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Ruth Bader Ginsburg… If only she had supported equal rights for everyone

Ruth Bader Ginsburg receives top Israeli award in Israel, July 4, 2018.
(L-R: former Israeli Supreme Court Judges Miriam Naor & Esther Hayut; chairman of Genesis Prize Foundation Stan Polovets; RBG; former presidents of Israeli Supreme Court Aaron Barak & Dorit Beinich.)

Ruth Bader Ginsburg commanded immense respect, adulation, and influence. She spoke out against racism and discrimination, and has been called ‘a revolutionary.’

Some have written: ‘Even to the end of her life, she remained committed to our mantra: None are free, until all are free…’ Progressive groups are sending out emails about continuing ‘her legacy’ of ‘fighting for justice…’ New York is planning to erect a statue in her honor…

Imagine the impact she could have had if she’d included Palestinians in her concerns, and spoken out against Israeli violence and apartheid, instead of remaining silent and endorsing Israel – established and maintained through ethnic cleansing

By Alison Weir | If Americans Knew | September 22, 2020

Recently, Israel’s Ha’aretz newspaper, a major daily sometimes considered the New York Times of Israel, has published several eulogies to Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Ginsburg was extremely popular in Israel, and the love was returned. Former Israeli Supreme Court President Dorit Beinisch writes that Ginsburg was “a true friend of Israel.”

Ginsburg’s commitment to Israel was exemplified in 2018, when she traveled to Israel for the fifth time. The purpose of her trip was to accept, in the words of Ha’aretz, an award from an organization “snubbed earlier this year by actor Natalie Portman.”

The action by Portman, an Israeli-American star, had caused major controversy in Israel. She had turned down what has sometimes been called “Israel’s Nobel Prize.”

Portman said that recent events in Israel had been “extremely distressing,” and she did “not feel comfortable participating in any public events in Israel.” Portman said she could “not in good conscience move forward with the ceremony.”

Portman explained on Instagram that Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and Israel’s “mistreatment of those suffering from today’s atrocities” had caused her to refuse the extremely prestigious prize – and one accompanied by two million dollars.

A follow up article in Ha’aretz about the controversy showed that on the day of Portman’s Instagram post about “today’s atrocities,” a UN envoy had blasted Israel for shooting children. Israeli forces had just shot dead four Palestinians, including a 15 year old boy, and wounded 156 others. (Over the past 20 years Israeli forces have killed over 2,000 Palestinian children, while Palestinian resistance groups have killed 134 Israeli children.)

The most recent deaths had taken place during during Gaza’s massive “Great March of Return,” an unarmed uprising in Gaza against Israel’s suffocating blockade and confiscation of Palestinian land. Thousands of Gazan men, women, and children had been protesting weekly since the end of March, and Israeli forces were shooting demonstrators every week.

Portman’s rejection of the prize, and Israel’s killing of unarmed demonstrators, didn’t stop Ginsburg from accepting the award. In fact, the outspoken Ginsburg doesn’t seem to have even commented about the Portman controversy, or Israel’s daily atrocities in Gaza.

Ginsburg’s silence is particularly noteworthy given her long history of advocacy for women, and an event that occurred the day before the awards ceremony: Thousands of Palestinian women and girls in Gaza had marched in a women’s march against Israeli oppression, while a group of Israeli women marched in Israel in solidarity with them.

According to reports, the Gaza marchers included “mothers, wives, daughters and sisters of those killed and injured during the Great March of Return protests, as well as female journalists and university students.”

Gaza women’s march, July 3, 2018. (Middle East Eye )

As usually happens in such protests, Israeli forces were immediately deployed against the nonviolent demonstrators, and soldiers used live ammunition, shooting three and injuring 130.

A Palestinian woman injured by Israeli forces while she participated in the women’s march in Gaza on July 3, 2018. ((MEE/Mohammed Asad))

The next day – the day that Ginsburg was to receive the award – Ha’aretz featured an article headlined: “Israeli Women Rally From Across the Border in Solidarity With Gaza Women’s March.” The article reported: “A group of about 50 activists gathered and marched in solidarity on Israel’s side of the Gaza border Tuesday evening during the first planned women’s march of the ongoing Gaza protests.” The article featured several photos, including one of a protestor wounded by Israeli forces:

An injured women lies on a stretcher in Eastern Gaza on July 3, 2018. (Ha’aretz )

Apparently untroubled by this violence against Palestinian women, that evening Ginsburg accepted her award in an elegant ceremony in Tel Aviv. According to AP, her acceptance speech “cited Holocaust diarist Anne Frank” and “touched on [Ginsburg’s] fight for women’s rights.” AP noted that she “often cites her Jewish heritage” as a source for her “sensitivity to the plight of oppressed minorities.”

The award honored Ginsburg “for her enormous legal contribution to advancing the protection of women’s rights, the right to equality and the rights of all human beings.” The Israeli audience gave her a “rapturous reception.”

Major celebrity, cultural icon, AIPAC

One of the recent Ha’aretz articles about Ginsburg states that she was “the first Jewish candidate to sit on the court since the resignation of Justice Abe Fortas in 1969.” (Fortas, who resigned amid accusations of corruption, had helped pave the way for dual citizenship with Israel in 1967.)*

Over the years, Ginsburg has become a major celebrity. As Ha’aretz reports:

During her 27 years on the court, Ginsburg gained millions of fans and admirers around the world, and eventually became a cultural icon in the United States, the subject of movies, museum exhibitions, and books for adults and children alike. A 2019 film about her early professional life, “On the Basis of Sex,” was a modest box office hit, with actress Felicity Jones portraying the jurist. But it was the 2018 documentary about Ginsburg, “RBG,” that created a real artistic buzz, including an Academy Award nomination for best documentary.

At the same time, Ginsburg grew to be a major influence on the Supreme Court. Ha’aretz notes: “Ginsburg established herself as the de facto leader of the Supreme Court’s liberal wing. Together with justices Stephen Breyer, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor…”

One of the cases the court considered during this time concerned the notorious pro-Israel lobby organization AIPAC (American Israel Public Affairs Committee). AIPAC has long been considered the most powerful organization for a foreign country in the US.

In 1997 a federal court found that AIPAC and 27 pro-Israel political action committees were guilty of violating federal election laws. The individuals who had initiated the case were ebullient, believing that the ruling could help loosen the “stranglehold” that Israel’s lobby had on U.S. Middle East policy.

Their excitement was short lived, however. In 1999 the case went to the Supreme Court, which, with Ginsburg’s help, overturned the ruling, 6-3. Antonin Scalia wrote the dissenting opinion.

Separation of church and state?

The Jewish Forward reports: “Among the principles that were dear to Ginsburg’s heart as she presided in the Supreme Court for nearly three decades was a dedication to the separation of church and state.”

The article states: “The first Jewish woman on the Supreme Court, Ginsburg dedicated herself to assuring that Christianity was not privileged by the government above other religions.”

Yet, the Israeli system is based on a close connection between religion and the state, and there is systemic discrimination against Christians, Muslims, and non-Jews in general. As a prominent Israeli author wrote, there is “no separation of synagogue and state” in Israel.

A few weeks before Ginsburg decided to accept the Genesis award, Israel blocked hundreds of Palestinian Christians from praying at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. The month before, Christian leaders protested what they said was Israel’s flagrant attempt to “weaken the Christian presence in Jerusalem.” Such stories go on and on and on.

Changing ‘social norms’

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg with former Israeli Supreme Court President Dorit Beinisch, in Washington in 2017.  (Ha’aretz, Yaron Ron)

Former Israeli Supreme Court president Beinisch writes that Ginsburg has had historic influence:

“We often wonder how legal rulings can change social norms. These are long-term processes, and we do not always get to see the results. But Ginsburg was able to do so during her lifetime – to look back and to see her extensive influence…”

Beinisch notes:

“I cannot think of another legal figure who had such a profound influence on and awareness of the daily lives of the society in which they lived as she did, or who was as popular as she was.”

If Ginsburg had joined the many Israelis, Jewish Americans, and others of all religions, races, and ethnicities who have begun to speak out against Israel’s long documented human rights abuses, and in affirmation of Palestinian rights, there seems little doubt that she could have had a significant impact. Yet, she remained silent.

But it’s not too late for others. When people proclaim that no one is free until everyone is free, they can truly mean everyone, including Palestinians.

Three years ago Kathryn Shihadah wrote an in-depth analysis of Ginsburg that provides much essential information:

Ruth Bader Ginsburg: at 84, where does she get her PEP (Progressive Except Palestine)?

by Kathryn Shihadah

The iconic and even trending  Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg (lovingly known to fans as Notorious RBG or Ruth Badass Ginsburg) came this close to receiving the 2018 Genesis Prize, aka the “Jewish Nobel,” awarded yearly to Jews who have attained excellence and recognition in their fields, and who inspire others in their dedication to the Jewish community, Jewish values, and the State of Israel.

The award comes with a $1 million payout, and there, as they say, was the rub.

Ha’aretz reports that the prize was taken away from Ginsburg (and given to Natalie Portman) because the committee’s legal advisor discovered a rule against awarding monetary prizes to US judges. She had already decided to donate half of her prize money to women’s groups in the US, and the other half to equivalent organizations in Israel. Apparently her office had even contacted the groups and told them they had some big bucks coming their way.

Well, the charities got stiffed, but Ginsburg got a consolation prize: a new and prestigious award was created for her – the Genesis Prize for Lifetime Achievement. She will receive the award during a ceremony next summer.

Does Ginsburg meet all of the qualifications for a Genesis award? She has indeed attained excellence and recognition; no doubt she has been an inspiration – to Jews and Gentiles alike – as she has beaten the odds and risen to the very top of her field. Is she “dedicated to Jewish community, Jewish values, and the Jewish State”?  Let’s do some sleuthing to find out.

A little background

Ginsburg was born on March 15th, 1933 in Brooklyn, New York.  She fought her way past gender discrimination (one of 9 women in a class of 500 at Harvard Law School) and became only the second female and the sixth Jewish justice to be appointed to the Supreme Court.

Religiously, Ginsburg became non-observant when, at her mother’s death, she saw up close the second-class role of women in Orthodox Judaism. She has worked tirelessly for women’s rights throughout her distinguished career.

Though she is secular, Ginsburg has always cherished her Jewish identity:

My heritage as a Jew and my occupation as a judge fit together symmetrically. The demand for justice runs through the entirety of Jewish history and Jewish tradition. I take pride in and draw strength from my heritage, as signs in my chambers attest: a large silver mezuzah on my door post, [and the Hebrew words] from Deuteronomy: “Zedek, zedek, tirdof” — “Justice, justice shall you pursue.”

Check the box  marked “Jewish values.”

Moving on to “Jewish community,” just look back to last September. Ms. Ginsburg surprised members of a Washington DC synagogue when she came to speak at their Rosh Hashanah service. She talked about faith, about her fellow Jewish justices over the years and the views they have shared. She reminded worshipers that “the Jewish religion is an ethical religion. That is, we are taught to do right, to love mercy, do justice.” And she remarked that their shared experience as Jews makes them compassionate: “If you are a member of a minority group, particularly a minority group that has been picked on, you have empathy for others who are similarly situated.”

Ginsburg has pursued justice wholeheartedly all her life, and has throughout her career advocated for progressive causes. In 1972, she co-founded the Women’s Rights Project at the ACLU, and fought more than 300 gender discrimination cases between 1973 and 1974.

But these admirable convictions we see in Ginsburg that are common among many Americans – empathy toward the marginalized, advocacy for defenseless – suddenly evaporate in certain situations. Perhaps it’s subconscious, but there lurks another loyalty ready to override the cause of true justice and compassion. Ruth Bader Ginsburg is among the many influential members of the P.E.P. Club: Progressive Except Palestine.

For someone dedicated to liberty and justice for all, she is resoundingly silent on the issue of Palestine. Nowhere in her recently published collection of writings, My Own Words, do the words “Palestine” or “Palestinian” appear. Even “Arab” is nowhere to be found, although she discusses the Holocaust, Zionism, and Israel.

Ginsburg was poised to donate $500,000 to women’s organizations in Israel, a country which – surely she has heard – has been flagrantly violating the human rights of Palestinians for decades, denying them the most basic justice. This is a country in which many rock stars fear to book a concert, lest they be ostracized by the moral majority for pandering to an apartheid state – but Ginsburg was about to drop a cool half a mil.

“Zedek, zedek, tirdof” – “Justice, justice shall you pursue”…except Palestine?

Well, at least we can check the most important box of all: the one marked “dedication to the State of Israel.”

This leaning is no surprise, given Ginsburg’s admiration for one particular former US Supreme Court justice.

The Honorable Louis Brandeis

Ruth Bader Ginsburg is a big fan of the Supreme Court’s first Jewish justice, Louis Dembitz Brandeis. Brandeis is revered today as a great judge, but at the time of his appointment – 1916 – he was recognized by some as “unscrupulous” in his methods and at times “unethical” in his behavior.

Distinguished historian Bruce Allen Murphy revealed that Brandeis was involved in some covert pursuits for many years, both before and during his time on the Supreme Court. The fact that he and his primary cohort, Felix Frankfurter, kept their work secret indicates that they knew it was – or at least looked – unethical.

Brandeis’ endeavors included (but were not limited to) advancing the Zionist agenda, both in the US and internationally. Murphy describes his work in general as “part of a vast, carefully planned and orchestrated political crusade.”

Israeli professor Dr. Sarah Schmidt described a clandestine society of which Brandeis was a part: “a secret underground guerilla force determined to influence the course of events in a quiet, anonymous way.” The most ambitious young Jewish men were recruited for the work. Their secret initiation ceremony included the charge:

You are about to take a step which will bind you to a single cause for all your life…[Y]ou will be fellow of a brotherhood whose bond you will regard as greater than any other in your life – dearer than that of family, of school, of nation. By entering this brotherhood, you become a self-dedicated soldier in the army of Zion. Your obligation to Zion becomes your paramount obligation…It is the wish of your heart and of your own free will to join our fellowship, to share its duties, its tasks, and its necessary sacrifices.

Brandeis also served as president of the Provisional Executive Committee for Zionist Affairs – essentially the leader of the world’s Zionists. He spent several months during 1914 – 1915 on a speaking tour to build a network of support for the “Jewish homeland,” underscoring the goals of self-determination and freedom.

In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson named Brandeis to the Supreme Court. As required, Brandeis officially resigned from his formal affiliations, including stepping down from his leadership role in Zionism. However, he zealously continued his work on a more informal basis, even from his Supreme Court chambers. Later, he would persuade the next 2 Jewish justices – Cardozo and Frankfurter – to join the ranks of the Zionist Organization of America, assuring a continued, subtle partiality toward the Jewish project.

Brandeis is tapped

In fact, Brandeis remained so deeply involved in Zionism that he was chosen by a leader of the movement for a very important job: that of, possibly, helping to turn the tide of World War I for the British.

Great Britain was in desperate need of an ally in the war, and the Zionists were in need of an ally in their quest for a homeland. Brandeis was tasked with delivering the United States as an ally to Great Britain; Great Britain would reimburse the Zionists with the Balfour Declaration.

Samuel Landman, secretary of the World Zionist Organization, claimed in a 1936 article in World Jewry, that it was “Jewish help that brought USA into the war on the side of the Allies.” The goal was not victory for the Allies, but real estate in Palestine, so Brandeis and associate Felix Frankfurter reportedly worked to ensure the war would last until Palestine was in the bag. They even reportedly sabotaged a potential opportunity to end the war in May 1917 (18 months early), which would have saved much destruction and many lives, including Brandeis’ fellow Americans.

Eventually, of course, Germany was defeated. According to historian Henry Wickham Steed, one of Germany’s top generals considered the Balfour Declaration to be “the cleverest thing done by the Allies in the way of propaganda,” and wished Germany had thought of it first. 

Landman further stated that Germany was aware of the Jewish connection, and, chillingly, this “contributed in no small measure to the prominence which anti-Semitism occupie[d] in the Nazi program” only a few decades later. This horrific irony can not be overstated.

“Never again”

Ruth Bader Ginsburg spoke of those days in 2004 at the Holocaust Memorial Museum:

Hitler’s Europe, his Holocaust Kingdom, was not lawless. Indeed, it was a kingdom full of laws, laws deployed by highly educated people—teachers, lawyers, and judges—to facilitate oppression, slavery, and mass murder. We convene to say “Never again,” not only to Western history’s most unjust regime, but also to a world in which good men and women, abroad and even in the USA, witnessed or knew of the Holocaust Kingdom’s crimes against humanity, and let them happen…

In striving to drain dry the waters of prejudice and oppression, we must rely…upon the wisdom of our laws and the decency of our institutions, upon our reasoning minds and our feeling hearts. And as a constant spark to carry on, upon our vivid memories of the evils we wish to banish from our world.

And indeed, Ginsburg has famously spent years of her life checking America’s laws against the rubric of our Constitution to banish what evil she can from America.

But as a highly intelligent woman, in the Information Age, is it even remotely possible that she is not aware of the opinions of progressive Jewish anti-Zionist voices from the time of Brandeis, like Alfred Lilienthal and Rabbi Elmer Berger, or the historians of our time who have brought to light the folly of early Zionism, like Noam ChomskyNorman Finkelstein, and Ilan Pappé? (The Palestinian historians who first wrote about this, sadly, are less likely to have shown up on her radar.)

Can she not know about the displacement of 750,000 Palestinians in the Nakba? Or the Deir Yassin massacre? Or a hundred other stories of injustice imposed on a people because of where they lived by another people who had been mistreated because of what they believed?

To be passionate about justice and yet ignore this gross injustice requires a studied unconcern. “Progressive Except Palestine” has mentors in the highest places, and Ginsburg has a friend who may be among the best.

Meet Aharon Barak

Former Israeli supreme court president Aharon Barak, partly educated at Harvard, talks some good talk, the kind that would resonate with Americans:

Democracy has its own internal morality, based on the dignity and equality of all human beings…Most central of all human rights is the right to dignity. It is the source from which all other human rights are derived.

[E]quality is a fundamental value of every democratic society…. The feeling of the lack of equality is the most difficult of feelings. It undermines the forces that unite society.

And he discusses his home country in language that sounds relatable:

The State of Israel is a State whose values are Jewish and democratic. Here we have established a State that preserves law, that achieves its national goals and the vision of generations, and that does so while recognizing and realizing human rights in general and human dignity in particular. Between these two there are harmony and accord, not conflict and estrangement.

The Israeli legal system is a young system, albeit one with deep historical roots that reflect its Jewish values. It is a legal system that guards its democratic nature despite the existential struggle it has faced since its founding.

No wonder Ginsburg and Barak are close: they share a deep reverence for democracy, and for the Jewish values they like to believe are inherent in their respective countries’ justice systems.

But Barak sees the Israeli court, and Israel itself, as an exceptional world. It is not a simple, safe democracy like America, but a “defensive democracy” that fights daily for its very survival. Barak lives under the delusion that nuclear-capable, Iron-Dome, cruise-missile, armored-personnel-carrier Israel, is under constant “existential threat” from rock-throwing, homemade-missile-launching, underfed Palestinians. Israel was created through ethnic cleansing and is maintained through illegal occupation and blockade, and when Palestinians legally exercise their right to resist, Barak sees this as “terrorism.”

Barak wrote in the Preface to his Yale Law School Faculty Scholarship Series article, “The Role of a Supreme Court in a Democracy,”

we have recognized the power of the state to protect its security and the security of its citizens on the one hand; on the other hand, we have emphasized that the rights of every individual must be preserved, including the rights of the individual suspected of being a terrorist (sic).

It sounds so ethical, but Gideon Spiro knew better and wrote eloquently about “The Barak Method”:

No doubt about it: Barak has succeeded in creating around him a “human-rights man” aura even outside Israel. This is a huge propaganda feat…considering that Barak is, to a large extent, the judicial designer, enabler and backer of the regime of human-rights abuses in the Occupied Territories. [He] legitimized almost all the injustices of the occupation. He has led Israel’s judicial system into the role of indentured servant to the security forces – the IDF, the Shin Bet (domestic secret service), the Mossad and the settlers.

Barak’s time on the bench is replete with examples of Supreme Court benevolence toward individuals suspected of being terrorists (i.e. pretty much every Palestinian who set foot in his courtroom). One such example happened in 1992.

Mass Deportation

Hamas had killed six Israeli soldiers, and in retaliation, the IDF arrested, blindfolded, and deported 415 Palestinians (believed to be Hamas members) to Lebanon.

Human rights organizations immediately petitioned the Israeli Supreme Court – Barak was on call that night – and testimony was heard. It was pointed out that the men had not been given a hearing before the deportation.

The Court ruled: Israel must grant the deportees a hearing – but it would take place a month later.

The deportees spent the month in freezing winter weather. The Red Cross asked to bring them medical aid, but Israel refused. The UN Security Council condemned the mass deportation (full text here).

On January 17, 1993, the hearing in Israel began. A few days later, the Israeli Supreme Court found – unanimously – that in one sense, the deportation orders were not valid, but in another sense, the orders were valid. (Obviously, this is a simplification; find details here and here.)

Punitive house demolition

Another area in which Aharon Barak labored to find the alleged balance between security and human rights is in the area of house demolition. His court recognized the need for proportionality, and concluded that “only when human life has been lost is it permissible to destroy the buildings where the terrorists lived.”

A relative of Abdelrahman Shaludi, a Palestinian who killed two Israelis last month, displays his portrait inside his family home after it was destroyed by Israel in E. Jerusalem. Nov. 19, 2014.

Back in the real world…

House demolition is a violation of international law, and in many cases is collective punishment, which according to the Fourth Geneva Convention, is a war crime. In spite of this – and in spite of the fact that it may actually incite violence instead of deterring it – the practice continues, sanctioned by Israel’s highest court. Nearly 50,000 structures have been demolished since 1967, according to ICHAD, the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions.

Administrative detention

The struggle was real for Barak and the rest of the Israeli Supreme Court on the issue of administrative detention – holding people for months or years without even charging them with a crime. Once again, they had to choose between protecting fundamental human rights of the individual  or protecting “national security.”

They went with national security. And so the practice of administrative detention continues unchecked: Palestinians are arrested without charge and detained for 6 months; their case undergoes “judicial review,” in which a judge looks at their file (without representation from the detainee) and often approves another 6-month term, and another, and another. Some have been held for years. During Barak’s reign, well over a thousand Palestinians were held under administrative detention.

Since 1967, Israeli forces have arrested over 800,000 Palestinians – almost 20% of the Palestinian population. About 40% of the male Palestinians in the occupied territories have been arrested at least once.

The separation (aka apartheid) wall

It was on Aharon Barak’s watch that construction of the Wall was begun. Correction: “security fence to prevent terror.” The damage done by this “fence” – confiscating Palestinian land, cutting off children from their schools, patients from their doctors, workers from their jobs, families from each other, farmers from their land – this is what Barak termed “proportionate damage.” In 2004 and 2005 he and his Court dropped a few crumbs for the Palestinians in the form of rulings to alter the route of the wall a bit, but at no point did they address the legality of the wall itself.

The rest of the world, however, did address the issue. In 2004, the UN Security Council called on Israel to abide by international law; the General Assembly called on the International Court of Justice to rule on the wall. The ICJ complied, in 2004 finding the wall to be in violation of international law. The Israeli Supreme Court chose, as usual, to ignore near global condemnation, Barak himself claiming “factual superiority” over the ICJ.

Extrajudicial executions (aka targeted killing)

The final verdict of Aharon Barak’s career, the cherry on top of his years of whatever-that-was, looked just like the others. It was all about balance. Harm – even death – to civilians is permitted if there was no better way to manage the situation; harm must be proportionate, that is the civilian “damage” must be comparable to the military advantage achieved. In Barak’s own decisive words, “we cannot determine that a preventative strike is always legal, just as we cannot determine that it is always illegal.” So, kill if you must, and fall on the mercy of the Court (wink, wink).

Torture (aka moderate physical pressure)

Aharon Barak had a few words on the issue of torture, which Justice Ginsburg found compelling. She explained in a recent interview:

The police think that a suspect they have apprehended knows where and when a bomb is going to go off…Can the police use torture to extract that information? And in an eloquent decision by Aharon Barak, then the chief justice of Israel, the court said: ‘Torture? Never.’

Barak himself elaborated: “They act against the law, by violating and trampling it, while in its war against terrorism, a democratic state acts within the framework of the law and according to the law.”

An Israeli Peace activist demonstrate a torture techniques used by Shin Bet interrogators against Palestinian prisoners.

But once again, the actions of the State speak louder than the words of the Court.

The ruling to which Ginsburg referred left a “narrow opening for torture: a defense of “necessity,” which allows for interrogators, during “extraordinary circumstances” (for example, in a “ticking time bomb scenario,” when innocent lives, according to Israeli officials, are believed to be in the balance), to independently choose to break the no-torture law. Later, if torturers are taken to court for it, they may use the “necessity defense.”)

That “narrow opening” has proved to be wide and welcoming.

According to a 2016 Ha’aretz article, over 1,000 complaints of torture have been registered against Israel’s General Security Service, Shin Bet, since 2001. Not a single criminal investigation has ever been launched by the one investigator that the department employs.

It has been reported that 70-90% of the time, detained men, women and children are not permitted to speak to anyone – including a lawyer – until they have confessed. And once that confession has been obtained, whether it is genuine or not, there is no recanting.

Caution: PEP causes selective blindness

While Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has done great things for women and minorities, and is no doubt a woman of compassion and conscience, she shows all of the symptoms of P.E.P. Prognosis: if the anti-BDS law (Israel calls BDS an “Israel de-legitimization program”) comes before the Supreme Court, will she uphold it, limiting our free speech and support for human rights? Or if the Taylor Force Act comes up for judicial review – the law which would effectively deprive Palestinian widows of their “survivor benefits” (Israeli hasbara calls it a “terrorism incentivizing program”), would Ginsburg sympathize with women and orphans when they are Palestinian?

It is likely that she has seen reports of the humanitarian crisis in Gaza and the rampant and illegal settlement-building in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, but there is no indication that these issues have penetrated her consciousness. If they had, one expects she would be in a moral quandary –what does one do with a lifetime of unexposed bias when light finally shines on it?

Conclusion

Lady Justice is the traditional symbol of our judicial systems. Her attributes include a blindfold – to represent impartiality and a total absence of bias; a balance – to represent the weighing of the evidence as the only source of a decision of guilt or innocence; and a sword – to represent the authority of the court, and the swiftness of the meting out of justice.

“Progressive Except Palestine” is, sadly, a reality for too many people of all faiths and and people of no faith. The result? Where justice ought to be applied impartially, objectivity becomes impossible when Israel is part of the equation. Where guilt or innocence should be determined based on evidence, the label “terrorist” makes guilt a foregone conclusion. And where justice should be meted out swiftly, only injustice seems to move at that pace.

And when one of America’s Supreme Court justices is complicit in this, there is little hope of improvement.


* The situation has progressed substantially since Ginsburg’s 1993 appointment, when she was the only Jewish member of the Supreme Court. In recent years five of the nine Supreme Court justices have been minorities, including three Jewish justices, and If Obama’s nomination had gone through, there would have been four, while none of the Justices have been Protestant Christians, the largest religious group in the US – a situation that some felt was worthy of comment.


Alison Weir is executive director of If Americans Knew, president of the Council for the National Interest, and author of Against Our Better Judgment: The Hidden History of How the U.S. Was Used to Create Israel.

Kathryn Shihadah is a staff writer for If Americans Knew.

September 22, 2020 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Progressive Hypocrite | , , , , | Leave a comment

Pro-Women’s Rights Supreme Court Judge Ruth Ginsburg Utterly Ignored Palestinian Genocide

By Gideon Polya | Dissident Voice | September 20, 2020

On the occasion of the death of the remarkable, pro-women’s rights US Supreme Court judge but fervent supporter of genocidally racist Zionism, Ruth Bader Ginsburg (RBG), one notes that in her outstanding over 60 year career she was utterly silent about the human rights of Palestinians, and that  women and children are 75% of the 14 million sorely oppressed Palestinians, the 7 million Exiled Palestinians, the 8 million Palestinian refugees, the 5 million Occupied Palestinians with zero human rights in the military-guarded Gaza Concentration Camp (2 million) and West Bank ghettoes (3 million), and the 2 million Palestinian Israelis living as Third Class citizens of Apartheid Israel under over 60 race-based laws.

Genocidally racist American and British Zionists played a key role in the Balfour Declaration and the defeat of Germany in WW1 that had the dreadful consequences of Nazi German anti-Jewish anti-Semitism, WW2, the WW2 Jewish Holocaust (5-6 million Jews killed through violence or deprivation) and the ongoing Palestinian Genocide (2.2 million Palestinian  deaths from violence, 0.1 million, or from imposed deprivation, 2.1 million, since the Australia-assisted British invasion of the oil-rich Middle East in 1914).1

Silence is complicity. Kathryn Shihadah has written about these horrendous historical realities and has described Judge Ginsburg’s Palestinian Genocide-complicit silence as “Progressive Except Palestine” (PEP) (2017): “Ginsburg [first Jewish woman on the US Supreme Court] has pursued justice wholeheartedly all her life, and has throughout her career advocated for progressive causes. In 1972, she co-founded the Women’s Rights Project at the ACLU, and fought more than 300 gender discrimination cases between 1973 and 1974. But these admirable convictions we see in Ginsburg that are common among many Americans – empathy toward the marginalized, advocacy for defenseless – suddenly evaporate in certain situations. Perhaps it’s subconscious, but there lurks another loyalty ready to override the cause of true justice and compassion. Ruth Bader Ginsburg is among the many influential members of the P.E.P. Club: Progressive Except Palestine. For someone dedicated to liberty and justice for all, she is resoundingly silent on the issue of Palestine. Nowhere in her recently published collection of writings, My Own Works , do the words ‘Palestine’ or ‘Palestinian’ appear. Even ‘Arab’ is nowhere to be found, although she discusses the Holocaust, Zionism, and Israel.”

Kathryn Shihadah has further commented on the malignant impact of Zionist US Supreme Court judges on WW1, WW2, the Jewish Holocaust and the Zionist invasion of Palestine (2017): “Ruth Bader Ginsburg is [was] a big fan of the Supreme Court’s first Jewish justice, Louis Dembitz Brandeis. Brandeis is revered today as a great judge, but at the time of his appointment – 1916 – he was recognized by some as ‘unscrupulous’ in his methods and at times ‘unethical’ in his behaviour… In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson named Brandeis to the Supreme Court. As required, Brandeis officially resigned from his formal affiliations, including stepping down from his leadership role in Zionism. However, he zealously continued his work on a more informal basis, even from his Supreme Court chambers. Later, he would persuade the next 2 Jewish justices – Cardozo and Frankfurter – to join the ranks of the Zionist Organization of America, assuring a continued, subtle partiality toward the Jewish project… Samuel Landman, secretary of the World Zionist Organization, claimed in a 1936 article in World Jewry, that it was ‘Jewish help that brought USA into the war on the side of the Allies.’ The goal was not victory for the Allies, but real estate in Palestine, so Brandeis and associate Felix Frankfurter reportedly worked to ensure the war would last until Palestine was in the bag. They even reportedly sabotaged a potential opportunity to end the war in May 1917 (18 months early), which would have saved much destruction and many lives, including Brandeis’ fellow Americans. Eventually, of course, Germany was defeated. According to historian Henry Wickham Steed, one of Germany’s top generals considered the Balfour Declaration to be ‘the cleverest thing done by the Allies in the way of propaganda,’ and wished Germany had thought of it first. Landman further stated that Germany was aware of the Jewish connection, and, chillingly, this ‘contributed in no small measure to the prominence which anti-Semitism occupie[d] in the Nazi program’ only a few decades later. This horrific irony can not be overstated.”2

Seen in the light of this appalling history, at a personal level for me another ultimate consequence of malignant racist Zionism was the extermination of all but a dozen of my family in the ethnic cleansing of Jews from Hungary in 1944-1945. It is now too late to tell the famed human rights advocate but shamefully pro-Zionist and Palestinian human rights-ignoring Ruth Bader Ginsburg that silence is complicity.

Below is a 50-item  summary of a century of horrors inflicted upon the Palestinians but utterly ignored by famed, pro-human rights, Jewish American Supreme Court judge, Ruth Bader Ginsburg:

(1). The ongoing Palestinian Genocide  has been associated with 2.2 million Palestinian deaths from violence, 0.1 million, or from imposed deprivation, 2.1 million, since the British invasion of the Middle East in WW1.

(2). Eminent International law expert Professor Francis Boyle (University of Illinois) has stated: “The Palestinians have been the victims of genocide as defined by the 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, under which a government can be guilty of genocide even if it intends to destroy a mere “part” of the group”.

(3). Of 14 million Palestinians (75% women and children),  7 million are Exiled from Palestine, 5 million are Occupied Palestinians highly abusively confined under military rule to the Gaza Concentration Camp (2 million)  or to West Bank ghettoes (3 million), and nearly 2 million are Palestinian Israelis living as Third Class citizens  under over 60 Nazi-style, race-based laws.

(4). In  1880 there were 25,000 Jews (mostly immigrants) and  500,000 Indigenous Arab Palestinians living in Palestine.

(5). The Palestinian Genocide commenced with the famine deaths of 100,000 Palestinians associated with conquest of Palestine in WW1 by the British and the Australian  and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC).

(6). Palestine became disposable British ”property” with the 1916 Sykes Picot Agreement that divided the oil-rich Middle East between the UK and France.

(7). The notorious Balfour Declaration from racist Lord Balfour to Zionist Lord Rothschild (2 November 1917) was sent only 2 days after the Australian cavalry charge victory over the Turks at Beersheba, Palestine  (31 October 1917).

(8). The draft of the Balfour Declaration was strongly opposed by anti-racist Jewish British Government Minister Sir Edwin Montagu (only the second British Jew to enter the British Cabinet) as a grave injustice  to the Indigenous Palestinians, and as “anti-Semitic and in result will prove a rallying ground for Anti-Semites in every country in the world”. Australia’s anti-racist Jewish Governor General Sir Isaac Isaacs, the first Australian-born Governor General,  was also resolutely anti-Zionist.

(9).  Orthodox Jewish rabbis, most notably the outstanding German rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch (after whom my great grandfather was named), were resolutely opposed to Zionism.

(10). Fervently pro-Zionist Jewish British historian Professor Sir Martin Gilbert in a book on WW1 stated that the Balfour Declaration was offered as an inducement for Zionist Communists to keep Russia in WW1. Professor Martin Gilbert has documented about 20 suggested locations around the world for a Jewish state, and indeed genocidal racist Theodor Herzl (the founder of Zionism) suggested Argentina as an alternative to Palestine.

(11). The violent killing of Indigenous Palestinians commenced with the 10 December 1918 Surafend Massacre by Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) soldiers in which about 100 Palestinian villagers were massacred.

(12). Genocidally racist American and British Zionists played a key role in the Balfour Declaration and the defeat of Germany in WW1 that had the dreadful consequences of Nazi German anti-Jewish anti-Semitism, the horrors of WW2, the WW2 Jewish Holocaust (5-6 million Jews killed through violence or deprivation), the ongoing Palestinian Genocide and the ongoing, US-imposed Muslim Holocaust and Muslim Genocide.

(13). Zionists contributed to the WW2 Jewish Holocaust by collaborating with the Nazis before and during WW2,  and opposing Jewish refugees finding sanctuary anywhere except Palestine.

(14). In 2020 there are 13.9 million Israeli subjects, these   comprising 6.6 million Jewish Israelis, 1.9 million Indigenous Palestinian Israelis, 5 million Occupied Palestinians, and 0.4 million non-Jewish and non-Arab  Israeli subjects. Jewish Israelis are a 47% minority of the subjects of Apartheid Israel, and Indigenous Palestinians are  50% of Apartheid Israeli subjects.

(15). UN General Assembly Resolution 3246 (29 November 1974) states in part: “7.  Strongly condemns all Governments which do not recognize the right to self-determination and independence of peoples under colonial and foreign domination and alien subjugation, notably the peoples of Africa and the Palestinian people”.

(16). 90% of Palestine has now been ethnically cleansed of Indigenous Palestinian  inhabitants in an ongoing war criminal ethnic cleansing that has been repeatedly condemned by the UN and most recently by UN Security Council Resolution 2334 that was unanimously supported except for a remarkable Obama US abstention.

(17). Apartheid Israel has also annexed and ethnically cleansed a small part of Lebanon and a large part of  Syria.

(18). There are 8 million Palestinian refugees, 7 million Exiled Palestinians, 5 million Occupied Palestinians, and 1.9 million Israeli Palestinians, with  all of these 14 million Palestinians variously excluded from all or part of Palestine, a land known as such for about 2,500 years after the Philistine coastal inhabitants of circa 1,000 BCE.

(19). 5 million Occupied Palestinians have zero (0) of the human rights set out in the 30 Articles of the Universal Charter of Human Rights.

(20). Nearly 2 million Palestinian Israelis live as Third Class citizens  under over 60 Nazi-style race-based discriminatory laws and under threat of further genocidal mass expulsion.

(21). Despite massive and deadly imposed deprivation and  repeated episodes of genocidal mass expulsion (800,000 in the 1948 Nakba or catstrophe and 400,000 in the 1967 Naksa or setback), Indigenous Palestinians today  represent 50% of the subjects of Apartheid Israel  (the ruling Jewish Israelis  represent a 47% minority).

(22). 73% of the Indigenous Palestinian subjects of Apartheid Israel cannot vote for the government ruling them i.e. they are subject to egregious Apartheid that has been described by anti-racist Jewish and non-Jewish South African anti-Apartheid heroes as worse than Apartheid in South Africa.

(23).  Dr  H. F. Verwoerd (Prime Minister of South Africa from 1958 until his assassination in 1966 and  the “Architect of Apartheid” in South Africa) at the UN (1961): “Israel is not consistent in its new anti-apartheid attitude… they took Israel away from the Arabs after the Arabs lived there for a thousand years. In that, I agree with them. Israel, like South Africa, is an apartheid state.”

(24). The “GDP per capita” is  US$42,000 for Apartheid Israel but a deadly $3,000 for Occupied Palestinians.

(25). 50% of the egregiously mal-treated  Occupied Palestinians are children and 75%  are women and children.

(26). In the 21st century each year an average of about 550 Occupied Palestinians have been killed violently by Apartheid Israel, and a further average of about 4,200 have died annually from imposed deprivation.

(27). In the 21st century there have been 1,615 non-terrorism Israeli deaths from homicide by Israelis, 164 Israeli deaths from terrorism in Israel (excluding Jerusalem), 1,183 further Israeli deaths from terrorism elsewhere in Zionist-ruled Palestine, 9,505 Occupied Palestinian deaths by Israelis, and 72,000 Occupied Palestinian avoidable deaths from imposed deprivation (2017 estimates).

(28). In the period 1920 – February 2017 there were 3,847 Israeli/Zionist  deaths from Palestinian violence as compared to about 100,000 Palestinians violently killed by Zionists and about 2 million Palestinians dying from imposed deprivation.

(29). In the 21st century each year an average of 70 Zionists are killed by Palestinians versus 550 Palestinians violently killed by Apartheid Israel,  and  through imposed deprivation, each year Apartheid Israel passively  murders about 2,700 under-5 year old Palestinian  infants and passively murders 4,200 Occupied Palestinians in general who die avoidably from deprivation each year. under Israeli Apartheid.

(30). There is a circa 10 year life expectancy gap between Occupied Palestinians and Israelis, this grossly violating Articles 55 and 56 of the Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War that demand that an Occupier must provide life-sustaining food and medical services to the Occupied subjects “to the fullest extent of the means available to it”.

(31). UN experts have recently described conditions in the illegally blockaded and regularly shelled and bombed Gaza Concentration Camp as verging on the  “unliveable”.

(32). Apartheid Israel has attacked 13 countries and  occupied 5, whereas Iran that Apartheid Israel threatens with nuclear destruction has not invaded another country for 1,300 years (i.e. from the time of the Sassanian Empire).

(33). Arabic has been the main language of Palestine for 1,400 years, and Indigenous Palestinians are 50% of the subjects of Apartheid Israel. However Arabic was relegated to merely a “special language” in the recent Nazi-style Apartheid Israeli “Jewish Nation State Legislation”.

(34). In its genocidal treatment of the Palestinians, US-, UK-, Canada-, France- , EU- and Australia-backed Apartheid Israel ignores numerous UN General Assembly Resolutions and UN Security Council Resolutions, the UN Genocide Convention, the Geneva Convention, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Rights of the Child Convention, the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, the UN Refugee Convention, the UN Convention on Apartheid,  and many other aspects of International Law.

(35). Apartheid Israel has violently invaded the territory of 13 countries (this including planes and ships, to whit Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Palestine, Jordan, Turkey, Iraq, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Uganda, Tunisia, and the US (the attack on the USS Liberty in 1967 that killed 34 and wounded 171), and has occupied the territory of 5 other countries, namely  Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Palestine, and Jordan.

(36). The 1950-2005  avoidable deaths (excess deaths) from deprivation in 5 countries variously occupied by Apartheid Israeli total 24 million.

(37). Of  5 million Occupied Palestinians (half of them children), many are routinely blackmailed through imprisonment, torture or denial of life-saving medical care to spy on fellow Palestinians for Apartheid Israel.

(38). 5 million Occupied Palestinians (half of them children) are excluded by armed military check points from Jews-only areas and Jews-only roads.

(39). 50% of Israeli children are physically, psychologically or sexually abused each year,  but 100% of Occupied Palestinian children are subject to traumatizing human rights abuse by the serial war criminal Israel Defence Force (IDF) through actual or threatened deadly violence.

(40). With continuing deadly blockade and after repeated, large-scale  destruction of homes, schools, hospitals and infrastructure, conditions in the Gaza Concentration Camp are appalling. Only about 30 Israelis gave ever been killed by home-made Gaza rockets but the grossly disproportionate Israeli bombing and shelling reprisals have devastated densely populated  Gaza, and killed 4,600 and wounded about 20,000, most disastrously  in 2008-2009 and in 2014.

(41). Since March 2018 the Israelis have  killed about 200 unarmed Palestinians  and wounded about 20,000  more  out of scores of thousands of unarmed Occupied Palestinians protesting the Occupation weekly in Gaza (in  the 1960 Sharpeville Massacre in Apartheid South Africa police killed 69 demonstrators  and wounded 220 more).

(42). Apartheid Israel backed Apartheid South Africa and was variously complicit in the Guatemalan Mayan Genocide, the Sri Lanka Tamil Genocide, the Myanmar Rohingya Genocide, the Iraqi Genocide and the US-backed neo-Nazi Ukrainian Revolution.

(43). In repeated recent elections  6.6 million Jewish Israelis have overwhelmingly supported  Apartheid, Occupation and the ongoing Palestinian Genocide.

(44). Apartheid Israel reportedly has up to 400 nuclear weapons, has 6 German-supplied submarine launch platforms, and helped Apartheid South Africa acquire nuclear weapons.

(45). Jewish Israelis overwhelmingly derive from Yemeni, Berber and Khazar converts to Judaism whereas it is actually the Indigenous Palestinians who are the descendants  of the Jewish and non-Jewish inhabitants of Palestine at the time of that wonderful, Aramaic-speaking, Palestinian humanitarian, Jesus.

(46). Molecular biological and linguistic studies variously reveal that the Ashkenazim (the minority ruling Apartheid Israel) derive from Khazar converts to Judaism in the first millennium CE, and that there is a  substantial prehistoric European ancestry amongst Ashkenazi maternal lineages.

(47). Zionist leaders from genocidal racists Theodor Herzl (Palestinian Genocide) and Winston Churchill (WW2 Bengali Holocaust) to genocidally racist Israeli prime ministers from David  Ben Gurion to Benjamin Netanyahu have uttered deeply racist and indeed genocidal comments about Palestinians that would be totally unacceptable in the “politically correct Western democracies  that back Apartheid Israel.3

(48). President John  F. Kennedy and his brother Robert Kennedy unsuccessfully sought registration of Zionists as agents of a foreign power. Successive  US administrations became beholden to the Zionists after Apartheid Israel acquired nuclear weapons by 1967 with French and US help.

(49). Successive US administrations have committed $6 trillion to Zionist-backed wars in which 32 million Muslims have died from violence (5 million) or deprivation (27 million) in 20 countries invaded by the US Alliance since the US government’s 9-11 false flag atrocity that killed 3,000 people.

(50). Over 30 million Americans have died preventably since 9-11 from “lifestyle  choice” and “political choice” reasons. Thus successive US administrations have committed $6 trillion to killing over 30 million Muslims abroad instead of trying to keep 30 million Americans alive at home.

  1. For a detailed and documented analysis of the horrendous death toll in a century of Zionist-promoted wars and attendant holocausts and genocides see Gideon Polya, US-Imposed Post-9/11 Muslim Holocaust & Muslim Genocide, 400 pages, Korsgaard Publishing, Germany, 4 June 2020; and Gideon Polya, “Racist Mainstream ignores US-Imposed Post-9/11 Muslim Holocaust & Muslim Genocide,” Countercurrents, 17 July 2020. []
  2. See Kathryn  Shihadah, “Ruth Bader Ginsburg: at 84, where does she get her PEP (Progressive Except Palestine)?”, Israel-Palestine News, 20 December  2017. []
  3. See “Zionist quotes re racism and Palestinian Genocide,” Palestinian Genocide. []

Gideon Polya is a biochemist, writer, humanitarian activist, and artist. His latest book is US-Imposed Post-9/11 Muslim Holocaust & Muslim Genocide (2020).

September 21, 2020 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Progressive Hypocrite, Timeless or most popular, Wars for Israel | , | 4 Comments

New European migration policy could repeat the 2015 crisis

By Lucas Leiroz | September 21, 2020

Five years ago, German Chancellor Angela Merkel unilaterally allowed hundreds of thousands of immigrants from the Middle East and Africa to enter European territory, causing the EU to enter one of the biggest crises in its history. The lack of a previous agreement with the other European governments has created great political instability on the continent that has never been overcome. However, when Berlin considered the number of foreigners in its territory “sufficient”, it simply closed its borders, keeping thousands of immigrants captive in other European countries waiting for a new destination. As a result, many European states were overcrowded with immigrants, while Germany rejoiced in cheap labor for its companies.

Now, history seems to repeat itself. Recently, the EU announced a new immigration and asylum policy, supposedly based on “solidarity” and humanitarian values, but which, once again, failed to reach a consensus within the organization’s countries. Interestingly, the new EU migration policy comes precisely from Germany, but this time the author of the project is Ursula von der Leyen, current President of the European Commission and a member of the Christian Democratic coalition that supports Angela Merkel.

Von der Leyen presented to the European Parliament a proposal to abolish the “Dublin-3”, a regulation according to which immigrants arriving in Europe are forced to register immediately in the country in which they are located. This norm had been causing a serious imbalance in the immigrant population in countries like Greece, Malta, Italy and Spain, but the big problem is that until now Von der Leyen and her supporters have not announced which mechanism will replace the current regulation, just stating that it will be a policy based on “governance and solidarity”, keeping obscurity until the final version of the project is presented.

The total disagreement between the members of the Union is leading to different solutions presented unilaterally by the members. The intention is simple: to survive, in the face of an uncertain future. Italy is working to establish strategies together with Libya to curb migratory flows. Greece is asking for EU support to rebuild the Lesbos camp. On the other hand, Budapest and Warsaw demonstrate total antipathy to humanitarianism as a basic principle of migratory policies. Hungary and Poland have already expressed officially that are not interested in receiving Muslim immigrants. Being culturally and ethnically homogeneous nations, these countries see with fear and terror the multiculturalism that increasingly penetrates Western Europe as a result of intense migratory flows.

In fact, the whole of Europe sees Van der Leyen’s plans with suspicion, simply because they see her as a representative of the interests of Angela Merkel, who is responsible for the 2015 migration crisis. Apparently, the abolition of Dublin-3 will mean nothing more than a mechanism to facilitate the distribution of immigrants across European territory, which will be imposed as a Union policy, disregarding the national interests of member states. Van der Leyen is simply continuing, five years later, what Merkel started in 2015: a policy of distributing cheap labor on European soil disguised by humanitarian principles.

As previously mentioned, Germany closed its borders when deemed necessary. But the “more migrations” speech remains the main agenda for Merkel and her representative in Brussels. So, what remains to be seen is whether Germany will also participate in the “solidarity distribution” of the immigrants currently located in southern European camps due to Dublin-3 or will it again restrict the entry of foreigners because it considers that there is “a sufficient amount” of them.

Apparently, Berlin created a major state of crisis and instability in Europe but managed to keep itself reasonably out of the worst consequences, because, unlike other countries, it closed its borders when it considered it necessary. Now, the Germans are trying to disperse a huge surplus of immigrants and refugees on European soil under a humanitarian flag and their dogma is supported unconditionally by NGOs, political parties and the business sector interested in precarious and low-cost foreign labor.

Apparently, there will be a scenario of uncontrolled migration, completely out of alignment with the national interests of any European state. This will generate a new movement of dissatisfaction in the bloc and could lead to new divisions and to the resurgence of radical nationalist tendencies that are already being born in several countries. For now, we can foresee new “exits” appearing in the coming years, or, worst case scenario, real waves of cultural and social conflicts – as it is already happening in France – in a large number of European countries.

Lucas Leiroz is a research fellow in international law at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro.

September 21, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Economics, Progressive Hypocrite | | Leave a comment

Democrats not serious to stop US weapons sales to the Saudis: Former US diplomat

Press TV – September 18, 2020

The Democrats are not serious to put down the US sales of weapons to the Saudis and to Israel and other countries, says J. Michael Springmann, a former US diplomat in Saudi Arabia.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s top aides have been questioned by Congress over President Donald Trump’s dismissal of a top administration official while he was investigating billions of dollars of arms sales to Saudi Arabia.

Top aides to Pompeo went before a congressional panel on Wednesday to defend Trump’s decision to fire former Department of State Inspector General Steve Linick.

Springmann said, “There are two points to keep in mind when considering the House of Representatives’ investigation of the firing of Steve Linick, the former State Department Inspector General, back in May of this year.”

“The first, of course, is that Linick was probing the sale of huge amounts of weapons to Saudi Arabia for use in Yemen, and other issues. Apparently, it was alleged that Secretary of State Pompeo and his wife used government officials to do personal things for them. I’m not sure what that is and there are no specifics. Linick claimed he had been bullied when he was asking questions, and wanted answers and not getting them. And I think there’s something to that,” he told Press TV in an interview on Friday.

“The other issue, of course, is that this is an election year. In a bit more than a month and a half, we have general elections for president and a third of the Senate and all of the House of Representatives. So Elliot Engel, the Democrat, who’s been doing most of the questioning of Pompeo, was also one of the Democrats who led the impeachment proceedings in the House of Representatives against Donald Trump. Eliot Engel of course has lost his seat in Congress. He lost in a primary, and he will be on his way out. And in the primary, the people running against him charged him with taking more money from defense contractors than 144 Republicans in the House of Representatives. So, I think that Engel is playing politics. He’s a strong supporter of Israel and he is trying to do his very best to get Donald Trump out of office,” said Springmann who is based in Washington.

“So I think it’s a nasty combination of events, with Trump trying to sell more weapons to the Saudis than they need, and also Engel playing politics for all he’s worth. The real issue is that the Democrats all have defense contractors in their districts, or most of them I guess, or they get money from defense contractors so that when push comes to shove, the Democrats don’t really fight against this. Yes, they passed a resolution in the House of Representatives and tried to get the same resolution through the Republican-controlled Senate, but they didn’t have the votes to overcome Donald Trump’s veto,” he added.

“So if the Democrats were really serious, they would reject the money from the defense contractors and unite to put down the sales of weapons to the Saudis and to Israel and other countries that don’t need them but use them to harm their neighbors. Unfortunately, the Democrats are not united enough because they’re too busy playing politics and too busy taking the money from defense contractors to produce results,” he stated.

“In sum, we need to look at all sides of the matter and not just listen to Elliot Engel,” he concluded.

In May, Trump abruptly fired Linick from his position as the State watchdog, while he was probing the administration’s last year’s decision to allow $8 billion in military sales to Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Jordan despite congressional opposition.

Congress had objected to the transactions, warning that providing the Saudis with more weapons could contribute to the human catastrophe in war-torn Yemen, where the Kingdom has been waging a devastating war for more than five years.

An estimated 100,000 people have lost their lives in the Saudi war.

Congress had also expressed concern that the military transaction would possibly leave US officials vulnerable to war crimes charges.

“The news of Inspector General Linick’s firing did come as a surprise… Any time one is terminated, it naturally will raise some questions,” said Representative Michael McCaul, the committee’s top Republican.

Linick, who was responsible for preventing government waste, fraud and abuse, was also investigating allegations that Pompeo and his wife misused government resources by having department staff handle personal matters.

Representative Eliot Engel, the Democratic chairman of the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee asked if Linick was fired “because he was getting closer and closer to matters that were embarrassing for Mr Pompeo and his family.”

September 18, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Progressive Hypocrite, Wars for Israel | , , , , | 1 Comment

Four ex-directors of French Shia Muslim centre arrested

French policemen in Paris, France on 18 March 2017 [Mustafa Yalçın/Anadolu Agency]

MEMO | September 17, 2020

Four ex-directors of a Shia Muslim centre in France have been arrested over concerns they continued to run the organisation despite it being disbanded by authorities in March last year, Agence France Presse (AFP) reports.

The four directors were taken into custody on Tuesday. Three have been remanded in custody, while one was freed over health concerns.

French prosecutors are reportedly investigating the four men for “participation in or maintenance of a dissolved association”, AFP quoted local sources as saying.

The centre was disbanded last year over allegations members were inciting armed jihadism and condoning the actions of regional players, such as Hezbollah, designated as terrorist organisations by the French government.

According to the report, members of the centre also propagated hate speech and anti-Semitism, as well as inciting violence.

The French court, which confirmed the centre’s closure after an appeal last June, said the activities of the organisation amounted to “propaganda intended to glorify the armed struggle and to provoke hatred and violence”, Le Monde reported.

“In the Zahra Centre, sermons are given which call for a fight against Zionism, against Israel and against Saudi Arabia and which, for some, legitimised armed jihad”, the French daily quoted court officials as saying.

According to the AFP report, the four continued preaching at the Zahra Centre’s site in northern France as well as on social media, despite last year’s order to cease and desist, leading to their arrests.

The Zahra Centre was founded in 2009 by Yahia Gouasmi, an Algerian-born Frenchman who also established an anti-Zionist political party in France in the same year. He is believed to have frequently spoken in support of Hezbollah, according to AFP.

The Zahra Centre was also subject to police scrutiny in October 2018, when local authorities raided the group’s headquarters over suspicions of links to terrorist organisations, Reuters reported.

At least 200 police officers, including elite troopers from Paris, took part in the pre-dawn raid on the Zahra Centre, discovering and seizing a cache of illegal weapons. Three people were remanded in custody over the discovery and the organisation’s French financial assets were frozen.

September 17, 2020 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Progressive Hypocrite | , | 1 Comment

West cannot hide crimes against Syria with humanitarian allegations: Syrian envoy to UN

Press TV – September 17, 2020

Syrian Ambassador to the United Nations Bashar al-Ja’afari says the West’s crimes, including economic terrorism, against Syria cannot be hidden by humanitarian claims and allegations.

Speaking at a UN Security Council session on the humanitarian situation in Syria via a video link, Ja’afari said the Western states, which have introduced coercive economic measures against the Arab country, would not be able to cover up the repercussions of their economic terrorism against Syrians.

He also stressed that the humanitarian allegations against Syria made by the West would not be able to hide its horrible crimes in exerting more pressure on the Arab nation and hampering the reconstruction process in the war-ravaged country and the return of the displaced Syrians.

Ja’afari noted that some Western countries, which have slapped Syria with persisting illegal sanctions, are telling outright lies in claiming that they are not targeting Syrians and that they are trying to provide humanitarian and medical exemptions to assist the Syrians.

The Syrian envoy also lambasted claims by the Western states that Damascus had deprived COVID-19 Syrian patients of due treatment, stressing that Syrian citizens are in fact suffering greatly from the disastrous effects of Western coercive measures.

“Since 1978, the US successive administrations have imposed coercive measures on the Syrian economy and its vital sectors, such as civil aviation, petroleum, energy, telecommunications, technology, banking, import and the export, including the import and manufacturing of food, medicines and basic medical equipment, to dissuade Syria from its stances in rejection of the hegemony and occupation policies,” Ja’afari added.

Elsewhere in his remarks, the Syrian envoy demanded the withdrawal of all Turkish troops and their allied militant groups from northern and northwestern parts of the Arab country.

He also stressed the need for ending the US occupation of the areas northeast of the Arab country and holding Washington and its allies and separatist militias and terrorist groups affiliated to it responsible for prolonging the suffering of the displaced in al-Hawl and al-Rukban camps.

In conclusion, Ja’afari referred to a recent report by the Guardian, which cited US research centers and academics as saying that the US, since 2001, has displaced 37 million persons in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Libya, Yemen and elsewhere under the slogan of the so-called “war on terrorism.”

September 17, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Illegal Occupation, Progressive Hypocrite | , | 4 Comments

Unipolar Spin: Why Imperial Leftists Vilify Russia’s Social Democracy

By Joaquin Flores | Strategic Culture Foundation | September 14, 2020

A lie told a thousand times becomes the truth. In reading countless articles from the Atlantic Council press outlets (NYT, WaPo, VICE News, et al), we take for granted that modern Russia is a right-wing regime controlled by an authoritarian personality bent on total domination. As a result, the debate then gets framed on why or whether its right for leftists to attack it as such, since this is used to further justify collective punishment (sanctions) against a whole people.

What escapes us is why creating propaganda that will result in collective punishment is in any way the business of self-declared leftists in the first place. Historically, it hadn’t been, which raises big questions about who is really controlling the narrative and providing career paths and publishing opportunities for those who posture on the radical, even ‘anarchist’ left. We all know what happened to the self-imploded reputation of the Trotskyist Christopher Hitchens, that war-criminal scoundrel who offered some kind of left-cover for the crown’s imperial pretensions in Iraq. Millions died in part as a direct product of his work. Those who didn’t attend his funeral will tell you why.

Adding insult to injury is the fact that Russia is a social democracy, a fact erased from the collective understanding as a result of the insidious psychological operation being carried out on western audiences and Russians alike.

The End of Globalization: Unipolar Panic at the Rise of Multipolarity

The broader geopolitical problem for unipolar trans-Atlanticism is that much of the rest of the world has nearly caught up to the U.S. The unipolar moment is over, and multipolarity has arrived. This is a growing success and a great achievement for the people of Asia, Latin America, the Middle-East, and Sub-Saharan Africa. All wars and coups the U.S. has engaged in since the end of WWII were aimed at suppressing this multipolar eventuality. And yet multipolarity, as explained through the Atlantic Council and its imperial leftist scribes, is deceitfully presented as a neo-fascist threat to the people of the world, and one promoted uniquely by Russia. This would come as a surprise to the BRICS countries, and all those in their peripheries. It would defy the logic of Mercosur and the Sucre that these were established by sovereign state in Latin America at great cost, through the decades of surviving Washington Consensus dictatorships and the rule of U.S. Steel and the United Fruit Company, only to hand it to Moscow for now particular reason.

And yet this stands at the heart of vilifying Russia’s social democracy.

That multipolarity is a ‘Russian project’ is truly the most incoherent and chauvinistic geopolitical conspiracy theory in modern times, reminiscent of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

Narcissist Gaslighting

The rampant xenophobia that is allowed in the toxic Atlanticist press will no doubt be the subject of debate when those individuals soon lose their careers and livelihoods, because being a talentless hack makes one highly expendable. And this border-line racism and national chauvinism against a whole people and their representative government is increasingly being aired in broad daylight.

No, the waters won’t part, up will not become down, and the elites promoting a soft-power war on Russia won’t be overthrown. But their replaceable media-minions, who become too much of a liability with all the bad PR, will certainly be disappeared and erased.

We can set aside that Russophobic hate scribbling performed concertedly appears like an Operation Mockingbird psy-op, and yes, we can even ignore that over forty years ago the Church Commission revealed that the legacy newspapers have the international sections and editorials of their publications reviewed, approved, and even directly written by CIA agents and assets.

We can leave even alone that these are seemingly managed through a network of seemingly independent news and opinion outlets which nevertheless parrot each other’s talking points on the righteousness of NATO expansionism, the evils of Russia and Putin, and are organized under an Atlantic Council mandate.

What a perfect match, one no doubt made in heaven – to posture as some holier than thou concerned citizen of abuses around the world while in fact doing little more than feeding a crypto-nationalist media ecosystem bent on weapons sales and big ticket contracts for the U.S. military industrial complex. With enough self-delusion or narcissistic supply, they can even imagine that this is not what’s going on. One would imagine that it’s Russia, not the U.S. with 800 bases around the world. This is truly sick gaslighting, and all the well-paid flying monkeys are deployed with the named aim of doing just that.

Follow the Money – Promote Russophobia, Win Prizes

The Atlantic Council related publications which continue these Operation Mockingbird-like methods, have employed a number of ethically compromised imperial left-wing radicals to do the dirty work of gaslighting the American public on the political and socio-economic nature of countries being targeted by the U.S.

We can see from the evidence that the motley crew of imperial leftist Russophobes are those who aspire to be blue-check mark people on twitter and have regular opportunities at Atlantic Council approved publications. They want to be fast-tracked to full tenure in the increasingly partisan humanities and social sciences departments of various colleges and universities, and do the book writing and speaking tour gig. This is a relatively easy formula: virtue signal on domestic wedge issues like gender and race while ignoring class issues that would otherwise cause discomfort for their financiers, simultaneously doubling down on Atlantic Council approved Russophobia using those wedge issues – meanwhile ignoring or obfuscating the larger socioeconomic and geopolitical questions that provide more context and clarity.

After this storm has passed, it will be the subject of many books written by numerous historians, how and why it came to be that in the climate of virtue signaling political correctness, the only approved form of national chauvinism and borderline-racist conspiracy theories was Russophobic in nature. Those who engaged in it, while being creatures of their time and place, will be condemned and marginalized for the xenophobes that they were.

Their method, which is as dangerous to the left as it is misinformative to the public at large, is to use radical left criticisms of countries the U.S. is targeting for regime change and sanctions, even though there are effectively no countries (including most obviously the plutocratic U.S.) that meet their anarchoid standard. But by arbitrarily using an anarchist yard stick to measure the political correctness of some other country, they can issue these leftoid fatwas and make it so appear that Russia is uniquely problematic.

And the personal motivations of egomania aside, we only need to follow the money. And for our purposes today, just a fraction of it. Between George Soros’ Open Societies Foundation and the National Endowment for Democracy’s lucrative grants, The MacArthur Foundation, there are hundreds of millions of dollars being thrown at this soft-power endeavor.

Outside of philanthropy are the huge sums paid to ‘journalists’ and ‘authors’ directly by the billionaire blogs themselves, no doubt doing their part for Operation Mockingbird. You can bet your bottom dollar that the life of a collective-punishment-advocating ‘leftist’ in the employ of empire is neither a difficult nor impoverished one. They may appear homely, bookish, even shabby in their social media presentation, but that is part of the illusion, the veneer. Within the demented aesthetic-sphere of Anglophone left-radicalism, projecting depressiveness is akin to projecting virtue – an odd carryover from Puritanism. But in truth, they are neither hungry nor intellectual. They are well paid actors, and those who believe them have been duped.

Russia is the target of an ongoing campaign to vilify its leadership, with no shortage of tropes and dog whistling that this is an inherent feature of Russian culture itself. Like black-face, comedic ethnic impersonations are all but banned in the public sphere, unless it is of a Russian. The trope is so pervasive that even those trying to speak in the name of decreasing tensions, often frame their commentary in the name of peace by accepting that premise; that Russianness is inherently corrupt, misogynistic, authoritarian, and aggressive.

It is this very premise which must be challenged. The funny thing is, this task isn’t too difficult.

The Elastic Overton Window

By which rubric, by which method, do we compare the reality of a targeted country like Russia to what is possible or even desirable?

Anarchist theory is ‘fantastic’ because anything one compares it to will necessarily fall short. It is reminiscent of Trotskyist criticisms of nominally socialist states, or Salafist criticisms of countries already within the Ummah. These societies, by definition, have to fall short because the self-declared ‘revolutionary’ nature of these belief systems must characterize anything short of their unattainable ideal as being a critical failure.

When it comes to assessing the reality of Russia’s cultural and sociopolitical system, the Overton Window of social acceptability is magically moved to the radical end of the anarchist left when Russia is the subject, for the forced result that we find Russia to be double-plus ungood, despite that those penning these pieces come from a country (the U.S.) far to the right on the socioeconomic matters which effect real working people.

The U.S. is Far to the right of Russia? Yes, we’ll explain

The fact that ski mask wearing anarchists are not free to run naked whilst flinging frozen chickens through kindergartens or Easter church services, is presented as evidence that Russia is an authoritarian state. The fact that Russia is a country, with a culture and history it finds worthy of being taught in schools, and with borders, and a standing army (!!) are taken as proof positive that Russia fulfills most of Umberto Eco’s ’14 Signs of Fascism’. And yet until last Tuesday, these were just understood of part of the fabric that makes a UN member-state … a UN member-state.

Every other country on earth has a school curriculum, has laws on public decency, and teaches the country’s narrative in its school system. When every other country is looked at, we are encouraged to see ‘normal’, and we apply a non-anarchist yard stick to measure it up. When it’s Russia, everything is problematized using every epithet from the critical school glossary. It is interesting, but upon close examination not strange, that these writers are able to get away with it. They do after all have the full support of the world’s last unipolar empire behind them.

The job of these writers is to misinform the left, and to turn the politics of class struggle into the politics of xenophobic national rivalry – a quintessential aspect of classical fascism. That they use apparently politically correct talking points couched within the framework of human rights, and terms borrowed from the vocabulary of the new-left is beside the point.

We must look instead at the perennial meta-political essence of that endeavor and not the particular forms it takes based upon the political or linguistic fashions of the day. The fact that we are better informed to understand fascism through the lens of a meta-political essence, points to a very big theoretical problem in the work of both Umberto Eco and Roger Griffin, as their entire composite heuristic explanatory paradigm is challenged in so doing.

It probably escapes people after that barrage of disinformation and national chauvinism parading as left-wing critique, that Russia is a social-democratic society.

It is Russia, not the United States that has universal healthcare and university education, vast public housing and useful programs for the disadvantaged, a multi-party parliamentary democracy, early retirement (60 m, 55 f), nearly two years leave with pay for new mothers. Russia, like any other social democracy also has strong workplace protections against discrimination, a vigorous labor movement (35% union density in a formal workforce of 70 million), and codified rights for ethnic, linguistic and religious groups, and a no-holds barred private/citizen media complex that regularly attacks the country’s leaders and exposes the inevitable corruption that comes with large-scale societies and market systems.

Putin Serves the Russian Oligarchy Poorly – A Question of Democracy

While less-than-honest critics would say that Russia’s social democracy is merely a ‘carry-over’ from Russia’s former Soviet system, it begs the question: why nearly thirty years later, twenty-some of which being under Putin’s ‘right-wing oligarchy’, are these still soundly in place?

We are pressed with a difficult dilemma in the Russophobic narrative: Either Putin is the tyrannical tool of a rapacious oligarchy that has nevertheless failed to destroy Russia’s social democracy in 20 years, or Putin uses his vast powers to maintain its progressive social system against the right-wing oligarchy. In either event, the Swiss cheese that is the imperial left’s Russophobic narrative is evidently pungent.

Putin has been elected – and continues to win elections – for the past two decades. Isn’t this indicative of some large problem in the narrative? This is a question we have to turn on its head: why, in the U.S., have we taken for granted that our elected leaders should expectedly let us down and fail in their mandate with such prejudice that we want to throw them out every four or eight years? Why, in the west, has democracy been defined as dissatisfaction built upon betrayal?

How would a democratic society respond to a government that has, on the balance, solved and continued to solve the problems arising from the collapse of its former authoritarian self? Would they respond by throwing that government out, or by re-electing it?

This is not to view Russia through rose-tinted glasses, or to ignore the problems that it has: largely similar problems that face the world in the context of global capitalism. Russia has problems in wealth inequality, as well as too high an incarceration rate – though still one that pales in comparison to the U.S. by nearly half. But our view is offered knowing that such criticisms are so vast in their abundance, and so mandatory in every western publication, that not fixating on these here in no way obstructs audiences from accessing them elsewhere. What we bring is some balance and perspective.

What characterizes Russia’s social democracy are things which the left-most wing of the Democrat Party in the U.S., led by figures like Bernie Sanders, would consider absolute victories to achieve. And yet nevertheless we are confronted with a media barrage that blindsides us with misinformation to the extent that this basic truth is lost upon us. Fortunately, that tide is turning and will turn all the faster as we understand the reality of modern Russia through a sober and honest lens.

September 14, 2020 Posted by | Progressive Hypocrite, Economics, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular, Russophobia | , , | Leave a comment

Hypocrisy Thy Name Is Zion

Jewish groups support BLM while ignoring Palestinian genocide

By Philip Giraldi • Unz Review • September 8, 2020

There is a tendency on the part of major Jewish groups in the United States and in Europe to discover what they describe as anti-Semitism wherever one turns. Last month, a statue of the well-known and highly respected 18th century French writer and political philosopher Voltaire was removed from outside the Académie Française in Paris. Voltaire was a major figure in the “Enlightenment,” during which what we now call science and applied rationalism challenged the authority of the church and the King.

The statue had recently been vandalized by the French version of Black Lives Matter (BLM) because Voltaire had reportedly invested in the French East India Company, which engaged in the triangular trade between Europe, Africa and the New World. The commodities included Africans who were destined to become slaves in the European colonies. Beyond that Voltaire, a man of his times, believed blacks to have “little or no intelligence” and also considered Jews to be born “with raging fanaticism in their hearts.”

Voltaire was reportedly much admired by Hitler, so perhaps it would not be off base to suggest that in France, where the Jewish community is extremely powerful while Africans are not, it was Voltaire cast as the anti-Semite that consigned his statue to a government warehouse never to be seen again. By that reasoning, one expects that the world will soon have a ban on the music of Richard Wagner and Ludwig van Beethoven as they too were admired by Hitler.

The idea that someone can change history by ignoring aspects of it means that school textbooks are being rewritten at a furious pace to make sure that there is overwhelming coverage of the holocaust and black achievement. Also, the erasing of monuments is being pursued with singular intensity in the United States, where the Founding Fathers and other dead white males are being one by one consigned to the trash heap. Doing so, unfortunately, also destroys the learning experience that can be derived from using the monuments as visual mechanisms for confronting and understanding the mistakes made in the past. A commission set up by the mayor of the District of Columbia has, for example, compiled a hit list of monuments and commemorations that must be either removed, renamed or placed into “context.” It includes the Jefferson Memorial and the Washington Monument. The name “Columbia” is, of course, certain to be changed.

Interestingly, Jewish groups in the United States have been in the forefront in supporting BLM’s apparent mission to upend what used to pass for America’s European-derived culture. Ironically, that culture includes free speech, democracy and mercantilism, all of which have greatly benefited Jews. The narrative is, of course, being wrapped around the common cause of blacks and Jews together fighting against the alleged white nationalists who are being blamed by the media for much of the violence taking place even when videos taken at the scenes of the rioting definitely show nearly all black mobs doing the arson and looting.

And blacks who are skeptical of the Jewish role are quickly put in their place, as was Rodney Muhammad of Philadelphia, who was removed from his executive position with the NAACP after expressing skepticism about all the Jewish friends that blacks suddenly appeared to be acquiring, quoting an observation often attributed to the now disgraced Voltaire on a Facebook entry, “To learn who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize.”

The lead organization in shaping the acceptable narrative is the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), which promotes itself as “Fighting Hate for Good.” In other words, anyone on the other side of the narrative is by definition a “hater.” ADL apparently advertised an online discussion topic for August 28th, shortly after the shooting incident in Kenosha Wisconsin that killed two white men and injured a third. The headline reads “Why all white American middle schoolers must publicly condemn the Anti-Semitic murders by white supremacist Kyle Rittenhouse.”

If the ad is indeed genuine, one notes immediately that the killings are being framed as anti-Semitism without any actual evidence to suggest that anything like that was involved or that the shooter knew the religion of those who were confronting him. All three of the “victims” are described as BLM supporters, which they apparently were, but it ignores the fact that they were also Antifa activists and all three had criminal records involving violence. One of them, Joseph Rosenbaum, is, to be sure Jewish, and also a pedophile, and the other two might also be Jews if ADL is correct, but that does not seem to have been material in what took place. Credible accounts of the shooting suggest that Rittenhouse was attacked by the three, one of whom, Grosskreutz, had a gun, and was being beaten on his head with Huber’s sidewalk surfboard. He responded in self-defense.

And ADL is not alone in its defense of BLM. More than six hundred Jewish groups have signed on to a full page newspaper ad supporting the movement. The ad says “We speak with one voice when we say, unequivocally: Black Lives Matter” and then goes on to assert “There are politicians and political movements in this country who build power by deliberately manufacturing fear to divide us against each other. All too often, anti-Semitism is at the center of these manufactured divisions.”

So, once again, it is all about the perpetual victimhood of Jews. That Jews constitute the wealthiest and best educated demographic in the United States would seem to suggest that they are especially favored, which they are, rather than targeted by raging mobs of hillbillies. More than 90% of discretionary Department of Homeland Security funds goes to protect Jewish facilities and the Department of Education and Congress are always prepared to create new rules protecting Jews from feeling “uncomfortable” in their occasional interactions with critics of Israel.

Jews largely think and vote progressive, which is part of the reason for aligning with blacks even though rioting and looting is likely to affect them more than other demographics as many of them might still have businesses in the cities that are most likely to be hit. But there is also a much bigger reason to do so. Many blacks in BLM as well as progressive white supporters were beginning to suggest that the movement should broaden its agenda and recognize inter alia the suffering of others, to include the Palestinian people. A strong show of support from Jewish groups, backed up by what one might presume to be a flow of contributions to the cause, would presumably be a way of nipping that sentiment in the bud just as Jewish donors to the Democratic Party were able to block any language in the party platform sympathetic to the Palestinians.

It is of course the ultimate irony that Jewish groups are very sensitive to the suffering of blacks in the United State while at the same time largely ignoring the war crimes and other devastation going on in Israel and Palestine at the hands of their co-religionists. The beating and shooting of unarmed and non-resisting Palestinians, to include children, the destruction of the livelihoods of farmers, and the demolition of homes to make way for Jewish settlers is beyond belief and is largely invisible as the Jewish influenced U.S. media does not report it. It is, simply put, genocide. And on top of that, Israel has been bombing defenseless civilians in Gaza nearly daily of late, attacking and destabilizing Lebanon and Syria, and also conniving with American Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to go to war with Iran.

It should not be surprising if black groups would be suspicious of the motives of the Jewish organizations that suddenly seem to want to be friendly. When Rodney Muhammad was removed from his position with the NAACP in Philadelphia, Jonathan Greenblatt, the head of ADL, tweeted “Credit to Executive Committee of Philly NAACP & National NAACP for taking action here. We hope this will enable new opportunities for collaboration as the local Black & Jewish communities can do more to fight against hate & push for dignity of all people.”

Greenblatt has been a leader in the fight to criminalize both criticism of Israel and also the free speech being exercised by supporters of the non-violent Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS). For him, “dignity of all people” clearly does not include Palestinians or even anyone who peacefully supports their cause.

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation (Federal ID Number #52-1739023) that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is https://councilforthenationalinterest.org, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is inform@cnionline.org.

September 8, 2020 Posted by | Progressive Hypocrite, Wars for Israel | , , , , | Leave a comment

HBO’s ‘Welcome to Chechnya’ Is Latest Anti-Russian Cold War Propaganda

By Max Parry • Unz Review • August 26, 2020

In 2017, explosive allegations first emerged that the authorities of the Chechen Republic were reportedly interning gay men in concentration camps. After a three year period of dormancy, the accusations have resurfaced in a new feature length documentary by HBO Films entitled Welcome to Chechnya. Shot between mid-2017 and early last year, the film has received widespread acclaim among Western media and film critics. Shortly after its release last month, the Trump administration and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced an increase in economic sanctions and imposed travel restrictions against Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov and his family, citing the putative human rights abuses in the southern Russian republic covered in the film.

Most of the boilerplate reviews of Welcome to Chechnya have heaped particular praise upon the documentary’s novelty use of ‘deepfake’ technology to hide the identities of alleged victims in the cinematic investigation. Yet at the closing of the film, one subject who previously appears with his likeness concealed by AI reveals himself at a news conference without the disguise—rendering the prior use of synthetic media fruitless. Maxim Lapunov, who is not even ethnically Chechen but a Russian native of Siberia, is still the only individual to have gone public with the charges. Despite the obvious credibility and authenticity questions regarding the use of such controversial technology, it has not prevented critics from lauding it unquestioningly. Unfortunately, even some in alternative media have been regurgitating the film’s propaganda such as The Intercept, a slick online news publication owned by billionaire eBay founder Pierre Omidyar whose financial ties to the national security state and U.S. soft power institutions conflict with the outlet’s purported mission. Notably, The Intercept’s glowing review of Welcome to Chechnya was written by Mehdi Hasan, a journalist who also works for Al-Jazeera, a news agency owned by the ruling emirs of Qatar, a theocratic dictatorship where homosexuality is actually illegal .

The documentarians follow the work of a purported network of activists who evacuate individuals like Lapunov out of the Caucasian republic. This is the film’s primary source of drama, despite their encountering seemingly no difficulty from the local authorities in doing so. We are then subjected to random cell phone clips of apparent hate crimes and human rights abuses going on, but at no point does the film crew even visit the Argun prison where the anti-gay pogroms are alleged to have taken place. In 2017, the imperial hipsters at Vice news were given unrestricted access to the facility where nothing was found and the warden adamantly denied the allegations — but not without expressing his own disapproval of homosexuality which was assumed by his interrogators to be evidence of the detentions having occurred. In the HBO documentary, a similar hatchet job is done to Ramzan Kadyrov, whose uncomfortable denial of the existence of homosexuality in the deeply conservative and predominantly Muslim republic is implied to be proof that the purges must be happening. One may recall this same sort of smear tactic was previously done to former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. However, Kadyrov and the warden’s predictable responses to the subject serve only as confirmation bias, not confirmation.

The selective outrage in response to the alleged purges, like all things Russia-related, is highly politicized. Western viewers would have no idea that of the 74 countries worldwide where homosexuality is still criminalized, Russia isn’t among them. In more than a dozen of those nations, same-sex activity is punishable by death, a few of which happen to be close strategic allies of the United States, including Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. As recently as 2017, the U.S. was one of 13 countries to vote against a United Nations Human Rights Council resolution condemning countries with capital punishment for same-sex relations to avoid falling-out with those allies, most of which have legal systems established on their respective interpretations of Sharia law. While the local authorities of the Muslim-majority Chechen Republic have been allowed to introduce some elements of the fundamentalist religious code by the Russian government such as the banning of alcohol and gambling and requiring the wearing of hijab by women, as a federal subject it is still ultimately beholden to Russia’s secular constitution. In fact, it was Kadyrov’s predecessor, Alu Alkhanov, who hoped to govern Chechnya with Sharia law, not the current administration. Credulous audiences would have no clue that Kadyrov actually represents the more moderate wing of Chechen politics because there is absolutely no history or context provided, a deliberately misleading choice on the part of the filmmakers.

The absence of any historical background deceptively suggests that the anti-gay sentiment in the mostly Muslim North Caucasus is somehow an extension of the homophobia in Russia itself, despite the autonomous differences in religion, culture, and society. In the last decade, the weaponization of identity politics has been central to Washington’s ongoing demonization of Russia and its President, Vladimir Putin, with the issue of LGBT rights particularly given significant attention. While homosexuality is decriminalized, there is admittedly no legal prohibition of discrimination against the LGBT community in Russia. In particular, human rights groups have condemned the notorious federal law passed in 2013 known as the ‘gay propaganda law’ that forbids the distribution of information promoting “non-traditional sexual relations” to minors, which entails the banning of gay pride parades and other LGBT rights demonstrations. However, the measure enjoys widespread support among the Russian people whose social conservatism has been resuscitated by the Orthodox Church since the breakup of the Soviet Union. It is rather ironic and hypocritical that the West has since taken issue with this turn, considering it facilitated that political transformation.

In reality, the reason for the relentless vilification of Putin has absolutely nothing to to do with the exaggerated plight of gays in Russia and a lot more to do with the reversal of policies under his predecessor, Boris Yeltsin. In the nineties, the mass privatization of the former state-owned enterprises during Russia’s conversion to capitalism resulted in the instant impoverishment of millions and the rapid rise of the notorious ‘oligarchs’ which the West characterized at the time as progression towards democracy. In the loans-for-shares scheme, a new ruling class of bankers and industrialists accumulated enormous wealth overnight and by the middle of the decade, owned or controlled much of the country’s media outlets. The oligarchs held enormous power and influence over the deeply unpopular Yeltsin, who would surely have lost reelection in 1996 without their backing and the assistance of Western meddling in the form of massive loans from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

While economic disparity and corruption persists today, overall the Russian economy has been rebuilt after its energy assets were re-nationalized and brought back under state control by the Putin administration, resulting in improved living standards and income levels for the last two decades. By the same measure, the Russian people can hardly be blamed for associating homosexuality with the unbridled neoliberalism, vulture capitalism and draconian austerity imposed on their country by Western capital. It is also truly paradoxical that the notion of “Russian oligarchs” has become synonymous with Putin in the minds of Westerners when many of the most obscenely wealthy oligarchs of the Yeltsin era now live in exile as his most ardent political opponents after they faced prosecution for their financial crimes. Not coincidentally, the initial reports of the ‘gay gulags’ in Chechnya were published in Novaya Gazeta, an anti-Putin newspaper partly owned by former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, the very man who ushered in the economic liberalization which auctioned off the state assets to oligarchs like co-owner Alexander Lebedev.

Gorbachev’s reforms, particularly that of perestroika (“restructuring”), also had destructive consequences for the national question and ethno-regional interests. V.I. Lenin had famously called the Russian Empire a “prison house of nations”, in reference to its heterogeneous range of nationalities and ethnic groups. The dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991 especially re-agitated ethno-national conflicts in the Caucasus, a region that had enjoyed several decades of relative harmony and stability under socialism with rights and representation that did not exist in pre-revolutionary Russia. While Azerbaijan and Georgia were granted independence, Chechnya and many other municipalities remained under federal control of the Russian Federation, as sovereignty did not constitutionally apply because it had never been an independent state. Not to mention, its oil and gas reserves are essential to Russia’s very economic survival.

The jihadism which plagued the Caucasus was an outgrowth of the U.S.-backed ‘holy war’ in Afghanistan in the 1980s, the brainchild of Zbigniew Brzezinski, National Security Advisor in the Jimmy Carter administration. It was the Polish-born Brzezinski who not only authored the geostrategy of arming the mujahideen against the Soviets but the efforts to turn Russia’s own large Muslim minority community against them. This was mostly unsuccessful as the majority of its 20 million Muslims (10% of the population) are harmoniously integrated into Russian society, but the Atlanticists did fan the flames of a militant secessionist movement in Chechnya that erupted in a violent insurgency and became increasingly Islamist as the conflict dragged on. For Washington, the hope was that the West could gain access to Caspian oil by encouraging the al-Qaeda-linked separatists rebranded as “rebels” vulnerable to its domination in the energy-rich region. The collapse of the USSR already escalated hostilities between the intermingling ethnic communities of the region, but the antagonisms were intensified by CIA soft power cutouts like the Jamestown Foundation fomenting the secessionist insurrection. As the separatist movement grew increasingly Wahhabist thanks to U.S.-ally Saudi Arabia, its more moderate nationalist faction led by Akhmad Kadyrov eventually defected back to the Russian side. The elder Kadyrov would pay the price when he was assassinated in a 2004 stadium bombing in Grozny during an annual Victory Day celebration, with his son becoming one of his successors.

The Kremlin’s support for the Kadyrovs should be understood as a compromise which prevented the more radical Islamists from taking power, which apparently Washington would be happier with running the North Caucasus. What a human rights utopia Chechnya would be as a breakaway Islamic state, under the salafists which during the Chechen wars committed unspeakable acts of terrorism including the taking of hospital patients, theater goers, and even hundreds of schoolchildren as hostages. One can be certain that if there aren’t anti-gay pogroms going on in Chechnya now, there definitely would be without the likes of Kadyrov in power. In the documentary, what the Chechen leader does implicitly acknowledge may be occurring are individual honor killings within families and clans, a social problem common in other Muslim countries such as Pakistan, and certainly not a human rights issue particular to Chechnya. Many instances of honor killings in the Muslim world have included homosexuality as a motive for the extrajudicial killings by relatives of victims believed to have betrayed the family honor. On the other hand, Kadyrov himself has overseen the establishment of unprecedented reconciliation commissions to address the issue of honor culture, blood feuds and vendetta codes of Caucasian tribes. Kadyrov’s promotion of reconciliation has made significant progress in reducing such killings which were rampant during the Chechen Wars as family members would often seek to avenge the deaths of loved ones. Now that the region is in a period of relative stability, peace and economic recovery, with the once devastated city of Grozny now known as the ‘Dubai of the North Caucasus’, the West is suddenly feigning concern over human rights.

The swift end brought to the conflict by Putin was another reason for his becoming a target of Washington who had been counting on the balkanization of southern Russia. In a pinnacle of imperial projection, the explanation for Putin’s rise to power has since been revised by the Atlanticists to his having somehow secretly masterminded the 1999 Moscow apartment bombings while director of the Federal Security Service (FSB, the KGB’s successor), as if the neocons hope to deflect all of the longstanding rumors about the Bush administration and the 9/11 attacks onto the Kremlin. Except this Machiavellian conspiracy would be a lot more believable if the Chechen wars had not been going on since the early nineties, with much worse terrorist attacks already having been committed by the separatists, such as the taking of thousands of hospital patients as hostages in southern Russia. Since the end of the Chechen Wars, on the flip side the U.S. has also backed Russian opposition figure and Putin critic Alexei Navalny, a right-wing Islamophobe who has pledged to secede the North Caucasus while comparing its Muslim inhabitants to cockroaches. Despite his anti-immigrant rhetoric and minuscule 2% support among Russians, Navalny has been depicted as a “pro-democracy” and “anti-corruption” campaigner in Western media, who have been crying foul over his recent suspected poisoning in Russia and ensuing comatose airlift to Germany. If only the naive American liberals who read The New York Times and The Washington Post had any idea that Mr. Navalny has far more in common with the dreaded Mr. Trump than Putin does.

Meanwhile, the U.S. has already experienced blowback for its nurturing of terrorism in the Caucasus in the form of the Boston Marathon bombings, which recently returned to the news when convicted Chechen-American perpetrator Dzokhar Tsarnaev’s death sentence was vacated on appeal last month. In the aftermath of the April 2013 attacks, it was revealed that Tsarnaev’s deceased older brother and co-conspirator Tamerlan Tsarnaev had been radicalized attending seminars financed by the Jamestown Foundation while traveling abroad in Tblisi, Georgia, and the brothers’ uncle Ruslan Tsarni had previously been married to the daughter of high-ranking U.S. intelligence officer Graham Fuller, Brzezinski’s CIA station chief in Kabul, Afghanistan, during the Afghan-Soviet war. It also came to light that ‘Uncle Ruslan’ had previously worked for the CIA-linked United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and established a company called the Congress for Chechen International Organizations which funded Islamic militants in the Caucasus. Despite the astounding ‘coincidences’ surrounding the Tsarnaev clan, Uncle Ruslan was never considered a person of interest by the FBI, who had ignored warnings by the Russian FSB of Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s extremism prior to the attacks.

Two years before Putin’s election, Zbigniew Brzezinski, the prime mover of the West‘s plan to dominate the globe by using Islam to bring down the USSR in delivering the Soviet equivalent of the Vietnam War, wrote in The Grand Chessboard: American Primacy and Its Geostrategic Imperatives (1997):

“… The last decade of the twentieth century has witnessed a tectonic shift in world affairs. For the first time ever, a non-Eurasian power has emerged not only as a key arbiter of Eurasian power relations but also as the world’s paramount power. The defeat and collapse of the Soviet Union was the final step in the rapid ascendance of a Western Hemisphere power, the United States, as the sole and, indeed, the first truly global power.”

Those words were written before the return of both Russia and China on the world stage, developments that have thrown a monkey wrench into Washington’s plans which the Russophobic Warsaw-native did not anticipate in his blueprint for Western hegemony. When the U.S.-backed headchoppers in the Syrian war nearly had control of Damascus, just a thousand miles or so from Sochi, the threat of jihadism returning to the Caucasus became very real. Beginning at the Munich Conference in 2007, Putin had begun to criticize the monopolistic expansion of NATO on Russia’s borders — but after the subsequent overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi where Moscow witnessed Libya transformed into a hotbed of terrorism like post-Saddam Iraq, the prospect of the same happening in Syria was an existential threat that could not be tolerated. In mainstream media, reality has been inverted where Moscow’s self-defense has been portrayed as expansionism, even though the so-called “annexation” of Crimea was virtually nonviolent compared to the Nazi junta initiated by Washington in Ukraine and the Russian-speaking people of Donetsk and Luhansk who voted to join Russia did not wish to end up like those massacred in Odessa. Besides, is the U.S. not currently annexing northeast Syria? The Crimean parliament and Syrian government invited Moscow, while the same cannot be said for the US presence in violation of international law.

Those in Washington with no respect for the sovereignty of nations would prefer Americans to see Russia as an adversary. During the Cold War, the threat was communism, but with capitalism restored in Eastern Europe, it became necessary to manipulate liberals into perceiving Russia as an ultra conservative regime. They must also keep Americans from knowing the true history of US-Russia relations — that Russia was the first nation to recognize American independence when Catherine the Great’s neutrality during the Revolutionary War indirectly aided the Thirteen Colonies in their victory against the Loyalists and Great Britain. During the War of Independence, the Russian Empress had maintained relations with the U.S. and rebuffed British requests for military assistance. The Russian Empire also later helped secure the Union victory during the Civil War, with an Imperial Navy fleet off the shores of the Pacific preventing the Confederates from landing troops on the west coast and deterring intervention by the British and the French. Then as Allies in WWII, while the U.S. was victorious in the Pacific, it was the Soviets who truly won the war in Europe, a feat the Anglo-Americans are still trying to take credit for to this day. Unfortunately, despite his promising rhetorical embrace of détente with Moscow that has made him the subject of political persecution, Donald Trump has proven to be every bit as hostile toward Russia as his forerunners. With the latest actions taken by his state department regarding Chechnya that are right out of the Brzezinski playbook, the idiom that “the more things change, the more they stay the same” certainly applies to Washington and US-Russia relations.

Max Parry is an independent journalist and geopolitical analyst. His writing has appeared widely in alternative media. Max may be reached at maxrparry@live.com

August 26, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Film Review, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Progressive Hypocrite, Russophobia, Timeless or most popular | , , , | Leave a comment

Weaponized media coverage & off-the-scale hypocrisy as the West promotes ‘regime change’ in Belarus

By Neil Clark | RT | August 19, 2020

Lukashenko has always admitted his style is authoritarian but notwithstanding this, media coverage of the crisis in Belarus has been slanted and the West’s condemnation of the crackdown on protests reeks of double standards.

You can tell a ‘regime change’ is afoot in Minsk simply by looking at the coverage of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. Their website at the weekend was headed by a large caption ‘Post election crackdown in Belarus’, which has now changed to ‘Crisis in Belarus‘. The five lead articles on Sunday were all about Belarus. It’s the same on Tuesday.

Radio Free Europe/RL is funded by the US Congress through the United States Agency for Global Media. Up to the early 1970s it was funded covertly by the CIA.

It was a soft-power tool of the old Cold War, sometimes with calamitous consequences. In their book ‘Cold War’, Jeremy Isaacs and Taylor Downing tell how in the Hungarian Uprising of 1956 “Radio Free Europe, the CIA-backed station that broadcast into Eastern Europe, was dramatically talking the situation up, proclaiming the West’s backing for what it called Hungary’s ‘freedom fighters.‘”

But the backing never came, and indeed was never likely to come and the uprising, having been encouraged by RFE, was ruthlessly suppressed.

You might have thought RFE/RL would have been wound up in 1989 when the Berlin Wall came down, but there was still a job to do.

It says it reports the news in countries where a free press is banned by the government or not fully established and while some of its journalism is perfectly fine the truth is that it usually stops reporting once a country is locked into Euro-Atlantic security structures. When it starts broadcasting to a country it’s invariably a sign that the US ‘Deep State’ wants its government toppled. For example, in 1998 it began broadcasting to Iraq, and we all know what happened there five years later. RFE/RL is undoubtedly ‘state-affiliated media’ yet you won’t see that warning attached to its tweets, as you now see attached to RT when it tweets this article.

It’s no great surprise that Franak Viacorka,  the journalist and social media promoter of the anti-Lukashenko protests has worked for RFE/RL. As flagged by Ben Norton last week, Viacorka’s organization DigiCom.Net details his close link to US bodies. Viacorka works for the US Agency for Global Media, the parent of RFE/RL and has served as a ‘creative director’ for the Belarus service of Radio Free Europe, as well as being a consultant for the US State Department-funded ‘Freedom House’. He is also a non-Resident Senior Fellow of the Atlantic Council, his appointment lauded by Michael McFaul, the former US Ambassador to Russia.

To be fair to Viacorka he is absolutely open about his US connections and in fact seems very proud of them. And they don’t mean the 32-year-old isn’t genuine about his commitment to ‘democracy and personal freedom’. That’s even though he appeared to make criticism of Lukashenko’s Covid-19 policies (the Belarusian leader failed to impose a draconian lockdown such as we’ve seen in many Western countries), on a NBC programme earlier in the year. (You can watch that here)

Also gunning for Lukashenko is the Economist, the bible for neoliberal globalists. This week, the magazine denounced the “West’s response” to what was going on in Belarus as “feeble.”

It referred to Lukashenko as “a 65-year-old dictator.” The language of the Economist has been unusually emotional of late, showing they want regime change in Minsk quite badly. Yet in January 2019 they referred to the Belarusian leader more respectfully as “Mr Lukashenko” and said he was “no ordinary politician.” That was when they thought he was upsetting Vladimir Putin and “cosying up to the West.”

One suspects that if Lukashenko announced he had won 80 percent of the vote but then said he was going to promptly apply to join NATO, the EU and sell off the entire economy to Western finance capital, as well as imposing a ‘Covid lockdown’, the Economist would not be quite so angry.

Hypocrisy was also on show from the very grand EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen. “We need additional sanctions against those who violated democratic values or abused human rights in Belarus,” von der Leyen declared on Twitter.

We are still of course waiting for the EU sanctions, additional or otherwise on Spain for the authorities’ crackdown on Catalan protesters in 2017 and the jailing of nine separatist leaders.

Or sanctions on France for the brutality meted out to the ‘Gilets Jaunes’ street protesters, who did not receive globalist approval.

How convenient after all that has gone on in 2020, that Belarus and the big bad Lukashenko is there to allow Western virtue signallers and self-proclaimed ‘liberals’ the chance to show off how much they care about ‘democracy’ again. While supporting the curtailing of basic human freedoms still further in their own countries.

Neil Clark is a journalist, writer, broadcaster and blogger. His award winning blog can be found at http://www.neilclark66.blogspot.com. He tweets on politics and world affairs @NeilClark66

August 19, 2020 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Progressive Hypocrite | , , , , | Leave a comment

Bolivia general strike exposes Canada’s undemocratic policy

By Yves Engler · August 7, 2020

If Indigenous lives really mattered to the Trudeau Liberals the Canadian government would not treat the most Indigenous country in the Americas the way it has.

Canada’s policy towards Bolivia is looking ever more undemocratic with each passing day. A general strike launched on Monday in the Andean nation is likely to further expose Canada’s backing for the alliance of economic elites, Christian extremists and security forces that deposed Bolivia’s first Indigenous president.

Hours after Evo Morales was ousted in November, foreign affairs minister Chrystia Freeland released a statement noting, “Canada stands with Bolivia and the democratic will of its people. We note the resignation of President Morales and will continue to support Bolivia during this transition and the new elections.” Freeland’s statement had no hint of criticism of Morales’ ouster while leaders from Argentina to Cuba, Venezuela to Mexico, condemned Morales’ forced resignation.

The anti-democratic nature of Canada’s position has grown starker with time. Recently, the coup government postponed elections for a third time. After dragging their feet on elections initially set for January the “interim” government has used the Covid-19 pandemic as an excuse to put off the poll until mid-October. But, the real reason for the latest postponement is that Morales’ long-time finance Minister, Luis Arce, is set to win the presidency in the first round. Coup President Jeanine Áñez, who previously promised not to run, is polling at around 13% and the main coup instigator, Luis Fernando Camacho, has even less popular support. To avoid an electoral drubbing, the coup government has sought to exclude Morales’ MAS party from the polls.

After ousting Morales the post-coup government immediately attacked Indigenous symbols and the army perpetrated a handful of massacres of anti-coup protesters. The unconstitutional “caretaker” regime shuttered multiple media outlets and returned USAID to the country, restarted diplomatic relations with Israel and joined the anti-Venezuela Lima Group. They also expelled 700 Cuban doctors, which has contributed to a surge of Covid-19 related deaths. In a recent five day period Bolivia’s police reported collecting 420 bodies from streets, houses, or vehicles in La Paz and Santa Cruz.

The pretext for Morales’ overthrow was a claim that the October 20, 2019 presidential election was flawed. Few disputed that Morales won the first round of the poll, but some claimed that he did not reach the 10% margin of victory, which was the threshold required to avoid a second-round runoff. The official result was 47.1 per cent for Morales and 36.5 per cent for US-backed candidate Carlos Mesa.

Global Affairs Canada bolstered right-wing anti-Morales protests by echoing the Trump administration’s criticism of Morales’ first round election victory. “It is not possible to accept the outcome under these circumstances,” said a Global Affairs statement on October 29. “We join our international partners in calling for a second round of elections to restore credibility in the electoral process.”

At the same time, Trudeau raised concerns about Bolivia’s election with other leaders. During a phone conversation with Chilean president Sebastián Piñera the Prime Minister criticized “election irregularities in Bolivia.” Ottawa also promoted and financed the OAS’ effort to discredit Bolivia’s presidential election.

After the October 20 presidential poll, the OAS immediately cried foul. The next day the organization released a statement expressing “its deep concern and surprise at the drastic and hard-to-explain change in the trend of the preliminary results [from the quick count] revealed after the closing of the polls.” Two days later they followed that statement up with a preliminary report that repeated their claim that “changes in the TREP [quick count] trend were hard to explain and did not match the other measurements available.”

But, the “hard-to-explain” changes cited by the OAS were entirely expected, as detailed in the Washington-based Centre for Economic Policy Research’s report “What Happened in Bolivia’s 2019 Vote Count? The Role of the OAS Electoral Observation Mission”. The CEPR analysis pointed out that Morales’ percentage lead over the second place candidate Carlos Mesa increased steadily as votes from rural, largely Indigenous, areas were tabulated. Additionally, the 47.1% of the vote Morales garnered aligned with pre-election polls and the vote score for his MAS party.

Subsequent investigations have corroborated CEPR’s initial analysis. A Washington Post commentary published by researchers at MIT’s Election Data and Science Lab was titled “Bolivia dismissed its October elections as fraudulent. Our research found no reason to suspect fraud.” More recently, the New York Times reported on a study by three other US academics suggesting the OAS audit was flawed. The story noted, “a close look at Bolivian election data suggests an initial analysis by the OAS that raised questions of vote-rigging — and helped force out a president — was flawed.”

But, the OAS’ statements gave oxygen to opposition protests. Their unsubstantiated criticism of the election was also widely cited internationally to justify Morales’ ouster. In response to OAS claims, protests in Bolivia and Washington and Ottawa saying they would not recognize Morales’s victory, the Bolivian president agreed to a “binding” OAS audit of the first round of the election. Unsurprisingly the OAS’ preliminary audit report alleged “irregularities and manipulation” and called for new elections overseen by a new electoral commission. Immediately after the OAS released its preliminary audit US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo went further, saying “all government officials and officials of any political organizations implicated in the flawed October 20 elections should step aside from the electoral process.” What started with an easy-to-explain discrepancy between the quick count and final results of the actual counting spiraled into the entire election is suspect and anyone associated with it must go.

At a Special Meeting of the OAS Permanent Council on Bolivia the representative of Antigua and Barbuda criticized the opaque way in which the OAS electoral mission to Bolivia released its statements and reports. She pointed out how the organization made a series of agreements with the Bolivian government that were effectively jettisoned. A number of Latin American countries echoed this view. For his part, Morales said the OAS “is in the service of the North American empire.”

US and Canadian representatives, on the other hand, applauded the OAS’ work in Bolivia. Canada’s representative to the OAS boasted that two Canadian technical advisers were part of the audit mission to Bolivia and that Canada financed the OAS effort that discredited Bolivia’s presidential election. Canada was the second largest contributor to the OAS, which received half its budget from Washington. In a statement titled “Canada welcomes results of OAS electoral audit mission to Bolivia” Freeland noted, “Canada commends the invaluable work of the OAS audit mission in ensuring a fair and transparent process, which we supported financially and through our expertise.”

A General strike this week in Bolivia demanding elections take place as planned on September 6 will put Canadian policy to the test.

August 7, 2020 Posted by | Progressive Hypocrite | , , | Leave a comment

PLO: “Israel is Implementing its Annexation Scheme on the Ground Without any Deterrence.”

By Ali Salam | IMEMC | August 3, 2020

European diplomats signed a letter denouncing Israel’s plans to begin construction on the E1 project in occupied East Jerusalem, the Palestinian WAFA News Agency reported.

Executive Member of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) pressured EU officials to act on its words, and force Israel to abandon its plans.

A European Union (EU) representative, with 15 ambassadors, recently submitted a letter in opposition to the Israeli Foreign Ministry, regarding its intention to start building in E1 area, east of occupied Jerusalem.

“We welcome the protest letter… however, we believe that the EU, as well as the governments of these 15 states (including Germany, France, Italy, and Spain) should… deter Israel from persisting on the path of illegality, impunity, and de facto annexation.” Dr. Hanan Ashrawi said.

“While the international community is concerned with the ‘possibility’ of annexation, Israel is implementing its scheme on the ground without any deterrence,” she continued, “This includes the siege and ethnic cleansing of Silwan, Al-‘Isawiya, and Wadi Al-Joz (Palestinian neighborhoods in East Jerusalem) by way of home demolitions and systemic violence.”

Dr. Ashrawi pressed that states “must not allow Israel to persist in this cynical ruse. The principle of accountability is undermined and rendered irrelevant when international actors insist on giving Israel a free pass on egregious violations of Palestinian rights and international law.”

August 3, 2020 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Progressive Hypocrite | , , , , , , | 3 Comments