Tuesday, September 24, 2013
1. Academic Dingbat of the Year:
Meet Tel Aviv University's goofy Orly Lubin, ultra-feminzt, Marxist, anti-Israel faculty member in "Gender Studies":
To illustrate just how bad the situation of women in Israel is, Lubin cites the example of driving. "I tell my women students that we were all taught to be bad drivers. If a woman is a good driver, like I am, then people say that she drives like a man. Whenever someone delays me on the road, it's always a woman, because we were taught to be bad drivers. Women have no experience driving because a man won't let them drive if he has to sit next to her in the car."
According to your new book, femininity is a stereotype. How do you define your own femininity?
"First of all, it's very intellectual. I've never been concerned with the question of whether my particular femininity is worthy and if it meets the criteria for worthy femininity, because I'm not from the feminist police and this has never bothered me. I don't know what's feminine and what's not feminine, because it's a function of so many things - of fashion, of norms, of a Hollywood decision. I'm interested in it, but in a very intellectual way."
Is being well-dressed feminine?
"I certainly am. I buy clothes only in New York because I don't have time anywhere else and I wear clothes by an American designer named Eileen Fisher who makes what are called `Women's Sizes.' It costs a fortune because she has a certain reputation. Her clothes fit me well."
How do you see yourself?
"I'm always lamenting the fact that I have to be on a diet. Even right now when I'm chewing on a brownie at a cafe, I'm lamenting that fact."
2. Time to Junk "Oslo":
Israel Should Annul the Oslo Accords
By DANNY DANON
JERUSALEM — THIS month marks 20 years since the signing of the first of the Oslo Accords between the State of Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization. Two decades after Yitzhak Rabin and Yasir Arafat stood on the White House lawn with President Bill Clinton, Israelis and Palestinians are again in the midst of the umpteenth round of negotiations.
Despite these efforts, true peace seems as distant as it did before the secret talks in Oslo were revealed to the world. The government of Israel must admit that we made a mistake and declare that the Oslo process has failed.
Only by officially annulling the Oslo Accords will we have the opportunity to rethink the existing paradigm and hopefully lay the foundations for a more realistic modus vivendi between the Jews and Arabs of this region.
Despite attempts to rewrite recent history by fringe elements, the failure of the Oslo framework cannot be attributed to a lack of will and persistence by Israel. What didn't we try? We attempted direct negotiations, third-party mediators, public conferences and back-channel talks. We staged withdrawals and unilateral disengagements, established joint Israeli-Palestinian military patrols in Gaza and deployed American-trained security forces in the West Bank. None of this worked.
The P.L.O., and later the Palestinian Authority, never truly accepted that Israel, as the national state and homeland of the Jewish people, was here to stay. No amount of impressive ceremonies, cosmetic changes to the P.L.O. charter and Palestinian doublespeak to Western media outlets about their commitment to peace was able to change this grim fact.
To understand the mind-boggling scope of Oslo's failure, it is best to look at the statistics. According to the organization B'Tselem, during the first Palestinian intifada in 1987, six years before Mr. Rabin's attempt to recast the archterrorist Yasir Arafat as a peacemaker, 160 Israelis were murdered in Palestinian terror attacks. In the mid- to late-1990s, as successive Israeli governments negotiated with the Palestinians, and Mr. Arafat and his cronies repeatedly swore they were doing their utmost to end terrorism, 240 Israelis were brutally killed as suicide bombs and other heinous terrorist acts targeting unarmed civilians were unleashed in every corner of our nation.
Things did not get better after Prime Minister Ehud Barak made the Palestinians an offer in 2000 that, judging by his landslide defeat in the election a few months later, was way beyond what most Israelis supported. Between then and September 2010, 1,083 Israelis were murdered by Palestinian terrorists.
The Oslo process did not bring peace; it brought increased bloodshed. We must end this farce by announcing the immediate suspension of the accords.
Little impact would be felt by average Israelis and Palestinians. Those who would suffer most would be full-time negotiators like Martin S. Indyk and Saeb Erekat, who would find themselves out of a job after 20 years of gainful employment in the peace process industry.
What should replace Oslo's false promise? We should implement what I have called a "three-state solution." In the future, the final status of the Palestinians will be determined in a regional agreement involving Jordan and Egypt, when the latter has been restabilized. All the region's states must participate in the process of creating a long-term solution for the Palestinian problem.
In the short term, the Palestinians will continue to have autonomy over their civilian lives while Israel remains in charge of security throughout Judea and Samaria, commonly referred to as the West Bank. Following an initial period, the Arab residents of Judea and Samaria could continue to develop their society as part of an agreement involving Israel and Jordan. Similarly, Gaza residents could work with Israel and Egypt to create a society that granted them full civil authority over their lives in a manner that was acceptable to all sides.
Most veterans of the peace process will mock this proposal, protesting that there is no way it would be accepted by the Palestinians. Their argument may seem convincing today, but as I often remind my critics, our region is unpredictable. Had you told any Middle East expert five years ago that two successive Egyptian presidents would be deposed and Bashar al-Assad's regime would be in the midst of a bloody civil war, you, too, would have been mocked. Things change. We can make them change.
I am aware that even if the Palestinians accepted this plan, we would still have to deal with a fundamentalist Hamas regime in Gaza and continuing instability in Egypt. No plan for Israeli-Arab peace can be fully implemented until these issues are resolved.
In the short term, Israel's only option is to manage this conflict by refusing to compromise when it comes to the security of Israeli citizens. At the same time, our government should take all steps possible to improve the economic well-being of the Palestinians.
The dissolution of the Oslo Accords would serve as the official act validating what we already know — that this failed framework is totally irrelevant in 2013. Once the Palestinians were ready to sit down and seriously discuss how our two peoples, through this new paradigm, could live side by side in peace and prosperity, they would find willing partners across the political spectrum in Israel.
It may not be the utopian peace promised to all of us on that sunny day in September 1993, but in the harsh realities of the Middle East, this may be the best we can hope for and the sole realistic chance for our children to grow up in a world less violent than previous generations have had to endure.
Danny Danon is a member of the Knesset and the deputy defense minister of Israel.
3. Nairobi and the Yids: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/172163
4. What Netanyahu buys with his "prisoner releases": http://www.jpost.com/Opinion/Editorials/The-price-of-prisoner-swaps-326799
5. Bill de Blasio and the Jews: http://frontpagemag.com/2013/dgreenfield/bill-de-blasio-and-the-jews/
Friday, September 20, 2013
Erev Succot the Israeli business newspaper Golbes ran an interview with the president of Tel Aviv University, Joseph Klafter. It can be read in Hebrew at http://www.globes.co.il/news/article.aspx?did=1000880110
As part of the interview, Klafter was asked about the totalitarian ideological mindset in certain departments of the uiniversity, where every single faculty member holds exactly the same ideological position. The interviewer did not spell it out but he clearly meant that all faculty members are leftists. Klafter responded that he was unaware of any such departments at Tel Aviv University.
Well, I thought I would help him out. In the political science and history departments at Tel Aviv University, not only are all or virtually all faculty members far leftists, but the bulk of faculty members are communists. Other departments in which non-leftist opition may never be heard at Tel Aviv University include sociology, anthropology, linguistics, gender studies, and philosophy. Non-leftist opinion is nearly as extinct in the TAU law school and school of education. There are other departments where non-leftist ideas are never or almost never voiced.
Here is one wonderful illustration for what passes as academic work at Tel Aviv Universitty these days:
Tel Aviv University - The Adventures of Priscilla Gross (Dept of Law) Queen of the Desert
Aeyal Gross leading the campaign on behalf of transvestites and "transgendered"
(open web page for full story)
Finally, let us note that in other countries, the campaign against the totalitarian campus Left is picking up momentum.
The following story is fascinating, although it could never take place at an Israeli university:
An Unexpected and Important Education Victory in Colorado
Posted By Sara Dogan On September 20, 2013
In a unanimous 8-to-0 vote, the Colorado University regents have passed a resolution to add "political affiliation" to the school's non-discrimination policy, thus protecting students from political harassment by their professors, including punitive retributions for expressing their views in class. Colorado U. is also moving forward with a study, approved by the regents in June, which will evaluate whether professors currently show proper respect for the differing (usually conservative) opinions of their students. This path-breaking resolution was the work of the two courageous regents who sponsored the resolution, Sue Sharkey and Jim Geddes.
The resolution amends Article 10 of the UC "Laws of the Regents" to state, "The University of Colorado does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, disability, creed, religion, sexual orientation, GENDER IDENTITY, GENDER EXPRESSION or veteran status, POLITICAL AFFILIATION, OR POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY in admission and access to, and treatment and employment in, its educational programs and activities."
It goes on to add that, "The university is committed to the principle of non-discrimination and does not tolerate harassment on any basis, including sex, race, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, GENDER IDENTITY, GENDER EXPRESSION or age, POLITICAL AFFILIATION, OR POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY." [Words in capital letters are newly added to the policy].
Speaking on the resolution's impact, Regent Sharkey commented that it "really does send a very good statement about the University of Colorado, and in a very positive way. … We're not going to discriminate based upon a person's political philosophy, political affiliation, gender identity or gender expression."
This critical victory in the fight to protect the academic freedom of students and faculty has been a long time in coming. In the fall of 2003, the David Horowitz Freedom Center launched a campaign in Colorado to promote an Academic Bill of Rights for students to achieve a similar result. The core principles of the bill were adopted in a Joint Resolution of the Colorado legislature but because of the opposition of the teacher unions and the Democratic Party were never enforced.
In the spring of 2004, the reform campaign went national as the Freedom Center's newly created organization, Students for Academic Freedom, was activated on 100 campuses nationwide. Over the next seven years many victories were achieved in educating the general public about the problem of political persecution of conservative students. But equally many defeats were suffered as the powerful teacher unions and their Democratic Party allies went into action and blocked every single reform the Freedom Center was able to put in place. The unions were even able to remove all the regents who voted to adopt the Academic Bill of Rights at Illinois' College of DuPage, and to expunge the principles of intellectual diversity they had put in place as well.
In the summer of 2004, the Students for Academic Freedom campaign approached 88 university presidents, including the president of Colorado University, and asked them to revise their anti-discrimination policies to include political, ideological, and intellectual diversity. Only two of the 88 responded and neither of them was willing to consider the proposal.
Now, nearly 10 years later, two Colorado University regents have persuaded their colleagues, including several Democrats, to achieve that goal. Bravo, Sue Sharkey and Jim Geddes.
"I am thrilled with this result," commented David Horowitz. "I applaud Sue Sharkey and Jim for waging what I am sure was a lonely fight among their fellow Republicans as well as Democrats, to do the right thing and begin to restore an academic environment to our beleaguered university system. I have spoken to thousands of students in almost fifty states and heard their tales of professorial discrimination, harassment and outright intimidation. I have known first-hand the determined opposition to academic freedom of the American Association of University Professors and the American Federation of Teachers, and have felt the sting of their slanders. So I know the kind of backbone it took to get this resolution passed. What they have achieved lifts some of the burden of frustration from my shoulders, and I look forward to other universities adopting this needed reform in the coming months and years."
Monday, September 16, 2013
Sunday, September 15, 2013
The fascist Left in Israel continues its campaign to paint "Im Tirtzu," the ZIonist student group, as a fascist group. One of the leading anti-Israel extremists leading the charge against Im Tirtzu is Moshe ZImmerman, a professor of German history at the Hebrew University.
Now as it turns out, Zimmerman's interest in libel suits did NOT begin with the suit filed by Im Tirtzu against its defamers. Zimmerman has some personal track record when it comes to SLAPP suits against the right of freedom of speech.
I re-post an old posting:
Down Goes Another SLAPP Suit
Zimmerman was suing the paper because the paper had the nerve to report truthfully Zimmerman's comments about settlers and soldiers being "Nazis".
From Steven Plaut
Friday, September 13, 2013
The Legacy of 9-11 Hero Danny Lewin
By Steven Plaut
The Israeli-American hero of September 11, 2001 has remained largely unknown and his role largely unacknowledged. Danny Lewin was an American-Israeli, an internet entrepreneur, and the very first person to be murdered by the Al-Qaeda barbarians on September 11, 2001. He was aboard the American Airlines Flight 11 plane out of Boston headed for Los Angeles when it was hijacked by the terrorists. A veteran of the special forces in the Israeli army, Lewin quickly understood what was going down. He spoke fluent Arabic. He single-handedly attempted to attack and subdue the terrorists. He was stabbed to death on the plane by terrorist Satam al-Suqami, a Saudi law student. He was 31 years old when he was murdered.
A new biography of the hero of 9-11 just hit the book stores and is entitled, "No Better Time: The Brief, Remarkable Life of Danny Lewin, the Genius Who Transformed the Internet." It is written by Molly Knight Raskin.
Lewin grew up in Denver and immigrated to Israel with his family in 1984. He served in the ultra-elite special forces combat unit "Sayeret Matkal," perhaps best known for the operation in Entebbe to release the kidnapped Jews. He attended the Technion in Haifa, where in 1995 he was named the year's Outstanding Student in Computer Engineering. He then worked for IBM in developing high-tech products, later doing graduate work at MIT.
Lewin had been working with MIT Professor F. Thomson Leighton, and the two developed mathematical algorithms for optimizing internet traffic. These became the basis for Akamai Technologies, which the two founded in 1998. Lewin served as the company's chief technology officer and a board member. The company went public in 1999 and its stock market valuation rose rapidly to 345 billion dollars. Lewin was posthumously named one of the most influential high-tech figures in the world.
After his death, the intersection of Main and Vassar Streets in Cambridge, Massachusetts, was renamed Danny Lewin Square in his honor.
His life captures everything positive about the American-Israeli collaboration in education, high-technology, and military strategy. He also epitomizes the world struggle against barbarism.
The Stupidest thing Ever to Emerge from Jerusalem
The Israeli Supreme Court is never one to procrastinate when it comes to hopping aboard the stupidest bandwagons of the political correctness movement.
Yesterday Supreme Court justices ruled that imprisoned "transgendered" she-males are deserving of special compassion and reductions in their prison terms because they are such unfortunate and suffering souls.
The case involved a woman who claims she lives as a man and would like to do sex-change surgery. She - or if you read Haaretz, this person who is everywhere referred to as "he" - has already had her hooters surgically removed. She is doing jail time because of her participation in a gas station stickup. She was sentenced to 15 months in a women's prison plus a fine, but yesterday the Supreme Court reduced her prison term to 10 months. How come? The judges ruled that life is really tough inside prison for the "transgendered" and so she deserves special consideration. Think I made this up? See http://www.haaretz.com/news/national/.premium-1.546826. A similar report in leftist YNET that also refers to her as "he" can be seen here: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4429353,00.html .
What is even more amazing is the list of the judges who signed on to this judicial buffoonery. They included the supposedly conservative and religious justice Noam Solberg. He was joined by the Arab judge Salim Joubran and the pseudo-conservative judge Neal Hendel. Their role is significant because these two were among the Supreme Court judges who refused to defend freedom of speech in the Gordon-Plaut "libel" suit and allowed the judgment in favor of pro-terrorist Neve Gordon to stand. They ruled that criticizing the criminal political activities of Gordon in interfering with IDF anti-terror operations is indeed libel, even though it is factually correct and Gordon was breaking the law. As can be seen from the ruling on behalf of the she-male, they are not only anti-democratic but are also inconceivably and indescribably goofy.
Until now I thought that the Knesset initiative to ban fashion advertisements that show skinny models was the very stupidest thing ever to emerge from Jerusalem, but here I stand corrected.
In any case, I would not ordinarily add these thoughts and mental associations, but heck I figure it is just a few hours until Yom Kippur and so I will be able to atone for this while it is still fresh. You see, the imprisoned she-male who gets released early triggered some mental associations for me regarding an episode of the television show "Friends." It is where the "Joey" character is supposed to go for an audition to get the part for a movie in which he needs to do a nude scene, and the nude scene requires a character who is in possession of a foreskin. So the other "friends" decide to construct one for Joey out of silly putty. All goes well until the silly putty slips off in the middle of the audition.
Well, Israel's Supreme Court justices just had their silly putty slip off of their thinking apparatuses in this decision. And all day long I have been agonizing over the following question: When a female "transgendered" thing decides to become a "male" through surgery, does she decide to have one constructed for her that includes a foreskin? I just can't get this out of my mind!
Ok, I confess, I have a secret agenda here. Ordinarily in the late hours of Yom Kippur our minds tend to wander off and we think about food. But after reading this I am pretty sure any mind wandering you will experience THIS Kippur will involve the above image of the silly putty slipping off and you will not think about food at all!
Hatima Tova to all!
Thursday, September 12, 2013
The Isracampus Challenge for Yariv Oppenheimer from "Peace Now"
Yariv Oppenheimer is the leader of "Peace Now." He has been leading a well-oiled media war against what he calls "Judicial Terrorism," meaning defamation suits filed against leading public figures to harass and silence them. Oppenheimer himself was successfully sued for libel by Arie King and ordered to pay 6500 NIS in damages. Together with his close cronies at "Haaretz," Oppenheimer and the Far Left are sudden all upset by what they claim are politically motivated SLAPP suits filed against the Left. Oppenheimer denounces these in a column in Maariv, in which he claims that such suits endanger freedom of speech and democracy.
This is all very nice, and we at Isracampus are always happy to hear Oppenheimer speak out for a change in favor of freedom of speech. But as part of his efforts at suppressing SLAPP suit harassments and what he dubs "judicial terror," perhaps Oppenheimer should issue a condemnation of the behavior of his buddy Amiram Goldblum, one of the founders of "Peace Now," due to the large number of frivolous anti-democratic harassment SLAPP suits that Goldblum has filed against those who dare to criticize Goldblum's own political behavior and the ideology of the Far Left. We would also like to hear Oppenheimer say a few words about the role of Tsali Reshef, another leader in "Peace Now," in collaborating with Goldblum in this SLAPP suit harassment and in Goldblum's campaign against democracy and freedom of speech. Or what Oppenheimer calls judicial terror.
(In the last posting from a few days ago I had a senior moment and sent it out with the email addresses showing. Apologies for my senility!)
USA Today describes the administration's strategy: "A second senior official, who has seen the most recent planning, offered this metaphor to describe such a strike: If Assad is eating Cheerios, we're going to take away his spoon and give him a fork. Will that degrade his ability to eat Cheerios? Yes. Will it deter him? Maybe. But he'll still be able to eat Cheerios."
Monday, September 09, 2013
Yet more dual justice in Israel's politicized judicial system
On January 2, 2009 in the middle of Israel's "Cast Lead" military operation against entrenched terrorists in Gaza, a group of Israeli far leftists held a disruptive protest of solidarity with the terrorists, opposing Israel's military operation there. It took place near the Sdeh Dov regional airport (a small airport near Tel Aviv, but from which some Israeli Air Force planes operate). The protesters wore masks and had make-pretend blood spilled on their clothes. They called their protest a "Die In." None of the protesters was known to have participated in any Die In protests against the thousands of Hamas rockets fired from Gaza into Israel.
The protesters handed out fliers accusing Israeli soldiers of committing atrocities. At one point the protesters lay down on the road to block entrance into the air force section of the airfield, disrupting military traffic. The protesters prevented pilots from entering the base. The protesters were repeatedly ordered by the police and army to desist and move off of the road, but refused. Sixteen of the protesters were arrested and were indicted for disturbing the peace, entering a military area without permission, disrupting traffic, and creating a public nuisance. The police did not use Tasers against the leftist protesters, as they tend to do when arresting "settler" protesters.
The 16 were indicted and tried before Judge Hadassah Naor in Tel Aviv court. A few days ago the verdict was announced. The anti-Israel protesters were all acquitted. Protected speech, you see. You can see the verdict in Hebrew here http://www.nevo.co.il/psika_word/shalom/SH-09-1025-259.doc
In 1993-5, shortly after the atrocious "Oslo Accord" was announced, Moshe Feiglin organized street protests against the "deal." Feiglin is today a Knesset Member from the Likud, but back then was head of a grassroots protest movement calling itself "Zo Artseinu." Like "Im Tirtzu" today, the Fascist Left in Israel denounced Zo Artseinu as a fascist organization. In one of their protests in 1995, the Zo Artseinu protesters blocked a traffic intersection, a civilian intersection, not one on which military traffic rode. Feiglin was arrested and indicted. Not for creating a public nuisance, but for sedition. Expressing opposition to Oslo in a street intersection was deemed sedition. Two others were indicted with him for the same thing, although charges were dropped against Benny Elon when he was elected to the Knesset. Feiglin was convicted in 1997 and sentenced to six months community service. No it was not the same judge as in the above case but it was the same court. For years Feiglin's "criminal conviction" was used by Ariel Sharon and Bibi Netanyahu to prevent him from running in Likud primaries.
Feiglin has also been repeatedly arrested for the crime of moving his lips in quiet prayer while visiting the Temple Mount.
The conclusion from the above could not be more clear. Leftist traitors in Israel enjoy unlimited freedom of speech, which includes their right to sabotage the operations of an air force base. and otherwise break the law. Anti-Left protesters in Israel do not enjoy freedom of speech at all. When they exercise freedom of speech, they are guilty of sedition. And of course also of murdering Yitzhak Rabin.
Sunday, September 08, 2013
Another Judicial Victory for the Israeli Fascist Left
For years we have been relaying reports about the assault against freedom of speech by Israel's anti-democratic Left. We have also been reporting on the many incidents in which the Israeli judicial system operates out of political bias to suppress freedom of speech. In Israel a dual justice system is allowed to operate - one for leftists and the other for everyone else. But I doubt that any of those previous reports could have prepared anyone for the perfidious ruling by Judge Raphael Yaakobi in Jerusalem court this past week. Not only did Yaakobi defend the naked defamation of a Zionist student group by far-leftist anti-democratic radicals. The judge went beyond that and for all intents and purposes proclaimed Zionism a form of fascism.
The case in question involves a libel suit filed by the IM TIRTZU Zionist student organization in Israel against a gaggle of far-leftists who set up a facebook page, in which the leftists wrote that Im Tirtzu is a fascist and Nazi-like organization. When the case came to court, the leftists claimed that what they had written was factually correct and dragged in to court as their star witness the hardcore anti-Israel communist professor Zeev Sternhell. Sternhell is a leftwing fascist who opposes freedom of speech (see http://isracampus.org.il/third%20level%20pages/HebrewU%20-%20Zeev%20Sternhell%20-%20defends%20Leftist%20McCarthyists.htm ). He also has a long history of calling for the suppression of Israeli sovereignty (see http://isracampus.org.il/third%20level%20pages/HebrewU%20-%20Zeev%20Sternhell%20-%20Calls%20to%20Suppress%20Israeli%20Sovereignty.htm). Sternhell is so anti-Israel that he was granted the Israel prize (see http://isracampus.org.il/third%20level%20pages/Editorial%20-%20Shaul%20Sadka%20-%20Sternhell%20Israel%20Prize.htm). He is best known for proclaiming that the children of Jewish settlers are Hitler Youth. In court Sternhell claimed that yes of course Im Tirtzu really IS a fascist and Nazi-like organization.
The judge tossed out the libel claim by Im Tirtzu. But he did NOT toss it out while posturing as some sort of free-speech absolutist, one who thinks the courts should NEVER issue judgments against libel. Rather, the politicized judge tossed out the suit because he says that yes Im Tirtzu is a fascist organization. His evidence? Leftwing fascist anti-democratic communist fanatic Zeev Sternhell said so in court! So did a few other far leftist "witnesses."
Now lest anyone mistakenly believe that Israeli courts believe in free speech, let us remind everyone of the court judgment against moi for claiming that the illegal infiltration of Ramallah by Neve Gordon, where he served as human shield for murderers and interfered illegally with Israeli military anti-terror operations while publicly embracing Arafat, made Gordon a judenrat-wannabe. The court, including the Supreme Court, ruled that one cannot use Holocaust era rhetoric in political discourse in Israel, as opposed to all democracies on the planet, and found against me. But when leftwing radicals call Im Tirtzu fascist, a term also from the Holocaust era, this is suddenly protected speech. So is Sternhell's calling settler children Hitler Youth.
In reality, Im Tirtzu is simply a non-partisan Zionist organization, and its activities include things like holding campus protests against pro-Hamas Arab student rallies or picketing the New Israel Fund and its leaders. Since it is simply a Zionist organization, this judge's proclamation that it is a "fascist" group is equivalent to a proclamation that this judge regards Zionism as a form a fascism.
The full story about the court case is here in English (I paste it below): http://www.haaretz.com/news/national/.premium-1.545657
And so one more nail is hammered into what is left of the coffin of freedom of speech in Israel. And once again it is the work of an anti-democratic judge with a selective sense of which freedom of speech deserves protection (that of leftists only!).
This was not the first outrageous court ruling by Judge Raphael Yaakobi. In a previous verdict he ruled that the state of Israel was legally responsible for the death and injury of Arabs involved in firefights with Jews, arguing that Israel inadequately protected the Arabs. See this: http://en.idi.org.il/analysis/terrorism-and-democracy/issue-no-2/damages-for-failure-to-protect-civilians-in-occupied-territories-from-vigilante-reprisals . Earlier this year he let an accused terrorist go scot free after he and his accomplice were arrested on arson and terror charges and his accomplice pled guilty. See http://megafon-news.co.il/asys/archives/133549. Last year after a street brawl involving some Jewish and Arab youths in Jerusalem's Zion Square, the judge sent a Jewish teenager girl to house arrest before trial. See http://www.inn.co.il/News/News.aspx/243238 . The girl claimed she had earlier been raped by one of the Arabs. When two Arabs attempted to lynch a religious Jew, the judge refused to watch the security tape of the event and set one of the lynchers free. See http://www.inn.co.il/News/News.aspx/212172.
Do not hold your breath for the judge to be impeached. The Netanyahu-chosen Minister of Law these days is Tzipi Livni and she no doubt approves of the verdict. Oh, and since anti-democratic judges in Israel are calling for the criminalization of criticism of court decisions, if you do not hear from me for a few years after this posting, please bake me a cake with a file inside.
Here is the full Haaretz story
Rejecting bulk of libel suit, court rules Im Tirtzu movement can be likened to Fascism
Extra-parliamentary Zionist movement sued a number of left-wing activists who described it a fascist movement in a Facebook page, demanding compensation of NIS 2.6 million.
By Nir Hasson | Sep. 7, 2013 | 9:58 PM | 3
A Jerusalem district court judge rejected the majority of the claims made by the extra-parliamentary Zionist movement Im Tirtzu, voiding null the bulk of charges it filed against five left-wing activists who described it a fascist movement in a Facebook page.
While clearing four of the five defendants (one of whom works at Haaretz) of all charges, the judge ruled one of the Facebook posts in question did constitue slander. Full responsibility for the post, which implied Im Tirtzu concurs with Nazi race theory, was claimed by one of the defendants.
The ruling stated one cannot interpret the phrase 'Im Tirtzu is a Fascist movement' – (a paraphrase of the activists' Facebook page title) as meaning a full correlation exists between the plaintiff and the Fascist movement in its entirety, but, rather, implies certain equivalents exist, and no more.
During the trial, various expert witnesses were called upon by the defense. These included Prof. Zeev Sternhell, who claimed several similarities exist between Im Tirtzu and the Fascist movement in its infancy, Hebrew language expert Rubik Rosenthal, who spoke about the usage of the term 'Fascist' in current-day Israeli discourse, and religions scholar Tomer Persico, who testified about a public talk in which he participated, where Im Tirtzu's founder Ronen Shoval admitted to drawing inspiration and ideas from thinkers such as Johann Gottlieb Fichte, the German romanticism ideologue regarded as among the precursors of European fascism.
In his final statement, Judge Raphael Yaakobi criticized Im Tirtzu's choice to file charges, opining that in order to ensure a healthy exchange of ideas, it is preferable to allow discourse between embittered political rivals to proceed with the ''least possible restrictions or sanctions''.
Im Tirtzu filed charges against the five some three years ago, demanding compensation of NIS 2.6 million. The movement styles itself as an "extra-parliamentary movement that works to strengthen and advance the values of Zionism in Israel."
Saying it means to appeal in Israel's supreme court, Im Tirtzu issued a response to the court's decision through lawyer Nadav Haetzni:
"Firstly, one must note that one of the defendants was convicted of defamation due to serious incitement that accuses Im Tirtzu of Nazism. That said, this verdict is essentially flawed, and very odd, since it entirely fails to address a substantial part of the legal issues brought before it and presented with great detail during the trial. Choosing to ignore major, central legal aspects, the court got to a point that presents great danger to Israeli democracy; if the high court will not amend this decision, Israel will find itself a place that allows an extreme freedom to defame, a freedom that will allow incitement and delegitimization of public from both sides of the political spectrum. And worse, it will allow every Zionist to be labeled a Fascist. These reasons are why Im Tirtzu means to appeal this verdict in the supreme court."
Wednesday, September 04, 2013
In a slight variation from Apocalyse Now:
The new Obama war chant and battle slogan in Syria will be:
Reprimand with Extreme Prejudice!
Monday, September 02, 2013
Barack Ahaba and the White Whale
By Steven Plaut
Call him Ishmael. After all, he liked to hang around with the reps from the Moslem Brotherhood.
But he was better known as Capt'n Barack Ahaba. And he was on a mission of determination. It was a blind mission, and he was totally obsessed with it. This obsession had taken control of his entire personality. Ahaba's face was scarred and contorted in hatred. His blood rose to boiling as he remembered all those baby seals who had been killed by Moby Dick, in some cases using weapons of destruction banned by the international treaty protecting sea mammals. He was going to lead the US navy in an operation that would respond to the brutal behavior of the whale with warning and reprimand, and possibly even the determined spanking of the great white whale of Syria on its rump. Ahaba's whaler fleet would carry out acts attacks of punishment against some empty Damascus buildings, long ago cleared of its guppies, buildings that have nothing at all to do with the whale.
In his driven quest and obsession, Captain Ahaba had recruited an ugly savage he had picked up from the backwaters and boarding houses of New England named Queequeg. This savage was tall and had a frightening deformed face, which had become distorted back when he was lobbying for the Viet Cong. So Ahaba decided to appoint him Secretary of State for the USS Piquod, which is the naval flagship and aircraft carrier in charge of leading the mission to reprimand the White Whale. It was equipped with harpoons and tomahawks, the perfect instruments to frighten and punish empty guppy buildings in Damascus.
Captain Ahaba gathered together his motley crew for the crusade. He was thinking of gathering them in the Bethel Whalers Chapel in the old Massachusetts whaling town, but then his senior advisor, the cabin boy Reverend Pip, commented that Bethel is the name of a settlement in the occupied Palestinian territories and so they moved the meeting elsewhere to Nantucket. That was when the New Bedford poets first composed the famous poem about Queequeg, entitled There Once was a Man from Nantucket….
The crew members got together at Starbuck's (you surely recall that he was the First Mate of the Piquod) and then - over lattes - they ask one another just what is behind the Captain's blind fury and hatred towards Moby Dick. Isn't it obvious?, replies Stubb. That damned whale is white and therefore the Captain blames him for the death of Trayvon Martin.
One of the other crew members, and I am not making this up because it is really in the Melville book, is named Fedallah, who is described as a strange, "oriental" old Parsee whom Ahab has brought on board unbeknownst to most of the crew. Fedallah is of course a Shi'ite official in the Hezb'Allah. Another member of the crew, and this also is in the Melville book, is named Peleg, who together with Bildad, is in charge of hiring the crew. As a result, he is honored by having a highway intersection near Netanya named after him. The owners of the fleet are Quakers and so believe that no forms of violence more dramatic than severe scolding should ever be perpetrated by fleet vessels.
At last the flotilla of warships takes to the sea, but a weird old mariner named Elijah stands around the docks and warns Ahaba and his men that nothing good can come of the mission. The Cap'n nails a large silver dollar to the mast and promises that anyone who spies the white whale first will be granted the coin for the purposes of acquiring Obamacare.
They sail off and search the seven seas for the monster whale, although their GPS system pretty much knows where it is hiding the whole time. Gabriel is a crazed prophet on the passing ship Jereboam, which you would know is for real and from the Melville book if you had not cheated and read the Cliff Notes in high school. He warns Ahaba that if he actually annihilates the white whale, it will simply be replaced by even worse killer Orcas from the opposition herd, and they are man-eaters all the more dangerous. It does not matter, Ahaba screams, the Orcas are black and white, you know, like ebony and ivory, and he breaks into singing the old Stevie Wonder whaling song about that.
Ahaba orders a special tomahawk harpoon to be forged and he baptizes it with the blood of members of his embassy in Benghazi.
At last they spy their prey. In the distance they see the whale, accompanied by a flock of birds hovering above it with signs that read "US out of Syria," "No War for Oil," and "Stop Imperialism." The birds are all from the London and San Francisco chapters of the Society for the Prevention of Punishment of Ba'athists.
Out of the horizon shoots a speedboat carrying Greenpeace activists who harass the Piquod and demand that the US and France respect the human rights of white whales. Hollywood actors all appear in public with Spare the Leviathan tee shirts. Fedallah gets entangled too badly with the whale and ends up being dragged under the water to become a Shi'ite shaheed. (Read the book if you think I am making THIS part up!)
Be thee reprimanded, screeches the enraged Captain! I chide thee to hell! I castigate you to the deeps! I admonish you to Heaven! Be thee reproved today!
The white whale pretty much just ignores the Captain, and goes on lunching on seals, swallowing some Greenpeace activists as desert.
The very last scene is Queequeg's coffin, the 2016 election campaign in which the tall New England secretary of state seeks to replace Ahaba as skipper of the sinking Piquod.