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The Labour Party witch hunt: Will the real fomenters of anti-Semitism please stand up?

By Michael Lesher | American Herald Tribune | May 6, 2016

The so-called “anti-Semitism row” embroiling the United Kingdom’s Labour Party under its new leader, Jeremy Corbyn, is a fraud – a cynical fraud at that. Despite the best efforts of the notoriously tireless Israel lobby, not to mention an abundance of circling media sharks eager to seize upon the lobby’s every lurid accusation, not one actual anti-Semitic statement from a Labour politician has emerged to date.

Indeed, if the campaign has any effect at all, it will not be to eject anti-Semitism from British politics. On the contrary, it is likely to foment anti-Semitism where, up to now, little or none has existed.

It’s hard to exaggerate how ridiculous the witch hunt around Jeremy Corbyn has become. But you don’t have to take my word for that. If Anshel Pfeffer’s tortuous attempt this week to rationalize the charges of “anti-Semitism” is any indication of the merits of the smear campaign, not even its purveyors actually believe their own accusations.

Pfeffer – who published his piece in Israel’s liberal daily, Ha’aretz on May 1 – is a veteran reporter with a number of genuine stories to his credit. It stands to reason that if there were anything real behind the so-called anti-Semitism scandal, Pfeffer would find it. But not even Pfeffer can locate a single anti-Semitic slur to latch onto.

Instead, he’s reduced to redefining anti-Semitism – redefining it so broadly that it includes all criticism of Israel’s government. Pfeffer’s argument is that condemning crimes committed by Israel’s leadership is, in effect, an accusation against all Israelis, and that, since most Israelis are Jews, this means an implicit attack on Jews everywhere. Pfeffer doesn’t spell out this approach too carefully, and no wonder – if it were true, it would mean that any statement critical of, say, Bashar al-Assad would make the speaker an Islamophobe. But without this bowdlerized definition of anti-Semitism (according to Pfeffer, a critic of Israel’s illegal occupation is simply “someone who only hates Jews living in Israel”), Pfeffer’s whole attack on the Labour left would collapse.

Not even neutering the meaning of anti-Semitism is enough for Pfeffer’s purposes. To demonize critics of Israel he has to coin the peculiar notion of “anti-Jewish theories” as well. That is, to mention the Zionist movement’s early efforts to cooperate with Hitler’s government – as former mayor of London Ken Livingstone did in an off-the-cuff way while defending his colleague Naz Shah – is more or less historically accurate; certainly it isn’t an expression of bigotry. But if Jews don’t like to hear about such facts, that makes the comment an “anti-Jewish theory,” and of course anyone who would espouse an anti-Jewish theory must be an anti-Semite. Pfeffer complains that Corbyn and his supporters “are incapable of comprehending” this logic. I wonder why.

Pfeffer has more to say, but not a word of it is factual – it’s a low-rent right-wing conspiracy theory about how all socialists secretly hate Jews because they’re, well, white. Pfeffer can’t for the life of him imagine any other reason why some politicians might object to mass murder, apartheid or ethnic cleansing of Palestinians – he calls this a “Marxist class-warfare perspective” and the product of “revised history” – but he does get good and sore over the fact that Labour MP John Mann, who had the “decency” (Pfeffer’s word) to smear Livingstone on television as a “Hitler apologist,” actually got a mild reprimand for the slander. Frankly, people with moral priorities like those give me the creeps.

But again, nobody has to take my word for any of this. The facts – which people like Pfeffer studiously ignore – speak for themselves. There is no anti-Semitism scandal in the U.K. A poll conducted by the highly respected Pew Research Center just last year found that only 7% of respondents in that country held an “unfavorable view” of Jews, as compared with 19% – nearly three times as many – who expressed such views about Muslims. And as for Labour, the hysterical rush to suspend Shah and Livingstone on the flimsiest of charges (not to mention Shah’s groveling apologies for some innocuous statements made long before she even ran for office) hardly bespeaks an anti-Jewish bias.

What’s more, for all Pfeffer’s posturing, neither Zionism’s past nor Israel’s present is above critical scrutiny. The Zionist movement, though certainly not allied with Nazism, did agree with Hitler on one important point: namely, that Jews are a nation – not a religious group – and consequently do not really belong in any European country. That’s why much of established British Jewry spoke out sharply against the Balfour Declaration in 1917: they recognized it as a blow to the hopes of British Jews who wanted equal rights in their own country. For Zionists, as for Nazis, such hopes were dangerous.

That’s a matter of history, but Israel’s crimes – including the wanton killing of civilians in Gaza less than two years ago – are urgent contemporary realities. The witch hunt for Labour Party “anti-Semites” is really a crude attempt to silence the critics of those crimes. And let’s not delude ourselves: the targets of that campaign understand this perfectly well.

That’s the ultimate irony about the “anti-Semitism” canard. The witch hunt isn’t uncovering any anti-Semitism. But it may go a long way toward creating it. As the redoubtable scholar Norman Finkelstein recently said, the attacks on left-Labour politicians, supported at every step by Israeli hasbara, are “fanning the embers of hate and creating new discord between Jews and Muslims by going after Naz Shah… [S]he’s being crucified, her career wrecked, her life ruined, her future in tatters, branded an ‘anti-Semite’ and a closet Nazi, and inflicted with these rituals of self-abasement. It’s not hard to imagine what her Muslim constituents must think now about Jews.”

May 6, 2016 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Haaretz Columnists Propose Genocide In Lebanon, Promote Right of ‘Artists’ To Rape Young Girls ‘For Their Art’

This was Haaretz's original headline for the Etzioni article

Haaretz’s original headline for an article by Amitai Etzioni, a noted Israeli-American academic.
By Richard Silverstein | Mint Press | March 10, 2016

SEATTLE — Haaretz is famed in many circles as Israel’s leading liberal newspaper. In 2011, the New Yorker’s managing editor, David Remnick, deemed it “easily the most liberal newspaper in Israel and arguably the most important liberal institution in a country that has moved inexorably to the right in the past decade.”

The newspaper is part of an Israeli journalistic dynasty founded in the 1930s by Gershom Schocken, a Jewish-German immigrant. His son, Amos, is now publisher. Remnick had these glowing things to say about Amos:

“He is … a singular force in Israeli journalism on issues such as free speech, equal rights for Israeli Arabs, the independence of the Supreme Court, and the exposure of military abuse.”

However, analysis of two recent opinion columns published by Israel’s “most important liberal institution” reveals another side to the story.

Distinguished Israeli-American academic calls for annihilation of Lebanon

Amitai Etzioni, a noted Israeli-American academic, published an alarming piece last month arguing that Israel should not endanger its own troops, who he claimed would be expected to identify and dismantle many of Hezbollah’s 100,000 rockets before they could be fired. Rather, Israel should use a devastating weapons system that would save Israeli lives while annihilating large swaths of territory in which Lebanese civilians live.

Etzioni, 87, is the University Professor at George Washington University, where he serves as director of the Institute for Communitarian Policy Studies, a think tank. The noted sociologist is best known for his advocacy of communitarianism, an academic theory which, in some ways, is a perfect distillation of Israeli attitudes toward individual rights. Etzioni argues that while such rights are important, they must be carefully calibrated so they don’t interfere with the interests of society as a whole. This is precisely the way in which the Israeli national security state persuades citizens that protecting their security is a greater good that justifies sacrificing the interests of the individual.

Etzioni’s Haaretz op-ed was originally titled, “Should Israel Flatten Beirut to Destroy Hezbollah’s Missiles?” That title has been significantly softened to tone down the genocidal content of the piece itself; it now reads: “Should Israel Consider Using Devastating Weapons Against Hezbollah Missiles?”

From this brief excerpt, perhaps you can judge for yourselves which title is more accurate and why it was changed:

“I asked two American military officers what other options Israel has. They both pointed to Fuel-Air Explosives [FAE]. These are bombs that disperse an aerosol cloud of fuel which is ignited by a detonator, producing massive explosions. The resulting rapidly expanding wave flattens all buildings within a considerable range.

Such weapons obviously would be used only after the population was given a chance to evacuate the area. Still, as we saw in Gaza, there are going to be civilian casualties.”

Etzioni vastly understates the lethality of what are otherwise known as FAEs or thermobaric weapons. The Guardian quotes a clinical description of their impact from the Marine Corps Gazette :

“Thermobaric, or ‘fuel-air’ weapons … form a cloud of volatile gases or finely powdered explosives. ‘This cloud is then ignited and the subsequent fireball sears the surrounding area while consuming the oxygen in this area. The lack of oxygen creates an enormous overpressure. … Personnel under the cloud are literally crushed to death. Outside the cloud area, the blast wave travels at some 3,000 meters per second. … As a result, a fuel-air explosive can have the effect of a tactical nuclear weapon without residual radiation. …  Those personnel caught directly under the aerosol cloud will die from the flame or overpressure. For those on the periphery of the strike, the injuries can be severe. Burns, broken bones, contusions from flying debris and blindness may result. Further, the crushing injuries from the overpressure can create air embolism within blood vessels, concussions, multiple internal hemorrhages in the liver and spleen, collapsed lungs, rupture of the eardrums and displacement of the eyes from their sockets.’”

Russia used FAEs in Chechnya, and the United States employed them in Fallujah. Some experts on the laws of war have declared the use of FAEs a war crime. In 1992, Michael Ratner, founder of the Center for Constitutional Rights and one of the world’s leading legal experts on these matters, noted that FAEs violate international law:

“The use of asphyxiating gases is prohibited. The U.S. violated this by its use of fuel-air explosive bombs on Iraqi frontline troops; these bombs are terror bombs which can burn the oxygen over a surface of one or two square kilometers, destroying human life by asphyxiation.”

He further noted that FAEs are “outlawed by the Hague and Geneva Conventions, which prohibit the use of weapons causing unnecessary harm to combatants.”

It should’ve been clear to Haaretz editors that they were publishing an op-ed that not only urged Israel to commit war crimes in the next Lebanon war, but that these weapons would also open Israel to charges of genocide given the extraordinarily high death toll that would ensue.

The Israeli Defense Forces itself has developed a similar military strategy for its attacks against Hezbollah. The Dahiya Doctrine, developed by Maj. Gen. Gadi Eisenkot, who would go on to become chief of staff of the IDF, argued that Israel must wreak maximum damage on the civilian neighborhoods of Beirut in which Hezbollah was based. Such devastation would force the Islamist group to pay a maximum price for its attacks on Israel, he asserted. This is precisely what happened during the 2006 Lebanon war, when the Shiite neighborhood of Dahiya, in which Hezbollah’s leadership took refuge, was reduced to rubble. Over 1,000 Lebanese civilians were killed in that conflict.

The strategy appears to have had little deterrent effect. Hezbollah now possesses more than double the rockets it did in 2006 and poses an even fiercer threat to Israeli targets when the next war breaks out.

Etzioni’s claim that FAEs would be used only after civilians were warned to evacuate the target area is pure sophistry. Civilians in war zones have no shelter or refuge. There is nowhere they can go to escape the military onslaught. This has been proven repeatedly both in Gaza and Lebanon.

Israel makes no attempt on the battlefield to provide sites where civilians may shelter safely. It has repeatedly attacked locations such as U.N. schools, killing massive numbers of civilians. In Lebanon, it has attacked convoys of civilians fleeing combat zones and U.N. facilities where civilians have taken refuge. Faced with such a dilemma, many civilians would prefer to take their chances and remain in their homes.

Further, Israel’s attempts at “warning” civilians are feeble at best: The IDF sends targeted communities SMS messages and drops fliers from airplanes warning them to flee. How does a frightened resident whose cellphone battery has died or who is too frightened to venture out of his or her home learn about Israeli orders to flee?

The most cruel and calculating portion of Etzioni’s essay is his call for Israel to recruit pro-Israel “experts” to join war games in which they would be called upon to use these diabolical weapons:

“ … The time to raise this issue is long before Israel may be forced to use FAEs. One way this can be achieved is by inviting foreign military experts and public intellectuals, who are not known to be hostile to Israel, to participate in war games in which they would be charged with fashioning a response to massive missile attacks on Israeli high rise buildings, schools, hospitals, and air bases.

In this way, one hopes, that there be a greater understanding, if not outright acceptance, of the use of these powerful weapons, given that nothing else will do.”

This would supposedly condition the world for future Israeli use of FAEs. Etzioni is essentially calling for pre-approval of war crimes. These enablers would be offering Israel a kind of “Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval” for genocide.

Etzioni: Falsification of historical memory and Nakba denial

Amitai Etzioni has long served as a mouthpiece for the whitewashing of Israel’s moral sins. In March 2014, he wrote an op-ed in the Daily Forward in which he attempted to recount the history of the village where his family settled after fleeing Germany in 1935 and arriving in pre-state Israel:

“In 1935, as Nazi influence grew, my family escaped, joining four other families of the same background to form a new settlement in Palestine in 1936. They named it Kfar Shmaryahu (it’s next to Herzliya). The five families… cleared the rocks, drilled a water well, paved a road before erecting a bunch of modest homes and farming the land. All this was done on previously unoccupied land — land that was lying fallow next to an Arab village called Sidney Alley. …

The relationship between my parents’ village and Sidney Alley varied over the years, ranging from comfortable to tense. However, as far as I recall, no shots were fired, and most assuredly, no one was driven off land or out of a home. Those who lived unmolested in Sidney Alley until 1948 left at that point. We were told that they took with them keys to our homes that they somehow acquired, and had agreed among themselves who will get which of our homes after the seven Arab militaries that attacked the weak and newborn Israel defeated it. I never saw any evidence that supports this tale, but I know firsthand that no Israeli forces drove out the people of Sidney Alley.”

Soon after Etzioni’s account was published, Maher Mughrabi, a Palestinian-Australian foreign news editor for the Australian Age, exposed how woefully inadequate Etzioni’s account and his memory are. In a Letter to the Editor of the Forward, which he also shared with me via email, he wrote:

“Etzioni recalls the neighbouring village’s name as ‘Sidney Alley.’ This surely must strike anyone with an ear for Arab idiom as improbable. … However, if you think a bit about what this place might be called in Arabic, it turns out the mosque is of Sidna (or Sayyidna, meaning ‘our lord’) Ali. And it turns out that if you are not Etzioni, you can remember a history of displacement from this place.”


The mosque of the ethnically-cleansed Palestinian village of Sidna

Further, the Palestinians of Sidna Ali were indeed driven from their homes not just by “shots fired” but by cold-blooded murder.

Zochrot, an Israeli NGO dedicated to memorializing Palestinian villages destroyed in the Nakba, offers a fuller account of the events leading to the tragedy of Sidna Ali. A family in the village owned a dairy and orchard on its outskirts. Their Jewish tenant invited Lehi militants to train on the farm. Someone appears to have reported this to British authorities, who then raided the farm, resulting in the killing of four Jewish militants and a commander.

"Villagers of Sidna Ali drawing water from communal well. (source: Palestine Remembered)

Villagers of Sidna Ali drawing water from communal well (source: Palestine Remembered)

To exact revenge, Lehi returned to Sidna Ali, captured five family members, lined them up against a wall and executed them. The killers deliberately permitted a few members of the family to flee so they could spread the word of the massacre among the Palestinian population. At that point, many remaining villagers saw the handwriting on the wall and fled in terror (this was in the period before the war and ensuring mass expulsions had happened). Those who did not flee were forced to flee later by menacing gunfire sprayed by Jewish forces.

You can see that one of America’s towering academic figures leaves much to be desired when recounting Israeli history. If he wrote as sloppily in his own field as he does on these subjects, he would be labelled a fraud. But instead, the pages of Israel’s leading liberal newspaper are opened wide for him to call for mass murder against Lebanese civilians.

One has to wonder how a newspaper editor decides a contribution from Etzioni about Hezbollah is even relevant. He is not a philosopher of war or ethicist like Asa Kasher or Princeton’s Michael Walzer. He is not an expert on military strategy or Israeli Defense Forces affairs. What is Etzioni’s expertise on the subject?

And even if he had expertise, how does one justify publishing an op-ed calling for genocide? It would appear that Haaretz has, in some fundamental way, gone off the rails.

Haaretz literary editor approves of rape in pursuit of artistic ‘excellence’

This becomes even more clear in the second example of a woefully misguided piece published by Haaretz. In 2013, a popular Israeli entertainer, Eyal Golan, was investigated for allegedly raping teenage girls. His father was later convicted of pimping girls to his cronies, though no charges were ever brought against Golan. In response to an Israeli TV interviewer excoriating him last month for his dissolute personal life, he responded that he made no claim to be a moral exemplar or, as he put it, “the Pope.” On the other hand, and paradoxically, he called himself a “moral man.”

Eyal Golan enjoying the lush life with female admirer.

Eyal Golan enjoying the lush life with female admirer

On March 5, Benny Ziffer, the newspaper’s literary editor, responded to a particularly pugnacious recent Israeli TV interview with Golan by a noted female program host. Ziffer’s column launched a crusade not just to redeem Golan’s reputation, but to claim that it is the right of all artists to engage in antisocial behavior (like raping young girls) as long as they do so for their art. Further, he claims that societies which persecute such creative souls are suppressing freedom of expression and the artistic impulse (my translation is from the Hebrew piece):

“Cultured nations know that in order for art to exist and creativity to flourish, artists must enjoy moral privileges and freedoms not available to others. Even tyrants harboring no tolerance for individual freedom understand that artists must be permitted to live a Bohemian existence; and that this is part of the unwritten agreement between a society and its artists, who are offered extensive latitude under ethical norms which permit wild behavior, especially in the sexual realm.

Artists from Goethe to Eyal Golan hover intoxicatedly in the air above the heights of artistry and creativity. They must feel most intensely those things that are considered the basest sexual urges in life, like intercourse with young female admirers. Without this, there would be no creativity, despite all the pain this is liable to cause these young women, whose lives may have been damaged.”

The journalistic crime committed here is rendered even more severe by the fact that the author is neither freelancer nor columnist, but senior editorial staff.

Again, one must wonder what Ziffer’s editor was thinking when he or she approved such journalistic trash for publication. Besides the claims in this passage being pure intellectual bunkum (since when did Goethe ever justify raping young girls in order to delve deeper into his artistic impulses?), did no one at the paper stop to consider the backlash that would stem from this rape apologia?

Haaretz readers have started a petition (Hebrew) calling for the firing of Ziffer. It’s doubtful this will have any impact on Haaretz publisher Amos Schocken, whose approach to criticism is to dismiss it with hurt indignation.

I can attest to this personally. In 2012, the newspaper published an expose about Israeli museums which did not offer Arabic-language inscriptions for exhibits, as required under a law guaranteeing multi-lingual accessibility for publicly-funded cultural institutions. I wrote to the reporter, asking why Haaretz itself never published in Arabic. I argued that doing so would offer a pioneering statement from the nation’s leading liberal daily about the critical importance of embracing the Arabic-speaking Palestinian minority. I suggested, to that end, Haaretz consider publishing an Arabic-language supplement.

Instead of a response from the reporter, Schocken himself replied disdainfully that if I thought such a project was so important that I should find him funding to support it. It was a response, doubtless to say, I found disingenuous, as it wasn’t my job to secure investments in his newspaper.

The following year, Haaretz published its first article in Arabic, an editorial urging Palestinians to “get out and vote.” Ironically, many members of the Palestinian minority do not vote precisely because the institutions of the Jewish majority (like Haaretz ) are largely closed to them. Generally they enjoy second or third-class rights within society, thanks in part to the patronizing approach of elite Ashkenazi Jewish institutions like it.

Haaretz refuses to publish Ziffer’s column in English edition

It should come as no surprise that Ziffer’s op-ed was not translated into English or published in the paper’s English edition. The editors there perhaps had a better understanding of their own readers and determined there was no need to inflame them. But in truth, this is a form of self-censorship. If you want to publish misogynist trash, why only publish it in Hebrew? Why not proclaim proudly to the rest of the English-speaking world what your journalistic values are?

If, as David Remnick argues, Haaretz is the best of Israeli journalism, what does that tell us about Israeli society in general and its Fourth Estate in particular? It tells us that the weight of being a garrison nation in a state of perpetual war has corroded whatever liberal values Haaretz may have once championed. It tells that no matter how much higher are the standards Haaretz upholds than those of their competitors, they are indelibly stained by historical sins of the their society.

Breaking: Managing editor cancels Ziffer’s weekly column

When reached for comment on this story, Aluf Benn, the newspaper’s managing editor, declined, but he did allude to a major forthcoming development.

Shortly thereafter, on Wednesday, Israeli business news site Globes reported than Benn had decided to cancel Ziffer’s weekly column in response to the March 5 piece.

In his final column, published on Wednesday, Ziffer apologized for what he wrote. He added, oddly, that it was all part of a twisted game he played on behalf of his audience:

“I entered into the role of provocateur [Author’s Note: literally, “playful devil”], and the game was good and yielded rewards. The audience was enthusiastic and begged for more and more columns in which I played the the game of provocateur. I reaped success. Together with the intoxication of success, this blurred within me the boundaries between the game and reality.”

Haaretz later published Ziffer’s apology in its English edition.  But without the context of the original article (published only in Hebrew), readers of the English edition have no idea what “monstrosity” Ziffer is apologizing for.  And that’s probably the way Haaretz’s editors prefer it. Rather than being fully transparent, it has the effect of further concealing the original offense.

Still, Ziffer remains as literary editor of the paper. He will also continue writing other articles for the paper. Presumably, Benn believes that by giving Ziffer a lower profile and “disappearing” his byline, readers — especially female readers — will be able to forget this disaster. In the past heyday of Israeli macho behavior, perhaps Haaretz could’ve gotten away with this. But can you imagine the Washington Post or New York Times in this day and age permitting its literary editor to write such swill and not firing him? The very thought seems preposterous.

March 14, 2016 Posted by | Deception, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Israel bars entry of Polish humanitarian worker, halts irrigation project

Al-Akhbar | September 11, 2013

Israel’s Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld a decision to bar entry to the Jewish state to a Polish humanitarian worker for having unspecified links to “terrorist elements”.

Although Kamil Qandil had a valid visa when he landed at Ben Gurion airport near Tel Aviv on September 2, he was refused entry by immigration officials and held at the airport as he filed an appeal.

Upholding the ban, Chief Justice Asher Grunis cited “new material which points to the appellant having contacts with terrorist elements, which was not known at the time when he was granted the visa,” without elaborating.

“I have done nothing which could have harmed the state of Israel,” Qandil, who has a Palestinian father and Polish mother, told the court during the hearing. Grunis responded that he was “perhaps not aware of his actions.”

Part of the hearing was held in the presence only of the judges and agents of Shin Bet, Israel’s internal security service.

“The hearing today and the court’s verdict did little to clear the mystery about the allegations against Kamil,” his lawyer, Yadin Elam, told reporters.

The Association of International Development Agencies (AIDA), which groups more than 80 organizations, said Qandil was detained on arrival to work on a project to supply water to Palestinians in a part of the southern West Bank under full Israeli control.

“He said that the biggest losers would be the villagers of the south Hebron hills where the project is located and…the Polish taxpayers who fund it,” a relative told AFP.

AIDA said PHA was seeking to refurbish rainwater cisterns on which Palestinian farmers depend for irrigation. Israel has demolished several refurbished cisterns, triggering a diplomatic response from Warsaw, AIDA said.

Shin Bet told Haaretz newspaper on Monday that Qandil was refused entry “due to security information that exists about him.”

(AFP, Al-Akhbar)

September 11, 2013 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Solidarity and Activism | , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Israel bars entry of Polish humanitarian worker, halts irrigation project

Egypt denies purchasing military equipment from Israel

MEMO | June 12, 2013

The spokesman of the Egyptian Army, Staff Colonel Ahmed Mohamed Ali, on Wednesday denied that his country had bought military wares from Israel.

An Israeli newspaper reported early this week that Israel had sold military wares to Pakistan and another four Arab countries, including Egypt. Harretz report was based on data issued by the British Government’s Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS), which oversees security exports.

The report said that these countries had purchased amounts of developed military equipment between 2008 and 2012.

According to the BIS report, this equipment included unmanned aircraft vehicles, radar systems, electronic warfare systems, head-up display (HUD) cockpit parts for fighter jets and aircraft engines, optical target acquisition systems, components of training aircraft and military electronic systems.

Ali wrote on his Facebook page that the militarisation of Egypt’s Armed Forces follows strict guidelines which guarantee what is called “product security.” These are obligatory rules that all military branches are committed to.

Similarly, Pakistan also denied that it bought military equipment from Israel based on information published by Haaretz in the same report.

The Islamabad spokesman for the Directorate of Inter-Services Public Relations denied the report. “The report is misleading and not based on facts,” The Hindu reported him as saying.

The Egyptian military official affirmed that his country is following credible measures regarding weapon purchases. However he said that the policy had “high costs in light of the new global system.”

He also called for the need to ensure that information reported about the Egyptian Armed Forces was reliable and accused the mass media of attempting to shake the credibility of the Egyptian Armed Forces with their people.

June 13, 2013 Posted by | Deception, Mainstream Media, Warmongering | , , , , , | Comments Off on Egypt denies purchasing military equipment from Israel

Israel bars reports on secret prisoner

Al-Akhbar | February 12, 2013

Israel’s Office of the Prime Minister on Tuesday summoned the owners and top editors of country’s media establishments to forbid them from publishing reports on a prisoner who had been secretly jailed in 2010.

Haaretz reported that the office called an “emergency meeting” with the Israeli Editors Committee where they were reportedly ordered to “withhold publication of information pertaining to an incident that is very embarrassing to a certain government agency.”

The order comes in response to a new investigative report by Australia’s ABC TV news program Foreign Correspondent which alleges to have revealed the identity of a former inmate in Israel’s Ayalon Prison who was found dead in his cell in 2010.

The secret inmate, known as “Prisoner X,” was reportedly kept in a cell built for the man who assassinated former Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin.

Haaretz had earlier posted, then quickly removed a story linking to the Australian report, presumably under government orders.

At 12:38pm, the newspaper Tweeted the story, which was titled: “Report: Security prisoner who committed suicide in Israeli prison in 2010 was Australian.” Less than two hours later a user pointed out that the story had vanished.

No details had previously been released about the prisoner’s identity or reasons behind his incarceration.

The ABC report, which came out Tuesday, identified the man as Ben Zygier, an Australian citizen who had been living in Israel for 10 years before his death.

The report said it had found evidence to suggest that Zygier had been recruited by Israel’s Mossad spy agency, but that it remained unclear why he was being secretly held.

An Israeli court order – issued shortly after his imprisonment in 2010 – that barred media from covering the story remains in effect, the report added.

The prisoner was found hanging from his cell after being held for several months in an apparent suicide.

Media scholars have written on Israel’s tight media restrictions over issues it claims may compromise the security of the Jewish state.

February 12, 2013 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance | , , | Comments Off on Israel bars reports on secret prisoner

Judaization = Racism? Really?

By Paul Larudee | January 23, 2013

On Sunday, January 20, 2013, the “progressive” Israeli newspaper Haaretz published a short editorial titled “‘Judaization’ is racism”.

Before you get your hopes up, let me tell you that the editorial is a criticism of Shimon Gapso, the Jewish mayor of Upper Nazareth, a community intended to diminish the Arab character of Nazareth, the largest Palestinian Arab city inside what most of the world recognizes as Israel.

Founded in 1957, Upper Nazareth was given priority for development and expansion as part of a campaign by Yitzhak Rabin. The impetus was a trip that Rabin made to the Galilee in 1975. At one point he found himself in the Carmel valley. Looking around, he saw nothing but Palestinian farms and villages. “Am I in Israel or in Syria?” he uttered, whereupon he lent his weight to the mission to “judaize the Galilee”. Upper Nazareth is one of the Jewish communities that became an important of that mission. It was intended to limit the growth of Nazareth and ultimately marginalize or displace it.

Ironically, however, the “Jewish character” of Upper Nazareth is itself being compromised, as Palestinians from Nazareth find that there is no longer enough room in the older city to accommodate their growing population. In response, the mayor of Upper Nazareth has tried to make the city as unfriendly as possible to its non-Jewish residents, including opposition to Arabic language schools in the town and a much-publicized ban on Christmas trees. (Most of the Palestinians in Upper Nazareth are Christian.) The Haaretz editorial is a criticism of the “benighted racist position that sees the presence of Arabs in the Galilee or anywhere else as a national threat.”

Nice words, but is not the entire Zionist project one of “judaization”? Is that not how its founders conceived it? Is not Israel itself the product of “judaization”? What is different about Upper Nazareth? What about the expulsion of the Bedouin in the Naqab (“Negev”)? Is the confiscation and demolition of Palestinian homes in Jerusalem not merely an extension of the ethnic cleansing of 1948? How are the orders to evacuate and obliterate eight villages in the hills south of al-Khalil (“Hebron”) not consistent with the aims of Zionism?

If Haaretz wishes to oppose judaization, why not start with the judaization of 1948? Let them insist upon inviting all Palestinians back to their homes. Let them demand elimination of an immigration policy that is for Jews only. Let them call upon the Custodian for Absentee Property – who is responsible for the more than 80% of Israel that was confiscated from Palestinians in 1948 – to welcome the absentees back and return their property to them, with payment for damages and compensation for 65 years of unauthorized usage. Let them oppose a policy of separate states for Arabs and Jews (forgetting that many are both or neither).

Judaization is just another word for Zionism. And yes, it’s racism.

January 23, 2013 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Shepherd Shot by Israeli Army Denied Right to Sue

By Kelly Joiner | International Middle East Media Center Editorial Group & Agencies | August 10, 2012

An Israeli commander has ruled that a Palestinian shepherd who was shot by the Israeli military three years ago will not be allowed to sue for damages.

The Israeli daily Ha’aretz reported that the military signed a document disallowing the three year old lawsuit filed by Mohammed Shamasna, but the military will pay 10,000 NIS to cover three years of legal fees.

Shamasna was shot in November of 2007 and had to undergo several operations and a lengthy rehabilitation process.

According to Israeli military regulations, if an Israeli officer finds that someone is injured during a necessary military operation, the wounded person cannot make a claim for damages. However Shamasna’s lawyer Laviv Habib stated that he believed that the order was signed simply to block the case from going forward since it took more than three years to declare that it was a military operation.

Coverage of this incident in Ha’aretz favored the view that the Israeli military was being generous in providing money for legal fees. Questions about the need for military accountability for the shooting of civilians during a military operation were not raised. Nor was the thought that someone who was shot would have incurred medical fees in addition some loss of livelihood given it would be difficult to maintain work as a shepherd following this type of incident.

August 10, 2012 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism | , , , | Comments Off on Shepherd Shot by Israeli Army Denied Right to Sue

Israel convicts journalist for disclosing assassinations

Al Akhbar | July 5, 2012

An Israeli journalist who drew on leaked army documents to report the deliberate assassinations of Palestinian leaders was convicted on Thursday, but spared jail time in a plea bargain.

Uri Blau of Haaretz newspaper will do four months community service after confessing to reduced charges of possessing classified information without authorization but “with no intent to harm national security,” Israel’s State Attorney’s Office said in a statement.

Prosecutors had earlier stated Blau could face more serious espionage charges. That provoked protests from journalists who argued Israel’s reputation for media freedom was at stake.

Blau reported in 2008 that top army officers in the occupied West Bank had given shoot-to-kill orders to troops chasing Palestinian gunmen.

The front-page story was based on documents given to Blau by former army conscript Anat Kamm, who had downloaded them, and hundreds of others, from her computer while a clerk with the military’s high command.

Kamm was jailed for four and a half years in October under a separate plea bargain.

Human rights groups have criticized Israel’s policy of assassinating Palestinian leaders since the early days of a Palestinian uprising in 2000.

Haaretz said charging Blau was “unfortunate and sets a precedent in terms of its ramifications on the freedom of press in Israel, and especially on the ability to cover the security apparatus.” Other Israeli journalists echoed the condemnation.

Blau’s plea bargain is subject to formal approval by Tel Aviv District Court.

A recent Reporters Without Borders study ranked Israel 92nd out of 179 countries in terms of press freedom, behind countries such as Congo, Kenya and Serbia.

July 5, 2012 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Full Spectrum Dominance, War Crimes | , , , , | Comments Off on Israel convicts journalist for disclosing assassinations

Israeli police caught robbing Palestinian workers

Ma’an – May 31, 2012

Israeli police gather near Sheikh Jarrah in East Jerusalem. (MaanImages/Mimmi Nietula, File)

TEL AVIV, Israel — Three Israeli policemen were arrested Wednesday on suspicion of beating and stealing from Palestinian workers in Jerusalem, the Israeli daily Haaretz reported.

A police representative told an Israeli court on Thursday that Uziel Hanun, Osama al-Sahly and Reuven Dhokerker regularly used threats to escort Palestinian workers into alleys in the Old City.

“Those who didn’t have money were beaten and sent home, those who did were also beaten, and their money stolen,” the court was told.

Hanun, al-Sahly and Dhokerker were arrested Wednesday after being caught “in the act,” Haaretz reported.

Police officials believe the robberies were systematic, the report said.

The police officers allegedly attacked a worker from Ramallah and took his wages. He then had to ask for money to get home, the police representative told the court.

May 31, 2012 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Subjugation - Torture | , , , | Comments Off on Israeli police caught robbing Palestinian workers

Report: Israel issued 13,000 demolition orders against Palestinian real estate

Palestine Information Center – 26/05/2012

WEST BANK — Haaretz newspaper said the Israeli civil administration issued 13,000 demolition warnings against Palestinians accused of unlicensed construction in Area C of the West Bank.

The newspaper stated in a report that Israel intensified its construction restrictions on the Palestinian citizens in the villages and towns of the West Bank and seeks to prevent them from building through creating criminal files against them.

It said the civil administration increased the issuance of severe penalties against the Palestinians in all villages and towns located within Area C under Israel’s control.

Its report underlined that the civil administration was active recently in the demolition of many Palestinian homes and structures including schools in Al-Khalil city at the pretext of unlicensed construction.

The report pointed to the UN office for the coordination of humanitarian affairs’ recent report which condemned Israel’s restrictions on construction permits for Palestinians and its demolition of their homes while encouraging settlement construction.

May 26, 2012 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Subjugation - Torture | , , , , | Comments Off on Report: Israel issued 13,000 demolition orders against Palestinian real estate