Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Return of the Bad OLD Middle East

The Return of the Bad Old Middle East
By: Steven Plaut

Date: Wednesday, December 31 2008

For most of the past 16 years or so, a seemingly benign specter has been
haunting the world - namely, the notion that there exists a New Middle
East, one that plays by rules very different from those in the Bad Old
Middle East.

Beginning with the first of the Oslo Accords in the early 1990s, Israel
was launched by its own political leadership into a "peace process" whose
main axiom was that the Old Middle East was dead and gone.

Oslo was based on the assumption that what was needed to resolve the
conflict was a sincere willingness on Israel's part to reach an
accommodation with the Arab world through unilateral concessions and
especially through Israel's acknowledging the legitimacy of Palestinian
demands for statehood.

But as we enter the year 2009, the conclusion is unavoidable that there is
no such thing as a New Middle East. The Bad Old Middle East keeps
reasserting itself - with a vengeance.

It is crucial at this point in history for all to abandon the campaign of
peace through make-believe that has governed efforts at resolving the
conflict since late 1992. No progress can be made until the world renews
its acquaintance with Middle East reality and stares it straight in its
unpleasant face. Unhappy truths and principles must again be understood
and internalized. The most important ones follow.

I. Arab terrorism and military aggression are not caused by Israeli
occupation but rather by the removal of Israeli occupation.

Since Oslo, the working hypothesis of the Israeli government, endorsed by
nearly everyone on the planet, has been that the most urgent task at hand
was to end the Israeli "occupation" and remove Israel from its position of
control over the lives of Palestinian Arabs.

The Israeli Left and its amen chorus in the international media have been
repeating for so many years that the ultimate cause of Palestinian
terrorism and Arab grievances is the "occupation" of "Palestinian lands"
by Israel that few are capable any longer of thinking about that assertion
critically. It is wrong. The main cause of anti-Israel terrorism today is
the removal of Israeli occupation from Palestinian Arabs.

This is so obvious that it is a major intellectual challenge to explain
why so few people understand it. Israel ended its occupation of the Gaza
Strip in its entirety in 2004 and evicted all Jews who had been living
there. The result was the massive ongoing rocket assaults launched from
the Gaza Strip against Sderot, Ashkelon, and other towns in the south of

The Israeli occupation of southern Lebanon was unilaterally ended in the
year 2000 by then-Israeli prime minister Ehud Barak. The direct result of
that move was the launching of 4,000 Katyusha rockets from Lebanon against
northern Israel in the summer of 2006 and several times that number now
poised to strike Israel.

The worst waves of Palestinian suicide attacks were directly triggered by
the early Oslo withdrawals - before which there were no suicide bombings.

The only possible exception to the rule that removal of Israeli occupation
causes terrorism has been the Sinai Peninsula, which is largely empty. Yet
given the role of the Sinai and its Egyptian-sponsored smuggling networks
in providing a pipeline for rockets and explosives to Hamas in Gaza, it is
not even clear that Israel's withdrawal from Sinai is an exception to this

There can be no doubt that a complete Israeli withdrawal from the West
Bank and a return to pre-1967 borders would trigger a massive rocket and
terror assault against the remaining rump areas of Israel, launched from
the "liberated" lands in the West Bank. The same thing would result from
relinquishing the Golan Heights to Syria.

There are worse things in the world than occupation, and the experiences
of the past few years have demonstrated how much worse are the
consequences that follow the removal of Israeli occupation. The inevitable
consequence of a complete withdrawal by Israel to its 1967 borders would
be a replay of 1967, when the Arab world hoped to achieve the military
annihilation of Israel inside its Green Line borders. This time, though,
the Arabs would be using 21st century military technology.

Academics can debate about whether animosity to Israel was itself
initially stoked by the years of Palestinians living under occupation. But
in fact there was more than sufficient Palestinian animosity and terrorism
long before Israel occupied anything at all in the 1967 Six-Day War. Be
that as it may, progress today can occur only if the starting point is the
understanding that removal of Israeli occupation causes terror and

II. Israeli goodwill concessions do not trigger goodwill among Arabs, they
trigger Arab aggression and violence.

The Arabs interpret such goodwill measures as admission of weakness on
Israel's part and as demonstrations of Israeli vulnerability and
destructibility. More generally, the axiom that Israeli niceness toward
Arabs can generate Arab moderation, reasonableness, and friendliness is
also false. It cannot.

Attempts at buying Arab moderation through demonstrations of Jewish
self-restraint and niceness go back decades and predate Israel's
independence (back then it was termed havlaga). They have never worked.
Present-day attempts to win over Arabs with niceness and restraint range
from affirmative action programs that benefit Arabs, to turning a blind
eye toward massive lawbreaking by Arabs, particularly regarding
construction and squatting on public lands.

Niceness means never prosecuting Arab political leaders for treason and
espionage or for endorsing terror, no matter how openly they do so. It
means exempting Israeli Arabs from military conscription and even from
civilian national service. It has even meant that families of Arabs killed
while perpetrating terror atrocities against Jews were allowed to draw
"survivor benefits" from Israel's social security system (the National
Insurance Institute).

Outside the Green Line, niceness often consists of endless offers of
cease-fires with the terrorists - cease-fires that consist of Palestinians
shooting and Israelis not shooting back. It means delivering funds and
sometimes weapons to the very groups engaged in terrorism, in an attempt
to maintain the fa.ade of an ongoing peace process.

None of these measures can assuage Arab bellicosity toward Israel and
Jews; actually, each contributes toward its escalation. Should Israel ever
nicely withdraw to its pre-1967 borders, the Arab world led by "Palestine"
will launch a war against the remaining territory of the Jewish state. It
is likely to do so in the name of the "oppressed" Arabs in the Negev and
the Galilee supposedly suffering from "discrimination" in the Israeli
"apartheid regime."

III. The Arab-Israeli war is not about land, and it cannot be resolved by
Israel's relinquishing land.

The Arab world already controls territory nearly twice that of the United
States (including Alaska), whereas all of Israel cannot be seen on most
world maps. When Israel was occupying nothing outside of its pre-1967
borders, the Arab world refused to come to terms with its existence and is
no more willing to do so today, even if Israel were to return to those
same borders.

The Arab-Israeli conflict is not about Israel refusing to share land and
resources with Palestinians but about the absolute refusal of the Arab
world to acquiesce in the existence of any Jewish-majority political
entity within any set of borders in the Middle East.

This misrepresentation of the conflict serves to prolong it, precisely
because it misleads. The Arab world insists that Israel trade land for
peace not because it is prepared to in turn offer Israel peace for the
land it vacates, but because a smaller Israel will be that much easier to
destroy. And even if Israel consisted of nothing more than downtown Tel
Aviv, the Arab world would consider it to be an imperialist affront
sitting on stolen Arab land - an illegal "settlement."

IV. Education and economic progress do not produce political moderation or
a desire for peace in the Arab world.

To the contrary, there is reason to believe that wealth and education are
negatively correlated with moderation, meaning that wealthier and
better-educated Arabs are more likely to support terrorism and extremist
political ideas. Arab students in European and American universities have
been regular recruits for terrorist groups, and most of the al Qaeda
terrorists who carried out the 9/11 atrocities had been students.

Suicide bombers in Israel often are university students or graduates of
Palestinian universities. Some have been highly educated professionals,
such as the lawyer who blew herself up in the Maxim restaurant in Haifa,
killing 21 people on the spot. Public opinion polls among Arabs often show
greater support for violence among the better educated.

More generally, in the Middle East poverty and political oppression do not
produce terrorism. Anti-Israel terrorism was sparked by the imposition of
an enlightened regime on Palestinians by Israel - a regime in which basic
freedoms, including freedom of speech and the right to vote in local
elections, were enjoyed.

Terrorism escalated with each concession by Israel, especially after it
agreed to allow Palestinians political autonomy and then statehood. It
escalated after Israel removed its administrative control of the Arab
population in most of the "Palestinian territories."

V. "Talks" cannot produce peace in the Middle East and in fact have
harmful effects.

There is a Western obsession with the idea that all world problems can be
resolved through talking. But how many international conflicts can be said
to have been resolved strictly through talking? Especially in the Middle
East, there can be no doubt that talking does not resolve hostilities. It
makes them worse.

The Arab-Israeli war is not a marital spat where bringing together the
parties to sit around a table and socialize reduces anger,
misunderstanding and tension. The conflict is not about hurt feelings but
about the refusal of the Arab world to come to terms with Israel's
existence, period, in any set of borders and regardless of whether
Jerusalem remains under Israeli control.

VI. There is no "two-state solution" or "one-state solution" to the Arab
Israeli conflict.

The latter solution is particularly popular on the left. Under that
scenario, Israel is enfolded into a larger "secular democratic Arab state"
with an Arab Muslim majority. It is in fact little more than a
prescription for a Rwanda-style genocide of Jews. This is little doubt
that a significant number of those proposing such a solution would really
like to see this happen.

More important, there is no "two-state solution" to the Middle East
conflict. Those speaking about a two-state solution really mean a 24-state
solution, meaning the Arabs retain the 22 states they already have, adding
a 23rd state of "Palestine" in parts of the West Bank and Gaza and
pre-1967 Israeli territories, with Israel remaining the Jewish state - the
24th state in the plan - for the moment.

That such a solution will not end the conflict but only signal the
commencement of its next stage has long been the quasi-official position
of virtually all Palestinian groups, which have long insisted that any
two-state solution is but a stage in a plan of stages, after which will
come additional steps ultimately ending Israel's existence as a Jewish

The original partition plan of the United Nations had proposed that an
Arab Palestinian state arise alongside Israel in 1948. The Arab world
rejected this plan altogether. It had no interest in adding one more Arab
Islamic state to its portfolio. It went to war to prevent the creation of
any Jewish state.

The two-state solution is no more realistic an option today than it was in
1948. It is ultimately as much of an existential threat to Jewish survival
in the Middle East as the one-state solution. Creation of a Palestinian
state alongside Israel would be a major step in the escalation of the Arab
war against Israel's existence, even if that war is delayed for a time
while the world celebrates the outbreak of peace in the Middle East thanks
to the end of Israeli "occupation."

VII. Israeli Arabs form a potential fifth column, displaying massive
animosity and disloyalty to the state in which they have lived for 60
years and openly identifying with the enemies of that state.

Sixty years of living under the only democratic government in the Middle
East has had surprisingly little impact on the feelings and loyalties of
Israeli Arabs, who are by and large hostile to the very existence of the
state. They are no more resigned to living as a minority within a
majority-Jewish state today than they were in 1948.

Their animosity toward Israel is apparent in their voting behavior: the
bulk of Israeli Arabs vote for pro-terror Arab nationalist parties with
strong fascist tendencies or for the Stalinist HADASH party.

When the opportunity presents itself - for example, during the riots in
the fall of 2000 or earlier this year on Yom Kippur in Acre - Israeli Arab
enmity toward Jews is candidly manifested, and not just in words.

Education and prosperity offer little hope of changing this reality. One
proof is the behavior of Arab college students in Israel. Despite being
beneficiaries of affirmative action preferences in college admissions and
access to scarce dormitory space, Arab students are almost uniformly
anti-Israel and pro-jihad.

Israeli Arabs have long played a Sudeten-like role in the conflict. In any
new outbreak of hostilities with neighboring Arab countries, there is a
clear and present danger that they will take to the streets in attempts to
cripple the country from within. The Arab lynch mobs of the Galilee that
operated in October 2000 may have been a small foretaste.

For too long the world, led by Israel's own deluded leaders, has been
attempting to create peace via the pretense that war is over,
misrepresenting the fa.ade of negotiations as actual resolution of

It has been a sham, of course, and any short-lived lulls in the fighting
have served only to weaken the resolve of Israelis, whose leaders have
repeatedly presented them with a Potemkin peace based on the substitution
of wish-making for statecraft.

Dersh on Gaza, and Olmert's new assault on freedom of speech


Israel, Hamas, and moral idiocy
Much of the world's response is a false moral equivalence that simply
encourages the terrorists.
By Alan M. Dershowitz
from the December 31, 2008 edition
Cambridge, Mass. - Israel's decision to take military action against Hamas
rocket attacks targeting its civilian population has been long in coming.
I vividly recall a visit my wife and I took to the Israeli city of Sderot
on March 20 of this year. Over the past four years, Palestinian terrorists
. in particular, Hamas and Islamic Jihad . have fired more than 2,000
rockets at this civilian area, which is home to mostly poor and
working-class people.
The rockets are designed exclusively to maximize civilian deaths, and some
have barely missed schoolyards, kindergartens, hospitals, and school
buses. But others hit their targets, killing more than a dozen civilians
since 2001, including in February 2008 a father of four who had been
studying at the local university. These anticivilian rockets have also
injured and traumatized countless children.
The residents of Sderot were demanding that their nation take action to
protect them. But Israel's postoccupation military options were limited,
since Hamas deliberately fires its deadly rockets from densely populated
urban areas, and the Israeli army has a strict policy of trying to avoid
civilian casualties.
The firing of rockets at civilians from densely populated civilian areas
is the newest tactic in the war between terrorists who love death and
democracies that love life. The terrorists have learned how to exploit the
morality of democracies against those who do not want to kill civilians,
even enemy civilians.
The attacks on Israeli citizens have little to do with what Israel does or
does not do. They have everything to do with an ideology that despises .
and openly seeks to destroy . the Jewish state. Consider that rocket
attacks increased substantially after Israel disengaged from Gaza in 2005,
and they accelerated further after Hamas seized control last year.
In the past months, a shaky cease-fire, organized by Egypt, was in effect.
Hamas agreed to stop the rockets and Israel agreed to stop taking military
action against Hamas terrorists in the Gaza Strip. The cease-fire itself
was morally dubious and legally asymmetrical.
Israel, in effect, was saying to Hamas: If you stop engaging in the war
crime of targeting our innocent civilians, we will stop engaging in the
entirely lawful military acts of targeting your terrorists. Under the
cease-fire, Israel reserved the right to engage in self-defense actions
such as attacking terrorists who were in the course of firing rockets at
its civilians.
Just before the hostilities began, Israel reopened a checkpoint to allow
humanitarian aid to reenter Gaza. It had closed the point of entry after
it had been targeted by Gazan rockets. Israel's prime minister, Ehud
Olmert, also issued a stern, final warning to Hamas that unless it stopped
the rockets, there would be a full-scale military response. The Hamas
rockets continued and Israel kept its word, implementing a carefully
prepared targeted air attack against Hamas targets.
On Sunday, I spoke to the air force general, now retired, who worked on
the planning of the attack. He told me of the intelligence and planning
that had gone into preparing for the contingency that the military option
might become necessary. The Israeli air force had pinpointed with
precision the exact locations of Hamas structures in an effort to minimize
civilian casualties.
Even Hamas sources have acknowledged that the vast majority of those
killed have been Hamas terrorists, though some civilian casualties are
inevitable when, as BBC's Rushdi Abou Alouf . who is certainly not
pro-Israel . reported, "The Hamas security compounds are in the middle of
the city." Indeed, his home balcony was just 20 meters away from a
compound he saw bombed.
There have been three types of international response to the Israeli
military actions against the Hamas rockets. Not surprisingly, Iran, Hamas,
and other knee-jerk Israeli-bashers have argued that the Hamas rocket
attacks against Israeli civilians are entirely legitimate and that the
Israeli counterattacks are war crimes.
Equally unsurprising is the response of the United Nations, the European
Union, Russia, and others who, at least when it comes to Israel, see a
moral and legal equivalence between terrorists who target civilians and a
democracy that responds by targeting the terrorists.
And finally, there is the United States and a few other nations that place
the blame squarely on Hamas for its unlawful and immoral policy of using
its own civilians as human shields, behind whom they fire rockets at
Israeli civilians.
The most dangerous of the three responses is not the Iranian-Hamas
absurdity, which is largely ignored by thinking and moral people, but the
United Nations and European Union response, which equates the willful
murder of civilians with legitimate self-defense pursuant to Article 51 of
the United Nations Charter.
This false moral equivalence only encourages terrorists to persist in
their unlawful actions against civilians. The US has it exactly right by
placing the blame on Hamas, while urging Israel to do everything possible
to minimize civilian casualties.
. Alan M. Dershowitz is the Felix Frankfurter professor of law at Harvard
Law School. His latest book is "The Case Against Israel's Enemies:
Exposing Jimmy Carter and Others Who Stand in the Way of Peace."

2. The most anti-Semitic journalist in Israel, Gideon Levy of Haaretz,
served as spokesman for Shimon Peres between 1978 and 1982. Here is a
typical Levy anti-Semitic diatribe:

3. Rahat is a town of Arab Bedouins in the Negev and has long been one
of the most openly anti-Israel pro-terror towns in Israel. It regularly
holds violent anti-Israel demonstrations. It was hit by Hamas rockets
this week.

4. There is a lot of cynical talk these days about any possibly role of
the upcoming Israeli elections in the behavior and positions of various
public figures with regard to the operations against the Hamas. There is
ONE development that CLEARLY is nothing more than a cynical play for
electoral support: Uncharacteristically, Meretz, the leftist semi-Marxist
party, has endorsed the attack on Gaza, as have a few other leftist
groups. Shimon Peres has also endorsed it. The exceptions to the more
general rule of treason on the Left. Oh, the Meretz branch in the US is
NOT an exception. They are out shilling for the Hamas this week:

5. Rabin and the good ole days:

6. Nice piece:,7340,L-3647296,00.html

7. The Olmertocracy is exploiting the war to launch a new assault on
freedom of speech in Israel: Some rabbis dared to
call for affirmative action in favor of Jews. The Israeli political
establishment which operates affirmative action on behalf of Arabs sees
this as racist.

8. Hornik on the war:

9. The Inside Gaza Story:

10. What "Palestine"?

11. Spain's Joo Problem:

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The Ethical Commentary of the Father of a Murdered Jerusalem Child

1. Of all the commentary the past few days, I found the following one of
the most touching (in Hebrew only, my translation of parts of it follows):,7340,L-3646994,00.html
It is written by David Moriah, himself a teacher, whose son was butchered
in the terrorist attack on the Jerusalem yeshiva last year. The column
is entitled: "Stop Talking about Peace and Start Talking about Justice."

He writes:

'After our son was murdered in the Merkaz HaRav yeshiva, the current
scenes in Gaza bypass my human intellect and instead find their way to the
basic primitive yearning for revenge...
'When our 16 year old son was murdered ten months ago together with seven
of his friends, the TV screens of the world were filled with scenes of the
yeshiva library filled with blood, together with scenes of the residents
of Gaza dancing in celebration and flashing "V" signs to one another for
victory, handing out candies and firing into the air in celebration.
'I do not deny that the current scenes in Gaza bypass my human intellect
and instead find their way to the basic primitive yearning for revenge.
But even more so they satisfy the fundamental yearning for justice. And
anyone living in this land knows that there will yet come more pictures of
innocent Jewish blood and more pictures of Gaza Arabs celebrating.
'Everyone knows that there lives amongst us a large community of citizens,
and it includes members of the Knesset. They - in spite of occasional
clickings of the tongue and even a condemnation here or there of the
atrocities - clearly desire more mass murders of civilians and bloodshed
to prove that there is no choice but to negotiate with the Hamas, not to
defeat it, and capitulate to its demands.
'The media commentators will go back to explaining to us that the strong
is the weak and that the weak is the strong and about how the victims and
casualties on our side make it necessary to negotiate with the Hamas.
Governments around the world pour out advice for us about how to calm
things down and negotiate, while everyone on earth knows that in our place
they would undertake the most destructive and violent retaliations without
a shed of moderation or mercy for any poor women and children.
'Yet everyone is speaking about peace and no one is speaking about
justice. It is time to stop the jabbering about peace and to address the
question of justice. I met a grandmother with healthy common sense who
used to say: "That which is evil is evil, and that which is good is good."
Firing dozens of bullets at children studying in a yeshiva library is
evil. Firing missiles for the purpose of killing civilians is evil.
Causing agony to the families of the kidnapped is evil. And dancing for
joy when innocent civilians are murdered by terrorists is evil. On the
other hand, taking measures to kill the murderer before he is able to kill
civilians again is good. To demolish the home of a terrorist in order to
deter is good. And expelling people who identify with the Gaza murderers
to go live in Gaza is VERY good.
'And good things need to be done immediately, with no delay or ponderings
and the darkness must be vanquished immediately...'

The "Itija'a" organization of Israeli Arabs, funded by the EU, has issued
a statement saying that the firing of rockets by the Hamas at Israeli
civilians is not a war crime, but the Israeli bombings in Gaza and
targeting of terrorists is. It also accused Israel of conducting genocide
in Gaza and that the rule of the Hamas in Gaza is "legitimate." The
organization has not been banned and its heads have not been jailed by

3. The horror. The horror.,7340,L-3647185,00.html

4. New Republic's Peretz does a good job:

5. Lerner and Waskow, the druggie Tikkunite pseudo-rabbis, have both
issued statements against Israel's operations in Gaza.

6. Good backgrounder:

For those with a delicious sense of irony:

1. For those with a Plautian sense of macabre irony:
Ben Gurion University Prepares for Possible Attack
( The Ben Gurion University of the Negev in Be'er Sheva has
gone into emergency preparedness in light of Israel's counterterror
operation in Gaza and the fact that the city is within range of rockets
launched by Gaza terrorists.
The university's planning, in conjunction with the Homefront Command,
covers protection from rockets in public places and university residences,
coordination of firefighting efforts and removal of fallout and dangerous

(Translation - the massive rocket attack directly produced in part by the
treasonous anti-Israel activities of so many faculty members at Ben Gurion
University, including at least one entire department, is now threatening
the campus itself!)

Groundhog Day for the Fifth Column of Malice
By Melanie Phillips |

Why Israel Struck
By Stephen Brown

4. The war of the NGOs on behalf of Hamas:

Cast out the Lead

1. There is so much to say about events over the past few days, but I
will try to keep mine very short. The web is full of relevant materials.

a. As usual, the press and the Israeli political establishment are
ignoring what actually produced the massive rocket attacks on the Israeli
south, namely the pusillanimous decision to expel the Jews from the Gaza
Strip and to turn the area over to the Hamas. The result of that
cowardice was entirely predictable and was predicted in these quarters.
The Israeli politicians at the time whined that there was no choice but to
act as they did, the same whine they chant every time they do something
catastrophically stupid entirely by choice. The only lesson learned by
the Olmert people is that the same arrangements that produced the hundreds
of rockets on the Israeli south this week must be repeated in the West

b. Air strikes are dramatic and produce a nice warm fuzzy feeling in
Israelis watching the film clips of buildings and bunkers exploding, and
this time were far better planned than in the 2006 war against the
Hezbollah. However, they cannot produce real change nor solve the
problem. This was proved in Lebanon in 2006.

c. There is only one solution that can work = R&D = Re-Occupation and
Denazification. Everything else is a delusion.

d. Those who think the Israeli government is serious about fighting
terror this time need to explain why Israel is still warning the Hamas
about which buildings will be bombed before they ARE bombed so that the
people there can be gotten out. Also needed is an explanation for why
Israel is still transferring supplies and funds to the Hamas in Gaza in
the middle of the battle, including of course sugar from which Qassam
rocket fuel is produced, and why Israel has not turned off the electricity
so that the press propagandists cannot serve Hamas.

e. It is of great value that the Hamas CONTINUE to fire rockets at
Israel. Otherwise, the Olmert government would call a halt to the Israeli
attack against the Hamas, and return to goodwill measures, "signaling,"
and new appeasements.

f. A law should be passed making it illegal for an Israeli politician
to use the word "signaling." Any such pol should have his mouth washed
out with turpentine.

g. It is clear to all that Israel should never have agreed to any
"ceasefire" with the Hamas, especially not to one that left Gilad Shalit
in Hamas captivity. There is a serious danger that Olmert and his people
will now agree to a new ceasefire in which Shalit remains captive.

h. While it has not yet happened, there is a non-trivial danger that
the Hezbollah will open up rocket fire at northern Israel any time now.
The same person who moved the Hezbollah up to the Israeli border with its
thousands of rockets, Ehud Barak, the man who essentially shot 4000
rockets at Northern Israel in 2006, is now pretending to be a tough
fighter leading the battle against the Hamas.

i. Anyone who thinks the Israeli Left is merely stupid and not
treasonous is being proven wrong every minute this week.

j. While we all know that the overseas Left is not just anti-Zionist
but also anti-Semitic, it is also increasingly Nazified, as it cheers on
the Hamas attacks on Jewish children and denounces Israel as a Nazi
country when it defends Jewish children. Not a single one of the
anti-Israel protesters on British and American campuses had been
protesting when the Hamas was "only" shooting rockets into Sderot every

k. The international Left would denounce a Jewish partisan in 1944
who shot an SS officer and would use it as proof that all of World War II
is about Jewish mistreatment of innocent Germans. Haaretz would agree.

l. Israeli Arabs are massively expressing their contempt for Israel's
existence and their open identification with and support for the Hamas,
cheering every rocket that lands on Sderot or Netivot. Every Israeli
university has seen pro-Hamas protests by Arab students carrying flags of
"Palestine," in some cases where Jewish leftist students and professors
join them. At the University of Haifa law school lecturer Ilan Saban was
one of several leftist faculty members who demonstrated with the pro-Hamas

m. Amos Oz and A.B. Yehoshua have articles in the Italian press today
protesting Israel's bombing Gaza. David Grossman has a long piece in
Haaretz today demanding an immediate end to Israel shooting back. None of
these writers ever found the time to publish articles anywhere calling on
the Hamas to stop firing hundreds of rockets at Jewish civilians.

n. For those who missed the humor, the name of the operation, "Cast
Lead" or in Hebrew Oferet Yitzuka, comes from a children's Hannuka song
about Daddy bring home a little Hannuka menorah made of cast lead. It is
a song well know to all Israelis, even the most secular, and its choice
symbolizes the unification of Israel behind the savages.

o. I have been convinced so often and so incorrectly over the years
that the Israeli Left and the Israeli academic world will be jolted into
rationality by events. One of the most convincing times was when my own
university was being targeted by Hezbollah rockets in 2006. Sure THIS
will wake up the moonbats, I believed. I was wrong every single time.
Every single time the Left lay low for a few days and then emerged all the
more convinced that appeasement and capitulation must be the only Israeli
policy. There is no doubt that this time things will be the same.
Haaretz is already cover-to-cover denunciation of Israel's operations and
calls for immediate ceasefire and "negotiations" with the Hamas. Any day
now hundreds of Israeli academics will be calling for Israel to meet the
Hamas' demands.

Ben Gurion University's Neve Gordon (political science department
chairman) has uncovered the reason for Israel's "aggression" and "war

'The assault on Gaza is also being carried out to help Kadima and Labour
defeat Likud and its leader Binyamin Netanyahu, who is currently ahead in
the polls....Yet, the government is actively misleading the public, since
Israel could have put an end to the rockets a long time ago. Indeed, there
was relative quiet during the six-months truce with Hamas, a quiet that
was broken most often as a reaction to Israeli violence: that is,
following the extra-judicial execution of a militant or the imposition of
a total blockade which prevented basic goods, like food stuff and
medicine, from entering the Gaza Strip. Rather than continuing the truce,
the Israeli government has once again chosen to adopt strategies of
violence that are tragically akin to the ones deployed by Hamas; only, the
Israeli ones are much more lethal. If the Israeli government really cared
about its citizens and the country's long term ability to sustain itself
in the Middle East, it would abandon the use of violence and talk with its

Full article:
Neve Gordon
Monday December 29 2008

3. Some quotes: * "If somebody was sending rockets into my house where
my two daughters sleep at night, I would do everything to stop that, and
would expect Israel to do the same thing"
-- Barack Obama, in July, while visiting Israel as a U.S. presidential

* British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, on December 27: "I call on Gazan
militants to cease all rocket attacks on Israel immediately. These attacks
are designed to cause random destruction and to undermine the prospects of
peace talks led by President Abbas. I understand the Israeli government's
sense of obligation to its population"

4. Auld Lang Zion 2009
Should auld accomplice be forgot,
And never brought to trial?
Should auld Osloids, friend, be forgot,
In days of auld lang Zion?
For betraying auld lang Zion, my dear,
For debasing auld lang Zion.
Should their accomplice be forgot,
In days of auld lang Zion?
We yids hae run aboot the world,
Under fire the whole time.
We've wandered mony a weary foot,
To reach auld lang Zion.
Save auld land Zion, my dear,
Save auld land Zion,
Indict those Oslo blaggards, dear,
For the sake of auld lang Zion!!!

5. Man the Torpedoes!

6. Keep it up:

7. Treason Chic in the middle of war:,7340,L-3645241,00.html

Today Ahmed Saadat, leader of the Popular Front for the Liberation of
Palestine (PFLP) , tomorrow the political science department at Ben Gurion


A Palestinian girl whose family members were killed yesterday in Gaza:

"I say Hamas is the cause of all wars."
by Itamar Marcus and Barbara Crook

A Palestinian girl whose family members was killed yesterday in Gaza after
an Israeli air attack was interviewed today on Palestinian TV and placed
the blame for the war on Hamas:
[Girl] "We were sleeping 7 girls in the room. We were asleep and
didn't know what was happening. In the morning all the bricks were on top
of my head, and the heads of all my sisters. My 4 year old sister next to
me was dead."
[Interviewer] "How many were you?"

[Girl] "Seven.In the other room were my mother, my father, my yonger
brother and another sister, who is 13 days old. I say, Hamas is the cause,
in the first place, of all wars."
[Al-Aqsa TV (Hamas) Dec. 29, 2008]

29 Dec 2008
National Post
Hamas's suicide mission

10. Important new items from

Yehiam Sorek, who teaches history at Beit Berl College, finds a murdering
war criminal and enemy of mankind - Bar Kochva!

Tel Aviv University - Shlomo Sand's Revisionist Pseudo-History of the
Jewish People

More anti-Semitism and Neo-Nazism on the "ALEF LIST," which operates under
the auspices of the university of Haifa. To complain, go to

Anti-IDF Protests in Cities, Universities
Tevet 2, 5769, 29 December 08 05:56
by by Maayana Miskin
( Violent protests against IDF operations in Gaza continued
in Jerusalem, Haifa and elsewhere in Israel on Monday. University students
joined the fray with protests and counter-protests in Haifa, Tel Aviv and
Jerusalem: Rocks, Arson, Graves Vandalized
In Jerusalem, riots continued for the third day in a row in Arab
neighborhoods of the city. Twenty policemen were lightly wounded in
confrontations with rioters armed with stones. Approximately 60 rioters
were arrested.
In the Jerusalem neighborhood of Nebi Samuel, Arab residents protested the
.Cast Lead. operation in Gaza with arson attacks. Arsonists set fire to a
local forest at three different points. Firefighters succeeded in
extinguishing the blaze. Two suspected arsonists were later arrested.
Riots were reported in Shuafat, Har Adar and the Old City in Jerusalem as
well, and in the village of Kalandia north of the capital, and Rachel's
Tomb (Kever Rachel) south of the city, in Bethlehem. On the Mount of
Olives (Har Zeitim), overlooking the Old City, Arab rioters smashed
headstones on Jewish graves in the local cemetery.
Haifa U.: 'Barak Murders' vs. 'Death to Terrorists'
At Haifa University, hundreds of Arabs and a handful of extreme-left
Jewish students and professors faced off against supporters of the .Cast
Lead. operation on campus. Arab students held signs saying .Barak murders.
and .State terror,. while those supporting the IDF called out .Death to
terrorists. and called for Hamas head Ismail Haniyeh to be killed.
Police kept the sides apart, but minor disturbances were reported as
protesters broke free to argue and occasionally throw objects at each
other. Some students serving in the IDF reserves argued with their leftist
professors, who were protesting against the Gaza operation.
Senior university administrators said both the pro- and anti-IDF
demonstrations had been approved. S tudents must be allowed to exercise
their freedom of speech, they said.
The Haifa student union published a statement in support of the IDF and
the .Cast Lead. operation.
Hebrew U.: 'With Blood and Fire We Will Liberate You, Palestine'
Next to the Hebrew University campus on Mount Scopus, Jerusalem, hundreds
of Arab students held Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) flags and
yelled, .Gaza, Gaza, do not despair,. .Allah is great,. and .With blood
and fire we will liberate you, Palestine..
Jewish students from the Zionist .Im Tirtzu. (If You Will It) student
group held a counter protest. The students held Israeli flags, sang the
national anthem HaTikva, and shouted .We love the IDF. and .See you in the
Tel Aviv: Three Arrested
Protests and counter-protests took place near the Tel Aviv University
campus in Ramat Aviv. A scuffle broke out between protesters, and three
were arrested.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Maariv Editor Denounces Hebrew University Professor as Anti-Semite and Traitor

1. While almost all Israeli journalists coddle the leftist
anti-Zionist academics at Israeli universities and pander to their
treason, praising them as courageous moral role models, Ben Dror Yemini,
the deputy editor of Maariv, is a notable and heroic exception. While a
bit left of center in his own personal outlook, he nevertheless is willing
to call a leftist spade a spade and often is willing to call a leftist
spade a traitor. He has frequently attacked leftist seditious Israeli
Jewish professors by name.

In his weekend column yesterday, he outdoes even himself. He takes on
Prof. Nurit Elhanan-Peled, the very same moonbette whom we cited and
commented about in a posting a few days ago. To remind you, Elhanan-Peled
is a professor of education at the Hebrew University. She is sister to
Marxist professor of history Yoav Peled at Tel Aviv University and her own
daughter was murdered by a Palestinian suicide bomber in Jerusalem. In
response to that murder, Elhanan-Peled has since devoted herself to
promoting the agenda and cause of the very same terrorists who murdered
her own daughter. Her latest outburst of cheering on behalf of the Hamas
was posted by us a few days back and can be read at this URL:

Yemini viciously attacks Elhanan-Peled in his column on Dec 26. It can
be read in Hebrew here:
Significantly, Yemini explicitly calls her an anti-Semite and a traitor in
his column. I translate the relevant parts for you (my own translation)

'The Hamas will also Take Care of the Lecturer

'There is in fact no reason to wait for any imminent military action. The
Lie Factory is already hard at work at full steam. This week a new record
was broken. A lecturer at the Hebrew University wrote an article, "The
Heroes of the Gaza Strip," about those Gazans who express the "free spirit
of humanity" in opposition to the "military plan about to commence by the
criminals of the occupation army." The writer uses the word "thugs," that
favorite term for Jews used by anti-Semites, to describe the Jewish
bullies who are in secret control of the world. The use of the term is
not and innocent. It erases the distinction between anti-Zionists
and anti-Semites. The propaganda of "atrocities" has already arrived. No
need to await a large action.

'The writer is Dr. Nurit Peled-Elhanan, the granddaughter of the late
reserve general Matityahu Peled (a notable Israeli communist ironically
named Matityahu --- SP). She is a begrieved mother, whose own daughter
was killed in a terrorist attack in Jerusalem. She of course blames
Israel for that, not the murderers. She goes out of her way to JUSTIFY
the murderers! And if we yearn to understand why the freedom of spirit is
being defeated and why the Islamist anti-Semitism is winning, it behooves
us to continue to read her malicious propaganda in this regard.

'Israel, according to the writer Peled-Elhanan, "is sunk up to its neck in
the blood of innocent (Palestinian) babies and every breath that we take
shoots out red bubbles of blood into the air of the holy land."
Peled-Elhanan then makes a blood-chilling misuse of the famous poem by
Bialik about the Kishinev pogrom, "On the Massacre," which includes the
famous line, "The revenge for the death a small child has not yet been
invented by the Devil." That poem was written about the Kishinev pogrom.
But she declares that "the child in question is the Palestinian from Gaza,
and his butchers are the Jewish soldiers." Here we have yet another
medieval blood libel. Again the Jews are murdering children.

'She writes about "cities of massacre," about a massacre supposedly being
perpetrated against Palestinians. Except that she knows perfectly well
that Israel has never carried out any massacre, ever, and not even
something resembling a massacre, during the entire 40 years of occupation
of the occupied territories. In reality, the number of Palestinians
injured has been extremely low, both relatively and in absolute numbers,
in comparison with any other conflict anywhere on the planet. But since
when do anti-Semites care about facts.

'She refers to the Hamas murderers as "freedom fighters." No doubt she
also considers the Nazis to have been also when they were struggling
against the Jews. After all, years and years of demonization of Jews, of
painting the Jews as the "threat to world tranquility," preceded
annihilation of the Jews back then also. Peled-Elhanan continues their
work. She is now perpetrating the demonization of Jews. At one time
someone like Peled-Elhanan would have been tossed into prison as a
traitor. The world has changed. Peled-Elhanan is the recipient of the
"Sakharov Prize" granted to her by the European parliament.

'So what does one do with sicknesses like this? Silencing them would be
prohibited, would turn them into martyrs. You know . the victims of the
Israeli stormtroopers. What needs to be done is to do to them what they
are trying to do to Israel . to turn them into lepers. To expose the
anti-Semitic essence in them. And the fact that they are barons in the
factory of lies. That they are the defense advocates of the anti-Semitic
regime at our gates. Peled-Elhanan is operating among us and at times at
our expense. She and her ilk are in service to the murderous Hamas
regime. She and her ilk are perpetuating bloodshed. And in spite of
that, we are commanded not to prosecute the anti-Semites in our midst. (I
disagree --- SP)

'If her plot succeeds, the Hamas will be victorious and rule over us here
and IT will then do the dirty job! Both to us and to her!'

Up to this point were the words of Ben Dror Yemini. (In the remainder of
his column he attacks Israeli leftists who protested when Israel barred
the anti-Semitic Professor Richard Falk from entering Israel as a UN
delegate after he had smeared Israel as a Nazi entity.)

Please take a few moments and send a letter of outrage to the heads of the
Hebrew University and to all Hebrew University "friends of" offices around
the world. Let them know what you think of people like Elhanan-Peled
being emplyed using the funds of Israeli taxpayers, alumni, and overseas
donors. Please cite Yemini and demand that the Hebrew University take
action against the pro-terror anti-Semites on its faculty (of whom
Elhanan-Peled is not the only one!). To do so, contact:

President of the Hebrew University
Prof. Menachem Magidor
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Mt. Scopus, Jerusalem 91905
Tel. 02-6584143, 02-5881905
Fax. 02-5811023
President of the Hebrew University
Prof. Menachem Magidor
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Mt. Scopus, Jerusalem 91905
Tel. 02-6584143, 02-5881905
Fax. 02-5811023

The Rector of the Hebrew University is
Title : Prof.
First Name: Sarah
Family name: Stroumsa
Department: Rector of the Hebrew University
Primary Email address:
Other Email addresses:

Telephone: 026719698
Telephone (extra): 025883676
List of Hebrew University "Friends of" Offices with email addresses and

Finally, please note that is the Israeli watchdog group
that monitors and exposes academic treason in Israel, following the
shenanigans of Israel's academic Fifth Column, and exposing campus
politicization and extremism in Israel. It needs your help, support, and

Please visit the web site weekly to learn what is happening on Israeli
campuses! Please advise others to provide assistance and support to it.

2. The wonderful Nidra Poller on the Hamas Hannuka:
Just posted on
Nidra Poller in Paris on the Israel counter attack to defend itself
against Islamic jihad.
HAZAK ! Hamastan is getting the Hanuka treatment, special delivery for
evildoers. It seems the mighty jihadis were caught by surprise. Not me.
Listening between the words of leftist Israeli journalists interviewed on
our Jewish radio stations this week, I was sure the attack was imminent.
It.s one of those times when Israel speaks with one voice and acts with
one determination. Even the wimpy Olmert government could not dawdle any
longer. Only two days ago the Hamasniks were gloating over Israeli
indecision. These jihadis operate in closed circuit minds. Once they
convince themselves they are winning, they whip up a whirlwind of
delusion. Now look at them, battered and bloodied, stunned and dazed,
caught in full dress uniform, whining and calling for help.
As Israel stands tall and proud, exercising its sovereignty, European Jews
threaten to bomb the carpets in Strasbourg and mow down the sprouts in
Brussels if E.U. officials don.t stop spouting off their mouths. Not
really. But it.s no more of a joke than the Automated Out of Office
Replies registered early this afternoon in the French media. The French
presidency of the E.U. is calling for an immediate ceasefire and,
incidentally, requesting that Hamas refrain from shooting rockets into
Israel. The French presidency of France, no surprise, is making the same
inane statement. And so it goes down the line, flutters of indignation
from automatic official responders while the real leaders are out to
breakfast lunch and dinner in the empty year-end week. Never at a loss for
a lie, French media have thrown the U.S. in with the hypocrites under a
one size fits all headline claiming that the international community is
calling for a ceasefire. In fact, the U.S. position is radically
different. Wishing that Israelis will do their best to avoid civilian
casualties, our government more or less told Hamas it got what it was
asking for.
This is now. What will happen when the 90lb weakling usurps his seat in
the White House? Will we hear European squeak from the next to the last
bastion of courage? A few days ago le Figaro descended to new depths with
an article about Obama in swim trunks, exclaiming: .What a gorgeous hunk
of man!. The only moment of truth in this endless flow of Obamaniac drivel
was an article a few weeks ago about how Michelle will certainly be using
fashion advisers to get her act together. Though that journalist, too,
imagined gorgeous legs and a perfect figure, she did say that the future
first lady.s red and black election night dress was not exactly a winner.
Back to Hamastan. A Metulla News Agency ( for those who
read French) release reports that 50 targets were hit simultaneously in
the first wave of bombing, scoring 97% of direct hits in the space of 3
minutes. 50 additional targets were hit in the second wave. Most of the
command posts, military bases, arms factories, and arsenals were damaged
or destroyed. Tunnel personnel came scurrying out of their underground
enterprises near the Egyptian border as the bombings shook the earth.
Noting that Hamas spokesman Fawzi Baroum gave shooting orders.over the
radio-- to rocket launchers near the Israeli border, the Metulla reporter
supposes that the military communications network was destroyed. An
airstrike against a building where Hamas military and political personnel
had just gathered for an emergency meeting indicates, according to the
same source, information gathered from human intelligence on the ground.
The Metulla News Agency release concludes that Hamas, caught by surprise
by .the timing, the scope, and the precision of the attack,. is
desperately searching for some civilian victims to display as proof of an
Israeli massacre.
By 5.30 PM, Le Figaro had lined up an impressive list of condemnations.
The U.E., Javier Solana, President Sarkozy, PM Fran.ois Fillon, Ban
Ki-Moon, Leila Chahid, Turkey, Mahmoud Abbas, Abdallah of Saudi Arabia,
Moubarak, the Arab League, Iran, Ghadaffi, Syria. Le Figaro tucked the
U.S. and the U.K. into the list, trying to assimilate them with these
accusations of everything from carelessness to war crimes. They must have
missed this exchange with Egyptian MFA Ahmed Aboul Gheit, at a Cairo press
conference. Asked if he.d known the attack was imminent, About Gheit
replied, .Didn.t you? Didn.t you hear the declaration of Tzipi Livin last
Thursday?. He said Hamas had been warned, and shouldn.t be surprised at
getting what they asked for.
And somehow this strong condemnation of .Israeli.s massacre against Gaza
Strip reported by the Kuwait news agency didn.t make it onto the honor
. Why? Isn.t Sudan part of the elevated conscience of international
Night has fallen here in Paris. Time to light the Hanukah candles. They
will burn so brightly as the evildoers writhe in pain and cry over their
broken lethal toys. A few days ago they reinstated crucifixion in the
sharia arsenal of their rump Islamic republic. Today our haverim burned
their punishing crosses!

3. Well, Israel's loyal Arabs have taken to the roads in a fit of
violence, throwing rocks and Molotov cocktails at passing Jews. Since the
Israeli politicians seem at a loss about how to handle these pogromchiks
in the middle of the battle in Gaza, I have written Olmert and Livni with
my own proposal. I can't go into details about what the proposal
contains, but I can tell you that its title is, "Throw a Rock at a Jew and
Die," and it has a companion document whose title reads, "If you are old
enough to throw a rock you are old enough to be shot."

4. The latest from Beilingrad:

Some Statements about Peace


We Israeli professors and lecturers whose salaries are paid for by
taxpayers and Jewish donors would like to express our solidarity with the
Hamas activists firing rockets and missiles at the schoolchildren, women
and other living things in Sderot, Netivot, Ashkelon, Kiryat Gat, Ofakim
and in the other illegal Israeli settlements in the occupied Negev.

We insist that the only basis for peace must be that the Hamas and its
associates be permitted to fire as many rockets and missiles as they wish
while the Jews must be prohibited from shooting back. For this reason, we
will be taking to the streets and campuses this week to express our
support for the Hamas. We will be celebrating the boats attempting to
break the Israeli siege of the Gaza Strip. We insist that Israel open
the border checkpoints and allow sugar to be shipped into Gaza to be made
into Qassam fuel. We insist that the electricity be left on in Gaza so
that the Hamas rocket firing crews need not use flashlights.

We insist that the only legitimate way for Israel to seek the release
of Gilad Shavit is to grant the demands of the Hamas, to end all Israeli
security checkpoints everywhere, and to allow Hamas activists free access
to Israeli school buses, cafes, and restaurants.

While it is true that every other group of people on earth is
entitled to exercise self-defense, we believe that Jews are exceptions to
this because Jews are morally, culturally and racially inferior to other

Since when should Untermenschen be permitted to shoot back! Anyone
with grievances about anything anywhere on earth should be allowed to
murder Jewish civilians as much as they wish. After all, Jews everywhere
are morally response for the unforgivable crime of the state of Israel in
its existing! So murders of Jews are simply collateral damage caused by
Israel's criminal decision to continue to exist.

The best way Israel can achieve peace is to announce an immediate
unilateral decision to stop all acts of shooting back, no matter how many
Israeli civilians are killed by Palestinian resistance. This should be
followed up immediately by decisions to withdraw all Jewish settlers from
Beer Sheba, Ashkelon and Ashdod, and these areas should be restored to
their legal Palestinian owners. Only Ben Gurion University should be
allowed to remain since, after all, it is already a Palestinian school.

We insist that Israel never use force whenever there is any
chance that any Arab civilians might get injured. But since there is
always such a risk, in essence we demand that Israel never use force at
all and never defend Jewish civilians. Defending Jews is nothing more
than a stage of escalation in the cycle of violence. Defending Jews is
criminal behavior and Israel must put a stop to it once and for all!

The only way to end it is by Jews learning to turn the other cheek
and by Jews turning their swords into plowshares. All we are saying is
give peace a chance.



By: Steven Plaut
Archeologists in Poland have just discovered an amazing document,
uncovered from beneath rubble left over in what was once the Warsaw
A Letter and Call to Sanity for the Warsaw Ghetto zealots, from the Peace
Now chapter of Warsaw, April 23, 1943.
Dear Deluded Brethren,
A few days ago some zealots from certain messianic settler organizations
operating in Warsaw launched a series of acts of unprovoked violence
against the legitimate German peace partners directing peace-seeking
activities here in Warsaw. A number of German soldiers and officers have
been viciously murdered, while others have been maimed and injured by
these thoughtless religious fundamentalists.
Comrades, we must emphasize that these violent hoodlums are deluded and
are making things much worse for everyone else here in the Warsaw Ghetto.
You have to understand that there are no military solutions to the
problems of deportations of Jews in Warsaw by the Germans. Our problems
can only be resolved through negotiations.
We lovers of peace insist that, in spite of the claims of these messianic
terrorists provoking the Germans, there IS a partner for negotiations
among the Germans, and we Warsaw Jews DO have a moral responsibility to
conduct good faith negotiations with the legitimate representatives of the
German people.
In addition, violent attacks by irresponsible Jewish settlers in the
ghetto against Germans will only provoke a cycle of violence. There can be
no winners in that.
Don't these people conducting the hooligan violence understand that, if
they attack the Nazi troops and refuse to conduct negotiations with the
agents sent to us by the Third Reich, Hitler will lose control of his
forces and then some really violent anti-Semite could take over?
Besides, Hitler is really trying his best to rein in the more violent of
his stormtroopers; he simply cannot be everywhere at once. And besides,
the Red Army and the Eastern front have him so preoccupied that he cannot
act more effectively against the renegade SS terrorists mistreating Jews.
In addition, the Germans do have some legitimacy to their negotiating
position. After all, Jews in Poland have been illegally occupying numerous
Polish territories that really belong to Aryans! The Jews have established
themselves in numerous Polish settlements where they just do not belong
and their presence there has antagonized some of the local oppressed
Horrendous inequality has been created by Jewish racism, since the Jews in
Poland are better educated than the Gentiles here and Jews in Warsaw
earned more than non-Jews before the war. This manifestation of
anti-Gentilism must be redressed. We need some affirmative action to help
the Polish non-Jews advance in society.
Moreover, some Polish civilians apparently were victims of Jewish
pickpockets in Warsaw before the war. We Jews certainly need to pay
compensation for those inexcusable provocations.
Clearly the solution is two ghettos for two peoples. The Warsaw ghetto
needs to be shared. The Jews in one half must agree to be deported
peacefully from that half to other destinations, so that the Germans and
the Poles can have equal rights in the New Middle Europe. The Polish right
of return to the ghetto needs to be addressed. The entire tragedy that we
have experienced stems from the selfish inability of so many Jews to share
their property and land.
We repeat, violence has never solved anything. Violence only foments more
violence. The violent Warsaw settlers attacking the innocent Germans are
bigots and racists. They have wounded innocent bystanders in their
firefights. Not only that, but the ghetto zealots attacking Germans have
demonstrated insufficient sensitivity to the needs of non-traditional
families and gay couples. They have been insensitive to the impact of
their behavior upon the environment and the threat of global warming.
We need to speak out in defense of the human rights of Germans and Poles
in the vicinity of the ghetto. We must denounce the racist Zionist
hooligans and messianic zealots attacking those victims. Jewish terrorism
against Germans must be stopped. The entire crisis could be resolved if we
Jews would only recognize the legitimate rights to self-determination of
the Germans, especially the ones in Danzig.
We must begin negotiations at once. Those claiming that there is no peace
partner on the German side are deluded and they are the real obstacle to
peace. We simply have to give Hitler a chance. He just wants a homeland
for his own people and his fair share of our territory! In addition, we
should stop giving encouragement to that neoconservative warmonger Winston
Churchill. Doesn't he realize that his plan to occupy other peoples cannot
Let's take a lesson from our rich and wonderful heritage. The Bible itself
calls upon us to pursue peace.
Stop the shooting. Start the talking. Now!
Signed, Peace Now, Warsaw Chapter

3. Statement by Israeli Professors for Human Rights and Justice:

We, the progressive professors for peace and human rights and
justice, hereby condemn the barbaric Israeli attempt at preventing Syria
from producing nuclear weapons of mass destruction. How dare those
Zionists violate Syrian air space and destroy the North Korean nuclear
facilities Syria was developing for peaceful uses. After all, Israel has
nukes so why should not Syria under Asad get them also. Fair is fair It
is not like he was really going to use them on the Jews or anything.

All lovers of peace must support the right of Syria and Iran to build
nuclear facilities and accumulate lots of plutonium. It is the only way
to deter Israeli aggression and prevent Jews from abusing their
self-determination. It is nothing more than containment of Israeli
colonialism and protest againt settlement construction.

The Jews should defuse the situation by agreeing to live inside a
peaceful unified Middle East, one in which they would have nothing to fear
from Syrian nuclear weapons, especially if they convert to Islam. Some
might even be allowed to visit al-Quds after the One-State Solution is
imposed. As for those American imperialists, we make no promises. As
long as America is no more than a puppet of the Israel Lobby, occupying
Iraq on behalf of Zionism, and controlled by Jewish neoconservatives, it
remains unsafe from the weapons being developed by the oppressed masses of
the progressive world.

That being the case, we demand that Israel immediately accept the
suggestion already being made by Shimon Peres and Yossi Beilin, that
Israel compensate Syria at once for the senseless attack by its air force
and give it replacement nuclear facilities. Once that is done, we have
no doubt that Syria will open peace talks with the Zionist entity.

4. A Declaration of Protest by the Women in Black, Machsom Watch,
Professors for Peace and Equality, Yesh Gvul, Taayoush, MAPAM, The HADASH
Party, and members of the political science department at Ben Gurion
University and the philosophy department at Tel Aviv University (2006)

We, progressive lovers of peace, are outraged. How dare Ukraine pass such
a reactionary anti-peace law! The Ukrainian parliament yesterday passed by
a vote of 233 to 1 a law declaring that the mass starvation of Ukrainians
in 1932-33 constituted intentional genocide and was a crime against
humanity. We salute that one dissident who voted against the
parliamentary atrocity.

Now we think that Ukraine has taken things out of context. After all,
Comrade Stalin was merely defending the Revolution against
counter-revolutionary agents and saboteurs! Had he not implemented true
equality in the Ukraine, all sorts of horrid things might have occurred
instead, such as capitalism and Zionism. You cannot make a quiche without
breaking some legs, er, eggs.

But the worst part of this new aggression by the Ukraine against the
memory of Comrade Stalin, the Sun of the Nations, is that it might mislead
people into thinking that socialism cannot work and that dictatorship of
the proletariat leads to genocide. Even worse, it might make people
believe that capitalism produces wealth and food for the masses!

We are workers (well, never mind that most of us do not have a job) who
have elected ourselves spokespersons for the working class, that class
that must exercise its total and exclusive sovereignty and power within
each country, including the Ukraine, Russia, and Israel. We dream of the
day when we will all be as equal and free as our comrade brethren and
sistren in North Korea and Cuba, although Castro has been backtracking
recently and actually letting his subjects grow some food. Besides, who
says people need to eat more than once a day, and what is wrong with a
diet of sawdust? Look how happy the North Koreans are with it!

So we progressive peace-lovers in occupied Palestine demand that all
people of good will denounce not only Zionist imperialism and occupation,
but also Ukrainian aggression and war mongering.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Harold Pinter Recycled

1. "Uncle Bernie":

2. Wham bam thank you ma'am:,7340,L-3644073,00.html

3. The maliciously anti-Israel leftist Jewish playwright Harold Pinter
just died:

Pinter had been a long-term enemy of Israel and Jews, supported
international boycotts of Israel, was part of the movement to defend the
spy and traitor Mordecai Vanunu. Aside from turning out the unspeakably
boring and silly "plays" for which he got a Nobel Prize, Pinter was best
known for his infantile anti-Americanism. Indeed, it was without a doubt
his hatred of America that entitled him to his Nobel Prize more than his
"dramas." If Arafat got a Nobel Peace Prize I suppose it made sense to
give Pinter a Nobel for literature. I personally find the poetry on the
walls of the stalls of public lavatories more inspiring.

Pinter insisted that Israel was responsible for all unrest in the world
( ).

Pinter is famous for saying the following: "The 911 atrocity in New York
was predictable and inevitable. It was an act of retaliation against constant
and systematic manifestations of state terrorism on the part of the United
States over many years, in all parts of the world..." Pinter described
America as "a country run by a bunch of criminal lunatics"

Here is an item I posted about Pinter in 2005: :
Plaut's Complaint
Nobel playwriter Harold Pinter not only hates America and Britain, but he
also hates Israel and Jews. The fact that he is a Jewish-born hater of
Israel is hardly unusual these days in the fever swamps of the Left.
Pinter a while ago made these moonbatesque defamations against Israel and
"Pinter went on to assert that the one situation that outraged him above
all else was the Israeli `injustice to the Palestinians,' which is an
issue that exercises many, but he then went on to say, in the context of
George Bush's pursuit of Saddam and his weapons of mass destruction, that
Israel possesses these weapons `and has used them." (emphasis added)

Pinter also is quoted there as saying:
"The USA is intent on controlling the world and the world's resources."
"Bush is on a par with Saddam."
"Please wash the cucumber sandwiches down with a glass of blood, with my
compliments." (open letter to George Bush)
"Israel's injustice to the Palestinians is an outrage."

Pinter has long been a promoter of Israel.s most famous convicted traitor,
Mordecai Vanunu, who spent time in jail for espionage activities against
Israel. Treason against Israel makes him a hero in Pinter's mind. When
interviewed and challenged about his anti-Americanism, Pinter responded,
"Look, there is a vast Gulag going on in America." (If Pinter is so
concerned about human rights in the United States, why did he accept the
hospitality of scores of Americans who spent a fortune on feting him in
2001?) We take note of Pinter's loathing of a country that has provided
him with millions of dollars in theatre takings and that has honoured him
with recognition.
Some other Pinter rantings are cited here: and

See also this:

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Kenneth Levin on Academic Debasement


By: Kenneth Levin

Date: Wednesday, December 24 2008
The core of the Arab-Israeli problem is Israel's "territorial addiction."
So declares a December 3 Haaretz article by one Alex Sinclair.

As to the solution, Sinclair does not quite echo Haaretz's former
executive editor David Landau, who urged Condoleezza Rice a year ago to
"rape" Israel. Rather, he advocates a friendly but forceful stand by
President-elect Obama to break Israel of its addiction - promoting, in the
jargon of addiction treatment (although Sinclair doesn't use the term),
less violent-sounding "tough love" instead of rape.

Implicit in Sinclair's metaphor is the conviction that Israel has no
legitimate or rational claim to any part of the territories and that its
seeking to retain a presence there is entirely pathological.
Not for him the perspective of the authors of UN Security Council
Resolution 242, passed in the wake of the 1967 war and subsequently the
starting point for all Arab-Israeli negotiations.
That document calls for Israel not to return to its pre-1967 lines but
rather to negotiate "secure and recognized boundaries" with its neighbors
- and Resolution 242's authors explicitly declared their conviction that
it would be a grievous error to push Israel back to its former lines.

Lord Caradon, Britain's ambassador to the United Nations at the time and
the person who introduced the resolution in the Security Council, observed
some years later:
It would have been wrong to demand that Israel return to its positions of
June 4, 1967, because those positions were undesirable and artificial.
After all, they were just the places where the soldiers of each side
happened to be on the day the fighting stopped in 1948. They were just
armistice lines. That's why we didn't demand that the Israelis return to
them, and I think we were right not to...
The American ambassador to the UN at the time concurred, noting that
"Israel's prior frontiers had proved to be notably insecure."

And President Lyndon Johnson, shortly after the 1967 war, declared that
Israel's return to its former lines would be "not a prescription for peace
but for renewed hostilities." Johnson advocated new "recognized
boundaries" that would provide "security against terror, destruction, and

A number of subsequent presidents have reiterated Johnson's position on
borders and several have done so in even stronger terms regarding Israel's
need to retain some of the areas captured in 1967.

Also in the wake of the 1967 war, a memorandum written by the U.S. Joint
Chiefs of Staff stated: "From a strictly military point of view, Israel
would require the retention of some Arab territory to provide militarily
defensible borders."

But Sinclair, in his cavalier attitude toward Israel's security, does not
merely take issue with differing views; he doesn't even acknowledge them.
On the contrary, he presents no evidence to rebut those views or to
bolster his own position. Instead, he offers his "territorial addiction"
metaphor as though it were established truth and devotes his entire piece
to expanding on the metaphor.

Thus, he lists the recommended interventions that an addict's friends and
family can employ to win their loved one from his or her addiction,
including interventions which the addict might resist. And he declares
that these actions should be a model for Obama's policies toward Israel:

Obama must tell us [after indicting Israel for its "addiction," Sinclair
inexplicably shifts to referring to Israel as "us"] in clear terms how
harmful our activities and behavior are to ourselves, to our friends, and
to those around us. He must tell us what we need to do and what will no
longer be tolerated. And he must help us carry out that program.

The absence of argument, the heavy-handed elaboration, the sheer
mindlessness of the piece, is even more amazing in that Sinclair is a
teacher. He is identified in Haaretz as "a lecturer in Jewish education at
the Schechter Institute of Jewish Studies, and an adjunct assistant
professor of Jewish education at the Jewish Theological Seminary of

There was a time when the essence of pedagogy was training students in how
to think and write critically; how to formulate an argument and muster
evidence in its defense. It entailed weaning students away from believing
it sufficient simply to state one's conviction, perhaps metaphorically,
and then expound on the implications of the conviction until reaching some
requisite number of words.

Jews are known for often being in the forefront of developments in
academia. Recent decades have seen a notable debasement in standards in
the social sciences, humanities, and pedagogy. Alex Sinclair's Haaretz
piece on Israel's "territorial addiction" suggests that some Jews in the
area of Jewish Studies are pioneering new frontiers of academic

Kenneth Levin is a psychiatrist and historian and the author of "The Oslo
Syndrome: Delusions of a People Under Siege."

2. A Great Column on Hannuka:

3. Does Obama have a Mideast Policy?

Incidentally, there are some reports on the web that some members of the
Obama team have been meeting with reps of the picayune far-Leftist Jewish
anti-Zionist groups, Jewish anti-Semites like J-Street. If Obama's people
think that Jewish anti-Semites are representative of the Jewish community,
things look very bleak.

4. It is now official. Meretz has decreed that there are no such things
as Israeli Arabs. Instead, there are "Palestinian Israelis." See:

From the Yid with Lid blog:
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Peace Now--Stupid Forever !!!

You know, this one reminds me of a game show. I am talking about those
times when the contestant should keep their 100 thousand dollars and go
home, but he decides to try to double the money just one more time--even
though the entire audience is screaming "don't be an ass !" When this guy
opens up whats behind door number 3 on national television and it turns
out he traded 100 grand for 12 dollars and a stick of bazooka Joe, he
looks like the biggest ass that ever lived, the only redeeming feature is
the confused look of horror on his face because he know that everyone who
ever knew him knows how stupid he looks.

Peace Now spent a year working through the Israeli courts trying to get
the IDF to release papers they thought would prove their contention that
86% a particular settlement was built on private Arab land. A year ago
September they got to open up door number three and were left with that
stupid, confused look of horror on their faces. Because when the IDF
released the information they were looking for, Peace Now's 86% number was
only off by 85.5%.

The community, Ma'ale Adumim, sued Peace Now for libel and today an
Israeli court Awarded Ma'ale Adumim $20,000 dollars as it cited the
organization and its employees for lying about the settlement. I only wish
I could have been a bug on the wall of the meeting where they found out.
Hey Shmuly, what happened ? You said 86% !!! Do you know how stupid we

Yes Peace Now, we know how stupid you always look---But you look
especially stupid today.

Read the rest of the story below:

Israeli Court: Peace Now Lied, must Pay Now-Camera by Alex Safian, PhD

Peace Now, the Israel-based advocacy group claimed in a controversial
report, Breaking the Law - One Violation Leads to Another, that "a large
proportion of the settlements built on the West Bank are built on
privately owned Palestinian land," including 86.4% of Ma'ale Adumim's land
and 35.1% of Ariel's. Overall, the report claims, "Palestinians privately
own nearly 40% of the land on which settlements have been built." This is
in direct contradiction to often repeated claims by numerous Israeli
governments that settlements are built only on state (that is, public)
land and not on private land.

CAMERA raised numerous factual and legal objections to Peace Now's claims
(see here and here), which the group never addressed. Peace Now, however,
was eventually forced to admit that no more than 0.54% of Ma'ale Adumim's
land was privately owned by Palestinians. That is, Peace Now had erred by
almost 16,000 percent!

Now comes word of another error - one with real consequences. Peace Now
claimed in its original report that the community of Revava sat on land
that was 71.15% privately owned by Palestinians. Revava did not agree that
any of their land was privately owned by Palestinians. According to an
article in Israel National News Revava therefore complained to Peace Now,
which, without admitting any error, reduced the figure of 71.15% to 22%.

Peace Now, however, refused to accurately correct their original claim,
and refused to issue an apology. The group that formally owns Revava's
land, The Fund for Redeeming the Land, then sued Peace Now and the
report's authors (Dror Etkes and Hagit Ofran) for libel in Jerusalem
Magistrates Court.

The decision came on December 11th and it was a slam dunk for Revava and
Fund attorney Doron Nir Tzvi. Justice Yehezkel Barclay convicted Peace Now
and its staffers of libel, ordered them to pay the Fund 20,000 NIS plus
tax, and to make a public apology which they must publish in the
newspapers Ha'aretz and Maariv.

Will Peace Now finally come clean and admit that the rest of their report
is also nonsense? Or will each community that it libeled have to file a
similar lawsuit for the full truth to come out?

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Hannuka Among the Hellenists

1. In praise of "Bogey" Yaalon:

2. Hannuka Among the Hellenists
December 15, 2006
Hannuka Among the Hellenists
By Steven Plaut
Of all the Jewish holidays, the one that I think best captures the
contemporary Jewish zeitgeist, the one that is the most relevant to the
current (and, if certain trends are not reversed, the last?) chapter in
Jewish history, is Hannuka.

Hannuka is, of course, the story of Jewish national liberation. It is the
story of the military victory of the few against the many, of the
champions of Judaism against the pagan barbarians.
But it is more than this. It is the saga of the heroic struggle of Jewish
survivalists (those one would today label "Zionists") against the
assimilationists and self-hating Hellenists of the second century BCE.

Hannuka is less a story about the battle against the Greeks than it is
about the battle against the predominant assimilationist paradigm at the
time among the Jews. It is about the battle against the anti-survivalists,
those who hated themselves for being Jews, those who seek to be
"progressive", "modern", and "in", through rejecting, abasing, disgracing
and degrading themselves and their people. The Hellenists who fought the
Hasmoneans were struggling against Jewish survival. Sound familiar?
In the United States, the main movement of Hellenistic assimilationism has
been the school of "Political Liberalism as Judaism", the pseudo-religion
that holds that all of Judaism can be reduced to the pursuit of this
week's liberal political fads. But the global avante garde of Jewish
self-hatred these days is the Israeli Left.
The Israeli Left is the main manifestation today of Jewish anti-Semitism.

It not only promotes "plans" and policies designed to end Israel's
existence, increasingly endorsing the one-state, bi-national Rwanda
solution to the "problem" of Israeli national existence, but it also
regularly attacks every symbol and concept of traditional Judaism.
You think I am exaggerating? Well just consider the Op-Ed a few years back
in the Israeli anti-Zionist daily Haaretz, penned by one Yehiam Sorek, a
"historian" who teaches at the Beit Berl College in Israel. Beit Berl is a
college run by the kibbutz movement.
The "historian" Sorek devoted his Haaretz column to proving that the
Maccabees were fascist and racist hooligans, bloodthirsty zealots, and
downright Likudniks. His column was entitled "Bloodthirsty Zealots". His
thesis was that Jews should stop celebrating Hannuka and the exploits of
the Maccabees, and should instead feel sympathy for the poor occupied and
mistreated Greeks and Hellenists.
His article was not a spoof.
The evil Maccabees were plotting to perpetrate population "transfer",
wrote Sorek, that most evil of all crimes in the "minds" of Israel's
fundamentalist Leftists. Population "transfer" is far worse than, say,
mass murdering 2000 Jews after signing with them a series of peace
accords, or turning the West Bank and Gaza over to barbarian fascists to
allow them to carry out such mass murders. Sorek is a member of that same
Fundamentalist Left that will not rest until all Jews have been expelled
from the West Bank and Gaza in an act of ethnic cleansing, and until no
Israeli armed forces are left behind to interfere with the terrorist
activities of the "Palestinians."
Matityahu, the father of Judah Maccabee and his brothers, was a lunatic,
wrote Sorek. He was a warmonger who dragged his country into an
unnecessary "war of choice", one that was not a legitimate "war of
self-defense". (Never mind that there is nothing at all in Judaism that
says Jews should refrain from conquering their lands unless it is part of
a war of self-defense.) The Maccabees were the aggressors, insisted Sorek.
And they suppressed the free speech of those who supported the Greeks; how
undemocratic of them!
Judah Maccabee was guilty of causing many families to lose their loved
ones by leading people to war, wrote Sorek, instead of pursuing some sort
of Hellenistic Oslo appeasement and capitulation, the sort the
"enlightened Left" seeks today to impose upon Israel. All Judah Maccabee
really wanted to do was to Occupy, Occupy, Occupy, insists Sorek. No
better than the West Bank settlers today! And not only that, but Judah and
his hooligans were Orthodox Jews, which every leftist knows must make them
primitive and barbaric; you know, unlike the enlightened Marxist
historians who live on nice kibbutzim or teach at the Beit Berl college.
Unfortunately, Sorek is hardly a lone phenomenon. Israel's anti-Jewish
leftists have been launching similar jihads against every other symbol of
Jewish valor. Masada was a cesspool of non-tolerant fanatics, according to
them. The Bible is a backward document full of fabrications. Schools
should stop teaching it altogether, they demand, and instead teach
something really useful, like the works of Palestinian "poets". Archeology
proves the Bible is nothing but lies and fantasy, they insist. One wag
labeled such people Pentateuch Deniers (intended as a play on "Holocaust
In Israel, the country's politics - particularly its cultural/educational
elite and its chattering classes - are now largely dominated by those
motivated by the desire for their country to commit national suicide. They
scorn themselves, their own country and their own people, the same way
that the Hellenized Jews did at the time of the Maccabees. Many endorse
boycotts of Israel by anti-Semites abroad. Like the Hellenized Jews, they
are convinced that traditionalist Jews are reactionary and primitive, and
that the greatest national priority should be renunciation of Jewish
peculiarity and the striving to assimilate amongst the cosmopolitan
progressive "Greeks" of the world. They are ashamed of their Jewishness
and convinced that the only path to peace is to renounce it. They insist
that a Seleucid "narrative" should replace the Jews' own reactionary
national one.
Israel's universities are by and large the Occupied Territories of these
Hellenists. The Israeli media is to almost the same extent. Hellenists
dominate much of the Israeli military and, somewhat incredibly, the
intelligence services. (It is doubtful the country could have undergone
the Oslo debacle had these intelligence services not operated as lap dogs
for the Beilinized Israeli Left.)
Hellenists have attempted to rewrite the Israeli school curriculum, to
teach Israeli Jewish children to despise themselves. Their message is that
Jews must feel ashamed, because they are mean, selfish, evil and immoral
people. Surely, there would be no anti-Semitism on the planet were not the
Jews such racist and insensitive people.
Their aim is to convince the Jews that the only way they may become
accepted in the world is to adapt to paganism, to stop seeking to exist as
a separate national entity, to commit national suicide. Moreover, their
campaign is aimed at challenging the moral existence of the Jews. They
realize this is the weakest chink in the armor of the Jews. If Jews can be
convinced that they are morally in the wrong, then no Maccabees will
emerge. The aim of the Jewish Hellenists is the delegitimization of the
Jews as a nation, discrediting the moral position of Jewish survivalism.
The message of the contemporary Hellenists is unambiguous: Those who wish
to purify the Temple, who seek pure oil for the Temple lamp, who wish to
evict the barbarians from Jerusalem, are the enemies of peace. The
Maccabees must be arrested for incitement. The Jews must provide Antiochus
with concessions and arms and funds and a Road Map. Under no circumstances
should the Jews seek to defend themselves militarily against the
Seleucids, for there is no military solution to the problem of Seleucid
aggression. If the barbarians murder the Jews, it is because the Jews are
evil, selfish people and because they have been too reluctant to abandon
their primitive survivalism.
If the Israeli anti-Jewish Left has its way, the Post-Hasmonean,
post-survivalist era will be upon us.
See also:

The director or Beit Berl is Ruthie Gavri at
Phone 972-9-7476302

Beit Berl's fax is 972-9-7476340
A form letter on the web for writing Beit Berl is here.

You may also wish to write to the Minister of Education, Yuli Tamir, email , make cc to and

Article can be read here. Sorek's email address is

3. So why not apply capital punishment NOW to HIM?,7340,L-3642661,00.html

4. Who let the dog out (of Gaza)?,7340,L-3642749,00.html

Spinners and cheaters

6. God Is a Problem, Sources Say
How secular newsrooms handle stories with a religious component.
In a jarring misreading of the Islamist mentality, the New York Times last
month described a Jewish center in Mumbai, India, as the "unlikely target"
of the terrorists who attacked various locations there. "It is not known
if the Jewish center was strategically chosen," the Times went on to
declare, "or if it was an accidental hostage scene."

Paul Marshall would not be surprised by such stunningly statements.
In "Blind Spot: When Journalists Don't Get Religion" -- a collection of
essays that he edited with Lela Gilbert and Roberta Green Ahmanson -- he
notes that similar assertions have been common in the coverage of Islamic
terrorism. The book's contributors explore all sorts of news stories with
a religious component -- Islamic and otherwise -- showing where reporters
have veered off course and discussing the reasons why.
Despite 9/11 and dozens of equally pitiless massacres, some journalists,
Mr. Marshall says, are reluctant to accept the "fundamental religious
dimension" of jihadist motives. Such journalists concentrate on "terrorist
statements that might fit into secular Western preconceptions about
oppression, economics, freedom and progress." When terrorists murdered
Christian workers while sparing Muslims in the offices of a Karachi
charity in 2002, Mr. Marshall observes, "CNN International contented
itself with the opinion that there was 'no indication of a motive.' Would
it have said the same if armed men had invaded a multiracial center,
separated the black people from the white people, then methodically killed
all the blacks and spared all the whites?"
But surely journalists do a better job at stories in their own backyards.
Actually, no. According to the evidence in "Blind Spot," the coverage is
often worse. Jeremy Lott reminds us, for example, of the media hysteria in
2004 that greeted the release of the movie "The Passion of the Christ."
Never mind that director Mel Gibson seemed to confirm the worst suspicions
of his critics two years later when he spouted anti-Semitic drivel after
an arrest for drunken driving. The contempt of journalists was hardly
reserved for the director alone. Many confidently predicted that, if by
some chance this violent rendition of Jesus' death found an audience, it
would unleash a surge in anti-Semitic bigotry or even an orgy of violence.
Such forecasts appear delusional in retrospect. They were possible, Mr.
Lott maintains, because of "a troubling willingness by journalists to
believe the worst of religious would-be moviegoers."
Blind Spot
Edited by Paul Marshall, Lela Gilbert and Roberta Green Ahmanson
(Oxford, 220 pages, $19.95)
The chasm between a profoundly secular media and their audience was also
unmistakable upon the death in 2005 of John Paul II. Although the pope's
international legacy was treated with respect in most post-mortems --
reporters could hardly miss his role in the fall of communism -- his
influence within the church was described in decidedly less flattering
terms. " 'Disciplinarian' was often used," Amy Welborn tells us, "as was
'authoritarian' and even 'monarchical.' "
Most journalists apparently believed that the "only Catholics dissatisfied
with his pontificate were those advocating women's ordination or changing
Church positions on abortion or homosexuality," yet the pope took
positions and made appointments that bothered traditionalists, too.
Indeed, the most notable excommunication of his papacy was of the "deeply
traditionalist archbishop Marcel Lefebvre." In some respects, Ms. Welborn
argues, conservative Catholics may have been even more frustrated by John
Paul's papacy than liberals.
The same conservative template was immediately imposed on Cardinal Joseph
Ratzinger when he became Pope Benedict XVI. The gentle, complex
intellectual the public has grown to know over the past three years was
variously described as "polarizing," "hard line" and, in an oft-repeated
phrase, "God's Rottweiler" because of his Vatican role, as cardinal, in
protecting church doctrine and disciplining theologians.
No less revealing has been coverage of the faith-based effort to deploy
U.S. foreign policy on behalf of victims of persecution. An alliance that
included conservative evangelicals, the Catholic Church, Jewish groups and
a variety of other organizations prodded Congress into passing four
watershed measures: the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998, the
Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, the Sudan Peace Act of 2002
and the North Korean Human Rights Act of 2004. "Any one of these
initiatives is a major story," Allen D. Hertzke writes, "but together they
represent the most important human rights movement since the end of the
cold war."
Not only was this story underplayed in the press; it was often miscast as
merely a crusade of Christian conservatives and reported with patronizing,
skeptical references to their claims -- as if the persecution of
Christians abroad was a matter of debate. Too many journalists apparently
have trouble treating with respect any movement in which Christian
conservatives provide what Mr. Hertzke calls "crucial grass-roots muscle."
Such attitudes no doubt explain the media's double standard in the
coverage of the 2004 presidential election. As C. Danielle Vinson and
James L. Guth observe: "The Bush campaign in evangelical churches was
portrayed as unusual and certainly questionable, whereas [John] Kerry's
outreach through black churches was seen as routine." Ms. Vinson and Mr.
Guth maintain that "the most significant problem is not media bias but
media ignorance," but their own evidence suggests that the problem is
equal parts of both.
Many journalists, it would seem, equate modernity with secularism. Yet God
refuses to retire, not only in this country but in most of the rest of the
world. Terry Mattingly offers a prescription for better coverage: "Editors
do not need to try to hire more reporters who are religious believers," he
says, but they do need to hire more journalists "who take religion
seriously, reporters who know, or are willing to learn to hear the music."
At a time of newsroom cutbacks, such advice may fall on barren soil. If
so, the news media will continue to miss a vast dimension of mankind's
Mr. Carroll is editorial-page editor of the Rocky Mountain News.
7. Leftwing Anti-Semitism: a Good Bibliography:

Olmert's Friends, again:

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