Saturday, January 24, 2015

How Deep the 'Valley'

The Jerusalem Post has published a story which relays the claim that

Israeli attempts last summer to construct a ramp to the Temple Mount resulted in heightened geopolitical tensions amid allegations of changes to the contested holy site’s status quo, according to a report published Thursday.

These were the findings that were "produced by Emek Shaveh, an organization of archeologists and community activists, who study the role of archeology in the Israeli- Palestinian conflict."

Emek Shaveh is a play on words in that in Hebrew, it usually means to reach a compromise as if reaching a flattening out the valley.  The NGO Emek Shaveh is a politically-oriented activist group.  It has an agenda.

For example, in the story, we read of the Temple Mount's "long-enforced status quo, [which] severely restricting Jewish presence and prayer there."  In other words, Emek Shaveh takes into account a 'built-in' situation of discrimination that is not to be altered or changed.  The Jews must compromise.  Not Arabs.

The story reads more like a press release with 90% of its content originating from Emek Shaveh.  At the end, a Netanyahu statement from the summer is quoted.

Has Emek Shaveh protested the destruction of Jewish antiquities on and under the Temple Mount?  Forcefully?

For Emek Shaveh, they seek to impact the dynamics of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through archaeology:

Our fundamental position is that an archaeological find should not and cannot be used to prove ownership by any one nation, ethnic group or religion over a given place.

Their funding comes from sources quite inimical to Israel's diplomatic stances including

– The Beracha Foundation
– Cordaid
– The Royal Norwegian Embassy Tel-Aviv
– Irish Foreign Ministry
– Oxfam GB

In the past, it has described itself as cooperating with the local Palestinian partner organisation, “Madaa”.

Already two years ago, this organization was red-flagged:
any opposition by ‘Emek Shaveh‘ to the “politicization” of archaeology is, to put it mildly, very selective. In fact, that NGO’s entire raison d’etre is to promote a particular political standpoint through the use of archaeology, as can be seen on its campaigning website and in its contributions to politically motivated campaigns on the subject of Jerusalem.
Yonathan Mizrachi is a central figure in its creation.  He “stopped working for the Israel Antiquities Authority after realizing that his beloved science was being used to glorify Jewish history in the area while diminishing the role of other historical layers” as B’tselem has noted

Already in 2010, he was of the opinion that
The ancient synagogue in Jericho (Na’aran), the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem and other religious structures in the occupied territories should be the responsibility of the local residents,
Anyone who would hand over to the Palestinian Authority sites of Jewish heritage must be either an idiot, a political supporter of the Palestinian cause or a fake devoter to the preservation of archaeological sites.  The reality before 1967 was bad.  And under PA rule, after Joseph's Tomb and other locations, it has grown worse.

In his book, People of the Wall, Mizrachi has written that it offered "some healing to the frustration he felt towards the savage and absurd reality of the wall."  That "wall" is the security barrier that was built in Jerusalem.

The report should have been more critical, should not have taken their viewpoint at face-value, should have asked officials now for their reaction and should have presented the political background of the group.


P.S.    Received these now: this and this.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

So, BBC Was Unfactual All Along

The headline:

BBC strikes deal 

with PBS 

to create 

factual programmes

So, in the past they've all been unfactual programs?


Deadened Thinking

Hezbollah is a Lebanese organization.

It has strong links to Syria.

An Iranian general was killed in the Israeli attack.

So, how is this 'explained' (is there an Arab word for hasbara?)?


According to Walid Charara, a political analyst based in Beirut, the recent targeted attack by Israel on Hezbollah in Syria has now expanded the battle lines between Hezbollah and Israel.

"This action demonstrates that Israel is looking to expand the confrontation between itself and Hezbollah," he told Al Jazeera. "They used to hit the party in Lebanon; now it's doing so in Syria. You can say the front is now open from Naqoura to the Golan Heights and beyond.

"This is a direct attack on Hezbollah members in Syria, so Hezbollah will respond, but when and how, it will be a surprise."

And college/university academics, their pupils, cultural and entertainment icons, and other public figures buy into this thinking.  Even Jim Clancy did, adopting 'hasbara' as an anti-Israel meme.

And what were they doing there if not planning terror ops?

Here is Nasrallah in November last:-

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah on Tuesday warned Israel that it would have to close its airport and seaports in the event of a third Lebanon war, saying its rockets could strike every part of the country.

...“Israelis are saying in the media that they would have to close down Ben-Gurion airport and the Haifa port and yes, that’s true,” Nasrallah said, according to the Daily Star. “You should close all of your airports and your ports because there is no place on the land of occupied Palestine that the resistance’s rockets cannot reach,” he said.

Nasrallah said that Hezbollah's presence in southern Lebanon is strong, and that the group is prepared for a fight. "The deterrent power of our resistance is what is preventing war," he said.

Last week, he said that Israel 'can't imagine' the weapons Hezbollah has

Hezbollah has every weapon Israel can think of, party chief Hasan Nasrallah warned in excerpts of an interview with pan-Arab Al-Mayadeen satellite channel.

“The resistance in Lebanon has everything the enemy can imagine and not imagine,” Nasrallah told Al-Mayadeen’s Ghassan Bin Jeddo...“We have weapons of all types; whatever [weapons] comes to mind,” he added.

Those Israel targeted were not on a picnic.  But the antis can't think that way.

Deadened thinking processes.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Palestinian Segregation and Apartheid

One of the more recent attempts, actually a re-attempt, by pro-Pals. to garner support by fooling others to think that the pro-Pal. cause is parallel to their own struggles for civil and human rights is the "Ferguson=Palestine" meme, which I noted here.

Well, if you view the video clip below, provided by my friend Arnon Segal, you can observe a Jew attempting to quench his thirst at a fountain on the Temple Mount.  A Muslim woman, one of the Mourabitoun ladies, who I call the Wicked Witches of the Waqf, yells, obstructs and then uses violence and pushes him (and then runs away to prevent arrest).  And they continued doing it that day.

That is the real segregation in this part of the world.

Jews cannot drink 'Muslim water'.

Jews cannot coexist with Muslim at a shared holy site, which was a Jewish holy site first (and they even deny the existence of Jewish Temple there in antiquity, which they didn't always do).

Jews cannot purchase "Islamic" land or own property in their state-to-be (or not).

If this is the ideology and political philosophy Afro-Americans want to become enamoured of and support and seek to import Intifada methods into their struggle, they will be in error and probably suffer for it.


Thursday, January 15, 2015

Plot Plot

We have a new 'plot' about a plot of land:-

PA Warns against Jewish Bid to Annex al-Aqsa Mosque

Chairman of the Jerusalem Affairs Department in the PLO, Ahmed Qurei, warned on Wednesday of an Israeli plan to register Muslims’ holy al-Aqsa Mosque as an Israeli state property to be officially run by the so-called Tabu (land registration) office.  The Aqsa Foundation for Endowment and Heritage (AFEH) Foundation notified of Israeli intents to urge the future government to endorse the bid as a means to set the stage for establishing a Jewish synagogue over parts of the holy Mosque.

Queri considered these attempts as...but a reflection of the government’s policies.”

The move comes after the Yishai organization, led by the fanatic rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu, failed to reap the authorities’ approval of a request to enlist al-Aqsa’s overall area as an Israeli state property. Queri said these attempts are aimed at “Judaizing” the Mosque and re-building the alleged Jewish Temple, which Jews say it was destroyed in the pre-Christ era. “This is the most serious [action taken by Israel] that jeopardizes the future of the holy city.”

The Foundation also warned of an Israeli tender to build a Jewish synagogue in the eastern part of the al-Aqsa compound, between the Marwani Masjid and Bab al-Rahma...

I think they should review the material I published here.  I had another site in mind, on the western portion of the Temple Mount precinct:-

Of course, this is a rehash of old claims.  If only they were true and progressing.

But the point is that if Muslims can demand prayer and property rights in a cathedral in Spain

Hundreds of thousands of people have signed a petition to prevent Cordoba's famous cathedral becoming the property of the Catholic Church.  The building was originally a mosque before housing a cathedral in the fifteenth century.

and the parallel with the Temple Mount is most clear here:

Built on the site of a Visigothic church in the 8th century, the mosque was a focal point in Córdoba...When the Christians reconquered it in the 13th century, they built a cathedral in the centre of the mosque.  The site is now under the control of the diocese of Córdoba, which has begun referring to the site as the cathedral rather than the city council-approved name of the Mosque-Cathedral of Córdoba, Andalusia’s minister for tourism Rafael Rodríguez told El País. “Hiding its past as a mosque is like calling the Alhambra the palace of Charles V – it’s absurd.”  Describing that attitude as fundamentalist, the United Left politician said the diocese appeared to be “prioritising religious beliefs over common sense and the natural history of the monument. It doesn’t seem either reasonable or acceptable to me.”

The Temple Mount is a plot of Jewish property, paid for by David (2 Samuel 24:18-25).  The more the Muslims engage in 'Temple Denial',* the more they will lose it all instead of sharing the site.


José Juan Jiménez Güeto, the spokesman for the Mosque-Cathedral said the name was constantly evolving. “We have leaflets that say mosque-cathedral or the other way around. And some that just say cathedral. We’re not denying its history – it was a mosque and now its a cathedral. Nobody is going to deny this.”  He dismissed the regional government concerns, calling it an “artificial debate”. Visitor numbers are up nearly 10% so this year to nearly 1.5 million, with 2014 poised to be a record breaker. “The important thing is that people come from around the world and feel welcomed in this place.”

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Find The Difference

Find the difference between this item

Ferguson Anti-Police Brutality Protesters Take Historic Trip To Palestine

“The goals were primarily to allow for the group members to experience and see first hand the occupation, ethnic cleansing and brutality Israel has levied against Palestinians, but also to build real relationships with those on the ground leading the fight for liberation.”

January 13, 2015 - Recently, a number of representatives from the Dream Defenders, Black Lives Matter and various Ferguson anti-police brutality protesters made history through a solidarity trip to Palestine.  The purpose of last week’s trip was to connect with activists living under Israeli occupation.

The 10-day trip to the occupied Palestinian Territories, specifically in the West Bank, was organized to show a link between oppression emanating from the Israeli State as well as that which victims of police brutality are experiencing in America.
Ahmad Abuznaid, the legal and policy director of the Dream Defenders, as well as the co-organizer of the delegation, explained that the trip was all about making connections, and seeing beyond single-issue causes.

“The goals were primarily to allow for the group members to experience and see first hand the occupation, ethnic cleansing and brutality Israel has levied against Palestinians, but also to build real relationships with those on the ground leading the fight for liberation,” Abuznaid said.  “In the spirit of Malcolm X, Angela Davis, Stokely Carmichael and many others, we thought the connections between the African American leadership of the movement in the US and those on the ground in Palestine needed to be reestablished and fortified.”  Furthermore, he said that the American activists hoped to collaborate and teach organizing and protest strategies that have worked well in the United States, to their Palestinian brothers and sisters.
“As a Palestinian who has learned a great deal about struggle, movement, militancy and liberation from African Americans in the US, I dreamt of the day where I could bring that power back to my people in Palestine. This trip is a part of that process.”
The co-founder of the Black Lives Matter movement, Patrisse Cullors commented that the first thing that came to mind when she saw the divisions between Israelis and Palestinians was apartheid.  “This is an apartheid state. We can’t deny that and if we do deny it we are apart of the Zionist violence. There are two different systems here in occupied Palestine. Two completely different systems. Folks are unable to go to parts of their own country. Folks are barred from their own country.”

Activist Cherrell Brown said there are numerous parallels between the violence perpetrated by the State of Israel against Palestinians and the police violence from the U.S. government which has taken so many African American lives.  “So many parallels exist between how the US polices, incarcerates, and perpetuates violence on the black community and how the Zionist state that exists in Israel perpetuates the same on Palestinians.  “This is not to say there aren’t vast differences and nuances that need to always be named, but our oppressors are literally collaborating together, learning from one another – and as oppressed people we have to do the same,” she concluded.

A complete list of the delegates who made this trip include five Dream Defenders (Phillip Agnew, Ciara Taylor, Steven Pargett, Sherika Shaw, Ahmad Abuznaid); Tef Poe and Tara Thompson from Ferguson/Hands Up United; journalist Marc Lamont Hill, Cherrell Brown and Carmen Perez of Justice League NYC; Charlene Carruthers from the Black Youth Project; as well as poet and artist Aja Monet; Patrisse Cullors of Black Lives Matter; and USC doctoral student Maytha Alhassen.

And this item

Coalition of more than 40 NYC community groups calls on City Council to cancel delegation to IsraelJanuary 12, 2015

A coalition of more than 40 New York City community groups held a press conference outside City Hall on Monday calling for the City Council to cancel a planned delegation to Israel. A diverse group of speakers addressed the city’s progressive politicians, asking how they could reconcile their opposition to racism and state violence at home with support for Israel’s policies against the Palestinians.

Around 50 people gathered in the near-freezing rain for the event, which was introduced by Brandon Davis of Jewish Voice for Peace. Davis denounced the “flagrant disregard for justice” displayed by the delegation, “in our streets” as well as in Palestine. A recurring theme of the remarks that followed was the link between the current movement to end racist policing in U.S. cities and the struggle against Israel’s apartheid in Palestine. Connections were mentioned between the New York Police Department and the Israeli security establishment, including the opening of an NYPD branch in the Sharon District police headquarters at Kfar Saba.

Organizations that have joined the campaign include the Committee Against Anti-Asian Violence, the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, the Direct Action Front for Palestine, and Jews Against Islamophobia. The Council’s nine-day trip, scheduled to begin on February 15, is sponsored by the Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) and the United Jewish Appeal (UJA) Federation of New York.

City Council members participating in the delegation to Israel are Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, Mark Treyger, Brad Lander, Antonio Reynoso, David Greenfield, Rafael Espinal, Darlene Mealy, Mark Levine, Helen Rosenthal, Corey Johnson, Ritchie Torres, Andrew Cohen, Donovan Richards, Eric Ulrich, and James Van Bramer...

Speakers at the press conference wondered how informative such a visit could really be. Would the Council tour the West Bank separation barrier, asked criminal defense attorney Bina Ahmad, or Gaza’s ruined homes and schools? How could those who have taken a stance against domestic discrimination, she demanded to know, go on to contribute to normalizing systematic racism against an entire people — “gross hypocrisy,” in her words. Ahmad, who works with the Legal Aid Society in Staten Island and represented police chokehold victim Eric Garner, analogized Israel’s occupation of Palestine to the NYPD’s presence in communities of color.

Donna Nevel of Jews Against Islamophobia criticized Council members for publicly opposing anti-Muslim discrimination and then visiting Israel under the auspices of the JCRC, which fervently backed Police Comissioner Ray Kelly after the revelation of NYPD spying on Muslim communities. “It is clear that the JCRC has helped undermine the basic civil rights and liberties of our city’s Muslim residents,” according to a letter from the anti-Islamophobia coalition to the Council, “and we hope that you agree with us that it is a most inappropriate organization to lead such a trip.”

Other speakers emphasized the unprogressive nature of a trip that would entail crossing an international picket line. CUNY activist Conor Tomás Reed mentioned labor groups around the world that have heeded Palestinian civil society’s call for a boycott.

My answer:

There is no difference as both represent dangerous, extremist and irrational progressive revolutionary subversionist activity.


Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Breaking the Silence 'Breaks Into' the NYTimes

The Opinion Pages of the New York Times hosted as an OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR someone who write:

That was on January 11 and his name is Moriel Rotheman-Zecher

He's in Facebook and looks like this, sometimes:

He's friends with Avner Gevaryahu

with whom I am also acquainted as I was on a panel with him at last year's Limmud UK but here seen with me at the Haaretz Peace Conference last summer:

More of MRZ's output here.

Moriel is "an American-Israeli writer and activist, born in Jerusalem, raised in Ohio, and back in Jerusalem. He expresses himself on issues of militarism, racism, occupation, violence, justice and peace".  In short, he's breaking the silence, as it were.

Here he is commenting on Silwan in 2012

It is true that in Silwan Israel is acting "within the bounds of Israeli law," but that law is at it's core a racist one, and thus not something deserving of much credit, especially in the context of prolonged occupation of East Jerusalem, recognized as legitimate by virtually no country in the world excluding parts of Israel. This is what Judge Boaz Okun called, in 2005, “legalism without law." 
He's a military service refuser.

With that background you can understand why the NYT would highlight his views and provide him the privilege of publishing in its pages.

And now to his current content:

“...Why are you here?”

“I didn’t want to be part of a system whose main task is the violent occupation of millions of people.”

“In other words: You love Arabs, and don’t care about Israeli security.”

“I think the occupation undermines all of our security, Palestinians’ and Israelis’.”

“You’re betraying your people,” he said.

...Refusal to serve is portrayed by politicians and pundits — many of whom began their careers through service in elite units — as treacherous and marginal...Rarely do more than a few hundred Jewish Israelis publicly refuse to serve each year in protest against Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian territories. The shrill condemnation of refusers is thus an indication of the establishment’s panic.

Panic?  Take note of his use of "aggression" here:
Aggression toward refusers is widespread. When I accompanied a refuser named Udi Segal to his draft station during the Gaza war this summer, we were met by a group draped in Israeli flags and chanting, “Udi, you’re a traitor! Go live in Gaza!” 
If that is "aggression", although I would call that using one's human rights to assemble and protest non-violently, what then can we describe his refusal, that of his friends and his propaganda efforts on its behalf?  could it be assistance to the aggressive actions of Israel's enemies?

Then he gets 'cute':
The reality is that a majority of Israeli citizens do not serve in the military, including Palestinian citizens of Israel, or the “fifth column,” as they are often branded, and the ultra-Orthodox, or “leeches,” as they’ve been called.
First of all, he would perhaps be among the first to protest enlistment of Arabs (note, too, his use of 'Palestinian citizens', as if there's a country or political entity so-named) as they would be forced to engage in actions against their fellow nationals.  As for the Haredim,

MRZ attempts to position himself as a moderate:
The reasons for not serving may differ between a Palestinian youth from Acre and a Haredi from Beit Shemesh, between an 8200 veteran and an Ethiopian immigrant, between me and the deserter in Military Jail No. 6, but there is a deeper consensus: We all refuse to see the government as a moral guide and military service as sacrosanct. As the Israeli government leads us further from peace, and the army faithfully executes its violent orders, this is the kind of treachery we need most.
I don't think he would accept my analysis that the ability to make peace or at least, negotiate a peace arrangement, is nigh impossible. that is his prerogative. But to assume that undercutting and subverting Israel's ability to defend itself, to protect its citizens from terror is horrific.  He knows that if there is but the smallest chance to save a Jewish life then the IDF is to be elevated not only as a civic duty but a religious one as well.

The article, by the way, was poorly constructed and the sole reason the NYT published it is its unrelenting anti-Jewish state campaign.


Monday, January 12, 2015

Does Haaretz Promote Zionism?

At the web site of HaAretz, you can read that while it notes its Zionist background, it describes itself, now so:

Haaretz is an independent daily newspaper with a broadly liberal outlook both on domestic issues and on international affairs.

To understand that clearly, read this by one of its senior columnists

 Call for French aliyah: Fulfillment of Zionism or capitulation to terrorism?
Encouraging mass Jewish emigration would help terrorist fanatics finish the job started by the Nazis and their Vichy collaborators: making France Judenrein.
By Chemi Shalev | Jan. 11, 2015 
...Nonetheless, this instinctive reaction – perhaps Pavlovian is a better word – should give reason for pause and discomfort, even among the most ardent of Zionists. Because whether French Jews answer these calls by emigrating to Israel or whether they simply take the advice in principle and go somewhere else, in some ways this campaign is no more than blatant capitulation to terror... the concerted call for French Jews to leave their country, issued by most Israeli leaders only a few short hours after four innocent Jews were murdered in the kosher supermarket near Paris’ Vincennes neighborhood, there was an undeniable element of stabbing a beleaguered sister democracy in the back at its time of dire need...
...Israel has no interest in promoting the eradication of over two millennia of Jewish presence in Europe....There is nothing wrong with Israel promoting emigration, preferably out of choice and not out of fear, but this week was not the right time for such a campaign: the government should have seized the opportunity to strengthen the Jewish community in France, rather than weaken it.

What do you think?