expulsion in AD 70.

    More important, shared history, not religion, is today the primary uniting force behind the secular, multiethnic society of Israel. The majority of its members do not practice religious laws and do not believe in divine supervision or the afterlife. The same applies to American Jewry, which is likewise largely secular. Identification with a common historical ethos, culminating in the reestablishment of the state of Israel, is the central bond of Jewish collectivity in America.

    There are of course Jews who are non-Zionists and even anti-Zionists. The ultra-Orthodox cult of Neturei Karta and the leftist cult of Noam Chomsky are notable examples. The former rejects any earthly attempt to interfere with God’s messianic plan, while the latter abhors all forms of nationalism, especially successful ones.

    There are also Jews who find it difficult to defend their identity against the growing viciousness of anti-Israel propaganda, and eventually hide, disown or denounce their historical roots in favor of social acceptance and other expediencies.

    But these are marginal minorities at best; the vital tissues of Jewish identity today feed on Jewish history and its natural derivatives — the state of Israel, its struggle for survival, its cultural and scientific achievements and its relentless drive for peace.

    Given this understanding of Jewish nationhood, anti-Zionism is in many ways more dangerous than anti-Semitism.

    First, anti-Zionism targets the most vulnerable part of the Jewish people, namely, the Jewish population of Israel, whose physical safety and personal dignity depend crucially on maintaining Israel’s sovereignty. Put bluntly, the anti-Zionist plan to do away with Israel condemns 5 1/2 million human beings, mostly refugees or children of refugees, to eternal defenselessness in a region where genocidal designs are not uncommon.

    Secondly, modern society has developed antibodies against anti-Semitism but not against anti-Zionism. Today, anti-Semitic stereotypes evoke revulsion in most people of conscience, while anti-Zionist rhetoric has become a mark of academic sophistication and social acceptance in certain extreme yet vocal circles of U.S. academia and media elite. Anti-Zionism disguises itself in the cloak of political debate, exempt from sensitivities and rules of civility that govern inter-religious discourse, to attack the most cherished symbol of Jewish identity.

    Finally, anti-Zionist rhetoric is a stab in the back to the Israeli peace camp, which overwhelmingly stands for a two-state solution. It also gives credence to enemies of coexistence who claim that the eventual elimination of Israel is the hidden agenda of every Palestinian.

    It is anti-Zionism, then, not anti-Semitism that poses a more dangerous threat to lives, historical justice and the prospects of peace in the Middle East.

    Judea Pearl is a professor at UCLA and the president of the Daniel Pearl Foundation.”

  • Sabato

    Here is a lecture on the Gaza war that some people will find interesting, though I expect that Jew hating activists and Hamas supporters like Doris, Mike and good grief troll will want to stay away.

    https://mediapilot.georgetown.edu/sharestream2gui/GT-Video.jsp?myname=0d21b6201f103fed011f423c5f5e01d3&cid=0d21b6201f103fed011f4208b74801be&windowSize=full&originalAspectRatio=false

  • Someone call the waaaahhmbulance

    Any bets on when the Megaphone trolls will stop their flailing tantrum?

    Here’s a hint: no one’s listening to you.

  • Nora

    You are right you are no one, not even a troll just a piece of machinery at wbur, waaaahhmbulance.

  • http://www.NewDemocracyWorld.org John Spritzler

    In my post (above) I pointed out that the Palestinian refugess have a right to return even if their flight from Israel was voluntary. To avoid distracting from this point, I did not point out that serious Israeli historians of the 1948 period, be they pro-Zionist like Bennie Morris or anti-Zionist like Ilan Pappe, have shown, based on the archival records and other legitimate evidence, that most Palestinians who fled either were violently driven out of their villages by Zionist military forces, or they fled in fear for their lives because of prior massacres against Palestinians carried out by Zionist military forces, such as the one led by Menachem Begin against the village of Deir Yassin. Arab leaders, contrary to the Zionist myth, told Palestinians to remain in their villages unless their lives were in immediate danger. But remember, the question of _why_ Palestinians fled is irrelevant with respect to the fact that they have a right to return no matter why they fled, and Israel’s denial of that right to the Palestinian refugees, simply because they are not Jewish, is ethnic cleansing, which is morally wrong and inexcusable.

    Speaking of excuses for Israel’s ethnic cleansing, I listed the top 4 excuses (with rebuttals) in my above post, but there is a 5th excuse that some use: “God gave the land to the Jews.” Some of the fanatical Israel settlers use this argument. If anybody reading these comments agrees that this fundamentalist argument holds any water, they should say so, and expect to be justly ridiculed. If we allowed such arguments to shape our views it would be a recipe for eternal war and bloodshed. Most of Israel’s prime ministers, including David Ben Gurion and Golda Meir, were atheists, as were many of the Ashkenazi Jews who immigrated to Palestine and formed the dominant part of the new Jewish state’s population. Despite their atheism, they used the Biblical argument freely. Their argument for cleansing Israel of most of its non-Jewish inhabitants was essentially, “God does not exist, and he gave the land to the Jews.”

  • Mike

    again sabato, and r.m attack, attack, instead of again debating whats going on there prefer to call names and try and use anti-semite to kill debate, there have been many others people that showed that most the stuff u said is questionable yet u still attack, and attack, is that u are racist towards non jews?,

    Also to not many others holocaust survivors is against for the state of israel is doing are they too anti-Semite? Calling people Nazis are u serious, Nazis hate all accept there race there as some in israel that think there race is Superior and the true race along the same lines of the Nazi thinking. it makes no logical sense to call someone a nazi for trying to defend people who are being mistreated, abused, killed by israel.

    but your comments looks to be more inline by the way of your post that if anyone could be close it would be both sabato and r.m. who show no sympothy for the suffering of others much like Nazi.

    or is it that u cant handle the truth about the state of Israel? is it to tough to handle so u have to unwaveringly try and defend actions which cannot be?

    so attack some more if u like it will only prove my point, that u hate non-jews and will blindly deny whats going on much like the Nazis.

    as my statements the suffering of others and yours were that “israel is always right no matter what,and if u disagree than your a anti-semite”

  • R.M.

    john Spritzler

    So would you say that all the Cuban who left Cuba during the revolution should be able to return and get all their property back? what about the partition of India and Pakistan in 1947 , should we bring the descendants of the 10 millions people who were part of the population transfers? …what about the 1 million Jews from Arab countries and their descendants will they get all their property back stolen when they were kicked out ? We can go on and on and on and on ……I think you forget that 1/3 of the population before 1948 was Jewish and the other 1/3 was Christians . Don’ t give me bull about ethnic cleansing , if there was ethnic cleansing it was the Jewish population in the Arab countries ….who had been living there before Islam ….Why isn’t there any more Jews or why are they not allowed in Saudi Arabia?

  • R.M.

    As far as the lies and propaganda the comes out of the Arab media , two words: AL DURA

  • mike

    honest reporting, my donkey

    http://www.honestreporting.org/Intimidation_Bias.html

    http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1235410704498&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

    Sabbagh says that most of the pro-Israel e-mails were generated by HonestReporting, a Web site that “claims to be the largest Israel media advocacy group in the world.”

    Yet there was no evidence that any of the authors of these e-mails had actually read the BMJ article they were criticizing, Sabbagh maintains.

    In his analysis of the e-mails nearly five years after the Summerfield article appeared, Sabbagh concluded “that the BMJ was the target of an orchestrated campaign to silence criticism of Israel.

    “There is nothing intrinsically wrong with organizing an effective lobby group,” writes Sabbagh, “but the ultimate goal of some of the groups that lobby for Israel or against Palestine is apparently the suppression of views they disagree with.”

    Sabbagh also charged that as a result of another pro-Israel campaign, the International Diabetes Foundation recently apologized for an article on the difficulties faced by diabetic Palestinians in Gaza, and the editor of the foundation’s Diabetes Voice on-line journal resigned. He also describes a similar experience in 1981 when World Medicine, a popular medical magazine, published an article criticizing then-prime minister Menachem Begin, and says the pro-Israel campaign “led to the dismissal of Michael O’Donnell as editor and the closure of the magazine.”

    “Such campaigns cannot be allowed to succeed – not so much because they are wrong about the issues – but because their ultimate aim is censorship and suppression by means of intimidation,” Sabbagh concludes.

    Writer and broadcaster O’Donnell, who was editor of World Medicine for 15 years, writes in the new BMJ issue that the British journal should be “applauded” for publishing Sabbagh’s analysis.

    “The best way to blunt the effectiveness of this type of bullying is to expose it to public scrutiny,” he wrote. He added that some of the hostile and even disgusting letters he received were addressed to his children.

    O’Donnell, who identifies himself as being in a family “linked harmoniously by marriage to an Israeli Jewish family that has contributed to the political and cultural development of Israel,” says most of the messages came from the US.

    British journalist Jonathan Freedland, who describes himself as “a trustee of Index on Censorship, which campaigns for freedom of expression” and whose “mother was born in Palestine in 1936,” suggests the BMJ “grow a thicker skin.

    In today’s wired world, he says, wading into any topic of controversy triggers a deluge of e-mails. “It simply comes with the territory… The harsh reality is that what Sabbagh described as a rare, exceptional event is increasingly common – and clearly not confined to the Israel-Palestine conflict.”

    Freedland, who is Jewish, added that “there is a strong desire to see the pressure from pro-Israel activists as somehow unique. But each of the elements Sabbagh cites – demands for resignations, the enlisting of non-readers of the publication involved – have been present in these other cases.

    “True, Israel-Palestine probably generates more venom than most topics, but that is hardly one-way traffic. In January 2009, anti-Israel activists forced their way into the offices of the pro-Israel lobby group, the British Israel Communications and Research Center (BICOM), damaging computer equipment, cutting phone lines and throwing documents out of the window.

    “True, BICOM is a partisan lobbying organization, not an independent medical journal like the BMJ. But that episode surely represents a rather more direct attempt at silencing a point of view than sending nasty e-mails,” Freeland says.

    Prof. Elihu Richter, a public health expert and head of the Hebrew University-Hadassah School of Public Health and Community Medicine’s Genocide Prevention Program, told The Jerusalem Post: “My own direct personal experience with the BMJ is that it does have a bias against things Jewish and Israeli.”

    By contrast with the “repetitive opinion pieces the BMJ has published by Summerfield and others, it has rejected quality papers from Israeli researchers, including one on the fine trauma care Hadassah provides for all, including Palestinians, for the flimsiest of pretexts,” he says.

    “The problems seen with the BMJ are also seen in Britain’s other leading general medical journal, The Lancet, whose editor, Richard Horton, published a report on Gaza years ago that was full of misinformation and distortions based hearsay… and invokes double standards, includes mis- and disinformation, and implicitly accepts a lower standard for the value of human life of Israelis than it does for his own,” Richter continues.

    boths sides have issues anf mis information, but u cannot deny the suffering of gazans,and israel goal to keep a there state 80 percent jews, even now they are looking for ways to kick out or disinfrancise the ones currently there by taking away the the people to repersent for them in voting.

    its not anti-semite to point this out and fight for human-rights for people that often cannot for themselves, much like what happen in the 1960 in america, and lincolns time,even ww2

  • mike

    democracy is “freedom of press”(did not happen for objective reporting in gaza was not allowed),

    “human rights”(abused and abused over and over again along with countless violations documented),which even the hardest of the right-wing israelie cant deny.

    israel did win the war but are still taking land, name a country that still is taking land from the minority after UN law prohibits it. (besides Zimbabwe of course)

    “basic equality” again israel fails to do.

    your new or soon to be pm. is still for more settlements, and taking of arab jews rights for speaking against what happen in gaza

  • R.M.

    Mike have you been drinking ? or drinking the Kool aid?
    What was that all about ? as far as honest reporting:does the truth hurt you that much? http://www.honestreporting.com/articles/reports/The_Photo_that_Started_it_All.asp

    like it or not , you can rant all you want , but fact are facts.

  • Ali of Boston

    To Maria from Santa Barbara;

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts and info.

    I checked out the:
    DemocracyNow by Amy Goodman at:
    http://www.democracynow.org/
    and found it a refreshing source of news which I had not seen in the US before.

    I didn’t know about Dr Finkelsteins or his book (“Beyond Chutzpah”) before.

    Now it seems to be a legitimate request/suggestion from/to Mr. Tom Ashbrook to balance the appearance of Mr. Elie Wiesel and his book introduction with airing a program with people such as:

    - Dr. Finkelstein to introduce his “Beyond Chutzpath”,
    - Mr. Charles Freeman to talk about his experience,
    - Prof. Noam Chomsky to convey his expertise,

  • R.M.

    Ali This is not bash the jews kind of show , for that you have to listen to the arab media ……there’s also a certain Newton radio program that that spews all kinds of venomous hatred……

  • Mike

    r.m. im done after this but countless people have given u facts, and all u replied with is there liers, anti-Semite and u give sources so one sided its not even funny.

    please read your comment as i guess u dont, “facts are facts” and no matter what u do or sabato the truth will and is coming out about israel ethic cleansing and treatment to non-jews and there humans rights violations,

    but u can go on and one with your fairly tale view of israel doing no wrong, and everyone is a wrong and is anti-semite if u point the truth out also found something to check out about pre-israel. I beat u cant say one good thing about muslim or the gazans?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0CxlAmonz0A&feature=channel

    u sir are the one whoses sippest the kool-aid and no futher reply to the needless garage u been spewing

  • Sabato

    “boths sides have issues anf mis information, but u cannot deny the suffering of gazans,and israel goal to keep a there state 80 percent jews…”

    Mike you are either an ignorant oaf or a Jew hater.

    Israel is a Jewish State the way that Jordan, Lebanon, Syria Egypt, etc are Arab States.

    There are more than a dozen Arab States and you object to one small Jewish State?

    This is rank bigotry.

    “its not anti-semite to point this out and fight for human-rights for people that often cannot for themselves, much like what happen in the 1960 in america, and lincolns time,even ww2.”

    Mike your analagies are pathetic.

    During ww2 six million Jews were murdered by people like you because Jews had no State of their own.

    Comparing Palestinians today to WW2 is based on malicious ignorance.

    Yes your posts and those of Doris are antisemitic.

    I don’t care if you post antisemitic lies, just be honest enough to admit that you are a Jew hater.

  • Sabato

    Speaking of coolaid drinkers:

    Mike says: “I beat u cant say one good thing about muslim or the gazans?”

    Here is one good thing about Gazans.

    You are not a Gazan. That’s something Gazans can be thankful for.

    You alos can’t write, you can’t spell, you can’t think and you can’t reason or sift through historical evidence.

    Mike you (and Doris) like all Jew haters you are a loser.

  • R.M.

    thanks Sabato ,I will drink to that ….

  • Mike

    Hi Sabato i have no problem with jews but just people like yourself, who can only attack instead of being civil and debating.

    Also,

    1. you’re a fool
    2. when u comment on someone spelling u should spell correctly yourself “You alos” is not a word.
    3. you win noone over when u attack everyone with a different view than u.
    4. again u could not say anything good about gazans or muslim so most people will see u as a muslim, christian hating jew.
    5.history and evidence is against your twisted beliefs.
    6. im not gazan but im American so i dont have to worry about IDF troops trying to shoot my family for being gazans.
    7.all u did was prove you are a extremist.
    8. being civil would help your cause then being a donkey.
    9. try as u might but in the long run your going to fail.
    10. if u dont understand read #1.

  • R.M.

    If the holocaust of millions of Jews and non Jews (among them gays and gypsies) can be denied …..anything can be denied ……There will always be people who can be brainwashed into hating, because they hate themselves or their life……

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    To Robbins,

    who calls Dr Norman Finkelstein ( son of Holocoust survivors) a lier.

    The fact is that his analysis on Elie Wiesel is right on! Mr Wiesels words during the interview and how he distorted Ali’s question are proof to me, Dr Finkelstein knows what he is talking about.

    To add to this, my grandmother saved two Jewish people during WWII by hiding them in her house in Nazi occupied Holland. My grandfather was forced on transport to a Nazi workcamp and she stayed behind risking her life and that of her three children under the age of 5!

    She did this not because these people were Jewish, but because they …………..were human!!!!!!!!

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    And when THE Israeli scholar AVI SHLAIM on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict comes out and condemns the actions of the Israeli govt, it is a warning sign to all that dissent is coming from within the Jewish community as well.

    For a complete interview with Avi Shlaim see Democracy Now with Amy Goodman where a recent interview with Dr Finkelstein can be found as well.

    In 2004 the World Court ruled that the Israeli govt had been violating human rights.

  • Sabato

    Mike, lives ot post here.

    He is like a mechanical doll all wound up who has been programmed to say antisemitic things.

    LOSER!

  • Sabato

    Maria,

    I call Norman liar (not a lier). He is worse than a liar he is demented psychotic who can’t keep a job.

    It’s his hatred of Jews that keeps him going. If he didn’t have that he would have killed himself a long time ago.

  • Nora

    “To add to this, my grandmother saved two Jewish people during WWII by hiding them in her house in Nazi occupied Holland.”
    Posted by Maria from Santa Barbara

    I don’t believe you, got any proof?

    Anyone can say anything here on line.

    “She did this not because these people were Jewish, but because they …………..were human!!!!!!!!”

    Of course they were human but they were also Jews. Just as you are human, I think, but like me you are also a woman.

    You can be both, you know.

  • Sabato

    Maria you sound like Mike’s twin:

    “And when THE Israeli scholar AVI SHLAIM on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict comes out and condemns the actions of the Israeli govt, it is a warning sign to all that dissent is coming from within the Jewish community as well.”

    Condemning actions of any government is legitimate.

    Condemning the Israeli people is not.

    How many Arab scholars have condemned the actions of their government much less those of say Hamas which also murders it’s own people?

    How about you condemning attacks on Jewish children and women by Palestinian terrorists?

  • Toby

    You guys are ridiculous, no one is reading this crap any more.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Fact: No ‘group’ has a monopoly on human suffering. Human suffering and oppression and injustice has occurred throughout history.

    Jewish dissent on the Israeli govt is flourishing and readily available online for anybody to read.

    In order to gain a more intellectual and informed opinion it does require an open mind and willingness to understand the universal human rights as recognized by the major human right organizations like Amnesty International.

    It is intellectual dishonesty to not recognize that Elie Wiesel did NOT answer Ali’s very legitimate question where he pointed out that Mr Wiesels silence contributes to the fact that now Mr Ahmadinajad becomes the spokesperson for human rights violations in Gaza. With other words, if Mr Wiesel would speak out JUST LIKE Avi Shlaim ( leading ISRAELI scholar on the conflict) it would take away from the Ahmadinajads of the world.

    What is so hard to understand people?

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Fact: No ‘group’ has a monopoly on human suffering. Human suffering and oppression and injustice has occurred throughout history.

    Jewish dissent on the Israeli govt is flourishing and readily available online for anybody to read.

    In order to gain a more intellectual and informed opinion it does require an open mind and willingness to understand the universal human rights as recognized by the major human right organizations like Amnesty International.

    It is intellectual dishonesty to not recognize that Elie Wiesel did NOT answer Ali’s very legitimate question where he pointed out that Mr Wiesels silence contributes to the fact that now Mr Ahmadinajad becomes the spokesperson for human rights violations in Gaza. With other words, if Mr Wiesel would speak out JUST LIKE Avi Shlaim ( leading ISRAELI scholar on the conflict) it would take away from the Ahmadinajads of the world.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Anti-semitism is not equal to dissent.
    Just like dissent is not equal to being unpatriotic.

    DISSENT is a must for any free society!

    Dissent it the HIGHEST form of patriotism!

    The concept of dissent has been heavily under attack under the Bush administration.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    An excellent read on the ‘divide and conquer’ technique of the Bush Adminstration on the Palestinian leadership is David Rose’s article “Gaza Bombshell”.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    As for the ‘proof’ that was demanded by Nora…..how silly…like a grown up woman and mother of three would make something up like thatand ofcourse this is the internet were the ‘proof’ I have cannot be presented to you. However it sounds like ‘holocaust denial’ to me just like Gaza massacre denial!

  • Sabato

    “In order to gain a more intellectual and informed opinion it does require an open mind and willingness to understand the universal human rights as recognized by the major human right organizations like Amnesty International.”

    More general nonsense by maria from barbaria

    Talk to Hamas about human rights, BIGOT!

    Hamas has as its aim the extermination of Israelis. It’s in their charter.

  • Sabato

    “Anti-semitism is not equal to dissent.
    Just like dissent is not equal to being unpatriotic.”

    Do you make these dumb sayings by yourself or is someone feeding them to you, Maria.

    You are a transparent antisemite.

    Oh you are also very patriotic. Being antisemitic is being patriotic in the Muslim world as well as in many European countries.

  • Sabato

    “An excellent read on the ‘divide and conquer’ technique of the Bush Adminstration Rose’s article “Gaza Bombshell”. Maria from Santa Barbara

    More crap from Maria. You sound like a reatrde leftist.

    Here is a better article:

    James Kirchick
    “Downplaying Hamas: The persistence of rationalizing terrorism against Israel”

    http://city-journal.org/2009/eon0218jk.html

  • Nora

    “As for the ‘proof’ that was demanded by Nora…..how silly…like a grown up woman and mother of three would make something up like thatand ofcourse this is the internet were the ‘proof’ I have cannot be presented to you.” Maria from barbaria

    How convenient. I don’t even believe that you are a mother of three or even one. MOthers don’t sit around posting antisemitic propaganda on the websites day after day.

  • Nora

    “However it sounds like ‘holocaust denial’ to me just like Gaza massacre denial! Maria

    If you really believe this than you are more of a moron than anyone here could have imagined, Maria.

    There was no Gaza massacre and the burden of proof in on you to prove that there was one.

  • R.M.

    Sometime in history when the tide is finally down the scum appears on the surface ..Now is another time in history when we see all the anti-Semites (aka anti-Zionists ) come out of the woodwork ….The Arab and Muslim world already has shown it ugly face . Along with the Protocols of the Elders of Zion translations of Mein Kampf are selling like hot cakes all over the Arab speaking world. Adolf Hitler’s is their hero and 11 different publishers are printing the book in Arabic. all you Palestinian apologists who can’t see the whole picture of the deceit on Israel are either complete politically correct fools or hate Jews …..

  • R.M.
  • R.M.

    By defending hamas , you are defending Sharia law .

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZjEZwpuQPbM&feature=related

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    A little lesson in debate!
    Nobody here including myself has spoken in favor of Hamas. Nobody here, including myself has spoken against Jews.
    It has become quite apparent that the ad hominem attacks are coming from people who refuse to be engaged in real dialogue. So here is a new concept for the crowd who has resulted to ad hominem attacks rather than ‘trying’ to debate disagreements.

    An ad hominem argument, also known as argumentum ad hominem (Latin: “argument to the man”, “argument against the man”) consists of replying to an argument or factual claim by attacking or appealing to a characteristic or belief of the source making the argument or claim, rather than by addressing the substance of the argument or producing evidence against the claim.

    The process of proving or disproving the claim is thereby subverted, and the argumentum ad hominem works to change the subject.

    Ad hominem argument is most commonly used to refer specifically to the ad hominem abusive, or argumentum ad personam, which consists of criticizing or attacking the person who proposed the argument (personal attack) in an attempt to discredit the argument. It is also used when an opponent is unable to find fault with an argument, yet for various reasons, the opponent disagrees with it.

    Other common subtypes of the ad hominem include the ad hominem circumstantial, or ad hominem circumstantiae, an attack which is directed at the circumstances or situation of the arguer; and the ad hominem tu quoque, which objects to an argument by characterizing the arguer as acting or arguing in accordance with the view that he is arguing against.

    Ad hominem arguments are always invalid in syllogistic logic, since the truth value of premises is taken as given, and the validity of a logical inference is independent of the source making the inference. However, ad hominem arguments are rarely presented as formal syllogisms, and their assessment lies in the domain of informal logic and the theory of evidence.[1] The theory of evidence depends to a large degree on assessments of the credibility of witnesses, including eyewitness evidence and expert witness evidence. Evidence that a purported eyewitness is unreliable, or has a motive for lying, or that a purported expert witness lacks the claimed expertise can play a major role in making judgements from evidence.

    Argumentum ad hominem is the inverse of argumentum ad verecundiam, in which the arguer bases the truth value of an assertion on the authority, knowledge or position of the source asserting it. Hence, while an ad hominem argument may make an assertion less compelling, by showing that the source making the assertion does not have the authority, knowledge or position it claims, or has made mistaken assertions on similar topics in the past, it cannot provide an infallible counterargument.

    An ad hominem fallacy is a genetic fallacy and red herring, and is most often (but not always) an appeal to emotion.

    It does not include arguments posed by a source that contradict the source’s actions.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    As for ‘Sharia Law’….the definition does NOT exist.
    It is ‘Islamic Sharia or Islamic Law.

    When one has the need to debate , one has to know its material.

    Thank you!

  • Sabato

    A little lesson in debate! fro Maria.

    Know what you are talking about Maria.

    “Nobody here including myself has spoken in favor of Hamas.”

    Wrong when you refuse to take into account the way hamas has murdered innocent Jewish civilians and had fired rockets at Israeli towns while condemning Israel for defending itself then you are taking the side of Hamas.

    “Nobody here, including myself has spoken against Jews.”

    Wrong again, in mocking Elie Wiesel and in comparing Gaza to the Holocaust you have spoken out against Jews.

    “It has become quite apparent that the ad hominem attacks are coming from people who refuse to be engaged in real dialogue.”

    What dialogue is possible with people who hate you? None!

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Sabato “Wrong when you refuse to take into account the way hamas has murdered innocent Jewish civilians and had fired rockets at Israeli towns while condemning Israel for defending itself then you are taking the side of Hamas. ”

    Avi Shlaim, a professor of international relations at Oxford University who served in the Israeli army in the mid-1960s. He is the author of numerous books, most notably The Iron Wall: Israel and the Arab World. His latest book is Lion of Jordan: King Hussein’s Life in War and Peace. Avi Shlaim is widely regarded as one of the world’s leading authorities on the Arab-Israeli conflict.

    AMY GOODMAN: Professor Avi Shlaim, Israel says the reason it has attacked Gaza is because of the rocket fire, the rockets that Hamas is firing into southern Israel.

    AVI SHLAIM: This is Israeli propaganda, and it is a pack of lies. The important thing to remember is that there was a ceasefire brokered by Egypt in July of last year, and that ceasefire succeeded. So, if Israel wanted to protect its citizens—and it had every right to protect its citizens—the way to go about it was not by launching this vicious military offensive, but by observing the ceasefire.

    Now, let me give you some figures, which I think are the most crucial figures in understanding this conflict. Before the ceasefire came into effect in July of 2008, the monthly number of rockets fired—Kassam rockets, homemade Kassam rockets, fired from the Gaza Strip on Israeli settlements and towns in southern Israel was 179. In the first four months of the ceasefire, the number dropped dramatically to three rockets a month, almost zero. I would like to repeat these figures for the benefit of your listeners. Pre-ceasefire, 179 rockets were fired on Israel; post-ceasefire, three rockets a month. This is point number one, and it’s crucial.

    And my figures are beyond dispute, because they come from the website of the Israeli Foreign Ministry. But after initiating this war, this particular table, neat table, which showed the success of the ceasefire, was withdrawn and replaced with another table of statistics, which is much more obscure and confusing. Israel—the Foreign Ministry withdrew these figures, because it didn’t suit the new story.

    The new story said that Hamas broke the ceasefire. This is a lie. Hamas observed the ceasefire as best as it could and enforced it very effectively. The ceasefire was a stunning success for the first four months. It was broken not by Hamas, but by the IDF. It was broken by the IDF on the 4th of November, when it launched a raid into Gaza and killed six Hamas men.

    And there is one other point that I would like to make about the ceasefire. Ever since the election of Hamas in January—I’m sorry, ever since Hamas captured power in Gaza in the summer of 2007, Israel had imposed a blockade of the Strip. Israel stopped food, fuel and medical supplies from reaching the Gaza Strip. One of the terms of the ceasefire was that Israel would lift the blockade of Gaza, yet Israel failed to lift the blockade, and that is one issue that is also overlooked or ignored by official Israeli spokesmen. So Israel was doubly guilty of sabotaging the ceasefire, A, by launching a military attack, and B, by maintaining its very cruel siege of the people of Gaza.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Sabato “Wrong again, in mocking Elie Wiesel and in comparing Gaza to the Holocaust you have spoken out against Jews.”

    AVI SHLAIM: President Bush described Ariel Sharon as a man of peace. I’ve done a great deal of archival research on the Arab-Israeli conflict, and I can honestly tell you that I have never come across a single scintilla of evidence to support the view of Ariel Sharon as a man of peace. He was a man of war, a champion of violent solutions, a man who rejected totally any Palestinian right to self-determination. He was a proponent of Greater Israel, and it is in this context that I see his decision to withdraw unilaterally from Gaza in August of 2005.

    The withdrawal was officially called the unilateral Israeli disengagement from Gaza. I would like to underline the word “unilateral.” Ariel Sharon was the unilateralist par excellence. The reason he decided to withdraw from Gaza was not out of any concern for the welfare of the people of Gaza or any sympathy for the Palestinians or their national aspirations, but because of the pressure exerted by Hamas, by the Islamic resistance, to the Israeli occupation of Gaza. In the end, Israel couldn’t sustain the political, diplomatic and psychological costs of maintaining its occupation in Gaza.

    And let me add in parentheses that Gaza was a classic example of exploitation, of colonial exploitation in the postcolonial era. Gaza is a tiny strip of land with about one-and-a-half million Arabs, most of them—half of them refugees. It’s the most crowded piece of land on God’s earth. There were 8,000 Israeli settlers in Gaza, yet the 8,000 settlers controlled 25 percent of the territory, 40 percent of the arable land, and the largest share of the desperately scarce water resources.

    Ariel Sharon decided to withdraw from Gaza unilaterally, not as a contribution, as he claimed, to a two-state solution. The withdrawal from Gaza took place in the context of unilateral Israeli action in what was seen as Israeli national interest. There were no negotiations with the Palestinian Authority on an overall settlement. The withdrawal from Gaza was not a prelude to further withdrawals from the other occupied territories, but a prelude to further expansion, further consolidation of Israel’s control over the West Bank. In the year after the withdrawal from Gaza, 12,000 new settlers went to live on the West Bank. So I see the withdrawal from Gaza in the summer of 2005 as part of a unilateral Israeli attempt to redraw the borders of Greater Israel and to shun any negotiations and compromise with the Palestinian Authority.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Sabato, it is intellectual dishonesty to claim that only Jewish people have endured real atrocities or to say that Jewish people could never commit crimes themselves. There is no such thing.

    Avi Shlaim in his own words is refuting everything you say. Is the leading scholar on the conflict and Anti-semite? Or are you just closing your ears and eyes while pointing fingers in all directions but your own?

    I know I will not convince you of anything or you would have been equiped with a more complete picture of the issue but I am merely continuing to post for those that are willing to expand their horizons and who do not close their eyes and ears to human suffering.

    Goodluck to you!

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Last but not least..

    AMY GOODMAN: Israel calls Hamas “terrorist.” What is your definition of “terror”?

    AVI SHLAIM: My definition of “terror” is the use of violence against civilians for political purposes. And by this definition, Hamas is a terrorist organization. But by the same token, Israel is practicing state terror, because it is using violence on a massive scale against Palestinian civilians for political purposes. I don’t hold a brief for Hamas. Hamas is not a paragon of virtue. Its leaders are not angels. They harm civilians indiscriminately. Killing civilians is wrong, period. That applies to Hamas, and it applies equally to the state of Israel.

    But there are two points I would like to make about Hamas, and that is—the first point is that it was elected in a fair and free election in January 2006. It was an impeccable election, monitored by a number of international observers, including President Jimmy Carter. So it is not just a terrorist organization. It is a democratically elected government of the Palestinian people and the representative of the Palestinian people in Gaza, as well as the West Bank.

    And the second point that I would like to make is that since coming to power, Gaza has moderated its political program. Its charter is extreme. Its charter denies the legitimacy of a Jewish state. The charter calls for an Islamic state over the whole of historic Palestine. The charter has not been revived, but since coming to power, the leadership of Hamas has been much more pragmatic and stated that it is willing to negotiate a long-term ceasefire with the state of Israel for twenty, thirty, forty, maybe even fifty years.

    Thirdly, Hamas joined with Fatah, the rival group, the mainstream group, on the West Bank in a national unity government in the summer of 2007. That national unity government lasted only three months. Israel, with American support, helped to sabotage and to bring down that national unity government. Israel refused to deal with a Palestinian government which included Hamas within it. And shamefully, both the United States and the European Union joined in Israel in this refusal to recognize a Hamas-dominated government, and Israel withdrew tax revenues, and European Union withdrew foreign aid, in a shameful attempt to bring down a democratically elected government.

    So, I do not defend Hamas, but I think that it hasn’t received a fair hearing from the international community, and Israel has done everything to sabotage it all along.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    AMY GOODMAN: Professor Shlaim, you say it’s done everything to sabotage it, except at the beginning, when you say it supported Hamas to weaken Fatah, which it now supports.

    AVI SHLAIM: Indeed. Israel has always played the game of divide and rule. This is a very good tactic in times of war, to divide your enemies and pick them off one by one. No one can complain about that. But divide and rule isn’t a good tactic in times of peace. If your aim is to achieve peace with the Arabs, then you should want unity among the Palestinians and unity in the Arab world. But Israel continued to play this game of divide and rule.

    Hamas emerged in the course of the First Intifada in the late 1980s. It is the Islamic resistance movement. The mainstream movement, Fatah, was led by Yasser Arafat. And Israel gave tacit encouragement and support to the Islamic resistance in the hope of weakening the secular nationalists led by Yasser Arafat. It was a dangerous game to play, because the end result of this game was that Hamas emerged as the strongest Palestinian political party.

    And Israel helped Hamas inadvertently in another way, because Fatah signed the Oslo Accord with Israel in 1993. It expected the Oslo Accord to lead to a two-state solution. And yet, Israel, after the election of Benjamin Netanyahu in 1996, reneged on the Israeli side of the deal. So, the Oslo Accord, the Oslo peace process wasn’t doomed to failure from the start. It failed because Israel, under the leadership of the Likud, reneged on its side of the deal. So that left the Palestinians with nothing but misery and poverty and frustration and ever-growing Israeli settlements on the land. And it was this context that led to the success of Hamas at the last elections. So Israel has a lot to explain in the rise to power of the Hamas movement.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    I do want to emphazise that Mr Asbrook did try to correct Elie Wiesel in answering Ali’s question the right way. And I apologize for posting excerpts of other news outlets on your channel.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    One more thing…here is Elie Wiesel saying that President Carter is exaggerating but it is Elie Wiesel who fails to recognize that it has been Israel breaking the ceasefire. See above interview with Avi Shlaim.

  • R.M.

    Maria .No one here is interested or impressed by your little snobbish little rules ….S.N.O.B. .(Latin:sine nobilitate )
    (french sans nobilite ) ….you seem quite quaint with yourself and your little lecture…do you now feel better after your little tantrum ?

  • R.M.

    This is for you Maria the feminist sharia law in its glory ….

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jDLb2GuIM3Y&feature=related

  • R.M.

    This is for you my little maria …This is what happens to women all over the Muslim and arab world ……

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sQQFjvcYefk&feature=related

  • R.M.

    Avi shlaim blames israel for all the problems in the middle east ….”.During the cease fire hamas sent only a few rockets that’s all” how cute are these little innocent terrorists ….of course your media is going to praise him …all his claims have been discredited , he has manipulated sources to fit his political agenda. Of course the palestinians will use him he repeats all their lies …..and they are good liars ……….

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t_B1H-1opys#IIfAj_eg2EE

  • R.M.
  • R.M.
  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Why would anybody expect peace in the Middle East be possible when people cannot even recognize the issues, refuse to educated themselves and conduct themselves as adults right here online?

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    And to imply that women are only abused under Islamic Law is simplistic as well. Women are abused in all cultures, across the globe.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    How can the world expect sanity from 1-2 million people living on a 25 mile strip, locked up, deprived of running water and sewage, economically cut off etc etc?

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    How is it that Ali’s concern that Ahmadinajad is becoming the spokesperson for human atrocities in Gaza is twisted and turned into something it is not?

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Fact: July 2004 World Court advisory opinion on the legality of the wall Israel had been constructing in the West Bank.

    The Court found that, based on ARticle 2 of the United Nations Charter and numerous U.N resolutions barring the acquisition of territory by force, Israel had no title to ANY of the territories it captured during the June 1967 war. ( Occupied Palestinian Territory).

    From this it follows that EAST Jerusalem,which Israel also captured during the June 1967 war, IS NOT, as Israel proclaims, its eternal and undivided capital and integral part of Israel but INSTEAD, East Jerusalem IS Occupied Palestinian Territory, the Court RULED, recallng that U.N. Security Council and General Assembly resolutions had declared Israel’s annexation of East Jerusalem illegal and null and void.

    Finally , the Court cited U.N. Security Council resolutions that , based on Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, Israeli settlements have NO legal validity and constitute a FRAGANT VIOLATION of International Law, from which the Court itself concluded that Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories ( including East Jerusalem) have been established in breach of International Law.

    Enough said!

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    R.M “This is for you Maria the feminist sharia law in its glory ….’

    Again, the term ‘Sharia Law’ is not correct and made up by the West.
    It is either ‘Islamic Law’ or ‘Islamic Sharia’ as I have ponted out earlier.

  • Nora

    “Why would anybody expect peace in the Middle East be possible when people cannot even recognize the issues, refuse to educated themselves and conduct themselves as adults right here online?”

    Maria from Santa Barbara, you don’t sound like an adult yourself.

    You spend all your days here posting bile and hatred in the name of “human rights.”

    Go take care of your children and leave politics to sane people.

  • Nora

    “And to imply that women are only abused under Islamic Law is simplistic as well. Women are abused in all cultures, across the globe.” Maria from Santa Barbara

    YOu sound like an Islamist apologist, “maria” if that is your name and not Leila or some such name.

    Women are oppressed under Sharia law. They are not as opporessed in the West as they are in Saudi Arabia and Iran. Two disgusting countires that kill women for not observing the rules of Islam.

    Go peddle you anti women crap elsewhere.

  • Nora

    “Again, the term ‘Sharia Law’ is not correct and made up by the West.
    It is either ‘Islamic Law’ or ‘Islamic Sharia’ as I have ponted out earlier.”
    Maria from Santa Barbara,

    who cares, Leila /Maria?

    It’s an oppressive system no matter what you call it.

  • R.M.

    ya maria but do WE have HONOR KILLINGS ?

  • R.M.

    MARIA good question ….how can there be peace when millions are suffering all over the world and people like you concentrate on a tiny nation surrounded by 22 Arab countries who swear its destruction .Try going to a rally in those arab states lets see if you don’t disapear. Israel is transparent …No my dear peace cannot be constructed on top of a lie ….it will never work .You don’t want to see the reality of the problem because you are politically correct …. answer the question why the one million jews kicked out from arab countries and made refugees but never have been recognized by the United Nation?

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    R.M”how can there be peace when millions are suffering all over the world and people like you concentrate on a tiny nation surrounded by 22 Arab countries who swear its destruction ”

    Amnesty International brings attention to the ‘millions suffering” INCLUDING the 2 million on the 25mile strip called Gaza and INCLUDING the Israeli’s imprisoned for critizing their govt.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    And for the record since you do not appear to understand the dynamics, the tiny little country surrounded by the 22 Arab nations is under protection of the biggest military apparatus in the world called the United States Military!

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    By the way, I got earplugs and blinders for sale. It appears there is a great economic need here…..

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    True Torah Jews Against Zionism – Our Mission
    The relatively new concept of Zionism began only about one hundred years ago and since that time Torah-true Jewry has steadfastly opposed the Zionist ideology. This struggle is rooted in two convictions:

    Zionism, by advocating a political and military end to the Jewish exile, denies the very essence of our Diaspora existence. We are in exile by Divine Decree and may emerge from exile solely via Divine Redemption. All human efforts to alter a metaphysical reality are doomed to end in failure and bloodshed. History has clearly borne out this teaching.
    Zionism has not only denied our fundamental belief in Heavenly Redemption it has also created a pseudo-Judaism which views the essence of our identity to be a secular nationalism. Accordingly, Zionism and the Israeli state have consistently endeavored, via persuasion and coercion, to replace a Divine and Torah centered understanding of our people hood with an armed materialism.
    True Torah Jews is dedicated to informing the world and in particular the American public and politicians that all Jews do not support the ideology of the Zionist state called “Israel” which is diametrically opposite to the teachings of traditional Judaism.

    We are concerned that the widespread misconception that all Jews support the zionist state and its actions endangers Jews worldwide.

    We are NOT politically motivated. We are motivated by our concern for the peace and safety of all people throughout the world including those living in the Zionist state. We support and pray for peace for the people of the Zionist state but have no interest in and do not support the Zionist government.

    We seek to disassociate Jews and traditional Judaism from the Zionist Ideology by:

    Providing historical and supporting documentation that Zionism is totally contrary to the teachings of traditional Judaism through the words of our Rabbis, Sages, and Holy Scriptures which oppose the creation of a state called Israel.
    Providing historical documentation on the ideaology and creation of Zionism, the supporters of Zionism and the negative impact of their actions on the Jewish people in the past hundred years, including their involvement in the holocaust up to the present day.
    Publicizing the efforts of traditional Jews to demonstrate that all Jews do not support Zionism, which is being ignored by the mainstream media.
    Convince the news media, politicians and the public to cease referring to the state of Israel as the “Jewish State” but to call it what it is: the “Zionist State”.
    It is our firm belief that when the state of “Israel” is recognized for what it is, a Zionist state which is not guided by the teachings of the traditional Jewish faith, Jews worldwide will be able to live in peace.

  • Nora

    “Amnesty International brings attention to the ‘millions suffering” Maria from Santa Barbara

    Leila/Maria is lying again.

    Amnesty International has been obsessed with Israel and had to apologize for making misleading statements about Israel recently.

    They are led by a bunch of antisemites and are not a trustworthy organization any more.

    The millions of people all over the world are not just suffering they are being butchered by your Arab friends in Darfur, in Algeria and in other Muslim countries.

    But you don’t give a damn about that all you care about Hamas which is slaughtering its own Palestinian people.

    “INCLUDING the 2 million on the 25mile strip called Gaza and INCLUDING the Israeli’s imprisoned for critizing their govt.”

    More lies. Gaza shares a border with Egypt as well as Israel.

    The international community imposed a boycott on support for you murderous frienda Hamas which rules Gaza.

    As for population density, the Tel Aviv area in Israel is denser than Gaza so are places like Hong KOng. This desn’t make these places “prisons.”

    You are just repearing the antisemitic poison that Hamas and other Israel haters spout.

  • Nora

    “Amnesty International brings attention to the ‘millions suffering” Maria from Santa Barbara

    Leila/Maria is lying again.

    Amnesty International has been obsessed with Israel and had to apologize for making misleading statements about Israel recently.

    They are led by a bunch of antisemites and are not a trustworthy organization any more.

    The millions of people all over the world are not just suffering they are being butchered by your Arab friends in Darfur, in Algeria and in other Muslim countries.

    But you don’t give a damn about that all you care about Hamas which is slaughtering its own Palestinian people.

    “INCLUDING the 2 million on the 25mile strip called Gaza and INCLUDING the Israeli’s imprisoned for critizing their govt.”

    More lies. Gaza shares a border with Egypt as well as Israel.

    The international community imposed a boycott on support for your murderous friends of Hamas which rules Gaza.

    As for population density, the Tel Aviv area in Israel is denser than Gaza so are places like Hong Kong. This doesn’t make these places “prisons.”

    You are just repeating the antisemitic poison that Hamas and other Israel haters spout.

  • Nora

    “By the way, I got earplugs and blinders for sale. It appears there is a great economic need here…..”
    Maria from Santa Barbara

    I am sure you do since you it waht you wear every day of the week.

    You need to take them off, Jewhater.

  • Nora

    “True Torah Jews Against Zionism – Our Mission
    The relatively new concept of Zionism began only about one hundred years ago and since that time Torah-true Jewry has steadfastly opposed the Zionist ideology. This struggle is rooted in two convictions” Leila/Maria

    You are not a Jew and you don’t know what you are talking about.

    Zionism has been around for two thousand years. It is the yearning of Jews to return to the land of Israel.

    Moderns zionism was the attempt to save the Jews from your Nazi friends who tries to exterminate them.

    These “Torah Jews” so called don’t know Judaism if they did they would know that Jews repeat the prayer next year in Jerusalem. Zionism is as Jewish as Torah.

    Who is paying you to post these lying nonsense?

  • Nora

    The communists made a pact with Hitler and were just as antisemitic. Maria/Lela is repeating anti Jewish Communists propaganda

    read this:

    “While communism officially has no place for antisemitism, interpretations suggesting that Josef Stalin exhibited antisemitism have been put forth by different historians and other sources. British historian Nikolai Tolstoy writes that Stalin, not trusting anybody, felt threatened by a vast Jewish conspiracy.[1]

    [edit] 1930s
    Even though communism theoretically rejects every form of national discrimination, including antisemitism, and many Old Bolsheviks were ethnically Jewish, they sought to uproot Judaism and Zionism and established the Yevsektsiya to achieve this goal.
    Stalin’s letter : “Reply to an Inquiry of the Jewish News Agency in the United States” dated January 12, 1931 indicated his official position of the Soviet Union:
    In answer to your inquiry: National and racial chauvinism is a vestige of the misanthropic customs characteristic of the period of cannibalism. Anti-semitism, as an extreme form of racial chauvinism, is the most dangerous vestige of cannibalism. Anti-semitism is of advantage to the exploiters as a lightning conductor that deflects the blows aimed by the working people at capitalism. Anti-semitism is dangerous for the working people as being a false path that leads them off the right road and lands them in the jungle. Hence Communists, as consistent internationalists, cannot but be irreconcilable, sworn enemies of anti-semitism. In the U.S.S.R. anti-semitism is punishable with the utmost severity of the law as a phenomenon deeply hostile to the Soviet system. Under U.S.S.R. law active anti-semites are liable to the death penalty. [2]
    To offset the growing Jewish national and religious aspirations of Zionism and to successfully categorize Soviet Jews under Stalin’s nationality, an alternative to the Land of Israel was established with the help of Komzet and OZET in 1928. The Jewish Autonomous Oblast with the center in Birobidzhan in the Russian Far East was to become a “Soviet Zion”. Yiddish, rather than “reactionary” Hebrew, would be the national language, and proletarian socialist literature and arts would replace Judaism as the quintessence of culture. Despite a massive domestic and international state propaganda campaign, the Jewish population there never reached 30% (as of 2003 it was only about 1.2%). The experiment ground to a halt in the mid-1930s, during Stalin’s first campaign of purges. Jewish leaders were arrested and executed, and Yiddish schools were shut down.
    Pravda published cartoons portraying Leon Trotsky as a red demonic figure ruining Stalin’s Russia, and eventually Trotsky fled Russia, eventually moving to Mexico. He was eventually murdered with an icepick under suspicious circumstances. Some writers, such as Paul Johnson, point to this as the main turning point in Stalin’s anti-Semitism. In foreign policy, however, the official position of the Soviet Union towards Zionism in the late 1930s changed to a more favourable one. The official Soviet Encyclopedia claimed that Jewish migration to Palestine had become a “progressive factor” because many of the immigrants were left-wing Labor Zionists who could be used against pro-British Arabs.
    At the Yalta Conference in 1945, U.S President Franklin D. Roosevelt asked Stalin, what he thought of Zionism:
    In principle I support Zionism, but there are difficulties with solving the Jewish question. Our experiment in Birobidzhan failed, because the Jews prefer to live in cities.[3]
    By the end of the 1940s the Communist leadership of the former USSR had liquidated almost all Jewish organizations, including Yevsektsiya. Despite the official Soviet opposition to antisemitism, critics of the ensuing USSR characterize it as an antisemitic regime, pointing out the Non-Aggression Pact with Nazi Germany, the relatively high Jewish casualties in the Great Purges, and Soviet hostility toward Jewish religious and cultural institutions–a hostility, however, that was applied with practically equal force against all religious and non-communist cultural institutions, the notable exception being the Christian Orthodox Church during World War II, or the “Great Patriotic War” as it was known there.
    [edit] After World War II

    A caricature from the Soviet magazine Krokodil, January 1953, supposedly exposing the ‘unmasking of the Jewish plotters’
    In 1947, Stalin joined the United States in supporting the creation of Israel, and supported Israel in the 1948 Arab–Israeli War with weaponry supplied via Czechoslovakia and encouraged his supporters to serve in the Israeli armed forces. Despite his recognition of Israel in 1948 and support from Israel’s Mapam party, many campaigns and purges were organized at home that could be interpreted as antisemitic.[3] The subject has been widely covered in Edvard Radzinski’s biography of Stalin. Stalin began this purge with repressing his wartime allies, the Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee. In January 1948, Solomon Mikhoels was killed in a suspicious car accident in Minsk. According to documents unearthed by historian Gennady Kostyrchenko, the organizers of the assassination were L.M. Tsanava and S. Ogoltsov, and the “direct” murderers were Lebedev, Kruglov and Shubnikov. [4] In November 1948, Soviet authorities launched a campaign to liquidate what was left of Jewish culture. The members of the Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee were arrested. They were charged with treason, bourgeois nationalism and planning to set up a Jewish republic in Crimea to serve US interests.
    In a December 1, 1952 Politburo session, Stalin announced: “Every Jewish nationalist is a potential agent of the American intelligence. Jewish nationalists think that their nation was saved by the USA.” [5]
    The night of August 12-13, 1952, in the event known as the Night of the Murdered Poets (Ночь казнённых поэтов), thirteen of the most prominent Yiddish writers of the Soviet Union were executed on the orders of Stalin. Among the victims were Peretz Markish, David Bergelson and Itzik Fefer.
    The antisemitic campaign of 1948-1953 against so-called “rootless cosmopolitans,” destruction of the Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee, the fabrication of the “Doctors’ plot,” the rise of “Zionology” were officially carried out under the banner of “anti-Zionism,” but the use of this term could not obscure the antisemitic content of these campaigns,[original research?] and by the mid-1950s the state persecution of Soviet Jews emerged as a major human rights issue in the West and domestically.
    [edit] 1953
    On January 13, 1953, TASS announced “the unmasking of a terrorist group of doctors-poisoners.” Satirical magazine Krokodil published antisemitic feuilletons and caricatures, Pravda published materials on arrested “spies”‘, almost all of whom were Jews. As Western press accused the Soviet Union of antisemitism, the Central Committee of Communist Party decided to organise a propagandistic trick, a collective letter by the Jewish public, condemning with fervour “the murderers in white overalls” and the agents of Imperialism and Zionism, and to assure there was no antisemitism in the USSR. The letter was signed by well-known scientists and culture figures, who had been forced to do so by the NKVD. [6]
    However, the letter, initially planned to be published in February, 1953, remained unpublished. Instead of the letter, a vehement feuilleton The Simple-minded and the Swindlers was published in Pravda, featuring numerous characters with Jewish names, all of them swindlers, villains, saboteurs, whom the naïve Russian people trust, having lost vigilance. What followed was a new wave of antisemitic hysteria and rumours, that all Jews would be sent to Siberia. Only Stalin’s death the same year relieved the fear.[6]
    Similar purges against Jews were organised in Eastern Bloc countries (see Prague Trials).
    [edit] Radzinsky’s hypothesis
    The reasons for the anti-Semitic campaign remain unclear; some attribute this to Stalin’s alleged paranoia, while Stalin’s biographer Edvard Radzinsky has claimed that Stalin was actually preparing for a new military conflict, and just repeated the 1937 purges to ensure an atmosphere of terror and absolute submissiveness. Radzinsky also viewed the persecution of Jews by Stalin as a means of provoking the US.
    Having been equipped with the atomic bomb (1949), the development of the hydrogen bomb was about to succeed. Stalin then ordered Beria to hasten the build-up of a Moscow rocket defence system. By the beginning of 1953, Stalin was boasting that Moscow may soon be gazing at the West from behind a rocket fence.
    Czech historian Karel Kaplan has reported a summary of a Stalin lecture found in the secret archives of Czechoslovak Communist Party. The lecture was held in 1951, at a conference of Communist parties. Stalin asserted that there was a suitable moment to start an assault against capitalist Europe, and that the Korean War had shown the weakness of the US army. Thus, the Socialist bloc had a temporary superiority, which demanded mobilisation of all the political and military power, to give a decisive blow against capitalism and to establish Socialism all over the continent.[6]”
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stalin's_antisemitism

  • Nora

    “The Nazi-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact
    By Jennifer Rosenberg, About.com
    See More About:nazi-soviet non-aggression pactworld war iiadolf hitlerjoseph stalin
    A map that shows the territories agreed upon in the Nazi-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact of 1939.

    Map copyright About.com and Jennifer Rosenberg.In 1939, Adolf Hitler was preparing for war. Though he was hoping to acquire Poland without force (as he had annexed Austria the year before), Hitler was planning against the possibility of a two front war. Since fighting a two front war in World War I had split Germany’s forces, it had weakened and undermined their offensive; thus, played a large role in Germany losing the First World War. Hitler was determined not to repeat the same mistakes. So, he planned ahead and made a pact with the Soviets – the Nazi-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact.

    The Two Sides Meet

    On August 14, 1939, German Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop contacted the Soviets to arrange a deal. Ribbentrop met with the Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav Molotov in Moscow and together they arranged two pacts – the economic agreement and the Nazi-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact.

    To the chancellor of the German Reich, Herr A. Hitler.
    I thank you for your letter. I hope that the German-Soviet Nonaggression Pact will mark a decisive turn for the better in the political relations between our two countries. .

    J. Stalin*

    The Economic Agreement

    The first pact was an economic agreement, which Ribbentrop and Molotov signed on August 19, 1939.

    The economic agreement committed the Soviet Union to provide food products as well as raw materials to Germany in exchange for furnished products such as machinery from Germany.

    During the first years of the war, this economic agreement helped Germany bypass the British blockade.

    The Nazi-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact

    On August 23, 1939, four days after the economic agreement was signed and a little over a week before the beginning of World War II, Ribbentrop and Molotov signed the Nazi-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact. (The pact is also referred to as the German-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact and the Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact.) Publicly, this agreement stated that the two countries – Germany and the Soviet Union – would not attack each other. If there were ever a problem between the two countries, it was to be handled amicably. The pact was supposed to last for ten years; it lasted for less than two.

    What was meant by the terms of the pact was that if Germany attacked Poland, then the Soviet Union would not come to its aid. Thus, if Germany went to war against the West (especially France and Great Britain) over Poland, the Soviets were guaranteeing that they would not enter the war; thus not open a second front for Germany.

    In addition to this agreement, Ribbentrop and Molotov added a secret protocol onto the pact – a secret addendum whose existence was denied by the Soviets until 1989.

    The Secret Protocol

    The secret protocol held an agreement between the Nazis and Soviets that greatly affected Eastern Europe. For the Soviets for agreeing to not join the possible future war, Germany was giving the Soviets the Baltic States (Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania). Poland was also to be divided between the two – along the Narew, Vistula, and San rivers.

    The new territories gave the Soviet Union the buffer (in land) that it wanted to feel safe from an invasion from the West. It would need that buffer in 1941.

    Impacts of the Pact

    When the Nazis attacked Poland in the morning on September 1, 1939, the Soviets stood by and watched. Two days later, the British declared war on Germany and World War II had begun. On September 17, the Soviets rolled into eastern Poland to occupy their “sphere of influence” designated in the secret protocol.

    Because of the Nazi-Soviet Non-Aggression Pact, the Soviets did not join the fight against Germany, thus Germany was successful it its attempt to safeguard itself from a two-front war.

    The Nazis and the Soviets kept the terms of the pact and the protocol until Germany’s surprise attack and invasion of the Soviet Union on June 22, 1941.

    * Letter to Adolf Hitler from Joseph Stalin as quoted in Alan Bullock, Hitler and Stalin: Parallel Lives (New York: Vintage Books, 1993) 611. “

    see also

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Molotov-Ribbentrop_Pact

  • Sabato

    My goodness,

    Maria who is not a Jew (doesn’t believe in G-d) and knows nothing about Judaism quotes from some marginal groups called “torah jews.”

    All believing Jews are Torah Jews, there is no other kind of Jew. And most Jews (99 percent) even the ultra Orthodox Jews support Israel.

    Maria is an Arab propagandist. I doubt her name is Maria as the name was chosen to sound like a Catholic name.

    Maria is a far leftist Jew hater.

  • R.M.

    Israelis criticizes their government all the time …that’s called democracy ….let’s see that in the Arab/Muslim countries show that kind of freedom of speech my dear ……Here is your glorious hamas freedom of speech :
    http://www.repubblica.it/2006/05/gallerie/esteri/palestinese-esecuzione/2.html
    You are deluding yourself if you think otherwise …The Palestinian are well funded …..ask yourself where the money is going ?Ask yourself why Arafat’s was on Forbes richest man and his wife suha is living like a queen in Paris ? Why do the Palestinian leaders have enormous beautiful mansions ,you armchair leftist living in glorious santa barbara would die for ? There are only about 14 million Jews in the world (it would be double if they had not been exterminated )Israel has a right to defend itself peopple like you, want all the Jews to be exterminated ….. They did not defend themselves during world war II , no they peacefully went into the ovens ……and no one cared …….well its not going to happen again ……what is it with you people ? jealousy ?

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Stalin killed 10 million of his own…and sure he was no better than Hitler but Miss Nora you diverting from the subject as usual because you are blinded with emotions which are misdirected.
    Human rights are human rights for the human race. We are human before we are belonging to any group. Hamas violates human rights. Avi Shlaim is loud and clear but your eyes are filled with tears and you are not reading what is actually written.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Ok more dissent from WITHIN Israel…

    Inside Story: Jonathan Ben-artzi , Israelian Pacifist
    His uncle is the hawkish former prime minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu. But Jonathan Ben-Artzi is a conscientious objector who has already spent months in prison for refusing conscription – and today faces a full court martial. He tells Chris McGreal why he will not fight.
    Jonathan “Yoni” Ben-Artzi finally came to understand his objection as he wandered the acres of white crosses spawned by a war far from the one he is being ordered to fight. Defiant, if boyish and vulnerable, the 20-year-old physics student says that from the time he was old enough to understand about the army – which is pretty young in Israel – he has known he would never wear its uniform. But he did not really know why until he went to Verdun, where more than 700,000 men were sacrificed to futility in the first world war. “I always knew I wouldn’t go into the army but I came to realise why when I was 14. We visited France and some of the battlefields and I saw the rows and rows of graves,” he says. “Then I realised the stupidity of it. So many lives sacrificed and they didn’t really know what they were fighting for. They were never told the truth.”

    For his views, Ben-Artzi has now spent more time in prison than any other Israeli conscientious objector. He is also the best known of the refuseniks because he is the nephew of Benjamin Netanyahu, the country’s belligerent former prime minister. Theirs is a family of Israeli war heroes. Ben-Artzi’s grandfathers were renowned fighters for Israel’s independence, and he shares a first name with a Netanyahu he never knew, who was killed during the daring raid on Entebbe in 1976 to rescue Jewish hostages from German and Palestinian hijackers in Idi Amin’s Uganda.

    As one of 10 young men locked up for refusing to do three years’ conscription, Ben-Artzi has found courage of a different sort. He has spent more than 200 days in prison, punctuated by monthly appearances before a military court – that is longer than any soldier has been jailed in recent times for the “illegal killing” of an innocent Palestinian. Now the Israeli army is upping the stakes with a virtually unprecedented attempt to lock Ben-Artzi away for years when he faces court martial today. But it could yet backfire and force the military to recognise what it has so far refused to acknowledge; that there is such a thing as a Jewish pacifist.

    Ben-Artzi and his fellow objectors stand apart from the several hundred older refuseniks who served their conscription fighting to the gates of Beirut or confronting Palestinians during the first intifada. Today, they refuse to do their call-up because they oppose the continued occupation of Palestinian land or the tactics of an army imposing its own brand of terror and collective punishment on the subjugated.

    Ben-Artzi is different. His objection strikes at the heart of what Israel has become, and it clearly unnerves the army. “In Israel, the army is a kind of god and I was expected to worship it from as young as I can remember,” he says. “There were military activities in school. High school students go to army “fire shows”, to convince them to join. They are making a bid for these children, to recruit them to the paratroopers or engineering corps or whichever. They are guided down a mental corridor to the military. There’s a lot of social pressure from the principal, teachers, friends.”

    The military has mythological status among many Israelis. Almost every man is identified by his army unit as much as his career. But while other schoolchildren chose essays on the heroics of Moshe Dayan, Ben-Artzi wrote about pacifism. He refused to take part in a judo class because it required the use of force, and he made no secret of his abhorrence of the militarisation of Israeli society.

    “When I was 14, we had a trip to the Sea of Galilee through the occupied territories. I told the teacher I wouldn’t go because it’s not OK to have kids on a trip going through villages where [Palestinians] are trapped in their homes under curfew. I always had arguments in school. It just grew until my last year when I was 17 or 18 when the first orders came to be interviewed by officers. I came to everything they told me to come to and said I wouldn’t serve.”

    Yet the army insists that Ben-Artzi is not a pacifist. Israeli law obliges every young man, except ultra-orthodox Jews, to serve three years’ conscription. Seven months ago, Ben-Artzi stood before Colonel Deborah Chassid at the army induction centre and told her he had no intention of signing up. He was not alone. A few days later, another teenager came before Chassid and made much the same arguments.

    “I told her I object completely to killing,” says 19-year-old Uri Ya’akovi. “I can’t imagine myself being part of killing, even if it’s indirect. I told them this but they don’t listen. They just try to scare you. They tell you you will be raped in jail. They say you are a traitor. Other boys said they would also object, but after that only a few still make a stand and go to jail.”

    Chassid sentenced both young men to a month in military prison number four, notorious for its life under canvas and harsh discipline.

    Ben-Artzi exercised his right to see one of the “conscience committees” reluctantly set up by the government after it signed up to international human rights conventions. When he walked into the room he discovered every member of the committee was a serving military officer. “I was asked questions. I answered. Their decision was that I’m not a pacifist. It’s an automatic decision. No one has ever been accepted as a pacifist. Israel is the only country that officially declares there are no pacifists.”

    The committee came to the remarkable conclusion that his persistent resistance to the army was evidence of the qualities of a soldier and therefore he could not be a pacifist. “It’s politics,” Ben-Artzi says. “The only type of conscientious objection they recognise is from the Jewish religion.”

    There are other ways out of conscription. Every year, thousands of young men find a psychologist to declare them mentally unsound. Uri Ya’akovi’s father, Adam Keller, did that more than a decade ago. “I refused to do duty in Lebanon so they made me a dishwasher in a tank regiment. In 1988, at the beginning of the intifada, I went out one night and wrote on the tanks: ‘Soldiers refuse to be occupiers and aggressors. Don’t go to the occupied territories’.”

    Keller scrawled the graffiti on 117 tanks before he was caught on the second night. “I did three months in prison for that,” he says. “When I was in high school, some pupils passed out leaflets on what was happening in the occupied territories. People said it couldn’t be that our soldiers would do such things. Now you read worse things in the mainstream media and people don’t care. We used to say that if only people know about it, it would stop. Now they know about it, and it hasn’t stopped.”

    Eventually, Keller slipped out of the army by getting himself declared mentally unfit. “A psychiatrist asked me what was my motivation. I told him it was the people in history who fought for right that motivated me. Then he said: ‘Can we say you hear the voice of history?’ That’s how I got my discharge – he wrote on my report that I was hearing voices of history.”

    Ten days ago his son, Uri Ya’akovi, finally decided to play ball with the army before a “competence committee”. “They told me they didn’t want to hear about pacifism or conscientious objection,” he says. “I said I didn’t want to be in the army because I don’t like the uniform. It’s half true, you know. I don’t like the uniform, but I made it sound bigger.”

    The military’s official reason for getting rid of Ya’akovi was because his “low motivation and morale made him unfit for the army”, without conceding the pacifism principle.

    Last week, Ben-Artzi was called in for a chat by a brigadier general. “I am not talking to you as a general to a draftee, but as Avi to Yoni, OK?” he said. The general had an offer. If Ben-Artzi agreed to enlist he would be granted “an easy service, without a gun, uniform or military training”. A job would be found for him in a hospital. Ben-Artzi replied that he would do three years’ service, but not in an organisation dedicated to killing. The army changed tack. It declared Ben-Artzi was already conscripted and ordered the first court martial of a conscientious objector in three decades. The maximum sentence is three years – the length of conscription. Although a model prisoner who made no attempt to escape during his first 200 days in prison, Ben-Artzi was handcuffed when he left his new cell. This one had no furniture and food was served without a knife or fork.

    At the initial hearing, the military prosecutor described Ben-Artzi as “no better than any deserter or drug addict,” and said the young prisoner was not a pacifist because “the competent military committee has already reviewed his case” and decided he was not. He added that to let Ben-Artzi go would “undermine discipline in the army”.

    Opinion is divided on whether Ben-Artzi is being singled out because of his uncle. Ya’akovi thinks so. “They think Yoni is the leader of this protest, that we’re all following him because his family is powerful. But it’s not true,” he says.

    Ben-Artzi disagrees, and may be right. His absolute refusal to give an inch to the army has made him a uniquely awkward customer.

    Netanyahu has not involved himself in the case, other than to say that he wishes his nephew would change his mind. Ben-Artzi seems unlikely to do so, and it may yet be that the army is the one forced to change. Today’s court martial opens the way to the supreme court where human rights lawyers believe the young refusenik will finally get to put his case before civilian judges – who are more likely to be persuaded that there is such a thing as a pacifist in Israel.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    And not once have I called the Nora’s, the Anonymous RM or the Sabato’s of the world an ugly name.

    One has to wonder, are they Jewish and are they representing and speaking for an entire group? What about some of the worlds most informed scholars like Avi Shlaim, the nephew of Benjamin Nethanyahy and the Dr Finkelsteins and Noam Chomsky’s….are these Jews Anti-semites? Or is it that this group here does not understand and cannot comprehend that dissent on Israeli policies has nothing to do with Anti-semitism, the Holocaust, Stalin, or the fact that Hamas IS committing crimes against humanity as well?

    It is a sad sad day when the same neo-con rethoric is being soaked up by propaganda in order to accuse everybody that who dares to think for themselves and examine the evidence.
    As a staunch Pro-Israel proponent in the past, mostly due to the fact that being from the Netherlands which makes Anne Franks diary a mandatory reading book in schools, it was shocking to see the overwhelming evidence on the treatment of the Palestinians. European colonialism and Western Imperialim are two huge contributors to the conflicts in the region. It takes a more critical press to bring honesty and accountability to those that violate human rights of Israeli’s AND Palestinians.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Miss NOra “Zionism has been around for two thousand years. It is the yearning of Jews to return to the land of Israel.”

    Zionism is a movement founded by Theodor Herzl in 1896 whose goal is the return of Jews to Eretz Yisrael, or Zion, the Jewish synonym for Jerusalem and the Land of Israel.

    The name of “Zionism” comes from the hill Zion, the hill on which the Temple of Jerusalem was situated.

    Supporters of this movement are called “Zionists

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Zionism Promotes Anti-Semitism
    Theodor Herzl (1860-1904), the founder of modern Zionism, recognized that anti-Semitism would further his cause, the creation of a separate state for Jews. To solve the Jewish Question, he maintained “we must, above all, make it an international political issue.”

    Herzl wrote that Zionism offered the world a welcome “final solution of the Jewish question.” In his “Diaries”, page 19, Herzl stated “Anti-Semites will become our surest friends, anti-Semitic countries our allies.”

    Zionist reliance on Anti-Semitism to further their goals continues to this day. Studies of immigration records reflect increased immigration to the Zionist state during times of increased anti-Semitism. Without a continued inflow of Jewish immigrants to the state of “Israel”, it is estimated that within a decade the Jewish population of the Zionist state will become the minority.

    In order to maintain a Jewish majority in the state of “Israel”, its leaders promote anti-Semitism throughout the world to “encourage” Jews to leave their homelands and seek “refuge”.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    So yes Ms Nora..Stalin ofcourse promoted zionism! Both Hitler AND Stalin did!

    Theodor Herzl (1860-1904), the founder of modern Zionism, recognized that anti-Semitism would further his cause, the creation of a separate state for Jews. To solve the Jewish Question, he maintained “we must, above all, make it an international political issue.”[1]Herzl wrote that Zionism offered the world a welcome “final solution of the Jewish question.”[2]In his “Diaries”, page 19, Herzl stated “Anti-Semites will become our surest friends, anti-Semitic countries our allies.”

    51 Documents:

    Zionist Collaboration
    with the NazisZionism was supported by the German SS and Gestapo.[3] [4] [5] [6] Hitler himself personally supported Zionism.[7] [8] During the 1930’s, in cooperation with the German authorities, Zionist groups organized a network of some 40 camps throughout Germany where prospective settlers were trained for their new lives in Palestine. As late as 1942 Zionists operated at least one of these officially authorized “Kibbutz” training camps[9] over which flew the blue and white banner which would one day be adopted as the national flag of “Israel”.[10]

    The Transfer Agreement (which promoted the emigration of German Jews to Palestine) implemented in 1933 and abandoned at the beginning of WWII is an important example of the cooperation between Hitler’s Germany and international Zionism. [11] Through this agreement, Hitler’s Third Reich did more than any other government during the 1930’s to support Jewish development in Palestine and further the Zionist goals.

    Hitler and the Zionists had a common goal: to create a world Jewish Ghetto as a solution to the Jewish Question.

    The Transfer AgreementThe Zionist so-called “World Jewish Congress” declared war on the country of Germany,[12] [13] knowing that it would affect their Jewish brothers residing in that country who would be left without protection. When others tried to help them escape to other countries, the Zionist movement took actions which caused those countries to lock their doors to Jewish immigration (read more in the books, “Perfidy” and “Min Hametzer”). As a result of the Zionist influence five ships of Jewish refugees from Germany arriving in the United States were turned back to the gas chambers.

    The fundamental aim of the Zionist movement has been not to save Jewish lives but to create a “Jewish state” in Palestine.

    On December 7, 1938, Ben Gurion, the first head of the Zionist ‘state of Israel’ declared “If I knew it was possible to save all the children in Germany by taking them to England, and only half of the children by taking them to Eretz Israel, I would choose the second solution. For we must take into account not only the lives of these children but also the history of the people of Israel.”[14]

    On August 31, 1949, Ben Gurion stated: “Although we have realized our dream of creating a Jewish State, we are only at the beginning. There are still only 900,000 Jews in Israel, whereas the majority of the Jewish people still remains abroad. Our future task is to bring all the Jews to Israel.”

    Of the two and a half million Jews seeking refuge from the Nazis between 1935 and 1943, less than 9% went to settle in Palestine. The vast majority, 75%, went to the Soviet Union. In the mid-70’s, more people emigrated out of ‘Israel’ than came in. The only surges of immigration to the Zionist state have occurred during anti-Semitic threats and persecution in foreign countries.[15]

    It follows that for the Zionist state to achieve its goal of a Jewish world ghetto anti-Semitism must be promoted and encouraged, and as we have seen, by acts of violence if necessary.

    “To attain its practical objectives, Zionism hopes it will be able to collaborate with a government that is fundamentally hostile to the Jews”.[16]

    The use of anti-Semitism as a tool to coerce immigration to the Zionist state continues to the present day:

    Prime Minister Sharon has stated that anti-Semitism is on the rise and that the only hope for the safety of Jews is to move to Israel under the protection of the Zionist state. “The best solution to anti-Semitism is immigration to Israel. It is the only place on Earth where Jews can live as Jews,” he said.[17]

    Those who continue to call the so-called “state of Israel” the “Jewish State” are not only promoting Zionism which is contrary to the beliefs of true Judaism, but also endorsing the promotion of worldwide anti-Semitism. In doing so they are endangering the lives of traditional Jews and denying their civil liberties and human rights.

    When the British foreign secretary, Arthur Balfour (sponsor of the 1905 Aliens Act to restrict Jewish immigration to the UK), wanted the British government to commit itself to a Jewish homeland in Palestine, his declaration was delayed – not by anti-Semites but by leading figures in the British Jewish community. They included a Jewish member of the cabinet who called Balfour’s pro-Zionism “anti-Semitic in result”. In contrast, a great statesman like Secretary of State Colin Powell, a supporter of traditional Judaism, has the courage to separate Judaism from Zionism and to acknowledge that speaking out against the actions of the Zionist state is not “anti-Semitism”.

    We call upon our leaders in Washington to disassociate the actions of the Zionist state from traditional Judaism by no longer referring to “Israel” as the “Jewish State” but as “the Zionist State” and to speak out against the Zionist actions which promote anti-Semitism

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    R,M, “Israelis criticizes their government all the time …that’s called democracy ”

    I proved you wrong with the fact that the nephew of former Prime Minister Benjamin Nethanyahu is a concious objector and was sent to prison.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    And here is an article that would have been a great question for Tom Ashbrook to ask Mr Wiesel and the ‘forgiveness’ issue

    Opposition to Gypsies in Holocaust Museum
    View Story On One Page Print This Story Share This Story January 2, 2007 | 8:50 a.m.
    The Nazis’ extermination of Gypsies was nearly as complete, proportionally, as the Nazis’ extermination of European Jews. Yet the commemoration of Gypsy victims of the Holocaust has never come even close to the memorialization of Jewish victims. In her fine book on gypsy life, Bury Me Standing, Isabel Fonseca describes the resistance by the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council to the inclusion of Roma, or gypsy, victims of the Nazis in the museum that the council supervises in Washington.

    It was only after the 1986 resignation of President Elie Wiesel, the survivor and Nobel Peace Prize winner, who had opposed Gypsy representation, that one Gypsy was invited onto the council…
    I tended to judge Wiesel for this opposition, till a few days ago, when I read his book on his father’s murder in a concentration camp, Night (1958). In it, he describes his first night in Auschwitz, after saying goodbye to his mother and one of his sisters for the last time. He and his father are moved to a barracks where Gypsy inmates assisted the German guards, or kapos. His father is suffering from colic and approaches a Gypsy to find out where the bathroom is.
    The gypsy looked him up and down slowly, from head to foot. As if he wanted to convince himself that this man addressing him was really a creature of flesh and bone, a living being with a body and a belly. Then, as if he had suddenly woken up from a heavy doze, he dealt my father such a clout that he fell to the ground, crawling back to his place on all fours… I did not move… Yesterday, I should have sunk my nails into the criminal’s flesh… I thought only: I shall never forgive [him] for that…
    Night’s great theme is the son’s guilt at surviving while his father dies. It includes another scene of cruelty by Gypsies. I wish Wiesel could have gotten past his anger at Gypsies when he held a position of authority; and yet I find that I also excuse him.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    And here is the logic of it all.

    Yes Stalin and Hitler were ofcourse Anti-semites and there for ( logically) very much in favor of Modern Zionism and a state for the Jewish people as the solution to the Jewish question ( do you understand the logic Nora?)

    See, because of the fact that you react with emotion, you are blinded to see the connection and logic behind your own post on Stalin and communism for example.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    R M “You are deluding yourself if you think otherwise …The Palestinian are well funded …..ask yourself where the money is going ?Ask yourself why Arafat’s was on Forbes richest man and his wife suha is living like a queen in Paris ? Why do the Palestinian leaders have enormous beautiful mansions ,you armchair leftist living in glorious santa barbara would die for ?”

    Yes Yasser Arafat ( NObel Peace Price winner who should be stripped of his ‘prize’) took the money that was meant for the Palestinians !!!! That is WHY ( and here is another LOGICAL conclusion) the CORRUPT PLO turned FATAH with the corrupt leader of Mamoud Abbas,,,,,LOST elections from HAMAS which at the time was putting its money into schools and hospitals and communities.

    So AGAIN….a logical explanation on HOW Hamas WON the elections from Fatah ( which was the continuation of a corrupt PLO under Yasser Arafat).

    “Gaza Bombshell” by David Rose who’s article appeared in Vanity Fair will explain the divide and conquer techniqes used by the U.S.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Also Stalin did not just kill Jews, he killed everybody that opposed him……Another fact proving that atrocities happen to ALL peoples and NOT just Jewish people!

  • mike

    Hot off the press

    An Israeli military college has printed damning soldiers’ accounts of the killing of civilians and vandalism during recent operations in Gaza.

    One account tells of a sniper killing a mother and children at close range whom troops had told to leave their home.

    Another speaker at the seminar described what he saw as the “cold blooded murder” of a Palestinian woman.

    The army has defended its conduct during the Gaza offensive but said it would investigate the testimonies.

    The Israeli army has said it will investigate the soldiers’ accounts.

    The testimonies were published by the military academy at Oranim College. Graduates of the academy, who had served in Gaza, were speaking to new recruits at a seminar.

    The climate in general [was that] lives of Palestinians are much, much less important than the lives of our soldiers

    Soldier testimony

    Analysis: Operation Miscast Lead?
    Gaza war crimes probes

    “[The testimonies] conveyed an atmosphere in which one feels entitled to use unrestricted force against Palestinians,” academy director Dany Zamir told public radio.

    Heavy civilian casualties during the three-week operation which ended in the blockaded coastal strip on 18 January provoked an international outcry.

    Correspondents say the testimonies undermine Israel’s claims that troops took care to protect non-combatants and accusations that Hamas militants were responsible for putting civilians into harm’s way.

    ‘Less important’

    The Palestinian woman and two of her children were allegedly shot after they misunderstood instructions about which way to walk having been ordered out of their home by troops.

    “The climate in general… I don’t know how to describe it…. the lives of Palestinians, let’s say, are much, much less important than the lives of our soldiers,” an infantry squad leader is quoted saying.

    FROM THE BBC WORLD SERVICE

    More from BBC World Service

    In another cited case, a commander ordered troops to kill an elderly woman walking on a road, even though she was easily identifiable and clearly not a threat.

    Testimonies, which were given by combat pilots and infantry soldiers, also included allegations of unnecessary destruction of Palestinian property.

    “We would throw everything out of the windows to make room and order. Everything… Refrigerators, plates, furniture. The order was to throw all of the house’s contents outside,” a soldier said.

    One non-commissioned officer related at the seminar that an old woman crossing a main road was shot by soldiers.

    “I don’t know whether she was suspicious, not suspicious, I don’t know her story… I do know that my officer sent people to the roof in order to take her out… It was cold-blooded murder,” he said.

    The transcript of the session for the college’s Yitzhak Rabin pre-military course, which was held last month, appeared in a newsletter published by the academy.

    Israeli human rights groups have criticised the military for failing to properly investigate violations of the laws of war in Gaza despite plenty of evidence of possible war crimes.

    ‘Moral army’

    The soldiers’ testimonies also reportedly told of an unusually high intervention by military and non-military rabbis, who circulated pamphlets describing the war in religious terminology.
    Palestinian civilians paid a heavy price during the three-week Israeli operation

    “All the articles had one clear message,” one soldier said. “We are the people of Israel, we arrived in the country almost by miracle, now we need to fight to uproot the gentiles who interfere with re-conquering the Holy Land.”

    “Many soldiers’ feelings were that this was a war of religion,” he added.

    Defence Minister Ehud Barak told Israel Radio that the findings would be examined seriously.

    “I still say we have the most moral army in the world. Of course there may be exceptions but I have absolutely no doubt this will be inspected on a case-by-case basis,” he said.

    Medical authorities say more than 1,300 Palestinians were killed during Israel’s 22-day operation, including some 440 children, 110 women, and dozens of elderly people.

    The stated aim was to curb rocket and mortar fire by militants from Gaza. Thirteen Israelis, including three civilians were killed.

    but i suppose u say the Israeli military college is anti-semite

  • mike
  • R.M.

    WBUR …My comment is awaiting moderation all day why ? could it be because I wrote criticism on the BBC and asking why they have not published the Balen Report ? WBUR are you censoring me?

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Miss Nora “As for population density, the Tel Aviv area in Israel is denser than Gaza so are places like Hong Kong. This doesn’t make these places “prisons.””

    Israeli Violations of Palestinian Human Rights

    Throughout 1997, the PCHR continued to monitor Israeli violations of Palestinian human rights. Particularly in Gaza, the PCHR documented these violations and reported them internationally and locally. The PCHR intervenes before international bodies in an attempt to gain worldwide support for the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people and to urge the international community to exert pressure on the State of Israel to stop its violations and illegal practices in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. The PCHR also provides legal aid and counseling to hundreds of victims of such practices, including intervention before Israeli courts and concerned bodies.

    The year 1997 witnessed a full record of Israeli human rights violations in the Gaza Strip. Israeli authorities continued to enforce a policy of comprehensive and partial closures of the Occupied Palestinian Territories. As a form of collective punishment, such a policy is prohibited by international law. Also in 1997, the file of Palestinian detainees in Israel remained wide open, while their living conditions deteriorated and they continued to face torture. In addition, Israel continued its campaign of arrests against Palestinian citizens, detaining those living in areas under Palestinian jurisdiction at internal checkpoints and border crossings, such as the Rafah international crossing.

    The provocative activities of Israeli settlers and soldiers also continued during 1997. Attempting to control and confiscate Palestinian land near settlements, the settlers and soldiers often provoked clashes with Palestinian civilians who confronted them and attempted to prevent the confiscation of their lands. During these clashes, many Palestinians were shot dead and many other injured in circumstances that did not threaten the lives of the Israeli soldiers.

    Other Israeli violations continued in 1997, especially in areas still under the security jurisdiction of the Israeli occupation forces (Yellow Areas according to the Interim Agreement). In these areas, Palestinian citizens were subjected to systematic harassment by soldiers and settlers. Often Israeli soldiers closed al-Tufah checkpoint, the only outlet available for Palestinians to enter or leave the Yellow Areas. Even when al-Tufah was not closed, Israeli soldiers at this checkpoint restricted the movement of citizens and subjected them to prolonged checks, sometimes lasting many hours. At the same time, Israeli marine forces continued their provocative practices against Palestinian fishing boats in the tiny strip of sea in which Palestinians are allowed to fish. In many cases, the Israeli forces shot at these boats, detained Palestinian fishermen, and confiscated their boats and equipment.

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Another Jew who is reporting warcrimes by the Israeli govt.

    By Stephanie Nebehay

    GENEVA (Reuters) – A United Nations human rights investigator said on Thursday that Israel’s military assault on densely populated Gaza appeared to constitute a grave war crime.

    Richard Falk, U.N. special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories, said the Geneva Conventions required warring forces to distinguish between military targets and surrounding civilians.

    “If it is not possible to do so, then launching the attacks is inherently unlawful and would seem to constitute a war crime of the greatest magnitude under international law,” Falk said.

    “On the basis of the preliminary evidence available, there is reason to reach this conclusion,” he wrote in an annual 26-page report submitted to the U.N. Human Rights Council.

    Falk gave the same death toll from Israel’s offensive in December and January — 1,434 Palestinians, including 960 civilians — as the Palestinian human rights center.

    Israel, which lost 13 people during the war, disputes the figures and has accused Hamas fighters in Gaza of using civilians as human shields during the conflict — an allegation which Falk said should be investigated.

    He called the Israeli attacks a “massive assault on a densely populated urbanized setting” in which the entire civilian population had been subjected to “an inhumane form of warfare that kills, maims and inflicts mental harm.”

    “As all borders were sealed, civilians could not escape from the orbit of harm,” he said.

    This denial of people’s right to flee the war zone as refugees may also constitute a crime against humanity, he said.

    WAR CRIMES PROBE

    Falk called for an independent experts group to probe possible war crimes committed by both Israeli forces and Hamas. It should gather eyewitness testimony as well as explanations from Israeli and Palestinian military commanders.

    Violations included Israel’s alleged “targeting of schools, mosques and ambulances” during the offensive, which lasted from December 27 to January 18, and its use of weapons including white phosphorus, as well as Hamas’s firing of rockets at civilian targets in southern Israel.

    Falk said that Israel’s blockade of the coastal strip of 1.5 million people violated the Geneva Conventions and this suggested further war crimes and possibly crimes against humanity.

    The aggression was not legally justified and may represent a “crime against peace” — a principle established at the Nuremberg trials of Nazi war criminals, according to Falk, an American law professor who serves as the Human Rights Council’s independent investigator.

    Falk, who is Jewish, suggested the Security Council might set up an ad hoc criminal tribunal to establish accountability for war crimes in Gaza, noting Israel has not signed the Rome statutes establishing the International Criminal Court.

  • R.M.

    WBUR….If you censor me , I can’t have a conversation

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    According to my records…you never had one! Namecalling and making ad hominem attacks are NOT conversation!

  • Toby

    Maria the Arab propagandist and Mike her dernaged Jew hating helper are at it again. They are posting lies like the following one:

    “Zionist Collaboration
    with the NazisZionism was supported by the German SS and Gestapo.[3] [4] [5] [6] Hitler himself personally supported Zionism.[7] [8] During the 1930’s, in cooperation with the German authorities, Zionist groups organized a network of some 40 camps throughout Germany where prospective settlers were trained for their new lives in Palestine. As late as 1942 Zionists operated at least one of these officially authorized “Kibbutz” training camps[9] over which flew the blue and white banner which would one day be adopted as the national flag of “Israel”.[10]”

    Here is what Hitler thought about Zionism:

    Hitler on the Protocols (in German and English)

    ——————————————————————————–

    ——————————————————————————–

    Hitler and the Protocols
    In The Holocaust: The Destruction of European Jewry 1933-1945, Nora Levin states that “Hitler used the Protocols as a manual in his war to exterminate the Jews”:

    Despite conclusive proof that the Protocols were a gross forgery, they had sensational popularity and large sales in the 1920′s and 1930′s. They were translated into every language of Europe and sold widely in Arab lands, the United States, and England. But it was in Germany after World War I that they had their greatest success. There they were used to explain all of the disasters that had befallen the country: the defeat in the war, the hunger, the destructive inflation (19).
    In contrast to Hitler’s rantings (below), Nazi leader Erich von dem Bach-Zelewsky admitted that there really was no “Jewish menace” (jüdische Gefahr) — to use Hitler’s own phrase in Mein Kampf — or conspiracy for world domination:

    I am the only living witness but I must say the truth. Contrary to the opinion of the National Socialists, that the Jews were a highly organized group, the appalling fact was that they had no organization whatsoever. The mass of the Jewish people were taken complete by surprise. They did not know at all what to do; they had no directives or slogans as to how they should act. This is the greatest lie of anti-Semitism because it gives the lie to that old slogan that the Jews are conspiring to dominate the world and that they are so highly organized. In reality, they had no organization of their own at all, not even an information service. If they had had some sort of organization, these people could have been saved by the millions, but instead, they were taken completely by surprise. Never before has a people gone as unsuspectingly to its disaster. Nothing was prepared. Absolutely nothing (20).

    ——————————————————————————–

    Work Cited
    Levin, Nora. The Holocaust: The Destruction of European Jewry 1933-1945 (New York: Schocken Books, 1973).

    ——————————————————————————–

    On the rest of this page, you will find Hitler’s comments in Mein Kampf — in German and then in English translation — about the Protocols. Despite the tragedy of the Holocaust and the irrefutable proof that the Protocols is a forgery, copies of the Protocols are still being printed and disseminated today.

    ——————————————————————————–

    Aus Mein Kampf: Die Protokolle der Weisen von Zion
    Aus 11. Kapitel: Volk und Rasse — Erster Band: Eine Abrechnung

    . . . Wie sehr das ganze Dasein dieses Volkes auf einer fortlaufenden Lüge beruht, wird in unvergleichlicher Art in den von den Juden so unendlich gehaßten Protokollen der Weisen von Zion gezeigt. Sie sollen auf einer Fälschung beruhen stöhnt immer wieder die Frankfurter Zeitung in die Welt hinaus: der best Beweis dafür, daß sie echt sind. Was viele Juden unbewußt tun mögen, ist hier bewußt klargelegt. Darauf aber kommt es an. Es ist ganz gleich, aus wessen Judenkopf diese Enthüllungen stammen, maßgebend aber ist, daß sie mit geradezu grauenerregender Sicherheit das Wesen und die Tätigkeit des Judenvolkes aufdecken und in ihnen inneren Zusammenhägen sowie dan letzten Schlußzielen darlegen. Die beste Kritik an ihnen jedoch bildet die Wirklichkeit. Wer die geschichtliche Entwicklung der letzten hundert Jahre von den Gesichtspunkten dieses Buches aus überprüft, dem wird auch das Geschrei der jüdischen Presse sofort verständlich werden. Denn wenn dieses Buch erst einmal Gemeingut eines Volkes geworden sein wird, darf die jüdische Gefahr auch schon als gebrochen gelten (337).

    ——————————————————————————–

    Work Cited
    Hitler, Adolf. Mein Kampf (München: Zentralverlag der N.S.D.A.P. Franz Eher Nachf., G.M.B.H., 1935).

    ——————————————————————————–

    From Mein Kampf: The Protocols of the Wise Men of Zion
    From Chapter XI: Nation and Race — Volume I: A Reckoning

    . . . To what extent the whole existence of this people is based on a continuous lie is shown incomparably by the Protocols of the Wise Men of Zion, so infinitely hated by the Jews. They are based on a forgery, the Frankfurter Zeitung moans and screams once every week: the best proof that they are authentic. What many Jews may do unconsciously is here consciously exposed. And that is what matters. It is completely indifferent from what Jewish brain these disclosures originate; the important thing is that with positively terrifying certainty they reveal the nature and activity of the Jewish people and expose their inner contexts as well as their ultimate final aims. The best criticism applied to them, however, is reality. Anyone who examines the historical development of the last hundred years from the standpoint of this book will at once understand the screaming of the Jewish press. For once this book has become the common property of a people, the Jewish menace may be considered as broken (307-308).

    ——————————————————————————–

    Hitler, Adolf. Mein Kampf Translated by Ralph Mannheim (Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1943).”

    http://ddickerson.igc.org/hitler-protokollen.html

  • Toby

    Here is more:

    Hitler’s Mufti:

    http://tellthechildrenthetruth.com/gallery/

  • Toby

    http://www.frontpagemag.com/Articles/Printable.aspx?GUID={2EE6A220-579D-49A3-B3FA-658B39F4BE13}

    “Hitler’s Mufti, Not Hitler’s Pope

    By Rabbi David G. Dalin
    FrontPageMagazine.com | 8/9/2005

    Readers of David Horowitz’s excellent book Unholy Alliance are well aware of the peculiar relationship between the political Left and radical Islam. It is a relationship compounded by the Left’s incessant mongering of the myth of “Hitler’s Pope”—a myth that, as a rabbi and historian, I am determined to expose.

    Many readers of the New York Times no doubt believe that Pope Pius XII was “Hitler’s Pope,” because John Cornwell’s bestselling book told them that, and it’s been reaffirmed by Garry Wills, Daniel Goldhagen, and other Left-leaning writers since. It’s been said so often in fact that most well-read liberals know it for a certainty. The only trouble is: it isn’t true.

    Not only does it contradict the words of Holocaust survivors, the founders of Israel, and the contemporary record of the New York Times, but even John Cornwell, the originator of the phrase “Hitler’s Pope,” has recanted it saying that he was wrong to have ascribed evil motives to Pius and now found it “impossible to judge” the wartime pope.

    But there’s something else that has been ignored nearly all together. Precisely at the moment when Pope Pius XII and the Catholic Church in Rome (and throughout Europe) was saving thousands of Jewish lives, Hitler had a cleric broadcasting from Berlin who called for the extermination of the Jews.

    He was Hajj Amin al-Husseini, the viciously anti-Semitic Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, who resided in Berlin as a welcome guest and ally of the Nazis throughout the years of the Holocaust.

    As I point out in my book, The Myth of Hitler’s Pope, the outrageous calumny directed against Pope Pius XII has not only besmirched the reputation of a man who did more than any other religious leader to save Jewish lives, it has deflected attention from the horrible truth of Hajj Amin al-Husseini—who continues to be a revered figure in the Muslim world.

    It is possible to trace modern Islamic anti-Semitism back along a number of different historical and intellectual threads, but, no matter which one you choose, they all seem to pass, at one point or another, through the hands of Hajj Amin al-Husseini—Hitler’s Mufti.

    In late March 1933, al-Husseini contacted the German consul general in Jerusalem and requested German help in eliminating Jewish settlements in Palestine—offering, in exchange, a pan-Islamic jihad in alliance with Germany against Jews around the world. It was not until 1938, in the aftermath of British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain’s infamous capitulation to Hitler at Munich, that Hajj Amin al-Husseini’s overtures to Nazi Germany were officially reciprocated. But by then the influence of Nazi ideology had already grown significantly throughout the Arab Middle East.

    Several of the Arab political parties founded during the 1930s were modeled after the Nazi party, including the Syrian Popular Party and the Young Egypt Society, which were explicitly anti-Semitic in their ideology and programs. The leader of Syria’s Socialist Nationalist Party, Anton Sa’ada, imagined himself an Arab Hitler and placed a swastika on his party’s banner.

    Though he was the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, al-Husseini moved his base of operations (and pro-Nazi propaganda) to Lebanon in 1938, to Iraq in 1939 (where he helped establish the strongly pro-German Rashid Ali al-Gaylani as prime minister), and then to Berlin in 1941.

    Adolf Eichmann’s deputy Dieter Wisliceny testified at the Nuremberg Trials that Hajj Amin al-Husseini “was one of the initiators of the systematic extermination of European Jewry and had been a collaborator and adviser of Eichmann and Himmler in the execution of this plan. He was one of Eichmann’s best friends and had constantly incited him to accelerate the extermination measures.” At Auschwitz, al-Husseini reportedly “admonished the guards running the gas chambers to work more diligently.”

    After the defeat of the Axis powers, Hajj Amin al-Husseini escaped indictment as a war criminal at Nuremberg by fleeing to Egypt, where he received political asylum and where he met the young Yasser Arafat, his distant cousin, who became a devoted protégé—to the point that the PLO recruited former Nazis as terrorist instructors. Up until the time of his death, Arafat continued to pay homage to the Grand Mufti as his hero and mentor.

    This unholy legacy continues. Hajj Amin al-Husseini has inspired two generations of radical Islamic leaders to carry on Hitler’s war against the Jews, which is why today, as was true 60 years ago, it is not the Catholic Church that is the great threat to the survival of the Jewish people; it is Islamofascism.

    ——————————————————————————–
    Rabbi David G. Dalin is a professor of history and political science at Ave Maria University and is the author of the newly released book The Myth of Hitler’s Pope. “

  • Toby

    http://israelmatzav.blogspot.com/2009/03/idf-being-smeared-over-cast-lead.html

    Israel Matzav

    Thursday, March 19, 2009

    “IDF being smeared over Cast Lead shootings?”

    “Thursday morning, there was a disturbing interview on Israel Radio with the head of the pre-military academy in Tivon and the head of an organization called ‘Breaking the Silence.’ The academy head described a post-mortem that he conducted with his former students after Operation Cast Lead in which the students claimed that there were cases of indiscriminate shooting of ‘Palestinian civilians’ in Gaza during the operation.

    Some of the alleged testimonies have already been written up in two articles in Haaretz here and here. This is from the first article (picked up by Memeorandum here):
    During Operation Cast Lead, Israeli forces killed Palestinian civilians under permissive rules of engagement and intentionally destroyed their property, say soldiers who fought in the offensive.

    The soldiers are graduates of the Yitzhak Rabin pre-military preparatory course at Oranim Academic College in Tivon. Some of their statements made on Feb. 13 will appear Thursday and Friday in Haaretz. Dozens of graduates of the course who took part in the discussion fought in the Gaza operation.

    The speakers included combat pilots and infantry soldiers. Their testimony runs counter to the Israel Defense Forces’ claims that Israeli troops observed a high level of moral behavior during the operation. The session’s transcript was published this week in the newsletter for the course’s graduates.

    The testimonies include a description by an infantry squad leader of an incident where an IDF sharpshooter mistakenly shot a Palestinian mother and her two children. “There was a house with a family inside …. We put them in a room. Later we left the house and another platoon entered it, and a few days after that there was an order to release the family. They had set up positions upstairs. There was a sniper position on the roof,” the soldier said.

    “The platoon commander let the family go and told them to go to the right. One mother and her two children didn’t understand and went to the left, but they forgot to tell the sharpshooter on the roof they had let them go and it was okay, and he should hold his fire and he … he did what he was supposed to, like he was following his orders.”
    It gets worse from there.

    In the second article, the Haaretz reporter grants the soldiers telling the stories 100% reliability.
    It seems that what soldiers have to say is actually the way things happened in the field, most of the time. And as usual, reality is completely different from the gentler version provided by the military commanders to the public and media during the operation and after.

    The soldiers are not lying, for the simple reason that they have no reason to. If you read the transcript that will appear in Haaretz Friday, you will not find any judgment or boasting. This is what the soldiers, from their point of view, saw in Gaza. There is a continuity of testimony from different sectors that reflects a disturbing and depressing picture.
    Oh really? Let’s go back to the first article for a minute:
    “I don’t think he felt too bad about it, because after all, as far as he was concerned, he did his job according to the orders he was given. And the atmosphere in general, from what I understood from most of my men who I talked to … I don’t know how to describe it …. The lives of Palestinians, let’s say, is something very, very less important than the lives of our soldiers. So as far as they are concerned they can justify it that way,” he said.
    Not judgmental at all, eh?

    But it gets worse. Jameel in the Muqhata reports the following:
    Channel 2 TV Army correspondent Roni Daniel stated at 6:30 PM this evening, that he personally tracked down one of the soldiers interviewed for the Haaretz article. Apparently the soldier’s testimony to Haaretz wasn’t based on anything he personally saw or witnessed, rather based on rumors and hearsay he heard (and the soldier wasn’t even in Gaza!)
    Where have we seen this before? Here’s a hint: ‘Breaking the Silence.’

    Of course, this story is now all over the world’s media as uncontested fact (Jameel has a longer list). But when has that ever bothered Haaretz before? (For the record, I waited until after I heard the simulcast of Channel 1′s news magazine on the radio before writing this post, and there was no mention of Daniel’s finding in their report on this issue).

    The IDF will investigate these stories and will likely find in some instances that ‘Palestinians’ were accidentally shot just like – as the head of another pre-military academy points out – there were some IDF troops accidentally shot. Those things happen in war. When they find widespread verified instances in which IDF troops shoot unarmed ‘Palestinian’ civilians (real civilians – not just people dressed in civilian clothes as the terrorists are wont to do), call me. Until then, the IDF is the most moral army in the World. Period.

    By the way, the photo at the top is of IDF soldiers rescuing a smuggler from a tunnel”

  • Toby

    Finally neither Maria nor Mike are drivne by anti Jewish hate rather than facts.

  • R.M.

    WBUR how long does it take to look at a comment? are you afraid of the truth? and protecting the BBC from its anti-semitism? The truth will eventually come out in the end so you might as well be the ones to do it …..

    http://www.bbcwatch.co.uk/reports.html and

    http://www.honestreporting.com/

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Historical Progression of Zionism
    18th century: The German Jewish philosopher Moses Mendelssohn initiates a Jewish secularism, which focused on Jewish national identity.

    1862: The German Jew Moses Hess publishes the book Rome and Jerusalem where he called for a return of Jews to Palestine. He also said that Jews would never succeed by assimilating into European societies.

    1881: Pogroms of Russia result in heavy emigration to USA. Some few Jews even emigrates to Palestine, as they are motivated by religious ideas of Palestine as Jewish homeland.

    1893: Nathan Birnbaum introduces the term ‘Zionism’.

    1896: The Austrian Jew Theodor Herzl publishes the book The Jewish State, where he declares that the cure for anti-semitism was the establishment of a Jewish state. As he saw it, the best place to establish this state was in Palestine, but this geography was no precondition.

    1897: The 1st Zionist Congress is held in Basel in Switzerland. 200 delegates participates. The Basel Program is formulated, which calls for the creation of a Jewish homeland in Palestine, where Jews could live safely under public law. The World Zionist organization is also established, and establishes its head quarters in Vienna, Austria.

    1903: Britain offers an area of 15,500 km² in Uganda in Africa, an area of virgin land to the Jews of the world, where a Jewish homeland could be established.

    1905: 7th Zionist Congress refuses Britain’s Uganda proposal. Israel Zangwill forms the Jewish Territorial organization, which sought to find territory for a Jewish state, no matter where this would be. His organization got only few supporters. — After the Russian revolution is defeated, many young Jews emigrate from Russia.

    1917: The Balfour Declaration, issued by the British foreign secretary, gives official British support to the work on establishing a Jewish homeland in Palestine.

    1922: Britain gives The World Zionist organization the mandate to administer Jewish immigration and settlement in Palestine. This immigration and settlement was funded by American Jews.

    1939: The British ‘White Paper’ gives the Arabs of Palestine de facto control over Jewish immigration.

    1942: A call is issued from Zionist leaders for the establishment of a Jewish state in all of western Palestine, when World War II ends.

    1948 May 14: The State of Israel is founded. The World Zionist organization continues to back Jewish immigration to Israel.

    1970s: The World Zionist organization puts its muscles into helping Jews in the Soviet Union to emigrate to Israel.

    1975 November 10: UN General Assembly passes Resolution 3379, in which Zionism is declared “racist”, with 72 votes to 35 (32 abstentions).

    1991 December 16: UN General Assembly revokes Resolution 3379, with 111 votes to 25 (13 abstentions).

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    “Who spoke in a public address at a political Zionist meeting in Berlin and declared that “Germany… has too many Jews”? Was it Hitler or Goebbels? No, it was Chaim Weizman, later to become the first President of the State of Israel. This address was published in 1920, and, thus, four years before Hitler had even written Mein Kampf.”

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    “Who spoke in a public address at a political Zionist meeting in Berlin and declared that “Germany… has too many Jews”? Was it Hitler or Goebbels? No, it was Chaim Weizman, later to become the first President of the State of Israel. This address was published in 1920, and, thus, four years before Hitler had even written Mein Kampf.”

    Toby is confusing concepts.
    YES Hitler was out to exterminate the Jewish people!
    But you refuse to see how this desire played into the hands of those that were desperate to create a state of their own at the expense of the Palestinian people.
    Lets REMIND you that the biggest atrocity to Jewish people was committed IN EUROPE and NOT by Palestinians!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    I am not done posting on this BUT there is ONE major MISCONCEPTION about Humanity!

    The notion that somehow good only belongs to one ‘group’ ( Religion, Nationality,Race etc) and evil to another is intellectual dishonesty.

    My grandmother who helped save the Jewish couple during WWII by being part of a network of safe-havens during RAZZIA’S ( when the GErmans would go door to door in occupied Holland looking for Jews)tought me ONE LESSON!

    There is NO such thing as one race, nationality or religion that is evil.There are good people among ALL and then there are those who will live at the expense of others, are misguided or have evil intent among ALL!

  • Maria from Santa Barbara

    Also what I have noticed among the Toby’s, Sabato’s, NOra’s and R.M’s is that they see ‘War’ as an ‘Us versus Them”

    There is NO such thing as a GW saying ” If you are not with us you are with the terrorists”

    First Bush’s quote RESEMBLES a dictatorship and NOT a Constitutinal Republic!

    Wars are not fought in ‘black and white’ terms. They cross interests, groups etc.

    Take a close look at the war in Afghanistan. The very Taliban we are now fighting , we helped arm during the Soviet era! Allies change and interests change.

    When people are not capable of comprehending dynamics and concepts but INSTEAD keeps ‘arguing’ while adhering to ad hominem attacks, there is NO debate, NO exchange NO conversation!

  • Maria

    ANTI-SEMITISM BY POLITICAL ZIONISM

    Although Zionists and others dispute it, the undeniable fact is that revolutionary secular and apostate elements in the Jewish community in Europe contributed greatly to hostility towards Jews after World War I. This aroused hatred of Jews in general among many non-Jews. While a prisoner in 1924 in the fortress of Lansberg on the River Lech, Hitler wrote his Mein Kampf. When he became Chancellor of Germany in 1933, he was assisted by Goebbels, Roseberg and Streicher. From them came the declarations, “The Jews of Germany caused the defeat of Germany in the 1914-1918 war; the Jews of Germany were responsible for the terrible conditions in Germany that followed the war; the Jews of Germany are foreigners and they wish to remain foreigners; they have no loyalty to the country of their birth; they are not human; they are filthy dogs; they have no right to intrude into Germany’s affairs; there are too many Jews in Germany.

    As far as Zionism is concerned, the founder of Zionism and apostate, Theodor Herzl, sought to intensify hatred of the Jew in order to enhance the cause of political Zionism. Here are some of his “pearls”:

    “It is essential that the sufferings of Jews. . . become worse. . . this will assist in realization of our plans. . .I have an excellent idea. . . I shall induce anti-semites to liquidate Jewish wealth. . . The anti-semites will assist us thereby in that they will strengthen the persecution and oppression of Jews. The anti-semites shall be our best friends”. (From his Diary, Part I, pp. 16)

    Additional words from the vivid imagination of this dreamer, from p. 68 of Part I of his Diary.

    So anti-Semitism, which is a deeply imbedded force in the subconscious mind of the masses, will not harm the Jews. I actually find it to be advantageous to building the Jewish character, education by the masses that will lead to assimilation. This education can only happen through suffering, and the Jews will adapt.

    Hateful views of Jews as being subhuman did not have to be invented by Nazi theorists such as Hitler, Goebbels, Rosenberg and Streicher. This ideology was simply adapted from statements of political Zionists such as those found in the writings of the Zionist Yehezkel Kaufman in 1933.

    In 1920 there were statements hostile to Jews expressed at Heidelberg University. These statements, arguing that Jews of Germany had caused the turmoil that followed the war; that the Jews of Germany had nothing in common with Germans, and that Germans had the right to prevent the Jews of Germany from intruding into the affairs of their volk were not made by Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf, but by Nahum Goldmann, who went in to become the President of the World Zionist Organization and head of the World Jewish Congress, and, indisputably, the most influential political Zionist in the world, second only to the Prime Minister of the State of Israel.

    In 1921, Germans in Germany were told that:

    “We Jews are aliens… a foreign people in your midst and we… wish to stay that way. A Jew can never be a loyal German; whoever calls the foreign land his Fatherland is a traitor to the Jewish people“.

    Who spoke these vile words? It was Jacob Klatzkin, the second of two political Zionist ideologists in Germany at the time, where the Jews of Germany were enjoying full political and civil rights. It was he who had advocated undermining Jewish communities as the one certain way of acquiring a state. “They had no qualms concerning tearing down the existing Jewish communities.”

    Who spoke in a public address at a political Zionist meeting in Berlin and declared that “Germany… has too many Jews”? Was it Hitler or Goebbels? No, it was Chaim Weizman, later to become the first President of the State of Israel. This address was published in 1920, and, thus, four years before Hitler had even written Mein Kampf.

    How many Zionist Jews know of this vicious treachery uttered by these senior political Zionist leaders, these apostates from the Jewish People? At the Nuremberg Trials of Major War Criminals, Nazi propagandist, Julius Streicher testified: “I did no more than echo what the leading Zionists had been saying”, it is clear that he had told the truth.

    In addition to Hitler, Rosenberg, Goebbels and Streicher, many other Nazi leaders used statements from Zionists to validate their charges against the Jews of Germany. Such are the efforts of Zionist leaders to this very day to maintain a high degree of anti-semitism in order to enable them, in feigned horror, to then point to anti-semitism to support their idolatrous and anti-Jewish cause. In 1963, Moshe Sharett, then Chairman of the Jewish Agency, told the 38th Annual Congress of the Scandinavian Youth Federation that the freedom enjoyed by the majority of Jews imperiled Zionism, and at the 26th World Zionist Congress, the delegates were told that the Jew is endangered by the easing of anti-Semitism in the United States “We are endangered by freedom” he declared.

    As we stated earlier, Zionism thrives on anti-Semitism. Ben Gurion declared, “…not always and not everywhere do I oppose anti-Semitism”. Zionists regularly pull out their handy “anti-Semite” race card against anyone, Jew or non-Jew, who dares to speak out against the wickedness of Zionism.

    During World War II, the Lehi organization, an offshoot of Begin’s Irgun that was headed by Yitzchak Shamir sought an alliance with Nazis! The following is a quote from the writings of the Lehi in their contact with the Nazis:

    “The establishment of the historical Jewish state on a national and totalitarian basis and bound by a treaty with the German Reich would be in the interests of strengthening the future German position of power in the Near East … The NMO in Palestine offers to take an active part in the war on Germany’s side … The cooperation of the Israeli freedom movement would also be in line with one of the recent speeches of the German Reich Chancellor, in which Herr Hitler stressed that any combination and any alliance would be entered into in order to isolate England and defeat it.”

    To those who assume that Zionists have been on the side of freedom and equality, these words seem strange. However, to those who understand the root of Zionism, which is the transformation and eradication of the concept of the traditional Jew and Judaism, these statements are not strange at all. They are to be expected.

    The Zionists agreed with Nazism in general, even prior to the advent of Nazism. They believed that Jews could not, and should not, live in harmony in any other society in the world, and that should be removed from those societies for the benefit of those societies. They believed that the new Jewish existence in its own State would remake the image of Jews as “useless” and “parasites.” These ideas existed long before Adolf Hitler!

    There is a huge amount of literature, for instance , describing how the Zionists made it very difficult to save Jews during and after World War II. As various individuals and organizations were trying to arrange departures of Jews to western countries, the Zionists worked overtime to prevent this from happening. They expressed the opinion that building up the Jewish population of Palestine was more important than enabling Jews to go to third countries, and they insisted to western powers that Jews should not be accepted anywhere other than Palestine. Indeed, Yitzchak Greenbaum, a famous Zionist, proclaimed that “one cow in Palestine was worth more than all the Jews in Poland.” The infamous David Ben-Gurion said in 1938:

    “If I knew it was possible to save all the children in Germany by taking them to England, and only half of the children by taking them to Eretz Israel, I would choose the second solution. For we must take into account not only the lives of these children but also the history of the people of Israel.”

    Read about the brutal Zionist role in the Holocaust.”If I am asked, “Could you give from the UJA moneys to rescue Jews, ‘I say, NO! and I say again NO!”

    Izaak Greenbaum — head of Jewish Agency Rescue Committee
    February 18, 1943
    Addressed to the Zionist Executive Council.

    Chaim Weizmann, the first president of Israel, made this Zionist policy very explicit:
    The hopes of Europe’s six million Jews are centered on emigration. I was asked: “Can you bring six million Jews to Palestine?” I replied, “No.” … From the depths of the tragedy I want to save … young people [for Palestine]. The old ones will pass. They will bear their fate or they will not. They are dust, economic and moral dust in a cruel world … Only the branch of the young shall survive. They have to accept it.

    Chaim Weizmann reporting to the Zionist Congress in 1937 on his testimony before the Peel Commission in London, July 1937. Cited in Yahya, p. 55.

    As late as 1943, while the Jews of Europe were being exterminated in their millions, the U.S. Congress proposed to set up a commission to “study” the problem. Rabbi Stephen Wise, who was the principal American spokesperson for Zionism, came to Washington to testify against the rescue bill because it would divert attention from the colonization of Palestine.

    This is the same Rabbi Wise who, in 1938, in his capacity as leader of the American Jewish Congress, wrote a letter in which he opposed any change in U.S. immigration laws which would enable Jews to find refuge. He stated:

    “It may interest you to know that some weeks ago the representatives of all the leading Jewish organizations met in conference … It was decided that no Jewish organization would, at this time, sponsor a bill which would in any way alter the immigration laws.”

  • R.M.

    1)IS SOMETHING HAPPENING IN SUDAN?

    The BBC efforts not to “offend” Arabs extremists even extend to their reports on ethnic cleansing and genocide. On both the occasions in the last week when I heard BBC World Service Radio refer to the ongoing genocide and ethnic cleansing in Sudan, the BBC took scrupulous care to avoid saying who the perpetrators were (they are Arab militias) and who the victims are (hundreds of thousands of Black Sudanese Africans – Moslems, Christians and Animists). The BBC didn’t make any mention whatever of the long history of mass slavery in Sudan, carried out by Arabs with non-Arabs as their victims; nor of the scorched earth policies, and systematic rape being carried out there by Arabs.

    Darfur: all but ignored
    Yet in one of these very same news bulletins, the BBC mentioned that “settlers” in Gaza were “Jewish” and the land they were settling is “Palestinian”. I don’t think I have ever heard the BBC refer to settlers in Gaza without mentioning their ethnicity or religion – which is, of course, relevant to the story (though many would dispute the historical and legal accuracy of referring to the territory as Palestinian). But the BBC doesn’t appear to think ethnicity is relevant when it comes to real killing or ethnic based cleansing.

    That is apart from situations elsewhere, in which non-Arabs are perpetrators. In one of the very same bulletins in which the BBC failed to mention the ethnic make up of perpetrator and victim in Sudan, it made sure to let us know that “Bosnian Serbs have admitted for the first time their role in the massacre of Bosnian Moslems a decade ago.”

    In another report last week, a BBC correspondent casually referred to “a fanatical rebel group” in Uganda. This contrasts with the term “Palestinian resistance group” that BBC reporters often use to describe Hamas, a group the BBC clearly doesn’t find fanatical at all.

  • R.M.

    2)SO HAMAS ARE NOT GUILTY?

    But then Hamas (along with Yasser Arafat, one of the most vicious murderers of Jews since Hitler) appear to enjoy a certain degree of sympathy at the BBC, which throughout the past four years of Israeli-Palestinian violence has constantly tried to obscure the true nature of the group by using misleading language.

    There are innumerable examples of this; they occur almost daily.

    “Over the years, Hamas has been blamed for scores of suicide attacks on Israel,” says the BBC, thereby trying to suggest to listeners and viewers that Hamas has perhaps been wrongly accused of such attacks (even though Hamas itself has proudly and repeatedly claimed responsibility for them in mass celebratory rallies in Gaza, Jenin and elsewhere.)

    Two Palestinian gunmen opened fire indiscriminately in the heart of the northern Israeli town of Afula, killing two young Israeli civilians and wounding over 50 others. They themselves were then shot dead by Israeli policemen. The headline on the BBC website read: “Four Die in Israel Shooting Rampage,” suggesting that four innocent people had died, possibly at the hands of the Israelis.

    Again, when suicide bombers killed 26 Israeli civilians in attacks on Jerusalem and Haifa, the word “terror” was used by the BBC only when describing Israel’s retaliatory (and largely non-lethal) attacks on Palestinian military targets. (By contrast, the BBC didn’t hesitate to use the word “terrorism” last week, when one of its own correspondents, Frank Gardner, was shot and badly wounded by an al-Qaeda gunman in Saudi Arabia.)

    Some of the foreign BBC staff are quite open about their sympathies for Hamas. The senior BBC Arabic Service correspondent in the Gaza Strip, Fayad Abu Shamala, told a Hamas rally on May 6, 2001 (attended by the then Hamas leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin) that journalists and media organizations in Gaza, including the BBC, are “waging the campaign [of resistance/terror against Israel] shoulder-to-shoulder together with the Palestinian people.”

    The best the BBC could do in response to requests from Israel that they distance themselves from these remarks at the time, was to issue a statement saying, “Fayad’s remarks were made in a private capacity. His reports have always matched the best standards of balance required by the BBC.”

    Indeed, today, three years later, the BBC is continuing to use Abu Shamala as much as ever. He was, for example, one of the BBC reporters in Gaza last month, who contributed to the BBC’s highly slanted reporting (on both the BBC English and Arabic services) of Israel’s operation to root out Hamas bomb-makers in Rafah in the southern Gaza.

  • R.M.

    3)A MINUTE’S SILENCE FOR SHEIKH YASSIN

    Hamas mastermind Yassin:
    Remembered in the Commons
    Back in London, BBC staff are careful to promote sympathy for Hamas and other Palestinian terror groups in more subtle ways. Dr Jenny Tonge, a Liberal Democrat Member of the British Parliament, declared in January that she would consider becoming a suicide bomber if she were Palestinian (and subsequently led a minute’s silence in March – in the House of Commons no less – for the deceased Hamas leader Sheikh Yassin, who issued orders for dozens of suicide attacks against Israeli civilians). Since then, Dr Tonge’s invitations to appear on BBC have noticeably increased.

    She was sacked by the Liberal Democrat party leader as parliamentary spokesman for children’s issues for these remarks, but this hasn’t bothered the BBC, who now invite her on both radio and TV to discuss the Middle East.

    In one case, in February, BBC Radio 4’s Flagship morning news program “Today” actually sent her off to “Palestine” (at the BBC’s expense), after which they broadcast her “diary,” in which she further defamed Israel and reiterated her sympathy for suicide bombing. She has also repeated her support for suicide bombers on air on the BBC on other occasions.

    Similarly, there is the case of Oxford university literature lecturer Tom Paulin – who among other things has compared Jewish settlers to Nazis, has said they should be “shot dead,” compared the Israeli army to Hitler’s SS, and said he could “understand how suicide bombers feel.” He continues to be invited as a regular guest commentator by the BBC; indeed, he is one of the two or three most frequent contributors to their most widely screened program on the arts.

  • R.M.

    4)DON’T MENTION LIMB AMPTUTATION

    Those who dare criticize Arab extremism are dealt with somewhat differently by the BBC.

    For example, Robert Kilroy-Silk – who does not appear on BBC news but hosted a daytime chat show – was immediately taken off air after he had the temerity to write in a non-BBC newspaper article in January that Arabs were “suicide bombers, limb amputators, women repressors.” He swiftly apologized and the newspaper in question acknowledged that he had written “Arab governments” and this was inadvertently changed to “Arabs” as a result of an editing error. But Kilroy-Silk was rapidly sacked by the BBC nevertheless.

    However, Kilroy-Silk’s remarks – as many Arab moderates who welcomed them, such as the Egyptian human rights campaigner Ibrahim Nawar, have pointed out – were not technically inaccurate. Limb amputation and repression of women are enshrined in Saudi law, and suicide bombing of Israelis and Americans strongly encouraged by some in government circles.

    And they were comments which may have had consequences. Just a few days later, after they were approvingly reported across the Arab world, several Israeli settlers were murdered, including five-year-old Danielle Shefi, slain as she screamed in her bedroom, leaving behind her Mickey Mouse sheets soaked in blood.

    Kilroy-Silk – whose article appeared just a few days before Dr Tonge’s suicide bomb remarks – apologized. He said he “greatly regretted the offence caused” by his remarks. But this wasn’t enough to satisfy the BBC.

  • R.M.

    6)“THE STUFF OF LEGENDS”

    The BBC rarely misses an opportunity to denigrate Israel or its prime minister. One program even staged a mock “war crimes” trial for Ariel Sharon. (The BBC verdict – that Sharon has a case to answer – was never in doubt).

    Yasser Arafat, though, receives a very different treatment. One particularly cosmetic exercise was a 30-minute BBC profile of Arafat which described him as a “hero,” and “an icon,” and spoke of him as having “performer’s flair,” and “charisma and style” and “personal courage” and being “the stuff of legends”. Adjectives applied to him included “clever,” “respectable,” and “triumphant.” He was also inaccurately referred to as “President.” [2]

    This was broadcast on 5 July 2002 – just two weeks after President Bush had called for a change in Palestinian leadership following revelations about Arafat’s links with suicide terror attacks. But then the BBC knew that they would get this kind of approach when they asked the notoriously anti-Israeli journalist, Suzanne Goldenberg (formerly Jerusalem correspondent for the London Guardian, now the Guardian’s Washington correspondent) to make the program.

    A particularly blatant example of bias, perhaps, but not an isolated one. The BBC rarely mention Arafat’s dictatorial rule, his endemic corruption, or the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade – the terror group he set up after launching the current Intifada, a group which, in recent months, has outstripped Hamas in the number of terror attacks perpetrated against Israeli civilians. As for Hamas, Sheikh Yassin was recently described by one of BBC radio’s Gaza correspondents, Zubeida Malik, as “polite, charming and witty, a deeply

  • R.M.

    7)DID SOMEONE SAY DOUBLE STANDARDS?

    Orla Guerin: One of the
    BBC’s most partisan reporters
    The BBC’s double standards are clear to almost everyone except, it seems, to the BBC itself and its sympathizers in the press. A BBC spokeswoman for example, told the Guardian (May 23, 2002) after the BBC was accused by British Jews of being a prime force in inciting renewed anti-Semitism in the UK, that “The BBC’s reporting about the Middle East is scrupulously fair, accurate and balanced.”

    The official BBC line has not changed since then, even after the scathing criticism of the Hutton report. Such are the level of arrogance and the spirit of denial that permeate the BBC newsroom. Indeed, recent denials of political bias have been stronger than ever. Of course, the BBC would be in danger of losing its enormous public funding if they were admitted.

    For a short while after the Hutton report was published in January, the BBC were a little more careful in their attacks on Israel. But recently they have returned to old ways, with at least four anti-Israeli TV documentaries airing in recent weeks. That makes a total of 20 major documentaries the BBC have made on Israel since 2001 (all but one attacking Israel.) That is three times more than the number of documentaries the BBC has made on any other single country, with the exception of Britain.

    Meanwhile, to my knowledge, the BBC has made no documentaries about human rights abuses in the Arab world; or about Palestinian schoolbooks; or about the Palestinian Authority’s incitement of the Palestinian population; or about the Palestinian Authority’s funding of terrorism allegedly with the use of European Union aid funds.

    The problem is not that every individual correspondent is biased. Whereas some, such as Orla Guerin, make almost no attempt at balance, others, such as James Reynolds in Jerusalem, do make a genuine effort to be fair. The problem is that the culture that permeates the BBC, a habit of thought that has become engrained throughout the network, allows only one worldview, in which the US and Israel are vilified well beyond any reasoned or justified criticism of anything these states have actually done.

    Hiring practices reinforce this. Recently, Ibrahim Helal, editor in chief of the much-criticized al Jazeera TV network was hired by the BBC World Service Trust. The job the BBC wanted him for? To advise on balance in Middle East coverage, and head “media training projects,” i.e. to train BBC (and perhaps other journalists) into “understanding the Middle East better.”

  • R.M.

    8)OCCUPIED WEST BANK OF THE SAHARA?

    BBC Proms night:
    Israelis are Nazis?
    This culture makes it all but impossible for anyone who thinks differently to gain or hold a job at BBC news. Who at the BBC can name the leader of the Polisario Front, fighting for independence against a 25-year Arab occupation of the Western Sahara (a territory bigger than Britain)? Who at the BBC has done a report about all the Arab settlers that the Moroccan government has been bussing into the area to take the land of the indigenous Saharawi people, since Morocco annexed it 25 years ago?

    This article has been limited to BBC news programming. But even elsewhere there is anti-Israel (and some would argue anti-Jewish) sentiment. Each summer, for example, BBC Radio 3, a station largely devoted to classical music, carries a broadcast of “The Proms.” The Proms are a British institution, a jovial annual event at the end of the British summer during which classical favorites and (on the Proms’ final night) tunes such as “Rule Britannia” and “Land of Hope and Glory” are sung by the audience with great fanfare and light-hearted flag-waving at the Royal Albert Hall in London. Yet on the evenings of August 13 and August 20, 2002, the BBC Radio 3 producers decided to fill the time during the interval in their live broadcast (there are no commercials on the BBC) with a recitation of poems that compared Israeli actions to those of the Nazis and asked Holocaust survivors why they had “not learnt their lesson.”

  • R.M.

    9)A GLOBAL PROBLEM

    The BBC’s Middle East problem is not just a British problem but an international one. The BBC pours forth its worldview not just in English but in almost every language of the Middle East: Pashto, Persian, Arabic, Turkish. Needless to say it declines to broadcast in Hebrew, even though it does broadcast in the languages of other small nations: Slovene and Slovak, Macedonian and Albanian, Azeri and Uzbek, Kazakh and Kyrgyz, and so on. (It doesn’t broadcast in Kurdish either; but then the BBC doesn’t concern itself with Kurdish rights or aspirations since they are persecuted by Moslem-majority states like Syria and Iran. We didn’t hear much on the BBC, for example, when dozens of Syrian Kurds were killed and injured by President Assad’s regime two months ago.)

    Throughout the world the BBC enjoys exceptional influence. An article last month in the liberal Israeli daily Ha’aretz, for example, quotes a leading Lithuanian campaigner against anti-Semitism as saying that inflammatory and biased international BBC news coverage against Israel was helping to revive anti-Semitism in Lithuania against those few Jews remaining who were not murdered in the Holocaust.

    The English-language version of the BBC seems to be just the tip of the iceberg. My friend Kamran al-Karadaghi, an urbane, moderate and thoughtful Iraqi, who was for a decade the political editor of the Arabic-language newspaper al-Hayat in London, and who until last week served as head of Radio Free Iraq, tells me that the BBC Arabic language service is not just far worse than the English language BBC. It is “even worse,” he says, than al Jazeera, in the vitriol it pours out against America and Israel.

  • R.M.

    Footnotes –

    [1] For more on these and other quotes, see http://memri.org/bin/articles.cgi?Page=archives&Area=sr&ID=SR01102 and Steven Stalinsky’s NRO article last month (Kingdom Comes to North America. Top Saudi cleric to visit Canada.)
    http://www.nationalreview.com/comment/stalinsky200405130846.asp (after which the Canadian government rescinded al-Sudais’ visa request).

  • R.M.

    Footnotes –
    [2] For many other examples contrasting BBC coverage of Sharon and Arafat, see the well-compiled reports by London lawyer Trevor Asserson at http://www.bbcwatch.com

  • Mike

    Tell me R.M. does ethier bbcwatch and honesty reporting report anything against the state of Israel? if not than it is no creditable than a blogger site. As BBC reports both about israel and Gazans which can not be denied, also bbc did not play a humanitarian ad for gazans cause they did not want to seem to favor one-side but here in the u.s. on msnbc, cnn, foxes we have seen many aid ads for Israel. U discredit sources coming from israel against the methods it has been using but promote 2 sources that only represent the state of Israel interest. If u wish to use a site as your point than find one that is independent from both sides. if not than you got nothing.

    compare to what u noted about bbc, from a source who is only pro-israel. world wide bbc is one of the most credible sources in the world.

  • Mike

    Hi WBUR this is a good point i found along with what happen on this thread.

    ‘Anti-Semitism’ As
    A Political Weapon
    By Lasse Wilhelmson
    lasse.wilhelmson@bostream.nu
    6-25-5

    Criticising Israel´s mistakes is acceptable. But questioning whether Israel is a Jewish state with a racist apartheid system that renders non-Jews second rate citizens – that is not acceptable. It makes little difference whether the criticism is based on facts. Few people who cannot claim Jewish descent would dare to criticize publicly. They are afraid of being accused of “anti-semitism”.

    There is much talk of disarming countries with nuclear weapons. Not the US and its allies, but the so-called ‘rogue states’, especially Iran, which doesn´t yet have any weapons. Israel is hardly ever mentioned as a nuclear power although it has been for a long time. In spite of its advanced plans to bomb Iran, Israel is not seen as a threat to the surrounding world. The media regularly criticizes severely various religions, especially Islam, but never Judaism. Catholic pressure through lobbying, or the Pope´s speeches on political issues are discussed and criticized. The fight in South Africa against the Boers involved a whole world. Not because they were a “race” with undesirable characteristics, but because they were the social group who in their own interests formed and administrated a racist apartheid system. The same sort of criticism was aimed at the followers of Cecil Rhodes in Rhodesia.

    All types of social, ethnic and religious groups defend their own special interests. It is considered quite legitimate for their spokesmen to do their best to promote these interests; just as it is quite legitimate to criticize the same. But the moment Jewish spokesmen and their organisations are criticised, the legitimacy vanishes into thin air. The mention of “Jewish power” makes most people´s blood run cold, but it is quite alright to discuss “gypsy power” or rather the lack of it. “Jewishness” has become taboo. This applies particularly to the combination of “Jewish” and of “power” . All kinds of power can be examined and discussed, questioned or rejected – but not the Jewish kind which is generally presented as non-existent.

    There is growing anxiety in the Palestinian movement in Sweden about using “Jewish” as a prefix to the settlements, the state of Israel or the apartheid system, albeit the use is quite correct. The settlements for example are “Jewish settlements” simply because only Jews are allowed to live there. They are not Israeli because non-Jewish citizens are forbidden access to them. Neither are they Zionist as many Zionists are not Jews. It has now got to the stage where a leading spokesmen for the Palestinians in Sweden denies that Jews and Palestinians have disagreements, despite the law giving Jews all over the world the right to return to Israel, thus making them potential enemies of the Palestinians. Having a Jewish mother gives the right to live in the country taken from the Palestinians. One would be hard put to find a more fundamental disagreement. The issue of blood-relationship renders it, moreover, racist.

    A reluctance to discuss Judaism´s significance for Zionism in Israel of today makes it impossible to understand why Israel was not content with fifty per cent, later eighty per cent, of Palestine. Or why a social democratic prime minister ordered his soldiers to break the bones of children throwing stones? And how can one understand why Jews in Jerusalem throw their garbage onto the roads and back yards of their Palestinian neighbours, spit at them, or why masked Jewish settlers during the “cease fire” launched pogroms on unarmed Palestinian farmers, women and children? Or why the Israeli “peace movement” and “left” do not question the Jewish apartheid system? Just and lasting peace can never be achieved without its transformation. Few people think that all this is a result of the Jews being an “evil race”. But if it cannot be explained by any other means, the few risk becoming too many. A racially-based hate of Jews is helped along by the label of “anti-semitism” pasted on nearly all criticism of Israel, not to mention criticism of Judaism.

    Zionism, through its Jewish organisations, is the dominant interpretation of Judaism today. This is a renaissance of national Judaism of the Middle Ages and the judicial system Halakha with its extreme animosity towards non-jews who were seen rather as subhuman. This revival is seen as very beneficial by most Jewish organisations worldwide. They demand of their members positive commitment to the state of Israel. This is the context in which the behaviour mentioned above can be understood. Most Jews in the diaspora are, however, “happily” unaware of this and are being used by their Zionist leaders and rabbis.

    Politics and religion have merged in the state of Israel today. A person speaking out for a secular democracy to replace the Jewish state, is accused of, in fact, wanting to “drive the Jews into the sea”. Most Jews today identify themselves not with Israel but with Israel as a Jewish state. This creates a fundamental contradiction for many Jews: supporting the Jewish apartheid state while promoting democracy in the countries where they actually live. Denying or whitewashing Israel´s politics, becomes a way of keeping one´s identity intact. Violent, groundless attacks with “anti-semitism” as a weapon is the method used against any attempt to lay bare this contradiction. A well known example is how Israel´s former ambassador to Sweden vandalised the art installation Snow White last year.

    The risk of being labelled “anti-semitic” if you are not a Jew or of “self-hatred” if you are, creates self-censorship among those who are critical of Israel´s policies or dislike the successful lobbying carried out by Jewish and Christian Zionists, influencing US foreign policy. The so- called Friends of Israel, most of them spokesmen for Jewish organisations, have taken it upon themselves to be the foremost interpreters of the term “anti-semitism”. Few question this role as they run the risk of being tainted themselves if they do. The term “anti-semitism” is taking on new nuances all the time. Of late the slightest implication, as in “almost anti-semitic” or an “anti-semitic point of in terest” has been enough to invoke self-censorship. The mention of these circumstances is often felt to be “dangerous” as it could lead to the growth of “anti-semitism”. All this in a western world where islamophobia is a considerably greater problem.

    Jews are rightly proud of their success in almost all corners of society. In art and science and, not least, the media and politics. Israeli newspapers tell of the successful “likudification” of the Bush administration and delight in the fact that the Israeli minister for the diaspora is Bush´s new favourite author and pet in the White House. Russian oligarchs with Israeli citizenship take breakfast there. There is a culture of boasting about this among Jews. But should a critic of Israel point to these exact same circumstances, he would immediately be accused of spreading “anti-semite theories of conspiracy” and thus be barred from any further discussion.

    The Jews have for many years had total entrepreneurship of “God´s chosen People” with a “biblical right” to Palestine. Zionism has been politically successful in reducing the Holocaust to Nazi war crimes against Jews. By presenting themselves as the major (the only?) victims in the history of humanity they expect to claim special moral rights. The method is used favourably to justify and cover up the genocide of the Palestinians. “Anti-semitism” is being used to stop criticism of Israel´s way onwards to achieve the Zionist goal of a Jewish state in the whole of Palestine. Before this goal can be realised, “peace” must be reached with the creation of a few Palestinian reservations on ten per cent of what was originally Palestine, walled-in and gradually wasting away. We are almost there now.

  • Mike

    About the Author

    Lasse Wilhelmson was born in 1941 in Sweden. Part of Wilhelmson’s family fled to Sweden from the Czar’s pogroms during the 1880s. Some members of the family immigrated further to America and Palestine. Wilhelmson lived in Israel for several years during the early 1960s. He also published the article “Israel Must Choose the Path of Democracy” the 16th of September 2003 and “More Than Traditional Colonialism and Apartheid” the Feb. 16, 2004 in The Palestine Chronicle. Today he considers himself to be a Swede as well as an atheist, and all his family is assimilated. He does not accept being defined as a “religious Jew” just because his mother was Jewish.

    http://www.marwenmedia.com/articles_images/LWanti-semitism.html

  • Toby

    Tell me Mike does either bbc or any of your antizionist sources say anything positive about Israel?

    Do they say anything critical about the Palestinians?

  • Toby

    Lasse Wilhelmson is a friend of the fiendish antisemite “Shamir” a Sweed of Russain extraction posing as a Jew.

    His views are therefore suspect.

    Do you ever read anything about Israel that isn’t written by some antisemite or self hating Jewish leftist?

  • Toby

    Story of Israel by Martin Gilbert

    http://www.amazon.com/Story-Israel-Martin-Gilbert/dp/184732052X/ref=pd_sim_b_5

    “Sir Martin Gilbert is the official biographer of Sir Winston Churchill and one of the world’s leading experts on Jewish history. He has written numerous books on the subject and been a visiting professor at both Tel Aviv and the Hebrew University.”

    “Gilbert’s impassioned history adds immeasurably to our understanding of the forces that have shaped contemporary Israel. Digging up a wealth of primary source material and quoting liberally from letters, memoirs, eyewitness accounts, interviews, memoranda and diaries of David Ben-Gurion, Golda Meir, Moshe Dayan, Abba Eban, Shimon Peres, Teddy Kollek and dozens of ordinary people, the eminent British historian (The Holocaust) has produced a gripping epic. Gilbert’s extensive behind-the-scenes and on-the-battlefield coverage of Israel’s numerous wars with its Arab neighbors adds much new detail. While the narrative focuses predominantly on politics, high-level diplomacy and war, it also illuminates other topics, including the Jewish settlement of Palestine in the early years of this century, tensions between secularists and Orthodox Jews, Israeli military intelligence operations, the current impasse in negotiations with Palestinian Arabs and the ferment of Israeli society, which Gilbert portrays as a diverse mixture of immigrant peoples that embody many different strands of Judaism yet are united by Israeli culture.”

  • Nora

    There are millions of Jews in Israel and Jew hating loser like “Mike” finds a lefty loser like Lasse Wilhelmson as an authorative word on the country.

    Give me a break, loser Mike.

  • Mike

    Hi Toby, no offense since u seem the rational of the 4. But nora has just proved my point. And see bbc does report positive things about israel when it occurs, like the crack down on prostitution in it.

    But dude the stuff the israel government is doing in gaza, and Palestinian land is just wrong, and to censor it through name calling does not make it right. even in the iraq war americans protested about it.Unlike most areas of conflict the people in gaza was trapped and boxed in and with escape from the IDF

    even a well known doctor that works in israel and is liked loss his children to them.

    just a example

    Palestinian gynecologist and peace advocate Dr. Ezzeldeen Abu al-Aish speaks to Democracy Now! producer Anjali Kamat and Jacquie Soohen of Big Noise Films in his home in Jabaliya, Gaza, where Israeli shells killed three of his daughters and a niece two months ago. Walking through his daughters’ room, he points out the remnants from the attack: blood-stained walls, books, clothes, hand-drawn pictures, gaping holes that were once windows, burned-out bits of computers, twisted pieces of metal, destroyed cupboards, shattered glass, and shrapnel. [includes rush transcript]

    AMY GOODMAN: We turn now to one of the better known tragedies from Israel’s attack on Gaza, a tragedy that partly unfolded live on Israeli television. Dr. Ezzeldeen Abu al-Aish is a well-known Gazan gynecologist, peace advocate, who has worked in Israeli hospitals for several years. He speaks fluent Hebrew, and during the war he was a rare Palestinian voice on Israeli television and radio, giving daily accounts of life and death inside Gaza.

    Democracy Now! producer Anjali Kamat narrates the exchange that took place live on Israeli television a day and a half before the official end of what the Israelis called Operation Cast Lead.

    ANJALI KAMAT: On January 16th, when Dr. Abu al-Aish called Shlomi Eldar of Israel’s Channel 10 TV News, Israeli tank shells had just struck his home. They killed his family, he says. “I think I’m a bit overwhelmed, too.”

    He explains that Dr. Abu al-Aish is a physician at Tel Hashomer Hospital. He always feared his family would be hurt. His daughters were injured. “I want to save them, but they died on the spot, Shlomi. They were hit in the head.”

    A visibly emotional Eldar explains that the doctor had unsuccessfully tried to get out for many days and was afraid to even raise a white flag. “A shell hit his home,” Eldar says. “And I have to tell you, I do not know how to hang up this phone. I will not hang up this phone call.”

    The anchor calls on the Israeli Defense Forces to allow ambulances to get to the doctor’s family. Shlomi Eldar then excused himself from the show, took off his earpiece and rushed off the set to get help to Dr. Abu al-Aish.

    AMY GOODMAN: But the ambulances never reached the doctor’s home, which was surrounded by Israeli tanks. It was too late to save his three daughters—twenty-one-year-old Bessan, fifteen-year-old Mayar, and thirteen-year-old Aya—as well as his niece Nour, who was age fourteen. They were all killed instantly by the shells.

    JUAN GONZALEZ: The family says they walked a quarter of a mile carrying the dead and wounded through the streets, until they found an ambulance that took them to the closest hospital and then to the Erez crossing with Israel. Emergency vehicles organized by Israeli TV correspondent Shlomi Eldar awaited them at the border and took the doctor and his badly wounded sixteen-year-old daughter Shada to the Sheba Medical Center in Tel Aviv.

    AMY GOODMAN: Two months after the tragedy, Democracy Now! producer Anjali Kamat and Jacquie Soohen of Big Noise Films visited Dr. Abu al-Aish at his home in Jabaliya, Gaza. He pointed out the remnants from that fateful day: blood-stained walls, books, clothes, and hand-drawn pictures, gaping holes that were once windows, burned-out bits of computers, twisted pieces of metal, destroyed cupboards, shattered glass, and shrapnel. He told his story late Monday night to Anjali Kamat, as he walked through his daughter’s room.

    DR. EZZELDEEN ABU AL-AISH: We are standing in the scene of the tragedy, in the place where four lovely girls were sitting, building their dreams and their hopes, and in seconds, these dreams were killed. These flowers were dead. Three of my daughters and one niece were killed in one second on the 16th of January at a quarter to five p.m. Just a few seconds, I left them, and they stayed in the room—two daughters here, one daughter here, one daughter here, and my niece with them.

    The first shell came from the tank space, which is there, came to shell two daughters who were sitting here on their chairs. And when I heard this shell, I came inside the room to find, to look. I can’t recognize my daughters. Their heads were cut off their bodies. They were separated from their bodies, and I can’t recognize whose body is this. They were drowning in a pool of blood. This is the pool of blood. Even look here. This is their brain. These are parts of their brain. Aya was lying on the ground. Shada was injured, and her eye is coming out. Her fingers were torn, just attached by a tag of skin. I felt disloved, out of space, screaming, “What can I do?”

    They were not satisfied by the first shell and to leave my eldest daughter. But the second shell soon came to kill Aya, to injure my niece, who came down from the third floor, and to kill my eldest daughter Bessan, who was in the kitchen and came at that moment, screaming and jumping, “Dad! Dad! Aya is injured!”

    The second shell, it penetrated the wall between this room to enter the other room. Look. This is the room with the weapons, where this room was fully equipped with weapons. These are the weapons which were in this room. These are the weapons. These are the weapons: the books and their clothes. These were the science handouts. There, you see, these are her handouts for the courses that she studies, which is stained with her blood. It’s mixed with her blood. These are the books. These are the weapons that I equipped my daughters with: with education, with knowledge, with dreams, with hopes, with loves.

    I am a gynecologist who practiced most of my time in Israel. I was trained in Israel. And I devoted my life and my work for the benefit of humanity and well-being, to serve patients, not as someone else that you are delivering or helping choose. I am dealing with patients and human beings. We treat patients equally, with respect, with dignity, with privacy. Politicians and leaders should learn from doctors these values and these norms and to adopt them.

    ANJALI KAMAT: Have you received an official response from Israel about why your home was targeted, about why your daughters were killed?

    DR. EZZELDEEN ABU AL-AISH: What I received, that they admitted their responsibility about shelling my house and killing my daughters and my niece. That’s what I received. But other—the reasons behind that, you can’t ask them. They justified something which is not convincing, and it has many criticisms.

    ANJALI KAMAT: What did they say?

    DR. EZZELDEEN ABU AL-AISH: You know, they said there were—they think there were snipers on the roof of my building. It’s important to say the truth, and the truth lies here: only innocent civilian girls were in this room and this building and this surrounding. Nothing else.

    ANJALI KAMAT: Doctor, you’re going to be traveling to the United States in a few weeks. What’s your message to the government of the United States, to the people of the United States?

    DR. EZZELDEEN ABU AL-AISH: To judge things by two eyes and that the coin has two sides, and that there is a nation, a Palestinian people in Gaza, who are waiting to get their rights and their chances of living equally, as every nation in the world. And it’s important for the Obama’s administration to take the Israeli Arab file seriously and to deal with it seriously as soon as possible, because it’s a matter of saving lives. There is no need for delay. It’s important to start solving with the minimum justice that what are we looking for: respect human rights, equality, dignity and justice. And what they like for themselves, I want Mr. Obama to put himself in the position of the Palestinians and to defend the rights of the Palestinians, as he is in the position of the Israelis.

    This is Mayar’s book. This is the math book. Mayar, who was fifteen years old in grade nine, who was dreaming to be a doctor and was happy that she will follow the same path as me. Mayar, she was the chairman of the students’ parliament at the school. She was elected. She was brilliant in mathematics, so genius. Even when I went to the school to see her friends, still they are remembering Mayar.

    Yes, this is Aya. This is Aya’s notebook. Look. Read what it’s saying: “Excellent. God bless you. Well-organized.” This is what was written by her teacher. It was her dream to be a journalist. She was outspoken. She was a very lovely, very beautiful girl.

    Bessan is a special girl, not [only] for me, for her uncles, for everyone who knew Bessan. She was twenty-one years old. She was about to graduate and get her BA from the Islamic University. She was a special girl. So humble, so wise, so beautiful.

    What can I say about my daughters? It’s living with me. It’s part of me. I smell them. I taste them. I speak with them. When I’m speaking with you, I am speaking with my daughters. These are the good memories of my daughters, and it will follow me the whole of my life. And I will do my best, this memory, to be changed into positive actions, to establish a foundation under their name for only girls, to empower girls and women, who will achieve and seal, these girls, the dreams of my daughters.

    You know, this invasion, from the beginning, I said it’s useless. It’s futile. No one is winning. The innocent civilians, the Gazans, civilians, paid the price of this invasion, no one else. And even the IDF, when they came here, the Israeli government, they said, “We want to teach the Gazans a lesson,” as if the Gazans are lacking teaching or education. Really, they succeeded in that, in educating the Palestinians, the Gazans especially, a lesson about strengthening animosity, hatredness, a bloodshed, and widening the gap between the two people in both sides. This is the only lesson. This is the only outcome of this invasion, nothing else. Anyone who is saying anything else apart from that, he is lying.

    Military ways proved its failure. We should look for other ways to give each other its rights. We don’t want to speak about peace. Peace is—you know, this word lost its meaning. We should find something else: respect, equality, justice and partnership. That’s what we should look for.

    I Just dont understand for a group who parents suffer so much, now does the same thing to others.

  • Mike

    “with escape from the IDF ” is meant to say with no escape from the IDF. but yes bbc does report crime and human rights violations that hamas have done,along with the U.N.

    Why i ask is it so tough for u to admit that israel government has done wrong and continues to do wrong?

    why is it hard to see, like r.m. sabato, and nora has shown that if u speak out against what the israel government has done and been doing.i.e. breaking international laws. human rights violations, continued land grabs, u get personal attacks launched at u?

    why is every critic of the state of Israel policy a jew hater, or self hating jew are there not a single jew who criticize Israel policy without being anti-semite?

    would not logically a country’s government lie to u or distort the truth at least once(often more but)?

    Do u truly believe that the israel government has done no wrong ever?

    Do u truly believe that only jews are the chosen people and everyone else is lesser? or do u believe like most people we are all equal no matter race, color, religious belief?

  • R.M.

    An Arab-made Misery.
    by Nonie Darwish

    International donors pledged almost $4.5 billion in aid for Gaza earlier this month. It has been very painful for me to witness over the past few years the deteriorating humanitarian situation in that narrow strip where I lived as a child in the 1950s.

    The media tend to attribute Gaza’s decline solely to Israeli military and economic actions against Hamas. But such a myopic analysis ignores the problem’s root cause: 60 years of Arab policy aimed at cementing the Palestinian people’s status as stateless refugees in order to use their suffering as a weapon against Israel.

    As a child in Gaza in the 1950s, I experienced the early results of this policy. Egypt, which then controlled the territory, conducted guerrilla-style operations against Israel from Gaza. My father commanded these operations, carried out by Palestinian fedayeen, Arabic for “self-sacrifice.” Back then, Gaza was already the front line of the Arab jihad against Israel. My father was assassinated by Israeli forces in 1956.

    It was in those years that the Arab League started its Palestinian refugee policy. Arab countries implemented special laws designed to make it impossible to integrate the Palestinian refugees from the 1948 Arab war against Israel. Even descendants of Palestinian refugees who are born in another Arab country and live there their entire lives can never gain that country’s passport. Even if they marry a citizen of an Arab country, they cannot become citizens of their spouse’s country. They must remain “Palestinian” even though they may have never set foot in the West Bank or Gaza.

    This policy of forcing a Palestinian identity on these people for eternity and condemning them to a miserable life in a refugee camp was designed to perpetuate and exacerbate the Palestinian refugee crisis.

    So was the Arab policy of overpopulating Gaza. The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East, whose main political support comes from Arab countries, encourages high birth rates by rewarding families with many children. Yasser Arafat said the Palestinian woman’s womb was his best weapon.

    Arab countries always push for classifying as many Palestinians as possible as “refugees.” As a result, about one-third of the Palestinians in Gaza still live in refugee camps. For 60 years, Palestinians have been used and abused by Arab regimes and Palestinian terrorists in their fight against Israel.

    Now it is Hamas, an Islamist terror organization supported by Iran, which is using and abusing Palestinians for this purpose. While Hamas leaders hid in the well-stocked bunkers and tunnels they prepared before they provoked Israel into attacking them, Palestinian civilians were exposed and caught in the deadly crossfire between Hamas and Israeli soldiers.

    As a result of 60 years of this Arab policy, Gaza has become a prison camp for 1.5 million Palestinians. Both Israel and Egypt are fearful of terrorist infiltration from Gaza — all the more so since Hamas took over — and have always maintained tight controls over their borders with Gaza. The Palestinians continue to endure hardships because Gaza continues to serve as the launching pad for terror attacks against Israeli citizens. Those attacks come in the form of Hamas missiles that indiscriminately target Israeli kindergartens, homes and businesses.

    And Hamas continued these attacks more than two years after Israel withdrew from Gaza in the hope that this step would begin the process of building a Palestinian state, eventually leading to a peaceful, two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. There was no “cycle of violence” then, no justification for anything other than peace and prosperity. But instead, Hamas chose Islamic jihad. Gazans’ and Israelis’ hopes have been met with misery for Palestinians and missiles for Israelis.

    Hamas, an Iran proxy, has become a danger not only to Israel, but also to Palestinians as well as to neighboring Arab states, who fear the spread of radical Islam could destabilize their countries.

    Arabs claim they love the Palestinian people, but they seem more interested in sacrificing them. If they really loved their Palestinian brethren, they’d pressure Hamas to stop firing missiles at Israel. In the longer term, the Arab world must end the Palestinians’ refugee status and thereby their desire to harm Israel. It’s time for the 22 Arab countries to open their borders and absorb the Palestinians of Gaza who wish to start a new life. It is time for the Arab world to truly help the Palestinians, not use them.

    Mrs. Darwish, who grew up in Gaza City and Cairo, is the author, most recently, of “Cruel and Usual Punishment,” (Thomas Nelson, 2009).

    Copyright – Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.

  • R.M.

    hamas use UN ambulance to smuggle terrorists in Gaza:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MAR_Iwq9-R0&feature=related

  • R.M.
  • R.M.
  • Nora

    ” But nora has just proved my point. And see bbc does report positive things about israel when it occurs, like the crack down on prostitution in it.”

    I have done no such thing. And prositution in Israel isn’t as bad as in Europe or in the US and it doesn’t need the BBC to tout its handling.

    Let the BBC talk about women trafficking by Brits.

  • Nora

    “But dude the stuff the israel government is doing in gaza, and Palestinian land is just wrong…”

    Mike you hypocrite, what about the war Arabs have been waging on Jews for over a hundred years?

    Talk about that you Jew hating loser.

  • Mike

    Yet again u proved my point nora, i must thank u instead of rebuking my points u name call. even quoting me yet giving no concrete evidence that what the state of israel is doing is wrong.

    silly girl.

  • Teamau Linguar

    After reading all the posts by R.M and Nora, I am just that much more convinced why Jews get their reputation/stereor type.
    (R.M, don’t deny that you are a Jew, for pete’s sake)

  • Nora

    “Yet again u proved my point nora,….”

    You have only one point, “Mike” Israel is bad and the Arabs are right in wanting to exterminate the Jewish State.

    That’s the upshot of all your posts.

  • R.M.

    Mike/teamau linguar what reputation /stereortype do joooooooooooooos have? what do you know about jooooooooooooooooos…..let me know the ways of jooooooooooooooooooooooos?

  • Mike

    Hi nora,

    the state of israel policies are bad, and inhuman, if it was any other country the u.n. or u.s would have sanction it long ago. You do know israel has countless u.n. violated against it. yet they still proceed. and that gazan war you where so happy about, it is the first time in recent history where civilains could not flee or escape while it was happening which could be considered a war crime.

    so yet again nora u have proven me right. Nice try trying to change the subject or attack me and r.m. your just a fool.

    By your posting it shows me and many others see that u cannot defend the action the israel government have been doing. The only defense u have is everyone else is bad,except israel.

    Stop acting that only isreal and jews are the superior race, we are all equal and maybe one day u can see that.

    “exterminate the Jewish State” please, u must mean exterminate the muslim so israel has at least 80 percents jews right?

    your bigotry knows no bounds.

  • R.M.

    Its your own fault if you feel hurt … when someone defends something or someone they know nothing about …that’s what I call a fool . So you think Jews think they are superior? That’s your beef about Jews? How ignorant you are about Jews ….Maybe you believe the famous libel that’s current in the arab world right now that jews make matza with the blood of a young arabs …That what was believed in Europe before the holocaust …Maybe you should study the religion a bit and you would not feel so jealous ….its your problem not the Jews…..its all a question of ethical values…..I guess ,as they say ignorance is bliss …

  • Mike

    haha, just u r.m. would say something that is contrary to everything u said before. U forget, even when i have noted this time and time again, i have no problems with jews or anyone just the state of israel policies and its thinking it is supior and suffered therefore it cant be criticized and has the right to do inhumane acts to non jews.

    maybe if u follow your own religon a bit more u realize the actions of the state of israel is opposite to the action of its religion. At least one would hope. but the religion of 2k years ago the jews had was pretty scary and matches the actions of the israel government.

    “when someone defends something or someone they know nothing about …that’s what I call a fool”
    so therefore u admit your a fool or are u just blind to whats going on. since we have the internet i assume the first.

    thank you for spewing garbage on this thread to show just how much a fool u are and not being able to debate what israel is doing as not wrong but wrong. And i wish not to join a religion that murders innocents and has rabbi supporting it and thinks nothing of it, be it Muslim or Judaism

    Good day.

  • Mike

    some history i found for u since i know will be on this later

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P5QymNCltYs

  • Mike

    fyi
    no civilized society the “question of ethical values”
    is not valid when u kill innocents, illegal land grabs and discrimation.

    therefore maybe the question should be is should israel re-think what they think as ethical when the world see it as morally,ethically,and in any way wrong.

  • Mike

    r.m. face it
    take a look over the last 60 years since the Israeli state was formed. From consistent wars, to a tremendous amount of funding by the U.S. for arms it becomes quite obvious what their intention is and had been over the decades.

  • R.M.

    Mike you can’t go back on what you said:
    “Stop acting that only isreal and jews are the superior race”
    you said it ……..”superior race” that says it all .That shows who you really are : a racist …
    and …..again , I have never said I was jewish…….I rest my case …hahahahahah …

  • Mike

    I never said you were,yes israel acts as if it is, but as more and more people wake up to its illegal activity’s and war crimes we will see what happens.

    The defense rest surly on u(which u failed to convince anyone). and your baseless attack do nothing to prove your point

    That sounds good you should rest your case, since u got nothing. oh wait bbcwatch haha what a joke, please stop embarrassing yourself on here.

  • R.M.

    Israel was attacked again they won again ….get over it ….the propaganda out of the Palestinians and the Arab world is worse than the nazis .they lie and you swallow their lies because your weak brain cells are few ….hamas are fascists who kill and sacrifice their own people . they continue sending rockets because they don’t want peace … mamhoud Abbas wrote his dissertation on holocaust denying that shows what kind of people israel is dealing with …you are on the wrong side of history ….I think you need to watch Pallywood again ……
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t_B1H-1opys#IIfAj_eg2EE

  • Mike

    poor r.m. u hate the arabs that bad, aww we see who is the real racist, if u hate arabs u can say it. but by your posting you have should it already.

    Tzipi Livni, of the centrist Kadima party, and Labour leader Ehud Barak both say they are believers in the creation of a Palestinian state, seeing it as a necessity if Israel is to remain both democratic and Jewish in character in the face of Palestinian population growth. racist,

    your new great leader

    Benjamin Netanyahu, the leader of the right-of-centre Likud party, says he does not want Israel to rule the Palestinians, but says they should not be allowed things he considers a threat to Israeli security, such as an army, control of airspace or the Jordan Valley. This is in line with Likud’s 1999 charter, which “flatly rejects” a sovereign Palestinian state, but backs Palestinian self rule.

    He opposed the US-backed peace talks launched in Annapolis in November 2007, saying he did not believe there was a suitable partner on the Palestinian side, and stresses the need for economic development for the Palestinians before serious negotiations can take place.

    Mr Netanyahu has been a strong proponent of the settlement movement. He says if he becomes prime minister he will permit continued growth within existing settlements – which is in contravention of Israel’s commitments under the Annapolis peace process and before it the road map.

    Under Kadima, building has continued in settlements, particularly around Jerusalem, with approvals for new construction authorised by Mr Barak as defence minister.
    no peace and violation of international laws.

    However, Kadima’s founding premise – which Labour backed – was a policy of unilateral withdrawals from West Bank settlements in the wake of the removal of settlers and soldiers from the Gaza Strip in 2005.

    Mr Netanyahu’s vehement opposition to “dividing Jerusalem” is a central part of his platform, and he frequently accuses his opponents – particularly Ms Livni – of trying to “give up” Jerusalem.
    meaning no peace.

    Critics fear he plans to create a serious of disconnected, semi-autonomous “economic zones” in the West Bank that are a far cry from the contiguous, sovereign state Palestinians want.

    just a month ago, yet giving lip service the other route.

    The status of Jerusalem, and particularly the key religious sites in its Old City, is one of the most hotly contested issues in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Both sides want to locate their capitals in the city. The international community regards predominanly Palestinian East Jerusalem as occupied territory.

    Israel’s use of white phosphorus shells over densely populated areas during the recent Gaza conflict may constitute war crimes, a rights group has said.

    Human Rights Watch accuses Israel of “deliberately or recklessly” using the shells in violation of the laws of war, causing “needless civilian deaths”.

    The New York-based group’s report is based on research conducted immediately after the conflict ended in January.

    Israel has insisted that all weapons it used in the offensive were lawful.

    It has also said repeatedly that it sought to avoid unnecessary civilian deaths among Gaza’s Palestinian population.

    Israel said it would conduct its own investigation into whether any of its munitions were used outside international law, but has not yet made public any results.

    The substance, which is used to lay smokescreens, is legal for use on open ground but its use in built-up areas where civilians are found is banned under international conventions.

    ‘Killing civilians’

    Human Rights Watch (HRW) on Wednesday described Israel’s repeated firing of white phosphorus shells as indiscriminate and evidence of war crimes.

    The Israeli military fired white phosphorus repeatedly over densely populated areas, even when its troops weren’t in the area and safer smoke shells were available
    Fred Abrahams
    Human Rights Watch researcher

    The group’s 71-page report, Rain of fire: Israel’s unlawful use of white phosphorus in Gaza, is based on witness accounts of use of the munitions, as well as ballistics evidence and official Israeli documents.

    It concludes that the Israeli military “repeatedly exploded white phosphorus munitions in the air over populated areas, killing and injuring civilians and damaging civilian structures, including a school, a market, a humanitarian aid warehouse and a hospital”.

    HRW researchers found spent shells and canisters containing white phosphorus on streets, apartment roofs and at a UN-run school, report says. All the shells found were manufactured in the US, it adds.

    Fred Abrahams, co-author of the report, said: “In Gaza, the Israeli military didn’t just use white phosphorus in open areas as a screen for its troops.

    A boy on the rubble of a house in Jabaliya refugee camp destroyed in the Israeli military offensive in Gaza

    Gaza case studies: Weapons use
    Q&A: White phosphorus injuries
    UN criticises Israelis over Gaza

    “It fired white phosphorus repeatedly over densely populated areas, even when its troops weren’t in the area and safer smoke shells were available.

    “As a result, civilians needlessly suffered and died.”

    HRW says senior commanders should be held to account for it describes as “a pattern or policy of phosphorus use” by the military that must have required their approval.

    Earlier this week, UN human rights investigators also questioned the legality of Israel’s Gaza offensive in a wide-ranging report to the UN Human Rights Council.

    The Israeli organisation Physicians for Human Rights also released a report saying Israel had violated international law and ethics codes during the Gaza operation. great ethical values right?

    It accused Israeli forces of “attacks on medical personnel, damage to medical facilities and indiscriminate attacks on civilians not involved in the fighting”.

    The Israeli military says it is investigating specific claims of abuses and argues that it did its utmost to protect civilians during a conflict in which militants operated from populated civilian areas.

    Palestinian medical authorities say more than 1,300 Palestinians died. Thirteen Israelis, including three civilians, were killed.

    thank you, good bye, case closed, hang it up your done.

  • Nora

    “the state of israel policies are bad, and inhuman, if it was any other country the u.n. or u.s would have sanction it long ago.”

    Yea, like Russia in Chechnya, or China in Tibet, the Congo where millions are being murdered, or countless other countries where people are being killed with impunity.

    You are fixated on Israel because you are an antisemite, Mike.

    Be happy in your Jew hatred, bigot.

  • Nora

    “no civilized society the “question of ethical values”
    is not valid when u kill innocents, illegal land grabs and discrimation.”

    Land grab? You mean the US land grab from Mexico or do you mean China’s land grab from Tibet, etc.

    Don’t talk to me about land grabs or about killing innocents This is what you friends in the Arab world do every day.

    If the Arabs hadn’t been attacking Israel for the last sixty years there would have been no wars.

    You are fixated on the Jews, Mike admit it.

  • Nora

    Your factoids about the conflict are selective and they are worthless. Here you are talking about deaths in a war started by Gazans firing rockets into Israel aimed at civilians, Mike. Talk about that.

    Talk about Hamas wanting to exterminate the Jewish State, Jew hater, Mike!

  • Nora

    Let’s put the Arab Israeli conflict in some perspective:

    “Despite the media’s obsession with the Mideast conflict, it has cost many fewer lives than the youth bulges in West Africa, Lebanon or Algeria.

    In the six decades since Israel’s founding, “only” some 62,000 people (40,000 Arabs, 22,000 Jews) have been killed in all the Israeli-Arab wars and Palestinian terror attacks.

    During that same time, some 11 million Muslims have been killed in wars and terror attacks — mostly at the hands of other Muslims.

    In Arab nations such as Lebanon (150,000 dead in the civil war between 1975 and 1990) or Algeria (200,000 dead in the Islamists’ war against their own people between 1999 and 2006),”

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123171179743471961.html

    This puts Mike’s obsession with Israel in perspective!

  • Nora

    “Palestinian militants’ advantage in Gaza?
    The key there is a system of trap-doors and tunnels.”

    By Don Duncan
    from the March 20, 2009 edition

    “Nahr alBared, Lebanon – The humanitarian focus in Gaza will soon begin to shift, thanks to the more than $4 billion in pledges that were made by international donors at the Sharm el-Sheik conference this month.

    Among the emergency relief workers, the humanitarian workers, and medics flooding the strip, there will be some unexpected people trawling through the rubble before reconstruction starts.

    A small army of architects and urban planners working with the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem, are poised to make a bee-line to the half-standing buildings that remain in the strip. In the broken remnants of Gaza, they say, lie the clues as to what shape Israeli military practice is likely to take in the future.

    One of the few tactical advantages Palestinian militants have in the face of Israel’s military might is an intimate knowledge and command of their own architecture and urban space. The maze-like streets, alleys, and thickly packed, high-rise buildings of the Palestinian refugee camps have played to the favor of militants in the camps in times of conflict.

    This was made clear most recently in in 2007, when a small group of Islamic militants infiltrated the Nahr al-Bared Palestinian refugee camp in northern Lebanon and used it as a base. Holed up there, the militants manipulated the architecture to their military advantage, much as Palestinian militants traditionally have. The Lebanese military was unable to negotiate the camp and it took more than three months of heavy shelling to topple the militant group that was estimated to number under 1,000.

    “The [Palestinian] camp is an urban neighborhood but it is also a single building – it is contiguous,” says Eyal Weizman, an Israeli architect, academic, and author of “Hollow Land: Israel’s Architecture of Occupation.” He goes on to say, “This contiguity of the structure allows a certain movement across it that is not possible in other urban environments.”

    When under attack, many Palestinian camps across the Middle East can deploy a system of trap doors, hallways, rooftops, and holes through walls, connecting apartments and buildings. The camp’s militants use this system to command full control of the camp from the inside, and advantage over the aggressor outside.

    When the Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) infiltrated the Palestinian refugee camp at Jenin in the West Bank in 2002 by breaking through walls and proceeding to dominate the camp internally, it was clear it had been taking notes.

    So to keep ahead, the Palestinians have to innovate further. This has made warfare between Israel and enemies such as Hamas and Hezbollah a kind of tactical conversation.

    “There is an asymmetry in power – fire power, political power, military power – and that asymmetry is always compensated by the ingenuity of the weak,” says Laleh Khalili, a professor of Middle East politics at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London.

    During the summer war in Lebanon between Israel and Hezbollah in 2006, this ingenuity took the form of underground caches and bunkers where Hezbollah managed to withstand intense Israeli bombardment for 33 days. By the time Israel launched its attack on Gaza last December, the subterranean holdout had become the new front in the conflict.

    “Hamas has disappeared underground and Israel controls the sky,” says Mr. Weizman. “The more dominance they have of the sky, the more the Palestinians master the subterranean.”

    The permeability of the Palestinian camp, once a strong defense strategy for the Palestinians, has been effectively neutralized by the IDF’s appropriation of the tactic in their own ground offensives on camps.

    So Palestinians have had to push the envelope to stay ahead and they have done this by extending what was once an above-ground network of passages beneath the surface of the camp.

    The camps in Gaza have extended underground, not just in the form of the tunnel lifelines to Egypt at Rafah, but in a sophisticated network of bunkers, control rooms, and hideouts at inland camps like Al Shati and Jabilia. This is the latest puzzle the IDF has to solve in its ongoing cat-and-mouse game of war tactics with the Palestinian militants.

    How close they are to solving it may become clearer once the architects and urban planners working with B’Tselem are allowed to reenter Gaza. The teams will undertake a “forensic” survey of the rubble, taking photos, discerning patterns of destruction, and creating 3-D reconstructions of areas and buildings.

    The survey will result in a public report in the coming months, and its findings may offer some indication as to how Israel will adapt its game to the new subterranean Palestinian resistance. Since Israel has not yet developed technology to discern this logic, the Palestinian militants remain one step ahead – for now.

    Don Duncan is a freelance reporter. His field work in Lebanon was supported by The Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting, in Washington D.C.”

    http://www.csmonitor.com/2009/0320/p09s01-coop.html

  • Nora

    http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1237727539851&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FPrinter

    “‘Charges of civilian shootings false’”

    Yaakov Lappin

    “Allegations that IDF soldiers deliberately shot and killed Palestinian civilians in Gaza during Operation Cast Lead have been found to be categorically untrue in official army investigations, an IDF source told The Jerusalem Post on Wednesday.

    The source spoke on condition of anonymity because the results of the investigations have not yet been officially released to the public. He stressed, however, that the investigations were close to completion.

    The investigations examined claims made by graduates of the Rabin Pre-military Academy during a conference held last month, which were later written up and printed in an academy pamphlet. Some Israeli media outlets, including Haaretz, then seized on the claims, and the allegations went on to make headlines around the world.

    During the conference, one soldier claimed a marksman opened fire on a mother and two of her children, in full knowledge that they were civilians, after a squadron commander told them to walk into a no-entry zone.

    “All of the soldiers who were involved in the conference were questioned – not as a punishment – but in order to understand whether they had witnessed these things. From all of the testimonies we collected, we can safely conclude that the soldiers who made the claims did not witness the events they describe,” the source said.

    “All of it was based on rumors. In the incident of the alleged shooting of the mother and her children, what really happened was that a marksman fired a warning shot to let them know that they were entering a no-entry zone. The shot was not even fired in their general direction,” the source said.

    “The marksman’s commander ran up the stairs of a Palestinian home, got up on the roof, and asked the marksman why he shot at the civilians. The marksman said he did not fire on the civilians. But the soldiers on the first floor of that house heard the commander’s question being shouted. And from that point, the rumor began to spread,” the source added.

    “We can say with absolute certainty that the marksman did not fire on the woman and her children. Later, the company commander spoke with the marksman and his commander. We know with certainty that this incident never took place,” he said.

    The source said that a second allegation of killing of civilians was also false, though he could not provide further details at this stage.

    “We investigate every allegation in order to see whether these incidents took place, and to draw conclusions if necessary,” the source stressed.

    “Unfortunately, due to competition, sections of the press picked up this story and ran with it. It is a shame the media promoted this sort of spin all over the world,” he added. It is unlikely the damage to Israel’s image from the allegations can be repaired, irrespective of the results of the investigation, he noted.

    “It is a shame that the media allowed Palestinian manipulations to spread,” he said.

    “Look at the allegation that we killed 48 civilians in a UN school in Gaza. In reality, seven people were killed, and four to five of them were terrorists. The UN apologized, but the damage is done,” the source said.”

    http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1237727539851&pagename=JPArticle%2FShowFull

  • R.M.

    Human Rights Watch is one of the most powerful organizations claiming to promote international morality and law, but along with Amnesty International and the United Nations, shares responsibility for the transformation of these principles into weapons aimed at Israel.

    In the most recent example, HRW, headed by Kenneth Roth, initiated a campaign alleging that the IDF was using white phosphorus weapons unlawfully in the conflict in Gaza with Hamas. The organization issued a news release, followed by a more detailed publication, while officials gave press interviews to promote the allegations. Marc Garlasco, who claims the title “senior military analyst” (based on a short stint in the Pentagon), declared, “White phosphorous can burn down houses and cause horrific burns when it touches the skin… Israel should not use it in Gaza’s densely populated areas.”

    In a few hours, the “white phosphorous” story was featured in dozens of newspapers, Internet blogs and television news programs. IDF officials, including Chief of General Staff Lt.-Gen. Gadi Ashkenazi, denied that Israel was using phosphorous in anti-personnel weapons, but this did not slow the viral spread of this story.

    HRW’s “evidence” was based entirely on innuendo and unverifiable “eyewitness” reports. One report states that “[o]n January 9, Human Rights Watch researchers on a ridge overlooking Gaza from the northwest observed multiple air-bursts of artillery-fired WP that appeared to be over the Gaza City/Jabalya area. In addition, Human Rights Watch has analyzed photographs taken by the media on the Israel-Gaza border.” HRW does not name its researchers; it does not provide a detailed location of its observation, nor does it identify the photos it “analyzed” making independent verification of this “evidence” impossible.

    INDEED, TWO days later, the International Committee of the Red Cross, which certainly cannot be accused of a pro-Israeli bias, issued a statement that backed the IDF statements. “Using phosphorus to illuminate a target or create smoke is legitimate under international law,” it said, adding that there was no evidence that Israel was “using phosphorus in a questionable way, such as burning down buildings or consciously putting civilians at risk.” (Flares assist search and rescue forces in saving the lives of wounded soldiers and preventing Hamas from snatching the bodies of dead soldiers. To claim that such operations are illegitimate is, in and of itself, immoral.)

    But these points were secondary to the NGO ideologues – the important point was that the images fit the dominant narrative of Israel as always guilty of war crimes, and of the Palestinians (or, in the 2006 Second Lebanon War, Hizbullah) as innocent victims. In this campaign, HRW was joined by Amnesty International, B’Tselem and the Palestinian Center for Human Rights. The latter two are funded by the European Union, ostensibly to promote democracy and human rights. When Hamas launched a phosphorus shell into Israel, these organizations, including HRW, were silent, as has been the case regarding the use of human shields in Gaza and other real war crimes.

    By the time the ICRC confirmed the IDF statements, the damage was done – the image of Israel as a serial violator of international law and human rights was reinforced – a major success for Hamas. CNN, the Times (London) and Christian Science Monitor ran major stories, embellished with quotes from doctors in Gaza, including propagandist Mads Gilbert, who claimed to have seen phosphorous burns. Gilbert also justified the 9/11 terror attacks, but this did not prevent the government-funded Norwegian Aid Committee from financing his incitement. (CNN quoted but then ignored Dr. Peter Grossman, a burns expert in California and unconnected with the conflict, who stated that “it is not possible to tell, based on pictures of burns, whether white phosphorus was responsible.”)

    Based on these reports, Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan repeated the false claim in an anti-Israel diatribe, thereby deepening the rift between Ankara and Jerusalem and increasing the sense of isolation in Israel.

    THE FALSE white-phosphorous allegation is part of a pattern led by HRW that reflects the modern version of the blood libel. For the past year, HRW has been a leader in the use of international legal rhetoric such as “collective punishment,” to attack Israel. And in the July 30, 2006 Kana incident in the Second Lebanon War, Lucy Mair (HRW’s former researcher with a prior history of anti-Israel campaigning) disregarded the Red Cross on-scene estimate of 28 casualties (which proved to be the actual figure) in favor of a higher estimate of 54 provided by an alleged “survivor.” HRW’s false estimate was widely picked up by the media and further disseminated by HRW in an August 1, 2006 press release, sparking an international outcry and leading to a 48-hour halt in IAF operations, which extended the war.

    Similarly, Marc Garlasco led HRW’s high-profile “investigation” into the Gaza Beach incident in 2006, repeating claims that “the evidence overwhelmingly supports the allegations that the civilians were killed by artillery shells fired by the IDF,” and ignoring details that did not fit his ideological “conclusion.” Garlasco was also among the authors of HRW’s “Razing Rafah” report of 2004, which contained many unverifiable and disputed claims, erased the context of terror and was used to justify HRW involvement in anti-Israel boycott campaigns.

    In this way, HRW and other self-proclaimed human rights organizations have contributed a great deal to undermining the moral basis of morality and international law. Instead of repeatedly calling for “independent investigations” of Israel, the donors to HRW need to undertake an investigation of how this once-serious organization has been destroyed from within.

    The writer is the chairman of the Political Science Department at Bar-Ilan University and executive director of NGO Monitor

  • Mike

    Hi nora,
    yes land grabs, as what u sited for the u.s. and china is junk, the u.s. is not still taking mexican land curruntly are they? as for china, china control the land. both are unrelated to what israel is currently doing. Not my fault u hate muslim, or the u.s. on top of that, that your own problem. as for the IDF there as trustworthy as mubgwbe in Zim. thoses two relate more correctly. If your so sure the IDF did nothing wrong than have a independent investigation. oh wait that independent investigation show they did. so your points are invalid. your blindness knows no bound does it.

  • Mike

    Tuesday, 27 January 2009
    More Nazi Rabbis – ‘there are no innocent civilians’

    As I have already documented, Israel’s Orthodox Rabbinate has been in the forefront of providing the ideological and spiritual justification for the worst of the barbarities in Gaza. Former Sephardi Chief Rabbi, Mordechai Eliyahu and his son, Chief Rabbi of Safed, have justified any amount of war crimes by declaring that the civilian population of Gaza are equally guilty as the fighters. And that of course includes children.

    Below is another article from Ha’aretz, this time on the Army Rabbis who performed a not dissimilar function to that of the Reich Church priests who accompanied German soldiers to the front in World War 2. They are the harbingers of death and destruction.

    Note how reference is made to the myth that the Palestinians were recent immigrants that people like Joan Peter’s (From Time Immemorial) a plagiarised book that Alan Dershowitz plagiarised (& which Norman Finkelstein exposed in his ‘Abuse of anti-Semitism’.

    ‘The Palestinians claim they deserve a state here, when in reality there was never a Palestinian or Arab state within the borders of our country. Moreover, most of them are new and came here close to the time of the War of Independence.”

    The ignorance of rabbis is well known but the death of innocent civilians can be traced directly to the lies of Israel’s propagandists.

    Tony Greenstein

    IDF rabbinate publication during Gaza war: We will show no mercy on the cruel
    By Amos Harel, Haaretz Correspondent

    During the fighting in the Gaza Strip, the religious media – and on two occasions, the Israel Defense Forces weekly journal Bamahane – were full of praise for the army rabbinate. The substantial role of religious officers and soldiers in the front-line units of the IDF was, for the first time, supported also by the significant presence of rabbis there.

    The chief army rabbi, Brigadier General Avichai Rontzki, joined the troops in the field on a number of occasions, as did rabbis under his command.

    Officers and soldiers reported that they felt “spiritually elevated” and “morally empowered” by conversations with rabbis who gave them encouragement before the confrontation with the Palestinians.
    But what exactly was the content of these conversations and of the plethora of written material disseminated by the IDF rabbinate during the war? A reservist battalion rabbi told the religious newspaper B’Sheva last week that Rontzki explained to his staff that their role was not “to distribute wine and challah for Shabbat to the troops,” but “to fill them with yiddishkeit and a fighting spirit.”

    An overview of some of the army rabbinate’s publications made available during the fighting reflects the tone of nationalist propaganda that steps blatantly into politics, sounds racist and can be interpreted as a call to challenge international law when it comes to dealing with enemy civilians.

    Haaretz has received some of the publications through Breaking the Silence, a group of former soldiers who collect evidence of unacceptable behavior in the army vis-a-vis Palestinians. Other material was provided by officers and men who received it during Operation Cast Lead. Following are quotations from this material:

    “[There is] a biblical ban on surrendering a single millimeter of it [the Land of Israel] to gentiles, though all sorts of impure distortions and foolishness of autonomy, enclaves and other national weaknesses. We will not abandon it to the hands of another nation, not a finger, not a nail of it.” This is an excerpt from a publication entitled “Daily Torah studies for the soldier and the commander in Operation Cast Lead,” issued by the IDF rabbinate. The text is from “Books of Rabbi Shlomo Aviner,” who heads the Ateret Cohanim yeshiva in the Muslim quarter of the Old City in Jerusalem.

    The following questions are posed in one publication: “Is it possible to compare today’s Palestinians to the Philistines of the past? And if so, is it possible to apply lessons today from the military tactics of Samson and David?” Rabbi Aviner is again quoted as saying: “A comparison is possible because the Philistines of the past were not natives and had invaded from a foreign land … They invaded the Land of Israel, a land that did not belong to them and claimed political ownership over our country … Today the problem is the same. The Palestinians claim they deserve a state here, when in reality there was never a Palestinian or Arab state within the borders of our country. Moreover, most of them are new and came here close to the time of the War of Independence.”

    The IDF rabbinate, also quoting Rabbi Aviner, describes the appropriate code of conduct in the field: “When you show mercy to a cruel enemy, you are being cruel to pure and honest soldiers. This is terribly immoral. These are not games at the amusement park where sportsmanship teaches one to make concessions. This is a war on murderers. ‘A la guerre comme a la guerre.’”

    This view is also echoed in publications signed by Rabbis Chen Halamish and Yuval Freund on Jewish consciousness. Freund argues that “our enemies took advantage of the broad and merciful Israeli heart” and warns that “we will show no mercy on the cruel.”

    In addition to the official publications, extreme right-wing groups managed to bring pamphlets with racist messages into IDF bases. One such flyer is attributed to “the pupils of Rabbi Yitzhak Ginsburg” – the former rabbi at Joseph’s Tomb and author of the article “Baruch the Man,” which praises Baruch Goldstein, who massacred unarmed Palestinians in Hebron. It calls on “soldiers of Israel to spare your lives and the lives of your friends and not to show concern for a population that surrounds us and harms us. We call on you … to function according to the law ‘kill the one who comes to kill you.’ As for the population, it is not innocent … We call on you to ignore any strange doctrines and orders that confuse the logical way of fighting the enemy.”

    The Israeli human rights organization Yesh Din has called on Defense Minister Ehud Barak to immediately remove Rabbi Rontzki from his post as chief rabbi.

    In response, an IDF spokesman said that: “Overall, letters that are sent to the chief of staff [such as the request for Rontzki's dismissal] are reviewed and an answer is sent to those who make the request, not to the media.”

    And another Nazi Rabbi David Bar-Chayim

    “I don’t believe that there are any innocent civilians.”

    Rabbis: ‘Gazans Aren’t Innocent, Don’t Risk Soldiers’
    “With operation Cast Lead ongoing, rabbis and legal scholars have taken the position that the Arabs who democratically elected Hamas are not innocent bystanders in the conflict. As seen on Arutz Sheva.” IsraelNN.com

    Rabbi David Bar-Chayim says in this news bulletin:
    “We’re talking about a society that is dedicated to murder and savagery and barbarism.”
    “It is against the Torah, and for that matter against common sense and basic universal human morality that we should endanger even one of our soldiers when fighting such evil, the sole purpose of which is to destroy us.”

    “‘When the evil are destroyed, there is rejoicing.’ … These people are evil. When such people are destroyed, we have no tears to shed.”
    “I don’t believe that there are any innocent civilians.”
    This is what Israelis watch, night after night, on their TV sets…

  • Mike

    Israeli strike on school filmed
    Advertisement

    Mobile phone footage from Gaza shows the moment on 17 January when a UN school in Beit Lahiya was hit by shellfire on the last day of Israel’s three-week offensive.

    The burning lumps are consistent with the incendiary device white phosphorus (WP) – which is banned from use within areas of civilian concentration under international weapons agreements.

    The UN says at least two artillery rounds emitting phosphorus landed inside the school where 1,600 Palestinians were seeking refuge from the bombardment. A high explosive shell also hit one of the school buildings, killing two boys, aged five and seven.

    The Israeli army says the weapons it used in Gaza were all legal, but has launched an investigation into allegations of illegal use of WP.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/7841406.stm

  • Mike

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MdrgleGA_-E

    they your so far moral leaders

    preaching in time of war one does not make a difference between enemy’s and innocents.

  • Mike

    russia was almost sanction and a cold war almost started because of georgia, you fool, china took over tibet along time ago, (on they own i must add) and it is a part of its country. china did not fench in the Tibetans so your comparison do not tie.

  • Mike

    http://youngfoxredux.blogspot.com/2009/01/take-walk-through-gaza.html

    here some proof showing your idf reports to be wrong

  • Mike

    US Should Cut Aid Equal to Construction Cost
    August 5, 2008

    If Israel approves this West Bank settlement, it will be breaking repeated promises to halt all new settlement activity and violating international law…Rather than expanding these illegal settlements, the Israeli government should be dismantling them.
    Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch.

    The Israeli government’s plan to back a settlement in the occupied West Bank violates international humanitarian law and should be stopped, Human Rights Watch said today. Israeli restrictions on the Palestinian population caused by the Israeli-only settlements and infrastructure also seriously infringe on the right to freedom of movement and other basic rights of Palestinians in the West Bank.

    Israeli defense ministry officials have sought approval for the construction of 22 houses in Maskiot, a former Israeli army base in the Jordan Valley. It is the first time Israel has sanctioned new building on the site, effectively ending a nine-year moratorium on the creation of new settlements. Defense Minister Ehud Barak, whose ministry oversees the occupied territories, has yet to make a final decision. The last time Israel gave approval to a new settlement in the Occupied Palestinian Territories was in 1999.

    “If Israel approves this West Bank settlement, it will be breaking repeated promises to halt all new settlement activity and violating international law,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. “Rather than expanding these illegal settlements, the Israeli government should be dismantling them.”

    The defense ministry’s proposals come amid a rapid acceleration of house-building within existing West Bank settlements and despite Israel’s November 2007 commitments at the Annapolis peace conference to halt further development.

    According to figures released by the defense ministry in July, the Jewish settler population within the West Bank and East Jerusalem grew by 5.5 percent in the last year and is now estimated to include more than 400,000 people, almost four times what it was a decade ago. Since the Annapolis agreement, the Israeli government has contended that it is permitted to expand housing within existing settlements. But the defense ministry’s plan to approve construction for the first time in Maskiot would breach even that claimed limit.

    In 2006, Israel had announced plans to build a new settlement in Maskiot, but then-defense minister Amir Peretz abandoned the proposal amid international criticism. Despite that policy reversal, 12 families have set up temporary homes within the former base at Maskiot. Israel evacuated these families from its settlements in Gaza three years ago and promised not to relocate them to the West Bank. The government’s plan would formalize their stay in the West Bank, contrary to its previous commitments.

    Israel’s policy of encouraging, financing, establishing, and expanding Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories violates international humanitarian law concerning occupied territories. Under the Fourth Geneva Convention, which applies to the territories, Israel is prohibited from transferring civilians from its own territory into the occupied territory and is prohibited from creating permanent changes in the occupied territory that are not for the benefit of the occupied population. Several United Nations Security Council resolutions have demanded that Israel remove its settlements from the Occupied Palestinian Territories.

    The Israeli government has suggested that the existence of settlements may influence territorial concessions that might be part of any future peace deal. For example, speaking of prospective peace talks, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said in a July 2007 interview with the PBS program Newshour in the United States that “the demographic changes will have to be considered and the population centers most likely will have to be taken into account.”

    Human Rights Watch called upon the United States, by far the largest donor to Israel (US$2.8 billion in 2008), to take measures to avoid being financially complicit in the expansion of settlements and the security measures that they entail. First, the US government should, publicly and forcefully, state its opposition to any further settlement expansion and, second, deduct from US aid to Israel an amount equal to Israel’s expenditures on the settlements.

    “The United States should make clear that it will have nothing to do with illegal new settlement construction,” said Whitson.

    Israel maintains strict rules in the West Bank based on nationality that discriminate against the Palestinian population. The settlements house only Israeli citizens and, by virtue of a strict permit system, enforced by the Israel Defense Forces and settlement committees, the Israeli government prohibits Palestinians in the West Bank from driving on the “settler-only” roads or attending “settler-only” schools.

    At times, Israel has sought to justify the settler-only roads as necessary to protect the security of the settlers. In light of the unlawful nature of the settlements, the best way to protect the security of the settlers would be to evacuate them to Israel. Even while the settlements remain, the rules banning all vehicles registered in the Occupied Palestinian Territories from traveling on such roads are not narrowly tailored to meet risks to security in a way that minimizes restrictions on Palestinian travel, because the rules treat every West Bank Palestinian as a security threat without attempting to limit restrictions to those who are shown to pose a genuine threat.

    As the Israeli occupation of the West Bank enters its fifth decade, there is a growing view that Israel is bound not only by international humanitarian law governing the exceptional situation of occupation but also by international human rights law, which imposes additional obligations on how a state treats all those under its control. For example, in 2007, the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination – the official body that interprets obligations under the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, which Israel has ratified – reiterated that Israeli settlements in the West Bank “are not only illegal under international law but are an obstacle to the enjoyment of human rights by the whole population, without distinction as to national or ethnic origin.”

    Similar obligations are imposed by the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, both of which Israel has also ratified. These legally binding treaties prohibit any discrimination and guarantee to all persons equal and effective protection against discrimination on any ground, such as race, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, or other status.

    Expanding Israeli settlements will impose further discrimination on Palestinians in violation of the basic rights to freedom of movement and residence, to own property alone as well as in association with others, and to housing.

    The maintenance and expansion of the settlements also have seriously affected humanitarian conditions in Palestinian communities, restricting their freedom of movement and access to supplies and essential services and land. In Hebron, Israel has justified the removal of Palestinian residents from a large part of the city center in order to secure the expanded Jewish settler population there.

    Research by Human Rights Watch also shows that Israeli settlements have contributed to a deteriorating security environment, prompting clashes between Israeli security forces and local residents, and between Palestinians and Israeli settlers. Human Rights Watch and other nongovernmental organizations in the region have documented frequent crimes by settlers against Palestinians living near settlements that have often gone unpunished by the Israeli authorities. Most recently, in June 2008, the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem recorded film of settlers beating a Palestinian shepherd, his wife and their nephew for letting their animals graze near the settlement of Susia in the West Bank. (Israeli police arrested two settlers, but have not brought charges against them to date.) There are also frequent incidents of Palestinians stoning or attacking settlers or Israel Defense Forces, which the Israeli authorities investigate and prosecute.

  • Mike

    From 1967 to the end of 2007, Israel established 121 settlements in the West Bank that were recognized by the Interior Ministry as “communities”, even though some of them contain stretches of land on which the built-up area is not contiguous. 12 other settlements are located on land annexed by Israel in 1967 and made part of Jerusalem. There are additional 100 or so unrecognized settlements, referred to in the media as “outposts.” The 16 settlements built in the Gaza Strip and three settlements in the northern West Bank were dismantled in 2005 during implementation of the “disengagement plan.”

    As part of the regime, Israel has stolen thousands of dunams of land from the Palestinians. On this land, Israel has established dozens of settlements in which hundreds of thousands of Israeli civilians now live. Israel forbids Palestinians to enter and use these lands and uses the settlements to justify numerous violations of Palestinian rights, such as the right to housing, to earn a living, and freedom of movement. The sharp changes Israel made to the map of the West Bank make a viable Palestinian state impossible as part of the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination.

    The settlers, on the other hand, benefit from all rights given to citizens of Israel who live inside the Green Line, and in some instances, even additional rights. The great effort Israel has expended in the settlement enterprise – financially, legally, and bureaucratically – has turned the settlements into civilian enclaves within an area under military rule and has given the settlers a preferred status. To perpetuate this unlawful situation, Israel has continuously violated the Palestinians’ human rights.

    Especially conspicuous is Israel’s manipulative use of the law to create a semblance of legality for the settlement enterprise. So long as Jordanian law assisted Israel in advancing its goals, it seized the argument that international law requires that an occupying state apply the law in effect in the territory prior to occupation, thus construing international law in a cynical and tendentious way. When Jordanian law was unfavorable for Israel, Israel did not hesitate to revoke it though military legislation and develop new rules to meet its ends. In doing so, Israel tramples on international agreements to which it is party – agreements which are intended to reduce human rights violations and protect people under occupation.

    Because the very establishment of the settlements is illegal, and in light of the human rights violations resulting from the existence of the settlements, B’Tselem demands that Israel evacuate the settlements. The action must be done in a way that respects the settlers’ human rights, including the payment of compensation.

    Clearly, evacuation of the settlements will be complex and will take time; however there are intermediate steps that can be taken immediately so as to reduce, to the extent possible, human rights violations and breaches of international law. For example, the government should cease new construction in the settlements – both the building of new settlements and the expansion of existing settlements. It must also freeze the planning and building of new bypass roads and must cease expropriating and seizing land intended for the bypass roads. The government must return to Palestinian villages all the non-built-up land that was placed within the municipal jurisdiction of the settlements and the regional councils, eliminate the planning boards in the settlements, and, as a result thereof, revoke the power of the local authorities to draw up outline plans and grant building permits. Also, the government must cease the granting of incentives to encourage Israeli citizens to move to settlements and must make resources available to encourage settlers to move inside Israel’s borders.

  • Mike

    (Jerusalem) – Israel’s repeated firing of white phosphorus shells over densely populated areas of Gaza during its recent military campaign was indiscriminate and is evidence of war crimes, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today.

    The 71-page report, “Rain of Fire: Israel’s Unlawful Use of White Phosphorus in Gaza,” provides witness accounts of the devastating effects that white phosphorus munitions had on civilians and civilian property in Gaza. Human Rights Watch researchers in Gaza immediately after hostilities ended found spent shells, canister liners, and dozens of burnt felt wedges containing white phosphorus on city streets, apartment roofs, residential courtyards, and at a United Nations school. The report also presents ballistics evidence, photographs, and satellite imagery, as well as documents from the Israeli military and government.

    Militaries use white phosphorus primarily to obscure their operations on the ground by creating thick smoke. It can also be used as an incendiary weapon.

    “In Gaza, the Israeli military didn’t just use white phosphorus in open areas as a screen for its troops,” said Fred Abrahams, senior emergencies researcher at Human Rights Watch and co-author of the report. “It fired white phosphorus repeatedly over densely populated areas, even when its troops weren’t in the area and safer smoke shells were available. As a result, civilians needlessly suffered and died.”

    The report documents a pattern or policy of white phosphorus use that Human Rights Watch says must have required the approval of senior military officers.

    “For the needless civilian deaths caused by white phosphorus, senior commanders should be held to account,” Abrahams said.

    On February 1, Human Rights Watch submitted detailed questions to the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) about its white phosphorus use in Gaza. The IDF did not provide responses, citing an internal inquiry being conducted by the Southern Command.

    In the recent Gaza operations, Israeli forces frequently air-burst white phosphorus in 155mm artillery shells in and near populated areas. Each air-burst shell spreads 116 burning white phosphorus wedges in a radius extending up to 125 meters from the blast point. White phosphorus ignites and burns on contact with oxygen, and continues burning at up to 1500 degrees Fahrenheit (816 degrees Celsius) until nothing is left or the oxygen supply is cut. When white phosphorus comes into contact with skin it creates intense and persistent burns.

    When used properly in open areas, white phosphorus munitions are not illegal, but the Human Rights Watch report concludes that the IDF repeatedly exploded it unlawfully over populated neighborhoods, killing and wounding civilians and damaging civilian structures, including a school, a market, a humanitarian aid warehouse, and a hospital.

    Israel at first denied it was using white phosphorus in Gaza but, facing mounting evidence to the contrary, said that it was using all weapons in compliance with international law. Later it announced an internal investigation into possible improper white phosphorus use.

    “Past IDF investigations into allegations of wrongdoing suggest that this inquiry will be neither thorough nor impartial,” Abrahams said. “That’s why an international investigation is required into serious laws of war violations by all parties.”

    The IDF knew that white phosphorus poses life-threatening dangers to civilians, Human Rights Watch said. A medical report prepared during the recent hostilities by the Israeli ministry of health said that white phosphorus “can cause serious injury and death when it comes into contact with the skin, is inhaled or is swallowed.” Burns on less than 10 percent of the body can be fatal because of damage to the liver, kidneys, and heart, the ministry report says. Infection is common and the body’s absorption of the chemical can cause serious damage to internal organs, as well as death.

    If the IDF intended to use white phosphorus as a smokescreen for its forces, it had a readily available non-lethal alternative to white phosphorus – smoke shells produced by an Israeli company, Human Rights Watch concluded.

    All of the white phosphorus shells that Human Rights Watch found were manufactured in the United States in 1989 by Thiokol Aerospace, which was running the Louisiana Army Ammunition Plant at the time. On January 4, Reuters photographed IDF artillery units handling projectiles whose markings indicate that they were produced in the United States at the Pine Bluff Arsenal in September 1991.

    To explain the high number of civilian casualties in Gaza, Israeli officials have repeatedly blamed Hamas for using civilians as “human shields” and for fighting from civilian sites. In the cases documented in the report, Human Rights Watch found no evidence of Hamas using human shields in the vicinity at the time of the attacks. In some areas Palestinian fighters appear to have been present, but this does not justify the indiscriminate use of white phosphorus in a populated area.

    Human Rights Watch said that for multiple reasons it concluded that the IDF had deliberately or recklessly used white phosphorus munitions in violation of the laws of war. First, the repeated use of air-burst white phosphorus in populated areas until the last days of the operation reveals a pattern or policy of conduct rather than incidental or accidental usage. Second, the IDF was well aware of the effects of white phosphorus and the dangers it poses to civilians. Third, the IDF failed to use safer available alternatives for smokescreens.

    The laws of war obligate states to investigate impartially allegations of war crimes. The evidence available demands that Israel investigate and prosecute as appropriate those who ordered or carried out unlawful attacks using white phosphorus munitions, Human Rights Watch said.

    The United States government, which supplied Israel with its white phosphorus munitions, should also conduct an investigation to determine whether Israel used it in violation of the laws of war, Human Rights Watch said.

  • Mike

    Human Rights Watch Accuses Israel of War Crimes

    By Jim Lobe

    08/02/06 “IPS” — – In systematically failing to distinguish between Hezbollah fighters and civilian population in its three-and-a-half-week-old military campaign in Lebanon, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) have committed war crimes, according to a report released by Human Rights Watch Wednesday.

    The 50-page report, “Fatal Strikes: Israel’s Indiscriminate Attacks Against Civilians in Lebanon,” detailed nearly two dozen cases of IDF attacks in which a total of 153 civilians, including 63 children, were killed in homes or motor vehicles.

    In none of the cases did HRW researchers find evidence that there was a significant enough military objective to justify the attack, given the risks to civilian lives, while, in many cases, there was no identifiable military target. In still other cases cited in the report, Israeli forces appear to have deliberately targeted civilians.

    “By consistently failing to distinguish between combatants and civilians, Israel has violated one of the most fundamental tenets of the laws of war: the duty to carry out attacks on only military targets,” according to the report.

    “The pattern of attacks during the Israeli offensive in Lebanon suggests that the failures cannot be explained or dismissed as mere accidents; the extent of the pattern and the seriousness of the consequences indicate the commission of war crimes,” it concluded.

    The report, which was based on interviews with victims and independent witnesses of attacks, as well as investigation of the sites where the attacks occurred, called for the United States to immediately suspend transfers to Israel of arms, ammunition, and other material credibly alleged to have been used in such attacks until they cease.

    In addition, it called on United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan to establish a formal commission to investigate the alleged war crimes with a view to holding accountable those responsible for their commission.

    Such a commission should also investigate Hezbollah’s rocket attacks against Israel which have been the subject of previous HRW reports. Since the onset of the latest round of fighting July 12, Hezbollah has launched some 2,000 rockets into predominantly civilian areas in Israel, killing at least 19 Israeli civilians and wounding more than 300 others. Given the inherently indiscriminate nature of the rockets, these attacks also constitute war crimes, according to the New York-based group.

    The report, whose main conclusions about Israel’s failure to discriminate between civilian and military targets echo a statement by Amnesty International two days ago, was issued just hours after HRW released the preliminary results of its investigation of the July 30 Israeli air strike on an apartment building in Qana in southern Lebanon, which was initially reported to have killed 54 people, most of them children, who had taken refuge in the basement.

    HRW, which took testimony from some of the nine survivors it identified, said that it had confirmed the deaths of 28 people, including 16 children, in the building and that 13 others remained missing and were believed to be buried in the rubble. It said that at least 22 people survived the attack and escaped the basement.

    One of the survivors, Muhammad Mahmud Shalhoub, as well as a Qana villager who helped in the rescue effort, strongly denied initial Israeli claims that any Hezbollah fighters or rocket launchers were present in or around the home when the attack took place. HRW said its own on-site investigation, which took place July 31, as well as interviews with dozens of international journalists, rescue workers and international observers who visited Qana July 30 and 31, also yielded no evidence of any Hezbollah military presence in or around the building.

    “The deaths in Qana were the predictable result of Israel’s indiscriminate bombing campaign in Lebanon,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, director of HRW’s Middle East and North Africa Division, who called for international investigation to determine what took place.

    Israel has insisted that it has tried hard to avoid civilian casualties, although the great majority of the more than 500 Lebanese who have reportedly been killed by Israeli fire have been civilians. Israel has claimed that Hezbollah’s alleged practice of shielding its fighters and arms by locating them in civilian homes or areas and firing off missiles in populated areas – allegations which HRW said are the subject of ongoing investigations – has made civilian casualties unavoidable.

    But the rights group said its own investigations of specific Israeli attacks, which included interviews with victims and witnesses, on-site visits, as well as corroboration, where available, by accounts by independent journalists and aid workers, had failed to uncover any evidence that Hezbollah was operating in or around the area during or before each attack.

    “Hezbollah fighters must not hide behind civilians – that’s an absolute – but the image that Israel has promoted of such shielding as the cause of so high a civilian death toll is wrong,” according to HRW’s executive director, Kenneth Roth. “In the many cases of civilian deaths examined by [us], the location of Hezbollah troops and arms had nothing to do with the deaths because there was no Hezbollah around.”

    He cited a July 13 attack which destroyed the home of a cleric known to be a Hezbollah sympathizer but with no record of having taken part in hostilities. The strike killed the cleric’s wife, their 10 children, the family’s Sri Lankan maid, as well as the cleric himself, according to the report.

    In a July 16 attack on a home in Aitaroun, an Israeli aircraft killed 11 members of the al-Akhrass family, including seven Canadian-Lebanese dual nationals who were vacationing in the village at the time. HRW said it interviewed three villagers independently, all of whom denied that the family had any connection to Hezbollah. Among the victims were four children under the age of eight.

    The report also assailed statements by Israeli officials and IDF commanders that only people associated with Hezbollah remain in southern Lebanon, so all are legitimate targets of attack. Israel has dropped leaflets in the region and even telephoned residents warning them that if they do not flee, they will be subject to attack.

    But the report stressed that many civilians have been unable to leave because they are sick, wounded, or lack the means, such as money or gasoline, or are providing essential services to the civilian population that remains there. Still others have said they are afraid to leave because the roads have come under attack by Israeli warplanes and artillery.

    Indeed, the report documents 27 deaths of civilians who were trying to flee the fighting by car and notes that the actual number of killings is “surely higher.” In addition, the report cites air strikes against three clearly marked humanitarian aid vehicles.

    “The pattern of attacks shows the Israeli military’s disturbing disregard for the lives of Lebanese civilians,” said Roth. “Israeli warnings of imminent attacks do not turn civilians into military targets,” he added, noting that, according to the IDF’s logic, “Palestinian militant groups might ‘warn’ Israeli settlers to leave their settlements and then feel justified in attacking those who remained.”

    Amnesty accused Israel of trying to convert southern Lebanon into a “free-fire zone,” which it said Monday was “incompatible with international humanitarian law.”

    Copyright © 2006 IPS-Inter Press Service. All rights reserved.

  • Mike

    New York, December 30, 2008 – Israel and Hamas both must respect the prohibition under the laws of war against deliberate and indiscriminate attacks on civilians, Human Rights Watch said today. Human Rights Watch expressed grave concern about Israeli bombings in Gaza that caused civilian deaths and Palestinian rocket attacks on Israeli civilian areas in violation of international law.

    Rocket attacks on Israeli towns by Hamas and other Palestinian armed groups that do not discriminate between civilians and military targets violate the laws of war, while a rising number of the hundreds of Israeli bombings in Gaza since December 27, 2008, appear to be unlawful attacks causing civilian casualties. Additionally, Israel’s severe limitations on the movement of non-military goods and people into and out of Gaza, including fuel and medical supplies, constitutes collective punishment, also in violation of the laws of war.

    “Firing rockets into civilian areas with the intent to harm and terrorize Israelis has no justification whatsoever, regardless of Israel’s actions in Gaza,” said Joe Stork, deputy director of Human Rights Watch’s Middle East and North Africa division. “At the same time, Israel should not target individuals and institutions in Gaza solely because they are part of the Hamas-run political authority, including ordinary police. Only attacks on military targets are permissible, and only in a manner that minimizes civilian casualties.”

    Human Rights Watch investigated three Israeli attacks that raise particular concern about Israel’s targeting decisions and require independent and impartial inquiries to determine whether the attacks violated the laws of war. In three incidents detailed below, 18 civilians died, among them at least seven children.

    On Saturday, December 27, the first day of Israel’s aerial attacks, witnesses told Human Rights Watch that shortly after 1 p.m. an Israeli air-to-ground missile struck a group of students leaving the Gaza Training College, adjacent to the headquarters of the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) in downtown Gaza City. The students were waiting to board buses to transport them to their homes in Khan Yunis and Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip. The strike killed eight students, ages 18 to 20, and wounded 19 others.

    A UNRWA security guard stationed at the college entrance told Human Rights Watch that he used his UN radio to call for medical help. He said the attack also killed two other civilians, Hisham al-Rayes, 28, and his brother Alam, 26, whose family ran a small shop opposite the college entrance. The guard said that the only potential target nearby was the Gaza governorate building, which deals with civil matters, about 150 meters away from where the missile struck. Another UNRWA security guard who also witnessed the attack told Human Rights Watch: “There wasn’t anybody else around – no police, army, or Hamas.”

    The second incident occurred shortly before midnight on Sunday, December 28, when Israeli warplanes fired one or more missiles at the Imad Aqil mosque in Jabalya, a densely populated refugee camp in the northern Gaza Strip. The attack killed five of Anwar Balousha’s daughters who were sleeping in a bedroom of their nearby house: Jawaher, 4; Dina, 8; Samar, 12; Ikram, 14; and Tahrir, 18. “We were asleep and we woke to the sound of bombing and the rubble falling on the house and on our heads,” Anwar Balousha told Human Rights Watch. The Balousha’s three-room house is just across a small street from the mosque.

    The two-story Imad Aqil mosque, named after a deceased Hamas member, is regarded by Palestinians in the area as a “Hamas mosque” – that is, a place where the group’s supporters gather for political meetings or to assemble for demonstrations, and where death notices of Hamas members are posted. Mosques are presumptively civilian objects and their use for political activities does not change that. Human Rights Watch said that the attack on Imad Aql mosque would be lawful only if Israel could demonstrate that it was being used to store weapons and ammunition or served some other military purpose. Even if that were the case, Israel still had an obligation to take all feasible precautions to minimize harm to civilians and ensure that any likely civilian harm was not disproportionate to the expected military gain.

  • Mike

    Caterpillar Inc., the U.S.-based heavy-equipment company, should immediately suspend sales of its powerful D9 bulldozer to the Israeli army, Human Rights Watch said today. As Human Rights Watch documented in a recent report, the Israeli military uses the D9 as its primary weapon to raze Palestinian homes, destroy agriculture and shred roads in violation of the laws of war.

    “Caterpillar betrays its stated values when it sells bulldozers to Israel knowing that they are being used to illegally destroy Palestinian homes,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. “Until Israel stops these practices, Caterpillar’s continued sales will make the company complicit in human rights abuses.”

    In a letter to Caterpillar’s chief executive officer and board of directors, Human Rights Watch on October 29 called on the company to cease all sales to the Israeli military of the D9, as well as parts and maintenance services, so long as the military continues to use the bulldozer to violate international human rights and humanitarian law.

    Caterpillar’s CEO James Owens responded to Human Rights Watch in a letter dated November 12 by saying the company did “not have the practical ability or legal right to determine how our products are used after they are sold.” This head-in-the-sand approach ignores international standards on corporate social responsibility and the requirements of Caterpillar’s own code of conduct.

    Since 2003, the United Nations has begun to develop standards for corporations in the form of the U.N. Norms on the Responsibilities of Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises with Regard to Human Rights. This document states that companies should not “engage in or benefit from” violations of international human rights or humanitarian law and that companies “shall further seek to ensure that the goods and services they provide will not be used to abuse human rights.”

    Caterpillar’s own code of conduct requires it to consider the broad impact of its business. The company’s Code of Worldwide Business Conduct states that “Caterpillar accepts the responsibilities of global citizenship.” The company’s commitment to financial success, the code says, “must also take into account social, economic, political and environmental priorities.”

    Caterpillar makes the D9 to military specifications and sells the bulldozers to Israel as weapons under the U.S. Foreign Military Sales Program, a government-to-government program for selling U.S.-made defense equipment. Once exported to Israel, the bulldozers are armoured by the state-owned Israel Military Industries Ltd. Weighing roughly 64 tons, the armored D9 is more than 13 feet tall and 26 feet long with front and rear blades.

    A Human Rights Watch report released last month, “Razing Rafah,” documented the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) systematic use of the D9 bulldozer in illegal demolitions throughout the occupied Palestinian territories. The IDF has demolished over 2,500 Palestinian homes over the past four years in the Gaza Strip alone, most of them without the military necessity required by international humanitarian law.

    Nearly two-thirds of those homes were in Rafah, a town and refugee camp on Gaza’s southern border with Egypt. The Israeli military has used the Caterpillar bulldozer to raze the homes of more than 10 percent of the population in Rafah. The government plan to expand a “buffer zone” along the border would entail the destruction of hundreds more homes. In May, the IDF destroyed more than 50 percent of Rafah’s roads and damaged more than 40 miles of water and sewage pipes with a blade on the bulldozer’s back known as “the ripper.”

    “We found no legal justification for the senseless destruction of infrastructure essential to the health of the civilian population,” Whitson said.

    The IDF claims the destruction is militarily necessary to block smugglers’ tunnels from Egypt and to protect its forces, which regularly come under fire from Palestinian armed groups. Human Rights Watch found that the IDF has failed to use well-established methods of tunnel detection and destruction—like seismic sensors, electromagnetic induction and ground-penetrating radar—which would obviate the need for home demolitions. In terms of protecting its soldiers, the IDF completed construction of an 8-meter-high metal wall in 2003 but despite this extra protection, the rate of home demolitions in Rafah tripled in comparison with the previous two years.

    A 23-year-old American activist, Rachel Corrie, was run over and killed last year by an armored D9 when she was trying to block the bulldozer from destroying a Rafah home. At least three Palestinians have been killed by the bulldozer and falling debris in the last two years because they could not flee their homes in time.

    In April, a group of Caterpillar shareholders presented a resolution at the annual shareholder meeting that called on the company to investigate whether bulldozer sales to the Israeli military violated Caterpillar’s code of conduct. Jewish Voice for Peace, the largest grassroots Jewish peace group in the United States, announced today that it had resubmitted the resolution for the 2005 shareholders meeting.

    The following organizations are active in the campaign to stop Caterpillar sales of its D9 bulldozer to the Israeli army:

    The U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation
    http://www.endtheoccupation.org/

    hi nora/r.m
    the only reason i responded to your blatantly spin is because it is. u cannot white wash what is going on. so i will post information to inform others as well.

  • Mike

    u or r.m. dont like it than to bad

  • R.M.

    your footage shows nothing ….
    .just the ordinary BBC bias and propaganda against Israel . No one is surprised ..Who can trust the BBC on anything they say around the world since they show definite proof of bias against Israel again and again and again ….Why won’t they publish the Balen report?
    WBUR shame on you for not questioning it either ……

    ..Proof of United Nation involvement in helping Arabs against Israel.Can we really trust the UN?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sRmYYSp0-B8&search=Hezbollah%20Media

  • Toby

    Mike you are obsessed with Israel and Jews. This thread has turned into a race to see who can post the most posts and not about the truth of the issues.

    Your posts referencing NGO’s mean nothing since they are for the most part leftist twats who hate Israel.

    This is what happened at Durban one when HRW as well as AI went along with the scurrilous campaign to brand Israel a Nazi like State.

    This is defamation pure and simple and it’s the reason why Durban 2 is such a miserable failure.

  • Toby

    Khaled Abu Toameh

    “On Campus: The Pro-Palestinians’ Real Agenda

    During a recent visit to several university campuses in the U.S., I discovered that there is more sympathy for Hamas there than there is in Ramallah.

    Listening to some students and professors on these campuses, for a moment I thought I was sitting opposite a Hamas spokesman or a would-be-suicide bomber.

    I was told, for instance, that Israel has no right to exist, that Israel’s “apartheid system” is worse than the one that existed in South Africa and that Operation Cast Lead was launched only because Hamas was beginning to show signs that it was interested in making peace and not because of the rockets that the Islamic movement was launching at Israeli communities.

    I was also told that top Fatah operative Marwan Barghouti, who is serving five life terms in prison for masterminding terror attacks against Israeli civilians, was thrown behind bars simply because he was trying to promote peace between Israelis and Palestinians.

    Furthermore, I was told that all the talk about financial corruption in the Palestinian Authority was “Zionist propaganda” and that Yasser Arafat had done wonderful things for his people, including the establishment of schools, hospitals and universities.

    The good news is that these remarks were made only by a minority of people on the campuses who describe themselves as “pro-Palestinian,” although the overwhelming majority of them are not Palestinians or even Arabs or Muslims.

    The bad news is that these groups of hard-line activists/thugs are trying to intimidate anyone who dares to say something that they don’t like to hear.

    When the self-designated “pro-Palestinian” lobbyists are unable to challenge the facts presented by a speaker, they resort to verbal abuse.

    On one campus, for example, I was condemned as an “idiot” because I said that a majority of Palestinians voted for Hamas in the January 2006 election because they were fed up with financial corruption in the Palestinian Authority.

    On another campus, I was dubbed as a “mouthpiece for the Zionists” because I said that Israel has a free media. There was another campus where someone told me that I was a ‘liar” because I said that Barghouti was sentenced to five life terms because of his role in terrorism.

    And then there was the campus (in Chicago) where I was “greeted” with swastikas that were painted over posters promoting my talk. The perpetrators, of course, never showed up at my event because they would not be able to challenge someone who has been working in the field for nearly 30 years.

    What struck me more than anything else was the fact that many of the people I met on the campuses supported Hamas and believed that it had the right to “resist the occupation” even if that meant blowing up children and women on a bus in downtown Jerusalem.

    I never imagined that I would need police protection while speaking at a university in the U.S. I have been on many Palestinian campuses in the West Bank and Gaza Strip and I cannot recall one case where I felt intimidated or where someone shouted abuse at me.

    Ironically, many of the Arabs and Muslims I met on the campuses were much more understanding and even welcomed my “even-handed analysis” of the Israeli-Arab conflict. After all, the views I voiced were not much different than those made by the leaderships both in Israel and the Palestinian Authority. These views include support for the two-state solution and the idea of coexistence between Jews and Arabs in this part of the world.

    The so-called pro-Palestinian “junta” on the campuses has nothing to offer other than hatred and de-legitimization of Israel. If these folks really cared about the Palestinians, they would be campaigning for good government and for the promotion of values of democracy and freedom in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

    Their hatred for Israel and what it stands for has blinded them to a point where they no longer care about the real interests of the Palestinians, namely the need to end the anarchy and lawlessness, and to dismantle all the armed gangs that are responsible for the death of hundreds of innocent Palestinians over the past few years.

    The majority of these activists openly admit that they have never visited Israel or the Palestinian territories. They don’t know -and don’t want to know – that Jews and Arabs here are still doing business together and studying together and meeting with each other on a daily basis because they are destined to live together in this part of the world. They don’t want to hear that despite all the problems life continues and that ordinary Arab and Jewish parents who wake up in the morning just want to send their children to school and go to work before returning home safely and happily.

    What is happening on the U.S. campuses is not about supporting the Palestinians as much as it is about promoting hatred for the Jewish state. It is not really about ending the “occupation” as much as it is about ending the existence of Israel.

    Many of the Palestinian Authority and Hamas officials I talk to in the context of my work as a journalist sound much more pragmatic than most of the anti-Israel, “pro-Palestinian” folks on the campuses.

    Over the past 15 years, much has been written and said about the fact that Palestinian school textbooks don’t promote peace and coexistence and that the Palestinian media often publishes anti-Israel material.

    While this may be true, there is no ignoring the fact that the anti-Israel campaign on U.S. campuses is not less dangerous. What is happening on these campuses is not in the frame of freedom of speech. Instead, it is the freedom to disseminate hatred and violence. As such, we should not be surprised if the next generation of jihadists comes not from the Gaza Strip or the mountains and mosques of Pakistan and Afghanistan, but from university campuses across the U.S.”

    http://www.hudsonny.org/2009/03/on-campus-the-pro-palestinians-real-agenda.php

  • Mike

    Hi tob, calling u.s. college students terrorist is or potential terrorist is beyond words.

    again from what i seen for u and r.m. and nora, as u the more civil of the bunch that any criticism of israel is anti-semite and any jew that cricize israel is a self-hating jew. come on that like saying every person who was against the war in iraq are pro-terrorist and anti-American.

    u neglect the basis what they are doing as wrong, at least in the u.s. we do apologizes for some of our questionable actions around the world and to other races. But this does not happen in israel, any dissent is seen as evil, and anti-semite.

    My point from the begining is that what the state of israel is doing is wrong, yes they treat arab jews as second class citizens, they is documented evidences to show this. these arabs in israel are not blowing stuff up but voting and trying to work within the law to be equal rights.

    U cannot denie the war crime that israel have committed along with human rights abuse. which is also documented and record.

    Yet this is not reported in u.s. news which sounds odd and civilian in gaza are demonizes as all being hamas and its there own fault.

    I think that so many people who realize what has been going on cant grasp how for a group who suffered is now doing the same thing to others.

    I like many others would have more faith in the israel government if they stop taking land from the Palestinian and let international peace-keepers get involved. But they dont.

    They have twisted the truth as previous poster noted.
    I can easiy find article that counter your posting that pro-Palestinian equal pro-terrorist.

    But what i do see from u and some other poster is a hatred for muslims and anyone that question what israel is doing. and because other countries have crappy government israel can as well.

    Peace will not occur while israel treats the Palestinian with no respect and continues to take land. even after israel controls 80 percent of there land there were still willing to make concessions,yet for this to happen israel needs to stop grabbing land.ease on the blockade.

  • Mike

    there is a comic who says it all. (lewis black) yes jewish,

    He said this about our prior administration and same goes for the israel administration as well. where he states the administration will walk up in front of u and take a big crap and look at u when u question it, they than said no i didnt and deny they did, than u show the evidence they still deny it and than say you lie. Like Israel is currently doing as such.

    I must question that one thinks israel has done no wrong even in the face of some much evidences.

    very odd indeed.

    n Israeli civil rights group has said racism against Arab citizens of Israel has risen sharply in the past year.

    In a report, the Association for Civil Rights in Israel said expression of anti-Arab views had doubled, and racist incidents had increased by 26%.

    Christian or Muslim Arab citizens of Israel make up 20% of the population.

    But the civil rights quoted polls suggesting half of Jewish Israelis do not believe Arab citizens of Israel should have equal rights.

    About the same amount said they wanted the government to encourage Arab emigration from Israel.

    In another poll, almost 75% of Jewish youths said Arabs were less intelligent and less clean than Jews.

    ‘Anti-Arab policies’

    A prominent Israeli Arab politician, Mohammed Barakeh, said the poll results were the natural outcome of what he called the anti-Arab policies of successive Israeli governments.

    We live in a democratic regime whose foundations are constantly weakening
    Sami Michael
    Association for Civil Rights in Israel

    Anxiety over ‘enemy within’

    Commenting on the findings of the report, the association’s president Sami Michael warned: “We live in a democratic regime whose foundations are constantly weakening.”

    Official government spokesman Mark Regev responded that the Israeli government was “committed to fighting racism whenever it raises it ugly head and is committed to full equality to all Israeli citizens, irrespective of ethnicity, creed or background, as defined by our declaration of independence”.

    Israel’s Construction and Housing Minister Zeev Boim said the rights group’s report was biased and without credibility.

    Occupied territories

    Part of the group’s annual report is dedicated to the situation in Gaza and the West Bank.

    The report says: “Most of the human rights violations in the occupied territories are by-products of the establishment of settlements and outposts.”

    Restrictions on the movement of Palestinians designed to allow settlers “free and secure movement”, have virtually split the West Bank into six separate parts, the report says.

    The organisation says that the West Bank barrier “does not separate Palestinians from Israelis, but Palestinians from other Palestinians”.

    The report also asserts that despite its withdrawal from Gaza in 2005, Israel retains “moral and legal responsibility” for the Palestinians there because Israel controls access to the coastal territory.

  • Mike
  • Mike

    ‘Marriage to an Arab is national treason’

    Recent poll reveals steep rise in racist views against Arabs in Israel; many participants feel hatred, fear when overhearing Arabic, 75 percent don’t approve of shared apartment buildings
    Roee Nahmias

    Over half of the Jewish population in Israel believes the marriage of a Jewish woman to an Arab man is equal to national treason, according to a recent survey by the Geocartography Institute.

    The survey, which was conducted for the Center Against Racism, also found that over 75 percent of participants did not approve of apartment buildings being shared between Arabs and Jews. Sixty percent of participants said they would not allow an Arab to visit their home.

    Five hundred Jewish men and women participated in the poll, which was published Tuesday.

    According to the survey, racism against Arabs in Israel has seen a sharp rise since a similar survey was conducted two years ago.

    In 2006, 247 racist acts against Arabs were reported, as opposed to 225 one year prior.

    About 40 percent of participants agreed that “Arabs should have their right to vote for Knesset revoked”. The number was 55 percent lower in the previous survey. Also, over half of the participants agreed that Israel should encourage its Arab citizens to immigrate from the country.

    Over half of the participants said they would not want to work under the direct management of an Arab, and 55 percent said “Arabs and Jews should be separated at entertainment sites”.

    ‘Arab culture inferior’

    Participants were asked what they felt when they overheard someone speaking Arabic. Thirty-one percent said they felt hatred, while 50 percent said they felt fear.

    Over 56 percent of participants said they believed that Israel’s Arab citizens posed both a security and a demographic threat to the country.

    When asked what they thought of Arab culture, over 37 percent replied, “The Arab culture is inferior.”

    “The Center Against Racism has set itself a goal to monitor all racial incidents against Arab citizens, and to fight racism as much as possible under the law through public action,” the center’s annual report said.

    Bachar Ouda, the center’s director, said the survey’s findings were worrisome, and urged the government to intervene in the situation.

    “We call on the education minister to take the gloves off and deal with the issue seriously, because it is dangerous to coexistence. We call on the state prosecutions office, and the attorney general to take action,” Ouda said.

    http://www.ynetnews.com/Ext/Comp/ArticleLayout/CdaArticlePrintPreview/1,2506,L-3381978,00.html

  • Toby

    “Recent poll reveals steep rise in racist views against Arabs in Israel; many participants feel hatred, fear when overhearing Arabic, 75 percent don’t approve of shared apartment buildings”
    Roee Nahmias

    Give it up, Mike your obsessive vilification of Israel doesn’t stand the test of truth.

    The article you linked to was printed in Israel and is part of the Israeli project of self criticism

    How many Arabs or Muslims are willing to marry Jews, Mike?

    How many Palestinians?

    The difference is that you will not find any self critical article about this in an Arab paper.

    If there is one give us a link.

    Your one sidedness is pathetic, Mike. Too bad hardly anyone is reading this thread anymore. Those that do know what an obsessive Jew hater you are.

  • Toby

    Here is a Video that shows the kinds of vilifications to which Israel is being subjected.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X6p4QouJx98

  • Toby

    March 28, 2009

    “Israel Disputes Soldiers’ Accounts of Gaza Abuses”

    By ETHAN BRONNER

    “JERUSALEM — Israel is pushing back against accusations of civilian abuse in its Gaza war, asserting that the overwhelming majority of its soldiers acted honorably and that the account of a killing of a woman and her two children appears to be an urban myth spread by troops who did not witness it.

    Officers are stepping forward, some at the urging of the top command, others on their own, offering numerous accounts of having held their fire out of concern for civilians, helping Palestinians in need and punishing improper soldier behavior.

    “I’m not saying that nothing bad happened,” Bentzi Gruber, a colonel in the reserves and deputy commander of the armored division, said in an interview. “I heard about cases where people shot where they shouldn’t have shot and destroyed houses where they shouldn’t have destroyed houses. But the proportion and effort and directions we gave to our soldiers were entirely in the opposite direction.”

    The accusations caused a furor here and abroad because they came on top of others that the civilian death toll was high and that soldiers took an unusually aggressive approach in Gaza.

    The accounts that have received the most attention came from a taped conversation of Gaza veterans at a pre-military course where soldiers told of a sniper killing a woman and her two children walking in a no-go zone and another of an elderly woman shot dead for approaching a commandeered house.

    The army’s advocate general has opened an investigation and has not yet issued a report. But officers familiar with the investigation say that those who spoke of the killing of the mother and children did not witness it and that it almost certainly did not occur. Warning shots were fired near the family but not at them, the officers said, and rumor spread among the troops of an improper shooting.

    The second killing may also not have occurred, they said, although a similar event was recounted by Col. Herzl Halevy in January in Yediot Aharonot newspaper.

    “We saw a woman coming toward us,” he said then. “We shouted at her. We warned her a number of times not to get closer. We made hand motions. She did not stop. We shot her. When we examined her body we did not find a bomb belt.”

    Israeli commanders defend such actions because they say they confronted armed women in Gaza as well as Hamas gunmen dressed as women and in other guises, like doctors.

    “We had a woman run at us with a grenade in one hand and the Koran in the other,” Brig. Gen. Eli Shermeister, head of the military’s education corps, said in an interview in which he displayed ethics kits distributed to all commanders. “What we know till now is that there was no systematic moral failure. There were not more than a few — a very few — events still being investigated.”

    Col. Roi Elkabets, commander of an armored brigade told of occasions where fire was held. His troops saw “a woman, about 60 years old, walking with a white flag and six to eight children behind her and behind them was a Hamas fighter with his gun. We did not shoot him.”

    Almost everything about the Gaza operation has caused controversy — how many Palestinians were killed and what percentage were civilians, whether the rise in the number of religious Israeli soldiers has led to zealotry, and whether the use of enormous military force was a legitimate response to years of Hamas rocket fire on Israeli civilians.

    The dispute is a proxy for a debate — both here and abroad — over whether Israel should shift its policy toward the Palestinians and whether Hamas should be seen more as a resistance movement or as a tool of Iranian ambition and terror.

    Those who wish to press for an end to the occupation and settlement of the West Bank and the boycott of Gaza so as to create a Palestinian state — either out of sympathy with Israel or contempt for it — have focused on the accounts of abuses. Those who think such moves would endanger Israel have dismissed them as a blood libel.

    The debate began within hours of Israel’s attack in late December and continues daily. This week, Human Rights Watch issued a report citing six cases of improper use of white phosphorus by Israel and calling them evidence of war crimes. Israel has not completed its own study.

    On Thursday, the military issued its first casualty count, saying 1,166 people were killed, of them 295 noncombatants, 709 that it called Hamas terror operatives and 162 men whose affiliations remained unidentified.

    The Palestinian Center for Human Rights in Gaza says that the number of dead is 1,417, of whom 926 were civilians and 236 combatants.

    Both the military and the center have lists of names. The Israelis include some 250 policemen under “Hamas terror operatives.” The Palestinian center considers them noncombatants. The Israeli military argues that about 400 people die from natural causes in Gaza every month, a possible cause for the gap in the two counts.

    Some soldiers have complained about the role of military rabbis and religious soldiers, saying that they have taken to their roles with the fervor of holy warriors, leading to more violence.

    Stuart Cohen, a political scientist at Bar Ilan University who is religiously observant, says that the army has indeed grown more violent toward civilians in the past 25 years, partly because the Palestinians have. But he says it has nothing to do with the increase of religious soldiers. For 12 years he has been studying the correspondence between religious soldiers and rabbis on combat morality and overwhelmingly the rabbis have urged restraint. While he can not measure how that advice has been put into practice, he suspects it has had a real effect. And other religious soldiers said their behavior in Gaza was especially respectful.

    “When we entered houses, we actually cleaned up the place,” said Yishai Goldflam, 32, a religiously-observant film student in Jerusalem whose open letter to the Palestinian owners of the house he occupied for some days was published in Maariv newspaper. “There are always idiots who do immoral things. But they don’t represent the majority. I remember once when a soldier wanted to take a Coke from a store and he was stopped by his fellow soldiers because it was the wrong thing to do.”

    Yaron Ezrahi, a political theorist who lectures military commanders, said they reject the notion of willful abuse by their troops. But the commanders say that more civilians lost their lives than should have and attribute it to two factors: faulty intelligence that led to attacking the wrong houses, and a failure, after issuing a warning to leave, to provide a safe escape route.

    Israel lost only a handful of men and almost no equipment, which many attribute to its overwhelming use of force.

    But the top commanders say their consciences are clean.

    “The question is, did we do all we could do to avoid hitting civilians?” General Shermeister, the chief education officer said. “My answer is yes.””

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/28/world/middleeast/28israel.html?_r=1&hp=&pagewanted=print

  • Mike

    Again u write off what u wish not to hear, i posted so much to so how much your full of crap and u cannot white-wash what is happening and has happen in the last 60 years to arabs living in those areas. to note Egypt and Jordan are no better.

    Jews are legally forbidden to intermarry in Israel, unless one spouse converts to the other partner’s religion. If neither spouse will convert, the engaged interfaith couple must travel abroad to wed–ironically, Israel gives legal recognition to intermarriages taking place abroad.

    By the way, there is no half Jewish. There are only Jewish and Non-Jewish.
    Source(s):
    http://www.interfaithfamily.com/arts_and

    When in the world has any government been right 100 percent of the time? answer none but from your posting it seemed that israel is the only one.

    I along with about most of the world all know both sides have commited wrong and wish for peace, yet one side unfairly uses past wrongs to commit new ones,

    committing the same crimes its once had done to them and laws that were set in place it now violates. It is u my arab hating bigot who does not understand. U act as if israel has done no wrong and anyone saying otherwise is wrong.

    It is u who is a arab hater along with hating anyone who objects to your twisted point of view.U posted a article of a guy calling college students future terrorist.U are truly low

    , along with r.m. nora, and sabato. it is you who denies what has happen in gaza, deny human rights abuses. and your only reasoning is everyone else is a lier or arabs bad, so we can.

    I wish people did see this thread to see why we need the international community to stop israel war crimes. since arab hating, immoral people as yourself can be exposed by your often racist,smearful,deceitful spin on what has been happening i have yet once here u say anything israel has done is wrong, reasoning because you agree with it fully, u agree to innocents being killed as long is it is not jewish, your sick and should get some help.

    Just as hamas is a terrorist organization so is israel both disregard civilian lifes and history goes back to israel promoting them as a counter to the PLO

    The actions of israel does not win over other arabs, christians or the world why? u ask because most are wrong to anyone that does not have a islam phobia can see.

    Im not defending how arabs treated jews in the past i think its wrong as well and should change. But u who seem not to have compassion for human life that is non jewish life cannot see the holes in your argument.

    you vilify arabs being all bad, and evil, maybe in your twisted mind it is true, but just like anywhere in the world there is good and evil people of course this concept would not sink into your head. The state of israel policies have shown the later, just like pre-war iraq, and others places around the world yet most countries learn from their mistakes.

    so your guise of defending israel cruelty as just will not work, far to much evidences to say the opposite. As well as lumping in every arab as a terrorist so if u kill them its okay will not work either. you racist bigot.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=537cq4s9Ctk

  • Toby

    Fetid Mike is baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaack!

    More Jew hating nonsense:

    “Im not defending how arabs treated jews in the past i think its wrong as well and should change. But u…..”

    There is always a but with Mike when it comes to Jews.

    Arabs murdering Jews is not in the past Mike. It’s the present and if Israel didn’t exist to protect its citizens there would be even more murders of Jews then in the past.

  • Toby

    Here is a video of Arabs killing Arabs:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f1EEpvXA23E

    Hamas attacks civilians in Gaza Strip

    BUT mike doesn’t care about that. He only cares about Jews defending themselves.

    Again see how people like mike demonize Jews:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X6p4QouJx98

  • Toby

    Present attitudes of Muslims towards jews:

    “Egyptian cleric: The Jews “are enemies not because they occupied Palestine. They would have been enemies even if they did not occupy a thing.”

    They keep telling us that it isn’t about “stolen land,” and that land concessions and even the creation of a Palestinian state will not end the conflict. And we keep refusing to believe it.

    “Egyptian Cleric Muhammad Hussein Ya’qoub: The Jews Are the Enemies of Muslims Regardless of the Occupation of Palestine,” from MEMRI TV, January 17 (just posted), with thanks to Sr. Soph:

    Following are excerpts from a speech delivered by Egyptian cleric Muhammad Hussein Ya’qoub, which aired on Al-Rahma TV on January 17, 2009.

    Muhammad Hussein Ya’qoub: If the Jews left Palestine to us, would we start loving them? Of course not. We will never love them. Absolutely not. The Jews are infidels – not because I say so, and not because they are killing Muslims, but because Allah said: “The Jews say that Uzair is the son of Allah, and the Christians say that Christ is the son of Allah. These are the words from their mouths. They imitate the sayings of the disbelievers before. May Allah fight them. How deluded they are.” It is Allah who said that they are infidels….”

    http://www.jihadwatch.org/archives/025130.php#respond

  • Toby

    This is what Israel is facing in the near future:

    “Military clash with Iran

    Tehran aims to create Gaza missile base that can cover whole of central Israel
    Alex Fishman

    Iran is in fact forcing a direct military confrontation upon Israel. We are not only talking about President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s exaggerated verbal passion or the Iranian nuclear project.

    Thus far, Iran conducted a war of attrition against Israel via its emissaries: Hizbullah, Hamas, and other Palestinian groups. At this time, the war is reaching new peaks; it will be impossible to continue ignoring them while only engaging with the emissaries.

    Based on foreign reports, the Air Force bombed about two months ago, in Sudan, a shipment of medium-range rockets with a range of 70 kilometers (roughly 40 miles,) apparently the Fajar 3 model.

    This is not a small missile. In fact, it is a missile that the Iranians are manufacturing especially for the Gaza Strip, so that it can be dismantled to several pieces and smuggled in through the Gaza tunnels. This is also the way they produced the special Grad rockets for Gaza: Disassembled models, made in Iran, and designated for smuggling.

    Making our life intolerable
    The picture is becoming clearer: The Iranians are aiming to establish a rocket base south of Israel that would cover the entire Gush Dan area in central Israel from the south. This is not paranoia.

    The “tight grip theory,” namely, clasping the State of Israel from both the north and south, turns Iran into a concrete enemy, rather than a theoretical one.

    It would be impossible to keep blaming Hizbullah and Hamas all the time, sort of like looking for the money you lost under the streetlight because it is more convenient that way.

    The Iranians are not only investing in the unconventional realm, but also in the conventional field, in order to eliminate the State of Israel or at least in order to make life here intolerable.”

    http://www.ynetnews.com/Ext/Comp/ArticleLayout/CdaArticlePrintPreview/1,2506,L-3693195,00.html

  • Mike

    why didnt u finish the sentence u took from me “But u who seem not to have compassion for human life that is non jewish life cannot see the holes in your argument is kind of deceitful of u to cut the rest off but you probably used doing such things.

    AJA=biased source, american Jewish committee and if u watched the video i posted it shows the same if not more against arabs. so your point holds no water.

    a villain does not need to be vilified cause there actions will show it as israel has in the name of protecting itself. I noted that Egypt, and jordan are just as worst as israel, and if u wish i can find many articles about israel jews saying the same about arabs. so your point is junk.

    dude your crazy, so advocating a pre attack on iran because there master plan is to somehow build missles in gaza to wipe out israel so your saying therefore israel should attack, murder, kill arabs to stop ur paranoia again this show how sick you are and some not all supporters of this view.

    Just cause u believe something to be true does not give u the right to attack and kill others because u are scared that they could possiable do something in the future but no evidence to back it up.even we in the u.s. has learn that lesson(iraq war)where we let people like u scare people into attacking.

    also to note iran has the right to build civilain nuclear technology under agreements it sign, which israel has not sign, and stole the tec from the u.s., who is still under u.n. violations, still stealing land, who has a policy of only a Jewish state.(racist)
    who will take arab land but demote them to second class citizens because they are arabs (racist)

    israel is currently living in what the 1960′s were in the u.s.very little equity, it needs to evolve to included all races, religions if it wish for peace.

    unless your agruement is because Egypt and jordan have crappy and intolerant government so can israel, than i would point out israel is not a western democracy than.

    Im done wasting time on a paranoid arab hating bigot who calls u.s. college kids future terrorist, who wants to start a war based on paronoida rather than evidences, who plays therefore one side is bad i can be equally the same or worst.

    Again this is not towards jews in israel but the israel governments policies. as stated countless times. FYI many jews in the u.s. point out the same things as stated earlier about the HR crimes israel has committed, as we speak the u.n. is looking into prosecuting government officials for war crimes.

    WE ARE ALL HUMANS FIRST THAN, CULTURE, RACE, RELIGION SECOND, REMEMBER THIS SHOWING LOVE TO YOUR NEIGHBOR BRING LOVE IN RESPONSE, SHOWING HATE TOWARDS YOUR NEIGHBOR BRINGS HATE IN RETURN U CANNOT WIN PEACE BY KILLING INNOCENTS BUT CREATE MORE ENEMIES.

    so bug off u paranoid arab hating freak, no further response will be to u since you would not understand it in the first place.

  • Mike
  • R.M.

    Ignoring facts is convenient isn’t it ? Israel has been and is scrutinized like no other country . A few days ago,I heard the BBC accuse Israel of Graffiti war crimes . I could laugh but this libel is pretty sad and dangerous . it shows to what length the BBC ,a major source organization funded by the British government and its people, is willing to go as a propaganda machine to demonize the state of Israel .
    GRAFFITI WAR CRIMES ….CAN YOU BELIEVE IT ? what will be the next war crime ?

  • R.M.

    your litle video shows what an immature brainwashed little twit you are .Its so obvious there is nothing original by what you say …….stop repeating what you hear…..one day you will be ambarassed by your stupidity …..grow up ….

  • R.M.
  • Toby

    “AJA=biased source” mike

    this is funny coming from someone who posts nothing but comments from biased sources.

    you are a malicious Jew hating twit, mike.

  • Toby

    For those who are not afraid to face the fact that the human rights, community so called has been infected with a virulent strain of antisemitism and Jew hatred which makes its claims about Israel suspect:

    “Banned UN Speech: “Human Rights Nightmare”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uhWgZu6tcZU

  • R.M.

    The so called “honorable United Nation” :

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1_niYYxEWNU

  • Toby

    “Jenin music center torched”

    “Directors believe fundamentalist elements set fire to center providing music lessons to some 80 kids from town and area

    Merav Yudilovitch Published: 03.18.09, 11:36 / Israel Culture

    A Jenin music center operated by the Ramallah-based al-Kamanjati organization was set on fire Monday night. The center’s directors said that they did not know who was behind the arson.

    The center, which ordinarily provides various music lessons for some 80 children, will be forced to shut down due to the severe damage to the structure and the musical instruments.

    Students arrive to the center from the Jenin refugee camp, the town of Jenin, and other neighboring communities.

    Scorched musical instruments at the center

    A statement to the press issued by the center defined the fire as “a crime against humanity and against the right of the Palestinian children and Palestinian society to culture and education.

    “Such acts will not deter us from continuing with our work, because music touches the soul and mind and helps them evolve, instead of materialism and walls.”

    Juliano Mer-Khamis, the founder and director of the Freedom Theater in Jenin, told Ynet: “This is part of an anti-cultural wave of arsons, from which we at the Freedom Theater also suffered.” Mer-Khamis was referring to a recent failed attempt to set the theater ablaze.

    “This feels like an assault on everything that represents culture and open thought. We at the theater received threats about a month ago, threats that were now realized at al-Kamanjati. There is a lot of tension here,” he stated.

    Burnt down class at the center

    According to Mer-Khamis, the pressure has been mounting lately due to the recent boom in cultural endeavors in the area. In about six months a first cinema house is scheduled to open in Jenin, sponsored by the German government.

    Some fundamentalist elements feel threatened by this, he said. “The Palestinian Authority is making great efforts to catch the perpetrators. I assume that they have a religious affiliation, although the imam of Jenin stands behind us.

    “But there are quite a few elements, within Fatah as well, who believe that music and theater are a distraction. We’ve reached a critical junction, which I saw coming but feared from, and we will have to deal with it,” he concluded.”

    http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3688276,00.html

  • Toby

    Is this why the music school was torched?

    “Palestinian children sing for Holocaust survivors

    Strings for Peace, youth orchestra from Jenin refugee camp, gives touching musical performance for Holocaust survivors in Israeli town Holon as part of Good Deeds Day. Zeid, one of musicians in group: Only people who have been through suffering understand each other
    Associated Press

    The Palestinian youths from the tough West Bank refugee camp stood facing the elderly Holocaust survivors Wednesday, appearing somewhat defiant in a teenage sort of way. Then they began to sing.

    The choir burst into songs for peace, bringing surprised smiles from the audience. But the event had another twist: Most of the Holocaust survivors did not know the youths were Palestinians from the West Bank, a rare sight in Israel these days. And the youths had no idea they were performing for people who lived through Nazi genocide — or even what the Holocaust was.

    Volunteering Day

    Be part of a day that is all good / Ynetnews

    Campaign launched by Ruach Tova, non-profit organization run by international businesswoman Shari Arison, aims to inspire volunteering spirit in Israelis in annual Good Deeds Day, March 25
    Full Story

    “I feel sympathy for them,” Ali Zeid, an 18-year-old keyboard player who said he was shocked by what he learned about the Holocaust, in which the Nazis killed 6 million Jews in their campaign to wipe out European Jewry.

    “Only people who have been through suffering understand each other,” said Zeid, who said his grandparents were Palestinian refugees forced to flee the northern city of Haifa during the war that followed Israel’s creation in 1948.

    The 13 musicians, aged 11 to 18, belong to “Strings of Freedom,” a modest orchestra from the hardscrabble Jenin refugee camp in the northern West Bank, the scene of a deadly 2002 battle between Palestinian militants and Israeli soldiers.

    The event, held at the Holocaust Survivors Center in this tree-lined central Israeli town, was part of “Good Deeds Day,” an annual event run by an organization connected to billionaire Shari Arison, Israel’s richest woman.

    First encounters for some
    The two-hour meeting starkly highlighted how distant Palestinians and Israelis have become after more than eight years of bloody Palestinian militant attacks and deadly Israeli military reprisals.

    Most of the Palestinian youths had not seen an Israeli civilian before — only gun-toting soldiers in military uniforms manning checkpoints, conducting arrest raids of wanted Palestinians or during army operations.

    “They don’t look like us,” said Ahed Salameh, 12, who wore a black head scarf woven with silver.

    Most of the elderly Israelis wore pants and T-shirts, with women sporting a smear of lipstick.

    “Old people look different where we come from,” Salameh said.

    Elderly Holocaust survivors listen intently to concert (Photo: AP)

    She said she was shocked to hear about the Nazi genocide against Jews. Ignorance and even denial of the Holocaust is widespread in Palestinian society.

    Amnon Beeri of the Abraham Fund, which supports coexistence between Jews and Arabs, said most of the region’s residents have “no real idea about the other.”

    The youths said their feisty conductor, Wafa Younis, 50, tried to explain to them who the elderly people were, but chaos on the bus prevented them from listening.

    The elderly audience said they assumed Arab children were from a nearby village — not from the refugee camp where 23 Israeli soldiers were killed, alongside 53 Palestinian militants and civilians, in several days of battle in April 2002.

    Some 30 elderly survivors gathered in the center’s hall as teenage boys and girls filed in 30 minutes late — delayed at an Israeli military checkpoint outside their town, they later explained.

    Some of the young women wore Muslim head scarves — but also sunglasses and school ties.

    As a host announced in Hebrew that the youths were from the Jenin refugee camp, there were gasps and muttering from the crowd. “Jenin?” one woman asked in jaw-dropped surprise.

    Younis, from the Arab village of Ara in Israel, then explained in fluent Hebrew that the youths would sing for peace, prompting the audience to burst into applause.

    “Inshallah,” said Sarah Glickman, 68, using the Arabic term for “God willing.”

    The encounter began with an Arabic song, “We sing for peace,” and was followed by two musical pieces with violins and Arabic drums, as well as an impromptu song in Hebrew by two in the audience.

    Making a ‘small difference’
    Glickman, whose family moved to the newly created Jewish state in 1949 after fleeing to Siberia to escape the Nazis, said she had no illusions the encounter would make the children understand the Holocaust. But she said it might make a “small difference.”

    “They think we are strangers, because we came from abroad,” Glickman said. “I agree: It’s their land, also. But there was no other option for us after the Holocaust.”

    Later, she tapped her feet in tune as the teenagers played a catchy Mideast drum beat. After the event, some of the elderly Israelis chatted with students and took pictures together.

    The encounter was not absent of politics. Younis dedicated a song to an Israeli soldier held captive by Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip — and also criticized Israel’s occupation of the West Bank.

    But she said the main mission of the orchestra, formed seven years ago to help Palestinian children overcome war trauma, was to bring people together.

    “I’m here to raise spirits,” Younis said. “These are poor, old people.””

    http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3688276,00.html

    People like MIke are on the side of those torrching schools in the name of “resitence.”

  • Toby

    Then there is this:

    “European and Muslim leaders to launch Web site to fight anti-Semitism
    By The Associated Press

    Prominent figures from Europe and the Muslim world will launch this week a new Web site aimed at curbing Holocaust denial. The site will include a
    history of Muslim-Jewish relations in English, French, Arabic and Farsi, the project’s organizers said.

    The initiative, called Project Aladdin, hinges on the Internet site, which is also to carry a history of the Holocaust and offer online Arabic and Farsi translations of books including Anne Frank’s Diary, the organizers said.

    Among those unveiling the project include Senegalese President Abdoulaye Wade, former French President Jacques Chirac and Abdurrahman Wahid, former president of Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim nation.

    Auschwitz survivor Simone Veil, one of France’s most influential woman
    politicians, will also speak at the event.

    Concerns about Holocaust denial captured headlines earlier this year when the Vatican lifted the excommunication of a Holocaust-denying bishop.
    Holocaust-denying comments by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad have also sparked worldwide outrage in recent years.

    Former U.S. President Bill Clinton hailed Project Aladdin, which he said in a letter has the potential to play a vital role in countering denial with facts and putting a human face on something that otherwise might seem too terrible to believe.

    The initiative, which was to be launched at UNESCO’s Paris headquarters, is partially sponsored by France’s Foundation for the Memory of the Shoah.

    Organizers said that more than 200 people, many prominent public figures from across the Muslim world, have joined the project’s so-called conscience committee. Jordan’s Prince El Hassan Ben Talal and former German chancellor Gerhard Schroeder are among the project’s sponsors, organizers said in a statement ahead of the launch.”
    http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1074419.html

    Too bad the Israel haters have taken over this site. We could have been discussing these positive developments.

  • R.M.
  • R.M.

    Here is a good man who will enlighten you a bit:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cuLbdy6FH3M&NR=1

  • R.M.

    its so much easier to critizise Israel , this is for mike for that wonderful culture he protects :

    http://crazzzynews.com/2009/02/23/the-female-face-of-shame-women-who-recurited-rape-victims-has-been-captured/

  • Toby

    Alas, good deeds among Palestinians gets punished:

    “Jenin: Orchestra shut down after playing for Shoah survivors”

    03.29.09, 14:10 / Israel News

    “Palestinian officials in a West Bank refugee camp say they have disbanded a youth orchestra after it played for Holocaust survivors in Israel. Jenin refugee camp official Adnan Hindi says the 13-member Strings of Freedom orchestra should not have played for the survivors, calling the Holocaust “a political issue.”

    Hindi added Sunday that the conductor has also been barred from entering the camp. Conductor Wafa Younis says she was not informed of the ban. The orchestra performed a goodwill concert for elderly

    survivors in the Israeli town of Holon Wednesday. (AP)”

    http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3693845,00.html

  • Toby

    Arab media anti-Jewish propaganda:

    “Those who are regularly left open-mouthed at the way in which the British media puts across an overwhelmingly Arab narrative about Israel and the Middle East, trasmitting lies and distortions as facts and reversing victim and victimiser to present Israel as the regional aggressor and the Palestinians as their targets, may well also scratch their heads at being told with monotonous regularity that ‘the Jews control the media’.

    Well now Arab Media Watch lifts a curtain to show us the real lobby at work. It boasts:

    Some 200 guests gathered at Kensington’s Royal Garden Hotel on 21 March 2009 to attend Arab Media Watch’s fifth annual fundraising dinner, and to mark its ninth anniversary. Among the guests were almost three-dozen senior journalists from the BBC, Al Jazeera English, Financial Times, Reuters, Daily Mail, Independent, Asharq Al Awsat, Al Quds Al Arabi, Al Hayat and others.

    The evening began with a welcome speech by AMW chairman Sharif Hikmat Nashashibi, who outlined the extensive work done by the organisation during and since Israel’s invasion of Gaza, including:

    - forcing the media to correct factual errors
    - meeting with editors and journalists
    - providing them with information
    - being interviewed by them or arranging interviews for them
    - getting letters and articles published
    - being quoted and cited in articles
    - publishing studies, press releases and Action Alerts
    - organising and speaking at events
    - helping university students and researchers

    ‘All this was done,’ Nashashibi reminded the audience, ‘while continuing our work on media portrayals of the entire Arab world, a huge but vital task undertaken on a budget that’s dwarfed by that of the pro-Israel lobbies.’ He added: ‘We’ve proven the sceptics wrong for the last nine years, establishing ourselves as a credible, professional, dynamic organisation with the recognition, respect and support of much of the British media, and high-level contacts in every news organisation…AMW is making a considerable and invaluable difference, and wants to continue doing so.’

    Here are some of the ‘factual errors’ that on its website AMW has tried to correct:

    The ‘myth that Hamas is out to destroy Israel
    The ‘myth that Palestinian rockets are a grave threat to Israeli civilians’
    The ‘myth that five Arab armies tried to wipe out Israel in 1948: ‘Strictly speaking, therefore, the Arab states did not launch a war against Israel, but undertook an armed intervention which was both lawful and justified.’
    On and on its goes, lie after smear after brazen lie. And now just look at how, as AMW goes on to detail, the British media fawned over these purveyors of gross and inflammatory untruths:

    Ian Black, the Guardian’s Middle East editor, was unable to speak at the dinner due to illness, but he wrote a statement of support that Nashashibi read out. ‘I’d like briefly to pay tribute to the work of AMW,’ the statement began.

    ‘For anyone in the British media writing about the Middle East or the wider Arab world, AMW – very ably run by Sharif Nashashibi – has become a force to be reckoned with. It has served notice that inaccuracy, misrepresentation, half-truths and prejudice are simply not acceptable – and has done much to monitor and combat them.’

    Black continued: ‘AMW has played an especially important role on Iraq and Palestine. Its work on the Gaza war was both combative and effective. Its letters to editors, op-ed articles and complaints about biased or misleading coverage have become part of the landscape.’

    He added: ‘To some extent AMW has filled the gap left by the failures of the Palestinians and Arab governments to state their case as effectively as they could and should’ve done. That’s especially true with regard to the Arab Peace Initiative, which surely remains the only workable basis for a just and comprehensive solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.’

    Black concluded: ‘The work of AMW is necessary, courteous and professional. I commend it to you wholeheartedly.’

    The next speaker was Barbara Serra, presenter for Al Jazeera English (formerly with the BBC, Sky News and Channel 5), whose introduction was followed by projected footage of her heated interview of Israeli government spokesman Mark Regev during the Gaza invasion.

    ‘It’s easy to forget, when one works closely with and in the Middle East, how little knowledge the general public across the world often has about the issues behind the continuing tensions, from the illegal occupation in the West Bank to the continuing expansion of settlements there,’she said.

    ‘That’s why the work of AMW is so invaluable. They don’t just fight against prejudice and distortion in the media, but also highlight inaccuracies which, if left unchecked, would only reinforce the misconceptions many hold towards the Arab world.’

    A performance by comedian Ian Stone was followed by the presentation of AMW’s annual award for excellence in journalism to world-renowned reporter, author and documentary filmmaker John Pilger, whose daughter Zoe accepted the award and read out a statement by him.

    ‘This is an honour I very much appreciate, and I send warm thanks from Australia to all of you at AMW, ‘he wrote. ‘I pay tribute tonight to AMW, and to Al Jazeera, and to all the courageous Arab journalists who have brought us the truth…’ Attendees watched clips of Pilger’s documentaries ‘Breaking the Silence: Truth and Lies in the War on Terror’ and ‘Palestine is Still the Issue.’

    A three-course dinner was then served, with Arabic music in the background, quotes from the night’s speakers projected on screen, and a raffle and auction which included five-star holidays, paintings by renowned Arab artists, and antique Arab furniture.

    Peter Oborne, political columnist at the Daily Mail and contributing editor at the Spectator, was unable to speak at the dinner because he had to travel unexpectedly to Afghanistan, but he wrote a message of support that Nashashibi read out:

    ‘The most noble purpose of journalism is to tell the truth and expose falsehood. Too often, British journalism achieves the exact opposite. It tells lies and glorifies falsehood. That’s why the work of AMW is so important. It sets out to combat the climate of deception that dominates too much of our reporting.’

    And here is more feedback from AMW’s grateful media client base:

    ‘Thank you…We did enjoy it.’ – Financial Times / Reuters

    ‘Many thanks for inviting me. I enjoyed it.’ – The Independent

    ‘I enjoyed the programme and the company of your nice guests.’ – BBC

    ‘Thank you very much for the invitation. I wish you all the success you deserve.’ – BBC

    ‘Thank you very much for the invitation. I really enjoyed the annual dinner. It was refreshing. It was, as before, perfectly organised…’ – BBC

    ‘Thank you so much for your generous invitation…The event was wonderful and the presentation was flawless…Best wishes for continued success…’ – BBC.”

    http://www.spectator.co.uk/melaniephillips/3484271/the-real-lobby-and-its-acolytes.thtml

  • R.M.

    yes its amazing how Jews are accused of controlling the media ..and everyone swallows the lie.(because they want to )..Last week I listened to the BBC accusing Israel of “Graffiti war crimes” I could not believe it …what else will they accuse Israel ? of stealing candy war crimes ?……..its unbelievable to what length they will go to demonize Israel . WBUR should be ashamed to be running the BBC …..I really don’t trust them for any news around the world because if they have false reporting against israel , then it must happen for other countries …..Meanwhile this morning I heard on NPR 10 000 little girls and women are raped each year in south Africa ….some as young as 3 months old …..and the BBC complains about Israel’s Graffiti war crimes!!!!!! ….And why won’t the BBC publish the Balen report ?

  • Teamau Linguar

    R.M, Sabato and the like, GET A LIFE, WOULD YOU?

    you people are just so typical,
    the day the Jews learn not to get over themselves, there will be peace on earth

  • Teamau Linguar

    I meant:
    The day when Jews learn to get over themselves…

  • Timmy b.

    worth checking out for both sides

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MON2HL02mec

  • R.M.

    All through history there has been lies and injustices while the “good people” closed their eyes and turned their backs ….We have the chance now through computers to show the truth ……The “Good” people can’t pretend anymore they “they did not know”or “did not see it” ……enough pallywood ..

    http://video.google.com/videosearch?hl=en&q=road%20to%20jenin&um=1&ie=UTF-8&sa=N&tab=wv#

  • R.M.

    Finkelstein is a poor excuse for a scholar.Only children would take him seriously ……

  • R.M.

    Senior Human Rights Watch Staffer Supported Violence against Jews and Israel’s Destruction

    Despite its high-minded promises, the hiring practices of Human Rights Watch virtually guarantee that it will demonize Israel. So many of the group’s senior staffers and researchers have such a documented history of extreme anti-Israel partisanship that it’s impossible to imagine them being evenhanded or accurate.

    For example, the director of the Middle East section, Sarah Leah Whitson, previously worked for the NGOs Madre and the Center for Social and Economic Rights (CESR), which have used terms such as “apartheid” and “brutality” to refer to Israel. Lucy Mair, a former Middle East researcher, had been a regular writer for the fringe anti-Israel website Electronic Intifadah, and had also worked for CESR. And the recently-hired Nadia Barhoum was a campus anti-Israel activist at University of California, Berkeley, where she was a leading member of the extremist “Students for Justice in Palestine.” Barhoum had regularly termed Israel an “apartheid state” guilty of “mass atrocities.”

    Perhaps the most anti-Israel of HRW’s staffers, however, is Joe Stork, one of the longest serving employees in the Middle East section of Human Rights Watch, formerly as Advocacy Director, and now as Deputy Dire under Sarah Leah Whitson. And it is the employment of Joe Stork which raises the most serious questions about the underlying agenda of Human Rights Watch.

    Joe Stork’s anti-Israel partisanship was evident as early as 1970, when he was “part of an informal group of seven” who launched MERIP, the Middle East Research Information Project, a spinoff from the radical Institute for Policy Studies, where Stork was a “student.” According to Stork, MERIP was founded because existing leftist critiques of “US support for Israel were inadequate.” (MERIP: The First Decade, Peter Johnson and Joe Stork, MERIP Reports, October-December 1981)

    In the same article, Stork charged that the “Zionist establishment” responded to criticism of Israel by attempting to distance “itself from the more odious stances of the Israeli government.”

    And these were just a hint of Stork’s “odious stances” on Israel and the Middle East. Consider for example his statement in 1976 that:

    … spontaneous random outbreaks of violence [by Palestinians against Jews] … make apparent the revolutionary potential of the Palestinian masses.

    Speaking positively about violence, in this case by Arabs against Jews, should have disqualified Stork from ever working at any organization supposedly devoted to human rights and nonviolence.

    Is this unfair to Joe Stork? Was his praise of violence just an isolated, uncharacteristic example? On the contrary, it is just the proverbial tip of the iceberg. The quotation is from an article by Stork based on his presentation at a conference on “Zionism and Racism” held in Saddam Hussein’s Iraq in 1976. The conference celebrated the one year anniversary of what US Ambassador Daniel Patrick Moynihan rightly termed the “infamous” UN General Assembly Resolution 3379 equating Zionism with racism.

    According to the editor of the conference volume, A. W. Kayyali:

    Zionism, as the contributors to this volume point out, is a colonial movement based on racist, supremacist and distant religious notions …

    … United Nations Resolution 3379 of 10 November 1975 … determined that Zionism is a form of racism and discrimination.

    It was on the first anniversary of that momentous resolution that the University of Baghdad invited prominent thinkers and scholars from 46 countries to participate in a seminar on ‘Zionism and Racism’ to examine Zionism in theory and practice. (Zionism, Imperialism and Racism, A.W. Kayyali, editor, Croom Helm Ltd.,1979; Stork’s praise of violence quoted above can be found on page 216)

    Even if one ignores the details of Stork’s speech, his very appearance at a conference sponsored by the brutal regime of Saddam Hussein should have disqualified him from working at Human Rights Watch, especially in any capacity relating to Israel. But there is much more about Stork’s world view that can be gleaned from this article, especially his vehement and repeated delegitimization of Israel.

    For example, he refers to the “Zionist colonization of Palestine” (p 209), the “Zionist settler-colonial enterprise” (p 214), the “infamous Balfour declaration” (p 214), and the “Zionist theft of the property and productive resources” (p 218).

    Referring to Israel’s victory in the 1967 War, Stork suggested what would be needed for the Arab states to reverse the outcome and destroy Israel:

    There were, to be sure, many contributing factors to this devastating defeat, and it would be a mistake to overlook, for example, the degree of imperialist collusion that lay behind the Israeli blitzkrieg. But the single most important cause lay with the failure of the regimes in question to mobilize their societies for the kind of protracted struggle that is critical for the liberation of Palestine. … the surplus extracted from the masses was used to construct a military machine that was completely inadequate to the task of liberating Palestine … (p 225)

    Since he is speaking of the 1967 war, which predated Israel’s presence in the West Bank and Gaza, it is clear that Stork means by the “liberation of Palestine” the destruction of Israel.

    Stork even opposes peace talks and negotiation:

    One thing that is clear from this survey, but which has been conveniently shelved by the Arab regimes today, is that the struggle against Zionism can only be won by struggling against imperialism, not by striking deals with future Kissingers. (p 232)

    But the evidence of Stork’s abiding animus towards Israel, extending even towards Arab peace negotiations with Israel, is far deeper than just one speech, vile as it may have been.

    For example, in a panel discussion organized by MERIP, held at the Institute for Policy Studies, reported in the PLO-founded Journal of Palestine Studies in 1972, and titled “How American Radicals See the Resistance Dilemma,” Stork opened the discussion by asking when:

    … the situation in the Middle East … is going to emerge again as the world’s most critical struggle of liberation versus imperialist control? … And at some point we want to talk about ways we here in this country (the United States) can best support the [Palestinian] movement. (Journal of Palestine Studies, V1 #4, Summer 1972, p 3)

    Later in the same discussion, Stork again argues against a political settlement between Israel and the PLO and asks how one could be “negated,” because such a settlement would ruin the chances for creating a revolutionary movement that would destroy Israel:

    Maybe it would be easiest to evaluate the present situation in terms of the possibility of a political settlement. Given the movement for and against some sort of political settlement, one question is: how critical is it for Palestinians to oppose it? And the second question is: how can it be done? Is it critical enough that in fact left groups should continue to subordinate themselves to the PLO leadership that met in Cairo earlier this year [1972]? The third kind of question is: what can the Palestinian left do to negate a political settlement – either under the old leadership or independently. (p 19)

    So in fact the process of combating any movement towards a political settlement might result, in the initial stage at least, in more splitting within the Palestinian movement itself … (p 25)

    In a book review in the same journal, Stork criticized Ibrahim Abu-Lughod, Palestinian editor of The Transformation of Palestine, for trying to put together a scholarly and unbiased collection, arguing in favor of anti-Israel bias:

    The editor states that his intention was to make this a collection of scholarly and unbiased essays. The authors, almost all Westerners, are scholars. However, some of them are known for their previous scholarly but anti-Zionist writings. Academic neutrality would seem to me to be a false and status-serving claim. Rather than claim this dubious virtue, the editor might well have done better to explain the bias of his authors as one based on acquaintance with the basic issues as well as with the particular facts. (What Happened to Palestine, Journal of Palestine Studies, V1 #2, Winter 1972; p 105)

    In the same review Stork refers again to “Zionist colonization” and falsely charges that:

    … the theme running throughout the period of colonization [called] for a transfer of population, and finally the systematic use of force and terror to drive out the majority of the population who refused to “trek voluntarily.”(p 106)

    Perhaps the only honest part of this review is the tag line identifying Joe Stork as “an editor of the radically-oriented MERIP Report.” There is something to be said for truth in advertising.

    In a classic case of inversion Stork, in another article, paints Jordan as attacking the PLO during the Black September crisis of 1970:

    … supplying King Hussein of Jordan during the Black September attack on the Palestinian resistance in 1970. (Merip Reports, September 1980, p 6)

    What Stork deceptively omits is that the PLO attacked and tried to overthrow King Hussein, with the help of invading Syrian army

    Twisting the facts in the aid of the most radical Palestinians is obviously a particular habit for Stork.

    In the same article Stork refers to the Camp David peace treaty between Israel and Egypt with derisive scare quotes as a ‘ “Peace” Treaty ’(p 9) and denigrates Jordan as a “classic mercenary state” (p 10), since it was apparently, even in 1980, not sufficiently anti-Israel for his tastes.

    In an article in 1986 Stork referred to Israel’s alleged “policy of provocation and brutal reprisal against Palestinians and Arabs,” and criticized what he termed “the pernicious influence of the Zionist lobby.” In the same article he returned to the Black September crisis, once again grossly distorting the facts in referring to:

    … Israel’s high-profile preparation to intervene in the September 1970 war between the Jordanian army and the Palestinian resistance. (Nuclear Shadow over the Middle East, Middle East Report, November-December 1986; p 7)

    Of course, the Jordanian Army would have had no problem defeating the “Palestinian resistance” forces based in Jordan on its own. Stork once again deceptively omits that Syrian armored columns invaded the country in support of the PLO, and threatened to topple King Hussein, thus triggering Israeli mobilization, the resulting Syrian retreat, and finally a Jordanian victory over the PLO, which had to flee to Lebanon.

    In another article in 1986 Stork once again demonized Israel, this time by charging that Israeli Prime Minister Begin had referred to Palestinians as “two-legged beasts.” This charge, while often repeated, is false. In a June 8, 1982 statement to the Israeli parliament, Begin did use the term “two-footed animals,” but he was referring not to Palestinians but to terrorists who would murder Israeli schoolchildren. Begin’s statement is available here is the relevant passage:

    The children of Israel will happily go to school and joyfully return home, just like the children in Washington, in Moscow, and in Peking, in Paris and in Rome, in Oslo, in Stockholm and in Copenhagen. The fate of… Jewish children has been different from all the children of the world throughout the generations. No more. We will defend our children. If the hand of any two-footed animal is raised against them, that hand will be cut off, and our children will grow up in joy in the homes of their parents. (emphasis added)

    Similarly, Stork attributed to the former Israeli Foreign Minister Abba Eban a seemingly imperialist statement, citing one of Eban’s books. However, neither the book, nor the UN speech the relevant chapter in the book was based upon, contains the alleged statement. According to Stork, Israel aimed to establish an imperialist relationship with neighboring Arab states:

    But only if the [Arab] boycott were lifted or rendered ineffective would it be possible for Israel to establish a classically imperialist relationship with its Arab neighbors, which Abba Eban envisioned as being “akin to the relationship between the United States and the Latin American continent.” (Zionism, Imperialism and Racism, A.W. Kayyali, ed., p218)

    Stork claims in his footnote 25 that the passage in quotes appears on page 111 of Eban’s book Voice of Israel. But checking that page reveals not even a paraphrase of the alleged statement. Further, that chapter of Eban’s book is directly based on a notable speech on a possible Arab-Israeli peace that Eban delivered to the United Nations on December 1, 1952, entitled Blue-Print for Peace. As it happens, the full speech is available and it is therefore easily searched. Just as with the book, there is not a hint in the speech of the statement Stork falsely attributes to Eban.

    Clearly, given the choice between a bogus anti-Israel quote and a fact, Joe Stork will choose the bogus quote.

    And finally, in a 1990 article Stork charged that thanks to Israel “Palestine experienced a colonial implanting, demographic as well as economic …” (Middle East Report, March-April 1990, p 5)

    Once he was at Human Rights Watch did Stork renounce or at least publicly regret the extremist views he had embraced at MERIP? Did he distance himself from the magazine? The answer is no. In 1996, while already at Human Rights Watch, Stork contributed an article to the Summer issue of Middle East Report, in which he was identified as:

    Joe Stork, former editor of this magazine, is advocacy director at Human Rights Watch/Middle East.

    From this survey of Joe Stork’s writings it is clear that he considers Israel to be illegitimate and to have no right to exist, and that he supports its destruction, with violence if necessary.

    It is simply not credible that Human Rights Watch was unaware of Joe Stork’s position on Israel. With the exception of his speech in Iraq, Stork’s writings in MERIP, which he helped found, in the Journal of Palestine Studies, and in other radical publications are easily found in any university library or in the excellent New York Public Library (Human Rights Watch is based in New York).

    The fact is that Joe Stork’s only qualifications for a job at Human Rights Watch are these writings. It is therefore inescapable that Human Rights Watch hired Stork because of, rather than in spite of, his extreme animus towards Israel. And why did Joe Stork take a job at Human Rights Watch in which he would concentrate largely on Israel? Was it to become an objective analyst while dropping his anti-Israel beliefs and activism, or was he merely taking that activism to a new and even more insidious level?

    The bottom line is that Stork clearly denied Israel’s legitimacy, denied its right to exist, and favored and even planned for its destruction. While Human Rights Watch does not explicitly follow this line, its effective denial of Israel’s right to self-defence would lead to exactly the same destruction of Israel long-supported by Stork.

    There is no doubt that Human Rights Watch will vehemently reject this conclusion. But with Stork’s full record now exposed, if he keeps his position at Human Rights Watch their denials will have no credibility. Neither will Human Rights Watch deserve even a shred of credibility with regard to Israel.

    You can read the full article:
    http://www.camera.org/index.asp?x_context=2&x_outlet=118&x_article=1629

  • Mike

    after talking to some friends, it was agreed that we and should not like people like r.m. lie and silience critics. as for critizism about arabs, israel constanly flauts itself as the only democracy in the middle east so therefore the should be scuritnized as such.

    israel new FM profile, and what his critic say about him, who is russian or was

    Avigdor Lieberman, leader of the Yisrael Beiteinu party, has emerged as one of Israel’s most controversial politicians.

    With polls predicting his party may eclipse Labour as Israel’s third largest in elections on 10 February, he has gone from being seen as a marginal political player to a potential kingmaker in the space of a decade.

    His hardline policies on security and the country’s Israeli-Arab minority have grown in popularity amid a general swing to the right among an electorate strongly supportive of Israel’s recent military operation in Gaza.

    The Moldovan-born politician advocates swapping swathes of Israeli-Arab populated territory in Israel with Israeli settlement blocs in the West Bank.

    Under the party slogan “No loyalty, no citizenship”, Mr Lieberman also wants a law demanding Israeli-Arabs pledge allegiance to Israel as a Jewish state and committing them to some form of national service.

    Fraud probe

    And his blunt invective and the blatant disregard for political correctness have further raised concern internationally and on the Israeli left.

    For example, he has said that Israeli-Arab MPs who met Hamas should be executed like Nazi collaborators after the Nuremburg trials.

    Advertisement
    A look at the career of Avigdor Lieberman

    And according to the Jerusalem Post he said in January 2009 that Israel should “continue to fight Hamas just like the United States did with the Japanese in World War II” – widely interpreted as a reference to the dropping of nuclear bombs on Nagasaki and Hiroshima.

    He is also under investigation for fraud, embezzlement and money-laundering, although he denies any wrong-doing and says the probe is politically motivated.

    The Yisrael Beiteinu party – or “Israel my home” – draws much of its support from the one million Jews who came to Israel after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.

    Settlers’ champion

    Mr Lieberman – once a nightclub bouncer – became a major player in Israeli politics in March 2006, when his party won 11 seats.

    This paved the way for him to become deputy prime minister (of which there are several in the government), and Minister of Strategic Affairs.

    He did not immediately become part of the then Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s government, led by the Kadima party.

    But he joined in November 2006 to shore up the rickety coalition, which saw its ratings plummet following what many Israelis saw as the bungled war with Hezbollah in Lebanon in 2006.

    Kadima had dropped its main election pledge to withdraw from a number of Jewish settlements in the West Bank, opening the way for Yisrael Beiteinu, which opposed this policy, to join the coalition.

    Mr Lieberman is a champion of the Israeli settlers and takes a tough line on unilateral withdrawals from Jewish settlements arguing that Israel gets nothing in return, particularly security guarantees.

    He pulled out of that government in January 2008, however, refusing to back its peace talks with the Palestinians on core issues under the US-backed Annapolis process.

    Mr Lieberman is strongly opposed to the concept of “land for peace” on which the proposed two-state solution is based.

    He says it means “a state-and-a-half for one people and half a state for the other” – in reference to the fifth of the population of Israel who are Israeli-Arabs, descended from families that remained in what is now Israel after the state’s creation in 1948.

    Opposed withdrawal

    Mr Lieberman’s political career dates back to a stint as director general of the centre-right Likud Party from 1993-1996, followed by a year as head of the office of then Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

    Mr Netanyahu is now showing signs of concern that his party – expected to gain most seats in the upcoming elections – is losing votes to his former employee.

    Mr Lieberman has served as an MK in the last three Knessets.

    From 1999 to 2002, he served as minister of national infrastructure, and from 2003 to 2004 he served as minister of transportation.

    But in 2004, he was sacked from the governing coalition after opposing former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s plan to withdraw from the Jewish settlements in Gaza, which went ahead anyway in the summer of 2005.

    Mr Lieberman was born in 1958 in Kishinev in the USSR (now Chisinau in Moldova) and moved to Israel at the age of 20, where he gained a BA in social sciences from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem

    Israel’s former chief peace negotiator says the way the new government is talking shows it will not be a partner for peace with the Palestinians.

    Tzipi Livni’s criticism follows the rejection by her successor as foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, of recent US-backed efforts towards a peace deal.

    “What happened is that the government announced that Israel is not relevant, is not a partner,” she said.

    New PM Benjamin Netanyahu has pledged to seek peace but has not detailed how.

    Ms Livni’s centrist Kadima party came narrowly ahead of Mr Netanyahu’s right-wing Likud in the February election, but he was asked to form a coalition as right-leaning parties predominated.

    From today, Israel has announced that it is not a partner

    Tzipi Livni

    In his speech on Wednesday, at a foreign ministry handover attended by Ms Livni, the ultra-nationalist Mr Lieberman said Israel was not bound by the Annapolis accords agreed with the Palestinians and the Bush administration in November 2007.

    He said the only legitimate document was another US-sponsored deal, the Road Map peace plan of 2003, because he said it was ratified by the Israeli government and the UN Security Council.

    First test

    In an interview with Israeli army radio, Ms Livni said hardliners had avoided peace efforts in the past with the “pathetic excuse” that there had been no partner on the Palestinian side.

    COALITION MEMBERS
    Likud: 27 seats, 15 ministers
    Yisrael Beiteinu 15 : 5 ministers
    Labour: 13 seats, 5 ministers
    Shas: 11 seats, 4 ministers
    Jewish Home: 3 seats, 1 minister
    United Torah Judaism: 5 seats

    Analysis: Israel’s unwieldy government

    “From today, Israel has announced that it is not a partner,” she said.

    “The remarks do not represent Israel, the remarks hurt Israel,” she added, and urged Mr Netanyahu to disavow them.

    Correspondents say Mr Netanyahu has softened his opposition towards the Palestinians since his last premiership in the 1990s.

    However, they add, the appointment of Mr Lieberman has angered Palestinians and raised international concerns because of his hard-line positions on the peace process and his manifesto which was widely seen as racist against Arabs.

    Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said Mr Lieberman’s remarks were the first test for US President Barack Obama in the Middle East.

    “He has slammed the door in the face of the US and the international community,” he said.

    No land for peace

    US state department spokesman Gordon Duguid would not be drawn into commenting on Mr Lieberman’s views when he briefed reporters in Washington.

    Instead, he stressed Mr Netanyahu’s stated commitment to achieving peace and said the administration would work closely to advance that cause.

    Analysts say the Road Map never got off the ground because both sides accused each other of failing to meet their obligations.

    Israel said the Palestinian Authority had not clamped down on militants, while Palestinians said Israel ignored a freeze on settlement activity on occupied territory.

    Annapolis was designed to get over that hump by jumping directly to final status talks on Palestinian independence.

    However, Annapolis too got stuck and had made little apparent progress by its initial deadline of the end of 2008.

    After his speech, Mr Lieberman went further in a TV interview, saying he also opposed withdrawal from the occupied Golan Heights as part of peace negotiations with Syria.

    He said he was “very much in favour of peace with Syria – but only on one basis – peace in return for peace” and not, by implication, a land-for-peace deal.

    Syria says the Golan Heights, occupied by Israel in 1967, must be returned in full if there is to be peace between the two countries.

    thats what u say is a racist who does not want peace. along with him being under investigation as well.

    and the smear against HR and aminesty is baseless, so the whole world has faith in it except u, haha dont make me laugh along with your talks about issue is the world u take the information from these sources u so debase.

    if u wish to talk about terrorism than u can talk about the founders of israel who targeted arab women and children and displace over 750k arab people.

    or talk about the support israel had for hamas against the plo as a counter-weight, than after elections systematically assainating its democratically elected leaders, and state sponsered kidnapping and torture.

    or lets talk about all the jewish orgainazations who spoke out against what israel is doing.

    If u wish to compare yourselfs to current day democracys be prepared to get critized like one.

  • R.M.

    lie ,there is nothing hidden ….just investigate it …you and your friends should do some homework . You bunch of phonies are not the left , you are so much on the margins that you have revolved into the far right ….all you need is to lift your arm up a bit to do the salute ….

  • Mike

    haha, u talk about yourself so very well,

    maybe u should actually investigate whats going on, since facts, pictures,videos,history, globally recognized human rights organizations, globally recognized news outlets, jewish people in israel and outside say otherwise.

    israel even picked a guy whose against a 2 state solution and continuing to build internationally recognized as illegal settlement where all but one judge said it was and the one (u.s.) did not reject but refrain from,

    along with his racist new FM who even Tzipi Livni thinks is a joke and will not bring peace.

    so again if u think israel is so much better than the arab country in the middle east be prepared to have it get criticize like one unless u dont?

  • R.M.
  • Edgono

    “Mr. Weissel is just monopolizising human rights”
    2011_SU_ENG111_07: Expository Writing You are here
    Moodle/ ► 11SU_ENG111_07/ ► Forums/ ► Rhetoric 2–Old Man and a Boy/ ► The Danger of Monopolizing Humans Rights◄ Previous activity Syllabus ENG 111-07 Summer 2011 Extra Credit Opportunites Top Twenty Writing Errors Top Twenty Writing Errors 2 Top Twenty Errors 3 Top Twenty Writing Errors 4 Dorothy Allison, NYU Lecture Response to Videos of Walker, O’Brien, and Allison Reading Assignment: Models For Writers Brilliant Questions from the Literacy Narrative Writers Models for Writers–Reading Assignment “It is Achievable,” Tererai Trent Tererai Trent, Chapter Next Tererai Trent’s Literacy Narrative Notes on the Process Draft Literacy Narrative Paper Veteran Heckled at Columbia University Westboro Baptist Chuch and Fox News Tennessee “Don’t Say Gay” Bill QUIZ #1 Models for Writers QUIZ #2 MFW Heckled Veteran Westboro Baptist Church “Don’t Say Gay” Bill Ellen Degeneres and It Gets Better Ellen Degeneres and Its Get Better Dream Act Legislation Dream Act Legislation Ethnic Studies–Tucson AZ Ethnic Studies–Tucson AZ Reading Assignment in Models For Writers Reading Assignment in Models For Writers Rhetoric 1–In the Name of God Rhetoric 2–Old Man and a Boy Rhetoric 3–Origins Rhetoric 4–Crisis and Individuals Rhetoric 5–Be Seated Rhetoric 6–A Whisper Directions for 6 rhetorical response forums Rhetoric 1–In the Name of God Jump to… Rhetoric 3–Origins Rhetoric 4–Crisis and Individuals Rhetoric 5–Be Seated Rhetoric 6–A Whisper Next activity ►
     
    Display replies flat, with oldest first Display replies flat, with newest first Display replies in threaded form Display replies in nested form The Danger of Monopolizing Human Rights Mr. Weissel in a very vivid and emotional way do a fantastic job remembering us about all the horrible suffering of the holocaust’s victims; however Mr. Weissel stand on the Palestinian-Israeli tragedy is bias and support the oppressor and not the victims.For example, in the second volume of his 1999 memoirs, Mr. Wiesel admitted, “Indeed, I can say in good faith that I have not remained indifferent to any cause involving the defense of human rights. But, you may ask, what have I done to alleviate the plight of the Palestinians? And here I must confess:  I have not done enough.  Is an explanation in order?  In spite of considerable pressure, I have refused to take a public stand in the Israeli-Arab conflict,” According to Mr.weissel, “I have said it before:  since I do not live in Israel, it would be irresponsible for me to do so.” Mr. weissel’s indifference about the Palestinians’ human rights is a clear example of his double moral; Mr. Weissel do not live up to his own words

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