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Jussie Smollett and Jewish Hoaxes

By Israel Shamir • Unz Review • February 22, 2019

The Jussie Smollett hoax and its debunking may yet change the trend of baseless accusations. God knows, the hoaxers went too far, and it’s high time for correction. The concise list of hoaxes would be too long for this essay, but here is a small list of very recent ones. They were met by public outrage and media indignation, for very little reason, and now we may expect a downward market correction, due to overpriced stock.

Some unlikely persons already attempt to capitalise on the expected reaction in order to channel it to the preferred direction – in a very unlikely medium. Mr Noah Rothman, an editor of Commentary magazine, condemned in The New York Times the imprudent haste of media falling for the hoax. Come on, really! The NY Times is a leading propagator of similar hoaxes. Whenever there is a story of a suffering diversity person, The New York Times usually takes it and plays it to its full extent. And when the hoax is revealed, usually the newspaper mentions it on page 46, at the bottom. So why is this night different, as the Jews ask on Passover night?

Mr Rothman is all against hoaxes by coloured and gay persons, that’s why. He mentions a few of them and adds his complaint: “There have been no similar national paroxysms amid a sharp uptick in violence targeting New York City’s Jewish population… The real tragedy … that hate crimes are, in fact, on the rise in the Trump era, particularly against Jews”. He does not mind hoaxes, he minds blacks arousing paroxysms of anguish at the expense of the Jews. The Americans and Europeans should feel sorry for Jews and anger for their adversaries, and every cry and tear for a black is a waste of a good cry and tear.

Among hoaxes he mentions, there is not a single one by a Jew, yet Jews are the leading perpetrators of hoaxes. Michael Kader of Ashkelon, Israel with over two thousand hoaxes to his account claiming attacks on Jewish community centres and synagogues is the shining example, but there are plenty of them. A Jewish woman had made a hoax bomb threat to a synagogue. A Jewish man spray-painted swastikas on his own house.

For Rothman, Jews are always innocent victims, as opposed to uppity blacks, who are guilty. This bias is a hallmark of Commentary Magazine, flagship of the Neocons, and the Neocon movement was established with a highly prejudiced attitude towards the blacks. Their open anti-black racism has been their entry card into white society.

The very word ‘racism’ has been grossly devalued, like the word ‘rape’. Nowadays having mutually consensual sex amounts to rape in case of buyers’ remorse, like in the case of Julian Assange, while standing still in front of a Native American drummer is defined as ‘racism’ (BTW, Nick Sandmann, the Covington Catholic student, is suing the perpetrator of this hoax, the Washington Post ). When everything is ‘racism’, nothing is. However, racism (and rape) could be a real thing. The most racist anti-black rant you can find on an American internet site is not on a KKK nor a Stormfront nor a Hollywood Nazi page, but on the Commentary site. It was written by Norman Podhoretz, its editor-in-chief, and published in 1963, that is, 55 years ago.

Norman Podhoretz

In the article My Negro Problem—And Ours the founder of the Neocon movement admits of “hating the Negroes with all my heart”. He tells of his mother who “in Yiddish cursed the goyim and the Schwartzes, the Schwartzes and the goyim.” All American whites are sick in their feelings about Negroes, he asserts. He admits that he “grew up fearing and envying and hating Negroes” and this feeling hasn’t gone. “Now do I fear them and envy them and hate them still? The answer is yes, but not in the same proportions and certainly not in the same way… I know it from the disgusting prurience that can stir in me at the sight of a mixed couple; If I were to be asked today whether I would like a daughter of mine ’to marry one,’ I would have to answer: ’No, I wouldn’t like it at all. I would rail and rave and rant and tear my hair.’”

Disgusting prurience – neither more, nor less! David Duke’s views are moderate compared to Norman Podhoretz’s, but Duke is ostracized while Podhoretz was a leading light of his generation. Podhoretz nursed a special hatred of Black Muslims, while Duke was friendly with them. Despite his admitted hate of the blacks, Podhoretz felt “the insane rage … at the thought of Negro anti-Semitism”. It is fine for him to hate them, but if they hate him, it is a reason for ‘insane rage’.

Podhoretz’s views, obnoxious as they were, derive from the traditional Jewish view as stated by Maimonides (Guide for the Perplexed, 3:51), namely “the Blacks are like dumb animals; they are not fully human; they are positioned below humans, but they are above monkeys for their appearance is like human and their mind is better than that of monkeys”.

With such views, you understand why some Jewish scribes like Mr Rothman hate Black hoaxes – and here they find an echo chamber within some White groups. They just do not mention Jewish hoaxes.

However, black and gay hoaxes are annoying, that’s all. Jewish hoaxes are very dangerous and expensive. Michael Kader’s hoaxes cost the American taxpayer a great deal, for his bomb threats were translated into hundreds of millions of dollars of grants for Jewish NGOs. These funds were given by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) “because the Jews are the most commonly targeted religious group in the United States.” Now we know that the Jews were targeted by their coreligionist from Ashkelon, but the funds have not been returned, with apologies. There are no statistics for the total Jewish share in the DHS’s $50 billion annual budget, but my guess it is a large one.

Presenting a frivolous remark of the freshman senator Ilhan Omar as an “antisemitic attack” is another kind of Jewish hoax, or “The Growing Anti-Semitism Scam”, in words of our colleague Philip Giraldi.

Similar scams were practiced this week in England and France with powerful results. In England, seven (now eight) Jewish and Judeophile MPs have stormed out of the Labour Party claiming Labour has been ‘infected’ with ‘anti-Jewish racism’. Since Jeremy Corbyn was elected to lead the party, it became the most numerous one in Western Europe. It became popular because it regained its ties with the British worker. And immediately its philosemitic Blairite wing began to campaign against the new leader.

Their campaign is based on the Jewish hoax of Corbyn’s alleged antisemitism and racism. This hoax is as baseless as that of Jussie Smollett’s but far more dangerous. You can watch the Al Jazeera film The Lobby Part 3 and see how an encounter between an elderly lady pro-Palestinian Labour-supporter and the head of Labour Friends of Israel was misrepresented as an “antisemitic onslaught”. Actually, Smollett is a rather innocent bloke; he bayed for sympathy, while Joan Ryan, an MP and the chair of Labour Friends of Israel has collected over million dollars from Israel Embassy’s slush fund.

The scammers want to sabotage the British people’s desire to throw off the shackles of Brussels. Their “Independent [from Brits, not from Israel] Group” is against Brexit, for NATO, for nuclear weapons, for wars overseas, for neoliberalism, and that is quite aside from the Jewish and Israeli issues. They are being joined by a few ex-Tories of similar persuasion. (My British friend heartily approved of this step, for “all the rotten apples should be in one basket”).

A Labour MP said it was “possible” that Israel is a financial backer of the breakaway Independent Group of MPs, but almost immediately recanted and apologised for the suggestion.

Many reviews of the British Labour split explain it by Corbyn’s pro-Palestinian views. Corbyn and his allies also prefer this explanation.

Another, more plausible explanation crosses the bounds of the permissible in civilised society. What the heck, let us cross it.

The British Jews overwhelmingly vote for Tories; the Jews are for Remain in the EU; Jews are for banks and international institutions. Corbyn’s Labour stands for its direct opposite. These are words of Jeremy Corbyn just before his election: They, the world’s bankers, International Monetary Fund, European Union, they are utterly united in what they want. Utterly united in deflation, suppressing the economy, and creating unemployment. The word “Jew” or “Israel” wasn’t mentioned even once, but British and American Jews think that ‘bankers’, ‘IMF’ and ‘EU’ are them. They are what they are, in the words of Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

The State of Israel is important for them, perhaps the Bible, Talmud and talith are precious, but only on Saturdays. While their identification with banks, globalism, neoliberal practice is their daily routine. Marx advised to pay attention to the Weekday Jew, rather than to the Saturday Jew. This advice is still valid.

Corbyn has no problem with Jews qua Jews; everybody in the Socialist movement is used to Jews. He is against Israeli anti-Palestinian policies, and there are Jews of such views, too (though we take a lot of beating). But being against Israeli policies AND against bankers, IMF and EU means threatening the Weekday Jew’s bread and butter.

Thirty years ago, in the formative years of Jeremy Corbyn, Jews were more to the left, and then such a policy had been possible. But now the Jews have moved to the right, or to the moneyed centre for bankers, and they would have a problem with Corbyn even if he were studying Talmud daily.

The struggle of the Seven against ‘antisemitism’ has nothing to do with their alleged anti-racism. Angela Smith, a UK MP who quit the Labour Party over alleged racism, next day was caught on live TV appearing to refer to people from black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds as having a “funny tinge”.

Our colleague and friend Jonathan Cook of Nazareth noticed that the departing MPs are united not only by their uncritical attitude to Israel, but also by “their enthusiasm for foreign wars, for the enrichment of a narrow neo-liberal elite; [they] are ambivalent about austerity policies, and are reticent at returning key utilities to public ownership”. In other words, they are for neo-liberalism, and complaints of antisemitism serve as a cover for it.

You can read my piece Love Labours Lost explaining this rightwards shift of Jews and dismay of British Labour at the loss of erstwhile allies.

In France, the Jews greatly improved on Smollett. A French Jewish scribe Alain Finkielkraut (let us call him f-Kraut for short) had been insulted by a kuffiyeh-wearing Palestinian who marched with other brave Gilets Jaunes along a Parisian street. It was a minor event; the scribe was not beaten or roughly handled in any way; he was called ‘a dirty Zionist’, not a big deal. He is a Zionist, no doubt. Other people in the street even invited f-Kraut to join them. Pretty much a non-event. If I was writing about every occasion I was called an ‘enemy of Israel’ or ‘enemy of the Jewish people’, I’d write of nothing else for lack of time. But the reaction in France was like a million Smolletts.

“A few insults directed against a certain essayist called “philosopher” by the media are infinitely more serious than the loss of an eye by a young student in philosophy of twenty years who had done absolutely nothing wrong” – acerbically commented our friend Jean Bricmont (a partner and co-author of the columnist Diana Johnstone).

Indeed, the same day Macron’s henchmen knocked out an eye of a young Gilet Jaune; they had left another one lacking an arm; thousands were attacked by gas in what was perhaps the biggest gas assault in Europe since Ypres. But the MSM took up the case of Finkielkraut and made a Kristallnacht out of it. They claimed f-Kraut was called a “dirty Jew” and that he was almost lynched, but saved by police. (Both claims are not true; though there were cases of journalists being roughed up at the demos, and calling someone a Jew is not an offence at all, but in this case it didn’t even happen).

While doing a full Smollett, the media and President Macron went after the Gilets Jaunes, describing them as antisemites and Nazis. Thus a non-event was turned into a huge affaire; and the first real popular movement in France since 1968 was besmirched. On the same occasion, Macron explicitly equalled anti-Zionism with antisemitism and made it a criminal offence.

In addition, some unknown Smolletts painted swastikas on the Jewish cemetery, as is their wont whenever Jews wish to show they are being persecuted. I have little doubt these swastikas are painted by persons hired by this or that Jewish organisation, or by Macron’s men who wanted to amplify the f-kraut non-event.

Tens of thousands of gullible French attended a rally for f-Kraut and against antisemitism. “The fawning eagerness of the political class rushing to demonstrate against something that hardly exists”, – noted a French writer. The French political class paid no attention when a church was desecrated. But for a Jew whom somebody dissed on a street – they all marched. Media published denunciations of Yellow Vests, and Macron made a lot of political capital out of it. In purely political terms, the fallout of the f-Kraut affair could be compared to Trump’s impeachment in the wake of the Smollett shenanigans.

Mind you, this f-kraut deserved to be insulted all right. He is a French Norman (“I hate Niggers!”) Podhoretz. He spoke of “Black hatred for France”, said that “Gaza has too many children, and they have no place in the world”; ridiculed Black football players of France for being black; he is an enemy of Palestinians and of Muslims, and he does not care much for the French people either. He is known for his claim “What is good for the Jews is good for France”, for his call for segregation between Jews and Palestinians. It is amazing that a Jew with such views is considered to be “on the left”, and he is invited to TV and newspaper interviews, though he is more racist than French nationalists like Le Pen or Soral. He also wrote a nasty piece against the Gilets Jaunes, but the GJs have insulted him far less than he deserves.

In England and in France, as well as in the US, the Jews became a symbol of the present neo-liberal regime, as the scams and hoaxes make it apparent. This is more important for people here than the issue of Palestine, and unavoidable reaction to neo-liberalism will cause collapse of this Jewish role and incidentally will bring equality of Jew and Gentile to Israel/Palestine.

Israel Shamir can be reached at adam@israelshamir.net

February 22, 2019 Posted by | Deception, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , , | Leave a comment

Labour: anti-Semitic or just resisting occupation?

The war on Corbyn heats up

By Stuart Littlewood | Dissident Voice | February 21, 2019

Today there’s an important addition to the group of MPs defecting from the UK Labour Party: Joan Ryan.

Important because Ryan is Chair of Labour Friends of Israel. She recently lost a no-confidence vote in her constituency so her days as an MP are probably numbered anyway.

Are we beginning to see an orchestrated drip-drip of resignations following the departure of ‘The Insignificant Seven’, as the Morning Star called them, at the start of the week? Their destructive intent is clear for all to see from their dizzy remarks.

In a statement Labour Friends of Israel said:

Under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, anti-Jewish hatred and demonisation of the world’s only Jewish state has been allowed to flourish. The politics of the hard left represent a threat to the security of the UK, to our traditional alliances and to the stability of the Middle East and its only democracy, the state of Israel.

We will continue to work both within the Labour party and with like-minded, independent MPs on the left and centre left to promote a two-state solution, to combat anti-Zionist antisemitism and counter the delegitimisation of Israel. Joan Ryan MP will remain in her position as our Parliamentary Chair.

Israel, of course, is no Western-style democracy. It’s an ethnocracy, that is a deeply ethnic power structure behind a thin democratic veneer.

Joan Ryan leaves with a long, ranting attack on the Labour Party and Jeremy Corbyn in particular. Over the past three years, she says, the Labour party under Corbyn “has become infected with the scourge of anti-Jewish racism. This problem simply did not exist in the party before his election as leader…. I have been horrified, appalled and angered to see the Labour leadership’s dereliction of duty in the face of this evil….

“I cannot remain a member of the Labour party while its leadership allows Jews to be abused with impunity and the victims of such abuse to be ridiculed, have their motives questioned, and their integrity called into doubt.

“I cannot remain a member of the Labour party while its leadership singles out for demonization and delegitimization the world’s only Jewish state.

“And I cannot remain a member of the Labour party while this requires me to suggest that I believe Jeremy Corbyn – a man who has presided over the culture of anti-Jewish racism and hatred for Israel which now afflicts my former party – is fit to be Prime Minister of this country. He is not.”

This “singling out” of Israel for criticism is an old refrain. Israel does a good job of delegitmizing itself by its contempt for international law and cruel subjugation of Palestinians whose lands they have stolen – and continue to steal. And people of conscience single out Israel because these unforgivable crimes are going on in the Holy Land, territory which is sacred to Muslims, Christians and Jews alike. It was also a British mandate and in 1948 we abandoned it in an unholy mess. We have a responsibility to make amends.

Ms Ryan complains about “a revolving door disciplinary policy with those accused of antisemitism briefly suspended and then quietly readmitted to the party”. Ken Livingstone will be interested to hear that. He was suspended “indefinitely” from the party nearly 3 years ago. Those accused of anti-Semitism are typically subjected to administrative suspension for around 6 months during which their reputation and public standing are shattered and they are hampered in their work if councillors or MPs. Life is made hell. And if the disciplinary hearing finds the charges baseless there are no consequences for the vexatious accuser.

And she grumbles about the party’s refusal to adopt in full the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of antisemitism. “Jeremy Corbyn had but one priority: to preserve the right of antisemites to label Israel a ‘racist endeavour’. That priority tells me all I need to know about his fitness to lead the Labour party and our country.” This remark is particularly stupid. Several legal experts have pointed out how the IHRA definition contradicts existing laws and conventions guaranteeing freedom of expression and would cause endless trouble if used in an attempt to punish.

Furthermore the Israel project was from the start – before Balfour even – unashamedly racist in purpose as demonstrated yet again only a few months ago when Israel enacted nation state laws that make its non-Jewish citizens distinctly second-class.

The Ryan rant goes on to include remarks like these:

  • “The Jewish community has made clear that it believes a Jeremy Corbyn government would be an existential threat to it. I will not campaign to put such a government into office.”
  • The mindset that tolerates antisemitism “is one that would ostracise the Middle East’s only democracy in favour of the Ayatollahs in Tehran: a regime which tramples on human rights, has the blood of tens of thousands of Syrians on its hands, and seeks to dominate and subjugate the region and impose its theocratic brutal rule.”
  • “And it is one that would abandon our friends in Europe in favour of appeasing Vladimir Putin….”
  • “Nine years of Tory government have caused enormous damage to my constituency and the country. Held hostage by the hard right of her party, the Prime Minister is now preparing to inflict a crippling hard Brexit – one that will rob the young of their future. Jeremy Corbyn and the Stalinist clique that surrounds him offers no real opposition to any of this.”

Under the influence

So, of the eight ex-Labour MPs now huddled together in the Independence Group six are signed up Friends of Israel. Why would any politician in receipt of a salary from the British taxpayer wish to promote the interests of a foreign military power – and a belligerent, racist one at that? Why are they allowed to? After all, doesn’t that breach the second of the Seven Principles of Public Life, namely Integrity – “Holders of public office should not place themselves under any financial or other obligation to outside individuals or organisations that might seek to influence them in the performance of their official duties.”?

But put that to the watchdog, the Committee on Standards in Public Life, and you’ll get nowhere. Eleven years ago twenty senior professionals wrote to the CSPL about the undue influence of the Israel lobby at the heart of British government. They reminded the Standards Committee how Friends of Israel had embedded itself in the British political establishment with the stated purpose of promoting Israel’s interests in our Parliament and bending British policy.  The various Friends of Israel groups had gone to great lengths to influence those in power a good many of whom, it seemed, had reached their high positions with FoI help. The network acted as a sort of parliamentary freemasonry. The political director of Conservative Friends of Israel at the time claimed that with over 2,000 members and registered supporters alongside 80 percent of the Conservative MPs, it was the largest affiliated group in the party.

Its website stated that the CFI “strives to support the Conservative Party at all available opportunities. In the run up to the 2005 General Election… CFI supported candidates up and down the country. As candidates are now being continuously selected for target seats, CFI has developed a special programme of weekly briefings, events with speakers and a chance to participate in delegations to Israel.” It also had a ‘Fast Track’ group for Conservative parliamentary candidates fighting target marginal seats. The political director himself was seeking election to Parliament. If successful where would his loyalty lie?

Senior Conservatives tried to justify these activities by insisting that Israel was “a force for good in the world” and “in the battle for the values that we stand for, for democracy against theocracy, for democratic liberal values against repression – Israel’s enemies are our enemies and this is a battle in which we all stand together” [my emphasis].

Eleven years on, we can see what “good” Israel has been in the world and what impact the British government’s “viewpoint” ever had on the Israeli government’s criminal conduct.

The best thing Corbyn could do is shut down the Labour Party’s Friends of Israel operation. If people want to form such associations let them do it outside Westminster. They should not be allowed to flourish within any parliamentary party.

As for the Conservative Party’s flag-waving for Israel, words fail.

February 22, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , , , , | Leave a comment

Libya jails 4 Palestinians over alleged Hamas links

MEMO | February 22, 2019

A court in Tripoli on Wednesday sentenced four Palestinians to prison terms ranging from 17 to 22 years over their alleged links to Hamas.

The four defendants were accused of “setting up a secret foreign organisation on Libyan territory, arms possession and conspiring against state security.”

The Palestinians were arrested on 6 October 2016 from their homes in the capital, Tripoli, and were taken to an unknown destination.

Family sources told Arabi21 news site that they had been denied family visits for two months before their prison sentences were announced.

According to the sources, the detainees suffered daily abuses resulted in one of them losing one of his eyes. One detainee named Marwan who suffers from hypertension and diabetes has been denied his medication.

The four Palestinians used to work for a technology company in the capital, Tripoli.

The detainees’ families expressed their “fear that they would be handed over to Israel via a third party” appealing to all concerned bodies to help release them.

February 22, 2019 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Wars for Israel | , , | Leave a comment

Macron: anti-Zionism is anti-Semitism

MEMO | February 21, 2019

France is to recognise anti-Zionism, the denial of the state of Israel, as a form of anti-Semitism in response to a surge in acts against Jews not seen “since the Second World War”, reports The Telegraph.

French president, Emmanuel Macron, also promised new legislation in May to fight hate speech on the Internet, which could see platforms such as Facebook and Twitter fined for every minute they fail to take down racist or violent content.

Speaking at the annual meeting of France’s largest Jewish organization, CRIF, Macron said that France and other countries in Europe had recently witnessed “a resurgence of anti-Semitism that is probably unprecedented since World War II.”

We have denounced it a lot, adopted plans, passed laws sometimes. But we haven’t been able to act efficiently.

While stopping short of calling for new legislation, the President said the working definition of anti-Semitism drawn up by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance would help guide police forces, magistrates and teachers in their daily work.

That definition stipulates that anti-Semitism can take the form of “denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination, e.g., by claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist endeavour”.

He added:

Anti-Zionism is one of the modern forms of anti-Semitism. Behind the negation of Israel’s existence, what is hiding is the hatred of Jews.  Such guidelines in no way infringed on people’s right to criticise to the Israeli government and its policies.

Macron also said that his party would introduce a bill in parliament in May to force social media to withdraw hate speech posted online and use all available means to identify the authors “as quickly as possible.”

Digital minister Mounir Mahjoubi said: “There will be an obligation for results: if the content is not taken down then there will be a fine, and a large fine,” Mr Mahjoubi told France Info radio. “Each minute that content remains online, it increases the harm to society. Twenty-four hours is far too long.”

Macron’s speech came a day after thousands attended rallies across France to denounce a rise in anti-Semitic acts.

READ ALSO:

France will recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital one day

February 21, 2019 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , | 2 Comments

MP who fabricated anti-Semitism scandal leaves Labour, citing ‘culture of racism and anti-Semitism’

RT | February 20, 2019

The latest Labour MP to jump ship over alleged racism and anti-Semitism is Joan Ryan, which is curious, because it was she who was exposed as having created an alleged anti-Semitism scandal within the Labour Party.

Ryan announced she was joining the Independent Group because of the “culture of anti-Jewish racism and hatred for Israel” within the party under leader Jeremy Corbyn on Tuesday.

Ryan is chair of the Labour Friends of Israel (LFI), which was exposed as having ties to the Israeli government and exerting influence on UK politics in a 2017 Al Jazeera documentary into the Israel lobby in the UK.

Al Jazeera’s undercover reporter filmed Ryan creating what would later be framed as an anti-Semitism scandal at the Labour conference in 2016. Labour member Jean Fitzpatrick approached a stand to ask questions about Labour’s support of a two-state solution with Israel and Palestine and was soon dismissed by Ryan.

Ryan later claimed the woman had made “anti-Semitic tropes” about Israel’s influence and banking, but the footage showed she made that up.

In September, Ryan lost a no confidence vote brought against her by her local parliamentary constituency over her smearing of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, but said she would not step down.

In the Al Jazeera footage, Ryan also talks to a then-senior officer of the Israeli embassy who tells her he has secured “more than one million pounds” in Israeli government funding for an LFI trip to Israel. Out of the six Labour MPs to quit the party, six are listed supporters of Labour Friends of Israel.

Social media users were quick to point out the irony of an MP leaving a party over anti-Semitism when she created a false anti-Semitism claim from within the Labour Party.

February 21, 2019 Posted by | Deception, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Video | , , , , | 1 Comment

How the rule of the rabbis is fuelling a holy war in Israel

By Jonathon Cook | February 13, 2019

In which country did a senior, state-salaried cleric urge his followers last month to become “warriors”, emulating a group of young men who had murdered a woman of another faith?

The cleric did so with impunity. In fact, he was only echoing other highly placed colleagues who have endorsed a book – again without penalty – urging their disciples to murder babies belonging to other religions.

Where can the head of the clergy call black people “monkeys” and urge the expulsion of other religious communities?

Where does a clerical elite wield so much power that they alone decide who can marry or get divorced – and are backed by a law that can jail someone who tries to wed without their approval? They can even shut down the national railway system without notice.

Where are these holy men so feared that women are scrubbed from billboards, college campuses introduce gender segregation to appease them, and women find themselves literally pushed to the back of the bus?

Is the country Saudi Arabia? Or Myanmar? Or perhaps, Iran?

No. It is Israel, the world’s only self-declared Jewish state.

Which ‘shared values’?

There is barely a politician in Washington seeking election who has not at some point declared an “unbreakable bond” between the United States and Israel, or claimed the two uphold “shared values”. Few, it seems, have any idea what values Israel really represents.

There are many grounds for criticising Israel, including its brutal oppression of Palestinians under occupation and its system of institutionalised segregation and discrimination against the fifth of its population who are not Jewish – its Palestinian minority.

But largely ignored by critics have been Israel’s increasing theocratic tendencies.

This hasn’t simply proved regressive for Israel’s Jewish population, especially women, as the rabbis exert ever greater control over the lives of religious and secular Jews alike.

It also has alarming implications for Palestinians, both under occupation and those living in Israel, as a national conflict with familiar colonial origins is gradually transformed into a holy war, fuelled by extremist rabbis with the state’s implicit blessing.

Control of personal status

Despite Israel’s founding fathers being avowedly secular, the separation between church and state in Israel has always been flimsy at best – and it is now breaking down at an ever-accelerating rate.

After Israel’s establishment, David Ben Gurion, Israel’s first prime minister, decided to subordinate important areas of life for Israeli Jews to the jurisdiction of an Orthodox rabbinate, representing the strictest, most traditional and conservative stream of Judaism. Other, more liberal streams have no official standing in Israel to this day.

Ben Gurion’s decision in part reflected a desire to ensure his new state embraced two differing conceptions of Jewishness: both those who identified as Jews in a secular ethnic or cultural sense, and those who maintained the religious traditions of Judaism. He hoped to fuse the two into a new notion of a Jewish “nationality”.

For that reason, the Orthodox rabbis were given exclusive control over important parts of the public sphere – personal status matters, such as conversions, births, deaths and marriages.

Biblical justifications

Bolstering the rabbis’ power was the urgent need of Israel’s secular leaders to obscure the state’s settler-colonial origins. This could be achieved by using education to emphasise Biblical justifications for the usurpation by Jews of the lands of the native Palestinian population.

As the late peace activist Uri Avnery observed, the Zionist claim was “based on the Biblical history of the Exodus, the conquest of Canaan, the kingdoms of Saul, David and Solomon … Israeli schools teach the Bible as real history.”

Such indoctrination, combined with a much higher birth rate among religious Jews, has contributed to an explosion in the numbers identifying as religious. They now comprise half the population.

Today, about a quarter of Israeli Jews belong to the Orthodox stream, which reads the Torah literally, and one in seven belong to the ultra-Orthodox, or Haredim, the most fundamentalist of the Jewish religious streams. Forecasts suggest that in 40 years the latter will comprise a third of the country’s Jewish population.

‘Conquer the government’

Both the growing power and extremism of the Orthodox in Israel was highlighted in the last week of January when one of their most influential rabbis, Shmuel Eliyahu, publicly came to the defence of five students accused of murdering Aisha Rabi, a Palestinian mother of eight. Back in October they stoned her car near Nablus, in the occupied West Bank, forcing her off the road.

Eliyahu is the son of a former chief rabbi of Israel, Mordechai Eliyahu, and himself sits on the Chief Rabbinical Council, which controls many areas of life for Israelis. He is also the municipal rabbi of Safed, a city that in Judaism has the equivalent status of Medina in Islam or Bethlehem in Christianity, so his words carry a great deal of weight with Orthodox Jews.

Last month, a video came to light of a talk he gave at the seminary where the five accused studied, in the illegal settlement of Rehelim, south of Nablus.

Eliyahu not only praised the five as “warriors” but told fellow students that they needed to overthrow the “rotten” secular court system. He told them it was vital to “conquer the government” too, but without guns or tanks. “You have to take the state’s key positions,” he urged them.

Law-breaking judges

In truth, that process is already well-advanced.

Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked, who should have been the first to denounce Eliyahu’s comments, is closely aligned with religious settlers. Tellingly, she and other government ministers have maintained a studious silence.

That is because the political representatives of Israel’s religious Jewish communities, including the settlers, have now become the lynchpin of Israeli coalition governments. They are the kingmakers and can extract enormous concessions from other parties.

For some time, Shaked has been using her position to bring more openly nationalistic and religious judges into the legal system, including to the highest court in the land, the Supreme Court.

Two of its current 15 judges, Noam Sohlberg and David Mintz, are law-breakers, openly living in West Bank settlements in violation of international law. Several more judges appointed to the bench by Shaked are religious and conservative.

This is a significant victory for the Orthodox religious and the settlers. The court is the last line of defence for the secular against an assault on their religious freedoms and on gender equality.

And the court offers the only recourse for Palestinians seeking to mitigate the worst excesses of the violent and discriminatory policies of the Israeli government, army and settlers.

Chosen people

Shaked’s colleague, Naftali Bennett, another ideologue of the settlement movement, has been education minister in the Netanyahu government for four years. This post has long been a critical one for the Orthodox because it shapes Israel’s next generation.

After decades of concessions to the rabbis, Israel’s school system is already heavily skewed towards religion. A survey in 2016 showed 51 percent of Jewish pupils attended sex-segregated religious schools, which emphasise Biblical dogma – up from 33 percent only 15 years earlier.

This may explain why a recent poll found that 51 percent believe Jews have a divine right to the land of Israel, and slightly more – 56 percent – believe that Jews are a “chosen people”.

Those results are likely to get even worse in the coming years. Bennett has been placing much greater weight in the curriculum on Jewish tribal identity, Bible studies and religious claims to Greater Israel, including to the Palestinian territories – which he wants to annex.

Conversely, science and maths are increasingly downplayed in the education system, and entirely absent from schools for the ultra-Orthodox. Evolution, for example, has been mostly erased from the syllabus, even in secular schools.

‘No mercy’ to Palestinians

Another key sphere of state power being taken over by the religious, and especially the settlers, are the security services. Police Commissioner Roni Alsheikh lived for years in a settlement renowned for its violent attacks on Palestinians, and the force’s current chief rabbi, Rahamim Brachyahu, is also a settler.

Both have actively promoted a programme, Believers in the Police, that recruits more religious Jews into the police force. Nahi Eyal, the programme’s founder, has said his aim is to help the settler community “find our way into the command ranks”.

The trend is even more entrenched in the Israeli military. Figures show that the national-religious community, to which settlers belong – though only 10 percent of the population – make up half of all new officer cadets. Half of Israel’s military academies are now religious.

That has translated into an increasing role for extremist Orthodox rabbis in motivating soldiers on the battlefield. In Israel’s 2008-09 ground invasion of Gaza, soldiers were issued with pamphlets by the army rabbinate using Biblical injunctions to persuade them to “show no mercy” to Palestinians.

Call to kill babies

Meanwhile, the rapidly growing ultra-Orthodox population has been encouraged by the government to move into West Bank settlements purpose-built for them, such as Modi’in Illit and Beitar Illit. That, in turn, is gradually fuelling the emergence of an aggressive nationalism among their youth.

Once the Haredim were openly hostile, or at best ambivalent, towards Israeli state institutions, believing that a Jewish state was sacrilegious until the Messiah arrived to rule over Jews.

Now, for the first time, young Haredim are serving in the Israeli army, adding to the pressure on the military command to accommodate their religious fundamentalist ideology. A new term for these hawkish Haredi soldiers has been coined: they are known as the “Hardal”.

Brachyahu and rabbis for the Hardal are among the senior rabbis who have endorsed a terrifying book, the King’s Torah, written by two settler rabbis, that urges Jews to treat non-Jews, and specifically Palestinians, mercilessly.

It offers God’s blessing for Jewish terror – not only against Palestinians who try to resist their displacement by settlers, but against all Palestinians, even babies, on the principle that “it is clear that they will grow [up] to harm us.”

Gender segregation expands

The dramatic rise in religiosity is creating internal problems for Israeli society too, especially for the shrinking secular population and for women.

Posters for the forthcoming election – as with adverts more generally – are being “cleaned” of women’s faces in parts of the country to avoid causing offence.

Last month, the Supreme Court criticised Israel’s Council for Higher Education for allowing segregation between men and women in college classrooms to spread to the rest of the campus, including libraries and communal areas. Female students and lecturers are facing “modesty” dress codes.

The council has even announced that it intends to expand segregation because it is proving difficult to persuade religious Jews to attend higher education.

Violence of the mob

Israel has always been a society deeply structured to keep Israeli Jews and Palestinians apart, both physically and in terms of rights. That is equally true for Israel’s large Palestinian minority, a fifth of the population, who live almost entirely apart from Jews in segregated communities. Their children are kept away from Jewish children in separate schools.

But the greater emphasis in Israel on a religious definition of Jewishness means that Palestinians now face not only the cold structural violence designed by Israel’s secular founders, but additionally a hot-tempered, Biblically sanctioned hostility from religious extremists.

That is most keenly evident in the rapid rise of physical assaults on Palestinians and their property, as well as their holy places, in Israel and the occupied territories. Among Israelis, this violence is legitimised as “price tag” attacks, as though Palestinians have brought such harm on themselves.

YouTube is now full of videos of gun- or baton-wielding settlers attacking Palestinians, typically as they try to access their olive groves or springs, while Israeli soldiers stand passively by or assist.

Arson attacks have spread from olive groves to Palestinian homes, sometimes with horrifying results, as families are burned alive.

Rabbis such as Eliyahu have stoked this new wave of attacks with their Biblical justifications. State terrorism and mob violence have merged.

Destroying al-Aqsa

The biggest potential flashpoint is in occupied East Jerusalem, where the growing symbolic and political power of these Messianic rabbis risks exploding at the al-Aqsa Mosque compound.

Secular politicians have long played with fire at this Islamic holy site, using archaeological claims to try to convert it into a symbol of historic Jewish entitlement to the land, including the occupied territories.

But their claim that the mosque is built over two Jewish temples, the last of which was destroyed two millennia ago, has been rapidly reconfigured for incendiary, modern political purposes.

The growing influence of religious Jews in parliament, the government, the courts and the security services means that officials grow ever bolder in staking a physical claim to sovereignty over al-Aqsa.

It also entails an ever greater indulgence towards religious extremists who demand more than physical control over the mosque site. They want al-Aqsa destroyed and replaced with a Third Temple.

The gathering holy war

Slowly, Israel is transforming a settler-colonial project against the Palestinians into a battle with the wider Islamic world. It is turning a territorial conflict into a holy war.

The demographic growth of Israel’s religious population, the cultivation by the school system of an ever-more extreme ideology based on the Bible, the takeover of the state’s key power centres by the religious, and the emergence of a class of influential rabbis who preach genocide against Israel’s neighbours has set the stage for a perfect storm in the region.

The question now is at what point will Israel’s allies, in the US and Europe, finally wake up to the catastrophic direction Israel is heading in – and find the will to take the necessary action to stop it.

February 20, 2019 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

US court reopens Palestinian lawsuit against billionaire Israel donor Adelson

MEMO | February 20, 2019

A US appeals court has reopened a billion-dollar lawsuit against Jewish-American tycoon Sheldon Adelson, which seeks to hold him and more than 30 others liable for war crimes and support of Israel’s illegal settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories (oPt).

The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia (DC) Circuit yesterday voted unanimously in favour of reopening the case, arguing that a federal district judge concluded wrongly in August 2017 that all of the plaintiffs’ claims raised political questions that could not be decided in US courts, Ynet has reported. At the time, the district judge claimed that the lawsuit raised political questions over which the court had no authority, including who has sovereignty over the occupied West Bank, occupied East Jerusalem and the besieged Gaza Strip. Yesterday, however, US Circuit Judge Karen LeCraft Henderson said that the sovereignty issue was separate from a broader question of whether war crimes were being committed in the oPt, reported Fortune Magazine.

“A legal determination that [illegal] Israeli settlers commit genocide in the disputed territory [oPt] would not decide ownership of the disputed territory and thus would not directly contradict any [US] foreign policy choice,” explained Judge Henderson. The lawsuit, she added, could thus be treated as a “purely legal issue” and, since genocide violates international law, the court could hear the case under America’s Alien Tort Statute, which allows foreign citizens to seek remedies in US courts for human rights violations committed outside the United States.

The lawsuit is being led by Bassem Al-Tamimi from the West Bank village of Nabi Saleh, father of Palestinian teen Ahed Tamimi who was jailed for eight months for slapping an Israeli soldier who trespassed on her family’s land. He is one of 18 Palestinians or Palestinian-Americans, as well as a Palestinian village council, who filed the lawsuit, claiming that Adelson and the other defendants conspired to expel non-Jewish communities from the oPt and accusing them of aiding genocide and other war crimes.

The other defendants include a number of high-profile US billionaires and companies with histories of funding or cooperating with Israel. Among them is Jewish-American businessman Larry Ellison – who is known to have donated billions of dollars to the Israeli army via the Friends of the IDF (FIDF) – as well as Elliot Abrams, a vocal critic of former US President Barack Obama’s lukewarm support for Israel’s illegal settlements.

Two major Israeli banks are also involved in the lawsuit — Bank Leumi and Bank Hapoalim – as well as technology company Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), which the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement accuses of providing technology for Israel’s checkpoints and Separation Wall in the occupied West Bank.

Adelson has long been a controversial figure for his support of Israel and involvement in the pro-Israel lobby in the US. Having made his fortune with the Las Vegas Sands Casino, Adelson is estimated to be worth $36.1 billion. He is known to have given $410 million to Birthright, which sends young Jews on trips to Israel, and has donated billions of dollars to the US Republican Party as well as President Donald Trump’s 2016 election and 2018 mid-term campaigns.

The billionaire Adelson is also the owner of Israel Hayom, Israel’s biggest circulation newspaper known for its overt support of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Israel Hayom lies at the heart of Case 2000, one of three corruption cases in which Netanyahu is embroiled. The Prime Minister is being investigated for promising Arnon Mozes – the owner of Israeli newspaper Yedioth Aronoth – that he would curtail the circulation of Israel Hayom, Mozes’s main competitor publication, in return for favourable coverage of him and his policies. Netanyahu is also under investigation in two other cases – dubbed Case 1000 and Case 4000 – and is awaiting a decision by Israel’s Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit as to whether he will be recommended for indictment before the country’s upcoming general election on 9 April.

February 20, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Illegal Occupation, War Crimes | , , , , | 2 Comments

UK: Daniel Finkelstein admits powerful Jews engage in secret political plotting

Diversity Macht Frei | February 20, 2019

Yet another case study in hypocrisy from the Chosen People.

First, here’s an incident they were complaining about a few days ago.

A local Labour party member, Sir Michael Duncan, complains that the “Jewish community plans to attack our party.”

Jews then attacked his party, claiming that his statement that they planned to attack his party was antisemitic and false.

Jew Mike Katz complained:

“Talking about an undemocratic elite, talking about the Jews acting as a whole community to attack the Labour party, that really plays into some of the oldest antisemitic tropes about Jews being conspiratorial, acting in secrecy, as some sort of cult, to try and influence politics”.

Yet top Jew, milord Daniel Finkelstein offered an interesting revelation in a recent Times article as he reflected on the departure of the monstrous Luciana Berger from the Labour party.

The Times :

Yesterday, in modern Britain, a young woman was driven out of Britain’s biggest progressive party by people who hate Jews and by other people who won’t do anything about it. Set against that, so much else just seems blah.

I attend meetings of the Jewish community where we discuss the problem and what to do about it. The room is full of dynamic people used to getting things done. There’s plenty of strength there and determination and brains too. Yet we all feel numb.

Finkelstein made a similar admission about Jewish collective political strategising a few years ago. Of course there were no consequences, just as there will be none now. Danny the Fink (his chosen Twitter handle) won’t lose his job or be accused of promoting “antisemitic tropes” by acknowledging that a clique of powerful Jews meet in secret to plot political change. But poor Sir Michael Duncan, who earned a knighthood by making distinguished contributions to engineering, doing something real, building things, will probably now be chased from his political party by mere artful wordsmiths and manipulators for the crime of noticing that a hostile elite is pursuing an agenda of its own, disconnected from the interests of the country it is living in.

The best illustration of the power of the Jews is that they can tauntingly admit something in one of their own articles one day then destroy your life for pointing it out the next. We are living in an ethno-tyranny.

February 20, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , | 2 Comments

This is why Al-Quds is being silenced

By Mohammed Ayesh | MEMO | February 19, 2019

If Al-Quds satellite station actually closes its doors and completely stops broadcasting, which is what is currently occurring, albeit gradually, this means that the enemies of the Palestinian national project succeeded in silencing the voice that has long plagued the occupation over the past ten years. Moreover, silencing Al-Quds carries a number of implications, most importantly those associated with the “deal of the century”, which is simmering on a low heat, and the need to silence voices opposed to it.

The collapse of Al-Quds, which broadcasts from Beirut, is occurring shortly after the imminent closure of Al-Aqsa television in Gaza, which almost occurred a few weeks ago. However, this was cancelled at the last minute. It is also occurring a few months after the complete shutdown of Al-Ketab satellite which was broadcast from Gaza. The common reason behind all of these closures and obstacles is a financial crisis.

Al-Quds has been a source of concern for the Israelis over the last ten years and it played an important role during the three wars waged against the Gaza Strip. It has therefore been bombed by the Israeli air force in Gaza and its crews were prohibited from operating in the occupied West Bank, occupied Jerusalem, and the territories inside the Green Line. Some of its journalists and correspondents were arrested and the channel was eventually shut down in those areas.

The only reason for the collapse and closure of Al-Quds channel is the financial crisis, and the reason behind the financial crisis is the siege imposed by the Arabs on the Palestinian resistance and all of its media outlets. This was the siege the Israelis were unsuccessful with, but the Arab regimes succeeded in this regard. It is a carefully planned and systematic siege that aims to silence the voices that are opposed to the “deal of the century”. It has become clear that a number of Arab regimes are involved in the arrangements of this deal and have colluded in passing it, despite the unanimous Palestinian and Jordanian rejection of it.

All the other reasons that some of the employees and those monitoring the situation have referred to are embellishments and are not the truth. Administrative errors, financial waste, or other reasons do not lead to the complete shut down of a television channel and cannot silence its voice. Moreover, a lot of these stories and statements are just figments of the imagination of those uttering them.

Al-Quds and other channels that can be referred to as the resistance’s media outlets are funded by Arab donors who have a love and passion for Palestine and Jerusalem and those who want to support the Palestinian people. Such donors were singled out by the Arab regimes, which spend millions, and even billions of dollars to slander the Palestinian people in order to promote normalisation with Israel.

The Arab regimes that besiege the Palestinians and demonise them and prevent donors from supporting them and supporting their resistance and steadfastness in the face of the occupation, are the same ones that have recently been exposed as being involved in the Judaisation of occupied Jerusalem. They are also the same regimes that are in collusion with Trump and his son-in-law Jared Kushner in preparing the “deal of the century”. They are also the same countries who mobilise electronic armies to post comments online such as, “the Palestinians in Palestine carry an Israeli passport, the Palestinians abroad sold their country, the Palestinian in Gaza are spies for Iran, and the Arabs’ interests i.e. in normalising relations with Israel because Iran is more dangerous than Israel.”  Those who believe this foolish and dubious theory are the same people who besieged Al-Quds and silenced its voice in order to continue their project.

The bottom line is that the targeting and silencing of Al-Quds is happening in the context of the siege imposed on the entire Palestinian nation and as part of the systematic campaign targeting Palestinians in order to justify normalisation with Israel. This then leads to justifying the “deal of the century”, which these Arab regimes do not want any one opposing.

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February 19, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , | Leave a comment

The Growing Anti-Semitism Scam

By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • February 19, 2019

“An anti-Semite used to mean a man who hated Jews. Now it means a man who is hated by Jews.” – Joe Sobran

In his novel 1984 George Orwell invented the expression “newspeak” to describe the ambiguous or deliberately misleading use of language to make political propaganda and narrow the “thought options” of those who are on the receiving end. In the context of today’s political discourse, or what passes for the same, it would be interesting to know what George would think of the saturation use of “anti-Semitism” as something like a tactical discussion stopper, employed to end all dispute while also condemning those accused of the crime as somehow outside the pale, monsters who are consigned forever to derision and obscurity.

The Israelis and, to be sure, many diaspora Jews know exactly how the expression has been weaponized. Former Israeli Minister Shulamit Aloni explained how it is done “Anti-Semitic”…”its a trick, we always use it.”

If one were to read the U.S. mainstream media, reflective as it nearly always is of a certain institutional Jewish viewpoint, one would think that there has been a dramatic increase in anti-Semitism worldwide, but that claim is incorrect. What has been taking place is not hatred of Jews but rather a confluence of two factors. First is the undeniable fact that Israel has been behaving particularly badly, even by its admittedly low standards. Its slaughter of Palestinians in Gaza has been unusually observable in spite of media attempts to avoid mentioning it, plus its support of terrorists in Syria and attacks on that country have also raised questions about the intentions of the kleptocratic regime in Tel Aviv, which is currently pushing for an attack on Iran. That all means that the perception of Israel, which boasts that it is the exclusively Jewish state, inevitably raises questions about the international Jewish community that provides much of its support. But the shift in perception is driven by Israeli behavior, not by Jews as an ethnicity or a religion.

Second, the alleged increase in anti-Semitic incidents is largely fueled by how those incidents are defined. Israel and its friends have worked hard to broaden the parameters of the discussion, making any criticism of Israel or its activities either a hate crime or ipso facto an anti-Semitic incident. The U.S. State Department’s working definition of anti-Semitism includes “… the targeting of the state of Israel” and it warns that anti-Semitism is a criminal offense. Recent legislation in Washington and also in Europe has criminalized hitherto legal and non-violent efforts to pressure Israel regarding its inhumanity vis-à-vis the Palestinians. Legitimate criticism of Israel thereby becomes both anti-Semitism and criminal, increasing the count of so-called anti-Semitic incidents. That means that the numbers inevitably go up, providing fodder to validate a repressive response.

One might add that Hollywood, the mainstream media and academia have contributed to the allegations regarding surging anti-Semitism, relentlessly unleashing a torrent of material rooting out alleged anti-Semites and so-called holocaust deniers, while simultaneously heaping praise on Israel and its achievements. Professor of Holocaust Studies Deborah Lipstadt has written a book Anti-Semitism: Here and Now about what she regards as the new anti-Semitism, supporting her belief that it is getting markedly worse in both Europe and the U.S. There is also a movie about her confrontation with holocaust critic David Irving called Denial. All of the media exposure of so-called anti-Semitism has a political objective, whether intended or not, which is to insulate Israel itself from any criticism and to create for all Jews the status of perpetual victimhood which permits many in the diaspora to unflinchingly support a foreign country against the interests of the nations where they were born, raised and made their fortunes. That is called dual loyalty and, in spite of frequent denials from Israel-apologists, it clearly exists for many American Jews who are passionate about the Jewish state, including members of the Trump Administration Jason Greenblatt, David Friedman and Jared Kushner.

In the past week, a newly elected member of congress has been derided, shunned and then forced to both recant and apologize for having said something that is manifestly true: that Jewish money corrupts the American political system to favor Israel. The controversy erupted after House minority leader Republican Kevin McCarthy said he would initiate investigations of two Muslim congresswomen, Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, over their criticisms of Israel. McCarthy called for the two to be denounced by the Democratic Party as anti-Semites after Tlaib had said that the sponsors of recent legislation intended to benefit Israel by limiting free speech “… forgot what country they represent. This is the U.S. where boycotting is a right and part of our historical fight for freedom and equality. Maybe a refresher on our U.S. Constitution is in order, then get back to opening up our government instead of taking our rights away.”

Indeed, Tlaib had a point as the Congressional Israel boosters have long since forgotten that they are supposed to uphold the Constitution of the United States while also promoting the interests of their constituents, not those of a country seven thousand miles away. Glenn Greenwald of the Intercept responded to the news of the McCarthy threat with a tweet “It’s stunning how much time US political leaders spend defending a foreign nation even if it means attacking free speech rights of Americans.” Ilhan Omar then tweeted her own pithy rejoinder to Greenwald on Sunday February 10th: “It’s all about the Benjamins, baby!” which was in reference to the Founder Benjamin Franklin’s portrait on hundred-dollar bills. Her comment was almost immediately interpreted as meaning that she was accusing McCarthy of being bought by Jews. She followed up on a question about who was doing the buying she tweeted “AIPAC,” an elaboration that unleashed something like an anti-Semitism shit storm in her direction.

It was manufactured outrage, with political leaders from both parties latching on to a media frenzy to score points against each other. Even though it is perfectly legitimate for a Congresswoman on the Foreign Affairs Committee to challenge what AIPAC does and where its money comes from, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi complained that Omar’s “use of anti-Semitic tropes and prejudicial accusations about Israel’s supporters” was “deeply offensive.” Chelsea Clinton accused Omar of “trafficking in anti-Semitism.” President Donald Trump, who has admitted that his Mideast policy is intended to serve Israeli rather than U.S. interests, also jumped in, saying “I think she should either resign from congress or she should certainly resign from the House Foreign Affairs Committee.”

Ilhan Omar quickly understood that she had touched a live wire, surrendered, and recanted. She apologized by Monday afternoon, 18 hours after her original tweet, saying “Anti-Semitism is real and I am grateful for Jewish allies and colleagues who are educating me on the painful history of anti-Semitic tropes. My intention is never to offend my constituents or Jewish Americans as a whole. We have to always be willing to step back and think through criticism, just as I expect people to hear me when others attack me for my identity. This is why I unequivocally apologize.” But she also bravely wrote “At the same time, I reaffirm the problematic role of lobbyists in our politics, whether it be AIPAC, the NRA or the fossil fuel industry. It’s gone on too long and we must be willing to address it.”

Pelosi approved of the apology. Senator Amy Klobuchar, a Democrat from Minnesota who is running for president in 2020, chimed in to make sure that everyone knew how much she loves Israel, saying “I’m glad she apologized. That was the right thing to do. There is just no room for those kinds of words. I think Israel is our beacon of democracy. I’ve been a strong supporter of Israel and that will never change.”

Two days later, a motion sponsored by Congressman Lee Zeldin of New York passed by a 424 to 0 vote. It was specifically intended to serve as a rebuke to Omar. It stated that “it is in the national security interest of the United States to combat anti-Semitism around the world because… there has been a significant amount of anti-Semitic and anti-Israel hatred that must be most strongly condemned.”

Congressional votes professing love for Israel notwithstanding, the fact is that there is a massive, generously funded effort to corrupt America’s government in favor of Israel. It is euphemistically called the Israel Lobby even though it is overwhelmingly Jewish and it boasts fairly openly of its power when talking with its closest friends about how its money influences the decisions made on Capitol Hill and in the White House. Its combined budget exceeds one billion dollars per year and it includes lobbying powerhouses like the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) which alone had $229 million in income in 2017, supporting more than 200 employees. It exists only to promote Israeli interests on Capitol Hill and throughout the United States with an army of lobbyists and its activities include using questionably legal all expenses paid “orientation” trips to Israel for all new congressmen and spouses.

McCarthy and the other stooges in Congress deliberately sought to frame the argument in terms of Ilhan Omar having claimed that he personally was receiving money from pro-Israel sources and that money influenced his voting. Well, the fact is that such activity does take place and was documented three years ago by the respected Foreign Policy Journal, which published a piece entitled “The Best Congress AIPAC can Buy” as well as more recently in an al-Jazeera investigative expose using a concealed camera.

And Kevin McCarthy does indeed receive money from Israel PACs – $33,200 in 2018. The amount individual congressmen receive is dependent on their actual or potential value to Israel. Completely corrupt and enthusiastically pro-Israel Senator Robert Menendez of New Jersey received $548,507 in 2018. In the House, Beto O’Rourke of Texas received $226,690. The numbers do not include individual contributions of under $200, which are encouraged by AIPAC and can be considerable. In general, congressmen currently receive over $23,000 on average from the major pro-Israel organizations while Senators get $77,000.

But, of course, direct donations of money are not the whole story. If a congressman is unfriendly to Israel, money moves in the other direction, towards funding an opponent when re-election is coming up. Former Rep. Brian Bard has observed that “Any member of Congress knows that AIPAC is associated indirectly with significant amounts of campaign spending if you’re with them, and significant amounts against you if you’re not with them.” Lara Friedman, who has worked on the Hill for 15 years on Israel/Palestine, notes how congressmen and staffs of “both parties told me over and over that they agreed with me but didn’t dare say so publicly for fear of repercussions from AIPAC.”

A good example of how it all worked involves one honest congressman, Walter Jones of South Carolina, who recently passed away. In 2014, “Wall Street billionaires, financial industry lobbyists, and neoconservative hawks” tried to unseat Jones by bankrolling his primary opponent. The “dark money” intended to defeat him came from a PAC called “The Emergency Committee for Israel,” headed by leading neoconservative Bill Kristol. Jones’ war views, including avoiding a war with Iran, were clearly perceived as anti-Israel.

And one should also consider contributions directly to the political parties. Israeli/U.S. dual nationals Sheldon Adelson and Haim Saban are the largest single donors to the GOP and to the Democrats, having contributed $82 million and $8,780,000 respectively in the 2016 presidential campaign. Both have indicated openly that Israel is their top priority.

If they have demonstrated fealty to Israel while in office, many Congressmen also find that loyalty pays off after retirement from government with richly remunerated second careers in Jewish dominated industries, like financial services or the media. And there are hundreds of Jewish organizations that contribute to Israel as charities, even though the money frequently goes to fund illegal activity, including the settlements. Money also is used to buy newspapers and media outlets which then adhere to a pro-Israel line, or, where that does not work, to buy advertising that is conditional on being friendly to Israel. So the bottom line is indeed “the Benjamins” and the corruption that they buy.

Karen Pollock of the Holocaust Education Trust said in January that “One person questioning the truth of the Holocaust is one too many.” That is nonsense. Any, and all, historical events should be questioned regularly, a principle that is particular true regarding developments that carry a lot of emotional baggage. The Israel Lobby would have all Americans believe that any criticism of Israel is motivated by historic hatred of Jews and is therefore anti-Semitism. Don’t believe it. When the AIPAC crowd screams that linking Jews and money is a classic anti-Semitic trope respond by pointing out that Jews and money are very much in play in the corruption of congress and the media over Israel. Terrible things are being done in the Middle East in the name of Jews and of Israel and it all comes down to those Benjamins and the silence they buy by accusing all critics of anti-Semitism. Just recall what the Israeli minister admitted, “It’s a trick, we always use it.”

February 19, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance, Wars for Israel | , , | 1 Comment

Iran’s Javad Zarif warns “risk of war with Israel is great” (MunichSecurityConference 2019)

ProductiehuisEU | February 17, 2019

Speaking in the Munich Security Conference, Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif blames Israel of violating international law after bombing campaigns in Syria, criticizes European powers for not calling out Israel and the US for their behavior in the region.

Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif accused Israel of looking for war and warned that its behavior and that of the United States was increasing the chances of a clash in the region.

“Certainly, some people are looking for war … Israel,” Zarif said at the Munich Security Conference.

Accusing Israel of violating international law after bombing campaigns in Syria, Zarif also criticized European powers for not calling out Israel and the United States for their behavior in the region.

“The risk (of war) is great. The risk will be even greater if you continue to turn a blind eye to severe violations of international law,” he said.

“Israeli behavior is putting international law on the shelf, US behavior is putting international law on the shelf.”

Zarif, who said Iran was committed to a 2015 nuclear deal with world powers for now, also accused France, Britain and Germany of not doing enough to ensure Tehran received the economic benefits of that accord.

Credit: Bayerischer Rundfunk 2019

February 17, 2019 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Illegal Occupation, Militarism, Timeless or most popular, Video | , , , , , | Leave a comment

The First Rule of AIPAC Is: You Do Not Talk about AIPAC

By Thomas L. Knapp | Garrison Center | February 15, 2019

Washington’s political establishment went berserk when US Representative Ilhan Omar (D-MN) publicly noted that US-Israel relations are “all about the Benjamins”  — slang for $100 bills, referring to money shoveled at American politicians by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).

Omar was accused of antisemitism — immediately by Republicans, shortly after by members of her own party — and bullied into apologizing. She may or may not be prejudiced against Jews,  but even if she is, that wasn’t her real offense.

Her real offense was  publicly mentioning the irrefutable fact  that many members of Congress take their marching orders from a foreign power’s lobbying apparatus (an apparatus not, as required by law, registered under the Foreign Agents Registration Act), at least partly because those marching orders come with promises of significant donations to those politicians’ campaigns.

AIPAC itself doesn’t make direct donations to political campaigns. But AIPAC and other pro-Israel lobbying groups like Christians United For Israel punch well above their weight in American politics, largely by motivating their supporters to financially support and work for “pro-Israel” candidates in general elections and help weed out “anti-Israel” candidates in party primaries.

By the way, “pro-Israel” in this context always means “supportive of the jingoism of Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud Party,” and never “supportive of the many Israelis who’d like peace with the Palestinian Arabs.”

One AIPAC supporter  alone, casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, spent $65 million getting Republicans elected, including $25 million supporting Donald Trump, in 2016.  But that $25 million was only put into action after Trump retreated from his early position of “neutrality” in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, publicly prostrated himself to AIPAC in a speech at one of its events, and pronounced himself “the most pro-Israel presidential candidate in history.”

But: We’re not supposed to talk about that. Ever. And it’s easy to see why.

If most Americans noticed that many  members of Congress (as well as most presidents) are selling their influence over US policy to a foreign power, we might do something about it.

For decades, howling “antisemitism” any time the matter came up proved an effective tactic for shutting down public discussion of the “special relationship” under which Israel receives lavish foreign aid subsidies, effective control of US foreign policy in the Middle East, and lately even state (and pending federal) legislation requiring government contractors to sign loyalty oaths to Israel’s government.

The Israeli lobby’s power to prevent that discussion seems to be slipping, however. Why? In part because the lobby’s money and political support, which used to be spent buying both sides of the partisan aisle, has begun tilting heavily Republican in recent years, freeing some Democrats to not “stay bought.” And in part because the newest generation of politicians includes some like Ilhan Omar who aren’t for sale (to Israel, anyway).

Decades of unquestioning obedience to the Israel lobby has drawn the US into needless and costly conflicts  not even remotely related to the defense of the United States. We’ll be better off when the “special relationship,” and the corruption underlying it, ends.

Thomas L. Knapp (Twitter: @thomaslknapp) is director and senior news analyst at the William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism (thegarrisoncenter.org). He lives and works in north central Florida.

February 16, 2019 Posted by | Corruption, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Wars for Israel | , , | 1 Comment