Blimp deflator: Letting out the gas

Two masters of the expansive gesture

Posted in egypt, israel by Blimp deflator on March 27, 2011

Two masters of the expansive gesture
Ah, those were the days! This charming snap of George W Bush and chum Hosni Mubarak is from the March 2011 edition of Australia/Israel Review — a magazine I have been receiving through my employer. But as I am retiring on March 31, I will no longer be able to quote from it in my blog posts at tweetextensions.com.

Glancing at the article by Jeremy Jones on the back cover, the following passage caught my eye:

    As Gerard Henderson has noted, there is a diversity in the Greens, with some members socially progressive or genuinely concerned with environmental issues, while others are simply reactionary — opposed to progress, jealous of and angry at people who have been socially or economically successful, and in need of hatred and diversion elsewhere to complement their own contempt for others. / The Israel boycotters are in the latter category. . .

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Australia/Israel Review, February 2011

Posted in israel, palestine by Blimp deflator on March 6, 2011

Australia/Israel Review, February 2011
This is one of the more depressing covers of a thoroughly depressing magazine. That there will be another “war” (in reality, an Israeli rampage/massacre) — and another after that, in an endless succession — is taken as a given. Inside, the Editor’s Note begins:

Our cover story this month provides a unique look inside the Israeli military and its preparations to ethically fight (emphasis added) the next war with Hezbollah or Hamas. Peripatetic Middle East journalist Michael Totten visits the Lebanon border, Israel’s JAG corps in Tel Aviv and a unique artificial “city” in the Negev desert to provide some original insights into Israel’s efforts to maintain the traditional IDF ethos of “purity of arms.” (emphasis added).

Really, who are they kidding?

Paul McGeough attacked by Australia/Israel Review

Posted in israel, palestine, turkey by Blimp deflator on January 23, 2011

'The Walkley Award for fiction,' Part 1
'The Walkley Award for fiction,' Part 2
Israeli commando being treated, Mavi Marmara “Of all the available footage [from the Mavi Marmara], including that of an activist stabbing an Israeli soldier, there is none of activists sheltering soldiers,” Bren Carlill writes in the January 2011 issue of Australia/Israel Review.

There are three things I would like to say about this: (1) We don’t know what a lot of the “available footage” shows, as it was seized by the Israelis and is held by them; (2) Where is the footage of an activist stabbing an Israeli soldier? Was it included in the Panorama documentary Death in the Med? I have watched this pro-Israel documentary twice, and don’t remember seeing it; (3) I think there is footage of activists sheltering soldiers. There are also several still photographs of “activists” treating injured soldiers, like the one above from the Turkish newspaper Hurriyet.

I, personally, doubt any Israeli soldier was stabbed. When the allegedly stabbed Israeli commando was interviewed on television, why didn’t he pull up his shirt and show us his wound? That’s what I would have done. I would have said: “Look, this is what they did to me!”

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Out with the ‘self-hating Jew’, in with the ‘narcissistic Jew’

Posted in israel, religion by Blimp deflator on December 28, 2010

'Proud to be ashamed'
Article from the December 2010 issue of Australia/Israel Review. The way in which Harvard psychiatry professor Kenneth Levin is brought in to explain the behavior of Jewish/Israeli critics of Israel reminds me of how the Soviet Union enlisted the services of psychiatrists and psychologists as it sought to discredit (and even compulsorily “treat”) dissidents during the Cold War era. It’s also a little ironic, as Israeli society is a society that is “rapidly closing in on itself” (see Jews for Justice for Palestinians) — as good a definition of narcissism as any, I would suggest.

Zionists criticize New Zealand’s Green Party

Posted in israel, new zealand by Blimp deflator on November 11, 2010

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Zionists criticize New Zealand's Green Party
From Australia/Israel Review of November 2010.
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Wow! Another ‘historic handshake’?

Posted in israel, palestine by Blimp deflator on October 1, 2010

Handshake No 3

Handshake No 2
Handshake No 1
Welcome to my collection of “historic handshakes” — those staged events, always with a benign Uncle Sam in the middle, that supposedly herald progress in the Middle East “peace process”. How many more will we be shown, as the Zionist media attempt to convince us that, with a willingness by both sides to make “concessions”, a century of enmity will be laid to rest. How many people, on seeing these pictures, realize that the two sides are not equal — that one is the conqueror and the other is the conquered, and that the former will never make any concession that threatens its total control over the whole of historic Palestine?

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Israel’s five-point plan to ‘capture’ New Zealand

Posted in new zealand by Blimp deflator on September 8, 2010

Israel's five-point plan to 'capture' New Zealand
From Australia/Israel Review of September, 2010

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Crescent International, June 2010

Posted in religion by Blimp deflator on June 29, 2010

Crescent International, June 2010Australia/Israel Review, June 2010This month’s edition of Crescent International contains articles headlined: Palistan’s slide into total chaos; Two sets of talks, but few expectations for long-suffering Palestinians; Two more years of emergency in Egypt; Bashir arrests opposition leaders in Sudan; Will Britain’s Kafkaesque laws be changed?; Bosnia’s Grand Mufti had acted as “Serb informant”, say victims; NGOs: the West’s soft instrument for hegemonic policies; OSCE: the West’s tool to legitimize the illegitimate; and World Bank and IMF: financial cops of Western hegemony.

The latest issue of Australia/Israel Review went to press before the international uproar over Israel’s May 31 attack on the peace flotilla. There is, however, a brief item headlined Gallivanting to Gaza, which describes those aboard the boats as “a mixture of well-meaning humanitarians and hardcore anti-Israel activists” and says they have set off with aid for “supposedly suffering Gazans”. (To prove they aren’t really suffering, AIR notes: (1) a Maan news agency report of May 18 that Gaza now has an Olympic-sized swimming pool; (2) a report in the Financial Times of May 24 that Gaza’s shops are “bursting with goods”; and (3) a whole lot of Israeli supply-truck statistics.)

Crescent International, May 2010

Posted in uncategorized by Blimp deflator on May 23, 2010

Crescent International, May 2010Australia/Israel Review, May 2010
The May edition of Crescent International includes articles headlined “Obama’s nuclear hypocrisy exposed”, “Zionist Israel: the root cause of Middle East conflict”, “Zionist Israel: a colonial settler-squatter entity”, “What is Israel up to in the Caucasus?”, “Plight of the Roma Muslims in Bulgaria”, “Sarkozy wants complete ban on niqab in France”, and “Peak oil and the rise of political fascism”.

In “Zionist Israel: a colonial settler-squatter entity”, Zafar Bangash asks: “…how did political Zionism, a racist colonial enterprise, succeed in establishing intself in the heartland of Islam despite strong opposition from leading rabbis and the indigenous population of Palestine?”

Meanwhile, Australia/Israel Review asks, rhetorically: “What will happen when Iran gets the bomb?” Well, the first thing that will happen, assuming Iran does get the bomb, is that Israel will lose some of its untrammeled ability to threaten its neighbors.

Crescent International, April 2010

Posted in uncategorized by Blimp deflator on May 22, 2010

Crescent International, April 2010
Australia/Israel Review, April 2010
April’s edition of Crescent International contains articles headlined “The Afghans’ long agony and resistance”, “Zionist, Arabian rulers aligned against Islamic Iran”, “The Vatican’s child-molesting priests”, “Islamic movement needs to challenge the universal myth of democracy”, “Dilemma of democracy facing Muslims in Britain”, “Is Somalia’s ‘president’ a nationalist or agent of Western interventionists?” and “Dubai’s strange history and stranger investors”.

In the article on Muslims in Britain, which discusses the reactions of the police to the demonstrations against “the Israeli slaughter in Gaza last year”, Fahad Ansari notes:

“What is clear is that despite tens of thousands of people from all religions and backgrounds attending the demonstrations and being involved in aggressive behavior that followed, all but two of those arrested were Muslims. What is also clear is that the trouble at the Gaza riots was nowhere near the scale of violence witnessed at the G20 protests, where a branch of the Royal Bank of Scotland was looted, yet only 20 people were charged for offences committed at that demonstration. The police response to Muslim protesters has been wholly disproportionate and seems intentionally designed to deter Muslims from protesting or demonstrating in future.”

In the April edition of Australia/Israel Review, there is an attempt by Bren Carlill, in an article headlined “A job well done” about the assassination of Mahmoud Mabhouh in Dubai, to justify Israel’s “apparent disregard” for what Carlill describes as “legal niceties” in its pursuit of security. (Note that the disregard is only “apparent” in Carlill’s view.) But of course, if you dispense with the rule of law and make security the highest good, you can resort to almost any expediency and come up with a rationale that speciously justifies it. You have to remember, though, that you can’t reasonably complain if the other side does likewise — unless you maintain that you and your rights are intrinsically superior to all others.

He goes on to claim that “any Israeli government that disregarded prohibitions against targeting civilians, and other laws of war, would … rightly be voted out” — as if Israeli governments didn’t get away with such violations all the time. Does he really think that all those Israelis who supported the attack on Gaza last year (nearly 90 percent of the population, according to Israeli public opinion polls) were worried by the deaths of 1,000+ Gazan civilians, or would have been concerned if another 1,000, or even 10,000, civilians had been killed? Besides, at the end of the day Israel would have claimed, regardless of the toll, that the civilians weren’t actually “targeted”. There would have been yet more of that trademark ballyhoo about the civilians having been warned to evacuate certain areas in advance of the attacks.

The reality is that Israel can kill as many civilians as it likes, whenever it likes, and then say the deaths were “inadvertent” or “accidental” — or come out with the usual nonsense about Palestinian “terrorists” being responsible for the deaths through their alleged use of civilians as “human shields”. (I haven’t seen any evidence of Palestinian fighters using civilians in this way. I have, however, seen evidence of Israeli soldiers using Palestinian civilians as human shields.) It is not for nothing that Israel’s critics often focus on its “culture of impunity”.

It is axiomatic, in the Zionist narrative, that the victims of Zionism are always responsible, directly or indirectly, for their own suffering. And anyway, non-Jewish suffering cannot be compared with Jewish suffering, which is indisputably more poignant.