Sunday, February 8, 2009

On Planet Sheridan...

My, it's been a refreshingly long time since we've heard from Greg (Jerusalem Prize) Sheridan, foreign editor of The Australian, on the subject of Palestine/Israel. All good things must come to an end though, and the bugger's back on the opinion pages with the usual Zio-centric tripe: There may be the will but not necessarily the way: Peace in the Middle East is not possible whatever Obama does so long as Palestinians oppose it (5/2/09).

On Planet Sheridan, of course, it's always the Palestinians who want war, and it's always the Israelis who strive for peace, including Likud leader and probable next prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu: "Netanyahu will be demonised by the usual suspects but he will be no barrier to peace."

No barrier to peace? Does The Australian's foreign editor bother reading his own foreign correspondents? Apparently not. Here's what The Australian's Jerusalem correspondent Abraham Rabinovich wrote about Netanyahu on 30/1/09: "Of the 3 candidates for prime minister, Mr Netanyahu is the only one who does not endorse a two-state solution as advocated by the US - a Palestinian state and a Jewish state alongside each other." (Right-wing, one-state party leads Israeli polls)

Did he bother reading The Australian's Middle East correspondent John Lyons' report about Netanyahu vowing to "'completely uproot' Hamas in the Gaza Strip" and "defeat 'the Iranian threat at all levels'"? (We must drive out enemies, says Bibi, 6/2/09) It seems not.

Even if Netanyahu found peace in the way that some people find Jesus, there'd be the slight matter of the Likud charter (aka the Likud Party platform), unheard of in the pages of The Heart of The Nation: "The Government of Israel flatly rejects the establishment of a Palestinian Arab state west of the Jordan River. The Palestinians can run their lives freely in the framework of self-rule, but not as independent and sovereign state."/"The Jewish communities in Judea, Samaria and Gaza are the realization of Zionist values. Settlement of the land is a clear expression of the unassailable right of the Jewish people to the Land of Israel... The Likud will continue to strengthen and develop these communities and will prevent their uprooting." (Likud Charter does not recognise Palestine, Frank Barat,, 31/1/09)

He's going to tear up that little barrier to peace, is he?

On Planet Sheridan, an entity he calls "Palestine" is going to get "all the land of the West Bank and Gaza except for the large Jewish settlement blocks [sic] that are effectively suburbs of Jerusalem or Tel Aviv. These house 80% of the Jewish settlers on 5% of the disputed land. The new Palestinian state would get land from Israel proper to make up for this 5%."

This, of course, is an exercise in prestidigitation: 1) "Disputed land" is Zionist jargon for occupied land; 2) The large Israeli settlement blocs are not "effectively suburbs of Tel Aviv"; and 3) When Sheridan talks about "Palestine" getting "all of the land of the West Bank," he either fails to let on, or is ignorant of the fact, that 30% of the West Bank, namely the Jordan Valley, will be retained by Israel, and that another 10% has been hived off by Israel's apartheid/annexation wall. All of the West Bank, itself only 22% of historic Palestine, thus reduces by 40%.

On Planet Sheridan, poor old Israel, despite its itching to get rid of "all" (or even 55%) of the West Bank, is unfortunately unable to find a "credible Palestinian leadership [which] can put an end to serious terrorism especially cross-border rocket launches," or which "will accept that such a settlement is the end of Palestinian territorial claims."

Shucks! Apparently, neither Abbas nor Hamas are credible. Nor Arafat before them. Nor... In fact, never being able to find a Palestinian peace partner is actually something of a Zionist tradition. As Middle East scholar Gabriel Piterberg has pointed out, back in 1924, when the British proposed to establish a legislative council for all of Palestine's inhabitants on the basis of the existing demographic configuration (Jewish minority/Arab majority), the leader of Palestine's Jewish community, David Ben-Gurion, found himself in a lather as to how to avoid dealing with the (then) leadership of the Palestinian national movement: "Ben-Gurion employed every trick in the book to avoid doing so, from a spurious white man's burden ('we' cannot reach a true understanding with the Arabs until 'we' help them become civilized and progressive, and until 'we' help transform their national movement so that it is led by workers rather than effendis and clerics), through settler-colonial superciliousness to outright cynicism and procrastination. This he did by means of what [Shabtai] Teveth [his biographer] calls the 'class formula'... Only when the Arab national movement is led by workers, proclaimed Ben-Gurion, will such an understanding be possible. Why the need to stall? Ben-Gurion's vision of how the Zionist project would come to fruition was in essence no different from Jabotinsky's 'Iron Wall' metaphor in his 1923 article of the same name, which recognized the genuine resistance of indigenous people to the threat of external dispossession and the corresponding solution of erecting an iron wall - 'the strengthening in Palestine of a government without any kind of Arab influence'. Where Ben-Gurion differed from Jabotinsky was in his view that it was unwise openly to define the reality in Palestine as a conflict between a settler-national movement versus an indigenous one until the Yishuv became ineradicably solid. The class formula was an expedient rationale for stalling, crafted as it was in a language perfectly appropriate to Ben-Gurion's institutional position as secretary general of the Histadrut. For Ben-Gurion such language was expedient; he dropped it like a hot potato as soon as he could." (The Returns of Zionism: Myths, Politics & Scholarship in Israel, 2008, pp 73-74) Eighty-five years on, Zionist leaders are still stalling.

On Planet Sheridan, it should come as no great surprise to find that the Gaza massacres are all Hamas' fault: "The cost in innocent Palestinian lives was heavy and tragic, and the fault... rests entirely with Hamas, the terrorist death-cult that rules Gaza. I do not believe a single story of Israeli war crimes or atrocities in Gaza. There is no evidence of any such story beyond Palestinian eye-witness accounts and on countless* previous occasions these accounts have been fabricated... The Israelis are among the most disciplined troops in the world and go to great lengths to avoid civilian casualties." No mention of the international media being kept out of Gaza, of course.

All Palestinians, it seems, are liars on Planet Sheridan, and the IOF is completely above reproach. But what would Sheridan make of this: "'Fire on anything that moves in Zeitoun' - that was the order handed down to Israeli troops in the Givati Shaked battalion, who reduced the eastern Gaza City suburb to little more than rubble in a matter of days... 'We pounded Zeitoun into the ground', an Israeli soldier who was deployed in the area, told The Times... We pounded them with fire; they never had a chance'." (Israeli soldiers recall Gaza attack orders, Sheera Frenkel, The Times, 28/1/09)

A self-hating Jew perhaps? Or this: "Having interviewed dozens of victims and witnesses and, having examined the ballistic evidence from north to south, we are convinced that Israel did not do everything possible to minimise civilians' harm and death', said Fred Abrahams of Human Rights Watch. The rules of engagement were exceedingly loose, and they dropped the bar on the laws of war. This allowed civilian casualties to rise." (ibid) Bleeding heart definitely, probably self-hating Jew to boot. Or this: "Doctors operating the only brain-scanning machine at an Egyptian hospital near Gaza have been almost overwhelmed by the number of Palestinian children arriving with bullet wounds to the head." (Children found with bullets lodged in their head, Topaz Amoore,, 18/1/09) Gypos, get real!

On Planet Sheridan, remember, Hamas is not an Islamic resistance movement, but merely a "terrorist death-cult." And why, Sheridan asks, did this terrorist outfit goad easy-going, mild-mannered Israel to respond to its constant acts of naked aggression? That's easy: Hamas wanted to "have Israel painted again as the international villain." Pretty fiendish, eh?

You see, on Planet Sheridan, it's always Israel that responds and Hamas that attacks. Here on Planet Earth, however, it's not quite that simple, as Khalid Meshaal of Hamas' political bureau explains: "For 6 months we in Hamas observed the ceasefire. Israel broke it repeatedly from the start. Israel was required to open crossings to Gaza, and extend the truce to the West Bank. It proceeded to tighten its deadly siege of Gaza, repeatedly cutting electricity and water supplies. The collective punishment accelerated, as did the assassinations and killings. Thirty Gazans were killed by Israeli fire and hundreds of patients died as a direct effect of the siege during the so-called ceasefire. Israel enjoyed a period of calm. Our people did not... The logic of those who demand that we stop our resistance is absurd. They absolve the aggressor and occupier, armed with the deadliest weapons of death and destruction, of responsibility, while blaming the victim, prisoner and occupied. Our modest, home-made rockets are our cry of protest to the world. Israel and its American and European sponsors want us to be killed in silence. But die in silence we will not." (Gaza: the great divide -1, The Age, 7/1/09)

But no, Sheridan wouldn't be found dead reading The Age. And anyway, seeing Meshaal's not only a lying Palestinian, but also one of the leaders of the "terrorist death cult" which is Hamas, what he has to say can hardly be "credible" now, can it? All this talk about blockades and extra-judicial murders - baloney - Sheridan knows better: "Hamas's goals and motivation are theological and filled with sectarian hatred and anti-Semitism," and he wheels out the Hamas charter to prove it (See my 30/3/08 post Jerusalem Prize Syndrome). From this hoary document we are supposed to understand that Hamas, in addition to being a "terrorist death cult," is also just another of your generic, Jew-killing jihadi organisations. Which doesn't quite explain why, as Sheridan asserts, "Hamas has engaged in countless* atrocities against Palestinians it doesn't like. It has murdered many Fateh men, but the media subjects this behaviour to very little scrutiny." Much like his own paper, I guess, which has kept schtum about USrael's Palestinian collaborators dishing it out to alleged Hamas supporters in the West Bank*. Nor, for that matter, would you read in The Australian that the Israeli Occupation Forces were instructed by the chief military rabbinate not "to 'be enticed by the folly of the Gentiles who have mercy for the cruel'." (Israeli MP: military rabbi turned Gaza into holy war,, 8/2/09). That Israeli MP, Avshalom Vilan, just has to be a self-hating Jew!

[*"The horrific torture of hundreds of people by Palestinian security forces in the West Bank is being funded by British taxpayers... The victims - some left maimed - are rounded up for alleged involvement with the militant Islamic group Hamas, yet many have nothing to do with it." (Financed by the British taxpayer, brutal torturers of the West Bank, David Rose,, 31/1/09)]

On Planet Sheridan, Palestinians are a perennial worry. Sheridan informs us that not only do the buggers carry the dreaded jihad virus ("the wider ideology of Islamist jihad... has currency in the Palestinian population..."), but that they're multiplying like rabbits - and it's not because they're randy as, mind you - but because "they... have a long-term demographic strategy." No, not along the lines of your civilized Peter Costello demographic strategy ("one for mum, one for dad, and one for the country") but popping 'em out like there's no tomorrow (which, come to think of it, there probably isn't in the Gaza Strip): "In 1950, there were about 240,000 Gazans. Now there are about 1.5 million. By 2040 there will be 3 million. Eventually, they believe, they will swamp Israel with sheer numbers."

Here we find Sheridan climbing into bed (gross thought I know) with the SMH's Islamophobe-in-residence, Paul Sheehan, who only last month wrote of the Gaza Palestinians: "Women, living under sharia law, are used primarily as breeding stock." (See my 13/1/09 post Oriana Fallaci Meets Israeli PR at the SMH) Makes me wonder - Sheridan's a Catholic, right? He's contra condoms, right? But would he consider, I wonder, heading up a 'Condoms for Gaza' campaign if it were necessary to save his "plucky" little Israel from this biological ticking bomb? Now there's a thought!

On Planet Sheridan, "instead of a solution, we should look for Israel to manage the situation at the lowest level of violence possible, while encouraging any normalisation that can take place." IOW, recruit collaborators, and beat the crap out of the rest. Or better, what obtains now: recruit collaborators to beat the crap out of the rest.

[*Countless: I should explain that Sheridan has this way with numbers, as a general rule preferring 'thousands' to 'hundreds' if it helps bolster his 'case' (See my 4 & 10/2/08 posts When Even the Retraction is Dodgy 1 & 2). It seems now that "countless" (X2) is preferred over 'thousands'.]


Anonymous said...

Comparison of Arab and Jewish Nobel Prize Winners
Arab/Islamic Nobel Prize Winners
From a pool of 1.4 BILLION Muslims which are 20% of the world's population (2 out of every 10 people)
1988 - Najib Mahfooz
1978 - Anwar El-Sadat
1994 - Yasser Arafat *
2003 - Shirin Ebadi
1999 - Ahmed Zewail
Abdus Salam

* NOTE: Norwegian, Kaare Kristiansen, was a member of the Nobel Committee. He resigned in 1994 to protest the awarding of a Nobel "Peace Prize" to Yasser Arafat, whom he correctly labeled a "terrorist."
Jewish Nobel Prize Winners
From a pool of 12 million Jews which are 0.2% of the World's Population (2 out of every 1,000 people)
1910 - Paul Heyse
1927 - Henri Bergson
1958 - Boris Pasternak
1966 - Shmuel Yosef Agnon
1966 - Nelly Sachs
1976 - Saul Bellow
1978 - Isaac Bashevis Singer
1981 - Elias Canetti
1987 - Joseph Brodsky
1991 - Nadine Gordimer
2002 - Imre Kertesz
World Peace
1911 - Alfred Fried
1911 - Tobias Asser
1968 - Rene Cassin
1973 - Henry Kissinger
1978 - Menachem Begin
1986 - Elie Wiesel
1994 - Shimon Peres
1994 - Yitzhak Rabin
1995 - Joseph Rotblat
1905 - Adolph Von Baeyer
1906 - Henri Moissan
1910 - Otto Wallach
1915 - Richard Willstaetter
1918 - Fritz Haber
1943 - George Charles de Hevesy
1961 - Melvin Calvin
1962 - Max Ferdinand Perutz
1972 - William Howard Stein
1972 - C.B. Anfinsen
1977 - Ilya Prigogine
1979 - Herbert Charles Brown
1980 - Paul Berg
1980 - Walter Gilbert
1981 - Ronald Hoffmann
1982 - Aaron Klug
1985 - Herbert A. Hauptman
1985 - Jerome Karle
1986 - Dudley R. Herschbach
1988 - Robert Huber
1989 - Sidney Altman
1992 - Rudolph Marcus
1998 - Walter Kohn
2000 - Alan J. Heeger
2004 - Irwin Rose
2004 - Avram Hershko
2004 - Aaron Ciechanover
1970 - Paul Anthony Samuelson
1971 - Simon Kuznets
1972 - Kenneth Joseph Arrow
1973 - Wassily Leontief
1975 - Leonid Kantorovich
1976 - Milton Friedman
1978 - Herbert A. Simon
1980 - Lawrence Robert Klein
1985 - Franco Modigliani
1987 - Robert M. Solow
1990 - Harry Markowitz
1990 - Merton Miller
1992 - Gary Becker
1993 - Rober Fogel
1994 - John Harsanyi
1994 - Reinhard Selten
1997 - Robert Merton
1997 - Myron Scholes
2001 - George Akerlof
2001 - Joseph Stiglitz
2002 - Daniel Kahneman
2005 - Robert (Israel) Aumann
1908 - Elie Metchnikoff
1908 - Paul Erlich
1914 - Robert Barany
1922 - Otto Meyerhof
1930 - Karl Landsteiner
1931 - Otto Warburg
1936 - Otto Loewi
1944 - Joseph Erlanger
1944 - Herbert Spencer Gasser
1945 - Ernst Boris Chain
1946 - Hermann Joseph Muller
1950 - Tadeus Reichstein
1952 - Selman Abraham Waksman
1953 - Hans Krebs
1953 - Fritz Albert Lipmann
1958 - Joshua Lederberg
1959 - Arthur Kornberg
1964 - Konrad Bloch
1965 - Francois Jacob
1965 - Andre Lwoff
1967 - George Wald
1968 - Marshall W. Nirenberg
1969 - Salvador Luria
1970 - Julius Axelrod
1970 - Sir Bernard Katz
1972 - Gerald Maurice Edelman
1975 - David Baltimore
1975 - Howard Martin Temin
1976 - Baruch S. Blumberg
1977 - Rosalyn Sussman Yalow
1977 - Andrew V. Schally
1978 - Daniel Nathans
1980 - Baruj Benacerraf
1984 - Cesar Milstein
1985 - Michael Stuart Brown
1985 - Joseph L. Goldstein
1986 - Stanley Cohen [& Rita Levi-Montalcini]
1988 - Gertrude Elion
1989 - Harold Varmus
1991 - Erwin Neher
1991 - Bert Sakmann
1993 - Richard J. Roberts
1993 - Phillip Sharp
1994 - Alfred Gilman
1994 - Martin Rodbell
1995 - Edward B. Lewis
1997 - Stanley B. Prusiner
1998 - Robert F. Furchgott
2000 - Eric R. Kandel
2002 - Sydney Brenner
2002 - Robert H. Horvitz
1907 - Albert Abraham Michelson
1908 - Gabriel Lippmann
1921 - Albert Einstein
1922 - Niels Bohr
1925 - James Franck
1925 - Gustav Hertz
1943 - Gustav Stern
1944 - Isidor Issac Rabi
1945 - Wolfgang Pauli
1952 - Felix Bloch
1954 - Max Born
1958 - Igor Tamm
1958 - Il'ja Mikhailovich
1958 - Igor Yevgenyevich
1959 - Emilio Segre
1960 - Donald A. Glaser
1961 - Robert Hofstadter
1962 - Lev Davidovich Landau
1963 - Eugene P. Wigner
1965 - Richard Phillips Feynman
1965 - Julian Schwinger
1967 - Hans Albrecht Bethe
1969 - Murray Gell-Mann
1971 - Dennis Gabor
1972 - Leon N. Cooper
1973 - Brian David Josephson
1975 - Benjamin Mottleson
1976 - Burton Richter
1978 - Arno Allan Penzias
1978 - Peter L Kapitza
1979 - Stephen Weinberg
1979 - Sheldon Glashow
1988 - Leon Lederman
1988 - Melvin Schwartz
1988 - Jack Steinberger
1990 - Jerome Friedman
1992 - Georges Charpak
1995 - Martin Perl
1995 - Frederick Reines
1996 - David M. Lee
1996 - Douglas D. Osheroff
1997 - Claude Cohen-Tannoudji
2000 - Zhores I. Alferov
2003 - Vitaly Ginsburg
2003 - Alexei Abrikosov
After reviewing this list, can you supply a reason for the large discrepancy between the Arab/Islamic population's contribution to the world body and that of the Jew? There are 165 Jews listed as opposed to 6 from the Arab side.

MERC said...

And your point is...?

Alex said...

Anon 9.39PM Why dont you enlighten us to your reason for posting this list because I cant see the point? Go on I dare you ! Go on be a man and say it out loud !

Anonymous said...

Something Palestinians, Arabs and Muslims can aspire to if they would only put aside their extremism,racism and violent mentality which includes their love of death and martyrdom and replace it with education and love of life.

MERC said...

Don't pee on our legs and tell us it's raining.

Anonymous said...

sorry merc I left this bit off my original Post Comparing Arab and Jewish Nobel Prize Winners pardon me>

          The Jews are NOT promoting brain washing children in military
training camps, teaching them how to blow themselves up and cause
maximum deaths of Jews and other non Muslims!

          The Jews don't hijack planes, nor kill athletes at the
Olympics, or blow themselves up in German restaurants.  There is NOT one
single Jew that has destroyed a church.  There is NOT a single Jew that
protests by killing people.

          The Jews don't traffic slaves, nor have leaders calling for
Jihad and death to all the Infidels.

          Perhaps the world's Muslims should consider investing more in
standard education and less in blaming the Jews for all their problems.

          Muslims must ask 'what can they do for humankind' before they
demand that humankind respects them!!

          Regardless of your feelings about the crisis between Israel
and the Palestinians and Arab neighbours, even if you believe there is
more culpability on Israel's part, the following two sentences really
say it all:

          'If the Arabs put down their weapons today, there would be no
more violence.  If the Jews put down their weapons today, there would be
no more Israel' -Benjamin Netanyahu

MERC said...

Is it too much, anon, to expect a little honesty from you? Instead of cutting & pasting this bullshit from Israeli PR Central, why not take a leaf out of Jabotinsky's book, and ask/answer yourself as he did :"Has ever been known that a people would willingly give up its soil? No more would the Palestinian Arabs yield their sovereignty by force." Or Amos Elon's, who said of the Palestinian refugees (whom you now expect to lay down their pea-shooters and kiss your arse): "We have a moral obligation because the road to Israel's independence was paved on the backs of these people, and they paid, with their bodies, their property, and their future, for the pogroms in the Ukraine and the Nazi gas chambers."

Michael said...

I admire anon's single minded ignorance.

So anon, what ever you do , don't read this,

Anonymous said...

Ok so we can both agree that Palestinains have an obligation to keep fighting likewise Israelies have an equal right to keep fighting for their cause, if Israelies happen to hit back a little harder then sobeit, nobody says war is fair The can be no doubt the Arabs and have at War with the Jews since 1948 it is obvious the Arabs and Muslims will never stand by the umpires decision [i.e The UN Mandate] back then for both Arabs and Jews to have their own states. We keep going around in circles ,I guess we have a stalemate?

Anonymous said...

To Anon at 9.39

What do you mean by Jews?

I have never seen Nobel winners listed as Christians, or as atheists. So it is not a religious connotation.

And from your list, it appears that people from several different countries are included. So it is not a national distinction.

You cannot mean affiliation to Israel because Albert Einstein is included and he was an anti-zionist strongly opposed to the formation of such a 'homeland'.

Do you mean rootless cosmopolitans? A tribe? But surely such a definitions are anti-semitic?

So - what do you mean?

MERC said...

Not so fast, anon 3:19. Please don't presume that "we... agree" with anything you say. Israelis have about as much "right to keep fighting for their cause" as the Nazis did in WW2. But, if you persist in entertaining us some more with your ignorance, please feel free to tell us all about that "UN Mandate" (aka "the umpire's decision").

Anonymous said...

here merc read and you may

Peter said...

MERC, a small request. Would it be too hard in the future to switch to hyperlinks? I mean, how many people would find the article referenced by "Israeli soldiers recall Gaza attack orders, Sheera Frenkel, The Times, 28/1/09", for example?

Maryam said...

To Anonymous with the list ..

What is ur point??..i mean seriously..u want to tell us that muslims are stupid but jews are smart??..well what about the millions of Arab chrestians??..none of them was a nobel prize winner!! that leads us to a very important conclusion, it's not about " FAITH", it's about the circumstances arabs live in, e.g dectatorships, poverity, corrupt governments..this all lead to bad education systems and as a result only few of arabs recieved nobel prizes.

Another point, i can see that u completely ignored the fact that there are hundreds of "Muslim" scholars that actually invented the basic scinces that jews take nobel prizes at!!!..those scholrs lived hundreds of years ago before Nobel was born, that's why they weren't awarded the nobel prizes!!..e.g " El Khawarezy" who invented the basics of Algebra, also " Ibn Roshd", "Ibn Sina"..etc..those "muslim" scholaars were able to achieve great things cuz they lived in good circumstances not like the ones muslims live in now.

do urself a favour and stop thinking that "jews" are the "chosen people"!!!!!!!!!!!

A mulsim Egyptian

Maryam said...

To Anonymous with the list ..

What is ur point??..i mean seriously..u want to tell us that muslims are stupid but jews are smart??..well what about the millions of Arab chrestians??..none of them was a nobel prize winner!! that leads us to a very important conclusion, it's not about " FAITH", it's about the circumstances arabs live in, e.g dectatorships, poverity, corrupt governments..this all lead to bad education systems and as a result only few of arabs recieved nobel prizes.

Another point, i can see that u completely ignored the fact that there are hundreds of "Muslim" scholars that actually invented the basic scinces that jews take nobel prizes at!!!..those scholrs lived hundreds of years ago before Nobel was born, that's why they weren't awarded the nobel prizes!!..e.g " El Khawarezy" who invented the basics of Algebra, also " Ibn Roshd", "Ibn Sina"..etc..those "muslim" scholaars were able to achieve great things cuz they lived in good circumstances not like the ones muslims live in now.

do urself a favour and stop thinking that "jews" are the "chosen people"!!!!!!!!!!!