Archive | April 11th, 2010

IRAN: WORLD MEDIA

NOVANEWS

Iran To Complain To UN Over US Nuclear Policy

Iran has said it will complain to the UN over its exclusion from Washington’s revised nuclear policy, while the US has claimed Iran does not yet have nuclear capacity. More »

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BYRNE: YOUR SECOND DIVISION MP

NOVANEWS

Minister’s Jokey Note Caught On Camera

 

SkyNews © Sky News 2010         

Ministers have been caught out passing flippant notes dismissing journalists as “second division” during a news conference about children’s services. Skip related content

Work and Pensions Secretary Yvette Cooper was snapped writing the remarks to Treasury Minister Liam Byrne while her husband, Schools Secretary Ed Balls, spoke to the assembled media.

“It’s clearly second division today, presumably that’s why we’re allowed to do this,” she wrote.

Mr Byrne replied: “Sort of like being allowed to play in the sand pit.”

The three Ministers held the event to promote their commitment to protecting children’s services but also attacked the Conservatives’ plans for a marriage tax break worth £3 a week.

Just four days into the General Election campaign, it seems energy-levels are already beginning to flag – reporters asked just three or four questions at the news conference and it finished early.

A party spokesman for Mr Balls made light of the event and joked about the Minister’s support of Norwich City football club.

“Ed would like to point out to Yvette, Liam and everyone else, as a fan of the team at the top of the third tier of English football, that there is nothing wrong with the second division,” he told the Daily Mail.

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SECRET ARREST AND IMPRISONMENT OF A JOURNALIST

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Secret Arrest and Imprisonment of Israeli Journalist, Anat Kamm



Jailed For Revealing Israeli Army Death Squads and Assassination Policy
Courtesy of the Only Democracy in the Middle East
As in South Africa, so too in Israel. The price of maintaining police state repression of the Palestinians in the Occupied Territories and an attitude to Israel’s own Arab citizens that they are a fifth column, is that even the democratic rights of the Jews in the Jewish State become undermined.

Not the rights of the expansionists and Zionist race purists and demographic prophets, but that of left-wing Israelis. This has been thrown into sharp relief by the case of Anat Kamm and Uri Blau, two journalists on the liberal daily Ha’aretz.

Now there are many propagandists (hasbara merchants) who repeat by rote the phrase that Israel is ‘the only democracy in the Middle East.’ If course ‘democracy’ has always had an elastic definition. After all Hitler was ‘democratically’ elected. Arabs are guest citizens of Israeli democracy.

Hamas’s election as the majority party in the Palestinian legislature was ‘democratically’ reverse by the democracies, Israel and the United States. Israel is ‘democratic’ because the Zionist militias first expelled 80% of the Palestinian population! And of course the USA went into Iraq to restore ‘democracy’. Democracy has always been the fig-leaf under which repression and dictatorship have traditionally hidden.

So, no doubt the secret arrest and imprisonment of a Ha’aretz journalist, Anat Kamm, was also democratically agreed, by judges who had previously been part of the military and security establishment. The other journalist Uri Blau fled to Britain. Most undemocratically you might think! But then, as you will no doubt say, they are being anti-semitic accused of treason, the only offence for which hanging was not abolished in Britain in 1964. Of course, you will say, exceptional measures have to be taken in cases where national security is at stake.

Presumably these 2 renegade journalists had tried to sell information to some unnamed Arab power which, as a result, would be able to invade or destroy Israel? Well not quite.

What happened was that Ms Kamm had allegedly photocopied hundreds of documents that detailed massive illegality, including murder, by the Israeli army. In defiance of previous court decisions and promises, the Israeli army had continued with a policy of assassinating its opponents, as per Dubai, operating death squads in the Occupied Territories.

At the same time the Israeli army was lying when it denied any such thing (the Israeli army never tells the truth when a lie will suffice!). It is this, an action which would normally border on the heroic, which has meant secret arrests and detention and trial. And now, apparently, Israel’s Secret Service, Shin Bet, is threatening to take the gloves off!

Not only was the arrest and imprisonment of Anat Kamm secret, but any mention of a court order forbidding mention of her was also a secret! What was that about the ‘only democracy in the Middle East’?

Tony Greenstein
See also: Richard Silverstein, Media Monitors, Jonathan Cook, Ha’aretz,

Blau-Kamm case exposes the dark underbelly of Israel’s security state
Jonathan Cook, April 9, 2010

What is misleadingly being called in Israel the “Anat Kamm espionage affair” is quickly revealing the dark underbelly of a nation that has worshipped for decades at the altar of a security state.

Next week 23-year-old Kamm is due to stand trial for her life — or rather the state’s demand that she serve a life sentence for passing secret documents to an Israeli reporter, Uri Blau, of the liberal Haaretz daily. She is charged with spying.

Blau himself is in hiding in London, facing, if not a Mossad hit squad, at least the stringent efforts of Israel’s security services to get him back to Israel over the opposition of his editors, who fear he will be put away too.

This episode has been dragging on behind the scenes for months, since at least December, when Kamm was placed under house arrest pending the trial.

Not a word about the case leaked in Israel until this week when the security services, who had won from the courts a blanket gag order — a gag on the gag, so to speak — were forced to reverse course when foreign bloggers began making the restrictions futile [including notably Richard Silverstein]. Hebrew pages on Facebook had already laid out the bare bones of the story.
So, now that much of the case is out in the light, what are the crimes supposedly committed by Kamm and Blau?

During her conscription, Kamm is said to have copied possibly hundreds of army documents that revealed systematic law-breaking by the Israeli high command operating in the occupied Palestinian territories, including orders to ignore court rulings. She was working at the time in the office of Brig Gen Yair Naveh, who is in charge of operations in the West Bank.

Blau’s crime is that he published a series of scoops based on her leaked information that have highly embarrassed senior Israeli officers by showing their contempt for the rule of law.

His reports included revelations that the senior command had approved targeting Palestinian bystanders during the military’s extra-judicial assassinations in the occupied territories; that, in violation of a commitment to the high court, the army had issued orders to execute wanted Palestinians even if they could be safely apprehended; and that the defence ministry had a compiled a secret report showing that the great majority of settlements in the West Bank were illegal even under Israeli law (all are illegal in international law).

In a properly democratic country, Kamm would have an honorable defence against the charges, of being a whistle-blower rather than a spy, and Blau would be winning journalism prizes not huddling away in exile.

But this is Israel. Here, despite a desperate last-stand for the principles of free speech and the rule of law in the pages of the Haaretz newspaper today, which is itself in the firing line over its role, there is almost no public sympathy for Kamm or even Blau.

The pair are already being described, both by officials and in chat forums and talkback columns, as traitors who should be jailed, disappeared or executed for the crime of endangering the state.

The telling comparison being made is to Mordechai Vanunu, the former technician at the Dimona nuclear plant who exposed Israel’s secret nuclear arsenal. Inside Israel, he is universally reviled to this day, having spent nearly two decades in harsh confinement. He is still under a loose house arrest, denied the chance to leave the country.

Blau and Kamm have every reason to be worried they may share a similar fate. Yuval Diskin, the head of the Shin Bet, Israel’s secret police, which has been leading the investigation, said yesterday that they had been too “sensitive to the media world” in pursuing the case for so long and that the Shin Bet would now “remove its gloves”.

Maybe that explains why Kamm’s home address was still visible on the charge sheet published yesterday, putting her life in danger from one of those crazed talkbackers.

It certainly echoes warnings we have had before from the Shin Bet about how it operates.

Much like Blau, Azmi Bishara, once head of a leading Arab party in Israel, is today living in exile after the Shin Bet put him in their sights. He had been campaigning for democratic reforms that would make Israel a “state of all its citizens” rather than a Jewish state.

While Bishara was abroad in 2007, the Shin Bet announced that he would be put on trial for treason when he returned, supposedly because he had had contacts with Hizbullah during Israel’s attack on Lebanon in 2006.

Few experts believe Bishara could have had any useful information for Hizbullah, but the Shin Bet’s goals and modus operandi were revealed later by Diskin in a letter on its attitude to Bishara and his democratisation campaign.

The Shin Bet was there, he said, to thwart the activities of groups or individuals who threatened the state’s Jewish character “even if such activity is sanctioned by the law”.

Diskin called this the principle of “a democracy defending itself” when it was really a case of Jewish leaders in a state based on Jewish privilege protecting those privileges. This time it is about the leaders of Israel’s massive security industry protecting their privileges in a security state by silencing witnesses to their crimes and keeping ordinary citizens in ignorance.

Justifying his decision to “take the gloves off” in the case of Kamm and Blau, Diskin said: “It is a dream of every enemy state to get its hands on these kinds of documents” — that is, documents proving that the Israeli army has repeatedly broken the country’s laws, in addition, of course, to its systematic violations of international law.

Diskin claims that national security has been put at risk, even though the reports Blau based on the documents — and even the documents themselves — were presented to, and approved by, the military censor for publication. The censor can restrict publication based only on national security concerns, unlike Diskin, the army senior command and the government, who obey other kinds of concerns.

Diskin knows there is every chance he will get away with his ploy because of a brainwashed Israeli public, a largely patriotic media and a supine judiciary.

The two judges who oversaw the months of gagging orders to silence any press discussion of this case did so on the say-so of the Shin Bet that there were vital national security issues at stake. Both judges are stalwarts of Israel’s enormous security industry.

Einat Ron was appointed a civilian judge in 2007 after working her way up the ranks of the military legal establishment, there to give a legal gloss to the occupation. Notoriously in 2003, when she was the chief military prosecutor, she secretly proposed various fabrications to the army so that it could cover up the killing of an 11-year-old Palestinian boy, Khalil al-Mughrabi, two years earlier. Her role only came to light because a secret report into the boy’s death was mistakenly attached to the army’s letter to an Israeli human rights group.

The other judge is Ze’ev Hammer, who finally overturned the gag order this week — but only after a former supreme court judge, Dalia Dorner, now the head of Israel’s Press Council, belatedly heaped scorn on it. She argued that, with so much discussion of the case outside Israel, the world was getting the impression that Israel flouted democratic norms.

Judge Hammer has his own distinguished place in Israel’s security industry, according to Israeli analyst Dimi Reider. During his eight years of legal study, Hammer worked for both the Shin Bet and Israel’s Mossad spy agency.

Judge Hammer and Judge Ron are deeply implicated in the same criminal outfit — the Israeli security establishment — that is now trying to cover up the tracks that lead directly to its door. Kamm is doubtless wondering what similar vested interests the judges who hear her case next week will not be declaring.

Writing in Haaretz today, Blau said he had been warned “that if I return to Israel I could be silenced for ever, and that I would be charged for crimes related to espionage”. He concluded that “this isn’t only a war for my personal freedom but for Israel’s image”.

He should leave worrying about Israel’s image to Netanyahu, Diskin and judges like Dorner. That was why the gag order was enforced in the first place. This is not a battle for Israel’s image; it’s a battle for what is left of its soul.

Posted by Tony Greenstein at:

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STEPHEN SHALON NEW BOOK

NOVANEWS

This is a small segment from a new book, edited by Stephen R. Shalom.

Racheli.
 
IOA Editor: An illuminating exchange between Noam Chomsky and Gilbert Achcar on the  important question of the legitimacy of the state, and how it applies to Israel and other nation states.  Presented in the context of the current wave of accusations that critics of the Israeli occupation, and of Israel’s systematic and ongoing violations of international law, are  “delegitimizers” — a recently coined term created by Israeli propaganda experts as part of an effort to, in their words, “delegitimize the delegitimizers.”
An excerpt from Noam Chomsky and Gilbert Achcar, Perilous
 
Power: The Middle East and U.S. Foreign Policy. Dialogues on Terror, Democracy, War, and Justiceedited by Stephen R. Shalom (expanded edition), Boulder, CO: Paradigm Publishers, 2009, pp. 143-148.  (Footnotes have been removed from the excerpt.)
The book of extended conversations between these two leading progressive political analysts is available from the publisher at:

Shalom: There has been much debate regarding the legitimacy of the Israeli state. To what extent is Israel a legitimate, or an illegitimate, state?

Chomsky: I don’t think that the notion of legitimacy of a state means very much. Is the United States a legitimate state? It’s based on genocide; it conquered half of Mexico. What makes it legitimate? The way the international system is set up, states have certain rights; that has nothing to do with their legitimacy. Every state you can think of is based on violence, repression, expulsion, and all sorts of crimes. And the state system itself has no inherent legitimacy. It’s just an institutional form that developed and that was imposed with plenty of violence. The question of legitimacy just doesn’t arise. There is an international order in which it is essentially agreed that states have certain rights, but that provides them with no legitimacy, Israel or anyone else.
 
Achcar: We could put the question in another way. If one tries to define the origins of the Israeli state, the formula that comes to mind is the title of a famous piece by Maxime
Rodinson, Israel: A Colonial-Settler State? It points to a fact that is built into the history of the state; of course, one could say the same of many states. (Chomsky: Most.)
But then you have the factor of time: Israel is a very recent colonial-settler state, and it is based on the expulsion of the original inhabitants of Palestine, not on genocide like the United States. Ironically, states based on genocide are in a more comfortable position.
Not from the moral point of view, of course, but from the political point of view, in terms of the existence of a challenge to their legitimacy. In the case of expulsion, those expelled continue to challenge the state’s legitimacy; in the case of genocide, those who might be challengers have been wiped out.
And to be sure, all states are based on violence, but cases like the apartheid state in South Africa, or Algeria at the time of French  domination, cannot be put in the same category as, let’s say, states that are not or are no longer contested in their legitimacy. So the fact is that Israel is confronted with vehement questioning of its legitimacy, of its “right to exist”: Most Arabs are ready to recognize it de facto, as a fact, but not de jure, by right.
 
Chomsky: The notion of “right to exist” appears to have been invented by advocates of U.S.-Israeli rejectionism. And it’s interesting the way it has spread. This notion doesn’t exist in international law. No state has a right to exist. So Mexicans don’t accept the right of the United States to exist, sitting on half of Mexico.
They recognize the United States, they recognize the right of the United States to live in peace and security within recognized borders, but they don’t recognize the right of the United States to exist, nor should they. Nor do the Hopi Indians. They recognize the United States, but not its right to exist.
I have never seen a careful study, but as far as I can tell, the notion of “right to exist” was developed in the 1970s, at the point where the major Arab states, with the tacit support of the PLO ,  accepted that Israel had a “right to live in peace within secure and recognized boundaries”—the wording of UN Security Council Resolution 242 adopted in the aftermath of the June 1967 war, incorporated in a UN Security Council resolution vetoed by the United States in January 1976.
In order to raise the barriers, to prevent negotiation and settlement from proceeding, U.S. and Israeli propaganda elevated the demand, from a right that holds for all states—“to live in peace within secure and recognized boundaries”—to the “right to exist.” So the new barrier was that unless Palestinians accepted the right of Israel to exist—that is, the legitimacy of their dispossession and expulsion—then they couldn’t be accepted as negotiating partners. 
As far as I can tell, that was just a way to prevent negotiations, at a time when the United States and Israel were becoming almost totally isolated internationally in their refusal to proceed with implementing a very broad international consensus on a two-state settlement.
I don’t think we should accept that notion; that’s a propaganda notion. No state has a right to exist, and no one has any reason to accept the right to exist. States are what they are. None of them have any inherent legitimacy. You’re right, they differ; they have many different dimensions. So apartheid South Africa was illegitimate in a particular ugly sense.
Is it legitimate now? Apartheid is over, but for the same 80 percent of the Black population, maybe the situation is worse than it was before, after the neoliberal measures were instituted in South Africa. Is that a legitimate state? You’re quite right that Israel is close to unique in one sense—namely that it was established after the contemporary international order was formed in 1945.
Israel became a state in 1948, like India and Pakistan, so it’s one of those few states that was established after the current international order was established. That imposes an extra problematic element—the same with India. Why should India be sitting on Kashmir, for example? Kashmiris don’t want it; it was because the Maharaja happened to make that decision against the will of the population, and they’re holding it by violence.
They won’t allow a referendum, which the United Nations demanded. The Indian special forces, the Rashtriya Rifles, carry out terrible atrocities. They faked the elections, which led to a lot of violence that still goes on. There’s an element of illegitimacy.
 
Achcar: I think there are different levels that are being mixed here. Of course, no state on earth is a state where you have social equality. That’s entirely obvious. So what you said about South Africa could apply to the United States or any other state. (Chomsky: But there are extremes.) There are extremes, of course, but we are speaking here of a different level.
You have states that, for the overwhelming majority of their population, are considered to be their state, and you don’t have a problem. But then you have situations that are part of the colonial legacy, created by force and rejected by majorities of the populations concerned.
 
Kashmir, Kurdistan, and the rest are situations that are illegitimate in that sense, where the majority concerned do not consider themselves represented in the existing state structure.
 
Chomsky: We can go on. Take Turkey, after the expulsion of Greeks.  The Greeks don’t accept that, even to this day. There’s no legitimacy to it; it’s just been settled by various
arrangements of force. Israel is unusual in that it was established a little later than the others, but it’s very similar in character. And the United States is maybe the most extreme example.
Almost the entire population was either exterminated or driven out of their lands. And then it’s sitting on half of another country. The only reason it didn’t conquer Canada was because the British deterrent was too strong. I simply don’t think that the question of legitimacy of a state can seriously be raised. They’re all illegitimate.
 
Achcar: Yes, but once again, it depends on what you mean by that. In the case of Israel, you have a situation where the overwhelming majority—more than 80 percent—of the original Arab Palestinian population of that territory had been expelled in 1948.
 
Chomsky: What would the original population of the current United States think?
 
Achcar: I said from the start that states based on effective genocide are, in a way, in a more comfortable situation, because they don’t have any massive population contesting their existence or legitimacy.
In the case of the Israeli state, on the other hand, you have a population that is at least as numerous as the settler-dominant one, and is claiming a right to the same territory, which it sees as having been usurped. As long as there is no solution that is acceptable to this population, you have a problem with legitimacy.
If this population agrees that the state, although stemming from historical injustice and oppression, should nevertheless be accepted as an established fact, in the context of some settlement, then the problem is solved. But, as long as you don’t have that, you have a problem of legitimacy—in the very formal democratic sense of the term.
 
Chomsky: As long as something is contested, it’s contested, I agree. So Sri Lanka is seriously contested. India is seriously contested. Alsace-Lorraine is no longer contested because both sides recognize that the next time they contest it, they’ll wipe out the world.
In the case of Israel, it’s mostly accepted even by the Palestinians. But until it’s totally accepted, yes, it’ll be contested. That’s a different dimension than the question of legitimacy. The fact that some people have given up doesn’t make it legitimate.
 
Achcar: No. Legitimacy is based on consent. Legitimacy is the consent of the majority. And the consent of the majority defines legitimacy, at least in political philosophy and democratic constitutional law. And a state is legitimate when it is based on the consent of the majority of its rightful population.
Now, again, the problem of the Israeli state is that the bulk of the Palestinian population has been expelled and deprived of rights since 1948. So if we consider that these people have rights on the territory from which they have been expelled, then one cannot say that the Israeli state is based on the consent of the majority of its rightful population.
 
Chomsky: Let’s drop the word “legitimacy.” “Legitimacy” has quite a different meaning in international affairs. You should just say, straight out, that the original indigenous population of the land on which Israel was established does not accept the legitimacy of their expulsion legitimate.
You could say the same about many other states. People may accept it, but they don’t accept its legitimacy. I don’t know what would happen if you took a poll in Alsace-Lorraine, for example, about whether people would accept the legitimacy of the solution.
They’d say, okay, that’s the way it worked out. They may think it’s legitimate; they may not. If you went to a Native American Hopi reservation, they certainly wouldn’t regard the United States as legitimate, but they accept it.
 
Achcar: If even they accept it, then it is legitimate.
 
Chomsky: Fine. But insofar as the Palestinians have any organized voice, they accepted Israel a long time ago. They backed the 1976 UN resolution (vetoed by the United States) that called for a two-state settlement. In 1988, the Palestinian National Council formally accepted such a settlement.
But I don’t think that confers any legitimacy on Israel, any more than any other arrangement confers legitimacy on a state. But as far as acceptance is concerned, yes, they accepted it, though of course there are things that are contested, like the right of return, or the borders and so on.
Take the negotiations at Taba, for example, in January 2001. They didn’t reach an agreement, but they came very close. As a matter of fact, at the final press conference the negotiators said, we have never been this close to an agreement, and if we could continue a little longer, we’d probably reach an agreement.
That agreement, had it been reached, would have amounted to acceptance by the only organized administrative structure within the Palestinian world. Would that have made Israel legitimate?
No. Any more than the United States, or France, or India, or Sri Lanka—go through the list—is legitimate.
 
Achcar: I think we cannot apply double standards here. We cannot blame European governments, the U.S. government, and others for disregarding the opinion of their populations on the issue of the Iraq war, and approve as the authoritative voice of the Palestinian people the decision by what is the equivalent of a government of the Palestinians, disregarding the opinion of the people.
 
Chomsky: So you’re now saying the Palestinian Authority is illegitimate?
 
Achcar: No, what I’m saying is that no agreement could be considered legitimate if it is not based on consultation with the Palestinian population by some kind of referendum. It needs to be approved by the majority of the oppressed Palestinian population

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WAS POLISH PRESIDENT MURDERED ?

NOVANEWS 

Zionist were upset that President Kaczynski had “anti-Semites” in his ruling coalition.

by James Buchanan

The arch-criminal Franklin Delano Roosevelt once said “In politics, nothing happens by accident. If it happens, you can bet it was planned that way.” So what do you say when a good portion of a European government is wiped out in a single plane crash?

Commercial jets land in bad weather all the time. Thousands of jets land all over the world safely in poor visibility, yet this one plane with the Polish President and many high ranking Polish officials smashes into the ground. Be very suspicious of media attempts to blame the weather or to blame the pilot.

Remember Bill Clinton’s Commerce Secretary, Ron Brown? He was being investigated for campaign finance fraud. He died in a highly convenient plane crash near the Dubrovnik airport shortly after threatening the Clintons that he would not go down for those fraud charges alone.

It’s suspected that a false landing beacon signal was set up in some nearby hills causing Air Force 2 to crash into those hills during poor visibility. A detailed account of suspicious circumstances surrounding Ron Brown’s death can be read here.

Whenever politicians die “accidentally”, it’s worthwhile to see if the deceased politicians had been doing anything that may have angered the Jews or the New World Order, which in Europe takes the form of the European Union (EU), whose main goals include forcing all European nations under its control to have a single currency and to allow an unlimited flood of immigrants from the Third World.

The safety record of the Tupolev-154 has been questioned, but virtually all the crashes were by Third World airlines or over remote parts of Siberia. The first loss of a Tu-154 operated by Poland was the one that the Polish president and a good part of the Polish government was on. This same Tu-154 just had a major inspection and overhaul in December 2009.

One article notes “In one of those rare moments of unity, the National Bank of Poland and the Polish government agreed on the need to weaken the Polish zloty, which over recent weeks has rebounded close to its pre-crisis strength. The currency’s strength is now seen a possible threat to economic recovery. After several verbal interventions over the past few days, the central bank intervened with real money Friday, for the first time in more than a decade.

The bank followed through on its Thursday warnings that it is ‘technologically and psychologically’ prepared to enter the currency market to prevent ‘excessive strengthening of the zloty.’ Government officials also said earlier this week that the ’strong zloty’ is damaging growth and, after Friday’s intervention, said they fully back the central bank’s move.

In moving to weaken the zloty, Poland’s leadership was placing the interests of the people of Poland ahead of the interests of the European collective known as the European Union. Then, the next day, the president of Poland dies in a plane crash along with numerous other top leaders, including the president of the National Bank.”

The trip to Smolensk was to honor the memory of Polish POWs murdered by the Communists during World War Two. The Jews don’t like any “competition” to their Holocaust. The Jews want to pretend that they are the world’s ultimate victims and deserving of the world’s eternal sympathy, which invariably includes a ban on all criticism of the Jews or Israel. Kaczynski was not only throwing a spotlight on a mass murder by Communists; he was throwing a spotlight on a mass murder by Communist Jews.

Jews played a key role in Communism, and Jews were often the commissars who were shooting defenseless dissidents and POWs. President Kaczynski had promised to go after Communist murderers, who had killed Poles during the long Communist occupation. Many of those war criminals were Jews, some of whom are still living in Israel or the United States.

Curiously, the Polish Prime Minister (in exile) in 1943 was killed in a suspicious plane crash after he learned of the Communist mass murder at Katyn and began raising concerns that threatened the alliance between the Communists and the capitalists.

Meanwhile, Polish troops were fighting on the Western front for the Allies. The nation of Poland was completely sold out by FDR and Churchill at Yalta to an indefinite occupation by the same Communists, who mass murdered Polish POWs.

An article from the Jewish Telegraph reports “Jews mixed on new Polish leader– The new president of Poland was elected with the backing of anti-Semitic supporters. But not all Polish Jewish officials believe Lech Kaczynski, who will take office in December, should be criticized for his extremist bedfellows, especially considering his record on Jewish issues. Kaczynski, the former mayor of Warsaw, was elected last month to replace President Aleksander Kwasniewski. Barred from running again under Poland electoral law, Kwasniewski is popular with Jews inside and outside Poland.

The incoming president’s Catholic-oriented Law and Justice Party governs Poland in coalition with two extremist parties, Self-Defense and the League of Polish Families, ‘whose members have frequently expressed anti-Semitic sentiments,’ according to Tel Aviv University’s Stephen Roth Institute, which monitors attitudes toward Jews around the world.”

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