Friday, December 31, 2010
Have a happy new year.
Thursday, December 30, 2010
The issue of Jewish settlements in the West Bank is a problematic one that must be solved by agreement between Israel and Palestine when the two sides are ready and able to make peace.
The "settlers" themselves have been the victims of one of the great racial slurs of our time. To be sure, there are some settlers among the several hundreds of thousands who are troublesome but we are talking of a small minority and certainly much smaller in percentage terms than the extremists on the Palestinian side whose villainous behaviour is regularly ignored or excused by some segments of the media.
Which brings me to the story of the West Bank's burning sheep which demonstrates the sheer bastardry of the media and others when it comes to dealing with Jews and Arabs in this part of the world - Leftists Caught Red-Handed: `Burning Sheep' Libel Was Faked.
A Jordan Valley Arab farmer has admitted that he concocted a story about Israeli settlers deliberately burning his sheep to disguise his own blunder of losing control of a brush fire.
Various groups agitating against the settlers immediately spread the story about the Arab shepherd who "saw settlers light a fire in the field where his herd was grazing, burning to death 12 pregnant ewes, and then drive away."
Of course there was no fact checking by those who were eager to spread yet another unconfirmed story of condemnation. It was yet another rush to judgement like the Al Dura case, the Jenin "massacre" and the flotilla fraud story.
The problem here was the story had no credibility. The supposed sheep burning occurred on the Sabbath, when observant Jews are forbidden to drive.
Despite the doubts, the B'Tselem and Yesh Din human rights group alleged that this so-called attack was another one of hundreds of supposed acts of vandalism by Jews against Arabs and the Palestinian Authority called on the international community to pressure Israel to stop "settler violence."
As has been the case with the flotilla fraud, there has been no apology or words of regret about the libels against the settlers, nor are we likely to see any sign of the lies abating.
More likely is the possibility that some sleazy journalist will repeat the lies and that some media group will not only swallow those lies but also award him or her a prize for great journalistic prowess.
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
If the peace process is to go anywhere, the lessons that Israel has learnt in the past two years also must be taken on board by the international community. If they are simply ignored, then Israelis will never feel confident enough to finally withdraw from the West Bank and an atmosphere of trust will be impossible to establish.
Under such conditions, the situation in the Middle East will continue to fester and prospects of peace will remain extremely dim.
Sharon alludes to the role of the media in partly helping create this mood and there can be no better example than the appalling material coming from such media groups as Fairfax here in this country.
Yesterday's effort from Jason Koutsoukis Little Hope for Middle East Accord in 2011 demonstrates yet again how analysis becomes tainted when important facts are ignored.
The two sides "sat down for face-to-face talks on September 2. The talks were polite, perfunctory and ultimately a waste of time." However, Koutsoukis omits to mention that there were no face to face talks for over nine months while Israel enforced a freeze on building within its settlements. He knows that there is no Israeli policy of settlement expansion but rather, that any growth is taking place within the existing settlements.
It seems customary among Fairfax writers to forget that Hamas is committed to destroying Israel but Koutsoukis continues to mention that no peace deal is "possible" while Hamas is left out of negotiations.
Give us all a break, please.
We know that Israeli PM Netanyahu is committed to two states but does either of the Palestinian leaderships really "want the two-state solution after all"?
Rhetorical question Jason.
Then there's the Mavi Marmara which we all know wasn't a humanitarian mission in the first place (unless the only thing we read about the conflict is the Age). We know the flotilla carried useless supplies that even Hamas didn't want. Out of date medicine anyone?
How anyone could be so naieve or delusional as to think that the IHH provocateurs (nine of who died after the IDF had to come on board to save its soldiers under attack) were "citizens"?
Oh that's right.
"Israel said" the lives of its soldiers were threatened. Nevermind that the visual evidence proved what they said was the truth and that others (including the journalist apologists who quoted them) were not.
Naturally, Fairfax readers wouldn't know because most of the facts are only found in the blank pages.
Why on earth would the Egyptians want to seize Gaza-bound anti-aircraft missiles in the Sinai?
Egyptian security forces in the Sinai Peninsula recently seized a large store of weapons and explosives that were to be smuggled into the Gaza Strip, Palestinian news agency Ma'an reported Tuesday.And why on earth would anyone covering this part of the world suppress such information from its readers?
The cache of weapons included dozens of anti-aircraft artillery shells and several anti-aircraft missiles, according to the report. The weapons and ammunition were discovered in a hole inside an isolated desert storage facility.
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
Monday, December 27, 2010
No surprises there and no angle with which to paint the Little Satan as evil so it's been left alone by the media crowd in this country along with the revelations that the Stuxnet worm has set the Iranians back two years in their endeavours to become nuclear.
The fact that the perpetrators left no dead cutthroats behind for the media to turn into innocent choir boy martyrs means that story goes into the blank pages as well.
Sunday, December 26, 2010
More than forty, mostly innocent people, lost their lives yesterday in a senseless suicide bombing.
Four times as many as the number who died on the Mavi Marmara - none of them innocent.
How many column inches will be invested by the media on this story on the day after tomorrow and after that?
Very few, I'll bet.
UPDATE: The latest figures from the burqa bombing show the death toll has increased to above 80. The number of deaths by Muslim on Muslim violence this year is in the thousands and would fill hundreds of Mavi Marmaras. Have a Good Weekend.
Indeed, it was said by a group of activist academics in the United States who mistakenly warning against Israel's possible "ethnic cleansing" of Palestinians in the "fog of war" during Operation Cast Lead that "the expulsion of people according to race, religion or nationality would constitute crimes against humanity and will not be tolerated."
But this is precisely what Abbas continues to maintain he will do - transfer the settlers out of his Palestinian State signalling his intention to commit a crime against humanity.
Of course, the President of the other part of Palestine wants to destroy Israel and kill the Jews there. Again, if you supported his regime and his policies were directed against any other group, you would be described a racist. In our perverted universe, they'll probably award you something instead.
As for the President of the larger part of Palestine (the one that's only part racist), it's time for him to resign again.
Thanks again to the elderofziyon for this cartoon of the man who threatens to resign all of the time, who should resign but won't do it:
Saturday, December 25, 2010
Friday, December 24, 2010
The important awards around the world always seem to acquire a special name like the "Oscar" for the Academy Award. We have the Emmys and the Logies and a litany of other very worthy awards for hardworking artisans who ply their trade around the world.
But it takes something really special to achieve that which Fairfax scribbler Paul McGeough has achieved in the past fortnight - two awards for the price of one. Nominated for a Walkley by Fairfax which also sponsors the very same awards, McGeough won his for an execrable one sided and mostly discredited piece on May's phony fascist Free Gaza flotilla. Closely on the heels of this achievement comes the news that the same individual has snaffled a Dishonest Reporting award for the same shtick drek.
This is truly an outstanding achievement deserving of a special title similar to a "Fisk" so that people will forever associate the winning of dual awards of this nature with all that is pathetic in the world of journalism.
The association of McGeough's efforts with the fascism of Hamas, the IHH and their progenitor the Moslem Brotherhood whose Palestinian leader once sat at the heels of Hitler and plotted the final solution with Eichman and McGeough's own style of writing makes the choice of title a simple one - congratulations on becoming the inaugural McGoebbels winner in 2010.
Read what Dishonest Reporting has to say about this year's McGeobbels winner and about the others consigned to infamy here. J-Wire also has a commentary on the man here.
Thursday, December 23, 2010
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
The Dullard of the Year's latest work - Don’t blame Wikileaks for our incompetance
He's right for once.
I blame his English teacher.
Israel repudiates bigoted rabbis
Your story "Students targeted after rabbi's anti-Arab edict" (December 18-19) omits some critical details. The petition of a group of rabbis in Israel to forbid renting homes to non-Jews was immediately condemned by political and religious leaders, including Israel's Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu.
The Tzohar organisation, representing 600 religious Zionist rabbis in Israel, rejected the petition as contrary to Jewish religious law and affirmed the right of Israel's non-Jewish minority residents to live with equal rights under the protection of the law. Israel remains the only country in the Middle East in which public statements of bigotry are met with immediate repudiation from senior mainstream political and religious leaders.
What surprises me is that bigoted journalists like Koutsoukis think they can get away with suppressing information that should give their stories proper context.
Tuesday, December 21, 2010
He concludes by asking the same question that many of us are puzzled about and that is why an award for rubbish when there must be some decent journalists working around the country.
Last year was an astounding one for news media. Think of Kevin Rudd’s fall from grace, the federal election, the economic meltdowns in Greece and Ireland, the WikiLeaks saga, and what a flop the final episode of “Lost” was. Surely there were news articles about issues of more importance – news articles with objective, not objectionable, content – news articles with fewer mistakes! The Walkleys are supposed to award fact, not fiction.
There are a slew of products here, and beautiful restaurants. Is this the Gaza we have been hearing about?"
A Sudanese official, who arrived in the Strip about a month ago with hundreds of visitors from Arab countries on the "Viva Palestina" aid convoy, was quoted by Palestinian news agency Maan as saying.
"Where is the siege? I don't see it in Gaza. I wish Sudan's residents could live under the conditions of the Gazan siege," he reportedly added.
If someone covers this story from YNet News then there might be an element of truth in the story behind the next Walkley Award.
Monday, December 20, 2010
Even the arch prizewinning idiot at Fairfax made a clumsy but failed attempt to paint it as something sinister over a leak which did nothing other than prove an Israeli diplomat's prediction back in the earlier 1990s about Iran's nuclear aims 100% correct. Naturally, the beady eyed idiot and his mates continue to ignore numerous inconvenient WikiLeak revelations.
As it has turned out so far, WikiLeaks have in the main, endorsed Israeli positions on a raft of issues and have not only proven its critics wrong but, in many cases, exposed them as liars.
The Arab states are the ones who have been baying for Iran's blood more than the Israelis. Iran has been exposed as a weapons supplier carring arms in Red Crescent ambulances and not to be trusted. Turkey's PM is corrupt, has eight Swiss Bank accounts and is not to be trusted (except by those fools on the flotilla in which he embedded IHH cutthroats). Sudan's President has $9b stashed away in UK banks.
So the usual suspects have had no choice but to fall back on Plan B - blame the Jews.
Across the internet, they are twittering and bleating about a Zionist conspiracy. The Jews have bought Julian Assange (even though Assange receives the support of many of the celebs of the hate Israel crowd and he has a loopy anti-Semitic liar named Israel Shamir working on his WikiLeak cables back in Russia).
Here's the story - Jews Control Julian Assange: WikiLeaks And Mossad Deal Protects Israel: Report Theorists
What else can I say but enjoy.
Sunday, December 19, 2010
Respected US jurist Alan Dershowitz in Finally, A Hamas Leader Admits That Israel Killed Mostly Combatants In Gaza discloses how Hamas lied about the casualties of Operation Cast Lead and how the United Nations, the Goldstone Report, various "human rights" organisations and many in the media automatically favoured the distorted numbers offered by Palestinians and rejected Israel's documented figures.
"Since the end of the Gaza War in January 2009, Israel has stood accused of targeting civilians, rather than terrorist combatants. The Israeli Defense Force has claimed that during Operation Cast Lead it targeted only combatants in its efforts to protect its civilians from rocket attacks. It has also claimed that most of the dead were combatants and issued lists of names of many of the combatants killed and identified them as members of the specific Hamas military units. Despite unprecedented efforts to avoid civilian casualties—including hundreds of thousands of leaflets, telephone calls and non-lethal, noise-making warning bombs—some civilians were killed, because Hamas deliberately hid behind civilians, using them as shields, when they fired rockets at Israeli civilians."
Now the truth is out but there will be no retractions and the lies will no doubt continue.
The declaration received swift condemnation from most sectors of Israeli society from Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu down. The Israeli PM asked "how would we feel if someone overseas said that it is forbidden to sell apartments to Jews? Such things should not be said, not by Jews and not by Arabs. Such things should not be said in a democratic country, especially not in a Jewish and democratic one".
Throughout the country and across different parts of the political spectrum, religious and community leaders and the media were equally strong in repudiating the repulsive sentiments expressed in the declaration. Jewish communities across the world, including our own here in Australia, rightly condemned them in the strongest terms.
Yesterday, the Melbourne Age published a piece by Jason Koutsoukis about events in the city of Safed - ARAB STUDENTS GET HARSH LESSON IN RACISM FROM HOLY CITY where a mob of 60 ultra-orthodox Jews intimidated an Israeli Arab chanting ''kill the Arabs'' outside his apartment. Koutsoukis described the atmosphere in the northern Israeli city in the aftermath of the rabbis' declaration. He concluded with a quote from Israeli MP Ahmed Tibi who claimed that ''Fascism has raised its head in Israeli society''.
Taken in isolation the piece by Koutsoukis might be regarded as a worthwhile way to expose of the evils of the disgusting declaration of the rabbis which deserves our condemnation in the strongest terms.
Unfortunately, by telling less than half (correction, a quarter) of the this unsavoury tale, Koutsoukis must face allegations of racism similar to those he exposed in his article.
Koutsoukis quoted one Member of Israel's Knesset (and an Arab member who is customarily hostile to his country's Jewish majority) but failed to mention the overwhelming condemnation throughout Israel of the rabbi's statements, including that of the nation's Prime Minister.
By concealing this, Koutsoukis changed the context of a story about racism by a group of extremist rabbis and their redneck followers who simply do not reflect the views of the people into a comment on all of Israeli society.
The piece encompasses what has become systemic and rotten within the Fairfax organisation: yet another piece seeking to delegitimise the Jewish State, this time with Tibi's equally outrageous claim of fascism which would make no sense at all if Koutsoukis has given some space to revealing the nation's response to the declaration.
Since Koutsoukis arrived in Israel two and a half years ago, he could have written similar articles about anti-Semitic calls by the Palestinian Muslim clergy and about Palestinian attacks on Jews on every single day of his term as Middle East correspondent for Fairfax.
The Palestine Media Watch and Memri websites document hundreds of racist attacks from Palestinian pulpits, the majority of which occur with the blessing of the Palestine Authority in the West Bank and/or Hamas in Gaza.
Here are but two recent examples of news stories that were consigned to the blank pages -
Hamas: Allah, kill Christians and Jews "to the last one"
PA TV broadcasts song calling for Jihad against Israel: "Draw your sword, let it not return"
About these, The Age remains silent.
On Friday the Jerusalem Post described how Palestinians had desecrated and ancient Jewish holy tomb by daubing vile hateful and racist graffiti on its walls but, as is the custome with Fairfax journalism, this story was ignored by Koutsoukis.
Yet, he rarely ever misses an opportunity to highlight bad behaviour from Jewish extremists.
I do not condone the events of Safed or the racist pronouncements of the rabbis. They are offensive and have rightly been condemned in Israel from the top down. However, by selectively highlighting what happens in Israel and then suppressing more common and often more vile instances of racism from the Palestinian side, Koutsoukis and his newspaper show their bias and their true colours.
They are no better than any nasty mob that seeks to intimidate innocent minorities with their stones and with their racist slurs.
Saturday, December 18, 2010
SUBJECT: (S) REORIENTATION OF POLICY PRIORITIES: ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN CONFLICT
1. (S/NF) SUMMARY: This cable sets out amended assessments, priorities for relevant interactions on Israeli-Palestinian Issues (paragraph 2-end) by Department personnel and other Country Team members.
A. (S/NF) USG focus on obtaining freeze in Israeli settlements in the West Bank for additional 90 days has been discontinued. Recognized that previous 10-month freeze was wasted by Palestinian Authority, which failed to enter direct talks in good faith. PM Netanyahu considered USG request for additional 90-day freeze, though concerned about domestic political fallout. Contacts with PA and Department assessment indicated that new freeze would achieve little: Israel reluctant to discuss border issues in isolation from other Final Status Issues including security, refugees, Jerusalem; Palestinians seeking Israeli border concessions, unwilling to engage on other issues.
PM Netanyahu has encouraged “economic peace” in West Bank, fueling economic growth there by easing freedom of movement, access, etc, bolstered by Quartet envoy Blair. Reluctant to give ground in substantive negotiations on Final Status Issues, because of domestic political constraints and own traditional ideology, but acutely conscious of importance of ties to USG, therefore susceptible to cautious risk-taking in context of improved faith in USG.
Palestinian government - stability and orientation
PA President Abbas heading unreformed Fatah movement, nearing end of political career, reluctant to take personal risk. Unwilling or unable to concertedly encourage policy of reconciliation with Israel, evidenced by ongoing incitement and delegitimation (see November PAendorsed study discounting Jewish connection to Western Wall); occasional comments, when abroad, in recognition of Jewish rights in region met with heavy criticism within Fatah and beyond.
President Abbas formally committed to demand for right of return, although hints at opportunities for compromise. Inconsistent on possibility of West Bank land swaps to resolve settlement bloc issue. Unhelpfully encouraged by numerous international players to believe he can establish Palestinian state without confronting Final Status Issues. PM Fayyad, presiding over admirable progress toward institution-building in Palestinian West Bank territories with summer 2011 statehood timetable, lacks public backing to promote compromise, debilitated by difficult relationship with Abbas.
USG ultimately asking Israelis to relinquish territory to which they claim peerless attachment, from which they were attacked for first two decades of statehood; to enemy/partner that fostered recent terrorist onslaught that killed hundreds of their people, and some of whose institutions vow unceasing enmity against them; against track record of international failure to prevent violent, Iranian-backed Islamists (Hezbollah, HAMAS) filling vacuum left by previous US-backed Israeli withdrawals (Lebanon, Gaza); (b), USG can serve all interests by stringent oversight of process of Palestinian state-building, to promote reconciliation, minimize military, demographic threats to Israel.
Time is not on the side of the Israelis, moderate Palestinians, relatively moderate regimes in region, or the American interest. State-championed (Iran) Islamic extremism feels itself ascendant, sees America hesitant, in retreat. Previous lukewarm allies such as Saudi Arabia concluding that Iran will prevail in nuclear face-off with USG, looking to safeguard own interests via altered alliances, domestic nuclear initiatives, etc. Warmer allies such as Jordan, concerned for fundamental interests, recalibrating relations with Iran.
When Paul McGeough received a Walkley for his infamous flotilla propoganda piece, the value of the prize plummeted to the worth of less than one big fat bagel.
Honest Reporting has recognised Fairfax Flotilla groupie Paul McGeough with a front page Op Ed entitled - Australians Reward Shoddy Journalism .
Biased and one-sided reporting of the Gaza flotilla earns one journalist a prestigious award despite the holes in his winning entry.
As demonization and delegitimization of Israel moves further into mainstream media and Western society, writing something negative about Israel, irrespective of its quality or credibility, can be enough to gather accolades.
In the latest example, Sydney Morning Herald correspondent Paul McGeough received the Walkley Award, Australia's version of a Pulitzer Prize, for his coverage of the Israeli raid on the Mavi Marmara.
I have some objections to the article, particularly with its title.
I'm an Australian and the award of a prize for journalism of this sort was not done in my name.
I accept no part in it and, indeed, I am like many of my fellow Australians repulsed that such Goebellian garbage as that which McGeough produced on the phony flotilla should even be considered as having sufficient merit to be nominated for such a journalistic award.
Honest Reporting states that the Walkleys are prestigious.
Not any more.
I understand that many of these awards are self nominating and that Fairfax is on the board of the Walkley Foundation so we can all understand the precise value of McGeough's Walkley is less than one big fat bagel.
Friday, December 17, 2010
Out of tune singing? Check
Out of synch singing? Check
Something passing for dancing? Check
Expressing support for Iran? Check
Butch woman impersonating a robot? Check
Old codger in a trenchcoat banging a rod against his hand? Check
Multiple arrests? Check
Drunk camerman? Quite possibly
All in all, another group of pricks in a hall
Writing in the Guardian, Barry Sautman and Yan Hairong get their knickers in a knot over some of the views of Nobel Peace prize winner Liu Xiaobo (pictured above), the dissident languishing in a Chinese jail - Do supporters of Nobel winner Liu Xiaobo really know what he stands for?
"Liu has also one-sidedly praised Israel's stance in the Middle East conflict. He places the blame for the Israel/Palestine conflict on Palestinians, who he regards as 'often the provocateur'."
Oh well, off with his head then!
Thursday, December 16, 2010
This Jerusalem Post article ‘Nazism, Islam shared common enemies - the Jews' covers a newly released report by the US National Archives which details the close collaborative relationship between Nazi leaders and the grand mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin al-Husseini, indicating that Nazi authorities planned to use Husseini as their leader after their conquest of Palestine.
The report notes that the evidence "is significant in light of Husseini’s lenient postwar treatment." Moslem Brotherhood leader Husseini was allowed to flee to Syria after the war despite enough evidence to bring him to trial as a war criminal.
The Moslem Brotherhood is the direct ancestor of a number of Islamic Jihadist groups including Hamas which rules over Gaza and which receives the support of various media groupies, the BDS movement and other organisations promoting Palestinian rejectionism of Israel as a Jewish State.
The article in the Jerusalem Post has not been cited by anybody in Australia. Guess there's no Walkely Award available for exposing fascists these days.
More to come on this subject ...
Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Steve Lewis of the Melbourne Herald Sun covered this story - Israel gives rare honour to Australian Aboriginal activist yesterday but where was Jason Koutsoukis of the Fairfax media organisation?
Covering a pro Fatah or Hamas rally, perhaps?
Grasping the real issue on Israel
There is a great scene in Wall Street, when Gordon Gekko advises his protege to focus on the real issue. "The rest," he says, "is just conversation".
The editorial "Back to Mid-East drawing board" (December 13) depicts Israel's settlements as "the roadblock" to peace. The real issue is the Palestinian leadership's consistent refusal to accept Israel's presence; the rest is just conversation.
Settlements, refugees, borders, Jerusalem can all be discussed once the real roadblock has been removed. The Palestinian people deserve a state - and leaders who will negotiate in good faith.
Vic Alhadeff Chief executive, NSW Jewish Board of Deputies, Darlinghurst
One can only hope that the people at Fairfax grasp the point he is making because there's been a hell of a lot of irrelevant conversation in their newspapers about the conflict.
The Peace Team comprising of 13 young Israelis and 13 young Palestinians competed among 16 national teams at the AFL's last world championships held in Melbourne in 2008. The concept was a raging success and drew compliments wherever they travelled during the tournament.
The objective of the Peace Team jointly sponsored by the Peres Center for Peace & Al Quds Association for Democracy is to promote dialogue between the two peoples and to ultimately bring about peace in the region and a film about the team's tour of Australia recently won an international award for best documentary.
However, not everybody supported the Peace Team back then. The paradox is that pro-Palestinian groups claiming to be in the "peace camp" opposed it vehemently. The team was fiercely opposed by Australians for Palestine and by others who are now in the BDS movement, the phony Free Gaza movement and the ISM.
No surprise there because these people, particularly their slimy "movers and shakers" and the media pack that supports them have no interest in bringing about a reconciliation between the people and achieving a peaceful two State solution. They are in fact "the war camp".
I understand that during the championships of 2008 threats were made to the courageous young Palestinians by such groups even before they entered the country.
During one of the games a war camper turned up at a Prace Team game with an Istael Apartheid banner.
Now imagine that!
There's a mixed team of Israelis and Palestinians out there playing a game of footy together and some cretinous supporter of the terrorists has the gall to waive a placard alleging apartheid. That's how stupid the war campers are.
This fellow fully deserved the wrath of a burly British footballer who told him to "p___ off". And being the gutless wonder that he was, that's exactly what he did.
The majority of people on both sides of the conflict want peace and it is a pity that there are extremists that want to make mischief, especially in a country like Australia.
In the meantime, please read this Op-Ed piece from Ynet about the supposed blockade in Gaza entitled "Blockading the Truth", which highlights just how much aide is going into Gaza and exposes claims of a siege as complete falsehoods.
Monday, December 13, 2010
Sydney Morning Herald correpsondent Paul McGeough was aboard Challenger One, some 150 meters away from the Mavi Marmara when the Israeli navy intercepted the Gaza flotilla.
Now, his account of the incident has earned him a prestigious Walkley Award, the Australian equivalent of a Pulitzer Prize. The honor disturbs me for three reasons.
Two of the reasons deal with points of contention McGeough was in a unique position to clarify for history's first draft -- but he instead muddied the waters. The third reason has more to do with the language of his dispatch.
1. McGeough failed to shed light on the flotilla's radical Islamic organizers.
Most prominent among the convoy's organizers was the IHH, a radical Islamic relief fund based in Turkey. As Malam points out, the IHH is linked to Hamas,and "supported jihadist terrorist networks in Bosnia, Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan and Chechnya." It is also has ties to Turkey's ruling party.
What did McGeough say about the organizers? Not much:
The flotilla drew on funds from NGOs in Turkey, Malaysia, Ireland, Algeria, Kuwait, Greece and Sweden.
With the paper's considerable resources, McGeough and his editors could have and should have been aware of the IHH's background before the correspondent even made his travel plans. If indeed they knew, it was irresponsible to not disclose this.
2. The flotilla was not a "humanitarian convoy."
The convoy's humanitarian veneer masked a political agenda to provoke an embarrassing confrontation with Israel. Some of the people aboard the ships were specifically recruited to attack Israeli soldiers. Among the items found aboard were bullet-proof vests, night vision equipment and rifle scopes, saws, knives, gas masks and slingshots.
McGeough missed it.
If the critique ended here, you could reasonably conclude that McGeough was either sloppy,simply had the bad luck of being on the wrong boat while one of 2010's biggest stories unfolded meters away. But then there's my third concern.
3. Inflammatory language suggests sympathy for the flotilla.
This particular snippet rightly outraged the Jewish community, and called into question McGeough's impartiality:
Then, the tightening noose. Sneaking up and around every boat, there were bullet-shaped hulks which soon became impossible to hide as the moonlight made fluorescent tubes of their roiling wakes. First one, then two and maybe four could be seen sneaking in from the rear.
They hunted like hyenas – moving up and ahead on the flanks; pushing in, then peeling away; and finally, lagging before lunging.
Lest we forget, here's the headline, which sets a tone for the rest of the story:
Prayers, Tear Gas, and Terror
If there's terror, it's because there are terrorists. That's McGeough and the SMH's subtle, most damning stab at Israel.
You can't expect journalists to write be-all end-all stories. The descriptive language of his own voice suggests McGeough saw exactly what he wanted to see.
And that's not worthy of the honor conferred by the Walkley Foundation's award.
The three reasons reported by Backspin would surely be enough to demonstrate that nowhere near the necessary research was put into McGeough's effort and one wonders what criteria (if any) were applied in the case of this particular award.
And there's more to this story with questions being asked about McGeough's Good Weekend lift out which appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald and the Melbourne Age and the "corrections" subsequently published in both newspapers which blamed others for a glaring error in the text but more of that later.
I mean the fact that Australia's government believes that Iran is a problem and that while it continues to threaten a friend, Israel, there is every chance that the Israelis might launch a preemptive attack before the Iranians have a nuclear weapon that works.
And when the Australian intelligence community warns that Iran should not be seen "merely" as a rogue state, that does not mean that Iran is no longer a danger to regional and international security.
Nor does it mean that the Age should refrain from telling its readers about the WikiLeak revelations about Iran moving weapons around for Hizbullah in ambulances during the 2006 war or about Turkey's PM and his Swiss bank accounts.
Oh dear ... but that's blank page stuff only, is it?
Saturday, December 11, 2010
In this Associated Press piece Hamas PM: We're ready for referendum on peace deal, we're told that ... "In recent years, Hamas has tried to reach out to the West, and its supreme leader in exile, Khaled Mashaal, has expressed support for a Palestinian state in 1967 borders.
At the same time, Hamas has not revoked its founding charter which calls for Israel's destruction, and Hamas officials won't say whether they see a two-state deal as a final arrangement or a step toward eliminating Israel."
As the esteemed Elder points out this the sort of unmitigated bullshit that Hamas groupies would like the world to believe. From Firas Press
[Hamas leader Mahmoud al-] Zahar stressed in a speech in the beginning of celebrations of the 23rd anniversary of Hamas' inception "that the [Hamas] movement was launched to continue the jihad until the liberation of all Palestine."
Zahar burned an Israeli flag on the occasion of the 23rd anniversary of its launch in southern Gaza City.
He said "The journey of jihad and martyrdom began 23 years ago and will continue until the liquidation of the masses of aggression, treachery and even high banners of faith and bring us day after day, year after year from Palestine .. all of Palestine."
"The Jihad will continue until the liberation of the Palestinian city of Jerusalem to pray a prayer of thanks after the liberation of all Palestine..."
And a correspondent quoting from the HAMAS TV children's show "Tomorrow's Pioneers", Hamas TV, 9/22/09:-
Nassur and Saraa have a disagreement about what the "expulsion" of the "Jews or Zionists" means. Saraa adopts the argument that they should be "chased away" and that "we don't want to do anything to them, just expel them from our land." Nassur, on the other hand, endorses the view that they should be "erased" and that "we want to slaughter them so they will be expelled from our land." Saraa eventually concedes, and the two compromised that "we will expel them from our land using all means, and if they don't want to go peacefully, by words or talking, we'll have to do it by slaughter.""
Nice words to teach your kids and its no wonder that the Walkely Award people must be so proud to endorse idiots who would have us believe that all this talk shouldn't be taken seriously.
Friday, December 10, 2010
Today, that was demonstrated in a letter published in the Melbourne Age and written by Michael Medawar, North Melbourne in which the lie that mere criticism makes you antisemitic was repeated:-
"IF YOU criticise the US you're labelled a terrorist; if you criticise Israel, you are labelled anti-Jewish/Semitic. If you criticise China, Islam or Christianity, it's called freedom of speech."
Mr. Medawar, you are as much of an idiot as the Age editor who allowed this tripe to be published.
The best news story was won by The Sydney Morning Herald's Paul McGeough for his coverage of the Gaza aid flotilla, also run prominently in The Age.
The story described what happened from a jaundiced perspective that has subsequently been completely debunked and discredited.
The twitterers on WikiLeaks have come up with a saying that sums up the emerging challenges which that phenomenon bring to society and to the journalists and commentators who are supposed to be recording the events of our times:
"In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act."
The Walkelys of 2010 demonstrate clearly to us that there are no revolutionaries in Australian journalism today.
Quite the opposite and, as a result, the journalist profession in this country is now in tatters.
Thursday, December 09, 2010
Tuesday, December 07, 2010
Monday, December 06, 2010
Sunday, December 05, 2010
I just learned great news: German law professor Christian Tomuschat, the anti-Israel and anti-American official heading the U.N. committee to enforce the Goldstone Report, has resigned. The biased U.N. probe now has no leader, and is in disarray.
This unprecedented resignation follows a global campaign by UN Watch that exposed Professor Tomuschat's egregious bias and breach of his obligation under international law to be objective and impartial:
• UN Watch's team of researchers tracked down and translated Professor Tomuschat's German academic writings.
We published a 30-page report revealing how he had frequently compared Israeli actions with the "barbarism" and "inferno" of World War II; how he performed legal work for PLO leader Yasser Arafat; and how he repeatedly accused Israel of “state terrorism.” This was reported worldwide.
• When Tomuschat delivered his report to the U.N. Human Rights Council in September - calling for the investigation of Israeli opposition leader Tzipi Livni for alleged war crimes in Gaza - UN Watch was the only group to take the floor and directly challenge Tomuschat for his bias, stirring reactions from Tomuschat as well as the council president himself.
• When Tomuschat then appeared at a U.N. press conference, journalists followed up on UN Watch's campaign and challenged Tomuschat to defend himself.
Finally, thousands of UN Watch supporters worldwide have been taking action on our website every day to demand from the U.N. that Tomuschat resign. In the end, he gave in.
It's one more UN Watch victory for the genuine principles of human rights, international law, and Middle East peace and security.
If you would like to ensure our ability to achieve more such victories in the future, please, Margot, consider sending a secure online donation now so we can continue speaking truth to power. Any donation, $25, $100, or $1,000, will make a true difference.
Thank you so much for your support.
Hillel C. Neuer
The latest batch of WikiLeak confidential US embassy cables tell of the discovery of extraterrestrial life forms on earth according to this morning's Sunday Sun newspaper.
The dispatches sent out by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton earlier this year reveal that the space visitors, who first arrived on the planet in the late 1940s, are friendly and "willing to share their technology and culture for the good of mankind."
The Sunday Age refused to report on the leaked UFO cables. A Fairfax spokesperson would neither confirm or deny that his organisation's reluctance to reveal these startling revelations has anything to do with the fact that the aliens travel around in tanks and communicate only in the Hebrew language.
Saturday, December 04, 2010
Friday, December 03, 2010
Mearsheimer and Walt's flawed thesis about the Israel Lobby must now surely be in tatters following the revelations that so many Arab States have lobbied hard for United States action against Iran.
Yet, after being implored by Arab leaders to cut of the head of the snake, the Americans could not be persuaded to attack the dictatorship whose Revolutionary Guards last year butchered and raped their own people in their own streets to avail themselves of absolute power.
Naturally, one didn't get this feeling about Iran when one read what one thinks was supposed to be passing for analysis on the WikiLeaks from Fairfax Middle East guru Paul McGeogh.
Nor would one expect this from a man who produced six pages of twaddle (aka free publicity) for the Free Gaza movement without mentioning Hamas and its genocidal policies. For Age readers, Hamas is the boy scout movement that helps little old ladies cross the busy streets of Gaza on their way to modern air conditioned well stocked supermarkets that we don't need to know about. The same Hamas that today rivals Mahatma Ghandi for loving peace and its Jewish neighbours.
Any person who can consign the thuggish Hamas junta in Gaza to the blank pages would have been expected to be champing at the bit in waiting for the WikiLeak revelations to damn the Little Satan Israel and therefore must have been most disappointed to discover nothing of the kind in the Assange revelations.
McGough's WikiLeak analysis still predictably scoffs at Israel and the Arab states concerned about Iran's nuclear buildup and its arming of local terror groups but, true to blank page tradition, it misses the leaks about Iran moving weapons to Hizbullah in Red Crescent ambulances during the Second Lebanon War in 2006, not to mention Turkey's questionable dealings with terror groups. Heaven forbid that the host of the flotilla that carried jihadists, useless medicine and a bunch of warm and fuzzy Pinocchios through the Mediterranean last May is a shonk with secret Swiss bank accounts and who sleeps with and accommodates would be mass murderers.
No, just as Basil doesn't mention the Germans, we don't mention much about Iran. What we do instead is we mock Israel because one of its diplomats expressed concern privately as early as 1993 about the possibility of Iran developing a nuclear weapons programme. But instead of laughing that off as McGeough does, we should be congratulating him for his prescience in predicting the future. Actually, it wasn't that hard really because, after all, those who had their eyes open when Iran and Irak fought out their little war in the 80's know that the leadership of both sides were nasty bastards.
And nasty bastards like Iran, Irak, Syria, Turkey, Hizbullah, Hamas and the IHH must be consigned to the blank pages of the Age.
Thursday, December 02, 2010
Thanks to MERE RHETORIC for "WikiLeaks – I Will Make A Lot Of Peace In The Middle East"
It makes a lot more sense that what passed for analysis in my local broadsheet and is a lot funnier.
Wednesday, December 01, 2010
Please send beady eyed McGeough out to investigate this Mr. Fairfax because he surely couldn't make more of a mess with that than he has done with his so-called analysis of Wikileaks.