Thursday, 26 May 2011

Amnesty "Debate": Yes, Israel Controls The Media

The Amnesty-MEMO event on "Complicity in Oppression: Does the Media Aid Israel" that took place on Monday sounds as bad as expected, and it can't really be called a debate when only one point of view is aired. All of the speakers believe that Israel controls the media, and Jonathan Hoffman and Richard Millet, who attended said that no pro-Israel questions were taken.

Millet points out that Amnesty's defence of the event doesn't really stand, that “Those who disagree with MEMO, or indeed any apsect of the event, are of course welcome to attend and make their point in a reasonable way.

Millet quotes Greg Philo (the author of the book that Tim Llewellyn, another speaker, endorsed in the Guardian) complaining that the BBC would say things like "Israel's attack on Hamas enters its second week" when it should say "Israel's attack on the Palestinians". Well, perhaps you could call that bias if Israel did deliberately target civilians. But, as all the evidence proves, Israel did not deliberately target civilians.

Philo also complains that:
"As a consequence [of the pro-Israel media bias] although the public had sympathy for the Palestinians, they wanted the Palestinians to stop firing rockets at Israel. He quoted a woman in one of his focus groups who said: 'When I saw the pictures of the dead children, it was dreadful. I was in tears. But it didn’t make me feel that the Palestinians and Hamas were right. I think the Palestinians haven’t taken the chance to work towards a peaceful solution.'"
So first Philo whines that people want the Palestinians to stop firing rockets at Israel, and then he whines that people think the Palestinians aren't doing enough to advance peace! Because in his mind firing rockets is advancing peace?!
Hoffman relays that when Abdel Bari Atwan spoke:
"The first thing he did – to prove that 'the Israel Lobby' was out to silence him – was to hold up the JC’s front page: 'How Was This Hatefest Allowed on Campus?' Atwan is convinced that the 'Israel Lobby' is to blame for the fact that he is not invited as a guest on TV shows, and he thinks he gets 'worse coverage than Adolf Hitler'."
Hoffman points out "Has he considered that it might just have something to do with the fact that he is an extremist who says that he will 'dance in Trafalgar Square' if Iranian missiles hit Israel?".

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Failed Attempts To Undermine Netanyahu's Speech

Criticisms of Netanyahu's excellent - and brutally honest - speech at Congress were varied, from the Palestinians, to the Liberal Intellectual Journalist, to the 'As A Jew' Jew:

Abbas' "moderate" Fatah interpreted Netanyahu's outline for peace as a "declaration of war", by which they actually meant "we're bored, we want to start a war". They would've had this reaction whatever Netanyahu said in his speech. Except, perhaps, if he said that all the Jews are just going to curl up and die to solve all the world's problems.

The AP's Josef Federman wrote a "Fact check", attempting to contradict Netanyahu's speech with "facts". To Netanyahu's statement "You don't need to send American troops to Israel. We defend ourselves", Federman says that Israel receives military aid from America every year. Whilst America's assistance is undoubtedly helpful, Israel is painfully aware that we can't rely fully on others to defend us. A mere two years after the Jews were nearly wiped out in the Holocaust, the Arabs tried to do it again to the Jews in Israel, but our collective army succeeded in defending the Jews and Israel. The other point, which Honest Reporting makes, is that Federman is deliberately taking Netanyahu's statements out of context to fit his own agenda. In this case, Netanyahu's followed that statement by saying "You've been very generous in giving us tools to do the job of defending Israel on our own."

At Netanyahu referring to Israel as a democracy, Federman objects that the Palestinians in the West Bank can't vote in Israeli elections. Well, why would they? They're ruled by a Palestinian government. I'm not allowed to vote in Israel either.

When Netanyahu called Hamas the Palestinian equivalent of Al Qaida, Federman protests that Al Qaida criticises Hamas as being too moderate. Oh, well if Al Qaida says it, it must be true! Federman also says that whilst Al Qaida preaches global jihad, "Hamas says its struggle is solely against Israel". First, even if that was true, does that mean Hamas can be excused for murdering Jews, as long as they're Israeli Jews? Second, it's not true; Hamas' charter calls for the murder of all Jews. Silly question for Federman: whose side are you on?! Obviously, he chooses Hamas; which is fine, each to their own. But don't pretend to care about the accuracy of the statements Netanyahu made in his speech ; Hamas certainly aren't bothered by that sort of thing, they have bigger issues, like the fact that Israel exists.

Predictably, the Guardian ran an article today criticising Obama by a token 'As A Jew' Jew, Jane Eisner. I think they have a cycle of whose turn it is to bash Israel. First it's a white person, then an Arab, then a terrorist (usually from Hamas), and then a self-hating Jew, and then it starts again. You can't say they aren't diverse!

Eisner starts off by making sure everyone knows she speaks for all American Jews: Netanyahu's "third audience was the American Jewish community. People like me."

She then, with admirable honesty, explains why she's writing this article in the first place: "whether the prime minister's spirited defence of the status quo and his reluctance to offer a way back to the negotiating table will be received well by the White House is an open question. And that puts American Jews in a difficult, uncomfortable situation." It's very rare for these type of Jews to admit that their criticism is because of fear of world opinion on Israel and Israel's supporters.

She states the obvious, that Jews want there to be harmony between the leaders of the US and Israel, but I give American Jews more credit than Eisner does. I think American Jews (and most Jews in outside of Israel)  don't take the easy way out when they find themselves in the "difficult, uncomfortable situation" where there is friction between the leaders. They stand up for what they believe is true and right - and like all of Israel's supporters, we'd rather be alive and hated than dead and loved.

Eisner doesn't seem to be in that camp though: The leaders' relationship "got awfully bumpy at times. I fear the impasse is only growing. It need not be this way". Her main concern is Israel's relationship with America; never mind the consequences for Israel if America's ideas don't turn out to be very good ones, never mind all the lessons we've learnt from the Holocaust and after, like how only we are able to ensure our own survival. As long as Obama likes us!

She then revels her own ignorance when she claims that many, like Obama have acknowledged that "the borders of Israel before the 1967 war, before the 43 year occupation, are the starting point for negotiations with Palestinians". They weren't borders, they were ceasefire lines. The land is disputed, not occupied. And it makes more sense that the starting point for negotiations would be for the Palestinian leaders to demonstrate an interest in peace, rather than continuous incitement to terrorism and rejection of Israel's legitimacy. As Netanyahu has explained, the 1967 lines are indefensible*, and "were not the boundaries of peace, they were the boundaries of repeated wars".

Eisner complains:
"Netanyahu's defiant stance puts us in a heart-wrenching conundrum. We can choose to support his view of the world, in which an aggrieved Israel bears no responsibility for the occupation and for the impasse in negotiations... But most of us don't want further procrastination but an end to the conflict, which has stained Israel's moral standing in the way that occupation and continued violence does to anyone". 
Well if that's how she sees the conflict, then it really shouldn't be a "heart-wrenching conundrum" for her. She claims "Most of us, I bet, hoped that Netanyahu would have issued a bold, creative speech that would have moved the process forward." Speak for yourself, Jane Eisner. Most of us just wanted Netanyahu's assurance of his commitment to the security of Israel's citizens. If the Palestinians want to talk about peace, we're waiting.

*That video is not a solution to the conflict, it is just to show how Israel would be most secure.

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Abbas Extremism Continues

In the last few days we've seen Abbas demonstrate more and more extremist tendencies.

First he re-wrote the history of Israel in the New York Times, blaming the entire situation on Israel and absolving the Palestinians of an blame, ignoring all the peace proposals they have rejected.

Then he rejected Obama calling the Hamas-Fatah reconciliation an obstacle to peace, saying "Hamas is a part of Palestinian society".

Now, for anyone who was still in doubt about his views, he denied the thousands of years old Jewish connection to Israel, and said "Netanyahu, you are incidental in history. We are the people of history. We are the owners of history". As PMW point out, even the Koran makes no reference to a Palestinian people, whereas the Jewish history in Israel has been corroborated by archaeological finds.

Abbas' statements are not shocking, they're just idiocy, what's shocking is that he is taken seriously as the Palestinian leader. This blog post isn't about that though.

It turns out Abbas is worse than I thought. In 1984 (yes it may have been a long time ago but he was 50 years old), Abbas wrote a book in Arabic in which he denied that gas chambers were used to murder Jews in the Holocaust, and that it was a "fantastic lie" that six million Jews were murdered. He acknowledged that some were killed, but apparently this was because it was the aim of "The Zionist movement", who "led a broad campaign of incitement against the Jews living under Nazi rule, in order to arouse the government's hatred of them, to fuel vengeance against them, and to expand the mass extermination".

The fact that Abbas is a virtual Holocaust denier and crazier conspiracy theorist than he's appeared to be
just makes all his current actions make a whole lot more sense. I was thinking that maybe joining Hamas has started to affect him, but really he's just showing more of his true colours that he's been attempting to hide all these years behind his reformed, supposedly "moderate" character. Maybe that is the effect Hamas have been having on him, who knows. The only certainty is that Abbas is extremist and untrustworthy, and not a really great prospect as a partner for peace.

On BBC Bias

The Guardian really plugged the Israel haters yesterday; as well as publishing a letter from the senior editor of the pro-Hamas MEMO, they also published an article alleging that the BBC is biased towards Israel, by Tim Llewellyn, another of the speakers at MEMO's debate yesterday on the same subject.

Llewellyn's agenda is evident from the beginning. In the second paragraph he claims:
"The BBC coverage of Israel and Palestine, where another state continually kills and oppresses Arabs, is replete with imbalance and distortion".
His summing up of the conflict, as Israel intentionally and maliciously oppressing the Palestinians for no apparent reason is simply absurd and the fact that he follows this by lecturing the BBC on "imbalance and distortion" renders his entire article a joke.

He lists ways the media is supposedly biased towards Israel, according to a book co-written by Greg Philo, also a speaker at the debate:
"They find that the Israeli explanation of why it went to war on a mainly defenceless Gazan population is the one broadly accepted by the BBC. It was a 'response' to Palestinian rockets. The Palestinian case, that the Israelis violated a ceasefire that had held for nearly five months in November 2008, and that the Gazans had endured many years of intensifying siege and blockade, which had reduced them to stagnation and penury, was rarely put, if at all... The BBC repeatedly stressed the word [Israeli] 'retaliation'". 
But Israel didn't go to war on the "defenceless Gazan population", it targetted Hamas and the evidence is in the ratio of civilians to terrorists killed; much lower than in other conflicts, with Hamas confessing to over 700 terrorists being killed, all this bearing in mind all the precautions Israel took to minimize civilian casualties, and the fact that Hamas used the Palestinians as human shields. Also it is undeniable that the war was a response - Hamas fired about 200 rockets into Israel in November 2008. They are entirely to blame for the plight of the Palestinians in Gaza, so Llewellyn's complaints are void.

"They cite a BBC reporter saying: 'Israel feels itself surrounded by enemies, with reason.' They add: 'We have not found a commentary noting that 'Palestinians feel themselves to be subject to a brutal military occupation, with reason.' Israel's official view is given as fact, they say, but the Palestinian view, on the rare occasions it is found at all, is not. Israelis 'state', Palestinians 'claim'."
The first point above is true, the media hardly ever cite the real reasons for the conflict, how aside from the fact that Hamas want to destroy Israel, they also constantly act directly against the Palestinians' best interests. As for the second point, it's just not true - Palestinians' lies are constantly repeated as fact (eg. Israel murdered a peaceful protestor with tear gas), and when the truth comes out (she wasn't even at the protest, she died of medical issues), the media never report what actually happened. On the rare occasion that they do say the Palestinians "claim", well, it might be because it's not unheard of for Palestinians to tell outright lies. (eg. Palestinians "claim" Israel eats Palestinian babies; Palestinians "claim" there is no Jewish connection to the land of Israel etc etc).
"Israeli attacks are always reported as retaliation to Palestinian violence or rockets, and the idea that Palestinian rockets, however ineffective, are armed resistance to Israel's hammering from land, sea and air is rarely broadcast. The daily indignities and brutalities of the siege and the occupation and the shelling and shooting of civilians are virtually absent from BBC consciousness unless an attack on Israel sparks interest."
Here Llewellyn shows that he views rockets targetted at innocent civilians as a justified "response" ("resistance") to Israel killing the terrorists who fire the rockets. That and the fact that he calls the rockets "ineffective" when just last month an Israeli schoolboy was killed, is insane and obscene. And whilst it is constantly reported when Palestinians are killed, whether they are terrorists, or civilians where terrorists had just fired rockets from their back garden, the most common, almost daily, Palestinian attacks deliberately targetted at Israeli civilians (whether by rocks or rockets, both can be fatal) are rarely reported, much less when they celebrate and boast about it.
"what is missing from the coverage is the view that the Palestinians are engaged in a war of national liberation, trying to throw off an occupying force. Any Israeli casualty is headline news, shown in high quality images. BBC teams are based in West Jerusalem, de facto Israeli territory, and are on hand. Arab casualties may be shown in reports of a funeral, usually agency film, the victim anonymous"
This is just so untrue I really wonder where they get their "evidence" for this. Again Llewellyn demonstrates that he views Israeli citizens, whether a three month old baby or a 16 year old schoolboy or a pregnant woman, as legitimate targets because they are "an occupying force". And again, his second point is a blatant lie. Not only are Palestinian deaths reported in great detail - both visually and in words - and often out of context (if it's civilians ignoring how they are used as human shields, if it's terrorists showing their families mourning), but Israeli deaths are reported with much of the focus on how it would be considered Israel's fault, for example where the victims are called "hardline" settlers as though it's ok to kill a baby just because she lives on land that the Palestinians claim is theirs.

When Philo and Berry interviewed students, they found that they:
"were largely unaware of the Israeli occupation, often believing the Palestinians are the occupiers. Few knew that Hamas had been democratically elected in January 2006. 'I had the impression they were a terrorist group from watching the BBC' said one respondent."
Which is a bizarre quote to use to try to back up their claims of BBC bias, because everyone know Hamas is a terrorist organistaion, even they don't try to hide it - and just because they were "elected" doesn't change that fact. Just Journalism "recently addressed how a BBC profile of Hamas downplayed the Islamist group’s targeting of civilians and its extremist ideology."
If all that wasn't bad enough so far, Llewellyn ends the article by claiming that after 9/11:
"Israel and its friends were quick to capitalise on 'terror' and 'Arabs' and massively enhanced their propaganda here, gaining access to BBC staff at all levels".
So not only is he accusing Israel (or the "Zionist/Jewish lobby") of forcing the media to report what they tell them; he also accuses Israel of exploiting "terror" in quote marks, as if it doesn't exist and Israel's never experienced the consequences of terrorism. It's more than just ironic that Llewellyn's antisemitic implication of Jewish control over the media claims that the media is afraid of being called antisemitic, because this very claim seeks to undermine defenders of Israel and balanced reporting as "playing the antisemite card".

I've found fisking this article to be totally surreal, I can't quite believe the lies I've read. And it's even more surreal that I'm having to write in defence of the BBC's reporting, especially considering that there are so many instances where they clearly are biased against Israel.

For example, Just Journalism found Wyre Davies' BBC:
"analysis of Israel’s negative response to the Fatah-Hamas unity deal declines to engage directly with the reasons why Israel might be perturbed by Hamas being brought into the process, alternatively choosing to portray a gleeful Netanyahu with a new ‘message’ to ‘take to the wider world...
Davies denigrates any treatment of Hamas as a terrorist group, making absolutely no reference to the organisation’s long history of killing and maiming Israeli civilians in targeted attacks, which is the basis for the application of the terrorist label. He makes no reference to, nor takes account of, high profile recent statements by Hamas leaders that they will never accept Israel and want to see it expunged from the Middle East."
Meanwhile I look forward to Philo. Berry and Llewellyn's defence of Press TV.

Monday, 23 May 2011

Obama's Speech And The 1967 Lines

The senior editor of MEMO (the pro-Hamas group who are tonight, hosted by Amnesty holding a debate called "Complicity in Oppression: Does the Media Aid Israel?"), Ibrahim Hewitt, wrote in to The Guardian complaining about Obama's speech; that negotiations on land would "reward Israel for its illegal settlement policy" (disputed, not illegal), that a non-militarised Palestinian state would be "at the mercy of the Israel Defence Forces" (not such a bad thing; it's an indisputable fact that if the Palestinians put down their weapons the conflict would end but if Israel put theirs down they would be destroyed); that Israel is a Jewish state and that the US is committed to Israel's security. How terrible. 

It's not surprising that the Israel-bashers are disturbed by Obama's professed support for Israel, but the speech wasn't all good. Hewitt says that since Israel accepted the two-state proposal in 1947, (which the Palestinians rejected, as Abbas forgot to mention in his NYT op-ed), Israel should have no case not to go back to what Hewitt calls the "1967 borders", which is similar to what Obama suggested: "We believe the borders of Israel and Palestine should be based on the 1967 lines with mutually agreed swaps". 

Obama correctly called it lines, unlike Hewitt, because they were never borders. But if Israel did go back to the pre-'67 lines, Gaza would be part of Egypt, and the West Bank in Jordan. There never was a Palestinian state. The most obvious point to make, which Netanyahu did, brilliantly, is that those lines are indefensible, leaving Israel only nine miles wide - "these were not the boundaries of peace, they were the boundaries of repeated wars". They were unsustainable, and the only reason Israel is (bli ayin hara) more stable now than it was then is because it can defend itself, because it won that land when the Arabs started the '67 war. 

Just Journalism point out that the coverage of Obamas' speeches about Israel (in The White House, and at the AIPAC conference) focuses almost exclusively on his demands on Israel rather than his condemnation and demands of the Palestinians, such as that 
"the recent agreement between Fatah and Hamas poses an enormous obstacle to peace. No country can be expected to negotiate with a terrorist organization sworn to its destruction. We will continue to demand that Hamas accept the basic responsibilities of peace: recognizing Israel's right to exist, rejecting violence, and adhering to all existing agreements. And we once again call on Hamas to release Gilad Shalit, who has been kept from his family for five long years."
Meanwhile Honest Reporting observe that whilst Netanyahu's response to Obama was reported in the New York Times as "Netanyahu Responds Icily to Obama remarks", what didn't get that sort of coverage was Abbas' response, his complete rejection of Obama calling the Hamas-Fatah reconciliation an obstacle to peace, saying that after all, "Hamas is a part of Palestinian society".

It's quite frightening how since Abbas joined Hamas he's abandoning any pretence of wanting peace. He is just one step away from openly advocating terror attacks on Israeli civilians.

Sunday, 22 May 2011

Amnesty Hosting Antisemites

Tomorrow Amnesty International in London is hosting a debate called "Complicity in Oppression: Does the Media Aid Israel?", by the pro-Hamas Middle East Monitor Online (MEMO).

MEMO is run by Dr Daud Abdullah, a Hamas supporter who signed the "Istanbul Declaration", which calls for "Resistance against the Jewish Zionist occupation" and attacks on any ships who attempt to block the smuggling of arms to Hamas. MEMO also have articles written by Khalid Amaryeh, including one where he denies that Jews (or, as he calls them, "these pathological liars from Eastern Europe") have any historical connection to the land of Israel. Another MEMO article, by Kathleen Christison discusses "Zionist influence over civil society and policymakers" and, you think she won't go there but she does, "Jewish influence in the economies, the film industries, the media and academia in key Western countries". MEMO also recently published an article by by Skeikh Raed Salah, leader of the Islamic Movement in Israel, who raised money for Hamas and claims that Jews use the blood of gentile children to bake bread.

Michael Weiss's piece in the Telegraph criticises the relationship between Amnesty and MEMO, and asks readers to ask Amnesty why they are hosting an event by an antisemitic organisation.

In response to the piece, Khalid Amaryeh* of MEMO wrote another article comparing Israel to Nazis, which is not only absurd and insulting to the 6 million Jews who were killed, but also, by definition, antisemitic. And in the comments section on Richard Millett's blog post on the issue, he wrote to another commenter, "I don't give a damn whether you are a kike or not".

Naturally, none of the above is the most concerning part of the event. From Harry's Place:
"The speakers at the MEMO / PSC event include Abdel Bari Atwan, who will “dance in Trafalgar Square” if Iran nukes Israel, loves Israelis-are-Nazis abuse, and was a fan of Saddam Hussein; Tim Llewellyn, a freelance Israel hater with quite a taste for antisemitic language; and Victoria Brittain, who has made a career out of promoting some of the worst extremists. Abu Qatada of Al Qaeda, for example, is a victim of 'casual racism'."
Overall, this is not at all surprising from Amnesty. These so-called "human rights" organisations have a long history of controversy and corruption in their links with terrorists, antisemites and their supporters, and singling out Israel for condemnation and unfounded accusations. Recently, Human Rights Watch even took the opportunity when Osama Bin Laden was killed, to criticise "the US and other countries who resort to torture, ill-treatment, and other violations of [terrorists'] basic rights", but later changed this statement, realising that most people probably didn't really appreciate their preaching equivalence of terror victims and the treatment of terrorists.

UPDATE: (23/5/11) *After just last week calling someone a "kike", Amaryeh wrote an article on Hamas' website - more specifically, of their "armed wing".

Also, The Guardian today published a letter from the senior editor of MEMO, and an article by one of the speakers at the debate, Tim Llewellyn, arguing that the BBC is biased towards Israel. (that would be the day!)

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Abbas Goes More Hamas

The Fatah-Hamas reconciliation is not good for anyone who wants peace, as it just means Fatah siding with Hamas, who still want Israel's destruction and refuse to negotiate*. It's not surprising then that the Guardian is fully behind the reconciliation, especially considering that when they released the Palestine Papers in February, they demonstrated that they were actively against the very idea of the Palestinians making any concessions for peace - what the Guardian actually called weakness - and they legitimised Hamas.

But Hamas are not the only problem. In the New York Times op-ed this week, Fatah's leader Abbas wrote an outrageously distorted op-ed, rewriting the history of Israel, and, apart from all Fatah's incitement to terrorism*, the op-ed suddenly makes it so clear why Abbas hasn't negotiated: he's not only in denial about the history of Israel, he lies about his own history.

He wrote that in 1947, after it was proposed that Israel be divided into two states, "Zionist forces expelled Palestinian Arabs... and Arab armies intervened. War and further expulsions ensued... Minutes after the State of Israel was established on May 14, 1948, the United States granted it recognition. Out Palestinian state, however, remains a promise unfulfilled."

Of course he wouldn't mention that the Palestinians rejected the proposal, and that the armies of Egypt, Syria, Iraq and Jordan invaded Israel with the sole intention of killing all the Jews, to get us out of the way. Really, the Nakba is just mourning the failure of finishing the Holocaust.

He claims "we have been negotiating with the State of Israel for 20 years without coming any closer to realizing a state of our own... Negotiations remain our first option".

Again, Abbas ignores the facts - that over the years the Palestinians have refused a 2 state solution seven times, including Abbas himself only in 2008.

Whilst Hamas may be the terrorists, Abbas sure isn't interested in peace either. His issue is with the very existence of Israel, not settlements. He couldn't be more clear about that than if he joined Hamas. Oh, wait.


* And who reiterated that they will never recognise Israel in response to Obama's Middle East speech

Monday, 16 May 2011

Terrorism On Nakba Day

Nakba Day, when the Palestinians mourn the establishment of the State of Israel, kicked off yesterday morning with a terror attack in Tel Aviv. An Arab truck driver deliberately crashed into several cars, shouting "Allahu Akbar". He injured 17 and killed one, a 29 year old recently engaged man, Aviv Morag.

In another incident, in East Jerusalem two Israeli policeman were deliberately run over by a car at a checkpoint.

Two terrorists were arrested as they were caught trying to enter a Jewish settlement, armed with knives, no doubt wanting to carry out an attack similar to that on the Fogel family in March.

Later, thousands of Syrians and Lebanese broke through the borders into Israel and violently rioted against the IDF, injuring some of them. When tear gas and other riot dispersal methods didn't work, the IDF fired warning shots but were finally forced to open fire. About 12 "protestors" were killed overall, some by Lebanese forces, some by mines on their own side of the border.

In other riots around the country, hundreds of Palestinians threw rocks, molotov cocktails, flares, firebombs, burnt tires, damaged the Gaza border and other property, and hid behind ambulances as they launched their attacks.

It is highly likely that Syrian President Assad actively encouraged the invasion to divert attention from his forces' killing of 800 Syrian protestors. Ironically, some of those who entered Israel weren't protesting but were fleeing the danger in Syria. One said:
"I'm tired of living in Syria, we'd rather die than see more bloodshed. We've crossed the border in order to stay with our families, away from all the killing in Syria. We ask the powers that be in Israel to help us stay and not send us back."
Surely there's got to be a smarter option than illegally breaking into a country along with a violent mob of hundreds.

The protests weren't just about commemorating Nakba day though; a while ago hundreds of thousands joined a Facebook group calling for a third intifada - and for Arabs from the surrounding countries to march into Israel, which is exactly what they did.

Around the world, Palestinian supporters held demonstrations in support of a third intifada, including in London where there was also a counter-demo, a pro-Israel, pro-peace rally.

The third intifada demonstration was supported by the "peaceful" BDS, but at the demo itself there was no pretence of peaceful aims. The pro-Palis chanted "victory for the intifada", called for jihad against Israel and for Israel's destruction, waved the flag of the terrorist organisation Hezbollah, and chanted "khyber al-Yahud", which means "slaughter the Jews". Well, at least they were honest!

UPDATE: One Syrian confessed that he was shot in the legs in the Nakba Day protests after he tried to kidnap an Israeli soldier. There were probably other similar incidents. Either way, for only 12 of the hundreds who swarmed into Israel to be killed, whilst attacking soldiers, or by mistakes from their own side,  reflects the extraordinary restraint taken by the IDF.

Monday, 9 May 2011

Israel Memorial Day: Yehi Zichram Baruch

Today is Yom Hazikaron when we remember the 22,867 soldiers who lost their lives defending the state of Israel and the 2,443 civilians who were murdered in terror attacks; 13 in the last year, from a pregnant woman, to a three month old baby, all victims of shootings, stabbings, or rockets.

Netanyahu quoted from the Book of Jeremiah, “Our grief is overwhelming, our hearts ache, where will we find comfort? The prophet said: ‘Refrain your voice from weeping, and your eyes from tears; for their work shall be rewarded.’”

Netanyahu said :
“We shall find solace in building the land and the people, in striving for days of peace, and in our knowledge that their work shall be rewarded and their heroism shall be remunerated”

"If the fallen soldiers were with us today, they would have witnessed countless miracles throughout the years... Those who fell in all these operations, campaigns and wars to protect Israel, would probably be surprised how Israel has turned from a state verging on the desert with only meager resources into one of the most developed, prosperous and advanced countries in the world. My friends, none of this would have happened if not for the young men and women who sacrificed their lives to ensure our existence."

Monday, 2 May 2011

Fatah And Hamas Disagree On Bin Laden

US forces have finally found and killed the world's most wanted terrorist Osama Bin Laden, who was behind 9/11.

Naturally most of the world is rejoicing, but Bin Laden's death seems to be the first surprising hurdle for the potential joint Hamas-Fatah government that was announced last week, who of course can't agree on a joint reaction to this.

A Fatah spokesman said "Getting rid of Bin Laden is good for the cause of peace worldwide", but Hamas leader Ismael Haniyeh mourned Bin Laden, saying "We condemn the assassination and the killing of an Arab holy warrior... We regard this as a continuation of the American policy based on oppression and the shedding of Muslim and Arab blood."

Um, again... we're supposed to try and make peace with the people who want Israel's destruction and worship the terrorist who caused the deaths of thousands of innocent people all over the world?

Honest Reporting point out two things you need to know about Bin Laden and Israel. First, that he hated the West more than he hated Israel, it was not America's support for Israel that drove him.Second, that, Al Qaida like recognition for their actions, and according to Bin Laden's former bodyguard, blaming the Mossad for Al Qaida's terror attacks is "nonsense and an attempt to cast doubt on the ability of the Muslims to do something of this sort."