Monday, January 30, 2017

Lest We Forgot...

"Bill & Hillary Clinton & Obama until LAST WEEK murdered a million Muslims. Trump imposed a travel ban. And HE is the No 1 villain?" (George Galloway tweet, 30/1/17)

Nobody Does It Better

Nobody does hypocrisy better than the Israelis.

The next time you hear Zionist propaganda about Israeli doctors patching up wounded Syrians at Israel's Ziv Medical Center,* or Israel planning to take in - temporarily, of course - 100 Syrian orphans,** remember brave young Ahmad Hassan Shubeir:

"A 17-year-old Palestinian died last week after Israeli authorities refused to allow him to leave the besieged Gaza Strip to undergo treatment for a congenital heart defect, the Gaza-based al-Mezan Center for Human Rights said in a report on Sunday. Israeli authorities had denied Ahmad Hassan Shubeir from Gaza City permission to cross into Israel to receive life-saving medical treatment from a hospital after the teen 'refused to serve as a collaborator for the Israeli authorities, a coercive measure regularly employed on Palestinian patients in need of permits,' according to the center... " (Report: Palestinian teen dies in Gaza after Israel denies him access to hospital,, 24/1/17)

[*See my 12/12/14 post A Side of Israel the World Too Rarely Acknowledges; **Report: Israel okays historic plan to absorb child refugees from Syria war,, 26/1/17]

Sunday, January 29, 2017

First Bomb, Then Ban

"Now arrives the hour of action." Trump's inauguration speech, 20/1/17

"Donald Trump is now officially gunning for Muslims. On Friday, he signed an executive order titled Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States. The order is nothing short of a Muslim ban by another name. It is cruel and callous, espouses positions contrary to the professed values of the United States, and will certainly produce more problems than it purports to solve. In other words, it's exactly like Donald Trump...

"Friday's executive order initiates an immediate 90-day suspension of issuing visa to people from select countries, which currently are Iraq, Iran, Syria, Yemen, Libya, Sudan and Somalia. The list could be expanded. But do you notice anything peculiar about this particular group of nations? It can't be that nationals of all those countries have committed acts of terrorism in the United States, because they haven't. But it is true that six of the seven countries are currently being bombed by the United States, and that most of these countries have also suffered invasions or overthrows by the US.

"First, we bomb you. Then we ban you." (Donald Trump's executive order means he is now officially gunning for Muslims, Moustafa Bayoumi,, 28/1/17)

Trita Parsi tweet: "I want to repeat: Green card holders were handcuffed, their social media was reviewed, and they were asked their views on Trump." (29/1/17)

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Latest Bishop Robocall

Hello, you've reached the office of the world's Australia's most stylish robot foreign minister, Julie Bishop. If you'd like to know the government's position on [...] Israeli settlements, press 8... You have pressed 8. The Australian Government is unconcerned about the significant recent settlement announcement in the West Bank. We continue to call on both sides to avoid unilateral actions that diminish the prospects of a negotiated two-state solution. Thank you.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Sectarian Cleansing in Syria?

Lies from dodgy sources peddled by Western msm stenographers, aka Middle East correspondents, are an integral part of selling the US-led regime-change operation in Syria. One of the worst offenders is the Guardian's Martin Chulov (formerly of Murdoch's Australian).

Chulov's signature contribution to these lies is the allegation that Damascus and Tehran are involved in a deliberate process of sectarian cleansing in Syria.* In his latest piece, Iran repopulates Syria with Shia Muslims to help tighten regime's control (13/1/17), Chulov asserts that the Iranians are repopulating areas from which Sunni Syrians have fled with Iraqi and Lebanese Shiites.

Were this true, it would indeed be a disturbing development. The Angry Arab News Service provides us with the following corrective "from a journalist working in Syria":

"Chulov's article is very problematic. Its allegations are false and its methodology is flawed. You cannot write an article making such allegations from Lebanon without collecting evidence empirically, without field visits etc, and you cannot write such an article by relying purely on pro-insurgent sources, or even sources who are insurgent officials.

"There are no population swaps in Syria. Iran has no project to alter the social landscape in Syria. That's not why it's in Syria. Iran seeks to support the Assad government for a variety of reasons, but not out of a sectarian project. It would say that Assad is their only reliable partner and is part of the resistance axis; that if he fell, then the whole system would collapse; that if they tried to replace him, then his replacement would sell them out to the Saudis or the Americans; that there is a salafi/wahhabi/takfiri threat coming from Syria which threatens the region, and that they want to stop it in Syria.

"Shias are 1% of Syria's population. Iran works with Sunni militias in Aleppo. These are things you don't know if you report on Syria remotely.

"Chulov says that: 'Russia, in an alliance with Turkey, is using a nominal ceasefire to push for a political consensus between the Assad regime and the exiled opposition.' No. In fact, the exiled opposition seems not to be invited to the talks, only insurgent groups, and it's not so much to reach a political consensus as to impose a new order. Chulov makes a string of baseless assertions and then quotes 'one senior Lebanese leader ' [as saying that 'Iran and the regime don't want any Sunnis between Damascus and Homs and the Lebanese border... Key for Iran are the rebel-held towns of Zabadani and Madaya.']

"Hizballah actually works with Sunni militias in the area between Damascus and Homs. There are senior security officials in Damascus who are Sunnis from the region between Damascus and Homs. Zabadani and Madaya are not key for Iran for the reasons Chulov alleges. First, those two towns are key to Hizballah more than Iran, and this is because Hizballah saw itself as pursuing a Lebanese homeland security strategy which required protecting Lebanon from the car bombs entering it from Western Syria and securing the towns on the border. But once Zabadani and Madaya were surrounded and neutralized as threats (there was a Nusra and Ahrar al-Sham presence there as well as a small ISIS presence) they realized they had a bargaining chip.

"Two Shia towns in Idlib (Fua and Kfarya) have been surrounded and tightly besieged since 2015, with supplies occasionally dropped by air while they were shelled and sniped at by insurgents in adjacent towns. Many of Syria's 230,000 Shia have joined the local branch of Hizballah, and they were furious that their brethren were besieged. This was an issue for Iran, and Iranian officials mentioned the potential 'genocide' in Fua and Kfarya every chance they got. They were obsessed with it. They therefore negotiated a deal in Turkey with Ahrar al-Sham that did NOT involve population exchanges but was still an ugly precedent. On one side, largely Shia forces held two Sunni towns hostage. On the other, Sunni forces held two Shia towns hostage. In Idlib, local factions were also profiting from selling supplies to Fua and Kfarya at very high rates. Anyway, the deal was not an exchange of people, but if a loaf of bread goes into Zabadani, then a loaf has to go into Fua, and if ten bandages go into Madaya, then ten have to go into the two Shia towns in Idlib [province]. And if a sick or wounded person is evacuated from one of the two Sunni towns, then the same thing must take place in the two Shia towns.

"The Syrian government was unhappy about the sectarian nature of this arrangement, and it has not been repeated. But the government would not accept sectarian population exchanges, and no Shias want to go and live in Zabadani and Madaya anyway. When Shias are displaced in Syria, they move into other Shia towns or neighborhoods, or with friends or relatives. The deals that have involved the evacuation of insurgents and their families have been mischaracterized in the media. They are not forced to go to insurgent-held areas in the north such as Idlib. They are given an option by the government forces, either stay and renounce the insurgency or leave to insurgent-held areas in the north, and in most towns where such deals have taken place we actually see an increase in the population because conditions improve and displaced people return. The UN in Syria has not recorded any population exchanges taking place and no outsiders have been imported to live in other peoples' homes. Chulov accepts without any skepticism the statements of an Ahrar al-Sham official based in Turkey who represents a salafi, jihadist, overtly sectarian group. He does not ask for evidence, he just repeats the claims.

"Chulov refers to Wadi Barada and the ongoing fighting there. Hizballah barely has a presence there and acts like special forces supporting the Syrian army's Republican Guard, which is fighting to regain control of the water supply to Damascus which was held by insurgents. In fact, quite a few senior government officials are from Wadi Barada, including the head of the Baath Party and security committee for the rif dimashq province, which reminds me that the governor of Aleppo, a former security officer himself, is from Zabadani.

"Chulov also repeats the lie that Iraqi Shia families have moved into Daraya. They have not. They would not be allowed to anyway, and nobody is moving in because the government is rehabilitating it and has asked international NGOs for help in doing so in order to return the displaced from Daraya. Chulov did not visit Daraya. He did not speak with people in Damascus. He did not ask UN or other NGO officials, he merely repeated opposition claims. Syrian state media did not announce that the Iraqis had arrived at all. There was a destroyed Shia shrine there and some Shia visited it, and from that opposition media sources crafted a story. I'd love to know why an Iraqi Shia would want to move into a bombed-out, abandoned neighborhood with no services, even if the Syrian government would allow such a thing - which they wouldn't. Reporting on Syria requires no standards at all it seems.

"Likewise, the Umayyad Mosque [in Damascus] is not a security zone controlled by Iranian proxies. Chulov, who has not been there, is relying on an insurgent, who also has not been there, to repeat an absurd claim. I was there a week ago. The Umayyad Mosque is in the same situation it was before the conflict, and in the hands of the same forces responsible for securing it before the conflict, the normal Syrian security forces, and anyone can visit it just as before, and there is no Shia plan for it. In fact, if Damascenes even thought there was such a plan they would go crazy and demand that Assad halt such a plan. The Syrian regime has always been very sensitive to the concerns of the Damascene conservative class, and that's why this class has remained loyal.

"There has not been a 'systematic torching of Land Registry offices in areas recaptured on behalf of the regime.' This is without evidence, and in a system as obsessed with paperwork and security as the Syrian one, it would be unthinkable, and most senior officials are Sunni as are most state employees, and they often come from insurgent-held areas - the idea doesn't make any sense. Likewise it is not true that most residents of Zabadani have gone to Idlib. Only a fraction went there because they did not accept the deal. The rest are displaced in the area around it, in Damascus or outside of Syria.

"It often seems like all standards have been abandoned when it comes to writing on Syria." (On Martin Chulov of the Guardian (he is competing with Liz Sly for being the worst correspondent in Beirut), 26/1/17)

[*See also Martin Chulov & The Guardian: at the forefront of Balkanising Syria, Phil Greaves,, 23/7/13.]

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Invasion Day 1917

"We ought to feel that we have invaded a domain from which our invasion has expelled those who were born, bred, and providentially supplied in it; that we have driven by our usurpation, families from their birth-place, and then completed our cruelty by destroying in sport, and consuming for profit, the principal means of their subsistence."

- Letter published in Hobart Town Gazette, 25 July 1824, quoted in This Whispering in Our Hearts, Henry Reynolds, 1998,  p 7

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Centre-Left Delusions

Note the Zionist chameleon in this gathering:

"As a wave of left- and right-wing populism sweeps the US, Europe, Asia and Australia, the Labor Party will convene a meeting of high-level operatives in Sydney from today to chart a future for the Centre Left around the world. Senior figures from a dozen parties and think tanks in the US, Britain, Canada, Ireland, Germany, Israel, Argentina, Denmark, Sweden and New Zealand will share ideas on policy, campaigning and political strategy. The three-day International Progressive Campaign Forum, jointly organised by Labor and the Progressive Alliance umbrella group, is the only event of its kind in the world and will bring together like-minded social-democratic, labour and progressive parties and think tanks. Labor's assistant national secretary Sebastian Zwalf said the Centre Left must find a way to connect with communities that are vulnerable to the appeals of fringe parties on the Left and the Right at a time of economic and social upheaval'." (Parties meet to combat populism, Troy Bramston, The Australian, 23/1/17)

I guess if these social-democratic parties really believe that free market capitalism can be civilised, they can also believe that the Zionist, Jews-only, settler-colonial 'Labor' Party of David Ben-Gurion, which led the military offensive to ethnically cleanse Palestine of most of its non-Jewish majority in 1948, and went on to lay the groundwork for an apartheid Jewish state in Arab Palestine, is just another social-democratic party in good standing.


Tuesday, January 24, 2017

An Israeli Plot to Take Over the UK

The complete failure of the British government to respond to Al Jazeera's brilliant exposure of Israeli embassy operative Shai Masot, plotting to "take down" one of its ministers, reminds me of an episode in Lewis Gilbert's classic 1980 British play, Educating Rita.

Remember when Rita's academic supervisor, Dr Frank Bryant, is officially reprimanded for being drunk while giving a lecture, and she asks him if the university is going to sack him? "Good God no," Frank replies,"That would involve making a decision. Pissed is all right. To get the sack, it would have be rape on a grand scale. And not just with the students, either. That would only amount to a slight misdemeanour. No, for dismissal, it would have to be nothing less than buggering the Bursar."

For Dr Bryant, think Israeli ambassador to the UK, Mark Regev. He has just been informed by an aide that one of his senior diplomats, Shai Masot, has been caught on video, plotting to take down a British cabinet minister:
Regev: Sod them, eh Rachel! Sod them!
Aide: Will they expel you, Ambassador?
Regev: Good God no. That would involve making a decision. Plotting to take down a minister is all right. To get expelled, it would have to be rape on a grand scale. And not just with cabinet ministers, either. That would only amount to a slight misdemeanour. No, for expulsion it would have to be nothing less than buggering the Prime Minister.

And even then...

Comedy aside, on those rare occasions when Israeli infiltration, manipulation, and corruption of the political processes of Western nations is exposed, it is perhaps less the fact of the subversion that shocks (for that, as anyone with an in-depth knowledge of the Zionist project in Palestine knows, is the nature of the beast) as the supine, look-away, nothing-to-see-here attitude of Western political and media elites.

The following analysis by Mohammed Javed, Where is the outcry over Israel's 'Trojan Horse' in Britain?, examines the meaning and ramifications of the Masot affair, and addresses the question of what should be done about it:

"Put yourself in the shoes of a country, economically rich, culturally diverse, and relatively stable in terms of government. Now imagine that a senior diplomat of a foreign country conspired with like-minded individuals to interfere in your affairs and influence who runs your government. Along with that, imagine that same diplomat admitted he helped set up political groups in order to garner support for his own country, with links and funding coming from that same country.

"Well, imagine no longer, because that is exactly what happened when senior Israeli diplomat, Shai Masot, was captured on video conspiring to 'take down' certain UK government ministers such as Sir Alan Duncan, who has spoken out against Israeli policy and sympathised with the plight of the Palestinians. Recorded by an undercover journalist from Al Jazeera's Investigative Unit, it also captured the moment Masot admitted he helped set up pro-Israel political groups embedded within the major parties.

"What would be the logical reaction to such blatant foreign intervention and subtle infiltration? A full-on investigation? A furious purging of the national parties from such influences? Or at least a show of outrage for dramatic effect? Actually, none of that has been done. There have been no extensive discussions and debates on national radio stations such as LBC as would have happened even if the pound falls by a penny, and there was no front-page coverage on any national television station or media outlet apart from a few mentions on the morning after it was exposed. Most importantly, there has been no investigation launched into the issue.

"Let us now compare this to the 'Trojan Horse' scandal which erupted a few years ago in 2014, when there was a frenzy of debate, public fear and drama in the UK officialdom about Muslims apparently taking over the education system and implementing conservative Salafi views on innocent schoolchildren. Based on a whiff of a few leaked letters, all of which could have been fabricated, investigations were launched, arrests were made and the monstrous Prevent programme was fuelled.

"Now, however, definitive evidence has been released of Israeli diplomats plotting to to take down MPs and ministers of this country who do not conform with Israel's policies, as well as confirmation that it was the Israel embassy itself that created and funded Israeli lobby groups to influence the politics of major UK political parties. An invasion of Britain's democratic political body is taking place and has been exposed, yet no investigation is being launched and the government 'considers the matter closed.' Prime Minister Theresa May has herself quickly shut down calls for the matter to be investigated, and the speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow, does not 'think it will be helpful to dwell on the matter.'

"This is not, however, the only case of aggressive Israeli lobbying and interference in British politics, but is in fact proving to be more than a simple coincidence as more recordings are being revealed to the public. Maria Strizzolo, former aide to MP Robert Halfon and the woman who was seen conspiring with Masot in the London restaurant that evening, boasted of influencing Halfon to voice statements in Parliament in support of Israel while she was working under him.

"Another revelation of Israeli infiltration released shortly after that was that of the National Union of Students (NUS) and the attempted ousting of Malia Bouattia, its first non-white and Muslim president, who is also a vocal supporter of Palestinian rights and the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement - all attributes needed to land on Israel's hit list. The vice president of the NUS, Richard Brooks, held secret meetings with pro-Israeli parliamentary officers such as Michael Rubin and directors of the Union of Jewish Students (UJS) to overthrow the recently elected president and impose their own figure along with their views, especially the banning of the BDS movement within the Union.

"All of these revelations prove one thing overall: the gradual and deliberate takeover of of the UK by a secret Israeli cabal. A network of individuals in high social and political positions who share the same dangerous psychotic views in support of the continued occupation and oppression of Palestine and its people, along with its other countless objectives for the Middle East, which go far beyond that. This silent revolution obtains its funds directly from Tel Aviv itself, and benefits neither Britain's interests nor the interests of world peace in general. It makes one wonder what has befallen the government, the media, and the people of Britain to make them so apathetic in the face of this invasion.

"The country's solution and road to recovery would need to be one both diplomatic and practical, and would consist firstly of conducting a full, thorough and honest investigation into the Israeli infiltration of the British government. If necessary, there should be arrests, forced resignations or at least demotions of all those found guilty. The next step would be to purge all the UK's political parties - particularly the ruling Conservatives and the divided Labour - of all harmful influence from the Israeli lobby. This would include installing measures and frequently monitoring groups such as Conservative Friends of Israel (CFI) and Labour Friends of Israel (LFI) to ensure that such forces do not again corrupt British politics.

"This is not 'anti-Semitism', but rather a matter of national security. The government and the British people pursued the wrong enemy in the pointless drama of Operation Trojan Horse. There is no Islamic plot to take over the UK, but there is an Israeli one." (, 21/1/17)

Monday, January 23, 2017

The Solitary Crusade of Congressman Ted Lieu

"It's very clear to me that there's not enough discussion about what is happening in Yemen and the United States' participation in direct military operations there, refueling jets that then drop bombs on civilians, and that is morally outrageous. If the US was doing this with our own pilots, they'd be getting court-martialed right now...

"So the US has been refueling the Saudi-led military coalition and those [Saudi/UAE] jets go drop bombs in Yemen, and, according to various reports, about one third of these bombs end up hitting civilians nowhere near military targets. They look like war crimes, and I want that to stop, and I believe the US should not be assisting a military coalition that has engaged in over 70 unlawful airstrikes.

"[My] role is to try and get the [US] administration to change course, so I've written multiple letters to the administration. I have met with administration officials. I have participated in hearings on Yemen. And, as a result of my efforts, as well as those of humanitarian organisations, the administration is now doing an internal review of what the heck we're doing in Yemen, and that's a positive step.

"The second thing I'm trying to do is just raise awareness... If you look at the way our system is set up, there is no superpath out there that is advocating for Yemen, there is no lobby raising money for Yemen, and my view is that if I don't speak out against what's happening there, then who else is? It helps national security too, because every bomb that drops with US assistance on a Yemeni child is going to be a powerful recruiting tool for terrorists." (Fueling Yemen's war: A congressman calls out the US for potential war crimes in Yemen, interview with Joshua Hersh,, 18/1/17)

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Politics in the Age of the Robocall

Hello, you've reached the office of Australian foreign minister Julie Bishop. If you'd like to know the government's position on the Israel/Palestine conflict press 1. For Syria, press 2.... You have pressed 1. The Coalition Government has consistently not supported one-sided resolutions targeting Israel. The most important priority must be a resumption of direct negotiations between the Israelis and the Palestinians for a two-state solution as soon as possible. Thank you.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

My Thoughts onTrumps's Inauguration Speech

"Stay strong Israel, January 20th is fast approaching!" Trump tweet following UNSC resolution 2334 of December 23, 2016

That pre-inaugural tweet really says it all, but, for what they're worth, here are my (gloomy) thoughts on aspects of Trump's blatantly populist, no-specifics inauguration speech of 20/1/17:

* "We are transferring power from Washington DC and giving it back to you, the people... January 20, 2017 will be remembered as the day the people became the rulers of this nation again."

Total bullshit, of course.

* "For many decades, we've... subsidized the armies of other countries... That is past."

And the US$38 billion dollars worth of arms Obomber pledged to Israel last year?

* "From this day forward, it's going to be only America first, America first."

First to veto any resolution critical of Israel in the UN Security Council, that is.

* "We will reinforce old alliances and form new ones - and unite the civilized world against radical Islamic terrorism, which we will eradicate from the face of the Earth."

It's the reinforcing of old alliances that particularly worries me. As for "radical Islamic terrorism," you'll be reading the riot act to Saudi Arabia and Qatar, right? Oh yeah....

* "At the bedrock of our politics will be a total allegiance to the United States of America..."

And the bedrock of our Middle East policy will be a total allegiance to Israel.

* "The Bible tells: 'How good and pleasant it is when God's people live together in unity'... We are protected by God..."

OFFS... God's on our side.

* "Now arrives the hour of action."

Chaos, confusion and disorder, your time has come.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Obomber: Image & Reality

The image:

"Against a backdrop of stars and stripes and presidential seal flags, Obama stood at the podium at the White House for the very last time. Over eight years, at this spot, he has addressed the nation through highs and lows, sometimes choking with emotion when responding to incidents of gun violence." (Barack Obama's final press conference pep talk: 'I think we're going to be OK',,

The reality:

"As President Obama leaves office, much of his foreign policy record remains shrouded in the symbolism that has been the hallmark of his presidency. The persistence of Obama's image as a reluctant war-maker and a Nobel Peace Prize winner has allowed Donald Trump and his cabinet nominees to claim that Obama has underfunded the military and been less than aggressive in his use of US military might. Nothing could be further from the truth, and their claims are clearly designed only to justify even more extravagant military spending and more aggressive threats and uses of force than those perpetrated under Mr Obama's 'disguised, quiet, media-free' war policy.

"The reality is that Obama has increased US military spending beyond the post-World War II record set by President George W. Bush. Now that Obama has signed the military budget for FY2017, the final record is that Obama has spent an average of $653.6 billion per year, outstripping Bush by an average of $18.7 billion per year (in 2016 dollars). In historical terms, after adjusting for inflation, Obama's military spending has been 56% higher than Clinton's, 16% higher than Reagan's, and 42% more than the US Cold War average, when it was justified by military competition with a real peer competitor in the Soviet Union. By contrast, Russia now spends one-tenth of what we are pouring into military forces, weapon-building and war.

"What all this money has paid for is the polar opposite of what most of Obama's supporters thought they were voting for in 2008. Behind the iconic image of a hip, sophisticated celebrity-in-chief with strong roots in modern urban culture, lies a calculated contrast between image and reality that has stretched our country's neoliberal experiment in 'managed democracy' farther than ever before and set us up for the previously unthinkable 'post-truth' presidency of Donald Trump.

"Obama's doctrine of covert and proxy war was modeled on the Phoenix Program in Vietnam in the 1960s and 1970s and Ronald Reagan's proxy wars in Central America in the 1980s. It involved a massive expansion of US special operations forces, now deployed to 138 different countries, compared with only 60 when Obama took office. As senior military officers told the Washington Post in June 2010, the Obama administration allowed, 'things that the previous administration did not,' and, They are talking publicly much less but they are acting more. They are willing to get aggressive much more quickly.' Whenever possible, US forces have recruited and trained proxy forces to do the actual fighting and dying, from the Iraqi government's Shiite death squads to Al Qaeda splinter groups in Libya and Syria (supporting 'regime change' projects in those countries) to mercenaries serving Arab monarchies and seemingly endless cannon fodder for the war in Afghanistan.

"Obama's ten-fold expansion of drone strikes further reduced US casualties relative to numbers of foreigners killed. This fostered an illusion of peace and normality for Americans in the homeland even as the death toll inflicted by America's post-9/11 wars almost certainly passed the two million mark. The targets of these covert and proxy wars are not just guerrilla fighters or 'terrorists' but also the 'infrastructure' or 'civilian support mechanism' that supports guerrillas with food and supplies, and the entire shadow government and civil society in areas that resist domination. As a US officer in Iraq explained to Newsweek in 2005, 'The Sunni population is paying no price for the support it is giving the terrorists. From their point of view, it is cost-free. We have to change that equation.' [...]

"Obama's failure was the result of his deference to generals, admirals, the CIA and hawkish advisers like secretary of State Hillary Clinton and ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power, and of his blind faith in US military power. But war was never a legitimate or effective response to terrorism. The misuse of military force has only spread violence and chaos across the Muslim world and spawned an explosive mix of political disintegration, rule by militias and warlords, a dizzying proliferation of armed groups with different interests and loyalties and, ultimately, more blowback for the West. Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Turkey, Israel, Qatar and other 'allies' have been only too eager to exploit and redirect our aggression against their own enemies: Iran, Syria, Libya; and different ethnic groups, minorities and political movements in what was, for centuries, a diverse, tolerant region of the world. The US has become a blind giant stumbling through a thick forest of shadows and unseen dangers, striking out with its devastating war machine at the instigation of self-serving allies and the same dark forces in its own 'intelligence' bureaucracy who have stirred up trouble, staged coups and unleashed war in country after country for 70 years. The only consistent beneficiary in all this death, destruction and chaos is the 'military industrial complex' that President Eisenhower warned us against in his farewell address in 1961.

"In 2012, I researched and wrote about how General Dynamics CEO Lester Crown and his Chicago family backed and bankrolled the political career of Barack Obama. As manufacturers of Virginia class submarines, Arleigh Burke and Zumwalt destroyers and littoral combat ships (all programs saved, revived or expanded by Obama) as well as other types of munitions, the Crown family's patronage of Barack Obama has proven to be a profitable investment, from the violence and chaos in the Muslim world to the New Cold War with Russia to the 'pivot' to the South China Sea. Now Mr Trump has nominated General Dynamics board member, General James 'Mad Dog' Mattis as Secretary of Defense, despite his responsibility for illegal rules of engagement and systematic war crimes in Iraq, an obvious conflict of interest with the millions he has earned at General Dynamics and clear laws that require civilian control of the military.

"When will we ever learn to tell the difference between corrupt warmongers like Obama and Mattis and progressive leaders who will let us live in peace with our neighbors around the world, even at the expense of General Dynamics' profits?" (Obama's bombing legacy, Nicolas J.S. Davies,, 18/1/17)

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Joe Blow

George Carlin once said: "Bullshit is the glue that binds us as a nation."

If so, it's the msm that dispenses the bullshit.

Take for example, journalist Laura Gambino's panegyric on Joe Biden in The Guardian:

"The vice-president will leave office with a favorable image and a reputation as authentic, a rare attribute for a politician, let alone a longtime establishment one." (Joe Biden brought laughs, gaffes & authenticity to White House, 19/1/17)

For the real Joe Biden, we must go to the alternative media:

"Joe Biden was a terrible senator... He was, throughout his career, a tool of the Zionist lobby. He once had lunch with a foreign policy person I knew to discuss the Middle East. I asked him if he was one of those people who criticize Israel in private, but then says that he can't say it in public. He said, 'No, he speaks in AIPAC talking points in private and in public.' He has a history of plagiarism, fake claims and fabrications. He has no legislative record to speak of. He is annoying and sleazy. Yet liberals are in love with him because they have no one else to love." (The liberal love for Joe Biden, The Angry Arab News Service, 18/1/17)

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Our Debt to Israel

Italy had its Oriana Fallaci, Britain's got its Melanie Phillips, and, not to be outdone, Australia's got... Jennifer Oriel:

"Thank God for Israel. If it weren't for the Jews, the UN would have to battle despots, communists and Islamists." (Say goodbye to a UN that attacks the free world, The Australian, 9/1/17)

How lucky are we, who live in the "free world," to have "the Jews" battling "despots, communists and Islamists" on our behalf?

How fortunate that these Israeli brave hearts should do what they do, solely for our benefit, solely to protect us from the gathering Forces of Darkness... out there... in the night.

How fortunate, too, that we have Jennifer Oriel to remind us of their sacrifice. Because, without it, how could we possibly sleep at night?

So what exactly is it that they do?

Gideon Levy tells us:

"What do you call a regime that every night drags people from their beds? How would you label mass detentions without a warrant? How would you define brutal home searches in the dead of night, some of which have no purpose except as training exercises? What should we call such acts, which the army, the border Police and the Shin Bet security service carry out nightly? What should we call the state in whose name they act - a democracy, the only one in the Middle East? Do you recall dark regimes, think of Latin American juntas, are shocked by Turkey? Welcome to Israel's occupation of the West bank, night after night, just a short drive from your home.

"Each morning, in its Twitter account, the IDF describes its misdeeds of the previous night with a touch of pride: 'During the night our forces arrested wanted men who are suspected of popular terror activities and violent disturbances. They were handed over to the security forces for interrogation.' Wanted men, popular terror, disturbances - the language is polished yet stilted, with childish Hebrew acronyms that seem to conceal a secret. The wording is formulaic, without naming or otherwise disclosing the humanity of the detainees. The army is like a nighttime hunter who each morning displays his nightly catch. Last week there was a night with 23 arrests, 14 the previous week, 10 and 11 in the weeks before that. There is no night without such abductions. Who are they? What did they do? Who cares? They are all part of the 'popular terror' movement, all of them now in the hands of the security services.

"Sometimes, there's a special treat: 'Last night our forces sealed off an apartment and a warehouse in Nablus, which had served for the preparation of terror explosive devices.' Explosive devices? An apartment, a warehouse? By what authority? Nablus is in Area A, supposedly controlled by the Palestinians, but who cares about such trifles? Occasionally there is money involved. 'During the operations of the Etzion Territorial Brigade, our sources seized thousands of shekels that were used to finance terror. These were transferred to the security services.' Sometimes it borders on the grotesque: 'The forces of the Ephraim Territorial Brigade also arrested a person suspected of violent and disorderly conduct in which he climbed onto an army vehicle two months ago. He was sent for interrogation by security forces.' He climbed on a vehicle? Should we laugh, or cry?

"To anyone familiar with the nature of these operations, there is nothing funny about them. They are stomach-turning. Hundreds of thousands of people live in constant terror: children who wet their beds, parents who are afraid to even close an eye. The soldiers blow up the doors of the homes and invade. Before you can even understand what is happening there are dozens of armed men, their faces sometimes covered, in your home, in your bedroom, in your children's bedrooms, in the bathroom. This is how the nightmare begins, the search and the arrests, with neither an explanation nor a court order.

"Sometimes the occupants are pulled out of their home and into the street, without being allowed to get dressed. Occasionally a father is beaten in front of his children. Frequently belongings are broken. All accompanied by bullying and humiliation. Tear gas is often sprayed at the neighbors, outside. These are traumatic experiences for any human being. There is no Palestinian who has not experienced it. There is no Israeli who can imagine it. I once spent a night in the Jenin refugee camp. When soldiers approached the home I was staying in, I almost died of fright. In the end they did not come in, but I will never forget those moments of terror. That's only the beginning of the nightmare. Then the 'wanted person' is taken, handcuffed and blindfolded, for an interrogation whose end is difficult to predict. It will go on for weeks and it will involve humiliation and torture, sometimes without any foundation. Nearly one million Palestinians have been arrested in this manner in the course of the occupation. Nearly one million.

"The Palestinian news agency Ma'an reported last week, based on a United Nations report, that between October 4 and October 17 there were 178 such nighttime raids, around 14 each night. This, in a time of relative calm, apart from the lone-wolf attacks that no raid can prevent. A girl who seeks to die won't be arrested at night. The nighttime terror may actually drive others to another desperate attack.

"Every night, while you were sleeping. And afterward there are more Israelis who dare to claim - out of ignorance or chutzpah - that the occupation is over, or at least that discussing it bores them." (Good morning from the Israeli army's Twitter account, Haaretz, 6/11/16)

So next time you go to bed for a good night's sleep, spare a thought for those on the front line, in far-away Israel, who are making it all possible. Thank God for Israel! And bless you, Jennifer.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Be Very Afraid: Trump on the Middle East

The late (2008), great George Carlin once quipped: "When you're born you get a ticket to the freak show. When you're born in America, you get a front-row seat." Could there be a more apt description of the coming Trump administration than 'freak show'?

What would Carlin, who famously remarked that so many people were either stupid, or full of shit, or fucking nuts, and that one-time presidential wannabe Dan Quayle was all three, have said about Donald Trump?

OK, so brace yourselves. Here, from The Trump interviews: what he said about Brexit, Putin, Israel, Syria... & Twitter (Kate Connolly,, 16/1/17) is Trump on the Middle East. (Note the highlighted words.):


"The Times: Trump said he would not reveal the details of his policy - 'I just don't want to play the cards' - but reiterated his attack on Barack Obama's landmark deal with Iran on nuclear weapons. 'I'm not happy with the Iran deal, I think it's one of the worst deals ever made, I think it's one of the dumbest deals I've ever seen... Where you give... $150bn back to a country, where you give $1.7bn in cash. Did you ever see $100m in hundred dollar bills? It's a lot. $1.7bn in cash. Plane loads'."

Just read that over and over again...


"The Times: Trump was critical of Obama for failing to restrain Syrian president Bashar al-Assad and Putin in their war on rebel forces in the country. The US could have made them stick to 'a line in the sand' but now it was 'too late' and the lack of western intervention had helped to create a humanitarian crisis. 'Aleppo was nasty. I mean when you see them shooting old ladies walking out of town - they can't even walk and they're shooting 'em - it almost looks like they're shooting 'em for sport - ah no, that's... a terrible situation.'

"Bild: Trump said he thought security zones should have been set up in Syria. 'That would have been considerably cheaper. And the Gulf states should have had to pay for them. After all, they have money like hardly anyone else has. The whole thing would have been considerably cheaper than the trauma that Germany is now going through. I would have said: create security zones in Syria'."

What the hell Trump was watching here is anyone's guess. As for the Gulf states, they are, of course, among those US clients directly responsible for the refugee-generating murder and mayhem in Syria.


"The Times: The invasion of Iraq in 2003, he said, was 'possibly the worst decision' ever made in American history. 'It's like throwing rocks into a beehive'."

I'd like to think Trump will hold this thought long enough to prevent a repeat performance elsewhere in the Middle East but I seriously doubt his attention span is up to it.

Middle East & Jared Kushner:

"Bild: Trump said that he would appoint Jared Kushner, his son-in-law, to broker a Middle East peace deal. Asked what role Kushner would play, Trump said: 'You know what? Jared is such a good lad, he will secure a good deal which no one else has managed to get. You know, he's a natural talent, he is the top, he is a natural talent. He has an innate ability to make deals, everyone likes him.' Kushner's wife, Trump's daughter Ivanka, would not have any role in government, he said. She currently 'has the kids' and was busy buying a house in Washington.

"He said the Obama administration's decision to abstain in the UN Security Council vote on Israeli settlements in December 'was terrible' and said that Britain should have vetoed the resolution instead of voting in favour. He said he was hopeful that Britain would veto an upcoming resolution on Israel that could be presented this week. 'I would hope for a British veto, because I am not sure the US would do so - extraordinarily enough. They won't do it, right? Do you believe the US will place a veto? I have Jewish friends who organised a donor event for Obama. I say to them: 'What on earth are you doing? Okay - what are you doing?'

"He refused to be drawn on whether he would move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. 'I'm not going to comment on that. But we'll see'."

As George Carlin also said: "In America, anyone can become president. That's the problem."

Monday, January 16, 2017

Jews Who Don't

If Zionism dictates that Palestinians must be out, it just as strongly dictates that Jews must be in. And, in the case of the latter, woe betide any Jew who doesn't get with the Zionist program. This "EXCLUSIVE" report comes from today's Australian:

"A Sydney mayor has refused a personal invitation to attend the annual Great Synagogue Law Service, citing Israel's 'illegal" actions in the West Bank, which he says 'will cause endless terrorism across the globe, including here.' Peter Abelson, the Mayor of Mosman on Sydney's lower North Shore, has in return been accused of anti-Semitism by the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies, which said he was not effectively representing Jewish residents in the area. 'Thank you for your invitation to the Great Synagogue Law Service for 2017. I will not be attending,' Dr Abelson wrote to the synagogue's rabbi, Benjamin Elton, earlier this month. 'I should express my deep personal concern about the gross and illegal occupation of the West Bank which creates intense international division and bitterness, and, unresolved, will cause endless terrorism across the globe, including here.'

"Writing in response to Dr Abelson, NSW Jewish Board of Deputies chief executive Vic Alhadeff said: 'We are appalled that you would refuse to represent the Jewish constituents of your ward because of your views on the Israeli-Palestine conflict.' Mr Alhadeff's letter accused the mayor of anti-Semitism, citing the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance's definition, a section of which defines the term as 'holding Jews collectively responsible for actions of the state of Israel.' He also rejected Dr Abelson's characterisation of Israel's actions.

"Dr Elton, who has invited nearby mayors and all NSW federal and state parliamentarians to the event, was shocked by Dr Abelson's response: 'Sometimes people decline with thanks, but to receive a reply with a stark message that attacked Israel's policies... I'm astonished really. 'The policies of the state of Israel is another discussion. To boycott a Jewish event in Sydney because of the actions of Israel, that's a form of anti-Semitism.'

"Dr Abelson, a PhD in economics who has spent time in northern Israel and worked as an adviser to the NSW Treasury, said he attended all the events he could within his council area and described accusations of anti-Semitism as 'nonsense'. 'There are large numbers of people, Jews around the world, who respect Jews and Jewishness, who are critical of the occupation of the West Bank. To say someone who is critical of the [occupation of] the West Bank is anti-Jewish is just nonsense - My father's family was wholly Jewish,' he said. 'I don't think my views are that important. I'm mayor, I run Mosman... for the people of Mosman. There is no discrimination against Jewish or any other race in Mosman'." (Rabbi pans mayor's anti-Israel boycott, Sam Buckingham-Jones)

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Politicians Who Fly Under the MSM Radar

Not all frequent-flying Australian politicians get the media scrutiny they deserve:

"A few weeks ago, I was pleased to receive updates from Michael Borowick and Adam Slonim, the co-convenors of the Australia-Israel Labor Dialogue (AILD), which had just completed two successful missions to Israel - a trade union mission and its first-ever Innovation Mission, led by senator Kim Carr,* a prominent figure in the left-wing faction of the Labor Party. All who care about the Australia-Israel relationship must care that members and representatives of the ALP understand Israel and its unique history and precarious situation better, which makes tours run by AILD, the Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council, the Australia-Israel Chamber of Commerce and others so important." (Stop tarring Israel's critics as Israel's enemies, Dean Sherr, The Australian Jewish News, 13/1/17)

[First rambammed in 2010.]

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Israel Up to its Neck in Syria

But you'll never read about it in the Australian press:

1) "Forces of the Syrian army in the southeastern governorate of al-Suweida seized Israeli-made weapons that were designated for ISIS, Syrian media reported on Wednesday. According to the reports, Syrian Army forces, in cooperation with local residents on the western outskirts of al-Suweida, confiscated... a vehicle that was coming from the Daraa eastern suburbs, on its way to ISIS forces in the eastern Syrian desert. The vehicle was carrying Israeli-made mines with Hebrew writing on them, as well as mortars, RPG rockets and hand grenades. It was not immediately clear how the Israeli weapons got into the hands of those arming ISIS..." (Syrian army reportedly seizes Israeli-made weapons on their way to ISIS, Maayan Groisman, Jerusalem Post, 28/4/16)

2) "Members of the Syrian opposition will make a rare public appearance in Israel next week at the invitation of the Truman Institute at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem... The Truman Institute declined to provide the names of those who will appear... Opposition figure Issam Zeitoun visited Israel 7 months ago to participate in the Herzliya Conference... In an interview... Zeitoun defended himself against criticism of his visit, saying 'I work with a group of academics and experts in strategic research centers, Americans and Jews, whom I found to be friends to the Syrian people... Next week's event can be expected to be used by the Assad regime to discredit the opposition, which has been depicted in official Syrian media discourse... as being instruments of Israel and US machinations to dismember Syria." (Syrian opposition figures to make rare public appearance in Israel, Ben Lynfield, Jerusalem Post, 9/1/16)

3) "Syrian army command said on Friday that Israeli artillery fired rockets at a major military airbase outside Damascus, and warned Israel of repercussions for what it called a 'flagrant' attack... In November, the Syrian army said Israeli jets fired two missiles on an area west of the capital, close to the Damascus-Beirut highway, in an attack mounted from Lebanese airspace." (Syrian army says Israel fires rockets at airbase near Damascus, Suleiman al-Khalidi, Reuters, 13/1/17)

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Israeli Subversion of UK Student Politics

It's not only Britain's political parties that Israeli intelligence operative Shai Masot has been subverting. It's also student politics:

"A senior official from the UK's National Union of Students has been covertly filmed conspiring to oust the organisation's president Malia Bouattia as part of a sting involving the Israeli embassy. An undercover Al Jazeera reporter - known only as Robin - posed as a political activist with links to the now disgraced Israeli diplomat Shai Masot to investigate the influence the Israeli embassy exerts on British politics.

"'Robin' is heard discussing how to oust Bouattia from her position as NUS president with NUS Vice President Richard Brooks, after Masot introduces him as the Chairman of Labour Friends of Israel. In the secret recording, Brooks is filmed telling Robin that he accepted a trip to Israel funded by the Union of Jewish Students. He is also heard to say that he was a key figure involved in attempts to remove Bouattia. 'So how can we get in touch with the people who are trying to oppose her?' asked Robin. Brooks admitted to organising the faction against Bouattia, telling Robin to 'drop me a line whenever you want to have a conversation' if he wished to speak to any figures opposed to Bouattia...

"Bouattia, the first Muslim woman of colour to lead the NUS, has been criticised by opponents for alleged anti-Semitism, claims that she denies. Known for her years of pro-Palestine activism on campuses across the UK, Bouattia says she considers herself an opponent of 'Zionist politics'." (REVEALED: NUS official colluded with Israeli embassy to oust student leader, Areeb Ullah,, 9/1/17)

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Funding the Campaign to 'Take Down' Jeremy Corbyn

George Galloway's analysis (on his FB page) of the just unmasked machinations of Israeli embassy operative Shai Masot is worth a listen in its entirety. Here, for example, is what he has to say about how they intersect with the recent Zionist smear campaign to 'take down' UK Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn:

"Jeremy Corbyn and I have marched together for more than 30 years in support of the Palestinian people. Since the day and hour that Corbyn was elected, indeed when it became clear he was likely to be elected, the Israel lobby has gone absolutely bananas. They persecuted Jeremy Corbyn every step of the way to the leadership, and as soon as he had won it they began trying to have him overthrown. They confected an entirely false anti-Semitism scare inside the Labour Party, painting their own party as a nest of racists when, of course, the truth was that there was nothing to such allegations whatsoever. The only thing that most Labour Party members have in common with Jeremy Corbyn on this is their support for justice for the Palestinian people, and their opposition to the crimes of the state of Israel.

"Well, there was a Labour MP at the lunch. Her name is Joan Ryan. She's the MP for Enfield, though you wouldn't know it. In fact, she's more properly described as the MP for Tel Aviv. She's the chair of the so-called Labour Friends of Israel, and she was there for a very important purpose. And the same Israeli official [Shai Masot], in charge of political relations with the British political parties, gave her some very good news, and in the... Al Jazeera footage you can see the breadth of the smile on her face. As well it might, because the official told her that he had secured more than 1 million pounds as a slush fund for Labour MPs to come to the aid of the state of Israel.

"It's being dressed up as more than 1 million pounds to fly members of the Labour Party to Israel for 'fact-finding missions'. but that's entirely bogus. First of all, most of them have already been on not one, but several fact-finding missions to Israel. Second, you can fly to Israel for well under a thousand pounds. And let's say half of the Labour MPs have taken the shekel - that doesn't even cost you a hundred thousand pounds. What was the other 900,000 pounds for? I'll tell you, it was for a slush fund to destabilise Jeremy Corbyn, to try and overthrow him as the leader of the Labour Party. It was for a political slush fund operated by a Labour MP on behalf of a foreign power - not just any foreign power, but one which is the biggest international lawbreaker on earth, one which has just been unanimously condemned by the entire UN Security Council for its criminal activities against the Palestinian people.

"What kind of Labour MP is not only in bed with a state like that, but is receiving covertly (because you would never have heard of the existence of this slush fund) more than 1 million pounds? Taking this money from a foreign embassy official to lobby for that foreign country when that foreign country stands in public opprobrium amongst almost all Labour Party members, most people in Britain, and most countries in the world?" (Treason & Plot: The Israeli Scandal)

There appears to be a news blackout on this scandal in Australia (Fairfax, Murdoch, ABC). Two comments on the thread which follows Galloway's analysis indicate that this is also the case in Denmark and Germany. I imagine the US ms media is following suit.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Israel Astroturfs the UK

More revelations concerning Israel's hidden hand in UK politics:

"An Israeli embassy official who plotted to 'take down' MPs regarded as hostile has also set up a number of political organisations in the UK that operated as though entirely independent. Shai Masot was filmed covertly as he boasted about establishing several groups, at least one of which was intended to influence Labour Party policy, while appearing to obscure their links to Israel. The disclosure comes as Labour demanded the government launch an immediate inquiry into 'improper interference in our democratic politics.' A former Tory government minister also called for an inquiry into the Israeli embassy's links with two organisations, Conservative Friends of Israel (CFI) and Labour Friends of Israel (LFI).

"Meanwhile, Masot is being sent back to Israel in disgrace, and a civil servant and Conservative official [Strizzolo] who was also filmed discussing ways to discredit MPs has resigned from her post....

"In the latest recordings, Masot boasts of establishing organisations 'in Israel and here [in the UK].' When asked what he means, the Israeli official replies: 'Nothing I can share, but yeah,' adding: 'Yeah, because there are things that, you know, happen, but it's good to leave those organisations independent. But we help them, actually.'... The footage taken by al-Jazeera shows Masot wanted Robin [the al-Jazeera filmer Masot and Strizzolo believed to be an LFI activist] to head up a new organisation, Young Labour Friends of Israel. At a meeting last July, Masot explains that he had the idea for a group called Young Conservative Friends of Israel in 2015, and wanted to set up a Young Labour Friends of Israel at that time. 'When I tried to do the same in Labour they had a crisis back then with Corbyn. So instead of that I took a delegation to Israel... I took a Fabians group to Israel,' he says.

"Masot also says in the footage of that meeting that he does not wish to see Jeremy Corbyn win the leadership contest with Owen Smith. During another meeting, he describes Corbyn as 'a crazy leader.' 'I would rather that the party will not stay with Corbyn,' he says. Referring to a number of Labour MPs who had recently visited the West Bank, he adds: 'Some of them are against Corbyn, so who knows?' Masot advised Robin that he should launch the Young Labour Friends of Israel by first organising a reception, and then setting up an email list. LFI needs to be rejuvenated by a new youth group, he adds. 'Not a lot of young people want to be affiliated. For years, every MP that joined the parliament joined the LFI. They're not doing it any more in the Labour Party. CFI, they're doing it automatically. All the 14 new MPs who got elected in the last elections did it automatically... " (Israeli diplomat who plotted against MPs also set up political groups, Ewan MacAskil/ John Cobain,, 9/1/17)

Meanwhile, back in Australia, you'll be interested to know that "a group of Labor politicians has formed a new action group to counter what they perceive to be growing anti-Israel sentiment within the party that they claim is being pushed by high-profile colleagues such as former foreign minister Bob Carr. The Labor Israel Action Committee, headed by NSW state members Walt Secord and Ron Hoenig, will work to 'restore balance in the Labor Party on Israel and the Middle East.' It's understood the group, which has 62 members, was formed in response to frustration at the influence of Mr Carr and NSW MP Shaoquett Moselmane... Federal Labor members Mike Kelly and senator Deb O'Neill are the new group's co-patrons, while former NSW MP Eric Roozendaal, former NSW MP Mary Easson and former senator Michael Forshaw were some of the first official members." (Labor politicians join to fight 'anti-Israel focus', Sam Buckingham-Jones, The Australian, 12/12/16)

Monday, January 9, 2017

Exposed: Israeli Infiltration of UK Tory & Labour Parties

An absolute must-read:

Israel plot to 'take down' Tory minister: Astonishing undercover video captures diplomat conspiring with rival MP's aide to smear Deputy Foreign Secretary, Simon Walters,, 8/1/17

"The Israeli Embassy made a shocking vow to 'take down' Boris Johnson's Foreign Office deputy, a secret film reveals today. The bombshell footage, covertly filmed in a London restaurant and obtained by The Mail on Sunday, shows a senior diplomat making the astonishing threat to target Sir Alan Duncan. Extraordinarily, he is egged on by a senior aide to another Conservative Minister, Robert Halfon. The video comes in a film claiming to expose the way that the Israeli government has 'infiltrated' both the Conservative and Labour parties via its embassy in the UK, using secret cash and covert support.

"Further footage shows the Israeli diplomat, intelligence expert Shai Masot, telling senior Labour MP Joan Ryan that he has obtained 'more than 1 million pounds' to pay for sympathetic Labour MPs to visit Israel. Mr Masot also mocks 'crazy' Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and his 'weirdo' supporters. Footage also shows pro-Israel Labour activists discussing the Jerusalem government's secret role in backing their activities. The revelations follow Tory infighting over the Party's policy on the Israel-Palestine dispute, and repeated claims of anti-Semitism among Labour's Left-wing 'Corbynistas'. Senior Tory MPs have condemned the apparent threat to 'take down' Sir Alan - who has been critical of Israel and who is described in the secret footage as causing 'problems' - and called for a Downing Street inquiry...

"The disclosures are in a film made by the investigative unit of the Qatari-based Al Jazeera TV company, which claims to show how the Israeli Government has 'infiltrated' the Conservative and Labour parties... An undercover reporter and hidden cameras tracked Masot across Britain as he held secret talks with figures from the Conservative Friends of Israel (CFI) and its Labour counterpart (LFI). His apparent threat to 'take down' Sir Alan was made a month later at the Aubaine restaurant, directly opposite the Israeli Embassy in Kensington, West London, where Masot is based. Also present was Maria Strizzolo, senior aide to Education Minister Robert Halfon, former political director of CFI.

"After Ms Strizzolo boasts about her role in making Halfon a successful minister, Mr Masot asks her conspiratorially: 'That's obvious, but can you do the opposite stuff as well? Can I give you some names of MPs that I would suggest you take down?' When Ms Strizzolo replies that all MPs 'have something they're trying to hide,' Mr Masot says: 'I have some MPs' and tells the undercover reporter: 'She knows which MPs I want to take down... the deputy Foreign Minister [Duncan].' He says Sir Alan - a well-known critic of Israel, and Boris Johnson's second-in-command - is 'doing lots of problems.' He appears to suggest that Sir Alan is more powerful because Johnson 'is an idiot with no responsibilities. If something real happened... it will be Duncan.' Strizzolo says Sir Alan is 'impossible to rebuff' and has powerful 'friends' and claims that in a bitter clash over israel with her boss, Sir alan 'threatened to destroy' Mr Halfon. 'Rob told the Whips and they told him [Halfon] to calm down,' she says. Strizzolo then suggests: 'A little scandal maybe?' adding: 'Don't tell anyone about this meeting.'

"Ambitious Mr Masot's CV has the hallmarks of a spy: he spent eight years in the Israeli Navy's 'Special Unit', has a degree in International Affairs, worked in Israeli Defence intelligence, has the rank of major and recently applied to run Israeli Foreign Affairs intelligence. He says he is 'not a career diplomat' and came to the UK 'to take care of specific political issues - that's what I do.'...

"Both Mr Halfon and Ms Strizzolo are prominent supporters of Conservative Friends of Israel. Shortly after Mr Halfon was made Education Minister by Theresa May last year, Ms Strizzolo, his former Commons chief of staff, became a civil servant at the Education Department and continues to work part-time for him at the Commons. In the film, she boasts of how she and the CFI ensure Tory MPs offer vocal support for Israel, for example by preparing public statements for them. 'If you do everything for them it's harder for them to say, 'I don't have the time... I won't do it,' she said. She says she phoned Mr Halfon from Israel and 'convinced' him to ask a question to David Cameron in support of Israel in Prime Minister's Questions in the Commons in 2014. When Mr Masot asks: 'Did he do it?' Ms Strizzolo replies: 'Yeah, and [obtained] a Government statement.'

"The film also shows how Mr Masot had intensive contact with pro-Israel Labour figures and discussed extra funding for LFI at the Party's conference in Liverpool in September. He tells the group's chairman, Ms Ryan, of plans for 'another delegation of LFI activists' to visit Israel. Ms Ryan responds: 'That'd be good. What happened with the names we put in to the embassy, Shai?' Masot: 'We've got the money, more than 1 million pounds, it's a lot of money.' Ryan: 'It must be.' Masot: 'I have got it from Israel. It is an approval.' Ryan: 'I didn't think you had it in your bag!'

As George Galloway tweeted yesterday: "The PM has clear evidence that a foreign government in league with their agents in parliament are a conspiracy against her government and the UK."

Of course, it couldn't possibly happen here... could it?

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Elor Azaria: Gun Zionism in Action

Despite the efforts of Zionist propagandists to con the gullible into believing that Israel is all about inclusion, pluralism, democracy, sweetness and light, the fact of the matter is that almost from its inception the Zionist movement set out, in the words of one of its founding fathers, Chaim Weizmann, to establish in Palestine a state that was "as Jewish as England was English."

The problem was that, at the time (1919), Palestine was 90% Arab. For the Zionists to achieve their goal of a 'Jewish' state, therefore, the Arab inhabitants would have to go. As the rate of Jewish immigration into Palestine was insufficient to outstrip the natural increase of the Arab population, the only option for the Zionists was to reach for the gun and drive the Arab majority out, a solution duly implemented in 1948. What British historian David Hirst refers to as 'gun Zionism' was therefore integral to the success of the Zionist project. And, as long as Palestinian Arabs are still to be found in Palestine, desperately clinging on to this or that remnant of their historic homeland, gun Zionists will have work to do.

Which is why the current case of Israeli soldier/death squad thug Elor Azaria is nothing new. As Israeli activist and author, Neve Gordon explains:

"It is no coincidence that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu - who was then followed by a slew of ministers and Knesset members - has called for a presidential pardon for Israeli soldier Elor Azaria. Azaria was found guilty of manslaughter after he shot and killed Yusri al-Sharif as he lay wounded on the ground. This striking mobilisation to exonerate Azaria, which cuts across party lines and includes MKs from Labor, should actually come as no surprise, since the desired pardon is not really about absolving one lone murderer, but rather an effort to vindicate Israel's 50-year occupation. Consciously or unconsciously, each and every government official calling for such absolution understands that Azaria is in no way an aberration of Israel's colonial project, but rather a clear symptom of its very structure.

"The bystanders are testimony to the structure's effect. The video released by the Israeli human rights organisation B'Tselem first depicts al-Sharif lying on the ground, wounded, as scores of soldiers and settlers stand near his body chatting, talking on the phone and taking pictures. Several medics are at the scene, but they, too, are oblivious to the injured Palestinian. Indeed, one of these medics is the killer. Following the execution, not one of the bystanders appears surprised; no one grabs Azaria and pushes him away from the scene, no one runs to al-Sharif to see if he can be resuscitated; rather, the bystanders simply continue to chat. The laid-back everydayness of those standing just metres away from an execution can certainly be understood as a manifestation of what Hannah Arendt has called 'the banality of evil'. Yet, it also profoundly captures something crucial about the structure of Israel's colonial project.

"Azaria is a soldier in the Kfir Brigade. This brigade, as John Brown recently exposed [], has been responsible for killing many Palestinians, among them Mustafa Tamimi who was shot in the head with a long-range tear gas canister during a weekly demonstration in his village, Nabi Salah. The soldier who killed Tamimi in 2011 was sitting in a military jeep 5 metres from Tamimi when he aimed and fired his gun. Two months ago, four other soldiers from the same brigade were indicted for electrocuting a Palestinian; evidence emerged that they had taken pictures of him as he begged for his life. Two other soldiers were charged with beating Palestinian children, sticking an electric heat blower in the face of one of them. John Brown cites yet another confession made by a soldier from the same brigade: 'We would go on a patrol, and if we even saw a child looking at us in a not nice way - he would receive a slap on the spot. On one of these patrols, some threw stones at us. We caught one of the children who we knew saw the stone-thrower. We beat him so bad until he was willing to identify the thrower. We then took [the 14-year-old stone thrower] from his bed outside. We pointed to some holes in the ground while we stuck the barrels of our rifles in his mouth and said to him: 'Do you want to die here? Just choose a place where you want to be buried'.'

"Azaria, in other words, is not a rotten apple. Rather, his actions must be understood as part and parcel of the larger structure that constitutes and shapes Israel's colonial project. Azaria was merely unlucky because he was caught executing a Palestinian on video. Indeed, large parts of the Israeli public realise this and therefore do not perceive Azaria as an outlier, which helps explain the widespread report he has garnered. Thus, it would be a grave mistake to conclude, as the Israeli press has done, that the politicians are simply pandering to the mob. Netanyahu recognises that Azaria is a cog in the machine, as does Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman, and it is for this reason that they are calling upon the president to pardon him. They also know that if Azaria is handed down a 20-year sentence, the structure that produces the likes of Azaria and the everyday taken-for-granted violence needed to sustain Israel's colonial endeavour could well be challenged from within.

"However, it is also crucial not to lose sight of what they are consciously supporting. For Azaria and those who were standing by him on the Hebron streets, as well as for all of his fans - citizens and politicians alike - Palestinians like Yusri al-Sharif are never victims or fully human beings; they are prey. Thus, they can not only be legitimately hunted, but killing them is never a crime, and more often than not, it is not even considered a misdemeanor." (Azaria exposed the reality of Israel's colonial project,, 5/1/17)

I would go even further. Not only is killing Palestinians not a crime in Israel; it is what Zionism, properly, gun Zionism, is all about. For gun Zionists, Azaria is a patriot.

First the US, Now the UN

Not content with turning the US Congress into a cheer squad for its criminality...

"On Thursday, the Republican-controlled US House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved a bipartisan resolution rebuking the United Nations for criticizing Israeli settlements and declaring unwavering support for Israel. The non-binding resolution insists that the United States reject any future UN actions that are similarly 'one-sided and anti-Israel." (Israel to cut $6m from UN dues in protest over settlements resolution, AP at the UN, The Guardian, 7/1/17)

... Israel now has its sights on the United Nations:

"Israel's UN mission said it would move forward on additional initiatives 'aimed at encouraging structural change within the UN with the ultimate goal of ending anti-Israel activities' after Donald Trump becomes US president on 20 January." (ibid)

Saturday, January 7, 2017

C'mon Guys, Do It for Israel

Some interesting quotes from UNCLASSIFIED US Department of State Case No. F-2014-20439 Doc. No. C05794498 Date: 11/30/2015:

"The best way to help Israel deal with Iran's growing nuclear capability is to help the people of Syria overthrow the regime of Bashar Assad."

"What Israeli military leaders really worry about - but cannot talk about - is losing their nuclear monopoly... If Iran were to reach the threshold of a nuclear weapons state, Tehran would find it much easier to call on its allies in Syria and Hezbollah to strike Israel, knowing that its nuclear weapons would serve as a deterrent to Israel responding against Iran itself."

"With Assad gone, and Iran no longer able to threaten Israel through its proxies, it is possible that the United States and Israel can agree on red lines for when Iran's program has crossed an unacceptable threshold. In short, the White House can ease the tension that has developed with Israel over Iran by doing the right thing in Syria."

"Success in Syria would be a transformative event for the Middle East. Not only would another ruthless dictator succumb to mass opposition on the streets, but the region would be changed for the better as Iran would no longer have a foothold in the Middle East from which to threaten and undermine stability in the region."

"Arming the Syrian rebels and using western air power to ground Syrian helicopters and airplanes is a low-cost high payoff approach. As long as Washington's political leaders stay firm that no US ground troops will be deployed... the costs to the United States will be limited... Iran would be strategically isolated, unable to exert its influence in the Middle East. The resulting regime in Syria will see the United States as a friend, not an enemy. Washington would gain substantial recognition as a friend, not an enemy. The resulting regime in Syria will see the United States as a friend, not an enemy. Washington would gain substantial recognition as fighting for the people in the Arab world, not the corrupt regimes. For Israel, the rationale for a bolt from the blue attack on Iran's nuclear facilities would be eased. And a new Syrian regime might well be open to early action on the frozen peace talks with Israel. Hezbollah in Lebanon would be cut off from its Iranian sponsor since Syria would no longer be a transit point for Iranian training, assistance and missiles. All these strategic benefits and the prospect of saving thousands of civilians from murder at the hands of the Assad regime... With the veil of fear lifted from the Syrian people, they seem determined to fight for their freedom. America can and should help them - and by doing so help Israel and help reduce the risk of a wider war."

Thursday, January 5, 2017

One Nation Declares War on New Zealand

Just look at the RWNJs (Right Wing Netanyahu Jobs) standing by their man:

Trump: "Stay strong Israel, January 20th is fast approaching!"
Bishop: "The Coalition government has consistently not supported one-sided resolutions targeting Israel."
Turnbull: "A two-state solution is not assisted by one-sided resolutions made at... the United Nations."
UK PM Theresa May: "The settlements are far from being the only problem in this conflict. In particular, the people of Israel deserve to live free from the threat of terrorism, with which they have had to cope for too long."

Now this, FFS:

"One Nation has picked a fight with one of Australia's closest allies, calling for tighter immigration controls for those across the ditch, after New Zealand co-sponsored a United Nation's resolution censuring Israel. Queensland senator Malcolm Roberts said he was 'appalled' by the Security Council resolution, which called for an end to any and all settlement activities in disputed [sic] zones, including East Jerusalem, which he said 'have contained Jewish settlements since biblical times'." ('Appalled' One Nation senator Malcolm Roberts seeks punitive stance against Kiwi 'settlements' in Australia, Amy Remeikis, Sydney Morning Herald, 4/1/17)

No comment on the matter, of course, is complete without a touch of the Light Horse Brigade:

"2017 marks the centenary of the ANZAC's brave actions to free the Palestinian territory - now Israel - from Ottoman oppression of Christians, Jews and other groups. It would never have been possible for those brave ANZACs, charging as part of the Light Horse Brigade, to have ever thought that events 100 years later would go full circle and future generations would betray the very people they were about to liberate."

Of course, Malcolm's grasp of history is as shaky as his grasp of climate science.

The only betrayal worth mentioning in this context is the betrayal by Britain of its Arab allies, the Arab nationalist forces of the Sharif of Mecca, who had been promised independence in most of the Arab Near East (including Palestine) by Britain's High Commissioner in Egypt, Sir Henry McMahon, in 1915, only to have had that promise broken twice. First, when the British concluded a colonial carve-up of the region with France (the Sykes-Picot Agreement of 1916), and second when the British promised the European Zionist movement a "national home for the Jewish people" in Palestine (the Balfour Declaration of 1917).

So, instead of a united Arab kingdom, the Arab Levant was torn in two, with the French imposing themselves in Lebanon/Syria, and the British in Iraq/Transjordan and Palestine.

While the other component parts of this cosy Anglo-French arrangement eventually became independent states, Palestine was unfortunately singled out for special treatment by the Britz. The majority Arab population of Palestine was deliberately denied representative government and independence by Britain so that the Zionist colons it had introduced, in ever larger numbers, could proliferate to the point where they were able to drive the Arabs out, block their return, and establish an ethnocratic, sectarian, Jewish supremacist state on their lands.

If that be 'liberation'...

"Israel is a Jewish state, and it's the only Middle Eastern democracy where Christians, Muslims, atheists and Jews can all be elected to the same parliament. Israel is Jewish and democratic, unlike most Islamic countries."

Just a minute. Only when all of those Palestinian Muslims and Christians currently under Israeli military occupation or in exile can vote in the said parliament, will we have democracy between the River and the Sea.

"At the very least, we should look at further cutting benefits for New Zealanders living in Australia.  Perhaps a tougher immigration policy aimed towards NZ would stop Kiwis from establishing settlements in Australia."


Tuesday, January 3, 2017

One Hit Wonders

In 1977, a spectre was haunting Straya - the spectre of PALESTINIAN TERRORISM. In those dark days only one and a half men understood the gravity of the threat of PALESTINIAN TERRORISM to Straya's way of life. And they knew just what to do - cut off its funding:

"When Tony Abbott and I were involved in the Australian Union of Students, this was a very extreme organisation. It sent money compulsorily collected from students to support the Palestine Liberation Organisation which was then engaged in acts of murderous terrorism... In 1977, Abbott and I drove down from Sydney to Melbourne to attend an AUS conference at Monash University... No doubt the silliest thing we did at the conference was to attend a Palestinian film night. Because AUS was spending our money, we wanted to assert... our right to be there. So we heckled the film a bit. Although we were outnumbered... the film was stopped and we were told we had to leave, We were making the point that we shouldn't have to leave because the evening was being funded by our compulsorily collected student union dues. One woman from the far Left came up behind Abbott, took off her wooden clog and whacked him over the back of the head..." (See my 13/9/12 post Greg & Tony Do Monash 1)

And 40 years later, nothing has changed!

Not only is the spectre of PALESTINIAN TERRORISM still haunting Straya, but  only Tony Abbott (and greg sheridan) still understand the gravity of the threat of PALESTINIAN TERRORISM to Straya's way of life. And they still know just what to do - cut off its funding:

"Former prime minister Tony Abbott has called for Australia to cut its $40 million-a-year aid budget to the Palestinian Authority while 'it keeps paying pensions to terrorists and their families'." (Abbott urges cut in $40m aid to Palestinians, Greg Sheridan, The Australian, 2/1/16)

Monday, January 2, 2017

John Kerry's Israeli-Occupied Mind

In my last post, I listed US Secretary of State John Kerry's terms of endearment for the genocidal colonial-settler state of Israel (Remarks on Middle East Peace, 28/12/16). I turn now to what he had to say about the brutalised indigenous, occupied/exiled inhabitants of Palestine.

There's barely a word, phrase, sentiment, misrepresentation or outright lie in it that hasn't been borrowed from some Zionist propaganda tract or talking point.

In a very long speech, there are only two points where Kerry actually touches on the devastating impact of Israel's military occupation on the Palestinian people - but in neither does he come anywhere close to doing it justice:

"I have also often visited West Bank communities, where I met Palestinians struggling for basic freedom and dignity amidst the occupation, passed by military checkpoints that can make even the most routine daily trips to work or school an ordeal, and heard from business leaders who could not get the permits that they needed to get their products to the market and families who have struggled to secure permission just to travel for needed medical care."

"I've also seen the devastation of war in the Gaza Strip, where Palestinian girls in Izbet Abed Rabo played in the rubble of a bombed-out building."

The idea that desperate acts of resistance are an inevitable consequence of a grinding, never-ending military occupation/colonisation process is nowhere to be found. Instead, we get this:

"There is absolutely no justification for terrorism, and there never will be. The most recent wave of Palestinian violence has included hundreds of terrorist attacks in the past year, including stabbings, shootings, vehicular attacks and bombings, many by individuals who have been radicalized by social media. Yet the murderers of innocents are still glorified on Fatah websites, including showing attackers next to Palestinian leaders following attacks. And despite statements by President Abbas and his party's leaders making clear their opposition to violence, too often they send a different message by failing to condemn specific terrorist attacks and naming public squares, streets and schools after terrorists. President Obama and I have made it clear to the Palestinian leadership countless times, publicly and privately, that all incitement to violence must stop. We have consequently condemned violence and terrorism, and even condemned the Palestinian leadership for not condemning it."

Incredibly, even seeking redress in international fora is verboten:

"Far too often, the Palestinians have pursued efforts to delegitimize Israel in international fora. We have strongly opposed these initiatives..."

Apparently, occupied/colonised Palestinians are supposed to just sit on their hands as the Israelis, with the connivance of the Americans, pull the rug out from under them. And God forbid that any Palestinians should want all of their homeland back:

"Most troubling of all, Hamas continues to pursue an extreme agenda: they refuse to accept Israel's very right to exist. They have a one-state vision of their own: all of the land of Palestine."

Then, FFS, we have the naked Israeli virgin encircled by swarthy, hirsute bikies, drooling at the prospect of violating her sweet innocence as they close in:

"And we all understand that Israel faces very serious threats in a very tough neighborhood. Israelis are rightfully concerned about making sure that there is not a new terrorist haven right next door to them."

Here it is, 2016/2017, and Kerry's still trotting out the Leon Uris version of 1948:

"The United States recognized Israel seven minutes after its creation. But the Palestinians and the Arab world did not, and from its birth, Israel had to fight for its life. Palestinians also suffered terribly in the 1948 war, including many who had lived for generations in a land that had long been their home too."

The Palestinian presence in Palestine goes back to the Canaanites but for Kerry it has long been their home too!

As for 1967, he peddles the same, tired myth we've been hearing now for almost 50 years:

"Next year will also mark 50 years since the end of the Six-Day War, when Israel fought for its survival."

Finally, here's Kerry's 'solution' to the Palestinian refugee problem:

"Provide for a just, agreed, fair, and realistic solution to the Palestinian refugee issue, with international assistance, that includes compensation, options and assistance in finding permanent homes, acknowledgment of suffering, and other measures necessary for a comprehensive resolution consistent with two states for two peoples."

This of course has nothing whatever to do with justice, fairness or realism. It is nothing more than a transparent attempt to skirt the requirements of UNGA resolution 194 (1948): "... refugees willing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so..."

Kerry's speech is nothing but the delusional product of an Israeli-occupied mind.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

John Kerry & the Perils of Permissive Parenting

Outgoing US Secretary of State John Kerry described his 28 December speech, Remarks on Middle East Peace, as "candid thoughts."

Frankly, his speech reads more like the exasperated plea of a permissive parent whose son has gone off the rails. For the rest of the planet (with the exception of Australia), of course, the brat is more Frankenstein monster than juvenile delinquent.

Kerry's speech betrays not a hint of self-awareness. There is no acceptance of responsibility for Obama's role in the creation of this monster; no acknowledgment that just about every previous US president since Truman, by indulging Israel's every wish and whim, and turning the proverbial blind eye again and again, has contributed to its creation. There is no trace whatever of a mea culpa, only further evidence of a sick and dysfunctional relationship that merely serves to discredit the US as a serious nation in the eyes of the world:

- "President Obama has been deeply committed to Israel and its security, and that commitment has guided his pursuit of peace in the Middle East."

- "Friends need to tell each other the hard truths, and friendships require mutual respect."

- "This friend has done more to support Israel than any other country, this friend has blocked countless efforts to delegitimise Israel..."

- "This Administration has been Israel's greatest friend and supporter, with an absolutely unwavering commitment to advancing Israel's security and protecting its legitimacy."

- "Time and again we have demonstrated that we have Israel's back."

- "More than one half of a our entire global Military Financing goes to Israel."

- "This fall, we concluded an historic $38 billion memorandum of understanding that exceeds any military assistance package the United States has provided to any country, at any time..."

- "This commitment to Israel's security is actually very personal for me. On my first trip to Israel as a young senator in 1986, I was captivated by a special country, one that I immediately admired and soon grew to love."

- "We were the only administration since 1967 that had not allowed any resolution to pass that Israel opposed."

- "We strongly reject the notion that somehow the United States was the driving force behind this resolution."

- "A hundred and twenty years ago, the First Zionist Congress was convened in Basel by a group of Jewish visionaries..."

Seriously now, where is the spine, the brain and the dignity in such statements? By enabling Israeli genocide and apartheid in Palestine, from Truman on, the United States has not only betrayed the long-suffering Palestinians, but created one hell of a rod for its own back.

As US international law professor Francis A. Boyle put it in 2003:

"All who support Palestinian self-determination must abandon the fiction and the fraud that the United States is an 'honest broker' in the Middle East, let alone elsewhere. The United States government has never been an 'honest broker' since from well before the very outset of the Middle East peace negotiations in 1991. Rather, it has invariably sided with Israel against the Palestinians as well as against the other Arab States. As I can attest from personal experience, the Palestinian negotiators have always been subjected to continual bullying, threats, harassment, intimidation, bribery, lies, and outright deceptions perpetrated by the United States working in conjunction with Israel. It cannot be emphasized too strongly: just as President Clinton ordered Indonesia out of East Timor, President Bush Jr. can order Israel out of Palestine tomorrow. Anything less than that is just a diplomatic dog-and-pony show maliciously orchestrated by the United States government on behalf of Israel - unless the US seriously wishes to concede that its hands are tied in foreign policy in the Middle East by the illegal and aggressive interests of another state. We must settle for nothing less than that US presidential order to Israel." (Palestine, Palestinians & International Law, p 158)