Saturday, November 17, 2007

Kahane-Olmert Debate

The unforgettable televised debate between the late Rabbi Meir Kahane and Ehud Olmert, over 20 years ago. Olmert had no answers then, and as we see he has not yet found an answer to Israel's Arab demographic threat.

Thanks to for the video.

from the Voice of Judea


November 6,2007

Jerusalem Judge calls referendum racist

by Moshe Ben Israel

Convicted for making a referendum for Israel

You are probably one of the people who signed a referendum in the summer of 2005 before the expulsion of the Jews from Gaza and Northern Shomron. More than 100,000 people like you participated in that referendum. As insane as this may sound,Yekutiel Ben Yaakov, the man who initiated that referendum was recently convicted in a Jerusalem court on charges of incitement for his efforts to allow the people of Israel to voice their opinion on this critical issue of life or death for the state of Israel.

This draconian measure being used to silence the majority of Jews in Israel must be protested. Please read the below news item and then send an email petition to the judge urging leniency for Yekutiel Ben Yaakov.

On the 25th of March, 2008 at 10:30 AM Judge Rivka Feldman will be sentencing Yekutiel Ben Yakov for his alleged crime of "incitement to racism". More than 100,000 people participated in the referendum which asked voters to choose their preference of two "disengagement alternatives" - "The Sharon plan" - expulsion of the Jews, or "The Jewish Alternative" - to expel Israel's enemy thereby distancing the threat of Kassam rocket attacks.

Over 90 percent of those who participated, opted for the Jewish plan. Is it any wonder that the government will do anything possible hush these results and to bury any referendum initiative? The last thing Olmert and his ilk need is for the people of Israel to voice their opinion openly and for the average Israeli "right wing extremist" to learn that his views are in the majority and not the views of some extremist fringe element. What soldier will obey orders to expel his brother, when it becomes clear that those giving him the orders are not only demanding that he violate Torah and common sense but also that he execute orders that are anathema to the majority of Israelis.

The courts have given Ben Yakov the victory that he has been seeking. Now that it has been established that it is "racist" and illegal to suggest the alternative of expulsion of our enemies in a referendum, it would surely be deemed racist to actually expel 10,000 Jews from their homes.

The public is urged to attend the hearing for the sentencing in Jerusalem on March 25th at 10:00 AM (Beit Mishpat Shalom)

Funds for the legal defense can be sent to Mishalot Yisrael POBox 6592 Jerusalem Israel

Please send a letter of protest to Judge Rivka Friedman Feldman and urge leniency on behalf of Yekutiel Ben Yakov...All emails can be sent to with the subject Referendums are not illegal.

Funds can also be given now over pay pal at the following link:

see the Kahane-Olmert debate from 20+ years ago with Peter Jennings on Youtube

Thursday, November 08, 2007

A couple of great Jewish links and a Cohn-Chomsky dialogue

I found this magnificient set of links with some great Yiddish links at the bottom from the Jewish Agency for Israel

also this one on Judeo-Arabic works comes from the same source.

Then read:

"Liar...Coward...Little Fascist"

Letters from Noam Chomsky

Some twenty years ago I had a correspondence with Noam Chomsky that lasted for several months. The issues are familiar, and these letters will not add to anyone's knowledge or insights on them. I present the letters now not for their ostensible content but for their style.

The correspondence of academics is generally marked by great courtesy. Sometimes this courtesy is exaggerated so that mockery can be suspected. Sometimes the tone lapses into cool formality and, rarely, thinly veiled incivility. But these deviations from the norm of courtesy are rare.

Professor Chomsky's style, however, is something altogether different and, I believe, unique. Here I was, a perfect stranger, somebody he is unlikely to ever have heard of, somebody who could not have mattered much in his life or work, and yet he invests this correspondence with manic energy, lengthy persistence, and most puzzling of all, with a verbal violence that is almost universally shunned by adults.
--Werner Cohn

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Michael Medved Ask Ron Paul Important Questions in this Open Letter

Friday, October 26, 2007
Posted by: Michael Medved at 6:30 PM

Dear Congressman Paul:

Your Presidential campaign has drawn the enthusiastic support of an imposing collection of Neo-Nazis, White Supremacists, Holocaust Deniers, 9/11 “Truthers” and other paranoid and discredited conspiracists.

Do you welcome- or repudiate – the support of such factions?

More specifically, your columns have been featured for several years in the American Free Press –a publication of the nation’s leading Holocaust Denier and anti-Semitic agitator, Willis Carto. His book club even recommends works that glorify the Nazi SS, and glowingly describe the “comforts and amenities” provided for inmates of Auschwitz.

Have your columns appeared in the American Free Press with your knowledge and approval?

As a Presidential candidate, will you now disassociate yourself, clearly and publicly, from the poisonous propaganda promoted in such publications?

As a guest on my syndicated radio show, you answered my questions directly and fearlessly.

Will you now answer these pressing questions, and eliminate all associations between your campaign and some of the most loathsome fringe groups in American society?

Along with my listeners (and many of your own supporters), I eagerly await your response.

Respectfully, Michael Medved

Friday, October 26, 2007

New Middle East Forum

Get in on the ground floor.

So many forums will ban you if you do not agree with the prevalent (anti-Israel) philosophy. I try to be polite everywhere I go but I keep getting banned at some. For example, I was banned at the Democratic Underground because they thought that the Israel National News was "right wing" and one is not allowed to be right wing at that site. Husband and I have been banned from a number of sites, including the latest "Political Crossfire" which we have both been banned for due to an anti-Israel moderator who claims that all "Zionists" are "making personal attacks" on others. So invite your enemies to my new forum. I will not ban people for a difference of opinion.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Doris Lessing's Asymetric Argument

"Nobody's" elegant argument:
why should some political driven Nobel laureate from britian judge the value of 9/11 to be less than the self induced ira terror in britain? i am talking about doris lessing.

the ira terror war has been on for decades and ours has been but 6 years. lessing should have the decency to wait another 24 years before rendering judgement. 9/11 was a salvo against america similar to the sneak attack by japan in which fewer casualties happened. one could use lessing's criteria to argue that america's entrance into ww2 was an exaggerated response thus leaving england to fight the nazis.
alone. crazyworld forum

Monday, October 15, 2007

Jimmy Carter: Follow the Money.

Mr. Christian himself, or Mr. Corrupt?

Carter's Arab financiers
By Rachel Ehrenfeld

December 21, 2006

To understand what feeds former president Jimmy Carter's anti-Israeli frenzy, look at his early links to Arab business.

Between 1976-1977, the Carter family peanut business received a bailout in the form of a $4.6 million, "poorly managed" and highly irregular loan from the National Bank of Georgia (NBG). According to a July 29, 1980 Jack Anderson expose in The Washington Post, the bank's biggest borrower was Mr. Carter, and its chairman at that time was Mr. Carter's confidant, and later his director of the Office of Management and Budget, Bert Lance.

At that time, Mr. Lance's mismanagement of the NBG got him and the bank into trouble. Agha Hasan Abedi, the Pakistani founder of the Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI), known as the bank "which would bribe God," came to Mr. Lance's rescue making him a $100,000-a-year consultant. Abedi then declared: "we would never talk about exploiting his relationship with the president." Next, he introduced Mr. Lance to Saudi billionaire Gaith Pharaon, who fronted for BCCI and the Saudi royal family. In January 1978, Abedi paid off Mr. Lance's $3.5 million debt to the NBG, and Pharaon secretly gained control over the bank.

Mr. Anderson wrote: "Of course, the Saudis remained discretely silent... kept quiet about Carter's irregularities... [and] renegotiated the loan to Carter's advantage."

There is no evidence that the former president received direct payment from the Saudis. But "according to... the bank files, [it] renegotiated the repayment terms... savings... $60,000 for the Carter family... The President owned 62% of the business and therefore was the largest beneficiary." Pharaon later contributed generously to the former president's library and center.

When Mr. Lance introduced Mr. Carter to Abedi, the latter gave $500,000 to help the former president establish his center at Emory University. Later, Abedi contributed more than $10 million to Mr. Carter's different projects. Even after BCCI was indicted — and convicted -— for drug money laundering, Mr. Carter accepted $1.5 million from Abedi, his "good friend."

A quick survey of the major contributors to the Carter Center reveals hundreds of millions of dollars from Saudi and Gulf contributors. But it was BCCI that helped Mr. Carter established his center.

BCCI's origins were primarily ideological. Abedi wanted the bank to reflect the supra-national Muslim credo and "the best bridge to help the world of Islam, and the best way to fight the evil influence of the Zionists."

Shortly after assuming office, in March 1977, Mr. Carter made his first public statement regarding a Palestinian "homeland." Since then, he has devoted much of his time to denouncing Israel's self-defense against Palestinian terrorism, which he claims is not only "abominable oppression and persecution" of the Palestinians, but also damages U.S. interests in the region.

By the time BCCI was shut down in July1991, it operated in 73 countries with a deficit of $12 billion, which it had managed to hide with wealthy Arab shareholders and Western luminaries. Among them Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan al-Nahayan of Abu Dhabi, who gave hundreds of millions of dollars to Yasser Arafat and Palestinian terrorist groups, and who branded the United States: "our enemy number one"; Former head of Saudi foreign intelligence service, and King Faisal's brother-in-law, Kamal Adham — who with another Saudi, the banker of the royal family, Khaled bin Mahfouz, staged BCCI's attempt to illegally purchase the Washington-based First American bank, in the early 1980s.

True to its agenda, BCCI assisted in spreading and strengthening the Islamic message; they enabled Pakistan's nuclear ambitions, and helped the Palestinian leadership to amass a $10 billion-plus fortune, used to further terrorist activities and to buy more influence in the West.
BCCI founders also supported the Islamic fundamentalist opposition to the Shah of Iran, and saw it as an opportunity to undermine Western influence in the Gulf. They assisted the revolution financially, reinforcing their position within the leadership of the Iranian revolution. Ironically, the success of that revolution cost Mr. Carter his presidency.

BCCI's money also facilitated the Saudi agenda to force Israel to recognize Palestinians "rights," convincing Egyptian president Anwar Sadat to sign the Camp David Accords in September 1978. Since then, Mr. Carter repeatedly provided legitimacy to Arafat's corrupt regime, and now, like the Saudis, he even sides with homicidal Hamas as the "legitimate" representative of the Palestinian people.

In a recent interview with the Los Angeles Times, Mr. Carter again laid responsibility for U.S. bias against the destitute, depressed and (consequently) violent Palestinians on American policy makers' helplessness, over the last 30 years, against the menacing tactics of the powerful American-Israel Political Action Committee (AIPAC).

However, it seems that AIPAC's real fault was its failure to outdo the Saudi's purchases of the former president's loyalty. "There has not been any nation in the world that has been more cooperative than Saudi Arabia," the New York Times quoted Mr. Carter June 1977, thus making the Saudis a major factor in U. S. foreign policy.

Evidently, the millions in Arab petrodollars feeding Mr. Carter's global endeavors, often in conflict with U.S. government policies, also ensure his loyalty.

Rachel Ehrenfeld is the director of the American Center for Democracy.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Rice indicates shift in policy: Palestinian state before compliance

I had to put up this article by Dr Aaron Lerner from the IsraelInsider because it is too important to let get by.

By Dr. Aaron Lerner September 28, 2007

When U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice talks in a public forum she is extremely careful about what she says. And what she doesn't.

That's what makes her remarks at the 23 September press conference at United Nations Headquarters she held with Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon and other Quartet Principals so disturbing

Here is what she first said:

"And if you look at the phase-one commitments, it is very hard to imagine the establishment of a Palestinian State in which the phase-one commitments have not been realized or have not been carried through. And so, absolutely, those phase-one commitments have to be met."

So far so good.

But then she said:

"... But it is absolutely the case that you're not going to be able to establish a Palestinian State if you don't have a commitment to end terror, if you don't have a commitment to end settlement activity, if you don't have a commitment to non-violence. All of those things have to be achieved. The Palestinians will have to have capacities. They will have to have security forces that can provide security against terrorism, but that can also provide security for the Palestinian people."

Fancy footwork.

First Rice says that "it is very hard to imagine the establishment of a Palestinian State" if the phase-one commitments haven't been carried out.

But Rice doesn't make it a red line. Instead the red line is "commitment" rather than action.

Put simply, the solid red line is that before there is a sovereign Palestinian state the PA has to issue are really well-written declaration -- a really strongly worded one. And they have to be armed to the teeth.

What about actually doing something on the ground? "Terror" has been given the same weight as "settlement activity". As far as Rice seems to be concerned, the people building a sukkah in Ramat Eshkol are just as much a problem as the terrorist trying to blow up a bomb in Tel Aviv. This gives tremendous "wiggle room" to argue that both parties are not behaving.

But again: while the Roadmap spoke of action, Rice's red line appears to be only declarative in nature.

But that's not what phase-one was all about. It requires both talk and action.

Here is the wording:

Talk: "Palestinian leadership issues unequivocal statement reiterating Israel's right to exist in peace and security and calling for an immediate and unconditional ceasefire to end armed activity and all acts of violence against Israelis anywhere."

Action: "All official Palestinian institutions end incitement against Israel."

Talk: "Palestinians declare an unequivocal end to violence and terrorism "

Action: "and undertake visible efforts on the ground to arrest, disrupt, and restrain individuals and groups conducting and planning violent attacks on Israelis anywhere."

And while Rice talks about apparently arming the Palestinians to the teeth (does "but that can also provide security for the Palestinian people" mean an ability to fight Israel?) she also ignores action:

"Rebuilt and refocused Palestinian Authority security apparatus begins sustained, targeted, and effective operations aimed at confronting all those engaged in terror and dismantlement of terrorist capabilities and infrastructure. This includes commencing confiscation of illegal weapons ..."

Instead of real action we have some photo ops.

This week the PA tried to make a splash in the press by handing over some pipes to Israeli authorities -- claiming that they were Qassam rockets.

Similar hollow photo ops can be expected in the future. This while "moderate peace partner" Mahmoud Abbas continues to take a strong position against Israel right to defend itself from terror attacks.

The last thing that Israeli officials can afford to do is ignore this policy shift.

The shift away from requiring Palestinian compliance before the forming of a Palestinian state isn't a matter of nuance. It is fundamental.

Wake up, Folks!!

Thursday, September 06, 2007

On Jewish Guilt and Jesus

I have found two books which have profoundly shaken my worldview up. The books themselves are quite different though on the same topic. Jewish 'guilt' or lack thereof, in the death of Jesus. I picked up the Cohn book (Cohn was an Israeli Supreme Court Judge, retired when he wrote this book) -- What a fantastic analysis! I have read the Gospels many times over but never even noticed the discrepancies in them, or thought about it. Cohn has a wide knowledge of Jewish Law and history and of course an enormous intellect to go with it. I think he has a point, but most Christians can't handle it.

I actually wrote a review of it in Amazon today (not up there yet) and have quite a few comments on the reviews.

The Trial and Death of Jesus by Haim Cohn:

One thing led to another and I am now in the middle of the following book and in correspondence with the author.

The Ghost in the Gospels: The True Story of How Jesus Died and How We All Missed It for 2,000 Years , by Leon Zitzer

I have always known and understood the Jewishness of Jesus in my heart, which I think is why I am moved by the Christians who have the sticker : "My Boss is a Jewish Carpenter".... though heaven knows I don't agree with them about everything!!

Zitzer goes even further with a wonderful thesis regarding Barabbas and Judas which makes magnificent sense. I have never been able to buy the Mel Gibson vision of the Passion. Most Jews don't. It may not be as these 2 people have laid it out, but if it is, time to make some changes in our thinking. Now is actually a very religious time, where millions and millions of people are acting out of religious convictions. Jihads are being fought, wars are being fought over religious conviction; mosques are popping up all over, Christians are being thrown persecuted in the middle east and elsewhere, and Jews are back to being "the sons of apes and pigs."

All of the book reviews (written by nonJews) give Judge Cohn credit for scholarship and such but cannot accept it. They have to have it that the Jews have at least some guilt over the death of Jesus! No one seems to be able argue his thesis away. Argument is based on sheer emotion, not to mention a couple of millennia of tradition as to how things were with Jesus and how things were supposed to have happened. That Jews should be completely innocent, Christians (and maybe even secularists) cannot accept! Maybe they would put a little guilt on the Romans, but Heaven knows most (if not all) of the guilt has to go to the Jews.

Zitzer tells me that he is getting a very hostile reception from everyone, including Messianic Jews, which I would have thought would have taken it well. Anyway, If this is an area of interest of any of you, I highly recommend both books above.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

The Myth of Rachel Corrie

The Myth of Rachel Corrie

By Ronald Radosh

Dr. Radosh is author or co-author of 14 books, His work has appeared frequently in such venues as The New Republic, The Weekly Standard, National Review, The American Interest, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, and other journals and newspapers.

This letter was sent in June to Ed Herendeen, the founder and artistic director of the Contemporary American Theater Festival (CATF) in Shepherdstown, West Virginia, in protest of the production of "My Name is Rachel Corrie" (reviewed on HNN this week).

Dear Mr. Herendeen:

I moved to this area [Shepherdstown, West Virginia] one year ago, largely because it is a community of cultured people active in the arts. Last year my wife and I not only bought a series ticket to CATF, but we invited lots of friends to come from the DC metropolitan area to attend the performances.

I wish to tell you why this year I am boycotting the festival, in protest of your production of My Name is Rachel Corrie. On the CATF website, the play is described as a vehicle to show Rachel Corrie’s “eye-opening Middle East reports,” which are said to be “powerfully direct.” In the Shepherdstown Observer article, you are quoted as noting her “passionate commitment: and her quest to “understand one of the most turbulent conflicts on earth.” You connected to this play, you say, “because of Rachel’s idealistic voice,” which reminds you of your “youth and idealism.”

Your comments and the description of the play is disingenuous and utter nonsense. Rachel Corrie was not a simple idealist seeking to comprehend the truth about conflict in the Middle East. She was, rather, a committed member and activist in the so-called International Solidarity Movement, a group whose own description of their position cites their endorsement of “armed struggle” against Israeli men, women and children. At the same time, the ISM rejects Israel’s right to defend itself against never ending terrorism aimed at its very existence.

As I write this letter, the violence and Quassam missles flying into the Gaza town of Sderot are increasing, and Hamas promises to soon use newer long range missiles that will reach further and larger nearby towns. The Hamas Prime Minister, Ismail Haniyeh, has said that “we will keep to the same path until we win one of two goals: victory or martyrdom.” Their spokesman Abu Obeida has noted that we “will strike at the enemy anywhere in Palestine, whether with suicide attacks or operations against soldiers.” One of its leaders told Al Jazeera: “We recognize that violence is necessary and it is permissible for oppressed and occupied people to use armed resistance and we recognize their right to do so.”

Hamas is serious. Since 2000, it has carried out dozens of “suicide” bombings in Israel, and killed more than 250 people. Hamas and Fatah groups have also smuggled weapons into Gaza in preparation for major attacks against Israel. Last year alone they smuggled into Gaza 33 tons of military grade high explosives, 20,000 assault rifles, 38 long-rage missiles, 12 guided missiles, 95 anti tank rocket launchers and 410 anti tank rockets.

It is the activists of Hamas and other terrorist groups that the ISM uses its American cadre to protect. Rachel Corrie’s parents, who are speaking at the forthcoming “The world condemns Israel” rally on June 10th in our nation’s capitol, have said that their daughter was “working in Rafah with a nonviolent resistance organization…trying to stop the demolition of Palestinian homes and wells.” In the play, Corrie says she is working among “unarmed people” and that the “vast majority of Palestinians…are engaging in Gandhian non-violent resistance.” Poor Gandhi must be turning over in his grave. Where did Rachel Corrie think the Hamas terrorists get their rockets, rifles and rocket launchers from? What does she think they use them for?

The weapons she somehow is supposedly unaware of are in fact smuggled into Gaza by a network of hidden tunnels. One of those tunnels was under the house she was supposedly protecting from destruction. Her claim used in the play that she was seeking to prevent “Israeli demolition of civilian homes” is false.The IDF’s aim was not to destroy the house, but to cover up the tunnel they had found dug there by the terrorist groups. Corrie was knowingly demonstrating in a dangerous war zone where she should not have been. She was a human shield for Hamas terrorists who cynically use gullible Americans to deter attacks on their arms caches and homes that are used as weapon depots. Corrie knew the use to which she was put. As she writes, “imagine the difficulties the Israeli army would face if they shot an unarmed U.S. citizen.” In other words, she knew she and her comrades were good propaganda subjects for Hamas.

Sadly, Corrie died when an Israeli bulldozer ran her over. We have all seen the famous photo: Corrie standing way in front with a bullhorn, and then, the next photo of her lying near death with other ISM cadre standing over her. The intent is to show that Corrie was intentionally killed by the IDF driver, who saw her clearly. Indeed, the play ends with the words of an ISM militant, Tom Dale, who was there. He “knew absolutely that she was there,” the audience hears. Another ISM militant, Joe “Smith,” signed an affidavit that Israel engaged in the “intentional crushing of a human being,” and five other ISM activists who were there seconded his affidavit. They are, and Rickman-Viner’s script agrees, charging Israel with intentional murder of a peaceful protester. As the late Yassir Arafat said, “Rachel Corrie is a martyr.”

I suggest you read the article by investigative reporter Joshua Hammer, which appeared in the progressive magazine Mother Jones, a vehicle sympathetic to the Palestinian cause and firmly on the left/liberal side of the political spectrum. (Sept.-Oct.2003) Hammer found that the very intention of the ISM team Corrie was part of was “to engage the Israeli military.” When they heard an Israeli bulldozer would soon be in the area, the team moved to the house towards which it was heading. Corrie put herself between the wall of the house and the Israeli D-9 bulldozer. Her death, according to Tom Dale, took place in six or seven seconds.

What did Hammer find? First, the famous photo of Corrie with the megaphone was taken way earlier. Half an hour earlier, she had given it to another militant. When the bulldozer was near her, Corrie was kneeling way down in the dirt, a position that made it difficult for her to be seen. The operator of the vehicle had a limited field of vision, and saw no one in front of him. “You can’t hear, you can’t see well. You can go over something and you’ll never know,” he told investigators. Moreover, the IDF takes videos from the bulldozer cockpit for the record. Hammer saw these videos. His conclusion: The IDF “makes a credible case that the operators, peering out through the narrow, double-glazed, bulletproof windows, their view obscured behind pistons and the giant scooper, might not have seen Corrie kneeling behind them.” Why don’t you consider ending the play with this, rather than Tom Dale’s charge of intentional murder?

After the audience hears this, they will see a home video of a ten year old charming Rachel Corrie talking about the horror of world hunger. How sweet. How manipulative. How phony. Did the mature Rachel Corrie ever consider how the jihad she was supporting was viewed by Israeli young women her own age? Did she ever see the effects of the suicide bombings and rockets that the Hamas militants she sought to protect had on Israeli families?

In the case of Rachel Corrie, her youthful idealism led to the advancement of evil acts by terrorist groups. She was not a heroic peace activist. To quote the Wall Street Journal editorial that appeared a day after her death: “It’s a shame that Rachel Corrie died the way she did. It’s shameful that she lived the way she did.” In the context of the increasing attacks on Israel by Hamas, Fatah, Islamic Jihad and Al-Aqsa fighters, presentation of this one-sided play- actually a crude example of agit-prop at its worst- can only inflame sentiment towards the false conclusion that the terrorists are really only freedom fighters.

Rachel Corrie was not an innocent. She was a dedicated believer who was part of the ISM movement. She knew well the importance of propaganda. As she wrote to herself: “Set up system for media work.” Writing home, she asked that her parents when talking to the press never say things like we must end “the cycle of violence,” because it was not a “balanced conflict,” but a case of victims fighting Israeli imperialists. Think of this “before talking to reporters,” she advised them.

Sadly, Corrie’s wish is carried out in the play, and now will spread to Shepherdstown in this forthcoming production.


Ronald Radosh
Prof. Emeritus of History, City Univ. of New York
Adjunct Fellow, The Hudson Institute, Washington, DC

can be read, along with comments, here

don't miss the comments

CNN & Christiane Amanpour "Shoddy Journalism"

must-see TV...

MSNBC's Dan Abrams Slams "CNN's Holy War"

The August 27th broadcast of MSNBC's Live with Dan Abrams slammed CNN's "God's Warriors" as biased shoddy journalism, with host Dan Abrams saying at the outset that the three-part series "was not what it claimed or promised to be." In the segment, titled "CNN's Holy war?", Abrams also said "CNN should have called it what it was, a defense of Islamic fundamentalism and the worst type of moral relativism."

According to Abrams, CNN's Christiane Amanpour, "avoided getting bogged down in objectivity." (See the full video clip below.)

CAMERA offered its own detailed criticism of the Amanpour series in the articles linked below:

1. God's Jewish Warriors — CNN's Abomination

2. God's Muslim Warriors — CNN's Double Standard

3. God's Christian Warriors— CNN Slurs Christians

Here's the full video clip of the segment from MSNBC's Live with Dan Abrams:

Friday, June 22, 2007

from The Long Road from Kherson,

Rev Taschlicky was born in Kherson, near Odessa, where his father, a gifted composer and chazan, taught him to read music as fluently as Hebrew.

Youthful breadwinner

Afte the outbreak of the Russo-Japanese war in 1905, the family fled from Russian and eventually settle in Budapest, the capital of Hungary.

Thanks to his father, music and chazanut were the dominant factor in young Moshe's life well before he was eight. By then, with his father too ill to work regularly, sweet voiced Moshe became the family's breadwinner both as a concert performer and chorister.

The age of 13 conferred on him the traditional right to lead synagogue services. Accompanied first by his father and later by an impresario, the young wonder chazan toured the Jewish communities of Hungary, officiating at Sabbath prayers and giving Sunday recitals.

He was only 16 (and now a tenor) when he gained his first post as a resident chazan, at a Budapest synagogue. Three years later, the unrest unleashed by Bela Kun's short-lived communist revolution began to affect his career. To prevent his family's deportation back to Soviet Russia, he secured a state position in the Budapest Opera, where he sang while remaining a chazan.

Operas and oratorios

But with antisemitism rampant in Hungary, he felt uncomfortable there and in 1923 he moved across Europe to Holland. He was appointed chazan in Arnhem, which then contained about 700 families.

The Jews of Arnhem had a rich musical and cultural life and the young Taschlicky, with his fine voice and wide repertoire, soon found himself in demand as a soloist in such oratorios as Handel's Judas Maccabeus and Messiah, Mahlers Das Lied von der Erde, and Berlioz's Damnation de Faust.

Call to Berlin

Hoping to pursue and operatic career, he was obliged for a time to give up chazzanut. Nevertheless, he continued to appear before Jewish audiences, singing classical and liturgical music, including compositions by his father Salomon Taschlicky.

It was the offer of a synagogue vacancy in Berlin that took him on the next stage of his journey. Despite the subsequent rise of Nazism, some of Rev. Taschlicky's fondest memories of Germany are of the non-Jewish music lovers who came to hear him in the synagogue, sometimes leaving boxes of chocolates by his seat.

Cinema intervals

In 1929, an invitation to tour America raised his hopes that he could finally escape from the insecurity of Europe. In the United States he traveled from one major Jewish center to another and was hailed as a celebrity. In some synagogues, admission to Friday night services conducted by Chazan Taschlicky was by ticket only. He was even asked to perform in cinemas during the intermission in the silent movies.

But he failed to gain entry visas to the United States for his family and he returned after only a year to Europe--this time to a synagogue in Vienna. Once again, it was his worry about rising antisemitism that prevented him from settling down. He disbelieved the confident assurances of his synagogue employers that Nazism would never spread to Austria from Germany. In 1933, he left Austria for Holland. Little over a year later, he moved to England where in 1935 Golders Green synagogue wisely selected him as its cantor out of 13 applicants.

Safe haven

At last, this wandering minstrel had reached a safe haven. With his singing, he delighted the congregation for the next 35 years...

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Moise Taschlicky, the author of the piece below (on the right), his family, and his father, who was a student of the famous Seidel Rovner .

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

LECTURE ON JEWISH MUSIC by Rev. M. Taschlicky July 18th, 1946

Only few definite statements can be made concerning the kind and quality of the artistic developments of the Jewish traditional psalm singing. So much seems certain that folk music of olden times originated in family circles and developed into songs which were heard by professional singers in the temple.

When Moses redeemed the Israelites from the bondage of Egypt and when he led them through the divided Red Sea he praised the Lord by singing. And the children of Israel joined him in singing the Shirah , which is well known to all. Later Miriam, the prophetess, sister of Moses and Aaron, took a timbrel - a kind of drum - with all the other women following her with such instruments, they sang similar verses as Moses. It may, therefore, be that the music was influenced by the Egyptians as the Hebrews had been living in Egypt for many centuries.

Later on, at the time of the Jewish Kings, temple music appears to have been taught more systematically. We remember when King Saul was distressed by evil spirits he engaged David to play on his harp, and it was through his wonderful playing that the King found rest and peace. The Bible states that King David appointed trained singers, instrumentalists, and masters skilled in music who were responsible for conducting the divine service.

The prophet Nehemia in Jerusalem, after having marched around the city, is said to have stood opposite the temple singing hymns of praise to God. Nehemia and Joshua served in the sanctuary as members of the famous Levitical choir. The Levites were specially trained and had special duties to perform. They marched in body to the temple, beautifully dressed. They were trained not only vocally but also instrumentally. Trumpet, harp, cymbalon, violin are instruments they used skillfully.

We are reading in our daily prayers "Praise the Lord with the blast of the horn, with harp and lyre. Praise Him with dance, string instruments and the pipe." We can imagine how beautiful and impressive the service in the temple must have been in those days. Under such circumstances and in such atmosphere, decorum and devotion of the congregation must have dwelled in the sanctuary. (Which, of course, stands in no comparison to our services.)

It is an unfortunate fact that since the destruction of the temple we are forbidden to make use of instruments in orthodox Synagogues on Sabbath and Jomtovin (religious holidays) , as a sign of mourning over the loss of the temple. But let us hope that the time will come when a new temple will be built and we shall be able to praise the Lord and sing with even greater devotion and more beautifully still.

Let me point out that although many of our old traditional melodies were lost through centuries of wandering all over the world, we still possess many original and lovely melodies of olden times. Melodies which are based on real oriental style and spirit. They are composed in minor key, mexolodish (could he mean "mixolydian"?) or freygish . They remind us of Arabic melodies. Something different. Something from far away. When we listen to these melodies you get a feeling of sadness and hope at the same time. You are reminded of the glory of Zion, the holy city of Jerusalem, her beautiful incomparable blue skies, her glorious white buildings, the mighty walls. Wisdom, Learning and Purity spread over the Holy City. This is the feeling that I have when I close my eyes and concentrate and listen to oriental music .... illustrations...

Another interesting fact I am sure you will remember from the time when you prepare to be a Barmitzvah. You found that the holy scripture was accompanied by accents known as "Ta'amim " or "Trop." On almost every word we find special signs placed above and under the word. Those melodies are probably thousands of years old and are typically oriental ....illustrations...
After the destruction of the temple which was about 2000 years ago, Jews were scattered all over the world. They immigrated to Spain, Russia, America, Britannia, France, Holland, Germany, Rumania, Hungary, etc. In order to keep up the tradition they opened houses of learning and prayer, and through this they kept Judaism alive. The chasan became primarily the reader of the service.
In the 16th century the Russian Jews introduced the first musical service. Later, prominent chasanim (plural of chasan ) and composers like Rosowsky , Minkowsky, Seidel Rovner and many others composed great musical works and harmonised them beautifully for full choir, Some of the chasanim harmonised without the theoretical knowledge of music, entirely through their natural hearing, and it so happened, that in spire of little theoretical knowledge all chords were sounded lovely.

A gifted boy aged 6 or 7 was sent to a famous chasan where we was living in order to be trained as a singer, and became a soloist later. This often proved to be a hard life for these little boys, as not all chasanim were in a good financial position. After years of training they became so perfect that they often touched their listeners to tears. They were so famous that they were kidnapped occasionally by other chasanim and after weeks of searching were recaptured, sometimes with the help of the police. This, by the way, happened to my father, when he was a boy of 10. He was a pupil of Seidel Rovner, * famous chasan and composer. Seidel Rovner had a choir of 40-50 boys and men. The compositions he composed, I think, can be compared to those of Verdi and Bach. The following is a true story which will show you his enthusiasm whilst conducting his choir:

One Thursday afternoon when the chasan had a rehearsal with his choir in his house, a little boy stood outside the window listening to the wonderful singing. He carried a cockerel which he was supposed to take to the shochet for the Sabbath meal. The choir was just in the middle of a very soft tune when suddenly the cock outside the window started to crow and spoiled the most beautiful pianissimo. The chasan, dressed in a long silken kaftan with white stockings, a long beard, and of course, a cap on his head, got so furious at this Interrupting that he threw the tuning fork , the only thing handy, at the boy. The fork smashed the window and shocked the little boy who quickly picked it up and ran away with the fork and cock. The chasan ran after the boy with the intention of beating him for this disturbance. After a while the chasan returned exhausted, accompanied by a few of his members with his precious tuning fork and the rehearsal could continue.

Many of those Jews at that time were strictly orthodox and great scholars, and many of them were chassidim. They did not attend opera houses or concerts, not because they did not like them, only because those places were not holy. They believed everything they did should be devoted to His Name only - to God. Music to them is something holy as the Bible considers music to be one of the seven wisdoms of the world. It was the Synagogue where they received musical education which was to their complete satisfaction. (A chassid is a pious Jew, originated in the 18 century in Eastern Europe. He does not expect much from this world but he believes in life to come, in reincarnation. He believes in the Rabbi being closer to God than anyone else. He believes in and fears evil spirits .) Chasidic melodies are the fundamental source of the Yiddische Lied. Imagine for a moment a long table with hundreds of chassidim and at the head of the table the holy Rabbi. The Rabbi with a long white beard starts to hum a tune, only the first sentence, and all the chassidim join in instantly.... illustration...

The chassidic melodies have a special charm, and express praise to the Lord for redemption and happiness. The well known Yiddische Songs are mostly based on these tunes .... A few examples...

In the 19th century with the removal of the Ghetto barriers Jews made important contributions to European music. Pupils of the aforementioned chasanim became famous composers, singers and conductors. In Italy Salamone Rossi , rabbi and composer, was an outstanding figure and devoted much of his energy to the harmonising of synagogal melodies. Towards the end of the 18th century, the Jews were permitted to enter academies of music. The results were speedy and phenomenal.

Amongst those who held high positions were Giacomo Meyerbeer (son of a chasan), who composed famous operas (in Hungary?) Jaques Halevy , composer of the famous opera "The Jewess" and composer of many beautiful synagogal music.

Jaques Offenbach (son of a chasan), composer of the famous oratorio "Eliju ", famous violin concerto and very many songs. Ferdinand Hiller , the originator of oratorio music. (His famous oratorio called "Destruction of Jerusalem" ) Anton Rubenstein, famous pianist and composer and founder of the Russian Conservatoire in Moskow.

I don't think you know that the king of all waltz and dance music was a Jew: - Johann Strauss . And of course his father and brothers were also musicians. (Who does not know the Blue Danube and Fledermaus which is supposed to be the classic operetta?) Later we have Gustave Mahler , who composed in the style of Wagner introducing many Jewish motifs.

In England, Jewish musicians have also contributed very much to the standard of English music. Sir Michael Costa, composer, John Barnet, composer, Isaac Nathan , vocalist, etc. We must not forget Carl Goldmark , who composed "The Queen of Sheva" introducing Jewish feelings and oriental colouring. Maurice Ravel , the most modern composer in France , an Impressionist of music, who prefers the oriental style in his compositions. He also composed many Yiddische Songs .............illustrations....

Arnold Schoenberg , composer. The greatest revolutionary force in music today.
In America , Louis Gruenberg , founder of jazz and negro music.

In Palestine today, composers have shown the world a great deal. The music in Palestine is of a very high standard, Joel Engel is one of the famous composers. He composed the famous drama called "The Dibuk" (The Spirits) Amongst his other compositions is the most popular Kaddish song. Palestine is the only country in the world that has her national orchestra, opera, oratorio played exclusively by Jews; and of course every text is sung in modern Hebrew. Palestinian music is produced exclusively by Jews. But we must not forget that music all over the world is being played and sung mostly by Jewish soloists.

Here then are a few names of the most famous Jewish artists: -
(Some you may have enjoyed listening to)

  • Pianists: Rubinstein. Solomon. Dr Weingartner. Moiseivitch. Schnabel. Dame Myra Hess. Harriette Cohen.
  • Violinists: Yehudi Menuhin. Kreisler. Hubermann. Yasha Heifitz. Scigetti. Alex. Schmuler. Ida Handel, and many more
  • Singers: Sopranos: Yearitza Maria. Selma Kurz (daughter of a shochet and chasan) (famous star of the Viennese opera.). Gitta Alpa (opera singer and film actress) (daughter of a Budapest choir master) Baritones: Joseph Schwartz (son of a chasan. First baritone at Berlin Opera House. Later Metropolitan, New York,)Schorr (Famous bass, Berlin Opera House, Son of a chasan.) Alex. Kipnis (called the successor of Schalyapin. Former choir boy at the Warschau Synagogue. Now New York Metoropolitan) Tenors: Yadlowka, (Berlin Opera House Kammersinger of Kasier Wilhelm). Joseph Schmidt, (concert singer, and film star. Former chorister Richard Tauber, known to everyone here .

And here are the famous chasanim of the last century: -

  • Russia: Rosowsky, Minkowsky, Rosumna, Bachmann, etc
  • Budapest: Prof. Lazarus. Quartin, etc Vienna: Prof. Sulzer (also composer). Bela Futtman. Male Goldstein
  • Berlin: Musikdirektor Aaron Friedman (also composer)
  • Warschau: Sirota, etc New York: Rosenblatt, David Reutmann
    Synagogal Composers
  • Berlin: Levandowsky. Baer (Baal Tefillah)
  • Vienna: Sulzer. Male Goldstein
  • London: Prof. Sam. Allmann (composed also two operas. Conductor of Hampstead Synagogue) Rev. Monbach. Rev. Hast.
  • Budapest: Salomon Taschlicky (my father. Yiddish opera "Three Good Deeds")

  • Conductors: Klemperer. Bruno Walter Prof Ochs.

Jewish Music makers online:

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Some thoughts on BBC bias & NPR

Here's the deal for me. NPR carries the BBC World Service on most of its radio stations. If NPR is supposed to be "impartial," should it farm out its airwaves to a biased foreign press?

BBC admits: We are biased on religion and politics

Internal corporation memo on ‘impartiality’ summit leaked to British media exposes truth on BBC bias

Hagit Klaiman Published: 10.23.06, 16:10 / Israel News

LONDON – The British Broadcasting Corporation has been struggling for several years against criticisms and claims of biased reporting concerning the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and distorted coverage of the global fight against terror.

Following a diplomatic incident with Israel, the BBC appointed an editor known for his objective reporting, however, the true stance of the corporation’s editors remained the same.

An internal memo, recently discovered by the British media, revealed what the BBC has been trying to hide. Senior figures admitted in a recent 'impartiality' summit that the BBC was guilty of promoting Left-wing views and anti-Christian sentiment.

Most executives admitted that the corporation’s representation of homosexuals and ethnic minorities was unbalanced and disproportionate, and that it leaned too strongly towards political correctness, the overt promotion of multiculturalism, anti-Americanism and discrimination against the countryside.

Okay to trash Bible, not Quran

A truly shocking revelation to come out of the summit was expected to invoke a storm in Britain, which has already reached the boiling point with regards to the treatment of Muslims and the issue of the veil.

For the purpose of illustration, the executives were given a scenario in which Jewish Comedian Sasha Baron Cohen would participate in a program titled ‘Room 101’, a studio program where guests would be asked for their opinions on different issues, and allowed to symbolically throw things they hated in a garbage bin.

The executives were asked what they would do if Cohen decided to throw ‘Kosher food’, the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Bible, and the Quran in the garbage bin.

The executives said they would allow everything to be thrown in the garbage bin, save the Quran, for fear of offending the British Muslim community.,7340,L-3318582,00.html

But wait! There's more:

BBC pays £200,000 to ‘cover up report on anti-Israel bias’ -

An anti-Israel bias??? Say it ain't so!

Here is something from Dvorak about the bias in the coverage from the BBC, and then this!

The BBC has been accused of “shameful hypocrisy” over its decision to spend £200,000 blocking a freedom of information (FOI) request about its reporting in the Middle East.

I have to find the correct link for this:

The BBC has been accused of “shameful hypocrisy” over its decision to spend £200,000 blocking a freedom of information (FOI) request about its reporting in the Middle East'

The corporation, which has itself made extensive use of FOI requests in its journalism, is refusing to release papers about an internal inquiry into whether its reporting has been biased towards Palestine.
The corporation is fighting a landmark High Court action, which
starts next week, in a bid to prevent the public finding out what is in the review, which is believed to be critical of the BBC’s coverage in the region.


The BBC’s determination to bury the report has led to speculation that the report was damning in its assessment of the BBC’s coverage of the Arab-Israeli conflict that the BBC wants to keep it under wraps at all costs.

And be sure to read the following EXCELLENT article from the WSJ:

A Reporter's Fate - The BBC held hostage in Gaza.

BY BRET STEPHENS Tuesday, May 22, 2007 12:01 a.m. EDT

Dozens of hostages were released in Gaza over the weekend, in the wake of a truce called between the warring factions of Hamas and Fatah. The BBC's Alan Johnston, now in his 11th week of captivity, was not among them.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

20 Rabbis Arrested in NYC

Must Read

Sharpton the Bigot ...

Today's Hannity show, in which he 'debated' Al Sharpton, was just wonderful. How I have longed to hear someone, particularly a Democrat (which I was once-- in a previous existence) to acknowlege Al's "colorful" past. Unfortunately, the Democrats don't. Kudos to Hannity for what he did! Imagine a hypocrite and racist chewing out others for their racism. It is enough to make one spit!

This article from Jeff Jacoby 2003 puts it clearly. Bolds mine.

Al Sharpton: The Democrat's David Duke
by Jeff Jacoby (February 26, 2003)

Among the earliest and clearest voices to condemn Trent Lott's benighted remarks last month were those of conservatives and Republicans, who were repelled by his nostalgia for segregation and quick to call for his ouster. When will liberals and Democrats show the same maturity and forcefully repudiate the noxious racial lout in their own tent, New York demagogue Al Sharpton?

And when will the media, which aggressively mined Lott's racial history and prominently reported the results, show a similar interest in digging into Sharpton's record -- a record far more shameful and egregious than anything Lott has to answer for.

This is a subject of more than idle interest. Al Sharpton says he is running for president. He has no hope of landing the White House, the Democratic nomination, or more than a handful of convention delegates, but that won't stop him from getting plenty of ink and air time. And maybe it shouldn't; presidential campaigns have often been enlivened and even enlightened by candidates who had no more chance of winning the presidency than they did of winning the Preakness.

But it is impossible to imagine, say, David Duke running for president as a Republican and not being shunned by every leading figure in the party. Impossible to imagine his campaign appearances being covered in news accounts that made no mention of his history in the Ku Klux Klan and his links to neo-Nazis. Impossible to imagine that he would be treated as just another candidate, albeit one with a "controversial" past. No one would roll over for Duke. Why are they rolling over for Sharpton?

After all, Sharpton's résumé is at least as vile as Duke's.

1987: Sharpton spreads the incendiary Tawana Brawley hoax, insisting heatedly that a 15-year-old black girl was abducted, raped, and smeared with feces by a group of white men. He singles out Steve Pagones, a young prosecutor. Pagones is wholly innocent -- the crime never occurred -- but Sharpton taunts him: "If we're lying, sue us, so we can . . . prove you did it." Pagones does sue, and eventually wins a $345,000 verdict for defamation. To this day, Sharpton refuses to recant his unspeakable slander or to apologize for his role in the odious affair.

1991: A Hasidic Jewish driver in Brooklyn's Crown Heights section accidentally kills Gavin Cato, a 7-year-old black child, and antisemitic riots erupt. Sharpton races to pour gasoline on the fire. At Gavin's funeral he rails against the "diamond merchants" -- code for Jews -- with "the blood of innocent babies" on their hands. He mobilizes hundreds of demonstrators to march through the Jewish neighborhood, chanting, "No justice, no peace." A rabbinical student, Yankel Rosenbaum, is surrounded by a mob shouting "Kill the Jews!" and stabbed to death.

1995: When the United House of Prayer, a large black landlord in Harlem, raises the rent on Freddy's Fashion Mart, Freddy's white Jewish owner is forced to raise the rent on his subtenant, a black-owned music store. A landlord-tenant dispute ensues; Sharpton uses it to incite racial hatred. "We will not stand by," he warns malignantly, "and allow them to move this brother so that some white interloper can expand his business." Sharpton's National Action Network sets up picket lines; customers going into Freddy's are spat on and cursed as "traitors" and "Uncle Toms." Some protesters shout, "Burn down the Jew store!" and simulate striking a match. "We're going to see that this cracker suffers," says Sharpton's colleague Morris Powell. On Dec. 8, one of the protesters bursts into Freddy's, shoots four employees point-blank, then sets the store on fire. Seven employees die in the inferno.

If Sharpton were a white skinhead, he would be a political leper, spurned everywhere but the fringe. But far from being spurned, he is shown much deference. Democrats embrace him. Politicians court him. And journalists report on his comings and goings while politely sidestepping his career as a hatemongering racial hustler.

When Sharpton came to Boston to promote his campaign last week, for example, the news coverage was uniformly upbeat. The Boston Herald noted the "joyous singing and thunderous applause" that greeted the "civil rights leader," whose "energetic visit left many enthusiastic about his presidential bid." The Globe announced the arrival of "the colorful and controversial 48-year-old community activist" with a story listing the places and times of his public appearances. The only allusion to his ugly record was a vague quote from a local minister: "He obviously has a lot of history and controversy to overcome." That was quickly countered by Sharpton's own self-description as a man known "for my fights against racial profiling and discrimination."

Well, that isn't what Steve Pagones or the family of Yankel Rosenbaum or the loved ones of those who were burned alive at Freddy's Fashion Mart know him for. As they can testify, Sharpton is a vicious liar and a dangerous bigot. As a matter of moral hygiene, his party and the press should be able to say so, too.

Monday, April 09, 2007

American Thinker has a terrific article on UNRWA by Moshe Dan, informative and super clear.

More than 400,000 "Palestinian refugees" living in UNWRA-supported "camps" in Lebanon cannot work or even go to school outside their designated areas. Ditto for Syria.

Most "Palestinian refugees" listed by UNRWA (which includes Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, West Bank and Gaza) in 2002, don't even live in the camps, but in nearby villages and towns. All receive free assistance and services for the rest of their life, including their children, their grandchildren, and great-grandchildren, ad infinitum.

According to UNRWA's rules, anyone who applied for relief, claiming they lived in Palestine for at least two years prior to 1948 (when Israel was attacked) and claimed to have lost property and livelihood was entitled to assistance, regardless of where they came from, or where they live today. Once a "Palestinian refugee," always a "Palestinian refugee."


With multiple wives, families can comprise scores of children - all "refugees." And, according to UNRWA rules, even if one parent is "Palestinian," the entire family is eligible for assistance and "refugee" status.

UNRWA openly admits that they don't monitor programs that support terrorism, or payments to families of terrorists by the Palestinian Authority, Hamas, Hezb'allah and (until recently) Iraq's Saddam Hussein. In fact, nearly all teachers employed by UNRWA are members of terrorist-controlled unions. Funding these teachers and the curriculum of hatred and bigotry, supports terrorism and terrorist organizations. This may explain why so many children are willing to blow themselves up, carry weapons and explosives and place themselves as shields for terrorists.

UNRWA violates its own UN mandate (Resolution 302), which states (Paragraph 5): "constructive measures should be undertaken at an early date with a view to the termination of international assistance for relief."

That's what many of us have been saying for a long long long time!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

HRW announces Middle East vacancies

This from NGO-Monitor:

Human Rights Watch announces Middle East vacancies Human Rights Watch is advertising for a Legal Director to head its International Legal and Policy Office. The job description involves “advancing the development of international human rights and humanitarian law through progressive interpretation and standard-setting. ”

HRW is also seeking a researcher on Israel, the West Bank and Gaza. The advert stresses that candidates must be “able to dispassionately investigate and report on abuses by both Israeli and Palestinian forces without prejudice or favor and despite the intense pressure for partisanship or solidarity that suffuses work on Israeli-Palestinian issues.” The job description requires “excellent skills speaking and reading in both English and Arabic,” but “proficiency in Hebrew is [only] very desirable”.

Given HRW's history of selecting candidates with strong anti-Israel bias, NGO Monitor will closely scrutinize this selection process.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

NGO Monitor Eviscerates Human Rights Watch Ken Roth

Analysis of Ken Roths Defense of HRWs Policy on Israel

March 15, 2007

On December 10, 2006, Ken Roth, Executive Director of Human Rights Watch (HRW), spoke at a conference sponsored by the North American branch of Rabbis for Human Rights. <1> Roth's presentation consisted of a defense of HRW's credibility and agenda, particularly with respect to Israel, following criticism published by NGO Monitor and elsewhere. On March 3, 2007, Tikkun magazine printed an edited version of his comments.

The following is an analysis of Roth's claims, including numerous inconsistencies, distortions, and omissions:

1) On the criticism of HRW for failing to distinguish between aggressor (as in the case of Hezbollah in the 2006 war) and defender (Israel), Roth attempts to use international legal claims, acknowledging that "a source of frustration for some people is that the Geneva Conventions do not take sides. They are neutral about the purposes of a war, they do not identify who the defender is and who the aggressor is, they do not say who's right and who's wrong, they look simply at how the war is fought . . . We look at jus in bello, the way the war is fought, not jus ad bellum, whether it was right or just to go to war."

NGO Monitor's Analysis: This portrayal of international law is selective, incomplete, and self-serving. Under international law, the only legitimate uses of force are for purposes of self-defense or pursuant to Security Council authorization under Chapter VII of the UN Charter. Article 51 of the UN Charter, for instance, states: "Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of individual or collective self-defense if an armed attack occurs against a Member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has taken measures necessary to maintain international peace and security." Under Article 2(4) of the Charter, states are prohibited from engaging in illegitimate use of force: "All members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations." As international law precedents make clear, militias like Hezbollah, given de facto authority by the government of Lebanon, are bound to follow the legal commitments of the state. Lebanon is a signatory of the UN Charter, and Hezbollah, whose officials are also members of the cabinet, is obligated to abide by Article 2(4) of the UN Charter. Therefore, Hezbollah?s attack on Israel was illegal under any interpretation of international law, and there is both a moral and legal basis for distinguishing between aggressor and defender under the laws of war. HRW and Roth selectively chose to ignore these aspects in promoting their political agenda.

2) Responding to the criticism of HRW's credibility ("fact finding), Roth stated that "after a researcher returns from an investigation and writes up a report it must go through a series of experts: legal experts, policy experts, and people who double-check the fact-finding."

NGO Monitor's Analysis: Roth's general response does not attempt to explain the numerous examples of HRW statements that were false or based on unverifiable sources. For example, on August 1, during the Israel-Hezbollah war, after an Israeli strike against Qana in southern Lebanon, HRW immediately issued a press release based entirely on unverifiable "eyewitness claims," labeling the bombing indiscriminate and a war crime before any such determination could be reasonably made, and declaring that at least 54 civilians have been killed. The number of Lebanese killed was reduced subsequently and there are conflicting reports on many of the details. HRW, while belatedly revising the casualty estimate to half, did not remove the original statement from its website and repeated the allegations of war crimes and the absence of Hezbollah elements (rockets, fighters, etc.), based on claims made by people possibly connected to Hezbollah. Indeed, on December 5, the Center for Special Studies in Israel (C.S.S.) issued a detailed report on "the extensive military infrastructure positioned and hidden by Hezbollah in populated areas." The report documented a significant Hezbollah presence in and around Qana: 3 rockets were fired from within civilian houses, 36 within a 200 meter radius, and 106 within a 500 meter radius of the village.<2> The report also showed an aerial photograph of a weapons storehouse located next to a mosque in Qana. <3> Roth ignores these facts, and enormous impact of such false reports. And as a study published by Harvard University notes, Most reporters used the higher of the two estimates, some describing the scene as a massacre. It made for more sensational copy. <4>

3) Roth claims that HRW interviews witnesses and victims of human rights abuses with "an enormous dose of skepticism" because of their tendency to lie.

NGO Monitor's Analysis: In contrast to Roth's claim, HRW's statements demonstrate that the organization routinely uses such witnesses without any evidence of "skepticism". During the Israel-Hezbollah war, for example, HRW repeatedly relied on "eyewitnesses" from south Lebanon, where Hezbollah is politically and ideologically dominant. In a July 31 op-ed published in The Guardian (UK), Peter Bouckaert, HRW's Emergencies Director, dismissed Israel's statement that Hezbollah used human shields based on testimony from villagers, labeling the IDF's assertion a convenient excuse. In HRW's August 3 report entitled Fatal Strikes: Israel's Indiscriminate Attacks Against Civilians in Lebanon, Hashem Kazan, an HRW witness interviewed regarding a July 15 attack on Bint Jbeil, claimed that there was no fighting taking place in the village--there was no one but civilians. In contrast, the CSS report included an aerial photograph of 20 bases and 5 weapons storehouses in the village <5> , also documenting 87 rockets fired from within village houses, 109 from within a 200 meter radius, and 136 within a 500 meter radius. <6>

Furthermore, when credible evidence is available, HRW often ignores it if it does not support the dominant political position. On May 27, 2006 in a television interview, Hassan Nasaralah boasted ‘[Hezbollah fighters] live in their houses, in their schools, in their churches, in their fields, in their farms and in their factories...You can't destroy them in the same way you would destroy an army. <7>

4) Roth acknowledges HRW's close relationships with local organizations, and that since "some are more reliable than others," they need to be treated with skepticism.

NGO Monitor's Analysis: HRW often relies on highly politicized Palestinian NGOs, and the resulting reports show no evidence of skepticism. For example, on June 9, eight Palestinians were killed on a Gaza beach in disputed circumstances. Amnesty International and several Palestinian NGOs, including Miftah, Al Mezan and the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights issued condemnations of Israel in the days following. On the basis of this concerted campaign, including clearly staged video, HRW dispatched Marc Garlasco, who claims to be a former Pentagon battle damage expert, to investigate. In a widely publicized press conference in Gaza. Garlasco repeated the claims that the evidence overwhelmingly supports the allegations that the civilians were killed by artillery shells fired by the IDF accepting the Palestinian position. He simply ignored the detailed evidence to the contrary, including shrapnel removed from the victims taken to Israel for treatment. (Garlasco was also among the authors of HRW's "Razing Rafah" report of 2004, which contained many unverifiable and disputed claims, and erased the context of terror.)

5) Roth stated that "while there were serious problems," HRW "put to rest" the international allegation of an Israeli "massacre" in Jenin.

NGO Monitor's Analysis: The record shows that HRW was disproportionately critical of Israel in its reporting on the events in Jenin, and its statements on the massacre myth were late and incomplete. In May 2002, HRW published a statement headlined "Jenin War Crimes Investigation Needed" followed by a detailed report entitled Jenin: IDF Military Operations, which alleged that "Israeli forces committed serious violations of international humanitarian law, some amounting prima facie to war crimes" adding that "particularly in the Hawashin district, the destruction extended well beyond any conceivable purpose of gaining access to fighters." The report was based on anecdotal and unsubstantiated testimony from what HRW described as "first-hand observers", and erased the context of mass terror attacks on Israelis. <8> Both documents remain on the HRW website. Furthermore, HRW's major report on Palestinian terror, Erased in a Moment: Suicide Bombing attacks against Israeli Civilians -- not published until October 2002, did not, as Roth claims, reveal "who at the top was responsible for ordering these murders." Instead, HRW's report vindicated Yasser Arafat, ignoring the documentary evidence of the PLO leader's direct involvement in terror.

6) Roth continues to claim that "most civilians died because, after Israel issued warnings for civilians to flee, the IDF falsely assumed that all civilians had in fact fled," adding that "Israel was firing at virtually anyone who moved."

NGO Monitor's Analysis: As noted, the CSS report showed that contrary to HRW's claim to have found "no cases" of human shields, Hezbollah used human shields throughout Lebanon, deliberately endangering civilians. On December 28, 2006, NGO Monitor published a detailed comparison of HRW's claims and the CSS report, revealing that in numerous instances, HRW relied on "eyewitness testimony" that was inconsistent with the available videographic and documentary evidence.

7) Roth chastises others for their "name-calling" adding that it "dishonored the Jewish Tradition".

NGO Monitor's Analysis: In a July 31 letter published in The New York Sun, Roth used the term an eye for an eye, which he termed to be based on "the morality of some more primitive moment." The comment is a fundamental distortion of Jewish tradition, for which Roth has yet to apologize.

8 ) Omissions: Roth's defense omits reference to positions and political campaigns based on extremely bad judgment.

NGO Monitor's Analysis: For example, in 2006, Roth condemned the US and Israel for demanding more changes to the framework for the new UN Human Rights Council, which replaced the discredited UN Commission on Human Rights. He asserted that "The proposed Council has many new elements that will be useful in our work for the promotion and protection of human rights". <9> In fact, the Council is no better than the old Commission, and the objections were well founded.


1. On January 23, The Jerusalem Post reported that RHRI (Rabbis for Human Rights Israel) had criticized the highly politicized approach of the North American branch of this organization, particularly the decision to honor the Center for Constitutional Rights, which had sued two Israeli security officials for alleged war crimes.
2. Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center, Center for Special Studies, "Hezbollah's use of Lebanese civilians as human shields" Appendix 4, 5 December 2006, at 256 (
3. Id., Part 1, at 44, Part 2, at 122.
4. Marvin Kalb and Carol Saivetz, "The Israeli-Hezbollah War of 2006: The Media As A Weapon in Asymmetrical Conflict", Research Paper Series, Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, February 2007$File/rwp_07_012_kalb.pdf
5. Id., Part 2, at 76.
6. Id., Appendix 4, at 256.
7. Staff Editorial, Whose War Crimes? The Wall Street Journal, December 11, 2006
8. On July 30, 2002, the UN issued a report on the Israeli incursion into Jenin, concluding that no massacre had taken place. In HRW's August 2 criticism of the report, Hanny Magelly, HRW's Executive Director of Middle East and North Africa Division at the time, declared that the report "exposes the risk of compiling a report without first-hand information."
9. "U.S.: Accept Draft Resolution on Human Rights Council as It Is", February 24, 2006

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Great Software

BBCode to HTML Converter

"This program will convert BBCode (Bulletin Board Code) to HTML. It's useful if you work on forums which support either BBCode or HTML and need to convert your "canned speeches" or if you have written something in bbcode that you would like to put on your website. You could also use it to preview your posts on boards that don't have that feature built in."

I have used it and it is simple and works. There is no spyware or anything bad associated with it. It is free. and can be found here.

Treatment of the Jews by the Arabs in the 10th Century

Little did he know that Hitler was coming, but I guess he might have predicted the situation in the middle east today. Here is more from the Netanyahu book I have finally got around to reading. It is so simple, so straightforward, such an honest book. Anyway, I had to add this quote from Moses Maimonides.

Later in the same century (the 10th), the philosopher Moses Maimonides declared that the return to Israel was the only hope of an end to Jewish suffering at the hands of the Arabs, of whom he writes that "Never did a nation molest, degrade, debase, and hate us as much as they." *

Benjamin Netanyahu, A Durable Peace , Israel and Its Place Among the Nations, pg 35

"*Maimonides' "Epistle to Yemen" in Isadore Twersky, A Maimonides Reader (New York: Berhman House, 1972), pp.456-57

Churchillian Quotes on Jews and Arabs

A couple of quotes from Churchill that did not hit the cutting room floor:

"The Jews are in Palestine by right, not by sufferance."

In 1921 he wrote:
    It is manifestly right that the scattered Jews should have a national centre, and a national home to be re-united, and where else but in Palestine, with which for three thousand years they have been intimately and profoundly associated? We think it will be good for the world, good for the Jews, good for the British Empire, but also good for the Arabs who dwell in Palestine...they shall share in the benefits and progress of Zionism.
    I am told the Arabs would have done it for themselves. Who is going to believe that? Left to themselves, the Arabs of Palestine would not in a thousand years have taken effective steps toward the irrigation and electrification of Palestine. They would have been quite content to dwell--a handful of philosophic people-- in the sun-scorched plains, letting the waters of the Jordan contine to flow unbridled and unharnessed into the Dead Sea.

also from Netanyahu, A Durable Peace

Arab on Arab Violence

How about the slaughter in Hama, Syria, in 1982 when an estimated 10000-20000 civilians were murdered by their brethren? Or in 1933 when the Iraqis massacred the ancient Assyrian Christian population and incited the Arab population to murder and plunder the survivors? Thousands fled the country. Or Dec 15, 1945 when the Kurds of Iraq declared an independent country and in 1961 when tens of thousands of Kurds were killed and 200,000 left homeless? That was the work of your Arab brethren. in the 1970's Saddam drove another 200,000 out into Iran. Syria massacred its Christian population in the 1920's and drove out tens of thousands of Armenians after WWII. The Druse have suffered a similar fate in Syria. Egypt under Nassar expelled its Greek Christian community in the 1950's and encouraged violence against them for years after. Sudan's Arab government has waged campaign after campaign gainst the Christian blacks in the South. Nassar used gas in Yemen in the 1960's, Saddam repeatedly gassed both the Iranian army and the Kurdish civilians in his own country in which thousands of Kurds died. The Egyptian invasion of Yemen resulted in 250,000 dead, the Algerian civil war, 1,000,000 dead, the Lebanese civil war - 15,000, the Libyan incursion into Chad - 100,000, the Sudanese civil war (at least 500,000) and the Iran-Iraq war -over 1,000,000 dead.

Loosely quoted from Benjamin Netanyahu A Durable Peace

Friday, March 02, 2007

Qur'an Quotes from R Spencer's New Book

The Truth About Muhammad

My notes:

Mo is "an excellent model of conduct" Q 33:21, "an exalted standard of character 68:4
"he who obeys the Messenger, obeys Allah 4:80
Obey Mo : 3:32,3:132,4:13,4:59,4:69,5:92,8:1,8:20, 8:46,9:71, 24:47,24:51, 24:52, 24:54, 24:56, 33:33, 47:33, 49:14, 58:13, 64:12

Death to Blasphemers:
Theo Van Gogh 2004
Iranian Lawyer Ahmad Kasravi 1947
Iranian PM Haji-Ali Razmara assassinated 1951
Egyptian writer Faraj Foda apostasy
1992Egyptian novelist Naguib Mahfouz stabbed 1994 Salman Rusdie

hadith, qur'an and sira (bio)= sunnah

Against the Jews, 5:64 5:82 9:30
Muslims are superior 3:110
arabic is 'pure and clear' 16:103
4 witnesses: if they cannot produce witnesses they verily are liars in the sight of Allah: 24:11-20
women's testimony: 2:282
punishments for mo's enemies: 111:1-5,21:11-15
Jihad for Islam 2:193 "Fight them so there will be no more seduction and the religion is God's"
Satanic Verses 17:73-75

The pact with the Jews of Medina, the Jews of Banu Auf
The Hypocrites (munafiqin) of Medina were Muslims who had conveted out of fear and convenience.

Mo attacks the hypocrites 2:8-15 63:1-8
Use of 'martyrdom' as one who kills and is killed for God...9:111
killing during the Holy months 2:214
Pickthal's Quran Translation of 2:216.

Warfare is ordained for you, though it is hateful unto you; but it may happen that ye hate a thing which is good for you, and it may happen that ye love a thing which is bad for you. Allah knoweth, ye know not. Y S C 2:217.

They question thee (O Muhammad) with regard to warfare in the sacred month. Say: Warfare therein is a great (transgression), but to turn (men) from the way of Allah, and to disbelieve in Him and in the Inviolable Place of Worship, and to expel His people thence, is a greater with Allah; for persecution is worse than killing. And they will not cease from fighting against you till they have made you renegades from your religion, if they can. And whoso becometh a renegade and dieth in his disbelief: such are they whose works have fallen both in the world and the Hereafter. Such are rightful owners of the Fire: they will abide therein. Y S C

2:218. Lo! those who believe, and those who emigrate (to escape the persecution) and strive in the way of Allah, these have hope of Allah's mercy. Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.

No compulsion in Religion: 2:256
Curse of Allah on disbelievers: 2:89
changes the direction of prayer: 2:143-144 turn their backs on Jerusalem
fighting is good 47:20
Smite at their necks 47:4, 8:9,12-13,47: 4.

Now when ye meet in battle those who disbelieve, then it is smiting of the necks until, when ye have routed them, then making fast of bonds; and afterward either grace or ransom till the war lay down its burdens. That (is the ordinance). And if Allah willed He could have punished them (without you) but (thus it is ordained) that He may try some of you by means of others. And those who are slain in the way of Allah, He rendereth not their actions vain. Y S C

8:12. When thy Lord inspired the angels, (saying): I am with you. So make those who believe stand firm. I will throw fear into the hearts of those who disbelieve. Then smite the necks and smite of them each finger. Y S C

8:13. That is because they opposed Allah and His messenger. Whoso opposeth Allah and His messenger, (for him) lo! Allah is severe in punishment. Y S 8:14. That (is the award), so taste it, and (know) that for disbelieve

8:12. Remember thy Lord inspired the angels (with the message): "I am with you: give firmness to the Believers: I will instil terror into the hearts of the Unbelievers: smite ye above their necks and smite all their finger-tips off them." S P C Yusuf Ali's Quran Translation

Unbelievers will be routed by Allah:

8:64. O Prophet! sufficient unto thee is Allah,- (unto thee) and unto those who follow thee among the Believers. S P C
8:65. O Prophet! rouse the Believers to the fight. If there are twenty amongst you, patient and persevering, they will vanquish two hundred: if a hundred, they will vanquish a thousand of the Unbelievers: for these are a people without understanding. S P C

Yusuf Ali's Quran Translation

strike terror in the heart of the enemy: 8:60

unbelievers bad treatment:

3:10. Those who reject Faith,- neither their possessions nor their (numerous) progeny will avail them aught against Allah: They are themselves but fuel for the Fire. S P
3:11. (Their plight will be) no better than that of the people of Pharaoh, and their predecessors: They denied our Signs, and Allah called them to account for their sins. For Allah is strict in punishment. S P C 3:12. Say to those who reject Faith: "Soon will ye be vanquished and gathered together to Hell,-an evil bed indeed (to lie on)! Yusuf Ali's Quran Translation

Take not Jews or Christians for friends: 5:51, 5:52

5:51. O ye who believe! take not the Jews and the Christians for your friends and protectors: They are but friends and protectors to each other. And he amongst you that turns to them (for friendship) is of them. Verily Allah guideth not a people unjust. S P

Yusuf Ali's Quran Translation

2:26. Allah disdains not to use the similitude of things, lowest as well as highest. Those who believe know that it is truth from their Lord; but those who reject Faith say: "What means Allah by this similitude?" By it He causes many to stray, and many He leads into the right path; but He causes not to stray, except those who forsake (the path),- S

2:27. Those who break Allah's Covenant after it is ratified, and who sunder what Allah Has ordered to be joined, and do mischief on earth: These cause loss (only) to themselves.
Yusuf Ali's Quran Translation

reject friendship with others 3:149-151
send terror to Jews: 5911-17
divine terror to Jews (Banu Nadir) 59:2-3
christians and jews are idolartors 4:51-52
hypocrites plotting against Muslims 33:13-14
sabbath breaking Jews are pigs and monkeys: 2:62-65,559-60,7:166
imitate Mohammed: 33:21
Massacre of the Banu Qurayzah
prayers not helpful for the evil-doer: 9:809:84

Caliphate of Umar 634-644 the Jews who remained at Khaybar were banished to Syria and the rest of the land was seized.

hate until everyone believes in Islam: 60:1-4

60: 3. Your ties of kindred and your children will avail you naught upon the Day of Resurrection. He will part you. Allah is Seer of what ye do. Y S C
60: 4. There is a goodly pattern for you in Abraham and those with him, when they told their folk: Lo! we are guiltless of you and all that ye worship beside Allah. We have done with you. And there hath arisen between us and you hostility and hate for ever until ye believe in Allah only - save that which Abraham promised his father (when he said): I will ask forgiveness for thee, though I own nothing for thee from Allah - Our Lord! In Thee we put our trust, and unto Thee we turn repentant, and unto Thee is the journeying. YPickthal's Quran Translation

allah punishes the unbelievers 9:26
invite to Islam 3:64
jizya and subordinate dhimmi (guilty or protected) position 9:29, 9:33
allah first: 9:33
Jews and Christians cursed: 9:30 Christians, esp hellfire 9:31-2,33-5
Allah curses other Moslems who ignore Mo: 9:107
Those that refuse Jihad will face terrible punishment 9:107
Jihad the best thing you can do 9:41
Those who refuse Jihad aren't believers 9:44-45
Beduins are the worst 9:97
Hypocrits will get nasty punishment 9:73-4
Kill or be killed for Allah 9:111
Beat your wife: 4:34
Unbelievers get out of Arabia 9:1-3 or die 9:4-6
Only conversion to Islam will save you from death 9:6-11
terror in the hearts of unbelievers 3:151, 7:4-5,8:12,8:60 etc
marriage ok with non menstruating children 65:4
woman are a field for men to plow: 2:223
woman's testimony 2:282
marry 4 have sex with many 4:3
woman's inheritance half of a man's 4:11
a rebellious woman can be banished and beaten 4:34
an adulterous woman can be confined to their homes until death 4:15
amputation for theft 5:38
ibn ishaq reports that mo particapted in 27 battles
The religion before allah is Islam 3:19 The only true faith in God's sight is Islam
People of the book are wrongdoers: 3:110
Jews and Christians accursed 5:12-16
Don't take Christians as friends 5:51
Jews and Christians are intolerant 2:120; cf 2:135

imitation of mohamed
march 28, 2003 Pal Sheikh Muhammad Abu A- Hunud
sept 5 2003 Sheikh Ibrahim Mudeiris on the Battle of Tabuk

jews are liars: 3:17,4:46
Jews are cursed 2:61-58, 5:78-82
Jews are Pig and Apes 5:60,2:65,7:166

Pick up a free searchable Qur'an here. It does not seem to have any associated malware.