Eretz Israel is our unforgettable historic homeland...The Jews who will it shall achieve their State...And whatever we attempt there for our own benefit will redound mightily and beneficially to the good of all mankind. (Theodor Herzl, DerJudenstaat, 1896)

We offer peace and amity to all the neighbouring states and their peoples, and invite them to cooperate with the independent Jewish nation for the common good of all. The State of Israel is ready to contribute its full share to the peaceful progress and development of the Middle East.
(From Proclamation of the State of Israel, 5 Iyar 5708; 14 May 1948)

With a liberal democratic political system operating under the rule of law, a flourishing market economy producing technological innovation to the benefit of the wider world, and a population as educated and cultured as anywhere in Europe or North America, Israel is a normal Western country with a right to be treated as such in the community of nations.... For the global jihad, Israel may be the first objective. But it will not be the last. (Friends of Israel Initiative)

Wednesday 27 May 2020

The Legal Status of the Territories Beyond the Green Line (video)

Avi Bell is an Israeli Professor of Law at the University of San Diego School of Law and at Bar-Ilan University's Faculty of Law, as well as a Senior Fellow at the Kohelet Policy Forum.

From that estimable organisation UK Lawyers for Israel comes this video, not quite one hour long,  of the professor in conversation with Oxford-educated London barrister Natasha Hausdorf, who has a LLM from Tel Aviv University in the areas of international law and the law of armed conflict.

Using illustrative matter to explain his points, Professor Bell enlightens us on the topic "Israel, Territory and International Law".

Monday 25 May 2020

David Singer: PLO Opens Door to Jordan Returning to Judea and Samaria

Here's the latest article by Sydney lawyer and international affairs analyst David Singer.

He writes:

Advancing an end to the 100-years-old Jewish-Arab conflict has becomea miraculous possibility since the formation of an Israeli Government of National Unity just 7 days ago.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu immediately gave the lie to mounting international opposition claiming that Israel’s intention to restore Jewish sovereignty in 30% of Judea and Samaria amounted to “West Bank annexation”:
“It’s time to apply the Israeli law and write another glorious chapter in the history of Zionism. These territories are where the Jewish nation was born and grew.This will not distance us from peace, it will bring us closer.”
The Jewish People’s right to reconstitute its ancient Jewish National Home in Judea and Samaria – the biblical heartland of the Jewish People  – after 3000 years – had been recognized by the international community in:
• 1920: The San Remo Resolution and the Treaty of Sevres
• 1922: The League of Nations Mandate for Palestine
• 1945: Article 80 United Nations Charter
Attempts by that international community to deny such vested legal rights in the Jewish People over the past 53 years had exacerbated the long-running conflict – contributing materially to it failing to be resolved.

Netanyahu had no compunction in calling out and exposing the continuing travesty of justice that these current protestations represented.

However the roadblock jamming any progress in resolving the conflictwas suddenly cleared when days later PLO President Mahmoud Abbas announced:
"The Israeli occupation authority, as of today, has to shoulder all responsibilities and obligations in front of the international community as an occupying power over the territory of the occupied state of Palestine, with all its consequences and repercussions based on international law and international humanitarian law, particularly the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949, which holds the occupying power responsible for the protection of the civilian population under occupation and their property, criminalizes collective punishment, bans theft of resources, appropriation and annexation of land, bans forced transfer of the population of the occupied territory and bans transfer of the population of the occupying state (the colonialists) to the land it occupies, which all are grave violations and war crimes"
Stripped of the lies and false and deceptive claims contained in this statement that have formed part and parcel of the PLO’s propaganda arsenal since its formation in 1964 – Abbas’s message was clear: Abbas was now turning over responsibility for Judea and Samaria to Israel.

The PLO had never claimed “regional sovereignty over the West Bank in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan” or “on the Gaza Strip” as article 24 of its founding 1964 Charter declared. Its activities were to be “on the national popular level in the liberational, organizational, political and financial fields”.

This PLO position only changed in 1968 after Jordan – having occupied Judea and Samaria between 1950 and 1967 driving out every Jew living there – lost that territory to Israel in the Six Day War. Gaining sovereignty in 100% of Judea and Samaria by the creation of another Arab State became the focus of the PLO from 1968.

President Trump’s peace plan offeringthe PLO possibly 70% of Judea and Samaria plus Gaza (see map below) has been rejected by the PLO.

Abbas –  in turning over responsibility for Judea and Samaria to Israel  – has opened the door to Jordan replacing the PLO as Israel’s negotiating partner.Successful negotiations between Jordan and Israel could see Jordan annexing part of Judea and Samaria, Jordanian citizenship being restored for the Arab residents as existed between 1950 and 1988 and a possible end to the Jewish-Arab conflict.
King Abdullah – expect a call from President Trump.

Author’s note: The cartoon –commissioned exclusively for this article —is by YaakovKirschen aka “Dry Bones” –one of Israel’s foremost political and social commentators –whose cartoons have graced the columns of Israeli and international media publications for decades. His cartoons can be viewed at Drybonesblog.

Sunday 24 May 2020

Nasties, Nitwits & Nutjobs (videos)

The hypocrisy of the anti-Israel anti-patriarchy "pro-Palestinian" Western feministas knows few or no bounds, so I suppose they're more than comfortable with this:

How about this indoctrination of young minds by the fiends of Hamas, though? Yes, the video's deveral years old, but what was taught in it presumably corrupted some youngsters, who in turn will  transmit what was learned to their own some day. (Warning: distressing scenes of cruelty to animals, despite that much-repeated story of The Prophet loving cats so much that he once cut off his sleeve rather than disrurb a sleeping feline).

Meanwhile, catch the UK-based Neturei Karta nut Elhanan Beck propagandising for the enemy on Al Quds Day this year:

Another Neturei Karta nut:

 Much more re this year's Al Quds Day in lockdown on David Collier's blog here

Wednesday 20 May 2020

For the Biased ABC, "Professor Sprout" Spouts her Leftist Bile

She took out Australian citizenship in 2013, did British actress Miriam Margolyes, who divides her time between the land of her birth and that of her adoption.

The 79-year-old, whose acting roles include Professor Sprout in the Harry Potter films, received her certificate from the fair hand of then prime minister Julia Gillard herself, declaring at the time that she was looking forward to voting left here.

Ten years ago, following an anti-Israel outburst by Ms Margolyes on the BBC's Andrew Marr Show, British blogger Ray Cook took her measure, here.  What he wrote of her still fits.

The inveterate Israel-basher is known to make and sign statements that denigrate the Jewish State and give aid and comfort to Israel's enemies.  This, for instance, sponsored by APAN, the Australia Palestine Advocacy Network.

This, too, for example:
'Along with more than 600 other fellow artists, we are announcing today that we will not engage in business-as-usual cultural relations with Israel. We will accept neither professional invitations to Israel, nor funding, from any institutions linked to its government.... Now we are saying, in Tel Aviv, Netanya, Ashkelon or Ariel, we won’t play music, accept awards, attend exhibitions, festivals or conferences, run masterclasses or workshops, until Israel respects international law and ends its colonial oppression of the Palestinians....'
And this, from 2015, which gave joy to the many Israel-haters who infest the corridors of the ABC, the BBC's terrible twin Down Under (taxpayer-funded, accordingly obliged to be objective in its treatment of news and current affairs, but not), and pack the studio audience and dominate the panel of QandA, its equivalent of the BBC's Question Time

She was an obligingly leftwing panellist, as her ABC hosts knew she would be, not only demonising Israel, but to rip roaring approval from the usual suspects insulting Aussie prime minister Tony Abbott ("He's a Tit!"), who as a conservative and a practising Catholic to boot is everything the arch-secularist (though pro-Islam) ABC abhors.

Back in 2013 when she received her Aussie citizenship Ms Margolyes enthused about Australia, telling the Sydney Morning Herald, inter alia:
"The main thing is a lack of class," she said. "I don't like class distinction and there's too much of that in England. There's an energy here - an optimism, a vitality. I think England doesn't have that anymore."
In a new three-part ABC documentary she has deplored, among other supposed failings, the fact that Australia has become the "colony of America" and that "Now, there is a sourness, a narrowness and a racism, which I will fight wherever I see it for the rest of my life".  And she's used the F word to defy her critics.

This is vintage ABC, and vintage Margolyes.  She's entitled to her views, of course, but the sheer bloody-mindedness and hypocrisy of the national broadcaster in all this is not lost on Sky News commentator and Australian newspaper journalist Chris Kenny:
'Sky News host Chris Kenny says a documentary series on the ABC which "bags Australia" by UK actress Miriam Margolyes is the same "clichéd, left-wing, morally superior, identity politics on steroids drivel" constantly seen  on the public broadcaster.
Ms Margolyes ... made headlines earlier in May after professing to having preferred UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson to have died when he was ill with COVID-19.
"Our national broadcaster only praises Margolyes, in fact it has given her a job making a documentary series about Australia," Mr Kenny said.
In an interview with the ABC's Fran Kelly, Ms Margolyes was not even asked about her "controversial, widely publicised comments about preferring a conservative leader to die".
"Instead the ABC just asked her to bag Australia," Mr Kenny said.
"A billion dollars a year to deliver anti-intellectual attacks on Australia, a public broadcaster dedicated to dumbing down the nation".'  [Emphasis added] 

Monday 18 May 2020

David Singer: Jordan’s King Abdullah Tries to Torpedo Trump Peace Plan

Here's the latest article by Sydney lawyer and international affairs analyst David Singer.

He writes:

King Abdullah of Jordan has attempted to torpedo President Trump’s peace plan by falsely suggesting it could lead to a one-state solution – not the two-state solution Trump clearly envisages. 

Abdullah's intent became apparent in this interview with Der Spiegel:
DER SPIEGEL: In a few weeks’ time, the Israeli parliament plans to discuss U.S. President Donald Trump’s Middle East peace plan, which includes the annexation of the West Bank by Israel. What would it mean for Jordan if Trump’s plan for the Middle East were to be implemented?
The question was false in its content and framed in the language of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) – using the term “annexation of the West Bank” instead of “restoring Jewish sovereignty in 30% of the West Bank after 3000 years”.

Abdullah responded to this canard:
King Abdullah II: Is now, in the midst of the corona pandemic, really the time to discuss whether we want a one- or two-state solution for Israel and Palestine? Or should we be discussing how we can fight the pandemic together? The two-state solution is the only way for us to be able to move forward.
Why gratuitously throw in a one-state solution?  Why no mention by Abdullah that the two-state solution could not move forward because the PLO has absolutely refused to negotiate with Israel?

The interviewer’s next question corrected his first – asking about Israel annexing “large parts of the Palestinian territories”:
DER SPIEGEL:  Politicians like Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu want to take advantage of the opportunity presented by Trump and annex large parts of the Palestinian territories.
Abdullah ignored the correction – repeating his false one-state allegation:
King Abdullah II: Leaders who advocate a one-state solution do not understand what that would mean. What would happen if the Palestinian National Authority collapsed? There would be more chaos and extremism in the region. If Israel really annexes the West Bank in July, it would lead to a massive conflict with the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.
Neither Trump nor Netanyahu has advocated a one-state solution.

The “Palestinian Authority” no longer exists – Mahmoud Abbas having changed its name to the “State of Palestine” by decree on 3 January 2013.

Maybe a massive conflict if Israel “annexed” the West Bank – but 30% – an area of 1697 km2 [square kilometres]?

The interviewer did not query Abdullah – but blithely continued:
DER SPIEGEL: You would suspend the peace treaty with Israel?
King Abdullah II: I don’t want to make threats and create a loggerheads atmosphere, but we are considering all options. We agree with many countries in Europe and the international community that the law of the strongest should not apply in the Middle East.
Empty posturing.

The Hashemites have controlled Jordan since 1920.

The PLO has controlled Areas A and B of Judea and Samaria since 2004 and allowed its hapless residents only one vote in 2006.

The law of the strongest is alive and kicking in the Middle East.

Abdullah faces Trump calling on him to fill the negotiating void left by the PLO jettisoning Trump’s plan – because:
  • Transjordan invaded Judea and Samaria in 1948 driving out every Jew living there
  • Transjordan and Judea and Samaria were merged into one territorial entity in 1950 and renamed “Jordan” whilst “Judea and Samaria” was renamed “West Bank”
  • “West Bank” Arab residents were granted Jordanian citizenship between 1950 and 1988
  • PLO made no claims to territorial sovereignty until Jordan lost Judea and Samaria to Israel in the 1967 Six-Day War.
The one-state solution is a desperate Abdullah ploy to remain uninvolved.

The realistic two-state solution – Jordan and Israel – is coming.

 Author’s note: The cartoon – commissioned exclusively for this article — is by Yaakov Kirschen aka “Dry Bones” –  one of Israel’s foremost political and social commentators –  whose cartoons have graced the columns of Israeli and international media publications for decades. His cartoons can be viewed at Drybonesblog

Thursday 14 May 2020

An Interesting Facet of the History of Zionism

It's almost 15 minutes long, but is fast paced, this talk by a British academic who specialises in the history of British-Israel relations.

The speaker is Dr James Vaughan, of the Department of International Relations at the University of Aberystwyth in Wales, the first and arguably still the best such department in the world, which had as its inaugural head Professor Alfred Zimmern, who was of Jewish extraction.

Dr Vaughan is the author of Unconquerable Minds. The Failure of American and British Propaganda in the Arab Middle East, 1945-1957 (Palgrave, 2005), and while he continues to publish on British propaganda policy towards the Arab Middle East and Iran he is currently researching  the changing attitudes and policies of Britain's main political parties towards Zionism, Israel, Palestinian nationalism and the Arab-Israel dispute.

The talk is entitled '"From Aberystwyth to San Remo" - The Birth of International Politics and the Jewish National Home'  To quote the page of the original uploader, UK Lawyers for Israel Charitable Trust, it explains how scholars such as Zimmern and Sir Charles Webster
"combined idealistic internationalism and a ‘Wilsonian’ belief in the rights of small nations to self-determination with an ability to bridge the worlds of academia and politics, both through their connections to Chaim Weizmann and the Zionist Organization, and in their role as participants in the making of the post-war settlement."

Monday 11 May 2020

David Singer: Trump and Netanyahu Ready to Create History in Judea and Samaria

Here's the latest article by Sydney lawyer and international affairs analyst David Singer.

He writes:

President Trump and Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu are readying to create history together on 1 July when Israel restores Jewish sovereignty after 3000 years in 1697km² [square kilometers] of territory comprising 30% of Judea and Samaria – the Jewish People's biblical and ancient heartland.

About 65000 Arabs – 5% of the Arab population of Judea and Samaria – and 450000 Jews live in the area proposed for Jewish sovereignty.

The road forward has been made possible after Netanyahu was unanimously confirmed as Israel’s next Prime Minister by 11 judges of Israel’s Supreme Court.

Trump’s map (pictured below) gives practical expression to the following international treaties and documents justifyingIsrael’s proposed action:
• The San Remo Resolution and Treaty of Sevres in 1920
• The League of Nations Mandate for Palestine in 1922
• Article 80 of the UN Charter

Trump’s translation of a dream – begun 100 years ago at San Remo – into a miraculous reality for the Jewish people in July2020 – should be welcomed by every Jew worldwide – privileged to be the generation to see this amazing reaffirmation of the Jewish People’s past history coming alive again.

Instead, this momentous occasion is being met with opposition by many Jewish organisations, media and individuals concerned at what they call “West Bank Annexation” – the identical language used by the UN and EU, PLO and Arab League in opposing Israel’s action.

Nothing could be further from the truth. Restoring Jewish sovereignty in Judea and Samaria –      designated for reconstitution of the Jewish National Home by the international community 100 years ago – is not “West Bank annexation”.

Trump and Netanyahu – therefore – would certainly not have welcomed the publication in the New York Times of an article by Middle East Forum President – Daniel Pipes – headlined “Annexing the West Bank would hurt Israel”.

Pipes opposes Israel’s decision for six reasons:
• President Trump could well erupt in fury at Israel for “unilaterally acting”on 1 July
• “Annexation”would alienate and weaken Israel’s diminishing number of friends in the Democratic Party and in Europe
• “Unilateral Israeli annexation”could end Israel’sexpanding ties with Sunni Arab states.
• “Annexation”could destabilize “Jordan, the West Bank and Gaza”.
• “Annexation”is sure to alienate Israel’s Leftwhich would lead probably to a contingent of Israeli Zionists turning anti-Zionist, with some Israelis leaving the country in disgust
• “Annexation”would be likely to make more Palestinians eligible to become citizens of Israel. 
Two of Pipes’s reasons suggesting “unilateral action” by Israel are simply untrue.

The remaining four will not deter Netanyahu from proceeding to realise this epic milestone in the history of the Jewish People – simultaneously strengthening Israel’s ability to protect the safety and security of its citizens against those Arab neighbours who seek its destruction.

Pipes asks: “And what does annexation actually achieve?”

His answer indicates he has no conception of the miracle unfolding before his very eyes:
“It is a symbolic move, a gesture toward Israelis living on the West Bank in legal limbo. But annexation does not extricate them from that limbo, since it is likely that no important government in the world would recognize their change in legal status.”
This is no symbolic move. The territory involved may be miniscule but this moment in the timeline of the Jewish People is also highly significant for mankind.

Those Jews who returned to reclaim Judea and Samaria following the Six Day War in1967 – after every Jew living there was driven out in 1948 – will be finally recognized and vindicated. Words count.  Pipes – like so many other critical Jews – is sadly missing the big picture.

Author’s note: The cartoon – commissioned exclusively for this article – is by Yaakov Kirschen aka “Dry Bones” – one of Israel’s foremost political and social commentators – whose cartoons have graced the columns of Israeli and international media publications for decades. His cartoons can be viewed at Drybonesblog

Saturday 9 May 2020

Culture Wars, Corbyn, & Cardinal Pell

"It's not a miracle. It's justice." That was how "Australia's Dreyfus", Cardinal George Pell, reportedly corrected a well-meaning prison guard on the morning of 7 April, when, after spending 13 months on jail for preposterous alleged historic sex crimes against two 13-year-old choirboys, the cardinal's conviction was overturned by the unanimous judgment of the full bench of Australia's High Court, 7:0.  As is well-known, the cardinal had been convicted on the accusation of a single accuser, with no corroborating evidence whatsover, and despite the countervailing testimony of defence witnesses. 

The High Court's decision was a stinging rebuke for the two Victorian Supreme Court justices who last August rejected Pell's Appeal to have his December 2018 conviction quashed, and a ringing endorsement of the careful analytical judgment of the third Supreme Court judge, Justice Mark Weinberg, who had shown good reason why the conviction was unsafe. Weinberg, a brilliant legal mind with an impressive curriculum vitae, was the only one of the three Supreme Court judges with expertise in criminal law.

A conservative cleric: Herald Sun, 13 February1997
Although the Pell Case has often been compared to that of Alfred Dreyfus, in so far as two innocent men were robbed of their liberty and reputation on trumped up charges, their principal persecutors markedly differ, the conservative Pell's being overwhemingly men and women of the left and far left, often atheistic and militantly secular, as well as in many cases being hostile to Israel. Many embody the mindset, seen in an odiously inappropriate tweet on the day of Pell's release from jail by Victoria's state premier Dan Andrews, as well as in comments by the extreme feminista Twitterati, that the accuser in sexual assault crimes must always be believed.  (Although, the hypocrisy of the left being ever-present, that mindset does not apply in the case of a former Australian Labor Party leader accused by a young woman of rape.  Same regarding Joe Biden.)

To their shame, some lefty Jewish acquaintances of mine have joined in the foaming-at-the-mouth demonisation of Pell (that continues from leftist sources since his release) with such social media statements as "We all know he did it" (imagine what these libellous folk would say had they been around to witness such prejudiced comments about the exonerated Mendel Beilis) and with ill-informed claptrap, reminiscent of dark antisemitic tropes about the global power of the Rothschild Bank, declaring as fact that the financial power of the Vatican secured Pell's release (in fact, he received no church funds whatsoever to finance his defence).

Ballarat Courier, 4 June 2002
The principal villains in the decades-long persecution of Cardinal Pell (who since his release has quite rightly deplored the "guilt by accusation" mindset that underlay his case and threatens to underlie others if not discarded) is the ABC (taxpayer-funded, left-dominated, and habitually flouting its obligation to present news and analysis in a fair and balanced way), which has engaged in a scandalous campaign of "vigilante journalism" against him,  led by reporter Louise Milligan, whose book Cardinal: The Rise and Fall of George Pell anticipated his "fall" long before his trial and incarceration and is apparently riddled with errors, with a supporting case of ABC personnel too numerous to mention here.  They and their leftist pals in the Fairfax media and the independent Guardian Australia are still at it, since his release, exulting in the highly unfair findings of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses into Child Sexual Abuse that had been redacted until now [document here]  and pushing calls that he be defrocked. (On that unfairness, see, for instance, NewsCorp and Sky News journalist Andrew Bolt's interview with Peter Westmore here and Gerard Henderson's article here) Also in the vanguard of the anti-Pell crusade that saw the cardinal charged with the offences of which he has since been acquitted was the politically contaminated leadership of the police force in the state of Victoria, which, in what was effectively a Get Pell exercise, touted for complaints against him. (Incidentally, to see how low the anti-Pell forces have been capable of stooping, see this ABC report.)

The  interview which Cardinal Pell gave, days after his release, to one of his staunchest supporters, Andrew Bolt, discusses these sinister issues, and there are many more reports and videos online that do, one of the most interesting being this interview on the day of the release with Chris Merritt, legal affairs editor of The Australian newspaper.  There's also this, Gerard Henderson of the Sydney Institute talking to Andrew Bolt at the end of April. And be sure to have a look at Australian Catholic University vice-chancellor Professor Greg Craven's tongue-lashing of the so-called national broadcaster, on 7 April

Like their counterparts on the BBC, ABC journalists are a self-congratulatory nose-thumbing lot, who seem to forget that public funds pay their salaries. The nauseating tweet at right, a paeon of praise to her boss, which came amid a veritable frenzy of Pell-bashing tweets by Ms Milligan following the 7 April High Court verdict, is a case in point: in Aussie-speak it can best be described as "brown nosing", and one of the co-presenters of ABC's breakfast news show gets into the act.  Odiously, and arrogantly, the ABC (like the BBC) handles complaints about itself in-house, and one result was Paul Barry's contemptuously conceived and delivered riposte to its critics concerning the Pell Case, as excoriated here by Andrew Bolt. To quote briefly from Bolt's column in the Melbourne Herald-Sun of 11 April denouncing the ABC's "stunning denialism" (ABC Denies its Pell Witchhunt, Then Proves It):
Can anyone believe the ABC's claim that it didn't vilify the innocent George Pell and help hound him into jail? The ABC should be ashamed, humiliated, repentant and begging for forgiveness for its starring role in the vilification, destruction and jailing of an innocent man.... Not one single ABC presenter or reporter at any time pointed out that the many allegations the ABC aired against Pell were inherently implausible - in fact, some impossible. Not one. ABC staff instead routinely treated them as not just credible, but often true.In fact, the ABC united behind ABC reporter Louise Milligan as she peddled allegations against Pell that were so weak that every one of them - like the ones she devoted an entire 7.30 report to - was either dropped by prosecutors or now overturned by the High Court. But not before Pell spent 405 days in jail....'
One of the bloggers and journalists who has done laudable service in the cause of showing that Pell could not have committed the heinous crimes for which he was convicted is Dr Chris Friel.  No rightwinger, he. In a very recent piece that highlights the anti-Pell tweets of a certain unidentifiable person called Lyndsay Farlow and which demonstrates the ABC's despicable role in Pell's persecution, Dr Friel explains that before he became interested in securing justice for Pell he investigated the role of pro-Israel "hawks" in casting Jeremy Corbyn as an antisemite.  A footnote to his article claims:
'This mirrors the antisemitism crisis in which a significant minority of Corbyn supporters are Jewish (and who are therefore deemed anti-Semitic!) a fact that the mainstream have difficulty acknowledging."
 Inter alia, in the main text:
 'Let's now turn to the ABC. The organisation would no doubt espouse values of fairness to all including Catholics, and aspire to treat controversial topics such as sex abuse and redress even-handedly. Insofar as my analysis of Farlow would be accepted, I am sure that the ABC would repudiate the idea that Farlow's concerns are that of the state broadcaster. Even if Farlow "hunts witches" the ABC does not.
Here it may be worth offering a general description of the likes of Farlow (or CLAN), namely, that they are "hawkish." A typical hawk is both polarised and polarising. Hawks will have a particular, single focus and view everything through that lens. They will then divide the world into friends and enemies accordingly, sometimes mirroring the equal and opposite pole.
The example that I spent a year studying in fine detail before I ever wrote on Pell was the "grass roots Zionist hawks" that agitate for Israel having a special concern to ward off the threat of boycotts. No doubt pro-Palestinian pressure groups exist that mirror such hawks, but from my experience it is the pro-Israel faction that is especially well-funded and organised. Although quasi-autonomous from the state of Israel, such groups will be well briefed (winning the information war is compared to winning the skies in military warfare) and also (covertly) funded by Israel as indicated by the exposure of Shai Masot delivering £1,000,000 to Joan Ryan MP to discredit her leader Jeremy Corbyn. It was my impression that the shrill, unreasonable, and abusive "group-think" ("group speech"?) of the redress-for-abuse hawks was astonishingly similar to the pro-Israel-anti-boycotts hawks.
Now, just as the BBC would officially distance itself from the pro-Israel hawks, in reality they and the mainstream tend to treat them uncritically, not least because the hawks can and do provide kompromat. In the case of Jeremy Corbyn, an MP on the fringes who was surprisingly victorious in the 2015 Labour leadership (after changes to the voting system that gave power to his grass roots), it was the hawks who had already been collecting information on him regarding his Palestinian Rights activity since 2010 well before he was prominent that supplied the data to the mainstream. This was then distorted and reproduced amidst artificial hysteria at a time of acute tension in Israel and after Corbyn had done surprisingly well in the 2017 election and might well progress further.
In other words, the hawks act like a "ginger group." Their aim is always to "ginger up" (agitate, enliven, stimulate) the mainstream. To repeat, hawks are not merely polarised but they are polarising, agitating to normalise an extreme agenda. I would argue that this is what we see with Pell and the Australian mainstream.
In the case of the ABC, with reporter Louise Milligan especially, it seems that the hawks have infiltrated the state broadcaster, something that was no doubt made easy given that many in the ABC loathe Pell's Conservative social values (on gender issues such as abortion and gay rights, but also climate change).' [Footnote numbers in original have been omitted here]
While praising Dr Friel for his support of the cardinal, I can't but regret Dr Friel's comments about Corbyn and Zionists.  I mean, "Zionist hawks" have infiltrated the BBC? Seriously?!

The ABC and the BBC are very much birds of a feather. 

In the interview that he gave to Andrew Bolt on 14 April, Cardinal Pell quite justifiably observed that "the culture wars are real".  He cited the determination that the militant left has to divest western civilisation of the Judeo-Christian foundations on which it rests.

He is quite correct of course. And complicit in this determination are leftists who infest the news rooms of both ABC and BBC, as well as sections of academia.

As Pell's longtime friend, the distinguished American Catholic scholar Dr George Weigel has remarked, in his capacity as a member of the Friends of Israel Initiative,
 ".... Israel, which has a clear right to self-defense, is beset today by a unique combination of threats: it must defend its people from attack while defending its very right to exist. No other state in the world faces this dual challenge. To deny Israel’s right to confront some of the world’s most vicious terrorist groups in order to ensure the safety of its citizens is to corrode international norms from within”a process that is already well-advanced at the United Nations, to that organization’s shame.
The assault on Israel is one part of a more general assault on the West, on democracy, and on the moral and culture heritage that grew from the fruitful interaction of Jerusalem, Athens, and Rome. One especially threatening part of this assault is the effort to use human rights claims and claims of universal criminal jurisdiction as weapons against Israeli democracy. Should these efforts succeed, similar efforts will certainly be turned against other western democracies.
Peace in the Middle East, to which all of us are firmly committed, is not a matter of Israel-and-the-Palestinians only. Responsible Israelis and responsible Palestinians both know that there will be no peace in the Middle East absent a pan-Arab recognition of Israel’s sovereign legitimacy.
Israel and the West are both confronted with two particularly grave threats in the early twenty-first century: the threat of Islamist jihadism, which has already caused enormous suffering while altering patterns of daily life throughout the world, and the threat of a nuclear-armed Iran, led by men who believe that a new holocaust of the Jews will hasten the advent of the messianic age. Israel must not be put into a position of facing these threats alone. Those in the West who do not understand this should ponder the lessons of the late 1930s more carefully.
The campaign of delegitimation against Israel includes aspects of that anti-Semitism that has fouled parts of western culture for centuries and that must be forthrightly condemned by all who share the moral values of the Judaeo-Christian tradition...."
 (See the rest of Dr Weigel's relevant remarks here)

And see an example of a naive and foolish Catholic priest in the Australian Catholic Church's ancestral Ireland here

Wednesday 6 May 2020

"The Greatest Story Never Told"

For those who haven't read her book, here's a video by the highly articulate Lyn Julius, co-founder of Harif, on Jews in the Arab Lands, their contributions and persecution.

To quote the uploader,  J-TV:
'When the world speaks of Middle Eastern refugees, it means Palestinian Arab refugees. The truth is that there were more Jews displaced from Arab countries since 1948 than Palestinians from Israel (856,000, as against 711,000, according to UN figures). Some people call the Jewish Exodus The Greatest Story never told. Meet Lyn Julius, author of "Uprooted: How 3,000 years of Jewish civilisation in the Arab world vanished overnight".'

Monday 4 May 2020

David Singer: UN Special Rapporteur incites Hatred towards the Jewish People

Here's the latest article by Sydney lawyer and international affairs analyst David Singer.

He writes:

Michael Lynk – UN Human Rights Council Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian Territory occupied since 1967 – has issued an explosive anti-Jewish statement that fails to acknowledge the Jewish People have any vested legal and human rights claims to reconstitute the Jewish National Home in Judea and Samaria.

Lynk’s statement is the latest in a steadily-growing outpouring of hatred towards the Jewish People that could lead to violence between Jews and Arabs as the 1 July date of destiny approaches for restoring Jewish sovereignty in about 30% of Judea and Samaria after 3000 years.

Couched entirely in the language of the enemies of the Jewish People, Lynk uses the terms:
  • “annexation” instead of “restoring Jewish sovereignty”
  • “West Bank” instead of “Judea and Samaria”
Lynk lays the groundwork for inflaming violent Arab responses with this highly-exaggerated claim:
“Israel’s decision to unilaterally march ahead with the planned annexation on July 1 undermines human rights in the region, and would be a severe body blow to the rules-based international order”
Israeli sovereignty will be applied in about 1697 km2 (i.e. square kilometers) – approximating 30% of Judea and Samaria -where 65000 Arabs – 4% of Judea and Samaria’s Arab population – live.   

Lynk then misleadingly states:
“It would also further undermine any remaining prospect for a just and negotiated settlement”

Sovereignty in the remaining 70% – 3958 km2 – home for 96% of Judea and Samaria’s Arab population – will be allocated in direct Israeli-Arab negotiations.

Lynk continues:
“If Israel’s annexation plans proceed, what would be left of the West Bank would become a Palestinian Bantustan, an archipelago of disconnected islands of territory, completely surrounded and divided up by Israel and unconnected to the outside world”
Lynk makes this sensational claim without having seen the actual joint US-Israel Mapping Committee proposals.

Certain to inflame Arab passions is Lynk’s assertion:
“The plan would crystalize a 21st century apartheid, leaving in its wake the demise of the Palestinians’ right to self-determination. Legally, morally, politically, this is entirely unacceptable.”
The 65000 Arab residents affected will acquire Israeli residency rights.

Lynk’s claim that “apartheid” will be the outcome of Israel’s decision is outrageous.

Lynk’s use of the term “annexation” throughout his statement becomes clear as he continues his diatribe:
“Annexation has been strictly prohibited under international law since the adoption of the Charter of the United Nations in 1945. Drawing from the bitter lessons of two world wars fought within a generation, the international community outlawed annexation because it generates conflict, vast human suffering, political instability, economic ruin and systemic discrimination.”
Israel’s decision does not involve “annexation” but “restoring Jewish sovereignty in Judea and Samaria” in accordance with the following legal authorizations:
  • San Remo Resolution 1920
  • Treaty of Sevres 1920
  • League of Nations Mandate for Palestine 1922
  • Article 80 UN Charter
Lynk’s annexation-phobia continues unabated:
“The looming annexation is a political litmus test for the international community. This annexation will not be reversed through rebukes, nor will the 53-year-old occupation die of old age”
Lynk concludes:
“As I stated in March, the international community should review its extensive menu of sanctions and countermeasures to stem this march towards further illegality. Settlement products should not enter the international marketplace. Agreements, existing and proposed, with Israel should be reviewed.”
There is no illegality – only legality heaped on legality.

The 30% of Judea and Samaria to become part of Israel is the Jewish People’s biblical and ancestral heartland. Lynk’s attempt to erase its Jewish patrimony is disgraceful.
Lynk’s refusal to acknowledge Jewish claims in Judea and Samaria smacks of unadulterated Jew-hatred, will incite violence against Jews and should be roundly condemned.

Author’s note: The cartoon – commissioned exclusively for this article   is by Yaakov Kirschen aka “Dry Bones” one of Israel’s foremost political and social commentators – whose cartoons have graced the columns of Israeli and international media publications for decades. His cartoons can be viewed at Drybonesblog

Friday 1 May 2020

Dissing Israel from the Diaspora

They really should make aliya, and vote in Israeli elections and sound off to their hearts' content, those Diaspora Jews whose "lines", to quote the Bible, "have fallen in pleasant places", and criticise the little Jewish State from comfort and safety.  I put among this number the Aussies who have of late fallen for the propaganda of the New Israel Fund, a number that, I'm sorry to say, includes representatives of a large congregation whose pst rabbis were renowned for their robust love of Zion, and whose love was infectious.

Wouldst that we will see their like again.

In 2010, not long after I started blogging, I drew readers' attention to shameful remarks regarding Israel by Sir Mick Davis, head of Anglo-Jewry's plutocratic non-elected "Jewish Leadership Council".

In his regular column in the Jerusalem Post, world-renowned Jewish leader Isi Leibler, who had some years earlier made aliya from Australia, trenchantly denounced Davis, observing inter alia:
"Mick Davis, the South African-born chief executive of the powerful mining group Xstrata, is chairman of Anglo Jewry’s United Jewish Israel Appeal (UJIA) – the principal fund-raising institution for Israel of the UK Jewish community.
He also heads a body known as the Jewish Leadership Council (JLC) – essentially comprised of a group of wealthy British Jews and their acolytes who, by virtue of their financial largesse, assume a dominant influence on many levels of communal life. The power represented by their collective wealth enables them not to be accountable to anyone and few would dare question their policies....
.... Resident in London, he had the chutzpa to berate the Israeli prime minister “for lacking the courage to take the steps” to advance the peace process, arguing that “I don’t understand the lack of strategy in Israel.” He also employed the terminology of our enemies, predicting an “apartheid state” unless Israel was able to achieve a two-state solution – unashamedly blaming Israelis rather than Palestinians for being the obstacle to peace.
His sheer arrogance was best demonstrated in his most outrageous remark: “I think the government of Israel has to recognize that their actions directly impact on me as a Jew living in London, UK. When they do good things, it is good for me; when they do bad things, it is bad for me. And the impact on me is as significant as it is on Jews living in Israel... I want them to recognize that.”
Aside from implying that Israel is responsible for the anti-Semitism he is encountering, Davis is effectively warning that when considering defense issues which may have life-or-death implications for Israelis, the government must be sure not to create problems for him in his non- Jewish social circles. From his London mansion, he blithely brushes aside suicide bombers, rockets launched against our children and the threat of nuclear annihilation because his gentile friends might complain about the behavior of his Israeli friends...."
Other critics of Davis's stance included the indefatigable Melanie Phillips, in a Spectator column no longer reachable online, and Emanuele Ottolenghi, a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies in Washington, who opined:
"As the saying goes, you should practice what you preach – not what emerged from the recent panel discussion between Peter Beinart, former editor of the US liberal weekly the New Republic and recent heir to the late Tony Judt’s critique of Zionism, Guardian columnist Jonathan Freedland, and Mick Davis, chairman of the Jewish Leadership Council.
Davis lamented the existence of a supposed conformism among Jewish community leaders when it comes to voicing criticism of Israel in the open and called for more frank introspection – but the panel failed to make room for dissenting views, offering instead a harmonious choir of opinionated liberal conformism....Davis is upset because Israel’s actions have an impact on Diaspora Jewry – so are most Diaspora Jews by the way, because nobody likes to see police patrolling Jewish institutions across Europe. But most Jews would blame anti-Semites for distorting Israel’s actions and then using them as a pretext, rather than blaming Israel for their own discomfort.
Regardless of whether you approve or disapprove of Israel’s actions, it comes down to this. Do you blame the rape victim for wearing a miniskirt or do you blame the rapist? Most sane people know the answer – there is no excuse for rape.
And then there’s Davis, who, if logic follows (and it does not necessarily always do), should blame the rape victim and advocate more modest dressing.
This kind of logic sits at the helm of Anglo-Jewry today – something that should concern us infinitely more than the impact of Israel’s actions on Jewish comfort levels in Great Britain or the extent to which we allow ourselves to criticise Israel’s actions."

Regrettably, Sir Mick is at it again, as the front page of the London giveaway paper the Jewish News indicates.  Lyn Julius, who runs the admirable Point of No Return blog, has made a pertinent social media post about one aspect of his criticism:

Read more in this blog by Jonathan Hoffman, who was given an honorable mention by Isi Leibler in the aforementioned column as one of the few Anglo-Jewish leaders brave enough to decry Sir Mick's 2010 remarks.