Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Israel's Pacific Island Sock-Puppet Sues... Israel

In his Diary of a Foreign Minister, Bob Carr wrote of his victory over the Israel first government of former prime minister Julia Gillard to register an Australia first vote in support of enhanced Palestinian status in the UN:

"The column of ten nations, die-hards, glued on Israel supporters - Micronesia and the Marshall Islands - had just been reduced by one. A message to the settlers and fanatics in Israel..." (See my 20/4/14 post The Carr Diary 12)

The other 9 die-hards for Netanyahu's Israel at the time (29/11/12) were, of course, Israel itself, the United States, Canada, Palau, Nauru, the Czech Republic and Panama.

While there's an implied swipe here by the Americanophile Carr at the US, it was obviously the absurdity (not to mention the ignominy) of Australia lining up yet again with Israel's Pacific Island sock-puppets that got to our former foreign minister.

That absurdity is underlined by the following news:

"The Marshall Islands is suing the nine countries with nuclear weapons at the International Court of Justice at the Hague, arguing they have violated their legal obligation to disarm... It argues it is justified in taking the action because of the harm it suffered as a result of the nuclear arms race. The Pacific chain of islands, including Bikini Atoll and Enewetak, was the site of 67 nuclear tests from 1946 to 1958... The Marshallese Islanders say they have been suffering serious health and environmental effects ever since. The Island republic is suing the five 'established' nuclear weapons states recognised in the 1968 nuclear non-proliferation treaty (NPT) - the US, Russia (which inherited the Soviet arsenal), China, France and the UK - as well as the three countries outside the NPT who have declared nuclear arsenals - India, Pakistan and North Korea, and the one undeclared nuclear weapons state, Israel." (Marshall Islands sues nine nuclear powers over failure to disarm, Julian Borger,, 24/4/14)

It'll be interesting to see how the Marshall Islands votes in the UN on Palestine/Israel-related issues from now on

Monday, April 28, 2014

Jake Lynch Update 5

An unusual article this, for The Australian:

"A Jewish association has branded the racial discrimination case against University of Sydney's Jake Lynch counter-productive, saying it has only raised the profile of his support for the Boycott, Divestment [&] Sanctions campaign against Israel. Since the Israeli legal activist group Shurat HaDin launched the lawsuit in the Federal Court, Professor Lynch's stand has become a cause celebre in sections of the academic community, claiming the right to freedom of speech and academic expression is under attack... Two new groups have been established to support him and the global BDS movement, including one among university staff. One of the organisers of the Sydney Staff for BDS group, lecturer Nick Riemer, said he and other staff decided to create it 'because of what's happened to Jake'. The groups have helped raise about $20,000 towards Professor Lynch's legal defence, he has been invited to address BDS public meetings around the country, and one recent BDS event in Sydney in his support drew about 200 people. One of the pro-Lynch speakers at the Sydney fundraiser, Jewish Israeli academic Marcelo Svirsky who is a lecturer at the University of Wollongong, says he will walk from Sydney to Canberra later this year to raise awareness of the BDS campaign. Dr Svirsky said he would stop in towns along the way to deliver public addresses and then lodge a submission in parliament calling on the government to back BDS. Executive Council of Australian Jewry executive director Peter Wertheim said Shurat HaDin's legal action against Professor Lynch was 'the wrong way to oppose BDS. Regardless of the outcome, the Shurat HaDin court case would give a very marginal BDS campaign in Australia undeserved exposure and a shot in the arm,' Mr Wertheim said. 'Our organisation's strategy has been to expose the aims and methods of the BDS campaign in the marketplace of ideas'..."

Regarding that last sentence, the aims of the BDS movement, for those still wondering, are quite simple: to pressure Israel to end its occupation of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip; grant full equality to the Palestinian minority in Israel itself; and allow Palestinian refugees, expelled from their homeland in 1948 and again in 1967, to return to their homes and lands in Palestine/Israel. BDS is therefore about implementing basic human rights. How one can oppose these is frankly beyond me.

As for "exposing" BDS in the "marketplace of ideas," this has so far manifested itself in mobilising Australian politicians, both state and federal, to smear supporters of BDS as anti-Semites and Nazis, ongoing attacks of like nature in the Murdoch press, the establishment of links with the police (see my 28/10/11 post Israel 101 for Cops), and most significantly, the actual or threatened blocking of funding to academics such as Jake Lynch who support BDS (see my 29/1/13 post The Punishing of Jake Lynch). So much for the "marketplace of ideas."

To continue with the above report:

"Dr Svirsky, a political scientist who grew up in Argentina but moved to Israel after being conscripted during the Falklands War, said 'there is increasing support for Lynch because of this particular court case. For me the BDS is about not just ending the Israeli occupation, but also the rules of apartheid in Israel', he said." (Discrimination case 'raising profile of BDS', Ean Higgins, The Australian, 26/4/14)

All credit to Dr Svirsky.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Jake Lynch Update 4

"Sydney University professor Jake Lynch has claimed significant early victories in the landmark court case brought against him by Israeli legal group Shurat HaDin for his academic boycott of Israeli universities. In the Federal Court in Sydney yesterday, judge Alan Robertson rejected allegations Professor Lynch was a leader of the global boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign in Australia. Justice Robertson also struck out Shurat HaDin's allegation that Professor Lynch called for a boycott of Israeli academic Dan Avnon... Justice Robertson also struck out a paragraph claiming 'a purpose of BDS movement campaigns is to inflict pain on Israeli persons or organisations'. He gave Shurat HaDin 28 days to re-plead the paragraphs he struck out, and also ordered it to pay Professor Lynch's costs. The judge also said he would order Shurat HaDin to put up a bond to cover Professor Lynch's legal costs should it lose the case, unless its lawyer, Andrew Hamilton, agreed to provide advance notice if he intended to sell... his house and other assets." (Professor gets legal boost in BDS case, Ean Higgins, The Australian, 25/4/14)

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Selective US Concern for Disenfranchised Peoples

Apparently, Bashar al-Asad's decision to stage a presidential election in Syria on June 3 hasn't gone down too well in the United States, the self-proclaimed champion of disenfranchised Syrians.

Wails State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki:

"Staging elections under current conditions, including the effective disenfranchisement of millions of Syrians, neither addresses the aspirations of the Syrian people nor moves the country any closer to a negotiated political solution." (New chemical attack in Syria, AFP/The Australian, 23/4/14)

Funny then that there was no US objection to David Ben-Gurion's decision to stage the first ever Israeli election on January 25, 1949 that I'm aware of, despite the fact that over 750,000 Palestinians had been effectively disenfranchised after being driven out of the country in 1948 by Zionist terror gangs and refused re-entry.

And again, as far as I'm aware, no US official has ever since raised the issue of disenfranchised Palestinian refugees as an objection to an Israeli election.

Friday, April 25, 2014

History 1, Nick Cater 0

In his attack on Australian historians who dare to examine critically (or revise) accepted Anzac dogmas, Anzac cynics blind to reality: Historians of the Left fudge the facts to fit their own myth (22/4/14), The Australians' Nick Cater writes mockingly:

"Major General Herbert Cox must have been mistaken when he told officers departing for France in April 1916 they were fighting for 'the suppression of a tyrannical and brutal militarism, the refutation of the abominable doctrine that Might is Right, the defence of the rights of weaker nations, and the solemnity and binding nature of treaties'."

Fine sentiments indeed, Nick. However, in the case of the Arabs during and after WW1, that's all they were.

When it comes to a tyrannical and brutal militarism, the British and the French, in the case of Palestine and Syria respectively, simply replaced the Ottoman Turkish version with their own. The British, moreover, paved the way for the apartheid Zionist version which continues to plague Palestine and its neighbours to this day.

As for the solemnity and binding nature of treaties, the British failed to honour the Hussein-McMahon Treaty of 1915, in which they had promised independence in exchange for the Arab Revolt against the Turks (1916-18), and took over Palestine as a colony (or 'mandate' if you're into euphemisms).

Finally, with regard to the Palestinian rights of self-determination and independence, the British ignored these at every turn, preferring instead to flood Palestine with Zionist settlers who, in 1948, did away with them entirely and went on to rule Palestine according to the abominable doctrine that Might is Right.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Cleaning Up the Mess at Q&A 2

And Bob Carr's answer to Greg Weiss' question?

"I agree with you completely"!!!

Carr then went on to explain that proliferating Israeli settlements on the West Bank and a two-state solution to the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians simply don't mix.

Pressed repeatedly by compere Tony Jones to say whether he thought Gillard was capable of making up her own mind on the issue of support for Israel, instead of simply saying the bleeding obvious - well, no - and pointing out that it had taken a full scale revolt of the Labor Party, at both Cabinet and Caucus levels, to persuade her to back down over a mere routine issue (upgrading Palestine's status at the UN), the silly bugger launched into an embarrassing 'Do you have any idea how much I love Israel?' rap:

"I am in full agreement with liberal Jewish activists... that... if there is no two-state solution... Israel is left managing [!!!] a large and growing Arab population into the future indefinitely... I have got enormous sympathy with the people of Israel... I set up Labor Friends of Israel... I told the Palestinians to talk to the Israelis... I was the first... to say that Israel had a right to defend itself after the rocket attacks from Gaza."

Still, even these professions of love for Israel were way too much for the absurd Brendan O'Neill of the UK website Spiked Online. He caricatured Carr's position by asserting that it echoed "this old, quite ugly prejudice about Zionist groups or Jewish groups being the puppet masters of politics," thus demonstrating his complete incapacity to recognise that we have here a serious problem with serious consequences. But for the pernicious and long-term hold of the US Israel lobby over the US Congress, for example, the Carr-Gillard contretemps would probably never have happened. Just to remind us of what's at stake here, here is the first hand testimony, dating back to the mid-70s, of ex-Congressman James Abourezk:

"Most lobbies, no matter how good they are, fade into insignificance beside the most effective - and vicious - of them all. Israel's lobby in Washington, known simply as 'the Israeli lobby,' or 'the Lobby,' has refined to a high art form the techniques of putting pressure on members of Congress and on the Administration... The way the Lobby works is perhaps best described by by its effort to override President Ford's threat against Israel in 1975. Ford and Kissinger were insisting on a change in Israel's policy toward negotiation with the Arab countries following the 1973 war, and Israel was resisting. Ford then announced a 'reassessment' of America's policy toward Israel, meaning that our arms shipments to Israel would be stopped until it came around to our way of thinking.

"The Lobby drafted a letter to Ford with the intention of having a great many senators sign it, essentially threatening to override Ford's arms blockade. Lobby operatives took the letter to Senator George McGovern's staff, telling them that Senator Ted Kennedy had already signed it, and that McGovern shouldn't be the only prospective presidential candidate left off the list. Then producing McGovern's signature, they confronted Kennedy's staff with the same ultimatum.

"One senator, who shall remain nameless, told me on the night before the letter was released to the press that he had refused to sign it, understanding full well that it was to be used to prevent a US government initiative in the Middle East. When his name appeared on the list of signatories the next day, I asked him what had happened. 'Jim,' he said, 'after I refused the Lobby, I received phone calls from four or five Jews in my state who had worked to get me elected last time around. These weren't guys who had simply written checks. They were professionals, men who actually left their offices and businesses to work in my election. How could I refuse them?'

"The Lobby reached its high point that year, obtaining 76 senators' signatures on the letter, which forced President Ford to back down and to drop his reassessment of our policy toward Israel." (Advise & Dissent: Memoirs of an Ex-Senator, 1989, pp 167-68)

Those such as O'Neill who, for whatever reason, cannot see the elephant in the room here are frankly unfit to comment on public affairs. Alas, this Israel lobby denier felt compelled to go even further, and began banging on about "trendy Westerners" boycotting Israeli artists and academics. This unfortunately had the effect of spurring Carr to declare, yet again, his love for Israel: "I happen to be a strong opponent of BDS against Israel, a strong opponent."

Finally, we had the most godawful rant by Jewish feminist Eva Cox, who trotted out such gems as:

"Israel behaves extremely badly and deserves to be criticised sometimes in terms of the fact that it does not act in an appropriate way in relation to some things, despite the fact that all of those things are happening;" and "I agree with Brendan. We have to be very careful when we criticise Jewish lobbies and Israeli lobbies... because they are often demonised."

From apartheid to inappropriate Israel!

Her rant ended with this utterly insulting (to Carr), wholly incorrect (he did not say anything 'nasty' to Gillard), and censorious (please shut up) outburst:

"When the foreign minister of Australia says something nasty to the prime minister of Australia, it's not going to solve the Middle Eastern problems, so can we please shut up and let people sort of try and work out how they do it, because otherwise they end up with silly arguments like this."

Frankly, Cox was even more of an embarrassment than O'Neill.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Cleaning Up the Mess at Q&A 1

Monday night's Q&A really was a real dog's dinner on the question of Palestine/Israel. Averse to mess, I'll try and clear some of it up in the next few posts.

For example, the opening question on the subject by audience member Greg Weiss (which I've edited for clarity) must surely be one of the most confused and problematic ever asked on the program: 

My question is to Bob Carr... 6 million Jews were murdered while waiting for the world to speak up om their behalf. None did. That is why the Jewish people have been forced to... have their own lobby groups... What is the problem then with a Jewish lobby group? I see no difference between it pushing for its own case any more than a gay lobby group fighting for gay rights... Why single out the Jewish lobby group...?

If Jews, as a faith grouping, had formed a lobby in the wake of the Nazi genocide to blow the whistle on genuine cases of anti-Semitism, no reasonable human being could possibly have a problem with it.

While there are Jews, there is no such thing as "the Jewish people." This is a construct of political Zionism, the ideology which underpins the ongoing colonisation (1917-2014) of Palestine by Western Jewish colons.

The Zionist movement's only interest in the plight of Europe's Jews in the 30s and 40s was to channel them into Palestine in accordance with its goal of achieving a demographic majority there at the expense of the country's indigenous Arab population.

Unlike the gay lobby, assuming there is one, the Zionist lobby fights not for the rights of Jews as Jews but to sustain and promote a supremacist 'Jewish' state in Palestine at the expense of the fundamental human and political rights of Palestine's indigenous Arab population.

This work of sustaining and promoting Israel, moreover, involves the use of a range of tactics designed to influence governments (and societies), particularly those of the US and its Anglophone client regimes such as Australia and Canada. In Australia, these include ensuring that Zionist propaganda dominates all discussion of the Palestine/Israel issue in the ms media; sponsoring propaganda tours of Israel by politicians, journalists and other community leaders; smearing critics of Israel as anti-Semites; and the strategic use of political donations to ensure that both government and opposition adopt pro-Israel foreign policy positions.

This means in practice that while Greg Weiss, an Australian with no real connection whatever to Palestine, has the 'right' as a Jew under Israeli law to migrate to Israel and take up citizenship there, millions of Palestine's indigenous people must remain in exile, denied the fundamental right to return to the homes and lands from which they were driven by Zionist terror gangs in 1948, and no one here bats an eyelid.

Weiss then has the hide to ask: 'Why single out the Jewish (actually Zionist) lobby?'

To be continued...

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The Grooming of Gareth Evans & Pat Moynihan

"It took the UN far too long to realize that Zionism is a form of racism, representing a blatant violation of the norms of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the standards of international law. It was only in the wake of the 1967 war and the consequent war crimes perpetrated by the Israeli occupation forces, challenged by the renewed resistance of the Palestinian Arab people led by the PLO, that the UN corrected its record and passed General Assembly Resolution 3379 of November 1975 determining that 'Zionism is a form of racism and racial discrimination'. And it is, indeed, most regrettable that in the wake of the Middle East Peace Conference convened in Madrid in October 1991, co-sponsored by the USA and the former USSR, the General Assembly muddied its record again by passing Resolution 46/86 of December 1991, revoking Resolution 3379." (Uri Davis, Apartheid Israel: Possibilities for the Struggle Within, 2003, p 3)

Gareth Evans, Australia's foreign minister (ALP) from 1988 to 1996, was a recruit/dupe in the Zionist campaign to have UNGA Resolution 3379 revoked, and is today President of the Brussels-based International Crisis Group. An ally of Bob Carr's in the revelatory events of November 2012, chronicled in Carr's Diary of a Foreign Minister, Evans launched the book earlier this month. The following report on that occasion intriguingly harks back to Evans' participation in the 18-year Zionist assault on Resolution 3379:

"Mr Evans, an informal sounding board for Mr Carr during his stint as foreign minister... said lobbyists from the Victorian Jewish community had influenced him to campaign against the 'Zionism as Racism' resolution when he was foreign minister - and he was proud to do so because the cause was just. 'But it also lost me... when it lost its way, as it continues to do to this day, on the larger Palestinian issue'." (Gillard cloth-eared on Israel, says Evans, Brad Norington, The Australian, 15/4/14)

Isn't it amazing, the almost mesmeric sway these Zionist lobbyists seem to exercise over our politicians? Here's the even more opaque Zionist version of Evan's falling under the influence:

"Australia will back an attempt to seek support among Asian-Pacific nations to have the iniquitous United Nations Resolution 3379 equating Zionism with racism rescinded. Foreign Minister Gareth Evans gave this undertaking to a joint delegation from the Zionist Federation of Australia and the Executive Council of Australian Jewry in Canberra last week." (Australia will back move to rescind 'Zionism - racism', Australian Jewish News, 13/4/90)

You will not, of course, be surprised to know that Mark Leibler (now of AIJAC, then of the ZFA) was as integral to the process of grooming (or influencing if you prefer) Evans in 1990 as he was of grooming Gillard in 2012. Now while we know that Evans' was groomed by Leibler and Co, neither Evans' reference, nor the Zionist report of 1990, sheds any real light on the details.

We do though have details of the grooming of Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan (1927-2003), the US Ambassador to the United Nations (1975-76) and the spearhead of USrael's opposition to Resolution 3379 in the UN, by Ziocon Godfather and editor of the influential US magazine Commentary, Norman Podhoretz (1930-).

It is tempting to see in Leibler's grooming of Evans in 1990 a parallel with Podhoretz's grooming of Moynihan in 1975. The following account of the latter comes from Norman Podhoretz: A Biography by Thomas L. Jeffers (2010)

"On July 9, 1975, Barbara M. White cabled the American Mission a euphoric report on the UN-sponsored International Women's Year Conference in Mexico City. Moynihan's initial reaction was happy: the United States could at last get on the side of the LDCs and, under the banner of feminism, pull some of them away from the Soviet lodestone. There were poisoned dregs at the bottom of the cup, however. With Israel and America voting no, the Conference had also called for the 'elimination of... Zionism, apartheid, [and] racial discrimination.' It was what Garment later named 'the thing from 20,000 Leagues Below the Sea.' He and Weaver told Moynihan that 'this is trouble, Zionism as a form of racism.' And Pat, leaning in, said, 'Well, isn't it?' Knowing next to nothing about the origins of Zionism or the subtler permutations of anti-Semitism, Moynihan didn't, Garment remembered, think it 'unreasonable for an ethicist to say that this is a Jewish people just taking the land from Palestinian people and declaring 'you're not going to come here, we're here'.'

"Bringing Moynihan up to speed, Garment and Weaver called on their 'biggest gun,' Podhoretz, more knowledgeable and more intimate with Moynihan than they were, to conduct dinner-table seminars. Podhoretz himself had learned a great deal about the history of the Zionism-as-racism calumny from the English-born Princeton scholar Bernard Lewis and got Moynihan to read him, too. Garment, 'though Jewish, was only just getting interested' in Israel, Podhoretz recalled: 'What Pat and Len together didn't know could, as the cliche goes, fill an encyclopedia.' But they soon caught on, Moynihan being 'a quick study, as intelligent a person as you could ever meet in higher walks of life, and he rigorously cross-examined me.' He also invited Podhoretz to compose most of the speech, especially the first paragraph, that he would give in the General Assembly when a UN resolution defining and denouncing Zionism as 'a form of racism and racial discrimination' came up for a vote - and passed." (p 182)

How utterly grotesque that a man like Moynihan, who started out with a perfectly accurate understanding of the dynamics of the Zionist project, should go on to became a mere mouthpiece for Podhoretz.

Here, BTW, is the opening paragraph of his aforementioned speech, assumed in his Wikipedia entry to be all his own work. It's Zionist hysteria and bombast at its best? worst?

"The United States rises to declare before the General Assembly of the United Nations, and before the world, that it does not acknowledge, it will not abide by, it will never acquiesce in this infamous act. Not three weeks ago, the United States representative in the Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Committee pleaded in measured and fully considered terms for the United Nations not to do this thing. It was, he said, 'obscene.' It is something more today, for the furtiveness with which this obscenity first appeared among us has been replaced by a shameless openness. There will be time enough to contemplate the harm this act will have done the United Nations. Historians will do that for us, and it is sufficient for the moment only to note the foreboding fact. A great evil has been loosed upon the world. The abomination of anti-semitism - as this year's Nobel Peace Laureate Andrei Sakharov observed in Moscow just a few days ago - the abomination of anti-semitism has been given the appearance of international sanction.. The General Assembly today grants symbolic amnesty - and more to the murderers of the six million European Jews. Evil enough in itself, but more ominous by far is the realization that now presses upon us - the realization that if there were no General Assembly, this could never have happened."

It'd be interesting to know whether Gareth Evans' promise to "back an attempt to seek support among Asian-Pacific nations," as the AJN put it, involved him in Australian taxpayer-funded travel to the region on Israel's behalf, and if it did, what exactly his talking points were. Did he too play the anti-Semitism and Holocaust cards I wonder?

Monday, April 21, 2014

The Knives Are Out...

... for Bob Carr in the Murdoch press:

Gerard Henderson: A great read with deeply troubling insights into the mind of Carr and his Israel-lobby obsession, The Australian, 19/4/14:

"Diary of a Foreign Minister indicates that Bob Carr is somewhat unhinged in so far as Israel is concerned."

Whereas Gerard Henderson's columns reveal an always rational and objective approach to everything.

"Carr is ready to bag what he terms the 'Israel lobby' in Australia... But he offers no criticism of of such an entity as a 'Palestinian lobby'..."

Would that be a Palestinian lobby with or without a direct line to the PM's office?

Michael Danby: Throwing the Jews under the bus won't help drive the Labor Party to power, The Australian, 19/4/14:

"Let's look not at some of the anonymous trolls on Twitter empowered by Bob the book-pedlar but at people willing to put their names to their bigotry, who feel empowered by a man of his high rank indulging in a false and disgraceful critique 'of the unhealthy influences', which he was 'shining a spotlight on', of the 'Melbourne-based Israel lobby'. My ears burned. I was sent messages by Carr's biggest fans such as 'you are scum', 'Jew loving arsehole' and even alerted that 'we all know what you people are up to... same old nonsense as last 2000 years'."

Bigotry? Is that all, Michael? Just be thankful you're not a Palestinian! If you were, you'd not only be subjected to Zionist bigotry but Zionist brutality in spades and on a daily basis.

"Of course, all the Jewish individuals who dared advance a view slightly different from Carr's global vision - my colleague Mark Dreyfus, respected community leaders such as Albert Dadon, lawyer Mark Leibler and I - support a two-state solution, Australia's policy since the partition of the British mandate since 1948."

Want to know the shortest book ever written? Our Epic Struggle for a Two-State Solution by Danby, Dreyfus, Dadon and Leibler.

"None of the Australians stereotyped and caricatured by Carr... are the fanatics he pretends they are. Leibler is a mate of Noel Pearson. His firm Arnold Bloch Leibler has a legacy of supporting indigenous communities and leaders..."

Not to mention a legacy of supporting Israel's dispossession, exile and occupation of indigenous Palestinians.

"... and Dadon has taken his career as international jazz musician to new heights."

But of course. Nero only fiddled while Rome burned. Dadon fiddles while an entire country burns.

"He says nothing about the abuse of African Muslims in Darfur or the Turkish Uighur of Xinjiang. Where are he and his Twitter-troll supporters as Bashar al-Assad drops barrel bombs on cities every day? Yes, I suppose he perfunctorily dispensed some Australian aid. Excuse me, but I think any of these issues are more pressing and ought to be the subject of public mobilisations, rather than a young, struggling Jewish family making a life in a new apartment on a hill in East Jerusalem."

... in violation of the Geneva Conventions!

Sunday, April 20, 2014

The Carr Diary 12: Reflections 6

In his Diary entry for 27 November, 2012, Carr tells how he received a phone call from Kevin Rudd, "speaking in that sinister undertone that bodes no charity."

You might remember the msm media seizing on this and hyping it as one of the Diary's quotable quotes. Typically, however, what immediately followed it - a matter of far more import - received scant attention:

"Darkly he commented on the state of affairs, rehearsing the history of his relations with the Israel lobby, once so happy, now so gloomy. How much of this is about money, I asked him. He said that about one-fifth of the money he had raised in the 2007 election campaign had come from the Jewish community." (p 232)

He goes on to describe the cabinet meeting from which Gillard emerged, virtually bereft of support:

"So nine ministers spoke against the Prime Minister's position and [defence minister Stephen] Smith had spoken at the earlier meeting. That was ten. On the other side, only two [Shorten and Conroy, described as having "an umbilical attachment to the cause of Israel"] had spoken for her. But the Prime Minister repeated that it was her right to decide and she would adhere to her previous position. Her brisk efficiency descended into a style that was icy and robotic." (p 236)

The next morning Carr informed Gillard, who had obviously learnt nothing from her lack of support in cabinet, what was being planned for the coming caucus meeting:

"I said the motion in caucus would no longer be for Australia to support a 'yes' vote at the UN... but for Australia to support an abstention. I saw fear dance in her eyes. She had not been expecting abstention business." (p 238)

In caucus, Gillard had the choice of either sticking to her guns and going down for Israel, or else caving in and so retaining her position as PM. It was a no-brainer. Carr writes of her decision to finally back down in the face of a caucus revolt against her hitherto adamantine refusal to contemplate anything other than an Israel YES vote (in the form of a Palestine NO vote) with all that that signified: "For a moment at least, the universe was moving in accordance with the laws of justice." (p 240)

He adds: "The Prime Minister... had a word with me outside, saying she wanted help in seeing that the story wasn't pitched in terms of her being done over..." (p 240)

What an extraordinary state of affairs! As I indicated in my 18/1/13 post, The PM Who Put Her Job on the Line for Israel, the day an Australian prime minister took her leadership down to the wire for Israeli apartheid must surely rank as one of the most bizarre and ignominious moments in Australia's political history. The msm media at the time, of course, simply failed to register this. Thank God Carr has chronicled it for us. He will be forever in our debt for having done so. I'll let him have the last word:

"I rang the local ambassador of the Palestinians to tell him the decision. He was thrilled. 'I can show my face in the Arab world,' I joked. I rang [US ambassador] Jeff Bleich to break the news that we won't be sticking to them. But he had been primed with a good line, I guess from the Prime Minister's office. 'I hear you and the Prime Minister stopped a 'yes' vote getting up,' he said. Er, yes, I concurred. I told him it confirmed a shift in thinking in my party - tired of Netanyahu and the bellicose right wing and sick of the spread of settlements. He agreed Israel had lost the public relations battle. He said we couldn't be accused of changing our vote to earn Security Council votes - we didn't promise anything. That's right, we got elected without a commitment and simply delivered. I got a message from James that Yuval was unhappy with the decision and my role in it. It had been my doing. Correct. The column of ten nations, die-hards, glued on Israel supporters - Micronesia and the Marshall Islands - had just been reduced by one. A message to the settlers and the fanatics in Israel, a message to the noble Israeli liberals and moderates, a message to a suffering West Bank population, battered and trapped, a message to the UN membership about Australia, the country they just elected to the Security Council." (pp 240-41)

Saturday, April 19, 2014

The Carr Diary 11: Reflections 5

November 20, 2012 sees another 'Australian' vote in the UN, another day of shame in the UN:

"To feed my gloomy irritation I sustain another defeat at the hands of the Likudniks. This is over how we vote in the UN in a dispute between Israel and Lebanon. When I met the Lebanese Foreign Minister in Cairo in September I told him we would be more sympathetic than we'd been in the past on the annual General Assembly motion that deals with the 2006 destruction by the Israeli air force of the oil-storage tanks in the Jiyeh Power Plant in Lebanon. This caused an oil slick along the Lebanese and Syrian coasts. This motion calls on Israel to provide compensation to Lebanon and Syria. We had voted against the resolution on the grounds that we do not consider the General Assembly the appropriate forum. But this implies we are unsympathetic and in my view Lebanon is a country with which we have friendly relations. Moreover, we have over 181,000 people of Lebanese ancestry living in Australia. I wanted to abstain. For some reason this motion got threaded through the Prime minister's office - even though it doesn't deal with Palestinian status or the Israel-Palestine dispute - and today I got a message that we were not to shift our vote to an abstention but were to continue to vote against this resolution. This would place us with only seven nations." (pp 223-24)

In a series of text message exchanges between Carr and the PM, Gillard asserts that she alone has the final word on all UN resolutions. Carr, less than impressed, turns to former Labor foreign minister Gareth Evans:

"I rang Gareth Evans and he said a 'no' vote by us would be the worst Australian foreign- policy decision in a generation. He told me to fight all the way." (p 226)

The November 22 vote on Lebanon's Israeli-generated oil slick is the last straw:

"[T]oday... I get the report from the UN mission: 152 nations voted yes, a few abstained, seven voted no. In this last category: the US, Canada, the Marshall Islands, Nauru, Micronesia, Israel and - disgracefully, shamefully - us. The shame." (p 227)

A call to the PM on the fast-approaching Palestinian status vote elicits this:

"She tells me the Jewish community remains very important and they won't settle for anything other than a 'no' vote, that they figure prominently in fundraising and they're big in Victoria." (p 229)

IOW, bend the knee and kiss the ring, Bob, just like I do.

The fight is on.

To be continued...

Friday, April 18, 2014

Baruch O'Farrell's Other 'Memory Lapse'

That deadly bottle of 59 Penfold Grange Hermitage was not the only example of Premier Baruch O'Farrell's 'memory lapses.'

Time to re-read my 29/1/13 post, Not So Fast, Baruch O'Farrell.

The Carr Diary 10: Reflections 4

Carr writes on October 17:

"So far there's been no evidence of the Arabs mobilising because we've failed to reply to the Palestinian letter [asking how we intend to vote]." (p 193)

This failure of the (retarded? slumbering?) Arab states to raise the issue of Palestine with Australia comes as a relief to Carr. Surely, you think, that's an end of the matter for him. Why not read it as a sign that the Arab states don't give a toss about Palestine, that our bid for a SC seat is therefore effectively in the bag, and simply fall in line with the PM's resolve to vote down the Palestinian's bid for upgraded status in the UN?

But no, an odd thing happens. Carr begins to brood. Deep in the recesses of his deeply pragmatic being, something stirs. A sense that something still isn't quite right? Dare I say it, a conscience?

It's November 10, 2012:

"Flying from Singapore to Sydney. Our stance on the Middle East is shameful, in lockstep with the Likud, designed to feed the worst instincts of Israel and encourage it to self-destruct, placing us with the Marshall Islands and Canada and rejecting the entire Arab world and the Palestinians. First the Prime Minister stopped a message to the Palestinians before the UN vote that we would 'not oppose' enhanced Palestinian status. She was right tactically because not responding did not destroy our chances... I readily concede all that. But it would have been the better course to have told them it was our intention to abstain, the better policy, the honourable one, the position in Australia's interests. Then she swiftly overruled my approval for our UN mission voting in favour of an Egyptian motion on non-proliferation in the Middle East. We had to tell the Egyptians the reversal had been made 'at the highest level'. In other words, the Prime Minister had overruled her Foreign Minister. I'm advised by our UN mission that Egypt and the Arab League are forming the view that having been elected to the Security Council, Australia has now walked away: 'after you got elected this is all we get.' This made me wince. Netanyahu is spreading more settlements and this week I wanted to issue a statement using the word 'condemn', as the UK did... But all statements on the Middle East have to be threaded through the Prime Minister's office. Back came the reply: one, we don't use the word 'condemn'; two, it must go past her staffer Bruce Wolpe and Cabinet Secretary Mark Dreyfus; and three, whatever we do, advise the Israeli ambassador first. But this morning I ring James from the airport lounge in Singapore to move things along and I get the advice that any statement on settlements - even that 'we express concern' - is vetoed by the Prime Minister. He was told this by Richard Maude, her foreign policy adviser, the diplomat on her staff. Extraordinary. We can do nothing." (pp 212-13)

He concludes, in as succinct and accurate a summing up of Australia's Middle East policy as it's possible to make:

"We are not running an Australian foreign policy. It's not even pro-Israeli, in the deepest Rabin-style understanding of the country's survival; that is, an acknowledgment that without a Palestinian state, Israel will morph into an apartheid state with a burgeoning captive Palestinian population denied civil rights.... Subcontracting our foreign policy to party donors is what this involves. Or appears to involve." (p 214)

To reiterate his earlier words: "Extraordinary. We can do nothing."

To be continued...

Thursday, April 17, 2014

The Carr Diary 9: Reflections 3

A clearly frustrated Carr resolves to face the Prime Minister:

"But the Arabs all know that on Palestinian entry to UNESCO last year we didn't even abstain; we voted 'no'. So all this effort for nothing? I quietly resolve that back in Australia I'm going to have to persuade the Prime Minister we need an abstention on the resolution on Palestinian status." (p 177)

On October 10, 2012:

"I went to the Prime Minister's office... I sat down with her, Hubbard and Richard Maude. I made the case on the Palestinians. She grew uneasy as I explained it was coming to a head; we could lose all 21 votes of the Arab League and more from the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation. I told her I'd spoken to Yuval Rotem, the Israeli Ambassador, yesterday and urged him to cut us some slack, to accept we could abstain and not kick up a fuss. He said he'd speak to Netanyahu. I explained to the Prime Minister our intelligence confirmed that earlier this year the Israelis were expecting us to abstain. We wouldn't surprise them in going this route. So abstaining would be no big deal. We'd be part of a small minority if we didn't - that is, if we voted 'no' - and we would blow our support from all those Arab states, and that would cost us the Security Council election. Her eyes shifted worriedly. At least she allowed me to explore the idea of the Israelis agreeing to let this slip through." (p 187)

Those prime ministerial eyes say it all. Fear! But of what, exactly?

I'm reminded of the words of the anonymous Australian official quoted by the Sydney Morning Herald's Peter Hartcher earlier in the same year: "It wouldn't matter whether it was John Howard or Kevin Rudd or Tony Abbott in the prime minister's chair... [the Israelis] know they've got us by the balls... partly because of the Israel lobby." (Betrayed PM should not be taken for granted by Israel, 26/2/10) What gives here?

The day after. There's a dawning awareness that having Israeli hands on your balls is, well, frankly undignified, not to mention downright uncomfortable:

"The issue dominates my life. Yuval hasn't got back to me to give me the decision I want, namely advice that he's spoken to Netanyahu and Netanyahu thinks in the greater good he can live with Australia moving from opposition to the abstain column. For God's sake, I repeat to him, you get us on the Security Council for 2 years where we can do you some favours. Parliamentary Secretary Richard Marles, who's part of the pro-Israel Victorian Labor Right, agrees with me and likes the strategy of getting Yuval's consent (pathetic though I think this is). Mark Dreyfus, an intelligent supporter of Israel and Jewish to boot, takes some more arguing. I have a minor explosion of anger and frustration and point out that it's an appalling position if Australia allows a group of businessmen in Melbourne to veto policy on the Middle East." (pp 187-88)

Exactly! The penny finally drops for Bob Carr.

To be continued...

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

The Carr Diary 8: Reflections 2

As I sought to show in my last post, when it comes to Palestine/Israel, former Labor foreign minister Bob Carr is no radical critic of the Israeli apartheid status quo.

So the question arises: what caused this amiable, mild-mannered, overly-pragmatic, pro-Israel pillar of the Labor establishment to blow the whistle on Australia's Israel lobby?

Let's begin by pointing out the bleeding obvious: Carr's whistleblowing Diary of a Foreign Minister is no comprehensive critique such as Mearsheimer & Walt's seminal study, The Israel Lobby & US Foreign Policy (2006). Nor is it in any way an Australian version of US Congressman Paul Findley's They Dare to Speak Out: People & Institutions Confront Israel's Lobby (1985). In fact, I can guarantee that this widely-read Americanophile has neither of these superb books on his shelves. Still, I give him his due here merely by mentioning those two great works in relation to his.

Without detracting in any way from the importance of what Carr has done - shining a light on possibly the darkest corner of Australian politics - it should be kept in mind that Diary focuses on only the most overtly Likudnik wing of Australia's Israel lobby, the Melbourne-based Australia/Israel and Jewish Affairs Council (AIJAC). The influence and modus operandi of the other Australian Zionist organisations which make up the lobby, the Executive Council of Australian Jewry (ECAJ), the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies, and the Zionist Federation of Australia, are nowhere touched on.

Nor, it should be pointed out, did Carr set out with an axe to grind. His concern is always for the preservation of Israel as a Jewish state. In fact, he's so comfortable with the idea and all that flows from it, namely that millions of Palestinians can remain forever warehoused in refugee camps just so his Australian Jewish friends can call Israel home.

For example, early on in Diary he writes:

"I had told a Jewish delegation that without a Palestinian state they would see Israel bursting with an Arab population; and in 20 years' time it would be young Jews in America leading a campaign to brand Israel an apartheid state and boycott and isolate it." (p 76)

Carr's initial brief as foreign minister was to ensure that Australia beat Finland and Luxembourg to a seat on the United Nations Security Council, and it is in this particular context that his problem with AIJAC begins. Anything to do with Palestine or Palestinians, he makes clear, is a potential stumbling block:

"To win the vote in October... we can't afford to have a vote on some irritating Middle East issue that sees us put our hand up for Israel and lose the support we've carefully cultivated among Arabs and Africans. One vote coming up at the UN is on a motion that criticises Israel for the conditions of Arabs in the occupied territories and I want to support it but I need to manage the local Israel lobby and its faction - 'the falafel faction' as they self-mockingly call themselves - in caucus." (p 95)

There's no anger in Carr at this point. As bizarre as it may seem to a disinterested observer that a foreign lobby should be operating a cross-party faction in Australia's federal parliament, he accepts the 'falafels' merely as a management issue. And how's this for revelation number one; Carr knows that, when the need arises to manage Labor's 'falafels', it's best to ignore the monkeys and go straight to the organ grinder himself:

"I saw Yuval Rotem, the Israeli Ambassador, and asked him to cut us some slack, to watch us vote for the motion without a fuss. I told him we could do some good for Israel as a member of the Security Council for two years. On Tuesday he said he'd take advice on it and today he was back in my office saying he'd cleared it with Jerusalem. Smart politician, he even told me he'd seen Liberal Senator Glenn Searle from Western Australia who, with Labor Melbourne MP Michael Danby, heads the pro-Israel faction." (p 96)

There you have it, straight from the horse's mouth: in a supposedly independent Australia, Middle East policy must first be vetted and approved by Israel, a most extraordinary state of affairs by any reckoning.

Carr even felt the need at the time (June 2012) to flail what passes for a Palestinian lobby in Australia with Zionist propaganda tropes, apparently by way of recompense for discomforting Israel's ambassador:

"I want to meet a Palestinian or Arab delegation for every Jewish or Israeli delegation. So I ticked off a meeting with the Australia Palestine Advocacy Network, whose president, Reverend James Barr, is said to be a political realist... I tell them we oppose settlements but, but I said as long as rockets are launched from Gaza at Israeli towns, support in Israel for a peace settlement will shrink. 'Will you condemn the dividing wall?' they asked. I said if bombs had been going off in central Sydney while I'd been Premier, I would have built a dividing wall." (pp 95-96)

To be continued...

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

The Carr Diary 7: Reflections 1

Having now read just over half of Bob Carr's Diary of a Foreign Minister, I'll venture, in this and the next few posts, some preliminary observations on the man and his motives.

Deep thinker he is not.

He can sit opposite the appalling Condoleezza Rice and listen to her repeating "her argument from our earlier meeting in her office that it would be better for the US to bomb Iran... than leaving it to Israel" without blinking.  (p 114)

Or write of the warmongering Republican senator John (Wayne) McCain (who has just told him that "we've got the Saudis wanting to get involved [in Syria]") that he "is confirmation of my notion that when America produces a public-policy athlete he or she is first class." (p 44)

Of Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Carr can write that he "is forceful, even bossy, but more intellectually supple than I had expected... for example, he said that even before the civil war in Syria, their cities were dilapidated, with few signs of shops or cafes. It was an impoverished society, degraded by dictatorship."  (p 134)

The overweening arrogance of the leader of Ersatz Israel pronouncing on the existence or non-existence of shops and cafes in one of the world's oldest civilizations is lost on Carr. As is the deeply settler-colonial register:

"The Arab countries have moved away from pan-Arabism - secular Arab nationalism - to Islamic regimes without missing a beat... 'How could one stabilise the region given the lack of basic conceptions of individual rights as developed by Locke and Montesquieu?' he asked. 'Politics in the Arab countries were based on tribal or ideological grounds, not on the foundations of economic enfranchisement and freedom." (ibid)

The profoundly Eurocentric Carr, gulled by Netanyahu's pseudo-intellectual name-dropping, is simply blind to the colon's racist discourse.

Then there's the sickening spectacle of the regional bully playing the victim:

"[H]e did not want a new [Palestinian] state that would set out to eradicate Israel. Israel could not rely on anyone else to provide security if it was besieged by 'manic weaponry'. That's when he asked someone to draw aside the curtain of his meeting room in the Knesset and pointed at the horizon. 'I don't want Iran on that hill'." (p 137)

Carr swallows it all:

"While I warned about settlements I didn't even bother registering opposition to a strike on Iran. Who am I to tell them how they should deal with a regime of apocalyptic religious leaders?" (p 137)

Any maniac is good enough for Carr, presumably, providing he can reference Locke or Montesquieu. The fact that said maniac has just been babbling on about Israel being a "Jewish democratic" state switches on no bullshit detector.

Oh, and Carr's reading material? Simon Sebag Montefiore's Jerusalem FFS.

To be continued...

Monday, April 14, 2014

The Carr Diary 6: Carr Gets a Caning

The Sydney Morning Herald's handling of Bob Carr's outing of the hold of the Israel lobby over former prime minister Julia Gillard has been either to ignore it or make light of it. (Needless to say, Carr's other revelation, that around one fifth of the money stashed away in party coffers came from Jewish sources, is completely overlooked.)

Nowhere is the subject even mentioned in the Herald's editorial of 11 April. Instead, donning the mantle of an irate schoolmaster, the editorialist gives Carr a thorough dressing down, as though he were an errant schoolboy:

"Bob Carr has let down his party, his former cabinet colleagues and his country..."(Carr memoir: a triumph of self over selflessness)

And notice who, by contrast, gets Master's approval:

"Carr's successor, Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, has said that 'his gratuitous personal observations and revelations of confidential discussions are unworthy of any Australian politician let alone a foreign minister'."

You've been a bad, bad boy:

"He was premier of NSW for 10 years and did not leave behind a decade's worth of major infrastructure development or public sector reform. Creating national parks was his main legacy..."

It's a wonder Master didn't call him a tree-hugging greenie.

"A triumph of self over selflessness," concludes Master in a statement of the bleeding obvious applicable, I would've thought, to just about all Australian politicians.

Fortunately, Master's pomposity didn't fool all of its readers:

"Passing strange that your editorial makes no mention of Bob Carr's revelations concerning the modus operandi of the Israel lobby and their disproportionate influence over Australia's foreign policy in the Middle East." Sue Daniels, Balmain, 12/4/14)

The verbal caning of Carr continued in Saturday's edition, in a two-page feature by the Herald's political editor, Peter Hartcher. Needless to say, the issue of the lobby was raised only in passing:

"Carr made one strong stand on a matter of policy. He challenged Gillard over her decisions to take Israel's side in its arguments with the Palestinians. He led a cabinet revolt that forced her to reverse her decision. He does us a favour by drawing attention to this. It's not because he's right that Israel is omnipotent. Carr's successful rebellion, self-evidently, proves that it isn't. It's that Carr's position is a marker of change. He was co-founder of Labor Friends of Israel; today he is a leader of pro-Palestinian opinion in Labor. His shift reflects the surging Muslim population in western Sydney. Labor's NSW Right faction, Carr's factional home, is now pro-Palestinian because electoral arithmetic demands it."  (Bob Quixote was no world-beater)

Hartcher, of course, ignores the fact that Carr's testimony relates to Israel lobby group AIJAC's influence over Gillard and her office, not the party as a whole.

As for his bizarre description of Carr as "a leader of pro-Palestinian opinion in Labor," a simple perusal of his Thoughtlines blog reveals Carr as nothing more than a common and garden defender of Israel ("a benchmark of pluralism and democracy"*) who merely has a problem with Israel's colonization of the land necessary for the creation of a Palestinian state on the West Bank. IOW, as someone in the party who takes its rhetoric about a two-state solution seriously, unlike Gillard who only ever paid lip service to the notion.

Furthermore, I challenge Hartcher to produce any statement of support for the Palestinians from the NSW Labor Right, apart from NSW MLC Shaoquett Moselmane.

Finally, Hartcher's linking of Carr's 2012 'rectification' with "the surging Muslim population of western Sydney," whatever that means, is tenuous in the extreme.

Now if the Herald editorialist thinks Bishop is the very model of a modern Australian foreign minister, just look who Hartcher's got the hots for:

"[T]he pointlessness of Carr's tenure, by contrast, shows the purposefulness of Abbott's trip to the three great capitals of north-east Australia. Abbott... has shown that a serious leader can achieve serious outcomes for his country."

And isn't this bloke an interesting choice for an opinion on Carr?

"For Labor, it's the betrayal of a man who was given everything by the party. A Labor MP, Anthony Byrne, says: 'If you ever wanted an example of the narcissism, self-indulgence and immaturity that ran through the labor Party during its 6 years in government, Bob Carr is it."

We're not told, of course, that Byrne is a mate of Michael Danby's, nor that he was rambammed in 2010.

It's hard to believe that Hartcher is the journalist who penned one of the most telling reports on the hold of the Israel lobby over the Labor Party - for which see my 22/6/10 post The Best Israel Policy Money Can Buy. But then the guy's been rambammed, of course - for which see my 18/11/09 post No Hidden Agenda.

Finally, check out Annabel Crabb's dismal contribution in yesterday's Sun-Herald:

"In geopolitical terms, Carr's remarks about the Israel lobby are by far the most actively inflammatory. The Jewry's out on that one, understandably, and will likely remain so for some time." (Carr best taken with a grain of sugar)


[*West Bank settlements always illegal,, 14/2/14)]

Sunday, April 13, 2014

The Carr Diary 5: One Who Only Gargles

If all the letters ever written on the subject of Israel and the Palestinians were laid end to end they'd circle the earth - again and again and again and...

Most, of course, are simply regurgitated Zionist propaganda tropes by the usual suspects and their dupes. The rest try to inject a little balance into the debate, some more successfully than others. A few, however, are so off the wall that they make the informed reader wince. These are the kind of letters that remind us that, while some drink deeply from the fountain of knowledge, others only gargle. Here is one such from Saturday's Sydney Morning Herald:

"There is an alternative explanation to that suggested by Mark Hawthorne for Bob Carr's views on the Israel-Palestine conflict. During the 1970s many people in the Labor Party and broader left became partisans of one or other side of the conflict... Bob Carr was a partisan for Israel, and in 1979 I became a partisan of the Palestinians. Since then the more thoughtful people on both sides came to recognise the conflict was between two peoples who both had national and democratic rights that must be upheld, and that it was in their mutual interest to achieve a political settlement based on two states for two peoples. Carr and I have both made this journey from our respective sides of the argument. The real bigots in this debate are not people like Bob Carr, but the unreconstructed partisans like the Australia-Israel & Jewish Affairs Council on one side, and the Boycott, Divestment & Sanctions movement on the other, who have not had a single new idea between them since the days when the Bay City Rollers were topping the charts." Paul Norton Nerang (Qld)

The Carr Diary 4: An Independent-Thinking PM?

In the wake of Bob Carr's disclosures about the influence exerted over former prime minister Julia Gillard by the Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council (AIJAC), this particular branch of the Israel lobby, as you'd expect, is in denial.

Note, for example, the pretense that, when it comes to Israel, Julia Gillard is really her own woman:

"In a statement released yesterday, AIJAC said Carr's comments were sad and bizarre. 'Mr Carr's spurious allegations that the lobby held 'extraordinary' and 'unhealthy' sway over the views of former prime minister Julia Gillard... shows her a distinct lack of respect,' the statement read. 'Ms Gillard was an independent-thinking prime minister who is fully capable of coming to her own conclusions about optimum Australian foreign policies..." (Falafel factions, Likudniks & Carr... The Australian, 11/4/14)

This hardly squares, however, with the following data in the same report:

"Carr was frustrated and gloomy. Although he was foreign minister, he had little say on Israel policy - at least not publicly - with all official utterances vetted by Gillard's foreign policy adviser Richard Maude*, her staffer Bruce Wolpe and cabinet secretary Mark Dreyfus. Wolpe, who remains Gillard's spokesman, and Dreyfus, who holds the outer Melbourne seat of Isaacs, are Jewish."

Wolpe has been described elsewhere as Gillard's "special emissary to the Jewish community," and as "providing 'inordinate access' to the hardline pro-Israel elements of the Melbourne Jewish community who were having an undue influence on Gillard." (See my 3/12/12 post While You Weren't looking 2.)**

And who could possibly forget former Labor leader Mark Latham's memorable description of Gillard's 're-education' by the CIA?

"Over the years I have received tender messages from Gillard saying how much she misses me in Canberra... One of them concerned her study tour of the US, sponsored by the American government in 2006 - or to use her moniker - 'a CIA re-education course'... She promised 'to catch up when I'm back from the US and I'll show you my CIA-issued ankle holster'. I never got to see her ankles or her holster, but I will say this: you have to hand it to those guys in Washington... Within the space of 2 years they converted her from a highly cynical critic of all matters American into yet another foreign policy sycophant." (See my 22/8/09 post Gillard: 'Sycophant'.)

[*Maude was appointed director-general of Australia's peak foreign intelligence agency, the Office of National Assessments (ONA), last May; **See also PM's Jewish move queried, Michelle Grattan, The Age, 25/1/12.]

Saturday, April 12, 2014

The Carr Diary 3: A Mere Flash in the Pan Really...

He briefly came to prominence...

"Albert Dadon is a Melbourne Jewish lobbyist. He has sought to influence Australian prime ministers and cabinet ministers on both sides of politics. He counts Kevin Rudd as a friend and Tony Abbott as well. He briefly came to prominence for giving a job to Tim Mathieson, Gillard's partner."  (Falafel factions, Likudniks & Carr: inside the battle for Israeli influence, Chip Le Grand, John Ferguson & Troy Bramston, The Australian, 11/4/14)

That's it? That's the lot? That's all he did?

You mean Albert's Australia Israel Cultural Exchanges, his Australia Israel Leadership Forums, and his Australia Israel United Kingdom Leadership Dialogues, which saw Australian and other political 'leaders', MPs, senators and media hacks shuttling back and forth between Canberra, London and Tel Aviv during the term of the last Labor government, was just a figment of my febrile imagination? (1)

You mean those pre-election breakfasts at Albert's Toorak mansion, described by someone in the know as "an opportunity for the ALP to sell itself [to wealthy Jewish donors]," were, to wax Shakespearian, merely "such stuff as [my] dreams are made on"? (2)

You mean those fabulous dinners for Julia at Albert's Italian restaurant, Bakini, were just idle fantasies on my part? (3)


"For all these things [ie for giving Timbo a job] he is unapologetic. And for Carr, he has polite yet powerful scorn. 'What he is trying to do is limit the rights of any members of the Jewish community to have any influence on the political process,' Dadon told The Australian from France. 'We have no apology to make to Mr Carr... for being part of the fabric of this society where we have a voice and influence in public debate. Everyone from car companies to cigarette companies... is trying to have some sort of influence and input in government. So why should we apologise for having a certain outcome by government?'"

Right... except Julia never ever said to Big Tobacco anything like: "I'm looking forward to taking our friendship to new heights during the next term of government." (4)

No, she took her 'friendship' with BT to a new low by introducing plain packaging for cigarettes.

(What a pity she didn't introduce similar legislation for Israeli products: those photos of cancerous tumours and emaciated sufferers that now adorn cigarette packets in Australia could be replaced on imported Israeli goods with images of tanks and warplanes in action, swaggering troops and settlers, checkpoints, apartheid walls, demolished homes and torched olive groves!)

"'There are no apologies to be made and the fact he is singling us out with a finger is reminiscent of a certain era when Jews were limited in having a voice in political debate'."

What are you trying to say here, Albert?

[(1) See my 25/10/10 post Record Rambam;(2) See my 20/8/10 post A Pre-Poll Breakfast Tradition;(3) See my 7/6/12 post Spilling the Cannellini Beans; (4) See my 20/8/10 post A Pre-Poll Breakfast Tradition.]

Friday, April 11, 2014

The Carr Diary 2: Israel Lobby Deniers

In his new book, Diary of a Foreign Minister, former foreign minister Bob Carr talks of an Israel lobby exercising an extraordinary influence over former  PM Julia Gillard, but according to some folk he's either a bigot or a conspiracy-theorist. Meet the Israel lobby deniers:

Michael Danby (Shadow Minister for Israel and all-round mensch):

Louise Yaxley: He also talks about the Jewish lobby or the pro-Israel lobby in Melbourne running the country and says it has an extraordinary influence over Julia Gillard's office. What do you make of that?  
Michael Danby: Well, I put it in the same category as all of the other claims. It was, no lobby in Australia I understand has that kind of influence. It's laughable. But I suppose in the current climate, as George Brandis says, it's OK to be a bigot. ...
LY: But how much influence did the pro-Israel lobby have over Julia Gillard's office in your view.
MD: As much influence as any other lobby does...
LY: And is that why Julia Gillard took that position that she did about how Australia should vote at the UN?
MD: I think she took that position because she believed that the best way to a peace settlement... and to end the issue of the settlements is a peace settlement. (Labor MP Michael Danby says Bob Carr 'nutty' and 'maniacal' in interview: bigoted views,, 10/4/14)

Mark Leibler (Australia-Israel & Jewish Affairs Council):

"How does the Jewish lobby control the prime minister? Through donations to the ALP and sending people to Israel? I mean, give me a break. Would anyone seriously accept that?... When we've got an issue... which needs to be raised, we haven't had a problem in getting access to either ALP or liberal prime ministers or foreign ministers and so it should be. Any representative of a community organisation, if they've got something serious to say, they'll get the access." (Former foreign minister Bob Carr says 'pro-Israel lobby' influenced government policy,, 10/4/14)

Robert Goot (Executive Council of Australian Jewry):

"These claims border on conspiracy theories which make for salacious gossip and help sell books but bear no relation to reality." (The book salesman,, 10/4/14)

Barry Cohen (retired federal Labor minister):

"I have seen what Bob Carr has written about the power of the pro-Israel lobby. You want to know what I think of Bob's comments? Here's what I think. I think it's bullshit." (Reasons stack up for ALP's simmering Israel divide, Mark Hawthorne, Sydney Morning Herald, 11/4/14)

Thursday, April 10, 2014

The Carr Diary 1

Former foreign minister Bob Carr has just shone the light, albeit a weak one (but better than none), on a dark corner of Australian political life, the distorting influence of the Israel lobby on Australian foreign policy in the Middle East. Some excerpts from the current reportage:

7.30 Report, 9/4/14:

Sarah Ferguson: Let's go to the book. The strongest criticism of all... is aimed at the Melbourne Jewish lobby. Now, there are lobby groups for every cause under the sun. What's wrong with the way that group operates?

Bob Carr: Well the important point about a diary of a foreign minister is that you shine light on areas of government that are otherwise in darkness and the influence of lobby groups is one of those areas. And what I've done is to spell out how the extremely conservative instincts of the pro-Israel lobby in Melbourne was exercised through the then-prime minister's office... I found it very frustrating that we couldn't issue, for example, a routine expression of concern about the spread of Israeli settlements on the West Bank. Great blocks of housing for Israeli citizens going up on land that everyone regards as part of a future Palestinian state, if there is to be a two-state solution resolving the standoff between Palestinians and Israelis in the Middle East.

SF: You're saying that the Melbourne Jewish lobby had a direct impact on foreign policy as it was operated from inside Julia Gillard's cabinet?

BC: Yeah, I would call it the Israel lobby - I think that's important. But certainly they enjoyed extraordinary influence. I had to resist it and my book tells the story of that resistance coming to a climax when there was a dispute on the floor of caucus about my recommendation that we don't block the Palestinian bid for increased non-state status at the United Nations.

SF: They're still a very small group of people. How do you account for them wielding so much power?  

BC: I think party donations and a program of giving trips to MPs and journalists to Israel. But that's not to condemn them. I mean, other interest groups do the same thing. But it needs to be highlighted because I think it reached a very unhealthy level. I think the great mistake of the pro-Israel lobby in Melbourne is to express an extreme right-wing Israeli view rather than a more tolerant liberal Israeli view, and in addition to that, to seek to win on everything, to block the foreign minister of Australia through their influence with the prime minister's office, from even making the most routine criticism of Israeli settlement policy using the kind of language that a conservative foreign secretary from the UK would use in a comparable statement at the same time.

Sydney Morning Herald, 10/4/14:

"Bob Carr has published private messages between himself and Julia Gillard to reveal the 'extraordinary' level of influence the pro-Israel lobby had on the former prime minister's office. In a remarkable disclosure of private conversations, Mr Carr said he chose to publish the text messages in his book - Diary of a Foreign Minister - without getting Ms Gillard's permission, because to do so was in the national interest. He also describes Israel's former ambassador as 'cunning' and reveals his fights with the self-described pro-Israel 'falafel faction' in Labor's caucus that includes Jewish MPs Mark Dreyfus and Michael Danby... 'The public should know how foreign policy gets made, especially when it appears the prime minister is being heavily lobbied by one interest group with a stake in Middle East policy.'... Mr Carr's criticisms of Israel touch the highest levels of the Israeli government. Mr Carr describes Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman as 'gloomy, taciturn', and the former Israeli ambassador Yuval Rotem as 'the cunning Yuval'. In diary entries Mr Carr reveals just how deep his division with Ms Gillard went. He complains that Ms Gillard would not even let him criticise Israeli West Bank settlements due to her fear it would anger Australia's pro-Israel lobby - a reference to the Melbourne-based Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council - which Mr Carr says had a direct line into the prime minister's office. 'So, we can't even 'express concern' without complaint,' Mr Carr writes. 'This lobby must fight every inch.'

"Reproducing private text messages, Mr Carr suggests Ms Gillard's support of Israel was so immovable that she would not even allow him to change Australia's vote on what he considered to be a minor UN motion. 'Julia - motion on Lebanon oil spill raises no Palestinian or Israel security issues. In that context I gave my commitment to Lebanon,' Mr Carr writes in a text message. 'No reason has been given to me to change,' Ms Gillard reportedly replies. 'Julia - not so simple,' Mr Carr responds. 'I as foreign minister gave my word. I was entitled to because it had nothing to do with Palestinian status or security of Israel.' Ms Gillard shuts him down in a final terse message: 'Bob... my jurisdiction on UN resolutions isn't confined to ones on Palestine and Israel'." (Bob Carr's texts to Gillard reveal 'extraordinary' influence pro-Israel lobby had on former PM, Jonathan Swan)

Sydney Morning Herald, 10/4/14:

"Less than a fortnight before Mr Rudd's loss in the election, the two men meet in Canberra... and acknowledge Labor has no hope of being returned. Mr Rudd laments on how so few hold power in Australia. '[Mr Rudd] reflects on how few people run the country: the Murdoch media, the heads of Rio and BHP, probably the heads of the big banks, and 'that mob', by which he means the hard-line... pro-Israel lobby in Melbourne.' Mr Carr calls it Mr Rudd's Richard II moment: 'Let us sit upon the ground and tell sad stories of the deaths of kings'." (Bob Carr's Diary takes aim at Julia Gillard and Kevin Rudd for mistakes, Tom Allard & Jonathan Swan)

We've Got to Talk About Bob

Is Bob Carr seriously telling us that prior to a certain conversation with Kevin Rudd he had absolutely no idea that Australia's Palestine/Israel policy was up for sale to the highest bidder?

"Former foreign minister Bob Carr has suggested [in his forthcoming book, Bob Carr: Diary of a Foreign Minister] Julia Gillard's dogged insistence on supporting Israel in a controversial United Nations vote was because Australian foreign policy had been 'subcontracted' to Jewish donors... 'How much of this is about money, I asked [Rudd],' Carr writes. 'He said about one-fifth of the money he had raised in the 2007 election campaign had come from the Jewish community.' Carr concludes that 'subcontracting our foreign policy to party donors is what this involves'." (Bob Carr diaries: foreign policy was subcontracted to Jewish donors, Lenore Taylor,, 9/4/14)

Is it seriously possible that this bookish Americanophile has never read Mearsheimer & Walt's seminal work on modern US politics, The Israel Lobby & US Foreign Policy?

What sort of amateur is this guy?

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Deir Yassin As You've Never Heard It Before

Today, of course, is the 66th anniversary of the Deir Yassin massacre, the best known of the Zionist massacres which characterised the campaign of ethnic cleansing carried out by Zionist terror gangs in Palestine in 1948. (For an earlier post on Deir Yassin, you can check out my 9/4/12 post Zionism Red in Tooth & Claw. )

Of course, spinning away the Deir Yassin and other massacres is a favourite pastime with our Zionist friends, the prevailing assumption being that Israelis just don't do massacres. Or if they do, the Palestinians provoked them somehow. Generally just by being there. Or, if all else fails, hell, just blame it on the Bossa Nova with its magic spell, OK?

Now in the case of the Deir Yassin massacre, you'd think that maybe Zionist propagandists would at least base their spin on the words of the leader of the Irgun, the Zionist terrorist gang primarily responsible for perpetrating the massacre, Menachem Begin.

In Begin's memoir, The Revolt: Story of the Irgun, the Irgun is alleged to have encountered fierce resistance by "Arab troops," who "suffered casualties three times as heavy" as the attacking force.

"Yet the hostile propaganda," writes Begin, "disseminated throughout the world, deliberately ignored the fact that the civilian population of Deir Yassin was actually given a warning by us before the battle began. One of our tenders carrying a loud speaker was stationed at the entrance to the village and it exhorted in Arabic all women, children and aged to leave their houses and to take shelter on the slope of a hill. By giving this humane warning our fighters threw away the element of complete surprise, and thus increased their own risk in the ensuing battle. A substantial number of the inhabitants obeyed the warning and they were unhurt. A few did not leave their stone houses - perhaps because of the confusion. The fire of the enemy was murderous - to which the number of our casualties bears eloquent testimony. Our men were compelled to fight for every house; to overcome the enemy they used large numbers of hand-grenades. And the civilians who had disregarded our warnings, suffered inevitable casualties." (pp 164-65)

There's the script, OK? Now is it really too much to expect Begin's brats to stick to it, do you think?

Well, apparently, yes it is! It seems Begin didn't know shit about what really went on in the "battle" for Deir Yassin, that is if you're to believe David Meir-Levi. You see:

"A contingent of Iraqi troops had entered Deir Yassin on March 13, 1948... So on April 9, 1948, a contingent of the Irgun... entered the village. However the Iraqis disguised themselves as women - it is easy to hide weapons beneath the flowing robes of the burqa* - and had hidden themselves among women and children in the village. So, when the Irgun fighters entered, they encountered fire from 'women'! When the Irgun fighters fired back, they killed innocent women because the Iraqis were dressed like women and hiding behind them." (Big Lies: Demolishing the Myths of the Propaganda War Against Israel, 2005,

Now that little propaganda primer, published by the David Horowitz Freedom Centre and Students for Academic Freedom, was written for Zionist students on US campuses to aid and abet their eternal struggle for Strewth, Injustice and the Israeli way. As that eminence grise of Zionist campus activism, David Horowitz, has written in its Introduction:

"David Meir-Levi has written a text that restores the memory of the facts that lie at the very heart of the conflict in the Middle East."

What a pity Begin wasn't around to read Big Lies while writing his memoir. Would it not have jogged his memory?

[*I'm not even going there, except to say that the short answer is 'no'.]

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

The Redundancy of Homework 1

Will the likes of Peter Hartcher, the Sydney Morning Herald's international editor, still be recycling the lie that Asad gassed his own people a year from now? My guess is yes:

"Obama said besieged Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad must not cross the 'red line' of using chemical weapons against his own people. But he did, of course." (Hedging bets in Asia for Australia, 8/4/14)

From now on, I'll be keeping tabs on msm pundits such as Hartcher who are simply too lazy to do their homework or have an axe to grind or both in a series called The Redundancy of Homework. Watch this space.

If you haven't already done so, please read my previous post and you'll see what I mean.

About That Gas Attack in Syria...

Don't you just love it when one of the world's top investigative reporters blows the official story of last August's 'Syrian government' gas attack clear out of the water, but NO Australian corporate media outlet, despite having dined out on it for months afterwards, bothers to report on his findings?

Here's an edited excerpt from's Justin Raimondo's column on Seymour Hersh's report, The Red Line & the Rat Line, in the London Review of Books (6/4/14), which reveals that the gas attack which almost triggered a full-scale US military operation against the Asad regime was a false flag incident engineered by the Turks:

"Now we learn from Hersh, citing senior intelligence officials, that even as US officials were proclaiming that only the Syrian government had the capability to deploy chemical weapons, and specifically sarin,Western intelligence agencies and the Pentagon knew better... [T]he Russians secured samples days after the late August incident, concluding that the sarin wasn't military grade and the means of delivery appeared makeshift.

"Hersh takes the story further, relating that the Russians sent the samples to the British, who confirmed their analysis. At which point the joint chiefs led by anti-interventionist Gen. Jack Dempsey... went to the President 'with a more serious worry: that the attack sought by the White House would be an unjustified act of aggression. It was the joint chiefs,' reports Hersh, citing former intelligence officials, 'who led Obama to change course.' In a laugh-out-loud moment, Hersh writes: 'The official White House explanation for the turnabout - the story the presscorp told - was that the president... suddenly decided to seek approval from a bitterly divided Congress with which he'd been in conflict for years. The former Defence Department official told me that the White House provided a different explanation to members of the civilian leadership of the Pentagon: the bombing had been called off because there was intelligence 'that the Middle East would go up in smoke' if it was carried out.'

"So they lied to everyone, perhaps even to themselves. Because neither of these explanations even approaches the truth - which is that the President, even after being confronted with evidence he'd been hoaxed, decided to try to rope everyone into the lie. Rather than call the whole thing off, the White House did a good imitation of observing the democratic process - all the while asserting in testimony before Congress that the Assad regime had 'gassed their own people' and that the rebels were the victims rather than the perpetrators. Indeed, they assert the same nonsense even to this day, as indicated by the terse denials included in Hersh's piece. Yet they were (and are) lying through their teeth, reports Hersh, without coming right out and saying so. Citing a former intelligence official, he says US intelligence analysts suspected the Turks, and goes on to relate how: 'As intercepts and other data related to the 21 August attacks were gathered, the intelligence community saw evidence to support its suspicions. 'We now know it was a covert action planned by Erdogan's people to push Obama over the red line,' the former intelligence official said. 'They had to escalate to a gas attack in or near Damascus when the UN inspectors' - who arrived in Damascus on 18 August to investigate the earlier use of gas - 'were there. The deal was to do something spectacular. Our senior military officers have been told by the DIA and other intelligence assets that the sarin was supplied through Turkey - that it could only have gotten there with Turkish support. The Turks also provided the training in producing the sarin and handling it.'

"It also turns out that the international Surveillance State has its uses, because, according to Hersh's source, we 'intercepted conversations in the immediate aftermath of the attack. Principal evidence came from the Turkish post-attack joy and backslapping in numerous intercepts. Operations are always so super-secret in the planning but that all flies out the window when it comes to crowing afterwards. There is no greater vulnerability than in the perpetrators claiming credit for success.' Erdogan's problems in Syria would soon be over: 'Off goes the gas and Obama will say red line and America is going to attack Syria, or at least that was the idea. But it did not work out that way'." (Who was behind the Syrian 'false flag' attack? 6/4/14)

The above is merely an extract. You can read the rest of Raimondo's report at, or Hersh's original at And while you're at it, check out Did Obama's 'rebels' in Syria kidnap children from Latakia and murder them in Ghouta chemical attack to justify US bombing of Syria?, 27/3/14. Citizen journalism at its best. Finally, my own earlier post, Something Dangerous (11/9/13), long ago cast doubt on the official version.

Monday, April 7, 2014

A Question for Reza Aslan

Another speaker on matters Middle Eastern slated for the Sydney Writers Festival next month is the Iranian-American scholar of religion, Reza Aslan.

Judging by the video clips I've seen, if Aslan broaches the subject of Palestine/Israel, he's probably going to be telling us that the two-state solution is dead and that we're heading for a de facto binational state (from the River to the Sea), based either on South-African style apartheid, where a Jewish minority rules over a disenfranchised Palestinian majority, or something more accommodating of the interests of both groups.

So far so good, analytically speaking at any rate.

Where I part company with Aslan is in relation to what he calls the "sacrifices" both sides will have to make were the second of the above two scenarios to prevail.

While he thinks it "sad" that Israeli Jews will have to give up their "dream" of a Jewish majority state, the Palestinians, he says, will have to give up their "impossible notion of the right of return."

IOW, the Israeli sacrifice involves merely giving up a very bad idea, while the Palestinian sacrifice involves giving up a very good idea (so good in fact that it's enshrined in Article 13 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights), namely the right of people to leave and return to their own country.

Not to mention the fact that giving up that very good idea would condemn millions of living, breathing Palestinians to a permanent exile.

Does Aslan seriously believe this, or is it that he just hasn't thought this one through?

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Archaeology with Attitude

If Japan has 'scientific whaling', Israel has... archaeology:

"Israel has approved a controversial archaeology project in annexed east Jerusalem, the interior ministry said Friday... The ministry 'heard objections' from the Palestinians and from residents to build a visitor centre just outside Jerusalem's Old City walls in the Arab neighbourhood of Silwan, a statement said. However it approved the project on the grounds that it 'will show important archaeological discoveries to the public.'... It would be managed by Elad, a hardline settler organisation which seeks to increase Jewish settlement in East Jerusalem and which runs the nearby City of David archaeological site." (Israel OKs controversial E. Jerusalem archaeology project,, 4/4/14)

Hm... important archaeological discoveries...

Will this centre, I wonder, contain Benjamin Netanyahu's 2,700-year old seal which, so he says, has 'his' name on it and to which he referred in his 2011 speech to the UNGA? (See my 23/3/14 post Pathetic Delusions, Dangerous Consequences.)

Or maybe the 3,700-year old ring which has the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies' Vic Alhadeff's name on it?

Or maybe the 4,700-year old bone with the letters PW carved on it, which can only stand for the Executive Council of Australian Jewry's Peter Wertheim?

Or maybe the 5,700-year old rock with the words 'Colin Rubenstein was here' scratched into it, indicating the Australia/Israel and Jewish Affairs Council's leader's lineal descent to a prehistoric ancestor of the same name?

Saturday, April 5, 2014

On 'Liberal Zionists' & Bad Teddy Bears

It looks like one of the speakers at next month's Sydney Writers Festival will be Israel's Ari Shavit, author of My Promised Land, and part subject of my 17/3/14 post Hello, Geoffrey?

Shavit has been described as a 'liberal Zionist', that is, one who opposes (how?) the occupation of the Palestinian territories but baulks at the implementation of UN Resolution 194, which calls for the return of Palestinian refugees ethnically cleansed by Zionist forces in 1948, because it would transform Israel's current Jewish majority into a minority, effectively paving the way for a binational, one-state solution to the Palestine/Israel problem.

What follows is as good an account of the psychology of the 'liberal Zionist' as I've seen in a while. It comes from the comment thread to M.J. Rosenberg's conundrum, by Lawrence Davidson (, 3/4/14):

"MJ Rosenberg and Shavit and other 'liberal Zionists' are not likely to give up their fears - roughly, I guess, either fear of another holocaust somewhere outside Israel if Israel does not remain Jewish-dominated or fear that the loss of such an Israel would be in-and-of-itself another holocaust.

"These fears make them proof against the ethical demands that normal people recognize - including most normal Jews These fears also seem to cloud their thinking, preventing them from thinking any thought that would unseat the fears. They don't see this, they cannot, for their fears are like the Teddy Bears that little kids seem to carry with them wherever they go.

"Don't get me wrong - I love little kids and think they are ever so cute, including their Teddy Bear need. I remember turning around after driving the first hour of a four-hour trip to go home to get my 3-year-old son's special blanket that we'd somehow left at home. Those blankets and Teddy Bears are really important for mental health. Everyone's.

"But MJR and Shavit are getting a bit old for dragging their particular dirty, bedraggled Teddy Bear around with them for very much longer.

"I think they will grow old and die clutching that horrible, destructive Teddy Bear, unless, perhaps, their children or grandchildren turn their backs on Israel (or on Zionism, not the same thing) and do so in a way which might teach their elders that the damage done by Zionism-in-practice was far worse than any benefit gained by it. After all, losing your kids due to crimes you approved of (and perhaps participated in) would be a heavy price to pay. Worse than losing a Teddy Bear." (pabelmont)

Friday, April 4, 2014

A Whole Lotta Smotin' Goin' On?

That last post about Vic Alhadeff and the Prophet Gershwin-defying Zionist narrative of Jewish history really got me thinking.

Vic was obviously in fine form with his little joke about Moses and the first ever strike.

So I'm wondering: What with the horny-handed workers (or in Craig Thomson's case, just plain horny) cacking themselves over it, did he perhaps get a little carried away, and move on to the next enthralling chapter of the narrative, namely the Conquest of Canaan?

If so, did any of the assembly stop and think, as his laugh-a-minute retelling of all that divinely-commanded, genocidal smoting of hip and thigh that was supposed to have taken place back then was in full swing, that this was NSW's Community Relations Commissioner speaking?

Not that they needed too, of course.

As the Prophet Gershwin, bless him, reminds us: The things that you're liable/ To read in the Bible/ It ain't necessarily so:

"After 40 years of wandering, the Children of Israel arrived in Canaan and took it by storm. Following the divine command, they annihilated most of the local population and forced the remainder to serve them as hewers of wood and drawers of water... This ruthless myth of settlement, [however,] described in the Book of Joshua in colorful detail as one of the earliest genocides, never actually happened. The famous conquest of Canaan was the next myth to fall apart in the skirmishes of the new archaeology." (The Invention of the Jewish People, Shlomo Sand, 2009, p 119)

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Stuff Zionists Say

In a letter to the Sydney Morning Herald last year, Vic Alhadeff declared (with a straight face):

"What reputable Israeli leaders do is rely on the Bible to justify their 4,000-year connection to the land." (See my 31/5/13 post The things that you're liable to read into the Bible...)

Which is essentially what he's trying to do here:

"Unionists and Jewish leaders will be gathering in Sydney's Great Synagogue tonight for a Passover dinner co-hosted by the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies and Unions NSW. 'Moses was the first unionist,' Board of Deputies chief executive Vic Alhadeff observed to Strewth. 'He told the Jewish slaves in Egypt to down tools and go home. They did!'" (Original union heavy, Strewth, The Australian, 2/4/14)

Hilarious. Not.

History. Not.

The problem is he ignores the warning of the Prophet Gershwin that "The things that you're liable/ To read in the Bible/ It ain't necessarily so":

"In the thirteenth century BCE, the purported time of the Exodus, Canaan was ruled by the still-powerful pharaohs. This means that Moses led the freed slaves out of Egypt... to Egypt? According to the biblical narrative, the people he led through the wilderness for 40 years included 600,000 warriors; they would have been traveling with their wives and children, implying a party of around 3 million in total. Aside from the fact that it was utterly impossible for a population of such size to wander through the desert for so long, an event of such magnitude should have left some epigraphic or archaeological traces. The ancient Egyptians kept meticulous records of every event, and there is a great deal of documentation about the kingdom's political and military life. There are even documents about incursions of nomadic groups into the realm. Yet there is not a single mention of any 'Children of Israel' who lived in Egypt, or rebelled against it, or emigrated from it at any time." (The Invention of the Jewish People, Shlomo Sand, 2009, pp 118-19)

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Q&A Flakes

Tim Wilson, Human Rights Commissioner:

"My view is that whenever Australia is siding up with only China and Iran when we are voting on things [at the UN], it is probably not a good sign."

Hello? This effusion hardly reflects the reality of our voting pattern in the UN General Assembly. Reality would dictate something more along these lines:

'My view is that whenever Australia is siding up with only the United States and Israel when we are voting on things, it is most definitely not a good sign.'

But then, reality (or even human rights) is not really Wilson's thing. Certainly not since he was rambammed - see my 23/2/14 post I Want My Money Back.

Mona Eltahawy, Egyptian activist and commentator:

- Well, you're talking to someone who got arrested for spray-painting over a racist and bigoted ad in the New York subway and I'm going to stand trial very soon in New York for this...

TJ: What did it say? Are you allowed to tell us?

- I can tell you because it - I mean it's outrageous. It said: 'In the war between the civilised man and the savage, always choose the civilised man. Support Israel. Defeat Jihad.' And I thought: are you fucking kidding me? In my subway? How can you put this up?

I don't get it. I always thought Eltahawy had the hots for Israel.

After all, she too was rambammed; wrote for the Jerusalem Post; declared that "Israel was the opium of the Arabs"; and (with exquisite timing, after Israel had just bombed the crap out of Gaza in 2008-09) described herself as a "self-hating Arab," pontificating that "the real challenge when it comes to the Middle East [conflict] is to sit on the fence."

But now she's not only off the fence, she's running around defacing pro-Israel posters! From Self-hating Arab to Existential Threat in 5 seconds flat! WTF?

[For more on Mona, see my 31/1/11 post Homely Mona.]

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Only If You're a Good Doggie...

Both of the majors are hooked on Jewish political donations designed to ensure bipartisan support for Israel.

Note here, for example, how the threat of a withdrawal of same is used to squeeze the Libs on 18C:

"Peter Wertheim, executive director of the Executive Council of Australian Jewry, said... [the government's proposal to remove 'offend, insult and humiliate' and broaden the exemptions in the Racial Discrimination Act] could affect donations to the Coalition..." (Jewish donations to Liberal party could be hit by race act changes, Gabrielle Chan,, 31/3/14)

To see the same kind of squeeze applied to Labor, simply click on the label below and read my 22/6/10 post The Best Israel Policy Money Can Buy.

Is it any wonder that Australia's foreign policy position on the Palestine/Israel issue is hopelessly skewed in favour of Israel and against the most elementary justice for Palestine?

I've already reported on how Abbott and Bishop have introduced a new level of servility when it comes to serving Israeli interests - see my posts Just How Bright is Julie Bishop? (28/1/14) and What Would Santa Say? (27/9/13). (Just click on the 'Julie Bishop' label below.)

As for Labor, it's really no different. Here's part of what opposition leader (and protege of the late Richard Pratt), Bill Shorten, had to say to the Zionist Federation of Australia in the context of the debate over 18C:

"Shorten offered this formulation to the Zionist Federation on the vexed issue of settlements on Sunday: 'We do acknowledge that some settlement activity in the West Bank is illegal under Israeli law..." (Jewish community must speak out on race act changes, says Shorten, Katherine Murphy,, 30/3/14)

Some settlements are illegal under Israeli law?!

This is almost a mirror image of Bishop's What's international law got to do with it? position on Israeli settlements.

It's really very simple: All Israeli settlements are illegal under the only law that matters - international law. End of story.