Persians, Pharisees and Phony US “Anti-Proliferation

This is a reply to Iran Slams US as ‘World’s Only Atomic Criminal’

ISRAEL: A SAFE HAVEN FOR JEWS? FORGET IT


“Israel never confirms or denies claims that it has nuclear, chemical and biological weapons. The country positions itself outside international treaties, which would make it subject to inspection. They say the costs of such secrecy to Israeli democracy are too great. Uzi Even, was a young scientist working, in the 60s, at Dimona – Israel’s nuclear reactor….Today, Mr Even says it should be shut down.

Forty-year-old reactors tend to have accidents and he believes that Dimona, which is beyond the reach of the Israeli parliament, needs to be brought into a system of accountability and public scrutiny. Mr Even explained: “You should have an outside watchdog. “The secrecy more or less created an extra- territorial area in Israel where standard procedures of safety monitoring are not implemented. “So worker safety, environmental questions and industrial safety procedures, are not covered, and there are thousands of people working there.”

ENFORCED SILENCE


Nothing illustrates this better than the sensitive issue of Dimona’s cancer victims. In an Israeli documentary in 2002, Dimona workers said accidents had been routine. They spoke of explosions, fires and liquid and toxic gas leaks that they had to clean, often without protection.

The authorities denied they had worked with radioactive materials. They have refused to compensate them or their families for their years of loyal service. Because of the strict secrecy rules they were even unable to fight for their rights. When Correspondent approached one of the workers, who was dying of cancer, he refused to be interviewed – but with some regret.

Unaware he was being filmed, he said: “I wanted to talk to you but I have been silenced.

“They came from intelligence and told me not to talk. “They said I would be like Vanunu.” Vanunu has another year in jail. When his sentence is finished he hopes to emigrate to America. But Mr Horev has clearly let it be known he never intends to let Vanunu leave Israel.”

Source: BBC

Watch the shocking and still relevant documentary:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=178254070504611595#

.. the Israel people were exposed only to the Israeli media, the Israel media brainwash, the Israel media bias against me. Not they, they were not open to see all the story and all the danger of nuclear weapons in secret in such small state, Israel.

And also that these people was not exposed to the idea that these Israel people were sending a lot of propaganda, what they call holocaust industry, to know and to understand that nuclear weapons are the real holocaust and the Jewish people have no right and no justification to use the atomic bomb.”

Excerpt from an interview with Mordechai Vanunu by David Frost

From the BBC documentary:

“Despite claims that Dimona was for peaceful purposes only, Israel’s leader Ben Gurion was summoned to Washington.  President Kennedy feared an arms race in the Middle East and demanded inspections.But when inspectors finally entered the plant in May 1961 they were tricked. They were shown a fake control room on the ground floor. They were unaware of the six floors below where the plutonium was made.

Well this was something of great pride and almost a legendary story in Dimona, according to Vanunu.  When the Americans came they were completely hoodwinked. All the entrances including the lift shafts were bricked up and plastered over so it was impossible for anyone to find their way down to the lower floors.”

AFTER KENNEDY’S ASSASSINATION THE PRESSURE ON ISRAEL WAS OFF …


His successor Lyndon Johnson turned a blind eye. Then In 1969 Israel’s Golda Meir and President Richard Nixon struck a deal, renewed by every President to this day. Israel’s nuclear programme could continue as long as it was never made public. It’s called nuclear ambiguity.”

(The reporter interviews the former Israeli Prime Minister (now President) on the subject)

BBC: The term nuclear ambiguity, in some ways it sounds very grand.  But isn’t just a euphemism for deception?

PERES: If somebody wants to kill you, and you use a deception to save your life it is not immoral.  If we wouldn’t have enemies we wouldn’t need deceptions.  We wouldn’t need deterrent.

Remember this argument next time  Obama accuses Iran of  deception, although it has not violated any  (NPT) treaty obligations so far and the IAEA inspectors  have found no evidence for weapons-grade uranium enrichment let alone the production of plutonium …

BBC: Was this the justification for concealing the floors of the plutonium reprocessing areas from the Americans, the inspectors, when they came?

PERES: You are having a dialogue with yourself, not with me.

BBC: But that’s been documented in a number of books

PERES: Ask the question to yourself, not to me.I don’t have to answer your questions even.  I don’t see any reason why.”

Imagine, Ahmadinejad talking like that …  all hell would break loose…

As some arrogant asshole from a conservative think-tank said on the eve of the Iraq war to a peace activist who was accusing USrael of unbearable hypocrisy on the topic of WMD:

“It’s not the weapons, it’s WHO has them.

The same unacceptable and self-delusional “argument” was used by Benjamin Netanyahu recently, trying to justify Israel’s  immoral, hypocriticial and dangerous refusal to sign the NPT, to say nothing of the enforced media silence on the subject of demanding accountability for Israel’s nuclear arsenal,, while harping on about the manufactured “threat” from Iran.

We are the good  (morally and racially superior) guys, our diabolical weapons and even our cruelty are necessary for a “just” cause, so we are entitled to destroy and kill indiscriminately (Arabs, of course) – that line of argument goes back  directly to the Nuremberg trials …

Even US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates acknowledged, that Iran’s alleged “secret” attempts to acquire nuclear weapons are to be viewed in the context of deterrence, not military aggression, but he was quickly admonished for his candour and “brought back” in line with the official Zionist PR-story by Senator Graham …

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC): Do you believe the Iranians are trying to acquire nuclear weapons capability?

GATES: Yes, sir, I do.

GRAHAM: The president of Iran has publicly disavowed the existence of the Holocaust, he has publicly stated that he would like to wipe Israel off the map [NO, he has NOT!]. Do you think he’s kidding?

GATES: No, I don’t think he’s kidding. And—but I think that there are, in fact, higher powers in Iran than he, than the president. And I think that while they are certainly pressing, in my opinion, for a nuclear capability, I think that they would see it in the first instance as a deterrent. They are surrounded by powers with nuclear weapons—Pakistan to their east, the Russians to the north, the Israelis to the west, and us in the Persian Gulf—

GRAHAM: Do you believe the president of Iran is lying when he says he’s not?

GATES: Yes, sir.

GRAHAM: Do you believe the Iranians would consider using that nuclear weapons capability against the nation of Israel?

GATES: I don’t know that they would do that, Senator. I think that the risks for them obviously are enormously high. I think that they see value—

GRAHAM: If I may?

GATES: Yes, sir.

GRAHAM: Can you assure the Israelis that they will not attack Israel with a nuclear weapon, if they acquire one?

GATES: No, sir, I don’t think that anybody can provide that assurance.

How effective  propaganda (now called “strategic communication”) and global “churnalism” created the global “wiped-off-the-map” hoax, was also analyzed earlier by Jonathan Steele in The Guardian:

“Ask anyone in Washington, London or Tel Aviv if they can cite any phrase uttered by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and the chances are high they will say he wants Israel “wiped off the map”.

Again it is four short words, though the distortion is worse than in the Khrushchev case. The remarks are not out of context. They are wrong, pure and simple. Ahmadinejad never said them. Farsi speakers have pointed out that he was mistranslated. The Iranian president was quoting an ancient statement by Iran’s first Islamist leader, the late Ayatollah Khomeini, that “this regime occupying Jerusalem must vanish from the page of time” just as the Shah’s regime in Iran had vanished.

He was not making a military threat. He was calling for an end to the occupation of Jerusalem at some point in the future. The “page of time” phrase suggests he did not expect it to happen soon. There was no implication that either Khomeini, when he first made the statement, or Ahmadinejad, in repeating it, felt it was imminent, or that Iran would be involved in bringing it about.”

If you want to understand what “churnalism” is all about (the media acting as as a flock of sheep or an echo-chamber …) try this video:

Back to the BBC documentary:

“The programme listed more than a hundred Dimona workers
who’d developed cancer and whose claims were being ignored
. A doctor and two lawyers backed their story. It was the first time Dimona workers had spoken out.

BBC: “I want to talk to Ariel Spieler.  He’s suffering from cancer and in the last few years he’s seen a number of his friends and colleagues who worked there with him die of the disease. He’s been fighting for compensation for their families, for their widows, and I know he’d really like to talk to us about this. He’s told me he wishes he could, but he’s also told me he’s been warned off.  He’s been told not to talk.  I’m going to go and see him and see if he’ll change his mind.”

Spieler: “The Secret Service silenced me.They’ve silenced me completely. They told me not to say one word. What can I do?  What can I do? They told me: “You’ll end up like Vanunu”.How long has he been in prison? 15 years? Do you want me to go to jail?

BBC: “I really wanted to talk. I asked the others but they refused.Nobody wants to talk… the doctors, the relatives, the lawyers. Nobody is prepared to talk about it. I just don’t get it.

If this was Iraq or North Korea I’d understand why people are so scared to talk. But this is Israel.

This is supposed to be a democracy.”

(Perception is everything…)







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NucLIAR & Flat Earth News

Congratulations! Thanks to the publication of the latest NucLiar “strategic information” piece, the Guardian is now the front-runner for the “Flat Earth News Media Award”, (category: Daft Science & Environment Editor) founded by the Edward Bernays Society for contributions to “moulding public opinon” as part of a hidden economic agenda.

In the middle of the “climate change” dilemma, wouldn’t it be a great PR-idea to sponsor an Oxford professor (pay for the publication of his ludicrous book) who claims that “nuclear dangers are overstated” in order to  generate support for the “nuclear renaissance”?  Worried about the easily detectable, systemic distortions of an incompetent “expert” and  the dangerous “dumbing down” of science? No Fear!    “They report what they are given” [cited in  “Flat Earth News”]

Excuse the irony & candour, but this is so obviously a piece of propaganda for the nuclear industry that the editor who approved it, ought to be fired at the spot: either for lack of journalistic integrity or for sheer stupidity. Here are some basic reasons why the whole story is a  PR-scam:

1) Lack of Expertise:

Allison is a particle physicist, not an expert in molecular biology, biochemistry, biophysics  &  genetics  (the  combined, overlapping knowledge necessary for radiation biology). The focus of all big questions about the effects of low doses of ionizing radiation is the cellular, molecular level not the primitive concepts of  “body dose” or “organ dose” which are based on crude physical models developed by – you guessed it – physicists.

2) Comparing apples  to oranges

Allison, as echoed in the article, makes no distinctions between different types of radiation exposure but the effects of  acute,  external, low LET ionizing radiation (gamma-rays from nuclear explosions or x-rays) cannot be simply extrapolated to estimate the health risks from nuclear installations because they result from chronic, internal, high LET ionizing radiation, especially from inhaled or ingested alpha-particles.

Also, not all radioisotopes have the same biological impact if internalized:  e.g. whether from “ hot particles”, “warm particles”, Plutonium or Uranium, the effects are different. If particles are “stuck” in tissue or sequentially decaying radionuclides like Strontium 90 (from weapons fallout) bind to DNA, the radiological and chemical toxicity cannot just be lumped together under the heading of “same dose, same risk”. Auger emitters for example, widely used for radiotherapy, create much greater damage at the cellular level than other radionuklides, i.e. x-rays:

“Even in the case of uniform distribution, some of those Auger emitters are highly radiotoxic compared to hard gamma rays. For Auger emitters to bond to radiosensitive sites in cell nucleus, much higher radiation effectiveness could be expected.”

This is another reason why the simple comparison of risk between radiotherapy exposure, X-rays, CT-scans, Sellafield and “natural background” exposure is not valid since Allison’s arguments are based on the premise that ionizing energy  is  always evenly distributed in  the body, which is demonstrably false. (More on the subject see under 4 below)

3) Nucliar AtTAC aided by “ Truth-Avoiding Coverage

Instead of inflicting on the public yet another endless debate between disagreeing scientists,  it ought to be the job of journalists to investigate who is telling the truth[1] and who is lying or serving a hidden agenda. We need an independent press to establish trust and authenticity in order  to get real insight.

As Nick Davies rightly points out, the concept of “neutrality” or “balance” must be reassessed to stop “the packaging of conflicting claims which is precisely the opposite of truth-telling”. Jha and Bosley are a perfect example of this problem: The assertions of Allison  are “balanced” by reporting what other scientists have to say, but all statements are dubious and not illuminative as long as the bigger political context is missing and even more so,  if the “background” is also a showcase for “churnalism”: “Nuclear radiation risk: The current consensus” which brings us to

4) Who the hell is the ICRP? How is “dose” calculated and what does it mean?

How is the public supposed to make an informed judgement if journalists do not bother to get a deeper understanding of a controversial subject BEFORE they write about it (or publish relevant “material”)? The aforementioned “current consensus” background by Alok Jha is another showcase for ignorant “science reporting”:

“How is radiation harmful?” ( One size fits all – Oversimplifications)

Ionising radiation … can damage the DNA in the nucleus of a cell. Unless the cell’s repair machinery can fix the breaks, or else the cell itself is killed, it has a higher chance of becoming cancerous.”

If the “editor” had bothered to do even a quick research on the subject, he would have discovered, that this is  no longer a valid assessment of risk because hundreds of studies have challenged the outdated view, that relevant biological damage occurs only if the cell nucleus is hit:

To be sure, new mechanistic possibilities must now be considered in interpreting the results of both in vitro and in vivo studies inasmuch as nuclear DNA alone no longer can be viewed as the only relevant target for the actions of IR, or even necessarily the most important target for eliciting at least some detrimental effects of IR under some exposure conditions.”[2]

“What is a safe dose?”

This is an even greater insult to any intelligent reader (and to painstaking journalism) because Jha has obviously just copied the “industry friendly information” (lacking any scientific credibility) he received from Allison. Besides, the first thing he should have done is explain  what “dose” realls means, that it is not based on scientific measurement but just a theoretical, mathematical construct:  to give an  estimate based on a physical “ model”, multiplied with another factor to give “RBE”,  which is supposed to enable the quantification of risk (the likelihood and extent of biological damage). A great source of information for all these questions is the 2004 CERRIE Report (and the surrounding controversy of political influence) which the guardian reported – why did Jha not use  these sources instead of recycling the rubbish from Allison?

It is not so hard to understand  that, whether a tiny alpha-particle is stuck in lung tissue or in the lymph nodes, etc. makes a huge difference in determining the detrimental health effects, not only because different organs have a different radiation sensitivity.  Besides, it is plainly ridiculous to calculate / extrapolate linearly from the “equivalent” (organ) dose which is in turn derived from “effective” (body) dose when effects on microscopic (incredibly tiny, i.e. millionths of a milimeter) volumes at the molecular and cellular  level  need to be examined and understood.

In addition, we also need to understand if and how different radionuclides move in the body (biokinetics). It is pretty obvious that the risk assessement for complex cellular systems  cannot be adopted from studies on external exposure to x-rays or gamma-rays, with a relatively uniform distribution of energy in the tissue. A reliable  model to estimate the combined effects of different types of radiation  has not yet been found.

But all the evidence strongly points to the conclusion that it is the concentration of ionization (its density) in a small group of cells, or even a single cell that defines “risk” at the molecular level, not the bodily dose (more a political consensus than a scientific one)  as Paul  Brown correctly reported in 2004:

The National Radiological Protection Board has always measured a tiny dose received by an individual as if it affected the entire body evenlyso the result was a dilution that appeared to do little harm. The possibility that the dose would lodge near a bone or in the brain and emit radiation inflicting localised damage leading to cancer had not been not accepted.

So all the talks about “background dose” or “safe dose” is meaningless and the absurd claims that below 100 mSv, there is no problem whatsoever and below 200 mSv DNA repair can fix everything (and other absurdities) prove that Allison is a charlatan and I bet 10.000 EUR, that if investigated properly, some connection to the nuclear industry will be found. If Jha had bothered to look at the sources Allison frequently uses, the penny would already have dropped: the US DoE, the NEI, the  NEA, the “Radiation, Science & Health Inc.” (a front group, if there ever was one) and obscure and refuted studies like “Is Chronic Radiation an effective  prophylaxis against cancer?” The man even champions the routine  irradiation of food! (see his website) Allison’s  attempt, to bring the “hormesis myth back to life is obvious, but futile.

The “lack of understanding” of how the body deals with LDIR is the result of ostracizing  independent scientists who represent a danger to the nuclear industry and its unhealthy ties to the military, the great protector of the nuclear holy grail. So any “article” dealing with risks of IR can only make sense if accompanied by “background” about the political agenda behind the “peaceful use of nuclear energy”. The Orwellian character of this charade ought to have been clear from the beginning, with the ludicrous slogan “atoms for peace” which demonstrates that exactly the opposite of Allison’s claim is true: not the “anti-nuclear” lobby created “irrational fear” but the very rational fear of ionizing radiation (a life-preserving instinct since we have no sensory receptor) was ridiculed and the immense risks and uncertainties downplayed, to foster acceptance of an insane technology that threatens all life on earth and has caused a global cancer epidemic (among other diseases).

Since the second world war, scientists have worked on the basis that there is no dose of radiation so low that it’s not dangerous.”

This is complete BS. A quick look at the historical development of the ICRP model shows that for decades the converse view was taken: Based on the extrapolations from Hiroshima, the accepted wisdom was that below a certain threshold, health risks were negligible. The “acceptable” or “permissible” (maximum) dose had to be  adjusted downward again and again as increasing scientific evidence showed that the risks were much higher than originally assumed.

You do have authentic and independent experts on radiation biology (biochemistry) in the UK: among them the courageous Dr. Chris Busby – Why is he not allowed to write in the Guardian or serve as competent advisor on the subject?

Your reports about genetic engineering are also very uncritical …  Political / economic pressure?

The ethical responsibility of the press  to inform the public about these controversial  scientific issues (affecting many generations to come)  is enormous …

Are you up to it with these “reporters” ?

( ….This  comment was sent as reply to the guardian’s “coverage” of the dangers of ionizing radiation….)

Sources:

http://www.protectnv.org/documents/FalsePromises.pdf

http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Portal:Nuclear_Issues

http://www.greenaudit.org/

http://www.umrc.net/uranium_basics.aspx

http://www.wise-uranium.org/dissbk.html

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/nuclear-waste-may-be-used-in-household-products-1269778.html

http://www.nature.com/onc/journal/v22/n45/full/1206988a.html

http://www.ratical.com/radiation/CNR/HEIRreports.html

http://www.radiation.org/reading/index.html

http://www.hpa.org.uk/webw/HPAweb&HPAwebStandard/HPAweb_C/1243928248447

http://books.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=11340

http://www.pnas.org/content/97/10/5381.full.pdf+html

http://www.pnas.org/content/100/9/5057.full.pdf+html

Beyond Treason and « Gulf War Syndrome – Killing Our Own «

<<<<to watch the BT video click on the  image

P.S.  Send Simon Jenkins to Iraq and let him see the deformed babies, the exploding cancer incidence in children, the immense suffering,  for himself. The man is a small-minded idiot: the incredibly stupid assertion that “Nobody makes money from downplaying risk (how about the nuclear industry, eh? – the evidence of a cover-up (just look at the “official” Chernobyl figures) is staring in your face) while at the same time accusing the “anti-nuclear lobby” of  exaggerating risk for personal gain must go down in the history of print as one of the darkest moments of human bias and ignorance …. because people are suffering and dying while Jenkins gets paid for his high  bollocks  turnout …  (remember Asbestos, DDT, PCBs,  – wasn’t it all “safe” ..???!!!)

Fatima, this little girl, was suffering from severe congenital malformations, is – in Jenkins universe, the result of “irrational fears about irradiation”

Tell that to her parents… (Fatima has died in the meantime, she was born with two heads ….) What can one say to express the feelings of outrage and grief?


Remember, this is the result of “Operation Iraqi Freedom” …..

[1] IFJ: “Respect for Truth and for the right of the public to truth is the first duty of the journalist”      Is it in reality?

[2] i.e. Radiation-induced effects in unirradiated cells: A review and implications in cancer, 2002

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The Evil of Banality: Kopenhagen Climate Summit

“Since I gave up hope, I’ve felt a lot better.”

(Woody Allen)

The Great Global Sale .....

This is a reply to a recent article in The Guardian:  “Kopenhagen  Climate Change talks must fail says top scientist”

Hansen is right, of course. All these big climate conferences lead to nowhere because the political “leaders” who attend them, have not even begun to understand the REAL problem. The central problem is not the emission of greenhouse gases (they are just a symptom) but the quasi- religious doctrine of “market-rule, economic growth and global competition” (which is basically a race to the bottom).

Industrial production is embedded in the natural production cycle but the economic “experts” chose to ignore the ecological imperatives which ensure the stability and functioning of ecosystems.

These ecosystems are the basis of our lives, their services are indispensable and invaluable and although most idigenous people did not know what “ecosystems” are, they had a natural reverence for all forms of life because they experienced themselves as part of nature, not her conqueror. This is also evident in the language i.e. the indigenous people of Latin America call the earth “pacha mama” and of course the ancient forms of religion are also rooted in this attitude (i.e. the worshipping of a (soil) fertility goddess like Demeter in ancient Greece).

But economic “progress” and “enlightenment” changed all that completely: “Mother Earth” became a huge, untapped reservoir of natural “resources” waiting to be exploited by the industrial revolution and today, only a hundred years later, literally everything, every living being (even their genes) has been turned into a “commodity” to be bought, patented and sold – or rather to be sacrificed on the altar of the omnipotent “market” whose “forces” are now ruling over us, no matter how devastating they are (see the latest “financial crisis” and the  massive growth of  global poverty and inequality).

The only thing that counts is: everything has to be “profitable”, the GATS and the WTO treaties have created a legal obligation for governments to obey the overriding principle of our society:  “investors’ interests” – this means in practice the predominance of  property rights (and an invented “right” to  profit with full externalisation of environmental and social costs to society) for an economic elite over human rights for all ….

Funny, most people think about political rights  in the context of Human Rights but never about economic or social rights. In fact, today we have no say in determining economic policies, the right to vote for a political party does not really entail this power (it is an illusion, because practically all parties have now accepted market-rule, to say nothing of the EU …). We can only choose the lesser of two or three  evils ….

All natural systems have a self-limiting principle i.e. the growth of cells is controlled by genes (which react to environmental changes) and therefore all living organisms cannot grow indefinitely. Infinite economic growth (which is of course exponential) is complete madness and can only be compared to a cancer cell: at first glance, it seems to have the “competitive advantage” over normal cells because it can grow fast and soon “beats” the normal cells in the competition for blood supply, etc. But in the end of course, it kills the host organism. So the “unregulated”, unhindered growth ends in a castastrophe.

The socially devastating results of unhindered (artificial) growth in the  ongoing global Ponzi scheme that passes for “finance and investment” should have been the final proof that our economic system is totally insane and that we  must no longer accept the “rule of the market” or the absurd notion that “business” thrives best when all moral constraints have been removed. We do not live to serve “the economy”, the economy must be embedded in (a humane) society, not the other way round. When price and value do no longer correspond, something is very wrong  ( … when a ton of gravel sells for more than a ton of wheat…)

When we accept that a Wall Street trader makes (“earns” is not applicable here) more than a thousand dollars PER HOUR (for organized fraud and selling AAA rated “toilet paper”) but a firefighter, a nurse, a policeman, a farmer, a teacher, etc. (whose services are badly needed) has to put up with a steadily declining income and in the end, many even lose their homes as a result of predatory lending, we have turned democracy into a farce and a fraud which resembles more and more a plutocracy.

In the 18th century, our forefathers fought against a rich aristocracy who extracted their wealth from the exploited, powerless masses and paid no taxes. “No taxation without representation” – wasn’t that the battle cry in 1776?

It seem to me  we are approaching similiar circumstances today – a refeudalisation of society is taking place. We are paying for insane wars and insane economic doctrines while the new aristocracy controls the “government” whose only function is to assist them in increasing their power and wealth so that they can accelerate the destruction of our environment and the last remnants of  ideas about social justice.

The special role of the unspeakable PR-industry in this charade should be dissected in the public debate but it is mostly ignored (see also the  surreal Kafkaesque rhetoric of the “Middle East Peace Process” or the “War on Terror”-Scam )

The crazy notion, that this perverse system can go on with just a little “cap and trade” on the side (which is just another Ponzi scheme from Wall Street) and miraculously, carbondioxide-levels will go down within a decade or so, clearly shows how stupid and  hypocritical our leaders are.

As long as the economy must keep “growing” (to pay the interest on the astronomical debt the banks have created – see also the ZEITGEIST Addendum videos on YouTube) and the enormous value of intact (“undeveloped”) ecosystems is ignored, nothing will change for the better. As long as the likes of Goldman-Sachs and ExxonMobil rule the world, we are doomed.

What is necessary is a huge paradigm shift in economic thinking. The “theoclassical economic theory” has one big problem: it is  just a theory and does not work in the real world. Alan Greenspan called this ” a flaw in his model” when he testified before a congressional committee, investigating his role as chief of the Federal Reserve in the financial “meltdown”.  To cling to the absurd idea that markets are “rational”, because their behaviour is driven by insatiable greed for profit (which Greenspan obviously considers “normal” &  & rational” for the “homo oeconomicus” in the form of the modern “investor”) shows, how blind these people are to anything outside their economic ideology.

Perhaps the biggest problem is, that we have been duped into accepting the  immoral and insane as “normal” (rational) and inevitable behaviour: How can anyone accept the fact that trillions (in the form of debt created by and for the banks)  are spent for corporate crooks, Ponzi schemes  and military aggression but that “there is no money” for health care and other badly needed social programs?

I cannot help thinking that the absolutist kings in France were sent to the guillotine for lesser crimes …. The looting of public wealth by a (monetary) aristocracy is bad enough, the (shrugged-off) consequence of  poverty and hunger even worse, but destroying the natural basis of our lives, the fertility of the soil,  the wonderful biodiversity of this lonely, blue planet and the dynamic equilibrium that has held a complex system of  thousands of eco-subsystems together is the ultimate crime … In the end it amounts to a form of collective suicide (in slow-motion) so “climate change” is a totally unsuitable euphemism to initiate real change in production or consumption patterns …. (which the political-economic elite do not want, of course)

So, coming back to Kopenhagen:

As Einstein said “You cannot solve a problem with the same way of thinking that created the problem in the first place…”

As long as the media repeats these meaningless phrases about “reduction of greenhouse gases (and even that simplification has been further reduced to CO²)” without explaining the bigger context (the whole economic paradigm must be changed fundamentally), nothing will change. A global order, based on brutal “competition” is expected to suddenly change shape to a “international community” in order to solve huge problems? How is this supposed to work?

Besides: Has anyone ever bothered to question how these alleged “emission-cuts” are measured? By whom?  Let alone the huge scam of “offsetting” (see the above link [‘cap and trade’] to the report “A Dangerous Obsession” by Friends of the Earth for details)

Sources:

http://www.scienceblog.com/community/older/2002/G/2002038.html

http://www.greenfacts.org/en/ecosystems/

http://www.palmerlab.umd.edu/

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“Crying and Shooting” with EU support

Separation Wall with BalloonUN ENDORSES GAZA WAR CRIMES REPORT

Given the extremely difficult circumstances, I think Judge Goldstone did a good job with his report on Operation Cast Lead. Those who accuse him of “bias” should present facts that support their allegations or keep quiet.

His findings simply confirm a long line of previous reports from Human Rights Organisations (including B’t Selem) and the revelations by groups like “Breaking the Silence” although there is one dubious premise which needs to be clarified:

I absolutely agree with Norman Finkelstein, that to refer to the massacre in Gaza as a “war” is totally unacceptable and deliberately misleading, given the huge disparity of force between Hamas militants and the IDF and the fact, that the real military  target was  the civilian  population (as the report confirmed). From the days of Ben Gurion, it was clear to all Israeli leaders that the greatest threat, the “time-bomb” for the “Jewish” state has been the significantly higher birth rate of Palestinians. So from this cynical standpoint, killing women and children indiscriminately, does make sense ….(even poisoning the survivors (their DNA) with DU, DIME and other “novel” weapons ..)

Who can be so cruel? This is a demonization of the  IDF and the political leaders of Israel you might think. Try this to grasp the moral abyss on which this state was founded:

Video: ?????????

Therefore, even though the “firing of (comparatively ridiculous) rockets” into civilian neighbourhoods may be a violation of humanitarian law in principle, the moral dimensions of Israel’s systemic violence ( i.e. the brutal occupation as such, assassinations of Hamas leaders in broad daylight (“extra-judicial killings”) which usually result in the death of many innocent bystanders, etc.) and the occasional symbolic outbursts of “revenge” through these rockets are totally different. This is also demonstrated by comparing the “fatalities” on each side: Can the killing of 1400 Palestinians be judged on the same moral basis as the death of 9 Israelis? (6 were members of security forces – Source: Bt Selem)

The hypocrisy here is in the legal groundwork: people under occupation are entitled to “resist”, to fight againt the occupier but they ought to restrict their attacks to the military. But in light of the seemingly endless horrors of the occupation, the brutal retaliations against peaceful demonstrations and rather harmless “resistance” like stone-throwing children, let alone the ongoing and intensifying violation of human rights in the form of land expropriation, evictions and the inhumane siege on Gaza, this restraint is practically impossible and would require super-human self-control.

I know I am walking on thin ice here because this kind of reasoning leads quickly  to the “argument” of  the  Israeli government: “Our violence is for a good cause, theirs is evil; we are only fighting back, they are the ones who threaten our security, etc.” Violence is always bad and I am not saying that firing rockets into civilian neighbouhoods is no big deal, but the perception Israel wants to create (that they act only in self-defense) is totally wrong as Professor Avi Shlaim also pointed out in January 2009:

“As always, mighty Israel claims to be the victim of Palestinian aggression but the sheer asymmetry of power between the two sides leaves little room for doubt as to who is the real victim.

This is indeed a conflict between David and Goliath, but the Biblical image has been inverted – a small and defenceless Palestinian David faces a heavily armed, merciless, and overbearing Israeli Goliath.

The resort to brute military force is accompanied, as always, by the shrill rhetoric of victimhood and a farrago of self-pity overlaid with self-righteousness. In Hebrew this is known as the syndrome of bokhim ve-yorim (“crying and shooting”).

Gaza-7thumbShlaim also demonstrates that the hailed “return of the Gaza strip” was just another PR-scam to present Israel (under Sharon) as striving for a peaceful solution while in fact they knew that the cruel (economic) stranglehold on Gaza combined with (little publicised, often clandestine) military aggression now and then would sooner or later lead to more “rocket firing” which could then be presented as proof for the “evil” intentions of Hamas and reinforce the recurring theme of “crying and shooting” … Shlaim goes on:

[…] Gaza, however, is not simply a case of economic underdevelopment but a uniquely cruel case of deliberate de-development. Israel turned the people of Gaza into a source of cheap labour and a captive market for Israeli goods.

The development of local industry was actively impeded so as to make it impossible for the Palestinians to end their subordination to Israel and to establish the economic underpinnings essential for real political independence.”

Numerous reports from the UN have also highlighted the dramatic situation in Gaza even before Operation Cast Lead began  (sewage systems on the brink of collapse, food scarcity, high unemployment, frequent power shortages, etc. – all the result of the isolation and siege of Gaza). And in the West Bank a smiliar strategy to destroy the economy (and hope) was used …

gaza_sewage_lakeGiven these horrific circumstances, this hopelessness, 1,4 million people being imprisoned in this small strip of land, helplessly watching how Israel steals more and more land in the West Bank and East Jeruslaem, and the “international community” does nothing to stop these crimes, it is remarkable that there have not been more outbursts of violence. No-one, not even Ghandi would have advocated civil disobedience in this scenario …

Goldstone knows perfectly well that the accurate historical context is necessary to be able to judge actions on both sides and he draws a clear picture about the events that lead to the end of Hamas initiated cease-fires. That is perhaps the main reason why Israel must prevent any detailed discussion of the report because then the whole “tapestry of lies” would fall apart ….

Besides, as far as I know, at the beginning of the intifada, the Palestinian attacks were limited to IDF soldiers but the massacre in a Hebron mosque in 1994 was the incentive for Hamas to attack also civilians inside Israel.

It is painfully clear, that Israel WANTS and NEEDS to provoke violent resistance so that it can portray its own cruelty and violence as “defense” in the context of the “war on terror” …

It is highly ironic, that the world has been duped into believing that Islam represents a threat to global security while in fact Zionism is the real threat (as political abuse of religion is has replaced Christian hypocrisy in the colonial mindset …) and is never even mentioned in this context (at least not here in Germany).

In his book Overcoming Zionism” Joel Kovel (a Jewish psychiatrist) shows the insanity of Zionism as a political instrument and the staggering hypocrisy and self-deception this has entailed: the eternal “victims” with their (self-attributed) high Jewish morality, created a state on the brutal expropriation and misery of another people. The “victims” (Zionism started long before Hitler appeared on the scene)  became racist perpetrators but in order to maintain their collective identity and exculpatory self-image,  they had to bend over backwards to put the blame somehow on the victims …. so they invented “reasons” why their criminal and inhumane actions could be justified before their conscience and before their God. This can be very well illustrated by a quote from Golda Meir:

“I will never forgive the Arabs for forcing us to kill them

Jewish souls are very special, no less than a part of God, so we have learned. Baruch Goldstein, a medical doctor, who committed the above mentioned massacre in Hebron,  refused to treat non-Jews, even in the IDF …

To return to the UN-GA resolution: I am deeply ashamed that with the exception of IRELAND, NO EU member state  has voted FOR  the resolution.

The majority of the EU-hypocrites abstained …

Considering how hard it was to fight for a Declaration of Human Rights, how many people suffered or even died to reach that goal,  I find it totally unacceptable that a “Human Rights Council” allows abstentions during a voting session.

Recently, I saw a movie called “One against the Wind” which tells the true story of a brave woman, who supported the resistance in France during the German occupation, by taking care of wounded allied soldiers and getting them out of the country. She was eventually sent to a concentration camp but survived … In one scene she tells the American ambassador in Paris (before the US entered the war): “There is a special hell for fence-sitters…” Precisely – in the context of Israel’s impunity this hell must already be heavily overcrowded …

In this insane world, where property rights, the “freedom” of capital  and “strategic interests” make a mockery of human “values” on a regular basis, we can no longer afford to “abstain”, when  the defense of these  values is called for. A supposedly universal “right” that exists only on paper, and is only defended when a certain category of people is involved, has not just lost its meaning, it has become a farce.

So when Jewish wire services report that  “He [Foreign Minister Lieberman] believes Israel’s diplomatic work on the eve of the General Assembly vote led to fitting results” and that “Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon has confirmed that there is a “silent understanding” with the US that it would not let the Security Council endorse such a resolution” – what can one say? That the whole idea of the “United Nations” and “Human Rights” has been turned into a theatre of the absurd? That the UN should replace symbolic decorations like Picasso’s “Guernica” with George Orwell’s “Some are more equal than others” (as a kind of  “mission statement” endorsed by the US) engraved in stone?

Former US ambassador to the UN,  John Bolton, a diplomat who seldom hid behind “diplomatic language”, used to call the UN “an instrument of US foreign policy and nothing else”. His point was proven in a spectacular fashion during the last “Anti-Racism Conference in Geneva, when USrael staged a brilliant PR-event to further demonize and isolate Iran because “the new Hitler” Ahmadinejad had the audacity to talk about Zionism (as a form of racism) and its links to the new forms of colonialism (better known as “globalisation”). Since then the hyped “nuclear threat” to the world, allegedly coming from Iran is the latest attempt to divert attention from the real culprits.

Of course the display of  “outrage” by the Israeli ambassador and his US-“echo” after the endorsement of the  Goldstone report on Gaza,  was yet another attempt to reframe the debate. Let the people forget the clear evidence of Israel’s guilt: If it (the government) has nothing to hide

  • Why did it prevent foreign reporters from entering Gaza?
  • Why did it refuse to cooperate with the UN fact-finding mission? (Refusing even to let Goldstone enter Gaza through Israel, so he had to enter via Egypt)
  • Why did it also treat former UN-envoys with disrespect (not to say contempt)i.e. Richard Falk?
  • Why did it even belittle and debase  the testimony from IDF soldiers ( “Breaking the Silence”)?
  • Why does it always try to get rid of justified criticism by “character assassination”? (claiming its supposedly “superior moral standing” as proof of honesty while accusing opponents of despicable motives, (anti-semitism) or having no right “to teach us about morals…” (the “Zionist” argument par excellence)

One has to concede that, if countries like Saudi Arabia show consternation about human rights violations by Israel, it is appropriate to say “ Mind your own business”. At the same time we all know, that without the great “friendship” of the US, Saudi princes would sleep less soundly. In fact, without US-support many undemocratic and repressive regimes would not have come to power or stayed in power (see for example Mubarak in Egypt)  in the first place.

However, on the other hand, there have been several genuine peace initiatives from the Arab states but all have been rejected by Israel on some pretext. Peace is the last thing, the Zionist government wants. The whole identity of Israel ( “a military with a government”) is based on “defense”, on eternal victimhood, on being a lone island of “European civilization” among the “primitive Arabs” and Jew haters, who want to “drive us into the sea”… Pathetic as it sounds, it still works in the media ….

noEU_320And Europe? What about the “community based on values” as the EU has sought to present itself by adopting the Declaration of Human Rights as part of the Lisbon treaty (formerly called  “constitution”)?

The puppets in Eastern Europe voted against the resolution (… divide and conquer does work …) , but the biggest assholes are GERMANY, ITALY AND THE NETHERLANDS. Germany sells heavily subsidized submarines to Israel and the EU has awarded  Israel a “privileged” trade status …

Professor Avi Shlaim also touched on the subject in his article:

“America and the European Union shamelessly joined Israel in ostracising and demonising the Hamas government and in trying to bring it down by withholding tax revenues and foreign aid. A surreal situation thus developed – where a significant part of the international community imposed economic sanctions not against the occupier but against the occupied, not against the oppressor but against the oppressed.”

This “surreal” picture became even worse when the tendency to decouple the EU’s economic preferential treatment from Israel’s terrible human rights record became clearly visible:

The Czech Republic, which held the European presidency until 30 June, made no secret of its desire to see closer ties and more exchange between the EU and Israel. The outgoing Czech prime minister, Mirek Topolanek, made this clear in an interview with the Tel Aviv daily Haaretz on 26 April in which he said that “the peace process mustn’t be linked to EU-Israeli relations.

In doing so, he was reacting to the view expressed by Benita Ferrero-Waldner, EU commissioner for external relations and European neighbourhood policy. She said: “We believe that good relations with Israel are essential…” (Why?)

While other media sources fell victim to the diplomatic waffle and reported that according to a Senior European diplomat “people are saying there should be a pause in close ties between Israel and the union.”

What breathtaking hypocrisy. While the Norwegian doctor Mads Gilbert described the horrible injuries and deaths he saw in the  Shifa  hospital in Gaza as “scenes from Dante’s inferno” the EU talks about “a pause” in the close relations to Israel. It is like saying “I know, on top of all the other human rights violations, Israel is bombing an overcrowded ghetto right now and hundreds of people are going to be terribly wounded or killed, so what? Let’s just wait till the furor has died down and then we’ll continue with business as usual …”

As LMD reported, The General Affairs and External Relations Council brushed aside the parliamentarians’ concerns [about human rights violations in Gaza] and after France took over the EU presidency at the end of 2008, …. the council expressed its determination to strengthen its links with Israel from April 2009:

“In accordance with the political commitment made on 16 June 2008 at the 8th Association Council meeting between the European Union and Israel, the Council reaffirms its determination to upgrade the level and intensity of its bilateral relations with Israel within the context of the adoption of the new instrument which will replace the current Action Plan from April 2009. That building-up must be based on the shared values of both parties, and particularly on democracy, respect for human rights, the rule of law and fundamental freedoms, good governance and international humanitarian law.”

In the past the European parliament repeatedly tried to call for the suspension of its association agreement with the Israelis (.. when Israeli atrocities received a short media spotlight ..). but the council always undermined these calls for accountability. Even the “diplomatic” (read: alrady hypocritical) rhetoric now shows what all the great talks about “European values” is really worth: The original text stated that “Relations between the Parties, as well as all the provisions of the Agreement itself, shall be based on respect for human rights and democratic principles, which guides their internal and international policy and constitutes an essential element of this Agreement but the latest update (see above) says “it must be based on the shared values of both parties, ..particularly on democracy, respect for human rights ..”, etc.

This is of course totally meaningless. To say in this context that something “must be based on …” is simply a euphemism for saying “it should be based on. It is like the Sunday sermon of a priest, it sounds rather noble, but the people who wrote it,  never expect it to really happen.  In a world where the categorical imperative would rule, moral behaviour would be the norm. (It still is for most ordinary people, I daresay but the profit cult  makes it harder every day …) but in a world based on “might is right”, rules have to be enforced by sanctions and these must be applicable to all parties.

boycott-israel-anim2Will Europe be forever sucking up to the “gangster state” (see Avi Shlaim) Israel because they have excelled at exploiting Holocaust guilt? The perpetrators of unspeakable Nazi crimes are dead. The Holocaust is over. But the crimes against the Palestinians go on and on so we have a moral responsibility to stop them and demand accountability from Israel.

The Eurpean Union has no moral  authority whatsoever. It is a Trojan horse for corporate interests, the financial, neo-feudal, extractive “aristocracy” and the cult of the market. It destroys national sovereignity and undermines democratic decision-making (see the case of Ireland: Voting “No” against a treaty – is not applicable), it pushes for the militarization of Europe  while posing as a “community of values”.

A “European” version of a foreign minister has no democratic legitimacy at all and heaven help us, if it is going to be Tony Bliar ….

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Nobel Peace Prize & Merchants of Death

Obama peaceMy first reaction when I heard the news was disbelief and  spontaneous laughter – the absurdity of  it all is too much and can perhaps best be expressed with paraphrasing Eric Margolis (he was referring to the Afghan elections) : ..”a fraud wrapped up in a farce”.

The PR-industry who invented the brand “Obama” (“Hope & Change” Trademark) has more reason to celebrate….

That any US president should get a “Peace Prize” is utterly ridiculous but in the case of Obama it is plainly absurd because he has done NOTHING for a peaceful world except delivering eloquent speeches.

As many other commentators have pointed out already, Obama is basically continuing the foreign policy of GWB – the only difference is style: he is intelligent, polite, articulate and conciliatory (in his rhetoric) and “offers a hand” to those states whose learders are willing to concede that defying the interests of the United States of Arrogance (by executing policies in the interest of the population)  in the long run is a bad idea and must stop ASAP.

The recent “intervention” of the Obama administration at the UN – to postpone / avert an urgent UNSC discussion of the devastating Goldstone Report on Israeli war crimes in Gaza  is just one absurd example of  …”a  [a new US-] policy  [of] exporting peace and stability to the world…”

But this incredible farce (even the “naked emperor” tale pales in comparison) can also be seen in another, more realistic light which suddenly makes Obama (as US president) a suitable candidate for the prize:

All these awe-inspiring talks about the “Nobel-Prize” are very deceptive because nobody talks anymore about the basis for all this money:

The Nobel family made a fortune with  (possibly the first) “weapons of mass destruction”:  a new class of explosives   that killed thousands of people. Alfred Nobel’s father “made a killing” (excuse the pun) in the Crimean War and the American Civil War – he was perhaps the first mass manufacturer of mines . Alfred Nobel believed in the idea of “deterrence”- not “education for peace” through values like solidarity and working for economic & social justice.

1999_Bertha_von_SuttnerHis life-long (but unfulfilled) love was  Baroness Bertha von Suttner, the first international female peace activist who probably inspired the Nobel Peace Prize. She worked for a short time as his private secretary and became famous with the publication of her novel “Lay Down your Arms”  in 1889 which sold hundreds of thousands of copies and was translated in many languages. The book was sensational not only because of its female aristocratic author but  because it depicted in graphic detail the horrors of war in an era of nationalism, where “the military and patriotic duties to the fatherland” were considered sacrosanct.

She called war “commanded mass murder”, denounced the deceptive language of “patriotism” and  was also aware of the connection between  (systemic) economic / social injustice and war; she also correspondend with the famous Russian novelist Leo Tolstoi, who supported her work. For Tolstoi “the people lead a slave-like existence to serve the interests of a rich minority who lived at their expense” (that was long ago, one might argue but isn’t the “bank bailout” in the trillions yet another symptom for the refeudalisation of society, for serving the interests of a financial aristocracy?)

Bertha von Suttner also travelled to the United States and one of her comments about America is  still highly relevant today: (.. here the circle to Wall Street supporting Obama and Obama supporting Wall Street …. is closed…)

„While talking about doomed monarchies and the constitution of republics, we build  in the “ideal Republic America” a monetary monarchy , which is more absolute than the power of the Russian tsar…”

Bertha von Suttner received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1905. She died shortly before the outbreak of World War I.

Before Alfred Nobel actually died, a premature obituary appeared in a French newspaper titled  “Le marchand de la mort est mort(“The Merchant of Death is Dead”) referring to  Nobel as the man “who became rich by finding ways to kill more people faster than ever before”.

From this perspective, awarding the Nobel Peace Prize to the (current) President of the United States makes a lot of sense. To give this award to  the “Commander in Chief” of the mightiest military machine in the world and to the president of a “superpower” whose economic, financial and military elite sees no problem in demanding  global “full spectrum dominance” – no matter what the moral, social and human cost –  seems quite logical to me.

che statliberty with gun

The profits of one  “Merchant of Death” are being used to reward another MoD, the leader of a country that spends more money on weapons (designed for mass murder)  than all other states combined (but always kills for a “good cause” of course)… and at the same time, we have a government unwilling to provide affordable health insurance to all its citizens (another way to increase suffering and death) because this would means lesser profits for the private health insurers who basically run their business as a racket.

(On “Full Spectrum Dominance” and America’s “role in the world”, how it sees itself” – see also (the second part of) the Nobel Prize speech by Harold Pinter with the theme “What is true and what is false?” and the conclusion: “We are surrounded by a vast tapestry of lies…and if we let this situation of organized deception  prevail, humanity and human dignity are doomed… )

This also resonates with Ghandi’s  concept of “Satyagraha” : the power of truth, to fight for truth, hold on to truth, etc. (…. not to be confused with non-violence…)

Coming back to the Goldstone Report and its instant “burial” by the media, followed by the US-supported demise from the UNSC agenda – Ghandi must be turning in his grave… What did he say about Zionism during his lifetime (in 1938)?

“The cry for the national home for the Jews does not make much appeal to me. The sanction for it is sought in the Bible and the tenacity with which the Jews have hankered after return to Palestine.
Why should they not, like other peoples of the earth, make that country their home where they are born and where they earn their livelihood?
Palestine belongs to the Arabs in the same sense that England belongs to the English or France to the French. It is wrong and inhuman to impose the Jews on the Arabs. What is going on in Palestine today cannot be justified by any moral code of conduct. The mandates have no sanction but that of the last war.

Surely it would be a crime against humanity to reduce the proud Arabs so that Palestine can be restored to the Jews partly or wholly as their national home. The nobler course would be to insist on a just treatment of the Jews wherever they are born and bred. The Jews born in France are French in precisely the same sense that Christians born in France are French.

[…]  If I were a Jew and were born in Germany and earned my livelihood there, I would claim Germany as my home even as the tallest gentile German might, and challenge him to shoot me or cast me in the dungeon; I would refuse to be expelled or to submit to discriminating treatment. And for doing this I
should not wait for! the fellow Jews to join me in civil resistance, but would have confidence that in the end the rest were bound to follow my example…

[…]  And now a word to the Jews in Palestine. I have no doubt that they are going about it in the wrong way. The Palestine of the Biblical conception is not a geographical tract. It is in their hearts. But if they must look to the Palestine of geography as their national home, it is wrong to enter it under  the hadow of the British gun. A religious act cannot be performed with the aid of the bayonet or the bomb. They can settle in Palestine only by the goodwill of the Arabs. They should seek to convert the Arab heart.

The same God rules the Arab heart who rules the Jewish heart… They will find the world opinion in their favor in their religious aspiration. There are hundreds of ways of reasoning with the Arabs, if they will only discard the help of the British bayonet. As it is, they are co-sharers with the British in despoiling a people who have done no wrong to them. I am not defending the Arab excesses. I wish they had chosen the way of non-violence in resisting what they rightly regarded as an unwarrantable encroachment upon their country. But according to the accepted canons of right and wrong, nothing can be said against the Arab resistance in the face of overwhelming odds.” […]

So much for “non-violence” under all circumstances…

But the astounding “act of hypnosis” (which Pinter referred to in his speech) ist still working: no matter how many “reports” about war crimes or crimes against humanity committed by the Israeli government are being published:  they are followed by –   silence.

How is that possible?  The two involved “Merchants of Death”, the US and Israeli government have eternal impunity, no human law can apparently touch them… they seem to be  a  (immoral) class of their own… as the following dialogue between a professor of international law and a former legal counsel to the IDF, which really took place)  shows:

You have inflicted Nuremberg crimes on the Palestinians”. How can you justify that?

“Military necessity.”

That argument was rejected at Nuremberg”.

We have PR-people in the United States who handle these matters for us.”

(Case closed.)

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Iran – Yellow Cake, Green Salt and Red Herrings

IAEA secret report: Iran worked on nuclear warhead”

one_ring

It is a sad day when even The Guardian is spreading cheap PR (propaganda) to influence public opinion: (Cui bono? Israel, the state of eternal impunity…)

“The urgency of dealing with the Iranian nuclear threat was underscored today when a leaked report revealed that the UN inspection agency believes the Islamic republic has “sufficient information” to make a nuclear weapon and has “probably tested” a key component.

The incendiary and misleading rhetoric in the introduction of this paragraph clearly demonstrates the bias behind it because it uses unproven premises to suggest  that they are proven facts:

Premise 1: Iran seeks nuclear weapons

Premise 2: Iran has a secret programme for developing nuclear warheads

Premise 3: (built on the other two): This represents a “threat” to world peace.

The deduction is made from accepted opinions not from first and true sentences in other words a foregone conclusion: there is an “urgency” to deal with a threat whose existence is only imputed, not proven.

For comparison: Here is an excerpt from a REUTERS article which does not violate the principle of  “balanced” reporting:

“The West suspects Iran wants to develop a nuclear weapons capability under the guise of a declared civilian atomic energy program. Tehran rejects the charge, saying its uranium enrichment program is a peaceful way to generate electricity.”

Source: Iran nuclear “threat” hyped: IAEA’s ElBaradei

“Managing Perceptions” Not Reporting Facts

“A secret annexe” has been found – give me a break, after the “Yellow Cake” scam and the “Green Salt” scare what it is now – the “Red Herring” (distract attention from the devastating Goldstone report on war crimes in Gaza which has just been released) – or just lie and distort till you are blue in the face?

As I mentioned in my previous post about the Goldstone report, the JTA laments the “bad timing” of the report just as Israel is trying “to convey the impression in Washington that Israel is more open to negotiations than the Palestinians and that the principal threat to the region is Iran” so it is about time we focus media attention on “evil” Iran….. and the guardian obliges with this shabby piece of journalism?

Western diplomats confirmed that the annexe was authentic”.

“Its absolutely accurate,” one official said. “It shows the agency’s thinking, which is that Iran is a lot further along on this than most people think. It suggests the Iranians have done a lot of work.”

The annexe said Iranian scientists had engaged in “probable testing” of explosives arranged in a hemisphere, which is how an implosion-type nuclear warhead is triggered.

There was also evidence, the report says, that Iran had worked on developing a chamber to carry a warhead on top of one of its missiles “that is quite likely to be nuclear”.

Why are the “”Western diplomats” and  the “official” not identified? How did (could) they verify the authenticity of the document? What kind of  journalism is this? Has Julian Borger actually seen the “secret annexe” or is he just “reporting” hearsay? Does it not occur to journalists these days that they might be used for “psyops”- presented to the world as “ independent media reports”? If there is evidence, then show it to the world and publish the document.

Believes”, “Probable “, “quite likely”- what is this – an insinuation exercise? An illustration of Aristotelian and Schopenhauer’s lessons on rhetoric and dialectic?

Why was the IAEA not given a chance to respond to the allegations in the article?  For comparison the AFP reported recently:

IAEA denies report it is sure Iran is seeking bomb

El baradeiVIENNA The UN atomic watchdog said Thursday it has no concrete proof that there is or has been a nuclear weapons programme in Iran.

The International Atomic Energy Agency rejected a US media report which claimed its experts believed Tehran had the ability to make a nuclear bomb and was on the way to developing a missile system able to carry an atomic warhead.

“With respect to a recent media report, the IAEA reiterates that it has no concrete proof that there is or has been a nuclear weapon programme in Iran,” a statement said.

According to the media report, the proof was contained in a so-called “secret annex” to the IAEA’s latest report on Iran, but was deliberately being withheld by the agency’s director general Mohamed ElBaradei.

“At the board of governors meeting on September 9, Director General ElBaradei warned that continuing allegations that the IAEA was withholding information on Iran are politically motivated and totally baseless,” it said.

Back to the Guardian:

“Attention will now focus on the United Nations in New York next week, where Obama takes the rare step of chairing a security council session in order to generate momentum towards nuclear disarmament, non-proliferation and consensus over Iran.”

The US “generating momentum towards nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation” – are you kidding?

Kofi Annan (from a speech at Princeton, November 28, 2006):

“All of the NPT nuclear-weapon states are modernizing their nuclear arsenals or their delivery systems. They should not imagine that this will be accepted as compatible with the npt.

Everyone will see it for what it is: a euphemism for nuclear rearmament . . . By clinging to and modernizing their own arsenals, even when there is no obvious threat to their national security that nuclear weapons could deter, nuclear-weapon States encourage others—particularly those that do face real threats in their own region—to regard nuclear weapons as essential, both to their security and to their status. It would be much easier to confront proliferators, if the very existence of nuclear weapons were universally acknowledged as dangerous and ultimately illegitimate.”

After the invasion of Iraq, the world must have reached the conclusion that striving for nuclear weapons is the only safeguard against US aggression, that it is  far more protective for states (with valuable resources or “strategic” importance) to have nuclear weapons than to renounce them.

The Iraq War has demonstrated that a state without weapons of mass destruction is vulnerable to invasion and occupation. It would be perfectly logical to conclude that Iraq was attacked not because it had weapons of mass destruction but because it had none. This pathological logic will be further confirmed if the United States continues to pursue diplomacy with North Korea but demonizes Iran  and threatens it with sanctions for which there is no legal base.

The estimated number of casualties from the Iraq-Iran war is  one million Iranians. Many were victims of Saddam’s use of chemical weapons (both civilian and military targets). The Iranian nuclear-weapon programme began in the 1980s, perhaps as a response to Iraq’s use of these weapons.

Neither uranium enrichment nor plutonium reprocessing is prohibited under NPT rules, as long as they are under IAEA safeguards. According to a legal adviser[1] to the Foreign Office ‘safeguards are designed to detect diversion of materials for military or unknown purposes. Nothing in the NPT or safeguards agreements legally prevents a state party to them from acquiring nuclear-weapon capability, for example by enriching uranium to high grades, reprocessing spent fuel and so on’.

Iran was a signatory to the NPT from its inception (1-July 1968) but Israel never signed the NPT, nor even admitted that it has nuclear weapons  let  alone let anyone from the IAEA inspect its nuclear facilities. However, as we all must understand:  it’s not the weapons, it’s who has them..

The Bush administration has tried to smear El Baradei and get rid of him but did not succeed (remember the Yellow Cake scam) . Perhaps he was too decent for the job and even had the audacity to point out the double standards of the “international community”?

“We must abandon the unworkable notion that it is morally reprehensible for some countries to pursue weapons of mass destruction yet morally acceptable for others to rely on them for security—and indeed to continue to refine their capacities and postulate plans for their use.”

Mohamed ElBaradei, NYT, 12 February, 2004

The smear campaign against institutions that do not comply with Israels policies and plans is pretty obvious (see also my last post regarding UNHRC) and the IAEA has been targeted because it did not produce the desired “proof” that Iran is a “threat”( Why do I have a feeling of Dèja Vu? Just remember the accusations against the UN weapons inspectors in Iraq who did not oblige with finding non-existent WMDs…)

Here is an interesting article by Gareth Porter about the latest development in “The laptop of Mass Destruction”-case….

More Sources:

US Iran report branded dishonest (BBC)

Letter from IAEA refuting false allegations in Congressional report

Iran in the Crosshairs (FPIF)

IAEA – Focus Iran – Latest Reports

IAEA Report September 2008


Last words …

As soon as certain topics are raised. the concrete melts into the abstract and no one seems able to think of turns of speech that are not hackneyed: Prose consists less and less of words chosen for the sake of their meaning, and more and more of phrases tacked together like the sections of a prefabricated henhouse.”

George Orwell


[1] D. M. Edwards, ‘International Legal Aspects of Safeguards and the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons’, International and Comparative Law Quarterly, vol. 33, no. 1, 1984.

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THE ISRAELI PATIENT -Part 1

Reflections on (German) media and other reactions to the publication of the Goldstone report on Gaza War Crimes

gaza grauen feet

Victim of "Operation Cast Lead"

“We believe that the existence of a moral society clearly requires a profound, honest discussion, of which the voice of soldiers on the ground is an inseparable part.

(Statement from “Breaking the Silence” activists)

German Media resonance to UN Report on War Crimes in the news

1. German State Television :

ARD (“TAGESSCHAU”): 7 broadcasts per day with  73 minutes total airtime and the extended version “Tagesthemen” with 27 minutes airtime at 10 pm.

Mentioned once

in  “tagesschau”: Sept. 15, 8 p.m.

31 seconds in “news in brief” section; no follow up, no context, no comment considered necessary;

(Transcript / English translation)

“Eight months after the Israeli military offensive in the Gaza strip, the UN have released the results of their investigation.

According to the report both Israelis and Palestinians committed numerous war crimes i.e. the mission concluded that Israel intended to punish the whole Palestinian population. The report also condemns the firing of rockets into Israeli residential neighbourhoods by radical Palestinians.

During the Israeli offensive more than 1400 people were killed and thousands were wounded.”

For comparison: the death of Hollywood actor Patrick Swayze was reported in all broadcasts on that day ….

ZDF (“heute”): 2 broadcasts per day[1] with 32 minutes total airtime and the extended version “heute journal” with 30 minutes airtime at 9:45 pm)

Not mentioned at all

Only reported on website (with old video):

UNO wirft Israel und Palästinensern Kriegsverbrechen vor

(“UN accuses Israel and Palestinians of war crimes”)

2. Austrian State Television – ORF (2 channels)

ORF 1 (“Zeit im Bild ”): 4 broadcasts per day with  a total of 42 minutes airtime und ORF 2 (“ZiB” und  extended version “ZiB2”: 25 minutes ): 69 minutes total airtime

Mentioned once

in “ZiB 2”: Sept. 15, 10 pm – 16 seconds – (total airtime 25 minutes)

Transcript / English Translation:

According to a UN report, Israel is responsible for numerous war crimes committed during the Gaza offensive. The report also condemns the Palestinian rocket attacks on Israeli civilians.

Israel has criticized the report but is going to scrutinize its findings.

To be fair, state television (ZDF)  did broadcast previous allegations of war crimes and violations of humanitarian law (Sources: “Breaking the Silence”, Haaretz, etc.):

Israels Soldaten brechen Schweigen über Gaza-Krieg (July 2009)

Schockierende Aussagen zum Gaza-Krieg (March 2009)

They also „reported“ self-exculpatory propaganda like this in January 2009:

Ex-Botschafter Stein: Keine Katastrophe in Gaza

(“[Israeli] Ex-ambassador: No Catastrophe in Gaza”) – with the typical projection theme: („they“ are always to blame for having started the aggression to which “we” had to respond…)

Hamas has forced Israel to start a war – not  the other way round“. ..Israel does not conduct a war against the people of Gaza, who have been taken  hostage by Hamas”….etc.

ARD has also previously reported the findings of Human Rights groups and other NGOs on the outrageous conduct of the IDF during Operation Cast Lead:

“Zögert nicht, alles zu zerstören”

(„Do not hesitate to destroy everything“)

(Source: Breaking The Silence– testimony from IDF soldiers;  July 2009)

Scharfe Kritik an Israel und Hamas

(„Strong Criticism on Israel and Hamas“, Source: AI, July 2009)

ARD also reported on Sept. 9, 2009:

773 tote Zivilisten im Gaza-Krieg?

(“773 dead civilians in Gaza War?”)

“According to B’tselem the war in Gaza caused more civilian deaths than military casualties. The military and journalists (!) consider these figures false: they believe that many of the victims were in fact combatants, erroneously counted as killed civilians.”

“The IDF has put the number of  killed Palestinians at 1166 with two thirds being counted as  Hamas militants.” Then they quote Yaacov Ammidror (a reserve General) as follows:

B’t Selem has a long tradition of lies and deceptions. They claim for example that 248 policemen have been killed. Hamas says that a majority of these policemen were members of their “armed wing” but they need not admit that, one only has to ask Fatah people…”

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Has B’t Selem ignored facts?”

(Picture: Can you spot the dead “combatants” on the ground?

One journalist called Ben Dror Yamini of the  daily  “Ma’ariv” is also quoted to sow doubt about the accuracy and honesty of B’tselem. He claims that because many names were also on a list of dead persons published by Hamas, this “proves” that they were Hamas combatants. He complains that “it is now being hammered into the heads of the public” that more than 700 of the people killed were civilians, altough this is “simply not true”.

This is just one example (others will follow in my next commentary) of Israel’s latest PR strategy to discredit all justified criticism: “Character assassination” as the last stage of a smear campaign against NGOs (especially Human Rights groups) and of course the UN, that has been going on for some time.

If you have no valid arguments to disprove evidence like this:

…. I asked the Israeli army to give me their list of—which they say about 700 casualties that they claim, or 1,000—I don’t remember now. They refused to give me their list. I wanted the list to check name by name and then to compare with the list that Palestinian human rights organizations compiled and to see where the differences are. And they said they could not give me the list, because this would disclose their sources. In one specific question about two women who were killed in short—by short range from a tank, I asked, “Are these two women included in your list of casualties?” I didn’t get an answer. So, the Israeli refusal to cooperate with information is very telling.

Israeli journalist Amira Hass on Democracy Now!

– you must resort to attacking the personality of the messenger or your opponent (ad hominem attacks) in an attempt to destroy their credibility. In this case not just the person speaking out but the whole organisation behind it.

Under the motto “Consider the Source” the pro-Israeli “thought police” has created or infiltrated groups like “UN-“Watch” who may appear as a decent watchdog at first sight, but as soon as you dig deeper you will find the “affiliation to the American Jewish Committee” and their “work” consists mainly of smearing anybody who dares to speak the truth about Israel (or the US and its economic terror for that matter – just see the case of UN food rapporteur Jean Ziegler)

Thanks to the JTA we are informed with unusual candour about the countermeasures  Israel and “Jewish groups” are going to take to utterly discredit the Goldstone report (which corroberates what many other investigations found earlier) and, in the process, will hammer the last nail into the coffin of the UNHRC’s “battered” reputation (Durban was just the beginning of a smear campaign…)

The unspeakable crime of the UN (and practically all other organisations which criticize Israel’s Human Rights violations)? alleged “hopeless bias” against Israel.

No matter how impeccable their professional records as experts of international law, no matter how high their moral authority is (i.e. Archbishop Desmond Tutu, who also chaired a fact-finding mission mandated by the Human Rights Council in 2008), whether it is AI, HRW, B’tSelem, etc. – even the US State Department is “not credible” and “lacks professionalism” and the reports are always “highly flawed”.

A favourite method is to associate  the sinister UN folks (in the minds of the public) with “a hated or despised category” of people and who can be better for this purpose than the ultimate bogeyman Ahmadinejad who must serve as poor substitute for Hitler.

So what did the Knesset speaker first tell the world?

“ The same UN that allows the president of a country to announce on a podium its aspiration to destroy the state of Israel has no right to teach us about morality

(he was of course referring to the Iranian President).

What "morality" could he mean?

What "morality" could he mean?

As all informed citizens of this planet know Ahmadinejad never said, that Israel must be “wiped off the map” and the “outrage” at the UN anti-racism conference in Geneva was also a fine demonstration of the power of Israel’s PR-machine, but that is beside the point.

Thanks to our media sheep the average “consumer” now believes that Ahmadinejad, standing for the “evil” state of Iran, and by having been labelled   a “Holocaust denier” is of course a threat to world peace. (I have covered this subject in more detail in my German blog at wordpress – medienschafe).

The negative “terrorist” frame for Iran, Hamas or Hisbollah for that matter, has been firmly established in the public opinion so that the mere mention of their names is enough to trigger all the desired contempt and fears.

But the JTA is surprisingly frank about the real concerns of the Israeli government: the decades of suffering and monumental injustice the Palestinians have endured is not the central problem, no – the Goldstone report is rather “a public relations problem” not  the final proof of the  moral abyss into which the IDF and the Israeli government have fallen….

While ordinary people like us stand aghast in view of the systematic brutality (weblink: scroll down forEnglish version) of the Gaza massacre –

(I  quite agree with Norman Finkelstein: this was no “war” – given the huge disparity of force and  the earlier transformation of Gaza into an “Open-Air prison”)  – these people are mainly concerned about  the “bad timing” of the report just as one is trying “to convey the impression in Washington that Israel is more open to negotiations than the Palestinians and that the principal threat to the region is Iran.

(Increasing evidence of) white phosphorus, DIME weapons; traumatized and undernourished children, total destruction, deliberate killing of civilians including children, collective punishment, targeting of  flour mills, chicken farms, water wells and sewage lagoons – no big deal!

Instead, the problem is, that the “hopelessly biased” reporting of all these atrocities “gives Palestinians and Arab nations an opportunity to complicate that effort.” [to present Israel as  a “reasonable” party willing to negotiate for “peace”, etc.)

But the hypocrisy and self-righteousness knows no bounds: the “radical body” UNHRC is accused of having “consistently demonized Israel, while giving a free pass to some of the world’s worst tyrants, from Sudan to Iran.” (Where is the proof for this accusation?)

This is a recurring theme in Israel’s verbal attacks: they accuse others of their own immoral practices, perhaps a case of  what psychologists call “projection”? For we all know that the masters of “demonization” are located in Tel Aviv (and Washington) – as the cases of  Iran or Hamas clearly demonstrate.

(to be continued….)

Read the Goldstone report and see for yourself if it is “biased”…

P.S.  I am going to explain why this (trilogy) is called “The Israeli Patient” in the next post on this subject …

Al


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