Archive | January 27th, 2012

UK Government Suppresses Truth


by Stephen Lendman


Press TV broke the news headlining, “Ofcom revokes Press TV’s UK license,” saying:

In a questionable move and without offering a valid response to the Press TV CEO’s letters, the British Office of Communications (Ofcom)” pulled the plug disgracefully.

After threatening it for months, it “removed the channel from the Sky platform.”

Britain’s decision came at its highest levels. Likely Prime Minister David Cameron was involved. Suppressing truth burnished Britain’s credentials as a reliable axis of evil partner, together with America and Israel. Expect much worse ahead from all three.

Revoking Press TV’s license was clear irresponsible censorship. Doing so suppressed truth. UK television viewers were deprived of real news, information, commentary and analysis.

Fortunately, they have options. They can still follow Press TV online, through below listed web sites, or by satellite as follows:

How to watch Press TV in the UK:

Hot Bird 8 (13E)





Eurobird 1 (28.5E)










The following web sites also carry it worldwide:

Zattoo (Internet platform and IPTV. Supports PC, MAC, Linux and all tablet PCs and smartphones) (UK)

OHTV Box (Internet Set-top box) (Worldwide)

Roku Box (Internet Set-top box) (Worldwide) (Available in UK from January 2012)

Livestation (Internet platform. Supports PC MAC, Linux and all tablet PCs and smartphones)

In addition, they can use Press TV’s web site:

Available 24-hours a day, it’s a simple click-and-use way to follow Press TV regularly.

At issue is its even-handed coverage, real news and information, anti-imperial Middle East reporting, and accurate accounts about “British police crackdowns on anti-austerity protesters in London and other cities.”

In addition, Ofcom is close to Britain’s royal family. WikiLeaks cables disclosed its anger over Press TV’s coverage of Prince William/Kate Middleton’s wedding extravaganza.

Indeed so. Estimates ranged from $5 – $50 billion because a national holiday shut down Britain’s economy. Activity ground to a halt. Workers lost pay, and security costs were huge. Thousands of police (perhaps on overtime) and other measures were employed.

Last April,this writer discussed it on Press TV, saying: (

With Britain’s economy weak and declining, the spectacle was “shocking and disgusting.” It was “an extravagant waste of money” while “popular needs go begging.”

Contemptuous of people needs, “rich folks cavort with unlimited amounts of money. It’s the same in America as Britain.”

In January, Press TV CEO Mohammad Sarafraz wrote Ofcom. He questioned its independence because Britain’s Secretary of State has hiring and firing authority over its chairman and staff.

Ofcom’s also beholden to “loans and Grant-in-Aid from the British Government.”

In addition, he raised a “glaring contradiction,” saying:

“Ofcom wants to revoke” Press TV’s license because it determined that it “does not have control over the broadcast. Yet at the same time, Ofcom” fines Press TV for something it “says it has no control over!”

Ofcom’s action is a “futile….attempt to conceal the truth from the people of Britain, and those that want to hear our alternative voice will find a way despite your efforts.”

Viewers React

Comments Press TV received included the following:

“Nimco: What do we expect. Sky TV is owned by Rupert Murdoch, a known Zionist and Islamophobe. But the truth is stronger than hate. Press TV will prevail in the end.”

Samy: This is a joke. Other channels have done worse things than what they say about Press TV, and they have not had their license revoked. I will cancel my Sky account. I wish more people will do that. Where is their freedom of speech then???

James: Britain could not compete with Press TV and so took it down.

Sharon: Press TV has done a brilliant job showing this Royal Family’s true colors….Ofcom is obeying their freemason masters and doing what they are told.

Ryan: Today is a sad day for us Brits as Press TV was wrongly taken off the air….However, this is not going to stop me watching online.

British-Pakistani: Ofcom can’t silence the truth.

Seektruth: My Sky subscription is now cancelled.

BritishIdiots: This is how (UK) democracy works (by) bombing children and women.

yenda rasta: This action (is) how communist regimes behind the iron curtain” operated. It’s the same in Britain.

Hassan: One of the best sources of information in UK is Press TV. Shame on UK.

Citizen of the World-UK: This is a black day for freedom of speech….There is NO FREEDOM OF SPEECH in this country….I cancelled my Sky account after their reporting on Gaza….Thank you Press TV.”

For reporting accurately on major issues, Press TV deserves praise. Why else would Britain ban it?

Northern Ireland political analyst Saeb Shaath called doing so “a gross reminder of the Spanish inquisition” to silence free speech and truth. That’s what “scared them.”

It’s “an international and imperialist war against the freedom of expression, and all that is coming to deny Iran the ability of expressing really what is happening in Iran and the motives behind imperialist forces (to) attack a country (that) never for the last three hundred years attacked anyone” except in self-defense “against aggressors.”

Major Media Reaction

True to form, US major media scoundrels marched in lockstep with Ofcom. New York Times writer Ravi Somaiya headlined, “Britain Revokes Iranian TV Network’s License,” saying:

“Britain’s media regulator revoked” Press TV’s license, “saying the network had failed to address concerns over its editorial independence and had not paid a fine.”

The Washington Post ran an AP article headlined, “British regulator revokes license of Iran’s English-language Press TV,” saying:

“Ofcom said it was not convinced the station, an arm of the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting, had control over the programs it aired….Press TV called the decision ‘a clear instance of censorship.’ ”

Wall Street Journal writers Paul Sonne and Farnaz Fassihi headlined, “Tehran’s TV Channel Loses British License,” saying:

“….Ofcom realized editorial control of Press TV rested with the broadcaster’s headquarters in Tehran, rather than with its operations in London.”

CNN headlined, “UK revokes Iranian network’s license,” regurgitating comments like above.

MSNBC ran a Reuters article doing the same thing. So did Murdoch’s Fox News, adding: “It is a crime in Britain to broadcast without a license.” It’s true as well for truth and full disclosure reporting. They’re also suppressed in America, especially on Fox.

For years, America’s major media scoundrels waged war on Iran. Supportively, they back Washington’s regime change plans. They also misreport, distort, and cheerlead all US imperial wars.

London Guardian writer Mark Sweney headlined, “Iran’s Press TV loses UK license,” saying:

“….Ofcom revoked its license for breaching the Communications Act. (It) found that Press TV’s practice of running its editorial oversight from Tehran….is in breach of broadcasting license rules in the UK.”

“Hadi Ghaemi, director of the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran, welcomed Ofcom’s decision. ‘It’s about time for the Iranian government to pay a price for its reliance on broadcasts to commit and promote egregious human-rights crimes.’ ”

Britain’s state owned BBC regurgitated Ofcom’s fabrication about “breach(ing) several broadcasting license rules over editorial control of the channel.” Why not? They were told what to report and did so.

In contrast, Russia Today quoted Press TV calling Ofcom’s revocation “a clear act of censorship.” UK media analyst Phil Rees said it was geopolitically motivated, saying:

“Press TV has been viewed through geopolitical terms – and there is a breakdown of relations between Britain and Iran. Press TV’s journalism is not viewed (as) journalism, but….in terms of British-Iranian relations.”

“Most of the criticisms of Press TV have been due to its coverage, because it sees the Middle East very differently than the mainstream media in Britain.”

He called taking it off air a “tragedy.”

Journalist/Press TV host Yvonne Ridley was quoted saying “the so-called ‘free democracies’ don’t like the truth, and they will go to extraordinary levels of censorship to stop what they see as criticism of the way they run their governments.”

Truth and full disclosure got Press TV’s license pulled, not breaching UK law. Moreover, British government owned, funded and controlled BBC operates out London. By Ofcom’s reasoning, perhaps its license should be revoked. Former viewers and listeners wanting real news and information would applaud.

In July 2009, the Guardian published Press TV’s Roshan Muhammed Salih op-ed headlined, “Press TV speaks for itself,” saying:

Britain’s media calls Press TV Iran’s “mouthpiece. (It’s) hypocritical in the extreme, as exemplified by a sneering (BBC) Newsnight report, several offensive articles by rightwing commentators, and most recently a misleading post by Seth Freedman on Comment is free.”

Spurious accusations include being “Iran’s mouthpiece, (a) Holocaust denier, (and) fail(ing) to cover (Iran’s 2009) elections fairly.”

“All you need to do is watch the channel to realize that Press TV gives a platform to a wide diversity of views – pro-Israel and anti-Iranian government among them.” It does the same for Hamas, Hezbollah and other voices excluded from major media spaces.

Former UK MP/Press TV host George Galloway said:

Ofcom’s decision is “not about media regulation. All sorts of foreign TV channels are modeled along the same lines as Press TV.”

In addition, many “obscene sex channels operate under Ofcom’s nose, and they’re free to do so. Our crime at Press TV is not only that we are telling the truth that most other broadcasters deliberately conceal, but we were becoming more and more popular.”

Britain’s hypocritical stance on free speech belies its actions. “We’re actually told here in Britain that we go to war to bring such freedoms to them.”

Ofcom officials are “highly paid servants of the British state. They’re not independent as this action makes clear.” In fact, WikiLeaks cables revealed that UK and US officials “discussed how to put Press TV off the air.” The London Times “quoted a highly placed Foreign Office official saying efforts were being made to take Press TV off the air.”

“This was long before any questions” Ofcom raised in its complaints. “They were out to get us because we were achieving more and more a greater share of the audience.”

Viewers follow Press TV because “it’s a voice for the voiceless. God willing, it will continue to be.”

“If you were drawing up a list of Press TV ‘crimes,’ ” how it covers Israel/Palestine “is right up at the top.” For years, “Ofcom harassed Press TV on (this) issue….”

Truth is widely suppressed in UK media. “The cat’s chorus of conformity….is already becoming infamous around the world,” including on BBC. More recently, it became “the Bush and Blair” operation, “and hasn’t recovered. It’s absolutely craven in front of power.” Of course, Britain “controls their purse” and with it their content. The “same goes for Ofcom.”

A Final Comment

Press TV interviews this writer often. It provides a platform to speak openly and freely on many topics. Other independent writers, authors, academics and analysts also appear regularly. BBC and America’s major media exclude them.

WikiLeaks cables revealed that Britain’s Foreign Office told Washington’s London embassy that it was exploring ways to ban Press TV.

It provides real news, information, commentary and analysis. Airing 24 hours a day in English in most parts of the world, viewers can follow it by satellite, cable or online. Its US presence is limited through intermediary companies.

Major cable operators Comcast and Time Warner banned it. So did media conglomerates Disney, Viacom and Fox.

Controlled and funded by Britain’s government, BBC’s an imperial tool. Throughout its history, it’s suppressed information, commentaries and analysis critical of its policies.

America’s major media long ago abandoned truth, including on state-controlled National Public Radio and Public Broadcasting. It’s true as well in Britain, especially on government-run BBC.

In contrast, Press TV, Russia Today and Voice of Russia air diverse discussions and opinions on major global issues.

UK and US viewers can access all three online. Do so daily for real information and analysis to stay current and well informed – free from Western propaganda.

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Zionist Bicom Teams Up With Ofcom to Silence Press TV


By Ismail Salami


Eventually but not surprisingly, Britain capitulated to an urging demand long wished for and much desired by the Royal family to silence Press TV in the UK thanks to the unflagging efforts of the servile media supervisory office known as Ofcom.

The British Office of Communications (Ofcom) revoked Press TV’s broadcasting license on Friday and the channel was consequently removed from the Sky platform.

It is painful to see that there is zero tolerance for truth and freedom of speech in the UK which has been crowing about human rights and freedom of speech.

However, it is more painful to learn that the decision made by the Office of Communication (Ofcom) arises out of purely political concerns. An office with intimate ties to the Royal Family, Ofcom has issued the verdict under the sway of some influential parties in the government and the Bicom firm to boot.

Bicom (Britain Israel Communications & Research Centre) is a London-based company funded by Israel. Tasked with inseminating the Zionist political ideology, Bicom also funds those who are in one way or another involved with anti-Iran activities. Bicom is in fact a front organization with a variety of tasks including security and intelligence activities as well as the promotion of Zionism. Apart from garnering support for the Zionist regime among Britons, the office also serves as a bridge between the Mossad and MI6.

The CEO of the office, Lorna Fitzsimons, a former MP, is noted for her constant support for the Zionists. She used to be a member of the campaign group, Labor Friends of Israel (LFI). It is basically a lobby group promoting Zionism within the British Labor Party in particular and in Britain, in general.

In October 2011, there was a major scandal in Britain which led to the forced resignation of British Defense Minister Liam Fox. An unofficial chief of staff to the wretched minister and his best man, Adam Werritty accompanied him on a number of official visits and virtually made all his decisions. Interestingly, he had in February (2011) arranged a meeting between Fox and senior Mossad agents at a security conference taking place in Herzliya, near Tel Aviv, where they explored ways to overthrow the ‘Iranian regime’.

Reports also suggest that Werritty had regularly met Iranian anti-government groups, Israeli agents and right-wing US groups with a long-standing interest in subverting President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and overthrowing the Islamic government.

On several occasions, Werritty had travelled to Iran and held secret meetings with opposition groups with the express intention of conspiring against the Islamic government. Interestingly, MI6 was informed of his connections and debriefed him after he returned from overseas trips.

Werritty was financially backed by murky sources such as Bicom. And he was considered an influential member of the organization and a highly regarded agent for Mossad.


With anti-Iran sabotage activities high on its agenda, Bicom has worked closely with Ofcom towards eliminating a critical voice: Press TV.

Needless to say the Zionist Bicom has been influential on Ofcom’s verdict. Another piece of evidence which points to a pervasively powerful proclivity for the removal of the channel from the Sky platform in the UK pertains to a Wikileaks cable dated December 6, 2010 which not only confirms the political nature of Ofcom’s verdict but it also suggests a labyrinthine conspiracy.

The cable reveals a secret meeting held on February 3, 2010 where Jaime Turner, Deputy Head of Multilateral Affairs at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s Iran Group, briefed Poloff, Iran Watcher at the US Embassy in London on Press TV.

Turner reveals how the British government is looking for effective ways to muzzle the channel, “The British government is exploring ways to limit the operations of IRIB’s Press TV service, which operates a large bureau (over 80 staff) in London. However, UK law sets a very high standard for denying licenses to broadcasters. Licenses can only be denied in cases where national security is threatened, or if granting a license would be contrary to Britain’s obligations under international law. Currently, neither of these standards can be met with respect to Press TV, but if further sanctions are imposed on Iran in the coming months, a case may be able to be made on the second criterion.”

With the closure of Press TV’s office in London and the removal of the channel from the Sky platform, Britain is now deluded into believing that her efforts have resulted in splendid fruits and that she has been able to gratify the whims of the Zionists.

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Killing Obama – United States vs. Andrew Adler


Why is Neither the Jewish Org Community or the Media Checking Into Andrew Adler’s Background?

by  Jim W. Dean


Who is Really Messing With whom?

There is something fishy about this Andrew Adler ‘Kill Obama’ case. It came out of the blue…from a small below the radar Jewish publication, but from a major city, Atlanta. Why now, and why Andrew Adler?

The next thing that was extremely unusual was how quickly and completely so many major Jewish organizations dumped on this guy…almost all of them in one day. And their language was very harsh.

And then something else very strange, despite all the media coverage, where is the media digging out everything on our Andrew Adler life’s.

I have found nothing mentioned about him earlier than when he acquired the Atlanta Jewish Times, almost like it got off a space ship before that. And even more strange, no one seems to be asking any questions.

These Jewish groups are very networked. Someone not only pressed a button on Alder, but they also wrote some of the scripting so all the groups would be on the same tone. This story is oozing of a set up and orchestration.

Here are some samples:

Editor’s note:  Seems a bit late for Adler’s handlers to try to cover their behinds on this one.  Adler was only doing what he was told, we all know that.

Abe ‘da Fox’ Foxman

Abe Foxman of the ADL:  “…raises serious questions as to whether he’s fit to run a newspaper…There is absolutely no excuse, no justification, no rationalization for this kind of rhetoric. It doesn’t even belong in fiction. These are irresponsible and extremist words. It is outrageous and beyond the pale”

Dov Wilker, director of the American Jewish Committee in Atlanta…”shocking, beyond belief…we are flabbergasted that he could ever say such a thing in the first place. How could he even conceive of such a twisted idea?”

Simon Wiesenthal Center associate dean Rabbi Abraham Cooper:  “…irresponsible and reprehensible” and said they “must be publicly condemned by Jewish leaders across the ideological and political spectrum…— what a shanda!”

Ophir Aviran, the Israeli consul-general in Atlanta:  … as saying he was “appalled at this deranged and morally repugnant assertion.”

The National Jewish Democratic Council blasted Adler’s column, calling in the “height of irresponsibility.”…“To dare to give such despicable ideas space in a newspaper … is beyond the pale,” said NJDC President David A. Harris in a statement.

Atlanta Federation marketing director Tali Benjamin. “We don’t agree with his sentiment.”

An anomaly example would be your seeing this photo in American media – Hebron settlers (many of them Americans), including the kid, roughing up this Palestinian woman. You could rightly assume that someone goofed up.

Ah…a ‘sentiment’ is it? The last comment was the most moderate I have found. Now for a little background.

In Counter Intel work looking for anomalies is a constant focus. What is unusual that you can see that looks out of place, and then also what is missing which should be there…are always on your radar. That is the air you breathe.

The first thing I see that really looks out of place is having these groups commenting at all, especially the big ones.

Whenever a scandal of any sort pops up in the Jewish community, ‘mums the word’.

They know that the influence that they claim not to have in the media will see to it that anything stupid that someone did will die on the vine, or at least stay local.

Here in Atlanta, no one really knew about this story until the national reaction took place. So what was going on here? Answer, the national Jewish community was making it a national story.

Second, if someone in the community has to be paddled, doing it in excess is not the style. Why? They don’t like to set the example that harsh words or treatment are EVER permissible. Folks outside the community might get that wrong idea that they could do it.

For example, in the list above are two of the largest, most well funded hate groups in America. They are guilty of countless times more horrible things said and done than schlep of the day Mr. Adler.

Now for what is missing. First, the Intel community knows that threats have been made against Obama, his family actually, over certain major policy disputes involving a foreign country.

I will let you guess you that might be. You may be right, or you could be wrong.

Threats against a major politician’s family are only made from foreign intelligence agencies, or from shadow governments, ie., the criminal regimes that run most governments anyway.

If you wanted to ask me if family members of major U.S. politicians have been murdered to send a message, I would answer yes. As for who…this is not the time or place to discuss this.

Any major law enforcement who wants to know, already does. And you don’t know because they don’t want you to. It would tip you off that there are those running our top people that you mistakenly think are the top people.

And thirdly, after reading all the press reports I could find, something was really standing out like a flashing neon sign. The background on Mr. Andrew Adler before he took over the Atlanta Jewish Times…was…well…like zero.

That is not real world folks. You don’t have all these name Jewish orgs all stopping and turning on a dime to denounce this guy in the most harsh language I can ever remember.

No Jewish organization has denounced Israeli spy Pollard, who gave the Israelis Intel they passed on to the Soviets which gave them a first strike nuclear edge against the U.S.

Compare the rebuke that Alder has gotten to what Jonathan Pollard got from the same community. Is a light beginning to come on inside your head? Good for you.

It is inconceivable that Presidential threat like this would happen and here we are days later and not only is no history on this guy in any of the news, but  NO ONE IS EVEN ASKING!!!

That folks, is an anomaly…a glaring one. That so many are playing Mickey the Dunce tells me something else is afoot here.

A quick look at the Atlanta Jewish Times website and his staff revealed something else that was funny. With an estimated 3500 subscribers take a look at the staff.

It’s…ah….large. Anyone here at VT could run this thing out of their basement with a half day helper.

As for the office, the area they are in is very expensive, and this kind of work is made to order for telecommuting.

The readership of Veterans Today dwarfs these folks. We don’t have an office, and probably never will. Most of our staff and writers have never even seen each other, not counting our photos of course. We are all over the planet.

So what am I saying here? If I were working for an Intel agency, which I am not, and I was scoping Adler out as a ‘front’, all my bells and whistles would be going off. We have anomaly on top of anomaly here. Missing something that reeks like this would be grounds for finding another occupation.

The House of Blues

So…off to Google I went…my top secret source that I refuse to disclose, even under torture, and up pops The United States v. Andrew R. Alder, 1999.

It seems that back during the Atlanta Olympics days someone called Andrew Alder was involved in a very big T-shirt promotion case for a big downtown vendor, The House of Blues, owned by Disney back then, and has had an interesting pedigree of ownership since then.

Our Googling of Mr. Andrew Alder pretty much came up the Obama story only, and one small photo on his website with no middle name.

We had posted the case above originally and I put feelers out with some local Atlanta Jewish folks asking around if anyone could fill me in more on him. So far the well is dry there. But I did get feedback that Mr. Obama’s Andrew Alder was an Andrew B., so the Appeals Court case reference has been pulled while checking for any middle name changes which we are still trying to track down.

So far Mr. Alder has what we call a ghost profile, some bouncing around on some Jewish newspapers, but not even showing up in the Social Security name registry for Atlanta, a very odd profile for someone in media.

So, you might want to ask yourself, is there something here that does not meet the eye, maybe even several things going on? There are certain groups of people and orgs who look for people with a tainted past to do business with. They can have a tighter hold over them due to their past problems limiting employment opportunities.

Israelis Kill Americans? – They Already Have – A Lot of Them!!

Such people can be relied upon to pay back the kindness by being the fall guy on something not too serious, when needed and a cut out is required. A message gets sent that they want. The Lobby orgs all very publicly go one record as objecting to it so they have deniability.

But do any of these same people ever show up at a USS Liberty memorial event. Do they ever sign petitions against the Free Pollard movement? Have they not engaged in voting in Israel and the U.S. using their dual citizenships?

Do they not first and foremost put Israeli interests first and America’s second, by subverting our political process to the fullest of their abilities, just like you would expect a foreign intelligence agency would be expected to do?

So I have to close by asking, “Who is by far the bigger threat to America…just by looking at their past record and what is in our declassified intelligence material?’ And why are they not denounced as vociferously as they have denounced Andrew Adler, which may all be playacting on their part anyway.”

Posted in USA1 Comment

Egypt: A Year After January 25


It was a good day for the 1st anniversary of the beginning of the Egyptian insurrection. Most of the past week has been grey, cloudy, an early khamsin filling the air with desert dust. Last night early arrivers to Tahrir Square were welcomed with a shower. But today was almost balmy as we set out from Dokki, across two bridges, and then to Tahrir Square. In the long and narrow streets, rimmed by tall buildings, shouted slogans echoed up and down: “Down with military rule!


As we walked out from Dokki Square to the main street, the roar of the calls got louder and louder. A massive march was just ahead of us – easily 10,000 people. The participants were not really celebrating. They were protesting. As we got into the crowded mass of the march, more and more of the marchers were repeating the refrain. They know that the first stage of the struggle is very far from consummation. 10,000 political prisoners languish in prisons after having been tried before military tribunals. Over 1200 are dead, and they have not received justice. “The SCAF and the baltagiyya,” or the paid thugs of the military government, “are the same thing,” said one protester as I walked by.

Kasr el Nil

The press of people on Kasr El Aini, the bridge leading directly into the square, was tremendous: it took us an hour to cross it at a tortoise’s shuffle.

As we got closer to the square, those spoiling for more action hit into the festive effervescence of the Muslim Brothers. In the recent round of voting, they dominated, winning close to half of the seats. They have plenty of reason to celebrate and have called out their support base to do so. They are “a free-market party led by wealthy businessmen whose economic agenda embraces privatization and foreign investment.” And they are apprehensive about instability and are eager to get back to the work of businessmen: making money. Thus they are labeled “pragmatists” by the Obama government, which is set to increase the pace of aid deliveries to Egypt in an effort to bolster them.

Kasr el Nil

Understandably, those who look to further horizons were not happy with the celebratory mood. One chant I heard walking by was, “This is not a party, this is a revolution!” In front of the balustrades lining the road leading into Tahrir were numerous demonstrators holding placards of those who had been martyred in the Egyptian fight for freedom. A massive truck-borne obelisk listing every single martyrs’ name cut a swath through the human traffic blocking the square.

The Union of Revolutionary Youth have declared a sit-in in Tahrir. In Alexandria revolutionaries have given the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces until Friday to resign, and thus finish the bourgeois revolution, one that has been in stasis since the radical forces that could have brought it to fruition were destroyed in the years both immediately before and after 1952, leaving the state in the hands of the Free Officers who instituted the military junta that to this day rules Egypt. It’s a good sentiment, but the officers aren’t ensconced in Alexandria. They’re ensconced in Cairo. How to get them out of there is the question now facing those of the people of Egypt who wish to send the military back into the barracks, get it firmly under civilian control, and set to work to securing the goals of January 25, still hauntingly far a year later: bread, freedom, and social justice.


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And then do the same to all your neighbours?


By Stuart Littlewood

Stuart Littlewood highlights one of the most disgraceful and criminal aspects of the Israeli occupation, house demolitions, and stresses that “America and the rest of the West should understand clearly why Caterpillar has become the hated symbol of dispossession, ethnic cleansing and oppression, and has been the target of disinvestment campaigns”.

There can be few things more despicable than robbing a family of their home then destroying it in front of their eyes. But this is Israeli policy.

When the following news item arrived in my inbox I was more than usually interested. The Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD) took me to see Beit Arabiya, the much demolished and rebuilt Bedouin home, nearly six years ago. Of course, it has been bulldozed and rebuilt a few times since then.

I’m reproducing the whole thing so that you get the full flavour of Israel’s evil. And it’s from an impeccable Israeli source too.

You can also read it at here.

ICAHD Peace Center “Beit Arabiya” Demolished for the Fifth Time

24 January 2012

Israeli authorities demolished Beit Arabiya (“Arabiya’s House”) last night (Monday, January 23rd) for the fifth time, along with structures in the East Anata Bedouin compound.  Beit Arabiya, Located in the West Bank town of Anata (Area C) just to the northeast of Jerusalem, is a living symbol of resistance to Occupation and the desire for justice and peace.

As its name suggests, Beit Arabiya is a home belonging to Arabiya Shawamreh, her husband Salim and their seven children, a Palestinian family whose home has been demolished four times by the Israeli authorities and rebuilt each time by ICAHD’s Palestinian, Israeli and international peace activists, before being demolished again last night.

Salim and Arabiya in front of their home

Salim and Arabiya in front of their home

At around 11p.m. Monday, a bulldozer accompanied by a contingent of heavily armed Israeli soldiers appeared on the Anata hills, to promptly demolish Beit Arabiya, along with residential and agricultural structures in the nearby Arab al-Jahalin Bedouin compound. 3 family homes were demolished along with numerous animal pans, and 20 people including young children were displaced, left exposed to the harsh desert environment. While standing in solidarity with Palestinians, ICAHD staff and activists were repeatedly threatened by Israeli soldieries. ICAHD Co-Director Itay Epshtain was beaten and sustained minor injuries.

Beit Arabiya was issued a demolition order by Israeli authorities back in 1994, following their failure to grant a building permit. It has since been demolished four times, to be rebuilt by ICAHD activists. Following a reissue of the demolition order last Thursday, came last night’s fifth demolition. ICAHD Director, Dr. Jeff Halper, standing astride the ruins, vowed to support Salim and Arabiya in rebuilding their home. “We shall rebuild, we must rebuild forthwith, as an act of political defiance of the occupation and protracted oppression of Palestinians” said Halper.

Beit Arabiya has become a symbol of resistance to the Judaization of the Occupied West Bank and Israeli demolition policy. “ICAHD is as determined as always to rebuild the home, and endure in its struggle to bring about justice and peace” added Halper.

Salim and Arabiya, along with their neighbors and friends stood last night and watched as this tragedy unfold once again. Arabiya and Salim have dedicated their home as a center for peace in the memories of Rachel Corrie and Nuha Sweidan, two women (an American and a Palestinian) who died resisting home demolitions in Gaza. In the past decade ICAHD has hosted numerous visitors at Beit Arabiya, and based its annul rebuilding camp at the house, rebuilding 185 demolished Palestinian homes.

Only earlier this month, ICAHD extended an invitation to the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Adequate Housing to visit Beit Arabiya during her country visit to the Occupied Palestinian Territory scheduled for later in the month. “It is our hope, that while we cannot extend the same hospitality to the Special Raporteur Raquel Rolnik will visit the ruins of Beit Arabiya, and report on the utter cruelty, and illegality of Israeli policies and practices, and that members of the international community will follow in her footsteps”. ” said ICAHD Co-Director Itay Epshtain.

For more information and coordination of visits to Beit Arabiya, kindly contact Itay Epshtain at or +972-54-2623306

Additional Information

House demolitions and forced evictions are among Israel’s most heinous practices in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT). In 2011, a record year of displacement, a total of 622 Palestinian structures were demolished by Israeli authorities, of which 36 per cent  (or 222) were family homes; the remainder were livelihood-related (including water storage and agricultural structures), resulting in 1,094 people displaced, almost double the number for 2010. The Jordan Valley sustained the largest number of demolitions (32 per cent  of total structures demolished, 40 per cent  of residential structures demolished, 37 per cent  of people displaced), with 199 structures demolished and 401 people displaced.

Ruins of Beit Arabiya the morning after demolition

Ruins of Beit Arabiya the morning after demolition

Israel now controls 40 per cent  of the West Bank through 149 settlements and 102 outposts, housing more than 500,000 Jewish Israelis, as well as through closed military zones and declared nature reserves. In addition, house demolitions, forced evictions, and land expropriation, exacerbated by settler violence and the economic effects of movement restrictions, have left Palestinian communities struggling to make a living. Palestinians live in constant fear of displacement and dispersion, while Israel secures its domination and control.

The demolition of Palestinian homes is politically motivated and strategically informed. The goal is to confine the 4 million residents of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and Gaza to small enclaves, thus effectively foreclosing any viable Palestinian state and ensuring Israeli control, and to allow for the expropriation of land, the ethnic displacement of Palestinians, and the Judaization of the Occupied West Bank. 

The recent ICAHD report ‘The Judaization of Palestine: 2011 Displacement Trends’ provides a political analysis of the root causes and consequences of Israel’s house demolition policy, focusing on the demolition of Palestinian homes and other structures in the Occupied West Bank. Click here to read the report.

Back in 2006 I arranged to go on one of ICAHD’s tours of house demolition sites, a programme for journalists and students then run by one of Jeff Halper’s colleagues, another amiable American known to everyone as “JJ”.  I wrote it up for my book, Radio Free Palestine, as follows:

The tour with JJ took us to Anata… If you thought Jenin was bad, you should see Anata. This is a blighted and doomed Palestinian township, not shell-blasted like Jenin but strangulated, poverty-stricken, earmarked for destruction and on its last legs. There were umpteen demolition orders on Palestinian homes, some newly built.
Not content with persecuting the Palestinians, the Israelis are driving the Bedouin out of the Negev desert. “They are destroying our homes and stealing our land and trying to concentrate us in small reservations in order to take our land and give it to Jewish settlers. Some of these so-called unrecognized villages predated the state of Israel. I wonder who needs recognition from whom,” said Talab al-Sani’e, a Bedouin and a member of Israel’s Knesset. “Israel has created 140 Jewish towns and villages in the Negev. And now they want to destroy Bedouin villages.”

Mural on the gable end: the hated Caterpillar, weapon of mass destruction

Israel stands accused of illegally confiscating more than 98 per cent of Bedouin land and committing “ugly acts of racism” against Bedouins. Israeli aircraft sprayed herbicides over large areas of crops belonging to Bedouin tribes in the Negev for over 10 years. This was stopped after Bedouin leaders and human rights activists petitioned the Israeli high court, citing the herbicides’ harmful effect on humans and animals. After the court ruling the Israeli Land Authority turned to using tractors to destroy the crops just before harvest time, according to Bedouin leaders. “They refuse to connect our villages with the national power grid, they refuse to connect us with the national water carrier, they refuse to allow us to open streets. Our children are denied schooling.”

Meeting and shaking hands with peace campaigner Jeff Halper, a professor of anthropology at Ben Gurion University and director of ICAHD, was for me a high point of my visit to the Holy Land. An American Jew, Jeff went to live in Israel in 1973 after attending rabbinical school. He had been a Vietnam war resister, and when he became an Israeli citizen he refused to bear arms during his military service and refused to serve in the occupied territories.

ICAHD works with other Israeli groups such as Bat Shalom, Rabbis for Human Rights, Taayush and Gush Shalom, and with Palestinian organizations. ICAHD resists the demolition of Palestinian homes, with Jeff himself frequently confronting the bulldozers and Israeli soldiers. He and ICAHD organize Palestinians, Israelis and internationals in rebuilding some of the demolished homes to underline their political resistance to the occupation. Their deep knowledge and research has successfully exposed the injustice.

He and his Palestinian counterpart, Ghassan Andoni, a physics professor at Birzeit University and co-founder of the Palestinian Centre for Rapprochement between People, were both nominated for the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize. In response to the nomination Professor Halper said:

I am chilled by the prospect of my country imposing a new apartheid regime on another people, by the prospect of my people, the Jews (of all people), becoming the new Afrikaaners. I must also be concerned over the rising frustration and fury in the Arab and Muslim worlds, fuelled in large measure by American and European support for Israel’s occupation policies that both deny the Palestinians their right of self-determination and turn my country into a pariah state.

ICAHD, as Israelis, block the destructive bulldozers, chain themselves in the houses, conduct campaigns to mobilize opposition to the policy in Israel and abroad, turn to the courts and, when demolitions finally occur, join the Palestinians in rebuilding demolished homes to show solidarity and resistance.

Anata kids: but they had nothing to smile about really – the fine homes in the background were all scheduled for demolition by Israel

We have come to see house demolitions as the very essence of the conflict between our two peoples: Israel’s exclusive claim to the entire country in the name of the Jewish people at the expense of another people living in the country … thisis what gives the policy of house demolitions its special significance.

When, as Israelis, we resist home demolitions and rebuild demolished homes as acts of civil disobedience, we are acknowledging the rights of both people to share the country. We are affirming our recognition that Palestinian claims carry equal authority to our own. And we are proclaiming loudly: We refuse to be enemies!

God bless Jeff and ICAHD. If in Jerusalem be sure to visit this remarkable man and his organization

What it’s like to be on the receiving end of an Israeli demolition order

Here’s a further note from that visit to ICAHD:

Palestinians do not have the luxury of home-delivered mail (even in East Jerusalem), so demolition orders are distributed haphazardly. A building inspector may knock on the door and hand the order to anyone who answers, including small children. More often the order is slipped into the doorframe or left under a stone near the house. Palestinians frequently complain that they never received the order before the bulldozers moved in, and thus were denied recourse to the courts. In Jerusalem a favourite practice is to “deliver” an order at night by placing it somewhere near the targeted home, then arrive early in the morning with the Caterpillar.

America and the rest of the West should understand clearly why Caterpillar has become the hated symbol of dispossession, ethnic cleansing and oppression, and has been the target of disinvestment campaigns.

Posted in ZIO-NAZIComments Off on And then do the same to all your neighbours?

Changes in Syria will benefit IsraHell


Former MI Chief Amos Yadlin says unrest in Syria may push it out of radical axis naturally

“The changes in Syria bear strategic benefits for Israel,” former Military Intelligence Chief and Head of the Institute for National Security Studies Amos Yadlin said Thursday, at a seminar held at Tel Aviv University.   Yadlin said that “For many years defense and political officials recommended that Israel strike a peace deal with Syria, even if it entailed paying a heavy price. The justification was to pull it out of the radical Syria-Iran axis.

“This could happen today naturally, without us paying that price. Peace with Syria is needed regardless of recent events, but the process is positive,” he said.

Yadlin further predicted that the Syrian economy is heading for tough times: “There’s no tourism to speak of, investors are fleeing, there’s a big public deficit – the situation is unstable and the only thing that can make Syria bounce back is a fat Iranian check, something in the neighborhood of $3-$5 billion. But even if they get that and even if Assad falls – Syria will never be the same.”   Speaking of the Arab Spring, the former MI chief expressed hope that Iran will become part of the process: “The Arab Spring is cause for concern in Israel and we are willing to face the risks alongside the hope it arises.

“If the revolution finds its way to Tehran it could save Israel the huge dilemma of choosing between two alternatives – a viable nuclear Iran or preventing a nuclear Iran.”

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Russia to keep blocking UN sanctions on Syria


Associated Press

MOSCOW (AP) — Russia is standing firm on blocking any U.N. sanctions against Syria, its longtime ally and a significant arms customer, saying that any resolution by the world body must exclude the possibility of international military involvement such as in Libya.

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Wednesday that U.N. approval for sanctions against Syria mirroring those by other nations would be “unfair and counterproductive.”

The U.S., the European Union, the Arab League and Turkey all have introduced sanctions against Damascus in response to Syrian President Bashar Assad’s violent crackdown on opponents. The uprising has left more than 5,400 people dead, according to the U.N. estimates.

The U.N. Security Council has been unable to agree on a resolution since the violence began in March because of strong opposition from Russia and China.

Russia, resistant to what it believes to be Western hegemony, characteristically opposes interventionism and the imposition of sanctions. This week, it harshly criticized new European Union sanctions against Iran regarding its nuclear program.

Lavrov said Russia’s own draft of a U.N. resolution regarding Syria, which circulated earlier this month, remains on the table, and that Moscow is open for any “constructive proposals.” The draft calls on all parties to stop the violence, citing the “disproportionate use of force by Syrian authorities” and urging the Syrian government “to put an end to suppression of those exercising their rights to freedom of expression, peaceful assembly and association.”

But Western diplomats said the Russian proposal falls short of their demand for a strong condemnation of the Syrian regime’s crackdown.

Lavrov affirmed that any U.N. resolution must say clearly it “couldn’t be interpreted to justify any foreign military interference in the Syrian crisis.”

“We believe that our approach is fair and well-balanced, unlike the attempts to pass one-sided resolutions that would condemn only one party and, by doing so, encourage another one to build up confrontation and take an uncompromising stance,” Lavrov said after talks with Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu. “We have seen that in Libya, and we will not allow repetition of the Libyan scenario.”

Russia abstained in the U.N. vote authorizing military intervention in Libya, but harshly criticized NATO for what it saw as an excessive use of force and civilian casualties during the NATO bombing campaign against Moammar Gadhafi’s regime.

Rebels eventually overthrew Gadhafi with enormous military support from the Western alliance. NATO jets flew 26,000 sorties against Libya in 2011, destroying about 5,900 military targets.

Russian officials have strongly warned the West against emulating the Libyan strategy in Syria.

Lavrov called for a quick start of talks between the Syrian government and the opposition, suggesting they could be hosted by Egypt, the Arab League, Turkey or Russia.

Asked about the Arab League’s call Sunday for a unity government in Syria in two months, Lavrov said Russia believes the talks between the Syrian government and the opposition should start without any preconditions.

“We proceed from the assumption that all participants in such dialogue would seek to reach accord and show responsibility for the fate of the country and its people,” he said.

Gulf states led by Saudi Arabia have pulled out of the Arab League’s observers mission in Syria, asking the U.N. Security Council to intervene. But such action is unlikely with Russia’s opposition to sanctions.

Russia hosted some Syrian opposition leaders last fall, but its efforts to encourage them to sit down for talks with the government have brought no results.

Russia has been a strong ally of Syria since Soviet times, when Syria was led by the president’s father, Hafez Assad. It has supplied Syria with aircraft, missiles, tanks and other heavy weapons. The 27-nation EU, in contrast, has imposed an arms embargo against Syria.

Earlier this month, a Russian ship allegedly carrying tons of munitions made a dash for Syria after telling officials in EU member Cyprus, where it had made an unexpected stop, that it was heading to Turkey. Turkish officials said the ship went instead to the Syrian port of Tartus.

Lavrov said last week that Moscow doesn’t consider it necessary to offer an explanation or excuses over the incident, saying that Russia was acting in full respect of international law and wouldn’t be guided by unilateral sanctions imposed by other nations.

On Monday, a top Russian business daily reported that Moscow had signed a $550 million contract to sell 36 Yak-130 combat jets to Syria. The Russian state arms-trading company declined comment.

Fyodor Lukyanov, the editor of Russia in Global Affairs magazine, said the deal represented an eleventh-hour attempt by Moscow to take advantage of its role of Syria’s monopolist weapons supplier.

“Anticipating different possible scenarios, Russia is in a hurry to use the current status quo to pursue its commercial interests,” Lukyanov told the AP. “It would be a good contract if Assad stays on.”

He added that Russia realizes that its power is limited but has decided to back Assad, its last remaining ally in the region.

“An attempt to abruptly shift side and take a different stance in a hope to preserve some ground will be useless,” he said. “Even if Russia now backs the Syrian opposition, the new authorities wouldn’t need Russia anyway.”

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IsraHell Assassinations and American Presidents


by Alison Weir

On Jan. 13 the Atlanta Jewish Times featured a column by its owner-publisher suggesting that Israel might someday need to “order a hit” on the president of the United States.

In the column, publisher Andrew Adler describes a scenario in which Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu would need to “give the go-ahead for U.S.-based Mossad agents to take out a president deemed unfriendly to Israel.”

The purpose? So that the vice president could then take office and dictate U.S. policies that would help the Jewish state “obliterate its enemies.”

Adler wrote that it is highly likely that the idea “has been discussed in Israel’s most inner circles.”

Numerous Jewish leaders quickly condemned Adler, who has now apologized for the column, resigned, and put the newspaper up for sale. An Israeli columnist noted that the hatred being stirred up against Obama is similar to conditions in Israel that led to the murder of Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin by a Jewish extremist.

Many of those criticizing Adler claim that he defamed Israel by suggesting that it would ever do such a thing. Abe Foxman, head of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), proclaimed: “There is absolutely no excuse, no justification, no rationalization for this kind of rhetoric. It doesn’t even belong in fiction.”

In reality, however, Adler’s expectation that Israel’s inner circles have explored such a course of action, and would be willing to undertake it, may be entirely accurate. The fact is that Israel has killed and plotted to assassinate people throughout the world; a number have been Americans. One alleged plot was chillingly similar to Adler’s suggestion.

There is evidence that in 1991 an Israeli undercover team planned to assassinate a U.S. president. The intended victim was George Herbert Walker Bush.

The first person to write of the plot was a former 11-term Republican congressman from Illinois, Paul Findley. In a 1992 article in the Washington Report for Middle East Affairs, Findley described the alleged scheme and how it was revealed.

Findley wrote that the U.S. Secret Service had received a warning that elements of Israel’s spy agency might target Bush when he went to Madrid for the opening day of the peace conference to be held that year.

According to Findley, a former Mossad agent named Victor Ostrovsky, who had written a book exposing Israel’s spy agency, told a group of Canadian parliamentarians that he had received secret intelligence suggesting that the “the Mossad’s hatred of Bush — and support for Vice President Dan Quayle — might lead to an attempt on the president’s life.”

Israel considered Quayle much closer to Israel than Bush. Bush had particularly angered Israel by attempting to pressure Israel into ending its illegal settlement expansion on confiscated Palestinian land by withholding loan guarantees until Israel ended this practice.

Findley wrote that Ostrovsky’s statements were relayed to Findley’s friend and former colleague Paul“Pete” McCloskey, a prominent former Republican congressman from California who had recently been named by Bush to the National and Community Service Commission.

McCloskey, a decorated Marine veteran and graduate of Stanford Law School who had at one time been considered a presidential contender, flew to Ottawa to debrief Ostrovsky in person and evaluate his information.

Findley reported that Ostrovsky told McCloskey that the Mossad wanted “to do everything possible to preserve a state of war between Israel and its neighbors, assassinating President Bush, if necessary.” Ostrovsky said that a PR campaign was already underway in both Israel and the United States to “prepare public acceptance of Dan Quayle as president.”

Convinced that Ostrovsky was legitimate and his information significant, McCloskey jumped on the next flight to Washington, where he reported Ostrovsky’s intelligence to the Secret Service and State Department.

The apparent plot never went forward, perhaps because Ostrovsky and McCloskey had given it away.

Ostrovsky gave more details about the plot two years later in his 1994 book, The Other Side of Deception: A Rogue Agent Exposes the Mossad’s Secret Agenda, published by HarperCollins.

In the book, Ostrovsky wrote that an extremist group within Mossad was responsible for the plan. He said they kept the plan secret from then–Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir, though they believed that Shamir would have ordered such a hit himself if he hadn’t been constrained by politics. In the lead-up to Israel’s 1948 founding war, Shamir had headed up a terrorist group known for its assassinations.

In his review of Ostrovsky’s book, Ambassador Andrew Killgore, a retired career foreign service officer and publisher of the Washington Report, called the book an “insider’s probing exposé of some Middle East realities that have been hidden too long from all but Israeli eyes.”

Ostrovsky wrote that the Israelis planned a “false flag” operation, in which they would pin the assassination on Palestinians. They kidnapped three Palestinian militants from Beirut who were to be the scapegoats, took them to Israel’s Negev desert, and held them incommunicado.

“Meanwhile,” Killgore writes,“Mossad-generated threats on the president’s life, seemingly from Palestinians, were leaked. These were designed to throw suspicion on the organization of rogue Palestinian terrorist Abu Nidal. Names and descriptions of the three terrorists were leaked to Spanish police so that, if the plot was successful, blame would automatically fall on them.”

Ostrovsky reports that after the assassination plot was eventually canceled, the three Palestinian prisoners were “terminated.”

Targeting Americans

If the plot had gone forward, this would not have been the first time that Israel targeted Americans for death. Nor would it be the first false-flag operation.

• In 1954 the Mossad planned to firebomb American installations, libraries, and other gathering places in Egypt. The Muslim Brotherhood was to be blamed for the attacks, thus causing American animosity toward Egypt. An accidental early detonation of one of the devices caused the plot, known as the Lavon Affair, to unravel before it could kill or mutilate the intended Americans.

• In 1967 Israeli air and sea forces perpetrated an almost two-hour assault in which they tried to sink a U.S. Navy ship with a crew of 300. While the attack failed to sink the ship, it succeeded in killing 34 Americans and injuring 174. Some analysts have conjectured that this was also a false-flag operation; it is highly likely that Egypt would have been blamed for the attack if the ship had gone down.

• In 1973 Israeli fighter pilots were ordered to shoot down an unarmed U.S. reconnaissance plane (at the time the U.S. was delivering massive weaponry to Israel to prevent it from losing the “Yom Kippur War” with Egypt and Syria). While the Israelis were unable to reach the altitude of the U.S. plane, they did manage that same year to shoot down a civilian Libyan airlinerthat had strayed over Israeli territory, killing 104 men, women, and children. One was an American.

• In 1990 a Canadian-American scientist and father of seven, Gerald Bull, was assassinated in Belgium. All indications are that it was an Israeli Mossad hit team that drilled five bullets into the back of his head and neck. (Israel has assassinated a number of scientists of various nationalities. The most recent is a 32-year-old father of a young son from Iran.)

• In 2003 it came out that Israeli leaders had officially decided to undertake assassination operations on U.S. soil. An FBI spokesman, queried about the Israeli plans, said only: “This is a policy matter. We only enforce federal laws.”

• In recent years a growing number of American peace activistshave been intentionally killed, maimed, and injured by Israeli forces, including 23-year-old Rachel Corrie, 21-year-old Brian Avery, 37-year-old Tristan Anderson, 21-year-old Emily Henochowicz, and 21-year-old Furkan Dogan.

All of this has been minimally reported in the U.S. press. While major news organizations from England to Israel to Australia covered the Jewish Times’ apparent endorsement of a possible Israeli assassination of a U.S. president, the scandal has been largely missing from U.S. media. Even Atlanta’s AP bureau inexplicably initially decided not to write a report on it, only finally sending out a story many days later.

Such news omissions concerning Israeli partisans are not rare. In 2004 a fanatic Israel loyalist wrote a letter saying that he was going to burn down Presbyterian churches while worshippers were inside (he was furious at the Presbyterian Church’s decision to divest from companies profiting from the illegal Israeli occupation of Palestinian land). This grisly threat also received minimal media play.

Despite Israeli violence against Americans (even while American taxpayers have given far more of our tax money to Israel than to any other nation) American presidential candidates, with the exception of Ron Paul, continue to vie over who is most devoted to Israel.

It is ironic that Adler considers Obama so bad for Israel, given that Israeli analysts have rated him second only to Mitt Romney in his fidelity to Israel. And Obama has now released a seven-minute video that may catapult our first African-American president into first place in pandering to an apartheid nation.

Perhaps he’ll be safe from assassins.

Posted in CampaignsComments Off on IsraHell Assassinations and American Presidents

In Police Training, a Dark Film on U.S. Muslims


NY Times

Ominous music plays as images appear on the screen: Muslim terrorists shoot Christians in the head, car bombs explode, executed children lie covered by sheets and a doctored photograph shows an Islamic flag flying over the White House.

“This is the true agenda of much of Islam in America,” a narrator intones. “A strategy to infiltrate and dominate America. … This is the war you don’t know about.”

This is the feature-length film titled “The Third Jihad,” paid for by a nonprofit group, which was shown to more than a thousand officers as part of training in the New York Police Department.

In January 2011, when news broke that the department had used the film in training, a top police official denied it, then said it had been mistakenly screened “a couple of times” for a few officers.

A year later, police documents obtained under the state’s Freedom of Information Law reveal a different reality: “The Third Jihad,” which includes an interview with Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly, was shown, according to internal police reports, “on a continuous loop” for between three months and one year of training.

During that time, at least 1,489 police officers, from lieutenants to detectives to patrol officers, saw the film.

News that police trainers showed this film so extensively comes as the department wrestles with its relationship with the city’s large Muslim community. The Police Department offers no apology for aggressively spying on Muslim groups and says it has ferreted out terror plots.

But members of the City Council, civil rights advocates and Muslim leaders say the department, in its zeal, has trampled on civil rights, blurred lines between foreign and domestic spying and sown fear among Muslims.

“The department’s response was to deny it and to fight our request for information,” said Faiza Patel, a director at the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University Law School, which obtained the release of the documents through a Freedom of Information request. “The police have shown an explosive documentary to its officers and simply stonewalled us.”

Tom Robbins, a former columnist with The Village Voice, first revealed that the police had screened the film. The Brennan Center then filed its request.

The 72-minute film was financed by the Clarion Fund, a nonprofit group whose board includes a former Central Intelligence Agency official and a deputy defense secretary for President Ronald Reagan. Its previous documentary attacking Muslims’ “war on the West” attracted support from the casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, a major supporter of Israel who has helped reshape the Republican presidential primary by pouring millions of dollars into a so-called super PAC that backs Newt Gingrich.

Commissioner Kelly is listed on the “Third Jihad” Web site as a “featured interviewee.” Paul J. Browne, the Police Department’s chief spokesman, wrote in an e-mail that filmmakers had lifted the clip from an old interview. The commissioner, Mr. Browne said, has not asked the filmmakers to remove him from its Web site, or to clarify that he had not cooperated with them.

None of the documents turned over to the Brennan Center make clear which police officials approved the showing of this film during training. Department lawyers blacked out large swaths of these internal memorandums.

Repeated calls over the past several days to the Clarion Fund, which is based in New York, were not answered. The nonprofit group shares officials with Aish HaTorah, an Israeli organization that opposes any territorial concessions on the West Bank. The producer of “The Third Jihad,” Raphael Shore, also works with Aish HaTorah.

Clarion’s financing is a puzzle. Its federal income tax forms show contributions, grants and revenues typically hover around $1 million annually — except in 2008, when it booked contributions of $18.3 million. That same year, Clarion produced “Obsession: Radical Islam’s War Against the West.” The Clarion Fund used its surge in contributions to pay to distribute tens of millions of copies of this DVD in swing electoral states across the country in September 2008.

“The Third Jihad” is quite similar, in style and content, to that earlier film. Narrated by Zuhdi Jasser, a Muslim doctor and former American military officer in Arizona, “The Third Jihad” casts a broad shadow over American Muslims. Few Muslim leaders, it states, can be trusted.

“Americans are being told that many of the mainstream Muslim groups are also moderate,” Mr. Jasser states. “When in fact if you look a little closer, you’ll see a very different reality. One of their primary tactics is deception.”

The film posits that there were three jihads: One at the time of Muhammad, a second in the Middle Ages and a third that is under way covertly throughout the West today.

This is, the film claims, “the 1,400-year war.”

How the film came to be used in police training, and even for how long, was not clear. An undated memorandum from the department’s commanding officer for specialized training noted that an employee of the federal Department of Homeland Security handed the DVD to the New York police in January 2010. Since then, this officer said, the video was shown continuously “during the sign-in, medical and administrative orientation process.” A Department of Homeland Security spokesman said it was never used in its curriculum, and might have come from a contractor.

As it turned out, it was police officers who blew the whistle after watching the film. Late in 2010, Mr. Robbins contacted an officer who spoke of his unease with the film; another officer, said Zead Ramadan, the New York president of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, talked of seeing it during a training session the previous summer. “The officer was completely offended by it as a Muslim,” Mr. Ramadan said. “It defiled our faith and misrepresented everything we stood for.”

When the news broke about the movie last year, Mr. Browne called it a “wacky film” that had been shown “only a couple of times when officers were filling out paperwork before the actual course work began.”

He made no more public comments. Privately, two days later, he asked the Police Academy to determine whether a terrorism awareness training program had used the video, according to the documents.

The academy’s commander reported back on March 23, 2011, that the film had been viewed by 68 lieutenants, 159 sergeants, 31 detectives and 1,231 patrol officers. The department never made those findings public.

And just one week later, the Brennan Center officially requested the same information, starting what turned out to be a nine-month legal battle to obtain it.

“It suggests a broader problem that they refuse to divulge this information much less to discuss it,” Ms. Patel of the Brennan Center said. “The training of the world’s largest city police force is an important question.”

Mr. Browne said he had been unaware of the higher viewership of the film until asked about it by The New York Times last week.

There is the question of the officers who viewed the movie during training. Mr. Browne said the Police Department had no plans to correct any false impressions the movie might have left behind.

“There’s no plan to contact officers who saw it,” he said, or to “add other programming as a result.”

Posted in USAComments Off on In Police Training, a Dark Film on U.S. Muslims

Study: 20% of Germans harbor anti-Semitism


Surveys show about one-fifth of Germans agree with anti-Semitic statements, such as ‘Jews have too much power in business’


A new study by a Parliament-appointed commission shows 20% of Germans harbor “latent” anti-Semitism, but anti-Jewish crimes are almost exclusively committed by the far right.

Taboos Falling?    Jews divided over ‘Mein Kampf’ reprint  / AFP   As Holocaust survivors hit out at move, historians cheer news that Hitler’s anti-Semitic manifesto will be reprinted in Germany for first time since Nazi dictator’s fall in 1945. Head of Central Council of Jews grudgingly gives his approval

The 188-page report – which draws on several different surveys and other research – puts Germans in the middle of the pack in Europe, with a German university survey showing more latent anti-Semitism in countries such as Poland, Hungary and Portugal, and less in Italy, Britain, the Netherlands and France.

The study released Monday said the surveys show that about one-fifth of Germans agree with anti-Semitic statements, such as “Jews have too much power in business.” 

The study also showed that 90% of anti-Semitic crimes are committed by right-wing extremists, who number about 26,000 according to official estimates. 

It recommends better coordination of local, state and federal strategies to combat anti-Semitism.

The report makes reference to “a wider acceptance in mainstream society of day-to-day anti-Jewish tirades and actions”.

“Anti-Semitism in our society is based on widespread prejudices, deeply rooted clichés and on sheer ignorance about Jews and Judaism,” stated one of the report’s authors, Dr. Peter Longerich of the University of London, Holocaust Research Center.   The report cites the Internet as a contributing factor to the spread of anti-Semitic thought.

“With regard to modern forms of communication – we point to the Internet in particular – it is virtually impossible to prevent the spread of such thinking,” Longerich continued.

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