Sunday, February 19, 2017

Netanyahu Down Under

by his greatest Australian fan, Greg Sheridan:

It'll be bigger than Ben Hur:

"... Mr Netanyahu has extended his stay... to stretch now from Wednesday to Saturday. He will hold a series of talks with Malcolm Turnbull, and the two leaders will appear together at a number of events. The Israeli leader will also meet Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove, as well as Bill Shorten and NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian. He will also attend a full meeting of federal cabinet and address Jewish community functions." (Security key as Israeli PM breaks new ground, The Australian, 18/2/17)

Despite Israel being the home of the NSO Group, "an Israeli cyberarms dealer" whose "motto is 'Make the World a Safer Place'," but whose "spyware is increasingly turning up on the phones of journalists, dissidents and human rights activists"*:

"The two countries will formalise a cyber-security dialogue and enhance cyber-security co-operation."

Business is business:

"Mr Netanyahu is believed to be bringing a delegation of about 25 leaders of hi-tech industries, including space, agribusiness, cyber and medical devices."

Shhh... don't mention the settlements:

"The Turnbull government will reiterate its support for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict [and] will also emphasise that a peace agreement cannot be imposed by outsiders."

Let's talk about Iran, instead:

"The Israeli Prime Minister's highest priority on strategic issues is Iran... He will get a sympathetic hearing... and likely find some support for his position, although Australia will not be as critical of Iran as Israel is."

It's us against the world, Trumble:

"The fact the visit is going ahead, and that it matches or exceeds in length Mr Netanyahu's visit to the US this week, is a sign of his appreciation for Australia and the priority he puts on the relationship."

OK, Trumble, how about a joint bombs-away over Asad's presidential palace in Damascus. C'mon, Trumble, you know you want to:

"There will also be extensive talks on Syria, where Australia is involved militarily, and on the threat of Islamist terrorism. Mr Turnbull is likely to express solidarity with Israel in combating terrorism."

And, Trumble, you may as well stick around for our Balfour Declaration centenary shindig while you're there:

"It is possible Mr Turnbull could announce his intention to attend the centenary celebrations of the Beersheba operation in Israel on October 31 this year."

[*Bitter taste for soft drinks campaign, Nicole Perlroth, New York Times/ Sydney Morning Herald, 14/2/17]

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Israel Discovers Cure for Cancer

Simply shoot the sufferer:

"On his way to what was supposed to be his final chemotherapy session, last November, he boarded the wrong shared taxi. Discovering his mistake, he got off and ran across the highway to catch a taxi going in the opposite direction. Israel Defense Forces soldiers, who may have thought he was going to attack them, shot him, seriously wounding him. For the next three months he was bedridden in Beilinson Hospital, in Petah Tikva, most of the time in an intensive care unit. Throughout that entire period, no one in the IDF thought of updating his parents and family about the condition of their loved one. His mother was the only one allowed... to visit him, but even though she came a few times, on all but one occasion she was not permitted to enter his room. Just as his condition seemed to be improving, he died, apparently last week. No one thought to inform the family about his death, or the circumstances surrounding it. Israel has not yet returned the body In his native town of Tul Karm, in the northwestern part of the West Bank, no one believes that Mohammed Aamar Jalad [25] tried to attack soldiers on the way to his last chemo session." (Palestinian dies after being shot by Israeli troops on his way to his last chemo session, Gideon Levy & Alex Levac, Haaretz, 17/2/17)

Danby to Hawke: How Very Dare You...

Born and bred in Melbourne, portly, pudding-faced Labor MP for Melbourne Ports, Michael Danby, looks just like any other comfortable, well-upholstered, whitebread pollywaffle with a princely retirement package lying in wait.

But appearances, as always, are deceiving.

Beneath that puffy, humdrum visage lurks a fierce Semitic Son of Israel with an unbroken DNA connection going all the way back to the warriors of Moses' Israeli Labor Party who once stood on the desert verge, gazing wide-eyed at the land flowing with milk and honey which lay before them, and which that mysterious entity G-D had conveniently promised them for their exclusive use.

With this antique connection surging through his veins, grinding all the while a photo of Bob Hawke underfoot, and the aforesaid mysterious entity guiding a hand trembling with righteous indignation at the silver bodgie's blasphemous use of the words 'Palestinians', 'indigenous', and 'Holy Land' in the same sentence, he furiously penned the following words, which, lo and behold, appeared in yesterday's Australian:

"Hawke's analysis of the conflict included a surprising throwaway that the Palestinians are the 'indigenous' people of the Holy Land. How could anyone, let alone a former prime minister, ignore the plethora of historical documents and archaeological artefacts that attest to the unbroken chain of Hebrew, Israelite and Jewish language, culture, religion and civilisation in the Holy Land over the past 3250 years?"" (Labor troika fails to see the roadblocks in Palestine)

But wait. What's this?

"And I have said I will bring you up out of the affliction of Egypt into the land of the Canaanites..." (Exodus 3:17)

Once again: "... the land of the Canaanites..."

Just in case you missed it: "... THE LAND OF THE CANAANITES..."

Friday, February 17, 2017

Alice's Adventures in Trumpland 2

Alice: Just trying to pin the POTUS down here, Nikki. Seems he finds both the two- and the one-state hot. But which solution, do you think, is he more inclined to grab by the pussy?

Nikki Haley: "First of all, the two-state solution is what we support... We absolutely support the two-state solution, but we are thinking out of the box as well."*

[*US ambassador to UN contradicts Trump's position on two-state solution, Julian Borger, theguardian.com, 17/2/17]

Trump's Palestine/Israel Policy in a Word

Whatever.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Alice's Adventures in Trumpland

Alice: What do you think about the two-state solution?

Trump''I'm looking at two-state and one-state and I like the one that both parties like."*

[*Trump says US not committed to two-state Israel-Palestine solution, Julian Borger/ Peter Beaumont, theguardian.com, 16/2/17]

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Bob Hawke's Crazy Love

In an Australian Financial Review op-ed published yesterday, former Labor PM and die-hard "friend of Israel," Bob Hawke, confesses to being worried about "the danger of Israel being blinded to the threat to its very soul and the vision of its future."

In Time to recognise the state of Palestine, he describes a meeting he had with former Israeli PM Golda Meir, at the end of the Yom Kippur War in October 1973:

"I listened with admiration and in total agreement as this wonderful woman, still traumatised with grief, looked into my eyes and said there could be no peace for Israel until there was an honourable settlement of the aspirations of the Palestinian people."

"Soul"? "Vision"? We're dealing here with a-worse-than-apartheid-state for God's sake, with no other "vision" than to cram in as many Jews as possible, and knock off as many Palestinians as circumstances allow. As for that "wonderful woman," Golda Meir, wasn't she the one who said, "There is no such thing as Palestinians"? (See my 17/8/08 post The Zionist La Passionara.)

Unfortunately, despite all his free time and a taxpayer-funded retirement package an aged pensioner could only dream of, he still hasn't taken the time or trouble to revisit, research, revise and apologise for his youthful infatuation and where it led him.

Clearly, the old codger's still not over it.

The only thing, it seems, which perturbs his rosy vision of an imagined Israeli golden age, is the current "sentiment of Israeli political leadership" as exemplified in "the inexorable expansion of Jewish settlement in the West Bank," where "some 580,000 Israelis live in 123 government-authorised settlements and about 100 unauthorised outposts on the West Bank and 12 major neighbourhoods in East Jerusalem." Not to mention those recently announced.

"The least we can do," he concludes, "in these most challenging of times, is to do what 137 other nations have already done - grant diplomatic recognition to the state of Palestine."

The appalling thought arises: Will this be it? Will Hawke's be the one and only opinion piece in the lead-up to Netanyahu's visit in the Australian press that deviates from the usual, bipartisan kowtowing to Israel?

Perish the the thought.

But there's more to Hawke's piece than meets the eye. Something quite astonishing in fact. This:

"It was our great foreign minister Dr H.V. Evatt who chaired the UN Special Committee on Palestine and it was the resolution of that committee that authorised the partition of Palestine into two states. It was on the basis of this resolution that the state of Israel was established in 1948. The resolution gave the already settled and the newly arriving European Jewish settlers - who by then constituted a third of the population and owned less than 6% of the land - exactly 56.47% of the Palestinians' best cultivated land and cities. The two-thirds population of indigenous Palestinians who owned more than 94% of the land were given 47% of their own country."

Think about it...

If:

a) Evatt had a hand in proposing that the indigenous Palestinians be divested of 56.47% of their patrimony, to be handed over, lock, stock, and barrel, to a minority of recently-arrived European settlers who had purchased only 6% of it (and he did);

b) and if the partition proposal enshrined in the UNGA's resolution of 29 November, 1947, was as draconian as has been described (and it was);

c) and if said partition resolution was, at least in part, Evatt's legacy in Palestine (and it was), then how the hell can Hawke describe Evatt as "our great foreign minister"?

In fact, it was the partition resolution of 1947 that gave Zionist fanatics such as David Ben-Gurion and Golda Meir all the excuse they needed to embark on the military offensive they'd been preparing for for decades, drive out the indigenous Palestinian population, occupy 78% of their ancestral homeland, destroy hundreds of their villages, steal their land, and strew it with settlements (called at the time kibbutzes).

If Hawke really wanted to make a statement at this time, the very least he could have done would be to repudiate Evatt's legacy in Palestine, demand Israel withdraw to its 1947 partition borders, and call on it to implement all relevant UN resolutions, particularly UNGA resolution 194, enshrining the right of Palestinians ethnically cleansed in 1948 to return home.