Sunday, June 27, 2010

Jewish Chronicle gets it all wrong



The Jewish Chronicle seems to be doing its best recently to match the rest of the main stream media in the political bias and inaccuracy of its reporting. The article here (click it to enlarge) titled "EDL? This is what you get" takes the biscuit as one of the most ill-informed and ludicrous I have seen.

The article blames the English Defence League for violence that erupted in the East End on 20 June after a march/demonstration by UAF (United Against Fashion) even though the EDL was not even present. The UAF is the ultimate "Red-Brown" alliance being a front for the Socialist Workers Party but with strong support from the Muslim Association of Britain (which is part of the Muslim Brotherhood). To give you an indication of where the UAF really stands on racism, Weyman Bennett of its central committee has been accused of stating that Israeli Jews “should go back to where they came from … New York or wherever” (a claim he has never denied). This is the very same Weyman Bennett who is quoted at the end of the Jewish Chronicle article to support the JC's version of events.

I already wrote about the background to this story here. Basically, the EDL had planned to demonstrate against an Islamist hatefest conference due to take place at the Troxy in Tower Hamlets on 20 June featuring some of the vilest, most racist anti-semitic Islamists around. Fortunately, the event was cancelled under pressure from the local council and so the EDL demonstration was also cancelled. However, the UAF's planned massive march to confront the EDL still went ahead. Among the standard blood curdling speeches, was this this speech by George Galloway that includes the statement "If you dare touch the beard of a Muslim man in Tower Hamlets you will have to fight your way through 10,000 dead bodies first". Not suprisingly, the march ended with hundreds of duly incited Muslim men rampaging through the East End attacking Police and passers-by. Not that you would realise that from reading the JC article, which tries to cover up the Islamist violence. However, the East London advertiser reports:

  • Despite no EDL presence, the protesters became agitated and ‘surged up and down’ the Whitechapel Road. According to the police statement, there were ‘concerted efforts by the crowd to attack people at random.' Police officers themselves were also attacked by the crowd ‘at points throughout the afternoon.’

Compare all the above with the Jewish Chronicle version of events. Also, while the Jewish Chronicle has run several articles demonising the EDL, it has never investigated or even questioned the agenda of the UAF who (unlike the EDL) pose a genuine threat to the Jewish community. Also the JC's failure to check out the background of the UAF spokeman it quoted is an example of extremely poor journalism.

But what I found most worrying of all was that, coupled with the CST quote in the article, was the message to Jews that essentially says: Do not try to to defend yourself against Islamic extremism. Any violence committed by the Islamists that occurs as a result of you trying to defend yourself - even if you are not actually involved in that violence - is your fault and we will hold you to blame for it. The irony is that this is exactly the message the world has been sending to Israel (a message the JC has, rightly, been condemning).

p.s. The JC has been giving prominent space to a range of anti-Zionists to vent their spleen recently, and has also allowed many ridiculous claims to go unchallenged. One of these persistent claims is the notion that the American organisation JStreet is somehow 'pro-Israel' (a claim which is stated yet again by the increasingly unhinged Jonathan Freedland on page 35 this week). I think the JC should take the trouble to find out about what JStreet really stands for by reading respected commentators like Noah Pollack here, or find out about the extent of Islamic/Arab funding of JStreet here.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Sun is now censoring out news items that cast Islam in a bad light

The Sun has long been accused by Muslims and leftists of whipping up anti-Muslim sentiment. The fact that, on the contrary, the Sun has recently adopted both an anti-Israel stance and a whitewashing of Muslim extremism is something I raised here.

Well today comes the story about the trial of Faisal Shahzad who pleaded guilty to the attempt to detonate a car in Times Square New York (one of the foiled terrorist attacks in the US that people like Obama say have nothing to do with Muslims or Islam). Not only did he plead guilty but he stated in court that he was a Muslim warrior and that he would do it 100 times over because of US interference in Muslim lands. He also threatened that further Islamist attacks on the US were coming.

Despite this the Sun has decided to 'censor out' completely the Islamist angle from the story today. The report in the Sun says that Shazad pleaded guilty and that he would do it '100 times over' but completely leaves out any mention of his faith and any mention of his statement about his motives and threats he made. In fact, Sun readers would be completely unaware that this attempted mass murder attack had anything to do with Muslims/Islam.

I also listend to LBC this morning (the main London news station) and although the 7.00am bulletin mentioned the Islamist motivation, all subsequent bulletins (I listened at 7.15, 7.30, 7.45, 8.00 and 8.15) also censored out the Islamist angle.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

The world's hypocrisy

On 6 May 2010 - just three weeks before Israel's storming of the Turkish boat that had been, effectively, hijacked by IHH terrorists, Russian special forces stormed a ship that had been hijacked by a group of about 15 Somali pirates. The Russians rounded up the pirates, confiscated their weapons, and put them back in the boat they had come on. They then simply blew up the boat killing every one of the Somalis. The full video of this incident can be seen here.

The only matter of dispute about the incident is whether or not the Russians shot and killed all the pirates before blowing up the boat (the Somalis seem to be claiming they were all shot first).

Did you hear any fanatical public outrcy about this incident? No. You almost certainly never even heard of it, despite the existence of the very graphic video. A bit of a contrast to Israel's action.

As far as I can tell, with the exception of the Somalis (who don't constitute a functioning government anyway) not one single country condemned this action. As justified as it might have been to people like me (I wish every country dealt with Somali pirates like the Russians do - I bet they won't be hijacking many Russian ships again) the Russian action is - on a scale of callousness - an order of magnitude greater than what Israel did. Unlike the Israelis the Russian soldiers were never in any danger when they killed their victims, and unlike the Turks against the Israelis, the Somalis were not attempting in any way to destabilise Russia and/or support terrorist movements fighting Russia. In the 'Guardian' sense of the word this really was a cold-blooded massacre. But I could not find a single mention of this incident in the UK media or TV. On the contrary, the only reference I could find was a brief story - in the Guardian on the 7 May that was actually headlined "Russia frees captured Somali pirates" (despite the subsequent video evidence I could find no later correction to the Guardian story).

This type of hypocrisy is addressed in a great (but sobering) article by Sultan Knish that explains the futility of Israel continually offering concessions to an enemy dedicated to its annihilation. The article highlights the world's hypocrisy in singling out Israel for hysterical condemnation for behaviour that is far less offensive and aggressive than a large number of other countries in the world (including most of those shouting loudest against Israel). His article highlights some of the actions of Iran, China, North Korea, Turkey, Dubai, and Venzuela.

In addition to Knish's example and the especially relevant Russian example above he could have added the following:

  • Syria for its renewed rape of Lebanon and brutal suppression of dissent
  • Morocco for its continued occupation of Western Sahara and brutal violations of human rights there
  • Saudi Arabia for its invasion of northern Yemen and the resulting massacre of Houthi rebels
  • Egypt for the suppression and massacres against the Coptic minority
  • Pakistan whose state-sponsored persecution of the Ahmadiyya minority led directly to a number of massacres notably the coordinated attacks on their mosques earlier this month. Also whose security service the ISI is both funding and advising the Taleban.
  • Indonesia for the continued state sponsored persecution of Christians and Bhuddhists leading to frequent massacres.
  • Malaysia for its official state policy of suppression and persecution of Christians leading, for example, to coordinated attacks on 9 churches in Jan 2010
  • Iraq for its brutal oppression of Christians and murder of political opponents
  • Yemen for forcing out the last handful of Jews who were in the country after a Rabbi was murdered by a Jihadist (who has not even been charged).

...basically you can add just about every Muslim country.

But, and this is the really interesting point, a number of Western countries have committed 'crimes against Muslims' that far exceed anything that Israel has done, but receive barely a murmour of criticism:

  • US and its allies in Afghanistan have killed many times more civilians from bombing and drone attacks than were killed in Gaza in 2009. Although this occasionally raises the concerns of Muslim and leftist protesters the scale of fury is a tiny fraction of that directed at Israel for lesser "offences".
  • Switzerland's ban on Mosque minarets brought minor condemnation from Muslims and some leftists but if Israel had brought in a similar law then we would certainly have seen mass worldwide hysteria and UN resolutions against its 'apartheid'.
  • In many Western countries (notably Holland and Austria) elections have brought stunning advances by political parties fighting almost exlusively on an anti-Islamism agenda. Again, similar gains by such a party in Israel would have seen mass worldwide hyteria and UN resolutions against its 'apartheid'.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Funding the 'poor' Palestinians

There is a very good article here comparing the amount of aid that the US is giving this year to Gaza (meaning explicitly Hamas) compared to a country in far more desperate (and deserving) need, namely Haiti. The article shows that, based on the population size, Gazans will get 7.5 times more than Haitians.

In fact, charitable funding for Palestinians (most of which ultimately is paid for by taxpayers in the US and Western Europe and not by oil-rich Arab nations) is, by a huge margin, pro-rata more than is given in aid to any other nation or people in the world. No people in the history of the world have been so lavishly showered with charity as the Palestinians. The main reason for this is that, unlike any other people or refugees in history, the Palestinians have their own dedicated UN agency - UNRWA. The official web page of UNRWA states that it has an annual budget of $1.23 billion mainly from money donated by the governments of the USA and Western Europe. But the UNRWA funding does not include the many other regular charitable donations the Palestinians receive from charities and NGOs such as Oxfam, War on Want and Christian Aid as well as the regular 'special appeals' such as the DEC appeal in January 2009 (it is difficult to get the exact figures from these organisations but, for example, the Christian Aid 2009 annual report gives a figure of £17.5 million spent in the Middle East and it is almost certain that over 50% of this was to the Palestinians, while War on Want focues almost entirely on the Palestinians). Nor does the UNRWA budget include the frequent one-off payments such as that made last weekend by the British Government (£19 million on top of the annual £200 million at a time when we are told the Government has no money and plans massive cuts everywhere) and the US government ($400 million). Both of these special payments were, effectively, one-off rewards to Hamas for engineering the flotilla incident. In 2007 an international conference in Paris saw a pledge of an additional $7.4 billion over the following 3 years to the Palestinian Authority.

When you add in the Iranian government's direct support of Hamas (believed to be a billion dollars over the last two years) and the unspecified funding of Hamas that comes from the Gulf states, it is likely that charitable foreign donations/aid to the Palestinians in Gaza amounts currently to at least $3 billion dollars per year. That works out - per person - at some 60 times greater than aid received by Haiti and several hundreds times per person more than most African countries.

If even a small proportion of this aid was spent on genuine humanitarian needs and nation building then it might be partially justified. But most of the foreign aid cash given to the Palestinians is unaccounted for (possibly as much as 90%) and hence goes direct to Hamas or (in the West Bank) into the Swiss banking accounts of PA officials (this is how Yasser Arafat accumulated several billions of dollars in his own private accounts). The massive, disproportionate charitable donations to Palestinians not only ensures a culture of total dependence (hence stopping any real economic development) but is also the primary enabler of their continued terrorism. You would have thought that Western governments would have twigged by now just how counter-productive it is, but the liberal elite in charge simply cannot resist the lure of Palestinian victimhood.

If you want to do something about it then one small thing you can do is tell anybody you know never to give to the charities that are most agressively and politically 'pro-Palestinian' (or, more correctly 'anti-Israel' like the ones I've listed above. In particular, these are the charities that most benefit from "Comic Relief" - if you support Israel make sure you never again buy a red nose. See the report here for details:

http://www.hurryupharry.org/2009/03/07/a-nose-job/

Since that report was written things have got a whole lot worse, especially with the charity "War on Want":

http://www.ngo-monitor.org/article/war_on_want_wages_war_on_israel_update_
http://www.hurryupharry.org/2009/07/10/ben-white-at-war-on-want/

Monday, June 14, 2010

Terrorist attack on Israelis - totally ignored by every media outlet

What a surprise. A terrorist attack today killed one Israeli and critically injured two others - and has been claimed by the 'moderate' Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade who are formally part of Abbas's Fatah organisation NOT Hamas - received precisely zero coverage in any UK news outlet. Not a word either on google news or yahoo.

But, while the BBC news website did not consider this terrorist attack newsworthy, it has quite a big splash on its front page criticising Israel's probe into the flotilla incident. Under the front page headline "Israel raid probe 'not impartial'" we find the article here with the more informative headline "Israel Gaza probe criticised by Turkey and Palestinians" . Of course, Turkey and the Palestinians are the objective people we need to be listening to here. I don't remember the BBC running a headline "Nuremburg trials criticised by Nazi leaders" in 1946 but it would have made just as much sense.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Who are the racists here?

There has been a massive campaign by Unions, leftist and Muslim organisations in Tower Hamlets East London to confront a demo by the EDL (English Defence League) planned for 20 June.

Here is the UAF's web page about it (the UAF is a front for the Socialist Workers Party):

http://uaf.org.uk/2010/06/unions-and-mosques-back-east-london-demo-against-edl/

The accompanying leaflet on the webpage talks about the EDL being a bunch of violent Nazis. The EDL actually has nothing about the demo on their webpage but there are details of a recent EDL march in Newcastle. In complete contradiction to the narrative presented by the UAF, it is clear that the EDL is intent on peaceful, legal - and specifically non-racist - demonstration as is clear from the following statement:

"Thank you all for your patience in waiting for this information, as you all know this Saturday the English Defence League will be holding a peaceful demonstration to oppose militant Islam in Newcastle upon Tyne....Our stewards and Northumbria police will be working side by side to make sure that anyone that is trying to disrupt our march will be ejected from it, racist chants and slurs will not be accepted ..."

In fact all violence at previous EDL demos appreas to have come from the UAF who have confronted them.

But here is the really interesting thing. What the UAF is not telling anybody is that the REAL event planned in Tower Hamlets on 20 June has nothing to do with the EDL but is an Islamist hatefest at the Troxy. This event - featuring some of the vilest, most racist anti-semitic Islamfascists around - was exposed here for example:

http://hurryupharry.org/2010/05/17/poxy-preachers-at-the-troxy-bilal-philips-and-hussein-yee/

The EDL demo was, I understand, simply a planned protest against this event. So, to say that the UAF has spun a different narrative on what is going on is an incredible understatement. They are deliberately covering up/ignoring an event where the speakers would genuinely be stirring racial violence (in their distorted view Muslims can never be racists or offensive of course). But a group of people demonstrating peacefully against them - well that is something to get very angry about. They must be the racists. It is a classic case of reason turned on its head.

But in the last few hours there has been a major development. As a result of the Council issuing a statement yesterday requiring the 'no hate pledge' for events at the Troxy, the Troxy has decided to cancel the conference as they felt that they could not meet the pledge:

http://www.eastlondonadvertiser.co.uk/content/towerhamlets/advertiser/news/story.aspx?brand=ELAOnline&category=news&tBrand=northlondon24&tCategory=newsela&itemid=WeED10%20Jun%202010%2012%3A11%3A44%3A280

Frankie Boyle: ignorant anti-semitic idiot



Above is the full article by Frankie Boyle on 4 June in the Sun (click to enlarge it) that was cited in my complaint to the Press Complaints Commission yesterday as an example of their biased and inaccurate anti-Israel coverage of the flotilla incident.

I decided to file a special complaint about this article today as follows:

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The main article on the Frankie Boyle page (page 17) titled “Comic Relief must be bloody in Israel” contains a number of blatantly false and offensive anti-Israel claims that collectively constitute a blood libel. The worst examples were:

  • Israel attacked and killed a numbe of charity workers who were peacefully arriving on a boat”. This claim was proven to be false by the afternoon of 31 May through extensive video evidence.
  • Some of the protesters on board were teachers – presumably not teachers from England, as they tend to side with Israel on the policy of beating children to death”. This is an especially offensive slur which cannot be simply dismissed as a joke.
  • The Israeli forces abseiled from helicopters carrying machine guns”. The Israeli weapons that had been originally claimed to be 'machine guns' by the anti-Israel activists were proven to be paintball guns on 31 May (4 days before the article was published).


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Frankie Boyle, of course, has form with regards his vicious anti-Israel hatred - as you can see here:

http://www.israellycool.com/2010/05/01/off-the-boyle/

I have no doubt that he would claim to be very offended by being called anti-semitic. But, as is explained very well in the following articles, the unique obsessive hatred with Israel is always confirmation of anti-semitism:


http://sultanknish.blogspot.com/2010/06/defending-yourself-only-makes-us-hate.html

http://normblog.typepad.com/normblog/2010/06/israel-human-decency-common-humanity-by-eve-garrard.html

http://www.jpost.com/Home/Article.aspx?id=177768

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Forget the Guardian - it's the Sun we really have to worry about now

Until recently the Sun was the only British newspaper that could be relied on to be sympathetic to Israel's cause - in its news coverage, editorials and guest columns. That started changing when James Murdoch's son (known to have none of his father Rupert's sympathies with Israel) took over the reins of News Corp Europe and Asia, and the Saudis (in the form of Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal) and other Arabs bought a significant share of the company. As a result, instead of great friends of Israel like Richard Littlejohn, regular columnists now include left-wing Israel haters Ken Livingstone, Frankie Boyle (more of him below), and Islamist apologist Anila Baig.

Nevertheless, while I fully expected the irrational blood libel against Israel to pour out of the Guardian, Times, Independent, and Mirror over last week's flotilla incident, I never for one minute expected the Sun to follow suit. Yet, not only did it do just that, but its coverage was in many ways far more damaging - as explained in detail below - because almost uniquely among the British media it completely ignored the mass of evidence to support Israel's case day after day. Given the Sun's previous pro-Israel stance and the fact that it commands by far the largest readership in the UK, this is an exceptionally damaging development. It means that most people in the UK are completely unaware of Israel's side of the story.

I therefore felt moved to make a formal complaint to the Press Commission today as follows (note especially the details at the end of the complaint concerning the Frankie Boyle column).

************************************************************


To the Press Complaints Commission

My complaint is against the Sun newspaper for its coverage (over a number of days) of the anti-Israel flotilla incident that took place in the early hours of 31 May. The coverage breached two clauses of the Code Of Conduct, namely clause 1 (accuracy) and clause 2 (Opportunity to reply). By way of example I cite three specific articles during the period 1-7 June) that clearly breach Clause 1. One of these (on 4 June) is especially serious since it contains a sequence of blatant lies that amount to a blood libel. The Sun breached clause 2 by not offering the opportunity for any reply to the unfounded allegations against Israel.

The general complaint

For the entire duration (1 to 7 June) the coverage presented a narrative about the Israeli raid that was based purely on the perspective of the anti-Israel demonstrators on board the flotilla. This narrative – that the passengers on board the Turkish ship Mavi Marmura were peace-loving activists massacred in cold blood by Israeli commandos illegally boarding the ship in international waters, was proven to be false by the afternoon of 31 May. The proof, in the form of extensive video and audio evidence, showed that:

  • The Israeli commandos entered the ship legally (see below) and were armed with paintball guns, not machine guns, as they had been told by the Turkish authorities that there would not be any violent resistance.
  • In a well prepared and planned attack, an organised gang of some 100 Turks from the terrorist organisation IHH, armed with knives, metal poles, slings (and possibly also guns) viciously attacked and stabbed the Israeli commandos as they landed one by one. Only when a number of Israeli commandos were critically injured during the lynching (including at least two of whom were shot by handguns either stolen from the commandos or already on board) did the Israelis get permission to use their handguns to save their men.
  • The Israeli commandos had entered the ship as a last resort when the ship’s commander refused repeated requests to steer the ship to the Israeli port of Ashdod. Given the legal blockade of Gaza from the sea (to stop the import of weapons to the Hamas regime) this request, and the subsequent boarding when refused, were normal legal actions of the kind carried out routinely by governments all over the world to prevent hostile cargo and personnel reaching their shores.
  • Before leaving Turkey hundreds of flotilla members had chanted slogans glorifying the historic slaughter of Jews by Muslims, while several had made ‘martyrdom’ videos. Moreover, during a radio conversation with the Israeli coastguard, the commander of the Mavi Marmura told the Israelis to ‘go back to Auschwitz’ and ‘remember 9/11’.

The relevant videos, which were widely available from the afternoon of 31 May can be found, for example, here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYjkLUcbJWo
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bU12KW-XyZE
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C9p5QT91QYs
http://idfspokesperson.com/2010/06/01/recording-idf-soldiers-report-attacks-from-the-flotilla-activists-on-board-the-marmara-1-june-2010/

Many other pictures and videos are available here:

http://idfspokesperson.com/

Yet, despite this overwhelming evidence, the Sun chose to ignore it all for the entire duration of its coverage of the story (which ran each day from 1 to 7 June). Indeed, the Sun continued to rely totally on ‘eye witness’ accounts from anti-Israel demonstrators, some of whom were not even on the Mavi Marmura. In all cases these accounts were clearly proven to be false from the video evidence.

The specific complaints

1 June: The coverage was on page 1, continued on pages 8-9. The page 1 headline was “19 Killed in Israel attack” while on pages 8-9 the headlines spoke of “Israel ship massacre” and “Bloody Disastrous”.
The article was inaccurate in all aspects (as discussed above). Also, the figure of “19 killed” was an exaggerated figure provided by the anti-Israel demonstrators immediately after the incident and was known to be false long before the Sun went to press on 1 June. The actual figure was 9 dead. No mention at all was made of the Israeli casualties.

4 June: The main article on the Frankie Boyle page (page 17) titled “Comic Relief must be bloody in Israel”. This article (update: see here for the full version) is nothing less than a blood libel containing a string of total fabrications from start to finish. The examples include:
  • “Israel attacked and killed a number of charity workers who were peacefully arriving on a boat”.
  • “Some of the protesters on board were teachers – presumably not teachers from England, as they tend to side with Israel on the policy of beating children to death”
  • “The Israeli forces abseiled from helicopters carrying machine guns” (That this false accusation could be repeated on 4 June when the Israeli weapons were proven to be paintball guns on 31 May is especially revealing)

7 June: On page 2 in an article titled “Israel’s bloodied troops” the Sun is guilty of showing two photographs which were proven to be cropped versions of photos that had appeared in a Turkish newspaper. The original versions showed the full context: bloodied Israeli soldiers being dragged by Turkish attackers holding knives. The cropped version removes the knives and most of the key context. The cropping has been admitted – and subsequently corrected – by Reuters in what has become known as the Reuters photo cropping scandal. Details (including the full pictures) can be found here:

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2010/06/08/reuters-fake-photos-ihh-gaza-blockade-commandos/


http://elderofziyon.blogspot.com/2010/06/reuters-tries-to-minimize-photo.html

http://littlegreenfootballs.com/article/36489_Another_Cropped_Reuters_Photo_Deletes_Another_Knife_-_And_a_Pool_of_Blood

Yet, although Reuters had corrected the ‘error’ on 6 June, the Sun still chose to display the incorrect versions on 7 June. Moreover, the emphasis of the story accompanying the photos was support for a narrative that was demonstrably false, namely (quoting directly from the article): “the pictures show activists tending wounded commandos”.