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Posts Tagged ‘Anti Israel’

How to Get on BBC’s Question Time (Panel Member or Audience)

Monday, February 3rd, 2014

Because it so often bravely challenges the Zionist narrative (read, for example, about Melanie Philips’ most recent experience) I never miss an episode of BBC’s Question Time. I ended up listening to it (as opposed to watching it) on 30 January and I have to say it was especially exhilarating because there was completely uniform acceptance (by the panel and the audience) of our leftist narrative on every single issue (although sadly, for once the Zionist entity was not mentioned). Given that the panel always includes one ‘Conservative’ you might think I am exaggerating – until I tell you that the ‘Conservative’ was Ken Clarke MP (who I think may have disagreed with some of the more heroic views expressed but was too laid back to bother saying so). I understand the other panelists were shadow attorney general Emily Thornberry MP, Liberal Democrat peer Lord Oakeshott, comedian and feminist activist Kate Smurthwaite, and director general of the Institute of Economic Affairs Mark Littlewood.Bravo to them!!

To give an example of their sharp thinking, one of the questions was about the recent decision by the UK Government to give another £600million for Syrian aid and to allow the immediate entry of Syrian refugees to the UK. The panel were in total agreement that not only was all of this obviously the right thing to do, but that it was a scandal that the UK was not doing much more. But one fool in the audience had the audacity to say something like “why are we giving all this massive support to Syrians when there are millions of old people suffering hardship in the UK and many affected by the floods who are getting no government support”. The answer (I think from Emily Thornberry) to thunderous and sustained applause was: “Because, unlike the people in the UK, the Syrians did not choose to be the victims of a terrible civil war”. Analysing the brilliance of that statement deserves a blog posting all of its own (at some point in the future I will write one about it).

There was much more brilliance along those lines, but both of the women on the panel (I was listening but not watching) sounded exactly like my marvellous best friend Camilla with every utterance more incisive than the previous way and each being greeted by even louder applause. The men on the panel simply agreed with everything they said. In fact, based on what I heard I am delighted to report that there is NO alternative voice allowed. So, based only on comments from one program, I think it is safe to assume that if you want to appear on Question Time – either as a panel member or audience member it is mandatory for you to believe all of the following:

  • Global warming/Climate change is by far and away the most important problem mankind has ever confronted and all the world’s wealthy countries must use all their money to combat it. The floods in Somerset are proof that climate change is now about to completely destroy the world – and it is all entirely man made. Not a single scientist disagrees, but a tiny number of insane climate deniers are in control of things and stopping any progress.
  • Second in importance to climate change is the need to allow unlimited millions of refugees – especially from troubled Muslim nations – into the UK and they must be given unlimited funds forever and we must under no circumstances attempt any kind of background check on any one of them as this is Islamaphobic. Doing this will be fantastic for the UK economy because all Muslims are peace loving with an incredible work ethic.
  • Third in importance to combating climate change and solving all the world’s refugee problems by ourselves is how to confront the evil fascists of UKIP.
  • It is a crime to be rich, but fortunately taxing the rich will solve every economic problem.
  • Giving unlimited money to people on the doll, immigrants etc will lead to massive economic growth for the UK as it will give them spending power.
  • Foreign freedom fighters convicted in the UK must never be deported
  • The world is so interconnected and everybody is really so similar that we have an obligation to help every country in the world where there is conflict and poverty because doing so will lead to an improvement in the world economy. In fact, the British economy can only improve by giving all our money to poor nations because that will make them richer and they will then spend their money boosting our economy. In any case all that poverty and conflict is the fault of the rich Western nations and that is why it is our responsibility to solve it.

And, of course, you will be very pleased to known that one of next week’s guests is none other than my former employee George Galloway; so to get on the program you will also need to add the obligatory beliefs about the Middle East and Israel (see full list here and here).

If all that was not uplifting enough, following Question Time was the Andrew Neil programme where he and his guests essentially repeated everything that was agreed on Question Time (and Andrew Neil is also supposed to be a ‘conservative’). There was, however, one dissenting voice: a Syrian woman interviewed by Andrew Neil who said the Syrian refugees should go to Arab countries not the UK because their culture and language was the same whereas it was completely alien to the UK. Fortunately Andrew Neil literally laughed at her saying, correctly, that we must not allow the Syrians to go to Arab countries because they would be repressed. He said that wealthy Arab countries like Saudi Arabia were out of the question because ‘the women would be forced to cover up’ (and ‘we’ in the UK must not allow that to happen), while the ‘other Arab countries are too poor or overcrowded’. And luckily for all of us, there are no such countries called UAE, Qatar, Bahrein etc.

Visit Confronting Antisemitism and Israel Hatred in the UK.

Harper Catches Anti-Israel Media Bias Red-Handed

Tuesday, January 21st, 2014

Visiting Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper exposed anti-Israel media bias Tuesday by noting that no reporter asked him in Ramallah about human rights in the Palestinian Authority but peppered him with questions on Jewish settlements when he was in Jerusalem.

At a joint press conference with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu Tuesday, Harper was asked several times to make a statement on settlements. He kept repeating what he has said he arrived on Sunday – that the purpose of his visit is not to “single out Israel” for criticism.

When a reported pressed him again on the issue, Harper replied, “Once again, let me emphasize it: I am not here to single out Israel for criticism. I find it, you know, interesting – let me just make it as an observation – that, you know, yesterday in the Palestinian Authority, no one asked me there, no one asked me there to single out the Palestinian Authority for any criticism in terms of governance or human rights or anything else.

“I’m asked to single out Israel. When I’m in Israel,  I’m asked to single out Israel; when I’m in the Palestinian Authority, I’m asked to single out Israel; and in half the other places around the world you ask me to single out Israel.”

Harper in a single swipe described the international mindset against Israel more clearly than any Israeli official has ever done.

Netanyahu picked up the beat and stated, “Now, there are two things that I want to puncture, two prevailing myths. Well, one is no longer with us. The first one, which was repeated ad nauseum – you can check if you are a repeater – but until recently, everybody who knew anything about the Middle East explained that the core of the conflict, always in the singular, conflict; the core of the conflict in the Middle East was the Palestinian problem. You remember that?

“Now, today you’d be laughed out of most places…, including the leading campuses in the West – even there – if you argued this, what was accepted as a common, obvious truth…

“The core of the many conflicts of the Middle East is not the Palestinian conflict. But what is the core of the Palestinian conflict itself? And here you have another great myth, and the myth is that the core is basically the settlements. Okay, now mind you the settlements issue, on which Canada has a different position from Israel – I guarantee you, that’s the case, okay? But the core, the settlement issue has to be resolved and will be resolved in a context of peace negotiations. But it is not the core of the conflict. We know that because this conflict raged for half a century before there was a single Israeli settlement, before there was a single Israeli soldier in Judea, Samaria or Gaza.

“This conflict began in 1920, 1921, with the attack on the Jewish immigration depot – murderous attack – in Jaffa. In Jaffa! And it raged on in the attack on the ancient Jewish community of Hebron; it’s been there since, practically unbroken since the time of Abraham – almost 4,000 years.

“And continued in the great attacks by the Palestinians on the Jews here in 1936 to 1939; there were no settlements there. It continued in the rejection of the partition resolution in 1947 that called for a Palestinian state next to – an Arab state actually – next to the Jewish state. There were no settlements. And it continued right up to 1967 when the West Bank, Judea, Samaria, and Gaza were firmly in Arab hands and it was meant to… to do what? To liberate the lands that were already in their hands?…

Rep. Jim Moran, Notorious for Repeated Clashes with Jews, Retires

Thursday, January 16th, 2014

Virginia Democratic Rep. Jim Moran, a longtime congressman from northern Virginia who repeatedly clashed with pro-Israel and Jewish groups, is retiring.

Moran, 68, told media Wednesday that he would not run again in his district, which comprises Arlington, Falls Church and parts of Alexandria and Fairfax County, because it has become strongly Democratic, making his vacant seat safe for the Democratic Party. He was first elected to Congress in 1990.

Moran had repeated clashes with pro-Israel groups and with Jewish members of his Democratic caucus over claims he made in 2003 and 2007 that without Jewish support, the United States would not have launched the war with Iraq.

A blunt speaker who never got the hang of holding his tongue, he got into deeper trouble with his apology in 2003, when he seemed to accuse Jews of controlling who gets elected.

His district includes one of the fastest-growing Jewish populations in the Washington area, and in the 2002 election he solicited a letter from Jewish lawmakers praising his support for Israel.

A year later, after his claim at a town hall meeting that “If it were not for the strong support of the Jewish community for this war with Iraq, we would not be doing this,” a number of the Jewish lawmakers who had signed the original letter repudiated him and said they would no longer support his election.

Referring to that repudiation and other calls for him to step down in an interview with a newspaper in which he also apologized for the original offensive remark, he said: “It’s unhealthy for the American political process for any group within our society to be able to decide who should and who shouldn’t represent a constituency.” That occasioned another round of condemnations.

His notoriety was such that in 2008, presidential candidate Barack Obama welcomed Moran’s endorsement, which was routine – and simultaneously reassured the Jewish community that he disagreed with Moran on who was to blame for the Iraq War.

Whenever he was faced with such complaints, Moran would note that one of his daughters had converted to Judaism.

Academic Group Hosts BDS, Bars Pro-Israel Groups at Panel on Israel

Thursday, January 2nd, 2014

The pro-Israel campus groups Hillel International and the Israel on Campus Coalition (ICC) have been denied the right to present a discussion on Israel at the Jan. 9-12 Modern Language Association (MLA) convention in Chicago, JNS.org has learned.

MLA’s convention includes a roundtable discussion that will feature supporters but no opponents of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel.

The discussion – titled “Academic Boycotts: A Conversation about Israel and Palestine “– is seen as a possible precursor to an MLA academic boycott of Israel, which would mirror recent boycotts by the American Studies Association and the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association.

The MLA convention will consider a resolution that condemns Israel for alleged “arbitrary denials of entry to Gaza and the West Bank by U.S. academics who have been invited to teach, confer, or do research at Palestinian universities.”

Hillel and the ICC asked the 30,000-member MLA for the chance to present what they called an “open discussion featuring MLA members regarding academic freedom in Israel, its territories, and Gaza,” but MLA said the deadline to book a meeting at the convention had passed.

“The MLA convention has procedures for its members to organize sessions, and that deadline was 1 April [2013],” MLA Executive Director Rosemary G. Feal, the MLA’s executive director, wrote in an email to ICC Executive Director Jacob Baime. “We do not rent space at our convention for nonmembers to hold discussions.”

The existing MLA session’s speakers will include BDS movement co-founder Omar Barghouti; University of Texas professor Barbara Jane Harlow, who has stated her support for the ASA boycott of Israel; University of Southern California professor of English David Lloyd, a well-known BDS activist; and Wesleyan University professor Richard Ohmann, who signed a 2009 letter that described Israeli treatment of Palestinians as “one of the most massive, ethnocidal atrocities of modern times.” University of Texas professor Samer M. Ali, who publicly defended the ASA boycott, organized the roundtable.

“We believe the members of the MLA deserve to hear a far more diverse set of perspectives on the issue of academic freedom in Israel and nearby countries. The MLA members, as academics, certainly can appreciate the value of multiple perspectives on what is a very controversial issue,” ICC’s Baime said.

ICC and Hillel said they are now considering organizing a “balancing panel” discussion at a nearby location during the MLA convention. The panel would feature MLA members who oppose the anti-Israel resolution being considered at the convention.

Ali, the organizer of the convention’s roundtable on BDS, told The Chronicle of Higher Education that the roundtable assumes that Israel violates the rights of Palestinians, and that the debate will center on what to do about it.

“If people want to come and debate occupation, I think it will be a waste of their time, because that’s not what the roundtable is about,” Ali said.

Brandeis, Penn State Quit ASA after Vote to Boycott Israel

Thursday, December 19th, 2013

Brandeis University and Penn State Harrisburg on Wednesday announced they have withdrawn from the American Studies Association (ASA) following the ASA membership’s Dec. 15 vote to endorse a boycott of Israel.

“We view the recent vote by the membership to affirm an academic boycott of Israel as a politicization of the discipline and a rebuke to the kind of open inquiry that a scholarly association should foster,” the Brandeis American Studies Department said in a statement. “We remain committed to the discipline of American Studies but we can no longer support an organization that has rejected two of the core principles of American culture—freedom of association and expression.”

Dr. Simon Bronner, the head of the American Studies department at Penn State in Harrisburg, said in a statement, “In the wake of the passage of the resolution by the ASA to boycott Israeli institutions, which programs and departments such as Penn State Harrisburg’s program in American Studies consider to curtail academic freedom and undermine the reputation of American Studies as a scholarly enterprise, the chair of the American Studies program at Penn State Harrisburg plans to drop its institutional membership and will encourage others to do so.”

Podhoretz Storms Off 92nd Street Y Stage in Spat with J Street

Tuesday, December 17th, 2013

See Shushed and Booed, Podhoretz Walks Out on 92 St. Y Panel for a better informed version of this story.

Commentary editor John Podhoretz stormed off the New York’s 92nd Street Y Stage Monday night in the middle of spat with J Street president Jeremy Ben-Ami but denied reports that he said “students at Swarthmore College deserve to be spat upon.”

Jewish Daily Forward Jane Eisner, who moderated a panel discussion on the term “pro-Israel,” wrote in her account of the incident that Podhoretz “lost it when a member of the audience asked about the American Studies Association’s announcement Monday that it would boycott Israeli academic institutions over Israel’s treatment of Palestinians.”

Ben-Ami agreed that the ASA vote was “hypocritical” but then launched into a tirade against Israeli government policies, which he said “make it difficult for some Americans to believe Israel really does want peace with the Palestinians.” Podhoretz angrily replied, Eisner tried to calm tempers, and he then stalked off stage.

The Commentary editor wrote following the incident that he had a “bad night,” and he clarified his remark on spitting. Referring to the Hillel group at Swarthmore College, he wrote, “What I said was that if you advocate anti-Zionism, you are calling for the destruction of the homeland of my family. You are free to do so, and I am free to revile you and spit upon you.”

“This bit of hysterical rhetoric was not my finest verbal improvisation,” Podhoretz added, but he emphasized that he did not say anyone should be spat on. “Given that an organization cannot be spat upon, the flourish here, though admittedly stupid and in bad taste, was clearly and entirely rhetorical. Aside from that, I wouldn’t change a word of what I said, though.”

American Studies Association Votes to Boycott Israeli Universities

Monday, December 16th, 2013

A one-third turnout of American Studies Association (ASA) members have voted to endorse its national council’s call for a boycott of Israeli universities, the ASA announced Monday, a day after the deadline for voting.

There were 3,853 eligible voters, but votes were cast by only 1,252 members, two-thirds of whom approved the boycott, according to the ASA announcement. The resolution applies to ASA as an organization and targets institutions but is not binding on individual members.

The membership-wide canvas was unprecedented and was undertaken in part at the behest of boycott opponents, who said at a session during the ASA annual conference in Washington last month that the matter was too sensitive to leave up to the 20-member national council, which unanimously endorsed the boycott.

ASA describes itself as “devoted to the interdisciplinary study of American culture and history.”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/american-studies-association-votes-to-boycott-israeli-universities/2013/12/16/

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