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October 23, 2016 / 21 Tishri, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Conspiracy’

A Conspiracy Theory No Longer

Tuesday, September 13th, 2016

{Originally posted to the Commentary Magazine website}

A president’s illness is no small matter. With so much power residing in one individual, the necessity of having a possible successor ready to take control in the event of the commander in chief becoming incapacitated is vital. It’s equally important that the public not be kept in the dark about the health of a potential president, especially in light of a number of instances during the 20th century. Presidents such as Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Roosevelt, and John Kennedy kept grave medical problems secret from the public with the connivance of the press. That’s why the announcement that Hillary Clinton has been diagnosed with pneumonia must not only be treated with the greatest seriousness but also prompt both major-party campaigns to come clean about the medical records of the nominees.

The political implications of Clinton’s medical incident during the ceremony commemorating the 9/11 anniversary in New York are obvious. While most serious people dismissed the rumors about Clinton’s health that were being circulated by Donald Trump’s supporters, what happened Sunday morning will deepen suspicions both about her health and whether her campaign has been telling the truth about it. As I noted last month, when the issue first came to prominence, a dubious pickle-jar test on a late night comedy show isn’t enough to prove that Clinton is not suffering from some unknown problem.

Having said that, a diagnosis of pneumonia isn’t a death sentence. Nor, given treatment, must it be anything more than a temporary setback (unless there are other complications we don’t know about). There are few jobs more physically demanding than running for president in a general election. For almost two years, candidates must sprint from event to event, flying all over the country on a daily basis. It’s a killing pace, and it’s a wonder that Clinton and Trump, who are respectively 68 and 70, have held up so well under the strain.

But Clinton’s problem is particularly ill-timed. Trump is attempting to portray himself as a big tough guy running against a frail woman. On hot days, people can get dehydrated standing around under the sun. But for Clinton to falter in this manner undermines her campaign’s preferred narrative, which characterizes all questions about her health as smears. And if people are prepared to believe the worst about Clinton’s health, it’s due in part to her consistently lying about matters such as her email scandal and the conflicts of interest involving the Clinton Foundation.

Up until now, Clinton has actually been far more forthcoming about her health than Trump. But even her more detailed statement has fallen far short of what previous presidential candidates have released. It is no longer possible for her to refuse to give us more until Trump is equally forthcoming. Clinton must now come completely clean with detailed medical reports and allow her doctors to be questioned by reporters with medical expertise. Given his age, Trump should do the same. As is the case with his tax returns, it’s doubtful that the billionaire will release a single document. But he’s not the one whose health is currently in question.

The Clinton campaign must understand that the discussion is no longer about conspiracy theories but about how she’s seemed to wear down amid the stress of the campaign. She may well be fine after some rest and medication, and be ready to serve as president. But unless we are given a complete dossier about her health — including more about her 2012 concussion — voters are now entitled to be cynical about reassurances from her supporters. After weeks of other setbacks related to her credibility, Hillary’s very bad 9/11 was the last thing her camp needed.

Jonathan S. Tobin

Conspiracy Theory and Aliens Expert Barry Chamish, 64

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2016

Canadian-born Israeli writer and public speaker Barry Chamish passed away at age 64. He is best known for his conspiracy theory regarding the Yitzhak Rabin assassination, which received a great deal of support at the time, especially on the right. In addition, Chamish wrote extensively on Unidentified Flying Objects, particularly their sightings in Israel in the 1990s. Chamish’s work was featured on four episodes of the NBC-TV program Sightings as well as a half-hour of prime time coverage on FOX-TV. He also won the 1987 Israeli Scrabble Tournament.

His son Ariel posted the following eulogy on Facebook:

“With great sorrow I must announce the untimely passing of my father, journalist and author Barry Chamish, at age 64. It isn’t my habit to expose in public (or in private) heartfelt feelings that aren’t well wrapped and protected in a plethora of metaphors and amorphous images, clearly the result of my complex relationship with my father, whom, regretfully, I haven’t seen for close to nine years.

“Since the day he left I’ve chosen consciously to distance my soul from the fragility of depending emotionally on another person. For years this meant especially my connection to him. I’ve chosen to ignore the complexity of his personality and to justify my own inability to deal with a complex situation using imaginary universal rules that helped me suppress and keep away from the pain involved in the connection to a man I loved. I think both of us were this way, but he at least tried. I, on the other hand, in my selfishness, was looking for the easy way out, lying to myself that the Atlantic ocean is wide enough to keep us apart forever. And, new age cliché that I am, when I finally remembered — it was too late.

“At this moment of temporary weakness I want to thank you for the first time in my life for what I inherited from you, despite the fact that on the face of it I’ve become a man who is different from you: the anti-establishmentarianism and the anarchism, the critical thinking and the ability to express it in writing, the penchant for Rock and Roll and marijuana, an uncompromising faith in your own righteousness, your impressive ability to survive and, above all, the pure innocence that made you believe the world can be improved.

“I’m not really sure how much you believed in metaphysics, but on the outside chance that you believed enough and that your soul is listening somewhere out there, I ask for forgiveness. Forgive me for being too weak to say all these things when I still could. I’m sorry I didn’t try hard enough. I love you and I’m proud of you for your crazy legacy. I forgive you everything.

“Your only son, Ariel Chamish.”

Click here to visit the late Barry Chamish website.

David Israel

Down Rabbit Hole with Anti-Israel Conspiracy Crowd after Nice, Munich, Tweets

Monday, July 25th, 2016

To start our review of how the world’s conspiracy theories crazy crowd is lumping together Israel with every evil, real and imagined, let’s begin with the following headline, in a website called Veterans Today: “BREAKING! Same Israeli photo-propagandist pre-positioned in Nice AND NOW MUNICH.” And the story (one line, really) goes: “Mossad photographer Richard Gutjahr was pre-positioned in both Nice AND Munich! Talk about chutzpah.”

Richard Gutjahr, 43, is a German TV moderator, journalist and blogger. On July 14, 2016, Gutjahr was present at the truck ramming attack in Nice, which he reported on Twitter and on German media.

Gutjahr is married to former Israeli MK Einat Wilf. They have two children. That explains the “Israeli photo-propagandist” part. Gutjahr is not himself Israeli, but his wife is. Wilf is equally connected to the Labor party (served as consultant to Shimon Peres) and Likud (writes columns for Yisrael Hayom).

Richard Gutjahr

Richard Gutjahr

Now it gets complicated: after shooting the truck massacre in Nice more than two weeks ago, journalist Richard Gutjahr was also present during the police operation at the Olmypia shopping center in Munich and tweeted pictures from the incident. Gutjahr shared one picture of a group of armed police at the mall entrance, and another of armed officers crouching behind a wall.

Then he tweeted: “I made mistakes today. Could not believe that I once again ended up in such a situation. The images are now gone. #OEZ” The hashtag stands for Olympia-Einkaufszentrum, the mall where the attack took place.

Gutjahr tweet

What are the chances that the same journalist, who lives and works in Europe, would be present during two separate terrorist attacks within two weeks? Gutjahr himself appears stunned by this coincidence, as his tweet attests. He lost the images he had shot, admittedly that’s suspicious, but could also be explained so many reasonable different ways.

Enter former Georgia Democratic Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, whose Saturday night Tweet linked Israel to the two acts of terrorism: “Same Israeli photographer captures Nice and Munich tragedies,” McKinney tweeted, pointing to the Veterans Today page, and asking, “How likely is that? Remember the Dancing Israelis?”

Cynthia McKinney tweet

The “dancing Israelis” is a reference to a real rabbit hall drop, a September 11, 2001 story about a moving van with five young Israeli tourists which was stopped by NJ police in a Jersey City parking lot for what could best described as inappropriate behavior. The men were eventually detained and interrogated by the FBI. The FBI report about the incident remains classified until 2035. In the conspiracy theory universe, those five Israelis constitute the proof that Mossad was behind the 9/11 attack. Because, as we know, Mossad agents always dance in open parking lots after taking down major US targets.

Cynthia McKinney is no stranger to Planet Crazy. McKinney was defeated by Denise Majette in the 2002 Democratic primary. Her loss was a rejection by the voters of her support for Arab causes and her suggestion that President Bush knew in advance of the Sept. 11 attacks. Her father, State Rep. Billy McKinney, said on Atlanta TV that his daughter was fighting for her political life because the “Jews have bought everybody. Jews. J-e-w-s.”

On March 29, 2006, Cynthia McKinney struck a Capitol Hill Police officer for stopping her to ask for identification. In 2007 she left the Democratic Party. She ran for President as the Green Party candidate in 2008 and received 0.12% of the vote.

As to Richard Gutjahr, the video McKinney linked to claims: “The fact that this guy happened to be at both [terrorist attacks], there’s no way it’s a coincidence.” Add to that Gutjahr’s Israeli wife, who served in the IDF Intelligence unit, and the video concludes that “it’s 100 percent clear that Israel’s fingerprints are all over these events.”

The sad fact is that in many communities and many countries, you don’t need more than the above conspiracy silliness to convict, and attempts to explain that while it’s unusual for a German journalist to be present in two terror attacks, it’s far from impossible, or that being married to an Israeli does not make one a Mossad agent—immediately dub the explainer an agent of the same conspiracy. Because when one denies there is a conspiracy, isn’t that exactly what someone behind the conspiracy would say?


Erdogan Utilizing Turks’ Ingrained Conspiracy Theory Culture to Purge Foes, Real and Imagined

Friday, July 22nd, 2016

Devin Devlet (lit. giant state, col. deep state) is a Turkish word referring to the notion of there being a permanent government, existing through a shadowy network of civil servants, military officials and academics, who are the real decision makers. Every country on earth sports its own crowd of conspiracy theorists, who seem to proliferate following national disasters. But according to a growing number of respected voices in the media, Turkey, with its unique political history, may be the only democracy whose leader is the biggest believer in those conspiracy theories, which actually serve as the foundation of his policy and may have fashioned the ultimate conspiracy — a fake coups d’état.

Imagine that every conspiracy theory you’ve heard, from the Communists taking over America, to Obama conspiring with the deans of Al Azhar University to bring Islam to the US, to the CIA blowing up the World Trade Center, “was, if not true, at least plausible, and you have some idea of what the deep background of Turkish politics looks like,” James Palmer wrote this week in Vox. Palmer described the twentieth century in Turkey as a violent streaks of democratic government interlaced with military coups, resulting in an inevitable sense that someone in there is the puppeteer of this show, pulling the strings to fit his needs.

The Devin Devlet notion provided a reasonable explanation of their reality to generations of Turks living through perpetual instability: “To Islamists, its fundamental purpose is to crush religion; for liberals, it’s anti-democratic; for Kurds, it’s fanatically nationalist and anti-Kurdish; for nationalists, it’s secretly in league with the US; for anti-Semites, it’s an Israeli-backed scheme,” Palmer pointed out.

Roger Cohen, writing for the NY Times (Turkey’s Coup That Wasn’t) joined the growing voices suspicious of the Erdogan version of reality. “As coups go, the Turkish effort was a study in ineptitude: no serious attempt to capture or muzzle the political leadership, no leader ready to step in, no communication strategy (or even awareness of social media), no ability to mobilize a critical mass within either the armed forces or society. In their place a platoon of hapless soldiers on a bridge in Istanbul and the apparently uncoordinated targeting of a few government buildings in Ankara.”

Cohen is convinced that not only was the coup produced by the Erdogan regime, but that it was done with the tacit approval of the Obama Administration. He quoted a former special assistant to Obama on the Middle East, Philip Gordon, who said: “Rather than use this as an opportunity to heal divisions, Erdogan may well do the opposite: go after adversaries, limit press and other freedoms further, and accumulate even more power.”

Indeed, in a few hours more than 2,800 military personnel were detained and 2,745 judges were removed from duty, Cohen noted, adding that what’s coming next is “a prolonged crackdown on so-called ‘Gulenists,’ whoever Erdogan deems them to be, and the … ‘deep state.’ . . . An already divided society will grow more fissured. Secular Turkey will not quickly forget the cries of ‘Allahu akbar’ echoing from some mosques and from crowds in the streets.”

The speed with which the coup rose and crumbled continues to intrigue the western media. Mehul Srivastava and Laura Pitel, reporting from Turkey for the Financial Times, have suggested that “among the mysteries yet to be unraveled from the failed Turkish coup was this: the attack on Saturday morning by helicopter-borne commandos against a resort hotel in Marmaris. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was meant to be staying there. But the attack took place nearly an hour after every news channel in Turkey beamed images of Mr Erdogan addressing the nation from the airport in Istanbul, some 750 km away.”

“That episode is one of many inconsistencies and strange occurrences in a coup whose amateurish — almost kamikaze — nature preordained its failure and is now providing rich fodder for conspiracy theories,” Srivastava and Pitel wrote.

Kristin Fabbe and Kimberly Guiler, writing for the Washington Post, noted that the war of words in Turkey is being waged by two armies of conspiracy theorists. “On one side, government detractors are speculating that the attempted coup was a masterful, state-managed scheme to consolidate Erdogan’s power. On the other side, the AKP government is placing the blame for the coup attempt on perpetrators — real and imagined. The government’s list of villains ranges from bitter Erdogan rival Fethullah Gulen, a cleric who now lives in the United States, and other shadowy foreign ‘invaders’ to supporters of Turkey’s Ataturkist secular establishment and even the U.S. government. The skeptics are painting Erdogan as a megalomaniac tyrant bent on elected dictatorship; the believers are portraying him as a savior and victim.”

It is highly doubtful that the coup was initiated by Gulen, not because such action is necessarily beneath him, but because at the time Gulen immigrated to the US, his followers were estimated to number between 5 and 9 million, and had he launched the coup, it would not have collapsed overnight.

In June 1999, after Gulen had left Turkey, Turkish TV ran a video in which he said, “The existing system is still in power. Our friends who have positions in legislative and administrative bodies should learn its details and be vigilant all the time so that they can transform it and be more fruitful on behalf of Islam in order to carry out a nationwide restoration. However, they should wait until the conditions become more favorable. In other words, they should not come out too early.”

Gulen later complained that his words were taken out of context, and his supporters said the tape had been “manipulated.” Gulen was subsequently tried in absentia, and acquitted in 2008 under the new Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. But the ideas Gulen, or his manipulated recording, espoused, were just the kind of nourishment the Turkish conspiracy theorists everywhere needed to confirm their worst fears or highest aspirations, take your pick.

At the moment, President Erdogan is riding high on his conspiracy accusations: he has just suspended democracy in Turkey for three months (he could go three more, according to Turkish emergency laws), and his henchmen are busy weeding out pockets of resistance across Turkish society, regardless of their connection to the coup or obvious lack thereof. Many thousands of people have been sacked or arrested following the failed coup. According to a BBC report, Thousands of soldiers, including high-ranking generals, have been arrested, along with members of the judiciary. More than 50,000 state employees have also been rounded up, sacked or suspended and 600 schools closed. Academics have been banned from foreign travel and university heads have been forced to resign. The government has revoked the press credentials of 34 journalists.

European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini and Enlargement Commissioner Johannes Hahn on Thursday urged Turkey to respect the rule of law, rights and freedoms. The EU is “concerned” about developments after Turkey imposed its emergency rule, and about the measures taken so far in the fields of education, judiciary and media, which are “unacceptable,” Mogherini and Hahn said in a statement.

But it is doubtful Erdogan is going to interrupt his sacred mission of ridding Turkey of its clandestine Devin Devlet, real or imagined. And what if anything of the secular Turkish state will remain standing come September 2016, by the end of Erdogan’s own coup against his country’s democratic institutions, is anyone’s guess.


Tel Sheva Arab Student Indicted on Terror Conspiracy After Return From Jordan

Monday, February 8th, 2016

A 20-year-old Tel Sheva student, working as a substitute teacher, has been indicted on charges of conspiring with Salafi jihadists from various Arab nations.

The indictment was submitted Monday following a joint investigation by Israel Police and the Shin Bet Israel Security Service.

The Tel Sheva suspect indicted Monday allegedly agreed to help “jihadist activists” infiltrate Israel, according to the Shin Bet. He is also accused of having joined the ‘Salafi Jihadist’ organization.

“Three weeks ago, on January 18, the suspect was arrested upon his return from Jordan and was transferred for interrogation. During the investigation it was found that after leaving for Jordan the suspect made contact with a jihad operative from Tunisia.” The suspect is accused of agreeing to help the operative infiltrate Israel and conspiring to carry out military operations in Israel.

“It was also found that during this period he agreed to join the Salafi Jihad organization,” the Shin Bet said in its statement.

“During the course of the investigation the suspect revealed his connections to the organization and after the evidence was established, the indictment was submitted by the Southern District prosecutor,” the statement continued. The police have requested an extension of the suspect’s remand until the proceedings have been completed.

The Shin Bet issued a warning last year that some Israeli Arab students traveling abroad have been returning with unpleasantly new knowledge acquired outside their classes.

Israeli Arab students are increasingly becoming radicalized while touring or studying abroad, according to the Shin Bet.

Operatives from Da’esh (ISIS) and other terror groups have been recruiting Israeli Arabs while they are attending foreign universities in countries such as Jordan and Saudi Arabia.

Tel Sheva is a Bedouin township in the northern Negev. However, not all those living in the town are Bedouin. Some of the residents have intermarried with Palestinian Authority Arabs and others.

Most of the Bedouin in the northern Negev are Sunni Muslims. Salafi Islam is associated with groups that lean toward the teachings of Al Qaeda. It was the Salafis who were challenging Hamas in a power struggle for control over Gaza, for instance, until Da’esh (ISIS) arrived in the region.

Hana Levi Julian

New Conspiracy Theory Suggests Shin Bet Staged ‘Hate Dance’

Sunday, December 27th, 2015


Were the young men at the “hate dance” at the now infamous wedding invited guests?

Did Jewish extremists crash the now infamous wedding party and hoist guns, a firebomb and knives while stabbing a picture of the Arab baby who died in last summer’s arson-murder attack in Duma?

Or perhaps the Israel Security Agency (Shin Bet) staged the whole event?

The answer to these questions may depend on whether you believe that the Shin Bet prevented at least one of the suspects in the case from praying with tefillin and lighting Hanukkah candles. The Shin Bet has vehemently denied the allegations, which have not cropped up since, indicating they were entirely false.

It may depend on whether you believe the Shin Bet tortured the suspects, whatever “torture” means.

The latest counter-charge in what has become one of the ugliest Made in Israel sagas since the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzchak Rabin alleges that undercover cops crashed the party and staged the hate dance.

That would answer several questions, such as:

How did the “guests” bring in knives and semi-automatic rifles into the wedding hall?

Why was the fate dance filmed?

How did the video get into the hands of Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon?

The conspiracy theory, with plenty of reminders of the assassination of Rabin that was preceded by Shin Bet agent Avishai Raviv being filmed with a picture of Rabin in an SS uniform prior to Rabin’s murder, spread like wildfire Sunday.

The owner of the wedding hall reportedly claims that several men in civilian clothes and with security IDs entered the wedding hall towards end of the wedding party.

The entire dance appears to have lasted about a minute or two, with the most horrid scenes being repeated several times in the media.

The father of the groom insists that the “guests” were not invited and that he was in another part of the hall during the hate dance.

On the other hand, a bunch of screwballs sometimes crash a wedding party at the end, do their shtick and leave.

If the conspiracy theory is true, why would the Shin Bet go to such extreme means to discredit the guests? Is the Shin Bet so ticked off at being defamed by allegations of torture and banning prayer that it has to go such extremes just to “get back” at them?

Or perhaps the Shin Bet staged the hate dance so it would have a legal reason to demand the list of guests, giving them on one page the names of what may be the vast majority of some imagined nationwide Jewish terror cell that indeed is damaging the country and could incite a full-scale Palestinian Authority war if not snuffed out to the core.

There also is one side-effect to the latest conspiracy theory. Countless residents of Judea and Samaria have roundly criticized spreading the allegations, not because they are true or false but because they divert attention away from the number on task in Judea and Samaria, and that is to weed out the extremists who are growing under the feet of normal people.

Whatever your answers to the questions, remember one thing: Those who shut up are those who probably are the ones who can be believed.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Move Over Protocols of the Elders of Zion, Make Room for the Yinon Plan

Friday, September 25th, 2015

(JNi.media) Apparently, the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, one of the most notorious anti-Semitic fake documents of all time, has a sequel to cover conspiracies about the modern State of Israel, and many Jews do not realize that it exists.

The theory is based on an article that was published in the 1982 winter edition of Kivunim, a “Journal for Judaism and Zionism,” by Oded Yinon, who writes that the agreements in the Camp David Accords should not be honored, and discusses how Arab states will be eroded along ethnic and religious lines. This article might otherwise have been forgotten, but conspiracy theorists got their hands on it and ran with the ball. The theoretical stance outlined by Yinon was expanded perhaps beyond the originator’s wildest dreams, so much so, that Arab conspiracy theorists are now ready to blame internal discord in their countries on a Zionist plot to destabilize their nations and to gobble them up as part of a future Israeli colonialist empire.

Just this week, the so-called Yinon Plan was mentioned in an article published in the Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) with a title which, at first glance, seems to say something nice about Israel: “Israel Ready to Help Africans Produce Food.” This must be a way to produce click-bait shock for readers, since an IRNA headline reflecting well on Israel should raise readers’ eyebrows and hook them into reading the article. The very first sentence, though, makes clear the aim of the article is not to praise Israel: “For long (sic) Africa has been a missing link in the evolution of a Zionist plan to set up the so-called Greater Israel.” According to IRNA, Israel has its sights set on Africa’s oil reserves, its precious gems and diamonds, as well as uranium to increase its nuclear stockpile. The Iranian author claims to have retrieved this information from spy cables sent by the Guardian and Al Jazeera. It also said that Israel has been aggravating crises in African countries with a divide and conquer strategy, for which IRNA uses the “Yinon Plan” as evidence. Rather than a notion hatched out by a near-anonymous individual, IRNA asserts that the Yinon Plan has been policy from the moment Theodore Herzl, the founder of Zionism, first put his pen to paper. Occupying lands in 1967 was just a first step, IRNA insists, to a larger scheme of a complete Zionist stranglehold on the continent of Africa, and it is exploiting one conflict at a time.

The IRNA article cites the Global Research website for a handy summary of The Yinon Plan as “an Israeli strategic plan to ensure Israeli regional superiority. It insists and stipulates that Israel must reconfigure its geo-political environment through the balkanization of the surrounding Arab states into smaller, weaker states.” The summary goes on: “In Iraq, on the basis of the concepts of the Yinon Plan, Israeli strategists have called on a division of Iraq into a Kurdish state and two Arab states, one Sunni, one Shiite.” It sounds as if they think Vice President Joe Biden is Israeli, since this is exactly what he recommended for Iraq in a New York Times Op-Ed piece. Biden seemed to have been following the model of the agreement that ended the Bosnian war rather than Israeli strategists. The IRNA article then concludes by explaining the headline about Israelis helping the Africans to produce food (oh…that). The Israelis are sharing their water technology to help African countries deal with drought and produce food. But of course, that is just on the surface. What they are really doing must be akin to what that crafty Joseph in the Book of Genesis did as viceroy of Egypt—store up food as a way of manipulating those gullible Africans and placing them under Israeli control.


Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/move-over-protocols-of-the-elders-of-zion-make-room-for-the-yinon-plan/2015/09/25/

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