Archive | July 12th, 2018

Understanding the US/NATO Profit-Driven Military Agenda

Towards a World War III Scenario: The Dangers of Nuclear War

by Michel Chossudovsky

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The US has embarked on a military adventure, “a long war”, which threatens the future of humanity. US/NATO weapons of mass destruction are portrayed as instruments of peace. Mini-nukes are said to be “harmless to the surrounding civilian population”. Pre-emptive nuclear war is portrayed as a “humanitarian undertaking”.

While one can conceptualize the loss of life and destruction resulting from present-day wars including Syria and Yemen, it is impossible to fully comprehend the devastation which might result from a Third World War, using “new technologies” and advanced weapons, until it occurs and becomes a reality. The international community has endorsed nuclear war in the name of world peace. “Making the world safer” is the justification for launching a military operation which could potentially result in a nuclear holocaust.

Nuclear war has become a multi-billion dollar undertaking, which fills the pockets of US defense contractors. What is at stake is the outright “privatization of nuclear war”.

The Pentagon’s global military design is one of world conquest. The military deployment of US/NATO forces is occurring in several regions of the world simultaneously.

Central to an understanding of war, is the media campaign which grants it legitimacy in the eyes of public opinion. A good versus evil dichotomy prevails. The perpetrators of war are presented as the victims. Public opinion is misled.

Breaking the “big lie”, which upholds war as a humanitarian undertaking, means breaking a criminal project of global destruction, in which the quest for profit is the overriding force. This profit-driven military agenda destroys human values and transforms people into unconscious zombies.

Excerpt by author Michel Chossudovsky:

“The object of this book is to forcefully reverse the tide of war, challenge the war criminals in high office and the powerful corporate lobby groups which support them.

Break the American Inquisition.

Undermine the US-NATO-Israel military crusade.

Close down the weapons factories and the military bases.

Members of the armed forces should disobey orders and refuse to participate in a criminal war.

Bring home the troops.”


Towards a World War III Scenario: The Dangers of Nuclear War
by Michel Chossudovsky

ISBN: 978-0-9737147-5-3 | Year: 2012 | Pages: 102

Available to order in print AND pdf formats!

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Reviews

“This book is a ‘must’ resource – a richly documented and systematic diagnosis of the supremely pathological geo-strategic planning of US wars since ‘9-11’ against non-nuclear countries to seize their oil fields and resources under cover of ‘freedom and democracy’.”
John McMurtry, Professor of Philosophy, Guelph University

“In a world where engineered, pre-emptive, or more fashionably “humanitarian” wars of aggression have become the norm, this challenging book may be our final wake-up call.”
-Denis Halliday, Former Assistant Secretary General of the United Nations

Michel Chossudovsky exposes the insanity of our privatized war machine. Iran is being targeted with nuclear weapons as part of a war agenda built on distortions and lies for the purpose of private profit. The real aims are oil, financial hegemony and global control. The price could be nuclear holocaust. When weapons become the hottest export of the world’s only superpower, and diplomats work as salesmen for the defense industry, the whole world is recklessly endangered. If we must have a military, it belongs entirely in the public sector. No one should profit from mass death and destruction.
Ellen Brown, author of ‘Web of Debt’ and president of the Public Banking Institute

DETAILED TABLE OF CONTENTS

PREFACE

A New War Theater in North Africa
Operation Odyssey Dawn
Nuclear Weapons against Libya? How Real is the Threat?
America’s Long War: The Global Military Agenda
How to Reverse the Tide of War
World War III Scenario
Acknowledgments

CHAPTER I: INTRODUCTION

The Cult of Killing and Destruction
America’s Mini-nukes
War and the Economic Crisis
Real versus Fake Crises

CHAPTER II: THE DANGERS OF NUCLEAR WAR

Hiroshima Day 2003: Secret Meeting at Strategic Command Headquarters
The Privatization of Nuclear War: US Military Contractors Set the Stage
9/11 Military Doctrine: Nuclear Weapons and the “Global War on Terrorism”
Al Qaeda: “Upcoming Nuclear Power”
Obama’s Nuclear Doctrine: The 2010 Nuclear Posture Review
Post 9/11 Nuclear Doctrine
“Defensive” and “Offensive” Actions
“Integration” of Nuclear and Conventional Weapons Plans
Theater Nuclear Operations (TNO)
Planned Aerial Attacks on Iran
Global Warfare: The Role of US Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM)
Nuclear Weapons Deployment Authorization
Israel’s Stockpiling of Conventional and Nuclear Weapons
The Role of Western Europe
Germany: De Facto Nuclear Power
Pre-emptive Nuclear War: NATO’s 2010 Strategic Concept
The World is at a Critical Crossroads

CHAPTER III: AMERICA’S HOLY CRUSADE AND THE BATTLE FOR OIL

America’s Crusade in Central Asia and the Middle East
“Homegrown Terrorists”
The American Inquisition
Washington’s Extrajudicial Assassination Program
The Battle for Oil
The Oil Lies in Muslim Lands
Globalization and the Conquest of the World’s Energy Resources

CHAPTER IV: PREPARING FOR WORLD WAR THREE

Media Disinformation
A “Pre-emptive” Aerial Attack Directed Against Iran would Lead to Escalation
Global Warfare
US “Military Aid”
The Timetable of Military Stockpiling and Deployment
World War III Scenario
The United Nations Security Council
The American Inquisition: Building a Political Consensus for War

CHAPTER V: TARGETING IRAN WITH NUCLEAR WEAPONS

Building a Pretext for a Pre-emptive Nuclear Attack
“Theater Iran Near Term”
The Military Road Map: “First Iraq, then Iran”
Simulated Scenarios of a Global War: The Vigilant Shield 07 War Games
The Role of Israel
Cheney: “Israel Might Do it Without Being Asked”
US Israel Military Coordination
Tactical Nuclear Weapons directed against Iran
Radioactive Fallout
“The Mother of All Bombs” (MOAB) Slated to be Used Against Iran
Extensive Destruction of Iran’s Infrastructure
State of the Art Weaponry: “War Made Possible Through New Technologies”
Electromagnetic Weapons
Iran’s Military Capabilities: Medium and Long Range Missiles
Iran’s Ground Forces
US Military and Allied Facilities Surrounding Iran

CHAPTER VI: REVERSING THE TIDE OF WAR

Revealing the Lie
The Existing Anti-War Movement
Manufacturing Dissent
Jus ad Bellum: 9/11 and the Invasions of Yugoslavia and Afghanistan
Fake Antiwar Activism: Heralding Iran as a Nuclear Threat
The Road Ahead
The Antiwar Movement within the State Structure and the Military
Abandon the Battlefield: Refuse to Fight
The Broader Peace Process
What has to be Achieved

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German Parliament: US Presence in Syria Is Illegal

NOVANEWS

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Featured image: Alexander Neu

Members of Parliament in Germany have concluded that the presence of the United States military in Syria is illegal. 

Alexander Neu, a Member of Parliament for the Left Party in Germany, requested an opinion on the legality of the military presence and operations by U.S., Russia and Israel in Syria.

Moonofalabama.org reports: The result (pdf, in German) is quite clear-cut:

Russia was asked by the recognized government of Syria to help. Its presence in Syria is without doubt legal under International Law.

U.S. activities in Syria can be seen as two phases:

Regime Change

The provision of arms to insurgents in Syria by the U.S. (and others) was and is illegal. It is a breach of the Prohibition on the Use of Force in international law specifically of the UN Charter Article 2(4):

All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.

Fight against ISIS

The U.S. argues that its presence in Syria is in (collective) self-defense under Article 51 of the UN Charter because the Islamic State in Syria threatens to attack the United States. That, in itself, would be insufficient as Syria is a sovereign state. The U.S. therefore additionally claims that the Syrian state is “unwilling or unable” to fight against the Islamic State.

The Scientific Services says that the claim of “unwilling or unable” was already dubious when the U.S. operation started. This for two reasons:

  • It is not law or an internationally accepted legal doctrine. (The 120 members of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) and others have argued strongly against it.)
  • The Syrian government itself was fighting ISIS, but it could not operation in large parts of its territory where the Islamic State had taken control. Some argue that this justified the “unable” argument. But ISIS is largely defeated and it no longer has any significant territorial control.

The already dubious legal case for the presence of U.S. (and other ‘coalition’ troops in Syria) can thus no longer be made. The U.S. presence in Syria is illegal.

Israel’s attack on Hizbullah and Iranian units and installations in Syria, as well as against Syria itself, are claimed by Israel to be ‘anticipatory self-defense’ under UN Charter Article 51. But ‘anticipatory self-defense’ could only be claimed when attacks against Israel were imminent. That case has not been made. The Israeli attacks are thus ‘pre-emptive self defense’ which is not an accepted doctrine of International Law.

The service was not asked for an opinion on Turkey’s incursion into Syria but it notes that claims of ‘self defense’, as Turkey makes in its fight against Kurdish entities in Syria, are often abuses for Geo-strategic purposes.

So far the Scientific Services opinion.

The given legal arguments are not new. Other have long reasoned along the same lines and came to the same result.

But Germany is a partner of the U.S. coalition of the willing against ISIS. Its military has flown reconnaissance missions from Turkey and Jordan in support of the U.S. operation under the same legal argument the U.S. made. The German parliament is now unlikely to renew the mandate for the anti-ISIS operation. Other countries will likely follow and end their participation in the U.S. coalition.

While this is will not change the situation on the ground in Syria it does change the international political atmosphere. It also ‘rehabilitates’ the Syrian government in the European public eye as it can no longer be depicted as an ‘enemy.’

Posted in USA, Germany, SyriaComments Off on German Parliament: US Presence in Syria Is Illegal

Exposed! How Britain’s anti-Semitism scaremongers operate

Anti-Semitism disinformation debunked

By Eve Mykytyn*

If only Britons knew

This article about the British charitable organisation, the Campaign against Anti-Semitism (CAA), and its officers, Gideon Falter and Steve Silverman, examines events in England but ought to serve as a cautionary message for Canadians and Americans.

The article will delve into the corrosive methods of the CAA; review the manner in which this ultra Zionist group “discovers” anti-Semitic “incidents”; examine their inaccurate statistical “studies” and see how they seek to intimidate political parties, venues, the press and others; and look at the court cases which the CAA has prosecuted. In the guise of fighting anti-Semitism, the CAA has managed to manoeuvre British society into abdicating its core liberal values, intimidate the prosecutorial and judicial system, and silence criticism of Israel in both social media and the mainstream media.

The CAA does not just attempt to limit speech; it openly follows a scorched earth policy “that if someone commits an anti-Semitic act in the UK (including criticism of Israel)” the CAA “ensure[s] ruinous consequences, be they criminal, professional, financial or reputational”.

For example, in the last 18 months Britain’s largest political party, the Labour Party, has suspended and expelled over a hundred of its members for expressing their views on Israel or Jewish history. Presumably these dismissals act as a deterrent to others who might also wish to express their opinions. Hard as it is to believe, in 21st century Britain people have been imprisoned for trying to be funny… 

The CAA’s “success” in Britain is not irrelevant to Americans. Despite the First Amendment, rules limiting speech have been creeping into our society, notwithstanding our constitutional protections. 

Organisations not unlike CAA have been operating in the US for some time. In South Carolina criticising Israel is essentially prohibited on public university campuses, and in other states support for BDS (the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement) will prohibit one from getting a government job or contract. Similar laws have been proposed in the US Congress. It is crucial that we resist this slide into controlled speech at the expense of our crucial values of free expression and tolerance.

Rowan Laxton

In 2006 Rowan Laxton was using an exercise bike alone on the mezzanine floor of a London gym when he saw a television report about an elderly Palestinian man killed by the Israeli assault on Gaza. Laxton allegedly exclaimed: “F…..g Israelis! F…..g Jews!” Gideon Falter  (now head of the CAA) and William Lemaine, who were on a lower floor using weights, claimed to have overheard Laxton, and complained to staff at the gym.

The police were going to let Laxton off with a caution but, before it could be arranged, Falter found out that Laxton was a senior Foreign Office official and brought the story to half a dozen newspapers. The police decided to proceed with a prosecution. 

Laxton was initially found guilty of “using threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour, or disorderly behaviour… within the hearing or sight of a person likely to be caused harassment, alarm or distress thereby…” aggravated by using abusive words that had a racial or ethnic element. Laxton was fined and removed from his Foreign Office position.

Laxton exercised his right to an appeal and a rehearing wherein the Crown Court found that Laxton did not say “f…..g Jews”, the comment on which the prosecution was based and which he had always denied. The court also found, as an alternative ground, that Laxton would have thought no one was within earshot.

The Daily Mailplayed a key role in ensuring that the case received national attention and went to trial, but seems not to have reported the appeal and acquittal at all. It is an open question of how Falter heard Laxton’s alleged outburst, if at the time no one was within earshot of Laxton. One reasonable assumption is that the court did not believe that Falter actually heard Laxton’s statement. 

Eight years after the Laxton incident, Gideon Falter founded the Campaign Against Anti-Semitsm, a hardcore Zionist charity that advocates zero tolerance of, and vows to ensure “criminal, professional and reputational consequences”, to those it decides are anti-Semites.

Stephen Silverman

Stephen Silverman is the CAA’s “Director of Investigations and Enforcement” and has dedicated much of his time to ruining the intellectual and artistic careers of others. Silverman is himself a musician wannabe, and runs a music school in a London suburb.

In the last few years Silverman and the CAA have engaged in a relentless assault against artists, intellectuals, religious leaders and elected politicians operating in or visiting England. The “Director of Investigations” does not like ex-London Mayor Ken Livingstone, nor does he approve of a list of academicsor church ministers who care for human rights or dare to disagree with Israel. The self-appointed inquisitor despises the hugely popular Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. Silverman has made a number of attempts to ruin the music careers of both Alison Chabloz and Gilad Atzmon. In addition, Silverman takes it upon himself to write and call music venues demanding that they cancel Atzmon concerts claiming that Atzmon is a notorious anti-Semite.

Stephen Silverman, was exposed in open court in December 2016 as having been the Twitter troll @bedlamjones. As a Zionist troll, Silverman abused anti-Zionists, particularly women. His sadistic posts called for arrest and imprisonment in response what he considered to be “anti-Semitic” comments.

Silverman has also determined that Gordon Nardell, the man who has taken on the unenviable job of policing anti-Semitism within the Labour Party, is insufficiently sensitive to anti-Semitism. Apparently, according to Silverman, “Nardell has also turned his sights on Campaign Against Anti-Semitism, stating that our work to combat hatred directed at Jews by Labour members is “revolting” and results in anti-Semitism being “abused and belittled”.

For Nardell’s sin of distrusting the CAA, the CAA has demanded that “an independent and transparent disciplinary process… be instituted in the Labour Party”. The CAA’s website does not explain why the Labour Party need justify its own campaign against anti-Semitism to the CAA.

What is anti-Semitism?

UNESCO’s definition of racism is that it is “a theory of races hierarchy which argues that the superior race should be preserved and should dominate the others. Racism can also be an unfair attitude towards another ethnic group. Finally racism can also be defined as a violent hostility against a social group.” The traditional definition of anti-Semitism is the “criticising of, or discriminating against Jews for being Jews”. This definition is not substantially different from UNESCO’s definition of racism. 

However, despite the fact that enforcing hate speech laws based on a traditional definition of racism would protect Jews as well as others, in December 2016 the United Kingdom followed other countries in adopting the “international definition of anti-Semitism”, which begins by saying: “Anti-Semitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred towards Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of anti-Semitism are directed towards Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, towards Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.”

The new “international definition” is troubling because it specifically targets speech and thoughts and fails to define what a “certain” perception of Jews is, and an expression of hatred towards Jews is cited, not to make the definition more precise but only as one possible example. 

It is well worth reviewing the “examples of anti-Semitism” included in the “international definition” which are extremely broad and include, among other things, accusing a Jewish person of valuing Israel or his fellow Jews over his home country and the seemingly paradoxical provision prohibiting speech denying that Jews have the right to self-determination through Israel.

But if racism against one group is to be fought on a broader basis than other forms of racism, that extra protection ought to be to aid a group uniquely needing the state’s protection – an allegedly poor, downtrodden and persecuted group. It is of note that, in contrast to the downtrodden, Jews as a group have been extraordinarily successful at utilising the media and the courts and obtaining the power to “hold the feet of the government to the fire”.

If UNESCO’s definition aimed at defining racism as a universal problem, the “international definition” adheres to the idea that Jews are not a part of the universal, they are somehow different, their plight is unique. 

Why do the Jews in particular need a broader definition of racial hatred? Why do Jews see a need to create a category of hatred that applies only to them? What is lacking in the UNESCO definition that is covered by the “international” one? The answer is that the “international definition” serves to restrain speech and restrict thought. It conflates the Jewish State of Israel with Jews as it vets a range of discourses such as criticism of Israeli politics, Jewish culture, Jewish history and Zionist ideology. 

It is not surprising that this definition is espoused by some Zionist institutions. However, its adoption by so many countries is perplexing and begs an explanation. In a world in which free speech, freedom of association and freedom of religion are valued, there is a real question of why such a broad definition of anti-Semitism is appropriate and what exactly it is designed to accomplish. 

Then there is the CAA, for whom the international definition is only a starting point. Their accusations of anti-Semitism go beyond even the very broad and over-inclusive definition of the “international definition”. If you find anti-Semitism in t-shirts, major party political gatherings or stupid pet videos, then the definition is very expansive indeed. Why would an organisation dedicated to fighting anti-Semitism be so interested in finding anti-Semitism in every possible utterance? It is clear that the CAA wants to stop any discussion of Jews, Israel or Jewish history in any but its prescribed manner. In its aggressive policing of speech, the CAA and others work to enforce Jewish power precisely as it is defined by Gilad Atzmon: “the power to suppress criticism of Jewish power”.

Freedom of t-shirt

While freedom of speech may be evaporating throughout the English-speaking world, at least we are assured that freedom of t-shirt is still protected in England. 

Last year, the CAA’s website bemoaned that Edinburgh-based law graduate Sophie Stephenson won’t face criminal charges for wearing a Hezbollah t-shirt. The CAA wrote that: “On 1 July 2017, Stephenson tweeted a photograph of herself wearing a Hizballah t-shirt, explaining: “Went out to dinner with my family tonight wearing a Hizballah t-shirt.” And then, even worse, Stephenson confirmed: “I have a flag too.”

The CAA, in its zeal to fight anti-Semitism, reported Stephenson to the police, alleging that she had committed an offense under Section 13 of the Terrorism Act 2000. But despite the CAA’s urging, Scottish Police declined to act against the young “rebel”.

The CAA “considered undertaking a private prosecution” against Stephenson. However, its website lamented, “we were unable to secure enough funding to do so”. Following its report of the supposedly anti-Semitic/terrorist-loving Stephenson, the CAA called upon the public to “consider making a monthly donation to help fund Campaign Against Anti-Semitism” presumably to allow it to continue to harass Britons, accusing them of anti-Semitic behaviour, and interfering with their elementary freedoms including the right to wear rebellious t-shirts. Disturbingly, asking for donations in this context suggests that the CAA is attempting to cash in from its dubious anti-Semitic claims. Not exactly the ethical conduct you might expect of a charity. 

Methodology, it is not!

The CAA claims to run “methodological” “research into anti-Semitism in British political parties”. Trolling and spying on elected British politicians on social media and public meetings, the CAA keeps a “record” of allegedly “anti-Semitic discourse and discourse that enables anti-Semitism, by officials and candidates in political parties”. This means that a Jewish organisation with a clear political agenda endeavours to monitor the British political discourse to restrain certain political opinions. The CAA’s actions prosecuting its farfetched “findings” are dangerous enough, but more troubling is its success in terrorising the British political universe into compliance with its dictates.

What are some “examples” of discourse that the CAA has claimed enable anti-Semitism and the dissemination of anti-Semitic ideas?

Ken Loach

Internationally acclaimed film-maker and Labour supporter Ken Loach told the BBC’s Daily Politics programme that he had been attending Labour meetings for 50 years and had “never in that whole time heard a single anti-Semitic word or a racist word”, and that allegations of anti-Semitism were a fallacy “without validation or any evidence”.

The CAA claimed that Loach’s statement brought to light a “discourse that enables anti-Semitism and the dissemination of anti-Semitic ideas”. How is Loach’s statement racist? Does it target Jews, identify Jews as a collective or advocate discrimination against Jews or anyone else? Is there even a criminal category or a showing of bias in which “not witnessing” conduct implicates one in that very conduct? How does not witnessing anti-Semitism make one into an anti-Semite? Does not witnessing a murder makes one a murderer? Under the CAA’s “rationale” anyone who fails to see the anti-Semitism they do is an anti-Semite.

Diane Abbott

Abbott ran afoul of the CAA when she said: “It’s a smear to say that Labour has a problem with anti-Semitism. It is something like a smear against ordinary party members.” The CAA claimed that “Abbott’s comments were widely condemned. The overwhelming majority of UK Jewish community bodies have expressed public concern about anti-Semitism in the Labour Party, including the chief rabbi.” Whether or not this statement is accurate, how is it that Abbott’s statement was misinterpreted as a criticism of Jews when it is clearly a defence of the Labour Party? 

Ken Livingstone

The CAA has a long file on former London Mayor Livingstone, beginning in 1982 when the paper, the Labour Herald, of which Livingstone was co-editor, ran an unfavorable cartoon of the then Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin. According to the CAA, Livingstone’s most egregious anti-Semitic remark was his claim that that in 1932 (Hitler came to power in 1933) Hitler had championed Jewish emigration to Israel (actually, then Palestine) and was “supporting Zionism before he went mad and ended up killing six million Jews”. The United States Holocaust Museum website generally supports Livingstone’s statement and reveals that until 1941, Germany encouraged Jews to emigrate and that 60,000 Jews left Germany/Austria for Palestine, a number second only to the number of Jews who went to the United States.

Livingstone rejected claims that he had brought the Labour Party into disrepute and said he was not guilty of anti-Semitism, but resigned from the party and acknowledged that his comments had upset Jews and offended others. “I am truly sorry for that,” he said.

Some of Livingstone’s critics were not satisfied with his apology for his truthful statement. Ruth Smeeth, a Labour lawmaker, described his behaviour as “grossly offensive to British Jews”. MP Smeeth’s reaction is bizarre. Is it anti-Semitic for Livingstone to discuss Jewish history? The Transfer Agreement between Hitler’s Germany and the Zionist Congress may be embarrassing for some Jews, but how is recounting history hate speech? MP Smeeth, the CAA and others claiming to be offended managed by ousting Livingstone to enforce their ironclad rule that certain Jewish history is “off limits”.

War on Labour

Following its anti-methodology, the CAA came to the conclusion that the British Labour Party is “eight times worse than any other party”. Not 5, 6 or 8.3 but exactly 8. What “evidence” supports this “finding?”

The British media have failed to do their job of investigating alleged incidents of anti-Semitism, and instead accept the CAA’s claims without questions.

The CAA’s website publishes an “enemies list” of sorts, chronicling the alleged anti-Semitism of 39 members of the Labour Party. A striking number of the CAA’s complaints address statements about Israel, not about Israel as Jews, but about the actions of the country. To date, about 150 members of the Labour Party have been expelled for alleged anti-Semitism and there is a backlog of cases.

Dubious cases such as those cited here are treated by the CAA as “anti-Semitic incidents” that help the CAA feed the idea that England is rife with anti-Semitism. The British media have failed to do their job of investigating alleged incidents of anti-Semitism, and instead accept the CAA’s claims without questions. 

Fiddling with numbers

Fiddler on the Roof may be emblematic of Eastern European Jewish folklore but fiddling with numbers is a symptom of contemporary Zionist politics in general and of the CAA in particular. The CAA compiles and disseminates information on anti-Semitism, basing its claims on methodology that is patently unreliable.

The “anti-Semitism audit” produced by the CAA purports to track incidents of anti-Semitism on an annual basis. The audit is a deeply flawed document, relying on data known to be unreliable and subjected to no proper statistical analysis. 

Even the CAA’s use of the term “audit” is inappropriate. An “audit” is defined as “an official inspection of an… organisation’s accounts, typically by an independent body”. The CAA has no official or professional status as an auditor, nor would its methods be accepted by anyone in a position to conduct a professional audit. 

The CAA has been advised by police forces that comparing police reports across jurisdictions and years leads to misleading results. The CAA’s anti-Semitism audit was heavily criticised in the Jewish media by statistics expertswho noted that the CAA’s “methodology” was “flawed”, “amateurish” and “misleading”. But none of that stopped the CAA from promoting its manufactured “findings” in the mainstream media.

The CAA based its audit on gathering data from the police. But the CAA doesn’t enjoy free access to police files. Instead, it uses different techniques to gather information. This haphazard “methodology” creates crucial problems: 

1. Police forces in different regions of Britain use different standards to gather data regarding hate crimes.

2. Police forces in Britain are presently in the process of revising how they collect their hate crime records so that data from one year may show different results than data from a different year even if the number of hate crimes remains constant.

3. The CAA basically gathers information on the volume of incidents recorded that it considers to be anti-Semitic. But the CAA itself is actively engaged in increasing this volume. It frequently reports incidents to the police and urges other members of the Jewish community to follow suit. An interested body that actively contributes to the rise of reported anti-Semitic incidents cannot also claim to be objective in its “audit” that measures the rise of anti-Semitsm.

4. While the CAA’s audit of anti-Semitism shows a nationwide rise of 14.9 per cent in anti-Semitic incidents between 2016 and 2017, this is based on data gathered by the CAA half of which shows wild year to year fluctuations of up to 1050 per cent. Such fluctuations defy any rationale. These statistical anomalies beg careful analysis that the CAA not only fails to apply – the CAA fails to address this drastic shift in number of reported incidents. The CAA’s study aggregates divergent data collected in different ways and calls that an “audit” of anti-Semitism in Britain. The flawed study was released to the British public with the help of the disgracefully gullible British media. The BBC, Sky, the Guardianand others reported the amateurish statistical “audit” to the British public without raising a single question as to its reliability.

The 2016 audit

In July 2017 the CAA published its 2016 annual audit of anti-Setmitic crimes in the UK. The audit’s first pages raise serious questions as to its reliability:

On page 4 it reads: “2016 was the worst year on record for anti-Semitic crimes”, reporting a 14.9 per cent rise in crimes “targeting Jews” nationwide. But a few lines below, the audit states that during the same period “violent anti-Semitic crimes fell by 44.7 per cent”. This difference in incidences appears contradictory. 

The CAA admits that it doesn’t have an explanation for the drop in violent crimes: “We have considered various explanations; however at this point we do not find them persuasive.” (page 6). This drop occurred even though the CAA inflated the number of “violent incidents” by expanding the Home Office definition of violent incidents. (page 16) The CAA defined violent anti-Semitic acts as the combination of the Home Office categories of “homicide” or “violence with injury”, and the heretofore non-violent “assault without injury” and “racially or religiously aggravated assault without injury”.

This means that the audit conveyed the good news that, even using the CAA’s inflated category, the number of “violent anti-Semitic incidents” dropped. Strangely, the Jewish pressure group does not write that the drop in violent anti-Semitic crime is a positive finding.

Fishing for J words

Since the CAA doesn’t have an access to each police force’s records, it derives its statistics from police reports. When a police force does not flag anti-Semitic incidents, the CAA asks that police force to conduct a keyword search of its files:

For the purposes of this research, the keywords used were the following whole words: Jew, Jews, Jewish, Judaism, Semite, Semitic, Semitism, antisemite, anti-Semitic, anti-Semitism, Yid, Yids, Yiddo, or Yiddish. (page 17)

Some police forces made the CAA aware that their keywords method is not a reliable way to find anti-Semitic crime. “Not all incidents where ‘Jew’ is mentioned are anti-Semitic,” wrote the Northumbria police force. It also refers to the CAA exercise as a “fishing expedition”. The CAA ignored this caution and simply used as the number of incidents the data they had been warned were incorrect. 

Duplicity vs methodology

The CAA employs inadequate and inconsistent methods of information gathering not only in its audit, but in its information gathering from Jews.

In 2017 the CAA made some shocking revelations: 

  • “One out of three British Jews were considering leaving the kingdom.” 
  • “Four out of five Jews saw anti-Semitism disguised as comments about Israel.”
  • “Four out of five saw Labour as anti-Semitic.”
  • “Half of British Jews didn’t trust the Crown Prosecution Service.”

And the source of these disturbing feelings? They came from the results of an online questionnaire found on the CAA’s website. The CAA’s findings were not even from as unbiased sample as the average FaceBook poll. Instead of revealing what British Jews think, the CAA “survey” revealed the opinions of its Zionist readers. It is outrageous to label the results of this exercise “statistics”. In fact, Jewish leaders who criticised the CAA’s duplicitous use of the “poll” were brutally silenced and slandered. Probably the most problematic result of the poll was that the British press reported it but did not point out that the CAA’s findings were based on a self-selecting sample.

Stupidity or duplicity?

Is the CAA a dysfunctional body of incompetent and clueless characters or is the CAA a group of consciously deceptive Zionists who deliberately deceives the British public? The following evidence suggests the latter.

As discussed above, the CAA 2016 anti-Semitsm audit is methodically and factually a problematic document. The CAA was warned of this by different law-enforcement bodies such as the Northumbria police. The CAA audit uses its questionable data to show an increase in the volume of reported anti-Semitic incidents but still fails to prove an increase in anti-Semitsm. Does that mean that the CAA intended to produce a deceptive audit?

The CAA audit’s raw data (from page 24 onward) reveals extreme fluctuations in anti-Semitic incidents reported by police forces from 2015 to 2016, with year to year increases of up to 1050 per cent in some categories and drops of 80-90 per cent in others.

In Derbyshire, for instance (page 34), the audit shows an increase of 1050 per cent in non-criminal anti-Semitic incidents: from two in 2015 to 23 in 2016. This would mean that non-criminal anti-Semitic incidents rose in Derby 70 times more than the CAA’s own nationwide rate of 14.9 per cent. On paper, the situation in Derbyshire is almost a Shoah scenario. Did the CAA try to verify, as even elementary statistics would require, this enormous increase? Was there a pogrom reported in Derbyshire? 

In Hertfordshire (page 44), they show an increase of almost 400 per cent in anti-Semitic crime and a surge of 800 per cent in non criminal anti-Semitic incidents. Again, there is no indication that the CAA tried to look into the cause of this improbable increase.

The explanation of the unreasonable rise was known to the CAA. West Yorkshire police notified the CAA that the recent rise in numbers of hate crime incidents “are predominantly associated with administrative change in relation to force crime-recording processes”. It was an administrative change, not an increase in anti-Semitism that led to the huge increase in the number of hate crimes recorded. So, despite the CAA’s knowledge of the reasons for the wild fluctuations, the CAA still dispensed the misleading numbers to the British public. 

The raw police reports that the CAA’s audit relies upon reveal that 21 of the 46 reports showed fluctuations well beyond what could reasonably be likely (more than three times the CAA own nationwide figure of 14.9 per cent rise in anti-Semitic incidents). The CAA could claim that its mistakes were due to incompetence, that they simply copied and pasted police reports without thinking. But the last page of the audit reveals that this is not the case.

The CAA does admit that the numbers reported by Wiltshire police (page 73) were unreliable, as they showed a radical rise from one incident in 2015 to 139 incidents in 2016. This is an increase of 13900 per cent in anti-Semitic incidents in a region with fewer than 540 Jews. The CAA discarded the data from Wiltshire as unreliable. But by deciding not to include the Wiltshire police report the CAA reveals that it doesn’t just copy and paste police data.

So, the CAA included some data and discarded others with no apparent standards. What statistical methodology did the CAA use when it decided to discard a rise in 13,900 per cent in anti-Semitic incidents in one jurisdiction and to include a rise in 1000 per cent, 400 per cent or even 50 per cent in others?

It is a basic tenet of statistical analysis that statistics from different sources cannot be combined or meaningfully compared without properly adjusting for different data gathering systems and methods. Deriving an overall percentage increase by averaging data derived by different systems is patently absurd. Nor is it accurate to compare different years from the same data source unless the gathering methodology is the same. The CAA’s audit compiles apples, oranges and bananas and treats them as identical. The extreme fluctuations in police reporting reveals that police force systems did exactly as the police force said it did and underwent significant reporting changes as the CAA admits in its introduction (page 3).

The alerts from the police forces that collection methods had changed means that the CAA should have known that its audit was flawed. This was also pointed out to the CAA by experts within the Jewish community who were highly critical of the audit. 

Michael Pinto Duschinsky, a well respected political scientist, wrote a devastating commentary in the Jewish Chronicle about the CAA. As a holocaust survivor, Duschinsky writes, I have two commitments: “to combat anti-Semitism and other forms of racism and to avoid trivialising it by misleading allegations”. Duschinsky denounced the CAA for its “deeply flawed”, “misleading” and “amateurish” methods. 

Of the self-selected CAA poll, Duschinsky wrote:

It was completely predicable that the questionnaire would produce the conclusion that one in four British Jews had considered leaving the UK… This was because the questions were so slanted and tendentious and because anyone who wished could complete the questionnaire… Not only did CAA incorrectly characterise its amateur questionnaire of Jewish opinion as a “poll” (thereby suggesting a statistically-valid sample), it then used overblown language in reporting it results.

Abuse of the judicial process 

The hysteria over alleged anti-Semitism has led to trials and convictions for the crime of “anti-Semitism”. Cases that the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) refused to prosecute two years ago have now been brought by the CPS after action from the CAA. Is the change in prosecutions a sign that the CPS now realises that it can obtain convictions it thought unlikely, does it result from a change in what the state considers to be “speech” crimes, or is the CPS placating the CAA?

Gideon Falter and the CAA have been instrumental in utilising a variety of techniques to force prosecution of “anti-Semitism”. Their campaign to restrain speech previously thought permissible has been successful in England as the following sampling of cases shows. 

Jeremy Bedford Turner

Turner was recently sentenced to a year in jail after a jury convicted him of stirring up racial hatred during a 2015 speech in which Turner criticised Shomrim, a Jewish-only police unit funded by Britain, whose job it is to protect only Jewish neighbourhoods. Turner further opined the racist sentiment that he wanted Jews out of England.

The CPS declined to prosecute Turner’s speech as incitement to racial hatred. There is an “incitement to racial hatred” clause in the statutes but it is not all-encompassing, and it did not come close to making “anti-Semitism” illegalThe CPS’s policy guidelines on cases involving “incitement” clearly state that the language employed by a defendant must have been “threatening, abusive or insulting“. The courts have upheld the right to freedom of speech even when behaviour is, as in this case, “annoying, rude or even offensive without necessarily being insulting”. 

Falter requested a “victim’s right to review” in reponse to the CPS’s decision not to prosecute. The request was denied on the basis that Turner hadn’t mentioned Falter, Falter did not personally hear Turner’s speech and therefore Falter couldn’t claim victim status. The CAA then instituted the process for judicial review of the CPS over its decision not to prosecute and, on the eve of a hearing in the High Court, the CPS agreed to quash its original decision, put a more senior lawyer on the case and proceeded to prosecute and convict Turner. 

CAA head Falter claimed the verdict was a “damning indictment” not only of Turner, but of the CPS and its outgoing head, Alison Saunders. Falter said: “The real question is why the director of public prosecutions and CPS got this so dismally wrong.” Falter’s question conflates a jury verdict of “guilty” with proof that the CPS was misinterpreting the law.

Further in 2015, when Turner gave his speech, the United Kingdom had not yet signalled its willingness to stifle speech by adopting the “international definition” of anti-Semitism. 

Alison Chabloz

Alison Chabloz, 54, of Derbyshire, was recently convicted on two counts of causing an offensive, indecent or menacing message to be sent over a public communications network. District Judge John Zani said he was satisfied the material was grossly offensive and that Chabloz intended to insult Jewish people. 

The CPS initially declined to prosecute Chabloz’s speech, presumably because it was both satirical and political. The CAA launched a private prosecution against Chabloz. Private prosecutions are undertaken in the British system as a direct way for a citizen to institute a criminal case. The rules are intricate, but until recently such prosecutions generally dealt with complex business questions. 

Under constant pressure from the CAA, the CPS took over the prosecution of Chabloz. The CAA had not utilised private prosecution in the Turner case since it were not present to hear the “slurs” and would have had no basis for private prosecution. 

The songs that provoked Chabloz’s prosecution had been performed at a London Forum event (hardcore nationalist gathering) in 2016 and uploaded to YouTube. They included one song describing the Nazi concentration camp Auschwitz as “a theme park” and the gas chambers a “proven hoax”. This is a pretty clear example of provocative speech that most of us disagree with. However, does the state need to criminalise such speech? Won’t the “marketplace of ideas” call out Chabloz? I suspect the internet world would not allow her lyrics to go unchallenged.

Prosecutor Karen Robinson told the court: “Miss Chabloz’s songs are a million miles away from an attempt to provide an academic critique of the holocaust. They’re not political songs. They are no more than a dressed-up attack on a group of people for no more than their adherence to a religion.”

But is it a legal requirement that political song lyrics provide an “academic critique”? Must political satire be clearly defined as found by a court? It’s not clear that “Alice’s Restaurant” or “Fortunate Son” would pass this test.

Adrian Davies, defending, argued that: “It is hard to know what right has been infringed by Miss Chabloz’s singing.” The singer has defended her work as “satire”, saying many Jewish people found the songs funny.

The focus of the private prosecution brought by Falter was Alison’s comments criticising the narratives of Elie Wiesel, Irene Zisblatt and Otto Frank, in her song Survivors.

The authenticity of the tales of these three holocaust victims have been the subject of academic debate. The Anne Frank foundation recently admitted the diary had not been solely authored by Anne. Elie Wiesel’s wartime saga has been called into question over a number of issues. Under cross-examination, Falter was forced to admit that he had not actually read Zisblatt’s book, and so knew nothing about its accuracy, despite having brought a private prosecution to protect it from ridicule.

There are no specific laws against holocaust denial in the UK, even if that is what this was. Britain has resisted attempts to enforce a European Union directive outlawing holocaust denial. Falter seemed to differ from the Crown which said that the prosecution was not against mere questioning of the holocaust. Falter indicated that those who question the new holocaust religion should be prosecuted under the law and attacked professionally: that is, ruined financially. 

Falter also claimed that it was “intrinsically offensive” for Chabloz to refer to Palestine being reclaimed “from the river to the sea”. But, of course, the question of whether Palestine ought to be reclaimed for its indigenous people is a political question and not one of race, so what exactly was her crime? Falter openly stated that he is intent on shielding Israel from criticism, and said of the pro-Palestinian aspects of Chabloz’s songs: “You want to silence her and stop her putting those messages out.” 

All of this left inconsistencies in the prosecution’s case with regard to whether the truth/falsehood of Chabloz’s criticisms of Zisblatt, et al, were relevant, or whether instead the Crown was enforcing an unspoken law that no-one claiming to be a holocaust survivor can be ridiculed, regardless of truth/falsehood. 

Adrian Davies, Chabloz’s lawyer, told Judge Zani that his ruling would be a landmark one, setting a precedent on the exercise of free speech. This is a particularly egregious precedent limiting speech since it is not clear what speech led to Chabloz’s conviction and the case therefore provides no insight to others on what speech must be avoided.

Gilad Atzmon

The case against Atzmon illustrates that in the present environment in Britain, you can be liable not only for anti-Semitism, but for questioning the methodology by which anti-Semitism is determined.

Falter appeared on Sky News on 16 July 2017 to explain how he, on behalf of the CAA, had brought a law suit against the Crown for failure to prosecute the anti-Semitic speech supposedly uttered by Jeremy Bedford-Turner. Falter further complained that his statistics on the incidence of anti-Semitism showed far more anti-Semitic incidents than the CPS claimed. Falter claimed, “our view [on anti-Semitism] is right and the Crown is wrong”. 

Writing in response to Falter’s appearance, Atzmon wrote on his own website that: “We are asked to choose between two versions of the truth, that delivered by Falter who leads the CAA and basically makes his living manufacturing anti-Semitic incidents and the judicial approach of the CPS: a public body, subject to scrutiny and committed to impartiality.”

Atzmon pointed out that “Falter interprets condemnation of Israel and Jewish politics as ‘hate crimes”. Atzmon commended the CPS for upholding “freedom of expression”, and this in free speech’s most cherished exercise – political speech. 

Atzmon noted that Zionism also benefits from anti-Semitism (even though it does not intentionally cause it) since Israel claims that it exists to provide shelter to all Jews. Comparing Falter and the CAA to Israel, Atzmon noted, “since a decrease in anti-Semitic incidents [could have] fatal consequences for Falter and his CAA’s business plan. They need anti-Semitism and a lot of it.”

Falter filed a suit against Atzmon, claiming libel and defamation. Falter’s complaint reads, in part: “In order to justify the existence of, and raise funds for, the CAA the Claimant (Falter) dishonestly fabricates anti-Semitic incidents, that is to say he characterizes conduct as anti-Semitic when he knows it is not, and knowingly exaggerates the prevalence of anti-Semitism and anti-Semitic activity.”

Falter complains that he was called a “devious fraud and a hypocrite”, even though neither word appears in Atzmon’s article. Falter further interprets Atzmon: “He [Falter] publicly campaigns against anti-Semitism but in reality his business plan is that he wants Jews to be hated so that he can make money.” In fact, Atzmon made the claim that Falter is a covert Jew hater who pretends to campaign against anti-Semitism.

In addition, Falter claimed that unless restrained, Atzmon would continue to publish similar words. Here Falter openly reveals that his lawsuit is not only against the words complained of, but an attempt to muzzle Atzmon.

The first stage of the lawsuit was a hearing before Justice Nicklin of the British High Court to define the issues created by the language complained of. In his ruling, the judge went beyond the complaint to determine that Atzmon’s words said that the claimant obtained funds through “fraud”.

Atzmon had not claimed that Falter committed fraud, and it was not clear that Falter’s misuse of statistics rose to the level of fraud, i.e. involving a criminal intent. The ruling made clear that a further defence before this justice would be pointless. The parties settled: Atzmon had to issue an apology and pay Falter £7500 in damages, plus an additional amount in legal fees. The irony of forcing Atzmon to pay Falter based on the allegedly false claim that Falter seeks money for anti-Semitism begs recognition.

The Nazi pug

Earlier this year Mark Meechan, aka “Count Dankula”, was convicted and fined £800 for posting on YouTube a video of a dog he had trained to give a Nazi salute in response to the phrases “gas the Jews” and sieg heil. In case viewers worried that he was trying to turn canines into Nazis, one pug dog at a time, Meechan stated in the video that he wasn’t himself a Nazi but thought that what he had done was funny. It is a reasonable interpretation of this video that it ridiculed Hitler supporters as much as it was offensive to others.

The Scottish police arrested Meecham and charged him with posting “grossly offensive, anti-Semitic and racist material”. Sheriff O’Carroll said the right to freedom of expression was very important but “in all modern democratic countries the law necessarily places some limits on that right”. 

Meecham pleaded not guilty but was convicted under the Communications Act in a crime that the court found was aggravated by “religious prejudice”. Although Meecham’s video was certainly tasteless and offensive, it is not clear how it fell into the obscure category of “religious prejudice”.

Meecham’s lawyer, Ross Brown, stated of Meecham, his difficulty, “it seems, was that he was someone who enjoyed shock humour… and went about his life under the impression that he lived in a jurisdiction which permitted its citizens the right to freely express themselves”. This perception is understandable; British humour is famous for its tastelessness. Monte Python mocked the church, Little Britain mocks the disabled and so on. 

Why did Scottish law enforcement prosecute a silly offensive video of a dog? Is Scotland so crime-free that this is a matter worthy of its crime-fighting resources? It’s hard not to wonder if the same case would have been brought five years ago. 

The First Amendment 

In the United States, our freedom to speak is guaranteed by the First Amendment, which forbids Congress from making a law abridging free speech (now held to apply to the states as well). The First Amendment was enacted primarily as a defence against government power. The founders were concerned that the federal government exercise only enumerated powers and no more. Still, free speech is not unlimited: the United States limits some speech, including false commercial speech, defamation and incitement to violence. 

No reasonable person enjoys confronting hate speech, but allowing free speech, even at its most obnoxious, frees us from self-appointed guardians of the discourse. Who would any of us choose to decide what speech ought to be allowed? Congress? Trump? Obama? The FBI? The NSA? Scientists? The courts? Or the CAA or ADL (Anti-Defamation League)? 

The United States government has spent more money on Israel than on any other foreign country, and it is reasonable for Americans to be free to comment on where their money is spent. And yet we have laws that punish those who speak out against Israel, even though we have no such laws for criticising our own government or to protect the people whom we formerly enslaved.

While speech against Israel is not illegal per se, the US government, and states such as New York and Texas (among others) have chosen to punish criticism of Israel as anti Semitic. They do this by prohibiting state funding or business with any group that advocates boycotting Israel. 

Canada also protects speech, but not “hate” speech. Under the urging of B’nai B’rith, Canada has prosecuted “anti-Semitic” speech as hate speech. As in the cases in England, it is difficult to ascertain which particular speech was forbidden. In a trial against blogger Arthur Topham, the prosecution cited all of Topham’s writings that were unfavourable to Israel or Jewish culture and hoped some of them stuck. They did, and Topham was convicted. 

Despite Canada’s enforcement of its hate speech laws, Falter urged Canadian Jews to follow his example of aggressive prosecution. He stated, “I believe that Canadian [Jews] increasingly will be looking at their situation and asking, ‘Do we have a future in this country?’ And that’s a question they shouldn’t be having to ask at all.” Where is Falter’s evidence that Canadian Jews are asking if they have a future in Canada? Is he trying to lay seeds of alienation so that Jews in Canada will feel less like a part of Canada?

This raises the question of whether the CAA intensifies anti-Semitism by urging Jews to find anti-Semitism everywhere and to prosecute perceived anti-Semitism and “to ensure ruinous consequences, be they criminal, professional, financial or reputational”. The CAA uses the judicial system to achieve its aims, but its use of the law seems cynical as in its legal machinations the CAA deliberately disrespects the principle of freedom of speech that is ingrained in the law of Britain, the United States and Canada.

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Saudi Zio-Wahhabi religious diplomacy targets Jerusalem

NOVANEWS

Saudi religious diplomacy targets Jerusalem

Saudi-Israeli love affair

By James M. Dorsey

A United Arab Emirates-backed Saudi effort to wrest control from Jordan of Islam’s holy places in Jerusalem signals a sharper, more overt edge to Saudi religious diplomacy and the kingdom’s quest for regional hegemony that risks deepening divides in the Muslim world.

The effort also serves to support Donald J. Trump’s plan for a resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that has split the Muslim world even before it has officially been made public and has been clouded by the US president’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

At the very least, Saudi Arabia hopes at the risk of destabilising Jordan, where Palestinians account for at least half of the country’s almost 10 million people, to drop its resistance to the Trump initiative.

Saudi Arabia and the UAE’s focus on Jerusalem has wider regional implications as they battle Turkey for ownership of the Jerusalem issue. The two countries tried to downplay the significance of two Islamic summits in Istanbul convened by Turkey to counter Trump’s move.

Turkey and the Gulf states are also at odds over the Saudi-UAE-led economic and diplomatic boycott of Qatar and policy towards Iran.

Ever closer relations between Israel, Saudi Arabia, UAE and Bahrain

The power and geopolitically-driven effort constitutes a marked shift in Saudi religious diplomacy that for much of the past four decades involved a $100 billion public diplomacy campaign to globally promote Sunni Muslim ultra-conservatism. More recently, Saudi Arabia has sought to project itself as a beacon of tolerance, inter-faith dialogue and an unidentified form of moderate Islam.

Saudi Arabia has not officially announced its quest to wrest control from Jordan of the Haram al-Sharif, or Temple Mount, home to Al-Aqsa Mosque, Islam’s third most holy site after Mecca and Medina, but evidence is piling up against the backdrop of ever closer relations between Israel, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain.

Flexing the kingdom’s financial muscle, Saudi King Salman told an Arab summit in Dhahran in April that he was donating $150 million to support Islam’s holy places in Jerusalem.

The donation can be seen as a response to a multitude of Turkish bequests to Islamic organisations in Jerusalem and efforts to acquire real estate.

But in contrast to Saudi Arabia, Turkey can capitalise on the fact that it maintains diplomatic relations with Israel to organise Islamist tours to the city. Thousands of Turkish supporters of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Justice and Democracy Party (AKP) visited the city in the past year. Turkish activists allegedly participated in last years protests on Haram al-Sharif.

Striking a different cord from that of his powerful son, Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman, who has been vocal in his support for Trump and empathy with Israeli positions, King Salman denounced the “invalidity and illegality” of the US decision to recognise Jerusalem.

Saudi Arabia, in opposition to the Jordanian endowment that administers Haram al-Sharif, last year backed Israel’s installation of metal detectorsfollowing an attack that killed two Israeli policemen.

Saudi and UAE foothold in Jerusalem

Some Jordanians saw the Saudi support as a precursor for a US-backed agreement with Israel that would give Gulf states a foothold on Temple Mount by allowing Saudi and UAE personnel to be posted at its entrances.

In competition with Turkey, the UAE, according to Kamal Khatib, an Israeli Palestinian Islamist leader, as well as Arab media reports, is seeking to purchase real estate adjacent to Haram al-Sharif. Khatib asserted that the UAE was operating through an associate of Muhammad Dahlan, an Abu Dhabi-based former Palestinian security chief with presidential ambitions.

Jordan and Saudi Arabia clashed in December during a gathering of the Arab Inter-Parliamentary Union when the kingdom attempted to challenge Jordan’s custodianship of holy places in Jerusalem.

Nobbling Jordan and some Palestinians

Saudi Arabia, together with the UAE and Kuwait, pledged US$ 2.5 billion to Jordan after mass anti-government protests rocked the country earlier this year in a bid to gain leverage and prevent it from turning to Turkey for help.

Al-Monitor quoted Raed Daana, a former director of preaching and guidance at Al-Aqsa Mosque Directorate, as saying that Saudi Arabia had secretly invited Palestinian Muslim dignitaries in a bid to garner support for a Saudi power grab.

Saudi officials are further believed to be putting pressure on Palestine Authority President Mahmoud Abbas to allow Saudi Islamic scholars to visit Palestine. In a rare outreach, Iyad Madani, a Saudi national and secretary-general of the Jeddah-based, 57-nation Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), visited Haram al-Sharif in January.

Bahraini go-between

Saudi Arabia and the UAE have used Bahrain, a financially weak state whose ruling family was bolstered in 2011 by the intervention of a Saudi-led military force to counter a popular revolt, as a front for some of their overtures towards Israel.

Bahrain, which last week granted entry to an Israeli delegation to participate in a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) meeting, has been at the forefront of the Gulf states’ religious diplomacy and propagation of inter-faith dialogue.

Israel’s only official presence in the Gulf is its under-the-radar mission to the International Renewable Energy Agency in Abu Dhabi that is widely seen as the Jewish state’s embassy to the region.

A prominent American rabbi, Marc Shneier, and evangelist Reverend Johnnie Moore, a member of Trump’s faith advisory board, keynoted at a dinner in Washington in May hosted by the Bahrain embassy. The Rev. Moore led a delegation of Bahraini and expatriate civic and business leaders on a visit to Israel last December, days after Trump had recognised Jerusalem as Jewish state’s capital.

The delegation’s Palestinian reception suggests that Saudi-UAE efforts to gain a geopolitically-driven religious foothold in Jerusalem may not be straight forward. Palestinian guards barred the delegation from entering Haram al-Sharifwhile protesters in Gaza blocked it from visiting the strip.

In a comment about the visit that could have applied to the broader Saudi-UAE effort, Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi said that she does not believe “this whole lovey-dovey approach of ‘we’re here to show tolerance’. Then go home and show tolerance at home.”

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Trump’s degeneracy and America’s moral angst

Trump's moral degeneracy

By Lawrence Davidson

Evidence of moral degeneracy

For all those who in 2016 closed their eyes, held their noses and took a leap into the unknown by voting for Donald Trump, it is time to pry open those eyelids, gaze upon what they have wrought, and smell the decay pervading the country’s public sphere. Indeed, it seems that growing numbers have, rather belatedly, noticed the signs of moral degeneracy coming from the Oval Office. What took them so long?

Actually, the time lapse is not really unusual. These Trump voters, having taken the leap sometimes for no other reason than their dislike of Hillary Clinton (and her “politics as usual” ways), returned to their local lives and carried on as before. It was Mrs Clinton’s defeat that satisfied them more than any concern with who had actually been elected. They had not paid attention to Trump’s malicious humbug.

These rather absent-minded balloters can be contrasted with another subset of voters, represented by the likes of former Klan leader David Duke, who went into their polling stations with eyes fully open. In February 2016 Duke had informed his white supremacist followers that “not voting for Trump was really treason to your heritage”. Later he would declare that “we are determined to take our country back. We are going to fulfill the promises of Donald Trump.” The “we” here are those American whites who feel that social justice and civil rights for anyone but themselves would be an affront to their “heritage”. Every nation has its bigots. These are America’s.

From his first day in office Trump has, consistently and without embarrassment, packed the higher offices of government with unqualified fanatics, incompetent ideologues, and people who had as their goal the destruction of the departments they “ran”.

And here is at least one big structural problem with US democracy – it is a winner-take-all system.Thus, the “nose holder” helped the bigot to win. And, there was really no excuse for this result except that millions were not thinking through the consequences of their actions. Could those who were motivated more to vote against Clinton than to vote in favour of Trump have really anticipated the present consequences of their actions? I am afraid the answer is yes.

Even before 8 November 2016, Trump’s ethical shortcomings were pretty obvious. All that bullying, slander and racial innuendo at his campaign rallies was spontaneous Trump – the real Trump – and not the product of some miscreant speechwriter or sleazy campaign director. The notion that gaining power would somehow breed a sense of responsibility in such a personality, if this happened to occur to anyone, is just rubbish. We have known this to be so ever since a certain German election in July of 1932.

Nonetheless, it should be noted that a president of Donald Trump’s temperament is not new in US history. He is not the first man with anger control problems and a stark disregard for the rule of law to hit the White House. However, he is certainly the most blatant. Not that history is a guide for the average voter – the majority of Americans are not historically aware.The national history they are taught often does not go beyond what is needed to uphold an unquestioning pledge of allegiance. Put that ignorance together with prevailing inattention and you have an explanation of why it took so long for many US citizens to realise that their president is a moral idiot.

From his first day in office Trump has, consistently and without embarrassment, packed the higher offices of government with unqualified fanatics, incompetent ideologues, and people who had as their goal the destruction of the departments they “ran”. That is, with reflections of himself. He has also been bombarding us with moronic tweets (which are often indicators of forthcoming moronic policies), and lying like a cheap rug. Indeed, the only time the man is not lying is when he is in the grip of a temper tantrum or identifying with white supremacists, as after the Charlottesville debacle.

  the real scoop is that most of these “illegal aliens” are fleeing Central American violence which, historically, Washington has abetted.

Yet, as noted, many Americans are only now shocked at the president’s behaviour. And what has been the trigger for this belated jolt? Family values – that is, the disregard of them as applied to those seeking to enter the US in an undocumented fashion.

You see, many of those described by the president as “rapists” and “dope peddlers” seeking to sneak across the nation’s southern border are accompanied by their families. Donald Trump has declared this to be an invasion of “criminals”, and as a deterrent to the “invaders”, he had allowed the nation’s border guards to kidnap their children. By the way, the real scoop is that most of these “illegal aliens” are fleeing Central American violence which, historically, Washington has abetted.

Regardless, in Trump’s eyes the aliens are less than human. They are not worthy of legal due process or any sort of human rights considerations. The snatching of their children was an expression of this attitude. And, when the First Lady recently went to inspect the resulting kiddy concentration camps, she let every one know how she, and no doubt the rest of the Trump tribe, felt about the plight of these stolen children. It was right there on her jacket: “I really don’t care.” Trump said the sentiment referred to the couple’s attitude toward “fake news”, but really that was just a fake excuse. It was stupid callousness on Melania’s part. It was one of those “how low can you go” situations.

Corroborating evidence

The misrepresented refugees along the southern border of the United States are not the only ones for whom Trump has disdain. Connections with organisations that defend the rights and contribute to the needs of the poor and oppressed are now, seemingly, held hostage to the dictates of Israel – an ally of the US that regards its indigenous Palestinians much as Trump regards the “illegal aliens” on the Mexican border. Thus, the Trump administration withdrew from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on 12 October 2017, citing alleged “anti-Israel bias”. One of the goals of UNESCO is “promoting education for peace and protecting culture under attack”. Given these ends and Israeli behaviour towards the Palestinians, what Washington calls “bias” is in fact logical and necessary criticism on UNESCO’s part.

The same maoeuvre was repeated on 20 June 2018 when the Trump administration withdrew the US from the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC). The council is the world’s premier human rights body that reviews and brings to light abuses on a country-by-country basis. Lo and behold, the Trump administration accused the UNHRC of “chronic bias” against Israel. What is a human rights organszation to do when confronted by a chronic human rights abusing state? Not be biased? Nor does the appearance of the occasional abuser state on its membership list negate the council’s mission. Membership is rotating and has not prevented the council from doing its job.

Conclusion

A recent Brookings Institution analysis stated that the goals of the Trump administration are ones of regression: “Weaken institutions not to its liking, abandon them if they do not comply with its demands… go it alone with little regard of the costs to US interests” and do so in a manner that “absolves the administration from pretending to lead by its own example on human rights”.

It should be noted that this approach to the world is not the product of a thought-out strategy. The present administration is not eschewing human rights because it has some detailed, if oddball, game plan to promote the betterment of American citizens. No. It is doing so because the man who is president and the henchmen he has surrounded himself with are themselves pathologically unethical people. And they in turn have found like partners both domestically and in foreign allies (Israel and Saudi Arabia, etc.). The dismissal of human rights comes naturally to these folks.

And all of this was predictable from the beginning of Trump’s campaign for the presidency – that is, if you were paying attention. Well, more and more citizens are now paying attention. They ask, “what kind of country do we want to be?” The word “want” is a misleading one. The US has always been a divided country. What enough of the American people did in 2016 was to allow the bigoted, barbaric part of the nation, assisted by the inattentive, to gain power in the person of Donald Trump.

There are congressional elections in November 2018. We will see how many of those who closed their eyes, held their noses and took a leap into the unknown by voting for Donald Trump now come to the polling stations hoping to atone for their sins.

Posted in USAComments Off on Trump’s degeneracy and America’s moral angst

Ukraine: Rights Groups Demand Nazi regime Stop Arming neo-Nazis

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Rights Groups Demand Israel Stop Arming neo-Nazis in Ukraine

Human rights activists petition the court to cease Israeli arms exports to Ukraine since some of these weapons reach neo-Nazi elements in Ukraine’s security forces

An Azov militiaman with a Tavor rifle
An Azov militiaman with a Tavor rifleAzov YouTube channel screenshot

A group of more than 40 human rights activists have filed a petition with the High Court of Justice, demanding the cessation of Israeli arms exports to Ukraine.

They argue that these weapons serve forces that openly espouse a neo-Nazi ideology and cite evidence that the right-wing Azov militia, whose members are part of Ukraine’s armed forces, and are supported by the country’s ministry of internal affairs, is using these weapons.

An earlier appeal to the Defense Ministry was met with no response.

The ministry’s considerations in granting export licenses for armaments are not disclosed to the public, but it appears that the appearance of Israeli weapons in the hands of avowed neo-Nazis should be a consideration used in opposing the granting of such a license.

Nevertheless, this is not the first time in which the defense establishment is arming forces that embrace a national socialist ideology.

In the past, Israel has armed anti-Semitic regimes, such as the generals’ regime in Argentina, which murdered thousands of Jews in camps while its soldiers stood in watchtowers guarding the abducted prisoners with their Uzi submachine guns.

According to a freedom of information petition to Israel’s defense ministry from last January (Hebrew: read in full here), Israel also armed Bolivia’s military regimes, knowing that Nazi war criminal Klaus Barbie was part of the regime. Legal documents used to convict the head of the junta also showed that Barbie’s death squads used Israeli Uzis.

In the case of Ukraine forces using Israeli weapons are openly stating their support for racist and anti-Semitic ideas, in various publications.

The Azov militia was established in Ukraine following the Russian invasion of the Crimean peninsula in 2014. The militia’s emblems are well-known national socialist ones. Its members use the Nazi salute and carry swastikas and SS insignias.

Moreover, some of them openly admit they have neo-Nazi sentiments and that they are Holocaust deniers. One militia member said in an interview that he was fighting Russia since Putin was a Jew. An Azov sergeant said that he was a national socialist, although he was not in favor of genocide, and as long as minorities in Ukraine did not demand special rights he would have no problem with them.

The militia’s founder, Andriy Biletsky, who is now a member of Ukraine’s parliament, formerly headed a neo-Nazi group called Patriot of Ukraine, now defunct. Its members comprise the founding core of Azov.

“Our nation’s historic mission at this critical juncture is to lead the final march of the white race towards its survival” Biletsky has said. “This is a march against sub-humans who are led by the Semite race.” According to reports by human rights groups militia members are suspected of war crimes, torture and sexual violence.

In tandem with the rising power of Azov, which has more than 3,000 members, there is a rise in anti-Semitic incidents and attacks against Ukraine’s minorities. Neo-Nazi groups have attacked Jews and Jewish memorial sites across Ukraine, as well as journalists, Roma and members of the LGBT community.

One member of parliament declared, in response to a question about the country’s “Jewish problem”, that “in the government there is non-Ukrainian bloodthis must be addressed.” Last May right-wing groups marched through Odessa, their leaders claiming that the city belongs to Ukrainians, not Jews, and that they would get rid of the latter.

All this is happening as the Ukrainian administration is trying to deny the country’s role in the Holocaust, just as is happening in Poland (now with the support of the Netanyahu government).

These attempts include rewriting the history of World War II and the glorification of Ukraine’s soldiers, using legislation and various publications, as well as concocting stories about Jews who were allies of national Ukrainian forces during the war, whereas in fact Jews had to hide their identity.

In 2015, the Holocaust Museum in Washington denounced Ukrainian legislation which was intended to prevent criticism of collaboration with the Nazis.

The Simon Wiesenthal Center and the World Jewish Congress condemned the decision to name central boulevards in Kiev after Nazi collaborators. If that weren’t enough, last April there was a march honoring Ukrainian Waffen SS units which massacred thousands of Jews during World War II. In June, Ukraine’s chief military prosecutor Anatoli Matios said in an interview that Jews want “to drown Slavs in blood.”

Since the spring of 2015 members of the Azov militia have been part of the regular security forces in Ukraine, a part of the National Guard which is under the country’s ministry of internal affairs. The militia encourages members and supporters to enlist in the army. However, the militia maintains itself as a separate organization.

In December of 2016 Ukraine’s internal affairs minister Arsen Avakov, considered Azov’s patron and a candidate for prime minister, met a Knesset delegation headed by MK David Amsalem, on an official visit to Ukraine.

Avakov has also met Arye Dery, the minister of interior. Avakov appointed Vadym Troyan, a senior Azov commander, as the head of Kiev’s police force. Another militia founder was given a different senior police post. These ties were formed when Avakov was a regional governor, cooperating with the neo-Nazi forces of the Patriot of Ukraine, the forerunner of Azov.

Last January the U.S. Congress prohibited any support for the Ukrainian militia. Since Israel’s defense ministry does not divulge any information on arms exports, particularly not to Ukraine, for fear of Russian wrath, it’s difficult to assess the extent of the ties with Kiev, but these are certainly in place.

The petition, submitted by attorney Itay Mack, contains abundant evidence showing the arming of the Ukrainian regime and its Azov forces.

Thus, for example, Ukrainian soldiers have been seen carrying Israeli-made Tavor rifles in military parades in Kiev. In February 2016 it was revealed that Elbit Systems will be part of a group investing in Ukraine’s defense establishment.

In April 2016 the chief of Ukraine’s air force met a representative of an Israeli defense company to discuss the upgrading of communications systems in that country’s warplanes and helicopters. The Ukrainian company “Fort” got Israel’s approval for making Tavor, Negev and Galil rifles.

In the city of Dnepropetrovsk in eastern Ukraine there is a military training school. Its website indicates that training there is provided former IDF officers and that its instructors were trained by Israelis.

The website has a photo of shooting practice with a Tavor rifle. It notes that the school trains units of the National Guard, whose members include Azov militiamen.

In May 2017 Ukraine’s Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman visited Israel and met with Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman to discuss the arming of Ukraine’s military forces.

In December of that year a man claiming to be a former IDF officer was interviewed by Ukrainian media, saying that he had taken part in battles in eastern Ukraine, where he was instructing soldiers. The Azov website also shows militia members using Tavor rifles.

All of this is unambiguous proof that Israel is exporting weapons to Ukraine, knowing that they reach right-wing militias, some members of which are avowed neo-Nazis who enjoy the support of the authorities.

The ministry of defense, as is its wont, refuses to address this issue, responding only in generalities without detailing the considerations underlying its decisions approving arms exports. It seems that in this case the public deserves a more detailed response, as do Ukrainian Jews the Israeli government supposedly claims to protect.

Even if these weapons are currently directed at Russians, one should take into account the reasonable possibility that in the future they will be used to achieve other goals, perhaps aimed at minority groups in the country. It will then be too late to halt the collaboration of the Israeli establishment with the murder of Jews and others. This will be one more chapter in the dismal history of using Israeli firearms in acts such as these.

Posted in ZIO-NAZI, UkraineComments Off on Ukraine: Rights Groups Demand Nazi regime Stop Arming neo-Nazis

July 2018 Sets the Scene for the World in the 21st Century?

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Historians may say in the future that July 2018 was one of the most significant months, not only the fact that 2018, the 100th anniversary of the end of WW1, being also the most important year of the early part of the 21st Century.

This July we will have ‘a strategic reset’ of the World order effecting all counties on the planet.

  • Trump in Brussels now for critical NATO meetings has brought interesting results and repositioning by many NATO members.
  • Trump goes to UK in the coming hours today amid British Government Ministerial resignations, possibly imminently Prime Minister May’s too, while the BREXIT conundrum looms large.
  • Regardless of the fact that the global mainstream media doesn’t seem to acknowledge it, the EU is on the point of imploding and the very future existence of the EURO is in question.
  • Russia, very well described by Trump on the 12th of July in a Brussels Press Conference, is a competitor not an enemy.
  • Nationalism and Christianity are on the rise everywhere that counter the Immigration and Muslim popular liberal narrative.
  • The most important meeting will be the first formal Trump-Putin one on the 16th July in Helsinki.

After we learn the results of the above July meetings, we will be in a position to understand how world relationships will be reformed. We all wait for the outcomes of these meetings with extreme interest.

Only then can analysts start to think of what the rest of the 21st Century is going to look like.

Anticipation is high and for some, a reason for optimism in a world where possibly America and Russia could start to agree on a variety of issues.

One of many losers could be Britain particularly due to the issue of the alleged Novichok poisoning’s in Salisbury, England.

A few months ago Britain’s Daily Telegraph newspaper published an opinion piece by then BritishForeign Secretary Boris Johnson describing the military grade nerve-agent attack as one in a long line of assassinations by Russia in Britain, without, in the Salisbury cases, Johnson providing any evidence whatsoever. Johnson is no longer a Minister; he’s gone for good soon to be followed by Prime Minister May many people speculate.

So a most unfortunate prediction one can make today is the possibility of a potential much weakened, politically, Britain a result of any form of rapprochement between America and Russia. A sad end of the empire that once was Great Britain.

We live in interesting times!

Posted in WorldComments Off on July 2018 Sets the Scene for the World in the 21st Century?

NATO Summit Declaration. Hostile to Russia, Signed by All Member States

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Following day-one of July 11 and 12 summit talks in Brussels, NATO issued a declaration, signed by all member state leaders, including Trump and Turkey’s Erdogan.

It’s unacceptably hostile to Russia – “accusing us of provocative activities and…gnashing its teeth,” according to its Foreign Ministry.

The  lengthy declaration, prepared ahead of the summit, accused Russia of occupying Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova. It turned truth on its head claiming Moscow “illegitimate(ly) annex(ed) Crimea.” A further litany of Big Lies about Russia followed.

The summit declaration criticized Moscow’s legitimate defensive military activities in its own territory, threatening no one – unlike US-dominated NATO, threatening world peace and stability, waging endless wars of aggression against sovereign nations.

The declaration accused Russia of “aggressive actions, including the threat and use of force to attain political goals, challenge the Alliance and…undermining Euro-Atlantic security and the rules-based international order” – a bald-faced lie!

It pretended opposition to “(t)errorism in all its forms and manifestations” its member states support, heavily arming ISIS and likeminded jihadists, using them as imperial proxies in Syria, Iraq and elsewhere.

The declaration turned truth on its head, claiming

“NATO…strive(s) for peace, security, and stability in the whole of the Euro-Atlantic area…united in our commitment to…the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations.”

Polar opposite is true. US-dominated NATO aggression shows what the alliance is all about – hostile to what it claims to support.

NATO is an aggressive imperial alliance, not a “defensive” one as falsely claimed. There are no external threats against its members – nothing justifying its existence.

Claiming the alliance “face(s) a dangerous, unpredictable, and fluid security environment, with enduring challenges and threats from all strategic directions; from state and non-state actors; from military forces; and from terrorist, cyber, and hybrid attacks” is a bald-faced lie.

So is accusing Russia of “aggressive actions, including the threat and use of force to attain political goals.”

Cold, hard reality is inimical to NATO’s belligerent agenda. A phony Russia threat, a phony terrorist threat, and so forth are convenient pretexts for continuing a US-dominated alliance, used as an instrument of its aggressive imperial agenda.

Ahead of summit talks, hawkish neocon US envoy to NATO, former senator Kay Bailey Hutchison, turned truth on its head claiming Moscow is trying to “flip” Turkey and other alliance members, adding the Kremlin “want(s) to destabilize the strongest defense alliance in the history of the world” – a killing machine, she failed to explain.

As long as NATO exists, endless US-led wars of aggression will continue. World peace and stability will remain unattainable.

*

Stephen Lendman is a Research Associate of the CRG, Correspondent of Global Research based in Chicago.

VISIT MY NEW WEB SITE: stephenlendman.org (Home – Stephen Lendman). Contact at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net.

My newest book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Posted in USA, Europe, NATOComments Off on NATO Summit Declaration. Hostile to Russia, Signed by All Member States

Zionist Trump Threatens End of NATO Alliance

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As Trump Threatens End of NATO Alliance, UK Defence and Security at Risk Given Israeli Involvement?

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The British government, having ignored warnings about the wisdom of allowing the non-EU, non-NATO member, Israel, to be a contractor to the UK Ministry of Defence, now faces the possibility of a seriously compromised national security.

Israeli Likud leader, Binyamin Netanyahu, is Trump’s nuclear lapdog in the Middle East and the Israeli position as a Defence Contractor to the British Armed Forces is now a serious embarrassment and a potential danger to the UK.

For our national defence to be in the hands of the only secret nuclear weapon state in the world with an estimated 400 undeclared warheads, and one that treats the UN with open contempt, was always a dangerous miscalculation. Now, with a rift having been opened between US-Israel and Europe, all military co-operation is suspect and Britain could become dangerously exposed.

The current trade war with the United States has shown, beyond doubt, how international relations can change overnight and when they do it is imperative that Britain’s security is not dependent on an American vassal state in the Middle East.

The government needs to take action now by putting an immediate embargo on all bilateral military trade and co-operation with the state of Israel and to deal only with EU/ NATO member suppliers and contractors.

We would not allow Russian President Putin to attend a COBRA meeting, in Parliament, and neither must we allow Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, who represents over a million ethnic Russian Israeli citizens and who is so closely allied with his armaments supplier and logistics director, Donald John Trump, TV game show host, property developer and current President of the United States.

*

Hans Stehling (pen name) is an analyst based in the UK. He is a frequent contributor to Global Research. 

Posted in USA, NATOComments Off on Zionist Trump Threatens End of NATO Alliance

Seanad Éireann in Solidarity with Palestine: Irish Senate Votes in Favour of Occupied Territories Bill

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Yesterday the Irish Seanad voted in favour of the Occupied Territories Bill which will prohibit the importation of goods or services from illegal settlements in occupied territories, including Israel’s settlements in Palestine which violate the Geneva Conventions. The Bill was introduced by the well-known Irish singer Frances Black whose albums feature both Irish ballads and traditional music. She was elected to Seanad Éireann as an independent Senator on her first attempt in 2016.

The Ireland-Palestine Solidarity Campaign welcomed the Seanad vote (25 in favour, 20 against) in support of Senator Frances Black’s ‘Control of Economic Activities (Occupied Territories) Bill. According to the IPSCChairperson, Ms. Fatin Al Tamimi (a Palestinian-Irish citizen):

“We in the IPSC, and Palestinians around the world, warmly welcome this historic vote, the first of its kind in any Western country. Once again, Ireland is making history and leading the way in its solidarity with the Palestinian people. We thank and salute all those Senators and parties who have pledged to support the Bill, and we will be asking the Irish people to ensure that these politicians support its passage at all stages of the lawmaking process.”

Black has been campaigning for some time now for the rights of the Palestinian people. She states:

“I have long been passionate about the struggle of the Palestinian people, which shows clearly how trade in settlement goods sustains injustice. In the occupied territories, people are forcibly kicked out of their homes, fertile farming land is seized, and the fruit and vegetables produced are then sold on Irish shelves to pay for it all. We condemn the settlements as illegal but support them economically. As international law is absolutely clear that the settlements are illegal, then the goods they produce are the proceeds of crime. We must face up to this – we cannot keep supporting breaches of international law and violations of human rights.”

Video: Frances Black discusses the Bill that would support banning goods from Israel’s settlements.

According to an explanatory note on the bill’s main provisions:

“Under international criminal law, the transfer by a State of its civilian population into a territory it has militarily occupied is a ‘war crime’, as well as a ‘grave breach’ of international humanitarian law. Importantly, it is also a crime under Irish law, no matter where in the world it is committed. Ireland has a duty to ensure these laws are respected and to uphold the humanitarian principles outlined in them. To this end, the Control of Economic Activity (Occupied Territories) Bill 2018 seeks to prohibit trade with and economic support for illegal settlements in territories deemed occupied under international law. It would restrict the import and sale of goods produced in such settlements, Irish involvement in the provision of services in such settlements, and the extraction of resources from occupied territories without the consent of the legitimate authority of that territory. This economic support underpins the long-term continuation of illegal settlements, established in clear violation of international law. In tabling this bill we are stating that Ireland should not provide economic or political support for them, wherever they arise.”

The Bill, inter alia, specifically covers the importation and sale of settlement goods:

“6. Importation of settlement goods

(1) It shall be an offence for a person to import or attempt to import settlement goods.

(2) It shall be an offence for a person to assist another person to import or attempt to import settlement goods.

(3) For the purpose of the Customs Act 2015, the import of settlement goods is hereby prohibited.

7. Sale of settlement goods

(1) It shall be an offence for a person to sell or attempt to sell settlement goods.

(2) It shall be an offence for a person to assist another person to sell or attempt to sell settlement goods.”

Many Irish politicians believe that the passing of the Occupied Territories Bill will send a strong message that the issue of illegal settlements is being taken seriously and needs to be addressed.

The Israeli Embassy in Ireland has been highly critical of the Bill and commented that:

“The absurdity in the Seanad Éireann initiative is that it will harm the livelihoods of many Palestinians who work in the Israeli industrial zones affected by the boycott.”

However, the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) is a Palestinian-led movement for freedom, justice and equality. BDS upholds the simple principle that Palestinians are entitled to the same rights as the rest of humanity. It was Palestinian Civil Society that called for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel as a form of non-violent pressure on Israel until it complies with international law and universal principles of human rights in 2005.

Source: Trocaire

Earlier this month former Pink Floyd star Roger Waters urged people to support the Occupied Territories Bill 2018 at a concert in Dublin.

Ms. Fatin Al Tamimi also commented that:

“These have been great months for Palestine in Ireland, a country which punches well above its weight when it comes to solidarity. At least seven local councils have voted to support the Palestinian-led global Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, including Dublin, the first EU capital to take this stand, and most recently Mid-Ulster Council and Fermanagh & Omagh District Council.”

She said that last month saw the launch of a campaign for an Irish boycott of Eurovision 2019 and noted that barely a week goes by without solidarity vigils or protests outside shops selling Israeli products in Ireland.”

As the activist for Palestinian human rights, Professor Mazin Qumsiyeh says:

“I find that ingenuity in resistance, the ability to persevere — what we call sumud — to be tremendously inspiring. Our people are able to continue their lives despite the incredible odds arrayed against them and not only to persist but also to find some measure of success. As the graffiti on the wall says, to live is to resist.”

Posted in Palestine Affairs, Europe, ZIO-NAZIComments Off on Seanad Éireann in Solidarity with Palestine: Irish Senate Votes in Favour of Occupied Territories Bill

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