miércoles, junio 27, 2007

Los "progresistas" británicos... muestran sus preferencias

The call for a boycott against Israeli academicians by the British University and College Union (UCU) reflects the depths to which vicious hostility against Israel has become ingrained in British society.

It is an abomination for "educators," purporting to be liberal or progressive, to sanction a dastardly resolution boycotting academics from the only democratic state in the Middle East. It is especially bizarre because Israeli universities are pluralistic with no limitations on the enrolment of Israeli Arab students. In stark contrast, many Palestinian Arab "universities" promote a cult of death, suicide bombers and the destruction of the Jewish state.

It may be politically incorrect to describe such boycotts as anti-Semitic rather than anti-Israel. But the time has now surely come to call a spade a spade.

To demonize Israel while ignoring the brutal denial of human rights in Islamic states - with 400,000 murdered in Darfur alone - does not merely reflect distorted double standards. Notwithstanding the high proportion of turncoat Jews among boycott proponents (and even ex-Israelis), by any benchmark this must be deemed an anti-Semitic act.

The noxious atmosphere radiating venom against Israel is now so intense that it is reminiscent of what European Jews must have endured in the 1930s when they were transformed into pariahs.

Whereas the early Nazi anti-Jewish boycott initiatives were against Jewish enterprises, today these activities are directed against the surrogate of the Jewish people, the Jewish state. Of course Jews in England are not about to be herded into concentration camps. But there are undoubtedly other ominous similarities.

It is noteworthy that in the 1930s, liberals and the Left defended Jews against the Nazis. Yet today they are leading the pack against Israel and align themselves with the darkest forces of fundamentalist Islam who proudly proclaim their intent to fulfill the Nazi objective of annihilating Jews and their institutions.

The nightmare is heightened when even many of those who recognize the potency of the Islamic threat to Britain's open society blame these Islamic excesses on Israel. In their distorted world view, had Israel not been created, Muslims would not have been humiliated and the rage against the West would not have eventuated. The extent of the grotesque distortion of reality is reflected in opinion polls which demonstrate that the average Briton has been brainwashed into believing that Israel represents the greatest threat to world peace, even exceeding Iran.

Of course, much responsibility for this negative climate rests with successive Israeli governments which failed to grapple with the war of ideas or provide guidance to Diaspora Jewish communities. The cynical outbursts of failed politicians like Avrum Burg who demonize their own country and the utilization of Israeli universities as launching pads for anti-Israeli activity by extremist post- Zionist academics also contributed toward the delegitimization of the Jewish state.

However, all this does not invalidate the obligation of Anglo Jewry to defend itself.

On previous occasions I expressed concern about the passivity of those Anglo-Jewish leaders who, as an act of faith, rely unduly on silent diplomacy and maintain a low profile out of a concern not to rock the boat.

The impotence of their proclaimed policy of "whispering" rather than "shouting" in response to anti-Semitic acts and delegitimization of Israel is exemplified by the recent painful debates over whether to hold public activities on the 40th anniversary of the Six Day War lest it provoke the enemy, and Jewish inclinations to hold protest meetings in closed areas.

Such attitudes have resulted in Anglo-Jewish leaders frequently being depicted as "trembling Israelites." Their behavior contrasts starkly with the French Jewish leaders who displayed courage and determination in the face of anti-Semitism.

The core of the problem is that many British Jewish leaders remain in denial and either downplay or refuse to face the reality of the waves of anti-Semitism - disguised as anti- Zionism - which are engulfing them. This was reflected at the annual president's banquet of the Board of Deputies of British Jews. At a time of profound crisis in Israel, with anti-Semitism at an all time high in England, I was reliably informed that the address by board president Henry Grunwald centered on the obligation of Anglo-Jewry to protest against the infringement of human rights in Darfur.

Of course what is happening at Darfur is an outrage to humanity to which Jews must be especially sensitive. But for a Jewish leader to refer at such an occasion almost exclusively to Darfur, virtually ignoring the fires that are burning in the Jewish world and the existential threats facing Israel, says it all.

In the wake of the reprehensible boycott resolution, the Board of Deputies stands exposed in all its nakedness. There is of course no guarantee that tougher counter action would necessarily have prevented the passage of the resolution. But we will never know, because Anglo-Jewish leaders relied principally on back channels to combat the resolution and were shocked when it was carried. Now they have launched a campaign to reverse the decision.

After the passage of such an abominable resolution, one would surely have expected every Jewish leader, every rabbi, and every activist, to stand up and express anger and disgust against such a moral outrage. Instead we heard expressions of regret, and reasoned academic responses. What were lacking were outpourings of moral indignation that such a biased and evil resolution could have been incubated by educators in the birthplace of democracy.

Of course there are voices of protest. Melanie Phillips the courageous journalist and author of the acclaimed Londonistan is having a major impact. Ronnie Fraser has been conducting a tough uphill campaign on behalf of Academic Friends of Israel. Andrew Balcombe, the chairman of the British Zionist Federation, in an interview with the BBC accused the UK of being the most anti-Semitic country in Europe. Many rank and file British Jews are willing to confront the anti-Semites but are being deterred by "leaders" who insist that strident protest activities are counterproductive.Perhaps the time has come for British Jews to bypass their timid representatives and initiate action independently.

The greatest negative fallout from the passivity of Anglo Jews is not that anti-Semitism will grow - which it undoubtedly will. It is the impact that such cowardly behavior will have on future generations of British Jews. What can one expect in the years to come from today's youngsters who see their parents and leaders fail to confront those who demonize Israel and the Jewish people? If the official leadership of Anglo-Jewry does not change its attitude, the current malaise may only represent the tip of the iceberg.

The writer chairs the Diaspora-Israel Relations Committee of the Jerusalem Centre for Public Affairs and is a veteran international Jewish leader.

This article can also be read at http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1182409638498&pagename=JPost/JPArticle/ShowFull

Páginas perversas

Como en ésta que figura aquí
son muchas las que la Red acoje. Conviene conocerlas para comprender, en toda su dimensión, la propaganda antijudía y sus principales argumentos.

domingo, junio 24, 2007

The Fall of the House of Yasir

By Barry Rubin
“DURING the whole of a dull, dark, and soundless day in the autumn of the year….I had been passing alone, on horseback, through a singularly dreary tract of country; and at length found myself, as the shades of the evening drew on, within view of the melancholy House of Usher….With the first glimpse of the building, a sense of insufferable gloom pervaded my spirit.” Thus, Edgar Alan Poe began his remarkable 1839 short story, “The Fall of the House of Usher.”
Similar feelings beset me in contemplating the fall of the house of Yasir, the collapse of the PLO, of Fatah, and of Palestinian nationalism as a movement. I won’t go into that history of disaster in detail but suffice it to say that what is happening now fits completely into that pattern.
Put your finger into the wine and flick one drop onto the plate for each item: 1948 war; 1967 war; failed West Bank guerrilla war; September 1970 in Jordan; terrorism; Lebanese civil war; intransigence; internal anarchy; the murder of the first moderates; corruption; incitement to terrorism and intransigence; throwing away the opportunity at Camp David; throwing away the opportunity of 1988 dialogue with the United States; the 1990s’ peace process; and the second intifada. Forgive me for leaving out even more such examples.
Is there a pattern? Yes:
--By seeking everything, get nothing. Having as one’s goal the destruction of Israel and total victory, rather than a compromise solution, the movement sank ever deeper into the mire.
--Glorifying violence and terrorism brought death and destruction on the movement and its followers.
--Embracing extremism, incitement, and demonization of Israel brought Hamas as its logical outcome.
And now ask yourselves one simple question: Do you really believe that the Hamas coup is going to scare Fatah straight? Are these leaders and ideologues really going to learn their lesson?
Well, this seems to be the main assumption of political leaders and the media in democratic countries. After all, to paraphrase Samuel Johnson, facing the hangman supposedly greatly concentrates the mind.
But wait a minute! The PLO, Fatah, and their hierarchies have made a whole career about facing the hangman and tweaking his nose while giggling madly. If they had learned from, say, September 1970 in Jordan or other disasters it would have been sufficient for them to get on the right path.
Remember the Oslo process and why was it going to work? Because, we were told, the PLO and Fatah were so weak and so buffeted by catastrophe as finally to understand they must change their ways or be destroyed. Here we go again!
Don’t get me wrong. I do believe Fatah is preferable to Hamas—though the gap is far narrower than all too many people seem to think.
But even if you want to believe that Abbas is some peace-loving good guy, he is weak, incompetent, has no following and no intention of really confronting the culture of terrorism and extremism his own group created and maintains. He will also never give up the demand that all Palestinians should be able to live in Israel which is a deeply personal belief of his.
One of the best stories explaining the Western approach to the Middle East is the following anecdote I made up: A tourist goes into a bazaar shop, points at a carpet and declares, “This is the most beautiful carpet I have ever seen! I must have it no matter how much it costs? What’s the price?”
This is how Abbas is being treated. His mere survival, no matter what he does, is being portrayed as such a marvelous asset that he is doing everyone a favor taking their money and help. Is this going to give him any incentive to change, an outcome already rather doubtful?
For goodness sake, if he and his colleagues want to survive—and not end up as bloodied corpses on some Hamas video—they better clean up corruption, give their people a moderate alternative, and stop cross-border terrorism. It is their job to persuade us that we have a real reason for not watching Hamas butcher them and loot their houses.
Otherwise, we will be forced to stand by, like Poe’s character, and watch those unwilling to save themselves. “That once barely discernible fissure…rapidly widened….I saw the mighty walls rushing asunder” and the ground closed over the fragments of the House of Usher.
Isn’t Middle East politics like a horror story, after all? It holds our attention for many reasons but this is one of them. “Look out behind you!” We warn, always in vain as the murderer or monster sneaks up. And isn’t there always that dumb sheriff or reporter, later inevitably getting eaten or stabbed, who keeps saying, “There isn’t anything there. It’s all in your imagination!”
Of course, fictional victims can be forgiven since they are only stalked and killed once. They had no chance to learn their lesson. We do and so does Fatah. But in the Middle East, the same things happen over and over. It would be wonderful if someone some day stopped the raving and instead insisted: Nevermore.
Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center, Interdisciplinary Center (IDC). His new book is The Truth About Syria (Palgrave-Macmillan).

Professor Barry Rubin,
Director, Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center
Editor, Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal
Editor, Turkish Studies

sábado, junio 23, 2007

The Europeans apparently think that Israelis are morons

... and that we would be willing to negotiate with genocidal gangsters who intend to destroy us, if only they will release our kidnapped soldier. The effect of the cease fire, in the absence of any political changes in the attitude of the Hamas and the now defunct "Unity" government, would have been to secure Israeli acquiescence and international legitimacy for a genocidal government, which has demonstrated its true nature by butchering the members of its "partner" group in the "unity" government, the Fateh, and by torching churches. The reality of the "unity" government, as Israeli and U.S. diplomats correctly perceived, indeed, as everyone understood, was that Mr. Abbas and the Fateh had no real say in it, and that all decisions were made by the Hamas, presumably on orders from Khaled Meshal and his masters in Damascus. The eagerness with which Mr. De Soto and his friends, who must have known the truth, were will willing to sell out Israel and the Fateh to this monstrous government is instructive. Even now, after the real nature of the Hamas and of the "unity" government has been graphically and brutally illustrated by wholesale barbarism in Gaza, there are still "humanitarians" like De Soto, who are working tirelessly to legitimize these genocidal fanatics and enemies of humanity. Russia, Indonesia, Qatar and South Africa blocked a U.S. and EU initiative to back the government of Mahmoud Abbas.

Isn't it time to end the Hamas boycott, by ending the Hamas?

Ami Isseroff

(art. completo en ver)

viernes, junio 22, 2007

Irshad Manji: Islam the problem

June 21, 2007
GROWING up in Vancouver, I attended an Islamic school every Saturday. There, I learned that Jews can't be trusted because they worship "moolah, not Allah", meaning money, not God. According to my teacher, every last Jew is consumed with business. But looking around my neighbourhood, I noticed that most of the new business signs featured Asian languages: Mandarin, Cantonese, Japanese, Korean, Hindi, Punjabi and plenty of Urdu. Not Hebrew, Urdu, which is spoken throughout Pakistan. That reality check made me ask: What if my religious school isn't educating me? What if it's indoctrinating me? I'm reminded of this question thanks to the news that Salman Rushdie, author of The Satanic Verses and 10 other works of fiction, will be knighted by the Queen. On Monday, Pakistan's religious affairs minister said that because Rushdie had blasphemed Islam with provocative literature, it was understandable that angry Muslims would commit suicide bombings over his knighthood. Members of parliament, as well as the Pakistani Government, amplified the condemnation of Britain, feeding cries of offence to Muslim sensibilities from Europe to Asia. As a Muslim, you better believe I'm offended - by these absurd reactions. I'm offended that it is not the first time honours from the West have met with vitriol and violence. In 1979, Pakistani physicist Abdus Salam became the first Muslim to win the Nobel Prize in science. He began his acceptance speech with a verse from the Koran. Salam's country ought to have celebrated him. Instead, rioters tried to prevent him from re-entering the country. Parliament even declared him a non-Muslim because he belonged to a religious minority. His name continues to be controversial, invoked by state authorities in hushed tones. I'm offended that every year, there are more women killed in Pakistan for allegedly violating their family's honour than there are detainees at Guantanamo Bay. Muslims have rightly denounced the mistreatment of Gitmo prisoners. But where's our outrage over the murder of many more Muslims at the hands of our own? I'm offended that in April, mullahs at an extreme mosque in Pakistan issued a fatwa against hugging. The country's female tourism minister had embraced - or, depending on the account you follow, accepted a congratulatory pat from - her skydiving instructor after she successfully jumped in a French fundraiser for the victims of the 2005 Pakistan earthquake. Clerics announced her act of touching another man to be "a great sin" and demanded she be fired. I'm offended by their fatwa proclaiming that women should stay at home and remain covered at all times. I'm offended that they've bullied music store owners and video vendors into closing up shop. I'm offended that the Government tiptoes around their craziness because these clerics threaten suicide attacks if confronted. I'm offended that on Sunday, at least 35 Muslims in Kabul were blown to bits by other Muslims and on Tuesday, 80 more in Baghdad by Islamic "insurgents", with no official statement from Pakistan to deplore these assaults on fellow believers. I'm offended that amid the internecine carnage, a professed atheist named Salman Rushdie tops the to-do list. Above all, I'm offended that so many other Muslims are not offended enough to demonstrate widely against God's self-appointed ambassadors. We complain to the world that Islam is being exploited by fundamentalists, yet when reckoning with the opportunity to resist their clamour en masse, we fall curiously silent. In a battle between flaming fundamentalists and mute moderates, who do you think is going to win? I'm not saying that standing up to intimidation is easy. This past spring, the Muslim world made it that much more difficult. A 56-member council of Islamic countries pushed the UN Human Rights Council to adopt a resolution against the "defamation of religion". Pakistan led the charge. Focused on Islam rather than on faith in general, the resolution allows repressive regimes to squelch freedom of conscience further - and to do so in the guise of international law. On occasion, though, the people of Pakistan show that they don't have to be muzzled by clerics and politicians. Last year, civil society groups vocally challenged a set of anti-female laws, three decades old and supposedly based on the Koran. Their religiously respectful approach prompted even mullahs to hint that these laws are man-made, not God-given. This month, too, Pakistanis forced their Government to lift restrictions on the press. No wonder my own book, translated into Urdu and posted on my website, is being downloaded in droves. Religious authorities won't let it be sold in the markets. But they can't stop Pakistanis - or other Muslims - from satiating a genuine hunger for ideas. In that spirit, it's high time to ban hypocrisy under the banner of Islam. Rushdie is not the problem. Muslims are. After all, the very first bounty on Rushdie's head was worth $US2 million. It rose to $US 2.5 million. Then came higher reward numbers. The chief benefactor, Iran's government, claimed that the money had been profitably invested. Looks like Jews are not the only people handy at business.

Irshad Manji is creator of the new documentary Faith Without Fear. She is author of The Trouble with Islam Today: A Muslim's Call for Reform in Her Faith (Random House Australia The Australian — Opinion The irrational response to Salman Rushdie's knighthood is sadly typical

miércoles, junio 20, 2007


Palestinian comment: Gaza coup will bring Islamization

Palestinian Walid Salem offers this projection of events. His prediction that Hamas will attempt to Islamize Egypt is alarming. It is interesting in view of persistent reports that Egypt will support the Hamas in order to combat Al-Qaeda. The two ideas are not mutually exclusive. Both sides will try to use each other. As he points out, Hamas will probably make order in Gaza, providing some benefit to the average citizens. This is, in fact already beginning to happen according to reports.

(Leer más en: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ZNN/message/865)