Archive for Zionism

The Top Five Ways Jewish Law Justifies Killing Civilians; #1: Civilians Are Really Combatants

Posted in Feature, Loon Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 12, 2011 by loonwatch

(image by Carlos Latuff)

Please make sure to read my disclaimer: Why Religious Zionism, Not Judaism, Is The Problem.

Read the Introduction: Does Jewish Law Justify Killing Civilians?

The first way in which Jewish law justifies targeting and killing civilians lies at the very heart of the issue.  The starting point of the just war theory (and international law) in regards to jus in bello (just conduct during war) revolves around the definition of combatant and civilian.  Jewish law (Halakha), as understood by mainstream Modern Orthodox Judaism in Israel, utilizes very different definitions for these two words.

International law, as enshrined in the Geneva Conventions, narrowly defines combatants as those who take direct part in hostilities of an armed conflict.  The T.M.C. Asser instituut in The Hague notes:

Article 3 [of the Fourth Geneva Convention] indicates that during non-international armed conflicts the persons who enjoy protection against the various forms of violence and infringement mentioned are ‘[p]ersons taking no active part in the hostilities, including members of armed forces who have laid down their arms and those placed hors de combat by sickness, wounds, detention or any other cause…’

Similarly, the following groups are protected under international law:

…medical officers, corpsmen, chaplains, contractors, civilian war correspondents and armed forces personnel who are unable to engage in combat because of wounds, sickness, shipwreck or capture (ie. POWs)…

In essence, “direct participation in hostilities” refers to using a weapon.  This is the fundamental underpinning of international law with regard to distinction and protection of civilians.

Jewish law, on the other hand, deems anyone who indirectly ”participates” in the hostilities to be a combatant and therefore fair game.  Those who ”materially contribute to the war effort” can be licitly targeted and killed.  On p.xvii of War and Peace in the Jewish Tradition, Prof. David Shatz writes:

[Rabbi Michael] Broyde also raises the issue of who is a combatant.  In his view, Halakha maintains that anyone who materially contributes to the war effort is a combatant and thus a fair target.

Based on this “definition,” the modern-day state of Israel takes a very expansive view of “combatant,” legitimizing the targeting and killing of Palestinian civilians.  We clearly see an example of the great latitude taken in this regard by modern-day Jewish religious authorities in the case of the Qibya Massacre.  Rabbi Shaul Israeli, considered  “one of the most important rabbis of the Religious Zionist school of thought,” penned one of the most influential monographs on this subject, entitled “The Qibia Incident in Light of Halakhah.”  In it, he legitimized indiscriminate violence against civilians.  This tract, as we shall see, has defined the Religious Zionist view towards the issue of distinction.

The esteemed rabbi and professor Michael J. Broyde writes on p.22 [note: all citations are from War and Peace in the Jewish Tradition, unless otherwise indicated]:

Indeed, the earliest modern discussion of this topic was presented by R. Shaul Israeli in 1954 in response to the killing of civilians by Israel Defense Forces Unit 101 at Kibia (Qibya) in 1953.  R. Israeli argues that civilians who conspire to assist in the undertaking of military operations can be killed through the pursuer rationale, as they are materially aiding the murderers.

He continues:

Indeed, R. Israeli goes even further, and seems to adopt the view that those who simply extend support to terror–by encouraging acts of violence with mere words–can be labeled combatants as well.  This is not, R. Israeli posits, any form of collective punishment, as only people who are guilty (whether of murder or conspiracy to commit murder) are actually being punished.

The reference to “the killing of civilians by Israel Defense Forces Unit 101 at Kibia (Qibya) in 1953″ refers to the Qibya Massacre, in which sixty-nine Arabs were slaughtered–of which two-thirds were women and children.  Prof. Avi Shlaim, a prominent Israeli historian at Oxford University, writes on p.91 of The Iron Wall:

[Acting defence minister Pinhas] Lavon’s order was executed by Unit 101, a small commando unit created in August to carry out special tasks. Unit 101 was commanded by an aggressive and ambitious young major named Ariel (“Arik”) Sharon.  Sharon’s order was to penetrate Qibya, blow up houses, and inflict heavy casualties on its inhabitants.  The full and macabre story of what happened at Qibya was revealed only during the morning after the attack.  The village had been reduced to a pile of rubble: forty-five houses had been blown up, and sixty-nine civilians, two-thirds of them women and children, had been killed.  Sharon and his men claimed that they believed that all the inhabitants had run away and that they had no idea that anyone was hiding inside the houses.  The UN observer who inspected the scene reached a different conclusion: ”One story was repeated time after time: the bullet splintered door, the body sprawled across the threshold, indicating that the inhabitants had been forced by heavy fire to stay inside until their homes were blown up over them.”

There are too many issues to comment on here.  There is the obvious inhumanity and depravity of the IDF–the Most Moral Army in the World™–firing upon civilians to keep them in their houses and then blowing up those houses on top of them.  Prof. Martin E. Marty writes on p.286 of Fundamentalisms Observed that, in the context of war, Halakha would indeed permit tactics “such as blowing up homes of parents of Arabs who harm Jews.”

What is truly amazing, however, is that this scenario–the Israelis blowing up and bulldozing Palestinian homes–is a pattern repeated throughout Israel’s short history.  All this was done to terrorize the Palestinian population, in order to get more Palestinians to flee their homes to make way for Israeli settlers.  This perfectly fits the quintessential definition of terrorism, yet all we ever hear about is Hamas this or Hamas that.

Then, there is the fact that the war criminal responsible for carrying out this massacre, Ariel Sharon, would later be elected Israel’s prime minister.  Such is the moral state of the modern day state of Israel–war criminals and terrorists are voted into power.  One continually hears about how evil the Palestinians are for voting in Hamas to power, while hearing almost nothing about how Israelis have routinely voted terrorists and war criminals into office.

Another interesting thing to comment on is that discussions of Ariel Sharon and Israel’s war crimes focus on events such as the Sabra and Shatila Massacre, in which Israel only played a support role.  It is my opinion that the focus on the Sabra and Shatila Massacre is a mechanism that deflects attention away from those massacres that were directly carried out by Israeli soldiers.  There are countless such instances, so why the emphasis on Sabra and Shatila?

In any case, it was following the Qibya Massacre that Rabbi Shaul Israeli published a monograph entitled “The Qibia Incident in Light of Halakhah,” which articulated the halakhist view towards the targeting and killing of “hostile civilian populations.”  It was reprinted with some expansions under the title “Military Actions for the Protection of the State” in chapter 16 of Amud ha’Yamini.  This work has had lasting influence in modern halakhic discussions in Israel, and came to form the majority view of the Religious Zionist movement, which is the dominant form of Orthodox Judaism in Israel.  On p.32 of War and Peace in the Jewish Tradition, Rabbi Michael Broyde refers to Rabbi Shaul Israeli’s article as a “thoughtful article” that is “the starting point” for such discussions. Commenting on a vast collection of Jewish articles on “war-related issues,” Broyde notes that “the overwhelming number of [them] agree with the starting point of R. Israeli.”

But perhaps we ought to look at a dissenting opinion to see what is contained in Rabbi Shaul’s tract.  Prof. Ya’acov Blidstein published an article entitled The Treatment of Hostile Civilian Populations: The Contemporary Halakhic Discussion in Israel in which he criticizes R. Israeli’s view, saying:

[Rabbi Shaul] Yisraeli develops a systematic and extensive discussion concerning the issue of the attitude to be taken toward a hostile civilian population that supports and encourages violent, murderous acts.

He notes that Rabbi Israeli legalized the killing of entire civilian populations “for their support and encouragement of terrorist acts,” instead of just those actually involved in terrorist acts. ”People who provide the murderer with support and encouragement, but do not take an active, directly conspiratorial part in the act itself” are licit to kill.  Therefore, “‘supportive and encouraging’ civilian population[s]” become “combatants” and can be killed en masse.

Prof. Blidstein notes that “the exact meaning of the terms ‘encourage’ and/or ‘support’” are left wide open.  That the state of Israel takes the widest possible meaning is apparent by the incident in which the view itself was first articulated by R. Israeli: in the Qibya Massacre, “two-thirds of them [were] women and children.”  How children and babies can be guilty of “encouragement and support” of terrorism and be licitly killed by the Israeli military is as much a mystery to me as the Canaanite or Amalekite children and babies being killed in the Bible for the “crime of idolatry.”

Blidstein concludes:

It seems to me that the general direction revealed here is quite clear.  Most of the authors surveyed read the halakhic sources in a manner that allows for extremely forceful action toward various Arab populations, whether these populations encourage and support hostile activity, or only have Arab ethnic identity.

He notes ruefully:

We have also encountered authors who attempted to limit this tendency, but these seem to be less than fully effective in their treatment, and are, within the school surveyed, in a minority.

Prof. Blidstein says his “general thesis” is

that there is a tendency in this school [Religious Zionism] to legitimate more aggressive activity against the civilian population, and to read rather narrowly those restrictions intended to limit and circumscribe such activity.

The fast and loose way in which Israel strips non-combatants of their protected civilian status is very disturbing.  Here, we have the justification of a brutal massacre of 69 civilians of which two-thirds were women and children–an act of state terrorism in its purest form–based on the claim that these were “civilians who conspire[d] to assist the undertaking of military operations”–those who supposedly “simply extend[ed] support to terror–by encourag[ing] acts of violence with mere words.”  In reality, however, there is no way to reasonably determine even this much, and it is simply assumed that the civilians “encouraged and supported” terrorism.

The truth is that the state of Israel routinely strips civilians of their protected status by claiming that they “materially contribute[d] to the war effort.”  This is a very easy charge to levy, requiring very little proof and certainly the issue of proof becomes moot when the civilians have already been killed.  It is especially convenient considering that most indigenous populations indirectly support resistance movements against the occupiers, and the Palestinians can hardly be expected to be different in this regard.

By this all-encompassing definition of combatant, the American women factory workers during World War II who produced parts for planes and tanks would be classified as “combatants” and become licit to kill.  By this definition, American journalists who wrote in support of the war against Nazi Germany would become “combatants” and become fair game.  The millions of American citizens who bought war bonds would similarly become “combatants.”  When we apply this standard to ourselves, it seems truly unthinkable, immoral, and evil.  But when we apply it to Palestinians, it becomes something acceptable.

*  *  *  *  *

To be fair, Israeli apologists from “liberal, secular” Judaism voice similar ideas.  Case in point: Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz, who is one of Israel’s greatest defenders from the “liberal, secular” spectrum of the Jewish faith.  Dershowitz is credited as being “Israel’s single most visible defender” and “the Jewish state’s lead attorney in the court of public opinion.”

One would hope that as a law professor and self-professed liberal Alan Dershowitz would adhere to international law by respecting the idea of distinction and protection of civilians.  Unfortunately, one would be quickly disabused of such a notion by reading Dershowitz’s writings.  He argues that the word civilian is “increasingly meaningless.”  Dr. Norman Finkelstein documents Dershowitz’s morally repugnant ideas on p.xvi of Beyond Chutzpah:

The main target of Dershowitz’s “reassessment of the laws of war” has been the fundamental distinction in the laws of armed conflict between civilians and combatants.  “The preservation of this sharp dichotomy,” Yoram Dinstein has written [a world-renowned expert on international law and the laws of war], “is the main bulwark against methods of barbarism in modern warfare.”  However, ridiculing what he deems the “increasingly meaningless word ‘civilian’” and asserting that, in the case of terrorist organizations like Hezbollah, “‘civilianality’ is often a matter of degree, rather than a bright line,” Dershowitz proposes to replace the civilian-combatant dichotomy with a “continuum of civilianality”:

Near the most civilian end of this continuum are the pure innocents–babies, hostages and others completely uninvolved; at the more combatant end are civilians who willingly harbor terrorists, provide material resources and serve as human shields; in the middle are those who support the terrorists politically, or spiritually.  [189]

[189] He goes so far as to suggest that combatants might deserve more solicitude than civilians in time of war, depending on “the precise nature of the civilian’s ‘civilianality.’” (Preemption, p.247)

Prof. Alan Dershowitz is but one voice in a pro-Israeli movement trying to “revise” international law in order to strip civilians of their protected status (more on this later).  By “revising” the definition of “civilian” to include those who provide “indirect” assistance to the war effort–or who “materially support” the war (even if by “mere words”)–these pro-Israeli defenders are taking a sledgehammer to international law.

One can imagine the absolute outrage if the shoe was on the other foot–if pro-Palestinian groups were justifying the targeting of Israeli civilians for their “material support” of the war effort and military occupation.  If, in the words of these Orthodox Jewish authors, “mere words” in support of the combatants stripped civilians of their protected status–or if, in the words of the “liberal, secular” Jewish law professor Alan Dershowitz, “politically[] or spiritually” supporting the war effort reduced one’s “civilianality”–then the majority of the Israeli population would no longer be considered purely civilian; in that case, wouldn’t Hamas or Hezbollah be legitimated in targeting and killing them?

But as Dr. Finkelstein notes on p.xvii, Dershowitz “imagines that this revision won’t apply to Israel because ‘the line between Israeli soldiers and civilians is relatively clear.’”  Finkelstein asks:

But is this true?  Israel has a civilian army, which means a mere call-up slip or phone call separates each adult Israeli male from a combatant.

As Finkelstein quips presciently on p.xviii, “it remains to consider Dershowitz’s own location on the continuum of civilianality.”  Wouldn’t being “Israel’s single most visible defender” constitute providing “material support” to Israel’s military occupation of the Palestinians?  Using the elusive and expansive word “material support” one is able to strip most civilians of their protected status.

During the Gaza War, in which Israel massacred scores of civilians, the Israelis used this “extended definition” of “combatant.”  Amos Guiora, who served as a military lawyer in Israel for 19 years, wrote:

Israel declared war on an organisation [Hamas], and by extension on all those involved in that organization – active and passive alike.

Prof. Alan Dershowitz is certainly correct about one thing: Israel’s apologists, from the Orthodox Jewish to secular sectors, have successfully rendered the word civilian “increasingly meaningless.”  By extending combatant status to civilians who “indirectly” contribute to the war effort, the Israeli state is able to justify killing civilians whenever it wants: wherever Israeli rockets land, there is a Palestinian terrorist.  Ergo, Israel never targets anyone but terrorists.

The principle of distinction and protection of civilians is the basis for war ethics under international law: could it be said then that Jewish law is fundamentally at odds with the just war theory?  Wouldn’t this be the conclusion our anti-Muslim Zionist opponents would arrive at if this were about Islam?

Next: The Top Five Ways Jewish Law Justifies Killing Civilians; #2 Collective Punishment is Kosher (I)

Why Religious Zionism, Not Judaism, Is The Problem

Posted in Loon Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 10, 2011 by loonwatch

This is my disclaimer to the series entitled Does Jewish Law Justify Killing Civilians?

Pro-Israeli pundits often argue that they have a problem with “Islamism,” which they define as the politicization of the religion of Islam.  Prof. Jeffrey Herf of the University of Maryland clarifies, for example, that he doesn’t have a problem with Islam but with “Islamism,” a religio-political ideology enjoining Muslims to reestablish the pan-Islamic Caliphate.

If pro-Israeli propagandists insist that “political Islam”–which they call Islamism–is the problem, then in a similar vein am I arguing that Religious Zionismnot Judaism, is the problem.  It is the mixing of the political ideology Zionism with Judaism that I criticize.  I believe criticizing Judaism en toto would be Anti-Semitic.  Judaism, without the infusion of Zionism into it, is–in my opinion–a wonderful religion.  I believe it would be absolutely detestable to take my criticisms of Religious Zionism and use them to justify vilifying Judaism as a whole.

*  *  *  *  *

The dangers of falling into Anti-Semitism are very real.  Historically, Anti-Semitism has been a major problem, and it continues to be in some parts of the world today.  One of the primary ways in which Anti-Semites unfairly targeted Jews was to vilify Halakha, digging up intolerant views in the rabbinical tradition to smear Judaism with.

But herein lies an irony: many Zionist Jews are now joining Anti-Muslim Christians in vilifying the Islamic tradition in a very similar way.  Once Halakha was the target of bigots; today, it is Sharia.  Rabbi Eliyahu Stern has written an excellent article about this topic, entitled Don’t Fear Islamic Law in America.

I will be applying the same standards our opponents apply to the Islamic tradition to the Jewish one, to show that Judaism is equally vulnerable to such criticisms.  It is hoped that this exercise will encourage people of Judeo-Christian background to be more hesitant in vilifying and targeting Islam.  This is purely an exercise in thought, a what if scenario (what if we applied the same standards to your religion as you do onto others?) designed to be the antidote to religious and cultural arrogance.

By clarifying that this constitutes an “exercise in thought” one should know that I am not saying Judaism is XYZ because of ABC, but rather simply that if you insist on arguing that Islam is XYZ due to ABC then–based on your own logic–Judaism and Christianity are also XYZ because they too have ABC.  This is a what if? and an if-then argument.

*  *  *  *  *

This is not to say, however, that religion has nothing to do with the matter.  I am extremely critical of Religious Zionism, which has a very real and deleterious impact in world affairs.  Religious Zionists are now among the most influential voices in Israel’s hawkish right-wing, using religion to justify even more regressive policies towards the Palestinians.  Dr. Claudia Baumgart notes in Democracy, Diversity, and Conflict: Religious Zionism and Israeli Foreign Policy that Religious Zionism “started to play a major role” in Israeli foreign policy by the late 1960′s.  Today, its impact is absolutely pernicious.

Religious Zionism went even further than secular Zionism, declaring the settlement of Palestinian land–all of Palestine–a mitzvah, a religious obligation under Jewish law.  While it may be possible to convince secular Zionists of the need for a two-state solution, this is not possible with Religious Zionists who believe it is forbidden in their religion–nay, it is a blasphemy of the highest order and greatest magnitude–to cede even one inch of Eretz Israel to the Palestinians.  This is why Religious Zionism is a major impediment to peace in the region.

Much like how Radical and Ultra-Conservative Islam is a problem (“Islamists” as some incorrectly say), so too is Religious Zionism a major problem.  I agree with Dr. Baumgart’s assessment that “religion is not an independent cause of conflict in and between states.  But it can be an important intervening variable…”  In other words, Religious Zionism did not independently and all by itself create the problem of Israeli oppression of Palestinians, but it certainly is one important causative factor among a myriad of others.

This is of course not much different than my view of Radical and Ultra-Conservative Islam.  Some critics may assume that I do not think Radical and Ultra-Conservative Islam are part of the problem–that only American and Israeli foreign policy are to blame.  This is incorrect: I believe that terrorism is the result of a myriad of factors, and although American and Israeli neo-colonialism certainly tops the list, Radical and Ultra-Conservative Islam plays an important role as well.

Criticism of Religious Zionism should not tarnish Judaism as a whole no more than criticism of Radical and Ultra-Conservative Islam should tarnish Islam as a whole.  One should stay clear of the bigotry that would compel oneself to smear an entire faith for the actions of a particular strand of a religion.

*  *  *  *  *

My need to criticize Religious Zionism is also founded on the link between Zionism and Islamophobia. Pro-Israeli apologists are often anti-Muslim; conversely, anti-Muslim bigots are almost invariably pro-Israeli. In fact, Islamophobes fanatically support the state of Israel, which they see as the embodiment of the Crusader state in the heartland of the infidel Muslim world.  Meanwhile, Israelis see the Islamophobes as useful to their cause against their Muslim foes.  Often, however, there is no distinction between the two: Zionist Islamophobes form a large chunk of the anti-Muslim camp.  Pamela Geller, an extremist Zionist Islamophobe, is a case in point.  In light of this, it is important to hold Religious Zionism to the same standard that these Zionists/Islamophobes so mirthfully apply to Islam.

*  *  *  *  *

One may quite reasonably criticize my choice of title, “The Top Five Ways Jewish Law Justifies Killing Civilians:” after all, it does not make it clear that I am herein criticizing the Halakha of Religious Zionists, not of all Jews.  This is acceptable criticism, which I agree with in principle.

However, remember that this article series is a “thought exercise:” the entire purpose is to show how Judaism and Christianity could not possibly live up to the high standards anti-Muslim Jews and Christians insist on applying to Islam.  Our Islamophobic opponents certainly do not differentiate between different interpretations of Sharia.  They take Radical and/or Ultra-Conservative interpretations of Islamic law as The Sharia.  Likewise, I will take the Orthodox Jewish interpretation of Halakha–as understood by “mainstream” Modern Orthodoxy–to be The Halakha.  Then, we will see how much anti-Muslim Jews and Christians like it.  How will Pamela Geller respond to holding her religious faith up to the same standards she insists upon for Islam?

*  *  *  *  *

Having said all of this, the primary reason I chose to speak about Halakha is that it is our opponents themselves who invoked the comparison between the supposedly peaceful Judeo-Christian tradition on the one hand and the supposedly warlike Islamic tradition on the other.  This argument–that the modern-day Judeo-Christian interpretations are overwhelmingly peaceful, whereas those of Islam are warlike–is raised by both the King and Queen of Islamophobia, Robert Spencer and Pamela Geller.

Robert Spencer’s The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam (and the Crusades) invokes this comparison multiple times.  For example, he says on p.31:

When modern-day Jews and Christians read their Bibles, they simply don’t interpret the passages cited as exhorting them to violent action against unbelievers. This is due to the influence of centuries of interpretive traditions that have moved away from literalism regarding these passages. But in Islam, there is no comparable interpretive tradition. The jihad passages in the Qur’an are anything but a dead letter.

Meanwhile, the Queen of Islamophobia published a letter by David Yerushalmi which said:

[T]he historical comparison between the response to sharia in this country and Europe’s objection to Jewish law centuries earlier is a result of poor scholarship and faulty logic.  Jewish law, certainly since the destruction of the Jewish Commonwealth almost two thousand years ago, has had nothing to do with political power or the desire to effect dominion over another people. 

To the contrary, the opposition to sharia is the fact that throughout the Muslim world, sharia is the call to an exclusive Islamic political power with hegemonic designs (see the two most prominent surveys cited here: http://mappingsharia.com/?page_id=425).  The war doctrine of jihad is part and parcel of sharia.  It is alive and well as such throughout the Muslim world.

Therefore, I am left no choice but to compare Islamic understandings of religious law to their Jewish counterparts.  This comparison was foisted upon me by my opponents.  There is no way to disabuse the King and Queen of Islamophobia (and their loyal subjects) of their claims except to respond in the way I am.

Naturally, “bystanders” will be caught in the crossfire.  Good-hearted, fellow Jews may be offended by such an article series that takes such a critical look at Jewish law.  This is why I explained my absolute reluctance to go down this path in my opening disclaimer.  But, the constant barrage of Islamophobic polemics, encouraged by Israeli activists, convinces me that this is something unavoidable.  Thus it is so, that with a grudging heart, I proceed forth.

*  *  *  *  *

Update I:

It is true that Ultra-Orthodox Judaism within Israel is just as disquieting as Modern Orthodox Judaism (as I will show in a follow-up article). This is due to their unthinking acceptance of Zionist ideology.  On the other hand, those Ultra-Orthodox Jews who forcefully reject Zionism, such as the Neturei Karta, do not justify Israel’s killing of Palestinian civilians.  Perhaps then it would be more appropriate to say that Zionism, not just Religious Zionism, is the problem.  Once again, however, it should be stressed that it is the mixing of a racist political ideology with religion that is to be condemned, not the religion itself.

Update II:

A reader who posts under the user name “Just Stopping By” gave some valid criticism in the comments section, arguing that it would be too broad a generalization to categorize all Religious Zionism as one way–that dissenting opinions do exist.  Admittedly, this article series does deal in some generalizations, but these are acceptable, I think, in the context of this being a “thought exercise.”  One could, for example, hardly expect Islamophobes to recognize that even in Ultra-Conservative Islam there exists nuance.

Having said that, it is fair criticism–especially in an article intended to be a disclaimer and explanation of my viewpoints–that I should recognize the existence of a spectrum of views in Religious Zionism, instead of viewing it as one rigid monolith.  This I readily admit, even though I of course disagree with Religious Zionism as a whole, just as I do Ultra-Conservative Islam.

Update III:

Two additional points need to be addressed here: the first is my choice to use Carlos Latuff’s artwork.  I was unfamiliar with him until I started searching for images to use in my article series, and realized that I’ve used one of his images in the past (without properly accrediting him).  My use of some of his cartoons should not be seen as an endorsement of his political views, which are not very clear to me.  One can only speculate what a cartoonist’s political views are based on his comics.  The images I chose are very applicable to the article series, and that is why I used them.  Nothing more, nothing less.  To give credit where credit is due, I do think Carlos Latuff is a very gifted artist and political cartoonist.

I have seen accusations against him by pro-Israeli apologists that he is an Anti-Semite.  These do not seem to be anything other than the typical Israeli tactic of accusing Israel’s critics of Anti-Semitism in order to vilify and silence them.  One critic claimed that Latuff uses images of “hook-nosed Jews.”  However, this seems baseless to me: notice the perfectly normal nose of the Israeli soldier below.  One could hardly expect a critic of Israel’s war crimes to portray IDF soldiers as anything but evil.  This hardly amounts to Anti-Semitism.  Would these pro-Israeli apologists desire political cartoonists to draw Israeli soldiers with roses coming out of their butts?

The second accusation I have seen against him is that his cartoons use the Star of David.  However, he explained to the Guardian:

Part of the supposed ‘evidence’ for my antisemitism is the fact that I’ve used the Star of David, which is a symbol of Judaism . . . But check all my artworks – you’ll find that the Star of David is never drawn alone. It’s always part of the Israeli flag. Yes, it’s a religious motif, but in Israel it has been applied to a state symbol; and it’s the institutions of the state – the politicians and the army – that I’m targeting. Including the flag of Israel in a cartoon is no more an attack on Judaism than including the flag of Turkey would be an attack on Islam.

The tactic of smearing critics of Israel with the “Anti-Semitic” slur is perfectly pictured by Latuff himself:

I do think some of Latuff’s comics may be over the top and are beyond my comfort level, such as this depiction of an Israeli soldier, which is not Anti-Semitic but just too hyperbolic for me.  One can understand that an artist might want to push the boundaries and invoke strong reactions from his work.  In any case, do I have to agree with every single one of a political cartoonist’s comics before I can reproduce any of them?

The other issue is my reliance on Dr. Norman Finkelstein’s work.  He is one of the world’s leading experts of the Israel-Palestine conflict, and it thus seems obvious why I would draw on his writings.  Despite my deep respect for his scholarship and his person, I must however issue a clear disclaimer distancing myself from his equivocation in response to a question about Palestinian terror attacks against Israeli civilians.  I categorically reject all attacks targeting civilians, no matter who does them.  After all, my entire article series is designed to point out the hypocrisy of anti-Muslim Jews and Christians who condemn Muslims for what they themselves endorse (i.e. the targeting and killing of civilians).  If I would condone such terror attacks, this would be another layer of hypocrisy.

Along these lines, I might as well also state my views on Hamas and Hezbollah, since pro-Israeli apologists and Islamophobes use this as a sort of litmus test to silence opposition (DO YOU CONDEMN HAMAS?  DO YOU?).  Let it be known then that I condemn and reject Hamas and Hezbollah.  Although I recognize the right of the Palestinian people to defend their land and resist occupation (to deny them this right while accepting the right of the occupying power to “defend itself” is the height of colonialist mentality), under no circumstances–none whatsoever–is one allowed to target and kill civilians.  Even if Hamas and Hezbollah were to categorically renounce such tactics (and back up their words with actions), I would still not support these groups, which–like the Israeli and Jewish groups I will discuss–hold extremist religious views.

This does not mean that I do not “understand” why some occupied Palestinians would resort to such tactics.  (One cannot say the same for Israelis, who are the occupiers.)  “Understand” here is to be understood in the sense that one “understands” why a criminal was led to a life of crime due to an abused childhood.  This “understanding” does not equate to condoning, accepting, or justifying.

The desire to support Hamas and Hezbollah is born out of emotionalism, not principled ethics.  Many Muslims feel the need to side with “the Muslim side,” just as many Jews feel compelled to support “the Jewish state.”  I do not support groups or states, but rather ethics and principles.  Groups and states will always let you down; ethics and principles won’t.

Islamophobia, Zionism and the Norway Massacre

Posted in Loon Politics, Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 2, 2011 by loonwatch

A very well written piece from Ali Abunimah. The connection between Zionism and the rise in Islamophobia was explored by LW when we wrote an exclusive piece exposing the funding apparatus of Islamophobia, The Connection between Zionism and Organized Islamophobia–The Facts.

In the piece we elaborated on how Aubrey Chernick, a premiere funder of Islamophobes has also donated to, amongst other groups, the ADL which is quite literally taken apart in the article below.

Ali Abunimah writes,

The continued lurch towards extremism in Israel, and among many of its supporters, underscores the truth that anyone who wants to dissociate from ultranationalism, racism and Islamophobia, also has to repudiate Israel’s state ideology, Zionism.

It may not be true that Zionism needs to be absolutely repudiated for one to “dissociate from ultra-nationalism, racism and Islamophobia,” however criticism of Zionism should not be conflated with anti-Semitism or seen as a desire to destroy Israel.

Islamophobia, Zionism and the Norway massacre

by Ali Abunimah (AlJazeeraEnglish)

In a Washington Post op-ed last week, Abraham Foxman, the National Director of the Anti Defamation League, likened the hateful ideology that inspired Anders Behring Breivik to massacre 77 innocent people in Norway to the “deadly” anti-Semitism that infected Europe in the 19th and 20th centuries.

This is a parallel that I, and many others who have been observing with alarm the rise of anti-Muslim incitement in the US and Europe, have made frequently.

Does this mean that Foxman – head of one of the most hardline and influential pro-Israel lobby groups – has found common ground with the Palestine solidarity movement?

That would be a good thing if it helped to fight the growing scourge of racist incitement. But by criticising the ideology that inspired Breivik, and pointing the finger at a few of its purveyors, Foxman appears to be trying to obscure the key role that he and some other pro-Israel advocates have played in mainstreaming the poisonous Islamophobic rhetoric that has now – Foxman himself argues – led to bloodshed in Norway.

Pointing the finger

Foxman describes, in his Washington Post article, “a relatively new, specifically anti-Islamic ideology” which Breivik used to justify his attack. “Growing numbers of people in Europe and the United States subscribe to this belief system”, Foxman writes, “In some instances it borders on hysteria. Adherents of this ideological Islamophobia view Islam as an existential threat to the world, especially to the ‘West.’”

“Moreover”, Foxman explains, “they believe that leaders and governments in the Western world are consciously or unconsciously collaborating to allow Islam to ‘infiltrate’ and eventually conquer democratic societies.”

Just such irrational beliefs underpin the hysteria about “Creeping Sharia” – the utterly baseless claim that Muslims are engaged in a secret conspiracy to impose Islamic law on the United States. So prevalent has this delusional belief become, that legislative efforts have been mounted in about two dozen American states, and have been passed by three, to outlaw Sharia law.

Foxman points the finger – as others have rightly done – at extreme Islamophobic agitators such as Robert Spencer and Pamela Geller, co-founders of “Stop Islamisation of America” – whose hate-filled writings Breivik cited in his manifesto.

So far, Foxman has it right. But then he drops a clue about what really frightens him:

“One bizarre twist to Breivik’s warped worldview was his pro-Zionism – his strongly expressed support for the state of Israel. It is a reminder that we must always be wary of those whose love for the Jewish people is born out of hatred of Muslims or Arabs.”

Who does Foxman think he is kidding? There is nothing “bizarre” about this at all. Indeed Foxman himself has done much to bestow credibility on extremists who have helped popularise the Islamophobic views he now condemns. And he did it all to shore up support for Israel.

After Norway, Foxman may fear that the Islamophobic genie he helped unleash is out of control, and is a dangerous liability for him and for Israel.

Zionists embrace Islamophobia after 9/11

Many American Zionists embraced Islamophobic demagoguery after the September 11, 2001 attacks.

Their logic was encapsulated in then-Israeli opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu’s notorious assessment that the attacks – which killed almost 3,000 people – would be beneficial for Israel.

Asked what the 9/11 atrocities would mean for US-Israeli relations, Netanyahu told The New York Times, “It’s very good”, before quickly adding, “Well, not very good, but it will generate immediate sympathy” and would “strengthen the bond between our two peoples, because we’ve experienced terror over so many decades, but the United States has now experienced a massive hemorrhaging of terror”.

In order for Israel and the United States to have the same enemy, the enemy could not just be the Palestinians, who never threatened the United States in any way. It had to be something bigger and even more menacing – and Islam fit the bill. The hyped-up narrative of an all-encompassing Islamic threat allowed Israel to be presented as the bastion of “western” and “Judeo-Christian” civilisation facing down encroaching Muslim barbarity. No audience was more receptive than politically influential, white, right-wing Christian evangelical pastors and their flocks.

Sermons of hate

“Since the terrorist attack on the Twin Towers in New York and the Pentagon, on September the 11th, American politicians have tripped over themselves to state that the vast majority of Muslims living in the United States are just ordinary people who love America and are loyal to America. Is that true? Is that really true?”

That is the question Pastor John Hagee, leader of an evangelical megachurch and founder of Christians United for Israel (CUFI), posed to his followers whom, he said, were becoming more concerned as “mosques appear across the nation”.

In a series of sermons soon after the 9/11 attacks which he titled “Allah and America,” Hagee began a relentless campaign of inciting his followers to fear and hate Muslims and Islam (videos of Hagee’s sermons can be found on YouTube.

Hagee has emerged over the past decade as one of the most prominent Christian Zionist supporters of Israel. His sermons are broadcast on dozens of TV channels and he influences millions of Americans.

As his “Allah and America” sermons progressed, Hagee’s answers became clear: “In the Qur’an, those who do not submit to Islam should be killed. That means death to Christians and death to Jews. Now I ask you, is that tolerant? Is that peaceful? Is that a sister faith to Christianity?”

After reading and distorting “selected verses from the Qur’an, which is the Islamic bible, in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks, to increase our understanding of the basis of their faith,” Hagee claimed, “the Qur’an insists that no matter how mighty a nation is, it must be fought until it embraces Islam.”

And, apparently knowing that his congregation may hate and fear only taxes as much as Muslims, Hagee told them that the Qur’an’s message to Muslims is “when you get into the government, tax Christians and Jews into poverty until they submit willingly to Islam. Sounds like the IRS [Internal Revenue Service], but not faith.”

Then he offered this warning: “Politicians who are telling America that Islam and Christianity are sister faiths are lying to the people of this country. There is no relationship of any kind between Islam and Christianity. None whatever.”

At every step, Hagee exhorted the faithful that Islam and Muslims were not only a danger to the United States, but specifically to Israel – a country to which they should offer unconditional support.

This sounds a lot like the ideology of generalised fear and loathing of Muslims that Foxman condemned in the Washington Post.

Islamophobic fearmongering, demonisation and dehumanisation, from the likes of Hagee, and bellowed continuously on cable channels and radio stations across America, enabled the US government to legitimise invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq and expand wars from Pakistan to Yemen to Somalia. These took the lives of hundreds of thousands of Muslims, under the guise of a “war on terror” – all the while as presidents hosted White House iftars.

What makes Breivik’s attack so shocking and new is that he turned the Islamophobic rhetoric against the white citizens of the Euro-American “homeland”, those whom the officially-sanctioned military slaughter of Muslims abroad was ostensibly meant to protect.

Foxman welcomes Hagee in from the fringes

While Hagee offered his zealous support to Israel (he founded CUFI in 2006), not all of Israel’s supporters returned the love. Rabbi Eric Yoffie, president of the Union for Reform Judaism, warned in 2007 that the pro-Israel Jewish community’s embrace of far-right ideologues would drive away young, socially-liberal Jews from supporting Israel. He feared it could endanger the bipartisan support Israel always enjoyed in the United States by identifying it with what Yoffie saw as extremist elements.

Yoffie focused his criticism on Hagee, “who is contemptuous of Muslims, dismissive of gays, possesses a truimphalist theology and opposes a two-state solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict.” He worried about the warm reception Hagee was receiving at conferences of Jewish Federations all over America.

One influential figure who didn’t share Yoffie’s fears about Hagee was Foxman, who told a reporter from the Religion News Service in March 2008, “I don’t have to agree with anybody 100 per cent in order to welcome their support, as long as their support is not conditioned on my agreeing with them on everything or accepting them 100 per cent.”

When it came to light during the 2008 US presidential campaign that Hagee had said in a 1999 sermon that Hitler had been sent by God to drive the Jews to Israel, Republican presidential candidate Senator John McCain repudiated Hagee’s endorsement. But Foxman was quick to offer Hagee absolution, issuing a statement accepting the pastor’s “apology”.

Enabling Islamophobia

Foxman’s embrace of Hagee does not even mark the lowest point of his dalliance with Islamophobic extremists. Recall last summer – in the run up to the US midterm elections – the hate campaign targeting a proposal for an Islamic community centre planned for lower Manhattan in New York City.

Dubbed the “Ground Zero Mosque” by its critics, it became a cause celebre for the Republican Party – and some gutless Democrats – who claimed that building the institution close to the former site of the World Trade Centre would be an insult to the memory of victims.

The hate campaign was notable for unprecedented anti-Muslim rhetoric that exceeded anything heard in the immediate aftermath of the 2001 attacks. While New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg earned plaudits for defending the right of American Muslims to build the Islamic centre where they wanted, Foxman and his Anti-Defamation League caused consternation when they backed the bigots and came out against the project.

And who was it who helped take a little-noticed plan for a community centre and turn it into “a national political spectacle?” None other than Pam Geller and Robert Spencer – as the Washington Post reported at the time- the same Islamophobic extremists whom Foxman now blames for fueling the kind of hatred that inspired Breivik to kill.

Rescuing Zionism from Islamophobia

Foxman’s claim that Breivik’s support for Israel is “bizarre” is a brazen attempt to deflect attention from the alliance that Foxman and leading Israeli politicians have made with the most racist Islamophobes – ones Foxman accurately likens to anti-Semites.

To be clear, Israel and Zionism have always been racist toward Palestinians and other non-Jews, otherwise how else could they justify the expulsion and exclusion of millions of Palestinians solely on the grounds that they are not Jews? It is the virulent, specifically anti-Muslim trend that has been particularly pronounced since 2001.

But the rot has already gone too far. As a recent article in Der Spiegel underscores, Europe’s far-right anti-Muslim demagogues have found many allies and admirers in Israel, particularly within the upper echelons of the ruling Likud and Yisrael Beitenu parties.

And the feeling is mutual: European ultra-nationalists, such as Dutch Islamophobe Geert Wilders, have put support for Israel’s right-wing government at the centre of their politics.

Islamophobia welcome in Israel

While the world was united in horror at Breivik’s massacre, several commentators in Israel’s mainstream media were much more understanding of his motives, if not for his actions. An oped on Ynet, the website of Israel’s mass circulation Yediot Aharonot, stated that “the youth movement of the ruling Labour Party” – of which many of the youths murdered on Utoya island were members – “is an organisation of anti-Israeli hate mongers”.

An editorial in The Jerusalem Post offered sympathy for Breivik’s anti-Muslim ideology and called on Norway to act on the concerns expressed in his manifesto, while an op-ed published by the same papersaid that the youth camp Breivik attacked had been engaged in “a pro-terrorist program”.

Meanwhile, an article in the American Jewish newspaper The Forward noted that on many mainstream internet forums, Israelis expressed satisfaction with Breivik’s massacre and thought that Norway got what it deserved.

Clear warning signs

Foxman cannot claim he didn’t see any of this coming. Back in 2003, I interviewed him for an article about the inclusion of Yisrael Beitenu and other parties in Israel’s governing coalition, parties that openly advocated the expulsion of Palestinians. Foxman’s attitude was as indulgent toward those racists and would-be ethnic cleansers as he was to Hagee’s hate-mongering a few years later, and it is those same Israeli parties that have forged the closest ties with European and American anti-Muslim extremists.

The continued lurch towards extremism in Israel, and among many of its supporters, underscores the truth that anyone who wants to dissociate from ultranationalism, racism and Islamophobia, also has to repudiate Israel’s state ideology, Zionism. Universal rights and equality for all human beings are concepts that are anathema to both.

With his panicked and belated jump onto the anti-Islamophobia bandwagon, Foxman hopes we won’t notice, and that organisations like his can continue defending Israel’s racism free from the stain of the deadly anti-Muslim extremism they have done so much to promote.

Ali Abunimah is author of “One Country, A Bold Proposal to End the Israeli-Palestinian Impasse”, and is co-founder of The Electronic Intifada.

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Al Jazeera’s editorial policy.

The Norway massacre and the nexus of Islamophobia and right-wing Zionism

Posted in Loon Violence, Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on July 25, 2011 by loonwatch

A great piece from MondoWeiss.

The Norway massacre and the nexus of Islamophobia and right-wing Zionism

by Alex Kane (MondoWeiss)

Details on the culprit behind yesterday’s massacre in Norway, which saw car bombings in Oslo and a mass shooting attack on the island of Utoya that caused the deaths of at least 91 people, have begun to emerge.  While it is still too early for a complete portrait of the killer, Anders Behring Breivik, there are enough details to begin to piece together what’s behind the attack.

Although initial media reports, spurred on by the tweets of former State Department adviser on violent extremism Will McCantslinked the attacks to Islamist extremists, it was in fact an anti-Muslim zealot who committed the murders.  An examination of Breivik’s views, and his support for far-right European political movements, makes it clear that only by interrogating the nexus of Islamophobia and right-wing Zionism can one understand the political beliefs behind the terrorist attack.

Breivik is apparently an avid fan of U.S.-based anti-Muslim activists such as Pamela GellerRobert Spencer and Daniel Pipes, and has repeatedly professed his ardent support for Israel.  Breivik’s political ideology is illuminated by looking at comments he posted to the right-wing site document.no, which author and journalist Doug Sanders put up.

Here’s a sampling of some of Breivik’s comments:

And then we have the relationship between conservative Muslims and so-called “moderate Muslims”.

There is moderate Nazis, too, that does not support fumigation of rooms and Jews. But they’re still Nazis and will only sit and watch as the conservatives Nazis strike (if it ever happens). If we accept the moderate Nazis as long as they distance themselves from the fumigation of rooms and Jews?

Now it unfortunately already cut himself with Marxists who have already infiltrated-culture, media and educational organizations. These individuals will be tolerated and will even work asprofessors and lecturers at colleges / universities and are thus able to spread their propaganda.

For me it is very hypocritical to treat Muslims, Nazis and Marxists differ. They are all supporters of hate-ideologies…(page 2-3)

What is globalization and modernity to do with mass Muslim immigration?

And you may not have heard and Japan and South Korea? These are successful and modern regimes even if they rejected multiculturalism in the 70′s. Are Japanese and South Koreans goblins?

Can you name ONE country where multiculturalism is successful where Islam is involved? The only historical example is the society without a welfare state with only non-Muslim minorities (U.S.)…(page 7)

We have selected the Vienna School of Thought as the ideological basis. This implies opposition to multiculturalism and Islamization (on cultural grounds). All ideological arguments based on anti-racism. This has proven to be very successful which explains why the modern cultural conservative movement / parties that use the Vienna School of Thought is so successful: the Progress Party,Geert Wilders, document and many others…(page 13)

I consider the future consolidation of the cultural conservative forces on all seven fronts as the most important in Norway and in all Western European countries. It is essential that we work to ensure that all these 7 fronts using the Vienna school of thought, or at least parts of the grunlag for 20-70 year-struggle that lies in front of us.

The book is called, by the way 2083 and is in English, 1100 pages).

To sums up the Vienna school of thought:

-Cultural Conservatism (anti-multiculturalism)

-Against Islamization

-Anti-racist

-Anti-authoritarian (resistance to all authoritarian ideologies of hate)

-Pro-Israel/forsvarer of non-Muslim minorities in Muslim countries

– Defender of the cultural aspects of Christianity

– To reveal the Eurabia project and the Frankfurt School (ny-marxisme/kulturmarxisme/multikulturalisme)

– Is not an economic policy and can collect everything from socialists to capitalists…(page 20)

Daniel Pipes: Leftism and Islam. Muslims, the warriors Marxists Have Been praying for.

link to www.youtube.com

The following summarizes the agenda of many kulturmarxister with Islam, it explains also why those on death and life protecting them. It explains so well why we, the cultural conservatives,are against Islamization and the implementation of these agendas… (page 27)

We must therefore make sure to influence other cultural conservatives to come to our anti-rasistiske/pro-homser/pro-Israel line. When they reach this line, one can take it to the next level…(page 41)

Breivik’s right-wing pro-Israel line, combined with his antipathy to Muslims, is just one example of the European far-right’s ideology, exemplified by groups such as the English Defense League (EDL).  The EDL, a group Breivik praisesalong with the anti-Muslim politician Geert Wilders, share with Breivik an admiration for Israel.

Anti-Muslim activists and right-wing Zionists share a political narrative that the Israeli/Palestinian conflict is a “clash of civilizations,” one in which Judeo-Christian culture is under attack by Islam.  Israel, in this narrative, is the West’s bulwark against the threat that Islam is posing to Europe and the United States.  The nexus of Islamophobia and right-wing Zionism was clearly on display during last summer’s“Ground Zero mosque” hysteria, which culminated in a rally where Geller and Wilders addressed a crowd that included members of the EDL waving Israeli flags.

This comment by Breivik is one example of the twisted way in which Islamophobia and a militant pro-Israel ideology fit together:

Cultural conservatives disagree when they believe the conflict is based on Islamic imperialism,that Islam is a political ideology and not a race.

Cultural conservatives believe Israel has a right to protect themselves against the Jihad.

Kulturmarxistene refuses to recognize the fact that Islam’s political doctrine is relevant and essential. They can never admit to or support this because they believe that this is primarily about a race war – that Israel hates Arabs (breed).

As long as you can not agree on the fundamental perceptions of reality are too naive to expect that one to come to any conclusion.Before one at all can begin to discuss this conflict must first agree on the fundamental truths of Islam’s political doctrine.

Most people here have great insight in key Muslim concepts that al-taqiiya (political deceit), naskh (Quranic abrogation) and Jihad. The problem is that kulturmarxister refuses to recognizet hese concepts.They can not recognize these key Muslim concepts. For if they do so erodes the primary argument that Israel is a “racist state” and that this is a race war (Israelis vs. Arabs) and not defense against Jihad (Kafr vs. Ummah)

Breivik’s admiration for the likes of Daniel Pipes is also telling, and should serve as a warning that, while it would be extremely unfair and wrong to link Pipes in any way to the massacre in Norway, Breivik’s views are not so far off from some establishment neoconservative voices in the U.S.  For instance, both Pipes and Breivik share a concern with Muslim demographics in Europe.  In 1990, Pipes wrotein the National Review that “Western European societies are unprepared for the massive immigration of brown-skinned peoples cooking strange foods and maintaining different standards of hygiene…All immigrants bring exotic customs and attitudes, but Muslim customs are more troublesome than most.”

Pipes was appointed by the Bush administration to the U.S. Institute of Peace, andsits on the same board than none other than the Obama administration’s point man on the Middle East, Dennis Ross.

Pipes’ and Breivik’s concern about Muslim and Arab demographics also recall the remarks of Harvard Fellow Martin Kramer, who infamously told the Herzliya Conference in Israel last year that the West should “stop providing pro-natal subsidies for Palestinians with refugee status…Israel’s present sanctions on Gaza have a political aim, undermine the Hamas regime, but they also break Gaza’s runaway population growth and there is some evidence that they have.”

Adding to the Israel/Palestine angle here is the fact that the day before the attack on the island of Utoya, a Palestine solidarity event was held there.

Why Breivik, and his accomplices if he had any, would attack young Norwegians remains unclear.  But it probably had something to do with Breivik’s belief that European governments, and the Norwegian government, were run by “Marxists” allied with Islamist extremists who were bent on destroying Europe through “multiculturalism.”

Of course, support for Israel and its current right-wing policies do not automatically translate into support for extremist right-wing violence.  But Palestinians, and the larger Arab and Muslim world, know far too well the consequences of Islamophobia and far right-wing Zionism.  Now, it seems that Norwegians do too.  While much remains to be learned about the attacks in Norway, it has exposed the dangerous nexus of Islamophobia, neoconservatism and right-wing Zionism, and what could happen when the wrong person subscribes to those toxic beliefs.

Alex Kane, a freelance journalist currently based in Amman, Jordan, blogs on Israel/Palestine at alexbkane.wordpress.com.  Follow him on Twitter @alexbkane.

Bryan Fischer: No longer alone in Bigotry

Posted in Feature, Loon Pastors, Loon Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 22, 2011 by loonwatch

GOP Presidential candidate Herman Cain has revealed himself to be, for various reasons, the biggest bigot and buffoon in the race. He kicked up a firestorm with his recent comments on Fox News Sunday in support of the “right” to ban American mosques. Apparently, Cain thinks that freedom of religion means freedom to ban religions:

CAIN: They could say that. Chris, lets go back to the fundamental issue that the people are basically saying they’re objecting to. They’re objecting to the fact Islam is both a religion and a set of laws, Sharia law. That’s the difference between any one of our other traditional religions where it’s just about religious purposes. The people in the community know best, and I happen to side with the people in Murfreesboro.

WALLACE: You’re saying any community, if they want to ban a mosque?

CAIN: Yes. They have a right to do that. That’s not discriminating based upon religion.

Discriminating against Muslims is not discrimination because they’re Muslims! Kind of like the argument we hear from racists that discrimination against black people is not discrimination because black people are more likely to be criminals.

Many religious leaders took Cain to task for his comments, but not everyone. In fact, more than enough far right wingers are gleefully embracing his call to deny American Muslims their fundamental American rights.

Bryan Fischer is a Christian fundamentalist who is one of the loudest voices of intolerance on the right wing. For example, he has argued that Muslims should not serve in the military, law-abiding Muslim immigrants should be “sent back home,” and all American mosques should be banned:

Permits, in my judgment, should not be granted to build even one more mosque in the United States of America. This is for one simple reason: each Islamic mosque is dedicated to the overthrow of the American government.

Did you get that? Each Islamic mosque is “dedicated” not to the pillars of Islam (faith, prayer, charity, and fasting) but to the “overthrow of the American government.” As if all the Muslims of every denomination (Sunni, Shi’ite, Sufi, liberal, conservative, etc.) are acting with one will, one goal, like the Borg (resistance is futile, you will be assimilated). He must have read that somewhere in the Protocols of the Elders of Mecca.

Anyway, it is this last point that has Bryan Fischer super excited: he is no longer alone in his Bigotry now that a big shot GOP candidate has legitimated his effort to ban all mosques. On what grounds can they so brazenly defy the First Amendment? The bogus talking point about Islam being a political ideology, not a religion:

In point of fact, in Islam the church IS the state. And since Islam allows no room for freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of assembly, freedom of conscience and equal rights for women, it’s view of culture is so bizarrely un-American as to be dangerous and destructive to civilized society in all its forms.

This is quite ironic coming from a man whose goal in life is to impose his backward religious opinions on an unwilling society. Don’t mind our homegrown Christian fundamentalists who reject separation of church and state. They don’t count.

In reality, the Gallup polls of the Muslim world reveal the exact opposite of Fischer and Cain’s claims:

•Large majorities cite the equal importance of democracy and Islam to the quality of life and progress of the Muslim world. They see no contradiction between democratic values and religious principles.

•Political freedoms are among the things they admire most about the West.

•Substantial majorities in nearly all nations say that if drafting a new constitution, they would guarantee freedom of speech.

•Most want neither theocracy nor secular democracy but a third model in which religious principles and democratic values coexist. They want their own democratic model that draws on Islamic law as a source.

•Significant majorities say religious leaders should play no direct role in drafting a constitution, writing legislation, determining foreign policy, or deciding how women dress in public.

Another poll reports that less than 1% of Egyptians want the radical fusion of religion and state like Iran:

Egyptians… express little interest in recreating their country in the image of Iran, as has been the fear among some Western commentators. Less than 1% say the Islamic Republic should be Egypt’s political model, and most Egyptians think religious leaders should provide advice to government authorities, as opposed to having full authority for determining the nation’s laws. The majority of residents in the Arab world’s most populous nation desire a democracy informed by religious values, not a theocracy.

The numbers concerning Muslim attitudes toward women are equally destructive to Fischer’s arguments:

•Majorities in most countries believe that women should have the same legal rights as men: They should have the right to vote, to hold any job outside the home that they qualify for, and to hold leadership positions at the cabinet and national council levels

•Majorities of men in virtually every country (including 62 percent in Saudi Arabia, 73 percent in Iran, and 81 percent in Indonesia) agree that women should be able to work at any job they qualify for.

•In Saudi Arabia, where women cannot vote, 58 percent of men say women should be able to vote.

•While Muslim women favor gender parity, they do not endorse wholesale adoption of Western values.

So, while scientific polling of the Muslim world (not to mention American Muslims) reveals broad support for democratic principles, a rejection of theocracy, and support for women’s rights, that won’t stop the far right from parroting the thoroughly debunked but politically potent talking point that Islam is somehow uniquely anti-democratic, oppressive to women, and dangerous.

Bryan Fischer is the face of the grassroots prejudice to which Herman Cain is appealing and which will not likely be criticized by the rest of the GOP candidates. American right-wing politics has sunk to a new low. No longer is shredding the First Amendment considered fringe, crazy talk.

Fischer is not a lone anti-freedom bigot anymore. The GOP is right there with him.

The Unholy Alliance: how Israeli wingnuts befriended Russian Hitlerophiles

Posted in Loon Politics with tags , , , , , , , on July 18, 2011 by loonwatch

Disturbing alliance between Right-wing Zionists and Russian Nationalists. (Hat tip: SR)

The Unholy Alliance: how Israeli wingnuts befriended Russian Hitlerophiles

by Sergey Romanov (LGF)

On an Israeli Russian-language site IzRus we can see this news item from 12.07.2011:

Russian nationalists met in Israel with a right-wing Zionists

One of the leaders of Russia’s National Democratic Alliance, who visited Israel together with his colleagues at the invitation of religious-right-wing Zionists, came to the conclusion that the two political forces have a lot in common …

Since last week, in Israel there is a group of moderate [ethnic] Russian nationalists from Russia, arrived here at the invitation of the religious-right bloc “Ihud ha-Leumi” (“National Unity”). The leaders of an interregional public association of the National Democratic Alliance (established in March 2010) made several trips to the Holy Land, visited the Knesset, and the memorial complex “Yad Vashem”. Following the visit, co-chairman of the movement Ilya Lazarenko came to the conclusion that the Russian nationalists and right-wing Zionists have much in common. “We are very much in common, and first of all – rejection of violent Islamism, which is a threat to civilization – he said to the portal IzRus. – We also have some ideological overlap associated with the objectives of nation-building and its operation.”

Russian political leaders in recent years emphasize the multi-ethnic country and its citizens need to instill ethnic and religious tolerance. However, Lazarenko is convinced that in Russia today it is not only appropriate but also very important to talk about national component. “The national problem in Russia – this is primarily a[n ethnic] Russian problem, all the rest follow. The problem is that [ethnic] Russians don’t have their own national state, their homeland. Just as Jews didn’t have it for a long time,” – said Lazarenko.

The Russian version of the Israeli 7th channel – Arutz Sheva – that caters to the religious right-wing segment of the population provides further details of the visit.

www.7kanal.com/news.php3?id=283314

Yesterday in Knesset leaders of the Russian National Democratic Alliance (NDA) met with the representative of the bloc “National Unity” MK Aryeh Eldad, head of the parliamentary lobby against Islamic fundamentalism and terrorism.

Member of the “Union of Professors for strong Israel” Dr. Michael Pavlov
accompanied the group and translated during the meeting.

The meeting took place in a warm, friendly atmosphere, – said Dr. Pavlov. Aryeh Eldad was interested in the political platform of NDA and the opinion of the alliance about Israel and to certain Israeli politicians. In response to Ilya Lazarenko said he had been impressed by the visit to the Deputy Minister of Negev and Galilee Ayoob Kara. Mr. Lazarenko also warmly praised the bloc “National Unity”, believing members of this unit to be the real patriots of Israel.

[…]

Ilya Lazarenko said he hoped for further cooperation with the patriotic forces of Israel. MK Aryeh Eldad assessed the meeting as productive.

On the photo in the article are NDA’s Ilya Lazarenko (right) and Alexey Shiropayev(left).

www.7kanal.com/news.php3?id=283299

For one week representatives of Russian public movement “National Democratic Alliance” (NDA) were in Israel.

Guests from Russia visited the memorial complex “Yad Vashem”, toured the West Bank, walking on Hebron and Jerusalem, and had a conversation at the “Round Table” in Netanya, with the extra-parliamentary and informal social and political organizations and movements, including “The Jewish Memorial “and the” Altalena – New Zionist revisionists.”

Guests from Russia, accompanied by Shlomo Lensky, editor of “7th channel” [Arutz Sheva] Tuvia Lerner and Dr. Michael Pavlov. Conversation with the deputy minister Ayoob Kara was also recorded by television reporters from “Israel Plus” channel (the same day, two representatives of the NDA were guests at the “Open Studio” show with David Cohn).

Says Dr. Michael Pavlov: “About a month ago I was contacted by my friend, asking for help in organizing the visit to Israel of the movement of Russian National-Democrats. I was a little confused, because, in my understanding a Russian nationalist is a drunken member of Pamyat society, brandishing an ax, shouting “Beat the Jews – save Russia.” However, looking at information about the movement of the national democrats, I was pleasantly surprised. It turns out that for a long time the movement takes the Israel-friendly stand, and was one of the few Russian organizations that fully supported Israel during “Operation Cast Lead.”

Yesterday there was a meeting of the co-chairmen of the NDA Alexey Shropayev and Ilya Lazarenko and the movement’s press secretary Alexander Galitskij and representatives of the St. Petersburg branch of the movement with the Deputy Minister development of Negev and Galilee Ayoob Kara. During the meeting, Mr Kara told about the blood relationship of the Druze – and specifically of his family – with the people and the State of Israel, as well as his vision of the Israeli national policy and current global threats. Russian leaders of the National Democratic Alliance Alexey Shiropayev and Ilya Lazarenko told about similar aspects of political life in Russia and have found many points of mutual understanding.

The Deputy Minister told guests that he had only recently returned from a trip to Europe, where he had met with representatives of right-wing national parties [Vlaams Belang/Dewinter – S.R.]. “Some accuse me of having links with the ultra-Right movements and leaders. But I say – Israel must find allies to fight the scourge of Islamic fundamentalism. Left-wing leaders can not understand what I explain to them for many years: we have no partner for negotiations among the Arab countries – they do not want the existence of a Jewish state at all. This is proved by our retreat from Lebanon and the Gaza Strip, despite the fact that Israel returned to the boundaries defined by the UN, “Hezbollah” and Hamas failed to cease hostilities against Israel. Every day I read the Arabic-speaking press and see all the duplicity: while in English the Islamists broadcast their love of peace, then in Arabic – they call for Islamic expansion and the destruction of Israel.”

[…]

Russian National Democrats were satisfied with the visit to Israel. “In Russia, most of the media lie about the Jewish occupation and discrimination against the Arab population. We visited Hebron, and have not seen any signs of occupation. On the contrary – most people in the Russian provinces would envy those conditions which are at the Arab residents of Hebron. We have seen in Israel the only effective model of national state in the world, preserving the democratic structures, and we believe that Russia has a lot to learn from Israel in this field “- the movement’s leader Alexey Shiropayev said.

Shlomo Lensky (deputy adviser to Michael Ben-Ari on ‘Russian’ Affairs) who accompanied the NDA group to the Knesset (as well as on a trip to Hebron, and to the “round table” in Netanya) noted that both for the Russian nationalists and for the Israeli right it was very important to break down stereotypes. “It is believed that if you’re a Russian nationalist – automatically you’re an anti-Semite and a fascist, etc., etc., and if you’re an Israeli right-wing you are always an extremist, a fanatic, a schismatic, and both – marginal. Meeting with Deputy Minister Ayoob Kara was an indication that it is the people who value and care about their country’s national interest who will find common language, who have a space for dialogue and may cooperate in the fight against common enemies, without being burdened with an inferiority complex and a variety of prejudices, “- said Shlomo Lensky.

Ayoob Kara has expressed willingness and even the desire to visit Russia as an official guest of the NDA, and said he would prefer St. Petersburg – a city about which he had heard many things, but, unlike other cities in Russia, and he hadn’t visited. “I am pleased to become a mediator between Russia’s NDA and similar national parties in Europe” – said Ayoob Kara.

OK, so who are Ilya Lazarenko and Alexey Shiropayev?

Ilya Lazarenko is best known as the founder of the so-called “Society of Nav“, a defunct pseudo-occult organization. Another name – “Church of the Great White Race”. It is described as a “racist ariosophic Gnostic-neo-Pagan organization which calls for the “rebirth of the Russian people as a part of the Aryan nations of the white race”. The organization “copies several elements of the KKK symbolics – gowns, pointy hats – but are very hostile to Abrahamic religions”. Lazarenko called this society “the Russian KKK”. See this link for some photos of their symbols, including the swastika.

In an old interview with Moscow News (quoted here) Lazarenko explained why the organization was founded on April 20:

April 20th was pointed out by the prevailing astrological situation. This is pure coincidence. Although we have nothing against Hitler. He was a good man, loved animals, children and his people.

Lazarenko claims: “We’re not fascists”, but then adds:

If we come to power, we will immediately introduce martial law, arrest the current government, restore the death penalty, will make Moscow a restricted area. We will revive the slogan “Beat the kikes, save Russia!” Modern rotten society is unable to resist. Like a goat on a string, it will follow the leader.

Lazarenko has a blog at LiveJournal, “ariognostic”. Here are a couple of his comments:

igni-ss.livejournal.com/268535.html?thread=8354039

2009-05-06 04:01 pm UTC

No trolling, actually.
That the NSDAP regime was Judeophobic is a fact.
That 6 million of specially killed Jews during the Holocaust are a myth – it is also a fact.
The method of “proving” the “6 million” is pure hysterics, nothing more. This myth doesn’t hang together.

ru-gnostik.livejournal.com/102455.html?thread=9303 59

2007-02-02 10:17 pm UTC
It would be more reasonable for Jews to admit that 80% of the “Holocaust” consist of inventions of the Allied war propaganda. The war propaganda was never “objective”. […]

Being in sound mind, it is difficult to believe that “death camps” were effectively killing Jews up until the 70s, to get to the 6 million victims.

Nowadays even an attempt to get to the bottom of this causes hysterics.

[…]

There is no evidence of intended, massive extermination of any groups by national criteria in NS Germany.

Now Shiropayev. You can look at the Wiki article about him through Google Translate, or at this note. He was writing essays in defense of swastika back when he was still a Christian. He is well-known for his radical poetry. Some samples are here (use Google translate). Two examples of raw translation:

The sacred springOver Moscow – stormy expanse.
People and greenery come to life.
The day is such – the birthday of Adolf.
It means – the joy is in the sky.

Celestial strings rattle,
Continuing as flows of rain.
With undiluted bass of Perun
The Führer’s name responds.

Führer is with us – neither black bones
Nor the poor product of Hollywood.
He is the air in discharges of energy,
Which is clear as the Buddha.

He is a breath of spring tillage,
Washed clean by the triumphant sky.
He is the zenith with the Kolovrat of Salvation
And the jubilant roar of Messerschmitt.

Collapsed on Moscow as a flood
And as a pagan baptism Spree –
From the volatile mountains of airy Europe,
From the peaks of cloudy Hyperborea.

Zeus strikes the golden aegis,
Without giving cheap warranties.
This Spartan name – Hitler –
Comes to life under the sun, as an antique.

Führer with us! In the glow of a halo,
Shuddering roofs and grounds,
The sun-faced messenger of Olympus,
Who awakened the mystery of the Race.

Führer is alive! Wheel of Helios
Like a tsunami will crumple paranoia.
No, not the flocks of geese from Laos –
It is the souls of heroes are returning.

What is left is the shifting pile
From banners, legions and steel –
The Doric world of thunder and sun
Will rise from the hot ashes.

(C) Alexey Shiropaev, 2001

From another poem:

Greetings, our stern happiness,
The steel of space, the steep sky!
Catacomb symbols of swastikas
Hallow the concrete.

And from yet another (2005):

Singing “Horst Wessel
I go out on the trail.
I hanged a Communist
On a high oak.[…]

How easy and pleasant it is
To pass through the woods,
While falling apart into the spots
Of the SS camouflage.

In his 2002 book “Prison of the Nation” [pdf] Shiropayev blames the Ukrainian famine of 1933 on the “Jewish Kremlin”. He writes:

But what can one say about nobility and aristocracy, if even in XIXth century the Jews, this, using Menshikov’s words, “Asiatic, extremely dangerous, extremely criminal people” have introduced their blood in the the Russian Imperial family?[…]As we see, the St. Petersburg emperors have inherited from the Moscow tsars the tradition of interracial sodomy. But the asiatic element was the new one. Instead of Tatar princes – Jewish bankers.

And further:

So, during the pre-October decades an organic “changing of the guard” in the elite layer of the Russia-Eurasia took place. “Steppe” element replaced by “desert” element, which was – because of many religio-historical features – far more anti-Aryan. Moreover, in contrast to the “nomads”, the “desert children” had developed an ideology of Talmudic racism, which proclaims religio-racial superiority of the Jews over “goyim” and, accordingly, the right of the “people of God” to rule and even the massively physically exterminate the “heathens”. Add to this the Jewish control over a significant part of international financial capital and the world’s masonic structures. All this did not promise the white population of Russia anything good. Tatarism must have seemed like “flowers”. This is what happened. Compared to Trotsky, Batu-Khan was an Asiatic liberal.[…]

Jews entered the Project to pursue their own goal – the power over the world, and that means primarily the Aryan world.

[…]

It was’t difficult for Jews to push Russia into war with Germany.

[…]

The organizers and main implementers of the the Tsar’s murder were, of course, the Jews.

[…]
By killing the Romanovs the Jews were exterminating the living memory about mother Europe, about Rus.

[…]

After the murder of White tsars, a genocide of the white population began on a monstrous scale. The second after oprichnina, but incomparably more powerful and fanatical Asiatic terror apparatus was created – the Cheka, in which acronym is hidden the Hebrew word meaning “slaughterhouse for cattle”, i.e. for all non-Jews-goyim according to the Talmud race theory.

And so it goes on, and on, and on…

Finally, some photos: 123.

These are the people who were invited by Ichud Ha-Leumi to Israel, whom Lensky and Lerner of Arutz Sheva promised to promote while they were visiting. What’s worse, judging by this interview an Arutz Sheva reporter took from Shiropayev after the latter visited Yad Vashem, AS people knew about his background – he is asked about his views about Hitler, about his poems (he, of course, dismisses it as mere poetry, says he grew out of it, and dishes out a boilerplate speech about the dangers of Islamism).

More ironically, these people are complete political non-entities in Russia – they have no influence, so this visit cannot be excused even as “Realpolitik”. In fact, it serves as a legitimization of these people in Russia.

Inside Torat Hamelech, the Jewish Extremist Terror Tract Endorsed by State-employed Rabbis

Posted in Loon Rabbis, Loon Violence with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 18, 2011 by loonwatch


We have been covering the story about “The King’s Torah” for quite some time now, it is quite popular amongst the religious right in Israel. Can you imagine if texts such as this were found in an Islamic book called the “The Caliph’s Sharia’”?,

I. A gentile must not kill his friend, and if he has killed, he must die.

II. The prohibition “thou shalt not commit murder” refers to a Jew who kills another Jew.

III. A Jew who kills a gentile is not required to die.

Replace “gentile” with “kafir” and Jew with “Muslim,” and imagine the reaction from the Islamophobesphere.

Inside Torat Hamelech, the Jewish extremist terror tract endorsed by state-employed rabbis

by Max Blumenthal

Last year, I reported on a convention of top Israeli rabbis who gathered to defend the publication of Torat Hamelech, a book that relied on rabbinical sources to justify the killing of gentiles, including infants “if it is clear that they will grow up to harm us.” The most prominent rabbinical endorsers, Kiryat Arba’s chief rabbi Dov Lior and Yaakov Yosef, had dismissed police summons at the time, insisting that man’s law could not touch the halakha. A year later, in late June, the Israeli police finally arrested Lior for his role in endorsing and promoting the book.

Riots broke out almost immediately in the wake of the arrest, with mobs of religious Zionists burning tires and attempting to storm the Israeli Supreme Court compound. Fearing more riots and with sales of Torat Hamelech surging, the police handled Rabbi Yosef with kid gloves, requesting he come in for questioning but not arresting him. In the end, the state neglected to remove Lior, Yosef, or any other state-employed rabbi from his position for endorsing Torat Hamelech.

Why is Torat Hamelech so explosive? Yuval Dror, an Israeli journalist and academic, excerpted some of the book’s most incendiary passages. What appeared was Jewish exclusivism in its most extreme form, with non-Jews deemed permissible to kill, or Rodef, for the most inconsequential of wartime acts, including providing moral support to gentile armies. The book is a virtual manual for Jewish extremist terror designed to justify the mass slaughter of civilians. And in that respect, it is not entirely different from the Israeli military’s Dahiya Doctrine, or Asa Kasher and Amos Yadlin’sconcept of “asymmetrical warfare.” The key difference seems to be the crude, almost childlike logic the book’s author, Rabbi Yitzhak Shapira, marshals to justify the killing of non-Jewish civilians.

Here are passages from Torat Hamelech, as excerpted by Dror and translated by Dena Bugel-Shunra:

II. Thou Shalt Not Commit Murder

Maimonides wrote in the Halachas of Murder, Chapter A, Halacha A:

He who kills one soul of Israel violates a prohibition, as it is said “thou shalt not commit murder, and if he committed murder maliciously, in front of witnesses, his death shall be by the sword…

It is therefore made explicit that the “thou shalt not commit murder” prohibition refers only to a Jew who kills a Jew, and not to a Jew who kills a gentile, even if that gentile is one of the righteous among the nations… we have derived that from the verse “thou shalt not commit murder”, one cannot learn that there is a prohibition on killing a gentile.

(Page 17-18)

VIII. Conclusion

I. A gentile must not kill his friend, and if he has killed, he must die.

II. The prohibition “thou shalt not commit murder” refers to a Jew who kills another Jew.

III. A Jew who kills a gentile is not required to die.

IV. The prohibition on a Jew killing a gentile derives from the fact that a gentile is not allowed to kill a gentile.

(Page 27)

I. A gentile is killed for one death, and with one judge

A gentile who violates one of the seven rules [of Noah] must be killed, and he is killed based on the word of one witness and with one judge and with no warning.

II. A witness becomes a judge

For the Sons of Noah [gentiles] the witness can himself be a judge. This mean: if one person saw the other committing a crime – he can judge him and kill him for this, as he is the witness and he is the judge… Moses [moshe rabbenu] saw the Egyptian hitting a man of Israel, and killed him for that. So there Moses is the witness and is the judge, and this does not delay the carrying out of the law upon the Egyptian.

(Pp. 49-50)

What transpires from these matters is that when you judge a gentile for crimes that he has committed – you must also consider the question of whether he has repented, and if he has – he must not be killed… moreover: it is better that the gentile repent than that we kill him. If we come upon a gentile who does not abide by the Seven Laws [of Noah], and the importance of abiding by them can be explain to him, so he will repent – we would prefer to choose that path, and not judge an kill him.

(page 70)

It is explained in Yerushalmi [codex] that when a [child of] Israel [a Jew] is in danger of his life, as people tell him ‘kill this particular gentile or you will be killed’ – is permitted to kill the gentile to save himself… and the [interpreters of the law] Rashi and Maimonides say that the law of requiring to die rather than commit the crime is only valid in case of a Jew against another Jew, not in the case of a Jew against a stranger living among them… It is clear from these statements that when the choice is between losing the life of a stranger living among them and losing the life of a child of Israel [a Jew] – the simple decision is to permit [the killing].

(Pp. 157-158)

When the question is of a life of a gentile weighed against the life of a child of Israel [Jew], the initial proposal returns, which is that a Jew can violate  law in order to save himself, as what is at stake is the soul [life] of a Jew – which supersedes the entire Torah – in contrast with the life of a stranger living among us, which does not permit any Torah prohibition to be superseded.

(page 162)

To save the life of a gentile, one does not violate the Sabbath rules, and it is clear from this that his life is not like the value of the life of a child of Israel, so it may be used for the purpose of saving the life of a child of Israel.

(page 167)

An enemy soldier in the corps of intelligence, logistics, and so forth aids the army that fights against us. A soldier in the enemy’s medical corps is also considered a “rodef” [villain who is actively chasing a Jew], as without the medical corps the army will be weaker., and the medical corps also encourages and strengthens the fighters, and helps them kill us.

A civilian who supports fighters is also consider Rodef, and may be killed… anyone who helps the army of the evil people in any way, strengthens the murderers and is considered to be Rodef.

(page 184)

III. Support and encouragement

A civilian who encourages the war – gives the king and the soldiers the strength to continue with it. Therefore, every citizen in the kingdom that is against us, who encourages the warriors or expresses satisfaction about their actions, is considered Rodef and his killing is permissible. Also considered Rodef is any person who weakens our kingdom by speech and so forth.

(p. 185)

We are permitted to save ourselves from the Rodef people. It is not important who we start with, as long as we kill the Rodef people, and save ourselves from the danger they pose. And see for yourself: if you say that the fact that there are many of them brings up the question of whom to start with, and that that question is supposed to delay us from saving for ourselves – why it stands to reason: the existence of any one of them postpones the salivation, and this is the reason to treat each and every one as a complete Rodef, and to kill him, so he will not cause this ‘life-threatening’ question…

Whoever is in a situation where it is clear that he will chase and danger us in the future – it is not necessary to give it fine consideration as to whether at this moment, exactly, he is actively helping the chasing [harassment?] of us.

(Pp. 186-187)

X. People who were forced to partner with the enemy

We have dealt, so far, with gentiles whose evil means that there is a reason to kill them. We will now turn to discuss those who are not interested in war and object to it with all force…

We will start with a soldier, who is party to fighting against us, but is doing so only because he has been forced by threats to take part in the war.

If he was threatened with loss of money and such things – he is completely evil. There is no permission to take part in chasing and killing due to fear of loss of money, and if he does so -he is a Rodef in every definition thereof.

And if he was threatened that if he would not participate in the war, he would be killed – according to the MAHARAL [rabbi]… just as he is permitted to kill others – so, too, can others (even gentiles)kill him, so we will not die. And for this reason, according to the MAHARAL, it is simply evident that such a soldier may be killed.

And according to the Parashat Drachim [rabbi? Or possibly book of law?] – he must not participate in the murdering even if he must give his life due to this. And if he does so [participates] – he is evil and may be killed, like any other Rodef.

We will remind, again, that this discusses all types of participation in the war: a fighter, a support soldier, civilian assistance, or various types of encouragement and support.

(P. 196)

XVI. Infants

When discussing the killing of babies and children – why on the one hand, we see them as complete innocents, as they have no knowledge, and therefore are not to be sentenced for having violated the Seven Laws, and they are not to be ascribed evil intent. But on the other side, there is great fear of their actions when they grow up… in any event, we learn that there is an opinion that it is right to hurt infants if it is clear that they will grow up to harm us, and in such a situation the damage will be directed specifically at them.

(Pp. 205-200)

IV. Killing the enemy like killing our own men

Inside Torat Hamelech, the Jewish extremist terror tract endorsed by state-employed rabbis

by Max Blumenthal

If the king is permitted to kill his own men for the purpose of war – that same opinion also holds with regard to people who belong to the evil kingdom. In a war of righteous people against evil people, we assume that the evil will eventually hurt us all, if we let it raise its head, and the people of the evil kingdom will also suffer from it.

We are, in fact, arguing to any person from the evil kingdom: if you belong to the evil king – you are liable to be killed for helping murderers; and if you do not help him – you should help us, and it is permissible to kill you as we kill our own people (as we are all in trouble together, and in such a situation it is permissible to kill the few in order to save the many.)

This theory also permits intentional hurting of babies and of innocent people, if this is necessary for the war against the evil people. For example: If hurting the children of an evil king will put great pressure on him that would prevent him from acting in an evil manner – they can be hurt (even without the theory that it is evident that they will be evil when they grow up.)

(P. 215)

VII. Revenge

One of the needs which exists, in the hurting of [Evil people?] is the revenge. In order to beat [win the war against] the evil people, we must act with them in a manner of revenge, as tit versus tat…

In other words, revenge is a necessary need in order to turn the evil-doing into something that does not pay off, and make righteousness grow stronger; and as great as the evil is – so is the greatness of the action needed against it.

(Pp. 216-217)

Sometimes, one does evil deeds that are meant to create a correct balance of fear, and a situation in which evil actions do not pay off… and in accordance with this calculus, the infants are not killed for their evil, but due to the fact that there is a general need of everyone to take revenge on the evil people, and the infants are the ones whose killing will satisfy this need; and they can also be viewed as the ones who are set aside from among a faction, as reality has chosen them to be the ones whose killing will save all of them [the others from that faction?] and prevent evildoing later on. (And it does indeed turn out that to this consideration, the consideration that we brought forth at the end of the prior chapter also definitely is added – which is, that they are in any event suspected of being evil when they grow up.)

Pamela Geller and Co. Waging a War Against Common Sense

Posted in Feature, Loon Blogs with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 6, 2011 by loonwatch

Pamela Geller and her cronies are waging a personal war, and once again her line of target is the silent evil enemy: common sense.

Not content with spreading venom in the USA, Pam is now screaming that Europe has bowed to the shackles and chains of imperialist “Islamic supremacists,” after French and European authorities “cancelled” a Stop the Islamisation of America (SIOA) and Stop the Islamisation of Europe (SIOE)“freedom” rally, that aimed to protest outside the European Parliament, over “the Islamic takeover of Europe.”

As ridiculous as Pam’s event sounds I for one wouldn’t mind seeing Pam Geller and her friends make a fool of themselves, so was her rally really “cancelled?”

Yes, the European authorities seem to have annulled the Pam and co. rally, but is it in the context of “pro-Jihadism submission to Islamic Supremacism,” as the hate-mongers are claiming?

Let’s dissect the truth behind this “cancellation”:

Pam Geller’s Fascist Message and the Implications for Violence

Geller writes,

Democracy collapses in Europe: EU cancels SIOA/SIOE free speech rally — Freedom from jihad flotilla to launch on 9/11

STRASBOURG, FRANCE, June 28: In a capitulation to Islamic supremacists and violent radical Leftists, French and European Union authorities have canceled a free speech rally planned by a coalition of American and European human rights organizations in Strasbourg, the seat of the European Parliament. The human rights organizations Stop Islamization of America (SIOA) and Stop Islamisation of Europe (SIOE) were planning to hold their first-ever transatlantic summit in Strasbourg, France, on July 2.

The SIOA/SIOE summit was dedicated to the defense of the freedom of speech, the freedom of conscience, and the equality of rights of all people before the law – all principles denied by Islamic law.

The evidently responsible and comprehensible actions of the European and French authorities, who were prompted to cancel the potentially violent event, is now being used by Geller as proof of European and French authorities’ “support for Islamic terror and anti-Semitism.”

The authorities may have cancelled the event due to many factors. Firstly, an event justifying racism, fascism and bigotry towards a minority, Muslims in this case, is one big red flag! While some Americans may reflexively take exception to the cancellation of the rally on the grounds that it compromises “free speech,” here in Europe we take our practised laws of equality and freedom very seriously. Authorities have to balance “freedoms” and “rights” with the competing issues of “security,” “community harmony,” and defense against “hate speech” that incites violence, and so decisions to cancel rallies are taken very seriously.

Secondly, a main factor in the cancellation of the event seems to be the crowds that would flock and gather for the rally: neo-nazis, thugs, violent fringe groups, racists, and xenophobes masquerading as self-proclaimed ‘human rights’ activists. This event would have been a grave security threat to the people of Strasbourg, an event purely designed to deliberately provoke the liberals, Muslims and opposition groups and hence would be a breach of French and European law.

The Gellerists attempts in Europe give us pause, after all, Europe is home to one of the most inhuman crimes in history, the Holocaust, which was the result of propaganda, scapegoating and persecution. The rational expertise of the authorities recognised these signs, and sanctioned it in the appropriate manner. In this case, they have cancelled a palpable hate rally that had the potential to turn violent.

Human Rights and Muslim Takeover in the Bizzare-o World of Pamela Geller

The atypical, and apocryphal view of Geller’s interpretation on the meaning and definition of ‘human rights’ is comical. She calls for an international deployment to “defend the rights of man,” when she herself is partaking in an epic act of human oppression:

“The SIOA/SIOE Freedom From Jihad aid flotilla,” Geller explained, “is intended to be a direct response to the capitulation of French, European, and American authorities to Leftist and Islamic supremacist forces of oppression and injustice. It is set to launch after our national Rally for Freedom at Ground Zero on the tenth anniversary of the Islamic jihad attacks that murdered three thousand Americans.”

The “Freedom from Jihad aid flotilla,” is obviously a mock-term employed by Geller to demean theGaza Freedom Flotillas, which she derisively describes as “Jihad flotillas.” Geller dare not admit that Gaza has been and is in need of desperate aid due to the inhumane and oppressive blockade instituted by the Apartheid state of Israel because, well…you know, Israel is sugar and spice and everything nice!!

Let us analyze the facts here. It is estimated that 857 million people are citizens in Europe, and 58 million Muslims in Europe, 14 million of these numbers directly living under the European Union, including those who have converted to the religion of Islam. Where is the indication that Islam is in a takeover of Europe, when the numbers of non-Muslims to Muslims ratio is incomparable and far greater. This is a tool of hysteria and sensationalism on the part of Pam Geller, to insert misinformation to promote a repugnant agenda.

Another important point to note here is that Geller, on the mention of the tragedy of 9/11, conveniently makes no mention of the numerous Muslim victims that died on 9/11, who also were equally victims of such a heinous crime. The lack of acknowledgement of those Muslim deaths, only reiterates her pure uncompromising hatred of Muslims.

The SIOA Freedom From Jihad Flotilla will call upon the international community to act in defense of these basic human rights:
The freedom of speech – as opposed to Islamic prohibitions of “blasphemy” and “slander,” which are used effectively to quash honest discussion of jihad and Islamic supremacism;The freedom of conscience – as opposed to the Islamic death penalty for apostasy;The equality of rights of all people before the law – as opposed to Sharia’s institutionalized discrimination against women and non-Muslims. The Flotilla will call upon all free people of all races and creeds to stand with us to defend our freedoms against the radically intolerant ideology codified in Islamic law.

Geller wants to galvanize the globe to fight 12th century medieval law books that are not applied in the Muslim world, and are particularly irrelevant in light of the Arab Spring. Geller has a condensed and inept understanding of the term “Human Rights,” one which is limited in scope, and only applies to her circle of hate and dogmatism. According to her human rights apply to everyone –except Muslims. That is not human rights, it’s the selected persecution of a minority group, which in-turn presents this whole so called ‘freedom from jihad’ flotilla as nothing more than an opportunity to channel Islamophobic extremism from the right of the spectrum. There are no two ways about this issue.

Geller and co. have a very idiosyncratic strategy to illuminate the principles of ‘violence’ and ‘hatred’ in Islam. In order to combat and deplete the notion of Islamist extremism and hatred, the Gellerists have adopted the very same model of intolerance and prejudice, in order to stamp out the very elements they oppose. What a paradoxical stance, where two wrongs never will make a right. In what parallel universe would such an absurd theory make any sense? Only in the world of Pamela Geller.

Rightists in Jerusalem: Muhammad is dead, butcher Arabs

Posted in Loon Violence, Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , , on June 2, 2011 by loonwatch

These Right-wing activists are increasing in numbers across Israel. Will they be a majority in 20 years?

Can you imagine if this happened in a Muslim country?

Rightists in Jerusalem: Muhammad is dead, butcher Arabs

(YNet)

Dozens of right-wing activists marching through Jerusalem Wednesday were filmed chanting inflammatory messages and singing provocative songs in the capital, including “Muhammad is dead,” “May your village burn,” “Death to leftists,” and “Butcher the Arabs.”

The disturbing utterances were made during the traditional “Flag Dance” on the occasion of Jerusalem Day, which drew tens of thousands of Israelis to the capital to celebrate its unification following the 1967 Six-Day War.

http://mediadownload.ynet.co.il/flowplayerlive/flowplayer.commercial-3.2.5.swf

The offensive chants and songs can be clearly heard in the video, filmed by members of the Sheikh Jarrah Solidarity Movement. Elsewhere, Arab residents hurled stones at Jewish protestors during the tense day. The Jerusalem Police deployed in the city in force ahead of time in a bid to prevent friction between Jews and Arabs.

During Wednesday’s violent clashes, police detained at least 15 rioters, both Jewish and Arab. A focal point of tension was the Old City’s Damascus Gate, where Jewish marchers and Arab business owners hurled stones and fruit at each other. Some Jews entered the Muslim market in the area and chanted “Death to the Arabs” and “Muhammad is dead.”

More Jewish protestors were arrested nearby after yelling nationalistic chants and attempting to hurt Arabs.

Overall, two Jews and one Arab sustained light wounds as result of stone throwing during the day and received medical treatment.

LW Exclusive: Shocking Video of Geert Wilders Hate Speech on US Soil

Posted in Feature, Loon Pastors, Loon Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 26, 2011 by loonwatch
Geert Wilders in Nashville at the Cornerstone Church

The Southern United States and the Midwest have been ravaged by violent forces of nature in the past few weeks; massive flooding has threatened to erase whole communities from Tennessee to Alabama, and over the past few days behemoth-like tornadoes, whipping in fury and frenzy swallowed and spit out whole towns.

The cataclysmic events of the Rapture predicted by Christian radio broadcaster Harold Camping may not have come to pass but these tragedies have altered lives forever, and our thoughts and prayers should be with those affected. I encourage everyone to contribute in whatever way they can to reliefand support efforts in those regions.

“Heartland USA” as this region is otherwise known is too often ignored, some forget that beyond the confines of our large urban cities there is a whole other America that is rural, conservative and vibrant.

It is here that another force has taken hold and is setting up the perfect storm of intolerance, bigotry, racism, xenophobia and hatred.

This force is a product of the wedding of Islamophobia across the Atlantic, between right-leaning populist politicians and Christian and Israeli/Jewish Zionists that has led to a feverous increase in anti-Democracy and anti-Muslim activity.

This is the real monster that should worry us, not some eight-headed dragon beast that might emerge from the sea and usher in the Second Coming of Christ.

Extremism on our Shores

On May 12, 2011 in Madison, Tennessee, a suburb of Nashville, Geert Wilders readily accepted an invitation from the Tennessee Freedom Coalition to speak at Cornerstone Church, a mega church with regular attendance exceeding 3,900 weekly. LW received exclusive video from Rob, a fan of LoonWatch who attended the event and taped the speeches of Wilders, Lou Ann Zelenik and Andy Miller. He was so upset by what he saw that he immediately sent us the footage he captured.

Wilders speech was a diatribe against Islam and Muslims in which all the familiar talking points were rehashed but with a little extra venom, undoubtedly playing to the sentiments of the crowd.

LW Exclusive: Shocking Video of Geert Wilders Hate Speech on US Soil Part 1:

Geert Wilders: “Its Islam Stupid (raucous applause). We must stop the Islamization of our countries, more Islam means less freedom”…”And now, now Europe is looking slowly but gradually like Arabia”…”It was the land of our fathers, it is our land now, it is our values, our values are based on Christianity, Judaism and Humanism and not Islam, it is that simple (applause)”…”and I have a message for all those people who want to rob us from our freedoms, and my message is stay in your own country (loud applause)”…”we are not going to allow Islam to steal our country from us (applause)”…”if Jerusalem falls, Athens, Rome, Amsterdam and Nashville will fall therefore my point is we all are Israel (applause)”…”the only place where Christians are safe in the Middle East is that beautiful country called Israel (loud applause)”…”Make no mistake, please make no mistake, Islam is also coming to America, in fact Islam already is in America. America is facing a stealth jihad, the Islamic attempt to introduce Sharia’ law bit by bit”…”what we need my friends, what we need to turn the tide is a spirit of resistance, what we need I repeat it again is a spirit of resistance”…”we must repeat it over and over again, especially to our children, our Western values and culture based on Christianity and Judaism is better and superior to the Islamic culture (applause), and leaders who talk about immigration without mentioning Islam are blind (applause)”…”we must stop the immigration from non-Western countries and we must forbid the construction of new hate palaces called mosques (applause)”…”the press calls it an Arab spring, I call it unfortunately an Arab winter (applause), Islam and freedom, Islam and democracy are incompatible (applause)”…”the so called Prophet Muhammad was a terrorist worse than Bin Laden ever was (applause)”…”neutrality my friends, neutrality in the face of evil is evil itself (applause).”

Why is a mega-church, an institution that professes to follow the teachings of Christ hosting such a hate-mongerer in the heartland of the USA? What is the Tennessee Freedom Coalition and why is it paying an extremist foreign politician who undermines “freedom” to speak at a Church? What are the ramifications for the rest of the West, the USA in particular when such an extremist is given a platform to incite hate?

Cornerstone Church

This mega-church is a bit like a franchise corporation. It has two locations: one in Bowling Green, Kentucky and the other in Madison, Tennessee. It is led by Senior Pastor Maury Davis,

Pastor Maury Davis was arrested at age eighteen for the crime of first-degree murder. Following his trial and conviction, he served eight and one-half years in the Texas Department of Corrections. During his incarceration, Pastor Davis found his Savior in Jesus Christ and led a revival among his fellow prisoners.

Can anyone imagine what would happen if say Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf had a rap sheet similar to Pastor Davis? Pamela Geller would be doing back flips through Manhattan.

Aside from boasting about its large attendance, the Church also has a Starbucks-esque Coffee shop and other amenities for the Faith-full shopper. It successfully marries capitalism and religion and also adds an ultra-extra helping of Nationalism.

When nearing the Church, the first thing one notices is the strikingly gargantuan American flag in front of the Church:

Inside the Church the backdrop is red, white and blue and the colors surround a white modern looking Cross that reminds one more of the lapel pin worn by Captain Kirk on Star Trek than a cross. I guess they really want you to know they are patriots.

The Church’s philosophy is based on a literal belief in the Bible. They are certainly evangelical and reaffirm the theology of the “millennial reign of Christ,” i.e. the Rapture or the-floating-into-the-sky version of the End Times.

They believe that the Bible, “both the Old and New Testaments, are verbally inspired of God and are the revelation of God to man, the infallible, authoritative rule of faith and conduct (2 Timothy 3:15-17; 1 Thessalonians 2:13; 2 Peter 1:21).”

Danios wrote in his “Understanding Jihad” series about how most American Christians believe the above, and it adds further credence to his recent article, “The ‘But that’s just the Old Testament’ Cop-out.”

Tennessee Freedom Coalition

The Tennessee Freedom Coalition, led by Lou Ann Zelenik and Andy Miller is a right-wing organization that can be considered a part of the Tea Party Movement, the base of the GOP. The addition of the TFC to the long list of GOP organizations can be considered one more dark stain in the history of the Tennessee GOP. It was not long ago that their members were making racist remarks about the president:

On top of the racism, homophobia isn’t far behind, the Republican governor of Tennessee has until June 1st to consider an “anti-Gay bill that would prohibit the passage of anti-discrimination laws protecting LGBT individuals.”

Tennessee also happens to be the state where we have seen a rise in hate against Muslims (in fact it is quickly becoming the center of anti-Muslim hate). Courts have been considering whether Islam is a religion, lawmakers are likely to pass a “Ban Sharia’ law” bill inspired by a documented racist and extremist Zionist named David Yerushalmi. It is scene to the Murfreesboro mosque struggle which made headlines this past summer. A year ago Pamela Geller was a headline speaker for the Tennessee Tea Party convention, talk about insane.

For its part the Tennessee Freedom Coalition was passing out this pamphlet at the Church:

How do you promote tolerance by “fighting” a religion? What they really mean to say in light of Wilders speech is, “Promote Religious Tolerance by Working to Stop the Growth of Islam,” which is like saying “promote tolerance by being intolerant.” Obviously this puts Muslims, you know, those who practice Islam in quite the bind.

LW Exclusive: Shocking Video of Geert Wilders Hate Speech on US Soil Part 2:

Conclusion

This is not the first time Geert Wilders has spoken at the pulpit, previously he spoke at Synagogues and at Robert Spencer and Pamela Geller’s SIOA 9/11 hate rally. However his presence amongst 3,000 admiring followers on US soil is not only reprehensible, it is a development that bodes ill for all of us.

It will only increase the radicalization of the anti-Muslim movement which seeks at its fundamental level to curtail freedom of religion and expression, first the rights of Muslims (soft target) and then anyone else they disagree with.

A word must also be said about Wilders obsessive citation of Israel. It is a country which he boasts about visiting over “forty times” and which he cites as a paragon of virtue, freedom, liberty, justice and light. He cites the security of Israel as one of the reasons that the West must fight Islam.

Lets forget the war crimes, human rights violations and apartheid policies in Israel for a second and really look at the hate that is emerging in its name. Individuals and organizations with deep connections to Israel, both network-wise and theologically are calling for the destruction of Islam which they regard as evil incarnate.

Aubrey Chernick (one of the leading funders of Islamophobia), Robert Spencer, Pamela Geller, Geert Wilders, David Horowitz, Brigitte Gabriel, Allen West, the BNP, EDL, SIOE, SIOA, BPE, JDL, large numbers of Christian and Jewish Zionists and others believe that as long as you are fervently pro-Israel you can be as anti-Islam/Muslim as you want without suffering any consequences. Such a position at the end of the day only harms Jewish moral interests, and this much has been expressed by brave voices such as Not in Our Name, Jews without Borders, Muzzlewatch, Richard Silverstein, Max Blumenthal, our very own loonwatcher Gefilte, Glenn Greenwald and others.

The spectacle of a racist, anti-Muslim Dutch politician arriving on our shores to warn us about Islam is quite ironic, but what is most disturbing is the reception he received from a large audience of Americans. It may seem far-fetched now but one day Geert Wilders or someone like him (Allen West?) may move on from addressing thousands of Church goers to addressing Congress–the question is will he receive as many applauses as Benjamin Netanyahu?

David Horowitz: “Islam is Religion of Hate…Palestinians are Morally Sick”

Posted in Loon Sites with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on March 15, 2011 by loonwatch
David Horowitz

David Horowitz, founder and editor of FrontPageMag as well as Robert Spencer’s financier and boss is at it again, targeting Palestinians and Islam. Horowitz said of the Palestinians,

“No people have shown themselves as so morally sick as the Palestinians”, adding, “In the history of all mankind, there was never a people who strapped bombs on their bodies and killed innocent people. No other people has sunk so low as the Palestinians, and everyone is afraid to say it.”

About Islam Horowitz was likewise unrestrained, describing Islam as a religion possessed by,

“hate, violence and racism”,

This is the radical anti-Muslim and racist anti-Palestinian agenda that drives both Horowitz and Spencer. While Spencer’s anti-Muslim and anti-Islam animus is clear and copiously documented it is unknown whether he shares the same opinion about Palestinians/Arabs as his boss. What is certain however is that Spencer does not mind these statements, nor does he condemn them and therefore he is complicit in his boss’s hateful rhetoric about Arabs.

The full article can be read at Israel National News,

FrontPage Editor at Bklyn College: Palestinians are Morally Sick

by Fern Sidman, INN New York Correspondent

David Horowitz,  conservative commentator, prolific author and founder of theFrontPage Mag web site, spoke out  in response to ongoing Israeli Apartheid Week on campus. A full house gathered at the Brooklyn College library auditorium on Thursday evening,  under exceptionally heavy security, to hear him.

The speech, delivered one day before the barbaricmassacre of five members of the Fogel family on Friday night in Itamar, became tragically prescient..

Describing the Palestinians, Horowitz said:  ”No people have shown themselves as so morally sick as the Palestinians”, adding, “In the history of all mankind, there was never a people who strapped bombs on their bodies and killed innocent people. No other people has sunk so low as the Palestinians, and everyone is afraid to say it.”

Describing Islam as a religion possessed by “hate, violence and racism”, he said that a resolution to the protracted Israeli-Palestinian imbroglio could is not beyond reach. “If you disarm the Palestinians in the Middle East there will be peace, but if you disarm the Jews, there wil be further death and destruction.”

Radical Zionists Encourage the Murder of Millions of Innocent People with Nuclear Weapons just because they are Arabs or Muslims

Posted in Feature, Loon Violence with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 1, 2011 by loonwatch
Nuclear_Holocaust

Nuclear weapons are the most terrible weapons ever invented. The initial explosion is as hot as the sun, capable of instantly vaporizing an entire city. Afterward, the survivors are certain to suffer from the fall-out and die from radiation poisoning. Generations to come will experience genetic mutations, not to mention the tremendous damage done to the environment itself. Innocent people are guaranteedto be victims for many years after the blast. But none of these horrors are too much for the radically Islamophobic wing of Zionism.

The website Israeli Insider has republished “by popular request” perhaps the most dehumanizing anti-Muslim hate piece I have ever read. Our Zionist author proposes the “Samson Strategy” (named after the biblical figure) which can only be described as the unrestrained (and unprincipled) massacre of innocent people, Muslims and non-Muslims, in retaliation for attacks against Israel. Other like-minded Zionists argued after 9/11 that Islam’s holy sites should be destroyed if Israel is harmed by Muslim extremists. Our author, however, has a different plan:

I disagree with his prescription. It doesn’t go nearly far enough.

Destroying the holy sites of all 1.5 billion Muslims in retaliation for the acts of a few extremists is undoubtedly a heinous war crime under article 33 of the Geneva Convention:

No protected person may be punished for an offense he or she has not personally committed. Collective penalties and likewise all measures of intimidation or of terrorism are prohibited.

The Israeli Defense Force has been regularly accused of collective punishment in its wars with its neighbors. Many human rights lawyers, including Israeli scholars, consider the IDF’s actions a form of state terrorism. Yet, it appears our author’s hatred of Muslims as a collective is so great that he isn’t satisfied with regular run-of-the-mill war crimes. Rather, he would release Israel’s secret nuclear arsenal against literally millions and millions of innocent people who, in reality, are fellow Children of Abraham that have absolutely nothing to do with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict:

Our only choice is to hit them first, to hit them so hard that they will not be able to realize their murderous aims…And that’s why the best use of Israel’s presumed arsenal of nukes should be pointed not so much at the population centers of our enemies but at their symbolic centers.

Yes, Mecca. And Medina. Najaf and Qum. Mount Arafat and Baalbek. And, not to be neglected: Al-Aqsa and the Dome of the Rock on Jerusalem’s Temple Mount.

I wonder, did he mean to imply he wanted to “nuke” the Temple Mount as well? Or perhaps war crimes using conventional weapons are sufficient in Jerusalem (so as not to damage the sacred site of the Third Jewish Temple)?

In any case, his genocidal fury is predicated on the demonstrably false assumption that all Muslims everywhere (without exception) are single-mindedly bent on murdering everyone in Israel:

So there can be no doubt that if the Muslims should ever get the bomb, they will do anything and everything to try to assert their till-now impotent pseudo-manhood (expressable [sic] now only by murdering women who assert their independence and by turning non-Muslims into dhimmis) by launching a missile in our direction and, they hope, maybe getting lucky.

It’s a shame our author sees no room for peace with Muslims, though many Muslims and Jews enjoy friendship together. Even the late ultra-conservative Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia has argued, citing the Qur’an (verse 8:61), that reaching a peace agreement with Israel is beneficial to Muslims. Still, none of these facts keep our Zionist author from targeting all Muslims.

We have already debunked the anti-Muslim canards concerning women and dhimmitude. It is not surprising that a radical Zionist should essentialize Islam in this way (i.e. “All Muslims hate women and Jews!”). However, I was shocked by this line:

Allah bows down before the Lord of the Jews, just as Hagar and Ishmael were cast out into the desert, unwanted and discarded, by father Abraham. Vibrant, successful, ethical and freedom-loving Israel is proof that Ishmael is culturally castrated and spiritually corrupt.

This is some serious multi-layered ignorance here. Allah, as we have said many times before, is simply the Arabic word for God used by Jews. It is completely nonsensical to say Allah bows down to the Lord of the Jews because Allah is the Lord of the Jews! That is, of course, unless one has a xenophobic superiority complex, which incidentally is revealed in our author’s second sentence. Jews, we are told, are “vibrant, successful, ethical, and freedom-loving” while Arabs are “culturally castrated and spiritually corrupt.” Can you get more explicitly racist than that? I fail to see how the author can credibly claim to be spiritually superior while advocating the cold-blooded murder of innumerable innocent people, women and children. In my mind, pure anti-Arab racism is at work here.

Too often does the news media cover stories about scary radical Muslims who burn American and Israeli flags, but not covered are stories (like this one) about equally scary radical Jews (Zionists) who likewise subscribe to a supremacist, murderous religio-political ideology. For this reason, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has continued to rage for decades, not because of some inherent evil in Arab/Muslim DNA, but because Israeli extremists (and their Arab counterparts) have consistently prevented a fair, balanced solution from emerging.

Jews and Arabs will only be able to live in peace together, in the holy land, when both sides reign in their extremists and prepare (and educate) their populations for peace and social justice. But this will never happen so long as the allies of Israel continue to ignore or downplay the Israeli side of the equation.

Time for solving the crisis is running out. For all we know, a group of Zionist fundamentalists have already infiltrated the Israeli army and are just waiting to unleash the “Samson Strategy.” Who is watching the watcher?

God help us all…

 

Haaretz: Mubarak’s Departure Thwarted Israeli Strike on Iran

Posted in Loon Politics, Loon Violence with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 16, 2011 by loonwatch

Netanyahu afraid of an “Islamic Revolution” hopes for a “Turkish” outcome in Egypt. So I guess he will be apologizing for the Mavi Marmara incident sometime soon?

Mubarak’s departure thwarted Israeli strike on Iran

by Aluf Benn (Haaretz)

Most Israelis were either born or immigrated to this country during the period in which Hosni Mubarak ruled Egypt. This is the reality they know. And this is the significance of the stability that Mubarak provided them with.

In all the upheavals that took place in the Middle East over the past three decades, the Egyptian regime appeared to be a powerful rock. The leaders of Israel knew that their left flank was secure as they went out to war, built settlements and negotiated peace on the other fronts. The friction in relations between Jerusalem and Cairo, however frustrating it was at times, did not undermine the foundations of the strategic alliance created by the Israeli-Egyptian peace agreement.

The resignation of Mubarak following 18 days of protests in Egypt ushers in a new era of uncertainty for the entire region, and for Israel in particular. The long reign of the Egyptian leader was not unusual for the Middle East. Hafez Assad led Syria for 30 years, like Mubarak in Egypt; King Hussein and Yasser Arafat ruled for 40 years. But when they stepped off the stage, their legacy was secure. Hussein and Assad passed the reins on to their sons, and Arafat was replaced by his veteran deputy, Mahmoud Abbas. This is why the changing of the guard in Jordan, Syria and the Palestinian Authority were perceived by Israel as natural, arousing no particular concern. After all, the familiar is not all that frightening.

But this is not the situation in Egypt today. Mubarak was thrown out, before he could prepare one of his close aides or his son to take over as president. The army commanders who took over are trying to calm the Egyptian public and the international community with promises that they have no intentions of setting up a new junta in Cairo, but rather, plan to pass to transfer authority to a civilian government through free elections. But no one, including the generals in the Supreme Council of the Armed forces, knows how and when the regime transition will play out. History teaches us that after revolutions, it takes a number of years of domestic infighting before the new regime stabilizes.

This uncertainty troubles Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. His reactions during the first days of the revolution exposed deep anxieties that the peace agreement with Egypt might collapse. He tried to delay Mubarak’s end as long as possible, but to no avail, and on Saturday he praised the Egyptian military’s announcement that all international agreements would be respected, including the peace treaty with Israel.

Netanyahu is afraid of the possibility that Egypt may become an Islamic republic, hostile to Israel – a sort of new Iran but much closer physically. He hopes this doesn’t happen and that Egypt will follow Turkey’s footsteps, preserving formal ties with Israel, embassies, air connections and trade, even as it expresses strong criticism of its treatment the Palestinians.

The best case scenario, in his view, even if it is less likely, is that Egypt will become like Turkey before the era of Erdogan: a pro-American country, controlled by the military.

Netanyahu shared with Mubarak his concerns about the growing strength of Iran. Egypt played a key role in the Sunni, the “moderate,” axis, which lined up alongside Israel and the United States against Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his allies in Lebanon, Syria and the Gaza Strip.

The toppling of the regime in Cairo does not alter this strategic logic. The revolutionaries at Tahrir Square were motivated by Egyptian national pride and not by their adoration of the Islamic Revolution in Iran. Whoever succeeds Mubarak will want to follow this line, even bolster Egyptian nationalism, and not transform Egypt into an Iranian satellite. This does not mean that Mubarak’s successor will encourage Israel to strike the Iranian nuclear installations.

On the contrary: they will listen to Arab public opinion, which opposes a preemptive war against Iran. Israel will find it difficult to take action far to the east when it cannot rely on the tacit agreement to its actions on its western border. Without Mubarak there is no Israeli attack on Iran. His replacement will be concerned about the rage of the masses, if they see him as a collaborator in such operation.

Whoever is opposed to a strike, or fear its consequences – even though they appear to be in favor, like Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak – now have the ultimate excuse. We wanted to strike Iran, they will write in their memoirs but we could not because of the revolution in Egypt. Like Ehud Olmert says that he nearly made peace, they will say that they nearly made war. In his departure Mubarak prevented a preemptive Israeli war. This appears to have been his last contribution to regional stability.

 

Jewish Voice for Peace Chief Threatened for Being “Pro-Palestinian”

Posted in Loon Violence, Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on February 9, 2011 by loonwatch

No word from Spencer on this yet. Imagine if a Muslim had done this, there would be cries about the intolerance of Muslims and how inherently Islam cannot deal with dissension.

Jewish Voice for Peace chief threatened over pro-Palestinian campaign

(Haaretz)

The head of the pro-Palestinian organization Jewish Voice for Peace received a threatening poster at her Los Angeles area home this weekend for her involvement in the organization.

Estee Chandler, the organization leader on the West coast, said she found a poster on her front porch last week reading “WANTED for treason and incitement against Jews.”

According to Chandler, the poster displayed her picture, her workplace, other personal details and names of her relatives.

The poster charged her with using “her own presumed Jewishness as a weapon against the Jewish People and the Jewish State of Israel while conspiring with other well-known anti-Israel groups to assist in Israel’s destruction and to otherwise engender hatred and incite further violence against the Jewish People and the Jewish State of Israel.”

In a statement responding to the threat published on the organization’s website, Chandler said  “I was forewarned about extremists when I first decided to start a Jewish Voice for Peace chapter here in my hometown of Los Angeles. I went into it with my eyes open. While I didn’t think anything would happen this soon, i cant say it wasn’t something I didn’t anticipate. Ultimately I think these people really are cowards, and not really to be feared.”

“We are the silent majority of American Jews and its time for us to stop being silent. if we raise our voices a fraction of the level of these people- we will become the message, too many people who are with us are afraid. ultimately nonviolence is the only thing that has ever won out,” she added.

In October last year, the Anti-Defamation League named the Jewish Voice for Peace — which champions the rights of Palestinians and is considered an anti-Israel organization by many Americans, especially after calling to boycott companies that profit from Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and Gaza – among the top 10 anti-Israel groups in America.

The organization, however, maintains the stand that they are not fighting against Israel or challenging its right to exist, but rather questioning the Israeli government’s policies and actions in the Palestinian territories.

The distributors of the threatening poster have yet to be found, according to the JVP.

 

Allen West Says Keith Ellison is the “antithesis of American values”

Posted in Loon Pastors, Loon Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 24, 2011 by loonwatch

Allen West is on a crusade, no doubt about it. The video for his interview with Shalom TV is insane, it seems as though he puts Israel first even ahead of America.

Allen West: Keith Ellison ‘The Antithesis Of Principles’ Upon Which Country Was Founded (VIDEO)

(Huffington Post)

Freshman Tea Party-backed Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.) recently got personal in an attack on one of the House’s two Muslim representatives, declaring that Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) represents “the antithesis of the principles upon which this country was established.”

During an interview with “The Shalom Show,” West also said that he plans to “defeat” Ellison, an outspoken Democrat who “supports Islam,” according to host Richard Peritz, “intellectually in debate and discourse.”

As ThinkProgress notes, West has repeatedly sought to connect Islamic religious beliefs to supposedly anti-American views.

At a town hall meeting during his campaign, West claimed that people who display the popular “Coexist” bumper stickers, which use various religious symbols as font, are those who would “give away our country” and “our rights and freedoms and liberties because they are afraid to stand up and confront that which is the antithesis, anathema of who we are.”

If the connection between the bumper sticker and Islam wasn’t made clear by that statement, West went on to drive home his claim that Islam is a “very vile and very vicious enemy that we have allowed to come in this country because we ride around with bumper stickers that say ‘coexist.’”

For more on West’s controversial views of Islam, check out ThinkProgress’s report here.

 

Jewish-British anti-Muslim event in Toronto draws protests, arrests

Posted in Loon Violence with tags , , , , , , , , , , on January 13, 2011 by loonwatch

The wacky alliance of skinhead EDL and Kahanist JDL continues, and remember this is a group that Spencer and his pal Pamela Geller openly support.

Jewish-British anti-Muslim event in Toronto draws protests, arrests

(Haaretz)

Dozens of anti-racist activists demonstrated in front of a Zionist community center in Toronto, Canada on Tuesday to protest a public event organized by Jewish and British anti-Muslims. Four protestors were arrested in the fracas, and at least one police officer suffered a broken rib, according to The Globe and Mail.

The local chapter of the Jewish Defense League, an extreme-right organization founded by the late Rabbi Meir Kahane, broadcasted a live speech by English Defense League founder Stephen Lennon, otherwise known as Tommy Robinson, drawing the ire of demonstrators.

The two groups on opposite sides of the Atlantic Ocean have found common cause in nationalist pride and Islamophobic rhetoric. Both groups claim that they do not promote prejudice against others, only pride in their own respective ethnicities, but critics accuse them of spreading hate against Arabs and other Muslims.

One group of demonstrators maintained a vigil across the intersection from the Zionist building, while a separate group of demonstrators marched towards the community center to confront the JDL. Police on foot and on horseback intervened and corralled the protestors, The Globe and Mail reported.

Toronto police said that one of their officers was had been taken to hospital with a broken rib after he was hit with a flagpole. At the end of the demonstration, police noticed that one of their squad cars had been vandalized, its windows smashed.

Anti-Racist Action, which organized the second group of protestors, claim that police responded violently, kicking one demonstrator in the face. Officers confiscated the cameras of activists videotaping the arrests and wiped their memory cards clean, say the ARA.

The EDL website says that the group’s aims are to oppose what it calls the application of Sharia law in the U.K. “The root cause of the problem is the Koran, it’s Islam,” Lennon told the BBC in November. “And no one has got the balls to admit it and say it and talk about it. We will.”

“The EDL has organized violent street marches that target Arab and Muslim people,” read an open letter signed by the organizers of Tuesday’s protest. “They are part of an alarming rise in fascist, racist and neo-Nazi organizing in Europe over the last few years, including attacks on Muslims, immigrants and Roma people.”

“JDL supports the EDL,” says an announcement on the JDL Canadian website. “Now is the time to step forward and stop Political Islam. The British Establishment is following the appeasement policies of Neville Chamberlain,” it reads, a reference to the British prime minister who tried to placate Adolf Hitler, implying that Muslims represent a threat of Nazi proportions.

In Israel, the Kach political party established by JDL founder Rabbi Meir Kahane was banned from running for the Knesset in 1992, due to its racist platform, but in recent years Kahane’s followers have entered the Knesset under different names, and some of Kahane’s proposed policies are now unabashedly espoused by ministers in the current government.

Bernie Farber of the establishment Jewish organization Canadian Jewish Congress, said of the JDL on the CJN website, “As long as they maintain the peace, as long as they do not engage in racist language or hate or violate Canadian law, they have the right to exist.”

Farber said he was disappointed that the JDL would support the EDL because of its record of violence. But, he told the National Post, “Islamic fundamentalism is a real threat.”

 

Rabbis’ Wives Urge “Holy Race” to Stay Pure

Posted in Loon Politics, Loon Rabbis with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 28, 2010 by loonwatch

Racism is alive and well in Israel, especially amongst many of the Haredi nationalists. We have reported now for quite sometime on the phenomena of blatant racism and supremacism on racial and religious levels that has sprung into open discourse in Israel and Palestine due to events in Safed, Israel.

The religious are viewing this as a pitched battle between them and Secularists. They view themselves as a bulwark defending their religious and racial integrity and it has reached a point now where it is in direct conflict with the law and the other cultural strains and forces in society.

The language of a “holy race” of “saving our daughters” and “future generations” is reminiscent of the German women groups such as National Socialist Women’s Organisation, League of German Maidens (Hitler Youth) and the SS-Helferin.

Imagine if this Lehava had been a Muslim organization. You can bet that the anti-Muslim Islamophobsphere would be drooling all over this and blaming it on Islam.

Rabbis’ wives urge Israeli women: Stay away from Arab men

By Chaim Levinson (Haaretz)

A letter urging Jewish women not to date non-Jewish men has been published by a group of rabbis’ wives. The letter comes on the heels of a rabbis’ letter published earlier this month urging Jews not to sell or rent properties to non-Jews.

The new letter, signed by 30 rabbis’ wives, says, “For your sake, for the sake of future generations, and so you don’t undergo horrible suffering, we turn to you with a request, a plea, a prayer. Don’t date non-Jews, don’t work at places that non-Jews frequent, and don’t do national service with non-Jews.”

The letter was organized by the organization Lehava, which claims to “save daughters of Israel” from what it calls assimilation. Lehava also took part in the recent demonstrations against selling or renting homes to non-Jews.

The group operates a shelter for women who leave their Arab partners and educate the public on what it calls the dangers that arise from contact between Jews and Arabs. The organization also called for the boycott of the Gush Etzion branch of the supermarket Rami Levi, where Arab and Jewish workers are on shift side-by-side.

In the last few weeks, Bentzi Gopstein of Kiryat Arba, the director of Lehava, convinced the wives of important rabbis in the religious Zionist movement to sign on to the letter. Among the signatories were Netzhiya Yosef, wife of Rabbi Yaakov Yosef, Esther Lior, wife of Rabbi Dov Lior, Shulamit Melamed of Beit Alon and Starna Druckman of Kiryat Motzkin.

The rabbis’ wives letter claims to alert its readers to the phenomenon of Arabs who go by Jewish nicknames, claiming that they are kind and gentle until they can isolate a Jewish woman, whereupon they beat and humiliate her and do not allow her to escape.

In its attempt to appeal to Jewish women, the letter states that they descend from a noble race of kings, and that dating a non-Jew would thereby cut her off from her Jewish family.

 

Iranium: Clarion Fund’s Third Crusade

Posted in Feature, Loon Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 28, 2010 by loonwatch

Third time’s the charm, so they say. Following the last two transparent failures to influence American politics with Islamophobia, the Clarion Fund (Aish HaTorah) is literally counting the seconds down until their “nationwide event” to reveal their newest scare-mongering dud: Iranium.

We have reported on Clarion’s last two anti-Muslim films: Obsession (see: Obsessionforhate) and Third Jihad. Those films featured a number of Islamophobic “experts” we have exposed on this site (i.e. Daniel Pipes, Brigitte Gabriel, Walid Shoebat, Steven Emerson) who specialize in making lucrative careers off Islamophobic fear. Those two films were disturbingly similar to other sophisticated propaganda films that demonize entire populations. Jack Shaheen, an Oxford University research scholar and author of four books on racism, stereotyping and propaganda, describes the film Obsession as “very convincing.” He says:

“Goebbels would be proud. This film has a place in cinema history with the racist film Birth of a Nation and the Nazi film Triumph of the Will because it so cleverly advances lies to vilify a people.”

Those are the old films. But with this new film will Clarion reform its alarmist ways and instead present us with an insightful, balanced, and objective analysis of the situation in Iran? A quick look at some of the film’s interviewees tell us, no.

Iranium, like its predecessors, seems to rely on a highly edited mix of expert and pseudo-expert commentary. Among the most glaring pseudo-experts is Frank Gaffney; noted on this site for his adherence to the “stealth jihad” conspiracy. Gaffney is founder of the Center for Security Policywhere he lobbies for hardline neoconservative security policies. Gaffney is a prolific writer on the Washington Times’ anti-Muslim editorial page where he has seriously argued that President Obama is a secret Muslim, lambasted Obama for daring to reach out to the Muslim World, and accused Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan of facilitating a Sharia take-over… twice.

Due to his obvious conflict of interest, Gaffney’s presence as a film expert raises serious doubts about the credibility of the film. Since Gaffney is a neoconservative lobbyist, he writes security “analysis” that favors neoconservative policy prescriptions. In other words, it is not in his policyinterest to provide us with an objective analysis. Hence, he has been duly noted for the idiocy of his hyper-inflated anti-Sharia report.

If all of Clarion’s films have relied on pseudo-expert testimony that supports a pre-defined policy prescription, then why should we take seriously their hyping the Iranian threat? Is the purpose to inform the public or to influence them to vote a certain way? Iranium appears to be just another expensive attempt to influence American politics by scapegoating the Islamic/Iranian boogeyman.

People who are inspired by the Clarion Fund should flip the scenario around. Would it be acceptable for me to create a serious documentary entitled Israelanium featuring Israeli nuclear whistleblower Mordechai Vanunu? Would it be right if my film deliberately blurred the line between extremism and Judaism? Somehow I think charges of anti-Semitism would immediately ensue, but this same crowd of people has no problem using the same cut, paste, and smear tactics against Muslims.

Don’t get me wrong. The Iranian government should be subject to all the international laws and standards that all nations are held to. There are important concerns about which people need to get good, balanced information. So for this reason the film Iranium promises to harm our national debate even more by injecting inflammatory, one-sided propaganda into the discourse at a time when people need clear-headed assessment.

So while Clarion prepares for another Muslim-fearing mulligan, let’s hope that this film follows its cousins as another embarrassingly epic failure. Perhaps our efforts to restore sanity will overcome their march to keep fear alive.

 

Arabs Not Allowed because they aren’t Jewish; What if they were Muslim?

Posted in Feature, Loon People with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 23, 2010 by loonwatch

How poignant is the above Photo? It wasn’t long ago that such signs were strewn across the USA, but those with historical amnesia seem to forget it ever existed.

Even more egregious,  Jewish extremists in Israel are now inflicting a similar decrepit form of racist and religious discrimination. What if it were Muslims saying “this is a Muslim only neighborhood, no Jews allowed?” Or if this had happened in an area of Cairo?

You can be sure that Robert Spencer and company would be chirping about it day and night.

Arab tenants forced to leave Tel Aviv home due to threats

(YNet)

Four Muslims and a Druze man were compelled to leave an apartment they had rented in southern Tel Aviv due to neighbors’ scheming against them, Ynet has learned. They claim that residents of the neighborhood threatened to torch the apartment and attack the landlord if the tenants were not evicted.

“Residents said aloud that they didn’t want to see Arabs in the neighborhood, because it’s for Jews alone,” one of the tenants said. (Hassan Shaalan)

 

Rabbi David Rosen: Europe Risks Being “Overrun” by Islam

Posted in Loon Politics, Loon-at-large with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 3, 2010 by loonwatch

Many people are feeding into the fear mongering frenzy that Islam and Muslims are going to take over and overrun the West, here Rabbi David Rosen a prominent Jewish religious leader succumbs to such tactics.

Leading rabbi says Europe risks being ‘overrun’ by Islam

ANDREW RETTMAN

Today @ 09:42 CET

EUOBSERVER / JERUSALEM – One of the luminaries of the international Jewish community, Rabbi David Rosen, has warned that Europe risks being “overrun” by Islam unless it rediscovers its Christian roots.

Speaking to journalists at a meeting in Jerusalem on Friday (26 November), Rabbi Rosen, the director of inter-religious affairs at the Washington-based American Jewish Congress, said that a predominantly secular and liberal Western European society is under threat by the rapid growth of Islamic communities that do not want to integrate with their neighbours.

“I am against building walls. My humanity is my most important component. But Western society very clearly doesn’t have a strong identity. I would like Christians in Europe to become more Christian … those who do not have a strong identity are easily overrun by those who do,” the rabbi warned.

“I think there is a pretty good chance that your grandchildren, if they are not Muslim, then they will be very strong Roman Catholics,” he told one Italian reporter. “I don’t think a tepid identity can stand up to the challenge.”

Rabbi Rosen’s views are shared by a number of Jewish commentators, who look at the demographic growth of Muslims in Europe with the same trepidation as the demographic growth of Arabs in Israel.

The question we must ask of Rabbi Rosen and others who share his views or forward similar views is, how can they believe the character, foundation and beliefs of Europe are so fickle that a minority population (that all indications show is integrated) will so dramatically alter Europe? It exposes a profound lack of confidence in Europe.