Wednesday, October 5, 2016

The Unprecedented Ignorance of Julie Bishop

"The violence and the atrocities going on in Aleppo are unprecedented... like nothing we've seen in our lifetime." (Julie Bishop, in Bishop calls for Syria arms ban, David Wroe, Sydney Morning Herald, 3/10/16)

Especially the bombing of that hospital, eh Jules? Curse that butcher Asad! And yet, which country is usually singled out for blame whenever there's a blue on in the Middle East? That's right, Israel! Our very bestie over in that neck of the woods. Bloody anti-Semitism if you ask me!

Now you and I know Israel has been involved in some pretty nasty punch-ups over the years, strictly in self-defence, of course. After all, it's a pretty tough neighborhood over there, hey? In any case, I think it's safe to say that there's one thing at least our Israeli friends have never ever done, and that's target hospitals, right, Jules? Not like that butcher, Asad, and his Russki mates.

Oh, wait...

"It was at Akka Hospital [in West Beirut in 1982*] that I learnt my first word in Arabic: 'halas' - 'finished.' The school of nursing and the Arab centre for research and specialist treatment of injuries were both 'halas'. And the Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) had not lost just one hospital: thirteen clinics and nine hospitals all over Lebanon had been destroyed in this way. Only Gaza Hospital, for a reason I was to discover three years later, was still standing. At the height of the air raids, when the Palestinians found out that every single PRCS hospital and clinic was a bomb target, they put three Israeli soldiers captured in south Lebanon on the upper floors of Gaza Hospital, and radioed a message to the Israeli Army saying that any further military action on Gaza Hospital would result in Israeli lives being lost. That saved Gaza Hospital from further destruction. One of the staff who spoke English told us that Akka Hospital had been a five-storey building before the Israeli air raids." (From Beirut to Jerusalem: A Woman Surgeon with the Palestinians, Dr Swee Chai Ang, 1989, pp 22-23)

[*Bishop, 60, was a partner in the Adelaide law firm Mangan, Ey & Bishop in 1982.]


Grappler said...

Before I turned off in disgust yesterday, I caught another of those news items from the ABC about the Russians "bombing a hospital in Aleppo". It seems the whole of Australia gets its news on Syria from the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. The ABC regularly uses the "information" put out by that entity. What is SOHR? Here is an interesting article:

As to reports about hospitals being destroyed, b at Moon of Alabama has some interesting comments:

I can understand why Julie Bishop might want to use this kind of "information. If she doesn't get it from SOHR, she is probably told it by the Israelis. She has a political agenda and it makes sense for her to do that. But I am very angry the ABC's ongoing insistence on using a long discredited source. As a lifelong supporter of public broadcasting, since the advent of the internet I have come to realise that it too has a political agenda. Thank goodness we now have a range of sources (all perhaps with their own agendas) but at least we have the likes of MOA which reminds us of the inconsistencies in "reporting" of the likes of SOHR. I wonder how much longer we will be allowed to have access to such sources.

Grappler said...

Another lie of the so-called "news" on Syria we read in the Australian press is the term "brutal dictator" for Assad. It seems to have become the norm.

I don't have enough unbiased information on whether or not Assad is "brutal" but he was elected to power in an election that had international observers:

I doubt if the upcoming presidential election in the US will have as big a turn-out. I look forward to seeing the election of the next brutal (which they almost certainly will be) dictator of the US.

Grappler said...

Here is a site that seems to be trying to understand what is really happening in Syria (and Ukraine).

The site is a bit messy but real news on the situation in Syria often is. What is clear is that when Kerry or Bishop says "Russia bombed a hospital" it is entirely propaganda.

Grappler said...

Sorry to bombard you with comments, MERC, but Western reporting of the war in Syria really makes me see red. Here is a comment - posted on off-guardian today - that the Guardian, that defender of free speech and liberalism, refused to publish about Syria:

You can comment on anything to do with Syria as long as your view is the same as ours. George Orwell must be turning in his grave!

If only the Guardian editor would read some of the articles he publishes:

MERC said...

The Guardian's editor, Jonathan Freeland, is a card-carrying Zionist.

MERC said...

Sorry: Freedland.

Grappler said...

Yes! So are most of our political leaders.

Here's a video everyone should watch. You won't see this on the ABC.

Anonymous said...

Letter writers to yesterdays Sydney Morning Herald, that is the ones published, made a number of comparisons to the bombing of Syria, Dresden and Vietnam spring to mind.

Curiously no published letter made any comparison to the relentless and routine bombing of Gaza. A Kosher civilian bombing programme which also includes hospitals. One hospital, previously mentioned on this site, was Australian funded. Presumably, because Palestinians are on the receiving end, 'our' media thinks they obviously deserve to be bombed and obliterated and their destruction unreported. Blame the victim.

Imagine if the Syrian victims were accused of 'using the population as human shields' or 'fighting from civilian areas', the usually accepted and media amplified Bandit State propaganda for such barbarism.

Sometimes omissions tell us more than the inclusions.

Grappler said...

"Dresden and Vietnam sprint to mind" ....Or Fallujah:

“The logic is: You flatten Fallujah, hold up the head of Fallujah, and say 'Do our bidding, or you're next,' ” says Toby Dodge, an Iraq analyst at the International Institute of Strategic Studies in London."

“One thought going around now is: 'Why doesn't Iraq look like [post-World War II] Germany or Japan, which knew they had been defeated?' ” says John Pike, a military analyst who heads in Alexandria, Va. “One of the challenges we are facing now is these people don't know they have been defeated,” he says. “Fallujah will be an opportunity for them to be crushed decisively and for them to taste defeat. ”,_the_information_war_and_U.S._propaganda