Friday, February 29, 2008


Writing in The New Republic, Eric Reeves discusses here how recent events in West Darfur should "compel us to start calling things by their correct names again."

Earlier this month, Janjaweed militias, in coordination with the Sudanese military attacked rebel strongholds in West Darfur targeting ethnically African Masseleit and Erenga civilians and towns. Using militarily imprecise barrel bombs they have caused deaths and massive displacement of civilians. Khartoum has suspended all humanitarian flights to the region; cutting off 160,000 people from food, medical, and water assistance.

"Ominously, a large number of children aged 12 through 18 are missing, disproportionately boys. Both the Janjaweed and Khartoum's regular troops have a long history of executing young males from non-Arab ethnic groups."

"What we're seeing in Darfur now is a level of ethnically targeted violence that hasn't been approached since the terrifying days of 2004."

Yet nobody uses the "G" word any more. "Genocide" is off the table and the United Nations Human Rights people are nowhere in sight. They're too preoccupied with their phony posturing against another country further east that's defending itself from those who want to destroy it utterly.

Reeves sees one of the problems in bringing this situation to the world's attention as being one of the way people are looking at the situation: -

"Human destruction and displacement are no longer 'genocidal,' but rather a function of rebel fractiousness, opportunistic banditry, and a generalized 'insecurity'."

These days the whitewashing of the activities of Arab terrorist organisations bent on murder and destruction and the governments that support them is not news to us. That the Darfurians can’t buy publicity to cover their plight while the rest of the world turns its collective head away from these shocking atrocities is a sad sign of our times. This silence is shame!

Thursday, February 28, 2008


Ed O'Loughlin was given oxygen by the Australian Jewish News to explain his reporting on Israel last week and produced a pathetic piece of self-serving garbage on par with that which he routinely serves up in the Fairfax media. To his credit, he didn't deny the legion of claims of bias against the Jewish State or his turning of a blind eye to many of the crimes being committed by Palestinian terrorists not only against Israelis but also against their fellow Palestinians.

Today he has produced a piece about the killing of 21 Palestinian civilians in November 2006. The headline screams that the Israeli army won't probe Gaza deaths and Ed seems to boiling with anger about the incident. And just to embellish the message about those nasty Israelis, he throws in mention of another incident in June 2006 in which seven members of a picnicking family were killed by an explosion on a north Gaza beach. Not a single mention however, of the fact that there is a growing body of evidence that the Palestinian propaganda industry has milked this story for all its worth while it's now accepted that the family was probably killed by their own terrorist land mines.

That the story is just another beat up can best be summed by referring to O'Loughlin's own words:

"This week the Israel Defence Forces' (IDF) adjutant-general announced that an extremely rare computer malfunction had caused the shells to strike 500 metres from their intended target, a field that had been used by militants to fire missiles at Israel. There was therefore no reason to charge any soldier with negligence or any other offence, Brigadier-General Avihai Mandelblit decided. The announcement did not consider the gunners' supposed failure to notice their shells going astray."

So the IDF really did probe the incident and found the cause to be a computer malfunction but that's not enough for O'Loughlin who knows very little about fighting wars if he thinks that the gunners could have rectified the error having noticed their shells going astray: it would have been far too late. His comment is sheer stupidity.

Further, O'Loughlin will be noticed a little more if he ever applied the same standards he expects from the Israelis (including the ability to be clairvoyant about the munitions they fire when seeking to prevent "militants" from firing missiles at its civilians) to the Palestinians (see TRAGIC DEATHS: WILL THEY EVER LEARN? and NINETEEN GAZANS DIED:NOBODY CARED).

In an age and an area where Arab militias are causing great damage to civilian populations it's time for the Age to wake up to itself. One only has to look at the terrible and underreported crimes taking place in nearby Sudan to understand how disproportionate and unjust Ed's attacks are on Israel and its people.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008


Back in November I wrote [in PALESTINIANS GET HIGH: JEWS GET BLAMED] about a news story aired on ABC radio's flagship programme AM in which claims were made that Israeli authorities were turning a blind eye to the trafficking of drugs and that this was part of a deliberate plan to destroy the fabric of Palestinian life. According to the report by ABC Middle East correspondent David Hardaker, Israelis were allowing Palestinians to become addicted so that Jews could oppress them and steal their homes. I made the point at the time that the report provided no balance or scope for the Israeli authorities to counter the claims and that it exhibited a paucity of research on the part of ABC staff that put together this blood libel against Israel and the Jews.

In it's own sort of way, the ABC now agrees having considered the complaint made by a medical professional about blatant errors in the Hardaker report. It has amended the report PALESTINIANS STRUGGLE WITH SURGE IN DRUG USE and added the following:-

Editor's Note: Parts of this story have been amended or omitted and the audio removed to address issues of factual correctness. The story was also found to have lacked balance because there was insufficient opportunity for Israeli authorities to respond. The ABC apologises for these instances of inaccuracy and lack of balance.

The ABC is playing cute by admitting the lack of balance in the story but it does very little about what it recognises as a clear problem with the report. The making of a cut here and there and adding a single word simply cannot repair the inestimable damage done when it aired this piece of scurrilous Israel bashing propaganda more than three months ago.

It took that length of time for the ABC to investigate the matter but rather than transparently provide listeners with a separate report on what moved it to amend, omit and remove parts of a story "to address issues of factual correctness" they are given a mere postscript at the end of the offending story, itself carefully massaged but still repeating the same odious message and still failing to provide an Israeli response.

Remember, the correspondent in question produced this piece on "The art of Middle Eastern conspiracy theories" and started off by stating that "the reporter's job is to get the facts."

In this case, the reporter clearly did not get the facts and despite three months of investigation by the ABC the matter has not been dealt with at all adequately and it must be taken further.

The ABC's own amendments have highlighted the scandalous way in which the presentation of news from the Middle East can be manipulated by those who have an agenda of maligning on particular side in the conflict. In this case, the report took up the cause of a Palestinian drug worker who was more concerned with beating Israel and the Jews across the head than with the welfare of the growing number of Palestinian drug addicts on his watch.

The following shows parts of the original report and how it was amended. Deletions are shown in blue and additions are shown in red.


Middle East correspondent David Hardaker reports.
DAVID HARDAKER: Not so long ago illicit drugs were virtually unheard of in Palestinian life. Now they’re freely available.
HOSNI SHAHIN: We are working very hard, day by night.
DAVID HARDAKER: It’s Hosni Shahin’s job to try to stop it but it’s only getting worse.
HOSNI SHAHIN: We are seeing that the numbers are increasing and this makes us crazy.
DAVID HARDAKER: Hosni Shahin is in charge of the Palestinian effort to stop the spread of drugs.
[, but the figures are defying him.]
[A just-completed study shows up to 60,000 Palestinians in the West Bank use drugs, with 11,000 being addicts.]
In the east side of Jerusalem, where Palestinians live, the problem is even more acute. Hosni Shahin counts 20,000 drug users. Hashish is the most common drug. Then heroin.
HOSNI SHAHIN: Some of them try to sell their houses to the Jews in [their own] the old city.
DAVID HARDAKER: To get money for drugs?
HOSNI SHAHIN: To get money for drugs. If he is ready to destroy himself, you think that he is caring to destroy his family, or his brother, or his son?
DAVID HARDAKER: Researchers have found the reasons for increased drug addiction are poverty, unemployment and despair about the future. They’ve linked that to Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territory, but they’ve also faulted the Palestinian Authority for not taking the problem seriously.
A former addict, Imad Shweiki, now works with the Palestinian anti-drug office.
(Imad Shweiki speaking)
“It’s easy for Palestinians to get drugs, especially in Jerusalem”, he says. “Here the borders are open. I have contacts with the Israelis”.
[The research backs up what Imad Schweiki says. Young Palestinians are getting their drugs in areas where they’re in contact with Israelis, either in Jerusalem itself or around the giant wall, known as the separation barrier, between Israel and the West Bank.]
Hosni Shahin.
HOSNI SHAHIN: There is no caring from the Palestinian side for this, and there is no caring from the Israel side for this. So you can say this place is, around the wall, it is a free market for commerce of drugs.
DAVID HARDAKER: The drug dealers are nearly always Arab-Israelis, sometimes working with Palestinians.
The Palestinian drug workers allege that while Israeli border security is generally ferocious, when it comes to drugs it is uncharacteristically lax.
Head of the research, Doctor Luay Shabaneh.
LUAY SHABANEH: There is something has to be worked out with the Israeli side, at the checkpoints and at the border points, to minimise the transfer of the drugs.
DAVID HARDAKER: From what you know, are the Israelis deliberately allowing drugs to come into the Palestinian area, or are they simply being neglectful?
LUAY SHABANEH: Well I can’t claim that they’re doing this on purpose. Maybe they are lazy, maybe are careless. I could say maybe they are careless, because they don’t feel that they are affected very much.
DAVID HARDAKER: So, in other words, that it might not matter to them. Is that what you’re saying?
LUAY SHABANEH: Yes. Yes, because I mean, we are the recipients. The drugs are coming from their side, therefore we are mostly affected not them.
DAVID HARDAKER: Israeli authorities have flatly denied using drugs as a tool of occupation. Drug workers on the ground can’t prove it, but they’re convinced that the inaction of Israeli police is deliberate and that it’s aimed at pacifying angry young Palestinians.
Hosni Shahin.
HOSNI SHAHIN: For all occupations, all over the world, the most dangerous thing for them - the youth people. So the occupation, if he can keeps the youth calming down all the time, the occupation will be, avoid a lot of problems, they will avoid it.

So while the ABC recognises that the report was unbalanced and factually incorrect, the amendments do little to correct what is a despicable attack on Israel and the Jewish people. Together with the footnote they are supposed to represent some form of correction and apology but very few listeners to the original AM programme will ever become aware of this travesty. Moreover, the amended version only makes Hardaker and the ABC look even more stupid, almost O'Loughlinesque.

The addition of the word "Arab" after Israeli is tantamount to a clear admission on the part of the ABC that the entire report was at the very least fundamentally flawed and at most something far more sinister. If the drug pushers were Israeli Arabs then the claim that this was all a plot by evil Zionists is a complete nonsense and proof that the entire production was a blood libel against the Jews. Remember, Hardaker knows about the art of Middle Eastern conspiracy theories and yet here he was becoming complicit in the broadcasting of one that is awash with all of the components of classical anti-Semitism.

To compound the situation, the ABC won't even admit that this piece was anti-Semitic both in its original and its current forms. The procedure governing complaints about this sort of reporting from the ABC is as flawed as the story. The ABC sits in judgement on itself and duly absolves itself of spreading hatred and lies - shameful!

POSTSCRIPTS: Aussie Dave at Israellycool has more on this story Drug Libel IV: The Admission of Wrongdoing. Rumour has it that Hardaker has left the ABC and is working for the government in Dubai.

It also appears that the ABC did broadcast some form of apology on ABC National at some time yesterday. Pathetic really!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008


The BBC World News bulletin I watched yesterday led off with a story of the so-called peaceful demonstration in Gaza that allegedly attracted 40,000 to 50,000 but the true figue was about 10% of that number and included schoolkids given the day off and relieved of the pain of having to watch Assud the Jew-eating rabbit on the Hamas kid’s show Pioneers of Tomorrow.

Reuters reporter Nidal al-Mughrabi [Gazans stage mass protest against Israeli blockade] at least got the numbers right but it was a bit of stretch to call the event "peaceful" when 50 stone-throwers militants were detained. He also added that "militants in the Gaza Strip fired rockets at southern Israel while the protest was under way". Technically correct Mr. al-Mughrabi but in reality the rockets were targetting Israeli civilians i.e. human beings so the "militants are really terrorists but that's not the impression Hamas wants its media dupes to give to consumers of news.

Associated Press Writer Amy Teibel would have won more brownie points from Hamas. She left out the parts about the stone-throwers and the rockets, as did the BBC World News report which airbrushed the Israeli side of the story out of existence altogether.


If you can't find Ed in this picture then he's probably on an important assignment somewhere else which prevents him from reporting news about things that matter.

Haven't found him yet?

Then go directly to Gaza (but don't take your favourite pet with you).

Coming soon: News that happened while Ed was on assignment elsewhere.

Monday, February 25, 2008


Academy Award Night in Hollywood and Pallywood is set to respond with the aid of its media dupes. Israeli newspaper Haaretz reports that hundreds of Gazans are forming a human chain to protest what it calls Israel's "siege" of Gaza and the psycopaths from Hamas are threatening to send women and children to the border to penetrate the border fence and enter Israeli territory. And those media dupes who have looked away for years while Palestinian thugs fired their missiles at Israeli civilians are like Dracula - on their way to watch and report on bloodshed.

"Palestinian journalists said Sunday that Hamas is likely to bring school children to Erez and other potential sites of friction, who will be sent near the crossings to throw stones, as the cameras are rolling."

There was however, no Oscar for Ismail this time. The whole gig fizzled after a much lower than anticipated turnout, possibly a result of the fact that the people regarded the Hamas script involving sending kids out to face the IDF for propaganda purposes a bit of a stinker.

Unreality Check: The MERC Bends for Mr. Ed

It seems that Age Jerusalem Bureau Chief has friends among the pro-Palestinian Israel bashing lobby at Middle East Reality Check. Of course O'Loughlin's little piece was mainly all drivel but that didn't prevent this particular blogger from claiming a TKO in favour of Ed by suggesting that ALP Federal Member for Australian Ports Michael Danby copped a "drubbing" from the Fairfax lame duck who is soon to depart his post to sighs of relief all round from most reasonable observers of the Middle East scene.

Naturally, the nasties at MERC will not be happy to see the back of Mr. Ed but what would they know? They just claimed a "drubbing" in the first kilometre of a marathon race and only mugs do that!

Sunday, February 24, 2008

An Old Story

The Jewish Lobby was doing it tough more than 90 years ago according to this item from the NEW YORK TIMES.

Thought it might be of interest to those following the Mearsheimer/Walt circus of Israel haters.

Have we missed something?

Since the death of terror chief Imad Mughnieh, killed in Damascus by a car bombing blamed on Israel by the usual suspects the world has seen some very warlike and threatening posturing directed at the Jewish State by the leadership of Hizbullah and of Iran. At the same time, the Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Agency has confirmed that Iran continues "to enrich uranium in defiance of repeated UN Security Council resolutions demanding that it suspend the uranium centrifuge program, which could produce both civilian nuclear fuel and the material for a nuclear bomb."

One would think that this would be big news fitting for inclusion in a newspaper which regards itself highly and whose Jerusalem Bureau Chief thinks he is "a reliable source" for news from the patch of the earth that he's supposed to be covering.

But no, there's not a single word about a despicable regime that announces "that Hizbullah's might is increasing with every passing day, and that in the near future, we will witness the disappearance of this cancerous growth called Israel."

So where's the Jerusalem Bureau Chief?

Perhaps somewhere else on "another assignment" in the place where he can usually be found when there's news to be written about Israel's enemies that might show them in a bad light?

Friday, February 22, 2008


''The demonisation of Israel is largely based on lies - much as the demonisation of the Jews during the past 2,000 years has been based on lies. And there is a connection between the two."

This letter by noted historian, Professor Benny Morris appeared this week in the Irish Times [21 February]. It's my letter of the month!.

Israel and the Palestinians.

Madam, - Israel-haters are fond of citing - and more often, mis-citing - my work in support of their arguments. Let me offer some corrections..

The Palestinian Arabs were not responsible "in some bizarre way" (David Norris, January 31st) for what befell them in 1948. Their responsibility was very direct and simple. .

In defiance of the will of the international community, as embodied in the UN General Assembly Resolution of November 29th, 1947 (No. 181), they launched hostilities against theJewish community in Palestine in the hope of aborting the emergence of the Jewish state and perhaps destroying that community. But they lost; and one of the results was the displacement of 700,000 of them from their homes. .

It is true, as Erskine Childers pointed out long ago, that there were no Arab radio broadcasts urging the Arabs to flee en masse; indeed, there were broadcasts by several Arab radio stations urging them to stay put. But, on the local level, in dozens of localities around Palestine, Arab leaders advised or ordered the evacuation of women and children or whole communities, as occurred in Haifa in late April, 1948. And Haifa's Jewish mayor, Shabtai Levy, did, on April 22nd, plead with them to stay, to no avail..

Most of Palestine's 700,000 "refugees" fled their homes because of the flail of war (and in the expectation that they would shortly return to their homes on the backs of victorious Arab invaders). But it is also true that there were several dozen sites, including Lydda and Ramla, from which Arab communities were expelled by Jewish troops..

he displacement of the 700,000 Arabs who became "refugees"- and I put the term in inverted commas, as two-thirds of them were displaced from one part of Palestine to another and not from their country (which is the usual definition of a refugee) - was not a "racist crime" (David Landy, January24th) but the result of a national conflict and a war, with religious overtones, from the Muslim perspective, launched by the Arabs themselves..

here was no Zionist "plan" or blanket policy of evicting the Arab population, or of "ethnic cleansing". Plan Dalet (Plan D), of March 10th, 1948 (it is open and available for all to read in the IDF Archive and in various publications), was the master plan of the Haganah - the Jewish military force that became the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) - to counter the expected pan-Arab assault on the emergent Jewish state. That's what it explicitly states and that's what it was. And the invasion of the armies of Egypt, Jordan, Syria and Iraq duly occurred, on May 15th..

It is true that Plan D gave the regional commanders carte blanche to occupy and garrison or expel and destroy the Arab villages along and behind the front lines and the anticipated Arab armies' invasion routes. And it is also true that mid-way in the 1948 war the Israeli leaders decided to bar the return of the "refugees" (those"refugees" who had just assaulted the Jewish community), viewing them as a potential fifth column and threat to the Jewish state's existence. I for one cannot fault their fears or logic..

he demonisation of Israel is largely based on lies - much as the demonisation of the Jews during the past 2,000 years has been based on lies. And there is a connection between the two..

I would recommend that the likes of Norris and Landy read some history books and become acquainted with the facts, not recycle shopworn Arab propaganda. They might then learn, for example, that the "Palestine War" of 1948 (the "War of Independence," as Israelis call it) began in November 1947, not in May 1948. By May 14th close to 2,000 Israelis had died - of the 5,800 dead suffered by Israel in the whole war (ie almost 1 per cent of the Jewish population of Palestine/Israel, which was about 650,000)..

Yours, etc,
Prof Benny MORRIS, Li-On, Israel.

Thursday, February 21, 2008


The world has given a large collective yawn to this report from Naharnet [hat tip: Elder of Ziyon] entitled "Syrian Border Guards Kill Lebanese Child".

"Syrian border guards on Tuesday opened fire at a Lebanese child killing him, the state-run National News Agency reported. The short report said Abbas Abbas, 16, was shot and seriously wounded by Syrian border guards at the Grand River borderline in north Lebanon. He died later at hospital. The development is the second of its kind in about a week. Lebanon has been demanding demarcation of its borders with Syria in an effort to control illegal activities in both directions."

Wednesday, February 20, 2008


Two Palestinian human rights groups calling for an investigation of the recent explosion in El-Bureij Refugee Camp which killed a Ayman Atallah Ahmad Fayed, a leading "activist" in the armed wing of Islamic Jihad, his wife, three of his children and three neighbours have conceded that work place accidents in crowded Gaza neighbourhoods really do occur with some regularity - PCHR & Al-Mezan Call for Investigating the Explosion in El-Bureij Refugee Camp.

The group's preliminary findings indicate that "there is no evidence to confirm that the explosion was caused by rocket or aerial bombardment by Israeli occupation forces (IOF), as mentioned in some media outlets. It is more likely that it was an internal explosion the circumstances of which are unclear as of yet. Eyewitnesses confirmed seeing smoke and fire issue from Fayed’s house seconds before the explosion. According to similar incidents in the past, this indicates that it may have been an internal explosion."

The findings do not rule out the possibility that the Israelis might have planted "a booby-trapped explosive device inside the house" but, in reality, this seems unlikely.

The groups conclude that -

"- the biggest losers in this tragedy are the Palestinian civilians who were killed, injured, terrorized, and suffered the destruction of their property and

- regardless of the cause of this explosion, both organizations point to the danger of storage of explosives in residential areas by Palestinian resistance groups, which threatens the lives of Palestinian civilians in violation of human rights and International Humanitarian Law. This erroneous practice must stop! And its threat becomes more serious in of the continuous IOF threats."

The deaths of the Islamic Jihad leader, his family and neighbours took place in a Palestinian refugee camp in Gaza. Although the human rights groups mention Israeli "Occupation" Forces, it should be noted that Israel has not occupied Gaza since August 2005 when Israel left the territory lock, stock and barrel. Whilst the groups recognise the threats involved in storage of explosives, they remain quite delusional in their reference to Israeli "occupiers" and, based on their website, have no concern for the human rights of Israeli civilians on the other side of the border who would have been the recipients of the explosive material were it not for this work place accident.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


No, this isn't a headline from today's Melbourne Age but it comes as a shock to see anyway!

UN humanitarian chief condemns Palestinian rocket attacks

“We condemn absolutely the firing of these rockets. There’s no justification for it. They are indiscriminate, there’s no military target,” John Holmes, the U.N. undersecretary general for humanitarian affairs, told The Associated Press during a visit to Sderot.

Tell us something new, Johnny boy!

Sunday, February 17, 2008


Do Palestinians and their friends around the world really want peace and reconciliation with Israel or does their view of "justice" mean that everything to do with the Jewish State has to be obliterated? Is peace a pernicious fiction?

Saturday, February 16, 2008


When Hizbullah's leader Hassan Nasrallah declared open war on Israel after blaming it for the killing of his deputy and master terrorist Imad Mughniyah he again showed his true colours - "The blood of Imad Mughnieh will contribute to the disappearance of the Jewish state," said Nasrallah [Hezbollah declares 'open war' on Israel]. More and more, Nasrallah and his allies are taking on a strikingly similar pose to the man who must surely be the inspiration for these murderers - look at Nasrallah as he addresses his acolytes and declares that "Mughniyah's blood will lead to Israel's end."

However, according to a Lebanese source quoted in Haaretz newspaper, Syrian police have arrested suspects in connection to the killing. And surprise, surprise, the suspects are "mostly Palestinians residing in Syria."

The news that suspects detained in this case include Palestinians should be enough to ensure that the friends of Palestine in the media will erect the usual firewall around this story and therefore consign it to the blank pages.

The story will probably end up alongside this one about another bomb blast involving terrorists in Gaza - Top Islamic Jihad militant, six others killed in Gaza blast, which might have gotten a run because it involved the tragic death of terrorist Ayman Atallah Fayed's wife, a son and a daughter aged 6 and 5 respectively.

Problem is however, that these deaths, like so many others that take place in such circumstances, were most likely the result of a workplace accident. In other words, the Jews weren't involved and as a result, the likelihood is that it will only ever be referenced peripherally in our local news.

By that I mean when a journalist provides statistics of deaths in the Israel/Palestine and includes them in the number of Palestinian non-combatants who have perished and then it will be done in such a way that the blame does fall on the Jews.

That approach is pure Joseph Goebbels and that raises the question why is it that Islamic fascist groups like Hizbullah, Hamas, Islamic Jihad and the Al Aksa Martyrs Brigades enjoy such special protection from so many in the west's media?

Friday, February 15, 2008


It seems that it is not enough for Fairfax Jerusalem Bureau chief Ed O'Loughlin to have the power to determine the worthiness or otherwise of any given item of news from the region he covers (and to be selective in the way he presents the news that he chooses to deliver to his readers). Now, he wants to obliterate any mention in Wikipedia, of any criticism of the partisan way in which he wields the power he has to make such determinations.

Some interesting communications have appeared in Wikipedia following a further attempt by Mr. Adon Emet to have O'Loughlin's (now) controversial biography re-included in the on line encyclopaedia [See here, here and here]. These outline the discussions taking place between various contributors to Wikipedia as to whether Adon Emet's biography should be included on the site. The censors seem to have prevailed.

The following is a message attributed to O'Loughlin (I have no reason to believe that it was not submitted by him and naturally if he were to say that it was not, I would retract it forthwith). O'Loughlin considers the article about him to be "based entirely on partisan sources and falsehoods". He claims that if this article were published by "people who have to publicly stand over and justify what they say" then "it would clearly be actionable". Here is the full text of the message as supplied to me:-

Dear whoever you all are

My name is Ed O'Loughlin - this is my real name, I stress - and I am the subject of this article.

The article as it has appeared in its various manifestations in recent months is a starkly one-sided attack on my personal and professional character which is based entirely on highly partisan sources and falsehoods. The moving forces behind it are anonymous people who do not have the integrity to reveal their identities or interests, and whose malicious intent is quite clear from their contributions to the discussion pages and their vandalisation of posts expressing differing views.

I note that the article has already been deleted once on precisely these grounds, and I am puzzled as to why it has now been re-instated. If it were published in the "old media" - which is to say, by people who have to publicly stand over and justify what they say and suffer the potentially severe personal consequences, such as loss of livelihood - it would clearly be actionable.

Please note that my work has been repeatedly critiqued in the public domain in Australia for the past five years and in that time not one factual error or instance of bias has been substantiated.

Please also note that every newspaper reporter covering the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has to stand up to a level of vexatious attack from interest groups and ethnic partisans unknown in any other posting. Nevertheless, all the complaints against me to our internal ombudsmen and to the Australian Press Council have been dismissed as entirely without merit, including one (Press Council number 1305, December 2005) which went to full arbitration. My employers, whose commitment to truth in journalism comes second to no media organisation in Australia or indeed the world, has seen fit to extend my contract here from the original two years to five years and counting.

I am, overall, an admirer of the Wikipedia project but I am disturbed to see how easily it can be manipulated by those hell-bent on imposing their personal beliefs, without regard to balance or empirical truth. I recently watched an episode of the Colbert Report in which the presenter demonstrated the pitfalls of what he terms "wikiality" by editing the page on African elephants to assert that their numbers are exploding. I now understand what he meant.

I am requesting that this article be deleted. If anybody wants to write about me in future I would expect them to at least have the courtesy and guts to put their real name to their writing, as do I. If the article is not deleted I expect this letter be prominently displayed both on the front page and on the discussion page, and that the letter be protected from the vandalism which has been such a marked feature of this supposed debate.

Yours, Ed O'Loughlin, Middle East Correspondent, Sydney Morning Herald, The Age .

PS contrary to what he or she is allowing this community to believe (see extract from the administrator Avraham's talk page below), “Adon Emett” is not using his or her real name. Unless, that is, the contributor in question really is the Hebrew “Lord of Truth”.

I'm disappointed and surprised that Mr. O'Loughlin is upset that an article could possibly have been written "based entirely on partisan sources and falsehoods". It's something that many newspaper readers come across quite often these days in the mainstream media and that includes stuff that's written by people who have to publicly stand over and justify what they say.

I'm even more disappointed that Mr. O'Loughlin failed to elaborate as to what part of the article was "based entirely on ... falsehoods" and what part of it was "actionable"? Or was the entire article a malicious piece of fiction?

Just to recap, the article appears here.

Did the author get something wrong?

Was O'Loughlin not born in Toronto? Has he not been based in Jerusalem covering news events in Israel and the Palestinain territories (OK at least some news events)? Has his reporting not received criticism from media commentary groups? Was Michael Danby misquoted? Was O'Loughlin not nominated for a "Dishonest Reporter" award by Honest Reporting, a media monitoring group with approximately 140,000 subscribers?

Certainly, the article is critical of O'Loughlin but I'm scratching my head trying to understand what is false and what is actionable about what this innocuous piece actually says. We live in a democracy where the exercise of free speech is a given so why the need for such a stupid demonstration of power? Why the censorship? Why make such a fuss about it?

Frankly, the only thing I can fully comprehend is the role of Wikipedia editor Eleland (is that his or her real name?). Eleland is apparently a Hizbullah supporter and, given that this group of murderers (thankfully reduced in number by one this week) disdains the freedoms we take for granted in our society, it's clear why he or she worked so hard to consign the whole thing to the Blank Pages of Wikipedia.

Thursday, February 14, 2008


Sometimes we come across an illuminating piece of writing that helps us to understand. This opinion piece by Terry Glavin in the Vancouver Sun is brilliant not just because of the way it exposes the vile and nasty nature of the work of Greg Felton who was unwittingly invited to participate in a Vancouver public library's Freedom to Read Week event but also because it sums up the message of the Blank Pages which seeks to expose the use of a similar but more subtle methodology in our media.

"In Felton's words, Hamas is not an Islamist death cult animated by that classic anti-Semitic forgery, the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. It's the equivalent of the French resistance during the Second World War, the 'passionate defender of Palestinians.'

"There are no suicide bombings in Felton's lexicon. There are only 'sacrifice bombings.' Israel itself is a creation of the Nazis. It's the 'Zionist Reich.'

"And that's the sort of ugliness that rushes in the moment the word 'Israel' is mentioned in certain fashionable company these days. Martin Amis settled on the words "secularized anti-Semitism" to describe it.

If those aren't the right words, then words fail me."

Wednesday, February 13, 2008


Sometimes when you have nothing to say, it really means a lot. When Israeli PM Ehud Olmert's spokesman Mark Regev was asked to comment on the death of Hizbullah Deputy Secretary General Imad Mughniyah yesterday evening in a bomb blast in a residential neighborhood of Damascus, he declined comment saying only - "We have released no statement on this matter."

Mughniyah's record as a cowardly mass murderer of the innocent speaks for itself. That he died in Damascus, a city which was last week designated bu UNESCO as "the Arab Capital of Culture for 2008" speaks volumes about the sort of "culture" the Arab leadership in this part of the world has laid in place for its people.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008


Hamas is doing a mighty job bringing up the next generation of psycopaths.

In the past, its children's television programme Pioneers of Tomorrow has exposed young Palestinian children to such nasties as Farfour (the Mickey Mouse rip off who preached jihad), Nahoul (the killer bee who wanted to kill Jews) and its characters have also terrorised animals in the Gaza zoo.

2008 must be the Palestinian Year of the Rabbit because Hamas TV has come up with Assud, the Jew-eating rabbit.

A girl asks the Hamas rabbit: "Why is your name 'Assud' ["lion"], since you are a rabbit?".

ssud, the rabbit: "A rabbit is a [term] for a bad person and coward. And I, Assud, will finish off the Jews and eat them. ".

he girl hostess agrees: "Allah Willing!".

This is totally sick but I'm betting that it won't even make the Odd Spot in many newspapers around the world.

ON THE OTHER HAND: This is what Hamas does to those with who it disagrees - Hamas cartoon prompts paper to close.

Sunday, February 10, 2008


The Elder of Ziyon reminds us that the month of Adar on the Jewish calendar is a good time to dust off some old jokes. In that regard he's doing a great job on his blogsite but he may have unwittingly also provided us with the best joke of the month with his reference to an item in Ian O'Doherty's column from the Irish Independent -


Really, if anything proves the utter credulousness and stupidity displayed by many of the members of the Palestinian Solidarity Campaign, it has to be case of Galway woman -- quelle surprise she's from Galway -- Treasa Ni Cheannabhain and her daughter.

The pair smuggled themselves illegally into Gaza and are now complaining that they are not being allowed to get back into Egypt.

The pair were refused entry into Gaza but entered illegally by wearing those charming full length niquabs (the charming black dress that makes women look like a walking letter box) and met up with some ministers from the charming Hamas government -- which caused the humanitarian crisis in the first place -- and then went around distributing money to local charities.

And how have responded to the Egyptian authorities not allowing these people back into Egypt?

Well, according to them: "Treasa Ni Cheannabhain, from the Galway Palestine Solidarity Campaign, on a humanitarian mission to besieged Gaza with daughter, Naisrin, is now trapped there by the Israelis."

Um, sorry guys. It's the Egyptians. Still, facts are only a Zionist conspiracy, eh?

Although the quote from Ni Cheannabhain on the situation in Gaza was interesting in its insight and political understanding: "We hadn't expected this -- it's very scary."

The phrase dumb and dumber springs to mind.

Here in Australia, we have our own version of dumb and dumber in the form of Fairfax Media's Jerusalem bureau chief who yesterday produced Mid-East keenly follows race to White House. The article appareared in both the Melbourne Age and the Sydney Morning Herald. It was labelled "Analysis" in the former but not the later although it doesn't really matter because it's neither analysis nor straight out reporting - it's the usual anti-Israel propaganda that is by now so familiar with this reporter/analyst.

All of the usual features are there. He mentions Israel's "40-year-old military occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip" (the latter territory is actually under Hamas military occupation today), Bush's 2004 letter that allegedly "countermanded all the UN resolutions", the "wall", the "Israel Lobby" and the prevailing feeling given is that Israel doesn't really want peace. The whole production is laced with the usual O'Loughlin bias despite the writer's attempts to cover them up so in the end, the whole thing falls down for both its lack of analysis and of any factual basis.

If there was a shred of analysis involved, O'Loughlin would have taken a look at Palestinian intentions with regard to the peace negotiations and in particular as to what they've done over the past five years to give the road map a bit of a kick on. The answer is very little if we are to go by the real facts, examples of which you can find everywhere except in the Fairfax Media. I'll bring you some over the coming days when I get over the fits of laughter I'm experiencing at the moment. Irish jokes like O'Loughlin do that to me!

Saturday, February 09, 2008


In treating the Arab-Israeli conflict, the world's bizarre media uniquely focuses on the families of murderers and would be murderers rather than on the victims.

That Al Aksa Marytrs duo whose grieving parents were photographed dutifully mourning their martyred sons over this week's Dimona suicide bombing (Whodunnit) aren't dead at all but languishing in some Egyptian prison. It appears that they were among a number of "activists" captured by the Egyptians in the wake of the glorious Rafah border wall breakout - the one that ended the so-called Israeli blockade of the land which, according to some, it still occupies even though there are no IDF soldiers and not a single Israeli in place in Gaza and real international law (i.e. that which applies everywhere else on this earth) says its not an occupation. Which means the Hamas pair dunnit allowing the usual suspects in the media to now come up with the usual excuses and justification for their murderous behaviour.

Bizarre, isn't it?

But it's not so bizarre in the mixed showbiz/reality news universe of Palestinian current affairs. Professor Barry Rubin explains in Uniquely Bizarre that the "Arab-Israeli conflict definitely holds the record for the most bizarrely treated issue in modern history." In summary:

"Fatah acts as a terrorist group; the PA facilitates terrorism and includes people leading terrorist groups; Fatah views itself as an ally of a group that attacks it and murders its own members; the West aids Fatah and the PA with no attempt to discourage their behavior; Israeli Arab politicians side with terrorism; and Israelis, at the risk of their lives, try to save Arab lives, and would like to have a two-state solution if the other side is ever able to make and implement such a deal.

"Oh, yes, and guess who much of the world blames for the conflict. As I said, uniquely bizarre."

And the mainstream media willingly swallows all of the lies and the tripe that the Palestinian PR circus serves up - every single bit!

Friday, February 08, 2008


Yesterday, during an early-morning foray into the Gaza Strip, Israeli troops uncovered underground qassam launch silos like the one pictured above - Underground Kassam silos found in Gaza.

The army said the launchers were big enough to hold a qassam or Grad-model Katyusha rocket that could be launched by remote control.

Some 20 qassam rockets hit the western Negev yesterday including one of that hit a garage adjacent to a house in Sderot, causing a fire and sending three people into shock.

During the operation, the troops killed seven Palestinian gunmen affiliated with Hamas and Islamic Jihad. I wonder if the news of what was discovered during the operation kept their deaths on the blank pages? After all, according to what the stringers tell journalists to write in their newspapers, Hamas rarely involves itself in quassam rocket fire, preferring instead to work towards the attainment of universal peace and brotherhood.

Thursday, February 07, 2008


PICTURED ABOVE: A spokesperson for a Palestinian ctivist group in action [DISNEY]

The credibility rating of Palestinian terrorist groups has never been particularly high even among the usual suspects in the media who love to believe some of their inane outpourings and who even cite from these sources or those close to them as if they were the absolute truth.

This week, as rival groups jostled among each other to claim responsibility for the suicide bombing atrocity in Dimona, their farcical boasting led to confusion as to who was really responsible.

For some background to the confusion see - Hamas Claims Responsibility for Blast by Isabel Kershner of the New York Times.

"The Hamas claim on Tuesday was made amid growing confusion in Israel and in Palestinian cities and towns over the true identity of the Dimona bombers and their dispatchers. Soon after the bombing, the Aksa Martyrs Brigades militia in Gaza, which is loosely affiliated with Fatah, the mainstream rival of Hamas, claimed responsibility for the attack in conjunction with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and a third, unknown group.

"The Aksa Martyrs Brigades, particularly in Gaza, often contravene the instructions of Fatah leaders in the West Bank who are engaged in peace talks with Israel.

"Those groups identified the bombers as two Gaza residents: Louai al-Aghwani, 21, a resident of Gaza City, who was said by his family to have been a Fatah supporter; and Musa Arafat, 23, a Popular Front activist from a village near Khan Yunis.

"There were conflicting statements from the Aksa Martyrs Brigades about whether the two bombers had entered Israel via Egyptian territory or directly from Gaza.

"But Hamas identified the bombers as Muhammad al-Hirbawi and Shadi al-Zaghair, both from Hebron."

This gave the media at least four sets of devasted parents of would be/could be suicide bombers about who they could focus their stories of pain and suffering in their mourning. There were more of photo opportunities for bereaved relatives on the following day when the IDF caught and killed some more terrorists on their way to commit mayhem in Gaza. Plenty of coverage for these people; much less than for those who mourned the Israeli terror victim.

At least we also had some pictorial evidence that Gazans were not starving as some in the media would have us believe judging by the volume of sweets and cakes being handed out in celebration of the murder of a 73 year old lady for no reason other than that she was Jewish.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008


The latest edition of the Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council (AIJAC)' impressive monthly magazine contains an excellent piece from Jamie Hyams - Media Microscope: Legally Blind in which he takes certain journalists to task for unjustly attacking Israel’s conduct, "often by rewriting international law or United Nations resolutions to suit their purpose."

There are no prizes for guessing the identity of the chief culprit but I wonder what qualifications some of these journalists have to make their astounding statements interpreting international law and political science?

Tuesday, February 05, 2008


A Palestinian boy distributes sweets and flowers to people in the southern Gaza Strip after a Palestinian suicide bomber blew himself up in southern Israel February 4, 2008. A Palestinian suicide bomber blew himself up and police shot dead his accomplice in an attack in a shopping centre in southern Israel on Monday that killed at least one Israeli, emergency services said.REUTERS/Mohammed Salem (GAZA)

It was not for nothing that media watchdog Honest Reporting awarded malevolent Melbourne Age Jerusalem Bureau chief Ed O’Loughlin its annual 2007 Dishonest Reporter award for his warped sense of moral equivalence in reporting the conflict between Israel and its neighbours.

Mr. Ed has been providing moral cover for terrorists in the region for years. He deceptively paints Hamas, an organisation that has a written charter advocating the destruction of Israel and genocide against Jews, as boy scouts. He shuns its grubby incitement to racist hatred even on children’s television programmes and its complicity in rocket attacks on civilian targets. He whitewashes terrorist activity against the Jewish state and at the same time, attempts to turn its efforts in countering those who would murder its citizens on their head by making them appear to be deliberate and calculated attempts to oppress a downtrodden and suffering people.

O’Loughlin is hung up on statistics. The conflicting and confusing casualty figures he used last week in his appaling coverage of the results of the Winograd Commission were an embarrasment to journalism and to his newspaper. His report in today's Age on the terrorist attack in Dimona - Israeli dies in Palestinian suicide attack is even worse. In it, he seeks to draw equivalence between the atrocity of the suicide bombers who were foiled in their attempt to cause much greater carnage by alert security against terrorist operations.

"The attack is the first suicide bombing in Israel since three men were killed in an attack on the Red Sea resort of Eilat just over a year ago.

"Since then six Israeli civilians, six soldiers and an Ecuadorean migrant labourer have been killed by Palestinians.

"At least 420 Palestinian civilians and militants were killed by Israeli action in the same period."

O'Loughlin makes no distinction whatsover between Palestinian actions which are mainly calculated to cause mass deaths among civilian populations and IDF actions where the targets are terrorists who as a matter of tactics and strategy deliberately embed themselves among their own civilian populations thereby putting their own people in harm's way.

Further, he makes no attempt to inform his readers of another statistic - the fact that in roughly the same period for which he supplies his casualty figures, more than 620 Palestinian civilians and militants (including almost 50 women and children) were killed by violent Palestinian actions.

And if there is any doubt that O'Loughlin is covering for the genocidal Hamas regime then consider the fact that while his report attributes the attack to a "splinter" group of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah party (one of a few terrorist groups that claimed responsibility) he neglects to mention that the killers came from Gaza after Hamas smashed through its border fence with Egypt at Rafah. Nor does he attempt to inform readers where Hamas stands in relation to the attack. According to a report in Haaretz (which O'Loughlin has quoted from in the past when that paper is critical of Israel's actions), "(i)n Gaza, Hamas spokesman Ayman Taha said he did not know whether his group was involved, but said the attack was justified."

That's right - a representative of the elected Palestinian leadership Hamas said that a suicide attack was justified. Those boy scouts command so much respect from this journalist that he is unable or unwilling to tell the world that they really are nothing better than a bunch of murderous barbarians.

Monday, February 04, 2008


The Sydney Morning Herald today provides op ed space to Mr. Yuval Rotem, Israel's ambassador to Australia in which he writes about the voices missing from the Gaza debate. Ambassador Rotem opens up a new universe of facts from the region which are rarely discussed in Fairfax publications. Perhaps this is the media group's way of asking for atonement for the despicable conduct of its letters editor on the issue of the treatment of Gazan civilians last month?


Sunday, February 03, 2008

The Art of Lying

Picture: As if their forefathers didn't cause enough problems in the region, a bunch of brain addled Pommy scrawlers are planning to produce 425 miles of this sort of garbage in order to really piss of the Palestinians.

The Fairfax stable includes a finance newspaper, the Australian Financial Review that has pretensions in areas other than the sphere of finance and it therefore sometimes treads into areas about which it knows nothing. The other day, AFR published an article covering arts and culture by Peter Kennard which originally appeared in The New Statesman under the title "Art attack". It's about a supposedly an increasingly "influential" movement of political artists operating outside the mainstream including those like Banksy who come to the West Bank to scrawl on the walls that form a small part of Israel's security barrier which has saved so many lives from terrorist attacks in the years since it was erected.

Kennard claims in his confused piece of agitprop that all the artists who visited area (including his good self) "are well informed about the Middle East and came to Bethlehem to show their solidarity with the Palestinians".

Well actually ... to use the Australian vernacular, Kennard is a true artist type - he's a bullshit artist!

Firstly, Banksy and his mates were not all welcomed by the natives. Indeed, one of his so-called works of art was covered up by the locals because it caused them offence. Something to do with donkeys!

But Banksy isn't the only artist making an ass of himself. Kennard isn't bad either. Take this statement for example -

"there is a concrete wall, 425 miles long"

He's wrong about that and most visitors to the region will tell you that the barrier is a wall in only a few places i.e. where Palestinian snipers used to have sufficient cover to fire directly at the men, women and children on the other side. The rest of the length of the barrier is made out of wire fences and other material - not concrete. It's obvious that Kennard has not put an ounce of research into the article and has not seen the greater proportion of the length of the barrier. It's equally obvious that he doesn't really care anyway!

Liar, ignoramus, brain addled by the local hashish or all three. Take your pick!

The big question however, is why does Fairfax give oxygen to such obnoxious people?

How many Hamasniks does it take to change a light globe?

Hamas is floating a superb idea - economic disengagement from Israel. Strangely enough, when the Israelis suggest such a thing it's called "collective punishment" and a breach of international law but when Hamas raises the idea, the world more or less yawns.

However, full marks for initiative go to Ahmed Yousef. Leave Israel alone, go your own way and the Israelis will leave you alone.

Saturday, February 02, 2008


The "impoverished" Gazans have been on a shopping spree over the past week or so spending between US$250 and US$500 million on such diverse goods as food and clothing, cigarettes (by the box load), tv's, dvd's, computers, motor bikes and enough fertiliser to maintain the Garden of Eden into perpetuity. Cartoonist Yaakov Kirschen (above) has it just about right.

While the usual suspects in the media have been looking the other way the following stories have been largely unreported in this country:-

* 20 Gazans caught in Sinai in possession of explosives, surveillance devices,

* Muslim Brotherhood men meet with Hamas in Gaza,

* Hamas counterfeits Egyptian currency (automatically translated from the Arabic).

And just in case you might think the media dupes are covering up only fraudulent activity on the part of the fascists in Hamas, here's a story about Fatah, the party of Israel's peace partner:-

Fatah TV Broadcasts Daily Call For Ethnic Cleansing of Jews.

More material for the Blank Pages!

POSTSCRIPT: Apropos of the above, at least the Australian is not afraid to mention things that are unmentionable elsewhere in the Australian press - Cairo has more to fear from Hamas than Israel.

"But Gaza is sovereign Hamas territory, Hamas is the Palestinian branch of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood, and Egypt - not Israel - is the country that has most to fear from a statelet that is at once the toehold, the sanctuary and the springboard of an Islamist revolution."

There's that Muslim Brotherhood again. Those far leftists and their acolytes in the media who support Hamas have no idea what they're supporting with their sympathetic treatment of these fascists. A history lesson could be in order.

Friday, February 01, 2008


The Winograd Commission has released its findings into Israel's conduct of the Second Lebanon War and appears to have caught some commentators in the media by surprise given the confusion of some like Melbourne Age reporter Ed O'Loughlin in his efforts over the past two days at explaining what the inquiry was all about - Israel report finds Lebanon war a 'serious failure', Lebanon report steps up tension (31/1) and Israeli army blamed for Lebanon war failure (1/2)*.

That's quite a barrage of misinformation and confusion on the subject but standard fare so far as this correspondent is concerned. Robin Shepherd of the Times explains why such commentaries are so far off the mark - A barrage against Israel.

But beyond his confusion, O'Loughlin does inadvertently raise a point -

"The commission did not examine accusations by international rights groups that Israeli forces committed war crimes by indiscriminately attacking Lebanese civilians, around 1000 of whom were killed by Israeli air strikes and bombardments.

"We did not find it appropriate to deal with issues that are part of a political and propaganda war against the state," the report said.

Such a pity too because here was a perfect opportunity to expose the political and propaganda war fought at the time and since by the likes of O'Loughlin himself against the Jewish State. It's a propaganda war fought by way of spreading misinformation like the statistics of the casualties. In an asymmetric war fought by civilian armies like Hizbullah and Hamas whose members operate from positions embedded inside populated areas how is it possible to discern whether the casualties are combatants or not? Yet O'Loughlin consistently painted these figures with the added words "mostly civilians" without having any regard to this fact.

O'Loughlin is thoroughly confused even about the statistics. In the first article of 31 January he tells us that during the was the Israelis killed "1,200 Lebanese, mostly civilians ..." but in the second published the same day, the numbers have changed drastically - "Israel's own bombardment of Lebanon killed around 1000 civilians, while between 250 and 500 Hezbollah members died in the fighting ..."

How many?

And from where has he suddenly plucked out the number of up to 500 "Hezbollah members" who died in the fighting? O'Loughlin who was conveniently moved directly into Lebanon at the start of the war never reported this information at the time (others say the number could be significantly higher). Perhaps this inconsistency is understandable given the nature of his sources?

But what O'Loughlin really missed was the substance of the report which ruled that Israel generally complied with war directives laws, which are part of international law, both with regard to the justification for initiating the war and with regard to combat operations themselves. That and the fact that such an inquiry was carried out in the first place because there's nothing of similar ilk on the other side.

Actually, there is no reporting from O'Loughlin of the failures, the crimes and the misdemeanours of the other side at all. Last week, when Hizbullah leader Nasrallah went into a barbaric foam at the mouth rant about holding the body parts of missing Israeli soldiers, the journalist went completely schtumm. And that's the other role that the media propagandists play against the Jewish State - they conveniently omit to tell their readers many of the important facts, thereby painting a totally distorted picture of the events.

It's a pity that Winograd saw fit not to expose this facet of the Second Lebanon War. It was such a missed opportunity!

* As an aside I must say I'm confused as to why the Age saw fit to accompany this article on the Winograd Commission with a photograph of a hook nosed Orthodox Jew with tooth missing throwing snow in the Old City of Jerusalem that resembles the typical racist caricatures of the first half of the last century. It had no connection with the story whatsoever. Perhaps, O'Loughlin's stories are now syndicated in Der Sturmer.