Tag Archives: demonise

Israel, Ha’aretz and the ICC – lest we forget.

Mohammed Wattad’s Jan 2015 impassioned appeal to Ha’aretz readers states that: “In principle, nothing is wrong about {PA} joining the ICC. If they are serious about their commitment to international law, all countries must sign and also ratify the Rome Statute, [emphasis mine] which paves the way in that process. International law is not an open buffet of “pick and choose.” The ICC is the direct outcome of World War II and the Nuremberg trials.” Very laudable.

What Wattad omits to remind the reader is that the ICC is an outcome of the 1998 UNITED NATIONS “Conference of Plenipotentiaries on the Establishment of an International Criminal Court”, where the UN ADOPTED the Rome Statute, blessing the operations of the International Criminal Court.

The issue at hand, of course, is not Israel’s refusal to be a signatory to the staute, but the reasons behind it.

Those reasons are demonstrated, documented and increasingly biased UN behaviour over the past 50 years; 1965 to 2015.

Specifically, Wattad does not mention the UN Arab and African anti-Israel ethnoracist bloc of “automatic majority third world member states” and their ongoing sabotage of the UN itself, thru organisations like the ICC,HRW and UNHCR. By funding and endorsing groups like those and through adopting/adapting that same international law Wattad champions, what concerns Israel regarding the Rome Statute is that that same UN has never seen fit to bring to trial leaders of murderous racist ethnoreligious states like North Korea, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Russia, China, Cuba, Nigeria or any other of the world’s great tyrannies.

As a sample of why Israel is leery of the ICC and other UN organistaion, we need merely look at Special Raporteur to the UN from 2001 -2007, South African John Dugard. Dugrad’s brief (unbelievably) was to investigate only violations by Israel. This one-sided duty John Dugard has zealously embraced since his appointment to the post and he was followed with equal zeal by Richard Falk. Dugard’s reports in particular stand out, even by UN standards, for their virulently anti-Israel prejudice because Dugard systematically ignored Palestinian acts of terror, their breaches of international human rights law and international law itself in its pursuit of destroying the Jewish state.

On another tack, UNHCR High Commisioner for Human Rights,Navi Pillay, another South African, has a long track record of demonizing Israel. High Commissioner between 2008-2014, in 2014, Pillay accused Israel of committing war crimes by not doing enough to protect civilians in the Hamas initiated Gaza war. And it was UNHCR’s Pillay who was behind the infamous and totally discredited Goldstone Report of 2009, which accused Israel of deliberately targeting Gazan civilians — a finding that the report’s author, Richard Goldstone, later retracted, although Pillay did not.

For UN employees like Dugard, Falk and Pillay, the 20th century job description of the United Nations “to maintain international peace and security” based on “the sovereign equality of all its members,” and to do “nothing [to] impair the inherent right of self-defense if an armed attack occurs against a member of the UN” does not seem to apply.

This because, under pressure from MENA and OIC, the UN of the 21st century has an exception clause. Every time Israel is attacked, not only does the UN fail to maintain peace and security – it attempts to gut Israel’s inherent right of self-defense.

In an article for the Gatestone Institute in 2014, Anne Bayefsky makes the point that “In accordance with this pathology, UN actors manufacture a cycle of violence that begins with Israeli aggression; assert a moral equivalence between Arab terrorists and their Israeli victims; and concoct a litany of Israeli human rights abuses. They conclude that Israeli actions in self-defense are crimes, and Israel’s enemies are understandably…protecting [their] human rights.”

Wattad, apart from failing to acknowledge documented general UN anti-israel bias, also fails to acknowledge that the UN itself is a changed organisation. When it was founded in 1945, it had 51 members, and was created to prevent the sort of mass horrors Jews and other minorities had faced in 1930s Europe. The United Nations was created precisely to “…take effective collective measures for the prevention and removal of threats to the peace…for the suppression of acts of aggression or other breaches of the peace, to… [ensure] conformity with the principles of justice and international law and to develop friendly relations among nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples…”

Thus, the United Nations legally created the state of Israel in 1947 to implement the purposes of the League of Nations Mandate for Palestine in accordance with their 1945 San Francisco Charter and their legal stated purposes and principles.

In 1945, only ten UN members were non-Western states, and the UN was driven by Western values. Today, there are 193 member states. Seventy two of those are (in rough terms) non-Western, and 56 of those are member states of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). All of the OIC states are vehemently anti-Israel, and more than one has, at some point, actually engaged in wars with Israel, or supplied money and arms to Israel’s terrorist enemies, or advanced media lies against Israel and the West, or taught its populations hatred for Jews and Israel, or opposed democratic rights for its citizens.

Wattad does not mention that the purposeful introduction of so many Muslim states from Africa, Asia, and the Middle East has warped the manner in which the United Nations today reaches its decisions and conducts its affairs. There is now a broad swathe of states that push an agenda of “post-colonialism,” “anti-Western-‘imperialism,'” and hostility to liberal democracies and the original human rights agenda of the UN.

Many of these states are dictatorships like Iran, Syria, China, or Sudan, and many that are far from being democracies in any sense of the word.

The Islamic OIC organised bloc of fifty-six states has waged a steady campaign in key UN bodies to gut anti-Semitism of its meaning, by making the absurd argument that the term also refers to hatred against Arabs and Muslims. This is glib and misleading distortion of language and meaning designed to prevent the UN from coherently expressing sympathy for Jews as victims, and to create a form of immunity for Arab and Islamic states accused of fostering anti-Semitism.

Additionally, Wattad ignores the annual onslaught of one-sided UN resolutions in the General Assembly and the Human Rights Council that contribute—whether by intent or in their effect—to an atmosphere that demonizes the Jewish state and promotes hostility toward Jews as a whole. In the past year at the General Assembly, only a handful of countries were criticized, in no case by more than one resolution.

Israel, by contrast, was targeted in no less than twenty-two resolutions, all of them one-sided. Worse, in 2006-07, the Human Rights Council passed one hundred percent of its condemnatory resolutions against Israel, ignoring the other 191 UN member states, including the world’s worst abusers.

As further proof of the increasing biased dysfunction of another UN supported body, the UNHRC, is controlled by African and Middle Eastern countries, and is supported by China, Russia and Cuba.
Currently, members include (each with a three-year term) 13 African states, 13 Asia-Pacific states, 8 Latin American and Caribbean states, and 8 Western European and other states (the “other” being the United States). Of the thirteen African states, two (Burkina Faso and Sierra Leone) have large majority Muslim populations, and two (Côte d’Ivoire and Ethiopia) have large Muslim minorities.
Of the thirteen Asia-Pacific states, seven are fully Muslim entities. It has condemned Israel a total of 50 times between the time it was formed in 2006 and end 2014.

The OIC has even made efforts in the UN to have the Cairo Declaration (and, through it, sharia law) be officially adopted by the UNHRC.

Beginning in the late 1960’s, the full weight of the UN was gradually but deliberately turned against the country it had conceived, by General Assembly resolution, a mere two decades earlier. The campaign to demonize and delegitimize Israel in every UN and international forum was initiated by the Arab states together with the Soviet Union which was nervous of American influence in the warm water ports it cherished for itself, and supported by what has become known as an “automatic majority” of Third World member states.

Wattad omits the backstory of the UN endorsed ICC, which thru its committees, annual UN resolutions, an entire UN bureaucratic division, permanent UN exhibits in New York and Geneva headquarters – are all dedicated to a relentless and virulent propaganda war against the Jewish state.

Together, they have made the UN into Ground Zero for today’s new anti-Semitism, which is the irrational scapegoating of Israel with the true intended target being Jews.

The Arab backed campaign of scapegoating Jews and Israel reached new strength in wake of the Arab oil embargo of 1973. Many African states were pressured into severing relations with Israel. In 1975, following a steady drumbeat of UN-endorsed anti-Israel Muslim-bloc instigated declarations were pushed through. This included organisations like the International Women’s Year Conference in Mexico, the Organization of African Unity, and the majority of the General Assembly itself which, influenced by OIC manoeuvrings actually adopted the “Zionism is Racism” resolution, later repealed for the blatant racist resolution it was.

The virulent anti-Israel apparatus within the UN, therefore, is of considerable magnitude, and cripples the even-handed functioning of the organization.

Currently, no fewer than three UN entities exist that are dedicated to furtherance of the Palestinian cause (which is, in its simplest form, dedicated to destroying Israel). There are no UN entities to advance the Israeli cause, which has always been eager to make peace with its neighbours and to help its citizens – Jews, Christians and Muslims — build good lives for themselves.

So, in response to the brief above, one can now say that never in history has a human institution for goodwill and peace among men been so betrayed by those who seek to use it for their own ethnoreligious hatreds.

It is true that Israel is not signatory to the Rome Statute of 1998. The discerning reader will begin to see why…..

Mohammed Wattad cheerfully states in his opening paragraph that “…International law is not an open buffet of “pick and choose.”…”. He doesn’t realise how right he is, and how the UN, corrupted by the MENA OIC bloc today does exactly that in its peremptory, biased ways.

Mohammed Wattad and Ha’aretz have either forgotten about the value of true journalism or are writing for sheeple.

Shalom Dublin?? – viewing Irish anti-Israeli sentiment through the lens of the IRA’s former Nazi collaboration

I write this blog to layout for myself, the antecedents to what many puzzled Israelis and Jews see as an uncalled-for Irish antipathy to the Jewish state, and to say again that peace will only come when the current pro-Palestinian orthodoxy and exhortation to violence and martyrdom is challenged everywhere and always. I hope you find it of interest.                   (h/t: @clairefinn54)

Israel has been demonized by an Irish media slavishly dancing to the Palestinian drumbeat for decades… – [yet] Israel has a far better and more progressive record on human rights than any of its neighbors…The truth must be told.” Fine Gael chairman Charlie Flanagan., 2014.

In his article “Why Are the Irish Increasingly Siding With Palestine Over Israel?” written for the New Republic in May 2014, Jason Walsh recounts the time he wrote a feature article for the Irish Times on Ireland’s Jewry. He interviewed retired Belfast businessman Adrian Levey, who is Jewish. Levey was “…keen to point out that anti-Semitism as such is not a problem, even on the divided streets of Belfast.
“Northern Protestants support Israel and Catholics support Palestine, it doesn’t really play out on the streets,” he said.
When you understand that Protestant and Catholic are not actually religious terms, but stand-ins for pro-British unionists and pro-Irish republicans the statement makes perfect sense. For Irish republicans have long felt they were, as much as Palestinians, living in occupied territory. Hearing Northern Ireland described as the “Occupied Six Counties” was not uncommon in my youth during the 1990s. “

What Walsh is saying is embedded in an Irish take on the colonial antecedents of Ireland, Israel, and a would-be “Palestinian” Muslim state.

He explains that Israel’s struggle against the British during the Mandate years resonated with an Irish (Roman Catholic) public subjugated for centuries by brutal British domination of their national aspirations and what they called “colonisation” and “occupation” of the six Counties which make up (Protestant) Northern Ireland today.

But as Israel became more successful, the Irish psyche projected its experience of (essentially Protestant) Britain onto Israel’s failure to decide the “Palestinian” question definitively, and the narrative of a “dispossessed” and “disenfranchised” “Palestinian” struggle for “freedom” blossomed. Israel thus began to function as a surrogate for Britain because it was too “imperial, imperious and, above all, modern.” This view, together with Brian Hanley’s exploration of the IRA’s collaboration with Nazi Germany in the Republic’s struggles against Britain form the core of this piece.

The ongoing support and collaboration between Hamas and Sinn Fein, Irish Republic politicians and the Palestinian Authority, and historical ideological and notional links between the PLO, Arafat and the Republic of Ireland are well documented, if not always in the public eye.

Certainly the links between the IRA and Arafat’s PLO have been well documented. This connection is due to historic circumstance, where the British were wrongly perceived as pro-Jewish. And this affinity went north of the border with Northern Ireland and infused the culture and politics of both the Republic of Ireland and the positions held by the IRA in Northern Ireland and its political wing Sinn Fein.

Sinn Fein, the IRA’s political wing, which has elected representatives in the Irish and British parliaments and shares power in Northern Ireland, has continued to be a virulent critic of Israel. In 2006, Aengus Ó Snodaigh, then the party’s international affairs and human rights spokesperson in the Dublin parliament, described Israel as “one of the most abhorrent and despicable regimes on the planet.” In May 2014, he was one of three Irish politicians prevented by authorities from leaving Cyprus to join the Gaza-bound flotilla headed by the Mavi Marmara….

Arthur Griffith, who founded the original Sinn Fein movement in 1905, used the pages of his newspaper to rail against “Jew Swindledom” (9/10ths of all Jews were, he proclaimed, “usurers and parasites“) and the Dreyfusards.

There were similar prejudices commonplace in all the political parties which broke off from his organization, but only the eponymous rump which remained after the splits of 1921 and 1926 habitually preached Jew-hatred, culminating in a demand for an Irish-German alliance in 1939.

The newly formed “new” IRA, itself soaked in anti-Semitism, took a similar view and attempted to forge, as we will see, a working relationship with the Germans.

As noted in the republican newspaper The United Irishman of October 1951, Seán Russell, the then IRA chief of staff and a registered representative of the Irish Republic, spent the summer of 1940 in a ‘very large’ villa in the leafy Grunewald, near Berlin, surrounded by extensive grounds and parks, enjoying all the privileges of a diplomat with regard to access to food, petrol and other rationed goods.

Russell met leading Nazis such as Nazi Foreign Minister Ribbentrop. Following the fall of France, Russell urged that the German high command make use of the IRA to strike at British forces in Northern Ireland as part of a general attack on Britain. His plans were accepted and incorporated into Operation Sealion (the plan for the invasion of Britain) as a mark of the ‘respect and esteem’ in which Russell was held by the German military leadership.

The IRA’s main publication, War News, became increasingly pro-Nazi in tone, but more worryingly, it began to ape anti-Semitic arguments. The paper expressed satisfaction that the ‘cleansing fire’ of the German armies was driving the Jews from Europe. British war minister Hore Belisha was described as a ‘wealthy Jew’ only interested in ‘profits’. War News condemned the arrival in Ireland of ‘so-called Jewish refugees’.

Even though pre-war Ireland was united in its dislike of the British, there were at least four discernible factions in the IRA.

The majority leadership grouping was sympathetic to social radicalism but primarily concerned with developing the IRA as a military force. An important section of the leadership was socialist, while a third section—of which Russell was probably the best example—were committed entirely to armed force and uninterested in political debate.

A fourth smaller group was attracted to Sinn Féin’s espousal of right-wing ‘Christian social’ policies even as further differences existed over the relationship between the IRA in Northern Ireland and its much larger and more influential southern counterpart.

Much of the northern IRA together with Sinn Fein, their political arm, were attracted to Russell’s position, because they felt marginalised and ignored by their southern comrades, even as Russell’s own isolation in, and disillusionment with, the Republic led him to forge now-embarrassing ties with the Nazis.

Putting the efforts of IRA leaders like Russell into context, Brian Hanley notes that “…the IRA in 1940 was under severe pressure and in decline. Hundreds of its members were jailed or interned in the Curragh camp. Undoubtedly a measure of desperation contributed to its thinking. Similarly, …much of what was written in the [War News] was fantasy, especially the claims that the IRA was playing a major role in the German war effort….Furthermore, War News was illegal and therefore written and distributed surreptitiously. [Only a] small number of people were responsible for its content and only a few IRA members could have had any input into it. Despite the violence of some of the anti-Jewish rhetoric in War News the IRA did not attempt to physically attack Irish Jews.”

Even so, with the partition of Ireland by the British into the (Catholic) Republic of Ireland and (largely Protestant Ulster ‘Loyalist’) Northern Ireland in 1921, the Provisional IRA and Sinn Fein in Northern Ireland imported a deep hostility towards partition as a solution to territorial conflict.

This in turn led to consistent support for the Palestinian cause some fifty years later. The “Provos” received weapons and training from Arafat’s PLO around the early 1970s; today, the IRA allegedly provides sophisticated bomb-making materials and know-how to terror group Hamas in war-ravaged Gaza.

And so, because the Irish Republican Army and Sinn Fein made common anti-colonialist cause with the Palestinian Liberation Organization, with the PLO allegedly providing arms and training for the IRA as early as the 1970s, Irish Protestant leaders, for their part, allied themselves with the Israelis and their struggle against a genocidal Muslim enemy.

Ironically, in March 1945, a correspondent for The Bell, a leading Irish magazine, raged about current events in Mandated Palestine: “Never let it be forgotten that the Irish people … have experienced all that the Jewish people in Palestine are suffering from the trained ‘thugs’ ‘gunning tarzans’ and British ‘terrorists’ that the Mandatory power have imposed upon the country.

But once the Zionist movement accepted the partition of Palestine, the Irish began to draw unflattering parallels between Israeli policies and their own divided existence.

To many, the Jewish state now looked less like a besieged religious-national community struggling valiantly for its natural rights and more like a colony illegitimately established by British force of arms and intent on imposing itself on an “indigenous” population.

As a result, Ireland only extended de jure recognition to Israel in 1963, 15 years after its declaration of independence.

After Ireland joined the European Union in 1973, successive governments in Dublin took the lead in championing the Palestinian cause within Europe.

In February 1980, Ireland was the first EU member to call for the establishment of a Palestinian state. It was also the last to allow Israel to open a residential embassy, in December 1993.

Throughout the Oslo Accords era and the post-Oslo era a decade later, Irish governments continued to provide the Palestinian cause with valuable, if not unlimited, support.

Thus, in June 2003, Brian Cowen, then Ireland’s foreign minister, visited Yasir Arafat during the height of the Second Intifada.

It was during the Second Intifada that 887 (78%) of the 1,137 Israelis killed in Arab terrorist attacks from September 2000 – 2005 were civilian casualties. Another 8,341 Israelis were wounded during this period, of which 5,676 were civilians while 2,665 were security forces.

The majority of Jewish casualties during Cowen’s visit and lauding of Arafat were caused by suicide bombings, bombs, shootings, stonings, stabbings, lynchings, rockets on civilian population centres, and other methods of attack.

And, inexplicably, Cowen spoke for many in Ireland when he described Arafat as “the symbol of the hope of self-determination of the Palestinian people” and praised him for his “outstanding work … tenacity, and persistence.”

This feting and legitimising of terror and destruction still continues in an unbroken line and the words of Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams who, in 1983, laid down a blueprint which remains the playbook for the PA and Hamas in the international arena.

Back in a May 1983 interview with Britain’s Sunday Times, Adams’ stated aim was “…to confront the British with an ongoing armed struggle which is enjoying popular support and a principled political party which refuses to compromise on the basic issue of British involvement in Northern Ireland.”

The aim of such a policy of confrontation, he added, was so that the British “…would be unable to govern.”

Thus, as Adams put it, the political role of Sinn Fein was merely to “broaden and popularise the struggle. For in the end the movement will have to depend on whatever armed pressure the IRA can bring.

If that sounds eerily familiar today, it is only because, if Hamas/PA is substituted for IRA, we have a copybook re-enactment of Sinn Fein strategy being perniciously played out by Hamas against Israel forty years later.

The parallels with the actions of Hamas are too striking to be ignored: continued confrontation, no negotiations, active endangering of civilian populations, an internationally supported political wing in Ramallah and no compromise on borders or choice of capital.

This ongoing tacit Irish apologism for Palestinian wrongdoing, together with a disdainful disregard of the Jews’ unbroken connection with the country going back to one thousand years before the Arab conquest of an indigenous Jewish peoples and land, is an inversion of Orwellian proportions, the scale of which the British author himself did not envision.

It is, therefore, this peculiar Irish post-colonialist pathology which continues to nurture to a recurrent Arab psychology of intransigence, intolerance and a refusal to take responsibility for actions, which lethally endanger a new generation of Jew and Arab alike.

And, as with all dictatorships of the mind, distrust and fear of other feed periodic outbursts of pointless, near gratuitous, violence.

In Belfast in 2014, upon his arrest for alleged involvement in the grisly 1972 IRA murder of widowed mother of ten, Jean McConville, Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams said “….I have never disassociated myself from the IRA and I never will…”

In Israel in 2014, Jews today continue to pay the price, through murder and wanton destruction, for a frightening foreign ideology of hate and segregation whose time we thought had long passed.

5 Reasons Why New York Times Editorial Today Is An Embarrassment To Journalism

5 Reasons Why New York Times Editorial Today Is An Embarrassment To Journalism

by Ambassador Ron Dermer

1.The New York Times writes that “after days of near silence,” Prime Minister Netanyahu condemned the murder of a Palestinian teenager on Sunday. But Netanyahu called the murder “reprehensible” on Wednesday, the day it occurred, and the next day, in his first public appearance since the murder, again forcefully condemned the killing on prime-time national television. Early July 4th weekend for the entire New York Times editorial board?
2.The New York Times omits that Prime Minister Netanyahu called the father of the murdered boy yesterday to personally express his outrage and condemnation. Maybe the New York Times didn’t get that press release?
3.The New York Times gives numerous examples of hate rhetoric on the margins of Israeli society – rhetoric that has been strongly condemned and rejected by Israel’s political leaders. The New York Times writes Palestinians have also been guilty of hate speech, but neglects to mention that Palestinian incitement is government backed, that Palestinian Authority leaders hail terrorists as heroes, name public squares after them and teach schoolchildren to emulate them. For daily dose of government-backed Palestinian incitement, check out – Palestinian Media Watch. No summer interns in the New York Times research department this year?
4.The New York Times omits the seemingly relevant matter of President Abbas forging a unity pact with Hamas, a terror organization whose charter calls for the murder of all Jews and whose leadership celebrated the kidnapping and murder of the three Israeli teens and called for more kidnappings. News not fit to print?
5. The New York Times fails to mention that a million Israelis were in bomb shelters yesterday as 100 rockets were fired at our civilian population. Maybe the New York Times editorial board will download to their smartphones Israel Red Alert, an app that sends an alert when and where a rocket is fired at Israel. It will only take 15 seconds to download, as much time as the people of Sderot and other Israeli towns in Southern Israel have to run for cover.

BDS and the crisis of Arab flexibility

All ideas in this synthesis remain the intellectual property of their rightful owners – thank you, you beautiful things…..

The current BDS campaign is yet another example of how financial blackmail of moneyed investors trumps morality. However, something like the Arab-backed BDS will never ultimately succeed because it is impossible to sell a lie to all of the people all of the time.

Just look at Israel’s new trading partners of India and China, as the Jewish state increasingly turns to traditional antagonists of Muslims and Islam.

India and China amount to a market of just over 2.4 billion reasons why Arab Muslim BDS will not, as Israel increasingly turns to Asia for trade, ultimately make a significant dent in its overall trade balance.

China, one of the world’s largest countries and the second biggest economy in the world, has invested billions of dollars in Israel in the last three years. Starting with the World Expo in 2010 in Shanghai where Israel had its own pavilion for the first time, China has shown the Arab world that it has targeted Israel and has plans for future investments as well. As a sampler, according to Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics, overall trading figures between Israel and China reached $8.4 billion in 2013, compared with $6.7 billion in 2010. There is no reason why this figure will not increase significantly as Israel slowly absorbs the full impact of Obama’s abandonment of formerly close allies in the Near and Middle East, and especially because Israel sees that in building even stronger alliances in Asia, it reduces significantly the leverage that Europe has had as Israel’s largest trading partner. Increased trade with Asia will reduce that one-sided, disproportionate leverage that Europe, at the mercy of Arab voting blocs and money, has traditionally enjoyed. Already, Asia is Israel’s second largest trading partner having already surpassed the United States in that statistic and, if the trend continues, is likely to challenge the European Union in a few years.

And if we take India, that other Asian powerhouse a little further south, new defence and trade deals as late as April 2014 are a harbinger of the accelerating competition for Israeli technology between the two Asian powerhouses. As an example, India has just recently contracted with Israeli companies for a monumental clean-up of the water of the sacred River Ganges!!……

At a pinch, the only water flowing out of BDS eyes would be tears of confused, malevolent frustration.

It may be, that we are witnessing the development of  new anti-Muslim blocs in new configurations as Europe begins to grapple with the early signs of a coming European intifada and countries which have  traditionally dealt with aggressive Islam find new ways to neutralise a re-surgent, oft-violent Islam.

But I digress.

To add to the headaches of the BDSers, there is the ongoing discreet trade between Israel and several Arab Muslim countries in addition to the open trade of Israeli goods to the “Palestinians”.
Israeli business quietly thrives in Saudi Arabia and Iraq, and in countries like Indonesia and Malaysia. Company owners on both sides do all they can to avoid harmful publicity. Contacts are made at international conferences overseas, through European and U.S. companies familiar with both sides, and directly over the Internet.

Arab entrepreneurs are interested in Israeli technologies and search them out through the Internet and social networks like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

For example, ships belonging to the Ofer Group docked in Iran. That was then. Today, trade continues covertly with Indonesia at the lowest possible profile though without diplomatic relations between the two countries. Singapore serves as a base for businessmen trying to penetrate there.

Clandestine trade is also carried out in the opposite direction. Indonesian business delegations visit Israel, too, but this is kept from the general public and Israel imports eight times as much as it exports in its trade with Indonesia.

A number of Israeli companies export products to Saudi Arabia, including technological goods. This is done through their U.S.-registered subsidiaries. As an example, Israel receives raw materials for its plastics industry – polyethylene and polypropylene deriving from petroleum production – from Saudi Arabia and other Gulf countries. These materials are sent in a roundabout way but Israeli authorities are aware of their source. Israel’s plastics industry, in turn, exports greenhouse sheeting, irrigation drippers, house and garden products, disposable utensils and food packaging back to Saudi Arabia. In addition, quite a few companies in the Gulf states rely on sophisticated Israeli technology for security purposes.

But what of Israel’s own Arabs? Can they not forge a bridgehead for Arab-world markets to circumvent the impact of both the Arab boycott and the BDS campaign?

Increasingly, indeed they do. As a result, many Israeli companies that rely on users elsewhere in the region find creative solutions to avoid being identified with Israel, such as opening branches in Ramallah or Jordan that can more easily interface with the Arab world.

Because being labelled an Israeli company does not help Israel, neither in marketing nor in promotion, if she wants to target the Middle East, Israeli entrepreneurs open branches of their companies in places like Ramallah and Amman. And as Arab entrepreneurial skills expand inside Israel, Israeli Arabs will play an increasingly important role in bridging the political impasse between Israel and the Arabs.

So, is BDS working? Yes it is. But mainly as an increasingly symbolic and fiscally irrelevant anti-semitic protest by the chattering classes who are unable/unwilling to think for themselves.
In hard financial terms however, continuing creative workarounds by Israel and her supporters around the world to counter the attempted economic strangulation of a sovereign state, ensure that Israel’s growing GDP relegates the Arab Muslim BDS campaign to yet another largely side-stepped symbolic Arab Muslim gesture of de-legitimisation; symbolic and concrete gestures which have failed since 1948.

In the meanwhile, international cultural mega-stars like Elton John, Justin Timberlake and the Rolling Stones will continue to play to packed and appreciative Israeli audiences.

In Israel.

May 5774 continue to be a successful one for all.

 

With Truth Over All Else

In the last few weeks, Australia and the Arabs in the West Bank of the Jordan River have been linked in hitherto not-seen ways.

Specifically, on May 10 the Murdoch owned national broadsheet, The Australian, published a piece about South Australian senator Nick Xenophon’s visit to Hebron in the West Bank of the Jordan River.

In the article, Xenophon is quoted as saying, “What I saw in Hebron was heartbreaking — the division, the segregation, the palpable fear in the community.”

Xenophon was invited by the Australian Friends of Palestine Association (in Adelaide) to tour the West Bank of the Jordan River.

The Australian Friends of Palestine Association promotes itself as a South Australia not-for-profit organisation which has as “…its main aim the promotion of peace and justice in Palestine based on International Law and the relevant UN resolutions.”

One of the ways that the Australian Friends of Palestine Association has promoted peace and justice in “Palestine” is through a recent boycott attempt of Israel’s internationally acclaimed Bat Sheva dance company.

While I remain confident that the Australian Friends of Palestine officials will be able to muster some sort of logical explanation as to how boycotting an Israeli dance company based in Tel Aviv will promote peace in “Palestine”, I will at the same time refrain from drawing any parallels between the close connection of the Australian Friends of Palestine and the local BDS movement which also championed the boycott and which has as its published aim, the de-legitimisation of a sovereign country and its demise as the sole Jewish state.

My concern, rather, is Mr Xenophon’s statement to The Australian where he “…would urge [Australian Liberal] Foreign Minister Julie Bishop and [Australian Labor] Opposition Leader Bill Shorten to have a good look at the International Court of Justice’s statement on Israeli settlements. The ICJ statement is crystal clear — all settlements are illegal under international law.”

Those who are familiar with Australian politics, and South Australian politics in particular, will know that Mr Xenophon is a caring human being, with a well-developed sense of justice who made his name as the “no-pokies” Minister of Parliament. May 2104 was his first ever visit to the Middle East.

To that extent, as a champion of the underdog and the under-represented, Mr Xenophon is entitled to his own opinion.

However, not even Mr Xenophon is entitled to his own facts.

Fortunately, Mr. Xenophon states that he is supportive of international law as it relates to Israeli settlements in an ostensibly “Palestinian” West Bank. This is as well, because under international law, all of the West Bank of the Jordan River was designated as a homeland of the Jews.

In this context, then, it is unusual that a South Australian senator who is allegedly supportive of aboriginal rights for aboriginal peoples in Australia can, on the one hand stand up for indigenous peoples’ land rights as morally and legally justifiable, yet decry those same land rights when those indigenous peoples are Jews.

This contextualising and understanding of those land rights, and legal codification of that understanding under international law, dates back to the San Remo Conference of 1920, that same conference which eventually led to the establishment of the generally mainly sunni Arab states of Jordan, Syria, Lebanon and Iraq [and the Jewish state of Israel].

As it was in the beginning….

At the San Remo Conference, the entire land mass between the Jordan River and the Sea, the so-called “Palestinian” West Bank, was assigned to the Jewish people. This is verifiable, and in writing, and was agreed to by the Hashemite King of the Hedjaz (later part of Saudi Arabia) who was party to the 1920 Sevres Treaty that explicitly stipulated that there would be “a national home for the Jewish people” in British Mandated Palestine.

Image

In the east, the land, not including Jersualem, Judea and Samaria, was given to the Arabs as a present to the colonising Hashemites of Saudi Arabia in return for supporting Britain and France against Turkey during the breakup of the Ottoman Caliphate. It was called Transjordan, later re-named Jordan.

In the west, the land now named the “West Bank” [but legally known as Palestine prior to 1948 and designated under international law as a Jewish homeland], was given to the Jews and included Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria. And Hebron.

The ancient Jewish town of Hebron, is the home and burial place of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Sarah, Rebecca and Leah as mentioned in the Bible and accepted by both Christians and Muslims (in that chronological order) some 1,800 years before Islam began its conquest, occupation and subjugation of the near and middle east.

And while it is true that these Jewish biblical Patriarchs are also recognised by Islam as “friends of God” [in Arabic, Al-Khalil is a direct translation from the ancient Hebrew word “Haver”: friend], it is also incontrovertible that these were figures of religious importance to a Jewish nation, religion and history which had established itself and survived for one and a half millennia before even the birth of Islam.

In other words, if we are to stand by that same international law which is of importance to Mr Xenophon, then Article 6 of the Mandate, charged Britain with the duty to facilitate Jewish immigration and close settlement by Jews in the territory which then included Transjordan, as called for in the Balfour declaration, that had already been adopted by the other Allied Powers. As a trustee, Britain had a fiduciary duty to act in good faith in carrying out the duties imposed by the Mandate.

This was reiterated by the League of Nations, 1922, and incorporated into the UN Charter, Article 80, which prohibited the UN to tamper with the League of Nations decisions related to the matter discussed.

More than that, the 1920 agreement incorporated the previous 1915 McMahon-Hussein agreement between Britain and Sherif Hussein of Mecca, where Britain separated the territory east of the Jordan River namely Transjordan (since renamed Jordan) from Palestine west of the Jordan which it had designated, under internationally codified regulations as a home for the Jewish people.

And so, under international law, as the San Remo resolution has never been abrogated, it was and continues to be legally binding between the several parties who signed it.

This would make the claim of an occupied “Palestine” and an “Arab-Muslim West Bank, one of the most important public-relation put-overs by those who wish to de-legitimise and demonise the State of Israel in recent times.

To add insult to the injury of canvassing that Israel occupies “Palestine” as a brutal apartheid regime, it was Arab Muslims under the Hashemite king of Jordan who made a land grab in 1948 of the west bank of the land slated for a Jewish state under international law as I have iterated above. The Jordanians also illegally took east Jerusalem at the same time and annexed East Jerusalem and the West Bank in 1949 in a measured dis-regard of international law.

Between 1948 and 1967, the Muslim Arabs ethnically cleansed East Jerusalem and the West Bank of Jews.

This was the only time in three millennia of recorded history that Jews did not live in East Jerusalem, putting the current Arab Muslim narrative of Israeli “apartheid”, a country with 2 million voting and working Arabs, into perspective…….

…is now and….
As many now know, East Jerusalem was taken back by Israel in 1967. Under international law, in a defensive military action.
Therefore, this makes the current claim of the “Palestinians” a curious one under international law, and is a major reason there is no “Palestinian” State today on the west bank of the river: Jordan is “Palestine”.

I agree with Mr Xenophon that disputes between peoples should be settled under international law.

It is now time that those who would make pronouncements on “occupation” “heartbreak”, “division” and “legal right” in Israel and the Middle East, temper their comments with observation of the facts.

The Muslim Arab narrative of an “occupied” “Palestine” under an apartheid Jewish regime which has “stolen” Arab land is a remarkably successful public relations coup for the Arabs.

However, it will never be able to spin or circumvent international law which designated land west of the Jordan River to be the homeland of the Jewish people, and land east of the Jordan River, to be the Arab Muslim State of Palestine.

… ever shall be…
To this end, Israel exists as a legal entity in a string of international understandings and treaties codified by international law going back as far as the 1915 McMahon-Hussein agreement between Britain and Sherif Hussein of Mecca regarding the division of the Ottoman Caliphate [see above].

This was further reinforced by the 1916 Sykes-Picot agreement between Britain and France and supported in principle by the 1917 Balfour Declaration as a statement of intent on the creation of a Jewish state in Mandated Palestine.

To that is added the legal agreements of the April 1920 San Remo Conference which entrenched under international law the principles of the Balfour Declaration.

Later that same year, the August 1920 Treaty of Sèvres, abolished the Ottoman Empire and obliged Turkey to renounce all rights over Arab Asia and North Africa. Apart from the major powers, the Treaty was attended and signed by the Hashemite King of the Hedjaz as representative of Arab interests in the region who was a signatory to the explicit stipulation of the Treaty that there would be “a national home for the Jewish people” in British Mandated Palestine so long as he could lay claim to a British-supported Arab kingdom in Transjordan [in addition to the creation of the Arab states of Syria, Lebanon and Iraq…].

Even though history is said to be written by the victors, the importance and legal standing of the 1920 San Remo conference can never be wished away by those who wish for the demise of the Jewish state. If we allowed that to happen, it would open the floodgates of terror and violence.

That is why, in the April 2010 commemoration of the San Remo Conference which was attended by politicians and others from Europe, the U.S. and Canada in San Remo, participants felt it incumbent upon themselves to make the following statement that:

“…. the San Remo Resolution of 1920 recognized the exclusive national Jewish rights to the Land of Israel under international law, on the strength of the historical connection of the Jewish people to the territory previously known as Palestine.

“Recalling that such a seminal event as the San Remo Conference of 1920 has been forgotten or ignored by the community of nations, and that the rights it conferred upon the Jewish people have been unlawfully dismissed, curtailed and denied.

“Asserting that a just and lasting peace, leading to the acceptance of secure and recognized borders between all States in the region, can only be achieved by recognizing the long established rights of the Jewish people under international law.”

 Truth without end. Amen
Mr Xenophon is an understandably busy person, with perhaps insufficient time to devote to reading all about the ins and outs of the Arab-Israeli conflict. He was invited by a special interest group to visit a part of the world he would not normally consider visiting, and he accepted.

However, in the name of that same international law which he invokes so eloquently on behalf of the “Palestinians”, it behoves Mr Xenophon to pay as much attention to those legal principles which enshrine the right of the Middle East’s aboriginal/indigenous Jewish people to a state of their own before they were overrun, colonised, occupied and dispersed by waves of Muslim conquest in the 7th century C.E., some nearly two millennia after the Jews were already established in the Land of Israel.

In other words, if Mr Xenophon believes land rights based on principles of continuous occupation and recorded history (but not any international law) of an indigenous people were good enough for Eddie Mabo in Australia, then those same principles (with the added legitimacy of international law) must also be good enough for the indigenous Jewish people in the State of Israel today.

It is time to stop sugar-coating this four-decade campaign with euphemisms.

It is time to recognise that much of the current mainstream media support of an Arab boycott of a legal Jewish entity in the Middle East is symptomatic of a resurgent anti-semitism: same canards; different actors.

It is time to realise that Israel will remain implacably opposed to all those entities who would force her to build a peace on a foundation of historically refuted lies.

Israel has every legal, moral and historical right to exist, because the alternative does not bear thinking about.

Let us call this campaign, which hijacks the energies of myriad well-intentioned people like Mr Xenophon, by its real name: a virulent middle eastern anti-semitism of the kind the world has already seen in a different time and a different place…………..